Archive for the ‘Sandwich Generation’ Category

Recently I spoke to a friend who was diagnosed with breast cancer. She has dense breast tissue and the cancer was found after it had advanced. (That’s another story.)

After suffering from high blood pressure for many years, I have been looking at diet and exercise as a way to correct my pressure. I wondered if the same issues that apply in my quest for a more balanced blood pressure could also apply to cancer. So I spoke to Dr. Sam Schikowitz, a naturopathic doctor and acupuncturist located in New Paltz. Dr. Schikowitz has extensive training in naturopathic modalities as well acupuncture and other forms of Asian medicine.

Funny, but his two main suggestions–eat healthy and exercise–not only help cancer patients but help all of us live life to its fullest.

Eat the Right Stuff

  1. A diet high in protein and fat helps people lose weight. It  also improves the long term cancer survival rate. According to Dr. Schikowitz, “You want (a cancer) patient’s blood sugar to be regulated because cancer cells love sugar.” He says cancer patients who consume increased amounts of sugar, may risk speeding up their own deaths, since cancer cells thrive on sugar.
  2. Stop smoking and stay away from others who smoke as well.  Many studies conducted by the National Institutes of Health show a direct correlation between the smoke from cigarettes and breast cancer.
  3. Be careful of toxins in your diet. According to Dr. Schikowitz, most toxins come from toxic animal products.

    I asked the doctor how hard is it to remove these toxins from our diet. Although it takes some effort, it definitely is reflected in feeling better and looking better. Some of his suggestions include buying organic products, free range chickens, light tuna, canned salmon and whole grain brown rice. And yes, antioxidants and green tea are helpful, he says, but usually in conjunction with an overall approach to a healthy lifestyle.

    Frozen foods are a good second choice to fresh. And of course, stay away from foods with a lot of preservatives and additives.

Develop an Exercise Regime

  1. First of all, according to Dr. Schikowitz there is no pill out there that does what exercise does for you. So your first step is to come up with an overall exercise plan.
  2. What’s great about exercise is that, in general, it improves your mood while it improves your body’s metabolism; and it reduces all types of illnesses.
  3. One of the great bi-products of exercise is that it is a great regulator of blood sugar. It also helps you think better, feel better, and affects your immune systems.
  4. The most effective way to change how your metabolism works is to develop an aerobic training program. I know I am doing aerobic exercise, when I am breathing heavily for an extended  period of time.  (Aerobic training is effective in burning sugar.) Use short sprints and interval training as part of your exercise program. Do three individual sets of an exercise rather than one long set.

For more information about Dr. Sam Schikowitz and his philosophy about keeping healthy, visit his website .

Look for a follow up: I asked my press contact at the National Institutes of Health about their current studies on the relationship between diet and cancer. Let’s see what they come up with.

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County Executive William R. Steinhaus has announced the Dutchess County Office for the Aging is seeking input from senior citizens, caregivers, service providers and the general public on the agency’s programs and the needs of the senior community at three upcoming Public Hearings:

 Tuesday, September 21    11:00 AM
Tri-Town Senior Friendship Center
American Legion Hall, 1302 Overlook Road, Poughkeepsie

 Monday, September 27     11:00 AM
 Beacon Senior Friendship Center
 1 Forrestal Heights, Beacon

 Wednesday, September 29     11:30 AM
Millerton Senior Friendship Center
Village Hall Community Room, Simmons St. & Dutchess Avenue

Those who are unable to attend one of the Public Hearings may submit written opinions on the Dutchess County Office for the Aging’s services before September 30th to be included in the record of the hearings.  They should be mailed to John Beale, Director, Dutchess County Office for the Aging, 27 High Street, Poughkeepsie, NY  12601.

For information about the Office for the Aging, call (845) 486-2555, toll free at (866) 486-2555 or email ofa@co.dutchess.ny.us .  Visit the website for details on services and programs: www.dutchessny.gov/CountyGov/Departments/Aging/AGIndex.htm.

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Press Release, Aug 16:

The Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union is hosting a seminar designed to answer questions about reverse mortgages. The company sells reverse mortgages. Here are some questions that will be answered:

  • What is a reverse mortgage?
  • How does a reverse mortgage differ from a home equity loan?
  • How much money can I receive?
  • Will my heirs lose any remaining equity in my home?
  •  What are the costs to originate a reverse mortgage?
  • Suitability of a reverse mortgage, what are the factors?
  •  What are risks and benefits of a reverse mortgage?

This seminar will be broadcasted locally at MHV from a remote location using web conference services from Members® Trust Company. 

  Speaker(s): Tom Walker, JD, CEO & President / Beth Brunner Lee, VP, Reverse Mortgages of Members® Trust Company

Refreshments will be served.

 When: Thursday, August 26 3:00pm-4:00pm 

 Where: Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union Credit Union Center; 1099 Morton Blvd, Kingston 

 Cost: Free, Open to the Public

 Registration: Required, Call 1-800-451-8373, ext.3238 or email Seminars@MHVFCU.com

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A recent entry in the New York Times blog “The New Old Age”” talks about the writer’s experience in selecting a nursing home for his aging mother. His number one tipoff of a good provider? The length of tenure of nurses aides. It’s a must read for those of us who may be facing this decision-making process in the near future. Check out the piece and give us your thoughts. Maybe we’ll do a feature about 5 things to look for when selecting a nursing home.

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A critical new report from the prestigious  Institute of Medicine declares high blood pressure in the U.S. to be a neglected disease and that nearly one in three adults has hypertension, and it’s on the rise. Doctors and patients are not treating it aggressively even though it is the nation’s second-leading cause of death. This is surprising because it is relatively simple to prevent and treat. You can read the rest of the article here, but let us know what you think. Are you surprised by these findings? If you were diagnosed with hypertension would you insist that your doctor treat it aggressively? I was very surprised that these health conditions are often overlooked, especially if it can be changed with simple lifestyle changes.

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by Sharon MacGregor

I am a freelance writer and columnist living in Sulllivan County.  My husband and I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary last year and are raising our two man-cubs with both old-fashioned and modern parenting styles.  Another member of our family is our one-year old, yellow Lab, Maddy.  I look forward to sharing a slice of our family life and family related news with the Hudson Valley Parent community!

Your child has expressed an interest in a college, you have done the research and signed up for an Open House.  Here’s one family’s point of view…Upon arrival – you and your future college student are a bit excited, anticipatory and maybe a bit nervous.  The college has a continental breakfast for everyone including bagels, coffee, tea, juice and water.  The staff and administrators are clicking up and down hallways, some are gathered to meet and greet parents and young adults.  The milling about and waiting feels somehow similar to that of a hospital waiting room, my eyes sometimes lock with another mother and we smile, bonded and silently communicate, “I feel it, too.”

Commonly this initial informal gathering is followed by the entire group filing into an auditorium for a formal introduction to information that will interest all potential students including some majors available and a financial aid overview.  Almost everyone wants their individual questions answered and if this is your first Open House, please realize not only will you leave without being able to ask all of your questions, new ones may arise by the end of the day.  Try to write them down and later organize them by topic; admissions procedures, financial aid, residence or other topic.

Following the formal presentation are usually campus tours.  Groups are formed and we file out behind a student.  I realize I am the only mother of a son.  I can hear the parents questions.  What are the rules regarding co-ed living arrangements?  Overnight guest policies?  How are they enforced?  The questions are asked and I smile.  I am relieved by their concern, though my son will probably commute to school, not live on campus, it is for his protection as well.

Security, the location of emergency call boxes with cameras and individual picture identification cards necessary for admission to all buildings are explained and the parents nod and sigh.

We are shown cafeterias, libraries, classrooms, lecture halls, computer and science labs, social/gathering rooms and lastly, a residence hall.

Two actual, in use and occupied rooms have been designated a part of the tour.  They are decorated in a teen style, complete with posters, and the parents feel the square footage is satisfactory.

“Who cleans the bathroom,” a potential student asks.

The answer?  The students who occupy the room attached to the bathroom are responsible for keeping it clean.  Single occupancy rooms are not available without a medical reason (wheelchair bound or needing an aid or assistant.)

The tour ends two hours later with lunch.  We are ravenous from politely turning down the breakfast treats.  Some press on, the next segment is to meet with faculty and others concentrating on your chosen major or course interest.  

Our day is concluded.  I must find out more about FAFSA for financial aid.  Good luck to you and your future college graduate.

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