Monday, November 25, 2013

A Healthy Thanksgiving

     It comes only once a year, but a food-centric holiday like Thanksgiving often means adding 2,500 more calories to your average daily intake.

     Joe Fleischman, head chef at Meritus Medical Center, suggests scaling back on the fat, calories and sodium for a healthier Thanksgiving meal. “I use fresh ingredients such as roasted sweet potatoes instead of candied yams,” says Chef Joe. “I also favor a fresh turkey over a frozen one.” Here’s how Chef Joe replaces unhealthy fats and sodium with fresh ingredients and spices.

Monday, November 18, 2013

New Guidelines for Cholesterol Care

     Statins are drugs used to lower cholesterol. If you have too much cholesterol in your blood, it can attach to the walls of your arteries causing them to narrow, and as a result, reduce blood flow.

     In the past, cardiologists managed patients by cholesterol targets, specifically patients’ low-density lipoproteins (LDL) or bad cholesterol. New guidelines from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology remove cholesterol target levels and replace them with a formula to help physicians calculate the chances of heart attack and stroke in patients.

     “The big difference with these guidelines is getting the right people on the right medication at the right dose,” says cardiologist Michael Carlos, M.D. with Robinwood Heart in Hagerstown. The new recommendations focus on risk factors rather than just cholesterol levels.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Birth Control: an Ounce of Prevention

     If you’re a parent or teenager, here’s some good news: The number of adolescents engaging in sexual activity has declined over the past few decades. The bad news: The rates of unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) remains high for our young adults.

Abstinence is the only 100-percent effective form of birth control.

     For individuals who choose to be sexually active, here is information on some of the more popular birth control methods:

Monday, November 4, 2013

Dr. Neil Roy: Fit for the Job

     When he’s not in the midst of caring for patients in the fast-paced emergency department (ED) of Meritus Medical Center, emergency medicine physician Neil Roy, M.D., gravitates to another exciting scene, Brazilian Jujitsu, a combination martial arts and combat sport that focuses on taking the fight to the ground.

      Dr. Roy’s wrestling and boxing experience in high school and college provided the motivation for him to try mixed martial arts (MMA). MMA combines standing martial arts, similar to boxing and “ground martial arts” akin to wrestling. He began training at a MMA gym during his residency and soon balanced out his training program with Brazilian Jujitsu classes.