Wednesday, October 1, 2014
     

Columns

Wednesday, October 1, 2014
KAREN CIMMS/TIMES NEWS Chicken a la George's

When my husband turned 40 I surprised him with a trip to Bar Harbor, Maine, and a coupon for all the lobster he could eat.

While Jim seemed to be attempting to break some kind of lobster-eating record (and it wouldn't surprise me if he did), I don't eat seafood, so we needed to find restaurants with a wider variety.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Q. Are vitamins worth taking?

It's very important to talk with your doctor before you take any vitamin and mineral pills, especially if you take prescription medicines, have any health problems or are elderly. Taking too much of a vitamin or mineral can cause problems with some medical tests or interfere with drugs you're taking.

Vitamins and minerals are "micronutrients" your body needs in small but steady amounts. Your body can't make most micronutrients, so you must get them elsewhere.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014
KAREN CIMMS/TIMES NEWS Weeknight Stroganoff

Just about everyone I know who has school-age children is running themselves ragged about now.

If it's not football or hockey practice, it's dance lessons, Scouts, religion classes, youth groups, not to mention homework.

Summer's carefree days are over!

With all the running around, it's hard to find the time to sit down and eat a meal, let alone cook one. Here's an easy weeknight dinner that takes almost no time to prepare and is ready in just a little more than a half-hour (and most of that is the time it needs to simmer).

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Q. Is it dangerous to take a beta blocker for high blood pressure?

There was one study that found that beta blockers may increase the risk of having a heart attack or stroke if you are using them to treat high blood pressure alone. If you are taking a beta blocker, discuss it with your doctor. Warning: Don't stop taking the drug on your own.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014
KAREN CIMMS/TIMES NEWS Veggie Chili

This week I'm sharing the spotlight with Marlene Urban, who works in our Tamaqua office.

Marlene is sharing her recipe for a delicious chili that includes lots of beans, meat, spices and wait for it cocoa powder! She also shares some fun tips for taming the beast (aka the rabid fan): Good food and plenty of it!

I also have a recipe for chili this week. It's also hearty and flavorful, but unlike Marlene's, this one is vegetarian style.

If you think being a vegetarian means eating nothing but rabbit food, think again.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Q. Do you get more heartburn when you are older?

More than 60 million Americans experience heartburn at least once a month, and more than 15 million Americans experience heartburn daily. Heartburn is more common among the elderly.

Heartburn two or more times weekly may be caused by gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. See a doctor if you have heartburn too often. The doctor can test for GERD.

In the upper GI series, you swallow a liquid barium mixture.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014
KAREN CIMMS/TIMES NEWS Blue Cheese Dressing

As promised last week, in this week's column I'm sharing a recipe for homemade Blue Cheese Dressing.

Rich and tangy, this salad dressing is super simple to make. Drizzle it over some crisp fresh greens and add a few healthy twists from the pepper mill, and you have yourself a winner.

Want to amp up the flavor a bit? Toss on a few extra crumbs of blue cheese.

Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing

6 ounces blue cheese, crumbled

1 pint mayo

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

3 tablespoons chopped chives

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Q. Is it possible to donate your own blood to yourself?

Yes you can. This is called "autologous" blood donation. It's done in the weeks before nonemergency surgery. The blood is stored until the operation. Autologous donation is most often employed in surgery on bones, blood vessels, the urinary tract, and the heart, when the likelihood of transfusion is high. This form of blood donation is good for the patient, but it's beneficial to society, too.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014
KAREN CIMMS/TIMES NEWS Homemade French Salad Dressing is better than anything you can buy in a bottle.

Our "salad days" aren't yet over, so this week and next I'm sharing a couple recipes I adapted from one of my old church cookbooks.

Although I like salad dozens of ways, my favorite is a simple mix of oil and vinegar or lemon juice, and with little more than a pinch of other seasonings.

I simply eyeball it and taste until I like it. It's the way my mother always did it and my kids like it that way as well.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Q. I'm considering having a hip replaced. What are the odds that this operation will work?

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons says joint replacement surgery is successful in more than 9 out of 10 people.

And replacement of a hip or knee lasts at least 20 years in about 80 percent of those who have the surgery.

In the procedure, an arthritic or damaged joint is removed and replaced with an artificial joint called a "prosthesis."