Good Day Alabama: Nov. 17, 2015

Good Day Alabama: Nov. 17, 2015

Here's what you saw on Good Day Alabama:

JEH JEH LIVE - This is the March of Dimes' World Prematurity Day. The 8th annual March of Dimes Premature Birth Report Cards were issued for all states and the nation. This year the report cards highlight populations within a state with a high volume or high burden of prematurity. Alabama again received an "F." Today is also Blue Jeans for Babies Up Day at 2nd& Charles on Hwy. 31 in Hoover. You can also pick them up tomorrow at Books-a-Million and Brookwood Mall. The March of Dimes Alabama Chapter encourages everyone to wear jeans in support of a good cause on Friday, Nov. 20 for the statewide Blue Jeans for Babies Day. Participants can purchase one of five Comfort Colors t-shirts to wear with jeans, khaki pants, etc. Businesses, organizations and individuals who participate are supporting the March of Dimes in the fight against premature birth, birth defects and infant loss.
America's babies are in crisis today. Nearly half a million are born prematurely every year, and the number is rising. One in seven babies is born prematurely here in Alabama, equaling 164 babies each week. Premature birth is the number one killer of newborns and the leading cause of death in children under the age of 5. It costs society billions of dollars every year, and more than half of preterm births occur from unknown reasons. No one is working harder than the March of Dimes to find the answers so that one day every parent can know they joy of a healthy baby. Funds raised through Blue Jeans for Babies support research, community programs, advocacy, education and support for babies and families. The March of Dimes Alabama Chapter has hosted Blue Jeans for Babies Day since 1997 raising nearly $2.4 million to give every baby a fighting chance at life. For more information on how to participate in Blue Jeans for Babies, contact the March of Dimes Alabama Chapter at 205-588-0511 or

BETH K - Are junk food and sodas off the hook? UAB Nutritionist Dr. Beth Kitchin joined us to explain a new study. Last week, health headlines declared that candy, sodas and fast foods are not to blame for the rise in obesity over the last 40 or so years. The headlines came in the wake of a new analysis of food consumption data by researchers at Cornell University. Now, let's point out that plenty of studies show that if you eat too much junk food, candy, and sugar, then yes, you will gain weight. But that's not the question that these researchers asked. They wanted to know if these foods were the major drivers of obesity in the U.S. In other words, are these the foods that most Americans are overeating and are they the main causes of our "obesity epidemic?" To answer this question, the researchers looked at a massive survey study of Americans. And what they found was that for 95 percent of Americans, there was no difference between those who were overweight and obese and those who were at a healthy weight and their consumption of junk food. Interestingly, the people who were eating the most junk food were those who were at the extremes:  lowest body weight - below 125 pounds - or at the very highest body weight - above 310 pounds. Again, if you eat too much junk food, it will likely add on the pounds. But this research seems to suggest is that for most people, this is not where their extra calories are coming from. Demonizing these specific foods and targeting them in public policy may not have much impact on lower obesity.
MONEY TUESDAY- Christmas music is playing in all the stores now. The holiday season seems to begin just a bit earlier each year but it is a good reminder of how important it is to have a holiday spending plan in place so that you don't start the new year in a financial hole.  Coming up with holiday gifts for the people you care about doesn't have to cost you a fortune. You just need to be creative.  Michael Wagner with the Welch Group joined us with a look at a strategy everyone can use:
1. Set a goal.  Let's start with your number one overarching goal: Create no new debt!  The last thing you want to do is to start 2016 with credit card charges you can't pay off in full.  Take a moment to review your current financial situation and set a 'dollar amount' goal.  How much can you afford to spend -paying cash- this holiday season?  It's ok to use credit cards as long as you have the cash to pay off the new purchases in full once the bill arrives.
2. Start saving now.  Hopefully, you've already saved up some money for gift-giving this holiday season but you still have a few paychecks before the deadline.  Think of other ways to raise cash such as holding a garage sale, selling that boat that's been sitting in the back yard, or selling unwanted items on eBay.  It's a great time to clean house because what you no longer want may be on someone else's Christmas list!
3. Make a list.  Make a list of the people you plan to give a gift and keep the list with you.  This will give you a head start on your shopping as you never know when you'll run into a great deal!  Having the list readily available will allow you to 'match' a great bargain to someone on your list right there on the spot.
4. Shop with purpose! Whether you go 'brick and mortar' or on-line, you now know how much you're going to spend and who you're going to spend it on.  As with year's past, I expect to see lots of bargains.
5. Give something back. The economic turmoil of the past few years has spawned financial hardship on many families. Use this holiday season to teach your children the importance of giving to others who are in need. There are many ways to accomplish this:  donate clothing, food, money or you can spend some time working in one of the many shelters located in your hometown.
For more pointers, visit

WINSTON GROOM ON GENERALS - Winston Groom, best-selling author of Forrest Gump, joins us with his new military history that tells the story of the greatest generals of their time. They had been born into the age of horses and buggies and lived to the age of nuclear weapons and—in MacArthur's case—the spectacle of men in outer space. At times they were revered by their peers and by the multitudes as gods, but they weren't, of course.They were exceptionally good soldiers, and great captains, brave as lions, bold as bulls, audacious, and inventive, marshaling huge victorious armies. With all their quirks and foibles and mistakes they were still fine men who served their country with distinction, and when they died their memory-enriched the national trust.  Winston Groom returns with THE GENERALS: Patton, MacArthur, Marshall, and the Winning of World War II an exhilarating military history that tells the story of three remarkable soldiers who rose from the blood-soaked battlefields of World War I to become the finest generals of their time during World War II. In a uniquely American tale, George Marshall, George Patton and Douglas MacArthur collectively redefined America's notions of military leadership and gave rise to a new generation of American soldiers.

WILDLIFE EXPERT - Stuart R. Goldsby is the Regional Hunter Education Coordinator for Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. Today he discusses calls and decoys for hunting. For more information call Outdoor Alabama's Wildlife section 334-242-3469, Enforcement section 334-242-3467, Fisheries section 334-242-3471, or visit Stuart shows us different calls and demonstrates a few. He also showed us examples of decoys and blinds that can be used in conjunction with calling. The use of Blinds is about concealment of the hunter/hunters from wildlife's keen eyes and nose. Calling is about reaching out to wildlife. The object is to draw attention to the hunter's position. Decoying is about bringing wildlife in close, within ethical shot range for a clean humane shot.

Tomorrow on Good Day Alabama, the doctor joins us to take your questions about your children's health! Mickey takes us on another adventure at the Birmingham Zoo! We talk college football and the latest rankings! And Jeh Jeh takes us to a special performance of the Messiah! Find out how you can enjoy it in person this weekend! Join us for this and much more tomorrow on Good Day!