Saturday, May 24, 2014

Pediatrics, Obesity, Sugar and Water

RD Internship update: 
Finally through with ICU!
And, I have found my niche:
So, why is my pediatrics rotation only two weeks long
while my ICU rotation four?
When I first started the RD Internship, I would have told you that I am dreading pediatrics! I thought I was a whimp - I thought I would lose it in front of a small child who was giving it their all to fight some disease, and struggling to make it in life. 
Not true! 
Turns out, I'm not that whimpy!
And so what if I am - as long as I can hold it together while I'm talking to a doctor, parent, and most importantly, a small child. This week I have seen doctors lose it - behind closed doors, of course. I didn't know this about doctors - but then again, the doctors that I am working with are amazing! And so are the nurses! And the cherry on top: So is my preceptor! 
All around, my Pediatrics rotation is turning out to be a great experience!
Last Friday, I gave a presentation on 10 Healthy Eating Behaviors at the annual meeting for a regional Head Start Program. There were a few statistics that I read during this presentation that had them raising their hands asking, "Can you say that again?" 
I thought I would share them here:
  • Eating seven or more portions of fruit and vegetables a day reduces your risk of death at any point in time by 42 percent compared to eating less than one portion. 
  • For every soft drink or sugar-sweetened beverage a child drinks every day, their obesity risk appears to jump 60%.
  • People who consume sugary drinks regularly (1 to 2 cans a day or more) have a 26% greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes than people who rarely have such drinks.
  • A study that followed 40,000 men for two decades found that those who averaged one can of a sugary beverage per day had a 20% higher risk of having a heart attack or dying from a heart attack than men who rarely consumed sugary drinks.
  • A related study in women found a similar sugary beverage–heart disease link.
Drink water, instead!

Hey, we are headed into the warmer months, we need to focus on drinking water anyway – especially if you're active 'cause water helps to boost energy levels, eliminate wastes from our body, and helps our skin to look younger. 
Water ... STAT!
The best part about water ~
 (if your not buying expensive bottled water)
it’s calorie-free and it's inexpensive!
I have to admit, I'm not a big water drinker - I need to add something to water to make it more palatable. Here are some tips that have helped me form some good water-drinking habits:
  • Drink water as soon as you get up in the morning. Yup - even pre-coffee! In the morning, I'll add a lemon wedge to help stick to this habit.
  • Add some flavor: When I run at the track, I mix in a little organic coconut water with my water for a bit of flavor and electrolytes. At night, I'll mix about 4 oz of juice (cranberry or orange) to 12 oz of water.
  • Mid afternoon snack attacks got you down? Go for some water - sometimes we misread signs of thirst and think we are hungry!
  • Keep water everywhere. I'm a big fan of the Kleen Kanteen. Stash those bottles full of water in your car, gym bag, desk at work, on your night stand, in your bathroom. Then, take a sip here and there!
  • Do a one on one when you're indulging in alcohol.  For every alcohol drink, drink a glass of water. Ladies: Make sure there's not a long line for the bathrooms - especially after you "break the seal"!
Best of all: 
Replace sugary drinks with water!
Be a good role model for our children. 
They really need you. 
Many children in the pediatrics center are there because they're obese.  In a 2011-2012 CDC survey, approximately 17% (or 12.5 million) of children and adolescents aged 2—19 years were reported as being obese. These children will suffer from increased risks of heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, breathing problems and sleeping apnea.
So tell me:
How do you get yourself to drink more water during the day?
What have you done to help in the fight against childhood obesity?
Train Smart Today!
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