Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

Kiwanis Club’s annual Holiday Run & Walk for Health at Contra Loma, this Saturday, Dec. 9

Monday, December 4th, 2017

To download the entry form, click here: holiday_run_2017_registration_entry_form

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How Antioch’s elderly can improve their memory

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

Photo by Hermes Rivera

By June Brown   

Antioch’s elderly population is merely 9% and of this figure, 20% are living alone according to SeniorCare.com. Living alone has many implications including loneliness, isolation and even memory problems. While aging is a normal process, there are things that can be done about memory failure. The good news is there are ways to boost memory and for seniors who are living solo, it helps if memory is intact improving quality of life and their safety.

Lifestyle Changes

Who says no one can change bad habits even if already old? For the elderly, now is a great time to think about those lifestyle changes. There are several ways to enhance and improve memory and one of them is to follow healthy diets and exercise.

Eating well-balanced meals, including lots of greens and fruits as well as important omega-3 fatty acids can keep brains alive and healthy. A diet rich in proteins, lean in carbohydrates and low in bad fats helps brain cells which in turn promotes good memory.

Antioch has an abundance of fresh food markets such as Kaiser Permanente Antioch Farmers’ Market, Brentwood and Pittsburg Markets. Eventbrite is a good source of food and drink events in Antioch where seniors can go such as the upcoming Fall Harvest Festival 2017 and the Acorn Workshop.

Studies also validate that exercise and getting into physical movement can reduce sedentary living which can lead to diseases such as heart attacks, high blood pressure or certain types of cancers. If every senior works out at least 150 minutes a week, it would boost memory and thinking skills (Harvard Health Blog, 2014).

Antioch offers many gyms where the elderly can exercise. There are parks for quiet walks and relaxation. Contra Costa Canal Trail and Contra Loma Regional Park & Swimming Lagoon are great places to go for a walk, hike or a swim. There are golf, bowling and skating facilities for sports lovers and active seniors.

Brain Games and Exercises

The brain like any other part of the body needs to work out. Stimulation is part of keeping brain cells healthy and strong. There are many ways older adults can boost brain power and improve memory with simple daily tasks such as reading and doing crossword puzzles.  Playing chess, trying computer games, and learning new things (language, sewing or musical instruments) also help. By being mentally active, the brain remains sharp slowing down its degradation over time or as one ages.

Socialization

Another factor that contributes to memory retention is socialization. Isolation is not a positive thing as it brings depression, anxiety and stress, factors that contribute to memory loss. Meeting new people whether by going to functions, eating together or volunteering at charities prevents negative psychological effects improving mood, memory and cognitive function. There is a correlation between socialization and dementia incidence. The longer the brain stays inactive, the more likely it will stagnate. Social engagement is important to keep it functioning well. It also forces people to respond and the brain to react.

The Antioch Community Center and Southeast Community Center organize activities for older adults to do things together.  They also hold social events on a regular basis. Older adults can also try some of the restaurants that won in the 2017Antioch People’s Awards after a night of bingo. Consider China City for Chinese or go to Celia’s for Mexican. The object is get out more often, meet people and do things together whether it is a haircut at Reign Salon or a massage at Relaxing Station.

Lifestyle changes, brain exercises and socialization are activities that older adults can easily do to improve memory. Enhanced memory also improves the quality of life, something every senior cherishes as the journey continues.

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Antioch schools remain closed Friday due to “extreme poor air quality”

Friday, October 13th, 2017

Air quality in the San Francisco Bay Area showing Antioch in the orange zone as of 7:00 AM, Friday, Oct. 13, 2017. From AIRNow.gov.

The following message was posted on the Antioch Unified School District’s website on Thursday:

“This is Stephanie Anello, Superintendent of the Antioch Unified School District with an important safety announcement. We have been monitoring the air quality throughout the day. Once again, given the extreme poor air quality due to the recent, ongoing wildfires, schools will be closed tomorrow Friday, October 13th. Although the air appeared to be less toxic than predicted today, it is forecasted to be, once again, unhealthy tomorrow. Due to living in the Bay Area, our micro-climates are dynamic and air quality is always changing. Additionally, although some fires may have improved containment levels, this does not necessarily equate to different levels of toxic pollutants in the air that can reach our children. Please know that your child’s safety was the primary factor leading to this decision. Many of our students walk or ride their bike to and from school and will be exposed to the poor air quality even if we were to remain open and shelter in place. We regret any inconvenience this may cause you but, again, your child’s safety is our number one concern.

Thank you, as always, for your continued support of our schools and our District as we work to ensure your child’s health is not compromised in any way.  Our thoughts remain with the victims of this tragedy as well as with the firefighters and other first responders.”

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency website the air quality in the Antioch area is designated with an orange color which is “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups.” It further defines that category as “Members of sensitive groups may experience health effects. The general public is not likely to be affected.”

Allen Payton contributed to this report.

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Antioch Police, DEA to hold prescription drug Take Back Day Oct. 28

Friday, October 13th, 2017

By Corporal D. Pfeiffer #3707, Antioch Police Support Services Bureau

On October 28th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Antioch Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its 14th opportunity in seven years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. Bring your pills for disposal to the Antioch Police Department at 300 L Street, Antioch, CA. (The DEA cannot accept liquids, needles or sharps; only pills or patches). The service is free and anonymous – no questions asked.

Last April, Americans turned in 450 tons (over 900,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at more than 5,000 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,200 of its state and local law enforcement partners. When those results are combined with what was collected in its 13 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 8.1 million pounds (more than 4,050 tons) of pills.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines – flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash – pose potential safety and health hazards.

For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the October 28th Take Back Day event, go to the DEA Diversion website or contact Corporal Pfeiffer of the Antioch Police Department at (925-779-6909).

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Community college district reopens Los Medanos, other campuses in Contra Costa County

Friday, October 13th, 2017

Contra Costa College, Diablo Valley College-Pleasant Hill Campus, Diablo Valley College-San Ramon Campus, Los Medanos College-Pittsburg Campus, Los Medanos College-Brentwood Center, will resume a regular class schedule and student services beginning today, Friday, October 13.  Outdoor sport activities will continue to be limited until further notice, but indoor activities including theater performances will still be held as scheduled.

The weather forecast for this weekend calls for increasing winds that may hamper firefighting efforts and contribute to poor air quality.  We encourage students and staff to continue monitoring email, website and social media over the weekend for any updates.

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Antioch schools closed on Thursday due to poor air quality

Wednesday, October 11th, 2017

According to a message on the Antioch Unified School District’s Facebook page about 6:00 p.m., Wednesday night, “The following autodialer is going out to all parents. It was sent out just a few moments ago so you may not get it immediately.”

“This is Stephanie Anello, Superintendent, with an important safety announcement from the Antioch Unified School District. Given the extreme poor air quality due to the recent, ongoing wildfires, schools will be closed tomorrow. Please know that your child’s safety was the primary factor leading to this decision. Many of our students walk or ride the…ir bike to and from school and will be exposed to the poor air quality even if we were to remain open and shelter in place as we did today. Currently, it is being reported that only three percent of the fires have been contained. Thus, we expect that the air quality will be even more dangerous tomorrow. We regret any inconvenience this may cause you but, again, your child’s safety is our number one concern. At this point school is only closed Thursday, but pending the containment of the fires, we ask that you make a short-term plan for your children should we need to close schools on Friday. We will be in contact with you as soon as possible should that be necessary.

Thank you, as always, for your continued support of our schools and our District as we work to ensure your child’s health is not compromised in any way.”

In addition, the following message was received by Herald Sports Reporter Jesus Cano from an Antioch High School football coach:

 

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McNerney asked to oppose bill to gut restaurant menu health labeling requirements

Monday, September 11th, 2017

By Colin Schwartz, Nutrition Policy Associate, Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI)

On Friday, Aug. 25, Food and Drug Commissioner Scott Gottlieb made it clear that calorie labels on menus are here to stay for all Americans. As Politico put it, “In the era of President Donald Trump’s war on regulations, one Obama-era rule — menu labeling — appears to be surviving.”

Unfortunately, a bill (H.R. 772) is working its way through Congress that would gut these menu labeling requirements, and undo recent progress toward giving Californians the information they need to make healthy choices about what to eat and what to feed their families. Now that the Trump Administration has affirmed it won’t delay menu labeling any further, it’s time for Congress to abandon this misguided effort. We are asking Rep. Jerry McNerney, who represents a portion of Antioch in the House of Representatives, to take a strong stand for informed consumer choice by opposing H.R. 772.

California’s adult and childhood obesity rates have steadily increased every decade since 1990, despite having the fifth lowest adult obesity rate in our nation. The rate also varies by community – currently, 77 percent of Latino adults are obese or overweight. California’s Department of Health Care Services has recognized that despite California’s best efforts, “obesity is clearly a significant driver of health problems and healthcare costs.”

Every Californian should have the information they want and need to choose healthy food for their families. Unfortunately, Congress is intent on curbing the freedom of consumers by denying them basic information about what they are ordering in restaurants. They also seem set on undoing California’s progress by scuttling the menu labeling law through the so-called Common Sense Nutrition Disclosure Act (H.R. 772).Please see the comparison chart by the CSPI below. This bill ignores the reality that our nation’s top 50 restaurant chains have already committed to empowering consumers by including calorie counts at their locations across the country. Additionally, an independent economic analysis already found that the FDA’s decision to delay the enactment of the rule by one-year could already cost consumers an astounding $15 for every $1 saved by industry. Now imagine the damage H.R. 772 could have on consumers and our economy if signed into law.

This bill is contrary to Californians’ preferences. California passed the first state menu labeling law in our nation in 2008 to support and protect consumer choice. Since the signing of the legislation, California-based chains from California Pizza Kitchen to Taco Bell have shown that menu labeling can be accomplished without sacrificing customer satisfaction.

As Adam Russell of Santa Cruz, CA wrote in response to the FDA delaying implementation of the final menu labeling rule: “People deserve to be able to make informed choices.”

We all must remain vigilant not just about congressional efforts, but the FDA’s final guidance on the menu labeling rule later this year to ensure that the consumer-choice spirit of the rule remains intact. Unfortunately, anti-consumer industry groups and some corporate interests are lobbying Congress hard and against public will to deny Americans choice on a host of critical nutrition issues, including this one. It will only get worse now that the FDA didn’t decide in their favor.        

The bill is moving quickly. It has already passed out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee with Rep. McNerney voting in favor of it and is headed to the House floor (and possibly to the Senate) for a vote, possibly this or next week. 

The Center for Science in the Public Interest has been providing advice and advocacy toward a healthier food system since its founding in 1971. They publish Nutrition Action Healthletter and NutritionAction.com and lead action across the country on nutrition, food safety, and health.

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Contra Costa Medical Career College cuts ribbon on new location in Antioch

Saturday, August 26th, 2017

CEO Stacey Orozco (with scissors) celebrates the ribbon cutting of the new location of Contra Costa Medical Career College with Antioch Mayor Sean Wright (in white shirt), other community leaders, Chamber of Commerce leaders and members,, and college staff and students on Friday, Aug. 11, 2017.

By Allen Payton

On Friday, August 11 Antioch community and business leaders, and Chamber of Commerce members joined with Stacey Orozco, CEO of the Contra Costa Medical Career College and her staff and students to cut the ribbon to officially open their new location in Antioch.

The school relocated in town after trying to buy the former AAA building on Auto Center Drive in 2015. (See related article)

Richard Pagano, CEO of the Antioch Chamber of Commerce said, “We’re so happy for you guys with everything you’re doing and everything you’ve accomplished.”

Mayor Sean Wright was also on hand to share his and the City’s congratulations.

“Having taken a tour of this location and seeing how beautiful it is, I’m so excited to see where you are right now,” he stated. “The Lord knows better than we do. I’m glad Antioch got to keep you. So, on behalf of the City of Antioch we have a certificate of appreciation,” which he presented to Orozco.

She then shared her appreciation for the opening of the school in its new location.

“It wouldn’t be what it is without my staff or my family,” Orozco said. “Without my second family this business wouldn’t be in existence.”

A representative of Congressman Jerry McNerney presented certificates of recognition from McNerney and Assemblyman Jim Frazier. A representative of County Supervisor Diane Burgis presented a certificate of recognition, as well.

“We wish you nothing but the best and look forward to see what comes out of it,” Pagano added.

Then Orozco cut the ribbon to cheers from those in attendance.

Now located at 4051 Lone Tree Way at Blue Rock Drive in the Blue Rock Center, the Contra Costa Medical Career College “is a small, private vocational training institution that is fully approved to operate by the California state Bureau for Private Post-secondary Education” which opened in July, 2011 and became fully accredited in May, 2013, according to their website at www.ccmcc.edu. The school offers courses for those who want to become medical assistants, as well as in the areas of surgical technology, pharmacy technology, phlebotomy and more.

For more information call (925) 757-2900 Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. or visit their website or Facebook page.

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