...think healthier

From The Cooper Institute and Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas

The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender. - Vincent Lombardi


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Written by July 17, 2014

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

It’s official – summer is here! I was tipped off by the 100° temperatures, an abundance of fresh fruit and veggies in the markets, and the MLB All-Star game… As we prepare (here in Texas) to break records of 100°+ days, it’s important to be reminded on how to safely remain active (and healthy) outdoors with the increasing heat indices and temperatures. The best solution to beat the heat, while continuing to get the recommended amounts of physical activity, is being educated and employing safety measures. According to the CDC, almost 6,000 individuals were treated in emergency rooms each year for

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Written by July 10, 2014

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

For years, many women have limited or avoided eating fish during pregnancy or feeding it to their young children. Their concern—mercury—which in high enough levels has the potential to damage their developing nervous systems. And in fact, in 2004, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued recommendations stating maximum amounts of fish that pregnant women and young children should be limited to, but at the time, did not promote a minimum amount that should be consumed. Research over the past 10 years, has overwhelmingly highlighted the importance of “appropriate” amounts of fish in the

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Written by July 3, 2014

Rachel Huber, MPH, RD

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

Happy Independence Day, America! Freedom, family, picnics, parades, barbecues, and fireworks pop into mind. And let’s not forget the over-indulgent hot dog eating contests! An earlier post pops to mind that encourages you to “think before you eat!” How frequently do you eat? Do you eat because you are physically hungry or do you eat as a result of other internal or external factors - like because you’re bored or because you’re at a party? Researchers from the University of North Carolina set out to answer these questions by analyzing data from several national surveys of food intake in the U.S. They

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Written by June 26, 2014

Carey Shore, MSc


The average U.S. adult consumes 14.6% of total daily calories from added sugars, such as those found in non-diet soft drinks and many other foods and beverages. High intake of added sugars is associated with higher calorie intake and lower diet quality, which can increase the risk for obesity, prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease1. Because of Americans preference for sweeter foods, the use of non-nutritive sweeteners (NNS) has exploded over the past few decades. Since 1958, the Food and Drug Administration has been responsible for evaluating the safety and acceptable daily intake levels of NNS for the population.

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Written by June 19, 2014

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

Summer is coming… This Saturday, June 21!! With the summer heat comes cool thoughts of beaches, water parks, and ice cream. Yummy ice cream – a delicious, somewhat nutritious (i.e., calcium), hot weather treat. But be mindful that ice cream is high in calories. For example, a Baskin-Robbins banana split would add 1,010 calories to your day’s total calorie intake. For many people, that could be more than 50% of their daily calorie need. OMG! It’s okay – stay calm. An earlier post floats to mind that can help you “keep your cool” when selecting summer chillers and planning activities. The TodayIWill website

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Written by June 12, 2014

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

For years, scratch that, decades we have known that as a nation we need to move more and eat less but unfortunately our attempts to do so have been failing. It seems that we keep trying the same methods that don’t work. Insanity, by the way, can be defined as is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results. So what is the key to engaging in a healthier lifestyle and losing weight? Many individuals, especially those who are already living a healthy lifestyle, have the mentality of “just do it” but the reality is making behavior

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Written by June 5, 2014

Carey Shore, MSc


The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans advise consumption of 8 ounces of fish per week in order to reach an average daily intake of 250 mg of omega-3 fatty acids1. At present, per capita consumption remains at approximately half of this recommended level. The Dietary Guidelines are based not only on fish being a good source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids, but also on clinical studies associating fish consumption with a reduced risk of coronary artery disease in adults, and with improved neurological outcomes in infants and young children2. These recommendations are also based on evidence that the health

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Written by June 3, 2014

Kenneth H. Cooper, MD, MPH


In light of recent discussions around schools wanting to opt out of healthy school lunch programs, Dr. Kenneth H. Cooper, Founder and Chairman of Cooper Aerobics, would like to take a moment to offer his point of view… Who Says Kids Won’t Eat Fruits and Veggies? Many families face serious health and weight challenges due to lack of proper nutrition and exercise. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that since 1980, the percentage of overweight children ages 6 – 11 has doubled, and the percentage of overweight adolescents ages 12 – 19 has tripled. In addition, less than

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Written by May 29, 2014

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

Every team needs a coach, right? Someone to motivate and encourage when the challenges seem overwhelming. Someone to help develop the skills needed to be a success. Someone to recognize those successes. Individuals need coaches, too. Especially those trying to lose weight. I’m inspired by an earlier post that provides some insight into coaching healthy behavior changes. Many doctors today are actually taking time out of their brief patient interactions to talk about weight loss. Given that most Americans are overweight or obese, this is a good thing. But, unfortunately, physician recommendations on behavior change aren’t very effective unless delivered using certain

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Written by May 22, 2014

Steve Farrell, PhD

Science Officer
The Cooper Institute

If you saw the headline ‘dog bites man’, you’d probably just shrug your shoulders because that sort of thing happens every day. Imagine your reaction if you saw the headline ‘man bites dog’. Now that would make for some interesting reading! We have known for decades that higher levels of physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness are each strongly associated with a decreased risk of illness and death. Current public health guidelines call for adults to be physically active for at least 150 minutes per week if working at a moderate intensity, or for at least 75 minutes per week if

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