Four Secrets to Living Longer

Oct. 4, 2017 at 11:38am

You can not depend on good genes to carry you past the century mark. Research into older people has revealed that certain lifestyle habits are connected to a long life. Everyone knows that eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, not smoking and maintaining a healthy weight works for longevity.
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Three Strings

Sep. 26, 2017 at 12:14pm

There is a story told about Itzhak Perlman, the famous violinist, who was playing in New York. Stricken with polio as a child, he always crossed the stage on crutches, moving painfully and laboriously. On this particular night, he reached the chair, sat down, slowly put his crutches on the floor, and undid the clasps on his legs. Then he bent to pick up the violin, put it under his chin, nodded to the conductor, and began to play.


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Mickey Mantle

Sep. 7, 2017 at 12:32pm

"If I knew I would live this long, I would have taken better care of myself."

--Mickey Mantle

As a great baseball player as Mickey Mantle was, he could not reach his full potential because of injuries. He did not train in the off-season; he did not cut down on late-night parties during the regular season. All the men in his family had died young, and knowing that, he was somewhat fatalistic about his own health.

But genetic history is not predestination. I have seen people offset bad genes with healthy lifestyles. And I have seen people offset good genes with poor lifestyle choices. You can not do much about your genetic makeup, but you can do a lot about the way you live. Just think what Mickey could have accomplished if he had understood that.

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Visualize for Success

Jul. 25, 2017 at 4:03pm

I grew up a die-hard New York Yankees fan. I followed the team religiously, knew players and managers from their earliest history, celebrated World Series victories, hated the Red Sox, and lived for those trips with my father and brother to Yankee Stadium. Like most fans of that era, I was crazy for Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, Whitey Ford, and Bobby Richardson—the guys who played exceptionally well but also looked the part of Yankee “supermen” in the tradition of Lou Gehrig, Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio. But I always had a special place in my heart for Yogi Berra.


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Avoid Social Isolation

Jul. 19, 2017 at 9:45am

Stress may be the single greatest contributor to illness in the industrialized world. Indeed, it is estimated that 75% of all diseases and illnesses are stress related. Of particular importance is the impact of stress on cardiovascular health and overweight/obesity. On the surface level, stress produces direct, deleterious effects: it injures artery walls, raises blood pressure, elevates cholesterol, causes coronary inflammation, and causes coronary artery spasms that can lead to sudden cardiac death. But stress also works on an indirect, insidious level to produce disastrous health consequences. People under chronic stress often make poor lifestyle choices. In trying to cope, they smoke, neglect exercise, eat too much and too often, make poor food choices and abuse alcohol and drugs.


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Do Not Be a Fool for Fraud

Jun. 21, 2017 at 1:41pm

Quick-fix weight-loss gadgets and gimmicks have skyrocketed. Sales of diet pills and supplements have risen to more than $5 billion a year. Do not be mislead. Many of these products are not only ineffective but potentially dangerous.


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Thoughts on Bypass Surgery

Jun. 1, 2017 at 1:49pm

Coronary bypass surgery probably saved my life, but people considering this procedure should be aware of four things. To start with, it takes away the pain (angina), but does not remove the underlying cause - coronary heart disease.
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Can Optimism Make A Difference in Your Life?

May. 25, 2017 at 11:03am

An article from the Verdant Health Commission:

If you’re a person who always has a rosy outlook and sees the glass as half-full rather than half-empty, your positive attitude may have even more benefits than you think.

A growing number of scientific studies indicate that optimistic people tend to live longer and have better physical and mental health than pessimistic people.


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Men Drink, Women Think

Apr. 28, 2017 at 10:53am

Chronic stress is part and parcel of modern life in the U.S. It is often the underlying reason for much of the depression in the country. For many years scientists assumed that the behavioral response to depression were similar for both sexes. New studies, however, show that this is not the case.
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Get Your Calories Early in the Day

Apr. 21, 2017 at 11:03am

Many people skip breakfast and lunch altogether. And those who do eat these meals often have a Danish for breakfast and fast food for lunch. When these people get home in the evening and relax, they tend to eat much more at dinner than they need. The American Dietary Association estimates that over half of overweight women eat 70% of their daily calories after 7:00 P.M.


A better way is to take in the majority of calories at breakfast and lunch so that they can be burned in the course of the day. If you are going on a road trip, do you fill up at your destination or before you leave?

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Diabetes Risk

Apr. 12, 2017 at 1:55pm

Diabetes: A Cardiac Risk

About 24 million Americans, nearly 8% of the population, have diabetes, a condition that disrupts the way the body uses glucose. For the body to absorb glucose, the hormone insulin, which is produced in the pancreas, is necessary. But in people with diabetes the pancreas does not produce insulin (or produces too little of it) or the body does not properly use the insulin that is produced. As a consequence, glucose builds up in the blood and eventually begins to appear in the urine. Over time, high glucose levels can cause devastating results such as stroke, high blood pressure, blindness, kidney disease, nere damage and amputation. Diabetes is the fourth leading cause of death (often prematurely) in the U.S. And heart disease is the leading cause of diabetes-related death. Studies suggest that diabetes raises the risk of heart disease in men by 69% and in women by a whopping 174%.

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Heart Health Tip

Mar. 23, 2017 at 12:57pm

Get Enough Sleep

According to the National Sleep Foundation, Americans are sleep-deprived workaholics. Only about a third of us are sleeping the recommended seven to eight hours a night, 44% report trouble falling asleep, 48% say they wake up in the night too often and 50% say they wake up unrefreshed. In fact, 40% say they have trouble staying awake on the job.
According to a review of 15 studies published in the European Heart Journal, consistently sleeping less than six hours a night nearly doubles your risk of heart attack and stroke.

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Heart Health Tip

Mar. 17, 2017 at 9:57am

Get a Friend with Four Legs

This is not as offbeat as it may sound. Scientific evidence suggests that those who keep pets are likely to benefit from improvements in physical and emotional well-being. Indeed, pets seem to be particularly therapeutic for people with or at risk of heart disease. Several years ago, researchers studied patients in a coronary-care unit at a major hospital. All had experienced a heart attack or had severe chest pain. In a one-year follow up, 28% of those who did not own pets had died, as compared with only 6% of pet owners.
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Waist Size

Mar. 13, 2017 at 10:20am

Waist Size can be a Health Hazard

You were a pretty good jock in high school, and in your 20s you tried everything from racquetball to running. But in middle age, even your softball glove is gathering dust. For recreation, you surf — the Web, not the waves.

Male attitudes toward health also make men less likely than women to see a doctor.

The fact is, the fat around your abdomen is no laughing matter. A man’s waist circumference, particularly if 40 inches or greater, often warns of later problems ranging from heart disease to cancer, diabetes, arthritis, back pain, and sleep apnea.


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Nutritional Balance

Feb. 17, 2017 at 11:23am

There has never been a time where there has been more information available on healthy eating – from bestselling diet books, to infomercials for cleanses, and secret tips in glossy magazines. Unfortunately, many are not based on credible nutritional science. Watching medical experts tout the addition or subtraction of one nutrient as deliverance—only to change the channel and hear someone equally-thoroughly-credentialed touting the opposite—it can be tempting to write off nutrition advice altogether. This month we hear something is good, and next we almost expect to hear it’s bad. Why not assume the latest research will all eventually be nullified, and just close our eyes and eat whatever tastes best?


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How to Survive a Heart Attack When Alone

Jan. 24, 2017 at 11:43am


It's 7:00 PM and you're going home after a hard day on the job. You are tired, upset and frustrated. Suddenly you start to experience severe pain in your chest (often described as "an elephant sitting on my chest") that works it's way down your arm and up into your jaw.
You are still some miles from a hospital and you're not sure you'll be able to make it that far. You know CPR but you can't perform it on yourself. How do you survive a heart attack when alone?
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The Key to Sticking with Your Exercise Resolution

Jan. 11, 2017 at 10:00am

The Key to Sticking with Your Exercise Resolution: Get a Partner

January is a perfect month to commit to a program of regular exercise. And that is exactly what thousands of people do – join a YMCA or health club, buy a piece of home exercise equipment or start a walking program. Exercise becomes part of their “new year, new you” resolution.

Most people are familiar with the benefits of regular exercise. Yet, according to Dr. Len Kravitz, Director of Exercise Science at the University of New Mexico, approximately 50% those who begin exercise programs drop out within the first six months. Many people who start in January with good exercise intentions find that by April they stop going to the health club, drape clothes over their home exercise equipment, and never find time for a walk. The challenge then is not only to start an exercise program but to sustain it. It must become a lifetime habit in order to support good health.


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Going Backward

Jan. 4, 2017 at 12:10pm

Heart Disease Death Rate Rises

I thought we were making great progress with cardiovascular disease, the biggest killer in the U.S. for more than a century. Indeed, death rates from heart disease in the U.S. have declined nearly 70% since 1969, brought about by antismoking and other public-health campaigns, medications to control blood pressure and cholesterol, and new techniques for saving peoples' lives from heart attacks.
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Women & Heart Disease

Dec. 30, 2016 at 12:27pm

Lessons from Carrie Fisher

The recent tragic deaths of Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds has surfaced two issues: 1) the prevalence of heart disease in American women, and 2) the impact of stress in triggering a cardiovascular event. This blog is about women and heart disease. A future blog will look at “dying from a broken heart,” a phrase being used to describe Debbie Reynolds death.


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Season's Best Wishes

Dec. 23, 2016 at 12:16pm


Merry Christmas and best wishes for a Happy, Healthy New Year.

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Question (Nov 2, 2016 at 8:36pm)

Nov. 2, 2016 at 8:36pm

Joe, I had cabgx3 a year and a half ago. I increased activity/exercise ,changed my diet , (reduced fat, increased whole grains and fruits and vegetables) and lost 30 lbs. . My sweet tooth is a constant battle though. However, in trying to educate myself on dietary nutrition after cabg my head is spinning. Seemingly good sources preach contradictory info, low fat, high fiber is the key says one. Others carbs and sugar are the devil and need to be avoided. Still others spout the evils of heating the good fats like olive, canola and vegetable oils as well as roasted nuts? What am I to believe and follow so I can prolong my life. So confused, please help!

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