doctor checking a patient for thyroids

Thyroid Deficiencies And Your Skin

You walk into your doctor’s office. You tell him you are concerned because lately you notice your skin has become dry and wrinkled, your nails break easily, and you are losing hair from your head and eyebrows. He suggests that you balance your diet and get more vitamins.

According to the Thyroid Federation International, there are up to 300 million people in the world with thyroid dysfunction and, of that number, over half are presumed to not know it. Due to incomplete or outmoded testing methods and failure to recognize symptoms, hypothyroidism is one of the most commonly misdiagnosed or undiagnosed health problems in the world.

The thyroid gland produces hormones that help to balance your metabolism and keep your body weight and temperature regulated. According to Dr. Broda Barnes, author of “Hypothyroidism: the Unsuspected Illness”, “When thyroid function is low, circulation is reduced. In advanced cases of hypothyroidism, the skin, in fact, may receive as little as one fourth to one fifth the normal blood supply.” As a result, hypothyroidism , or under- active thyroid, can cause your skin to retain fluids, it may create bags under the eyes and bloating in your legs, ankles, and fingers as well as cracked heels, colorless skin, and eczema.

Myxodema
Myxodema is skin swelling caused by deposits of sugar called glucosaminoglycans. It is a result of insufficient production of hormones by the thyroid gland, which is also responsible for regulation of metabolism. Myxodema is most likely to occur when hypothyroidism goes without treatment for an extended period and can have serious complications. The condition can be treated with thyroid replacement hormones which will help alleviate the symptoms.

Vitiglio
Vitiglio is a pigmentation disorder that is frequently associated with autoimmune thyroid disease. Its symptoms include white patches on the skin, hair and eyebrows, and in severe cases, may result in the total loss of color from the skin. It usually precedes thyroid disfunction by many years, which makes it necessary for those with the skin disorder to be screened before hyperthyroidism develops.It can be treated medically with creams, oral medications, ultraviolet light, and removing color from other areas of skin so tone appears more even. It can be treated surgically with skin grafting and tattooing.

Hyperthyrhoidism
Hyperthyrhoidism is cause by too much thyroid hormone. It can make skin smooth and moist and prone to flushing and redness. Skin may become thin in some areas, whereas it may become thick and hyper pigmented (darker) in others, and may become extremely dry. Pretibal myxedema is another skin condition caused by hyperthyroidism which effects the front of the legs. Symptoms include hives and itching based on the increased action of hormones metabolizing carbohydrates, proteins and fats. These conditions can be treated with hypoallergenics.

If you have any of these symptoms, it is important that you tell your doctor you need to be tested for hormone imbalance. Early detection can prevent severe symptoms from occurring.

woman trying to pop a pimple

Common Skin Symptoms Triggered By Auto- Immune Disease

Vitiligo is just one of the skin symptoms triggered by an autoimmune disorder. It affect not only the health and daily lives of the sufferers but also their self-esteem. An autoimmune disorder occurs when the body’s immune system fails to distinguish between healthy cells and harmful ones (antigens) and begins to destroy healthy tissue. Symptoms include fever, fatigue, joint pain and rashes. It is important to have an awareness of these skin disorders in order to recognize and understand them in ourselves and others and to ensure public support.

Psoriasis
Psoriasis is an inflammatory skin condition that results from the overactivity of skin cells. The skin cells of a psoriasis sufferer form too quickly and the old skin cannot be shed quickly enough to accommodate it. The results are silvery scales or red itchy patches on the elbows, lower back, and scalp. It is treatable with prescription creams, phototherapy, and oral and injectable medicines.

Vitiligo
Vitiligo causes the body to destroy melanocytes, which are cells that produce pigment. This causes patches of skin to lighten. These lightened patches can appear on the inside of the mouth, the hair and the eyes. In severe cases of vitiligo, skin loses all of its pigment and becomes completely white.
While there is no known cure for vitiligo , treatments are available to restore pigment and even out skin tone. They range from foundation and cover-up to topical medications. Tattooing and skin grafting are other treatment options.

Lupus
Lupus is an autoimmune disease in which the body attacks tissues and organs causing inflammation. Its most common symptom is a butterfly-shaped rash across the cheeks and nose. Lesions may form after sun exposure. Lupus can be treated with immunosuppressants, antimalarial drugs, corticosteroids and anti -inflammatories.

 

Dermatomyositis
Another inflammatory disease, dermatomyositis causes a rash on the eyelids and face, shoulders, back and upper chest and knuckles. Symptoms include trouble breathing, muscle weakness, and difficulty swallowing. It most commonly affects children between 5 and 15 and adults between 40 and 60. It can be treated with corticosteroids and immunosuppressants. While in children, the symptoms may completely disappear, the disorder may be a sign of an additional underlying disease and could lead to lung failure.

Pernicious Anemia
In cases of pernicious anemia, the cells of the body attack the stomach cells and make it hard for the intestines to get the vitamin B12 necessary for the formation of red blood cells. The result is extremely pale skin, bleeding gums, a swollen tongue, loss of appetite and fatigue. It usually responds successfully to Vitamin B12 shots and supplements.

If any of these symptoms seem familiar to you, see the dermatologist to determine whether it is just a skin condition or a symptom of something else. We also invite you to share your experiences and raise awareness about the effects of autoimmune disease.

Asthma

Can Prebiotics Help Asthma?

Stewart Brand, best known for his work as editor of the Whole Earth catalog once said, “If you don’t like bacteria, you’re on the wrong planet.”  It is true that, to most of us, bacteria has a negative connotation, but  lately, we are learning that the certain bacteria may be extremely beneficial.

You may have heard the terms prebiotic and probiotic being tossed around lately.  You may also know that they’re typically found in dairy products like milk and yoghurt.  But what are they?

About 100 years ago,the pioneering Dr. Matternick found that bacteria in yogurt could improve digestion.  He postulated that this ‘good bacteria’ could take the place of ‘bad bacteria’ in the human stomach.  Probiotics are now defined by the FAO/WHO as ” live microorganisms which ….confer a health benefit on the host,” and are most noted as a digestive health aid. Prebiotics are nondigestable carbohydrates.  They are the fuel of probiotics and are usually found in milk and plants and are needed to ensure optimum function of probiotics.   Recent evidence shows that consuming foods that contain prebiotics can also help relieve asthma.  Let’s look at the evidence.

Asthma
There is little doubt that asthma is a big problem in the United States.  It affects about 17.7 million adults and 6.3 million children.  Its symptoms include tightening of the chest muscles, coughing, loss of breath and wheezing caused by inflammation of the airways.

There are two kinds of asthma. Allergic asthma is caused by allergens, like dust, mold, and pollen.  Non allergic asthma is caused by illness, exercise, medications, and stress.  It is this second type of asthma that has become the focus of the new findings.

How Does this Work?
You may have noticed a relationship between the words antibiotic and probiotic.  While antibiotics cure by preventing life, probiotics cure by promote life.  The theory is that  by promoting probiotic activity in the human  body, we strengthen our immune system and enhance our health.

The Study
Investigative research was conducted by the SHAPE Department Research center at Nottingham.  It involved 18 people, 10 with EIU ( exercise induced asthma) and 8 subjects who were asthma free.  They were all given a prebiotic supplement (B-GOS) for 3 weeks, followed by no  treatment for two weeks ,and then were given a placebo for three additional weeks.  These individuals with EIU showed an improvement in lung function after taking the B-GOS as compared with the results of the placebo.

Says Dr. Williams, study leader, says, “Importantly, the level of improvement in lung function that appears after the prebiotic is perceivable by the patient and therefore clinically relevant.”

Prebiotic Foods
In light of the fact that prebiotic foods are known primarily as a digestive aid, it may not be surprising to learn of their high fiber content.  Prebiotic foods include:

  • Raw chicory root:  While available as a supplement in health food stores and pharmacies, raw chicory root can also be found in certain breakfast bars, cereal and breads.
  • Raw Jerusalem Artichoke:  Sometimes know as the artichoke, due to its high fiber content, the only resemblance the Jerusalem artichoke has to the artichokes we are familiar with is the flavor.  It actually most closely resembles ginger  Besides being a great prebiotic, it is also a source of potassium and iron.
  • Cooked Onions:  A slightly less exotic options, cooked onions are a delicious addition to soups and sandwiches and can be sautéed, fried or even caramelized!
  • Raw Garlic:   Not recommended for a first date, raw garlic has almost half the required amount of daily fiber.  Put it is hummus, pasta, or with veggies.
Family Playing On Sofa At Home

The Power Of Family And Anti-Aging

You come home after a long day. Your daughter has just broken her brother’s gaming console and she is threatening to smash his cell phone over his head. Your husband is asleep in your room, the dishes haven’t been done and the tv and air conditioning are both on. You collapse on the sofa, sure that your family is going to be responsible for your premature death and possible loss of sanity. But, according to some studies, the opposite is more likely.

Having More Children Keeps You Younger
According to a recent study done at Simon Fraser University, more children equals long telemores! Confused? Telemores are protective tips located at the end of DNA strands used in the replication of cells. The study found that the number of children a woman gives birth to is directly related to the length of the telemores, hence, the greater the length of the telemores, the greater the longevity of the cells. In short, the cells of women who bore multiple children age at a slower rate! Good news Mommies! The study leader, Pablo Nepomnashy believes that estrogen is responsible. He says, ” The slower pace of telomere shortening found in the study participants who have more children, however, may be attributed to the dramatic increase in estrogen, a hormone produced during pregnancy.”

Marriage Keeps You Younger

Heart
More good reasons to get hitched! A recent study at NYU’s Langone Medical Center found that women and men who were married had a 5% decreased chance of getting cardiovascular disease than their single peers. Doctors speculate that the emotional support offered in marriage may lead to lower blood pressure.

Mind
Robin Simon, sociology professor at Wake Forest University, says that, “hundreds of studies document a robust relationship between marriage and improved mental health.” He goes on to point out that marrieds report being less depressed and are less likely to participate in substance abuse.

Longevity
Having a family seems to be a motivating factor in living a long life. Husbands especially, fare better in the life span department than bachelors. They have a smaller chance of death by suicide and, thanks to their wife’s  attentions, are more likely to get check- ups, stop drinking, and take medications.

Here’s One (or two) For The Singles
In case reading this article has made put you in mind of “Bridget Jones’ Diary” and her descriptions of the “smug marrieds,” listen to this. Marriage isn’t all that glamorous. Married people are more likely to suffer from obesity that bachelors and bachelorettes. A study found that single people exercise more than married people and married men were 25% more likely to be overweight. Talk about, “letting yourself go!” So before you run to the altar and toss out the birth control, remember, people in bad marriages are more prone to bad heart and mental health than those in good marriages. As for the heart and mental health, exercise and eating right will keep your heart in shape and an active social life will keep you happy and balanced. Quality of life takes precedence over all.

Women scratch the itch with hand

The Impact of Medicine On Your Skin

When Veronica Zenker was 13, she took two aspirin to relieve her headache. Within a few days, she was diagnosed with a disease called SJS, a condition in which the top layer of skin blister and peels off. America is a quick fix society. We tend to seek the most convenient and easiest solution to our problems, hence America’s love affair with prescription and OTC medicine. We believe in pills as a solution to all our problems. Got pain? Pop a pill. Depressed? Pop a pill. Nervous? Pop a pill. It’s much less time consuming than visiting a doctor and sometimes less expensive. In addition, most people trust OTC and prescription pills because they have been approved by doctors and subject to FDA regulations. However, those that take these medicines may not realize their potential for causing skin conditions like dryness, rashes and bruising.

Allergic Drug Reaction
Allergic drug reaction is usually caused by orally taken or injected drugs. In these cases, the body’s immune system develops a sensitivity to that drug. Sometimes the sensitivity occurs after only one dose, other times, it takes several exposures. After it occurs, the drug will trigger an allergic reaction, sometimes a rash, in the person the next time the person uses it.

Nonallergic Drug Reactions
Blood thinners, such as aspirin and ibuprofen may cause the blood to leak under the skin, resulting in bruises. In fact, many people who take an aspirin daily to lower their risk of hearing attack develop all over bodily bruises all due to the inability of the blood to clot properly. Overuse of blood thinners, like aspirin, ibuprofen or Aleve, can cause the even tiniest bumps to result in a bruise. These bruises are a signal that the entire body is at risk. Herbal and natural supplements, such as vitamin E, garlic. St. John’s Wort and gingko biloba are also blood thinners and may have the same effects. Lithium, an antidepressant, can cause severe acne. Other drugs can result in photosensitivity or extreme sensitivity to sunlight and ultraviolet light. Bactrim ,  a medication for the urinary tract is an example, as are some antipsychotics and artificial sweeteners. The rash, which resembles and acts like eczema, will not develop immediately after the drug is taken, but from later sun exposure.

Symptoms
Symptoms of drug -induced skin rashes may anything from slight redness and small bumps to peeling of the entire skin. Purple, red, blue and gray discoloration may result and sometimes painful rashes will appear in the mouth.
Allergic rashes may result in itchy hives, watery eyes and a runny nose, and can develop more significantly into symptoms including low blood pressure and wheezing.

Treatment
If you believe you have suffered the effects of a medication on your skin: Discontinue drug use. Most reactions go away when the drug is stopped. Use a corticosteroid cream and antihistamines to relieve itchiness. Severe cases may require hospitalization. Be cautious and consult a doctor if breakouts occur.

Girl is having neck and back pain during working at the desk

Avoiding Neck And Back Pain At Your Desk

Does this sound familiar? You have been sitting at your desk at work in the same position for what seems to have been forever. All of a sudden you move, and then you hear them. As if on cue, your cervical vertebra from C2-C7 start their cranky chorus. As you gently shift, popping and cracking sounds emit from the bottom of your skull all the way down your spine, leaving you drained. Mother always told us to sit up straight, but after hours in front of a computer screen, your posture may not be the first things on your minds. Imbalance in your back and neck may lead to discomfort and, while some may swear by joint cracking, here are some options that may be a bit more civilized.

  • Desk Set Up
    The people at your office should provide you with a comfortable chair and well-placed keyboard tray. The positioning of screens, printers, and the mouse should all be considered and adjusted appropriately to the worker. For employees suffering from work related back and neck pain, some employers will offer standing desks, or will purchase desktop converters that enable the employee to switch between a standing and sitting desk as the day progresses.
  • Sitting Position
    When you are sitting at your desk, make sure your feet are flat on the floor and that your seat allows your thighs to slightly angle downward. This will concentrate your weight on your “sitting bones” and not your lower back and shoulders.
  • Keyboard Tray
    Make sure that when you aren’t forced to slump when you touch the keys. The keyboard should be elevated so that your shoulders don’t sag when your elbows are bent at a 90 degree angle. If the tray is not adjustable, put the keyboard on your desk. In addition, make sure the mouse and drafting pad is at the same height as the keyboard.
  • Adjusting Your Monitor
    The bottom of your computer monitor should be aligned to your chin. Computer monitors tend to be too low, leading to the inevitable hunch. You may want to adjust the screen slightly depending on the height of the monitor. Just make sure you can look straight at your screen.
  • Limit Your Use Of Cell Phones And Emails
    You are more likely to develop upper back and neck pain when using a tablet or cell phone answer emails. If you want the best results for maintaining good posture, stick to working with an actual computer.
  • Walk Around
    Get up and stretch every half hour or so. If you are the type that gets very absorbed in your work, you may want to set an alarm clock to remind you that it’s time to move. Remember that discomfort can have a negative effect on the quality of work, so take one for the team and take a moment to uncoil.
Woman washing hands

Keeping Your Hands Virtually Germ Free

You may have heard of the importance of a good handshake. The quality of the handshake you greet someone with has a lot to do with the impression you make. A firm handshake signals trustworthiness and confidence. The “Dead Fish” can blow an interview before the first question is asked. However, lately the popularity of the handshake is declining. Could it be the fear of germs is rendering the handshake obsolete?
According to a survey by Purell Instant Hand Sanitizer, 55% of Americans are so scared of germs that they would prefer to touch a public toilet seat to shaking the hand of a person who has just sneezed or coughed into it. Not that surprising? Well, consider that 2 in 5 American adults have reported having been reluctant to give someone a handshake due to fear of germs. “But, the handshake is an American Institution!” you cry, “After all, a fist pump can not inform you about a person’s character! How can I tell if someone is trustworthy from a fist pump?”
Clearly, there is only one answer to this. The only way to ensure that handshakes do not disappear forever is for all people to make sure their hands are virtually germ free at all times, and here’s how!

Wash Hands With Soap
The tried and true method is sometimes the best method. Washing hands is completely safe and kills 99% of germs.

Use Ethyl Alcohol Hand Sanitizer
The Ethyl alcohol hand sanitizer is another option. It is antimicrobial, has been around a long time, and is safer than alcohol free Sanitizers, which are known to contain toxic ingredients. However, alcohol dries skin oils and this can be problematic, especially in cold weather. Look for products that contain aloe Vera and Vitamin E help restore moisture.

Resveralife-Keeping-Your-Hands-Virtually-Germ-Free-By-Using-Tissue

Use A Tissue
Try to keep tissues handy at all times; you never know when a sneeze, cough, or congestion may be coming on. If you are caught short, use the bend in your elbow to cover your mouth or nose instead of your hand. Toss the tissue in the trash our as soon as you can avoid infecting others.

Avoid Sharing
If you are avoiding germs, you don’t want to share utensils and clothing with a sick person. Wash your silver utensils in a dishwasher or with soap and water by hand. Disposable utensils are also a good option for avoiding germ transfer. To keep clothes free of bacteria, use hot water and detergent when doing the laundry. Add bleach for some extra germ eliminating power.

Keep Surfaces Clean
Use anti- bacterial or anti- septic cleansers or add bleach to the water. Wear gloves when you clean and dispose of them when you’re done. Avoid touching doorknobs, elevator buttons, telephones and handles in trains and buses.
So, can we all agree that we will do all we can to keep ourselves healthy and keep our hands free from germs? Shake on it?

The girl smiles, perfect with straight and healthy teeth

Secrets Behind Strong Healthy Teeth

According to a survey conducted by Match. com., 42% of singles said they would not date a virgin, 65% would not date someone who was over $5000 in the red in credit card debt, nearly half considered still living with mum and dad to be a deal breaker, and more than half considered the biggest dating “must have” to be good teeth. Of 5,500 people surveyed, 58% of men and 71% of women said that healthy teeth are a big factor in considering a mate. Yes, more than clothes, hair, nails, and tattoos, it seems singles are quite focused on the teeth. Why? Well, in a nutshell, many people associate good teeth with good hygiene and cleanliness and bad teeth with bad breath. Although, this may not always be the case, there seems to be no doubt that strong healthy teeth have their benefits. If you’ve been spending your nights on the couch and think it might have something to do with your campers, here are some secrets behind healthy teeth.

Brush Your Teeth Before You Eat
According to Dr. Chris van Tulleken, cleaning your teeth within an hour after you eat brushes of tooth enamel. He suggests brushing before breakfast and drinking water or chewing sugarless gum to clean debris, sugar and acid from your mouth after eating during the day.

Woman brushing teeth properly

Proper Brushing

  • Brush for two minutes two times a day
  • Work the brush from one corner of your mouth to the other and get all surfaces.
  • Use a pea sized amount of toothpaste and brush softly.
  • Don’t rinse. It will keep the fluoride in your mouth longer.

Avoid Acid And Snacks
When you eat, your mouth stays acidic for about 40 minutes. If you snack often, your mouth is likely to be 60% more acidic than normal and your chances of gum disease and tooth decay increase. Try sticking to regular meals and avoid too many drinks and snacks.

Use Cucumber Mouthwash
Drink water and eat vegetables with high fiber like cucumber, celery and carrots. They will help kill bacteria that cause bad breath.

Go See The Dentist
Safe to say that there can be few horror movies and nightmares that frighten us quite like a visit to the dentist. Here are a few suggestions for making your visit a bit more pleasant.Don’t arrive early. This will only give you extra time to dwell on the horror that awaits and change your mind.Let your dentist know you’re nervous. If you get lucky and he’s not too sadistic, he may go easy on you. You can also ask him to keep the visit as free from pain as possible. Bring some tunes or your tablet. Distractions can be useful!

Avoid Sugar
Try to avoid candy and cereal and avoid acidic foods. If you’re a tea drinker, remember, peppermint tea is better than red berry, which is high in acids.Maintaining good dental health can be tough, but you know what they say about teeth, “Ignore them and they’ll go away!” So with that in mind, as your mom might say,” Go clean your teeth and find yourself a date!”

Man working on a laptop at beach

Keeping Your Feet Comfy At Work

The results are in.  According to a study done by scientists at the Universite de Bretagne-Sud, men respond much more willingly to women in high heels. Women who dropped their gloves on the street were 50% more likely to have a  man deliver it back to her if she was wearing heels. A man is  twice as likely to answer questions posed to him on the street if the asker is in heels.  Women in heels are picked up at bars twice as quickly, their flat- wearing companions.  Does this extend to the workplace?  Are men more likely to respond to demands made by women in the workplace if the woman is in heels?  Many women feel empowered by high heels and find them to be a very useful weapon in the male dominated workplace.  Others consider them a source of discomfort or as reinforcement of stereotypes in which women are viewed as sex objects.  Well, whether vehemently opposed or willing to use any means necessary, we can all agree that heels are not the most comfortable option for feet at work.  So let’s explore some ways we can keep our feet more comfortable, in heels or not.

The Workplace
You have a right to comfort in your place of employment!

  •  The workplace should provide the worker with the option of sitting or standing while working.  If the work cannot be done sitting, a seat should be  made available for breaks.
  •  Foot rails should be provided to allow the employee to shift weight from one leg to the other.
  •  The workspace should provide ample room for the worker to change body positions and adjustable work surfaces should be provided to accommodate people of all heights.

Buying Comfy Footwear
When buying shoes, try and look for the following:

  • The shoes’ inner side should form a straight line beginning at the heel and ending at the big toe.
  • The shoe should not slip off your heel. (Use heel grips if this happens)
  • Your toes should be able to move freely.
  • The shoe should have a wide based, low heel.
  • Buy shoes in the afternoon when feet are at their most swollen.
  • Don’t expect shoes will stretch.  (This is the lie of attractive footwear)

Helpful Tips
If you do find yourself unable to stay away from those lethal heels, here are some tips that might be help keep you elevated and comfy at the same time.

  •  Use medical tape to bind your third toe and fourth toe together. This will help to relieve pressure on the ball of your feet.
  • Apply clear gel deodorant to prevent blisters.  Put it on the parts of the shoes that are tightest to stop the friction.
  •  Have the heels shortened.  Don’t try this at home, but a professional can take up to 1″ off the heels without altering the look noticeably.
  • Put moleskin on tight straps.
  • Widen the toes of your shoes. Fill a plastic baggy with water and insert them in the toes of your shoes.  Place them in a freezer and voila!

Of course, you don’t need heels to perform well in the workplace, but if you find the added height brings the extra confidence you need, you don’t have to suffer with discomfort.  With some savvy and some know how, you can solve all your orthopedic woes.

Woman relaxing in a suana

The Health Benefits of Hot and Dry Heat

You have just finished working out at the gym and you feel like crawling home.  It must have been somewhere between the 50th and 51st set of squats when your muscles just gave out.  Your legs feel like jello.    You decide that some relief is definitely in order if you have any chance of getting to your car and driving home without  requiring medical attention.  You spot the sauna. “This is just the thing,” you think.  I will sit in here, let my muscles relax  a little and I will feel like a new person!” Then you spot the steam room.  Could this be a better option?  You try and think.  What have you heard about them?  You can’t remember which one is which and think that in your condition it may just be a matter of which one is closer.  Well, just so you are prepared for when this happens to you, here’s the breakdown.

The basic difference between saunas and steam baths is that steam baths use moist heat, while saunas offer dry heat.  Both are hot baths which stimulate blood flow, easing pain and promoting healthy metabolism.

The Heat Factor
Saunas are a good deal hotter than steam rooms with the set temperature at somewhere between 160 and 200 degrees Fahrenheit, and a humidity level between 5 and 30%  In other words, it’s a dry heat.  Steam rooms measure somewhere between 110 and 120 degrees but the 100% humidity will make it feel much higher.  Heat rises in both saunas and steam rooms, so the higher you sit, the hotter you will be. Wet and dry heat have a sedative effect which can provide relaxation to those suffering emotional disorder and pain relief to those suffering from a muscular injury.

The Bare Bones
Have you ever gotten on a slide in the hot weather as a child? Perhaps, then you understand why saunas are built of wood and not metal.  In addition, wood absorbs moisture, keeping surfaces cooler and pulling humidity from the air.  In steam rooms, high humidity would cause wood to deteriorate and are therefore made of tile or plastic.  They feature sloped ceilings which allow the water to run down the wall rather than drip on your head.

The Relaxation Factor
Both steam rooms and sauna reduce muscle tension and promote relaxation. They improve circulation and cause occupants to perspire, opening the pores and cleansing the skin,  The humidity of the steam rooms may be more comfortable for people suffering from allergies and congestion, whereas those with conditions that may be aggravated by humidity, like arthritis, may opt for the sauna.

The Expectoration Factor
One advantage that a steam room may have over a sauna is the expectorant effect.  Wet heat opens the sinuses throat and lungs and can loosen and clear the mucus in your nose, chest, and throat.  However, it can also aggravate asthma, which would make a sauna a better choice for asthmatics.

The Myth
You may have heard that both of these baths may remove toxins from the body and help you lose weight.  There is no evidence to support that either removes any toxic chemicals from your body and any weight loss will be temporary, resulting from water weight lost from sweating, so hanging out in the sauna or steam room will not make you svelte, which is why you still have the gym.

So which way do you stagger?  To the dry or to the wet?  The choice is yours, just pick one soon!

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