July 17, 2016 by Leigh St John
· Comments Off on Life Extension: The Modern Anti-Aging Movement – Are We Standing at the Threshold of Immortality?
Filed under: General
Why is skincare the focus of longevity research? I guess a cell is a cell, and if you can crack the code for one human cell, it is only a matter of time to solving the puzzle with different types of cell – and skin is without doubt the most visible cells each of us have. And it’s our faces in particular we often judge ourselves and others by, and we are in turn quickly scrutinized, and often opinions reached in a fraction of a second. Our faces often show the most visible signs of aging, and for many in modern society age is by nature “bad” and young or looking young is the ideal. That is why billions and billions of dollars each year are poured by consumers into all sorts of treatments to minimize wrinkles, to push back the effects of gravity, and to turn back the hands of time. And with that much money to be spent by consumers, there are many manufacturers eager to find the next step in arresting Father Time – and at least detaining him until the next stagecoach arrives, where hopefully he can be encouraged to move on before too much damage can be done.
The Entire Issue Explained – In A Pair of Shoelaces
Some time ago a friend gave me a simple analogy that puts this entire issue in perspective. The science may not win a Nobel Prize, but it gave me the necessary ah-ha moment.
The double helix of the DNA strand – our most basic foundation for life – is held together at each end by things that act in the same way as the hard plastic bits on the end of shoelaces do – preventing the DNA from unraveling, and the individual chromosomes scattering across the floor like dropping a string of pearls down a marble staircase. These things are called telomeres.
Somewhere programmed into these tiny telomeres is the entire basis to how long the DNA stays intact – and by inference these are the keys to the length of life of the organism. Somewhere written into the telomere is a great musical score but like all musical scores it has a double bar somewhere to signify the end; but is it to be a minuet or a Wagnerian epic? But sure enough, when the time comes, and the telomeres blow the full time whistle, the DNA strand will unravel and die – and the circle of life begins again. Telomeres govern how often our skin cells are replaced; why a puppy and a child born on the same date may age exactly the same chronologically, but the puppy has become a geriatric before the child reaches puberty.
Telomeres, my friend explained, occasionally go on the fritz (that must have a very specific scientific meaning). One of the ways this occurs is they may forget their programming to release and unravel, and they just hang on, allowing the cells thus affected to multiply again and again without dying. In fact, when this occurs often they become very difficult to kill and to all intents and purposes once the telomeres act in this way, the cell – and those it propagates – are effectively immortal.
This condition has a name which we all know. Cancer.
But, what if we were able in some way to persuade the telomeres within a cancer to behave normally – would that not be the “magic bullet” cure for cancer? And the other side to that equation – if the telomeres in healthy cells could be persuaded to act as they do in a cancer – then is this the recipe for a healthy cell that does not die? Does the cure for cancer and immortality hang on just this one thread?
Whatever your views may be, the reality is that some of the world’s finest research scientists are working on that exact question and some would say it is only a matter of a decade or two before this is neither conjecture nor science fiction, but a reality to face up to. The changes that would take place in society even if life expectancy were to take a leap forward by say 10 or 20 years are enormous, but we should all be thinking that this is a distinct possibility.
From the dab of lanoline a generation ago to what I know hold in my hand as an anti aging skincare treatment is more than just a revolution – and I have no doubt in a few years I will be saying this cream will not just slow the aging process and reduce the visible signs of aging, making your face appear younger – but it will actually be younger.
But before that, let’s look back at how this whole engagement with life extension and anti-aging started. Mankind has always striven for longevity and mused about immortality – but the past 50 years has seen some dramatic steps in reality toward this goal.
The thought of extending life has been on the mind of mankind for millennia. References to the search for ways to prolong life can be found as far back as the Epic of Gilgamesh.
Gilgamesh was reputedly the fifth king of the kingdom of Uruk, the modern-day Iraq, around 2500 BC. According to the Sumerian list of kings, he reigned for 126 years. The Torah or Old Testament records Methuselah as living over 900 years, with life spans measured in centuries apparently commonplace before the time of Noah.
Throughout the development of scientific thought from the Reformation onwards, scholars have applied themselves to solving this riddle and these endeavors continue today at the very leading edge of scientific progress.
As the secrets of our existence are unraveled in ever more minute detail, we are beginning to understand what it is that makes us grow from tiny babies into adults. We now know, for example, that cell functions slow down as the body ages and that production of certain substances required by the body to regenerate decrease or cease completely.
Skin, for instance, needs two substances to retain strength and firmness.
The production of these substances namely collagen (strength, tightness) and elastin (flexibility) decreases with age. The decreases in production together with other factors that include the threat of free radicals make the skin age and become wrinkly. Free radicals are essentially incomplete oxygen molecules causing destructive chain reactions within cells.
The same kind of thing happens in every cell, every tissue and organ around the human body. For example, people develop frown lines, crow’s feet and wrinkles. Nutrients are no longer absorbed easily and vital cell functions, hormones and other substances are produced at decreased rates resulting in the body aging.
A Brief History of the Life Extension Movement
Science has been looking for ways to slow down this process for centuries. The forming of life extension movements, however, did not really begin until around 1970.
â¢ In this year, Denham Harman, the originator of the so-called ‘free radical theory of aging’, decided that an organization dedicated to the research and information sharing between scientists working in biogerontology (the field of science concerned with the biological aspects involved in the aging process) was needed. As a result, the American Aging Association was formed.
â¢ In 1976, two futurists, Philip Gordon and Joel Kurtzman wrote a book on the research into extending the human lifespan. This popular volume was titled ‘No More Dying. The Conquest Of Aging And The Extension Of Human Life’.
â¢ Kurtzman was then invited to speak at Florida’s House Select Committee (HSC) of Aging, which was chaired by Claude Pepper, an American politician and spokesman for the elderly. The aim of this talk was to discuss the impact on Social Security by life extension.
â¢ In 1980, Saul Kent, a prominent activist in the field of life extension, published the book ‘The Life Extension Revolution’ and founded the nutraceutical (from ‘nutrition’ and ‘pharmaceutical’, in other words, a nutrition supplement) firm known as ‘The Life Extension Foundation’.
This foundation is a non-profit making organization promoting dietary supplements and publishing the periodical ‘Life Extension Magazine’. Kent was later involved in work relating to cryogenics. He was jailed in the course of this work over a dispute at one point, although charges were dropped at a later stage.
â¢ In 1982, American health writer and life extension advocate Sandy Shaw and her co-writer, Durk Pearson, popularized the term ‘life extension’ even further with the bestseller ‘Life Extension: A Practical Scientific Approach’.
â¢ Roy Walford, a gerontologist and life-extensionist, published ‘Maximum Lifespan’, another popular book on the subject. He and Richard Weindruch, his student, followed this up in 1988 with their summary on the research they had conducted into the ability to prolong the life of rodents through calorie restriction. The title of this book is ‘The Retardation of Aging and Disease by Dietary Restriction’.
Although this ability to extend life with calorie restriction had been known since the 1930’s, when gerontologist, biochemist and nutritionist Clive McCay did some research into the subject, it was the work of Walford and Weinbruch that gave solid scientific grounding to the McCay’s findings.
Walford’s scientific work was driven by a personal interest in life extension. He practiced calorie restriction as part of his own life and eventually died at the age of 80. The cause of his death was amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a progressive motor neuron disease.
â¢ A4M, the ‘American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine’ was founded in 1992 to create a medical specialty for anti aging that was distinctly separate from geriatrics. This allowed scientists and physicians interested in this particular field of science to hold conferences and discuss the latest developments.
â¢ The sci.life-extension, a Usenet group, was created by California-born author, philosopher and translator Brian M. Delaney. This represented an important development within the movement of life extension. It made it possible, for example, for the CR (Calorie Restriction) Society to be created.
â¢ A more recent development is the proposal of Dr A. de Grey, a biogerontologist at Cambridge University. This proposal suggested that damage to cells, macromolecules, organs and tissues can be repaired with the help of advanced biotechnology. This is evident in hair restoration products, for instance.
More than Books
Although it would appear that most of the work revolving around life extension has been done solely by writing books or founding societies or organizations of some kind or another, the reality is that these books were written in response to or based on very specific, detailed scientific research that have yielded positive results.
They are no longer the works of hopeful minds, but the works of dedicated scientists who have spent their lives working on discovering facts about aging and trying to find ways to slow down, or even reverse the process.
Many breakthroughs have been made, and in many ways, we are already able to extend lives to a certain extent. The average lifespan of a human being is already far greater than it used to be as a result of medical, pharmaceutical and nutritional advances brought about by research and development.
The work continues, and scientists around the world are continually conducting research, comparing results, discussing options and making advances on our behalf.
Driving Forces behind the Development of the Life Extension Movement
What factors are driving this movement into ever greater efforts to find solutions to the extension of Life? The answer to this question actually includes a whole range of factors.
Expectations Have Risen
As the ‘baby boomer’ generation (born between 1946-1964) enters retirement age, expectations of this group are dramatically different from those of the preceding generations. They have greater expectations and desires to enjoy their life as pensioners to the fullest and for as long as is possible. This expectation covers not only length of life, but quality of life as well and this is not a passive request but an active and strident demand in many cases.
Progress in pharmacology has led to a wide selection of drugs that allow people to live longer and fuller lives being developed over the last two decades or so. The work is still very much in progress and many more drugs are being developed daily.
One of the classic examples of a drug raising the quality of life for older individuals are erectile dysfunction treatments – notably Viagra, Cialis and Levitra. These drugs have dramatically reduced the number of fatalities or serious injury resulting from elderly men rolling out of bed, as well as a number of more qualitative benefits.
Advances in Genetics
Some of the latest scientific research and subsequent advances made in biotechnology and genetics are providing some hope that it may be possible to hold back some of the fundamental causes of aging.
As we outlined previously, chromosomes containing DNA strings are essentially capped with a binding substance known as telomeres. In effect, the telomeres are consumed during cell division and over time, they become shorter and shorter.
This was first observed by a scientist called Leonard Hayflick, and the process of limited cell division was subsequently named the Hayflick Limit. Advocates of life extension work on the thought that lengthening the telomeres through drugs or gene therapy may ultimately extend the Hayflick Limit and thereby fool the cells, and as such the body, into ‘thinking’ it is younger than it actually is.
Developments in Precision Manufacture
Advances made in the fields of nanotechnology, miniaturization, computer chips and robotics also provide hope for potentially life extending solutions.
In the 1970’s, a popular TV series starred Lee Majors as the ‘Six Million Dollar Man’? Science fiction then. Today, it is science fact. Millions of people now walk through life with artificial ankle, knee and hip joints and healthy feet. A generation ago, mass production of this kind of technology was a distant dream.
The same applies to many individuals with artificial limbs. Artificial legs used to be crude wooden contraptions that were just able to keep a person balanced. Today’s artificial limbs are almost fully functional.
The Blessings of Medical Progress
Who would have thought even 50 years ago that it would become possible to bypass a coronary artery, or even replace a heart completely? Yet there are hundreds of thousands, if not millions of individuals enjoying their lives after having this kind of surgery – few of whom would be alive just half a century ago.
Millions of people no longer have to wear glasses, because of the availability of laser surgery. This, too, was science fiction just a few years ago. Today, it is advertised next to shampoo in magazines and on TV.
In other words, science is moving rapidly towards not only extending life, but making the quality of these extra years better as well.
Is it Science, Science Fiction or Lunacy?
What should the average person believe? This question is almost as difficult to answer as finding solutions to extended life. Even among scientists, opinions are divided. Some do believe that extending the quality of life is as possible as extending life in general.
Others brush off the thought as un-scientific nonsense. This is often simply based on the fear of anything ‘new’ disturbing the status quo of established limits. Fortunately, real scientists do keep on looking, because if every single scientist had decided that some of the advancements already in medical, pharmaceutical and technological fields could not be possible, we would all still be dying at 30.
So where does that leave us?
There is no doubt what-so-ever that there are many charlatans out there trying to make a quick buck out of people’s desire to retain their youth. Even today, many products being sold in their millions are essentially non-effective – often given fantastic names and have the most bewildering ingredients to make them look scientific to consumers and justify their cost.
But the facts are while many advancements are being made and research points to the possibility of eventually finding the key to maintaining youth for longer, the scientific community is still warning the public that many of the products being sold today are unreliable to say the least.
â¢ Although food supplements may assist in keeping a body healthier – something that can often be achieved by simply adopting a healthier life style and diet – there is as yet no categorical and undeniable proof that they slow down aging as such.
â¢ The same goes for many hormone treatments. Although they may have a short term effect of some kind, it is not yet scientifically proven that they will actually work in the long run. The fear that it may not work is based on the fact that taking hormones, a good example is the hormonal acne treatment, will ultimately actually slow down the body’s own production of these hormones.
In addition, many treatments may have potential (and yet unknown) side effects in the long run that could be harmful to the user’s health. This includes the fears that such hormone treatments could increase the risk of cancer, diabetes and other major illnesses.
â¢ Other ideas, like the calorie restriction method, are working for rodents. In fact, studies conducted with rats on 30 to 50 per cent restricted diets have shown to almost double the life span of rats.
Similar studies conducted on primates have also shown tendency to extend life to a certain extent and prevent a list of age related illnesses. There are as yet no studies on humans, although some are actually living on calorie restricted diets. Whether this will prolong their lives, however, is a question of having to wait and see.
The theory is that by reducing calorie intake, the metabolism of the body is slowed down, thereby slowing the aging process as well. Nutritionists say there is a certain amount of calories a body of a certain size and weight needs to have to maintain health. Reducing this amount by up to 50 per cent is hardly a good idea in the long term.
Time will tell, as they say, but how will anyone be able to tell the difference? If a person lives to the age of 80, is this because they are on this diet or would they have lived to this age anyway?
Where Will This Lead?
Many believe there is realistic hope and expectation of making significant strides in the area of longevity within the next two decades. This group typically believes the answer will ultimately lie within genetics and biotechnology. It is too early to make definite predictions, but the research so far shows promise and, as mentioned earlier, some of the results of this research are already being used in certain treatments to improve patients’ lives.
At present, overall aging is difficult to slow down, to say the least. Some products indicate they will assist in maintaining overall health/longevity, but the area we are seeing the first commercial products being developed is in the area of skin care and given the size of this market, it is likely that this will continue to be the weather-vane of longevity treatments.
Science or Snake Oil?
It will be difficult to tell these two apart for many years. Charlatans are likely to about, because it is difficult to disprove many theories easily. Equally difficult will be positive proof from those with an ethical perspective on the trail of a real breakthrough, as products based on valid research and using technology or ingredients that will actually have an effect rarely promise overnight results. This is something that anyone looking to find improved youthful looks, etc, will have to bear in mind. None of these products can perform miracles. Even the best of them will take time and regular use in order to achieve the desired effect.
The bottom line is that where we stand now, we can be sure there are some things which are ineffective or even harmful; there are some that show some promise and there are some that are starting to cross the line of being able to demonstrate results – albeit modestly at this point.
In the meantime, it is wise to research products very carefully and to refuse to be baffled by weird and wonderful sounding ingredients or fantastic sounding promises of instant youth. Regeneration will take time – let’s face it, it has taken a lifetime to get to this point, turning back the clock can never be possible over night.
Skin Care and the Life Extension Movement
One may well ask just what all this, and in particular the life extension movement as such, could possibly have to do with skin care, health and beauty products. The fact is, much of the research into life extension is resulting in new approaches to skin care as a kind of by-product.
A greater understanding of how genetics and cellular processes affect the aging and condition of skin allows these research and development teams to investigate different compounds, their compatibility with human cells and genetic make up.
Many compounds found in nature are not just compatible to human skin but in fact the skin cells actually have natural receptors for these compounds. Because life extension research has discovered these receptors, skin care developers can now use this knowledge and create the formulae for their products to provide maximum effect.
Another skin care ‘by-product’ of life extension research is the use of nanotechnology. The use of nanotechnology, or, to be more precise, nanoparticles, has had a huge impact on the way nutrients and other components of skin care products are being delivered to the skin cells. In some ways, nanotechnology has already revolutionized skin care. It is now possible to use active ingredients previously difficult to effectively deliver to the skin, as well as making old, proven ingredients even more effective. Some ingredients used in cosmetics for hundreds, if not thousands of years by certain cultures can now be even more effectively used to improve skin condition and maintain a healthy, youthful look.
Even the moisturizing effect of skin care products can be improved with nantechnology. For this effect, so-called nanosomes are used. Nanosomes are small, pocket-like particles that melt or disintegrate on skin contact. By doing this, the moisturising effect is accelerated, assisting the skin faster and more efficiently.
Nanotechnology plays a key part not only in slowing the aging of skin, but is believed to actively assist in repairing and healing skin cells and tissue.
Another breakthrough in life extension research that is beginning to make itself felt in skin care products is the research into stem cells. Stem cells are elements of all life, plant, animal and human. Stem cells have two properties other cells do not have. These properties are the ability to develop into any kind of cell type and the ability to divide almost indefinitely. The use of plant stem cell extracts in skin care is likely to become one of the next ‘big things’ in the industry. And prepare for the debate when human stem cells are proposed as part of an anti-aging skincare regime, as will inevitably occur!
One thing we can be certain of, is that science will continue to search for answers to the question of life extension, and business will drive the commercialization of discoveries. But whether these lead us to a utopian future or potentially a minefield of strife as we debate who will use and who will benefit from these new godlike powers. In the meantime, at a practical level in the skincare, health and beauty industry we remain hopeful and expectant we will see the emergence of products that not only promise results, but produce them.
David Christensen is a veteran of Asia Pacific business, currently residing in Bangkok, Thailand and heading up the business he was a co-founder of, Royal Siam Natural Health & Beauty – who can be located at [http://www.royalsiam.asia], and the information supporting site at [http://www.royalsiam.info]. Royal Siam was established after careful planning in early 2011, spending 2011 concentrating on building the necessary business infrastructure and concentrating on the domestic Thai market. Early in 2012 Royal Siam launched its international website and online store, and in April 2012 publicly declared the ambition to be among the world’s top 20 premium health and beauty brands by the year 2020. Royal Siam is a unique business, operating in the premium skincare, anti aging, and related fields. At its core, one mission is to commercialize and bring to a global market the immense wealth of knowledge about the healing and beneficial properties of Thai and South East Asian plants – a knowledge base carefully built up over the last thousand years. At the same time, the mission is to bring to market the very latest in scientific advances in the area of anti aging… resulting in the unique position of having a Thai heritage and offering the best of nature, tradition, and science.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/David_D_Christensen/1317312
June 26, 2016 by Leigh St John
· Comments Off on How to Choose the Best Anti Aging Cream?
Filed under: General
As we become old, the skin renews itself much more slowly than when you are young because the production of collagen, natural proteins that provide the firmness of the skin begin to fall, causing dehydration of the skin and wrinkles.
When you reach 30/40 years, a regular moisturizer will not be enough for your skin, you should start using anti-wrinkle cream (anti-aging) to slow the signs of aging.
Fortunately, there are now a range of anti-aging products designed for every skin type, for all ages and for different needs.
There are wrinkle creams, serums, masks, creams around the eyes, neck, hands, face, etc..
The advantages of using anti-aging creams
– Gives a brightness and youthful glow to the skin
– Eliminate and reduce wrinkles
– Strengthen and firm the skin
– Reduces the appearance of fine lines
– Check and neutralize free radicals
– Moisturize and nourish the skin
– Rejuvenate and firm the skin
– Stimulates the production of collagen and elastin
– Harmonize the pigmentation of the skin
– Stimulates cellular activity and firm the skin
– Prevent the appearance of new wrinkles
– Helps rebuild the skin texture
– Redefine the skin of the cheeks and neck
– Helps repair signs of loosening around the neck and chin
– Renouvelent the elasticity of the skin by stimulating its natural healing processes
– Satisfies wrinkles
How do anti-aging creams?
Most anti-aging products contain retinol, collagen, alpha hydroxy acid, minerals and vitamins. These elements are known for their power to stop the signs of aging and reduce wrinkles and fine lines.
Once the anti-aging cream is applied to the skin, the components therein inhibit muscle movement and to reduce wrinkles and prevent their further training.
Substances penetrate the outer layer of the skin and repair. They also stimulate the production of collagen and elastin in the skin.
Other wrinkle operate by separating the upper layer of the skin, allowing healthy new cells of the skin to appear (that are generally products containing alpha-hydroxy acids).
You should know that all anti-aging products can remove wrinkles or fine lines after the first few days of use.These products gradually smooth your skin and the results are usually seen after a month or two.
How to choose the best anti-aging cream for the face to you?
Today, anti-aging creams are specially designed for specific skin problems: some creams treat crow’s feet, dark circles around the eyes and fine lines around the mouth, others are designed to revitalize the skin, reducing the depth of wrinkles and firm the neck.
There are even anti-aging creams for the hands, neck and neckline.
There are anti-wrinkle products for each skin type: for those who are fat, dry or sensitive.
One of the most important rules when choosing the best anti-aging product for your skin is to look at the components of the product.
It is essential to choose an anti-aging cream that suits your skin type and needs.
If your skin has a lot of wrinkles around the eyes, you should consider buying an anti-aging cream for the eyes that treats crow’s feet and dark circles around the eyes.
During the selection of anti-aging cream make sure it is not too hard or very greasy as it can clog pores and cause a problem if it is left on overnight.
It is essential to choose a product that offers good sun protection (SPF of at least 15 or more) to protect your skin from harmful sun rays that cause premature aging of the skin.
Today, most anti-aging creams available and contain antioxidants that neutralize free radicals associated with excessive exposure to the sun can cause serious skin problems.
Common components of anti-aging creams
Retinol (vitamin A)
Vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant that neutralizes free radicals that cause premature aging usually (Free radicals break down skin cells and collagen in the skin).
Retinol is also known as vitamin A, retinoic acid and retinoid.
Vitamin A is probably the most component used in anti-aging creams, serums and toners. It reduces wrinkles, fine lines and discoloration of the skin and stimulates collagen production. Vitamin A is also known for its ability to tighten pores and minimize sun damage.
Retinol is widely used to treat severe acne and rosacea.
The Kénitine a natural component that helps the skin retain natural moisture and stimulates collagen production.
It is a powerful antioxidant that can also fight against uneven pigmentation. It restores the function of the natural moisture of the skin, helps to preserve and soften the skin without side effects and provides protection for the skin against free radical damage.
Α-hydroxy acids (AHA or)
AHAs are widely used in the cosmetic industry because they remove the top layer of dead skin cells and stimulate the growth of healthy new cells.
Α-hydroxy acids work come exfoliating agents, they have a cooling effect on the skin and improve its overall appearance.
Α-hydroxy acids generally used include: glycolic acid, lactic acid and salicylic acid.
Α-hydroxy acids act as deep into the dermis and stimulate the production of collagen and elastin fibers which are essential for healthy skin.
You should know that all types of α-hydroxy acids increase susceptibility to the harmful effects of the sun and it is essential to use sunscreen daily to avoid sun damage.
Α-hydroxy acids are present in a variety of products including skin care moisturizers, cleansers, eye cream, sunscreen, and foundation.
Coenzyme Q10 is a fat-soluble vitamin-like substance found in every human cell and that neutralizes free radicals (acts as an antioxidant) and reduces fine lines and wrinkles. It prevents sun damage and skin discolorations.
Coenzyme Q10 is commonly used in anti-wrinkle creams and serums because it prevents damage to collagen and elastin production process and help prevent fine lines and wrinkles.
Copper peptides are widely used in anti-aging creams, because they stimulate the production of collagen.Copper peptides also enhance the action of antioxidants and enhance wound healing.
Copper peptides are effective against various forms of skin irritation, mainly because of their anti-inflammatory effects. Copper peptides also stimulate the formation of elastin and reduce sagging and wrinkles.
Vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant that helps reduce the appearance and depth of wrinkles. It stimulates cellular renewal of the skin.
There are different forms of vitamin A: retinol, retinyl palmitate and retinyl linoleate. Lack of vitamin A can cause dryness and hardening of the skin.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant with a brightening effect of the skin.
It is a common component in products skin care as well as makeup products because it gives the skin a youthful and stimulates blood circulation.
Vitamin C also keeps the skin elastic and prevents premature aging of the latter.
When combined with vitamin E reduces the signs of aging: wrinkles, fine lines, brown spots and age spots.
Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid.
Vitamin E provides natural protection against harmful UV rays.
Vitamin E creates a moisture barrier and prevents the discoloration of the skin. It helps the skin to repair itself.
The most common are vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin E. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals and prevent premature aging of the skin.
Many beauty products: the facial cleansers, moisturizing lotions, tonics, claim to contain antioxidants.
Antioxidants are added to cosmetic products containing fat such as lipstick and moisturizers to prevent rancidity.
Tea extracts (green tea, black tea, white) are usually found in anti-aging creams, serums, masks and lotions.
The tea extracts act as antioxidants in the fight against free radicals. They have anti-inflammatory properties and help in repairing skin damage.
Retinoids are chemical compounds that are chemically related to vitamin A. They make the skin thinner and smoother and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Retinoids are widely used in the treatment of many diseases and are effective in treating a number of skin conditions such as inflammatory disorders of the skin, cancer, skin disorders in cell renewal and aging.
Retinoids reduce wrinkles, freckles, blackheads (whiteheads and blackheads), and stains caused by sunlight.
Topical retinoids are also effective treatments for mild acne and severe.
It takes about 3 months for the skin acclimates to a retinoid.
Hyaluronic acid is a component of connective tissue whose function is to cushion and lubricate the skin.
It is found naturally in the skin, its function is to hold water.
Useful tips related to the use of anti-aging creams
– Apply your anti-aging cream with upward strokes from the throat to the front.
– Do not forget: you may need to use an anti-wrinkle for several weeks before you notice improvement.
– Ask for samples before buying a face cream to see if it works for you.
– Try to use a facial cleanser with glycolic acid.
– Exfoliate your skin regularly (at least twice per week) with a gentle exfoliant to remove dead skin cells and accelerate cell renewal.
– Always use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 to protect your skin against the sun’s harmful rays that cause premature aging of the skin and causes discoloration.
– Consult a dermatologist or esthetician to give you the product that best suits you.
– It is essential to get a good amount of sleep each night.
– Try to use a wrinkle cream that contains more natural ingredients, vitamins, essential oils, aloe vera and natural emollients.
– You can put on your sunscreen cream.
– Choose makeup: foundation, concealers, lipsticks, lip glosses that offer sun protection.
– It is essential to follow a strict regimen of skin care every day to keep your skin clear and healthy.
– Always remove your makeup at night with a mild cleanser that suits your skin type.
– Use masks or face firming moisturizer twice to keep your skin radiant mature.
– Drink plenty of mineral water at least 1.5 liters a day to keep your body and skin hydrated.
– Perhaps now is the perfect time to quit smoking: Smoking seriously harms health and damages the skin by destroying collagen and elastin.
– Compare different wrinkle creams and find out what works best for you.
For more information about wrinkles and anti-aging creams visit my blog Best Cream for Wrinkles.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/7259744
May 29, 2016 by Leigh St John
· Comments Off on How Old Are You Really? Biological Age
Filed under: General
People have always been interested in being “forever young” and today’s society is no different. We want to resist the ageing process.
The speed at which we are ageing can be measured – its called biological age, or how old your body really is.
The area of study which is now called longevity, and was once called anti aging, is hugely popular in the states.
It’s something I’m very interested in, and see it as a big part of the future for myself and my clients.
Your chronological age is how old you actually are.
Biological age is the age of your body at the cellular level.
Today we will look into how you can establish, what your biological age is and how you can improve it.
There are a few longevity factors in the list which surprised me!
(Deep question alert!)
What is the purpose of life? I don’t mean any deep seated stuff, like procreation.
I just mean, what is most people’s AIM in life. What do they want to get out of their time on earth?
Firstly and most importantly, people want to be happy. Easier said than done.
Happiness is a state of mind. It’s a feeling.
Ask someone with a big goal (like building a successful business or losing more than three stone).
“What will reaching your goal do for you?”
Often they will say something like “When I get there I will feel happy”, or “satisfied with myself”, or they say “I will feel proud”.
“I will have more energy”.
“I won’t be afraid of trying new clothes on or going out with friends”.
“I don’t want to feel like a slave to food”
“I don’t want to be scared to look in the mirror or get on the scales”.
Life is all about feelings.
People spend their entire lives in search of feelings! (mostly happiness, contentment, satisfaction and love)
How people actually reach this state of “happiness” is different for us all.
Most people I know AIM for a decent job (or business) with decent money.
All with the ultimate goal of having a good retirement.
I hear people say “When I finish work, I’m going to do this or I’m going to… (insert goal)”.
The point here being, if being happy and having a nice retirement is people’s main goal in life, then keeping your body fit and healthy surely must be part of your plan.
I know of a very wealthy man who got cancer and passed away just before his retirement, I’m sure that was not part of the master plan, he had built his business up so he could sell it and have a nice retirement (as most business people do).
He didn’t make it and didn’t get to “cash out”.
Many people don’t make it to retirement because their “plan” is messed up from the start.
Without sounding depressing we only get one shot remember.
This is NOT a rehearsal.
A lot of people get to retirement age and their body is wrecked!
This stops them from being able to enjoy their time off as much. Living life with lots of restrictions. “I can’t go there because of the steep hill”, or “I can’t do that because of my back or my knees”.
After working hard for 40-50 years – to give yourself a good pension and retirement, this is the last thing that anyone wants.
Peoples bodies are like cars.
On one hand you have new cars with high mileage that are not well serviced.
On the other hand you have old cars with low mileage that have been well looked after.
I want YOU to be like a well looked after old car, with low mileage when you get to your retirement.
I know some people, that slog away and get to the age of 40, and feel and look like they’re 50 or 60!
I also know many people who hit retirement age and feel like a 40 year old, and can keep on working and exercising for another 20 years!
This is all dependent on how we live our lives, obviously there are things such as injuries, diseases and other bad things which can impact our lives negatively through no fault of our own but on the whole we are in control of our own health.
What affects our longevity?
Scientists agree that these factors all affect your longevity in some way, big or small. (this is not a definitive list)
Muscle size and strength
Level of education
How pro active you are with going to see the doctor if needed
The amount of friends you can rely on, and love in your life
Your upper body strength
If you enjoy your work or not
Weather you smoke/drink alcohol or not, and the amount
If you exercise or not
Most of us shorten our lives and ultimately kill ourselves, through our bad habits and lifestyle choices, whatever they may be.
As you would of guessed, it is possible to slow down the onset of ageing and even reverse it to some extent.
I must say, that there is nothing wrong with ageing, it is inevitable. It is something we should be proud of, a chance to show our wisdom to the younger generation.
This article is just to show you how you can SLOW the ageing process with ease and actually enjoy it.
The Ageing Process
As we get older our bodies start to slow down and stop being able to function as well, sadly there is no getting away from this.
BUT through healthy living and making the right choices day in day out we can delay our body slowing down by years!
Just think how much more you will be able to enjoy your retirement if you feel like a 40 year old? and can spend it with the people you love.
Compare this to how much you will enjoy it if you can barely walk up a flight of stairs without having tired legs and being short of breath.
Your chronological age doesn’t have to be the same, or worse, than your physiological age.
How to slow the effects of ageing
The list above obviously helps you but here are a few more ideas for you to beat the clock.
When some people think anti aging, I’m sure some of you may think of things like anti wrinkle creams and lotions, hair dying products, botox and maybe even plastic surgery.
That does kind of sum up some of the western world that these are the steps that the majority of people (plastic surgery being an extreme example) will take to make them look younger, rather than eating healthily and exercising.
Aging leads to loss of muscle mass, loss of mental function, low mobility and a lack of energy, and as you know the cosmetic type anti aging steps I mentioned won’t help any of these.
Top tips to delay ageing naturally:
Enjoy the Outdoors – Don’t spend all of your time cooped up indoors behind the computer or watching TV. There are plenty of things to do and see outside, especially on a nice day I can’t think of anything better than going for a walk with the family down the park or beach. Sunlight also is a natural source of Vitamin D.
Yoga & Meditation – I would say that this is one of the most important strategies in staying young. I started to do this myself and it honestly makes me feel great. Yoga and meditation can help you relax and lower your stress levels (linked with aging) dramatically. It can also help you to see things a lot clearer.
Yoga is also great for your flexibility, the more flexible and supple you are the less chance you have in the future of suffering falls and lack of mobility.
Socialise – Loneliness can be a real killer. Socialise as much as possible with your friends and family. Get out there and do things, go to the cinema, concerts, attend an evening class (the more mentally stimulating the better).
Stay Strong & Active – You have to keep moving or your body will come to a standstill. Taking part in regular exercise is absolutely vital. Regular strength training is extremely important.
Losing muscle mass is something you want to avoid or at least delay for as long as possible so strength training will help this as well as keeping your bones strong, this will lower your chances of osteoporosis.
I believe food is medicine, many of the effects you get from modern day medicine you can get from eating the right foods.
Nutrition influences biochemistry. Biochemistry influences everything at a cellular level.
If you eat well there should be no need for some medications.
If you spend your whole life eating fresh, natural whole foods and stay active then it will also show. You will most likely be lean, mobile, disease free and full of energy, a rarity these days.
You should aim to eat a diet containing lots of quality fats and protein’s (the bodies building materials) which will help you to maintain your muscle stores. Also protein boosts the production of HGH in your body, HGH (Human growth Hormone) is your body’s natural ‘fountain of youth’.
As you age the production of this hormone slows down greatly, regular strength exercise (lifting, pushing and pulling heavy stuff) and quality protein keeps the production of this hormone going!
Eat plenty of antioxidant rich foods – Antioxidants which are found in colourful fruit and vegetables help to reduce the damage caused by free radicals in your system.
Free radicals can speed up the onset of ageing; they are unstable electrons (O1 molecules)which are produced during metabolism. They damage the cell nucleus and the mitochondria.
Free radicals bounce around inside your cells like a pin ball, causing damage every time they hit something. They cause absolute havoc.
Antioxidants provide the free radical with the extra O1 molecule they need to become stable O2 molecules.
Good quality natural foods are the best way to combat these harmful free radicals. Natural organic foods are packed with antioxidants which neutralise the free radicals before they cause too much damage.
Eat Omega 3s – They fight inflammation, improve the appearance of your skin and aid brain function. Three vital things that we need as we age. So make sure you get as many omega 3s into your system as you can, the best source is fresh fish, if not a fish oil supplement will do.
Lower Sugar Intake – Aim to cut out any excess sugar that you eat, excess sugars can modify essential proteins in our body which can lead to wrinkles and energy loss.
Look after your skin through good food and lots of water – Eating foods containing vitamin A (sweet potatoes, broccoli, spinach, asparagus and carrots), Vitamin C (red peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, strawberries, oranges, kiwi and pineapple) and Vitamin E (nuts, seeds and spinach) are a great way of helping your skin look healthy.
Stop smoking and limit alcohol intake – There are few things that age you faster than smoking and drinking alcohol every day so cut out smoking and do as much as you can to drink less.
Lower Stress Levels – This is another big one, I just mentioned that there are few things that age you faster than smoking and alcohol; well I think stress is one of them.
Being constantly stressed will ruin your mood, energy levels, social interaction as well as causing so many health problems.
As I mentioned above, I have found deep breathing techniques, yoga and meditation really important and a great way of combating stress.
Let’s be realistic the big medical and health companies aren’t going to promote anti aging through the things I just said, they are going to promote it through new miracle pills, lotions and creams, there is a lot of money to be made from it so they will keep on doing it.
The people who buy these products don’t have to alter their lifestyle one little bit so it suits them which is why it is so popular.
We ultimately reap our rewards in our retirement, if you have invested some time and effort into your “health & fitness account”, you will reap the rewards.
If you haven’t then you won’t!
You can actually measure your biological age online with a biological age calculator.
If all of the things I have mentioned above didn’t require effort or commitment then everyone would be running around into their 90s and later!!
But unfortunately we don’t, we die much younger than that.
Depending on what stats you use, in 2010, UK men were reported to live on average until about 77 or 78, and women on average live until 82 or 83 years old.
Do it naturally and do it right.
Let me know your thoughts on this topic, comment below, I really want to know what you think.
Thanks for reading, take care,
If you would like to receive weekly health and fitness updates on the top news in the industry along with several free gifts then follow this link: http://richard-clarke.co.uk/
Just enter your email address in the box on the right to receive a free 3 Day Detox Plan, an Easy Weight Loss Diet Sheet plus some free, easy to do, exercise routines.
There are also many easy to read helpful articles and information which can inspire you to reach your fitness and exercise goals FASTER!
Thanks for reading.
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Live Healthy – Look Marvelous – Live Longer
There are actions you can, and should take today to dramatically improve your health, your appearance and your longevity. You can control 70% of the factors affecting your longevity; only 30% are controlled by genetics until very late in life when genetics become more controlling
Almost all of the effects of aging and the common diseases that come with aging are treatable, to at least some extent. The key is early detection and early treatment.
Our understanding of the aging process is advancing rapidly. Some scientists believe that the first immortal human may be living today.
In 1786, life expectancy was 24 years. Better diets and some medical innovations allowed it to double to 48 years in the next 100 years.
Modern medicine has now increased life expectancy to over 76 years. Future medicine promises to increase it to over 100 years during our lifetime.
“Over half the baby boomers here in America are going to see their hundredth birthday and beyond in excellent health.” says Dr. Ronald Klatz of the American Academy of Anti-Aging. “We’re looking at life spans for the baby boomers and the generation after the baby boomers of 120 to 150 years of age.”
The key to Live Healthy – Look Marvelous – Live Longer is to delay the diseases of aging so that when they do occur, it is very late in your life.
The causes of aging are finally being understood. There are actions you can take today to take advantage of the recent medical developments. Dr. Rudman ran a series of tests on aging people and demonstrated that the effects of aging could be slowed and even reversed. He concluded: “The overall deterioration of the body that comes with growing old is not inevitable.”
The Causes of Aging
Almost all life on earth blossoms with youth, until it has reproduced and passed its genes on to the next generation. After that, the flowers wilt and die, and we humans began to age. Yes, we begin to age while we are still in our 20’s.
We age because the products of our metabolism, I.e., the “ashes” from the oxidation processes that produce energy in our cells, accumulate faster then our endocrine system can remove them. This is because most of the cleansing hormones that surged through our youthful bodies begin to decrease as we begin to age. Some of these more critical hormones have decreased by about 10 to 30% as we enter our 30’s. The decreases become ever more dramatic as we enter successive decades of life. Most of our hormones have decreased by over 50% and some have been reduced to near zero as we enter our 70’s. So we age. Our muscles and bones weaken; our reaction time slows; we lose our agility; all combine to make us more susceptible to accidents. Our immune system weakens and makes us more susceptible to disease. And we die.
The Death Clock
Dr. Hayflick has shown that we have another cause of aging. He has shown that we have a built-in death date of about 120 years, if diseases or accidents do not get us earlier. The point at which our cells have divided a fixed number of times sets this death date. It has been termed the “Hayflick limit.”
Our cells divide to produce new cells to replace the old cells damaged by metabolic ash build-up, free radicals, toxins, and other wear and tear mechanisms. As the cells divide, the chromosomes split to provide chromosomes for the new cells. When the chromosomes split, they lose part of their telomeres – the genes at their ends that keep the chromosomes organized. After a certain number of splits, the telomeres wear away and become too short to keep the chromosome organized and therefore the cell dies without being able to replace itself.
You can think of telomeres as analogous to the plastic bands on the ends of shoelaces. Telomeres hold the important DNA code intact, preventing it from fraying as the molecules replicate over time.
Resetting the Death Clock
But tests over the past few years have shown that the “Hayflick limit” can be extended by the use of an enzyme that causes the “organizing genes” at the ends of the chromosomes (the telomeres) to re-grow. This enzyme is called telomerase.
Telomerase treatments on human cells in the laboratory have indicated that telomerase can make human cells immortal. Doctors and researchers involved in these treatments are reporting that it is their belief that death is not inevitable.
Telomerase is actually an enzyme (a catalytic protein) that is able to arrest or reverse the telomere shortening process. The body produces telomerase when we are embryos in the womb to accommodate the very rapid growth of the embryo. But, unfortunately our bodies do not produce telomerase after birth except possibly for the creation of sperm.
So for humans to extend life we must do two things: first, eliminate the oxidants and toxins in our foods and environment; and find a dietary or pharmaceutical method for increasing and preserving the length of our cells’ telomeres.
Promising Anti-Aging Research
There are many ongoing projects that promise to solve our problems of aging. One is from a team of South Korean scientists. They report that they have created a newly-synthesized molecule, named CGK733 that can make cells younger.
“All cells face an inevitable death as they age. On this path, cells became lethargic and in the end stop dividing but we witnessed that CGK733 can block the process,” Prof. Kim Tae-kook reported. He further stated: “We also found the synthetic compound can reverse aging, by revitalizing already-lethargic cells. Theoretically, this can give youth to the elderly via rejuvenating cells.”
Kim expects that the CGK733-empowered drugs that keep cells youthful far beyond their normal life span would be commercialized in less than 10 years.
Researchers at The Wistar Institute have defined a key target of an evolutionarily conserved protein that regulates the process of aging. The study provides fundamental knowledge about key mechanisms of aging that could point toward new anti-aging strategies and cancer therapies.
Aging saps our strength and ability to enjoy life, cripples us, and eventually kills us. Tens of millions die from age-related conditions each and every year. Comparatively few people know that degenerative aging can be slowed with diet and lifestyle choices, medicines and nutracuetials.
Comparatively few people are aware of the many serious scientific efforts, presently underway, aimed at understanding and intervening in the aging process – in order to one day reverse its effects.
Your objective should be to have a healthy life and continue to live long enough to take advantage of all the medical advances and technologies now in development.
Our health is determined by our genetics, our diets, and our past and current lifestyles. You can now optimize your current and future health by defining and taking medications, vitamins, and other supplements and treatments tailored to your specific health needs. The program to do this recognizes the validity of three basic themes:
- The Future of Medicine is in Personal Tailoring
- Preventative Medicine is Key
- Aging is a Treatable Disease.
Your Anti-Aging Longevity Plan
It is strongly recommended that you get familiar with the latest anti-aging information and develop your personal Longevity Plan. The key to longer life is to detect any health issues as early as possible and take advantage of the available technology to address them. Time really is of the essence.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/5073181
May 1, 2016 by Leigh St John
· Comments Off on Part Four: Current and Future Anti-Aging Treatments
Filed under: General
As previously noted, many anti-oxidants are essential nutrients. Natural anti-oxidants, like vitamin C and E, work synergistically. Anti-oxidants may be more effective if obtained from a diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Nutritionists recommend eating 6 or more daily servings of anti-oxidant rich fruits and vegetables. Everyone agrees the use of antioxidant supplements for anti-aging may be helpful, but there is no agreement on what the most effective supplement dosages should be.
Anti-aging medicine acknowledges that stress of all kinds causes aging but has not yet developed individualized treatment for this. There are countless sources of internal and external stress and individual stress levels vary greatly. One overlooked cause of internal stress is improper hydration. Water is essential in for the correct operation of many internal functions. Too little or too much water causes age producing stress. When one is old (80+) thirst perception declines and dehydration can easily set in. Other overlooked sources of stress are antioxidants themselves. High doses (or doses above certain yet unspecified amounts) of supplemental anti-oxidants are a known cause of stress.
To be helpful, antioxidant supplements must prevent other types of stress more than the stress they themselves create. Knowing the correct supplement dosages that can do this is an essential part of anti-aging treatment. A healthy young person in his twenties, who is properly nourished, will have less internal stress that an older individual in his sixties. For a young individual, lower amounts of antioxidants may be safer than higher amounts. A older person, whose many internal homeostatic mechanisms are less able to deal with internal stress, may benefit more from higher amounts of antioxidants. Theoretically an anti-oxidant based course of anti-ageing treatment will slow the rate at which cellular damage occurs. Cells will become “sick” more slowly. Over time, as fewer sick cells are replaced at a slower rate, the number of cells retaining longer telomere chains will be higher. You can then reasonably expect this to result in an increase in life expectancy. For now the recommended but imprecise approach to decrease the rate at which cellular damage occurs is to increase your per day intake of anti-oxidant rich fruits and vegetables, to slightly increase your intake of antioxidants, and to take various vitamins and small amounts of anti-aging supplements on a daily basis. One study has shown taking a good multivitamin supplement is associated with longer telomere length.
Ideally anti-aging treatment should to be fine tuned for each individual. The key here would be to measure and minimize the cumulative effects of different kinds of stress on an individual basis. Easily measurable practical bio-markers for various types of stress do not yet exist or are not being used. When they are used it will be easy to customize individual antioxidant dosages so that everyone have “optimum” levels throughout their life. “Optimum” levels would maintain a safe reserve of protective antioxidants in the body.
Next I will briefly discuss the most popular nutrients associated with anti-aging. The most popular of the anti-oxidants, vitamins, and nutrients often associated with good health and anti-aging include: beta-carotene (vitamin A), vitamin C, vitamin E, various Flavonoids,Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, Co-enzyme Q10, Lycopene, Selenium.
There are dozens of supplements that are known to effectively treat specific symptoms of old age. A few of the better known supplements include: DMAE, Acetyl-l-carnitine, L-carnosine, Alpha Lipoic Acid, DHEA, L-arginine, and melatonin
Good food contains some of the anti-oxidants previously mentioned. A few other popular foods associated with anti-aging include: Green Tea, turmeric, and red wine.
All of the above have unique biological properties and, in my opinion, are “good” for you if taken in small or moderate amounts. Some (ex. vitamin C) may also be “good” for you in larger amounts. Various studies on each of these may conflict with each other. You need to carefully research each substance on your own but researchers have already found several nutrients to be associated with longer than average telomere lengths. These include: Green Tea, Omega-3, Vitamins A, C, D, and E.
Vitamin E has been associated with telomere lengthening anti-aging properties.
Green tea contains many antioxidants, including vitamin C, E and flavenoids.Flavenoids form a large antioxidant class (including catechins and quercetin) that has many anticarcinogenic, antihypercholesterolemic, antibacterial, (helps prevent dental caries), and anti-inflammatory properties. The leaves of the tea plant are rich in polyphenols. The consumption of 3 cups or more of green tea daily has been associated with longer than average telomere length.
The Omega-3s are essential long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids that are anti-inflammatory and help prevent heart disease, stroke, memory loss, depression, arthritis, cataract, cancer. Omega-3s slow down the shortening of telomeres; i.e. they may protect against aging on a cellular level.
Vitamin C is an abundant internal water soluble antioxidant that protects cellular components against free-radical formation caused by pollution and cigarette smoke. Many studies have associated high vitamin C intakes with lower rates of cancer of the mouth, larynx and esophagus. Vitamin C has shown promise in treating premature aging and possibly aging itself.
Due to limitations on the number of links I can incorporate into this article I could not provide more reference links supporting the preceding paragraphs. If interested please email me at the email address shown at the end of this article and I will forward them to you.
The sooner you start some sort of anti-aging treatment the better but it is never too late to start. All real treatments will help you maintain a longer than average average telomere chain length.
The goal of the programmed death theory of aging is to address the root causes of aging. This goal includes attempts to slow or reverse the telomere shortening process. Two such treatments are: TA 65 and human genetic engineering.
TA 65 is a telomerase activating product produced and marketed by Sierra Sciences. The key ingredient in TA 65 is Astragalus, a plant extract known to have telomerase activation properties. The product may work but I do not recommend it for several reasons. TA 65 is too expensive for the average person. A number of expensive health spas incorporate TA 65 in their programs. Again these are financially beyond the reach of the average person. The marketing tactics of Sierra Sciences have been questioned by many and there are law suits pending against TA 65.
The big issue I have with TA 65 is one of scientific honesty. The company genetically engineered mice that allowed telomerase to be switched off and on at an early age. TA 65 was able to switch telomerase back on in these mice and allowed them to live normal lives. http://www.nature.com/news/2010/101128/full/news.2010.635.html
Using this to show how effective TA65 treatment is, is dishonest. This is not how telomerase normally works and there was no real extension of the lifespan beyond what it would have been without the genetic modification. In normal mice the effects of TA65 were temporary and little or no life extension was seen. http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/04/11/anti-aging-pill-new-study-on-ta-65-sparks-controversy.html
Human genetic engineering is the real answer to fighting and defeating aging. It can directly address the root causes of aging. Advances in this area (ex. CRISPR) allow DNA base pairs to be inserted or deleted at specific place in our DNA. This means the human genome can now be precisely edited as needed. The lifespan of old mice has been modestly increased using telomerase gene therapy. In humans gene modification therapy has frequently been used for various medical problems. On September 15, 2015, Elizabeth Parrish was the first human to undergo anti-aging gene therapy. Anti-aging treatments will rapidly advance as our knowledge of the specifics of the human genome grows.
Current general social-political attitudes seem to be favoring the further development of anti-aging research. There are no international recognized political programs to stop aging or extend life but since 2012 a few pro-immortality political parties have sprung up. Their aim is to support anti-aging and life extension research, and to help provide access to advances in these areas to everyone. Among the numerous organizations supporting anti-aging research, the SENS (Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence) organization has come up with an anti-aging research plan. They want to develop anti-aging therapies to repair most forms of cellular damage. SENS, is a charitable organization. Any anti-aging advances resulting from funding it provides will become readily available public knowledge. In addition to the normal scientific research there is the $1,000,00 Palo Alto Longevity Prize that is being offered to anyone who can come up with an effective anti-aging treatment.
As of 2015, all known anti-aging treatments are only partially effective. Depending on when one starts a comprehensive anti-aging program, one can probably extend one’s life by 10 to 25 years. Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health estimated that an anti-aging lifestyle can add 24.6 more productive years to one’s lifespan. Anti-aging knowledge increases at a rate of about 10 times every 10 years. This probably means that for many of us there is more than enough time to reap the anticipated benefits in anti-aging research. One day soon, aging, like many other diseases, will be cured. While we wait for those anti-aging technological singularities to occur the name of the game is to ensure we stay healthy long enough repeat their benefits.
As a former engineer I have a strong affinity to all sciences including biology.
My interests include following advances in the fields of anti-aging, health and nutrition. Rapid advances in these areas will vanquish the disease we call aging.
Through my articles and website I want to help you maintain your good health for the next 10 to 25 years. I believe this can be done by a daily program that includes moderate exercise, a healthy diet that includes vitamins and related supplements, and taking advantage of any advances in related research. My hope is that within the next 25 years or less, the fruits of anti-aging research will become available to everyone.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9239681
April 24, 2016 by Leigh St John
· Comments Off on Take a Number: Five Ways to Look at Age
Filed under: General
One for the Ages
Satchel Paige was a great baseball pitcher, one of the greatest of all time. He was an African-American and, due to the racial discrimination of the time, most of his outstanding career was not spent in the (white) major leagues. However, after the historic breakthrough by the courageous and talented Jackie Robinson (Mr. Paige’s junior by about 14 years), Satchel Paige pitched in the major leagues for a number of years. In fact, he was still able to get major league batters out at the age of 60! (Mr. Paige’s age at his retirement from baseball is not known for certain because no one, probably including Mr. Paige himself, knew his exact year of birth; some thought he was older than 60). Mr. Paige revealed a mind as sharp as the break on his curve ball when he asked this profound question for the ages:
“How old would you be if you did not know how old you are?”
These writings are dedicated to the memory of Satchel Paige and to all the so-called “over-the-hill” guys and gals in every sport and in every area of life, from Churchill and Reagan in politics to Jessica Tandy in acting and Paul McCartney in fatherhood. They and many like them in the past and present will be joined by many more in the future who are not really “over the hill” because they are too busy taking the hill.
Five Ways to Look at Age
The most common way to look at age is the Chronological. This is the one that everyone is familiar with. It is simply the time that has passed since your date of birth to today. It is the one that governments and insurance companies require of you and that your Doctor knows, even if your boy friend doesn’t. It is a unidimensional measure because it considers only time. It is uniform because everybody who is 48 years, 6 months, and 3 weeks old is exactly that, chronologically. People who view age only from the chronological perspective are somewhere between dumb and dumber.
True Age is another and better way to look at your age. True age is basically what a measurement of all the biomarkers of aging would reveal about you. Here’s four points about true age. One, if a well-trained physician did NOT know how old you are but reviewed a print-out of your biomarkers, she or he could accurately estimate your true age. Two, your true age is not uniform but varies by individual: you can be younger or older than your chronological age. Three, true age is multidimensional rather than confined to time. Four, absolutely nothing can be done about chronological age because it is fixed, but a great deal can be done about true age.
Appearance Age is the age you appear to be to others. It no doubt has some relationship to both chronological age and true age. Yet it is different. This is because it is heavily influenced by a number of factors outside the scope of biomarker measurement, not the least of which is attitude. We all know people that appear to be quite a bit younger or older than their chronological age. But the only scientific way to measure a person’s appearance age would be to have a representative sample of the population observe a person for at least a few minutes. A quick glance is not sufficient because appearance age includes factors such as movement of the body and alertness, not just a frozen face. Then the estimates from all members of the representative sample would be gathered, simple statistical measures applied, and Voila! You have the person’s appearance age. Of course, unless we are part of a study, none of us will ever get this scientific about it. We will just have to rely on random comments from friends, family, and nice or mean strangers to estimate our appearance age; and usually it’s a pretty good estimate.
A new way to look at age, which occurred to me awhile back, is what I call one’s N.E.A.T. age. This is simply one’s time left on the planet from right Now to the time of death. This age is unknowable by readers or anyone, except those committed to imminent suicide (and these poor folks are no more likely to take the short time remaining to do age calculations than they are to be caught dead reading an article about lively longevity). The best we can do is make a calculated estimate based on what we know about the general population and factor in any pluses or minuses that apply to us individually.
The N in NEAT of course stands for Now since the calculation is from the present, today, right now. E is for Elusive because I believe moments of time are elusive. As we humans try to hold or capture a moment of time it eludes us because the next moment is here, and then the next. Time and life are a flow.
The A in NEAT is for Allotted. Everyone who has ever lived has only so much time to live. Some have short lives, some have long lives, and some have lives neither particularly long nor short. But human life is finite and almost certainly will remain finite into the distant future if not forever. We do not need to take sides in the age-old debate about whether or not our allotted time is predestined by God in order to recognize that the amount is finite.
Of course, T is for Time. Time remaining is what it is all about. As has been oft noted: a millionaire on his death bed would gladly exchange his riches for a little more time, say one more day of healthy living.
So one’s NEAT age is one’s Now Elusive Allotted Time. It is a concept that provides a different perspective on aging and on life. For example, let’s suppose there was a 30-year old person named Terry and a 60-year old person named Sydney living in the same town in 1960. Conventional wisdom and simple arithmetic agree that Sydney was twice as old as Terry at that time. Such wisdom carries the (usually) unstated assumption that Terry is about 30 years further from the grave than Sydney. Statistically, this is difficult to argue with. But statistics are oft off for an individual and sometimes by a wide margin.
Let’s suppose that Terry had a lifetime of very bad health habits and, never having had the opportunity to read my writings, continued the very bad habits. Poor Terry expired a little shy of 40. (The same fate could have befallen Terry due to a dreaded disease or tragic accident.) Sydney, on the other hand, decided at some point to lead a health-conscious life. Sydney made good choices and stuck with them. Sydney enjoyed basically good health beyond age 100 before passing on. When Sydney was 60 and Terry was 30, Sydney had a NEAT age of 40+ and Terry had a NEAT age just under 10. So way back in 1960, who was younger: the one with less than a decade of life left, or the one with more than four decades of vibrant life left? One of the neat things about the NEAT age is that the bigger this age number the better.
The fifth and final way that we will look at age is one’s Ideal Age. Your ideal age is your age of choice, your preferred age. The concept of ideal age brings us back to Satchel Paige’s question:
How old would you be if you did not know how old you are?
In a sense, perhaps most of us do NOT know how old we are anyhow. Sure we know our chronological age, and some of us have a rough gauge of our appearance age. But few of us know our true age, and none of us knows our NEAT age. So it should not be so difficult to put chronological age aside for a few moments and answer Mr. Paige’s question.
Before leaping to an answer like 21, keep in my mind that successful living usually involves a combination of physical vigor, mental acuity, and wisdom. Personally, my ideal age is 37; thus even at my next birthday I will still be one year younger than all the women over 40.
What about you? What’s your number? What’s your ideal age? The way my anti-aging program works for you is that after reflection you establish your ideal age. Then we work with all the tools and techniques of the program to bring your true age into ever closer alignment with your ideal age. There is a balance to be struck. A 90-year old reader shooting for an ideal age of 19 is setting up way too much of a challenge and thus is setting up for failure. A 50-year old reader settling for an ideal age of 45 is not challenging herself or himself enough.
Take a number.
Satchel Paige was the impetus for me to write the close to this article:
When it comes to matters of age,
It is best to take a page out of Paige,
And move forward with grace,
Paying no mind to this myth of the human race.
Gary Patrick is a certified anti-aging professional (Giovane Medical Services). He is also an author, hypnotist, personal trainer, and speaker. Free stuff is available for a limited time at his web site: [http://rapidresults.biz]
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Gary_Patrick/18668
April 18, 2016 by Leigh St John
· Comments Off on The Development of Old Age and Related Issues
Filed under: General
In traditional Chinese and other Asian cultures the aged were highly respected and cared for. The Igabo tribesmen of Eastern Nigeria value dependency in their aged and involve them in care of children and the administration of tribal affairs (Shelton, A. in Kalish R. Uni Michigan 1969).
In Eskimo culture the grandmother was pushed out into the ice-flow to die as soon as she became useless.
Western societies today usually resemble to some degree the Eskimo culture, only the “ice-flows” have names such a “Sunset Vista” and the like. Younger generations no longer assign status to the aged and their abandonment is always in danger of becoming the social norm.
There has been a tendency to remove the aged from their homes and put them in custodial care. To some degree the government provides domiciliary care services to prevent or delay this, but the motivation probably has more to do with expense than humanity.
In Canada and some parts of the USA old people are being utilised as foster-grandparents in child care agencies.
SOME BASIC DEFINITIONS
What is Aging?
Aging: Aging is a natural phenomenon that refers to changes occurring throughout the life span and result in differences in structure and function between the youthful and elder generation.
Gerontology: Gerontology is the study of aging and includes science, psychology and sociology.
Geriatrics: A relatively new field of medicine specialising in the health problems of advanced age.
Social aging: Refers to the social habits and roles of individuals with respect to their culture and society. As social aging increases individual usually experience a decrease in meaningful social interactions.
Biological aging: Refers to the physical changes in the body systems during the later decades of life. It may begin long before the individual reaches chronological age 65.
Cognitive aging: Refers to decreasing ability to assimilate new information and learn new behaviours and skills.
GENERAL PROBLEMS OF AGING
Eric Erikson (Youth and the life cycle. Children. 7:43-49 Mch/April 1960) developed an “ages and stages” theory of human development that involved 8 stages after birth each of which involved a basic dichotomy representing best case and worst case outcomes. Below are the dichotomies and their developmental relevance:
Prenatal stage – conception to birth.
- Infancy. Birth to 2 years – basic trust vs. basic distrust. Hope.
- Early childhood, 3 to 4 years – autonomy vs. self doubt/shame. Will.
- Play age, 5 to 8 years – initiative vs. guilt. Purpose.
- School age, 9to 12 – industry vs. inferiority. Competence.
- Adolescence, 13 to 19 – identity vs. identity confusion. Fidelity.
- Young adulthood – intimacy vs. isolation. Love.
- Adulthood, generativity vs. self absorption. Care.
- Mature age- Ego Integrity vs. Despair. Wisdom.
This stage of older adulthood, i.e. stage 8, begins about the time of retirement and continues throughout one’s life. Achieving ego integrity is a sign of maturity while failing to reach this stage is an indication of poor development in prior stages through the life course.
Ego integrity: This means coming to accept one’s whole life and reflecting on it in a positive manner. According to Erikson, achieving integrity means fully accepting one’ self and coming to terms with death. Accepting responsibility for one’s life and being able to review the past with satisfaction is essential. The inability to do this leads to despair and the individual will begin to fear death. If a favourable balance is achieved during this stage, then wisdom is developed.
Psychological and personality aspects:
Aging has psychological implications. Next to dying our recognition that we are aging may be one of the most profound shocks we ever receive. Once we pass the invisible line of 65 our years are bench marked for the remainder of the game of life. We are no longer “mature age” we are instead classified as “old”, or “senior citizens”. How we cope with the changes we face and stresses of altered status depends on our basic personality. Here are 3 basic personality types that have been identified. It may be a oversimplification but it makes the point about personality effectively:
a. The autonomous – people who seem to have the resources for self-renewal. They may be dedicated to a goal or idea and committed to continuing productivity. This appears to protect them somewhat even against physiological aging.
b.The adjusted – people who are rigid and lacking in adaptability but are supported by their power, prestige or well structured routine. But if their situation changes drastically they become psychiatric casualties.
c.The anomic. These are people who do not have clear inner values or a protective life vision. Such people have been described as prematurely resigned and they may deteriorate rapidly.
Summary of stresses of old age.
a. Retirement and reduced income. Most people rely on work for self worth, identity and social interaction. Forced retirement can be demoralising.
b. Fear of invalidism and death. The increased probability of falling prey to illness from which there is no recovery is a continual source of anxiety. When one has a heart attack or stroke the stress becomes much worse.
Some persons face death with equanimity, often psychologically supported by a religion or philosophy. Others may welcome death as an end to suffering or insoluble problems and with little concern for life or human existence. Still others face impending death with suffering of great stress against which they have no ego defenses.
c. Isolation and loneliness. Older people face inevitable loss of loved ones, friends and contemporaries. The loss of a spouse whom one has depended on for companionship and moral support is particularly distressing. Children grow up, marry and become preoccupied or move away. Failing memory, visual and aural impairment may all work to make social interaction difficult. And if this then leads to a souring of outlook and rigidity of attitude then social interaction becomes further lessened and the individual may not even utilise the avenues for social activity that are still available.
d. Reduction in sexual function and physical attractiveness. Kinsey et al, in their Sexual behaviour in the human male, (Phil., Saunders, 1948) found that there is a gradual decrease in sexual activity with advancing age and that reasonably gratifying patterns of sexual activity can continue into extreme old age. The aging person also has to adapt to loss of sexual attractiveness in a society which puts extreme emphasis on sexual attractiveness. The adjustment in self image and self concept that are required can be very hard to make.
e. Forces tending to self devaluation. Often the experience of the older generation has little perceived relevance to the problems of the young and the older person becomes deprived of participation in decision making both in occupational and family settings. Many parents are seen as unwanted burdens and their children may secretly wish they would die so they can be free of the burden and experience some financial relief or benefit. Senior citizens may be pushed into the role of being an old person with all this implies in terms of self devaluation.
4 Major Categories of Problems or Needs:
Physiological Changes: Catabolism (the breakdown of protoplasm) overtakes anabolism (the build-up of protoplasm). All body systems are affected and repair systems become slowed. The aging process occurs at different rates in different individuals.
Physical appearance and other changes:
Loss of subcutaneous fat and less elastic skin gives rise to wrinkled appearance, sagging and loss of smoothness of body contours. Joints stiffen and become painful and range of joint movement becomes restricted, general mobility lessened.
Increase of fibrous tissue in chest walls and lungs leads restricts respiratory movement and less oxygen is consumed. Older people more likelyto have lower respiratory infections whereas young people have upper respiratory infections.
Tooth decay and loss of teeth can detract from ease and enjoyment in eating. Atrophy of the taste buds means food is inclined to be tasteless and this should be taken into account by carers. Digestive changes occur from lack of exercise (stimulating intestines) and decrease in digestive juice production. Constipation and indigestion are likely to follow as a result. Financial problems can lead to the elderly eating an excess of cheap carbohydrates rather than the more expensive protein and vegetable foods and this exacerbates the problem, leading to reduced vitamin intake and such problems as anemia and increased susceptibility to infection.
Adaptation to stress:
All of us face stress at all ages. Adaptation to stress requires the consumption of energy. The 3 main phases of stress are:
1. Initial alarm reaction. 2. Resistance. 3. Exhaustion
and if stress continues tissue damage or aging occurs. Older persons have had a lifetime of dealing with stresses. Energy reserves are depleted and the older person succumbs to stress earlier than the younger person. Stress is cumulative over a lifetime. Research results, including experiments with animals suggests that each stress leaves us more vulnerable to the next and that although we might think we’ve “bounced back” 100% in fact each stress leaves it scar. Further, stress is psycho-biological meaning the kind of stress is irrelevant. A physical stress may leave one more vulnerable to psychological stress and vice versa. Rest does not completely restore one after a stressor. Care workers need to be mindful of this and cognizant of the kinds of things that can produce stress for aged persons.
COGNITIVE CHANGE Habitual Behaviour:
Sigmund Freud noted that after the age of 50, treatment of neuroses via psychoanalysis was difficult because the opinions and reactions of older people were relatively fixed and hard to shift.
Over-learned behaviour: This is behaviour that has been learned so well and repeated so often that it has become automatic, like for example typing or running down stairs. Over-learned behaviour is hard to change. If one has lived a long time one is likely to have fixed opinions and ritualised behaviour patterns or habits.
Compulsive behaviour: Habits and attitudes that have been learned in the course of finding ways to overcome frustration and difficulty are very hard to break. Tension reducing habits such as nail biting, incessant humming, smoking or drinking alcohol are especially hard to change at any age and particularly hard for persons who have been practising them over a life time.
The psychology of over-learned and compulsive behaviours has severe implications for older persons who find they have to live in what for them is a new and alien environment with new rules and power relations.
Older people have a continual background of neural noise making it more difficult for them to sort out and interpret complex sensory input. In talking to an older person one should turn off the TV, eliminate as many noises and distractions as possible, talk slowly and relate to one message or idea at a time.
Memories from the distant past are stronger than more recent memories. New memories are the first to fade and last to return.
Time patterns also can get mixed – old and new may get mixed.
Intelligence reaches a peak and can stay high with little deterioration if there is no neurological damage. People who have unusually high intelligence to begin with seem to suffer the least decline. Education and stimulation also seem to play a role in maintaining intelligence.
Intellectual impairment. Two diseases of old age causing cognitive decline are Alzheimer’s syndrome and Pick’s syndrome. In Pick’s syndrome there is inability to concentrate and learn and also affective responses are impaired.
Degenerative Diseases: Slow progressive physical degeneration of cells in the nervous system. Genetics appear to be an important factor. Usually start after age 40 (but can occur as early as 20s).
ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE Degeneration of all areas of cortex but particularly frontal and temporal lobes. The affected cells actually die. Early symptoms resemble neurotic disorders: Anxiety, depression, restlessness sleep difficulties.
Progressive deterioration of all intellectual faculties (memory deficiency being the most well known and obvious). Total mass of the brain decreases, ventricles become larger. No established treatment.
PICK’S DISEASE Rare degenerative disease. Similar to Alzheimer’s in terms of onset, symptomatology and possible genetic aetiology. However it affects circumscribed areas of the brain, particularly the frontal areas which leads to a loss of normal affect.
PARKINSON’S DISEASE Neuropathology: Loss of neurons in the basal ganglia.
Symptoms: Movement abnormalities: rhythmical alternating tremor of extremities, eyelids and tongue along with rigidity of the muscles and slowness of movement (akinesia).
It was once thought that Parkinson’s disease was not associated with intellectual deterioration, but it is now known that there is an association between global intellectual impairment and Parkinson’s where it occurs late in life.
The cells lost in Parkinson’s are associated with the neuro-chemical Dopamine and the motor symptoms of Parkinson’s are associated the dopamine deficiency. Treatment involves administration of dopamine precursor L-dopa which can alleviate symptoms including intellectual impairment. Research suggests it may possibly bring to the fore emotional effects in patients who have had psychiatric illness at some prior stage in their lives.
AFFECTIVE DOMAIN In old age our self concept gets its final revision. We make a final assessment of the value of our lives and our balance of success and failures.
How well a person adapts to old age may be predicated by how well the person adapted to earlier significant changes. If the person suffered an emotional crisis each time a significant change was needed then adaptation to the exigencies of old age may also be difficult. Factors such as economic security, geographic location and physical health are important to the adaptive process.
Need Fulfilment: For all of us, according to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs theory, we are not free to pursue the higher needs of self actualisation unless the basic needs are secured. When one considers that many, perhaps most, old people are living in poverty and continually concerned with basic survival needs, they are not likely to be happily satisfying needs related to prestige, achievement and beauty.
Belonging, love, identification
Esteem: Achievement, prestige, success, self respect
Self actualisation: Expressing one’s interests and talents to the full.
Note: Old people who have secured their basic needs may be motivated to work on tasks of the highest levels in the hierarchy – activities concerned with aesthetics, creativity and altruistic matters, as compensation for loss of sexual attractiveness and athleticism. Aged care workers fixated on getting old people to focus on social activities may only succeed in frustrating and irritating them if their basic survival concerns are not secured to their satisfaction.
Social aging according to Cumming, E. and Henry, W. (Growing old: the aging process of disengagement, NY, Basic 1961) follows a well defined pattern:
- Change in role. Change in occupation and productivity. Possibly change in attitude to work.
- Loss of role, e.g. retirement or death of a husband.
- Reduced social interaction. With loss of role social interactions are diminished, eccentric adjustment can further reduce social interaction, damage to self concept, depression.
- Awareness of scarcity of remaining time. This produces further curtailment of activity in interest of saving time.
Havighurst, R. et al (in B. Neugarten (ed.) Middle age and aging, U. of Chicago, 1968) and others have suggested that disengagement is not an inevitable process. They believe the needs of the old are essentially the same as in middle age and the activities of middle age should be extended as long as possible. Havighurst points out the decrease in social interaction of the aged is often largely the result of society withdrawing from the individual as much as the reverse. To combat this he believes the individual must vigorously resist the limitations of his social world.
DEATH The fear of the dead amongst tribal societies is well established. Persons who had ministered to the dead were taboo and required observe various rituals including seclusion for varying periods of time. In some societies from South America to Australia it is taboo for certain persons to utter the name of the dead. Widows and widowers are expected to observe rituals in respect for the dead.
Widows in the Highlands of New Guinea around Goroka chop of one of their own fingers. The dead continue their existence as spirits and upsetting them can bring dire consequences.
Wahl, C in “The fear of death”, 1959 noted that the fear of death occurs as early as the 3rd year of life. When a child loses a pet or grandparent fears reside in the unspoken questions: Did I cause it? Will happen to you (parent) soon? Will this happen to me? The child in such situations needs to re-assure that the departure is not a censure, and that the parent is not likely to depart soon. Love, grief, guilt, anger are a mix of conflicting emotions that are experienced.
CONTEMPORARY ATTITUDES TO DEATH
Our culture places high value on youth, beauty, high status occupations, social class and anticipated future activities and achievement. Aging and dying are denied and avoided in this system. The death of each person reminds us of our own mortality.
The death of the elderly is less disturbing to members of Western society because the aged are not especially valued. Surveys have established that nurses for example attach more importance to saving a young life than an old life. In Western society there is a pattern of avoiding dealing with the aged and dying aged patient.
Stages of dying. Elisabeth Kubler Ross has specialised in working with dying patients and in her “On death and dying”, NY, Macmillan, 1969, summarised 5 stages in dying.
- Denial and isolation. “No, not me”.
- Anger. “I’ve lived a good life so why me?”
- Bargaining. Secret deals are struck with God. “If I can live until…I promise to…”
- Depression. (In general the greatest psychological problem of the aged is depression). Depression results from real and threatened loss.
- Acceptance of the inevitable.
Kubler Ross’s typology as set out above should, I believe be taken with a grain of salt and not slavishly accepted. Celebrated US Journalist David Rieff who was in June ’08 a guest of the Sydney writer’s festival in relation to his book, “Swimming in a sea of death: a son’s memoir” (Melbourne University Press) expressly denied the validity of the Kubler Ross typology in his Late Night Live interview (Australian ABC radio) with Philip Adams June 9th ’08. He said something to the effect that his mother had regarded her impending death as murder. My own experience with dying persons suggests that the human ego is extraordinarily resilient. I recall visiting a dying colleague in hospital just days before his death. He said, “I’m dying, I don’t like it but there’s nothing I can do about it”, and then went on to chortle about how senior academics at an Adelaide university had told him they were submitting his name for a the Order of Australia (the new “Knighthood” replacement in Australia). Falling in and out of lucid thought with an oxygen tube in his nostrils he was nevertheless still highly interested in the “vain glories of the world”. This observation to me seemed consistent with Rieff’s negative assessment of Kubler Ross’s theories.
THE AGED IN RELATION TO YOUNGER PEOPLE
The aged share with the young the same needs: However, the aged often have fewer or weaker resources to meet those needs. Their need for social interaction may be ignored by family and care workers.
Family should make time to visit their aged members and invite them to their homes. The aged like to visit children and relate to them through games and stories.
Meaningful relationships can be developed via foster-grandparent programs. Some aged are not aware of their income and health entitlements. Family and friends should take the time to explain these. Some aged are too proud to access their entitlements and this problem should be addressed in a kindly way where it occurs.
It is best that the aged be allowed as much choice as possible in matters related to living arrangements, social life and lifestyle.
Communities serving the aged need to provide for the aged via such things as lower curbing, and ramps.
Carers need to examine their own attitude to aging and dying. Denial in the carer is detected by the aged person and it can inhibit the aged person from expressing negative feelings – fear, anger. If the person can express these feelings to someone then that person is less likely to die with a sense of isolation and bitterness.
A METAPHYSICAL PERSPECTIVE
The following notes are my interpretation of a Dr. Depak Chopra lecture entitled, “The New Physics of Healing” which he presented to the 13th Scientific Conference of the American Holistic Medical Association. Dr. Depak Chopra is an endocrinologist and a former Chief of Staff of New England Hospital, Massachusetts. I am deliberately omitting the detail of his explanations of the more abstract, ephemeral and controversial ideas.
Original material from 735 Walnut Street, Boulder, Colorado 83002,
Phone. +303 449 6229.
In the lecture Dr. Chopra presents a model of the universe and of all organisms as structures of interacting centres of electromagnetic energy linked to each other in such a way that anything affecting one part of a system or structure has ramifications throughout the entire structure. This model becomes an analogue not only for what happens within the structure or organism itself, but between the organism and both its physical and social environments. In other words there is a correlation between psychological conditions, health and the aging process. Dr. Chopra in his lecture reconciles ancient Vedic (Hindu) philosophy with modern psychology and quantum physics.
Premature Precognitive Commitment: Dr. Chopra invokes experiments that have shown that flies kept for a long time in a jar do not quickly leave the jar when the top is taken off. Instead they accept the jar as the limit of their universe. He also points out that in India baby elephants are often kept tethered to a small twig or sapling. In adulthood when the elephant is capable of pulling over a medium sized tree it can still be successfully tethered to a twig! As another example he points to experiments in which fish are bred on
2 sides of a fish tank containing a divider between the 2 sides. When the divider is removed the fish are slow to learn that they can now swim throughout the whole tank but rather stay in the section that they accept as their universe. Other experiments have demonstrated that kittens brought up in an environment of vertical stripes and structures, when released in adulthood keep bumping into anything aligned horizontally as if they were unable to see anything that is horizontal. Conversely kittens brought up in an environment of horizontal stripes when released bump into vertical structures, apparently unable to see them.
The whole point of the above experiments is that they demonstrate Premature Precognitive Commitment. The lesson to be learned is that our sensory apparatus develops as a result of initial experience and how we’ve been taught to interpret it.
What is the real look of the world? It doesn’t exist. The way the world looks to us is determined by the sensory receptors we have and our interpretation of that look is determined by our premature precognitive commitments. Dr Chopra makes the point that less than a billionth of the available stimuli make it into our nervous systems. Most of it is screened, and what gets through to us is whatever we are expecting to find on the basis of our precognitive commitments.
Dr. Chopra also discusses the diseases that are actually caused by mainstream medical interventions, but this material gets too far away from my central intention. Dr. Chopra discusses in lay terms the physics of matter, energy and time by way of establishing the wider context of our existence. He makes the point that our bodies including the bodies of plants are mirrors of cosmic rhythms and exhibit changes correlating even with the tides.
Dr. Chopra cites the experiments of Dr. Herbert Spencer of the US National Institute of Health. He injected mice with Poly-IC, an immuno-stimulant while making the mice repeatedly smell camphor. After the effect of the Poly-IC had worn off he again exposed the mice to the camphor smell. The smell of camphor had the effect of causing the mice’s immune system to automatically strengthen as if they had been injected with the stimulant. He then took another batch of mice and injected them with cyclophosphamide which tends to destroy the immune system while exposing them to the smell of camphor. Later after being returned to normal just the smell of camphor was enough to cause destruction of their immune system. Dr. Chopra points out that whether or not camphor enhanced or destroyed the mice’s immune system was entirely determined by an interpretation of the meaning of the smell of camphor. The interpretation is not just in the brain but in each cell of the organism. We are bound to our imagination and our early experiences.
Chopra cites a study by the Massachusetts Dept of Health Education and Welfare into risk factors for heart disease – family history, cholesterol etc. The 2 most important risk factors were found to be psychological measures – Self Happiness Rating and Job Satisfaction. They found most people died of heart disease on a Monday!
Chopra says that for every feeling there is a molecule. If you are experiencing tranquillity your body will be producing natural valium. Chemical changes in the brain are reflected by changes in other cells including blood cells. The brain produces neuropeptides and brain structures are chemically tuned to these neuropeptide receptors. Neuropeptides (neurotransmitters) are the chemical concommitants of thought. Chopra points out the white blood cells (a part of the immune system) have neuropeptide receptors and are “eavesdropping” on our thinking. Conversely the immune system produces its own neuropeptides which can influence the nervous system. He goes on to say that cells in all parts of the body including heart and kidneys for example also produce neuropeptides and neuropeptide sensitivity. Chopra assures us that most neurologists would agree that the nervous system and the immune system are parallel systems.
Other studies in physiology: The blood interlukin-2 levels of medical students decreased as exam time neared and their interlukin receptor capacities also lowered. Chopra says if we are having fun to the point of exhilaration our natural interlukin-2 levels become higher. Interlukin-2 is a powerful and very expensive anti-cancer drug. The body is a printout of consciousness. If we could change the way we look at our bodies at a genuine, profound level then our bodies would actually change.
On the subject of “time” Chopra cites Sir Thomas Gall and Steven Hawkins, stating that our description of the universe as having a past, present, and future are constructed entirely out of our interpretation of change. But in reality linear time doesn’t exist.
Chopra explains the work of Alexander Leaf a former Harvard Professor of Preventative Medicine who toured the world investigating societies where people lived beyond 100 years (these included parts of Afghanistan, Soviet Georgia, Southern Andes). He looked at possible factors including climate, genetics, and diet. Leaf concluded the most important factor was the collective perception of aging in these societies.
Amongst the Tama Humara of the Southern Andes there was a collective belief that the older you got the more physically able you got. They had a tradition of running and the older one became then generally the better at running one got. The best runner was aged 60. Lung capacity and other measures actually improved with age. People were healthy until well into their 100s and died in their sleep. Chopra remarks that things have changed since the introduction of Budweiser (beer) and TV.
[DISCUSSION: How might TV be a factor in changing the former ideal state of things?]
Chopra refers to Dr. Ellen Langor a former Harvard Psychology professor’s work. Langor advertised for 100 volunteers aged over 70 years. She took them to a Monastery outside Boston to play “Let’s Pretend”. They were divided into 2 groups each of which resided in a different part of the building. One group, the control group spent several days talking about the 1950s. The other group, the experimental group had to live as if in the year 1959 and talk about it in the present tense. What appeared on their TV screens were the old newscasts and movies. They read old newspapers and magazines of the period. After 3 days everyone was photographed and the photographs judged by independent judges who knew nothing of the nature of the experiment. The experimental group seemed to have gotten younger in appearance. Langor then arranged for them to be tested for 100 physiological parameters of aging which included of course blood pressure, near point vision and DHEA levels. After 10 days of living as if in 1959 all parameters had reversed by the equivalent of at least 20 years.
Chopra concludes from Langor’s experiment: “We are the metabolic end product of our sensory experiences. How we interpret them depends on the collective mindset which influences individual biological entropy and aging.”
Can one escape the current collective mindset and reap the benefits in longevity and health? Langor says, society won’t let you escape. There are too many reminders of how most people think linear time is and how it expresses itself in entropy and aging – men are naughty at 40 and on social welfare at 55, women reach menopause at 40 etc. We get to see so many other people aging and dying that it sets the pattern that we follow.
Chopra concludes we are the metabolic product of our sensory experience and our interpretation gets structured in our biology itself. Real change comes from change in the collective consciousness – otherwise it cannot occur within the individual.
Chopra, D. The New Physics of Healing. 735 Walnut Street, Boulder, Colorado 83002,
Phone. +303 449 6229.
Coleman, J. C. Abnormal psychology and modern life. Scott Foresman & Co.
Lugo, J. and Hershey, L. Human development a multidisciplinary approach to the psychology of individual growth, NY, Macmillan.
Dennis. Psychology of human behaviour for nurses. Lond. W. B.Saunders.
Dr. Victor Barnes is an Adelaide psychologist and hypnotherapist. He has also had three decades of experience in adult education including serving as Dean of a Sri Lankan college (ICBT) teaching several Australian degrees. His overseas experience includes studies and consulting experience in USA, PNG, Poland and Sri Lanka.
By: Dr. Danika Bowen, Provost/Vice President of Academic Affairs and Accreditation Liaison Officer
Try being a heart!
When you are working – it’s working.
When you are playing – it’s working.
When you are sleeping – it’s working.
Your heart is under pressure to perform 24 hours a day, seven days a week. And if you are among the one in three adults in the United States living with high blood pressure, you run the risk of your heart “quitting” on you at any time – and you probably don’t even know it.
Virtually symptom-free, the American Heart Association (AHA) estimates that while more than 78 million people in the United States have high blood pressure, half don’t even know it. Uncontrolled and untreated high blood pressure can lead to stroke, heart attack, heart failure, erectile dysfunction, aneurysm, kidney failure, atherosclerosis (fatty buildup in the arteries) and even blindness.
May is High Blood Pressure Education Month. There is no better time to understand the risk factors that lead to high blood pressure and how to best combat this silent killer.
Blood pressure is the force of blood on the walls of the blood vessels as blood flows through them. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), this pressure naturally rises and falls during the day, but when it is consistently too high, it is considered high blood pressure. The medical term is hypertension.
Blood pressure is usually expressed as a fraction, where the first number – called systolic pressure – measures the force in the arteries when the heart pumps, and the second number – diastolic pressure – measures the heart at rest. Blood pressure measuring 120/80 is considered in the normal range.
High Blood Pressure
If your blood pressure is closer to 120-139 systolic or 80-89 diastolic, you are considered to have prehypertension. If your blood pressure is above 140 systolic or above 90 diastolic, you are considered to have high blood pressure, or hypertension.
While the exact cause of high blood pressure is unknown, the AHA reports the following potential risk factors to developing the condition:
- Heavy alcohol use
- High-sodium diet
- Race – African-Americans develop high blood pressure at a higher rate than any other race
- Age – Men are more likely to develop high blood pressure after age 35; women are more likely to develop high blood pressure after menopause
Combating High Blood Pressure
Among the easiest ways to reduce slightly elevated blood pressure or prehypertension:
- Lose weight
- Add foods with potassium, magnesium, calcium, lean proteins and fiber to your diet
- Limit foods with sodium, trans fats and saturated fats to your diet
- Limit alcohol consumption
- Quitting smoking and avoiding second hand smoke
If you develop hypertension, depending on the severity, the above tactics are recommended in combination with one or more prescribed medications, all of which should be done under a doctor’s care.
Our hearts beat approximately 100,000 times a day, and for someone suffering from high blood pressure, that’s 100,000 beats closer to a number of deadly conditions.
In observance of National High Blood Pressure Education Month, Carrington College’s 18 campuses nationwide are attempting to set a Guinness Book World Record for the most blood pressure tested in an eight-hour period on May 21, 2015. To join in this World Record attempt and get your blood pressure checked for free, visit Carrington College located at 5740 S Eastern Ave #140 in Las Vegas on May 21 anytime from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. No appointment necessary.
Carrington College offers a variety of programs that lead to a certificate or associate degree. Programs prepare students for careers in the medical, dental and veterinary fields. For more information, visit carrington.edu.
Immunize Nevada Reminds Nevadans: It’s Time to Get your Flu Vaccine
Reno, Nev. (October 15, 2015) – October 4 was significant for an inauspicious reason, according to the Centers for Disease Control – it marked the date the CDC officially began tracking cases of the flu.
“Seasonal flu vaccines are your best protection against getting flu,” said Heidi Parker, executive director of Immunize Nevada. “Everyone 6 months and older should get a flu vaccine every year. The flu vaccine can literally save your life or the life of someone you love. Getting vaccinated not only protects you, but also those in our community who are vulnerable — like children and seniors.”
Nevadans are increasingly seeing flu vaccine reminders at local pharmacies, and family doctors/pediatricians are now reminding patients to get themselves and their children vaccinated.
These are valid reminders. Because while some think flu is akin to a “bad cold,” it’s something altogether different — and far more serious.
CDC Chief Thomas Frieden spoke during a National Foundation for Infectious Diseases press conference Sept. 17, noting that the 2014-2015 season had the highest hospitalization rate among seniors ever documented.
And so far this year, the new vaccine formulation appears to be a good match for the infection.
“The [strains] that are causing very early disease are exactly as predicted, and it looks to me like the vaccine is going to be well protective,” Dr. William Schaffner, infectious disease specialist at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and the past president of the NFID, said at the press conference.
To emphasize the gravity of flu, the CDC and flu.gov ask people to keep a few facts and figures in:
- More than 200,000 Americans are hospitalized and thousands die every year from the influenza virus.
- During the 2014-2015 flu season, 146 pediatric deaths were reported from 40 states; that number is typically closer to 100.
- Eight pediatric deaths occurred in Nevada during the 2014-2015 flu season.
- Flu causes 38 million lost school days and 111 million lost workdays a year, resulting in more than $7 billion in lost wages.
- About 20,000 children under 5 are hospitalized each year from the flu.
- The median age of children who died from the flu virus from January 2014-June 2015 was 5.9 years old.
“This is not just a bad cold or headache,” Parker said. “Flu can — and does — kill.”
Flu vaccination, either by shot or nasal spray, is your best chance at not getting the flu, and Parker adds that Nevada has many options for no-cost flu vaccinations. Additionally, Immunize Nevada has a convenient interactive widget on its website, www.influencenevada.org; the “Flu Vaccine Finder” allows you to input your zip code, generating a list of locations nearby offering flu vaccine.
And according to the CDC, people should be vaccinated against flu as soon as possibly after vaccine becomes available — ideally by October.
“It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against the flu,” notes the CDC’s website.
But what if you do contract flu?
Flu symptoms include:
- A fever of 100 degrees or higher
- A cough and/or sore throat
- A runny or stuffy nose
- Headaches and/or body aches
- Nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea
CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or other necessities.
Prevention Is Our Mission: We are a diverse partnership of individuals, businesses and organizations committed to improving and protecting the health of children, teens, adults & seniors in Nevada. Our mission is to promote health & prevent the incidence of vaccine preventable diseases in Nevada through community partnerships & education.
Immunize Nevada is a statewide network of individuals, businesses, public health entities and organizations committed to improving and protecting the health of children, teens, adults and seniors in Nevada.
Established in 1995 as a small group of citizens concerned about Nevada’s immunization rate being the lowest in the country, Immunize Nevada now consists of more than 100 members working together to help improve the health of Nevadans through vaccination awareness, outreach and education.
We help keep Nevadans healthy and educated about immunizations. Some of our responsibilities include:
- Supporting healthcare professionals by providing education opportunities, conferences, office tools and incentives.
- Collaborating with regional, state and national partners to develop immunization projects and programs.
- Serving as an expert resource to community members.
- Providing outreach and education about the benefits of immunizing and the risks of not doing so.
- Advocating for pro-immunization policies.
Learn more about Immunize Nevada’s evolution from a small grassroots organization, to an award winning, statewide immunization coalition.
January 31, 2014 by Leigh St John
· Comments Off on Stem cell source found in tissue discarded in hip replacements
Filed under: Articles
Tissue that is typically discarded in routine hip replacement operations may offer a rich untapped source of stem cells that could be banked for later use in regenerative medicine, where patients’ own cells are used to treat disease or repair failing organs.
This was the implication of a new study led by the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Australia, published online recently in the journal Stem Cells Translational Medicine.
Study leader Prof. Melissa Knothe Tate and colleagues say, given the tens of thousands of hip replacements performed every year, their findings could have “profound implications” for clinical use.
Currently, to grow new bone or tissue after an infection, injury or the removal of a tumor, if the patient has not preservedstem cells in a cell bank (which is the case for the vast majority of older adults), the stem cells have to come from a donor, or the patient has to undergo surgery to have them harvested from their own bone marrow.
Prof. Knothe Tate explains how their study findings, which now need to be tested clinically, could offer a new source of stem cells for older patients:
“In hip replacement surgery, the…
Continue reading at: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/271995.php
(Family Features) With cold and flu season upon us, it may be tempting to hibernate until the danger of red, puffy eyes and a stuffy nose disappears. Waiting for a cold or flu to run its course can truly feel like an eternity, especially when the symptoms have you looking as bad as you feel.
While there is no guaranteed strategy for avoiding the flu or sniffles, there are steps you can take to safeguard yourself and your family. And if you do fall ill, taking extra care will help ease you through until you’re on the mend.
While the Centers for Disease Control recommends the flu shot as the single best preventive measure, you can also help ward off illness with healthy habits like these:
- Keep yourself and your belongings away from others who may be sick to prevent the spread of germs. Don’t share dishes and utensils in the kitchen, and provide sick family members with their own hand towels in the kitchen and bathroom.
- Wash your hands frequently using soap and water or an alcohol-based rub. Avoid unnecessarily touching your eyes, nose and mouth, which are easy portals for germs to enter your body.
- Keep your immune system running strong by eating sensible and nutritious meals, exercising regularly, managing stress in a healthy way and getting plenty of sleep.
If your prevention falls short and you find yourself combatting sniffles, take these steps to nudge yourself back to good health:
- Consult with your pharmacist or doctor about which medications may help relieve your symptoms.
- Use a soft facial tissue on your irritated skin. Puffs Plus Lotion is dermatologist-tested to be gentle and helps soothe irritated skin by locking in moisture
- Stay home for at least 24 hours after a fever passes. This will help you catch up on much-needed rest and prevent the chance of passing anything contagious on to your friends and co-workers.
- Calm stuffy sinuses with the steam of a long, hot shower. Take the sinus soothing a step further by using Puffs Plus Lotion with the Scent of Vicks.
- Cover your nose or mouth with a tissue like Puffs when sneezing or coughing to minimize the spread of germs.
As your symptoms ease, remember to take it easy and allow your body to fully recover so you don’t suffer a setback that needlessly prolongs your illness.
For more tips for warding off discomfort from a cold, flu or allergies, visit www.puffs.com.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Living with diabetes? Watch your mouth!
(Family Features) According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people with diabetes are two times more likely to develop gum disease. In fact, about one-third of people with diabetes have severe gum disease.
Why are those with diabetes more vulnerable to gum disease? High blood glucose levels impair the body’s ability to heal from oral infections and uncontrolled diabetes can make treating gum disease more difficult, according to the American Diabetes Association. The Association is joining with Colgate to launch a new “Watch Your Mouth!” campaign to help raise awareness surrounding the often over-looked link between oral health and diabetes. Here are some tips to help you live well with diabetes:
- Watch your mouth! Begin to develop healthy oral care habits, like brushing, flossing and visiting the dentist regularly. Research shows that brushing twice a day with Colgate Total toothpaste can help improve gum health in as little as four weeks.*
- Don’t miss out on your favorite foods. Just eat healthier versions that everyone in your family can enjoy. Making simple substitutions to most dishes can help increase nutritional value, while not sacrificing on taste.
- Use the right tools. Stay organized with a journal large enough to keep your diet, exercise, goals and health information together. Keep a week’s worth of prescriptions in one place with a handy pill case.
- Know your risks. The American Diabetes Association lists the common risk factors for diabetes as being 45 or older, being overweight, not exercising regularly, having high blood pressure and being a part of certain racial and ethnic groups.
- Visit your dentist. While your doctor and certified diabetes educator play an important role in helping with your diabetes, so does your dentist. If you don’t see a private-practice dentist, you can visit dental schools that provide services at a fraction of the cost to help you keep your mouth healthy.
For more expert tips and information, visit www.OralHealthAndDiabetes.com.
*Results improve with continued twice daily use, as shown in 6 month clinical studies of the general population.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
Dr. John Lunetta, D.O. arrived in Las Vegas more than a year ago to help with the American Red Cross Blood Services regional expansion. For decades, the Red Cross blood supply in Southern Nevada came from other areas of the country, mostly from Idaho, Montana and Utah. But over the course of the last year and a half, the team has grown the program of blood collection to that of supplying nine of the area’s 14 hospitals.
But Dr. Lunetta’s presence here makes this program so much more than a simple blood collection service. Licensed to practice in seven western states, and eight of our local hospitals, Dr. Lunetta assists local doctors when they have questions about using Red Cross blood products. Transfusion recommendations to find the most compatible blood or questions about reactions to transfusions are all topics on which Dr. Lunetta can speak.
Dr. Lunetta also brings with him the latest in patient blood management education. His contemporary approach allows local doctors to, when appropriate; use less product resulting in less risk to patients.
But there are additional American Red Cross Blood Services here in Las Vegas not available in some other regions known as clinical services. With the medical equipment and the skilled nurses that work with Dr. Lunetta, Clinical Services can offer one-on-one patient contact delivering care through an apheresis machine, which uses centrifugal force to separate blood into its constituent components. This is a method used in the treatment of leukemia patients, sickle cell patients, and a large number of neurologic and oncology patients. Dr. Lunetta also oversees treatments involving some new technology using extracorporeal photopheresis, or ECP. In layman’s terms, it’s like a tanning bed for your blood. Due to Dr. Lunetta’s expertise, some area patients will soon be able to receive treatment here that they could only get in California previously. It’s used to treat patients who suffer from Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma in which the skin is attacked by the patient’s own T-cells. The treatment calms those cells down and the skin begins to heal. An average patient needs to receive 150 – 300 procedures once every two weeks. Another more common use of this treatment is for patients who have graft vs. host disease; usually as a result of a bone marrow transplant, or other organ transplant such as lung or heart.
Many more procedures and innovations are in the pipeline that Dr. Lunetta and his staff may be able to offer in the future and the Red Cross is pushing the development of new ways in which Blood Services can help in our community. From his involvement with donors at blood drives to his work with patients who get the blood transfused, Dr. Lunetta is involved every step of the way.
Dr. Lunetta is available for interviews for print, online, radio and television. Well-spoken and with a talent to break complex medical ideas down into language that we can all understand, Dr. Lunetta is a delightful guest and talented subject matter expert.
To book Dr. Lunetta, or to interview him on his range of expertise, please contact the office of Lloyd Ziel at the contact below.
Public Information Officer | Communications and Public Affairs
American Red Cross
Southern Nevada Chapter
1771 E. Flamingo Rd. Suite 206-B
Las Vegas, NV 89119
With a documented, “rapid” increase in sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among older Americans, there’s cause for concern about unsafe sex practices happening in retirement communities around the country, says a recent New York Times opinion piece.
Both chlamydia infections and syphilis diagnoses rose substantially among seniors aged 65 and older between 2007 and 2011, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The numbers are similar to STD trends in the 20 to 24-year-old age group, notes Ezekiel J. Emanuel, an oncologist and vice provost at the University of Pennsylvania, and there are a few reasons why.
“First, retirement communities and assisted living facilities are becoming like college campuses,” he writes. “They cram a lot of similarly aged people together, and when they do, things naturally happen.”
Another factor: older people are living longer and healthier, allowing them to remain sexually active late into their lives. More than half of men and about 40% of women aged 60 and older report being sexually active, says Emanual citing a National Survey of Sexual Health and Behavior.
“But while they are having a lot of sex, seniors didn’t seem to get the safe sex memo…
Keep reading at: http://seniorhousingnews.com/2014/01/21/sex-and-the-senior-living-community-n-y-times/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=sex-and-the-senior-living-community-n-y-times&utm_reader=feedly
Two-year-old Sawyer Balonek of Las Vegas has been diagnosed with Bruton Agammaglobulinemia, an inherited immunodeficiency disease. He has to have an infusion of immunoglobulin every four weeks from plasma extracted from blood given by volunteer donors.
The blood products needed by Sawyer are provided by the American Red Cross. The Red Cross is the predominant blood supplier in Las Vegas and has held several blood drives in Sawyer’s honor to help make sure he gets the blood products he needs. Sawyer’s parents agree that Sawyer is alive today because of the excellent medical care he has received and the blood products provided by the Red Cross.
In 2010 a group of local hospitals invited the Red Cross to bid for the contract to supply blood in southern Nevada. The Red Cross won the contract, supplanting United Blood Services (UBS) as the provider of blood products for nine of the 14 hospitals in Las Vegas. In order to meet the demand, the Red Cross strives to collect almost 900 units per week.
According to Julia Wulf, chief executive officer of the American Red Cross Blood Service Region, “It is very challenging for us to collect enough blood in Las Vegas to meet the needs of the southern Nevada hospitals we serve. We need more donors and we need businesses, churches and other organizations to sponsor blood drives here.”
To make an appointment to donate blood, call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit redcrossblood.org.
For more information about scheduling a blood drive call (702) 522-3998.
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About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.
A new study has found that many people who stopped taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs were also taking an average of three other drugs that interfered with the normal metabolism of the statins.
The other drugs can contribute to a common side effect of taking statins – muscle pain – and often led people to discontinue use of a medication that could otherwise help save their life, researchers learned.
The interactions of many drugs with statins have been known of for some time, researchers said, but are not being adequately managed by physicians and pharmacists, who could often choose different medications or adjust dosages to retain the value of statin drugs without causing this side effect.
The research, done as part of a survey of more than 10,000 current and former statin users, found that use of medications which interfere with statin metabolism almost doubles the chance that a person will discontinue statin use due to muscle pain.
The issue is of growing importance because statin drugs are some of the most widely used medications in the world, proven to lower LDL, or “bad” cholesterol, and decrease the risk of heart attacks, heart disease, strokes and death. About 20 million people in the U.S. now take statins, and new guidelines have just been issued to further expand the types of health conditions for which statins may be of benefit. Based on those guidelines, the number of statin users could increase to more than 30 million.
The findings were published in the Journal of Clinical Lipidology by scientists from Oregon State University and four other universities or research institutes.
“We’ve known for some time of many medications that can interact with statins, but only now is it becoming clear that this is a significant contributor to the side effects, and often the reason some patients stop taking statins,” said Matt Ito, a professor in the OSU College of Pharmacy and president of the National Lipid Association, which funded this study.
“This issue is something physicians, pharmacists and patients all need to be more aware of,” Ito said. “There’s a lot we can do besides discontinue use of these valuable medications. You can change dosages, use drugs that don’t cause interactions, use different types of statins. Patients need to be proactive in understanding this issue and working with their health care providers to address it.”
Persons who have problems taking statins should discuss options with their physicians or pharmacists, Ito said, and not assume the drug has be to discontinued. A Medscape web site at http://reference.medscape.com/drug-interactionchecker also can help individuals learn more about possible interactions between statins and the full range of medications they may be taking.
Statins are usually well-tolerated, but in the recent survey, a muscle-related side effect was reported by 29 percent of participants. In former statin users, 62 percent of the people said that side effects, mostly muscle pain, were the reason they stopped taking the drugs.
There are many drugs that can interfere with statin metabolism, increase systemic exposure to the statin and raise the risk of this muscle pain, the researchers said in their report. This can include some common antibiotics, cardiovascular drugs, and others taken for treatment of cancer, mental health, HIV treatment and other conditions.
These interactions are not always adequately considered by physicians and pharmacists, however. One recent report found that as many as 20 percent of significant statin-drug interactions were missed in 64 pharmacies.
Besides drug interactions, statin side effects are also more common in women and associated with increasing age, history of cardiovascular disease, and some other conditions. Statin discontinuation has been associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and death.
About the OSU College of Pharmacy: The College of Pharmacy prepares students of today to be the pharmacy practitioners and pharmaceutical sciences researchers of tomorrow by contributing to improved health, advancing patient care and the discovery and understanding of medicines.
One in three adults ages 65 and older will fall each year. Use this podcast to learn how to talk to aging parents about senior living before an accident occurs.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three adults ages 65 and older fall each year. Of these falls, 20–30 percent result in debilitating injuries limiting seniors’ ability to live on their own. It is more important than ever for seniors and their adult children to plan for senior living accommodations—before an accident occurs.
Of course, the conversation about senior living can be emotional and taxing for aging parents. Seniors may view the change as a loss of independence, and it can be difficult to think about leaving their home and existing lifestyle to join a new community.
In a recent podcast from MySilverAge.com, Lisa Holland—regional director of quality improvement at be.group, a nonprofit provider of California senior living communities—offers expert tips to ease these challenges and strategies to help start the conversation. Holland explains how to approach the subject respectfully and sensitively, and how to offer the right support for each parent’s unique needs.
To hear all of Holland’s tips on talking to aging parents about senior living, including whom to include in the discussion and ways to prepare for potential responses, visit: www.mysilverage.com/thetalk.
MySilverAge is a website and online resource center, brought to you by be.group, that is designed to help seniors enjoy “what’s next.” MySilverAge brings together thought leaders on the subject of successful aging, leading intelligence on healthy aging and senior living, and expert tips and advice for creating the home, community and relationships in which seniors can thrive.
As one of California’s largest nonprofit providers of senior living communities, be.group is committed to creating communities and services that make the lives of older adults more fulfilling. be.group’s dedicated, well-trained staff is devoted to helping its residents and clients discover new ways to embrace life’s possibilities and new options for exploring their potential. Follow @begroupliving on Twitter.
Livliga dishware is a new solution to help these two generations eat right and stay healthy
Americans are living longer than ever, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, but the fight to stay healthy is just as challenging as it has been with past generations. Recent studies show that the Silent Generation, born from 1927 to 1945 and Baby Boomers, born from 1946 to 1964, collectively face three major nutritional challenges.
A Journal of the American Medical Association Internal Medicine study shows Baby Boomers have higher rates of hypertension, diabetes, obesity and high cholesterol when compared to their previous generation. The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations also shows the highest obesity rates are currently found in Baby Boomers.
For the Silent Generation, currently ages 68 to 85, the National Institute on Aging says its main challenge is related to lack of balanced nutrition and getting enough calories.
The NIA says this group has:
- decreased appetite
- trouble chewing food
- less socialization around food
- diminished sense of taste and smell
- medication interference with food enjoyment
- fixed incomes
One new solution is Livliga, a tool Baby Boomers and Silent Generation seniors can use to promote right-sized food portions to reach target weights as well as to guide intake of balanced nutritional meals. Created with an Advisory Committee including a cardiologist and certified nutritionist, Livliga offers easy, subtle cues to improve and control the food environment.
“Livliga is a solution for every stage of life,” says inventor, Sheila Kemper Dietrich. “It can be used by people who are under eating and need to be reminded to take in more calories or to help those who are struggling to shrink their waistlines. The guide to portion sizes combined with reminders of what comprises a balanced meal are the keys to better health for both groups.”
Livliga is Swedish for LIVELY, VIBRANT or VIVID, which is the company’s core philosophy. Kemper Dietrich’s vision was to create an attractive suite of place settings designed for a healthy lifestyle and suitable for entertaining family and friends in both formal and informal settings. The beautiful designs on the dishware offer elegant visual cues to guide appropriate and right-sized servings. The initial product launch was a 4-piece place setting in two patterns, including a dinner plate, salad/luncheon plate, bowl and mug. Livliga also offers a serving bowl, etched water and wine glasses.
For Baby Boomers or Silent Generation seniors with grandchildren, Kidliga can also be helpful to promote healthy habits for the entire family. Kidliga is whimsical, fun dishware for kids, accompanied by a health-oriented children’s storybook. Sammie & Sax in the Land of Quinoa: The Search for a Balanced Meal just won a Moonbeam Award in the Health Issues category and is a useful tool and solution to help families in the fight against childhood obesity.
Livliga products are specifically designed to help both adults and children address the “psychology of eating”. The rim sizes, color palette, and designs all combine to encourage slower eating, make portion sizes look larger, as well as make food more visually appealing.
A 4-piece Livliga place setting is available on the company website at www.LivligaHome.com at an introductory price of $49.95 (MSRP $59.95). All of the additional products and pricing can be easily found on the website as well. Kemper Dietrich says plans call for further product launches, including additional patterns and a set of LivSpoons that makes for easy, everyday measuring and serving of right-sized portions.
To purchase Livliga, visit the online store at www.LivligaHome.com. “Like” Livliga on Facebook at facebook.com/LivligaHome, follow on Twitter @LivligaHome and visit our blog at LivligaHome.blogspot.com. Watch our videos on YouTube.com/LivligaHome.
Agency Zero Public Relations
Seven Awards for People Over Age 60 Solving the World’s Toughest Social Problems
The Purpose Prize has become a “MacArthur genius award for people who develop a second career as social service entrepreneurs.” – The New York Times.
A veteran of the U.S. Navy organizes a network of volunteers across the country to teach disabled veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan how to combat stress — through fly-fishing.
A public relations executive helps wounded warriors find and renovate foreclosed homes – and transforms lives and neighborhoods in the process.
These are two of the seven winners of the 2013 Purpose Prize, awarded by Encore.org, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting people who translate decades of skill and experience into “second acts” that contribute to society’s greater good.
Now in its eighth year, The Purpose Prize is the nation’s only large-scale investment in people over 60 who are combining their passion and experience for the social good. Created in 2005 by Encore.org, the prize is aimed at those with the passion to make change and the wisdom to know how to do it, showcasing the value of experience and disproving the notion that innovation is solely the province of the young.
Two winners will receive $100,000 each and five winners will receive $25,000 each.
This year’s winners:
* Vicki Thomas, Purple Heart Homes, Weston, Ct.
Thomas rallies communities around wounded soldiers, providing them with adapted foreclosed homes that improve quality of life for veterans and whole communities alike. ($100,000 winner of The Purpose Prize for Future Promise, sponsored by Symetra)
* Ysabel Duron, Latinas Contra Cancer, San Jose, Ca.
Duron taps into her own experience as a cancer survivor to shine a spotlight on cancer for Latino communities across the United States. ($100,000)
* Edwin P. Nicholson, Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Inc., Port Tobacco, Md.
Nicholson mentors disabled veterans, healing emotional wounds through the power of relationships and the great outdoors. ($25,000)
* Carol Fennelly, Hope House, Washington, D.C.
Fennelly runs a unique summer camp behind bars that is transforming federal prisoners into involved parents. ($25,000)
* Elizabeth Huttinger, Projet Crevette, Pasadena, Ca.
Huttinger’s project is on a path to eradicate human schistosomiasis, a disease infecting millions of the world’s poorest. ($25,000)
* Reverend Violet Little, The WelcomeChurch, Philadelphia, Pa.
Little is redefining the concept of “church” as she pastors Philadelphia’s homeless in a church without walls. ($25,000)
* Barbara Young, National Domestic Workers Alliance, New York, NY
Young’s rise from immigrant nanny to passionate advocate gives her a powerful voice in the fight for domestic workers’ rights across the United States. ($25,000)
The Purpose Prize winners will be honored on December 5, 2013, at an awards ceremony in Sausalito, Ca. NBC’s Jane Pauley will emcee the event for hundreds of Encore leaders and the Purpose Prize winners.
Twenty-one judges – leaders in business, politics, journalism and the nonprofit sector – chose the seven winners from a pool of more than 1,000 nominees. Judges include Sherry Lansing, former CEO of Paramount; David Bornstein, author and New York Times columnist; Eric Liu, writer and founder of CitizenUniversity; and Sree Sreenivasan, Chief Digital Officer for the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
Funded by The Atlantic Philanthropies and the John Templeton Foundation, The Purpose Prize is a program of Encore.org, which aims to engage millions of boomers in encore careers combining personal meaning, continued income and social impact in the second half of life.
This year, Symetra is sponsoring the $100,000 Purpose Prize for Future Promise, which recognizes an individual whose approach for helping society has the potential to grow steadily over the next five years. The company plans to sponsor another Purpose Prize for Future Promise in 2014.
“While Purpose Prize winners are helping to solve a wide range of pressing social problems, they have one thing in common,” said Marc Freedman, CEO and founder of Encore.org and author of The Big Shift (PublicAffairs Books). “They – and millions of others in encore careers – are turning personal passions and decades of experience into invaluable contributions across sectors, continents and generations, often through entrepreneurship.”
Short summaries for all winners follow. Photos are attached. Longer bios and higher resolution photos are available.
Vicki Thomas, Purple Heart Homes, Weston, Ct.
Thomas, winner of this year’s Purpose Prize for Future Promise, sponsored by Symetra, rallies communities around wounded soldiers, providing them with adapted foreclosed homes that improve quality of life for veterans and whole communities alike. Following a 35-year-career as a fundraising and marketing dynamo, she became the director of communications at Purple Heart Homes in 2008 in an effort to provide greater services for veterans who have service-connected disabilities. In just three years, Thomas helped take the fledgling nonprofit to new heights. She has raised millions for Purple Heart Homes in financial contributions and material donations. Revenue shot up 600% in her first year with the startup. She’s developed an innovative program that matches veterans with foreclosed homes donated by banks, then raises the funds to renovate a home for the individual veteran’s needs. It’s a win-win for all generations—and communities too. It helps veterans to grow assets, towns to recoup lost taxes and neighborhoods that have struggled with foreclosures to stabilize.
Ysabel Duron, Latinas Contra Cancer, San Jose, Ca.
Duron is an award-winning journalist with more than 42 years in television broadcasting. She tapped into her own experience as a survivor of Hodgkin’s lymphoma to shine a spotlight on cancer for Latino communities across the United States. To focus on the plight of low-income Latinos fighting the disease, Duron founded Latinas Contra Cancer (Latinas Against Cancer), an organization committed to educating, supporting and providing essential services to low-income Spanish speakers often overlooked by the health care system. Latinas Contra Cancer has offered a range of programs that have taught more than 3,000 men, women and teens about the disease, resulting in more than 300 preventative cancer screenings. The group has provided psychological and social support to over 100 patients per year. However, the call to action Duron answered has had an impact far beyond the Bay Area. Her passionate commitment is helping Latino communities across the U.S. gain access to cancer support, information and treatment. Her great empathy for cancer patients has made her utterly clear on her bigger purpose in the second stage of life.
Edwin P. Nicholson, Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Inc., Port Tobacco, Md.
Nicholson mentors disabled veterans, healing the emotional wounds of battle through the power of relationships and the great outdoors. A cancer survivor and war veteran himself, Nicholson was impressed by the fortitude of disabled veterans at the Walter Reed military hospital, where he was treated for prostate cancer in 2005. It spurred him to found Project Healing Waters, a program dedicated to helping disabled soldiers and veterans recover from the trying aftermath of war through the sport of fly-fishing. One-on-one connections have been key to Project Healing Waters’ approach since the beginning. Nicholson knew there were fly-fishing groups and facilities all over the country. His innovation was to convince them to start, manage and lead fly-fishing instruction and outings with veterans through military and Veterans Administration facilities. The quiet bonds forged over fishing lines began to transform lives. Again and again Nicholson heard from family members who said their loved ones had returned from war withdrawn, angry, and difficult to be around. But after fly-fishing with Project Healing Waters, they’ve become happier, more open and engaged. Project Healing Waters works closely with VA Recreational and Occupational therapies to identify those who would most benefit from the program. Many are in wheelchairs or using prosthetics. A few are blind. Participants reflect of full spectrum of disabled veterans and include all ages, genders, ethnicities and disabilities. Nicholson says the impact “goes well beyond the mechanics of fly-fishing.”
Carol Fennelly, Hope House, Washington, D.C.
A lifelong social activist who ran homeless shelters in the District of Columbia for 17 years, Carol Fennelly abandoned her plans to retire in 1998 when she learned that D.C. inmates had been transferred to Youngstown, OH. One woman made 10-hour round-trip drives twice a week to visit her son. Moved to answer a social need, Fennelly thought about opening a hospitality house in Youngstown for family members visiting inmates. She soon learned that while 93% of the federal inmate population is male, in sheer numbers there are more programs for mothers in prison than there are for fathers. She decided she had what it took to change things. “I had spent years organizing, dealing with government, making change happen, and that emboldened me to think I could go into prisons and start all these radical programs,” Fennelly says. So she launched an encore career with Hope House, an innovative organization that helps prison inmates stay in regular contact with their children. In the past 14 years, Hope House has hosted 200 video teleconferences, 18,000 personalized book readings by fathers and 31 week-long summer camps, which allow kids to spend time with their fathers free of the usual restrictions that come with visitor hours and family chaperones. California recently decided to implement the Hope House model in its 33 state prisons. Prisons in Texas, Idaho and New Hampshire may follow. In 2013 Fennelly was honored at the White House as a Champion of Change.
Elizabeth Huttinger, Projet Crevette, Pasadena, Ca.
International public health expert Elizabeth Huttinger spotted a big idea in shrimp, and launched an encore career that could eradicate a disease infecting millions of the world’s poorest. Huttinger’s project – founded in 2006 – is targeting human schistosomiasis, an infectious parasite carried by river snails. Understanding that the population of prawns that eat those snails had precipitously declined, Huttinger, 63, has devoted her encore career to restoring the prawn population in the SenegalRiver Basin. Projet Crevette’s mission is multifaceted: the restoration of the prawn population diminishes the spread of schisto, provides new economic opportunities to afflicted communities and heals families infected by the disease. Today, Projet Crevette is a prawn-farming microenterprise, operated by locals at public watering holes. It has brought social innovation, new microbusinesses, environmental restoration and improved health to communities. Huttinger is confident Projet Crevette will meet its bold goal to fully restore the indigenous prawn population—and improve countless lives in the process.
Violet Little, The WelcomeChurch, Philadelphia, Pa.
Reverend Violet Little is redefining the concept of “church” as she pastors Philadelphia’s homeless in a church without walls. After 14 years as parish pastor trained in psychotherapy, Little left behind her traditional congregation to create a religious refuge for the homeless on the streets of the city, which became the “WelcomeChurch.” The church relies mostly on word of mouth, and services can pop up in a city park or on a sidewalk. No questions are asked, and everyone is welcome. The WelcomeChurch coordinates medical services through local universities, helps people get into rehab or jobs, and offers educational services to the public on the causes of homelessness. Little estimates 40 percent of her congregants have moved off the streets into permanent housing and the WelcomeChurch celebrates each and every one of them, many of whom stay connected with Little through their transition. Little’s congregation has grown to include hundreds of homeless as well as non-homeless volunteers in the EvangelicalLutheranChurch in America.
Barbara Young, National Domestic Workers Alliance, New York, NY
An immigrant from the West Indies who built a meaningful life on meager income, Young’s gritty rise from nanny to passionate advocate gives her a powerful voice in the fight for domestic workers’ rights across the United States. She’s encouraged thousands to stand up for their right to earn a living wage, and counsels and trains others to become leaders themselves. In 2004, Young began building a movement to legislate a Domestic Workers’ Bill of Rights in New YorkState, which would make overtime, paid time off and rest days mandatory. In 2009, when she heard then Governor David Patterson say on the radio that he’d sign the bill if it made it to his desk, she put on a full court press, becoming the engine behind passage of the law in 2010. The law is the first of its kind in the country, but Young is committed to making sure it isn’t the last. She’s now a key player in the NDWA’s expansion from 11 to 44 affiliated organizations with 15,000 members, up from 5,000 in 2007. Young’s passion for serving her community has only just begun.
Read More About Encore’s Purpose Prize at www.encore.org/prize.
Encore.org is a national nonprofit that promotes the idea that people in their second acts have the talent and experience to solve some of society’s greatest problems.
About The Atlantic Philanthropies
The Atlantic Philanthropies are dedicated to bringing about lasting changes in the lives of disadvantaged and vulnerable people. In keeping with the Giving While Living philosophy of founder Charles “Chuck” Feeney, The Atlantic Philanthropies believes in making large investments to capitalize on significant opportunities to solve urgent problems now, so they are less likely to become larger, more entrenched and more expensive challenges later. The Atlantic Philanthropies also seeks to encourage others of significant wealth to engage in major philanthropic pursuits in their lifetime.
About The John Templeton Foundation
The John Templeton Foundation serves as a philanthropic catalyst for discoveries relating to the Big Questions of human purpose and ultimate reality, supporting research on subjects ranging from complexity, evolution, and infinity to creativity, forgiveness, love, and free will. We encourage civil, informed dialogue among scientists, philosophers, and theologians and between such experts and the public at large, for the purposes of definitional clarity and new insights.
Symetra Financial Corporation (NYSE: SYA) is a diversified financial services company based in Bellevue, Wash. In business since 1957, Symetra provides employee benefits, annuities and life insurance through a national network of benefit consultants, financial institutions, and independent agents and advisors.
CONTACT: Sara Ying Rounsaville, firstname.lastname@example.org, 415-952-5121, or Russ Mitchell, email@example.com, 510-969-0801
The mental and physical benefits of animal companionship have been praised across the world, from seeing-eye dogs to therapy dogs to household pets. According to the US Pet Ownership and Demographics Sourcebook, there are approximately 70 million pet dogs and 74 million pet cats in the United States. Of this number, about 63 percent of pets are considered to be members of the family. Now, pet adoption companies are utilizing the health improvements to better the quality of life for senior citizens.
“The pairing of seniors with calm, manageable adult dogs and cats has yielded amazing vitality and unparalleled effects, the feeling of loneliness dissolves and a reason to be active arises,” affirms Will Post, CEO of Hound & Gatos Pet Food, whose mission is to provide the public with high-quality pet food options for dogs and cats. “The simple presence of animal companionship can provide amazing health benefits that truly lift a senior’s mental and physical state because they have someone to depend on and someone who depends on them.”
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that pets can reduce stress, lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, in addition to increasing social interaction and physical activity. Add unconditional love, purpose, and that special something to care for and nurture, and you have an elixir for senior citizens.
According to Pet Partners, seniors with pets experience fewer minor health issues when visiting their doctor, and overall better health and mental well-being. Pets are also praised for reducing loneliness and depression, two major factors that can lead to an unhealthy body and mind. Since dogs live in the present, their focus on ‘today’ tends to rub off on their owners, resulting in managing anxiety levels.
“These positive results of animal companionship for seniors is one more reason to encourage the ownership and nurturing of pets for the seniors of today. We are only beginning to document these facts determining the health benefits of pet ownership for the elderly, though animal lovers have always suspected it. Their contribution to a better quality of life being recognized can only lead to happier and healthier seniors, something we can all be excited about,” says Post. “The importance of love proves to be a major force in life no matter what age one might be.”
Research continues to show that pets help people of all ages enjoy a much fuller and rewarding life, and the mission of Hound & Gatos Pet Food Corporation is to try to create cat and dog formulas that can ultimately improve our beloved pet’s vitality and longevity. Dubbed as the original Paleolithic pet food company, their recipes are 100 percent protein and zero percent plant protein, with the number-one ingredient being meat. To learn more about Hound & Gatos, including where to buy products, visit their site at: www.houndgatos.com.
About Hound & Gatos Pet Foods Corporation
Hound & Gatos Pet Foods Corporation is based in New York. Their mission is to provide the public with high-quality pet food options for dogs and cats. Their line of pet foods focus on quality ingredients that provide maximum nutrition, and avoid all bi-products and other ingredients that would generally be unnatural to a pet’s diet. For more information on Hound & Gatos visit the site at www.houndgatos.com.
# # #
Source: American Veterinary Medical Assocation. US Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook.https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/Statistics/Pages/Market-research-statistics-US-Pet-Ownership-Demographics-Sourcebook.aspx
Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Health Benefits of Pets.http://www.cdc.gov/healthypets/health_benefits.htm
Pet Partners. Health Benefits of Animals for Seniors. http://www.petpartners.org/page.aspx?pid=312
Australian researchers find a 40 percent lower mortality risk among patients who had their vision corrected through the procedure
SAN FRANCISCO – Sept. 4, 2013 – People with cataract-related vision loss who have had cataract surgery to improve their sight are living longer than those with visual impairment who chose not to have the procedure, according to an Australian cohort study published this month in Ophthalmology, the journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology. After comparing the two groups, the researchers found a 40 percent lower long-term mortality risk in those who had the surgery.
The research is drawn from data gathered in the Blue Mountains Eye Study, a population-based cohort study of vision and common eye diseases in an older Australian population. A total of 354 persons aged 49 years and older and diagnosed with cataract-related vision impairment – some of whom had undergone surgery and others who had not – were assessed between 1992 and 2007. Adjustments were made for age and gender as well as a number of mortality risk factors, including hypertension, diabetes, smoking, cardiovascular disease, body mass index and measures of frailty and comorbid disease. Follow-up visits took place after five and ten years since the baseline exam.
Previous research had indicated that older persons with visual impairment were likely to have greater mortality risk than their age peers with normal vision, and that cataract surgery might reduce this risk. These studies – unlike the Blue Mountains Eye Study – compared people who had undergone cataract surgery with those in the general population or with those who had not had cataract surgery, and did not link vision status to the surgical status.
“Our finding complements the previously documented associations between visual impairment and increased mortality among older persons,” said Jie Jin Wang, Ph.D., of the Westmead Millennium Institute and one of lead researchers of the study. “It suggests to ophthalmologists that correcting cataract patients’ visual impairment in their daily practice results in improved outcomes beyond that of the eye and vision, and has important impacts on general health.”
The association between correction of cataract-related visual impairment and reduced mortality risk is not clearly understood, but plausible factors may include improvements in physical and emotional well-being, optimism, greater confidence associated with independent living after vision improvement, as well as greater ability to comply with prescription medications.
Dr. Wang noted one limitation of the study is that participants with cataract-related visual impairment who did not have cataract surgery could have had other health problems that prevented them from undergoing surgery, and that these other health problems could partly explain the poorer survival among non-surgical participants. This issue is addressed by the researchers in a subsequent study.
Caused by the clouding of the lens, cataract is a leading cause of treatable visual impairment that will affect more than half of all Americans by the time they are 80 years old. Surgical removal of the opaque lens with an artificial lens implanted is a successful procedure of cataract treatment. If completing everyday tasks is difficult, cataract surgery should be discussed with an ophthalmologist − a medical doctor specializing in the diagnosis, medical and surgical treatment of eye diseases and conditions.
Seniors who are seeking eye care but are concerned about cost may qualify for EyeCare America, a public service program of the Foundation of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, which offers eye exams and care at no out-of-pocket cost to qualifying seniors age 65 and older. Learn more at www.eyecareamerica.org. For more information on cataracts and other eye health information, visit www.geteyesmart.org.
About the American Academy of Ophthalmology
The American Academy of Ophthalmology, headquartered in San Francisco, is the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons — Eye M.D.s — with more than 32,000 members worldwide. Eye health care is provided by the three “O’s” – ophthalmologists, optometrists, and opticians. It is the ophthalmologist, or Eye M.D., who has the education and training to treat it all: eye diseases, infections and injuries, and perform eye surgery. For more information, visit www.aao.org. The Academy’s EyeSmart® program educates the public about the importance of eye health and empowers them to preserve healthy vision. EyeSmart provides the most trusted and medically accurate information about eye diseases, conditions and injuries. OjosSanos™ is the Spanish-language version of the program. Visit www.geteyesmart.org or www.ojossanos.org to learn more.
Ophthalmology, the official journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, publishes original, peer-reviewed, clinically applicable research. Topics include the results of clinical trials, new diagnostic and surgical techniques, treatment methods technology assessments, translational science reviews and editorials.
Alternative and Complementary treatments are finally getting some long overdue recognition. Senior citizens have been among the groups of people lobbying for non-traditional medical treatment of disease. One of those non-traditional methodologies is the use of herbal medicine. Among the herbs getting appropriate accolades these days is Cayenne.
Most of us think of it as a hot pepper, added to soup and sauces for the tangy taste it offers. But Cayenne has healing power that is now being studied in a variety of medical centers. Aryuvedic medicine has known of its curative power for centuries. Folklore describes its healing effects on heart attacks, open wounds, pain, hemorrhaging and digestion. And now medical science is adding its official stamp on the benefits of the herb with studies focusing on the therapeutic benefit of this hot peppe.
The active component of Cayenne is capsaicin. Do an Internet search on that word alone, and you will be amazed at the results. Clinical studies on Cayenne/capsaicin have found many medicinal benefits including antioxidant activity, cytotoxic action, inhibit some cancer cell growth, alleviate oral mucositis pain, treating psoriasis and pruritus, and other benefits.
The great thing about Cayenne is its nutritional value as well as medicinal. This herb is used extensively in all kinds of culinary dishes. Seniors around the globe are beginning to add this herb to many dishes that do not call for it. The addition creates a delight for most palates! When used in combination with other herbs, it acts as a catalyst that increases the effectiveness of other herbs used in the same dishes.
The nutritional value of Cayenne comes from its very high source of Vitamins A and C, the complete B complexes, and its high levels of organic calcium and potassium, which is one of the reasons it is good for the heart.
Readers are encouraged to check further on the validity of information available on the Internet. Bibliographies offer a comprehensive resource on reports of studies. Readers are always encouraged to read the original source to avoid possible misrepresentation, even that offered in good faith. As always, this article is not intended to offer medical advice or to replace the need for all readers to consult their primary care physicians and specialists about their individual medical needs.
Article provided by Sharon Shaw Elrod. Senior Citizen Journal, Your Partner in Productive Aging, provides current and relevant information on topics of interest to seniors. Please visit my web site at http://www.seniorcitizenjournal.com/.
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Actor Lee Majors Joins Flu + You Campaign to Raise Awareness of Risks of Flu for People 65 and Older
National Council on Aging Launches Second Year of Education Program for Older Adults and Those Who Care for Them Aimed at Helping to Protect More Older Adults from the Flu
Actor Lee Majors, best known for his iconic roles on The Big Valley, The Fall Guy, and The Six Million Dollar Man, is joining the National Council on Aging (NCOA) Flu + You program to help protect older adults from influenza (commonly known as “the flu”). Flu + You aims to inform adults 65 and older, their caregivers, and those who care about them, about the dangers of the flu, the importance of annual vaccination, and available vaccine options.
As a part of his involvement in the Flu + You campaign, Majors will appear in a public service announcement (PSA) that follows him as he embarks on an important and action-packed mission: learning about his vaccine options and getting vaccinated against the flu. The PSA will educate the public about the increased risk of flu in adults 65 years of age and older and the importance of knowing your vaccine options and getting a flu vaccine, even for tough guys like Majors.
Every year in the United States, roughly nine out of 10 flu-related deaths and more than six out of 10 flu-related hospitalizations occur in people 65 and older. Older adults are at a greater risk for flu due, in part, to the weakening of the immune system that typically occurs with age. This means that no matter how healthy or youthful we feel, as we age we become more vulnerable to the flu and its related complications.
“The CDC recommends an annual flu vaccine as the single best way to protect yourself from the flu, yet a third of people 65 and older still don’t get vaccinated,” said Richard Birkel, PhD, MPA, NCOA Senior Vice President for Healthy Aging and Director of NCOA’s Self-Management Alliance. “As NCOA continues to educate older adults about the flu and the potential severity of the illness, we hope to encourage more people to protect themselves and their loved ones by getting an annual flu shot.”
The flu vaccine offers the best defense to protect against the flu, and adults 65 years of age and older have several vaccine options. In addition to the traditional flu vaccine (which helps protect against three strains of the flu virus), there is also a quadrivalent vaccine (which helps protect against four strains), and a higher dose vaccine that was designed specifically for adults 65 and older. By improving the production of antibodies in older patients, the higher dose vaccine can provide a stronger immune response to the flu than traditional vaccines. All flu vaccines are covered as a Medicare Part B benefit, which means there is no copay for Medicare beneficiaries 65 years of age and older.
“I get the flu shot every year and encourage my peers to do the same – it’s a simple step you can take to protect yourself from the flu,” says actor Lee Majors. “I urge everyone 65 years of age and older to talk to their health care provider about their vaccine options this flu season.”
The flu can make existing health conditions worse, and it is especially dangerous for people with lung disease, heart disease, diabetes, kidney disease, and cancer—conditions that commonly affect older adults. Nationwide, 86 percent of adults 65 years of age and older have at least one chronic health condition and approximately 66 percent of Medicare beneficiaries have two or more chronic conditions, putting them at increased risk of the flu and flu-related complications, which can be severe and include hospitalization and even death.
For more facts about flu, and to order free educational materials, including a brochure and fact sheet, visit www.ncoa.org/Flu.
About Flu + You
Flu + You is a national public education initiative, from the National Council on Aging with support from Sanofi Pasteur, to educate adults 65 years and older about the dangers of the influenza virus, the importance of annual vaccination, and available vaccine options. Older adults and their caregivers can learn more on the Flu + You website, www.ncoa.org/Flu, which features a public service announcement with Lee Majors and facts about the flu. Also available on the website is a calendar of Flu + You events that will be held in 12 cities throughout the United States in September and October. At the events, older adults will have the opportunity to learn more about their risks for flu and available vaccine options, as well as talk to a health care provider and receive a flu vaccination.
The National Council on Aging is a nonprofit service and advocacy organization headquartered in Washington, DC. NCOA is a national voice for millions of older adults—especially those who are vulnerable and disadvantaged—and the community organizations that serve them. It brings together nonprofit organizations, businesses, and government to develop creative solutions that improve the lives of all older adults. NCOA works with thousands of organizations across the country to help seniors find jobs and benefits, improve their health, live independently, and remain active in their communities. For more information, please visit:
www.NCOA.org | www.facebook.com/NCOAging | www.twitter.com/NCOAging
CONTACT: Dana Kinker, (212) 301-7181, firstname.lastname@example.org
Treat them like a person, not a patient
New living systems developmental model of care shifts the focus of treating Alzheimer’s disease and other debilitating illnesses
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. – Donald H. Ford observed that advanced Alzheimer’s patients, like his mother-in-law, are typically bored and lonely, and often depressed, frightened or angry. His professional knowledge convinced him it didn’t have to be that way. When Alzheimer’s struck his wife, he created a scientifically based alternative form of Alzheimer’s care that enabled her to still have a satisfying life.
Ford shares this revolutionary plan he used with his wife, Carol in the new book Carol’s Alzheimer’s Journey: Treat Them Like a Person, Not a Patient. He is an experienced psychology professional and developed a living systems developmental model for care that incorporates an individual’s humanity. It helps patients live a meaningful and pleasurable life, despite their limitations. Carol’s Alzheimer’s Journey is a guide for caregivers of senior citizens with serious limitations to improve their care receivers’ quality of life.
“Traditional medical model caregiving focuses on what’s wrong with a person and tries to fix it. However, when what is wrong can’t be fixed, the caregiver can’t succeed and that’s discouraging,” Ford says. “In Our developmental model of care, the focus is on what the person can still do and on designing experiences from which they get satisfaction.”
As people continue to gain more awareness of Alzheimer’s disease and other seriously debilitating diseases, plans like the model in Carol’s Alzheimer’s Journey become more relevant. Based on his professional research, Ford believes that a person always functions as an integrated unit, so a model was needed that combined the biological, psychological, behavioral, social and contextual aspects of a person’s patterns of behavior when planning for elder care. Carol’s Alzheimer’s Journey asks society to adopt the view that it is not enough to focus on keeping senior citizens alive and “warehousing them” until they die.
Ford’s plan in Carol’s Alzheimer’s Journey is a person-centered quality of care focus. It replaces the traditional medical emphasis on what is wrong with the person with a positive emphasis on using their remaining capabilities to create a satisfying life, despite limitations.
Carol’s Alzheimer’s Journey: Treat Them Like a Person, Not a Patient
By Donald H. Ford
ISBN: 978-1-3008-0321-8 (sc); 978-1-3009-9178-6 (e)
Approximately 564 pages
Available at www.LuLu.com, www.amazon.com and www.barnesandnoble.com.
About the author
Donald H. Ford earned a Bachelor of Science, Master of Science and doctorate degrees in mathematics and psychology from KansasState and PennsylvaniaStateUniversities. He spent the first 10 years of his career creating a new kind of psychological and developmental services program at PennState for students and their families. Then PennState asked him to create a new kind of college called Health and Human Development. It stimulated other universities to develop similar colleges. After 10 years as Dean, he resigned and returned to his first love of teaching, scholarly and professional work. He published seven books about psychotherapy and human development.
Healthy eating, whether as a child or senior citizen is a vital part of a healthy and active lifestyle. Your nutritional needs are pretty much the same at 40, 50, 60 and beyond as they were when you were younger–with some minor variations. As we grow older, our bodies becomes less forgiving, and we will have to make more of an effort to eat well and stay fit.
Here are 5 Dietary Requirements for Senior Citizens:
Studies of the elderly indicate that current weight, rather than age, determined energy intake in men and women. The study suggests that changes in lifestyle, not age, resulted in the dietary changes seen in the healthy elderly survey. As you mature, your body will loose muscle mass, decreasing your metabolic rate, which in turn burns fewer calories at a slower rate. A great way to maintain control of your maturing body is to exercise regularly and eat healthy meals in moderation.
2. Eat More Fiber:
Maintaining a regular cycle of all systems in our bodies is very important. Fiber helps maintain regularity to prevent constipation and gastrointestinal diseases like divertculosis (pouches that cause spasm or cramping in the large intestines). You may also want to be extremely selective in your diet and not include gaseous foods.
3. Eat More Calcium:
Around 40 years old, our bones start to lose more minerals quicker than it can replace them. For women, menopause causes a drop in estrogen levels, estrogen helps bones maintain calcium. Menopause is responsible for a greater loss of calcium than in men. You should discuss with your physician a dietary supplement to ensure you are properly maintaining your body.
Water is essential from birth throughout life. It is critical to health-and is chronically overlooked. Second only to air in its steady and relentless necessity, H2O carries nutrients to cells; aids digestion by contributing to stomach secretions; flushes bodily wastes and reduces risk of kidney stones by diluting salts in the urine; ensures healthy function of moisture-rich organs (skin, eyes, mouth, nose); lubricates and cushions joints; regulates body temperature; and protects against heat exhaustion through perspiration. And the list goes on and on. Everybody should consume the minimum eight glasses of water daily to maintain our youthful vigor and pep.
5. Avoid Foods With Too Much Sugar:
Too much sugar causes a number of problems- it suppresses the immune system, weakens eyesight, contributes to obesity and diabetes, causes constipation, leads to all different types of cancers, and the list goes on and on about the effects of sugar intake. Young and old should never binge on sugar.
Eating well can make us feel a lot better. It gives us more energy – and it can actually help slow down the aging process!
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ALZHEIMER’S SET TO MOVE FROM THE MOST DAUNTING GLOBAL HEALTH CRISIS TO THE 21ST CENTURY’S FISCAL NIGHTMARE
OECD and the Global Coalition on Aging Convene at Harris Manchester College, Oxford University to Shape New Approaches for Solutions
Oxford, UK (26 June 2013) – The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Harris Manchester College, Oxford University and Global Coalition on Aging (GCOA) concluded on Friday 21 June, an “Expert Consultation on Unlocking Global Collaboration to Accelerate Innovation for Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia.” Aimed at providing input to the OECD action agenda for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, the Consultation brought together the highest level of global experts across health, economics, public policy, business, biotechnology and beyond.
Its timing is aligned with UK Prime Minister David Cameron’s recent recognition that dementia is fast becoming the biggest pressure on care systems around the world. “That’s why we’re using our G8 to bring together health ministers, clinical researchers and healthcare companies,” he said. “If the brightest minds are working together on this then we’ve got a greater chance of improving treatments and finding scientific breakthroughs. I’ve said before that we need an all-out fight-back against dementia that cuts across society. Now we need to cut across borders and spearhead an international approach that could really make a difference.”
The objectives of the Consultation included:
- Providing a space for country experts, policy makers, and scientific, medical and academic experts to share views on the main scientific, technological and policy challenges Alzheimer’s and dementia raise in the context of creating a pathway for aging populations to be sources of economic growth in the 21st century; and
- Creating an opportunity for multidisciplinary exchange on a collective action plan that maps the way forward.
“The impact of Alzheimer’s and dementia on individuals, families, health systems and national economies as populations age will become truly crippling, and no one nation or research organization can solve this global epidemic alone.” said Michael Hodin, Executive Director of GCOA. “It requires global understanding, sharing and collaboration, and this Consultation was a critical step in our ongoing fight against Alzheimer’s – a fight we must win if we are truly to unlock our aging populations as new sources of economic growth.”
Alzheimer’s afflicts one in eight over 65 and one-half of all those over 85, and the economic, social and personal costs will only increase with age-related demographic change. In 2010, the global cost of Alzheimer’s and dementias equalled 1 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP), or $604 billion. The prevalence and cost, combined with the stigma, which prevents recognition of symptoms and subsequent treatments, signal an urgent call to action.
“Traditional strategies around healthcare services and investments in research are not enough to address the growing worldwide onslaught of Alzheimer’s and dementias,” said Marc Wortmann, Executive Director of Alzheimer’s Disease International.
“The global scale of the pending healthcare-economic crisis mandates a bold forward looking action plan to harmonize a multi-nation attack on the problem,” noted Zaven Khachaturian, recognized at the meeting as the ‘Chief Architect’ of Alzheimer & Brain Aging research in the United States, now the President of the Campaign to Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease by 2020. He indicated the urgent need for a “multinational strategic goal for reducing the prevalence of Alzheimer’s and other chronic brain disorders by 50 percent within a decade” – thus urging the OECD to “identify the framework conditions to accelerate multi-national collaborative R & D.”
George Vradenburg, Chairman of USAgainstAlzheimer’s and convener of the Global CEO Initiative on Alzheimer’s, called for new attention, resources, commitment and collaboration to defeat Alzheimer’s disease. In his keynote speech, coined “The Oxford Accord,” he called for G8 leadership equivalent to the G8 Summit that created the HIV/AIDS Global Fund.
Consultation experts presented their views for proactive public policy and an OECD role in supporting actions to : promote broad-based partnerships; identify incentives, frameworks and infrastructures for enhanced international data sharing; leverage big data as strategies to advance our understanding of Alzheimer’s disease, improve care, promote global exchange of good practice and move toward cure and even prevention.
The Consultation was borne out of the September 2012 OECD workshop, “Anticipating the Special Needs of the 21st Century Silver Economy: From Smart Technologies to Services Innovation,” co-hosted by the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, OECD and Waseda University, with the support of the Japanese government. The workshop concluded that innovation was needed to meet the challenges and opportunities of global demographic change and mitigate the health, social and economic impacts of aging.
The Consultation was held on 20-21 June, 2013 at The Harris Manchester College (HMC), Oxford University in collaboration with the OECD.
For more information see OECD’s website: oe.cd/innovating-against-alzheimers.
ABOUT THE GLOBAL COALITION ON AGING
The Global Coalition on Aging (GCOA) aims to reshape how global leaders approach and prepare for the 21st century’s profound shift in population aging. GCOA uniquely brings together global corporations across industry sectors with common strategic interests in aging populations, a comprehensive and systemic understanding of aging, and an optimistic view of its impact. Through research, public policy analysis, advocacy and communication, GCOA is advancing innovative solutions and working to ensure global aging is a path for fiscally sustainable economic growth, social value creation and wealth enhancement. For more information, visitwww.globalcoalitiononaging.com.
Ophthalmologists Warn that Fireworks-Related Injuries Can Cause Permanent Vision Loss
American Academy of Ophthalmology and Nevada Academy of Ophthalmology urge parents to closely supervise children when around fireworks
LAS VEGAS – June 26, 2013 – As the Fourth of July holiday approaches and Americans make plans to celebrate the stars and stripes with a little red glare from celebratory rockets, the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the Nevada Academy of Ophthalmology urge the public to take important steps to prevent fireworks-related eye injuries. The academies ask parents and other adults to be especially cautious when children are in the presence of fireworks.
Of the more than 9,000 fireworks injuries that occur in the United States each year, [I]approximately 45 percent are sustained by children age 15 and under.[II] Eyes are among the most injured body parts,[III] and one in six fireworks-related eye injuries results in permanent vision loss or blindness.[IV]
All fireworks are dangerous if not properly handled; however, sparklers cause the most injury and are particularly dangerous since many children handle them on their own. Sparklers typically burn at 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit. That temperature is nearly 1,000 degrees hotter than the boiling point of water, double the heat required to burn wood, hot enough to melt glass and cause third-degree burns to the skin.[V] Out-of-control bottle rockets also cause some of the most serious eye injuries, including corneal abrasions, traumatic cataract, retinal detachment, optic nerve damage and rupture of the eyeball – all of which can lead to potential blindness.
Both Academies advise the public that the best way to avoid potentially blinding injuries is to attend a professional public fireworks display instead of using consumer fireworks. For those who still decide to use legal consumer fireworks, the Academy recommends they follow these safety tips to prevent eye injuries:
- Never handle fireworks without protective eyewear and ensure that all bystanders are also wearing eye protection.
- Never let young children play with fireworks of any type. If older children are permitted to handle fireworks, ensure they are closely supervised by an adult and wear protective eyewear.
- Clear the area of flammable materials and view fireworks from at least 500 feet away.
- Leave the lighting of professional-grade fireworks to trained pyrotechnicians.
For those who attend professional fireworks displays and/or live in communities surrounding the shows:
- Respect safety barriers at fireworks shows.
- Do not touch unexploded display (show) fireworks; instead, immediately contact local fire or police departments to help.
“It’s vital that the public take seriously the dangers of using consumer fireworks. If mishandled, devastating injuries can occur – particularly to the eyes,” said Adam J. Rovit, M.D., president of the Nevada Academy of Ophthalmology. “We urge parents and adults to be on high alert about these risks, especially if children are in the presence of fireworks, and take these safety measures to reduce the risk of eye injury.”
The Academy and the Nevada Academy of Ophthalmology believe these tips can help to ensure safe Independence Day observances for everyone. If, however, a fireworks-related eye injury occurs, call 911 and seek medical help immediately. These injuries typically need advanced care by an ophthalmologist, a medical doctor who specializes in the diagnosis, medical and surgical treatment of eye diseases and conditions.
For more fireworks safety tips and additional information on how to maintain healthy vision, visit www.geteyesmart.org.
About the Nevada Academy of Ophthalmology
The mission of the Nevada Academy of Ophthalmology is to promote and advance the science and art of medical eye care. The Nevada Academy of Ophthalmology’s members are dedicated to treating and preventing eye diseases for all patients. Learn more at Nevada Academy of Ophthalmology.
About the American Academy of Ophthalmology
The American Academy of Ophthalmology, headquartered in San Francisco, is the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons – Eye M.D.s – with more than 32,000 members worldwide. Eye health care is provided by the three “O’s” – ophthalmologists, optometrists, and opticians. It is the ophthalmologist, or Eye M.D., who can treat it all: eye diseases, infections and injuries, and perform eye surgery. For more information, visit www.aao.org.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology’s EyeSmart® program educates the public about the importance of eye health and empowers them to preserve their healthy vision. EyeSmart provides the most trustworthy and medically accurate information about eye diseases, conditions and injuries. OjosSanos™ is the Spanish-language version of the program. Visit www.geteyesmart.org or www.ojossanos.orgto learn more.
Headed to the Beach? Don’t Let Your Feet Ruin Your Vacation
CHICAGO—July 2, 2013 As millions of Americans hit the beach this summer, the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons offers these foot safety tips:
- Wear shoes to protect your feet from puncture wounds and cuts. Sea shells, broken glass and other sharp objects when stepped on can ruin your day at the beach. Avoid the water if your skin gets cut – bacteria in oceans and lakes can cause infection. If you do suffer from a puncture wound, have it treated by a foot and ankle surgeon within 24 hours to avoid complications.
- Feet get sunburned, too. Rare but deadly skin cancers, such as melanoma, can occur on the foot. Prevent skin cancer on your feet by lathering up with sunscreen. Don’t forget to apply to both the tops and bottoms of your feet!
- Wear shoes to protect your soles from getting burned as you walk on blistering-hot sand, sidewalks and pavement. Take extra precaution if you have diabetes.
- Be careful with your footing while playing beach sports such as Frisbee or volleyball – walking, jogging and playing sports on soft, uneven surfaces frequently leads to arch pain, heel pain, ankle sprains and other injuries. It’s best to wear supportive shoes while playing beach sports. If injuries occur, use rest, ice, compression and elevation to ease pain and swelling. Any injury that does not resolve within a few days should be examined by a foot and ankle surgeon.
- Remember jellyfish stings can still occur even if it’s washed up on the beach. Remove any tentacles that may stick to the foot or ankle, and protect your hands. Vinegar, meat tenderizer or baking soda reduce pain and swelling. Most jellyfish stings heal within days, but if they don’t, see a doctor.
- Diabetes Risks: People who have diabetes face serious foot safety risks at the beach. The disease causes poor blood circulation and numbness in the feet. A person with diabetes may not feel pain from a cut, puncture wound or burn. Any type of skin break on a diabetic foot has the potential to get infected and ulcerate if it isn’t noticed right away. People with diabetes should always wear shoes to the beach, and remove them regularly to check for foreign objects like sand and shells that can cause sores, ulcers and infections.
For more information on foot and ankle health, visit the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeon’s patient education page at FootHealthFacts.org.
The American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons is a professional society of more than 6,800 foot and ankle surgeons. Founded in 1942, the College’s mission is to promote research and provide continuing education for the foot and ankle surgical specialty, and to educate the general public on foot health and conditions of the foot and ankle through its consumer website, http://FootHealthFacts.org.
June 5, 2013 by Leigh St John
· Comments Off on Boston Elder Care Expert A. Michael Bloom Shares Coping Strategies to Support Accidental Caregivers Tending to Ailing Moms and Dads
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Boston Elder Care Expert A. Michael Bloom Shares Coping Strategies to Support Accidental Caregivers Tending to Ailing Moms and Dads
BOSTON, May 2, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Mother’s and Father’s Day celebrations are approaching, yet millions of adult children care for parents year round while on the brink of burnout. Catapulted into the accidental caregiver role without warning, stressed-out kids are doing their best to hold life together when everything seems to be falling apart.
Boston Elder Care Expert A. Michael Bloom issues a timely warning. “You must seek support as a caregiver. The life you save may be your own.”
Bloom offers practical coping strategies to help family caregivers recharge their energy and avoid burnout during a free monthly Caregiving Power Hour. During these tele-sessions, caregivers get tactical solutions to get through the week ahead. Bloom wants to inspire and train caregivers to provide quality support for their loved ones while fully living their own lives.
“It’s coaching, community, and caring in the gift of an hour of sacred time that can really make a difference,” Bloom says.
Bloom knows the stressful caregiving journey well. He served as the primary, live-in caregiver for his parents during their final years. His father passed away in 2009 and, after a courageous battle with cancer, Bloom’s mother passed away in his loving arms on Mother’s Day 2012.
“Caregivers put the well-being of loved ones first which can mean putting their own needs and plans on the back burner. The regret for career or life enhancing opportunities not taken can be a bitter pill to swallow,” Bloom says.
He honors the legacy of his parents by sharing key steps along the roadmap to caregiving without regret.
- Release Crisis Mode. Stop being a victim to circumstances so you feel stronger and become laser-focused to meet your family’s needs. Supporting loved ones through medical challenges is overwhelming and scary. When you become aware that feeling like a victim or in a state of crisis is a mindset, you can successfully shift back into taking control and positive action.
- Overcome Conflict. Communicate and cope with calm and clarity. Otherwise, you will crash while riding the emotional roller coaster associated with disability or disease. Mastering your own trigger points for anger and frustration will lead you to deal effectively with the most challenging people and circumstances in your life.
- Achieve Buy-In. Motivate others to contribute based upon their individual abilities, preferences, and talents so your loved one receives the most satisfying support possible. Giving others choices for how they can serve will foster their desire to gladly help on a regular basis.
- Deliver Greatness and Compassion in Equal Doses. Become the inspiring caregiver that people cheer for and gladly support in meaningful ways. Let your compassion shine through in all actions as you support your loved one. Devote equal time for self-care so you have the energy to let your best shine through even during tough times.
- Magnetize and Motivate Talent. Create an atmosphere that attracts and retains the best people to join your loved one’s care team and experience brilliant performance. Stay positive and open to the opinions of others so you can facilitate options for the best care and support.
- Access Intuition. Trust your instincts and let your care and dedication guide your decisions. Share any concerns and questions with key support professionals. It is better to explore a concern that proves to be okay rather than ignore something that could be life threatening.
- Put Chocolate in Your Pill Box. Find ways to fuel your soul so you can thrive during the caregiver journey and develop the passion and purpose for your life beyond caregiving. Dose yourself regularly to avoid burnout while creating enduring satisfaction and success.
About Certified Professional Coach and Energy Leadership™ Master Practitioner A. Michael Bloom
Since 2011, A. Michael Bloom has revitalized the careers of hundreds of family and professional caregivers with practical, tactical soul-saving coping strategies that support them in saving lives – including their own. An in-demand New England speaker, workshop leader, and coach, Bloom has influenced hundreds of caregivers to follow a roadmap to avoid burnout and recharge their caregiving energy. The author of the forthcoming book, The Accidental Caregivers Survival Guide: Your Roadmap to Caregiving Without Regret, Bloom welcomes media interviews, speaking engagements, and the opportunity to inspire caregivers around the world via his monthly Caregiving Power Hours. Learn more at http://www.bloomforcoach.com/powerhour/.
Water, Water everywhere but not a drop to drink! That was how Senior Citizens felt some years ago when the Health Insurance companies were selective to cater to them. With better medical conditions, people are able to live longer and healthier. However, age does bring some health related issues that needs to be taken care of.
There was a time when people after 50 years of age were generally not considered Insurable or were considered high risk. So, if anyone wanted to get health Insurance, the policy was either denied or was issued with various exclusions on Pre-existing diseases.
With the emergence of various Insurance companies, the Insurance segment for Senior citizens has also opened up. It is a boon for them to be able to plan and take their health in their own hands. The Insurance companies have started considering senior citizens as a potential market and address their need for a Health Insurance product. Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) has also taken various steps to boost the inclusion of senior citizens in the health insurance sector.
There are some health insurers which cover the senior citizens with no cap on the entry age, though IRDA’s directive is to keep at least 65 years as the maximum entry age.
The Health Insurance segment is at nascent stage and hence arbitrary at present/dichotomous in nature. Every individual has to undergo medical tests so as to be considered for health insurance. The reimbursement for the medical tests varies from insurer to insurer. Now, all insurers would reimburse 50% of the cost of the tests if they issue a health policy to the customer. However, there still are some companies in the market that cover a senior citizen without medical tests up to a certain age and covers pre-existing ailments from first year itself.
The Insurance companies would have to include all these clauses in the offer document and explain to the customer what it means to them. With IRDA bringing more transparency, consistency and accountability in the sector, the customers would have more options to choose from and a better product to meet their needs.
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There aren’t too many seniors-only gyms around at the moment, however finding a local one that caters to your needs isn’t impossible.
At your local gym try asking the following questions to see whether you might join:
Does any of your staff have senior-fitness certifications?
Several of the governing bodies that certify personal trainers offer training in senior fitness, and you want to have access to a trainer who has taken advantage of these educational opportunities.
In many countries the governing bodies which certify personal trainers are beginning to offer specialist training certificates for those trainers which undertake the appropriate courses and examinations. Finding a gym with one of these certified trainers is a plus!
Also these specialist trainers will be able to tailor an exercise program that suits your needs and what the gym’s is currently offering.
Does the gym offer any senior citizen fitness classes?
There can be a variety of classes offered by your local gym which can cater to your needs. Having classes in the late morning and afternoons when it’s quieter maybe what you’re looking for? The gym could even offer Yoga, Pilates of even Marathon training group classes.
Do check to see if the gym offers classes and equipment suited to those with arthritis, cardiovascular diseases or any other ailments you may have. There could even be classes that offer low impact workouts or even chair aerobics modified for seniors that you might be interested in.
Do you offer senior citizen discounts?
Senior Citizens get nice discounts on public transport, at the cinema, even at the grocery store, so why not at the gym? Don’t be too shy about asking for discounts – as in life, if you don’t ask you’ll never know!
Is there a fitness assessment before starting to use the machines?
Sure the gym is a great habit to get into but before starting do ensure you have a complete medical assessment by you own physician. You wouldn’t try to drive a car before knowing what all the pedals and levers were for – it’s the same thing with the equipment in the gym. Check to see if the gym you are thinking of joining has a trainer on hand that is familiar with how to teach you to use the machines and activities that are safe for seniors.
After deciding which of the gyms to join remember the following safety tips when getting started on your brand new routine:
- Start slowly and gently if you’ve not done much exercise in a while.
- Breathe as you’ve been instructed for the specific machine – holding your breath isn’t good.
- Wear good fitting shoes and use all of the recommended safety equipment.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Warm up and cool down to protect your muscles from strain as taught by the trainer.
If you experience any unusual pain or a shortness of breath whilst you exercise, stop and get checked by your physician so that you can continue to enjoy the benefits of exercising.
As well as providing advice to seniors I’ve also launched my first website at http://www.loftconversionsscotland.com to help those interested in expanding their living space.
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I am well aware that teenagers often think that people over thirty don’t know anything. They are partially right—many of us don’t know much about things that interest teenagers, and don’t really want to. But that’s not what I meant by the title of this article.
When a group is formed at church or in some other organization, a Senior Citizen is seldom asked to lead it. It is just assumed that they aren’t capable of thinking clearly enough for such an important job.
If a senior citizen applies for a regular 9-5 job, he or she is not likely to get it if there are other equally qualified applicants, or often some not as qualified applicants.
Should a Senior Citizen choose to run for President, a major talking point against him is his age. He is referred to as dottering, senile, not all there, and/or suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. (Although, I don’t see how they could prove that last point since even doctors admit that they have to examine a brain after the patient has died to be sure of that diagnosis.)
Today, I was called “Hon,” at least 3 times by a clerk that waited on me in a local store. Do you think she would have called a woman in her 30’s or 40’s “Hon?” I don’t think so. Do we older people look like little children or something?
Sometimes, when a older person loses a spouse or someone close to them, they experience a temporary period of time during which they may appear to be withdrawn and confused, but this is not limited to seniors. It is often used, however, to take advantage of seniors.
Recently, an elderly relative of mine lost her husband, who left a legally witnessed will, leaving everything to her, but, within a few weeks relatives began to descend on her, claiming that “Dad,” or “Uncle,” or “Grandpa,” had promised him or her a particular item.
His wife, still grieving, and a bit bewildered by it all, rather than risk dishonoring a promise her husband may have made, handed over the items without question. It was months later that she realized she had been the victim of greed.
Even senior citizens are sometimes guilty of assuming another person is senile just because of their age.
I overheard two older single men in a group I belonged to discussing a lovely, but very quiet widow lady in our group. One suggested that the other invite the lady in question to a movie, but the reply was, “No way. I think she’s senile because she doesn’t say much. Besides, she’s too old for my taste.” Neither man was under 70 and both were overweight and almost bald. They assumed that this woman was senile without even knowing her. The truth is that she was younger than either of them and her shyness kept her from talking much until she got to know a person well.
Senior citizens are not all senile, as some people seem to think. True, many are not quite as strong in body as they were a few years ago, but most still have as much if not more wisdom than many younger people today. If you are guilty of leaping to conclusions due to a person’s age, take another look. You may be missing out on one of the very best relationships of your life.
Jeanne Gibson writes from her home in Springfield, Oregon on a variety of subjects such as marriage, divorce, kids, cats, electric bikes, working from home and senior citizen issues. To learn more about keeping your brain alert, check out her blogpost at: http://sowingseedsthatmatter.blogspot.com/2010/07/perk-up-old-brain-cells.html
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You may want to take care of a member of your family who is already a senior citizen. Your desire is sincere and is definitely there and you truly want to be of help, but you should be aware of a lot of things before you actually do so. It is not an easy thing to do, for one thing. There are plenty of challenges involved in taking care of a senior citizen, and that’s even if you take into consideration the fact that you are going to do it for a member of your own family.
It is important that you know right away of the challenges that you are likely to face early on, so that you can decide if you really want to do it. The difficulty of dealing with elderly family members is a good place to start. You would have to be prepared to deal with them, with their behavior and the tantrums that they are likely to have once you do assume the task of taking care of them. And of course there are the health issues that are quite serious when you talking about senior citizens. The costs of their medication and different health issues are something that you really need to consider seriously.
Above all that however, is the fact that you want to do it because you genuinely care for them. The love that you have for your senior family members goes beyond any of the things that you need to deal with or worry about. It all becomes easy and even fun to do and you are not really going to worry about all the stuff that is connected with taking care of your senior family member. However, even if you have all the right intentions, you still need some tips and the right information about how you could do things the right way.
Here then are some tips for you to follow if you are going to take care of a citizen at home:
- Make sure that the bathrooms in your home, especially those that are frequently used by the elderly, are always clean and kept as dry as you can so that they would not slip and fall. There have been too many cases of senior citizens slipping and falling in bathrooms and you definitely don’t want that to happen to your loved ones.
- Needless to say, the home where you and your senior citizen family members are staying should be as clean as possible. You need to make sure that your home; specifically its interiors and the rooms where the elderly are staying are free from dust and have very good ventilation.
- Senior citizens need to be reminded of different things on a constant basis. It can be about anything, the medication that they need to take or the time that they need to take their nap. The important thing is that you remain patient even though they may display some irritability and some anger at times. Just maintain your patience and understanding at all times.
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No one wants to grow old before his or her time. There are some things senior citizens can do that will keep them looking and feeling younger. Consider these seven ways seniors can stay young.
Geriatric Massage is one of the best things senior citizens can do for themselves. The massage of the muscles improves blood circulation by moving blood cells that may have become trapped in the capillaries. The massage provides relief for stiff and sore muscles resulting in the person feeling better. As muscles are released, the individual has more freedom of movement resulting in an improved posture. Many seniors report fewer problems with insomnia or other sleep problems after a massage.
Senior citizens soon learn that eating healthy is in their best interest. A healthy diet provides the needed fiber to keep the individual regular and fight the discomfort of constipation. Eating healthy food provides the body with antioxidants to fight disease and can prevent health problems. The senior who selects healthy foods is more likely to maintain a healthy weight, one of the keys to living a more active life with fewer health problems.
There is a tendency of some seniors to withdraw into their own homes and avoid socializing with others. However, you need to socialize in order to stay young. If you have hobbies that you love, now is the best time in life to partake in them. Make an effort to remain in touch with friends and family. The banter of conversations with those outside your own home is necessary to keep your mental functions sharp.
Exercise has many positive benefits for the senior citizen. In addition to making the person look younger and fit, exercise can improve flexibility and increase mobility. A workout releases endorphins, chemicals that help to improve the overall mood. The person who is in shape is less likely to experience falls, which can lead to broken bones.
Retirement can be a joyous time; however, it is easy to begin to feel that your existence on earth is no longer making a difference. Seniors that get involved stay younger by knowing that their presence matters. Many volunteer organizations need help. Become a grandma or grandpa volunteer at local schools. Volunteer at a hospital. Use your time to benefit your church, synagogue or other house of worship.
Use your brain to keep young. Get a library card and read on a regular basis. Enroll in a community college course to learn something new. Keep your brain challenged using crosswords, puzzles and games.
Use meditation to reduce stress on a daily basis. Use relaxing exercises such as tai chi or yoga (often available at your local Y) to reduce your stress load.
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Are you a senior citizen? Medical science told us that there are ailments associated with age. You’ll agree with me that it is virtually unheard of for youngsters to complain of illnesses like osteoporosis, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis and certain cancers. But these are mostly the health challenges of older adults. As a senior citizen, you need to know that you can effectively manage these diseases through healthy eating. Let me show you how.
Fluids. Naturally, you’ll observe, in most cases, that the skin and the entire body frame of older adults shrink as they get older and older. This is as a result of the fact that they tend to dehydrate so easily, which may not be unconnected with their inability to feel thirsty most of the time. As a senior citizen therefore, you should form the habit of constantly ingesting water and fruit juices into your system.
Proteins. Proteins are body-building foods. They are also in the business of repair and or replenishment of worn-out body cells and tissues. The healthy proteins for senior citizens include eggs, lean meats, turkey or poultry and fish. From these, minerals such as calcium, zinc and iron, greatly needed by the elderly can be sourced.
Carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are energy-giving foods. It is a known secret that senior citizens need a lot of energy derivable from this kind of foods in order to sustain their ability to perform basic daily activities like dressing, bathing, etc. Whole grains, cereals and their derivatives form excellent diets for them. And more so, with some fibre content in the foods, these older folks will be less exposed to constipation.
Fats. Only unsaturated fat foods, as in lean meats, fish, low-fat diary products, avocados, nuts and seeds, should be taken by senior citizens. The reason being that other fats contain HDL kind of cholesterol that can aggravate blood pressures, thereby putting their heart conditions at very high risk.
Moderate Exercise. Man shall not leave by bread alone. Our senior citizens need some bit of exercises – taking a walk, light gardening, riding bicycles, etc – which can help them burn off calories thereby reducing weight; improving heart and lung functions, and ultimately engender overall feeling of well-being. It is important to note, however, that before they embark on any form of exercises, their doctors must be aware.
If our senior citizens can strive to adopt the above healthy lifestyles or habits, I guarantee their good health even though, for sure, their health cannot be as it used to be when they were younger. Healthy eating is a gateway to a healthy, long life and the case of our senior citizens cannot be different.
What is that health condition that constitutes a burden in your life? Do you know that through healthy eating you can overcome it? You can learn a lot more here: http://www.healthyeatingpalace.blogspot.com/.
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Depression is a medical condition that is characterized by feeling down, depressed, or hopeless; low self-esteem; and loss of interest in things one used to enjoy. Senior citizens are prone to life-altering changes that can lead one to feel depressed. Dealing with the trials life throws at us such as, loss, change, loneliness, or a chronic medical condition can be quite overwhelming. Still, depression is not a “normal” part of aging. Like heart disease or diabetes, depression is a medical condition and it can be treated with medication and therapy. Treatment is effective at alleviating symptoms within a few weeks in at least 80 percent of people.
It is important that senior citizens and those providing their elder care understand the symptoms of depression. If you think you or someone you know may be suffering from depression, identify your symptoms by using the checklist provided below. Then, if necessary, seek assistance. For senior citizens, the most frequently used resource is a family doctor. Bringing a trusted friend or relative may help ease any anxiety when going to an appointment. Understand that your doctor may suggest a checkup and begin treatment or refer you to a mental health specialist.
Before you say, “I’m okay”….
Do you feel:
- Anxious or “empty”
- Guilty or useless
- Agitated or irritable
- Less interested in things you used to enjoy
- Like no one loves you
- Life is not worth living
Or if you are:
- A change in sleeping habits
- A change in eating habits
- Persistent headaches, stomach aches, or pain
Remember that these may be real symptoms of a real medical condition that can be effectively treated. Talk to your doctor today. Though many senior citizens suffer from depression, feeling depressed is not a normal part of aging.
Health and Wellness tips
There are many measures senior citizens can take to help relieve the symptoms of depression. Those involved in the elder care of senior citizens experiencing depression should encourage the senior to follow these tips and improve their wellbeing.
Check your medications. Senior citizens often take many medications. Some medications, including those for sleep, blood pressure, and nervousness, may affect mood. Talk with your doctor about each of the medications you are taking. Be sure to include all over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements to minimize the chances of having side effects.
Limit alcohol consumption. Alcohol use can bring about depression. And, when alcohol and drugs are combined, interactions that lead to depression can occur.
Stay connected. Sometimes, senior citizens find it more difficult to get out and stay connected with others. Still, talking with friends and family members, getting a pet, or even finding a new interest or hobby can help one through this tough time. Get involved in activities you take pleasure in, such as reading a good book, going to a ballgame or a taking a class in a subject that interests to you.
Be active. Physical activity can improve physical and mental wellbeing. Though some senior citizens believe they cannot exercise, there are activities like walking, gardening, or working out (even if one is in a wheelchair) that can be helpful. Make a goal of 30 minutes of activity 5 days a week. If you have not taken part in physical activity in a while, be sure to check with your doctor and get his OK before you begin.
Eat healthy and drink plenty of fluids. Choose healthy snacks like fruits, vegetables, yogurt, or nuts to increase your nutrition and energy. Also, try to eat well-balanced meals. Some senior citizens suffer from loss of appetite and weight loss; if you have experienced either of these, consult your doctor.
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Senior citizens are more physically vulnerable than the rest of us. During times of extreme weather, it is even more true. With the increasing occurrence of more extreme cases of weather, the vulnerability of senior citizens – be it to extreme cold, heat, strong winds, floods, etc. – is also increased several times over.
With the upcoming cold season, senior citizens are sure to be vulnerable to the weather once more. Those of us who have family members and friends who are already senior citizens should do what we can to make sure that we help them become more comfortable. Do the little things that can make their homes and living areas warmer and full of all the comfort that they require.
Another important thing that we can do is to make them feel that they are secure and cared for. The attention and the time that we can give them is already enough to let them have a better feeling, and that would help them cope with the situation that they are in. Although of course, there are a lot practical things that need to be done in order to ensure their safety and preparedness for the coming winter.
To be clearer about how senior citizens can become better prepared for the upcoming cold season, here are a few specific things to remember:
- Adequate heating should be provided for the homes of senior citizens. And aside from actually being provided with ample heat, they should also be given proper assurance that the heater in their place is actually running. Not only that but the furnaces, air filters, and the insulation in the homes should also be checked. This is ideally done before the onset of the cold. Some care and caution should be exercised in the use of wood stoves and fireplaces.
- Seniors should be provided with as much essential supplies as possible. Those who are helping out senior citizens with their preparations should prioritize food that can be stored for a long time. This becomes especially important when getting out for food supplies becomes difficult, or even impossible. Emergency and medical supplies also become absolute necessities during these times, as well as alternative sources of energy.
- Since senior citizens love to keep contact with their families and loved ones all the time, then you could just imagine how they would like it to continue during the winter season. In fact, it can be expected that they would love to hear from them more. And what those people should do is to actually comply and make contact and communicate with their family members who are already senior citizens much more often. It gives them assurance and also cheers them up during the bleak season.
- Senior citizens find that it is more difficult for them to move around during the cold season. Be it walking or driving in their cars, and that is why their relatives and friends who are able should help them travel around, especially if it cannot be avoided at all.
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If you are a senior citizen and do not have health insurance, the thought of having to go to an emergency room in case of illness may be troubling you. You should have planned for your retirement but if you did not include the details of having Health Insurance after you retire, you are at the mercy of the ER and without coverage you may even have to forego treatment. For many people in the US, health care costs often result in bankruptcy even when they have insurance because not all illnesses are covered by the policy. When it can happen to the people who have insurance, it can be a nightmare for those who do not have it.
In recent months, the issue of health insurance for senior citizens has received extraordinary coverage and attention in the US because of President Obama’s plan to have universal health care available to all citizens. This measure from the Obama administration has drawn critics and supporters alike and the battle lines are drawn in an increasingly bitter battle. The issue at stake is whether there should be a public option that would enable the senior citizens access to health care provided for by the government. The public option does not guarantee free coverage but includes an option for the employers and the government to provide for an eventuality.
Senior citizens need healthcare and they need it more than the other age groups as they need access to quality medical assistance because of their advancing age that makes them vulnerable to disease and disability. It is for this reason that medical care in many countries is free for senior citizens and they have access to the best medical facilities. Likewise, the US should also have a health care system that provides for its senior citizens and ensures that they get proper treatment for their various ailments.
In the context of the baby boomers retiring in large numbers and without the proper tools for some of them to plan adequately for their retirement and health care, there should be a comprehensive plan for access to medical coverage by the insurance companies as well as the government. There are several insurance companies that have special plans for senior citizens as they allow for the coverage with all facilities provided for them. However, there are other companies that do not encourage coverage for senior citizens on the grounds that they are a high risk category and hence the premiums do not justify coverage. There are some commentators who call for an old age premium to be placed on the coverage plan so that senior citizens can get coverage at the rates provided by the insurers, albeit with a premium.
The point that is being made here is that senior citizens better plan for their retirement when they are in their forties and fifties so that they do not become a burden on their children and that they retain coverage beyond retirement and after they are well into their sixties.
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Healthy Eating and Lifestyle
While it is important for people of all ages to stay healthy, it is especially important for senior citizens to maintain healthy eating habits as well as to stay active which is important in the prevention of chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. By practicing healthier living practices, senior citizens can maintain a healthy weight, avoid depression, and stay mentally sharp. Those participating in caring for the elderly should be aware of these healthy living practices and work to both encourage and facilitate them.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a healthy diet includes many different types of food that are rich in nutrients. They have outlined specifically what this eating plan entails at the website.. Because this eating plan is designed specifically for senior citizens, it focuses on the types of foods that are important for preventing common ailments of older Americans like obesity and serious chronic illnesses.
Healthy Eating 101:
By following some of the tips listed, senior citizens can start a healthier lifestyle today:
- Don’t skip meals. It is important to eat regularly in order to maintain normal metabolism and not become tempted to eat higher fat foods when food is consumed.
- Eat a diet that is high in fiber. By eating foods like whole-grain breads, beans, vegetables, and fruits, you can lower your susceptibility to diabetes and heart disease.
- Senior citizens especially should begin to adjust their diet to one that includes less calories and fat because the body will need less as it ages.
- Calcium and Vitamin D are very important for nutrition and keeping bones strong. You can get this by either getting in at least three servings of dairy every day, or substituting these with soy-based beverages and proteins.
- Senior citizens will have a harder time absorbing adequate amounts of the B12 vitamin. For this reason, it is important to eat cereals fortified with this nutrient or taking vitamin B12 supplements with meals.
- Snack the smart way. Senior citizens will want to limit the amount of unhealthy snacking they do which involves foods high in calories and sugars. Instead, keep small portions of dried fruit, peanut butter, or crackers at hand to keep the appetite under control while remaining healthy.
- Drink plenty of water. Although senior citizens often feel less thirsty then they used to, it is important to stay hydrated by either drinking water or water-based beverages like tea, coffee, soup, and skim milk.
Planning and Preparing Meals
Sometimes people find it hard to eat healthily because eating is often a social event which involves many people with different eating preferences and goals. While it is important to be able to enjoy a meal with family and friends, it is also important to maintain your own eating integrity by making sure everyone is on board with your personal healthy eating goals. Friends and family, as well as those providing elder care should facilitate healthy eating, not detour from it. The following tips address ways that senior citizens can maintain the healthy eating habits without sacrificing the social aspect of sharing a meal with others or learning to adjust to a lifestyle that involves eating with less people on a day-to-day basis.
- Grocery shopping with others. This can be a fun and smart way to control the cost and quantity of food that you consume. If you don’t live with many people, this is a good way to split large-quantity items like potatoes and eggs which you may not be ableto use before expiration.
- A time saving a smart way to eat healthy is cooking large quantities of food ahead of time and portioning for heating on later dates.
- A quick way to prepare meals for yourself or for guests involves keeping frozen or canned fruits and vegetables on hand. Draining and/or rinsing canned foods is a good way to lower sodium or calories in foods that are kept in high sugar or high salt fluids.
- Eating or preparing a meal shouldn’t always be a chore. Trying new recipes or eating outside can be a fun new twist on a meal with someone special.
- Try to eat with people you enjoy to be around.
- Some senior citizens have difficulty preparing meals, which is why it is important to become informed about home health care agencies or eldercare facilities that can aid in providing meals. The Eldercare Locator number is 1-800-677-1116.
Loss of Appetite or Desire to Eat
There are various reasons for why some senior citizens may not eat as well as they should or lose the desire to eat completely.
If you find that it is difficult to eat well, then it is best to speak with a healthcare provider or someone involved in your elder care about what can be done to help you eat better.
Some senior citizens are unable to eat well due to issues involving the condition of their teeth or issues with dentures. Checking with a dentist about physical pain that occurs when eating or other issues can help with these issues that lead to poorer eating habits.
When senior citizens lose family and friends or become depressed about events in their life, they may lose the desire to eat. In these instances, it is of the utmost importance that these individuals seek help from people they trust like their family, friends, church community, or those assisting with their elder care that will happily help them in finding ways to continue a healthy lifestyle and eating plan.
Some senior citizens complain that the flavor of foods change when they begin to take certain medications. While it is best to consult with a physician about issues surrounding medication, people can also take vitamin supplements with food that will help them stay healthy.
If you have someone who assists with your in home care, ask them to be vigilant about helping you eat healthy. Have them remind you to eat, and ask them to lend you a hand in preparing meals that are good for you.
Maintaining a healthy weight is important for being able to function in day-to-day life as well as stay mentally sharp. Senior citizens often lose or gain weigh as they age. If you are unsure about what weight you should maintain, consult your physician.
Health Risks Associated with Being Underweight
- poor memory
- compromised immunity
- osteoporosis (weak bones)
- decreases strength
- hypothermia (lowered body temperature)
Health Risks Associated with Being Overweight
- type 2 diabetes
- high blood pressure
- high cholesterol
- heart disease
- stroke (lack of oxygen transported to the brain)
- some cancers
- gallbladder disease
Because healthy weights will differ for everyone, it is important to verify with a physician whether it is healthy for you personally to lose or gain weight.
Participating in regular healthy amounts of physical activity can not only make you feel better, but it can make you less prone to diabetes, heart disease, and colon cancer. Staying active can be difficult for senior citizens, still it is an important part of a healthy lifestyle.
The following are some tips for maintaining a lifestyle that incorporates physical activity:
- Know what amount of physical activity is appropriate for you. Everyone has different levels of activity that is safe for them, and while remaining active is important, always consult a health care provider about what is right for your lifestyle.
- Take time to warm up, cool down, or take breaks when participating in a session of increased physical activity.
- Take it slow. Always start slowly and build up to more intense levels of physical activities.
- If you experience any pain, dizziness, or shortness of breath during exercise, stop the activity immediately.
- Drink water.
- Dress appropriately if you decide to exercise outdoors. Wear warmer clothes during the winter and wear lighter clothes during the summer while applying sunscreen or wearing sunglasses.
- Wear the correct shoes for the activities that you participate in.
Types of Activity
Aerobic activities include activities that increase the heart rate and work the larger muscle groups. You may be able to speak a few words, but would not be able to carry on an entire conversation due to breathing patterns. Some examples of aerobics include:
- brisk walking
- water aerobics
- house work
- active play with children or pets
Begin incorporating small periods of this activity into your schedule during the week while slowly increasing the duration and frequency as time progresses. It is also important to incorporate different types of exercise that focus on balance and flexibility. Becoming used to a lifestyle with regular patterns of aerobic activity can reduce the effects of aging, control weight, lower risk of heart disease, improve flexibility, increase mood and energy, and expand social networks by meeting new people while doing various activities.
Strengthening activities involve the use of muscle groups against resistant forces like when lifting weights or doing yard work that involves lifting, digging, or pushing a lawn mower. This type of activity can keep muscles strong, reduce the need for a cane, reduce risk of bone injury, and help maintain a healthy weight.
Balance activities focus on muscles in specific areas of the body that encourage control as you move through space, reducing the likelihood of falls. This kind of activity could include walking heel to toe, standing on one foot, getting out of a sitting position without the use of the hands, and standing on the tip of your toes. Balance activities can help you stay steady on your feet and reduce the risk of fall and subsequent injury.
Flexibility activities increase the length of the muscles and can include stretching, yoga, and popular exercise programs like pilates. These activities can maintain the felxibility of joints, prevent stiffness, prevent injuries, and lower stress levels in general.
Weight-bearing activities require the muscles to work against gravity where the arms or legs bear the weight of the body. Activities like walking, tennis, and climbing stairs can build and maintain bone mass or reduce the risk of bone fractures.
Some activities incorporate multiple types of strengthening addressed above. What is important is that senior citizens find an enjoyable and do-able activity that will help them incorporate as many benefits as possible which will have far-reaching benefits to their health.
It’s Easy to Stay Healthy
A common misconception is that it takes an excessive amount of time and extra energy to maintain a healthy lifestyle. However, by just taking short walks for ten minutes a time or cleaning the house regularly can be practical ways to incorporate different physical activities into your daily schedule. And remember, staying healthy as a senior citizen will have increasing benefits as you continue to age.
Staying Motivated to Take Care of Yourself
Just because we age doesn’t mean that we are any less stressed by occurrences in life that may make us feel bad about ourselves or decrease our motivation to be good to ourselves. If anything, many of the challenges senior citizens face add stress. Losing loved ones and friends or having trouble being independent with the added stressed of disease and functioning due to aging can cause depression or lifestyle changes that contribute to bad health. Here are some important tips for being good to yourself when you may not feel motivated due to circumstances out of your control:
- Get plenty of sleep
- Stay connected with family and friends
- Join clubs or other social groups that you enjoy
- Spend time with people that you enjoy
- Volunteer at organizations in your community
- Work a part-time job that isn’t too stressful or demanding
- Watch a funny movie or find a way to laugh
- Take up a hobby that you enjoy
Most importantly, senior citizens should remember that it is relatively easy and worth-while to maintain a healthy lifestyle as they age. Be sure to keep family, friends, and those involved in your elder care informed of your goals as they can help assist you. And remembering to eat healthy meals regularly, getting in physical activity, getting enough sleep, and being good to yourself are critical for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
The Caring Space http://www.TheCaringSpace.com
David Crumrine at the Caring Space We are an organization that connects caregivers and care seekers, providing an easy and affordable resource for families seeking care for friends/loved ones and caregivers seeking employment.
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The Harrowing Medical Journey of a Cancer Survivor by Nina Kramer
“‘You have cancer’ are three of the scariest words you will ever hear,”
says Nina Kramer, author of the new book, The Harrowing Medical Journey of
a Cancer Survivor. “But how you react after hearing those words can mean
the difference between thriving and deteriorating.”
Kramer’s journey through the world of cancer treatment began in 2000 when
she was diagnosed with bladder cancer. Every year over 73,000 people are
diagnosed with the disease in the United States. Men are three times more
likely than women to develop it and about 5% will die from the disease, but
the death rate has been declining over the past twenty years.
Like many, Kramer’s journey began with a routine physical. What followed was
anything but routine. Her first detour began with a trusted doctor. She liked him and
followed his instructions faithfully but, as she was to learn, he was not giving her the best and most advanced treatments. The number one rule when facing an illness as serious as cancer, she quickly discovered, is to do your research and seek out the best doctors and institutions that treat your disease.
The Harrowing Medical Journey of a Cancer Survivor is Kramer’s courageous
story as she copes with a severe illness that lasted more than a decade. It began with a diagnosis of low-grade bladder cancer, continued with the removal and/or reconstruction of vital organs, and ended with dialysis and a kidney transplant. Although the story is specific to bladder cancer and its aftermath, it covers aspects inherent in any serious,
and sometimes life-threatening, illness.
With candor, honesty and life-affirming messages, The Harrowing Medical
Journey of a Cancer Survivor shares:
* The impact of emotions on surviving a serious illness – fear, denial, anger, anxiety and depression can have devastating results
* The search for experts – the single most important thing you can do when
battling a severe illness is to find the best hospitals and doctors specializing in your disease
* The focus on other passions – engrossing yourself in activities other than the illness to relieve your mind from the constant anxiety of worrying about it
* The importance of cancer support groups and psychotherapy – talking to other people can help you explore your feelings so they don’t interfere with or hamper your recovery
* Spending time on what you love – do everything you can to fight your illness, but spend time doing the things that bring you pleasure and satisfaction
* Having sex – the human contact and intimacy, as well as the erotic pleasure, can be a wonderful antidote to pain and misery
“I wanted to share my story with other cancer victims,” adds Kramer. “As I travelled this frightening medical journey, I learned a lot about how to survive and even thrive under sometimes terrifying circumstances. I wanted to share this experience in the hope that it would help others undergoing frightening medical journeys.
Nina Kramer, is a published novelist and author of the new nonfiction ebook,
The Harrowing Medical Journey of a Cancer Survivor. She has held various
positions from journals manager to assistant vice president with medical,
scientific and technical publishers while pursuing her craft as a writer.
While undergoing cancer treatment, she made an arduous trip through some
remote locations in China—described in her Medical Journey book—as
research for her next novel set in the Middle Kingdom, Phoenix Rising; Tigers Flying. She divides her time between New York City and Stockbridge, MA.
The Harrowing Medical Journey of a Cancer Survivor is available in ebook format
through www.authorhouse.com. www.amazon.com, www.barnesandnoble.com,
and all online booksellers.
Review Copies Available Upon Request
Sparks, NV, April 4, 2013 – Northern Nevada Medical Center’s Pain Management Program recently earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval™ in Low Back Pain. The program is the first in the nation to receive this certification.
This certification recognizes NNMC’s dedication to continuous compliance with The Joint Commission’s state-of-the-art standards. To achieve this prestigious certification, the hospital underwent a rigorous on-site evaluation by The Joint Commission. NNMC earned certification by proving compliance with nationally developed standards including infection prevention and control, leadership and medication management.
The Pain Management Center is co-managed by NNMC and Nevada Advanced Pain Specialists and offers a multidisciplinary approach to the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic pain.
“At the Pain Management Center, our goal is to return patients to a maximum level of functioning and independence by identifying the source pain and using advanced techniques to reduce the level of pain and suffering,” said Denis Patterson, DO, Medical Director of the Pain Management Center. “We are honored that The Joint Commission has recognized our program as a center of excellence.”
The Pain Management Center works with patients to identify the source of pain, which may be a specific disc, nerve root, joint or tendon. Physicians then use innovative image-guided techniques and therapies to target the precise area of the pain.
“The Joint Commission certifications verify that NNMC’s Pain Management Center is truly a center of excellence for low back pain, and this is a major step toward maintaining excellence and continually improving the care we provide,” said Tiffany Meert, Chief Operating Officer, Northern Nevada Medical Center.
“In achieving Joint Commission certification, Northern Nevada Medical Center has demonstrated its commitment to the highest level of care for its low back pain patients,” said Jean Range , M.S., R.N., C.P.H.Q. executive director, Disease-Specific Care Certification, The Joint Commission. “Certification is a voluntary process, and I commend Northern Nevada Medical Center for successfully undertaking this challenge to elevate its standard of care and instill confidence in the community it serves.”
NNMC also has certifications in stroke, knee replacement, hip replacement and spine surgery by The Joint Commission. NNMC is also an Accredited Chest Pain Center by the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care. NNMC is the only hospital in the state with all of these distinctions.
For more information about the Pain Management Center , contact 775-284-8650
By Thair Phillips, President, RetireSafe
A small and relatively new product is making life easier for older Americans. It’s a simple thing, but unit dose laundry detergent packs (or pods) are helping seniors perform necessary laundry chores that they might not otherwise be able to do without help. The laundry packs’ small size and pre-measured, consistent content is perfect for aging hands and eyes. With ten thousand of our fellow Americans reaching the age of 65 each day, it’s a really big deal!
While younger Americans can choose from many options, the pods are a huge help to the frail and the disabled. Consider those who suffer from arthritis, for example. According to 2007-2009 data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), an estimated 50 million adults have self-reported doctor-diagnosed arthritis. That number is expected to grow to 67 million by the year 2030, per NHIS data. Arthritis is the leading cause of disability in the United States, negatively impacting function and mobility for millions of senior citizens. The laundry pods meet the need created by those who can no longer heft a jug of detergent and pour it into a measuring cup. The small (but not too small to handle) size detergent pod fits the bill for aging-in-place seniors who wish to remain self-reliant.
And then there are those who must struggle each and every day with impaired vision. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), individuals over the age of 65 accounts for roughly 30 percent of the U.S. population considered to be visually impaired. Dimming eyesight can reduce physical, functional, emotional, and social well-being. Doing the laundry can be a chore for all of us, but trying to measure the exact amount of liquid or powder for the person who is vision impaired can be a laundry room disaster resulting in ruined clothes and dangerous messes. For age-in-place seniors with cataracts, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and/or diabetic retinopathy, a complication of diabetes that causes visual impairment, anything that can help simplify the laundry measuring process is truly a godsend.
Keep in mind that many older Americans in single family homes and apartments may well have to take their laundry and laundry supplies to a communal laundry room or a Laundromat. Having the convenience of smaller, self-contained detergent pods to carry instead jugs of liquids and large boxes of powder is a big advantage for the elderly. This is especially true for those navigating with canes or walkers, or those needing to keep one hand free for stability.
In short, pre-measured laundry detergent packs or pods are critical innovations for seniors. This is one small-sized product with a huge functional impact for seniors. In an aging America, we need every one of these impactful products, and many, many more.
RetireSafe is a nationwide organization of 4000,000 supporters that advocates on behalf of seniors on issues regarding Social Security, Medicare, health and financial well-being.
Contact Thair Phillips, (202) 628-5095
Senior SafeGuards specializes in Ramping, Handrailing and Independent Living Aids. We are a family oriented small business in the Reno, Sparks area of Nevada. We sell Modular, Suitcase, Multifold, Threshold, Solid, and Van Ramps. We also carry Independent Living Aids and disability equipment.
We are one of the few companies in the area that will install your ramp for you. We also have RENTAL RAMPS available if you are laid up for just a few months.
Give us a call at (775) 359-3889 for a free quote. We look forward to working with you.
HealthCare Partners Nevada is a network of more than 200 primary care physicians and more than 1,300 specialists. With medical clinics and specialty care affiliates throughout Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, Henderson, Boulder City and Pahrump, HealthCare Partners Nevada (HCPNV) is committed to delivering the highest quality of care to all our patients.
Through our total care model, HealthCare Partners provides patient centered comprehensive primary care, specialty, and urgent care services. Founded in 1996, HealthCare Partners Nevada is an affiliate of HealthCare Partners LLC with offices in California, Florida and Nevada.
At HealthCare Partners we approach your health with Total Care. Our mission is to deliver the highest quality care to all our patients. We do this by offering you complete access to our services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We also accommodate same-day appointments.
Our health care providers are ready and able to offer expert care when you need it most. While our mission is to deliver the best possible care for our patients, our promise is to provide the personal attention you deserve. It is our pleasure to ensure your individual healthcare needs are met.
When you choose HealthCare Partners, you are choosing to manage your health through what we call our Total Care Model. Total care means that you are actively involved with a team of healthcare professionals lead by your primary care physician who is responsible for coordinating your care and ensuring the best outcome possible for your medical needs.
HealthCare Partners is continually adding medical specialties to our team of healthcare professionals, including cardiology, dermatology, endocrinology, internal medicine, pediatrics, and podiatry.
Cardiologists are doctors with special training and skill in finding, treating and preventing diseases of the heart and blood vessels.
Click here to find a HealthCare Partners Medical Group cardiologists.
- Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) Repair
- Atrial Fibrillation Management
- Cardiac Catheterization /Angiography
- Cardiovascular Disease Management
- Carotid Ultrasonography
- Catheter Ablation (CA)
- Cholesterol Management And Testing
- Coagulation Monitoring
- Coronary Angioplasty/Stenting
- Doppler Ultrasound
- Echocardiography (Echo)
- Electrophysiological Studies (EPS)
- Gated Blood Pooling Imaging
- Heart Rhythm Management
- Holter/Event Monitoring
- Implantable Cardioverter /Defribrillator (ICD)
- Laser Lead Extractions
- Nuclear Cardiac Imaging
- Patent Foramen Ovale Repair (PFO)
- Percutaneous Transluminal Coronary Rotational Atherectomy (PCTRA)
- Peripheral Vascular Disease Management And Testing
- Peripheral Vascular Interventions
- Permanent Pacemaker Implantation
- Stress Testing
- Structural Heart Disease
- T-Wave Alternans
- Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR)
- Transesophageal Echocardiography
- Ventricular Septal Defect Repair (VSD)
- Women And Heart Disease
Endocrinologists are doctors that focus on the medical aspects of hormones and their associated diseases and conditions. Endocrine disorders may include: cholesterol disorders, coronary artery disease, diabetes, hormone replacement therapy, hypertension, hypoglycemia, obesity, osteoporosis, reproductive medicine and thyroid disorders.
Dermatologists are doctors that specialize in the diagnosis, treatment and management of disorders of the skin, hair and nails.
Internal medicine specialists are doctors that focus on adult medicine and have had special study and training focusing on the prevention and treatment of adult diseases. Internists are sometimes referred to as the “doctor’s doctor”, because they are often called upon to act as consultants to other physicians to help solve puzzling diagnostic problems.
Pediatricians are doctors that focus on babies, children, adolescents, and young adults from birth to age 21. Pediatricians manage the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of their patients in every stage of development.
Podiatrists are doctors that diagnose and treat conditions affecting the foot, ankle and related structures of the leg.
We Believe in 3 Things…
Laser Wellness PMA believes in truly a three word motto: Learn, Invest, Share We know that today is more important than ever for people to Learn about their health conditions, Learn about what natural options are out there, and to Learn how to think with a winning attitude towards health and life. We believe that by Investing in your health you are taking responsibility for your health and not just relying on someone else alone. It has been proven again and again that being an active partner in your health and wellness journey can make all the difference. Most people have never really invested in their health before, they pay insurance, they supplement, they pay for medications, but they never really invest in their health and miss out on truly being responsible and given themselves the best quality of life possible. We also believe in Sharing health and wellness with everyone you know. Once you invest in LLLT, whether you are a professional or a consumer, Share it with every family member, friend, neighbor, and co-worker so they can get a glimpse of what LLLT can do for them…
Do You Believe In Health & Wellness?
What is it that keeps our Health in somewhat dismay? As we age, we have been trained to think that taking medications, surgeries, pain, lack of energy, lack of mobility, memory and vision loss, are all just the way it is and “normal.” The TRUTH is we have given up responsibility of our own health journey. Who is Responsible for our health and our families, our Doctors? Our Government? Our Insurance Companies? FACTS are that we are living longer, but not healthier, we are living sicker, longer! We have more disease, sickness, pain, and injury problems than ever, and we take more prescriptions and have more surgeries than ever, yet we seem to be unhealthier! The US is near the bottom in Longevity and Life Expectancy out of all the industrialized nations on Earth!
Call for a FREE Information Packet with dvd AND for a FREE Consultation from our Specialist: (605)791-2283 Direct
Low Level Laser Therapy Works!
Light Amplication by Stimulated (Oscillation) Emission of Radiation or “Laser” has continued to bring out new changes in just about every medical and consumer field there is. “Why is Low Level Laser Therapy so effective and continues to show tremendous results thru research all over the world?” The answer is simple, LLLT works at the cellular and atomic level. It carries electrons back into the body, and it helps to Re-energize sick, injured, damaged cells and allows better permeability to take place once again…So what can LLLT do for you since it works at the cellular level? As we continue to do more research, to get more understanding of how to effectively use LLLT, we continue to understand that we have just begun to see the wonderful results that LLT can produce…LLLT and Qlaser is truly Tomorrow’s Health & Wellness Care Today….