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  • Combating 7 of the Most Common Nutrient Deficiencies

    For most, having a healthy lifestyle is a top priority. Eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly are often the first things people think of when looking to make positive lifestyle changes. However, many people who are active and eat well can still be missing out on certain nutrients without realizing it. Drug-Induced Nutrient Depletion While we take prescription medications to improve health, many medications (prescription and over-the-counter) can also deplete the body of essential vitamins, minerals, and enzymes the body needs to function optimally. This depletion in nutrients is more specifically a result of drug-nutrient interactions that influence food intake, nutrient digestion, absorption, distribution, metabolism, and much more.¹ Some medications interfere with the absorption of nutrients, others lead to increased excretion of nutrients, and some block the body’s production of certain nutrients. The list goes on. Eventually, these nutritional deficiencies can become significant and cause severe side effects, especially when the medications are taken for long periods as nutrient deficiencies tend to develop gradually over time.² How to Avoid Drug-Induced Nutrient Depletion With America’s increasing reliance on prescription medications (50% of adults regularly take one prescription medication and 20% take three or more), avoiding nutrient depletion can be difficult, but it’s possible.¹ The best way to avoid drug induced nutrient depletion is to talk with your pharmacist. Be honest about what side effects you are experiencing and ask them to review which nutrients might be depleted by your regimen. Consult with your doctor or pharmacist about what supplements may be right for you, or if your regimen can be modified to reduce your risk. Common Nutrient Deficiencies and How to Avoid Them To make up for nutrient deficiencies, there are many over-the-counter vitamin and supplements options — so many that it can be hard to figure out which ones could benefit you. Choosing the vitamins and supplements that are right for your body and lifestyle can be overwhelming, but educating yourself on the nutrient effects from your current medication regimen and learning about the most common nutrient supplement options and their properties can help to alleviate this stress. 1. Iron Iron is crucial for growth and development, increased energy, better brain function, and healthy red blood cells.³ If you typically incorporate red meats in your diet, you should get enough iron. However, the amount of iron you need may increase during times of rapid growth and development, like puberty and pregnancy.³ Vegetarians and vegans may also need more iron if they are not incorporating plant-based iron-rich foods like white beans, lentils, spinach, kidney beans, and nuts.⁴ 2. Vitamin D Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium, which is vital for our bone health. But don’t we get Vitamin D from the sun? Yes, we do, however, more than 40 percent of Americans don’t spend enough time in the sun each day to achieve this. Vitamin D intake is also diminished by wearing sunscreen, taking anticonvulsants, and it is not commonly found in food.³ Consult your doctor or pharmacist today about whether you should add a Vitamin D supplement to your daily regimen. 3. Vitamin B12 A B-complex vitamin is made up of eight different B vitamins, most notably vitamin B-12. Vitamin B-12 creates and sustains your energy supply by breaking down foods and identifying the micronutrients your body needs. Vegans and vegetarians are most susceptible to vitamin B-12 deficiency because many B vitamins are found in animal products.³ Vitamin B-12 deficiency is prevalent in those that have metabolic abnormalities like type 1 and type 2 diabetes patients. Additionally, B-12 deficiency is also associated with gestational diabetes.⁴ If you are at risk, consult with your doctor of pharmacist about incorporating a B-12 supplement and/or modifying your diet to include more B-12 rich foods. 4. Calcium Calcium is a mineral necessary for fortifying bones and teeth. As individuals age, their bone density decreases, making supplement with calcium crucial for bone health. However, more than 40 percent of the U.S. population does not consume enough calcium in their diet.³ If your diet is not rich in dairy, broccoli, nuts, and beans, it is recommended to incorporate a calcium supplement in your daily regimen. Note: For patients that take corticosteroids long-term for conditions like rheumatoid arthritis, calcium supplementation is crucial and highly recommended.⁴ 5.CoQ10 Co-enzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is an antioxidant and heart support nutrient that your body uses to promote cell growth and maintenance. It is found in meat, fish, and nuts, but not in enough quantity to significantly increase CoQ10 levels in your body. Studies have shown that supplementing with CoQ10 may be beneficial in restoring optimal levels of energy, reducing oxidative damage, and improving heart function. Most people have enough CoQ10 naturally, but it is often depleted in those who take medication to support healthy cholesterol level.⁵ If you are taking prescription cholesterol medication, talk to your pharmacist about nutrient depletion and the benefits of adding a CoQ10 supplement to your daily routine. 6. Magnesium Magnesium is essential for bone health and energy production as it regulates the nervous system, eases sleep problems, balances blood sugar, and makes proteins in the body. Magnesium is in many foods, but these foods may not be part of your regular diet. To get more magnesium into your system without a supplement, try eating more: ³ Artichokes Beans Brown rice Nuts Pumpkin Soybeans Spinach Tofu Magnesium deficiency has been associated with increased cardiovascular risk, such as hypertension, stroke, and heart attack.⁴ If you are not getting magnesium in your regular diet, consider consulting with your doctor and/or pharmacist about taking a magnesium supplement. 7. Zinc Zinc is a major player in supporting the immune system. The average American diet is not rich in zinc, so adding a zinc supplement can compensate for this and help boost your body’s ability to fight off infections and heal wounds.⁴ In addition to adding a Zinc supplement to your regimen, you can also incorporate more zinc rich foods in your diet: Spinach Brown rice Grass-fed beef Pumpkin Seeds Patients should never begin taking a supplement to address nutrient depletion before talking with their pharmacist or physician. Some supplements may reduce the effectiveness of certain medications and may not be recommended based on the medications a patient is taking. With the help of your local community pharmacy team, you can break the cycle of nutrient depletion and get the most benefit out of your medication regimen. Sources

  • Women’s Health: Hormones 101

    What are Hormones? ¹ Hormones are your body’s chemical messengers that travel in your bloodstream to tissues or organs. Endocrine glands, which are a special group of cells, make your hormones. The major endocrine glands are pituitary, thymus, thyroid, adrenal, and pancreas. Additionally, women produce hormones in their ovaries. Hormones are very powerful and affect many different aspects of your life, including: Growth and development Metabolism Sexual function Reproduction Mood Too much or too little of a certain hormone, also known as hormone imbalance, can seriously disrupt the way your body functions. Signs of Hormonal Imbalance ² The symptoms of hormonal imbalance in women can vary depending on which gland is affected. The more common symptoms include: Mood swings Constipation or diarrhea Irregular menstrual cycle Infertility Abdomen or back pain during menstruation Low sex drive Insomnia Unexplained weight gain or loss Brittle bones Excessive hair growth Rashes or acne Causes of Hormonal Imbalance There are many medical conditions that can affect hormone production including, but not limited to – diabetes, hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism, Addison’s disease, Cushing’s syndrome, hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia, and certain cancers.² Aside from having a medical condition, there are other factors that could be causing a hormonal imbalance in your body, including: ³ Chronic stress Poor diet and nutrition High percentage of body fat Toxins, pollutants, herbicides, and pesticides Severe allergic reactions Misuse of anabolic steroid medications Certain medications Puberty Menstruation Pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding Menopause Treating Hormonal Imbalance If you are experiencing new or persistent symptoms that you believe may be caused by hormonal imbalance, it is important to talk to a healthcare provider. Your doctor may evaluate you by blood testing, imaging, or urine testing, depending on what condition they believe is causing your symptoms. There are medical treatment options for women with hormone imbalances, including: birth control medications, hormone replacement medications, anti-androgen medications, vaginal estrogen, clomiphene and letrozole, assisted reproductive technology, metformin, and levothyroxine. ³ There are also natural supplements commonly used to reduce symptoms of hormonal imbalances. Before taking any natural or herbal treatment, it is important to check with your pharmacist to ensure safety and avoid negative interaction with any other medications you are currently taking. If you believe you’re experiencing hormonal imbalance and would like to make some lifestyle changes to help reduce symptoms, there are some steps you can take to help, including: ² Maintaining a moderate body weight Eating a nutritious and balanced diet Exercising regularly Practicing good personal hygiene Reducing and managing stress Practicing meditation Limiting sugary foods and refined carbohydrates Avoiding packaged foods Restricting the use of cleaning products that contain toxic chemicals In addition to eating a nutritious and balanced diet, it may be beneficial to also shop organic for certain foods, such as those foods found on the “Dirty Dozen” list which are foods that are most affected by pesticides. The EWG analyzed 46 items, and found that the following 12 fruits and vegetables were most contaminated with pesticides: ⁴ Strawberries Spinach Kale, collard, and mustard greens Peaches Pears Nectarines Apples Grapes Bell and hot peppers Cherries Blueberries Green beans Most women will experience periods of hormonal imbalance in their lifetime. Imbalances are common during puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, menopause, and aging. But if you experience continual, irregular hormonal imbalances, especially those symptoms that cause pain or discomfort, it is important to talk to a trusted healthcare provider about the symptoms you experience and the best treatment plan. Sources,primary%20ovarian%20insufficiency%20(POI).

  • Your Immunization Questions: Answered

    Immunizations: They help keep us healthy and protect us from contracting preventable diseases. However, many people don’t know what how vaccines work or why they should get vaccinated. We’ll answer the most common immunization questions to help you understand the science behind vaccinations and the importance of staying up to date. What Are Immunizations? According to the CDC, immunizations are “a process by which a person becomes protected against a disease through vaccination.” (1) These are typically administered through shots but can be in the form of a pill or nasal spray. Immunization prevents anywhere from 3.5 to 5 million deaths each year from life-threatening diseases such as cervical cancer, COVID-19, pneumonia, measles, mumps, yellow fever, hepatitis B, and much more (2). How Do Immunizations Work? Vaccinations work by exposing your immune system to a safe version of a disease in the form of: (3) A protein or sugar from a pathogen A dead or inactivated form of a pathogen A modified toxin from a pathogen A live but weakened form pathogen The versions of a disease used in vaccinations cannot give you the disease you are being vaccinated for. The most common side effects of a vaccination are mild, such as pain, swelling, or redness where the shot was given. Some people may experience a low fever or fatigue. Vaccines teach the immune system to recognize and eliminate harmful microbes if you are ever exposed to the real disease. (3). Vaccinations give your body a head start making antigens for pathogens. allowing the immune system to react faster if it encounters the actual disease in the future. Why Should I get Vaccinated? Getting vaccinated has many benefits. Here are some to consider: (3) They help prevent diseases that can be life-threatening. They also help prevent future complications that may result from contracting those preventable diseases. Vaccines are thoroughly investigated and researched before being presented to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for approval. Then, they are carefully reviewed before being recommended to the public. Once approved they are continually monitored for safety. Some vaccines can help prevent infections that cause cancer, such as human papillomavirus (HPV) and hepatitis B. They can help save you time and money by reducing the number of sick days you would have to take from work or school and help avoid unnecessary medical bills. They can sometimes eliminate the disease entirely. For example, the smallpox vaccine eradicated smallpox. Vaccines are highly effective. Some vaccinations can lower the risk of infection by 40-60% while others are as effective as 97%. (3) Getting vaccinated helps protect yourself and avoid spreading preventable diseases to other people, especially those close to you. Certain people are unable to get vaccinated due to age restrictions, weakened immune systems, or other serious health conditions. Vaccination side effects are often mild and typically go away on their own within a few days. If you are planning to travel, send your children to school, or get a new job, you may be required to have certain vaccinations. For example, students, military personnel, and residents of rehabilitation or care centers are required to be vaccinated against diseases that spread in close quarters. Who Needs What Vaccines and When? From infancy to late adulthood, the timeline below shows the CDC’s recommended vaccination order. (3) As you can see, many childhood vaccines are administered in groups or series. This might mean that if you are in the process of getting your children vaccinated, it might seem like they are receiving a lot of shots all at once. It is important to note that this is necessary in order to protect your child from potential illness or complications, as delaying a child’s vaccinations can do more harm than good. If you missed a childhood vaccine, you might be able to get them as an adult depending on the vaccine. (3) Even as adults we need to get certain vaccinations. Some adulthood vaccinations include the shingles vaccine, pneumococcal vaccine, your yearly flu vaccine, tetanus boosters, and the COVID-19 vaccine. It is also possible to receive boosters for many vaccines based on your sexual activity, health history, personal hobbies, and other factors. (3) If you plan on traveling, it is also a good idea to make sure you are up to date on your vaccines and double check which vaccines are required for where you are traveling to. You can always check the CDC’s destination pages for travel health information. (7) Here is a quick list of possible vaccinations you may need before you travel: (5) COVID-19 Chickenpox Cholera Flu Hepatitis A & B Japanese encephalitis MMR Meningococcal Pneumococcal Polio Rabies Shingles Tdap Typhoid Yellow fever Will I Have to Pay? Most health insurance plans cover vaccines at little to no cost to you. However, if your insurance does not cover vaccines, or you are without insurance, there are alternatives that you may qualify for. These include community health organizations, Vaccines for Children Program (8), and state health departments. (3) If you do have insurance, here is a list of immunizations that are typically covered depending on your insurance provider. (7) Hepatitis A & B Herpes Zoster (shingles vaccine) Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Influenza (flu) Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) Meningococcal Pneumococcal Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis (Tdap) Varicella Be sure to check with your insurance provider to see what vaccines are covered under your plan. We can also help you review your Medicare options with you to find out what you have covered and determine which Medicare plan is right for you. No matter what stage of life you are in, it is important to stay up to date on your immunizations to ensure you are protecting yourself and those around you. If you have any additional questions about how vaccines work, vaccine effectiveness, or scheduling an immunization appointment, contact your doctor or pharmacist. Sources (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) (8)

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  • Contact Us | Beck's Drugs | Independent Pharmacy

    Pharmacy Hours Pharmacy Location Contact Us Pay My Bill Mobile App PAY MY LTC BILL Monday - Friday: 9:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Saturday: 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Sunday: CLOSED 1409 Locust Street Eldorado, IL 62930 Phone: (618) 273-8111 Fax: (618) 273-5328 CONTACT US We look forward to hearing from you!

  • Beck's Drugs | Eldorado, IL | Independent Pharmacy

    Big Enough to Serve You Small Enough to Care Refill your Meds Anytime, Anywhere With our mobile refills, you get the powerful features of a chain with the service of our independent community pharmacy. Refill your meds, set reminders, securely store information, and more. Download it for FREE today on your smartphone. Full-Service Pharmacy for Your Healthcare Needs Beck's Drugs Oxygen & Medical Equipment has been putting patients first since 1953. We are locally owned and operated pharmacy, proudly serving the Eldorado community and surrounding areas with the personalized experience our customers have come to know and expect. As a pharmacy with a commitment to serve our patients like family, we take pride in knowing our patients by name and helping each individual patient with their unique journey to good health — every step of the way. ABOUT US CONTACT US PERSONALIZED SERVICE is our top priority Med Sync Med Packs Medical Equipment Easy Refills VIEW OUR SERVICES Beck's Drugs Apr 1 4 min Your Immunization Questions: Answered Immunizations: They help keep us healthy and protect us from contracting preventable diseases. However, many people don’t know what how... Beck's Drugs Mar 1 4 min Become a Healthier You with Better Sleep We all love getting a good night’s rest, but have you considered sleep as an essential factor in your physical and mental health? While... Beck's Drugs Feb 1 3 min Blood Pressure and the Importance of Knowing Your Numbers What is Blood Pressure? When your heart pumps blood through your arteries, the blood puts pressure on the artery walls which is what is... Health and Wellness At Beck's Drugs, we are more than just a pharmacy — we are your trusted resource for all things health and wellness. We post health-related blog posts each month to inform and educate our patients and community on various health, wellness, and safety topics. READ MORE

  • Refill Rx | Beck's Drugs | Independent Pharmacy

    REFILL RX Easily Refill Your Medications 24/7 Refill your prescriptions while on the go or from the comfort of your home with our online portal. Simply log in below, enter your prescription information, and submit it to be refilled! Easy. Quick. Convenient.

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