Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Fat Debate

Let's get this out on the table being skinny does not mean one is healthy and neither is being fat, overweight or obese. Lately there has been a resurgence on the topic of being overweight and the health implications. Over the years, studies have linked various diseases to being overweight or obese. Yet somehow, another study comes out to contradict the reports on being overweight or obese suggesting that it is okay to be fat and healthy. These mixed messages can really confuse or create the perfect pass for those who are struggling to accept their excess weight.

In fact, many celebrities who proudly announced that they are fat and fabulous have at some point worked on losing weight. Oprah, Carnie Wilson, Ricki Lake and Star Jones initially declared how proud and confident they were of being big. Queen Latifah enjoyed her body, Comedian Monique wrote a book Skinny Women Are Evil,hosted a show for fat models and starred in movies that confidently portrayed her character.

Furthermore, super model Tyra Banks wore a bathing suit and told her live audience as well as the television viewers how proud she was of every cellulite, dimple, curve on her body and ended with a smack to the hip and telling those who did not like it to kiss her fat @$$. Meanwhile, Tyra hosted America's Top Model show where she criticized the thin models who gained a pound or two. Well shortly after these declarations, these same proud to be "thick, women with curves" celebrities all worked on losing weight. They explained that they felt it was important to improve on their health and wellness - losing the weight included surgical intervention, signing up as a weight loss program spokesperson, dieting, etc.

There are many sites that celebrates big women, model agencies developed to accommodate the increasing demands for representation of the growing population. They stand up against discrimination and protest on seats being too small on trains,buses, airplanes and restaurants. Obviously, this is more about the embarrassment of it all. Getting to the point of the topic, being fat, overweight or obese takes a toll on the body. No matter how confident you feel about your looks, the internal system is not as confident. As fat settles in, one can develop diabetes,stroke, heart disease and even cancer.

Most importantly, one who is overweight knows it when they find that walking up the stairs can be an incredible task. Not only are they out of breath, they also experience problems with their knees, swollen ankles among other weight related stress on the body. Your body sends you the signals to warn you that all is not right on the inside.

Keeping one's weight within the guidelines for health control can be quite a challenge - one that is worth it.

Begin with Small Steps

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Safety During Snow Storms

Tis the winter season and along with it comes the snow. During the winter, many people prefer to stay indoors and are less active during the season. In fact, it's the time where weight gain is increased as the comfort of staying in and eating, watching tv, surfing the Internet, using the hand held devices, playing video games all contribute to a more laid back sedentary life style. Now here comes the snow and many people get out the shovel to remove the snow. Most of those people have not lead active lives and are at greater risk for heart attacks, back injuries and other painful injuries.

As a matter of fact, about an inch of snowfall and with the temperature as low as 20 degrees can cause the death rate to triple for men between the ages of 39 - 45 years old. The cold weather makes it difficult for the cardiovascular system and the heart. Your body wants to keep warm therefore your body tries to conserve heat which narrows the blood vessels as a result, your blood pressure is raised. If your blood pressure rises, the heart has to get to work to pump the blood to the other parts of the body. Picture it - narrowed vessels - blood needs to get through - heart starts pumping harder to do it's job - exhausting process. In the case of what you don't know can't hurt you is not quite that simple as many may not be aware that they have a small plaque rupture in a heart vessel wall and with all the work happening in the cardiovascular system - a hazard to your health and wellness. Keep in mind that the blood clots more often in the cold weather.

Smokers, previous heart attack patients, overweight and inactive people should consult with your doctor before shoveling. Do not ignore pain after shoveling as you can dismiss it as just after effects of the shoveling or a pulled muscle - it can be a heart attack.

Symptoms of a heart attack includes:

cold sweat
pain, pain in the arms, back, jaw or neck
shortness of breath
discomfort or a squeezing sensation in the chest
shortness of breath

Women need to be especially aware of shortness of breath, nausea or vomiting and back or jaw pain as these symptoms are related to a warning for them.

Here are some help full tips for safe ways to shovel the snow:

stretch before you venture outdoors
dress appropriately (layer up covering your nose with a scarf and a hat to cover
your head and ears
take frequent breaks (pace yourself over exertion is not good)
be sure to bend your knees to help with lifting rather than bending over and
putting the strain/stress on your lower back

You can always hire a neighborhood teenager or a professional service. Then again there has also been a sighting of the snow fairy so you may be in luck.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Human Hearts Unite Around The World!

A few weeks has passed since the earthquake in Haiti. With grateful hearts we give thanks to all those who responded from around the world. The first responders arrived and assisted with the rescue and relief efforts. We understand that the people of Haiti will need a tremendous amount of help for many years to come. Let's plan to continue to give even after the dust settles.