The internet has been a buzz with talk of conspiracy, genetically-modified foods, contamination, restrictions on organic farming, and backyard gardens being banned. Recent recalls and contamination of peanut butter, pistachios, spinach, and tomatoes and concerns about outbreaks of bird flu and mad cow disease seem to be driving three pieces of legislation that have been proposed and referred to committees. It has been suggested that these contamination events were stunts to ease the way for these freedom-restricting bills. Others suggest that the terminology used for organic products and food labels do need some clarification. The fear and outcry seem to result from the vague and confusing nature of the legislation.
With names like the Tracing and Recalling Agricultural Contamination Everywhere Act, the Food and Drug Administration Globalization Act, the Food Safety and Tracking Improvement Act, and the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2009 it’s no wonder there is confusion about what is and is not being regulated, to what extent, and by who. After reading through HR 875, the proposed bill most likely to come to a vote, I can testify that there is not much more clarity to be found in the actual legislation than there is in all the alarmist blogs and email forwarding. (more…)
Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels wants Hoosiers to take the initiative to eat healthier, stop smoking, and get more active. INShape Indiana is the result of this initiative, linking Hoosiers to the resources and challenges available throughout the state that encourage healthier choices. Because I believe physical health and mental health are intrinsically tied together, I have chosen to partner with INShape Indiana. Technically this partnership means that I give a discount to INShape members, but I have become quite the INShape cheerleader.
A few weeks ago, while unsuspecting students were eating, chatting, and studying at the IUPUI Campus Center food court, INShape members were plotting a surprise to remind them that there is always time to fit physical activity into your day. (more…)
In just under seven weeks, I will be running the Indianapolis Mini-Marathon for the second time. Part of the events leading up to the Indianapolis 500 each year, the Mini-Marathon is the largest half-marathon and the fifth largest running event in the United States. It is a major event for Indianapolis, including participants from all over the world, across age brackets, and of all speeds. I have fast new shoes and I am running more days than I’m not. I obviously have running on the brain. We write about the health benefits of running frequently, but there are several mental health benefits also.
1. Run when you are feeling angry or frustrated to burn off the extra energy. Research has shown that nothing relieves stress more than physical exercise.
2. Running increases endorphins which contributes to a general sense of well-being and mood elevation, so running can make you feel better when you are sad. (more…)