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Health: Why The Scale Lies

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“Ah, why have I lost 4 pant sizes, but not a single pound? I’m not lifting  anymore weights. I’m just going to starve myself.” If I had a dime for every time I’ve heard that since we’ve opened 3 years ago, I’d be sitting on a beach in St. John enjoying my retirement as we speak.

The scale lies. It always has and always will. It’s a dieter’s worst enemy. It’s completely ruined perfectly good diets and workouts because the brain-washed dieter didn’t like what she saw and decided to go into starvation mode which further sabotaged her weightloss efforts. For some reason we think “pounds loss’ is the end. We’ve forgot it is “a means to an end” not the end. Smaller jean sizes, fitting into clothes you haven’t fit into for 5 years, looking better in a bathing suit, etc are “ends”, less weight is not.

Why? Because your weight is actually extremely deceiving. What weighs less: a pound of muscle or a pound of fat? Wrong answer. They weigh the same. They both weigh a pound. Now try this one. What takes up less space: a pound of muscle or a pound of fat? Booyah! 1 pound of muscle takes up considerably less space than a pound of fat. That’s why you’ll see a big drop in pant size, but the scale will barely budge. All that fat that you had has vanished, while the muscle that you didn’t have appeared! However, that new muscle is a little more dense so it’s almost as heavy as fat, but takes up far less space.

So why can’t I just drop fat and not add muscle? If you have to ask that question, you don’t have the genetics to be stick figure runway model. Plus, does any guy even find that attractive anymore? Very, very few people in the world have the genetics to be extremely thin, yet healthy at the same time. For 99.9% of the rest of the population, it’s more effective and easier to lose weight while simultaneously gaining muscle. Fat doesn’t burn calories. It just sits there looking disgusting. And worse yet, they’re now finding out that fat may actually release stress-producing chemicals that further wreak havoc on your metabolism. Muscle on the other hand eats calories up, especially after a resistance training session. It craves calories after weights! So even though that scale hasn’t budged but you’ve lost some pant sizes, I can guarantee you that your metabolism is on fire. Plus if you don’t have the genetics to be a stick figure, all starvation does is slows your metabolism down, as well as causing deficiencies in thousands of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients, as well as probably a premature death.

But won’t I get too bulky? Ha, only if your trainer is the same guy who trained Barry Bonds. Women have so little testosterone that you’ll never see striations in your biceps. Those women you see on bodybuilding competitions – steroids, perfect diets, perfect workout routines, and diuretics. Muscle actually makes you appear thinner, even though the scale won’t agree. Plus, muscle in the right areas will actually enhance the hourglass figure that so many women covet. And all of those benefits are strictly superficial. I won’t even get into the health benefits – lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, less insulin resistance, less joint pain, etc, etc, etc.

So what can you do? All it takes is two days a week of resistance training and two days a week of cardio-type training (walking, running, biking, etc). Out bootcamp is a perfect solution to the resistance training. Those classes work your entire body, from head to toe, and provide just enough resistance to help build a little muscle. The other two days, go walk, run, or bike for 30-60 minutes. The weather is getting beautiful. Enjoy it! And remember, you can’t out train a bad diet…. Don’t make your diet complicated. Just reduce your calories a little. Stop eating so many carbs and replace those calories with lean meats, fruits, and veggies. And don’t drink your calories.

Now get out there, grab a pair of dumbbells, and build a little muscle.

-Ageless staff

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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Domestic violence is prevalent in Macoupin County

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Dear Editor,

Domestic Violence within Macoupin County is prevalent. It is destructive and can be both physical and psychological. It can affect anyone of any age, gender, race, or sexual orientation. It may include behaviors meant to scare, physically harm, or control a partner. While every relationship is different – domestic violence generally involves an unequal power dynamic in which one partner tries to assert control over the other in a variety of ways. The following statistics are all according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

We can see domestic violence inside the home: through the use and control of household pets. In one study, 85% of survivors who experienced co-occurring animal abuse reported that the behavior of their pets had changed. An even higher percentage of survivors who reported partners had harmed or killed their pet, have also reported their partner for domestic violence. We can also see an increase usage of firearms within the intimate partner violence home. A survey of contacts by the National Domestic Violence Hotline found (of those with access to firearms):  

  • 10% said their abusers had fired a gun during an argument.  
  • 67% believed their abusers were capable of killing them. 

We can see domestic violence inside our schools: as partner violence is not exclusive to the home. There are many instances of violence between dating partners that begin in high school. Nearly 1.5 million high school students in the United States are physically abused by dating partners every year. Within those relationships, 13.4% of male high school students report being physically or sexually abused by a dating partner.  

We can see domestic violence inside our community: Macoupin County provides a specific set of needs for those victims and survivors of domestic violence. There are several complex concerns within a violent relationship that come to light once action has been taken. Safe Families sees a few main re-occurring concerns within the county:  

  • Survivors have fewer financial resources, making them more financially dependent on an abusive partner.  
  • The lack of rental units or other affordable housing options makes it more difficult for survivors to leave spouses or co-habiting abusers.  

The Macoupin County Safe Families program provides support for residents as they journey the emotional endeavors to leave behind domestic violence. As a contributor to that experience, we will be hosting a Domestic Violence Awareness Walk on October 7th on the Carlinville Square. An event shirt will be included with a ticket sale. The online tickets will close 09/29 at 5pm. Tickets will be sold at 9am day-of event at the Safe Families booth. More information about the Awareness Walk can be found on our website at mcphd@mcphd.net. We urge Macoupin County residents to join us and rally against domestic violence together.  

Juliet Wooldridge and Lilly Booth

Domestic Violence Advocate Coordinators
Community Health Worker
Macoupin County Safe Families

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Letters to the Editor

Letter: National Health Center Week is week of August 6

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Dear Editor,

Community Health Centers are the backbone of our nation’s primary health care system. We design innovative, integrated primary care based on what services communities need most — ensuring access to affordable, quality healthcare for over 30 million people. In addition to creating jobs and saving lives, collectively we save American taxpayers $24 billion a year in health care costs by preventing and managing chronic diseases.

Community Health Centers are not ordinary medical clinics; we are also problem-solvers who reach beyond the exam room to care for the whole person by providing access to necessities like food, transportation, and housing. Community Health Centers care for everyone, regardless of insurance status. Nationwide during hurricanes, floods, and fires, and locally during the pandemic, Community Health Centers are first on the scene and are vital to keeping America healthy.

The 2023 theme of National Health Center Week is ‘The Roadmap to a Stronger America.’ Community Health Centers serve as the beacon of strength, service, and care in their communities. In moments of pain and loss, we offer support and love. In moments of triumph, we offer hope and a vision for the future. This year’s National Health Center Week theme takes us on a virtual road trip across America, highlighting the achievements and amazing work being done at Community Health Centers in every state and territory. Celebrate the uniqueness of our community and get to know others as we journey across the U.S. together!

Each day of National Health Center Week is dedicated to a particular focus area. We will be working with community partners to recognize and celebrate each of the following focus groups in our community.

As part of National Health Center Week 2023, we invite you to support Macoupin Community Health Centers, Inc. to celebrate our mission and accomplishments.

Christy Blank
CEO/Public Health Administrator
Macoupin Community Health Centers, Inc.
Macoupin County Public Health Department

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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Drobney family thanks the community

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To the great people of Macoupin County.

Although several months have past, the family of Bridget Drobney would like to extend their deepest gratitude for the overwhelming love and support that we received during the recent attempt to secure the release of one of Bridget’s rapist/murderers. We are truly grateful for the numerous letters that were written and sent to the Governor of our state, the Illinois Prison Review Board, and the personal outreach to our family; all of which demonstrated your unwavering love and support. Your efforts were instrumental in persuading the Governor and members of the Prison Review Board to deny clemency for Bridget’s murderer.

While it remains a possibility for the individuals involved in Bridget’s kidnapping, rape and murder to annually petition for clemency, The Drobney family takes solace in knowing that the exceptional people of Macoupin County will steadfastly oppose any such requests and stand ready to fight should the matter of clemency arise again. We are particularly grateful to retired Macoupin County State’s Attorney, Vincent Moreth, as well as the current members of the Macoupin County State’s Attorney’s Office, under the leadership of State Attorney, Jordan Garrison. Their unwavering dedication and support was evident as they traveled to Chicago to represent Bridget and the Drobney family during the clemency hearing.

Once again, we express our sincerest appreciation for your profound support and unwavering commitment to justice. Your solidarity has been a source of strength for us during these difficult years. We will keep you in our prayers and will be forever grateful to the people of Macoupin County.

Sincerely,
The Drobney Family

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