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Tuesday, April 12, 2005


Geriatric medicine is becoming a bigger and bigger deal: soon, an unprecedentedly huge proportion of the population will be aged 65 or older, presenting numerous new problems for our already-troubled health care system.

With so much coverage of obesity as the current scourge of health and health care, it's easy to overlook a very common problem for old people's health: malnutrition. An article in today's New York Times discusses this problem, and offers some [overly complicated and too-expensive-for-most-people] suggestions. This is yet another area where the family really has to take responsibility: calling your grandparents, asking them what they've been eating, and if they're local, eating with them now and again.

While you take care of grandma, try not to think about how her smoking when pregnant with your mom may have doubled your risk of childhood asthma, leading to all those humiliating inhaler breaks during middle school P.E. Too bad we don't inherit genes directly from our grandparents like plants do!

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