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healthy diet

Physical Activity Offers Great Benefits to Those Living with a Health Condition

  • Posted May 07, 2019
  • hchadmin

Did you know that according to the American Heart Association (AHA), active people who have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes or other chronic health conditions are more likely to live healthier for a longer period of time than inactive people with the same conditions?

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) says that physical activity can help lower your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol levels. It also reduces your risk for stroke, relieves stress and anxiety and strengthens your heart, muscles and bones.

These benefits are important for everyone, but especially for those with chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes and depression.
Because of the symptoms they experience, those who live with illness may find it challenging to get regular physical activity. The ADA and AHA offer the following tips:

•    Look for opportunities to be more active during the day. Walk the mall before shopping, take the stairs instead of the escalator or take 10–15 minute breaks for walking or some other activity while watching TV or sitting. (or join us at the upcoming May 18 Walk to Cure Arthritis!)
•    Don't get discouraged if you stop for a while. Get started again gradually and work up to your old pace.
•    Don't participate in physical activities right after meals or when it's very hot or humid.
•    It is recommended that diabetics check blood glucose before and after activity (if it’s too low, eat a piece of fruit, a few crackers or drink a glass of milk) and carry a snack to eat if you’ll be active for a few hours or more. If you have one, wear your medical alert I.D.
•    You can do this even if you've been sedentary for a long time, are overweight, have a high risk of coronary heart disease or some other chronic health condition. See your doctor for a medical evaluation before beginning a physical activity program.

In addition to getting regular physical activity, developing and maintaining a relationship with a primary care physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health.

A PCP typically specializes in family medicine, internal medicine or general practice. If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

When you’re being treated for a health condition, it may not always be easy to decide where to go for care. For anything that is considered a life-threatening situation (like chest pain or sudden and severe pain) it’s best to go to the emergency room. For less severe matters that still require immediate attention, if you can’t get in to see your PCP, going to an urgent care facility can save you time and money.

Even if you require emergency or urgent care for your health situation, it’s always best to have a relationship with a PCP who knows your history and understands what is happening with your health over time.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.


Keys to Well-being: Eating Healthier, Getting Regular Screenings, Knowing Your Numbers

  • Posted Mar 05, 2019
  • Christine Walker

Mom was right when she told us to eat all of our veggies and listen to what our doctors tell us to do to maintain our good health. But, according to recent studies from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it seems that many of us are not taking mom’s advice to heart.

According to the CDC, only 9.3 percent of Americans meet daily intake recommendations for total vegetables (this includes dark green and orange veggies) and just 12.2 percent of Americans eat the two to four recommended daily servings of fruit.

That’s why, during National Nutrition Month, Holy Cross Hospital encourages you to care for yourself and your loved ones by reminding you of the importance of eating healthier and getting regular health screenings.

The federal government has published recommended dietary guidelines designed to promote general health and reduce the risk of chronic diseases and obesity. You can start following the guidelines by:

•    Following a healthier eating pattern across the lifespan
•    Focusing on variety, nutrient density and amount
•    Limiting calories from added sugars and saturated fats and reducing sodium intake
•    Shifting to healthier food and beverage choices
•    Supporting healthier eating patterns for all

Making these changes can help you keep your biometric numbers (like blood pressure, blood sugar, weight, etc.) in a healthier range.

The best way to find out if your numbers are within a healthy range for your gender, height and age is to have annual health screenings with your primary care physician (PCP). Annual health screenings are 100 percent covered by your health insurance as preventive care.

Having a PCP who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote your well-being though body, mind and spirit.

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Lowering Your Risk for Disease

  • Posted Feb 26, 2019
  • hchadmin



Did you know that according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics eating a healthier diet is one of the first lines of defense in the prevention of type 2 diabetes and heart disease?

March is National Nutrition Month and Holy Cross Hospital would like to encourage you to care for yourself, and your loved ones, by reminding you of the importance of healthier eating, spiritual well-being and preventive care.  

The American Diabetes Association says that healthier eating is one of the most important things we can do to lower the risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Additionally, research by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) shows that following a healthier diet can help prevent high blood pressure and may lower blood pressure that is already over the normal range.    

Below are some tips from the NIH to help you make healthier food choices every day:

•Keep healthier snacks, such as fruit and vegetables, at home and at work

•Pack healthier lunches for you and your family

•Choose low-fat diary products

•Eat whole-grain cereals, breads, crackers, brown rice, pasta or oatmeal

•Select lean meats and poultry

•Choose more fish, beans, peas, nuts and seeds as protein sources

Another great way to reduce your risk of developing disease is by maintaining spiritual wellness. According to Mental Health America, there is a connection between spirituality and health. Spirituality can reduce the stress that often drives disease. Holy Cross Hospital offers the following suggestions to keep your good health:

•Discover and rediscover what makes your life meaningful. Find what brings your life purpose and align your choices with it. Wherever your passion is, there you’ll find your purpose.

•Nurture your connection with God/your Higher Power through regular spiritual practices.  Some people choose prayer, others meditate, some read Scripture, and others walk through nature. Whatever helps you in your relationship with the Divine, make time to foster your awareness of the Sacred.  

•Connect with others who share your values. Having meaningful relationships with others, with focus on what is important to us, reminds us that we are not alone and can often bring joy to our lives.

•Find opportunities to serve. Helping others in need, either through volunteer work or some other means, nurtures our spirit when we feel our actions make a positive difference for other people.  

Last, but not least, getting annual physicals and tests from your doctor is key in sustaining your health and preventing diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure. Having a primary care physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. A PCP typically specializes in family medicine, internal medicine or general practice. 

If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As you’re your Trusted Health Partner for Life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote your well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.

categories: 

Keys to Well-being: Eating Healthier, Getting Regular Screenings, Knowing Your Numbers

  • Posted Mar 13, 2018
  • hchadmin

food

 

 

 

 

 

Mom was right when she told us to eat all of our veggies and listen to what our doctors tell us to do to maintain our good health. But, according to recent studies from  the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it seems that many of us are not taking mom’s advice to heart.

According to the CDC, at least 88 percent of Americans failed to meet daily intake recommendations for total vegetables (this includes dark green and orange veggies) and three-quarters of Americans don't eat the two to four recommended daily servings of fruit.

That’s why, during National Nutrition Month, Holy Cross Hospital encourages you to care for yourself and your loved ones by eating healthier and getting regular health screenings.

The federal government has published recommended dietary guidelines designed to promote general health and reduce the risk of chronic diseases and obesity.

You can start following the guidelines by:
• Following a healthy eating pattern across the lifespan
• Focusing on variety, nutrient density and amount
• Limiting calories from added sugars and saturated fats and reducing sodium intake
• Shifting to healthier food and beverage choices
• Supporting healthier eating patterns for all

Making these changes can help you keep your biometric numbers (like blood pressure, blood sugar, weight, etc.) in a healthy range.

The best way to find out if your numbers are within a healthy range for your gender, height and age is to have your annual screenings with your primary care physician (PCP). Annual health screenings are 100 percent covered by your health insurance as preventive care.

Having a PCP who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. If you don’t have a PCP, just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote your well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.


Lowering Your Risk for Disease with Good Nutrition

  • Posted Feb 28, 2018
  • hchadmin

 

 

 

 

 

 

Did you know that according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics eating a healthier diet is one of the first lines of defense in the prevention of type 2 diabetes and heart disease?

March is National Nutrition Month and Holy Cross Hospital encourages you to care for yourself, and your loved ones, through healthier eating, spiritual well-being and preventive care. 

The American Diabetes Association says that eating healthy is one of the most important things we can do to lower the risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Additionally, research by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) shows that following a healthier diet can help prevent high blood pressure and may lower blood pressure that is already over the normal range.   

Below are some tips from the NIH to help you make healthier food choices every day:

• Keep healthier snacks, such as fruit and vegetables, at home and at work
• Pack healthier lunches for you and your family
• Choose low-fat diary products
• Eat whole-grain cereals, breads, crackers, brown rice, pasta or oatmeal
• Select lean meats and poultry
• Choose more fish, beans, peas, nuts and seeds as protein sources

Another great way to reduce your risk of developing disease is by maintaining spiritual wellness. According to Mental Health America, there is a connection between spirituality and health. Spirituality can reduce the stress that often drives disease.  Holy Cross offers the following suggestions to keep your good health:

• Discover and rediscover what makes your life meaningful. Find what brings your life purpose and align your choices with it. Wherever your passion is, there you’ll find your purpose.
• Nurture your connection with God/your Higher Power through regular spiritual practices.  Some people choose prayer, others meditate, some read Scripture, and others walk through nature. Whatever helps you in your relationship with the Divine, make time to foster your awareness of the Sacred. 
• The Center for Engaged Spirituality provides lots of information on various spiritual practices.
• Connect with others who share your values. Having meaningful relationships with others, with focus on what is important to us, reminds us that we are not alone and can often bring joy to our lives.
• Find opportunities to serve. Helping others in need, either through volunteer work or some other means, nurtures our spirit when we feel our actions make a positive difference for other people. 
Last, but not least, getting annual physicals and tests from your doctor is key in sustaining your health and preventing diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure. Having a primary care physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. A PCP typically specializes in Family Medicine, Internal Medicine or General Practice.


If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

As your trusted health partner for life, Holy Cross Hospital is committed to providing resources that promote your well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you Live Your Whole Life.


Lowering Your Risk for Disease

  • Posted Jun 06, 2017
  • hchadmin

Did you know that according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics eating a healthier diet is one of the first lines of defense in the prevention of Type 2 diabetes and heart disease?

Holy Cross Hospital encourages you to care for yourself, and your loved ones, by reminding you of the importance of healthier eating, spiritual well-being and preventive care.  

The American Diabetes Association says that eating healthy is one of the most important things we can do to lower the risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Additionally, research by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) shows that following a healthier diet can help prevent high blood pressure and may lower blood pressure that is already over the normal range.    

Below are some tips from the NIH to help you make healthier food choices every day:

•Keep healthier snacks, such as fruit and vegetables, at home and at work

•Pack healthier lunches for you and your family

•Choose low-fat diary products

•Eat whole-grain cereals, breads, crackers, brown rice, pasta or oatmeal

•Select lean meats and poultry

•Choose more fish, beans, peas, nuts and seeds as protein sources

Another great way to reduce your risk of developing disease is by maintaining spiritual wellness. According to Mental Health America, there is a connection between spirituality and health. Spirituality can reduce the stress that often drives disease. Holy Cross Hospital offers the following suggestions to keep your good health:

•Discover and rediscover what makes your life meaningful. Find what brings your life purpose and align your choices with it. Wherever your passion is, there you’ll find your purpose.

•Nurture your connection with God/your Higher Power through regular spiritual practices.  Some people choose prayer, others meditate, some read Scripture, others walk through nature. Whatever helps you in your relationship with the Divine, make time to foster your awareness of the Sacred.  

•Connect with others who share your values. Having meaningful relationships with others, which focus on what is important to us, reminds us that we are not alone and can often bring joy to our lives.

•Find opportunities to serve. Helping others in need, either through volunteer work or some other means, nurtures our spirit when we feel our actions make a positive difference for other people.  

Last, but not least, getting annual physicals and tests from your doctor is key in sustaining your health and preventing diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure. Having a Primary Care Physician (PCP) who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. A PCP typically specializes in Family Medicine, Internal Medicine or General Practice. 

If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions. Or click here. Stay on top of your health education by subscribing to our e-newsletter.


A good week for Chick-fil-a (Part II)

  • Posted Mar 27, 2012
  • Alan Niederman, MD, FACC, FACP

Alright. Let's stop fooling around and get to the meat of the matter. (I couldn't help myself.) This epidemiological study used two studies: the Health Professionals Follow-up Study of 37,698 men and the Nurses Health Study with 83,644 women. In the Health Professionals Follow-up Study, after 22 years, there were a total of 8,926 deaths. 2,716 of the deaths were from cardiovascular causes, and 3,073 were from cancer. In the Nurses Health Study, there were 15,000 deaths in 28 years. 3,194 of the deaths were from a cardiovascular cause and 6,391 were from cancer. These data were subjected to various analyses. Eating red meat was associated with several characteristics, among them less exercise, more alcohol, weigh more and smoking. Taken alone, each additional serving of processed or unprocessed red meat led to a 12% increase in all cause mortality, a 16% increase in cardiovascular mortality and a 10% increase in cancer mortality. The analysis further showed that 10% of the deaths in men and 7.6% of the deaths in women could be prevented by consuming 1/2 less of a serving of red meat a day. Much of this I find foolish. I do not debate that everyone should strive to have as little processed food as possible; we should eat fewer calories, much fewer; fruits and vegetables should be prominently featured in meals; and protein should be varied with fish and chicken (those poor chickens) playing a larger role than red meat. I personally don't think that this study is of any use. These people were better educated than most of our population. Many had advanced degrees. All of them entered into a study almost 25 years ago. Those of you in this age bracket surely understand that most people eat differently today than we did 25 years ago. Many smoked at one point in their life when today it is much less common in the population. We generally have a more "fit" lifestyle than these individuals. Is this study valid in today's environment? A recent lifestyle study of cardiologists showed that < 1% smoked, 33.5% described themselves as overweight, 4% obese 63% age 50 or greater exercise on a regular basis. Will we have the same results? If anything, this study showed that we are more likely to die of cancer than a cardiovascular event, almost twice as likely. That doesn't sound very appetizing either. In a related article, Mark Bittman who is a columnist for the New York Times wrote on March 9th about how soy protein is becoming more and more able to fake being the food it is trying to be. Better "fake meat" has several advantages over the real deal. It is more friendly to the earth, it is healthier and no chickens were harmed in the process. We raise and kill nearly eight billion chickens a year according to the article. There really is a difference from industrial raised chickens and "free range " ones. If you viewed a video on industrial raised chickens you probably wouldn't eat them. If nothing else you would definitely wash them better. The joke is that "it tastes like chicken," mostly since chicken itself doesn't have much taste. It is rather a bland protein that can be tarted up in a million ways and is incredibly versatile. Do the best you can. Try enjoying what you eat. It helps with weight loss and gives meaning to meals.


Let’s hear it for potato chips

  • Posted Jul 14, 2011
  • Alan Niederman, MD, FACC, FACP

It must be the summer as the level of science has dropped, but the level of important information has remained at an all time high.  We now have an article that included 120,877 men and women who were all healthcare professionals.  They were followed for up to 20 years. The participants in this study gained an average of 3.35 pounds every four years.  This number correlates with our general medical belief that people gain an average of 10 pounds a decade.

Published in the N Engl J Med 2011; 364:2392-2404 this study proved once and for all that eating potato chips causes obesity.  This is followed in second place by eating potatoes or fries.  The best foods to eat are yogurt and nuts.  It should also not be a surprise that drinking sugar sweetened beverages of any kind wasn’t such a good idea either.  No calorie soda seems to be ok.  I told you not to super size it. One of the most surprising findings was that it doesn’t seem to matter what type of dairy products you eat.  There was no apparent difference between fat, low fat and no fat milk and other products so I guess we can go back to milk that tastes like milk.  At least my cappuccino will taste better. This article also sheds light on the eternal foolishness of low carb, high carb, no carb, low fat, etc. etc. that is the fodder of every magazine in this country except the National Review.  (Unless they are discussing what Ronald Regan ate for breakfast)  Here it is, the unblemished truth directly from the paper:  “changes in the consumption of refined or processed foods and liquid carbohydrates or alcohol (OH NO) were positively associated with weight gain, whereas changes in the consumption of unprocessed foods such as whole grains, fruits, nuts and vegetables were inversely associated with weight gain.” If you eat the way we eat now you, are doomed to gain weight.  If you eat like we did in 1776, you are set.  I wonder where Veal Parmesan fits in.  This is probably the reason the Italians who live in Italy have never heard of it.

I have more good news.  As I have blogged before, watching TV will kill you.  That is unless you watch it standing up and while doing something (like exercising) and not eating potato chips and drinking soda.  It may be as bad as smoking but not quite.  This of course does not relate to watching anything with Oprah in it, which is allowed at all times and gets a free pass. Speaking of smoking, when you stop, it does seem to cause an initial weight gain but then is responsible for little change after.  The benefits of not smoking clearly outweigh the risks of smoking even if you gain weight. Either good or bad is the news that 50 to 100 kcal of energy either way is enough to cause a weight gain or loss over time.  This probably accounts for the constant refrain that I and most physicians hear, which is that I eat nothing and can’t lose weight. Let’s summarize.  I know you have heard it before but it seems to be the best way to lose weight. Get some exercise daily.  The more you do, the less you will weigh.  Eat as much non processed food as possible.  We might have to go back to cooking.  Don’t smoke.  Don’t watch TV.  Live long and prosper.


Maybe Brooke Shields had it right (Part 2)

  • Posted Mar 10, 2011
  • Alan Niederman, MD, FACC, FACP

I love people who put their money were their mouth is.  Literally!  On March 3, 2011, The New York Times published a long article about David Murdock.  This article was written by Frank Bruni who was for years the Times restaurant critic.  Most people will not know who David Murdock is, but it seems he is very wealthy and on Forbes list of the 400 wealthiest Americans at No.130 with an estimated net worth of $2.7 billion.  He owns a pack of companies, most notably Dole Foods. He believes in eating a certain way, the way he has been eating for over thirty years.  It consists of -- I know you know -- fruits and vegetables.  His protein comes from fish, egg whites, beans and nuts; no alcohol, sugar or salt.  Haven’t I heard this before?  Jack LaLanne’s biggest contribution lately was the Juice-a-matic to liquefy anything that was a fruit or vegetable.  V-8 is not a substitute. Jack, however, did not build a $500 million North Carolina Research Campus to prove his contention that eating the right variety and amount of fruits and vegetables will result in living for a much longer time.  This is the proper time to tell you that he also exercises, both cardiovascular and weight training.  He is also paying for a 50,000 patient study to find markers of longevity that may be present early on when the disease strikes years later. None of this is particularly new or original.  It is being done on a much greater scale than ever before, however.  Will it answer the vexing question of does it matter?  Most doctors believe -- and I will be the first to tell you that just because we believe something doesn’t make it right -- that it’s not what we eat, it’s how much.  Even the Federal Government came out with that fantastic piece of nutrition advice in their Nutrition position paper this year.  It is buried in the middle of the paper, but nonetheless, is a big step forward for the Feds. Murdock’s father lived into his 90’s.  His mother died young.  It’s not really how long you live but how well you function into old age and that is predicated on how flexible you are and how much you exercise; Yoga, Tai Chi, weight training and walking all help to tone and keep vital muscle, which allows for better functioning of the body as it ages.  In the 23 years that I have practiced medicine in Florida, one recurring observation I have is that if a patient came to Florida sick, they did not miraculously improve; however, if a patient came still healthy enough to exercise, then they often looked and acted much younger than their actual age.  I have many patients, both men and women, who are in their 90’s and look as if they are in their 70’s. We cannot answer the question "Is the type of food that you eat important?" yet.  The mice may help, but for the present generation, I would advise eating less and as someone once said, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” However, we maybe closing in on why exercise helps you live longer, and that is the next blog.


About Holy Cross Hospital

Holy Cross Hospital is a nonprofit, Catholic hospital in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, dedicated to innovative, high quality and compassionate care. For nearly six decades, Holy Cross has continuously expanded its services to provide leading-edge care for their patients in Florida and for those from elsewhere in the United States. Holy Cross also offers an International Services program to ensure that patients from outside the U.S. receive the care they need.

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