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The website of Author/Writer and Psychic Medium Astrid Brown. Making the most of 'YOU' i.e. how to achieve well-being and beauty from within ourselves. A truly holistic blog providing information on all aspects of psychic mediumship, spiritualism, philosophy, holistic therapies, nutrition, health, stress, mental health and beauty with a little bit of Wicca for good measure. Feeling and looking good is as much a part of how we feel inside as the outside.

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I am a great believer in Karma, but just what is it? Karma comes from the Sanskrit and ancient Indian Language with the underlying principal that every deed in our lives will affect our future life. For example, if we treat others badly during our lifetime we will have negative experiences later on in that lifetime or in future lifetimes. Likewise, if we treat others well we will be rewarded by positive experiences.

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Today I am blogging about inexperienced Psychics/Mediums. There are many psychics/mediums around who give the profession a bad name, t...

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Showing posts with label heart disease. Show all posts
Showing posts with label heart disease. Show all posts

Wednesday 4 May 2011


We should all know by now how too much salt in our diet raises our blood pressure but have you stopped to ask how and what are the dangers?

Well our bodies are kept in balance by the Hypothalamus (An area in the brain its job is to maintain homeostasis within the body). It does this in a number of ways and its a bit akin to a laboratory constantly analysing our blood, checking if we have the correct amount of hormones, is the blood the right consistency, does it have the correct balance of salts to maintain body function. Salt, sodium chloride to give it its proper name is necessary along with other salts like Potassium are necessary for a variety of functions and nerve function being one of them. It is through the interaction between Potassium and Sodium that our nerves work and are able to pass signals down through our nerves from our brains to our muscles etc. If this balance is upset then our bodies won't work correctly.

Now if you are eating a high salt diet (Sodium) and you know what happens if you eat something very salty how do you feel? Very thirsty I shouldn't wonder and this is because the hypothalamus has noticed there is too much sodium in the blood, so the first thing it does is to alert the body and make us thirsty and cause us to drink more fluid in an effort to dilute the blood. At the same time the Hypothalamus  causes the  pituitary gland to release Vasopressin (Anti diuretic hormone) this is circulated in the blood stream and targets the kidneys not to filter out so much liquid in the blood as waste (Urine becomes more concentrated so you don't pass as much). These two actions generate more blood volume in an effort to dilute the concentration of Sodium (more liquid part of the blood).

Cue the heart, now your poor heart has more work to do, you've upped its work load putting more strain on it. You've still got the same amount of arteries and veins but have more liquid for your heart to pump through, this means your left Ventricle of your heart is under strain thus the action of forcing all this volume of fluid through the same amount of vessels raises the blood pressure. So first and foremost high blood pressure strains the heart and the heart being a muscle, like any other muscle will enlarge to cope with the work. Now the kidneys, they filter impurities and toxins out of the body through a series of tiny tubules called Nephrons, these tiny vessels are very delicate and only one cell thick and thus very fragile. With the raised pressure of all this excess fluid in the blood being forced harder through the circulation, these tiny vessels are easily damaged.

As we get older our arteries, which are a series of elastic muscular tubes, become less elastic, think of washing a pair of knickers hundreds of times eventually the elastic gets spent doesn't it? well its like this with the arteries. Because they have lost this elasticity they cannot cope so well with an increased blood pressure and if these arteries happen to be in the brain, the result can be a burst blood vessel hence one type of stroke. Now couple this with someone who has had a fatty diet eating lots of saturated fats. That fat circulates in the blood stream and just like a sink drain that gets blocked when you try to pour fat down it regularly, the same thing happens in an artery. Fat sticks to the artery walls forming plaques, blood cells become sticky and before you know it you have a clot forming. If this clot travels to the brain you have the other type of stroke. A stroke is where the brain is starved of oxygen because blood flow is restricted to an area and that area of the brain is damaged. If the clot forms in the leg we have a Deep Vein Thrombosis, if it forms in the lungs we have a Pulmonary Thrombosis and if we have a clot in the circulation of the heart we have a Coronary Thrombosis.  Obviously too furred up arteries will raise blood pressure too as the heart will have to work harder to push all that volume of blood through narrowed blood vessels.

So now you know why too much salt is bad for you and the worst culprits for harbouring salt are processed foods. Start reading labels and become familiar with recommended daily allowances, you may just save your health a whole lot of trouble

In the UK, the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of Salt is 6 grams for an adult, 1 gram for a baby under 12 months old and between 2-6 grams of salt for a child up until their 11th birthday.


In the US, the RDA is 2.3 g of sodium, or 5.75 g of salt, since to calculate the amount of salt from sodium you should multiply by 2.5.


Maggie Brown (Author)
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Not a new story, the one below as it has been well documented in the past fat carried around the abdomen is unhealthy as fat there is likely to be around the heart. On the whole men are more prone to fat around their abdomen than women and this is because of female hormones. Oestrogen causes fat to be distributed around the hips and thighs and gives women, their curvy shape. This fat placement is designed to sustain pregnancy and breast feeding and indeed women who breast feed regain the figures back easier and quicker than those who don't. Whilst we are on the subject it's not breast feeding that causes breast tissue to droop but pregnancy and not wearing the correctly fitting bras as the "Coopers ligaments" the natural bra, within the breast tissue can become over stretched and once this happens no amount of exercise, breast firming creams will help. Prevention is the best policy here.

When women go through the menopause, the amount of oestrogen is diminished, the fatty tissue and adrenal glands still produce a little but not enough to prevent menopause, however due to the ratio of androgens (male hormones and both sexes produce a little of male and female hormones) becomes higher than female hormones as a result there is a shift in fat distribution. Post menopausal women will notice their waist will become thicker and they will store more weight on their abdomens than their hips. They will also find their bottoms become flatter due to this redistribution as a result they are more prone to heart disease than pre menopause. The effect of oestrogen protects women more from heart disease and this is largely down to the way fat is stored.

Now to compound things a bit further one of the things heavy, binge drinking does, it causes more androgens to be produced in women over time, this will have an effect on the female to male hormone ratio as a result more fat will be distributed in the and around the abdomens in females, obviously it goes without saying this makes them more prone to heart disease as this fat is going to collect around the coronary arteries. Alcohol of any description is high in calories too.

If you have read previous articles I have posted on this blog and you can find them on here by going to the stress section, the effects of stress long term on the body due to high levels of cortisone (stress hormones) causes a change in weight distribution also, with more fat being stored around the abdomen also.

Young women because of their lifestyles where they are drinking more than ever and the effects of today's stresses are now finding they are more prone to heart disease than ever before. Many women who have families now go out to work, nothing wrong with that, but due to time constraints rely on convenience foods and these are often high in salt and fat and MSG, (I have a blog on this here too how MSG stimulates the appetite). With a little planning it is possible to balance a full time job and a family and eat healthily. And with the use of a freezer you can prepare in advance your own convenience store of food when you are in a hurry. Don't overlook the humble slow cooker either, nor are seasonal vegetables expensive, so there is no excuse really. Even for those who say time prevents them from preparing vegetables  frozen vegetables are often higher in vitamin content than fresh as frozen vegetables are picked very fresh and frozen immediately and thus the vitamin content is locked in. How can anybody say they dislike fruit, its naturally sweet, which has the right kind of unrefined sugars, seasonal fruit is not expensive, its high in vitamins and roughage so is filling and what preparation is needed little if any.

Frankly it's just too easy to reach for that biscuit, which really is what I term 'empty calories' in other wards there is no nutritional value in them, likewise cakes and sweets. The trouble is when you get into this cycle of sweet quick fixes, it often results in weight gain. Every time you reach for that sweet, yes it will make you feel better momentarily but you are doing your pancreas no favours in the long run. For every time you eat refined sugars your poor pancreas has to produce insulin to counteract this so you end up with a pattern of blood sugar highs and lows and it is in these lows your body craves sugar and thus another biscuit. In time this can affect the pancreas and can instigate type 2 Diabetes in later life and in this generation we have action found type 2 Diabetes in over weight children.

So next time you reach for that bag of salty, fatty crisps (and too much salt raises the blood pressure, there is a blog on that here somewhere) or biscuit, think of the muffin top and all that fat furring up and blocking your arteries. Tip print the pic below and  tape it to your biscuit tin

'Muffin Tops' or a beer belly double heart disease risk

Having a ‘modest’ beer belly or muffin top can double the risk of dying from heart disease or strokes, say scientists.
A U.S. study of nearly 16,000 patients with coronary heart disease found that a layer of flab around the stomach can be as dangerous as smoking a packet of cigarettes a day or having very high cholesterol.
The findings add to the evidence that heart problems and furred arteries are not just linked to how much fat people have - but also to the location of the fat.
Danger: A study of nearly 16,000 patients coronary heart disease found that a layer of flab around the stomach can be as dangerous as smoking a packet of cigarettes a day or having very high cholesterol
Danger: A study of nearly 16,000 patients coronary heart disease found that a layer of flab around the stomach can be as dangerous as smoking a packet of cigarettes a day or having very high cholesterol
Past studies have shown that ‘apple-shaped’ women with fat around their waists are at greater risk than ‘pear-shaped’ women whose fat is on their hips.
Researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, looked at data from 15,923 patients with coronary heart disease. They found that those with fat around their waists were twice as likely to die from the disease.
Dr Francisco Lopez-Jimenez, said that fat around the waist was more metabolically active.

'It produces more chances in cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar,' he said. 'However, people who have fat mostly in other locations in the body, specifically the legs and buttocks, don't show this increased risk.'
Doctors often assess a patient's risk of coronary artery disease by looking at their body mass index - a measure that takes into account someone's weight and height.
However, the study authors say doctors should advise patients with heart disease with normal BMIs to shed weight if they have a large waist or high waist-to-hip ratio.
The findings are published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Maggie Brown (Author)
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Saturday 19 February 2011


We know that smoking can wreak havoc on a woman's appearance, (as explained in previous articles on this blog) causing a sallow complexion and premature ageing, and as well as having effects on sexual health contributing to infertility, early menopause, can contribute to osteoporosis.

Smokers lungs, mouth and skin cancers, circulatory disease leading to gangerine
Smoking causes 50 certain diseases cigarettes are a well-known cause of lung cancer, chronic lung disease, heart disease, and other disorders such as skin cancer, mouth cancer, stroke and high blood pressure. It is the myriad of toxins in cigarette smoke, rather than the nicotine content, that is responsible for the majority of the harmful effects. In other words, it is the delivery system, not the addictive drug, which is responsible for the vast majority of tobacco-related diseases. And it is not the nicotine in cigarettes, but the tar that causes the unsightly yellow-brown stains on fingers and teeth. There are more than 4,000 other chemicals in cigarette smoke, many of which are known to cause cancer. In particular it is the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and nitrosamines that are the probable causative agents for lung and other cancers.

It is the adverse nicotine effect in tobacco products that leads to addiction and this which sustains tobacco use. Because most smokers are nicotine-dependent, they continue to expose themselves to toxins from cigarettes. It is the other chemicals in cigarettes, not nicotine, which are responsible for most of the adverse health effects related to smoking. Nicotine is an addictive drug. When smoked, it is delivered into the lungs and is rapidly absorbed by the blood, reaching the brain within approximately ten seconds. At this point, smokers experience a nicotine "hit" - causing the brain to produce Dopamines, a neurotransmitter that regulates emotion and feelings of pleasure. The brain soon comes to expect regular doses of nicotine and suffers nicotine withdrawal symptoms when the supply is interrupted. The addictive nature of nicotine is largely due to its dose and rapid delivery to the brain when smoking cigarettes.

Women who carry on smoking in pregnancy endanger not only themselves, but their babies too. Mothers who smoke around their children also put their kids' health at risk. Even before conceiving research shows that cigarette smoking is harmful to a woman's ovaries. It can cause a woman's eggs to be more prone to genetic abnormality and increase the risk of spontaneous miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy. Women who smoke take longer to conceive with the chances of conceiving falling by up to 40 per cent per menstrual cycle. The more cigarettes you smoke the longer it takes to become pregnant. Just one cigarette a day can have a significant impact. In men stopping smoking can reduce the risk of erectile dysfunction and may improve sexual potency.

• Harming ovaries
• genetic abnormalities
• miscarriages
• ectopic pregnancy
• IVF attempts improve increasing the success of fertility treatment.

There is a reduction in the likelihood of the embryo implanting compared to non-smokers, and nearly twice as many IVF attempts may be required to conceive in smokers. Breathing in secondary smoke can cause nearly as much harm as a woman smoking herself.
Like every mum-to-be you want to have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. The best way to ensure this is not to smoke and avoid all smoking dangers. Smoking during pregnancy harms you and it harms your baby.

  • Poisonous chemicals in cigarette smoke passing through your body into your baby.
  • Cigarette smoke disrupting the flow of blood to your baby.
  • Prenatal passive smoking influences placental and fetal development, reduces birth weight, and affects lung and brain development.
  • A smaller, weaker baby that will be more prone to infections and illness.An increased risk of breathlessness and wheezing in young babies.
  • Increased risk of congenital defects such as cleft lip and/or palate or limb deformities.

Stopping smoking at any stage of pregnancy is very beneficial. The moment you quit you start increasing your chances of a healthier pregnancy and a healthier baby. You will have more energy, be able to cope better with pregnancy, and know you are doing the best for your unborn baby. Passive smoking is equally dangerous for your unborn baby. If your family or friends smoke near you, you will breathe in harmful gases and chemicals and pass them onto your baby. Passive smoking becomes more harmful for mothers who exceeds the age of 30. There is more of a risk of sudden death symptoms for new born babies if their parents were smokers. Passive smoking also increases the possibility of having respiratory diseases for children before the school age; it also increases the possibility of having heart diseases that reaches the rate of 50%, hence, increase the risk of Angina due to the increase damage of the cells in the heart muscle because of carbon monoxide and nicotine. Studies have shown that certain parts of the chromosomes were more affected by the tobacco, which lead to blood cancer (leukaemia). This may explains the relationship between smoking during pregnancy and leukaemia in children. Children growing up in a smoke free home are less likely to catch colds, coughs and bugs. And you will reduce the risk of serious problems like cot death, asthma, chest infections, and glue ear and you and your partner will feel healthier, should have fewer coughs and colds, and have more energy to run around and play with your children.

20 minutes: Your blood pressure and pulse rate return to normal
8 hours: Oxygen levels in your blood return to normal.
24 hours: Carbon monoxide has been eliminated from your body. Your lungs start to clear out mucus and other smoking debris.
48 hours: There is no nicotine left in your body. Your ability to taste and smell is greatly improved.
72 hours: Breathing becomes easier. Your bronchial tubes begin to relax and your energy levels increase.
2-12 weeks: Circulation improves throughout the body, making walking and running a whole lot easier.
3-9 months: Coughs, wheezing and breathing problems get better as your lung function is increased by up to 10%.
5 years: Heart attack falls to about half that of a smoker.
10 years: Risk of lung cancer falls to half that of a smoker. Risk of heart attack falls to same as someone who has never smoked.

Maggie Brown (Author)
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I am often asked various questions pertaining to the spirit world and various aspects of the psychic, here are some of them: I will in time feature more questions and answers as this webpage evolves

Q. Is a psychic or medium a fortune teller?
A. It may surprise you to know psychics and mediums are not fortune tellers
Q. Is it possible to forecast the future?
A.Well not 100% and this is because of free will.
Q. What is free will?
A. Free will is YOUR right to decide what you want to do about a situation, it is a choice
Q. How does free will affect a situation?
A. Well before we incarnate as Spirit in a human body, we decide on what experiences and challenges that will benefit our spiritual growth. However we are given the choice (free will) as to whether we go through with the experience or challenge. In effect we are allowed to change or mind.
Q. So are you saying we all know what lies before us?
A. Well in a way we all do. Remember we are 'Spirit' in a human body and your spirit does retain a memory but it is deep in our subconscious. This memory is retained deeply for a reason to help us fulfill our experiences and challenges we ourselves chose. However it is also at this deep level so we are not so aware. If you knew what lay before you would you go through with it? Probably not but we still retain this memory deeply and this reflects in our Aura.
Q. So what is the Aura?
A.The aura is The Aura is an electromagnetic field that surrounds living bodies, this includes people, animals, plants and crystals and is composed of several layers that are constantly moving. The Aura links us to whats known as Universal energy i.e. that is all the knowledge in the Universe past, present and future. It is on this aura that psychics are able to tap into and access your past, whats going on in the present and the possible future and I say possible specifically if your goal or desire is dependent on other people, for remember every person involved in a situation has free will.