Health:

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Nutrition
On The Go
Weight Control Problem Nutritious Milk Trampoline Safety Help With Head Lice Teething Babies Colic: No Crying Matter

Cerebral Palsy

Healthy Eating On The Go

pic(NAPSI)—Today’s families are more on the go than ever, spending many hours each week in the car, making it seem hard to make time for your family to eat healthy, nutritious foods.

Increased time spent in the car has led many families to eat on the go. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 48 percent of the money spent on food in this country pays for meals eaten away from the home.

During hectic days, families need energy to keep them going, but they often end up choosing more convenient foods that are high in fat, added sugar and calories.

This year, you can introduce your family to the idea of GO, SLOW and WHOA foods to help them eat healthier. GO foods are low in fat, sugar and calories and are “nutrient dense” (rich in vitamins and other nutrients). Try to avoid SLOW and WHOA foods that are higher in fat, added sugar and calories and that, often, offer fewer nutrients.

Whether you’re off to a Saturday away game or driving your children to their weekly activities, use these tips for healthier eating:

• Pack GO foods ahead of time. If you have a busy day with your family planned-including time in the car-pack healthy snacks in a small cooler or tote bag before you leave. Consider water, fresh fruit or veggies, low-fat cheese sticks, whole-grain crackers or a low-sugar cereal portioned into baggies.

• Make healthy choices at fast-food restaurants. Sometimes, when you are traveling by car, fast food is the only option. Try making healthier choices such as sandwiches without cheese, salads with low-fat or fat-free dressing, replacing French fries with sliced fruit, and swapping fried meats for grilled options.

• Read the labels. Stopping at convenience stores for a snack can easily lead to unhealthy choices. Looking at the nutrition label can help you and your children make the best choice. Pick snacks or beverages that are low in calories and added sugar-some stores stock fat-free or low-fat yogurt, fruit or individually portioned trail mix. Try to re-member that some prepackaged foods may look like a single serving but actually contain multiple servings.

For more information on maintaining a healthy diet, visit the We Can!(Ways to Enhance Children’s Activity & Nutrition)® website at www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/obesity/wecan/eat-right/choosing-foods.htm.

Developed by the National Institutes of Health, We Can! provides parents, caregivers and communities with free tips, tools and guidance to help children maintain a healthy weight.

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Charge Up Your Teens With Healthy Meals

pic(NAPSI)—There’s good news for parents. Even with busy schedules and the stress that can accompany school and activities, it can be easier than you think for you to help your teens make healthy food choices.

In fact, healthy eating may help teens charge up and stay alert. Plus, eating well may help them stay healthy and fit over the years. It’s a habit that can start early in life and continue on-and it may also lower the risk for type 2 diabetes, asthma, heart disease and some forms of cancer.

To help, here are some tips from the Weight-control Information Network (WIN).

Give Teens the Right Fuel

• Make half of the plate fruits and vegetables.

• Encourage them to eat more foods like bananas and beans for potassium, and yogurt for calcium. These nutrients help to build strong bones.

• Suggest water or fat-free/ low-fat milk instead of sugar-sweetened drinks.

Start Strong and Plan Ahead

• Teens should start their day with a healthy breakfast.

• Pack a healthy lunch. This might be a turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread and an apple.

• Tell teens to take it easy on pizza, sweets and sodas. These have lots of sugar, salt and fat.

A Free Tip Sheet

These tips and more are in the tip sheet “Charge Up! Healthy Meals and Snacks for TEENS.” Contact WIN for a copy to put on your refrigerator, in your teen’s locker or in a helpful place.

WIN is a national information service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health.

For more information, call WIN at (877) 946-4627 or visit www.win.niddk.nih.gov. Also, you can read WIN’s free publication “Charge Up! Healthy Meals and Snacks for TEENS” at www.win.niddk.nih.gov/publications/PDFs/ChargeUp_tip.pdf.

In addition, you or your teen can “like” WIN at www.facebook.com/win.niddk.nih.gov.

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Deciphering The Dairy Case: Secrets, Stories And Facts About Milk

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(NAPSI)—Drink—milk—to your good health. A few facts can help you and your family enjoy the many great nutrients and health benefits that milk can offer while customizing your milk choice.

• Milk’s been a part of the American diet since the 1600s! The first dairy cow arrived on the East Coast in the Jamestown Colony around 1611 and priests brought cows to the West Coast via Baja, California, around 1679.

• Today, milk goes from cow to dairy aisle in just about two days, which means getting the freshest possible beverage is as easy as a trip to the grocery store.

• Milk helps build strong bones and scientists now say it also helps reduce blood pressure, boost immunity, ward against diabetes, protect against certain types of cancer and can even help you lose weight.

• One cup of milk costs about 25 cents and is loaded with vitamins and nutrients like calcium, vitamin D, protein and potassium.

• To get the same calcium in a glass of milk, you’d have to eat 12 servings of whole grains, 10 cups of raw spinach or 6 servings of beans (legumes), so raise a glass!

• Lactose-free milk is a great option for people who have lactose intolerance. They may also be able to tolerate foods cooked with milk or eat cheese and yogurt.

• Pediatricians recommend that kids drink whole or reduced-fat milk between the ages of 1 and 2. At this age, children need fat in their diets for nerve and brain development and milk is a good source, plus it’s one that most kids like.

• Most Americans fall below the three cups of milk a day recommended by the USDA—but there are many easy and enjoyable ways to serve milk: glasses with dinner, cream soups, lattes, pudding for dessert, even hot cocoa to start your day or wind down your night. For example, here’s one great way to enjoy milk:

Chocorazz Smoothie

1 medium banana, sliced and frozen

1 cup fat-free chocolate milk

½ cup raspberry low-fat yogurt

Place banana, chocolate milk and yogurt in blender. Cover and blend until smooth. Pour into 2 glasses. Serve immediately.

Learn More

You can get more facts, tips and recipes from Dairy Council of California, online at www.HealthyEating.org/milk-dairy and at (866) 572-1359.

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Trampoline Safety

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(NAPSI)—Trampolining can be an exciting activity. It also can create hazardous conditions.

Orthopaedic surgeons and ER staff treat more than 100,000 trampoline-related injuries each year. The most common injuries are sprains and fractures, which result from falls on the trampoline mat, frame or springs; collisions with another jumper; stunts gone wrong; and falls off the trampoline.

“Trampolines can be fun for kids and adults, but they also pose a high risk for injuries, especially when two or more people jump at one time,” said Matthew B. Dobbs, MD and spokesperson for the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS). “Orthopaedic surgeons recommend that families avoid trampoline recreation centers and trampolines not be used in home environments or in outdoor playgrounds because of the high risk of injuries.”

In an effort to reduce the number and severity of injuries, the AAOS came up with these tips:

• Trampolines should not be used for unsupervised recreational activity. Use of trampolines for physical education, competitive gymnastics, diving training and similar activities requires careful adult supervision and proper safety measures.

• Competent adult supervision and instruction are needed for children at all times.

• Allow only one participant at a time.

• Spotters should be present when participants are jumping. Somersaults or high-risk maneuvers should be avoided unless there is proper instruction and protective equipment, such as a harness.

• The trampoline-jumping surface should be at ground level.

• Supporting bars, strings and landing surfaces should have adequate protective padding.

• Check equipment regularly.

• Trampolines are not for children under age 6.

• Remove trampoline ladders after use to prevent unsupervised access.

Learn more at http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00291, www.facebook.com/AAOS1 and www.twitter.com/AAOS1.


 

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Help With Head Lice

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(NAPSI)—There’s good news for parents who have concerns about head lice. First, you’re not alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the U.S., an estimated 6 to 12 million infestations occur each year among children 3 to 11 years of age.

Head lice are tiny, wingless, parasitic insects that live on human hair and feed on small amounts of blood drawn from the scalp. They are spread by direct contact with the head or hair of someone already infested. People cannot catch head lice from pets.

If you suspect that a family member is infected, there is no need to panic. The first step is to check all members of the family for both lice and eggs. Infestation may cause itching, a tickling sensation, irritability and small sores, but it’s important to consider other causes before assuming that head lice are to blame.

Detecting head lice is easy. A close examination of the hair and scalp will reveal white or grayish crawling forms, about the size of a sesame seed, with six legs (lice) and yellowish white eggs (nits) attached to hair shafts close to the scalp.

Should lice and eggs be found, the next step is to gather up all combs, brushes, linens and clothes and wash them in hot water (greater than 130°F). The CDC suggests that if head lice fall off the scalp and cannot feed, they survive less than one or two days. However, some experts recommend sealing items that cannot be washed or dry-cleaned (such as stuffed animals and hair accessories) in plastic bags for two weeks until the lice and eggs die.

When it comes to treating your family, you don’t have to resort to harsh chemical solutions: Safe, effective and natural remedies are available.

Scientific studies have found that Quit Nits Advance Lice Treatment can kill head lice and eggs without exposing children and pregnant or nursing mothers to toxic chemicals. Quit Nits products, including an Everyday Preventative Spray, are safe to use as frequently as required. (These statements are based upon traditional homeopathic practice. They have not been reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration.)

For valuable offers, more information about homeopathic Quit Nits and facts on head lice, visit www.QuitNits.us. You can find these products at supercenters, pharmacies, grocery and natural food stores.

 

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Teething Tips

pic(NAPSI)—For many babies, teething can be a painful experience. Finding safe and effective ways to ease a baby’s discomfort can challenge new parents, but there are many natural solutions that can help.

Teething usually begins when a baby’s primary teeth come through the gums, somewhere between the ages of 3 and 12 months old. By age 3, most children have all 20 of their first teeth.

Lauren Feder, M.D., is a nationally recognized physician and author who specializes in primary care medicine, pediatrics and homeopathy. She says, “All babies experience teething differently. Some experience a lot of discomfort while others may show no symptoms. And while a baby might experience one episode of teething with pain, a subsequent tooth may cause little to no pain.”

The telltale signs of teething include irritability, drooling, chin rash, biting and gnawing, diarrhea, low-grade fever, and wakefulness at night about three to five days before a tooth breaks through the gum. Because a baby cannot communicate his or her needs, parents may want to try a variety of solutions to relieve the discomfort of these symptoms, starting with the most gentle and natural.

“Cold washcloths, teething rings and massage can help soothe swollen, irritated gums,” notes Dr. Feder. “Hard frozen foods and vegetables can present a choking hazard, however, so it’s best to provide safe objects to chew on.”

While many parents have used over-the-counter numbing benzocaine-based gels and liquids to ease teething pain, the FDA has advised that they can lead to a rare but serious condition called methemoglobinemia.

Symptoms of methemoglobinemia may be difficult for parents to interpret because they can be attributed to other illnesses. Concerned parents should ask their doctor before using benzocaine teething gels on a child, particularly under the age of 2. A consumer update from the FDA on this topic can be found at www.fda.gov.

“Natural medicines such as homeopathic teething tablets and gels can provide effective relief from mouth and gum pain,” says Dr. Feder. “They are formulated to temporarily relieve the symptoms of simple restlessness and wakeful irritability and to help reduce redness and inflammation of gums,” she adds.

Hyland’s all-natural Baby Teething Tablets melt instantly upon contact and have been trusted by parents for over 85 years to ease teething discomfort without numbing a baby’s gums.

(These statements are based upon traditional homeopathic practice. They have not been reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration.)

For more natural medicine suggestions and valuable offers, visit www.hylandsbaby.com. Hyland’s products are available nationally in natural food stores, groceries, supercenters and pharmacies such as Walgreens.

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Colic: Why It’s No Crying Matter

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(NAPSI)—While colic can be unbearable for the entire household, there are ways you can treat your baby’s discomfort. Usually presenting itself within the first month of life, colic is characterized by excessive and prolonged bouts of screaming and crying, often lasting until 4 to 6 months of age.

The condition affects as many as one in five infants and poses a unique dilemma for parents and doctors.There’s no universally recognized cause for the condition, so the challenge in treating colic lies in identifying the source of the problem.

It is widely accepted that colic is a digestive problem in which something is irritating the intestinal system but the exact cause of the intestinal problems can vary.

Two common causes are cow’s milk protein intolerance and a recently recognized condition called transient lactase deficiency (TLD), which is an intolerance to milk sugar.

A cow’s milk protein allergy can easily be diagnosed by removing all dairy from a baby’s diet, or from the mother’s diet if she is breast-feeding. If this does not put the colic symptoms at bay, a likely cause is TLD.

Transient lactase deficiency occurs in babies who are born with insufficient levels of the digestive enzyme lactase in their intestines. This enzyme is needed to digest the milk sugar, or lactose, in breast milk or formula. The undigested lactose sugars create gas, bloating and irritation in the intestines, leading to colicky symptoms.

The symptoms caused by TLD are analogous to those presented in older children and adults with lactose intolerance; their lack of lactase enzyme leads to gas, pain and bloating when they drink milk.

Fortunately, TLD is a temporary condition that resolves itself when the baby starts producing lactase in sufficient amounts.

Before that, TLD can be treated by adding lactase enzyme drops, such as Colief, to breast milk or formula at every feeding. This reduces the lactose load in milk, making it easier for babies to digest.

Lactase enzyme drops are completely natural, and can help facilitate continued breast-feeding or prevent the switch to an expensive, hypoallergenic formula. What’s more, with lactase enzymes, babies aren’t deprived of the natural and healthy milk sugar that contributes to brain development.

Because colic is such an intricate and mystifying condition, nationally recognized pediatrician Dr. Bob Sears has engaged in an educational campaign aiming to spread awareness of the various causes and available treatments.

Parents can get information and advice through Facebook (www.Facebook.com/ColiefInfantDrops), Twitter (www.Twitter.com/Colief) or by tweeting with the hashtag #TummyTuesday.

Additional information on colic and transient lactase deficiency is at www.RelieveColic.com. Newly available to the U.S., Colief can be found at select drugstores and retailers, including Walmart and Walgreens.

 

Note to Editors: Colief is proud to partner with Dr. Bob Sears as part of a national effort to educate parents about colic. Dr. Sears is spokesperson for Crosscare Ltd., the manufacturer of Colief. The opinions expressed are his own.

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Help For Children With Cerebral Palsy

pic(NAPSI)—According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), one in every 303 children in the United States suffers from cerebral palsy (CP). If someone you care about is among that population, there is new hope that could make walking easier.

The Problem

Children and adults with CP often have a form of partial lower leg paralysis or weakness known as “foot drop” that causes an unnatural gait and makes it difficult to walk.

A Solution

Fortunately, a new medical device the size of an iPod is helping to restore walking ability for thousands of Americans. Worn around the calf, just below the knee, the WalkAide uses electrical stimulation to combat foot drop for those with CP as well as other conditions that cause foot drop, such as traumatic brain injury, multiple sclerosis, stroke and incomplete spinal cord injury. A recent study conducted at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) shows that the WalkAide successfully improves mobility by significantly increasing ankle control during walking in children with foot drop due to CP.

How It Works

The device applies low-level electrical currents directly to the nerve that controls the movement of the ankle and foot, prompting a muscle contraction that lifts the foot at the appropriate time during the gait cycle. It uses sensor technology similar to that in video gaming systems to determine the appropriate timing for stimulation with every step.

Fit For Kids

A pediatric version of the device was recently designed and launched by Innovative Neurotronics after clinicians identified the potential for success within the pediatric population.

The kid-friendly version is made with a smaller cuff and smaller electrodes to allow for a secure fit on young legs, precise electrode placement, and lower pulse-width settings for gentle electrical stimulation options that can be adapted as children grow and mature into adulthood.

Now, physicians can prescribe the appropriate version to patients of all ages. In addition, free clinical evaluations can be had at more than 1,000 orthotic centers and rehabilitation facilities nationwide.

Learn More

For further facts, visit www.PediatricWalkAide.com or call (800) 551-5109.

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