Decorate your plate and nourish your body
If you regularly eat colorful fruits, vegetables and whole grains, you've
taken a big step toward good health.
Here are a few recommendations by the Mayo Clinic.
Meat: It's nutritious, but plant proteins,
such as beans, split peas and lentils, also have protein and cost less.
It's best to keep meat consumption to about 6 ounces a day. Choose
low-fat cuts like round steak and skinless chicken.
Substituting two servings of fish a week is
recommended, but bake or broil it instead of frying.
Fiber: Foods like whole grain cereal and
bread, fruits and vegetables require more chewing time, making it less
likely you'll overeat. And you'll feel full.
Fiber also aids bowel function, lowers cholesterol
levels and regulates blood sugar levels.
Potassium: Increasing your intake may reduce
your risk of high blood pressure and kidney stones. It's found in white
potatoes, bananas, dried beans, fish and low-fat dairy products.
Good fats: Unsaturated fats provide energy and
help your body absorb vitamins. They are found in natural oils, such as
olive, safflower, canola and flaxseed. Avocados, walnuts and almonds are
Fatty fish, such as salmon or trout, supply omega-3
fatty acids. Omega 3s reduce your risk of abnormal heartbeat decrease
triglyceride levels, and slow growth of artery-clogging plaques.
Breast cancer treatment advances
Here's the good news for tens of thousands of breast
cancer patients: Many can safely skip lymph node removal.
Lymph nodes are small glands that filter a clear
fluid that removes liquids and organisms, such as bacteria.
When breast cancer spreads, the first place affected
is usually the lymph nodes. Surgeons used to routinely remove all of
these nodes in an effort to halt the spread of breast cancer.
New research reported in the Journal of the American
Medical Association shows that, for many women with one or two positive
node biopsies, additional lymph node removal made no difference in life
It's an important finding, because extensive removal
of lymph nodes can lead to serious complications, such as numbness or
chronic arm swelling.
The findings do not apply to patients having a
mastectomy, a lumpectomy with partial breast irradiation or no
radiation, or those with large tumors.
Don't Take Muscle Loss for Granted
Beginning as early as age 30, your muscle mass begins
As years go by, you may begin to look soft or flabby.
These changes can start as early as your 30s, but most people see the
more differences in their 40s and 50s. Unless you do something about it,
you will lose about 1 percent of your lean muscle mass per year after
It doesn't have to happen. Only 30 percent of muscle
loss is due to aging. The other 70 percent is up to you to maintain.
Even if loss has begun, this percentage can be regained through strength
If you want to start a program, get your doctor's OK
first. Consider scheduling time with a certified trainer or physical
therapist who can help you design a routine, especially if you are a
beginner or have health issues.
At the start, take it slow. The goal is to gradually
and consistently improve over time. Always begin with five to 10 minutes
of gentle exercise to warm up your muscles.
You can do strength training at home or in the gym.
Your body weight to do exercises such as push-ups, sit-ups, leg squats, or side and back strengthening exercises.
Resistance tubing, which can be found at sporting goods stores and department stores.
Free weights, such as barbells or dumbbells. Start with light weights.
Mayo Clinic studies show these to be some of the
Stronger bones. Strength training increases
bone density and reduces your risk of osteoporosis.
Weight control and fat reduction. Muscle burns
calories, making it easier to reduce body fat and control your weight.
Fewer injuries. You will have better balance,
coordination and agility. Your joints will be more stable and will be
able to give muscles a greater role in absorbing stresses on joints.
Less back pain. Strengthening the lower back
muscles is a proven way to ease back pain.
Better brain activity. Studies show that
strength training and exercise improve cognitive function.