Nine Signs of a Serious Health Problem

Have you got cracks at the side of your mouth or thinning hair?

Or itchy feet, an unexplained rash or dark circles under your eyes?

They may seem like benign, innocuous symptoms, but they could in fact be a warning sign of illness or other health issues, says Dr Deyo Famuboni, a GP in London.

‘It’s important to listen to your body,’ she told Healthista.

‘This is ever so true – especially when it’s trying to warn you that something isn’t right.

‘There are so many subtle signs it gives us, that picking up on them – and being attuned to what is normal for you – is vital to feeling well and preventing future problems.’

From yellow spots on the elbows to itchy feet, here she explains how to tell if something is up with your health…

1. Gaining weigh around the waist

Have you gone shopping for a new pair of jeans and realise that your waist size has gone up?

It can put you at risk of developing diabetes and a condition called the metabolic syndrome if it is higher than 31 inches (80cm) as a woman or 37 inches (94cm) as a man.

The risk is substantially higher if the waist is bigger than 34 inches (88cm) as a woman or 40 inches (102cm) as a man.

With high rates of obesity and associated waist circumference, diabetes, which gives us problems with tiredness, concentration, frequent urinating and drinking water short term, and long term can affect our vision, circulation and life expectancy is common.

Prevention is key and keeping our waist circumference low helps this. Regular exercise and a good diet can keep this in check but talk to your doctor about a test for Type-2 diabetes.

2. Yellow spots around your eyes and or your elbows

This is a condition known as xanthelasma and is due to fatty deposits just under your skin. It can be sign that your cholesterol level is raised.

A blood test, usually done on a empty stomach, can tell if that is the case. Depending on the cause of this, dietary interventions and exercise can help to reduce this.

We get concerned about cholesterol because it can be a risk factor for developing problems with the heart or brain such a a heart attack or a stroke respectively.

3. You have darker circles around your eyes

Though not getting enough sleep can contribute to this, dark circles could also be due to allergies and frequently itching the eyes or rubbing the nose.

Working out what they could be, for example, house dust mites, and limiting your exposure may help. If the itching is frequent, anti-allergy medications may help.

Research suggests probiotics may help to alleviate some allergies. (continue reading)

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