Archive for October, 2012

Stop the Spread

Sniffles.  Runny noses.  Violent coughing.  Frequent sneezing.  It is that time of year.

Here are a few good health habits to follow:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home from school, work, or running errands if you are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose tissue when sneezing or coughing.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water.
  • Keep from touching your nose, eyes or mouth.

Everyday preventive actions are steps that people can take to help slow the spread of germs that cause respiratory illness, like flu.

be well-

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BBF with your BFF

While doing a little research on another topic, I came across this campaign Best Bones Forever with your Best Friends Forever!  What a great concept.  As someone who works with many baby boomers and beyond, I see a great number of clients with low bone density, osteoporosis, or are at risk for either of these.

As babies, we are born with 300 bones.  By the time we reach adulthood, nearly 200 bones make up the human skeletal system.  Many bones fuse together as we grow.  They aid in providing structure, protection for internal organs, work with tendons and ligaments to help with movement, house the bone marrow,  and to serve as a source of calcium for the body.

In the movies they like to portray bones and the skeleton as looking old and dried up.  Contrary to this, our bones are living, and always regenerating.  By the age of 20, the average woman has acquired most of her skeletal mass.  It is very important for a girl to reach her peak bone mass.  This will aid in having a higher bone mass later in life.  There is a large decline in bone mass that occurs in older  adults, which becomes a risk factor for osteoporosis.  For women this occurs around the time of menopause.

Osteoporosis or “porous bone” is a disease of the skeletal system characterized by low bone mass and deterioration of bone  tissue.  This leads to an increase risk of bone fractures  typically in the wrist, hip, and spine.

Risk factors for osteoporosis include those  who are

  • Female
  • White/Caucasian
  • Post menopausal women
  • Older adults
  • Small in body size
  • Eating a diet low in calcium
  • Physically inactive

Regular physical activity has been associated with many  positive health benefits including strong bones. Like proper  calcium consumption, adequate weight-bearing physical activity  early in life is important in reaching peak bone mass.  Weight-bearing physical activities cause muscles and bones to  work against gravity. Some examples of weight-bearing physical activities include

  • Walking, Jogging, or running
  • Tennis or Racquetball
  • Field Hockey
  • Stair climbing
  • Jumping rope
  • Basketball
  • Dancing
  • Hiking
  • Soccer
  • Weight lifting

Adults: Engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity most days of the week

Children: Engage in at least 60 minutes of moderate physical activity most days of the week

Best Bones Forever!™ is  a public-private partnership that brings together organizations from across the  country. Founding partner, National Osteoporosis Foundation, tops a partner  roster that also includes Girl Scouts, Girls Inc., Action for Healthy Kids, the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Alliance for Health, Physical  Education, Recreation and Dance, National Association of School Nurses, the  National Institutes of Health, Women’s Sports Foundation, and more. For  more information on campaign partners and activities, go to the campaign Web  site for girls at http://www.bestbonesforever.gov or for parents at http://www.bestbonesforever.gov/parents.

be well-

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Change Is in the Air

The following passage is from Journey to the Heart by Melody Beattie-

Just as the world around us changes and evolves, so do the circumstances and situations in our lives.  We live in a universe that is alive, vibrant, and constantly evolving.  Change is the way nature, the universe and the Devine move us through each period of our lives and into destiny.  We are led to our next lesson, our next adventure.  There is no need to deny change, to fear it or fight against it.  Change is inevitable.  Just as the earth is in constant motion and transformation, so are we. 

looking over the White Mountains from Mt.Chocorua

Beautiful colors of red, burnt orange and vibrant yellows are forming amongst the trees as we are near peak leaf peeping season.  Just as nature shifts from one season to another, we also change.  Sometimes change happens slowly like the leaves.  Other times, change may happen like a volcano erupting without any notice.  Change comes in many forms; a new baby, a change in careers or schooling, moving to a new city, how we communicate with our children as they grow, just to name a few.

Here are a few ways to help cope and navigate through change-

  • Be Flexible  Learn to recognize and take advantage of these opportunities even if they were not part of your initial plan.
  • Maintain Healthy Habits  By caring for yourself mentally and physically, you will be better equipped to handle life’s challenges.
  • Trust Yourself  Developing an inner equilibrium is essential for being resilient in the midst of change.
  • Develop Positive Relationships  Surround yourself with people who are supportive and provide a positive influence.
  • Do a Self Assessment  By understanding your own strengths and weaknesses, and knowing as much as you can about the new situation, you have a better chance of finding a place to fit in.

“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” — John F. Kennedy

be well-

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