Exercise to Improve Your Memory
Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

TaiChiResearchers have known for quite a long time that exercise is good for your heart and body.  However, studies now suggest that what’s good for your body is also good for your brain, particularly in the case of older adults.  Indeed, a number of studies have provided evidence that physical exercise helps reduce age-related decline in cognitive function, and may prevent, or at least delay, the onset of dementia. 


But how does regular exercise improve memory and other cognitive functions?  First of all, exercise has clear effects on cardiovascular fitness, increasing the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the whole body, including the brain.  Furthermore, exercise helps control blood glucose levels, which is important to mental health, because glucose is the primary source of energy for the brain.  Additionally, regular exercise has been shown to reduce stress levels, which, in turn, inhibits the release of cortisol, a chemical which has been shown to impair memory.  Finally, studies suggest that regular exercise may actually enhance the effects of helpful brain chemicals and even slow the loss of brain tissue which typically begins in your 40s.


So, if you want to sharpen your memory, it’s time to get up and start exercising.  Walking is especially good for your brain, as it is not strenuous, so your leg muscles don’t take up extra oxygen and glucose like they do during other forms of exercise.  As you walk, you effectively oxygenate your brain.  Walking and other aerobic exercises also help to promote healthy sleep habits, which are important because sleep is necessary for memory consolidation.


Finally, exercise is also important to help deal with stress, particularly when you are dealing with the loss of a loved one.  Exercise will release endorphins, which can help you feel better, can give you some personal time to think and clear your head, and enable you to remember all the good times.

Friday, May 21st, 2010

Anderson-McQueen Family Tribute Centers along with a handful of local St. Petersburg, Fla., businesses, is working to highlight the importance of proper flag retirement this Memorial Day weekend—allowing the general public to discard worn or tattered flags in the respectable manner in which they deserve.  According to the United States Code– Title 4, Chapter 1, Section 8: “The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.”

Anderson-McQueen is proud to provide a flag retirement service for the Tampa Bay area.  Flag retirement boxes used to collect flags that have reached the end of their service will be cremated in accordance with federal guidelines courtesy of Anderson-McQueen. Those ashes will then be placed at the soon-to-be-completed veteran’s memorial located at their Northeast St. Petersburg location.

“It is so very important that we give this, the emblem of freedom and sacrifice the honor that it deserves, especially on Memorial Day,” says John McQueen of Anderson-McQueen.  “We hope that through this initiative we can not only educate our community as to the importance of proper flag disposal but also provide them with a convenient and easy way to do so.”

Permanent St. Petersburg drop off locations include:

  • Mariner’s Car Wash  at 3338 4th Street, North
  • Ace Hardware – at 2739 Dr Martin Luther King Jr Street, North
  • Anderson-McQueen Family Tribute Center locations:

Northeast St. Petersburg Family Tribute Center
2201 Dr. M.L. King Street North
St. Petersburg FL 33704
Telephone: (727) 822-2059

Tyrone Family Tribute Center
7820 38th Avenue North
St. Petersburg FL 33710
Telephone: (727) 347-6636

Special Memorial week drop off locations begins on May 24 through June 3 include:

  • Publix  in the Northeast Shopping Center – 200 37th Avenue,  North
  • Northeast Presbyterian Church – at  4400 Shore Acres Boulevard NE
Happy 100th birthday to you!
Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

Suncoast Hospice is having a birthday party for all Pinellas County residents who have reached the age of 100 or older.More than 300 centenarians and their guests have been invited to enjoy food, entertainment and and opportunity to swap stories from the last 100 years.

May 6, 2010
1 to 3 p.m.

Suncoast Hospice Community Service Center
The Gathering Place
5771 Roosevelt Blvd.
Clearwater, FL 33760
(727) 467-7423

For information, visit thehospice.org.

Remembering Marine Corporal Jonathan Porto
Thursday, March 25th, 2010

It was our deepest honor to serve the family of Marine Corporal Jonathan Porto who was killed in Afghanistan on March 14th. Hundreds of Tampa Bay residents lined the procession route from MacDill Air Force Base to our Northeast St. Petersburg Tribute Center.

Special thanks to David Gray who produced this video.

Your Head Knows What Your Heart Doesn’t Feel
Friday, February 26th, 2010

Your brain understands the reality of death.  It reminds you that you are indeed still here, while your loved one is not.  Your brain gives you the ability to understand the logical aspects of death, and it helps you to move forward as you continue living your life.

However, the heart has no brain cells.  The heart feels the absence of someone loved.  The heart remembers love shared, dreams unfulfilled and words unspoken.  The heart yearns for what the brain knows to be impossible.  With every significant injury, whether physical, emotional or spiritual, healing requires time, usually more time than we ever imagined.

If you’ve ever experienced a surgical procedure, you know that the pain is very real even if the scar can’t be seen.  We become protective of the part of our body that bears the scar because if that tender part is bumped or nudged, the pain can begin anew. Even when our body is completely healed, the scar lingers, sort of a badge of courage, reminding us of what we have lived through and reinforcing that we are not the same person we were before the surgery.

Our heart is no different. Grief is an emotional surgery, and we grieve the way we loved. We may appear fine on the outside, but the pain of death is alive inside.  Yes, the pain does lessen and hearts do heal, but a scar remains.  Our scar can be bumped in many ways, at births, weddings and graduations – times when the absence of our loved one may be felt strongly.

Certain scents can “bump” our scar and remind us of what was. Music can nudge your scar, especially when you hear your loved one’s favorite song or a hymn.  An unrelated death can open your original scar and produce pain. The things that nudge or bump will be unique to you and aren’t necessarily bad. Yes, we shed tears, miss and yearn for our loved one, but the important part is that we remember.  Remembering gives us new hope.

Memories can be held close in our hearts, and no one or nothing can take them away. Love does not die, people do, so you can move on into your grief journey, take the bumps and bouts of grief and keep your loved one in your heart forever.

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