Baby Boomers: Don’t Let Osteoarthritis Slow You Down

Five words   or less(NewsUSA) – Osteoarthritis affects an estimated 27 million Americans and is the most common type of arthritis. Women over the age of 50 have a greater risk of …

Three Ways the Oil Spill May Threaten Human Health

The massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has many people fearing the environmental impact of pumping 210,000 gallons of toxic oil into a large marine ecosystem. But if the oil rig’s fluid-control systems fail, the expanding oil slick may also become a human health threat.

Little attention has been given to preparing for the worst-case scenario – a catastrophic failure of the BP Deepwater Horizon wellhead and fluid-control systems. Right now, the leaking oil pipes slow the amount of oil released by the rig. Should they fail, the oil slick could increase by 60,000 to 160,000 barrels per day – that’s the equivalent of one Valdez every two days.

Steady Steps to Prevent Seniors’ Slips and Falls

Five words or less
(NewsUSA) – Slips and falls are a common cause of injury in the United States, and the risk increases with age. According to the Centers for Disease Control …

Break Into Business With a Franchise

<b>Break Into Business With a Franchise</b>“></td>
<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Many Americans dream of entering the business world, but don’t know how to get started. Giving up one job to start from the bottom in another sector isn’t always realistic, and those with little experience might not know how to run a solvent business. For them, buying a franchise could be the best opportunity available.

Many franchises promise little risk — one oft-cited statistic is that 95 percent of franchises succeed, while 90 percent of independent businesses fail. But this statement rings false. In fact, the International Franchise Association (IFA) asked franchises to stop using this misleading statistic in 2005. There is a risk in starting any business, even a new franchise location.

But that doesn’t mean that franchises don’t succeed. According to the IFA, franchises operated 909,253 establishments, provided 11 million jobs and contributed $278.6 billion in payroll between 2001 and 2005, the last year for which information is available.

According to FranchiseMart/Biz1Brokers, a business that matches prospects with franchise opportunities, franchises work best for people with some start-up money, but little or no business experience. The franchisee can take advantage of the franchise’s proven business methodology, training and management support to learn how to run their business successfully. Franchises also offer greater exposure, thanks to national media campaigns, and cost sharing that can lower overhead. All in all, franchises offer greater security to the first-time business person, especially in today’s rough economy.

Would-be franchises should look for franchises that offer thorough training and continuous support. For example, United Franchise Group, which owns multiple franchises, including Signarama, Billboard Connection, Plan Ahead Events and Embroid Me, enrolls its franchisees in a mentorship program, so new franchisees can get advice from successful franchise owners. Proven marketing, a good success rate and a strong brand also indicate a franchise that’s worth an investment.

Of course, finding the right franchise is the first step towards success. Those interested in buying a franchise should look at businesses that suit their skills, personality traits and budget.

For more information, visit

Take Control: Help Keep Your Family Healthy This Season

<b>Take Control: Help Keep Your Family Healthy This Season</b>“></td>
<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Whether you work, travel or have children, it seems as though you’re constantly at risk for catching the latest bug going around. No matter how many precautions you take, those devious germs still find a way to make you sick.

That’s because germs don’t enter the body through our skin, but through susceptible areas like our eyes, nose, mouth and abrasions. When we touch our eyes or mouth with unclean hands or objects, germs are given an express lane entrance. When we’re in close proximity with others, such as at work, school or simple social interactions, we’re at risk.

But one Kentucky-based company has released a new product that has germaphobes everywhere rejoicing. Previously available only to professionals and a staple among police, firefighters and corrections and health care workers, MyClyns is the latest tool in the germ-defense arsenal. As a non-alcohol solution, MyClyns can be sprayed directly into the eyes, nose, and mouth — even minor cuts and abrasions — without any stinging or burning.

How does MyClyns work? Let’s say you’ve just been coughed upon or have a sniffling coworker sitting next to you. Simply take out your pen-sized MyClyns device, which contains about 50 sprays, and spray into your mouth, eyes or any other entry point. Independent laboratory tests show that the solution in MyClyns reduces more than 60 pathogens by 99.99 percent.

It’s no wonder, then, that MyClyns is quickly becoming the new “must have” for savvy business travelers, office managers and, of course, mothers.

MyClyns was developed by Union Springs Pharmaceuticals to give first responders, military and other health professionals another line of protection in the field, where they are often exposed to germs via third-party blood and bodily fluids. It is now available to consumers for the very first time.

The product, which retails for $9.99, can be purchased over the counter at most drug stores, supermarkets and other general

merchandise stores. Information about the product and its availability can be found at

So, germaphobes delight.

You can leave less to chance this winter.

Raising Awareness About Blood Disorders in Women

<b>Raising Awareness About Blood Disorders in Women</b>“></td>
<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Blood disorders can be dangerous and are of special concern to women because of the unique risks posed by pregnancy, oral contraceptives, menstrual bleeding and hormone-replacement therapy for menopause.

“The hormones estrogen and progesterone can put women at greater risk for blood clots,” says Dr. Nancy Berliner, president of the American Society of Hematology (ASH). “These hormones are used in birth control formulations and menopause therapies and are also at higher levels during pregnancy. Women are also at higher risk for anemia than men because of blood loss due to menstrual periods and pregnancy.”

ASH therefore urges women to be aware of the following blood disorders, in particular:

– Anemia occurs when the body does not have enough red blood cells to transport oxygen to organs and tissue. Pregnant women are especially at risk as they need more red blood cells to support their own bodies and their babies. Red blood cell production requires iron, and pregnant women often don’t have enough iron to be able to make the required increased numbers of red blood cells. Heavy menstruation can also result in iron-deficiency anemia. Symptoms of anemia include fatigue, dizziness and shortness of breath.

– Thrombophilia is a dangerous condition in which blood clots form in veins and arteries, blocking the flow of blood. This may cause swelling, pain or redness. Since pregnancy and hormonal medications increase the chance of clotting, women are especially at risk for the disorder.

– Von Willebrand disease is the most common bleeding disorder in women. It is an inherited condition in which blood cannot clot properly. Symptoms include bleeding gums, bruising easily or heavy and long menstrual periods (the most common symptom).

An awareness of the risk factors and symptoms of these disorders is critical, so treatment can be sought before any problems worsen. If you suspect that you have a blood condition, talk to your doctor immediately.

It is especially important for women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant to talk with their obstetricians about these conditions. “Two of the most common blood disorders during pregnancy are blood clots and anemia,” said Berliner. “Both blood conditions are treatable, and there are easy ways to help prevent them.”

For more information, visit

A Recipe for Longevity

<b>A Recipe for Longevity</b>“></td>
<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – When Oprah Winfrey recently visited me as part of a show devoted to longevity, she asked how I stay healthy and energetic at 86 years old. My secret: a fish-vegetarian diet that includes large quantities of fruits and vegetables, plus an hour of daily exercise.

Even though I am Chairman and Owner of Dole Food Company, I do most of my own grocery shopping, loading up on the 30 to 40 different kinds of fruit and vegetables I eat each week — just a few of which are listed on the chart.

This chart is the kind of information we publish through the Dole Nutrition Institute. To join the 2.5 million subscribers who enjoy the Dole Nutrition News, sign up at We report on the latest academic findings, particularly those coming out of our new North Carolina Research Campus.

This is the only campus in the world encompassing eight universities all working together for the benefit of health and longevity. We’ve gathered a comprehensive array of famous scientists and scientific equipment under one roof, including a two-story, 8-ton superconducting magnet that is the only one of its kind in the world.

We are studying all the compounds of every fruit and vegetable as well as the causes of disease in order to help feed the world with knowledge on how to lead healthier, more vital lives.


The Healthiest Foods on Earth

* Banana – Increases fat burning; lowers risk of colorectal and kidney cancer, leukemia; reduces asthma symptoms in children.

* Pineapple – Speeds post-surgery healing; promotes joint health; supports colon health.

* Blueberries – Restore antioxidant levels; reverse
age-related brain decline; prevent urinary tract infection.

* Spinach – Helps maintain mental sharpness; reduces the risk of cancers of the liver, ovaries, colon and prostate; top nutrient density.

* Red Bell Pepper – Reduces risk of lung, prostate, ovarian and cervical cancer; protects against sunburn; promotes heart health.

* Broccoli – Reduces diabetic damage; lowers risk of
prostate, bladder, colon, pancreatic, gastric and breast cancer; protects the brain in event of injury

* Apple – Supports immunity; fights lung and prostate cancer; lowers Alzheimer’s risk.

* Butternut Squash – Supports night vision; combats wrinkles; promotes heart health.

* Carrot – Antioxidants defend DNA; fights cataracts;
protects against some cancers.

* Cauliflower – Stimulates detoxification; suppresses breast cancer cell growth; defends against prostate cancer.

* Cabbage – Promotes healthy blood clotting; reduces risk of prostate, colon, breast and ovarian cancers; activates the body’s natural detoxification systems.

* Kale – Counters harmful estrogens that can feed cancer; protects eyes against sun damage and cataracts; increases bone density.

* Kiwi – Combats wrinkles; lowers blood clot risk and
reduces blood lipids; counters constipation.

* Mushrooms – Promote natural detoxification; reduce
the risk of colon and prostate cancer; lower blood pressure.

* Strawberries – Protect against Alzheimer’s; reduce “bad” cholesterol; suppress growth of colon, prostate and
oral cancer.

* Sweet Potato – Reduces stroke risk; lowers cancer risk; protects against blindness.

African-Americans at Higher Risk for Stroke

<b>African-Americans at Higher Risk for Stroke</b>“></td>
<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Each year, more than 780,000 Americans suffer a stroke. It is the third leading cause of death and a leading cause of long-term disability in the United States. African-Americans suffer more severe strokes than white Americans, and tend to have a higher rate of risk factors such as high blood pressure and smoking.

Many people do not know the symptoms or what to do when they witness someone having a stroke. The following information is provided to you by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS).

“For African-Americans, stroke is more common and more deadly — even in young and middle-aged adults — than for any other ethnic or racial group in the country. It is critical to recognize the symptoms of a stroke, call 9-1-1, and get to a hospital quickly,” said Salina Waddy, M.D., program director, Office of Minority Health and Research, NINDS. “The good news is that treatments are available that can save people’s lives and improve their chances for successful recovery.”

A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is interrupted or if bleeding occurs in or around the brain. Brain cells die when deprived of oxygen and nutrients provided by blood. Because a stroke injures the brain, if you are having a stroke, you may not realize what is happening. But to a bystander the signs of a stroke are distinct:

* Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg (especially on one side of the body)

* Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding speech

* Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes

* Sudden trouble walking, dizziness or loss of balance or coordination

* Sudden severe headache with no known cause

In treating a stroke, every minute counts. Treatments are available that greatly reduce the damage caused by a stroke. But you need to arrive at the hospital within 60 minutes after symptoms start in order to receive some treatments. Knowing the symptoms of a stroke, making note of the time of the first stroke symptom, and getting to the hospital quickly can help you act in time to save yourself — or someone you know — from serious long-term disability.

Making changes in your lifestyle can help prevent stroke. The NINDS, part of the National Institutes of Health, is dedicated to research and education on the causes, treatments and prevention of stroke. Risk factors include high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, family history of stroke, high cholesterol, and being overweight. Talk to your doctor and let him or her know about the concerns you may have about the risk factors of stroke. Find out your risks and take action.

More information on stroke, including how to reduce risk factors, is available in the NINDS materials. Order free materials by calling 1-800-352-9424 or by visiting

Guard Against Blood Clots While Traveling

<b>Guard Against Blood Clots While Traveling</b>“></td>
<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Air travel these days can be a challenge, with long security lines and flight delays. But many people may not know that traveling by plane can also increase your risk of developing a dangerous blood clot. The longer the trip, the more at risk you are for developing a clot.

What is a blood clot? When a blood vessel is injured, platelets and proteins in the blood stick together to form a plug (clot) over the site of the wound to prevent excessive bleeding. When blood flow is restricted, clots can sometimes form within the blood vessels, even if no injury exists. Prolonged immobility during long trips can lead to the formation of unnecessary blood clots in a major vein (commonly in the leg). This condition is called “deep-vein thrombosis” (DVT).

Most of the time, blood clots will naturally dissolve and go away on their own. But in some cases, a blood clot may travel from the leg into the lung, where it becomes lodged and prevents blood flow. This life-threatening condition is called a “pulmonary embolism” (PE) and should be treated immediately.

“It is estimated that more Americans die each year from pulmonary embolism than breast cancer, HIV disease and motor vehicle crashes combined,” said Nancy Berliner, M.D., president of the American Society of Hematology. “The good news is that blood clots are highly preventable if you recognize the risk factors and take simple steps to promote good circulation.”

Blood clot warning signs include sudden pain, redness or discoloration, skin that feels unusually warm and swelling of the leg, ankle or calf. Signs of PE include chest pain and shortness of breath. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should immediately contact a doctor.

There are simple steps people can take to help prevent blood clots from forming while flying. The American Society of Hematology (ASH) offers the following tips:

– Walk around the plane every few hours.

– Drink lots of fluids.

– Wear loose clothing.

– Avoid drinking alcohol before and during travel.

– Store carry-on luggage overhead to give yourself leg room.

Women taking oral contraceptives have a higher risk of developing clots, as do pregnant women, smokers, seniors and obese individuals. For more information, visit ASH’s Web site

Boomers Can Reduce Future Medical Costs

<b>Boomers Can Reduce Future Medical Costs</b>“></td>
<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – As the boomer generation ages, its members enter the healthcare system in increasing numbers and often incur large costs. By making small changes now, many future health problems and related expenses can be prevented. Blue Shield of California, a not-for-profit health plan with solutions for high-quality healthcare coverage at a reasonable price, offers these tips to help preserve your health and vitality well into the golden years:

– Stay active. Getting 30 minutes of physical activity just three days a week will help you lower blood pressure, maintain a healthy weight, prevent bone density loss, and keep your muscular and cardiovascular systems strong. Gardening, golfing and dancing can help you stay lively while enjoying yourself.

– Stay involved. Mental and physical fitness are equally important. Staying involved in your community, whether through friends or volunteer work, will help you achieve mental and emotional balance.

– Eat well. It’s never too late to adopt healthy habits. A diet based on whole grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes and other lean proteins will lessen your risk of developing heart disease, kidney disease, diabetes and other expensive-to-treat conditions.

– See your doctor before you feel sick. Frequent check-ups can help catch health concerns before they develop into chronic disease. Vision, dental and dermatology exams are important. In fact, skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U.S., according to Medline Plus – U.S. National Library of Medicine, and people over the age of 50 are at higher risk. Work with your doctor to arrange an ongoing check-up schedule.

– Stop smoking. Smoking increases your risk for cancer and cardiovascular and respiratory disease. It’s never too late to quit – your body begins recovering within minutes after you stop smoking, according to

– Be mindful of prescriptions. The average older person is taking more than four prescription drugs at once, plus two over-the-counter medications. When two or more drugs are mixed in the body, they may interact and produce uncomfortable or even dangerous side effects. Be proactive about having doctors or pharmacists check for possible drug interactions. Also try switching to generic drugs to save 30 percent or more on the average prescription.

For more healthy living tips and resources, visit Blue Shield online at