Tag Archives: the Wall Street Journal

An afternoon at the movies – The Accountant

in November of 2012, I wrote a post somewhat off topic for the blog asking the question “What about heroes without empathy?” I was am confused when it comes to admirable people with heroic dimensions who just happen to be unable to relate to other fellow human beings.

While the post had nothing to do with losing weight or living a long, healthy life, it proved very popular and stimulated interesting comments from readers.

That brings me to yesterday. I went with my girlfriend to see Ben Affleck’s new film, The Accountant. Lo and behold, here we are three years later with a powerful hero very much unable to relate to his fellow human beings.

The Accountant suffers from autism. Autism Speaks defines this as  a general term for “a group of complex disorders of brain development. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors.”

The film surprised me on a number of levels. After seeing the trailers, I expected a high level thriller with Ben Affleck kicking a lot of bad guy butt.

I was pleasantly surprised to experience not only a high level thriller with Ben Affleck kicking butt, but also a detailed exposition of autism and how it affects personal development.

With only one reservation, I would like to recommend the movie as an engaging couple of hours in a dark theater with a small bag of popcorn on your lap. Continue reading

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How do you feel about aging?

Asking your opinion on aging is not just an idle query. Does aging mean decline and disability to you? Or do you consider aging to be a time of opportunity and growth?

According to the Wall Street Journal, your attitude about aging plays a key role in how well you actually experience aging.

“In test after test, researchers are finding that if we think about getting older in terms of decline or disability, our health likely will suffer. If, on the other hand, we see aging in terms of opportunity and growth, our bodies respond in kind,” Anne Tergesen wrote in the WSJ.


The good news is that there is a real physical and mental upside to aging with positive attitudes. On the other hand, negative stereotypes which are pervasive in America can to serious harm to all concerned. Continue reading

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Filed under aging, aging brain, successful aging, Uncategorized

Eating a Big Breakfast Fights Obesity and Disease

And the benefits went far beyond pounds and inches. Participants who ate a larger breakfast — which included a dessert item such as a piece of chocolate cake or a cookie — also had significantly lower levels of insulin, glucose, and triglycerides throughout the day, translating into a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, and high cholesterol.

Earlier this year, the Wall Street Journal reported on the importance of when you eat. Check out my post: When You Eat Each Day Important to Weight Loss – Wall Street Journal.


Cooking with Kathy Man

A high-calorie breakfast protects against diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular problems, says TAU researcher

Whether you hope to lose weight or just stay healthy, what you eat is a crucial factor. The right nutrients can not only trim your waistline, but also provide energy, improve your mood, and stave off disease. Now a Tel Aviv University researcher has found that it’s not just what you eat — but when.

Metabolism is impacted by the body’s circadian rhythm — the biological process that the body follows over a 24 hour cycle. So the time of day we eat can have a big impact on the way our bodies process food, says Prof. Daniela Jakubowicz of TAU’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine and the Diabetes Unit at Wolfson Medical Center. In a recent study, she discovered that those who eat their largest daily meal at breakfast are far more likely to lose weight and…

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Weight Loss Lessons We Can Learn from the Saudis

When I think of the Saudis on the other side of the world from me here in the U.S., I get an image of oil fields, sand and great wealth, not much to do with great health. So, a recent article in The Wall Street Journal opened my eyes about the latter.


Regular readers know that I have railed repeatedly on these pages against the current state of our health. The following quote has appeared in several posts: “Some 60 percent of us are overweight including 30 percent actually obese. Another 10 percent has Type 2 diabetes, a preventable and ruinous disease that stems from inactivity and poor nutrition.” Lamentable as those facts are, an item in the Saturday edition of The Wall Street Journal makes us sound like a bunch of jocks compared with the Saudis. Unfortunately, the weight loss lessons to learn from them are of the “Don’t let this happen to you” variety.

“As World’s Kids Get Fatter, Doctors Turn to the Knife” The headline reads ‘world’s kids’ but the article focuses on the dire condition of Saudi children. The subhead says, “Obesity rates are soaring in Saudi Arabia and other wealthy Gulf states, leading to a boom in bariatric surgery on children.”P1-BP125_OBESIT_NS_20140214164803

In the U.S. bariatric surgery is not permitted on anyone under the age of 14. In the Journal piece, they had a three-year-old weighing 61 pounds getting it. That 61 pounds is double the normal weight for a child that age.

The article mentions the ‘growing health crisis’ in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere in the Middle East. “Widespread access to unhealthy foods, coupled with sedentary behavior brought on by wealth and the absence of a dieting and exercise culture, have caused obesity levels in Saudi Arabia and many other Gulf states to approach or even exceed those in Western countries.”

The doctor doing the bariatric surgery on the three-year-old has done nearly 100 such surgeries on children under the age of 14 in the past seven years.

Where there is a weight problem you can bet that diabetes is not far behind.

“Some 20% of the Saudi adult population has Type 2 diabetes, a condition linked to obesity, according to the International Diabetes Federation, compared with 8.3% in the U.S., according to the CDC. The cost of diabetes treatment in Saudi Arabia is expected to rise to $2.4 billion in 2015, more than triple that spent in 2010, according to a recent study in the Journal of Family and Community Medicine,” The Journal reports.

The surgeon, Dr. Alqahtani studied at McGill University in Montreal and in Denver. “When he returned home to Riyadh in 2002, he says, he was inundated with pediatric patients so obese they were suffering from advanced stages fatty liver disease, diabetes and sleep apnea, a disorder in which patients repeatedly stop breathing for short periods during sleep—all diseases typically not seen until middle age.”

As quoted above, access to unhealthy foods, sedentary behavior and the lack of an exercise culture are responsible for these health horrors. The weight loss lessons to be learned here are that no matter who you are and how much money you have there is no escaping the basic requirements of good health – eat intelligently and exercise your body regularly. Don’t let this happen to you. Eat less; move more works every time.



Filed under diabetes, diet, Exercise, health, healthy eating, healthy living, Saudi Arabia, Weight