After the Weird Science panel at Philcon on Sunday, I met The Gryphon for lunch, which was my only opportunity before my two back-to-back panels in the afternoon. We were in good company: The Cheshire Cat and The Paper were seated at the table next to us, and voice actors Amy Howard Wilson and her husband, David Wilson (no relation), were on the other side of us.
(from left) Muriel Hykes, Jared Axelrod (hidden), James Prego and me
(from left) Muriel Hykes, Jared Axelrod, James Prego and me
My 1 p.m. panel was:
Eat Right, Exercise, Die Anyway... Healthy Living For Fans
In general, fans tend to be a rather... sedentary... group. What simple things can we do to improve our health and life a better life?
James Prego (mod), Alyce Wilson, Jared Axelrod
In addition, James Prego had invited Muriel Hykes to participate in the panel, since they had both been on a panel at noon about obesity. She is a nutritionist, while Prego is a naturopathic doctor, an adjunct professor of biology at Molloy College and a board member of the New York Association of Naturoapthic Doctors. Axelrod and I could both speak from our experiences of having lost and maintained a large amount of weight loss (in my case, 70 pounds before I got pregnant!).
We had a pretty big audience for the smaller rooms, about 10-15. We also had a good balance on the panel, allowing us to speak about topics from a variety of approaches. Between the four of us, we shared some good. Among the key points were that you should be careful when eating in a restaurant, and to cook at home as much as possible. If you do eat out, we recommended paying attention to portion sizes and boxing anything that you can't eat. If that's not possible, it's better to leave some food behind than to force yourself to eat food your body doesn't need.
Prego stressed the importance of getting enough sleep and staying hydrated, and Hykes recommended paying attention to the nutritional values of foods. We also provided tips on getting more active: finding activities you enjoy, so that they're easier to maintain, and working extra exercise into your regular routine, such as taking stairs when possible, and parking a bit further away from your destination (provided it's a safe, well-lit area).
I also handed out some Web sites I recommend for anyone seeking to improve their lifestyle towards a healthier way of living.
Tips on selecting healthy foods: cooking and eating out.
Online database of nutritional information.
Calorie Requirements per Day
A formula for determining how many calories you need to maintain or lose weight.
National Institutes for Health
Assessment tools, BMI calculator and recommendations.
Online quiz provides suggestions for improving health, lengthening lifespan.
Based on studies of cultures with longevity, provides healthy lifestyle suggestions.
And though I neglected to include it on my handout, I'll add:
Quiz providing suggestions for easy ways to cut calorie consumption.
The audience was really engaged, some more than others. One fellow seemed to question everything we said, and even our explanations did not satisfy him. This happened even when a doctor in the audience, raised his hand, stated his credentials as a physician, and agreed with our points. I suppose you just can't please everyone all the time. Still, I hope he took away some useful information from the panel.
The rest of the audience, when they asked questions, seemed to be genuinely seeking our input, and between the four of us, we could either supply them with answers or point them towards resources where they could find them.
Some people need more convincing than others.