April 2012

Age-well - Happy Easter

"The resurrection gives my life meaning and direction and the opportunity to start over no matter what my circumstances." ~Robert Flatt

Whether you celebrate Easter, Passover or just the end of winter (if you live in the Northern Hemisphere), this time of year comes with the message of hope, new life and new beginnings.

Hope is something we all can identify with, because we all hope for something - a better tomorrow, world peace or a better world for our children to thrive in.

New life is something we see all around us at this time of year in the stirrings of spring after a long, cold winter; the buds and new shoots on the trees, lambs gamboling in the fields and a hint of romance in the air.

In the Christian faith, new beginnings are personified by the resurrection of Christ which gives us hope that death, which is something we all have to face, is not the end, but the beginning of something better.

We all have regrets, something we did in the past which we wish we had done differently. New beginnings are something we all crave. Being able to have the slate wiped clean, to have our errors forgiven and be allowed to start afresh, avoiding our past mistakes and becoming a “better” person, is a desire inherent in the human condition and nourished by most religions.

Although endings always seem a little sad, without them there can be no new beginnings. And past mistakes can be viewed as challenges to overcome - lessons to be learnt - on our path to a brighter future.

I wish each and every one of you a brighter, happier future and much joy at this time of year, no matter what you believe in. Above all believe in yourselves and your ability to make a difference and to create a better tomorrow.

Happy Easter

Easter Quizz

Q: How do you get letter to a bunny?
Q: Why did the Easter egg hide?
Q: Why was the Easter Bunny so upset?
Q: What did the bunny want to do when he grew up?
Q. How do you make a rabbit stew?
Q: What do you call a line of rabbits walking backwards?
Q: Why is a rabbit like a calculator?
Q: Why shouldn’t you tell an Easter egg a good joke?

Answers at foot of page.

Meet Our Authors

A big welcome to Mary Sofia who contributed her first article to age-well on Thyroid Problems.

Mary Sofia worked all her life in the travel and airline industry in various roles, including being leader of TWA trauma team for Italy.

She is also interested in languages, speaks several and has taught English.

For information about Mary Sofia and our other authors, please visit our Author Biographies page.

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New Pages

Michele Botes adds to her section on back problems with an article about Piriformis syndrome which is a little known cause of sciatica which actually does not originate in the back at all.

We’ve started a new section about Snoring Remedies which might be of assistance to people who have this problem or who try to sleep with a snorer. We will add to this periodically as new solutions are invented for this problem. We’re also featuring a section on The Digestive System and have also reorganized a section on Beauty as You Age

Talking about digestion, here is an article about how sugar impacts your health As digestion begins in the mouth, this is a good place to mention our new page on gingivitis treatment as this condition is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults, which obviously we all want to avoid.

As we have not sent out a newsletter for several months, there have been many new pages on the site. Here are somw other examples: Vitamins for Eyes, Top Skin Foods, and Brain Food.

Recipe of the Month

Each month we feature one of the recipes which has been added to our healthy recipes database.

This month's choice by one of our regular contributors, Sue from New York. I chose Sue's contribution as it is for traditional Easter fare.

Hot Cross Buns

A  tasty bread traditionally eaten on the Friday before Easter

Traditionaly eaten on the Friday before Easter

150ml milk
50g butter
Zest of 1 orange
1 clove 2 cardamom pods
400g bread flour
1 packet easy-blend yeast (7g)
125g mixed dried fruit
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
1 egg

1 egg, beaten with a little milk

3 tablespoons plain flour
½ tablespoon caster sugar
2 tablespoons water

1 tablespoon caster sugar
1 tablespoon boiling water

Makes 16 buns

Heat the milk, butter, orange zest, clove and cardamom pods in a saucepan until the butter melts, then leave to infuse. I have gone rather cardamom mad recently, but this short aromatic infusion gives a heavenly scent to the little fruited buns later.

Measure the flour, yeast and dried fruit into a bowl and add the spices. When the infused milk has reached blood temperature take out the clove and cardamom pods, and beat in the egg. Pour this liquid into the bowl of dry ingredients.

Knead the bowl either by hand or with a machine with a dough hook; if it is too dry add a little more warm milk or water. Keep kneading until you have silky, elastic dough, but bear in mind that the dried fruit will stop this from being exactly satin smooth.

Form into a ball and place in a buttered bowl covered with clingfilm, and leave to prove overnight in the fridge.

Preheat the oven to gas mark 7/220C. Take the dough out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature.

Punch the dough down, and knead it again until it is smooth and elastic. Divide into 16 balls and shape into smooth round buns. I wouldn't start worrying unduly about their size: just halve the dough, and keep halving it until it's in eight pieces, and use that piece to make two buns. Or just keep the dough as it is, and pinch off pieces slightly larger than a ping pong ball and hope you end up with 16 or thereabouts. Not that it matters.

Sit the buns on a baking parchment or Bake-O-Glide-lined baking sheet. Make sure they are quite snug together but not touching. Using the back of an ordinary eating knife, score the tops of the buns with the imprint of a cross. Cover with a teatowel and leave to prove again for about 45 minutes - they should have risen and almost joined up.

Brush the buns with an egg wash, and then mix the flour, sugar and water into a smooth, thick paste. Using a teaspoon, dribble two lines over the buns in the indent of the cross, and then bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes.

When the hot cross buns come out of the oven, mix the sugar and boiling water together for the glaze, and brush each hot bun to make them sweet and shiny.

To find and share recipes for healthy meals of all types the Recipe Database Entry Page.

Question: What do you call rabbits that marched in a long Easter parade on a sweltering Spring day? Answer: Hot, cross bunnies.

From the Age-well Forums

Age-well.org has an interactive section which comprises a series of forums, where you can submit your own news items for possible inclusion in this newsletter or exchange views with other readers on a variety of issue, such as osteoporosis and its treatments and share weight loss strategies or beauty tips.

Here is advice from one of our readers, submitted to our Forum on "Strategies for Happiness":

Time Management often is the strategy for Happiness

By Anonymous
from Spain

1. Be thankful for your life and regard every day as a gift from above. Use a mantra to endorse this.

2. Be thankful for everything you have got in the material sense... there are many with nothing.

3. Live for the future that will surely arrive. Be prepared by not wasting what you have been given.

4. Eat and drink sensibly.

5. Exercise your body with a daily routine whenever possible. Use all the components of fitness - Strength, Suppleness, Stamina, Speed.

6. Exercise your mind and develop new skills and learning.

7. Enjoy family and friends by spending time with them whenever possible. Value them and be prepared to compromise when necessary. Facebook does not replace face to face contact. Use the internet when distance prohibits contact. Laugh with them and enjoy them.

8. Be careful of the friends you keep. We are often judged by the company with whom we are seen.

9. Don't get locked into the computer screen. Come up for air on a regular basis. Discipline yourself to get out at least once per day.Don't watch too much TV.

10. Telephone or contact people when you don't need something. Tell people you appreciate them.

11. Take a pride in your appearance and always remember a routine usually stops you being caught on the hop. Personally, I start the day with ablutions and bodily functions, teeth, shower and exercise routine.

12. Learn to multi-task and use this function correctly.

13. Keep a tidy environment. Don't let jobs build up

14. Cut yourself a bit of slack every now and then. Reward periods of austerity with preferred treats

15. Ask for help when you need it

16. Keep money in perspective

Please visit our Age-well Forums to join in.

Answers to Easter Quiz

Q: How do you get letter to a bunny? A: Hare mail.

Q: Why did the Easter egg hide? A: He was a little chicken!

Q: Why was the Easter Bunny so upset? A: He was having a bad hare day!

Q: What did the bunny want to do when he grew up? A:Join the Hare Force.

Q. How do you make a rabbit stew? A:Make it wait for three hours!

Q: What do you call a line of rabbits walking backwards? A: A receding “hareline”.

Q: Why is a rabbit like a calculator? A: They both multiply really fast.

Q: Why shouldn’t you tell an Easter egg a good joke? A: It might crack up!

Till Next Time

We hope you will enjoy this issue. Please feel free to send us your comments , reactions, criticisms and suggestions, so that this news bulletin will evolve over time and fulfill the needs and wishes of our readers.

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Question: A man decided to buy an Easter chick for his little daughter. In the pet shot they showed him two chicks - on was a baby chicken and the other was a baby duck. They were both very cute and he found it hard to make up his mind. In the end he bought the baby chicken. Do you know why?

Answer: The baby chicken, was a little cheeper!

OK, I know the jokes were a bit lame - please go ahead and send me any really funny, short, jokes you would like to share in the next issue. Obviously only absolutely hilarious jokes will be published.

Have a Happy Easter

Keep well till next time.

Mary Treacy
Founder and Editor of Age Well

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