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The Most Important Principles for Staying Young: Don’t be a Nattering Nabob of Negativism Parent

8 May

Our basic premise is that your body is amazing. You get a do over. It doesn’t take that long, and it isn’t that hard if you know what to do. In these notes, we give you a short course in what to do so it becomes easy for you and for you to teach others. We want you to know how much control you have over both the quality and length of your life.

Back in the early 1970s, President Richard Nixon’s VP, Spiro Agnew, called investigative journalists “nattering nabobs of negativism.” But it was the VP who showed up in the negative column when reporters at The Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and The Baltimore Sun discovered that Agnew had taken bribes and didn’t pay taxes while vice president. He resigned in 1973.

An analysis of two studies, both published in the journal Psychological Science, clearly demonstrates that negative-ness often backfires. Researchers found children of parents who viewed them as overweight as four- to five-year-olds packed on the most pounds over the next decade than children whose parents thought they were a “normal” weight (even if they were in fact overweight or obese).

Seems that when kids grow up with a negative perception of their body, they’re more likely to develop disordered eating patterns, like dieting followed by binge eating, which eventually leads to weight gain.

So Mom and Dad, if you think your child is overweight, look for positive ways to promote health and a positive self-image. Get your child involved in school play groups and sports; kids need to be active at least 90 minutes a day. Make cooking a joint adventure by allowing your child to discover healthy food choices by sampling (don’t force it) a wide variety of whole food ingredients. Think of food as something to be shared and appreciated—not as a reward or a punishment.

Thanks for reading. Feel free to send questions—to youdocs@gmail.com, and some of them we may know enough to answer (we’ll try to get answers for you if we do not know).

Young Dr Mike Roizen (aka, The Enforcer)

PS: Thank you for making AgeProof: Living Longer Without Running Out of Money or Breaking a Hip (which was released on February 28th—grab your copy at your favorite bookseller if you haven’t already) a NY Times and WSJ Bestseller!

 

 

NOTE: You should NOT take this as medical advice.
This article is of the opinion of its author.
Before you do anything, please consult with your doctor.

You can follow Dr Roizen on twitter @YoungDrMike (and get updates on the latest and most important medical stories of the week). The YOU docs have two newly revised books: The patron saint “book” of this column YOU Staying Young—revised and YOU: The Owner’s Manual…revised —yes a revision of the book that started Dr Oz to being Dr Oz. These makes great gifts—so do YOU: ON a Diet and YOU: The Owner’s Manual for teens.

Michael F. Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer and chair of the Wellness Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. His radio show streams live on http://www.radioMD.com Saturdays from 5-7 p.m. He is the co-author of 4 #1 NY Times Best Sellers including: YOU Staying Young.

You’re Likely to Live Decades Longer Than You Expect, So How Will You Pay for those Extra 30 Years?

10 Apr

Our basic premise is that your body is amazing. You get a do over. It doesn’t take that long, and it isn’t that hard if you know what to do. In these notes, we give you a short course in what to do so it becomes easy for you and for you to teach others. We want you to know how much control you have over both the quality and length of your life.

Recently, I talked about the possibility, maybe the probability, that if you live beyond 2023, the average age of death may exceed 120—with the quality of life you had at age 45. (And yes, you can even improve on the quality of your health at age 45. We consider that in our new book—shameless plug—but it is really good: AgeProof: Living Longer Without Running Out of Money or Breaking a Hip, which was released on February 28th, 2017).

At no other time in our history has AgeProofing been as important as it is now; that’s because we’re living longer and longer—and need more money and better health to last those extra decades (yes, decades). While this change in longevity should be exciting, the truth is that longevity comes with a price. Because we’re living longer, it’s more expensive to fund retirement. That’s true even if you’re in good shape. Traditionally, maybe we lived only a decade or so past retirement, but what happens when we live for 30 or more years after we stop earning? Surveys from financial institutions note that running out of money before running out of time is by far our biggest financial fear. One survey even found that running short of funds is a bigger fear than even death. Going the distance means we need a new set of skills, new strategies, and a new way of thinking.

The problem that many of us face is twofold. For one, we think of money and health the way we think of large-toothed forest-roaming beasts—they scare the heck out of us. Much of that fear is caused because we close our eyes, hope for the best, and are timid about confronting issues that feel as comfortable as a pair of not-quite-dry-from-the-dryer underwear. And that’s something we have to change—that is, our attitude on the topic. We have to be open and honest, and have frank conversations about subjects that can make us squirm.

Not only are money and health important issues when it comes to life satisfaction but they’re also cyclically connected—that is, how healthy you are has an effect on your bottom line, and your handling of money issues has an effect on how healthy you are. That’s because healthcare can be extremely costly (in direct ways, like the actual expenses of insurance and medical procedures, and in indirect ways, like being out of work because of health problems). Financial problems are also the biggest source of stress for Americans. Scientists have directly linked stress to a whole bevy of medical issues, including heart disease, sleep problems, weight issues, and depression.

We have found that there are eight important ways to stay well and eight important ways to stay flush, and they intersect—and your future happiness depends on them. By diving into those areas—and, more important, the science behind them—we’ve developed a new approach to help you control your life and your happiness. What we’re giving you is a new lens through which to view the choices you face, the decisions you make, the behaviors you adopt, and the goals you reach for. All drive toward the ultimate goal: AgeProofing your life by keeping your body young and your finances secure enough to go the distance (I teamed up with the Today Show’s Financial Editor Jean Chatzky—she taught me a ton about finances, which we share with you).

Jean and I found the common principles and themes for how to approach improving both your health and wealth. When you see the links, you’ll gain inside insight into how you can use the same principles to improve your health and wealth. For example, budgeting is something you may think of as something you do with money, but you can take the same approach to how you eat as well. You will also learn how to develop teams of comrades—professional and personal—who can help you face obstacles, make smart decisions, and fend off temptations.

Let me give three summaries from our new book:

1. You can’t take back time. But you can make up for lost time.

2. Don’t think of problems as dead-end streets. You always have the options to find side streets, alleys, and other routes to get you out of trouble and on the highway to healthy and happy living.

3. The thing that scares many people about the problems they’re having is that they know they might have issues that need to be dealt with, but they don’t confront them. Only when you get a full assessment of where you are can you make the changes and employ the tactics to help you catch up.

Yes, the book AgeProof: Living Longer without running out of money or breaking a hip has a safety deposit box full of information, and Jean and I are giving you the key. The AgeProof prescriptions are doable, are helpful, and make sense. I’ll try to summarize many of these for you over the coming year. We hope to help you live much younger & longer—so start preparing.

Thanks for reading. Feel free to send questions—to youdocs@gmail.com, and some of them we may know enough to answer (we’ll try to get answers for you if we do not know).

Young Dr Mike Roizen (aka, The Enforcer)

NOTE: You should NOT take this as medical advice.
This article is of the opinion of its author.
Before you do anything, please consult with your doctor.

You can follow Dr Roizen on twitter @YoungDrMike (and get updates on the latest and most important medical stories of the week). The YOU docs have two newly revised books: The patron saint “book” of this column YOU Staying Young—revised and YOU: The Owner’s Manual…revised —yes a revision of the book that started Dr Oz to being Dr Oz. These makes great gifts—so do YOU: ON a Diet and YOU: The Owner’s Manual for teens.

Michael F. Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer and chair of the Wellness Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. His radio show streams live on http://www.radioMD.com Saturdays from 5-7 p.m. He is the co-author of 4 #1 NY Times Best Sellers including: YOU Staying Young.

The Evils of Dormant Butt Syndrome and How to Save Money in a Medical Environment

9 Mar

Our basic premise is that your body is amazing.  You get a do over. It doesn’t take that long, and it isn’t that hard if you know what to do.  In these notes, we give you a short course in what to do so it becomes easy for you and for you to teach others. We want you to know how much control you have over both the quality and length of your life.

This month, I want to give you two tips—one on how to save money in a medical environment (from my new book) and one on dormant butt syndrome (DBS).  Let’s start with DBS.

Riddle me this… What do Mia Hamm, Michael Phelps, and NFL quarterbacks all have in common? Toned glutes! And if you think that’s not something to comment on—take a seat and listen up. According to Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center physical therapist Chris Kolba, PhD, millions of North Americans who sit all day at work or are generally sedentary have developed Dormant Butt Syndrome (DBS).

And those flaccid backsides aren’t just making your pants look baggy, they contribute to a roster of back, hip, and knee problems. Your butt muscles support your pelvis, hips, and torso and act as a shock absorber when you walk. But if they’re dormant, you end with tight hip flexors, lower back pain, and even knee problems that can lead to a meniscus injury. So get up off that backside!

Did you know more than half of you sit for at almost eight hours a day? Sitting six or more hours a day elevates your risk of dying from cancer and other major diseases!  But changing your habits so you sit for less than three hours a day can add an extra two years to your lifespan.

So, stand up every 30-60 minutes—go walk the stairs in your office building, speed walk around the parking lot, and/or do stretches at your desk. At home, try stretch bands while you watch TV. Get a pedometer and aim for 10,000 steps daily.

Avoiding DBS is one way to reduce medical expenses.  Here is an even more powerful way to stay healthy and save medical expenses: meditate for 5 minutes each morning and each night. This alone reduced expenses and the need for medical encounters by 43% in one recent study from the Benson-Henry Institute at Harvard (PLOS One October 13, 2015). That’s not a typo, forty-three percent!  Stress is the greatest ager and financial stress needs to be dealt with directly (see our book AgeProof: Living Longer Without Running Out of Money or Breaking a Hip). But meditation alone in studies at Cleveland Clinic resulted in reduced costs, a 7% increase in productivity, and both weight loss and waist-loss. It’s easy to do, too.  Online programs that teach 8 different techniques of mindfulness (you only need use one) abound like Cleveland Clinic’s StressFreeNow with e-coaching.

Thanks for reading. Feel free to send questions—to youdocs@gmail.com, and some of them we may know enough to answer (we’ll try to get answers for you if we do not know).

Young Dr Mike Roizen (aka, The Enforcer)

PS: Please do look for and order the new book by Jean Chatzky and myself, AgeProof: Living Longer Without Running Out of Money or Breaking a Hip, that was released on February 28th, 2017.

NOTE: You should NOT take this as medical advice.
This article is of the opinion of its author.
Before you do anything, please consult with your doctor.

You can follow Dr Roizen on twitter @YoungDrMike (and get updates on the latest and most important medical stories of the week). The YOU docs have two newly revised books: The patron saint “book” of this column YOU Staying Young—revised and YOU: The Owner’s Manual…revised —yes a revision of the book that started Dr Oz to being Dr Oz. These makes great gifts—so do YOU: ON a Diet and YOU: The Owner’s Manual for teens.

Michael F. Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer and chair of the Wellness Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. His radio show streams live on http://www.radioMD.com Saturdays from 5-7 p.m. He is the co-author of 4 #1 NY Times Best Sellers including: YOU Staying Young.

Do I Really Have Much Control Over My Longevity

9 Feb

Our basic premise is that your body is amazing.  You get a do over. It doesn’t take that long, and it isn’t that hard if you know what to do.  In these notes, we give you a short course in what to do so it becomes easy for you and for you to teach others. We want you to know how much control you have over both the quality and length of your life.

About ten years ago during a seminar at Case Western Reserve University, I speculated that aging research was speeding so fast that one or more of the students in attendance might have a chance to live to age 160, and many to 120, with the quality of life of the typical 45 year old of 2006.

A reporter from the Cleveland Plain Dealer attended that seminar and mocked my statement in an article that garnered the front page of that newspaper. I was ridiculed. It hurt me, even aged me. The reporter didn’t bother to write the gist of my argument—that enough progress was evident in each of the 14 areas of aging research, and enough money spent in each of these 14 areas, that we were entering the exponential phase of progress, much like computers and the internet entered in the mid 1990s.

In fact, most money spent for research on aging is focused on anti-aging. This area has the goal of slowing the aging processes through biochemical and behavioral therapies. It is now generally recognized that you can delay the breakdown of critical biological systems and keep yourself healthier for longer. And we’ve seen some substantial progress that we’ve reported in this column such as taking 900 mg of DHA a day and doing 18 hours of “speed of processing” games over 10 years making your brain the equivalent of six years younger each, or a daily multivitamin for 20 years decreasing cancer risk by 18 percent and cardiovascular risk by more than 20%.

These data have been replicated in several studies and make up some of the 26 (men) and 29 (woman) years you can make your RealAge younger by avoiding toxins, managing stress, eating only foods that love you back, and doing all four forms of physical activity that will help you get to 100 AgeProof—that is with your faculties intact.  (We talk about all of these in our new book, AgeProof: Living Longer Without Running Out of Money or Breaking a Hip, to be published on February 28, 2017—shameless plug, you can pre-order it on Amazon.)

And now to my 160 years old prediction…  Last month, scientists from the prestigious Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla presented evidence that they unlocked powers in mice genomes to reverse aging and repair even major injuries.   The age reversal principle they used is pretty simple in concept. The DNA of all of our cells came from one set of cells, and possibly could revert to those of earlier cells.  The Salk researchers have figured out how to do this in mice. The mice got some gene therapy reversion processes (essentially in their drinking water), and then lived 30% longer.

It appears the cells and the organs got rid of the errors the mice cells had accumulated, and the muscles and organs of these mice looked many years younger than those from a control group.

The Salk Institute generated some media coverage, but not much. You may not have heard of it—most docs I talk to haven’t either. If the researchers are correct and they can translate their work to humans relatively easily, then it will be the end of the frailty and diseases associated with old age. More dramatically, it’s the elimination of maximum human life spans (currently about 120 years), and maybe as much as an average life span of 160.

Why didn’t this get more media coverage? Part of the problem according to Patrick Cox (who did cover this in his Technology Innovation blog) is that age reversal just seems too good to be true.

You and I need to get psychologically capable of processing the possibility of ageless individuals. Maybe ourselves.  And that changes everything—just like we discussed at the Case seminar in 2006. (By the way, I am still waiting for the Plain Dealer and their former columnist’s apologies.)

Thanks for reading. Feel free to send questions—to youdocs@gmail.com, and some of them we may know enough to answer (we’ll try to get answers for you if we do not know).

             Young Dr Mike Roizen (aka, The Enforcer)

 PS: Please do look for and pre-order the new book by Jean Chatzky and myself, AgeProof: Living Longer Without Running Out of Money or Breaking a Hip, to be released on February 28th, 2017.

 

 NOTE: You should NOT take this as medical advice. This article is of the opinion of its author. Before you do anything, please consult with your doctor.

You can follow Dr Roizen on twitter @YoungDrMike (and get updates on the latest and most important medical stories of the week).  The YOU docs have two newly revised books: The patron saint “book” of this column YOU Staying Young—revised and YOU: The Owner’s Manual…revised —yes a revision of the book that started Dr Oz to being Dr OzThese makes great gifts—so do YOU: ON a Diet and YOU: The Owner’s Manual for teens.  

Michael F. Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer and chair of the Wellness Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. His radio show streams live on http://www.radioMD.com Saturdays from 5-7 p.m. He is the co-author of 4 #1 NY Times Best Sellers including: YOU Staying Young.

What is Healthy, and Can Cancer Really Be Reduced with Exercise?

9 Jan

Our basic premise is that your body is amazing. You get a do over. It doesn’t take that long, and it isn’t that hard if you know what to do. In these notes, we give you a short course in what to do so it becomes easy for you and for you to teach others. We want you to know how much control you have over both the quality and length of your life.

This month, I am answering two questions sent in by readers:
1. What is healthy, and what does that claim mean on food packaging?
2. Does physical activity really defeat cancer?

Until the late 1800s, bathing was considered unhealthy, and a thin layer of dirt was thought to protect a person from bad elements in the air that could permeate the skin and cause disease! Tomatoes—also called poison apples—were considered toxic by Europeans for almost 200 years (until Neapolitan pizza became the rage in the late 1880s).

And almonds, avocados, and salmon were found to be UNHEALTHY—wait for it—in 2015 by the Food and Drug Administration’s own calculations!

That’s right—the standards that the FDA uses to evaluate if a food is “healthy” or not are sadly misleading. Low-fat breakfast pastries fit the “healthy” definition because the standards don’t consider sugar content or how processed a food is!

And that super-healthy trio of salmon, avocado, and walnuts? They get a thumbs down because they have more fat per serving than the FDA standards say is good for you—without considering the types of fat they contain. Fat in walnuts, avocados, or salmon is not much of a health concern because the fat they dish up is super-healthy ALA and DHA omega-3s and/or a rainbow of nutrients.

The FDA says it wants to upgrade the standards, but in the meantime if you’re looking for healthy foods, don’t rely on packaging that screams HEALTHY. (Choose packaged foods with no added sugars or syrups, only 100% whole grains, only a small amount of sat fats and no trans fats.

Beware of low-fat, sweetened with sugar or syrups foods—they’re still bad for your heart, brain and metabolism.)

And yes, there is plenty of data that physical activity helps you prevent cancer. One study recently published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine reviewed data concerning 1.4 million people and found that folks who got greater amounts of physical activity outside of work had a 42 percent lower risk of esophageal adenocarcinoma; a 26 percent lower for lung cancer; a 23 percent lower risk of liver and kidney cancer; a 22 percent lower for gastric cardia; a 21 percent lower for endometrial cancer; a 20 percent for myeloid leukemia; a 17 percent for myeloma; a 16 percent for colon cancer; a 15 percent for head and neck cancer; a 13 percent lower for rectal and bladder cancer; and a 10 percent lower for breast cancer. And, that was mostly regardless of body size or smoking history.

Add a healthy diet with lots of fruits and vegetables, avoid tobacco and other smoke, and stress management and you may have a great chance at living a long, healthy life.

Want more data? Another study out of Roswell Park Cancer Institute found that women who got more than just four days of physical activity a month were two and a half times less likely to develop cervical cancer than women who reported getting less physical activity.

So what do you need to do to take advantage of this great cancer-dodging news? We recommend a walking routine 5-6 days a week with a target for 10,000 steps a day. Your best bet: use a fitness tracker or pedometer; enlist a walking buddy; and get good shoes! As you increase your distance and speed, add in strength training for 30 minutes 2-3 days a week (at the gym or at home with stretchy bands or hand weights). Then, as you feel more physically confident, consider shaking it up by trying swimming, bicycling, playing tennis. And that makes your RealAge younger not just now, but for the long term.

For tips on walking and getting more physically active check out sharecare.com. And yes, look for the new book by Jean Chatzky and myself, AgeProof: Living Longer Without Running Out of Money or Breaking a Hip, to be released February 28th, 2017.

Thanks for reading. Feel free to send questions—to youdocs@gmail.com, and some of them we may know enough to answer (we’ll try to get answers for you if we do not know).

Young Dr Mike Roizen (aka, The Enforcer)

NOTE: You should NOT take this as medical advice.
This article is of the opinion of its author.
Before you do anything, please consult with your doctor.

You can follow Dr Roizen on twitter @YoungDrMike (and get updates on the latest and most important medical stories of the week). The YOU docs have tow newly revised books: The patron saint “book” of this column YOU Staying Young—revised and YOU: The Owner’s Manual…revised —yes a revision of the book that started Dr Oz to being Dr Oz. These makes great gifts—so do YOU: ON a Diet and YOU: The Owner’s Manual for teens. And, the new book by Dr Mike Roizen: This is YOUR Do-Over

Michael F. Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer and chair of the Wellness Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. His radio show streams live on http://www.radioMD.com Saturdays from 5-7 p.m. He is the co-author of 4 #1 NY Times Best Sellers including: YOU Staying Young.

What Does Paul Bunyan Have to Do with Pain As You Age?

8 Dec

Our basic premise is that your body is amazing.  You get a do over. It doesn’t take that long, and it isn’t that hard if you know what to do.  In these notes, we give you a short course in what to do so it becomes easy for you and for you to teach others. We want you to know how much control you have over both the quality and length of your life.

This month, let’s talk about foot pain, why seniors are more vulnerable, and how you can prevent it early with your shoe choices.  We know chiropractic treatment is the least expensive and quickest way to return to normal function if you have back pain. But if foot pain or bunions are present AND you have back pain, you may also need to address your shoes.

Paul Bunyan and his sidekick Babe, the Blue Ox, were characters in lumberjacks’ folklore for years before William Laughead composed a direct mail pamphlet for the Red River Lumber Company in 1916. Then, the duo became a sensation across the United States, and with his massive boots and enormous stride, Bunyan seemed unstoppable.

But anyone with the Bunion Blues will tell you that real bunions can stop you in your tracks. Today,  according to a review of the 2009 Framingham Foot Study, bunions affect  23 percent of people aged 18 to 65, and 36 percent of those older than 65.

What is a bunion? A bunion (hallux valgus) is a painful, bony bump at the base and side of the big toe. It often happens when the top of big toe is consistently pushed against the toe next to it, forcing the bottom joint to stick out. Women’s narrow-toed, high-heeled shoes are a major cause; though toe shape and arthritis can also play a role.

And seniors have more pain from the same stimulus as those who are younger, which offers another reason to change your shoes now. George Burns said it best. As he approached his eleventh decade, the great vaudeville, radio, film, and television comedian said, “I was brought up to respect my elders, so now I don’t have to respect anybody.”

But until you live to such a ripe old age, it’s a good idea to respect your elders and offer them a bit of extra attention and understanding.  That’s because in addition to being older and wiser, the elderly also have to contend with pain that’s more pronounced and lasts longer.

Researchers from the University of Florida tested the pain response of a group of volunteers (average age = 21) and an older group with an average age of 68. They found that while both groups were exposed to similar levels of pain, in older adults, levels of cytokines—immune system markers of inflammation that indicate the presence of pain—were higher and stayed elevated longer. The researchers recommend older adults should not tough it out, but treat pain early. Even better, prevent it. So here is our take on bunions…

If you have a bunion, here’s what to do: Wear more comfortable shoes. (Duh! YES, the earlier you abandon high heels, the less likely a problem that requires surgery will develop. And abandon them not just for a day, but for a while; wider shoes help too!)

Discuss treatment options with a podiatrist or other healthcare professionals. Treatment options include padding or an orthosis (corrective shoe insert), ice, ibuprofen, cortisone injection and, lastly, surgery. Osteotomy is surgery performed to realign the joint; exostectomy removes the bump.

If avoiding surgery isn’t enough of an incentive to get you to put away those stilettos (stick with 2-inch heels, or no heels, even better), taking better care of your feet can also help you dodge nerve damage, lower back pain, a shortened Achilles tendon, and sciatica, and that makes your RealAge younger not just now, but for the long term.

Thanks for reading. Feel free to send questions—to youdocs@gmail.com, and some of them we may know enough to answer (we’ll try to get answers for you if we do not know).

Young Dr Mike Roizen (aka, The Enforcer)

 

 NOTE: You should NOT take this as medical advice. This article is of the opinion of its author. Before you do anything, please consult with your doctor.

 

You can follow Dr Roizen on twitter @YoungDrMike (and get updates on the latest and most important medical stories of the week).  The YOU docs have tow newly revised books: The patron saint “book” of this column YOU Staying Young—revised and YOU: The Owner’s Manual…revised —yes a revision of the book that started Dr Oz to being Dr OzThese makes great gifts—so do YOU: ON a Diet and YOU: The Owner’s Manual for teens.  And, the new book by Dr Mike Roizen: This is YOUR Do-Over

Michael F. Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer and chair of the Wellness Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. His radio show streams live on http://www.radioMD.com Saturdays from 5-7 p.m. He is the co-author of 4 #1 NY Times Best Sellers including: YOU Staying Young.