August is National Immunization Month


(StatePoint) August, which is National Immunization Month, is a great reminder to keep your family up-to-date on important vaccines. With the kids headed back to school and the upcoming flu season ahead, everyone, young and old, should brush up on the facts about vaccines, say experts. For example, did you know that most healthy adults are advised to get vaccines to protect their health? Anyone can become ill from infectious disease if he or she isn’t properly immunized. Most adults should get an annual influenza vaccine, as well as a Tdap booster shot every ten years, say doctors. Children heading to crowded classrooms are especially at risk for spreading or acquiring illnesses. Parents should check with their pediatricians before the school year about what immunizations their children need to stay healthy for the year ahead. From measles, mumps and rubella to polio, booster shots are crucial life-saving medical care for …

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Eating Raw Veggies Best for Blood Pressure


Your blood pressure benefits when you eat lots of veggies. A recent study suggests the biggest benefit may come from eating your vegetables raw. In the study, researchers from Imperial College in London followed nearly 2,200 people from Japan, People’s Republic of China, United Kingdom and the United States for three years. The researchers wanted to see how the vegetables the people ate would affect their blood pressure. The researchers also were interested in whether there is a difference in health benefits between eating cooked or raw vegetables. Results showed that raw vegetables were associated with a lower blood pressure overall. The researchers did not count cooked white potatoes and sweet potatoes as vegetables because of their high starch content. What’s the difference between cooked and raw? What’s the nutritional difference between cooked and raw? When you cook vegetables, you change their chemical composition. Depending on the method, cooking can …

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Regular Exercise Can Help Kids Do Better in School


Physical activity may not be the first thing parents or teachers think about when they want to boost a child’s academic performance, but evidence supports the notion that a bit of exercise for the body is beneficial to the brain as well. In fact, kindergarteners who participated in Build Our Kids’ Success (BOKS), a free before-school program involving physical activity and nutrition education, had significantly improved memory skills as rated by teachers, compared to their peers who did not participate. A study of the children’s performance also concluded that those who participated in the program exhibited good behavior in the classroom. “A sedentary life and poor eating habits can lower kids’ performance in the classroom and start a cycle of health problems later in life,” says Kathleen Tullie, Founder and Executive Director of BOKS and the Director of Social Responsibility for Reebok. “Simply stated, a healthy body and a healthy …

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How To Decode A Sunscreen Label: The Truth About Hypoallergenic, SPF 100, And Other Claims


Natural, tear-free, sting-free, and pediatrician recommended. These are just some of the claims sunscreen manufacturers make on their product labels. They may sound authoritative, but many claims are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, and some are unclear or misleading. Here’s the truth about the most common ones. Claim: Enriched with antioxidants What it really means: Many sunscreen labels have added antioxidants and in theory it makes sense. Sunscreens work by absorbing or scattering the sun’s harmful rays and can generate cell-damaging free radicals. Antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E, can neutralize free radicals. But a recent study of 12 products enriched with antioxidants showed that the compounds had little or no benefit. It’s difficult to make such a product because antioxidants aren’t stable. To be effective, the antioxidants need to be present in high concentrations and penetrate skin. Claim: Tear-free and sting-free What it really means: …

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Tips To Make Summer Slim Down Simple


(StatePoint) The irony of summer is that for many people, it’s the most important time of year to stay fit, but it can actually be the hardest time of year to stick to one’s diet. “Too many weight loss plans are not designed for the reality of everyday living, especially in summer when there can be extra challenges like vacations, family barbecues and a general change of pace,” says Dr. Anthony Fabricatore, Ph.D., Vice President of Research and Development at Nutrisystem. But dieters can stay on track no matter where life takes them with these simple tips. Make Time to Exercise Daily exercise is important for weight maintenance, weight loss and general health. So don’t let your exercise routine take a vacation when you do. Skip the shuttle bus at the amusement park and walk from attraction to attraction. At the pool? Take breaks from lounging to swim laps. Whenever …

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5 Tips to Help You Snack Healthier at Work


iTriage Eating healthy doesn’t apply solely to what you consume for breakfast, lunch and dinner. That is, unless the only time you eat is at mealtimes. Most of us, however, like to have a couple of snacks during the day. The right snacks can help us to focus mentally by taking the edge off our hunger and can provide a much-needed energy boost until the next meal. It’s important to choose wisely when selecting your snacks. You may eat the healthiest lunches in the office, but all of those salad greens and turkey sandwiches on whole-grain breads won’t amount to much if you’re noshing on junk between meals. Junk food such as candy bars, soda and potato chips won’t help power you through your afternoon — and consistent consumption of junk foods can harm your body over the long run by boosting your risk for disease. One strategy to make …

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CDC’s Health Alert Network recently published an advisory to clinicians regarding new WHO polio vaccination requirements for travel by residents of and long-term visitors to countries with active polio transmission


“U.S. clinicians should be aware of possible new vaccination requirements for patients planning travel for greater than four weeks to countries with ongoing poliovirus transmission. The May 5 WHO statement names 10 such countries, three designated as “exporting wild poliovirus” (Cameroon, Pakistan and Syria [Syrian Arab Republic]) that should “ensure” recent (4 to 52 weeks before travel) polio boosters among all departing residents and long-term travelers (of more than 4 weeks), and an additional seven countries “infected with wild poliovirus” (Afghanistan, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Iraq, Somalia and Nigeria) that should “encourage” recent polio vaccination boosters among residents and long-term travelers.”

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Boca Regional Urgent Care Provides Free Sports Physicals


Now through the end of September 2014, Boca Regional Urgent Care will provide free Sports Physicals for students requiring one to participate in a team sport. Please bring in your required forms. A parent or legal guardian must accompany student. Come in any day from 2pm-7pm. No appointment necessary.

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5 skin-saving facts about sunscreen


iTriage Using sunscreen correctly can help prevent skin cancer and signs of aging Sunscreen may be big business, but not nearly enough of us seem to buy into its importance. More than half of the respondents in a new Consumer Reports survey say they usually skip sunscreen. It’s not surprising, then, that the incidence of nonmelanoma skin cancers, the most common types, has reached alarming proportions—up 77 percent in the last 14 years—and rates of melanoma, the mostly deadly form of skin cancer, have also increased. Knowing the facts can save your birthday suit—and possibly your life. 1. You’re never too old to start wearing sunscreen For years, experts wrongly believed that people got most of their sun exposure before age 18. Here’s the reality: By age 40, you’ve racked up only half of your lifetime dose of UV rays; by age 60, just 74 percent. And for those older …

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Eight Myths About The Common Cold


In life, we face few experiences as universal as the itchy throat, runny nose, congested chest and other discomforts that come with the common cold. Even fewer illnesses are as surrounded by theories, old wives’ tales and other misperceptions as the common cold. Myth: Exposure to cold air or changes in temperature cause colds. Fact: Nearly all colds are caused by a variety of respiratory viruses, the most common of which is rhinovirus. Viruses are passed from person to person through contact with secretions from an infected person. These secretions can be coughed into the air and come directly in contact with another person’s nose, mouth or eyes, or can be transferred through hand-to-hand contact or contact with contaminated objects or surfaces. So, cold air does not have an impact on whether you contract a cold. Myth: Antibiotics can cure a cold. Fact: You can treat the symptoms of a …

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