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Schools Often Fail to Follow Their Own Written Wellness Policies

HBNS STORY | November 18, 2014

A wide divide exists between public schools' written wellness policies and their actual day-to-day practices, finds a new study in Health Promotion Practice.

Food Companies' Masterful Marketing at Odds With Consumers' Health

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | November 18, 2014 | CFAH Staff

New options from Domino's, McDonald's and Pepsi are putting consumers' food choices to the test. Do we really want nacho-chips-flavored Mountain Dew? Probably not. But health advocates will have to step up their game to compete against these marketing powerhouses...

Unhealthy Diets Linked With Mental Health of Children

HBNS STORY | November 6, 2014

Children and adolescents who ate foods high in saturated fats, refined carbohydrates and processed foods appear to experience more depression and low moods, suggests a new systematic research review in the American Journal of Public Health.

Poor-Quality Weight Loss Advice Often Appears First in an Online Search

HBNS STORY | November 13, 2014

More than 40 percent of U.S. Internet users use online search engines to seek guidance on weight loss and physical activity. A new study in the American Journal of Public Health finds that high-quality weight loss information often appears after the first page of search engine results.

Time Spent Preparing Meals at Home Linked to Healthier Diet

HBNS STORY | October 30, 2014

Spending less than one hour a day preparing food at home is associated with eating more fast food and spending more money eating out, finds new research in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Not having time available may be one of the most significant barriers to achieving a healthy diet.

Poor Health Habits Linked to Financial Insecurity

HBNS STORY | September 4, 2014

Financial hardship, or feeling that one can’t make ends meet, may be more predictive of health risk behaviors than actual income levels for people with low-incomes, finds a recent study in the American Journal of Health Promotion.

Neighborhoods with Healthy Food Options Less Likely to Have Overweight Kids

HBNS STORY | July 8, 2014

Children with a greater number of healthy food outlets near their homes had a reduced likelihood of being overweight or obese, finds an Australian study published in American Journal of Health Promotion.

Don't Forget the Hefty Price We Pay to Engage in Health

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | June 12, 2014 | Jessie Gruman

Media-fueled flip-flops and research breakthroughs on lifestyle and health behaviors are wearing down my usual patience with the provisional nature of science. Even simple dietary recommendations like lower fat/salt recommendations have become complicated as old truisms are overturned by new evidence. So I'm asking: To whom should I turn for meaningful guidance about modifying my risk for illness and boosting my health?

Life-Changing Events Can Lead to Less Physical Activity

HBNS STORY | June 5, 2014

Adults tend to engage in less leisure-time physical activity after changes in both lifestyle and physical status, finds a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Families with Preschoolers Buying Fewer High Calorie Foods and Beverages

HBNS STORY | May 27, 2014

Families with young children are purchasing fewer high calorie drinks and processed foods, which may be a factor in declining rates of childhood obesity, finds a new report in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

People with Low Incomes Less Likely to Use Healthy Weight Loss Strategies

HBNS STORY | May 22, 2014

Poorer people of all ages are less likely than wealthier ones to follow recommended strategies for weight loss, finds a recent study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Calorie Disclosures Might Actually Improve Health

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | April 29, 2014 | Trudy Lieberman

I've long been a skeptic when it comes to disclosing information about how doctors practice medicine, how hospitals treat patients and what both doctors and hospitals charge for their services. But I'm dropping my skepticism about disclosing calories in food. We've been conditioned to think of some foods as healthier than others. Only labels will reveal the truth...

Public Health Centers Deliver Equal or Better Quality of Care

HBNS STORY | April 28, 2014

A new study in Health Services Research reports that patients who get care at federally funded health centers have fewer office visits and hospitalizations, and receive similar or a better quality of preventive care when compared to similar patients of non-health center primary care providers.

Doctors as Coaches, Giving Up the High Horse

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | April 21, 2014 | Milly Dawson

A recent conference at Harvard Medical School brought together scores of physicians who want to live healthfully themselves and to work as partners with their patients to help them do the same. I've attended many medical meetings but never one as much fun or as health promoting for participants as this one...

Weight Loss Efforts Start Well, but Lapse Over Time

HBNS STORY | April 8, 2014

Learning you have an obesity-related disease motivates many to start a weight loss program, but troubling health news is often not enough to sustain weight loss efforts, finds new research in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Do People Really Want to Tech Their Way to Health?

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | March 25, 2014 | Jane Sarasohn Kahn

The hockey-stick growth of "wearable technology" seen at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show begs the question: Will people pay out-of-pocket for gadgets that help them measure their steps, track their sleep, quantify their calories, record their heart rate and feedback their mood? A caveat emptor to investors seeing short-term dollar signs in the digital health sector...

The Person Responsible for Your Health Is...

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | February 27, 2014 | CFAH Staff

Is it our job alone to look after our health? Or do employers, insurers, for-profit companies and the government also share some responsibility to keep us healthy? One person's nanny state is another's public health salvation. There is no shortage of examples of opposing perspectives...

African Americans' Concept of Health May Be More Than Physical

HBNS STORY | February 13, 2014

Some African-Americans rate their health as good, despite being overweight or having high blood pressure, finds a new study in Ethnicity and Disease.

Contradictory Nutrition News Creates Consumer Confusion

HBNS STORY | January 28, 2014

Exposure to conflicting news about nutrition often results in confusion and backlash against nutrition recommendations, finds a recent study in the Journal of Health Communication: International Perspectives.

Sticking With Resolutions Is All About Preparation

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | January 27, 2014 | David L. Katz

Relevant research and conventional wisdom alike suggest that, despite their irresistible perennial tug on our collective conscience, New Year's resolutions generally have about the staying power of Champagne bubbles. In contrast, the science of sustainable behavior change tips convincingly toward "don't go until ready."

Few Primary Care Practices Provide Effective Weight Management Care

HBNS STORY | January 14, 2014

Only a quarter of U.S. primary care physicians surveyed are doing a thorough job of helping patients achieve and maintain a healthy weight, finds a study in the American Journal of Health Promotion.

Wellness at Work

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | December 5, 2013 | Health Behavior News Service

Is your company one of the many that are now offering "wellness programs"? Our latest Be a Prepared Patient article, Staying Well at Work, looks at a few of these programs in action and offers tips for maintaining a healthy work/life balance...

Healthy Eating...Help!

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | November 27, 2013 | CFAH Staff

It isn't breaking news that exercising and eating a healthy diet can help improve your overall health and fitness, but that doesn't make it any easier for most of us to follow suit. These resources from CFAH's 'Be a Prepared Patient' can help...

For Many People with Diabetes, Lifestyle Changes Trump Medications

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | November 21, 2013 | Milly Dawson

Three key patient engagement themes emerged from this year's 'Diabetes + Innovation 2013' conference in Washington, D.C., organized by Joslin Diabetes Center at Harvard Medical School...

Reducing Obesity: It Takes a Village

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | November 20, 2013 | Trudy Lieberman

During my recent visit to Canada, I had a chance to meet obesity expert and medical director of Canada's Bariatric Medicine Institute, Dr. Yoni Freedhoff. What he had to say was somewhat surprising...

Is Everything We Know About Nutrition Wrong?

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | October 31, 2013 | Inside Health Care

Millions of dollars are spent on dietary research, but are we any closer to understanding what a truly healthy diet consists of? A few new studies are turning long-held recommendations on their heads.

Healthy Food Rarely Convenient for Urban Minorities

HBNS STORY | October 15, 2013

A survey of stores in a predominantly black, low income area of Philadelphia found that nearly 80 percent received low ratings for the availability of healthy food, finds a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Weight Loss Apps Lack Key Ingredients for Success

HBNS STORY | October 10, 2013

Weight loss mobile applications may work well as basic tracking devices, but need to do more to help dieters, according to a new report in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Parents Play a Role in Teen Eating Disorders

HBNS STORY | October 3, 2013

The ways parents or caregivers interact with children around mealtimes can have unintended consequences, according to a new report in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

Binge Eating More Likely to Lead to Health Risks in Men

HBNS STORY | September 17, 2013

Binge eating is a problem affecting both men and women however, obese men who binge are more likely than their female counterparts to have elevated cholesterol and high blood pressure, finds a new study in General Hospital Psychiatry.

Scary Coffee Stories – Add Cream and Two Lumps of Caveats

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | August 27, 2013 | Gary Schwitzer

You may have seen the story the other day about a paper pointing to an association – not proof of cause – between heavy coffee consumption and higher death rates in people younger than 55. At last check, there were more than 170 stories about this study that turned up on a simple web search. But there was a point that didn’t make it into most stories...

Rural Seniors Prefer Self-Care Over Doctors

HBNS STORY | August 15, 2013

A survey of older rural adults found a high degree of medical skepticism, the belief that one knows and can control their own health better than a medical professional can, reports a recent study in the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved.

Do Antioxidants Improve a Woman’s Chances of Conceiving?

HBNS STORY | August 6, 2013

There is no high quality evidence that antioxidant supplements help to increase a woman’s chances of having a baby, according to the results of a new Cochrane review.

Significant Others Can Influence Extreme Dieting

HBNS STORY | July 25, 2013

Women who are frequently encouraged by their significant others to lose weight are more likely to resort to unhealthy measures to do so, according to new research in the American Journal of Health Promotion.

Wellness Programs Linked to Healthier Foods in Schools

HBNS STORY | July 11, 2013

A new study in American Journal of Preventive Medicine finds that schools with more robust federal wellness programs offer healthier foods and beverages, including foods offered in vending machines, school stores and a la carte sales.

Lower Coronary Heart Disease Deaths By Making Several Lifestyle Changes

HBNS STORY | July 9, 2013

Programs to address multiple health behaviors, such as diet and exercise, significantly lowered the risk of a fatal heart attack, stroke or other cardiovascular event in people with coronary heart disease, finds a new review in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Negative Public Health Campaigns May Undermine Weight Loss Goals

HBNS STORY | June 20, 2013

Public health campaigns that stigmatize obese people by using negative images or text do not motivate them to lose weight any more than more neutral campaigns, finds a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Taxing Unhealthy Food Spurs People to Buy Less

HBNS STORY | June 18, 2013

Labeling foods and beverages as less healthy and taxing them motivates people to make healthier choices, finds a recent study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Probiotics Prevent Diarrhea Related To Antibiotic Use

HBNS STORY | June 6, 2013

Probiotic supplements have the potential to prevent diarrhea caused by antibiotics, according to a new review in The Cochrane Library.

Calorie Counts on Menus Have Small but Promising Effects

HBNS STORY | May 9, 2013

Menu labeling has made more people aware of how many calories are in restaurant meals and has some people reducing their intake, according to new research published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Black Students Drink More Soda When Available at School

HBNS STORY | May 9, 2013

The availability of sugar-sweetened or diet soda in schools does not appear to be related to students’ overall consumption, except for African-American students, who drink more soda when it’s available at school, finds a study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Teens Overeat at Subway, Too

HBNS STORY | May 7, 2013

Adolescents are just as likely to consume too many calories at Subway as at McDonald’s, a new study in Journal of Adolescent Health finds, despite the fact that they think Subway offers healthier food.

Prebiotics: Do Supplements In Baby Formula Help Prevent Allergies?

HBNS STORY | March 28, 2013

Prebiotic supplements in infant formula may help to prevent eczema, according to a systematic review published in The Cochrane Library.

School Grades Go Down When Health Risks Go Up

HBNS STORY | March 26, 2013

Academic performance is linked to risky health behaviors in children and teens, reports a new review in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

Mandating Fruits & Vegetables in School Meals Makes a Difference

HBNS STORY | March 12, 2013

State laws that require minimum levels of fruits and vegetables in school meals may give a small boost to the amount of these foods in adolescents' diets, according to a study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Living a Healthy Lifestyle

PREPARED PATIENT RESOURCE | Promote Your Health

Maintaining healthy habits can be tough. Here are some trusted resources with advice on exercise, nutrition, and managing chronic conditions.

Improving Your Health Behaviors

PREPARED PATIENT RESOURCE | Promote Your Health

Want to change something about your health behavior? Here's some advice.

Fruit and Vegetable Advertising Linked to More Consumption

HBNS STORY | September 4, 2012

The key to getting people to eat more fruits and vegetables may be advertising, finds a new study in the American Journal of Health Promotion.

TV Watching Linked to Eating Unhealthy Food

HBNS STORY | July 10, 2012

Adults and children who watch more television have less healthy diets, finds a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. For every age and gender studied, people who watched no more than an hour of TV a day reported healthier diets compared to those who watched four hours or more.

Banning the Big Gulp: Bold Initiative or Bad Idea?

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | June 14, 2012 | Inside Health Care

"Who should be responsible for the health of Americans?" "What's the best way to break society's bad habits?" Questions like these poured in following New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's recent proposal to ban sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces.

Logging On to Lose Weight May Be a Tough Sell for Employers

HBNS STORY | June 5, 2012

A new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine examined whether a convenient web support program could help employees maintain weight loss after an intensive kick-off. It turns out that a challenge may be just getting them to log on.

Electronic Devices with Reminders Make Sticking to Diets Easier

HBNS STORY | June 5, 2012

There’s some good news for those trying to lose weight with the help of new apps on their mobile devices. They may actually work, says a new research study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Diabetes: 'Valuable Truths about Food and Consequences'

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | February 13, 2012 | Conversation Continues

From celebrity chefs, to health news journalists, to the National Institutes of Health people are talking about the increasing rate of diabetes, what causes it, and what to do about it.

Small Steps to Big Health Change

PREPARED PATIENT ARTICLE

We often give a chilly reception to the idea of going "cold turkey" when it comes to anything that has to do with changing behaviors and habits, even those that may be important for our health.

A New Year and a New Big Picture Look at Weight Loss?

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | January 9, 2012 | Inside Health Care

With New Years resolutions still fresh, weight loss is all over the news, and many Americans' minds are firmly resolved to lose weight. However, their bodies and fast food restaurants may be equally determined that they fail.

Family Support Motivates Mexican-Americans to Adopt Healthy Habits

HBNS STORY | January 5, 2012

Encouragement from family members helps motivate Mexican-American adults to eat more fruits and vegetables and to engage in regular exercise, according to a new study in the current issue of American Journal of Health Promotion.

Feelings of Depression and Binge Eating Go Hand in Hand in Teen Girls

HBNS STORY | December 13, 2011

Teenage girls who feel depressed are twice as likely to start binge eating as other girls are, according to a new study in the Journal of Adolescent Health. The reverse is also true: Girls who engage in regular binge eating face double the normal risk of depressive symptoms.

Guest Blog: On Alcohol and Breast Cancer, Guilt, Correlations, Fun, Moderation, Doctors' Habits, Advice and Herbal Tea

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | November 11, 2011 | Elaine Schattner

Few breast cancer news items irk some women I know more than those linking alcohol consumption to the disease.

Sweetener Found In Gum May Prevent Ear Infections In Children

HBNS STORY | November 9, 2011

There is "fair evidence" to support the use of xylitol, a natural sweetener used in gums and mints, to prevent inner ear infections in healthy children, a new evidence review finds.

E-Learning Programs May Do Little to Change Eating Habits

HBNS STORY | October 26, 2011

With more people turning to the Internet and smart phones to help them with everything from exercising to quitting smoking, it appears applications, or “apps” as they are popularly known, intended to change eating habits may not make much of a difference, according to a new review.

Dieting Beats Exercise for Diabetes Prevention, Combination Is Best

HBNS STORY | August 30, 2011

A new study suggests that to prevent diabetes in postmenopausal women, dietary weight loss alone is effective while exercise alone is not effective, and both together are best of all.

Modified Fat Diet Key to Lowering Heart Disease Risk

HBNS STORY | July 12, 2011

A new evidence review finds that a modified fat diet — rather than a low fat diet — might be the real key to reducing one’s risk of heart disease.

Losing Weight, Keeping It Off Might Require Distinct Skill Sets

HBNS STORY | July 5, 2011

Practices that help people lose weight and practices that help them keep it off do not overlap much.

Obese Mexican-Americans Lack Diet, Exercise Advice From Doctors

HBNS STORY | June 30, 2011

Only half of obese Mexican-American adults receive diet and exercise advice from their physicians, although obesity is on the rise for this group.

Patient-Centered Care: From Exam Room to Dinner Table

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | May 11, 2011 | Jessie Gruman

Only one in 10 respondents to a national survey could estimate how many calories they should consume in a day. Seventy-nine percent make few or no attempts to pay attention to the balance between the calories they consume and expend in a day.These and other piquant findings from the online 2011 Food and Health Survey fielded by the International Food Information Council Foundation (IFIC) struck home last week as I smacked up against my own ignorance about a healthy diet and the difficulty of changing lifelong eating habits.

Pre-Teens Make Their Own Decisions on Diet, Exercise and Weight-loss

HBNS STORY | February 24, 2011

Eleven-year olds definitely have their own opinions about diet, exercise and weight-loss; and it is mostly their opinions — not those of their parents — that affect their lifestyle changes.

School Vending Machine Choices Affect Overall Diet for Children

HBNS STORY | November 16, 2010

Vending machines in public schools influence the diets of school children and can affect overall dietary intake and health, depending on what foods they contain.

Dorms With Dining Halls Might Add to Freshman Weight Gain

HBNS STORY | August 3, 2010

Watched, Loved and Now Desired by Millions

PREPARED PATIENT BLOG | July 20, 2010 | Dorothy Jeffress

If popular culture provides clues to social trends then all signs point to an American public captivated by red velvet, carrot, lemon, and raspberry. Fabric, fruits and vegetables? No cakes whether of the cup variety or fancy full-size versions.

Corner Shops Could Bring Healthier Food to Inner Cities

HBNS STORY | April 27, 2010

Tainted Produce More Likely for Low-Income Shoppers

HBNS STORY | April 6, 2010

Teen Girls Look to Peers to Gauge Weight Goals

HBNS STORY | March 15, 2010

Drinking 100-Percent Juice Might Not Lead to Teen Overweight

HBNS STORY | February 26, 2010

Women With Partner, Baby Gain More Weight Than Single Women

HBNS STORY | January 5, 2010