Called akwadu in Ghana, baked bananas flavored with orange juice, coconut, peanuts and cinnamon are a sweet, economical and nourishing finale for a spicy meal. And, they’re a simple way to make fruit part of an everyday supper or a special dinner. This same recipe, with bananas cut both lengthwise and crosswise, makes a great topping for waffles or French toast. (Food trivia: peanuts are called “groundnuts” in West Africa.) Plentiful in tropical and subtropical regions of the world — and easily available throughout the United States — bananas are kitchen staples. Being versatile, bananas make delicious breakfast smoothies and parfaits, banana bread, and creamy puddings…and they’re the perfect whole fruit for pack-and-go lunches and snacks. Keep bananas on hand!
- 4 medium ripe bananas, cut in half lengthwise
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons soft margarine, melted
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup low-fat lemon Greek yogurt
- * 2 tablespoons chopped peanuts, for garnish
Cooking Note * As another option, serve with ice cream or frozen yogurt.
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Arrange bananas side-by-side in a 9-by-9-inch baking dish.
- Combine orange juice, lemon juice and margarine in a small bowl. Add brown sugar and cinnamon. Blend well.
- Drizzle orange juice mixture over bananas, then baste to coat bananas. Sprinkle with coconut.
- Bake for 10 minutes, until sauce is bubbling but bananas are softened but keep their shape.
- Serve warm. Spoon sauce over bananas. Top with yogurt; garnish with peanuts.
- Calories: 260
- Calories from fat: 90
- Total fat: 10g
- Saturated fat: 3g
- Trans fat: 1g
- Cholesterol: 5mg
- Sodium 100mg
- Total carbohydrate: 43g
- Dietary fiber: 4g
- Sugars: 26g
- Protein: 4g
For over two decades every night 63 year-old Darrell Holmquist’s sleep was always interrupted. His road to a restful sleep was discovered in an unusual way because Darrell wasn’t overweight, didn’t smoke or over indulge in alcohol, which are many of the common causes to sleepless nights. His optometrist recommended Darrell to see his primary care physician after learning of his sleepless nights and then discovering the blood vessels behind his eyes were in poor condition.
“I have glaucoma and I recently learned that research has shown a link with people who have glaucoma and those who sleep poorly,” said Holmquist, who retired after 33 years of teaching history at Joliet Central and Lincoln-Way East and Central High Schools. “So I definitely wanted to reduce the chances of my glaucoma worsening, so I immediately made an appointment with my doctor.” It was then determined Darrell had bad circulation in the back of his eyes which qualified him for a sleep study. At this point, his doctor referred him to have his sleep study at the Silver Cross Sleep Disorders Center located in Pavilion A at I-355 and Route 6 in New Lenox. Here, it was determined that he indeed had mild sleep apnea.
“Sleep apnea is a common disorder in which you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep,” says Dr. Phillip Leung, board certified pulmonologist and medical director of the Silver Cross Sleep Disorders Center. “These breathing pauses can last from a few seconds to minutes and often occur 5 to 30 times or more an hour.” During Darrell’s sleep study, he had 18 breathing pauses every hour.
Sleep apnea usually is a chronic condition that disrupts sleep making you tired during the day. If left untreated, sleep apnea can increase the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, obesity, and diabetes; make arrhythmias, or irregular heartbeats, more likely; and increase the chance of having work-related or driving accidents.
While at the Silver Cross Sleep Disorders Center, Darrell spent the night in a private home-like room where he had his own bathroom, calming décor, and comfortable bed to help put him at ease. He spent the next 8 hours undergoing a polysomnographic test and a sleep study that provided a detailed picture of his entire sleep cycle. The study allowed technicians to analyze Darrell’s exact sleep pattern, from the onset of sleep through the 4 normal levels of sleep, to breathing, oxygen levels, heartbeat, movement and snoring activity. The next morning it was determined that he had mild sleep apnea and required a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine to help control his breathing while he sleeps.
“My experience at the Silver Cross Sleep Disorders Center was terrific,” said Holmquist who resides in New Lenox. “The technician Terri, did everything with such thoughtful care to make me comfortable so my test results were reliable and valid. And the facility is gorgeous. It felt like a fancy hotel.”
Advice to Other Patients
“I would definitely recommend other people who aren’t sleeping well to get a sleep study because it will change their lives,” said Holmquist. “I no longer need to take afternoon naps because of the high quality of my night’s sleep. I am awake after sleeping, and can continue my hobbies of riding my bike 7 miles a day!”
Holmquist also encourages new CPAP machine users to be patient when getting used to sleeping with the mask and machine. “The key to successfully using the CPAP machine is to give yourself time to adjust to sleeping with the equipment and find the right mask that allows you to sleep comfortable in any position,” stated Holmquist.
In addition to diagnosing and treating sleep apnea, the Center specializes in sleep related breathing disorders, insomnia, sleep related movement disorders, and narcolepsy. “We are committed to helping our patients receive the correct treatment that will enable them to rest properly, so they can have a better quality of life,” says Dr. Leung.
If you or someone you love is experiencing a sleep problem, we invite you to contact the Silver Cross Sleep Disorders Center for an initial consultation. For more information, call 1-815-300-REST (7378) or visit www.silvercross.org/sleepdisordercenter.
According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute about in 1 in 3 adults in the United States has hypertension, also known as high blood pressure. Silver Cross Hospital is offering a lecture on hypertension that will educate area residents on what makes them at risk for hypertension and what to do if they find themselves with the condition.
Dr. Daniel Ramirez, internal medicine physician, will present a free program on Lowering Hypertension, on Tuesday, May 28, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. in the Silver Cross Hospital Conference Center. Hypertension increases your risk of heart disease, kidney disease, and even stroke. Dr. Ramirez, will discuss possible causes, complications, and treatment of hypertension. Register to attend this free program online or by calling 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).
What is Hypertension?
Hypertension or high blood pressure is a serious condition that can increase your risk for heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and other critical illnesses. Blood pressure is the amount of force blood pushes against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps blood. If this pressure increases and remains high over time, it can result in high blood pressure or hypertension, and damage the body in many ways.
“Hypertension usually has no symptoms and often goes undetected for years causing harm to your heart and other parts of your body,” said Daniel Ramirez, M.D., internal medicine physician on staff at Silver Cross Hospital. “For this reason it is so important to have an annual physical exam with your doctor to determine if you have high blood pressure or if you are at risk for having hypertension.”
Since blood pressure tends to rise with age, following a healthy lifestyle can often delay or prevent people from high blood pressure. People who have high blood pressure can take steps to control it and reduce the risk for related health problems. Many people can improve or maintain a normal blood pressure by following a proper diet (reducing the amount of salt in their diet), maintaing a healthy weight, not smoking and limiting their alcohol intake. However, others may need the help of medication to keep their blood pressure at a healthy level.
Along with several hundred families and business leaders, the Silver Cross Women and Infant Services Birthing Center employees and their families participated in the 2013 March of Dimes 3.2 mile March for Babies on April 21 at Joliet West High School in Joliet. This annual walk March for Babies is the nation’s oldest walk fundraiser honoring babies born healthy and those who need help to survive and thrive. The Silver Cross team received recognition as the Top Corporate Team by raising $2,245 for the 2013 March of Dimes Walk.
By walking in March for Babies, participants give hope to the more than half a million babies born too soon each year. The money raised supports community programs that help moms have healthy full-term pregnancies. And it funds research to find answers to the problems that threaten our babies. Supporters of March Dimes have been walking since 1970 and have raised an incredible $2 billion to benefit all babies.
Funds raised by March for Babies in Illinois help support community service, education, prenatal wellness programs, research grants, newborn intensive care unit (NICU) family support programs and advocacy efforts to help improve the health of the nation’s mothers and babies.
The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide and its premier event, March for Babies, the March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. For the latest resources and information, visit www.marchofdimes.com or www.nacersano.org.
About the new Silver Cross Women and Infant Birthing Center
Silver Cross has brought together cutting-edge medical technology with spa-like amenities to make the birthing experience all the more memorable. On Feb. 26, 2012, the new Birthing Center opened at the Silver Cross Replacement Hospital located at I-355 and Route 6 in New Lenox. The Center has 12 luxurious birthing suites designed for labor, delivery and recovery so parents can have the convenience of staying in the same room through recovery followed by a stay in one of 30 private mother-baby suites. Each private suite is fully-equipped with a bathroom with a shower and immersion tub to help with labor pains, blanket warmer, refrigerator, wireless internet access, 30” flat screen TV system, and a comfortable sofa-sleeper so family members can stay around the clock.
Furthermore, a variety of pain relief methods are available 24 hours a day provided by an anesthesiologist. And for deliveries requiring surgery, there are two complete cesarean suites. Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital neonatologists and pediatric hospitalist continue to be onsite 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. And if needed, Children’s pediatric cardiologists are available to analyze a baby’s echocardiogram in real time through a video linkage with Silver Cross. For more information about the new Silver Cross Women and Infant Birthing Center, visit www.silvercross.org. For a referral to an obstetrician/gynecologist or pediatrician on staff at Silver Cross, visit www.silvercross.org or call 1-888-660-HEAL.
According to a recent report, in 2012 Silver Cross Hospital provided over $47 million in community benefit. Over $10.3 million was in straight charity care in which Silver Cross does not expect payment from patients. An additional $29 million in uncompensated services was given through the government’s Medicare and Medicaid programs. Plus, nearly 40% of all patients treated in the Silver Cross Emergency Department in 2012 were uninsured or on public aid.
“Silver Cross has shown yet again that it is committed to caring for everyone in our community, regardless of whether or not a person can afford to pay for it,” said Margie Woods, Chairperson of the Silver Cross Healthy Community Commission—a not-for-profit group of local leaders devoted to improving access to healthcare, workforce development and redevelopment of Silver Cross Hospital’s eastside Joliet campus.
Pledge to Provide Free Care
In 2008, the Hospital pledged to provide at least $4 million a year for ten years in charity care to serve the poor and uninsured in Will County. This was the first $40 million charity commitment made by any hospital in the State of Illinois. In the past five years, Silver Cross has already given out almost $40.1 million in free care to Will County patients. That number reflects the actual cost of health care provided free of charge to patients. It does not include shortfalls in payments from the state’s Medicaid program for the poor or the Medicare program for seniors and disabled citizens. These programs only cover a fraction of Silver Cross Hospital’s cost for treating patients.
Silver Cross provides financial assistance to patients who maintain a household income up to 200% above the Federal Poverty Level. In addition, the hospital provides a 40% discount off of charges to all uninsured patients. Applications for assistance are available by contacting the Patients Accounts Department at (815) 300-7087. English and Spanish speaking financial counselors are available.
“We want to make sure everyone in our community has access to quality health care regardless of a patient’s income or insurance status,” said Paul Pawlak, President and CEO of Silver Cross Hospital. “As a not-for-profit health care provider, we take our mission seriously and are committed to providing quality care to all our patients and the community.”
Subsidized Services, Screenings and Scholarships
In addition to charity care and government-sponsored indigent care, Silver Cross gave more than $7.5 million in other community benefit last year which included free and subsidized health services, programs and screenings to more than 35,000 people in Will County.
“More than 3,800 people took advantage of free or discounted heart screenings, mammograms, and other important prevention and diagnostic tests last year,” said Pawlak. “By partnering with local churches, community centers and schools, we were able to get out to the people who are most at risk for chronic and debilitating diseases.”
Silver Cross is also helping to save lives serving as the resource hospital for the area’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS) system. Silver Cross gave over $520,000 to provide paramedic training, continuing education, and monitoring of ambulance services in Will and Grundy counties.
In addition to providing funding to educate first-responders, through the Silver Cross Healthy Community Commission, the Hospital also awarded over $240,000 in healthcare-related scholarships, workforce development grants and quality of life initiatives. Over 125 individuals associated with local organizations such as Joliet Community Action Network’s Male Mentoring Program, NAACP, Hispanic/Latino Coalition, Community Service Council and the Harvey Brooks Foundation were beneficiaries of Silver Cross’ investment in the community.
Silver Cross is also helping to increase the quality of life in Will County by partnering with the National Hook-up of Black Women to promote literacy. Over the past few years, the Hospital donated funding, furniture, computers and held several book drives to establish four Reading Rooms on the eastside of Joliet. At the Reading Room, children and parents are able to swap, borrow or take a book to keep in their own personal libraries.
“It has been proven that reading is the foundation to all future success,” said Lou Ann Johnson, President of Joliet’s National Hook-Up of Black Women. “Unfortunately children who fall behind at an early age never make up the educational gap and illiteracy limits their future employment options. The NHBW & Silver Cross Reading Rooms provide children in daycare through grade school an opportunity to get books and enjoy the adventures of reading, while increasing their literacy level.”
“Through our donation to the Reading Room, we are ensuring healthier lifestyles for the residents in the communities we serve,” said Pawlak. “Increasing children’s literacy levels empowers them to make better life choices related to nutrition, family and career goals.”
To learn more about the Reading Room and other ways Silver Cross is providing benefit to the Community, click here for a copy of the 2012 Community Benefit Report or contact Leslie Newbon, Senior Community Relations Coordinator at (815) 300-1096.
The Will County Union of King’s Daughters and Sons is seeking high quality artisans for the Silver Crossings Vendor/Craft Fair on Saturday, November 2, 2013 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Silver Cross Hospital, Pavilion A, 1890 Silver Cross Blvd., New Lenox.
Interested in Selling Your Creative Unique Goods? To be considered as an exhibitor, vendors should call (815) 729-1264 or email firstname.lastname@example.org by May 31, 2013 for an application. Vendors’ booth space is approximately 8 feet for a $75 fee, and booth locations will be assigned by the Silver Crossings Vendor/Craft Committee. Flat bed carts will be available to assist vendors with unloading goods. Exhibitors are required to stay the full hours of the fair and set-up is Friday, Nov. 1 from 4 to 8 p.m. The Silver Crossings Craft Fair will be promoted via newspapers, hospital website and direct mail postcards to past attendees. Please no jewelry vendors.
Admission is free to the public. Proceeds from the Silver Crossings Vendor/Craft Fair will benefit the inpatient Silver Cross diabetes program, one of the area’s first American Diabetes Association’s recognized quality comprehensive diabetes management program. For more information, call Volunteer Services at Silver Cross Hospital at (815) 300-7117.
Today, Dr. Nahla Mehri performed a hysterectomy through one tiny incision in the belly button using a robot. This new, innovative procedure called Single-Site™ daVinci® Hysterectomy is currently only available at 15 hospitals throughout the country including the new Silver Cross Hospital in New Lenox. Silver Cross is one of only four hospitals in the entire Midwest where skilled surgeons are using the daVinci robotic surgical system to perform hysterectomies through a single incision with virtually scarless results.
“Neither robotic surgery nor single-incision surgery is new, but combining the two to perform a hysterectomy requires additional training and special equipment,” says Dr. Merhi, Co-Director of the Center of Excellence for Minimally Invasive Gynecology at Silver Cross Hospital. “To be one of the first hospitals in the U.S. to offer this technically advanced surgery demonstrates Silver Cross’ leadership in providing women with the most up-to-date minimally invasive surgical options.”
Dr. Nahla Merhi is one of a small group of gynecologists in the country who has received training to perform the surgery. She has performed over 200 hysterectomies using the daVinci robot and is the first physician on staff at Silver Cross Hospital to perform the Single-Site daVinci Hysterectomy procedure.
“Single-Site instruments used with the daVinci platform are the next step in the evolution of surgical technologies,” Dr. Merhi said. “We are truly excited to be a leader today in the surgical treatment of tomorrow.”
Minimal Scarring—Faster Recovery
For most women, Single-Site daVinci hysterectomy offers virtually scarless results, minimal pain, low blood loss, fast recovery, a short hospital stay and high patient satisfaction. The surgery can be performed in about one hour with a typical hospital stay of less than 24 hours.
During the procedure, the surgeon sits comfortably at a console, viewing a 3D, high-definition image of the patient’s anatomy. The surgeon uses controls below the viewer to move the instrument arms and camera. In real-time, the system translates the surgeon’s hand, wrist and finger movements into more precise movements of the miniaturized instruments inside the patient.
Unlike traditional robotic surgeries requiring three to five small incisions, this new technology allows for a single incision in the belly button. Here, instruments are placed to treat chronic pain, heavy bleeding, non-cancerous fibroids, endometriosis, and prolapse by surgically removing the uterus, know as a hysterectomy.
Many women who require a hysterectomy are candidates for the robotic, single-incision surgery. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, hysterectomy is the second most common surgical procedure for women in the United States, and an estimated one-third of all women will have a hysterectomy by age 60.
Advanced Robotic Procedures in a New Hospital
In addition to Single-Site daVinci Hysterectomy, Silver Cross Hospital offers various types of robotic-assisted surgeries including Single-Site daVinci Cholecystectomy (gallbladder removal). Since April 2012, 20 physicians on staff have performed nearly 400 robotic-assisted surgeries for urology, colorectal, digestive and gynecological diseases.
In November, Silver Cross was recently designated as a Center of Excellence in Minimally Invasive Gynecology (COEMIG) by the AAGL, the leading association of minimally invasive gynecologic surgeons worldwide, and Surgical Review Corporation (SRC). Achieving the COEMIG designation signifies the Hospital’s ability to consistently deliver the safest, most advanced and comprehensive gynecologic surgical services to women across the region in a new, state-of-the-art 289 bed facility. These patients are cared for in the Silver Cross Procedural Care Unit (PCU). The PCU is equipped with 11 state-of-the-art surgical suites specially designed for minimally invasive procedures, private pre and post procedure patient rooms, and a spacious lounge for family and friends.
For a referral to a physician who performs Single-Site daVinci Hysterectomy or other robotic surgeries, call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325) or visit click here.