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Type 2 diabetes: The best natural supplement to help balance blood sugar levels

Type 2 diabetes occurs when too much blood sugar (glucose) is circulating in the bloodstream. Get things back on track with the help of a natural supplement.

Dr Sarah Brewer recommends CuraLin – a natural supplement created by CuraLife.

“Medicine is moving away from the old paradigm of ‘diagnose and treat’ towards one of ‘self-help and prevent,'” said Dr Brewer.

For those with glucose intolerance or type 2 diabetes, Dr Brewer suggests: “CuraLin could make the difference you’re looking for.”

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This is especially true if you’re managing the condition by diet and lifestyle alone (without medication), and blood sugar readings aren’t currently improving.

Dr Brewer explained: “The blend of 10 Ayurvedic herbs within CuraLin have a range of beneficial effects on glucose control and metabolism.

“Bitter melon, for example, contains a chain of amino acids known as polypeptide-p.

“[This] is structurally similar to insulin and can reduce glucose levels, reduce glucose absorption from the diet and reduce the production of glucose in the liver, so that blood glucose levels improve.”

The medical professional continued: “Others, such as turmeric, fenugreek and amla fruit improve insulin release from the pancreas or activate insulin receptors to reduce insulin resistance.”

She added: “CuraLin, as a herbal medicine, has very few side effects.

“That’s because it has very low levels of 10 different herbs in it, and together they work in several different way to improve glucose control.”

The doctor protested that “many people find their glucose control normalises within four weeks”.

However, she warns people on medication for type 2 diabetes should check with their doctor if it’s okay to take CuraLin.

Addressing one of the main factors behind type 2 diabetes, Dr Brewer confirmed the link between obesity and the condition.

“A build-up of fat within tissues leads to increasing insulin resistance.

“Fat accumulation within the pancreas affects the synthesis and release of insulin, while fatty liver changes lead to disordered metabolism and an increased production of new glucose within the liver.”

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Dr Brewer continued: “This combination, if not addressed through diet and lifestyle changes, can progress from impaired glucose tolerance to type 2 diabetes.”

Moreover, recent research has pointed towards the “protein kinase C epsilon” to be “involved in the development of insulin resistance”.

Until more studies are conducted on that protein, Dr Brewer advises people to “make diet and lifestyle changes”.

Specifically, “drink tea – whether black, green or oolong – [it] contains antioxidants that increase insulin sensitivity”, said Dr Brewer.

She elaborated and said that tea has “beneficial effects on the liver to decrease glucose and fatty acid synthesis”.

Additionally, Dr Brewer supports food swaps, exchanging carbohydrates with “healthy monounsaturated fats”.

For instance, switching carbs for avocado, almonds and macadamia nuts.

She also recommends choosing foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as oil fish and walnuts.

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How to lose belly fat: Six tips to shift weight by reducing stress levels

Visceral fat is a health hazard. It’s linked to heart disease, diabetes, stroke and high cholesterol. What’s a good way to get rid of it?

In light of various studies, one way to reduce visceral fat levels is to minimise stress in your life.

Researchers from the University of San Francisco examined whether chronic stress could predict changes in visceral fat levels.

The 18-month observational study looked at 113 adult mothers and assessed their baseline stress and visceral fat levels.

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Visceral fat levels were measured using a ViScan AB-140.

The research team compared chronically stressed mothers – caring for a child with autism – and lower stressed mothers who had a “neurotypical” child.

Data revealed that chronically stressed mothers had greater visceral fat increases over 18 months compared to the lower stressed mothers.

The research team concluded: “High chronic stress may increase risk for visceral fat gain over time.”

Medical News Today reported that stress “plays a role in storing excess visceral fat”.

This is because a stressed person is swamped with the hormone cortisol.

The Society of Endocrinology explained that cortisol is made in the adrenal glands and released into the bloodstream.

Dietician Dina Aronson added: “Repeated elevation of cortisol can lead to weight gain.”

Although visceral fat is stored inside the body, the waistline can be revealing.

This is because some of the fat stores itself in the omentum – a flap of tissue under the muscles.

As visceral fat levels increase, the omentum becomes harder and thicker, adding inches to your waistline.

Harvard Medical School recommends using a tape measure to “keep tabs on visceral fat”.

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How to measure visceral fat

Measure the waistline at the same level as the navel.

Harvard Medical School regards a waist circumference of 35 inches or larger as a sign of excess visceral fat.

Best ways to minimise stress levels

The NHS lists how to reduce feelings of stress – thereby decreasing visceral fat levels.

First, be active. Exercise can help clear your mind, enabling you to deal with stress more effectively.

Second, take control of the problems in your life. Seek out solutions and implement them.

Third, connect with people who add to your happiness. Laughter is an excellent stress reliever.

Other stress-busting activities include making time for yourself to do what you enjoy, set new goals – such as learning a new language – and help others.

Take up volunteering roles or try to do someone a favour everyday.

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Niall Horan health: Singer’s debilitating struggles he has endured since his youth

Niall Horan, 26, was just a young boy with big dreams when he auditioned for a place on The X Factor. The Irish singer had no idea how his life would change when after his successful audition he was paired up with four other star-eyed boys to form a pop group. And the rest, as they say, was history. One Direction hit a massive hiatus soon after the competition, signing a record deal with Capitol Records and churned out hits after hits, becoming a legend in his own right and admired by teens girls across the world. However, all was not as it seemed, and Niall revealed a disorder he suffered from which made life, at times, unbearable for him.

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Niall spoke to German magazine Zeit Leo and said: “I have mild obsessive-compulsive disorder, that’s what doctors call it.

“That is, I feel I have to do things in a certain way.”

Niall said he had developed the disorder in his childhood, which caused him to feel extremely isolated at times.

The singer shared how his anxious feelings and mental health issues sometimes affects his performances.

In 2017, Niall said he gets a “little anxious” about his on-stage performances and how the struggle to always appear confident and in control can at times be trying.

Niall spoke to Teen Vogue and explained how his OCD causes “tics” or he has the need to complete certain behaviours in a particular way.

Niall said: “I feel like I have to do things in a certain way.

“For example, if I have a burger with chips on my plate, I always have to eat the chips first and only pick up the burger at the very end.

“There are other tics in my life and even when I go on stage, I only have one fixed sequence, I always have to sing in the same order, move and so on.”

What is OCD

The NHS explained: “Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a common mental health condition where a person has obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours.

“OCD can affect men, women and children.

“Some people start having symptoms early, often around puberty, but it usually starts during early adulthood.

“OCD can be distressing and significantly interfere with your life, but treatment can help you to keep it under control.”

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Treatment for OCD

“The treatment recommended will depend on how much it’s affecting your life.

“The two main treatments are psychological therapy or medicine,” said the NHS.

“A short course of therapy is usually recommended for relatively mild OCD.

“These treatments can be very effective, but its important to be aware that it can take several months before you notice the benefit.”

For Niall, breathing techniques has helped him cope with his symptoms of OCD.

Known as box breathing which is process where a person takes a deep breath in for four seconds, breathes out for four seconds, and then hold the breath for four seconds, and repeat as necessary.

Niall said he’s learned to not be ashamed of his tics and that mental health issues are nothing to be ashamed of.

“I live with them and they’re mine no matter what others think about it,” he said

“I’m just like – what the hell!”

If you or someone you know may be suffering with mental health issues its important to speak to your GP about the best form of treatment moving forward and to know that its nothing to be ashamed about.

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How Can Mental Health Services Be More Accessible for People of Color?

In a society that now has mental health on the tip of its tongue more than ever, women of color are having a parallel but nuanced conversation about access, social and cultural stigmas and other roadblocks that keep making mental health services a difficult terrain to navigate.

Marginalized People & mental health

According to a report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) , Native Americans have the highest suicide rates compared to other populations in the United States. Additionally, only 8.6 percent of Asian-American adults are reported to have sought professional help with mental health challenges according to the American Psychological Association.

Similarly, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention indicates that only 20 percent of Latino individuals with symptoms of a psychological disorder talk to a doctor about their concerns, and only 10 percent contact a mental health specialist.

Furthermore, Black people are 20 percent more likely than the general population to live with mental health conditions like major depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. These are just a few of the staggering statistics about people of color and mental health treatment.

Barriers to treatment

As difficult as it can be to even address mental health issues, wanting to seek treatment isn’t enough. For many, accessing the help they need is beyond their reach.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) provides more insight into some of the roadblocks that stand between Black people and getting the mental health care they need, including our faith, spirituality and community factors, reluctance and inability to access mental health services and provider bias and inequality of care.

Ashley Zachary, a self-employed, Black woman in her late 20s, has lived through most of these barriers to mental health access. She has had difficulty finding mental health care as an uninsured person, which has been exacerbated by the anxiety of knowing that most providers require payment out of pocket.

Additionally, Zachary tells SheKnows that her preference of finding a Black woman therapist has made her search even harder. Although the internet and other resources make it easier now than it was in years past, she says that finding a provider is still not easy.

“Even if I can’t go [to see a Black female therapist], seeing that Black women mental health professionals exist, are out there doing the Lord’s work, makes me feel better,” Zachary says.

From a provider perspective, Samantha*, a therapist with a quickly growing practice in an large metropolitan area, explains how important it is for her to be a resource for other women of color. She says she will, of course, treat anyone. She knows firsthand the difficulties — cultural and otherwise — that keep women of color off therapist’s couches and out of treatment.

“When a woman of color comes and sees that commonality, she’s more likely to tell her friends that ‘I have a therapist who looks like me and shares my life experiences,’” she says.

For some, part of those life experiences can include the role that religion and community play in seeking mental health care.

“Nobody talked about it in my family,” Zachary says, pointing out that she had to learn and navigate other family members’ own struggles with mental illness in addition to her own.

Accessing assistance & care

Women of color are seeking support and help on social media and through myriad technologies that were not available even 15 years ago. Some women of color utilize Facebook groups and small in-person gatherings are places they feel they can go for support.

While these methods of support are groundbreaking, helpful and fulfill a need in communities of color, it is clear there is a lot of ground to make up in getting mental health services to the people who need them.

Therapy for Black Girls, a website run by Dr. Joy Harden Bradford fills in some gaps. Harden is a licensed psychologist in Georgia, and in addition to providing articles and other support through the therapy for Black girls site, she also provides a list of mental health professionals who specialize in supporting and treating Black women and girls.

In these cases, women of color are taking the reins and making support, care and treatment available for each other in ways those outside that demographic are not. Perhaps this will grow into mental health support for women of color coming from other demographics, but for right now, these women are doing it for themselves.

A version of this story was published June 2018.

Check out some of our favorite mental health apps for giving your brain some TLC: 






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Here Are the Dates When Every Theme Park will Reopen Following Coronavirus Closures









Knott’s Berry Farm

Knott's Berry Farm, located in Buena Park, California, has not confirmed a date to reopen,

"The safety of our guests and associates has always been and will always be our top priority," the company wrote on its website on May 8. "We want to assure you that when we do open, Knott’s Berry Farm will continue to be a safe and fun environment for all. Our team is 100% committed to this promise."

Like the other California parks, Knott's Berry Farm will be allowed to reopen once California has entered phase 3. (See details above under "Disneyland.")

As of Thursday, there have been over 1.7 million cases and at least 100,426 deaths attributed to coronavirus in the United States, according to the New York Times.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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CDC Warns That Antibody Tests May Not Be Accurate and Should Not Be Used to Determine Immunity


The antibody tests currently available may not be accurate and should not be used to determine if a person is immune to the new coronavirus, COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control warned.

Antibody testing, performed with a simple finger prick in most cases, is now available at many medical offices and offered as a way for people to see if they have any amount of COVID-19 antibodies in their system, which would indicate that they have had the virus, even if they were asymptomatic. But the CDC is cautioning in new guidance that these tests may not be accurate and may create a false sense of immunity that could put people at risk.

Part of the problem, the CDC said, is that people most likely only have a low amount of antibodies in their system, and antibody tests could show false positive results “less than half” of the time, particularly in areas where very few people have had COVID-19.

"In most of the country, including areas that have been heavily impacted, the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibody is expected to be low, ranging from less than 5% to 25%, so that testing at this point might result in relatively more false positive results and fewer false-negative results," the CDC said.

Additionally, the commonly available tests only show whether a person is positive or negative for COVID-19 antibodies, and does not indicate how many antibodies they have.

Along with the accuracy problems, it is not yet known if having antibodies means that a person is immune from contracting COVID-19. And while antibody testing, also known as serologic testing, was initially touted as a way to allow Americans to get back to work or school, the CDC said not to rely on test results.

"Serologic test results should not be used to make decisions about grouping persons residing in or being admitted to congregate settings, such as schools, dormitories, or correctional facilities," they said, and that “serologic test results should not be used to make decisions about returning persons to the workplace.”

The CDC said that while the presence of antibodies “likely indicates at least some degree of immunity, until the durability and duration of immunity is established, it cannot be assumed that individuals with truly positive antibody test results are protected from future infection.”

That doesn’t mean, though, that people should not get tested for antibodies, as the results are helpful for researchers, Dr. Alan Wu, professor of Laboratory Science at the University of California, San Francisco and the laboratory director at San Francisco General Hospital, previously told PEOPLE. The tests just need to be “accompanied by education.”

“There can’t be a misconception of what the results are telling you, because that can be a bad outcome for the individual,” he said. “Certainly, if the test is negative, that would lead one to think that they are susceptible and would need to be highly cautious of their activities moving forward. But those who are positive may have this false sense of security that they’re immune from future infections when in fact they’re not.”

Test givers instead need to caution patients that they should continue to practice proper social distancing and wear masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19, even if they do have antibodies.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. PEOPLE has partnered with GoFundMe to raise money for the COVID-19 Relief Fund, a GoFundMe.org fundraiser to support everything from frontline responders to families in need, as well as organizations helping communities. For more information or to donate, click here.

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Suncream SPF: What does SPF mean? How often should you apply suncream?

The SPF number is found on every suncream packaging on the market. SPF is such a huge part of skincare that the technology has made its way into makeup and daily skincare products. Express.co.uk spoke to London-based domestic, dermatologic surgeon and lecturer Dr Luca Russo to find out everything you need to know about SPF

What does SPF mean?

SPF stands for sun protection factor, and it is a measure of the amount of ultraviolet B radiation (UVB) protection.

The number on the suncream bottle indicates the length of time it would take for UV to burn your skin compared to no sun cream at all.

Of course, this depends on the cream being applied exactly as the bottle instructs.
It would take 20 minutes to burn in midday sun without suncream on.

If you apply factor 15 it will take four hours for you to turn red, which is 15 times as long.

The NHS site explains: “SPFs are rated on a scale of 2 to 50+ based on the level of protection they offer, with 50+ offering the strongest form of UVB protection.

“The star rating measures the amount of ultraviolet A radiation (UVA) protection.

“You should see a star rating of up to 5 stars on UK sunscreens. The higher the star rating, the better.

“The letters ‘UVA’ inside a circle is a European marking. This means the UVA protection is at least a third of the SPF value and meets EU recommendations.

“Sunscreens that offer both UVA and UVB protection are sometimes called broad spectrum.”

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What are UBV rays?

UVB rays are the main cause of sunburn and skin cancer, so it is important to protect yourself from them every day.

UVB rays vary in wavelength and intensity at different times of the day, and they also affect people differently.

They damage the skin’s epidermis, also known as the outer layer. This is where the most common skin cancers occur.

Melanoma, an aggressive form of skin cancer, may also be caused by a short but intense exposure to UVB.

When should you wear sunscreen?

Dr Russo said: “Suncream should be worn whenever the daily Ultraviolet index (UV index) is above two.”

The UV index is an international standard measurement of the strength of sunburn-producing UV radiation at a particular place and time.

You can check the daily UV index for your area on the Met Office website here.

If it is two or more, you must wear suncream.

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Should I wear sunscreen inside too?

Whether you are indoors or outdoors, if the UV index is more than two, you must wear sunscreen.

Dr Russo said: “UVA penetrates clouds and glass, so you must wear sunscreen if the UV index is above two, even if you are staying indoors all day.”

This means it is time to invest in a new bottle of sunscreen for your time indoors if you don’t already have one.

Suncream expires, so check the expiration date on the bottle of any bottles you have lying around before you use them.

How often should you apply sunscreen

Most people don’t apply enough sunscreen, and they don’t apply it often enough.

The NHS site advises: “As a guide, adults should aim to apply around two teaspoons of sunscreen if you’re just covering your head, arms and neck.

“Adults should apply two tablespoons if you’re covering your entire body while wearing a swimming costume.

“If sunscreen is applied too thinly, the amount of protection it gives is reduced.

“If you’re worried you might not be applying enough SPF30, you could use a sunscreen with a higher SPF.

“If you plan to be out in the sun long enough to risk burning, sunscreen needs to be applied twice.

“You need to apply it 30 minutes before going out, and then again just before going out.”

It adds: “Sunscreen should be applied to all exposed skin, including the face, neck and ears, and head if you have thinning or no hair, but a wide-brimmed hat is better.

“Sunscreen needs to be reapplied liberally and frequently, and according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

“This includes applying it straight after you have been in water, even if it’s ‘water resistant’, and after towel drying, sweating or when it may have rubbed off.

“It’s also recommended to reapply sunscreen every 2 hours, as the sun can dry it off your skin.”

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Arthritis warning – when your joint stiffness could be something serious

Arthritis is a common condition that can affect people of all ages, according to the NHS. One of the most common symptoms of arthritis includes waking up with severe joint stiffness.

Arthritis pain can lead to a number of debilitating symptoms that patients will want to try and avoid.

The condition can make life more difficult when carrying out simply, everyday tasks.

But, just some simple lifestyle changes could go a long way in helping to prevent arthritis symptoms from flaring up.

You could be at risk of the condition if you often wake up in the mornings feeling very stiff.

Stiffness is one of the more common signs of the condition, warned the Arthritis Foundation.

Most people feel stiff after staying in the same position for long periods of time.

But, if your stiffness lasts longer than an hour, it could be a sign that something is serious.

Speak to a doctor if you’re worried that your joints are feeling excessively stiff.

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“How do you know if your joint symptoms mean you have arthritis?” said the charity.

“Only a health care professional can tell you for sure, but certain signs usually point to arthritis.

“Stiffness is a classic arthritis symptom, especially when waking up in the morning or after sitting at a desk or riding in a car for a long time.

“Morning stiffness that lasts longer than an hour is a good reason to suspect arthritis.”

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Meanwhile, other common signs of the condition include joint pain, swelling, and restricted movement.

Your joint pain may come and go, and it may spread to different parts of the body.

You should consider speaking to a doctor if you’ve developed symptoms, and the pain won’t go away, it added.

It’s more likely to be caused by arthritis if the pain isn’t linked to any particular injury.

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If your joints become swollen, you should also see a doctor – especially if you’re also feeling unwell or have a fever.

There are two key types of arthritis in the UK; osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

You could lower your risk of developing arthritis by eating a healthy, balanced diet, and by doing regular exercise.

Everyone should aim to do at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity every week.

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Type 2 diabetes and coronavirus: Diabetics could be forced to stay at home after lockdown

Type 2 diabetes significantly increases a person’s risk of developing complications of coronavirus. Now safety measures are being considered to keep diabetic at home – even when lockdown is lifted.

New research shows that one third of all hospital deaths from coronavirus (COVID-19) in England have suffered from diabetes.

Led by the national clinical director for diabetes and obesity, the research team examined 23,904 COVID-19 deaths that took place between March 1 and May 11.

Over the 10 weeks, 7,466 people who died of COVID-19 had type 2 diabetes.

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While 365 patients who passed away (because of the virus) had type 1 diabetes.

This startling study has piqued the interest of government advisors.

Professor Peter Horby, chair of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag) advisory group confirmed that “an active review” of diabetics was being considered.

Right now, most diabetics are classified as “clinically vulnerable” and the government advises them to stay at home.

However, unlike the “clinically extremely vulnerable”, diabetics are permitted to leave their homes if needs be.

Those identified as “clinically extremely vulnerable” have been sent a letter detailing their restrictions.

People who received the letter had been told to “avoid all fact-to-face contact for at least 12 weeks”.

This involved “staying at home at all times”. Whether or not diabetics will enter this category is up for discussion.

Charity Diabetes UK explained how COVID-19 can affect people with diabetes.

“People with diabetes are particularly vulnerable to becoming seriously ill with coronavirus,” it began.

“[This is] because the virus can cause difficulties managing your diabetes, potentially leading to DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis).”

The organisation added: “When you have diabetes, being ill can make your blood sugar go all over the place.

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“Your body tries to fight the illness by releasing stored glucose (sugar) into your blood stream to give you energy.

“But your body can’t produce insulin to cope with this, so your blood sugars rise.

“Your body is working overtime to fight the illness, making it harder to manage your diabetes.

“This means you’re more at risk of having serious blood sugar highs (DKA) and lows.”

Bridget Turner, director of policy at Diabetes UK, hopes the government doesn’t decide to introduce a blanket restriction to all diabetics.

“It’s important to remember that everyone with diabetes is different,” she said.

“A blanket ask of shielding for everyone with diabetes is unlikely to be appropriate.”

However, Turner realises that “it is incredibly important that the government uses the latest data to inform their advice”.

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Coronavirus or hay fever symptoms: The key difference in the two conditions

Hay fever season is here – and it will remain until September. With gradual easing of lockdown, how do you know if you can enjoy more freedom or need to self-isolate?

The UK’s lockdown began on March 23, with people urged to “stay at home, protect the NHS, save lives”.

Now, after two months of mainly staying indoors during the hot weather, it’s starting to ease up.

People within England are now able to spend unlimited amount of time outdoors.

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And this includes meeting with one other person from a different household – two metres apart.

This means two people – previously restricted from seeing each other – can now take a walk, or do a picnic at the park together.

And people can now play golf or tennis with members of their household or one other person from outside your household.

Garden centres have been reopened, house moves are back on track, and property viewings are going ahead in person.

While, at the same time, England is trying to avoid a second peak of infections from coronavirus.

As such, the government’s measures will continued to be reviewed every three weeks.

The main symptoms of hay fever

The NHS lists the main symptoms of hay fever as follows:

  • Sneezing and coughing
  • A runny or blocked nose
  • Itchy, red or watery eyes
  • Itchy throat, mouth, nose and ears
  • Loss of smell
  • Pain around your temples and forehead
  • Headache
  • Earache
  • Feeling tired

The main symptoms of coronavirus

The NHS lists the main symptoms of coronavirus as follows:

  • High temperature
  • New, continuous cough
  • Loss or change to your sense of smell or taste

These two lists of symptoms would indicate that sneezing is reserved for hay fever.

In the beginning of the global pandemic, coronavirus was described to bring on “flu-like” symptoms, which caused a lot of confusion.

This is because “flu-like” symptoms, at one stage did include sneezing, as more was being learned about the new virus.

Now, though, through mounting evidence, sneezing isn’t linked with coronavirus.

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Sneezing isn’t regarded as a symptom of the virus by the NHS, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), or the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Managing hay fever symptoms

Allergy UK points towards antihistamines as the best known allergy medication.

In addition to using antihistamines to relieve symptoms of the condition, Allergy UK has some other tips.

“Monitor pollen forecasts,” it states. Generally warmer, dry days have a higher pollen count and it’s recommended to stay indoors.

On high pollen days, the charity advises to “shower and wash your hair after arriving home and change your clothing”.

It also recommends to avoid drying clothes outside, and to apply “an effective allergen barrier balm around the edge of each nostril”.

This is to trap pollen – and other allergens – to help prevent a reaction.

One effective allergen barrier balm would be petrolatum (Vaseline).

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