What You Need to Know About Women's Health Screenings

Posted by Peter Crowell on Apr 3, 2015 12:03:00 PM

 

An Einstein Doctor Suggests a Smart Health Approach for Women

Two of the most important keys to good health are prevention and early detection.

We asked Dr. Arnold Cohen, former Chairman and Program Director of the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Einstein Healthcare Network, to share his advice regarding regular health screenings for women.

He spelled out his answer in eight points every woman should know. 

Read on to find out what he told us.

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Topics: Wellness

How To Shake Up Your Fitness Routine

Posted by Peter Crowell on Mar 30, 2015 2:31:05 PM

 

What motivates you to get moving and keep moving? If you can’t remember because you’ve been stuck in the same fitness rut for so long, it’s probably time to switch up your workout.

Some people rarely miss a day at the gym. Others can’t remember the last time they went. But most everyone needs to switch up their routine once in a while to avoid boredom or a plateau. Here are four small changes you can make now to keep going strong.

If You Usually Work Out Alone …

Sign Up for a Group or Join a Fitness Community

According to theAmerican College of Sports Medicinegroup exercise creates accountability through competition and social interaction, so you’ll not only schedule your workout time but also get more out of it. Many gyms offer a range of classes, from dance-inspired cardio to boot camp style, and many instructors demonstrate modifications to increase and decrease the difficulty level.

If You Are Intimidated by the Crowd …

Bring a Friend and Wear a Smile

Are you intimidated by the stern focus of gym buffs around you? If so, bring along a friend. A study in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience about the unconscious visual cues of motivation revealed how exposure to happy faces increases exercise endurance. A friendly face might just motivate you to do that extra set of push-ups.

If You Have Mastered the Machines …

Get Some Tips from a Pro

Has your strength-training regimen become too easy? If so, ask a personal trainer to show you some new equipment and moves, such as ways to increase resistance and activate underused muscle groups. As the American Journal of Sports Medicine reported, the risk of injuries from weight training is high, so do not attempt a new weight-bearing exercise without professional instruction.

If You Are Tired of the Treadmill …

Take It to the Streets

Did you know that exercising in the great outdoors is good for your self-esteem? According to a study published in Environmental Science & Technology, just five minutes a day of physical activity outdoors can improve your mental health and well-being. What’s more, exposure to sunshine and vitamin D will boost your bone health as well as reduce your risk of a number of health problems.

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Topics: Wellness

Easy Guidelines for a Healthier Life

Posted by Peter Crowell on Mar 23, 2015 12:05:00 PM

Set the Right Goals for a Healthier Life

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Topics: Health and Safety, Wellness

5 Steps to a 5K Race

Posted by Peter Crowell on Mar 20, 2015 11:22:00 AM

Training for a 5K road race for the first time? You can conquer five kilometers (3.1 miles) if you follow a few steps.

Pick a race. 5Ks are popular, both on their own and as part of community and charity events, so you shouldn’t have trouble finding one. You’ll find a list of races in your area at active.com by searching “5K.”

Another possibility: Contact your favorite charity or cause, or your local hospital, and ask them if they sponsor a 5K. This way, you can help yourself get in better shape while helping others.

Choose a race that’s two to three months away so you will have time to train.

Invest in the tools you need. Running is a simple and relatively inexpensive sport, but one thing is essential: a good pair of shoes. You may save money on inexpensive sneakers, but you’ll likely pay down the road (literally!) with injury and discomfort. A pedometer can take the guesswork out of training and motivate you by tracking your progress.

Check in with your healthcare professional. This is a must-do if you are shifting from a sedentary lifestyle to that of a 5K runner. Discuss your race goal and get the all-clear sign to pursue your ambitions.

Find a training program that works for you. If you’ve been inactive, start slowly. Alternate walking with short intervals of running, gradually increasing your jogging time as you build stamina and work toward 3.1 miles. And be sure to give yourself days off between runs to allow your muscles time to recover, according to livestrong.com.

The Internet is full of day-by-day training plans that range from six weeks to as many as 12 weeks (search “training for a 5K”), but don’t trust your health to an unknown site. Choose reliable sources such as Web MD or Runner’s World. Most important, show any plan you choose to your healthcare provider or a fitness professional for their opinion.

Walking works wonders too. Remember, road races are not just for runners anymore. Many exercise novices, as well as people with medical problems such as arthritis, may choose towalk 5Ks, and that’s just fine. The key is to move, at whatever speed suits you!

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Topics: Broad Street Run, Wellness

Change Your Life in 7 Minutes a Day

Posted by Peter Crowell on Mar 13, 2015 10:48:00 AM

Give Your Heart a Workout in 7 Minutes or Less

Do you have five minutes to spare? That may be all it takes to live a longer, heart-healthy life.

According to a recent study published in the Journal of American College of Cardiology, it may take as little as five minutes a day of strenuous exercise to improve your heart health and overall longevity.

Ready to get started? Grab a pair of running shoes and hit the road. Running, or even just fast walking, may be the easiest way to give your heart a quick workout.

The study looked at data from 55,000 adults over a 15-year period to determine if running has an impact on life expectancy. Here’s what researchers found:

Runners versus Non-Runners:

  • Compared with non-runners, runners had a 30 percent lower risk of death from all causes and a 45 percent lower risk of death from heart disease or stroke.
  • Runners lived, on average, three years longer than non-runners.

The Fast Track to Heart Health

“If you aren’t a runner now, remember that fast walking is a precursor to jogging and running, and offers heart benefits as well,” says Andrew P. Overman, PT, DPT, MS, COMT, CSCS.

Overman suggests that non-runners start with fast-paced walking, interspersed with periods/intervals of light jogging (for 30 seconds, for example). 

“This will still help to strengthen your heart as you progress and elevate your heart rate, which will lead to heart benefits overall.”

Intensity Can Pave the Way to Longevity

More may not be better when it comes to the healthy heart benefits of running or strenuous activity in general. Timothy Church, MD, PhD, one of the study’s co-authors, noted that there is nothing “magical about running per se” and instead said that it is likely that exercise intensity is the key to improving longevity.

Church’s bottom line advice: If you are healthy enough, do at least five minutes of high-intensity exercise each day. “The benefits in terms of mortality are remarkable,” he said.

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Topics: Wellness, Cardiology

8 Foods to Eat When You Want to Lose Weight

Posted by Peter Crowell on Mar 9, 2015 10:24:00 AM

Foods to Choose When You Want to Lose Weight

It’s all over the news: You probably won’t lose weight eating burritos from your favorite “fast casual” restaurant. But did you really think you would?

The truth is that it’s easier to fill your plate with fat-filled, high-calorie snacks and meals. Healthy foods, like fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins, often require a little more preparation.

You can start your weight-loss meal planning at the grocery store by adding these foods to your cart.

1. Fresh produce

When it comes to healthy eating, virtually any fruit or vegetable will help you make your way toward your goal. Fruits high in water and fiber are good choices. Watermelon, grapefruit and berries are low in calories and high in vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals—powerful antioxidants that can help boost your immune system and help prevent disease.

2. Quinoa

Quinoa is a nutrition superstar and a great addition to your menu. It’s high in iron and fiber, and it has twice as much protein as white rice. Quinoa is also low on the glycemic index—meaning it won’t make your blood sugar levels spike and crash. However, it still contains a similar amount of calories as grains. When cooked, brown rice, white rice and quinoa all contain about 200 to 240 calories per cup, so you still need to pay attention to portion size.

3. Sweet potatoes or yams

A smart starch choice is the sweet potato or yam. These orange, yellow and even purple root vegetables are higher in fiber and beta-carotene than white potatoes and processed grains.

4. Beans

Beans are another excellent option for people who are trying to slim down. High in fiber and protein, they will help keep your blood sugar levels stable and extend the feeling of fullness longer. From black beans to chickpeas, there are plenty of options on the shelf.

5. Salmon

When it comes to protein-rich foods, salmon is near the top of the list. The fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been found to boost both heart and brain health. Salmon is also relatively low in calories.

6. Eggs

For many years, eggs got a bad rap for containing high cholesterol. Recent findings have shown that moderate consumption—up to one a day—can be part of a healthy diet. Also, eggs are relatively low in calories and high in protein.

7. Yogurt

If you need a sweet treat throughout the day, stock up on low-fat Greek yogurt. It contains twice as much protein as regular yogurt and nearly the same amount of calories. Buy the plain kind and sweeten it with fresh fruit.

8. Oatmeal

Oatmeal is the perfect way to start your day! It is low in sugar and high in fiber, which will keep you full all morning long. One serving of plain oatmeal (1/2 cup dry) contains only 150 calories, 4 grams of fiber, 5 grams of protein, and zero sodium and sugar. Feel free to dress up your oatmeal with fresh fruit or unsalted nuts for extra taste and nutrition.

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Topics: Wellness, Nutrition, Bariatrics

Tips for Managing Wintertime Depression

Posted by Peter Crowell on Mar 3, 2015 12:34:00 PM

Kicking the Winter Blues

So many of us are sick and tired of the winter – the cold, the snow, the ice, the darkness, and may be feeling the winter blues or winter “blahs.” Well, hang in there, spring is almost here. 

To help get us through this final stretch of winter, Sachin Mehta, MD, a psychiatrist with Belmont Behavioral Health who specializes in treating people with depression and other mood disorders, offers some advice about kicking the winter blues.

What are the Winter Blues?

The clinical term for the winter blues is Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, which is a form of depression that occurs during the fall and winter months when exposure to natural sunlight is reduced and SAD goes away in the spring when there’s increased sunlight.

Symptoms of the winter blues are many of the symptoms of depression: sadness, anxiety, loss of interest in usual activities, withdrawal from social activities, difficulty concentrating, and the need for increased sleep.

To help kick the winter blues, Dr. Mehta offers these tips:

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Topics: Wellness

How to Quit Smoking for the Last Time.

Posted by Peter Crowell on Mar 2, 2015 11:36:00 AM

Are You Ready to Quit Smoking? Make This Time Your Last Time

Here are some ways people are learning how to quit smoking everyday. Reduce your risk for lung cancer and learn how to stop smoking.

Most smokers want to quit smoking. While some people can white-knuckle physical withdrawal symptoms and stop smoking “cold turkey,” others need additional support. This is where a doctor can really help. There are prescription medications now available to help manage the physical effects of quitting. Doctors can recommend support groups, alternative therapies such as acupuncture, and nicotine replacement products.

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Topics: Wellness

Simple Diet Changes that can Help Prevent Heart Attacks

Posted by Peter Crowell on Feb 23, 2015 10:43:00 AM

Changing Your Diet May Prevent a Heart Attack

Powerful results from long-term studies indicate that people who change their diets for the better after suffering a heart attack are much less likely to die of heart disease or suffer another cardiac event.

In fact, adopting a heart-healthy diet proved to have similar success in risk reduction as taking statin drugs.

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Topics: Wellness, Cardiology

Did You Know Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can Happen to Anyone?

Posted by Peter Crowell on Feb 20, 2015 11:17:00 AM


Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Can Affect All of Us

Many of us have seen American Sniper, the Oscar nominated film starring Bradley Cooper. The film highlights the gripping drama and danger faced by servicemen in Iraq and the consequences of exposure to those life and death experiences.

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Topics: Wellness

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About this blog

Perspectives highlights the expertise and services provided by the physicians, specialists, nurses and other healthcare providers at Einstein Healthcare Network. Through this blog, we share information about new treatments and technologies, top-tier clinical teams and the day-to-day interactions that reinforce our commitment to delivering quality care with compassion. Here, you will also find practical advice for championing your health and wellness.

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