Angel News
October 2009
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Resources: Immunization Awareness
In This Issue
Tune Out for Less Stress
You Snooze, You Win
How Multi-taskers Lose
Alzheimer's is One of Eight
Think Turmeric

Turmeric, a spice found in curry, appears to reduce the inflammation that can lead to brain cell destruction, and appears to contain important ingredients to boost memory. The positive effects on memory may be related to the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of turmeric.

More information on eating for better memory is available here.

Test Your Food IQ

Take a quiz to test your Food IQ on eating right to stay healthier and younger longer.

The quiz is available here.

"If we can delay the onset of Alzheimer's by five years, by some estimates we can cut the incidence of Alzheimer's in half. If we can delay the disease by 10 years, we could almost eliminate it because people would die from other conditions first."
--Stephen Rao, in the journal Neurology
Feed a Cold, Starve a Fever?

While being sick might kill your appetite, trying to force-feed will not help, it seems. What will help is staying hydrated and getting enough calories. A recent study in the Journal of Nutrition found that mice exposed to the flu took longer to recover and were more likely to suffer ill effects if they were on a low-calorie diet. Recommendation from the researchers? Skip dieting until after flu season.

Read more debunking of myths about the common cold here.
Join Our Mailing List

Flu season is knocking on the doorstep, and with that in mind, Visiting Angels of Central Burlington & Mercer Counties believes a little "chicken soup" for the mind and body is in order to provide an informational defense against illness. It's all about treating your body right by reducing stress, eating right, getting plenty of rest and exercise and not being afraid to ask for help when things get to be a little too much. In a spirit of sharing and community, we hope you will find the included news informative and beneficial.

Thank you,

Visiting Angels of Central Burlington & Mercer Counties
Finding the Work-Home Balance

In today's fast paced lifestyles, many are torn between juggling heavy workloads, managing relationships and family responsibilities, and squeezing in outside interests. One in four Americans actually describes himself as "super stressed." And when stress levels increase, productivity decreases. Not only can stress impair concentration, but it can cause irritability and depression, weaken immune systems, increase susceptibility to a variety of ailments, and personal and professional relationships.

Balance! That is the key. Here are a few practical steps to get that balance back while at home:
  • Turn off your PDA/Blackberry/iPhone.
  • Divide and conquer.
  • Don't over-commit.
  • Get support.
  • Take advantage of your company's Employee Assistance Program (EAP).
  • Stay active.
  • Treat your body right.
  • Get help if you need it.
Read the full article here to find out how to start working on balancing work and life for better health.

Perhaps a stress level check might be helpful to see how events you have experienced in your life in the last year are affecting you.

Take the online test here. Check any event that applies to you; then click on "Calculate My Total Stress Units" to get your score.
Sleeping Smart?

As part of a campaign called "Sleeping Smart", a survey was conducted to see if Americans really are making smart choices when it comes to sleeping. The survey found that nearly 60 percent of those at increased risk for insomnia say that their symptoms affect their daily activities at least a few days a week. Many people at increased risk for insomnia say trouble falling or staying asleep impacts their:
  • Mood (73%)
  • Attention/Concentration (63%)
  • Family Relationships (42%)
  • Job Performance (36%)
Yet, only half of those at increased risk for insomnia have actually initiated a conversation with their health care professional about their sleep issues. So, it seems that Americans are really NOT using their brains when it comes to sleeping smart.

Read more on results of the Sleeping Smart survey here.
Losing Brains to Media Multi-tasking May Be Harmful

A new study reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests that people who regularly perform multiple tasks in a variety of media (texting, instant messaging, online video watching, word processing, Web surfing, etc.) do worse on tests in which they need to switch attention from one task to another than people who rarely multi-task in this way. Specifically, heavy multi-taskers are more easily distracted by irrelevant information. One reason is possibly that the multi-taskers tend to retain the distracting information in their short-term memory, which affects their ability to focus.

These results, according to the abstract of the study, demonstrate that media multi-tasking, a rapidly growing societal trend, is associated with a distinct approach to fundamental information processing.

Suggested solutions: Turn off your BlackBerry/iPhone and schedule checking email at regular intervals.

Read more here.

Read an abstract of the study here.
Dementia Definition and Types

Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of dementia, which is defined as a clinical syndrome that includes loss or decline in memory and other cognitive abilities. According to a recent article in the Alzheimer's Reading Room, there are many causes for dementia:  AIDS, high fever, dehydration, hydrocephalus, systemic lupus erythematosus, Lyme disease, long-term drug or alcohol abuse, vitamin deficiencies, poor nutrition, hypothyroidism or hypercalcemia, multiple sclerosis, or brain tumor. However, dementia can also result from a head injury that causes hemorrhaging in the brain or a reaction to a medication.

There are eight different types of dementia:
Alzheimer's, Vascular dementia, mixed dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies, Parkinson's disease, Frontotemporal dementia, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, and normal pressure hydrocephalus.

In addition to a decline in memory, dementia includes at least one of the following cognitive inabilities which must be severe enough to interfere with daily life:
  • Ability to generate coherent speech and understand spoken or written language;
  • Ability to recognize or identify objects, assuming intact sensory function;
  • Ability to execute motor activities, assuming intact motor abilities, sensory function and comprehension of the required task;
  • Ability to think abstractly, make sound judgments and plan and carry out complex tasks.
Read more about each type of dementia here.
Visiting Angels of Central Burlington & Mercer Counties:
About Our Care

Visiting Angels of Central Burlington & Mercer Counties is a New Jersey-licensed, non-medical home care company committed to going well beyond the "industry standard" to provide an exceptional level of security, comfort and peace of mind to our clients and their loved ones. Our "Angels", all certified home health professionals, are ready to provide compassionate and dependable assistance with the activities of everyday living to seniors, the disabled, those recovering from surgery and to those who are simply frail. Our services include such simple tasks as light housekeeping, meal preparation, errands and shopping to more personal tasks such as hygiene assistance, bathing, dressing and grooming.
Visiting Angels' in-home care helps make it possible for seniors and adults with special needs to continue to live at home and maintain the independence of their daily routines and familiar surroundings, for as long as they can do so safely. We truly understand how challenging and alien the entire home care selection process can be ... and we are experienced in working with families; with loved ones "resistant" to receiving care; and with third-parties payors (such as insurance companies and the US Dept. of Veterans Affairs) to help insure that the best interests of the family and their loved ones are met. Visiting Angels' services help families spend more mutually-rewarding and meaningful time with their loved ones and also helps provide comfort and peace of mind to those who face the challenge of long-distance caregiving.
For more information, please visit our website,; call us at 609-883-8188; or contact us by email at