The Feel-Good Report
You Better Get Moving
I know we say this every month, but you’re a slacker. And as soon as you stop being a slacker, we’ll stop calling you out on it. But there is hope. And as is so often the case, it comes in the form of technology. The Nike+ FuelBand is a cool new electronic bangle that tracks any and all physical activity—from walking to the mailbox to jogging across town. It features a three-axis accelerometer that interprets each move into something called NikeFuel—a four-digit score Nike developed to express how much work you’ve done (or haven’t done). The more you move, the more points you earn.
It connects wirelessly to your iPhone in order to break down your daily performance. The assumption is that if you see just how much activity you do via a four-digit number, you will be inclined to try and beat those scores, thus becoming more active. Set goals. Turn every day into a game. Stop being a slacker. Sounds good to us. And did we mention it features a really cool flashing LED display? They’re priced at $149 and come in any color you like—as long as it’s black.
Hair Today, Gone in 15 Minutes
Life is filled with little inconveniences: neighbors, taxes, back hair. And though neighbors and taxes are always going to be around, unwanted hair can be zapped away with the flash of a laser. The problem is that it can be time-consuming and painful. (Two things we’re not excited about.) Luckily there is a new laser in town dedicated to nothing but hair removal. It’s called the Light Sheer Duet, and Skin Deep Laser Services in Naples has the only one between Tampa and Miami.
Most lasers at spas or doctors’ offices are multi-purpose (facial resurfacing, vein reduction, etc.), meaning they don’t do any one thing great. But because the Light Sheer Duet is singularly purposed it can cut the amount of time to do, for example, a guy’s back from 60 minutes down to 15 or 20. And the best part? It is a pain-free laser. Most hair removal lasers require numbing creams and still feel as if you’re repeatedly being snapped by a rubber band. And we’ve been told there are parts of the body that don’t appreciate that feeling. Skin Deep Laser Services, 5490 Bryson Drive, Naples. 260-5060
Videos for What Ails You
When Ted Wolfendale’s mother, Lynette Wolfendale, started Naples’ first on-call nursing service, Dial-A-Nurse, back in 1978, few would have guessed that the venture would blossom into a side business that is saving lives across the globe. National Education Video was started when our federal government began requiring continuing education for nurses. Ted filmed experts explaining the new coursework, and Nevco was born. Whether it was videos on infection control or patient assessment, Nevco soon became the go-to source for continuing education for staff at assisted living facilities, nursing homes, hospitals and universities and more.
Ted quickly realized that this education could cross borders and soon the videos were being used in third world countries to teach proper medical care to people who very likely had no education whatsoever. It has literally been a lifesaver. But now Nevco offers videos on a wide range of health topics that might be of use to people on the other side of the stethoscope. Titles such as Keeping Control: Living with Diabetes, After the Heart Attack: Cardiovascular Care Today and Stroke Patient: A Comprehensive Guide along with several others give viewers the knowledge to cope and thrive with various ailments. The DVDs are now available at walmart.com or just go to Nevco’s website, www.healthlibrary4u.com and click on its online store.
Walk More, Crave Less
“Take a hike.” Oh, how often I’ve heard that phrase. But it turns out all of those girls were just thinking of my health. It seems recent studies have found that the mere act of taking a walk can help reduce cravings of everything from chocolate to junk food to cigarettes. That’s right, a brisk walk down the street can significantly diminish the urge to do almost anything bad for you. (A 60-minute walk will have you miss an entire episode of Jersey Shore.)
In one study, a group of regular chocolate eaters (were you in this group?) who ate at least two candy bars a day were told to go cold turkey for three days. They were then divided into various groups including a control group. If the subjects walked for 15 minutes at a steady (but not tiring) pace, they were significantly less inclined to have cravings and even showed lowered blood pressure when asked to handle chocolate bars. (It seems cruel, but that’s science.) Another study along the same ilk saw smokers’ urge to smoke diminished significantly after they took a steady 15-minute walk. Walks have even been shown to reduce withdrawal symptoms and increase the time between cigarettes.
And all this time I just thought they wanted me to leave.
Controlling Your Health Records
Lets face it: you don’t speak medical-ese and you don’t have a photographic memory. More often than not, as soon as you walk out of your doctor’s office you have absolutely no clue what was said. It’s not only frustrating, it’s dangerous. That’s why there is such a huge push for you to keep your own notes and keep copies of your medical transcripts. But that’s easier said than done. Luckily, there is a new business whose job it is to help you keep your medical records so that when you go from one doctor to the next, they know as much as possible about your medical past.
“As a nurse, I would see patients come into the office, and they’d come in with either a random stack of papers or absolutely nothing,” says Lori-Jane Leo, the CEO of Focus Health Seminars in Naples. “We put the information together in a format that can include the doctor’s notes and more. It’s also easy for the patient to know how to file it.”
Currently, Focus Health Seminars (FHS) creates specially designed binders that file a patient’s records in such a way that they can make life immeasurably easier for doctors and nurses to know your medical history. FHS even teaches you how to gather and file the information on your own. If you prefer a bit more modern approach to record keeping, FHS is working on digitizing medical records so your information is available on your smart phone, a key fob or a convenient memory stick. For more information, check out www.focushealthseminars.com or call (855) 217-1110.
Swim and Prosper
Remember the song I Wanna Be a Lifeguard? No? That’s too bad, because in addition to being one of the songs featured on MTV’s very first broadcast, it included the brilliant lyrics “I wanna guard your life.” It turns out swimming might do exactly that.
Sure, swimming is great for keeping you slim and toned. In addition to that, a recent study in the American Journal of Cardiology shows vascular health benefits for older, sedentary adults. The study recruited adults ages 50 to 80 years with pre- or low-grade hypertension. They swam three or four days a week for between 15 and 45 minutes for 12 weeks. At the end of the study, they had reduced their systolic blood pressure 7 percent and their arteries showed signs of better elasticity and more responsive to changes in blood flow. Guard your life, indeed.