What is Angioedema?

Angioedema is a potentially serious medical condition, related to hives. Angioedema may include large welts on the skin forming a rash, which can be itchy, warm feeling, and/or painful.

Affected areas are often swollen, with the swelling at a deeper layer of the skin than in the case of hives, and also sometimes occurring internally.

Externally, angioedema occurs most often on the face around the eyes and lips, and is also fairly common on the neck, hands, feet, and genitals. Internally, typical locations of swelling are in the throat, mouth, intestines, and bowels.

Internal swelling from angioedema can be particularly dangerous. Swelling in the digestive track can cause severe abdominal pain due to cramping.

Swelling of the throat, tongue and lungs can impair breathing, leading to respiratory discomfort, lightheadedness, loss of consciousness, and even death.

Like hives, angioedema is the body’s reaction to the release of histamine and other chemicals into the bloodstream. Most often this is an allergic reaction.

You may like: Tips for Staying on the Zone Diet

Common allergens that can cause an outbreak of hives or angioedema include foods such as milk, peanuts or shellfish, medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen or penicillin, and other substances such as latex, pet dander or pollen.

In addition to allergies, other possible triggers for hives or angioedema include exercise, heat or stress, as well as certain medical conditions and treatments such as cancer, lupus or blood transfusions.

There is also a rare hereditary form of angioedema, where the person has low levels or abnormal functioning of C1 inhibitor blood proteins. An outbreak of hereditary angioedema is usually not accompanied by a hives-like rash.

Food processors help cooking healthier meals.

In diagnosing angioedema, a doctor will attempt to ascertain what is triggering the outbreaks.

The patient can assist the process by keeping written records of outbreaks, along with what other possibly relevant factors were present at that time, such as a new pet introduced into the home, a change in cosmetics used, some new vitamin supplement, a shellfish meal, etc.

The doctor may also perform an allergy skin test, where tiny portions of purified allergen extracts are placed on the skin or injected under the skin, to see if the patient reacts to any of them.

A doctor who suspects hereditary angioedema may also perform blood tests to check the levels of the relevant blood proteins.

Hives and angioedema are typically treated with antihistamines-prescription or non-prescription-to reduce the itching and swelling. Because angioedema can be more severe, a doctor may prescribe a corticosteroid drug.

In an emergency situation where the patient is unable to breathe, an injection of epinephrine may be necessary.

Hereditary angioedema is less likely to respond to antihistamines or corticosteroid. In that case, doctors will sometimes prescribe androgens, or medications such as Berinert, Cinryze or Ecallantide that help to regulate the levels of blood proteins.

Usually angioedema will clear up without leaving any permanent marks or disfigurement. Many outbreaks are quite mild. However, due to its potential to obstruct breathing, it must be taken very seriously.

A person who experiences chest tightening, difficulty breathing, throat swelling or lightheadedness should seek emergency treatment immediately.



Tips for Staying on the Zone Diet


Ten years ago I stood in my bathroom, getting ready to go to an informal Christmas work party. The bathroom had windows on both sides, and for some reason I had never glanced at my back when I was washing my face or applying makeup.

That night I finally looked. My butt was huge. I was shocked. The next day I purchased The Zone by Dr. Barry Sears and started the diet the day after.

Yes, I said the day after. A week before Christmas. I was not only fat, I was not that bright either. But, that being said, the Zone changed my life. Before reading The Zone, I believed that fat was our enemy.

I downed box after box of those awful fatless cookies in the green box that I think Oprah recommended. I ate pasta and rice and agonized over my weight. It wasn’t my fault. Nobody knew.

After being on the Zone for two months (yes, two months) I had lost about 30 pounds. I started at 185. Three months later, I had lost another 20, which is where I slowed down as I was suffering from “lollipop head”; my head was disproportionately larger than my body.

Every woman I worked with or was related to, even one of the ladies who worked the front desk at my apartment complex, went on the Zone. About 15 to 20 women in all. All but one gave up.

Why? It was too hard. And it was. The first Zone book had you doing math at every meal to make sure you were getting the proper balance of protein, carbs and fat. Dr. Sears loosens up a bit in later books, urging you to employ the “eyeball method”.

Please make sure, if you’re interested in the diet, to go to the Zone website or purchase one of Dr. Sears’ books. I just wanted to share a few tips from my success on the Zone.


Cottage cheese

Snacks are the most important part of the diet, in my opinion. Before I started the Zone I ate all day long. It would have been very difficult for me to go to a strict 3 meals a day plan. Make sure your snacks are something you enjoy eating.

My favorite is cottage cheese and pineapple. Easy to put together, and I don’t have to cook anything.

I also purchased a low carb bread (ten years ago, no one had gone rabidly anti-carb yet, so there weren’t many choices. I used a “light style” bread, which I think is still good) and deli meat, and made myself a half sandwich for a snack, which worked just fine.

Make sure your snacks are easily made so you can assemble them quickly.

Preparing meals ahead of time

A time saver and a great idea. I cook a mean turkey chili which fits the Zone requirements. I make enough for about 4 days, and stick it in the fridge. That way, I can easily tote it to work or just heat it up at home (and a small bit makes a good snack).

If your lunch is already prepared, you won’t be tempted to eat out or just grab anything from the fridge. This can be a lifesaver.

Have go-to meals

This goes hand in hand with the above. After a while, especially if you’re single, you will get very tired of cooking in the Zone all the time. So, I suggest having a go-to breakfast, lunch and dinner. Particularly something you’ll always have on hand. For example, something frozen or canned.

I loathe making breakfast. There’s something about being domestic before noon that gets my back up. So my breakfasts are always go-to meals. I rotate between three menus, all of which contain foods that I always have around and/or are not as perishable as fresh.

Oatmeal and eggs if I’m feeling housewifey (I think oatmeal’s half-life is 150 years) and a fridge doesn’t look right without eggs in it, so they’re always around.

A breakfast burrito when I’m feeling half housewifey, the whole wheat tortillas can be kept in the freezer and filled with your scrambled eggs then briefly heated in the microwave. And cottage cheese and dried fruit when I’m grouchy and don’t want to look at a stove.

Eat foods you dig


This may seem like a no brainer, but almost all of the women I mentioned above purchased pounds and pounds of vegetables that rotted away because they didn’t like them. Ok, I’m assuming we’re all adults, or close to it.

There has to be ONE vegetable you like. Mine happens to be broccoli. I also like snap peas. If I were a smarter person, I would have invested in a broccoli farm. Alas, I did not.

And the great thing about the Zone is that you can eat anything you like, you just have to eat it in the proper proportions. For example, you can have 2 and a half cups of broccoli, or a quarter cup of rice. Hm.

If you have a family

My husband has a high metabolism. My husband may have the finest example of a metabolism in the Western world. He is beyond the Zone. It’s enough to make a woman who has struggled with her weight her entire life sick.

But I love him and he has to be fed. And he can’t live on broccoli and protein. He needs the pasta and rice, the potatoes and yams.

And all I can say is, you’re going to have to suffer. Unless of course, your husband’s a chub. Unfortunately, most of us will be making spaghetti we never eat, and rice we can only stare at longingly.

But, from experience, I can say that it’s all worth it. You will drop the weight and you will drop it fast.

There’s always tomorrow

The Zone is not the Atkins diet, the grapefruit diet, the soup diet, or that awful crash diet where you have to eat a lot of beets. If you screw up, just eat in the Zone at your next meal. Try not to beat yourself up too badly.

Do what I do, and take it out on your husband and his freakish metabolism.


Why Do We Need a Clean Earth?

Did you know that London’s cabdrivers are bound by law to keep their taxis clean? Failure to do so may result in their being banned from the city’s streets for a period of time. Even when road conditions are bad and most cars stay dirty for days on end, the London taxicab is spotlessly clean. The vehicle’s shiny surfaces evoke in the driver and his passengers feelings of pride and pleasure.

Clean Earth

Similarly, when our home, our clothes, and our belongings are clean, that promotes in us a feeling of well-being. Woe betide the schoolboy whose mother sees him come into the house and leave a trail of mud on the carpet from his dirty boots!

In fact, good health depends a great deal on personal cleanliness. Our body requires regular care and cleaning to remove dirt that would provide a foothold for disease. Commercial companies make vast profits selling cleansers, detergents, polishes, soaps, shampoos, and disinfectants that we use to keep ourselves and our immediate surroundings clean.

Surely, most people are conscious of the need for cleanliness. But if you live in a city, you know that this is not the whole story.


Danger-PollutionCity dwellers are well aware of pollution and the defiled environment. They see it in uncollected garbage, in litter carelessly left on the streets, and in crude graffiti on public buildings. They smell it in the choking fumes from dense traffic and in the acrid smog that plagues some cities.

Perhaps that is why many who live in cities try on occasion to spend time in the countryside. They enjoy filling their lungs with clean air, perhaps even drinking crystal-clear water from a mountain stream. Others like to go to the beach and relax on the sand or cool off with a pleasant dip in the ocean.

Wait a minute, though! Dirt and pollution lurk there too. ‘How can that be?’ you ask. ‘It looks so clean.’ Well, let us look a little closer at that “clean” air and “clear” water.

Moral Pollution

Moral pollution includes drug abuse, which is more widespread than ever. Pop stars, stage and screen idols, and even apparently respectable businessmen, have become the objects of scandal due to their dependence on drugs.

Moral pollution also includes sexual immorality, which can be the cause of broken families, divorce, abortions, as well as burgeoning epidemics of sexually transmitted diseases, including the sinister scourge of AIDS.


Hypno-Birthing: A Holistic Alternative to Lamaze

My Experience with Painless Labor-Hynobirthing

As soon as I found out I was pregnant, I wanted to have a water birth, a common method in Europe that was popular in the 70s. Unfortunately, there were no facilities that offered water birthing anywhere close to where I lived, so early on I realized I had to find an alternative method, as I had no desire to duplicate the fiasco so many couples have with Lamaze.

Painless Labor-Hynobirthing

My father and husband together came up with the idea: hypnobirthing! I was thrilled to find a hypnotherapist who lived ten minutes away. My husband came to classes with me, but we didn’t practice the breathing exercises together nor did he listen to the audio tape that I conscientiously turned on once a day during my ninth month.

I was apprehensive as my scheduled inducement date approached. We went for one last private session the day before d-day, during which my hypnotherapist put me into a relaxed state that had me walking on clouds for most of the next 24 hours. We went for a walk on the beach and I felt very much at peace and prepared to face the next day.

By the time my coach got to the hospital, I was already in labor. In response to her prompting I could immediately go into a very relaxed state during which I was well aware of what was happening, but remained incredibly relaxed and pain-free.

As the contractions became more pronounced I added visualization techniques to my breathing that carried me through the most painful stages. It took a lot of concentration but eighteen hours of labor were virtually pain-free. And not once did I want to yell at my husband, except maybe after the baby was born when he complained about how tired he was.


Going Green with Eco-Friendly Makeup

Going Green with Eco-Friendly MakeupEco-friendly makeup products are not only better for our environment but can also be better for your health. These makeup products eliminate the use of certain chemicals that are harmful to your skin. Regular makeup products usually contain mercury, lead and petroleum. Exposure to these chemicals in your makeup can cause skin rash, headache and may be linked to cancer.

Eco-friendly products are free of these harmful chemicals and completely safe. All forms of makeup are available organically, including foundation, concealer, lipstick, eyeliner and blush.

Five of the most popular eco-friendly makeup products from Saffron Rouge are:

  1. Organic Moisturizing Mascara,
  2. Dr. Hauschka Lip Gloss,
  3. Dr. Hauschka translucent makeup,
  4. Pure cream stain
  5. Eyeliner Duo.

Organic Moisturizing Mascara is a product created by NVEY Eco Cosmetics and is very popular right now. This product is enriched with vitamin B5, nettle, and Horsetail to condition and build the lashes to their full potential. Unlike messy wet mascara, this is a dry mascara formula.

It consists of algae extract that allows it to stick all day long and is easy to wash off with soap and water. This product from Saffron Rouge is also available in three different colors which makes it even more popular.

Dr. Hauschka Lip gloss is very well known and popular organic makeup. It was created by Dr. Hauschka and is available through Saffon Rouge. This lip gloss is known for its shine and creamy texture and lasts all day.

It is made from several ingredients including beeswax, apricot kernel oil and mango butter. These ingredients are known to help retain moisture in the lips and help fight chapped or dry lips.

Dr. Hauschka translucent makeup is healthy for your skin and creates a flawless look. It is a liquid foundation that hides discoloration of the skin, as well as blemishes and redness. This makeup has several ingredients including macadamia oil, avocado oil, jojoba oil, rose wax, and Shae butter.

This product also contains marsh mallow and carrot extracts for added smoothness. It does not contain artificial preservatives or chemicals.

Pure Cream StainAnother popular makeup item being sold right now is known as Pure Cream Stain. It is used to add shine and pigment to the lip and cheek area and is made of all natural ingredients. The ingredients in this mixture include rose wax, jojoba oil, vitamin E, and chamomile. It blends easily and is used on every skin type, which adds popularity to it. It is available in seven different shades.

The Eyeliner Duo, also created by Dr. Hauschka, is organic and mineral based. It is an eyeliner pencil that is known for highlighting and brightening the eye area. It has two separate ends; one end has a gray color to make the eyelashes appear thicker and the other end has a white color that is used to make the eyes shine when applied to the inner lashes.

The ingredients in this mixture contain black tea leaf extract, anthyllis, and witch hazel. This, like the rest of these makeup products, is great for both the environment and healthy for your skin.