The following is an excerpt from MdMD for Life 2011, available now.
For 50-year-old Patricia Smith*, nothing beats a bowl of Cocoa Krispies or a stack of Oreos, paired with a tall glass of whole milk. These days, however, you’re more likely to find her eating Cheerios with soy milk or munching on an apple when cookie cravings strike. She attributes her healthier habits to news she received while attending a low-cost health screening last year at Baltimore’s Woodlawn Senior Center.
“Hypertension and diabetes run in my family, so I figured it was a good idea to go and get checked out,” Patricia recalls. She was working full-time, but did not have health insurance at the time, and hadn’t seen a physician in several years. At the screening, part of LifeBridge Health’s Know Your Health program, a nurse checked her height, weight and blood pressure; calculated her body mass index (BMI) and took a blood sample to measure Patricia's total cholesterol, triglyceride and fasting glucose levels.
Results showed that she was overweight and that her blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar readings were slightly high, suggesting she was on the verge of a battle with the same health problems as her parents.
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