Archive for October, 2007

Does birth order matter?

A new research study has announced that firstborn’s IQs tend to be higher than those of their younger siblings. But is this study universal? Let us know what you think!


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Weight Watchers

Weight watcher’s approach to a healthy lifestyle is based on “Four Pillars”, which are behavior, support, exercise and food. They believe you have to work on all four of these areas to be successful.

Weight Watchers Points

There are two different Weight Watchers plans you can follow. There is the flex plan that uses the points system and the core plan that does not use points. The flex plan assigns food a points value based on the food’s calories, fat, and fiber. You are given a “target” number of points you are allowed to consume each day, which is determined by your weight and height and a few other factors. If you stay within your points you should lose weight.

The core plan does not use points at all. It based solely on you eating healthy foods. You can eat as much as it takes for you to feel full because all of the foods are healthy for you. Foods on the core plan include, avocados, potatoes, salsa, brown rice and lean meats. Both plans, however, include “weekly allowances” so you may indulge for a special occasion.

Weight Watchers Points Calculator

So how exactly do you figure out each foods point value? Here is a simple calculation you can use.

Total # of calories / 50

+ Total # of fat grams/ 12

-Total # of dietary fiber grams / 5

= Points Value

For example, if you were going to consume a food that had 100 calories, 24 grams of fat and 10 grams of dietary fiber that foods points value would be 2. Not all foods will come out to even number, in that case just round up.

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Cranberries Health Benefits

So what are the health benefits of cranberries?


Cranberries contain proanthocyanidins, which may be helpful for preventing the following:

  1. E. coli, which is associated with urinary tract infections.
  2. Gum disease
  3. Stomach ulcers

Research studies indicate that cranberries and cranberry products also contain a significant amount of antioxidants and other phytonutrients, which may help protect against heart disease, cancer, and other diseases.


Cranberry Institute
Health research, news, and information about cranberries.

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Five Commonly Misdiagnosed Diseases

The following diseases are commonly misdiagnosed:

1. Aortic Dissection
2. Cancer
3. Clogged arteries
4. Heart attack
5. Infection

In order to avoid misdagnosis, you should do the following:

1. Ask your doctor, “What else could my illness be?”
2. Don’t assume no news is not good news.
3. Ask for additional tests.
4. Assume that the doctors don’t talk to one another.
5. Be wary if your doctors are working in shifts.

Read more about misdiagnosed diseases.

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Insurance Additions/Alternatives

Health insurance is a large part of keeping your body healthy. If you ask any Presidential candidate, they feel that not enough Americans are insured. The obvious reason why so many Americans are uninsured is cost.

According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the U.S. is projected to spend over $2.2 trillion on health care in 2007, or just under $7,500 per U.S. resident. Health spending in 2007 is projected to accountfor 16.2% of GDP

In 1970, U.S. health care spending was about $75 billion on health care, or $356 per resident, and accounted for 7.2% of GDP.

Health care spending has risen about 2.4 percentage points faster than GDP since 1970.

CMS projects that by 2016 (nine years from now) health care spending will be over $4.1 trillion or $12,782 per resident, and account for 19.6% of GDP.

The primary reasons for the increase include longevity increase, inflation, and population growths.One insurance alternative is healthcare discount plans. These plans cost a low monthly fee and provide discounts with medical providers in your area. One such plan is AmeriPlan®

AmeriPlan® is not a health insurance plan, but a discount program. The company has a network of thousands of doctors and providers that have agreed to offer their services at discounted prices to members of the program. AmeriPlan® offers a variety of plans starting from $20 each, and plans can be purchased ala carte to customize your needs.


Plans like this are also very nice for additions to your health insurance. For instance, if your plan offers medical but not dental and vision, you can purchases a discount vision and medical plan.


These plans also work well for college aged students who no longer have coverage by their parents, but are in great health and have few health care needs.

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