Wednesday, January 22, 2014
I saw this news back in December and just came across this article about it.
In a nutshell, here is what the new guidelines recommend:
among adults age 60 and older with high blood pressure, aim for a target blood pressure under 150/90.
among adults age 30 to 59 with high blood pressure, aim for a target blood pressure under 140/90
among adults with diabetes or chronic kidney disease, aim for a target blood pressure under 140/90.
Read the entire article to get the full picture. I'm 65 but still aiming for blood pressure below 120/80. I do think these new guidelines will help because I won't stress out if I'm a little high!
Also, I've read in several books on blood pressure, as well as on WebMD and the Mayo Clinic site, and in the instructions for every blood pressure monitor I've ever seen, that to properly take your blood pressure you should -
Sit quietly for 5 minutes. No talking, no moving. Even 2 or 3 minutes makes a difference. Try it, using your own BP monitor at home.
I also read that only 4% of doctors' offices abide by those instructions. Maybe that's why so many of us have "white coat syndrome", meaning that our BP is high when taken in the doctor's office.
At my clinic, a nurse comes out and calls your name, then you follow her down about 100 yds. of hallways. Of course, she's 19, busy, and walking as fast as she can. As soon as you reach the examining room, she plops you down in a chair and takes your blood pressure!
I talked to my doctor about it and once we were through with our examination time, he took my BP again, himself. Even with talking to him all that time, my BP was 40 points lower than when the nurse took it.
Just something to keep in mind.
Worrying too much about your BP can give you high blood pressure! LOL.
Saturday, January 04, 2014
Sydney helping her Mom make fresh salsa!
Don't those veggies look delicious? Low calorie, low fat, high nutrition!
You never heard anyone say, "I think you have too many veggies in your diet", did you?
Here's to a happy, healthy New Year!
Saturday, December 21, 2013
I have posted this here in past Christmases, so I apologize if anyone is getting tired of hearing it!
One year, after my sons had gone to live and work on their own and Christmas was approaching, I was looking around trying to think of what to buy my husband for Christmas. After I while I realized I was really trying hard to dream up a gift for him. I knew he’d be having an even harder time thinking of what to give me.
This got me to thinking about the whole meaning of giving and of Christmas. I’ll try not to make this terribly long, but this is the idea that came to me and what we actually did for Christmas that year -
My husband was a Game Warden. He often confiscated game killed illegally. What happens to it? We tried giving it to facilities like orphanages, but too many government and health regulations kept that from happening. So he always had a list of people he found who were down on their luck and needed food for their families. Most were country boys who could come retrieve the game and dress it and prepare it for eating. This included venison, wild duck, goose, quail, doves, sometimes fish.
Many of these people in our rural area supported their families off the land, too. They hunted and trapped and sold hides. So Jim would also stop when he saw a hide-bearing animal on the roadside - hit by a car - retrieve it and give it to someone so they could sell the hide. This little extra money made a big difference to some families.
Christmas was close and Jim found a huge raccoon that had been killed so he took it to the house of a construction worker who had hurt his back and was out of work. He knew the man would get a nice sum of money for it, enough to buy a few groceries for his wife and 5 kids. The next week Jim stopped by the man’s house and the kids came running out to greet him. One little boy said, “Mr. Jim. Thanks so much for the raccoon. We haven’t had meat in a long time.”
When Jim told me this, we were both horrified. These people were not only eating something most of us wouldn’t, it was a road kill, intended for the hide sale only. But they hadn’t wasted any of it! I’ve eaten roasted raccoon and it’s ok, but not what I look forward to having for dinner, and certainly not when it’s picked up off the roadside.
So here is the plan I put forward to my husband: This year we will not exchange gifts. We will use the money we would have spent on each other and we’ll buy groceries for this man’s family. The important parts of this are:
1. We are not just giving food to a poor family at Christmas. We are doing this instead of giving to each other. You and I will NOT exchange gifts.
2. We will not tell anyone about this.
A part of the Bible that has always made a huge impression on me is Matthew, Chapter 6, Vs 1-7. To put it in the vernacular - Do your good works in secret, don’t blow your own horn. You can read it here: tiny.cc/verse
There was a friend at our house when we were discussing this. He did not like the idea because this man was often arrested for one thing or another - misdemeanor crimes. Jim knew lots of people like this and helped them feed their families anyway. They knew if he caught them breaking the law, he’d take them to jail and then take some food to their families. We talked about it for a while and before he left, our friend added his own money to the contribution.
SO, on December 23rd, I left work early and went to the grocery store. I mentally prepared meals for that family of parents and 5 children - 7 days worth, and bought everything that would be needed to prepare them all. That included a turkey dinner for Christmas day and dessert and candy for the kids. I had more than one grocery cart filled. Christmas Eve morning Jim delivered the entire load, including cash we had collected from our friend. I didn’t go.
He came home crying. The gratitude of the entire family just overwhelmed him. It overwhelmed me, too. The father came to our house later to thank me himself and tell me how hard times had been and what this meant to his family. I can’t tell you the deep joy that filled me that Christmas. It was THE most wonderful Christmas I ever had. It became a tradition I repeated many times, but that first time was the most awesome.
So why am I telling you about this now? I want you, most of all, to hear the SEQUEL. The very next year, this man and his family were in better shape. He came to our house again, to let us know that he and his family were doing the same thing for someone they knew that was in bad shape! He was so thankful to us, not only for the gift of food and money, but for the gift of the GIFT. Of seeing the GIFT in action. I went on to hear, in subsequent years, how the GIFT was being passed on, throughout a community of working poor, and yes, people who were often in our jail for one thing or another. Still people with families to feed and needs to be met.
Even though we didn’t tell anyone what we did, the word spread around, mostly through a community of people that most good citizens ignored or wouldn’t associate with. I still hear about it now and then, 25 yrs later. I certainly still reap benefits un-imagined from it. The memory of that first time still gives me chills.
That’s my Christmas Story.
Friday, December 13, 2013
My GD Megan practicing her Scorpion!
Youth is a beautiful thing, isn't it?
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