Simon Law Firm March 2019

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march 2019

The Slim Science Behind Fasting Diets

Investigating the Health Trend That’s All the Rage!

If each new year brings with it a new diet plan that promises the world to those who follow it, 2019 is shaping up to be the year of fasting. If you’ve missed the hype, fasting is quite a bit simpler than other nutrition trends like the keto diet or Weight Watchers program. Instead of counting calories or limiting sugars, you just don’t eat. Supporters argue that by putting your body into a “fasting state,” you can shed pounds and damaged internal tissue, increase your energy, promote cellular repair, lower bad cholesterol, and even protect against neurodegenerative diseases, like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Chances are you have a friend or loved one who’s tried out some form of fasting and discovered dramatic benefits. But before everyone starts skipping meals, it’s important to examine the research. Writer Julia Belluz at Vox splits the fasting trend into four categories. The first, “intermittent fasting,” cuts out or drastically limits your calorie intake intermittently. For example, thousands of people follow the popular “5:2 diet,” during which you eat normally on weekdays but consume less than 500 calories on Saturday and Sunday. Second is the “time-restricted feeding,” where you only eat during a four- to six-hour window each day — followers usually skip breakfast or dinner. The third category is “periodic fasts.” With this diet, extreme fasters abstain from food for several days, opting for calorie-free fluids instead. Finally, there is the “fasting mimicking diet,” which involves intaking highly limited, plant-

based calories for several days each month. People who use this technique like it because they believe they get the benefits of fasting without missing out on key nutrients. The underlying philosophy behind fasting for weight loss is pretty self-evident — if you don’t eat for periods at a time, you’re bound to burn off some weight. But proponents say the diet’s success can be attributed to more complex factors as well. They argue that as the human race shifted from hunter-gatherers to world-conquering agriculturalists, we left our evolutionary path. Before crops existed, we weren’t wired to eat three square meals every single day. Instead, we made do with what we could find, often fasting for days at a time out of necessity. regarding disease prevention and longevity. Autophagy, the process by which the body eliminates and replaces damaged cells, is believed to accelerate during intermittent fasting. As the thinking goes, the faulty cells die first during fasting, enabling the stem cells to start regenerating key tissues. The science backs up some of these claims, but there are a few issues regarding fasting research. Most of the research behind fasting doesn’t examine its effect on weight loss, and most of it comes from animal trials, not human trials. Though there are a few human trials on fasting that show it can improve health, they In addition, some researchers who advocate fasting point to the benefits it can offer

have very small sample sizes, and there is not enough data to be conclusive.

It’s worth noting that fasting to lose weight can be an extremely difficult strategy to stick to, and according to one literature review, as many as 40 percent of fasters drop out of the diet. Furthermore, at least one study indicates that fasting is not superior to the average calorie-counting diets. In short, fasting is promising, but the data is inconclusive. It may help you live longer and fight off disease, but it is also notoriously tricky. The average dieter is just as well off with regular calorie counting, especially if you’re not looking to get too intense with your diet plan. Before you start skipping dinner every day, visit your doctor. If they say fasting is right for you, go for it. Just because the jury is still out doesn’t mean you can’t reap the benefits of the trend — just go into it with a healthy attitude, be safe, and understand that fasting is not magic.

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Donate With Care THE RIGHTWAY TO DONATE AFTER SPRING-CLEANING

Spring is in the air, and it’s time to celebrate with another round of spring-cleaning. Banish the clutter and make room in your life for something new! Many charities see a sharp increase in donations as spring-cleaning season starts. Donating your used books, kids’ toys, and gently worn clothing allows your old items to have a second life. However, when filling that donation box, make sure you’re donating each item because it can do good and not just because you feel bad about throwing it away. Charities have a big problem with well-meaning citizens dropping off items that are better left in the trash. There are many items charities simply cannot handle. Most charities will have lists of items they can and cannot accept on their websites. Some items that you should not donate include:

Personal care items, like soap, shampoo, or makeup

• • • •

Mattresses

Carpets

Tangled cords or phone chargers Any broken, damaged, or dirty items

These items may be unsafe to sell, costly to ship, or impossible to refurbish effectively. When a charity regularly receives items they cannot use, they have to spend hours of manpower sorting through things that end up in the trash anyway. This process can be expensive for organizations with already- strained resources. Some local charities spend over $1,000 a year on dumpster and trash removal fees for unusable donations. While charities will have no choice but to throw unusable donations in the trash, there are services you can use to make your spring- cleaning eco-friendly, even for items you can’t donate. For example, if you have torn or stained blue jeans, reach out to Blue Jeans

Go Green. This program keeps denim out of landfills by turning it into insulation. And while Goodwill can’t take your batteries or old flip phone, you can check out Call2Recycle.org to learn how to safely recycle your e-waste.

• • • •

Expired medications

Old TVs

Cribs

Your donations can be a big help to local charities. Just don’t “donate” your garbage.

Loose remote controls

4 Rainy Day Activities

ENJOY YOURSELF!

Get Bakin’ A wet and chilly day is an excellent

watch some of the classics, like “Forrest Gump” or “Singing in the Rain,” fill the day with “The Lord of the Rings” series, or start a new Netflix show. If you want to involve your kids in the binge-watching, you can let them pick out one of their favorite movies too. Piece Together a Puzzle A rainy day is a great opportunity to pull out a puzzle. You can also grab your friends or family members and make the puzzle a team activity. With the whole day ahead of you, you’ll have several hours to devote to one of your favorite hobbies. Don’t let the rain keep you down! Instead, take advantage of the weather and enjoy a cozy day at home.

opportunity to warm yourself up with some baked goods. Bake your favorite snickerdoodle cookies or fudge brownies, and pour yourself a mug full of hot chocolate or cider to get through the stormy day. Read a Book If you have a bookshelf full of novels you’ve not cracked open, a rainy day is the perfect time to jump in. Settle down on the sofa with a cuddly blanket and enjoy some uninterrupted reading. The rain smattering against your windows creates the perfect background noise to delve into the pages of a new adventure. Create Your Own Film Festival Having a movie or TV series marathon is another great way to pass the time. You can

A s the weather warms up, the urge to get out of the house becomes stronger. However, any plans you might have can be abruptly canceled due to rain. If you find yourself stuck inside for the day, here are a few activities to keep you occupied.

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WORD SEARCH

THE CURIOUS CASE OF THE DISAPPEARING FLAGS An Inside Job

Theft is a serious matter, made even more grave when the victims are fallen war heroes. Such was the situation that stumped police in Hudson, New York, in 2012. The crime was first committed in July of the previous year. Flags had been placed around the graves of soldiers in Cedar Park Cemetery — only to go missing right around Independence Day. Veterans groups and locals were outraged and mystified by the crime. Some worried that a hate group was to blame, as the missing flags had adorned the graves of Jewish soldiers. Veterans worked to replace the flags, one by one, and right the wrong. No culprit was found, and the community moved on — until the following July, when the mystery repeated itself. Like the year before, flags were placed on veterans’ graves in honor of Independence Day, and again, they went missing sometime in the night, this time taken from the graves of African American Civil War soldiers. Cemetery caretaker and veteran Vincent Wallace was appalled, as was the rest of his community. “I just can’t comprehend the mindset that would allow someone to do this,” Wallace said. Determined to find out who was to blame, police put up surveillance cameras and recorded the goings-on in the cemetery. As they watched the tapes, sure enough, they saw one of the culprits sitting atop a gravestone with an empty flagpole in front of him. It was a groundhog.

Ash Birds Day Fat

Lamb Leprechaun Lion

Rainbow Shamrock Spring Tuesday Wednesday

March Mardi Parade Patricks

Flowers Forward Gras

Asparagus & Avocado Soup

Apparently, the wooden flagpoles attract groundhogs, something other groundskeepers have experienced as well.

This hearty soup is the perfect meal for those late winter days when you think spring will never come. It can be made vegetarian by substituting vegetable broth for the chicken stock.

“I’m glad we don’t have someone who has taken it upon themselves to desecrate the stones and the flags in front of them,” said Hudson mayor Bill Hallenbeck. “We can all rest a little easier knowing that it was a critter and not a human defacing our flags, especially those of the veterans,” added Hudson’s police commissioner.

INGREDIENTS

Turns out Punxsutawney Phil has some very naughty cousins — ones who aren’t subject to the law.

12 ounces asparagus

1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and cubed

1 tablespoon olive oil

Juice of 1/2 lemon

2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon ghee or coconut oil

2 cups chicken stock

Salt and pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS 1. Heat oven to 425 F. 2. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toss asparagus and garlic with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast for 10 minutes. 3. Transfer asparagus to blender. Add remaining ingredients and puree until smooth. 4. Season to taste and serve.

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The Skinny on Fasting Diets 1 Why Charities Hate Spring-Cleaning Don’t Let the Rain Dampen Your Spirits 2 Asparagus and Avocado Soup

The Curious Case of the Disappearing Flags 3 Celebrate Dr. Seuss 4

1 Book, 2 Book

WHOWASTHEODORGEISEL?

On March 2, Read Across America Day is celebrated by students, teachers, and community members in towns throughout the country. They chose that date to pay homage to one of the most beloved children’s authors who was born that day: Theodor Geisel. That name may sound unfamiliar to you, but “Dr. Seuss” should ring a few bells. His name alone is so associated with literacy that in 2007, the author of an article in U.S. News & World Report that chronicled the history of 1957 — the year “The Cat in the Hat” was published — wrote, “Greece had Zeus — America has Seuss.” In 2001, Publisher’s Weekly released a list of the bestselling hardcover children’s books of all time in the U.S. Of the books in the top 100, Seuss authored 16, which is more than any other author on the list by a long shot.

But Seuss did not break into the children’s literature industry easily.

Seuss and his nearly 50 children’s books almost never got off the ground. His first children’s book, “And to Think I Saw It on Mulberry Street,” was denied by more than a dozen publishers. Legend has it that Seuss was on his way home to burn the manuscript when he ran into an old friend who suggested another publisher. The rest is history. Given the enthusiasm for reading Dr. Seuss has fostered in children for the past eight decades, it’s no wonder the National Education Association chose his birthday to mark a day dedicated to celebrating reading. After all, he’s often quoted as saying, “You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read with a child.”

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