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Mammogram anxiety

HEA-mammogram

Confronting fear of a routine mammogram 

(BPT) Every October, women everywhere are reminded about the importance of early breast cancer detection and annual mammograms. While women know mammograms are key in the fight against the disease, many are plagued with mammogram anxieties that may actually be preventing them from undergoing the test. Here are some tips from WESTMED Medical Center on how these women can confront and deal with mammogram anxiety.

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Five simple time-tested tips for aging well

HEA-Aging-well(BPT) – A health renaissance is taking place in America as more people are embracing aging well and being proactive rather than reactive about their well-being. Prevention has become the focus, and many aging Americans are turning to time-tested methods for keeping their bodies and minds healthy so they can live longer, higher-quality lives.

Kristen Johnson, certified personal trainer, registered dietician and nutrition expert at www.ontargetliving.com points out five time-tested strategies for aging well:

Daily exercise

“Daily movement is the real fountain of youth. It keeps us healthy from the inside out,” says Johnson.

She notes that quality over quantity is what really matters.

“When it comes to improving overall fitness, high-intensity exercise for a short amount of time may be much more beneficial than low intensity for a long amount of time,” Johnson says. “Research suggests that fat-burning hormones like human growth hormones and testosterone are stimulated by high-intensity exercise, while fat-storing hormones like cortisol may be lowered. Try increasing the intensity and frequency of your exercise, while decreasing the time spent.”

Superfoods

The foods you eat influence how you look and feel, from glowing and confident to lethargic and sick. Selecting foods that people have eaten historically as nutritional powerhouses can help boost overall wellness.

“Superfoods are nutrient-rich foods, such as fruits, vegetables, ancient grains, healthy fats and lean proteins,” says Johnson. “These foods naturally contain high amounts of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, which all contribute to healthy aging.”

A few to focus on:

  • Carrots, squash and sweet potatoes are extremely beneficial for eye and skin health, thanks to high levels of beta-carotene, a type of vitamin A.
  • Any brightly colored fruits and vegetables will have an abundant amount of antioxidants, and these help prevent oxidation and cell damage. Examples: raspberries, kale and cabbage.
  • Carbohydrates like healthy grains, beans and potatoes help you produce serotonin, a calming and satiety hormone that helps fight stress and anxiety’s negative effects.

Nutrients

Supplements help fill nutritional gaps, especially as the aging body requires greater amounts of certain vitamins and minerals. Johnson points out the importance of omega-3s for aging well.

“Omega-3 fats are essential for getting you healthy from the inside out, all while helping improve hormonal balance, brain health, weight loss and metabolism,” she says. “Omega-3 fats are also extremely helpful for healthy skin, hair and nails.”

Her favorite? Nordic Naturals Cod Liver Oil. “This contains EPA and DHA, both of which contribute to a healthy heart and brain,” she says. “Cod liver oil also helps improve cellular function, energy and mood. Did you know cod liver oil can actually taste good? Try their delicious orange flavor.”

Sleep

“Chronic lack of sleep is one of the fastest ways to age the human body,” Johnson says. “Lack of sleep can have a huge impact on the appearance of skin, causing fine lines, wrinkles and dark under-eye circles. Not getting enough sleep can also cause your body to release a stress hormone called cortisol.”

She notes that adequate sleep can positively influence cognitive ability, mood, weight loss and skin rejuvenation, so it should be a top priority for an aging-well routine. While the right amount of sleep will vary between individuals, the goal for most adults is around 7 to 8 hours a night.

Social activity

Human interaction can decrease as people age, but it’s more important than ever to form and maintain bonds with others. Participating in social activity is a fun way to enjoy life and reap real health benefits.

“The American Medical Association has noted that stress is the basic cause for more than 60 percent of all human illnesses and diseases,” says Johnson. ‘”When you are socially active and surround yourself with people you enjoy, you may be less likely to feel lonely, unhappy, or unfulfilled, all of which can cause unwanted stress.”

Finally, there’s no need to become overwhelmed; start an aging-well routine by taking one small step and building healthy habits over time. This is what will lead to long-term success.

“Remember that it’s never too late to start living a healthy and happy life,” Johnson says. “Give yourself more reasons to smile and laugh! Did you know research suggests that happy people live longer, healthier and more fulfilling lives?”

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Why Water is Your Workout Buddy

 

HEA-Water-is-your-workout-buddy2

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

(Family Features) If you think drinking water during a workout is just about keeping your mouth from drying out as you pant your way through each set, think again. In addition to keeping you comfortable, staying hydrated is a necessary aspect of any healthy workout.

Your body is composed of 60 percent water, but on average, you lose 2-5 percent of your body weight from water loss every time you work out.

Once you get into your workout groove, you may find it hard to stop, even for a water break. What you may not realize is that water is an essential nutrient that keeps your muscles primed, blood flowing and the nerves in your brain firing. Taking a break to replace what you lose while exercising is actually a good way to keep your workout going.

The evaporation of sweat helps cool the body during exercise, but this diminishing hydration can lead to poor performance and even possible injury. Make the most of your workout and stay fit with these helpful hydration tips from the Army National Guard’s Guard Your Health campaign:

  • Cool, plain water is the best drink to replace the fluid lost as sweat and help regulate your core body temperature.
  • Plan to drink water before, during and after exercise to prevent dehydration and help enhance performance. Sip a 16-ounce bottle of water every hour while working out.
  • Outdoor workouts require extra hydration, even during cooler weather. The water content in your skin helps it perform its protective functions, including limiting damage from the sun. Make sure to drink plenty of water before, during and after any time spent in the sun.
  • Learn to recognize signs of dehydration, so you can take steps to reverse it. Early signs include muscle cramps and fatigue, while a dry mouth, headaches, dizziness, slurred speech and confusion all signal advancing dehydration. If your extremities become swollen or you become feverish, medical attention is necessary.
  • Another way to check your hydration level is by monitoring your urination. Urine should be clear or light yellow, and you should urinate every two to four hours.
  • If you find yourself dehydrated and water isn’t available, a melon, orange, celery, cucumber or bell pepper can help replenish your body’s water content.
  • Make it a post-workout practice to replenish electrolytes with a banana, dates or coconut water.
  • It’s important for everyday health to keep well-hydrated away from the gym, too. Staying properly hydrated helps regulate your body temperature, weight and mood. Keep a refillable bottle of water with you wherever you go, and if you need a touch of flavor, add lemon, lime, pineapple or cucumber for a refreshing twist. Aim to drink 50-75 percent of your body weight in ounces of water each day to stay hydrated.

For more health-related tools and information, visit www.guardyourhealth.com.

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Helpful tips to protect your hearing

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

(Family Features)

Not only can noise distract, disturb and interfere with communication and sleep, it can affect your performance, behavior and hearing.

In many cases, hearing loss can be prevented by recognizing sources of damaging noise levels and using appropriate protective equipment. However, excessive noise exposure can cause permanent hearing loss that cannot be treated with medication, or result in constant ringing in your ears called tinnitus. Impaired hearing can reduce your ability to recognize your surroundings and listen for cues of potential danger.

HEA-Hearing2Learn how to protect yourself from future hearing damage with this advice from Guard Your Health, a health education campaign by the Army National Guard:

  • Know the safe volume limit to protect yourself from future hearing damage. Noise that is 0 to 80 decibels is generally safe, while noise that is 140 to 200 decibels can be dangerous.
  • Noise that exceeds safe parameters, even if it’s under 140 decibels, can still cause damage to your hearing over time. A general rule of thumb is the “three feet rule.” If you have to shout to someone who is three feet away (about an arm’s length), the noise level in that location could be damaging.
  • Be aware that a single exposure to a very loud sound (such as weapon fire) can cause permanent hearing loss.
  • Using proper hearing protection for the environment can help prevent damage to your eardrum and hearing. There are several types of hearing protection devices available including foam earplugs, silicone earplugs and earmuffs. For example, when shooting at the gun range, noise-activated earplugs can help you avoid sudden eardrum rupture.
  • Foam earplugs should be pinched when inserted, allowing the foam to expand in your ear until you achieve a tight, non-painful seal. Silicone earplugs should be inserted only until you feel a slight resistance to avoid damaging your inner ear. To wear ear plugs properly, straighten your ear by gripping the cartilage and stretching it away from your body. Insert the earplug then release your ear. Do a few jumping jacks to test the security of the earplugs; if they fall out, try again or get a smaller size.
  • Earmuffs should rest about two finger widths from your jawbone and completely cover your ears for a tight seal on the side of your face.

If you notice signs of hearing problems, ask your doctor to test your hearing. Common symptoms include a muffled sound in your ears after leaving a noisy area or event such as a car race, concert, wood working or hunting; prolonged ringing or buzzing in your ears after exposure to noise; and difficulty understanding what people are saying although you can hear them talking.

For more health-related tools and information, visit guardyourhealth.com.

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Back-to-School with grief  

Going back to school can be especially challenging for a child who has recently lost a loved one. Hospice of Michigan encourages parents and educators to understand the signs of childhood grief and then take steps to allow children the chance to grieve in a healthy, productive way.

Going back to school can be especially challenging for a child who has recently lost a loved one. Hospice of Michigan encourages parents and educators to understand the signs of childhood grief and then take steps to allow children the chance to grieve in a healthy, productive way.

While most kids will carry backpacks with books and school supplies when they return to the classroom, others will carry a much heavier and often invisible burden: the grief of losing a loved one.

“Going back to school can be especially challenging for a child coping with grief,” said Karen Monts, director of grief support services at Hospice of Michigan. “If a child has recently lost a parent, it can be difficult to hear other children talking about their families. And while father-daughter dances and grandparents day are special and fun-filled events, they can be painful reminders of loss to a grieving child.”

According to the Coalition to Support Grieving Students, approximately one in 20 U.S. children will lose a parent by the time they reach the age of 16. The vast majority of children experience a significant loss of a friend or relative by the time they complete high school. Monts encourages parents of a grieving child to reach out to the child’s school and alert staff to a recent death in the family. She also urges educators to equip themselves to help students suffering from grief. Books, websites and blogs about children and grief can all be great resources; www.kidsgrief.org is a good place to start.

“Grief isn’t something children can leave at home; it will follow them to school and they may turn to their teacher for help,” Monts said. “Teachers should have a private discussion with the student when he or she returns to school. Just having the conversation can validate and normalize the grieving child’s feelings. The teacher and guardian should also ask if it’s OK to let the class know about the death the student is coping with. The teacher can explain that while discussing the recent death with the class might be uncomfortable, it will make things easier in the long run.”

Monts warns that it can be difficult to recognize a child struggling with grief because it’s often a feeling young children in particular can’t verbalize. Instead, feelings of grief in children typically come out in behaviors and actions. Some signs that a child might be having a hard time coping include:

  • Persistent feelings of sadness
  • Spending a lot of time alone
  • Loss of interest in activities
  • Increasingly anxious about being left alone
  • Regression to a previous stage of development
  • Problems sleeping or change in appetite
  • Falling grades or refusal to go to school
  • Frequent tearful outbursts
  • Constantly imitating or repeatedly stating that he or she wants to join the deceased

If educators recognize these symptoms in students, they should alert a parent or guardian. There are also things a teacher can do to help a student suffering from grief, including:

  • Comfort the child by being patient, spending extra time and letting the student know he or she is not alone.
  • Acknowledge the child’s loss and grief.
  • Listen, which can validate the child’s feelings, and make sure the child isn’t taking responsibility for the death.
  • Explain that strong feelings of sadness, fear, anger, etc. are normal and encourage the child to express these feelings.

If symptoms become severe, the school, parent or guardian might consider involving a social worker or counselor.

While school can present additional challenges for a grieving child, Monts explains that it can also be an escape. “When a family experiences a significant loss, life at home can become very sad and school can be a great diversion,” Monts said. “This is especially true if the classroom is a healthy place and the teacher has created a caring atmosphere that allows the child to share their feelings in a non-judgmental environment.”

Grief is a personal and individual experience that takes place over time. While it may take some children years to work through their grief, Monts explains that by working together, parents and educators can provide children with a better opportunity to grieve in a healthy, productive way.

Hospice of Michigan partners with other organizations and offers a variety of grief support and educational services, including individual visits, support groups and educational programs. Our services are available to all families involved with Hospice of Michigan as well as the community at large. For more information on any of the services we offer, visit www.hom.org.

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Spectrum Health United Hospital unveils new MRI unit 

 

New MRI provides patients with faster exams, excellent images, and an open concept that reduces claustrophobia

Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) exams—non-invasive  diagnostic imaging exams of soft tissue, bone and muscles—have become one of the fastest growing types of medical diagnostic tests in the United States. With Spectrum Health’s recent installation of a MAGNETOM® Aera 1.5T Open Bore MRI system, patients can now experience faster, more comfortable exams without leaving Greenville.

“United’s new MRI scanner is the latest technology available, one of the most advanced in West Michigan. It will allow us to perform more types of scans closer to home, where people really need us most,” said Dave DeBoode, Director of Clinical Diagnostics at Spectrum Health United Hospital.

Benefits of the MAGNETOM Aera 1.5T Open Bore include:

  • Superb image quality that may be used for a wide range of medical needs, from orthopedic and sports-related injuries to breast cancer testing, and can help physicians make quicker, more accurate diagnoses.
  • The tube-like structure of an MRI machine (where the patient lies during the imaging process) is larger and can accommodate patients up to 550 pounds.
  • The system’s ultra-short bore (145 cm) can help to alleviate concerns of claustrophobia since many exams can be performed with the patient’s head outside of the bore.
  • Mood lighting on the system, which can help create a calming environment for patients in the examination room.

“The new MRI unit is state of the art and it is an open magnet which allows us to accommodate more patients, said John Merchun, MD, Advanced Radiology Services, Spectrum Health United Hospital. “The newly constructed addition to the hospital that houses the magnet is both functional and beautiful. We will also be able to add new services in the near future such as breast and cardiac MRI. We are well equipped to serve the needs of the community for years to come.”

To schedule an appointment for an MRI or any other diagnostic imaging performed at United Hospital (including x-ray, Computerized Tomography (CT), ultrasound, digital mammography, nuclear medicine, breast biopsy, or bone densitometry), call 616.225.9090.

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State of Michigan launches aging website 

 

Older Michiganders will now have quick and easy access to information on services in their area through a new website at www.michigan.gov/aging. The site was developed by the Aging & Adult Services Agency (AASA) within the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS), and in partnership with the Michigan Department of Management and Budget (DTMB).

“The state, in partnership with local aging agencies and service providers, offers numerous high-quality programs and services that can help older adults maintain their independence as they age,” said AASA Director Kari Sederburg. “The state’s new aging website was developed to be the best place to go to quickly find out what types of services are available, and which agency you need to call to see if you qualify.”

As part of his special message on aging in 2014, Gov. Rick Snyder charged AASA, and DTMB with the task of creating an aging website to easily connect residents with local aging programs and services.

“This new website is another step toward achieving Governor Snyder’s overall mission of creating a citizen-centric government,” said DTMB Director and State Chief Information Officer David Behen. “This one site will quickly connect older Michiganders with services they need, without having to navigate through multiple government agencies.”

The state’s aging website has been in development over the past several months and required a collaborate effort between several key state departments that interact with the state’s aging programs and services. This comprehensive team held focus groups to ensure the website organized aging programs and services in a thoughtful manner, and that it was built with the user experience firmly in mind.

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Good news about high blood pressure

 

HEA-High-blood-pressureNine out of 10 people can control it but only half do

(BPT) – There is some really good news about high blood pressure that you simply must hear.

“This silent killer can be prevented, and in the majority of patients who already have high blood pressure, it can be controlled,” says Dr. George Mensah, director of the Center for Translation Research and Implementation Science at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), part of the National Institutes of Health. “Our research supports these two facts.”

Recent studies suggest that 9 out of 10 people with high blood pressure can control it; however, only about half of the people in the United States with high blood pressure do.

“We need to understand, develop, and scale up strategies to support patients and their health care providers to achieve higher control rates,” says Dr. Mensah. Many lives can be saved by controlling high blood pressure rates, according to Dr. Mensah. For example, effectively controlling high blood pressure in 10 percent more patients can save about 14,000 lives every year in the United States.

Work must also be done to prevent high blood pressure in children. Most babies and children have normal blood pressure. In fact, 90 percent of girls and 80 percent of boys in the United States have healthy blood pressure levels. “This is good news because if prevention begins in childhood, we have the greatest chance of most children growing into adulthood without developing high blood pressure,” says Dr. Mensah.

Anyone, including children and teens, can develop high blood pressure. The risk of developing high blood pressure increases with advancing age. And although high blood pressure is more common in African Americans, it can develop in anyone, regardless of race, ethnicity, or gender.

In most people, a specific cause of high blood pressure cannot be identified. Factors associated with high blood pressure include a family history of high blood pressure; a diet high in salt; not enough exercise; stress; some sleep disorders; and drinking too much alcohol. It is important to talk with your health care provider if you have any of these factors. Everyone should:

* Follow a healthy diet. Limit the amount of salt and alcohol that you consume. The NHLBI’s Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) eating plan promotes healthy eating.

* Be active. Regular physical activity can lower high blood pressure and reduce your risk for other health problems.

* Maintain a healthy weight. Staying at a healthy weight can help you control high blood pressure and reduce your risk for other health problems.

* Learn to manage and cope with stress. Learning how to manage stress, relax and cope with problems can improve your overall health.

* Check your blood pressure. The test is easy and painless and can be done at a health care provider’s office or clinic. Your health care provider can tell you how often you should be tested.

* Know your family history. Figure out if a blood relative such as a mother, father, sister, or brother has or had high blood pressure. This will help you determine if you are at a higher risk of developing it.

Many people who adopt these healthy lifestyle habits may prevent high blood pressure or delay its onset. And if you have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, it is important that you work with your health care provider for lifelong blood pressure control and follow your treatment plan closely. Early and ongoing treatment may help you avoid heart attack, heart failure, stroke, kidney failure and other high blood pressure-related problems.

“It is important to continue research that will inform us on how to get high blood pressure controlled in everyone,” says Dr. Mensah. “NHLBI-supported research on high blood pressure has led to many advances in medical knowledge and health care. Much of this research depends on the willingness of volunteers to participate in clinical trials. Clinical trials test new ways to prevent, diagnose or treat various diseases and conditions such as high blood pressure.”

To learn more about high blood pressure and how to prevent and control the condition, visit NHLBI’s website: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/hbp. And to learn more about DASH, visit: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/dash.

For more information about clinical trials related to hypertension and the ways you can get involved, visit: http://clinicalresearch.nih.gov.

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Eight tips for a healthy pregnancy

HEA-Tips-for-healthy-pregnancy

(BPT) – Did you know that every single minute in the United States a baby is born too early? That’s approximately 450,000 born too early each year. A pregnant woman’s good health, both physical and emotional, is essential to the health of her baby. You can boost your own chances of having a full-term pregnancy and a healthy baby by following a few tips and by learning more about the important development of your baby, even during the final weeks of a full-term pregnancy.

1. Get early prenatal care

Early prenatal care is important for you and your baby. As soon as you find out you’re pregnant, contact your health care provider to schedule your first prenatal visit. During that appointment you’ll get advice for a healthy pregnancy and be screened for risk factors associated with preterm birth.You can also visit GrowthYouCantSee.com for a checklist of risk factors and example questions to bring with you to help guide the conversation with your health care provider.

2. Make every bite count 

What you eat is a key part of pregnancy health. Your baby absorbs everything you eat, so good nutrition is not only essential for your own good health but also for your baby’s growth and development. Make sure you eat a well-balanced, healthy diet and drink plenty of fluids to help ensure both your good health and your baby’s.

3. Manage stress

Bringing a baby into the world is no easy task. Pregnancy can be nerve-wracking and it’s normal to feel stressed. However, too much stress can cause health problems and increase a woman’s chances for preterm birth – delivering a baby before 37 weeks or more than three weeks prior to the due date. Taking care of your emotional health by learning to manage stress makes for a healthier pregnancy and is an essential part of taking care of your baby.

4. Exercise regularly

Maintaining a regular exercise routine throughout your pregnancy is important for your general health and can help you prepare for labor. Exercise is also a great way to reduce stress and help you feel your best. The American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) recommends at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise on most, if not all, days of the week, unless you have a medical or pregnancy complication. Talk to your health care provider about your fitness routine during pregnancy to keep you and your baby safe.

5. Get plenty of rest

When you’re pregnant, discomfort can make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep. Maintaining a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and managing stress can all help improve sleep during pregnancy. Relaxation techniques, such as yoga or a warm bath before bed, may also help you fall asleep. If you’re unable to sleep well at night, try resting more during the day.

6. Change your habits

Healthy lifestyle choices directly impact the health of a growing baby and certain habits can cause lifelong health problems for your baby. In particular, smoking, drinking alcohol and using street drugs (also called illegal or illicit drugs) can restrict a baby’s growth and increase the chances for preterm birth. Avoiding substances such as nicotine, alcohol and other street drugs during pregnancy gives your baby the time he or she needs to grow and develop. If you need help to quit, talk with your doctor.

7. Learn about the signs and symptoms of preterm labor 

Help protect your baby by familiarizing yourself with the signs and symptoms of preterm labor, which can lead to preterm birth, so you can proactively discuss them with your health care provider. Visit GrowthYouCantSee.com to learn more.

8. Enjoy this special time 

Forty weeks sounds like a long time, but you won’t be pregnant for forever. Enjoy this special time in your life with family and friends.

There’s a lot of growth that happens in your baby, even in the last few weeks of pregnancy leading up to your due date.

For more information on the risks of preterm birth and the benefits of a full-term pregnancy, visit GrowthYouCantSee.com.

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Lose weight with tools from the USDA and NIH

 

Science-based technology provides users greater customizing to help reach and sustain a healthy weight

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) have partnered to add the NIH Body Weight Planner to USDA’s SuperTracker online tool (https://www.supertracker.usda.gov) as a goal-setting resource to help people achieve and stay at a healthy weight.

Created in 2011, the SuperTracker tool empowers people to build a healthier diet, manage weight, and reduce risk of chronic disease. Users can determine what and how much to eat; track foods, physical activities, and weight; and personalize with goal setting, virtual coaching, and journaling. With science-based technology drawing on years of research, the Body Weight Planner will enable SuperTracker’s more than 5.5 million registered users to tailor their plans to reach a goal weight during a specific timeframe, and maintain that weight afterward.

The math model behind the Body Weight Planner, an online tool published by NIH in 2011, was created to accurately forecast how body weight changes when people alter their diet and exercise habits. This capability was validated using data from multiple controlled studies in people.

“We originally intended the Body Weight Planner as a research tool, but so many people wanted to use it for their own weight management that we knew we needed to adapt it with more information about how to achieve a healthy lifestyle,” said Kevin Hall, Ph.D., who led creation of the Planner and is a senior investigator at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the NIH. “The Planner is a natural fit within the SuperTracker as it lets people accurately determine how many calories and how much exercise is needed to meet their personal weight-management goals.”

The Planner’s calculations reflect the discovery that the widely accepted paradigm that reducing 3,500 calories will shed one pound of weight does not account for slowing of metabolism as people change their diet and physical activities. More recently, the math model was further validated using data from a two-year calorie restriction study of 140 people. With those data, Hall and colleagues showed the model can also provide accurate measurements of calorie intake changes by tracking people’s weight. Researchers are examining how to apply this method for public use.

“We are pleased to offer a variety of interactive tools to support Americans in making healthy lifestyle changes,” said Angie Tagtow, executive director of USDA’s Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, which created and manages SuperTracker. “The NIH Body Weight Planner helps consumers make a plan to reach their goals on their timeline, and SuperTracker helps them achieve it.”

More than two-thirds of American adults are overweight or obese. Maintaining a healthy weight can help prevent complications related to overweight and obesity such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, some of the leading causes of preventable death.

“NIH’s collaboration with USDA allows the public to quickly reap the benefits of the latest medical research results,” said NIDDK Director Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D. “Sharing resources and expertise lets us get out important information as efficiently as possible, empowering people to take charge of their weight and their health.”

The NIDDK, a component of the NIH, conducts and supports research on diabetes and other endocrine and metabolic diseases; digestive diseases, nutrition and obesity; and kidney, urologic and hematologic diseases. Spanning the full spectrum of medicine and afflicting people of all ages and ethnic groups, these diseases encompass some of the most common, severe and disabling conditions affecting Americans. For more information about the NIDDK and its programs, see www.niddk.nih.gov.

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