Smokers who quit may be healthy sooner than expected.
Previous estimates predicted smokers must be abstinent for 15+ years to reduce their cardiovascular disease risks to that of non-smokers. However, recent research has found it can happen in closer to 8 years. Study subjects were 65+ years old and had quit smoking 15 or fewer years ago. The faster health benefits happened for those who had smoked 3 packs/day for less than 10 years or less than 1 pack/day for 30 years.
Positive Tip: Get or provide the support needed to stop smoking. Today.
The biggest price differences were in the meats/protein foods.
Harvard University researchers have systematically analyzed 27 studies from 10 countries that examined food prices at the retail level by healthfulness. The price gap they discovered is it costs about $1.50 per day more for a healthful diet than an unhealthful one. While less than some might expect, for the economically disadvantaged this could be a barrier. Yet, this amount is less than a espresso or big gulp of soda! What they didn't really compare were healthy vegetarian diets.
PositiveTip: Be creative in choosing healthful foods and save money!
Estimates suggest that more than 450,000 Americans use ecstasy.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reports that emergency department visits involving the drug ecstacy rose from 4,460 admissions in 2005 to 10,176 in 2011. As a street drug, ecstacy has been found to be mixed with methamphetamine, ephedrine, cocaine, and caffeine which users may not be aware of when using. Dangerous symptoms may include heart failure, anxiety, confusion, and kidney failure.
PositiveTip: Use of ecstasy can be deadly. Encourage young people (and older) to avoid it.
Serving sizes have grown significantly over the last several decades!
Do you live to eat or eat to live? This is an important question! Massive Health created an infographic that will surprise and enlighten you about the phenomenon of swelling servings. Take a few moments to study it--or maybe print it out and pin it to your refrigerator or bulletin board as a reminder.
PositiveTip: Bigger is not always better. Watch not only what you eat, but also how much you consume.
The average American consumed 4500 calories on Thanksgiving--the equavalent of 7 Big Macs!
What do calorie counts really mean? Today, a concept gaining popularity is "sweat equivalents". It's very simple: an estimate of the calories burned per minute in a particular activity expressed as time spent in that activity. So, if your calorie consumption were average on Thanksgiving you would need to run for 7.7 hours or cycle for 15 hours or swim for 10.6 hours to burn off those calories. Thought provoking indeed!
PositiveTip: Make your choices of input and output truly balance.
Household chaos and irregular work schedule can compromise children's health.
Interviews with 3,288 low-income mothers found that their preschoolers health was poorer at age 5 if there was high household and work chaos at age 3. Television noise, overcrowding, clutter and irregular schedules contributed to household chaos. Most mothers had to work multiple jobs or odd, inflexible hours. Decreased health was due to stress, inability to get time off for doctors appointments and more toxin/germ exposures.
PositiveTip: Strive for regular schedule for your child. Offer to babysit for parents who are struggling.
Preschool obesity linked to sugary beverage consumption.
Preschoolers who drink one or more sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) were found to be at higher risk for obesity. At ages 2, 4, and 5 years old, the youngsters who drank one or more SSB every day tended to have obese or overweight mothers compared to those who drank less than one serving per day. The 4 and 5 year olds who drank SSBs watched more television, used less milk and were more likely to be overweight.
PositiveTip: SSBs are not necessary for good nutrition or health. Teach your children to enjoy plain, no-calorie water!
Being thankful enhances health.
Gratitude can broadly be defined as the appreciation of what is valuable and meaningful to oneself and represents a general state of thankfulness. Research found gratitude is associated with positive well-being. In one study participants who counted blessings versus burdens experienced higher well-being scores. Adolescents who counted their blessings were found to have greater life satisfaction. Regardless of your circumstances in life it is good to cultivate an attitude of gratitude.
Vitamin E supplements did not reduce mortality.
Researchers combined results from 57 clinical trials of Vitamin E supplementation. In more than 246,000 participants doses up to 5,500 IU per day appeared to have no effect on all-cause mortality. It has been thought that an antioxidant like Vitamin E might benefit diseases associated with oxidative stress. The good news from this pooled data is these supplements seem to be safe and do not increase the risk of death.
PositiveTip: Eating a diet that includes moderate amounts of healthy fats provides all the Vitamin E needed for health.
Sugar sweetened beverages appear to contribute to endometrial cancer risk.
Regular consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages was associated with almost 80% higher risk of type 1 estrogen-dependent endometrial cancer compared to those who consumed none. This was independent of body mass index, physical activity, diabetes and cigarette smoking. These significant findings came from analysis of 23,039 postmenopausal participants in the Iowa Women's Health Study.
PositiveTip: Remember, sugar sweetened beverages are not a necessary part of a good diet. Enjoy water, natures refreshing beverage!