CareNotes: The Home Care Newsletter Vol 3. Issue 6
The Anti-Cancer Lifestyle
When David Servan-Schreiber, M.D., discovered he had a brain tumor, he was forced to reevaluate conventional cancer-beating methods and dig deep for something new and promising. In addition, Schreiber took a deeper look into what factors cause cancer, and how it can be prevented.
Schreiber notes that all of us have cancer cells within us, and it is our own protective systems, like our immune system, that keep two thirds of the population cancer-free. For the other one-third of the population that will most likely get cancer, however, Schreiber writes that we must protect our immune systems in order to make it harder for those cancer cells to take over the body. Some of these prevention techniques include lifestyle changes such as more exercise and stress-reducing activities such as breathing exercises.
In addition, Schreiber found several behaviors that could help fight cancer that one might not have guessed could prove to battle this disease.
- Avoid refined sugar
- Add spicy foods to your diet
- Exercise regularly
- Practice yoga and mindful meditation
- Avoid household toxins like Teflon
Though Schreiber has been living with cancer for 16 years, he finds himself to be a much happier and healthier person after his lifestyle change.
Boomers: Don’t outlive your money
With many of us Boomers now looking towards retirement and senior-citizenship, the question of how to remain financially independent is on everyone’s mind. Depending on your age, the answer is different. Younger Boomers in their 40s and 50s still have the opportunity to educate themselves about how to pay for those later years, while older boomers must figure out what to do now that they are living those later years.
A recent study conducted by Jeff Faust, a specialist for Allianz Life, showed that 61% of the study’s 3,200 participants feared outliving their income “more than they feared death.” Clearly, this is a real concern for many people. However, with over 78 million Boomers, financial specialists don’t have all the answers.
Jan Yager, Ph.D. from Consumer Affairs attempts to aid Boomers with her “7 Steps to Avoid Out-Living Your Money”:
- Keep working
- Be more frugal
- Pay off debt and avoid new debt
- Downsize or relocate
- Stay healthy
- Consult an attorney about asset protection
- Consider long term care insurance
While there are many Boomers with all different kinds of financial situations, Dr. Drummond Osmond, a financial advisor, often finds that everyone’s concerns are the same. Therefore, Osmond urges his clients to have a healthy relationship with their money, and to think about how they want to live before thinking about how much money they want to have.
In the end, no matter who you are, experts stress the importance of planning and being prepared in order to avoid outliving your money.
Studies: Coffee may lower Alzheimer’s risk
With Alzheimer’s becoming such a common and detrimental disease these days, some of you might be interested in hearing about a recent study that links less memory loss with caffeine. Dr. Jennifer Ashton recently appeared on The Early Show to talk about some of her latest findings. Dr. Ashton and her researchers conducted memory studies on lab mice, giving them 500 milligrams of caffeine per day, which translates to about 5 medium cups of coffee. According to Ashton, these mice were “induced to have the same kind of memory changes we see in Alzheimer’s disease, and they [researchers] found a very positive effect on their memory and thinking actions over a two-month period.” Researchers believe the cause of this positive outcome may be that caffeine reduces inflammation in the brain, reducing the amount of protein in the brain that is often found in Alzheimer’s patients.
While researchers are excited about these new findings, they stress that caffeine is a drug, and people with hypertension or irregular heartbeats should consumer caffeine in moderation. Ashton also suggests that individuals consult their physicians on the matter, because everyone’s body will react differently. These studies are not perfect yet, but more studies are still to come.
Home Care Assistance Caregiver of the Year
Congratulations to the Winner of the 2010 International Caregiver of the Year Award, Ms.June “Zoe” Kelly!
Every year at our Home Care Assistance Franchise Convention we select one of our 2,500 caregivers for the International Caregiver of the Year Award. This year, Ms. June Zoe Kelly received the award as a result of her hard work, warmth and sincerity as well as for her success in implementing the Balanced Care Method, a carefully crafted program of lifestyle behaviors centered on moderation and variety, into the everyday lives of her clients. Zoe was born in Montana, graduated from high school in Odessa, Texas and attended San Diego City College. Zoe was hired by the San Diego office in April 2009 and after excellent reviews from her first assignments, she was placed a very difficult situation last July. Zoe was assigned to take care of live-in clients, Dominic and Mary, an elderly couple living in Encinitas. Dominic had rapidly failing health and Mary was suffering from early dementia. A month after Zoe was assigned to the case, Dominic passed away and Zoe was confronted with assisting a grieving 85 year old widow.
Zoe’s immediate goal was to assist Mary through the grieving process to avoid physical and mental decline that often follows the passing of a beloved spouse. Zoe found aspects of The Balanced Care Method to be of most help to Mary. When Mary lost her appetite Zoe used her culinary skills to create a varied, nutritious menu of small meals and coaxed Mary to eat as much as possible, which eventually led to her regaining her appetite. Zoe also made certain that Mary participated in regular physical activity such as walks around the block, shopping trips and drives to the beach to keep her body fit and healthy.
Another goal that Zoe set for Mary was to keep her active mentally. Zoe made it a habit to engage Mary in a variety of activities that they would do together like reading the newspaper, surfing the internet and discussing current events and other topics of interest. While Zoe led Mary in pursuing mental and physical activities, she never took over any of the activities that Mary had been doing on her own, so that she felt she was maintaining her independence.
Zoe also helped Mary maintain social ties and achieve calmness by encouraging Mary to continue attending church as well as directing her attention to other small social projects. In fact, Zoe discovered an amazing charity project called “Knit-a-Square,” which encourages volunteers to knit or crochet 8’’ squares that are shipped to South Africa and made into blankets for AIDS orphans. Last year Zoe and Mary shipped 20 squares to South Africa and have a new goal for 2010 to make 105,000 squares! This is a perfect example of how Zoe not only helps individuals, but also those around her.
According to Zoe, “Everybody needs a purpose in life,” which she demonstrates daily through her passion of establishing and continuing purpose in the lives of all her clients. Zoe helps them find health, happiness and a positive sense of accomplishment which is why we are so excited to have her as our 2010 International Caregiver of the Year.