Favorite Easter Foods – Partake or Pass?

Easter is time to celebrate spring and new beginnings. This year, make some new, healthy, holiday traditions at the grocery store, in the kitchen and in your Easter basket, using our healthy alternatives guide:

Proteins

Partake: Lamb
Pass: Ham

favorite easter foodsLamb is great source of protein, 26 grams per 3 ounce serving, iron and zinc and it also is a good source of vitamin B 12 and niacin. Lamb is also much lower in sodium for heart health compared to cured meats, such as ham. Lamb contains only 48 mg of sodium, compared to ham which contains 756 mg sodium. To lower the fat content of lamb, trim all visible fat and drain fat drippings from cooked ground lamb.

Partake: Hardboiled Eggs
Pass: Deviled Eggs

While both are good sources of protein, 6 grams per whole egg, deviled eggs contain more fat and sodium than hardboiled eggs. If deviled eggs are your favorite, consider a healthier recipe, substitute ½ of the mayonnaise for Dijon mustard and use smoked paprika and black pepper instead of salt.

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Vegetables

Partake: French Cut Green Beans
Pass: Green Bean Casserole

Green beans are a nutrient dense, low-calorie, vegetable. They will provide filling fiber, and many phytonutrients, vitamins such as A, B-12 and B-6, as well as minerals such as iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese and potassium. However, the preparation of these healthy green veggies makes a big difference in their nutritional value. Traditional Green Bean Casseroles can have as much as 240 calories per 1 cup serving in comparison with steamed green beans that contain 35 calories per 1 cup serving.

Partake: Mashed Potatoes
Pass: Scalloped Potatoes

Potatoes are a great source of vitamin C, potassium and fiber (in the skin of the potato). However, the preparation of potatoes can make these healthy tubers into a diet-disaster. 1 cup of scalloped potatoes, with butter, cheese, and whole milk can have as much as 280 calories. 1 cup of mashed potatoes with whole milk and butter contains about 200 calories. You can still enjoy mashed potatoes while cutting calories, substitute skim milk for whole milk, olive oil for butter and ½ potatoes for cauliflower and turnips, save 70+ calories.

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Candy

Partake: Hershey Dark Chocolate Mini Eggs
Pass: Cadbury Crème Egg

Chocolate can have a place in a healthy, balance diet, in moderation. Dark chocolate trumps milk chocolate, due to its higher cancer-fighting antioxidant content. So if chocolate is a must in your Easter celebration; pass on the Cadbury Crème Egg, which contains 170 calories, 8 g fat, 15 mg sodium, 19 g sugar, and 1 g protein for 1 egg, and pick up five Hershey’s Dark Chocolate mini eggs for 180 calories, 12 g fat, 0 mg sodium, 16 g sugar, 1.5 g protein and 8% of your daily value of iron. Unwrapping five eggs will seem like more of a splurge than just one Cadbury egg.

Partake: Justin’s Organic Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
Pass: Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs

Portion size matters! Justin’s Organic Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups not only contain less artificial ingredients, but also ingredients that are sustainably harvested. You can have two of these cups for 200 calories, 16 g fat, 120 mg sodium, 14 g sugars, 4g protein instead of two Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs which contains more than twice as much sugar and a lot more highly processed ingredients.

Pass: Peeps
Pass: Jelly Beans

Both of these candies contain very little nutrition and high amounts of sugar. 5 Peeps, or 1.5 ounces contains 36 grams of sugar, that’s nine teaspoons of sugar! ¼ cup of jelly beans, or 1.5 ounces contains 30 grams of sugar, or 7.5 teaspoons. Fill the Easter basket with some “healthier” candies such as dark chocolate covered dried blueberries or raw nuts or seeds, or Annie’s Homegrown Bunny Fruit Snacks, which contain only 10 grams of sugar per 0.8 portion-controlled package.

Bottom line: treats have a place in a balanced, healthy diet as long as they are in moderation. During the holidays, pass on the treats you can find year-round such as soda pop, ice cream, cookies, cakes and chips. Now, Grandma’s famous rhubarb custard pie? That only comes around once a year, so enjoy.

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5 Tips to Prevent Youth Concussions

youth concussionsAn American Journal of Sports Medicine study that found that concussions accounted for 15% of all high school sports injuries, occurring in sports ranging from football and ice hockey to cheerleading and soccer. This adds ups to around 200,000 to 300,000 concussions every year for high school athletes.

Preventing concussions in youth sports is an increasingly important focus for the CDC, youth sports programs and parents across the United States.

Here are five tips to prevent youth concussions for parents, players and coaches:

1.  Know the Signs and Symptoms of Concussions

There are few things more dangerous than a youth suffering a mild concussion during a game and then returning to play in a compromised state. Recognizing the signs and symptoms of a concussion can help athletes miss one game instead of the entire season. Signs that parents and coaches should look for include:

  • appearing dazed or confused
  • forgetting instructions
  • being confused about the score or the opponent
  • answering questions slowly
  • moving clumsily

Athletes should also be educated on symptoms to look for so they can inform coaches of potential concussions:

  • headaches
  • nausea of vomiting
  • balance problems or dizziness
  • sensitivity to light or noise
  • double vision
  • feeling sluggish or foggy
  • concentration or memory problems

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2.  Properly Fitted Equipment

Properly fitted helmets and protective equipment, like mouth guards, are essential to preventing head injuries. But equipment alone can’t protect against concussions – there is no concussion-proof helmet. Some athletes strap on a helmet and shoulder pads and feel invincible, so equipment isn’t enough.

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I ignored my signs of a stroke…

by Laura Miller, Beaumont volunteer

A stroke can hit you anytime, anyplace and anywhere. I had a stroke at age 53 while I was sitting at my computer at work. But I waited more than two hours to get help because I was in denial about my symptoms.

If you can ask for help, don’t wait. A drug that can be given within several hours of a stroke may limit the amount of damage to you, the American Heart Association reported in February. I didn’t get the drug, and here’s what happened to me.

stroke_signsFirst, a very sharp stab of pain shot through my head while I was sitting at my desk. It went from behind my ear to my forehead in a jolt. I didn’t pay enough attention because I was used to having head pain from migraines. So I stopped for a second and then kept on working.

Some time later when I got up to go to another room and found myself running into the door jams on either side of the door. I remember thinking this can’t be happening while it happened about three more times. I thought, “I must be careless.”

Finally, about the third time I got up, I started getting a glimmer that something was wrong. And I noticed that my cheek on the left side was so cold. I finally said to my colleague next to me, “I wonder if I’m having stroke.” Without waiting for an answer, I went back to my desk and starting typing on my computer. Then within moments, I couldn’t read anything on the screen.

It wasn’t until then that I really started thinking something was so wrong that I had to do something. I got up from my desk and told my boss that I needed to go home. He said, “Are you sure you’re alright to go home?” And, still in denial about what was happening, I responded, “Yes.”

It was a good thing that he had the presence of mind to have one of my co-workers go with me. As I was leaving the room, I was weaving back and forth, banging into desks along the way.

It wasn’t until we got down to the security area of the building that I said, “I think we need to call an ambulance.”

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Volunteer Week: How and why donating time is a wonderful gift

volunteer_week

Volunteers are the eyes and ears, spirit and soul of the Beaumont, says Beth Frydlewicz, system director of Volunteer Services. Volunteers choose this health care organization “because they believe that Beaumont is the best team in town,” Beth says. Over 2,300 people serve throughout the Beaumont Health System sharing their time and talents.

Our team of volunteers donate $6.5 million of time and talent each year. They are an important part of our team, serving in 288 different areas of our health system. Volunteer opportunities are available in:

  • guest services
  • lounges/waiting areas
  • emergency center
  • imaging center
  • endoscopy
  • gift shops/flower room
  • care management
  • spiritual care

There are also volunteers working in the community through the Parenting Program, NoBLE and Hospice.

Why do people volunteer?

volunteers“Satisfaction of helping others, learning new things and giving back to the community are the most common reasons why people volunteer,” Beth says. “They choose Beaumont because of its excellent reputation, personal experience and a wide variety of opportunities.”

There is a screening process for all volunteers. They must also learn about the characteristics of a volunteer role and are able to choose their top three areas of interest.

How can you spot a Beaumont volunteer during your visit to the hospital? All volunteers wear a grey Beaumont badge and wear a red jacket or red polo shirt with black pants and shoes.

Who makes a good volunteer? Beth says, “Volunteers are here to make a difference in the world. They represent our global patient base and bring personal experience that is unique to our team. A good volunteer is dependable, loyal and committed to provide the best service possible to our patients, visitors and staff.”

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Gardening for Health: Grow Your Own Superfoods

Grow your own superfoodsYou want to incorporate more superfoods into your diet for their high concentrations of vitamins and nutrients – but keeping enough fresh fruits and vegetables around the house can be a challenge. Growing your own produce is an increasingly popular and affordable way to keep your kitchen well-stocked with fresh, delicious produce. Here are some tips to get you started growing your own superfoods:

Plan ahead
While some plants can be bought in pots and planted when nearly full-grown, some are best planted as seeds well in advance of harvest time. Ideal planting times vary for each species, so determine which plants you want to grow ahead of time and use an almanac to determine the best weeks to plant for a timely and bountiful harvest.

Decide on an indoor or outdoor garden
If you live in a colder climate, growing at least some of your produce indoors will help you stock your vegetable crisper year-round.  Especially nutritious herbs like cilantro and basil can easily be grown indoors in a kitchen garden. Superfoods with shallow root systems, like tomatoes and blueberries, can also thrive in a windowsill container garden, provided they get enough natural light.

Other superfoods, like sweet potatoes and garlic, benefit from the deeper soil of an outdoor garden. Take into consideration how much light your plants will need and how much moisture they will require before deciding on a place for your garden.

If you have the space, maintaining both an indoor and an outdoor garden will allow you to cultivate the most superfoods throughout the year.

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Healthy Weight Essential to Healthy Joints

by Andrew Ajluni, D.O., Beaumont orthopedic surgeon

Did you know that 10 extra pounds equals 40 extra pounds of pressure on your knees?

healthy_jointsA healthy weight is essential to the health of your joints. In fact, research has proven that excess weight increases your risk for developing osteoarthritis AND increases arthritis pain. The extra pressure felt in the weight-bearing joints (knees and hips) can make activities of daily living, household chores, getting up out of a chair or even just walking more painful. A few extra pounds can really drag you down both physically and emotionally.

How can you help keep your joints healthy?
Incorporate exercise into your daily routine, maintain a healthy body weight and keep your  doctor up to date with any joint pain or problems that you are experiencing.

What types of exercise are best for people with arthritis/joint pain?
Consider exercises that are low-impact activities such as:

  • swimming
  • cycling
  • biking
  • elliptical machines
  • range- of- motion activities
  • resistance/thera-band exercises.

Choose an activity that you enjoy and remember exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous.

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Beaumont Food of the Month: Brussels Sprouts

Food of the Month, brussels sproutsBrussels sprouts are cabbage’s cooler, younger cousins. These hearty greens are loaded with vitamins as well as sulforaphane, a chemical that is thought to contain anti-cancer properties. Avoid boiling brussels sprouts to keep these nutrients as intact as possible – instead, roast, steam or stir-fry your sprouts. For an interesting twist, try shredding raw brussels sprouts and incorporating the greens into your favorite salads.

For the freshest brussels sprouts, look for vibrant, dark green outer leaves and stem ends that aren’t brown or dried out. Avoid brussels sprouts that have bruised or browned leaves. Choose still-on-the-stalk sprouts over loose sprouts – they will stay fresh for much longer.

Nutritional information

  • Brussels sprouts (1 cup)
  • Calories: 38
  • Fat: 0.3 g (0%)
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Potassium: 342 g (9%)
  • Total Carbohydrates: 8 g (2%)
  • Protein: 3 g (6%)
  • Vitamin A: 13%
  • Vitamin C: 124%
  • Calcium: 3%
  • Magnesium: 5%
  • Iron: 6%

How to cook with brussels sprouts

Roast, steam, stir-fry or grill brussels sprouts to enjoy alone or paired with sensible portions of red meat. Brussels sprouts are most tender when cooked slowly at a high heat. The cabbage-like bitterness of brussels sprouts pairs well with sweet flavors like honey or balsamic vinegar; sprouts are also delicious when salted or spiced.

New to the world of brussels sprouts? Try these flavorful recipes:

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Myths About Autism Spectrum Disorders

by Lori Warner, Ph.D., Director, HOPE Center, Center for Human Development

World Autism Awareness DayThough an estimated 1 in every 68 children is diagnosed with an autism disorder (according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), the spectrum of disorders is broad – and each person will face different challenges. One popular saying is, “If you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism.”

This means that we should treat each person as an individual and not just based on a diagnosis. Since today is World Autism Awareness Day, let’s clear up some of the more common myths surrounding the autism community:

MYTH: Autism is a mental health disorder.
Autism is a neurological disorder. Studies of patients with autism show abnormalities in neurotransmitter levels and the structure of the brain. There are, however, some mental health issues that may co-occur with autism spectrum disorders, such as anxiety disorders, Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD) or depression.

MYTH: Autism is relatively new.
Though it was first described scientifically in the 1940s, the earliest description of a child now through to have had autism was written in 1799. The latest diagnostic category – autism spectrum disorder – is relatively new, but the general characteristics have been known for some time.

MYTH: People with autism are intellectually disabled.
Individuals on the autism spectrum are unique and have a wide range of intellectual abilities. Some may struggle with social skills or more foundational tasks, but can quickly master complex concepts. Some people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders go on to earn college and graduate degrees and work in a variety of professions.

MYTH: People with autism spectrum disorders lack empathy.
Individuals with autism spectrum disorders feel as much – if not more – empathy than you, though they may express it in a way that is difficult to recognize. Researchers think that autism spectrum disorders are more disorders of social processing than actual lack of social interest or emotional capacity.

MYTH: Autism can be cured.
There is currently no cure for autism spectrum disorders. However, with appropriate intervention, some children do fall into the optimal outcome category, meaning that their skill set has changed to the point that they may be indistinguishable from their peers who never carried an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis.

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Beaumont Children’s Hospital patients get a birds-eye view of Rio 2

Birds of a feather (Nico and Pedro from the upcoming movie Rio 2) flocked to Beaumont Children’s Hospital to visit some of our youngest patients. Nico, a yellow canary with a bottlecap hat, and Pedro, a red-crested cardinal, were big hits with the patients, families and staff. In the movie, Nico is voiced by Jamie Foxx and Pedro’s voice comes from will.i.am. Rio 2 will be in theaters April 11.

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Doctors’ Day 2014

Doctors' DaySunday is Doctors’ Day – a day to recognize the contributions of physicians and their impact on individual lives and communities.

Beaumont has 3,403 (attending, associate and ambulatory) physicians on our medical staffs representing 91 medical and surgical specialties. In 2013, Beaumont doctors:

  • performed more than 76,600 surgeries
  • saw more than 235,000 emergency visits
  • helped deliver almost 9,400 new Beaumont babies

Our Beaumont doctors represent 487 universities (throughout the world) and speak a total of 80 languages. Beaumont is also the exclusive clinical partner for the Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine, with more than 1,500 Beaumont doctors on faculty.

These Beaumont doctors have been honored by their patients, employees and colleagues through a contribution to Beaumont Foundation for National Doctors’ Day. This is a testament to the outstanding care provided by all of the dedicated physicians at Beaumont.

Is there a Beaumont doctor you’d like to recognize? Leave a comment to share the name of the Beaumont doctor that made a positive impact on your life.

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