Caregivers need some support too
Cheryl Walker
Caregivers are special people to care for love ones, but it is not an easy task. Many caregivers become overwhelmed and stressed to their limit. The Caregivers Support Group can offer help by providing educational programs and a sounding board for caregivers.

The next Caregivers Support Group meeting will from 10-11 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 8 at the Cameron Chamber of Commerce meeting room, 102 E. 1st Street in Cameron. Come have some refreshments with us, discuss your needs and help us plan for support group meetings next year.

We w ill also have a short program on “Taking Care of Yourself” from the Caregivers Helpbook by Legacy Caregiver Services. Carol Gill and Mona Butala work with me to offer programming to support caregivers needs.

Caring for someone is an emotional job that few people understand. The Caregivers Support Group meetings are a time for you to talk about your concerns and get support from others who are caregivers as well as medical professionals. Join us on Dec. 8 for the Caregivers Support Group meeting.

If you need additional information, contact the Texas AgriLife Extension Service-Milam County Office, 100 E. 1st Street in Cameron, 254-697-7045.

EATING HINTS— Each year the holiday season adds a few pounds to our scales. This past week of Thanksgiving meals and the upcoming Christmas gatherings are great times but it can add one or two pounds to our weight. You may not think that one or two pounds is not a bad price to pay for great holiday meals, but think about the 20 to 40 extra pounds after twenty years of holiday eating. The slow upward climb of the scales can add up after a few years.

Unfortunately, holiday menus contribute to the development of poor eating habits and weight gain. We snack more and eat more foods high in sugar (carbohydrates). We overindulge ourselves in the holiday treats.

The reality is that the traditional Thanksgiving and Christmas meals have taken a bad rap over the years but many traditional Thanksgiving and Christmas foods are some of the healthiest around. The Harvard Medical School lists Turkey as among the leanest cuts of meat available.

In fact, a “3-ounce serving of skinless white meat contains 25 grams of fat, and less than 1 gram of saturated fat.” Holiday foods like cranberries, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin are low in fat and calories and packed with potassium and other important vitamins. Also, pecans are a great source of heart-healthy fats.

Still, it is important to keep several things in mind to have a truly healthy holiday meal:

1. Avoid overeating. Portion control rather than stuffing yourself is always a good practice.

2. White meat of turkey is much leaner than the dark (removing the skin decreases the fat).

3. Pumpkin and sweet potato lose many health benefits when mixed with sugar, butter, eggs and cream.

4. Avoid leaving foods out at room temperature for more than two hours.

5. Have small portions of dessert.

6. Slow down and savor your meal. Eating fast often results in eating more.

7. Wait about fifteen minutes to decide if you really have room for seconds. It takes your stomach about 15 to 20 minutes to signal your brain that it is full. If we eat the first and second helping in about 20 minutes, we will probably experience the “over stuffed” feeling.

The key is to eat wisely during the holidays. Enjoy the holidays, just watch the portions and the calories. Working the extra pounds off in January is no fun. For addition information contact the Texas AgriLife Extension Service Milam County Office.

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2010-12-02 digital edition

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