May 2019
In this issue
Exercise & Fitness

What is high-intensity interval training (HIIT), and what have researchers learned about its benefits? 

If you are a woman with large breasts, you may have found vigorous exercise uncomfortable or embarrassing. Here is advice to help you find and properly fit a sports bra so you can enjoy athletic activities you have been avoiding.

Bicycling, working out on an elliptical machine, swimming, and water aerobics are all great for your cardiovascular health but they do not protect bone health. To keep your bones strong, be sure to include weight-bearing and/or resistance exercises two or three times a week as part of your fitness routine.

Tennis, dancing, running, and walking briskly are good for your bones and your cardiovascular system. If you use a treadmill, here are tips for making your workout safe, effective, and interesting.

Activities of daily life - like putting on shoes, going up and down stairs, and doing housework and gardening - can become more difficult as we age if we do not take steps to maintain our strength and flexibility. You can check your functional fitness, then incorporate the 6 test exercises into a fitness routine to improve your ability to stay active and independent. If you do a lot of sitting, stretching your hamstrings while standing or lying down may also be helpful.

Cooking, Eating, & Drinking

While most such claims are bogus, one "superfood" has lots of research to support the hype. Fortunately, you can obtain it from many delicious sources.

Here are tips for helping children develop healthful eating habits and enjoy a wide variety of foods instead of being picky eaters. And this primer on talking about food choices with your child may steer you towards more helpful mealtime communication.

This article places new research on eggs, cholesterol, and heart-healthy diets within the context of prior research.

Several studies, including a recent one, have addressed this question: Can you compensate for a less-than-ideal diet by taking multi-vitamins and/or other supplements?

Should you rinse off chicken, fish, or other meats before cooking them?

In tests of popular fruit juices and baby foods, Consumer Reports found unacceptably high levels of mercury, cadmium, arsenic, and lead. These heavy metals can cause neurological and reproductive damage and increase one's risk of developing cancer, diabetes, and other diseases. Children are at greatest risk, but all ages can be harmed. You may want to select products containing lower levels of these metals when you shop.

Consumer Reports testing also revealed that several national brands of bottled water, including some popular in the Bay Area, contained worrisome levels of arsenic. 

Long-Distance Caregiving
Caregiving is always challenging, but certain aspects of this role are easier when you live nearby. When you live far away, monitoring how someone is doing and making sure they are getting appropriate, quality care can be difficult. If you are tending to the needs of a sick, frail, or cognitively impaired loved one who lives elsewhere, you will find helpful advice and resources on the "Caring from a Distance" page of our new Later Life Resource Guides. 
It's Our 30th Anniversary!
"When we opened in the spring of 1989," Candace Ford, PlaneTree's founding director and current member of our board of directors, recently reminisced, "there was no internet, only a limited number of health and medical books were available for the public, and many doctors 'protected' their patients from learning 'too much' about their medical conditions.

"Now in 2019, things are very different. People are overloaded with information. When they research health questions online, they find hundreds of articles, many of which have information that's conflicting or commercial."

"Providing a way for you to quickly and reliably find trustworthy information is what makes our work so valuable," observes Lise Dyckman, PlaneTree's current executive director. "We recommend high quality internet resources carefully selected by medical librarians and consumer health professionals. We still have the same goal we had 30 years ago: to help community members make informed decisions and become better partners with their health care professionals."

We became an independent nonprofit in 2007. Support from grateful patrons enables us to provide health and medical information - and even to expand our services this year. We invite you to explore our brand-new, easy-to-use Later Life Resource Guides for caregivers, seniors, and people with serious health conditions.

"We're proud to continue helping people take better care of themselves and their families," said Dyckman. Ford agreed, adding, "If our services have helped you through the years, I hope you can celebrate our three-decade anniversary with a much-appreciated gift to PlaneTree!"

All events are open to the public. Some require pre-registration.
Nutrition, exercise, stress management, & support - for cancer patients, survivors, & caregivers
San Jose - many dates
San Jose - Thurs., 5/2
Campbell - Thurs., 5/2
Implementing a healthful lifestyle for your family - for parents of children & teens
Santa Clara - 3-part series begins Thurs., 5/2
Gilroy - Sat., 5/4
Mental health first aid - for parents & other adults who interact with teens
San Jose - 2-session classes, 5/7 & 8 or 5/20 & 22

Santa Clara - Tues., 5/7
Mountain View - Tues., 5/7
Health & housing fair:  free health screenings; community housing services
San Jose - Tues., 5/7
Los Gatos - Tues., 5/7
Los Gatos - Wed., 5/8
Emergency & disaster preparedness
Post-stroke recovery (scroll down the page)
Mountain View - Fri., 5/10
Having a sibling with special needs - for kids ages 8 to 12 (fee)
San Jose - Sat., 5/11
Mountain View - Tues., 5/14
Anxiety & depression in preteens & teens - film followed by Q&A session with experts
San Jose - Wed., 5/15
San Jose - Tues., 5/14
San Jose - Tues., 5/14
San Jose - Tues., 5/14
Santa Clara - Thurs., 5/16
Campbell - Sat., 5/18
Senior resource fair & presentations
San Jose - Fri., 5/17
Los Gatos - Mon., 5/20
Los Gatos - Tues., 5/21
San Jose - Sat., 5/25
Mountain View - Wed., 5/22
San Jose - 6-session class begins Wed., 5/22
Palo Alto - Thurs., 5/23
Mountain View - Fri., 5/24
Cupertino - Sun., 5/26
San Jose - Wed., 5/29
Palo Alto - Thurs., 5/30
Saratoga - Fri., 5/31
Cancer fair - for patients, survivors, & loved ones
Mountain View - Sat., 6/1

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