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Would You Trust An Unhealthy And Unfit Cardiologist?

There was a very controversial presentation made at a recent meeting of heart doctors in Canada. I’ve been stewing about what to say about it for a week.

The title speaks to its inflammation:

Fat, unfit, unmotivated: Cardiologist, heal thyself

The presenter that made the stir, pediatric cardiologist, and IronPerson, Dr. Brian McCrindle (Toronto) argued that overweight, unfit doctors are doing their patients a disservice. His bottom line: cardiologists are acting like the rest of Western society. They are not living a healthy lifestyle.

He made three major points. (in-depth coverage can be viewed here, on TheHeart.org)

*This blog post was originally published at Dr John M*

Most Americans Don’t Know What Healthy Eating Means

Jessie GrumanOnly one in 10 respondents to a national survey could estimate how many calories they should consume in a day.

Seventy-nine percent make few or no attempts to pay attention to the balance between the calories they consume and expend in a day.

These and other piquant findings from the online 2011 Food and Health Survey fielded by the International Food Information Council Foundation (IFIC) struck home last week as I smacked up against my own ignorance about a healthy diet and the difficulty of changing lifelong eating habits.

The confluence of my failure to gain weight after cancer treatment and a blood test suggesting pre-diabetes meant that as of last Tuesday, I have been on an eat-specific-types-of-food-every-hour-and-write-it-down regimen.  And despite a lifetime of recommending that people change their behavior to become healthier, I am frustrated as I try to follow my own advice. I am bewildered about what I’m supposed to eat.  Finding it, preparing it and then eating it at the right time requires untold contortions and inconvenience. Writing it all down is tedious.  I don’t have time for this – I have a job, obligations. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Prepared Patient Forum: What It Takes Blog*

6 Tips To A Simpler Lifestyle

I like to pass on good tips, and these ways to simplify your life make a lot of sense. The constant stress we feel because life is so complicated isn’t good for our health. Here are six tips to have a simpler lifestyle:

1. De-Clutter Your Home

Look around. If you have piles of paper, too many “things” and nic-nacs laying around, it’s hard to think clearly and function. An open, clear space allows our minds to feel open and more peaceful. Tackle one room at a time. Be ruthless and donate or toss everything that isn’t useful, beautiful, or has special memories.

2. Limit Family Activities

Try to force family members to choose only those activities that are most important. Many of us are over-scheduled and have no time to “just see where the day will take us.” Thirty years ago no stores were open on Sundays and there wasn’t much to do except go on picnics or just hang out with friends and family. It’s okay to “veg out” and may even be good for your family’s health. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at EverythingHealth*

Heart Disease And Working Overtime

The European Heart Journal studied 6,000 British civil servants and followed them for 11 years. They found that working an extra 3 to 4 hours a day is associated with increased coronary heart disease.

The researchers controlled and adjusted for lifestyle, cardiac risk factors, and other factors that would skew the results, and still found that people who worked 3 to 4 extra hours a day had a 60 percent increase in risk for heart disease. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at EverythingHealth*

Healthy, Active Kids Come From Healthy, Active Adults

First RunKids are like dogs — you can train them until they’re too old to train. Then they’re going to do whatever they want.

The key to getting kids to exercise is to make it fun for them. But they aren’t going to exercise if it isn’t made a part of their normal routine. It’s up to adults to train them.

Mrs. Happy and I had the joyous opportunity of inviting our 10-year-old niece to her first-ever running event. She had never ever run in a race before. We did the two-mile race and she loved it. And amazingly, she finished without stopping — not even once.

Our nation is raising a nation of fat and lazy kids because we’re lazy adults. We drive everywhere. We sit at our desks. We get food on the run. We watch a lot of television. We surf the Net a bunch. And we have stopped moving. We have literally stopped moving. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at The Happy Hospitalist*

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

It’s no secret that doctors are disappointed with the way that the U.S. healthcare system is evolving. Most feel helpless about improving their work conditions or solving technical problems in patient care. Fortunately one young medical student was undeterred by the mountain of disappointment carried by his senior clinician mentors…

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How To Be A Successful Patient: Young Doctors Offer Some Advice

I am proud to be a part of the American Resident Project an initiative that promotes the writing of medical students residents and new physicians as they explore ideas for transforming American health care delivery. I recently had the opportunity to interview three of the writing fellows about how to…

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Latest Book Reviews

Book Review: Is Empathy Learned By Faking It Till It’s Real?

I m often asked to do book reviews on my blog and I rarely agree to them. This is because it takes me a long time to read a book and then if I don t enjoy it I figure the author would rather me remain silent than publish my…

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The Spirit Of The Place: Samuel Shem’s New Book May Depress You

When I was in medical school I read Samuel Shem s House Of God as a right of passage. At the time I found it to be a cynical yet eerily accurate portrayal of the underbelly of academic medicine. I gained comfort from its gallows humor and it made me…

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Eat To Save Your Life: Another Half-True Diet Book

I am hesitant to review diet books because they are so often a tangled mess of fact and fiction. Teasing out their truth from falsehood is about as exhausting as delousing a long-haired elementary school student. However after being approached by the authors’ PR agency with the promise of a…

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