May 11, 2012

5 Weirdest Diseases around the World

Conditions that cause rarities in development aren’t commonly discussed. However, there are a lot of deformities and disease out there that are definitely interesting. Here are the top 5.

1. Congenital Insensitivity to Pain

What would it be like to live without pain? It may sound like something you’d prefer, but if you think about it, pain is useful. It tells us when something is wrong. What would happen if you touched a burning pot, but couldn’t feel the pain? You may be burned badly before noticing. Those with congenital insensitivity to pain do not feel pain. This causes the need for constant supervision while young and vigilance as an adult. Many die at a young age because of this rare disease.

2. Human Werewolf Syndrome

This condition causes lanugo, the hair that newborns have at birth, to persist. Typically, this hair falls off within a few months of birth, but with this disease, it continues to grow, causing the person to be covered in hair except on their hands and feet. Over time, it may eventually disappear, or it could get worse, depending on the case.

3. Elephantiasis

This condition causes one member of the body (arm or leg) to grow out of proportion to the rest of the body. It is caused by various parasitic worms that are transmitted by mosquitoes. Because of the mode of transmission, this disease shows up primarily in third-world countries. Public health practices, like the use of mosquito nets, are being put into place to reduce the transmission of these parasites.

4. Methemoglobinemia, or Blue Skin Disease

How would you like to have blue skin? It may sound alien to you, but it’s an actual condition that is caused by the blood having too much methemoglobin. This increased methemoglobin makes it difficult for the blood to release oxygen into tissues, causing the skin to look blue. The most famous example is the Fugate family of Kentucky. Because of genetics, this condition had been passed down through the Fugate family since the 19th century.

5. Foreign Accent Syndrome

This happens when someone’s natural accent changes so that their native language sounds like it’s being pronounced with a foreign accent. Typically, it’s caused by some type of trauma to the brain areas that control linguistic patterns. In one case, a British woman began to speak with a Chinese accent after a severe migraine. Other cases have been caused by severe head traumas or strokes.

These are just a few of the most fascinating diseases around the world. Have you heard of any other rare diseases that should be added to this list?

Sick and Tired-the health care crisis in america

Of all the problems in America, one of the most debated and controversial is the health care reform bill. Obama made it a personal mission to bring healthcare to everyone. Some people see it as a blessing, others as a sign of socialism.

One woman interviewed stated she hasn’t had health insurance in years due to her epilepsy and the expensive medicine she needs. She now has to go through a city hospital for assistance instead of being able to choose her doctor and get her medicine at an affordable rate.

On the other end of that, Virginia District Judge Henry E. Hudson believes the new bill is unconstitutional because it forces Americans to purchase healthcare. His theory is some people don’t have it because they may not need it or just can’t afford it, no matter how affordable it is.

As with most things in life, nothing is ever black and white. Many people don’t know all the facts behind the bill. Not surprising as it’s over a thousand pages long. Here are a few highlights, as well as pros and cons of the health care law.

  1. Everyone will be required to have health insurance by the year 2014. As of now, only children are entitled to health insurance despite pre-existing orders. Adults will not have that right for another two years.
  • Pros of that is the reform would push costs down while tightening the reins on medical inflation.
  • Cons is the chance that hospitals providing Medicare may back out as they would lose money when the bill fully goes in to effect.

2.   Employers must ensure health care is provided to their Employees.

  • Pros is more workers will be secure knowing their medical needs are covered.
  • Cons is employers have to pay a fine if they don’t offer coverage.

Whether you are a critic or a believer, this debate will continue for years to come.

Eat Cheap and Stay Healthy

Are you eating on the cheap? If so, you are not alone. The price of food has been steadily rising ever since the economy went bad and many Americans are forced to alter their eating habits because of it. Sadly, once you start paying attention to the cost of food you will quickly notice that it is cheaper to be fat than it is thin. The following tips will help you keep your weight in check without draining your wallet.

Stay away from the $1 menu. It can be tempting to scrape up your change and buy a few cheeseburgers to fill up the family, but that is a huge mistake. Those cheap items can contribute to obesity, diabetes and high cholesterol. It is better to get a box of whole wheat pasta and a jar of tomato sauce and feed the family for a few dollars.

Consider buying your produce canned or frozen. Fresh produce is often pricey and many people avoid buying it because of that. Getting your fruits and veggies is important to your health, but they can also help fill you up. Plus, they are less fattening than many of the alternatives you might replace them with.

Get your protein from a less expensive source than meat. Beans, eggs and peanut butter all have protein. Plus, if all you can afford is a cheap, fatty piece of meat, alternative protein sources are much healthier. If you can’t afford lean meat cuts you are better off eating beans, eggs or nuts for protein.

Stop drinking your calories. Soda, juice, coffee and tea can be high in calories. Consider drinking more water. Not only is water essential to human health, but it is better for your waistline and it doesn’t cost a thing. Rather than buying bottled water you can save a small fortune installing a point of use water filter on your sink.