Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category
November 16, 2012
It’s getting chilly out there! The team at Life Line Screening have been wrapping up warm, packing away our summer things, and looking forward to our hearty dinners. But it doesn’t all have to be pies and stodge, there are a number of deliciously healthy options to keep you cosy this Winter.
One of our favourites is this hearty meatball soup from Fitness Magazine – a quick and easy option for those looking for a warming tasty treat, without the usual guilt.
So, pop on some fluffy socks, throw on a snugly jumper, and grab a pan!
1/2 pound 93 percent lean ground beef
6 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
6 tablespoons plain bread crumbs
1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, finely chopped (about 2 cups)
2 carrots, peeled and cut into coins
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
8 cups packed shredded escarole, rinsed and drained
3 cans (14 ounces each) low-sodium chicken broth
Place the beef, bread crumbs, parsley, salt, pepper, eggs, and four tablespoons of parmesan into a bowl and squish it all together.
Make the mixture into 24 meatballs, using a level tsp for each one.
Heat 1tbs of oil over a medium to high heat and add the meatballs. Cook each side until browned all over, remove from pan and put to one side
Add another tbs of oil to the pot and add onions, carrots, and garlic. Cook for 10 minutes, or until soft.
Stir in escarole and cook for 3 minutes
Add the meatballs and the broth
Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes
Serve with a sprinkle of parmesan
Will you give this recipe a try? Or do you have a favourite winter warmer dish? Tell us all about it in the comments or via Twitter @life_lineuk.
To learn more about maintaining a healthy lifestyle and for more tasty recipes, please visit Life Line Screening’s healthy living pages.
September 5, 2012
A recent study found that online and computer-based treatment programmes can help people lose weight and keep it off. For those who can’t spare the money and time that face-to-face counselling requires can use online alternatives to help keep their body and heart healthy.
One new piece of technology that aims to help people keep fit and healthy is the FitBit. The FitBit is one of the newest products to have arisen out of the new trend of ‘self quantification’. Using your personal day-to-day data to chart your progress is a highly effective way of motivating yourself to engage in a healthy lifestyle. The user experience can be enhanced with apps like My Fitness Pal which track your food intake, and GPS exercise self tracker, Endomondo.
Over the past few weeks, the Life Line team has been testing out some FitBits and we’ve found them very addictive! We’re competing to take the most steps each day – a wonderfully simple way of making your daily routine just a bit healthier and keeping us fit. You can even track your sleep, which is another key element in feeling happy and healthy.
For more information and advice on maintaining a healthy lifestyle, view our Healthy Living resources now. To learn more about how you can benefit from a preventive health screening, get in touch with us at Life Line Screening today.
Do you use any online or computer-based treatment programmes to keep fit and healthy? Do you fancy trying a FitBit or something similar? Tell us all about it in the comments below!
August 20, 2012
Now that the excitement, the glory and the medals of the recent events in the UK have died down, the capital is slowly returning to its usual self. Getting caught up in the action, we were blown away by the incredible skill and commitment demonstrated by athletes from across the globe. Perhaps you were inspired to get back to the gym, or out on the running track. Maybe you dusted off your football shirt, or your hockey stick, and reacquainted yourself with your favourite sporting event.
This summer’s events have promised to create a “healthier, happier, more active nation” and people are looking to the government to provide more funding and more incentives to people of all ages to get up and moving. Hugh Robertson, the minister for sport, is quoted as saying that the “Government is failing to act in a consistent way to ensure that the [recent events] help us tackle one of our greatest health threats – sedentary lifestyles.”
The statistics speak for themselves. According to a recent Lancet study, “physical inactivity was responsible for 6-10% of cases of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, breast and colon cancer globally – and 9% of premature deaths”. What’s more, Britain is one of the laziest nations in the developed world, with 63.3% of us failing to get the recommended amount of physical activity.
The main thrust of discussion following the amazing sport witnessed over the past couple of months, has been inspiring children and young people to get involved, but we mustn’t forget the impact of healthy living throughout our lives. As recently highlighted by two reports, exercise in middle age, and even in over-70s is vital to a maintaining a healthy body.
Have you been inspired by recent events? What are your favourite ways to exercise?
If you are worried about your heart’s health, or other health issues covered by our preventive health screening programmes, explore the different ways you can maintain a healthy lifestyle or make simple changes to benefit your body and mind. To learn more about screenings designed to identify your health status, get in touch with us at Life Line Screening today.
July 27, 2012
This week is Love Parks Week in the UK – the UK’s largest celebration of green spaces. Parks across the country will be holding events to get people out and about – from cycle-rides in Liverpool to football tournaments in Kennington, there’s sure to be something for everyone! Get your family together and have a picnic in the sunshine, or just go for a walk. You could count butterflies in Dams to Darnley Country Park or practice Tai Chi in LeechWell Garden. You could go to the Big Family Tree Climb in Stourhead, Wiltshire or discover bats after dusk in Kensington Gardens.
However you get involved, being out in the sun could lower your stress levels, exercise your heart and bring you together with family and friends, all at once! What better way could there be of looking after your heart and your health than at one of Love Parks Week’s great events.
Is there an event in your local area? Are you planning to go along? Tell us all about it.
June 22, 2012
With National Transplant Week fast approaching, we have seen significant developments in organ and tissue transplant legislation.
A new ‘presumed consent’ policy, regarding the Wales Organ Donation Bill White Paper, proposes that at the age of 18 years Welsh citizens can either opt to donate or not donate their organs and tissue for transplantation. The key aspect of change and potential contention is that the responsibility lies with the person to specify their choice. If a decision on organ donation is not made, it will be taken as confirmation that they are happy to donate. Referred to as the ‘soft launch for the soft opt-out’ by the BBC, this policy is due to come into force in 2015.
“We are seeking a change in the law to increase the number of organ and tissue donors and to save lives. One donor can improve or save the lives of up to nine other people by donating their organs and many more through the donation of their tissues.” highlighted Lesley Griffiths, the Welsh Government’s Health Minister.
In essence, ‘presumed consent’ means changing the default choice on organ donation; it is assumed that a person wants to donate their organs, unless stated otherwise, whereas the current system assumes the opposite.
In a previous statement on the Wales Organ Donation Bill White Paper the NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) organisation cites research in support of the legislation that “most people in the UK would accept an organ if they needed a transplant but only 29% of us have committed to donate an organ after our death by joining the Organ Donor Register (ODR).” And that the NHSBT “welcomes any change that encourages people to discuss and support organ donation and will work within whatever legislative framework is introduced… As the UK Organ Donor Organisation, NHSBT will be involved in implementation of the new policy.”
Despite this, there are naturally counter perspectives and religious groups have expressed concern in response to the policy change. A recent statement from bishops of the Church of Wales echoed a feeling often present in discussions on the topic that it is important to maintain the notion of an organ being donated as a ‘gift’, rather than taken.
What are your thoughts on organ donation? Do you feel that ‘presumed consent’ is a step in the right direction?
June 12, 2012
Diabetes Week is an annual campaign, which takes place this week, from 10th to 16th June. The event is championed by the UK’s foremost diabetes charity Diabetes UK, who has been asking people to “Make a Connection” and spread awareness, support and raise funding for diabetes sufferers across the UK. Throughout a variety of activities, including a recent Guinness World Record attempt for the most waists measured in 8 hours, Diabetes UK aims to support over 10 million people across the UK who have either been diagnosed with diabetes or are at a high risk of developing the condition.
Diabetes (also known as diabetes mellitus) is a condition where the body is not able to adequately control blood sugar levels:
Type 1 – This is where body does not produce insulin, the hormone needed to process glucose for energy. This is the least common of the two, accounting for around 10% of cases in the UK. Treatment and maintenance of Type 1 diabetes includes regular injections of insulin to enable the body function correctly.
Type 2 – Type 2 diabetes is far more common and is where the body doesn’t produce enough insulin or the insulin produced does not work properly. This condition can largely be controlled through a healthy diet and monitoring blood glucose level. Type 2 is progressive however and can, on some occasions, develop into Type 1.
Here at Life Line Screening we test for Type 2 diabetes using a glucose screening that tests for blood sugar levels, helping to not only identify diabetes, but also provide information about how those who have already been diagnosed are managing the condition.
A recent BBC article has highlighted the importance of an “early and aggressive” screening approach to reducing the number of diabetes cases among those who are close to developing the condition. Blood sugar levels typically rise ahead of reaching a diabetic level of glucose (measured in milligrams per decilitre, or mg/dL), an indicator that the patient could be pre-diabetic. Bringing this level back within a healthy range can, in some cases actually prevent a pre-diabetic from developing diabetes – an important consideration, given that those with pre-diabetes are five to six times more likely to develop diabetes and are also at greater risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD).
International Diabetes Federation – World Diabetes Day 14th November
June 1, 2012
Stroke Awareness Month is annually held throughout the month of May. And on 1st May this year the Stroke Association launched Life After Stroke Campaign, following a report that stroke survivors are being denied the best chance of recovery, typically feeling abandoned on leaving hospital.
National Stroke Awareness Month was established in the US government in 1989. Since then the campaign has continued to grow form strength to strength and is largely co-ordinated by The Stroke Association in the UK, a national charity that has been working to raise awareness of all aspects of the condition ranging from prevention to recovery, and the organisation is active in funding research.
Key messages include how to identify signs of stroke fast, with the Act F.A.S.T. campaign, which can make a real difference to those affected. Preventive measures are also important and healthy living, such as keeping active and avoiding excessive alcohol consumption have a positive impact, where as risk factors such as smoking, can double the risk of suffering a stroke.
There is much more to discover about stroke and currently we do not fully understand the impacts and best road to recovery. Therefore, it is important to be able to offer support and information. This is particularly understandable as there is still much to be learnt about what causes stroke, how it affects people and how to promote effective recovery. There is much more to learn from a medical perspective too and “research funded by the Stroke Association has the ultimate aim of making stroke a preventable and treatable disease, and improving the quality of life for people affected by stroke.” And many may have seen the recent breakthrough development in testing for stroke using a simple drawing test.
There have been a myriad of activities across the UK from an art exhibition to the Bolton Wanderers FC players warming up in new Stroke Association t-shirts ahead of the Bolton Wanderers vs West Brom match. This month also saw the opening of the new Life After Stroke Centre in Bromsgrove, West Midlands and people have raised awareness by getting involved in events such as the Thames Bridge Bike Ride, Edinburgh Marathon Festival, BUPA Great Manchester 10k run and the Great Swim in London, to name but a few.
We’d love to hear how you got involved during Stroke Awareness Month!
May 31, 2012
Today is World No Tobacco Day, an annual opportunity to raise awareness of the negative effects that smoking can have on one’s health. The day itself in fact goes beyond this to educate people about the shortcomings of the tobacco industry.
This year we will be celebrating World No Tobacco Day on Thursday 31st May. The day is organised, coordinated and promoted by the World Health Organisation (WHO), who have chosen to focus this year’s campaign on the interference of the tobacco industry.
“The campaign will focus on the need to expose and counter the tobacco industry’s brazen and increasingly aggressive attempts to undermine global tobacco control efforts” describe the World Health Organisation of their Tobacco Free Initiative (TFI). The WHO seeks to monitor this industry through surveillance and regulation and have published a paper and global brief on the topic.
There has been a seismic shift in societal and cultural attitudes to smoking and the tobacco industry as a whole since the early 20s, back when it actually used to be considered beneficial to wellbeing.
Ultimately, smoking is a risk factor. The more frequently and the longer that someone smokes the higher their risk, the more likely, they are to experience associated health issues.
Since the introduction of the smoking ban the legal age to smoke has been raised from 16 to 18 years of age and more recently, tobacco and associated paraphernalia has been moved behind closed doors, so to speak, as it is now illegal to display these products for sale. However it is also important to consider that although there has been a significant reduction the amount of smoking. There is still a strong campaign regarding the risks of passive smoking, in particular the impact this can have on children.
Life Line Screening is thrilled that this year sees the 5-year celebration of the UK smoking ban. In 2010 the British Medical Journal (BMJ) reported on the short term impact of the smoke-free legislation in England, in terms of hospital admissions for myocardial infarction (heart attack). The research found that this resulted in 1200 less emergency admissions and 1600 less readmissions for a heart attack in the first year following the change in policy. The reduction was most significant among men and women over 60 years. This has also been widely assisted by improved support for those who wish to quit smoking.
May 18, 2012
We all know that walking is good for us, there’s no two ways about it. The Government recommendation is that we should be aiming for at least half an hour a day of physical exercise to remain healthy. For those with a busy lifestyle – a demanding job, a family, a retirement of social plans – it’s important to make and keep good habits in order to remain fit and healthy.
Walk to Work Week has been taking place during the 14-18th of May. It is a week dedicated to raising awareness of the health and environmental benefits of walking, as well as encouraging people to experience and value the quality of the streets around them. Walk to Work Week is organised by Living Streets, the national charity that stands up for pedestrians and work to create safe, attractive streets for the public.
“When we have streets we want to walk in, lives are transformed – we are healthier, happier and more sociable.”
- Living Streets
On Tuesday Transport Minister Norman Baker stepped out in support of Walk to Work Week in a bid to raise awareness and join the many people across the country that have been taking to their streets and work places on foot. As this week draws to a close we have a great opportunity to reflect of how much walking we’ve done throughout the week and a chance for a final push.
In conjunction with Walk to Work Week, Living Streets have organised The Great British Walking Challenge. Whereby people can simply sign up and start counting their walking miles towards the nation’s totals, measured by total miles, calories burned and CO2 emissions saved by walking instead of using forms of transport with a negative environmental impact. If you haven’t had a chance to join in yet Life Line Screening would urge to add the walking that you’ve clocked up for the week – which currently stands at an impressive 7,274,216 Calories (or 13,946 muffins burned), 75,617 miles (or 3.04 times around the world) and 13,089 kg CO2 saved! You might also want to check out the mobile application designed for the government initiative Walk4Life, for walks in your area and the ability track how long you usually walk for.
Walking is an excellent activity for a number of reasons, not least because it doubles up as a mode of transport. It raises the heart rate and improves circulation, as oxygenated blood travels around the body to supply cells in need, invigorating both the muscular and respiratory systems. There has long been a debate surrounding the benefits of walking in comparison to running. So, to compare, the average person who weighs 73 kilograms (160 lbs) will burn approximately 530 calories running for an hour, or just over 300 calories walking during the same time. However, two key factors that walking has going for it is that it has a much lower risk of injury and it is typically to keep walking over longer distances than it is to run, especially without training.
Walking is also good for the mind and can provide time to clear your head, have a good think about a problem that you’ve being trying to solve, or simply take in the scenery.
So, these are some our favourite suggestions to get walking more here at Life Line Screening:
- A classic, always take the stairs instead of the lift.
- Make it a new habit to walk to work. Have a think about your route and how long you will need and plan out your journey.
- Make the most of lunch. Why not split your lunch instead of one longer break so you can pop out for some fresh air and a short walk twice. Or, how about trying to eat somewhere a bit further away than usual and explore your local area.
- Be sociable. Walking with others, you’ll find that time flies.
- Similarly, listen to music. It’s a great way to let your mind wander and a nice way to enjoy music or the radio.
- Walk on the phone. You’ll be surprised how much you move about while you’re thinking about something else.
What do you enjoy most about walking? Do you have a favourite walk? We’d love to know. To read more on healthy living and to book your next health screening with Life Line Screening visit www.lifelinescreening.co.uk.
Today is the final day of Walk to Work Week – make it count!
May 17, 2012
“I decided that knowledge is power and that the power of prevention is a good thing.”
Here at Life Line Screening we were really pleased to read the glowing review from blogger Super Amazing Mum.
A few months ago we invited Super Amazing Mum to review our services. We are sure that there will be those that will understand her feeling of concern about “…how I and my loved ones would react if I did find out I was likely to have a heart attack in my 40s or my bone density indicated early onset of osteoporosis.” But she goes on to decide that she is in good hands with Life Line Screening, where we have carried out over 7 million health checks since 1993 and comments that she feels “positive about having a hand in my future health.”
Taking this proactive approach to health by responsibly addressing health risks and leading a healthy lifestyle is something that very much advocate here at Life Line Screening.
Having a partial view of her family history and a long-term health condition Super Amazing Mum goes on to detail the stages of a set of 5 vital screenings; from the initial phone interview with one of our consultants and scheduling a date for the health screenings, through to the timings, warmth of the staff and experience of each medical test.
We are happy to hear she had a great experience. To read the post in full, visit the Super Amazing Mum blog.