Posts categorized "Health." Feed

On getting old.

As many of you -- I have had lower back pain for years, and in my normal Beth way I have ignored it or (...don't tell anyone!) medicated it with NSAIDS off and on, and heat, and exercise, and stretching.  AND GOD DAMN IT, IT HURTS.

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Source - Healio 

NSAID use is contraindicated in gastric bypass patients as it can cause serious ulcers.  I started popping them like candy recently.  No. good.

ibuprofen

The back pain comes  in cycles and never really goes away.  It gets to the point where I cannot ignore it and I am currently in a Flare Of I Cannot Sit Down Or Sleep Or Lay Down And Nothing Feels Right EXCEPT getting on my knees in 'downward dog' position.  When I describe it to other people they chime in with "Yep.  I live this." 

I had my husband take me to the urgent care MD on the weekend for X-Rays.  They show disc degeneration. No surprise. I suppose after ignoring it -- plus a few years of massive obesity, plus four pregnancies, losing all of the weight plus eating haphazardly and vitamin-deficiencies, it shouldn't be a surprise.  

Hooray.

I was prescribed an anti-epileptic drug instead of a pain-medicine, at my request because I do not want to be sedated, and that I am epileptic.  

Although as the doctor was describing the medication's side effects to me, he explained that it might cause "sedation, dizziness," and I stated, "... that it isn't like I do anything important anyway, I'm not using heavy machinery as it is."  

I do not know that he got my seizure humor. 

I don't feel much relief from a few days of this added medication -- and I do not feel that it will be of help to the pain, but there are more options.  I think that I will need to use exercise somehow, because this, just isn't working.  

I can't sit.  I can't sleep.  

Osteoporosis

I have a broken ass.  I. am. old.


Video - YOUR CHAIR IS KILLING YOU. Get up! Non-exercise Activity Thermogenesis - the N.E.A.T. Energy of Life

HERE is one of my favorite speakers at the #YWM2014 event. HANDS, BUTT down.

  • Get up! Non-exercise Activity Thermogenesis - the N.E.A.T. Energy of Life
  • Streamed live on Sep 27, 2014

    Everything that we do throughout the day uses up our metabolic energy. Dr. Levine explains all the components of your daily energy expense, or N.E.A.T., and the science of how you can make this energy loss part of your strategy to improve health.

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Proof exercise works!

My weight - has not changed in six months - I am maintaining from 144-150.

But this, this is new.   I had zero definition in my body before.   

Thigh muscle

It's the little things, honestly.  A little change makes a huge difference - the fact that I can finally see change - makes the work WORTH IT.

 


Fat Letter on Halloween night - No Candy For You, Kid! Added video with interview -

A woman, Cheryl, in Fargo, North Dakota has decided to take Childhood Obesity into her own hands on Halloween, and pass out this letter --  What?!  

Yo, lady -  it's not our business.

Pass out toys.  Shut off your lights.  This letter makes you a tool.    Then again, I think this whole thing is a prank for radio station PR now that I have had a day to look at it.

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Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks


#YWM2013 Photoshow

 

BBGC Raises This Much For Walk From Obesity
Again, Because We Can.

 


Save. The. Date.

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Via OAC -
"The OAC thanks all those who attended and participated in YWM2013, making it an incredibly successful and motivating event. We extend our gratitude to this year's sponsors, exhibitors, speakers and all those who helped make the Convention possible. We are proud to announce the 2014 date and location and hope that you will mark your calendars to join us for YWM2014!"
  • September 25 - 28, 2014 - Orlando, Florida
Watch for my next posts for photos, recaps, and more.  Because.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."  - Margaret Mead


Do you buy brand-names or generic?

When you go to the pharmacy or big-box retailer do you choose brand-name or off-brand generic over the counter medications and pills even with the same active ingredients?

This kind of thing enthralls me.  I love you NPR. 

Why do people choose what they choose when given the option of the same product in different packaging?  

Some of you are SO. INSISTENT

"I MUST HAVE THIS BRAND!"  

"It is the ONLY ONE!"

I Want It Now GIF
Don't EVEN bring it to crazy-town with mayonnaise.   But we're taking about medication today.

My line of thinking (...when making that choice in the aisle) goes to:

  • Is is *exactly the same?*
  • Does it have the same efficacy?
  • Is the generic brand safe and effective?

When side-by-side store branded pills versus big brands aren't all that different, same active ingredients, similar labeling, the only thing that stands out to many of us is the pricing.  So why do you choose the more expensive product, if you do?

If I am being completely honest, I don't buy off-brand super inexpensive pills from big box retailers like Wal-Mart (...or a Dollar Store, shiver!) because quite frankly I am terrified at the potential of an eighty-eight cent price point and where THAT came from.  It's not that I am a brand snob, but just, no.  I read the packaging of every side-by-side product and if the ingredients match by percentage and you can see the source -- I do not mind paying less per pill.

I will admit for some things I have brandsnobbery  (...but even so much less lately and not really. I have even downgraded to generic huge tubs of coffee.  RIP Starbucks at home, entirely.  Thanks to blogging not being so, uh, lucrative, don't quit your dayjobs!)  But not for over the counter medications.  I bought approximately three boxes of generic gas medications, gut-fail medications and the like prior-to and during my trip to Portland last week because of desperation and it worked and kept me from ROTTING ON A PLANE THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

generic tylenol

NPR -

Why does anyone buy Bayer aspirin — or Tylenol, or Advil — when, almost always, there's a bottle of cheaper generic pills, with the same active ingredient, sitting right next to the brand-name pills?

Matthew Gentzkow, an economist at the University of Chicago's Booth school, recently tried to answer this question. Along with a few colleagues, Gentzkow set out to test a hypothesis: Maybe people buy the brand-name pills because they just don't know that the generic version is basically the same thing.

"We came up with what is probably the simplest idea you've ever heard of," Gentzkow says. "Let's just look and see if people who are well-informed about these things still pay extra to buy brands."

In other words, do doctors, nurses and pharmacists pay extra for Tylenol instead of acetaminophen, or buy Advil instead of ibuprofen?

Gentzkow and his colleagues looked at a huge dataset of over 66 million shopping trips and found that, "lo and behold, nurses, doctors and pharmacists are much less likely to buy brands than average consumers," Gentzkow says. (Their findings are written up here.)

Pharmacists, for example, bought generics 90 percent of the time, compared with about 70 percent of the time for the overall population. "In a world where everyone was as well-informed as pharmacist or nurse, the market share of the brands would be much, much smaller than it is today," Gentzkow says.

I asked several people who had a bottle of Bayer or Tylenol or Advil at home why they'd bought the brand name. One guy told me he didn't want his wife to think he was cheap. A woman told me Bayer reminded her of her grandmother. Another guy, a lawyer, said he just didn't want to spend the time to figure it out, and decided it was worth the extra couple bucks to buy the brand.

In general, we often buy brands when we lack information — when, like that lawyer, we decide it's easier to spend the extra money rather than try to figure out what's what.

Jesse Shapiro, one of the co-authors of the headache paper, told me he buys Heinz ketchup rather than the generic brand. He likes Heinz. He thinks it's better than the generic, but he's not sure. "I couldn't promise that, if you blindfolded me, I could tell them apart," he says.


Win An All-Expenses Paid Trip To #YWM2013 - JOIN US!

From the OAC -
YOU ARE INVITED to join us for the 2nd Annual Your Weight Matters National Convention, taking place this year in Phoenix, AZ, August 15 – 18 at the beautiful Arizona Grand Resort & Spa!

“Rise to the Challenge” with the Obesity Action Coalition (OAC) in Phoenix, where you can learn from the country’s leading experts and arm yourself with the knowledge to better manage your weight and your health!

The Your Weight Matters National Convention is the largest National meeting dedicated to providing evidence-based strategies for individuals impacted by excess weight and obesity, proudly brought to you OAC. As a National non-profit organization, the OAC is dedicated to helping the millions of Americans impacted by excess weight and obesity through education, advocacy and support.

The OAC’s National Convention is a 3-day educational event designed to bring together all individuals who struggle or are concerned with weight-related issues. The entire weekend is dedicated to presenting a comprehensive agenda, comprised of diverse topics that are designed to help any individual who has ever had a concern about their weight. We bring-in the country’s leading experts on weight and health and give you the RIGHT tools to be successful in your lifelong journey with weight.

Would you join us?   Please do.  

The OAC invites you to “Rise to the Challenge” and have the opportunity to win an all-expenses paid trip to the 2013 Convention in Phoenix.

Caesar demands - asks...

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  • If you refer 10 or more registrants to the 2013 Your Weight Matters National Convention, you will be entered-in to a Grand Prize drawing for an all-expenses paid trip to the Convention! The individual whose name is drawn will receive airfare, three-nights hotel stay and a Full Event Registration. Participants must recruit a minimum of 10 registrants to be eligible to enter the raffle for the Grand Prize.  

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  • All individuals who refer at least one registrant will be entered-in to a Runner-up drawing for a complimentary Full Convention Registration and a free OAC Membership (or renewal). You will receive one entry into the Runner-up drawing for each registrant who indicates that you referred them to Convention.  
  • GET ENTERED!  GET THERE.  We want to see you!  

(If you have not watched this - DO - embed the words inside your brain - that little dance - can you?  Would you?)

Have you already registered for #YWM2013?  (GO YOU!)  

  • If you HAVE?  
  • Please please please shoot the OAC a quick email to convention@obesityaction.org and provide the name of the individual that recruited you to attend.  Because, they get a shot at winning the trip - and that's super-helpful.  The more the better.  
  • Spread the love.  And see you at #YWM2013!  

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  • Related articles

Katie Jay Keynote Speaking at Southcoast Center for Weight Loss - Video

Katie Jay of www.nawls.com was the keynote speaker at an event at Southcoast Center for Weight Loss in Wareham, MA yesterday.

She is amazing.  

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Thank you, Katie.  

Here we are -

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150 patients returned to the Southcoast Center for Weight Loss Saturday for a reunion as the group marked its own milestone: 3,500 patients since Dr. Rayford Kruger launched the unit nine years ago.It is now the largest and busiest bariatric surgery program in New England, with three surgeons who perform about 650 procedures at Wareham's Tobey Hospital a year.

 


Do you obsess about your BODY or APPEARANCE? Your brain might be different.

Brain_wired

It's not uncommon for those of us who have lost massive amounts of weight with bariatric surgery to have major issues with body dysmorphic disorder or problems seeing ourselves the way we really look.

Some post weight loss patients suffer terrible with body dysmorphia -- some to a much lesser degree.
But, could brains actually be different in those who have BDD?

Continue reading "Do you obsess about your BODY or APPEARANCE? Your brain might be different." »


Obesity Help Announces Keynote Speaker for 2013 National Conference

Arya
This pleases MM.  Very much so.  I might have suggested Dr. Sharma.  Thanks, OH for taking the suggestions from the community.  We like change.
______________________________
Obesity Help -

ObesityHelp, the leading weight loss surgery support community, announced today that Dr. Arya Sharma, world-renowned thought leader on obesity prevention and management will be the ObesityHelp 2013 National Conference Keynote Speaker.” The two day conference takes place in Anaheim, California.

On Saturday, October 5, 2013, Dr. Sharma will present his keynote “Moving Beyond Diet and Exercise”. Dr. Sharma told ObesityHelp, “As anyone battling obesity is well aware, the age-old mantra “Eat-Less-Move-More” (ELMM) is about as effective for weight management as watching a comedy show is for treating depression.”

During his keynote presentation, Dr. Sharma will discuss the many complex causes of weight gain and the many barriers to weight management including, time, stress, genetics, metabolism, sleep, trauma, mental health, medications and many others, to reveal why ELMM approaches to obesity management are so ineffective.

For agenda updates or to purchase tickets visit http://events.obesityhelp.com.


Medication malabsorption?

I do not think I am absorbing my anti-epilepsy medication very well.   I know - surprise, surprise.

Shocked-will-smith

Keppra-12691_3

I take two medications -

Topamax

  • Topamax 200 mgs
  • Levetiracetam 2000 mgs
  • Both in divided doses

My blood test results - suck -

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My medication dosages are higher than the "therapeutic levels" suggested above - and my blood lab results don't seem to fit.  

While my grand mal seizures are controlled (thank you Keppra?) I am having multiple complex partial seizures in clusters each week.  My family says they are increased, I can't tell the difference because they happen regardless of my awareness level.

(Side note:  I am also still pushing along toward brain surgery for the removal of the area of the brain that is the trigger area for the seizures, however the neuro team has suggested that it's a very large section - larger than anticipated in earlier scans - and less likely to be a cure... I still have testing to visualize and narrow it down... another post.)

  • My point in posting my medication blood levels was that maybe someone out there has knowledge of this -- epilepsy AND gastric bypass AND medication levels or alternative dosing?  

While I am aware that is NORMAL to have absorption issues post gastric bypass - I guess this is some proof - that medication just DOESN'T always work entirely.

UIC College Of Pharmacy -

The Roux-en-Y gastric bypass is most commonly performed in the United States and produces a more profound and sustained weight loss than the other two methods.2,5 This procedure uses a combined restrictive and malabsorptive approach to induce weight loss. During this procedure, a 30- to 60-mL portion of the stomach is sectioned off in an effort to limit food intake. The small intestine is then cut from the base of the stomach, and the lower intestine is connected to the pouch at the top of the stomach. The narrow opening to the small intestine slows the emptying of the stomach and produces a sensation of early satiety.By circumventing the lower portion of the stomach (90% to 95%) and much of the small intestine (the entire duodenum and part of the proximal jejunum), the surface area for absorption is greatly decreased and malabsorption can occur.2

Drug absorption and bariatric surgery

The mechanism of altered drug absorption depends partly on the type of procedure done-restrictive or malabsorptive. In general, drug absorption is affected by drug disintegration and solubility and the surface area available for absorption, all of which can be affected by restrictive procedures. 5,7 Disintegration of the dosage form is the first step needed for drug absorption. The smaller volume of the stomach with restrictive procedures may prevent adequate tablet or capsule disintegration due to reduced gastric mixing.Solubility of a drug is dependent on pH. Drugs that are more soluble at a lower pH are absorbed in the stomach, while those that are soluble in more basic environments are absorbed in the small intestine. Changes in the stomach volume after bariatric surgery result in a decrease in gastric acid production and a higher pH compared with the stomach as a whole. The change in pH may cause a decrease in the absorption of medications that rely on an acidic pH for solubility or absorption. A reduction in the surface area of the stomach may further decrease drug bioavailability. These changes may be especially important for drugs that are slowly absorbed, such as sustained-release formulations. Use of liquid formulations or chewing or crushing solid dosage forms (if appropriate) may help overcome some of these factors.

Malabsorptive procedures bypass much of the small intestine.7 This technique not only decreases intestinal length but also limits mucosal exposure of drugs and alters intestinal transit time. Mixing of highly lipid soluble drugs with bile acids may be reduced, with a loss of enterohepatic recirculation and decreased absorption.

In addition to drug absorption, drug distribution can also be affected following bariatric surgery.Obesity-related factors that can influence drug distribution include increased blood volume, cardiac output, lean body mass, organ size, and adipose mass. After bariatric surgery, these factors are expected to change and, therefore, may necessitate drug dosing adjustments.


And what then?

“In case you never get a second chance: don't be afraid!"

"And what if you do get a second chance?" "You take it!” 

― C. JoyBell C.

 

I am wondering if someone out there is holding a voo doo doll of me and hastily stabbing pins everywhere but in me. Quit it.  You're missing the target.  

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We are wrapping up the end of March over here with the third (..fourth?) major life-changing event of 2013.  

I thought that if I did not blog about the first (...as much as I have wanted to, I was told no and I have been SCREAMING on the inside!  Still.  AM.  :x) or second (more?) that these things would not occur in threes or more but they do.  I still haven't written, much at all actually.  

Because stop.

Currently - my father is sitting in the Beth Israel Deaconness Medical Center in Boston, MA awaiting a Triple Bypass Heart Surgery on Friday morning after two RED FLAG WARNINGS that landed him in the ER.  

11 years ago, he had a stent placed after a mild heart-attack.  These warnings (DO NOT IGNORE YOUR HEART, PEOPLE!) happened just after he lost his job and likely stress was of no help.

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What is a Triple Bypass?  

When one of the heart's arteries gets blocked and a person has a heart attack, one common procedure is to perform heart surgery and sew in a new piece of blood vessel to bridge over (bypass) the blockage. In many cases, the surgeon will fix not only the immediate problem, but also other arteries on the heart that are starting to look blocked. If the surgeon repairs three of the arteries, it is called a triple bypass. If four arteries are repaired, it's a quadruple bypass.

The positives?  

He's losing weight rapidly while in the hospital.  He had lost weight in a medically-supervised plan with his physician's office just prior to this event, but now he's busted into the 200's.

He's off the nicotine, and mentioned that the nurses kept trying to slip him nicotine-patches and he doesn't crave them.  It's been nearly a week, smoke-free!  This is a huge deal.  Hopefully after surgery and rehab he can maintain living smoke-free, he's done it before.

He can rock this.

He appreciates your well-wishes.

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Panera Bread Hidden Menu - Or - This is how to get a MM to GO to Panera Bread?

I was just fumbling through my morning routine of empty dishwasher, make coffee, listen to morning radio.  I heard this story on NPR about Secret Menus and I stopped and thought, "Well, there's today's blog entry."

BECAUSE LOOK WHAT PANERA DID AND I WOULD HAVE NEVER KNOWN CAUSE IT WAS A BIG OLE SECRET!

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Panera (Bread, which I avoid... because it is a BREAD. STORE. CLOAKED. AS. A. SIT. DOWN. RESTAURANT.) now offers on the sly, teh foods that I can enjoy, and that many of you can also enjoy, but we have to play the secret game to get them.

NPR -

One thing you won't see on Panera Bread's secret menu? Bread.

As Scott Davis, who oversees menus for Panera Bread, explains, "This is probably the most extreme anti-kind of Panera diet you can have, right? It doesn't include bread and flour and that sort of stuff."

Davis says that the company had been missing out on a whole group of diners: diabetics and people who were cutting carbs or avoiding gluten. This menu lets the company tap into that growing health-conscious market.

"If someone never considered Panera before because the name 'bread' is in it ... this is a way of opening that door," says Davis.

So at its 1,800 stores around the country, Panera trained its employees to either pull out the secret menu card or scan a code that'll put the menu on a customer's mobile device.

But only if someone asks for it.

Here's my rant about this -- It's A Schtick, It's A Marketing Ploy -- to get foot traffic into the restaurants to "find all the foods" that are on the "hidden" but not-so-hidden-because-we-promoted-them-on-our-website-menus.  

 

The restaurant also desires that while you are there, you will add-on a purchase of a simple-carb from the bakery-porn-case of scones, souffles, muffins, cookies, bagels, or loaves of bread?

Shortbread cookies are my nememis.  Thank you for noticing.  Let's see if I can get through there without looking.  > - <


Ricki Lake - Bargain shopping for plastic surgery - Addicted To Plastic Surgery

Plastic surgery gone awry - to save a buck.  By the way - this isn't just something that happens with cheap plastics - more on THAT later - I promise.  


Dieting can lead to food withdrawal and depression

I hate it when people abuse poor, poor mice.

Fat mouse
Dieting can lead to food withdrawal and depression

Over a six-week period, the team of experts fed one group of mice a low-fat diet, while feeding a second group of mice a high-fat diet, so that they could analyze how the different foods impacted the behavior of the animals.

Eleven percent of the calories in the low-fat diet consisted of fat, and 58% in the high-fat diet. This caused the high-fat group an 11% increase in their waist size, but they were not yet considered obese.

Fulton and her team then examined the association between rewarding mice with food and their behavioral and emotional outcomes by using a variety of methods that have been scientifically proven. The brains of the animals were also analyzed so that the experts could observe any changes that had occurred.

The researchers found that the high-fat group showed signs of anxiety, for example, they tried to avoid areas that were open. According to the authors, the animals' experiences physically changed their brains

Dopamine was one of the molecules in the brain that was observed. It allows the brain to reward people with good feelings, which in turn, motivates individuals to acquire particular behaviors.

Dopamine is a chemical which works the same in humans as it does in mice and other animals. CREB is a molecule which regulates the activation of genes that play a part in the functioning of human brains, including the ones that cause dopamine to be produced. It also contributes to the forming of memories.

Study -  Adaptations in brain reward circuitry underlie palatable food cravings and anxiety induced by high-fat diet withdrawal


How much water should I drink? #adultdiapersarehawt

How much water should I drink?  

Aren't we all supposed to have eight glasses of water a day?  

Or is it one ounce per pound of body weight?  HELP!  

I see water challenges on social media sites constantly -- I never know what their purpose was for -- considering they look a lot like this:  "EVERYONE STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING AND TAKE A DRINK OF WATER ---------- GOOD --------- NOW PEE!"  

I never caught on.  

Stupidwater

Huffington Post -

How much water am I meant to drink? Is it really eight cups a day?

The notion that we must all drink eight cups of water per day to improve our health is an old one, but it isn't exactly accurate. Although the suggestion dates back to at least the 1940s, the latest to carry the mantel are, unsurprisingly, bottled water companies.

Writing in the medical journal BMJ, Glasgow doctor Margaret McCartney pointed out that much of the current recommendations come from events sponsored by Danonewhich owns bottled water lines Evian, Volvic and Badoit.

The "8x8 advice" may also endure because, cost aside, it's harmless. And being over-hydrated sure beats dehydration, which can cause headaches, light-headedness, fatigue and other, more serious complaints. Water is essential for proper digestion, kidney function and brain function and is required by every cell of the body. But that doesn't mean we need to sip on it all day.

There may be another reason we've stuck with an inaccurate eight cups -- and that answer isn't nearly so straight forward: the right amount of water to drink is the amount that quenches your thirst.

"When you think about the way that the body handles water, you pee it out. The body regulates water very carefully and doesn't allow it to accumulate. Extra water is immediately excreted," says Dr. Stanley Goldfarb, a professor of medicine at University of Pennsylvania and an expert on fluid management.

What's more, our bodies tell us when we require water -- that's what the thirst mechanism does. Thirst doesn't mean you've reached a dire level of dehydration either. Explains Goldfarb: "When you get thirsty, the deficit of water in your body is trivial -- it's a very sensitive gauge. It might be only a one percent reduction in your overall water. And it just requires drinking some fluid."

Or food: about 20 percent of the fluid we receive each day comes from water-heavy foods like fruits and vegetables.

There is, however, one exception: for those who suffer from kidney stones -- masses of crystals that form in the urine and pass painfully through the urethra -- staying overly hydrated is very beneficial, as it dilutes the concentration of material that forms into the clumps.

The typical U.S. adult downs about four cups a day, which is shy of the Institute of Medicine's recommendation to drink about three liters of fluid for men and 2.2 liters for women. But others disagree with this assessment -- if that's the amount of water a person naturally drinks in response to thirst, that's fine. But there is no benefit to forcing extra water.

Just to reiterate, we're talking exclusively about over-hydration. Beware dehydrating factors like exercise, salty foods and hot weather, and be sure to replace the fluid you've lost. A surefire way to tell if you've replaced your water sufficiently? It's all in your urine. If you're producing pale yellow pee, you've reached a hydrated status.

You can keep drinking, but why?

 


Being slightly overweight may actually help you live longer.

My people will live forever.   -MM

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A new study says being slightly overweight may actually help you live longer.  Researchers looked at data on nearly three million adults around the world.  They compared the body mass index, a measurement of weight in relation to height, to the risk of death.  The study found people with a little extra weight had a six percent lower risk of dying compared to people considered "normal" weight.  However, it's not an excuse to pack on the pounds.

Obese people had more than triple the risk of dying, according to the study.

The research looked at only death, not chronic medical conditions.

The study is published in the latest issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association

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30 Days

meltingmama has logged in for 30 days in a row!

That's a miracle.

I never follow through with a food journal  (we know this through past history) thirty days is a big freaking deal.

As much as I bitch, moan and complain about it, food journaling works.  

Journaling shows me immediately where the concern areas are -- and Where I Am Screwing Up.  It's glaringly, painfully obvious what needs to change and why I don't lose weight when I think I should.  Because I am Too Busy Grazing Bites Of Crackers - Cheese - Cheese - and How About That Cheese?  As soon as I make myself accountable to writing it down, at least 75-95% of the time - I do it so much better.  

I screw up constantly. 

I break rules.

I am a huge mess.

But. 

I can do this.

I can do it
I have gone from 182 lbs to 165 lbs since my last OMGFREAKOUT weigh in.  It can work.  I'm not dieting.  I'm not really trying.  I am just checking in everyday and writing down my intake.

Join me if you want?