Trick or Treat: Does Chocolate Help Brain Health?

A new study this week that linked the antioxidant-rich flavanols in cocoa to improved memory in healthy older adults produced lots of yummy headlines, so  it’s OK to stuff ourselves with leftover Halloween candy, right? Well, not exactly. Study participants — all between the ages of 50 and 69 — saw striking improvements in memory after drinking a special cocoa drink daily for just three months. On average, the memory of 60-year-olds improved to perform more like that of  30- or 40-year-olds, according to …

11 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week

News, discoveries and … fun 1. Making candy corn used to be back-breaking work. (Learn more at Slate) 2. Kanzi, a 33-year-old ape, can build a fire and roast marshmallows. (Learn more at GrindTV.com) >> Famous Child Stars — Where Are They Now? 3. Gladiators in the 2nd century consumed an “energy drink” of vinegar and ash. (Learn more at Discovery) 4. The coating on cash register receipts causes serious health problems. (Learn more at AARP)   5. Nearly 1 in …

BB and CC Creams: Treat or Trick?

I tend to be skeptical about most new beauty trends, but ever since BB creams took over the makeup aisle I’ve become both skeptical and curious. The promise of a treatment-makeup hybrid appeals to the multitasker in me. But I also can’t help wondering: Are BB and CC creams (and the rest of their alphabetic ilk) merely clever marketing schemes? >> No Way These Celebs Are 60-Plus! As Halloween nears, it’s time to examine whether BB and CC creams are …

Denzel, Tragic Love and 10 Not-So-Happy “Halloweens”

The Equalizer If Denzel Washington and director Antoine Fuqua were to surprise us at any point during this over-the-top action flick, they would have failed at their mission. The Equalizer is not about breaking ground, nor creating art. It’s about Denzel — older, wiser, more experienced than those around him — kicking bad-guy butt against a backdrop of dark alleys and rusting industrial landscapes. No one does the dead-eyed-hero bit better than Denzel, and few directors choreograph action more deftly …

Pumpkins and Punctuation Marks!

Great excitement colors every Halloween.  Kids happily don their costumes – some out of the box, some handmade – carve their jack o’lanterns, then set off to troll neighborhoods in the dusk and dark for candy galore. At my AARP Experience Corps school, the students woke up Halloween morning and put on their costumes for the school day.  Teachers and administrators dressed up as well and the entire school stepped outside for a street parade.  They marched about five blocks …

The Importance of Making Time for Fun

Taking care of my parents involves juggling many aspects of their lives. At times, their health  issues seem to overwhelm everything else. So much of our time goes to doctor appointments, physical, speech and occupational therapy, and dealing with my mom’s cuts and bruises.  I know, of course, this is critical to keeping them as healthy as possible. But I believe that quality of life is pretty important, too. Even if we have good health, without the moments of joy, …