Calcium Connections

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Tuesday, April 25, 2006; 11:51 AM

Sometimes, it seems like parents and their kids share little in common. But they often both fall short on an important nutrient best known for building strong bones. Learn in today's Lean Plate Club column what else calcium does for your body, why it's important for both adults and kids to get enough and what surprisingly simple steps you can take to boost your calcium intake. Plus, you'll discover why doing so has other health benefits including possibly cutting your risk of Type 2 diabetes.

Seven Hours and 40 Minutes

That's the average time per day that the television is on in American homes, according to the TV-Turnoff Network, a nonprofit group that encourages pushing the "off" button on the remote this week.

The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute is just one of the groups backing this approach. Learn more about the institute's We Can! program designed to help 8- to 13-year-old children improve their eating and physical activity habits.

So what are your thoughts about turning the television off more often? Will you participate in this national effort? Tell us what you think about turning off the television--at least some of the time-- in today's Lean Plate Club Web chat live from 1 to 2 p.m. today. Or leave your comments ahead of time. Can't join live? Just e-mail me anytime at

Enough Zzz's

You know that lack of sleep can make you drowsy during the day. But giving sleep short shrift can also wreak havoc with production of hormones and other substances that are important for regulating blood sugar. What effect does lack of sleep have on your appetite, mood or ability to exercise? Tell us in today's Lean Plate Club Web chat, today from 1 to 2 p.m. Can't join live? Leave your questions, tips or comments ahead of time.

Seeking Successful Losers

Have you changed your habits and reached a healthier weight? We'd love to hear from you for a future LPC project. Please send an e-mail to with subject line "successful loser" and include your name, address, phone numbers and best times to call.

What's for Dinner Tonight?

Senegalese Lemon Chicken from Prevention magazine has plenty of onions, which are rich in inulin, a nondigestible carbohydrate that appears to help with calcium absorption. A serving of Senegalese chicken has about 200 calories per serving.

Other options: Spiced Shrimp and Red Onion Saute from One reviewer called it the best shrimp ever.

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© 2006 The Washington Post Company

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