|by Rick Moore|
|Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll
It's been pretty nice here latelyweather wise, that is. Nick and I just got back from Dallas where it's still in the hundreds (when I landed it was 104 degrees). When we left Dallas it was in the lower 90swoo-hoo! But our temperatures here are much lower and, for me, easier to take.
And just think, cold and flu season is just around the corner. Believe me, it will be here sooner than you think. As of this week you may notice a big difference when you go to the store or pharmacy to get your cold or flu remedy. A new state law right here in Delaware requires that all cold and allergy medications containing pseudoephedrine and ephedrine are to be placed behind the prescription drug counter. That's right. A prescription is not required, but you will have to show the pharmacist a picture ID and sign your name to buy them. In addition to that, the pharmacist will limit you to 9 grams of medication per monthyes, they can keep a track record of your purchases. The 9 grams of medication is equal to about 300 30-milligram tablets.
So what's the big deal you ask? Well, according to our legislators and police enforcement officers, it is a big deal indeed. It's called methamphetamine or just plain "meth."
Sales of these medications are being scrutinized because the chemicals in them can be used to manufacture methamphetamine, which is the highly addictive, illegal drug of choice among users in the Midwest and on the West Coast. It seems that meth making in some places of the Midwest and Southern California has become epidemic. There were 2,788 labs that law enforcement closed in the state of Missouri, the country's leader.
Cocaine and heroin are the most problematic drugs along our I-95 corridor. This is because of Delaware's location to the Philly-Baltimore-New York connection. Throw in DC for that matter.
According to the director of the special investigations unit for the Delaware State Police, meth is not a real problem here, but they are keeping their eyes open. So, the next time you happen to run out of your cold or flu meds and need more, don't be surprised if you find yourself getting friendly with your local pharmacist because your meds are behind the counter, not in front.
I was recently asked by a client to explain the difference between good and bad cholesterol and how could she remember which is good, bad, or indifferent (just kidding). Let's go over this again to try and put it all in layman's terms. HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol is the "good" one. The good cholesterol number should be as high above 40 as possible. This good form of cholesterol takes the "bad" form of cholesterol (which is called LDL) particles back to the liver, preventing them from sticking to the blood vessel walls. You need more of the HDL cholesterol in your blood to lower the risk of heart disease. And here's a hint to remember which is which. Say LDL rhymes with hell and HDL is just swell. Hey, it works!
You know that causes low HDL levels in us? Well, could be because of a very high carbohydrate consumption, physical inactivity ie. laziness, obesity, smoking cigarettes, type 2 diabetes, genetic factors, even certain medications we ingest.
So, how do we get our HDL up and running. Well, we need to get off our duffs and start a regular aerobic regimen of activity. We can all benefit by cycling, jogging, and speed walking. How difficult is that? Not very. And guess what? When we quit smoking and lose excess weight, our HDL levels generally increase. It's also been reported that you can raise HDL levels with a nip or two (1 to 2 drinks a day) of alcohol. I, personally, don't recommend this because many folks are taking medications that may be adversely affected by alcohol. Check with your doctor on this one to be sure.
Did you know that Niacin, a B-Vitamin, has also shown promise to boost your HDL levels. But be very aware. There could be some nasty side effects, say like, skin itching, rashes, or flushing, and too much Niacin in your system can lead to liver toxicity. Check with your physician for that one for sure, as it can be brutally nasty. Now, these are some ways we can all raise the good
(HDL) cholesterol in our blood. But did you know that a big factor or maybe even the biggest factor for some of you, is your heredity. Many of you look to be in perfect shape. You lift weights, you run or jog, you watch your diet carefully and do what you should do to live the "fit life," but your parents or even your grandparents are to blame for the lousy numbers of your cholesterol count. It seems that's the problem with my hubby, Nick. The picture of absolute health, a stickler with his diet and exercise regime, but a lousy cholesterol count. Why, even his siblings are in the same situation as Nick. But for many of us, there are new and useful drugs that will help check your numbers. Some of us may fight the reality of taking drugs to correct or help with those numbers, and to those people I say that they need to have bloodwork done on a regular basis to prevent any underlying problems. Since the weather is getting cooler, this may be the last column I can say "see you at the beach"and mean it.
I betcha a lot of you are wondering, hey! Where's all the dirt on the sex, drugs, and Rock & Roll? Well, I didn't have a title for this column but I'm sure it caught your attention and got you to read this. Was I right?
Rick Moore is a personal trainer certified by the American Fitness Professionals & Associates. Visit him at www.ricksfitness.net.
LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth, Vol. 15, No. 14 October 14, 2005