Five Best Tips for Putting Your Best Fork Forward to Shed the Winter Pounds

Healthy resolutions for the New Year 2017.

Did you know that March is National Nutrition Month?  Every year, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics generates a nutrition, education and information campaign.  This year’s message is “Put Your Best Fork Forward.”

Each person has the tools to make healthy dietary choices.  Now  that winter is coming to an end, and spring is approaching, it is a wonderful time to reflect on our current habits and lifestyle and decide which tools we will use to shed some excess weight gained over the winter months.

Tool #1 – Balance

  • Visit Choose My Plate at https://www.choosemyplate.gov/ – Use the “my plate” method of ½ plate non starchy veggies, ¼ plate protein, ¼ plate fiber rich carbohydrate to balance your nutrients throughout the day.
  • Drink water or mild instead of sweetened beverages (soda or juice).
  • Eat healthy snacks, such as fruits/nuts with yogurt or crackers with peanut butter.
  • Substitute processed or artificially flavored food items with natural unprocessed foods. By skipping the cookies and having a piece of fruit, you will get more vitamins and fiber allowing your body to feel more energized throughout the day.

Tool #2 – Let’s get Physical

Physical activity, in any form, is imperative for managing weight. Some ways to get more active are:

  • Consider non weight bearing exercises such as using resistance bands for building muscle and increasing flexibility, stationary bike or water aerobics.
  • Walking 10,000 steps per day is equivalent to walking five miles! Aim to achieve as many steps as possible throughout the day such as parking your car a little further from your destination, taking the stairs instead of the elevator and partaking in walking breaks, especially if you are sitting for most of the day.
  • March gives us extra daylight, so the best way to utilize this extra time is by being active. Activities such as walking, jogging, gardening, swimming and yoga are perfect ways to spend 30 minutes doing an outside activity.

Tool #3 – Reduce Stress

  • Everyone has stress which can obstruct weight loss. Stress increased the hormone called cortisol, which can contribute to weight gain.  Stress also contributes to emotional eating and other damaging behaviors.
  • It is important to ask for help and have support to get through the daily stressors of life. Consider support groups, meditation, coloring, knitting or spending time with a loved one to relieve the stressors in your daily life and help you stay focused and on track of your goals and progress.

Tool #4 – Be SMART About Your Goals

By setting SMART goals, results are greater!  SMART goals encompass five parameters to make the goal more productive:

S          is the SPECIFICS of the goal.  Is the goal definable?

M         is the MEASURABILITY of the goal. Is it possible to track/measure progress?

A          is ATTAINABILITY of the goal.  Is the goal a reasonable one ?

R          is RELEVENCY of the goal.  Is the goal worthwhile and will it meet your needs?

T          is TIMELINESS of the goal.  How much time can you give to accomplishing goals?

Tool #5 – Track Your Progress

  • Keep a diary or journal and record your progress and shortcomings.
  • Keep a food log and track your dietary intake.
  • “There’s an App for that” – There are so many wonderful Apps for goal setting and tracking caloric intake, physical activity, etc., utilize the technology on your smart phone or tablet to monitor your progress.

This article was submitted by Sadia Tahir Khan MS, RD and Michelle Hill, RD, CDN, CDE, Food and Nutrition Department of Flushing Hospital Medical Center

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Resolve to Eat Right

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With the holidays drawing to a close, it will soon be the time for resolutions.  Why not make eating right a part of your resolution.

Eating right doesn’t have to be complicated.  You can begin with a simple shift to lean meats, fruits, vegetables, and complex carbohydrates into your nutritional regimen while lessening your intake of processed foods, white flour and sugar.

For more information on eating right, contact the Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s  Ambulatory Care Center at  718-670-5486 to speak with a nutritionist.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Low Sugar, Easy Bake Oatmeal Cherry Cookies Cookies

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With the holidays approaching, we are talking about food and baking much for often than any other time of the year.

Colleagues are bringing in their homemade bakes cookies These comforting and joyous morsels make great snacks and are sweet enough to satisfy the sweetest of sweet tooths.

But, oh the sugar and calories!

With regard to calories and nutrition, cookies:

  • Depending on their ingredients, can have varying number of calories.
  • Most of these calories are associated with sugar and fats used to make them.
  • The nutrients  are also dependent on the ingredients used.
  • The nutritional details  are usually available on the nutritional label on the back of the cookie box.

If you are a “cookie monster” and want to indulge without any of the guilt, try these Oatmeal Cherry Cookies from Prevention.com

Oatmeal Cherry Cookies

1 c whole grain pastry flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ c packed brown sugar
⅓ c granulated sugar
¼ c unsweetened applesauce
2 Tbsp canola oil
1 lg egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1½ c old-fashioned rolled oats
¾ c dried cherries

1. PREHEAT the oven to 375°F. Coat 2 large baking sheets with cooking spray.
2. COMBINE the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl.
3. COMBINE the brown sugar and granulated sugar, applesauce, oil, egg, and vanilla in a large bowl. Stir until well blended. Add the flour mixture and stir until combined. Stir in the oats and cherries.
4. DROP the batter by rounded teaspoonfuls, 2″ apart, onto the prepared baking sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden brown. Let stand on the baking sheets for 2 minutes before removing to a rack to cool completely.

NUTRITION (per serving) 72 cal, 1.5 g pro, 13.5 g carb, 1.5 g fiber,  7 g sugars, 1.5 g fat, .1 g sat fat, 77.5 mg sodium

PREP TIME: 15 min / COOK TIME: 10 min / TOTAL TIME: 27 min
SERVINGS: 30

Enjoy!

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Obesity and the Risk for Cancer

Woman measuring waist of overweight  man with tape measure, middle section

Woman measuring waist of overweight man with tape measure, middle section

Obesity is defined as a condition where a person has an abnormally high proportion of body fat.  People who are obese because of the higher concentration of fat tissue; tend to be at higher risk of developing certain types of cancers including:
• Esophageal
• Pancreatic
• Colon and Rectum
• Breast (post menopause)
• Endometrial
• Kidney
• Thyroid
• Gallbladder
There are many reasons that obesity may raise the risk of developing cancer. These include:
• People who are obese have high levels of body fat which triggers an increase in estrogen production. Higher than normal levels of estrogen is associated with an increased risk of developing breast, endometrial and other types of cancer.
• Obese people are often found to have increased levels of insulin in their blood which can promote the growth of certain tumors
• Fat cells produce hormones called adipokines that can stimulate tumor growth
• People who are obese have chronic low level inflammation that can increase the risk for certain cancers.
While the evidence is not conclusive, it is believed that losing weight, and more importantly body fat, can help prevent the risk of cancer. Maintaining a healthy weight is beneficial to your overall health  and can  be accomplished by eating well and exercising.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with a physician at Flushing Hospital to discuss weight loss, and to learn more about Bariatric Surgery as an option, please call 718-670-5486.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Small Changes = Big Benefits

Seniors exercising with dumbbells in a health club

When looking for a routine that can bring wellness to your entire being, you don’t have to climb a mountain in Tibet or strip away all food you love.  Experts say that the best way to bring a wellness routine into your life is through a series of small changes that will gradually make a difference.

Changes such as:

  • Meditation – Take a moment in the morning to meditate.  It will set the tone for the day and clear your head to prepare for what the day may bring.
  • Music – Play calming music.  The body’s internal rhythms sync with the rhythms of music. By focusing on the music and its melody, you will start to feel your breathing and heart rate begin to slow down, bringing you to a much calmer place
  • Plan a trip – According to research, happiness spikes when planning a trip.
  • Put down your smartphone – When the impulse to pick up your phone comes, and you resist it, you may feel a wave of anxiety.  Don’t panic! Breath through the anxiety and you will see that there is calm that will follow.
  • Breathe deeply – Sit in a comfortable place, breathe naturally and settle your attention on your breath.  With each inhale and exhale, mentally repeat the words “in” and “out.”  Even if you mind wanders, don’t get distracted; just bring your attention back to your breathing.
  • Don’t check your email when you first wake up – When you wake, sit silently and allow your mind to wander. Take 10 minutes to just center yourself before you start your day.
  • Walk – Use part of your lunch break to take a walk.  This activity will aid with digestion, keep you active and relieve stress.

No one likes change and it rarely comes easy.  That’s why slowly incorporating small steps toward your goals overtime can lead to huge changes in the long run.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Tips for Keeping the Weight You Lost-Off

before and after weight loss - CONTESTLosing weight is a great achievement but is only half the battle. The new challenge that lies ahead is keeping the pounds you have lost from returning.

The key to keeping the weight off is to make long-term lifestyle changes that will not only keep you looking good but improve your overall health.  Following these tips can help you along your journey of maintaining a healthy weight:

  • Stick to a low-calorie diet- It has been shown that eating a diet that is low-fat and low-calorie can help maintain weight loss.
  • Remain physically active- Do not abandon your exercise routine once you have shed pounds. Find a regimen that you can incorporate into your schedule.
  • Get enough sleep- Studies show that people who are sleep-deprived are more likely to crave unhealthy food.
  • Do not skip meals- Skipping meals may make you hungrier than normal and cause you to overeat.
  • Self-monitoring- Routinely weigh yourself and track your food intake to ensure you are maintaining a healthy weight.
  • Plan meals ahead and stock your kitchen- Planning healthy meals ahead and stocking your kitchen with healthy food can lessen the chances of you diverting back to unhealthy eating habits.

For information about the Bariatric(Weight Loss) Surgery Services at Flushing Hospital or procedures performed by our doctors, please call 718-670-8908

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Summer Health Risks for the Obese

With the warmer weather upon us, the chances of suffering heat exhaustion or dehydration are high – and for those who are obese, the risks are even greater.

Silhouette of an tired sportsman at sunset

Health officials list obesity as a major risk factor for heat-related illness because fat is a natural insulator that traps core body heat so the extra layers of fat make it more difficult for the body to release heat. The body will attempt to cool itself by circulating blood to dissipate heat through the skin. An overweight or obese person’s heart must pump even harder on a hot day to circulate blood, and when it can’t meet the body’s demands, the person could pass out…or even worse.

Obesity is a serious health risk all year round, but in the summer the condition is especially dangerous. To combat obesity, Flushing Hospital Medical Center offers a Bariatric Weight Loss Program to the community.

Flushing Hospital’s Bariatric Center is comprised of a multi-disciplinary group of health care providers that are compassionate and fully invested in helping you in every step of your weight loss journey. The service is highlighted by our variety of advanced robotic surgery options available to those who qualify. Our surgeons perform procedures with the aid of the da Vinci surgical robot. This method of surgery is minimally invasive; studies report patients experience shorter hospital stays, less scarring, shorter recovery times and less pain. Other services include: physician monitoring, pre and post-surgical evaluations, personalized dietary and nutritional counseling, and ongoing education and support.

To learn more about Flushing Hospital’s Division of Bariatric surgery, please call 718-670- 8908 or visit our website at www.flushinghospital.org

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Is Obesity Culturally Influenced ?

Obesity Culturally InfluencedObesity is a problem that is well known but not well controlled in the United States today. It has become a very big problem for both men and women and affects all racial, socioeconomic and ethnic groups, but how much does culture contribute to someone’s obesity risk factor?  People who are defined as being obese are severely overweight and are also at greater risk of developing circulatory problems, diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular problems.
Cultural factors play a role in why some groups of people are more likely to become obese during their lifetime. To understand how cultural factors play a role in obesity one has to understand that a culture is a set of rules, learned by sharing experiences, of a certain group of people. A group of people who share the same culture also share the same values and have shared experiences. How that group defines what is an acceptable way of eating, and how they appear to others is what makes them unique. There are some cultures for example that see being overweight as a sign of affluence because food may be scarce in that region.
People who share a cultural background tend to reside in the same neighborhood. An example of this would be when immigrants from other countries or from different parts of the same country, migrate to an area, these people tend to eat foods that are familiar to them.  Those food choices may not be healthy but are comforting and may be eaten in quantities that are excessive.
Where people live and what resources they have available to them also can play a role in what choices they make are available for healthy eating. People who eat a lot of fast food because of its low cost are consuming food that is high in calories, fats, and refined sugars, all of which contribute to becoming obese in the long term.  Fresh fruit and vegetables which are more beneficial to overall weight control tend to be more expensive and therefore not eaten as often.  People living in societies  that are more economically developed tend to be more obese than in parts of the country that are rural because they are more likely to eat prepared , packaged, and processed foods.
There has been a slow increase in the number of people who care considered to be obese in the United States and this is due to poor choices in foods and less physical activity, influenced by culture changes and lifestyles. People make choices in how they live their lives, and a society that allows for poor choices on how they eat, get physical activity and spend their leisure time will be doomed to an even greater population of obese people.
It is important for people with poor eating habits to adopt healthier diets.  To schedule an appointment with a physician at Flushing Hospital who can help you to improve your diet, please call 718-670-5486.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

How Important is Eating Breakfast?

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How important is eating a healthy breakfast to you? Please share your daily morning routine with us. Do you make the time for a healthy breakfast every morning?

Here’s what we know, breakfast is STILL the most important meal of the day.  It provides you with the energy and nutrients that lead to increased concentration whether in the classroom or at work.

Some benefits of eating a healthy breakfast are:

  • Reduces the chance of developing diabetes
  • Reduces the incidence of heart disease
  • Improves cognitive functions related to memory

Additionally, studies have shown that breakfast can be important in maintaining a healthy body weight.

Translation – Eating breakfast is a smart move!

 

 

 

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Is High Blood Pressure Affecting your Kidneys?

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High blood pressure is the second leading cause of kidney failure in the United States after diabetes.

High blood pressure, also known as Hypertension, can damage blood vessels in the kidneys, reducing their ability to work properly. When the force of blood flow is high, blood vessels stretch so blood flows more easily. Eventually, this stretching scars and weakens blood vessels throughout the body, including those in the kidneys.

If the kidneys’ blood vessels are damaged, they may stop removing wastes and extra fluid from the body. Extra fluid in the blood vessels may then raise blood pressure even more, creating a dangerous cycle.

Most people with high blood pressure do not have symptoms. In rare cases, high blood pressure can cause headaches.

Kidney disease also does not have symptoms during its early stages. A person may have swelling called edema, which happens when the kidneys cannot get rid of extra fluid and salt. Edema can occur in the legs, feet, or ankles and less often in the hands or face.

Once kidney function decreases further, symptoms can include:

  • Appetite loss
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Drowsiness or feeling tired
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Sleep problems
  • Increased or decreased urination
  • Generalized itching or numbness
  • Dry skin
  • Headaches
  • Weight loss
  • Darkened skin
  • Muscle cramps
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain

Following a healthy eating plan can help lower blood pressure.  Your health care provider may recommend a dietary approach that includes foods that are low in fat and cholesterol, dairy that is fat-free or low-fat, fish, poultry and nuts, as well as, consuming less read meat, sweets and added sugars.

If you are experiencing symptoms and would like to speak with a physician, please call Flushing Hospital Medical Center’s Ambulatory Care Center at 718-670-5795.

 

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.