Thoughts and Advice
Bran is good for you because it has lots of fibre. Not only will it make your bowel movements more regular, but eating bran regularly will also lower your cholesterol. You can just eat bran straight, by spooning it into your mouth, drinking some water and chewing it to get it down, or you can eat bran sprinkled on your cereal or salad. Also you can eat bran as bran muffins.
One problem with most bran muffin recipes is that they call for lots of butter or other oils, and for sugar. Here, however, is a recipe that is pretty healthy:
OAT BRAN MUFFIN RECIPE:
2 1/2 cups Quaker Oat Bran Hot Cereal, uncooked
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup non-fat milk
2 egg whites, slightly beaten
1/2 cup Clover honey
2 tabelspoons Canola oil
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray muffin pan with no-stick cooking spray. Combine dry ingredients. Mix milk, egg whites, honey and oil together. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix in until the dry ingredients are moistened. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Bake 15 minutes or until golden brown. Do not over-bake; this way muffins are moist. Makes 6 large or 12 small muffins. (you can add forzen blueberries or a mashed ripe banana to the batter for more flavor.)
Every fall our office gives out the current year's flu shot. People over 50, children 6 months to 18 years of age, people with chronic medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, cancer, or any lung, kidney or heart disease, need to get the flu shot every year. Also, medical science authorities have pretty well agreed that the flu shot will benefit just about anybody. Click here for general information from the CDC about the flu shot. Again, many pharmacies are also able to give out flu shots (and pneumonia shots), so if that's more convenient for you, get it there.
Travel vaccines and meds:
It's summer and all those vacation trips are here. Make sure you check with the Center for Disease Control Travel Website (click here) to see what vaccines and special preparations you need. With the exception of Yellow Fever, Dr. Fong can provide most travel vaccines.
Shingles vaccines are recommended for persons over 60 with no immune system deficiencies. Shingles can be a very painful disease and older people are more prone to them. You can get yours at the many pharmacies that are giving them out.
Recently it has been in the news that perhaps the FDA should consider regulating the amount of salt and sodium food manufacturers put into processed foods, and how many lives this could save per year. This brings into focus the perniciousness of salt and sodium in general, salt being merely a form of sodium, sodium chloride. Sodium raises blood pressure, which in turn hardens arteries and places extra loads on the heart and kidneys, causing them to weaken and eventually fail. Banish your salt shaker to the garage and bring out only at dinner guests' request. Avoid salty foods. Avoid MSG, i.e. monosodium glutamate, which is a form of sodium. Avoid preservatives as they are also forms of sodium, having names like sodium benzoate. By the way, the packaged salads that you think are so healthy actually have preservatives in them. So read the labels when you shop: try to get the sodium in mgs. to be less than the number of calories. That's a quick and easy way of ensuring that you eat low sodium. Natural foods, like fresh unprocessed meat, fish, grain, fruits, vegetables and the like, don't have "mgs. of sodium" labels, that's because Mother Nature is good: all natural foods, even seafoods, are very, very low sodium.