Category Archives: Blog

How Low Can You Go?

January 30th, 2018
When you’re stressed, like you might be during a confrontation or when you’re running late, it’s normal for your blood pressure to run a little higher than usual. It’s what’s “usual” that you need to concentrate on, and you want your usual blood pressure to be in the normal range or lower. Recently, the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology released new guidelines that lower the threshold for what can be considered hypertension, or high blood pressure.…

Age Healthy!

September 25th, 2017
According to the US Census, there were 47.8 million Americans age 65 and older on July 1, 2015. This group of people accounted for 14.9 percent of the total population of the United States. The number of Americans in that age group is expected to climb to 98.2 million in 2060. That’s nearly one in four US residents. I’m one of the more than 76 million baby boomers currently over 50, and although I’m not the party girl I was…

Perspective on Psoriasis

August 28th, 2017
We mustn’t forget that August is Psoriasis Awareness Month. As we close out the month, let’s take a closer look at this irritating, chronic condition. Psoriasis is more common than you might think. A recent national survey by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 6.7 million American adults suffer with the condition.   Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease. It occurs when your protective immune system sends faulty signals to your skin. These signals tell the skin…

Wine: Healthy or Hype?

July 3rd, 2017
I’ll be honest. I’m a big fan of red wine and enjoy a glass most evenings. So it was especially interesting to me to read some different views on the possible health benefits of drinking wine. There have been many studies done on the effects of alcohol consumption during the past five decades. Most of them report on the benefits and risks of drinking alcohol, including wine, in moderation. Moderation is defined as one drink per day for women and…

Dabbling in DNA

June 12th, 2017
Are you tempted to use one of those at-home DNA kits like 23andMe, Ancestry DNA and Family Tree DNA to find out more about your ancestry? Before you buy, learn a little more about what they can do and what they can’t. When you get one of these kits, you’ll be instructed to either use a sterile swab to gently scrape the inside of your cheek or spit a prepared solution after swishing it thoroughly in your mouth. These are…

Decisions for Prostate Screenings

April 25th, 2017
Listen up, guys! The recommendations for prostate cancer screening have changed – sort of. The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recently announced it’s stepping back from its previous recommendations, issued in 2012. Then, the task force, a government-appointment volunteer panel of experts, opposed men getting routine screenings using the prostate specific antigen (PSA) blood test. In their new draft guidelines, released April 11, they instead suggest men discuss the benefits and risks with their doctors and then decide if…

Seeing the Light about Sleep

April 3rd, 2017
The promise of better sleep makes me want to go camping. Sleeping outdoors for just a few nights – without a smartphone – is enough to reset body clocks in a way that makes it easier to get more sleep, according to studies. The crux is how light affects circadian rhythms, the body’s built-in system for signaling sleep time and when to wake. Camping provides exposure to plenty of natural light and dark, which researchers suggested prompted a shift in…

Dog Daze

March 27th, 2017
It’s not uncommon anymore to be out shopping and see a customer in the aisle accompanied by a dog. For a long time, we expected people led by dogs in public to be blind, but today, dogs provide many more services than just being the “seeing eyes.” Nowadays, dogs hear for those with hearing loss, detect the onset of seizures…

Brain Injuries, Briefly

March 8th, 2017
March is Brain Injury Awareness Month, and organizations like the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) want people to know more about these dangerous injuries and their aftermath. Here’s a little information to help. Brain injuries involve acquired damage to the brain. The damage is not the result of heredity, congenital defects or degeneration. There are many possible causes of brain injury, including certain infectious diseases, oxygen starvation, seizures, stroke, exposure to toxins, trauma and tumors. According to BIAA, more…

Counting Your Steps

December 14th, 2016
Is a fitness tracker on your wish list this year? The wearable technology gadgets seem to be on wrists everywhere, so you’ll have lots of company. By the end of 2015, people in the United States owned nearly 33 million of the devices. Fitness trackers count steps and calorie burn. They can show how many hours you actually slept. Some measure heart rate and estimate oxygen uptake. All from wearing what looks like a rubber bracelet. Keeping up with all…