How do I get my child to exercise?

By Brooke Strickland


With television, video games, and computers a huge part of kids’ lives today, getting them to be active can sometimes be a challenge. Getting your kids to engage in exercise activities may be easier than you think, though, and has been shown to help them gain a more positive body image, enhance their academic performance, and decrease violence or aggressive behavior. [1] So what are some easy ways to get your kids some much needed exercise? Here are some helpful tips to try!

*When you are shopping, park a little further away from the entrance and walk briskly with your kids into the store.

*Ride your bikes! This can be a fun family activity. Ride your bike to the library, to the grocery store, or to the park.

*Take your dog for a walk. A fun way to exercise you, your dog, and your kids!

*Learn some dances! Maybe you and your kids could take a dance class. Not only will it stimulate brain activity, but you and your kids will be able to bond. You don’t even need a class – crank up the music in your living room and dance those calories away!

*Hide and seek, anyone? This classic children’s game is a fun way to get some physical activity in.

*Outside games are fun!! Hopscotch, jump rope, and tag are just some of the many outside games your kids can play. Encourage them to get outside a little bit and run around!

*Weekend outings: Take a hike, ride your bikes around some local state parks, or pack a picnic lunch with Frisbees or footballs to throw around.

With the winter weather now upon us, outside activities might not always work. Even so, there are lots of inside activities that you can do to promote physical activity with your children. Indoor rock climbing centers or indoor swim parks are some ideas, while there are often gyms made just for kids.

And of course, if you want your kids to think exercising is fun, lead my example. Start making exercise a routine of your own and soon your kids will follow suit.

[1] Kids should get moving to avoid obesity. Accessed on the Web November 28, 2009.

New eye drops may help reverse glaucoma.

A new eye drop created by Italian researchers can help reverse glaucoma and its negative effects, while helping restore vision. The treatment is still experimental, but so far, the effects of the drug on lab rats have improved sight for those that had significant loss of vision due to advanced glaucoma. It is the first drug to show visual improvement for patients with advanced optic nerve damage. [1]

What are some of the symptoms of glaucoma? There are various forms of glaucoma out there. Many times a person will notice simply that their vision is impaired. Other symptoms can include blurred vision, severe pain in the eye, headache, haloes, nausea, and vomiting.

Glaucoma is one of America’s leading causes of blindness so finding ways to prevent the development of this debilitating eye problem are important. Sometimes heredity, age, and race are major factors for those who develop glaucoma, but there are some other ways you can help minimize your chance of developing this problem.

*Limit your exposure to physical and sports-related activities that could cause harm to your eyes. Sometimes eye injuries can damage the eye’s drainage system, and can lead to future issues.

*If you suffer from cardiovascular problems, ask your doctor about trying medicines to help lower your cholesterol that also can help reduce the risk of glaucoma.

*Ask your eye doctor about using prescription drops for the prevention of glaucoma.

*Regularly have your eyes checked. Frequent eye exams are important to helping your doctor to detect some of the warning signs for glaucoma and can help you get on top of it at an early stage.

*Keep your allergies controlled. If you are always allergic, rubbing your eyes because they itch, you could easily cause injury to your corneas without intending to. So, make sure to keep your allergies reigned in. Your eyes will benefit from it.

Our eyes are one of most valuable body parts, so remembering to take care of them to avoid potential eye diseases and other visual impairments in the future are very important.

[1] Health Discovery: New Drops May One Day Reverse Glaucoma. AARP Bulletin Today. Accessed on the Web November 13, 2009.

How can a new mom stay fit?

You've spent the last nine months growing your baby in the womb and preparing for the joyous birth of your newborn. But now that you are not pregnant anymore, it might be time to start thinking about getting back into shape and losing that extra “baby weight.” Research also shows that exercising shortly after the birth of your child can help reduce the development of postpartum depression. It might be best to start slow, as your body is recovering from a major event: the birth of another human being! If you are a new mom and you are looking for a way to start into an exercise routine, try some of these exercises. And of course, each birth is different, so be sure to check with your doctor to make sure he or she clears you for exercise activity.

*Walking: Walk briskly. Take your dog for a walk, or even better, bundle up baby and take them out in the stroller for a walk around a local park or your neighborhood.

*Light weight lifting: Lifting some arm weights can help tone your arms and get them in shape quickly!

*Yoga: This is not only a great way to engage your mind and body, but it can help you relax when the stress of having a new baby gets to you.

*Dance: This is fun to do with your baby in your arms! Turn up some of your favorite music and get moving. Your baby will probably enjoy it too!

You might not think you have time to work out with all of the demands of having a new baby in the house to take care of. But, there are many ways to fit in fitness to your life and new daily routines. Just set aside some time to make it happen and your body will be back in shape in only a short time.

How do I ease my asthma?


A study conducted out of the United Kingdom found that improved home ventilation that helps dehumidify the air may make it easier for people with asthma to breathe at night. The study followed 119 men and women over one year by retrofitting each home with humidity-lowering ventilation systems, while also steam-cleaning carpets, and replacing mattress covers and bedding to help clear dust mites. The participants were divided into groups – one group receiving active ventilation systems that exchanged indoor and outdoor air, and the other group which did not. Those individuals with the working ventilation systems had significant improvement in their evening breathing tests. [1]

Are you one of the millions of asthma sufferers? Whether minor or major, asthma is an uncomfortable condition that causes many a great deal of difficulties. Well, here are some other ways to help avoid those awful asthma flare-ups.

*Do not expose yourself to cigarette smoke, and try to stay away from log fires, open fireplaces, and wood stoves. The smokiness of the air can trigger asthma attacks.

*Try not to sleep with a full stomach, as stomach reflux can aggravate asthma.

*Food additives can often cause food allergies and can instigate an attack, so be aware of what you are eating.

*Breathe through your nose and not through your mouth during your workouts at the gym. Drying out your throat can cause asthma attacks.

If you are trying to find ways to help breathe easier, try one of these ways to you’re your life a little easier.


[1] Better ventilation may ease some asthma symptoms. Accessed on the Web November 14, 2009.

[2] 10 Natural Ways to Ease Asthma. Ezine articles. Accessed on the Web November 14, 2009.

Do clean teeth mean better health?

Clean teeth mean sharper thinking skills.  Doctors at the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York City discovered that good oral hygiene – meaning regular brushing and flossing of teeth and regular trips to the dentist for cleanings and check-ups – can benefit aging adults with their thinking skills. Researchers looked at adults age 60 and over and found that those that had the gum-disease causing pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis were three times more likely to have difficulty remembering a three-word sequence after a period of time. They found that 5.7 percent of the adults and trouble completing specific memory tasks and 6.5 percent failed reverse subtraction tests. [1]

My mother was a dental assistant, so growing up, our family was instilled with a strong regimen of brushing and flossing our teeth each day. To this day, I remember the importance of brushing my teeth after meals and if I don't, something feels slightly amiss. More and more today, there are news reports of the benefits of good oral hygiene, but what are some of the other proven benefits?

Oral cancer prevention: Your dentist will screen you for oral cancer during routine cleanings. This type of cancer is very curable if caught early.

Gum disease prevention: This is a very common problem for people who do not regularly brush, floss, or visit the dentist. It is one of the leading causes for adult tooth loss and can be treated easily if you make time to see your dentist.

Bad breath prevention: No one wants to have bad breath, so to avoid making people squirm or hold their noses when you talk, and make sure to brush and floss on a regular basis. Good oral hygiene is important to preventing bad breath, just like regular showers help prevent nasty body odor.

Positive general health: There have been numerous studies conducted on the effects of poor physical health with gum disease. There have been links made from heart attacks and strokes to gum disease, which shows the extreme importance to maintaining a clean mouth in order to keep your body functioning at its prime.

Bright smile: Maybe one of the most important reasons to keep your mouth healthy is to keep a shining smile for those around you. The face is often the first thing we remember about the people we meet, so keep your pearly whites spotless and bright.


1.  Trouble thinking? Better see the dentist. Accessed on the Web November 12, 2009.

2. Top 10 Reasons to Have a Dental Cleaning. Accessed on the Web November 12, 2009.