Join our #SaludTues Tweetchat 1p ET 12/1/15: Latinos and HIV/AIDS

latino group cropped smallEvery year, 21% of new HIV/AIDS cases are diagnosed among U.S. Latinos.

On World AIDS Day on Dec. 1, 2015, let’s focus on changing this by using #SaludTues to tweet about innovative campaigns to improve prevention and programs to find solutions to HIV/AIDS in the Latino community.

  • WHAT: #SaludTues Tweetchat: “Latinos and HIV/AIDS: What’s Your Status?”
  • TIME/DATE: 1-2 p.m. ET (Noon-1 p.m. CT), Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015
  • WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues
  • HOST: @SaludToday
  • CO-HOSTS: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (@TalkHIV), Dr. Carlos Del Rio of Emory University (CarlosDelRio7) and many more!

We’ll open the floor to your stories and experiences as we explore:

  • Why is HIV/AIDS such a big issue for Latinos?
  • What role does culture and other factors preventing HIV/AIDS prevention among Latinos?
  • How can HIV/AIDS be prevented in the Latino community?
  • What stories, resources, and tips are available for the prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS?

Be sure to use the hashtag #SaludTues to follow the conversation on Twitter, share your stories and share resources that can help more Latinos stop HIV/AIDS.

#SaludTues is a weekly Tweetchat about Latino health at 12p CST/1p ET every Tuesday and hosted by @SaludToday, the Latino health social media campaign for the team at Salud America! and the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR) at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

Study: A Dose of Gratitute Keeps the Heart Young and Healthy

It’s the time of the year when we’re feeling grateful for being healthy, having a loving family and a job, but do you know gratitude can also keep your heart healthy?


A study  led by Paul Mills, professor of family medicine and public health at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine recruited 186 men and women who suffered from heart disease “either through years of sustained high blood pressure or as a result of a heart attack or even an infection of the heart itself.”

During the study Prof. Mills asked each participant to fill out a questionnaire to rate how grateful they were for the people, places or things in their lives.

“We found that more gratitude in these patients was associated with better mood, better sleep, less fatigue and lower levels of inflammatory biomarkers related to cardiac health,” Mills says. The study was published in the journal Spirituality in Clinical Practice®.

Mills followed-up with a study to look deeper into the effects of gratitude and tested 40 patients “for heart disease and noted biological indications of heart disease such as inflammation and heart rhythm.” Then he asked half of the patients to keep a journal and write about all the things they felt grateful for.

After two months Mills revisited with the 40 patients and found that those that kept a journal decreased inflammation levels and heart rhythm improved.

“Taking the time to focus on what you are thankful for,” he says, “letting that sense of gratitude wash over you — this helps us manage and cope.”

How to Prevent Cervical Cancer among Latinos

hpv psa redesA vaccine can’t prevent disease unless people use it.

In Texas, only 39% of girls and 15% of boys ages 13-17 complete the three-dose HPV vaccine for the human papillomavirus (HPV), a common sexually transmitted infection that can cause cervical cancer and other problems.

Dr. Deborah Parra-Medina has a plan to change that.

Parra-Medina, a Latino health researcher at the Institute for Health Promotion Research at the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, received a new $1.2 million grant from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas to develop an professional education and community outreach program to increase awareness and uptake of the HPV vaccine among young boys and girls in South Texas.

She and her team will train local health care providers to deliver accurate HPV vaccine info and strongly recommend HPV vaccination to patients and parents.

“Increased vaccination coverage among adolescents will help reduce morbidity and mortality from HPV-related diseases and can help reduce or eliminate health disparities, particularly cervical cancer,” said Parra-Medina, who also is co-director of the South Texas Area Heath Education Centers Program.

For the project, Parra-Medina and her team, including The Immunization Partnership and South Texas Area Heath Education Centers, will conduct surveys, interviews, and patient chart reviews to understand the HPV vaccine practices of health providers in six rural clinics that are part of South Texas Rural Health Services, Inc., in Dimmit, LaSalle, Frio and Medina counties in South Texas.

They will use what they learn to create a bilingual program to improve health care workers’ timely provision of the HPV vaccine to adolescent patients.

They also will bring in two bilingual-bicultural community health works (promotoras) to reach out to local residents to increase the HPV vaccine initiation and completion rates among adolescents.

“It’s important for parents to know that the vaccine is the primary means of preventing HPV,” Parra-Medina said. “The only way it will work is if we immunize before there’s any chance that the child has had exposure.”

Join our #SaludTues Tweetchat 1p ET 11/24/2015: Un Latino Thanksgiving Muy Healthy

Latinos, we love to spend time with family and friends—hence Thanksgiving is one of the most important holidays for Latinos in the U.S.#SaludTues-thanksgiving (2)

Many Latino families combine the traditional Thanksgiving dishes like turkey and pecan pie with popular Latino specialties such as tamales, pozole and empanadas.

Unfortunately, diabetes and cardiovascular disease affect the Latino community in big numbers and for this reason is important that we make healthy choices this holiday season.

Join #SaludTues this Tuesday, Nov.24, 1 pm ET–we’ll be sharing healthy recipes and ideas to have a muy healthy Latino Thanksgiving dinner.

  • WHAT: #SaludTuesTweetchat: “Un Latino Thanksgiving Muy Healthy”
  • DATE: Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2015
  • TIME: 1-2 p.m. ET (Noon-1 p.m. CT)
  • WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues
  • HOST: @SaludToday
  • CO-HOSTS: QueMeansWhat (@QueMeansWhat)); American Heart Association (@AHA_Vida)

Be sure to use the hashtag #SaludTues to follow the conversation on Twitter and share your strategies, stories, and resources for healthier foods & healthier marketing. Also, don’t forget to follow @SaludToday@AHA_Vida and @QueMeansWhat.

#SaludTues is a weekly Tweetchat about Latino health and building a culture of health every Tuesday at 12p CST/1p ET hosted by @SaludToday, the Latino health social media campaign by the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR) at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

Spanish Campaign: Tackling COPD among Latinos

The rising U.S. Latino population makes it important to help educate this group about the nation’s third-leading cause of death: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

That’s why the American College of Chest Physicians (CHEST), in collaboration with Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., and AstraZeneca, launched Tome Un Respiro, the first Spanish-language campaign to raise awareness among Latinos about COPD prevalence, treatment, and disease management.COPDInfographEnglish

Nearly one of two cases of COPD goes undiagnosed, according to CHEST.

“Raising awareness of the signs and symptoms of COPD is critical, said Dr. Michael A. Campos, Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and Chief, Pulmonary Section at the Miami Veterans Affairs Medical Center. “Currently, people with COPD within the [Latino] community visit the emergency room at twice the rate of [non-Latinos]. Facilitating earlier diagnosis and routine treatment may help ensure improved quality of life and help patients, families, and caregivers understand and manage the condition.”

The Tome Un Respiro website offers Spanish-language resources and tools related to disease management, as well as information on causes, treatments and access to caregiver resources.

Visit Tome Un Respiro for more information.

Study: Men Eat More When Women Are Around

New research shows men eat more when they’re in the presence of women than when they’re in the presence of men, Fox News reports.

Filipino Rix Francisco eats pizza as he attempts to break the world record for the fastest time to eat a 12-inch pizza in Makati in the Philippines on April 12, 2015. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

Filipino Rix Francisco eats pizza as he attempts to break the world record for the fastest time to eat a 12-inch pizza in Makati in the Philippines on April 12, 2015. (AP Photo/Aaron Favila)

A study from Cornell University published in the journal Evolutionary Psychological Science, found that, of 105 men they followed, 93% ate more pizza and 86% more salad when with women than with men.

“Overeating is a way of using body language to say, I have so much energy that I can afford to engage in some specific kind of risky or altruistic activity,” lead researcher Kevin Kniffin at Cornell University told Live Science, while other studies show similar trends of men engaging in riskier behaviors in front of women than men.

But researchers say this behavior is not necessarily a turn-on for women.

In fact, women who “ate roughly the same regardless of the gender of their company, reported feeling that they overate and were rushed when dining with men.”

“These findings suggest that men tend to overeat to show off—you can also see this tendency in eating competitions, which almost always have mostly male participants,” Kniffin said.

New Model Helps Better Predict Breast Cancer in Latinas

A new risk-prediction breast cancer model based entirely on data from Latino women provides a more accurate assessment of Latina women’s risk of developing breast cancer than existing models.

The model presented at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) used data from the San Francisco Bay Area Breast Cancer Study, “focused on 1,086 Latina women with breast cancer and 1,411 without breast cancer cancer.”

“Currently, there is no breast cancer risk-prediction model for Hispanic women,” said Matthew P. Banegas, PhD, MPH, investigator with Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research in Portland, Oregon, and primary author of the study. “We developed a model based on data on ethnicity, nativity, and breast cancer risk factors, as well as incidence and mortality rates in Hispanic women, which allowed us to create a more specific tool to predict their risk of developing invasive breast cancer.”

What are the factors incorporated into the new prediction model?

  • A woman’s age at first full-term pregnancy: Women who have children at younger ages tend to have a lower risk of breast cancer. Studies show that Hispanic women born outside the United States tend to start having children at a younger age than Hispanic women born in the United States.
  • A woman’s age at first menstrual period: The younger a woman is when she starts menstruating, the greater her lifetime exposure to estrogen, which has been shown to increase breast cancer risk. Prior research has shown that Hispanic women born outside the United States may be older when they start menstruating than Hispanic women born in the United States.
  • Having had a biopsy for benign breast disease: Breast cancer risk is increased among women with benign breast disease. In the risk-prediction model, the risk associated with this factor was slightly greater for Hispanic women born outside the United States than for Hispanic women born in the United States.
  • Family history of breast cancer in first-degree relatives: Women with a family history of breast cancer have a higher risk of developing breast cancer. Prior studies show that Hispanic women born outside the United States are less likely to have a family history of breast cancer compared with Hispanic women born in the United States.

The model is currently  more applicable to Latinas in the Bay Area, but according to Benegas once more researchers around the country collect more data from Hispanic women that data will be incorporated into the model to make it more accurate.

5 Best Ways for Diabetics to Maintain a Healthy Mouth

SaludToday Guest Blogger
Jefferson Dental Clinics

Latinos are 1.6 times more likely than Whites to be diagnosed with diabetes.

That’s bad news for Latino health throughout the body—including the mouth, as diabetics are at higher risk of gum disease and tooth loss.

“The mouth connects to health throughout the body,” said Dr. Leslie Townsend, regional dental director for Jefferson Dental Clinics. “Numerous illnesses show symptoms in the mouth first; and life-threatening diseases like heart disease, stroke and kidney disease are all connected to poor oral health. Without control, diabetes patients risk serious long-term effects on their whole health.”

Here’s the problem: diabetes results in high glucose levels in the saliva. Elevated blood sugar levels fuel the bacteria that produces acid that erodes tooth enamel. Diabetes also reduces your body’s ability to fight infection and increases its levels of inflammation, both of which affect the gums and soft tissues of the mouth.

As a result, those with inadequate control of blood sugar develop periodontal disease more frequently and severely, and lose more teeth due to inability to fight infection.

Townsend suggests five oral health tips for diabetics:

Monitor signs of gum disease. Symptoms include: red, swollen and tender gums; bleeding gums; receding gum line; persistent bad breath; bad taste in the mouth, pus between the teeth and gums; shifting teeth or change in how teeth fit together when you bite; changes in how partial dentures fit.

Keep up with your daily oral health routine. Brush twice daily brushing, floss, and rinse with an antiseptic mouthwash.

Visit your dentist every six months for a regular exam, x-rays and cleaning, or immediately if you notice signs of gum disease. This is a time to screen for potential issues and learn how to control the oral effects of diabetes.

Monitor and control your blood sugar. A controlled blood sugar helps regulate the sugar in the mouth, thereby reducing the risk of tooth decay and gum infections.

Stay hydrated. Diabetes can impair the salivary functions of the mouth, allowing bacteria to grow uncontrolled for a longer period.

“Good oral health is integral for maintaining good health overall,” Townsend said. “Your dentist can be a life line in detecting and controlling fatal diseases and their outcomes, before it’s too late.”

Babies Born with Syphilis on the Rise in the US

Between 2012 and 2014, new cases of congenital syphilis increased by a whopping 38%, Univision News reports.

In a new report, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reveals that this is the highest rate of new syphilis cases in a decade.

Babies born with congenital syphilis face a greater risk of serious health conditions, such as brain damage.

According to the authors of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the disease was found in 11.6 out of 100,000 births in 2014 compared to 8.8 in 2012.

The report also reveals all ethnic and racial groups showed an increased in new cases, especially among Whites (61%) compared to Latinas and African Americans (39% and 19%). However,  Latina and African American mothers gave birth to more babies infected than White mothers.

Menos fumadores en EE.UU

Mas Estado Unidenses fuman menos este año a comparación del 2014, reporta Latin Times.iStock_000016582443_Large-Copy-1024x621

En un reciente estudio por la CDC solo el 15.2% de los adultos fuman de forma regular a comparación de 16.8% en el 2014.

“Los latinos (10.4%) fuman menos que los blancos(17.1%) o que afroamericanos (18.1%).”

Entre las personas de la segunda edad solamente el 7.5% reporto fumar regularmente.

En 2009, los índices de fumadores regulares eran mucho mas altos (20.6%) lo que demuestra que el numero de personas que fuman todos los días ha bajado en los últimos seis años.

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