Friday, 12 October 2007

Can you name your drugs? Many can't

Filed under:

Can you remember the exact names of all the drugs you're taking? If you can, you're one of the few -- a new study shows that many people think they are giving the correct name of their prescription drugs when, in fact, they're not. 40% of people couldn't accurately name the drugs they were on, and this number jumped to 60% in people with low health literacy.

Obviously, this is a very serious matter. Doctor's will need to know with complete accuracy what drugs their patients on -- both in emergency situations and when they are prescribing addition medications.

So if you're on a number of prescription drugs right now, make sure you know what they are -- your life could depend on it.

Government officials in Japan take on the Samurai diet challenge

Filed under:

Three months ago, government officials in the city of Ise in Japan embarked on a Samurai diet in order to win a vicious war -- against obesity and metabolic syndrome, according to this article. Unfortunately, the program took an unexpected turn -- one government official had a heart attack while jogging and died in August. However, the 'Samurais' motored on and the program recently ended and results were promising, with the city's mayor shedding 12 lbs. Way to set a good example, Mr. Mayor!

I think this is a great idea and one that every municipal government should adopt. Encouraging healthy habits is especially effective when people in the public eye and in positions of authority get the ball rolling, don't you think?

When to buy halloween treats

Filed under:

Here's a tip I figured from

Obesity linked to esophogeal cancer

Filed under: ,

In addition to the multiple negative health effects that Obesity can cause, health officials stated this week that a risk of developing esophageal cancer can be added to that list.

This conclusion comes from a study that included nearly 800 patients with esophageal cancer and 1,580 adults without esophageal cancer.

BMI (body mass index) was the main measurement used in the study, which found that severely obese people (large BMI ratios) were the most likely group to have esophogeal cancer than those with normal BMI ratios. BMI measures width (at the waist) to height, although it's not the best method for determining health status according to many.

A fitness-minded cellphone that's still totally cute

Filed under: ,

I'm not one to carry a bunch of gadgets with me when I work out -- I feel a little bogged down with just my iPod and cell phone, so forget a pedometer or anything else even though I'm definitely interested in tracking that sort of thing. But now here's the perfect "all-in-one" gadget for somebody like me: a cute phone geared towards the stylish, active, fitness-minded woman! The Samsung SGH-E570.

It's got all kinds of fun features but a couple of the funnest things are the built-in mp3 player and pedometer, and some kind of cool motion-sensitive wallpaper. It comes in a variety of colors and although they've designed the phone with women in mind (pink is the most popular) if you buy one in black it can be perfectly masculine too! %Gallery-8559%


Via Book of Joe

Health at work is great, but try not to annoy your coworkers...

Filed under: ,

For the weekly Workplace Fitness feature here at That's Fit I've covered all kinds of ways to be healthy and get some exercise while at work, including everything from moves you can do at your desk to cardio you can do if you have a more private office. But something that's important to remember (and why the above clip is so hilarious!) is that you really need to keep your coworkers in mind and not let yourself become a distraction or annoyance to them. Yes, health is important, but huffing and puffing next to a coworker on this gadget (or on an exercise ball either for that matter!) is so not cool.

Black pigment in Mascara carcinogenic?

Filed under:

Most of us are aware of health risks associated with the foods we eat and the ingredients in them, but I suspect that many people are in the dark about the dangerous ingredients in cosmetics, since, unlike foods, we don't ingest them. But cosmetics can be scary too, and here's a prime example: The FDA has recently approved a black pigment to be used in cosmetics that contains small, but supposedly safe, amounts of carcinogens.

D&C Black No. 3 is also known as bone black, which is interesting considering where it comes from -- it's made from cattle bones that are heated to over 700 degrees. Mmm, sounds lovely, huh? But regardless of how gross it is to make makeup out of charred cow bones, I have to ask -- is there any amount of carcinogens that are safe? What do you think?

(via The Beauty Brains)

The warning signs of anorexia

Filed under: ,

If you know any people that are abnormally skinny or seem to not ever eat very much, that person could indeed have the condition known as anorexia nervosa. That condition generally results in someone not heeding the call to stay at a minimum weight. They eat less and less until sometimes their health is at high risk (even for death) based on caloric intake decline alone.

If you know someone who may be anorexic, it's probably a great idea to pay attention to the below signs from the U.S. National Library of Medicine and find a way to speak with that person should the below be discovered. Anorexia is no laughing matter -- it is most definitely real.
  • Extreme fear of gaining weight.
  • Distorted impression of weight and body.
  • Excessive weight loss, or being seriously underweight.
  • Frequent use of laxatives, diet pills, or diuretics with the goal of losing weight.
  • Eating very little food or very few calories.
  • Missing periods, low blood pressure, lack of fat on the body, or pale or yellowish skin.
  • Depression.

How do you relax? Is it making you ill?

Filed under: , ,

Relaxation is generally considered an essential part of a healthy life, both physically and mentally. But it's important to find the right way to relax -- believe it or not, certain forms of relaxation can actually be bad for you. AOL body has come up with this list of unhealthy relaxation techniques:
  • Watching TV: This is one of the most popular ways to relax but it's been linked to UN-health -- especially obesity.
  • Drinking: This is a favourite way to unwind. But the more stressed out you are, the more likely you are to overdo it -- and do your body damage in the process.
  • Smoking ... anything: Um ... duh!
  • Running too much: Running should be to improve health -- it shouldn't be an obsessive way of burning calories.
  • Eating: Yeah, comfort foods makes you feel ... well ... comfortable, but it will lead to you not being very comfortable in your clothes.

Want more brain power? 'Mouse' with the other hand

Filed under: ,

Want more brain power? Who doesn't! But who knew it could be as simple as using your other hand to control your computer mouse?

By switching your mouse and mouse pad to the other side you'll be forcing yourself to use your non-dominant hand, which means all the information will go through your brain in a different way and the neurological connections between the two halves of your brain will get stronger. Research has shown that ambidextrous people have (on average) 10% more nerve fibers joining the two halves of their brain together.

I don't know about you, but my brain can use all the help I can give it -- more fibers and stronger connections? Yes, lets do that!

For tips and hints on how to make the switch check this out.

Diabetes and obesity on the rise in Aussie teens

Filed under: , , , ,

A new report shows that Aussie teens are more unhealthy than previous generations. Rates of obesity, diabetes, and depression are quite high, says population health expert Richard Eckersley from the Australian National University.

Even while national statistics show that life expectancy has increased in Australia, Mr. Eckersley feels that this statistic does not adequately reflect the greater problems related to chronic illnesses. Furthermore, he points to additional research that suggests that teenagers' physical and mental health are in decline.

Mr. Eckersley's findings were published in the International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health. To read more, click HERE.

Enjoy hiking? Tips for your feet.

Filed under:

Love hiking? I do, especially in fall, when the days are cooler and the yellows, reds and oranges are so vivid and gorgeous. Hiking can be hard on the feet though. If you're considering a hike in the near future, consider these tips from Fitsugar:
  • Wear hiking boots that cover the ankles. They will help stabilize your ankles in case you roll them.
  • Clip your toenails before you go. This will help protect your feet from injury within the boot.
  • Wear wicking socks -- they will help prevent blisters
  • But in case blisters do pop up, bring some mole skin or band-aids.
  • Rest your feet by taking off your boots every now and then.
How do you keep your feet pain-free on a hike?

Right brain vs. left brain: Which do you use more?

Filed under: ,

You've probably heard that the brain consists of two distinct lobes -- the right and the left. The right is responsible for imagination, feelings and creativity, while the left is responsible for logic, details and facts. Want to know which lobe is dominant for you? Go to this link, look at the picture of the dancer and focus on which way she is turning. Is it clockwise? Or counter-clockwise?

If clockwise is your answer, you use your right brain more often. If you saw her moving in the other direction, you use your left. If you look really hard and focus on the dancer, you can see that she changes direction.

For me, she was turning counter-clockwise, which means my left lobe is more dominant -- therefore I'm more logical. What about you?

Bye-bye, baby cough medicine

Filed under: ,

Today drug makers recalled numerous brands of infant cold & cough syrup leaving parents to find alternatives for hacking coughs and runny little noses just as fall sniffles get in full swing.

I happen to have a child with a cold right now and I don't really like to medicate children if I don't have to ... however that said, I have used and currently use Dimetapp for both my boys who are now ages 5 and 7. I'd hate to think that I might have been or might be poisoning them, which in effect is what you are doing if you overdose your children with medicine.

Check out this list and make sure to take these brands out of your medicine cabinets. And speak to your doctor for alternative options for those little ones who might have a cold.

Continue reading Bye-bye, baby cough medicine

Fit Factor: Quality trumps quantity in super-quick workouts

Filed under:

Years ago, I used to make myself feel better about eating a gallon of ice cream by saying, 'Well, I worked out for two hours today ... ' Thing is, that two hour workout was not what you'd call difficult. In fact, I probably barely even broke a sweat. Still, for me, quantity was better than quality, hence me padding a few extra pounds over the years.

I think you know where I'm going with this one. Working out longer only does you any good if you work hard. Otherwise, you're just wasting your time. It's important to make sure your workout is effective, and no surprise here -- the more effective your workout, the less time you actually have to do it.

Still, with all these super-quick workouts popping up, either at the gym or in DVD format, I have to wonder -- can you really only commit 20 to 30 minutes a day and see major results?

Continue reading Fit Factor: Quality trumps quantity in super-quick workouts

Daily Fit Tip: Keep your beach body all year

Filed under: ,

The holidays are just around the corner, with their dreaded temptations and seemingly inevitable extra pounds. But the extra pounds aren't inevitable, and with just a little conscious effort you can totally keep that slimmer beach body figure you worked so hard for this summer all year round. No reason to blimp up and be faced with a nasty weight loss resolution come January!

Women's Health says they've come up with a fitness weight maintenance workout that involves just 1 hour twice a week -- who can't squeeze that in?

That's Fit Weekly Podcast #31: October 12th, 2007

Filed under:

We're always looking for fresh and innovative ways to blog about news and trends fit for helping you live a healthy life. Now, thanks to Saturn, we bring a new voice to our efforts with the launch of our That's Fit Weekly Podcast. Each Friday, we'll go from blogger to broadcaster as we discuss topics relevant to pursuing your health and fitness goals.

This episode we continue our "Regenerate You" series with an interesting discussion on how "good bacteria" plays a role in the regeneration process of optimally healthy bodies! It's all about how a little "culture" can help boost your immune system, enhance digestion and improve your overall health and well-being! Interested? Listen on...

Have comments on our current shows or ideas for future podcasts? Or, do you have a burning health and fitness question you'd like answered on an upcoming installment? Comment right here and we'll do our best to provide the helpful information you're looking for!

There are several ways to receive the That's Fit Weekly podcast: Subscribe to our RSS feed, through iTunes, or just click on the MP3 file link directly below! -- your choice!

Receive That's Fit Weekly Podcast using one of these methods:
[RSS] Add The That's Fit Weekly Podcast feed to your RSS feedreader and have it delivered automatically
[MP3] Download the podcast directly
[iTunes] Subscribe to the podcast directly in Apple iTunes

Host
Laura Lewis

File Format

06.47:00 length, 6.97MB size, MP3 format (128kbps)

October 19th , 2007 Program: Interested in skin cell regeneration? How about the "fountain of youth"? We can't talk about Regeneration without mentioning anti-aging and the skin.

Permalink | Email this | Comments

If you gotta have deep-fried fish...

Filed under:

We all know that deep-fried foods are bad for us, but there are always those moments when you just can't help yourself. So Japanese scientists have been working on a way to make fried fish lower in fat but still crispy, and the trick they came up with is to make the pores in the fried batter bigger. Bigger pores trap less oil.

Makes perfect sense! But I can't help but wonder how long it took them to figure that out, and how much money was spent on the research? Priorities people, priorities!

The Core: All it's cracked up to be

Filed under:

Studies that track the injuries of runners found those who got hurt most were the ones with the weakest cores. That's why strong cores are key if running is your exercise of choice.

This just scratches the surface of what I learned Tuesday night at a free seminar aimed at prepping Gainesville marathoners for a 26.2 mile jaunt in February. Three more workshops will follow. Before I attend the final trio, though, I'm trying to process the nuggets of knowledge thrown my way during the hour I spent with a few fitness experts and a room full of practicing runners. Here's a mini rundown on what I learned:
  • The core -- made up of the butt, belly, back, and side butt -- is the body's engine block. It's like the hub of a bicycle wheel. If that hub were made of tin foil with strong spokes all around it, it would be crushed. Same goes for the core. It doesn't matter how strong our arms and legs are. If our core is weak, our body cannot endure sports like running.

Continue reading The Core: All it's cracked up to be

Permalink | Email this | Comments

30 states still have no mandatory AIDS testing for citizens

Filed under:

30 U.S. states still don't test patients for the virus that causes AIDS, even after health officials continue to want all Americans routinely tested for the virus. This according to a report released this week.

This tells us that the states in question probably do not have any intention on heeding newer guidelines from the CDC that were released last year. The CDC, probably a bit miffed, stated that six states has modified their testing to simplify HIV tests, while other states have pending change that would accomplish the same thing.

What do you think: do you want all teens and adults under age 65 to be tested for HIV when they visit doctor's offices, ERs and other health care facilities?

Dark chocolate fights chronic fatigue

Filed under: ,

More good news about dark chocolate, this time for those suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).

It seems dark chocolate, which contains a high cocoa content and no milk, can alleviate CFS symptoms like no other chocolate can. And this makes it a tried and true prescription for patients of this condition who are urged to consume moderate amounts of the dark stuff.

Researchers believe it's the polyphenols found in large quantities in dark chocolate that do the trick because they affect levels of serotonin in the brain. The chocolate doesn't seem to affect weight gain, though. Participants didn't put on any pounds during dark chocolate pilot studies.

I don't know about you but for those plagued by profound fatigue, this seems like one great recipe for relief!

UK models must prove they're healthy

Filed under: ,

London Fashion Week may prove quite a disaster this year unless event planners comply with new regulations requiring models to produce health certificates proving they don't have eating disorders and ensuring girls aged 16 to 18 are chaperoned. If these provisions are not made, financial backers may pull their funding.

London's fashion industry was put under fire recently by Beat, the UK's leading eating disorders association. Many say it's important to keep the pressure on the industry -- for the models whose health depends on it and for consumers who need to know the fashion industry is not exploiting anyone as they market products.

What do you say? A step in the right direction? Or a catwalk catastrophe in the making?

Discussing dating safety with that teenager

Filed under:

Although dating is about as natural as possible when those awkward teen years show up, there are still guidelines for safety that every parent must think about. The world, as they say, is a different place than it was a generation ago.

Although I would not latch onto the modern media's obsession with bad news and sensationalism these days, there are still things that need to be brought up, like getting to know someone at school or over the phone before arranging a date -- and then, in public.

Here are some other tips from the U.S. Department of Health.These are very basic, but very important.
  • Encourage fun and safe outings, like a picnic, a trip to the mall, or the movies.
  • Talk to your child about the importance of speaking up about what makes her comfortable and uncomfortable.
  • Make sure she -- and her date -- both understand what time she is to return home.
  • Be sure that your child tells you where she's going, who she'll be with, and how you can reach her.

Freaky foods that are fit for Halloween ... or are they?

Filed under:

In honour of halloween I'm going to make a list of ingredients fit for a scary witch's stew with help from this article from eDiets. Be forewarned; they might scare the bejebus out of you:
  • Beef lips, innards and joints.
  • Ground horse bones
  • Biscuits made of science-lab chemicals
  • Curdled milk and bacteria cultures
Sounds gross, right? Well, surprise. These are all items that are part of a normal diet. Beef lips? Found in hot dogs and processed meats. Ground horse bones? That's jello for you. And the cookies and crackers at your grocery stores are made almost entirely of chemicals. Cheese is made from curdled milk and bacteria cultures.

My point is not to freak you out or keep you away from these things -- I believe that cheese, for instance, can be part of a healthy diet. But it's important to know what you put into your body ... in all it's grossness. Eat organic when possible and learn about you're food; afterall, you are what you eat!

Book addresses depression during pregnancy

Filed under: ,

Despite strides in understanding and treating depression in recent years, Dr. Ruta Nonac, MD, says, symptoms of the illness in pregnant women are often overlooked or passed off as a normal side effect. The truth, according to Dr. Nonac, is that women are actually most vulnerable to depression during childbearing years and about 10-15% of women suffer from depression after the birth of a child; the same number experience depression during pregnancy.

That's why the award-winning researcher in the area of women's depression wrote A Deeper Shade of Blue, a recently published book especially for women suffering from depression during pregnancy now available through Amazon and many other online retailers.

The doctor's website will serve as an extension of the book, providing women with the most up-to-date medical information on relevant topics, such as treatment options for women suffering from depression or anxiety during pregnancy or postpartum, miscarriage and other types of pregnancy loss and use of medications during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.


High growth forecasted for nutritional supplement industry

Filed under:

It would really be satisfying to me in a world of processed food, junk food and sugar water to see that the growth of the vitamin and supplement industry is actually growing. Perhaps it is.

More and more humans are becoming empowered by information with the rapid spread of the internet and the ways we're all communicating like never before. Hopefully, this and others will allow us all to lead healthier lives in the near future. Information is power, as they say.

A recent report states that growth
in the nutraceutical and dietary supplements areas is expected to grow in the future across many world markets. I sincerely hope this data is right on the money. One of the non-benefits to how rapidly the world has grown up has been how nutrition has evolved backwards.

Fittest cities for kids

Filed under: ,

Even though childhood obesity rates have climbed to disturbing levels, some kids are still managing to stay healthy. Apparently where they live has something to do with it.

According to the October issue of Men's Health magazine, youngsters who call Seattle home are among the healthiest in the country, while those who live in Cheyenne, Wyoming aren't faring so well.

The cities are included in a ranking of the 100 Fittest and Fattest cities for kids in America, compiled from statistics from nutrition and physical-activity programs, state physical education requirements, and federal fit standards, as well as on unfit adults and the number of sports camps and fast-food restaurants within a city. There's even an interactive map of the country with these statistics and more. The project is part of the magazine's FitSchools Initiative.


Is marriage good for your health, or bad?

Filed under: ,

Marriage has a bit of a bad rap these days, with lots of people complaining and saying how life and fun are essentially over the minute you take the plunge. But millions of people are still getting married every day, and thankfully research shows that they don't have the wrong idea -- it's not a bad thing! Research has found that married people have the following health advantages over people who aren't married:
  • Better general health, and less sicknesses
  • Less alcoholism
  • Fewer suicides
  • Less time spent in hospitals, and faster recovery rates
  • Stronger immune systems
  • Lower risks for depression, along with reduced stress and anxiety
Of course I'm thinking if you marry the wrong person and end up stressed and unhappy then these benefits probably don't apply, but for the average person your spouse may be doing more for you than you think!

Just walk in and stand for your MRI

Filed under:

MRIs aren't fun, and for some they can be downright scary. But what if you could just walk in and stand in what amounts to a small closet with an open door? The world's first upright walk-in MRI machine will let you do just that!

There are obviously several advantages in using a machine like this, among them the fact that people can be scanned in weight-bearing states and in positions of pain for a better idea of what's really wrong, in addition to sitting and the traditional lying down positions. And children can even be scanned while sitting on their parent's lap, which means they probably won't need to be sedated.

I wonder how long before these make it to a hospital near us?


Via Book of Joe

More lead found in toys and lunchboxes at Toys "R" Us

Filed under:

More lead paint news this week, as a doll toy purchased at a Toys "R" Us locations was found to be tainted with 10 times the legally-allowed lead level.

Not only that, but in addition to the Curious George doll, vinyl lunch boxes and backpacks were also found to contain high amounts of lead as well. Do we have another toy recall headed our collective way soon? Who knows.

Marvel Entertainment had made the Curious George doll, which Sassafras Enterprises had made the tainted lunchboxes and backpacks. The Center for Environmental Health went as far as giving notice to Sassafras already that it was violating a 1986 California law that prohibits exposing consumers to carcinogens without warning.

Will that do the trick, or are more lead-based paint recalls on the horizon? My guess is that these items were made in China like all the others. What is is with lead being in so many toys these days? Talk about being incredibly annoying to millions of parents.