5 Bad Breakfast Foods

5 Bad Breakfast FoodsBreakfast is the most important meal of your day. Some people skip breakfast because they think it will help them to lose weight. But, research shows that eating breakfast can actually help people control their weight. However, this does not mean that your day should begin with foods loaded with sugar, fats and carbohydrates. Here are five breakfast foods you should avoid:

  1. Pastries. Doughnuts, Danish and muffins are loaded with sugar, fact, carbs and little else – there’s pretty much no nutritional value to these guys. Plus, while that sugar may give you a boost in the short-term, you’ll soon feel a crash that will leave you feeling sluggish for the rest of the day.
  2. Sugary cereals. Breakfast cereals can be a great way to pack in some fiber that will keep you feeling full, but be careful to read your labels well. Anything that’s multicolored or features marshmallows should be an automatic out, and watch out, too, for the ‘healthy’ options that are actually coated in sweet stuff. Heart-Healthy Recipe: Oatmeal Pancakes.
  3. Bagels. Except for the occasional 100 percent whole grain option, most bagels are 300 – 500 calories worth of starch. Slathering on cream cheese or butter adds more calories and saturated fat. Diets high in refined carbohydrates have been linked to increased risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
  4. Processed meats. The sky-high sodium in the highly processed sausage or bacon can make your blood pressure surge. If you have hypertension, it may raise your risk for stroke. Nitrates and nitrites found in processed meats such as sausage and bacon have been linked to increased risk of certain cancers, too.
  5. Energy bars. They’re full of protein and easy to reach for when you’re running late. So what’s the problem? The problem is that alongside all that energy-boosting protein, there is also a lot of fat and calories. If you don’t spend enough time each day to get rid of these extra fats and calories, your whole body is going to feel the extra pounds piling on. Morning Exercise Without Stress or Strain.

Normal or Not?

Blair Tolar MD Baptist Health PaducaLet’s be frank: Some women’s health problems are a little embarrassing to discuss. Blair Tolar, MD, an OB/GYN at Baptist Health Paducah, helps us understand what certain symptoms mean, when you should ask your doctor and what you can do.

Urinary Problems
A frequent urge to go, paired with pain while urinating, is most likely a urinary tract infection (UTI). While it will often pass on its own, sometimes a UTI is so uncomfortable you’ll want to see your doctor for treatment. “We can prescribe an antibiotic based on your health condition and the type of bacteria found that will make you feel better faster,” Dr. Tolar said. If your urinary problems include leaking or other symptoms, like pain during intercourse or backaches, Dr. Tolar recommends visiting a doctor right away. “There could be other possible gynecologic conditions that would require a visit to the doctor, such as pelvic organ prolapse.”

Itching or burning
Before you go running to the pharmacy for Monistat, make sure it’s actually a yeast infection you’re treating. “For most women, once you’ve had one, you can spot one,” Dr. Tolar said. “But if you’re unsure, you’ll want to see a doctor to rule out other possibilities, like bacterial vaginosis and sexually transmitted diseases.”

Unusual periods
Normal vaginal bleeding occurs as a result of a woman’s monthly menstrual cycle. Clots, thicker flows and darker colors are all often perfectly normal, but there are a number of issues that could cause changes in the thickness and texture of your flow. “A miscarriage, fibroids or hormonal shifts could all contribute to changes,” Dr. Tolar said. “And heavy or painful menstruation could be a sign of endometriosis.” If your period is unusually heavy or lasts eight to 10 days, talk to your doctor. “Luckily, treatment for endometriosis with minimally invasive surgery is a great option these days,” Dr. Tolar said.

In need of a doctor or specialist? We can help! Visit baptisthealthky.com to find a physician near you.

Crack Your Baby’s Crying Code

Baby Crying Sounds MeaningFor first time parents, it can be quite frustrating when your newborn cries and you don’t know why. By learning about the different types of cries, you can limit the guessing game, and maybe even go back to sleep quicker.

There are three main cries that you should become familiar with right away:

  • “I’m hungry, uncomfortable, hot, cold or need my diaper changed.” This cry is usually a semi-frantic and generally upset sound. Your crying baby is saying, “I need something to be done – right now, please.” It can mean anything from “I’m hungry” to “I need a new diaper.” Something is wrong, and you need to find out what it is. Breastfeeding Basics: Overcoming 3 Common Challenges.
  • “I’m tired and I don’t know what to do about it.” This baby cry is a softer, whinier version of the first. This is less of a call-to-action and more of an attempt to let you know how they are feeling. This cry may even sound as if they are genuinely sad. It is a heartbreaking sound, but it is generally more straightforward as to the cause and solution.
  • “I am in pain.” This cry is very important to recognize. It is shrill and more intense than both of the other cries. It has a much higher pitch and is communicating a sense of urgency. A baby crying in this way is more than likely in pain – you need to contact your doctor.

Once you master these different messages, the next step is learning how to calm your crying baby. Here are some simple ways that seem to work with most babies:

  • Walking: Changing the scenery diverts their attention. Pat their bottom as you walk around.
  • Talking: They love the sound of your voice. It doesn’t matter what you say, just how you say it. Soft tones are the most soothing.
  • Using a pacifier: The sucking motion is especially comforting to newborns. If they are not hungry, a pacifier might just do the trick.
  • Swaddling: It is thought that being wrapped up and held warmly and tightly simulates being in the womb, which is comforting for the baby.

Read more about taking care of your newborn.

Is Your Heart Aflutter? Learn the Sign of AFib to Prevent Heart Problems, Strokes

Healthy-HeartIf your heart’s aflutter, it might be more than just anxious anticipation, a stressful situation or overexertion. A frequent, irregular heartbeat or feeling of breathlessness could signal a serious medical condition.

Millions of people suffer from atrial fibrillation, the most common form of arrhythmia, or irregular heartbeat. Commonly called “AF or AFib,” this occurs when the heart’s upper chambers, the atria, contract very fast and irregularly (fibrillate) and do not pump blood efficiently to the rest of the body.

This month is American Heart Month, a good time to learn the signs and symptoms of AFib. If you suffer from the following, see your doctor for a simple physical exam or EKG (electrocardiogram). You can live with AFib, but if left untreated, it can lead to other rhythm problems, chronic fatigue, heart failure or even stroke.

What are the signs of atrial fibrillation? Here are some of the symptoms you may have:

  • Irregular and rapid heartbeat
  • Heart palpitations, fluttering or rapid thumping in the chest
  • Dizziness, sweating and chest pain or pressure
  • Shortness of breath or anxiety
  • General fatigue
  • Tiring more easily when exercising
  • Faintness, fainting or confusion

Treatment for AFib can include: taking medicines that return your heart to a normal rhythm, correction with an electric shock, a pacemaker, surgery or other procedures. Your doctor also may prescribe drugs to help prevent stroke.

Many signs of AFib could also be signs that you are having a heart attack. If you feel chest pain or pressure, or think you may be having a heart attack, get emergency help immediately by calling 911.

Learn more about atrial fibrillation and learn the signs of heart attack and stroke.

9 Tips for Staying Safe at Home

Tips for Making Your Home SafeAccording to the CDC, over a million people a year are seen in emergency departments as a result of falling. It’s important to create a safe environment at home to minimize the risk of falling and sustaining an injury.

  • Create clear, uncluttered pathways.
  • Remove throw rugs or install non-skid backing on them.
  • Move electrical cords out of walkways. Coil or tape cords next to walls to avoid having to walk over or around them.
  • Make sure handrails on stairs are sturdy. Install handrails on both sides if possible.
  • Rearrange items in your kitchen so that you can reach them easily.
  • Place a light near your bed where it is easy to reach.
  • Install lights on stairs and night lights in hallways.
  • Use grab bars in the tub or shower.
  • Put a non-slick mat or stick on strips in the floor of the tub or shower.

Making these changes to your environment will help to reduce your risk of falling.

Learn more about Baptist Health Home Care.

8 Ways to Work Out at Work

Ways to Work Out at WorkFinding time to exercise can be a challenge, especially if you work a 9 to 5 job. So why not work out at work? Here are eight ways to add exercise to your daily routine:

  1. Start with where you park. As long as it’s safe, park your car at the far end of the parking lot at work and continue on foot. If you use a parking garage, park on a lower level, climb the stairs to a higher level, and walk back down the ramp. If you ride the bus to work, get off a few blocks early and walk the rest of the way.
  2. Climb the corporate ladder. If you work in a building with more than one floor, you have a built-in office fitness center: the stairs. When you need to talk to a co-worker on another floor take the stairs instead of the elevator. Climbing stairs is an excellent office exercise to burn fat, tone muscle and get your heart pumping.
  3. Stand up for yourself. Standing burns more calories than sitting does. Stand while talking on the phone. Skip instant messaging and email, and instead walk to a co-worker’s desk for a face-to-face chat. 6 Ways to Stop ‘Sitting Disease.’
  4. Make yourself at home. Become familiar with the neighborhood around your workplace. During your lunch hour, stop at the drugstore or swing by the dry cleaner on foot instead of running these errands in your car on the weekend.
  5. Have a ball. Trade in your desk chair for a stability ball, as long as you’re able to safely balance on the ball. You’ll improve your balance and tone your core muscles, while sitting at your desk.
  6. Throw your weight around. Store resistance bands or small hand weights in your desk drawer or cabinet. Do arm curls between meetings or tasks. ‘Deskercise’ for the Office Bound.
  7. Join forces. Organize a lunchtime walking or group. Members can encourage and hold each other accountable for regular exercise.
  8. Walk and talk. When it’s practical, schedule walking meetings or walking brainstorming sessions.

Heart Healthy Recipe: Chicken Tetrazzini

Chicken Tetrazzini Healthy RecipeServes 4

Ingredients:

  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut in 1-inch strips (8oz.)
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. minced garlic
  • 1 c. sliced, fresh  or canned mushrooms
  • 3 T. flour
  • 1 1/2 c. chicken broth
  • 1 c. reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1 tsp. rosemary
  • 2 T. Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1/4 c. white wine
  • 1/2 chopped pimento (optional)
  • 1/4 c. slivered almonds
  • About 1/3 (16-oz.) box (2 c.) spaghetti or fettuccine noodles

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Saute chicken pieces in olive oil and garlic until no longer pink. Remove from skillet and place in 2-quart casserole dish. Add mushrooms ad flour to skillet, stirring to coat. Saute for 1 minute, add chicken broth, stirring until smooth. Cook over medium heat until slightly thickened. Stir in sour cream, rosemary, Parmesan cheese, wine and pimento. Continue to simmer for 1 minute. Add this mixture with cooked pasta to casserole dish with chicken. Stir to coat pasta. Sprinkle almonds over the top surface. Bake for 20 minutes, covered. Remove lid and continue to cook for 10 minutes.

Nutritional Information Per Serving: Calories: 323; Fat: 10g; Carbohydrates: 29g; Protein: 21g; Fiber: 1g; Sodium: 356mg.

7 Tips for Newborn Nail Care

Newborn Nail CareMost new moms are prepared for the many joyful, but challenging aspects of caring for a newborn baby — feeding, bathing, diaper-changes, mani-pedis. Mani-pedis?

An essential part of newborn care is keeping your baby’s nails trimmed. While a new baby’s nails are soft and flexible, they can be incredibly sharp if left ragged or too long. And because they can’t yet control their movements, babies are likely to scratch their own delicate faces.

As a new mother will soon learn, keeping up with the job can be demanding (and daunting). A newborn’s nails, particularly the fingernails, grow rapidly, and you will probably need to trim them at least once a week.

Here are some ways to make the task easier for you and for your baby:

  • If possible, use a nail file or emery board to smooth the nails.
  • When you need to trim, use nail clippers or scissors made especially for infants. Do NOT use adult-sized clippers.
  • The best time to trim is after a bath, when the nails are soft, or while your baby is asleep. If you do it while your baby is awake, have someone hold your baby while you trim.
  • Make sure you have plenty of light.
  • Press the finger pad away from the nail so you can get the clipper or scissors around both sides of the nail and avoid nicking the skin. Keep a firm hold on your baby’s hand as you clip.
  • Round fingernails at the corners to prevent sharp edges. Cut toenails straight across.
  • You may still need to use a file or emery board to smooth any sharp edges.

Some parents bite off their baby’s nails, but this could introduce germs into any small cut on your baby’s finger or toe. If you do nick your baby, don’t put a bandage on it — it could come off, and your baby could choke on it. Instead, rinse the cut under cool water and wrap a tissue around the finger or toe, holding it with a little pressure until the bleeding stops, usually within a few minutes.

Learn more about Baptist Health’s Mother & Baby Care. 

Make Healthy Popcorn at Home

Make Healthy Popcorn at HomeButtery, salty popcorn is not a healthy snack – it’s loaded with fats, sodium and unnecessary calories. That doesn’t mean all popcorn is bad – it can be a fast and nutritious snack. So before you pop in a DVD for family movie night, learn how to make healthy popcorn at home:

  • Pop the kernels yourself. Place about ¼ cup of plain popcorn kernels in a brown paper bag, roll the top closed and microwave the popcorn as you would commercial popcorn. Cook for about three minutes (or until popping slows down). If you want to make healthful popcorn on a regular basis, though, get an air popper. They pop the kernels more evenly and the popcorn often has a better flavor. Plus, there’s less risk of burning the popcorn in an air popper. Avoid microwave popcorn packets – there are still health concerns about added chemicals. What to Pick and What to Skip at the Movies.
  • Select your own seasoning. While you shouldn’t add salt or fats to your popcorn, you don’t have to eat it plain. Flavor your popcorn with healthful seasonings, such as garlic, cinnamon, hot paprika, curry powder, red pepper flakes or other spices. Use water instead of butter to help your toppings stick to the popcorn. Use a fine mist sprayer and spritz your popcorn lightly as you sprinkle on your healthy toppings. Skip These Six Salty Foods.
  • Stay with a serving size. While air-popped popcorn without salt or oil is low in calories and fat, you still need to limit your serving size. One 3-cup serving of air-popped popcorn has 93 calories, 1 gram of fat and 2 milligrams of sodium. By comparison, 3 cups of commercial microwave popcorn with oil has 192 calories, 14 grams of fat and 348 milligrams of sodium. If you add just 1/4 teaspoon of salt to your air-popped popcorn, its sodium content will skyrocket to 581 milligrams.

Did you know? An average bucket of movie theater popcorn with butter contains approximately 1,640 calories and 126 grams of fat!

Selecting the Right Home Care Provider

Home Health CareFirst ask your physician or other health care provided for recommendations of home care providers. Once you acquire the names of several providers, you will want to learn more about their services and reputations. Use this list of questions to learn about each agency. This insight will help you determine which agency would be best for you or your loved one.

  • How long has this agency been serving the community?
  • Does this agency provide information explaining its services, eligibility requirements, fees, and funding sources?
  • Who will evaluate the patient’s home care needs? What does this entail?
  • What is the physician’s role in home care?
  • Does the agency include the patient and his or her family members in developing the plan of care? Are they involved in making care plan changes?
  • Is the patient’s course of treatment documented, detailing the specific tasks to be carried out by each professional caregiver?
  • How does the agency educate family members on the care being administered to the patient?
  • How does this agency select and train its employees? Are there background checks?
  • Who can the patient and his or her family members call with questions or complaints? How does the agency follow up on and resolve problems?
  • What procedures does this provider have in place to handle emergencies? Are its caregivers available 24 hours a day, seven days a week?
  • How does this provider ensure patient confidentiality?

Learn more about Baptist Health Home Care.