Thursday, March 24, 2011
Fish is a healthy part of your diet

By Dr. Anthony Policastro

One of the things we have found over the years is that people who live in countries with a high fish intake tend to live longer. There are several reasons for this and most are nutritional in nature. The first reason is that fish is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids, which our body cannot produce on its own. Omega-3 fatty acids are found in every kind of fish. However, they are especially high in fatty fish including salmon, tuna (canned light),trout, sardines, sea bass, oysters, crab, perch, shrimp and cod. There are multiple effects of Omega-3 fatty acids and some are cardiac in nature. They can help lower blood pressure, prevent abnormal heart rhythms and reduce the chance of heart disease. Other areas can also be affected. Omega-3 fatty acids can keep brain function healthy by aiding short term memory. There is some research that has shown a decreased chance of Alzheimer's in people who eat at least one serving of fish per week compared to those who never eat fish. There is some evidence that Omega-3 fatty acids can reduce the chance of getting arthritis. Fish is also a low fat food compared to animal meats. The quality of fish protein also seems better than animal meats. Fish are rich in a variety of vitamins. These include riboflavin, which is important in several aspects of metabolism. Fish contain Vitamin D, calcium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, potassium, iodine and magnesium. Some people take all of these things in vitamin supplements but fish is a way to get them naturally. Fish is a good choice for people with diabetes.The high protein supply aids in the regulation of blood sugar. Fish is a good low calorie, high protein choice to assist in weight loss. There are some concerns about mercury levels in fish. For the average individual, it does not appear that this is much of a concern, particularly if the quantity of fish is kept at a reasonable level. The concerns about this being an issue in pregnant women are still being evaluated. Right now, the usual rule is to avoid fish when pregnant. That rule may change. One question often asked is how much fish is the right amount? Most studies have suggested that two servings a week is ideal so when you build your meal plan for the week, this is something to consider. Fish serves us well on a number of levels from a nutritional standpoint. Like any other nutritional item, we need to understand its value and use it accordingly.

Fourth flu death in state Delaware's Division of Public Health reports the fourth flu death statewide of the 2010-2011 flu season occurred March 8 of a 91-year-old woman from New Castle County. The individual had underlying health conditions and had been hospitalized. Certain groups of people are at higher risk of complications from influenza, including people with chronic underlying health conditions such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease, obesity and those who are immune suppressed. Stay informed about the latest developments on the flu by visiting

EMT basic certification class Anyone wanting to enter the field of health care as an Emergency Medical Technician can start this spring with the Basic Certification course offered at Delaware Technical & Community College in Georgetown. The course consists of 120 classroom hours and 60 hours of practical sessions and hands-on learning. It will be held Monday and Wednesday evenings from 6 to 9 p.m. and on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. from May 2 to Aug. 22. The EMT-Basic Certificate Course represents the first response of the emergency medical system. Students will learn basic emergency skills to assess a patient's condition and manage respiratory, cardiac and trauma emergencies. Students are asked to be prepared to care for patients at the scene of an accident and transport patients by ambulance to the hospital under the direction of more highly trained medical personnel. Scheduling ambulance ride-along hours outside of regular class hours is required as are additional Saturday training sessions for course completion. A certification of completion is awarded to those who successfully complete the program and they will be eligible to sit for the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) exam. The course is being taught by William Matthews, owner of Pre-Hospital Interventions (PHI). PHI is recognized as an Emergency Medical Educational entity by the State of Delaware Office of EMS and the Delaware State Fire Commission. For more information, contact Delaware Tech's Corporate & Community Programs at 854-6966.

'Lessons from the Light' workshop Delaware Hospice's Family Support Center will hold a professional workshop, "Lessons from the Light:the Transformative Impact of Near-Death & After-Death Experiences," on Friday, April 15, from 8 a.m. to 4:15 p.m., at the Delaware Hospice Center, 100 Patriots Way, Milford.

Dr. Melvin Morse, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Washington, has studied near-death experiences in children for over 15 years and has authored several books on the subject. He is primarily interested in learning how to use the visions that surround death to heal grief. Admission is $75 for students, $99 for non-students, and is open to the public. For information or reservations, contact Vicki Costa, or 478-5707, ext. 1129. Seats are limited, so early registration is recommended.

Free blood pressure screenings Dr. James Hummel and staff at Nanticoke Chiropractic Center are hosting several events over the next few months to help the community Get "Back" to Better Living. The public is invited to stop by on Friday, March 25, between 9 a.m. and noon, for a free blood pressure screening. Nanticoke Chiropractic Center is located at 415 W. Stein Hwy., Seaford, in front of the Save-A-Lot shopping center. No reservations are needed. For more information, call 628-8706.

Nanticoke offers cholesterol class Nanticoke Memorial Hospital's next cholesterol class is Tuesday, March 29 at 5 p.m. at Nanticoke Memorial Hospital. The class will focus on foods and eating habits that may help to manage your cholesterol levels and will incorporate practical suggestions for overcoming the barriers to eating in a heart healthy way. Topics will include risk factors, saturated, unsaturated fats, trans fats, portion sizes and other American Heart Association guidelines. There is a class fee of $20, and pre-registration is required. For more information and to register, call 629-6611, ext. 2455.

Bereavement luncheons Delaware Hospice's "New Beginnings" bereavement luncheons are an informal way to meet and talk with others, who have had similar loss experiences. Lunch begins at noon and is followed by a brief program. The location rotates each week of the month according to this schedule:
  • 1st Thursday: Grottos Pizza, Rt. 26, Bethany Beach;
  • 2nd Thursday: Georgia House, 300 Delaware Ave., Laurel;
  • 3rd Thursday: Millsboro Pizza Palace, Rt. 113-southbound lane, Millsboro;
  • 4th Thursday: Blue Ocean Grill (formerly Milton House), 200 Broadkill Rd., Milton;
  • 5th Thursday (when applicable): Texas Grill (formerly Ocean Point Grill), 26089 Long Neck Rd., Millsboro. "New Beginnings" luncheons are open to the public. Registration is not required. There is no fee except the cost of your lunch.
For more information, call Carol Dobson or Paul Ganster at 856-7717.

Nanticoke offers CPR classes Nanticoke Memorial Hospital will offer community CPR classes to anyone interested in learning CPR at the Nanticoke Training Center located on Water Street in Seaford. Participants will learn how to perform the basic skills of CPR on adults, children, and infants and how to help an adult, child or infant who is choking. This classroom-based, video and instructor-led CPR course offers families, friends and community members the opportunity to learn CPR and need a course completion card. Classes are open to participants ages 12 and up. This program is specifically designed for those who prefer to learn in a group environment with feedback from an instructor. The target audience is those who have a duty to respond to a cardiac emergency because of job responsibilities or regulatory requirements. Cost is $30. Payment and registration is required by no later than five business days prior to the class. Late registrations (if seating is available) will be an additional $5 fee. To register and to obtain a listing of class dates/times, contact the Nanticoke Memorial Hospital's Training Center office at 629-6611, ext. 8919. Pre-registration is required.

Breast cancer support group Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition, Inc. (DBCC) has expanded its Beginning Your Pink Ribbon Journey, a program for women newly-diagnosed with breast cancer, by partnering with Nanticoke Memorial Hospital Cancer Center in Seaford. The free, monthly program is offered at the Cancer Center located at 801 Middleford Road, Seaford, the third Thursday of each month from 3 to 4 p.m. Of particular value to newly-diagnosed women is DBCC's Peer Mentor Program through which they are paired with a long-term survivor for one-on-one support. To learn more about Beginning Your Pink Ribbon Journey at Nanticoke Memorial Hospital Cancer Center, call Lois Wilkinson at 672-6435. Registration is required and light refreshments and small gifts are provided.