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Chester Progressive
Chester , California
March 12, 2014     Chester Progressive
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March 12, 2014

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Bulletin; Record, Progressive, Reporter Wednesday, March 12, 2014 7B Germs lurk in stores, hotel rooms Q: Chuck, I'm all for saving the environment, but I heard reusable grocery bags can host quite a few bacteria that can make us sick. Ever read anything about this? --"Bagging the Blues" Huntington Beach A: Last week, I discussed the first three of the top places where you and your loved ones could get sick. They were your work environment, public restrooms and the bank. Today I wilt examine three more of "the germiest hotspots," according to a great article by Paige Fowler in Men's Health, "6 Places You're Mostly Likely to Get Sick." Again, let me summarize her excellent points and add a few more of my own about how to avoid the bacteria that crawl around and multiply in these places that we all frequent most. --Germhot spot No. 4: the grocery. This one may sound like a given, but in addition to holding your favorite foods, your grocery can be a bacteria war zone for potential sicknesses and diseases. Wiping down the handles on shopping carts with sanitizing wipes is a must, and most supermarkets offer them now at their entrances. But here's something else to be careful of: placing your children on the shopping cart seats or even inside the cart (which is widely done), where packages of raw meat may have leaked their juices. Lola Stamm, an epidemiologist at the University of North Carolina, warned for your protection and for the protection of others: "Wrap meat packages in a plastic bag before putting them in your cart." A piece of advice that leads me to a not-so-obvious microbial culprit carrier in supermarkets and your house: reusable shopping bags. I understand they're better for the environment, but have you ever considered the germs that jL C-FORCE HEALTH AND FITNESS CHUCK NORRIS info@creators.corn are also placed into the bags -- meat juices, loose produce, etc. -- and then fester there until you return to the store? (The one plus about plastic bags is that they often are never used again and are discarded -- bacteria and all.) According to a University of Arizona study, in Men's Health's words, "ninety percent of shoppers don't wash these bags regularly .... Researchers found coliform bacteria -- from raw meat -- and E. coli in nearly every reusable bag they sampled." Wow! The point is clear: Make sure you wash your reusable bags in between each trip to your grocery. Washing them in a washing machine on hot is obviously best. And to avoid cross-contamination, make sure you use separate and distinct bags for meats and produce. --Germ hot spot No. 5: hotel rooms. You knew this one was coming: television remote controls. But don't forget those light switches, too. Both are bacteria-bolstering communities, according to a University of Houston study. So always pack sanitizing wipes when loading your luggage -- or just keep a pack in your suitcase. And make sure you clean hotel room surfaces every day, because even maids can be sick or transfer germs from other rooms if they're not using a different pair of gloves to clean each room. Even your maid's cleaning carts can transfer bacteria from one room to the next. That's a good reason to hang the "Don't disturb" sign on your door if you're staying for only a couple of days in a hotel; that way, no one else enters your room but you. You can always ask for and pick up clean towels yourself. And though bedsheets can be changed daily in hotel rooms, I remember seeing a "60 Minutes" expos6 once on hotel bed covers that are placed over the sheets. Those tend not to be washed or changed very often. What investigators discovered under infrared light on the surface of the bed covers was a bit much for my stomach to list here. Let's just say that I'd stick to sitting in sanitized hotel chairs if I'm not sure the bed cover has been washed or replaced recently. Many upscale hotels are now replacing bed covers, as well as sheets, daily. Check with hotel management about cleaning policies before you check in, asking particularly whether those cleaning the rooms put on a new pair of gloves before they clean each room and how often they change the bed covers. --Germ hot spot No. 6: gym weight equipment. This is a tough one for me because I love my gym and use it often. Men's Health reported: "One study in the Clinical Journal of Sports Medicine found cold-causing viruses on 63 percent of the gym equipment. Researchers also discovered that weight equipment was contaminated significantly more often than aerobic equipment-- 73 percent versus 51 percent. Even worse: Disinfecting twice a day didn't do anything to lower the virus count since plenty of people still use them between wipe-downs." I'm certainly not saying to avoid local gyms. I'm a big advocate of them. Again, the point here is that you need to bring along your own sanitizing wipes and sanitizer. If you keep a small packet of gyms wipes by the towel you use to wipe your sweat, you can inconspicuously pull one out every time you use a different piece of equipment. Quickly wipe down the weights or piece of equipment before you use it, and then stay there in between reps or sets so others don't use it. If you feel pushed for others to use it, good! The faster you get through your routine the better the cardio, generally. And here's where it gets tricky, because some might think wearing gym gloves is the answer. Actually, Japanese researchers discovered that "staph bacteria found on weights and machines bind to polyester, the material used in many gloves," according to Men's Health. And what often happens from there is that we wipe our brow or mouth with the gloves and then become infected. The best advice is simply don't use gloves, unless you're working out at home -- and even then it's best to ditch them. The added plus in doing so is that it will actually strengthen your grip and forearms. Wipe your sweat with your forearm or clean towel, and just be careful not to touch your hands to your face while at the gym. Potential bacteria and germs at public gyms are one more reason to consider buying home gym equipment, such as some free weights or the Total Gym, which my wife, Gena, and I regularly use and sponsor. At least you know at home who's been using your equipment -- unless, of course, the kids have the neighbors over! Remember that when it comes to germs and bacteria, the balance in life is found in prevention and precaution, but not in paranoia. Write to Chuck Norris ( with questions about health and fitness. Copyright 2014 Chuck Norris Distributed by Amazing Animals "Silly Sally" dances with owner Pat Ball. Fairgrounds hosts e-waste event The tradition of "Cleanest and Greenest" fairground in the West continues. Once again, the Plumas-Sierra County Fairgrounds go "green" by sponsoring an e-waste recycling event May 2 and 3 at the fairgrounds. Most electronic waste can be brought to the collection center located just out@ide the front gate from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Acceptable items include televisions, monitors, LCD screens, plasma screens, laptops, computer towers, printers, copiers, fax machines, calculators, stereos, speakers, cellphones, keyboards and telephones. Items that cannot be accepted are batteries, household appliances, paint or VHS tapes. They can accept microwave ovens, but no other appliances. There is no charge to dispose of these items and the fair is paid a fee for holding the event based on the number of items collected, especially monitors and televisions. Those interested in volunteering to help, or who have questions, may call the fair office at 283-6272. Advertising works! MR. B'S 213 Danny ct., Quincy (530) 283-1935 Rowdy and Mr. B Mr. B's Auto Techtronlcs 530-283-1935 Mr. B's Auto Techtronics in East Quincy has been advertising with Feather Publishing for 20+ years now, since 1992. We feel that advertising with the local news- paper has been more beneficial to the success of our busi- ness than advertising anywhere else. We have just recently started advertising in both print and on the internet. We did this in hopes that it would make our business presence more visible to our community as well as to the surrounding areas. What we have found, is that customers are calling regularly to ask about the "Specials" that they saw advertised. We have more "drop-in" business daily and are averaging more new customers than in the past. One of the many reasons we are happy and successful with our advertising, is due to our relationship with the staff at Feather Publishing. The crew at Feather Publishing have always been professional, friendly and helpful, while going above and beyond to meet our needs. Old Man Winter is Upon Us! Get Ready for oM Weather & SAVE! I akk llere For BIG SAVINGS! I O Mr. B's 213 Danny CE, Quincy (S$O) R3-1g3S 287 Lawrence Street, Quincy, CA 283-0800 B.ECOR, D Greenville, CA 258-3115 t '  :. Westwood PinePress P.O. Box 790, Westwood, CA 258-3115 135 Main Street, Chester, CA 258-3115 100 Grand Ave., Susanville, CA 257-5321 96 E. Sierra (Hwy 70), Portola, CA 832-4646 Need Help With Your Medi-Cal or Health Care Plan? Plumas County Public Health Agency is working with Legal Services of Northern California, a nonprofit organization that provides health care advocacy, to help anyone with problems related to health insurance or health care coverage such as: Getting health insurance Accessing care with the insurance they have, such as filling prescriptions, seeing a doctor or specialist, getting approval for procedures such as surgery Accessing transportation to medical services, which is covered by Medi-Cal managed care health plans Ensure that you receive all medically necessary covered services for which your health care coverage is responsible. If you need an advocate to help you get the care you need, Liza Thantranon, Senior Staff Attorney, will be providing no cost services and consultation in Plumas County at the following locations: Quincy, Wednesday ~ March 12, 2014 9:00 am - 2:00 pm Plumas County Public Health Agency - 270 County Hospital Rd. (Meeting Day Contact:Audrey Rice, 530-283-6337) 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm Quincy Drug - 493 W. Main Street (Meeting Day Contact:Amanda Oesentz, 530-283-0480) Portola, Thursday ~ March 13, 2014 9:00 am - 2:00 pm Eastern Plumas Health Care - 500 First Avenue, Admin. Building (Meeting Day Contact: Sarah Skeels, 530-832-6568) Chester/Greenville, Friday ~ March 14, 2014 9:00 am-2:00 pm Lake Almanor Clinic - 199 Reynolds Road, Chester (Meeting Day Contact: Debbie Brownrigg 530-258-2073) 3:00 pm - 5:30pro Village Drug - 225 Main Street, Greenville (Meeting Day Contact: Kevin Goss 530-284-6618) Greenville, Saturday ~ March 15, 2014 10:00 am - 12:00 pm Village Drug - 225 Main Street,. Greenville (Meeting Day Contact: LaVonne, 530-284-6618) Please call Plumas County Public Health Agency at (530) 283-6337 for an appointment at one of the above location,s. Please let us know if you need transportation. Walk-ins will be accommodated. OR Call Legal Services of Northern California for No Cost Services and Consultation 888-354-4474 or 916-551-2103 and ask for Liza