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Lifetime risks, loss of life expectancy, and health care expenditures for 19 types of cancer in Taiwan

Video abstract presented by Tzu-Yi Wu.

Views: 9

Tzu-Yi Wu,1 Chia-Hua Chung,2 Chia-Ni Lin,3 Jing-Shiang Hwang,2 Jung-Der Wang3,4

1Institute of Economics, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan; 2Institute of Statistical Science, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan; 3Department of Public Health, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan; 4Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, National Cheng Kung University Hospital, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan

Background: The mortality rates for different cancers are no longer an efficient tool for making national policy. The purpose of this study were to quantify the lifetime risks, life expectancies (LEs) after diagnosis, expected years of life lost (EYLL), and lifetime health care expenditures for 19 major cancers in Taiwan.
Methods: A total of 831,314 patients with 19 pathologically proven cancers were abstracted from the Taiwan Cancer Registry from 1998 to 2012. They were linked to the National Mortality Registry (1998–2014) and National Health Insurance reimbursement database (1998–2013) for survival and health care costs. We estimated the cumulative incidence rate for ages 0–79 years and the lifetime survival function for patients with different cancer sites. The EYLL was calculated by subtracting the LE of each cancer cohort from that of the age- and sex-matched referents simulated from national life tables. The estimated lifetime cost was calculated by adding up the product of survival probability and mean cost at the corresponding duration-to-date after adjustment for the inflation to the year of 2013.
Results: There were 5 cancers with a lifetime risk exceeding 4%: colorectal, liver, lung, and prostate in males, and breast and colorectal in females. Cancers with EYLL of 10 years were: esophageal, intrahepatic bile ducts, liver, pancreas, oral, nasopharyngeal, leukemia, lung, and gallbladder, extrahepatic bile ducts and biliary tract in males, and intrahepatic bile ducts, pancreas, nasopharyngeal, lung, esophageal, leukemia, liver, gallbladder, extrahepatic bile ducts and biliary tract, ovary, and stomach in females. Cancers with lifetime health care expenditures exceeding US$50,000 to the National Health Insurance were as follows: leukemia, kidney, testis, renal pelvis and ureter in males, and renal pelvis and ureter, leukemia, breast, urinary bladder, kidney, ovary, and nasopharyngeal in females. All these impacts should be considered in health policy decisions.
Conclusion: The impacts of cancer in Taiwan are very large. Future studies must consider both quality of life and the entire impact from societal perspectives.

Keywords: health impacts, incidence rate, expected years of life lost, cancer prevention

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Insurance startup leaks sensitive customer health data


Another day, another data leak. (Image: file photo)

A software startup that provides independent insurance brokers with customer management software has exposed highly sensitive information on thousands of insurance policy holders.

A vast cache of data was stored on Amazon S3 storage bucket by AgentRun, a Chicago, Ill.-based company founded in 2012 by Andrew Lech, a former independent insurance broker.

The bucket stored thousands of files of broker clients using the company’s platform, including highly sensitive personal information like insurance policy documents, health and medical information, and some financial data.

The bucket wasn’t protected with a password and was accessible by anyone.

Andrew Lech, the company’s founder, admitted the breach in an email.

“We were migrating to this bucket during an application upgrade and during the migration the permissions on the bucket were erroneously flipped,” he said.

Read more: Password manager maker Keeper hit by another security snafu | Accenture left a huge trove of highly sensitive data on exposed servers | Unsecured server exposed thousands of FedEx customer records | Data firm leaks 48 million user profiles it scraped from Facebook, LinkedIn, others | Thousands of sensitive mercenary resumes exposed

The bucket was closed within an hour of disclosure.

The data included detailed insurance policy documents containing names, postal addresses, dates of birth, and phone numbers. In some cases there were also documents revealing an income range, ethnicity, and marital status.

Many of the documents were scans of people’s identification documents, including Social Security cards and numbers, Medicare cards, and other documents, such as driver licenses, and armed forces and voter identification cards

Some policy holders also enclosed blank bank checks.

The data also included sensitive health information, including a person’s prescriptions, dosages, and costs — which can identify medical conditions.

Insurance companies found in the data included Cigna, TransAmerica, SafeCo Insurance, Schneider Insurance, Manhattan Life, and Everest — to name a few.

Read more: NSA leak exposes Red Disk, the Army’s failed intelligence system | Researchers say a breathalyzer has flaws, casting doubt on countless convictions | NSA’s Ragtime program targets Americans, leaked files show | Leaked: TSA documents reveal New York airport’s wave of security lapses | Millions of Verizon records exposed in security lapse

According to the startup’s website, the company claims its service is “secure” and uses the “latest encryption standards” to protect sensitive data, but we found no evidence that any encryption was used on the data stored in the bucket.

Lech said that the company will notify customers and all individuals, whose data was breached.

“We will also be notifying the proper authorities,” he said, per state breach notification laws.

Contact me securely

Zack Whittaker can be reached securely on Signal and WhatsApp at 646-755–8849, and his PGP fingerprint for email is: 4D0E 92F2 E36A EC51 DAAE 5D97 CB8C 15FA EB6C EEA5.

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Report: Clean fuels promote jobs, good health | Crain’s Detroit …

Jobs, taxes paid, a cleaner environment and improved public health are several of the benefits to Michigan from the expanding number of clean-fuel vehicles, according to a new report sponsored by Clean Fuels Michigan, a Lansing-based group of 30 companies associated with the energy, automotive and environmental markets.

The 35-page report prepared by Lansing-based Public Sector Consultants says Michigan’s 29,000 jobs directly tied to clean-fuel vehicles could grow substantially in the next decade as the number of those vehicles increases. The report estimates the number of indirect jobs supported by the clean-fuel industry now number 69,000.

Clean-fuel vehicles include electric and hybrid vehicles, as well as those powered by propane, natural gas, and hydrogen fuel cells.

The clean-fuel vehicles sector contributes $18.8 billion to Michigan’s economy each year and generates over $700 million in state and local taxes when direct, indirect and induced effects are included, the report says.

A focus for the group is for Michigan to benefit from expected rapid growth in clean-fuels vehicles.

“We want that growth rate to be here. There is an opportunity and a threat,” said Jeff Guilfoyle, vice president and lead author of the report with Public Sector Consultants.

Mike Alaimo, executive director of Clean Fuels Michigan, said lawmakers in the Michigan Legislature and regulators at the state Public Service Commission are “doing great work to lay a foundation for the state for the onslaught of clean mobility.”

But Alaimo said more work needs to be done to develop the infrastructure for clean vehicles over the next several years and to educate the public on the benefits of clean vehicles.

The report also concluded that reducing air pollution will improve Michiganders’ health and cut drastically public and private health expenditures. Air pollution can exacerbate health problems, triggering asthma attacks and worsening cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes.

For example, a recently American Lung Association study found that having the majority of a state’s vehicle fleet be emissions-free by 2050 could reduce vehicle-related air pollution health costs by 88 percent. The improvement in air quality Michigan would likely see from a transition to clean-fuel vehicles would lead to Medicaid cost savings, the report said.

“There have been large studies” that prove public health can be improved with less air and water pollution, said Guilfoyle. “I dont know if they (policymakers) are there yet (on connecting clean energy to health benefits). They are probably unaware now.”

Guilfoyle said the economic benefits to clean fuels are what gets the most attention, but the health and environmental benefits are just as important.

“I have not seen a ton of issues where the impetus was supporting legislation to connect environment to health,” Alaimo said. “We are hoping this is the issue. There is a strong economic rationale. We know policymakers also care about health care costs like they do roads.”

Michigan is a leader in the clean-fuels field, Guilfoyle said. From 2011 to 2016, the state had more than 3,000 clean technology patents.

The report found that Michigan also leads research on a per-capita basis, submitting 32 patents per 100,000 residents, more than double the next highest state.

In Michigan, 82 percent of registered vehicles are gasoline-powered and 6 percent are diesel-powered. An additional 11 percent are flexible fuel vehicles, which can run on combination of gasoline and ethanol.

Vince Carioti, director of E-Mobility North America for Phoenix Contact, a German maker of vehicle electrical components that recently opened an office in Michigan, said that by 2040 some 35 percent of new vehicles purchased globally will be electric-powered. In Michigan, 124,000 vehicles are electric or hybrid vehicles, according to the Michigan Department of Transportation.

Greentech Media Research projects 11.4 million electric vehicles on the road in the U.S. in 2025.

“Access to vehicle charging is important. We need more,” Carioti said.

Rob Bacyinski, program manager of natural gas vehicle business development for DTE Energy Co. and board chair of Clean Fuels Michigan, said utilities will play a major role in the mobile clean fuels market in the coming years.

“DTE Energy is working to ensure plug-in electric and natural gas vehicles are integrated in a manner that ensures safe and reliable operation of the grid,” Bacyinski said in a statement. “We believe that clean fuels and electric vehicles will bring added benefits to not only the energy grid, but customers and the public at large.”

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Good habits for good health

Health Corner

Good habits for good health

May 25, 2018 07:43 AM
The Week Bureau

Good habits for good health

Little things you can do to ensure you are in top shape.

You don’t have to go vegan, swear off all the things you love and occasionally indulge in, like chocolates and wine, or make drastic lifestyle changes to enjoy a good, healthy life. There are some really basic and simple things that, done over time, can ensure you stay active and in good shape, both physically and mentally. Here are some of our favorites. 

Drink more water
We know you have heard this time and again but it’s so important that we can’t stress on it enough. Being dehydrated can negatively impact everything from your mental focus to energy and metabolism. One trick you can use to stay hydrated is to keep a one-liter water bottle on your work desk and aim to get at least two refills a day. This is a much easier way of tracking water consumption as well than having a glass of water here and there and hoping you are getting enough. From acne to period cramps, there are a lot of little problems that having enough water in your system can cure. 

Dry brush your skin
Dry skin brushing is an incredible daily health-boosting practice to work into either your morning or evening routine. Not only does it smooth, exfoliate and detoxify your skin, but also supports the lymphatic system, increases energy, reduces cellulite and improves blood flow. All you need is a brush with firm bristles and a handle. Start at your feet and work upwards. Brush towards your heart with long, smooth strokes. Take your time and invest about five minutes into this practice. We guarantee you will feel super rejuvenated when you are done. 

Detox your home
We are exposed to many toxins on a daily basis and while we might have no control over many of them, we can control the toxins that come into our own homes. Start small to detoxify your home and work your way up. Some easy first steps are to leave the windows open as much as possible for better ventilation and change your sheets and cushion covers regularly. Replace beauty products with less toxic and chemical-free options. Use glass instead of plastic where possible and filter your water. Another easy and super efficient way to eliminate toxins is to switch from your standard household cleaners to environmental friendly versions. 

Wash and floss 
Two simple but highly underrated hygiene practices are apparently washing hands and flossing teeth. Wash your hands every chance you get and keep them away from your face. This simple habit is single handedly the best way to avoid picking up those nasty viruses going around. And don’t forget to floss your teeth. Keeping your gums clean will not only help you avoid bad breath, but also helps you avoid heart disease. The American Dental Association recommends you floss at least once per day to remove plaque that isn’t eliminated by brushing.

Studies have shown that meditation – even if it is just 10 minutes a day – is good for stress reduction, better sleep, lower blood pressure, improved immunity, and improved cardiovascular function. Scientific studies have shown that those who meditate enhance their slow wave sleep pattern, which can help fight insomnia. Also, studies have shown that long term practice of meditation can lead to physical changes in the brain that help alter the perception of pain. Apparently, those who meditate will experience lower pain sensitivity. We say it’s worth a try. Start with 10 minutes a day and work your way up to 20 to 30 minutes. 

Sit up straight 
Having good posture can prevent aches and pain and it can also reduce stress on your ligaments. Try leaving yourself a note to sit up straight, until it becomes an unconscious habit. You could also set regular reminders in the form of alarms to straighten your posture. Bring your neck and hips into a neutral position, then pull your shoulder blades back and stick your chest out. A good posture helps every muscle work in an optimal way and thus reduces pressure on your joints. In the long run, you will reduce your risk of getting backaches and in the short run, you will feel more confident, energized while also being able to breathe better.

Reduce stress 
Stress can have an enormous negative impact on health and addressing it is something many people neglect to do. Instead of turning to unhealthy outlets, master super-quick stress reducers like deep breathing and sipping on green tea. Other easy solutions: smelling lavender, doing a few quick stretches, or taking a stroll around your neighborhood. Also, putting away your smartphone might seem like quite a challenge but you will be surprised how being connected 24/7 can have negative side effects on your memory, creativity, and productivity and also lead to stress. Disconnect for at least one hour every day and give your brain a well-deserved break to recharge and rejuvenate. 

Walk 10,000 steps daily
Forget about counting calories, and achieve life-long good health by walking 10,000 steps each day. Why is this an important health habit, you ask? The thing is walking can not only help with weight loss, but it can also help in improving cholesterol, blood pressure, as well as aid in tackling so many other health-related areas. And it’s fairly simple too. All you have to do is make it a health habit to walk at least 10,000 steps a day. Also, in the age of smartphones, tracking your steps is so easy. Just download a pedometer app for your smartphone. Start small and work your way up, but always make sure you hit or exceed that 10,000 steps goal.

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Local cyclists ride for fun and good health

Shared interests in cycling, fishing and exercise keep two school-connected men moving in the name of good health.

Pratt County Veteran’s Memorial Lake is a favorite stopping point for two local cyclists. In fact, it’s not uncommon to see them off their bikes, peering into the water. But not to worry, they aren’t up to anything dangerous, it’s just Prattans Clinton Skaggs and Steve Blankenship out having a good time and getting some exercise.
This local veterinarian and high school principal have found common ground through a shared love of cycling and fishing.
The two first met when Skaggs began serving on the USD 382 School Board in 2007. Blankenship was principal then, as he is now, of Pratt High School. The two soon began cycling and fishing together and still enjoy doing so, although Skaggs no longer serves on the school board. The two have been cycling companions for the past 10 or so years.
Clinton Skaggs began riding around 1990, after he finished veterinary school at K-State and moved to Pratt. After ACL replacement surgery in 1984 his doctor told him that he could either cycle or swim.
“That’s the biggest thing that got me started. I wasn’t much of a swimmer,” he said.
Skaggs bought his first bike, a hybrid, from Bicycle Pedaler after hearing an ad on the radio for the Wichita bike shop.
“And it’s been all downhill from there,” he said.
The veterinarian has several reasons why he keeps riding, some 28 years later.
 ““I keep riding because I feel like it helps my knees,” he said. “I do it for my health, for my heart. I enjoy it. I feel like it’s a fun form of exercise.”
Skaggs has ridden in various organized rides across the state over the years, with his earliest being the Gyp Hills Experience out of Medicine Lodge in the early 90s.
“The recent Open Range Gravel Race, leaving out of Pratt was one of the funnest rides I’ve ever done,” he said. “The gravel alone was a challenge … and a work out.”
He counts the single-day Tornado Alley ride as his longest.
“It was 110 miles. You started at Joplin and then rode to Arkansas, Oklahoma, and the corner Kansas,” he said.
Skaggs typically begins riding each year around the onset of daylight savings time and continues into September until his work schedule starts getting busy. He said his riding is sporadic and depends upon how busy he is with work and other commitments.
Pratt High School Principal Steve Blankenship said that he has been riding his whole life.
“I probably got really heavy into riding 22 or 23 years ago when I lived in California,” he said.
Back then, he bought a mountain bike with a full-suspension to cut down on flat tires he was having due to of- road riding.
“I did crash one time going down a mountain—actually on my first ride on that full-suspension bike,” he said. “The mountain was just outside my backdoor. There was a dip at the bottom of a hill that sent me sailing. lt was a good thing I had my helmet on because it split the helmet in two.”
That accident resulted in some serious road rash and a trip to the local emergency room.
Like the veterinarian, the high school principal rides for health reasons.
 “I just try to go out and ride recreationally and stay healthy. Now that I’m over 50 I don’t want to have a knee replacement,” Blankenship said. “I used to play a lot of basketball but that made my knees hurt, my back hurt.”
He said that cycling impacts the knees much less than playing basketball does.
Blankenship, who has probably given advice to more than a few students over the years, offers this guidance to those thinking about taking up the sport of cycling.
“Make sure you wear the right equipment and have a bike that fits you right,” he said. “Do the riding you want to do. Do whatever’s fun for you. If it’s no fun for you, you’re going to quit.”
It’s very evident, should one encounter the pair on the county lake road or anywhere near, that they’re enjoying the miles they pedal together.

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Healthy Living: Stress and the Balloon Animal, with Mike Bork – Fairbanks Daily News

Join us in becoming informed about up-to-the-minute medical knowledge on human health (presented so that it can be understood without being doctors ourselves!) with local experts. Tonight: Mike Bork, Stress Management Consultant and Coach

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St. Tammany Healthy Living for May 23, 2018

LAKEVIEW REGIONAL VOLUNTEERS: Kathy Gibbs was installed as president of the Lakeview Regional Medical Center Volunteer Auxiliary during the group’s recent appreciation luncheon at Benedict’s Plantation in Mandeville. The other new auxiliary officers are Antionette Weatherly, vice president; Catherine Rish, treasurer; Viola Dickson, secretary; and Jerry Lambert, past president. The auxiliary also honored its 76 volunteers, who have worked a total of 21,400 hours. Longevity recognition went to:

  • 20 years: Leandra Howze, Dianna King and Elwood Trahan
  • 15 years: Carol Ehrhardt, Becky Gilly and Ann Jardot 
  • 10 years: Marie Mauer and Charles McFerren
  • Five years: Joyce Alford, Hap Chandler, Viola Dickson, Elaine Ecuyer and Kenneth Pepperman.

MALL WALKERS: North Shore Square Mall, 150 Northshore Blvd., Slidell, will open for walkers at 7 a.m. Wednesday, May 23, through a partnership with Slidell Memorial Hospital, to encourage people to walk with the advantages of mall security, air conditioning and water fountains. For information, call (985) 280-8529.

LAMAZE CHILDBIRTH CLASS: Relaxation and breathing techniques for natural childbirth, signs and symptoms of labor and postpartum care will be discussed during a Lamaze childbirth class from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Thursday, May 24, in the Magnolia Room of Lakeview Regional Medical Center, 95 Judge Tanner Blvd., Covington. Bring a pillow and blanket. To reserve a spot, call (985) 867-3900 or visit

FIT AS A FIREFIGHTER: Children ages 8-12 who would like to learn about a healthy, active lifestyle may benefit from the Fit as a Firefighter nutrition and fitness summer camp to be held from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. June 4-8 at the St. Tammany Fire Protection District No. 1 Training Academy, 34780 S. Range Road, Slidell. Registration packets are available at The fee is $125. For information, call (985) 280-8529.

YOGA FOR CANCER PATIENTS: Patricia Hart conducts free yoga classes for cancer patients, survivors and their caregivers from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Mondays on the second floor of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Wellness Pavilion, 501 Robert Blvd. Slidell. The next class will be May 28. Wear loose-fitting clothing; mats are available for use. Registration and a medical release are required. For information, call Hart at (985) 707-4961.

COMMUNITY CPR CLASS: A class covering adult, pediatric and infant CPR will be presented from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, May 31, in the Magnolia Room at Lakeview Regional Medical Center, 95 Judge Tanner Blvd., Covington. Participants will view a DVD and a demonstration on a mannequin. To register, call (985) 867-3900 or visit

CAREGIVER SUPPORT: The Council on Aging for St. Tammany Parish caregiver support program lets those caring for people with Alzheimer’s, dementia or other age-related illnesses share their struggles and successes, guided by an experienced facilitator. Sessions are scheduled at:

  • Slidell Senior Center, 610 Cousin St., from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on the first and third Tuesdays of each month; the next sessions will be June 5 and June 19.
  • Covington Senior Center, 500 Theard St., from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month; the next sessions will be June 12 and June 26.

For information, call (504) 339-1757.

LOOK GOOD … FEEL BETTER IN SLIDELL: Women with cancer can get free makeup kits, step-by-step demonstrations, a free lunch and support from this program, which will meet from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, June 4, at the Slidell Memorial Hospital Imaging Center, 1495 Gause Blvd., Slidell. To register, call (985) 280-2657.

HEALTHY COOKING: Chef Neil “Nino” Thibodaux will teach cooking skills needed to prepare easy recipes that not only taste good but also help develop healthy eating habits from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 5, in the first-floor conference room at the Slidell Memorial Hospital Founders Building, 1150 Robert Blvd. For information on the free program or to enroll, call (985) 280-6665.

ART THERAPY FOR CANCER PATIENTS: A free art therapy program for cancer patients will be held from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, June 5, at the Slidell Memorial Hospital Regional Cancer Center, 1120 Robert Blvd. The program aims to enhance coping, confidence and stress management. For information or to enroll, call (985) 280-6612.

CAREGIVER COFFEE TALK: Caregivers will discuss ways to cope with stress, care for themselves and restore their energy from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Wednesday, June 6, at the Slidell Memorial Hospital Regional Cancer Center, 1120 Robert Blvd., Slidell. For information, call (985) 280-6612.

HANDS-ONLY CPR: Four free classes in hands-only CPR will be offered Friday afternoon, June 8, in the Community Outreach Center on the second floor of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Wellness Pavilion, 501 Robert Blvd. Hands-only CPR is CPR without mouth-to-mouth breaths. The 45-minute classes will begin at noon, 2 p.m., 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. To register, call (985) 280-2657.

BETTER BREATHERS CLUB: The Better Breathers Club, a program of the American Lung Association, meets from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. on the second Thursday of each month in the Magnolia Room of Lakeview Regional Medical Center, 95 Judge Tanner Blvd., Covington. The next meeting will be June 14. The club is meant for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, as well as their caregivers. To register, visit or call (985) 867-3900.

BREAST-FEEDING CLINIC: Lactation consultants will offer free support and encouragement from 9:30  a.m. to noon Saturday, June 16, the Florida Avenue conference room at Slidell Memorial Hospital, 1025 Florida Ave., Slidell. To register, call (985) 280-8585 or visit

BABY SITTER TRAINING: A one-day Safe Sitter class for people ages 11-14 will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, June 19, in the community outreach center on the second floor of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Wellness Pavilion, 501 Robert Blvd., Slidell. Topics include how to rescue someone who’s choking and helpful information like what to do if there’s severe weather. The cost is $75, which includes a manual and completion card. For information, call (985) 280-8529. Registration packets are available at

SLIDELL AUTISM SUPPORT GROUP: Strengthening Outcomes with Autism Resources will meet at 9  a.m. Wednesday, June 20, in the community outreach center on the second floor of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Wellness Pavilion, 501 Robert Blvd. For information, call Anne Galiano at (504) 812-9548.

SAFE KIDS 101: Nurse Stephanie Daniels will present a Safe Kids 101 course for youth ages 9-14 from 9 a.m. to noon Wednesday, June 20, in the community outreach center on the second floor of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Wellness Pavilion, 501 Robert Blvd. Topics will include basic first aid skills, digital and cooking safety, and how to handle unfamiliar scenarios. The cost is $35. For information and to register, call (985) 280-8529.

WOMEN WARRIORS: Breast cancer patients, survivors and caregivers will meet at 1  p.m. Wednesday, June 20, in the first-floor conference room of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Founders Building, 1150 Robert Blvd. For information, call (985) 280-6611.

CANCER SUPPORT GROUP: People living with cancer and their caregivers will meet at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 20, in the second-floor chapel of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Regional Cancer Center, 1120 Robert Blvd. Remote participation is possible by calling (985) 280-8958 at 1  p.m. on group day.

BEREAVEMENT SUPPORT: A bereavement support group will meet at 3  p.m. Thursday, June 21, in the second-floor chapel at the Slidell Memorial Hospital Regional Cancer Center, 1120 Robert Blvd. For information, call (985) 280-6612.

ANTIBIOTIC STEWARDSHIP: Nurse Sharlene Dering will discuss antibiotic stewardship during a free Lunch Learn program at 11:30 a.m. Friday, June 29, in the first-floor conference room of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Founders Building, 1150 Robert Blvd., Slidell. The antibiotics we have now are all we will have for a while, and many organisms are becoming resistant to them; Dering will discuss the proper use of antibiotics and their side effects. To register, call (985) 280-2657 or visit

FIRST AID SKILLS: The Covington Fire Department and the St. Tammany Parish Hospital Parenting Center will present a two-hour class in first-aid skills at 10 a.m., and again at 2 p.m., June 30 in Bogue Falaya Hall, 317 N. Jefferson Ave., Covington. The free class will include instruction in hands-only CPR and stopping bleeding, and is recommended for people 10 and older. Certain laws protecting citizens who initiate care will also be covered.

GIRL TALK: Girls ages 9-13 will learn about the physical, social and emotional changes of puberty during the Girl Talk session from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 17, in the first-floor conference room of the Slidell Memorial Hospital Founders Building, 1150 Robert Blvd., Slidell. Presenters will include pediatrician Alice LeBreton and dermatologist Taylor Hilton. Teens must be accompanied by an adult. The fee is $15 per family. To register, call (985) 280-2657 or visit

CHILD SAFETY SEAT INSPECTIONS: The St. Tammany Parenting Center is scheduling appointments for free inspections of child safety seats. Call (985) 898-4435. Inspections also are held from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. every Tuesday at the Louisiana State Police Troop L headquarters, 2600 N. Causeway Blvd., Mandeville. Walk-ins are accepted, but appointments are appreciated. For information on the State Police program, call (985) 893-6250 or email

BABY AND ME TOBACCO-FREE: Slidell Memorial Hospital is holding smoking-cessation programs for expectant mothers on Mondays and Wednesdays by appointment. For information or to request an application, call Ashlee Menke at (504) 733-5539.

GAMBLERS ANONYMOUS: Gamblers Anonymous meets several times a week throughout the New Orleans area. Gamblers Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experiences, strength and hope with one another that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from a gambling problem. For information, call (855) 222-5542 or visit

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Belmar Cares Hosts Evening Focused on Healthy Living … and ‘In the Pink’ Fun

BELMAR, NJ — Some 80 women gathered at the Taylor Pavilion yesterday for an evening of inspiring conversation about living healthy — and a bit of pampering — during the fourth annual “In the Pink” Health Fair, hosted by Belmar Cares.

The breast cancer support group brought together a wide spectrum of medical and other professionals who presented the enlightening program on May 23. “If we can save one life with ‘In the Pink,’ then it’s a worthwhile endeavor,” said Claire Deicke, an event organizer who founded the group 10 years ago.

Guest speaker Denise Johnson Miller, M.D., medical director of breast surgery for Neptune-based Meridian Cancer Care, gave participants an overview of recent advances in breast cancer detection, and stressed the importance of genetics and knowing your family’s history of the disease.

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Chiropractor Veera Gupta of Wall focused on how a healthy diet is tantamount to good health, while Kate Walters of Sweet Tease Tea Room and Café offered information on the healing powers of tea and how sitting down for a cup of tea can reduce stress for many.

Liz Balogh of Lin Linen’s explained the mission of her volunteer group in supporting women with cancer by creating personal healing sanctuaries that promote a positive mind, body, and spirit connection crucial to the healing process.

And yoga instructor Brenda Yarnold got the room moving with a chair yoga demonstration.

As for the “pink” pampering, attendees were also treated to pink manicures by Carol Cupoli and sister Camille Witkowski, both of Belmar, and Belmar Council President Jennifer Nicolay, as well as pink hair-painting by Teresa Vassallo of Vanity 18 Hair Salon in Lake Como.

Pink baked treats were served up as well, courtesy of the Belmar Woman’s Club.

TAPinto Belmar/Lake Como is Belmar and Lake Como’s only free daily newspaper. Accredited by the New Jersey Press Association, it is the official electronic newspaper of both municipalities. As a locally owned news organization, TAPinto through its advertisers is able to publish online, objective news 24/7 at no charge. Sign up for its free daily e-News, and follow it on Facebook and Twitter.

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Decoding dementia: It’s not a demon (Health Tips) (May 21-27 is Dementia Action [Awareness] Week)

Dementia affects the memory, thinking, behaviour and the ability to perform everyday activities. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia. While it is true that most cases of dementia cannot be treated, early diagnosis can greatly help in managing the symptoms in most cases.

While raising awareness and offering support will always be important, we must go further to create a change in communities and change the attitude of people towards patients with dementia. We need a fresher approach towards dementia that includes action taken by all stakeholders to create a caring environment for the patient.

Patients with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia deserve our love and respect, but nothing can replace the full-time care and attention that a professional caregiver can provide. Caregivers should not involve people with dementia in decision-making because of their cognitive impairments; but we should treat them as if they had no cognitive impairments and help them retain simple decision-making joys.

We should plan our care around the experience, needs and abilities of the person with dementia. We need to be more understanding so that we can start to step into that person’s world and meet them where they are.

Alternate therapies and their huge impact

One caregiver reported the happy outcome of his patient with dementia who responded positively to his favourite music and when he was around his pet dog. Another reported that more than verbal communication, he resorted to the non-verbal means of communications like reading facial expressions of his patient as he discovered that such expressions communicate feelings. Eye contact, body language and touch proved to be great ways to understand a dementia patient.

Meaningful activities like listening to music, gardening and alternate therapies like pet therapy have shown remarkable effects in many cases. A fresh perspective towards dealing with this is required. An attitude of acceptance can greatly encourage patients to come to terms with the change.

Healthcare providers, the government and support groups need to recognise that diseases of the elderly are going to be a huge public health problem in India. The prevalence of this disorder in India is accelerating and unrecognised cases of dementia are common in our population, especially among mild cases.

Cognitive screening programmes for the elderly, quality homecare for these patients and public education policies designed to increase awareness of dementia are needed if interventions for individuals with potentially manageable dementia are to be implemented.

Challenges and a holistic approach

The major challenge that needs to be addressed is changing the mentality of the people towards this burgeoning crisis. People need to be made aware of the fact that dementia and related problems are not merely old-age related ailments. These are neurological complications that affect the aged that need proper diagnosis, care and support.

Proactive diagnosis of dementia and delirium is the need of the hour. With the increase in nuclear families, joined-up care among family, relatives and professional healthcare providers can be the optimal solution. Holistic treatment management with home healthcare providers in the comfort of one’s home will be the game changer.

(Garima Tripathi is the co-founder of Care24)



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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Nutritionists share their 5 tips for healthy grocery shopping

grocery shopping tips healthy nutritionists 1
Foods labeled “healthy” may not always be best.

Matt Cardy / Getty

  • Making healthy food purchases is often complicated by misleading terms and misinformation.
  • Nutritionists told INSIDER what they actually look at when grocery shopping.
  • The most important information is on the back of product’s packaging.

In 2016, there were an average 38,900 different items carried in supermarket stores. Although variety is the spice of life, making smart and healthy choices is harder with the more options and food choices available.

INSIDER spoke with nutritionists about how they choose between foods while grocery shopping — and what you should look at or consider before making a purchase.

Consider serving sizes.

How much are you really going to eat in one sitting?

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

If you are at the grocery store, registered dietitian Wendy Bazilian told INSIDER you should look at the serving size of the food and think about how much you will actually eat. Do the math and consider the total calories, grams of sugar, sodium, protein, fat, and fiber you would consume eating your normal serving size for that product. That way, you could consider how the food would fit in relation to your other meals and snacks.

Registered dietitian Malina Linkas Malkani, National Media Spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, had similar advice and told INSIDER she has her clients consider which foods they absolutely love. Then she limits them to one small serving of it once per day or less.

“This approach leaves room in the diet to relish a favorite holiday treat or piece of cake at a celebration, for example, but encourages generally choosing more health-promoting versions of foods,” Malkani, creator of the Wholitarian Lifestyle, said.

Disregard buzzwords on the package.

“All natural” doesn’t mean it’s a better option.


Rather than relying on buzzwords, Bazilian suggested reading the ingredients and nutrition facts instead.

“The first ingredient is the ingredient that is the greatest contributor by weight to the package,” she said.

Be on the lookout for foods that list sugar as the first ingredient, or one of the first ingredients in a long list of items. Additionally, lists that are excessively long should especially be carefully checked, according to Bazilian.

“Check that you recognize all, or at least most, of the ingredients,” she said. “As if you were wanting to ‘make’ this food at home, you could theoretically find all, or the grand majority of the ingredients, at the supermarket individually.”

Look at the quality of the ingredients.

Consider the ingredients in addition to the nutrition facts.

Patrick Sison/AP

Make sure the ingredient lists included words that you recognize and can pronounce.

Registered dietitian Andy Bellatti, strategic director of Dietitians for Professional Integrity, told INSIDER that chocolate is a good example.

“Dark chocolate (80% or higher) where the main ingredients are cocoa, cocoa butter, a pinch of sugar, and some vanilla is less processed than a chocolate candy bar,” he said. “Some people think the 80% bar is ‘less healthy’ because it is higher in fat and saturated fat. However, that bar is very low in sugar and, since it contains more cocoa, it offers fiber and minerals like magnesium and iron.”

So even though the chocolate candy bar is lower in fat and total calories, the ingredients in the 80% bar point to the overall higher quality of that chocolate.

In general, Bazilian recommended eating and buying foods with high-quality ingredients — especially if the alternative is low-sugar or low-sodium. (Not to be confused with no added sugars or no added sodium which are good signs, according to Bazilian.)

Be cautious of low-fat and low-sugar labels.

Stick with normal-fat peanut butter.


“Be highly skeptical of low fat or sugar-free items, [which] is different than ‘no added sugar,’” Bazilian said. “Often, low-fat is compensated with higher sugar or added ingredients to make up for the texture and mouthfeel of the full-fat item.”

And anything labeled “sugar-free” is code for artificial sweeteners, according to Bazilian. INSIDER previously reported that overdoing it on these sweeteners could even cause symptoms like bloating, gas, and weight gain.

Opt for the “real” version.

Eat what will satisfy you.

Sarah Schmalbruch/INSIDER

Some brands like to offer “lighter” or more “diet-friendly” food options for people watching their weight or trying to eat healthily. These are meant to replace other foods diet culture makes out to be “bad.”

One example Bazilian gave was ice cream.

“You don’t have to seek the triple cream splurge when you’re going for ice cream, but a little real ice cream is more satisfying and not that many more calories and fat grams than a lower-fat variety,” she said.

“[Those varieties] may incorporate extra ingredients or chemicals to attempt to make up for the mouthfeel or quality of the real deal.”

INSIDER previously reported that nutritionists also find these “healthy” ice creams encourage overeating.

Instead of looking for quick diet fixes, use these tips to make health-promoting picks that will add up over time, Malkani said. Consistent healthy choices could help you maintain your weight, improve your sleep and energy, and better your mood and overall quality of life. Those reasons are motivation enough to spend a little extra time reading food labels and ingredient lists.

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