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Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Don't Ignore Breathlessness at Everyday Tasks │ Placebos Proven More Effective than Antidepressants │ One or Two Drinks Daily Reduce Risk of Ischemic Stroke and Metabolic Syndrome

My wife Jack arrived home from Vancouver early last evening, and was to remain here for the night.  We never talked much, and in fact I think that she even lied down in bed for awhile as she waited for some pork ribs she had in the oven to cook.

It wasn't too late an evening for me ─ after I realized that she had gone to bed for the night, and I followed suit, it mightn't have been much after 11:30 p.m.

After my first block of good sleep ended, it was around 3:00 a.m. when I visited the bathroom and also drank some water.

Towards 6:30 a.m. my light sleep was disturbed when she started muttering and getting up, and I then realized that I might have heard two raps on our bedroom door ─ her eldest son Tho apparently wanted her to take him to the SkyTrain so he could get to work off in Burnaby.

He is under a driving licence suspension.

After she had readied and the two drove off, I rose and worked at clearing out my semi-blocked nasal passageways.  However, after the effort I put into it, I was concerned that I mightn't be able to return to sleep that late in the morning.

I settled back into bed, and tried relaxing as I waited for Jack to return home and get herself back to bed.  It wasn't all that long a wait.

Thankfully, some sleep came.

I had a bit of dream in which Jack was her playful previous self, and was accusing me of passing some "bad wind."  I was in bed, and she had climbed atop of me, with her face near to mine and seeking some kissing.

It was actually a lovely brief episode of sheerest fantasy, for that Jack no longer exists in my life and marriage.

I have 8:41 a.m. in mind as the time when I made a check and decided to rise for the day to get started at the edit work I am doing on an old post at my Siam-Longings website.

I noticed that Poté was not in bed when I went downstairs to make my morning's hot beverage ─ he must have had to start work early today.  At least he came home last evening without his girlfriend ─ probably because they both knew that Jack was home.

Unfortunately, I had to stop working on the post edit shortly after 11:00 a.m. after Jack had gotten up and gone wordlessly downstairs to begin fussing about in the kitchen, and soon cooking.

She even did some housework in the boys's den area, and cleaned out much of the boxes and other things stored on shelving in the area serving as Tho's bedroom.

He had an encounter on Saturday with a mouse that seems to have moved in ─ Jack first brought its presence to my attention on December 26, and my younger brother Mark discovered its presence on his own early in the morning of December 28 whilst Mark was having his morning coffee before heading out to work.

As yet, we have not gotten any traps.

Jack spoke not a word to me until she had gone upstairs and was getting ready to leave.  She wanted me to transfer some money into her account because a $299 life insurance payment will be applied against her account around the 9th, and she never even had half that figure in her account.

When we both came back downstairs, she explained what she had prepared for our supper.

And then as she was putting on her boots, she said that she would be back sometime on Sunday.  Tho has to appear in traffic court on Monday, so she will be driving him...and probably sitting with him as he awaits his appearance and judgement.

He had been caught driving a month or two ago while under suspension.  He already knows that his suspension went from the initial three months to a full year because of that offence, but now he has to go to court for it.

Jack says that he expects that he will likely receive a $500 fine.

It was not yet 12:30 p.m. when she left to return to Vancouver this brilliantly sunny, cold day.

Late in the noon-hour I went out to the backyard shed to engage in some exercise.  As yet, the snow I have been tracking into it the past three or so days has not yet melted ─ it is too cold.

Poté surprised me by walking into the house around 3:15 p.m. while I was making my afternoon's hot beverage.  He was alone.  It would be very nice if he remained so today.  I have no need for his girlfriend hanging around.

He mentioned that he is developing a cold or something.

In my post here yesterday, I presented some of Jack's photos that she took last October 30 (I think) when she and some of her family had an opportunity to visit the Ayutthaya ruins several days after Jack had gone back to Nong Soong (very near to Udon Thani) to visit her mother and other family members.

I have some more I want to present now ─ I suspect that these are more from the Wat Mahathat area (a better description is at Ayutthaya-History.com here).  Since none of the photos contain anybody I recognize, I will offer no further comment:


Have you ─ or someone you love ─ started to find that any activity that was formerly not much of a problem now results in breathlessness?

Sure, it just may be that one's level of fitness has drooped through extensive inactivity.

But a study has uncovered that breathlessness could also be symptomatic of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (such as chronic bronchitis or emphysema)...or even heart disease.

These reports tell of the study:




If the shortness of breath for everyday activities seems to have no valid justification, it must not be overlooked.  There will be a reason for it.

As the study says in its introduction:
Breathlessness, or dyspnea, is a common symptom among patients in primary healthcare and has been ranked fifth among the top 10 differential diagnoses in family medicine. The underlying causes are mostly cardiopulmonary diseases such as heart failure (CHF), ischemic heart disease (IHD), asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). However, obesity, anxiety, anemia, and advanced cancer can also cause breathlessness. Breathlessness has been difficult to quantify, and in that respect, it may be compared to pain and fatigue as a highly subjective symptom.

A fairly interesting article by Dr. Marc Micozzi dealt with depression, and the fact that each antidepressant that may be prescribed to a patient will not necessarily have the desired effect on that patient ─ each person is different, and an antidepressant cannot provide benefit to everyone.

And not only that...placebos seem to work with a higher percentage rate of benefit in tests than do any antidepressants.

Also, booze can indeed relieve depression:


I noticed on New Year's Day, I think it was ─ or was it Boxing Day? ─ as my younger brother Mark, his girlfriend Bev, and I watched television via our Android TV Box in the afternoon; we were enjoying our drinks, and for quite some while as I slowly enjoyed mine, I felt some definite euphoria.

It remained with me for some while that afternoon.

I wish that I could tap into that state any time I wished to.


Of course, even studies that report on health benefits from drinking do stress that there is a one or two drink per day limit ─ drinking over an afternoon may sometimes afford some euphoria, but it is not something one ought to engage in regularly for any health benefits.

Nevertheless, two recent studies have again reinforced the value of very light daily drinking ─ i.e., one or two drinks.

The first study I shall refer to found that drinking like that reduced the risk of developing ischemic stroke ─ but any more drinks than that raised the risk:


The second study found that one to 1½ drinks a day reduced the chances of developing metabolic syndrome.  You will notice in that Wikipedia article I linked to that something over half of the population of the States are suspected of having this condition, and most people have no idea they have it.

Here's a report on that drinking study:

I'm in the category of drinking four or more drinks per day, however.  I might drink even more if I could afford to.

I don't have a life.


I am going to close now with a journal entry from 41 years ago when I was 26 years old, and living in a basement housekeeping unit in New Westminster.

I was renting the wee abode in a house located on Ninth Street, and one or two houses up from Third Avenue.

I had gone to bed the evening before at 10:00 p.m.
SUNDAY, January 4, 1976

I'm sure not having much trouble sleeping lately; though awake for a little while, I didn't get up till after 6:20 a.m.

This morning I typed up Ron a letter.  

Then I watched Buffalo Sabres defeat the Soviet Wings 12 - 6.

I finished reading Tony Russell Wayman's World of the Sleeper.

About 2:00 p.m. I bedded down for a nap, and forced myself up just over 2 hours later.

After exercising, I had just entered the toilet for my shower, when Bill's knocking reached my ears; I let him in, then showered.

We later went to his place, after dropping off my last library book and mailing Ron's letter, and viewed some TV.

Some dame (Mary) phoned him to come over; she owed him $20.  Well, he wouldn't go without me.  So he took me home to spruce up.

The result was for nought.  Some spook hid behind the door of 315 Ash and said "No" to Bill's query as to whether Mary was there.

Bill has tomorrow planned for us, effectively upsetting my routine.

I'll be abed shortly before 10:30 p.m. ─ but it could have been 8:00 p.m. if the fellow had visited Mark tonight in stead of me.
I typed the letter to Ron Bain, an American pen-pal I had back then.

My toilet and shower were not within my housekeeping unit.  I had to enter into the basement proper where a cubicle housed both the toilet and shower, just outside the door to my unit.  I had a second door ─ this one within my unit ─ that opened up to the outdoors.

My old friend William Alan Gill lived maybe four blocks or so from me in a bachelor suite.  I never answered knocks if I was not expecting someone, and those closest to me tended to know this.  Thus, Bill had both a distinctive knock, and he would also call out my name.

I seemed to be feeling some displeasure at how my day had gone ─ and what was in store for the morrow.
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