Health and Fitness Roundup: In the News

In the good old days, at 21, not long before I started getting greys. 

Going grey? Forget hair dye, just cut down on your stress

Globe and Mail, August 22, 2011

Whoah, here’s an interesting article about going grey. I am going grey.

I foolishly dyed my hair in grade eight without my mother’s knowledge (or any knowledge of hair dye) and it came out the worst orange imaginable. It took about ten years to regain the desire to change the colour of my hair and I had it “expertly” coloured at a salon. It turned out a horrible purple-red.

Fast forward nearly another ten years and I decided to give it another go out of necessity – an ever-growing patch of hair right at my crown, of all places, is grey. Again, I had it coloured at a salon and, again, the colour is much to my dislike.

So I’ve decided (for the time being) to embrace grey. But this article suggests that I actually have some power in the matter. Researchers have shown that stress can lead to decreased levels of a protein called p53 which “protects cells from developing abnormalities and helps humans stay healthy.”

“This could give us a plausible explanation of how chronic stress may lead to a variety of human conditions and disorders, which range from merely cosmetic, like greying hair, to life-threatening disorders like malignancies,” says Robert Lefkowitz, a professor at Duke University Medical Center.

Read the full article here.


Even just 15 minutes of exercise a day will improve health

Globe and Mail, August 18, 2011

I tweeted about this article last week. Aren’t these findings great? There’s absolutely no excuse now. Anyone can do 15 minutes of exercise a day: turn on your favourite tunes and dance your heart out; go for a jog with your dog; drag a yoga mat to a quiet outdoor space for a few sun salutations. You can do it!

Read the full article here.


Parents 'need baby food cookery classes’

BBC News, August 18, 2011

Got a picky eater? It’s probably your fault. But don’t shoot the messenger, I’m just relaying information from an article by Dr Helen Coulthard for BBC News.

“By relying too much on ready prepared foods, with their attractive packaging of fruits and vegetables, we may be making it more difficult for our children to eat fruits and vegetables when they are older.

“Packaged foods may seem to parents like a convenient and safe weaning option. But an over-reliance on packets and jars sets a pattern of using ready-made foods. And it denies babies the chance to try the variety of tastes, textures and appearance that fresh foods have to offer.

“Research shows that there is a window of opportunity for introducing tastes and textures to young infants, before the age of 12 months. After 12 months, infants become much more difficult to feed, and often become wary of new foods.”

Read full article here.

Health and Fitness Roundup: In the News

New research shows these gorgeous little numbers might put me at risk for arthritis.

My daily reads include a range of entertainment and celebrity gossip as well as real news like the Globe and Mail, Vancouver Sun, and BBC News. Following is a roundup of interesting health and fitness news that I've recently come across.

Sorry, folks, but you have to diet - and exercise

Globe and Mail, June 12, 2011

This seems like a no-brainer to me, but one point I'd like to add is a benefit of a healthy diet and regular exercise regime beyond battling obesity (which the article is about), and even beyond overall physical health: improved mental health.

Arthritis warning to women who wear high heels

BBC News, June 10, 2011

Ack, why do things that look so good have to be so bad for you?

Exercise, diet, precautions are key in preventing seniors from falling

Globe and Mail, May 30, 2011

I worked in seniors' fitness for a number of years and, unfortunately, it's very true that "Falls often mark the beginning of a deadly downward spiral in the health of seniors." I also agree with Karim Khan of Vancouver's Centre for Hip Health and Mobility that "falls can be reduced through strength and balance training", and think that it's never too early to start. My oldest clients were a couple (one of the sweetest couples I've ever met) and were 102 and 98 years old. They were active their whole lives and it showed. Even at their age, they went for walks and played pool nearly every day. What an inspiration!

New study shows how caffeine might prevent pregnancy

Vancouver Sun, May 25, 2011

I seem to have a lot of girlfriends who are planning on starting families very soon, so I thought this was timely. According to the article, researchers have "discovered that caffeine prevents smooth muscles in the Fallopian tubes from contracting — and it's those slow, rhythmic contractions that shuttle eggs down the tubes, from the ovaries to the womb." So ladies who want babies, put the java down!