The Grainy Truth about Salt
Thanh Nguyen, M.D.
Is Salt Really Bad For You? Chances are you have heard that salt can lead to a host of cardiovascular problems from heart attacks to strokes. However, salt is actually an essential component to your healthy body. There are plenty of benefits to reap from salt, such as balancing your fluids and electrolytes. The real problem is consuming too much salt.
Excess salt can cause your body to retain fluids and create hormonal changes within your kidneys. Moreover, excess salt can cause blockages in your arteries that can lead to heart attacks, strokes or amputations. But monitoring your salt does not have to be stressful. It’s very important to find a happy medium in your salt consumption.
Prioritizing Family Nutrition
Julie Fortenberry, RD, LDN
Feeding an active family a nutritious menu is never easy, especially when time is short and picky eaters are on board. Just like there is no “one way” to parent, there is not “one way” to provide wellness to your family.
What is important is that you learn what works best for your group of loved ones, and make wellness a priority. Maybe it’s not searching the internet for healthy meals (that you don’t have time to cook at home), but it’s learning how to eat out at restaurants and make healthier choices. Maybe it’s not joining a gym like your best friend, but it’s finding exercises that you can do at home when the kids are in bed. Maybe it’s not making your picky eater clean his or her plate of spinach (like you have been taught to do), but teaching your child why we eat healthy foods.
Is Processed Meat a Carcinogen?
Liz Cabrera, RD, CSO, LDN, CNSC
In October 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that processed meats cause cancer. The WHO’s International agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified processed meat as a carcinogen–something that causes cancer. It also classified red meat as a probable carcinogen-something that probably causes cancer.
Consumers reading these headlines may be reacting in one of two ways:
- I will never eat processed meats or red meat again!
- I do not care how bad it is for you, I enjoy my Gumbo and Jambalaya with lots of smoked sausage.
It is always important to read beyond the headlines to get all the facts and make an informed choice that may impact your health.
Establishing Healthy Sleep Patterns:
Robert Gardner, Ph.D., LPC
Rest and refreshing sleep are essential to our good health. Sound sleep provides a total release from the pressures of everyday life. Few of us get through life without experiencing some difficulty with sleep patterns.
Sleep is controlled from a regulating center deep in the brain. It processes information from all parts of the body as well as the higher thought centers of the brain, or cerebral cortex. A low level of stimulation induces sleep, while a high level of stimulation leads to wakefulness.
A calm mind and body are necessary for satisfying sleep.
“Text Neck” – what it is and what you can do to prevent it
Could I live without my smartphone?
Monique Serpas, PT, DPT, OCS
I personally use my phone several times a day, and way more than just for making and receiving calls. It’s where I store my family’s calendar and grocery lists. It’s my dashboard navigator, giving me turn-by-turn directions and alerting me to traffic. I check the weather and news on it, send and reply to email, and take video and pictures of my two boys.
How Health and Fitness Apps Can Help You
Katie Schlemer, RD, LDN
For those of us who have smart phones, we use them for just about everything, and we should be taking advantage of the plethora of health apps available to us. Below are a few apps that can help you stay on track with whatever health goals you have.
Women should establish both a Primary Care Physician and an OB-GYN to manage their health
Jennifer Lapeyrolerie, M.D.
If you’re like many women, you have an OB/GYN who you would follow to the moon and back. He or she delivered your baby and has seen you at your best and your worst. You don’t miss your annual gynecologist visit. But who do you see when you’re sick? Do you try and tough it out, or do you turn to urgent care? A better answer: establish a primary care doctor who can manage your overall health, including sick visits, along with the care you receive from your OB/GYN and other specialists.
Your primary care provider takes care of your general health. But to manage your whole health—over your entire life—you’ll likely need to assemble a team of healthcare providers. For women, at the top of the must-have specialists list is a gynecologist.
What is heart-healthy eating?
Thanh Nguyen, M.D.
A diet high in fat and cholesterol may contribute to the development of heart disease in adulthood. A heart-healthy diet may help prevent or treat high blood cholesterol levels.
The American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Nutrition recommends that healthy children age 2 and older follow a diet low in fat (30% of calories from fat). These are the same recommendations for healthy adults. A diet high in fat, especially saturated fat, may increase your child’s risk for heart disease and obesity in adulthood.
It is important to teach your child about healthy eating so that he or she can make healthy food choices as adults.
Mardi Gras Safety: It’s all fun and parades until someone gets hurt!
Matthew Bernard, M.D.
With Carnival Season underway, many families are preparing for the fun and excitement that parades can bring. But before you yell “throw me somethin’ mister!” read these tips to ensure your family has a safe and happy Mardi Gras.
What is ovarian cancer?
Joan Cheng, M.D.
Ovarian cancer is a disease in which cancer starts in the cells of the ovary. There are 3 types of ovarian tumors, named for the tissue in which they are found:
- Epithelial cell – These are cells that cover the surface of the ovary. Most of these tumors are benign (noncancerous) and account for most cases of ovarian cancer.
- Germ cell – These are cells that form the eggs in the ovary.
- Stromal cell – These cells form the structural tissue of the ovary and produce female hormones.