GFM Network News


Advertising would have you believe flavoured water beverages are just the thing you need for your health. But are they?

Guide Health: Fortified water – a good thing or not?

Many of these drinks may make sense for pro football players, but not the rest of us

Undoubtedly you will have seen the rows of fortified and flavoured water drinks in just about any store, as well as energy and sports water products too. According to the advertising, these beverages are just the thing you need for your health. But are they? Canada’s Food Guide has recently been updated, and it recommends […] Read more

“We’re not able to eliminate the stresses that farmers experience but we can help them build their resilience.” – Dr. Andria Jones-Bitton, University of Guelph.

Admitting you have a mental health problem

Learn to look in the mirror… really look. Dealing with stress and anxiety may never be easy, but it helps if you’re alert for these warning signs

For several years, Wayne Black couldn’t see what was happening. He drove himself to be better as a farmer and then, when he became a sales manager at a central Ontario farm input dealership, he was always striving for the highest results for his customers. But early in 2018, he began to notice that he […] Read more


You don’t have to accept hearing loss as simply part of aging. Therapies and devices such as hearing aids have come a long way.

Guide Health: Hearing loss – listen to this!

Too many of us mistakenly believe that hearing loss is an inescapable part of the aging process

Anywhere from 20 to 50 per cent of Canadians report some degree of hearing loss, with the higher numbers being among seniors. A great many of these people accept diminished hearing as part of aging, or alternatively do not realize that they do not hear as they once did. Often, it is actually a different […] Read more

Fibre is found mainly in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes.

Guide Health: Are you getting enough dietary fibre?

Start slowly — adding too much fibre too fast will result in adverse effects

You know that fibre is an important part of your diet, but do you get enough? Daily recommendations vary from 25 to 30 grams of fibre, with older people and women needing even more. A penny weighs about a gram, so that’s about 25 to 30 pennies in weight. (I suspect you can remember pennies!) […] Read more


This is the way farming should look, yet mental health challenges are changing this imagery.

Struggling on the farm

You’re already trained for first aid on the farm. But what about mental illness?

By now, most people involved in agriculture have heard something about depression and anxiety disorders. Whether it’s been through the survey of farmer mental health, started in 2015 and highlighted in 2018, or through the efforts of groups like Do More Ag, word has spread. Now, it’s important that this awareness gets translated into action, […] Read more

Bed bugs are most active at night, and are found in dark crevices and in fabric folds.

Guide Health: Bed bugs – yuck!

Bed bugs are very resilient and can go without feeding for up to 11 months

Bed bugs of the species Cimex lectularius are certainly unpleasant. However, they are not harmful. Bed bugs are parasites, and different types of bed bugs are specific to different species of animals. They feed on blood, and when they do, they inject some of their saliva into the bite. It is this saliva that causes […] Read more


While some mitts, toques, and boots may not be fashionable, wearing them keeps you warm.

Guide Health: The cold, hard truth

If you do experience a cold injury, warm the area gently – no rubbing!

In cold weather, you will obviously want to be dressed warmly to avoid frostbite, frost nip, or even more serious injury. But it may not be as simple as you think. Cold damage is caused by ice crystals forming in your skin and tissues. It is this direct damage that leads to tissue death. About […] Read more

Guide Health: The bother of warts

Most warts may be harmless, but it’s still important to know what to do and expect

Yes, warts are usually considered harmless, but they certainly can be a bother. Warts are caused by a group of viruses known as the human papillomaviruses. About 12 per cent of the population is affected at any one time, with children and young adults experiencing warts more often. The spread is via direct skin-to-skin contact, […] Read more


The black-legged, or deer tick, is known to carry Lyme disease.

Guide Health: Exposed to Lyme disease

The number of diagnosed cases in Canada is climbing, and so is the geographic area at risk

One of the hazards of outdoor activity is exposure to insects, and one of the insect-like species out there is the black-legged or deer tick (ixodid tick), which can carry Lyme disease. The name originates from Old Lyme, Connecticut, the place where the disease was first identified in the late 1980s. Recently, the incidence of […] Read more

If you measure your blood pressure at home, compare your readings with what your medical professional measures at the clinic to gauge the accuracy your home blood pressure monitor.

Guide Health: What you need to know about home testing

With any home test, check to make sure you know what it actually tests for, and that you are aware of its limitations

Home tests give you information about your health or medical condition while enabling you to maintain your privacy. Some home tests are commonly used. Think about the blood glucose or sugar tests you use if you have diabetes, or the pregnancy and fertility tests that help you with family planning. The idea is to help […] Read more