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May
09
2007

AAD Names Most Sun-smart Cities

People in Washington, D.C., and New York City are the most sun-smart, while those in Chicago are the least, according to an American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) survey of 32 cities or states.

The survey asked residents about their sun protection and tanning knowledge, attitudes and behaviors. Cities or states were ranked based on the percentage of people who scored A's and B's in the survey, which was released Monday.

"Based on our initial review of what people are currently doing, know and believe about sun protection, 35 percent of the national public score above average, with grades of A or B. From here, our goal is to move the needle so that we have 45 percent or even 50 percent starting to score in the A or B range," AAD President Dr. Dianne R. Baker said in a prepared statement.

In Washington, D.C., 47 percent of residents received A's and B's, followed by New York City, Miami, Tampa, and Los Angeles. Chicago was ranked last among the 32 cities or states in the survey, with 21 percent of residents in the Windy City receiving A's and B's.

Others in the bottom five included Maine, Pittsburgh, Seattle, and Cleveland and Minneapolis (tied for No. 27).

About 40 percent of Chicago respondents said they weren't worried about skin cancer because of their short summers.

"The notion that only people living in year-round sunny climates are prone to developing skin cancer is completely untrue," Baker said.

"As dermatologists, we treat skin cancer patients living in all areas of the country -- from big cities to small towns, in tropical climates and snowbelt states. Studies also show that intense, intermittent sun exposure -- which typically involves residents of colder climates vacationing in warm, tropical areas during the winter months -- is a significant risk factor for developing future skin cancers," she said.

The rankings of the 32 metropolitan areas and states are as follows:

  • 1. Washington, DC
  • 2. New York City
  • 3. Miami
  • 4. Tampa
  • 5. Los Angeles
  • 6. Dallas
  • 7. Salt Lake City
  • 8. San Francisco
  • 9. (3-way tie) Atlanta, Idaho and Philadelphia
  • 12. Phoenix
  • 13. Portland
  • 14. Vermont
  • 15. (3-way tie) Baltimore, Boston and Providence
  • 18. (2-way tie) Hartford and Riverside, Calif.
  • 20. Houston
  • 21. (3-way tie) Denver, New Hampshire and St. Louis
  • 24. (2-way tie) Cincinnati and San Diego
  • 26. Detroit
  • 27. (2-way tie) Cleveland and Minneapolis
  • 29. Seattle
  • 30. Pittsburgh
  • 31. Maine
  • 32. Chicago

HealthDay News, May 7, 2007

May
02
2007

Mobile Travel Guide Announces Top Spa 2007 List

Mobile Travel Guide recently announced its Top Spa 2007 list, which is its annual selection of the best in hotel and resort spa experiences in the United States and Canada. These include five-, four- and three-star ratings. Mobil Star ratings consider every aspect of the spa, from the reservation process and check-in to the public areas and locker rooms. Mobil's inspectors examine factors such as courtesy of staff, overall efficiency, guest comfort and convenience, luxury, therapist technical execution/skill and knowledge, and facilty cleanliness/condition.

The two spas to receive a five-star rating from Mobile Travel Guide are Spa at Mandarin Oriental in New York and Spa Montage at Montage Resort in Laguna Beach, California. For a complete list of four- and three-star spas, click here.

Apr
27
2007

Spa Finder magazine Names Top 10 Sleep Spas

Sleep, or rather the lack thereof, has become big news of late – from new studies linking poor sleep to dramatically increased error rates among physicians and air traffic controllers, to emerging reports of the behavioral risks associated with hypnotic-sedative drugs (like Ambien and Lunesta), including “sleep-driving.” In short, it’s becoming increasingly apparent that we, as a society, have a sleeping problem, and that it’s having a major impact on our health, productivity and lives.

The sleep-health connection is an issue that Russell A. Sanna, Ph.D., the executive director of Harvard Medical School’s Division of Sleep Medicine, understands well. According to Sanna, “Medical studies conducted over the past 25 years are clearly showing us that, along with nutrition and exercise, good sleep health is vital to our overall well-being and optimal daily performance, both intellectually and physically.” Given how relatively few people actually enjoy good sleep health, that’s a disturbing assessment. Indeed, according to an online consumer survey by Spa Finder, Inc., sleep deprivation has become the norm, even among Spa Finder’s health-focused web visitors:

 

  • Only 20% of those surveyed say they get at least eight hours of sleep. Twenty-seven percent say they get six hours or less, and 12% say they get five hours or less.
  • Roughly 80% of survey-takers say they have difficulty sleeping – either “frequently” (35%) or “sometimes” (45%); and 65% describe themselves as either “very often” or “sometimes” sleep-deprived.
  • When asked to name the primary cause of their sleep problems, the largest bloc of respondents (44%) cited stress – “it’s just hard to relax, unwind and stop worrying.” Nineteen percent cited an irregular schedule (late-night TV, reading, etc.), and 12% attributed their poor sleep habits to “a busy schedule/not enough time.”
  • Fifty-two percent say they use prescribed and/or over-the-counter sleeping pills/aids – either “frequently” (11%), “sometimes” (15%), or “rarely” (26%).

That final statistic helps explain the 50 million sleeping pill prescriptions that were penned by doctors last year. But there are other ways to address stress, insomnia and poor sleep; and spas, which have historically been on the cutting edge of health, fitness and wellness innovation, are once again playing a leading role. According to Spa Finder, dozens of influential spas are beginning to actively promote sleep health for their clients, both during their stays and when they return home. More and more day spas, for example, are providing post-treatment relaxation rooms where clients can catch a 20-minute nap following a massage. Resort and hotel spas are soothing guests to sleep with aromatherapy, feather beds, meditation/breathing CDs, and other in-room offerings. Numerous medical and destination spas, meanwhile, are offering comprehensive, physician-guided sleep programs featuring overnight sleep evaluations, consultations and cutting-edge treatments including cognitive behavioral therapy and state-of-the-art CPAP treatments. “I commend Spa Finder and the spa industry for their leadership in focusing on the issue of sleep health,” added Dr. Sanna. “In our 24/7 society, the average citizen lacks a basic appreciation of the essential restorative biological functions sleep fulfills for our bodies and minds. That’s why we’re looking forward to working with the spa industry in their educational efforts about this important pillar of health.”

10 spa sleep leaders
The following is Spa Finder’s overviews of 10 sleep leaders in the spa world, including the sleep management treatments and programs they provide for guests.

Red Mountain Spa (St. George, UT) – The spa is currently offering “The zFactor Sleep Skills Workshop,” hosted by safe-sleep author and natural sleep innovator, Robert de Stefano. The program provides practical take-home techniques for creating an ideal body, mind and environment for sleep.

Canyon Ranch (Tucson, AZ and Lenox, MA): Sleep enhancement/insomnia relief programs are run by board-certified physicians and include overnight, in-room polysomnography testing and consultations with behavioral therapists with follow-up recommendations/treatments that include breathing, meditation and/or visualization exercises to help reduce anxiety.

Pritikin Longevity Center and Spa (FL): A complete medical sleep health management program, including comprehensive sleep/fatigue assessments and an in-house sleep specialty program that performs all testing and treatments by the end of the guest's stay.

California Well Being Institute (Westlake CA): A comprehensive sleep health management program featuring a state-of-the-art preventive-care medical clinic with the latest diagnostic radiology equipment and a science-based, luxurious rejuvenation spa. Overnight sleep testing is administered in guests’ Four Seasons rooms.

Chiva-Som, Thailand: Two sleep programs are available. The “Informational” program addresses minor sleeping problems and includes in-depth education, organic supplements and sleep hygiene and relaxation programs. The more comprehensive Natural Insomniac Treatment program (part of the spa’s anti-aging focus) includes a 3-month melatonin program to restore the sleep-wake cycle. TCM and acupuncture are also offered for sleep improvement.

Mayflower Inn and Spa (Washington, CT): The spa’s personalized “Sleep Better, Sleep Well” program teaches healthy sleep habits through stress management, nutrition, hypnotherapy, dream analysis, sleep yoga, “sweet surrender” massage, and an MP3 player loaded with sleep programming.

The Lodge at Woodloch (Hawley, PA): The Lodge is currently launching a "Healthy Sleep Program" (based on meditation and herbs) and offers a large post-treatment relaxation lounge (“The Whisper Lounge”), which is separate from the appointment lounge to encourage post-treatment napping.

Yelo, NY (Midtown Manhattan): A sanctuary spa-like facility dedicated solely to napping and reflexology, promising brief but “cocooning” naps. Sleeping “pods” feature special lighting, sounds and bedding to promote 20- or 40-minute power naps. Pre-nap reflexology treatments are also available. The company describes itself as a corporate wellness center to help stressed workers power-nap in a busy day.

Wellmax Center for Preventative Medicine (La Quinta, CA): This full medical spa at La Quinta Resort offers comprehensive sleep management testing and overnight sleep observation.

Sundara Inn and Spa (Wisconsin Dells, WI): The spa program includes the “Sundara Sleep Experience,” featuring bio-therapeutic massage to treat insomnia, a special sleep-friendly turn-down service (with feather beds, lighting, music, etc), and a range of “Signature Collection Sleep Experience” products to promote healthy sleep at home.

 

Apr
26
2007

AADPRS Reveals Dramatic Rise in Noninvasive Facial Procedures

Board certified facial plastic surgeons are meeting Americans' demands for quicker results and less recovery time, according to a new survey by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS). The annual poll of 1,336 of the organization's member surgeons found that there was a 69% increase among women and an astonishing 91% increase among men undergoing nonsurgical facial plastic surgery since 2000.

We're seeing that minimally invasive-type treatments that offer patients less 'downtime' are increasing in popularity" commented Peter A. Hilger, MD, president of the AAFPRS. "The goal is to have a nice, natural-looking outcome – you don't want to look like you've had surgery. The trend toward non-invasive cosmetic procedures has allowed more Americans to get the look they want without having to turn their busy lifestyles upside down.

Surgeons feel that the future for facial plastic surgery is bright, both for themselves and the consumer. They predict more filler introductions into the market (96%) and feel that patient safety will continue to be a focal point in cosmetic surgery (94%). They also foresee an increase in cosmetic surgery for ethnic populations (85%). "We hope the results of this annual survey give some understanding of the untiring dedication of AAFPRS members to making the highest possible quality of facial plastic surgery available to the public," concluded Dr. Hilger.

Apr
23
2007

Baby Boomers Not as Healthy as Their Parents

Despite more health benefit options available to them than at any time in history, America's Baby Boomers may not be even so healthy as their parents.

The Washington Post reports that as the first wave of Baby Boomers -- a generation of Americans born between 1948 and 1964 -- heads toward retirement, surveys indicate they describe their own health as less than ideal.

As a matter of fact, the Post reports, a major study indicates that Boomers say they have more problems with cholesterol, diabetes, blood pressure and physical exertion than the previous generation born between 1936 and 1941.

"We're seeing some very powerful evidence all pointing to parallel findings," the newspaper quotes Mark Hayward, a sociologist at the University of Texas at Austin, as saying. "The trend seems to be that people are not as healthy as they approach retirement as they were in older generations. It's very disturbing."

One of the primary reasons for the decline in good health, researchers speculate, is that previous generations were much more physically active in their daily routines, the Post reports. The number of Baby Boomers who said they were overweight might be a key to the decline in good health, the newspaper said.

HealthDay News, April 22, 2007

Apr
06
2007

Happy Easter Egg-Decorating Tips From Skin Inc. magazine

Happy Easter from the staff at Skin Inc. magazine! Enjoy these unique tips for egg decorating from Minoo's Aesthetic Institute.

What you need:
6-12 eggs
5 red onion skins
Wild flower leaves of your choice
2 spoons vinegar
Cold water
Large pot
Small towel
Light weight net
Floss 
 
Directions:
Take your wild flower leaves and place around your egg making shapes and patterns. Use net to hold your shapes in place by tying net around flowers and egg tightly. Use floss to tie up net at top. Place a small towel at bottom of your large pot and place your eggs gently in pot, on top of towel so they do not crack. Place your red onion skins in pot with eggs. Pour cold water in pot filling up to where eggs are covered. Turn on heat and boil your eggs for 1 hour. The onion skins will bleed during this process and give your eggs color. Let eggs cool over night. Remove netting and peel of flower leaves. Now your eggs have a beautiful design and color to them!

Mar
26
2007

Spa Week Luxe Awards Honors Top U.S. Spas

The Spa Week Luxe Awards were given out, and among the winners were Westside Medical Spa in Los Angeles for “Best Medical Spa;” Eurasia Spa in Arizona and L’Institut Sothys New York for “Best $50 Spa Week Treatment;” VH Spa for Vitality & Health in Arizona, Red Door 54th Street in New York City and Vida Emanuel Day Spa in Los Angeles for “Best Facial;” Massaggiano—The Massage Spa in Arizona, Regency Spa & Salon in San Diego and Ananda Spa in Philadelphia for “Best Massage;” and VH Spa for Vitality & Health for “Best Overall Spa.”

Keep an eye on www.SkinInc.com to find out how you can enter your spa to win the prestigious Best of the Best Award. Information will be coming soon!

Mar
23
2007

Mandarin Oriental, Miami Debuts Spa Lifestyle Rooms

The Mandarin Oriental, Miami, has debuted 16 spa lifestyle rooms designed to give guests a sense of balance and relaxation with the use of air purification systems, in-room fitness programs, personal lifestyle consultations and spa cuisine offerings. 866-888-6780, momia-reservations@mohg.com

Mar
02
2007

Spring Clean

By Abby Penning

Discover the hot new hues in makeup for this season, mingling shades from the earth with a touch of shimmer.

Feb
12
2007

Albuquerque Named Fittest U.S. City

Albuquerque, N.M. moved from 13th place last year to be named American's fittest city this year in the March issue of Men's Fitness magazine.

The other top 10 in the nonscientific survey of 50 cities are: Seattle; Colorado Springs; Minneapolis; Tucson, Ariz.; Denver; San Francisco; Baltimore; Portland, Ore.; and Honolulu, the Associated Press reported.

The magazine said this year's top 10 fattest cities are: Las Vegas, Nev.; San Antonio, Texas; Miami; Mesa. Ariz.; Los Angeles; Houston; Dallas; El Paso, Texas; Detroit; and San Jose, Calif.

The survey results are based on various lifestyle factors in each city, including the availability of bikes paths or gyms, commute times, fast food restaurants per capita, amount of television watching, along with federal statistics on obesity-related illnesses and injuries.

Magazine editor Neal Boulton told the AP that the list is published each year "to motivate folks to look at the simple things in their lives they can do to be healthy."

HealthDay News, February 9, 2007