Though we’re now 25 years into the AIDS epidemic, many of our leaders are only now starting to get that HIV/AIDS is hammering black families—and that they can play a role in stopping it. In “Race Against Time”, Linda Villarosa explains that some of our greatest thinkers have stopped allowing fear, ignorance, misinformation, denial and/or homophobia to keep them from educating our community about how to prevent, detect and fight this devastating disease. In celebration of World AIDS Day on December 1 and in the spirit of the Kwanzaa principle kujichagulia (self-determination), we acknowledge the progress of organizations—from the NAACP and National Urban League to black Greeks to the National Coalition of 100 Black Women and 100 Black Men of America—and invite their members to become active in helping our community respond to this crisis.

For many people who are very heavy, weight loss surgery can stave off health calamities and help them regain their lives. But an expanding body of research is uncovering new and serious risks. We examine the pros and cons in time for the New Year.

The better option for most folks is to eat more healthfully. This holiday season, we explore “superfoods”, which scientists have discovered have incredible healing properties. If you think healthy eating has to be bland or is culturally irrelevant, you haven’t tried trimming your bird with barbecue sauce, ginger and garlic; prepared yams dripping with pineapple, orange and turmeric; or sautéed your collards with garlic and lime juice. Enjoy this meal with your loved ones—what better way to nourish your body and soul.

With seasonal blessings,

Hilary Beard, Executive Editor