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New Year’s Resolutions: Enhance your life, don’t deprive yourself

in Community/Health by
Don't forget to eat your veggies in 2019 and beyond. (While not expressly a part of Canada's Food Guide, yes, even humans can eat clover...)

Type “gym membership,” “fitness,”  “diet,” or “smoking cessation” into Google Trends (a very cool online tool) and you’ll see that searches for all of them spike in early January. No coincidence: with a new year many of us resolve to turn over a new leaf, develop good habits and curb bad ones. By the end of January searches for those terms drop off and, unfortunately, by then many New Year’s resolutions are abandoned.

We asked experts in a number of fields for their thoughts. What’s a single piece of advice they’d offer? What’s a resolution that might be manageable and is definitely worth doing? What could help ensure we stick with it?

Here are their suggestions. The areas covered include healthy eating, fitness, substance use and abuse, and the environment.

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Basic Income at Christmas was making life a bit more worth living

in Community/Health/Local News/Poverty Reduction by

OBIP Chronicles — As we approach the holidays, many people who are receiving basic income are, for the first time in a long time, able to buy gifts for loved ones or can afford to do activities with their kids.

Giving is not only good for the soul, as the saying goes, but also one’s physical and emotional health. The evidence is unassailable.

  • In his book Why Good Things Happen to Good People, Stephen Post, a professor of preventative medicine at Stony Brook University in the U.S., reports that giving to others can enhance health benefits in people who are coping with a chronic illness.
  • In a 2006 study by Rachel Piferi of Johns Hopkins University and Kathleen Lawler of the University of Tennessee, giving was shown to even improve physical health and longevity because it decreases stress. People who provided social support to others had lower blood pressure than those in the study who didn’t, suggesting a direct physiological benefit to the power of giving.
  • Generosity is likely to be rewarded by others eventually, sometimes by the person you chose to give to, and sometimes by someone else. Several studies, including work by sociologists Brent Simpson and Robb Willer, have suggested that these exchanges promote a sense of trust and cooperation that strengthens our ties to others. In turn, these strengthened ties have been shown in research to spark positive social interactions, so imperative to good mental and physical health.

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Local Family Health Team saves Urgent Care more than $700,000

in Community/Health by

A costing by the City of Kawartha Lakes Family Health Team has revealed that the team has saved the health care system more than $700,000 since 2014 through its emergency room and after hours clinic diversion programs.

Under these programs, the team’s health care professionals assess whether their care and treatment of the patient in the family health team offices resulted in the patient not having to go to the emergency department or attend local after hours clinics.

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Ensuring mental health throughout the holidays

in Columnists/Community/Health by
Lindsay basic income pilot: Mental health, resilience will surely improve

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. The thermostat slowly drops, snow starts to fall and people are bundling up. Wrapped in their favourite scarves, mittens and toques, people are venturing out into the brisk Canadian winter to take on the day.

Plans are being made for dinners and parties; children are scribbling down hand-written lists with hopes of receiving that one perfect gift. For many, the start of the holiday season means feelings of joy, hope and warmth. For others, it can be a completely different experience.

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The active transportation alternative: 10 great benefits

in Columnists/Community/Health by

So, if we can agree that, as argued in an earlier column, Lindsay is a car-first community, what would be the benefits to us as individuals and as a community of giving pedestrians and cyclists priority — of promoting “active transportation?”

Here are 10 benefits to consider, beginning with health and the environment then moving on to economic and social benefits (the four areas covered by City of Kawartha Lakes Director of Development Services Chris Marshall in a presentation to Council on active transportation– which you can access here).

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Extra funding to help RMH during holiday surge

in Community/Health/Seniors by

The Ross Memorial Hospital (RMH) team is getting another $1,464,000 in one-time funding from the Central East Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) to maintain critical system capacity during the regular holiday/flu surge.

Ross Memorial Hospital has been experiencing higher than normal patient volumes for more than 18 months. Over the Christmas holidays, it’s expected volumes will increase again, requiring the Hospital to open extra beds.

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Ross Memorial will NOT amalgamate with Peterborough Regional Health Centre

in Around Town/Community/Health/Local News/Seniors by

The Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) board has accepted a Ross Memorial Hospital and Peterborough Regional Health Centre decision to not proceed with a proposal to amalgamate the two hospital sites.

“Having examined opportunities for integration over the past six months, the boards of both Ross Memorial Hospital (RMH) and Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) have mutually agreed that, at this time, they will not proceed with the proposal laid out in their June 2018 Directional Plan to integrate the two hospitals into one organization with two sites, a decision accepted by the Board of the Central East Local Health Integration Network (Central East LHIN) at the LHIN’s October 31st Board meeting.

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Woman on basic income opens new business – right beside MPP’s office

in Business/Community/Health/Poverty Reduction by
Woman on basic income opens new business – right beside MPP's office
Karen Suggitt has opened Sew Little Time Emporium beside MPP Laurie Scott's office. Photo: Erin Smith.

A local woman who is on the Ontario Basic Income Pilot in Lindsay, knowing it will end soon, has opened a small fabric business – right beside local MPP Laurie Scott’s office.

Karen Suggitt says when they cancelled the pilot she was just on her second month and “very tense about what would happen.”

She had been gathering fabric-related items while she was working and purchased a small inventory with the little she had in savings and credit. She found some rental space at 6 Lindsay St. N., right beside Lori’s Family Hair Care, and just a couple units away from Scott’s office.

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Basic Income gave recipients the chance to plan ahead

in Columnists/Community/Poverty Reduction/Seniors by

There’s certainly been a large amount of attention paid to the Province’s decision to end the Basic Income Pilot program early next year, rather than seeing the plan through fully to its original three-year time period. As one of three Ontario communities selected for the program, the City of Kawartha Lakes has hundreds of residents currently receiving the guaranteed income payments.

Recently, members of Community Care’s health care team met with two clients who are Basic Income recipients. We heard their stories of how the program was making a bit of a positive difference for them and their families. Their willingness to share their stories was appreciated.

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Lindsay law firm strong supporters of mental health in the workplace

in Around Town/Community/Health/Local News by
Jason Ward and Maria Francis of Wards Lawyers.

There are 17 people at Wards Lawyers in Lindsay and those numbers will soon swell to well over 20. It’s a growing staff, in what is already the second largest law firm in central Ontario. With so many people working in one of the top five most stressful occupations, Jason Ward knew they wanted to be leaders when it came to mental health supports in the workplace.

He and Karissa – who is both his wife and his business partner – created a full time position that is part administration but also Mental Health/First Aid Officer, a certified position through the Kawartha Pine Ridge District Health Unit.

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