The joy of cycling …

Just thought I would share some of these with you.

Maybe they will inspire you to get out there and pedal some. It couldn’t hurt.

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Yes, I went for a ride after I posted this.

Tony

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Filed under biking, Exercise, safe biking, summer biking

Brain boosters & brain busters – Infographic

This is a nice little roundup of foods that benefit the brain and those that don’t.  I was pleasantly surprised to see pumpkin seeds on the list and good for it as I love them and snack on them regularly. Check out my post Are pumpkin seeds good for you? for more, or you can type pumpkin seeds into the search box at the right. I think I have posted on them about five times.

Regular readers know I am a big fan of brain lore in general. Please check out my Page – Important facts about your brain (and exercise benefits) to read further on this critical organ.

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Tony

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Filed under brain, brain function, brain health, Uncategorized

Portion control visuals – Infographic

I am still convinced that portion control is a key concept in controlling your weight. If you stick with these you can’t go far wrong.

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Tony

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Aging may drive progress – Study

I am guessing that everyone who reads this blog subscribes to the idea of living past 100. Well, if/when we succeed, things will be changing.

Population aging is likely to boost medicine, nanotechnology and robotics, but increase political risks, according to the National Research University Higher School of Economics.

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The UN estimates that the number of people aged 65 and older will have reached almost a billion by 2030. The proportion of those aged over 80 will grow at particularly high rates, and their numbers are expected to reach 200 million by 2030 and triple that forty years later.

Due to a combination of an aging population and declining birthrates, the demographic structure of most countries will change towards lower proportions of children and young people. As a result, the global division will no longer be between first- and third-world nations, but between old and young ones. Continue reading

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What Self-Care Is — and What It Isn’t

More good step by step info on living a healthy and happy life.

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To read more on the value of exercise, check out my Page – Important facts about your brain (and exercise benefits)

For more on how good sleep is for the body, check out – How important is a good night’s sleep?

Tony

Our Better Health

When asked the question: “Do you take care of yourself?” most of us will answer yes — we’d even think, “What kind of question is this? Of course I care about myself.”

When asked, “In what ways do you take care of yourself?” — well, that’s where the tricky part begins.

What is self-care?

Self-care is any activity that we deliberately do in order to take care of our mental, emotional and physical health. Although it’s a simple idea in theory, it’s something we very often overlook. Good self-care is key to improved mood and reduced anxiety. It’s also keep to a good relationship with oneself and others.

What isn’t self-care?

Knowing what self-care is not might be even more important. It is not something that we force ourselves to do, or something we don’t enjoy doing. As Agnes Wainman defined, self-care is “something that refuels us, rather than takes…

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Sitting too long may raise heart disease risk – AHA

In December 2013 I posted for the first time on the dangers of sitting too long. “I must confess I was amazed to learn that simply sitting for long periods could be as the headline says, “Hazardous to Your Health and Longevity.” So, it’s not enough to exercise regularly, you also need to make sure that you don’t sit immobile for long periods….” That was the first sentence in the post Too much sitting can be hazardous to your health and longevity.

Now comes the American Heart Association saying, “Being sedentary is not just a lack of exercise, it is a potentially independent risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

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“Regardless of how much physical activity someone gets, prolonged sedentary time could negatively impact the health of your heart and blood vessels,” said Deborah Rohm Young, Ph.D., director of behavioral research at Kaiser Permanente Southern California in Pasadena and chair of the new scientific statement published in the American Heart Association journal Circulation.

“According to the statement, sedentary behavior may be associated with an increased risk of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, impaired insulin sensitivity (linked to diabetes) and an overall higher risk of death from any cause. (my emphasis)
Continue reading

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Good chance you have sarcopenia …

I remember a short story in high school about a man who happened upon a medical encyclopedia. Reading it, he decided that he was suffering from every malady except housemaid’s knee.

As the ‘one regular guy’ producing this blog, I read a lot on various aspects of living a healthy life. I confess to a temptation to wander into hypochondria.

I recently ran across the term ‘sarcopenia.’ Ever heard of that?  It was a new one to me.

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Here’s what the Mayo Clinic blog  had to say, “It is a simple fact. As we age we lose muscle and strength. There’s even a medical term for this — sarcopenia. It’s derived from the Greek words “sarcos” (flesh) and “penia” (lack of).

“Estimates of how much muscle is lost with age vary from 8 percent to about 50 percent of our muscles. Men seem to lose muscle faster than women. Strength is lost more rapidly than muscle.”

WebMD  says, “Physically inactive people can lose as much as 3% to 5% of their muscle mass each decade after age 30. Even if you are active, you’ll still have some muscle loss. Continue reading

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All Fat Grams Are Not Created Equal

Here is another super infographic where one picture is worth a thousand words.

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NaturalNews says that avocados boost health in at least five ways:

1. Protein “Avocados provide all 18 essential amino acids necessary for the body to form a complete protein. Unlike the protein in steak, which is difficult for most people to digest, avocado protein is readily absorbed by the body because avocados also contain fiber. If you are trying to cut down on animal sources of protein in your diet, or if you are a vegetarian, vegan or raw foodist seeking more protein, avocados are a great nutritional ally to include not merely as an occasional treat, but as a regular part of your diet.”

To read more on good fats, check my post: Are Avocados Good for You?

For further info on junk food: A Love Letter to Hostess Ho Ho’s – NOT.

Tony

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Filed under fat, healthy fats, Uncategorized

MEDICATION

This is absolutely worth reading. It is good thinking and meets all my biases regarding living a healthy life.

Tony

All About Healthy Choices

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Webster’s dictionary defines MEDICATION as, “a SUBSTANCE used for medical treatment, especially a medicine or drug.

Webster’s dictionary defines FOOD as, “any nutritious SUBSTANCE that people or animals eat or drink, or that plants absorb, in order to MAINTAIN LIFE AND GROWTH.

We have a tendency to separate the two words MEDICINE and FOOD believing they are INDEPENDENT of each other. Hippocrates (the founding FATHER OF MEDICINE) quoted, “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.” Hippocrates understood that food provided the body an ESSENTIAL COMPONENT necessary to maintain healthy FUNCTION. He understood the body was under constant “attack” by environmental, emotional and physical factors and needed FOOD (as Webster’s dictionary states) “to MAINTAIN LIFEAND GROWTH.” He recognized that GOOD HEALTH was the body’s NATURAL STATE of EXISTENCE. Hippocrates understood that DISEASE only manifested when the body was unable to…

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Exercise as effective as surgery for middle-aged patients with knee damage – BMJ

I am a great believer in the benefits of exercise to raise the quality of our daily lives, but this BMJ study takes exercise benefits to an entirely new level.

Exercise therapy is as effective as surgery for middle-aged patients with a common type of knee injury known as meniscal tear (damage to the rubbery discs that cushion the knee joint, according to a study in the BMJ.

The researchers suggest that supervised exercise therapy should be considered as a treatment option for middle aged patients with this type of knee damage.

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Every year, an estimated two million people worldwide undergo knee arthroscopy (keyhole surgery to relieve pain and improve movement) at a cost of several billion U.S. dollars. Yet, current evidence suggests that arthroscopic knee surgery offers little benefit to most patients. (my emphasis) Continue reading

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Increased weekly exercise levels linked to lower risk of 5 chronic diseases

Must say that I love it when the news meets my bias. So, the story from The BMJ today was particularly satisfying.

Higher levels of total physical activity are strongly associated with lower risk of five common chronic diseases – breast and bowel cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke, finds a study in The BMJ today.

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Many studies have shown the health benefits of physical activity. This has led the World Health Organization (WHO) to recommend a minimum total physical activity level of 600 metabolic equivalent (MET) minutes a week across different ‘domains’ of daily life. Continue reading

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Incidence of most fatal type of stroke decreasing — thanks to a decrease in smoking?

Finally, it appears that there is some good news on the health front in regard to less people smoking.

A new study indicates that Finland’s national tobacco policies seem to be radically reducing the incidence of subarachnoid haemorrhage, the most fatal form of stroke.

Previously it was thought that in Finland approximately a thousand people suffer subarachnoid haemorrhage (SAH) every year – most of them adults of working age. Up to half of those afflicted die within a year. Subarachnoid haemorrhage is typically caused by a ruptured cerebral aneurysm, which leads to a sudden increase in the intracranial pressure. Smoking is a key risk factor for SAH.

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A Finnish study published in the journal Neurology looked at changes in the incidence of subarachnoid haemorrhage over a period of 15 years (1998-2012), and these were contrasted with changes in the prevalence of smoking. The results indicated that the number of people afflicted with SAH was nearly half of the previously assumed figure and that the number was in rapid decline, a trend which was particularly apparent in younger generations. Continue reading

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Some foods make you hungrier – Time

Deciding to eat intelligently is a step in the right direction when it comes to living a long healthy life. But it is only an early small step. You can get tripped up even with the best of intentions.

Eating right is not as easy as it sounds. Time magazine recently produced a page entitled 9 Foods that make you hungrier.

It seems that “’The sight, smell, or taste of some foods will trigger the cephalic food response,” according to Dr. Belinda Lennerz, an endocrinologist and researcher at Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

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The bread basket is a prime culprit in restaurants because it triggers your body’s ‘give me more’ responses and spikes your blood sugar levels.

Eating a small amount of anything around meal time will probably goose  your appetite rather than mellow it out. But some foods are worse than others. Continue reading

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This One Shift Will Change The Way You See Yourself (& Others!)

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Here is another round of fine information on personal growth with a positive mindset.

To read more on positive psychology check out:

Positive Psychology- What’s it all about?

How to harness Positive Psychology for you – Harvard

Practice positive psychology to improve your health

How you can benefit from a positive view on your life – WSJ

Tony

Our Better Health

  • The Challenge: We often assume our abilities and behaviors cannot (or are too hard to) be changed.
  • The Science: You are, indeed, capable of change! It’s all about the way we look at it!
  • The Solution: Cultivating a growth mindset can create positive change and new opportunities in your life!

We are often taught from a young age and through a variety of influences that ability is fixed. Either we’re smart or we’re not.  We’re athletic or we’re not. We’re artistic or we’re not. And certainly, we all differ to some extent in the types of things that seem to come more naturally to us.

Sometimes we’re standing in our own way

The problem is, this way of thinking can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. For example, if a young child does poorly on a math test and thinks “I failed this test because I’m not good at math,” she is…

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22 Fascinating facts about sleep – Infographic

To many of us (particularly in the working world) sleep is an unnecessary interruption in our day. But, the fact is that sleep is a vital bodily function that we must get enough of or we will pay the price. Enjoy the infographic, but please check out my Page – How important is a good night’s sleep.

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Tony

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I Changed My Fuel And It Changed My Health’s Trajectory

Lots of good straight information here. So much of weight control has to do with making good decisions, like having small meals, choosing good snacks, etc. As a snacker, that one resonated with me. Check out my Page – Snacking – the good, the bad and the ugly for more details. probiotics yogurt

Tony

Our Better Health

All calories are not equal. Yet we continue to count them in hopes of managing weight and health. Correcting this flawed thinking will forever change your relationship with food, calories and your weight. Changing your fuel just may change your health trajectory.

Consider the significance of changing the fuel you use in your body. It could make the difference between getting promoted, being injury and illness free, lean and healthy, and even finding romance (or not). It can, and I am living proof. When I began to think of calories as more than just a number, I lost 84 pounds, reclaimed my health and looked years younger. When I only counted calories, not considering their source, I was obese and unwell.

Many know the value of this truth about calories. Professional athletes serve as ideal evidence for this argument. The difference between first and last place is often seconds of…

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