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Worker Bees’ Daily Bites: The week’s off to an interesting start! Here’s the latest from the world of health. 1) Bird Flu Gets Real From those news nuts over at The Lede: Culling has begun in the UK to curtail bird flu. Regardless, nobody should be eating chicken nuggets. 2) This Just In: Kids Like Junk Food, Study Says That’s Fit reports that kids are fatter than ever thanks to zero exercise and an abundance of junk food in everything from school cafeterias to Costco’s towering shelves. Is this a surprise? We can all moan and groan about it, but better to be proactive. Maybe you have kids. Maybe you are a kid. Either way, these steps are non-negotiable when it comes to health: – Daily exercise of some sort. It can be as basic as walking home from school, mowing the lawn, helping out with household chores, or walking the dog. But exercise is a must. Make it a requirement for TV and computer privileges. Worried about enforcing it? You make them brush their teeth, do their homework and occasionally even bathe. Add this to the list. – Daily vegetable intake, preferably not fried. Whether you spend an hour on Sundays putting together baggies of veggie snacks, or whether you make them do it for themselves, get veggies into your kids! Kids love junk food. Their taste buds are literally wired for it. It’s probably not realistic to think they aren’t going to eat junk ever, but you can at least keep it out of the house. Always serve a salad for dinner, and keep washed fruit available at all times. Kids don’t mind peas or green beans – even the most finicky kids will eat a bowl of peas. Kids do crave starch, but keep those options green. Avoid the fries, tater tots, chips and other pale starches. – Lie. Tell them eating healthy will diminish acne, mood swings and body odor. (Actually, it’s not even a lie). – Enact and enforce a zero-tolerance soda ban. As far as your kids are concerned, soda is Satan. Kids are gonna do stupid stuff – you can’t watch their every move. But you have more influence than you may think, so use it. This means setting a good example, of course! 3) Tofi Diet toffee? Tea-coffee? Hipster tofu? No, TOFI stands for something else entirely, and it’s a…big…problem. 4) Enviga’s Going Down! Mark’s Daily Apple was among the first to debunk this ridiculous new “negative calorie” drink from Coke. Now the big guns are getting on Coke’s case, too. Aha! 5) Making Single People Everywhere Feel Really Fabulous Thanks, Scotsman. No, seriously, thanks. This study is small, merely highlights reasonable correlation (rating your own emotions: not exactly the gold standard of scientific inquiry), and also, it’s totally annoying. It makes sense that the more socially active and fulfilled you are, the healthier you will be. Studies prove that consistently. This is more about finding something sensational to whip up on … Continue reading “Wrinkle-Free News”Read More
Worker Bees’ Daily Bites: Or should that be…health is the new blog? And have you noticed the constant “this is the new that” slogans everybody likes to come up with? (Just Google: sugar is the new trans fat, brown is the new black, adults are the new kids.) How about a new turn of phrase device? Like…”couplets are the new turn of phrase device”. Oh, wait, that’s just the new thing again. Nevermind. Here’s your piping hot batch of health news! 1) No More Wining All the benefits of wine, none of the headache-inducing tannins and brain toxins. Just make sure you pick 100% real juice, and don’t drink too much of it (because…yes…sugar is the new trans fat). Or just eat grapes. The beneficial antioxidants everyone is in a big stomp about (like resveratrol) are found in the skins of the grapes. 2) Unexpected Mad Cow News Here is some unexpected mad cow news. We’ll keep you posted as research develops. You might want to consider going organic in the meantime. 3) Will it make a difference? The Faster Death Agency Food and Drug Administration has come under furious scrutiny over all manner of corruption and shenanigans (Vioxx, politicizing Plan B, Prempro and numerous other drug scandals). A recent independent investigation found that the FDA errs – big surprise here – on the side of approval even when new drugs have not had extensive testing. Essentially, the FDA gives drug companies a hall pass. In so many words, the FDA says “Hey, Big Pharma, you’re gonna make sure your product is safe, right? Cool. Sally, did you find my iPod yet? I have to make my private jet to Telluride in, like, 30 minutes!” The actual wording is convoluted legalese, but that’s pretty much what it boils down to. In light of the fact that a post at the FDA is a cushy chill-out job for stressed former Pharma execs, this news fills us with hope. We’ll keep an eye on whether or not it actually makes a difference. Check the press release (link below), and you’ll see that the official spin is maddeningly glib: the FDA is changing because it’s simply time to update processes in light of new scientific methods. Gosh, is that it? How fun. Translation: the FDA is changing because, oops, we need to stop approving needless deaths by instituting standards that have already been around for two hundred years. In the meantime, be careful about trying new drugs or multiple prescriptions without first doing a little research – and always get a second or third opinion (fortunately, real research is now easy to find at places like Pubmed, Vitasearch and even the FDA’s own website). And let’s just remember, the FDA is the fine organization that brings us this inflamed nubbin: 4) Finally! New York has taken steps to ban trans fat. So we knew L.A. would catch up sooner or later. It just needed time to come up with a subtle little “Um, … Continue reading “Blog Is the New Health”Read More
“Let’s share our health experiences. Together we can help others. Together we can help ourselves.” This is the motto and philosophy of the new social-networking website OrganizedWisdom.
OrganizedWisdom is user-generated advice, experience, insights, and knowledge compiled and sorted to help people track down answers to their health-related questions.
Looking for a way to get rid of a headache? Check out what other people do to relieve this annoying ailment. Do you have a personal account of how you handled sleep apnea, GERD, or some other condition? Share your experiences and help others on their path to recovery.
The people behind OrganizedWisdom know that, being human, we all have tales of illness, and that collaboration is a great way to help solve health problems. Join this community to help yourself and others collectively achieve health and well-being.
[tags] Organized Wisdom, social networking, social media [/tags]
Worker Bees’ Daily Bites:
Quick bites before you start your weekend (go on, get out of here!).
1) Another Study from Denmark
This study was well-done (for once). And the news is pretty cool: a little coffee in the late stages of pregnancy is probably safe. Worker Bee Sara begrudgingly gives “the motherland” some credit.
2) Varsity Blues
You’ve probably heard the obesity-football ruckus this week about high school football players being too beefy. In general, yes, football players are bigger and taller than your average chess club member. But this study is a good example of why the BMI is…well…lame. Many athletes and extremely fit individuals – particularly men, including Mark – are “fat” according to the BMI, which simply measures inches and doesn’t account for muscle mass, muscle distribution, bone density or physique. If you need to lose a few, don’t you just kinda know it?
3) Billion Dollar Birth Defects
Birth defects are among the most expensive health care costs, running into the billions every year. Many birth defects can be prevented completely by avoiding alcohol, tobacco, drugs, and unhealthy foods. Environmental factors like exposure to chemicals should also be considered, and mothers are encouraged to avoid eating more than one weekly serving of fish from warm waters (where mercury and other contaminants are often more highly concentrated). Additionally, prenatal vitamins (really just an extra-potent multivitamin with plenty of folate) are a must, as is prenatal care.Read More
Worker Bees’ Daily Bites:
Regulation and health care dominate the news today. Today’s bites are more fun – and by the time they figure everything out, you’ll be healthy anyway.
1) You’ve got to be kidding!
Here’s an example of inane spin from mainstream medical reporting. It’s also a handy lesson in debunking ridiculous studies. It’s worth scrolling to the last 4 paragraphs of this article to see why drug-pushing doctors shouldn’t be quite so quick to pat themselves on the back. (Also: blood pressure problems go away entirely with daily exercise, avoidance of processed foods, and stress management. And we still have the highest rate of heart disease anywhere. So let’s work on that!)
2) Fiber Beats Breast Cancer
Common sense, but now more studies are proving this. We’re laughing at the dietary recommendations of this article, however. Who is going to eat four slices of bread and four other grain servings in a single day? Someone who will get diabetes, that’s who. Notice the broccoli serving suggestion – are they joking? Eating 5 servings of vegetables in a day will eliminate the need for all that sugar. Fiber is king, but grains aren’t the best source – especially bread and cereals. Beans are better, since they’re less processed. The recommendations are just wacky – two tablespoons of broccoli is not even an ounce! 4 ounces of broccoli (the equivalent of your fist) yields more fiber than ten slices of bread. Honestly, people!
3) Bust a bad mood now!
Here’s how. We love the idea of an emergency bad mood kit! Kick that bad mood to the curb where it belongs.Read More
Google isn’t the only search engine on the world-wide-web. If you are looking for specific health-related information or technical articles on vitamins and supplements it makes sense to use a search engine that is optimized to provide health-specific results. Here are two websites that do just that.
Vitasearch.com provides scientific articles that cover the latest research in the field of nutrition. Visit the ‘Weekly Updates’ link for the most up-to-date findings on everything from vitamin D and folate to coenzyme Q10 and fish oils. Additionally, this website supplies interviews with some of the brilliant scientists behind all the research. Get their expert opinions on a variety of health topics. This site is simple, straightforward, and as long as you are willing to dig through sometimes technical journal article summaries, provides excellent content.
If you are looking for solid information about specific health conditions and ailments Healthline.com may be able to provide you with answers. This 2006 Webby Award winning site provides filtered search results that draw from over 170,000 health-related websites and thousands of peer-reviewed journal articles. Healthline was developed in partnership with over 1,110 medical specialists to help bring consumers relevant search results. The site also offers cool features like Healthmaps, detailed illustrations and pictures, and quizzes to help assess physical conditions. Although a lot of the information seems to be focused on and sponsored by Big Pharma, this site still offers plenty of preventative tips and a wealth of quality advice (just be aware of the bias).
As we are always saying at Mark’s Daily Apple: be willing to be critical about everything you’ve assumed to be true about health and fitness, and take responsibility for your own health. In order to do this, it is important to stay on top of the latest research and findings. Between MDA and these resources you are sure to find the most up-to-date health information available.