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In the News Signs You’ll Live to 100 – Part II

Written by Lisa Jillanza

Continued from Part I…

 

You’re a calorie counter.

Researchers in St. Louis reported that men and women who limited their daily calories to 1,400 to 2,000 (about 25% fewer calories than those who followed a typical 2,000-to 3,000-calorie Western diet) were literally young at heart—their hearts functioned like those of people 15 years younger. 

You prefer to drink tea.

Both green and black teas contain a concentrated dose of catechins, substances that help blood vessels relax and protect your heart. 

You skip cola (regular and diet).

Scientists in Boston found that drinking one or more regular or diet colas every day doubles your risk of metabolic syndrome—a cluster of conditions, including high blood pressure, elevated insulin levels, and excess fat around the waist, that increase your chance of heart disease and diabetes.

You eat purple food.

Concord grapes, blueberries, red wine: They all get that deep, rich color from polyphenols—compounds that reduce heart disease risk and may also protect against Alzheimer's disease, according to research. 

You’re not a burger-eater.

A few palm-size servings (about 2½ ounces) of beef, pork, or lamb now and then is no big deal, but eating more than 18 ounces of red meat per week ups your risk of colorectal cancer—the third most common type, according to a major report by the American Institute for Cancer Research. 

You run at least 40 minutes a day.

Scientists in California found that middle-aged people who did just that—for a total of about 5 hours per week—lived longer and functioned better physically and cognitively as they got older.

In the News Signs You’ll Live to 100 – Part I

Written by Lisa Jillanza

Thanks to advances in health, education and disease prevention, people are living longer – many people hitting triple digits – more so than ever before. 

But there are also some everyday habits, or circumstances in your past, that can influence how long and how well you’ll live. 

Here is a two-part article of some science-based signs that you are on the long-life path. 

You love to work out.

Studies have shown that staying physically active can help improve your longevity and help reduce your risk for heart disease, diabetes, and other health conditions.

You have a relatively flat stomach after menopause.

Women who are too round in the middle are 20% more likely to die sooner (even if their body mass index is normal), according to a National Institute on Aging study. At midlife, it takes more effort to keep waists trim because shifting hormones cause most extra weight to settle in the middle. 

You were a healthy-weight teen.

A study in the Journal of Pediatrics that followed 137 African Americans from birth to age 28 found that being overweight at age 14 increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes in adulthood. 

You like raspberries in your oatmeal.

Dietary fiber helps reduce total and LDL ("bad") cholesterol, improve insulin sensitivity, and boost weight loss. 

Continued in Part II…

In the News World Alzheimer’s Awareness Month – Part II

Written by Lisa Jillanza

(Continued from part I…)

 

According to experts, the greatest risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias is increasing age. Although age increases risk, dementia is not a normal part of aging. 

There are more than 20 genes which affect a person’s risk of developing dementia. The gene APOE was the first known to increases a person’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, and it is still the strongest risk gene known. There are also genes which directly cause dementia, but these deterministic genes are rare – they are estimated to account for less than 1% of dementia cases and cause young-onset forms in which symptoms usually develop before the age of 60. 

Keeping active, eating well, and engaging in social activities all promote good brain health and may reduce your risk of developing dementia. Keeping your heart healthy, including by avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption, can lower your risk of dementia and other diseases too.

While there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease or for most other causes of dementia at present, the problems associated with dementia such as restlessness and depression can be treated. It may also be possible, especially in the early stages of dementia, to improve someone’s memory with medication.

It is also possible to help people with dementia in a variety of practical ways. These include ways of caring for people with dementia which build on the strengths and abilities of those affected. This ensures that people with dementia maintain a sense of well-being and individuality throughout their illness.

Although there is no known cure, there is always hope for a breakthrough. That's why it's so important to stay informed. World Alzheimer's Month is one big way to keep the conversation going.

In the News World Alzheimer’s Awareness Month – Part I

Written by Lisa Jillanza

Every September, Alzheimer’s Awareness is celebrated worldwide, and World Alzheimer’s Day takes place every year on September 21.

Understanding Alzheimer’s is important because Alzheimer’s disease is the “most common form of dementia, affecting about 6 percent of people 65 and older.”

In this two-part article, we will talk about this disease in depth and give you some ways to get involved in this important awareness event.

First some facts and figures associated with Alzheimer’s Disease. Dementia is an umbrella term for a collection of symptoms that are caused by disorders affecting the brain and impacting memory, thinking, behavior and emotion, like Alzheimer’s. Symptoms include loss of memory, difficulty in finding the right words or understanding what people are saying, difficulty in performing previously routine tasks, and personality and mood changes.

Important facts about Alzheimer’s are:

  1. It's a killer

About one in three seniors dies with Alzheimer's or another type of dementia — more than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined.​

  1. ​Deaths are increasing

​Since 2000, deaths from Alzheimer's disease have increased by more than 120 percent.

  1. Alzheimer's will affect more and more Americans

​If current projections are accurate, by the year 2050, the number of Americans suffering from Alzheimer's disease will reach nearly 14 million.

  1. ​Women are most likely to be affected

​Statistics show that about two-thirds of Americans with Alzheimer's disease are women.

  1. ​Hispanics are more susceptible

Statistics also show that ​Hispanics are about one-and-a-half times as likely to have Alzheimer's disease (or other dementias) as older, white, non-Hispanics.

 

(Continued in part II…)

Healthy Living: Bath vs. Shower – Which one is Better?

Written by Lisa Jillanza

It’s the age-old debate – bath or shower? Who doesn’t love a nice, hot soak in the tub to unwind? Or how about those steamy, relaxing showers? But which one is healthier? And why? 

First, we focus on the shower. Besides being timesaving and more efficient, here are some other benefits of taking a shower.

  • Reduces tension and improves circulation.
  • Gets rid of headaches and helps with sore muscles.
  • Massages your skin as the water falls.
  • Great for cleaning the body. 

Now for the cons of taking a shower. 

  • You must stand (most likely).
  • Relies on water pressure.
  • Your bathroom becomes a steam room. 

And now let’s take a look at the benefits of taking a bath.

  • Helps treat skin conditions like eczema.
  • Can improve sleep.
  • Good for muscle and joint protection and relief.
  • Helps regulate blood pressure.
  • May improve breathing.

And the cons of taking a bath.

  • Might not be clean (or as clean as a shower).
  • Can affect the body’s pH levels.
  • Strips the body of natural oils. 

So, who is the winner? Either way it comes down to hygiene. Both baths and showers have pros and cons, so it often comes down to a matter of preference and time.  As long as you are getting yourself clean, you are doing good for your body.

Happy Washing!