- By Laurel J. Kelly
Consumer Health: Caffeine and blood pressure
Caffeine: How does it affect blood pressure?
Caffeine can cause a short, but dramatic, increase in your blood pressure — even if you don't have high blood pressure. Some researchers believe that caffeine could block a hormone that helps keep your arteries widened. Others think that caffeine causes your adrenal glands to release more adrenaline, which causes your blood pressure to increase. Learn more from Dr. Sheldon Sheps, an emeritus Mayo Clinic hypertension and peripheral vascular diseases specialist.
Also in today's tips ...
Stress relief: When and how to say no
Is your plate piled high with holiday deadlines and obligations? Are you trying to cram too many activities into too little time? If so, stress relief can be as straightforward as just saying no. Learning to say no is an important part of simplifying your life and managing your stress. Try these tips.
Weight training: Improve your muscular fitness
Lean muscle mass naturally decreases with age. If you don't do anything to replace the muscle loss, it will be replaced with fat. But weight training can help you reverse the trend at any age. Weight training can help you tone your muscles, improve your appearance and fight age-related muscle loss. Here's what you need to know about improving your muscular fitness with weight training.
Asthma medications: Know your options
The types and doses of asthma medications you need depend on your age and symptoms, the severity of your asthma, and medication side effects. And because your asthma can change over time, you need to work closely with your health care provider to track your symptoms and adjust your asthma medications, if needed. Here's a guide describing the main classes and numerous subtypes of asthma medications.
Shingles vaccine: Who should get it?
Shingles is a viral infection caused by the varicella-zoster virus — the same virus that causes chickenpox. After you've had chickenpox, the virus remains inactive in nerve tissue near your spinal cord and brain. Years later, the virus may reactivate as shingles, causing a painful skin rash along nerve paths. If you're older than 50, your chance of developing shingles increases, but you can lower your risk. There are two vaccines approved for adults 50 and older to prevent shingles and related complications, whether or not they've had shingles already. Learn more from Dr. James Steckelberg, a Mayo Clinic infectious diseases specialist.