5.16.2010

PIA News Service - Monday, May 17, 2010

Feature: Growing older but getting healthier
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As people grow old, they start to feel body aches and pains. The ageing body undergoes physiological, psychological, and economic changes. Tiring bones and muscles have given way to fat because of the inactive hormones. All these changes contribute to poor nutrition among elderly persons.
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The key to health is balanced diet. Like everyone else, older people need a balanced diet to preserve good health and maintain quality of life. The following nutrients will be of great help as one grows older:
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Water
Older person often suffer from dehydration. This is because the body's water content decreases as one grows older. Older persons should remember to regularly drink at least an ounce of water for every kilo of body weight. For quick reference, follow the Daily Nutritional Guide Pyramid’s recommendation of eight glasses a day.
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Protein
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Protein is essential as a person ages. Protein is needed to maintain a healthy immune system and to prevent muscle wasting. At the same time, they do not need that much of energy. Foods such as egg whites, chicken without skin, lean meat, and fish, which are low-fat sources of proteins, are very much essential for the older persons.
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Carbohydrates and Fiber
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Carbohydrates provide energy for the entire body. Carbohydrate-rich foods are bread, pasta, cereals, among others. Older persons usually suffer from constipation. Prevent constipation by taking a diet that is rich in water and fiber.
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Fat
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The diet of older people should be low in fat but not fat-free. Limit fat intake by using only lean meats and low-fat dairy products. Limit frying as a means of cooking the food. 
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Iron
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Iron helps build and maintain blood supply. It gives the healthy red color to the blood. Iron deficiency is common among older people who do not eat much. Such people should eat plenty of green leafy vegetables, breakfast cereals or red meat.
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Zinc
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Elderly bodies find it difficult to assimilate zinc. Zinc helps the body use protein and carbohydrates. It also helps hasten wound healing. Take fish, poultry, and meat in order to satisfy the zinc requirements of your body.
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Calcium
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When people age, they hardly get enough of calcium. The elderly require at least 800 milligrams (mg) of calcium per day according to the recommended energy and nutrient intakes (RENI) for Filipinos. Many of the older persons avoid drinking milk out of fear that it might upset their digestive processes. If a person is averse to milk, one could use non-fat milk powder instead of milk. Calcium can also be obtained from foods such as low-fat cheese, dried fish especially if eaten with bones (dilis, bia, tabios, ayungin) malunggay,saluyot, kintsay, mustasa, kalabasa.
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Vitamin B12
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Cobalamin or vitamin B12 facilitates maturation of red blood cells. It also protects the “myelin,” the fatty material that covers the nerves and enables one to transmit electrical impulses (messages) between nerve cells. Vitamin B12 is usually absorbed by an intrinsic factor in the stomach. Many of the elderly suffer from vitamin B12 deficiency because they suffer from atrophic gastritis, a medical condition characterized by inflammation of the walls of the stomach, growth of bacteria, and lack of the intrinsic factor that is responsible for the absorption of this vitamin into the system.
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The elderly need each of these nutrients to keep themselves healthy. The elderly should be as active as possible and maintain a balanced diet. Following the FNRI’s Daily Nutrition Guide Pyramid for Older Persons can serve as a reference.
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Growing older does not mean one have a reason to neglect the body. An elderly should always eat well and follow good nutrition practices to enjoy a long and healthy life.
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For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, Gen. Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Trunkline: 837-2071 local 2296 or 2287; Telephone/Fax No.: 837-3164; e-mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or mar_v_c@yahoo.com; Website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (Victor J. Alfonso Jr., FNRI-DOST S&T Media Service)
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Maximizing post-menopausal health: Opportunities for nutrition intervention
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Among older persons, there are a number of nutrition-related health problems that are particularly pertinent to women, namely, osteoporosis, cardiovascular diseases, cancer and weight problems. Most of these problems are largely due to a reduced secretion of estrogen which occurs at menopause.
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Health issues for women after menopause
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Osteoporosis
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Osteoporosis is characterized by a low bone mass and increased fragility of bones, making them more susceptible to fracture. Bone loss occurs with aging, but it occurs earlier in women than in men. Accelerated bone loss occurs at menopause as a result of low estrogen levels.
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Nutritional Factors Affecting Bone Strength
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One of the most significant nutritional factors affecting bone strength is calcium status. The rate of bone loss can be reduced in post-menopausal women by ensuring an optimal calcium intake throughout the life stages.  
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Other key nutrients essential for bone health include vitamin D, vitamin C, phosphorus, magnesium and zinc. Vitamins C and D facilitate the absorption and utilization of calcium.  
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Studies revealed that the ability of the skin to synthesize vitamin D when exposed to sunlight dramatically decreases with age. Furthermore, elderly women who are homebound may have less opportunity for exposure to sunlight.  
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As components of bone, phosphorus and magnesium stabilize bone structure and improve bone strength. A varied diet usually meets the recommended intakes of these minerals. 
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Many elderly persons are reported to have marginal zinc stores. This can be a result of decreased meat intakes, medical conditions that impair zinc status, or the use of drugs that either reduce zinc absorption or increase zinc excretion.  
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Supplements to improve zinc status should, however, be used with caution because excessive zinc intake can cause gastrointestinal irritation, copper deficiency, anemia, hypercholesterolemia and impaired immune functions.
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Weight-bearing exercise has a significant effect on bone strength, but sufficient calcium must be consumed to optimize the benefits of exercise on bone. 
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Cancer  
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Breast cancer is the most common and risk increases with early menarche and late menopause. In the Philippines, breast cancer is the leading type of cancer among Filipino women according to the Department of Health’s (DOH) latest data. It has been reported that postmenopausal women aged 55 years and over have a 66% incidence of breast cancer mortality.
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There is evidence that diet may play a role in some types of cancer, in particular, the high-fat intake and breast cancer. The role of other dietary factors is unclear. What is known though is that obesity increases risk of post-menopausal breast cancer, and for obese women, weight loss can reduce cancer risk.  
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The increased consumption of fruits and vegetables is also thought to be protective against breast cancer.
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Cardiovascular Disease  
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Modifiable coronary heart disease (CHD) Risk Factors in Women
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Modifiable CHD risk factors are important target for intervention in post-menopausal women. Modifiable risk factors include smoking, hypertension, obesity, physical inactivity and diabetes.
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Although each factor may affect CHD risk independently, controlling non-lipid risk factors like weight, blood pressure, and lifestyle factors can also control hyperlipidemia.  
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Reducing obesity and increasing physical activity can control hypertension and diabetes in addition to improving lipid profile. Smoking cessation not only removes the strongest independent modifiable risk factor for CHD but also affects lipid profile favorably.
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Hyperlipidemia Management in Women
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For primary prevention, the initial or routine screening should include assessment of total cholesterol and high density lipoprotein (HDL) levels to determine the client’s lipid risk status.  
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A routine visit should also include assessment of the client’s dietary habits and other risk factors for CHD, such as family history, smoking, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and physical inactivity.
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For patients who have desirable total cholesterol levels at less than 200 milligrams per deciliter (200 mg/dL) and HDL levels that do not signal increased risk at equal to or more than 35 milligrams per deciliter (35 mg/dL), no additional testing is needed and follow-up cholesterol screening can be deferred for up to five years.
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Nevertheless, clients who have desirable total cholesterol and HDL levels and are not overweight should be advised about diet and physical activity. In addition, all patients should be encouraged to be physically active.  
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The current recommendation is to accumulate at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity on most or preferably all days of the week.
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Even when cholesterol levels are desirable, women who have modifiable CHD risk factors, such as smoking, obesity, and hypertension, should be counseled on risk reduction. Those who have diabetes should be referred to specialty care for lipid management.
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Appropriate management for patients with undesirable total cholesterol or HDL levels depends on a combination of their levels and CHD risks. Determining a patient’s risk level on this basis is termed risk stratification.  
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Overweight and Obesity 
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Menopause is often believed to cause weight gain, although there is little sound evidence to describe it as a particular risk period. Menopause is, however, associated with a change in the distribution of fat, with more fat deposited around the abdominal area. Excess abdominal weight is associated with an increased risk of CHD.
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Obese women should be strongly encouraged to lose weight. A 10 kilogram (kg) weight loss can lead to a fall in systolic blood pressure of 10 millimeter mercury (mmHg) and a fall in diastolic blood pressure of 20 mmHg. It can also reduce total cholesterol levels by 10%, and reduce obesity-related cancer deaths by 40%.
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Excess weight also puts additional strain to already fragile bones of some menopausal women. With so much weight to carry, obese women may have difficulty moving around, making them more prone to accidents.
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Long-term weight loss and weight-maintenance strategies need to be implemented with dietary management, behavior modification and an increase in physical activity.  
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A healthy diet for post-menopausal women
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The combination of dietary changes, increased physical activity and weight loss work together to promote overall health and well-being of post-menopausal women and reduce their risks of osteoporosis, cancer, cardiovascular disease and weight problems.
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The general characteristics of a healthy diet for menopausal women are the same as those for all adults.
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Specific instruction may be given for the following:
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1. Calorie intake: An appropriate energy intake for an individual is the amount of calories that will achieve or maintain a desirable body weight. Particularly for an overweight or obese woman, it is desirable to assess current calorie intake and recommend a reduction in calorie intake accordingly.

2. Fat intake: The recommended fat intake for Filipinos is 20-30% of calorie intake. This conforms to the recommendation of the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP).

3. Calcium intake: An adequate calcium intake is not only protective against osteoporosis, but also promotes cardiovascular health.

For bone health in older individuals, an adequate calcium intake throughout the lifestages is important, and calcium supplementation at menopause has little effect on bone mineral density.  
Thus, the US Food and Nutrition Board (1998) recommends the same calcium intake of 1000 milligrams per day (mg/d) for all adults, including post-menopausal women. The recommendation for Filipinos has been increased from 500 mg/d to 800 mg/day.

Excellent sources of calcium are milk and calcium-fortified juices. Good sources include seafoods and green leafy vegetables.
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4. Fruits and vegetables: The NCEP panel pointed to epidemiologic evidence that a diet emphasizing fruits, vegetables, grains and fish affords protection against CHD. Not only do these foods tend to be low in fat, cholesterol, and calories, they also supply substances, such as antioxidants, fiber and carotenoids which are protective against CHD, cancer, and other degenerative diseases.
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For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, FNRI Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Telephone/Fax Nos.: 837-2934, 837-3164; e-mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or at mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (Celeste C. Tanchoco, Dr.P.H., Scientist III & Chief Science Research Specialist, FNRI-DOST S& T Media Service) 
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Tagalog News: Lathalain: FOOD SAFETY, mahalaga ngayong Summer 
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Nagpaplano ba kayong mag outing o magkaroon ng family gatherings ngayong summer? 
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Kung outing ang pag-uusapan, ang laging nasa isip natin ay swimming at masasarap na pagkain na nababagay dito. Wala na ngang sasaya pa sa paglalangoy sa beach o sa pool at ang pagkain ng mga summer foods. 
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Ngunit huwag natin kalimutan ang food safety o kaligtasan ng pagkain sa panahon ng tag-init o summer. Ang pagkain ay dapat laging malinis, mula sa paghahanda hanggang sa pagkonsumo. Mas lalong dapat maging maingat kapag magluluto ng pagkain sa labas o outdoors.

Narito ang ilang paalaala tungkol sa ligtas at malinis na paghahanda ng pagkain ngayong summer:
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• Panatilihing malamig ang mga pagkaing tinuturing na cold foods. Gumamit ng coolers at lagyan ng maraming yelo. Ilagay ang coolers sa lugar na di naiinitan. Dagdagan pa ng yelo kung tunaw na ang yelo sa coolers. Ang pinakamainam upang mapanatiling malamig ang pagkain tulad ng tinamplahang karne, manok at isda ay iimbak muna sa freezer para maging frozen bago ilagay sa coolers. 
• Unahing kainin ang mga pagkaing madaling masira at ihuli ang mga pagkaing di madaling masira.
• Baunin sa picnic o sa outing ang mga pagkaing di madaling masira tulad ng adobong baboy o manok, inihaw na baboy o isda, sariwang prutas at gulay.
• Hugasang mabuti ang prutas at gulay bago i-empake.
• Kung mag-iihaw, panatilihin muna ang pagkaing iihawin sa loob ng coolers at ilabas lang kung kalian iihawin na ang mga ito.
• Kung maghahanda ng pagkain, panatilihing malinis ang lahat ng kagamitan. Maghugas ng kamay bago hawakan ang pagkain.
• Ilagay sa malinis na lalagyan ang inihaw na pagkain. Huwag gumamit ng parehong pinggan para sa hilaw at lutong pagkain.
• Uminom ng malinis na tubig o magdala ng bottled water.
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Ayon sa ika-siyam na mensahe ng Gabay sa Wastong Nutrisyon para sa Pilipino, kumain ng malinis at ligtas na pagkain lamang upang maiwasan ang sakit na sanhi ng maruming pagkain at tubig. 
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Para sa karagdagang impormasyon tungkol sa pagkain at nutrisyon, makipag-ugnayan kay Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute-DOST, Bicutan, Taguig, Metro Manila, Tel. No. 837-29-34 or 837-20-71 loc. 2287, FNRI-DOST, email: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph; website:http//www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (Ma. Idelia G. Glorioso, FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service)
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Feature: Pregnant strongly advised: increase folate intake 
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Jake and Sylvia is a young couple from a depressed area and from poor families who thrive on “hand-to-mouth existence”. Amidst poverty, the two fell in love and vowed to stay together to raise a family.  
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After six months of being together, Sylvia experienced morning sickness and a visit to a nearby health center confirmed her condition. She is six weeks on the family way. Sylvia eagerly told Jake the good news and both excitedly waited for the coming of their new bundle of joy.  
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In less than eight months of pregnancy, however, Sylvia experienced contractions and was rushed to the hospital. Sylvia was brought to the operating room and gave birth to a baby boy. The baby, however, was unusually small, weak and pale. The couple’s happiness was short-lived, for the baby was diagnosed of anencephaly and died a few hours later.
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What is anencephaly and how can it be prevented?  
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Anencephaly is a kind of neural tube defect, often associated with inadequate folate intake and characterized by undeveloped brain. Babies with anencepahly are most likely to be stillborn and may die a few hours after birth.  
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What exactly is folate and what is its importance?  
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Folate is a water- soluble B-vitamin that occurs naturally in food. Folate came from the Latin word “folium” which means leaf. It is one of the nutrients that prevent neural tube defects during pregnancy.  
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Adequate folate intake during pregnancy protects the unborn child from neural tube defects. Neural tube defects result in malformations of the spine or spina bifida, skull, and brain mentioned before as anencephaly.
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Folate can be derived from green leafy vegetables, fruits like citrus and fruit juices, dried beans and peas. Whole grain and liver are likewise good sources of folate.
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It is a sad reality, however, that despite the relative accessibility of local vegetables to Filipinos, many pregnant women have high percentages of sub-normal values of serum folate (51.7 percent) and red cells (37.5 percent). These figures indicate an alarmingly high prevalence of folate deficiency, as shown by the 2003 National Nutrition Survey (NNS) conducted by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FNRI-DOST).  
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The typical Filipino diet still lacks the needed nutrients for good health, more, especially for pregnant women who are carrying the seeds for a brighter future.
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For pregnant and pregnant wanna-be’s, mag-folate na! Give your babies a headstart in this competitive but wonderful world we live in. Folate for healthier babies and brighter future! 
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For more information on food and nutrition, contact: Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Director, Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology, General Santos Avenue, Bicutan, Taguig City; Telephone/ Fax Nos: 837-2934 or 837-3164; Direct Line:839-1839; DOST Trunk Line: 837-2071-82 local 2296 or 2284; e-mail: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph or at mar_v_c@yahoo.com; FNRI-DOST website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (Ma. Susana O. Encarnacion, FNRI-DOST S&T Media Service) 
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Tagalog News: Sukat ng baywang, nakakaapekto sa kalusugan

Alam ba ninyo na bukod sa hindi kaaya-ayang tingnan ang malaking tiyan o bilbil ay may malaking epekto ito sa ating kalusugan?
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Maaaring maging isang indikasyon ng posibilidad na magkaroon ng sakit sa puso o diyabetis ang pagkakaroon ng higit sa normal na sukat ng baywang at balakang. 
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Dahil dito, inirerekomenda ng mga eksperto ang pagsukat ng baywang at balakang upang malaman kung ang isang tao ay sobra ang taba sa parte ng tiyan o android o apple-shaped obese.
Ang pagkakaroon ng sobrang taba, lalung-lalo na sa parte ng tiyan, ay nagdudulot ng mataas na lebel ng asukal, insulin, kolesterol at triglyceride sa dugo na siyang nagiging sanhi ng diyabetis, alta-presyon, atake sa puso o iba pang sakit.
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Ayon sa Interheart Study, isang pag-aaral na nakatuon sa cardiovascular diseases sa iba’t-ibang bansa sa buong mundo kabilang ang Pilipinas, inirerekomenda na ang sukat ng baywang ay hindi dapat lalampas sa 80 sentimetro o 31 pulgada para sa mga babae at 90 sentimetro o 35 pulgada para sa mga lalake.
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Kung kaya’t dapat pag-ingatan ang ating katawan para na rin sa kalusugan. Healthy na, sexy pa.
Ang impormasyong ito ay hatid sa inyo ng Food and Nutrition Research Institute ng Department of Science and Technology o FNRI-DOST, ang pangunahing ahensiya ng gobyerno sa pananaliksik sa pagkain at nutrisyon. Para sa karagdagang impormasyon at kaalaman sa pagkain at nutrisyon, sumulat o tumawag kay Dr. Mario V. Capanzana, Direktor, FNRI-DOST sa kanyang email address: mvc@fnri.dost.gov.ph o mar_v_c@yahoo.com o sa telepono bilang 837-2934/837-3164. Maaari ding bisitahin ang FNRI website: http://www.fnri.dost.gov.ph. (Charina A. Javier, FNRI-DOST S & T Media Service)
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NFA open rice sales 
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Regional Director Gil Pepito B. Paqueo recently announced to all interested grains businessmen/millers/wholesalers/retailers/establishments that NFA will be accepting buyers for the sale of imported rice (VCCW91) 15% brokens at Php 1,175.00 per bag. Rice stocks are presently stored at NFA warehouses throughout the region.

RD Paqueo stressed that buyers should be licensed as retailer/wholesaler by NFA. Maximum quantity of five thousand (5,000) bags per purchase per buyer based on capitalization is allowed by the management.

He then urged the public to send their comments, suggestions, queries and complaints in case of rice diversion, rebagging and overpricing to NFA office at (085) 342-7898. 

The NFA’s rice inventory as of the first week of May was 974,790 bags. This was more than enough to meet region’s rice requirement for 31 days, based on the region’s daily requirement of 22,800 bags. (Christine S. Parinas, NFA/PIA-Caraga).