Friday, April 23, 2010

How to break the junk food habit?

Have you ever felt like you were addicted to certain foods? You know the feeling. You pop a candy in your mouth and you’re off and running on a binge. You can’t have just one chip or a serving of ice cream. One taste and you eat a mountain of it. Or, you’re doing really well on your healthier lifestyle journey and then one day you decide to stray a bit. Perhaps you’re stressed out or maybe you thought “Hey, I’ve been doing really well and I feel like taking a ‘vacation day’ from my program and eat whatever I like.” And then you have that piece of cake or cookie and even after gulping down everything in sight, it’s still not enough.
Here’s the good news. You’re not crazy. You could be addicted. You may actually be a junk food junkie!
You’ll probably also notice that it’s never tuna on a bed of greens or oatmeal that gets you going. Instead, it is as the science has shown, refined sugars, high fats as well as processed foods that will set you off into an addictive compulsive eating craze. Here are some tips to help you navigate the treacherous waters of addictive eating:
1. Make a list of any foods that lead to overeating and/or binging. You know what they are. Some of you are sweet eaters, others like starches, and still others have problems with both. Sit down and write them out. Be aware and keep these foods out of your house and stay away from them at restaurants and social gatherings.

2. Do not fall for the “just one little bite” lie. It’s like an alcoholic saying “just one little drink” or a drug addict’s “just one hit” rationalizing. Don’t try it. You’ll lose every time. If it’s an addictive food, you’re having even a small amount may awaken the beast and set you off into a regrettable binge.

3. Get the right attitude. You’re not being deprived of a tasty delight. You’re saving yourself from a shame and guilt-filled binge, and all those extra pounds of body fat.

4. Summon a support team. If you’re really having issues with these foods, then put together your own A-Team. You can draw upon people who show compassion and want to support your efforts to withdraw from these foods. Family, friends, expert counselors, medical and fitness professionals, dietitians and groups like Overeaters Anonymous, may be good resources.

5. Be patient and persistent. You need to give your body enough time to adapt and adjust to healthier foods. Even the rats needed 2 weeks to get over their food strike! Keep plenty of fresh produce and lean protein around and plan your meals and snacks so you’re not left in the lurch with only the addictive stuff to choose. You can do this!

Thursday, April 22, 2010


A healthy 14-year-old girl in the United Kingdom suffered a fracture in her right foot when she fell off a Wii Fit balance board, says a letter in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Highly popular Wii interactive games allow players to participate physically in games and sporting events, and not just with their fingers or by moving their hands and arms to swing virtual sports equipment like tennis racquets.
A Wii Fit balance board replaces handheld controls with a pressure-sensitive board about 2 inches off the ground that lets the user try to improve balance. The little device, which resembles a skateboard, allows players to control movements on-screen via balancing movements, twists, and turns.
It’s been touted as another health-promoting Wii game that forces people off couches and into action that burns calories.
But sometimes such play can cause problems, Karen Eley of Oxford Radcliffe Hospitals NHS Trust in Oxford, England, writes in a letter in the New England Journal of Medicine.
“Other reported Wii-associated injuries have included traumatic hemothorax (from a fall while playing), dislocations, and head injuries (from being struck accidentally by a gaming partner).” A hemothorax is a collection of blood in the space between the chest wall and the lung.
Eley writes that “Nintendinitis” was described in 1990 in a patient with pain in a thumb tendon after five hours of playing a video game. And after the introduction of Wii, Eley says, clinicians started to see patients with what they called "Wiiitis.”
A study published in October 2009 suggested that 12% of young video game players have finger pain, enough to limit gaming time; and 10% have wrist pain.
Eley, K. New England Journal of Medicine, Feb. 4, 2010; vol 362 : p 5.
WebMD Health News: "Nintendo Game Sparks Acute ‘Wiiitis.'"
WebMD Health News: "Video Games May Cause Kids Pain."