Make the Diagnosis: Can You Give this Patient a Hand?

(MedPage Today) — A 70-year-old man went on a rare visit to his primary care physician complaining of some numbness and pain in his hand with difficulty fully opening his hand. When he showed the doctor, his palm appeared to have raised scars and the skin looked pulled together. He said he’d noticed some smooth nodules on the hand a couple of years ago, but he didn’t think much of it because he often worked with his hands. His thumb and index finger seemed unaffected. The doctor noted a long-term tobacco habit, and the patient said he had been in recovery from alcoholism for 3 years.

Can you diagnose the patient?
Source: Dermatology

This Woman Followed a Keto Diet and Lost 100 Pounds—Without Giving Up Pizza

Elena Juarez punched and food-prepped her way to losing 100 pounds. But her weight-loss journey kicked off with a serious health scare.

About a year ago, her 10-year-old daughter, Biani, arrived home with a school nurse’s recommendation for a diabetes test. “She came home crying, asking if she was going to die,” the 34-year-old businesswoman and mother of two tells Health. “I assured her she was fine but I was definitely concerned.”

RELATED: Keto vs Atkins: Which Is the Better Low-Carb Diet?

The doctor told Juarez her daughter was healthy “for now,” but that both she and her daughter needed to make changes to their diet if they wanted to avoid developing the obesity-linked condition.

On her own, Juarez started following a paleo-friendly diet challenge that included kickboxing That's when she heard about the ketogenic diet. Six weeks later, she adopted the trendy high-fat, low-carb plan.

One hundred lost pounds later, she credits going keto and sticking with kickboxing for her weight loss. “Even at my heaviest, I was always a healthy big girl,” she says. After visiting the doctor, “I didn’t know how to approach it, but I knew we all needed to change our unhealthy ways.”

Now, she does an hour-long workout that combines cardio and strength training four to five times per week. She also follows an intuitive eating regimen.

She is proud to say she hasn’t given up her favorite food: pizza.

“Never did I think I’d be able to eat pizza on any diet, so this to me is my favorite part,” she says of her switch from regular pizza to a low-carb pizza crust. 

When the family goes out to eat, Juarez says she orders food with extra lettuce and brings her own carb replacement, like low-carb Shirataki noodles.

RELATED: 6 Keto Smoothies That Will Keep You Full for Hours

“I always hear women say they are too busy because the mom life is a busy one,” Juarez says. But you can never be too busy to take care of yourself and eat healthy; it's all about having the right mindset, she adds.

Source: Health bests

The Two Steps This Woman Took That Led to Her 130-Pound Weight Loss

Meghan Lenss used to love snacking on Hot Cheetos and sipping frappuccinos. In fact, the 26-year-old from Riverside, California ate fast food every day. But when her weight reached 300 pounds in January 2017, she decided to adopt a healthier lifestyle. 

RELATED: 9 No-Cook Meals for When It's Too Hot to Turn on the Oven

Now, a year and a half later, she’s celebrating her 130-pound weight loss. Late last month, she shared a series of transformation photos tracking her slow but steady progress. 

She launched her new lifestyle because she “was tired of everyday activities being difficult,” she tells Health. “Walking to class, not being able to walk up stairs … It was embarrassing.” And she credits two key things with helping her lose the weight.

First, she gave up fast food and started cooking her own meals at home. Second, she committed herself to daily workouts—purchasing an elliptical machine and doing an hour of cardio every night. “It was dreadful and I struggled every night to get my butt in the garage to work out. But I did it, and every day it got a little easier, and soon enough, I saw results. I realized I could do it.”

Lenss also downloaded MyFitnessPal to help her stay on track, and she created Instagram page @_iwokeupinbeastmode to keep herself accountable. And though she makes occasional exceptions, she bid farewell to pizza, fries, and high-calorie drinks.

RELATED: 9 Kitchen Hacks That Will Make Healthy Eating So Much Easier

Today, her meals consist of lean protein and plenty of veggies. She’s swapped her go-to indulgences for healthy alternatives, like replacing her Cheetos for Skinny Pop with cayenne pepper. 

“Through all of this, I started to have more energy,” she says. “My clothes started to fit better. I gained confidence. I joined a gym! But the real kick is that I actually went to the gym instead of just paying for a membership I never used!”

She’s experienced countless highs on this journey, but Lenss also embraces the lows.

“Now, don’t get me wrong. I still struggle,” she says. “I ate an entire box of cookies last weekend. But you know what I did after? I accepted it, moved on, and made the next day better. Progress is a process.”

Source: Health bests

The Diet That Helped This Woman Lose 70 Pounds Actually Involves Eating More Meals

In September 2015, fitness influencer Briana Shaffer weighed 190 pounds—and she was ready to make a change. Now, this 24-year-old from Carlsbad, California is an amazing 70 pounds lighter. 

Her secret? She attributes her weight loss to a workout regimen consisting of weight lifting and high intensity interval training (HIIT). She also began eating five to six small meals per day, as opposed to the typical two to three larger ones most of us have. She shares her meal ideas and workouts on her YouTube channel and Instagram.

RELATED: What to Eat for Dinner if You're Trying to Lose Weight, According to a Nutritionist

As Shaffer discovered, eating smaller meals more often can help shed pounds, and it's proven to help dieters stay on track, Keri Gans, RDN, a nutritionist and author of The Small Change Diet, tells Health.

”For some individuals, consuming smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day is a successful weight loss method,” Gans says. “If these meals are well-balanced, in other words consist of protein, a healthy fat (i.e. avocado, olive oil, nuts) and a carbohydrate packed with fiber, they are more likely to stay satiated until their next meal. Also by wisely planning out these meals there is less opportunity for over-eating and giving into cravings."

More important than the number on the scale, however, is how Shaffer's fitness journey has helped her self-confidence.

Shaffer posts before-and-after photos regularly, and a recent one talked about her insecurities. “It’s so hard not to compare yourself to women you see online or the women in movies,” she wrote. “I so badly wanted to look just like them. Slowly, I realized I could be my own kind of beautiful.”

It hasn't been a smooth ride the entire time either. After losing the first 40 pounds, Shaffer says she experienced a plateau. In her Instagram post, she said, “When I was 150, I felt good but still wasn’t where I wanted to be. I think sometimes we get so wrapped up in where we want to be that we forget to take a moment to look at how far we’ve come.”

RELATED: Scale Stuck? How to Get Over That Weight-Loss Plateau

Though she tried pills, “ridiculous teas,” and other products geared toward losing weight, she said she saw real results after adjusting her mindset and began appreciating her own body.

“Some things that helped me were never going cold turkey,” she says. “I’ve always allowed treats into my diet and have believed in living a healthy balanced lifestyle.”

Source: Health bests

The 4 Things This Woman Cut Out of Her Diet to Lose 30 Pounds in 100 Days

Lots of people resolve to lose weight in the new year—then for a variety of reasons end up throwing in the towel. Not Marga Banaga. She did keep her New Year's resolution to eat healthier and exercise nearly every day, and she's seen amazing results.

RELATED: How to Ease Withdrawal Symptoms When You Quit Sugar, According to a Nutritionist

In a before-and-after Instagram post, Banaga shared that she lost 30 pounds in 100 days. “I did it!!!!” she wrote in the caption. “I survived 100 days of eating clean and trying to workout everyday! Never really had a cheat day.”

So what did she do to lose weight and get in shape? For 100 days, Banaga did not consume alcohol, meat, cheese, or sweets. She committed to a pescatarian diet, meaning a vegetarian diet that includes seafood (tuna and shrimp were frequent meals).

In a 20-minute YouTube video, Banaga shared even more details of her weight loss, plus daily updates.

Banaga decided to launch her New Year's regimen after reaching her heaviest weight, which made her feel depressed. Early on, she even declined invites to hang out with friends so she could strengthen her resolve. “I could not tempt myself with food and alcohol because my self control was not good yet.”

Though she didn’t notice any body changes in the first two weeks, she said she felt better, and her clothes were fitting differently after less than a month. 

Her road to health was not particularly easy, and in her YouTube video, Banaga was honest about the more difficult days. On Day 67, she revealed that her brother had passed away. “I haven’t been in the mood to do anything,” she said, admitting that she was too upset to eat or work out.

RELATED: 5 Habits of Vegetarians You Should Steal

She considered ending her challenge there, but ultimately decided to keep going. On Day 81, she noted that her form had improved since her first trip to the gym. And while she’s crossed the 100-day finish line, Banaga isn’t giving up her newfound healthy living plan.

“Now that the 100 days are over, I need to challenge myself even more,” she wrote in the Instagram post. “Thinking of counting my macros so I can get all the nutrients I need and I'm thinking of lifting weights already! Need to push myself even more!!”

Source: Health bests

Make the Diagnosis: What’s to Blame for his Rash and Paresthesia?

(MedPage Today) — Case Findings: A 52-year-old man who was undergoing chemotherapy for leukemia went to the ED 5 days after receiving cytarabine. He complained of a rapid onset of erythematous lesions on his palms and soles accompanied by tingling and burning sensations.

Can you diagnose the patient?
Source: Dermatology

Make the Diagnosis: Why So Red All Over?

(MedPage Today) — An 8-year-old was seen by her pediatrician because of a sore throat and fever that hadn’t improved after several days. In addition, a petechial rash had started to appear, spreading from her head and neck down her torso. She complained of nausea and appeared ill. Her mother also pointed out that her tongue was unusually red.

Can you diagnose the patient?
Source: Dermatology