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May 19, 2017     Heritage Florida Jewish News
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PAGE 6B HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, MAY 19, 2017 (StatePoint)--Heart dis- ease and stroke cause one in three deaths among women each year, killing approxi- mately one woman every 80 seconds. While there are many risk factors involved that are beyond one's con- trol, a healthy lifestyle can make a big difference. Here are five healthy hab- its that can reduce your risk for illness. • Move about: Exercise doesn't have to be daunting! Aim for 10-minute sessions, three times daily. Movement sets your metabolism in motion, so make sure it's a consistent part of your life. • Get sleep: Sleeping fewer than seven hours a night can make you gain weight and have more trouble taking it off, according to Columbia University research. Another study found that people who get enough sleep have a five percent higher metabolism than people who don't. That means more calories burned while you're sleep- ing! Doesn't get much easier than that. • Eat small and well: "Studies have found that losing five to 10 percent of your body weight can lower the risk of a heart attack," says Dawn Zier, CEO of Nutri- system and the 2017 Go Red for Women CamPaign chair in Philadelphia, a movement to help end heart disease and stroke in women. Research suggests that eating smaller, balanced meals throughout the day promotes greater weight loss and maintenance, and can also be good for your heart. Schedule meals every two to three hours, six times a day. Programs designed to help you eat healthy portions can mean seeing quick results. • Rise, shine, drink water. You'll burn more calories all day: A German study found that drinking 48 ounces (about six.cups) of cold water increased calorie burn at rest by up to 50 calories per day. This alone could melt a pound in a little more than two months. And drinking it before meals could give you an added bonus, as a Virginia Tech study found that dieters who drank two, eight-ounce glasses of water before meals for 12 weeks lost 36 percent more weight than those who didn't down the water. • Put your phone away: Checking your email in the morning will just stress you out. Many productivity experts recommend waiting at least an hour once you get to work before checking your inbox, so you can tackle your most important priori- ties calmly without getting distracted. Be proactive. Take steps to improve your health and reduce your risk for serious illness. may surprise (StatePoint)--Those fa- miliar with Parkinson's dis- ease (PD) are likely aware of the disorder's most visible symptoms, including slower movements, impaired bal- ance, rigidity/stiffness and involuntary shaking. How- ever, Parkinson's, which is a neurodegenerative brain disorder, can cause a range of non-motor symptoms, which can bring about a new set of challenges for people with Parkinson's and their caregivers. It's important to learn more about these non-motor symptoms, such as hallucina- tions, delusions and mood disorders, so you can be sure to discuss .them with your doctor. 1. Hallucinations. More than half of all people with Parkinson's will experience hallucinations or delusions over the course of their disease. HalIucinations can cadse people to see, hear, or experience things that aren't real. For example, people with Parkinson's commonly report seeing groups of people or animals that in actuality are not there. As hallucinations become • more frequent, people with PD may become unable to distinguish what's real and what's imagined and react to their hallucinations. Hal- lucinations can lead to in- creased patient and caregiver distress, and even nursing home placement. 2. Delusions. Delusions "are false beliefs not sup- ported by evidence, and in people with Parkinson's, delusions often have. para- noid themes. For example, a person with Parkinson's might make accusations about their spouse or some- one else trying to access their life savings. Another common delusion is even a longtime spouse commit- ting adultery. Studies have shown that many experiencing these symptoms are not reporting them to their doctors, pos- sibly due to embarrassment or not understanding that the symptoms are associated with PD and the majority of the discussion is focused on motor symptoms. 3. Cognitive Changes. As explained by the National Parkinson Foundation, prob- lemswith attention, inability to focus on planning, dif- ficulties with memory and language, and personality changes characterize the cognitive changes that can take place over time with PD. 4. Sleep Disorders. A range of sleep disorders are often associated with PD. They include insomnia, restless leg syndrome, talking or moving during sleep and excessive daytime sleepiness. Sleep disorders can impact overall health and well-being. 5. Mood Disorders. Depres- sion, anxiety and irritability can also affect those with PD. In fact, one study showed that up to 40 percent of people with Parkinson's will expe- rience some form of anxiety during the course of their illness. 6. Additional non-motor symptoms. The non-motor symptoms of PD are numer- ous, ranging from vision problems to hypertension to loss of sense of smell. These symptoms can also appear before a PD diagnosis and should be noted. More information about Parkinson's disease and its non-motor symptoms, such as hallucinations and delu- sions, can be found at www. parkinson.org. While there is currently no cure for Parkinson's disease, there are different treatment options, as well as assistive devices, to address motor and non-motor symptoms. When people with Parkinson's and their loved ones report the variety of symptoms that might be associated with the disease, it can help determine what treatment option is best for them. By Gary Marriage Jr. Retirement can open up a whole new way of life for Americans ready to bring their working years to an end, but at least one thing doesn't change. The IRS still keeps awatch- ful eye on your income--in- cluding whatever amount you're pulling from the IRA or 401(k) that you spent decades building into a nice, hefty nest egg. Uncle Sam has been wait- ing for years--possibly de- cades-to tax that money because the deposits you made were pre-tax, mean- ing you weren't taxed on the income you contributed to the accounts. That tax-deferral system works well--until retirement time arrives and you need the money. "When you defer taxes, eventually it catches up with you," says Gary Marriage Jr., CEO of Nature Coast Financial Advisors (www. naturecoastfinanciai.com). "Suddenly, your IRA or 401(k) isn't worth as much as you thought because every with- drawal you make potentially can be taxed." But there's an answer and, with President Donald Trump and Congress looking at tax cuts, now would be the time to take advantage, Marriage says. Those traditional IRA and 401(k) accounts can be con- verted to a Roth IRA, which isn't taxed when withdrawals are made. That doesn't mean you'll avoid the taxes, Mar- riage says, because you'll pay them when you make the con- version. But when you reach retirement, you'll be able to make withdrawals the rest of your life tax free. "Taxes are about to be on sale," Marriage says. "Over the next four to five years, your tax bracket is probably going to be as low as it ever will be." He says some facts worth knowing about Roth conver- sions include: • Space out the conversion. Most people wouldn't want to take the tax hit all at once, and you don't have to. You can transfer the money into a Roth in increments over the course of a few years. So if, for example, you space out the conversion over five years, then the tax is spaced out over five years as well, A few factors determine how much you can convert the first year, but Mar- riage says about 40 percent of the people he has worked with were able to convert half of it in the first year. • The age to do it. A conver- sion can be done regardless of the account holder's age, but Marriage says it's his experi- ence that people 59 to 74 benefit the most. • Start with a Roth if pos- sible. Some employers now offer a Roth 401(k) as an op- tion. Employees should take advantage of that, Marriage says. They won't get to defer their taxes on the portion of their income they contribute to the account, but the inter- est grows tax free and they'll avoid taxes come retirement time. Marriage says he recently did a conversion for a client where he had calculated that if the client lived to be 90, they would have paid nearly $1 million in taxes on IRA withdrawals. "Switching to a Roth low- ered that to $200,000," he says. "I know that still sounds like a lot, but I'd rather pay $200,000 than nearly $1 million." Gary Marriage Jr. is the founder and CEO of Nature Coast Financial Advisors (www.naturecoastfinancial. corn), which educates retirees on how to protect their assets, increase their income and reduce their taxes. Marriage is a national speaker, deliver- ing solutions for pre- retirees, business owners and seniors on the areas affecting their retirement and estates. He is an approved member of the National Ethics Bureau, and has been featured in "America's Top Hometown Financial Advisors 2011" and was selected to contribute to a book with Steve Forbes titled, "SuccessOnomics: Power Principles. "Marriage is also the founder of Operation Veteran Aid, an advocate for war-time veterans and their families. ways semors (StatePoint)--Ifyou signed up for a new Medicare plan during Open Enrollment, it's important to understand how your prescription drug costs may be affected. Even if you did nothing to alter your coverage, some features of your plan may have changed for 2017. Unfortunately, almost one- in-five Medicare beneficiaries don't have a good under- standing of their plan, and a good portion have some misconceptions about copays, according to a recent survey by Walgreens. Here are three easy steps to help you make the most of your benefits and find po- tential cost-savings for your prescription medications under your Part D coverage. Think Generic When possible, consider us- ing a less expensive prescrip- tion drug brand or generic. These alternatives typically carry the same formulas at a reduced cost, saving patients substantially over time. can save Preferred Pharmacies Verify whether your plan has preferred pharmacies-- which are pharmacies that have an agreementwith a Part D plan to charge less than a standard network pharmacy. For example, Walgreens, which is a preferred pharmacy for many of the nation's top plans, can help lower the cost of your copays, even to $0 in the case of Tier 1 generics on certain plans. "Depending on the design of your plan, coverage, and prescription drugs, you can pay higher copays at one pharmacy in comparison to another if your pharmacy is not in your plan's preferred network! So, choosing the right pharmacy is definitely important," says Mariah Moon, the blogger behind "The Simple Parent," who recently wrote about help- ing her mother research her options for lowering her drug costs as part of the #PartDAtWalgreens campaign. 90-Day Refills "My pharmacist told me that many physicians are willing to write 90-day pre- scriptions for many of the medications that seniors are often prescribed. This not only saves time by re- quiring fewer trips to the pharmacy, but also may save copay costs," says Shelley Webb, a registered nurse and founder of "The Intentional Caregiver," who cared for her father in her home for four years and was recently sponsored by Walgreens to share tips about saving on prescription costs with her readers. Medicare beneficiaries seeking help navigating pre- scription drug costs can find free resources at walgreens. com/topic/pharmacy/medi- carepartd. If you didn't review your plan before renewing, it's not too late to become a savvy consumer and learn more. Doing so can help you save money.