It’s time to guard against recreational water illnesses (RWIs) such as diarrhoea. Illnesses can be spread by getting into pools, hot tubs, rivers and lakes. Doesn’t chlorine keep us safe? Yes, but it takes time and some germs survive for days. So don’t swim when you have diarrhoea. Don’t get pool water in your mouth. Practise good toilet hygiene. Parents, change your tot’s diapers away from the poolside, since the germs can spread to other surfaces. ©2009/The New York Times
Honey, I (over)stuffed the kids!
An hour-long run is needed for an eight-year-old to use up the energy from a small packet of chips. Last month, an Australian study also found that a similar level of exercise (an hour’s vigorous playground activity or 48 minutes on a bike) was needed to offset just one row of a chocolate bar. The Children’s Nutrition Research Centre, Australia, reported a traditional fast-food “kiddie meal” of burger, fries and a soft drink called for nearly 5 hours of running or 3 hours on a bike. PTI
Ease that nagging itch
New research shows that a regimen of dilute bleach baths and antibiotic nasal ointment can reduce symptoms in children diagnosed with eczema, a common, often itchy, skin condition. “We and others have found anecdotally the addition of dilute (bleach) baths to be helpful in decreasing infection rates and disease severity in children with eczema,” Amy S. Paller and associates from the Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago note. REUTERS
Blood test: know your numbers
BLOOD PRESSURE Normal: 120/80 or less; prehyper- tension: 121-139/81-89; hypertension: 140/90 or higher
CHOLESTEROL Goal: 200 or less.
HDL (‘good’ cholesterol) Goal: 40 mg/dL or higher (exercise regularly, eat soy protein and plant stanol/sterol esters in fruits and vegetables)
LDL (‘bad’) cholesterol)Goal: 100 mg/dL or less (eat more fibre and healthy fats such as olive oil. Avoid animal and trans-fats). ©2009/THE NEW YORK TIMES
Light and bright wins the fight when it comes to better health. And while you’re getting trim and decluttering your dressing table, keep your eyes trained on the lighter side of life. Watching a funny video is said to improve pain tolerance in children, so maybe you should schedule cartoon hour before taking your child for that vaccination shot. Then visit the grandparents.
Laughter supports physical and psychological health in older adults, and a US study found older people smile not just in response to funny situations (telling jokes being 51% of those) but as a reaction to people and animals, especially children.
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