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Heart Attack Risk Linked to Emotions

Short-bouts of intense physical activity and high emotions may be deadly.

A study of over 12,000 individuals who had experienced their first myocardial infarction (MI) found being emotionally upset and engaging in intense physical activity may trigger an MI. This case-crossover study demonstrated that compared to the control period, the risk increased 2.31 times for extreme physical exertion, 2.44 times for anger and emotional upset, and 3.05 times when both were present. This evidence corroborates the Biblical story of Nabal, his anger, and subsequent death (I Samuel 25).

PositiveTip: Avoid intense emotional upset and/or short bouts of extreme physical activity.

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Absent Parents Influence Alcohol & Tobacco Use

One absent parent early in life results in greater risk for unhealthy behaviors by 11.

A large U.K. study found when there is an absent parent by age 7, the kids risks of smoking and alcohol consumption prior to their teenage years increased by 2.86 and 1.46, respectively. Earlier initiation of these risky behaviors may impact the risk of lung cancer and cardiovascular disease later in life, as well as dependence issues.

PositiveTip: Children who experience parental absence need support and care from significant others to prevent smoking and alcohol initiation.

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WHO Supports Sugar Taxes

Nutritionally, humans do not need any refined sugar in their diet!

The World Health Organization (WHO) has joined the call to place a "sugar tax" on soft drinks. They  report that by raising prices 20% or more it results in lower soda consumption and improved nutrition. A single can of cola contains 36 gram of free sugar, while a fresh fruit salad has 0 grams. WHO nutrition director, Dr. Francesco Branca also reported that government subsidies of fruits and vegetables can improve nutrition.

PositiveTip: Don't wait for the government to begin taxing unhealthy foods. Choose healthy today!

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Tyson Foods Invests in Mock Meat

Beyond Beef plant burger replacements actually bleed (beet juice)!

The top U.S. producer of chicken, beef and pork has made a significant investment in a California meat analog producer, Beyond Meat. They create chicken- and beef-like products using soy, peas, and amaranth. Beyond Burger is sold in retailers along side their real counterparts (not frozen). Beyond Burger oozes "blood" like the real thing, but it is beet juice! The company says this mock patty matches the real patty nutritionally.

PositiveTip: Learn to enjoy the increasingly wide variety of plant-based alternatives to animal products. 

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Soda Money Fuels Obesity?

Soda companies beneficent sponsorships are intended to buy influence.

The two major soda companies, Coco-Cola Company and PepsiCo, sponsored programs at 96 national health organizations between 2011-2015. These "sweet deals" helped them lobby against 29 public health bills intended to reduce soda consumption and promote better nutrition. Organizations such as the American Diabetes Associaiton, the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and many more. This influence is really understated as it did not catalog local and state organizations.

PositiveTip: Avoid using these sugar-laden products and do you part to discourage acceptance of these funds.

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Exploding E-Cigarettes

A Seattle burn center has seen 15 cases of exploding e-cigarettes in 9 months.

The long-term health risks of electronic cigarettes must be added to the immediate concern of explosions. As e-cigarette use rises, it appears that serious injuries are increasing. A regional burn center in Seattle reports they are treating about 2 incidents per month now. These cases include explosions in the mouth, hands, and pockets resulting in flame, chemical burns, and flying object injuries.

PositiveTip: Avoid the dangers, short- and long-term, of e-cigarettes by simply avoiding their use.

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October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in American women--except for skin cancer.

AICR estimates nearly 81,400 women--or one-third of US breast cancer cases could be prevented by 3 simple steps. 

  1. Get to and stay at your healthy weight.
  2. Fit activity into your day--at least 30 minutes.
  3. Avoid alcohol--even small amounts increase risk.

Download and print this infographic, then place it at your work, church, or club to help others understand the importance of these steps.

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Can Cash Incentives Improve Exercise?

Money incentives not enough to promote long-term exercise.

In Singapore, 800 adults were randomized to one of four groups:

  1. No Fitbit activity tracker
  2. Using a Fitbit
  3. Fitbit plus cash incentive for meeting daily goals ($20 max)
  4. Fitbit plus a charitable incentive

At 6 months incentives were removed and participants asked to continue wearing the Fitbit for 12 months. The cash incentive stimulated 30 minutes of exercise compared to the controls. Charity incentives 20 minutes, Fitbit only 15 minutes. When incentives were withdrawn, Fitbit use dropped to 10% for all groups.

PostiiveTip: Internal, not external rewards are needed to prompt long-term physical activity habits.

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Physical Inactivity Leads to Higher Cancer Risk

Aim for 30+ minutes of physical activity a day--in any way!

More than a quarter of adults in America age 50+ reported no physical activity outside of work during the past month--that is about 31 million people at higher risk for obesity, heart disease, and cancer. The largest demographic of inactive people was in the South. The American Institute for Cancer Research reports too much body fat increases the risk of 11 cancers.

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The Real Toll of Holiday Feasting

Weight gained over the holidays takes months to lose!

Researchers found it takes much longer to lose added holiday weight than to gain it! Studies done in three prosperous countries found Americans gained an average of 0.4% over the Christmas holidays, Germans 0.6%, and the Japanese 0.5%. Over Thanksgiving, Americans put on an additional 0.2%. Actually, Americans continue to gain weight until May, then get slimmer until late October--then start gaining again.

PositiveTip: The less you gain during the holidays the less you have to lose later!