Gwen Petersen: In a Sow’s Ear 2-14-11 |

Gwen Petersen: In a Sow’s Ear 2-14-11

If you’re over a certain age, you’ll begin to receive batches of magazines, letters, and e-mail communications purporting to help “heal” you, treat your “condition” – whatever it may be, and give you guidelines to avoid nasty infirmities. And that’s only for starters.

Now, as one who has reached that “golden” state of being, I appreciate the information. While I am still on top of the grass, it’s fairly entertaining to read of the many ways I may one day (and there will come a day) expire, croak, die, kick the bucket, turn up my toes, pass away, pass on, breathe my last, depart this life, go to meet my maker, depart this coil, give up the ghost, conk out, say hello to the Grim Reaper.

Before that day comes, apparently I should be paying attention to the “truly important, practical health information” put out by various centers of assistance. Some of the advice rather puzzles me, but then I have a skeptic’s mindset.

For instance: Four steps to an accurate blood pressure test. What does that mean? Don’t the nurses and doctors who check stuff like that have accuracy skills?

Or how is one supposed to interpret a primary care team can save you lots of money. That presupposes one has money. Also, what is a “primary care team?” (See how uninformed I am?)

I’m told that I can learn what Doctors say about deep breathing, meditation, massage, yoga and other forms of integrative healing. No kidding? Them Doctor fellers and gals sure are smart, ain’t they.

Here’s one I really have to smile about: How to choose which complementary and alternative therapies are right for you. What does that mean? Is that something like wine and hors d’oeuvres at a party?

One bit of advice tells me that falls are a leading cause of hip fractures, and of death and disability among people age 65 and up. The article claims it will give simple steps to help one stay safe and cut the risk of a painful fall. How about that! This morning I unintentionally fell off the haystack. Wonder what the tips to yanking a bale off a stack might be. Maybe something like: 1) Get out of the way. 2) Stand back. 3) Get someone else to do the feeding chores.

Then there’s the leg-puller-pretentious statement: “Aging without getting old: The number one thing you can do to slow the aging process and improve your vitality.” My number one thing is to use a popular brand of hair dye. Number two is to get a pedicure at regular intervals. Number three: At a funeral, I look closely. If it’s not me in that box, I figure I’m good to go for awhile longer.

Aging of the skin – what’s normal, what isn’t and what can be done. I might have to read that one as my complexion resembles an old jute sack left out in the rain and scorched by the sun. On the other hand, maybe that’s “normal”?

Say, look there, this tad of advice tells me how to be safe on a bike while getting some fun exercise. Now that might be something I could use when spring comes and I fire up my motor scooter. Bailout, the Cowdog rides in the sidecar. We both have a lot of fun.

But I do believe the pithy proposition I like best and one I intend to follow until I tip over is: drinking at least three glasses of [adult beverage] a week will have a 76 percent lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s … 76 percent? Hmm, if I increase the dosage, will that lower the risk to 100 percent? I’ll try it out – on a purely experimental basis, you understand – and let you know.

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