Thursday, February 9, 2017

7 Simple Tips to a Healthy Heart


7 Simple Tips to a Healthy Heart

There are seven simple ways to help control your risk for heart disease. Manage your heart risk by understanding “Life’s Simple 7.”

Get Active
Start by learning the basics. Also, children need 60 minutes a day of physical activity, so find ways to workout with your kids to help ensure heart health in addition to your own.
Control Cholesterol  

Eat better  
Want more ways to eat better? Try these tips:
  • Track what you eat in an electronic or food diary
  • Eat vegetables and fruits
  • Eat fish twice a week
  • Cut back on added sugars and saturated fats
  • Eat unrefined fiber-rich whole-grain foods
  • Reduce sodium

Manage blood pressure
To manage blood pressure, you should:
  • Eat a heart-healthy diet
  • Get regular physical activity and maintain a healthy weight
  • Manage stress, limit alcohol and avoid tobacco

Lose weight
Calculate your body mass index to help you determine if you need to lose weight

Reduce blood sugar
The following tips can help reduce blood sugar:

  • Reduce consumption of simple sugars
  • Take medications or insulin if it is prescribed to you
  • Get regular exercise

Stop smoking
Cigarettes smokers have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Whatever it takes for you to stop smoking, it is worth it!

Mary Lehet

Life's Simple 7 | Go Red For Women®. (2014). Retrieved April 18, 2016

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Health Assessments: What assessments should I get?


Health Assessments:
What assessments should I get?

Have you taken the preventive care approach? Preventive care includes screenings, check-ups, and patient counseling to prevent health problems and detect future health risk. You can stay on top of things by getting a yearly physical exam with preventive health screenings. A few preventive screenings for adults may include: cholesterol, vaccination updates, heart rate, blood pressure, blood sugar, etc.

What are the WellU CV Clinic assessments?

The Wellu Cv Clinic assesses cardiovascular health and risk factors. This clinic is located downstairs at the student health service office. You can schedule an appointment at online at the CSS website (

At what age do you begin breast cancer & colon cancer screenings?

Breast Cancer:
  • Women should have a mammogram every one to two years starting at age 40, and every year starting at age 50.
  • If you have a family history of breast cancer, it is recommended to start the screening earlier.
  • You will receive your results a few weeks after the screening. If you have any concerns or questions about this screening contact your health professional

Colon Cancer:
  • Colon Cancer screenings should begin at age 50 and should continue until 75 years of age.
  • If you are at high risk of colon cancer, you may start colon cancer screening much earlier
  • Colonoscopy should be every 10 years unless you are high risk, then you should have it more frequently
  • Screening may be be covered by health insurance.

Clay Redd

Colorectal Cancer Screening Guidelines. (2014). Retrieved April 08, 2016

For Older Adults Retrieved April 08, 2016

Prevention Care. (2015). Retrieved April 08, 2016

Screening Guidelines. Retrieved April 08, 2016

Monday, December 19, 2016


Cookies & Conversation 
Short topic introduction & time to chat about it...

First Tuesday of the month 10:00 a.m.
First Wednesday of the month 2:00 p.m.
Mitchell Kitchenette
February: Neuroscience, Meditation, & Mindfulness...What's Up With That?
March: Navigate Your Healthcare & Pharmacy System 
April: The Truth About Strength Training!...
It Does Not Have To Be So Difficult!
May: VirtuWell: Learn How to Save Money!

Diabetes Prevention Program... 

New Group Starting on St. Paul Campus
Screening is February 1st 11:00-1:00
St. Paul Campus, Room A Lower Level
New Group starts February 8th 11:00-12:00
Simply go to the screening session to see if you qualify! 

Duluth Campus Groups continue... 
Mondays & Tuesdays 4:30-5:30.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Lower back pain? Check out these tips!


Lower back pain? Check out these tips!

If you’ve ever experienced lower back pain, you are not alone. An estimated 75-85 percent of Americans will suffer from a form of lower back pain in their lifetime.

Spine-health has found six simple ways you can help reduce your lower back pain.
Bonus: None of the following suggestions involve a trip to the doctor’s office!

1. Release inner endorphins

Toss out the Tylenol!

Endorphins are hormones that can block pain signals from reaching your brain.  By finding activities that release endorphins, such as meditation and exercise, you can decrease your back pain without pain medication.  

2. Get enough sleep

Sleep is the answer to everything... Right?

Poor sleep can worsen your back pain. Make sure you are getting the recommended eight hours of sleep, otherwise your pain could progress throughout the day.

Unfortunately, two-thirds of people with chronic back pain suffer from a sleep disorder.  If you are having trouble sleeping due to chronic pain, consult your doctor.  

3. Exercise your core

No, you will not have a six pack after day three of exercising.  

Your core muscles support your spine, so a stronger core will help reduce your pain. Simply dedicate 20 minutes of your day to core strengthening activities.  Be patient.  You will not feel relief right away!

4. Sooth pain with hot or cold therapy

You finally have a use for those frozen peas in your freezer...

Cold therapy reduces inflammation and acts as a local anesthetic by slowing down the nerve impulses.  Heat therapy stimulates blood flow and suppresses pain messages that are being sent to the brain.  

5. Stretch your hamstrings twice a day

Wait... What do leg muscles have to do with back pain?

Tight hamstrings can greatly affect your lower back.  The tight muscles can cause strain and stress on your joints and back.  Gently stretch your hamstrings twice a day, and your back pain can be reduced immensely.  

6. Engage your brain

Train your brain to ignore the pain.

Pain is interpreted by your brain.  So, what if you can teach your brain on how to ignore these pain signals? You can!  By using relaxation techniques, visual imagery, and distraction techniques, you can train your brain to process the pain differently.  

Allie Raich

Health Information Management, 2017

Burke, S. (2015, October 8). 6 Overlooked remedies for lower back pain relief.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Thankful Heart: How to Put the Giving into Thanksgiving

Thankful Heart: How to Put the Giving into Thanksgiving
By: Kira M. Newman

What would a generosity-infused Thanksgiving look like? Here are some suggestions:

1. Perform acts of Thanksgiving kindness
On our annual day of gratitude, there are ample opportunities for giving. You might think of friends who have no family to visit, and invite them to join your celebrations. You might donate your leftovers to those who would desperately appreciate them (rather than hearing "Turkey again?" from your long-suffering family). Or maybe just bake your husband's favorite pumpkin pie for dessert.
Incidentally, kindness is already a small part of our Thanksgiving rituals in the ceremonial presidential pardoning of a turkey. If turkeys could communicate with us, we would most certainly hear some genuine and spontaneous clucks of gratitude!

2. Encourage kindness in kids now-and throughout the year
Performing acts of Thanksgiving kindness yourself-in other words, modeling kind behavior-is one of four research-backed ways to encourage kindness in kids.

Raising kind kids also means being careful with the way you praise and criticize them. Praising their character ("You're such a helpful friend") but criticizing their actions ("That wasn't a very considerate thing to do") will help kids see themselves as good and capable of improvement. Counter intuitively, offering kids material rewards for kind behavior may backfire because they become motivated by the rewards, not the warm glow of kindness itself.  

This approach coincides with the gentle way sociologist Christine Carter believes parents can inspire gratitude in their children. She writes, "We are simply trying to elicit a positive emotion-feelings of appreciation-just like we might try to elicit a smile from a baby. This means not insisting kids feel grateful, and certainly not telling them what they should feel grateful for; instead, it's about creating an environment and situation where the feelings can naturally arise." 
3. Donate to the right charities (for you)
When Giving Tuesday rolls around, you'll surely be bombarded with requests for donations. The charity you choose could have an impact on how you feel afterward-and whether you decide to donate next year.

Research suggests that the most effective giving is founded on a human connection, so make sure to do your research and find a platform (such as that provides lots of detail on the people you'll be helping. Favor charities where you can see the impact of your giving; that means knowing what your money will be used for-for example, new classroom supplies or a cooking stove-and actually being able to communicate with recipients. Finally, donate because you choose to, not because you feel pressured to, and everyone will be better off.

It takes a while to develop a deep sense of gratefulness, a profound appreciation for all the positives that come our way, a belief that everything in life is a gift. In a perfect world, we would all be this grateful-and at Thanksgiving, we could sit down and the thankfulness would flow forth genuinely and profusely. But many of us aren't there yet, and focusing on generosity can be a different way to increase gratitude in the world this Thanksgiving.

In other words, emphasize the giving, and the thanks will follow.

Work Cited:

Newman, K. M. (2015, November 24). How to Put the Giving into Thanksgiving.

Retrieved August 01, 2016.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Not So Sweet: The Truth About Sugar


Not So Sweet: The Truth About Sugar

What do carob syrup, muscovado, sorbitol, and dehydrated cane juice all have in common?

These, along with 52 others, are just another way to say sugar!  That means there are 56 different ways sugar can be listed on food labels, which makes it hard to determine what foods really are a healthy choice.

The World Health Organization suggests limiting your daily sugar intake to 25 grams.  This advice is hard to stick to when addedsugar hides in ¾ of the 600,000 items in the grocery store! The other ¼ of the food includes:
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Eggs
  • Meats
  • Fish
  • Nuts
  • Water

By sticking to this list, you will reduce your sugar consumption and start living a happier, healthier life.

The more you know! 

Click here for more astonishing sugar facts!  Sugar: Hiding in Plain Sight

Allie Raich
Health Information Management

TED-Ed. 2014, March 31. Sugar: Hiding in plain sight Robert Lustig.