While you pay close attention to what goes into your body, are you aware of what needs to come out? From stomach parasites to blackheads and mercury poisoning, The Doctors explains our body's most unwelcome occupants.
The gallbladder is a non-essential organ that works as a storage vehicle for bile, a secretion from the liver that aids in the digestion process. Occasionally, cholesterol will crystallize within the bile, producing stones that can get lodged into one of the gallbladder's ducts, and cause abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting. In some cases, gall ducts are blocked by the stones, leading to cholecystitis, an infection of the gallbladder. E.R. physician Dr. Travis Stork explains the difference between a healthy and an infected gallbladder.
Rachel was suffering from sharp pains in her abdomen, and an ultrasound revealed that her gallbladder was filled with stones. Surgeon Dr. Nicole Bernal performs a laparoscopic surgery to remove Rachel's gallbladder, which involves sending a camera and surgical tools through a small incision to remove the organ. The surgery requires a seven day recovery.
Melanie writes in to The Doctors and says, "or the last few months, I've been experiencing abdominal pain and bloating every time I eat. Sometimes, my stool even looks unusual," Melanie says. "I feel like maybe I have a stomach parasite."
Gastroenterologist Dr. Su Sachar explains that parasites are organisms that live in your intestinal tract and are often contracted through contaminated water and food that hasn't been properly cleaned. In some cases, parasites can enter your bloodstream through the intestinal wall and infest major organs, such as the liver or brain. Fortunately, parasites are highly curable, with some cases only requiring one treatment.
Parasites affect one billion people worldwide. One of the most common parasites is the tapeworm, which can grow up to 50 feet long and can live in your body insidiously for 20 years. Tapeworm symptoms are very non-specific, so if you experience ongoing nausea, abdominal pain or diarrhea, be sure to consult your doctor.
Americans often contract parasites while traveling abroad. Dr. Sachar recommends steering clear of all tap water, including ice, as well as only eating peeled fruits when visiting another country.
Eating certain fish on a regular basis can elevate mercury levels in your blood and cause mercury poisoning. Symptoms of mercury poisoning include burning and itching of the body, an irregular heartbeat and high blood pressure, as well as eating food at a faster pace than normal. The Doctors test Shannon's mercury levels. See if eating sushi on a daily basis is dangerous.
Toxic mercury levels can also cause birth defects, so women must check their levels before conceiving. While pregnant, women are advised to not eat sushi and to limit their servings of seafood to one per week.
Mercury accumulates in muscle and higher levels are often found in leaner selections of fish.
Fish containing high mercury levels:
• Bigeye tuna
• Bluefin akami
• Yellowfin tuna akami
Fish containing low mercury levels:
• Canned light tuna
Cilantro is a highly effective and natural solution to ridding your body of metals.
• Finely chop cilantro into 8 tsps
• Steep in one quart of boiling water covered for 20 minutes
• Once cooled to a comfortable temperature, sip this tea throughout the day for two to three months to gradually rid your body of mercury
Sneezing is the body's way of telling you that something needs to come out of your nose. Holding in a sneeze can build up pressure and cause damage to your head. "Don't be shy, just let it go," plastic surgeon Dr. Drew Ordon says.
Phlegm is a frontline defense mechanism for your respiratory system. It catches germs, dust and viruses, and moves up into your nasal cavity to flush out these foreign elements.
How to Manage Phlegm
• Don't swallow it — It is meant to evacuate unwanted elements in your body and needs to come out.
• Don't sleep on your back — When you have a cold, try to sleep on your side so phlegm can easily come out.
• Don't use cough suppressants, as this keeps phlegm from doing its job. Instead, use an expectorant to break up phlegm and get it out.
• Exercise regularly and take deep breaths to maintain your airway.
• Use the mucus wheel to see what your nasal fluids say about your health.
Combating The Body's Bothersome Conditions