5 things that can scuttle good sex – Harvard Health

“The brain is the body’s most important sex organ.” This well-known phrase bears more than a little truth.  Read!


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The truth about fats: the good, the bad, and the in-between – Harvard Health

‘Avoid the trans fats, limit the saturated fats, and replace with essential polyunsaturated fats’


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Shorter sleep may cause dehydration – Harvard Health

‘Adults who sleep only six hours per night may have a higher chance of being dehydrated, compared with those who sleep longer, according to recent research published online Nov. 5, 2018, by the journal Sleep.’ Read!


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#HLWDK Daily Health Tips: Lemons Again!

Q: Good morning Dr. Ketch. Please I want to find out about lemon in water or tea. Kindly assist me with the appropriate information. Is lemon good for a woman trying to conceive? Is lemon good for a woman who is slim but wants to burn belly fat? Is lemon good for pregnant woman? And does lemon in water or tea stop a woman’s period? Thank you as I await your response.

A: Hallos! Thanks for writing in. This lemon water question! I’ve heard it asked in so many different ways. For full disclosure, I love lemon tea (a few drops of lemon in hot water and honey) and lemon slices in my water. I don’t drink these to lose weight, cleanse my system or any of those reasons why people do this. I just love the taste of lemon, plain and simple!

I have unpacked this question into four key questions with answers below.

Q1: Is lemon good for a woman trying to conceive?

A: To prepare for pregnancy, some lifestyle habits can help:

  • Healthy choices in terms of diet (practice portion control, eat lots of fruits and veggies etc), keeping a healthy weight (try and stay within your BMI)
  • Exercise most days a week for at least 30 minutes,
  • Manage your stress etc
  • Folic acid supplements are also great as they help protect baby from defects in their neural tubes (spinal cord)
  • Having sexual intercourse closer to the time of ovulation may be helpful in increasing chances of pregnancy. Does this also increase the chances of having a baby boy or girl? Despite ‘claims’ that male chromosomes swim faster, there’s no guarantee that having sexual intercourse on any particular day, ovulation or otherwise, increases the chance of pregnancy with either sex. This matter is solely in God’s domain except sex selection is done as can happen for some IVF patients.
  • Stay off alcohol and smoking

You would observe that I have not asked you to stay off lemons 😀 This is because it does not affect your chances of pregnancy.

Q2: Is lemon good for a woman who is slim but want to burn belly fat?

A: I’ve been getting a lot of questions on pot bellies, big tummies after child birth or just big tummies…after nothing, full stop:D So, I’ll reproduce part of a post I’d written on this subject (the trio of diet, exercise and stress). Remember that you can always visit my bloghttp://www.chatwithdrketch.com and type in any subject you want to know about in the search box. You will be presented with all my posts on that subject. There’s a lot I’ve written on weight loss et al 

Alcohol is not the only thing that gives you a pot belly!:D Pot belly is caused by consuming way too many calories and these can be from your chilled bottle of beer or from your huge bowl/basin of rice (especially polished white rice) or yam. It is important to know what to eat, how to eat it and how much of it to eat.

The bad thing about tummy fat, is that it is not on the outside. It is actually on the inside, around the organs. So, no amount of sit-ups can touch this fat…exercise can help tighten abdominal muscles (especially for those who just put to bed) but it won’t get to the fat around organs (visceral fat). This fat is associated with some disease conditions like Diabetes Mellitus etc.

A diet full of junk food (meat pies, doughnuts) is unhealthy on a lot of fronts. It contains empty calories which give you calories you don’t need and make you demand even more calories in a short while. They also cause your blood sugar to yo-yo (jumping up) jumping up and down in a way that doesn’t help blood sugar control. A diet that is also full of white carbs like white bread, polished rice etc is also not ideal for the same reason. So what should we eat? A balanced diet…a diet that contains all food groups in sufficient amounts for the body to use them efficiently.

I have had cause to describe the ideal plate of food several times: Half the plate should be filled with vegetables, a quarter with complex carbohydrates like beans, local rice (like Ofada/Abakaliki/brown/wild rice), sweet potatoes, oatmeal etc and the last quarter with protein (fish, chicken etc). Remember that carbs are necessary to provide the energy needed for our daily activities. So, do not ‘demonise’ (:D) them….however, not all carbs are created equal. Complex carbs are superior because they supply energy and fibre and some also supply minerals and vitamins.

Then remember portion control. Reduce the plate size you usually use, if you need to lose weight. This automatically reduces the quantity of food you can eat.

Remember also to make a conscious effort to chew your food properly and take your time. Don’t wolf it down…or inhale it 😀 Chew intentionally so as to give your brain sufficient time to process the signal from your brain which says that you are full. Have you observed that when you rush your food, you move from being very hungry to being completely stuffed! There’s no in-between, where you realize that you’re full before you get to the stuffed part. That’s because your brain didn’t have enough time to process that info before you became ‘over-full’.

Note that, even if a food is considered healthy, it doesn’t mean you should eat as much of it as you want. For instance, beans is healthy on so many levels but it also high in calories and so you still need to stick to the portion described. Moderation in everything!!

Exercise is critical because it makes your heart strong, improves your body’s ability to break down food, resist diseases and generally provides a feel-good attitude. It also helps you lose weight. Mathematically, exercise helps to burn what you have eaten such that, if you do enough and watch your portions, at the end of the day, there will be a food balance between what you have burnt and what you have taken in. If you have not been engaged in any exercise for a long time, please see your doctor before you start any vigorous regimen. A minimum of 150 minutes of exercise per week is essential for good health. Try to get this exercise anyway you can: walking, dancing, skipping, arm wrestling, pillow fights etc. All the activities count and help you keep you fit, trim and healthy. If you use the gym, that’s great. You can get the instructor to put you on a regimen that involves aerobics, strength training (training with weights) and then focus on troublesome spots like your tummy etc. (in that order) or suggest useful regimens that are helpful.

Finally, I will talk about stress because quite a number of us are stressed out. Stress causes the release of a hormone called Cortisol which, amongst other things, causes fat to be deposited around our tummy. So, reduce your stress consciously by figuring out how to better cope with your sources of stress or even eliminating the stresses that you have control over. It’s your life after all.

I suggest you also click on this link to read my post on low glycemic eatinghttps://chatwithdrketch.com/2014/02/16/daily-health-tips-low-glycemic-eating-whats-that/

Q3: Is lemon good for pregnant woman?

A: I loved lemons during my pregnancies. They were the one thing guaranteed to ‘wake up’ my mouth and chase nausea far away. I also had a particular brand of very tart bubble gum, I indulged in 😀 These were key for me because, though I didn’t have the real bad case of morning sickness that sent you to the hospital, brushing my teeth in the morning always sent me into a bout of retching/vomitting. So, I always had a ready supply of the gum or lemon/lime to pop into my mouth once I was done brushing/retching! Not a very pleasant memory ;D

So, if lemons work for you to prevent nausea, go for it. Remember that moderation is key. A few drops (one or two) in a glass of water are enough to provide that tart kick that sends nausea far away. There is a catch here though…remember the heart burn associated with pregnancy. The acid content of lemon might make the heart burn and any pre-existing gastro-esophageal (stomach and esophagus/gullet) problems worse. So, this is all the more reason to be very moderate or stop if it exacerbates an already bad case of heart burn. Wherever and whenever in doubt, please be sure to see your doctor.

So, pregnant or not (including those trying to conceive) lemon water is fine in moderation as described above.

Q4: Does lemon in water or tea stops a woman’s period?

A:The simple answer is no!

Have a good night, y’all 😀

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#HLWDK Daily Health Tips: What Is That Smell??

Have you ever experienced the ‘rotten egg’ (Sulphur) burp? That burp that smells worse than really bad smelly fart? If you haven’t, you’re in luck! 😀 If you have, I’m about to tell you why it happens!

Most burps are due to swallowed air. We are more likely to swallow air when we eat very fast, when we chew gum, drink through a straw or suck on hard candies. ‘Excess gas’ can also be produced as a result of what we have eaten. Sulfur-containing vegetables and foods like avocado, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, nuts, green leafy veggies, cabbage, onions, runner beans etc. typically cause smelly burps. Other culprits include, proteins and beer (yes, beer!) Now these are mainly healthy foods and so we are not about to ask you to stop eating them 😀  Well, just the beer! You can stop that one! 😀

The rotten egg smell of Sulphur burps is hydrogen sulfide gas from eating one of these Sulphur-containing foods or drinks. When you eat Sulphur-containing veggies, the stomach bacteria that works to digest these veggies produce hydrogen sulphide. However, that smelly burp could also be from a stomach infection like Helicobacter pylori or giardiasis. Giardiasis can lead to situation in which parasitic infestation of the small intestine leads to diarrhea, poor appetite, weight loss and smelly burps. Giardia is a serious infection, and if you observe these symptoms, please see your doctor right away.

Treatment is dependent on the cause. If you eat very fast, try slowing down a bit. If you love chewing gum and candies, you may have to give these up for a fresher breath 😀 Try keeping a food diary to identify the specific foods that cause this problem for you and then, reduce those. If it’s due to an infection, your doctor will prescribe the right anti-infective agent. S/he may also prescribe meds that help with digesting veggies and relive bloating

So, there you go!

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Dairy: Health food or health risk? – Harvard Health

Is dairy good or bad? If it’s good, are all types good for you? You should read this!


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Q: Hello Doctor, my Baby Is 3 months and since yesterday he has been pooping blood mucus close to 7 times a day. What is the cause and how can I treat it? He also has some white discharge on his penis

A: Hey! Thanks for writing in and congratulations on your brand new baby!

As you may have noticed, your baby’s poop has gone through some colour changes since birth. Here’s a guide on what to expect:

  • Black or dark green. Newborn poop is called meconium and it is typically black, sticky and hard to remove. Quick tip: after each diaper change, just slather some petroleum jelly on baby’s bottom. This keeps baby’s buttocks nice and clean from meconium. The next time baby poops, the poop will slide right off!
  • Yellow-green. As the baby starts breastfeeding and digesting breast milk, the black meconium gives way to yellow-green coloured poop
  • Yellow. Breast-fed babies typically have yellow-coloured loose stools
  • Yellow or brown. Formula-fed babies have yellow or brown stools with hints of green. Consistency is more firm than that of breast-fed babies

However, blood in stool is never a good idea and should always be checked out in the hospital. Sometimes mums can mistake red-coloured stools due to foods like tomatoes and medicines like amoxicillin for blood in stool. But where in doubt, always err on the side of caution and see your baby’s paediatrician. Possible causes of blood in stool include:

  • Cow’s Milk Colitis. Symptoms include loose, slimy stools which can have blood streaks and starts within the first 2 months of life. To prevent this, please do not give babies cow milk formula until one full year of age
  • Anal Fissure. It is possible that the baby’s stool is hard enough to cause a tear of the skin lining the anus leading to the blood seen with the stool. Exclusively breast-fed babies usually do not have this problem
  • Strep Skin Infection. A Streptococcal skin infection around the anus can also cause blood-streaked stools.
  • Bacterial Diarrhea. Stomach infection with E.Coli or salmonella etc can lead to blood streaks in stool

Regarding the penile discharge, possible causes include smegma and balanitis

Both of these conditions could be due to poor hygiene.

Smegma, a natural penile lubricant, is a cheesy looking discharge that builds up on the head of the penis and under the foreskin, if the penis is not washed daily. It can become a rich culture medium for bacteria, prevent foreskin movement and eventually start to smell. This situation can lead to balanitis.

Treatment depends on cause. Antibiotic or antifungal medicine will be prescribed for infections. Steroids may be used for inflammation. Urinary catheters may be inserted for children with difficulty in urinating. Circumcision helps prevent recurrence of this problem etc. Symptoms typically disappear after about 3 to 5 days of treatment.

In the meantime,

  • Clean the area daily gently retracting the foreskin. If you’re not sure how to do this, please be guided by the medical personnel providing care for your baby.
  • To prevent spread of infection, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after caring for your baby’s penis and as he grows up, teach your baby to do the same

Balanitis is skin irritation of the head of the penis which presents with itching. Causes include:

Bacteria, fungus or yeast (candidiasis)

Irritation under the foreskin caused by urine

Use of shower gels, soaps and other skin irritants

Skin conditions like eczema

Cleaning the penis too much or too little (poor hygiene)

Diaper rash

All the best!

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