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National Milk Day Part 2

National Milk Day Part 2

Milk has an impressive nutritional profile. By design, it is meant to nourish newborn animals, so it has to be full of many beneficial components. Milk is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, including “nutrients of concern,” which are under-consumed by many populations.

It provides potassium, B12, calcium and vitamin D, which are lacking in many diets. Milk is also a good source of vitamin A, magnesium, zinc and thiamine (B1). Additionally, it’s an excellent source of protein and contains hundreds of different fatty acids, including conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and omega-3s. Conjugated linoleic acid and omega-3 fatty acids are linked to many health benefits, including a reduced risk of diabetes and heart disease.

The nutritional content of milk varies, depending on factors like its fat content and the diet and treatment of the cow it came from. For example, milk from cows that eat mostly grass contains significantly higher amounts of conjugated linoleic acid and omega-3 fatty acids. Also, organic and grass-fed cow’s milk contains higher amounts of beneficial antioxidants, such as vitamin E and beta-carotene, which help reduce inflammation and fight oxidative stress.

It is widely known that milk is a rich source of protein. Just one cup contains 8 grams of clean protein. Protein is necessary for many vital functions in your body, including growth and development, cellular repair and immune system regulation. Milk is considered a “complete protein,” meaning it contains all nine of the essential amino acids necessary for your body to function at an optimal level.

There are two main types of protein found in milk — casein and whey protein. Both are considered high-quality proteins. Casein makes up the majority of the protein found in cow’s milk, comprising 70–80% of the total protein content. Whey accounts for around 20%. Whey protein contains the branched-chain amino acids leucine, isoleucine and valine, all of which are linked to health benefits.

Research suggests that consuming milk can be especially beneficial for seniors. Drinking milk is associated with a lower risk of age-related muscle loss in several studies. Branched-chain amino acids may be particularly helpful in building muscle, preventing muscle loss and providing fuel during exercise. In fact, higher consumption of milk and milk products has been linked to greater whole-body muscle mass and better physical performance in older adults.

Drinking milk has long been associated with healthy bones. This is due to its powerful combination of nutrients, including calcium, phosphorus, potassium, protein and (in grass-fed, full-fat dairy) vitamin K2. All of these nutrients are essential for maintaining strong, healthy bones. Milk is an excellent source of the nutrients your body relies on to properly absorb calcium, including vitamin D, vitamin K, phosphorus and magnesium.

Another reason why drinking milk is important for seniors is because adding milk and dairy products to your diet may prevent bone diseases like osteoporosis. Studies have linked milk and dairy to a lower risk of osteoporosis and fractures, especially in older adults. Evidence suggests that eating more protein may protect against bone loss, especially in women who do not consume enough dietary calcium.

Milk can be an excellent choice for elderly folks who have trouble swallowing solid foods. It provides plenty of nutrients, while being easy to consume. Also, sometimes older adults lose weight due to health conditions or from the natural process of aging (in later years people’s appetites tend to decrease). Milk is a great go-to to help with this. Whole milk can help promote weight gain in a healthy way due to its higher fat content and high level of nutrients.

So raise a glass of milk to this nutrient-rich beverage! Private Home Health Care encourages you to drink your serving of milk today, and don’t be shy about a milk mustache!

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National Milk Day

National Milk Day

Milk has an impressive nutritional profile. By design, it is meant to nourish newborn animals, so it has to be full of many beneficial components.

Milk is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, including “nutrients of concern,” which are under-consumed by many populations.

It provides potassium, B12, calcium and vitamin D, which are lacking in many diets. Milk is also a good source of vitamin A, magnesium, zinc and thiamine (B1). Additionally, it’s an excellent source of protein and contains hundreds of different fatty acids, including conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and omega-3s. Conjugated linoleic acid and omega-3 fatty acids are linked to many health benefits, including a reduced risk of diabetes and heart disease.

The nutritional content of milk varies, depending on factors like its fat content and the diet and treatment of the cow it came from. For example, milk from cows that eat mostly grass contains significantly higher amounts of conjugated linoleic acid and omega-3 fatty acids. Also, organic and grass-fed cow’s milk contains higher amounts of beneficial antioxidants, such as vitamin E and beta-carotene, which help reduce inflammation and fight oxidative stress

It is widely known that milk is a rich source of protein. Just one cup contains 8 grams of clean protein. Protein is necessary for many vital functions in your body, including growth and development, cellular repair and immune system regulation. Milk is considered a “complete protein,” meaning it contains all nine of the essential amino acids necessary for your body to function at an optimal level.

There are two main types of protein found in milk — casein and whey protein. Both are considered high-quality proteins. Casein makes up the majority of the protein found in cow’s milk, comprising 70–80% of the total protein content. Whey accounts for around 20%. Whey protein contains the branched-chain amino acids leucine, isoleucine and valine, all of which are linked to health benefits.

Research suggests that consuming milk can be especially beneficial for seniors. Drinking milk is associated with a lower risk of age-related muscle loss in several studies. Branched-chain amino acids may be particularly helpful in building muscle, preventing muscle loss and providing fuel during exercise. In fact, higher consumption of milk and milk products has been linked to greater whole-body muscle mass and better physical performance in older adults.

Drinking milk has long been associated with healthy bones. This is due to its powerful combination of nutrients, including calcium, phosphorus, potassium, protein and (in grass-fed, full-fat dairy) vitamin K2. All of these nutrients are essential for maintaining strong, healthy bones. Milk is an excellent source of the nutrients your body relies on to properly absorb calcium, including vitamin D, vitamin K, phosphorus and magnesium.

Another reason why drinking milk is important for seniors is because adding milk and dairy products to your diet may prevent bone diseases like osteoporosis. Studies have linked milk and dairy to a lower risk of osteoporosis and fractures, especially in older adults. Evidence suggests that eating more protein may protect against bone loss, especially in women who do not consume enough dietary calcium.

Milk can be an excellent choice for elderly folks who have trouble swallowing solid foods. It provides plenty of nutrients, while being easy to consume. Also, sometimes older adults lose weight due to health conditions or from the natural process of aging (in later years people’s appetites tend to decrease). Milk is a great go-to to help with this. Whole milk can help promote weight gain in a healthy way due to its higher fat content and high level of nutrients.

So raise a glass of milk to this nutrient-rich beverage! Private Home Health Care encourages you to drink your serving of milk today, and don’t be shy about a milk mustache!

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Seniors Can Safely Cuddle Up With Therapy Pets

There are so many benefits to cuddling. However, it is difficult to do if you live alone. Many seniors struggle with loneliness and isolation, and they may lack someone to cuddle with or the connection of human touch. Having someone or something to cuddle with is an antidote to loneliness and isolation. Private Home Health Care loves these adorable robot pets that look real! Seniors can still benefit from connecting with a pet, but without having to deal with the stress. 

When you cuddle, your body releases a hormone called oxytocin that calms you and makes you more likely to deal better with stress. For example, you might laugh, distract yourself, or try to solve a problem. It also can lower your blood pressure and lower levels of the “stress hormone” cortisol, which also can help. For the elderly, the less stress, the better. Sometimes seniors may be more sensitive to stress such as due to cognitive decline, which makes cuddling even more important. The dopamine released in your brain from cuddling also helps with memory and thinking. Cuddling can help strengthen the immune system, balance the parasympathetic nervous system, and regulate white blood cell production. Cuddling and touch is good for arthritis because it relaxes muscles and releases bodily tension. It increases circulation to soft tissues and reduces pain. Also, the oxytocin released when cuddling helps relieve pain. 

Private Home Health Care understands the importance of a gentle and warm touch. This is why we maintain that ‘Compassion is at the Heart of Our Care’. We encourage everyone to cuddle with loved ones, pets, or robot therapy pets! Now with more seniors isolated than ever due to the pandemic, a therapy pet is a fantastic way for them to still be able to connect and get their needs met. 

One National Cuddle Up Day, cuddle for your health and well being! 

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National Cuddle Up Day

Each year on January 6th, National Cuddle Up Day encourages us to snuggle up with someone for the health benefits and more!

January typically features some of the coldest days of the year, so what better way to stay warm and reap the health benefits of cuddling on National Cuddle Up Day? Whether temps are below zero or only slightly chilly, there are multiple benefits to cuddling with a loved one, dog, or other pet.

By nature, humans are very social. Research has found that social ties and bonding is very important not only to wellness, but health, including emotional, physical, and mental. Cuddling is an important social activity that creates strong bonds.

Cuddling releases oxytocin. This hormone alone has tremendous health benefits. Besides giving us warm and fuzzy feelings, oxytocin reduces pain. So when the cold has made those muscles and joints ache, cuddling can help reduce those aches and pains. Oxytocin also helps relieve stress. Stress is tied to many chronic conditions and prolonged stress is harmful for to your health. Regularly getting enough oxytocin from cuddling can help reduce heart disease, lowers blood pressure, stress, and anxiety. If it weren’t free, insurance carriers would probably cover cuddling since it’s such a huge health benefit! Cuddling also releases dopamine — a chemical in the brain that helps improve focus and memory.

Communication is more than just e-mails, texts, or conversation. Physical touch can communicate trust, commitment, safety, and reassurance. This goes for human to human contact as well as human to pet contact. Cuddling expresses all these things, which are vital to a healthy relationship. If you live on your own or do not have a significant other, you can still benefit from cuddling! There is nothing like cuddling up with a pet while watching a movie. You can get the same benefits from cuddling with your pet dog or cat as you do with another human. Even holding hands with someone is a form of affectionate touch, which you can do with a family member or loved one.

Cuddling with someone enhances your bond with that person. Even if you’re not verbally communicating, this type of contact helps increase feelings of trust, comfort, safety, and reassurance between cuddle partners. These feelings can also remain long after the cuddle session is over. It is so important that when babies are not cuddled enough, it is harmful for their health. Cuddling is a natural thing, and it is good for you in every way.

Don’t have someone to cuddle up with? Make an appointment for a massage. Studies show massage provides similar benefits. A soothing, comforting massage can relieve stress as well as stimulate blood flow, alleviate muscle cramps and soreness, and help heal muscles, as well as soothe the mind and spirit.

So today, on National Cuddle Up Day, do just that, and find someone to cuddle up with! Or, use this opportunity to learn about the many health benefits of cuddling and adopting a pet or even just getting a massage, haircut, or manicure. The point is, treat yourself to the healing effects of touch! Private Home Health Care encourages cuddles!

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National Bean Day

Green, red, kidney, lima, or soy are just a few of the different kinds of beans recognized on National Bean Day on January 6th. This day celebrates the bean in all sizes, shapes, and colors. We’ve been cultivating beans (legumes) since the early seventh millennium BC. People in every part of the world eat beans. Whether it be 3 bean chili in the US, to hummus in the Middle East, black beans and rice in Latin America, Lentils in India, or tofu (soy beans) in Asia, beans are truly a global food. This is for good reason, because beans are not only very good for you, but they are accessible and easy to digest.

And today, just as throughout the Old and New World history, beans provide a significant source of protein. Beans are seeds from the Fabaceae family, commonly known as the legume, pea, or bean family. They are an affordable source of protein, fiber, iron, and vitamins that offer many health benefits.

Health benefits of beans:

Beans are a great source of plant based protein. Protein is a vital nutrient that plays a key role in maintaining and repairing the body. Beans are high in amino acids, the building blocks of protein. Beans make an excellent source of protein for vegetarians and vegans.

They are also lower in calories and saturated fat than some other protein sources, such as meat and full fat or low fat dairy products.

Folate:

Beans contain several vital nutrients, including folate. Folate is essential for overall health, to make healthy red blood cells, and help prevent neural tube defects in a fetus during pregnancy.

Fiber:

Beans are an excellent source of fiber. Fiber is needed to help digest food and keep the digestive tract in top shape. It is essential for gut health, which supports all other health functions.

National Bean Day was originally supposed to celebrate Gregor Mendel, the famous geneticist, passed away on January 6th in 1884 and he used to use pea and bean plants to figure out theories about plant genetics. So it is really more about genetics than eating beans, but don’t let that stop you. Beans played an instrumental role in discovering genetics (if two long beans are bred then their offspring will also be long, etc). However, National Bean Day can celebrate both genetics and beans!

Genetics play a huge role in health, such as fighting disease. For instance, you can have tests done for certain genes, such as a gene that may make you more prone to heart disease or breast cancer. If you know that you are genetically predisposed to those conditions, you can take precautionary and proactive steps to lessen the chances of developing those diseases. For instance, if you know that heart disease runs in your family, then you may want to stay away from foods with high amounts of saturated fat or salt.

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January is Blood Donor Month

January is Blood Donor Month. Donating blood is one of the best things you can do. According to the World Health Organization, “blood is the most precious gift that anyone can give to another person — the gift of life. A decision to donate your blood can save a life, or even several if your blood is separated into its components — red cells, platelets and plasma.” President Richard Nixon proclaimed January as National Blood Donor Month for the first time on December 31, 1969, as requested by Senate Joint Resolution 154.

The American Red Cross states that winter is “one of the most difficult times of year to collect enough blood products to meet patient needs.” That’s because of, among other things, busy holiday schedules and bad weather often resulting in canceled blood drives. Furthermore, seasonal illnesses such as the flu force potential donors to forgo their blood donations. This year especially with social distancing, blood banks are low. The Red Cross needs to collect more than 13,000 donations every day to keep the blood supply ready and available to meet the needs of about 2,600 hospitals, clinics and cancer centers across the country. Blood is needed more than ever, and Private Home Health Care encourages those who are able to contribute to the greater good and donate blood.

That’s just one of the reasons that National Blood Donor Month, which has taken place each January since 1970, is such an important observance. Donating blood saves many lives and improves health for many people. In fact, every time we donate blood, there is the potential to save 3 lives. Those who have particularly rare blood types, like AB negative, B negative, AB positive, and O are most in demand. What is also great about donating blood is that it takes only a short time to do, and you can do it every 8 weeks. You can keep on giving at no cost with minimal time commitment. It is also considered healthy to donate blood because it causes your body to create new blood for the amount it lost, which refreshes your system. To that end, the American Journal of Epidemiology reports that blood donors are 88 percent less likely to have a heart attack. Another good thing about donating blood is that when you do, your blood is tested for any diseases and analyzed. That means that you could potentially catch any warning signs or irregularities that you otherwise would not have been aware of.

Multiply your blood donation efforts by hosting a blood drive! By hosting a blood drive, you can exponentially increase your impact. Encourage just 10 people to give, and you can help save up to 30 lives. Get your neighborhood, office, or club involved and you can celebrate National Blood Donor Month together! It’s a great way to spend more time with people you care about while also giving back to your community.

If you are unable to donate blood, you can still contribute to the cause! Share blood donation online with American Red Cross or OneBlood’s social media posts with your friends and family.

Eligible blood and platelet donors are urged to schedule a donation today by using the Red Cross Blood Donor app, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-REDCROSS (1-800-733-2767). Help even more people by inviting your sister, daughter or other family members, friends and colleagues to donate too.

Although there is no upper age limit, there is a minimum age requirement. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood.

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National Keto Day

Today is National Keto Day! In recent years, the keto diet has been all the rage, with many celebrities and public figures endorsing the benefits of this diet. The keto diet can help with rapid weight loss.

National Keto Day, January 5, we are reminded that people on ketogenic diets cut carbs out of their diet to an extent where the body starts to consume fat — instead of carbohydrates — for fuel. The obvious benefit of fat used for energy is weight loss. But, it can also help with many other conditions. Ketogenic diets may even have benefits against diabetes, cancer, epilepsy, and Alzheimer’s disease. The keto diet was originally developed to help epilepsy patients avoid seizures, and is shown to increase cognitive brain function.

Basics of the ketogenic diet: The ketogenic diet is a very low carb, high fat diet that shares many similarities with the Atkins and low carb diets. It involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis. When this happens, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy. It also turns fat into ketones in the liver, which can supply energy for the brain. Ketogenic diets can cause significant reductions in blood sugar and insulin levels.

How do you follow the keto diet?

Because the keto diet has such a high fat requirement, followers must eat fat at each meal. In a daily 2,000-calorie diet, that might look like 165 grams of fat, 40 grams of carbs, and 75 grams of protein. However, the exact ratio depends on your particular needs.

Some healthy unsaturated fats are allowed on the keto diet — like nuts (almonds, walnuts), seeds, avocados, tofu, and olive oil. But saturated fats from oils (palm, coconut), lard, butter, and cocoa butter are encouraged in high amounts.

Protein is part of the keto diet, but it doesn’t typically discriminate between lean protein foods and protein sources high in saturated fat such as beef, pork, and bacon.

What about fruits and vegetables? All fruits are rich in carbs, but you can have certain fruits (usually berries) in small portions. Vegetables (also rich in carbs) are restricted to leafy greens (such as kale, Swiss chard, spinach), cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, bell peppers, onions, garlic, mushrooms, cucumber, celery, and summer squashes. A cup of chopped broccoli has about six carbs.

Medical professionals do not recommend being on a keto diet for an extended amount of time. Also, this diet comes with a few risks, especially for those who are not in prime health. The keto diet is high in saturated fat, which is associated with an increase in “bad” LDL cholesterol, which is also linked to heart disease. Other risks include nutrient deficiency, liver problems, kidney problems, and constipation. However, some studies indicate that the keto diet can benefit slowing cancer cell growth, reduce symptoms of Alzheimer’s, epilepsy, and Parkinson’s disease, polycystic ovary syndrome, and brain injuries.

Like any diet, make sure to consult with your doctor. Because of its popularity, keto-friendly foods are widely available. For those who follow and benefit from this diet, Private Home Health Care wishes you a great National Keto Day!

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National Trivia Day

January 4th is National Trivia Day!

Who says that there is such a thing as useless knowledge? National Trivia Day on January 4th celebrates obscure knowledge that we get to call upon when playing a game of trivia. Yes, those random facts do come in handy. Not only is trivia fun, but it is great for your brain!

Learning what seems like totally useless information is actually very good exercise for your brain. Trivia questions are very good for your memory. Trivia keeps us smart and engaged. Just like your body benefits from exercise, so does the brain. The frontal cortex of the brain plays a major role in processing our memories. Trivia questions engage the frontal cortex and exercise it.

Cognition means the mental processes engaged while gaining knowledge and comprehension. The better your cognition, the more you’ll be able to remember things you’ve learned.

To help build up your cognition, you need to exercise your brain. Trivia is great because you are trying to recall information from inside your brain that you don’t use a lot. Since trivia questions are usually regarding multiple unrelated topics – this significantly improves cognition by seeking out the info throughout your brain.

Trivia questions are usually in a relaxed setting. Many times we laugh at ourselves when we play trivia, therefore, our stress levels are reduced.

As the brain ages, we need to really pay attention and continue to exercise it. We should, at every age, enjoy some useless trivia! Trivia is a great way to slow or reduce cognitive decline. Also, when aging you acquire more knowledge, so you are an even more competitive trivia player! Today, Private Home Health Care encourages you to learn or play trivia with friends and family to engage your brain and have fun while at it!

P.S.

Q. What holiday celebrates little known factoids?

A. National Trivia Day, January 4.

Our obsession for trivia has been part of popular culture for many decades and it’s easy to understand why. Most of us are naturally competitive and social beings and trivia blends the two perfectly. If you enjoy wowing your friends with interesting stats and frivolous facts, today is your day to shine!

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National Spaghetti Day

January 4th is National Spaghetti Day! We love spaghetti at Private Home Health Care, whether it be in a beefy ragu sauce or a creamy alfredo coating, you can never go wrong with spaghetti. Usually made from semolina flour, this pasta has been a worldwide favorite for ages and loved by millions all over the world. There are a variety of different pasta dishes based on spaghetti, and the sauce determines most of them. Spaghetti can be a go-to weeknight meal or dressed up as a special occasion delight, such as spaghetti carbonara.

Though the origins of spaghetti are disputed—whether it was Marco Polo bringing back culinary invention from the East, and Arab trade-route delicacy, or a home-grown Sicilian treat dating back to the 12th Century—we can all agree that a cold night with a big bowl of noodle-y, saucy goodness is balm for the soul. So join us on January 4th as we celebrate National Spaghetti Day with this amazing dish! The word spaghetti is plural for the Italian word spaghetto, which is a diminutive of spago, meaning “thin string” or “twine.”

In March of 2009, the world record for the largest bowl of spaghetti was set and then reset in March of 2010 when a Garden Grove California Buca di Beppo restaurant successfully filled a swimming pool with more than 13,780 pounds of pasta. Did you know that there is a tradition of throwing spaghetti at the wall to see if it is cooked and ready to be eaten? Don’t forget to take it down or it could get stuck up there for a while!

It used to be that the standard semolina pasta was by and large the only option. Nowadays there are many different types of spaghetti that are healthier than the traditional kind. There is whole wheat, gluten free, pasta from lentils and beans, and more! Also, there is veggie pasta! This is ‘spaghetti’ made from zucchini or squash using a spiralizer to cut it into spaghetti strips! This spaghetti is just as delicious as the semolina one, and it is much healthier and lower in calories. You can treat it like regular spaghetti and put sauce on it. Plus, the spiralizer is so much fun to use!

Private Home Health Care wishes you a happy National Spaghetti Day! Celebrate by eating your favorite kind of spaghetti, or even making your own!

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National Personal Trainer Awareness Day

National Personal Trainer Awareness Day kick starts the year on January 2nd with a day to appreciate the professionals who help us to keep our resolutions, one step at a time. Over the festive period, we tend to over-indulge, and so January is the month whereby we try to get back in shape again. Personal trainers play a pivotal role in this, as they help us to achieve our health and fitness goals in a safe manner. They also keep us motivated and they make sure that the workouts we do are right for our objectives.

With getting in shape as one of the biggest resolutions each new year, personal trainers know they will be in high demand. Their jobs are not only to motivate us, but to make sure we learn how to work our bodies safely. Injuries due to misuse of equipment or not properly warming up our muscles keep us from keeping our resolutions just as much as lack of motivation.

Personal trainers design customized programs for their clients. The plan should fit their current physical fitness and goals. They will teach correct techniques with the equipment and tools available.

There are so many benefits that are associated with hiring a personal trainer, and so it is only right that we thank these men and women for having such a positive influence on our lives. Whether you see your personal trainer several times per week or once a month for a catch-up, they can help to ensure you are on the right path by monitoring your progress and putting together a custom and personalized plan that is suited to your needs. Personal trainers also help add variety to our exercise regime, challenge us to do better, educate us on exercising the right way to reduce injuries, hold us accountable when we’re slacking, and guide us for healthy eating and nutrition. Additionally, personal trainers encourage, motivate, and help to hold you accountable for your physical fitness. They help you to learn how to track your goals and guide you to your next step of physical fitness. All along the way, they will challenge you and make sure you continue to use proper form to prevent injury while also aiming toward your best health.

Today is the day to celebrate personal trainers! They not only help us achieve our fitness goals, but are instrumental in improving our health and our lives. Private Home Health Care recognizes and shows our appreciation for personal trainers!

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