July - September 2010 Edition: Naples Health

F or the healthy aging center, Wegman used deep, rich colors—a background of khaki with accents of coral, blue and green. “What we know about seniors is that their eyes don’t see colors as distinctly as children’s,” she explains. “And the facility is U-shaped. The hallways are all the same, so it can be confusing. We used that palette of three colors to differentiate.” In the SeaCAREium’s hallway mural, bright colors—and life- size underwater creatures—rule. The vibrant, cheery mood is toned down a bit for the patient rooms, but accents still keep things upbeat. The women’s center, by contrast, is done in sooth- ing pastel shades to impart a sense of being at a relaxing spa. The most dramatic changes may be those in the ER wait- ing room. “It was white floors with big red arrows pointing to admitting and pretty much gray walls,” Wegman says. “It was very cold, very scary and very intimidating, So here you are at your highest stress level, and there is nothing comforting.” Wegman changed that by replacing the floors with a warm, wood-colored tile, removing the red arrows, painting the walls cool, calming colors and removing the shades from the win- dows to let in natural light. “It’s not so much that we’re trying to make the hospital be a home but to find a balance,” she says of all her projects. “What calms us is the familiar, so bringing elements of your normal environment into healthcare can have a calming effect. We use the tools we can to make a difference.” And that difference can be as simple as the colors of your world.

Combating cancer with the color of your foods The colors that surround you can have an effect on your mood, but it turns out that the colors of the food you eat can also have an impact on your health. Recent research conducted by Monica Giusti, an assistant

professor of food science at Ohio State University, found that anthocyanin- rich extracts from deeply pigmented fruits and vegetables are potent

cancer fighters. The team extracted the anthocyanin from grapes, radishes, purple corn, chokeberries, bilberries,

purple carrots and elderber- ries, then tested the extracts on

human colon cancer cells

grown in lab dishes. The extracts varied in effectiveness, but all cut cell growth to a measurable degree. Extracts from purple corn and chokeberries were the most potent, stop- ping 100 percent of cell growth and killing almost 20 percent of cancer cells while having little effect on healthy cells. So the next time you shop for food, consider the dark red, blue and purple. You’ll have a tasty, healthy treat that just might lower your cancer risk.

The Cohen lobby of the Jay and Patty Baker Patient Tower is welcoming and comfortable—thanks to the use of color.

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JULY-SEPTEMBER 2010 | Naples Health

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