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Showing posts from April, 2016

Foodie Friday: The Scoop on Dried Fruit

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Did you know that April 30 is National Raisin Day? 
While we often think of raisins and other dried fruit as not-so-exciting additions to cereal, muffins or trail mix, these dehydrated bits can have a bigger role in a healthy diet. Here are some health benefits of dried fruit, plus some things to watch out for:
Benefits:
Most of the nutrition of the fresh fruit is still in the dried fruitThe concentrated sweet taste may help you replace cookies, candy and other non-nutritious sweets with a small amount of dried fruitDried fruit is a great, portable snack that needs no refrigeration, no cutting and no special packaging

Watch out for:
Mindless noshing on dried fruits can lead to a lot of sugar and calories fastSome dried fruits have added sugar (like dried cranberries)Dried fruits should not make up the majority of fruit in your diet. It’s okay from time to time, though.

How GMC Can Help

Read more nutritional information in our online Health (e) Library, or explore new recipes on our Pinterest…

S-t-r-e-t-c-h!

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Oh, flexibility. How we enjoy being flexible, but how we often neglect to improve. When I spent my days teaching freshmen wellness and junior athletic trainers, my mantra was often, longer muscles are stronger muscles. Flexible muscles are torn less. My husband will give me a huff, eye roll and sarcastic laugh when my answer for his back pain, sore knee or stiff neck is “Honey, just stretch.”
Well, it’s all true.
Here’s what I know about flexibility:
Flexibility is the ability to move a joint or a series of joints through a full range of motion easily, smoothly and appropriately.

Flexibility keeps muscles long, limiting inflammation of joints and tendons. When muscles are immobile or limited, they produce lactic acid and inflammation. This causes soreness and pain over time.

Long muscles are stronger. Think in terms of lever arms, the longer the lever arm, the more force produced. Same with muscles. We can’t change where they originate or attach, but we can increase their fiber length. Se…

Upcoming Community Classes and Events

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All these classes and more will be offered by Gwinnett Medical Center. If a registration number is not listed, please call 678-312-5000 to register, or register online at gwinnettmedicalcenter.org/classes.
Scroll to the bottom of the list to see some of our support groups. A full list of support groups is available here.
Monthly Pre-Diabetes Classes If you’ve been told you have pre-diabetes, or are at high risk of developing diabetes, take charge of your health! Learn effective lifestyle strategies that can dramatically improve your overall health and reduce your chances of developing Type 2 diabetes. Topics include healthy eating, reading food labels, importance of exercise, and weight management. Presented by a registered dietitian, certified diabetes educator, this class is for ages 18 years and older. All classes will be held 5 – 7:30 p.m. There is no cost to attend, but registration is required.

For more information or to register, please call 678-312-6048.

Lawrenceville classes:
Jun…

Tell Me What I Can Do: Recovery Strategies

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By Jessica Poole Certified Athletic Trainer
As a certified athletic trainer I spend about 60 percent of my breath telling people what they cannot do, reminding them not to do things and encouraging baby steps towards healing. However, what I enjoy the most is explaining what they can do, not only after healing, but in the meantime.
Continuing to exercising and doing what they enjoy while they are healing speeds the emotional and psychological process. I enjoy the challenge of creating clever and safe alternatives in order to stay active during recovery from an injury.
So today, I want to tell you what you can do.
But first, please remember:
Clear activities with your doctor if you are under the care of oneListen to your bodyIf pain occurs, stop and see a doctorMake sure to rest, recover and eat well so your body will healUse good common sense

Because so many activities and sports involve our legs, and because if you’re injured it’s nearly impossible to not be weight bearing, I am going t…

Foodie Friday: Better Your BLT

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It’s National BLT Sandwich Month, and who doesn’t love a good BLT (bacon, lettuce and tomato)? 
Here in the South, the perfect BLT is made with savory bacon, crisp lettuce and mouthwatering summer tomatoes, all piled on white bread. Usually the debate centers around which brand of mayonnaise to use.
But it’s probably not the healthiest sandwich choice with high levels of salt and saturated fat, and low levels of protein and fiber.
Here are some ideas to enjoy your BLT, and make it a little healthier, too.
Use avocado or a thin layer of low-fat cream cheese as a spread on the bread instead of mayonnaiseUse whole grain bread instead of white breadMake it open-faced, using lettuce to substitute for the top layer of breadSkip the bread altogether and wrap the tomato and bacon (and maybe a slice of avocado) in a lettuce leafUse turkey bacon instead of regular baconUse half the amount of regular bacon, but crumble it into bacon bits so you’ll get some in every biteDouble up on the tomatoes for…

Surprising Causes of Memory Loss

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You forget to pick up your child from soccer practice. 
Or your dad can’t find his car keys. 
Or grandma is asking the same question every half hour. 
Is it Alzheimer’s disease?
Maybe.
But before you rush to the conclusion that it’s Alzheimer’s, take a look at these common things that can cause memory loss: Depression and stressSleep deprivationAlcohol, tobacco or drug useMedicationsNutritional deficiencies (especially B1 and B12)Head injuryStrokeInfectionThyroid (under- or overactive)

Treatment for memory loss will depend on the cause. In a lot of cases, especially with some of the causes, above, memory loss can be reversed. 
The first step is to see your primary health care provider. Share your concerns, bring a complete list of medications and follow through with any recommendations or testing.
How GMC Can Help
Find the perfect physician for you at gwinnettmedicalcenter.org/physician.

Urgent Care or ER? Five Common Scenarios

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You’re not feeling well, but do your symptoms warrant a trip to urgent care or the emergency room? Read on for five common situations:
1. Possible Broken Bone It’s a Saturday afternoon and that game of backyard football got a bit too rambunctious. Now you’re cradling your wrist in pain, but you can’t tell whether it’s broken or just sprained. While either a broken or sprained wrist doesn’t rise to the level of requiring a trip to the hospital ER, it’s probably not going to be comfortable to wait till your primary care physician is open on Monday. Head to urgent care to get it checked out.
2. Burns You’re putting a sheet of cookies in the oven when your hand brushes against the side of the oven. A small, red welt appears, but after you apply cool water to it, the pain subsides. This is most likely a first-degree burn and will probably heal on its own.
But if you notice blistering or have severe pain or swelling, you have entered second-degree burn territory, which does require a trip to urge…

More Fiber in Girls' Diet May Lower Breast Cancer Risk Later

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Teenage girls who get plenty of fiber in their diets may have a lower risk of breast cancer later in life, a new, large study suggests.
The study, published online Feb. 1 in the journal Pediatrics, does not prove that fiber, itself, helps prevent breast cancer. But researchers said it offers some of the first strong evidence that fiber consumption is linked to breast cancer risk, and it hints that the teen years could be particularly important.
Fiber-rich foods include vegetables, fruits, beans and whole grains. Most past studies have failed to uncover a correlation between fiber and breast cancer risk. But in just the past year, a few have suggested there may be some connection after all, according to Dr. Kathleen Harnden, co-author of an editorial published with the study.
"These new findings add to evidence that fiber may be protective for some women, and that fiber intake at a certain time in life may be important," said Harnden, a hematology-oncology fellow at Duke Univ…

Diabetes & Summer: Heat, Feet and Supplies

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When the temperature gets even mildly hot and humid (above 80 degrees with 40 percent humidity), people with diabetes should be careful as they’re at higher risk of dehydration, heat exhaustion and foot problems.
Dehydration and Heat Exhaustion: You can’t always rely on how much you’re sweating as an indicator of how hot it is. High blood glucose levels can dehydrate you, preventing the body from sweating normally, and causing you to pass more urine than usual. And some medications increase the risk of dehydration.
Feet First: In addition to the heat, in summer be extra careful with your feet if you have diabetes. An injury from walking barefoot or from wearing sandals can go unnoticed if you have diabetic foot, a condition that causes numbness in the feet. And unnoticed means untreated for longer periods of time. Plus, diabetes decreases blood flow, so injuries are slower to heal. So wear supportive shoes, inspect your feet daily and if you find a sore or wound see your doctor right aw…

Go Out and Play, Benefits Beyond the Gym

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Spring is here with its heavy pollen. 
Summer’s heat is around the corner. 
Fall is busy and in winter, well, it’s cold outside. 
There are lots of excuses not to exercise outdoors.
So when the excuses start popping into your head, and get yourself out there anyway.
A growing body of research shows strong support for the idea that exercising outside is loaded with health benefits—both physically and mentally. While we all know that we need to exercise regularly to be physically healthy, exercising outdoors can offer benefits that can’t be found at the gym or inside the home. Here are a few reasons to go play outdoors:
Improved Mood—Any physical activity improves your mood, but it appears that exercising outdoors can noticeably increase this positive affect.  A short brisk walk through the park can change your outlook for the better.More Energy—Any exercise can help reinvigorate you when you're feeling listless, but a dose of fresh air can really up the effect.Greater Likelihood To Keep …