NEW QIGONG CLASS
We are pleased to offer another 6-week Qigong Class, starting Wednesday, October 10 through Wednesday, November 14. Regina Wolgel will continue to teach the class which will meet for 45 minutes from 3:30pm to 4:15pm each week. The cost is $120 for the six weeks. Drop-in rate is $25 per class.
The class is appropriate for all fitness levels. Performing slow, focused movements coordinated with diaphragmatic breathing, participants experience a total boy involvement that increases energy, decreases stress, improves balance and coordination. We need a minimum of 4 participants; maximum of 6.
FITNESS LEADS TO LONGEVITY (From the Archives of Internal Medicine)
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center and The Cooper Institute have found that individuals who maintain their physical fitness in their 30s, 40s, and 50s not only exhibit a greater likelihood of living longer, they also increase their chances of aging free of chronic illnesses. Dr. Jarrett Berry, senior author of the study, said “We’ve determined that being fit is not just delaying the inevitable, but it is actually lowering the onset of chronic disease in the final years of life.”
Researchers reviewed patient data of almost 19,000 participants in the Cooper Center Longitudinal Study, which itself contained more than 250,000 medical records maintained over 40 years, and linked the information to the patients’ Medicare claims filed between the ages of 70-85. Those patients who increased their fitness levels in their midlife years by 20% were 20% less likely to have developed a chronic disease such as congestive heart failure or colon cancer. Individuals who maintained higher levels of overall fitness lived their final five years of life with fewer chronic diseases; reducing the burden of such illnesses and experiencing greater overall quality of life as a result. Both men and women appeared to experience these benefits in an equal fashion.
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute recommends that adults attain at least 2.5 hours of moderate to intense aerobic activity (e.g., walking, running, or cycling) each week to experience and maintain optimal health benefits.
THE EFFECTS OF OMEGA-3 SUPPLEMENTATION ON SYSTEMIC INFLAMMATION AND ASSOCIATED DISEASE (from the National Council on Strength and Fitness newsletter)
Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) have long been touted as beneficial to cardiovascular function and health via various mechanisms. Their cardio-protective attributes are chiefly derived from positive effects demonstrated on the endothelial lining of major vascular structures (especially arteries). New research published online and scheduled for print publication in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity (2012), has additionally established that adequate omega-3 intake (via supplementation) can lower systemic inflammation in healthy, but overweight, middle-aged and older adults. Chronic inflammation is linked to many conditions (and possibly more to be discovered) including coronary artery disease (CAD), Type 2 diabetes, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease and even clinical frailty/functional decline among the elderly.
Omega-3 supplementation was found to promote a notable reduction in the serum concentration of a major inflammatory marker known as interleukin-6 (IL-6). This protein-based cytokine is usually produced in response to a stressor such as injury or infection, as explained by the study co-author Ron Glaser (a professor of molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics), but also presents itself in elevated quantities among individuals with excess body fat and immunological or metabolic disease. “You need this good inflammation for an initial response, but if… inflammation becomes chronic, then you’ve got a problem,” Glaser said. “Our research and studies done by others have shown that these two cytokines are clearly related to overall health – and when they’re elevated in the blood, that is not good for overall health. So the more ways we can find to lower them, the better.”
Study participants (138 sedentary adults, average age 51 years, 91% considered overweight) ingested either 2.5g or 1.25g of active omega-3 PUFAs in a daily supplement, or a placebo. The supplements were calibrated to contain a 7:1 ratio of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) as EPA has been suggested to have superior anti-inflammatory properties. The placebo consisted of a mix of oil pills that represent a typical American’s daily dietary oil intake.
After four months of supplementation:
- The low-dose group (1.25g/day) demonstrated an average 10% decrease in IL-6
- The high-dose group (2.5g/day) demonstrated an average 12% decrease in IL-6
- The placebo group demonstrated an average 36% increase in IL-6
As can be seen, there is no significant statistical difference between the two doses, but each dose clearly produced cytokine reductions that differed significantly from the placebo group. “These data support the idea that a higher dose of omega-3 is not necessarily better than a lower dose in terms of prevention of inflammation,” said Martha Belury, another co-author of the study.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) considers a daily omega-3 supplement providing 3g/day to be safe. Even though the dosages used in this study were within FDA-approved measures, the researchers did not attempt to extend their findings to make a general, potentially-misleading recommendation concerning supplementation. The team notes that omega-3 supplementation should not take place of good health behaviors and food selections, but individuals with diagnosed inflammatory diseases will likely benefit from regular use.
ANNUAL BOOK DRIVE SPONSORED BY THE ROTARY CLUB OF WILMETTE
The Rotary Club of Wilmette has just begun its annual Book Drive. It begins October 1 and runs through November 16. Gently-used books are collected from schools, libraries, students and private individuals. These books are distributed to inner-city schools in Chicago that would not otherwise have access to a good library. These books are primarily for disadvantaged children to take home to read, share with siblings, and make them their own.
PFTL would like to help with this worthwhile effort. If you have any books that are no longer being used, and are suitable for grades K-8, please bring them to the studio, or contact me (Debora Morris) to pick them up. Thanks in advance for your assistance.
The Rotary Club is an amazing organization; their members are committed to trying to make the world a better place through improving educational opportunities for all people, eradicating crippling diseases, providing medical and humanitarian assistance where needed and supporting local community as well.
NOW IS THE TIME TO ENJOY OUTSIDE ACTIVITIES – COOL TEMPS AND WONDERFUL AUTUMN COLORS. SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR??