Wellbody Blog

At Professor Wellbody's Academy of Health & Wellness, we understand there's only one thing harder than making healthy behavior changes: Sticking to them! We all need a little help from our friends, and that's the purpose of the Wellbody Blog, a friendly online gathering spot--a community well--where you can dip into health news; wellness tips; recipes; latest research about nutrition, exercise, sleep and hygiene; plus, real stories from virtual neighbors who are also trying to change their lives for the better. Start from wherever you are; share ideas, information, inspiration. At Pacific Science Center, we believe each of us can do something everyday to improve our health and well-being.

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Dr. Inge200In honor of February as National Children’s Dental Health Month, we sat down with Dr. Ron Inge, Vice President and Dental Director of Delta Dental of Washington, to learn more about oral health. Before joining Delta Dental of Washington, Dr. Inge had more than 15 years of private practice experience as a family dentist in San Jose, California. He has been working with Delta Dental for eight years and currently resides in Fall City, Washington, about 25 miles east of Seattle.

Professor Wellbody: What motivated you to have a career in dentistry?

Dr. Inge: When I was in high school in California, I was an athlete. As a sophomore I began getting recruited by colleges. Each recruiter would ask me, “What do you want to study when you come to our university?” I always knew I wanted to go into the health field in one way or another. My mother was a nurse, but I knew I didn’t want to deal with life and death issues. So I had to take a step back and look at the individuals in my life. One of my mother’s associates was married to a dentist, and I was able to get a view into his career, his practice, how he provided for people, how he took care of others and provided for his family. So I started telling people at an early age I wanted to go to dental school. I was only 16 years old, so luckily I had the ability to visit dental schools at an early age. It turned out to be something I was very passionate about.

PW: How would you say your role at Delta Dental of Washington impacts patients?

sodamachine200WARNING: Soda Can Cause Obesity, Diabetes and Tooth Decay

If California lawmakers approve a bill introduced last week, soda and other beverages sweetened with added sugars would carry a health warning similar to the danger labels for cigarettes and alcohol.

"STATE OF CALIFORNIA SAFETY WARNING: Drinking beverages with added sugar(s) contributes to obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay."

(Keep reading for recipes for refreshing alternatives to soda.)

Gumdisease200February, the month of love, is the perfect time to focus on the heart.

The heart is a vital, muscular organ that pumps blood to various parts of the body. A sick heart can spell disaster for overall health; heart disease is the #1 killer of men and women in the U.S.

Surprisingly, one of the keys to a healthy heart is a healthy mouth. That’s because gum disease roughly doubles the risk of heart disease.

How are the heart and mouth are connected? And what can we do to prevent gum disease? 

bathfizzInstead of wallowing in sugar on Valentine’s Day, how ‘bout whipping up a homemade bath concoction sure to fizz away stress?

A relaxing, warm bath -- filled with aromatic bubbles -- is a terrific heart healthy treat for yourself and those you love. It’s also a fun chemistry experiment and great Valentine's Day gift! Keep reading to find out how to make your own Bath Fizz. (Last-minute gift idea: Assemble the ingredients to make Bath Fizz Kits for sweeties.)

heartbrownies200Photo©Tia K.Dark Chocolate: What’s Not To Love?

Aphrodisiac? Anti-inflammatory antioxidant? Antidote to Alzheimers?

Modest amounts of dark chocolate—if you believe all the studies—can reduce risk of cancer, heart disease and bad cholesterol while also improving memory and mood.

But you can't eat just any ol' chocolate. And be careful about sabotaging chocolate’s healthy effects by using it in recipes that also have gobs of butter, scoops of sugar and loads of refined flour. 

(Keep reading for two yummy -- and healthy -- Valentine’s Day recipes.