As the Thermometer Rises

As the thermometer rises, so should your consumption of water and water-rich foods. Water is essential to all body tissues and plays a key role in keeping our body running correctly. Water and other non-caffeinated drinks are an obvious choice to keep hydrated in the summer months that bring increasing heat and activity, but in addition to water, there are several foods that help to hydrate us as well. Celery, cucumbers, raw cabbage, watermelon, broccoli, milk, spinach, zucchini, tomatoes, green beans, carrots, oranges and apples all have over 80% water composition. Additionally, soups, smoothies, and low-fat milk are all 100% liquid. In addition to providing a hydrating boost, these water and nutrient-rich foods have been found (in one study) to help in the reduction of weight gain as well. Researchers at Penn State found that water-rich foods helped individuals eat less and thus, maintain a healthy body weight. They found that water incorporated into food, but not served with a food, was the key. Bottom line, keep your hydration levels up with plenty of liquids and plenty of nutrient dense fruit and veggies to keep your system in tip-top shape!

As the thermometer rises, so should your consumption of water and water-rich foods. Water is essential to all body tissues and plays a key role in keeping our body running correctly. Water and other non-caffeinated drinks are an obvious choice to keep hydrated in the summer months that bring increasing heat and activity, but in addition to water, there are several foods that help to hydrate us as well. Celery, cucumbers, raw cabbage, watermelon, broccoli, milk, spinach, zucchini, tomatoes, green beans, carrots, oranges and apples all have over 80% water composition. Additionally, soups, smoothies, and low-fat milk are all 100% liquid. In addition to providing a hydrating boost, these water and nutrient-rich foods have been found (in one study) to help in the reduction of weight gain as well. Researchers at Penn State found that water-rich foods helped individuals eat less and thus, maintain a healthy body weight. They found that water incorporated into food, but not served with a food, was the key. Bottom line, keep your hydration levels up with plenty of liquids and plenty of nutrient dense fruit and veggies to keep your system in tip-top shape!

Your Parent Has Dementia: What to Talk to Their Doctor About

Make sure all their doctors are aware of all the medications she is taking.

Q: My mom is 94 and has dementia. She is taking a whole medicine cabinet-full of medications and I think they actually make her fuzzier. How should I talk to her various doctors about what she is taking and if she can get off some of the meds? — Gary R., Denver, Colorado

A: Many dementia patients are taking what docs call a "polypharmacy" — three or more medications that affect their central nervous system. And we really don't know how that mixture truly affects each individual person.

A new study in JAMA Network that looked at more than 1 million Medicare patients found almost 14% of them were taking a potentially harmful mix of antidepressants, antipsychotics, antiepileptics, benzodiazepines such as Valium and Ativan, nonbenzodiazepine benzodiazepine receptor agonist hypnotics such as Ambien or Sonata, and opioids. And almost a third of those folks were taking five or more such medications. The most common medication combination included an antidepressant, an antiepileptic, and an antipsychotic. Gabapentin was the most common medication — often for off-label uses, such as to ease chronic pain or treat psychiatric disorders, according to the researchers from the University of Michigan.

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