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March 2009
Spring Health Lectures   
Close-up of apple blossoms
      Our new lecture series begins on Wednesday with a presentation by an engaging gerontologist. All lectures are free to the public and will be at Santa Clara County Library locations, which co-host these events. To learn more about an event, click on its title; we invite you to post these flyers in public places.
   
Intimacy, Sex and Vitality:
What We Need to Know in Later Years
Wed., March 17, 10:30 a.m.-Noon    Saratoga Library
  

Aromatherapy and Your Health
Tues., April 6, 7-8:30 p.m.               Campbell Library
  
Heart-Healthy Cooking:
How a Scientific Wife Took Her Husband's Heart Disease Seriously and Re-designed Their Favorite Recipes
Sat., April 10, 3-4:30 p.m.                 Milpitas Library
   
Fitness for the Rest of Us:
Exercise for Every Body, Size, Shape, and Age
Wed., April 14, 1:30-3 p.m.           Morgan Hill Library
   
A Matter of Balance,   
logo for the South Bay Vestibular Support Group
...a program utilized nationally to help older adults manage falls, increase activity levels, and maintain independence, is presented locally by the South Bay Vestibular Support Group. Beginning April 3, H2U will again sponsor the program's eight, Saturday-morning sessions at Good Samaritan Hospital. Space is limited for this free program. To register or obtain more information, contact Al Mofrad by email or phone at (408) 256-2459.
  
News You Can Use    
      In recognition of National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, March's News You Can Use column is focused entirely on colorectal cancer (CRC) screening and how you can make your screening safer, more effective, and more comfortable.
     Many Americans avoid getting Virtual colonoscopy imagestested for colorectal cancer and its easily eliminated precursor, precancerous polyps. Yet screening allows abnormalities to be caught early, when they can be treated very successfully.
     For a quick summary of CRC screening basics, this fact sheet from the CDC is excellent.
     Advice regarding how, and how often, people should be screened varies slightly among different guidelines. However, the guidelines agree that screening should begin at age 50, unless one has risk factors indicating an earlier start. The recommendations of four organizations are compared in an American Family Physician article. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force guideline recommends that routine optical screening (sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy) should be discontinued for many people over 75, and for everyone over 85, as risks begin to outweigh benefits for elders.
     New technology and research bring new issues to light. The value of computed tomographic colonography (CTC) is not yet resolved. A recent study suggestsWinter 2008-2009 issue of that this "virtual colonoscopy" may eventually be deemed a safe and effective screening tool, even for older patients. Some research suggests that for women, colonoscopy may be a more effective screening tool than sigmoidoscopy.
     When planning a colonoscopy, you may be interested in -
  An online video about the procedure.
  Tips on questions to ask your examining physician and on scheduling your exam for optimum results.
  A simple way to increase your comfort and improve the procedure's effectiveness.
  Information about various bowel purgatives, plus suggestions for more pleasantly and completely clearing your colon.
  
     And finally, you can lower your odds of ever having colorectal cancer. That's the best news of all! 
In This Issue
A Matter of Balance
News You Can Use
Dining Out for Life
Book Group
  

Hospice of the Valley logo

    Join Hospice of the Valley for their Spring Open House on Friday, March 19, from 5 to 7 p.m. A highlight of the evening will be their Journey of Hope art exhibit, with the process of loss and healing depicted in pieces by adults and children.
   

Dining Out for Life
  
Alarm clock on an unmade bed
     Enjoy a meal at a participating restaurant on Thursday, April 29, and 25% of your food bill will benefit HealthTrust AIDS Services.
  
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   Book Group  

Cover of book, Mindless Eating

     On the website for Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think, the author (and director of the Cornell University Food and Brand Lab), Brian Wansink, writes - "Twenty years of my research can be summarized in saying 'People's tastes are not formed by accident.'...We overeat because of family and friends, packages and plates, names and numbers, labels and lights, colors and candles, shapes and smells, distractions and distances, cupboards and containers."
    Join our discussion on Saturday, April 3.

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