This Week's Healthy SC Challenge Tips

August 29, 2008

COLUMBIA, SC – August 29, 2008 – The Healthy SC Challenge is the Sanford family’s effort to get all South Carolinians to do just a little more to live a healthier lifestyle. The tips are designed to encourage individuals and communities to live healthier lifestyles in three categories – nutrition, exercise and help to quit smoking. The tips can also be found on the challenge’s website,

The muscadine is the healthiest grape ever tested.  It is 40 times better for you than any other grape!  According to NC State University researchers, muscadines contain a unique blend of several natural antioxidants that can reduce the risk factors associated with degenerative diseases. Antioxidants help protect the body from the damaging effects of oxygen free radicals, which can contribute to degenerative diseases.

Muscadine grapes (Vitis rotundifolia) are truly a fruit for the South. Native to the Southeastern United States, they were discovered by the early colonists and have been a favorite fruit of Southerners ever since. Although muscadines can be grown successfully in most parts of South Carolina, they are best adapted from the Piedmont to the Coastal Plain.  The bronze variety, Scuppernong (self-unfruitful), and the black variety, Thomas, are the varieties most requested and widely known.
-Clemson Extension Home & Garden Information Center and NC Muscadine Grape Association

Physical Activity
Regular exercise helps people age more slowly and live healthier, more vigorous lives. And it also helps people live longer. Calculations based on the Harvard Alumni Study suggest that men who exercise regularly can gain about two hours of life expectancy for each hour of exercise. Over the course of a lifetime, that adds up to about two extra years. Maximum benefit does require regular exercise over the years, but it doesn’t mean a trip to the gym every day. In fact, just 30 minutes of brisk walking every day will go a long way toward enhancing your health.
-Harvard Medical International,

Feeling jittery? It might not just be nerves, but the effects of caffeine. According to Dr. Amy Lazev of the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Pennsylvania, people who are quitting smoking may experience a feeling of jitters or extra stress, which they think is because of the lack of nicotine. But, is actually more likely to be due to the caffeine [they normally ingest].

Surprisingly, nicotine can blunt the effects of caffeine, resulting in a far greater jolt when there’s no longer any nicotine in your system. However, Lazev states that it’s not necessary to give up caffeine entirely if you’re experiencing this effect. Often even a temporary reduction of caffeine will be enough to eliminate the discomfort and leave you feeling calm and collected again. Switching to tea or half-decaf coffee could offer you further relief, too.