Kirstie Alley’s Colon Cancer Was Diagnosed Not Long Before Her Death

What Women Should Know

Kirstie Alley had colon cancer before she died Monday at the age of 71. Her diagnosis, which her family says the actress only recently discovered before her death, is shedding light on the disease and the importance of early detection.

© Provided by People

Colon, or colorectal, cancer is the third most common cancer in the world, after lung and breast cancers. Though women are at a slightly lower risk than men, about 1 in 25 women in the United States will be diagnosed with the disease in her lifetime.

While approximately 90% of colon cancer cases occur in people over the age of 50, since the mid-90s, the number of new cases has been increasing among adults under 50 years old, according to Fight CRC — a national colorectal cancer advocacy organization that raises awareness about the importance of early detection through screening.

But people with colon cancer fare better when the disease is caught and treated early, before it spreads outside the large intestine or rectum. 

The American Cancer Society recommends that adults 45 and up get regular colon cancer screenings, either stool analyses or colonoscopies. And they urge people with symptoms of colon cancer — such as a change in bowel movements, like increased diarrhea; rectal bleeding; dark stools; unexpected weight loss; cramping and excess fatigue — to get checked out by a doctor. However, they emphasize the need for preemptive screenings, as these symptoms typically only appear after colon cancer has already spread.

While symptoms of colon cancer are typically the same among men and women, some can be easy for women to mistake as symptoms of their menstrual cycle, including abdominal cramping, lack of energy, and excess fatigue, according to Healthline. Women are urged to talk to their doctor if they experience these symptoms and they are unrelated to their cycle or if they experience these symptoms for the first time, even during their cycle.

Additionally, Fight CRC states that 25% of people diagnosed with the disease have a family history. So, anyone with a family history of colorectal cancer should begin screening 10 years before their youngest affected relative was diagnosed.

After an initial screening, a colonoscopy is likely needed every five years. Women should also note that after menopause, risk of all cancers increases.

Story by Vanessa Etienne for people©

The Best Meals to Lower Your Triglyceride Levels

Triglycerides are fatty substances in your blood similar to cholesterol that, in high levels, can put you at greater risk for high blood pressure, stroke and heart disease. Luckily, your diet can help: Creating a meal plan to lower your numbers can support overall health and prevent disease.

Image: GMVozd/E+/GettyImages

Triglycerides are the most common type of fat in your body and come from fatty foods like butter and oils, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM). Eating too many calories or too much sugar, smoking, drinking and certain conditions like thyroid disease can all elevate your levels.

The best way to balance your triglycerides is by limiting processed foods, saturated fats and alcohol. Regular exercise and quitting smoking can also help.

Here’s a meal plan to help you lower your triglycerides.

What’s a High Triglyceride Level?

According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute:

  • Healthy triglycerides:​ Less than 150 mg/dL
  • ​High triglycerides:​ 200 mg/dL and above


Eating meals full of high-fiber foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains and beans can help you manage triglycerides. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends adults eat 14 grams of fiber per 1,000 calories, which typically amounts to about 22 to 42 grams of fiber per day.

Kicking off your morning with a fiber-rich breakfast can also keep you fuller throughout the day, which may support healthy triglyceride levels by helping you eat fewer calories overall. Fibrous breakfast foods can also help lower high cholesterol, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Try one of these triglyceride-friendly breakfast recipes, which may also help lower your cholesterol:

As you’re crafting breakfast ideas to lower triglycerides, some foods to skip first thing in the morning (and the rest of the day, for that matter) include:

  • Refined grains like white bread and white rice
  • Starchy carbohydrates like potatoes or corn
  • Pastries
  • Sugary cereals
  • Sugary drinks like processed fruit punches and sweetened tea
  • Processed meats like sausage


Estimate your daily calorie needs with the help of this Dietary Guidelines for Americans chart, which breaks down how many calories you should eat per day based on your age, sex and activity level. You can then use that number to determine how many grams of fiber you should eat.


Come lunchtime, make sure to include healthy fats in your meal plan for high triglycerides, per the Cleveland Clinic. Fat, along with protein, provides your body with lasting fuel so you feel satiated and don’t overeat, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Many fat- and protein-rich foods also contain niacin, or vitamin B3, which helps reduce triglycerides and cholesterol. They’re also good sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which may likewise help lower your numbers. Some examples include:

  • Meats like chicken and turkey
  • Fish like tuna, halibut and salmon
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Legumes like beans, lentils and peas

Here are lunch recipes to lower triglycerides that incorporate those and other healthy ingredients:

However, limit or avoid the following foods high in trans and saturated fats, which can contribute to high triglycerides, per the Cleveland Clinic.

  • Red meat
  • Whole milk
  • Butter
  • Fast food or fried food
  • Packaged baked goods like cookies and cakes

How Much Fat and Protein Should You Eat?

  • Fat should make up 20 to 35 percent of your daily calorie intake, according to the Cleveland Clinic.
  • Eat 5 to 7 ounce equivalents of protein per day, per the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Ounce equivalents refer to what “counts” as an ounce in the protein group, per the USDA. Examples include an ounce of meat, poultry or fish; one egg; a tablespoon of peanut butter; a quarter cup of cooked beans and a half ounce of nuts or seeds.


Much like breakfast and lunch, eat plenty of fiber, fat and protein at dinner. Consider adding meals like these into your diet plan to lower triglycerides:


Your snack foods can also help lower triglycerides: Eating a variety of plant-based options that include fiber, healthy fats, protein, vitamins and omega-3s can help you get all the nutrients you need to lower your numbers and support overall health, per the Cleveland Clinic.

Simple snack options include:

Steer clear of processed snacks like chips and cookies, which often contain trans and saturated fats that can drive up your numbers. These products also typically have added sugar, which has no nutritional value and may contribute to excess calorie consumption.


Work with your doctor or a dietitian to create a personalized diet menu to lower high triglycerides.


You don’t have to go without dessert. Just remember to limit or avoid processed, high-sugar treats like ice cream, candy and baked goods, per the AHA.

Instead, try some healthier dessert recipes to lower triglycerides, such as:


Remember: Lowering high triglycerides can take months or longer. Committing to healthy habits — like eating nutritious foods and exercising — can help you achieve and maintain healthy triglyceride levels in the long term.

Article By Jill Corleone, RDN, LD Updated August 27, 2021 Medically Reviewed by Janet Renee, MS, RD


12 Foods That Cause Excessive Mucus In The Body (and 14 Foods That Eliminate It!)

If you suffer from a chronic cough that won’t go away, wake up with puffy and crusty eyes in the morning or you have bad breath throughout the day, then you may be suffering from excess mucus production. In fact, there are over 12 foods that cause excessive mucus in the body, some that may come to a surprise and others not so much.

Excessive mucus is a sign that the body is in a state of agitation. It can come from toxins, pollutants, allergies, and food additives, and often involves the lymphatic system, gastrointestinal tract and respiratory system.

The Role of Mucus in The Body

Mucus is produced in order to protect the mucous membranes where they are found. The problem occurs when there is excess mucus production, which can be stimulated by irritants like dust, smoke, other pollution, chemicals, bacteria and viruses, food additives, and food allergens. Excess mucus is produced to capture these particles and shuttle them out of the body – meaning more coughing, stuffy noses, a harder time breathing, and more.

Too Much Mucus and Health Issues

If you suffer from too much mucus production, you may experience, one or more of the following symptoms:

You suffer from a chronic cough that won’t go away
– You are currently experiencing mucus from a cold and/or flu
– You wake up with puffy and crusty eyes in the morning
– Bad breath throughout the day (even after brushing your teeth)
– You have a constant stuffy nose
– Your senses are dulled (you requires lots of salt to make food “taste good”)
– Your senses are not sharp – your mind is foggy and thinking clearly is difficult

These symptoms are often a result of a sluggish digestive tract, respiratory system and lymphatic system, which could be caused by excess mucus production. Although excess mucus production can come from allergies (aka. pollen, pet dander, smoke, dust), household chemicals, pollution, or bacteria and viruses, a major cause of mucus production is from the diet.

Mucus and Your Diet

Certain beverages and foods can trigger excessive mucus production in the body. Two main foods that cause excessive mucus build-up are dairy and wheat. Casein in dairy products (milk, yogurt, cheese, etc.), and gluten in wheat require strong stomach acids for digestion.

To be a little more specific, here is a long list of foods that create mucus in the body:
– Dairy products (yogurt, milk, sour cream, cottage cheese, ice cream, butter, ghee)
– All corn products
– Eggs
– Sugary treats (cookies, cake, pies, pastries)
– Wheat (bread, pretzels, buns, bagels, muffins, etc.)
– Deep fried foods
– All soy products
– Safflower/sunflower oil
– Jams and jellies
– High-fat red meat
– Alcohol
– Caffeine

Eliminate Mucus and Treat Your Body Right

Eliminating foods that cause mucus is key to helping the body function at an optimal pace. Raw fruits and vegetables are one of the best mucus-cleansers out there. When I switched to a high-raw plant-based lifestyle, my mucus issues subsided and my health improved 10-fold.

Aside from that, however, there are also certain foods that can relieve excess mucus. These include:
– Radishes (red, daikon, horseradish, you name it – one of that best mucus-cleansers out there!)
– All leafy greens and herbs
– Cauliflower and broccoli
– Garlic
– Celery
– Asparagus
– Bamboo shoots
– Onions
– Ginger and turmeric
– Citrus fruits (lemons, limes, grapefruits, oranges, kumquats, etc.)
– Pineapple
– Berries
– Brussels sprouts
– Hot peppers


9 Walking Mistakes You Didn’t Know You Were Making

If you’re looking for a way to excuse-proof your exercise routine, look no further: Walking is not only a simple and effective way to stay physically active, it’s also a safer way to improve your health during the Covid-19 pandemic because you can exercise outdoors.

“The biggest benefit of walking is that it’s really accessible to just about everybody,” says Christopher John Lundstrom, PhD, MEd, director of sport and exercise science at the University of Minnesota School of Kinesiology.

It’s no surprise that walking is the most popular aerobic physical activity in the U.S. In any given week, about six in 10 adults report walking for at least 10 minutes.

But what might be surprising is that there are a lot of common mistakes people make when walking for fitness. Some mistakes can lead to injuries. But even minor transgressions can make your walking less beneficial and less enjoyable—which can mess with your motivation and make it harder to develop a consistent routine.

Here are the most common walking mistakes and tips on how to fix them.

© AJ_Watt/Getty Images

Wearing the wrong footwear

When it comes to avoiding injury, it’s essential to wear the best walking shoes for your feet, says Steven Jasonowicz, DPM, a podiatric foot and ankle surgeon at the Illinois Bone & Joint Institute. Wearing the wrong footwear numbers among common walking mistakes.

He suggests wearing athletic sneakers that are supportive, feel good and fit correctly.

Swinging your arms too much—or too little

Use your arms to your advantage. When walking, your arms act as counterweights to your legs, says Lundstrom. And while it’s natural to move each arm with the motion of the opposite leg, “the movement should be just enough so your trunk isn’t moving back and forth and is nice and stable,” says Lundstrom. “The more vigorously you’re walking, the stronger your arm action is going to be. If you’re walking fairly leisurely, you don’t need very much arm motion.”

Try to relax your arms and let them move naturally to avoid this walking mistake.

Straining your neck and shoulders

It’s also important to avoid tensing up. “Your shoulders should be loose,” Lundstrom says. “Over a few minutes, it’s not a big deal. But if you’re carrying tension in the shoulders and arms over 20 to 30 minutes, it can be uncomfortable and make walking a less pleasant experience.”

Try this: Every 10 minutes or so, check in and make sure your shoulders are loose and your arms are moving freely to avoid making this walking mistake. It can also help to think about keeping your neck in a neutral position so that you’re not straining up or down. Think about relaxing your neck and keeping it in line with your spine, and set your gaze on the ground ahead of you, Lundstrom suggests. This will help your posture and reduce any discomfort. It will also help you scope out your footing.

That’s 3 tips. You’ll find 6 more by following the link below.


Cashews: Experts weigh in on health benefits and More

Cashews may lower risk of coronary heart disease, which is the leading cause of heart attack deaths worldwide. Cashews contain heart healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, as well as other bioactive compounds including micronutrients, phytosterols, and fiber. 

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Adding cashews to one’s diet will contribute to the prevention of iron deficiency anemia, which is a concern for individuals following strict vegan or vegetarian diets. Cashews are rich in iron as well as zinc and protein; making them a healthy choice for individuals who do not consume animal products or animal flesh. 

  • Cashew contains vitamin C and zinc which play a vital role in strengthening the immune system protecting against infections and helping in wound healing.
  • Cashew prevents cardiovascular disease as it has good fats called oleic acid, and antioxidants which reduce triglyceride blood levels and protect the heart.
  • Cashew helps in the prevention of some types of cancer such as breast, colon and prostate, due to it contains lycopene, beta-carotene and cardanol which inhibits the proliferation of tumours as it reduces oxidate stress.

Despite this good news however, there are some side effects.

Due to its high oxalate content, cashew may increase the risks of kidney stones when taken in excess by individuals prone to kidney diseases.

  • Casher is an excellent source of magnesium which may interfere with several medications such as quinolone antibiotics like ciprofloxacin. It can also affect blood pressure medications and calcium channel blockers, increasing the risk of side effects associated with these medications and causing nausea and fluid retention.
  • Allergies caused by cashews are increasing every day and may affect young children. This provoke airways constriction producing shortness of breath, treat swelling, itchy mouth and esophagus, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Source: microsofthealthstart

Are Chia Seeds Good for Health? 

The small, black seeds are among the richest plant sources of the omega-3 fatty acid known as alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). Diets high in ALA have been linked to a lower risk of heart disease. Chia seeds are also high in fiber, which may help lower harmful LDL cholesterol levels.

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Chia seeds have several beneficial effects on health. They are rich in omega-3-fatty acids, protein, fiber and various minerals. Aids in the reduction of free radical production, in turn, decreases cancer risk. Aids in metabolism improvement and increases antioxidant levels.


Some Good News for a Change

There’s still a lot of good in the world — and a lot of reasons to be hopeful. (Even when it doesn’t always feel that way.) Here is some good news for you.

Article by Best Life

Can You Still Use an Expired COVID Test?

You wake up one morning feeling off—your throat feels scratchy, your face is a little hot, and you could spend at least eight more hours in bed. Nearly three years into the COVID pandemic, you know what to do: take an at-home test.

You’ve had rapid tests stored in your closet for months, but now they’re all past their expiration dates. But is it OK to use an expired COVID test—even one just slightly past its use-by date—in a pinch?


“The short answer is no,” Ryan Relich, PhD, medical director of the division of clinical microbiology at Indiana University Health, told Health. But that answer depends on the true expiration date on the rapid test—and it may not be the one printed on the side of the box.

Here’s what to know about expiration dates on COVID rapid tests, and when you may be able to still use one that appears expired on the box.

Determining the True Expiration Date of COVID Rapid Tests

When COVID-specific rapid antigen tests were first approved, they hadn’t been around long enough for manufacturers to study their long-term shelf life, according to Sanjat Kanjilal, MD, MPH, associate medical director of clinical microbiology at the Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston and instructor at Harvard University. 

Because of that, test manufacturers and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)—the agency in charge of approving and monitoring such health devices—erred on the safe side. Those initial expiration dates are printed on the tests’ packaging.

But now, the tests have been around long enough to measure their accuracy in the long term, and the FDA has continued to collect data about the tests’ true shelf lives. In some cases, it has approved extensions on the expiration date for a number of brands. 

That’s when you can use what appears to be an expired rapid test—if the FDA has extended its expiration date, according to Relich.

Before you use a COVID rapid test, it’s wise to first check the expiration date, and if it’s past its shelf life, check the FDA website to determine if your particular rapid test’s shelf life has been extended.

The FDA has compiled a list of 23 different at-home COVID tests along with their most accurate and up-to-date expiration dates. The iHealth COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test, for example—the one sent via mail by the government—has an extended shelf life of 12 months. The FDA now says that if the box of that specific test has an expiration date of August 2022, you may now safely use it until February 2023.

But the FDA is the final word on whether a rapid test is still OK to use.

“If the test is older than the expiration date on the FDA website, I would not use it,” said Dr. Kanjilal. 

Expired Tests Lead to Unreliable Results

COVID rapid tests typically contain two components that are subject to expiration: vials of liquid and testing strips.

Over time, those components of the rapid tests can break down, making the test less sensitive and less reliable. The degradation of these tests is why results from expired antigen tests shouldn’t be wholly trusted.

“If a person chooses to use an expired at-home test device, the results should be confirmed with a test that is not expired,” said Relich.

According to Dr. Kanjilal, this goes for both positive and negative test results. “We feel less confident in both directions, it’s just hard to say,” he said. 

The most important factor is the probability a person was infected with COVID before taking the test, he added: “If they have symptoms or had a known close contact, then a positive test is more believable than if it appeared in someone with no known exposures.”

According to Dr. Kanjilal, if you have a positive at-home test but no symptoms and no known COVID exposure, you should definitely follow up with a PCR. If you have symptoms but have a negative at-home test, you should confirm the result with a PRC, which is more accurate, but can take a few days to produce results. 

If you can avoid it, don’t use an expired test at all, Dr. Kanjilal advised. Instead, go right for a fresh rapid test or PCR. 

There are already a lot of variables that contribute to when and if a person tests positive for COVID. “When you add the extra variable of an expired test, the pathways become even more uncertain and complex,” said Dr. Kanjilal. 

If you have expired tests at home that have not had their expiration date extended, you can dispose of them in your normal trash and replace them with new ones.

Article By Kaitlin Sullivan for©


What is the “12-3-30” workout?

Social media personality Lauren Giraldo originally posted her “12-3-30 workout” — which she credits with helping her feel less intimidated by the gym — to YouTube in 2019, but the workout continues to gain followers as a viral TikTok video posted in November 2020 garnered more than 2.7 million likes and 12.6 million views.

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What is the “12-3-30” workout?

Giraldo’s workout is guided by three settings on the treadmill:

  • Incline: 12
  • Speed: 3
  • Time: 30 minutes

According to Giraldo’s TikTok video, she does the workout approximately five times per week and it helped her drop 30 pounds. “I obviously noticed the changes in my body, but I was most happy with the changes that I felt mentally,” she said. “I was proud of myself every day for getting on the treadmill and having my ‘me time’ for 30 minutes. I feel accomplished every time I do it.”

For Giraldo it served another important purpose: getting her comfortable stepping foot in the gym. “The thing about 12-3-30 is it made the gym so much less of a scary place. I feel confident in the gym now, and I sometimes incorporate weights and other exercises into my workout,” she said.

At first, Giraldo couldn’t make it the full 30 minutes. “I definitely had to work up to the 30 minutes. I couldn’t get through it without losing my breath and started out by taking a break after the 10 or 15-minute mark,” she said.

Want to give it a try? Follow these guidelines for a safe and effective workout

“(Giraldo) did well, but most people never make it there because they will get an overuse injury and will be taken out of the game. It’s a great goal, but it’s just not realistic for most of the population,” said Cardone. “If you just do one activity — we don’t have to bash just this one — but whatever activity, if you keep doing it day in and day out, it’s just a set up for injury.”

So instead of jacking that incline way up, here is the safe way to try Giraldo’s workout:

  • Don’t be fooled by the treadmill: “People think the treadmill is so safe; it’s not outdoors, it’s a soft, forgiving surface. But it’s not that different from walking up a hill; you’re not protecting yourself that much more by being on a treadmill as opposed to being out on a road,” warned Cardone. “Thirty minutes walking up a mountain, it’s pretty tough when you think about it. People feel a little overconfident about the treadmill.”
  • Adjust the numbers to meet you where you’re at. “Don’t incline so rapidly, maybe don’t even start at 30 minutes; 3 mph is reasonable, but maybe slow down your duration of workout and incline to work up to that,” suggested Cardone. “Start flat on a treadmill, and do 0-3-30. Once that is comfortable for you, then start inclining, don’t go to 12 right away. Over 3 weeks start slowly progressing your incline, maybe 10-20 percent per week.”
  • If you’re new to fitness, start on flat ground. “If someone is outdoors and starting their workout program, whether it’s walking, jogging, interval training, don’t look for a hill,” said Cardone. “First, tolerate flat and once you’re doing that then you if you want to add some hills into your workout fine, but don’t go looking for hills at the start of a program.”
  • Gradually increase incline: “Slowly progress your incline, start at the lowest setting and it’s a gradual increase, like any other workout in terms of increasing mileage or intensity,” said Cardone. “This workout starts at a 12-degree incline, so I’d say go at 4-degree intervals. So gradually increase it over a 3-week period to get to that 12 degrees.”
  • Don’t do it every day. “Almost whatever the routine is, the general rule is there should be a recovery day or at least alternating with some other activity in order to try to avoid overuse injuries,” said Cardone. “I wouldn’t discourage people from doing some sort of activity most days of the week, just not the same activity. Have a recovery day where you are doing some sort of alternate activity, maybe that might be the elliptical trainer, a bicycle or in the swimming pool, whatever you have available.”
  • Supplement with strength and stretching. The bent posture of walking uphill places stress on your low back, Achilles tendon, calf muscles, plantar fascia and hamstring muscles, said Cardone. “Those are stubborn problems and people don’t want those kind of injuries, once they kick in, they are tough to treat,” he said. He suggested doing core-strengthening exercises as well as stretching those areas specifically to help reduce your risk of injury while walking or running.
  • Consider something lower impact. If you are just getting into fitness, Cardone advised starting with lower-impact workouts. “Bicycling, elliptical trainer, swimming, cross-training type activities, are even safer. Those are great activities to start a workout routine and build up your cardiovascular endurance; you’re not doing a lot of impact, it’s a little more forgiving on the joints and also on muscle tendons,” he said. “So maybe do the treadmill 2 or 3 days a week and the other days these other activities; that is going to keep people out of trouble.”

Source: The ’12-3-30′ walking treadmill routine helped 1 woman lose 30 pounds (

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