Last Sunday I joined 197,890 of my closest friends at the Minnesota State Fair. Along with the best radio person in the business, Denny Long, I did a live, in-person broadcast of Healthy Matters. This was our 451th (!) live broadcast and my 9th year doing it from the state fair. I’m serious about the 197,000 figure. That is literally the number of people who attended – on just this one day – the country’s second-largest state fair (Texas is bigger but also runs twice as long).
To all of you who came out to see the show in person, thank you! It was great to meet people from all over the region . . . Moose Lake, Lonsdale, St. Louis Park, Woodbury . . . . but for those who didn’t make it last week, you have another chance! Come out to the Minnesota State Fair on Sunday, Sept 3, at 7:30 a.m. and say hi! We’ll do the show live from the veranda at the WCCO radio booth. If you come up and introduce yourself, I’ll put you on the radio and you can ask a health question. The WCCO radio booth is easy to find on Carnes Ave between Nelson and Underwood. It’s right by the Ye Olde Mill and right next to a Sweet Martha’s cookies.
On Sunday I am driving 430 miles from God’s country (Minneapolis) to just south of Lincoln, Nebraska to experience the total eclipse of the sun. That’s right, I’m driving to the area of “totality” along with about half the US population because it is a super cool thing to do. I’m totally pumped up for it!
Please no clouds in Nebraska, no clouds, no clouds . . .
I think we need a natural wonder to take our minds off our human-made conflicts right about now. And since this happens once every almost never, off I go with other adventurers from my family.
Now if only I could get a table reservation at a Lincoln restaurant. I’ve tried. It wasn’t easy. I have also heard that it may result in the first traffic jam in rural Nebraska history, complete with shortages of gas and bumper to bumper traffic. Yikes!
And don’t get me started on the saga of obtaining eclipse-viewing glasses. First set was perhaps counterfeit which led to a search for safe glasses only to find the entire country is sold out of them. But it all ended well as I did snag a pair of paper glasses for a mere ten bucks.
But this is a health and wellness blog, so I thought I’d look into the commonly-known advice to never look directly at the sun. I’m channeling my Bill Nye the Science Guy in this post.
We all know not to look at the sun. Heck, your mother could tell you that. But why is this so?
You just gotta learn about this woman. Her name is Charlene Barron and she sounds like an incredible woman. I also never got the chance to meet her, but I learned of her just this past week and if you were listening to the Healthy Matters radio broadcast on WCCO last Sunday, you heard about her as well.
Charlene died of a traumatic brain injury while doing something she loved – riding her bike on a training ride. She was also a runner and a triathlete, and a lover of dogs. I love that dog-lover part! Charlene was just 10o yards from the Boston Marathon finish line when the bomb went off. She has completed dozens of marathons, 30 Birke XC ski races, and 9 Ironman triathlons. And at age 60, she competed in the World Championship Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii.
To honor her, Charlene’s family has teamed up with the TBI program at HCMC (my healthcare organization) in a really cool event. It is Charlene’s Dog Run, and it is a fun event for you (and your dog!) and is open to anybody who wants to get involved in TBI research and make a difference. You don’t have to bring your dog, but you sure can if you want to!
Dr. Uzma Samadani is a neurosurgeon and colleague of mine at HCMC. She does incredible research on TBI and the proceeds of this event go to the TBI research program at HCMC. Dr. Samadani called in to the radio broadcast to tell us about Charlene and the Dog Run. Click the link at the bottom of this post to get the podcast and listen to my brief conversation with Dr. Samadani.
TBI and related links
On the show, I promised to put some links to sites you may wish to visit. Here they are:
The HCMC news article about Charlene and the Dog Run. I recommend you start with this link to read more.
Podcast of the Healthy Matters broadcast (Healthy Matters show #449, August 13, 2017). Listen to the first 5-10 minutes to hear my discussion with Dr. Samadani. We talk about Charlene, brain injury research, and an interesting bit about neck strengthening as a protective measure for TBI.
In 2013, people in the United States spent nearly $35 billion on vitamins and supplements. Something like 1 in 3 people take a multivitamin, and around half of people took some type of supplement in the past 30 days.
So why, on the Healthy Matters radio broadcast the other day, did I say that I am not a big fan of supplements?. They’re supposed to be good for you, right? Are all those people wrong?
No, they’re not all wrong. But I do have opinions on the use of vitamins and supplements, and I do think that for most people, they are a waste of money. Allow me to explain . . .
But first, to hear me pontificate about supplements on the radio broadcast, download the podcast by clicking the logo here and fast-forwarding to 28:54.