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October if Fire Prevention Month!

October is fire prevention month! In 2016 fires caused 3,390 civilian deaths and even more were injured so we take this very seriously.

Our team is dedicated to checking all of our client’s houses for safety hazards that can start fires. The client’s well-being is extremely important to us therefore, we make sure measures such as two unblocked exits are available, no combustibles are close to heat, looking at electrical equipment condition, and something as little as candles are taken care of.

Please spread the word and stay safe by inspecting you or loved ones home.

The URL below is a helpful fire prevention booklet for older adults.

http://files.esfi.org/file/Home-Fire-Safety-for-Older-Adults-Safety-Awareness-Program-Toolkit.pdf

 

 

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It’s Fall Prevention Month!

It’s Fall Prevention Month!  And, we are highlighting some tips to keep you and your family safe.

Falls can happen to anyone at any age and they can lead to serious complications.  However, as we age, our likeliness of falling increases and the injuries from falls can be more serious. Injuries can lead to long-term hospitalization which carries its own risks.

Below are some safety tips to prevent falls.

  1. Use your assistive devices as recommended by your healthcare practitioner.
  2. Maximize your vision by cleaning your glasses and avoid sunglasses in lowlight areas.
  3. Turn on entryway lights and add highlights to low light and unlit areas.
  4.  Keep flashlights in bedrooms, bathrooms and in easy access areas.
  5. Maintain a strong footing by wearing sturdy snippers and shoes.
  6. Keep pathways clear by moving furniture and items such as books and papers from floors.
  7. Remove scatter rugs and tape down edges of area rugs.
  8. Wipe up spills and keep floors dry.
  9. Have your hearing checked.
  10. Be checked for vitamin deficiencies.
  11. Stay hydrated year round.

 

 

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National Cleft & Craniofacial Awareness + Prevention month!

July is National Cleft and Craniofacial Awareness and Prevention Month, a chance to improve and raise awareness about orofacial clefts. In the United States has approximately 2,650 babies are born per year with a cleft palate and 4,400 are born with a cleft lip. A cleft lip happens during mid pregnancy when body tissue and cells from each side of the head grow towards the center of the face, causing the babies lips to not join before birth, usually an open space between the lips and nose due to lack of tissue. A cleft palate is also formed during mid pregnancy; however, the tissue that makes up the roof of the mouth does not join together completely leaving some babies with front and back parts of the palate open. Both defects leave babies with feeding restrictions, breathing, and problems speaking clearly.

To help reduce a woman’s risk for having a baby with an orofacial cleft or other craniofacial condition, health care providers should encourage patients who are thinking about becoming pregnant to commit to a healthy lifestyle such as monitoring diabetes and to quit smoking. CDC and its partners are working to better understand the preventable causes of clefts and craniofacial defects. You could also donate to organization Smile Train, an international children’s charity that provides free cleft repair surgery and cleft care to children in over 80 countries! Surgeries are recommended to take place within the first 12 months of life, but the organization works with youths with clefts as well.

Related image

 

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June is… Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month 

Not only does June suggest the beginning of summer, it also represents the month dedicated to Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness. Before becoming your own advocate for Alzheimer’s disease it is vital to gain an understanding of how exactly the brain works with versus without Alzheimer’s. Three sections make up the brain; the cerebrum, the cerebellum, and the brain stem.

The cerebrum is probably what you think of when you imagine the brain. It contains all of the brain’s lobes (frontal,parietal, occipital, and temporal) that control major functions such as thinking, problem solving, remembering, feeling, etc. It is also responsible for movement control. The cerebellum is located underneath the cerebrum, towards the back of the head. You can blame your coordination and balance skills on this part of the brain. The brain stem serves as the extension cord between your brain and spinal cord, and controls automatic functions which are functions that we do not need to consciously tell our bodies to perform. Such as breathing, digesting, heart rate, and blood pressure.

The most valuable players of the brain, are the neurons. The branches extending from these nerve cells connect at over 100 trillion points, and the average adult brain contains around 100 billion cells. This network of neurons, often referred to as a neuron forest, releases signals that travel through the “forest”. Thus signals represent the basis of memories, thoughts, and feelings; all functions that decline in Alzheimer’s patients.

The signals move along the neurons, which connect to one another at the synapse. The signals, which act as electrical charges, often trigger the release of neurotransmitters once they reach the synapse. As these neurotransmitters travel across the synapse, they transmit signals to other cells. This transmission results in the creation of a code that our brains generate in order to explain thoughts, memories, skills, and other characteristics that differentiate us from one another. Our brain’s coding alters whenever we experience new situations, skills, people, emotions, etc.

So now the question is, how is all of this effected by Alzheimer’s disease?

The neurons are the main type of cell destroyed by Alzheimer’s, hence the electrical charges and the neurotransmitter activity are disrupted. As a result of the interference of neurons and their connection to one another, the brain’s code is misinterpreted. This explains why early signs of Alzheimer’s typically include memory loss and confusion.

When neurons and surrounding tissue are lost, the brain experiences shrinkage. As the anatomy diminishes, it becomes inefficient resulting in the deterioration of specific functions. When the brain’s cortex is impaired, thinking, planning, and remembering becomes compromised. The hippocampus, an area of the cortex responsible for the formation of new memories, experiences extreme depreciation in Alzheimer’s patients.

Fluid-filled spaces in the brain, called ventricles, expand. And plaques, which are clusters of protein fragments, build up between neurons. Tangles are present within the dead and/or dying neurons, these twisted strands of protein along with the plagues are suspected to be the culprits behind cell death and tissue loss in the brain of an Alzheimer’s patient. As the disease progresses, plagues and tangles spread through the cortex. The quicker the spread, the more severe the Alzheimer’s is; hence how long the patient will experience symptoms of the disease. Similar to the brain, each case of Alzheimer’s is unique, to find out more information, visit www.alz.org.

By: Piper Newhall

References: www.alz.org 

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Alzheimer’s Grant – JYM CareGiver Fund

JYM CAREGIVER FUND

An Alzheimer’s diagnosis is horrific and overwhelming for those afflicted, and for their caregivers.

Jog Your Memory was formed in 2014 with the purpose of funding research to eradicate Alzheimer’s disease.  While we remain committed to that mission, we know that every day there are caregivers and families in our community suffering from the emotional and financial devastation brought on by the disease.  That is why we created the JYM Caregiver Fund.  In 2017, we began providing annual grants for caregivers coping with all the stress and uncertainty of having a loved one afflicted.

Depending on where you are in the process of figuring out care for your loved one, you will receive funds to help best meet your current family needs:

1. In home consultation with a certified geriatric specialist in your geographical (Approximate cost $400)

Services may include:

  • A comprehensive in-home needs assessment in collaboration with health-care providers and family members
  • An individualized/supportive care plan to address immediate and long-term needs
  • Consultation with elders and their family members to provide guidance and resources
  • Family conflict mediation when family members disagree on how best to care for their loved one
  • Crisis intervention to address urgent needs and unexpected changes
  • Advocacy to ensure that the elder’s rights are protected
  • Family liaison for long-distance caregivers, providing updates on service and needs

2.    In-home care services to provide the primary caregiver stress-free time away (Approximately 35 hours of care, approximate cost $30/hour)

3.    In-facility respite care for resident, to allow caregiver overnight stress free time away (Overnight cost approximately $250 to $300 per 24 hours, daytime cost approx. $100 per day)

4.    Resources to help make the home more sustainable for the resident

5.    Assistance in funding music programs at current care-giving facility

Monetary awards of up to $1,500 are available. All grant monies are mailed to resident’s home with checks written payable directly to the chosen service providers. Each family may only receive one award in a twelve month period.

Applicants will be notified of awards by mail and may receive a call to be interviewed prior to being chosen for a grant.  Review of a complete application generally takes three to five weeks. A submitted application is not a guarantee of receiving a grant. Funds are limited and are based on availability. All information will be held strictly confidential.

We are unable to process incomplete applications.

Applications

Please email us at jogyourmemory5k@gmail.com for an application

Mail:        Jog Your Memory
Attn: JYM Caregiver Fund
56 Nichols Road
Needham MA 02492
Email:     jogyourmemory5k@gmail.com

Web:     www. jogyourmemory5k org

The JYM Caregiver Fund welcomes applications from candidates actively being treated for Alzheimer’s disease residing within New England and New York.

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March is Digestive Health Awareness Month!

Despite four Nor’easters in March….spring is close, days are getting longer, and soon plants will begin spouting.  Be mindful of everything coming back to life, the wonderful clean smells of spring, and how awesome you’ll look and feel by limiting the toxins in your environment.  With spring comes newness and an increased desire for us to improve how we look and feel.  When it comes to health, prevention is the best medicine and knowledge of what we put in and on our bodies is a good illness deterrent place to start.

Our digestive health impacts every aspect of our overall health. Our immune system is 70% in our gut. We have over 100 trillion good and bad bacteria know as our microbiota. Within those numbers are 1,000 different species made up of 5,000 distinct bacterial strains. Everyone has their own unique bacteria mixture. Studies suggest that certain bacteria in our gut can treat and prevent many common diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, and heart disease. We manufacture 90% of our serotonin (happy neurotransmitter) in our digestive tract. Foods high in tryptophan positively impact brain serotine levels.  Good digestive health requires we make smart choices in our foods and products to improve our mood and overall wellness.

Eating organic, non-GMO fruits and veggies, as well as using non-toxic products are the first steps in preventing disease. Studies show a positive relation between lower cancer risk and high intake of vegetables, fruit, fish, calcium-rich foods and fiber.  As we age, chronic, low-grade inflammation increases throughout our bodies, which causes a drop in serotonin, and the progression of degenerative diseases, such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease to name a few.  Moreover, inflammation is the underlining problem that dictates cancerous tumor origination, progression, and growth.

Our bodies use serotonin to produce the natural amino acid tryptophan which balances and improves our mood and memory.  Tryptophan-rich foods such as, eggs, salmon, turkey, chocolate, oats, dried dates, yogurt, nuts, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, spirulina and peanuts, to name a few support healthy serotonin levels. Be aware that using non-organic, and GMO foods may have toxins (pesticides) which encourage a negative inflammatory response in our body.  Be mindful of diets high in added sugar which are linked to esophageal, small intestine, colon, breast cancer and other cancers.

Give your cells the nutrients they need to thrive, and fight disease. Look for products supported by clinical studies and published in peer-reviewed medical journals. Juice Plus+ is the only product on the market that is supported by numerous independent peer-reviewed studies published in numerous leading medical journals. A healthy diet supported by quality nutritional based supplements that bridge the gap between what we should eat, and actually eat, helps ensure our bodies maintain their ability to ward off disease.

What we put in our bodies is as important as what we put on our bodies. Numerous studies show toxics from various commercial products are absorbed quickly into skin, pass directly into the bloodstream and impact hormones, cause birth defects and other illnesses. Most individuals don’t know that carcinogens are in 28% of all personal care products and 40% of those labeled natural, and these toxins significantly impact our immune system. Toxins (think poison) create cellular inflammation, which feeds cell disease. What you don’t know about your products can harm you!

Unfortunately, regulation on skincare products hasn’t happened since the 1930s, which leave millions of products with toxic ingredients on the shelves for daily use by individuals. When looking for safe products search for companies with strong lobbying efforts that push Congress to pass laws which prevent known toxins from being allowed in our products. Only one company, Beauty Counter, continues to lobby Congress to remove hundreds of toxins from the products we use.

 

Food safety collage.

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January is the Month of Resolutions and Recognizing Thyroid Disease

January is the month of resolutions; renewed commitments to fitness, nutrition, nontoxic products, diet and taking better care of ourselves, are a few of many improvements we commit to annually. This month is a great time to look at making positive health changes. As we look inward, we may ponder areas we want to change or improve from last year. Some accomplishments we are proud of, and some, we feel could be improved, so we make big plans to make positive changes for the New Year. While our effort may be on target and our actions on the right path, some still struggle with seeing and feeling the results of major lifestyle improvements through diet, exercise, good nutrition, and nontoxic products. Often, mainstream or fad diets are only temporary solutions and they don’t get to the heart of the matter and searching for nontoxic products that won’t encourage disease and alter our hormones is challenging. Really, who can even pronounce half of the ingredients we need to avoid! Our health is unique with each of us carry DNA from our parents and previous generations which create our distinctive genic code that might carry alternations that impact our health. One of these alternations may well impact our thyroid. This disease is brought to our awareness in January, as millions of individuals are newly diagnosed with the disease and learn how to best manage it through medication, diet, alternative treatments, and lifestyle modifications, among other changes.
The thyroid gland is located below our Adam’s apple and wraps around the trachea (windpipe) and is controlled by the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus. Thyroiditis means “inflammation of the thyroid gland” and includes different variations of the disease such as” Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, postpartum thyroiditis, and subacute thyroiditis to name a few. Thyroiditis consists of an immune (antibody) attack on the thyroid causing inflammation and damage to the cells. Thyroid disease can be overactive (Hyperthyroidism) or underactive (Hypothyroidism). Our energy, weight, bone density, hair, skin and nail quality, among other things are impacted by this disease. The thyroid uses iodine to produce critical hormones, namely, thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3) which are produced by the gland. When the thyroid hormone levels are low, the hypothalamus in the brain produces a hormone called thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TSH), which stimulates the thyroid gland to release more T4. When you have the disease your body either produces too much or too little of the hormones needed for proper function.
Thyroid function benefits from good nutrition as do all diseases. Non Genetically Modified Organisms (non-GMO), and Organic whole foods provide your body with nutrients to assist it in performing at optimal levels. Look for foods known to reduce inflammation, such as fruits, vegetables, fish and olive oil. Some of the best foods include leafy greens which are packed with nutrients like vitamin A, C and K, potassium, and fiber. Fruits such as apples have skins that are rich in pectin and detoxify our body by sticking to toxic compounds like mercury and excreting them through our urine. Pectin also can limit the amount of fat our cells absorb, so it’s diet friendly. Seaweed is rich in iodine which feeds the thyroid with what it needs to function properly. Yogurt protects the thyroid because it’s rich in vitamin D which helps with weight maintenance, and provides good bacteria that support a healthy gut balance which positively impacts our weight. Salmon is one of the best fish for metabolism because of its anti-inflammatory properties from the omega-3 fatty acids. Also, studies suggest that fish fatty acids may signal thyroid cells in the liver to burn more fat. With all fish, it’s best to purchase wild-caught versus farmed to avoid contaminants that may impact your thyroid function. It’s difficult to get the recommended daily allowances of fruits and vegetables and omegas from fish and olive oil, so finding a supplement that is backed by scientific research that bridges the nutritional gap is vital to good health.
Another area that needs some mention is your skin. Your skin is also impacted by your thyroid so maintaining healthy skin begins with good nutrition and a healthy thyroid begins with removing products with toxins from your skin care and makeup. Look for those products that provide proof that they omit the hundreds of toxins currently in many of the products on the market. Skincare and makeup products aren’t regulated by the government, and self-regulation has its limits, so look for products that provide clear information that they clean from harmful ingredients. Your body will thank you.
New Year’s resolutions are easier to keep when you build your knowledge on what can help your body perform at its best through good nutrition and nontoxic products. Taking small steps towards changing bad choices and replacing them with good choices will help you age better, look better and feel better. Are you up for the challenge to feel and look your best?

 

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Diet Improves Immunity to Disease Including Fighting Cancer

January is Cervical Health Awareness Month. This month is a time to raise awareness on an often silent and potentially deadly disease. Human Papillomavirus (HPV) which is linked to cervical cancer. HPV can be prevented with vaccination, and cervical cancer can be caught early and potentially stopped with regular screening. If screening results in a positive diagnosis your diet will play a role in how your feel and how your body manages the disease.
There is not a disease that can not benefit from a healthy diet based on whole food nutrition. Cancer feeds on sugar and the chemotherapy treatment for cervical cancer increases your blood sugar levels, as does the stress from having the disease. Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, plant-based proteins, and limiting sugar, and processed foods including meats will help your body fight disease and heal. It’s best to omit foods that aren’t organic or that are genetically modified (GMO) because studies have linked these types of foods to disease, infertility, birth defects, toxicity, food allergy and cancer to name a few concerns.
The good news is that studies are mounting on how a healthy attitude, regular exercise and diet impact cancer progression, recurrence risk, and survival. Many of us do not eat the recommended 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables daily, so bridging the gap with a whole food supplement will ensure your body has the nutrients needed to combat disease. Healthy diets help to reduce inflammation in your body and can be supported with delicious anti-inflammatory, super foods.
Super foods, those that help fight inflammation and disease include, dark leafy greens, namely, raw kale, collard greens, baby spinach (cooked), Swiss chard and other vegetables offer magnesium and provide additional vitamins and minerals. Fruits like blueberries, cherries, strawberries, oranges combat cancer and inflammation due to their high antioxidant and polyphenols (protective compounds found in plants) levels. Other super foods include, Manuka Honey which decreases cancer growth in the breast, skin and colon when combined with chemotherapy. Olive Oil studies show that it kills cancer and shrinks cancer cells, and reduces inflammation. Nuts and seeds also have cancer fighting properties. Good choices are almonds, walnuts, pecans, pine nuts, and cashews along with seeds such as, flax chia, sunflower, and sesame. All of these fight inflammation, cancer and provide various vitamins and minerals and some provide Omegas. For us chocolate lovers, thankfully, dark chocolate contains cancer fighting antioxidants called flavones, but even better is cocoa which contains over 30 mg of Flavones without the saturated fat. You can add coco to oatmeal, smoothies or shakes for a healthy treat.
What we put in our bodies and on our bodies matters! Eating healthy organic, non GMO foods and using products with a similar theme are key to living a quality life until the end of life.

 

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Slow Down Cognitive Decline

Some degree of cognitive decline is inevitable. This may include forgetfulness, trouble remaining focused, and decreased problem solving skills.

Cognitive decline can turn into more serious conditions such as dementia, or Alzheimer’s disease.

Luckily, there are dietary and lifestyle changes you can make that can reduce age related cognitive decline.

Dietary and Lifestyle Changes

  • Eat more fruits and vegetables instead of Switch from a western diet high in simple sugars and saturated fats to a Mediterranean diet with more fruits and vegetables.

 

  • Restricting calories could improve memory and learning.

 

  • Exercise stimulates your mind and can lead to enhanced cognitive function

 

Balance Your Hormones

Throughout your brain there are hormone receptors that transcript all of your genetics, including cognition and behavior. Keeping your hormones balances can prevent cognitive decline and emotional turmoil.

Some of the hormones you should keep in check:

  • Estrogen

Studies show that postmenopausal women with higher levels of endogenous estradiol display better semantic memory than those who are deficient

  • Testosterone

Higher testosterone levels were linked with better performance on the Mini-Mental State Examination at baseline. Aging men given testosterone replacement showed improved cognition function in a recent study.

Anxiety and Stress

Research shows that those with higher anxiety levels have to exert more energy to function compared to those with little to no level of anxiety. This means that in those with higher stress levels and anxiety that an environment for deterioration of the brain is created.

Meditation is an amazing way to combat stress and anxiety. Studies have revealed that meditation significantly increased cerebral blood flow in several major brain regions.

 

Sources: Life Extension

 

 

 

 

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