Improve your chance at living a healthy life

Reduce cancer risk with a healthy lifestyle

healthy life
Photo by Sandra Barnes

By Sandra Barnes, The Mountaineer

October 2, 2017

“Getting regular exercise can go a long way toward reducing the risk of cancer.

‘Physical inactivity is associated with increased cancer risk,’ said Dr. Kate Queen, medical director of the Haywood Regional Health and Fitness Center.

Studies indicate that the risk of invasive breast cancer can be decreased by 15 to 50 percent among physically active women, she notes. And the risk of colon cancer can be decreased by 40 to 70 percent through regular physical activity. 

It’s also important to eat a healthy diet and maintain an ideal body weight, Queen says.

Although a direct relationship between diet and the risk of cancer has not been established, eating healthful foods such as vegetables, fruits and whole grains can be beneficial in reaching and maintaining a healthy weight.

Avoiding tobacco products and limiting the consumption of alcoholic beverages are other cancer-reduction strategies that are advised by the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute.

Queen says that she sometimes sees patients who ask why they have gotten cancer when they have made an effort to maintain a healthy lifestyle. There are interrelated factors associated with cancer risk for individuals—such as a genetic disposition—that make it difficult to identify specific causes and clearly-defined preventative measures, she points out.

However, people can make behavioral changes to improve their chances of living healthy lives.”

Read an overview of ways to reduce risks associated with cancer

 

“Walk faster to help stay healthy”

walk faster
Click to Get Active 10 App

Older Adults Advised to Walk More Briskly

By Roberta Alexander, Healthline

September 6, 2017

Experts say exercise starts to decline as people surpass the age of 40, so they have some tips on how to make your daily walk more effective.

“An entire industry has grown up around walking, a skill most of us mastered by the time we celebrated our first birthday.

There are coaches, expensive shoes, and digital equipment to measure how hard your body is working, how much ground you have covered, and how far you have gone.

Meanwhile, some public health officials in England have weighed in on the subject of walking speed.

And brisk is in.

Middle-aged people are being urged to walk faster to help stay healthy.

This comes amid concerns that high levels of inactivity may be harming the health of older adults.

Exercise fades with age

Officials at Public Health England (PHE) say the amount of activity people engage in starts to tail off after the age of 40.

Just 10 minutes a day could have a major impact, they say, and reduce the risk of early death by 15 percent.

PHE officials estimate four out of every 10 people from 40 to 60 years of age do not manage a brisk 10-minute walk even once a month.

They want to reverse those statistics.

And, not surprisingly, it turns out there’s an app for that.”

Read more and get the free app today!

Feed your brain with the MIND diet

MIND dietMediterranean-style diets linked to better brain function in older adults

July 25, 2017

“Eating foods included in two healthy diets—the Mediterranean or the MIND diet—is linked to a lower risk for memory difficulties in older adults, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

The Mediterranean diet is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, potatoes, nuts, olive oil and fish. Processed foods, fried and fast foods, snack foods, red meat, poultry and whole-fat dairy foods are infrequently eaten on the Mediterranean diet.

The MIND diet is a version of the Mediterranean diet that includes 15 types of foods. Ten are considered ‘brain-healthy:’ green leafy vegetables, other vegetables, nuts, berries, beans, whole grains, seafood, poultry, olive oil, and wine. Five are considered unhealthy: red meat, butter and stick margarine, cheese, pastries, sweets and fried/fast foods.”

Read more from medicalxpress.com

To learn more about the Mediterranean diet go to eatingwell.com

 

A pediatrician’s advice for older adults

7 Things Pediatrics Can Teach Us About Aging Well

Older adults can benefit from following the advice we give to kids

Dr. Edward Schneider, Next Avenue, July 21, 2017

pediatrician's advice
adobe stock

“Aging is a process that begins on the day we are born — toddlers’ seemingly overnight transformations into teens should serve as proof enough of this. And recent research is confirming that the secret to a long and healthy life may be as simple as listening to seven pieces of advice your pediatrician dispensed decades ago:

  1. Eat your fruits and veggies (and skip supplements)
  2. Move your body
  3. Stay in school
  4. Brush your teeth
  5. Make friends
  6. Don’t smoke
  7. Get enough sleep

Pediatricians operate on the principle that it is never too early to begin healthy habits. But it is also never too late. Start taking some of these baby steps today. They can make a big difference in your health and wellness, no matter how old or young you are.”

For more details

Edward Schneider, M.D., is a professor and dean emeritus at the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology. He is a former deputy director of the National Institutes on Aging and completed a research fellowship in pediatrics before turning his focus to improving the health of older adults.

Older adults benefit from whey protein supplements according to study

whey protein supplementsScientists develop new supplement that can repair, rejuvenate muscles in older adults

By Kara Aaserud, McMaster University, Canada

July 19, 2017

“Whey protein supplements aren’t just for gym buffs according to new research from McMaster University. When taken on a regular basis, a combination of these and other ingredients in a ready-to-drink formula have been found to greatly improve the physical strength of a growing cohort: senior citizens.

The deterioration of muscle mass and strength that is a normal part of aging –known as sarcopenia—can increase the risk for falls, metabolic disorders and the need for assisted living, say researchers….

‘The results were more impressive than we expected,’ says Kirsten Bell, a PhD student who worked on the study.

Most notable, the findings showed improvements in deteriorating muscle health and overall strength for participants both before and after the exercise regimen.

In the first six weeks, the supplement resulted in 700 grams of gains in lean body mass – the same amount of muscle these men would normally have lost in a year. And when combined with exercise twice weekly, participants noticed greater strength gains– especially when compared with their placebo taking counterparts.

‘Clearly, exercise is a key part of the greatly improved health profile of our subjects,’ says Bell, ‘but we are very excited by the enhancements the supplement alone and in combination with exercise was able to give to our participants.'”

Read more

Recommended food safety

food safety
fda.gov

Food Safety for Older Adults

By Linda Larsen

July 4, 2017

“The FDA has released information about food safety for older adults. Anyone who is over the age of 65 needs to be very vigilant about food safety. Many of those who become seriously ill and even die from food poisoning are elderly.

The bodies of older adults do not work as well as they did decades ago. The stomach and intestinal tract hold onto food for longer periods of time, the senses of smell and taste are altered, and the liver and kidneys don’t work as well to get rid of toxins. And by the age of 65, many people have been diagnosed with a serious illness. That is a double whammy, since people with chronic health problems are also at higher risk for serious complications from food poisoning.

After the age of 75, many people also have reduced immune system responses. That means that body doesn’t recognize and get rid of pathogens such as bacteria that cause food poisoning. Older adults are more likely to be sick longer when they contract food poisoning and need to be hospitalized.”

Follow the steps of Clean, Separate, Cook, and Chill to keep food safe.

Read more

“Real men wear sunscreen”

sunscreenUse these helpful tips to protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays

Healthy Living Made Simple, May/June 2017

“To no one’s surprise, sun exposure is the leading cause of skin cancer. Statistics from the Skin Cancer Foundation show that 65 percent of all melanoma cases are associated with exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. That same research also shows men over the age of 40 have the highest annual exposure to UV radiation. Men over the age of 50 comprise the majority of people diagnosed with melanoma, and it’s also one of only three cancers with an increasing mortality rate for men.

Here are a few things to remember before tackling the yard, hitting the links or casting a line:  (Note:  Not just for men!)

Recreational precautions

  • Apply sunscreen before you play, reapply every two hours or at the ninth hole. Don’t forget to apply on exposed scalp, the backs of hands, neck and ears.
  • Try to tee off at sunrise or late in the afternoon to avoid the sun when it’s most intense (10 am – 4 pm).”

For more tips

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