New MyPlate icon helps families plan meals easier

The Federal government’s MyPlate icon was created to help everyday consumers think about eating healthier at dinner time. This icon provides a visual representation of what your dinner plate should look like in the way of protein, vegetables, dairy, fruits and grains.

“This is a quick, simple reminder for all of us to be more mindful of the foods that we’re eating and as a mom,

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Don’t let the holiday food scene overwhelm you!

Family Wellness | November 10, 2010 | By

Does the thought of holiday gatherings and parties make you cringe when you consider what is likely to happen to all your hard work at dieting or eating healthier?  If the answer is yes, you are not alone.  The holidays pose challenges for those of us trying to lose weight or eat healthier  but there are things we can do to stay on track.

Follow these tips for a healthy holiday.

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The Power of Ginger

Family Wellness | August 25, 2010 | By

Ginger is a spice with great health benefits. One of the active ingredients in ginger is called gingerol – said to have anti-inflammatory properties. It is said to also contain a high amount of antioxidants and is used to help relieve nausea.

Ginger is an extremely versatile root that has a pungent spicy taste. Ground ginger, mostly used

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Get motivated with a little help from your friends

If you want to lose weight or change your eating habits, let your family and friends know what you are doing, and be specific about how they can help you. Let them know how important, as well as how challenging, this is for you, and that you need their help.

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Quick stress Rx

Write the word “breathe” on a sticky note. Put the note where you will see it often; on your computer, dashboard, workstation, cash register, or cell phone. Or program it into a pop-up e-mail or PDA reminder.

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Every little bit helps – lower the risk of type 2 diabetes

Frequent breaks to stretch and stand may lower the risk of type 2 diabetes for desk workers, couch potatoes and other people who sit for long amounts of time.

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What to do when you have too many things on your plate

Don’t know where to start?

One way to reduce the stress and anxiety produced by an overcrowded schedule is to complete things systematically before you start new projects.

Review your calendar for the week, the day or even the hour. Then pick one item you need to get done or one decision that you can make in five minutes or less. Make a phone call? Send an e-mail? Decide what to have for lunch? Go for a walk?

Once you’ve finished it, cross that item off and say out loud: Done! No matter how small the task, give yourself credit for completing it. As your list shrinks, your sense of control and competence grows. One success sets you up for another.

Source: Recharge in Minutes, by Suzanne Zoglio, PhD, TowerHill Press

Vitamin D and Sunscreen

Now that it’s summer you’re probably ready to lather on the sunscreen. But you may also be wondering about news reports that say sunscreen interferes with the body’s ability to make vitamin D, a nutrient you must have to absorb calcium and build strong bones.

How much vitamin D your body makes depends upon your skin color, the time of year, your age and where you live. Just 10 to 15 minutes of sun exposure twice a week without sunscreen may be all you need. Some
experts believe even that may be too much, however. Unprotected exposure to sun increases your risk for skin cancer.

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that you wear sunscreen with an SPF factor of at least 15 whenever you’re outside, even on cloudy days. Supplements and food sources can fulfill your vitamin D requirements.

When you buy sunscreen

Buy products that provide broad spectrum protection, meaning they block UVA and UVB ultraviolet rays. UVB rays make skin turn red and cause sunburn. UVA rays are longer, penetrate skin more deeply, and cause wrinkling and other signs of aging. Both can cause skin cancer.

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Every little bit helps – lower the risk of type 2 diabetes

Frequent breaks to stretch and stand may lower the risk of type 2 diabetes for desk workers, couch potatoes and other people who sit for long amounts of time.

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“…but Doc, I don’t add salt to my food!”

It is countless the number of times that I hear this or a similar response from patients when the topics of “low salt” or “heart healthy” diets arise during an office visit. The most common medical disease we associate with high dietary sodium intake is definitely hypertension and its been proven in studies that appropriate sodium restriction can reduce systolic blood pressure readings by an average of almost 11 points over time. So it comes as no surprise that the FDA announced this week that they are considering changing the guidelines and recommendations regarding sodium content in food products.

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