Children’s Health News You Can Use

The Effects of Violent Television on Kids

As a child, my parents insisted their four kids pick one main television show per week to watch and supplement it with educational TV. So the local PBS station was usually on when I was a wee one. The older we became, we were not allowed to watch anything racy, violent or something which dealt with adult topics. But TV in the 70’s and 80’s was a lot different than it is now. My brother chose shows like “Star Trek” and my sister and I chose shows like “Little House on the Prairie”. These were good shows for kids to watch.

A 2011 study showed that pre-schoolers watched about 4.1 hours of television and other screen activities daily. What they watch is as important as what they eat. In another study just recently published, children who were allowed to watch anything they wanted tended more toward aggressiveness, yelling to get what they wanted and had poor social skills. Parents in the group were given age-appropriate viewing guidelines and reported that the children showed more empathy, were less aggressive and had better socialization skills when watching suitable programs to enjoy. While it may be easy to plunk a child down on the couch and turn the TV on to keep them occupied, it is better to take the time and watch television with them. What an adult thinks is funny content can be completely in- appropriate for a pre-school age child.

Taxes on Sodas May Lesson Child Obesity

Most Americans do not like the idea of government sticking their nose in to our pantries and refrigerators. The state of New York has somehow passed some laws which ban super-sized sodas in the movie theaters and the ones sold on the street. In California, a recent poll showed that the vast majority of respondents were opposed to the same kind of tax. Yet, when it was mentioned that the tax money would go toward health and fitness in the schools more than half supported it. This tells us that we think, as adults, it is okay to be overweight and choose less healthy food and barely get any exercise, but it is not for our children. Additionally, the city of Oakland, California gave bags of fresh fruit and vegetables to 15 families last year and about half of the children in those families lost or maintained weight.

Making Health Food Choices Accessible

The lack of grocery stores and even small community markets in lower income neighborhoods is a part of the problem. Retailers do not want to open in possibly crime prone areas. Some small stores in these places barely carry fresh fruit and or other healthy food and snacks. These businesses are where school age children stop to and from school to get something to eat. In some cities, local non-profits are supplying fresh fruit and incentives for small businesses to give to kids, and seem to be working. These are smart improvements in areas where none might otherwise be done.

They Need to Know as They Grow

There are many programs on TV today which are specifically geared to children which teach them something they need to know as they grow. Kids may find adult comedies funny, and especially the young ones, do not have the cognitive skills needed to understand what they are watching. Put aside time to watch television with little ones and ask them questions about what they are watching to see if they understand it.

Personally, there was never a Twinkie, a bag of Doritos or a six-pack of soda in my parent’s house. An after school snack was an apple or some pretzels. As an adult who moved out on her own after college graduation, I dove into those goodies and quickly gained weight. Thinking back – moderation is a better way to go. An unhealthy snack every now and then would not hurt. But a diet which includes junk food on a regular basis promotes a lifetime of poor health and eventual obesity. A bag of apples costs a little bit less than a bag of cookies.

App Fog Genius Lessons From A Successful Entrepreneur

App Fog Business Startup Lessons from a Lucrative Entrepreneur

Lucas Carlson is a successful startup entrepreneur. When he first started however, he made a few bad choices that almost cost him big time.

Don’t Skip Business Setup Planning

At first he was just programming an idea for App Fog. He didn’t have a landing page, any bank account, brain storming ideas, or thinking about the ideal customers. Skipping key steps really put him back for years. He would program for weeks, and then finish the app idea. Then program for weeks and finish the idea. He couldn’t get people interested in the idea that was created.

Creating a Landing Page

Finally, he decided to create a landing page one night when he was too tired to sleep or even tell his wife about the programming idea. The app idea was PHP Fog. He tried putting it up on a site before that called Heroku.com. He registered the PHP Fog website and just simply wrote “it’s like Heroku for PHP”. Heroku’s site only allowed for Rudy on Rails applications so he couldn’t put the applications on that site.

Living the Dream

The next morning he woke up and had eight hundred people on his website! He didn’t market it anywhere else. All he did was put one link on Hacker News network. Also, he described the website in more depth. It turned out that the idea was a “hair on fire” idea without even the creation of the project! This gave him assurance that if the effort is put in, the results will be desired. After programming for two weeks. he just only had a prototype and the traffic went from 800 to 4,000 unique visitors per day!

Hair on Fire Problem Equals Confidence

He had identified a “hair on fire” problem. This gave him confidence to program the solution. This changed his life forever! He realized the difference between having a problem that people know they have versus the problems that people don’t know they have. PHP Fog wound up being AppFog. It raised $10 billion dollars and was later bought out.

No Marketing Expenses

He didn’t spend a dime on marketing! It wasn’t an accident. People already wanted the idea and were looking for it. He learned that he could find what people already wanted and then program an application based on what they wanted. He wasn’t taking a “shot in the dark” anymore.

Don’t be Intimidated

Creating a landing page or micro-website is very scary for most people. They don’t want to know if others like their great idea or not. There is a denial psychological part to this way of thinking. It can be self-defeating to the creation of an idea. They will think “Well I believe in the idea so much, that I don’t care what other people think about it”. This philosophy will kill a great idea. Put your “right foot first” and see what people need.

The Brain Health News That You Can Use

What’s the brain health news for today? Well, the winner of the 2008 USA Memory Championship was recently announced. His name is Chester Santos and he can memorize a deck of cards in three minutes, learn 100 random words and 100 new names and faces in just 15 minutes. How does he do it? That’s his secret. He’s willing to teach you, for a price, of course. He recently quit his software job to teach his memory training techniques full time. According to the Associated Press, the brain fitness software market was worth $225 million in 2007, more than doubling the receipts from 2005.

Due in part to Nintendo’s release of the “Brain-Age game” and now the second version of that game, the industry’s income is expected to grow again and again over the next several years. By 2015, analysts expect to see the industry take in billions of dollars.

Want more of the brain health news for today? While the majority of the games and puzzles target aging baby boomers, teenagers and college students are also getting into brain exercises.

Some teachers are using the techniques to improve their student’s ability to remember facts, dates, names, etc. It is estimated that the K-12 market accounted for $60 million worth of the earnings in 2007.

Will any of these techniques help you, specifically? There’s a bit of a question mark on that. While some techniques work for some people, they don’t necessarily work for everyone.

All that you have to do is read a few software reviews to see that. Some people love the games and teasers. Others are not impressed.

In May of 2008, the brain health news was all about the introduction of Posit Science’s new “cognitive behavioral training”. If you took any psychology classes, that term may bring to mind names like Pavlov and B. F. Skinner, whose techniques were not always pleasant.

But, the term actually encompasses a broad range of behavioral therapies that relieve conditions such as depression, anxiety and even schizophrenia. It is common today to rely on mood altering drugs for those conditions, but when cognitive therapies are combined with drug therapy, the results are always more positive.

Posit Science’s program is rather expensive at $395, but it does combine a kind of personalized program with regular assessments for effectiveness. Instead of a single exercise, the program includes a variety of techniques aimed at improving memory, multi-tasking abilities and mental clarity.

In August of 2008, the brain health news from the Washington Post was a little different. While many of us are exciting about the growing number of available options, some experts warn that consumers may be just as well off to save their money.

The Nintendo game, for example, is very inexpensive and the teasers range from a kind of “rock-paper-scissors” to telling time on an upside down clock. Researchers have shown that video games improve a person’s cognitive function, but only when the volunteers were “non-players”.

Well, that’s it for the brain health news of today. The experts all agree that the best advice is to never stop looking for new challenges.