Vampire Craze Inspires Teen Biting Trend

Parents and Twi-Hards, LISTEN up!

Fans of Twilight and The Vampire Diaries can’t get enough of the vampire craze, but they may be taking their love of the supernatural beings a little too far. A new trend shows that teens are now biting each other to show their love and affection.

A new report shows that marking someone can be considered a form of physical abuse.

Also, when the bites are hard enough to draw blood, the trend can be a dangerous one.  Medical officials say “That can be an entry for bacteria to get into the skin. You can set up for potentially some serious skin infections.”

Steak Not Linked To Heart Disease, But…

Bacon Is! From the MEMORIAL DAY COOKOUT NEWS :

There’s some good news and some bad news for meat lovers out there. A new study has found that red meat is NOT linked to heart disease, strokes or diabetes — unless it is salted or cured.

So, steaks are good for you… but bacon and hot dogs are bad.

Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health found that unprocessed red meats aren’t linked to any heart problems.

But, the same cannot be said for bacon, hot dogs and other processed meats. These tasty foods contribute to all the health problems experts have long been warning us that red meat causes.

I’m so excited. – Justin

Broccoli Is A Great Sunscreen!

The hot new ingredient in sunscreens may be –broccoli. Inflammation and redness are key measures of future skin cancer risk.

Researchers at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine are finding out that not only

is broccoli a potent cancer-fighter when you eat it, applying a smear of an

extract found in broccoli sprouts to skin reduced inflammation by nearly 40%.

The antioxidants in the compound apparently activate skin’s own cancer-fighting

ability by boosting production of protective enzymes and it works for days, even

after it’s washed off. Show share with your friends and let’em know you heard it from Justin in the morning!

SINUS ISSUES? COULD BE SECOND-HAND SMOKE

Cigarette smoke could be to blame for much of the chronic itchy, runny nose and sinus woes — also known as rhinosinusitis — that plague one in every six US adults. New research (Brock University in St. Catherines, Ontario) shows if you’ve had a history of chronic rhinosinusitis or if you have sensitive nasal passages and sinuses and you’re vulnerable, then you should avoid second-hand smoke.

… Researchers say exposure to second-hand smoke — especially on the job and at private social functions like parties and weddings — upped the likelihood of suffering from chronic rhinosinusitis. In fact, they calculated that passive smoking is behind 40 percent of all cases of the condition.

Catch Phrases You Should Quit Saying

Catch phrases you should quit saying according to Men’s Health:

  1. “I meant to…” — Translation: “I thought of you, and then immediately thought of something better.” It’s not always the thought that counts.
  2. “I’m sorry you feel that way.” — An apology doesn’t need to be long or repetitious. You just need to mean it, and to acknowledge that you were wrong not that someone thought you were wrong.
  3. “I’m not here to make friends.” — Reality TV contestants say that to each other all the time. Seriously. Search the phrase on YouTube. Know when that attitude helps in the real world? Never.
  4. “It’s a wi –win.” – Say that and other people hear, “I win and you lose, but you won’t realize that for another 2 weeks when I’m nowhere to be found, so in the end, I win twice.”
  5. “How much do I owe?” — Long division is for the classroom, not the restaurant. Pick up the check once in a while and you won’t feel guilty when your friends do it. It all evens out.
  6. “Here’s what you should do.” — Girls are right: You don’t have to fix every problem. Listening is its own form of help. So let her or your buddy vent, and offer direction only if they ask, “What should I do?”
  7. Anything you scream over live music. — We’re not sure why you’re at the show if you’re not listening, but rest assured everyone else paid $100 to hear “Jungleland,” not what you had for dinner. And when you scream into somebody’s ear, it hurts.
  8. “Cheers!” — It’s like a British car on U.S. roads: ill fitting and dangerous.
  9. “Oh, I know. That’s like when I…” — When a person’s telling a story, this is not an invitation to break in with your own anecdote. Your pal has the floor. When it’s your turn, you’ll appreciate his silence.
  10. “Can you help me move?” — It’s fun to move friends into dorm rooms, not into real homes. If you have a job, come on: Pony up for movers. Then you can invite your friends over for a housewarming party. You’ll be amazed how much beer they’re happy to carry in themselves.
  11. “I’m a good multitasker.” — No, you’re not. Nobody is. And as you peck at your BlackBerry under the dinner table, everyone is silently offended. But at least whoever you’re writing is enjoying a lousy e-mail.
  12. “When are you going to stop talking?” — Maybe you’re not saying it out loud, but we can all see it on your unengaged face. If a conversation bores you, make it better by contributing.
  13. “You’re wrong.” — Healthy disagreement makes you an interesting guy to talk to. Dismissing someone’s idea entirely makes you a radio yakker.
  14. “Call you back later, okay?” — Men have a hard enough time reaching out. When your friend says, “Hey, I need to talk,” he isn’t being casual. He’s downplaying. And whatever else you’re doing can wait.

WHY COFFEE’S OKAY

While we’re well aware of the cons to drinking coffee, we’ve learned that the positive benefits can sometimes outweigh the negative effects. So why have older studies given coffee such a bad rep? The reason is quite simple — studies that had previously linked coffee consumption to cancer were inadvertently studying coffee drinkers who were also smokers. A 2006 issue of Harvard Women’s Health Watch claims that moderate coffee consumption, defined as 3 to 4 cups per day, is actually beneficial to your health. Here are some reasons to stay hooked on the stuff.

1. Coffee is the #1 source of antioxidants in the American diet
While fruits and veggies are still the richest sources of antioxidants, it turns out that for Americans, coffee is the main basis of antioxidant consumption (according to the Institute of Coffee Studies at Vanderbilt University). Black tea and bananas came in second and third place, respectively. Surprisingly, both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee provide similar amounts of antioxidants.

2. Coffee increases your metabolism
Studies also show that coffee is very beneficial in terms of weight loss. It is a common misconception that coffee is an appetite suppressant, however, your morning cup can significantly speed up metabolism by about 10 percent. The National Research Council on Diet and Health found that metabolic rates will be highest during the first three hours following consumption. Just make sure to skip the added sugars, syrups, and whipped toppings found in many store-bought coffee drinks.

3. Coffee can improve short-term memory
According to studies published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, caffeine is a cognitive stimulant that actually boosts brain functioning. Furthermore, coffee reduces levels of beta amyloid, a protein in the brain that is responsible for Alzheimer’s disease.

4. Coffee lowers the rates of some cancers
According to WebMD, coffee drinkers are 50 percent less likely to get liver cancer. By drinking 2 cups per day, you’re also slashing your risk of getting colon cancer by 25 percent. Some studies have also found ties to lower rates of breast and skin cancers as well.

5. Coffee can reduce risk for Type 2 diabetes
WebMD also asserts that coffee contains chemicals that lower blood sugar, making heavy coffee drinkers half as likely to get diabetes as light to non-coffee drinkers. 1-3 cups per day can reduce the risk for diabetes by single digits, but people who drink 6 cups or more per day can slash their chances by up to 54 percent.

6. Coffee is actually good for your teeth
We all know that one of the biggest cons of drinking coffee is a stained smile, but  the beverage can also have a positive effect on teeth. According to a 2009 article published in the Wall Street Journal, people who drink coffee are less likely to have cavities. Roasted coffee beans have antibacterial effects against microorganisms like Streptococcus, which play a hand in causing tooth decay.

7. Coffee can help prevent/stop headaches
Have you ever wondered why caffeine is one of the main ingredients in migraine medication like Excedrin Migraine? WebMD explains that blood vessels increase in size during a migraine– caffeine works to decrease the size of blood vessels before they can affect nerves in the brain. So, drinking coffee in the early stages of a headache can help minimize the severity later on.

Live Broadcast, Jackpot Machine, and YOUR health?

The first Spring Health Fair from Mark Twain St. Joseph’s Hospital starts at 7:00am this Saturday morning at Ironstone Vineyards. Til Noon you can have a free health screening, get a blood analysis, look into senior services, get bone density screenings, nutrition information, fitness information, food, music, and FUN with our Jackpot machine, dolling out prizes from 8 to 10 with a live broadcast. Hope you take advantage of this wonderful opportunity and thanks to Mark Twain St. Joseph’s Hospital for their effort in providing this valuable service to the motherlode.

Justin Flores

HOME CURES THAT ACTUALLY WORK

Prevention magazine says these home remedies actually work. Comment on this blog and let me know if you’ve ever used any of these remedies.

Apples for whiter teeth
Apples and other crunchy fruits and vegetables act as natural “scrubbers” on the teeth, a natural cleansing action that helps fight stains on enamel.

Listerine for blisters
This mouthwash brand is also a powerful antiseptic, and applied with a cotton ball to blisters 3 times a day, can dry out blisters quickly.

Lemons for motion sickness
Lemons (and olives, too) contain tannins, which dry out saliva — a byproduct of nausea, the “sick” in motion sickness.

Papaya for smoother skin
Papaya contains an enzyme — papain — that acts as a natural yet gentle exfoliator. Try this easy mask: mix 2 tablespoons of papaya (peeled, seeded and washed) in a food processor with 1 tablespoon of dry oatmeal, pat mixture onto clean skin and leave it on for 10 minutes before removing with a wet washcloth.

Sugar for hiccups
Forget drinking water backward or holding your breath; a spoonful of sugar will stop the hiccups. It seems like it works because it’s such a shock to the system to eat straight sugar (yuck!), but professionals say it actually modifies the nerve muscles that contract the diaphragm spasmodically — i.e. a hiccup.

Vodka for stinky feet
A vodka-soaked washcloth will do the trick if you’ve got some foot odor going on. It contains alcohol and works as an antiseptic and drying agent on the odor-causing bacteria that make your feet reek; of course, rubbing alcohol works equally well.

Olive oil for eczema
Sooth a flareup by rubbing 1 teaspoon per square inch of skin in the irritated area; this creates a seal that prevents skin from drying out. Olive oil is packed with antioxidants that can reduce inflammation associated with eczema, and lacks chemical irritants found in many store-bought cures, too.

Ice cream for pizza mouth
Ever burn the roof of your mouth on a slice of hot pizza? A few bites of ice cream will help soothe the burn in that sensitive area, where the skin is only a few millimeters thick.

Pencils for stress headaches
Your mom told you to keep it out of your mouth, but if you’ve got a stress headache, holding a pencil between your teeth may be exactly what you need (but you still shouldn’t chew!). People under stress tend to clench their teeth, which can lead to head pain, and a pencil between your teeth causes you to relax those tense muscles, which in turn prevents the pain.

Duct tape for warts
This is a common folk cure that really does work. — better than freezing them off, according to one study, because chemicals in the tape suffocate and kill the wart. To use this cure, clean the warty area, then cut a piece of tape that’s slightly bigger than the wart. Put the tape over the wart and rub it so it sticks. Take the tape off every three days and file down the dead skin with a pumice stone or nail file; repeat until the wart is gone.

CHRISTMAS PERILS

Christmas tree fire – How often does that happen?

Christmas trees account for about 200 fires annually, resulting in six deaths, 25 injuries and more than $6 million in property damage, according to the U.S. Fire Administration.

Prevention? Make a fresh cut to remove at least half an inch of wood from the base of the trunk, and place the tree in water. Keep it away from heat sources, do not leave lights on unattended, and discard the tree promptly after the holiday when it has become dry and easier to ignite.

Drunken driving – How often does that happen?

According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 38 percent of all traffic fatalities during the 2007 Christmas period and 41 percent during the 2007-08 New Year’s Day period involved a drunken driver (compared with 32 percent during the rest of the year). This year could be especially risky because Christmas and New Year’s Day fall on Fridays, and the incidence of drunken-driving fatalities typically rises on weekends.

Prevention? If you’re going to drink, don’t drive. Plan ahead to have a designated driver, call a cab or ride the Metro. If you do over-imbibe, sleep it off on your host’s sofa. And even if someone sober is driving, wear a seat belt.

Weight gain – How often does that happen?

The claim that most Americans gain five pounds from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day is a myth; most gain only one pound, according to an oft-cited 2000 study in the New England Journal of Medicine. But don’t reach for the figgy pudding yet: The study also found that most people never lose that pound during the spring and summer.
Prevention

Tips from Michelle May, physician and author of “Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat”: Listen and adhere to your body’s satiety cues. Sit down to eat. Deal with food pushers with a polite but firm “No, thank you.” Be a food snob; if something doesn’t taste as good as you expected, stop eating it and choose something else.

Holiday plant poisoning – How often does that happen?

In 2008, American poison control centers received 426 calls regarding exposure to American and English holly, 132 calls about mistletoe and 1,174 for poinsettias. (“Exposure” usually means eating the plant, but the centers receive all kinds of zany calls, including people who rub the leaves on their skin and develop a rash.) None of these cases resulted in death, but effects of ingestion can include vomiting, nausea and diarrhea. The National Capital Poison Center lists holly and mistletoe as poisonous but poinsettia as nonpoisonous, though it “may cause irritation.”
Prevention

Keep these plants out of reach of children and pets. Call the National Poison Control Center, 800-222-1222, if you suspect ingestion.

Package-opening injury – How often does that happen?

Hard plastic “clamshell” casings, plastic bindings and wire ties send many revelers reaching for box cutters or knives on Christmas morning. About 6,000 Americans end up in the emergency room each year because of packaging-related injuries (so that includes birthday presents as well as Christmas gifts), according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Prevention

Last year, Amazon.com started its “frustration-free packaging” program, which promises “no wire ties, no clamshells, no wrap rage.” But if you find yourself confronted with an apparently impenetrable wrapper, take a deep breath (despite the excitement or anger). Then remember these tips from the Pennsylvania Medical Society: Avoid opening difficult packages in a crowded area, do not use your legs to keep the product stable and use blunt-tipped scissors.

Sledding accident – How often does that happen?

According to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 22,780 people were injured while riding sleds, toboggans, snow disks or snow tubes from 2004 to 2005.
Prevention

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends that children younger than 12 wear helmets. Scout the sledding hill to make sure that it’s free of obstacles, and don’t pick a slope that ends in a street, parking lot, pond or other hazard. Never go down a hill headfirst; sit upright, face forward and use a sled that you can steer.

Eggnog salmonella – How often does that happen?

There are no specific eggnog-related data, but the CDC estimates that one in 50 consumers could be exposed to a contaminated egg each year. If that egg is thoroughly cooked, the salmonella bacteria organisms will be destroyed and will not make the person sick.
Prevention

No, a dash of rum does not kill the bacteria in eggnog. If that’s what you’re serving, make it safely from a cooked egg-milk mixture, heating gently until it reaches 160 degrees, says the U.S. Department of Agriculture. (Or just buy pasteurized eggnog from the grocery store.) While we’re on the subject: If you’re baking cookies, don’t lick the spoon if there are eggs in your batter. If you don’t trust yourself, modify the recipe by using an egg substitute.

Consider this..Holiday Eating No-No’s

Consider this fact presented by Women’s Health magazine: The average American eats 600 additional calories per day between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Translation: That’s an extra six pounds. Yikes! But if you know which foods are the worst culprits for your waistline, you can battle back more effectively:

  1. Worst Classic Holiday Drink: Eggnog — At 350 calories and 19 grams of fat, eggnog, even without the booze, is on the naughty list because it consists of milk, cream and eggs. If you want a festive seasonal drink, choose homemade hot chocolate instead. Just limit how much whipped cream you squirt on top.
  2. Worst Holiday Appetizer: Crab Cakes — When crab is blended with mayonnaise and then rolled in bread crumbs and cooked in a vat of bubbling fat, you end up with an appetizer that weighs in at 400 calories and 19 grams of fat. Each. That’s more calories than three dozen shrimp.
  3. Worst Holiday Party Cocktail: Gin and Tonic — It may taste light, but a gin and tonic has 210 calories and 22 grams of sugar, thanks to the tonic water. Choose Champagne instead for one-fourth the amount of sugar.
  4. Worst Holiday Party Snack: Spinach and Artichoke Dip — In addition to the spinach and artichokes, this dip has mayonnaise, sour cream and cream cheese, which add up to a whopping 285 calories and 17 grams of fat per serving. And that’s without the crackers or chips! If you simply must have some, limit yourself to dip on one cracker.
  5. Worst Holiday Entree: Prime Rib — This coveted holiday cut of beef comes from one of the fattiest parts of the cow, which means you’re ingesting 750 calories and 45 grams of fat with just one serving. Beef tenderloin is a tasty alternative at a fraction of the calories and fat.
  6. Worst Holiday Dessert: Pecan Pie a la Mode — There is no pie that has more calories, fat and sugar than pecan. Even though some of the 810 calories and 65 grams of fat come from the healthy nuts, most come from the corn syrup and sugar filling. A better alternative after a filling heavy meal is angel food cake. Made from egg whites, it’s virtually fat-free.