GFM Network News


Regardless of the type of allergy, the mechanism is the same. A foreign substance enters your body and puts your immune system into overdrive to manufacture antibodies.

Guide Health: Be prepared for allergies

Depending on your destination, winter travel can mean allergy season lasts all year

Reading Time: 2 minutes Whether you suffer from hay fever or have “bug” bites, you will certainly know the symptoms of an allergy. Allergies are caused when a foreign substance — think plant pollen or insect venom — enters your body and your body’s immune system reacts to that substance or allergen. With today’s travel, such allergies aren’t confined […] Read more

Younger children and babies without a fully developed immune system can be more at risk for tuberculosis.

Guide Health: Tuberculosis — not just an old disease!

There are two categories of tuberculosis, latent and active

Reading Time: 3 minutes Tuberculosis has been infecting people for thousands of years. Peruvian remains that are 6,000 years old have shown evidence of this illness, and it has even been found in Egyptian mummies. The prevalence of the infection peaked during the 18th and 19th centuries, but recently we have seen a resurgence. Tuberculosis is caused by an […] Read more


Up to 75 per cent of cholesterol is actually manufactured by your body, so sometimes, no matter how well you eat you may not be able to reduce your cholesterol score.

Guide Health: What you can do to lower your cholesterol

Don’t wait for your body to give you a cholesterol warning. You may be too late!

Reading Time: 2 minutes Between 30 and 40 per cent of Canadians have high cholesterol, and many don’t even know it. And they may continue not knowing it until they get a lab result, or, worse yet, a heart attack. Cholesterol is the broad term used for lipoproteins and triglycerides found in the body. By accumulating in blood vessels, […] Read more

Toe nail fungal infections are persistent and rarely resolve on their own.

Guide Health: Toe nail fungus is not a pretty thing

Eliminating toe nail fungus takes patience and persistence, but it rarely clears up on its own

Reading Time: 2 minutes Toe nail fungal infections are difficult to treat and for some people can result in discomfort, pain and even disfigurement. But that doesn’t mean you have no options. More scientifically called onychomycosis, the condition affects about seven per cent of Canadians at any one time, although the number may be higher because people may not […] Read more


Never ignore ongoing dizziness or vertigo. You need to get it checked by a doctor.

Guide Health: Dealing with dizziness and vertigo

Knowing what causes dizziness is the first step in preventing it

Reading Time: 2 minutes Dizziness involves a group of symptoms. There can be lightheadedness, a sensation of spinning, and even fainting. You have probably felt these sensations. None of them are pleasant! Vertigo is a more technical term. It refers to a feeling of motion when there is none, or an exaggerated sensation of motion in response to movement. […] Read more

Advertising would have you believe flavoured water beverages are just the thing you need for your health. But are they?

Guide Health: Fortified water – a good thing or not?

Many of these drinks may make sense for pro football players, but not the rest of us

Reading Time: 2 minutes Undoubtedly you will have seen the rows of fortified and flavoured water drinks in just about any store, as well as energy and sports water products too. According to the advertising, these beverages are just the thing you need for your health. But are they? Canada’s Food Guide has recently been updated, and it recommends […] Read more


“We’re not able to eliminate the stresses that farmers experience but we can help them build their resilience.” – Dr. Andria Jones-Bitton, University of Guelph.

Admitting you have a mental health problem

Learn to look in the mirror… really look. Dealing with stress and anxiety may never be easy, but it helps if you’re alert for these warning signs

Reading Time: 6 minutes For several years, Wayne Black couldn’t see what was happening. He drove himself to be better as a farmer and then, when he became a sales manager at a central Ontario farm input dealership, he was always striving for the highest results for his customers. But early in 2018, he began to notice that he […] Read more

You don’t have to accept hearing loss as simply part of aging. Therapies and devices such as hearing aids have come a long way.

Guide Health: Hearing loss – listen to this!

Too many of us mistakenly believe that hearing loss is an inescapable part of the aging process

Reading Time: 2 minutes Anywhere from 20 to 50 per cent of Canadians report some degree of hearing loss, with the higher numbers being among seniors. A great many of these people accept diminished hearing as part of aging, or alternatively do not realize that they do not hear as they once did. Often, it is actually a different […] Read more


Fibre is found mainly in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes.

Guide Health: Are you getting enough dietary fibre?

Start slowly — adding too much fibre too fast will result in adverse effects

Reading Time: 2 minutes You know that fibre is an important part of your diet, but do you get enough? Daily recommendations vary from 25 to 30 grams of fibre, with older people and women needing even more. A penny weighs about a gram, so that’s about 25 to 30 pennies in weight. (I suspect you can remember pennies!) […] Read more

This is the way farming should look, yet mental health challenges are changing this imagery.

Struggling on the farm

You’re already trained for first aid on the farm. But what about mental illness?

Reading Time: 8 minutes By now, most people involved in agriculture have heard something about depression and anxiety disorders. Whether it’s been through the survey of farmer mental health, started in 2015 and highlighted in 2018, or through the efforts of groups like Do More Ag, word has spread. Now, it’s important that this awareness gets translated into action, […] Read more