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Idaho Statesman’s

LivingHealthy Get Your ZZZ’s

sunDAY, January 1, 2012



Sleep better tonight with these simple tips

Be Your


Self-improvement has never been so easy. Learn how to look and feel better, younger and happier all year long, whatever the season.

Go nuts for weight loss Build a better emergency kit Exercise for pain relief Choose the right shoes News and events from the Treasure Valley health community

2 living healthy • sunday, january 1, 2012

Idaho Statesman •

L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2




Photo by Katherine Jones/

See photos from the annual YmCA Christmas run A record 2,800 runners and walkers — many in costume, like those honoring the Nativity above —participated. Page 22.

Treasure Valley health news and events

Read about community news on pages 8-11.

Mark It On the Calendar

12 ways to ensure the best year yet. Page 4.

Shoe Smarts

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Every athlete needs the right shoes to be healthy and safe. Page 12.

Sleep Tight in 2012

Break the bad sleep cycle for better health. Page 20. Find Boise Fit on

And more, including ....

Pain relief on page 14, nuts on page 16 & emergency kits on page 18.

Read past issues of Living Healthy at


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4 living healthy • sunday, january 1, 2012

Idaho Statesman •

L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2

Mark it on the

Calendar 12 ways to ensure your healthiest year yet — financially, emotionally and physically

By Lindsey Romain CTW FEATURES


t’s all about the little things. A new year doesn’t have to mean remaking every aspect of life. Sometimes, tapering the smaller things can lead to a stronger big picture. Zeroing in on individual facets of healthy living is the sure way to make 2012 a great year. Here are 12 easy ways to boost a healthier lifestyle and provide focus for a fresh new year.

1. Develop a financial plan.

In the midst of a national financial crisis, money woes are no doubt topping the stress list for many people. Going into 2012 with a disorganized budget isn’t exactly the best start, for finances or mental health. Ric Edelman, a top-ranked adviser and author of the best-selling book “The Truth About Money” (Harper Paperbacks, 2010), suggests choosing a financial plan for the year and sticking to it. “The single greatest cause of financial failure is procrastination,” Edelman says. Saving enough money to cover at least six months’ worth of living expenses should be the first step, he says. Not sure how to get started? Hire a financial advisor. Edelman suggests looking for a reputable, independent and fee-based professional if help is needed.

2. Pay yourself

A good trick for sticking to a budget is writing a check — to yourself. “Instead of writing checks each month to pay all of your bills until there’s nothing left to save, write the first check to yourself before you’re out of money,” Edelman says.

3. Don’t let the past get you down

The perfect motto for a new year, new you: Let go and move on. “Visit the past so you can see how • Idaho Statesman

sunDAY, january 1, 2012 • living healthy 5

;XeX]V fXcWZ]TT ^aWX_ _PX]. The latest technology for partial knee reconstruction and hip replacement is now in Boise. If you are living with knee or hip pain, you may want to consider MAKOplastyÂŽ. Saint Alphonsus is the only hospital in the region offering this advanced technology which allows orthopedic surgeons to attain unparalleled precision and accuracy with hip or partial knee replacement. There are numerous potential benefits. For you, that can mean relief from pain and getting back to doing the things you enjoy!

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6 living healthy • sunday, january 1, 2012

Idaho Statesman •

L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2 it may be coloring your current relationships with dark hues, but make sure to live in the present,” says Dr. Frances Cohen Praver, a clinical psychologist and author of “How Understanding Your Brain’s Wiring Can Help Rekindle Your Relationship” (Sourcebooks, 2011). “If you stay in the past, you will become depressed,” she says. On the reverse, Cohen Praver also says to avoid thinking too far ahead, for fear of growing anxious or negative. “The key is to live in the present,” she says.

4. Clean up your relationships

“If love has faded from your relationship, now is the time to work hard to bring love and lust back,” Cohen Praver says. The new year is a good excuse to try new things with your partner in the name of new adventures. “Remember that you and your partner are connected with mirror neurons, so that if you change yourself, your partner can’t help but change himself or herself, too,” Cohen Praver says.

5. Maintain a well-balanced diet

Eating healthy is an obvious way to stay on track health-wise, but knowing what foods are best to incorporate into an overall eating scheme is key. Lisa DeFazio, a registered dietitian and diet expert for Perez Hilton’s celebrity health and fitness website fitperez. com, says to go for variety. She suggests incorporating whole grains for fiber, such as oatmeal, oat bran and flax seeds. Proteins like nuts, fish, chicken and lean beef also are important as are healthy fats from olive oil, avocados and nuts.

6. Sneak in your nutrients

Angela Pifer, a Seattle-based nutritionist, suggests stocking up on frozen vegetables like organic spinach and kale, both for their affordability and their ability to add a nutritious punch to traditional meals like scrambled eggs, soup, stew, stir-fry and casseroles. Busy people will be more likely to incorporate veggies if they are already chopped and ready to cook.

7. Eat your vitamins

Recent studies have begun to question the efficacy of daily vitamins. Instead,

fill in your nutritional blanks by planning and buying snacks that are made with fruits, nuts, seeds and vegetable and plant extracts. People should make it their goal to eat more fruit, period, dietitians say. “It’s one of the most important things we can do,” says Alice Bender, a registered dietitian and nutrition communications manager for the American Institute for Cancer Research in Washington, D.C. Fruits are high in dietary fiber and water content, so you fill up without too many calories, Bender says. In addition, fruits contain vitamins, such as A and C, the mineral potassium as well as plant chemicals that may reduce a person’s risk of chronic disease. People who consume more fruits may have a lower incidence of larynx, esophagus, stomach or lung cancer, according to Bender.

8. Replace junk with nutrition

Giving up salty and sweet snacks can be hard. Luckily, it’s easy to find healthy replacements for junk-food favorites. For those with a taste for salt, DeFazio suggests options like Popchips, low-fat microwave popcorn, pretzels and Chex mix. For the sweettoothed folks, go for dried fruit, frozen juice bars, low-fat granola bars, graham crackers and low-fat pudding cups.

9. Try a new diet

5There’s apps for better living an app for that! No, really, there is. Smartphone apps have infiltrated many spectrums, including health, finance and general better living. Here are five free apps for iPhone and Android that will help promote and maintain better living in 2012.

Food: whole foods market recipes This app, an extension of Whole Foods stores, recommends recipes that target specific diets and allergies and other recipes for healthy living. The app also searches for healthy recipes based on what’s already in your fridge — no shopping necessary.

fitness: map my fitness Want an app that serves as a GPS, stat tracker and social-media tool, all in one? Map My Fitness does it all. Great for runs and bike rides, it also lets you compare stats with other users. The app is available on BlackBerry devices, too.

mind: t2 mood tracker Fancier than a mood ring, this app lets users track the six different facets of their moods on which they wish to focus: anxiety, stress, depression, brain injury, post-traumatic stress and general well-being. Rank moods on a scale by swiping a small ball from left to right to keep tabs on your emotional welfare.

Finance: perconal finance A budget tool at your fingertips makes it easy to stay money-conscious.’s Personal Finance app automatically syncs online banking accounts and allows users to establish and maintain personal budgets and even check credit-card statements.

General health: webmd mobile A quick symptom checker and referral tool, WebMD Mobile is the app version of the popular website. Check general-health symptoms for an easy diagnosis — it may save an expensive trip to the doctor.

If you’re up for the task, several websites promote start-of-the-year diet challenges. Pifer runs a 28-Day Vegan Challenge, a vegan diet plan with a focus on detox, that begins Jan. 11. According to Pifer, more than 1,300 participated through her website,, in the past year. If going vegan is too extreme, try other diet challenges, like Meatless Mondays, a movement in association with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health that aims to reduce an individual’s meat consumption by 15 percent by forgoing meat products every Monday.

new DVD “The A.R.T. Method By Terri Walsh” (A.R.T. Studio, 2011).“Once it becomes habit, and you don’t think about doing it, add the next small thing.” Walsh suggests activities like running, dancing and boot camp classes.

10. Get moving

11. Get moving, gym or no gym

Every movement counts. It’s best to choose something that can be done consistently. “The key is to pick one small thing to do every week,” says Terri Walsh, a celebrity fitness trainer and star of the

There are many other apps out there to help you live a healthier lifestyle. Ask friends for recommendations, search online tech blogs or use app recommenders for other possibilities. © CTW Features

Gym prices and crowded environments might keep some from accomplishing their annual fitness goals, but Walsh says there’s no need. She suggests finding an at-home program that caters to your interests, such

as yoga, Pilates or dance. “Sometimes starting at home on your own gives you time to digest what you learn and then get out into the world and try,” Walsh says.

12. Live big or go home

Life is here, and life is good. As you go into the new year, don’t forget the most important things life has to offer. “Live moment to moment with meaning, satisfaction, purpose and love,” Cohen Praver says. © CTW Features

sunDAY, january 1, 2012 • living healthy 7 • Idaho Statesman

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8 living healthy • sunday, january 1, 2012

Idaho Statesman •

L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2

News and events from the Treasure Valley health community Saint Alphonsus Health System New knee-replacement option available in Boise Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center is the first hospital in the region to offer patients the MAKOplasty Partial Knee Resurfacing Robotic System. The technology offers patients with early to midstage osteoarthritis of the knee a less invasive treatment option than total knee replacement. It enables surgeons to precisely target only the diseased portion of the knee, without compromising the healthy bone and tissue surrounding it. MAKOplasty Partial Knee Resurfacing is an innovative treatment option for adults living with early to midstage osteoarthritis (OA) in either the medial (inner), patellofemoral (top) or lateral (outer) compartments of the knee. During the procedure, the diseased portion of the knee is resurfaced, sparing the patient’s healthy bone and surrounding tissue. An implant is then secured in the joint to allow the knee to move smoothly again. Sheila Turner, 70, from Sweet, Idaho, is a retired archeologist who enjoys staying active, but she was struggling

with constant pain after injuring her knee years ago. Her coping strategies as her pain persisted included using grocery carts as a crutch when she shopped and making sure that when she bent over she got as many things done in that position as possible because getting back up caused incredible pain. But one day Turner couldn’t get out of bed — and she knew something had to be done. Turner had the partial-knee replacement surgery in early November. Within days, she was moving around comfortably. Before the surgery, she says her pain level, one a scale of one to 10, was an eight. Now, she says, it’s a one. “The pain was always there, especially at night. To not have it is like being out of prison. I can’t say enough good things about it. I would do it again in a flash.” To read more about the partial knee-replacement surgery, visit Saint Al’s clinic joins Reach Out and Read program Getting books from the doctor is becoming a routine part of regular pediatric checkups at the Saint Alphonsus C.A.R.E. maternal/child health clinic as

doctors and nurses welcome the Reach Out and Read program to the practice. The Saint Al’s clinic joins more than 4,779 programs nationwide in preparing America’s youngest children to succeed in school. Reach Out and Read is incorporated into regular checkups by advising parents about the importance of reading aloud and giving developmentally appropriate books to children. The program begins at the 6-month checkup and continues through age 5, with a special emphasis on children growing up in lowincome communities. “In the Saint Alphonsus C.A.R.E. Clinic, we have refugee women and families from several different countries and continents throughout the world,” said Judith Hobbs, RN, FACCE, the manager of the Saint Alphonsus Family Center. ”Many of these women do not read or write in their native language, nor have they ever been to school in their native country. So in our Reach Out and Read Program, most of our refugee women are learning to read along with their babies, and all are learning valuable English skills.” To donate funds or volunteer as a reader, please contact Hobbs at 367-7386 or Learn more about Saint Alphonsus and its programs at

St. Luke’s Health System St. Luke’s CEO launches new blog Dr. David Pate, St. Luke’s Health System president and CEO, has a new blog called Dr. Pate’s Prescription for Change. The new blog will be an opportunity for Pate to reach out to physicians, employees and the community to keep everyone informed on St. Luke’s plans to transform health care. Pate, pictured at right, will talk about St. Luke’s plans as well as comment on issues and policies affecting health care. To sign up for Pate’s blog, visit You can also follow Pate on Twitter at St. Luke’s hosts bariatric patient support sessions St. Luke’s is sponsoring a series of bariatric patient support sessions with bariatric psychologist Mike Dennis. Topics discussed include: process of change and commitment; behavior modification (“Dealing with Head Hunger”); relationships; and stress management. Sessions will be held Jan. 4, Jan. 11, Feb. 1, Feb. 8, March 7 and March 14. To find out more information about the time and location and to register, call 381-9000.

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sunDAY, january 1, 2012 • living healthy 9 • Idaho Statesman

L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2 St. Luke’s named in top 50 nationally for cardiovascular care For the second consecutive year, St. Luke’s Boise and Meridian medical centers were named in the top 50 for cardiovascular care by Thomson Reuters. To compile the list of winners, Thomson Reuters analyzed outcomes of patients who experienced heart failure and heart attacks and those who received coronary bypass surgery and percutaneous coronary interventions such as angioplasties at more than 1,000 hospitals. St. Luke’s hosts free Heart Smart seminars In February, St. Luke’s Heart is holding free Heart Smart seminars on Feb. 15 at St. Luke’s Meridian Medical Center and on Feb. 16 at St. Luke’s Boise Medical Center. The Feb. 15 seminar will cover heart disease risk factors and medications. The Feb. 16 seminar will discuss the latest in atrial fibrillation treatments. Both seminars start at 5:30 p.m. Space is limited and pre-registration is required. To find out more about the seminars or to register, call St. Luke’s at 381-9000 or visit heart. Learn more about St. Luke’s and its programs at

Providers can learn how to help with dizziness Elks Rehab Hospital and Elks Hearing and Balance Center are presenting “Vestibular 101-Vestibular Disorders and Impact on Function” from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. Jan. 21 at the Elks Rehab Hospital. This course is recommended for physical and occupational therapists and health care providers who encounter patients with dizziness. For more information, visit www.elkshearingand and click on “Calendar of Events” or email Learn more about the Elks and its programs at

Elks Rehab Hospital and Services

West Valley Medical Center, Caldwell

Help out by buying a Calendar for Care St. Luke’s-Elks Children’s Rehab, the pediatric division of a joint venture between St. Luke’s and Elks Rehab Hospital, serves thousands of children on an annual basis. The 2012 Calendar for Care, shown above, is dedicated to raising funds to continue providing services to those in need. The calendar features vintage-style portraits of children of all abilities, and almost all are St. Luke’s-Elks Children’s Rehab patients. Calendars are $10 through CalendarPurchase.aspx.

Heart Smart seminar offers free screenings It’s a new year, with more opportunities to recharge one’s health — starting with the heart. Learn about specific risk factors and how to live a heart-smart life at a Heart Smart seminar Feb. 23 at West Valley Medical Center in Caldwell. February is American Heart Month. The Collaborative Cardiovascular Care relationship between WVMC and St. Luke’s Heart presents this event led by St. Luke’s Heart specialists. Starting at 5:30 p.m., guests can receive free cardiac risk screenings and nurse consultations. Beginning at 6 p.m., three cardiologists from

St. Luke’s Clinic, Idaho Cardiology Associates, will present information on: • “Blood Pressure & Body Mass Index Matters” with Murali N. Bathina, MD, FACC • “Making Sense of Cholesterol Numbers” with James C. Field, MD, FACC • “Know Your risk for Peripheral Vascular Disease” with Frederick M. Costello, MD, FACC The event will be in WVMC’s Kaley Center, located on the corner of 10th and Logan in Caldwell. RSVP for the Heart Smart screening and seminar at 208-455-3995. Space is limited; preregistration is required. The new Collaborative Cardiovascular Care relationship with WVMC enhances access to St. Luke’s heart and vascular care in the Caldwell community. St. Luke’s Heart cardiologists are now on call 24/7 at the West Valley Emergency Department. Also, there are plans for a future certified Chest Pain Center at WVMC. Did you know: Every minute, another American dies from a sudden coronary event. Regular screenings and preventative care are the best protection against this silent killer. Learn more about West Valley Medical Center and its programs at


10 living healthy • sunday, january 1, 2012

Idaho Statesman •

L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2 Boise VA Medical Center Funding will aid orthopedic care The Boise VA Medical Center and the Mountain Home Air Force Base were awarded $4.3 million in joint incentive funding to meet the orthopedic needs of veterans, airmen and National Guard soldiers in the Treasure Valley. Orthopedic care is traditionally a highly sought specialty at the Boise VA Medical Center (VAMC). At any given time, there are roughly 200 veterans on a monthly waiting list. In fiscal year 2010, the Boise VAMC spent $2.1 million on buying this care in the private community for veterans. Mountain Home Air Force Base also has a significant need for orthopedic care. In fiscal year 2010, the Mountain Home AFB referred over 640 patients to TriCare providers for orthopedic care and spent about $600,000 in orthopedic purchased care. The Department of Defense-VA Health Care Sharing Incentive Fund allows VA and Defense facilities the opportunity to coordinate on mutually beneficial endeavors. Since fiscal year 2004, more than 80 initiatives have been awarded JIF funding. Last year, for instance, the Boise VAMC and Mountain Home AFB were awarded $2.2 million in JIF funding to conduct sleep studies and build a new sleep study clinic for airmen and veterans. The additional orthopedic resources are expected to

improve accessibility and quality for airmen and veterans in a cost-effective manner. Learn more about the Boise VA Medical Center and its programs at

St. Luke’s Humphreys Diabetes Center Ready to lose weight? You could win cash! The 4th annual $10,000 Treasure Valley Weight Loss Challenge kicks off Jan. 7 and will award a total of $10,000 to the top three men and top three women who lose the biggest percentage of weight — $3,000 to the top man and woman, $1,500 to the second-place man and woman, and $500 to the third-place man and woman. The event is being presented by Boise’s Ladd Family Pharmacy to benefit St. Luke’s Humphreys Diabetes Center. Sign up, weigh in and pay a $50 registration fee at the kick-off party from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 7 at the Humphreys Diabetes Center, 1226 River St. in Boise. Sponsors will be on hand giving away samples, coupons and special incentives to all Challenge participants, and past Challenge winners will share their success stories. Folks who can’t make the kick-off party can sign up between Jan. 8 to 22 at Ladd Family Pharmacy in Boise or at the Humphreys Diabetes Center in Meridian.  Teams of five or more people receive $5 off the registration fee.

Each week, challenge participants receive nutrition and exercise tips via email, and the Challenge offers monthly physical challenges and motivation meetings.  The final weigh-in and cash awards presentation will be held on June 7. For full details, rules and entry forms, visit or call 331-1155, Ext. 32.

Central District Health Department Breastfeeding support available The WIC program at Central District Health offers a variety of support for new and expecting mothers. Every prenatal appointment includes breastfeeding education. The breastfeeding peer counselors provide education and support for first-time pregnant WIC clients for the first three months after delivery. The WIC staff includes IBCLC (international board certified lactation consultants) or CLC (certified lactation counselors) who can provide specialized breastfeeding help for WIC clients. WIC also offers weekly breastfeeding support group meetings for WIC clients every Monday (except holidays) from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the WIC office, 707 N. Armstrong Place, Boise. Call 327-7488 for more information.

Central District Health is offering two free Tobacco Cessation classes, one at the Boise Public Library in Downtown Boise and the other at the Library at Collister. Each series of classes is 10 hours over five sessions. Students gain the tools and support needed to quit for good. The classes are free, but registration is required. Call 375-5211. Other classes are listed on the CDHD website at Get a cholesterol screening Offered the first Tuesday of every month at CDHD, 707 N. Armstrong Place, Boise, from 6:30 to 9 a.m. No appointment is necessary. Blood draw, blood pressure check and health and nutrition information. The next screenings are Jan. 3 and Feb. 7. Cost: $20. Call 375-5211 for information. Learn about food safety in child-care settings Keeping kids safe from food-borne illness is the focus of a class designed for child-care providers that’s also open to the public: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 7, at CDHD, 707 N. Armstrong Place, Boise. Cost: $15. Registration is required. Call 327-7499.

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L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2 dren and adults will take place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, Feb. 13, on the fourth floor of the Idaho State Capitol rotunda. The screenings are conducted by the Idaho State University-Meridian chapter of the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association. Children under age 18 must be accompanied by an adult to be screened. No appointment is necessary, and a screening takes about 10 minutes. Call 540-557-7753 for more information. Many services available at ISU–Meridian ISU-Meridian at 1311 E. Central Drive ( clinics.shtml) offers dental, mental health and speech-language services at clinics located on campus and staffed by faculty, student clinicians and licensed professionals. • The Delta Dental of Idaho Dental Residency Clinic at Idaho State University offers a full slate of services, including oral surgery, implants, root canals, crowns, bridges, dentures, hospital dentistry, pediatric dentistry and preventive care. Most insurance plans accepted. The clinic also offers discounts based on family income. Call 3731855 for information. • The Counseling Clinic offers individual, couples and family counseling. Sessions are free for ISU faculty, staff, students and their families. For non- ISU clients, fees are $15 for individual sessions and $20 for couples and families per session. Call 373-1719.

• The Speech and Language Clinic offers therapy for children and adults who are experiencing communication problems and disorders. Group services include early intervention for children with cochlear implants and hearing aids and treatment of adults following a stroke or traumatic brain injury. Individual speech and language therapy sessions are $50 per session. Call 373-1725.

University of Idaho Explore how to care for our aging population Join the University of Idaho for the 10th annual Idaho WWAMI Mini Medical School. WWAMI is the five-state regional medical education program of the University of Washington School of Medicine that includes Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho and serves as Idaho’s medical school. The Idaho WWAMI Medical Education Program is offering a series of evening lectures during February for the general public focused on the theme “GeriatricsCaring for our Aging Population.” Idaho’s 60-plus population has increased 43 percent between 2000 and 2010, according to the Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Aging. Currently, 10,000 people turn 65 each day in the United States. Program topics include: dementia, osteoporosis, “Phar-

Start the New Year off right with a Holistic Approach to your Life Specializing in Holistic Options • Women’s Health • Lifestyle Counseling • Nutritional Counseling

macologic Considerations in the Elderly: Common Concerns with the use of Medications,” “Living Long? Living Well!”, key concepts in palliative medicine , management of urinary incontinence in the older person, depressionover the years and injury prevention. When: 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesdays: Feb. 1, 8, 15 and 22 Where: St. Luke’s Regional Medical Center in Boise, Anderson Center, Ada 2 and 3 Cost/registration: $25 . The registration deadline is Jan. 24. For a registration form and more information, visit:

American Red Cross of Greater Idaho Get 2012 off to a great start by donating blood As the joys of the holidays come to a close, the American Red Cross of Greater Idaho encourages you to give one more gift — the gift of life, by donating blood. The Red Cross needs to collect 240 units of blood every day in Idaho alone to meet demand. And while the need for blood remains constant in the Treasure Valley, blood donations typically decline during and just after the holidays. One donation takes about an hour and can help save more than one life. Call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit to make an appointment to donate.

Find out how to fuel your body Learn about “Taking the Fight out of Food” from 9:10 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. Thursdays (Jan. 12 through Feb. 16) at Eagle Montessori. Emily Barker, a certified holistic health counselor, will teach you how to make healthier habits happen in your family. For details or to register, visit Cost: $125. Also, learn about “Sugar Fix Solutions” from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Jan. 21. Discover how to satisfy your sugar fix without deprivation. Healthy sweet treat samples, recipes and giveaways are part of the class. Cost: $15. For more details or to register, visit For questions about either class, email The information for Treasure Valley health community news was submitted by area hospitals and health-care organizations. If you’d like your organization’s news considered for publication in the March 3 issue, email Holly Anderson at handerson@idahostatesman. com before Feb. 15. Space is limited.

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12 living healthy • sunday, january 1, 2012

Idaho Statesman •

L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2

Every Athlete needs the right shoes for a healthy (and safe) FITNESS routine

By darci swisher CTW FEATURES


xperts say that a sport-specific shoe should be worn when doing one sport more than two or three times a week. Training shoes — the go-to shoe for most gym rats — simply don’t provide the stability and support an athlete of any level needs to stay the course. Of course, for the most athletically oriented, this translates to a lot of shoes and a lot of decisions. The American Council on Exercise recommends seeking a specialty athletic-shoe store with staff members who are knowledgeable about selecting the most appropriate shoes.


Running shoes are specially designed for straightforward motion and to be picked up and put back down again around 1,500 times a mile, says Kris Hartner, owner of the Naperville, Ill.based Naperville Running Company, which was voted the 2009 Running Specialty Store of the Year. But choosing a running shoe isn’t all that straightforward. Running shoes fall into two categories, stability and neutral, and only an expert at a running specialty store can truly determine which category a foot fits in and to what degree, Hartner says. That’s where fit specialists come in. Their job is to see how a foot interacts in a shoe through a gait analysis, which is accomplished by watching a

runner run, either on a treadmill or the floor. Once the category is determined, a variety of appropriate shoes in different brands pulled, and the ones that don’t fit properly eliminated, it’s up to the customer to pick the shoe that feels best, Hartner notes. “They pick the shoe in the end,” he says. “If you’re getting shoes and someone’s not asking you for feedback, then I’d be worried about that person fitting you, if they’re doing a good job.” Hartner and his employees then have clients run on the store treadmill — a step they record on video — to catch the interplay between a foot and a shoe. “You see how a shoe fits when they’re running, how it’s

working for them with their body,” he says. Hartner recommends shopping at stores with at least seven brands on their shoe wall, so there’s more to choose from in each category. He also advises runners to consistently alternate two pairs of shoes, of different brands — perhaps one being a lighter shoe for shorter runs. “It’s good for feet to not be running in the same shoes every day,” he says, as well as good for the life of the shoe.


Since movements during a match of tennis are primarily lateral and include repeated abrupt stops, a tennis shoe’s forefoot typically has a wider base as well as a stability system to reduce the

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Footloose and Fancy — Shoe Free

“If a player feels any increase in knee or ankle pain during or after playing, the cushioning in their shoe is most likely worn out, and they should get a new pair of shoes.” — Adam Queen, vice president of Your Service Tennis, Atlanta

tendency for the ankle to roll over, according to Adam Queen, vice president of Your Service Tennis, a tennis specialty retailer with seven stores in metropolitan Atlanta. In addition, tennis shoes are often designed to keep players on their toes, which is accomplished through a higher heel and lower toe. “This reduces the time it takes to get moving from a stopped position, and therefore increases the number of balls the player can reach and return during a rally,” Queen adds. He points out that tennis shoes are generally constructed of more leather than mesh because they need a more structured upper for both support and durability. They also have a tough sole: A tennis court’s harsh, gritty surface wears down the rubber on all shoes quickly, so the outsole of a tennis shoe is made from a high-density rubber — and a lot of it. Like with running shoes, a proper fitting session is necessary. “Proper fit means about a thumbnail of space between the front of the shoe and the end of the longest toe,” Queen says. “Width is also very important as the foot should not feel constricted in the shoe through the midfoot or toe, but also should not have too much room as that will cause the foot to slide around causing blisters.” Queen advises players to replace tennis shoes when the outsole becomes smooth and can no longer grab the court surface, or when the midsole cushioning system has worn down.

“If a player feels any increase in knee or ankle pain during or after playing, the cushioning in their shoe is most likely worn out, and they should get a new pair of shoes,” Queen says.


While golf isn’t as intensive of a sport as running and tennis, it does require specific footwear. A golfer typically walks around 5 miles — up and down hills, on wet grass — during an 18-hole round, which takes more than four hours and requires a lot of golf swings. Therefore, a golf shoe must provide significant traction, according to ECCO Shoes, a manufacturer of athletic and lifestyle shoes. ECCO Shoes considers a stable base to be essential to making a proper golf swing. This is achieved with a shoe’s cleats or spikes. They provide traction to keep a golfer grounded and develop the torque in a swing to drive the ball. Golf shoes should fit snug in the heel and instep but be roomy in the toe box, ECCO recommends. This will help mirror barefoot walking, allowing the toes to spread when the foot hits the ground. Golf shoes should also have ample arch support. Most importantly, golf shoes — as well as any shoe for athletic endeavors — should feel great from the time they’re taken out of the box. Breaking-in blisters? Not necessary or good for any game. © CTW Features

The barefoot running craze has led to a plethora of shoes that protect the foot while providing minimal support. At the same time, they’ve become a maximum part of the running industry, to the tune of $1.7 billion by some estimates. The Vibram FiveFingers Bikila ($90 retail price) is easily distinguishable by those toes. The heel and forefoot is even, encouraging runners to develop a “forefoot running form,” with less of a heel strike, that simulates barefoot running. The Nike Free Run ($90 retail price) features a contoured footbed and an outsole with “flex grooves,” which allow the shoe to contour to the foot’s natural flex. The Brooks PureProject collection features the PureConnect running shoe ($90 retail price), designed to engage a runner’s natural balance and shift contact points forward. The New Balance Miniumus Road ($99.99 retail price) has a wide toe box that gives the foot room to expand on impact and a minimal drop between the heel and toe heights to encourage a natural foot position.

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Take 2 Exercises and Call Me In the Morning By Bev Bennett CTW FEATURES


rthritis, chronic backaches and similar conditions don’t encourage exercise. When it’s painful to move, a comfortable bed or plush sofa seems very inviting. However, contrary to a person’s inclination, physical activity may be just what is needed. Being active works on the entire body — from the brain to the joints — to alleviate pain. People may wonder what the connection is between exercise and pain

relief. Is it the hormones the body releases? The muscle that’s building? Improved blood flow? Simply the distraction from pain? It’s all the above, according to John Pagliano, a sports podiatrist based in Long Beach, Calif., and a fellow at the American College of Sports Medicine. When you exercise, your body releases endorphins, which block the transmission of pain impulses to the brain, according to Dr. A. Lynn Millar, professor of physical therapy at Winston-Salem State University, N.C. The effect is similar to that of mor-

phine — with important differences. “It doesn’t lead to addiction, but it feels good, and it’s free,” says Pagliano. Exercise also increases blood flow to the joints. The improved circulation may help healing in areas that are subject to pain. Exercise increases blood flow to the muscles and carries away waste products, such as lactic acid, adds Dr. Pagliano. That increased blood flow helps people feel better, he says. Physical activity also may reduce other symptoms of chronic disease that can have an impact on a person’s

pain level. “People who exercise have decreased inflammatory markers [substances in the body that suggest health risks],” Millar says. And although you’re probably not trying out for the NFL anytime soon, you’ll want to exercise to maintain or build muscle. If muscles atrophy, the pain may increase, Millar says. © CTW Features

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Before You Start You may be concerned that you’ll exacerbate pain if you make the wrong moves. If you have pain with injuries or if you have signs and symptoms of a chronic disease, see a physician before starting any exercise program, say sports medicine professionals. You also may seek an expert’s advice for exercise for specific conditions. “If you have arthritis or heart disease, it may make you feel more comfortable knowing that someone who understands your limitations is offering exercise suggestions,” says Dr. A. Lynn Millar, professor of physical therapy at Winston-Salem State University, N.C.


exercises for pain relief For those who have been sedentary to avoid hurting, start exercising gradually, say experts. An initial routine doesn’t have to be rigorous to be beneficial, Classes in stretching or yoga, for example, may reduce symptoms and improve function in people with chronic low back pain, according to a recent study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Walking is another easy-on-the-body physical activity. “I get patients walking 10 minutes, 3 times a week with a day off inbetween. They increase that by 10 percent a week. It’s a gradual increase and very doable,” says Dr. John Pagliano, a Long Beach, Calif.based podiatrist who also is a long-distance runner. Once comfortable walking, add resistance exercise to build muscle. Also include routines that keep the body flexible. “Stiffness is a hallmark of arthritis. Do exercises that take you through a range of motions to keep joints from stiffening,” says Dr. A. Lynn Millar, professor of physical therapy at Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina. Whichever exercises you choose, make them a daily habit. “There’s always a way to get exercise. If you can’t run or walk, do water exercise,” Pagliano says, cautioning: “Doing this once a week isn’t enough.”

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AWeight-Loss Nutty Idea Eating high-fat nuts could improve the functions of your body



eing a health nut is a lifestyle people will want to embrace — literally. Study after study — for reducing heart disease risk, improving the body’s reaction to stress and better glycemic control in type 2 diabetes — concludes with the benefits of nuts. Why nuts? “There’s a package of nutrients that makes a difference,” says Dr. Sheila G. West, associate professor of biobehavioral health and nutritional sciences at Penn State University in University Park, Pa. Different nuts have different nutritional qualities. For example, walnuts are the only nuts with significant omega-3 fatty acids, and the pistachio’s distinctive green means the nut contains antioxidants. Nuts also provide much-needed dietary fiber, according to West. In addition to providing nutrients, nuts can replace salty processed meats or red meat high in saturated fat, and that may also be important, according to Lilian Cheung, a registered dietitian and editorial director of The Nutrition Source ( at the Harvard School of Public Health. But before you grab a fistful, you need to know how to fit nuts into your diet. Otherwise you could be adding excessive calories without the anticipated health halo. Nuts should substitute less healthful ingredients, nutrition research shows. A recent study from the HSPH called for replacing red meat with nuts, whole grains and low-fat dairy foods. The Harvard experts found that red-meat eaters who switch to nuts for one serving a day reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 21 percent. (However, nuts aren’t the only beneficial food you can switch to, according to nutrition experts who advise eating a variety of plant foods. The same HSPH study showed a similar

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risk reduction for adults who exchange whole grains for red meat.) Eating large amounts of nuts isn’t necessary. A modest intake of walnuts and walnut oil may blunt your body’s response to stress, as West and her Penn State colleagues show in their research. (If your body has an exaggerated biological response to stress, you may be at greater risk for heart disease, according to the Penn State researcher.) Volunteers, with elevated LDL cholesterol, rotated three different diets for six weeks each: one typically American diet, the second with about 18 walnut halves and a tablespoon of walnut oil a day, and the third with the walnut ingredients and flaxseed oil, which also contains omega-3 fatty acids. All three diets were matched for calories, and participants neither gained nor lost weight. After each rotation, volunteers faced stressors: giving a public speech with little preparation and dipping a foot in ice-cold water, followed by blood-pressure readings. Eating walnuts and walnut oil lowered the volunteers’ resting blood pressure and blood-pressure responses. Although current studies emphasize walnuts and pistachios, and you might be inclined to stick with those nuts, experts suggest otherwise. “Nuts do have different nutrient

profiles. So, it makes sense to choose a variety,” Cheung says. The following recipe mixes walnuts and pistachios for a delicious, wholesome entrée salad. Nutty Spinach, Turkey and Orange Salad 7 cups fresh baby spinach 1 medium navel orange or large tangerine, peeled, cut into bite-sized pieces 1 heaping cup cooked, diced turkey breast 2 scallions, trimmed and chopped 1/4 cup shelled, roasted, salted pistachios 1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts 1/4 cup orange juice 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar 1 tablespoon mild-tasting olive oil 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon each: curry powder, smoked paprika and pepper Combine spinach, orange, turkey, scallions, pistachios and walnuts in large salad bowl. Combine juice, vinegar, oil, salt, curry powder, paprika and pepper in small bowl. Stir well. Pour over salad just before serving. Toss gently but well. Makes 4 servings. Each serving has: 232 calories; 13.5 grams total fat; 16 grams protein; 12 grams carbohydrates; 30 milligrams cholesterol; 385.5 milligrams sodium and 3.5 grams dietary fiber. © CTW Features

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What to have in your home to be ready for the worst By Lindsey Romain CTW FEATURES


atural disasters and nuisances come at staggering rates these days, from the horrific tornadoes in the South to the back-to-back power outages that plagued the Northeast following Hurricane Irene and an early 2011 snowstorm. And with such a broad array of possible attacks, being prepared can be daunting. “You obviously don’t want a 50-pound sack preparing for everything you can possibly imagine,� says William Gluckman, the president and CEO of FastER Urgent Care in Morristown, N.J., and a trained hazardous-materials technician through the New Jersey State Police. But it’s possible to be prepared without going overboard. Having key items on hand at all times can benefit


any household hoping to stay on top in the safety department. Here are 10 suggestions for items to keep on stock at all times, just in case.

1. Drinking water

“Drinking water is No. 1,� Gluckman says. The amount needed depends on the number of people in the family. “Generally, I’d say you want a gallon of water per day, per person,� he says.

2. Ready-to-go Food

Cans and other nonperishable food items are obvious selections to keep in stock, but self-heated meals, such as HeaterMeals, also are valuable. In the absence of electricity, HeaterMeals employ a flameless ration heater that can raise the temperature of an 8ounce food pouch at least 100 degrees F, according to the product’s website. The meals also are relatively nutri-

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L i v i ng H e a lthy Iss u e N o . 1 2 0 1 2 tious, with options like chicken pasta, green pepper steak with rice, vegetarian three-cheese lasagna and potatoes with beef.

3. Solar Charger

Gone are the days that communication is barred by fallen telephone poles. Cellphones have increased security measures tenfold. But a dead cellphone is just as invaluable, so investing in a solar charger is a good idea, according to Gluckman.

4. Medicine

Aspirin, the handy, family-favorite miracle drug, should be in every home and is actually best served in chewable form for emergencies. “Four 81-milligram chewable aspirin is the first line of treatment if a possible heart attack occurs,” says Dan Williams, a clinical psychologist at Cherokee Health Systems, Alcoa, Tenn. Williams, developer and co-owner of Survive Outdoors, a website devoted

to first aid and outdoor skills, also suggests keeping ibuprofen for pain relief, acetaminophen for fever reduction, diphenydramine and over-the-counter Benadryl for allergic reactions, and basic antacids, anti-diarrheal agents and laxatives.

5. Prescription medicine

Keeping extra personal prescriptions on hand also could be a lifesaver. “Murphy’s Law would say that the day you’re going to pick up the resale on your prescription is the day you’re going have a problem,” Gluckman says.

6. Space blanket

“Heat loss is a big problem for a trauma patient,” says Gluckman, who suggests keeping a space or a thermal blanket to use in a situation when the power is out and a person may be suffering an injury.

7. Radio

It may be old-school, but having a battery-operated radio with basic AM capabilities can keep those trapped in their homes up to date on the goings-on outdoors. “There are plenty of local stations that will be giving warnings for floods and other impending problems,” Gluckman says.

8. Wound dressings

In the event of an injury, it’s always important to have proper and clean materials for dressing wounds. Gluckman and Williams both suggest bandages, wraps and gauze, including a variety of bandage sizes, as wound-size will vary.

9. Topical antibiotic ointments

Before dressing a wound, clean it to ward off later side effects, like disease and infection. Having a strong topical antibiotic ointment can do this, but Williams says to be careful. “Twenty to 25 percent of the population is allergic to neomycin,” he says, noting the common antibiotic-ointment ingredient. “I would advise an ointment without that ingredient, like bacitracin.”

10. Working carbon monoxide and smoke detectors

While detectors may not fit into a ready-to-go kit, they’re some of the most important safety tools for a household, according to Gluckman. Be sure to keep them loaded with fresh batteries and subject them to regular tests. They can alert people to immediate dangers even when the power is out. © CTW Features

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Sleep Tight in 2012

Break the bad-sleep cycle for better health By Ben Larrison CTW FEATURES


he average person has probably heard it his entire life, from when he was a kid with a bedtime to his latest physical: If you want to be at your best, make sure you get enough sleep. But despite the warnings, chances are we’re never quite as wellrested as we wish we were. Sleep loss effects people in plenty of negative ways, from heightened irritability to a weakened immune system, so making sure you get your Z’s should be considered pretty crucial. Yet while doctors recommend adults get about seven and a half hours of sleep per night, a 2011 National Sleep Foundation report said Americans average less than seven hours on weeknights. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to both develop healthy sleep habits and get more out of your sleep. For starters, establish and stick to a good sleep routine. “Routine is very important, as far as being able to go to sleep properly and easily,” says Dr. William Kohler, medical director of the Florida Sleep Institute in Spring Hill, Fla. “The routine is very significant.” While falling asleep at a reasonable hour obviously is beneficial toward getting a good night’s sleep, perhaps even more significant is waking up at the same time every morning — yes, even on weekends. “Getting up that same time every day is very important to keeping that internal clock,” says Dr. Ronald Popper of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine in Darien, Ill. That being said, you cannot force yourself to go to sleep. “The cardinal rule is that you don’t go to bed at a particular time, you go to bed because you’re sleepy,” says Popper,

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“The cardinal rule is that you don’t go to bed at a particular time, you go to bed because you’re sleepy.” 

— Dr. Ronald Popper, American Academy of Sleep Medicine

“not just at 10 or 11 o’clock at night.” If you don’t fall asleep within 15-20 minutes of getting into bed, he says, “Get out of bed, go into another room, and do something relaxing until you become sleepy.” One way to help ensure you are tired when you first get into bed: exercise. “Daily, vigorous exercise really, really helps for people who have any type of (trouble sleeping),” says Dr. Lisa Shives, medical director at Northshore Sleep Medicine in Evanston, Ill. Sleep doctors recommend getting 30 to 60 minutes of cardio approximately 4 to 5 hours before going to bed, as exercise too close to bedtime can lead to an epinephrine buildup that may keep you from getting to sleep. If that does not work into your schedule, lean on the side of working out earlier in the day rather than later. But like so many sleep-related habits, it’s ultimately going to be up to your personal preferences. Figuring out when to exercise “…is really easy for a patient to experiment his or her self,” says Shives, the sleep expert at “For two weeks, do your exercise early in the morning. If you’re actually able to choose when to do it, you can be your own control. See what works best for you.” After all that exercise, you’re bound to work up an appetite. But keep in mind the choices you make about what you eat and drink could wind up affecting you come bedtime. Some basic foods and drinks to avoid before bed include simple carbohydrates, caffeine, and alcohol — even if it initially makes you sleepy. “Alcohol can actually help you get to sleep,” Kohler says, “but

once you metabolize the alcohol it destroys the quality of sleep.” Popper put it more bluntly: “Using alcohol to assist in sleep is a really bad idea.” If you’re looking for a good pre-bed snack, try a high-fat, high-protein food, such as cheese. All right, so you’ve worked out, you’ve eaten right — what else factors into a good night’s sleep? Well if you want to be sleep-ready come bedtime, it’s important to not go to bed overstimulated. “You need to get the brain so that it will shut off so you can get to sleep,” Kohler says. Video games, computer programs and action-packed movies or TV shows are all things to avoid just before bed. In fact, “in the one to two hours before your desired bedtime, you really want to keep light as dim as possible,” Shives says. “When you get light at 11 o’clock at night, it’s telling your brain it’s time to get up and feed the chickens, and can really just turn on the wrong neurotransmitters.” In general, the majority of sleep professionals seem to agree it’s best to avoid using the bedroom for anything that isn’t sleep. “Break the association of the bedroom from wakefulness,” Popper says. “So that means no wake-time activities in the bed.” In the end, getting the most out of sleep depends on you and your own personal habits and preferences. What type of mattress to buy, how many blankets you use, the temperature at which you keep your bedroom — it’s all a matter of comfort and opinion. Sleep tight! © CTW Features

6 Bedroom Fixes For a Better Night’s Sleep 1

Do your best to keep light in the bedroom to a minimum. Avoid overhead light if you can, and, when reading, use a book light or, better yet, listen to an audiobook.


If you don’t have a personal preference, try keeping the bedroom cooler rather than warmer — it mimics the descent in cooling of body temperature we experience when we sleep. “Most people report they feel better with a cool environment,” says Dr. Lisa Shives, medical director at Northshore Sleep Medicine in Evanston, Ill.


Too much light infiltrating your bedroom? Try blackout shades, which should be available at your local furniture or hardware store, in addition to online retailers.


Is your spouse a snorer? A good pair of earplugs makes for a simple, cheap solution. It might take time to adapt to wearing them at night, but it will be worth it in the long run.


If external noises are the problem, there are plenty of remedies, including white-noise machines or smartphone apps. Just be sure to find one that works for you.


As tempting as it may be to sleep with your favorite furry friends, it’s best to keep pets out of the bedroom. “Pets are a very common cause of awakening at night, by jumping on the bed and barking or meowing,” says Dr. Ronald Popper of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine in Darien, Ill.

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Festive Fitness See more photos at

A record 2,800 runners and walkers joined in the annual Christmas Run through Boise’s North End on Dec. 17. The crowd included an impressive array of costumed characters — Santas, reindeer, elves, Christmas presents and more. The event, which featured both a 2.5-mile run/walk and a 6.1-mile run, is presented by the Treasure Valley YMCA.

Photos by Katherine Jones/

sunDAY, january 1, 2012 • living healthy 23 • Idaho Statesman


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Living Healthy - January 2012  

Idaho Statesman's Living Healthy magazine

Living Healthy - January 2012  

Idaho Statesman's Living Healthy magazine