Living Well March 2012


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LivingWELL is recognized as the single most credible source of fitness, health and nutrition
information for African American consumers. Published monthly, LivingWELL:
• Tackles tough issues
• Delivers breaking news on advances in healthcare
• Features our exclusive GOguide listing of non-sedentary, family-friendly activities
• Contains our BLOG LOG, a reflection on what readers are talking about
• Offers leading edge, culturally-relevant advice from respected experts regarding obesity,
Type 2 diabetes and other prevalent health issue

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Living Well March 2012

  1. 1. WELLLIVINGBreakBoredomTips tokeep yourworkout Baby TalkworkingNutrition DriveWhen it comes toTeen Pregnancy andSex, CDC Confirms: Why ourTeenagers kids are soare Morons “sexed” up
  2. 2. LivingWELL • • March 20122 LivingWELL August 2011
  3. 3. Nutrition Drive McDonald’s new Happy Meal campaign makes nutrition fun for kids By Jackie Berg menu. McDonald’s USA announcement that it will intro- O duce a new, national Happy Meal campaign this month ur “small fries” may be in big trouble if child- to help make nutrition fun for kids is very good news. hood obesity trends continue unchecked, warns the Center for Disease Control (CDC), “For the first time, 100 percent of our national which reported recently that one in four African- marketing efforts to kids will include nutrition or active American girls and almost one in five African- lifestyle messages – a significant move in our ongoing American boys are overweight. commitment to children’s well being,” said Neil Golden, McDonald’s USA chief marketing officer. “We are proud Thus, if you are among the eighty- of this new approach and believe it will help make nutri- four percent of parents tion fun for kids while helping families feel even better who report taking about the food choices they make their child to a fast when visiting McDonald’s.” food restaurant at least once weekly, it’s food The company has launched a for thought. creative ad campaign featuring a compelling character named Ferris, It’s time--perhaps who is a happy-go-lucky kid who long overdue---to lives with his friends on a “Fun, Funky make some changes Farm” where eating fresh foods is because our kids’ fun. His goat---an indiscriminate eater habits start early. Consid- that consumes everything in sight er: While most preschool kids until he learns to eat right---helps cannot read, many can identify deliver the message. fast food brands. The objective of the campaign McDonald’s is the most If your child’s favorite vegeta- is to show children that food that’s recognized brand, with nearly 93 ble is French fries rather than healthy and good for you can be tasty percent of children correctly identify- carrots, it’s time to get out of and isn’t bad at all. ing the restaurant chain by its golden the drive-through lane. arches. Editor’s Note: Beginning now through April 18, McDonald’s Happy Meal Chefs contest is seek- For many kids, fast food is fun food, and once the ing inspiring stories from parent-and-child teams who fast-food habit is established, it’s hard to break. enjoy cooking with wholesome ingredients. Ten kids will “We need to change our communities into places win a trip to the London 2012 Olympic Games as part of where healthy eating and active living are the easiest McDonald’s Global Champions path,” said Dr. William Dietz, director of CDC’s division of Play program where they will of nutrition, physical activity and obesity. join kids from around the world to promote the importance of With forty percent of parents reporting that their a healthy, balanced diet. Two child asks to go to McDonald’s at least once a week grand prize winners will become (15% of preschoolers ask to go every day), honorary “Happy Meal Chefs.” parents need to take a stand and change Participants must answer a brief unhealthy eating habits. questionnaire and submit a short video online that cre- It’s good to hear that McDonald’s atively showcases their family mealtime. plans to help in creating a healthier WELL Jackie Berg Editor ContributorsLIVING Publisher Andrew Losen Maya Brooks Patricia Hubbell 313.963.6694 Direct Line Aretha Watkins Nick Chiles Sterling Wise 313.962.4467 FAX Design Director March 2012 James F. Barnhill LivingWELL • March 2012 LivingWELL • August 2011 3
  4. 4. Helping Karen P. Ridgeway, Superintendent of Academ- ics, Detroit Public Schools; Nancy Schlichting, CEO, Henry Ford Health System; Sue Snyder, First Lady, State of Michigan; Peggy Nielsen, manager, Sand- Castles Thomas Bello, kids cope managing partner, New York Life, Detroit. – Photo Courtesy of Henry Ford Health System SandCastles program brings grief support to Detroit school children By Jackie Berg T oo many of Detroit’s children have no resources to deal with the aftermath of death. They usually find themselves alone, unable to handle the grieving process and suffer serious con- sequences that can last a lifetime. Whether a child loses a loved one as a result of illness, accident or natural causes, it has an immediate and lasting impact in their lives. Violent deaths create even more challenges for children ill- equipped to cope with such tragedies. While Detroit’s police, politicians and clergy are ramping up collaborative efforts with community groups to halt street violence, another group of leaders has joined together to help grief stricken students cope with death. SandCastles, a division of Henry Ford Hospice, is bringing its grief support program to Detroit schools thanks to a $100,000 grant from the New York Life Foundation announced by Michigan First Lady and SandCastles and Kids Grief supporter, Sue Snyder, and Henry Ford Health System CEO Nancy Schlichting. The program, already available in four Detroit Public Schools, Tamia Culberson and her grandmother Terri Culberson, of Southfield, meet provides a supportive environment for children ages three to 18, and Michigan’s First Lady Sue Snyder their families who have lost loved ones. The first schools to have the program in Detroit are Mumford and “The SandCastles program Southwestern High Schools, Stewart Elementary-Middle School and has been a godsend to me and Thirkell Elementary School. The SandCastles partners plan to offer my granddaughter, Tamia,” said services at additional Detroit schools in the fall. Terri Culberson, a Southfield The program provides grieving children and families the opportu- resident who lost her daughter nity to come together for nurturing and strength as they learn to cope as a result of a congenital brain with the loss of loved ones. Families are encouraged to take part in the condition. program for as long as they feel the need, according to a SandCastles “At first, I didn’t want to manger Peggy Nielsen. SandCastle Participants talk about my mom dying with Grief doesn’t have a timetable, but thanks to SandCastles, Detroit anyone,” explained 10-year-old Tamia. “But eventually, they helped area children will have a program to deal with it. me to understand that it was okay to talk about my feelings and even Editor’s Note: There is no charge for SandCastles’s services which are about my anger. I was able to make new friends that understand the funded completely by donations. Those who wish for more information way that I feel, because they feel that way, too.” may call 313.874.6881 or visit LivingWELL • • March 20124 LivingWELL August 2011
  5. 5. have been documented in albinosGroundbreaking Keloid Study and the highest seen in dark skinned individuals, especially in the African American population. Treatment for keloids includesHenry Ford Hospital cortisone injections, pressure dress- ings, silicone gels, surgery, cryosur- gery (freezing), laser treatment, orstudy shows African radiation therapy. A combination of treatments may be used, dependingAmericans are 7 times on the individual. In some cases, ke- loids return after treatment.more likely to have keloid Within published literature, there is a wide range of reported incidencesscarring of the head, neck for keloid development. The Henry Ford study is the first to investigate keloid development fol-LivingWELL special report lowing head and neck surgery.A frican Americans are seven times more likely than Cau- Among the nearly 6,700 patients casians to develop an excessive growth of thick, irregu- in the Henry Ford study, 20 were larly shaped and raised scarring on their skin – known as found to have a keloid within thea keloid – following head and neck surgery, according to a new head and neck area following from Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit. Of those, the keloids rate for African Americans was 0.8 percent, while the This finding, however, is much lower than that previously rate for Caucasians was 0.1 percent.reported in medical literature, where rates of keloid develop-ment have been shown to be up to 16 percent in African Ameri- After adjusting for age and gender,cans. the study showed that the odds of get- ting a keloid for African Americans Unlike regular scars, keloids do not subside over time and were 7.1 times that of Caucasians.often extend outside the wound site. Keloids also may be pain-ful to the touch and itchy. Editor’s NOTE: Dr. Jones’ “Many African American patients are afraid to have head and neck surgery or any facial cosmetic procedures for fear of developing keloids at study aboutthe incision sites,” says Lamont R. Jones, Vice Chair, Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at Henry Ford. keloid forma- “We hope our study helps to eliminate that fear by showing that keloid development on the head and neck following surgery is actually much tion followingsmaller than other reports.” head and neck Much of the uncertainty surrounding keloids is rooted in there being no known cause for their development. surgery was re- cently presented But Dr. Jones and his research team at Henry Ford hope to eliminate that unknown. at the Triological Dr. Jones They are embarking on another keloid study to find a new technique to identify the genes that may be responsible for keloid development. By Society’s Com-identifying the genetic cause, it may be possible to develop better treatments for keloids in the near future. bined Sections Meeting, where it “The cause of keloid formation is unknown, but it is believed to have a genetic component given the correlation with family history, prevalence won a first place ribbon for facialin twins, and its predisposition in darker skin,” notes Dr. Jones, a facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon. plastic and reconstructive sur- Keloids most often occur on the chest, shoulders, earlobes (following ear piercing), upper arms and cheeks. The lowest rates of keloid formation gery. The study was funded by Henry Ford Hospital. LivingWELL • March 2012 5 LivingWELL • August 2011
  6. 6. Doctors call for a war on sugar Sweet Talk Healthy Living News S ugar needs to be controlled like alcohol and tobacco say University of California (UC) health experts. They maintain that sugar is causing a global obesity problem contributing to 35 million deaths annually from diseases like diabetes, heart disease and cancer. The health experts, doctors in endocrinology, sociology and public health, recently made their case for a war on sugar in the prestigious journal Nature. The experts believe that sugar’s potential for abuse, and its toxicity and pervasiveness in the Western diet, make it the cause of a worldwide health crisis. At the levels consumed by most Americans, sugar changes metabolism, raises blood pressure, critically alters hormones and causes signifi- cant damage to the liver – the least under- stood of sugar’s damages. The effects of sugar also mirror prolonged alcohol use. According to the U.N., diabetes and obe- sity now pose a greater health problem worldwide than infectious diseases. In the U.S., 75 percent of health care dollars are spent treating sugar related conditions. Worldwide consumption of sugar has tripled during the past 50 years making it a key contributor of the obesity epidemic. According to the UC doctors, obesity is just a marker for the Study: Sugary Cereals Popular in Ethnic Minority Households damage caused by too much sugar. This helps explain why 40 percent of people with metabolic syndrome — the metabolic changes leading Healthy Living News to diabetes, heart disease and cancer — are not clinically obese. A recent study shows that Black and Hispanic families are most likely to buy sugary cereals that The problem requires community-wide solutions, similar to what are advertised directly to children. The study, has occurred with alcohol and tobacco, one of the doctors said. which appears in the journal Public Health Nutri- “We’re not talking prohibition,” emphasized Laura Schmidt, PhD, tion, shows that Ethnic Minority households pur- chase cereals advertised directly to children at a MSW, MPH, of the University of California, San Francisco. “We’re 13 times higher rate. talking about gentle ways to make sugar consumption slightly less convenient, thereby moving people away from the concentrated dose. The findings may also explain why cereal com- panies have opposed stronger nutrition standards. What we want is to actually increase people’s choices by making foods Advertising to children appears to be extraordi- that aren’t loaded with sugar comparatively easier and cheaper to get.” narily effective at increasing sales the researchers noted. They suggest that improving the nutritional quality of cereals targeted to children could lead to healthier eating. LivingWELL • • March 20126 LivingWELL August 2011
  7. 7. That means the end of the king-size bar, since there are 540 calories in a king-size Snickers bar. And a slightly lower-calorie chocolate, since a regular Snickers current- ly contains 280 calories. The announcement adds to a spate of recent changes e- in the food industry in response to calls from consum- ers and government agencies to improve the nutrition- By al value of what we eat. School cafeterias, restaurants, Walmart, Pepsi Co. and others have banned trans fats, cut sugar and salt levels or boosted the selection of or- ganic foods in response to public pressure, consumer ye demand or government mandate. b Mars says the move reflected its “broad-based com- mitment to health and nutrition” and was part of its on- going efforts to improve the nutritional value of its prod- ucts and promote responsible snacking. It also said it ar would stop buying advertisements in media if more than a quarter of the audience figures to be under age 12. ig b Given Mars’ size and market share — Dove, Milky Way and 3 Musketeers are also among its chocolate b brands — it’s not hard to imagine other candy bar makers following suit. In other words, the writing is on the wall for king size chocolate bars. There’s little doubt that part of America’s obesity crisis is rooted in the supersized quan- tity of foods that we eat. On the other hand, it’s easy to see moves like this as more of the same scattered, piecemeal ap- tafson One of FBy S. Gus nd king-size: l- proach to nutrition. (Anyone remember the oat un-size a oon hit the nove bran craze of the ‘80s?) l s he these wil ars Inc., t What do you think about shrinking candy ty dustb in after M Mars bars bars? Good move? Makes no difference? Will rs, Twix, of Snicke unced it would you miss king size chocolate? maker ’s, anno con- Editor’s Note: Sven Gustafson is a regu- and MM chocolate products he lar contributor to LivingWELL Magazine and g yt stop sellin than 250 calories b works in communications and social media for ore Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Follow him taining m on Twitter at 3. end of 201 BackTalk very few adults who would touch one of these gargantuan sugary treats, but I have seen dozens of parents buy them for their children. The kids -- a generation plagued by the highest-ever rates -With all the fixation on our civilization’s expand- of childhood obesity and type 2 diabetes -- wolf down the bars readily and still beg for more. ing waistlines, it’s not that there are bad foods, There is no question, in my mind, that king-size candy bars and other comically oversized junk just big foods. That means you won’t be seeing food portions are contributing to the demise of today’s children. -By Juniper Russo, | Yahoo! lower-calorie chocolate or caramel — just less Contributor Network of it. -Allison Aubrey, NPR -Questions that come to mind: Should a candy company really be concerning itself with health -Wasn’t King Tut buried with king size candy and nutrition? Shouldn’t it leave that to the tofu makers? And, doesn’t this mean that a person bars? I think I read that in an edition of Na- will just buy more candy bars and thus spend more than he would have on a king-size candy tional Geographic. Of course, I could always bar? -Samantha Bonar, LA Weekly be mistaken. If he wasn’t, it was an oversight on somebody’s part -- most likely the tomb- stocking staff. Everybody needs a stash of king size candy bars to get through the day, the after- Continue the conversation at: life, or the zombie apocalypse. –As seen on candy- --King-size candy bars are a symbol of childish overindulgence to many, including myself. I know LivingWELL • March 2012 7 LivingWELL • August 2011
  8. 8. Baby Talk Why our kids are “ so sexed” up By Maya Brooks T elling Key’isha Manassa not to become a teen parent is like preach- ing to the choir. The 17-year-old Detroiter, whose mother gave birth to her at age 17, says she simply sat back and watched what happened to other teens that had early pregnancies. She knows 10 girls who have gotten pregnant this school year. Some are her colleagues at Michigan Collegiate in Warren; others are friends from the Boys Girls Club on the city’s east side. A family friend is 21 and pregnant with her fourth child, and Manassa has “They are very sexual to the point where it’s almost like another teen girlfriend with a two-year-old. they are overly stimulated,” she says. “They are curious, “When I hear that someone my age is pregnant, I automatically think their life is over,” and it’s almost like they are experimenting. As far as being says the high school junior who plans to become an accountant. “They don’t have a teenag- homosexual or straight, I see a lot of them going back er’s life anymore. Those days are over. They have to worry about how to buy Pampers and and forth. They aren’t sure of their sexuality, and the teen- milk. They have to hurry up and move to adulthood really fast.” aged girls feel they have to put out to be accepted, and they equate sex with love. It’s almost like they don’t have Although birth and abortion rates among American teens fell to the lowest rate in 40 any self-worth.” years, birth rates for African American and Hispanic teens were more than twice those of their She’s fright- Male peers brag about the Keyisha Manassa white peers, researchers with the Guttmacher Institute, a nonprofit sexual health research ened that girls don’t girls with whom they have group, reported last month. And after analyzing their own data and government statistics on know not to allow teen sex, births and abortions in 2008—the last year for which data was available—Black girls had abortions four had sex, and the other girls times the rate of their Caucasian counterparts. boys to touch their bodies at will. Re- work behind the scenes to Parents, teachers and community leaders say despite their best efforts, it’s difficult to convince teens to heed warnings intended to deter them from early sexual activity before they understand potential consequences such as cently, she says, keep the rumor mill turn- one of the girls was pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases and tainted reputations. caught in the boys’ ing. Schianti Jaramillo, a Wayne County high school teacher, says she’s alarmed by the level of sexual activity she’s restroom having sex with her ex-boyfriend, and finds it seen at the suburban school she preferred not to identify. disturbing because it doesn’t seem that talking to many of the teens is doing much good. LivingWELL • • March 20128 LivingWELL August 2011
  9. 9. “People make permanent decisions based on temporary circumstances, and it’s just a human flaw. The younger you are, the less exposed you are and the more apt you are to make mistakes that humans make. They don’t realize it; it’s emotional, it’s hormonal and sometimes, it’s not even a thought.” That’s what Angela Smith, a church youth group leader from Oak Park, says she sees among the teens who attend the youth group meetings in Redford. “Teenagers know a lot about sex, and they are quite aware of protection. Some teenagers are sexually active and the parents put the girls on birth control pills,” she says. Parents are talking to the kids about sex, but I don’t think many of them are listening. I believe the kids are going to do what they want to do. They are taking heed to direction from adults right now, they are just living.” Not all teens are focused on sex, though. Like Manassa, Austin Leake of Southfield says he realizes now is the time for him to focus on his education. The high school junior plans to go to college so he can “get away from his parents” and become independent. But he says he’s not immune to the activity swirling around him. Just last month, a girl left school because she was pregnant and beingAustin Leake (left) and his mother Audra Erby-Leake. teased about it. He listens as his male peers brag about the girls withTheir ability to talk candidly about teen sex and its pit- whom they have had sex, and the other girls working behind thefalls is a plus, according to experts who state that open scenes to keep the rumor mill turning.communication about sex promotes abstinence. “It’s a personal thing,” says the 16-year-old who attends University “I don’t know if they think it’s not a big deal, but I High School in Ferndale. “And if I do it, it’s not something I want to godo think it’s a lack of self-worth and they are not being around and brag about like the kids at my school. It should be some-taught that there are boundaries,” she shares. “This year, thing special, and it’s not something I would do every other day. It’s justI had three girls who had children the same age as my not the most important thing in my life right now.’’18-month-old. We have a lot of girls who have babies His mother, Audra Erby-Leake, says she works to help him understandat the school.” how to avoid the pitfalls. Jaramillo says she wishes she could figure out a way “The biggest thing is about respecting and valuing yourself,” she reach them. “When he’s approached by girls who ask, ‘Hey, can I go down on you?,’ I “I don’t have the “People make permanent say, ‘If she’s willing to do that for you, you have to think about what she’sanswer to reach our doing for somebody else.’”community,” she decisions based on tem- Those kinds of messages that don’t beat your children over thesays. “But we’ve got porary circumstances.” – head but get the point across are important, says Delvin Smith, whoto figure out a way Angelo Henderson, direc- is a single parent to his 14-year-old educate them.It’s really, really sad tor of community outreach “I tell her that sex is something you share with a person that you truly love, and the longer you wait for sex, the better it will be forbecause we have a at Triumph Churchgeneration of girls you and your sex partner,” he says. “I tell her I’m not cut out to bewho are one day going to be women who may or may a grandfather just yet, but I know that with her being 14, her hor-not be mothers. They are not going to be able to teach mones are off the chain.”their children to not go down this road or be an example Smith says since he works as a mechanic, and spends late nightsof how you should carry yourself as a woman. working clubs and events as “DJ Del,” his daughter is left alone in “Most of the girls have these issues, and if you meet their Centerline home more often than he would like. He knows hethe parents, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. They can warn her all he wants, but he can’t watch her every second.say, ‘My mom doesn’t care about me right now because “She is on birth control,” he acknowledges. “I would rather forshe’s up under this guy.’ You know people can change her to be on birth control and tell me she’s not doing anything thanand grow, but what we see in the school system is eight have her come home four or five months later and say, ‘Daddy, I’m preg-out of 10 times, the cycle repeats itself and they can’t get nant.’”out of it.” However, Manassa says some girls she knows actually think that’s Angelo B. Henderson, host of “cute.” the radio talk show, “Your Voice Then she thinks about her 21-year-old friend with the three with Angelo Henderson” (1200 AM young children with another one on the way. WCHB and 99.9 FM) and the direc- ”She has to struggle to get Pampers,” she explains. “Her kids tor of community outreach at Tri- are all about the same age. One baby is crying while another one umph Church, says specific issues is on her hip crying. Two of them can’t walk, and one of them is relate to people of color and young girls having babies. just learning to walk. She’s got to potty change and buy multiple for- “Teen girls feel they have to put mulas. She is really struggling.” “They don’t have the resourc- out to be accepted, and theyAngelo B. Henderson Manassa also realizes that unfortunately, the girls end up with the responsibil- es they need from education tohousing, tutoring, music and travel—all of the things that ity, and the boys seem to have a choice about whether they decide to step up and equate sex with love. It’s almostmake a child more well-rounded,” says Henderson, who become responsible or not. like they don’t have any self-also is co-founder of Detroit 300, a grassroots organiza- Says Manassa: “You know what they say, ‘Momma’s baby, Poppa’s maybe.”tion that combats crime in neighborhoods. worth.” -Schianti Jaramillo LivingWELL • March 2012 LivingWELL • August 2011 9
  10. 10. When It Comes to Teen Pregnancy and Sex, CDC Confirms:THE BLOG LOG Teenagers are Morons By NICK CHILES H aving brought a boy all the way through teen hood—he is just months from his 20th birthday— I must say I wasn’t sur- prised to read that teen- agers don’t know nearly as much about sex as perhaps we think they do. A new Centers for Disease Control survey of a thousand teenage mothers revealed that a third of them didn’t use birth control because they didn’t think they could get pregnant. Wow. While the CDC didn’t follow up to find out how that preposterous idea could creep into their still- forming adolescent minds, I have my own theory: teen- agers are morons. I speak here from years of experi- ence: being a teen, observ- ing other teens, raising a teen. There is no explanation for about 75 So if a teenage girl can make it through adolescence and still think she can’t percent of the things they do—leaving you with just that one conclusion get pregnant the first time she has intercourse, what it tells me is that when it (the one about them being morons). comes to our children’s education in matters like sex, we must overdo it. Early and often, way before they get to the point where they are considering actually Of course, the basic fact of their moronic-ness is the last thing they having sex, we must take every opportunity to make it clear to them what sex would like the world to believe about them. But teenagers are the mas- is and what results from it. The information must flow freely. All the time. ters of deception. Their entire public persona is designed to fool you into thinking they know more than they actually do about EVERYTHING. On the way home from church on a recent afternoon, when one of my pre- They are particularly dedicated to presuming knowledge about adult adolescent daughters asked me what was the difference between the many re- matters—sex, alcohol, drugs, driving. These tend to be the things they ligions whose churches surround us here in Georgia, I used it as an opportunity know least about. to talk to them about Catholicism and sex and birth control. My wife and I try to have these sex conversations as often as we can, approaching them from a In all of our teenage interactions, if we adults adopt the perspective myriad of different directions. We believe that it’s not possible to talk about this that we are dealing with the behavior and rantings of an entire subspe- too much. Our hope is that when the teenage years are upon us once again and cies of morons, we will save ourselves much heartache and anguish. the idiocy starts creeping into their brains, there will be so much good, solid Barbara Strauch, a former colleague of mine who is now a New York information stuffed in there that there will be very little room for the idiocy to Times science editor, wrote a brilliant book eight years ago called The get comfortable. So there will be little chance that they could ever tell the CDC Primal Teen: What the New Discoveries about the Teenage Brain Tell Us or anyone else that they didn’t know a girl could get pregnant the first time. At about Our Kids. In the book, Strauch reveals all the dramatic changes least that’s our plan. the brain undergoes during the teen years, offering a measure of ex- That, and a whole bunch of praying. planation why body snatchers come along and transform our children into these sullen, rebellious, sometimes ridiculous individuals. In other words, she explains why they become morons. Editor’s Note: Author Nick Chiles, a regular contributor to With my son, I tried to understand his sometimes infuriating be- LivingWELL magazine, blogs on He is havior—and the fact that we were often clashing—by noting that pretty a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and the author of seven much everything he wanted to do with his time every minute of the day books, including the New York Times bestselling tome The Blue- was the opposite of what I wanted him to do. And we’re talking here print: A Plan for Living Above Life’s Storms, co-written with gospel about a good kid—straight A’s, star football player. I can’t even imagine legend Kirk Franklin. how unpleasant those years would have been if he were a true bad ass.10 LivingWELL • • March 201210 LivingWELL August 2011
  11. 11. 35% of African American have high blood pressure.* Do you know yours? • HEALTH SCREENING • REFERRALS • SMOKING CESSATION • PERSONALIZED CARE PLANS Professional Medical Center*2010 CDC health survey3956 Mt. Elliott 20901 West Seven Mile Rd. 18060 Conant 2051 West Grand Blvd, Fifth floor 15200 Gratiot Detroit 48207 Detroit 48219 Detroit 48234 Detroit 48208 Detroit 48205 313-925-4540 313-532-2000 313-891-0044 313-894-4244 313-526-2376 LivingWELL • • August 2011 11 LivingWELL March 2012 11
  12. 12. Breakkeep your workouts working Tips to Boredom By Sterling Wise 2. Static strength: holding weight in a contracted position. T here is nothing quite as frustrating as seeing your results 3. Negative strength: lowering the weight. fizzle out. Most people completely miss the benefit of the negative in each This is a common place to end up, usually after a repetition by allowing the weight to drop quickly with little control. few months on the same exercise routine. In the begin- It is understood that the negative portion of each repetition is just as ning your body responds to your routine with lost pounds and important as the positive portion, possibly more important. gained muscle tone, then one day all results screech to a stop. Focus on the negative portion of each repetition by lowering Why does this happen? And, more importantly, how can you the weight very slowly. Concentrate on the negative contraction, prevent it? and make each repetition count. Your muscles adapt quickly to any repetitive routine. Re- If you are advanced, then use a training partner to assist you member that the definition of ‘insanity’ is to do the same thing in moving heavier-than-normal weight into a contracted position, over and over while expecting different results. This holds true then lower it very slowly. for your workouts. Another way to utilize negative When your results stop, it’s time to do something new. repetitions on a machine is to lift the weight using two limbs but • The problem: Your muscles have adapted to your routine. then lower it with just one. • The Solution: It’s time to apply the concept of muscle For example, use both legs confusion. to lift the weight on a leg extension machine, but Muscle confusion is a way to keep your then lower it back down body guessing by changing your routine. slowly using only one leg. I have good news: the following four strategies are guaranteed to crank your Strategy #3: workouts up to the next level and to Use Active Rest deliver better results. Every minute of your work- out is an opportunity to increase Strategy #1: Use a Drop intensity and to burn more fat. Don’t Set waste precious minutes with long rest Drop sets are often used to periods. fight off exercise plateaus. This While it is important to catch your breath if you feel technique is great for increasing winded, most of the time you would benefit more from an active muscle strength, endurance and rest. Do one of the following activities for 30 seconds between for adding to the cardiovascular exercises and turn your regular workout into High Intensity Interval benefit of your workout - which Training. results in more fat burn. • High Knees with Alternating Punches: Alternately bring each This is how to do a drop set: knee high to your chest in a quick jumping movement while alter- When you perform an exercise nating forward punches at shoulder level. to exhaustion, don’t stop there. Drop the weight by 80% and do • Burpees: Start in a sanding position and bend at the waist. Once another set. your hands hit the floor, push your entire body back, extending your legs until they’re straight and you’re in the push-up position. You could take it a step fur- Go down for a push-up, and when you push yourself up, jump ther by dropping the weight twice, slightly to bring your feet back near your hands. Finally, jump in making it a double drop. Or drop the air with your arms fully extended over your head. the weight three times for a descend- ing drop set. Use this technique only once or twice per workout, • Side-to-Side Jumps on Bench: Stand on one side of an exer- on the final set of the exercise. cise bench. Place the foot closest up onto the bench, jump up and switch feet, then land on the opposite side of the bench. Strategy #2: Focus on Negatives • Mountain Climbers: Place your hands wider than shoulder- Each time that you do a weight lifting repetition you are using width apart on the ground in a push-up position. Bring one knee three types of strength. to your chest and then back to the starting position, alternate each 1. Positive strength: lifting the weight. leg quickly.12 LivingWELL • • March 201212 LivingWELL August 2011
  13. 13. When your results stop, it’s time to do something new.• Side-to-Side Ab Twists: With feet close together, jump and The squat. The lunge. The chest press. The shoulder press. Find Your Motivationtwist your legs left to right - holding your abs tight. Keep a bend The bicep curl. You get the idea... Motivation comes from having a goal. What is yourin your knees and swing your upper arms with each twist. While you shouldn’t throw these exercises out the window, goal? Why do you want to get into great shape?• Jump Lunges with Pop Squat: Start in a lunge position, lunge find creative ways to modify the familiar motion in order to chal- Take a minute to really uncover the reason that youdown then quickly jump up, switching your leg position in lenge your muscles. Try these exercise modifications: want to lose the weight. Don’t say something vague likemidair, land in an opposite leg lunge. Once you’ve done both • Squat on a Bosu ball or balance board. you want to ‘Be thinner’ or ‘Look more attractive.’ Diglegs, jump straight into a squat. deeper - there is a very specific motivator in your life, • Place a weighted bar across your shoulders and do walking you simply need to uncover it.• Medicine Ball Squat Jumps: With feet wider than shoulder- lunges.width apart hold a medicine ball at chest level. Squat down until Here are some possible motivators...your knees are at a 90 degree angle. Explosively jump up, rais- • Use an exercise ball for chest presses instead of the the medicine ball straight over your head. • I want to have more energy to keep up with the kids. • Do a full squat between each repetition of shoulder presses.Strategy #4: Modify the Exercise There are • Do a shoulder press between each repetition of bicep curls. • I want to improve my health through weight loss tocertain exercises that are considered ‘staples’ extend and improve my the gym. • I want to lose 15 pounds before my vacation. A Wise choice Wise soon discovered that his occasional workouts could not compensate for his three-fried-chicken –dinner-a-week habit. Tired of being overweight and restricted to shopping at XXL The Wise Decision was launched in 2007 by Sterling Wise, stores, Wise decided to make a total life change. After researching a certified personal trainer (CPT). Before becoming a personal nutrition and fitness, he began to eat healthy foods regularly and em- trainer, Wise struggled with his own weight. Like many obese barked on a daily exercise plan which helped him lose 60 pounds. Americans, his struggles began early in his childhood and, unre- Today, the 180-pound Wise shares his success with others, teaching his clients to reach their solved, carried over to his adult life. After many failed attempts at fitness goals. dieting and fitness plans, Wise’ tipped the scales at 240 pounds. “It wasn’t easy, but I’m living proof that if you are serious and determined that it can be done.” “I ate whatever and whenever I wanted,” stated Wise. “And I actually thought that it was okay because I worked out occasion- Editor’s note: Sterling Wise is a certified fitness consultant and owner of The Wise Group. For ad- ally, which for me was maybe once a week.” ditional information, contact Sterling at 877.402.3348 or visit: LivingWELL ••March 2012 13 LivingWELL August 2011 13
  14. 14. Power Over Pain Chronic pain management dicted and increasing her dosage didn’t necessarily mean that her cancer was advancing. research project delivers April Vallerand, an associate professor in the College of Nurs- ing at Wayne State University, who has worked with pain pa- relief to participants tients for 20 years, developed the three-year study that began in April 2011 to learn how to better help African Americans like Woods who experience chronic pain. An estimated 116 mil- lion Americans live with chronic pain, and several studies show that African Americans have the most poorly man- aged pain when compared to other groups for a number of reasons, including failure to properly take medication, lack of communication with physicians and difficulty getting adequate medication. “I targeted African Americans because my previous research shows they had more pain than their white colleagues,” she says. “We need to do better, and they seem to be the people that needed it most.” Vallerand says nearly all patients with advanced cancer ex- perience severe pain, and almost half of all other cancer patients have some pain, regardless of the type or stage of the disease. The trouble is pain often limits a patient’s daily activities, social interactions and can cause distress. Cassandra “I realized I need to share with my physician when I’m not com- Woods Her study is funded by a three-year, $1,078,000 award from fortable,” she says. “That is not a sign of weakness. That is not a sign the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health is of me being a sissy because are things out there designed to make my among the growing body of research focused on eliminating the life more comfortable, that I legitimately have access to. When I’m disparity with African Americans living with chronic pain. taking my medications as prescribed, I feel good all the time.” A new study released by University of Michigan Health But Woods has not always been open and honest about her pain, By Maya Brooks System researchers earlier this month shined another light on the and often hides it from her daughter and live-in caretaker, Tracie Al- topic. The study suggests that living in a poor neighborhood was S exander, 43. The pair still sometimes battles about Woods properly hortly after Cassandra Woods was diagnosed with linked with worse chronic pain for adults younger than 50, but taking her medication, which has improved. However, Alexander breast cancer for the third time in 2008, she ex- young African Americans faced difficulties with pain manage- says Woods still struggles with that. perienced pain she had never known before. Her ment no matter where they lived. pain was so intense, she would lie in bed at night, rock- Alexander says she’s become so attuned with her mother that ing and crying. Vallerand’s coaching intervention study includes going to she can hear Woods take her medication and know which one she’s the home to talk with the patient and their caregiver, medica- taken and how much. “I thought I actually was going into a more psychot- tion management, a follow-up phone call and pain advocacy that ic situation than physical, because the pain was from teaches them how to improve communication with their physi- “She’s supposed to take her morphine three times a day, but my head to my toes,” says the Detroiter who has been a cian. sometimes she takes it twice a day,” says Alexander, who also cares long-time advocate for cancer disparities and the state for her 92-year-old grandmother and 8-year-old daughter. “When director for U.S. Senator Carl Levin (D-Michigan). “The So far, 82 people have participated in the study, and Valle- she’s away from me, I’m terribly concerned. I’m terribly worried. If Kevorkian theory was a consideration. That’s how bad rand is targeting 256 patients and their caregivers. she’s feeling good, she’s still reluctant to take the medication. I tell my pain was.” her, ‘Once the pain is on you, it’s more difficult to push it away. “I’m seeing their pain go down,” Valle- We’re still struggling with that. My greatest prayer is she’s not suf- Although her oncologist prescribed morphine and rand says, “and it’s exciting to see how much fering.” other pain medications, she skipped doses and contin- better they are doing. We had patients who ued to bear the pain because she thought it was simply weren’t motivated, and weren’t leaving the Woods says she has learned to live with her cancer, and doesn’t part of her journey. Besides that, she secretly feared house. This gives them a sense that they allow herself to suffer because being in pain takes the joy out of life. becoming a morphine addict and felt that consistently know what to do about their pain. Now, they She’s making plans to be around for as long as she can and dreams having to take pain meds was a sign of weakness. are getting out, going to the mall and visiting about taking her family to Africa next year and is coming up with friends. Sometimes, it’s changing your per- ideas to celebrate her 65th birthday. But after participating in a six-week “Power Over spective.” Pain Coaching Study,” a pain management research April Vallerand “Since being in the program, I am taking one more pain pill that project designed to help African Americans living with When the study ends in 2014, Vallerand makes all the difference in the world,” she says. “I’m ready to do cancer in Metro Detroit, Woods learned she could plans to use the research to help other chronic pain sufferers. anything. I’m trusting in God, and I’m believing that he may not cure remain pain free if she properly took her medications. me, but he’s going to keep me around for a good, long time.” Woods says the study has improved her awareness of what She also discovered she wasn’t going to become ad- she needs to do to manage her pain. LivingWELL • March 201114 LivingWELL • August 2012
  15. 15. Teaching kids aboutBy Patricia Hubbell money can also improve adult financial literacyL et’s face it: Many of us don’t do the greatest job managing our personal finances. A recent Freakonomics blog post discussed the woeful state of most Americans’ financial literacy, outlining several troubling habits that leave people unprepared to weathermany fairly predictable events. Worse yet, many Americans have no idea how to make the most of their money. So how do we teach kids how to save, invest wisely and make sound financial deci- sions when we are treading in the murky waters of money madness? There are plenty of good financial literacy programs to go around, as well as some common-sense tips to smart money. Hands-on learning is a great way to help kids learn about the complicated world of money. Many students benefit from a programPatricia Hubbell called Junior Achievement (JA). JA of Southeastern Michigan hasbeen teaching critical financial literacy for kids in metro Detroit for more than 60 years.Students receive 27 weeks of classroom instruction that prepares them to make informedand responsible choices that impact their ability to manage personal finances. Students con-clude the instruction with a day-long visit to Quicken Loans JA Finance Park in Detroit, wherethey put their learning into action by making simulated purchases and budget decisions. Here are simple tips for parents from the Making financial literacy a family affair also helps both adults and children improve their Washington Department of Financial Institutions:money-managing skills. ■ Start young. Research suggests that children as young as 3 years old are Good money management takes knowledge, discipline and practice. Do you have any able to comprehend the concept of money. Play games such as counting ormoney-saving tips to share? sorting coins.Editor’s Note: Patricia Hubbell is a communications planner for Blue Cross Blue Shield of ■ Give your child an allowance. Start small; pay them for help around the Michigan. house. As they get older, teach them how to budget for expenses they will come across as they get older. ■ Set up and investment or savings account. Start around age 8. Introduce them to concepts such as banking, savings, interest and investing. ■ Practice what you preach. Demonstrate what smart money decisions are all about. Be open about your finances. Include the family on some decisions about budget priorities and purchases. ■ Encourage children to play games that teach smart money management habits. The Internet is filled with fun games that teach kids about money. Continue the conversation at: www.aHealthierMichigan.orgAngela Wynn, BCBSM community liaison, assists a student with health insurancechoices during a budgeting lesson at Quicken Loans JA Finance Park. LivingWELL ••March 2012 15 LivingWELL August 2011
  16. 16. More people carry it. More doctors and hospitals accept it. It’s one amazing little card. When you carry a card from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, you get incredible value. Value that comes from having access to high-quality care, the largest network in Michigan and your choice of countless plans that give you the flexibility to get exactly the right coverage for you and your family. So you can always feel confident that you’ll get excellent care wherever, whenever you need it. Leading Michigan to a healthier future. SM LivingWELL • March 201116 LivingWELL • August 2012 Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is a nonprofit corporation and independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Blue