Which Is a Better Choice: Hot Dog or Hamburger?

It is that time of year in Southern Oregon when people are uncovering the barbeques and thinking about dinner outside with your feet in the grass.  Hot dogs and hamburgers are top picks for American grills, but have you ever wondered from a nutritional standpoint which is better for you?  NBC uncovers some facts you likely haven’t considered and will find very interesting.  They give you a rundown of hamburger and hot dog nutrition facts, both naked and with all the accoutrements.  The worrisome part of hot dogs is the nitrates they contain, which are known carcinogens.  On the other hand, hamburgers are made with red meat and that has been found as a probable carcinogen.  In the end, both can be considered winners.  From a caloric standpoint, the hot dog is the winner.  See the article for a breakdown of the numbers.  Hamburgers come in first from an overall perspective, having more protein (about six times more than a hot dog) and thus helping you feel fuller longer.

Which is healthier: A hot dog or hamburger? (nbcnews.com)

Vegetable Planting Time!

It is getting sunnier and warmer here in Southern Oregon.  Nurseries and even grocery stores are putting out racks of plants, tempting passersby to start on those summer gardens.  The National Gardening Association has a website, garden.org.  On this website, they have a Medford/Southern Oregon-specific guide to tell you when you should plant which types of vegetables, both by seed and seedling.  This helpful article tries to set you up for success, telling you why it might be best to start your seeds indoors first (and you’re too late to start by seed indoors in late April), how you need to know your soil temperature, when to plant direct seed or seedlings, and lays out strategies to set you up for bountiful success.  Save yourself some money, time and frustration by knowing the optimal times to plant.  Read more here:
When to Plant Vegetables in Medford, OR – Garden.org

Happy Earth Day Southern Oregon!

There are a few activities out and about in Southern Oregon to celebrate Earth Day 2022, but there are plenty of things you can do in and around your home to help our environment.  Earthday.org has a plethora of information to help you.  Read an article about avoiding the use of plastic, take an ocean plastic pollution quiz, find tips on growing an organic garden, or get encouragement over the efforts you’re already making.  An easy first step is to reduce the millions of plastic water bottles used every day by purchasing a reusable water bottle.  Did you know the average American buys an average of 167 disposable water bottles every year?  That adds up to about $266!  Reusable choices come in glass, BPA-free plastic, and stainless steel, and are readily found in grocery stores, sporting goods stores, or your even local coffee shops.  Paragon Orthopedic Center was giving out reusable water bottles before the pandemic hit.  Find all of this information and more here:

Earth Day Tips | Earth Day Network

What Makes a City Livable?

Visitors to Southern Oregon fall in love with our area very quickly and many these days want to become a part of our cities, but what is it about a city that makes it attractive?  Maybe you’re looking to move to another city: what makes you choose one over another?  An article by the World Economic Forum finds the bottom line:  its people must feel safe, and it must promote the health, well-being, and equity of all ages.  There are many details to this, and people have different priorities of those details, depending on their phase of life and health.  This article has a graphic that breaks down how the ingredients of a livable city vary by ages/phases:

These factors are what makes a city ‘liveable’ | World Economic Forum (weforum.org)

Get Your Spouse Healthier. And Don’t Nag.

The Wall Street Journal has an article today that addresses what can be a sticky issue between couples: trying to change the unhealthy habits of one spouse that have led to poorer health of that spouse.  When you see your spouse unwilling to address the issues, how can you give them support?  Nagging comes naturally to us, but at the root of that nagging is fear; likely fear over loss of the spouse, or the lifestyle you want, or the future you envisioned.  Here are the tips in a nutshell:

  • Express your fears and empathize.  Come from a place of love, not criticism.
  • Consider options that meet your partner’s desires and definition of fun, possibly hobbies given up years ago.  Getting out of the house is better than sitting in front of the television any day, even if that’s just playing Bingo.  And remember that you might have to be a part of something new to come alongside in the effort.
  • Be a positive reinforcement!  Say or do something positive when you see your partner making efforts: a kiss, a shout of joy, or words of affirmation.  A hug can go a long way!
  • Have your healthcare professional deliver the news that is hard to hear.  Avoid being the bad guy.
  • Know that you might make sacrifices too, such as diet changes.  Misery loves company, so get down in the trenches with your partner on the road to better health.

Are you the partner who needs to make these changes?  Try to figure out why you resist changing.  Being honest with your partner about this will not only open the dialog but will draw you closer as you unify in an effort to live the best lives you want, together.

How to Get Your Spouse to Eat, Exercise and Live More Healthfully – WSJ

How to Increase Your Pain Tolerance

Our monthly newsletter focused on alternatives to prescription medications for pain control, so on the heels of that, today we are talking about increasing your pain tolerance.  Did you know this was possible?  An article from Healthline.com discusses what pain tolerance is, why some people experience pain more than others, how to test your level of pain tolerance, and features five ways to try to increase yours.  You can’t always change the source of your pain, but you can alter how you perceive it.  Check it out:

High Pain Tolerance: How to Measure and Increase Your Pain Tolerance (healthline.com)

Managing Your Pain Without Narcotics

Our monthly Paragon Press newsletter has just been released!  We are talking about alternative ways to control pain.  Some patients, for a variety of reasons, do not want to take opioids or prescription medicines to control pain.  Dr. Bents and Dr. Van Horne take pain control very seriously because controlling your pain directly relates to how you heal from your surgery.  You will not do a good job in therapy to rehabilitate after surgery if you are immobilized by pain.  There are options available to you, and while we don’t have the space to do a deep dive on all of them, we have information in the newsletter for you to do some further investigation.

Paragon Press, April 2022

Healing Wounds Faster

Whether it is a small cut or something larger, wounds are uncomfortable and cannot be ignored.  Here we will present some treatments for minor wounds that you can find fairly easily to possibly cut down on the healing time.  Medical News Today offers six that are easily found in most grocery stores:

  • antibacterial ointment
  • aloe vera
  • honey
  • coconut oil
  • garlic–it has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties!
  • turmeric paste

The article goes over the healing properties of each, how to use these suggestions, and reviews the research.  The CDC recommends checking your wound at least every 24 hours to monitor for infection and clean up the wound when needed.  Also note that some wounds cannot be treated at home and need professional care, such as large wounds needing stitches, infected wounds, or wounds that won’t stop bleeding.  When in doubt, contact your healthcare provider.

How to make a wound heal faster: 6 tips (medicalnewstoday.com)

Making Your Passwords Less Vulnerable to Hackers

Websites will remind you to change your passwords, but most of us ignore it, or rotate a few easy to remember words that can be recalled every time we need to change one.  We have an article that helps you choose smart passwords and gives you tips to stay safe from hackers.  Did you know Microsoft had to ban the use of the word “password” because so many people were using it and it was too easily hacked?  Remember that hackers are looking for low hanging fruit, so if you create a very secure password in the first place, you are a lot less likely to be hacked when there are people out there using “password,” their children’s names, or their birthdate.  (Personal information that can easily be obtained should not be used for passwords.)  Quick tips: keep it long, don’t reuse between sites, and pay attention to what is known about securing passwords.  We all know about the Nigerian Prince scam or bogus sweepstakes, but the hackers are always scheming, and you need to keep up with what is known about their most recent hacking techniques.  No April Fool’s about this threat.  Read on and educate yourself here:

How to Create a Secure Password. A Simple Guide (vpnoverview.com)