Road traffic noise linked to heightened risk of midriff bulge

Recent research indicated that noise from traffic, airplanes, and trains could be responsible for expanding waistlines.

According to the research result, there was an association between road traffic noise and waist size, with a 0.21 cm increase for every additional 5 dB increase in exposure, although this was only significant among women.

At the same point, there was a link to waist:hip ratio, with a change of 0.16 for every 5 dB increase in noise exposure to road, this is specifically for men.

In addition, when people were exposed to more noise pollution at the same time, they had higher possibility to get central obesity.

However, socioeconomic factors, and lifestyle do not affect the findings, age is a critical factor. Those who are below the age of 60 are found the connection between central obesity and road traffic noise.

TIPS for preventing from traffic noise:

Barrier Wall: Construct a barrier wall between your home and the source of the traffic noise.

Buildings: consider putting up buildings to block the traffic noise place a garage, a storage shed.

Water feature: water features do not reduce traffic noise, but they provide a more pleasant background sound, helping to mask it.

Hedges: hedges are not dense enough to combat loud road noise on their own.

SOURCE for help: Road Noise Impact Control


Teen Pregnancy Rate among Asian Girls in Minnesota

Compared to American overall teen pregnancy rates, Asian girls have much higher teen pregnancy rate. Here are facts which may contribute to higher teen pregnancy rate among Asian girls in Minnesota.

Here are some facts which may contribute to higher teen pregnancy among sian girls in Minnesota:

According to the report from CDC, Minnesota teens have a higher rate of LARC use than the national average. Also, the access to go to health care provider, and the use of effective birth control methods, including IUDs, and the implants, these may affect the teen pregnancy rate among Asian girls in Minnesota. All adolescents, but especially youth of color, need comprehensive and culturally competent sexual and reproductive health care. However, those of color teens face serious barrier related to sexual and reproductive health care.

Low-income and insecure family situations increased the rate of teen pregnancy among Asian girls.

In addition, weight perception, mispeception, and dating violence victimization are critical contributors to teen pregnancy rate.

Some teens don’t use condoms because they are afraid of being found by their parents. And social discrimination will significantly increase teen pregnancy rate. AAPI population has a lower social status and faces serious discrimination at their lives.

Finally, substance abuse is related to teen pregnancy. There is a higher percentage of substance abuse among AAPI population, it also increases the teen pregnancy rate.


Teenager pregnancy awareness

Wednesday, May 6, will mark the 14th annual National Day to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. It is organized and overseen by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unintended Pregnancy, the National Day is supported by almost 200 organizational partners; in 2013, almost 500,000 individuals participated.

The rate of teenager pregnancy among AAPI population is much higher than national level in the United States. Therefore, it is important to get our attention on teenager pregnancy issue.

Tips to prevent teenage pregnancy:

1. Be clear about your own sexual value

2. Talk with your children early and often about sex and be specific

3. supervises and monitors your children and adolscents

4. Know your children’s friends and families

5. Discourage early, frequent and steady dating

6. Take a stand against your daughter dating a boy significantly older

7. Help your children have more attractive options for the future than early pregnancy and parenthood

8. Let your children know you value education highly

9. Know what your children are watching, listening to and reading

10. Have a closer relationship with your children at an early age

Additional resources for teenage pregnancy help:

Everyday Miracles


FamilyWise Services (formerly Genesis II for Families)


Heling Us Grow (HUG)


Hennepin County Child Care Assistance


Hennepin County Child & Teen Checkups




Flu Season

What Is Flu Season?

Flu season is the time of year when the flu virus is most common. Flu season usually begins when cold weather appears. It’s simply a characteristic of the flu and the time of the seasons.

Outbreaks of the flu occur in different seasonal patterns around the world. In temperate climate zones, flu season will typically begin in the late fall and peak in mid-to-late winter.

Flu Season in the United States

Annual outbreaks of seasonal usually occur during the fall through early spring. In a typical year, approximately 5 to 20 percent of the population gets the seasonal flu. Flu-related deaths range from 3.000 to 48,600 (average 23,600). A seasonal flu vaccine is available.

The overall health impact of the flu varies from year to year. Unfortunately, rates of infection, hospitalizations, and deaths can’t be predicted, but by identifying flu symptoms, and knowing about flu treatment and flu prevention options, you cna be better prepared to face the flu season.

Is It Flu?

Flu Symptoms

Flu symptoms can be mild or severe, and can come on suddenly-be sure you know your flu treatment options so you can be prepared. Symptoms generally appear 1 to 4 days after exposure to the virus.

If you have one or more of the symptoms, you could have the flu.

Flu  Prevention Tips

Don’t have the flu and don’t want to get it? Here some some health habits you can work into your life to minimize the chances of getting the flu.

Wash your hands

The flu virus can spread by direct contact, such as sharing drinks, or through indirect contact, such as when an infected coworker sneezes on her hands, and touches an object like the lunchroom microwave door. The influenza virus can live for 2 to 8 hours on surfaces. During flu season, everyone should wash their hands frequently to reduce the risk of transmitting germs to others.

Wash your hands to prevent flu

Cover your sneezes and coughs

When you sneeze or cough, cover your nose and mouth with a tissue (not your hands), and be sure to throw the tissue away immediately.

You can also cough into your sleeve if you don’t have a tissue handy. Hand sanitizers can also help. Try to avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth to keep germs away.


Quality of calories



Once you have learned your calories consumption every day, you may begin to notice your decreased weight, but it is only the beginning step of right step.

As the picture shows, the fuel produced to your body by 2000 calories of gingerbread cookies is not as same as 2000 calories of meat, vegetable, and fruit.

Your body digests different types of nutrients differently. There  are basic bodily functions of all sorts of nutrients: building muscle, transporting nutrients, storing energy as fat for later use, fueling various muscle. Below are how a person compose a basic meal:

Protein: When you exercise, your muscles are broken down and then use protein to rebuild themselves stronger while recovering. Protein absolutely NEEDS to be a main component of every meal.  Aim for one gram per pound (two grams per KG) of lean body weight, or just do one gram per pound of body weight if you don’t want to do the math – with an upper limit of 200 grams.  Sources of protein include chicken, eggs, beef, pork, fish, nuts, legumes, quinoa, and most dairy products.

Carbohydrates: When you eat carbohydrates, they get converted to glucose (sugar) in your system, which is then used to provide energy for all sorts of body functions to take place.  Vegetables and/or fresh fruit are quality sources of carbohydrates, with grains being less so in my opinion…but we’ll get to more grains later. There are certainly bad carbohydrates (processed carbs, refined grains, and more), and those are the ones we want to avoid.  Unless you’re a marathon runner, you can function with WAY less carbs than you’re probably consuming now.

Fat:  Fat is easily the most misunderstood macro-nutrient in your diet; long story short: fat is absolutely critical to your body and should make up a BIG portion of your daily calories.  Things like avocados, almonds, olive oil, walnuts, and almond butter are great sources of healthy fat (polyunsaturatured and monounsaturated).  If you would like to take saturated fat, then full fat milk, coconut milk, and fatty cuts of meat will provide you with sources of saturated fat.



Asian Cuisine & Foods

-The Popularity & ‘Fusion’ of Asian Cuisine

In general, there are a few different reasons for the growing popularity of Asian food and cuisine in the United State. On the institutional level, it can be seen as a reflection of the increasing globalization and transnational development in the United States. The economic and cultural elements are gradually diffused between countries, for example, food and cuisine are one of the trends.

On the group level, demographic trends play important role on the growth of Asian cuisine. The population of Asian Americans and Asian immigrants increase gradually each year, so do the number of Asian businesses and restaurants.

Finally, on the individual level, Americans are open to accept various elements of diverse culture, such as food. Asian cuisine are referred to “safe” and “easy” ways for Americans to demonstrate their cultural curiosity and openness.

These days, traditional Asian cuisine is changed into a new fusion style of pan-Asian dishes, which is the combined elements and styles of different Asian cultures. Many of these early fusion dishes were synthesized from Thai, Vietnamese, Indian, and Chinese cuisines.

-Health Considerations

Along with being seen as new and trendy, these Asian fusion dishes also appeal to many customers because they tend to be lighter and are perceived to be healthier than other types of “ethnic” cuisine. Currently, many westerners observed the health benefits of Asian foods. Many nutritionists point out that Asian countries have lower rates of heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and many cancers, while these are higher rates in the United States. On the one hand, physical activity such as tai chi in Asian societies helps lower the disease rates; on the other hand, Asian diets are playing important roles on reducing these health problems too.

The Chinese diet depends heavily on grains, fruits, and vegetables. Instead of using meat as the main ingredient in a mean, many dishes are consisted of small amounts of meat, mainly of vegetables as well as rice. Fish is a popular food in many Asian countries, which is an important source to lower the rate of chronic health problems that are higher in the United States. At the same point, drinking green tea is a tradition in most Asian countries, which has many antioxidant benefits.





The Healing Powers of Dance

A patient who has the chronic autoimmune disease, was experienced the point of immobility and debilitating pain. She took a modern dance class even though her doctor told her that she wasn’t going to get well. At the beginning, she could only watch, but she was emotionally impressed by its beauty. She never gave up and finally she could participate in the modern dance class. First, she began the simple action such as the deep breathe during the class, then she stand for longer periods during the class. After many years of dogged practice, she became physically stronger, mentally clearer. It was so transformative and healing to me.

The healing power of dance may not be the answer to every health crisis, but there is no doubt that it can benefit the body and mind in many ways.

Here are some obvious physical effects of dance:

1) boost cardiovascular health and bone strength

2) improve balance and flexibility

According to a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine investigated the effect leisure activities had on the risk of dementia in the elderly. Researchers found that frequent dancing was the only physical activity of the 9 studied that appeared to lower the participants’ risk of dementia considerably. Joe Verghese, who is the lead author of the study and the professor of  neurology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, explained that he didn’t know the reasons for the unique effect of dancing, but he guessed that, “compared with other physical activities, dancing involved many significant mental effort and social interactions.” Both intellectual and social stimulation have been shown to reduce the risk of getting dementia.

According to Citlali Lopezortiz, the research scientist at the rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, dance can also help Parkinson’s patients. She concentrated on helping the patients find new ways of moving and to improve the speed at which they move. For example, Llopez-Ortiz taught the students slow, ballet-like movements. Sometimes, she took the class to see the Joffrey Ballet for inspiration. With time, her students often become more mobile, and more confident.

Bi-cultural Healthy Living

Benefit of dancing

Dance has physical and mental health benefits. Dancing is an exercise which helps keep fit. There are many different dancing types, such as, ballet, belly dancing, salsa, ballroom dancing, hip-hop, square-dancing and tap dancing.

Dance has physical and mental health benefits. Dancing is good exercise and a fun way to keep fit. Ballet, belly dancing, salsa, ballroom dancing, hip-hop, square-dancing and tap dancing are different dancing styles. Currently, dance has always been a part of human culture, rituals and celebrations. And it is a relaxed way to be actively and keep fit.

Here are the physical and mental benefits of dance:

1) improved condition of your heart and lungs

2) increased muscular strength, endurance and motor fitness

3) increased aerobic fitness

4) improved muscle tone and strength

5) weight management

6) stronger bones and reduced risk of osteoporosis

7) better coordination, agility and flexibility

8) improved physical confidence

By the way, learning the general tip for dancing is important to keep healthy too. Below are some suggestions for dancing:

1) see your doctor for a check-up if you have a medical condition, are overweight, are over 40 years of age or are unfit.

2) wear layers of clothing that you can take off as your body warms up

3) do warm-up stretches or activities before you begin a dance session

4) drink plenty of water before, during and after dancing

5) make sure you rest between dance sessions

6) don’t push yourself too far or too fast, especially if you are a beginner

7) wear professionally fitted shoes appropriate to your style of dance

8) perform regular leg-strengthening exercises

9) move as fluidly and gracefully as you can

10) cool down after a dance session, including stretching




















Culture and Substance Abuse

Culture is defined in many ways. Based on Dwight Health, “Culture is a system of patterns of belief and behavior that shape the worldview of the member of the society. As such, it serves as a guide for action, a cognitive map, and a grammar for behavior.”

In general, substance abuse is related with the alcohol and illicit drugs. Illicit drug will consider culturally and change between different social groups. Substance use and abuse are depended on sociocultural beliefs. Culture plays an important role on affecting individuals about the potential problems they may face with drug use.

For the cultural group who have little exposure to a drug, rapid social changes exceed substance abuse. Such as, Anomie, or called loss of a healthy ethnic or cultural identity, may occur among native populations whose cultures have been devastated by the extensive and sudden influx of outside influence.

Substance use and abuse are related to an individual identity with his or her native culture. For example, native American elders believe that substance abuse are caused  by the loss of traditional culture. Higher rates of substance use have been found in persons who closely identify with non-Native American values and the lowest rates are found in bicultural individuals who are comfortable with both sets of cultural values.