Why 50 Is The New 40

older black man(BlackDoctor.org) — Being middle aged just ain’t what it used to be.  Health care knowledge and technology have come a long way, and we’re not talking facelifts and Botox.  Preventive medicine and a greater understanding of the impact of diet and exercise can help you extend the prime years of your life.  Studies show that less than 20 percent of your lifespan is determined by genes and the rest is up to you, so take advantage of the information we have today that was told to your parents and grandparents a little differently.

A Healthy Heart

It was all about cholesterol. If cholesterol levels were normal there was nothing to worry about. If it was a bit high then a low-fat diet would do the trick.

Even people with normal cholesterol levels can have heart disease. A CT coronary artery scan can detect and measure calcium accumulation in the arteries even when all other tests appear normal.

An active lifestyle combined with a diet low in sodium, trans fats and high in omega-3’s, fruits and vegetables can help keep heart disease at bay.

Good Vision

Doctors believed age-related macular degeneration could not be prevented.  Only time would tell.

Vitamins including C, E, zinc and beta carotene can decrease vision loss by about 25 percent for those with early signs of degeneration.

Belly Laughs

Experts believed sense of human was a genetic trait. Some people are just more prone to laugh than others.

Laughing is a great way to relieve stress, which can increase risk of many diseases.  Penciling in time to laugh can help improve immune-enhancing hormones, and has some similar benefits to physical activity.

Stable Blood Sugar

A diet high in complex carbs such as whole grains, nuts and vegetables was essential to prevent diabetes.

The focus has shifted to total calories.  If you’re overweight, losing weight is one of the most important things you can do to prevent type-2 diabetes.  We also now know that being African American and a lack of physical activity increase the risk for diabetes.

Sharp Hearing

The only way to protect hearing, many thought, was to avoid constant loud noises and loud music.

The antioxidants found in vegetables and fruits may help protect the ear’s tiny hair cells from long and short term damage.


It was all about family.  Relatives, children and a spouse were the most important emotional bonds a person could have.

Research shows that friendships save lives.  A Harvard School of Public Health study of more than 2,800 women with breast cancer found that those without close friends were 4 times more likely to die than women with 10 or more friends.

Strong, Healthy Bones

Drinking lots of whole milk ensured a good supply of vitamin D and calcium would help keep those bones strong.

As many as 75 percent of African American women are lactose intolerant, so eating vitamin D and calcium fortified cereals and other foods is particularly important. We also now know that protein in addition to calcium and vitamin D are crucial to keeping bones strong.


Immunizations were for kids.

Adults get protection against many diseases including the flu, shingles and pneumonia.
Tetanus-diphtheria boosters are recommended every 10 years. Staying current on shots and asking your doctor about vaccinations can save lives.


Is Work Sabotaging Your Diet?

different donut flavors(BlackDoctor.org) — A typical day at the office: You rush off with no breakfast. By morning tea time you’re onto your third coffee. Since it’s a tea break you go for a large creamy latté and a big muffin. Lunch rolls around and you grab something quickly without thinking. By afternoon you’re feeling tired and groggy, so you go hit the snack box or vending machine and gulp down a Red Bull…

Welcome to the busy working lifestyle – where the combination of poor nutrition and high stress make for a sick and tired person – and most probably overweight as well. But fear not, you can survive your workplace without sabotaging your weight-loss efforts.

Counting Calories at Work: Coping With Treats
Whether it’s birthday cake or your co-worker’s candy jar calling your name, suffering through day after day of temptation is difficult for anyone. Even if you allow the occasional treat in your calorie-counting plan, chances are a big wedge of chocolate cake will still upset your diet.

“Out of sight is probably the best approach,” says Donna L. Weihofen, RD, MS, nutritionist at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics in Madison. Weihofen cites a study that compared people’s snacking behavior when tempted by candy in a clear glass bowl on a nearby desk with candy in an opaque bowl at a distance and found, not surprisingly, that people snack less when the source of temptation is hard to scope out. “Make a rule that food has to be in the break room where you see it less often.” As for birthday cake, a little nibble during the celebration won’t hurt — just know your limits.

Counting Calories at Work: Surviving the Business Lunch and Dinner
Eating out is always a challenge when you’re on a diet. Weihofen is a big advocate of the “calorie bargain” — choosing tasty, filling foods that are low in calories and available on almost every menu if you look for them.

“I never have pasta because it adds up too fast. Have a little filet or fish and a baked potato and salad with dressing on the side. You can do really well in a restaurant if you make the meal plainer,” she says. Weihofen also recommends shrimp (as long as it isn’t fried) and says to steer clear of sweetened or alcoholic drinks.

Counting Calories at Work: Brown Bag, Cafeteria, or Fast Food?

A more common problem is what to eat for lunch on a daily basis. Whether you bring your own, swing by the office cafeteria, or pick from the fast food joints near your office, you can still be successful with counting calories:

Brown bag for more control. If you pack your own lunch, you can know exactly how many calories are in it, whether you make a salad or heat up a frozen meal in the office microwave. But, she admits, planning your brown bag can be a hassle and there will be days when it doesn’t work out.

Be selective in the cafeteria line. With a little practice, you will be able to find choices that are filling and tasty but don’t break your diet, such as salad (skip the cheese, nuts, and dressing), baked chicken and veggies, or yogurt and fruit. Some cafeterias will make nutritional information available if you ask.

Get smart about fast food. Look at the nutritional analysis online or at the restaurant to find out which items offer you the best options for calorie counting before you order. If you can’t do the research, stick with foods that are not fried (like baked chicken sandwiches) or are fresh (like salad, hold the dressing).

Counting Calories at Work: Creating a Healthier Workplace
The easiest way to affect your immediate team may be to bring in healthy snacks such as a fruit or veggie platter occasionally.

Employers are increasingly aware that it is in their interest to help prevent costly health conditions such as diabetes and obesity, which means there may be opportunities for you to help make your office a healthier workplace.

If you work at a large company, talk to your human resources director, building management, or facilities services about how to get involved with decisions about vending machines and the cafeteria menu. Chances are you aren’t the only one who would like to see a baked fish option and multi-grain bread sandwiches on the menu, along with healthier options in the vending machine.
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