Is my child’s health compromised by dental fillings?

By Brooke Strickland


Getting your kids to take care of their teeth can be a challenge.  And sometimes, cavities and fillings are inevitable.  A recent study published by the journal Pediatrics, found that children ages 6 to 10 that had fillings with BPA-based material had behavioral scores that dropped, as opposed to kids who had cavities that were filled with different materials. (1)

There has been a lot of talk about BPA in recent years and has been banned from baby bottles and kids sippy cups due to the the harmful effects of it.  It can also be found in some food packaging, beverage cans, or plastic storage containers.  Experts have been concerned that it can have negative effects on brain, behavior, and that it can disrupt hormone levels in the body.  It has also been found that it can pose heart problems and recent studies have shown links to obesity, diabetes and ADHD. In all actuality, the amount of exposure to BPA that a child may have with a BPA-based filling is small, but it is important to be aware of the harmful effects and make sure to ask your dentist about it before any procedure is conducted. 

Prevention is the real key here, however.  Reducing your children’s intake of sugar-filled drinks, snacks, or candies is important.  In addition, encourage your kids to brush and floss their teeth regularly, at least twice a day.  And especially, make sure your child gets regular dental care.  They can start seeing a dentist as early as age one and it’s important to get them established in this routine for overall good oral hygiene.   If you make sure that these things are part of your regular routine, the likelihood that your child will need fillings is greatly reduced. 






1.   Cool Collier, Lisa.  “Do Dental Fillings Harm Kids’ Health?”  Yahoo Health.  February 15, 2013. Accessed March 9, 2013.

Meal times and weight loss


By Brooke Strickland

We’ve heard often about not eating late at night or giving into those dreaded midnight chocolate cravings, but a recent study showed that if you want to lose weight you should not just focus on what you’re eating, but what time you’re eating it.  The study published in the International Journal of Obesity found that people that ate a bigger meal later in the day lost less weight than the people that ate their biggest meal earlier in the day.  The study looked at 420 people in Spain, during a 20-week weight loss treatment program, with the people split into two groups. The first group of participants ate lunch before 3 pm and the other ones ate lunch after 3pm. The result:  the early eaters on average lost 25% more weight than the late eaters. [1]

So how can you incorporate this into your weight loss regimen?  It’s easy to get busy at work or at home and forget to eat an early lunch.  Sometimes, you’re on the run all day and by the time you realize you’re hungry, it is well past the lunch hour.  So, begin carving out a regular lunch time routine at the same time each day.  Pick a time that makes sense for you and sit down and eat a healthy, well balanced meal.  For example, if you eat lunch at noon, eat a large, healthy meal that will keep you full until dinner.  Then, at dinner, have a smaller portion that has fewer calories. 

Follow this motto and see if it helps you shed the pounds faster: eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper.

[1] “Meal times may affect weight loss success.” January 29, 2013. Accessed on March 5, 2013.

How do I boost my testosterone?

Starting at age 30, testosterone levels in men usually start slowly decreasing and will continue to decrease as aging happens.  If you’re looking for natural ways to boost your testosterone levels, there are some safe, healthy ways to do this. 

First of all, if you’re overweight, shedding extra pounds can help increase your testosterone levels.  So, start limiting processed sugar, processed foods, and refined carbs.  Instead, build up your intake of fresh fruits and vegetables and start a regular exercise routine.  Even just walking a few times a week can help get you back in shape and help you lose some of those unwanted pounds.  

Second, supplementing with zinc can help increase your production of testosterone.  It’s estimated that men lacking in testosterone are usually deficient in zinc levels so supplementing your diet with this can show significant results.  You can increase zinc intake by eating foods that have high zinc levels like fish, raw cheese, beans, yogurt, or kefir.  Talk to your doctor before trying additional over the counter zinc supplements.  In addition, vitamin D is a vitamin that you’ll want to have plenty of.  This can help increase levels of testosterone and can in turn, boost libido. 

Next, minimize stress levels.  When you’re under a lot of stress, your body naturally gives off high levels of cortisol which can block testosterone.  Chronic stress is not healthy for anyone, so finding ways to relax and unwind is important not only for physical health, but emotional well-being too. 

Eating healthy fats is also an important part of building testosterone.  Healthy fats are those fats found in nuts, avocados, olives, olive or coconut oils, or grass-fed meats.  Your body requires these types of fats, so eat up!

Does child Tylenol dosage really matter?

By Brooke Strickland


Baby Tylenol (acetaminophen) is a standard in helping treat your child for a fever or for minor aches and pains.  It is readily available and is usually effective, but when given too much, it can be extremely harmful.  Doses DO matter when it comes to any medication, especially when it comes to medicating your child. 

It’s easy to accidentally give your child an overdose in kid’s Tylenol.  This is usually because you might be in a rush and you don’t measure closely the amount going into the dropper.  In addition, you must remember to never give your child adult Tylenol.  The adult version has more complex formulation and the children’s Tylenol drops are concentrated especially for a child or infant’s delicately growing system.  Substituting these drops for adult Tylenol would be an overdose and you should never make this mistake.

Another way to accidentally overdose is by thinking more will be better and help your child feel better.  If your child is especially fussy, don’t give them more and more Tylenol.  In addition, don’t increase the frequency of the dose.  Generally, doses can be repeated every four hours, but you should always read the back of the label before defaulting to that.  ALWAYS read the recommended amount and frequency instructions before giving medication to your child.

And most importantly, keep the Tylenol away from your kids.  The bright pink or purple colors of the medicine and the colorful packaging can look appealing to a kid and they might think it is candy or something yummy to drink.  If they get the bottle open and can drink it, your kid could be in serious danger. 

If you have any questions about what the appropriate dosage is for your child, never hesitate to ask your pediatrician.  It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Health benefits of Brussels sprouts

By Brooke Strickland


I was afraid of Brussels sprouts when I was a kid.  I thought they looked like little green brains and they freaked me out.  True story – and one that I’m sure is a common feeling for many kids out there.  Now that I’m an adult and love Brussels sprouts, I started researching the health properties of them.  There are many great health benefits to eating Brussels sprouts on a regular basis.

First of all, they are high in antioxidants and have high vitamin C, E, and A content, as well as the mineral manganese.   They are also high in fiber and with just one cup of Brussels sprouts you’ll have the 16% recommended daily allowance of fiber you need.  They are especially high in vitamin K which is known to help keep your bones strong and can help prevent calcification of body tissue.  They are also very low in calories and fat and high in protein, so this makes a great addition to your diet.   Brussels sprouts also contain isothiocyanates, which can help prevent cancer by helping eliminating potential carcinogens in the body.

Need some ideas on how to incorporate Brussels sprouts into your diet?  Of course, they are delicious steamed then served with a dash of salt & pepper and a dollop of butter. They are also great when cooked stovetop then sprinkled with parmesan cheese.  They are also amazing roasted with a glaze of balsamic vinegar or as part of a salad chopped up with kale, or shaved with red onion, lemon, and grated Romano cheese. 

These “baby cabbages” (part of the cruciferous family of vegetables) and they contain vitamins and minerals that are essential to maintaining a strong, healthy body.  So eat up!