What a great way to start a day! Jim Palmer was our chef in the greenroom. IHOP pancakes were on the menu and were delicious. If you go to an IHOP on today, you can get a free short stack and they hope you'll donate some money for First Book, a program to buy books for low-income children. It's Shrove Tuesday, which means I’ll be having pancakes for dinner too! We have a big pancake dinner at church. Jim Palmer explained the dinner originated hundreds of years ago when people wanted to use up the supplies that wouldn't be used during Lent.

How can you have a healthier life? If you were watching this morning, you saw that I ate a one-by-one inch piece of dark chocolate. The Dutch studied hundreds of men over 65 and found that eating cocoa reduced the risks from cholesterol and other chemicals linked to cancer, heart disease and more. The good stuff you get from chocolate includes antioxidants and flavonols. So, I'm eating chocolate for its medicinal benefits. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

How can you live longer? Be happy! Seriously, if you are optimistic you lower your risk of cardiovascular death. Again the Dutch are doing this study. They must have a lot of researchers there. Anyway, see if you agree with statements like, "I do not look forward to what lies ahead for me in the years to come" or "My days seem to be passing by slowly." People who disagree are most likely optimists. A positive attitude may also help people who suffer from heart disease caused by narrowed arteries.

How can you keep your kids healthier? Double check when your pediatrician prescribes antibiotics for your child. Sometimes parents push doctors to do it, while other times doctors do it on their own. The bottom line is that kids are often taking antibiotics that do nothing to help their illness. Instead, they work against the child by making them more resistant to the antibiotics later. Because the children have taken antibiotics too frequently, it stops working. For any health questions you can check out the health section on the FOX Web site.

And, if you'd like to help out several great charities including a shelter for abused women and children, please consider purchasing my book, "Going Places" — 100 percent of the sales go to charity. The book features 70 people ranging from Tiki Barber to Carol Alt to Dr. Henry Kissinger talking about advice that changed their lives. Young adults will be motivated by the inspirational lessons learned by these incredible individuals. Adults will find information they never knew about people like Geraldo Rivera who talks about his time in a gang, Bill O'Reilly who discusses the book that changed his life, and George Foreman who details how you can succeed in anything you do. You can purchase it through www.hillbooks.com.

Have a wonderful day!
E.D.

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