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'Twas the Week Before Christmas and Santa's Due for a Check-Up
Date:12/17/2008

Santa Claus Declared "Fit for Duty" at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas

DALLAS, Dec. 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Santa Claus, a.k.a. Kris Kringle, was declared "fit for duty" yesterday at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas after undergoing his annual physical. At the news conference to announce the results of his exam, doctors gave him a clean bill of health and said not to worry...he is in good shape to make his trip around the world next week.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20081217/DC52860)

Jane Sadler, M.D., Santa's physician, said that despite a slightly high blood sugar level -- most likely due to over-consumption of sweets through the years -- Santa is otherwise in excellent health.

"Instead of cookies, maybe families should leave him some fruits and vegetables this year or perhaps nuts high in omega-three fatty acids," says Dr. Sadler. "Anything high in protein or rich in nutrients is a good alternative. Leave the milk, but make sure it's low-fat," she adds.

Like many annual physicals, Santa's exam included a weight check, blood pressure screening, nutritional counseling and a conversation about family medical history in addition to annual health screenings for heart disease and cancer. Since Santa is not a smoker and exercises at least 30 minutes a day, he is considered in general good health. However, Dr. Sadler says that his excess abdominal fat or "bowl full of jelly" is an indicator for metabolic syndrome -- a combination of elevated blood pressure and cholesterol and high blood glucose levels.

"Metabolic syndrome is extremely common, especially in men, so I have recommended to Santa that he increase his physical activity level and maintain a healthier diet," explains Dr. Sadler, a family medicin
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SOURCE Baylor Health Care System
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