Focused On Fitness - May 31, 2007

   I hope that all of you had wonderful Memorial Day weekends and that due reverence was paid to all of the servicemen who have paid the ultimate sacrifice so that we can have long weekends and our traditional picnics. I also hope that it was a safe driving weekend for all of you.
   Speaking of picnics, in amongst the articles this week, I saw a cute quote about ants from Marie Dressler: "If ants are such busy workers, how come they find time to go to all the picnics?" With one of the featured articles this week about healthy picnic food, at least if there were ants, they were eating healthy!
   The good thing for you that Grace and Carly and I were at Clark's Pet Emporium on a field trip when I should have been doing the newsletter last week is that you get 6 articles and I write less, so let's get on with the newsletter!

Featured Articles 
   7 Substitutes for Picnic Diet Killers - It's almost summertime, which brings the incongruous collision of picnic season and swimsuit season. The weather's perfect for hiking, camping, barbecuing, and days at the beach lots of opportunities for outdoor exercise, but just as many opportunities to pig out at pool parties, luaus, outdoor festivals, and county fairs. Here are some foods to try avoiding during the dog days of summer and some ideas for substitutions for picnic favorites. Continued...
   Can You Be Thin and Fat? - Two stories about body fat have hit the wires recently and both deserve a deeper look than the headlines may indicate. The first is about a condition referred to as "skinny fat," which means that though your body mass index (BMI) may be normal, you're really out of shape. The second is about a book called Rethinking Thin: The New Science of Weight Loss—and the Myths and Realities of Dieting, which basically lays the blame of obesity on your family history. Continued...
   Save Yourself from Shin Splints - If I asked you to pound your entire body weight onto your hands, repeatedly, for an hour a day, six days a week, you'd probably tell me to get lost. Yet, if you're reading this, you probably do the exact same thing to your feet everyday when you work out, jog, or shoot hoops and if you're not careful about it, your feet will let you know they aren't too happy about it, via your shins. Doctors and physical therapists call this message Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome. We call it shin splints. Shin splints refer to pain in your tibia, or shinbone, and they are caused by overloading the bone and the connective tissue that attaches your muscles to the bone. There are a few reasons this happens. Continued...
   9 Questions About Food Allergies - Having an allergic reaction to a food is a potentially dangerous situation that will most likely happen to many of us. Let's look at the very basics of the issue so that you can evaluate how to protect yourself and your family. Continued...
   Test Your Carnival Food IQ! - Learn the caloric consequences of your decision to have dessert the next time you go out to eat or grab a bite with your coffee. Continued...
   Test Your Saturated Fat IQ! - Learn why large McDonald's fries are the best of the worst when it comes to saturated fat. Continued...

Health News Headlines 
    Stressed-out moms at risk of poor mental health - Mothers of young children who feel they lack emotional support or help in caring for their children have more than three-times the risk of mental health problems compared to their peers who feel adequately supported, a new study shows.
    Study spots gaps in Americans' diet and health IQ - Ninety percent of Americans say breakfast is an important part of a healthy diet, but just 49 percent manage to eat breakfast every day, a new survey shows. And only 11 percent know the amount of calories they should consume daily to maintain a healthy weight, according to the International Food Information Council (IFIC) Foundation's second annual Food & Health Survey.
    Pumping iron stimulates muscle-building hormones - In men, young and old, strength training boosts levels of testosterone, growth hormone, and cortisol -- hormones associated with enhanced muscle mass and function, a study shows. "These hormonal responses may create an optimal environment for the metabolic process leading to improved muscular function following a strength endurance program.
    Health, wealth predict quality of life for older adults - Financial resources, health and experiencing meaning in life are factors that directly influence a baby boomer's quality of life, according to a new study by Canadian researchers. They found that emotional support and physical environment are also important. Companionship and intimacy have a moderate to strong positive affect and can even enhance the quality of life over time among cancer patients.
    Obesity bad for the bones - New research does not support the general belief that obesity increases bone mass and is therefore good for bone health. A study, in which investigators corrected for the mechanical loading effect of increasing body weight, suggests the opposite. "Our study found that increasing body fat mass decreases bone mass, for people of similar weight.
    Study confirms heart benefits of whole grains - Americans should bulk up on whole grains like oatmeal, barley and brown rice to help lower their risk of clogged arteries, heart attacks and strokes, according to researchers. In a review of seven major studies, the researchers found that higher whole grain intake was consistently linked to a lower risk of heart disease and stroke.
    Overweight people get less out of exercise - Overweight and obese people get less out of resistance training than leaner people do, researchers said on Friday in a study that suggests the overweight may have to try harder to get results. But it does not mean they should give up, said the researchers, who noted the differences were small.
    Complications seen burdening type 2 diabetic kids - Children and adolescents with type 2 diabetes, like adults, are at risk for developing complications from the disease. However, these complications are expected to develop earlier in young patients, experts say. Given the rise in childhood cases of diabetes because of the obesity epidemic, this finding suggests there will be "serious public-health challenges in the next few decades.
    Low calorie foods spur healthy weight loss - While most diets focus on foods you shouldn't eat, those that emphasize adding low-calorie foods, like fruits and vegetables, can promote healthy weight loss, new research shows. Some weight-loss plans shun carbohydrates while others ban fat, but in the new study, researchers found that overweight adults who were instructed to focus on lower-calorie foods lost more weight than their peers who were simply told to cut their overall calories.
    Strength training may reverse muscle aging - Strength training may not only make older adults' muscles stronger, but younger as well, a small study suggests. It's well known that resistance exercises improve muscle strength and function in young and old alike, but the new research suggests that strength training also affects older muscles on the level of gene expression -- essentially turning back the clock on muscle aging.

Inspirational Quotes - Worry/Fear 
Fear is an acronym: False Expectations Appearing Real
“We promise according to our hopes and perform according to our fears.”—Francois, Duc de La Rochefoucauld
“I don't believe people die from hard work. They die from stress and worry and fear—the negative emotions. Those are the killers, not hard work. The fact is, in our society today, most people don't understand what hard work is all about.”—A.L. Williams
“Do not give any time to your past, you can't change what happened 5 minutes ago.”—Jan Ruhe
“The fear is worse than the pain.”—Shannon Bahr

On the Homefront 
   Yes, I had a glorious week with Grace and Carly, taking field trips to a different place every day, including Lowe's, Whole Foods, a visit to Susan Nichols for my high resolution blood morphology (I highly recommend a test if you can get one in your city) and, as I mentioned, Clark's Pet Emporium (the real highlight of the week!).
   I also read a great story and learned that values always come in pairs and one anchors the other and gives the other perspective. Success and freedom are paired values and although I am successful, I don't have the freedom that I enjoyed last week with the girls. Having paired values is my new goal in life...

Free e-Books 
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    Big Fat Lies
    Easy Guide to Fitness
    Personal Guide to Fitness
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Be fit and be healthy,
    Richard Dafter