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October- 2011

healthy valley

Adamari López Charlotte Libov

You’ve Just Been Diagnosed With Breast Cancer: Now What? America Cantu, RN

Kindness Makes a Difference Maria Luisa Salcines ISSUE 36

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healthy valley magazine


Publisher Mauricio Portillo Editor in Chief Claudia Portillo Del Valle Marketing Director Arnaldo Del Valle Copy Editor Lora Incardona Website Director Andres Rojas Graphic Design Healthy Valley Media Photography Lina Tobon Contributing Writers Ana C Posada-Díaz, M.D. Rafael Amaro, M.D. America Cantu, RN Caitlin Martone Leon Woloski Maria Luisa Salcines Charlotte Libov Rubel Shelly Brandi Nichole McGee Account Executives Teresa Santos Jennifer Cavazos Isabel Cantu

WHAT’S INSIDE 10 The Unheralded Virtue 12 Antisocial Personality Disorder 14 Kindness Makes a Difference 16 Acid Reflux: more than just heartburn 20 Adamari Lopez 22 You’ve Just Been Diagnosed With Breast Cancer: Now What? 28 Valley Hospital Awarded 1st Joint Replacement “Gold Seal

of Approval” South of San Antonio

30 The Bone and Joint Decade 34 Back to School Health Tips 36 Join Kids and Families Around the Globe to Walk and 801 E. Fern Ave, Suite 131 McAllen, TX 78501 PH 956.525.0240

Bicycle to School in October

38 How to Say Good-Bye to Math Phobia 42 Eliminate Stomach Fat and Lower Belly Bulge

healthy valley magazine is a free monthly publication. All contents are protected by copyright and may not be reproduced without written consent from the publisher. The material in this magazine is intended to be of general informational use and is not intended to constitute medical advice, probable diagnosis, or recommended treatments. healthy valley magazine and its contributors accept no responsibility for inaccuracies, and the advertiser is solely responsible for ad content and holds publisher harmless from any error. Printed in Mexico

44 American Heart Association Encouraging Businesses

to Take Steps That Will Save Billion$

Questions? PH: 956.525.0240

Healthy Valley Magazine 801 E Fern Ave, Suite 131- 132 McAllen, Tx 78501



Claudia Portillo Editor in Chief

Sing to the Future with All Your Heart I am writing this letter to you, not in the rush of the magazine closing days in the office surrounded by the Healthy Valley staff, but in the peace and serenity of my home, something which is very unusual for me and something that I can surely be thankful for, because lately I have not had much time to spend with my family due to our busy school-year schedules. As I sit here on the terrace I can’t help but wonder how I ended up where I am today, and although I still don’t know, the one thing I am sure of is that God’s well-intended plan for my family has surely blossomed. Today I can say with certainty that in the midst of the many changes that we have faced, I have understood that no matter why we are each led down our own individual paths, every day and every situation in life can only work for the best if we approach them with color, life and hope and with the positive mind and attitude that require singing to the future with all our hearts. Merely because we learn about health does not mean that we are healthier individuals, but the more information we have the better. In this issue, as always, we come prepared to give you the key elements of the wellness equation. A few doctors in our community have come together to bring information on different aspects of health and, as we celebrate Breast Cancer Awareness, Adamari Lopez, our cover story, opens up to Charlote Livov about her battle with breast cancer and shows us the roles that love, education and determination played in her fight against cancer. That being said, I am grateful to be part of a Healthy Valley and of a community that is rapidly growing in knowledge of health, always searching for what’s next and eager to educate themselves towards a healthier and happier life. I invite you to take the time to find me on Facebook and give me your feedback or e-mail me your thoughts—but if you see me around, maybe we can discuss health over a cup of tea.

Claudia Portillo


healthy body, mind & soul


The Unheralded Virtue


Antisocial Personality Disorder


Kindness Makes a Difference


Acid Reflux: more than just heartburn


Adamari Lopez


You’ve Just Been Diagnosed With Breast Cancer: Now What?

28 Valley Hospital Awarded 1st Joint Replacement “Gold Seal of Approval” South of San Antonio 30

The Bone and Joint Decade



Name a virtue that you admire in others and want to cultivate in yourself.

The Unheralded Virtue

So, what word came to mind? Courage would have been a good answer, for so many people these days seem to lack the ability to confront their personal fears or to face life’s uncertainties with confidence. Another good answer would be justice; it is concern for the public good that demands we look outside our selfishness to meet others’ needs and to protect their persons and rights. Self-control or the ability to practice moderation and restraint may be your immediate concern; if you are battling weight or smoking or temper, it probably ranks high on your list of desired virtues. I dare to say prudence didn’t come to mind—though you may have used a contemporary term such as good judgment or discretion; it is the counter to thoughtless and reckless behaviors. Those four qualities—temperance, prudence, courage and justice— are often termed the cardinal virtues to Western civilization. As far back as Plato and Aristotle, they received praise; add such names as Seneca, Thomas Aquinas and Ben Franklin to the list, if you wish. These are praiseworthy traits. And all are consistent with the great ethical teachings of Judaism and Christianity. A virtue that gets little attention and practically no praise in modern settings is humility. Perhaps it is because our culture tends less and less to consult or quote biblical materials in its discussions of character. Perhaps, too, it is because we seem to have equated a healthy sense of self-esteem with personal arrogance. In athletics, we call it “swagger.” In the halls of the academy, it is “pomp and circumstance.” In business and high finance, it is “perks.” On the streets, it can be called anything from “attitude” to “posturing” to “respect.” And while none of these terms is evil or inappropriate, our shallow culture has come to define them in terms of a feigned superiority that lets one person or group step on another. So the football player dances in the end zone or over the opponent he tackles, and the pitcher in baseball pretends to be a gunslinger when he strikes out the other team’s cleanup hitter. In the university or company, the person who gets the promotion gloats over the one who didn’t. On the streets, she dresses like a whore and wants the reputation of being “a mean girl,” or he works hard at the glare and manner of a thug. The result is not healthy self-esteem on display but boorish, uncivil and cruel behavior—behavior of the sort that creates fights and vendettas when two persons or groups of the same mindset meet. Humility means acknowledging that we all stand on others’ shoulders. We all know too little to put others down. We all owe it to the other person to hear her point and to try to understand his perspective. C.S. Lewis made this important point: “Humility is not thinking less of oneself but thinking of oneself less.”

“Pride leads to disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom” (Proverbs 11:2 NLT).

by Rubel Shelly 10

All our surgical services are provided at Valley hospitals or outpatient ambulatory surgery centers (ASC). SERVICES Adults and Pediatric from newborn SPINE • Cervical and lumbar stenosis • Disc herniations and disc replacement • Spine trauma and stabilization • Spine and spinal cord tumors • Congenital spinal disorders in adults and children • Vertebral osteoplasty BRAIN TUMOR • Gliomas and glioblastoma • Meningiomas • Tumors • Pituitary tumors • Acoustic neuromas NERVE • Carpal tunnel release • Ulnar nerve release or transposition • Peroneal neuropathy • Peripheral nerve tumors VASCULAR • Aneuysms • Arteriovenous malformations • Carotid stenosis • Acute stroke FUNCTIONAL • Intractable epilepsy • Deep Brain Stimulator for Parkinson’s disease • Essential tremor • Trigeminal neuralgia • Hemifacial spasm PAIN • Spinal cord stimulators • Intrathecal pumps • Dorsal root entry zone procedure • Cordotomy for cancer pain • Motor cortex stimulation TRAUMA • Intracranial pressure monitoring • Burr holes for evacuation of subdural hematoma • Craniotomy for evacuation of hemorrhage • Decompressive hemicraniectomy • Spinal decompression and stabilization 24 hours notice is appreciated if you are unable to keep your appointment



Antisocial Personality Disorder Antisocial personality disorder has been previously known as both psychopathic personality and sociopathic personality. People who suffer from this disorder experience little sympathy or compassion for others, lack respect for law and authority, and repeatedly violate other people’s rights. True remorse and guilt are absent; if caught, sociopaths might profess remorse, but such manipulative contrition rings false. Their lives are marked by lying, infidelity and irresponsibility. Antisocial personality disorder is classified in the DSM IV TR (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, Text Revision) as a cluster B personality (personalities that are erratic and dramatic). It is defined as a pervasive pattern of disregard for and violation of the rights of others occurring since age 15 years. Characteristic symptoms are deceitfulness, impulsivity, irritability and aggressiveness, reckless disregard for safety of self and others, consistent irresponsibility, failure to conform to social norms and lack of remorse. The individual has to be at least age 18 years to be formally diagnosed with this condition, and there has to be some evidence of conduct disorder with onset before age 15 years. Antisocial personality disorder is diagnosed much more frequently in males than in females. The intensity of the symptoms peaks during the 20s and then may decrease over time. Some complications include depression, anxiety, divorce, social isolation, imprisonment, financial problems, violent death and suicide. Abuse or dependence on alcohol and other substances is common. Genetic and environmental factors are involved and being abandoned as a child appears particularly important. Childhood attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is often found in the history of these patients. Treatment for this disorder is very rarely sought. Psychotherapy (psychodynamic, cognitive behavioral, psycho education) is sometimes effective and may be provided in individual, group or family sessions. Medications are used to treat associated symptoms or severe impulsivity and aggressiveness. Inpatient care, day hospital or residential treatments are sometimes necessary in order to provide a safe and therapeutic environment. Unfortunately, long-term incarceration until the sociopath “burns out� is sometimes the best alternative. By Ana C Posada-Diaz, M.D. Psychiatrist



Kindness Makes a Difference Many years ago while watching the Disney Channel with my daughter, I heard a wonderful story about the north wind and the sun. The north wind tells the sun it can blow a coat off a man walking on earth. The wind gathers all its strength and blows, but the man holds on tightly to his coat, and no matter how hard the north wind tries, he can’t blow the coat off the man. Exhausted he returns to the sun. The sun begins to shine brighter and brighter until it becomes too warm for the man to wear his coat. When you’re happy and bright towards people, not only will they do what you want them to do, but you might also help change their lives. When my daughter was in elementary school and she would wake up in a grouchy mood, I would always remind her that her bad mood had nothing to do with the rest of the world. Regardless of her anger, her pain or her worries, she had to be polite and kind to others. At one time or another we have all accidently bumped into the bad tempered person who turns to you and lets you have it. These people seldom smile. They always see the negative in life. When something bad happens to others, they’re often glad it happened to someone else for a change instead of feeling sympathetic. The interesting thing about these individuals is that if you analyze their lives, their problems aren’t that much different than the average person’s. They just act as though they are the only ones suffering on this earth. I know people who have suffered tragedies in their lives or who are dealing with a serious illness who could easily use their circumstances as excuses to be angry or rude to others. And yet, these individuals choose to be kind and considerate and make their friends and family feel good when they are around them. I believe in magical connections and blessed encounters. I believe that we are all put on this earth for a reason and that every person we come in contact with, whether it is someone we bump into at the grocery store or a friendship we treasure, plays an important role in our lives. None of us can know what another person is feeling inside. None of us can guess the problems a person may be experiencing. A smile and a few kind words take little effort. The English poet William Wadsworth wrote, “The best portion of a good man’s life is his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and of love.” A smile and a handshake have the power to change the world.

Maria Luisa Salcines is a freelance writer, and certified parent educator with The International Network for Children and Families in Redirecting Children’s Behavior and Redirecting for a Cooperative Classroom. Follow her on Twitter @PowerOfFamily or contact her at her Web site at









Acid Reflux: more than just heartburn Acid reflux is the abnormal backflow of gastric acid into the esophagus causing inflammation and the typical heartburn sensation. This regurgitation of acid (and sometimes bile) causes irritation of the esophagus and if transient may be controlled with diet and over the counter antacids. However if it becomes persistent (GERD – Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease) it may lead to more serious conditions such as ulcers causing persistent burning sensation or pain on swallowing; scarring with narrowing of the esophagus causing difficulty swallowing; and even chronic changes in the lining of the esophagus (Barrett’s Esophagus) that can lead to esophageal cancer. This regurgitation of acid is caused by a malfunctioning mechanical barrier at the junction of the esophagus with the stomach. Anatomical problems such as hiatal hernia, medications affecting the muscle such as bronchodilators used in asthma, conditions that increase abdominal pressure such as pregnancy or obesity will predispose to acid reflux. Although the typical reflux symptom is heartburn others include chest pain that if severe enough may simulate a heart attack; difficulty swallowing; or even respiratory symptoms such as hoarseness, chronic cough, laryngitis, and asthma. Symptoms of acid reflux may be controlled avoiding predisposing factors such as weight gain, smoking, or eating large meals. Medications that affect the muscular barrier should also be avoided as well as ingesting caffeine products, fatty foods, alcohol, and acidic juices. Elevation of the head of the bed helps

to prevent acid reflux at night. Over the counter medications such as antacids can also be used. Patients with a hiatal hernia may benefit from laparoscopic surgery to repair the hernia and reestablish the mechanical barrier to prevent acid reflux. When acid reflux is persistent or chronic an endoscopy (looking inside the esophagus with a flexible lighted camera) is recommended to evaluate the severity of the disease as well as to look for the presence of Barrett’s esophagus, condition caused by chronic heartburn and important to find as it predisposes to esophageal cancer. These patients may need long term treatment with a stronger acid reducer (prescribed) and periodic endoscopies to look for changes before the development of cancer. Barrett’s esophagus can be cauterized if there is evidence of precancerous changes (dysplasia). Endoscopy evaluation is recommended in persistent or chronic acid reflux, or if “alarm symptoms” are presents such as weight loss, difficulty swallowing, passage of black stools (bleeding), and anemia. South Texas Gastroenterology Associates consists of six board certified gastroenterologists trained in endoscopy as well as the evaluation and management of GERD and all other gastrointestinal disorders.

Scan this QR Code to find more about Rafael Amaro, M.D.

Rafael Amaro, M.D.

Board Certified Gastroenterology and Hepatology (956) 682-4800

5423 S. McColl Rd., Edinburg, TX 78539

If you are age 50 or more… 16

Call to schedule your screening colonoscopy, Pam Garcia, FNP-C, coordinator Colon Cancer Screening Program





Adamari Lopez Seven years ago, Latin superstar Adamari López was just returning home to Miami from Mexico when she discovered a lump in her breast. “I had never felt something like that before,” she recalls. But, at only 33, and with not a hint of cancer in her family, Adamari was unconcerned. So was her doctor, who reassured her that the lump would probably disappear after she got her period. But, when it didn’t, the doctor ordered a mammogram and after that a biopsy. By now, Adamari was worried but, she says, “I did my best to banish any negative thoughts from my mind.” Still, because she knew she’d be away working in Argentina when the biopsy report came back, she arranged for her sister in Miami to receive the call and relay it to her other sister who was on the set with her in Argentina. Finally, when that call did come, instead of hearing customary chatter, “ My sister got very quiet,” says Adamari. “I had kept thinking everything would be okay, so I was shocked. Since I was in a public place, I couldn’t let on that I was about to cry, or I’d gotten any news that had affected me at all, so we went to the car. ‘Please tell me now what is going on,’ I said, and my sister told me. I tried to stay calm and not express what I felt, but I allowed myself to cry later that night,” Adamari recalls. That brief crying spell was all that Adamari allowed herself, and then her practical nature took over. After all, this is a Puerto Rican native who became a star at the age of six, and utilizing not only her looks and talent but also her intelligence propelled herself into a career as a model, dancer and TV host in addition to her roles in such top-rated novelas as Camila and Amigas y Rivales. So, as soon as she had digested the news, Adamari says, “I asked my doctor, ‘What do we need to do for me to become healthy again?’” The year that followed was an arduous one for Adamari, who is considered among one of the world’s most beautiful women. A mastectomy and reconstructive surgery followed, as well as radiation and chemotherapy. She lost not only her breast but her hair, eyebrows and eyelashes as well. But, in 2006, she was declared to be cancer-free. That year, she was also named one of People en Español’s “50 Most Beautiful People.” This was gratifying to her in a way that perhaps it would not have been a year before, because by 2006, Adamari was also on her way to assuming a new role, that of a champion for women’s breast health. The night that Adamari cried, she also dried her tears and headed to her computer to research breast cancer. She came upon the website for the Susan G. Komen Foundation for the Cure, because “they had the only information I could find in Spanish.” Later on, she reached out to the organization with her story, and in 2008, she was named the Hispanic spokesperson for the Yoplait Lids for Life campaign, which has, over the past 13 years, raised $30 million for the Komen foundation. Adamari is passionate about breast cancer, the most common form of cancer in Hispanic women. Hispanic women are more likely to die from it than are white women, most probably because they are less likely to get screening mammograms or follow up on abnormal test results. “I have heard that Latina women are sometimes shy about going to the doctor or doing breast self-exams, but we cannot allow this to be. We must do everything we can to protect ourselves and our families from getting this disease,” Adamari says. “You need to tell all of the women in your family to go and check yourself, and if something is wrong, you must follow up and receive treatment. This is the reality; It doesn’t matter if you are white, Hispanic, black or Asian. You need to know your body, and you need to take care of it,” she added. This month, Adamari is traveling across the U.S. on behalf of the Yoplait campaign to spread awareness and talk about the campaign. Yoplait donates ten cents to the Komen foundation every time a pink-lid from the special yogurt container is redeemed, up to $2 million a year. The lids can be either mailed back or, for the first time, redeemed online. “I am so delighted to be part of this awesome campaign,” says Adamari. Adamari also wants women everywhere to know that there is a good life awaiting them, even after breast cancer treatment. Adamari follows a healthy diet, which includes consuming a lot of vegetables, water and yogurt (of course) and getting daily exercise and “lots of smiles, every day.” “I’m doing very well. I go to the doctor every six months, and my check-ups are okay. I’m very happy to be at work, but being involved in traveling on behalf of the breast cancer campaign makes me the happiest, because it allows me to be in touch with the women I meet. I love to know their stories, have my picture taken with them and encourage them, because being healthy is the most important thing there is.”

By Charlotte Libov




Breast Cancer

You’ve Just Been Diagnosed With Breast Cancer: Now What? By America Cantu, RN

As a Texas Oncology nurse, I’m often present when a woman learns she’s been diagnosed with breast cancer. It’s a gutwrenching conversation, because this is some of the worst news that a woman can ever receive. Ultimately though, what weighs most on each patient’s mind is the question “Am I going to be ok?”. Thankfully, the answer to that question is often a resounding, “Yes!” Although breast cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer in women, it is one of the most treatable and survivable when discovered early. According to the American Cancer Society, women diagnosed with breast cancer that has not spread outside the breast have a higher survival rate. Steady declines in breast cancer mortality among women since 1990 have been attributed to a combination of early detection and improvements in treatment. While the fight against breast cancer is unique for each patient, every woman should consider a few key things when she’s diagnosed. Here’s what I recommend women do, and NOT do, when they find out they have breast cancer. DO: TAKE A DEEP BREATH, ORGANIZE YOUR THOUGHTS, AND TAKE IT ONE STEP AT A TIME Oftentimes patients tell me that when they’re diagnosed with breast cancer, their minds begin to race. They immediately think of all of the people who may be affected by this news, what the treatment will be and how this will change their lives. But at the moment of diagnosis, it’s important to take a moment to organize your thoughts and allow the reality of a breast cancer diagnosis to sink in. DON’T: LISTEN TO FRIENDS AND FAMILY TELL HORROR STORIES ABOUT BREAST CANCER While friends and family mean well, they often share their own negative cancer-related experiences. It’s easy to listen and begin to think that their stories apply to your particular situation, but that’s generally not true. Amazing advances have been made in breast cancer treatment over the years – many therapies today


are less invasive, and there are more treatment options available that are very effective. DO: EDUCATE YOURSELF ABOUT BREAST CANCER USING RELIABLE SOURCES Unless there’s a history of breast cancer in a family, most women don’t know many details about the disease and try to gather as much information as possible. However, each case is different, so it’s important to first allow your doctor to understand and explain your exact circumstances. Then, Texas Oncology recommends visiting several reliable websites to learn more, including, and DON’T: JUST SEARCH “BREAST CANCER” ON THE INTERNET The Internet is a vast place where it’s difficult to determine medicalbased sources from misleading information. While it’s tempting to simply type the words “breast cancer” into a search engine, you’re likely to end up reading a lot of sensational information that most likely won’t apply to your experience at all. Reliable online information is posted by established organizations, like the American Cancer Society, which have standards for scientifically verifying and updating information. DO: STAY POSITIVE When patients start to think about undergoing cancer treatment, it can be difficult to remain positive. So, at the time of diagnosis, we encourage our breast cancer patients to identify one thing that helps them relax and re-focus so they can use this tool to stay positive throughout their fight against cancer. Staying close to friends and family can also help, as well as joining a breast cancer support group. DON’T: EVER STOP ASKING QUESTIONS When you’re diagnosed with breast cancer, it’s important to be your own advocate. While you should put your trust into your oncology team and know that they’re providing you with the best care possible, you must also make sure that you’re comfortable with your treatment plan every step of the way!

MCALLEN 1901 South 2nd Street McAllen, Texas 78503 PH: 956.687.5150 FAX: 956.687.9546

WESLACO 1330 East 6th Street, Suite 204 Weslaco, Texas 78596 PH: 956.969.0021 FAX: 956.968.9744

HARLINGEN 2121 Pease Street, Suite 101 Harlingen, Texas 78550 PH: 956.425.8845 FAX: 956.364.6793

BROWNSVILLE 2150 N Expressway 83 Brownsville, TX 78521 PH: 956.548.0810 FAX: 956.548.2239

McALLEN Texas Oncology delivers high-quality cancer care with leading-edge technology and advanced treatment options to help patients achieve “More breakthroughs. More victories.” in their fights against cancer. Texas Oncology, a pioneer in community-based cancer care, is an independent oncology practice with sites of service throughout Texas and southeastern New Mexico. Texas Oncology patients have the opportunity to take part in some of the most promising clinical trials in the nation for a broad range of cancers. In fact, Texas Oncology has played an integral role in gaining Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for 29 of the latest cancer therapies.

Billie J. Marek, M.D., FACP Medical Oncology/Hematology

Dr. Marek is board-certified and specializes in medical oncology and hematology. He currently serves as a director of Texas Oncology and is the medical director for Texas OncologyMcAllen. He has served the Rio Grande Valley for the past 22 years as a medical oncologist and hematologist, has been recognized as a “Super Doctor” in oncology for five years in a row, and was recognized as Doctor of The Year for Rio Grande Regional. Dr. Marek received his medical degree from The University of Texas Medical School at San Antonio. He completed his fellowship at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.

Alvaro Restrepo, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology

“I can be part of your team… and together we can fight the battle.” Dr. Restrepo specializes in, medical oncology and hematology. He completed his fellowship at the University of Miami. He also serves on the Breast Cancer Committee of US Oncology and has completed a fellowship in breast cancer treatment. Through the Life Beyond Cancer Fundation he established the Texas Oncology–McAllen Breast Cancer Ride/Walk fundraiser to raise funds for Rio Grande Valley cancer patients. To date approximately $30,000 has been donated to cancer patients in the Rio Grande Valley.

Suresh Ratnam, M.D., FACP Medical Oncology/Hematology

Dr. Ratnam has been with Texas Oncology-McAllen for 13 years, which he joined after completing his fellowship at the renowned National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health. He has co-authored several research publications and is passionate about cutting-edge oncology care. He currently serves on the Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee of US Oncology and chairman of the Credentials Committee for South Texas Health System.

McAllen 1901 South 2nd Street McAllen, Texas 78503 PH: 956.687.5150 FAX: 956.687.9546

Nurul Wahid, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology Dr. Wahid was fellowship-trained in medical oncology and hematology at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York. He has been recognized as Physician of the Year at Rio Grande State Center in Harlingen where he has served as senior attending physician for the past 13 years.

Joseph Litam, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology

Dr. Litam was fellowship-trained at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. He is well known in the community and was in private practice for 27 years before joining Texas Oncology. He has special interest in treating solid tumors.

Guillermo Lazo, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology Dr. Lazo specializes in medical oncology and hematology. He completed his fellowship at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. He is a recipient of several awards including the American Society of Clinical Oncology Merit Award and is the author of several peer-reviewed medical publications as well as book chapters. He received the highest honors on the professional examination for his medical doctorate degree.

Marcelo Boek, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology

Dr. Boek is board-certified in internal medicine, medical oncology and hematology. Prior to him joining Texas Oncology, he conducted clinical research as part of the North Central Cancer Treatment group.

Nirupama Shekar, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology Dr. Shekar specializes in medical oncology and hematology. She completed her fellowship at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland and trained at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

Benjamin West, M.D. Radiation Oncology

Dr. West is a board-certified radiation oncologist. He was a physicist prior to becoming a physician.

Rogelio Salinas, M.D. Radiation Oncology

Dr. Salinas is a board-certified radiation oncologist. He completed his residency training at Memorial Sloan–Kettering Cancer Center in New York followed by his fellowship at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

Debbie Gillett, R.N., N.P. Nurse Practitioner

“Cancer prevention is a high priority. My aim is to identify individuals who may be at high risk for cancer and work with them to develop a plan to reduce that risk.” Debbie Gillett is a nurse practitioner.

WESLACO Daniel Farray, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology Dr. Farray is board-certified in medical oncology, hematology, and internal medicine. He received his medical degree in 1998 from the Universidad Nacional Pedro Henriquez Urena in the Dominican Republic and completed his residency in internal medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation in Cleveland, Ohio. He completed his fellowship in medical oncology and hematology in 2006 at Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center/Loyola University Chicago. Dr. Farray ranked first in his medical school class. He is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology and American College of Physicians.

Habib Ghaddar, M.D., FACP

Medical Oncology/Hematology

Dr. Ghaddar specializes in medical oncology and hematology. He is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine in hematology and medical oncology. He received his medical degree from the American University of Beirut in Beirut, Lebanon. He completed his internship and residency in internal medicine at the Good Samaritan Hospital/John Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. He completed his fellowship in hematology/oncology at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, TX. He has been in practice with Texas Oncology since 1995.

HARLINGEN Marco A . Araneda, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology Dr. Araneda specializes in medical oncology and is board-certified in internal medicine and medical oncology. He received his medical degree from San Carlos University in Guatemala and completed a medical oncology fellowship at East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, Tennessee, as well as a fellowship in bone marrow transplantation at the University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida. He has special interests in breast cancer, gastrointestinal malignancies, hematologic malignancies, and molecular targeted therapy. He is a clinical instructor at Regional Academic Health Center, a lower Rio Grande Valley extension campus of The University of Texas at San Antonio.

Laura E. Cisneros, M.D.

Medical Oncology/Hematology

Dr. Cisneros specializes in hematology and oncology. She completed her residency in internal medicine as well as her fellowship in hematology and oncology at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, KS. She is board-certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine and is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

Carlos Gonzalez-Angulo, M.D. Radiation Oncology

Dr. Gonzalez specializes in radiation oncology and internal medicine. He is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine as well as the American Board of Radiology, and is a member of the American Society of Therapeutic Radiation Oncology (ASTRO), American College of Radiation Oncology (ACRO). He completed his fellowship in radiation oncology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, in Buffalo, New York, and also completed a second residency in radiation oncology at Jackson Memorial Hospital/Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, in Miami, Florida. Aside from his medical practice, Dr. Gonzalez is a Christian lay minister and a student of ancient Greek.

Harlingen 2121 Pease Street, Suite 101 Harlingen, Texas 78550 PH: 956.425.8845 FAX: 956.364.6793 Weslaco 1330 East 6th Street, Suite 204 Weslaco, Texas 78596 PH: 956.969.0021 FAX: 956.968.9744

Do It For You, Do It For Them

One in every 8 women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime and over 30% of women are diagnosed after breast cancer has spread beyond the localized stage.

SCREENING MAMMOGRAM NOW ONLY Take home a chocolate-covered apple to remind your friends, family and neighbors of this life-saving exam and the savings they’ll enjoy when they schedule a simple mammogram during the month of October! Early detection saves lives. Make your appointment today! Call the Breast Care Center at Mission Regional Medical Center : (956) 323-1700

$89 for exams performed during the month of October. Oer applies for those uninsured (includes images and Radiologist’s fee). Scheduling is limited.



1st Valley Hospital Awarded Joint Replacement “Gold Seal of Approval” South of San Antonio Valley Baptist Medical Center-Harlingen becomes 1st in South Texas certified for knee and hip replacement surgeries by national accrediting agency; the hospital has helped thousands of Valley patients and Winter Texans to walk again without pain. The Joint Commission, which is based in Illinois, granted the first-ever specialty certification in the Valley for knee and hip replacements following a survey in July, which included interviews with some of the thousands of Valley residents who have received knee and hip replacement surgery at Valley Baptist. Valley Baptist -Harlingen is now one of only 11 hospitals in Texas to have the “disease-specific” specialty certification in knee and hip replacements. Joint replacement surgery is performed for patients who have pain, discomfort or loss of function due to arthritis, accidents or other causes. Arthritis can eventually cause a joint to deteriorate or wear out to the point that partial or total replacement is necessary. Replacement surgery is designed to restore the patient’s ability to walk and relieve pain. Dr. Rick Bassett, Orthopedic Surgeon and Medical Director of Valley Baptist-Harlingen’s Orthopedics/Joint Replacement Program, has performed more than 10,000 knee replacement and 2,000 hip replacement surgeries at Valley Baptist. Patients have come to Valley Baptist from across the country and Canada to have their knee or hip replacement surgery with Dr. Bassett. In fact, Dr. Bassett has operated on patients from 48 states, including Alaska and Hawaii. “This certification for our excellence in joint replacement is a testament to the expertise, dedication and care of Dr. Bassett


and our entire joint replacement team at Valley Baptist, including all of our orthopedic surgeons and nursing and rehab staff,” said James Eastham, FACHE, Valley Baptist President and CEO. “Our physicians and employees provide outstanding care to our patients on a daily basis. This national honor is great news for our community and for the entire Valley.” Bill Adams, CEO for Valley Baptist-Harlingen, noted that the Joint Commission survey team gave the Valley Baptist joint replacement team a perfect score – without issuing a single “requirement for improvement.” “The surveyor spent much of her time summarizing the positive patient comments that she heard when she was interviewing patients … they were extremely pleased,” Mr. Adams said. Ann McDonald-Upton, Chief Nursing Officer for Valley BaptistHarlingen, said that the survey results were especially impressive given that this was Valley Baptist’s first attempt at a specialty disease-specific certification in total joint replacement surgery. Previously, Valley Baptist-Harlingen was the first hospital in the Valley to be certified as a “Primary Stroke Center” for care of stroke patients by the Joint Commission. Valley Baptist’s orthopedics department follows national standards to reduce the length of stay and risk of infections for patients hospitalized after orthopedic surgery. For example, under the “Surgical Care Improvement Project” guidelines, patients are given antibiotics at optimum times to reduce the chance of infection. In addition, Valley Baptist’s orthopedic surgery rooms are equipped with Laminar Flow, a positive sterile air flow system that reduces infections.


Bone and Joint

The Bone and Joint Decade Every year, bone and joint conditions or injuries account for millions of people visiting doctors’ offices, hospital outpatient or emergency departments, hospitalizations and medical procedures. Between 1990 and 2020, the number of people over age 50 is expected to double, causing an even greater need for care. The Bone and Joint Decade was designated to increase public awareness of this growing burden, to provide better patient education, to increase research support and to improve diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal conditions and injuries. More than 65 patient and professional healthcare organizations in the United States, the federal government and all 50 states are endorsing The Decade. CHILDREN, TEENS AND ADULTS Everyone needs to be concerned about bones and joints. Think about it: If your bones are strong and your joints are flexible, they move smoothly. And that means you can enjoy life and appreciate it fully. For one in seven Americans, movement is a challenge due to bone or joint problems—a broken bone, bad back, hip fracture, arthritis or sports trauma. Arthritis or chronic joint symptoms affect one in three American adults. Costing the United States $300 billion annually, bone and joint disorders are the number one reason that people visit their physicians. During this decade—the Bone and Joint Decade—healthcare professionals throughout the United States are joining forces to help you learn more about lowering your chances of becoming affected with a bone or joint condition. Physicians and researchers are improving treatments designed to ensure a healthy body and a healthy future for you. Through discovery, scientists are learning more about the basis of diseases, such as arthritis, back pain and other conditions, and are developing methods to prevent or treat them. All of this requires your interest and support. Moving easily and pain-free through your life is the goal of these scientists and healthcare professionals who are dedicated to the wellness of your bones and joints.


MOVE IT. USE IT. START NOW. Drinking milk and eating lots of fruit and vegetables are good for your health. That’s always been good advice. But to really make a better future, you need to keep moving—whether through walking, physical training or sports activities. All of these help add bone mass—an important means to ensure your body will move easily throughout the years ahead. Exercise also helps to reduce stress, which leads to a healthier future. As you age, your body will show wear and tear, but you can help by building strong bones when you are young and maintaining them as an adult. Eating the right foods and exercising will keep your bones strong and your joints flexible. Like a well-oiled machine, your body will respond positively to good foods and proper exercise to reduce your chances of having bone or joint problems in the future. Sometimes, despite your best efforts, your body lets you down. Healthcare professionals can work with you to diagnose and treat you with therapy, medicine or surgery. They can help you learn to reuse muscles or joints and prevent future injury. They can help you use your body more efficiently. You can help yourself in other ways too. Take charge of your health. Be a knowledgeable patient. CONCERNED WITH GOOD MOVES FOR LIFE The ‘For Patients, Conditions and Resources’ section at www. offers a comprehensive guide to organizations with information about your bones and joints. Ask questions about your diagnosis and care. Explore options for additional treatment and therapy. Your goal is to move and use your body comfortably by having healthy bones and joints. Healthcare professionals participating in the Bone and Joint Decade are united in their desire to help you live just as you want to live—moving and doing. Start today. Honor your bones and joints.

United States Bone and Joint Initiative, NFP (USBJI)


healthy valley magazine


Healthy Valley Magazine is a free publication. It’s a community magazine with the purpose of providing information to improve and accomplish a healthier lifestyle.


If you are interested in receiving this magazine at home, please fill out the enclosed questionnaire and mail it along with a check for $25.75 to cover the yearly cost of shipping. **The information you provide is confidential and Healthy Valley does not sell or share any information with 3rd parties. Name_________________________________________________ Last Name_____________________________________________ Email_________________________________________________ Address_______________________________________________ City__________________________________________________ State_________________________________________________ Zip Code______________________________________________ Phone Number_________________________________________

Healthy Valley Magazine | 801 E. Fern Ave, Suite 131 | McAllen, TX 78501 | PH 956.525.0240

healthy kids 34

Back to School Health Tips


Join Kids and Families Around the Globe to Walk and Bicycle to School in October


How to Say Good-Bye to Math Phobia



Back to School Health Tips As children get ready to go back to school, they are mainly concerned with seeing their friends, getting new school supplies and deciding what to wear on the first day. As a parent, you likely have much more important things on your mind. The following brief explanations of some back-to-school health tips will help you start off on the right track. VACCINATIONS AND INFECTIONS Most schools require these, but be sure your children are up-to-date on all their vaccinations. The benefits of vaccination have been shown to far outweigh the risks, and the severe long-term effects of a disease, should your child become infected, can be avoided by following the vaccine schedules recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). One important vaccine that is usually not a mandatory requirement for children to enter school is the yearly influenza vaccination. Protect your family from the flu by ensuring that you are all vaccinated. Many clinics and retail pharmacies offer free or discounted flu shots, so ask your pediatrician or pharmacist. It is also important that children are taught to wash their hands often and properly. One tip is to teach them to recite their ABCs before rinsing off the soap. Proper manners when sneezing or coughing should be taught as well; sneezing or coughing into the inside of the elbow rather than the hands is important, as this will help stop germs from spreading when children touch hard surfaces. It is also important to teach children not to share personal items such as cups, utensils, brushes and hats, as this can lead to the spread of germs and head lice.

Brandi Nichole McGee, PharmD. University of Texas

NUTRITION AND EXERCISE Proper nutrition and exercise are important for keeping a growing child healthy. With all the technology that is available today, it is very easy to sit in front of a TV, computer or cell phone for hours on end. Turn the gadgets off, for at least one hour a day, and get your children outside doing something active. Assuming they get enough activity at school is not okay. Even if they did, another hour of sports with the family will only help them be healthier. It is important that parents set a good example as well, so get out there and play some basketball with them. Growing children need three meals a day, and eating a good breakfast will help keep children alert and focused at school. Instilling healthy eating habits is also important. When parents make healthy choices (like fruits and vegetables) over unhealthy ones (like fried and fatty foods), children will follow these same ideals when they are at school. Growing children require a minimum of eight hours of sleep per night. Checking to ensure that the games and phones are put away is very important to help your children get the sleep they need. CHILDREN WITH ASTHMA It is very important that asthmatic children are taught the difference between their rescue and controller inhalers. Be sure the child knows which inhaler to use when having an acute attack. One child was taught to use his red inhaler when he couldn’t breathe after exercise, but both his rescue and control inhalers had red mouthpieces. When he was having an attack at school he reached for the wrong one. So, if using colors, the inhalers must be different enough that the child knows the difference. Have your child demonstrate his inhaler techniques to your pediatrician or pharmacist so that any incorrect habits can be corrected. This is important, even if your child has been using inhalers for years, to ensure that he doesn’t get lazy or forget proper technique. Help your child avoid triggers like allergens and cigarette smoke. It is very important not to smoke or bring smoky clothing around asthmatics, as this can trigger an attack. Be sure that coaches, teachers and school nurses know that your child has asthma and the basic steps to take in an emergency. CHILDREN WITH ALLERGIES Children with mild allergies should be encouraged to avoid things that trigger their symptoms when possible. Talk to your pharmacist or pediatrician about using non-sedating antihistamines if your child needs these while at school. There are many over-the-counter options, such as Zyrtec and Claritin, wich are much less sedating than older antihistamine medications like Benadryl. If your child has life-threatening anaphylactic allergies to insect stings or certain food products, be sure the school has an Epi-Pen on hand and that someone knows how to use it; quick treatment with this medication can be the difference between life and death. Also, be sure your child is taught what foods he cannot have. For example, if your child is allergic to nuts, make sure he knows that peanut butter is off limits as well as candy bars or ice creams that may contain nuts. It is also important that coaches, teachers and school nurses know that your child has a serious allergy and what to do in an emergency.

PH. 1.888.600.7236


CHILDREN WITH DIABETES Make sure your child understands as much as he can about the disease. It is complicated, and young children may not be able to understand most of it, but it is very important that they understand the basics. Stress the importance of not skipping meals or insulin doses, as this can lead to fluctuations in blood sugar, which can cause serious adverse effects. All children with diabetes should wear a medical alert bracelet so that emergency response personnel will know the child has diabetes and what their next steps should be. These can be purchased online and at most retail pharmacies. Teachers, coaches and school nurses should know that your child has diabetes; they should also be taught the signs of hypoglycemia and what to do if your child’s blood sugar falls too low.


Walk to School

Join Kids and Families Around the Globe to Walk and Bicycle to School in October PHYSICAL ACTIVITY Free, convenient, enjoyable and does not require special equipment or training: Walking is a great way for adults and kids to be active. Lack of physical activity is a major cause of chronic illness and death for our country’s adults. Being overweight can cause health problems like diabetes during childhood, and research shows that physically inactive kids are more likely to grow up to be physically inactive adults—and are, therefore, at high risk for obesity and related illnesses. There are plenty of great reasons to walk to school—less traffic, safer streets, cleaner air—but one of the best is that children and parents will be healthier. With obesity rates skyrocketing and only one quarter of American’s getting the Surgeon General’s recommended daily dose of exercise (just 30 minutes a day), it’s an ideal time to encourage people to walk to school for their own health and well-being.

KIDS NEED TO MOVE Obesity rates among children have more than doubled in the past twenty years, according to the National Longitudinal Study of Youth. Even worse, rates of obesity are much higher among minority children than among white youth, suggesting a grave social inequity in the availability of safe, healthy recreational opportunities. Add walking to the mix. Physical activity recommendations for children suggest that they need a variety of activities each day—some intense, some less-so, some informal, some structured. Walking or cycling to and from school is an ideal way to get some of that activity at no extra cost to the child or family. Walking to school is a missed opportunity. Roughly 10% of children nationwide walk to school regularly. Even among those kids living within a mile of their school, only 25% are regular walkers. Parents who walk or bike to school with their kids get to be sociable. Nearly nine out of ten parents who walk their children to school see it as an ideal way to meet new people, according to a survey in the UK. Many said that the school gate was a better place to meet new people than pubs, clubs, evening classes or the supermarket.

National Center for Safe Routes and School of the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center. Funding provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Javier Ramirez M.D.

Dr. Ayres has served the Rio Grande Valley’s infant community for over five years as a pediatric pulmonologist at his office, Pediatric Lung Center. During his 26 years of practicing medicine, Dr. Roberto Ayres has excelled in his vocation and pediatric care.


Roberto Ayres M.D.


413 Lindberg Ave. | McAllen, TX. 78501 | 956.668.7770

1900 S Jackson Rd, Ste 7 | Mcallen, TX 78503 | 956.688.5864

Dr. Felipe M. Avila and his team have been providing exceptional specialized pediatric care for newborns, children & adolescents since 2001. Our practice offers a full spectrum of services to meet your child’s healthcare needs including extended weekday hours until 9 p.m., Saturday clinic until 12 p.m., in-house laboratory and expanded staff to ensure efficient and prompt service. We work with all insurances and offer convenient and flexible payment plans for private pay. Our mission and pride is to deliver quality care you can depend on, Call us today!

100 North Texas Ave., ste. B | Mercedes, TX 78570 | Ph. 956.565.0900

Felipe M. Avila, M.D.

Dr. Julio E. Arias Viaud is the pediatrician at Valley’s Kids and Teens Clinic, P.A., in San Juan, Texas. He is Board certified and is passionate about healing the whole child, not just the physical aspect. Dr. Arias Viaud believes in patient education and helping parents raise emotionally and physically healthy drug-free kids and teens.

Julio Arias Viaud M.D.

1110 S. Stewart Rd. Suite F | San Juan, TX. 78589 | 956.223.2600

San Juan


Dr. Javier Ramirez-Lavin has been living in the Rio Grande Valley since 1980, and has been primarily specializing in newborn care and pediatrics. Dr. Ramirez-Lavin was the first neonatologist in the Valley and has privileges to admit and care for patients under general pediatrics in most local hospitals where he regularly makes rounds in the newborn nurseries. Dr. Ramirez-Lavin attends to deliveries and C sections. Appointments are not required. We accept private patients, Medicaid, CHIPS(now Superior), Blue cross, and most insurances.

HV Good-Bye to Math Phobia

How to Say Good-Bye to Math Phobia Do the words “math homework” strike fear in your child? Or in you? Mathematics has been considered a challenging subject for many kids and has been feared erroneously. In today’s world with both parents working, often parents just do not have the time or energy to help their children with Math homework. Or, if they do, it’s after a long day at work, after dinner and approaching bedtime. At that point, everyone is getting tired. It is easy for both you and your child to get frustrated and just “check out.” When that happens, a power struggle tends to ensue and then a whole host of other issues arise. The major problem is that the child is not getting better in Math school work, is beginning to associate that evening struggle with Math as a whole and ends up experiencing Math as a burden. Often the struggle at the end of the day becomes unsuccessful, the parent-child relationship becomes tense and the student’s self-esteem goes down as the fear of Math expands. I have experienced many cases in which parents come to me and express that their child is a wonderful student but is just lazy. Sometimes this may be true, but often it is an indication that the child is bored because he is not being challenged. Aside from not performing to his ability, the problem with being bored is that he may not be paying attention in class

or completing homework assignments. Initially, this can lead to a decline in test scores and grades. Then, as Math topics build on themselves and become more complicated, a good student who once was strong in Math may struggle or even discontinue with Math studies altogether. Sometimes, the math that a child is working on is beyond the abilities of the parents. Even parents can feel intimidated by material that they have not seen in years. Sometimes the parents tell me that they hated Math growing up. Unfortunately, this can influence their child’s perception about Math. What if we told you that we can change that fear of Math into better grades and higher self-confidence and eliminate the frustration, tears and fights over Math homework? At Mathnasium we take pride in our approach to Mathematics. We change that fear into better grades and higher selfconfidence and eliminate the frustration, tears and fights over Math homework. We make Math make sense to kids. Better grades are just the beginning. Discover how a better understanding of Math can change your child’s attitude ... and with understanding comes passion! Before you know it, your child could become crazy about Math! By Leon Woloski.

201 South Shary Road, Suite 450, Mission, TX 78572 PH. 956.467.4422

healthy fitness and beauty 42

Eliminate Stomach Fat and Lower Belly Bulge

44 American Heart Association Encouraging Businesses to Take Steps That Will Save Billion$ 46

Breast Reduction with Lipoplasty Assisted by Ultrasound Vaser


ELIMINATE STOMACH FAT Many people carry something extra with them every day: love handles, a spare tire, belly bulge, a stomach pooch. Unwelcomed stomach fat is an unfortunate fact of life for young and old, men and women. Your shape is affected by many events in your life: aging, pregnancy, weight gain and activity levels can all affect your form. As you grow older, you lose muscle tone and accumulate fat across the stomach, making your waist heavier. Even young women, who are otherwise very thin, can have a lower belly bulge that won’t improve with diet and exercise. But it doesn’t have to be that way. With abdominal tumescent liposuction, you can wear that bikini or Speedo, shop at those trendy stores in the mall and have that waistline that you have always dreamed of. At NOBU Medical Spa, we offer free consultation to help you decide what your best option is.

Eliminate Stomach Fat and Lower Belly Bulge

Having a tumescent liposuction surgeon eliminate your belly fat with liposculpture is much easier and safer that undergoing a traditional tummy tuck. The process is simple: • You are given a local anesthetic to numb the area. • Your liposculpture surgeon places two small incisions in the upper and lower abdomen to begin the suctioning process with a small cannula only about 3 to 4 mm wide. • Your surgeon uses slow, gentle movements to remove the fat, meaning limited pain, fewer bruises and a rapid recovery for you. Tumescent liposuction patients need only light sedation, and most patients are back at work in one or two days. Unlike laser procedures that only shrink the fat cells temporary, tumescent liposuction is permanent. Tumescent liposuction produces noticeable results, leaving you with a sculpted, flatter abdomen and a more defined waist. WHY CHOSE ABDOMINAL TUMESCENT LIPOSUCTION? IS IT FOR MEN OR WOMEN? Both men and women benefit from abdominal liposuction. Because moderate amounts of fat can be removed, patients see a more defined waist and smaller abdominal circumference. Men can regain definition, giving them the six-pack abs they have always wanted. Women can recapture the smooth, flat abdomen from their younger years, even after pregnancy. Thin women can finally be free of their stubborn lower belly pooch. And at NOBU Medical Spa, we do this with tumescent liposuction, to make recovery quick and post-op bruising and pain minimal. AM I A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR ABDOMINAL TUMESCENT LIPOSUCTION? Patients who are in general good health with excess fat on the abdomen can benefit from liposculpture. If you would like an evaluation, call NOBU Medical Spa for a free consultation 956.455.8899.






• Well women and annual exams • Management of low & high-risk pregnancy • Management of recurrent miscarriages • Ultrasound, including 4D • Family planning and birth control methods • Diagnosis and management of infertility • Management of abnormal PAP smears • Sexual transmitted diseases screening & treatment • Management of menopause & osteoporosis • Diagnosis & management of hormonal problems • Diagnosis & management of pelvic pain • Management of menstrual problems • In house cystometrogram • Management of urinary incontinence • Minimal invasive & laparoscopic surgery • Diagnosis & treatment of sexual dysfunction • Adolescent Gynecology


American Heart Association

American Heart Association Encouraging Businesses to Take Steps That Will Save Billion$

What has recently cost Texas businesses more than $9.5 billion in the past year—a number that has nearly tripled since 2007? The answer may surprise you: obesity. A recent report from Texas Comptroller Susan Combs, shows that between “health insurance costs, absenteeism, reduced work productivity, and disability,” businesses are paying the price—a high one, as a result of the obesity epidemic. IS THERE A SOLUTION? According to “Gaining Costs, Losing Time,” the Comptroller report that studies obesity and its effects on business’ pockets, wellness programs in the workplace are proving extremely effective. In fact, the American Heart Association estimates that for every $1 invested in worksite wellness, companies can receive up to $3 in return. While businesses are taking the hit from obesity in the bank, their employees suffering from obesity are taking the hit on their hearts. Obesity is a leading risk factor for heart disease, the number one killer for both men and women. The American Heart Association encourages companies of all size sto become Fit Friendly—by instilling wellness incentives, providing healthy snack options in the break room, implementing stricter smoking policies on work property and more. Another way companies are beating the bulge is by taking part in team-building events such as annual American Heart Association Heart Walks throughout the country. The noncompetitive 5K walk/run provides a fun atmosphere with a serious cause—to fight cardiovascular diseases that claim a life every 38 seconds. Companies that get involved not only take part in a life saving event but also take strides in the direction of overall wellness. If all trends continue and no preventative actions are taken, the cost of obesity is expected to triple by 2030. Don’t let obesity get hold of your company’s credit card—take the lead and encourage employees to strap on their walking shoes to take a step in the right direction. For more information, contact the American Heart Association of South Texas at (888) 433-7220 x2432, and take steps towards a more fit and fortuitous future. Harlingen Heart Walk: October 1 8:30a.m. - 2:00p.m. @Marine Military Academy Brownsville Heart Walk: October 22, 8:30a.m. - 2:00p.m. @Brownsville Sports Park www.brownsvilleheartwalk. org Upper Valley Heart Walk: November 12, 8:30am-2:00pm @Bill Schupp Park, McAllen

By Caitlin Martone, American Heart Association



The old world Spanish charm, boutique-style Comfort Suites® Alamo/Riverwalk is ideally located within walking distance of the historic Alamo and San Antonio River Walk Area Attractions AT&T Center - Alamo - Alamodome - Henry B. Gonzales Conv. Ctr. - Market Square- San Antonio River Walk San Antonio Zoo and Aquarium - SeaWorld San Antonio - Six Flags Fiesta Texas - San Antonio Botanical Garden River Center Mall ( Across the Street) ,The Quarry Market, La Canterra Mall & San Marcos Outlet Mall

505 Live Oak Street San Antonio TX, US, 78202

PH. 210.227.5200 FAX. 210.227.5202

Free full hot breakfast buffet Free WI-FI



901 E. Redbud Suite 8A McAllen, TX 78504 PH. 956.994.1837



133 W Nolana Ave, Mcallen, TX 78504 Ph. 956.627.3160


Foundations VALLEY EAR, NOSE & THROAT SPECIALISTS, P.A. 2101 S Cynthia St # A McAllen, TX 78503 PH. 956.687.7896

BROWNSVILLE SURGICAL SPECIALIST 100 B Alton Gloor Blvd., Ste. 260 Brownsville, TX 78526 PH. 956.350.3901



Laser & Cosmetic Dentistry 6900 N. 10th St., Suite #7 McAllen, TX 78504 PH. 956.630.6130

DME LIFE MEDICAL SUPPLY 2509 Buddy Owens McAllen, TX 78504 PH .956.994.3600

1205 N Raul Longoria Rd. Ste. F San Juan, TX 78589-3712 PH. 956.782.6337

Valley Intensivists Pulmonologists & Sleep Specialists PLLC 1200 E Savannah Ave Ste 3 Mcallen, TX 78503 PH.956.688.6300

Services “I can be part of your team ... and together we can fight the battle.”

Martial Arts


Lora Incardona PH. 956.501.7724


Dentist ARTURO LOPEZ, D.D.S., P.A.

Internal Medicine ABIM Certified 1315 E. 6th Ste. 6 Weslaco, TX 78596 PH. 956.351.5949

Texas Organ Sharing Alliance 2217 Primrose Avenue McAllen, TX 78504 PH. 956.630.0884


1901 South 2nd Street McAllen, TX 78503 PH. 956.687.5150

Specialty HECTOR G. AMAYA M.D., P.A.




PH 888.600.7236

____________________ Commercial • Residential

BOROWITZ BLACK BELT ACADEMY David W. Borowitz 2201 W. Nolana McAllen, TX 78504 PH. 956.994.9220

Efrain Gonzalez 29073 Nelson Rd. San Benito, TX 78586 PH. 956.467.6102

Texas Oncology -McAllen 1901 South Second Street McAllen, Texas 78503 PH. 956.687.5150

VALLEY WOMEN’S CLINIC Obstetrics & Gynecology Ramiro Leal, M.D., F.A.C.O.G. 1900 S. Jackson Rd #4 McAllen, TX 78503 PH. 956.971.9930




201 N. McColl Rd. McAllen, TX 78501 PH 956.205.0384




1001 S. 10th St. McAllen, TX 78501 PH. 956.687.7759

Frank Fuentes 301 N. McColl Road, Suite I McAllen TX 78501 PH. 956.451.3526

PH. 956.972.1400 3937 S. McColl Edinburg, TX


of Community Events

ZUMBA BEATS 6:00 PM Cancer Center at Renaissance, 1st floor


DIABETES CLASS IN SPANISH 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM Wellness Center at Renaissance 5525 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610.


BROWNSVILLE HEART WALK 8:30 AM – 2:00 PM At Brownsville Sports Park, Brownsville, TX For more information, call Caitlin Martone at the American Heart Assoc. at 888-433-7220, ext. 2432.


DIABETES SUPPORT GROUP 6:00 PM Wellness Center at Renaissance 5525 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610.


KING OF THE CAUSEWAY TRIATHLON 8:00 AM 500m swim 12mile bike 5k run Louie’s Backyard, SPI Convention center



“DOING HEALTHY RIGHT” WEIGHT LOSS CLASS 12:00 PM and 5:30 PM The Wellness Center at Renaissance 5525 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610.


DIABETES CLASS 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM Wellness Center at Renaissance 5525 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610.


IRUN RGV 5K FUN RUN/1-MILE KIDS’ RUN 7:30 AM To benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation At Inter National Bank Corporate Office 1801 S. 2nd St., McAllen, TX For more information, go to http://www.riograndevalley., or email

DIABETES EDUCATION CLASS 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM Sponsored by South Texas Health System McAllen Medical Center, 3 East Classroom 301 W. Expressway 83, McAllen, TX For more information, call 956-971-5850.


HEALTHY COOKING CLASS 6:00 PM Rehab Center at Renaissance Kitchen 5403 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610.


DIABETES CLASS 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM Wellness Center at Renaissance 5525 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610.

SPANISH: ALZHEIMER’S SUPPORT GROUP 7:00 PM 2101 W. Trenton Rd., Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956.388.1300 or 888.977.1400.



PINK BRAZZAR DECORATION 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM Pretty In Pink Boutique 4853 N. McColl Rd. McAllen For more information, call 956.630.0209

CANCER SUPPORT GROUP 6:00 PM Cancer Center at Renaissance, 1st floor

GESTATIONAL DIABETES IN SPANISH 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM Wellness Center at Renaissance 5525 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610. GESTATIONAL DIABETES 1:00 AM – 4:00 PM Wellness Center at Renaissance 5525 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610.



YOGA & YOU 6:15 PM Cancer Center at Renaissance, 1st floor



5TH ANNUAL GREEN LIVING FESTIVAL 6:00 PM Fun for the entire family! At McAllen Chamber of Commerce


$10 HEART RISK ASSESSMENT 6:00 AM – 11:00 AM By appointment only For more information, call 1-800-879-1033.



DIABETES CLASS IN SPANISH 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM Wellness Center at Renaissance 5525 Doctors Drive, Edinburg, TX For more information, call 956-362-5610.

SENIOR SUNDAY 10:00 AM McAllen Heart Hospital, 1st Floor Conference Room $5 per person, $4 for Senior Advantage members 1900 South “D” Street, McAllen For topics, times and presenters, call 956-388-2032.




Dr. Ayres and his staff at Pediatric Lung Center celebrated “Patient Appreciation Day” with their joyful patients on September 9th, 2011. Surrounded by music, food, face painting and lots of friends, Pediatric Lung Center experienced a beautiful celebration day.


Pretty in Pink Boutique held their first annual Pink Brazaar on Saturday September 10, 2011. Women of all ages participated in this wonderful event which all proceeds went to charity. Pretty in Pinks’ beauty consultants provided make overs with compliments of Jane Iredale make up line. Breast cancer survivors and ladies, who have recently been diagnosed, got fitted for specialized bras and prosthesis. A special appearance was made by “Digital 101.5” radio station which provided great music and helped promote the event throughout the day.


Healthy valley issue 36 2011 RGV  

Adamari López October 2011

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