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Brief asides


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POSTED: Thursday, September 17, 2009

WE'RE NO. 1

Hawaii drivers tops in buckling up

Buckling up on the road has become second nature in Hawaii, which has the highest seat belt usage rate in the nation. May's “;Click It or Ticket”; campaign showed that nearly 98 percent of motorists used their seat belts, according to the state Department of Transportation. Motorists who use seat belts are far less likely to be killed in or critically injured in crashes, according to national statistics. The annual law enforcement campaign seems to be working in the islands, given that the seat belt usage rate in 2001 was a far lower 82.5 percent.

 

TOO NICE?

Obama urged to show less aloha

Has President Barack Obama's Hawaii upbringing produced a civility that doesn't work in Washington? Washington Post columnist Courtland Milloy suggests as much in explaining Obama's failure to follow through on his threat to “;call out”; anyone who misrepresents his health care proposal. “;The problem is that the Ivy League gentleman from Hawaii appears not to have mastered the coarsened art of the streetwise rebuke and, as a result, he tends to come off as bluffing.”;

 

WE GOT YOUR BACK

Chronic pain can make you feel older

When lifting heavy items off the floor, bend at the knees, not at the waist.

Maintain good posture by standing and sitting in a balanced and neutral position.

Keep active and exercise at least 30 minutes daily.

All of these are expert tips to help prevent back pain, a chronic ailment that afflicts millions of Americans. And they are a timely reminder in light of new research that says chronic pain makes 50-somethings feel more like 80-somethings.

Scientists at the Division of Geriatrics at the University of California, San Francisco, have just finished re-examining data from a 2004 study of 18,531 people over age 49.

“;We found that the abilities of those aged 50 to 59 with pain were far more comparable to subjects aged 80 to 89 without pain, of whom 4 percent were able to jog 1 mile and 55 percent were able to walk several blocks, making pain sufferers appear 20 to 30 years older than non-pain sufferers,”; study leader Kenneth Covinsky says in a report on LiveScience.com.