1. Take a Tailgate Time-out
It’s an all-American past-time — the tailgate party! Tailgating today has progressed far beyond burgers and chips. You’ll find everything from cheese dip to spicy chicken wings.
Don’t despair: Your tailgate spread doesn’t have to sideline your weight loss plan. Grilled kabobs are great fare on the field. Just skewer veggies, fruits, and lean meat, and soak in your favorite marinade. Seafood, salsas, wraps, and stews are good eating, too. A Crock-Pot of chili — loaded with high-fiber, high-protein beans — is a classic tailgate dish (don’t forget the Beano).
Just remember, alcohol is packed with calories. Enjoy your favorite brew, but switch it out for zero-calorie beverages as the party rolls along. It’s all in how you play the game!
2. Sleep Tips to Help Kids’ Weight
Does your child get enough sleep? If not, it could affect more than sleepiness at school. Studies suggest there may be a link between skimping on sleepand being overweight. Sleep shortfalls may increase hunger hormones — so kids eat more. Also, kids are less likely to get exercise (and burn off calories) when they’re tired.
To help kids and teens get a good night’s sleep:
- Remove TVs, computers, and gadgets from kids’ bedrooms.
- Avoid large meals before bedtime.
- Develop a regular bedtime routine.
- Set firm bedtimes and wake times.
- Make sure the bedroom is quiet, dark, relaxing — and not too hot or cold.
- Help kids quiet down a few hours before bedtime.
- Heavy studying, text messaging, or video games should end in early evening.
How much sleep do schoolkids need? It depends on the child. But here are some general guidelines from the National Sleep Foundation:
- Ages 3-5: 11-13 hours
- Ages 5-12: 10-11 hours
- Ages 11-17: 9.5-9.25 hours
3. Quit Smoking: You Won’t Gain Weight
If you’ve finally decided to kick the habit, there’s good news: Quitting smoking won’t make you gain weight over the long term. Some people pick up 4 or 5 pounds early on, but that’s only temporary.
4. Flu Vaccine? Who? You.
As temperatures get chillier and people spend more time indoors, fluseason sneaks in. Because the flu virus can infect the lungs, it can cause a serious complication like pneumonia — which can require hospitalization, even lead to death. That’s why certain people must get a flu shot.
October or November is the best time to get vaccinated, but you can still get vaccinated in December or later. Flu season can start as early as October and last as late as May.
If you live with or care for a child under 2 years old, you are in a priority group for flu shots.
There are two types of fluvaccines: flu shots and nasal sprays. The flu shot vaccine is recommended for:
- Children aged 6 months to 19 years.
- Pregnant women.
- People age 50 and older.
- People of any age with chronic medical conditions such as asthma.
- People living in nursing homes or other long-term facilities.
Others who could get Flu Mist nasal spray include healthy people 2-49 years old who are not pregnant.
Also, protect yourself and your child from catching or spreading viruses:
- Cover nose and mouth with a tissue when you sneeze or cough. Throw it away afterward.
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water — especially important after you cough or sneeze on them. Use an alcohol-based hand cleaner if necessary.
- Keep you and your baby away from people who are coughing or sneezing.
- Try not to touch your eyes, nose, or mouth — since that’s how germs are spread
In 2009, the H1N1 swine flu, a new flu virus, emerged. This virus spreads from person to person like seasonal flu, mainly through coughing or sneezing or sometimes by touching something that became infected with the virus. A vaccine for swine flu is in production.