Get Pumped for Hearth Healthy Month

go-red-for-women-logoHeart Disease is now affecting more women than men and in general, heart attacks are more severe in women than in men.

Women should be aware that heart attack symptoms may be different than those experienced by men. Women tend to feel a burning sensation in their upper abdomen and may experience lightheadedness, an upset stomach, and sweating. Because they may not feel the typical pain in the left half of their chest, many women ignore their symptoms and do not even realize they are experiencing a heart attack.

In addition to being aware of common symptoms of a heart attack, women are encouraged to learn and take steps to help prevent heart disease altogether. Use these tips to lower your risk of suffering a heart attack:  Read more

Take Precaution When Shoveling

Shoveling Snow #2The looming winter storm projected for our area on Tuesday Feb. 4-Wednesday Feb. 5, could potentially leave behind many inches of the white stuff that is causing many of us to scream s-NOOOO-w! The DuPage County Health Department is reminding residents to take certain precautions when shoveling snow in order to stay safe and healthy.

When shoveling:

  •  Warm up your muscles. Shoveling can be a vigorous activity. Before you begin, warm up your muscles for 10 minutes with light exercise.
  •  Pace yourself. Take frequent breaks and replenish fluids to prevent dehydration. If you experience chest pain, shortness of breath or other signs of a heart attack, seek emergency care.
  •  Use a shovel that is comfortable for your height and strength. Do not use a shovel that is too heavy or too long for you. Consider buying a shovel that is specially designed to prevent too much stooping. Space your hands on the tool grip to increase your leverage.
  •  When possible, push the snow instead of lifting it. If you must lift, take small amounts of snow, and lift it with your legs: Squat with your legs apart, knees bent and back straight. Lift by straightening your legs, without bending at the waist. Then walk to where you want to dump the snow; holding a shovelful of snow with your arms outstretched puts too much weight on your spine.

Do not throw the snow over your shoulder or to the side. This requires a twisting motion that stresses your back.

 

Bert and Ernie Are Speaking "Healthy!"

muffitMarilynn Marchione in an Associated Press article on January 24, 2014 shared that Bert and Ernie jump rope and munch apples and carrots, and Cookie Monster has his namesake treat once a week, not every day. Can a Muppets mini-makeover improve kids’ health, too?

A three-year experiment in South America suggests it can. Now, the Sesame Street project is coming to the United States.

Already, a test run in a New York City preschool has seen results: Four-year-old Jahmeice Strowder got her mom to make cauliflower for the first time in her life. A classmate, Bryson Payne, bugged his dad for a banana every morning and more salads. A parent brought home a loaf of bread instead of Doritos. Read more

Free Dental Screening on February 7, 2014

200245424-001The DuPage County Health Department’s dental clinic will be participating in the American Dental Association’s 12th annual “Give Kids A Smile Day” by offering free dental screenings to children aged 1-18 on Friday, February 7, 2014 from 9am-3:30pm.

The free dental screenings will be offered in the Health Department’s Smile Squad, a state of the art mobile dental clinic that travels throughout DuPage County serving children who need dental services.

This event will take place at two locations in the county:

DuPage Children’s Museum-301 N. Washington St. Naperville

DuPage County Health Department-111 N. County Farm Rd. Wheaton

Patients who receive free services at the Children’s Museum location will also receive a coupon to enjoy the museum after their screening or at a later date. (good for one adult admission with one paid child admission).

This event is part of the national “Give Kids A Smile Day” sponsored by the American Dental Association (ADA). The ADA began the Give Kids A Smile program in 2003 as a way for dentists to join with others in the community to provide dental services to underserved children. Dentists and other team members volunteer their time, and services, to provide screenings, treatments and education to children throughout the United States.

Game Plan for Safe Food Handling During Superbowl Parties

logoWith the football season’s biggest game scheduled on February 2, be sure to follow this food safety playbook from the DuPage County Health Department so no one gets sick and everyone goes home a winner.

Many Superbowl parties have an array of appetizers and snacks set out for party-goers.  However, this type of food service, where foods may be out for long periods leaves the door open for uninvited guests –bacteria that cause foodborne illnesses.

Remember this pep talk from the Health Department for safe food handling:  “Clean, Separate, Cook and Chill.”

Below is a game plan on how to host a championship get-together:

ILLEGAL USE OF HANDS

Avoid penalties for “illegal use of hands.” Unclean hands are one of the biggest culprits for spreading bacteria, and finger foods at parties are especially vulnerable. Cooks and guests should wash their hands with soap and warm water for 20 seconds before and after handling food. Also, be sure to clean eating surfaces often, and wash serving platters before replenishing them with fresh food. Read more

How Are They Doing Pt 2? Latest Update on Our Your Healthy Life Made Easy!™ Contest Winners

It’s been a few weeks since we last checked in on our Your Healthy Life Made Easy!™ Contest Winners, so here’s an update on how they’re doing, and we have some great stuff to shout out!  For background on Cindy and Cheryl CLICK HERE

man with megaphone

Contest Winner Cindy Musiel broke through an important weight loss benchmark in early December–getting back down to a weight she hadn’t seen since 2009!  Since my last post on 12/3, Cindy is down another 14 pounds–21 since we started working together in early October and 69 since she started her overall weight loss journey in April 2013!

Cindy was a little frustrated when the scale refused to budge over the holidays despite her keeping her workouts up–only losing about half a pound–but as I tell all my weight loss coaching clients, if you can just maintain your weight over the holidays when most people gain weight, you’ve done an outstanding job!  And in her case, like it is for most people, it’s just temporary as sometimes the body just needs a chance to catch up.

Getting close to the end of the 4th month of our work together (out of 6), now Cindy is focusing on increasing the intensity of her workouts as she’s lighter and more fit, increasing the speed on the treadmill and elliptical, doing some HIIT (high intensity interval training) using work-at-home videos that she’s modifying for some prior injuries to make them right for her and keeping up the resistance training she added when she joined a gym in November.

Interestingly, Cindy was using an app that she felt was giving her too low a daily calorie target for all the activity she was doing, and when I reviewed her records I agreed.  So we actually had to adjust her consumption upwards to give her the proper amount of fuel to support all her activity.  And the pounds are coming off steadily again.  Yes, sometimes when you’re trying to lose weight, you actually have to increase your calories to strike a proper balance.

Contest Runner-Up Cheryl Behrens finished her 3 months of coaching with me earlier this month, and dropped a major surprise announcement on me during her final session. As you recall, while Cheryl had come to enter the contest for weight loss reasons, when we got to talking, she really wanted to focus on getting more energy, organization and a regular, healthy eating pattern into her life, reducing stress, get more work-life balance and maintaining her ability to do all the activities that she wants to in life as she gets older.  So we put the weight loss aside…or so I thought.

By the end of our time together, Cheryl did achieve all that and more.  She’s been feeling way less stressed, more positive as life’s challenges come her way, achieved greater work-life balance all on increased energy.  Cheryl has learned to not try to take on too much at one time and scatter her focus, as well as to be creative in organization of her time and space so she feels more in control of her world–something we can all aspire to do.

She’s taken new measures based on ideas we’ve brainstormed together to ensure she eats regularly and healthfully even if she doesn’t want to cook for herself.  And when it’s not snowing too badly and doesn’t feel like Siberia out (or CHIberia as my husband has been calling it), she gets to the gym.

So the BIG surprise from Cheryl, was that without even trying, by addressing all the other aspects of her health and wellness she wanted to work on together, she sneakily LOST 10 POUNDS during our 3 months together!  She had told me that she wanted to surprise me with this happy, unexpected change, and she sure did!

It goes to show you that like I always believe, weight loss and weight management are intertwined with all other areas of wellness–nutrition, fitness, stress reduction, work-life balance and life satisfaction.  Needing to lose weight is usually a sign that something else in your life is off, and until you get to what’s really getting in the way of being the happiest and healthiest you, it’s going to be a struggle to get to where you want to go.  But once you do, it’s not as hard as you think to lose weight and keep it off for good.

I learned this lesson myself through my own weight loss journey that led to a 48-pound weight loss I’ve kept off for 4 years now, and I’m privileged that as a Certified Health and Wellness Coach, I get to spend my days helping people like Cheryl and Cindy make their healthy lives easy and break down these barriers every single day 🙂

 

Copyright 2014 SunLover Publishing LLC

An easier, speedier way to eat more vegetables

Fruit-and-veggiesAssociated Press contributor Sara  MoultonIt write that it is the same thing every year. We overindulge during the holidays, then make solemn (and quickly abandoned) promises to eat healthier and shed pounds in the new year.So here’s a sane and simple resolution that will help you achieve both goals in a single stroke — eat more vegetables.

It’s no secret that almost all vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories. Most also are good sources of dietary fiber, potassium, folate and vitamins A and C. If you did nothing more than pile your plate with vegetables, add a small portion of lean protein, and ramp up your daily exercise a bit, you’d probably find all that extra holiday baggage dropping away without having to count calories.

The only problem with eating more vegetables is that it can take a significant amount of time to prep them, and even more time to cook them. Messing with root vegetables is often a marathon. Beets require 45 minutes to steam or an hour to bake. Carrots or parsnips also can be pretty time-consuming. You can cut the cooking time if you first slice them into smaller pieces, but not all of us are aces with a knife. Read more

Make Your Next Meeting Healthier!

meetings
Looking for some great hints on how to make your next meeting a healthier event?

Click here for a documents that contains some great suggestions.

Upcoming Fenton H.S. Presentation

Click HERE to download the hard copy of this flyer.Fenton