My Year To Thrive

"My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style." ~Maya Angelou

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Exercise May Prevent Stress and Anxiety, Study Suggests | MedlinePlus


A new study from researchers at the University of Maryland School of Public Health found that moderate exercise can help people manage future stress and anxiety, and the emotional and mental health benefits of exercise may last long after a workout ends.

MedLine Plus guy on a treadmill

Exercise May Prevent Stress and Anxiety, Study Suggests: MedlinePlus

File this under interesting, but not surprising.  Naturally, I am a big advocate of exercise for mental health so I thought I’d share.

“While it is well known that exercise improves mood, among other benefits, not as much is known about the potency of exercise’s impact on emotional state and whether these positive effects endure when we’re faced with everyday stressors once we leave the gym,” J. Carson Smith, assistant professor in the university’s department of kinesiology, said in a university news release. “We found that exercise helps to buffer the effects of emotional exposure. If you exercise, you’ll not only reduce your anxiety, but you’ll be better able to maintain that reduced anxiety when confronted with emotional events.”

They studied exercise & quiet time for helping with stress & anxiety, & while they both helped immediately, exercise was the most helpful over time.

Read the entire article




Health Tip: Use Proper Form When Running: MedlinePlus

Using proper running form can help prevent injuries and make running a little easier and more comfortable. 

Knee MRI shot from Wikipedia

Health Tip: Use Proper Form When Running: MedlinePlus.
(Image used from Wikipedia.)

This was just one of their brief bullet point articles, so not much to cull from for a blurb, so here is the bullet list:

  • Bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle and keep them close to your body, with your hands relaxed.
  • Relax your shoulders and keep them down; drive from your shoulders, not your elbows.
  • Avoid leaning forward at the waist, but keep a slight forward lean at the ankles.
  • Lift your knees higher as they move forward.
  • Hit the ground with your heel, rolling forward onto the ball of your foot. As you lift your foot off the ground, push-off with the front of your foot.
  • Hold your head steady and level, and try not to bounce.
I’m not back to running yet, but I’m trying to get back out there.  I have walked & tried doing a few other things, but my ankle/foot is still bothering me, along with some intermittent pain in my lower back. More on that behind the jump. Continue reading

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Complicated link between diet drinks, health: study: MedlinePlus

Diet Coke Products

Came across this & I know the issue is bandied about a lot.  These are some interesting findings.

Several studies have found that people who regularly down diet soda are more likely than people who don’t to have certain risk factors for those chronic diseases — like high blood pressure and high blood sugar.

And one recent study became the first to link the beverages to the risk of actual heart attacks and strokes (see Reuters Health story of February 17, 2012).

Still, researchers have not been able to say whether it’s the sugar-free drinks, themselves, that deserve the blame.

Many factors separate diet- and regular-beverage drinkers — and, for that matter, people who stick with water. Overall diet is one.

So this latest study tried to account for people’s general diet patterns, said lead researcher Kiyah J. Duffey, of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. (Hit the link below for the rest of the article.)

I like this study because they don’t claim to have any hard & fast answers, they just present their findings.  What I wonder when looking at this is

  1. What are the non-diet soda drinkers drinker?  Water is mentioned in the article, but when they talk about the group who didn’t typically drink diet sodas, they didn’t say what they drank instead.  Is it water?  Or do they simply favor regular sodas?  Probably water, but I think it’s a fair question.
  2. Why do the diet soda drinkers drink diet soda?  I think that answer could explain some of the difference, although as is pointed out the overall diet made the biggest difference.  Still, again, I think it’s a fair question.  You can never have too much information when doing research.

Complicated link between diet drinks, health: study: MedlinePlus.

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Gene Might Boost Risk for Obesity: MedlinePlus

Scientists have discovered a genetic mutation that makes some people more prone to gain extra weight from a high fat diet.  They make mention of the regulation or appetite & the production of fat cells, but I’m not sure they are exactly saying this gene mutation is responsible for that, or if they just meant they were studying those areas in general.

They even have a test for the mutation.  It costs $200.  Not cheap, but less than I’d imagine.  Can’t say I’ve been price checking genetic tests though.

Not sure what you could really do with this info, since high fat diets are generally considered unhealthy anyway.  It could be a more severe issue than this article lets on however, so a greater intervention that just not eating a high fat diet could be needed.  But either way I thought it was interesting.  Who knows what this could lead to or what they might find next.

Gene Might Boost Risk for Obesity: MedlinePlus