Archive for November, 2010

Do you Want to Live to 100?
November 29, 2010

There have been some interesting studies lately on how to increase your life span. Some of the studies seem counterintuitive, some seem rather harsh and some are common sense. Some of the studies are on mice and have not progressed to human studies yet.

Caloric restriction, a forever diet, has shown to stave off age related diseases in mice and monkeys. The conclusion being that if the age related diseases are not present the person could live longer.  I of course ask, “Are they happy being on a permanent diet?” http://www.longevitymeme.org/topics/calorie_restriction.cfm

Another study surprisingly finds people who only get 5 to 6.5 hours of sleep a night live longer. Those who get less and 5 and more than 6.5 had a mortality rate increase of 2-4 times as those in the optimum sleep level. I of course ask “Who wants to live longer if you are tired all the time?”  http://www.journalsleep.org/ViewAbstract.aspx?pid=27780

Obviously no smoking, wear your seat belt, bike helmet and do everything in moderation is common sense. Get regular health and dental check-ups is helpful. Have a social group of friends and or family for optimum mental health.

Would you like to live to be 100? What if you cannot say, “If I have good health and all my mental abilities”? Would you go for triple digits?  If I grew up in a time when the life span was normal to be 100 would I do things differently? Would I pace my knees exposure to skiing only after 35 instead of 15? Would I never wear high heels to save my legs from shortened tendons?  It is interesting questions to ponder.  I can’t have a redo so I am happy with life as long as it goes but what about you?

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Menopause and Mel Gibson
November 22, 2010

I recently read a story that Mel Gibson is suggesting his recent melt down was due to male menopause. He is alleged to say he was “menopausal”! Can there be a collective eye roll and disgusted sigh sent to Mel?

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504763_162-20017401-10391704.html 

Menopause and menopausal symptoms get lots of jokes and blamed for many things that go wrong in women’s lives, some truly justified, but Mel?? Whether there is a male menopause or not is some -what of a debate. Men can lose some testosterone as they age, that is true. Menopause starts with the first 3 letters m.e.n. But I for one have to say blaming very bad behavior on menopause when one is a man, especially a celebrity, is not acceptable! Blaming very bad behavior on menopause for anyone I also think is not acceptable.

Help for menopause symptoms are readily available from physicians and many on line sites. If you Google ‘menopause’ a zillion pages come up to view, educate, interact, and help. Sites like http://www.empowher.com/ have doctors on line and a supportive chat area. A humorous site about menopause side effects done in good taste is http://www.minniepauz.com/.  Dee Adams the woman behind the site and the funny cartoons calls her informational material “Humor Replacement Therapy”.

Menopause symptoms for those of us in the throes can be tiresome, irritating, uncomfortable, embarrassing and difficult, but hardly in the same category as Mel Gibson’s tirade! Of course I could be wrong. Am I out of control about Mel being out of control? That’s right, I’m not and I truly am menopausal!

Movie Stardom
November 15, 2010

Did you ever want to be in the movies? Who hasn’t had a bit of a fantasy; big screen, gorgeous backgrounds, or exotic locations, costumes and make-up? Yes fantasies are great.

 I was able to participate in some of the fun of movie making in Hot Flash Havoc, http://www.hotflashhavoc.com/.

Since it is in documentary style, I am playing myself, a middle age menopausal woman. So much for the fantasy!

My naturopathic physician friend Kelly Jennings is also interviewed and filmed. Kelly treats effectively, and patiently many women with menopause and breast cancer symptoms. She is also young, smart and gorgeous! So my close up is Kelly giving me an acupuncture treatment. Yes indeed, that is me, the woman in repose with acupuncture needles all over her face, head and neck!

The film has a fantastic concept; educate and entertain about the condition called Menopause. There was a full page ad in More Magazine, the October issue.

The grass roots effort to distribute the film is ongoing. The movie won at the Aspen film festival this year! If you have 2,000 friends who want to see the film as a fund raiser for your favorite charity, contact the producers on the Hot Flash Havoc web site.

Tie One On for the Giving Season
November 9, 2010

National Tie One on Day, an apron of course, is November 24, 2010. EllynAnne Geisel of Apron Memories, http://www.apronmemories.com/, started this giving day tradition the day before Thanksgiving five years ago. She encourages embracing a “giving opportunity that has nothing to do with shopping or even getting into a car, but everything to do with our recognition of gratefulness and our ability to give to someone in need of spiritual or physical sustenance.”

EllynAnne goes on to say “Women clad in aprons have traditionally prepared the Thanksgiving meal and it is with in our historical linkage to share our bounty”

This year Haralee.Com is a sponsor for Tie One On Day. http://www.apronmemories.com/tie-one-on-day/

EllynAnne has become the patron saint of the Apron.

She writes about aprons, exhibits aprons, and sews and sells aprons on her web site. Her aprons have become famous with the Desperate Housewives character Bree wearing one, to the recent article in the upcoming AARP magazine.

When I came across the Apron Memories site I was infatuated. My very first sewing project was an apron, and I have loved them and sewing ever since. Just this year for my birthday two friends separately gave me aprons! After I read about EllynAnne’s ‘Tie One On Day’ I knew I had to get the word out. Join me and other apron wearing women spreading thanks the day before Thanksgiving.

Vitamin D, the Darling Vitamin in Breast Cancer Prevention?
November 1, 2010

Have you been tested for a vitamin D deficiency?  Most physicals for women now include a blood test for vitamin D levels. It appears that many of us are not getting enough Vitamin D naturally, out in the sun. Many make-up formulas include sun screen. Many moisturizers include sun screen. What this all means is the 10-15 minutes outside every day that is recommended for natural Vitamin D absorption just doesn’t happen.  For women with a history of skin cancers, being out in the sun is not a good idea.

Vitamin D deficiencies have been associated with breast cancer. Research continues. I heard a lecture about recommending Vitamin D to breast cancer survivors and on the way home; the store I tried to buy was sold out. The other 1,000 women at the lecture evidently had the same idea!  How much to take has to be determined from your blood test and your physician. The good news is the blood test can be part of all the testing for your annual check-up and the supplements are inexpensive.

There is a new study out and here is a quick take away:

“Women who are diagnosed with late-stage and aggressive breast cancer are more likely to have a low vitamin D level than women who have less aggressive cancer. Women who had blood plasma concentration of less than 20 ng/mL were eight times more likely to be diagnosed with regional or distal spread of cancer when compared to women who had normal vitamin D levels. The study also found that African American women were four times more likely to have low vitamin D levels compared with white women.”
 Here is a link to the entire study.

http://www.medpagetoday.com/HematologyOncology/BreastCancer/22543

Here is another informative synopsis:

http://www.webmd.com/breast-cancer/news/20101004/low-vitamin-d-linked-breast-cancer

One More:

http://drtorihudson.com/cancer-prevention/breast-cancer-prevention/vitamin-d-and-reduction-of-breast-cancer-risk/

Conclusion? Have the blood test for Vitamin D next office visit, especially if you are a breast cancer survivor.