Category Archives: Engage

A Healthy Spin on Latkes: The “No-tato” Pancake

by on November 21, 2014

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Traditional potato latkes are delicious but more and more people are looking for healthier ways to make these wonderful fried patties.  We’ve come up with a recipe that is heavier on protein and veggies and light on the carbs.  And, as a bonus, they taste great! Enjoy!

Quinoa & Veggie Latkes Recipe

INGREDIENTS:

3 cup cooked quinoa (use 1 part quinoa to 1 part water)
1/2 cup grated onion (about 1/2 medium onion)
1 cup each finely grated zucchini and carrot
1/4 cup potato starch
1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 eggs, beaten well
Canola or grapeseed oil for frying

1. In a large bowl, place the cooked quinoa, onion, grated vegetables, potato starch, and salt and pepper. Mix well. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired. Add beaten eggs mix in.

2. Add 3 tablesppons of oil to an 8-inch saute pan. Warm over a medium/high flame until oil is hot, but not smoking.

3. Using a 1/4 cup, scoop the quinoa mixture and carefully place into the hot oil. Press latkes down with a spatula to flatten out evenly, then cook undisturbed for about 4 minutes (the patties will firm up as they cook). When the edges are crisp and brown, flip the patties over and continue cooking the other sides until golden.

4. Place the latkes on the prepared plate with paper towels. Let latkes sit on paper towel for a few minutes to allow any excess oil to drain.

5. Serve warm.

Once cooled, the latkes will keep for up to 2 monthes in the freezer.

 

In Search Of Sleep

by on November 4, 2014

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But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep.”  Robert Frost

A relative of mine, Stewart, (not his real name) was driving home from LA, and fell asleep at the wheel. Stewart was 18 years old at the time, and on winter break from college. He drove to LA in the morning, and then, after spending the day there, drove home that night. Although he knew he was drowsy, he made the decision to drive home. The last thing he remembered was listening to a 49er Monday night football game before he dozed off without warning. His new 1996 Toyota Corolla was totaled when the car crashed into a barrier on the side of the highway as he was going at least 65 mph. The front of the car ended up at the windshield.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that drowsy driving results in 1550 deaths, 71,000 injuries, and 100,000 accidents each year. Younger drivers, age 16-24, are almost twice as likely to be involved in a drowsy driving crash compared to drivers age 40-59. Stewart was not unusual in that 55% of drivers who report falling asleep did so while driving on a high speed divided highway.

Often we take our need for sleep for granted, but getting sufficient sleep is as vital to our health as getting enough exercise and eating properly. In more immediate terms, lack of sleep can impair judgment, affect mood, decrease the ability to retain information, and increase the risk of accidents. In the long run, lack of sleep can lead to increased risk for obesity, diabetes, and heart problems. For example, if a person with high blood pressure has a single night of poor sleep, this can lead to high blood pressure throughout the following day- which, if it persists on a daily basis, can adversely affect the heart. Likewise, a single night of poor sleep can make a person irritable the next day, and chronic lack of sleep has been correlated with depression and anxiety.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, here are some healthy sleep tips which should become habits:

  1. Stick to the same bedtime and wake up time even on weekends.
  2. Practice a relaxing bedtime ritual.
  3. Avoid naps, especially in the afternoon.
  4. Exercise daily, but not at the expense of your sleep!
  5. Create a comfortable sleep environment. Room temperature should be between 60-67 degrees, free from noise, and free from any light.
  6. Sleep on a comfortable mattress and use comfortable pillows.
  7.  Manage your circadian rhythms by avoiding bright light in the evening and seeking sunlight in the morning.
  8. Avoid alcohol, tobacco, and heavy meals in the evening. Also, try to avoid caffeine late in the day. (In my patients whom I treat for chronic insomnia, I recommend eliminating caffeine entirely.)
  9.  Spend the last hour before bedtime doing a calming activity such as reading. If you are having trouble sleeping, avoid electronics such as laptops before bedtime or during the middle of the night.
  10.  If you can’t sleep, go into another room and do something relaxing until you feel tired. The common adage is to use your bed only for sleep or sex.

Stewart survived the car crash and ended up only with a bloody nose when the air bag deployed and punched him in his face. He had a friend in the front passenger seat who survived despite not wearing a seat belt because his airbag kept him from flying through the windshield. Stewart was ticketed by Highway Patrol for trying to pass someone on the right side of the highway where there was no actual lane. The officer had not realized that Stewart had simply fallen asleep. What did Stewart learn from this experience? “Rest before driving, switch off drivers, and take your time.”

Don’t let poor sleep affect your health or lead to serious injury. Getting enough sleep should be a priority in your life, not an afterthought as you try to accomplish everything else you want to do. Unlike Robert Frost, reject the attitude of “miles to go” before you sleep.

For more information about sleep and health, go to the National Sleep Foundation.

Jerry Saliman, MD is a volunteer internist at Samaritan House Medical Clinic in San Mateo. He retired from Kaiser South San Francisco after working there more than 30 years. While at Kaiser SSF, Dr. Saliman was also Chief of Patient Education. He received the 2012 “Lifetime Achievement Award” given by the Kaiser SSF Medical Staff.

Editing acknowledgement: Ellen Saliman

Neither the PJCC or our guest columnists provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Please make your health care decisions in partnership with your health care provider.

 

Pink & Powerful

by on October 21, 2014

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Everyone is wearing pink to bring attention to a disease that will touch over 280,000 women per year in the US alone.  Odds are high that everyone knows at least one person effected by breast cancer. While fighting and beating cancer is  the main goal when one is diagnosed, there is a long road of rehabilitatation following surgery that is so important to regaining strength and mobility.

In the following video, we hear a few inspirational stories from women who have taken on breast cancer and come out the other side with more strength, courage, and lust for life than before.

The PJCC is doing its part on October 26, 2014 with our Pink Ribbon Day.
We invite the whole community to come and support a great cause.

RESOURCES

Pink Ribbon Program @ PJCC  - Postoperative workout designed to enhance recovery
Check Your Boobies – Dedicated to early detection and prevention

 

 

Hepatitis C – A Stealth Killer

by on October 14, 2014

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I recall my Great Uncle Sidney.  He loved to devour a delicious steak for dinner.   Eventually he had to undergo coronary bypass surgery for cholesterol-clogged arteries of his heart.   Within a decade he died!  His heart did not kill him.  He died of cirrhosis of the liver because of a blood transfusion contaminated with hepatitis C virus which he received during his bypass surgery.

Hepatitis C (HCV) is one of those conditions one hardly hears about because most people who have it don’t know they do.  Of the 3.2 million Americans who have hepatitis C, only 5-6% of them have been successfully treated.   It is 3 times more common than HIV in this country, and it is the leading cause of liver transplantation and liver cancer.  The mortality from HCV has Continue reading

The Baseball Dilemma

by on October 11, 2014

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Hank Greenberg

With the month of October comes the annual race for the pennant. It often coincides with the Jewish New Year and Yom Kippur.  Through the history of baseball Jewish players who find themselves lucky enough to make it to the playoffs have had to make difficult choices between their religious values and their team.  If Yom Kippur happens to fall on the day of a playoff game, it can, and has, ruffled some feathers in the baseball community. Continue reading

Cultivating Good Health

by on October 10, 2014

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Any time is a good time to cultivate good health by developing a wellness plan that will help you flourish. Don’t know where to begin? Draw inspiration from your garden and apply the same concepts to your health.

Preparation
Planning your garden is the first step to its success and the same holds true for your health. Buy a notebook and name it your health journal. Begin by writing down two goals that are attainable and aren’t overwhelming. For example, start preparing your afternoon snacks to bring to work instead of buying from the vending machine. This action alone can save you 200 Continue reading

Sukkot: Traditions of Wonder, Gratitude, & Justice

by on October 2, 2014

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Traditions of Wonder, Gratitude and Justice:
Reflections on Sukkot from the PJCC Garden Manager

‘Among the many things that religious tradition holds in store for us is a legacy of wonder.’ –    Rabbi Abraham Yehoshua Heschel

The fall is a season of abundance in the PJCC garden. Thanks to the hard work and heart of many volunteers, our garden is bursting with greens, tomatoes, squash, peppers, figs and strawberries – to name a few. Beginning my new position as Garden Manager during this rich time of year has given me a lot of joy, especially as it coincides with Sukkot. The holiday offers Continue reading

Homemade Honey & Oats Granola Bars

by on September 12, 2014

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Healthy, Tasty, Portable.  What’s not to like?

Finding a snack that will provide you with energy and is easy to pack and carry isn’t always easy.  Granola Bars fit the bill but can be pricey. This recipe for homemade granola bars will be satisfying and easy on the pocket book!

And, an added bonus, oats are known to lower cholesterol levels, provide fiber in your diet, Continue reading

Rosh Hashanah: May We Be Blessed With A Happy, Healthy, & Peaceful New Year

by on September 11, 2014

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Unlike all the other Jewish Holy Days, Rosh Hashanah, The Jewish New Year, is not linked to the remembrance of national liberation or to the commemoration of a national tragedy. In fact, Rosh Hashanah does not focus on the experience of the Jewish people in history at all. Rather it serves as a lens to examine central universalist themes of Jewish belief and values, such as mortality, change, and meaning, Unlike other holidays, Rosh Hashanah is associated with a mythological moment in time – the creation of the cosmos. The Machzor — prayerbook – for Rosh Hashanah returns to this image again and again with the words Hayom harat OlamToday is the birthday of the world. This is not a story about Jews but a story about humanity. In its most salient formulation, the creation of one world, presupposes one God, and one humanity, which implies that all people are brothers and sisters. This theme of the unification Continue reading

The Meaning of Life – As Seen through The Eyes Of My Patients

by on September 3, 2014

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As we approach the High Holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur this month, I find myself becoming more reflective, particularly about what’s important in my life. Twenty years ago I was asked to complete a biographical survey for a physician newsletter about my personal interests, which included questions such as the latest book I read, my favorite movie, etc. There was one question that stood out, “What is the meaning of life?” My response, “God knows.” It occurred to me a few years later that I could delve into a better understanding of this existential question by probing my patients for their stories about what has been meaningful in their lives. You may wonder how during a 15-20 minute visit with patients I could have time for such a discussion. One cannot come out and say, “Tell me the meaning of your life,” but I felt I could approach the Continue reading