Spotlight On: Heart Attack

Credit: iStock Our heart tirelessly pumps blood through the body to nourish our tissues with oxygen and nutrients and to remove waste. The human heart has four chambers: the two upper chambers are the left and right atria and contract first. The two bottom chambers, called the left and right ventricles, contract second. The right … Continue reading Spotlight On: Heart Attack

Spotlight On: Stroke

Credit: iStock Every year about 800,00 people living in the U.S. have a stroke. Stroke is a public health concern that costs the U.S. billions of dollars and remains one of the leading causes of death.  A stroke is sometimes called a “brain attack” because it interferes with oxygen and glucose (sugar) delivery to the … Continue reading Spotlight On: Stroke

Spotlight On: Probiotics

Credit: iStock You may notice the term “probiotics” popping up more and more often. These products seem to be everywhere. As you walk down your local supermarket aisles, you will find probiotics in fermented food such as yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha, as well as supplement pills. Additionally, the global market for probiotics is … Continue reading Spotlight On: Probiotics

Spotlight On: The Brain

Credit: iStock Our understanding of the human brain has come a long way since scientists first started studying this intricate organ. Throughout history, the brain has been thought to have different purposes and varying levels of importance, with some thinking that it was not really important at all. But steadily, researchers grew to understand more … Continue reading Spotlight On: The Brain

Spotlight On: Obesity

Credit: iStock Obesity, broadly defined as “a condition characterized by the excessive accumulation and storage of fat in the body,” has long been recognized as increasing the risk of human disease and death. Hippocrates, often called the “father of medicine,” noted in the fifth century B.C. that “sudden death is more common in those who … Continue reading Spotlight On: Obesity

Spotlight On: The Respiratory System

Credit: iStock The respiratory system delivers oxygen to the cells in our body and removes carbon dioxide, the gas our cells constantly produce. Every time you take a breath, you take air in through the nose (nasal cavity) and sometimes the mouth (oral cavity). There are guard hairs inside your nostrils that help cleanse the … Continue reading Spotlight On: The Respiratory System

Spotlight On: Cystic Fibrosis

Credit: iStock Cystic fibrosis is a progressive genetic disease caused by mutations, or changes, in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene. Cystic fibrosis is most common in people of Northern European ancestry, but it occurs in people of all races and ethnicities. People who inherit a mutated CFTR gene from both of their … Continue reading Spotlight On: Cystic Fibrosis

Spotlight On: Enzymes

Credit: iStock Proteins have lots of important functions in the body. One of them is to work as biological catalysts, which means they cause chemical changes or reactions in other substances. This group of proteins, called enzymes, bring about changes in the body while they remain unchanged themselves during the process. Learning the origins of … Continue reading Spotlight On: Enzymes

Spotlight On: Diabetes

Credit: iStock We hear a lot about diabetes, but you may wonder what exactly it is. Diabetes mellitus (its full name) is a chronic disease caused by dysregulation of the endocrine system. Diabetes affects how our bodies turn food into energy. There are three main types of the condition: type 1, type 2 and gestational. … Continue reading Spotlight On: Diabetes

Spotlight On: Asthma

Credit: iStock Asthma is a chronic disease that affects the lungs of people of all ages. Asthma causes repeated episodes of coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing and airflow obstruction. Unfortunately, there is no cure for asthma, but it can be managed to help people with the condition lead a normal and healthy life. Interestingly, asthma … Continue reading Spotlight On: Asthma