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Healthy Living: HFCS

Updated 4 years ago

What is High Fructose Corn Syrup and why is it bad for you?By- Dr. Joan Marie PellegriniHealthy Living at WABI has in the past covered the dangers of drinking soft drinks because of the hidden sugars and extra calories. However, is it as simple as just extra calories from sugar or is the high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) used as the sweetener that is particularly harmful?First, let me define what the different sugars are: sucrose is our usual table sugar and comes from cane or beet sugar. This is a two-sugar molecule with one glucose and one fructose bonded together. The sugar in our body is glucose. Dextrose is the same as glucose. Fructose is the sugar found in fruit. Fructose has a low glycemic index, which means that it takes a long time for the body to break down, resulting in a slow release of sugar, rather than a sudden rush. For this reason, it is sometimes recommended for diabetics. High fructose corn syrup comes from corn and is a mix of glucose and fructose but with higher percentage of fructose. The sugars in HFCS are single and not bonded together. Regular corn syrup is all glucose.HFCS is less expensive to make and also preserves foods and soft drinks longer than glucose can. It tastes sweeter and has properties than add to food texture. Because of this, food manufacturers prefer HFCS. It did not exist until 1996. All non-diet soft drinks are sweetened with HFCS.All sugars have the same caloric content but the effect on metabolism and hormones may be different. A recent study attempted to look how our bodies may differently metabolize some sugars:Journal of Clinical Investigation, Dr. Peter J. Havel, professor of nutrition at the University of California Davis and lead author of the study randomly assigned 32 overweight or obese men and women to drink three daily servings (25 percent of their daily energy requirements) of a glucose- or fructose-sweetened beverage for 10 weeks. At the end of the study period, both groups had gained similar amounts of weight, but those consuming fructose-sweetened drinks showed an increase in intra-abdominal fat, the kind that embeds itself between tissues in organs, became less sensitive to insulin (the hormone released by the pancreas that controls blood sugar), and showed signs of dyslipidemia-elevated blood levels of lipids. The fructose group also showed increased fat production in the liver, elevated LDL or bad cholesterol and larger increases in blood triglycerides. The group drinking glucose-sweetened beverages showed none of these changes.When fructose is consumed, however, it “appears to behave more like fat with respect to the hormones involved in body weight regulation,” explains Peter Havel, associate professor of nutrition at the University of California, Davis. “Fructose doesn’t stimulate insulin secretion. It doesn’t increase leptin production or suppress production of ghrelin. That suggests that consuming a lot of fructose, like consuming too much fat, could contribute to weight gain.” Glucose helps to control appetite and fat storage.Americans’ obesity problem started about the same time that HFCS came on to the market. It is this association that has led some nutritionists to want to study if HFCS is metabolized differently than regular sugar. Unfortunately there is not much funding for this type of research and therefore there are not that many studies. Also, there are some conflicting studies that seem to come to the opposite conclusion (that HFCS is no worse than other sugars).So, what can I recommend given this controversy? First, it is inconclusive that HFCS is inherently bad. However, because it is present in so many foods and all non-diet sodas, it is an omnipresent source of extra calories. Therefore, you must look at food and drink labels and try to pick the brand that doesn’t have added HFCS. Chances are good that brand will also not have added sugar of any type. It is fair to say that our intake of extra calories is a problem and that the increase in HFCS consumption is not helping. You should avoid food with added sugar regardless of whether it is table sugar or HFCS.

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Making Financial Resolutions for the New Year

Updated 1 year ago

Every year we try to learn from past mistakes and make the upcoming year a better one. But where to start and what to do to make 2011 better financially may be confusing for you. Here are some ideas.How? Think it through- 1.) set reasonable expectations, that typically means LOWER them. You won’t take ALL your money and save it. You could set yourself up to fail if you aren’t reasonable. 2.) expect obstacles and setbacks. What if many of your friends are going away for a winter vacation and you are trying to pay off credit card bills. You want to go, there’s room on the card for more spending…But you could just say no. If you splurge on dinner out instead, that’s what happens. 3.) plan treats and 4.) let others know that you are doing things even smarter this year. What are some good resolutions?- 1.) save more and spend less. 2.) don’t add to credit card debt. 3.) get some advice. Think through the specifics of how much are you going to save. Make it reasonable. Who will you seek advice from? When will you really do this? Marion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com Check out our website that includes weekly streaming videosWWW.NorumbegaFinancial.com Voted Bangor’s Best Financial Planning Firm 2008, 2009 & 2010 by Market Surveys of AmericaIn compliance with requirements from FINRA, all e-mail sent via the WSFG domain will be subject to review and archiving by Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. Email management, archiving & monitoring technology powered by Smarsh, Inc. Disclosure:Only securities and advisory services offered through Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. Registered Investment Advisor. Member FINRA/SIPC. Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. and Norumbega Financial are separate entities, independently owned and operated.

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Has the U.S. political landscape become too extreme?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 36% (152 votes)No 64% (271 votes)


Do you think that Autism is linked to immunization?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 45% (183 votes)No 55% (222 votes)


Will Governor Paul LePage be able to reform the welfare system?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 82% (440 votes)No 18% (97 votes)


Did you buy a Mega Millions lottery ticket?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 19% (41 votes)No 81% (180 votes)


Are you concerned that Paul LePage has still not named all of his cabinet yet?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 13% (43 votes)No 87% (276 votes)


Do You Have a Financial Plan for the New Year?

Updated 1 year ago

What now? Bills are coming in and you are shocked, shocked, to see just how much you spent. What can you do to get the bills paid and to have a strategy for next year? Here are some helpful tips.Credit increases spending- When using a credit card folks may spend 12-18% more than using cash. Some report that credit card use increases spending by 20%. That doesn’t account for the extra money that interest adds to the cost of that gift so lovingly purchased.Paying down debt- Pay more than minimum, Find money in some everyday ‘luxuries,’ use any extra money from overtime or a tax returnWhat’s the plan for 2011- First HAVE a strategy, a plan. The strategy includes several components. First is a budget. The budget could mean the amount you will spend for presents. But it also could be very inclusive dinner at your house with 40 relatives, Christmas cards, maybe even special shopping for holiday outfits. You could use the last few years spending as a guide. You may need to cut it back to perhaps more reasonable amounts if you have lacked a bit of self-control. Now SAVE for the spending. You could also shop very early. Many items, tools, house goods, toys, are available all year so if you have a coupon or there is a special sale, but the item early. Of course you have made a list! Simplify your giving. You can’t give everything you’d like to for everyone you know. You can choose names, only give gifts to kids, you can bake or give the gift of babysitting. If you see lists or controlling spending as a punishment instead of the freeing, empowering thing that I think it is, then you will be always chased by money controlling you, and your past indulgences controlling your future. Marion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com Check out our website that includes weekly streaming videosWWW.NorumbegaFinancial.com Voted Bangor’s Best Financial Planning Firm 2008, 2009 & 2010 by Market Surveys of America In compliance with requirements from FINRA, all e-mail sent via the WSFG domain will be subject to review and archiving by Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. Email management, archiving & monitoring technology powered by Smarsh, Inc. Disclosure:Only securities and advisory services offered through Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. Registered Investment Advisor. Member FINRA/SIPC. Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. and Norumbega Financial are separate entities, independently owned and operated.

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Do you ice fish?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 31% (71 votes)No 69% (160 votes)


Do you make New Year’s Resolutions?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 24% (55 votes)No 76% (178 votes)


Do you think that U.S. citizens should not have the right to protest certain events?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 50% (80 votes)No 50% (80 votes)


Do you get nervous when riding a ski lift?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 7% (13 votes)No 14% (26 votes)I will next time 3% (5 votes)I don’t ski 76% (138 votes)


How do you remove the snow at your house?

Updated 4 years ago

Plow 27% (64 votes)Snowblower 29% (69 votes)Shovel 18% (41 votes)All of the Above 26% (62 votes)


Healthy Living: New Year’s Resolutions

Updated 4 years ago

By: Dr. David PrescottCommon Resolutions for 2011: According to a recent survey cited by Time Magazine, the recent worldwide economic recession seems to be impacting people’s wishes for the New Year. Globally, 40% of people cited improving their economic circumstances as next year’s goal. While many Americans share this goal, favorite U.S. resolutions included: ¨ Developing a healthy habit¨ Losing Weight¨ Getting OrganizedOther common resolutions in our country include quitting smoking, developing a relationship, or getting more education/job qualifications. Do Resolutions Help Us Change? Does setting any type of personal goal make a difference in whether or not we really stick to a change? Research on the impact of resolutions suggests that it does help! However, the majority of people who make some type of New Year’s Resolution find that they don’t make significant progress towards their goal. Psychologists have found that there are some very practical tips for improving your odds of meeting, or at least coming close to meeting, your New Year’s resolution. How Many People Stick to Their Resolution? More often than not, people do not stick to their New Year’s resolution for very long. In one study over two years, about one in five people (20%) are able to keep to their resolution. On the other hand, three in five (60%) dropped their resolution within 6 months. In a recently reported British study, 22% of people reported that they were “very successful” in keeping their resolutions. Interestingly, it doesn’t appear to matter that much what type of resolution you make. For example, people who picked “weight loss” weren’t more or less likely to keep their resolution than people who picked “improve my relationship.” It also doesn’t appear to matter whether you are male vs. female, or old vs. young. Tips for Keeping Your Resolution: What does appear to matter is how you go about specifying your goal, and how you arrange your life to try to meet that goal. Some of the most helpful ways to keep a resolution include the following: · Start Small – Just One Goal: It is usually easier to think of goals than to accomplish them. You have a better chance of progress if you stay focused on just one goal. Accomplishing one goal usually makes you feel better than falling short on many goals, no matter how worthy they are. · Get Some Support from Others: While the motivation to change often comes from within, sticking to your goal in the long run usually requires some support from others. Share your goal with people who will keep you on track. Other people can provide encouragement, ideas, and emotional energy when you feel your motivation start to wane. · Any Action leads to More Action: Doing something is, almost without exception, better than doing nothing when it comes to changing behavior. Changing one small behavior, for example exercising one time a week, usually leads to more and more change. Waiting until you are ready for the “big change” doesn’t work as well as taking one small step. · Plan for Relapse: People who make changes and stick to them often slip back to old ways at least once. Plan for this. How are you going to get back to your new ways? For example, if your goal is to exercise more, plan for the time when you miss your exercise. Think of ways that one missed day doesn’t become two. Reward your success, and move on quickly from your disappointments· Specify Your Goal: People who are successful in changing an unwanted habit are able to say exactly what it is they will do. People who are vague about their goal have less chance for success. Being specific also helps you actually make a start. Set a date and time to begin your change if possible. For example, saying that you want to “eat better” is a helpful, but setting a goal of eating one fruit and one vegetable at each meal is even better. Starting tomorrow! Or, if you want to get along with your in-laws better, deciding to send them a card once a month would be a more specific step. For More Information: Acadia Hospital Website: www.acadiahospital.org American Psychological Association Web Site: www.apahelpcenter.org

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What to Say When Kids Ask About Money

Updated 1 year ago

Not that your children would ever do this, but sometimes kids ask the darnedest questions. And money and the variation between what you have and the things or houses of others, may be the focus of some of those questions. An article by Ron Lieber had a few suggested conversations. How much do you make?- Kids compare height, running speed, and all manner of things when they are together. A child may not be looking for an actual amount when they ask what you make. Maybe they are worried about paying the bills, or wondering how come some people live in a bigger house than you. With older kids you could make a sample budget in a range of expenses. Include a mortgage and explain how much one house might cost if you save for a mortgage or buy it without saving. Show another mortgage and the difference because of the location or size of the house and the benefits of that. Add electricity and food costs and talk about what kind of job or career might be coupled with that needed income without getting specific about your family or others income or education. Are we rich?- For everyone having savings means spending less than we earn. But kids probably don’t know that. Maybe you could let your children understand either what percentage of what you earn goes into savings for emergencies and retirement or get a book about storing up what you get today for tomorrow. Don’t tell them specific dollar amounts but do explain the concept of setting today’s money aside for the future and the sacrifices that entails.Doing without- Things happen and explaining the financial reversal to kids can seem complicated. Kids have no idea about money unless you tell them without telling them the real details. Kids need to know if they will eat if you lost your job. The article suggested getting older kids to help figuring out where to cut back, ask for ideas on free fun family days or stay-cations ideas. When a stranger at the grocery store asks, How are you? It’s more a question of being polite and less a deep question about everything on your mind. The questions kids ask are sort of the same. Teach them principles about money that will help them in their own lives. Don’t tell them everything that is really going on in the household checking account. Citation:http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/10/your-money/10money.htmlMarion R. Syversen, MBA – PresidentNorumbegaFinancial207.862.2952Marion@NorumbegaFinancial.com Check out our website that includes weekly streaming videosWWW.NorumbegaFinancial.com Voted Bangor’s Best Financial Planning Firm 2008, 2009 & 2010 by Market Surveys of AmericaIn compliance with requirements from FINRA, all e-mail sent via the WSFG domain will be subject to review and archiving by Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. Email management, archiving & monitoring technology powered by Smarsh, Inc. Disclosure:Only securities and advisory services offered through Wall Street Financial Group, Inc. Registered Investment Advisor. Member FINRA/SIPC. Wall Street Financial Group, Inc., Norumbega Financial and all other individuals listed below are separate entities, independently owned and operated.

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Were you prepared for the storm?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 94% (303 Votes)No 6% (21 Votes)


When do you open your presents?

Updated 4 years ago

All on Christmas Morning 63% (236 votes)All on Christmas Eve 7% (27 votes)Both 27% (103 votes)I don’t celebrate Christmas 3% (10 votes)


Did you send out cards this holiday season?

Updated 4 years ago

Yes 61% (119 votes)No 37% (76 votes)


Are you more likely to fly out of Bangor or drive to a different airport?

Updated 4 years ago

Bangor 30% (97 votes)Different Airport 51% (164 votes)I don’t fly 19% (60 votes)


Healthy Living: Bipolar Disorder or Manic Depression

Updated 4 years ago

By: Dr. David PrescottBipolar Disorder – As With Many Psychiatric Disorders, Undertreated: A recent story in Florida, concerning a man who entered a school board meeting with a gun, highlights the need to ensure that people with mental illness receive professional treatment. News reports suggest that this man had bipolar disorder, a mood disorder involving wide fluctuations in mood, energy, and activity. But, like many psychiatric disorders, only a fraction of people with bipolar disorder receive proper treatment. Consider these facts: • Just under 3% of people in the United States experience bipolar disorder in any given year. • Almost 90% of these people are estimated to experience severe symptoms or disruption in functioning. • 51% of people with bipolar disorder receive no treatment• Only 39% of people with bipolar disorder are believed to receive adequate treatment. Famous People with Bipolar Disorder: Artist Vincent Van Gogh: performers Carrie Fisher, Dick Cavett, Margot Kidder, and Patty Duke: author Viginia Woolf. All of these well known personalities have, or are thought to have had, bipolar disorder. People with bipolar disorder may experience periods of time where they are creative, driven, and highly energetic. However, in spite of such periods of productivity, the disorder typically causes significant strain on relationships, families, and careers. Characteristics of People with Bipolar Disorder: While all of us experience “ups and downs” in our mood, people with Bipolar Disorder have mood swings which are extreme. Along with Major Depression, Bipolar Disorder is a psychiatric diagnosis that carries a relatively high risk for suicide or attempted suicide. The characteristic pattern involves periods of “up” mood (mania or hypomania) and periods of “down” mood (depression). Current classification of Bipolar Disorder involves Type I (full episodes of mania and depression), Type II (mild episodes of mania and full episodes of depression) and rapid cycling (mood fluctuations occur in time period of a day or even several hours, rather than weeks). Signs and symptoms of Mania (lasts one week or more): • Excessive energy, activity, or restlessness• Excessive “high” or good mood• Rapid and pressured speech• Significant decreased sleep• Irritability• Poor judgment• Denial that anything is wrong Signs and symptoms of Depression• Decreased energy or activity level• Sad or depressed mood• Preoccupation with death or suicide• Lack of interest in activities• Excessive sleep or difficulty falling asleep• Change in appetite (usually diminished)Can Children or Adolescents have Bipolar Disorder? Like many psychological disorders, bipolar disorder is more difficult to identify in children and adolescents. Some experts argue that the disorder does not truly exist in children, while others argue that it is under-identified and treated. Especially with bipolar disorder, a thorough assessment by a licensed mental health provider, like a psychologist or psychiatrist, is a good first step. How is Bipolar Disorder Treated? Author Kay Redfield Jamison, a physician who writes about her own experience with bipolar disorder, talks about the importance of combining medicine with counseling to address bipolar disorder. Treatments for Bipolar Disorder Include: * Medicines such as lithium have proven highly effective in controlling mood swings. Newer medicines, like Depakote or atypical antipsychotic medications may also help some people with bipolar disorder. * Behavioral Treatment to Help Keep Daily Activity and Sleep Routines Consistent: While behavioral treatments do not make bipolar disorder go away, the impact of bipolar disorder can be greatly reduced by helping people maintain consistency in their daily routines (for example, meal times, physical activity) and sleep. * Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and Education: Recognizing early signs of an extreme mood swing is important in treating bipolar disorder. Counseling can help people with bipolar disorder identify early signs of mood swings, help people adjust to a less energized lifestyle, and help them avoid patterns of thinking which lead to more severe depression or mania. For More Information: National Institute of Mental Health: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publicationsAmerican Psychological Association: http://www.apa.org/topics/bipolarNational Alliance of Mental Illness: http://www.nami.org

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