8 Best Snacks for Active Older Adults

K. Aleisha Fetters wrote for Siver Sneakers in Trivity Health that you know a granola bar isn’t the most nutritious snack, but it’s a lot easier to eat on the go than an egg white omelet.

Which begs the question: Can a packed schedule and a high-protein diet coexist? Yes, says Elizabeth Adler, R.D., a dietitian with Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Services in New York City.

“Whole and minimally processed foods that are naturally high in protein are your best bets,” she says, adding that snacks with at least 10 to 15 grams of protein will keep your stomach content and your muscles fueled between meals.

Another reason to reach for protein-filled snacks: Research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that older adults who spread their protein intake throughout the day (not just at mealtimes) have stronger, healthier muscles.

Here are eight convenient snacks to help solve your active-body, active-life diet dilemma.

High-Protein Snack #1: Hard-Boiled Eggs

Eggs contain the most bioavailable form of protein there is. That means your body absorbs and uses the protein from eggs better than it does protein from any other food, says Atlanta-based sports dietitian Marie Spano, R.D. Read more

Heart attack signs in women

Ann Davis, M.D. whose specialty is Cardiology with Edward Hospital and Midwest Heart-Advocate Medical Group shared in the  Edward-Elmhurst Health, Healthy Driven newsletter  that we’ve seen it on television and movie screens; the camera focuses on a pained look on a man’s face, he grabs his chest dramatically and then falls to the floor. This is what we think a heart attack looks like — and it does sometimes — but it can come on much more subtly, especially for women. Sure, both men and women can experience a classic presentation of extreme pain or pressure in the chest, sometimes described as the feeling of an elephant on the chest. In fact, chest pain, pressure or tightness is the most common heart attack symptom for both men and women. But there are other ways the body may tell us something is wrong.

Although men and women can have atypical symptoms, women are more likely than men to experience them. Understanding these heart attack warning signs, and reacting to them, can mean the difference between life and death.

Every 40 seconds, someone in the U.S. suffers a heart attack — the cessation or drastic reduction in the flow of blood that delivers oxygen to the heart. That statistic represents about 790,000 people, 430,000 of whom are women according to the American College of Cardiology.

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What you should know about fainting

Edward-Elmhurst Health shared that scriptwriters often go for laughs when they have their characters faint in uncomfortable situations, like the first-time dad in the delivery room.

But passing out in real life isn’t a laughing matter, despite the fact that fainting (also called syncope) is frequently brought on by something non-life-threatening. Among possible causes is dehydration, overheating, exhaustion or a strong emotional response.

A common type of fainting, especially among children and young adults, is called vasovagal syncope. In these cases, fainting stems from excessive stimulation of the vagus nerve, a regulator of blood pressure and heart rate.

The person passes out when their blood pressure drops, reducing blood circulation to the brain. Stress, pain, hunger, and use of alcohol or drugs are among the potential triggers. These types of faints become less common as we age because the nervous system doesn’t react as quickly.

Other fainting episodes can be a sign of a significant medical problem, including heart disease, anemia, low blood sugar, a seizure disorder or a disease of the autonomic nervous system. Read more

How to raise smoke-free kids

Advocate Children’s Hospital shared with the Daily Herald Newspaper that the sad truth is that most smokers picked up the bad habit during their teenage years.

Nearly nine out of 10 cigarette smokers first tried smoking by age 18, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and on a daily basis, 2,100 young adults become regular cigarette smokers.

“No teenager, or adult for that matter, is immune to nicotine addiction. Teens can get hooked after smoking just a couple cigarettes for the first time, not realizing they are on the path to a lifelong addiction,” says Dr. Sai Nimmagadda, a pediatric allergist and immunologist with Advocate Children’s Hospital in Park Ridge.

Nimmagadda urges parents to do everything in their power to decrease the chances of their child reaching for a cigarette. He recommends parents use the following strategies to discourage teen smoking:

• Don’t Smoke: Not only are you saving your children from inhaling secondhand smoke, but you are also serving as a good example by not normalizing smoking in the home. Don’t allow visiting family members or friends to smoke in your house either.

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Plogging

This has been Kelly’s weekly routine for the past year and a half, and it wasn’t until recently that he learned that his environmentally conscious training method has a name — plogging — or that it has been dubbed one of the fitness trends of the year.

“I hate litter,” said Kelly, a regular marathon runner. “I just call these junk miles — miles you fill up after your hard runs.”

The Swedes are credited with popularizing the multi-tasking practice. Plogging is a combination of jogging and “plocka upp,” the Swedish term for pickup. The fitness trend has begun to spread in the United States, with plogging Facebook groups and social events sprouting up across the country.

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Trade Screen Time for Green Time

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Heat Safety Reminders

The Village of Lombard shared that the National Weather Service is predicting hot temperatures for the area this weekend, with a heat index of up to 110 degrees on Saturday. The Lombard Fire Department is reminding residents to beat the heat by following these tips:

  • Stay hydrated! Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink more fluids. Drink 2-4 cups of water every hour if you are in the heat.
  • NEVER leave a child, senior citizen, or pet in a car. Leaving the windows slightly open does not significantly decrease the heating rate. A car can soar to 100 degrees in 10 minutes on an 80 degree day.
  • Check on family members or neighbors who live alone.
  • If you, or someone around you experiences dizziness, nausea, headache or confusion, seek medical attention.

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Get More Out of Mouthwash Than Just Fresh Breath

Cheryl Bond-Nelms shared in AARP’s Healthy Living eNews that surprise, surprise — mouthwash is more useful than one might expect. Mouthwash has been around since 1879 and originally was used as an antiseptic for surgical procedures. Today we know it’s great for killing germs in your mouth and freshening breath, but mouthwash also can come in handy for a variety of unusual uses. For example, it can be used to treat dandruff or even keep cut flowers alive longer.

Here are eight unexpected uses for mouthwash. Just make sure you use a mouth rinse that is alcohol-based.

Toothbrush Cleaner

Studies have found that a toothbrush sitting in a cup or brush holder in the bathroom can get disgustingly dirty. According to one study by the University of Manchester in England, the average toothbrush is full of bacteria, 10 million or more, including E. coli and staph due to splash-back from the sink and toilet. This is where mouthwash can be extremely useful. It can kill bacteria in your mouth as well as your toothbrush. Place your brush in a cup of mouthwash for about 10 minutes. Rinse the brush with water before you brush your teeth. The antiseptic qualities will kill the germs and make your toothbrush fresh and clean.

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Hepatitis A

The Center of Disease Control shared that there is a foodborne illness that may not be on your radar.

Hepatitis A is an infection of the liver caused by the Hepatitis A virus. Hepatitis A can range from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months. Fortunately, infection with the Hepatitis A virus is not a lifelong infection like other forms of hepatitis, and there is a vaccine to prevent it.

Also, new cases are less than 3,000 a year in the United States. Hepatitis A can spread when a person ingests food or water contaminated by human waste that contains the virus. Food can become contaminated at any point: growing, harvesting, processing, handling and even after cooking. The Hepatitis A virus is even hardy enough to survive in frozen foods.

Many people get Hepatitis A while traveling to other countries. Regardless of where travelers eat or stay – even at high-end resorts – it is still possible to get infected with the hepatitis A virus. Before traveling, it is important to check to see what vaccines are recommend, including the Hepatitis A vaccine. Read more