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Avoid weight gain while holiday snacking

Stop by the Health 1st Wellness Wednesday table between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Nov. 12 in the Children’s Hospital lobby to learn about health holiday eating and Health 1st events.

by Shani Friedman and Tiffany Ricci
Dietetic Interns
With the upcoming holidays, the air is festive and so is the office, brimming with sweet treats and yummy snacks. This can lead to mindless holiday eating (MHE),  an abnormal condition leading to unintentional weight gain. In fact, the average American can gain up to 5 pounds during the holiday season.
Although MHE is not a classified medical condition, it’s a very real issue many people face during the winter months. The solution to snacking on goodies all day should be determining how much longer you would need to exercise to keep the scales in your favor.
Visit the Wellness Wednesday table 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 12 to learn how much those little holiday treats add up. Also, pick up some recipes for healthy holiday treats to use for home or office.

Upcoming Health 1st events
Lowcountry Food Bank (Nov. 19)—Amy Kosar will help kick off this year’s food drive. Also, MUSC employees may get a free flu shot.

Worksite Screening—Nov. 20, Hollings Cancer Center: Subscribers of the State Health Plan (SHP) can receive this thorough preventive health screening right here at work. This screening, a $200 value, is available to SHP subscribers for $15 (spouse can also participate for $15). Employees without this insurance can participate for $38. This screening includes height, weight, blood pressure and a blood draw for blood chemistry profile, hemogram, and a blood lipid profile. Sign up by calling 792-9959.

Free Lunch and Learn: Tips for Surviving the Holidays: A free lunch-and-learn will be presented by MUSC’s Weight Management Center from noon to 1 p.m. Nov. 20. Sign up for this event to get helpful tips for enjoying the holidays without gaining weight. Registration is required and space is limited.

Flu shots (Nov. 26)—Last chance for MUSC employees to get a flu shot at Wellness Wednesday.

Self Defense and Massage Therapy (Dec. 3)—Learn important self defense techniques from MUSC’s Lt. Oneida Banks. Plus, get a free massage provided by the Center for Therapeutic Massage.

Cookbook: We need your recipes. MUSC’s Women’s Club, Heart Health and Health 1st have teamed up to create MUSC’s first heart healthy cookbook. Submit your recipes to by Dec. 12.

Wellness Teams: Start Walking and Get Healthy. Join a wellness team to walk your way to prizes, friendship and a healthier, happier you. Form a team and receive free pedometers.

Smoking Cessation Class: Ready to quit—for life. Health 1st and Robert Mallin, M.D., of the Department of Family Medicine, want to help you succeed through this free series of classes.
Participants will receive a free medical consultation and prescriptions, which will be written for any approved smoking cessation medications. Call 792-9959.

For information on these events, call 792-9959 or visit

Editor's note: The preceding column was brought to you on behalf of Health 1st. Striving to bring various topics and representing numerous employee wellness organizations and committees on campus, this weekly column seeks to provide MUSC, MUHA and UMA employees with current and helpful information concerning all aspects of health.


Nov. 7, 2008

The Catalyst Online is published weekly by the MUSC Office of Public Relations for the faculty, employees and students of the Medical University of South Carolina. The Catalyst Online editor, Kim Draughn, can be reached at 792-4107 or by email, Editorial copy can be submitted to The Catalyst Online and to The Catalyst in print by fax, 792-6723, or by email to To place an ad in The Catalyst hardcopy, call Island Publications at 849-1778, ext. 201.