One Woman Starts Legislation Sweeping Nation To Inform Women Of Dense Breast Tissue

 

nancycappello1In 2004, Nancy Cappello, PhD from Connecticut, was diagnosed with advanced stage breast cancer.

She was shocked as she had no prior risk factors, and normal screenings for a decade.

breastcancer13

“I was shocked my cancer had metastasized to 13 lymph nodes and was the size of a quarter, I asked my team of doctors, with my latest ‘normal’ mammogram report in hand, how could this happen since I just had a normal mammogram.” -Nancy

Each physician told her that her cancer was hidden by the mammogram due to her dense breast tissue.

Dense breast tissue is comprised of less fat and more connective tissue which appears white on a mammogram. Cancer also appears white thus tumors are often hidden or masked by the dense tissue.

As a woman ages, her breasts usually become more fatty. However, 2/3 of pre-menopausal and 1/4 of post menopausal women (40%) have dense breast tissue. 

Additionally, as the density of the breast increases, the risk of breast  cancer also increases.

Radiologists have been reporting a woman’s dense breast tissue to her referring doctor for twenty years.   Most often, that information is not conveyed to the patient.

Displaying heterogeneously or extremely dense breast tissue on a mammogram is considered dense (BIRADS C, D). 

Learn More

NancyCappello2
Amy Colton, Nancy Cappello

“After an extensive search of the literature, which existed for decades before my diagnosis, I learned that 40% of women have dense breast tissue, that mammograms are limited in ‘seeing’ cancer in dense breasts and that there are other technologies, such as ultrasound or MRI that can significantly ‘see’ cancers that are invisible by mammogram.”

When Nancy asked her doctors to report dense breast tissue to women in her community, each of them refused.  

NancyCappello4
Nancy Cappello featured in the New York Times

“My Italian heritage with our tenets of truth and justice immediately kicked in.”

 

Her doctors’ rejection led to action when in 2009, Connecticut became the first state in America to report dense breast tissue to the patient through the mammography report.

NancyCappello3

As of today, thanks to Nancy Cappello’s unplanned advocacy, thirty-one states have a density reporting law and more are pending.

 

Nancy Cappello: One of 8 ‘chemo’ infusions 3 months before 11th NORMAL mammogram

Nancy has since been honored by UNICO at its national convention with the 2017 Americanism Award for her breast health advocacy through the work of her two non- profit organizations, Are You Dense Inc. and Are You Dense Advocacy Inc.

The Americanism award recognizes an Italian-American who has made an enduring impact on humanity which encompasses the cornerstone of UNICO’s foundation.

“When I received notice of this prestigious honor, I bowed to give thanks to my parents and my Italian ancestors, who paved the way for me to relentlessly pursue an early diagnosis for women with dense breast tissue, through the democratic process, turning an injustice to justice for women’s breast health.”

Unico National President Tom Vaughn, Nancy Cappello and her husband Joe, Francine Nido, Unico’s National Secretary

Check out the following map link to find out if your state has a law and updates:

http://www.areyoudense.org/news-events/density-reporting-bills-spread-across-country/

NancyCappello5

For More Information on Nancy’s incredible advocacy work please visit: http://www.areyoudense.org

NancyCappello6

So much valuable information for women on http://www.areyoudense.org

 

Thank you, Nancy!

 

UPDATE:

BREAKING HEALTH NEWS:  Senators Dianne Feinstein (CA) and Dean Heller (NV) and Representatives Rosa DeLauro (CT) and Brian Fitzpatrick (PA) introduce a national bill requiring physicians to notify patients whether or not they have dense breast tissue.

On Twitter: Representative Mike Rohrkaste  and Senator Alberto Darling  introduce bill in Wisconsin to prompt patient notification if they have dense breasts, which increases cancer risk.

#NotifyMeNow

Advertisements

Health Hero: Meet 16-Year-Old Mai Griffith

IMG_1046[1]-2Mai (pronounced M-A-Y) Griffith, a 16-year-old student in California started her own 501c3 called Hearts for Hearts to bring medical supplies and volunteer in third world countries that are in need.

HFH_Found transparent

Mai is a sophomore at Santa Margarita Catholic High School. She volunteers at Saddleback Memorial Hospital in her free time and has a passion for serving others.

IMG_1040[1]

Mai hopes to study medicine in college and use her practice to continue to help those in need of medical assistance.

IMG_0726[1]

Each weekend, we’ll feature someone beautiful like Mai, doing something cool to make the world a better place.  I spoke with Mai and and her Mom today before they depart to NYC next week.  From there, she takes off for her journey to Ghana.

Mai, what first prompted you to start the foundation?

MAI:  “I first started volunteering at a hospital near my house. I met a lot
of people who were going through a lot of difficulty and that was what made
the first impression on me. Then, hearing about all of the violence and war
in the news like the war in Syria in the past year, and all of the refugees
who direly needed help, I couldn’t think about anything but helping these
people. It is very hard not to see all of the people calling out for help
in all of these places, especially with everything going on in the world
today.”

box3

Where do the medical supplies come from?

MAI:  “The medical supplies come from personal donations from people,
solicited donations from hospitals, and other non-profits whose goal is to
provide supplies to foundations like ours to deliver to the countries.”

 

box1

How did you even know to create a 501c3? Who helped you?

MAI: “People tend to donate more when they know that it is a legitimate
non-profit. Making it a 501c3 gave credibility to the cause and gives us
the platform to get corporate sponsorship in the future. My mom helped me
set it up, from being on a non-profit board before, she knows how important
that status is.”

Where do you get funding to go to third world countries?

MAI:  “We get funding from fundraising, selling pins with our logo on them,
and sugar scrubs that we make with our logo on them as well. Spreading the
word about our foundation also helps to bring in donations in many forms.”

mom5.JPG

What do your parents think about what you’re doing?

ANN MARIE (GRIFFITH) DRYDEN, MAI’S MOM: 

“Mai is a very independent young woman and has compassion that is
truly lacking in our society these days. She is interested in medicine and
has been volunteering at a hospital for a year now and has been frustrated
that she can’t actually HELP anyone because of HIPPA rules and her age.
The whole reason she wanted to volunteer was to “give back” to others and
she kept being told NO.

Mai has volunteered on trips outside of the US so she started looking at
ways to volunteer in underdeveloped countries that need the help the most.
From that it kind of evolved into bringing medical supplies to starting a
501c3 in order to have companies be willing to donate the supplies.

As far as her going all the way to Ghana, I am admittedly nervous about it.
I have been in contact with the US Consulate in Ghana as well as reached
out to reporters in the area to see what they have to say about safety and
everyone says the Cape Coast in Ghana is really safe.

So I am feeling about as good about it as I can. When Mai watches YouTube videos
of helping people in these underdeveloped areas she is literally brought to
tears. So….how can I possibly say no. I love Mai for who she is and the
fact that she wants to do this.”

mom1.JPG

We do too.  It can’t hurt that you’re a marketing and finance wiz yourself. I also noticed you have a TV background.  How did your background help Mai?

ANN MARIE:  “I was the Chief Operating Officer for a company called PowerDirect, which does a lot of demographic data for Fortune 500 companies, and we deliver jumbo door hangers for people’s doors. As odd as that sounds, our clients are big companies, such as Google, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Comcast, Best Buy, Verizon, Team Mobile and others.  I managed all aspects of operations and finance. It also includes marketing, advertising, television production, manufacturing, strategic planning and operations.

I’ve been in executive leadership roles for multiple companies for more than 15 years including HBO, True Designs/True Innovations and Sentinel Offender Monitoring. Clearly, my experience has had a tremendous influence on my daughter  as I always talk to her about my work.

As a female executive, I think that’s real important.  So, the first time Mai expressed an interest in doing something to help people my reaction was that it was typical for her because she’s always had a huge heart.  

She has a tremendous amount of compassion.  At the age of 7, she had a lemonade stand and she’s always been into helping others. She volunteered at the hospital, but was frustrated about not really feeling that she was helping enough. She felt she could do more abroad.

The more we talked about it, we brainstormed on what was the best way that she could go about making it a reality.  Then, she did a fundraiser on the beach in Orange County to get people to donate.”

mom3.jpeg

Will you be going to Ghana with your daughter?

ANN MARIE:  “No, she’s joining another volunteer international group called Project Abroad, and they have chaperones, so she’ll be going with them. Originally, I thought the medical supplies would be shipped separately, but yesterday we learned it’s better to pack them in suit cases.  

We’re getting as many suit cases as we can donated. We’ve even been asking on Facebook.  It costs a lot, but we’re trying to get other kids to take a suitcase with them as each is limited to two bags.

The supplies end up going to 3 different locations:  The Cape Coast Orphanage, The Ankafu Leprosy Camp, and The Cape Coast Teaching Hospital. I reached out to Johnson & Johnson in Dubai trying to get them to give us test strips, so they can use the blood sugar testing machines that will arrive.”

mom2

What safety precautions has she taken?

ANN MARIE (MAI’S MOM): “She’s done vaccines and anti-malaria because she’ll be dealing with kids with malaria. I contacted the U.S. Consulate in Ghana and reached out to different people who have already done things there, so we can get feedback before she goes there and everyone has said that she’s going to an area that is the original area in Africa that slave trading started, so it’s an area that is definitely not very developed.

It’s not a tourist area, but it means it’s less likely to have terrorist activity.  She has a straw that filters water. She’ll be in a place that she can get bottled water brought in from ACCRA, the capital of Ghana.

I made sure Mai really understood what she was doing because most kids her age are at the beach during the summer and here she is wanting to place bandages on sick children.”

mom4.JPG

What will you and Mai being doing while in New York City?

ANN MARIE:  “We’ll be in NYC looking at Columbia University, where she’d like to do Pre-Med, and then she flies out on Friday, July 7.”

That’s wonderful.  Let’s talk to Mai again. Mai, we love what you’re doing. Good luck at Columbia and on your trip to Ghana. Tell me about your future aspirations.

IMG_1046[1]-2

MAI: I’m interested in medicine and have a compassion to help, and I
aspire to be able to reach those across the globe who are in true need of
medical attention. I want to continue with my foundation and to grow it
globally so that I can reach more countries and areas that would benefit
from our help.”

box1

How can other people help support what you’re doing?

MAI:   “Other people can help by sending us medical supplies and products
they no longer need like band aids and other items alike. A lot of times
expiration dates on the boxes do not matter to the places accepting our
donations, so anything helps. Along with supplies, monetary donations
through the link on our site help to pay for shipping, costs and delivery
of the supplies.”

box3

If people want more information, where should they go?

MAI  “Our website http://www.hforhfoundation.org and our Instagram is @hforhfoundation

HFH_Found transparent

Your trip is coming up soon. How do you feel about going to Ghana?

MAI:  I am extremely excited to go to Ghana, as I really want to be able to
help where I am needed and make a real difference. I am also a little
nervous as well, because it is hallway across the globe, and it is so
different from how I live at home. Overall, I really cannot wait because I
know this will be an amazing experience to contribute to the world we all
live in and to make it a better, safer place for generations to come.”

When do you get back from Ghana?

“I get back July 23. There’s a few hour layover in NYC and then back to Orange County.”

Thank you to Mai and her Mom for all they’re doing to help others, and for taking the time to speak with me. Wishing her a safe and wonderful trip and experience.

HFH_Found transparent

http://www.hforhfoundation.org

abclogo

ABC News LA did a story on our Health Hero this week, which you can view here: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BzxYf7TwDSINNWVzWU9sWmtyMDA www.hforhfoundation.org

ABC.jpg

Mai and her Mom can also be reached on Twitter at:  @hforhfoundation

 

If you know someone beautiful doing something cool to help others, let us know.

abc2   Contact:  Maria.Dorfner@yahoo.com. Subject: Health Hero

 

fourth25

Happy, Healthy Fourth of July, everyone!

 

Write for us

Share your health story with the Healthy Within Network community.  Email topic to: Maria.Dorfner@yahoo.com

 

Humor Helps Cancer Patients Heal

LexiTimmons

When 28-year-old Oncology Nurse, Lexi Timmons works with cancer patients, which she’s done for two years, she notices what helps most is humor to brighten their spirits.

She also observes they receive a lot of greeting cards from well-meaning loved ones, but most are downright depressing instead of what they need most during this time, which is cheer.  She realizes it’s not their fault  because the majority of Greeting cards for illness in major retailers are typically glum offering sympathy, along with a Get Well Soon salutation.  She could see her patients get sad as they open and read them.

That’s how Lexi got the idea to create a line of Greeting cards that make cancer patients smile, laugh and feel good.  She calls them LUMPY CARDS.   Everyone knows stress has a negative impact on your mind and body. When people have cancer, they need their immune systems to stay strong and humor helps diffuse stress.  When someone is laughing they’re not thinking of being sick, even if it’s only for a little while.  It’s a step in the right direction.  Laughter is always positive, which is why we love Lexi’s idea and spirit. Sometimes, her patients inspire the cards.

cancercards

Lexi says, “I love to crack jokes and so do my patients. I realized that when people are going through the roughest of times, it actually brings out the best comedian in them.  It helps them cope and it also releases feel good endorphins in them, which are healing.”

Another inspiration was unexpected.  In 2012, cancer hit home when her Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer.

LexiTimmonsandMom1.jpg
Lexi Timmons with a cancer patient she didn’t expect – her own Mom

“My Mom is at her best when she is laughing and not thinking about her cancer. I knew this would help her too.”

LUMPY CARDS sure did make her Mom smile.

LexiTimmonsandMom2
Now, Lexi’s Mom inspires some of the Greeting cards. Together, they share great laughs and beautiful smiles.

Laughter really is the best medicine

 Her Mom Sherry says, “I just love Lexi’s cards! She has a knack for finding just the right line to make people feel better. When I was going through cancer treatment, and I would read one of her cards, they would make me laugh or feel loved. Her cards captured what I needed to hear at each stage of my treatment, and were neither too sympathetic or mushy. So many of the cards out there make you feel like your life is over now that you have cancer or you’re dying.”

Lexi writes the humorous cards herself, but would love to partner with some professional comedians, who would like to volunteer for a good cause and get credit on them.

There are a range of cards uniquely tailored for men, women, friends, family and spouses dealing with cancer and they’re reasonably priced at $3.99 a card.

Healthy Within Network and NewsMD give these cards two healthy thumbs up. 

waxman

And so does the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation, who has this to say:

“Now THIS is interesting!  A company that makes unique and provocative greeting cards for cancer patients. Lumpy Cards certainly doesn’t tiptoe around the topic of cancer.  The animal selection is particularly cute.”

 

 Way to go, Lexi.  An absolutely beautiful person inside and out, like her Mom.

LexiTimmonsandMom3.jpg
Lexi with her biggest fan, Mom

 

 

Here’s a link to Lexi on-camera talking about her inspiration for Lumpy Cards:

 

lumpycardslogo

  You can contact Lexi for an interview (Contact Us page on link) or order cards here:  http://www.lumpycards.com

Maria Dorfner is an  award-winning health journalist, and the the founding CEO of Healthy Within Network and NewsMD Communications.  This is her blog. She has been working in Media since 1983 and began specializing in Health in 1993, creating and sharing original and trusted health content for healthcare consumers. Her award-winning health series and segments have been seen on NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, DISCOVERY HEALTH and more.

“Today, the floodgates are open to anyone reporting on health. Consumers are now well aware that physicians may have ties to pharmaceutical companies, health devices or hospitals, so they question everything. They are also now aware that food and beverage companies promoting products may not have their best interests in mind. When your Mom, Dad, sister, brother or loved one has a health issue, you want to know you’re getting trusted unbiased information. We maintain the experts need to be questioned to ensure not only transparency, but that profits aren’t placed before people.  Additionally, we focus on prevention and maintaining good health.  Virgil said it best when he said, “Health is your greatest wealth. Invest wisely.” ~Maria Dorfner

Must Read: 5 Hottest Tips to Prevent and Treat Cancer

If you read one article on cancer prevention and treatment prior to seeing a doctor, this is it.    -Maria Dorfner

 

About the Guest Author:  Gary Hyman, MD is Director at the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine, The UltraWellness Center and The Institute for Functional Medicine

A Functional Medicine Approach to Cancer by Gary Hyman, MD

                                                                     

Functional medicine empowers patients and practitioners to achieve the highest expression of health by working collaboratively to address the root causes of disease. It is an emerging, personalized model of diagnosis and treatment that better addresses the need to prevent and manage chronic disease. In a word, it is the medicine of WHY, not WHAT.

Functional Medicine doctors are like soil farmers. They create a healthy soil, so pests can’t come and weeds can’t flourish. A healthy soil means disease can’t take hold.

So with cancer, a Functional Medicine practitioner would say that yes, we still need radiation and other conventional approaches, but what else can we do? How can we properly cultivate a healthy soil?

Cancer results because of in an imbalance in the system. So many people are walking around with tumors and don’t know it. We can do something to prevent them from growing by maintaining a healthy soil.

Instead of dividing everything into diseases and labels, emerging science points to a different way of thinking about diseases. Rather than divide the body into organs, Functional Medicine approaches disease as a systemic problem, and we have to treat the system, not the symptom; the cause, not the disease. This completely redefines the whole notion of disease. The landscape of illness is changing.

How we label cancer is no longer synced up with what we know about the origins of cancer or the fact that two people who have cancer with the same name—like breast cancer—can have two completely different diseases which require different treatments. Just because you know the name of your disease doesn’t mean you know what’s wrong with you or what to do about it.

Classifying tumors by body site — lung, liver, brain, breast, colon, etc. — misses the underlying causes, mechanisms, and pathways involved in a particular cancer. What’s more, it gives us no information about how it manifested in a given patient. Two people with cancers in different parts of the body may have developed it for the same reasons.

Similarly, two people with cancers in the same part of the body may have developed it for different reasons. A patient with prostate cancer and one with colon cancer may have more in common with each other than two patients who have colon cancer.

We need to look under the hood and find out what caused the illness to begin with.

Cultivating a Healthy Soil

Numerous things can contribute to cancer. Studies show diet, exercise, thoughts, feelings, and environmental toxins all influence the initiation, growth, and progression of cancer.

If a nutrient-poor diet full of sugar, lack of exercise, chronic stress, persistent pollutants, and heavy metals can cause cancer, could it be that a nutrient-dense, plant-based diet, physical activity,changing thoughts and reactions to stress, and detoxification might treat the garden in which cancer grows?

In other words, treat the soil, not the plant. It is a foundational principle of sustainable agriculture, and of sustainable health.

We can enhance immune function and surveillance through dietary and lifestyle changes, as well as nutrient and phytonutrient therapies. We can facilitate our body’s own detoxification system to promote the elimination of carcinogenic compounds. We can improve hormone metabolism and reduce the carcinogenic effects of too much insulin (more on that in a minute) from our high sugar and refined carbohydrate diet.

We can also alter how our genes are expressed by changing the inputs that control that expression: Diet, nutrients, phytonutrients, toxins, stress, and other sources of inflammation. And we can focus on less divisive and more generative thoughts that, in turn, create more uplifting emotions — all good fertilizer for the soil in the garden of our body.

The Number One Thing You Can Do to Prevent or Control Cancer

Diabesity, the continuum of health problems ranging from mild insulin resistance and overweight to obesity and diabetes, is the single biggest global health epidemic of our time. It is one of the leading causes of heart disease, dementia, cancer, and premature death in the world and is almost entirely caused by environmental and lifestyle factors.

This means that it is almost 100 percent preventable and curable.

Diabesity affects over 1.7 billion people worldwide. Scientists conservatively estimate it will affect one in two Americans by 2020; 90 percent of whom will not be diagnosed.

Obesity (almost always related to diabesity) is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States and around the world. The link between obesity and cancer is well documented and is driven by insulin resistance. Insulin, the fat storage hormone, also drives more inflammation, oxidative stress, and a myriad of downstream effects including high blood pressure, high cholesterol, low HDL, high triglycerides, poor sex drive, infertility, thickening of the blood, and increased risk of cancer, Alzheimer’s, and depression.

The best thing you can do to prevent or control cancer is to control insulin levels with a high-fiber diet rich in real, fresh, whole foods and minimize or eliminate sugary, processed, insulin-raising foods.

Dr. Dean Ornish showed that after just three months on an intensive lifestyle program including a whole-foods, plant-based diet, over 500 genes that regulate cancer were beneficially affected, either turning off the cancer-causing genes or turning on the cancer-protective genes. No medication can do that.

5 Strategies to Reduce Cancer Formation and Growth

Cancer results from an imbalance in our system where the immune system can’t fight off tumors. We can do many things to prevent that cancer from getting to its full stage, and if you have cancer, you can make your body inhospitable to that cancer.

1.

Eliminate food sensitivities. In a major study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, hidden gluten sensitivity was shown to increase risk of death by 35 to 75 percent, mostly by causing heart disease and cancer. By just this mechanism alone, more than 20 million Americans are at risk for heart attack, obesity, cancer, and death. Dairy and gluten are the most common triggers of food allergies that are linked to insulin resistance. Cutting them out of the diet allows the inflamed gut and an inflamed body to heal.

2.

Reduce inflammation. Inflammation is the common thread connecting most chronic disease including cancer. In fact, out-of-control inflammation causes insulin resistance, which, as we now know, is the main factor in all these diseases apart from autoimmunity and allergy. The insulin resistance then creates even more inflammation, and the whole biological house burns down. Besides removing sugar and food sensitivities like gluten and dairy, we want to eat plenty of anti-inflammatory foods, including omega-3 rich foods like wild fish and flaxseeds.

3.

Improve gut health. Cancer often originates in your gut. Not just colon cancer, but with many cancers. We are currently studying about the gut microbiome and breast and prostate cancers. Beyond avoiding inflammatory foods, adding in probiotics, prebiotics, and lots of phytonutrients, like curcumin (found in turmeric) and resveratrol (found in grapes), can reduce gut-based inflammation.

4.

Reduce toxic exposure. The average newborn has 287 chemicals in her umbilical cord blood, 217 of which are neurotoxic (poisonous to nerves or nerve cells). The chemicals these infants are exposed to include pesticides, phthalates, bisphenol A, flame retardants, and heavy metals such as mercury, lead, and arsenic. These chemicals have a broad range of negative effects on human biology; they damage the nervous system and increase the risk of cancer, and now they have been shown to contribute to obesity. Going clean and green means becoming more aware about how environmental toxins affect your health. I encourage you to visit the Environmental Working Group (EWG) to learn more.

5.

Change your thoughts to change your immune system. Science is now proving what we all knew intuitively — that how we live, the quality of our relationships, the food we eat, and how we use our bodies determines much more than our genes ever will. There are numerous strategies to combat or prevent cancer, including getting sufficient sleep, controlling stress levels, and exercising regularly.

The important thing is to figure out what works for you and develop a plan to stick with it. That might involve working with a Functional Medicine doctor or a chronic disease specialist.

Conclusion

Whether you have been diagnosed with cancer or have become concerned about family and friends being diagnosed, the most important thing is mindset and not playing into fear.

While we all hope there will one day be a miracle cure for cancer, there are things that we know now will combat cancer or keep our quality of life high while our body is fighting the cancer.

The science of cancer genetics is changing. Two people who have the same cancer could be completely different in terms of how the cancer performs. That’s why I’m very excited about the work that Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong is doing in California on the cancer genome and creating targeted therapies to treat the cancer in every patient individually. This and other emerging technologies, combined with the Functional Medicine approach to cancer, give me great hope about our ability to further prevent and treat this disease in the future.

I encourage you to think about cancer differently and more importantly, not lose hope.

Stay healthy, everyone! -Maria

MARIADORFNERBLACKANDWHITEHEADSHOT    Maria Dorfner (formerly Pallante Bianco) is the founder of MedCrunch, covering What’s Hot in Health.

At 24, she helped launch CNBC after working full-time at NBC for two years and part-time throughout college. She then joined Ailes Communications as director of research and producer for TV pilots successfully syndicated. She then co-anchored and senior produced several health series airing on CNBC for three years. She wrote, produced and directed medical documentaries for Discovery Health Channel and helped launch the Cleveland Clinic News Service.  She is the owner of NewsMD Communications, a full-service production company specializing in health content and distribution. She is the author of three books.  Her awards include an Outstanding Leadership Abilities and Commitment to the Advancement of Women in Media award from her alma mater and a Media Recognition Award from the American Heart Association for her “Heart Smart” series and a Medical Reporting Scholarship. Maria is in Who’s Who in American Women, 22nd edition, 2000/2001.  She is a native of Brooklyn, New York.  Her health blog is a division of Healthy Within Network, which is her existing labor of love.  It connects the dots in medicine, media and marketing.  Contact:  maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

Hip-Hop Legend Rev Run & his wife Justine on Adult Diabetes

It’s Diabetes Awareness Month.  More than 1 in 3 Americans is at risk for diabetes, and it doubles for African-Americans.

It’s one of the reasons one of the most iconic figures in music is passionate about raising awareness about risk factors for adult diabetes. Another reason is his father has it, which also places him at risk. His manager’s father also had it. Since 5,000 new people are diagnosed each day, he wants to make sure everyone gets screened. Rev Run is not only a legend in Hip-Hop, front man for RUN DMC, selling tens of millions of records worldwide, but he is widely credited for ushering rap music into the mainstream culture. He also starred in MTV’s “Run House,” co-authored several books and is a sought after DJ and speaker.

His latest venture is teaming with The Novo Nordisk Ask Screen Know Campaign to help people know if they are at risk and to share tips on making healthy changes at home. He has created a website called askscreenknow.com to raise awareness and help others take precautions just as he is doing.

[On Getting Screened] “I tell people do it for the ones you love…I look in my children’s eyes and realize I can be neglecting my health and hurt everybody in my family.” -Rev Run

Joining him is wife, Justine Simmons.  Justine is an accomplished author, jewelry designer on HSN, co-author of a best-selling book with her husband, philanthropist and loving wife and mom.  Justine also works with the Simmons family charity organization helping children with art resources.  She joins Rev Run in urging people to take a Risk Assessment Test and discusses how they keep their family healthy since they are at high risk for adult diabetes.

[On Men Being Afraid to Get Tested] “You hear about these men passing (away) and it could have been prevented.” -Justine Simmons

To learn more and find out if you are at risk please visit: http://www.AskScreenKnow.com

Rev Run & Justine Simmons

CLICK HERE FOR INTERVIEW:  Hip-Hop Legend Rev Run & his wife Justine on Adult Diabetes

 

Risk Factors for Adult Diabetes include:diabetes51

1.  Age 45 or older

2.  Race/Ethnicity

3.  Diabetes in Family

4.  Lack of Physical Activity

5.  Being Overweight

6.  High Blood Pressure

       SYMPTOMS:

diabetes1

FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT:   http://www.AskScreenKnow.com

As Rev Run and Justine say, “Do it for the ones you love.”

diabetes52

headshot  Maria Dorfner is an award-winning health journalist and the founder/CEO of Healthy Within Network (HWN). Her stories have appeared on NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, Fox, CNBC and Discovery Health.  Her new book, “Healthy Within” is available at http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/maria_dorfner

You can contact her at maria.dorfner@yahoo.com. MedCrunch is her blog covering what’s hot in health.

 

Healthy Father’s Day! by Maria Dorfner

Dad finds a Bocce court in Napa Valley and proceeds to give the boys from Pittsburgh a few tips.
Dad finds a Bocce court in Napa Valley and proceeds to give the boys from Pittsburgh a few tips.

 

Prior to Father’s Day, I like to reflect back to what my Dad was doing at my age. I am so grateful he was and still is involved in my life. Involved Dads make for smarter, happier kids.  I was definitely a happy kid.  I don’t know about smart.  I was a straight B+ student at Saint Ephrem’s. I only ever got an A in English, but I  wanted straight A’s like Grace, the smartest girl in class.  College had me getting a 4.0 only in English, Psych and Marketing.  Reminds me of the hilarious song in the Off-Broadway play Avenue Q called, “What Do You Do With a B.A. in English?”

Meantime, while I was busy trying but failing to get straight A’s, my Dad worked a bazillion hours, yet still managed to find time to spend with us.  Dad could have been the Tim Ferriss of Fathers and written “The 4-Hour Dad Week” because he was creative in terms of maximizing the minimum amount of time he had to spend with us.  He found time, even if it was a tad early.

I can still hear him yelling, “If you girls are ready at 3 a.m. I will drive you to college!!!  If you’re not ready, the car leaves without you!!!”  You girls were myself and my best friend, Rosemarie. We lived in Brooklyn and were starting Pace University in NYC, where our Dads worked in construction.  We still laugh at how we aced early bird Marketing because we had hours to kill studying.

Our Dads drove us each morning for four years, and even opened and closed the doors for us.  Chivalry was alive and well. Being earlybirds had benefits. We got to read the newspapers first and knew what was going on in the world before the rest of the world. Plus, no trains.

I’d been riding the subway since I was a kid.  I actually loved it, especially when the Big Apple came into view.  That faded when I had to learn to read people’s faces quickly or end up robbed or who knows what.  I grew up feeling safe until the infamous Son of Sam (David Berkowitz) terrorized our neighborhood by going on a brunette killing spree. The New York Post released a sketch of the suspect and it looked like everybody I knew.  Everybody.

So Dad, where were YOU last night at 0600 hours? Huh?

So, riding the subway suddenly meant sizing someone up quickly.  Roger Ailes who wrote my favorite book on Communication called, “You Are the Message” says you make your first impression within the first 5 seconds of meeting someone. Five seconds. 1…2…3…4…BAM. I got your number.  Our Dads already had this skill, and shared lots of stories while driving over the Brooklyn Bridge.

No need to talk first. In fact, Roger and my former agent who sadly passed away, Alfred Geller turn off the volume when they watch someone on-camera. Geller did that with my tape and exclaimed I belong in the #1 market before turning up the volume on the TV monitor in his seminar.  You see someone before you hear them. It’s not about what someone looks like –it’s about their energy. Ralph Waldo Emerson said who you are speaks louder than anything you say. Same on NYC subway. Back then, it assaulted all sense of sight, smell, touch and hearing. Taste too because if you ate anything, you’d feel nauseous.

So, Rosemarie and I were OVERJOYED to plan our entire college schedules around getting a luxury, stress-free, safe ride to school.

More importantly, it was quality time with the Dads. We never knew what they would ask us, and they took an interest in our classes. They’re both funny too.  After my Dad’s construction job he returned home, removed his dirty boots outside, showered and ran out to run a restaurant.  By this time, I’d be taking a train at City Hall to head over to my job as a sales associate at Sak’s Fifth Avenue or Barnes and Noble on Fifth Avenue.

When my entrepreneurial Dad wasn’t working two jobs, he did not go to the gym for fitness. He didn’t run. He did not play golf. My Dad loved a TV show called, “Bowling for Dollars.” It must have inspired him to take up the sport. He excelled at it. Strikes every time.

Recently, I notice three fingers on his right hand are dented as if he is still holding a bowling ball. It’s hilarious. I ask him about it and he says it’s from all those years bowling. I’ve never seen anything like that.  He had an amazing dance and spin he did like Fred Flinstone’s twinkle toes, only on steroids.  The ball spinned soooooo incredibly fast. I loved watching that.

STRIKE!!!

He also played Bocce. Funny, it just hit me that’s bowling too. It’s bowling without pins. Dad’s favorite Bocce court was at Dyker Heights Golf Course. Lots of running from one side of the bocce court to the other, so that was his outdoor gym. After school, my cousin Josephine and I rode our bikes there to see our Dads play. If they were winning they gave us a dollar or two.

We loved Biking for Dollars. The apples do not fall far from the tree.

Our Dads always greeted us warmly. “Aaaay look who it is!!!” It was like the opening theme song to the TV Show “Cheers.” “…sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name…and they’re always glad you came…”

Subsequently, a study of Chinese parents finds warmth matters. It’s a father’s warmth toward his child that is the ultimate factor in predicting the child’s future academic success. Imagine that.

In fact, involving fathers from the start in children’s lives has a significant positive impact on their development, including the greater economic security of having more than one parent. They call it the “father effect.” Involved fathers are present, even when they can’t physically be there. Mothers play a role in letting kids know what their Dads are doing and when they can spend time together.

Moms can also be The Mole at times. If my Dad asked a question, I knew that he knew that I knew The Mole already told him the answer. The words, “Wait until your father gets home” were serious business. But discipline meant he was involved. And as mentioned previously, studies say “involved dads” make for smarter, happier kids.

Sunday dinners with Dad after church was when we each were excited (or scared!) to fill him in on what we were doing. It was also when he did his Rain Man thing of asking, “Quick! How much is 345 + 7890 – 4498 + 8768 – 2?”

I didn’t know he was preparing me to be a researcher on The McLaughlin Show. The host of the politically-oriented talk show, John McLaughlin would yell out, “Gut this encyclopedia and do it in two seconds!” By the time I was director of research for Roger Ailes, I was like a human Google search engine.

Turns out, I have Dad to thank for that because him being present during those dinners was healthy for my brain. Numerous studies find children growing up in a household with a father present show superior outcomes in intelligence tests. Although, I wonder if he cancelled that out with the beatings when we got home late. Ha!

Back to the IQ advantage. It’s attributed to the way fathers interact with their children. Outdoor activities and playing with kids outweigh language-based ones. So Dad showing me how to play bocce and then yelling at me to get off the court expanded my brain more than the Italian Savant quizzing me during Sunday dinners. Interesting.

According to HappyChild.com.au a recent Canadian study from Concordia University finds girls whose fathers lived with them when they were age 6 to 10 demonstrate less anxiety when they are age 9 to 13. Being present is vital to having a positive impact and raising healthy kids.

Thank you to my Dad and to all the Dads out there who are and were present.  You’re loved and appreciated more than you know.

Healthy Father’s Day! I love you, Dad.

Love: What the World Needs Now by Maria Dorfner

oxy3 

 

Today, I talk to Paul J. Zak about health, love and morality.

Zak has done extensive research into discovering what chemical in our brain ultimately prompts us to love.

So much so, that this son of a prior Catholic nun has a new nickname.

paul-zak

Paul J. Zak is a scientist, prolific author, and public speaker. His book The Moral Molecule: The Source of Love and Prosperity was published in 2012 and was a finalist for the Wellcome Trust Book Prize.

He is the founding Director of the Center for Neuroeconomics Studies and Professor of Economics, Psychology and Management at Claremont Graduate University.

Dr. Zak also serves as Professor of Neurology at Loma Linda University Medical Center. He has degrees in mathematics and economics from San Diego State University, a Ph.D. in economics from University of Pennsylvania, and post-doctoral training in neuroimaging from Harvard.

He is credited with the first published use of the term “neuroeconomics.” He organized and administers the first doctoral program in neuroeconomics. Dr. Zak’s lab discovered in 2004 that the brain chemical oxytocin allows us to determine who to trust.

His current research has shown that oxytocin is responsible for virtuous behaviors, working as the brain’s “moral molecule.”

This knowledge is being used to understand the basis for civilization and modern economies, improve negotiations, and treat patients with neurologic and psychiatric disorders.

Dr. Zak’s work on relationships earned him the nickname “Dr. Love.”

Q & A with Paul J. Zak
oxy13
1.  First, what prompted you to write The Moral Molecule:  The Source of Love and Prosperity and what’s love got to do with it?

I think the oldest debate humans have had since we have been having debates is on whether our human nature is good or evil.  Think Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, etc.  We are really curious about this!

Of course, most of us can be incredibly kind and sometimes nasty.  I wanted to see if I could find a “switch” in the brain from naughty to nice and figure out what turns this switch on and off.  And, my mother, before she was my mother, was a Catholic nun.  So, growing up I was given a very black and white view of morality.

But, my observation was that morality was more situational.  So, I basically spent 10 years of research so I could argue better with my mother (!).  Based on research done on rodents, I hypothesized that the mammalian neurochemical oxytocin might be the moral molecule. My experiments (and replications and extensions by many others) have shown a key role for oxytocin in motivating positive social behaviors.  Oxytocin is sometimes called the “love molecule” as it sustains romantic bonds and motivates care for offspring.

So, love makes us moral.  I think my mom would agree with this!

oxy4
2.  Absolutely.  How does positive touch and psychological support promote health?

Oxytocin motivates moral behaviors–even among strangers–by making us feel empathy where we share the emotions of others.

It promotes human interactions by reducing stress responses and thereby improving the immune systems.  Perhaps surprisingly, it is other people who keep us healthy (and, we’ve shown, happy).

We need connections, our brains and bodies crave it. We have shown that touch releases oxytocin.  So, I recommend 8 hugs a day.  Hug a stranger–its good for them and for you.

healthylove
hugs
3.  I’m Italian, so hugs come naturally. What if someone is alone?  Can they raise oxytocin levels?

Loneliness is stressful for social creatures like humans.  But, people who are alone can “hack” the oxytocin/connection system in several says.First of all, get a pet.  Our experiments have shown that dogs are better oxytocin promoters than are cats, but any pet is probably good.Second, use social media.  We have shown in experiments that social media of all types cause oxytocin release.  Third, massage is very healthful and causes oxytocin release (or start hugging people).

Lastly, nearly any activity that people do together can cause oxytocin release, including singing, dancing, going to movies, riding a roller coaster and especially helping others.

All these behaviors can “train the brain” to be better at connecting to people by increasing our oxytocin release.

oxy21
 
4.  Great tips.  All in moderation.  In your book you say love is also the source to prosperity. Let’s talk about that.  I read 90% of well-educated men who have graduated from college are ready for marriage between the ages of twenty-six to thirty-three-years-old.  These are the high commitment years.  Studies show a never married man at age forty-two becomes a confirmed bachelor.  Is oxytocin higher during the high commitment years making them able to trust and bond, as  older men get jaded?

High testosterone, our experiments have shown, is a powerful oxytocin inhibitor.  Testosterone falls in men after age 30 or so.  It also falls when men are in committed relationships and when they have children.  So, younger men may need a romantic partner to “tame” them so they can better attach to others.

Like any other brain system (or the French you took in 5th grade), the brain reduces the energy spent to maintain brain pathways that are little used.  Low attachment opportunities may make it harder in the future to find a mate.  A dog, though, is a good place to start.  Dogs also make being approached by strangers easier.  Go dogs!

dog2
5.  Pets are amazing.  How about studies that consistently find a significant correlation between length of marriage and wealth accumulation?  Most millionaires are and stay married.  According to Dr. Thomas J. Stanley, author of “The Millionaire Mind” millionaires and those who will probably attain this status have a unique ability to select mates with a certain set of qualities:  Honest, Responsible, Loving, Capable & Supportive.  Does love keep you healthy AND wealthy?  If so, how?
 

Married men work harder, make more money, are happier, and live healthier and longer.  This is likely due to the anxiolytic effects of oxytocin.

High wealth men tend to have higher testosterone, so both marriage partners need to make love/romance a committment to keep the flame of oxytocin alive.

dog3
6. I’ve also read certain foods release oxytocin naturally.  Namely, pasta with garlic and tomato sauce,  (happy to hear as an Italian!) plums, apples, turkey, fish, eggs, cheese, nuts, cottage cheese, chick peas, oregano and another favorite, chocolate!  Have I left anything out?
Actually, oxytocin is such a primitive molecule we never run out of its building blocks.  Foods rich in phytoestrogens can make us more sensitive to oxytocin (perhaps by increasing oxytocin receptors though this has not been shown in humans yet).  These foods include soy, broccoli, tea, wine.
oxy16
7.  What are some more natural ways of releasing this love hormone to stay healthy? (i.e. pets, warm bath, soothing music)
Besides those listed above, moderately stressful events like travel or riding a roller coaster will raise oxytocin.  The best way to spike one’s
oxytocin is sex in a committed relationship.  Cuddling, holding hands, kissing will all do it.  Warm temperature helps, as does sharing a meal.
barbecue7
8.  Nice.  Why hasn’t everyone been prescribed oxytocin in the nasal spray form to boost their well-being?
The spray inhibits the brain’s ability to control the release of oxytocin.  The brain’s oxytocin system is finely tuned so that oxytocin is released when we have a positive social interaction and then release is shut off.  You don’t want to leave the trust switch turned “on” at all times, this could be dangerous.  There is also evidence in animals that long-term oxytocin treatment can damage oxytocin receptors so the trust-empathy system could, over time, begin to fail.
9.  Interesting. Recently, there have been studies linking oxytocin with having a healthier body image. What are your thoughts on it being used as a treatment for anorexia, body dysmorphia or any other number of body image disorders?
My lab has done many studies of oxytocin replacement therapy.  For short to moderate periods of time, in combination with counselling, this is an appropriate approach for some patients with body imaging disorders.  The first line treatment would be with SSRIs like Prozac or Paxil and it turns out that this class of drugs moderately increases oxytocin in the brain.
oxy1
10.  Prescription drugs can have serious side effects so I’d like to focus on natural ways to release oxytocin. If someone were to begin doing all the natural things you mention, how long would it take them to begin feeling better and healthier?

Almost immediately!  Oxytocin is released in about 1 second after a positive contact.  If you follow Dr. Love’s (my nickname) prescription of 8 hugs a day, then you are training the brain to release oxytocin more easily.

That’s the key to being happier and healthier (and exercise and eat well wouldn’t hurt, either).

THAT ENDS OUR INTERVIEW. THANK YOU DR. ZAK FOR JOINING US.  THANK YOU FOR READING. -Maria
healthylife
If you’d like to learn more about Paul J. Zak’s amazing work visit http://www.pauljzak.com or watch his Global TED Talk at link below.
oxy33

Top 10 Healthy Habits from Mom by Maria Dorfner

Image

This weekend, my family and I were at a hospital with my sister, who had minor surgery.  All went well.  As we were leaving, my 74-year-old Mom said the last time she stepped inside a hospital was when my brother was born.  Dead silence.

We all exclaimed, “1969?”  That’s right. Forty-three years ago.  Wow.  My niece asked, “Nonna…haven’t you ever broke a bone?”  No, she did not.  We all laughed and I asked, “Ma, what’s your secret?”  Let’s take a look.

That’s Mom and I on the beach in Cali. She’s telling me not to worry about water washing over my new tennis shoes.  Healthy Habit Numero Uno is probably: Don’t worry. 🙂

1.  SLEEP.  Mom turns in no later than 10 p.m. each night.  She wakes at 7:30 a.m.  Naturally. No alarm clock.  No uninterrupted sleep, except for her Italian Romeo.  Dad? TMI, Mom!  That’s 9 and a 1/2  hours of sleep per night.  Give or take an hour for Amore…

2.  BREAKFAST.  She never skips breakfast. She eats a bowl of Cheerios cereal with 1% milk, one sliced banana, 1/2 a grapefruit and one cup of coffee. Every other day, she has a bowl of oatmeal, 1/2 a grapefruit and a cup of coffee.

3.  VITAMINS.  She takes one multi-vitamin for active women over 50 & one calcium vitamin daily.

4.  EXERCISE.  At 8:15 a.m. she drives to the nearby Community Center Gym.  She walks for 1.5 miles on the treadmill, rides the stationary bike for 10 minutes, then uses various machines like the rowing machine, arm pulls and uses two 5 lb. weights to do 3 sets of 10 arm lifts on each side. The entire workout is one-hour long.  She wraps at 9:30 a.m.  She does this routine 4 days a week, Monday through Thursday.  And she’s been doing it for 4 years now, since she retired from working. Mom says I inspired her, but she gets major props for commitment.

5.  EAT DINNER EARLY. EAT WELL.  At noon, she begins preparing dinner. Dinner is always between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. each day.  It consists of some type of fish, such as salmon with lots of steamed vegetables on the side. One day a week, Mom makes steak with a giant salad. On Sunday, she cooks a traditional Italian meal, which always includes pasta and an assortment of other dishes.

I’m thinking after Sunday’s weekly festivities –they’re good for the week.  If she gets hungry after dinner, she’ll have an apple or other fruit. She loads her refrigerator with lots of fresh fruit for snacking.  She loves to bake cakes and Italian cookies, but saves it for when company comes over or to enjoy once in awhile when her and my Dad feel like having dessert. No lunch, but after dinner there is always leftover food placed in the refrigerator, which they warm up if they’re still hungry.

6.  VINO.  Mom doesn’t drink any soda.  She has one glass of red wine with dinner each night. It’s either home made wine from one of Mom’s brother’s, Orazio or Pasquale or my Dad’s brother, Bonafacio.  Otherwise, it’s from The Wine of the Month Club compliments of their son in California.

7.  SKINCARE.  Mom has beautiful skin, so I tossed this in. She says she uses Dove soap to cleanse her face and a daily and nightly moisturizer from Loreal. She doesn’t wear makeup unless she’s going to a party. I asked her if she’d ever consider cosmetic surgery and had to keep from laughing because I already knew the answer. She waved her Italian hands in the air and in an Italian accent said, “Oh noooooo, nooooo, no for me. You have to be natural.”

8.  PRAY.  Each day, Mom says the rosary. And she attends Mass every Saturday evening.  She reads a lot of spiritual books and underlines things to share with us kids.

  [photo: Mom with one of her sisters –lots more! & two of her brothers. They’re all a hoot!]

9.  SOCIALIZE.  Mom spends a lot of time with Dad since retiring. I should probably call this LOVE & LAUGHTER.  They eat breakfast and dinner together daily, and in the evenings they enjoy watching NBC News with Brian Williams followed by International News on the Italian channel, RAI.  That’s followed by an Italian movie and the Italian version of the game show, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.  They laugh a lot together and have fun calling out the answers.  Mom has 8 siblings. Dad has 6 siblings.  Laughter is a big part of family gatherings too.  So, if they want company there is always someone to visit or call. Celebrating holidays and milestones is a biggie. Every now and then, Mom has neighbors or friends from the Community Center Gym over for lunch.

[photo: Mom with two of her brothers at the Annual Family Pool Party. There are a lot more. Love them!]

10. PASSIONS. When I ask Mom what she loves, she says she loves her family. Her second love is gardening. It reminds her of the farm she grew up on in Italy. She loves planting her vegetable garden, which includes tomatoes, zucchini and eggplant. In the Summer, she loves creating meals with all the fresh vegetables. She also loves planting flowers.

Finally, I asked Mom what advice she’d give to anyone wanting to maintain healthy habits. She said, “Be strong and have faith.”  That’s it. There you have it.  The daily habits of a woman who has no intention of ever being in a hospital, unless she’s a visitor.  We love you, Mom!! Stay healthy.  🙂

Also, make a note that ITALY ranked number 10 on the CIA’s life expectancy list. According to the World Factbook, compiled by the Central Intelligence Agency, Italy is one of the Top 10 nations that seem to have discovered the secret to longevity.  All 4 of my wonderful Grandparents lived to 87 years of age. One Grandpa (Nonno) chain-smoked non-filtered cigarettes, which means Grandma (Nonna) was exposed to the second-hand smoke. They died one-day apart at age 87. So, I reckon good genes play a role in longevity too –as I imagine if he hadn’t smoked he’d have lived till 100.  But all 4 were healthy their entire lives –never had to live in an old age home or be in a hospital, and they were surrounded by SO much LOVE.  Family, Love & Laughter with values passed to over 30 Grandchildren. So much LOVE.

My Grandparents were romantic and loving until the end.  We learned how to love from observing them.  They weren’t into materialism. They weren’t superficial.  They communicated with each other with honesty and respect.  They cared for each other in little ways every single day.  They bickered, but with humor.  We saw them resolve disagreements in loving ways.  They laughed a lot. They were happy always surrounded by family, friends in the community.  They shared life’s ups and downs and they listened to everyone’s problems without judgment. We all felt safe and secure around them.  They didn’t even speak English.  Yet, over 30 Grandchildren communicated with them and observed their HEALTHY HABITS.  The more complicated life gets –the more we realize they had it right.

A healthy life, indeed.

10. Italy

Average Life Expectancy: 81.86 years

Italians live an average of 3.37 years longer than Americans. Many experts draw a connection between their longevity and diet–which is more than just pasta, meat, and cheese. The Mediterranean diet is credited with lowering the risk for all sorts of diseases. The antioxidants found in olive oil and red wine–two key features of an Italian meal–can improve cholesterol, prevent blood clots, and stave off heart disease, according to the American Heart Association. Italians also rely on spices like basil, oregano, and garlic to flavor their cuisine, while Americans depend heavily on salt. As such, Italians improve their odds against high blood pressure and stroke.

[See: Mediterranean Diet–What You Need to Know]

Meet The Chief Wellness Officer at The Cleveland Clinic: Dr. Michael Roizen

By Janet Podolak

 

Drinking milk can cause cancer.

Cheap yellow mustard may prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

Heavy cardio workouts can reverse Parkinson’s disease.

MichaelRoizen

These statements by Dr. Michael Roizen caused his audience to sit up and take notice. Folks were attending a Healthy Foods class hosted in Chester Township by Loretta Paganini.

michaelroizen1

The chief wellness officer at Cleveland Clinic, Roizen believes that diet, exercise and lifestyle changes can reverse health problems, even those inherited as part of family history.

michaelroizen6.jpg

 

“We’re at our peak around 30, and it’s downhill from there,” he told the 80-person group gathered at the International Culinary Arts & Sciences Institute. He said a Harvard study by doctors confirms the loss of 5 percent of mental and physical function every 10 years after age 30. But that’s not inevitable, he said.

“After 30, it’s choices that make those determinations, and the food you eat can turn on good genes and turn off bad ones,” he said.

michaelroizen5

A researcher whose work as an author and speaker commands widespread attention, Roizen says he loves what he does — and that loving what you do is one of his secrets to a longer, healthier life.

nutrition1

“Dr. Roizen has changed the character of the Cleveland Clinic and has made believers out of people like me,” said Dr. Emil Paganini, a retired nephrologist at the clinic who has joined his wife’s Chester Township culinary operation along with doing medical consultation work. He gained 80 pounds after adopting a more sedentary lifestyle, but in the past six months has shed 50 pounds and increased his stamina and muscle tone with diet and exercise

“Anyone can do it,” Roizen told the group.

michaelroizen3

He’s personally delivered health care to eight Nobel Prize winners, 700 former smokers and more than 100 Fortune 500 CEOs.

michaelroizen2

“Your genes make protein, and with healthy eating you can change them,” he said, beginning a slide presentation showing before-and-after photos of a man who followed Roizen’s better health protocol for 28 days. The 50-something diabetic’s health was so bad he was verging on a stroke.

cdc14

“In just 28 days he lost weight, brought his blood sugar down from 175 to 99, and nearly normalized his blood pressure,” Roizen said. “To do that, he quit smoking, gave up meat and animal products, did 15 minutes of meditation morning and evening, and walked 10,000 steps a day.”

walking

Roizen doesn’t claim the protocol is easy but says it’s life-saving.

Trainer Jaime Brenkus, who is based at Slim & Fit Personal Weight Loss and Fitness in Concord Township, says the resolve for true change is motivated by one of two things.

health6

“Motivation comes from either the desire to change one’s image or a combination of pain and fear,” Brenkus said.

He works with the Paganini family members on their own fitness goals and said he came to Roizen’s presentation in search of information and inspiration.

roizenbook2

Roizen, who regularly reviews clinical trials and other professional findings, is perhaps best-known for his “RealAge” books about turning back the biological clock, and the “YOU” series authored with colleague Dr. Mehmet Oz.

He researches in real-life scenarios, such as spending time at a call center where, he said, the daily stress level is 22 times higher than in daily life.

stress

Reducing stress is a key component to any health plan, and exercise and meditation are just part of the answer, he said. He said loving what you do and having supportive friends are just as important.

michaelroizen17

“The whole obesity epidemic began in the 1980s when we got the idea that it’s OK to eat anything, anytime, anywhere,” he said. “But good health isn’t ‘Let’s Make a Deal.’ There are things we just should not eat.”

soda1

The theory that “just a little” of a forbidden food won’t do any harm is a fallacy, he said.

“One ounce of Pepsi is not going to hurt, but who do you know who can stop with one ounce?” he said.

healthy

He has a similar reaction to news that wine can be good for you.

“Alcohol can be good for the blood but is bad for the immune system,” he said. “And with 17 percent of drinkers ending up with addiction, it just doesn’t make sense to start drinking if you don’t drink.”

foodcomaHe said sugar, which can be addictive because it releases “feel-good” dopamine into the body just as heroin and cocaine do, is one of those substances best eliminated.

“High levels of blood sugar that result in diabetes cause the same lesions on the brain as Alzheimer’s does. So avoiding added sugars is critical for health.”

foodcoma1

The damage caused by saturated and trans fats has been proved, he said.

“That means no french fries,” he said, noting deep fryers have been eliminated at Cleveland Clinic. “We now have 48 of them for sale.”

WALK2

Walking 10,000 steps a day measured by a pedometer is a behavior to embrace, he said.

“Ten thousand steps is the point at which sugars in the blood are converted,” he said. “Not 7,000, not 12,000, but 10,000 steps every day.”

exercise1

Hard physical exercise — 21 minutes at least three times a week — has been shown to improve memory function in addition to fitness levels.

exercise4

A surprise finding came from a bicycle competition in which Parkinson’s patients were on the rear of tandem bikes pedaled by athletes.

bikeriding1

“We discovered that 30 minutes of vigorous exercise three times a week led to a remission of Parkinson’s in 70 percent of them,” Roizen said.

And as for his “cheap mustard” statement regarding Alzheimer’s?

“Cheap yellow mustard is loaded with turmeric instead of mustard seed,” he said. “Everything eaten in India is made with turmeric, and there’s a zero rate of Alzheimer’s there.”

healthy1

 

Roizen’s tips for improved health

Eliminate:

— Added sugar

— Added corn syrup

— Simple carbohydrates found in most flours

— Saturated fats

— Trans fats

— Dairy products including cheese

Add:

— 900 milligrams DHA, found in omega 3, preferably from algae

— 1,200 milligrams Vitamin D3

— 600 milligrams calcium with magnesium

— Probiotics

— 2 baby aspirin taken with warm water.

Behaviors to embrace:

— Floss teeth

— Sleep 61⁄2 to 8 hours a day

— Know your blood pressure and strive for 115 over 75

— Have a buddy for workouts

— Learn to like black coffee and soy milk

— Find something you love and do it every day.

michaelroizen10

Excellent advice.  It’s no wonder that in 2007, Dr. Roizen was named Chief Wellness Officer at Cleveland Clinic, a world-class leader in medicine, research, education, technology and innovation. It is the first such position in a major healthcare institution in the United States.

michaelroizen14

For More Information on the Cleveland Clinic Wellness visit:

http://www.myclevelandclinic.org/wellness.com

And be sure to check out all of Dr. Roizen’s amazing books on Amazon at:

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_0_14?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=michael+roizen&sprefix=michael+roizen%2Caps%2C299

They include:

 

roizenbook2     roizenbook1

 

ccf9

 

healthy1

Stay healthy!

MARIA DORFNER  is founder of NewsMD and Healthy Within Network. This is her blog.

She can be reached at maria.dorfner@yahoo.com and on Twitter: Maria_Dorfner

Coming Full Circle by Maria Dorfner

Meet Gregory Oliver.

In 1954, five-year-old Gregory Oliver is stricken with polio.  He is rushed to Muhlenberg Regional Medical Center in Plainfield, New Jersey, where an iron lung keeps him alive for months.  He survives.

Twenty years later, Oliver attends medical school in Washington, D.C., where he stays on to do his surgical training.  His area of interest is colorectal surgery.  A surgeon encourages Oliver to apply to a hospital in New Jersey because they have one of the best colorectal training programs in the world.

Little did Oliver know the program is at Muhlenberg Regonal Medical Center, where he spent months in as  a young child.  Oliver says it took “all of a second” to make a decision in 1988.

Today, Gregory C. Oliver, M.D. is president of the hospital. Yes, president.  He is also a Board Certified colon and rectal surgeon.  The hospital ranks number one in training programs for colorectal surgery throughout the U.S.

Oliver says, “It really is important that all people be screened, even if they don’t have symptoms. It’s the key to preventing colorectal cancer.  Muhlenberg was there for me when I needed them most in 1954.  I hope to be there for other people now.”

He’s come full circle.

I recently learned on Quora that Deepak Chopra is following me. His bio says he did a clinical internship at Muhlenberg Regional Hospital in Plainfield, NJ right after immigrating to the U.S. in ’70.   I lived there 10 years, and helped raise over $10M for their nursing school, now located in JFK Medical center.  I met Gregory Oliver through Plainfield, NJ neighbors.  Chopra’s book, The 7 Laws of Spiritual Success is an absolute little gem and favorite read of mine since the ’90’s.

Small world. Stay healthy, everyone! -Maria 🙂

gregory5

Gregory Oliver as a child

RELATED ARTICLES:

Are Nuts Good Medicine for Colorectal Cancer? May 17, 2017
http://www.webmd.com/colorectal-cancer/news/20170517/nuts-good-medicine-for-colon-cancer-survivors#1
__________________________________________________________________________________

  • 8 Colon Cancer Risk Factors Everyone Needs to Know About
    BY Jenn Sinrich
    May 19, 2017

    Colon cancer is a serious diagnosis. Do you know how to recognize it early on?

    Though colon cancer remains one of the leading causes of cancer death in America, the good news is the overall rates have been declining among patients who are over 50 years old.

    But recent studies, including one in the February 2017 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, have shown a rise in colorectal cancer among patients between 20 and 30 years old.

    And the actual diagnosis is just part of the problem.

    “Another issue is these younger patients with colorectal cancer run the risk of getting diagnosed later in the course of their disease when the cancer may be untreatable,” Cedrek McFadden, M.D., double board certified colorectal surgeon and clinical assistant professor of surgery at the University of South Carolina School of Medicine, said in an interview with The Cheat Sheet.

    “This happens because doctors don’t typically consider colorectal cancers high in their diagnosis for symptoms at such a young age.” Instead, they may assume symptoms may be related to hemorrhoids.

    Most people are supposed to start screenings around age 50, however, several risk factors may encourage your doctor to recommend you start earlier. Here are eight colon cancer risks to keep on your radar.

    1. Age
    Aged patient receives the visit of a female black doctor
    Your risk goes up as you age.
    While it is possible for colon cancer to occur at any age, your chances of developing it increase dramatically after the age of 45.

  • According to Cancer Treatment Centers of America, 95% of all colorectal cancers occur in patients older than 45.
  • Dr. Thomas Imperiale, a gastroenterologist based in Indiana, tells us the risk just about doubles each decade going forward from age 50 to 80.
  • The number one way you can protect yourself is to get screened regularly after age 50, unless you have a family or personal history that requires you to get screened sooner.2. Race or ethnicityRace can make a surprising difference in terms of risk.

    Though researchers are still trying to determine the reasons why, race does seem to play a role in risk for colon cancer.

    African Americans have the highest risk of developing colorectal cancer — 20% higher than non-African Americans, McFadden says.

    The reason for this finding is unclear, but possible causes include biologic or genetic links or even lower screening rates,” he added.

  • According to Cancer.Net, this increased risk is evident for both black men and women. Because of this increased risk, screening for African Americans may begin at age 45.3. Personal or family history
    Family history plays a big role in how likely you are to get colon cancer.

    Having a personal or family history of colorectal cancer or colorectal polyps may increase a patient’s risk, according to Cancer Treatment Centers of America.

    Because of this, patients must undergo aggressive and more frequent screening.

    “More specifically, patients who have a previous personal history of genetic inherited syndromes, such as FAP, familial adenomatous polyposis, or Lynch syndrome, just to name a few, have an exponentially high risk when compared to the average population in developing colon cancer along with high risk of developing another type of cancer elsewhere in the body,” said Samir Shah, M.D., who specializes in colon cancer and colorectal surgery.

    4. Inflammatory intestinal conditions

    Have IBS? You may need to start screenings earlier on.

    Individuals with inflammatory bowel disease, such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease, may develop chronic inflammation of the large intestine, which Cancer.Net says increases their risk of colorectal cancer.

    Extensive colitis from these diseases can increase the risk five- to 15-fold compared to the general population,” Dr. McFadden said. He advises patients with these diseases to work with their primary care provider to ensure they have access to more intense colonoscopies that can fully evaluate the presence of precancerous polyps.

    5. Gender

    Men are mores susceptible.

    For unknown reasons, men have a slightly higher risk of developing colon cancer than women.

  • According to Imperiale, it’s about 80% higher than women at the same age, which could be due to a number of undocumented and under-researched factors like lifestyle or diet tendencies.Still, the recommended age for screening is 50.So, regardless of your gender, you should speak with your doctor about when you should begin annual screenings.

    6. Obesity
    Woman trying to close jeans button with difficult from fat
    Carrying around too much weight makes you more likely to get cancer. |

    Being overweight and living a sedentary lifestyle increases a person’s risk for cancer and diseases of all kinds, including colon cancer.

    “There may be an increased risk with weight gain between early adulthood and midlife as opposed to between midlife and older adulthood,” explained McFadden.

    “Clearly, maintaining a healthy weight is beneficial to the patient in decreasing the risk of colorectal cancer.”

    FOR MORE on LIST PLEASE VISIT
    http://www.cheatsheet.com/health-fitness/colon-cancer-risk-factors-everyone-needs-to-know.html/?a=viewall

  • Colorectal Cancer Symptoms (cancercenter.com)