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As another blogger in the health world, I am pleased to announce that Amy Tenderich, the author of DiabetesMine was recently featured on Newsweek.com!

Here is the link to her blog post mentioning all the details.

Amy was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and began writing about her experiences, which has lead to a large following of “patient bloggers” as well as people who can identify with her life. Diabetes is one of my keen interests (especially Type 2 and its prevention) so I’m glad there was some exposure!

Great job Amy!

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Remember when you were in elementary school or middle school and you were given an assignment that you knew was going to smack you upside your head with confusion but you tried anyway?

Right. That’s kind of how I feel about the recent law being passed in New York City forcing fast food chains to display calorie information next to the food items on the menu. The chains being affected are those that have at least 15 separate outlets in operation. So I’m guessing we are looking places like McDonald’s, Burger King and Wendy’s.

State public health officials cracking down on the obesity epidemic and saving the world! Right?

Well….in my opinion, not so much.

Here’s why:

  1. You are going into a fast food restaurant and not HanGawi. Let’s be real here.
  2. By the time you are in that McDonald’s, Wendy’s or Burger King – you have already (most likely) made the conscious decision to get a hamburger, chicken sandwich, chicken nuggets, French fries or a combination of those.
  3. The people coming into the restaurant are not stupid, they’re lazy. Hence the term “fast food”.
  4. Nobody cares about calories when they come here, Exhibit A, Exhibit B and come on, not even the restaurants care! Seriously, did these places lose that much money when Super Size Me came out in theaters?
  5. Finally, how many people know the amount of calories they should be eating in one day? On several of the fast food websites, they include their nutritional information but that’s meainngless if you don’t have context. Ok, the Quad Stacker at BK is going to set me back 1000 calories (yes it will), I might joke about the large number but how is it really going to affect me? If I should be consuming 2,000 calories in one day – that’s half of it gone right there. And that’s just the sandwich folks, you KNOW you usually want to get that whole meal!!

Don’t get me wrong, any steps taken to prevent the obesity rate from increasing is a good thing. And no I don’t have all the solutions but one thing I do want to point our is that we are all responsible for our choices. Rather than throwing some numbers on a menu and hope that people will see it and make sense of it pales in comparison to spending money in school systems and in the workplace to educate people about the wonders of healthy eating.

This is not going to be a quick fix. By a long shot.

Continuing on my interests in online communities, my friend Leslie gave me a heads up on a new destination. KnowMeNow seems to resemble a cross between MySpace, Facebook and a good ole neighborhood barbecue.

Looking around the site and figuring out each facet, really got me thinking about what we identify ourselves with in society. When was the last time you asked one of your friends what their favorite food or movie was? Or even what they would consider to be their biggest accomplishment? KnowMeNow seems to provide the opportunity not only to just connect with people but to really get a glimpse as to who they are. I even took the opportunity to include one of my favorite posts onto my journal page on the website.

And what would a good community be like without a good discussion? Over here there is a conversation started about what new media means to you. I think it’s pretty obvious where I stand on that one. We can have all the geeky tools and new innovations on the Web that we want, but more and more people are realizing that it’s near pointless if it doesn’t have a purpose of getting “real life” things done or making our lives more fulfilled. The social web is now a place for ideas to get put out there and collaboration to take place. The technology doesn’t do it for us, which is why people interaction is the thing I enjoy focusing on.

Now that I’m a part of the Web, there is no looking back!

Have you constantly had CNN on the tube or CNN.com as one of the permanent tabs on your Firefox browser lately? I have!

It’s been a fun ride so far, listening to what the candidates have to say to us as a country as well as to each other while they stand a few feet apart on a stage. After it’s all said and done, we will have another Commander-in-Chief who will lead our nation for 4 years.

Here at Antibio.tech, I try to focus on health issues on the personal and community levels. But when it comes to the nation’s health, that’s a big bear to tackle – it’s no secret that our nation’s health has been declining due to factors such as: obesity-related diseases, increased cardiovascular disease and a host of infectious diseases. However, I want our next President to saddle up, put on some Davy Crockett gear and make that bear say “uncle”!

One of my friends has been working with the UN Foundation here in DC to hold our next leader accountable On Day One of their term (the site is here: www.ondayone.org). The reason I wanted to write about it here is twofold:

  1. Social Media is only as useful as its ability to bring change or action in the real world. Whether it is as simple as connecting with an old friend, or as complex [and important] as getting more young people to vote… social media should be a tool that promotes connections and real life action. As you can see from the On Day One site, their goal is simple and clear: send a message to the President — On DAY ONE — about which topics are the most important to address. Because the UN Foundation is involved with this site, I feel like these messages might actually make it to the Oval Office!
  2. This is exactly the kind of stuff that Antibio.tech is about. Providing a solution and a cure (like antibiotics!). While the On Day One site isn’t trying to be the next glamorous Web 2.0 buzz machine, what it is trying to do is combine Web 2.0 tools with an actual purpose. The icons are pretty well designed and it seems like their beta launch has already brought in some traffic. Good design (check!) and a worthwhile mission (check!) — are you in?

So, readers and social media mavens, what do you think that the President should do On Day One? Should it be about Iraq exit strategies? Women’s Rights? Darfur? Improving out tattered image on the Global Stage? You already know what my interests are…whatever happened to people knowing about the Presidential Health Challenge? Check out On Day One and post your thoughts here/there… let’s show the world that social media is more than just for pajama wearers.

Recently, there was an award ceremony that took place which celebrated and profiled the best startups and web/tech innovations of 2007. The Crunchies – named after the popular TechCrunch website, happened on Friday, January 18th.

Winning for Best New Startup, was a company called iMedix, an online destination that combines the elements of search and a social network to revolutionize the way people find and share health information online.

Tonight, I just signed up for the service to get a better idea of how they operate. Initially, it seems that the sharing facet will make it more of a community than simply a search engine/send email to a friend type of website. I personally think that creating a community in the Health 2.0 world will make a huge difference in how we interact with the information that we do find. Once we get the information, we want to know what others think about it and how it pertains to their lives – as well as our own.

iMedix goes on to mention that they had one thing in mind when creating the site: “the more people use it – the better it gets.

This really gets me motivated to become part of the community. However, another thought that pops into my head is the notion of the wiki and how Wikipedia has come under fire numerous times because of their user-editing process. One thing that I really want to happen with these types of websites is that the content get vetted in a way that random junk isn’t passed around. Sometimes people have different views on what’s healthy and what isn’t – as well as what is correct information found on the Web.

With all that said, I’m happy iMedix and Health 2.0 for that matter, got some spotlight and this can only mean good things for the stuff I’m interested in!

The other day as I was out and about, I was walking past a popular restaraunt and I couldn’t help but overhear a brief interaction with a patron and their (assumed) significant other, as they were entering. Something like this:

Hungry patron: I know it’s not even February yet and I’m already messing up one of my resolutions, but I don’t care right now!

Significantly hungry significant other: I know what you mean…I’m not going to get dessert.

Hungry patron: …yeah right.

Are we giving up already folks?? I know it’s not easy – I’m working through it too!

I’m sure you’ll find one of your favorites in the video. Remember, just do it!

On Sunday, I had the great opportunity to visit the 2008 NBC Health and Fitness Expo at the Convention Center in Washington, DC. This is my third year going (this is the 15th year of the event) to the expo and every time I go, I get blown away at the vendors and the sheer amount of attendees that show up.

According to the NBC 4 website, over 85,000 people showed up to take part in the variety of giveaways, health screenings, and even activities like salsa dancing! The expo was held on Saturday and Sunday but unfortunately I was only able to make the tail end of Sunday – as they say, better late than never right?

As soon as you enter the Washington Convention Center, there were clear signs leading you to the event. When you got to the top of the escalator platform, you got a clear view of what was happening – it was awesome.

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Despite having limited time, I did manage to get around to some great booths. The most interesting exhibit I came across was Mark Marten’s FitClub demo. Mark heads up Pantometrics, a company that develops exercise technology for fitness equipment. As I was walking past his booth, I couldn’t help but notice a young girl on a stationery bike looking at a screen that basically looked like a virtual Tour de France!

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How cool is that?!

I was very impressed and had to stop by and chat with Mark for a few, getting his insight into the product and what motivated him. I’m going to try to get an interview with him so stay tuned for that. This is exactly the kind of innovation that we need to be working on in order to merge together popular technology and the benefit of healthy living!

As the event began to wind down, I got the impression that thousands of people left the facility a little more enlightened about staying healthy and became aware of the different organizations in the area that are devoted to ensuring that it stays that way. Next year I hope to visit the expo on both days and cover more events.

There was an article I found on the NBC 4 website that highlighted a man who said that the event saved his life. Here is a snippet:

…A 61-year-old Maryland man said if not for free medical screenings he received at NBC4’s Health and Fitness Expo about eight years ago, he might have died.

Banjo player Frank Cassel said he knew his health was in jeopardy, but he hadn’t seen a doctor. He went to the Health and Fitness Expo, where medical experts performed a battery of tests for free.

“They found out that all my levels of sugar, cholesterol and triglycerides were all severely elevated,” Cassel said…Cassel was diagnosed with uncontrolled Type 2 diabetes. That diagnosis prompted him to make some major changes in his life, like eating healthier to control his diabetes and starting a regular exercise program. Now his blood sugar is under control and his cholesterol is down.

“If I hadn’t gone to the Health Expo and gotten tested, it’s very possible I would have died,” he said. Cassel was so thankful for the Expo that he wrote a song about it…

Amazing. One of the things I was taught while learning about Community Health in college (and that I still hold onto), is that even the smallest success in someone’s life is a huge victory. And as we all know the world is getting smaller, each victory has the potential to spread into larger victories through word of mouth. What if Mr. Cassel decided to sing the praises of the Expo to his family and friends (as you can see, he DID write a song about the event!)? What if they decided to check the Expo out next year or better yet, decided to make some changes in their own lifestyle to promote better health?

Kudos to you NBC and to the rest of you deciding to make small steps to better yourselves.

It’s never too late to start.

*see more pictures from the event here

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Did that rhyme as good in your head as it did in mine? Hope so.

Just wanted to let everyone know that the Social Media Club in DC is having an official meetup/Tweet-up* this Friday.

We’ll be meeting at the Gallery Place-Chinatown movie theater for the 5:00pm viewing of Cloverfield – the movie I personally think looks like a sweet mashup of the movies Signs and War of the Worlds.

I hope the aliens (or whatever they are) get their butts kicked too….on the preview, they knock the head off of the Statue of Liberty (I’m from NYC) – not cool!

Hope you can make it!

*Tweet-up: An in person gathering of local area users of Twitter

Hey folks, this morning my friend Leslie alerted me to a situation brewing in the DC music scene. There is an upcoming show at the Black Cat tomorrow, Jan 16, featuring Yeasayer.

Here is the problem:

The show has already been sold out but only because the band was booked in the smaller room at the Black Cat. Now if they move the show upstairs to the larger room, there would be enough room for at least 300 more tickets!! There are plenty of disappointed fans out there that could still benefit if it gets moved! I don’t know about you but that seems like a win-win situation for both the Black Cat and Yeasayer’s die hard fans!

What you can do:

There is a Facebook page already created where fans of the group (and fans of the way social media drives a cause!) are getting together. The group is growing, so check it out! Also, Leslie, Brian and I are on Twitter to make even more people aware.

Thanks in advance!

**LATEST UPDATE found here 

Thanks for the support folks

NBC Health and Fitness Expo

If you are near the Washington DC area this weekend, be sure to stop by the Washington Convention Center for a huge treat!

This will be the third year I’ve attended the NBC Health and Fitness Expo and let me tell you, these people go all out! I’m particularly happy that there will be free health screenings available for blood pressure, cholesterol, depression, diabetes – among other health issues.

And you know what else? Bill & Jim Germanakos from the Biggest Loser show will be there, along with Dr. Ro (famous nutritionist) and Jared from those Subway commercials (the guy lost 245lbs)! I’m looking forward to getting some pictures snapped and will write about my experience.

If you do attend, don’t hesitate to share with me what you thought and what you did. I would love to hear about it!

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