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Health
05/13/2010
IconAt this point, every news outlet has discussed the conclusions of some researchers from the University of North Carolina.' The researchers insist that three genes "may" play a strong role in determining why some young men raised in rough neighborhoods or deprived families become violent criminals, while others do not.The research team studied only boys, and used data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, a U.S. nationally representative sample of about 20,000 adolescents in grades 7 - 12.' They found specific variations in three genes that appeared to be associated with bad behavior, but only when the boys suffered some other stresses. "But if people with the same gene have a parent who has regular meals with them, then the risk is gone," said one of the researchers.Genes give us a range of potential - the interaction of those genes with real life determines the outcome - and it appears like family is everything with respect to raising decent, adjusted, functional children. More >>

Tags: FamilyFamily/Relationships - ChildrenFamily/Relationships - FamilyHealthParentingRelativesValues
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05/13/2010
IconThe American Academy of Pediatrics estimates that under the current guidelines, thirty per cent of the nation's children are overweight or obese.' Many doctors fear that a rash of early heart attacks and diabetes will strike these children as they grow older.The nation's pediatricians are therefore recommending wider cholesterol screening for children - starting at age two - and more aggressive use of cholesterol-lowering drugs starting as early as eight years of age in hopes of preventing adult heart problems.Because statins (cholesterol drugs) have been around since only the mid-1980s, there really is no evidence to show whether giving statins to children will, indeed, lower the risk for heart attack in middle age.The main problem is that we live in a culture which is largely hooked into electronic entertainment and spend too much time feeding one end and not moving the other. More >>

Tags: Eat Less-Move MoreFamily/Relationships - ChildrenHealthObesityParenting
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05/13/2010
IconJapan has instituted one of the most serious campaigns in the world to get its citizens to be fit.' This action is motivated by the rapidly aging society's ballooning health care costs, as most Japanese are covered under public health care or through their employment.The term "metabo," comes from the medical concept of "metabolic syndrome," i.e., the factors that heighten the risk of developing vascular disease and diabetes.' They are:' obesity, high blood pressure, high glucose, and high cholesterol.' The term "metabo" has become the nation's nickname for "overweight."Under a two month-old national law, companies and local governments must measure the waistlines of people between the ages of 40 and 74 as part of annual checkups.' That amounts to 44% of the population of Japan.The International Diabetes Federation's ( www.idf.org ) guidelines for Japan of no more than 33.5 inches for men's waistlines and 35.4 inches for women is being used as the standard.' When folks are over those measurements and have a weight-related ailment, they will be given dieting guidance and education.The government will impose financial penalties on companies and local governments that fail to meet these targets.' NEC, a Japanese personal computer production company, said to the New York Times (6/13/08) that if it failed to meet its targets, it could incur almost 20 million in penalties.A survey by the National Center for Health Statistics in the U.S.A. found that the average waist size for Caucasian American men was 39 inches, a full inch smaller than the 40 inch maximum established by the International Diabetes Federation.Ladies didn't do as well:' the average waist size of Caucasian American women was 36.5 inches, about two inches above our threshold.' (The differences in thresholds between Japanese and Americans and men and women have to do with height and body type). More >>

Tags: ChildrenEat Less-Move MoreHealthObesityParentingSocial Issues
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05/13/2010
IconBreitbart.com revealed that a select group of New York City paramedics may soon have a different kind of task:' saving the dead.' The city is considering creating a special ambulance whose crew would rush to collect the newly deceased and preserve the body so that the organs might be taken for transplant.' Top medical officials in the NYC Fire Department and Bellevue Hospital say it has the potential to save hundreds of lives.Generally in the United States, only people who die at hospitals are used as organ donors, because doctors are on hand with life-support machinery to preserve the organs and remove them before they are unusable (which can happen after only a few critical hours).The new transplant ambulance would ideally turn up at the scene of a death minutes after regular paramedics ceased efforts to resuscitate a patient.' They would have to wait for 5 minutes after a formal declaration of death, but then the team would begin work immediately, administering drugs and performing chest compressions intended to keep the organs viable.'Some of these steps may be taken before getting approval from a relative and without knowledge of the deceased's wishes regarding organ donation, but any organ removals would only be done at a hospital.' And no organs would be removed without getting the family's express consent.'U.S. opinion surveys routinely show that a majority of Americans are willing to donate their organs.' An estimated 22,000 people die at home each year in the United States, and several hundred people die every month waiting for organs.' This seems like a worthy pilot project. More >>

Tags: HealthPoliticsSocial IssuesValues
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05/13/2010
IconBoy, oh boy, talk about a feminista double standard!' There are big problems for men who try to impose a dress code for women.' The subhead of a Wall Street Journal article from June 19 read "When a Man Regulates Attire At Work, Women Often See an Oppressor, Not a Mentor."' The ultimate suggestion is to have a woman boss lay down the wardrobe law.Oh, please.Tom Mills, Managing Partner of a Washington DC law office, was asked to make a firm-wide apology for complaining to the Wall Street Journal's "On Style" column that the work attire of some young female law associates was based on the "TV-woman lawyer look with skirts 12 inches above the knee and very tight blouses." Evidently, the attire seen in many law offices and courtrooms reaffirms the accuracy of his statement.Mr. Jim Holt, president of the Mid-American Credit Union in Wichita, Kansas, has become a target since he expressed his view publicly that panty hose are more professional than bare legs for working women.' That relatively benign statement got him lots of actual hate mail - hate mail!! Gee, it doesn't take much for feministas to start spewing hate, does it?The rage seems to be centered on the concept that men should not be able to comment, criticize, suggest, offer an opinion, have a preference - nada - towards a woman without being accused of oppression.' What would female bosses do with male associates who came in with muscle shirts and low, baggy pants revealing skin really low on the abdomen?If women wish to be taken seriously (for their minds, and not their bodies), then they shouldn't be using professional circumstances to dress as they might if they were looking for casual sex. More >>

Tags: griefHealthMental HealthSexSexualitySocial Issues
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05/13/2010
IconI got this in response to a blog I wrote last week: Hi, Dr. Laura.' I am my kid's dad!' I'm writing in response to your blog, " Idiots on Parade ". As a 15 year member of the world's greatest Air Force, and third generation protector of this great nation, I want to thank the residents of Lebanon, Missouri for the support and dedication they have displayed, as they laid one of their own "true patriots" to rest.' My travels with the Air Force have allowed me to see that there are still many, many Americans who are grateful for the service that my brothers and sisters in uniform perform on a day-to-day basis. Many of us spend an unknown amount of time putting our necks on the line so that ALL Americans - even the folks in Berkeley --can continue to enjoy the freedoms they have today.' Having been stationed in California for the last three years, I have seen first-hand the many demonstrations that have taken place in protest of the war.' At first, when I see these demonstrators, my blood boils because I wonder how anyone could feel this way when many young men and women sacrifice a lot on a daily basis.' But once my blood pressure returns to normal, I remind myself that what they are doing is a good thing.' What I mean by that is they are exercising their constitutional rights - the very same rights that we in the military are sworn to uphold and protect at all cost. So, I want to thank the residents of Berkeley for their indirect support, I want to thank the residents of Lebanon, Missouri for their direct support, and, most of all, I want to thank all of my brothers and sisters in uniform for the outstanding Job that they are doing on a day-to-day basis.' There is no doubt in my military mind that we have the best and greatest people serving in the volunteer force known as the United States military! Sincerely, One Proud Air Force member andAMERICAN Technical Sergeant,A. Carpenter More >>

Tags: Bad Childhood - Good LifeBad Childhood-Good LifeHealthMilitarySocial Issues
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05/13/2010
IconI work very hard on fitness.' I'm 61 and can do about one and a half one-handed pushups.' I'm quite proud of that, and thank my trainer, Jason Baker, and my yoga instructor, Pamela Griffin, for years of helping me get in great condition.A study from the Unit for Preventive Nutrition at the Department of Biosciences and Nutrition at Novum Karolinska Institute in Sweden, presented at the American College of Sports Medicine's 55th annual meeting, found that men with increased muscular strength are likely to live longer.The men with decreased muscular strength had a 60% higher risk of cardiovascular disease.' This study further challenged the concept that walking and regular physical activity are the best for preventing heart disease and increasing longevity.'Instead, they suggest that men start by incorporating weight or resistance training into a daily routine.' The benefits of "muscles" extends beyond the risk of dying from all causes, as muscular strength prevents disability from injury, thereby keeping you more independent for a longer period in your life.I'm just going to assume that the same is true for women, and I'll keep pumping that iron! More >>

Tags: Healthhumor
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05/13/2010
Icon"Obese and overweight people require more fuel to transport them and the food they eat, and the problem will worsen as the population literally swells in size," a team at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine says.' This adds to food shortages and higher energy prices, say the School's researchers, Phil Edwards and Ian Roberts, who wrote about this subject in the most recent issue of the medical journal Lancet .At least 400 million adults worldwide are obese.' The World Health Organization (WHO) projects that by the year 2015, 2.3 billion adults will be overweight and more than 700 million will be obese.' The researchers calculate that these fat and obese people require 18% more energy than someone with a stable Body Mass Index (BMI).Is the next step giving tax breaks to those who are thin and fit? More >>

Tags: Eat Less-Move MoreHealthObesitySocial Issues
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05/13/2010
IconA study by Harvard-affiliated researchers published in the Archives of Internal Medicine challenges the notion that you can be fat and fit.' They found that being active can lower, but not eliminate heart risks faced by women who are fat or obese.This new study involved nearly 39,000 women, average age of 54, who filled out a questionnaire at the beginning of the study detailing their height, weight and amount of weekly physical activity in the past year, including walking, jogging, bicycling, and swimming.' They were then tracked for approximately 11 years.Women were considered "active" if they followed government-recommended guidelines, and got at least 30 minutes of moderate activity most days of the week.' Women who got less exercise than that were considered "inactive." Weight was evaluated by body mass index (BMI):' a BMI between 25 and 29 is considered overweight, and 30 or higher is considered obese.Compared with normal-weight active women, the risk for developing heart disease was 54% higher in overweight active women, and 87% higher in obese active women.' By contrast, the risk for developing heart disease was 88% higher in overweight inactive women and 2 1/2 times greater in obese inactive women.About two in five American women at age 50 will eventually develop heart attacks or other cardiovascular problems according to the Associated Press report ( 4/29/08 ).' Excess weight can raise those odds in numerous ways, such as increasing blood pressure and increasing the risks for diabetes, as well as increasing "bad" (LDL) cholesterol.' Exercise counteracts all three.If there's one place in the world where there is no excuse for being inactive, it's southern California.' Between the glorious weather, the hiking trails in the mountains, marked bicycle lanes and more, it's almost impossible to excuse or explain being out of shape. More >>

Tags: Eat Less-Move MoreHealthObesity
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05/13/2010
IconHere's some good news for the day after Mother's Day.' One delightful index of the movement away from the "feminist mother" mentality of "other-than-mother" care is the percentage of new moms who are breastfeeding.' While it is possible that some women squeeze out breast milk into a bottle for the hired help to administer to their baby, the latest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data indicate that 77% of new mothers breastfeed their infants, which is the highest rate in the United States in at least 20 years!The percentage of black infants who were breast-fed rose most dramatically - to 65%.' Only 36% were ever breast-fed in 1993-1994, the study found.' For whites, the figure rose to 79% from 62%.' For Hispanics, it increased to 80%, from 67%.The rates of breast feeding were lowest among women who were unmarried, poor, rural, younger than 20, and had a high school education or less.Experts emphasize that breast milk is better than formula at protecting babies against disease and childhood obesity. More >>

Tags: ChildrenHealthMotherhoodMotherhood-FatherhoodParenting
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