Wellness Wednesdays – 3/7/18
Wellness Wednesdays is a MVMag.net-exclusive feature that curates the best health & wellness content from around the Valley and the web.
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WELLNESS TIP OF THE WEEK
Doctor Q&A: Food Allergies
The answer to today’s Doctor Q&A is provided by John Hein, MD, of Pentucket Medical Associates.
Q: I’ve read about a cure for food allergies. Does this actually work?
A: Well, it depends on the type of food someone is allergic to.
Recently, there has been information in the press about advances in peanut allergy treatment. Researchers are currently studying the effects of giving multiple small doses of peanut in attempt to cure the allergy. Although this therapy may work in some patients, the rate of treatment-related side effects is quite high. Even in patients who respond positively to this treatment, it is unclear if their desensitized state will be maintained for long periods of time. Due to the high rate of side effects and unclear duration of improvement, desensitization therapy for peanut allergy is not currently the standard of care. Allergists continue to recommend avoidance of peanut consumption if a patient has peanut allergy.
On the other hand, allergies to fruits and vegetables have a more promising prognosis. Many patients who undergo two or more years of pollen desensitization or “allergy shots” report an improvement in their fruit and vegetable allergy.
HEALTH IN THE VALLEY
Top 10 Nutrition Myths Debunked: A Lecture at Cedardale Andover
In celebration of March being National Nutrition Month Cedardale Andover will be hosting a nutrition lecture open to the public on Monday, March 12 from 6 – 7 p.m. and again on Tuesday, March 13 from 9 – 10 a.m. Cedardale’s own Registered Dietitian Samantha McCarthy will be debunking her top 10 nutrition myths.
Myths on the agenda to be debunked:
1. All carbs are bad
2. Wheat is bad and we should all eat gluten-free
3. Diet beverages and artificial sweeteners are healthier
4. Dairy is bad for you and we should only use diary alternatives
5. Low fat is the key to weight loss
6. Eggs raise our cholesterol
7. Soy is full of hormones and should be avoided
8. “Natural” means healthier
9. You should not eat after 7:00 p.m.
10. To lose weight, we just need to cut calories and burn more.
The lecture is free and open to the public. Space is limited, so please call Cedardale Andover’s front desk at (978) 373-1596 to register for one of the lecture time slots.
WELLNESS AROUND THE WEB
Why Did Teens’ Depression Symptoms Surge Over the Years of 2010 to 2015?
According to psychologist Jean Twenge, writing for IFLScience, the number of American teenagers who reported feeling “useless and joyless” increased 33 percent over the five year span between 2010 and 2015, and the the number of teens between 13 and 18 who commit suicide went up a heartbreaking 31 percent. Why such a massive increase, according to Twenge? Well, she thinks it has to do with those little devices we call smartphones.
In that five-year span, Twenge says, smartphone use and teens’ depression symptoms increased simultaneously. In addition, a study found that “teens who spent five or more hours a day online were 71 percent more likely than those who spent less than an hour a day to have at least one suicide risk factor.” Other studies to come out at the time indicated a significant relationship between social media use and unhappiness.
“The downside to limiting screen time – say, to two hours a day or less – is minimal,” writes Twenge. “In contrast, the downside to doing nothing – given the possible consequences of depression and suicide – seems, to me, quite high.”
LOCAL HEALTH HAPPENINGS
The third and final run of the Wild Rover race series is the Dudley’s Wild Clover 5-Miler, featuring a beautiful course leaving from Dudley’s and passing through the neighborhoods of the Upper Belvidere section of Lowell. Lowell, Mass. | RunTheWildRover.com
Merrimack Valley Hospice is offering a Grief Support Group for Men, specifically for men who are grieving the loss of a loved one. The group will run for 16 weeks through June 26 and held in a meeting room at the Haverhill Crossings Assisted Living Residence. Haverhill, Mass. | (978) 552-4510
Come out and run the Citizens Bank Shamrock Half-Marathon & Relay in Manchester, N.H. All finishers will receive a finishers’ medal, and the first 1,500 to register will receive a free hoodie T-shirt. Looking to add some bling to your collection? Get your Irish on and tackle the Golden Shamrock Challenge. Manchester, N.H. | MillenniumRunning.com