Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Flip Flops, Baseball Caps and Cancer

Did you know flip-flips and baseball caps could pose a hidden health risk when it comes to skin cancer? That’s the word from Dr. Anthony Peterson, from the Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine. He says most skin cancers occur on the parts of the body that are repeatedly exposed to the sun. The problem with flip-flops and baseball caps is that they leave the tips of the ears and the tops of the feet dangerously exposed to sun damage. The potential for skin cancers in those areas are real, especially on the tips of the ears.

More than 1 million cases of nonmelanoma skin cancer are found in this country each year, according to the Cancer Society. Most of those cases are considered to be sun-related. They develop on sun-exposed areas of the body, like the face, ear, neck, lips, and the backs of the hands. Depending on the type, they can be fast- or slow-growing, but they rarely spread to other parts of the body.

Doctors say melanoma is almost always curable when it is detected in its early stages. Although melanoma accounts for only a small percentage of skin cancer, it is far more dangerous than other skin cancers, and it causes the majority of skin cancer deaths.

You can prevent all forms of skin cancer, including melanoma, by avoiding overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays. Here are some tips from medical experts:

• Use a sunscreen with an SPF of least 15 daily. Wearing sunscreen in the early fall is just as important, too.
• Wear protective clothing outdoors, including a wide-brimmed hat, a long-sleeved shirt, and pants.
• Stay out of the sun during the midday hours (10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.).
• Use a higher SPF when at higher elevations.
• Avoid sunbathing and tanning salons. UV rays from artificial sources such as tanning beds and sunlamps are just as dangerous as those from the sun.
• Set a good example for your children by always using sunscreen and wearing protective clothing.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Some Interesting Baby Boomer Facts

MetLife has been keeping a pulse on us baby boomers and have come up with another set of interesting facts. The first report was back in November 2008 called: Boomers: The Next 20 Years, Ecologies of Risk. In this report, I learned that I may nor recognize myself or my surroundings by the year 2028 as a result of an evolving global environment and marketplace. This is provided I'll still be alive at age 70. You can read that report here: Boomers in 20 years

Now there's a new report out that gives insight into the oldest and youngest boomers.

The youngest boomers: those born in the 1960s don't like being called "baby boomers." They prefer to be referred to as Generation X. The youngest boomers say 71 is considered OLD while older boomers say the old age begins at 78.

The oldest boomers--those born from 1946 to early 1950s--have 2.1 children, 2.6 grandchildren and many are also empty nesters.

The average income of boomers is $71,300 with a net worth of $236,000.

Sixty-seven percent don't have a living parent while one-third still has at least one parent living.

1 in 7 baby boomers are providing care to a parent or other family member.

The make-up of those involed in the study:

84% white
9% Black
7% Asian

Interesting that no Latinos were included.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Like Daughter Like Mother

Baby Boomers have been known for setting trends but the one I'm about to share with you is utterly ridiculous!

It appears a 50-year-old woman decided it was time for a change---a change in appearance that is---and she spent $15,000 to do it. Why? Janet Cunliffe says its because she wanted to look like her daughter, Janet. In an interview on Good Morning America, she said seeing how attractive her 28-year-old daughter was made her want to get her own youthful looks back.

First this baby boomer mum had breast implants, then lost 30 pounds. The final act was the cosmetic surgery to smooth out the wrinkles on her face. She now brags about the fact that she and her daughter look more like twins than mother and daughter.

What is disturbing about this story is that Plastic Surgeons are reporting more and more procedures like this. Older women looking to recapture their youth with a knife.

My daughter is a beautiful young woman and one I am very proud of, HOWEVER, I know where she got her looks from and I'm just fine with aging gracefully.

What do you think? Is there something wrong with wanting to have a more youthful look to build your self-esteem?

Monday, May 11, 2009

A Review of The Soloist

As someone who spent more than 25 years in radio and television news, I have drawn the conclusion that there are two kinds of journalists: 1) Those who want to be seen. 2) Those who want to be heard.

Journalists who want to be seen are out to make a name for themselves. Many of them are cut throat and will do anything it takes to get to the top. One more thing about them is they love face time or to see their name in the top byline.

Then you have journalists who want to be heard. These are the ones who have a story to tell and work hard to make sure you hear it. That's the kind of journalist I believe Steve Lopez of the LA Times is.

Lopez discovered a musical genius named Nathaniel Ayers Jr., by accident back in 2005. Ayers was a homeless man who caught the ear of Lopez with his two-stringed violin. From that moment, Lopez says he felt compelled to learn more about this individual. How did he end up in LA from Cleveland, OH? He wanted to know how someone who studied at the prestigious Julliard School of Music could end up on the streets with no place to go.

Ayers is played in the movie by Jamie Foxx. I am not a Jamie Foxx fan but I have to say this role is, by far, is the best character I have ever seen him play. It is my understanding that he actually spent time with people suffering from Ayers' condition to get a real sense of what it was like.

The Lopez role was played by Robert Downey Jr. After Tropic Thunder, I thought I would never watch another movie with him in it again. (That's how horrible I thought his character was). However, he did impress me in Iron Man, so I gave him the benefit of the doubt for The Soloist. He didn't disappoint.

This movie isn't a tear jerker but it does tug at your heart strings. It is also a reminder that one person can still make a difference in someone else's life--and you don't necessarily have to be a journalist.

I highly recommend this movie and I hope that I, too, was the kind of journalist who was heard.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Baby Boomer Barbie

Yes, Barbie has finally turned 50 and officially joined the ranks of us baby boomers.

At long last, here are some NEW Barbie dolls to coincide with her and OUR aging gracefully. These are a bit more realistic...

Bifocals Barbie. Comes with her own set of blended-lens fashion frames in six wild colors (half-frames too!), neck chain, and large-print editions of Vogue and Martha Stewart Living.

Hot Flash Barbie. Press Barbie's belly button and watch her face turn beet red while tiny drops of perspiration appear on her forehead. Comes with handheld fan and tiny tissues.

Facial Hair Barbie. As Barbie's hormone levels shift, see her whiskers grow. Available with teensy tweezers and magnifying mirror.

Flabby Arms Barbie. Hide Barbie's droopy triceps with these new, roomier-sleeved gowns. Good news on the tummy front, two-Muumuus with tummy-support panels are included.

Bunion Barbie. Years of dancing in stiletto heels have definitely taken their toll on Barbie's dainty arched feet. Soothe her sores with the pumice stone and plasters, then slip on soft terry mules.

No-More-Wrinkles Barbie. Erase those pesky crow's-feet and lip lines with a tube of Skin Sparkle-Spackle, from Barbie's own line of exclusive age-blasting cosmetics.

Mid-life Crisis Barbie. It's time to ditch Ken. Barbie needs a change, and Alonzo (her personal trainer) is just what the doctor ordered, along with Prozac. They're hopping in her new red Miata and heading for the Napa Valley to open a B&B.

Divorced Barbie. Sells for $199.99. Comes with Ken's house, Ken's car, and Ken's boat.

Post-Menopausal Barbie. This Barbie wets her pants when she sneezes, forgets where she puts things, and cries a lot. She is sick and tired of Ken sitting on the couch watching the tube, clicking through the channels. Comes with Depends and Kleenex.

**The only thing that remains the same is her blond hair---thanks to a little bottle of Clairol and a fabulous hairdresser!**

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Tall, Dark and Neurotic?

In a study of baby boomer adults over the age of 50, women get an added health benefit when paired with a mate who is conscientious and a little neurotic. While both men and women benefit from being paired with a conscientious mate, Roberts said, only the women saw a modest boost in their health from being with a man who was also a little neurotic.

Conscientiousness is a good thing in a mate, researchers report, not just because it’s easier to live with someone who washes the dishes without being asked, but also because having a conscientious partner may actually be good for one’s health.

"Highly conscientious people are more organized and responsible and tend to follow through with their obligations, to be more impulse controlled and to follow rules,” says University of Illinois psychology professor Brent Roberts, who led the study. Highly neurotic people tend to be more moody and anxious, and to worry, he said.

People who are more conscientious also tend to live longer than those who are less so. They are more likely to exercise, eat nutritious foods and adhere to vitamin or drug regimens, and are less likely to smoke, abuse drugs or take unwarranted risks, all of which may explain their better health. They also tend to have more stable relationships than people with low conscientiousness.

“It appears that even if you are really highly conscientious, you can still benefit from a spouse’s conscientiousness,” Roberts said. “It makes sense that regardless of what your attributes are, if you have people in your social network that have resources, such as conscientiousness, that can always help.”

Most studies have found a very different outcome for people who are highly neurotic. They tend to report poorer health and less satisfying relationships.

The study appears this month in Psychological Science.