Category: Lifestyle Written by Debbie Norrell
PUPPY PURSE: Actress Quvenzhane Wallis arrives at the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on Feb. 24, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Matt Sayles/Invision/AP)
by Debbie Norrell
Quvenzhané Wallis wasn't the only pint-sized star to dazzle on the Oscars red carpet Sunday night. Her tutu-and-tiara-wearing puppy purse was also turning heads and was so age appropriate.
Last Updated on Thursday, 28 February 2013 22:44
Category: Lifestyle Written by Debbie Norrell
I’m always looking for a good sitcom and I have found it. “Real Husbands of Hollywood” on BET is laugh out loud funny. It is billed as the fakest reality show ever, as least they admit it is fake. Funny man Kevin Hart is the creator and executive producer and by the way I’m loving me some Kevin Hart. He is funny, smart, and cute and when you meet him in person he is friendly and open. I digress.
This is the best spoof of the Hollywood reality Housewives franchise that I have seen. Each man plays his self but you never see his wife. Most of them have a wife, according to Hart’s bio he was married but seems to be filing for divorce. He is enamored with the other guy’s wives who you rarely if at all see; you only hear about them or see their photos.
The cast list includes: Kevin Hart, J.B. Smoove (Shahidah) Robin Thicke (Paula Patton), Nick Cannon (Mariah Carey), Duane Martin (Tisha Campbell-Martin) and Boris Kodjoe (Nicole Ari Parker). There are always special guests like Trey Songz, Faison Love, Common, Nelly, Shaquille O’Neal and Jay Leno. Entertainment Weekly voted the show on its top ten list as number one.
I plan to own this series because I’m loving it just that much, I now look forward to Tuesday night television. Also on Tuesday night is the “Second Generation Wayans.” The laugh-at-our-pain comedy stars Craig and Damien Wayans, their real-life production partner, George O. Gore II, who played Damon Wayans’ son Michael on ABC’s “My Wife and Kids.” Despite Craig having writing credits on Scary Movie 2, Damien having directed the 2009 parody film Dance Flick, and both cousins having writing and directing credits for episodes of “My Wife and Kids,” Craig says the cousins still “have to pay dues every day,” as some industry insiders still dismiss their accomplishments as nepotism. But Damien insists, with a laugh, that “There is no nepotism in the fam! There are a lot of unfunny Wayans,” he says, considering that there are 10 siblings in Keenan’s generation alone, each with their own children. “If you can’t do the work (even on a family production), you don’t get the job.”
The cousins make fun of their one-foot-in-and-one-foot-out Hollywood struggle in a new, semi-autobiographical BET sitcom, “Second Generation Wayans.” The show is scripted but also has that reality flavor.
It is nice to see the evolution of Ali since her Fresh Prince days. I loved her on “Love That Girl” and would like to see more episodes of that show as well. Gore has grown up and thinned out, he seems like a really smart young man, so different than his character on “My Wife and Kids.”
I was telling a friend about these new shows and they immediately told me that they don’t like baffoonery. I asked them which episode were they talking about and they informed me that they had never seen either show. Uh hello, how do you judge a show you have never watched? I say check out both be open and enjoy.
Last Updated on Thursday, 28 February 2013 10:24
Category: Lifestyle Written by Courier Newsroom
World Day of Prayer
MARCH 1—Baptist Temple Church, 7241 Race St., Homewood, will host the World Day of Prayer 2013 at 1 p.m. Churches from Squirrel Hill, Shadyside, East Liberty, Homewood and Penn Hills will hold services together. The day is to bring informed prayer and prayerful action to the communities. Refreshments will be served following the event. For more information, call 412-241-1624.
Chamber Music Concert
MARCH 3—East Liberty Presbyterian Church, 116 S. Highland Ave., East Liberty, will host a Chamber Music Concert at 4 p.m. The guest musician will be pianist Senior Pastor Rev. Dr. Randy Bush. He will be joined by a woodwind quartet, along with others. Admission is free. For more information, call 412-441-3800.
World Day of Prayer
MARCH 5—Mt. Ararat Baptist Church, 271 Paulson Ave., East Liberty, will host the World Day of Prayer at 11 a.m. This is an international event that unites various denominations in prayer. Area churches from Squirrel Hill, Shadyside, East Liberty, Homewood and Penn Hills will hold services together. Refreshments will be served. For more information, call 412-441-1800.
Heroes In Our Midst
MARCH 9—The Baptist Minister’s Conference of Pittsburgh and Vicinity will host “Heroes In Our Midst” from 1-4 p.m. at Stratigos Banquet Center, 131 Colonial Manor Rd., North Huntingdon. The theme is “Shifting into 21st Century Ministry.” The event will honor Pittsburgh Steeler Charlie Batch and Rev. Dr. William Curtis, senior pastor at Mt. Ararat Baptist Church. Steeler Ryan Clark will be the master of ceremonies. Registration is required and the cost is $50 per person. For more information, call Barbara Gunn at 412-823-4049.
Young, Gifted and Black
MARCH 9—The Christian Education Department of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church will host their 6th Annual “Young, Gifted and Black” program at 3:30 p.m. at the Doubletree By Hilton Hotel, 101 Mall Blvd., Monroeville. Ten young adults, ages 21-40, will be applauded for outstanding service and commitment to their church, profession and community. Evan Frazier, of Highmark, will be the keynote speaker and Kimberly Gill, of KDKA, will be the mistress of ceremonies. Tickets are $30 and must be purchased in advance. For more information, call Arzella Stewart-McCauley at 412-526-8981.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 February 2013 10:28
Category: Lifestyle Written by Debbie Norrell
MEET & GREET—Kellen Hill, Ray Brooks, Lula Barron and Linda Holmes (Photo by Debbie Norrell)
The best way for job seekers to find that next position is to network, network, network. On Feb. 21 at the beautiful Savoy Restaurant, Pittsburgh Mercy Health System sponsored “Meet & Greet: Focus on Diversity,” a networking opportunity for human and social service professionals who hold bachelor’s and/or master’s degrees. Attendees were able to enjoy a beautiful and comfortable atmosphere while learning more about Pittsburgh Mercy, one of the region’s largest health and social service nonprofit organizations, serving more than 26,000 people annually in 60 locations in southwestern Pennsylvania and all it has to offer.
Robyn Macklin, program specialist supervisor, says Savoy was the perfect place to bring people together to learn more about Pittsburgh Mercy Health System. “This was a good central location, I know the owner and this was a warm and inviting space,” Macklin said.
The Pittsburgh Mercy Health System, a member of Catholic Health East and sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, is an extension of the Catholic health care ministry to all people in southwestern Pennsylvania. They carry out their mission through core values and with a commitment to being a transforming, healing presence within the communities they serve. They stand with the vulnerable of our communities in assessing needs, collaborating with others, providing services that address the whole person and advocating for social change.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 February 2013 10:30
Category: Lifestyle Written by Associated Press
PREPARING FISH—A fishmonger prepares fish for a client in a market in Barcelona, Spain. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
by Marilyn Marchione
AP Chief Medical Writer
Pour on the olive oil, preferably over fish and vegetables: One of the longest and most scientific tests of a Mediterranean diet suggests this style of eating can cut the chance of suffering heart-related problems, especially strokes, in older people at high risk of them.
The study lasted five years and involved about 7,500 people in Spain. Those who ate Mediterranean-style with lots of olive oil or nuts had a 30 percent lower risk of major cardiovascular problems compared to those who were told to follow a low-fat diet but who in reality, didn't cut fat very much. Mediterranean meant lots of fruit, fish, chicken, beans, tomato sauce, salads, and wine and little baked goods and pastries.
Mediterranean diets have long been touted as heart-healthy, but that's based on observational studies that can't prove the point. The new research is much stronger because people were assigned diets to follow for a long time and carefully monitored. Doctors even did lab tests to verify that the Mediterranean diet folks were consuming more olive oil or nuts as recommended.
Most of these people were taking medicines for high cholesterol and blood pressure, and researchers did not alter those proven treatments, said one study leader, Dr. Ramon Estruch of Hospital Clinic in Barcelona.
But as a first step to prevent heart problems, "we think diet is better than a drug" because it has few if any side effects, Estruch said. "Diet works."
Results were published online Monday by the New England Journal of Medicine and were discussed at a nutrition conference in Loma Linda, Calif.
People in the study were not given rigid menus or calorie goals because weight loss was not the aim. That could be why they found the "diets" easy to stick with — only about 7 percent dropped out within two years. There were twice as many dropouts in the low-fat group than among those eating Mediterranean-style.
Researchers also provided the nuts and olive oil, so it didn't cost participants anything to use these relatively pricey ingredients. The type of oil may have mattered — they used extra-virgin olive oil, which is minimally processed and richer than regular or light olive oil in the chemicals and nutrients that earlier studies have suggested are beneficial.
The study involved people ages 55 to 80, just over half of them women. All were free of heart disease at the start but were at high risk for it because of health problems — half had diabetes and most were overweight and had high cholesterol and blood pressure.
They were assigned to one of three groups: Two followed a Mediterranean diet supplemented with either extra-virgin olive oil (4 tablespoons a day) or with walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds (a fistful a day). The third group was urged to eat a low-fat diet heavy on bread, potatoes, pasta, rice, fruits, vegetables and fish and light on baked goods, nuts, oils and red meat.
Independent monitors stopped the study after nearly five years when they saw fewer problems in the two groups on Mediterranean diets.
Doctors tracked a composite of heart attacks, strokes or heart-related deaths. There were 96 of these in the Mediterranean-olive oil group, 83 in the Mediterranean-nut group and 109 in the low-fat group.
Looked at individually, stroke was the only problem where type of diet made a big difference. Diet had no effect on death rates overall.
The Mediterranean diet proved better even though its followers ate about 200 calories more per day than the low-fat group did. The study leaders now are analyzing how each of the diets affected weight gain or loss and body mass index.
The Spanish government's health research agency initiated and paid for the study, and foods were supplied by olive oil and nut producers in Spain and the California Walnut Commission. Many of the authors have extensive financial ties to food, wine and other industry groups but said the sponsors had no role in designing the study or analyzing and reporting its results.
Rachel Johnson, a University of Vermont professor who heads the American Heart Association's nutrition committee, said the study is very strong because of the lab tests to verify oil and nut consumption and because researchers tracked actual heart attacks, strokes and deaths — not just changes in risk factors such as high cholesterol.
"At the end of the day, what we care about is whether or not disease develops," she said. "It's an important study."
Rena Wing, a weight-loss expert at Brown University, noted that researchers provided the oil and nuts, and said "it's not clear if people could get the same results from self-designed Mediterranean diets" — or if Americans would stick to them more than Europeans who are used to such foods.
Dr. George Bray of the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, La., said he would give the study "a positive — even glowing — comment" and called it "the best and certainly one of the largest prospective dietary trials ever done."
"The data are sufficiently strong to convince me to move my dietary pattern closer to the Mediterranean Diet that they outline," he added.
Another independent expert also praised the study as evidence diet can lower heart risks.
"The risk reduction is close to that achieved with statins," cholesterol-lowering drugs, said Dr. Robert Eckel, a diet and heart disease expert at the University of Colorado.
"But this study was not carried out or intended to compare diet to statins or blood pressure medicines," he warned. "I don't think people should think now they can quit taking their medicines."
Marilynn Marchione can be followed at http://twitter.com/MMarchioneAP
Last Updated on Tuesday, 26 February 2013 07:40
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