Health Buzz: Cancer Tops Heart Disease As No. 1 Killer of U.S. Hispanics

How and why to become a morning person; how to plant a legacy

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Cancer Now Leading Cause of Death Among U.S. Hispanics

Cancer has now topped heart disease as the No. 1 cause of death among U.S. Hispanics, according to an American Cancer Society report released yesterday. Heart disease has been the leading cause of death among Americans for decades, but because heart disease treatments have become increasingly effective, cancer has begun to close the gap. Cancer has already surpassed heart disease among U.S. Hispanics partially because this population as a whole is younger than non-Hispanics, reports the Associated Press, and cancer usually kills people at younger ages than heart disease. In 2009, nearly 30,000 U.S. Hispanics died of cancer, the report says. Writing for CNN, Otis Webb Brawley, chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society, says, "The research indicates that cancer deaths can be prevented and lives saved among Hispanics if we increase use of proven cancer screening tests; make the hepatitis B and human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine more widely available; and reduce tobacco use, alcohol consumption and obesity rates. Indeed, this message could be life-saving for all Americans."

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  • How and Why to Become a Morning Person

    If you are, or ever have been, someone who wakes up early, ready for your workout or morning meditation, then you know about the bliss afforded by fresh daylight. If you're not in on the secret, here's the scoop: Despite the relentless pace and demands of our lives, the early morning hours belong to you. They're sacred. If you want to sleep through them, by all means do—especially if you're a teenager, but we'll get to that. For the rest of us, this window of time can provide the rare, relatively undisturbed opportunity to think, work, plan, and play—helping us to meet our goals, rather than chase them.

    While morning chaos leaves so many of us frazzled and spent before the workday's even begun, highly successful types put this period to precious use—to brainstorm, for example, or exercise, writes author Laura Vanderkam in her new book, What the Most Successful People do Before Breakfast. "Learning to use our mornings well is, in our distracted world, what separates achievement from madness. Before the rest of the world is eating breakfast, the most successful people have already scored daily victories that are advancing them toward the lives they want."

    Studies have found that early risers feel more in control of their lives. Makes sense. We've all planned after-work activities that elude us; it's easy to put off time at the gym after a long day, when we're tired and still have to deal with daily demands like tending to a relative or running an errand before stores close. So it shouldn't come as a surprise that those who exercise in the morning have been found to be more consistent. [Read more: How and Why to Become a Morning Person]

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    • How To Plant A Legacy

      If you're into organic gardening, or interested in learning more about it, thank you. You may not realize how much we need your growing body of knowledge. You see, up until about World War II, just about everyone knew how to grow food in one way or another. It was common knowledge that kids picked up at home and in their communities. But the war, of course, changed American culture. Wartime chemicals and engineering knowledge birthed the industrial farming movement; booming business provided jobs for returning servicemen in cities and factories; more women entered the workforce; convenience foods started taking center-stage on dinner tables; and, of course, television ate up a whole lot more leisure time.

      In short, over the past 60 years or so, traditional food-growing knowledge has skipped two generations and is nearing a third, writes U.S. News blogger Daron (Farmer D) Joffe. Those who have begun gardening are helping to plug this knowledge void. Today's gardeners leave a lasting legacy unlike anything else, helping to return critical, life-sustaining knowledge to humanity. How's that for a satisfying day's work?