Why Drinking Diet Soda Makes You Crave Sugar

Why is the American Heart Association so concerned about sugar? “Overconsumption of added sugars has long been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease,” meaning heart disease and strokes. We used to think added sugars were just a marker for an unhealthy diet. At fast-food restaurants, for example, people may be more likely to order a cheeseburger with their super-sized soda than a salad. However, the new thinking is that the added sugars in processed foods and drinks may be independent risk factors in and of themselves. Indeed, worse than just empty calories, they may be actively disease-promoting calories, which I discuss in his video Does Diet Soda Increase Stroke Risk as Much as Regular Soda?.

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Daniel Fagbuyi, MD, FAAP a former emergency medicine pediatrician at Children’s Nationa wrote for the Rise and Shine Newsletter that exercise is important for kids, but there’s one form of exercise most pediatricians will caution against trampolines. Trampolines are not toys.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recently published an article showing that trampoline injuries have increased over the past decade, and the organization advises against recreational trampolining altogether. Furthermore, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons states that children under the age of 6 should never use trampolines.

Collisions, falls and improper landings can all cause severe harm, and the youngest kids are the ones most at risk. If your kids do play on trampolines, here’s some advice on how to keep them safer.

Trampoline safety tips

  • Only one person should be allowed to jump at a time.
  • There must be adult supervision at all times.
  • Do not jump with any sharp objects in hand, like a rock or a pencil.

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Cycling Accidents Do’s & Don’ts

Andries from UpPedal asks, “Have you ever had a big fall from your bike?”  Most people who ride bikes fall at some point…it is just how it is. A rite of passage even! Usually, it is nothing serious. Just a slight tumble where you get up again and dust yourself off. But sometimes it can be a bit more serious. So when there is a serious cycling accident, what should you do?

Not too long ago, Andries and her friends went for a ride and one of her friends had a big fall (the dust cloud from the tumble looked like a nuclear mushroom cloud!). Luckily there were no broken bones or serious injuries (just a cut requiring a trip to the emergency room for some stitches that resulted in an awesome scar). But the incident made us realize that they were not prepared for such a situation. After that, they figured out what they would need to do and what they should carry with them to be able to handle a similar situation again.

Below she outlines a list of do’s and don’ts that anyone involved in a cycling accident should keep in mind. Obviously your choice of cycling (road cycling, cycling to work, mountain biking, etc) will have its own unique set of circumstances. But hopefully, the information below will help you when you don’t know what to do! Read more

Watching TV ‘has strongest link’ with childhood obesity

Simon Weedy reported for “Child In The City” that the Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal) did a study of 1,480 children to identify the lifestyle habits that influence the risk of becoming overweight and obesity at a young age.

The youngsters involved were from the cities of Sabadell and Valencia, along with Gipuzkoa province, and had been enrolled in the birth cohort of the INMA Environment and Childhood Project, a Spanish research network which studies pollutants during pregnancy and their effects on children.

‘TV had the strongest association with obesity’

Researchers looked at five lifestyle habits: physical activity, sleep time, television time, plant-based food consumption and ultra-processed food consumption. The youngsters’ parents were also questioned on the kids’ lifestyle habits at the age of four. To make the calculations, researchers looked at the children’s body mass index (BMI), waist circumference and blood pressure at four and seven years.

Television watching was found to have the strongest association with overweight and obesity, as youngsters who were less active and spent more time in front of the TV aged four were at greater risk of being affected by weight issues, obesity, and metabolic syndrome – a group of medical problems that put some children older than 10 years old at risk for heart disease – at seven years of age. Read more

Set your fitness goals for 2020!

Go 4 Life suggests that as you start another year, it’s important to set firm goals for your physical fitness—you’ll be more motivated throughout the year. Goals are most useful when they’re specific, realistic, and important to you. Think about the following questions as you begin:

  • What can you do in the next week that will help make physical activity a habit?
  • Where do you want to be in the next 6 months? A year?
  • How are you doing a few weeks in? Check-in with your progress and celebrate your successes.

Many people find that having a firm goal in mind motivates them to move ahead on a project. Goals are most useful when they are specific, realistic, and important to you. Be sure to review your goals regularly as you make progress or your priorities change.

Download and use the Goal-Setting Worksheet to document where you want to be in both the short-and long-term.

STEP 1: Write Down Your Short-Term Goals

Write down at least two of your personal short-term goals. What will you do over the next week or two that will help you make physical activity a regular part of your life? Think about the things you need to get or do to be physically active. For example, you may need to buy appropriate fitness clothes or walking shoes. Make sure your short-term goals will really help you be more active.

If you’re already active, think of short-term goals to increase your level of physical activity. For example, over the next week or two, increase the amount of weight you lift or try a new kind of physical activity. No matter what your starting point, reaching your short-term goals will give you the confidence to progress toward your long-term goals. Read more


The Rise and Shine Newsletter shared that parents of children with celiac disease may be able to rest easier thanks to a preliminary study of cooking habits by experts at Children’s National Hospital.

Using the same toaster, knives or pots and pans for gluten-free and gluten-containing foods may not pose a high risk of gluten exposure for people with celiac disease. What’s more, routine washing of utensils and equipment with soap and water and handwashing can further reduce or eliminate gluten transfer. So, cutting cupcakes with different knives at the next birthday party your child attends may not be necessary.

The study was conceived and led by Vanessa Weisbrod, executive director of the Celiac Disease Program at Children’s National Hospital and a board-certified nutritionist. She also has celiac disease, as does her son.

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Biking Safety: Everything You Need To Know About Bike Safety

Ready to take a ride with your bike around the hood? Perhaps through the busy streets of your town?   Great!

This article from GuideCool will provide actionable tips on how you can increase your biking safety. In it, you’ll learn why biking safety is essential, tips, rules, etc.

Why Is Bike Safety So Important?

In 2017, a whopping 783 bicyclists were killed in separate crashes in the USA. Consequently, in such fatal crashes, it is the cyclist who sustains fatal bodily injuries.

Thankfully, you can avoid such collisions by following the tips we will share in the consecutive sections. You’ll learn about different rules, biking safety tips, and find crucial educational material for the community and many more.

So, find out ways you can avoid accidents and deaths and always remember that bicycle crashes are avoidable if cyclists and motorists follow the rules and take notice of each other. Read more


Ellen HamburgerEllen “Ellie” Hamburger, MD,  a senior partner with Children’s Pediatricians & Associates since 2002, and wh9  has served as Medical Director of CP&A since 2016 has a particular interest in children with special needs and premature infants.  She shared in the Rise and Shine Newsletter that when temperatures dip and snowflakes begin to fall, I – like much greater Washington, D.C.-area residents – am eager for the chance to dive under some cozy, warm blankets and spend the day curled up on the couch. Yes, I do love those restful days, but I also know that staying active and exercising throughout the frosty, snow-filled months is just as important.

As a pediatrician, I encourage families to take small steps every day toward ensuring their children grow up healthy and strong. During the winter months, getting enough exercise is one of the first areas we tend to overlook, but it’s critically important for strengthening growing hearts and lungs and preventing obesity. Choosing outdoor activities also can help limit the spread of colds and flu germs, which easily spread through close proximity and in enclosed spaces.

Parents often have concerns about how to keep their children safe and healthy while still being active outside during the winter, so here’s a list of answers to commonly asked questions to guide the way. As always, for specific questions related to your child’s health, I encourage all parents to seek advice from their pediatricians. Read more

Happy New Year 202 from Healthy Lombard!

Some New Year thoughts from Healthy Lombard:

  • This year if you want a different result, make a different choice and do things in a different
  • New Year is like a restart button. Use it to start things over.
  • This year try and make small efforts to see big changes in your life.
  • Every year life gives us 365 days to find meaning in our life.
  • Celebrate your life as each day comes. Happy New Year.
  • If you already tried things, this year focuses on doing it.
  • Don’t wait for the luck to come to you, work hard and grab it with both hands.

So …   have a fabulous 2020 with full of great achievements and experiences.

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Welcome 2020!