Thursday, July 30, 2009

Green Tea

This fact sheet provides basic information about green tea—common names, uses, potential side effects, and resources for more information. All types of tea (green, black, and oolong) are produced from the Camellia sinensis plant using different methods. Fresh leaves from the Camellia sinensis plant are steamed to produce green tea.

Common Names-green tea, Chinese tea, Japanese tea

What It Is Used For

  • Green tea and green tea extracts, such as its component EGCG, have been used to prevent and treat a variety of cancers, including breast, stomach, and skin cancers.
  • Green tea and green tea extracts have also been used for improving mental alertness, aiding in weight loss, lowering cholesterol levels, and protecting skin from sun damage.
How It Is Used

Green tea is usually brewed and drunk as a beverage. Green tea extracts can be taken in capsules and are sometimes used in skin products.

What the Science Says
  • Laboratory studies suggest that green tea may help protect against or slow the growth of certain cancers, but studies in people have shown mixed results.
  • Some evidence suggests that the use of green tea preparations improves mental alertness, most likely because of its caffeine content. There are not enough reliable data to determine whether green tea can aid in weight loss, lower blood cholesterol levels, or protect the skin from sun damage.
  • Green tea and their effects on conditions such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

Side Effects and Cautions

  • Green tea is safe for most adults when used in moderate amounts.
  • There have been some case reports of liver problems in people taking concentrated green tea extracts. This problem does not seem to be connected with green tea infusions or beverages. Although these cases are very rare and the evidence is not definitive, experts suggest that concentrated green tea extracts be taken with food, and that people should discontinue use and consult a heath care practitioner if they have a liver disorder or develop symptoms of liver trouble, such as abdominal pain, dark urine, or jaundice.
  • Green tea and green tea extracts contain caffeine. Caffeine can cause insomnia, anxiety, irritability, upset stomach, nausea, diarrhea, or frequent urination in some people.
  • Green tea contains small amounts of vitamin K, which can make anticoagulant drugs, such as warfarin, less effective.
  • Tell your health care providers about any complementary and alternative practices you use. Give them a full picture of what you do to manage your health. This will help ensure coordinated and safe care.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Finding a Balance

Weight is a result of caloric balance. If we eat more calories than we use, we gain weight. If we eat less calories than we use, we lose weight. Obesity may be the most frequent chronic disease that we have in front of us and it's important because it's a major contributor to other diseases like cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

To support efforts to help individuals achieve this balance and to provide insights into ways in which communities can be involved, CDC-TV has just released a new video in its "Health Matters" series "Finding a Balance" providing expert perspectives on caloric or "energy" balance and personal stories of how individuals have made changes in their lives to achieve this balance.

New "Health Matters" features are released each month, and each are produced in collaboration with subject matter experts within CDC's Centers, Institutes and Offices. Features will also provide links to other online resources for each topic where viewers can find more information. These programs will provide insights into each topic, information about research or programs from CDC, and ideas on how viewers might address the issue. Other CDC-TV content will include PSA's, and innovative content such as the animated "Eyes of the Eagle" book series.

Providing short, high-quality videos is part of CDC's goal to increase people's access to the information necessary to help prevent illness, injury and to protect their health and that of their families. Collectively, these and other resources contribute to CDC's efforts supporting a larger effort by staff and partners to lead America toward being the Healthiest Nation.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Keep Your Cool in Hot Weather

Getting too hot can make you sick. You can become ill from the heat if your body can't compensate for it and properly cool you off. Heat exposure can even kill you: it caused 8,015 deaths in the United States from 1979 to 2003.

These are the main things affecting your body's ability to cool itself during extremely hot weather:

  • High humidity. When the humidity is high, sweat won't evaporate as quickly, which keeps your body from releasing heat as fast as it may need to.
  • Personal factors. Age, obesity, fever, dehydration, heart disease, mental illness, poor circulation, sunburn, and prescription drug and alcohol use can play a role in whether a person can cool off enough in very hot weather.

Here are some facts about which people are at greatest risk for heat-related illness and what protective actions to take to prevent illness or death:

  • People who are at highest risk are the elderly, the very young, and people with mental illness and chronic diseases
  • But even young and healthy people can get sick from the heat if they participate in strenuous physical activities during hot weather.
  • Air-conditioning is the number one protective factor against heat-related illness and death. If a home is not air-conditioned, people can reduce their risk for heat-related illness by spending time in public facilities that are air-conditioned.

You can take these steps to prevent heat-related illnesses, injuries, and deaths during hot weather:
  • Stay cool indoors.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Replace salt and minerals.
  • Wear appropriate clothing and sunscreen.
  • Schedule outdoor activities carefully.
  • Pace yourself.
  • Use a buddy system.
  • Monitor people at high risk.
  • Adjust to the environment.
  • Do not leave children in cars.
  • Use common sense.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Healthy Aging

The United States is on the brink of a longevity revolution. By 2030, the proportion of the U.S. population aged 65 and older will double to about 71 million older adults, or one in every five Americans. The far-reaching implications of the increasing number of older Americans and their growing diversity will include unprecedented demands on public health, aging services, and the nation's health care system.

Chronic diseases exact a particularly heavy health and economic burden on older adults due to associated long-term illness, diminished quality of life, and greatly increased health care costs. Although the risk of disease and disability clearly increases with advancing age, poor health is not an inevitable consequence of aging.

Much of the illness, disability, and death associated with chronic disease is avoidable through known prevention measures. Key measures include practicing a healthy lifestyle (e.g., regular physical activity, healthy eating, and avoiding tobacco use) and the use of early detection practices (e.g., screening for breast, cervical, and colorectal cancers, diabetes and its complications, and depression).

Critical knowledge gaps exist for responding to the health needs of older adults. For chronic diseases and conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, arthritis, depression, psychiatric disorders, osteoporosis, Parkinson's disease, and urinary incontinence, much remains to be learned about their distribution in the population, associated risk factors, and effective measures to prevent or delay their onset.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Improve Your Ability to do Daily Activities and Prevent Falls

A functional limitation is a loss of the ability to do everyday activities such as climbing stairs, grocery shopping, or playing with your grandchildren.

How does this relate to physical activity?

If you're a physically active middle-aged or older adult, you have a lower risk of functional limitations than people who are inactive

Already have trouble doing some of your everyday activities?

Aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities can help improve your ability to do these types of tasks.

Are you an older adult who is at risk for falls?

Research shows that doing balance and muscle-strengthening activities each week along with moderate-intensity aerobic activity, like brisk walking, can help reduce your risk of falling.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Women Need 400 Micrograms of Folic Acid Every Day

The B vitamin folic acid helps prevent birth defects. If a woman has enough folic acid in her body before and while she is pregnant, her baby is less likely to have a major birth defect of the brain or spine.

What Is Folic Acid?

Folic acid is a B vitamin. Our bodies use it to make new cells. Everyone needs folic acid. But for women who can get pregnant, it is really important! If a woman has enough folic acid in her body before she is pregnant, it can help prevent major birth defects of her baby's brain and spine. These birth defects are neural tube defects or NTDs. Women need to take folic acid every day, starting before they are pregnant to help prevent NTDs.

CDC and the US Public Health Service urge every woman who could become pregnant to get 400 micrograms (400 mcg) of synthetic folic acid every day.

How Much Is Enough? Look for 100% Daily Value (DV)

One easy way a woman can be sure she is getting enough folic acid is to take a vitamin that has folic acid in it every day. Folic acid pills and most multivitamins sold in the United States have 100% of the daily value (DV) of folic acid; check the label to be sure.You can get your vitamin with folic acid in one of several ways. You can take a multivitamin or a small, single supplement of folic acid. These days, multivitamins with folic acid come in chewable chocolate or fruit flavors, liquids, and large oval or smaller round pills. Many stores offer a single folic acid supplement for just pennies a day.

Another good choice is a store brand multivitamin, which includes most of the vitamins you need each day. Unless your doctor suggests a special type, you do not need to choose among vitamins for women or active people, or even to go with a low carbohydrate diet. A basic multivitamin meets the needs of most women.

Another way to get enough is to eat a serving of breakfast cereal every day that has been enriched with 100% of the daily value of folic acid. Not every cereal has this amount. Check the label on the side of the box, and look for one that has "100%" next to folic acid.

When Should a Woman Start Taking Folic Acid?

These birth defects of the brain and spine happen in the first few weeks of pregnancy, often before a woman finds out that she is pregnant. All women should get in the habit of taking folic acid daily even when they are not planning to get pregnant. For folic acid to help, a woman needs to take it every day, starting before she becomes pregnant.

Folic Acid: All Women, Every Day

You might think that you can get all the folic acid and other vitamins you need from the food you eat each day. But it is hard to eat a diet that has all the nutrients you need every day. Even with careful planning, you might not get all the vitamins you need from your diet alone. That's why it's important to take a vitamin with folic acid every day.

Today's woman is busy! You know that you should exercise, eat right, and get enough sleep. You might wonder how you can fit another thing into your day. But it only takes a few seconds to take a vitamin to get all the folic acid you need!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Kids Gym

With Toddler Gym, Kindy Gym, Advanced Kindy Gym, Junior Gym, Primary Gym and Advanced Primary Gym classes for kids aged 1½ to 10 years, you're sure to find a Kids Gym class to add some zing to your child's day.

Benefits of Kids Gym

  • Increase confidence & independence
  • Develops coordination, balance & motor skills
  • It's great fun
  • Lets kids use their energy
  • Increases fitness
  • Improves muscle tone & flexibility
Children are taught by qualified gymnastics coaches in the purpose build WA Institute of Sports Training Centre at VenuesWest Challenge Stadium.

Toddler Gym - 1½ to 3 years

Toddler Gym introduces kids to gymnastics. Children have fun while learning the fundamentals of tumbling, balance and coordination with the support of a parent or guardian.Toddler Gym classes run for 45 minutes.

Kindy Gym - 3 to 4 years

Kindy Gym has been developed for children who are physically and emotionally ready to progress to the next level without the hands on support of a parent or guardian. Kids continue to develop their gymnastics skills, confidence and independence.Kindy Gym classes run for 60 minutes.

Advanced Kindy Gym - 4 to 5 years

Advanced Kindy Gym provides more complex instruction to further develop kid's gymnastics skills and use of the gymnastic apparatus. Advanced Kindy Gym classes run for 60 minutes.

Junior Gym - 5 to 6 years

Junior Gym is a vigorous and energetic class which expands on fundamental gymnastics movements and provides a stepping stone into formal Gymnastics training.Junior Gym classes are 60 minutes long.

Primary Gym - 7 to 8 years NEW CLASS

Primary gym
classes will increase your child's knowledge of gymnastics and develop their strength, coordination and conditioning using fundamental gymnastics movements.

Advanced Primary Gym - 9 to 10 years NEW CLASS

These classes will enhance your child's gymnastics skills in a social environment with children of their own age.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Health and Safety Tips for Summer Camp

Get your kids vaccinated.

Be sure your kids' vaccinations are up-to-date. Ask their doctor or nurse what vaccines are recommended for summer camp.

Encourage safe physical activities.

Children should get 60 minutes or more of physical activity on most days of the week. To help prevent injury, pack protective gear, such as helmets and life jackets, if the camp will not be providing them. Tell your kids not to swim if they are alone or if they have diarrhea.

Teach your kids to stay hydrated.

Explain to your kids that the human body needs fluids on a regular basis. They shouldn't wait until they feel thirsty to drink water. Encourage your kids to drink plenty of non-carbonated, sugar-free fluids throughout the day.

Teach your kids to avoid wild animals.

Teach kids that animals can carry diseases that are dangerous to people. Encourage them to enjoy watching them from a safe distance in their natural surroundings.

Pack protection.

Be sure your kids have plenty of insect repellent and sunscreen to wear to protect themselves from mosquitoes, ticks, and the sun. Pack layers of light-weight, light-colored clothes for hot days and blankets and warm clothes for cool nights.

Be proactive.

Find out how you will be notified if your child becomes ill and what the procedures are for caring for your child, if indicated. Teach your kids to cover their nose and mouth with a tissue when they cough or sneeze and to throw the tissue in the trash after using it; to wash their hands often with soap and water (or alcohol-based hand cleaners), especially after they cough or sneeze; and to avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth. Also, tell your kids to notify camp staff if they or someone they come into contact with becomes ill.

Prepare your kids.

Make sure your kids are prepared. Teach them what to do in an emergency.Use this packing checklist to help start them out on the right foot at camp.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Water Safety

Protect the Ones You Love from Drowning

When we're enjoying time at the pool or beach, water safety may not always be the first thing on our minds. Yet, staying safe enables us to enjoy ourselves to the fullest-especially when it comes to protecting kids. Drowning is a leading cause of injury death for young children ages 1 to 4.

Put Water Safety First

We all want to help our children live to their full potential and keep them safe and secure. Thankfully, parents can play a key role in protecting the children they love from drowning. Here are some good first steps:

Fence it off. Install a four–sided isolation fence, with self–closing and self–latching gates, around backyard swimming pools. This can help keep children away from the area when a parent cannot supervise them. Pool fences should completely separate the house and play area from the pool.

Make life jackets a "must." Make sure kids wear life jackets in and around natural bodies of water, such as lakes or the ocean, even if they know how to swim.

Learn CPR. Learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and get recertified every two years. Immediate CPR can help a child stay alive and reduce the chance of brain damage.

Be on the look out. Supervise young children at all times around bathtubs, swimming pools, ponds, lakes, and other bodies of water.

Adults watching kids near water should avoid distracting activities like playing cards, reading books, or talking on the phone.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

A new world record for folding micro-ships in Germany

Peter Koppen of Germany holds one of the 12 paper ships, made from 5.5 by 8 millimetre paper sheets, he folded during the Impossibility Challenger in Dachau, north of Munich, June 21, 2009.

Koppen, 61, set a new world record by folding the 12 micro-ships in a time of 22 minutes and 5 seconds. The 15th annual Impossibility Challenger, where competitors attempt to break or make new World Records in unconventional and unusual disciplines, was held on Sunday.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Largest Petroleum Producing Country

Saudi Arabia is the world's largest producer and exporter of total petroleum liquids and is currently the world's second largest crude oil producer behind Russia. Saudi Arabia's economy remains heavily dependent on oil and petroleum-related industries, including petrochemicals and petroleum refining. The International Monetary Fund reported that in 2006, the last available data, oil export revenues accounted for around 90 percent of total Saudi export earnings and state revenues and above 40 percent of the country's gross domestic product (GDP).

Saudi Arabia's hydrocarbon sector operations are dominated by the state-owned oil company, Saudi Aramco. Saudi Aramco is the world's largest oil company in terms of proven or "booked" reserves and production of hydrocarbons. In addition, Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources and the Supreme Council for Petroleum and Minerals has oversight of the sector and Saudi Aramco directly. The Supreme Council, which is comprised of members of the royal family, industry leaders and government ministers, is responsible for petroleum and natural gas policy-making, including contract review, as well as Saudi Aramco's strategic planning. The Ministry is responsible for national planning in the area of energy and minerals, including petrochemicals.

Energy Consumption

Saudi Arabia is the fastest growing consumer of energy in the Middle East, particularly in the area of transportation fuels. Domestic consumption growth has been spurred by the economic boom due to historically high oil prices and large fuel subsidies. In 2005, Saudi Arabia was the 15th largest consumer of total primary energy, of which 60 percent was petroleum-based. The remainder was made up of natural gas, the growth of which has been limited by supply constraints.