These are my links for December 29th:
- 52 ways to leave your blubber – This is the year you will resolve to ditch the diets, the “all or nothing” mentality and the “no-pain, no-gain” fitness goals. This is the year you will resolve to use common sense to eat less junk food, move more — and have fun doing it.Remember what it was like when you were a kid and you thought nothing of playing tag for hours on end? That spirit still lives. You just need to wake it up. Maybe with a high-energy hula hoop workout or Shaun T’s “Hip Hop Abs,” done in the privacy of your own home. Or by walking your dog while listening to a Dan Brown thriller. Instead of embarking on yet another diet, why not try to lose roughly 1 pound a week by creating a modest 500-calorie deficit each day. That’s easily accomplished by slashing about 250 calories from your diet (the equivalent of five Oreos) and burning about 250 calories through exercise, such as a brisk two-to-three-mile walk. You can do that easy.
- Hope for hearing: Cochlear implants – Cochlear implants are electronic hearing devices for people with profound deafness or severe hearing loss who get no benefit from a hearing aid. There is an external part that is worn behind the ear with a microphone that picks up sounds from the environment, a speech processor and a transmitter that gets signals from the processor and turns them into electric impulses. It is attached to a receiver and electrode system which is surgically implanted into the inner ear. It’s typically done as an outpatient procedure.An implant does not restore normal hearing and is very different from a hearing aid. Hearing aids amplify sound so that damaged ears can hear them. Implants bypass the damage and directly stimulate the auditory nerve which then sends the signals to the brain.
- Medicare Cuts Loom Large as ‘Cliff’ Nears – It’s looking less and less likely that Congress and the White House will strike a deal to keep the country from falling over the “fiscal cliff” next week, so physicians are preparing for a 28.5 percent cut in Medicare payments that will take effect on Jan. 1.That figure includes a 26.5 percent cut under Medicare’s sustainable growth rate (SGR) reimbursement formula and a 2 percent cut mandated by the Budget Control Act, the piece of legislation that outlined the tax increases and spending cuts that define the fiscal cliff.
Runners on “The Strip” during the 2012 Las Vegas Marathon
The answer is YES, according to a new study.
People who want to lose weight are better off running than lifting weights — or even than doing both, researchers at Duke University say.
The researchers compared people who did aerobic exercise — running, swimming, walking, for instance — with those who did resistance training such as weightlifting and with people who did both kinds of exercise. Those who got up and moved burned the most fat, they said in the Dec. 15 Journal of Applied Physiology.
“Given that approximately two-thirds of adults in the United States are overweight due to excess body fat, we want to offer clear, evidence-based exercise recommendations that will truly help people lose weight and body fat,” Leslie H. Willis, an exercise physiologist at Duke Medicine and the study’s lead author, said in a statement.
I can attest to the findings, since I have lost considerable amounts of body weight while walking and running.
I still have more to lose, but my health and energy have improved.
So, if in doubt, walk and then run!
For the first time, genetically engineered tomato plants produced a peptide that mimics the actions of good cholesterol when eaten, researchers reported at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2012.
In the study, mice that ate the freeze-dried, ground tomatoes had less inflammation and reduced atherosclerosis External link (plaque build-up in the arteries).
“We have found a new and practical way to make a peptide that acts like the main protein in good cholesterol, but is many times more effective and can be delivered by eating the plant,” said Alan M. Fogelman, M.D., senior author of the study and executive chair of the Department of Medicine and director of the Atherosclerosis Research Unit in the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.
Researchers genetically engineered the tomatoes to produce 6F, a small peptide that mimics the action of ApoA-1, the chief protein in high density lipoprotein External link (HDL or “good” cholesterol). They fed the tomatoes to mice that lack the ability to remove low density lipoprotein (LDL or “bad” cholesterol) from their blood and readily develop inflammation and atherosclerosis when consuming a high-fat diet.
After the mice ate the tomatoes as 2.2 percent of their Western-style high-fat, calorie-packed diet, those given the peptide-enhanced tomatoes had significantly:
- lower blood levels of inflammation;
- higher paraoxonase activity, an anti-oxidant enzyme associated with good cholesterol and related to a lower risk of heart disease;
- higher levels of good cholesterol;
- decreased lysophosphatidic acid, a tumor promoter that accelerates plaque build-up in arteries in animal models; and
- less atherosclerotic plaque.
Great news and with voters deciding California Proposition 37 (GMO food labeling initiative), it paints a more positive light on the idea of science improving the foods that we eat.
“I guess you want to have a heart attack?”
That is the question you should ask yourself every time you put off taking a vacation.
Here’s the deal. Studies have shown that not taking vacations is linked to health problems. And if people skip vacations, there’s a chance that they may die younger than those who don’t.
I think employers should be required to post warning labels in the workplace similar to those on cigarettes packs. I’d love to see a big sign in the break room that reads: “WARNING: Working too many weeks without a vacation is going to kill you. Seriously, you are going to die from it.”
We are all well aware that stress is harmful to our health. It causes problems ranging from ulcers to body aches to insomnia. Vacations are one of the major antidotes to stress.
I am just back from a few weeks off.
Watch this video from CNN health and then schedule that next vacation: