Hannibal Regional Blog

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Our blog offers content about healthcare, healthy living and the culture at Hannibal Regional.


A New Meaning to Spring Cleaning

Vegetable ShoppingAfter a long winter, we often revive our home with a good spring cleaning. So why not do the same for our body with our eating habits? We all know that fruits and vegetables are good for us, yet most of us fall short of the recommended 5-9 servings per day. The simplicity of the produce section is something that no other section of the store has. Every item comes "as is", and is in its whole form. Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables may reduce risk of heart disease, including heart attack and stroke, as well as protect against certain types of cancers. Fruits and vegetables are full of fiber, which helps maintain proper bowel function and reduce blood cholesterol levels. They are packed with many essential nutrients, minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants. The impact of fruit and vegetable consumption on our health is pretty remarkable.  Improving our eating habits can be hard, so if you currently don’t eat many fruits and vegetables, start by adding just 1 serving of a fruit and 1 serving of a vegetable to each day (1 orange with lunch, 1/2 cup sugar snap peas for a snack; ). Gradually increase the number of servings you eat per day to at least 2 fruits and 3 vegetables. Spring clean your diet by choosing more from the produce section.

 

What counts as a serving?

1 medium piece of fruit= baseball size

½ cup fresh, frozen or canned fruit

¼ cup dried fruit

½ cup 100% fruit juice

1 cup leafy greens or raw veggies

½ cup fresh, frozen or canned vegetables

½ cup 100% vegetable juice

 


Fruit and Vegetable Challenge

Fruits and Vegetables HannibalFruit and Vegetable Challenge

The past several articles have been all about the benefits of fruit and vegetable consumption. Challenge yourself to eat more fruits and vegetables! Cut out the chart below and hang it on your fridge for 1 week. Choose more fruit and vegetables with meals, or as a snack, and check off the serving eaten as you go! Can you meet the recommended 5-9 servings a day?

 

1 piece fruit

1 piece fruit

½-1 cup veg.

½-1 cup veg.

½-1 cup veg.

Monday

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday

 

 

 

 

 

Wednesday

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday

 

 

 

 

 

Friday

 

 

 

 

 

Saturday

 

 

 

 

 

Sunday

 

 

 

 

 

 

What counts as a serving?

1 medium piece of fruit= baseball size

½ cup fresh, frozen or canned fruit

¼ cup dried fruit

½ cup 100% fruit juice

1 cup leafy greens or raw veggies

½ cup fresh, frozen or canned vegetables

½ cup 100% vegetable juice


Avoiding Swimmer Foot Problems

Hannibal Foot CareSwimming is typically thought of as a summer activity, but if you’re a regular or competitive swimmer, you aren’t confined to just those few months. Indoor pools makes it possible for you to be in the water all year round, allowing you to stay in shape and enjoy the sport of swimming.

Although swimming is a low-impact activity, you could still experience foot or ankle pain. Swimmers need healthy feet to push them through the water and foot or ankle pain could be just as debilitating to a swimmer as any other athlete. There are many ways that swimmers put a strain on their feet and ankles - jumping off the blocks, pushing off the walls with flip turns, and the constant pointing and flexing of your toes. Those who have experienced foot cramps while swimming can understand their crippling effects. Some common foot and ankle issues that swimmers face are: tendonitis on the top of the foot and in the Achilles which could lead to heel issues, pain on top of the foot, and ankle discomfort. All pools, both indoor and outdoor, can be perfect environments for infections like athlete’s foot and fungal nails to take root.

You can avoid these foot problems by taking care of your feet:

  • Stretch and warm up
  • Condition your feet 
  • Exercising on land as well as in the pool will build up the strength of your feet
  • Don’t walk barefoot
  • Use antifungal precautions
  • Dry off your feet immediately, treat with antifungal spray, and wear clean socks

When you invest in the care of your feet, you are less likely to end up with foot and ankle problems or even unpleasant infections of the toes. However, if you do experience any kind of pain or discomfort when you are swimming or notice an infection flaring up, call Dr. Cline at Hannibal Regional Medical Group, (573) 629-3500.


Food Waste and The Environment

Food Waste HannibalMany consumers are concerned about the use of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s), antibiotic use in animals, and whether to buy organic vs non-organic. Many worry about certain diseases, cancer and illness. Yet very few of us consider the amount of wasted food in our world on a given day and the consequences that follow. An estimated 9 million people die each year (1 every 4 seconds) due to hunger and malnutrition. Approximately 1 billion people don’t have enough food. In 2010, 48.8 million Americans lived in food-insecure households. Yet the statistics on food waste are environmentally, morally and economically outrageous.

The Waste:
• An estimated 1.3 billion tons of edible food is wasted worldwide
• In the USA, approximately 40% of the food supply is wasted, equaling more than 20 pounds of food per person per month.
• In 2010, nearly 34 million tons of food was wasted in the USA - enough to fill the Empire State Building 91 times.
• Fruits and vegetables, along with roots and potatoes have the highest wastage rate (yet the average person does not consume the recommended amount of fruits/vegetables).
• Annually, consumers in rich countries waste almost as much food as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa
• A single restaurant in the U.S. can produce approximately 25,000 to 75,000 pounds of food waste in a year
• In processing New York City’s waste alone, garbage trucks make 250,000 trips throughout the city and the same number of long hauls out of state…the average garbage truck, with its frequent stops and idling, gets about 3 miles per gallon.
• “A more recent estimate by Kevin Hall, a researcher at the National Institute of Health, found that a quarter of the food we squander would provide three meals per day for 43 million people. What’s more, it would yield enough to lift 430 million Americans, out of hunger.”
• Worldwide, we are estimated to grow by 2-2.5 billion by 2050, that’s an increase of 75million people a year. We all need to eat, and need an estimated 60-80% more food by 2050. People worry how agriculture is going to feed our growing population, when so many are already starving. Rather than waiting on an answer, maybe we should look at our food waste instead?

The Cost:
• Food losses and waste amounts to roughly $680 billion in industrialized countries and $310 billion in developing countries.
• Food loss costs a family of four at least $589.76 annually.

The Environment:
• Food waste leaves a big carbon footprint, an estimated 3.3 billion tons of CO2 equivalent of greenhouse gas released into the atmosphere each year. This contributes to global warming and climate change
• Food waste that goes to the landfill breaks down anaerobically and produces methane; methane is 21 times more potent than CO2 as a greenhouse gas.
• Every ton of food wasted results in 3.8 tons of greenhouse gas emissions.
• Food waste means inefficiently used water, land and energy, which in turn leads to a diminished natural ecosystem and the services provided by.
• Less than 3% of food waste was composted in 2010. (Environmental Protection Agency). Is this as good as we can do?

References: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Economic Research Services, USDA Economic Research Service, FaceTheFactsUSA.org, Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP), Green Restaurant Association, American Wasteland, Environmental Protection Agency, University of Arizona


Organic Food

Certified Organic

Organic Food

The Statistics

• 8 out of 10 parents purchase organic products “at least sometimes,” according to a 2013 survey by the Organic Trade Association (OTA), and fresh produce is the leading category of organic purchases.
• Organic food sales make up about 4% of the $760 billion annual food sales in the U.S., according to an industry survey conducted for the OTA by Nutrition Business Journal.
• In 2014, 51% of parents surveyed by the OTA said that cost limited their organic purchases.

Why Shop Organic?

Organic shoppers are typically health conscious and convinced that organic foods and beverages “are healthier”. Also fueling the organic trend is the concern about the environment, interest in where food comes from, how the food was grown, and the desire for “clean eating”. There is a growing population of people who like to see environment-friendly companies/industries, and offering organic foods is one way that companies get that reputation.

The Truth about Organics

• The “USDA Organic” designation refers to a unique set of sourcing, growing, harvesting and processing methods, and does not mean that a product is healthful, more nutrient-dense or safer.
• The term “organic” is often misinterpreted. Many consumers assume that “organic” means “nutritious,” or “more nutritious” than conventional foods when this is not always the case. For every study that says organic food is nutritionally superior, there’s another study that says the differences are insignificant. There are several variables that can impact the nutritional composition of food crops, such as variations from field to field and growing season to growing season.
• In 2014, 51% of parents surveyed by the OTA said that cost limited their organic purchases. As a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, affordability is a big factor when discussing appropriate food choices with patients/clients. Consuming the recommended amount of nutritious conventional foods such as fruits and vegetables is more beneficial and far more important than consuming a limited amount of organic fruits and vegetables. For example, 1 serving of organic fruit may be 2-3 times the cost of 1 serving of conventional fruit, thus a household with a limited food budget would likely consume less produce if recommended to buy organic.
• It is important to note that organic potato chips still contain calories, fat and sodium, and organic cookies still contains calories, fat and added sugar.
Just because it is organic, does not mean it is healthy, and just because it is non-organic does not mean it is not healthy.
• Pro Organic: Organic foods are often locally grown and support small families which is both healthful and environmentally friendly! Organic foods may offer many benefits to your health but do your homework first and know who you are buying your food from and where it was grown (preferably the USA)!
• Take home message: choose more whole foods and less processed foods, choose more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meats and low fat dairy, regardless of whether they are organic or not.