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Saturday, September 29, 2012

September 29, 2012
Family Health and Fitness Day USA

Family Health and Fitness Day USA is a national health and fitness event for families always held the last Saturday in September. This year is the 16th Annual Family Health and Fitness Day USA and is set for Saturday, September 29, 2012.

The event's purpose is to promote the importance of regular physical activity for children and their parents. Families will participate in health promotion events at hundreds of locations throughout the country, including YMCAs and health clubs, park districts, schools, houses of worship and state and local health organizations.



It's Family Time!

You can jump rope, ride bikes, and take a walk as a family. Remember to be safe by using sunscreen, bike helmets, and staying hydrated.

September 29
World Heart Day


"One World, One Home, One Heart"

World Heart Day was created to inform people around the globe that heart disease and stroke are the world’s leading cause of death, claiming 17.1 million lives each year, 80% in the developing world.


The World Heart Federation exists to prevent and control these diseases through awareness campaigns and action, promoting the exchange of information, ideas and science among those involved in cardiovascular care, advocating for disease prevention and control by promoting healthy diets, physical activity and tobacco free living at an individual, community and policy maker level. There work is organized in four programme areas.
     Awareness
     Advocacy
     Applied Research
     Sharing Science and  Building Capacity

Over 70 per cent of all cardiac and breathing emergencies occur in the home when a family member is present and available to help a victim.


Learn the signs and symptoms of a heart attack or stroke 


Warning Signs of a Heart Attack include:

* Chest discomfort, including squeezing or pain in the centre of the chest between the breasts or behind the breastbone
*  Discomfort and/or pain spreading to other areas of the upper body such as one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach
*  Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort
Other signs include: unexplained weakness or fatigue, anxiety or unusual nervousness, indigestion or gas-like pain, breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea, vomiting, light-headedness and collapse.

Warning Signs of a Stroke include:
*  Sudden weakness of the face, arm, or leg, most often on one side of the body
*  Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding
*  Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
*  Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
*  Sudden, severe headache with no known cause
If experiencing any of these signs, which could come and go, call your emergency services/ambulance immediately.  If there is no emergency response number, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

CVD risk factors include:


*  Being overweight
*  High blood cholesterol
*  Tobacco use
*  Lack of physical activity*  High blood pressure
*  Presence of diabetes

Visit the World Heart Foundation for more information.
    

Thursday, September 27, 2012

National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month 

On September 1, 2010 President Obama declared September
"National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month".

President Obama stated, "One of the greatest responsibilities we have as a Nation is to safeguard the health and well-being of our children. We now face a national childhood obesity crisis, with nearly one in every three of America's children being overweight or obese. There are concrete steps we can take right away as concerned parents, caregivers, educators, loved ones, and a Nation to ensure that our children are able to live full and active lives. During National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, I urge all Americans to take action to meet our national goal of solving the problem of childhood obesity within a generation."


Obesity has a profound effect on a child's life. Health problems related to childhood obesity include:
Asthma
Diabetes, type 2
High blood pressure
High cholesterol
Heart failure
Bone and joint problems in the lower body
Growth abnormalities
Emotional and social problems
Poor self-esteem
Victims of Bullying
Breathing problems
Rashes or fungal infections of the skin


Children who are overweight or obese are more likely to become an obese adult with health problems in adulthood, such as: 
Heart disease
Stroke 
Certain types of cancer 
Osteoarthritis 
Gout 
Gallbladder disease
Children are our future. As adults, parents, educators and health professionals it is our responsibility to teach children about healthy food choices, benefits of physical activities and building self-esteem.












Resources
Child Health and
Nutrition Resources


Visit the Childhood Obesity Awareness Month website for
a toolkit including tips and resources.

Kids Eat Right
your source for scientifically-based health and nutrition information you can trust to help your child grow healthy. As a parent or caretaker you need reliable resources and you can find them here, backed by the expertise of nutrition professionals.


Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is your source for trustworthy, science-based food and nutrition information. The worlds largest organization of food and nutrition professionals, AND is committed to improving the nation's health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy.
Let’s Move  is about putting children on the path to a healthy future during their earliest months and years. Giving parents helpful information and fostering environments that support healthy choices. Providing healthier foods in our schools. Ensuring that every family has access to healthy, affordable food. And, helping children become more physically active.
Choose MyPlate.  The website features practical information and tips to help Americans build healthier diets. 
Action for Healthy Kidsbelieve there are ways to reduce and prevent childhood obesity and undernourishment. Learn how Action for Healthy Kids is working with schools, families and communities to help our kids learn to be healthier and be ready to learn.

Healthy Children  The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and its member pediatricians dedicate their efforts and resources to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults.
Healthy Children - Nutrition;
Food Allergies in Children
Team Nutrition; 10 Tips Nutrition Education Series;
Menu Planner for Healthy School Meals;


Eat Smart. Play Hard.™ Materials.
Campaign launched by USDA's Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to encourage and teach children, parents, and caregivers to eat healthy and be physically active every day. Eat Smart. Play Hard.™ is about making America's children healthier. It's about practical suggestions that will help you motivate children and their caregivers to eat healthy and be active. Eat Smart. Play Hard.™ Campaign messages and materials are fun for children and informative for caregivers.

Building Blocks for Fun and Healthy Meals;
Fact Sheets For Healthier School Meals



We Can.
The We Can! GO, SLOW, and WHOA Foods fact sheet
(pdf) can be posted on the refrigerator or used when grocery shopping.

The We Can! Parent Tips - Snack (pdf)
100 Calories or Less tip sheet can help consumers choose vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat (1 percent) milk for healthier snacks.
The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is a federally assisted meal program operating in public and nonprofit private schools and residential child care institutions. It provides nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free lunches to children each school day. The program was established under the National School Lunch Act, signed by President Harry Truman in 1946.
The School Breakfast Program (SBP) provides cash assistance to States to operate nonprofit breakfast programs in schools and residential childcare institutions. The program is administered at the Federal level by FNS. State education agencies administer the SBP at the State level, and local school food authorities operate it in schools.

Recommended Books



Wednesday, September 26, 2012

September 26, 2012
National Women's Health and Fitness Day

National Women's Health and Fitness Day is the nation’s largest annual health promotion event for women of all ages. The event is always held on the last Wednesday in September.

This unique national program — with participation by local organizations throughout the U.S. — focuses attention on the importance of regular physical activity and health awareness for women.

The goal of this event is to encourage women to take control of their health: to learn the facts they need to make smart health choices, and to make time for regular physical activity.

Life's Simple Seven

Because of its grassroots nature, the event provides an excellent opportunity for local organizations to showcase the health-related programs and services they offer to women in their communities.

There are some women who are so busy caring for their families and others, they neglect to care for themselves. On this day remind the women in your life to take steps to improve their health and prevent disease.

It is important for women to get regular checkups because: screening tests, such as mammograms and Pap tests, can find diseases early, when they are easier to treat. Some women need certain screening tests earlier, or more often, than others. Screenings and routine care can help women lower their risks of many health conditions, including heart disease. 

National Women's Health and Fitness Day is a public/private good health partnership organized by the Health Information Resource Center (HIRC), a national clearinghouse for consumer health information professionals.
locations. An estimated 100,000 women of all ages will participate in the 10th annual National Women's Health and Fitness Day at hundreds of community locations across the country.

More than 1,400 groups across the country will host women’s health and fitness events at senior centers, hospitals, health clubs, park and recreation districts, local health and service organizations, schools, retirement communities, houses of worship, and other community







Tuesday, September 25, 2012

September, Fruit and Veggies - More Matters Month


Key Consumer Message:
Dietary Recommendations 
for Americans, 2010 
Fruits and Vegetables 

There are three reasons to eat the recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables.
1. Most vegetables and fruits contribute a wide variety of nutrients, including folate, magnesium, potassium, dietary fiber, and vitamins A, C, and K. 
2. Consumption of fruits and vegetables is associated with reduced risk of many chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer.
3. Most fruits and vegetables have no cholesterol and are low in calories and fat. Eating more will help maintain a healthy weight.

From MyPlate.gov
What Foods Are in the Fruit and Vegetable Groups?

Fruits. Any fruit or 100% fruit juice counts as part of the Fruit Group. Fruits may be fresh, canned, frozen, or dried, and may be whole, cut-up, or pureed.

In general, 1 cup of fruit or 100% fruit juice, or ½ cup of dried fruit can be considered as 1 cup from the Fruit Group. The following link lists specific fruits and amounts that count as one cup of fruit (or in some cases equivalents for ½ cup are noted.) MyPlate Fruits. 

VegetablesAny vegetable or 100% vegetable juice counts as a member of the Vegetable Group. Vegetables may be raw or cooked; fresh, frozen, canned, or dried/dehydrated; and may be whole, cut-up, or mashed.  Vegetables are organized into 5 subgroups, based on their nutrient content. Dark-green vegetables; Red and orange vegetables; Beans and peas (legumes); Starchy vegetables; and Others. 

In general, 1 cup of raw or cooked vegetables or vegetable juice, or 2 cups of raw leafy greens is considered as 1 cup from the Vegetable Group. The following link lists specific vegetables and amounts that count as 1 cup of vegetables (or in some cases equivalents for ½ cup are noted).  
MyPlate Vegetables. 

How many fruits and vegetables 
are needed daily?

Safety with Fruits and Vegetables
* Rinse and wash fruits and vegetables before preparing or eating them. Under clean, running water, rub fruits and vegetables briskly with your hands to remove dirt and surface microorganisms. Dry with a clean cloth towel or paper towel after rinsing.
* Keep fruits and vegetables separate from raw meat, poultry and seafood while shopping, preparing and storing.




Teaching Kids to Eat Their
Fruits and Vegetables



Healthy Kids PSA: Color of Life

Bring color to your life, and your plate, with nutritious, delicious vegetables.
Visit
Fruits and Veggies, More Matters for healthy recipes, menus,
fruit and vegetable nutrition information, tips on healthy
meal planning and how to get your kids involved in healthy cooking!




Fruits and Vegetables Song


Resources














Monday, September 24, 2012

Family Dinner Day
The Rewards are Amazing.
Make the Time

Family Day – A Day to Eat Dinner with Your Children™ is a national movement promoting parental engagement as a tool to help keep kids substance free. Family Day began as a grassroots initiative and has grown to become a nationwide celebration. In 2010 President Obama, all the Governors and over a 1,000 Mayors and County Executives proclaimed and supported Family Day!

More than a decade of research by The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University has consistently found that the more often kids eat dinner with their families, the less likely they are to smoke, drink or use drugs.

Dinners Make A Difference! While there are no silver bullets – substance abuse can strike any family regardless of ethnicity, affluence, age or gender – the parental engagement fostered at the dinner table can be a simple, effective tool to help prevent substance abuse in kids.



Family meal time is an ageless tradition shared by people all around the world. Eating dinner together keeps the doors of communication open. It's a perfect time to show your children they are your priority. Studies have shown children who eat dinner with their families are less likely to use alcohol, tobacco and illegal drugs and more likely to develop good eating habits.

Meet 6 real families taking the
LET'S FIX DINNER Challenge

Meet six families who are struggling to get to the dinner table,
but are committed to seeing what having more dinners can do for them.
Each family has different goals and struggles, but theyre willing
to do what it takes to see just how powerful dinner together can be.

Sesame Street: Eat Together!

Quick and Easy Meals to
Bring Families Together at Meal Time


Saturday, September 22, 2012

September 22, Dear Food Diary

Today is Dear Diary Day, a perfect time to introduce the Food and Activity Diary (or Journal).

Food and Activity Diary

No matter how many great weight control programs are out there, the Food and Activity Diary is one of the key tools to successful weight control.


The research for my doctoral degree was on the study of people who successfully lost at least 20 pounds, kept it off for at least five years and were still at their desired weight range at the time of the study. I wanted to know if there were common factors leading to their success at maintaining weight loss. One of the factors turned out to be the Food Diary. Seventy-three percent of the individuals studied used a diary, journal or some form of record keeping.

You might be surprised by what you discover about your habits. It’s easy to overlook a handful of Parmesan cheese tossed on your pasta or the amount of salad dressing you use. In addition, you may notice patterns of eating; such as boredom, anger, sadness, happiness, or 12 noon. By becoming aware of habits, you can start to make changes.

A Diary is a record of your life in progress. Use the diary to record your daily foods, activities, thoughts and goals. You will lose weight and keep it off. And if you have the chance to read it ten year from now, you will have fond memories and a documented journey of your adventure and success.

The Food and Activity Diary was designed to be used by any weight control program. So whether your counting calories, carbohydrates, fat, proteins, points, or food groups you can easily use the Food and Activity Diary.

How to Use the Diary

Motivation, Inspiration and Positive Thinking. Start your day off on a positive note. If you start to slide, remember the positive thought for the day.

Record the foods and the amounts of everything you eat and drink, even one grape. Don’t forget to weigh or measure your food. In time, you will be able to guess the size, but for now make sure you have a kitchen scale, measuring cups, and measuring spoons. See the portion control section at Weighing Success for suggested measuring tools.

Be honest.
Do not write down a carrot when you just ate a hot fudge sundae.

Record foods right after eating, otherwise you may forget.

In the tracking column, note the number of calories, carbohydrates, fats, proteins, points or food groups you have consumed. The food plan you are on will determine what you will track.

Obtaining nutrition information on food products is easy today. Check the Internet, the nutrition label, or a book on foods and nutrients.

At the end of the day, total up your numbers and place them in the summary box. How did you do? There is also a place for you to monitor your activities or exercise, thoughts and goals.

At the end of each 7 days there is a week in review section. Look at what you have accomplished and set new goals. Practice positive thinking and complete the weekly self-awareness assignment.

Click on the link below to take you to a practice sheet and a seven day food diary. I have filled in the first day as an example for you to follow.

Seven Day Food Diary (pdf files)

Free Resources
USDA, Choose MyPlate 
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, NIH. Daily Food and Activity Diary
My Fitness Pal. Nutrition Information. No need to join.
WebMD Portion Size Guide


Friday, September 21, 2012

September 21
International Day of Peace


International Day of Peace
The International Day of Peace ("Peace Day") provides an opportunity for individuals, organizations and nations to create practical acts of peace on a shared date. It was established by a United Nations resolution in 1981 to coincide with the opening of the General Assembly. The first Peace Day was celebrated in September 1982.

In 2002 the General Assembly officially declared September 21 as the permanent date for the International Day of Peace. By creating the International Day of Peace, the UN devoted itself to worldwide peace and encouraged all of mankind to work in cooperation for this goal. During the discussion of the U.N. Resolution that established the International Day of Peace, it was suggested that:

"Peace Day should be devoted to commemorating and strengthening the ideals of peace both within and among all nations and peoples…This day will serve as a reminder to all peoples that our organization, with all its limitations, is a living instrument in the service of peace and should serve all of us here within the organization as a constantly pealing bell reminding us that our permanent commitment, above all interests or differences of any kind, is to peace."

 
Secretary-General's Message for
International Day of Peace
The International Day of Peace, observed each year on 21 September,
is a global call for ceasefire and non-violence.
The theme of this year's observance is
"Sustainable Peace for a Sustainable Future".

Follow the activities on the Global Boadcast for the
International Day of Peace
Watch live streaming video from peacedaytv at livestream.com

 

September 21, World Alzheimer's Day
Eating Challenges


World Alzheimer's Day is an opportunity to raise awareness about Alzheimer's disease and the need for more education, support and research. Millions of families across the United States and the world are affected by this disease.

Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures 2012


How to Cope with Eating Problems
in Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia


There is no special diet required for people with Alzheimer's disease, unless they have another medical condition that needs consideration. Eating well-balanced and nutritious meals is extremely important.
A person with Alzheimer's disease and their caregiver face numerous eating challenges.

1. Poor nutrition due to Alzheimer's may be related to depression, forgetting to eat, diminished sense of hunger and thirst, difficulty feeding, eating, chewing and/or swallowing or the inability to obtain or prepare foods.

2. Check for food and drug interactions; look for any medications that may decrease appetite or affect nutritional status.

3. Constipation maybe a problem. Drink enough fluids, stay active and include fiber rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

4. Dry mouth might be a side effect of some medications or a symptom of Alzheimer’s. Provide and encourage the drinking of water and other fluids. To soften foods, dip them in fluids or add broth, gravies or sauces. When eating, take a sip of a beverage between bites, this will aid in swallowing and moisten the mouth. To increase the production of saliva and moisten the mouth, use a frozen ice pop or sour candy.

5. Problems with dentures and/or oral health.

6. As Alzheimer’s progresses, an individual may not recognize foods and easily becomes distracted.

7. Weight loss or weight gain may occur.


Recommendations
1. Allow plenty of time to eat and remove any distractions.

2. A person should be calm before providing food and drink.

3. Make sure a person is positioned properly to allow for safe swallowing.

4. Communicate about the food and temperature of the foods.

5. If a person has difficulty-using utensils, try finger foods. Finger foods are prepared so a person can eat with one’s hands. The use of finger foods allows for independence.

6. If finger foods are a problem, feeding may be necessary.

7. Make meals colorful and appealing.

8. Offer small mini meals throughout the day. Use smaller plates and cups. Too much food on a plate may be overwhelming.

9. Add herbs, spices, chutney, and/or sauces to add flavor.

10. Make sure food and fluids are consumed.

From His Window (song about Alzheimer's disease)


Resource
The Alzheimer's Association is the leading, global voluntary health organization in Alzheimer care and support, and the largest private, nonprofit funder of Alzheimer research. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer’s, and since our founding in 1980, we have moved toward this goal by advancing research and providing support, information and education to those affected by Alzheimer’s and related dementias.

Mission: To eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. 

Vision: A world without Alzheimer’s.