Tag Archive | alcohol

Risk Factor

My employer has a website, powered by WebMD, that you can perform a health assessment, take various health challenges, and find recipes and other health information. In fact, they give employees a $150 check for taking the health assessment and performing 2 activities towards a healthier lifestyle. This includes things like smoking cessation, weight loss, exercise, eating so many fruits and vegetables a day for a period of time, and meeting with a health coach.

I had forgotten about the $150 until today so I logged on to my account to indicate that I completed my health challenges. While there, I read “Michele’s Condition Risk Report” for breast cancer and thought their six tips were worth sharing:

  1. Drink wisely.  Alcohol is a major risk factor for breast cancer. Even having one drink a day consistently can increase your risks slightly; drinking more than that can raise your risks substantially.  (Check. I might drink 1-2 a month; and rarely more than 1-2 drinks.)
  2. Get screened. Having a breast exam once a year by a health case professional will ensure that any changes to your breasts are detected early. It went on to specify mammograms, but I’m really on the fence there. I wouldn’t say don’t get them, but I’m not convinced they help — and they may actually cause harm. (But I can still say “check” on this one since I do have the site of my former breasts examined on a regular basis by several doctors.)
  3. Adopt an exercise habit. Moderate exercise reduces your risk. (Um. Check? Not sure if 30 minutes on the treadmill workstation at work counts as moderate… I was doing yoga for a while and need to get back to that.  I’ll give myself a 1/4 point here.)
  4. Stick to a healthy weight. Extra pounds have been linked to higher rates of breast cancer. (Ok, only a 1/2 point on this one. While I’m certainly not horribly overweight, the summer has not been kind to me. Five pounds gained on vacation back in June are refusing to depart, and then there’s the additional 5 I wanted to lose. But still working on this.)
  5. Eat plants. A diet rich in the antioxidants and fiber found in veggies and fruits may lower your risk of cancer. This was my favorite!!  I was so happy to see this on the list.  I thought the word “may” watered it down a bit, but I was still excited!  (BIG check on this one!)
  6. Stay positive. Finding ways to manage stress will boost your immune system, increase your well-being, and may ward off cancer. (While some days are easier than others, I think I’ll give myself a check on this one also!)

So how did you score?

IMDb: Risk Factor (2015)


Last night my husband and I had the privilege of representing my employer at a gala for the new president of my college alma mater.  It was quite an affair, resulting in a new dress for me and tuxedo for David.  I even splurged on make up and manicure!  (By the way, healthy eating has led to lots of compliments on the health of my skin and nails!)

I decided to throw caution to the wind and indulge in all the evening had to offer, even if not everything was a healthy choice.  I indulge so rarely, and I am feeling no guilt whatsoever.  One night and back on the straight and narrow!

My indulgences included a variety of alcoholic beverages:  wine and champagne during cocktail hour and dinner; chocolate mint martinis and Bailey’s coffee after dinner.  They did have some healthy appetizers, including hummus served in shot glasses with sticks of carrot and celery.  I thought that was a great idea, although I wasn’t sure how to eat the remaining hummus after I used up my celery and carrots!

Dinner consisted of food stations featuring a lot of delicious, rich food.  But I indulged myself in lobster mac and cheese, the risotto bar (at least my toppings were healthy), the oyster bar (no raw for me!), the steamed clams, and a delicious salad.  I did not partake of the roast beef (David said it was great) or the scallops bar (I’m allergic).  But I went back to the food stations more than once!

As for dessert:  I enjoyed some creme brulee’ and chocolate / peanut butter buckeyes.  And yes, this is where the Bailey’s coffee and chocolate mint martinis came in!

It really was a lovely evening, and we met a lot of super nice people.  I also got to see a few people who were at the college when I was there (30+ years ago) and that was really cool!



I will be offsetting any excess calories consumed this weekend with my activities of the next two days.  Tomorrow will be “prep day” and Tuesday has a routine colonoscopy on tap.  Good times ahead!


Indulgence (1996) – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0305673/