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APRIL 2009

Men, Get the Lines Out! Shift Work Health Challenges

Stage Your Home for a QUICK $ELL BEWARE of Medication and Food Interactions Overcoming Life’s Obstacles

April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living



Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Meds and


– Not Always a Recipe for Good Health by Kristy Armand


f you’re taking prescription medications, you should be aware that certain medications and certain foods should not be mixed. According to Renee Baudin, PD, Director of the Pharmacy at Jennings American Legion Hospital, there are several food/drug interactions that people should be aware of. “Some medications may not be as effective as they should be if you eat certain foods, and other food/drug interactions can even cause serious side effects.” Baudin says people are often surprised to learn that even healthy foods can cause problems in combination with specific types of medications. “It’s not the degree of ‘healthiness’ of the food that matters in these instances, but the chemicals in the food that interact – and react – with the ingredients in the medication.” Here are some of the most critical food interactions you should avoid for certain classes of medications, according to Baudin.

AnTicoAgulAnTs Anticoagulants, often referred to as “blood thinners,” help to prevent the formation of blood clots. Common examples are Plavix and Coumadin (Warfarin). interactions to avoid: • Vitamin K produces blood-clotting substances and may reduce the effectiveness of anticoagulants. So limit the amount of foods high in vitamin K (such as broccoli, spinach, kale, turnip greens, cauliflower, and Brussel sprouts) if you are taking a blood thinner. • High doses of vitamin E (400 IU or more) may prolong clotting time and increase the risk of bleeding. Talk to your doctor before taking vitamin E supplements.

AnTi-AnxieTy MedicATions Common name brands include Ativan (lorazepam) , Valium (diazepam) and Xanax (alprazolam). interactions to avoid • Alcohol in combination with these types of medication may impair mental and motor performance (e.g., driving, operating machinery). • Caffeine may cause excitability, nervousness, and hyperactivity, and lessen the anti-anxiety effects of the drugs.

Quinolones These are a class of antibiotics that include Cipro, Levaquin, Avelox and Factive. interactions to avoid: • Calcium-containing products like milk, yogurt, vitamins or minerals containing iron, and antacids because they significantly decrease drug concentration. These medications are best to take on an empty stomach one hour before or two hours after meals. If your stomach gets upset, take it with food.

April 2009

AnTifungAls Familiar prescriptions include Diflucan (Fluconazole), Grifulvin, Nizoral (ketoconazole) and Sporanox. interactions to avoid: • It is important to avoid taking these medications with dairy products (milk, cheeses, yogurt, ice cream), or antacids. • Avoid drinking alcohol, using medications that contain alcohol, or eating foods prepared with alcohol while you are taking these types of medications for at least three days after you finish the medication. Alcohol in combination with these drugs may cause nausea, abdominal cramps, vomiting, headaches and flushing.

MAo inhibiTors These are a class of drugs used to treat depression and Parkinson’s disease. Name brands include Nardil and Marplan. interactions to avoid: • MAO inhibitors may interact with tyramine, a chemical found in many drugs, foods, and beverages. If you consume foods or alcoholic drinks containing tyramine, a rapid and potentially life-threatening rise in blood pressure can occur. Foods and drinks high in tyramine include smoked, aged, or pickled meat or fish; sauerkraut; aged cheeses (e.g., swiss, cheddar, blue, boursault, camembert, emmenthaler, stilton); yeast extracts; fava beans; beef or chicken liver; aged sausages (e.g., bologna, pepperoni, salami, summer sausage); game meats (e.g., venison, rabbit); and red wines (e.g., chianti, sherry). Baudin says grapefruit juice is one type of food that has received a great deal of attention in recent years due to its potentially adverse interactions with different types of medications. “Enzymes in the body’s digestive system break down medications to a certain degree, and this is accounted for in the production of the medication. And while grapefruit juice provides many nutrients, including vitamin C, potassium and lycopene, other chemicals in grapefruit juice and grapefruit pulp interfere with these enzymes that break down medications, such as cholesterol-lowering meds, blood thinners, blood pressure drugs, tranquilizers, or antidepressants,” explains Baudin. “The result can be excessively high levels of these drugs entering the bloodstream, which can lead to uncomfortable and even potentially serious, side effects.” The best advice, says Baudin, is to read all the medication information you receive with your prescription. Possible food/drug interactions should be explained in detail. “If you have any further questions or concerns, you should always ask your doctor or your pharmacist.”

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


Thrive is designed for people focused on living a happy, healthy life, one that is balanced, full of energy and contentment. Thrive readers want to make the most of every day and be successful in all areas of their lives – family, health, home and career.

don’T jusT live, Thrive! editors and Publishers

Kristy Armand christine fisher

creative director

barbara vangossen


Tony lee

Assistant editor

erin K. cormier

Advertising sales

danielle granger Ashley gatte 337.310.2099


by Rose Klein Q: I have been invited to a party and would like to send flowers to my hosts. Do I send the flowers before or after the party? A: If the party is given especially for you, send flowers to your hostess beforehand. Otherwise, flowers sent after the event are always a thoughtful and appreciated gift. or fax to 337.312.0976

Submitted articles and photos are welcome. Thrive assumes no responsibility for unsolicited materials and does not guarantee any submissions.

it’s time for your business to Thrive!

Thanks to our full color pages, high quality printing and fun, informative format, Thrive is the perfect place to showcase your business through advertising. We’d love to spend a few minutes with you to put together an advertising plan that works for your business.

Q: Dear friends of ours who are Jewish have invited my family to a Passover Seder in their home. We have no idea what to expect or what is expected of us. What should I do? A: If she is, in fact, a dear friend, then you should be able to be honest and ask her. Tell her that you are looking forward to learning more about her faith and customs. Ask what you might bring to the Seder and what you might read ahead of time to enable you to participate more fully. This is not impolite, but indicates your genuine interest.

Q: When invited to a shower or party and in the invitation it is noted where the honoree is registered, are you required to purchase a gift that has been preselected?

danielle granger, Sales Manager 310-2099

Ashley gatte, Sales Representative 310-2099


A: The registered gifts are “sure things” as the honoree has selected these as items they need or wish to have. But, you are under no obligation to purchase a gift from their registered list. Many people have favorite items that they prefer to give. For instance, framing the wedding invitation as a keepsake is one such favorite.

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

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April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


We’re Number 1!


’ve been told by the Thrive editors that I need to do more articles about workplace issues. (Apparently there’s a book of these little rants of mine in the works.) It’s hard for me because I believe that the way you live your life should be consistent both at work and at home, and most of the things you deal with at work are also dealt with at home. I’ll never forget cracking up when I heard people saying that what Bill Clinton did in his private life had no bearing on his ability to be president. Please! If you will lie and cheat with your family, then you will most certainly do so in business (and vice-versa). But I digress. I’ve been doing a lot of training lately on harassment issues – diversity, sexual harassment, bullying, etc. This training is some of my favorite because I get to gently challenge the way many people have been thinking all their lives. Today I’d like to tackle the issue of diversity. First, we must understand that we are all racist, genderist, ageist, etc., to some degree. Whenever I hear people say, “I don’t see color,” I know they are lying to themselves and everyone around them. It’s impossible not to see color, gender, age, physical challenges, and/or sexual orientation and not have some emotion connected to it. The trick is acknowledging it and overcoming it. When doing my research for the harassment workshops, I came across one of the most helpful words: ethnocentrism. Ethnocentrism is the tendency we have to make whatever group we are a part of be the best in our minds. We always want to be on the winning team! So, whether we’re talking about race, age, gender, etc., we think that whatever we are is best. It’s really a survival skill. If we thought we were “less than” all the time, we would soon give up. So, it’s understandable. It’s just not realistic. And it’s problematic in that it does not leave room for other groups to feel good about themselves. So, it becomes a matter of us all fighting to be “number 1.” And if there is only room for one winner, then everyone else must be losers. No one wants to be a loser!

• Take a look at history. Exclusion is nothing new. The Bible tells of scholars who shunned tax collectors. In Medieval times lefthanded people were thought to be evil (and some of you may have been forced to write with your right hand even though it felt unnatural). Many groups from different ethnic backgrounds were thought to be unteachable. How ridiculous it all seems now! • Take a look at your personal past. How were people “different” from you and your family viewed? Were they talked about? Was it in a positive or negative light? Who was invited to your house? Was it unspoken but clear that only people who looked like you could come over? • I have a friend who is physically challenged. She has spent most of her life in a wheel chair. When we talk of her childhood, many of her memories are very sad. She remembers everyone being so nice to her at school, but never once was she invited to birthday parties or over to someone’s house to play. Her invitations to do the same were never accepted. • Take a look at your current life. Who is in it? Who is clearly not included? Who do you keep on the perimeter, and who is truly a part of the discussion? Oh, you’re nice to everyone and say “Hi,” to all, but who do you choose to let in a little deeper (and what do you base it on)? • Acknowledge that this is an area you need to work on, and begin to make conscious changes. One of my favorite billboards was one that simply said, “He’s a well-spoken black man.” The word “black” was marked through. It really made me think about how many times I attach a characteristic of no importance to a description of someone. Following this logic, “He’s a well spoken black man,” becomes “He’s a well spoken man,” which becomes, “He’s well spoken.” I challenge you to begin looking at how often you let characteristics skew your view of others.

So, how can we all win at this diversity thing? I have some suggestions:


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• Take a look at your business life. Do you treat people differently based on gender, color, age, etc.? Do you assume that one gender can grasp whatever you’re speaking about more easily than another? Do you assume that the young person with tattoos and piercings can’t possibly have an intelligent conversation? Are people who are different from you truly included in discussions? Do they have a place at the table where their voices are genuinely acknowledged? The issue at hand is learning to accept each person as an individual without making assumptions based on characteristics. How can skin color make you smarter or dumber? About the same way that eye color can. Not at all. However, as I leave you this month I must say that left-handed women in their forties really are number one!!

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Exercise Your Right to


arms by Christine Fisher

While the shape of the national housing market, economy and investment portfolio isn’t turning many heads, the shape of the First Lady’s toned arms is a different story. Regardless of political preference, many Americans heartily approve of her choice to show them off. Baring them often in sleeveless dresses, Michelle Obama is turning heads while making history. During President Obama’s first address to Congress, for her official White House portrait, and throughout the campaign, Ms. Obama opted for a sleeveless dress showing the results of a healthy lifestyle and dedication at the gym. The first lady’s staff says she is committed to spending time working out, choosing to exercise for over an hour three days per week.“She’s a good example of how to creatively work in exercise time,” said Christine Hebert, exercise specialist with Dynamic Dimensions.“It doesn’t have to be 45 minutes 5 days a week, or nothing at all. You can choose to break it up throughout the day or cluster it into larger chunks a few days a week. The overall point is to get moving.” But, what movements in particular will result in toned arms like Michelle’s? Hebert says we should take another look at the old-fashioned push-up.“It works the arms, chest and pretty much the whole body. Every major body part is engaged, even the core muscles along the stomach and back, to stabilize the body. Push-ups use your own body weight, don’t require any equipment, and, when modified for beginners, most everyone can do them. The basic principal of the push-up requires you to lift your body using the upper back, chest and arms, then slowly lower back down. Anyone who has tried it though, knows it’s not that simple.“It takes skill to work up to a flawless push-up,” she said.“Most of the time, the hips are the last to lift up; but in a perfect push-up, the body lifts in one smooth motion. Ideally, the chest shouldn’t touch the floor when you come down.”

April 2009

Beginners can do the same movement, but with knees bent. This cuts the weight-bearing load almost in half. Aim to keep a straight line from neck to knees. Other arm-toning moves include tricep and bicep curls and shoulder presses. Using bands and free weights will give needed resistance. Hebert advised setting up a workout routine with a personal trainer.“Let them know your goals and they will design a schedule specifically for you, tailored to your needs. You’ll see results.” Toning the arms benefits the whole body, according to fitness experts. Because we sit for hours at a computer, then spend more time at the steering wheel, followed by slumping on the couch, posture is passé. By working the arms, chest and upper back, the body gets in proper alignment allowing for greater range of motion. Push for a feeling of fatigue when completing repetitions. To get bare-arm beautiful, Hebert says most women benefit from choosing a weight that is five or ten pounds more than they might reach for initially.“It’s about using your limited time wisely. Make it count with as much weight as you can lift safely. When you’re finished, you should feel tired,” she explained. Keep in mind that your arms are connected to the rest of your body.“You can’t spot-reduce, so only doing tricep curls won’t give you the arms, or the body shape, you’re looking for. Working the whole body will promote good health and reduce body fat everywhere.” Combining a good cardiovascular routine with strength training, and paying particular attention to the amount of weight and type of movements, will give you the sculpted look that calls out for those sleeveless dresses and shirts this summer. For details about setting up a personal training session, or any fitness question, call Dynamic Dimensions in Sulphur at 527-5459 or Moss Bluff at 855-7708.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


There are many four-letter words that will always get the “bad” label, but debt is not necessarily one of them. debt is often categorized as bad by consumers, but all debt is not created equal, and can’t be lumped together under one label. debt can be good or bad, depending on how it is used.

Credit cards? Probably bad. Home loan? Probably good. Car loan, college loan, vacation loan? Depends.

is not Always a four-letter Word


ome of your debt is probably invested in things that will increase in value, like a home. That’s good, according to Barbara Chaisson, Assistant Vice President with Cameron State Bank. “There is no standard answer when it comes to financial planning, home budgeting, or debt. Consumers have been taught that credit cards are bad, but that’s not always the case. Although they are probably not the best source of debt, sometimes credit cards can prove useful financially. One of their greatest benefits is that they can help you increase your credit score. On the other side of the coin, however, is the reality that it can also hurt your credit score tremendously if you don’t manage them wisely.”

by Kristy Armand

Chaisson says the key to keeping your credit card debt on the fair side of financing is to make sure that you use them sparingly and never rely on them for everyday expenses, like groceries. If you keep the balance low, pay the balance in full each month (or as close as you can get), and pay on time, you prevent your credit card debt from going “bad.” One form of bad debt is debt that is used to pay for something consumable that offers no potential for growth. That’s why credit cards have traditionally been considered “bad.” “There are other forms of bad debt, certainly. If you borrow money for use on something that offers nothing tangible in return, that’s usually not a good idea. Some people take out loans for vacations, but generally that’s not a smart thing to do,” Chaisson said. “Obviously vacations provide an emotional, mental and even physical reward, but the important rule to follow is to not go into debt if you have nothing to show for it. Also, if you’re taking out a loan for a vacation, obviously you can’t afford the vacation in the first place.”


Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

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– Barbara Chaisson A reasonable litmus test for debt is to ask yourself if the item being financed will last longer than the loan itself. Whereas a vacation loan might be a poor choice for becoming indebted, student loans are often considered wise choices because of the increased earning potential from an advanced education. Likewise, Chaisson says if you finance a car for five years or less, it can be considered a form of good debt because the car will probably be in good shape after you’re finished paying for it. “Finance a car for a longer length of time, and the story can change.” Chaisson says home loans are another obvious form of “good debt” because once your home is paid off, you’ll own it out-right and have the potential to earn more money from it if you sell it. “Good debt usually doesn’t develop because a consumer decides to accumulate debt just for the sake of building a credit portfolio,” says Chaisson. “Typically, good debt is a natural process that is borne from wise financial decisions for the future.”

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living


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JALH provides a wide range of high quality health services in our community, including: • Emergency Medicine • Orthopedics • Radiology • Intensive Care Unit • Cardiology • Labor and Delivery • Respiratory Therapy • Laboratory • Surgery, including Outpatient Surgery

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living


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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009


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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

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It can certainly be “ overwhelming, especially

when there has been little mental, emotional or financial preparation.

– Mickey Shannon


as Parents: La. Ranks Fourth in the U.S.

In addition to concerns related to health care, aging and everyday costs of living, a significant portion of senior citizens in America have shouldered another hefty responsibility – the rearing of their grandchildren. Nearly 6 million children in America today live with a grandparent, comprising about 8 percent of all children in the U.S., according to the Census Bureau. In Louisiana, which has the fourth-highest percentage of grandparents raising grandkids in the U.S., that number is closer to 10 percent. A study by the AARP Foundation found that 117,859 of Louisiana children live in grandparentheaded households, with another 26,691 living in households of other relatives. Among grandparents raising grandchildren in the U.S., 39 percent have done so for five or more years, according to the Census Bureau. “As caregivers, grandparents face unique challenges. When a grandchild is placed with a grandparent for primary care, it is often the result of a family crisis, such as a divorce, illness, or financial strain. In addition to that, grandparents have the usual concerns that people of that age have to deal with. Although today’s grandparents are healthier than ever, raising a child is an emotional and physical investment for anyone of any age,” said Mickey Shannon, executive director of Samaritan Counseling Center in Lake Charles. In many cases, the grandparents had not planned to raise any more children, and some are still in the workforce, adding further potential stress to the family situation. “It can certainly be overwhelming, especially when there has been little mental, emotional or financial preparation,” Shannon said.“To further complicate matters, the grandchildren can find themselves in childhood or adolescent 14

situations that the grandparent hasn’t dealt with in 15 or 20 years.”

The AARP Foundation and Samaritan Counseling Center offered the following tips to help grandparents manage their newfound responsibilities as primary caregivers: • The lines of family authority can become confusing for grandparents, parents and grandchildren. To avoid this, make sure that guidelines for discipline are discussed and that major decisions are made cooperatively, if possible. Be sure that the adults understand their personal expectations and how they plan to achieve them with the children. • Maintain a healthy lifestyle. Caregiving is stressful, which makes healthy living more important than ever. Keep your annual appointments, eat well and exercise. An added benefit is that this sets a positive example for the grandchildren. • Becoming a primary caregiver unexpectedly can cause resentment. Do not allow this resentment to manifest itself around the grandchildren. Avoid making negative comments about the grandchild’s parents, or about the situation that created the new family environment. • Set a good example by calmly working out disputes, especially with the grandchild’s parents. • Ask for help when needed. There are resources available for grandparents raising grandkids, including the Louisiana Office of Community Services and the Calcasieu Council on Aging. “Grandparents play a vital role in their grandchildren’s lives, no matter what the living situation is,” Shannon said.“In the end, the decisions made by the family should be in the best interest of the child. There is nothing more fulfilling than watching a young child grow into a responsible adult, and that’s true for parents and grandparents.”

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

A New Way to Treat

Two of the greatest threats to the human sinus cavity are airborne allergies, such as ragweed or pollen, and high levels of humidity, both of which are prominent in Southwest Louisiana. Allergens, fluctuating temperatures and other environmental conditions are known to trigger chronic sinusitis, an annoying and often painful ailment that adversely effects quality of life by causing fatigue, headache, pain and other frustrating symptoms.

by Erin K. Cormier

According to the Center for Disease Control, sinusitis is one of the most common illnesses in the U.S., affecting an estimated 37 million Americans and leading to 500,000 surgeries a year. “Sinusitis is extremely common and is prevalent in this area,” said Raphael Chan, MD, an otolaryngologist with The Clinic in Lake Charles. “In the past it has been treated primarily through medical therapy treatments, such as sprays, antibiotics and steroids. More severe cases have required surgery. While surgery is a viable treatment option for chronic or acute sinusitis, many patients prefer a less invasive procedure.” Approved by the Federal Drug Administration in 2005, an outpatient procedure known as Balloon Sinuplasty has been increasingly used as a treatment for sinus suffers. Balloon Sinuplasty, which is less invasive than traditional forms of surgical treatment, is used to restore normal sinus drainage by widening constricted sinus passages with catheters and balloons inserted through the nostrils. More than 40,000 patients have received the treatment since the FDA clearance in 2005. Two multicenter studies have found that patients have 92 percent functional patency after one year. Eighty-five percent reported continued improvement in their sinus symptoms after two years, with clinically and statistically significant improvements in quality of life. None of the patients in the clinical trial reported serious adverse side effects. “As with most surgical treatments, physicians performing sinusitis treatment hope to keep as much of the natural anatomy intact as possible. That can be accomplished through this procedure, while still providing relief,” Dr. Chan said. “People who don’t suffer from sinusitis often underestimate how greatly it can effect quality of life, but those who are regular sufferers certainly understand. Even if the pain is minimal, chronic sinusitis typically causes unrelenting fatigue and headache, both of which have a significant negative effect on daily living.” Recovery times vary after sinus surgery, but patients typically return to normal activities within 24 hours of treatment. According to Dr. Chan, most suffers of chronic or acute sinusitis are candidates for the procedure, unless they have nasal polyps that could require surgery.


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Chronic sinusitis means that symptoms occur frequently or for long periods of time. The symptoms are usually more annoying than painful; however, those with chronic sinusitis are more likely to have bouts of the more painful acute sinusitis. April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


Boaters, Brush Up on Your As boaters take to the warm waters of spring and summer, Ship to Shore of Lake Charles reminds them to practice proper American flag etiquette. There are guidelines for flags over water, just as there are for flags on land. Here’s a quick look at the U.S. Flag Code for boaters, provided by Ship to Shore:

• American flags should not be dipped for any reason. It is flown upside down only as a distress signal.

• When the flag is lowered, no part of it should touch the ground or any other object. To accomplish this, lower the flag into waiting hands and arms. • The flag should not be used as drapery for any reason. • When the flag begins to fray, it should be cleaned and mended as soon as possible. Over-worn flags can be brought to Ship to Shore for proper disposal.

flag etiquette

• The flag should not be embroidered or decorated for advertising purposes. • When flown with flags of states, communities or societies, the U.S. flag

should be flown at the top. No other flag should be larger than the American flag. • The U.S. flag is always the first raised and the last lowered. • The flag should be raised briskly and lowered slowly and ceremoniously. • Ordinarily, the American flag should only be displayed between sunrise and sunset. If it’s raised during nighttime, it should be illuminated. • The flag should not be used as part of a costume or uniform. For a complete look at the U.S. Flag Code, visit Ship to Shore or

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

by Erin K. Cormier

Embrace the Earth Americans celebrate Earth Day this month, but to truly become good stewards of our environment, we have to broaden our spectrum beyond the month of April. To find out how individuals can become environmentally friendly year-round, we talked to people who practice it themselves. Here, the members of Green Habits, a local environmental advocacy group, share their tips on how we can become better friends of the Earth. consuelo labrador says we should “take care of the Earth like it is one of our precious belongings and be more aware of how we use our natural resources. We are destroying the environment, which is our true home. It’s necessary that we change our habits for more environmental friendly products.” chelsea boudreaux wants you to think twice about your trash. “Once you throw it in the garbage, it’s ‘out of sight, out of mind.’ By reducing waste, reusing anything you can and recycling the rest, you are reducing what ends up in landfills.” Use reusable bags and containers, avoid disposables, use email instead of paper cards or letters, choose products with minimal or recyclable packaging, buy fresh fruits and vegetables, buy in bulk, and turn off the lights when you leave, Adriana Arango suggests. “The key is to start somewhere.”

If you think Edison did a lot for the light bulb, you should see what we’re doing for sockets. Bright ideas are nothing new at Center for Orthopaedics. And when it comes to innovative joint procedures, we really shine. From resurfacing your joint surface with space-age materials to high-tech computer assisted surgery for joint replacement, excellence in advanced orthopaedic care is always in our spotlight. There is no need to travel to receive the highest level of orthopaedic care. We’re providing the latest advances right here for patients in Southwest Louisiana. If you have joint pain, give us a call. Maybe we didn’t invent the light bulb, but no one will work harder to give you a brighter future. CFO is the region's largest independent orthopaedic practice, providing patient-focused care for patients of all ages, including:

• Fracture Care • Sports Medicine

• Joint Replacement Surgery • Arthroscopic Surgery • Occupational Injuries • Back Pain and Spine Surgery

(337) 721-7CFO (7236)

New Lake Charles Office Opening April 20: 1747 Imperial Blvd. Sulphur Office: 250 S. Beglis Pkwy., Ste. 1

“We can become better friends of the earth by reducing, reusing, and lastly recycling all that we can and by educating others to do the same,” Wendy Mccown said. For lensi White, building a friendship with the environment is simple: “We can become better friends of the earth by taking care of everything in it and loving all that God created in it for us to enjoy.”

James D. Perry, MD • Geoffrey J. Collins, MD • John W. Noble, Jr., MD • Gehron P.Treme, MD • Craig G. Morton, MD


Dr. Tyson Green, Foot & Ankle Specialist, and Dr. Steven Hale, Orthopaedic Surgeon April 2009

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Inve$tor$: It’s No Time to Panic If you’re an investor, fear and greed are your worst enemies, not economic recessions and declining returns. According to Dustin R. Granger, CFP® a Financial Advisor with Wachovia Securities, “if you conquer fear and greed, you will be rewarded for your stress.” Granger, a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Professional, said antsy investors, challenged by the nation’s foreboding economic future, should take control of their emotions and remain focused. In other words: Do not panic. “We’re hardwired as human beings to follow the herd, which can result in bad investment decisions. Although this may make us feel comfortable in the short term, it can ruin a long-term plan,” he said. Below are some general tips for investors to keep their sanity in check, despite the endless news cycle of dismal returns and continued economic hardship:

• Develop a written financial plan or revisit your existing one. Determine realistic goals and time frames to reach them. • Meet with your financial advisor to make sure that you are on-track to meet your needs, despite daily market moves. This helps you focus on

what’s important, instead of the emotional roller coaster that mainstream media provides. • Exercise patience and understand the market. The market is volatile and changes constantly. To be a savvy and determined investor, you need to know when to stay the course. If you decide to pull out of the market, make sure it’s an educated, rather than emotional, decision. • Diversify your portfolio and watch your asset allocation. This is a key indicator of financial success. If your portfolio is too heavy on one field or industry, it can be vulnerable to market downfalls. • Be a smart investor. Don’t throw money in the market based on what you see on the news today or tomorrow. Have a solid understanding of longterm investing. • Stay calm. Even though hundreds, perhaps thousands, of market experts are making their predictions, no one really knows what will happen one month, or one year, from now. Maintain control of your financial goals to keep your peace of mind. For more information on investing during recession, contact Dustin R. Granger, CFP® at Wachovia Securities, 439-9081.

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April 2009

Listening Device May Affect Cardiac Device and ty Arm is r K y b

It’s time to remove the welcome mat for ants, roaches, termites and any other pesky

If you have an implanted cardiac device and listen to music through ear buds, then there’s some important information you should hear. New research presented recently by Harvard researchers at an annual scientific session of the American Heart Association shows that carrying the ear buds of your iPod in a shirt pocket or draped around your neck could interfere with the function of implantable pacemakers or cardioverter defibrallators (ICDs). According to cardiac electrophysiologist William Bailey, MD, with Louisiana Heart Rhythm Specialists in Lafayette, the interaction occurs at around two centimeters or less – approximately one inch – so there is no risk when the ear buds are worn in your ears, but when they are close to the area in which your device is implanted, you could have problems. “The ear buds contain magnets, and it’s this magnetic field that can temporarily disable or interfere with the normal functioning of the implanted cardiac device. And this magnetic field exists whether the device is turned on or not, and even when the ear buds are not attached to the iPod. It’s the magnet inside that causes the interference, not the power coming from the music player itself.”

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Previous research has indicated that iPods have little, if any, effect on pacemakers and ICDs, and a statement from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration confirmed that interactions between MP3 players and implanted devices are unlikely. But less attention has been placed on headphones and ear buds, and this study was the first of its kind to address this issue. Dr. Bailey said he experienced this same phenomenon years ago when he had a patient who carried an old style 9V transistor radio in his shirt pocket. The speaker of this radio had a magnet in it, and it would alternately turn the patient’s ICD off and on. “We kept adjusting his device and then finally figured out the radio was causing the problem. He stopped carrying it in his shirt pocket and the problem was solved.” The interference caused by ear buds is unlikely to cause life-threatening problems, and may be more of annoyance than a serious health risk, but experts agree it’s best to not take a chance, and to be cautious. The authors of the study recommend those with ICDs and pacemakers keep these devices or any type of speakers more than an inch away from the site of their implant. “I’d advise keeping these away from your chest or torso area, just to be safe,” says Dr Bailey. “Instead of your breast pocket, put it in your pants pocket or purse, and don’t let the speakers hang from your shoulder or neck.” April 2009

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1717 W. Prien Lake Rd. Lake Charles

(337) 474-7377

Shielding What’s Near and Dear



Restaurant GUIDE

REWARD Tender and Lean LA for Thank You SW Voting Us

We’re Spilling the Beans!

Make a smart choice and visit these restaurants for delicious, healthy dishes.


Express Drive Thru or Dine In 478-5858 • 2635 Country Club Road, Lake Charles Tues. - Sat. 11am - 7pm; Sunday 11am - 3pm.

Whatever Your Taste... We’ve Got Your # We really do have something for everyone! On a special diet or counting carbs? We’ve added Specialty Salads and Low Carb Tortillas. Fat Free Cheeses, dressings and spreads add an even lighter dimension to our menu. Not just delicious, but healthy and hearty too. We’re not just the original rolled sandwich, we’re the original healthy sandwich too!

Whether you are dining in or calling in for takeout, let The Luna Bar and Grill do all the work.

Healthiest restaurant in town…no sacrifice on taste!

Come in today for one of our specialty salads, stellar sandwiches, or exceptional entreés. We offer many choices for the health conscious individual. We’re locally owned and the best place in town for live entertainment, food, and drinks.

3100 Ryan Street • (337) 433-3130

Thanks for five years of business! 20

• • • • • •

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Visit us online @

719 RYAN STREET • DOWNTOWN – LAKE CHARLES Thrive Magazine for Better Living

(337) 494-LUNA April 2009

Green Thumbs Have Health Benefits by Laila Morcos For many, gardening is a form of therapy. Pulling weeds, watering flowers and planting trees helps amateur gardeners pull closer to nature and away from the stresses of everyday life. In addition to providing a productive escapism, doctors say gardening provides several health benefits by creating various forms of sometimes strenuous exercise. “Gardening may just be an ideal form of exercise because of all the physical exertion,” says Marne’ Devillier, M.D., family physician with Maplewood Family Practice. “You expend a lot of calories while gardening, for a number of reasons. Just think about your movement when you’re gardening. You have to stretch to reach some hidden areas in your yard. You lift and move pots and plants. You could burn more than 100 calories per hour while gardening.” Calories melt off by shoveling dirt, mowing the lawn, tilling, clearing land, trimming plants, picking up and putting down fertilizer and watering the lawn. Research has found that those individuals with a green thumb can burn as many as 200 calories by laying sod, more than 180 calories through weed-eating, and about 162 calories bagging leaves. “Gardening is hard work, no doubt about it. Because it can be so strenuous, it can also increase bone density and strengthen joints,” Dr. Devillier said. “Many people enjoy find working in their yards relaxing, so it will be no surprise to them that studies have shown that gardening can also help decrease stress levels. While you garden, you’re typically focused on one activity, allowing you to escape in the action and enter a very meditative

April 2009

state. When your brain goes into this deep level of focus, stress is relieved and energy is restored. There’s something very peaceful about getting your hands dirty and watching the results of your work grow. It provides a sense of accomplishment.” Gardening also nourishes the body with plenty of vitamin D through sun exposure, which has been found to protect against certain cancers and help with calcium absorption, “but you only need a few minutes of sun a day to get the recommended dosage, so make sure you wear sunscreen,” Dr. Devillier said. She also reminds gardeners not to overexert their bodies, which could result in injury. It’s best to approach gardening as a form of exercise, which requires proper stretching and warming up to avoid injury. “You don’t want to work your body too hard. It’s easy to do that when you’re lost in the garden.” According to the LSU AgCenter, vegetables to plant in spring include collards, squash, pumpkins, okra, tomatoes, corn, radishes, peppers, cucumbers and watermelons. Spring flowers include lilies, zinnias, annuals, perennials, periwinkles, Cajun hibiscus and lantana cultivars.  “Remember, you’re not just cultivating something that’s appealing to the eye when you work in your yard -- you’re cultivating your health too,” Dr. Devillier said.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


Counseling Center Expands Services Each year hundreds of lives are lost... thousands are injured... and millions of dollars of property damage occur because of preventable recreational boating accidents on U.S. waterways. Wearing a life jacket is critical for boating safety. Recent statistics show approximately 70% of all fatal boating accident victims drowned. Approximately 90% of the victims who drowned were not wearing their personal flotation device (PFD or lifejacket). The statistics show over 400 lives could have been saved if they would have worn a life jacket. It’s simple, life jackets save lives.

The Safety Council of SWLA offers these tips for using a life jacket: ✖ Buy your own personal life jacket and use it. One size does not fit all. There may not be one available that fits to rent or borrow. ✖ Look at the label. It will provide weight and size information. ✖ Try it on to check the fit. Once the straps and buckles are secured, it should not slip over your head or come above your ears. ✖ Never use water toys in place of a U. S. Coast Guard approved life jacket. ✖ Throw away a life jacket if you find air leakage, mildew, or rot. ✖ Never alter a life jacket. It could lose its effectiveness. ✖ Check your life jackets yearly for flotation and fit.

1201 Ryan, Lake Charles Safe Line – 436-3354


Southwest Louisiana women experiencing depression during and after pregnancy can now benefit from a new program offered at The Counseling Center of Family of Youth. Depression during and after childbirth can be problematic for up to two years following the birth of a child. Sadness is not the only symptom; depression can also be felt as anxiety, emptiness, paranoia, mood swings or a variety of unfamiliar behaviors and feelings. In some cases, mothers feel unable to provide good care for their infants or their other children. Women experiencing depression before, during, or after pregnancy, as well as families and friends of these women can call The Counseling Center for help and information at 436-9533. Counselors will arrange confidential, no-charge, noobligation visits to help pregnant women and mothers overcome depression. The Counseling Center of Family & Youth has entered into a community partnership with Bristol-Myers Squibb, the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) Southwest Louisiana, the Louisiana Office of Mental Health and the Louisiana Office of Addictive Disorders to provide Southwest Louisiana women suffering from depression during and after pregnancy the treatment and tools needed to improve well-being and their lives. For more information about depression during and after pregnancy and how the professionals at The Counseling Center can help, contact Bill Williams, LPC, LMFT, at 337-436-9533 or

Stickell Receives Free LASIK Procedure Stephanie Stickell of Grand Lake received free LASIK surgery from ophthalmologist Dr. A.J. O’Byrne as part of a giveaway campaign sponsored by The Eye Clinic during Eye Care Month in January.. Stickell, who has worn glasses since age 6, had a pre-surgery prescription of more than -9.0 in each eye. LASIK, a minimally invasive outpatient procedure, reshapes the cornea using advanced laser technology. The Stephanie Stickell procedure usually takes less than 30 minutes. According to Dr. Byrne, those interested in LASIK surgery are often wrongly informed that they aren’t ideal candidates.“Those who are interested in LASIK need to make sure they get the opinion of someone who actually performs the procedure, which is only one in about 20 eye doctors. Otherwise, you may be misinformed,” Dr. O’Byrne said.“Even those who can’t undergo LASIK because of a thin cornea or high prescription are often candidates for other corrective procedures.” Stickell said the two greatest benefits to having proper vision are “being able to see when I wake up in the middle of the night, and being able to go swimming and see clearly at the same time.” With four locations and 13 doctors, The Eye Clinic is the region’s leading provider of comprehensive eye care. Physicians specialize in a range of ophthalmology services, including basic vision problems, LASIK laser vision correction, diabetic eye disease, macular degeneration and the latest techniques in cataract surgery.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Lake Charles Memorial Hospital Announces Several Upcoming Classes and Meetings for the Month of April They are: • La Leche League Lake Charles – A breastfeeding support group, La Leche League offers a series of meetings consisting of four classes that are helpful for pregnant moms and moms who are already nursing. Meetings are free and open to mothers and babies. For more information, call Courtney 217-8056, Amber 313-4303, or Tricia 477-7709. April meeting is 10-11:30 a.m. Thursday, April 2, at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital for Women. • Diabetes Support – 10 a.m. Tuesdays, April 7 and 21. For more information, call Diabetes Education at (337) 494-6425. • Community Blood Drive – 2-6 p.m. Mondays, April 13 and 27, Lake Charles Memorial Hospital, Oak Park Boulevard. • Coping with Cancer – For those newly diagnosed, undergoing treatment or who have completed treatment. Meeting noon Tuesday, April 21. For more information, call Rev. David DeWitt at (337) 802-1933. • Sisters Surviving Breast Cancer – For those newly diagnosed, undergoing

treatment or who have completed treatment. Meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 21, in Medical Office Building II Conference Room. For more information, call (337) 433-5817.

Hart Eye Center Offers Advanced Technology William B. Hart, MD, of Hart Eye Center is among the first 150 ophthalmologists in the United States and the only eye surgeon in Southwest Louisiana approved to utilize the TECNIS® Multifocal Intraocular Lens (IOL), the latest advancement in cataract surgery. The TECNIS® Multifocal IOL is the newest, state-of-the-art artificial lens utilized in cataract surgery to save and improve a patient’s vision by replacing the clouded natural lens. The TECNIS® Multifocal IOL can be used in cataract patients with presbyopia, and has been found to achieve clearer near vision and faster reading speeds than any other artificial lens. According to the lens developer, Abbott Medical Optics (formerly Advanced Medical Optics), nearly 9 out of 10 patients have reported that they have never needed to wear glasses again, after cataract surgery with TECNIS® Multifocal IOLs.

“Reader’s Choice Award for Best Hospice” – The Beaumont Enterprise

Harbor Hospice is a compassionate, patient-centered approach to medical care and support for people at the end of life and their families. It’s care focused on maintaining dignity, increasing quality of life, and providing comfort, including pain and symptom control. Harbor Hospice recognizes that every person’s experience will be different and the hospice team creates a plan of care according to the individual needs and wishes of each patient. Harbor Hospice staff members are available at all times, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It is the mission of Harbor Hospice staff to walk side-by-side with patients and offer support, not only for any physical symptoms, but for emotional and spiritual needs, as well. This support extends to family members, and Harbor Hospice helps them cope with their own unique emotional and spiritual concerns. Although the primary focus of Harbor Hospice is home care, there are times when caring for a loved one at home is simply not possible. When symptoms cannot be managed at home, or when families are having difficulty coping, Harbor Hospice of Lake Charles offers a wonderful alternative – The Harbor Hospice House. The Harbor Hospice House is a state-of-the-art in-patient facility designed with patient care and family needs in mind. Thirty private rooms offer hospice patients and their families all the comforts of home while providing round-the-clock, expert medical care.

We look forward to being of service to the community for many years to come as their Hospice care preferred provider. LAKE CHARLES 2501 E. Prien Lake Road 337.562.8620

April 2009

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Brighton Bridge Hospice provided ‘exceptional care for my mother and my family.’ They provided ‘extreme’ support for our family at all times, even after [Mother’s] death. Thank you so very, very much! We could never express enough how much we appreciate what you did for our Dad and us. Your help made a hard and sad circumstance easier. We will always remember your kindness. The Brighton Bridge ‘team’ we had was wonderful. We could not have asked for more caring people. If we had any questions, they were just a phone call away. We loved the way the family and patient were treated. I would most definitely recommend Brighton Bridge Hospice to others. I feel that Brighton Bridge Hospice did a wonderful job with my loved one. They kept her pain under control and tended to her every need. They also explained everything in detail and what we could expect. I felt only love and help from the staff. The Chaplain was very helpful. I thank everyone who was involved.

Proudly Serving Southwest Louisiana OUR MISSION Brighton Bridge Hospice exists to provide and promote the highest total care possible for people with advanced terminal illnesses such as: cancer, Alzheimer’s Disease, CVA, dementia, COPD, CHF, heart disease, pulmonary disease, renal disorders and AIDS. Also, to provide help and support to their families and other individuals important to their care. 24


Thrive Magazine for Better Living April 2009

by Erin K. Cormier

Alcoh l Intake Increases Cancer Risk for Women

New Study Finds this Includes Low-to-Moderate Consumption

For years, red wine has been the fair-haired child of the spirits family. When used in moderation, it’s been found to prevent blood clots, contribute to heart healthiness, reduce the risk of kidney stone formation and ease hypertension.

Louisiana residents. In recent findings of the National Survey of Drug Use and Health, 47 percent of Louisianans reported having an alcoholic beverage in the past 30 days.

Although it seems that red wine holds one of many keys to preventative health, a recent study by the University of Oxford has found that even one glass per day could make women more susceptible to certain cancers. In the “Million Women Study,” researchers tracked cancer incidence and alcohol use in more than 1 million women and found that women who drank were at increased risk to develop cancers of the esophagus, rectum, liver, breast and throat. Although the risk increased with the number of drinks consumed, the cancer risk was apparent even among women with low-to-moderate consumption, according to the study. The type of alcohol consumed didn’t seem to have an effect on the study either way.

Dr. Goolsby said that alcohol consumption should be kept a minimum. In addition to the newfound cancer risks, increased alcohol use can increase risks of numerous other adverse health conditions, including heart disease, ulcers and osteoporosis.

Researchers estimated that alcohol accounts annually for about 11 percent of all breast cancers, 22 percent of liver cancers and 25 percent of cancers of the oral cavity, pharynx, esophagus and larynx, in the United Kingdom. Not surprisingly, women who also smoked were at an even higher risk. “This study is yet another illustration of how lifestyle choices can have adverse health effects, particularly as related to cancer,” said Medical Oncologist/ Hematologist Henry J. Goolsby, III, MD, with Lake Charles Medical and Surgical Clinic.“New studies are constantly being conducted with findings showing us how better lifestyle choices lead to optimal health.” According to Dr. Goolsby, the Oxford study should be of particular interest to April 2009

“There are several other things women can do, in addition to eliminating alcohol, that can improve their preventative health. This includes regular exercise, eating a healthy diet, and maintaining a healthy weight,” Dr. Goolsby said.“Another extremely important aspect of preventative health is early screening. Both women and men should have screenings at least once a year to keep their health in check. It’s a small investment of time for what could ultimately become a lifesaving event. Unfortunately, many people overlook it.” According to Dr. Goolsby, the local region has a higher incidence of cancer fatalities than other parts of the country, even though the overall rates of cancer are comparable to the rest of the nation. “This is largely because people don’t get screened early and often,” Dr. Goolsby said.“The later cancer illness is detected, the more difficult it is to treat successfully.” Dr. Goolsby said regular screenings are also vital to detecting other health conditions, such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, and osteoporosis. “Lifestyle choices play a hugely significant role in our health. Getting screened, or not, should be considered one of those lifestyle choices we make.”

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


Dave Evans, owner of Luna Bar and Grill, taps every creative faucet in honor of Mother Earth. The founder of Lake Charles’ first EarthFest downtown last year, Evans was determined to make a bigger bang in 2009. With visions of packed crowds between the Broad and Division streets, Evans spent months booking bands, luring vendors and rallying like-minded groups.

EarthFest 2009

The result: EarthFest 2009, a two-day downtown celebration featuring flea market vendors, a 5K run, hybrid car presentations, nature demonstrations, massage therapists, performances by the McNeese Little Big Band, and live music from Houston, Austin and Lake Charles. The festival will begin downtown at 6 p.m. Friday, April 17, and continue from noon Saturday, April 18. Evans teamed with the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury for the celebration, Billy Navarre for the hybrid cars, Sam Houston Jones State Park for the nature demonstrations, and the Lake Area Runners for the 5K run, for which more than 300 people are already registered.

“We want it to be 20 times bigger than last year. In 2008, we had about 350 people downtown. This year, we have that many folks signed up for the 5K run alone,” Evans said.“We should all show our love for Mother Earth and try to be as green as possible. This festival is going to encourage people to do that. If I had it my way, we would recycle everything humanely possible.”

features vendors, Music, and 5K Marathon

Evans said the daylong Saturday festival will be family-oriented, while the night-time celebration is better suited for adults. The 5K run will begin at 3 p.m. The McNeese Little Big Band, a jazz ensemble, will perform upon their return around 4 p.m., kicking off the live music for the evening. For more information on EarthFest 2009, contact Luna Bar and Grill at 494-5862.

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

by Erin K. Cormier

Termites Aren’t the Only Pests that Swarm in Spring


lthough homeowners are fearful of the winged wood-eating termite, the warm air of spring also means mating season for another destructive pest: The carpenter ant. Left to their own devices, these little insects are able to wreak havoc on wood and have been known to burrow their way into moisturedamaged walls and into unattended houses.

803 W. McNeese Street, Lake Charles, LA 70605


“Carpenter ants can damage a home just like a termite can. Fortunately, they are easier to detect and their colonies typically make themselves known before too much damage is done,” said Robert Soileau, Manager of J&J Exterminating in Lake Charles, The typical carpenter ant is large and black with a slender waist and is sometimes confused for a wasp. Unlike wasps, however, carpenter ants have distinctly elbowed antennae. When aggravated, they will likely sting or bite. Unlike the termite, carpenter ants don’t feed on wood and don’t need it to survive, according to Soileau. Their destruction is based on practicalities – they need to burrow into the wood in order to start their colony. This typically happens in spring, when the mated queen is searching for a place to lay her eggs.“Once the colony is established, worker ants have to leave the nest in order to search for food. That is what makes them vulnerable,” Soileau said.“Once they start leaving the nest, they are easy to detect. They trail from the nest to the outdoors and back.” Soileau says the most common site of carpenter ant activity in our region is in oak trees. “Oak trees have a lot of knots and hollow spots. These areas hold moisture which softens the wood, providing the ideal environment for the carpenter ant nests. Activity starts at the nest site and spreads from there, as the colony grows, slowly encompassing more and more of the surrounding yard. If they aren’t stopped, growth will continue and the colony will bud, forming sub-colonies. It is at this stage that these ants enter a home or business and become a more costly threat.” Home or business owners who notice carpenter ants around their structures should contact an exterminator immediately for an inspection, according to Soileau. “Inspection is a big key to containing these pests before structural damage occurs. Inspection is best done in late evening when movement is at its highest level. We can follow the movement back to the main colony. This is the key to successful eradication of carpenter ants – finding and treatment main colony. Once that location is identified, we apply localized spot treatment, which is the most effective way to eliminate the problem. However, since these pests are so common in our region, and they migrate, regular service may be needed to prevent new infestation.” For more information on carpenter ants or other spring pests, call J&J Exterminating at 474-7377. April 2009

Avoid the Summer Slide! “On average, students lose approximately 2.6 months of grade level equivalency in mathematical computation skills over the summer months.” —Center for Summer Learning, Johns Hopkins University (Cooper, 1996)

mathnasium is currently enrolling for “Summer workouts.” • Flexible programs prepare students for the new school year • Two 60 minute sessions per week • Summer hours 1pm–7pm, Monday–Thursday • Summer schedule June 1–August 13

Choose from these programs: Jump StarterS • New Pre-K/1st grade program (Call for more information) • Jumpstart Upper Elementary • Jumpstart Middle School

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

2744 Country Club road Lake Charles, La 70605 Next to Albertson’s

CaLL 337-478-0550


registration through may 18.


This monthly series follows Leah and James Verret as they experience the surprises and challenges of pregnancy, the second time around.

by Erin K. Cormier

Month Five:

Getting Big Brother Ready

Photo by Ben Verret

For 2-year-old Jack Verret, there are two possible explanations for the sudden growth of his mother’s midsection: It’s either a baby or a basketball. Either way, “Jack is definitely noticing it,” his mother, Leah, said. “When I rock with him, he will usually put his hand on my belly.” Leah and her husband James are in the throes of an advancing pregnancy. James is in the process of closing out the garage to make room for the nursery. Leah suffers from occasional heartburn and has to watch what she eats. They are bouncing baby names off each other (for now, the preferences are Madison Olivia or Lucas Warren). And in the midst of all these lifechanging preparations is their toddler, their only child – until summer, at least. Jack, who relishes in the exclusivity of his parents’ attention, has a few life-changing events of his own to tackle. Not only is he trying his best to comprehend the concept of a baby growing inside his mother, he’s also potty-training. “I am not sure how to prepare mentally because with Jack, I could focus all my attention on him. This time around, I will have to care for a newborn while still giving Jack the attention he needs,” Leah said. “I am most worried about Jack feeling left out. James and I will have to work out a schedule that works for us. It will be interesting at first.” Leah’s obstetrician, Dr. Walter Guth of OBG-1 in Lake Charles, has seen many expectant parents struggle with the challenges of welcoming a newborn while handling a toddler. According to Dr. Guth, the key is to prepare the older sibling as much as possible. “Obviously there is a limit to what a 2-yearold understands, but it’s important to talk about what he or she should expect, and reiterate it as much as possible. Make sure the older sibling understands what the new baby will mean – not just for them, but for the family,” Dr. Guth said.


Two-year-olds may not comprehend what having a “new baby” means, according to Dr. Guth. Even though it seems common knowledge that babies cry a lot, need constant diaper changes, and require continual attention, these things may not be immediately apparent to a toddler, Dr. Guth said. “Parents should explain these things in advance and make sure the older sibling knows that babies aren’t immediate playmates.” He also suggested that parents involve older siblings as much as possible by having them sing to the baby or help with diaper changes. “We frequently talk to Jack about mommy’s belly, so I think he understands what’s going on,” James said. Meanwhile, the Verrets have no idea if Jack will welcome a brother or a sister – they have elected not to find out the gender of the baby. “The experience will be even more exciting when the baby is born and we find out then,” James said. “We have not been tempted at all to find out.” The fifth month is a time of milestones for the Verret’s second baby, according to Dr. Guth. Between 21 and 25 weeks, babies develop fingernails and eyelashes, their nostrils open, and air sacs start to develop in the lungs. By now, the Verret’s baby is about a foot long and weighs about 1 ½ pounds.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

“Most expecting parents enjoy the second trimester more than any other point in the pregnancy. It’s typically during this time that parents hear the heartbeat for the first time and feel the baby move around. Comfort becomes more challenging as the pregnancy advances, but the fifth month is usually quite comfortable,” Dr. Guth said. “During this time, mothers may also feel a sudden burst of energy as they leave behind the struggles of the first trimester. This is where the old Photo by Ben Verret wives’ tale of ‘nesting’ comes into play. As the mother feels more mobile and energetic, she tends to get more things done that she didn’t have the energy for earlier in the pregnancy.”

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Other wives’ tales involve gender “guessing games,” such as determining whether mom is having a boy or a girl based on how the belly is carried, whether or not a stringed pen drifts horizontally or vertically over the baby, or what kind of foods she craves. “Although these games can be fun, they should never be considered fool-proof. When a woman is pregnant, there are really only two ways to find out if the baby is a boy or a girl – have an ultrasound or have the baby,” Dr. Guth said.

April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


I’m not a pop-culture snob when it comes to television, but there are a few shows that get my remote clicking to the next channel faster than you can say Jack Robinson. For instance, any show that has a group of women competing for the love of a self-absorbed has-been celebrity; follows the lives of the rich and not-so-famous, especially if the lives being followed belong to spoiled 16-year-olds; or brings together former high school classmates so they can relive the glory days of the 80s. But of all the shows produced on television today, there is one that I usually refuse to watch, under any circumstances, and that’s “Animal Cops.” If you’re an animal lover like me, you probably understand why. It’s a well-done show and an important one, but it can be a rough thirty minutes for the tender-hearted. The ASPCA cops should be commended for being able to survive each of their cruelty visits, because I can hardly survive, and I’m not even there.

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To overcome a contagious case of cynicism in a distressing world, I remind myself of two things: First, there are far more good people in the world than bad. I know this from my own little world, Pollyanna or not. The vast majority of the people I know are decent and compassionate. Second, if the awful things we hear about on the news were normal and commonplace, it wouldn’t be on the news in the first place.

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Also on this episode was a dog afflicted with a severe case of mange. The poor dog was affected on every part of his body, from the tips of his droopy ears to the tips of each paw. The owners, who claimed that didn’t have enough money for a vet, tried to treat him with home remedies, which aggravated the condition. In the end, the dog was in so much untreatable pain that he had to be euthanized. There are times when I prefer to be oblivious to these things. I want to keep my world peaceful, cheery and insulated, so I control what I can – some nights I’ll watch “The Cosby Show” instead of CNN Headline News, or Comedy Central instead of Anderson Cooper. But at the end of the day, we can’t bury our heads in the sand and play Pollyanna, because with every passing minute, people do things that we don’t understand for reasons that make no sense.

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The other night, however,“Animal Cops” reeled me in. The episode featured a young horse whose harness had become embedded in its head, causing an obvious infection. The horse’s skin was rotting around the leather – not exactly something that goes unnoticed. The owner admitted there was a problem but was infuriatingly nonchalant about it. When the ASPCA officer told him to get the horse to the veterinarian by eight-thirty the following morning, the owner asked if he could put it off a little longer. Ultimately the horse arrived and the harness was cut from its head; the vet estimated that it had been left on the horse for at least several months, allowing the skin to grow over it.

The most vulnerable members of society – whether it’s animals, children, or the elderly – are, in most cases, treated with love and kindness. That’s why it jostles our peaceful worlds when we are reminded that there are many who suffer from the exception rather than the rule. Erin K. Cormier is a board member of the local chapter of the Humane Society of Louisiana. Email her at erin@

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Shift the Challenges of

Working Odd Hours

Shift work is a way of life for thousands of health care, industrial, gaming and retail employees across the country. Southwest Louisiana residents know this routine all too well. These jobs are the foundation of our economy. But, the stress shift work places on the body shouldn’t be ignored. The good news is that awareness of the potential pitfalls can help workers and supervisors create a game plan to minimize the threats to health and safety. Larry DeRoussel with Lake Area Industry Alliance has been in the industrial field for 43 years. As a manager at Basel, then as executive director of LAIA, he has seen first-hand the challenges presented by shift work.“Some employees can handle it and some can’t,” he explained.“In fact, some people thrive on it; they enjoy the solitude of working at night, but others have trouble settling into that routine.”

This ability to adapt is one of the keys to success for shift workers. Safety experts say that some workers are physiologically better adapted to shift work than others. Those who are less well adapted will be more susceptible to the negative consequences of shift work and will have higher rates of fatigue and illness. DeRoussel agrees.“For many employees, their schedule rotates between working days and then working nights so there isn’t really a set routine. Most workers make adjustments and go on to work many years on varied schedules, but making those adjustments in a key in their longevity on the job, enjoying what they do and having good quality of life.”

work affects these hormones and their imbalance results in an increased risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.”

Dr. Thomas urged caution when absorbing the potential concerns of shift work. “Just because we know shift workers are more susceptible to a health problem doesn’t mean you or your loved one is in danger. It just means it’s something that should be addressed to avoid possible problems. Doctors, policemen, pilots – there are many types of occupations that have to deal with working odd hours. It’s just one of those things that you need to be aware of if you do work varying shifts.” Exercise is one of the best preventive measures when it comes to disease, but it’s also a huge boost for shift workers.“Getting the heart rate up through exercise is one of the best ways to combat those weight-affecting hormones. Consistent exercise helps keep them at a moderate level. It also helps to fatigue the body, which leads to getting good quality rest,” said Laura Domaigne, fitness director at the Sports Club of Graywood.“If your job allows, work some activity into your shift. Walk instead of using the phone, do some jumping-jacks or stretches during your break, even small movements make a difference. And, the activity helps keep you alert while on the job.” Studies show that exercise is beneficial to promoting the length of time you stay in deep sleep, where the body repairs itself. This deep sleep allows some parts of the brain to rejuvenate in order to function fully during hours you’re awake.

Obviously, one of the more significant concerns is for shift workers is fatigue. Fundamentally, the body is designed to sleep at night and work during the day. DeRoussel said it’s possible to train the body to get rest at irregular intervals, and suggested these ideas: • use light-blocking drapes to keep her tine Fis is r h C y the room dark b • avoid eating heavy or greasy meals before trying to sleep • use a fan to provide “white noise” or use earplugs so that daytime sounds in the house or neighborhood won’t wake you

“Maintaining alertness is a basic element on the job, but it has even more significance for shift workers,” said Joni Fontenot, spokesperson with the Safety Council of Southwest Louisiana.“People who work the night shift often have to be extra attentive, because in some fields the activity level is lower.” Fontenot said most places of work have standards in place to protect the health and stamina of their employees.“Watching the amount of overtime worked, allowing time in the schedule to recuperate between shift changes and reducing the number of required meetings employees must attend on their days off are ways a company can minimize the health and psychological stress placed on employees.”

“Shift workers need to be alert, focused and on task while they’re working; to do that, they have to get enough sleep, eat well and keep safety in mind,” DeRoussel said. In addition to sleep troubles, studies show that shift workers have a higher incidence of heart disease, diabetes and obesity. Health experts believe it’s due to hormonal and metabolic changes. Family medicine physician Ken Thomas said that the affect on weight can cause the other concerns.“Hormones like leptin, insulin and cortisol play a big role in weight control. Shift April 2009

Working a job that requires shift work doesn’t have to lead to health problems. It can be what propels you to live a healthy lifestyle. Being mindful of what’s eaten, getting regular exercise and putting into place a few safeguards to adjust to the changing work schedule can give shift workers the advantage they need to do well both on and off the clock. Thrive Magazine for Better Living


Monday–Saturday 10am–7pm Sunday 1pm–6pm

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Wanna Get Fit?

First, Get Personal


hen we decide to get in shape and lead healthier lifestyles, our excitement often leads us down a determined path of strenuous exercise, immediate strict dieting and cardio workouts. The path usually burns out quickly, leaving us dejected, defeated and unmotivated. In worst-case scenarios, our muscles ache, our energy is shot and we decide that fitness isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. If you find yourself at a fitness crossroads, the first step you take should be toward a Fitness Specialist. “Fitness Specialists are vital to any fitness routine,” said Carl Comeaux, an Exercise Physiologist with Live Fit 7 Fitness Training in Lake Charles. “Every individual is different and unique, and their fitness routine should reflect that. New clients that meet with a LiveFIT7 Fitness Specialist go through a thorough assessment examining their muscle weaknesses and imbalances, and body composition. Then, the fitness specialist develops a customdesigned comprehensive plan including cardiovascular conditioning, lower body, upper body, and core muscle conditioning, nutrition planning, lifestyle coaching and stretching. After eight weeks, the client will go through the thorough assessment again to measure their success. It is very rewarding to see the changes through the weeks; it is amazing how the client transforms from stressed, tired, or unconfident to feeling a sense of achievement, full of energy, and proud.” Experienced, certified fitness specialists also have priceless knowledge about fitness, nutrition and health and can serve as a touchstone of knowledge, especially for a beginner. There are added benefits in addition to the practical aspects of personal training, as well, such as motivational support and technical support.

If you decide to seek the assistance of a certified Fitness Specialist, Comeaux gave these suggestions: • Make sure your Fitness Specialist has a high degree of knowledge in their field, demonstrate expertise, and have a personality that is compatible with yours to serve as your fitness mentor. An efficient Fitness Specialist will spend an adequate amount of time with you before you ever step on a machine discussing your smart goals, obstacles and strategies, and your fitness wish list. • Tell your Fitness Specialist about illnesses or past injuries. If you’re diabetic, for example, this could have an effect on your regimen. Your Fitness Specialist should consult with your doctor to get their approval and for them to list any limitations you might have before your Fitness Specialist designs a fitness routine. If he or she is not knowledgeable about your condition and does not consult with your doctor before customizing your fitness program, consider someone else. • Make sure the fitness program reflects your expectations and that the Fitness Specialist do thorough assessments to measure progressions, which are huge accomplishments. Carl Comeaux has a master’s degree in exercise physiology from McNeese State University and earned his National Personal Training certification from the Cooper Institute. For more information on customized fitness training for one-on-one, couple, or small groups, contact Comeaux at Live Fit 7 Fitness Training at (337)853-2122 or email at

“Fitness specialists shouldn’t tell someone how to use a certain machine or how long to walk on the treadmill, then walk away. In addition to a customized fitness plan, certified fitness specialists should offer motivational support. The client needs to know that someone out there believes in what they’re doing and expects them to hit their S.M.A.R.T. goals –Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Reward-based and is completed in certain Time frame. These goals are determined through a close relationship between trainer and client,” Comeaux said. Technical support is also critical. According to Comeaux, Fitness Specialists instruct clients on proper form and various exercise progressions which, if done incorrectly, could become counterproductive and even result in pain or injury.

April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


Coming to America tells the story of local residents who left their native country to make a new home in the United States. Watch for a new story each issue. To nominate someone for this series, send a brief description to:

by Erin K. Cormier

Mukesh Wagle: The search for a stellar education


or a man who loves festivals, Louisiana would seem to be the ideal place. Louisiana is known for its parties and is often considered the festival center of America. But even Mardi Gras and Contraband Days don’t compare to the celebrations of the Nepalese capital of Kathmandu, according to Mukesh Wagle. Mukesh, 20, a native of Kathmandu, moved to Lake Charles in 2006 to study computer science and mathematics at McNeese State University. He’s had time to recover from his initial homesickness, but admits that he misses the festivals of his native country, which include Fagun Parunima, a week-long ancient Hindu festival that celebrates the feast of colors; Mata Tirtha Aunsi, which falls on the new moon; Tihar, the beloved festival of lights; and, most importantly, Dasain, the largest and most celebrated festival in Nepal. “Almost all of the festivals in Nepal are religiously motivated, like Dasain. The festival lasts two weeks. Everyone celebrates. The people from the villages come into the city during this time,” Mukesh said. “It’s almost similar to Mardi Gras. Almost.” Other than his craving for a grand Nepali celebration, Wagle says he has become accustomed to American life. His motivation for coming to the U.S. was to obtain a solid education in the field of computer science and mathematics; Nepal, with an average literacy rate of less than 50 percent, was not an ideal place to learn about advanced technology. During his 8,500-mile journey from South Asia to America, he didn’t expect much of a culture shock, but soon after he arrived in Lake Charles, he discovered that there were two things that would take some adjustment: the food and the weather. “The food is very different here and there was nowhere I could get the food I liked, with the spices we use in Nepal. I’m used to it now, but at first, I didn’t like any of the food. My favorite now is gumbo, because it reminds me of some dishes we cook at home. Not exactly the same, but similar,” Wagle said. “Also, the weather was very different. The first time I walked outside, I felt the humidity on my skin. I wasn’t used to that. We don’t have humidity in Nepal. It gets hot, but it’s never humid.” Wagle said it’s a misconception that weather in Nepal is cold and snowy year-round. The country, bordered to the north by the Himalayas, actually


Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

experiences predictable and pleasant temperatures, with four climactic seasons. Although winter temperatures are near freezing, it usually reaches the high 80s in the summer. Most of the snowfall is limited to the mountain range, which is home to legendary Mt. Everest.

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Wagle admits that most of the people he’s met have trouble visualizing Nepal on a map, but all of them know Mt. Everest and most have heard of Kathmandu, the capital.

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“I can see Mt. Everest from my city if I climb to a high altitude, but it’s hard to pick Mt. Everest out of the mountain range. From that view, all the mountains look the same,” Wagle said. China sits on the other side of the Himalayas, while the flat river plain of the Ganges sits to the south, bordering India. Even though the entire country is only slightly larger than Arkansas, its terrain is varied, with its lowest point at 70 meters and its highest, Mt. Everest, at 8,850 meters.

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Wagle, who had never been to the U.S. before he moved to Lake Charles, said hurricanes are non-existent in his landlocked country. He said evacuating for Hurricanes Ike and Gustav “was a new and interesting experience … but at least we got to see Dallas.” Wagle’s younger brother followed in his footsteps and is also a current student at McNeese. Wagle, a senior, received a full scholarship from the Honors College and is currently part of a NASAfunded physics research team led by Dr. Giovanni Santostasi, a McNeese physics professor. After graduation, Wagle plans to enroll in graduate school and remain in the U.S.

April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


10 Ways to Renew y u Do some Spring Cleaning on your look, and go from Blah toWOW!

1 – GET a HAIRCUT One of the simplest and most dramatic ways to update, modernize or change your look is to get a haircut and color. If your hair is long and straight, consider chopping off several layers. Got lots of curls? Go straight instead. If you’re a brunette, spice things up with light highlights.

Anna typically wears minimal makeup, with her hair in a ponytail.

With her new haircut and makeup, Anna takes it a step further with glasses – one of the easiest ways to dramatically change your look.

“There’s a hairstyle out there for every person. There are cuts that look modern and require very little preparation and there are cuts that are stylish that take more effort. Whatever your personality, there’s a hairstyle that suits it,” said Wendy White McCown, owner of Signatures Salon on West McNeese Street.


She said many men and women get comfortable with a single hairstyle and have trouble letting go of it, but if you keep the same haircut for years, you will quickly look dated and, even worse, old. “It’s best if your hair doesn’t fit into a certain generation, especially if that generation is the seventies or eighties. When your hair is modern and contemporary, you look modern and contemporary, instead of like someone who hasn’t updated their hairstyle in a while,” McCown said. “If people notice your hair, you want it to be for the right reasons.”

way to put it,” said Laura Dougherty, Fitness Director at the Sports Club at Graywood. “Living a healthy lifestyle gives you more energy, keeps you more focused, and most importantly, gives you a big self-esteem boost. It’s not just about looking slim and trim. It’s about feeling good. When you start leading a new lifestyle and start to see results in mind, body and soul, you have a great feeling of accomplishment. Exercising improves your health and well-being. The superficial aspects are a perk of making the commitment of a healthier lifestyle.”

According to McCown, if you decide to color your hair, it’s best to go professional rather than rely on athome products. Take-home products can damage the hair and the color can be difficult to control, whereas as a hair professional mixes a precise color in the salon with high-quality products. “I know it’s cheaper to buy over-the-counter color, but a professional application will outdo a home application every time,” McCown said. “Besides, you wear your hair every day. Why not go that extra mile to make sure it looks good?”

The hardest part is getting started. Humans are creatures of habit, and it can be challenging to add new activities to our routines, especially when those activities are diet and exercise. One way to overcome to challenge of getting in step with your health is to view it as a lifestyle change, rather than laborious tasks that need to be completed. “Think of all the good things you’re doing for your body, and how your smart choices will benefit you and your family,” Dougherty said.

2 – GET FIT For most people, the primary motivation for getting fit is to lose weight. It’s no secret that weight loss leads to trimmer waists, flatter bellies, and smaller pant sizes. But there’s more to healthy living than what shows on the weight scale. “When you eat better and you exercise, you feel better. There’s no simpler

do they have the knowledge to maximize your fitness experience, they also serve as motivators. If maximized beauty is your main concern, Dougherty said to consider the various ways that exercise can improve your looks, in addition to the obvious benefit of getting slim. “Your weight has an effect on your skin – weight gain can lead to stretch marks or breakouts, while weight loss can lead to healthier, clearer skin, for example,” Dougherty said. The improved circulation triggered by exercise has several other benefits, as well, she said: Improved skin tone, which prevents wrinkles and sagging; shinier, healthier hair; brighter and clearer eyes; and muscle definition.


If you want to turn a ho-hum outfit into snazzy threads, you need to learn how to accessorize, according to Becky Nicholas of Accessory Zone. If your jewelry box is outdated or you only have a few pieces to work with, Once you decide to make don’t worry – you that lifestyle change, take it Accessories, such as these can couple old slow. If you try too much at layered necklaces, can reflect pieces with new once, your interest will wane your personality. ones. “It’s not about quickly. Instead of enrolling being matchyin five fitness classes per week, take matchy anymore,” Nicholas said. one or two and work your way up. “Before, we were taught that all Hire a fitness trainer to help guide our accessories had to match you through the process – not only perfectly and the colors had to

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

be exact. Now, it’s all about accents and contrasts, like bold necklaces with simple outfits. You don’t want to match big prints with big jewelry. You want it all to contrast and accent.” To beef up your accessory drawer, select multi-colored items. That way, you can wear it with several different tops. A necklace with blue, red, green and gold, for example, could be worn with any solid-colored shirt of the same color. There’s more to accessories than kicking your outfit up a notch, Nicholas said. Accessories also reflect your personality and make you feel comfortable in what you’re wearing. “When you look good, you feel good. Simple as that,” Nicholas said. “From necklaces to shoes and hats and purses, you can make your outfit fit your personality and you can feel great about what you’re wearing in the process.”

4 – GET GLASSES Gone are the days of the huge, plastic, glass-bottle glasses that dominated your face and reached from your eyebrows to your cheekbones. These days, eyeglasses are hip and stylish. From Tina Fey to Johnny Depp, the cool kids on the playground are now wearing glasses. According to Doris Oeder, an optician with Optics Unlimited at The Eye Clinic, “eyeglasses have become an accessory, just like shoes or bags.” One reason, she said, is that there are so many different styles available, which can frame any kind of face. It’s also possible to thin the lenses so even those with an unfavorable prescription can benefit from today’s hippest accessory. According to the Vision Council of America, there are three keys to choosing the correct eyeglass frame April 2009

for your face shape. First, the frame shape should contrast with the face shape. Second, the frame size should be in scale with the face size, and third, eyewear should repeat your personal best feature – blue frames for blue eyes, for example. “If you have a round face, it’s best to try angular, narrow eyeglasses that lengthen the face. For an oval, the frames should be at least as wide as the broadest part of the face, while those with a square shape should consider narrow frame styles that soften the angles,” Oeder said. When you decide to go optical, don’t be afraid to ask an optics consultant for help. According to Oeder, it can take several fittings to find the ideal frames for your face, especially if you aren’t used to wearing glasses.

jeans. “When you decide to buy jeans, make sure you’re in the mood for jean-shopping, because you might try on 20 pair before you find the right pair for you.” Once you have your staples, you Erinto Cormier areby ready on your updated wardrobe, Vezinot said. Use accessories and shoes to dress up or dress down your outfits, and make sure you buy the appropriate size. “Standard sizing doesn’t really exist anymore, which can really mess with your head, especially if you’re a woman and you place a lot of importance on that size number. You can’t walk into a store and say, ‘I’m a 10,’ and expect that it will fit anymore. Sizes vary, so you have to be open-minded when you’re shopping. You

If you already wear glasses and want to change your look, there’s a simple solution, according to Oeder. “Consider contacts or LASIK. Just as eyeglasses can change the face of someone who doesn’t typically wear any, the loss of eyeglasses for a longtime wearer can also have a profound effect,” she said. “If you really want to change it up, get color contacts.”

5 – GET an UPDATED WARDROBE Whether you’re a man or a woman, there is no great secret to developing a modern wardrobe. Start with the staples – a few crisp, white shirts, at least one pair of nice black pants, a fine set of black shoes and a pair nice-fitting jeans – and work on from there. Once you’ve got those key pieces in the closet, the rest is history. Stacey Vezinot of Stacey’s Armoire said black wardrobe pieces are vital for any closet. “Black is very versatile, it’s always easy to find a pair of black shoes. No matter what style the shoe is, you can guarantee it comes in black,” she said, adding that another must-have for women during spring are various colored camisoles, which also work well with black. “Black is great for spring because it goes with just about any color, so you can pop it with something bright, like a turquoise or pink camisole.” Also vital, for men and women: A good pair of Thrive Magazine for Better Living

might be a size 16 in one store and a 10 in another, but that’s okay, as long as your outfit looks good and you’re comfortable.” If you fall in love with an outfit but it doesn’t quite fit, “don’t be afraid of alterations,” Vezinot said. Vezinot, who offers alterations in her store, said outfit refinements ultimately improve the look of the ensemble because it’s made to fit your body. The key, she said, is to find someone who does alterations well and at a reasonable price.

6 – GET a MANICURE Men and women alike can benefit from the talent of a skilled manicurist. Hands are one of our most visible features, and a set of dirty and cracked fingernails can quickly overshadow a well-tailored business suit, just as dry and rough hands can destroy even the strongest handshake.

7 – GET your TEETH BLEACHED The benefits of having pearly teeth are obvious: To have a whiter smile. Why is it important? Medically speaking, whiter teeth are no stronger than yellowed, but physically speaking, a row of white teeth can brighten a smile in ways you probably don’t realize. Both men and women can bring their smile to a higher plane by having their teeth professionally bleached or conducting at-home remedies. There are many reasons that our teeth yellow as we get older, the most obvious being coffee and cigarettes. But those aren’t the only two culprits. The simple act of aging can have adverse effects on our enamel, thanks to dark pigments in foods and drinks, consumption of too much dairy, and even genetics.

A white shirt and nice pair of black pants are essential to any wardrobe, according to Stacey Vezinot of Stacey’s Armoire.

Continued on next page.


Our teeth, like our hands, are a very visible feature, which is why thousands of consumers opt to have them bleached every year. As with any procedure, however, there are potential side effects. Make sure you are fully informed so you can decide if you want a professional or at-home treatment.

8 – GET a new MAKEUP ROUTINE For women, a make-up routine can become like a security blanket. After years of relying on Earth

highlight your best features and accent your wardrobe. According to esthetician and make-up artist Heather Babineaux, the key is to look as natural as possible while accentuating your best features. Plums work best with green-eyed dark brunettes, for example, while emerald green might be ideal for a green-eyed gal with auburn hair.

feature, you couldn’t do much better than your eyes.

10 – GET your EYEBROWS SHAPED According to Leann Widcamp at the Aesthetics Center of Southwest Louisiana, eyebrows are probably the most underestimated feature on a person’s face. Whether you’re male or female, having your eyebrows

Knowing your skin tone and understanding which colors work best with your features is the first step to determining your make-up color palette. Once you have that palette, don’t feel limited to only one or two colors. Explore based on what you’re wearing, what time of day it is, and what type of event you’ll be attending.

For men, grooming the eyebrows may be more important than actually shaping them, but for women, “shaping is essential, particularly if it’s done by a professional. I don’t know many women who don’t have to do some kind of maintenance on their eyebrows.”

9 – GET EYELASH EXTENSIONS Want to dress up your features? Try colors you’ve never used before. Here, esthetician and make-up artist Heather Babineaux uses plum make-up on Anna, who is faithful to earth tones.

tones or plums, it can be difficult to broaden your color array, but changing your make-up routine can

instant, become more noticeable. Your face will appear clean and polished,” Widcamp said. “Eyebrows go unnoticed most of the time, but provide such balance, or imbalance, to your face. After your eyebrows are shaped, people may notice that you look better, younger, and healthier, even though they can’t pinpoint exactly why.”

groomed can make a profound difference on the rest of your facial features.

What better way to draw attention to your eyes than professional eyelash extensions? There are fewer features less noticeable than our eyes – for many, it’s the first thing they notice. Our eyes are typically the primary focus during a conversation. If you had to dress up only one facial

“Shaping your eyebrows is, without of a doubt, one of the most dramatic ways to change the way your face looks. If your eyebrows are adequately shaped, your eyes would look fresher and, in an

Your Money Matters... Just ask “Pepe”

For Mother Nature, spring is a time for blossoming rebirth and beautiful changes. But why limit it to nature? After a fall and winter hibernation for your look and style, it’s time to spring into a new stage of your life.

by Erin K. Cormier

(337) 312-7040

4440 Nelson Rd., Lake Charles


What is the Dow Jones Industrial Average? ANSWER:

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is an index that shows us how the stocks of the United States' largest publicly held companies have traded. It is only one of many different types of averages. With the Dow, the average is computed using the stock prices of 30 companies, including IBM, American Express, ExxonMobil, DuPont, and JPMorgan Chase. When the Dow was first created, the 30 companies were largely industrial, hence the term "Industrial Average."

To learn more about managing your investments wisely, call Mallard Investments at (337) 312-7040. Have an investment question? Send it to Securities are offered by, and Investment Consultants are registered with UVEST Financial Services, member FINRA/SIPC. UVEST and Mallard Investments are independent entities.

Not FDIC Insured


Not Bank Guaranteed

May Lose Value

ThriveMagazine Magazine Better Living Thrive forfor Better Living

J.A. “Pepe” Vasquez


August 2008 April 2009

A Heartfelt Screening for Women CHRISTUS St. Patrick Regional Heart Center invites you to A Heartfelt Screening

for Women – a comprehensive heart screening where you’ll learn about warning signs and risk factors for heart disease that can play an active role in keeping your heart healthy. screenings are age specific and based on risks. it will last approximately one hour and will include the following: • Complete patient medical history • Complete family history • Physical exam • Blood pressure testing

The cost is $75; cash, check and credit cards are accepted. For members of the Women’s health network, the cost is only $50 $50.

Call 491-7577 to sChedule your sCreening.

• Dietary screening (height, weight, BMI) • Labs (total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, triglycerides, blood sugar) – 4-hr fast required • EKG • Framingham Assessment – predicts risks for coronary event

April 2009

Women’s Health Network

711 Dr. Michael DeBakey Drive

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


by Kristy Armand

Becoming Fluent in

Cough Language

Having a child leads to the development of a unique set of unexpected – but extremely useful – skills. You’ve probably heard of the “eyes in the back of the head” skill, the “never-ending patience” skill and the ability “always know when a child is lying.” Not as well known is the ability to hear and translate the meaning of the childhood cough. It’s a skill that can’t be learned from any parenting book, but only acquired and honed through grueling hours of on-the-job training. “Parents typically do become very adept at interpreting the type of cough their child has,” says Luis Apellaniz, MD, pediatrician in Jennings. “Coughs are one of the most frequent symptoms of childhood illness. Different conditions cause different types of cough sounds. And although they can sound awful at times, most are not a symptom of anything dangerous. Having a basic understanding of what the different sounds may mean, can help a parent know the best way to handle their child’s cough.” Dr. Apellaniz says for very young infants, a cough of any type should receive careful attention. “Coughing can wear out infants younger than six months, so you should always keep a close eye on a baby with a cough.” He explains that this age group is most at risk for complications from respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which is most common in the winter. RSV causes colds and ear infections in older children and adults, but in young babies, he says it can cause bronchiolitis, pneumonia and can lead to severe respiratory problems. “RSV starts out like a normal cold but becomes worse until the child has wheezing, a cough, and difficulty breathing. A quick response is important, and some infants may have to be admitted to the hospital to receive oxygen, medication and fluids.” Other types of cause can often be categorized by the sound they make, the situation they occur in, and even the time of day they occur. Dr. Apellaniz provides an overview of the more common childhood coughs:

“Barking” Cough These coughs are usually caused by croup, an inflammation of the larynx and trachea brought on by allergies, change in temperature at night, or a viral upper respiratory infection. When a young child’s airway becomes inflamed, it swells up, making it harder to breathe. Children under three years of age have croup most often because their windpipes are narrow. Croup can occur suddenly in the middle of the night, which can be frightening for parents and child. Although most cases can be managed at home, if you suspect your child has croup, call your child’s doctor to determine whether your child needs to be examined.

more like a “hoop” sound and really occurs after the cough, when the child tries to take in a deep breath. If your child makes a “hoop” sound after severe bouts of rapid coughing, it is most likely a symptom of pertussis, or whooping cough. This is more likely if your child has not received their diphtheria/tetanus/pertussis (DTP) vaccinations. The whooping cough spell is often followed by vomiting. Infants with pertussis usually do not “whoop” after the prolonged episodes of coughing, but they may not get enough oxygen or they may even stop breathing with this disease. In infants and very young children, pertussis can be deadly, so call your child’s doctor right away if you hear this type of cause or observe this type of coughing episode.

Wheezing When coughing is accompanied by a wheezing sound as your child exhales, it is a sign that something may be partially blocking the lower airway. This might be caused by swelling from asthma, a respiratory infection, or an object stuck in the airway. A doctor should be consulted right away.

Stridor While wheezing usually occurs during exhalation, stridor is noisy, harsh breathing that’s heard when a child inhales. This is most often caused by swelling of the upper airway, usually from viral croup. However, it’s sometimes caused by a more serious infection called epiglottitis or a foreign object stuck in the child’s airway. If your child has stridor, call your child’s doctor immediately

Nighttime Cough Many coughs get worse at night because the benefits of gravity for sinus drainage disappear when the child lies down. The congestion in a child’s nose and sinuses drains down the throat and causes irritation the longer the child is in bed. This is only a problem if they are unable to sleep, and then can be treated with nasal saline drops to relieve congestion, in most cases. Asthma can also trigger nighttime coughs because the airways tend to be more sensitive and become more irritable at night. The treatment at nighttime, or anytime your child has an asthma attack, is their rescue inhaler. If the attacks are occurring frequently at night, their condition may need to be reevaluated and treatment adjusted

“Whooping” Cough The “whooping” sound is actually 40

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Sudden Cough When a child suddenly starts coughing, it may mean she has swallowed some food or liquid “the wrong way,” meaning it went into the airway instead of the esophagus. This type of cough could also mean that something is caught in her throat or airway. Coughing helps clear the airway and may even continue for a minute or so simply because the throat or airway is irritated. If the coughing does not seem to improve or your child has trouble April 2009

breathing, seek medical help immediately. Do not try to clear the throat with your finger because you might push the obstruction even farther down the windpipe.

cough WiTh A cold Because most colds are accompanied by a cough, it’s perfectly normal for your child to develop either a wet or dry cough when she has a cold. The cough usually lasts about a week, often after all other symptoms of the cold have disappeared.

cough WiTh A fever

simple cold. But coughs with a fever of 102 degrees Fahrenheit or higher could be a sign of a more serious condition, such as pneumonia, particularly if your child is listless and breathing fast. In this case, call your child’s doctor immediately. Dr. Apellaniz stresses that parents should never hesitate to call their child’s doctor any time they are concerned about a cough. “But being aware of the type of cough your child has, including how it sounds, will give your doctor important information they need to help your child. So it’s always a good idea to listen carefully to your child’s cough. Knowing what the different sounds could mean is a good skill for any parent to have.”

If your child has a cough, mild fever, and runny nose, chances are she has a

Don’t say Diet. Just say


The Facts About Cancer in Southwest Louisiana – from a local cancer specialist


The fact is, your chances of getting cancer are about the same – regardless of where you live. Whether you are a chef in the northeast, a mechanic in the central plains, or a police officer in Southwest Louisiana, your chances of getting cancer are approximately one out of three*. Here’s another fact: cancer survival rates are lower here than in other parts of the country. Why? People here are less likely to see their doctor for exams and cancer screenings, so cancers are detected later, decreasing the odds of successful treatment. Fortunately, this is a fact you can change by taking control of your healthcare habits.

More than 25 trim-down menu options and nutritional support products.

We all know the earlier cancer is detected, the better the chances of survival. Routine health exams and recommended cancer screenings, along with living a healthier lifestyle, are proven facts for beating cancer. *Source: American Cancer Society, 4300 Ryan Street • 478-4080 GiGi’s Downtown 709 Ryan Street • 310-7023

Fight Cancer with Facts. Henry J. Goolsby, III, MD, Medical Oncology/Hematology

Lake Charles Medical and Surgical Clinic " We have made such great strides in treating cancer, especially when it is detected early. Take control of your cancer by taking control of your healthcare. Early detection gives us the time we need to fight cancer— and win.”

A community partnership between:

April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


We’ve Got Your Number And it tells us everything we need to know about caring for your clothing. This tiny bar code is heat sealed onto each garment you bring into AAA. It’s an important feature of our new automated assembly system that helps us track and process your dry cleaning order more quickly, carefully and efficiently. Drive through convenience, improved automation and digital tracking are helping AAA raise the bar for customer service.

heart & vascular center Welcomes Prominent cardiologists

christopher Thompson, Md, fAcc

john Winterton, Md, fAcc


Kevin young, Md, fAcc

Cardiologists Christopher Thompson, MD, FACC, John Winterton, MD, FACC, and Kevin Young, MD, FACC, recently joined cardiologist William Condos, MD, FACC, and cardiovascular and thoracic surgeon Steven Howe, MD, FACS, with Heart & Vascular Center, as well as the staff of Lake Charles Memorial Hospital. A native of Lake Charles, Dr. Thompson is a graduate of Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans. He completed his internship at Charity Hospital in New Orleans, his residency in internal medicine at Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, and his cardiology fellowship at University Medical Center in Jackson, Florida. He is board certified in interventional cardiology and cardiovascular disease, and has been practicing in Lake Charles since 1994. Dr. Winterton is a graduate of University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana, and Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans, where he also completed his internship and residency in internal medicine and his fellowship in cardiovascular disease. A native of New Orleans, Dr. Winterton is board certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular disease and has been practicing in Lake Charles since 1996. A Louisville, Kentucky native, Dr. Young is a graduate of University of Louisville and University of Louisville School of Medicine in Louisville, Kentucky, where he also completed his internship and residency in internal medicine and his fellowship in cardiovascular diseases. Dr. Young is board certified in internal medicine, with a subspecialty in cardiovascular disease, and has been practicing in Lake Charles since 1998.

louisiana Psychiatrist serves as resource for national Media

622 E. Prien Lake Rd. • 477-3548 (Across from McDonalds)

2713 Country Club Rd. • 562-9508








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(Across from Albertsons)

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Louisiana psychiatrist Dr. Dale Archer is becoming a sought-after expert for national news networks. Dr. Archer, founder of the Institute for Neuropsychiatry in Lake Charles, and host of, has become a regular guest on Fox News and CNN Headline News. Dr. Archer has appeared several times on both’s “Strategy Room,” a live daily Webcast filmed in New York City, and on the daily CNN Headline dale Archer, Md News program “Issues.” “The Strategy Room” brings various guests together to discuss current events in an informal roundtable format. “Issues,” with host JaneVelez-Mitchell, focuses on current headline news across the country. A regular columnist for Lagniappe magazine in Lake Charles, Dr. Archer recently launched a free advice Web site,, which now averages several thousand hits per week. TellDrD.Com is designed to provide advice for persons worldwide through a free and accessible medium. The site allows anonymous users to send Archer questions directly. Responses are posted on the site, which also includes his blog entitled “It’s All Good,” and videos that discuss common mental health concerns, such as chemical imbalance and panic attacks. Archer’s “Take Charge of Your Life” philosophy motivates people to take responsibility for Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

their personal choices so they can lead a healthier and more productive life. Archer maintains that all people he treats, whether they suffer from a chemical imbalance or a personal setback, have the ability to take charge of their decisions and their lives. Archer, a distinguished fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, is a graduate of Tulane Medical School in New Orleans. He has more than 20 years’ of psychiatric experience.

jindal Appoints noble to state network Dr. John Noble, an orthopedic surgeon with the Center for Orthopedics in Lake Charles, has been appointed to the Louisiana Emergency Response Network by Gov. Bobby Jindal.

LERN was created by the Louisiana Legislature in 2004 to address the needs of emergency trauma routing in the state and provide a network for transportation communication in emergent situations. The system allows patients to be rerouted to hospitals where specialist care is available to reduce critical time periods between the time an emergency occurs and the moment initial treatment is delivered. Appointees of LERN ensure that the system is developed and maintained effectively and in the best interests of Louisiana patients. Dr. Noble attended McNeese State University, Louisiana State University and graduated from LSU Medical School in New Orleans. He is board-certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgeons and is a member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons as well as several other societies and organizations. His research has been published in numerous academic journals.

john noble, jr., Md

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April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living




Southern Louisiana charm is easy to find in the growing city of Jennings. Whether you’re looking for small-town hospitality, an historic look at the discovery of oil in Louisiana, or boutiques offering one-of-a-kind finds, you’ll spot it in Jennings. Check out these other great Jennings gems!

Anti Aging tonic ResveRatRol Magnified 10x via shaklee Pat Landreneau nutritional Consultant

natural science & research…One teaspoon equivalent to 100 glasses of red wine. Disease Prevention for Less than $2.75 a day. research literature available upon request.

Lake CharLes • Jennings

337-230-3598 • 1-800-497-5425 •

Bon Temps Express Why Drive When You Can Ride?

Summer Camps �

Beginning June 9, 2009. Registration begins April 1, 2009.

Birthday Parties • Field Trips • Team Building After School Art Lessons • Bridal/Baby Showers We are now booking mobile pottery painting parties, ladies’ nights and summer camps. We will pack up all the supplies and bring them to you.

Bon Temps Express—a Party on Wheels Fun For All Occasions! Prom • Homecoming Bachelor/Bachelorette Wedding • Anniversary Office Bash • Birthday

Call for more information. 526 N. Main Street, Jennings, LA 70546 • 337-824.2223 •

We can also help you plan your dream vacation.

New Orleans-Style Po-Boys Italian Muffuletta Cuban Sandwiches

Call us for details.

Monday–Saturday 10:30AM–7:00PM 534 North Main Street • Jennings, Louisiana 70546 Phone: (337) 824-7555 • Fax: (337) 824-7444


337-774-4FUN •

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Overcoming by Christine Fisher

In today’s pop culture, a look at popular board games gives interesting insight about human nature. Monopoly has a “Get out of Jail Free” card. Yahtzee has the “Chance” category for when the roll of the dice isn’t what you need. Even Scrabble allows a player to pass their turn if they can’t combine letters to form a coherent English word. Interestingly, the creators of the board game “Life” didn’t give players an opportunity to sit out. This game requires players to make the best of whatever is handed down, whether it’s many mouths to feed, water damage to your home, or your uncle leaves you a skunk farm and you have to pay $20,000 to get rid of it. The game of Life is similar to the real thing: excuses don’t work. Taking personal responsibility is a life lesson that can reap big rewards for those who choose to learn it. “When people realize that their personal happiness is completely up to them, it changes their life,” says Dale Archer, MD, psychiatrist and president of the Institute for Neuropsychiatry. “However, when people choose to ignore it, they continue to make excuses, blame others for their unhappiness and tend to become negative and self-defeating. The cause and effect of personal responsibility has major ramifications whether it is embraced or ignored.” The nitty-gritty of taking personal responsibility for your life, Dr. Archer explains, is to realize that others do not have the power to control how you respond to situations. “Circumstances change, bad things happen, difficult decisions must be made. These things are part of life and happen to everyone. The difference is how people react.”

Statistics on the topic of personal responsibility show that people who take responsibility for their happiness and destiny are happier and feel more fulfilled than those who don’t. The results indicated that when participants said they accept responsibility for their current circumstances, they also described themselves as in control, successful, and content. At the other end of the spectrum is irresponsibility, or failure to accept responsibility. “Every person is somewhere in between,” explains Dr. Archer. “With every decision they make, people are either moving toward a higher level of responsibility or irresponsibility.” People who choose to be irresponsible invite anger, hostility, fear and resentment. By burying their head in the past and blaming today’s circumstances on past behavior, they choose to remain in a negative state of mind, rather than accepting the past and doing what they can to improve their present situation. There are many famous people who made a successful life for themselves despite less-than-perfect beginnings. Abraham Lincoln, Henry Ford, Oprah Winfrey, Albert Einstein, Beethoven and Thomas Edison made the list of those who succeeded in spite of difficult circumstances. But, it’s not just famous people who serve as good examples of taking personal responsibility. If you take a look around you, you probably know several ordinary people who have chosen to accept difficult circumstances and play the hand they are dealt. Achieving this “mental makeover” is best done by realizing it will take time to overcome negative tendencies. Dr. Archer offers these four suggestions for getting started: • Understand that changing the way you think is an ongoing process. Each day look for opportunities to incorporate this new way of thinking. Make a conscious decision to examine the choices you make and reaffirm that you are in control. • No one can make you think anything. No matter what happens to you, you make the choice of how you react and how you allow any circumstance affect you. • Excuses are for losers. We all have hundreds of excuses we could allow to hinder us. You can either accept what happens in life and move on, or allow life’s obstacles bury you. • Let go of bitterness, blame, mistrust, anger and insecurity. A sign of wisdom and maturity is when you come to terms with the realization that your decisions cause your rewards and consequences. You are responsible for your life, and your ultimate success depends on the choices you make. Choose wisely.

April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


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Study May Have Identified Marker for

Aggressive Prostate Cancer by Christine Fisher

Researchers may have uncovered a valuable marker for detecting aggressive prostate cancer. Preliminary studies show that the presence an amino acid derivative in the urine known as sarcosine may indicate the course of prostate cancer treatment. Sarcosine was present in men with aggressive prostate cancer. When benign prostate cancer cells were exposed to sarcosine, the cells became invasive and deadly; cancer cells not exposed to sarcosine were tamed and less invasive. Determining the aggressiveness of prostate cancer is one of the challenges in treating it, explained Thomas Alderson, MD, local urologist. “Prostate cancer can be a very slow-developing type of cancer; one that doesn’t necessarily call for aggressive treatment. In other cases, however, it can turn deadly very quickly. The screening test for prostate cancer is the prostate specific antigen, or PSA, and it has come under fire by many health experts as not being defined enough to utilize accurately. The PSA test is a chemical marker made only by cells of the walnut-sized prostate gland. The first sign of prostate cancer can be a spike in blood levels of PSA. A regular PSA test can detect early prostate cancer.“It’s a fact that PSA levels are not accurate all the time,” said Dr. Alderson.“Low PSA levels don’t necessarily mean a man is cancer-free. And high PSA levels don’t necessarily mean a man has dangerous prostate cancer. This is part of the challenge we face as we work with a patient to map out the best course of treatment for him.” The presence or sarcosine could one day solve the clinical issue of trying to distinguish aggressive prostate cancer from the slower-growing version of the disease. Right now, sarcosine in the urine doesn’t give much useful information for treatment. Many more tests must be done to prove the findings and determine how it interacts with various courses of treatments. For now, the PSA test combined with a digital rectal exam continues to be the recommended screening method for all men over 50, according to the American Cancer Society. African American men and those with a family history of prostate cancer should be screened at age 45. The benefit of a PSA test is that it may catch a deadly cancer while it is still curable. The risk is having an unnecessary biopsy and perhaps, surgery or radiation therapy. Researchers are working to learn more about how sarcosine interacts with prostate cancer development, and other issues that could one day revolutionize the way prostate cancer is treated. Dr. Alderson says every man 45 years old and older should discuss prostate cancer with his physician and together, develop a screening schedule that’s in his best interest. For more information, call the Urology Center of Southwest Louisiana at (337) 433-5282.


Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Wedding? Last Minute

Read These Tips:

by Erin K. Cormier

The average engagement lasts from 12 to 15 months, but Wedding Consultant Lisa Murphy has seen engagements that lasted less than three. Although a lastminute wedding can create unique challenges, Murphy reassures couples that quicker preparations don’t necessarily mean that the wedding ceremony has to be second-rate. “You can still have the day of your dreams. You just have to be flexible,” Murphy, owner of Treasured Moments Bridal in Lake Charles, said.“Also, be prepared to make decisions. Vendors need time to make sure that your wedding dreams become a reality.” According to Murphy, one of the biggest hurdles for last-minute weddings is the selection, ordering, and altering of gowns, both for the bride and her bridal party. It can take up to six months for an ordered gown to arrive at regular production time. Instead, those with less time “are still able to purchase a beautiful gown off the rack or have the option to pay for rush production costs,” Murphy said. The necessity for quick decision-making could be considered one of the potential upsides to hurried wedding preparations. It discourages the couple from focusing on the small stuff and allows them to channel their energies to bigger decisions. Dwelling on details is one of the greatest challenges that brides and grooms tend to face, according to local professional photographer Victor Monsour. Monsour has attended and photographed more than 2,000 weddings over his 30-year career. He said couples often focus on making decisions that will please their families, rather than thinking of themselves, which can result in stress. “One of the biggest challenges for them, in my experience, is trying to have everything the way they want and stay within their budget and keep all of the family happy at the same time. I tell many of the brides, including my daughter, that this is their wedding, and that they and their husband are the main ones to please,” Monsour said. According to Murphy, couples with only a few months to plan their wedding often face financial hurdles, but there are at least four major ways to cut costs: Consider having the wedding on a non-peak night, such as Friday or Sunday; have a cocktail or dessert reception rather than a buffet or sit-down reception; consider creative yet inexpensive alternatives for reception venues; and have a moderate guest list, limiting it only to those who mean the most to the relationship. April 2009

Two places where Murphy does not recommend cutting costs is the photos and the wedding gown.“Couples should place emphasis on the things they will remember 20 years from now, which is usually the dress and the pictures. These are not items where you want to cut costs. You don’t get a re-do.” Monsour said modern photography provides a countless array of options for wedding couples, which can be comforting as well as frustrating. He recommends that couples hire a photographer who has a storefront and will likely be in business several months from the wedding. That way, you can order your wedding album at any time. He said some couples wait up to one year before they order all their photos because their finances are committed to so many other things. Monsour has picked up a few other tips from the 2,000-plus weddings he’s attended: • Call and confirm everything with your vendors at least one month in advance, if possible. • Once you determine where the bridal party will be getting ready, make sure all the outlets in the room are in proper working order. Monsour said many people assume that all wall outlets will work, but that isn’t always the case. • If you plan to have a multi-media slideshow, photo show or video during the ceremony or reception, make sure everything is ready to go at least three weeks in advance. Don’t wait until the last minute. • Make sure that all your vendors know how to get in touch with you, and vice versa. For brides – last-minute or otherwise – who want to do all they can to prevent a wedding day snafu, Murphy recommends compiling a bridal survival kit that includes needle and thread (matching not only the bridal gown, but also the bridesmaids dresses), handy wipes, baby wipes, stain remover, safety pins, breath mints, mouthwash, clear nail polish, deodorant, dental floss, nail file, bobby pins, antacid, aspirin, make-up and tissue.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living



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Wedding Planner continued from page 49

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As a featured guest at several civic groups, Dr. Nilsson explained the impact of this new procedure and gave patient results from his surgical practice in Sweden. He was also the featured guest speaker at the medical staff meeting hosted by West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital.

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Sulphur surgeons Walter Ledet and A. Kent Seale have pioneered a new approach to gall bladder surgery, the minicholecystectomy. They have successfully performed this procedure for several years with impressive results. A surgical colleague from Sweden, Erik Nilsson, MD, learned the technique, began using it on his patients and returned to Sulphur recently to report on the positive results he’s seen. This new technique was born out of the dissatisfaction Drs. Seale and Ledet had with results from traditional gall bladder surgery; specifically, the large incision necessary, the prolonged recovery time, and physical toll the major surgery had on the patient’s body. Conversely, physicians nationwide have encountered problems with laparoscopic gall bladder surgery. The tiny incision does not give adequate room to maneuver which has led to other tissue or organs being clipped unintentionally. “There is a lack of depth perception with the equipment used in laparoscopic surgery,” said Dr. Seale. “With our innovation of the minicholecystectomy, we have decreased the error rate at no increased risk to the patient; none of our patients have required transfusions due to major blood loss. This technique is done as day surgery, with patients returning to work in 12 to 14 days.” Dr. Nilsson has seen similar results in his native country. “Traditional gall bladder surgery, although it is a common procedure, is still a major surgery. It has the inherent risk of infection or internal bleeding. With this new technique, I have seen extraordinarily positive results in my patients,” he explained.

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Dr. Nilsson was a consulting surgeon for 22 years at the Motala Hospital in Sweden; professor of surgery and consulting surgeon at the Umeå University in Sweden where presently, he is a professor emeritus in surgical and perioperative sciences. He has received numerous awards, including Mentor of the Year in Surgical Specialties by the Swedish Medical Association. “It’s a pleasure to have Dr. Nilsson return to Southwest Louisiana,” said Dr. Ledet. “He is a respected surgeon in his own country and a valued colleague to Dr. Seale and me. He had excellent reports of his experience with our minicholecystectomy technique.” Drs. Seale and Ledet practice at Sulphur Surgical Clinic with Dr. Joseph O’Donnell. For details about this surgical technique, call their office at 527-6363.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Hi-tech Gadgets by Katie McDaniel


ith the economy in such bad shape, skyrocketing prices are causing many American consumers to cut back on impulsive buying. The majority of Americans are having to watch their bank account balances patiently in hopes of a change. Luckily, there is one industry that will continue to thrive despite the recession. The technology industry continues to flourish due to the demand of high-tech devices. Most Americans need technology to function in today’s society. They don’t mind paying top dollar for the sleekest designs with all of the bells and whistles. This year, producers are offering the latest and best in hi-tech gadgets. They are proving to be budget and user friendly. Whether you are looking for a GPS system or the newest Smartphone, technology can make business and family life easier to manage and with a lot less stress. Here are some hi-tech gadgets to keep an eye on. So channel your inner geek and enjoy the future of technology.

Check out a new category of computers that have recently emerged called Netbooks. They are small laptops with only 7-to-10 inch screens and are simply designed for people on the go. Their price range can run anywhere from $250-500. Most netbooks have many of the features that a normal computer has to offer with the exception of no optical disc drive. Instead, they come with several USB ports equipped to transfer files. According to Paul Wolfe, Owner and Technology Consultant for PrecisionIt, LLC, “Netbooks are a great way to stay connected with your business and colleagues when you are traveling or in the field, but due to their small screens they are best to complement an existing computer, not replace them.” Netbooks are continuing to grow in popularity and are ultimately intended for browsing the net, sending e-mail, enjoying multimedia, and chatting on the go. “Expect this market to grow and flourish in the coming years,” says Wolfe. If Netbooks are still too big for your taste, look into a Smartphone. They are small, all-in-one PDA devices that are the latest craze in the technology

April 2009

world. Unlike ordinary cell phones, Smartphone’s have the ability to let users add features such as a full Qwerty keyboard, E-mail, Microsoft Office, multimedia, Web access and Bluetooth, all while doubling as a telephone. They can be purchased from your cell phone company and are normally priced anywhere from $100-$600. “Many of these Smartphones also have a thriving software development community, with specialized applications for doctor’s, businessmen, and other professional industries. This is a competitive market among manufacturers, new device releases are frequent and the feature set included is getting more impressive every day,” says Wolfe. It’s likely that the concept of the Smartphone will continue to expand and these hand held devices will become even more sophisticated. Another gadget that still has consumers in a craze after two years on the market are Global Positioning Systems (GPS). In a nutshell, they are navigation systems with color maps, audible-driving directions, estimated arrival time and so much more. These systems use global satellites to synchronize information and work 24 hours a day, in every weather condition, anywhere in the world. Some auto manufacturers offer GPS-enabled devices in their vehicles but many consumers choose to buy the portable versions made by Garmin, TomTom, and Magellan, which can be moved from vehicle to vehicle. With a GPS, finding a friend’s house, getting to that meeting on time, or locating that new restaurant seems almost effortless. Consumers can expect the future of technology to continue advancing. These are only a few of the hi-tech gadgets that are leaving their mark in the history books. Don’t let your inhibitions about today’s economy hold you back, get your gadget on and check out the future of technology.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


by Kristy Armand

Add Some Spring to Your Salad It’s time to move the hearty casserole dishes and soup bowls to the back of the cabinet and lighten up your food choices for spring. Fresh spring salads are a quick and easy way to get the healthy nutrition you need without sacrificing taste. Fortunately, today’s salads have come a long way and can go even further with just a little effort. “Gone are the days when green salad meant only iceberg lettuce,” says David Phillips, Clubhouse Chef at Gray Plantation. “The world of possibilities is endless for salads, and there is no limit to the creative ways you can spruce up your side dish or main course salad with different textures, flavors and colors.” Phillips says although plain lettuce is no longer the standard base laser, salad greens do form the basis of most salads, and today, most supermarkets offer many different varieties. He advises looking for red leaf, red and green romaine, mixed greens, Bok Choy, spinach, kale, watercress, arugula, watercress and micro greens. “Remember, generally speaking, the darker the leaf, the more intense the flavor and higher the nutrient content. “Various colored vegetables add texture and interest to salads as well as provide health-promoting plant chemicals called phytochemicals,” says Phillips. “Be creative and go beyond the traditional tomato, carrot and cucumber when choosing your salad vegetables. Red, yellow and green peppers, beets, broccoli, cauliflower, red cabbage, green peas, edamame, red onions and radishes all make vibrant, flavorful additions.”

Recapture the Bloom of

For added color and taste,“don’t forget the fruit,” says Phillips.“Adding fruit to a green salad is a great way to mix in additional color and texture, along with extra vitamins, minerals and fiber. Pineapple chunks, raisins, crasins, apple slices, peaches, pears, melon balls, berries, orange segments and grapes are nice compliments to any green salad.”


Phillips says another way to make an ordinary salad extra ordinary is to add an intriguing crunch by sprinkling on nuts like almonds, pine nuts, and sunflower kernels.

with this spring time offer from the Aesthetic Center

To top it all off, Phillips says there’s practically an unlimited variety of salad dressings, whether you purchase one in a grocery store or make your own.“Don’t cover up the natural flavor of the salad with a heavy dressing. Spring salads work best with light vinaigrettes made with olive or canola oils. You can go even lighter, and splash on just lemon juice or a flavored vinegar.”

For a limited time, the Aesthetic Center is offering a special manufacturer’s rebate for big savings on these popular and extremely effective cosmetic filler injections. Restylane and Perlane are used to plump lips and fill in facial lines and wrinkles for a smoother, more youthful appearance.

The main rule to remember about spring salads, according to Phillips, is there are no rules. “Experiment with different ingredients, textures and combinations. You’ll be surprised by how the different tastes complement each other, and how adventurous you can be putting together all the favors of the season.”

Save up to $150 on Restylane or Perlane cosmetic injections

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Take Greener Care of Your Vehicle by Visiting the Car Wash Did you know that washing your car in the driveway is one of the most environmentally unfriendly and dangerous household chores? It’s true. When you wash your vehicle at home, everything that runs off your car flows into the storm drains and is eventually carried into nearby waterways. This toxic, dirty water, concocted of cleaning chemicals, gasoline, oil, tar and the residue of exhaust fumes can poison wildlife and severely damage the delicate ecosystems of local lakes, rivers, streams, creeks and wetlands.

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“Commercial car washes are a greener option, because we pipe our water into a separate sanitary sewer, which funnels it to wastewater facilities where it is treated and recycled,” said Don Breaux of Don’s Car Wash, which has locations on Ryan Street and Nelson Road. According to the Nature Conservatory, the world’s leading conservation organization, not only is choosing to use a commercial car wash a more environmentally friendly option in terms of disposal, washing a car at home may use between 80 to 140 gallons of water, while a commercial car wash averages less than 45 gallons per car. “We conserve water by utilizing efficient equipment, such as high-pressure nozzles and pumps that minimize water usage,” Breaux said.“We also recycle rinse water through a reclamation system.” To recognize April as National Car Care Month, Breaux reminds consumers to have their cars professionally washed. Regular washes will further maintain your car’s appearance, sustainability and value, Breaux said.

April 2009

Call Us Today (337) 436-8913

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

2800 Westwood Rd., Westlake, LA


Use Clever Staging to

Spring Your Home Sale Forward It’s spring. The flowers are blooming, the birds are chirping, the garden is growing – but your home isn’t selling. What gives? According to Joan Johnson, agent with Flavin Realty, the problem could be as simple as empty flowerpots or leaf-ridden yards. “Spring is typically one of the busiest seasons for home sales. If you aren’t getting knocks on the door or inquiries on your house, it could be because it’s still winter at your house,” Johnson said. “You need to bring the season home.” In south Louisiana, spring lives up to its reputation as a season of rebirth. The azaleas sprout, fruits push their way off tree limbs and the grass grows lush and green. Unfortunately, some embrace spring more readily than others, and when it comes to selling your house, it shows. “Just imagine driving down a street and seeing the house on the corner with beautiful flowers, a well-kept lawn and flowerpots on the windowsill. You’re thinking, ‘This is a gorgeous neighborhood.’ Then you drive further down the road and see the house for sale, with missing patches of grass and leaves all over the yard. Some homebuyers will look at that and think of all the ways they can beautify it, but others – many others – will just keep driving,” Johnson said. “Although Lake Charles hasn’t been greatly affected by the downturns in the national economy, this can still be difficult time to sell your house. You want to be above the rest, even if it takes a few dollars from your pocket. Luckily, it doesn’t take that much money to bring spring home.” She offered the following tips for home-sellers to spruce up their spring staging:

• A successful home sale starts on the curb. Look at your house from the

outside and try to see it as a stranger would. Are the colors vibrant? Do they correlate well with the life of spring? How does the house look compared to the others? “The best way to bring vibrancy to the outside of your house would be to paint it, but I realize that’s not always the most cost-effective or time-efficient option. If you can’t paint, consider bringing some décor to the outside of your house. Use flowers with bright and cheerful colors, like yellow. Paint or decorate the front door,” Johnson said. • Make sure you don’t have any empty flowerpots or dead flowers in front of your house, and keep your lawn raked and mowed. Spend extra time weed-eating the walkway or driveway to precision, creating nice, clean lines. • Spring is a time for cleaning – out with the old, in with the new. Make sure the inside of your house reflects that. Box up winter wardrobe or décor and put it out of sight. Keep the interior of your house as uncluttered as possible. If needed, have a garage sale or store items in the attic. “Scrub the floors, wipe down the windows, vacuum the floors,” Johnson said. “Spring is a fresh and clean season. Your house should be fresh and clean too.” • Bring spring indoors. Decorate with fresh flowers, plants, and bright and sunny artwork. Your house should have life and energy. • Use air fresheners sparingly that are appropriate to the season. Put away the cinnamon smells of December and use the garden fragrances of April. • Put a cheerful “welcome” mat on your doorstep. “It’s amazing how one simple thing like that can make a home more inviting,” Johnson said. For more information about selling your home, call Flavin Realty at 478-8530 or visit

by Erin K. Cormier


Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

National Medical Laboratory Professionals Week More than 10 billion lab tests are performed in the United States each year. Although patients often equate physicians and nurses with their personal health care, medical laboratory professionals play an integral role in the delivery and treatment and are often considered the people behind the doctors.“Medical laboratory professionals are vital to successful healthcare,” said Gregory Bowling, MD, pathologist and medical director of the Medical Laboratory of Southwest Louisiana.“These specially trained experts perform laboratory tests to screen for and diagnose diseases, to guide selection of appropriate treatments and to monitor the success of those treatments.”

During the week of April 19-25, the health care community will celebrate National Medical Laboratory Professionals Week, with the theme “Laboratory Professionals Get Results.” According to Bowling, that’s exactly what lab professionals do.“Laboratory results account for up to 70 percent of the information in a patient’s medical record. Laboratorians are always mindful that there is a person depending on a timely and accurate test result,” Bowling said.

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downturns in the economy now require active fund-raising efforts. Tickets are $100 per person. For information, contact Fr. Mancuso or Sheryl Nixon at 439-2646.

IAAP Presents Community Luncheon The Magnolia Chapter of International Association of Administrative Professionals will hold its 14th annual Dutch Treat Community Luncheon from 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 21, at the Lake Charles Civic Center. A fashion show, vendor exposition and door prizes will be presented. Cost is $25 and vendor booths are available for $30. For more information, call Nancy Borel at 475-5083 or email

Grand Openings

Local Volunteer Honored by ACS Volunteer Koni Bridges was awarded the 2009 Income Development Volunteer of the Year award for the state of Louisiana by the American Cancer Society. As captain of the West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital Relay for Life team, Bridges helped raise about $90,000 for the ACS over three years.

Estate and Tax-Planning Seminar Clark & Burnette Financial Services is hosting “New Times….New Laws… New Techniques,” a free webcast with estate and tax-planning expert Roy Adams. This continuing education opportunity will take place at noon on Thursday, April 30, at the McDonald’s Corporate Center, 3414 Common Street, Lake Charles. Lunch will be served beginning at 11:30. Application has been made for FREE Continuing Education credits for CLE, CPA, CTFA and CFP. Adams, recognized as one of the best lawyers in America, is managing member of Roy M. Adams & Associates, a partner of Constantine Cannon LLP. Considered an expert in his field, Adams is a sought- after speaker, both nationally and internationally. Seating is limited and pre-registration is requested. For more information or to register, call Clark & Burnette Financial Services at 562-9500, or email

Nominations Sought for Arts Awards The Arts and Humanities council of Southwest Louisiana will accept public nominations for the 2009 Mayor’s Arts Awards through April 17. Categories include Artist of the Year, Citizen of the Arts, Citizen of the Humanities, Arts Educator of the Year, Cultural Organization of the Year and Business/ Corporate Patron of the Year. The Keystone Award is also given to an individual who works behind the scenes. Those who make nominations should send a letter of nomination to the Arts Council at 809 Kirby Street, Suite 202, Lake Charles 70601, or email it to Senders should include complete contact information for themselves and their nominees. For more information, call 439-2787.

Diocese Presents “Jazz on the Lake” Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Lake Charles will present Jazz on the Lake, a fund-raising event, at 12:30 p.m. Sunday, June 7, in the Buccaneer Room of the Lake Charles Civic Center. Proceeds will benefit Catholic Charities, which provides assistance to families in need. According to Fr. Henry Mancuso, secretary for pastoral services, grants and donations have supported local Catholic Charities for several years; however, recent


Business First Bank recently held a ribbon cutting for its new branch at 728 Ryan Street downtown. BusinessFirst was created by former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer with a plan to capture the business banking market. The Wine Store at 4070 Nelson Road will be open from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. MondaySaturday, offering custom gift baskets and fine wine. Owners are Mike and Martha Holleman. For more information, call 477-7017.

Licensing Course Available The Louisiana Consortium of Insurance and Financial Services at Louisiana State University in Shreveport will present a pre-Licensing course for life and health insurance from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. April 17-18 and April 24-25 in Room 118 of the Burton Business Center at McNeese State University. April 15 is the registration deadline and cost for the course is $200, which includes textbooks. This course provides 32 hours of class time suitable to prepare an individual to sit for the Property and Casualty Licensing exam. For registration or more information, contact the McNeese Electronic Learning office at 475-5075.

L’Auberge Kicks Off Pool Party Season L’Auberge du Lac Casino Resort will open its Party by the Pool concert series on May 7 with local band Magnolia Sons opening for multiplatinum rocker group Everclear. The party season will continue with Mustang Sally on May 14; Ashes of Babylon, May 21; Dash Rip Rock, May 28; Sponge and Days of the New, opening for Seven Mary Three on June 4; U.S., June 11; The Molly Ringwalds, June 18; and Triggerproof, June 25.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Admission to Party by the Pool is free for women and $5 for men. Attendees must be at least 21. Doors open at 6 p.m.

West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital Nurse Receives Master’s Degree Annette Belcher, RN-HCSM, recently received her Master’s of Science in Nursing, Health Care Systems Management, from Loyola University in New Orleans. Belcher graduated from McNeese State University in 1995 with a BS in Nursing. She presently serves as the Medical Telemetry/Resource Manager for West Annette Belcher, RN-HCSM Calcasieu Cameron Hospital and has been with the hospital for seven months.

Digital Photography Class Available Local photographer Valerie Smith, a member of the Associated Louisiana Artists, will present a six-week course, “Digital Cameras for Dummies,” from 7-9 p.m. Mondays, May 11-June 15, at the Gallery by the Lake Creative Arts Center, 106 W. Lawrence Street. Class size is limited to 12. Cost is $85. Attendees should bring their own cameras and owner’s manuals. For more information, call 436-1008 or 302-1978. Smith’s photography has been shown in several local and regional competitions.

First Federal Bank Announces Promotion

Ryan Rodericks

ACTS Hosts Gala ACTS Theatre will host an opening night gala for “La Cage Aux Folles,” a Jerry Herman Broadway musical, at 5:45 p.m. Saturday, April 18, at One Reid Street. The gala includes food, drinks in the courtyward and the production. Entertainment immediately follows. Tickets are $60. For more information, call 436-5908.

Velveteen Rabbit Cast Announced The cast for the Children’s Theatre Company season finale production of “The Velveteen Rabbit” has been announced and will include Brianna Guidry, Kathryn Matte, Samuel Owens, Dylana Smith, Maegan McBroom, Ciarra Woods, Alex Landry, Sarah Bonvillain, Donvan Primeaux, Quincy Willis and Adyn Gaughan. The production is based on Margery Williams’ 1922 children’s novel. The show, directed by Kerry Onxley, will be presented at 7:30 p.m. May 1-2 and 3 p.m. May 3 at the Central School Arts & Humanities Center, 809 Kirby Street. Tickets are $15 for adults and $12 for tickets. Applause Season members should reserve tickets through the theater. For more information, call 433-7323 or visit

YMCA Starts Summer Camp Registration YMCA of Lake Charles is now registering for June 1-August 14 summer camp. Cost is $80 per week, with a $30 registration fee. Campers must be 5-12 years old. Camp hours are 6:30 a.m.-5:30pm at First Christian Church, 2525 2nd Ave. Each camper will receive a camp shirt and we will go on weekly field trips. Registration is available at the YMCA, 3426 Ryan St. For more information, call (337)562-8383.

First Federal Bank of Louisiana has announced the promotion of Ryan Rodericks to vice president, according to Charles V. Timpa, President and CEO. Rodericks is a graduate of Barbe High School and McNeese State University. A native of Bombay, India, he has been a Lake Charles resident since 1991. He joined First Federal in 2003 as a credit analyst and currently serves as Business Banking Relationship Manager for the bank.

McNeese Registration Underway April 24 is the deadline to apply for admission to be eligible for regular summer registration at McNeese. Regular summer registration will continue through April 30. Students who have enrolled and registered online for McNeese’s summer sessions have until 3:45 p.m. June 4 to pay fees. Students who fail to meet the fee payment deadline will be dropped from class rolls. Classes begin June 8 for the regular summer session and the first mini-session, while classes for the second mini-session begin June 29. For more information about summer registration at McNeese, contact the registrar’s office at (337) 475-5356 or 1-800-622-3352, ext. 5356.

McNeese Professors Honored L’Auberge du Lac Casino Resort, in conjunction with parent company Pinnacle Entertainment, recently honored six professors from McNeese State University with Pinnacle Excellence Awards. L’Auberge Regional Vice President and General Manager Larry Lepinski and McNeese State University President Dr. Robert Hebert presented the educators with checks totaling $30,000. The 2008 Pinnacle Excellence Award winners are Dr. Dustin Hebert and Dr. Brett Welch, College of Education (co-winners); Dr. Seung Hwan Kim, College of Business; Amy Bufford, College of Nursing; Dr. Jay Comeaux, College of Science; Dr. John Griffith, College of Engineering and Engineering Technology; and Dr. Derek Blakely, College of Liberal Arts. Each winner received a $5,000 check and a commemorative award statue.

The Lake Charles CCA Chapter joined more than 300 members and guests in New Orleans for the Coastal Conservation Association’s 4th Annual State Convention, where Gus Schram was elected state president and Bob Bush assumed the position of chairman. Five new members from the area joined the state board of directors, including: Brett Wicke Bordelon, Edwin McCall, Kevin Lacy, Ellis Dupre and Bryan Williams. Chas Drost was also named to the Management Committee, which is an executive committee that oversees the operations of CCA Louisiana. Pictured are Schram, from left, Bordelon, Wicke, Lacy, McCall, Grunewald, Drost and Harbuck.

Works on Paper Continues through April 23 The 22nd Annual McNeese National Works on Paper Exhibition continues through April 23 at Abercrombie Gallery, located in Room 125 of the Shearman Fine Arts Center. The exhibit is sponsored by the McNeese Visual Arts Department and is part of the 2009 McNeese Banners Series. Gallery hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays and the gallery is closed on weekends and for university holidays. continued on page 58

April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


continued from page 57


Breaking the Pain of ARTHRITIS and SpORTS INjURIES

Joy Glidden, director of Louisiana Artworks in New Orleans, is the juror for this year¹s Works on Paper Exhibition. Two of the artists selected are McNeese student Robin Stodder, a junior visual arts major with a concentration in painting, and McNeese visual arts alumnus M. Blaine Miller.

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First, the physician introduces medicines damaged, arthritic cells FINALLY... a non-surgical treatment with natural no downtime that’sinto designed to help you fight by means of a precise injection. This is followed by infrared laser, and other against arthritis and sports injuries! modalities in order to accelerate the process. It usually only takes 1 to 6 treatThis is how it works: The physician introduces natural medicines into damaged, arthritic cells ments for you to improve, depending upon tissue damage, severity and joint size. by means of a precise injection. This is followed by infrared laser, and other modalities in order to There is usually no downtime, and you can resume your usual activities accelerate the process. It usually only takes 1 to 6 treatments for you to improve, depending upon immediately. tissue damage, severity and joint size. you suffer from muscoskeletal problems knee or shoulder pain, There If is usually no downtime, and you can resume yoursuch usualas activities immediately. whiplash, tendonitis, torn ligaments, cartilage damage or sprains and strains, give If you suffer from muscoskeletal problems such as knee or shoulder pain, whiplash, tendonitis, a call today for more information! tornus ligaments, cartilage damage or sprains and strains, give us a call today for more information!

Tico Soto, director of sales for the Lake Charles/ Southwest Louisiana Convention & Visitors Bureau, was recently honored with the President’s Award at the annual convention for the Louisiana Society of Association Executives. Soto was recognized for his dedication and Tico soto extraordinary contributions to LSAE in 2008, including a 12% membership increase under his leadership as membership chairman. He has been an active participant on the LSAE Board of Directors for two years. He also spearheaded the 2008 conference for the organization that was held in Lake Charles last January with a record attendance of more than 100. Soto has been in the tourism industry for 13 years, with experience in both domestic and international sales.

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Leif Pedersen has been hired as senior vice president of philanthropy at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital. In his new role, Pedersen is tasked with reestablishing The Foundation at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital and fulfilling its mission to raise funds for capital needs, endowments, special programs and support of community efforts. Pedersen previously served as vice president of Louisiana Medical Center & leif Pedersen Heart Hospital in Lacombe, Louisiana, where he was responsible for marketing, physician relations and managed care oversight for the last three years. He also served as Chief Development Officer for Methodist Health System in New Orleans and was instrumental in obtaining over $23 million in gifts for the System Foundation during his 18-year tenure.

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A student at Maplewood Middle School sticks to a Velcro wall during a March performance of FMA Live!, a touring production sponsored by NASA and Honeywell. FMA Live engages middleschool students in math and science through a live, ground-breaking stage show that travels cross-country demonstrating science in everyday life.


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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

Two Maplewood Middle School students talk to performers with FMA Live! The students were used as volunteers in the scientific stage show that demonstrates Isaac Newton’s laws of forces and motion. The show travels to schools throughout the nation to engage middle-schoolers in math and science. April 2009

CHRISTUS South Lake Charles CHRISTUS South Lake Charles had its grand opening and ribbon cutting on March 26 at 1601 Country Club Road. CHRISTUS South Lake Charles is a combination of CHRISTUS Women’s Health Center, Prepare Center for pre-surgery services, and Southwest Louisiana Imaging. The new state-of-the-art facility provides the latest in technology, women’s services and comprehensive diagnostic imaging services. The Women’s Health Center services include digital mammography, bone density services, ultrasound, breast MRI, and on-site consultation. The Prepare Center offers patients the same pre-surgery care as CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital, including preadmission visits, lab testing, diagnostic X-ray, EKG and preparation help for surgery. The Prepare Center also has a radiologist on site. Southwest Louisiana Imaging offers advanced MRI and CT Imaging Technology, including the Magnetom Verio Large Bore 3T MRI scanner, the only one of its kind in the area.

THE BEST IMAGING...THE BEST RESULTS Southwest Louisiana Imaging proudly introduces the most advanced, powerful MRI available: the new Large Bore 3T MAGNETOM Verio MRI, the first and only one in the region.

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NOW OPEN! South Lake Charles location: 1601 Country Club Road, 337-439-7778 | Midtown location: 650 Dr. Michael DeBakey Drive, 337-439-7778 April 2009

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Finalists Selected for

samaritan of the year Award Community Invited to Vote on their Choice

Ten finalists were selected for Samaritan Counseling Center’s 2008 Good Samaritan of the Year Award. The winner will be announced at the second annual Good Samaritan Dinner and Auction in early April. To be considered as a finalist, nominees had to demonstrate long-term commitments to addressing mental health issues, promoting health in mind, body and spirit, improving the lives of others, and investing time and money for projects that benefit those in need in Southwest Louisiana. The Good Samaritan of the Year is sponsored by KPLC-TV and Thrive Magazine. Below is a look at the selected finalists and the basis of their nominations:

• john Morris, local businessman, for delivering church services and

• b.j. cayton, director of the McNeese Counseling Center, for her


dedication to the mental health of veterans of foreign wars, more than 30 years in mental health counseling, service on the Louisiana Methodist Conference Committee for Emergency Response Team, and continued loyalty and assistance to the McNeese community. doug ezell, licensed counselor and retired district superintendent of the Lake Charles District United Methodist Church, for his dynamic work in ministry, coordination of the Mayor’s Ministry Coalition Committee, and dedication to the betterment of mental and spiritual health, particularly in the aftermath of recent hurricanes. julie giordano, interim executive director of Habitat for Humanity, for her empowerment of victimized men and women, compassion for mentally or spiritually disturbed youth, continual volunteerism, determination for the advancement of non-profit endeavors and support of those who have suffered personal setbacks or tragedies. Willie King jr., local businessman and president of Project Build A Future, for his empowerment of youth, involvement and personal investment in area schools, chairmanship of the 100 Black Men Youth Leadership Program, continual volunteerism, and dedication to the achievement of home ownership for struggling families. father henry Mancuso, pastor of Sacred Heart Church and director of Catholic Charities and Social Services for the Lake Charles Diocese, for his empowerment of the less fortunate or underrepresented populations, assistance in the creation of the Lake Area Ministerial Alliance, continual volunteerism, and dynamic advocacy to improve the quality of life for the people of Southwest Louisiana.

hymns to hospitalized and bedridden patients, cooking dinners and providing transportation for church members diagnosed with mental illness, and continued dedication to Circle Up, a spiritual support group for persons with mental illness and their family members. Ann Polak, director of the Calcasieu Women’s Shelter, for her longtime devotion to the prevention of personal and societal violence, ongoing and outspoken advocacy on behalf of battered women and children, empowerment and protection of abused women and families, and service to the Crime Victims Reparations Board, Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Southwest Louisiana Homeless Coalition. clarice raichel, director of the local chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, for ongoing advocacy on behalf of those with mental illness, assisting with development of a mental health court initiative, continued guidance and compassion to families, and dedication to public education on issues that affect those with mental illness. judge robert Wyatt, 14th Judicial District, for his progressive and innovative approach to solving social problems, assistance in the development of a mental health court, professional compassion and respect to those in the criminal justice system, and dedication to continued education on issues that effect those with mental illness. beth Zilbert, non-profit attorney and director of the People’s Advocate, for empowerment of troubled youth, countless hours of pro-bono work for impoverished families, development of social betterment programs, continual volunteerism, and development of the Southwest Louisiana Chapter of the Humane Society of Louisiana and its community programs.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Innovative Procedure

by Laila Morcos

Repairs Compression Fractures

Traditionally, back trauma has been treated with bed rest, instructions for limited activity, and pain medications such as muscle relaxants and anti-inflammatory drugs. Patients often have to wear a back brace and endure physical therapy. Today, however, some patents in Southwest Louisiana are benefitting from an advanced treatment known as kyphoplasty. For those who have suffered from compression fractures of the vertebra, kyphoplasty is often their only hope for successful treatment. Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive spinal procedure with a high success rate and, in many cases, little need for follow-up physical therapy. Kyphoplasty is typically used to treat progressive vertebral compression fractures, also known as VCFs, which can happen following even minimal trauma or as the result of advancing age. “People of all ages are capable of suffering from a VCF in a trauma, but for the elderly, VCFs can occur with little or no force, particularly among those who have weak bones due to osteoporosis. Cancer patients with spinal tumors are also at risk,” explains James Perry, MD, orthopaedic surgeon and spine specialist with Center for Orthopaedics. According to Dr Perry, the kyphoplasty procedure is minimally invasive. The patient lays face-down on an operating room table under slight sedation. After the collapsed bone is examined with fluoroscopy, the physician makes two small incisions in the back, near the site of the fractured bone, and inserts a tube with an inflatable balloon that attempts to push the bone back into place. “Once the bone is in its proper place, a special type of cement is injected into the cavity. Once the cement hardens, the tubes are removed, the incisions are stitched, and the patient is on his or her way. The cement only takes about 15 minutes to harden,” he said.“The procedure can be used again if needed in the event of future or multiple fractures.” Dr. Perry says kyphoplasty has proven to be a safe and effective method to treat pain and fractures effectively and permanently. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, more than 95 percent of patients said their kyphoplasty treatment was a success. Many did not need physical therapy. Mild pain associated with kyphoplasty usually only lasts for about two weeks, as a result of the procedure itself, Dr. Perry said. Symptoms of a vertebral compression fracture include back, hip, abdominal or thigh pain, numbness, tingling, weakness, and inability to urinate or have a bowel movement. Vertebral compression fractures in patients with osteoporosis usually produce severe pain. “In patients with osteoporosis, kyphoplasty may partially restore the vertebral body back to its original height and creates a cavity that can be filled with bone cement. Frequently, this is helpful in partially alleviating pain, reducing fractures, and diminishing the loss of spinal curvature,” Dr. Perry said. For more information about vertebral compression fractures and kyphoplasty, call the Center for Orthopaedics at 721-7236.

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April 2009

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you can’t Afford to be

Are you trashy? You are if you litter, and it might be wise for you to take note of a new community program recently launched by the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury. The police jury’s new program is using a tough approach:“You Can’t Afford to be Trashy.” Area law enforcement agencies are working with the police jury to ticket litterers in Calcasieu Parish. The new process calls for a first offense violation fine of $40, which must be paid to the District Attorney’s Office within six weeks. If the violator chooses to ignore the ticket, then their driver’s license will be suspended until the fine is paid. All money from litter fines will be placed into the parish’s Beautification Fund to be used for future programs to reduce litter.

WhAT cAn you do To fighT liTTer? If you are sick of litterers using the landscape of Calcasieu Parish as a trash dump, make a difference by reporting the offenders to the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Department. If you see someone littering, all you need to do is call 493-liTr (5487). All that will be needed is some basic information, primarily the license number of the violator. The owner of the vehicle will be sent a letter stating that they have been reported for littering and should consider the correspondence as a warning. For positive

Quick. Clear. Accurate.

And now, DISCOUNTED. West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital is offering a discounted rate for a digital mammogram so that more women will have access to this advanced technology. Digital mammography gives clear images in a shorter amount of time with Computer Aided Detection to point out areas of concern for a closer look. West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital is a sponsor of the “Fight Cancer with Facts” educational campaign, encouraging everyone to get active, get screened, and learn the facts about cancer in our area. Deaths attributed to breast cancer would decrease in Southwest Louisiana if more women would see their doctor regularly, get a mammogram yearly after the age of 40, choose healthy foods and make exercise part of their lifestyle.

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Cost after discount is $200* April 21 – 23, 2009 7:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.


Since the launch of this new, assertive anti-litter program, more then 100 people have called the hotline to report litterers in Calcasieu Parish.

WhAT is considered “liTTer?” You may be surprised to learn that litter is the improper placement of any waste material. It comes in many shapes, sizes and forms, such as a cigarette butt flicked from a car window, a discarded take-out food bag, objects not properly tied down in a truck bed or the one that item that makes everybody cringe—the dirty diaper in the parking lot, which according to litter statistics is a “Louisiana special.” Litter has always been a major problem in Southwest Louisiana. It is unsightly, unsanitary, potentially dangerous and just filthy. Many visitors have said that when it comes to trash, this area is one of the dirtiest locales in the country. Education is also a major focus of this new anti-litter initiative. A K-12 curriculum has been proposed to the Calcasieu Parish School Board in hopes that litter will be an important topic that a student re-visits throughout every grade of their development. With this component in place, the police jury hopes that the area might see a shift in values over the course of the next 10-15 years. In Calcasieu Parish, we can’t afford to be trashy. Don’t let litter destroy our home, remember to always throw your garbage in a proper facility and to call the hotline when you see someone littering.

It’s time to make your health a priority and WCCH is helping you take the first step. Call today to schedule your appointment, 527-4256. *Discount applies to costs billed from West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital. Radiology fees are billed separately and are not included in the discount.

reinforcement, a litterbag will be enclosed in the envelope for encouragement not to repeat the crime. Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Men Are Lining Up to Get the Lines Out I

t helps television heartthrob Patrick Dempsey look McDreamy, former teen idol Donny Osmond keep his youthful puppy love appeal, and Olympic swimming champion Mark Spitz maintain his competitive edge. It’s Botox, and these cosmetic injections are becoming so popular among men that a new term,“Boytox,” has been coined to refer to the trend. And it’s not just male celebrities taking advantage of the benefits of Botox. The number of men in the United States having Botox injections has tripled since 2001, approaching 300,000 and accounting for nearly 20 percent of all Botox procedures performed. Many experts attribute the growing interest in Botox among men to increasing competition in the job market. Men want to look younger because once they reach a certain age; they begin to feel the pressure of the younger generation waiting to take their place. And despite the recession, the Botox trend shows no sign of slowing down, perhaps because one of the many things unemployed professionals cannot afford is to look their age as they search for a new position. Locally, where the recession is not such a big factor, men are seeking Botox for the same reasons women are.“Women are not alone in their worries about wrinkles and desire to have a youthful appearance. Men have the same concerns,” says Mark Crawford, MD, facial cosmetic specialist and Medical Director of the Aesthetic Center of Southwest Louisiana. “Men are staying in the workforce longer and maintaining a more active lifestyle as they age. Botox provides an easy way to address some of the more

prominent signs of aging, helping men look as young as they feel.” Dr. Crawford explains that Botox is used to smooth out wrinkles in the forehead, between the brows and in the corners of the eyes. “Botox is best for treating these dynamic wrinkles that occur when you smile, laugh or frown. After many years of making the same facial expressions, deep horizontal and vertical wrinkles form in the forehead and around the eyes and because men have larger muscles in these areas, this effect is often more noticeable. Botox works by immobilizing the muscles used when frowning or squinting. The treated area then appears smooth, relaxed and wrinkle-free.” He adds that men typically seek Botox at a later age than women do – late 40s to early 50s is more common for men, compared to mid to late 30s for women. Dr. Crawford says for men, Botox is most popular for eliminating forehead wrinkles and lines between the brows that they feel cause them to look perpetually angry. Men also benefit from Botox used on “crow’s feet” around the corners of the eyes they feel make them look old and tired. Another reason Botox appeals to men is that the treatment literally takes only minutes. “There is no down time,” says Dr. Crawford. “You can come in over lunch for the injection and go right back to work. The results are almost immediately visible, with no side effects and last for months. That’s the kind of results men are looking for.” For more information about Botox, fillers call the Aesthetic Center in The Eye Clinic at 478-3810 or visit

by Kristy Armand

April 2009

Thrive Magazine for Better Living


by Kristy Armand

High Tech Option Makes Painful Eye Condition Disappear

er g n u o Y r u Bring in O xperience oE t s r e b m e M aving S f o c i g a The M

For the last year or so, John LaBove has endured the pain and irritation caused by a pterygium (pronounced te rijjee em), a benign growth at the side of his eye that obstructed his vision. A degenerative condition of the cornea, this small triangular patch of tissue was difficult to endure: His eyes were constantly red, itchy, inflamed, dry, and painful. His vision was often blurred, and as the pterygium grew, so did the pain and distortion.

ek Youth We 4 April 17-2

An emergency medical technician in Cameron Parish, LaBove needed to focus on his patients—not on his own problem—so he sought help from Dr. A.J. O’Byrne, an ophthalmologist with The Eye Clinic.“Pterygium typically occurs by exposure to ultraviolet light, such as the sun, and dust. The growth is not cancerous, but the condition can be painful and definitely bothersome for sufferers,” Dr. O’Byrne explained.

Main Office: Phone: 337.477.2000 • Sulphur Branch: Phone: 337.625.5747

An avid hunter and fisherman, LaBove knew exactly how the pterygium developed.“But I wear sunglasses all the time now,” he vowed. In the past, Labove’s treatment options would have been few and bleak. The painful surgery to remove the pterygium was often considered ineffectual in the long-term, so doctors typically advised patients to learn to endure the irritating symptoms caused by the condition.

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If surgery was performed, the growth typically recurred in 50 percent of cases. Now, Dr. O’Byrne performs a relatively new, minimally-invasive procedure as an outpatient surgery. He removes the pterygium and grafts on a new amniotic membrane. The procedure is followed by a short course of lowdose radiation therapy administered in the radiation oncology center at Lake Charles Memorial Hospital.“In addition to the low recurrence rate, this type of radiation is comparable to an X-ray, so it’s virtually painless and very low-risk,” Dr. O’Byrne explained. The Eye Clinic is the only practice in Louisiana that currently offers this type of treatment.“We have been doing this treatment for three years and have no recurrences to date,” said Dr. O’Byrne.“That’s obviously a huge difference compared to the traditional surgery.” Dr. O’Byrne added that “there are many cases in Southwest Louisiana that go untreated because most eye doctors believe that the pterygium will recur, so it’s not worth the patient’s pain, time or expense to treat it,” Dr. O’Byrne said.“This was true with the old procedure, but not the new one. Suffers of this condition should be aware that they now have options and they don’t have to live For LaBove the new procedure was a clear success. “It was completely gone and I was back at work in three or four days,” he said. For more information, call The Eye Clinic at 478-3810 or 1-800-826-5223.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Routine Mammogram Made the Difference by Christine Fisher

surgery, it would be better to remove the entire breast then go ahead. It’s better to lose a breast than lose my life,” she said. The lumpectomy was successful. The next challenge facing Virgie was 6 weeks of chemotherapy. “It was once a week and yes, I lost my hair; but other than that, I had no major side effects other than being very tired. Eating was more of a challenge, not because I was sick, but because everything had a metallic taste. Except,” she said with a smile,“ice cream and cream pies! Those tasted wonderful and I indulged often.” Virgie’s last day of chemo was also her 42nd wedding anniversary.“We celebrated the day in the doctor’s office,” she said,“but that was okay.” Radiation treatment was next. Wrapping up her treatment was a full body scan after radiation.“It showed no sign of cancer cells,” Virgie said.“That was the best news I’d heard in a long time.” Virgie says one of the most comforting things to her throughout the experience is that she’d had those regular mammograms for years.“When I would have the inevitable times of doubt, I would remind myself that I’d had those screenings; that this cancer was new, it hadn’t spread, and that gave me great odds for a complete recovery. I am so glad I made myself get those mammograms every year. It requires effort, but isn’t our health worth it? If you don’t have good health, you’re missing so much out of life. I know.” Virgie Hughes, age 62, owes her life to a mammogram. It detected the beginnings of her breast cancer and also marked the beginning of Virgie’s mission to impress upon women the importance of getting regular mammograms. Getting a mammogram was part of Virgie’s routine every year.“I’ve always felt we should do what we can to keep our bodies healthy. I’m not a health nut – far from it, in fact – but I was able to get regular mammograms and saw it as part of my responsibility to take care of my health.” Early detection is one of the major keys in fighting cancer.“The earlier it’s detected, the better the outcome,” said Jason Ramm, MD, family medicine physician and medical staff member of West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital. “But, we can’t detect it without screenings and consistent doctor’s visits. Ms. Hughes has the right outlook: the patient has a responsibility for their own health to see their doctor, get screened and live a healthy lifestyle. In fact, lifestyle factors affect about 2/3 of all cancers detected. By exercising regularly, eating healthy and getting regular screenings, we could greatly reduce the number of cancers diagnosed. We actually have more control over cancer than most people realize.” Her annual mammogram in the fall of 2007 showed something unusual. The subsequent MRI showed the mass was deep inside her left breast tissue; surgery was recommended. “During this time when I was grasping with the idea that I might have cancer, it helped to know that I’d had regular mammograms. I knew that if it turned out to be cancer, it wasn’t there the year before,” she said.“It was detected early and that’s what made the difference for me.” She said this was one of the hardest periods in her life.“Throughout the uncertainty, the follow up testing and doctor’s visits, I had an underlying measure of peace,” she said.“I felt confident in the care I was receiving.” Surgery was scheduled for October 30. It was to be a lumpectomy, where the tumor and some surrounding tissue are removed. “But, I told my doctor that if, during the April 2009

She also knows what’s it’s like to be on the other side of the diagnosis. The year before Virgie’s cancer was diagnosed, her husband, Ronald, had heart surgery.“That experience was harder than my cancer treatment,” she said.“It was difficult to watch him and not be able to do much to help. During my own treatment, I felt more in control.” That sense of control seems elusive to some people who mistakenly believe that people in Southwest Louisiana have a higher chance of getting cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, one in three people will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime, regardless of where they live. Cancer rates in Southwest Louisiana are the same as the national average. Virgie finds that she pays more attention to eating healthy foods and tries to exercise each day. Her motivation is her one-year-old grandson, Jack, and says she wants to be there for his milestones and to see him graduate.“Plus, I have a lot of living yet to do,” she said with a wink.“I’m not ready to leave my husband, he still needs me!” She paused and said,“It’s been a difficult few years, but I know other women have gone through more radical surgery than I had to. My story isn’t as dramatic as other stories, but what matters to me is for women to hear the message repeated over and over: get a mammogram. It’s important; it’s our responsibility to do everything we can to protect our health. That includes regular doctor visits, following the recommended screenings, eating healthy and getting exercise. It all works together and gives the best foundation possible for good health. It matters and I am living proof.” “Today’s advances in medicine and treatment of cancer give people more hope than ever before, but we have to begin fighting early,” said Dr. Ramm. The American Cancer Society recommends women get annual mammograms at the age of 40; reports show that over 182,000 new cases of breast cancer are diagnosed annually. At this time, there are about 2.5 million breast cancer survivors in the United States. For more information, check with your doctor or visit

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LCMH Peds Thrive


9:31 AM

Page 1

Kids don’t come with instructions. That’s why there’s Lake Charles Memorial Pediatrics.

Memorial has more pediatricians on staff and treats more children than any other hospital in Lake Charles. Memorial is the only hospital in Lake Charles that has a Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and a Pediatric Intensive Care Specialist. Memorial’s Emergency Room is staffed with board certified ER doctors that make pediatric emergencies a priority. Memorial for Women’s state-of-the-art, Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit cares for the most critical of newborns.

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Take a Scan for

Better Bone Health by Christine Fisher

For women in their sixties, the risk of breaking a bone increase each year. Declining levels of estrogen make a significant difference in the strength of a woman’s bones. As the years go by, bones naturally become weaker. This change happens silently over a long period of time. Many women are caught unaware that their bones are brittle until they fracture or break a wrist or hip. “Some of my patients tell me they were doing routine things, like gardening, or housecleaning. They lost their footing somehow and fell, and they ended up breaking a bone,” said Scott Bergstedt, ob/gyn specialist with OBG-1. Dr. Bergstedt explained that after menopause, bones weaken each year. In the first five to 10 years after menopause, 25 – 35 percent of bone density can be lost. “It varies from woman to woman, as each individual’s risks determine the likelihood for osteoporosis. Knowing the risk helps women do what they can to boost their bone health and hopefully avoid the pain and hassle that broken bones bring,” he said. Bone density testing helps determine the strength of the bones and the probability of a fracture. It’s a simple, noninvasive procedure that takes a few minutes but can give needed information about bone health. It’s recommended for women 65 years and older, and for anyone with an increased risk of osteoporosis. Some people may confuse bone density testing with a bone scan. They are two very different procedures. Bone scans require an injection of radioactive material in the blood stream for contrast purposes. Bone density scans, or DEXA scans, are available at many physician offices and hospitals. There are some portable types used to scan heels, and give an indication of bone strength. These are known as a peripheral device. While these can give an idea of bone strength, the preferred method of testing bone health is known as a central device, available at physician’s offices and hospitals. The DEXA scan is available at the Lake Charles office of OBG-1. During the test, the patient lies down while a mechanical arm passes over their body, emitting a small amount of radiation; about a tenth of the radiation during an

April 2009

average chest x-ray. It takes about 10 minutes for the test. Results show how the patient compares to other individuals in the same age, race and gender. It calculates any deviation, giving a fairly good idea of overall bone health. As with any kind of health concern, understanding the risk involved is the first step in developing a treatment plan. Some women are at higher risk for osteoporosis. These include:

• slender, small-framed women • Caucasian or of Southeast Asian descent • family history • smoking • consuming excessive alcohol or caffeine • physical inactivity • some medications If a DEXA scan reveals bone weakness, boosting bone health is the key to preventing osteoporosis. “That’s the purpose of having the bone density exam in the first place, to analyze the risk and attempt to avoid further bone loss,” said Dr. Bergstedt. Talk with your doctor about methods to increase bone strength. These may include medications, increased calcium and vitamin D, getting more exercise including weight bearing exercise and eating healthier. Hormone therapy can reduce a woman’s risk of getting osteoporosis, but because of side effects, women should research the associated risks and thoroughly discuss them with her doctor. Utilizing diagnostic technology like the DEXA scan can make a real difference in the quality of life for many people. If an increased risk for osteoporosis is discovered and treated, it can help avoid having to repair a broken bone, and a fractured way of life. To schedule an appointment to learn more about the DEXA scan, call OBG-1 at 312-1000.

Thrive Magazine for Better Living



Spring Cleaning Accidents

The fresh warm air of the new season inspires many people to dive into spring cleaning and yard work, two activities that sound harmless enough, right? In most cases, yes, but according to David Heinin, MD, family physician with Urgent Care – Moss Bluff, some of the activities involved in getting your home and yard freshened up for spring can lead to accidental injury if proper caution isn’t taken. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that accidents with ladders, gardening tools and lawn mowers alone cause hundreds of thousands of injuries a year that require medical attention.“In most cases, these household accidents are preventable,” says Dr. Heinen. “These types of injuries typically occur when people rush or do not follow the proper safety precautions.”

by Kristy Armand

He offers the following suggestion for avoiding preventable injuries during spring cleaning: • Before using products such as cleaners, paints and pesticides, read the label and follow usage directions carefully. Afterward, store all chemicals according to the label directions and make sure they’re out of the reach of children and pets. • Before starting a project, put on proper protective clothing for the task: a hat, gloves or goggles, or anything else appropriate for the job you are doing. • When lifting, carrying or bending, start with your feet shoulder-width apart. Keep your back straight and upright and bend at the knees, while tightening the stomach muscles. Use your legs, not your back, to lift as you stand. And get help with items that are too big, heavy or oddly shaped. • When trying to reach high areas in your house, use a small ladder or sturdy stool rather than risk standing on furniture that could tip or slide. • When using a ladder, always make sure its legs are secure and on a flat, firm surface. Never use a ladder on uneven, soft or wet ground or flooring. Never stand on the very top step and avoid leaning outside the sides of the ladder. • Avoid long periods of repetitive-motion activities, such as raking, digging, pruning, or painting. • Take frequent breaks and replenish fluids to prevent dehydration when working outside. The Clinic’s two Urgent Care Centers in Lake Charles and Moss Bluff provide medical care for minor injuries and illness. Both locations have extended hours on weekdays and are open on weekends.

Thank You for Your United Efforts

This year PPG raised a total of $277,708 for the 2009 United Way campaign. We are, once again, proud of the generosity and support our employees demonstrated for those people in our community who are less fortunate. The success of our campaign would not have been possible without the support of our PPG salaried workers, union committee membership and retiree group. Thank you for your support and contributions!


Identity Index: Symbol (1 of 1)

Symbol: PPG Blue (or Pantone ® 307)

2009 United Way Campaign Committee: (L-R) Genee Derks, Jon Manns, Vickie Parker, Bill Schwarzauer, Dennis Guillory and Wendy Lewis.

hat We Do. Live United. It’s W

Live United – it’s what we do at PPG every day as we work together to improve our productivity and performance, protect the environment, and support our community. 68

File name: SYM307 File types: M / E(2)

Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

Information provided by Robert Guilott, owner of AAA Drive-In Cleaners, a Certifed Garment Care Professional.



Directions? Pack Experience is just Winter aWay around the corner. Spring is in the air and the warm weather means you are reaching for short sleeves instead of sweaters. This is the time of the year that bulky winter clothing loses all appeal and becomes an obstacle as you seek out your lighter, brighter wardrobe options. The best way to handle this closet-space face-off is to free up valuable closet “real estate” by properly storing your off-season clothing. Taking the time to follow a few off-season storage steps now can help ensure that your favorite sweaters, suits and jackets will be ready for their turn in the fashion spotlight when the cool autumn weather arrives later in the year.

• Take a close look at the clothes you are storing. Look for stains, hems

that need repair, loose buttons and other small details that need attention now, not months from now. • Clean clothing before storing. Food and other stains may attract insects that will damage clothing. In addition to attracting pests, stains will oxidize over time and become even more difficult to remove. • Store clean clothes in a clean closet. Take the time to wipe down the walls, shelves and floors of the storage closet before putting clothes inside. • Don’t store out-of-season clothing in an attic or garage that may not have adequate ventilation. • Remove just-cleaned garments from plastic dry-cleaning bags, and hang clothing so that air can circulate around clean clothes. • Most garments benefit from being folded, rather than hung, for storage. This is especially true for sweaters, whose shape can distort when hung for long periods of time. Rather than tightly folding items, lay flat or gently roll to avoid awkward creasing or folds. Remove dry cleaned items from plastic, and wrap folded items in acid-free tissue paper, especially if storing in plastic tubs. Unused suitcases also make great storage cases. • Storing clothing in cardboard boxes is not recommended for longterm storage. The cardboard may attract insects, and fabrics may absorb the acids from the storage box, causing a permanent change in color. • Check stored clothing periodically for any dampness or insects. • Mothballs are not recommended. They are toxic to children, and adults shouldn’t touch them either. The smell is also difficult to remove. Remember, the care you take when you’re storing your clothes away may not seem that important now when you are eager for spring and summer attire, but it will have a big effect on how your cold-weather clothing will look when you take need it next season. April 2009

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living


The Power of

by Erin K. Cormier


Amy and Ricky Nyberg get some strange looks when they preach the benefits of wheatgrass to people in Lake Charles. Although some have heard of it, others are skeptical. According to Amy, reactions range from disgusted faces to people who think it’s a great idea.

The Nybergs first learned of wheatgrass through Pure Foods and Health, a natural health store at 138 W. Prien Lake Road. Pure Foods offers a broad selection of natural and organic foods, natural supplements, nutritional seminars and cooking classes. After the Nybergs heard of the health benefits of wheatgrass, they were among the open-minded who thought it sounded like a great idea. According to Amy, it was. “Within minutes of taking the wheatgrass, we feel more energy and have an overall sense of well-being. We also are experiencing less cold and allergy symptoms, and my husband believes it has helped with his blood sugar,” Amy said. The Nybergs have grown two trays of wheatgrass a week for about two months. The grass is cut fresh and crushed in a hand juicer, which produces about an ounce and half of “a pretty green juice that you drink right away,” Amy said.

According to Shively Lampson, who owns Pure Foods with her husband Dr. Gene Lampson, wheatgrass has at least 35 known uses. Among them: The ability to provide strength, health, spirituality and well-being, relieve sore throats, reduce high blood pressure, and aid with digestion. “Wheatgrass is packed with chlorophyll, and Dr. Brischer, a research scientist, has called chlorophyll ‘concentrated sun power’ that increases the function of the heart, affects the vascular system, the uterus, the intestines and the lungs,” Shively said. Because the juice removes toxins from the body and gives iron to the blood, wheatgrass juice is also considered a natural way to aid circulation and help reduce blood pressure, according to Shively. She doesn’t recommend that suffers of high blood pressure nix their medicine, but instead suggests that they drink wheatgrass juice in addition to their other prescribed treatment. According to Shively, wheatgrass is also noted for purifying the blood, neutralizing toxins in the body, and beautifying the skin. “Many people are skeptical about the effectiveness of natural foods to aid personal health, but the only way to know for sure is to try it. You may be surprised,” Shively said. The Nybergs echoed that suggestion. She said many people are curious about the taste of wheatgrass, and are usually pleasantly surprised.“Some people think it’s strange, but when they try it, they are surprised by how good it makes them feel and it doesn’t taste as bad as they thought it would,” Amy said. For more information on the health benefits of wheatgrass, or information on how you can grow or purchase it, contact Pure Foods and Health at 905-7873.

Follow the Beat to Lafayette Under the direction of Cardiac Electrophysiologist William Bailey,MD, Louisiana Heart Rhythm Specialists offers a comprehensive range of treatment for heart rhythm disorders, including pacemakers, internal cardiac defibrillators (ICDs), specialized diagnostic testing, catheter-based interventions and medication management. Dr. Bailey is one of only a few cardiac electrophysiologists in the state, and he is recognized nationally and internationally as a leading expert in the field of cardiac electrophysiology. He has served as a principle investigator for numerous clinical device trials and has been instrumental in the development of new pacemaker and ICD technology. For more information about appointments and services, or if you need assistance with transferring your medical records, call Louisiana Heart Rhythm Specialists at (337) 233-PACE, or visit

(337) 233-PACE 7223

913 S. College Rd., Ste. 103 Lafayette


Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

accounted for over 50 percent of all personal bankruptcies. This has increased 2200 percent between 1982 and 2001. A Harvard study published in the August 2003 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine found that 31 percent of private insurance premiums go for administrative costs. Meanwhile, the administrative costs for Medicare are only 3 percent. from the Calcasieu Parish Medical Society

Health Care Crisis contributed by Dr. Barbara Tomek There is a crisis in our country. No, not the financial crisis everyone is talking about. It is a health care crisis. Most of this column comes from an article in my recent issue of Diagnostic Imaging written by Dr. Eric Trefelner on health care reform. In 2007, we spent $7439 per person on healthcare, or almost 16 percent of gross domestic product. That’s the highest per-person expenditure in the world, and yet we rank 37th out of 191 countries in overall health performance according to the World Health Organization. This is right after Costa Rica--but before Slovenia! It is 72nd in overall level of health. We rank only 46th for life expectancy in the CIA World Factbook. The Scandinavian countries spend about $2500 per person per year and rank near the top of the list.

Some of you may be aware that Dr. William McGuire, the CEO of United Healthcare, made $125 million a year with stock options of $1.6 billion dollars. That money had to come from somewhere. My guess is it was from the premiums paid. Many doctors take care of patients in the emergency room and hospital where more than a third of their patients have no insurance. All that work goes unpaid. Yet any doctor can still be sued for malpractice--while doing work for free! This does not seem particularly fair. What other private business in the U.S. is forced to provide free services to anyone who wants them? Just try that at Wal-Mart or McDonald’s and you will become intimate friends with their security personnel and the police department. Health care may not be a right, but it is a necessity. I don’t know what the answer will be and I am confident that Congress will make a mess of it all. But we must do something. People are going without health care, becoming sicker, and dying.


The October issue of Archives of Surgery had an article that was quite disturbing. It was entitled “Race and Insurance Status as Risk Factors for Trauma Mortality.” This study demonstrated that an uninsured trauma victim, when compared with a victim who had insurance of the same sex, age, and severity of injury, is 50 percent more likely to die than one who is insured. If you are black and uninsured, you are 78 percent more likely to die than an insured white person. For Hispanics, the figure is 130 percent.

Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics Accepting Most Insurances New Patient Appointments can be made in the same week

There are a variety of reasons why this may be, but the most disturbing possibility is that patients who don’t have insurance are not treated the same way even in the hospital, which may be result of bias. This seems wrong.

CaLL todaY to schedule your appointment!

Also wrong is a woman diagnosed with breast cancer who loses her insurance and can never get coverage for the necessary chemotherapy from a new insurer due to the cancer being a “preexisting condition.” The same often applies to children and adults with diabetes, asthma, or any chronic medical problem. Since 2001, health care insurance premiums have gone up 78 percent, while inflation has risen only 17 percent. By the peak of this recession, it is estimated that as many as 50 million people may have no medical insurance. This is up from the 46 million now. That figure includes more than 10 million children. TEN MILLION. Can you even imagine how many children this means? And these numbers do not include the even larger pool of the underinsured. Before the current recession, medical expenses, not mortgage payments,

April 2009

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Thrive Magazine for Better Living

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LAKE CHARLES: 1890 W. GAUTHIER ROAD, SUITE 110 • SULPHUR: 1200 STELLY LANE Thrive Magazine for Better Living

April 2009

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