Child Heatstroke: Keeping Your Kids Safe from Heat Injuries in Cars (Infographic)

Our little ones mean a lot to us and it’s tough to imagine forgetting them anywhere – but it happens. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the majority of child related hot car incidents happen because someone forgets a child in a car. Keep your children safe by:

  • Never leaving your child in a car, no matter what the weather is.
  • Teaching your children that cars are not play areas.
  • Placing a child’s item on the front seat and a personal item in the back seat.

When traveling with a child or infant, practice looking inside your car before locking it. Remember: Park. Look. Lock.

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Crispy Air Fryer Tofu Nuggets

Crispy Air Fryer Tofu Nuggets

Author: Kim Friendly, Simply Plant Based Kitchen
This crispy and delicious recipe will make these tofu nuggets a regular part of your meal rotation.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish
Servings 4
Calories 75 kcal

Equipment

  • Air Fryer

Ingredients
  

  • 14 ounces extra firm tofu drained & pressed for at least 30 minutes
  • 1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce or coconut aminos for gluten & soy free
  • 1 tablespoon low sodium vegetable broth or water
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt optional
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch or arrowroot powder

Instructions
 

  • After you've drained & pressed your tofu, place on a cutting board & slice into 1" cubes.
  • Mix low sodium soy sauce & vegetable broth together in a small bowl.
  • In a separate small bowl, add all the dry ingredients & mix together (garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, nutritional yeast, black pepper, salt, & cornstarch).
  • Place cubes in a medium sized bowl & toss with the soy sauce mixture (or you can put in a ziplock bag to marinate for 30 minutes in the fridge for more flavor).
  • Coat the tofu with the dry spices and toss well. It's ok if you have broken pieces – they'll end up super crispy & tasty!
  • Place cubes in the basket of your air fryer (no need to spray with oil) in a single layer and leave a little space around each piece. (you may have to do separate batches depending on the size of your air fryer)
  • Set your air fryer to 400°. Cook for 5 minutes, then use a spatula to flip them/shake basket and repeat 2-3 more times until desired crispness. 10-15 minutes total.
  • Remove tofu & allow to cool for a few minutes before serving. Enjoy as a snack, salad topper, or main dish! Serve plain or with sauce of choice. Great to dip in BBQ sauce!

Notes

Baking Instructions (if you don’t have an Air Fryer):
Preheat oven to 375°F.  Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.  Spread cubes out in one layer on the baking sheet, with space between each piece.  Bake for 45 minutes, flipping every 15 minutes or until desired crispness.
Keyword air fryer, oil-free, plant-based, tofu, vegan

Reference: Crispy Air Fryer Tofu Nuggets (Vegan & Oil Free) recipe by Kim Friendly, Simply Plant-Based Kitchen

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Air Fryers: Are they for you?

These days, air fryers are all the rage. Air fryers are constantly popping up on social media, and everyone seems to be jumping on the bandwagon. But are they truly healthy? Sophia Speroff, MPH, RD, Community Dietitian, Chelsea Hospital has the answer.

Air Frying vs. Traditional Frying

Using an air fryer is healthier than traditional frying. Air fryers use hot-air technology to cook food. Newer ovens that have a convection setting use a similar process: Fans blow hot air around the food. Air fryers produce a crispy exterior to the food, with little or no oil, making this frying method healthier than traditional frying.

If you use a deep fryer or pan to fry foods, you are bathing those foods in hot oil. Deep-fried foods are more flavorful, but they have more calories.

A Brief Word about Fats

Some fats are essential to give your body energy and support cell function. They help keep your body warm and produce important hormones. Fats also provide nutrients and protect your organs.

There are two major categories of fats: saturated (unhealthy) and unsaturated (healthy). Dieticians recommend getting 10 percent or less of your daily calories from saturated fats.

Why is frying unhealthy?

Fats are more energy-dense than carbohydrates and proteins. If you consume a lot of fat calories, you can gain weight and potentially become overweight — which can lead to heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.

Foods that people deep fry absorb the saturated fats that are used when frying, making frying problematic for a person trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

In the process of heating oil to a very high temperature when frying and grilling, carcinogens can result, which are then consumed with the fried foods. Do not eat any foods that blacken while frying or grilling. Chemicals that are thought to be probable human carcinogens are produced when food is blackened.

Features to Look for in an Air Fryer

If you still love and crave fried foods, there are ways to make it a little better for you – both for your health and your wallet. Consider how often you will use this countertop appliance, which is not limited to frying foods. For example, you can make hard-boiled eggs, bake salmon and other meats, prepare desserts, and reheat leftovers.

  • Consider the price of an air fryer before purchase. Prices can vary significantly.
  • If you have an instant pot, there is an accessory you can buy that air fries, so you wouldn’t have to purchase another kitchen appliance.
  • Review sites of air fryers say that consumers should consider the wattage needed.
  • If an air fryer has pre-settings and you plan to use the air fryer frequently, you may prefer a model with more settings.
  • Dishwasher-safe baskets are great for easy clean up.

Alternatives to Frying

There are several healthier alternatives to frying your foods.

  1. Sautéing: Preparing foods this way is significantly healthier than deep fat frying. Sautéing uses a very small amount of oil.
  2. Steaming and Boiling: Heating liquids to cook foods does not require the use of oils. From a nutrient standpoint, it better to steam than to boil.
  3. Roasting and Baking: Both methods of cooking are a great alternative, especially if you add seasonings to the foods you are making. If you are roasting a fatty food, such as beef, be sure to provide a way to catch the drippings so the food isn’t sitting in its own fat.
  4. Broiling: This method browns and crisps food at a high temperature for a short period of time. It is often used for a finishing or beginning touch, while the food is cooked at a lower temperature for a longer period of time. Be aware that you can char food if you over broil, which then produces carcinogens.

Your takeaway? Using an air fryer is a healthier way to produce fried foods, but overall, it is healthier not to fry any foods.

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We offer more ways to care for you, your family and our community. Whether you need routine care or treatment for an injury or chronic condition, our providers are here for you.

5 Safety Tips for Summer Camping

The great state of Michigan is full of natural wonders to explore. Whether you are backpacking along the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, car camping and dune climbing at Warren Dunes State Park, or enjoying an overnight canoe trip on the Au Sable River, here are some tips to ensure your adventures are safe and enjoyable for the whole family:

Tip 1: Know the area you are visiting and have a plan.

Before you go, take some time to learn about the area including the weather, terrain, and risks. A simple web search will help you with this. Park Rangers are also an amazing resource to tap into.

Carefully plan your adventure and notify a trusted friend of where you are going, when you expect to return, and when the friend should consider you “overdue” and make a report.

TIP 2: Protect yourself from the elements, injury & insects.

Pack shelter & clothing that are suitable for the expected weather conditions; this includes a tent/hammock with a rain fly, temperature appropriate sleeping bag, rain jacket, wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, etc. You should also pack sun block (minimum SPF 30) and insect repellant (20-30% DEET) to deter mosquitoes and ticks.

Always carry a first aid kit & a safety whistle with you. First aid kits geared toward outdoor adventures can be found at most recreation stores and are often scalable to the activity and duration. Plan to exercise and build strength and endurance before your trip to decrease injuries.

TIP 3: Give wildlife their space.

Michigan is home to bears, moose, porcupines, cougars, coyotes, and wolves. When viewing wildlife, stay back at least 25 yards for most animals and at least 100 yards for bear and wolves. If you are in bear country, carry bear spray & be a noisy hiker by talking or singing with your hiking buddy.

Making noise lets animals know you are nearby so they can move along. If you accidentally find yourself too close to an animal, know how to handle the encounter correctly. Resources for how to handle wildlife encounters can be found on the NPS.gov website.

TIP 4: Keep your food and water safe.

Always carry drinking water with you, even on short hikes. Water from lakes, rivers, or creeks must be purified before you drink it. There are many ways to purify water including boiling, tablets, squeeze filters, gravity filters, and UV light treatment. Store and prepare food AWAY from your sleeping area.

Keep your campsite clean and keep any food or scented personal care items out of your tent. When car camping, store food in your vehicle. When camping in the backcountry, hang your food approximately 15 feet high and 100 yards from your sleeping area.

TIP 5: Fire Safety

Keep fires contained in a well-established fire ring, keep a bucket of water nearby, and NEVER attempt to start a fire with gasoline. Fully extinguish your fire before going to sleep or leaving your campsite for the day. Discuss fire safety with children and set firm boundaries about running & horseplay near campfires.

Finally, whenever you are outdoors and enjoying nature, be sure to follow the 7 Leave No Trace Principles and leave nature better than you found it.

Find a Provider Near You.

We offer more ways to care for you, your family and our community. Whether you need routine care or treatment for an injury or chronic condition, our providers are here for you.

Regular Screenings Can Help Catch Skin Cancer Early

Did you know that according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services the main cause of skin cancer is being exposed to ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun?

Warm summer weather often means taking part in more outdoor activities. While it’s important to be more active, when it comes to being out in the sun, be sure to take care of your skin.

As a component of summer safety, Trinity Health would like to encourage you to care for yourself and your loved ones by reminding you of the importance of regular skin screenings.

Your primary care physician (PCP) or other health care professional might advise that you perform routine skin self-exams to check for the development of any unusual changes.

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), the best time to do this is after a shower or bath. Check your skin in a room with plenty of light and use a full-length mirror and a hand-held mirror to learn where your birthmarks, moles, and other marks are as well as their usual look and feel.

If you find anything that looks unusual, such as a sore that won’t heal, a new mole that is different from others or a change in the way one of your moles looks, it’s time to make an appointment with your doctor.

Having a PCP who can coordinate your care is vital to your good health. A PCP typically specializes in family medicine, internal medicine or general practice.

If you don’t have a PCP, finding one is easy! Just visit your insurance carrier’s website, look for the “find a doctor” area and follow the instructions.

Trinity Health is committed to providing resources that promote well-being though body, mind and spirit and is dedicated to helping you live a healthy life.

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Our high-quality primary care doctors are ready to care for you. Schedule an appointment with one today.

From Couch to 5K for Seniors

Spring is here, and good weather is a time to think about recommitting to fitness, especially at community events.

Now would be a good time to start training to participate in a community walk, which is a great way for people to get moving, whether they are new to walking for exercise or trying to get back on the exercise bandwagon.

Getting on the exercise bandwagon, and then staying on it, can be a constant work in progress. That is why when patients mention their difficulties with exercise, we can say with assurance that “The struggle is real!”

There is good news, though. Research shows that for older adults, exercise is better than no exercise. Even one minute of exercise can help improve mobility and physical function. The bottom line is this: It is never too late to start exercising, and you can begin with small steps!

Using a “Couch to 5K” program or another beginner walking program is helpful in providing guidance and takes the guesswork out of “how to go about it.” Try this Walk/Run Plan tailored for beginners to get started.

Tips Before Starting an Exercise Regimen

  • After finding a program to get you started, talk to your doctor or physical therapist about the safety of the program before you begin.
  • Spend time looking for footwear with proper cushioning, comfort, and stability. The fit should be a thumb’s-width of space between the end of your longest toe and the end of your shoe. Your heel shouldn’t slip when you walk or jog, and your foot shouldn’t be spilling over the edges of the shoe. If your shoes are not comfortable when you first try them on, they won’t be comfortable when walking or jogging.
  • If you need to use an assistive device for balance or safety, such as a cane or walker, use it! Your safety is most important, and those devices will help you keep your independence.
  • Slow down the program if you find it is too much for you. It is okay to spend 12 weeks completing a 6-week program.
  • Make a public commit to complete the program. Making yourself accountable to someone, whether on social media or to a fitness buddy, can make it easier to keep going, even when you don’t want to.
  • Consider listening to music, nature sounds, a podcast or audiobook to accompany you while you train.
  • Don’t forget to stretch after warming up and definitely after finishing your workout.

And finally, feel proud of yourself for every minute that you exercise because you are one step closer to better health.

Improve Your Sleep in 3 Simple Steps

Getting a good night’s sleep is one of the most important things we can do for our overall health and well-being. Sleep deprivation leaves the brain exhausted, causes sluggishness, low attention span,

decreased sociability, depressed mood, insulin resistance and decreased performance. Chronic sleep deprivation is strongly correlated with behavioral health issues, such as depression, anxiety and substance use, as well as a weakened immune system.

The body profoundly needs sleep, and when a person is not getting enough quality sleep it impacts all systems of the body. A lot of people view sleep as a passive activity, but to set ourselves up for a restorative night of sleep takes preparation. Here are a few simple steps to take during the day to help set the stage for better sleep:

Preparation: Sleep is not passive; it requires a proactive routine.

  • Get regular physical activity in the morning or afternoon: Exercise promotes quality sleep. Exercise in morning makes it easier to fall asleep/wake up. Exercise in evening is ok if done on a regular basis and not immediately before bed.
  • Outdoor light exposure: Early morning light is best way to keep circadian rhythm synchronized.
  • Control caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol consumption: Minimize caffeine later in the day as it can prevent you from falling asleep. Limit alcohol consumption to 2 drinks/day for men and 1 for women and not after 3 hours before bed. Alcohol can cause you to wake up in the night and it causes sleep to be fragmented. Nicotine is a stimulant that is best avoided entirely.
  • No bright/blue light 2 hours before bed: Blue light can decrease melatonin production and increase cortisol. You can purchase special light bulbs or install an app/filter on your phone to reduce blue light exposure. Of note, phones/computers/TV, etc. are stimulating even if they do not emit blue light.

Environment: Craft your surroundings to support optimal sleep.

  • Use the bedroom for sleep and intimacy only: No TV, laptop, tablet, etc. in bedroom. Recommended no pets or children in bed.
  • Turn thermostat down: Ideally between 60-67F. A drop in core body temp is a sleep signal for the body that it is time to sleep
  • Dark room: Try black out curtains or an eye mask. No nightlight, and cover clocks and other things that emit light.
  • Quiet: Try earplugs to help if your sleep is disrupted by external noises/partner snores, etc. White noise can also help to cancel out distracting noises that can disrupt sleep.

Timing: Establish a regular sleep schedule.

  • Establish a sleep-wake routine: Stick to a routine, even on weekends. Any routine that has a bedtime before midnight and allows for 7-8 hours is reasonable.
  • Don’t eat for at least 2 hours before bed: Your body needs time to begin metabolizing and absorbing food.
  • Keep naps to 20-30 minutes in the early to mid-afternoon: Research shows that naps (even 9 minutes long) can be restorative. Short naps prevent person from going into deep sleep, which can extend the duration of the nap, result in the person feeling sluggish, and interfere with nighttime sleep. If you have sleep problems like insomnia, naps can add to the problem especially if taken late in the day. Naps do not make up for chronic sleep loss or poor-quality nighttime sleep.

For more information, check out this Lifestyle Medicine Sleep Fact Sheet.

Ready to take the next step?

Our Lifestyle Medicine team is here to support you on your journey to better health. Connect with one of our Board-Certified Lifestyle Medicine Specialists today.

Delicious Appetizer, Healthy For Your Heart

Rainbow Frittata

Diabetic Living Magazine
This delicious frittata is loaded with heart-healthy, omega-3 enriched eggs and a medley of colorful vegetables. Start cooking the vegetables on the stove and finish them up in the oven with the egg mixture. To serve, top with avocado slices, grape tomatoes and a touch of sriracha.
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 219 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1/4 cup 1/2 inch pieces sweet potato
  • 1/4 cup 1/2 inch pieces yellow sweet pepper
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh broccoli
  • 8 omega-3 enriched eggs
  • 1 teaspoon fresh basil snipped
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme snipped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 avocado halved, seeded, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 5 1/2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes halved
  • Sriracha Sauce optional

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350 F. Coat an oven-going 10-inch nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Add sweet potato, sweet pepper and broccoli; cook and stir over medium 5 to 7 minutes or until tender.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together eggs, basil, thyme, salt and black pepper. Pour mixture over vegetables in skillet. Cook, without stirring, until mixture begins to set on bottom and around edges. Using a spatula, lift egg mixture so uncooked portion flows underneath.
  • Transfer skillet to oven; cook 5 minutes or until egg mixture is set. Remove from oven. Let stand 2 minutes. Top servings with avocado and tomatoes. Drizzle with sriracha.

Notes

Nutrition Facts

1/4 frittata (3/4 cup)
 
219 calories; protein 13.9g; carbohydrates 7.7g; dietary fiber 3.3g; sugars 2.2g; fat 15g; saturated fat 3.9g; cholesterol 372mg; vitamin a iu 2112.2IU; vitamin c 25mg; folate 90.8mcg; calcium 70.7mg; iron 2.2mg; magnesium 30.2mg; potassium 455.8mg; sodium 226mg.
2 lean protein, 1 1/2 vegetable, 1 fat
Keyword bone health, dairy free, gluten free, healthy aging, healthy immunity, low calorie, low carbohydrate, low sodium, nut free, soy free, vegetarian
Tempeh Tacos
A delicious and heart healthy meal for any day of the week.
Check out this recipe

Tempeh Tacos

Tempeh Tacos

A delicious and heart healthy meal for any day of the week.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 8 tacos

Ingredients
  

  • 1 medium red bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1/4 cup onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup canned diced tomatoes (with juice) or low sodium salsa
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 package tempeh, finely chopped
  • 8 soft corn tortillas (4 inch diameter)
  • Salt to taste (optional)

Instructions
 

  • Add one (1) tablespoon of water to a skillet and sauté pepper strips and diced onion until soft.
  • Then add diced tomatoes (with juice), cumin, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, red pepper flakes and oregano.
  • Cook over medium heat for 3-5 minutes.
  • Add chopped tempeh and cook for 2-3 more minutes or until the tempeh has absorbed some of the sauce.
  • Serve over corn tortillas. Top with cilantro lime slaw or other toppings like jalapeno, low sodium hot sauce/salsa, lettuce, avocado slices (optional).

Notes

Chef’s Tip:  Use a food processor to easily chop the tempeh. Be sure not to overmix.
Keyword heart healthy, tacos, tempeh, vegetarian
Rainbow Frittata
This delicious frittata is loaded with heart-healthy, omega-3 enriched eggs and a medley of colorful vegetables. Start cooking the vegetables on the stove and finish them up in the oven with the egg mixture. To serve, top with avocado slices, grape tomatoes and a touch of sriracha.
Check out this recipe

6 Tips for Thriving during the Holiday Season

Along with laughter and good cheer, the holidays often bring busier schedules, an abundance of indulgent food and drink and increased financial stress, all of which can have a negative effect on our physical and mental health.

The good news is looking at the holidays through the six pillars of Lifestyle Medicine gives us the opportunity to rethink those holiday traditions that don’t contribute to our whole-health and focus instead on prioritizing self-care so that we can truly thrive this holiday season.

1. Manage Stress Better

Stress can play a part in headaches, high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, skin conditions, asthma, arthritis, depression and anxiety. Chronic stress coupled with acute stressors that we may experience during the holidays leave the body overstimulated with high levels of basal cortisol which in turn increases inflammation and causes or worsens disease.

Lifestyle Tip: Tools like regulated breathing, positive thinking, meditation, gratitude, and exercise can help manage stress and fight inflammation when used every day.

2. Eat Smarter

Food truly is medicine.  Beyond the physical benefits that a healthy diet affords us, food also effects our mood. It can be especially challenging to make healthy food choices during the holidays. 

Lifestyle Tip: Remind yourself to eat slowly and savor each bite, especially when it comes to calorie dense foods. Be truly present when sharing a meal with those you care about by disconnecting from electronics.

3. Sleep More Soundly

Getting a good night’s sleep is one of the most important things we can do for our overall health and well-being.  Sleep deprivation leaves the brain exhausted, and chronic sleep deprivation is strongly correlated with behavioral health issues, such as depression, anxiety and substance use.

Lifestyle Tip: Set yourself up for a restorative night of sleep by preparing the right way. Strive to set and stick to a sleep routine that allows for 7-8 hours of sleep per night in a cool, dark place and try to disconnect from screens two hours before bedtime.

4. Connect with Others

Social connections and relationships affect our physical, mental and emotional health. Research shows that the single most important predictor of human happiness and long life is having strong social connections. There is evidence that health related measures like blood pressure and heart rate improve even with short, positive social interactions. Technology can improve social connectedness in some cases but research also finds that those who use social media the most are at a higher risk for depression.

Lifestyle Tip: Try chatting with the person in line next to you while doing your holiday shopping, or smiling as you pass others in the hallway – these positive micro interactions scattered throughout your day can have a big impact. If you use social media, be mindful of how you use technology to support the social connections in your life.

5. Move More

Consistent regular exercise benefits us both mentally and physically. Moving our bodies, especially in nature, can do wonders for our whole health. In fact, studies show that being active for as little as 10 minutes per day can positively impact our mood.

Lifestyle Tip: Even as the days get shorter and colder, make it a priority to move naturally throughout the day doing things you love; walk with friends, ride a bike, dance, or play with the children and pets in your life.

6. Avoid Risky Substances

We know that reducing the intake of items like alcohol, vaping and smoking improve our physical health, but they can also have an impact on our mental health and happiness.  When we are not using substances, we are more able to be present in the moment and notice the positive things around us.

Lifestyle Tip: Take a moment to be aware of when you might be using these substances to alter your reality and focus instead on working to identify positive strategies to cope with life’s daily stressors.

Ready to take the next step?

Our Lifestyle Medicine team is here to support you on your journey to better health. Connect with one of our Board-Certified Lifestyle Medicine Specialists today.

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