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Triangle Go Red for Women Health Screening

Knowledge is power – especially when it comes to heart disease. It’s this knowledge that can help save the life of your mother, daughter, sister, grandmother – or other important female in your life.

You Can Help Prevent Heart Disease in Women

Help us spread awareness about women’s heart health by empowering women to become more educated about the risks involved with heart disease.

Join us tomorrow at Crabtree Valley Mall where we’ll be partnering with the Triangle Chapter of the American Heart Association, Allscripts, and Macy’s to host the Triangle Go Red for Women Health Screening. Details are below:

Where: Crabtree Valley Mall, on the Lower Level Promotion Court (near Sears)
When: Saturday, Feb. 6, 11am – 2pm

WakeMed women at Triangle Go Red for Women Health Screening

Go Red for Women with FREE Heart Health Screenings

The Go Red for Women heart health screening is great opportunity to learn how you can protect yourself from heart disease. We encourage you to bring a friend or family member, and stop by to receive a FREE and confidential heart health screening. Other things you can expect include:

  • Office fitness tips from Allscripts
  • Snap a #GoRedSelfie
  • Get heart health prevention tips
  • Share your personal heart story for a chance to become a Go Red for Women spokesperson
  • And more!

Make sure you check our website for more information about our Upcoming Women & Heart Disease Events.


WakeMed Celebrates National Wear Red Day

Tomorrow (February 5th) is National Wear Red Day, and we’re participating in a colorful way: by wearing red! Whether it’s a hat, socks, lipstick, or other fashion item – grab it and wear it to help show your support for women who are surviving and thriving with heart disease. Wearing red is also a way to show your support for all of those who provide care to heart patients each and every day here at WakeMed.

WakeMed National Wear Red Day

About National Wear Red Day

National Wear Red Day is an initiative that was founded by the American Heart Association (AHA) in 2003. It takes place each year on the first Friday of February with the purpose of raising awareness about heart disease and stroke in women.

According to the AHA, 1 in 3 women die of heart disease and stroke each year despite the fact that heart disease and stroke is 80% preventable.

We CAN make a difference!

Get Heart Smart: Go Red for Women!

One of the keys to preventing heart disease in women is education. The more informed women are about heart disease and stroke risks, the better prepared we’ll be  when it comes to making diet and lifestyle changes to save lives. Join us in raising awareness about heart disease in women.

Check out some of our upcoming Women’s Heart Month Events, and stop by Crabtree Valley Mall this Saturday, February 6th between 11am and 2pm. We’ll be partnering with the Triangle Chapter of the AHA, Allscripts, and Macy’s to offer FREE heart health screenings, office fitness tips, and more!


Raising Awareness About Women’s Heart Health

February is the month for love- especially when it comes to your heart health! To help kick off American Heart Month, our own Dr. Sahar Amery stopped by Cameron Village to chat with My Carolina Today about the importance of raising awareness about women’s heart health.

Heart disease is the #1 killer of women, so this is the time of year that we educate everyone – especially women- about signs & symptoms & prevention of heart disease – Dr. Sahar Amery, WakeMed Heart & Vascular Physician

Watch the video below to see the full interview, and be sure to check out some of the great Heart Month Events we have coming up, starting with Go Red for Women this Friday!


2016 Is the International Year of Pulses

What are “pulses”?

Pulses are part of the legume family, but the term “pulse” refers to the dried seed. When you think pulses, think of beans.

Peas, chick peas, kidney beans – all provide a healthy source of protein; all are considered “pulses”, and all are part of the 2016 International Year of Pulses (IYP) campaign, launched by the 68th United Nations General Assembly .

According to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the purpose behind IYP is:

…to heighten public awareness of the nutritional benefits of pulses as part of sustainable food production aimed towards food security and nutrition.

Assortment of different types of beans

So, how do pulses impact our community?

Aside from the obvious nutritional benefits, planting and growing pulses:

  • Improves soil fertility – which is good for the environment
  • Are relatively cheap to purchase
  • Are highly nutritious – which can prevent/or help manage chronic diseases like diabetes

Check out some of the additional nutritional value that beans have as well as some great recipes to try!

Beans Health

Beans pack a nutritional punch. They are a low cost way of getting a lot of nutrients. There is plenty of research showing that eating beans and legumes on a regular basis helps with maintaining health and preventing chronic diseases.

Complex Carbohydrates

  • Beans are a source of good carbohydrates.
  • Since beans have more fiber and protein, they have a low glycemic index, making them a good choice for people with diabetes.

Dietary Fiber

  • Beans are rich in both soluble and insoluble fibers.
  • Fiber helps keep you full for a longer time, preventing blood sugar fluctuations.
  • Soluble fiber helps lower cholesterol.
  • Insoluble fiber combats constipation, colon cancer, & other digestive issues.


  • Beans are a good source of cholesterol-free plant-based protein and have been identified as a meat alternative by the USDA My Plate.
  • Beans contain between 21 to 25% protein by weight, which is much higher than other sources of vegetable protein.
  • Regular intake of beans is extremely important worldwide as they provide a good source of protein at a low cost compared to animal protein sources.

Essential Vitamins and Minerals

  • Beans are good sources of potassium, a mineral that promotes healthy blood pressure levels.
  • Beans are excellent sources of copper, phosphorus, manganese & magnesium.
  • Beans are rich sources of iron.
  • Dry beans are an excellent source of riboflavin & B vitamins.

Slow Cooker Black Bean Soup

Yield: 8 cups


  • Black bean soup3 cups dried black beans, soaked in 8 cups of water for 8-12 hours, then drained and rinsed
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 red onion, finely diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 inch piece ginger, grated
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder, optional
  • ½ tsp. dried oregano
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 8 cups water
  • Salt to taste


  1. In a skillet, over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and red pepper. Sauté the vegetables for 4-5 minutes, just until the onions are translucent. Add the tomatoes, garlic and ginger, and stir for 1 minute, until the garlic is fragrant.
  2. Put the black beans into the slow cooker. Add the pepper and onion mixture. Add all ingredients except the cilantro. Cook the soup in the crock-pot for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.
  3. Add the cilantro before serving.

Spinach with Chickpeas Recipe

Servings: 6


  • 2 pounds baby spinach
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium red onion, finely chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 19-ounce can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
  • 1 ½  teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 ½  teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 ½  teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½  teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½  cup reduced-sodium chicken broth, or vegetable broth


  1. In a skillet, over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and sauté till translucent.
  2. Add in the spinach, a small batch at a time till all the spinach is wilted and nicely coated with the oil.
  3. Add in all the other ingredients. Cook for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Serve warm with whole wheat pita bread or over a bed of cooked brown rice.

About Parul Kharod, MS, RD, LDN

Parul is a Clinical Dietitian in Outpatient Nutrition Services at WakeMed Cary Hospital. For information related to diet and nutrition, or to speak to one of our licensed, registered dietitians, contact Outpatient Nutrition Services today. Insurance coverage and costs may vary.


January is National Thyroid Awareness Month

Your thyroid may be tiny, but it plays a BIG role in your overall health! National Thyroid Awareness month shines a light on thyroid awareness and the significant role that this gland plays in all of our lives.

So, how do can you tell if your child has a problem with his/her thyroid?

pediatrician doctor examining small child for thyroid problem

Thyroid Disorders in Children: Recognizing Signs & Symptoms

Located at the base of the neck, the thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland responsible for producing hormones that regulate every single cell, tissue, and organ in your body- including your heart, blood pressure, liver function, and metabolism.

Babies can have thyroid issues if they are born without a thyroid gland, or if the thyroid didn’t develop properly. These issues are usually detected by your state’s newborn screen.

Children who have thyroid disorders may have inherited it from relatives or due to other reasons, such as:

  • Lack of iodine in their diet
  • Medications that prevent the thyroid from producing hormones
  • Association with genetic syndromes (such as Down’s or Turner’s)

The most common types of thyroid conditions include hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid), and hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid).

In children, signs of hyperthyroidism include:

  • Feeling jumpy, trouble focusing/concentrating
  • Fast heartbeat, shaking hands
  • Excessive sweating, trouble sleeping
  • Wide eyes, bulging eyes
  • Rapid weight loss, despite being very hungry

In children, signs of hypothyroidism include:

  • Delayed growth/puberty
  • Slower heartbeat, sluggish/lack of energy
  • Constipation
  • Yellow/pale skin, dry skin

When to See a Doctor

The good news about thyroid issues is that they are usually manageable. If you think your child has a thyroid problem, it is best to always check with your child’s pediatrician first to help properly diagnose what is going on.

At WakeMed Physician Practices, our Pediatric Endocrinology department provides state-of-the-art diagnoses, treatment, and management of thyroid problems and other endocrine issues in children, ranging from birth to 18 years of age. Contact them at 919-350-7584 to make an appointment today.

About Dr. Hillary Lockemer:

Dr. Lockemer is a board certified pediatric endocrinologist with WakeMed Physician Practices whose research and work has been published in the Journal of Pediatric Emergency Care.

About National Thyroid Awareness Month

Launched in 2012, by the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, National Thyroid Awareness month highlights the silent epidemic of thyroid disease through education and research.


Is WakeMed supportive of a vaginal birth after a c-section (VBAC)?

We get this question frequently from mothers who have had one or more c-sections and would prefer a vaginal birth with a subsequent pregnancy.

We asked Seth Brody, OB/GYN and executive medical director for women’s services at WakeMed, to provide some guidance for expectant mothers on this question.  Here is his answer:

“In general, we are very supportive of VBACs at WakeMed’s three birthing centers and at WakeMed Physician Practices – OB/GYNs and Maternal Fetal Medicine.  The majority of time, a vaginal birth after one c-section is successful with no complications.  However, there is still a slightly higher risk, less than 1% in most cases, of uterine rupture even after one c-section.  But, as long as a thorough review of the history as well as the benefits and risks of VBAC are discussed, and the patient and the physician agree, then WakeMed and WakeMed’s physicians are supportive of a VBAC.

If the mother has had two or less cesarean sections and her records confirm a transverse or side-to-side cut in the lower part of the uterus, then we do support VBAC after counseling with a physician.

Things get more complicated if the mother has three of more c-sections because her risk for uterine rupture will be higher.  This is not to say that a VBAC is out of the question, but it would be very important for the mother to be well-informed of the risks, have a strong partnership with a physician who specializes in high-risk deliveries and the delivery should occur at Raleigh Campus where there are high-level services available in the event of complications.

It is also a great idea for any mother, regardless of the number of c-sections, to have a consultation with a maternal fetal medicine provider.  WakeMed Physician Practices – Maternal Fetal Medicine physicians offer appointments at both Raleigh Campus and at WakeMed North.


Staying Hydrated in Cold Weather: Why It’s Important

Young man and woman on ski slope, drinking waterWhen most people think about hydration and dehydration, they think of the hot, humid summer months. However, it’s just as important to stay hydrated in cold weather.


Dehydration affects your heart rate, kidney, and mental functions- and despite it being cold outside, your body still loses a considerable amount of water through sweating and evaporation.

Also, during the winter, the air is drier. This means you lose more water through respiration as your body attempts to ‘humidify’ the cold/dry air that you breathe. This warm, humidified air is why you see a ‘fog’ in the cold air every time you exhale.

True or False: You don’t feel as thirsty during the winter months

TRUE! Your thirst response is blunted during the winter because your body is working overtime to keep your mucus membranes moist (think nose/mouth). Therefore, you don’t have the dry, parched mouth to hint to you that you’re thirsty.

Dehydration during the Summer/Winter: Which has the higher risk?

IT DEPENDS. Your age, medical condition & activities all play a role in your overall risk. The winter tends to catch more people off guard because they’re not expecting it. Also, in the winter, we tend to drink warmer, caffeinated drinks, which cause diuresis (increased urination), which leads to dehydration.

Does cold weather speed up dehydration?

YES! Your body’s vascular response is to constrict the blood vessels on the periphery (toes/ fingers) to conserve blood volume and warmth to your core. This increases blood flow to your kidneys, which makes them respond with increased urination. You also experience increased fluid loss with respiration.

Does hydration affect your metabolism?

YES! Proper hydration is an important part of the many chemical reactions that take place in your body, including digestion, absorption of nutrients, and waste removal.

During the winter, your body increases heat generation by shivering, which increases your metabolism. Your body also experiences increased water loss via: sweating/skin evaporation, and heavy breathing.

4 Ways to Stay Hydrated This Winter

  • Drink plenty of water.
  • If you play sports, grab the occasional sports drink (replaces electrolytes & carbohydrates).
  • Avoid too many caffeinated beverages.
  • Eat more fruits & vegetables.

How much water/fluids should I consume?

Your daily water intake is really dependent on your activity level and medical condition(s). Most medical professionals agree that you should aim for 48-64 ounces of water daily. You should also sip on water throughout the day to help you stay hydrated so that you don’t feel thirsty.

About Dr. Ryan Murray

Dr. Ryan Murray is a board certified primary care physician with WakeMed Physician Practices. Dr. Murray works out of the Garner Primary Care location, and his current interests include: pediatric & adolescent care, sports & dermatological procedures, & continuity of care with prevention and treatment of acute and chronic conditions.


Four Things to Do Today to Prepare for Winter Weather

Winter has finally arrived in the Triangle.  As Wake County’s largest health system and only Trauma Center, it is our job to help you and your family stay safe and healthy.  Here four things you should do today to ensure you are ready for possible winter weather this weekend.
  1. Sign up for tweets or text messages from @ReadyWake. These messages can be delivered straight to your phone via text message even if you do not have a Twitter account. (Text “Follow ReadyWake” to 40404.  You will receive a text message (from 40404) when @ReadyWake posts an update. To unsubscribe, text “OFF” to @ReadyWake to 40404 at any time.)
  2. Have a plan in place to keep warm just in case the electricity goes out. This means making sure you have an alternate heat source and that you know how to safely use this alternate heat source.
  3. Make sure you have enough food, water and medicine to last for at least three days for all people and pets in your house. This means having at least one gallon of water per person or pet.
  4. If you have to travel and winter weather is in the forecast, make sure you have a full tank of gas as well as a supply of water, food and a blanket in your car. Our area is known for snarled traffic and very long commutes during even minor winter weather events.  If you get stuck on I-40 for 8 hours in traffic, you will be very glad you took a few minutes to prepare.
Additionally, just because there is no snow on the ground right now, does not mean potentially dangerous conditions do not exist.  Extreme cold can be very dangerous for your elderly neighbors.  Take a few minutes to check on them during cold spells to make sure they are safe.   Extreme cold can also mean there is ice on walkways, steps and roads.  Wear appropriate shoes, use handrails when they are available and remove or clean your shoes when you get inside to prevent falls.

Give Blood to Help Hospitalized Patients

One of the best ways you can help a hospitalized patient is to donate blood because one out of every 10 patients entering the hospital will receive a blood transfusion.

Hospitals frequently run short of certain blood types like O negative (the universal donor) and B (a more rare blood type).  If you have either of these blood types, your donation is particularly impactful.

Tomorrow, we are hosting the first of two American Red Cross blood drives and encourage you to make an appointment to give.  Regular donors are encouraged to give, but new donors are always welcome.

WakeMed Cary Hospital
Friday, January 15
10 am to 2:30 pm
Cary Hospital Conference Center
Make an appointment with Cathy Palazzolo at 919-350-2409 or email her at

WakeMed Garner Healthplex
Thursday, February 25
9 am to 1:30 pm

To schedule an appointment, go to and use Sponsor Code “ WakeMed.”


Live Your Healthiest Year Yet

The most popular New Year’s resolution is to get healthy and lose weight.

Make this the year that those resolutions result in real change by following the very sensible advice of dietitians and nutrition scientists around the world.  This advice is summed up in a recent News & Observer article written by WakeMed’s own Parul Kharod.

Parul broke it down into a few key points, including:

  1. Eat more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts. Limit sugar, alcohol and red meat, and avoid processed meats. (Generally follow the guidelines of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee)
  2. Know where your food comes from, how it is produced and its impact on our health.
  3. Do not change your diet based on every new research study.
  4. Be positive – think about not just what to cut out, but also what to add.
  5. Food can and should have flavor.

Follow these few points and live your healthiest lifestyle yet!

If you would like help from Parul or another dietitian to start off on the right track, learn more about our outpatient dietitian services.  Many times these consultations are covered by insurance and are available to you at no additional charge.