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.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Eggs for Diabetics

I have been visiting the diabetic nurse lately.  She chided me on how many carbohydrates I put in my breakfast, and suggested an egg or two for protein.  It is so easy to get into the carb habit for breakfast--cake, breakfast roll or cereal with milk.  There are better choices.  I found an article about the benefits of eggs, "8 Egg-cellent facts about eggs."
1. Eggs can be hearth healthy.  The big issue has been egg yolks, which hide a lot of cholesterol.  However dietary cholesterol generally does not cross over, and egg yolks have healthy nutrients.  No cholesterol in egg whites.
2. Eggs are a weight-loss super food.  Eggs are high in protein and low in  calories.  Consequently they can curb hunger with just a few calories.  Plus you can add vegetables to a scrambled egg for more nutrients.
3. Eggs are nutrient-rich.  Consider the vitamins in an egg.  The are a good source of zinc and vitamin A.  For a vegetarian who eats eggs they provide vitamin B12.
4. Egg size and color come to the chicken.  In other words there are varieties, but no real different in the actual egg.  Color and size have to do with color and size of the chicken laying the egg.
5. Dyed Easter Eggs is an ancient tradition.  People have been dying eggs for centuries.  These eggs are part of Jewish and Easter traditions.  Dyed eggs are safe to eat if they have been refrigerated.
6. Egg substitutes are healthy too.  These are usually egg whites with added color.
7. Are raw eggs safe to eat?  The risk with raw eggs is the threat of Salmonella which is a food born illness.  There is no loss in nutrients in cooking an egg, so no health benefit in eating raw eggs.  If speed is a question throw the egg in a mug and microwave for a minute.
8. The healthiest way to eat eggs.  There is really no difference in the egg with the type of preparation, other than some methods add calories.  Boiling and poached eggs do not add calories.  Another suggestion is using spray oil which adds minimal calories.
My issue with eggs is the rush I have in the mornings.  Consequently I usually boil a few eggs and then keep them in the fridge.  However the idea of cooking an egg in the microwave I need to try.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Screen Time: The Power is Yours

The Power Is Yours: Simple rules for supervising screen time, Scouting Magazine, March April 2018.

Simple rules:
Enjoy Screens:  Screens are not all bad.  They can bring games, and social interaction with family that is far away. 
Not Too Much:  Screen time can be limited by requiring credits for screen time.  Credits can be earned via chores.  Using screens before bed disrupts sleeps.  Good reason to turn them off an hour before bed and keep them out of the bedroom.
Mostly with Others:   Keeping screens out of the bedroom is big here.  Also doing activities together, such as family history, or research projects, or Instagram projects.
Lead by Example: You can lead by example by letting kids know what you are doing when you look at a screen during family time.  If you are overusing, then your kids will too.
Lastly, some age appropriate ideas:
No screen time under 18 months except for video chatting
18-24 months only age appropriate programs such as PBS which you watch with them and explain.
2 to 5 years: Limit screen time to less than an hour per day.  Watch with them so you can pause the programs and talk about things.
6 and older: Place limits and stick to your limits.  Agree on media-free times.

Sunday, August 5, 2018

7 Tips to Help You Stick With Exercise When Managing Type 2 Diabetes

This   article is  taken from  Everydayhealth.  I explore each bullet and how I am personally doing.
Exercise helps with weight loss; and weight loss helps to reduce your A1C.  Exercise can be as simple as walking.
1. Start slowly:  I am a walker, but my walking is still slow.  This article suggests working p to 30 minutes of brisk walking daily.  I need to add the brisk part.
2. Choose an activity you like:  I don't mind walking, and this is what I usually do.  However I would like to add some basketball and other enjoyable activities.
3. Grab a Friend:  I have failed with this regard.  Most of my walking is as I commute or as I play Pokemon during lunch.  I have not been able to interest anyone in exercising with me in the evening, even for a walk.
4. Reward Yourself Along the Way:  I have failed in this regard.  My reward is to go out to eat which defeats the whole process in the end.  This article suggest rewarding yourself with music.  This may be a better way to motivate myself.
5. Formally schedule you workouts:  Again I am not good here.  Of course commuting exercise is at the same time everyday.  However other exercise usually depends on the weather.  If it is too hot, I choose to read a book instead.  I would be  good to schedule exercise with a partner.
6. Prep for your workouts:  Again I haven't done this.    I do not lay out clothes as I am wearing work clothes. 
7. Check your blood sugar before and after exercise:  I have never done this.  This article says it is a good idea as the numbers should provide motivation to continue exercising. 

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Information on drowning/near drowning patients

This is from an e-mail newsletter at work.  
From May 10 to June 23, eight children were brought to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center for drowning incidents. Tragically two of these patients died. Children under the age of five are at the most risk of drowning, with 70% of drowning incidents last year involving children under 5 years of age.  Nurses in the Emergency Department and Pediatrics asked if community awareness could be raised to help reduce these preventable deaths and injuries. You can see the news release on HHS Connect News once the site is back up later today. More information will be posted to social media sites to bring even more attention to the issue and hopefully prevent additional child drownings.  As the weather warms up and more children are in and around water, it is important that we all do what we can to reduce fatal and nonfatal drownings.  You can help. Keep an eye out for our social media posts. Read and share the tips provided. Some of the key prevention tips include making sure children know how to swim and learning CPR. Please do what you can to bring more awareness to this issue so that every child can have a fun but safe summer! Thank you.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Black Widows

This flyer is from Santa Clara County Vector Control. 
Black Widows live under buildings, under rocks and in woodpiles and dense vegetation.  The can also be in storage sheds, under patio furniture and in dark hidden corners.  We use to have them in Cupertino, in the outside tool closet.  Bites cause mild to sever pain.  The can also cause muscle spasms, increased blood pressure and difficulty breathing.  For most people, symptoms will subside after a couple days.  Fr children and elderly medical attention should be sought.  A cold pack will lessen the pain.  Bites can be prevented by being alert moving a wood pile, shake out clothes that have been stored, dust and vacuum where spiders may hide, clean clutter in the garage, seal cracksk in windows and doors.
We also have tarantulas in our area.  They are shy and rarely bite.  When they do their bite is similar to a bee sting.  Brown Recluses are not in our area.  False Widows have mild venom. 

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Diabetes, Ten Mistakes in Monitoring Blood Sugar

This list is provided by Everyday Health.  I also document how I am doing as others may have the same issues.
1. Getting the wrong Meter.  Mine was given to me by the doctor so no issue here.  It works. 
2. Getting a meter not covered by your insurance.  See number one.  Mine was selected for me so it was covered.
3. Setting up the incorrect time and date.  I have no idea how to do this.  The staff at the diabetic clinic do this for me.  recently on a visit the meter was all off and the had to fix it for me.
4. Testing at the wrong time.  This is a big one for me, because I try to only test when I haven't eaten for three hours.  Sometimes it is hard to do.  Diabetic nurse says I should test first thing in the morning for sure.  I don't always get that done.
5. Not getting into a routine.  I am out of my routine.  I use to always test blood on the train ride home from work about five minutes before exiting the rain.  I am currently out of my groove.  Even when I am in a groove, I have difficulties on the weekend when I do not go through my regular routine.
6.Not cleaning our hands before checking you blood sugar.  This is something I had not really considered.  However I had worried about it a couple times.  However it makes sense.  Washing hands before measuring can give a more accurate reading.
7. Misusing you testing supplies.  Check the expiration dates of the test strips, and avoid reusing the lancets.
8. Testing your fingertip.  The fingertip is the most sensitive part of the finger.  Better to test on the side where it is not so painful.  Also best to change fingers so one isn't over used.
9.  Not staying hydrated.  If you are dehydrated  it can change your numbers.  I had never thought of this.
10. Not tracking your results.  I have never done this, other than what my machine does.  The office of the diabetic nurse use the monitor to get a recent record of my numbers.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

When You Fear Someone May Take Their Life

This pamphlet is from The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.  It is not big on graphics and pictures, but very good on the information provided.
90 percent of people who commit suicide are suffering from a treatable mental disorder including: depression, bipolar depression, alcohol abuse or dependence, schizophrenia, post traumatic stress, drug abuse, eating disorder or personality disorder.  Most of these disorders are recognizable and treatable.  Another telling sign for suicide risk is past attempts.  Access to easy means is also a risk factor. 
Things that could signal risk for suicide include suicide threats or threats to hurt others, looking for means to commit suicide, talking or writing about death and suicide plans.  Other warning signs include withdrawing form family and friends, increased alcohol or substance use, engaging in violent behaviors and acting reckless. 
If someone mentions they are suicidal it should be taken seriously.  Be willing to listen.  If you see signs don't be afraid to ask if the person is considering suicide.  Don's try to argue the person out of suicide. 
Seek professional help.  Persons contemplating suicide sometimes don't think they can get help, but there is help available.  In an acute crisis do not leave the person alone, remove means for suicide--fire arms, pills, knives, etc.  Take the person to a crisis center, or lacking this to the nearest hospital.  9-1-1 is always an option; as are suicide prevention lines.  1-800-273-8255 is a national hotline.  Santa Clara County the hotline is 1-855-278-4204.
Persons with suicidal thoughts often hesitate to seek treatment.  You can support them in seeking treatment.  Also medications have side effects and you can help them through this.  It is also important to stick with treatment.  The first medication is not always the right medication.