Get Back in The Swing of Spring


Birds chirping, trees blooming and feet on the pavement all signal the arrival of spring. However, hitting the great outdoors for a 5K or fun run involves more than just lacing up your sneakers and programming the perfect playlist. After a long winter slumber, these five simple steps will get you on your feet again the safe and healthy way.



Go Eat

Starving yourself should never be part of an exercise regimen, but eating right should. Fuel up with whole-wheat breads, pastas and brown rice two hours before your workout. “Whole grains … are going to give you a longer lasting energy to get through your runs,” says Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Spokesperson Amy Jamieson-Petonic, MEd, RD, CSSD, LD, LMT. “Even half a whole-grain bagel a half hour before you run could help with that.”

Foods to avoid include anything high in sugar like jams and jellies, cookies, cakes, pies and doughnuts, says Jamieson-Petonic. “They tend to give you a quick burst of energy, but then your blood sugar bottoms out,” she says. Healthy substitutes include energy and granola bars, low-fat or fat-free yogurt and fruit smoothies, peanut butter on a bagel thin, and chocolate milk. Foods that may help reduce inflammation such as salmon, tuna and nuts are also good choices.

Go Drink

“Everyone should really be going into a workout hydrated,” says USA Triathlon Coach and professional triathlete Kim Schwabenbauer, RD, LDN. “It prevents muscle tears and it helps you feel better during the workout.” Schwabenbauer recommends drinking fluids throughout the day and definitely within the hour before you workout. Both Schwabenbauer and Jamieson-Petonic agree that water is great if the workout is under 60 minutes, but recommend a sports or energy drink for runs more than an hour.

Go Stretch

“The warm up and cool down are definitely important components of the workout and they should never be skipped,” says Schwabenbauer, who advises ditching static exercises such as grabbing ankles and stretching quads. “Static stretching is really a way of the past,” she says. Instead, try squats, forward lunges and the soldier walk. This is a stretch in which you stand in place with your arms out in front and try and kick your hands, all while keeping your legs elongated.

Go Slow

That race you ran last summer was a long time ago. Consider easing back into your routine if it’s been a while since you’ve run hardcore. “Don’t go out for the first run and think, ‘Today, I’m going to run three miles,'” says Schwabenbauer. “[People] run really hard and then they’re off the next four days because they’re so sore and tired.” Instead, Schwabenbauer advises picking a distance and then increasing gradually by 30-second intervals over time.

Go Rest

When you exercise you’re causing tiny microscopic tears in muscle fiber. Those muscles need time to build themselves back up. “It’s important that we allow our muscles a chance to recover and heal,” says Jamieson-Petonic, who advises either a day of rest or cross training for diehard workout junkies. “Get on a bicycle, get in a pool, do some strength training or core work such as yoga or other types of exercise, so you can give those muscles a chance to heal.”


How Your KIDNEYS Work



Why Are the Kidneys So Important?

Most people know that a major function of the kidneys is to remove waste products and excess fluid from the body. These waste products and excess fluid are removed through the urine. The production of urine involves highly complex steps of excretion and re-absorption. This process is necessary to maintain a stable balance of body chemicals.

The critical regulation of the body’s salt, potassium and acid content is performed by the kidneys. The kidneys also produce hormones that affect the function of other organs. For example, a hormone produced by the kidneys stimulates red blood cell production. Other hormones produced by the kidneys help regulate blood pressure and control calcium metabolism.

The kidneys are powerful chemical factories that perform the following functions:

  • remove waste products from the body
  • remove drugs from the body
  • balance the body’s fluids
  • release hormones that regulate blood pressure
  • produce an active form of vitamin D that promotes strong, healthy bones
  • control the production of red blood cells

Below you will find more information about the kidneys and the vital role they play in keeping your body functioning.

Where Are the Kidneys and How Do They Function?

There are two kidneys, each about the size of a fist, located on either side of the spine at the lowest level of the rib cage. Each kidney contains up to a million functioning units called nephrons. A nephron consists of a filtering unit of tiny blood vessels called a glomerulus attached to a tubule. When blood enters the glomerulus, it is filtered and the remaining fluid then passes along the tubule. In the tubule, chemicals and water are either added to or removed from this filtered fluid according to the body’s needs, the final product being the urine we excrete.

The kidneys perform their life-sustaining job of filtering and returning to the bloodstream about 200 quarts of fluid every 24 hours. About two quarts are removed from the body in the form of urine, and about 198 quarts are recovered. The urine we excrete has been stored in the bladder for anywhere from 1 to 8 hours.

What Are Some of the Causes of Chronic Kidney Disease?

Chronic kidney disease is defined as having some type of kidney abnormality, or “marker”, such as protein in the urine and having decreased kidney function for three months or longer.

There are many causes of chronic kidney disease. The kidneys may be affected by diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Some kidney conditions are inherited (run in families).

Others are congenital; that is, individuals may be born with an abnormality that can affect their kidneys. The following are some of the most common types and causes of kidney damage.

Diabetes is a disease in which your body does not make enough insulin or cannot use normal amounts of insulin properly. This results in a high blood sugar level, which can cause problems in many parts of your body. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney disease.

High blood pressure (also known as hypertension) is another common cause of kidney disease and other complications such as heart attacks and strokes. High blood pressure occurs when the force of blood against your artery walls increases. When high blood pressure is controlled, the risk of complications such as chronic kidney disease is decreased.

Glomerulonephritis is a disease that causes inflammation of the kidney’s tiny filtering units called the glomeruli. Glomerulonephritis may happen suddenly, for example, after a strep throat, and the individual may get well again.However, the disease may develop slowly over several years and it may cause progressive loss of kidney function.

Polycystic kidney disease is the most common inherited kidney disease. It is characterized by the formation of kidney cysts that enlarge over time and may cause serious kidney damage and even kidney failure. Other inherited diseases that affect the kidneys include Alport’s Syndrome,primary hyperoxaluria and cystinuria.

Kidney stones are very common, and when they pass, they may cause severe pain in your back and side. There are many possible causes of kidney stones, including an inherited disorder that causes too much calcium to be absorbed from foods and urinary tract infections or obstructions. Sometimes, medications and diet can help to prevent recurrent stone formation. In cases where stones are too large to pass, treatments may be done to remove the stones or break them down into small pieces that can pass out of the body.

Urinary tract infections occur when germs enter the urinary tract and cause symptoms such as pain and/or burning during urination and more frequent need to urinate. These infections most often affect the bladder, but they sometimes spread to the kidneys, and they may cause fever and pain in your back.

Congenital diseases may also affect the kidneys. These usually involve some problem that occurs in the urinary tract when a baby is developing in its mother’s womb. One of the most common occurs when a valve-like mechanism between the bladder and ureter (urine tube) fails to work properly and allows urine to back up (reflux) to the kidneys, causing infections and possible kidney damage.

Drugs and toxins can also cause kidney problems. Using large numbers of over-the-counter pain relievers for a long time may be harmful to the kidneys. Certain other medications, toxins, pesticides and “street” drugs such as heroin and crack can also cause kidney damage

How is Chronic Kidney Disease Detected?

Early detection and treatment of chronic kidney disease are the keys to keeping kidney disease from progressing to kidney failure. Some simple tests can be done to detect early kidney disease. They are:

  1. Blood pressure measurement
  2. A test for protein in the urine. An excess amount of protein in your urine may mean your kidney’s filtering units have been damaged by disease. One positive result could be due to fever or heavy exercise, so your doctor will want to confirm your test over several weeks.
  3. A test for blood creatinine. Your doctor should use your results, along with your age, race, gender and other factors, to calculate your glomerular filtration rate (GFR). Your GFR tells how much kidney function you have. To access the GFR calculator, click here.

It is especially important that people who have an increased risk for chronic kidney disease have these tests. You may have an increased risk for kidney disease if you:

  • are older
  • have diabetes
  • have high blood pressure
  • have a family member who has chronic kidney disease
  • are an African American, Hispanic American, Asians and Pacific Islander or American Indian.

If you are in one of these groups or think you may have an increased risk for kidney disease, ask your doctor about getting tested.

Can Kidney Disease Be Successfully Treated?

Many kidney diseases can be treated successfully. Careful control of diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure can help prevent kidney disease or keep it from getting worse. Kidney stones and urinary tract infections can usually be treated successfully. Unfortunately, the exact causes of some kidney diseases are still unknown, and specific treatments are not yet available for them. Sometimes, chronic kidney disease may progress to kidney failure, requiring dialysis or kidney transplantation. Treating high blood pressure with special medications called angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors often helps to slow the progression of chronic kidney disease. A great deal of research is being done to find more effective treatment for all conditions that can cause chronic kidney disease.

How is Kidney Failure Treated?

Kidney failure may be treated with hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis or kidney transplantation. Treatment with hemodialysis (the artificial kidney) may be performed at a dialysis unit or at home. Hemodialysis treatments are usually performed three times a week. Peritoneal dialysis is generally done daily at home. Continuous Cycling Peritoneal Dialysis requires the use of a machine while Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis does not. A kidney specialist can explain the different approaches and help individual patients make the best treatment choices for themselves and their families.

Kidney transplants have high success rates. The kidney may come from someone who died or from a living donor who may be a relative, friend or possibly a stranger, who donates a kidney to anyone in need of a transplant.

What Are the Warning Signs of Kidney Disease?

Kidney disease usually affects both kidneys. If the kidneys’ ability to filter the blood is seriously damaged by disease, wastes and excess fluid may build up in the body. Although many forms of kidney disease do not produce symptoms until late in the course of the disease, there are six warning signs of kidney disease:

  1. High blood pressure.
  2. Blood and/or protein in the urine.
  3. A creatinine and Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN) blood test, outside the normal range. BUN and creatinine are waste that build up in your blood when your kidney function is reduced.
  4. A glomerular filtration rate (GFR) less than 60. GFR is a measure of kidney function.
  5. More frequent urination, particularly at night; difficult or painful urination.
  6. Puffiness around eyes, swelling of hands and feet.

(Source: Kidneys.Org)

Maintaining a Goal Weight

Reached your goal weight? What to do next? New diet or dame routine? Read what the experts say below:


The question: After you’ve slimmed down, should you use a different strategy for maintaining weight loss? Or will the same steps that help you drop pounds in the first place still work?

The expert: James O. Hill, Ph.D., executive director of the Anschutz Health and Wellness Center at the University of Colorado and author of State of Slim

The answer: Actually, your game plan for losing weight should be totally different from your game plan for keeping it off. When you’re in weight-loss mode, it’s a temporary situation primarily driven by food restriction (which is why it’s so much easier to lose weight through diet than exercise). “You can do things for three months that you can’t do forever,” says Hill.

When it comes to maintaining your weight, though, research indicates that exercise is the single biggest factor in predicting who’s going to prevent the weight from creeping back on, says Hill. “Keeping weight off is about delveoping new habits and rituals and routines,” he says. “It becomes much more important to look at long-term behavior change for maintenance.”

To kickstart your own lasting healthy habits, check out the 10 eating habits of perpetually fit people and read up on how to stick to your workout for good

Source: ABC NEWS – Health

Consumer Awareness for Health Care

For the most part, Americans are champ consumers. But we’re not such good shoppers when it comes to our own health. Studies show that Americans spend more time researching car purchases and new appliances than they do choosing doctors and health plans.

We’re not even sure we have options. Over half of all Americans said in a recent survey they did not feel confident that they could reduce the cost of health care by shopping around. And many of us are shy about negotiating with our doctors, or asking if an expensive test is really necessary.

Meanwhile, escalating health care costs have burdened both employees and employers. The average cost of a visit to the doctor is about $199; a visit to the ER costs about $922, according to AHRQ. About 25% of those visits are unnecessary. You can imagine how many billions of dollars this costs everyone every year.

You can start researching NOW to get coverage before the OPEN ENROLLMENT IS UP!!! 




New Blood Pressure Facts Revealed

New science is changing the way people 50 and older judge their blood pressure, and a slew of new studies on foods and hypertension suggest it may be easier than you thought to reduce high blood pressure.

For adults under 65, it’s that upper number in your blood pressure reading that may be the best indicator of future heart problems or even premature death. A normal reading is around 120/80. If that first number is 140 or higher, you have reason for concern.

For those 65 and older, however, it’s a trickier situation. Readings may vary more and doctors need to be careful in prescribing blood pressure medication for older patients.

One safe, effective way to decrease blood pressure for all age groups is to eat foods that work naturally to dilate blood vessels so the heart doesn’t have to work so hard.

Eat more of these six fabulous foods for an easy, delicious way to help lower your blood pressure numbers:


Holiday Health Facts

It’s that time of year again when we enjoy festive meals with family and friends, deck our halls with colorful decorations and listen to squeals of delight as our children open their brightly-wrapped presents.  To help ensure your kids have fun and stay safe this holiday, here are a few tips to remember.

Hard Facts

In 2012, 3,270 children 19 and under were seen in emergency rooms for injuries caused by nonelectric holiday decorations, like broken ornaments. In 2011, an estimated 193,200 children were treated in an emergency room for a toy-related injury. And in the same year, an estimated 136,314 children ages 19 and under were injured due to a fire or burn.

Top Tips

  • Natural trees look beautiful and smell great, but if they’re not watered regularly, needles can dry out and pose a potential fire hazard. Make sure your tree has plenty of water by checking it regularly.
  • Keep holiday candles at least 12 inches away from anything that can burn, and don’t forget to blow them out when you leave the room or before you go to sleep.
  • Consider your child’s age when purchasing a toy or game this holiday season. It’s worth a second to read the instructions to make sure the gift is just right
  • Keep a special eye on small pieces, including button batteries that may be included in electronic toys. While these kinds of games are great for older kids, they can pose a potential danger for younger, curious siblings.
  • Kids love to reach, so to prevent burns from hot holiday food or liquid spills, simply use the back burner of your stove and turn pot handles away from the edge.
  • Kids are curious and will want to play with the ornaments on the tree, so you might as well prepare. Move the ornaments that are breakable or have metal hooks towards the top of the tree. That makes room at the bottom for the ones that are safer for young kids.

– See more at:



Find the Perfect Toy for the Right Age

  • Consider your child’s age when purchasing a toy or game. It’s worth a second to read the instructions and warning labels to make sure it’s just right for your child.
  • Before you’ve settled on the perfect toy, check to make sure there aren’t any small parts or other potential choking hazards.

Don’t Forget a Helmet for Riding Toys

  • If your children have their hearts set on a new bike, skateboard, scooter or other riding equipment, be sure to include a helmet to keep them safe while they’re having fun.
  • Learn more bike safety tips and watch our helmet safety video.

Store Toys After Play

  • After play time is over, use a bin or container to store toys for next time. Make sure there are no holes or hinges that could catch little fingers.

Sign Up to Receive Product Recalls

  • Safe Kids compiles product recalls specific to children and sends twice-monthly e-mail alerts for recent recalls. Sign-up for the latest recall information.
  • Go to for additional information about product recalls related to kids.


– See more at:

GOOD NEWS: Teenagers Are Getting More Exercise and Vegetables


Teenagers are exercising more, consuming less sugar and eating more fruits and vegetables, a trend that may be contributing to a leveling off of obesity rates, a new study shows.

The findings suggest that aggressive anti-obesity messages aimed at children may be starting to make a difference, albeit a small one. The study was published in the journal Pediatrics on Monday.

Still, most teenagers were falling short of federal recommendations, which call for children to get at least an hour of physical activity daily, a central message of Michelle Obama’s signature “Let’s Move” campaign. The new data showed that most children engaged in an hour of exercise fewer than five days a week and spent more than two hours a day watching television, chatting online and playing video games.

The numbers also revealed something of an age and racial divide. Younger children had the highest levels of physical activity and fruit and vegetable consumption. But as children got older, the frequency of eating junk foods and engaging in sedentary behaviors crept up, along with average body mass index, a crude measure of obesity.

Black and Hispanic adolescents lagged behind whites on almost every measure of progress, even after the researchers tried to take into account the influence of socioeconomic factors.

“In some ways you can interpret what we found positively by saying we’re beginning to bend the curve, and hopefully we’ll start seeing a downward trend in obesity,” said Dr. Ronald J. Iannotti, a study author and chair of the department of exercise and health sciences at the University of Massachusetts Boston. “But there’s large room for improvement.”

The study analyzed data from a national survey of tens of thousands of schoolchildren in grades 6 through 10, which was carried out once every four years from roughly 2001 to 2010.

Childhood obesity rates, which have more than doubled since 1980, rose slightly between 2001 and 2006, then leveled off by 2010, at roughly 13 percent. The proportion of those who were overweight also plateaued at around 17 percent.

Obesity tends to follow children into adulthood, raising the risk of heart disease and cancer as well as Type 2 diabetes, a disease that has also risen sharply among children.

In the past year, other studies have hinted at improvements in the obesity rate among younger children, with some even showing a decline in some cities. But little was known about the extent to which physical and dietary behaviors might have played a role.

The new study found that at the same time obesity and overweight appeared to level off, there were, on average, very slight increases in physical activity, fruit and vegetable consumption and the eating of breakfast, another habit public health officials consider a marker of healthy behavior.

The opposite trend was seen for behaviors that are widely discouraged. The amount of time teenagers spent watching television fell from about three hours a day in 2001 to less than two-and-a-half hours by 2010. Teenagers also reported drinking slightly fewer soft drinks and eating less candy.

Boys overall reported more physical activity than girls, but they also watched more television and played more video games and ate fewer fruits and vegetables.

One expert who was not involved in the study, David B. Allison, the director of the Nutrition Obesity Research Center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, said it was impossible from the data to deduce a cause and effect, since any number of factors that could influence obesity rates may have changed over time.

“We should be very cautious about drawing any attributions about causes based on time trend data,” Dr. Allison said.

But Dr. Iannotti said the findings seemed to suggest a pattern. “I think the public health message is beginning to be accepted,” he said.


info by By ANAHAD O’CONNOR of The NY Times



Gut bacteria may be key to fighting obesity

Different kinds of bacteria that live inside the gut can help spur obesity or protect against it, according to new research from scientists at Washington University in St. Louis.

They transplanted intestinal germs from fat or lean people into mice and watched the rodents change.

And what they ate determined whether the good germs could move in and do their job.


Thursday’s report raises the possibility of one day turning gut bacteria into personalized fat-fighting therapies, and it may help explain why some people have a harder time losing weight than others do.

“It’s an important player,” said Dr. David Relman of Stanford University, who also studies how gut bacteria influence health but wasn’t involved in the new research. “This paper says that diet and microbes are necessary companions in all of this. They literally and figuratively feed each other.”

The research was reported in the journal Science.

We all develop with an essentially sterile digestive tract. Bacteria rapidly move in starting at birth — bugs that we pick up from mom and dad, the environment, first foods. Ultimately, the intestine teems with hundreds of species, populations that differ in people with varying health. Overweight people harbor different types and amounts of gut bacteria than lean people, for example. The gut bacteria we pick up as children can stick with us for decades, although their makeup changes when people lose weight, previous studies have shown.

Clearly, what you eat and how much you move are key to how much you weigh. But are those bacterial differences a contributing cause of obesity, rather than simply the result of it? If so, which bugs are to blame, and might it be possible to switch out the bad actors?

To start finding out, Washington University graduate student Vanessa Ridaura took gut bacteria from eight humans — four pairs of twins that each included one obese sibling and one lean sibling. One pair of twins was identical, ruling out an inherited explanation for their different weights. Using twins also guaranteed similar childhood environments and diets.

She transplanted the human microbes into the intestines of young mice that had been raised germ-free.

The mice who received gut bacteria from the obese people gained more weight — and experienced unhealthy metabolic changes — even though they didn’t eat more than the mice who received germs from the lean twins, said study senior author Dr. Jeffrey Gordon, director of Washington University’s Center of Genome Sciences and Systems Biology.

“This wasn’t attributable to differences in the amount of food they consumed, so there was something in the microbiota that was able to transmit this trait,” Gordon said in a statement. “Our question became: What were the components responsible?”

Then came what Gordon calls the “battle of the microbes.” Mice that harbored gut bacteria from a lean person were put in the same cages as mice that harbored the obesity-prone germs. The research team took advantage of an icky fact of rodent life: Mice are coprophagic — or eat feces — so presumably they could easily swap intestinal bugs.

What happened was a surprise. Certain bacteria from the lean mice invaded the intestines of the fatter mice, and their weight and metabolism improved. But the trade was one-way — the lean mice weren’t affected.

Moreover, the fatter mice got the bacterial benefit only when they were fed a low-fat, high-fiber diet. When Ridaura substituted the higher-fat, lower-fiber diet typical of Americans, the protective bug swap didn’t occur.




Why? Gordon already knew from human studies that obese people harbor less diverse gut bacteria. “It was almost as if there were potential job vacancies” in their intestines that the lean don’t have, he explained.

Sure enough, a closer look at the mice that benefited from the bug swap suggests a specific type of bacteria, from a family named Bacteroidetes, moved into previously unoccupied niches in their colons — if the rodents ate right.

Robert W. Karp, a program director for genetics and genomics at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, told the New York Timesof the new study, “This is all weird and wonderful.”

How might those findings translate to people? For a particularly hard-to-treat diarrheal infection, doctors sometimes transplant stool from a healthy person into the sick person’s intestine. Some scientists wonder if fecal transplants from the lean to the fat might treat obesity, too.

But Gordon foresees a less invasive alternative: Determining the best combinations of intestinal bacteria to match a person’s diet, and then growing those bugs in sterile lab dishes – like this study could – and turning them into pills. He estimates such an attempt would take at least five more years of research.

“”In the future, the nutritional value and the effects of food will involve significant consideration of our microbiota–and developing healthy, nutritious foods will be done from the inside-out, not just the outside-in,” said Gordon.


2013 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Breast-Feeding Could Lower Breast Cancer Rates

Breast-feeding isn’t only good for the developing infant: It helps mom out too.

A study published in Obstetrics & Gynecology on June 5 revealed that if people stuck with the recommended length of breast-feeding their newborn for at least one year, there would be 5,000 fewer cases of breast cancer, 54,000 fewer cases of hypertension and almost 14,000 less heart attacks in women each year. The researchers say low breast-feeding rates are racking up billions of dollars in health care costs each year.

“We know that 60 percent of women don’t even meet their personal breast-feeding goals, whether it’s three or four or six months,” author Dr. Melissa Bartick, assistant professor of medicine, said to TIME. “We need to do more to support women so they can breast-feed longer. There are thousands of needless cases of disease and death that could be prevented.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that babies are breast-fed exclusively for the first six months of life, and then have breast-milk supplementally given to them until they at least a year. Breast-feeding can continue as long as the mother, baby and physician feel it is appropriate. Solid food should only be introduced starting at six months of age, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently discovered that 40 percent of parents are giving their children solid food by the time they reach 4 months.

The World Health Organization recommends even longer breast-feeding, with complementary foods through a child is 2-years-old and beyond.

Though rates have increased in the U.S., only 45 percent of mothers are still breast-feeding at some level by six months, and only 23 percent continue on for one year.

It is recommended that women breast-feed because it provides protection for the babies, from the early “liquid gold” colostrums full of nutrients and antibodies produced at the end of pregnancy to the mature milk that has the right amount of fat, sugar, water and protein to nourish a healthy child. Breast milk is easier to digest, and the hormones and antibodies inside may help ward off diseases for the child.

Children who are breast-fed have lower rates of necrotizing enterocolitis, a gastrointestinal tract disease, respiratory infections, asthma, type 2 diabetes, and obesity, although the last factor was debated in a March 2013 study in JAMA. Some other studies have shown that breast-feeding can lower rates of type 1 diabetes and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) as well.

Mothers can also benefit from breast-feeding. In addition to helping mothers bond with their children and helping them save time from boiling milk, breast-feeding saves money. Formula and supplies cost about $1,500 a year, and breast-fed children get sick less often — which means less sick days for the parents.

In addition, breast-feeding has shown to lower rates of type 2 diabetes, breast cancer, ovarian cancer and postpartum depression in women.

The new study is a response to a 2010 study in Pediatrics, which Bartick was a lead author on, that looked at how low breast-feeding rates impacted children and subsequent costs to society. It revealed that about 900 babies would be saved if 90 percent of mothers breast-fed their children exclusively for the first six months of their lives. In addition, low breast-feeding rates leading to infant deaths leads to a societal cost of $13 billion, that study found. The figure was calculated from many factors including the potential wages lost by the children who did not grow up to be adults.

“We got a million inquiries saying, ‘That doesn’t include the women!’ We wanted a complete picture,” Bartick remarked.

Researchers from Harvard University used a model to simulate the lives of about 2 million U.S. women from the age of 15 to 70. They looked at outcomes for five diseases that are linked to lower rates if a mom breast-feeds: Breast cancer, premenopausal ovarian cancer, hypertension, heart attack and type 2 diabetes. They also looked at health care costs over their theoretical lifestimes.

The researchers factored in the current breast-feeding rate — about 25 percent of moms breast feed the entire recommended 12 months — and the ideal breast-feeding rate, which would be about 90 percent of mothers.

In addition to the lower adverse health events, they found out that if 90 percent of mothers breast-fed for a year it would cost $860 million less in health care fees. The study showed that the low rates of breast-feeding cost society $17.4 billion from maternal deaths before 70.

Experts are trying various methods to boost breast-feeding rates. A May 2013 study in Pediatrics showed that giving babies that lost a lot of weight minimal amounts of formula actually increased long-term breast-feeding rates. Ninety-five percent of mothers whose infants were given early limited formula (ELF) were still breast-feeding at three months at some level, compared to 68 percent of mothers who did not receive ELF.



Girls Age Gets Bumped Up to Qualify for Lung Transplant


Sarah Murnaghan now has two records in the official organ transplant database: one with her real birthday and one with a birthday to make the system treat her as a 12-year-old.

The 10-year-old Pennsylvania girl is dying of cystic fibrosis and won a federal court order Wednesday to sidestep a controversial transplant rule that had been preventing her from getting new lungs.

The Murnaghan family of Newtown Square, Pa., had been fighting a little-known organ transplant policy that had been effectively pushing its daughter Sarah to the bottom of the adult transplant waiting list because it mandated that adult lungs be offered to all adult patients before they could be offered to someone younger than 12 years old.

The family filed an emergency motion on Wednesday to prevent Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius from enforcing the policy. Sebelius said Tuesday that she would not make an exception for Sarah.

But on Wednesday afternoon, Federal Judge Michael Baylson ordered Sebelius to stop enforcing the under-12 rule for Sarah “so that she can be considered for receipt of donated lungs from adults based on the medical severity of her condition as compared to the medical severity of persons over 12 in the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network system.” The order is effective immediately and will remain in effect unless the court rules otherwise at a preliminary injunction hearing on June 14.

The case prompted a second family at Sarah’s hospital – the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia – to sue to be considered equally on the adult lung waiting list, according to a complaint filed Thursday. Javier Acosta, an 11-year-old from in the Bronx who is dying of cystic fibrosis, has now been granted the same exception as Sarah, according to a statement from his lawyer at Pepper Hamilton LLP. Javier ‘s brother, Jovan, died at the age of 11 while waiting for a lung transplant, according to the complaint.

Eleven “priority 1” children under 12 years old are currently waiting for lung transplants, according to OPTN data compiled on May 24 for Nine under-12-year-olds awaiting lung transplants are categorized as “priority 2.”

This morning, Sebelius wrote a letter to the president of the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network’s president to send him the signed court order.

In the letter, Sebelius wrote that she was aware that a duplicate organ candidate record was created for Sarah at 10:34 p.m. It explains that Sarah is still a priority on the pediatric list, but she will now also be considered as a 12-year-old.

“I appreciate your immediate attention to the court’s order,” she wrote.

But the clock is still ticking for Sarah. A judge could rule to reinstate the under-12 rule on June 14 at the preliminary injunction hearing.

If she doesn’t receive lungs by then, it’s not clear whether the duplicate organ candidate record will be deleted. A spokesman for HHS said he could not speculate on what might happen.

Bioethicist Art Caplan wrote on Wednesday that politicians and bureaucrats shouldn’t decide whether Sarah gets lungs because of the medical complexities of her case.

Speaking to before the judge ruled in Sarah’s favor, he said he didn’t expect the Murnaghans to win because it would involve challenging the legitimacy of the entire organ transplant system. That is, unless lawyers could make a pure discrimination case. Otherwise, he said the effort was “doomed to fail.”

“I don’t think they have any other options to get her on the list,” Caplan told Wednesday after the emergency motion was filed but before the judge ruled in Sarah’s favor. “Do I begrudge them the right or the effort to try to do what they can? No.

June 6, 2013
read full story here:

A More Fit Family

Guide To a More Fit Family

Are you wondering what you and your family are going to this summer? The most important thing is to keep yourselves active! Try these simple suggestions to getting in better shape:

  • Take the family to an activity that requires walking. Instead of going to a movie why not try a trip to the park, zoo, botanical gardens, museum exhibits or something similar. Make sure to pack healthy snacks for the day!
  • Plan family exercise excursions: jogging and walking around the neighborhood is a great idea, especially if you have family pets that you would like to take out.
  • Sign up for activities or classes at your local YMCA, gym or summer school sports programs. Many of these places offer family oriented activities.
  • Go grocery shopping together so you can get out of the house and teach your kids the importance of foods that fuel them after exercise.


Click link to read chart of 60 Minutes a Day: Where Kids Live, Learn & Play!


For more information visit the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports


1 2 3