Health Is Vital

Health is taken for granted, until you can't any more. In this blog I hope to put down on paper some of the articles I come across and want to remember, about health. I will be personalizing these articles to apply to me. I am diabetic, over weight, have high blood pressure and tinnitus, so these are the things you will find here. I will include nutrition, exercise, and holistic health, and many other ideas. I work in the health profession, particularly mental health, and have an interest in suicide prevention; so these topics will also be covered in this blog. Please, if you are suffering reach out. Our county health and crisis line is 1-855-278-4204.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

The Opioid Epidemic

Mental Health First Aid in their blog Be the Difference is this month featuring articles on the opioid epidemic.  Some are very goo so I thought I would share them here. 
Polls Show Americans Understand the Opioid Crisis but Blame People with Addiction
This is a poll from Kaiser Foundation.  While this poll indicates people are paying attention to the problem, it also points to stigma still being an issue.  However the problem hits close to home.  Most Americans know someone addicted to pain killers.
#BeTheDifference This February: The Opioid Epidemic
This is a short article but makes a list of things you might do to help confront the opioid epidemic.  Some suggestions are read up by following their blog, and then sharing what you learn. 

(I will be adding more articles and ideas over the month)

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Six Best Midnight Snacks for Diabetics

Sometimes it is better to snack than not to snack.  A late night snack can curb a craving and help you get back to sleep.  However it is important to keep the carbohydrate down, usually under fifteen grams.  Some suggestions for salty cravings include:
Dry roasted or raw nuts.  Nuts do have carbohydrates, so moderation is key--a handful at most.  They also have fat, so as to curb any sugar spike.
Olives are another salty snack low in carbs and high in fat.  (Honestly I do not eat olives.)
Suggestions for savory cravings:
Vegetables and a spread.  Suggestions for a spread include hummus or peanut butter in moderation.  Also choose vegetables that are diabetic friendly.  (I love celery or carrots and peanut butter.)  Another choice to add protein to this snack is to include a boiled egg.
Cheese and crackers.  Try to pick whole-grain or wheat crackers.  A rule again is keep carbs under 15 grams.  Cheese and vegetables is another option.
Sweet snacks:
A sugar-free pudding is nice.  This is also a way to curb the chocolate craving.
Plain yogurt or Greek yogurt.  Store bought fruit added yogurts are not the best choice.  However you can add fruit or honey to plain yogurt.
A last piece of advise form this article is to check you blood sugar before and after snacks so you know how your body reacts to a particular snack.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Candy and Diabetes

What Candy Can People With Diabetes Eat and How Much Is Safe?  EveryDay Health  by Amy Gorin RDN, Reviewed by Kelly Kennedy RD.

So a good question for people with diabetes is candy?  I have always thought that candy is OK, but in moderation.  The issue being getting your carbohydrates without much in way of vitamins.  This article proposes a couple things.  Try to eat candy for dessert, so it is part of a meal and you eat when you are already full.  The other is promoting the fun-size version.  These are the candies often given out for Halloween.  The idea here is one or two is enough.  Candies with peanuts, M&M's, Reeses's, and Snickers tend to be healthier as the sugar jump is not as pronounced.  On the other hand, Skittle's and Twizzlers are almost pure sugar, and are good if your blood sugar is too low. 
So the answer is enjoy, but be careful.  If your sugar is already too high, you should avoid candy all together. 

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Emergency Preparedness Gifts to Consider

Gift Emergency Preparedness This Holiday Season

Build an Emergency Kit GraphicHelp your loved ones prepare this holiday season. Give them an item for their emergency kit.

Give someone on your list a gift that may one day save them during a disaster.

Pick an emergency item from the lists below or find more ideas

You might consider items for a roadside emergency, such as:
  • Jumper Cables
  • Tools – tire pressure gauge, screwdrivers, wrenches, pliers, shovel, ice scraper
  • Emergency Flares

For those with pets, supplies for a pet emergency kit:
  • Pet First-Aid Kit
  • Pet Carrier
  • An extra leash or harness

Visit to learn how to give a fully stocked emergency preparedness kit. 

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Article Review: Protect Your Brain

I found this article of all places, the Scouting magazine, November-December 2017.  By protecting you brain they are talking of doing things to help slow or prevent brain and memory issues as you age.  We all forget things sometimes.  In this case however they are referring to more serious issues.  Keeping your brain in such as state that it can grow and "rewire" is important as we age.  Mental exercise,  good diet, on positive lifestyle will help in this effort.  This article gives nine suggestions.  I present them with my self-review in each area.
Loss some weight:  Having a lot of belly fat, may indicate inflammation of other cells, including brain cells.  Less waist means less degeneration of the brain.
I have been overweight, "grossly obese" most of my adult life.  However, this past month I have lost five pounds!   Ten more to go to reach my first goal.  However with that being said I weigh less now than I have since moving to Cupertino fifteen years ago. 
Feed your neurons: Neurons are fed with better blood flow.  It is important to control blood pressure as well as sugar levels to improve the flow of blood to your brain.  I good way to accomplish this is through cardiovascular activity; 15 to 10 minutes minimum daily.
As for my part, being a commuter, I do this easily when I go to work.  It is those days in between that I have problems.  I walk plenty when I play Pokemon.  However this is slow walking and I wonder if it has as much benefit.
Lower your blood pressure: High blood pressure effects the blood flow and nutrients getting to your brain.  This can be critical as you age.
My blood pressure is well controlled at this time with medication.
Order the salmon...: Eating fish that is high in Omega-3 fatty acids (salmon tuna and others) is important to brain health.  People who eat three servings of fatty fish weekly have 40 percent less chance of developing Alzheimer's.  Other foods high in Omega-3 are walnuts and flaxseed.
I could use more fish in my diet.  I have walnuts at work, but do not eat them as regularly as I should.  Fish is a rare treat for me.  Somehow it has to be a more regular part of my diet.
...With a Side of Spinach:  Green vegetables are the key, as they are high in Vitamin K.  Two servings per day leads to a cognitively younger mind.
I can't say I eat a lot of leafy green vegetables.  My lettuce is usually iceberg or Romaine.  I need to make some improvements here.
Go blueberry picking:  Blueberries contain an antioxidant important with brain power.
I don't care for blueberries.  Fortunately this article also mentions strawberries which I love.  I also love raspberries.
Do Puzzles: Doing puzzles might help reduce the chances of contracting Alzheimer's.  Especially crosswords and Sudoku.
I am not into crosswords, but I do play Sudoko on the train at times.  I also play Free Cell solitaire, but I don't know if that helps or not.
Be Like Popeye:  Love Olive, in this case olive oil.  Extra virgin olive oil contains anti-oxidants.  Four tablespoons a day recommended.
I usually use dairy butter; but a change may be in order.
Make friends: Many friends improves performance on cognitive test given to the elderly.  I do not think this is casual Facebook friends, but friends with whom you mingle and associate.  ( I am better with Facebook.)  The positive effects are more evident in the areas where knowledge, language and factual information are stored.
I need to get out more that is for sure.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Grief: Jon Schmidt and Craig Aven

I think this movie can help those who are grieving; especially those ben to Christianity

If you’re missing someone this Christmas this song’s dedicated to you - ...

Jon Schmidt dedicates to those missing someone this Christmas.  I am missing my oldest sister, who passed away two years ago New Years Eve.  She was the life of our family, and kept things going.  There is still a void that hasn't been filled.  We visited the Buff clan for Christmas a few years ago.  tony made a snow man, Camberly met her great-grandmother who was staying with them at the time.  Sara, like my mother, had a way to make things right.

Lyrics: I’m not going to lie. Christmas really hurts this time Cause you’re not here to celebrate with me. Tears fill my eyes. And memories flood my mind, As I place your ornament upon our tree. Although this year I have a broken heart, It gives me hope and joy as I remember where you are. Chorus: You’re with the Son of God. You’re with the Prince of Peace. You’re with the one we’re celebrating And that thought amazes me. Sometimes I still break down, Grieving that we’re apart, But the sweetest gift is knowing where you are. You’re with the Son of God. Got your picture in a frame And a stocking with your name. Oh God knows it’s been hard letting go. And I can’t bring you back, But I’ll see you again. And oh, that thought is healing to my soul. I’ll miss making angels with you in the snow. I guess instead you will be singing with them All around God’s throne.

Chorus And I know the Christmas season Was your favorite time of year. You loved to help us decorate our tree. But now that you’re with Jesus, I can’t imagine how you feel Cause He’s the one who bled and died Upon the tree for you and me. Chorus