July 14, 2014 

Laughs for kids -- and adults

n On which side does a chicken have the most feathers?

On the outside.

n What invention allows you to see through walls?

A window.

n What is a pie in the sky?

A flying pizza.

n What did the mother elephant say to the baby elephant when it misbehaved?

"Tusk, tusk!"

-- McClatchy-Tribune News Service


How to be good and gutsy

In the 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympics, when an injured Kerri Strug stuck her famous one-leg landing from the vault (her other ankle was badly twisted in a previous round) to clinch a gold medal, she proved just how gutsy great athletes can be.

Now researchers actually have gone and probed athletes' guts to discover what goes on in there -- and they've found that all that exercise (plus a diet with lean protein and fiber-rich fruits and veggies) builds a super-healthy mix of intestinal bacteria, essential for regulating blood sugar, keeping the immune system strong and protecting you from cancer and other chronic diseases.

Testing a team of Irish rugby players, researchers found that the athletes had an abundance of a bacteria -- A. muciniphila -- scrumming in the mucus lining of their intestines; it's known to help prevent obesity and diabetes. Seems that exercise is good for you, in part, because it helps promote a positive environment for your gut bacteria. And you don't need to join a rugby club to get the benefits.

Gut-friendly activity: We suggest you aim for 10,000 steps a day or the equivalent (1 minute of aerobics equals 100 steps), and 20-30 minutes two to three times a week of strength-building, using stretch bands or hand weights.

Gut-lovin' diet: Lean protein from skinless poultry and fish such as salmon, plus fiber-rich PREbiotics (that's what makes good probiotics thrive), found in bananas, asparagus, onions, garlic, dandelion greens, Jerusalem artichokes, jicama, barley, berries, tomatoes, honey, flaxseed, beans and pectin-containing apples. Now you're good and gutsy.

-- Dr. Michael Roizen and Dr. Mehmet Oz

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