Health Buzz: Spanking Linked to Children's Behavior, Vocabulary

7 sins of contact lens wearers; why the Paleo diet works for me

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Study: Spanking is Common and May Negatively Affect Behavioral and Cognitive Development

Punishing children with spankings is still common in many American households, according to a study published today in the Pediatrics journal. Researchers pulled from the Fragile Families and Child Well-Being Study, which covers a birth cohort of about 4,200 children among 20 cities. When the children were age three, and once again when they were five, their mothers and fathers were asked about the frequency at which they spanked their kids in response to misbehavior or acting up. It turned out that 57 percent of mothers and 40 percent of fathers spanked their three-year-old children, and 52 percent of mothers and 33 percent of fathers spanked their five-year-old children. Researchers found that, even at low levels, maternal spanking of children at age five was associated with higher levels of child externalizing behavior by the time they were nine years old. And high levels of paternal spanking when the children were five years old was linked to lower receptive vocabulary scores at age nine.

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  • 7 Sins of Contact Lens Wearers

    Seven a.m. You hit snooze, wake up, get dressed and brush your teeth. You comb your hair, throw in your contacts, slug some coffee and leave for the day. That quick minute devoted to putting in your contacts may seem as routine and insignificant as choosing a travel mug for your coffee. But think about it: You are placing a custom-fitted, doctor-prescribed plastic device on your fragile mucus membrane, likely allowing you to see your best.

    "Give the contact lens respect," says Christine Sindt, an optometrist in Iowa City, Iowa. Contacts are so commonplace and frequently used that we sometimes don't see them as a medical device, she says, although that's exactly what they are. And while she believes contacts are a wonderful invention – if not a luxury – "when things go wrong, they go very, very wrong and can be visually devastating." Think infections, which can range from redness and oozing to vision problems possibly leading to blindness. No thanks. Contact wearers, avoid these common mistakes to maintain healthy eyes and vision.

    1. You don't wash your hands before handling your lenses. Hand washing is the most important step in keeping your contact lenses and eyes healthy, says Sindt, who is also an associate professor of clinical ophthalmology and director of the Contact Lens Service at the University of Iowa. Think about all the germy things you touch throughout the day – countertops, door handles, keyboards. Their microbes will transfer from your fingers to your contact lens and then to your eye. This can cause huge problems for your eyes, like nasty infections that may damage your sight. [Read more: 7 Sins of Contact Lens Wearers]

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    • Why The Paleo Diet Works for Me

      "I will NEVER go Paleo."

      Those are the words I repeated over and over to my CrossFit coach, members in my morning class and anybody else who found success with the highly controversial diet that is a throwback to the Paleolithic days, writes U.S. News blogger Katrina Plyer. "If cavemen had access to corn, potatoes and dairy, they would have eaten it!" I believed every word of what I shared with people.

      A brief introduction to a Paleo lifestyle includes the premise that people must move a lot and eat fruits, vegetables, lean meats, eggs and nuts. It excludes dairy, legumes and the typical Standard American Diet recommendation of several servings of whole grains. There is a lot of food in those three exclusions. The reason behind such exclusions is based on the theory that our bodies were never meant to digest these foods. I often enjoyed a laugh or two at the crazy people who advocated such a diet.

      This laughter came to a screeching halt when my celiac disease symptoms ramped up to life-altering proportions. After eliminating gluten and finding instant relief, I turned my attention to the many highly processed gluten-free products such as corn, potato and rice-based flours, baking goods, pastas and bread. [Read more: Why The Paleo Diet Works for Me]