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Archive for July, 2013

More access points for Seniors’ Mobility and Enabling Fund

stock-elderly-play-chess
Elderly men playing chess in Chinatown (Photo/channelnewsasia.com/Francine Lim)

Singaporeans who want to tap into the Seniors’ Mobility and Enabling Fund can now do so at 114 access points at restructured hospitals, community hospitals and seniors activity centres.

SINGAPORE: Singaporeans who want to tap into the Seniors’ Mobility and Enabling Fund can now do so at more places.

There are now 114 access points at restructured hospitals, community hospitals and seniors activity centres.

The fund, which aims to help seniors remain mobile and live independently, was enhanced to S$50 million during Budget 2013. Since July 1, 700 applications have been approved.

Minister of State for Health, Dr Amy Khor explained: “We have implemented a simplified means-testing framework for the elderly living in three-room HDB flats and smaller so that they can automatically receive subsidies for assistive devices that cost less than $500. We have also expanded the use of the fund to also include consumables for a limited number of seniors who are receiving home healthcare services.”

As part of the government’s efforts to help Singaporeans age gracefully, Marine Parade was chosen for a pilot programme to implement various initiatives to help Singaporeans age in the community.

If these programmes are successful in Marine Parade, they will be implemented in different parts of Singapore. So far, there has been good progress in the pilot project in Marine Parade.

Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong, who is also MP for Marine Parade, said the government is trying to make Singapore a senior-friendly country and so he offered Marine Parade to be piloted for programmes on ageing in the community.

Mr Goh visited three flats to meet older residents who have benefitted from the seniors’ mobility fund.

He said: “If I can make Marine Parade a senior-friendly estate with a happy environment for them, likewise, we can do it for the whole of Singapore. Marine Parade has worked very well with the government to upgrade the physical features of Marine Parade into senior friendly features. Even in Marine Parade, I am now thinking of Community Integrated Care for senior citizens.

“In other words, get the community, the families, the government to see how we can approach this in total, starting with financial education, active ageing programmes, and very importantly, moving up to integrated care.”

Mr Goh said he intends to firm up the plan with agencies like People’s Association, the Health Ministry and the Social and Family Development Ministry before approaching the government for some support.

– CNA/fa

via More access points for Seniors’ Mobility and Enabling Fund – Channel NewsAsia.

Best Free Apps Easy Calendar

EASY CALENDAR

Easy Calendar (4.5 stars with 1485 User Ratings) 
iPhone App 
$1.99 → Free

Note: iPad version has gone free for the first time ever. badge_appstore-lrg

 

easy-calendar

Easy Calendar is an app that allows you to easily view your weekly events at a glance and input calendar events in a matter of just a few taps. Editing your apps only takes a few more taps and you can quickly jump between desired week or event views. It integrates completely with the stock iPhone and iPad calendar app, pulling in whatever you have over there as well. With iCloud, Outlook, Google Calendar, and other CalDAV calendar syncing, Easy Calendar is a versatile and easy to use alternative to the other calendar apps that just don’t measure up.

via Best Free Apps of the Day on 7/28. ConsoleCam, Easy Calendar, Boy RPG, & More! | App Chronicles.

Ice Cream Sandwiches

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INGREDIENTS

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/4 cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon light corn syrup

1 large egg yolk

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 tablespoon sour cream

1 pint ice cream (any flavor)

PREPARATION

Whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat butter, sugar, and corn syrup in another medium bowl until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg yolk and vanilla; beat until combined.

Reduce mixer speed to low, add dry ingredients, and mix until just combined. Mix in sour cream. Form dough into a 3/4-inch-thick square, wrap tightly in plastic, and chill until firm, 2–3 hours.

Preheat oven to 350°. Roll out dough between 2 sheets of parchment to about 1/8-inch thickness. Transfer dough (still between parchment) to a large baking sheet and chill until firm, at least 30 minutes. Remove top sheet of parchment (it will come away easily if dough is well chilled) and trim to a 14×10-inch rectangle. Bake cookie until dry and just set at edges, 8–10 minutes. Transfer baking sheet to a wire rack; let cookie cool.

Trim cookie to a 12×9-inch rectangle, then cut into twelve 3-inch squares. Scoop ice cream into a medium bowl and mix just until softened, 2–3 minutes. Turn 6 cookies bottom side up. Dividing evenly, scoop ice cream on top and flatten slightly; top with remaining cookies, pressing down gently. Place sandwiches on a parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours. Cut sandwiches in half on a diagonal to make triangles. Wrap in parchment, if desired, and freeze until ready to serve.

DO AHEAD: Ice cream sandwiches can be made 1 week ahead. Keep frozen.

via Ice Cream Sandwiches Recipe: Bon Appétit.

Mentally ill people ‘hit hard by recession’

People with mental health problems are more likely to end up unemployed in a recession

 

The economic recession across Europe has had a profound impact on people with mental health problems, research from King’s College London suggests.

Between 2006 and 2010, the rate of unemployment for those with mental health problems rose twice as much as for other people – from 12.7% to 18.2%.

Men and those with low levels of education were particularly affected, the study said.

The authors warn that social exclusion could increase among the mentally ill.

Scientists collected data from 20,000 people across 27 EU countries using the Eurobarometer survey, which looked at mental health, attitudes to those with mental health problems and current employment rate.


It’s harder for people to get a job if there’s already a gap on their CV.”

Dr Sara Evans-LackoInstitute of Psychiatry

For those without mental health problems, the unemployment rate increased from 7.1% in 2006 to 9.8% in 2010 – half the increase compared with the previous group.

In addition, the study identified that men with mental health problems were particularly vulnerable. The unemployment rate for this group increased from 13.7% in 2006 to 21.7% in 2010.

Stigma

The researchers, from the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College London, found that negative attitudes to people with mental health problems were a factor in the rise in unemployment.

The study said: “Living in a country where a higher proportion of individuals believe that individuals with mental illness are dangerous was associated with a higher likelihood of unemployment for people with mental health problems, but did not influence employment rates for those without mental health problems.”

It is thought that unemployed people with mental health problems may also be less likely to seek help and and may need specific outreach support.

Dr Sara Evans-Lacko, lead study author and lecturer at the Institute of Psychiatry, said the study did not have unemployment rates for individual EU countries. She suggested the trend was a general one across Europe which was not specific to any one culture.

“During a recession people who already have mental health problems find their economic and social position gets worse.

“We don’t exactly know why, but it’s harder for people to get a job if there’s already a gap on their CV and if employers need to cut staff then these people might be more vulnerable.”

The danger is that economic hardship can intensify the social exclusion of vulnerable people, such as those with mental health problems, the study said.

‘Legal duty’

Prof Graham Thornicroft, also from the research team at the Institute of Psychiatry, said there were steps which could be taken to prevent this happening.


Mental well-being depends on many factors, including employment status, working conditions and financial security, all of which can be affected during a recession.”

Beth MurphyMind

“Governments need to be aware of these risks, and employers need to be aware of their legal duty to comply with the Equality Act to support people with mental health problems coming into, and staying in, employment,” he said.

Beth Murphy, head of information at mental health charity Mind, said the findings were worrying.

“Mental well-being depends on many factors, including employment status, working conditions and financial security, all of which can be affected during a recession.

“Since 2008, the Mind Infoline has received an increasing number of enquiries from people concerned about the impact of money and unemployment on their mental health, which could well be attributed to the economic downturn.

“Specifically, redundancy is known to trigger depression and suicidal thoughts, as is the case with debt.”

She added: “Losing your job is a sudden change and there can also be financial implications through loss of income, which in itself can cause anxiety. We’d urge anybody struggling with their mental health to seek support.”

via BBC News – Mentally ill people ‘hit hard by recession’.

‘Boarding’ increases hospital stays and spreads infections, researchers say.

A reduction in bed numbers and an increase in hospital admissions has led to boarding becoming more common

 

Moving patients between wards results in them staying in hospital longer and increases the risk of infections spreading, researchers have warned.

Dundee University researchers examined boarding – where a patient is moved from a specialist ward to a ward treating different conditions.

They claim a reduction in bed numbers and a rise in hospital admissions had led to this becoming more common.

This was especially the case among older patients.

Prof Marion McMurdo and Dr Miles Witham, from the university’s school of medicine, said that while boarding was sometimes viewed as a “necessary evil”, it appeared to be a “false economy”.


Regrettably, frail and vulnerable elderly patients, admitted to hospital as a result of serious illness and requiring specialist medical care, are disproportionately affected by boarding”

Dr Neil DewhurstRCPE

Prof McMurdo said: “Boarding is sometimes viewed as a necessary evil – at least compared to the alternative of having no bed in which to admit patients from the overflowing acute admissions unit.

“Yet, at a systems level, boarding appears to be a false economy – every ward move increases length of stay, thus exacerbating the very problem that boarding attempts to circumvent.

“Worse still, frequent moves around a hospital are likely to increase the risk of infection transmission, a factor trusts have been advised to incorporate into bed management policies.”

Dr Neil Dewhurst, president of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (RCPE), said it would “strongly support today’s call to reduce unnecessary ward moves in the elderly”.

He said: “Regrettably, frail and vulnerable elderly patients, admitted to hospital as a result of serious illness and requiring specialist medical care, are disproportionately affected by boarding. This involves placing patients in non-specialised wards due to bed shortages.

“Such patients are likely to be the least likely to be able to cope with repeated ward moves.”

‘Vicious circle’

He added: “There is evidence that this can increase their length of stay, their likelihood of readmission to hospital and reduce their likelihood of continuing to live independently at home. This, in turn, creates a vicious circle and places further pressure on already over-stretched hospital services.”

He said there were currently insufficient properly-supported acute beds in Scottish hospitals to ensure that such patients were treated in the right wards by the right medical staff at the right time.

He added that the RCPE was working with the Scottish government to reduce boarding and would be developing guidance for the NHS in Scotland, to be published later this year.

The Dundee research has been published in the journal Age and Ageing and says changes of environment can increase the risk of both falls and delirium among patients – problems associated with a greater risk of serious injury and increased death rates.

Dr Witham said a survey of medical staff had shown that 92% of doctors would “refuse to have a relative of theirs boarded out”, adding: “This hardly inspires confidence in the quality of care received by patients who are moved around the hospital environment.”

Daily reviews

Health Secretary Alex Neil said: “Effective management of patient flows through their time in hospital is one of our priorities.

“Scotland is the first country in the UK to deal with the issue of boarding to further improve the quality of care in our hospitals.

“In December we adopted a new collaborative work programme between the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (RCPE) and NHS Scotland that will address the practice known as ‘boarding’.

“This work has already begun and is proving productive. However, there is more to be done and this will involve reviewing the number and speciality type of beds for acute care, ensuring that there are enough medical consultants and nurses and having daily reviews of patients by consultants.”

Labour health spokesman Neil Findlay said: “SNP choices have led to cuts to nursing staff, a scandal over fiddled waiting times and the loss of hundreds of hospital beds.

“This isn’t sustainable and there has to be a better strategy to cope with the increasing demands on services that alleviates pressure on overworked staff but also gives patients the care and respect they deserve.”

via BBC News – ‘Boarding’ increases hospital stays and spreads infections, researchers say..

Alzheimer’s blood test edges closer

Alzheimer’s is a growing problem as people live longer

 

Researchers believe they are closer to developing a blood test that could diagnose Alzheimer’s.

There is no definitive test for the brain-wasting disease. Doctors rely on cognition tests and brain scans.

A technique published in the journal Genome Biology showed differences in the tiny fragments of genetic material floating in the blood could be used to identify patients.

The test was accurate 93% of the time in trials on 202 people.

One of the main goals of Alzheimer’s research is to find ways of detecting the disease earlier.

It starts years before symptoms appear and it is thought that future treatments will need to be given before large parts of the brain are destroyed. This will require new ways of testing for the condition.

The team at the Saarland University, in Germany, analysed 140 microRNAs (fragments of genetic code) in patients with Alzheimer’s disease and in healthy people.

They found 12 microRNAs in the blood which were present in markedly different levels in people with Alzheimer’s. These became the basis of their test.

Early trials showed it was successful and was “able to distinguish with high diagnostic accuracies between Alzheimer’s disease patients and healthy” people.

However, more research to improve accuracy and to see whether it would work in the clinic is still needed before the test would be considered as a way of diagnosing patients.

Dr Eric Karran, from the charity Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “This is an interesting approach to studying changes in blood in Alzheimer’s and suggests that microRNAs could be playing a role in the disease.

“The findings highlight the importance of continuing research efforts to understand the contribution of microRNAs to Alzheimer’s, but the translation of this into a blood test for Alzheimer’s in the clinic is still some way off.

“A blood test to help detect Alzheimer’s could be a useful addition to a doctor’s diagnostic armoury, but such a test must be well validated before it’s considered for use. We need to see these findings confirmed in larger samples and more work is needed to improve the test’s ability to distinguish Alzheimer’s from other neurological conditions.”

via BBC News – Alzheimer’s blood test edges closer.

Testicular cancer survival rates ‘soaring’ in UK


Growing awareness of the cancer is believed to be partly behind the rise

The overwhelming majority of men with testicular cancer are now surviving for at least 10 years, figures released by the charity Cancer Research UK show.

They show survival rates in the UK soared to 96% in 2009, much higher than in the early 70s when 68% survived.

The organisation said attention needed to be focused now on the remaining 4%.

Experts said that changes in treatments offered as well as a growing awareness of testicular cancer could explain the improved survival figures.

Around 2,300 people are diagnosed with the cancer each year in the UK. The main symptom is a lump or swelling in the testicles.

Survival rates have made significant progress since the 70s and reached 90% by the start of the 90s.

‘Success story’

Dr Harpal Kumar, the chief executive of Cancer Research UK, said: “A clear success story in cancer research has been the drug cisplatin, which our scientists helped to develop.

“This is helping almost all men with testicular cancer to beat the disease and is a shining example of what we can achieve through dedicated research.

“For some types of cancer, the word ‘cure’ is almost a reality – 96% of men with testicular cancer are now cured. But it’s important we recognise the four per cent who aren’t surviving the disease, as well as the fact that we still need treatments to be kinder to patients in the future.”

Katherine Mutsvangwa, from the male cancer charity Orchid, said earlier diagnosis was a important part of falling death rates.

“There has been a lot of awareness of testicular cancer in the time. Men are presenting earlier, before it has spread to other parts of the body.”

She said the 4% of patients who were not surviving tended to be diagnosed much later or with “much more aggressive” testicular cancer.

via BBC News – Testicular cancer survival rates ‘soaring’ in UK.

Escalator etiquette: The dos and don’ts

Michael Bloomberg, Mayor of New York, has said he always walks on escalators. Good exercise, yes, but some cities discourage it. And there’s one thing obstructing walkers – people who stand.

 

There are walkers and there are standers, and Mayor Michael Bloomberg is a walker.

In announcing a plan to make New York’s buildings more stair-friendly, the mayor said he always walks on escalators.

Most escalator walking happens at underground stations – people don’t tend to be in such a hurry in a shopping centre, for instance.

But Bloomberg is still in a minority of escalator users around the world. In London, about 25% of people on the Tube walk on the escalators and in Shanghai only about 3%, according to a study.

And in some countries, walking on escalators is discouraged. On the Toronto subway system, signs that encouraged people to walk on the left were removed at the recommendation of safety experts.


Gripes – the big three

  • Standing on wrong side
  • Luggage in walking lane
  • Stopping when disembarking

A ban was also considered for Tokyo’s transport system but never enforced. And in the UK, people of a certain age will remember the chilling public information films of the 1970s that featured a pair of children’s blue wellington boots getting sucked into the machinery. “Stand still and don’t walk down,” it urged.

Either that message never got through or it was soon forgotten, because any such caution has melted away in the UK. There are 426 escalators on the London Underground and there’s a signposted system of standing to the right and walking to the left.

Research in 2011 by the University of Greenwich found that 75% of people at Paddington Tube station stood and the left-right rule was observed by nearly 90% of people.

But the custom varies depending where you are. The same team of researchers, led by Edwin Galea, earlier found that in Shanghai, only 2.4% walked and there was no preferred side to walk on.

Usually there is a walking lane on busy subway escalators, says Galea, and it’s not clear if the Shanghai free-for-all reflected a cultural phenomenon or was simply people getting to grips with what was a new station and escalator.

Grigny station in Paris
Get stuck behind this lot and you’ve missed your train

Most escalators across the world that do have a standing/walking system follow the “walk on the left” custom, to speed up the flow. One of the exceptions is Australia, where people walk on the right.

It’s interesting that so many countries walk left, says Galea, but no-one’s quite sure why. “It could be a random effect, it could be a copy effect, or it could have something to do with the side of the road we drive on. It could be some kind of rationalisation based on this.”


A walker’s view

“You’re too tired to walk? Counterpoint: no, you’re not. How did you get in this subway station to begin with? Were you hauled here in a wheelbarrow? How do you move about the city? Are you carried by the scruff of your neck in your mother’s mouth like a wayward puppy? I suspect that, no, you walk. You walked here. You can walk down the escalator. All of us are tired, you see. That is why we don’t want to spend any more time in this train station than is absolutely necessary. That is why we want to catch the first available train – the train that is about to pull in now. Which we will miss. Because we are stuck on this escalator.”

Hamilton Nolan, Gawker

The British drive on the left and so choose to walk that side on escalators, he says, but in countries that drive on the right, the rationale could be that you drive on the right so you stand on the right.

But one thing unites all the cities that do have a system – there’s conflict when people obstruct the walking lane.

“Able-bodied people standing on the downward escalator are in effect robbing the people behind them of time,” says Hamilton Nolan, who writes for Gawker and regularly uses the New York subway.

“Their presumptuous need for leisure may cause everyone behind them to miss a train they would have otherwise caught. Then those people are forced to stand and wait on a subway platform for many extra minutes. Those are precious minutes of life that none of us will get back.”

It’s not open war, he adds, it’s a war waged in the privacy of the enraged minds of walkers who are forced to stand impatiently behind as the escalator slowly descends.

But people who stand defend themselves by telling walkers not to be so impatient, because the escalator is doing the work for them.

On one forum, a stander says: “If the person is in such a rush, why not just take the stairs? Even when the escalator is packed and there’s nowhere to move, I see these same people moaning and groaning about not being able to pass.”

There are plenty of examples online of frustrated commuters venting their anger about what they regard as anti-social behaviour. Pet gripes are people standing on the wrong side, not leaving enough space between standers, stopping at the top and blocking the way with luggage.

San Francisco artist Helen Tseng summed up the gripes in one illustration commissioned by a website called The Bold Italic.

Helen Tseng's illustration
Illustration by Helen Tseng for the Bold Italic website

Her picture, published in January, was widely picked up by other media and she thinks the subject tapped into something that people were unconsciously thinking – the etiquette of escalator travel. “Going on escalators is a universal thing, analogous to traffic, and people get traffic rage too.”

In Toronto, that tension has been diffused since the signs telling people to walk on the left were removed, says commuter Tom Robertson. “You can tell some people get a little annoyed when they are standing behind someone on the left but I’ve never seen anyone say anything about it. I think many people have forgotten about the signs.”

A spokesman for the Toronto Transit Commission said he could not recall any escalator accidents in Toronto.

Indeed, injuries and fatalities on escalators are rare. In Beijing, one died and dozens were injured in 2011 when an escalator suddenly changed direction and threw them off balance. Other cases have involved people being entrapped by clothes or hair, but deaths are very rare.

Despite the blue wellingtons being chewed up in the film, the chance of a stray shoelace or skirt getting caught in the gap between moving steps is minimum, says David Chan of University College London, who researched safety when he designed a curved escalator.

But if you really want to avoid escalators, you should move to Wyoming.

The US state has only two escalators, both in a bank.

via BBC News – Escalator etiquette: The dos and don’ts.

隨時「乾洗手」 殺死腸病毒?

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腸病毒疫情創七年新高,單週病例已破三萬五千人次,今年流行的病毒株,雖非致命性最高的腸病毒七十一型,但少數孩子會出現大片水泡的病兆,有時易與水痘混淆。

腸病毒是生長於腸道的核糖核酸病毒(RNA病毒),大致可分四大類,包括克沙奇A型病毒、克沙奇B型病毒、伊科病毒,以及新腸病毒(如:重症率高的腸病毒七十一型)。感染後,第一週的傳染力最強,病毒甚至可持續從糞便中排出兩到三個月,但臨床上,鮮少有腸胃症狀。

相對於去氧核糖核酸病毒(DNA病毒,編按:台灣常見的DNA病毒有B型肝炎病毒),RNA病毒有較高的變異性,較易產生突變,這也是腸病毒,較不易研發出有效疫苗的原因之一。

今夏流行的腸病毒是去年底就在美國盛行的克沙奇A6病毒,大部分孩子的水泡主要出現在手、足、口及泡疹型咽唊炎,口腔內的上顎、咽部會有小水泡或潰瘍。

有時家中兩個孩子,同時得了腸病毒,一個可能是以手、足、口為主要表現,另一個卻只有泡疹型咽唊炎。今年少部分的腸病毒患童,水泡會特別多,分布範圍廣,甚至大於體表面積一○%(編註:一個手掌等於體表的一%,體表面積一○%,約等於十個手掌大),水泡會長到額頭上、全身,這是以往較少見到的情況。

本週由專精小兒感染症的黃瑽寧醫師,分享如何預防腸病毒的關鍵之道。

今夏流行病徵-冒大量水泡、掉指甲

年齡越小的孩子,因免疫系統尚未發育完全,在感染腸病毒時,通常水泡會長得比較多、比較廣泛,但若是原本就患有異位性皮膚炎的過敏兒,因為皮膚的天然屏障較差,缺乏保護膜,在罹患腸病毒時,有可能因為水泡長得太厲害,而被誤以為是長水痘或是泡疹性的濕疹,而影響到用藥的選擇,甚至誤用到抗生素治療。

在臨床診斷上,最精確的是做病毒培養,但由於病毒培養的報告,往往需要等待一到兩週的時間,所以,還是會依據臨床症狀做判斷。

若是已經打過水痘疫苗的孩子,較容易排除是水痘,而腸病毒的水泡跟水痘的水泡,較大的差異在於腸病毒的水泡,不會像水痘有新舊雜陳的現象,通常是萬「泡」齊發,一口氣一起長出來,也沒有明顯的搔癢感。另外,腸病毒在發完疹子後,只會有些色素沉積,一段時間就會淡化不見,不會像水痘那麼容易留下凹疤。

至於,泡疹性濕疹的病童,本來就不多,今年若有類似的病症,也比較有可能是得到這種不典型的腸病毒。

這次的腸病毒,在發病後幾週,有些孩子可能會有掉指甲的現象,看起來像兩層指甲疊在一起,上層的指甲會脫掉,有如指甲脫了一層皮,雖然看起來很痛,但小朋友並不會有明顯不適,也不致影響到孩子的日常活動,請家長不必特別憂心。

留意重症症狀-持續嗜睡、嘔吐或肌抽躍

雖然今年腸病毒的臨床症狀,水泡有可能長得比較誇張、可怕,所幸克沙奇A6病毒,不像惡名昭彰的腸病毒七十一型,那麼容易出現重症,通常發燒個三天,發病一到兩週左右即可痊癒。

 

 

這段期間,小朋友可能會因泡疹性的咽唊炎而不肯喝水、胃口不佳,應多注意水分的補充,可以多給孩子喝些冰涼的飲料,以及冰淇淋、布丁等容易吞嚥,可紓解喉嚨不適的食品。

要特別提醒家長,腸病毒的克沙奇A6病毒,雖不像腸病毒七十一型會侵入腦幹有致命危機,但偶爾還是可能導致腦炎。今夏在臨床上,還是有極少數的腸病毒七十一型病毒個案出現。

家長仍宜多留意腸病毒的重症症狀,包括持續嗜睡、意識不清、持續嘔吐,這表示腸病毒,有可能已跑到腦部。

如果有肌抽躍,孩子在睡覺時,出現類似受到驚嚇的突發性全身肌肉收縮動作,這有可能是病毒攻到腦幹,導致睡眠中樞出現問題。倘若有呼吸急促、心跳加快、活動力降低,則有可能是出現心肌炎的症狀,都是需要馬上掛急診的情況。

漂白水清潔才正確-聚焦浴室、餐廳、遊戲區

酒精殺菌,是靠溶解病毒的脂質外套膜來殺死病毒,但由於腸病毒是屬於沒有脂質外套膜的病毒。因此,包括酒精,以及以酒精為主要殺菌成分的「乾洗手」商品,都無法有效殺死腸病毒。

在腸病毒的流行高峰期,以肥皂勤洗手、使用稀釋漂白水消毒,才是正確的防疫措施。而光用清水隨便洗洗,也沒有用,重點在於用肥皂洗手,尤其是手指間的指縫、指尖、大拇指,特別要認真搓洗,再用清水洗淨,並以拋棄式的紙巾擦乾,才不致讓洗手的效果打折扣。

大人也是會得腸病毒,但症狀通常較輕微,若有腸病毒的相關症狀,如:喉嚨癢癢的、吞嚥時,稍微有點喉嚨痛,即使沒有發燒,在照顧孩子時,還是應該戴上口罩,並且加強勤洗手。家人共用的浴室、餐桌,以及孩子常玩的遊戲區這三大重點區域,可用稀釋的含氯漂白水擦拭消毒。

同時,孩子若能作息正常,保持心情愉快,即可維持良好的抵抗力,較不容易生病。若孩子常隨流行病起舞,宜多留意孩子的作息及情緒。

【延伸閱讀】3步驟教你正確洗手

維持手部衛生,並不是把手沾濕,隨便搓搓,沖個水,就算洗乾淨。正確的洗手,至少得花上20秒。而容易忽略的指縫及指尖,更須以肥皂仔細搓洗。

1.掌對掌,手指交叉仔細搓洗容易忽略的指縫。

2.容易接觸病毒的指尖,可在手掌上,前後旋轉式搓洗。

3.以清水充分沖洗後,記得再以拋棄式的紙巾擦乾雙手。

via 隨時「乾洗手」 殺死腸病毒?-上 | 20130729 | 華人健康網.

蔬果「慢慢磨」 保留更多營養?

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為了多喝蔬果,三匹馬力高速調理機熱銷,現在又有慢磨機上市。究竟高速好?還是低速佳?

多年前,「三匹馬力」的果汁機掀起一股風潮,標榜馬力強大的果汁機可以打破食物細胞壁,提高蔬果的營養吸收效果。

這一兩年卻又冒出一種「慢磨機」,推翻了過去「三匹馬力」的神話,訴求「慢慢磨,以螺旋推進方式萃取蔬果原汁,一分鐘僅80轉,與一般高速旋轉粉碎機不同,因此可完整保留食物中含有生命力的活營養素,也完全保留蔬果天然的味道。」再加上人氣韓星的代言加持,慢磨機於是創造了另一個新的養生神話。

一快、一慢,到底蔬果汁該怎麼喝?哪種保留較多營養素?消費者該如何選擇?

《康健雜誌》記者與台灣營養基金會執行長吳映蓉做了簡單的實驗,比較一下慢磨機、一般榨汁機及三匹馬力調理機的優缺點,看慢磨機是否真如廣告中宣稱的神奇。

心得1:用調理機與慢磨機分別打芭樂汁,未加水的情況下,溫度只差一、兩度

我們在沒加水的情況下,分別使用調理機與慢磨機,打完後測量果汁的溫度,慢磨機約25度,調理機約26度。如果加了冰水打,就能減低調理機的刀片高速運轉所產生的高溫,因此破除了三匹馬力調理機「高溫會破壞維生素C」的迷思。

沐光臨床營養機構院長程涵宇營養師說,高溫的確會造成酵素、營養素的流失,但只要在40℃以內,都不至於破壞蔬果的酵素及維生素。

心得2:慢磨機打的芭樂汁的確原色原味

如要用高速調理機打芭樂汁,必須加水,否則會呈現泥狀,不好入口,但加水後又會稀釋掉水果的味道。而慢磨機研磨出的芭樂汁,就真的很純粹,確如廣告所言,「水果什麼顏色,打出來的汁就是什麼顏色」。連吳映蓉都笑說,喝了慢磨機磨出的芭樂汁,讓她馬上有買一台的衝動。

心得3:慢磨機濾掉的粗渣很可惜,少吃了很多人體需要的膳食纖維

三匹馬力調理機打出來的蔬果汁,是唯一能連纖維一起吃下去的機會,榨汁機與慢磨機都將大部份的粗渣濾掉,而慢磨機過濾掉的渣又較榨汁機多且粗。我們後來又分別以榨汁機與慢磨機來榨番茄汁,慢磨機過濾的渣較多,皮與籽也較完整。榨汁機榨出的番茄汁還是能看到些許果渣。

吳映蓉提到,蔬果富含人體無法自行合成的植化素,它讓蔬果有不同的顏色,具有抗氧化、調節免疫能力,甚至能激發體內解毒酵素的活性,但植化素其實在皮與籽中的比例較高,她擔心部份的非水溶性纖維與植化素,仍會隨著渣被過濾掉。

心得4:擔心甜度過高

吳映蓉認為,慢磨機與榨汁機的缺點就在於,因為沒有加水,若要打到一杯的量,需要用到很多的水果,擔心血糖過高。我們也試圖以葡萄榨汁,但慢磨機榨出的葡萄汁太甜,無法入口而宣告失敗。

吃新鮮蔬果最經濟實惠

比起調理機動輒要2萬元以上,慢磨機的價格親民不少,國產的約6000元就可入手,但韓國進口就要將近2萬。但如果每次要喝杯果汁都得如此大費周章,還得顧慮糖分是否太高、纖維是否不夠、到底吃進多少營養素,吳映蓉笑說,那還不如就直接吃新鮮蔬果最方便,也最便宜!

via 蔬果「慢慢磨」 保留更多營養? | 20130729 | 華人健康網.

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