Snoring. It sounds like a whistle, or a grunt, or a roar sometimes & one of the worst cases I heard produced enough decibels to compete with a revved up motorcycle…..I promise I read it somewhere…….and snoring is one of the symptoms of sleep apnea.
We caught up with a old Filipino friend who now resides in Vancouver….and he looked so very fit….he has probably dropped about 40 lbs & he looked youthful in his jeans and tight (obviously he can afford to wear it now) T-shirt. What caused this new look? Sleep apnea. I kid you not.
It started out with a trip to the doctor’s for a high blood pressure problem. He was then referred to a doctor specialising in sleep disorders to help understand the physiology behind his ailment i.e. how his body came to develop the high blood problem. True enough he was diagnosed with sleep apnea and this was caused by his weight problem.
Let me give you a layman’s explanation. You see, the excess fats in the throat become relaxed when you sleep thereby narrowing and sometimes constricting your breathing passage. So this causes snoring. For severe cases, the breathing function is compromised as the oxygen intake is not enough and what does the body do? The heart pumps faster to compensate for this and this can lead to another ailment, high blood pressure.
So the solution…… lose weight.
Well the problem was, our friend was already laying off pork, laying off red meats ….. eating mostly fish and vegetables….ahhhh….but he had not laid off his simple carbohydrates bread, rice and noodles. Apparently that did the trick and ouila….he is a ‘hunk’ now. …..with lower blood pressure of course…..(In all fairness, it is rather difficult for Asians to exclude rice, noodles etc from our diet what with wantan mee’s, har mee, pan mee, chicken rice etc….of which carbohydrates form the bigger chunk of the meal….sigh….but if it helps, it proves to be an effective weight loss method in this particular case)
How to know you have sleep apnea?
1. Do you snore?
2. Do you stop breathing momentarily, choke or gasp when you sleep? (Get someone to monitor your breathing when you sleep?)
3. Do you always feel sleepy and doze off in the afternoons even after a good night’s sleep?
4. Do you suffer from high blood pressure along with all the above?
Well…if you have answered YES to all the above, you probably might have sleep apnea and time to pay the SLEEP DOCTOR a visit….that is if you can find one in Malaysia!!!!!
p.s. Don’t worry, apparently up to 90% of people suffer from sleep apnea without even knowing it.