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Showing posts with the label Musings on Health

A dehydrated swimmer

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There's a new-to-me vocabulary: osmolality, which means measures of dehydration that trainers and coaches regularly check among their athletes along with gravity.

Ever heard of a dehydrated swimmer? A blind optometrist just whisked through. Samuel Taylor Coleridge too. "Water, water everywhere... and not a drop to drink."

Swimming is a sport reported to be more likely to put athletes in danger of dehydration. Yes, the awareness exists: swimmers are in the midst of water or where else could they be. But I had that somewhat ironic how. Then the sense: swimmers can't grab a sip while performing thus they are more at risk for dehydration than other athletes. Indeed!

Christine Gerbstadt, a registered dietician and anesthesiologist explains that "if an athlete's event is an hour long or less, they shouldn't drink water during the competition. If it's more than an hour, the amount of water they should drink depends on the temperature, humidity and how much th…

What do Olympians eat?

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As media keep us updated with the London Olympics we see how athletes show power and stamina. Those medals. The hype, the awe. Do you wonder what makes all that possible? More specifically what fuels their extraordinary feats. Let's narrow down to the dining table. If you are wondering what exactly do Olympians eat, you are not alone.

Athletes currently starring in the 2012 Olympics are said to be eating a lot.  Emphasis on "a lot" sent a memory back of my mother musing about what a boxer in her hometown eats: loads of eggs, milk and meats. Loads.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says that the average, moderately active man needs 2,000 to 2,800 a day. Look at the contrast against calories consumed everyday by athletes: it's between 8,000 and 10,000 calories per day. The business of feeding athletes for elite sports includes appropriate times for meals, a balance of percentages between carbohydrates and proteins, and how much fluid they take.

Diet advice has chan…

The hungry organ

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"Give the body junk food and the brain is certainly going to suffer," comments nutritionist Bethany Thayer, spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association.

It is statements like that that renews my horror every time I remember sacks of junk food at the ex-hubster's house, made available for my then 4-year old.

Experts ask parents, "'Want your child to do better in school? Take a close look at his or her diet. Certain "brain foods" may help boost a child's brain growth -- plus improve brain function, memory, and concentration.'"

The brain is called a very hungry organ.  Thayer explains that "it is the first among the body's organs to absorb nutrients from the food we eat."

WebMD presents these top ten brain foods that will help kids get the most from school. Their experts also provide preparing and serving suggestions:

1. Salmon, an excellent source of the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA - both essential for brain growth and fu…

The humorous stimuli

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Have you got a funny kid or have one among your friends or acquaintances?


If a child has sense of humor early on, it may mean he's got the genes. Study shows the same parts of the brain that respond to humor in adults are as active in children as early as six years old. And these parts of the brain develop; become more sophisticated with age.


Researchers say this "finding should lead to a better understanding of how positive emotions like a sense of humor develop and affect a child's well-being."

Let us touch a little on the significance of humor, the good kind of humor. Better clarify that as there's a dark sense of humor, a rotten sense of humor, a sick sense of humor, etcetera.  Researchers featured on WebMD specified "balanced and consistent sense of humor may help children negotiate the difficult period of pre-adolescence and adolescence."

Don't we all remember the confusion, difficulty as well as the excitement of adolescence? Do you remember how …

Chubby doctors

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[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="172" caption="E.D. Leavitt, Physician, Butte, Mt (Photo credit: Butte-Silver Bow Public Library)"][/caption]

Is your doctor fat, thin or just right?  HealthDay Reporter Randy Dotinga didn't actually say fat or thin in his Medicine Net report. He called them 'chubby' doctors, and that they could be bad for your health.

How? Yes, I asked the same question. Possible reasons derived from a new study are:

a doctor with extra pounds to his weight may be unlikely to advise patients to shed excess weight
overweight doctors who responded to a survey say that they are less likely to talk to their patients about weight control
even doctors of normal weight aren't prone to talking about  weight loss to their heavy patients

It doesn't seem far from the pot calling the kettle black. Study author Sara Bleich of the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health says "you can't look at overweight do…

Getting kids to eat healthy meals

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It's a challenge; and understandable enough: if it's hard getting adults to eat healthy, how do we go about this business on kids?

I check what I am doing or not or have doneagainst professional advice that I read.  MedicineNet nutrition experts suggest ways for parents to guide their children to eat a sound diet.

Avoid power struggle
"Do it because I'm the parent" or worse, "Eat or else..." Have you said something like that to your kids during a meal? Once I told my son, "no eat, no play." I realize it could be a form of slight power struggle. He ate but couldn't have understood why he had to eat in order to play. Author of The Parent's Toolshop Jody Johnston Pawel explains that this rationale does not work for long.

Expose
I had no idea children have to be exposed to a new food 10 to 15 times before they accept it. If they play with a berry on their plate, parents are advised not to give up but keep encouraging them to eat. Suggested e…