Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Breakfast Cereal: The Marketing of Sugar

It’s not often you see an advertisement for Shredded Wheat, All Bran, or low-sugar organic cereals. What you do see, in a very repetitive and aggressive way, are ads for high-sugar, low-fiber content cereals. You know, Trix (Trix are for kids!), Lucky Charms (they’re magically delicious), Corn Pops, and Cap’n Crunch (one of my childhood favorites).

Those Saturday morning cartoons may entertain the kids and even delight a few adults but they also offer up unhealthy choices in the form of commercials. A new study, conducted by the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at Yale University, shows that cereals marketed to our children have 85 percent more sugar, 65 percent less fiber, and 60 percent more sodium, not to mention the additional unnecessary calories that they add to the breakfast bowl.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

FamiliLink: Connecting Families through Technology

In a world where technology is growing faster and more complex by the day, there is bound to be a generation or two that may not be able to keep up with the latest tech trends. Even though I can barely keep up with the ever-changing popularity among social networking sites, touch screen phones, and thousands of mobile applications, my parents can barely text and I can’t even imagine how my grandparents would react if they were still around. For the generations now willing to work with technology in order to stay in touch with family and friends around the globe, a new company has a plan for you.

Declining Money Management Skills May Be Sign of Impending Alzheimer’s

If you’re 30 years old and having trouble managing your finances, it could be a sign you need to rethink your budget and perhaps seek professional guidance to get back on track and strengthen your financial skills. On the other hand, if you’re 65 and suffer from mild memory problems, a decline in your money management skills could signal progression toward Alzheimer’s disease, a new study suggests.

Researchers from the University of Alabama in Birmingham arrived at the conclusion after comparing the money management skills of 87 people with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to 76 people with no memory problems. They measured the participant’s skills at the beginning of the study and again a year later using a tool called the Financial Capacity Instrument (FCI), which looks at preparing and paying bills, understanding a bank statement and balancing a checkbook, identifying fraud situations, counting coins and currency, and buying groceries.