Wellness on Wednesday: Cold and Flu Prevention Part 5

There are only two more parts to this series, so it will end next Wednesday.  I will then move on to other topics.  I hope you are finding this series useful.

The 5th link in the Chain of Infection is the Portal of Entry.  A portal of entry can be broken skin, incisions, inhaled through the respiratory tract.  There are a few others, but since we are discussing cold and flu these are the ones we will discuss.

You may have noticed a pattern by now that good handwashing is included in almost every chain in the link.  Good handwashing is the number one way to prevent cold and flu.  Barriers such as gloves and respiratory masks are two other ways to break this link.  BTW gloves and respiratory masks do not just protect you from getting a cold or flu, but protects others from you should you be the person with the illness.   I think sometimes people forget this.  Also getting a flu shot if you have been advised to do so can break this link.  Basic First Aid and personal hygiene are the last two ways to break this link.  If you have overly chapped hands, or small cuts on your hands,  that can allow germs to enter be sure and use a hand lotion to help heal the skin.   Chapped, dry lips and nose can also allow germs to enter.  Use chapstick, and a humidifier at night to add moisture and barrier to protect against germs entering the body.  Get at least 7-8 hours of sleep and maintain a healthy diet will also help keep you and your Immune System in good working order.

You can read the other posts in the series in the archives.

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Memory Care: Learn A New Word A Week

I missed last week’s word, sorry about that.  Sometimes life gets a little crazy.  The word for this week, is, circumnavigate.  Don’t you love big fancy words?  Remember you should be keeping all the words in a journal, or online document.  I find if you write them, rather than type them it helps a lot in remembering them.  Hand writing is becoming extinct.  Write the word, and definition, 10 times each.  Then try to use the word in a sentence, find a synonym, draw a picture, or write a short paragraph using the word as many times as you can.  Then say the word, and definition out loud, 10 times each.  Go back over the other words, repeating 10 times each.  Test yourself to see how many you remember.  Are you following along?  How are you doing?

There are many other ways to help your memory.  If you would like to learn some other methods, use the contact form below to message me for a free meet and greet.  Tomorrow, or Wednesday I will put out my May calendar, and monthly special.



Portion Distortion: Corned Beef and Cabbage and CKD

Updated 3/7/2022: Sign up for my newsletter below, and on March 17, 2022, I will have a special offer for my newsletter subscribers.

Happy St Patrick’s Day.  This is the day that everyone is Irish, and wears green.  But, what about the most popular meal served on St Patty’s Day, Corned Beef and Cabbage?  Can you have it if you have CKD?  Of course, you can!  You just have to calculate how much you can have.  To do that you need to know the nutrients in Corn Beef, or at least the ones concerned with CKD;  Sodium, Potassium, Phosphorus, and Protein.  Read on to find out that info.  I will break it down according to how we made it.  I am unsure of the spice package my husband used, so leave a little more room to add some more Sodium.  I used Eat This Much, to figure out the amount of each item.  Don’t forget if you add anything to it when eating it, like Catsup, Mustard, Butter, whatever you have to consider that as well. Also, cooking methods, leaching, etc can change the nutrient values in food.

For 1 oz of Corned Beef, that is not a lot of corned beef folks, so if you eat 3 or 4 ounces be sure to multiply the amount by 3 or 4 depending on how much you eat. The nutrients are as follows and may not be exact so plan wisely.

Protein:  8 grams

Phosphorus:  31.5mg

Potassium:  38.6 mg

Sodium:  254 mg

Carrots, one serving is 1 cup:

Protein:  0.7 grams

Phosphorus:  25.2 mg

Potassium:  230 mg

Sodium:  50 mg

Potatoes, one serving is 1 cup:

Protein:  8 grams

Phosphorus:  210 mg

Potassium:  1553 mg   this is a very large amount

Sodium:  22 mg

Cabbage, a serving size is 1 cup:

Protein:  2 grams

Phosphorus:  50 mg

Potassium:  294 mg

Sodium:  12 mg

Since all kidney patients are different, one item may bother you more than others.  Like, for me Potassium is not an issue, but Protein and Sodium are.  Phosphorus is a complicated nutrient that I think more education should be centered on. So use the info to adjust how much you eat to stay within your limits.  If you do not know your limits,  or how to calculate what you are eating, message me using the contact form below, to set up a free meet and greet to see if I can work with you to help you learn how to track your intake.   Remember I am not a Dietitian, I am a Health Coach with a background in nursing, and a Kidney Patient.   I will assist you to learn how to calculate what you are eating, find resources that will help you to learn how much nutrients are in each food item, keep a food diary, etc.   Or, if you need to learn to communicate with your doctor to advocate for yourself in making health decisions, like requesting a Dietitian referral, requesting easier to understand education tools, etc.

Check out my Meals with Melissa subscription plan. It is not geared towards CKD, but rather a family, but I include tips to make it more CKD friendly, and one on one coaching can further assist.


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How Does Salt Effect Kidneys?

Brr it is freezing here in FL, today.  No walk for me this morning, but I did do an old aerobic video that was one of my favorites way back in the 90’s.  I will share that in a later post.

As promised, today I would talk about Salt and how exactly it effects the kidneys.  As I mentioned before all humans need some Salt, or Sodium, in their diet for survival.  Most of us, however, consume way more than is needed.  If you are risk for kidney disease, or already have it, then you know you should be consuming a lower salt diet.  I personally feel like anyone can be at risk for kidney disease, and everyone should be consuming less salt.   Unless of course someone already follows a lower salt diet.

Sodium, works along with Potassium to maintain fluid balance in the body. Through a process called Osmosis, Sodium and Potassium pull fluid across the wall.  The fluid comes out of the bloodstream, across the wall, and into collecting channels in the kidney.  Too much Salt, or Sodium,  inhibits this process decreasing the amount of fluid that is removed from the bloodstream, causing Hypertension.  Hypertension can then cause an a decrease of kidney function, by putting strain on the kidney to work harder.  This is a very basic way of explaining how Osmosis works for kidneys.

Something I did not know, but learned while researching this topic, is that higher Sodium levels causes Protein levels in the urine to be elevated.  So, just by lowering Sodium intake Proteinuria can improve.  Having Protein in the urine is not normal, and is an indicator of possible kidney disease. Even though most kidney stones are caused by Calcium, increased Sodium also can be a cause of kidney stones.

As stated in my previous post the maximum daily amount of Sodium is 6GM, or 6,000 mg.  That is quite a bit of salt, but still most people consume closer to 8 GM, or 8,000 mg and still more for some people.  I know it sounds like everyone in the health field is nagging about this, but if you just do some research and see how it effects the body, it might help to convince you.

I didn’t think I was consuming too much Salt.  But, once I started actually calculating it out, my goodness.  Plus, I feel better now that I have reduced my Salt intake.  Remember, I have stage 3 CKD, and I am working hard at getting my kidney function back to stage 2.  I definitely can tell the difference between a high Salt day, and a low Salt day.  Try it and see the difference in how you feel when you become mindful of what you are consuming.

March is Kidney Awareness Month.  Love your kidneys, get checked, lower your risks.  The sooner you know the better, trust me.

If you would like more info about controlling the Salt you consume, or to meet your Salt intake goals, message me using the contact form below, for a free email health assessment and conversation when done via email.

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Image below is from the National Kidney Foundation.



Memory Care Learn A New Word A Week: Bowdlerize

Isn’t that a fancy sounding word?  Say it ten times fast, lol.  I can’t do it.  The word for this week is Bowdlerize.  You should be keeping your words in some kind of a journal. I use Google docs as an online journal.  Make sure you look up the definition, write the word and the definition 10 times each, then say out loud the word and the definition 10 times each.  Then go over all the previous words.  Try to quiz yourself to see if you are remembering them.  If you are not remembering them, try using them in a sentence, and saying them all out loud, again, with the definition.  The more you see it, say it, and write it out, the better the chances of remembering them.  You can study them as often as you like.  Try making a song, or synonyms for the words.  It can be fun!

Remember if you want to work on your Memory skills, use the contact button, or my email address above, to arrange a free meet and greet.  There is no obligation, and if you don’t like what I say you owe nothing.


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