Wake-up Workout

Leg Stretch in Bed

Before getting out of bed in the morning, try straight-leg ankle circles. They’ll help get your blood going after sleeping.

  1. While lying on you back, straighten one leg up in the air. Hold the back of your thigh with your hands and feel a stretch in your hamstring muscles, in the back of your upper thigh.
  2. After holding the stretch for 10 to 30 seconds, rotate your ankles so that your foot moves clockwise in the air. Do 10 circles, than 10 more counter-clockwise. Switch and repeat on the opposite leg.

Source: The Globe and Mail

What’s for Lunch?

New Year Bento

The Menu

  • Shredded Fish and Vegetable
  • Fish and Millet
  • Chopped Burdock
  • Herring Roes
  • Fish Sausage
  • Mashed Sweet Potato with Sweetened Chestnut
  • Lotus Root
  • Black Beans
  • Simmered Vegetables
  • Rolled Omelette with Fish
  • Fried Egg
  • Carrot Wrapped with Seaweed
  • Miso Matsukaze (a savoury confectionery)
  • Small Dried Sardines Cooked in Seasoned Soy Sauce
  • Dessert – Plum Cake

Easy, At-Home Exercise Program Can Help Cancer Patients

It has been known for some time that exercise is important for cancer patients, but few studies have looked at the practicality of exercise programs and whether even a minimal workout can help. Exercise can reduce cancer-related fatigue, improve sleep, boost a sense of wellness, and reduce the recurrence of certain types of tumors. A Mayo Clinic study published in the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management found that a brief, at-home exercise program — dubbed the Rapid, Easy, Strength Training program, or REST, — was sufficient to increase cancer patients’ mobility and reduce fatigue.

“We talk a lot about how important it is for cancer patients to exercise, but until now, nobody has questioned whether less may be more for patients negotiating the demands of cancer treatment,” says lead author Andrea Cheville, M.D., of the Mayo Clinic Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. “This was the first trial to investigate what’s feasible and helpful for patients with limited time and energy.”

An interdisciplinary team of Mayo Clinic researchers developed an at-home exercise regimen, involving a pedometer-based walking program and a series of gentle resistance movements — lifts and curls using a resistance band — that can be done standing or seated. The workout takes only a few minutes a day, with minimal cost to patients.

In a randomized, controlled study of 66 adults with stage IV lung or colorectal cancer, researchers found that patients who exercised at least four times a week for two months showed improved mobility, had less fatigue and slept better when compared with those who didn’t exercise. Though other measures such as pain were unaffected, the study suggests that the exercises can address several important disabling effects of disease and that even patients with late-stage cancer are able to perform the brief regimens.

The exercise program and study have significant implications for cancer care, Dr. Cheville says. Other studies have suggested that cancer-related exercise programs may impose financial burdens; patients can learn the REST regimen in a single physical therapy session. A muscle-building exercise regimen may help patients at all stages of cancer treatment.

“Muscles may atrophy during cancer care,” Dr. Cheville adds. “Our regimen preserves muscle mass so that if patients develop complications from cancer or treatment, or require hospitalization, they have the reserves necessary to ensure that their bodies heal.”

Source: Mayo Clinic

Appetizer of Sautéed Shrimp


24 large shrimp, peeled and deveined with tail on
1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter
1 large bunch spinach, washed, trimmed and chopped
Salt and pepper to taste


3 medium tomatoes, diced
1 small shallot, finely diced
1 stalk celery, finely diced
1/4 cup Clamato juice
1 tbsp vodka
1 red chili, finely chopped
1 tbsp lime juice
1tsp chopped cilantro
4 chives, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Combine all salsa ingredients. Transfer 1/3 to a food processor and pulse several times. Combine well with the remaining mixture. Season to taste. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet, sauté garlic for about 2 to 3 minutes over medium heat. Add shrimp and sauté about 2 to 3 minutes, or until shrimp are opaque and pink. Remove from heat and season to taste. Set aside.
  3. Heat butter in skillet over medium heat. Cook spinach in three batches quickly for several seconds until just wilted. Remove to serving plates and season with salt and pepper to taste. Top with shrimp and salsa to serve.

Makes 8 servings.

Source: GUSTO!

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