Posts Tagged ‘In the News’

For a longer life, your waist size should be half your height

September 8th, 2014 No Comments

Tape Measure

Can waist size determine your longevity?

In the news this week: a new study by City University London has reported that a simple measurement around the waist can help determine if you will live to an average age. If your waist size is at least half your height, you should live to the average life expectancy–about 81. If your waist size is over half, you’re at risk of losing months or years, depending on your age, gender, and waist size.

How to measure your waist: without breathing in, measure between your lowest rib and hip bone.

One of the researchers, Dr. Margaret Ashwell, advises people to use the waist measurement/height method rather than BMI (Body Mass Index). She believes it’s a more reliable predictor of poor health and obesity.

Whether you use BMI or waist measurement, being overweight isn’t good for you or your older loved one’s health. Take time each day to do at least 150 minutes per week of moderate activity. Moderate activity includes walking quickly, swimming, house cleaning, etc.

For more on this story, visit


What’s your idea of the “perfect age”? The answer may surprise you…

September 18th, 2013 2 Comments

What is the perfect age?

An interesting poll by Harris Interactive has just released its findings of what 2,242 adults reported as a perfect age. The actual question was: “If you could skip time and live forever in good health at a particular age, what age would you like to live at?” In this youth-obsessed culture, the answer may surprise you: it’s age 50.  Interestingly, in 2003, the answer was 41. The poll also asked questions regarding what each person viewed as their perfect age for various life events, including retirement:

  • Perfect age for graduating from college: 22
  • Perfect age for moving away from your parent’s house: 20
  • Perfect age for getting married: 26
  • Perfect age for having your first child: 28
  • Perfect age for retiring: 61

What’s interesting about the retirement age is that those over 68 cited 64 as their ideal retirement age. Although 61 is the ideal retirement age (and also the current retirement age, according to a Gallup poll), the retirement age is expected to rise. For those born on or after 1960, your Social Security benefits can start at age 62 for partial benefit, or wait until age 67 for full benefits. As people live longer and long-term elder care costs increase, many people may even delay retirement until their 70s.

Read more about The Harris Poll at

96-year-old man’s song written for late wife tops iTunes chart

August 30th, 2013 No Comments

Visiting Angels - In The NewsiTunes Chart Topper Written by 96-Year-Old Man

Have you heard about the chart-topping tune on iTunes written by a 96-year-old man for his late wife? It’s called “Oh Sweet Lorraine.” Fred Stobaugh of Peoria, Illinois, had entered a songwriting contest for a nearby studio. The producers were so moved by the lyrics that they recorded the song and produced a documentary about it (the documentary has gone viral, watch below). In the documentary, Mr. Stobaugh hears the professionally recorded song for the first time. The couple met in 1938 when Lorraine worked at the A&W Root Beer as a car hop. They were married two years later. She recently died in April after nearly 73 years of marriage. The song’s lyrics express love for his wife. Get out your hankies…tears will fall when you hear it!


Burlington County NJ woman’s murder charge dropped due to dementia

August 22nd, 2013 No Comments

Dementia cited as reason for dropping Burlington County NJ woman’s murder charge

Fredricka Rosa, 78, from Burlington County allegedly shot and killed her husband in 2012 and was charged with first-degree murder and unlawful possession of a weapon. A judge recently dropped the charges after it was determined her dementia made her incompetent to stand trial. Ms. Rosa was diagnosed with dementia in 2009. It’s unclear why Ms. Rosa shot her husband; she has no recollection of the alleged crime. The victim, Valpa Rosa, had several guns in the home which were not locked away.

The dangers of having guns near those with dementia

Persons with dementia are not safe owning or handling guns. It’s also unsafe for family members living in the same home with their loved one. Their memory is impaired, as well as their judgement. Dementia may cause hallucinations, which can trigger a person into believing an intruder is in the home, when in reality it’s a family member or a shadow on the wall. A person with dementia may believe they are in serious peril and will not hesitate to shoot.

If you have an older loved one who owns one or more guns, follow these tips:

  • Is the gun owner truly able–physically and mentally–to handle a gun?
  • If the gun owner is not competent, get their permission to release the weapon from their home.
  • If the gun owner isn’t competent to own firearms, and refuses to release the gun(s), remove it from the home anyway. You may need to enlist assistance from your local police department.


Seniors, watch out for the Medical Alert robocall scam that’s been going around…

June 26th, 2013 No Comments

Visiting Angels - In The News

New Jersey elders beware!

Seniors have been experiencing a wave of robocalls recently. Here’s the scenario: the phone rings, and the caller explains to the senior that their Life Alert system is paid for and ready to ship, just call the number to set up delivery. Once the senior calls the number, they are instructed to give their credit card or Medicare number. Some people have reported being charged $35/month and did receive an alert system. Others have reported not receiving anything at all, yet being unable to stop the charges.

It’s important to beware of scammers preying on seniors. Follow these tips:

  • If you don’t know the caller, don’t give them personal information
  • If you receive an automated call from an unknown company (or if the offer seems “off”, don’t respond)
  • If you receive a robocall, don’t press “1” to talk to a person; just hang up

If you or your loved on has fallen for this–or any other scam–contact your credit card to stop payment, if applicable, and the Better Business Bureau to report the calls. Read more at


New Jersey seniors: don’t fall prey to “Grandparent scam”

June 11th, 2013 No Comments

In the news recently have been the continuing reports of a popular “grandparent scam” among criminals who prey on seniors; this is important to NJ elder care workers to note as well. A New Jersey couple was recently featured in a CNN article; they lost $7000 to a scammer. The scenario usually goes something like this: the criminal calls a senior and pretends to be a grandchild. The criminal, acting as the grandchild, frantically tells the family member that he’s in trouble (has been involved in a car accident, has been jailed or detained in a foreign country, or robbed) and needs money wired to him ASAP. The criminal will then tell the senior not to tell the grandchild’s parent. In a panic situation, the grandparent may immediately react, wanting desperately to help the grandchild and will wire money to the “grandchild” criminal. If that weren’t enough, the criminal might even call back for even more money, posing as a lawyer, doctor, administrator, or bondsmen.

Tips to avoid the “grandparent scam”:

  • Be wary of people calling for cash unexpectedly
  • Never wire money before verifying
  • Create a code word within family members to give in case of an emergency
  • Criminals search social media for clues, so limit personal information

Read the CNN story: Read why older people might be more trusting.

What would your older parent or grandparent do with $590 million?

June 6th, 2013 No Comments

The winning Powerball ticket holder is no longer a mystery. Gloria C. MacKenzie, an 84-year-old mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, has claimed the largest undivided jackpot in history—$590 million (around $278 million after taxes). From a small town in Florida, Zephyrhills, Mrs. MacKenzie purchased her ticket at Publix Supermarket after another woman allowed her to go in front of her in line. What would your elder loved one do with such winnings?



In The News: Oldest Man to Reach the Summit of Mt. Everest

May 23rd, 2013 No Comments

© Sova004 | Dreamstime Stock Photos & Stock Free Images

Did you hear about the Japanese man who reached the summit of Mt. Everest? He’s the oldest man ever to do so. Yuichiro Miura is an 80 year old who, in the past, has had four heart surgeries, a fractured thigh, and a broken pelvis. He was accompanied by his son, 43, and a team of eight other climbers. It’s his third time climbing Mt. Everest, and is planning on climbing again when he’s 85. Another climber from Nepal, Min Bahadur Sherchan, 81, plans to beat Miura’s record of being the oldest to reach the top. Visiting Angels NJ salutes these octogenarians on their passion for life!

To read more, go to the ABC news story at



You’re never too old to be on Facebook…

February 21st, 2013 1 Comment

Visiting Angels - In The NewsIn the news recently is the story of an older Michigan woman, whose real age on Facebook must be denied due to a technical glitch. Maguerite Joseph, born in 1908, is a 104-year-old Facebook user. However, a glitch in Facebook’s system only allows members to list their birth year as 1910 or above. Facebook is currently working on fixing the error.

According to her Facebook page, Mrs. Joseph loves to tell her stories and is a wealth of knowledge and history. Gross Point News wrote an article about her life when she turned 100 ( Although her eyesight is poor, she responds to her Facebook posts through her granddaughter, who reads and writes her posts for her. She is able to stay in touch with her family, which includes 12 grandchildren, and friends.

If you are a tech-savvy family caregiver involved in elder care NJ, why not help your older loved one set up their own Facebook page? It can help them engage more with their family and friends, and will give them an outlet by which to share stories and photos.



If you speak 2 or more languages daily, you may have a decreased risk of having dementia…

January 11th, 2013 No Comments

Visiting Angels - In The NewsIf you or your aging parent speak two or more languages fluently, on a daily basis, you may have a decreased risk of early-onset dementia, an article in the January issue of Journal of Neuroscience explains. Because of the way the brain functions in someone who is bilingual, enabling faster mental task switching, a “cognitive reserve” is built up in the brain. This allows the brain to run more smoothly for a longer period of time than with people who only speak one language. Being bilingual is a brain booster! Interesting news for those involved in elder care New Jersey.

Read more about these findings at–