Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Triple Axel

Mao Asada, Silver Medalist in Ladies Figure Skating at the 2010 Winter Olympics, landed three triple axels in the competition, a feat no competitor had done before. How does a person put together all the various pieces of this beautiful and daring feat? Certainly not by thinking about them. Thinking gets in the way because we cannot think at skating speed.

How can we bring a skater's level of excellence to our own training?
Push-ups Can Be Beautiful, Too!
Like the triple axel, a push-up has many moving parts. You're not spinning in the air and landing on a slick, friction-less surface, but doing a push-up correctly and effectively still requires a great deal of coordination. And, a well-executed push-up can be a thing of beauty.
Your hands are placed on the floor, separated by a distance only slightly greater than your shoulder width. Your feet are straight behind you, close together and flexed, with your toes on the floor. You support your weight on your hands and your toes. Your body is elevated, and you maintain a straight line from your head and neck, down through your back and legs, and to your ankles.
Importantly, you're helping to support your weight by activating your abdominal muscles. Your stomach should be firm, not loose and hanging down.
Using your abdominal muscles for support, lower yourself to the ground by bending your elbows and push-up back to the starting straight-line position. Do a few push-ups in good form to begin, and sequentially add push-ups every few days as you become more coordinated and stronger in this activity.
A push-up is a compound exercise and strengthens many major muscle groups.
Mao Asada, Silver Medalist in Ladies Figure Skating at the 2010 Winter Olympics, landed three triple axels in the competition, a feat no competitor had done before. There are no easy figure skating jumps, spins, or technical elements, but the triple axel is particularly difficult. This jump has many moving parts, all of which must be exquisitely coordinated in order to land safely on the ice with the specified number of turns in the air.
How does a person put together all the various pieces of this beautiful and daring feat? Certainly not by thinking about them. The timing of the triple axel, as with all figure skating "tricks", happen in a matter of seconds. The individual moving parts happen in split seconds. So thinking about what's coming next will cause the skater to fall and ignominiously sprawl on the ice.
Well-executed triple axels, triple flips, and triple salchows are things of beauty, grace, and athleticism. Double and single jumps are wondrous too, and require very high levels of skill and coordination.1,2 A skater learns how to do these things well by practicing, training, and developing a keen ability to focus. The hours, days, months, and years of training teach a skater's body how to do these jobs well. For the most part, thinking is not part of the process. Thinking gets in the way because we cannot think at skating speed.
How can we bring a skater's level of excellence to our own training? Whether we're lifting weights, doing yoga, riding a bike, walking, running, or swimming, a high level of commitment is needed in order to get the results we want.3 A half-hearted effort won't get the job done. If we truly want to be healthy and well, regular exercise is required. Our commitment involves planning our time efficiently so we can exercise at least 30 minutes each day.
Also, we need to be sure we're getting as much as we can out of our exercise time. We're exercising to train our heart, lungs, muscles, bones, and joints. If these various body parts and systems aren't communicating well, some or much of time spent exercising will be wasted. The best way to ensure optimal functioning of all our physiologic systems is to make sure our nerve system is operating at full capacity. Chiropractic health care is directed at fulfilling this need.
Regular chiropractic care restores and maintains full functioning of the nerve system. All body systems then function effectively and you're able to derive maximal benefit from your exercise. Your body becomes smarter and able to perform at high levels. You develop new physical skills and abilities. You may become more creative, you may sleep better, and you may have more fun in life.
1Tanguy SG, et al: Are otolithic inputs interpreted better in figure skaters? Neuroreport 19(5):565-568, 2008
2Lockwood KL, et al: Landing for success: a biomechanical and perceptual analysis of on-ice jumps in figure skating. Sports Biomech 5(2)231-241, 2006
3Rinne M, et al: Is Generic Physical Activity Or Specific Exercise Associated With Motor Abilities? Med Sci Sports Exerc February 13, 2010 (Epub ahead of print)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Seminar on Building Strong Immunity

As we move into Fall, which begins in the Month of September, I wanted to offer anyone interested the opportunity to learn "How to Build and Improve Your Immunity" so that you and perhaps your children could begin to have a healthy Fall and Winter.
On Tuesday, September 27th at 6:30 pm, I will be offering a seminar on Building Immunity in a Natural and Holistic Way, designed to teach you what you can do to help you and your family develop a healthy and strong Immune System.
What the one class will offer is an opportunity for you to understand What causes your Immune System to be strong or weak; What you are currently doing to sabotage your own Immune System, and those of your family; What can be done to help shift your life-style from the Immune System Suppression one you currently have, over to one that will serve as a foundation for getting and staying healthy.  I will offer simple techniques that you or anyone can do to stimulate your Immune System in a natural way, and what it means if, when practicing these techniques, your body is sore.
The class will offer the opportunity for you to ask all your health and Immune related questions, and give you the chance to have your Immune System evaluated. 

The cost of the class is FREE, but limited to the first 15 people who call and reserve their spot.  So please call the office at (845) 561-2225 and me which Tuesday evening will fit your schedule.  With everyone getting back into their Back To School routine, developing these Immune Building habits is important.  Please take advantage of this opportunity, and have a healthy Fall and Winter.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Advice for Mothers-To-Be

The weight gain, the bloating, the nausea... Most new mothers will tell you that the aches and pains of pregnancy are a small price to pay for the beautiful bundle of joy they're rewarded with nine months later.
But as many new mothers can attest, the muscle strains of pregnancy are very real and can be more than just a nuisance. The average weight gain of 25 to 35 pounds, combined with the increased stress placed on the body by the baby, can sometimes result in severe discomfort. In fact, studies have found that about half of all expectant mothers will develop low back pain at some point during their pregnancy. This is especially true during late pregnancy, when the baby's head presses down on a woman's back, legs and buttocks, putting pressure on her sciatic nerve. And for those who already suffer from low back pain, the problem can become even worse.
During pregnancy, a woman's center of gravity almost immediately begins to shift forward to the front of her pelvis, according to Dr. Jerome McAndrews, spokesperson for the American Chiropractic Association (ACA). Although a woman's sacrum— or posterior section of her pelvis— has more depth than a man's to enable her to carry a baby, the displaced weight still increases the stress on her joints. "As the baby grows in size," Dr. McAndrews explains, "the woman's weight is projected even farther forward, and the curvature of her lower back is increased, placing extra stress on her spinal disks in that area. As a result, the spine in the upper back area must compensate— and the normal curvature of her upper spine increases as well."
While these changes sound dramatic, Mother Nature does step in to help accommodate them. During pregnancy, hormones are released that help loosen the ligaments attached to the pelvic bones. But even these natural changes designed to accommodate the growing baby can result in postural imbalances, causing pregnant women to be more prone to awkward trips and falls.
What Can You Do?
The following tips are recommend for pregnant women looking for relief from the discomforts of pregnancy:
  • Safe exercise during pregnancy can help strengthen your muscles and prevent discomfort. Try exercising at least three times a week— preceded and followed up by a gentle stretching routine. If you weren't active before your pregnancy, however, now is not the time to start a new fitness routine. Check with your doctor before starting or continuing any exercise regimen during pregnancy.
    Walking, swimming and stationary cycling are relatively safe cardiovascular exercises for pregnant women, because they do not require jerking or bouncing movements. Even jogging, however, can be safe for women who were avid runners before becoming pregnant— if done carefully and under the supervision of a doctor.
    Whatever exercise routine you choose, be sure to do it in an area with secure footing to minimize the likelihood of falls. Also, be certain that your heart rate does not exceed 140 beats per minute during exercise, and that strenuous activity lasts no more than 15 minutes at a time.
    Stop your exercise routine immediately if you notice any unusual symptoms, such as vaginal bleeding, dizziness, nausea, weakness, blurred vision, increased swelling or heart palpitations.
  • Wear flat, sensible shoes. Not only can high or chunky heels be uncomfortable, they can also exacerbate postural imbalances and cause you to be less steady on your feet than you already are. This is especially true as you get farther along in your pregnancy.
  • When picking up older children— or any other object for that matter— bend from the knees, not the waist. And never turn your head when you lift. Just to be on the safe side, avoid picking up heavy objects altogether, if possible.
  • When sleeping, lie on your side with a pillow between your knees to take pressure off your lower back. Many women find that full-length "body pillows" or "pregnancy wedges" are especially helpful during pregnancy. Lying on your left side is ideal. This position allows unobstructed blood flow, and helps your kidneys flush waste from your body.
  • If you have a job that requires you to sit at a computer for long hours, be sure your workstation is ergonomically correct. Position the computer monitor so the top of the screen is at or below your eye level, and place your feet on a small footrest to take pressure off your legs and feet. Also, take periodic breaks every 30 minutes by taking a quick walk around the office.
  • Eat small meals or snacks every four to five hours— rather than the usual three large meals— to help keep nausea or extreme hunger at bay. Good snacks include crackers or yogurt— bland foods that are high in carbohydrates and protein. Keep saltines in your desk drawer or purse to help stave off waves of "morning sickness" that can, unfortunately, occur at any time throughout the day.
  • Folic acid supplements— at least 400 micrograms (mcg) a day— before and during pregnancy have been shown to decrease the risk of neural tube birth defects, such as spina bifida. Some doctors recommend even more for women who are already pregnant, or who previously gave birth to a child with a neural tube defect. However, check with your doctor before taking this or any other vitamin or herbal supplement. Some herbs and supplements that are considered perfectly safe for non-pregnant women can be dangerous or harmful to the baby or expectant mother.
  • Get plenty of rest. Don't let the demands of work and family life put you and your baby at risk. Pamper yourself, and ask for help if you need it. Take a nap if you're tired, or lie down and elevate your feet for a few moments when you need a break.
Visit the Chiropractor
Visit your doctor of chiropractic. Before you become pregnant, your doctor of chiropractic can detect any pre-existing imbalances in the pelvis or elsewhere in your body that could make pregnancy discomfort even worse— or leave you with additional neuromusculoskeletal problems after childbirth.
Many pregnant women have found that chiropractic adjustments provide relief from the increased low back pain brought on by pregnancy. Also, scientific studies have found that spinal manipulation carries no increased risk to the pregnant woman or her baby. Chiropractic's non-drug, non-surgical approach to back pain can be especially attractive to pregnant women who are trying to avoid over-the-counter and prescription drugs. Doctors of chiropractic can also offer nutrition, ergonomic and exercise advice that will help you avoid the discomforts of pregnancy.
Chiropractic care can also be helpful after childbirth. In the eight weeks following labor and delivery, the ligaments that loosened during pregnancy begin to tighten up again. Ideally, joint problems brought on during pregnancy from improper lifting or reaching should be treated before the ligaments return to their pre-pregnancy state. In addition, as the upper and lower spine return to normal, muscle tension, headaches, rib discomfort and shoulder problems can result. Your doctor of chiropractic can help.
Doc Rick has helped Mothers-To-Be for 20 years.  One of his first patients he ever treated was a woman during the last 2 trimesters of her first pregnancy.  She knew the importance of getting adjusted while adjusting to the changes in her body. 
Doc Rick still helps Mothers-To-Be currently in his practice.  And as a gift to the expectant parents and the new bundle of joy, Doc Rick offers to go to the house after the baby is born to adjust the new mom and her new baby.  And he does that as a courtesy for being a practice member.  It helps the new mom adjust to having given birth and now not having the stress of carrying the baby, and it helps the baby deal with the new found stress of gravity.  Everyone wins!
For information on how Doc Rick can help you through your pregnancy, simply call (845)561-BACK or 561-2225.  He's happy to work with you.

Sugar and Your Immune System

I want to begin by telling you that sugar is not a food.  Nor is it a nutrient that we, as humans, should be consuming in our diet.  Although sugar is available in many of our food preparations, understand that the body responds to sugar the same way it does to a drug.  It creates a chemical, non-natural response within the body.  It is because of this response that you should not consume sugar, most certainly not in the quantities that we do here in the United States.  Appreciate that sugar, as we buy it at the store, was never meant to be introduced into our bodies.  Originally consumed in very small quantities by the wealthy and privileged, it was only after the refining process became inexpensive and the manufacturing process of refined food became so convenient, that sugar became a staple in the American diet.
Only in America will you find the consumption of refined sugar as the driving force behind the sale of processed food.  Other countries consume less than half of what we do here in the United States.  The reason is because it is easy to understand what sugar does to the body.  It's simple physiology.  It affects the chemistry of the brain, similarly to drugs or alcohol.  All the countries of the world understand this, and they have decided to use it sparingly.  The United States, on the other hand, sees the opportunity for selling products, driving the economy and therefore uses it excessively.  And at what cost to you?
Since sugar is so addicting, and creates a withdrawal response similar to a drug, manufacturers have chosen to capitalize on that response and continue to manufacture foods high in sugar and other refined carbohydrates.  They've even gone as far as creating more highly addictive sugar substitutes that we continue to use, despite the reports that they are unhealthy for human consumption.  And since the positioning of these sugar substitutes claim to have no calories, we consume them with every meal.  As long as our advertisers continue to promote the use of these products, we will continue to consume them. 
The insanity that is pervasive within our society is amazing.  I can't tell you how many parents come to the office and tell me they can't get their children to eat anything unless it is sweet.  And the manufacturers understand this.  They are counting on it.  Because once the child has developed a sweet tooth, their health will never be the same unless some serious changes take place.  But as mentioned already, since sugar creates the addiction response, one must deal with the withdrawal symptoms if they are ever going to overcome it and become healthy.  This is quite difficult when your child is screaming and crying that they want only the sugar laden foods.  And since the American psyche conditions us to fear going without, we will resist the changes necessary in order to become healthy.  This pleases the manufacturers of foods, along with the pharmaceutical companies.  The solution?  Don't start feeding your children sugar, processed foods or refined, unnatural foods.  
In addition to sugar itself being addicting, sugar consumption sets one up for other unhealthy responses when combined with Antibiotic therapy.  This is because of the response an Antibiotic creates within the body.
Antibiotics are designed to suppress and destroy unwanted bacteria.  Unfortunately, antibiotics are non-discriminatory.  What this means is not only will they destroy the unwanted bacteria, but they will also eliminate the friendly symbiotic bacteria needed to digest our food.  Without these friendly bacteria, we can not break down our food fully and this impairs our ability to absorb the nutrients our bodies require.  With the loss of the friendly bacteria, this creates an imbalance within the Intestinal System between the major components of the digestive flora.  This is a condition known as Dysbiosis. 
Within a healthy Digestive System there exists a specific balance between friendly bacteria, Yeast and another fungus called Candidia.  All three of these live within the intestinal system and work together to break down and aid in the absorption and assimilation of our food.  The balance between the three components is vital for good health.  Any imbalance in the floral content will lead to maldigestion and create a litany of health problems.  Therefore, it is important to maintain homeostasis and work to correct any tendencies toward this imbalance.
What This Means To You
When one takes an Antibiotic for any bacterial infection, yes the infection can clear up.  But without proper instructions on how to restore normal balance to the digestive system, you will create a Systemic Yeast/Candida Imbalance.  How this happens is the Antibiotics destroy the friendly bacteria, creating a void within the intestines.  Unless a person fills the void by replacing the lost bacteria with a good high quality Probiotic Acidophilus supplement, both the Candidia and the Yeast will move in causing disruption of the needed balance.  Then when one adds sugar to the diet, it causes the Yeast and Candidia to grow, promoting more of an imbalance and setting the person up for countless other different health concerns. 
As the Yeast/Candidia grow, they begin to find themselves growing throughout the Digestive System and their effects begin to permeate other areas of the body.  This, over time, will create tiny holes in the digestive tract wall leading to the condition known as Leaky Gut Syndrome.  This is not a good thing for the person.  This syndrome allows for whole undigested proteins to enter into the bloodstream, rather then the properly digested amino acids.  When a foreign protein enters the blood, it prompts an Immune System response where the Immune Cells now attack the undigested proteins.  The Immune response is what we've come to know as food allergies.  The toxins produced from this Immune response then head to the Liver.  If the imbalance remains and the toxins continue to be produced, the accumulation eventually causes your Liver to over-toxify.  This creates the basis for conditions such as Arthritis, vision problems and other inflammatory diseases.  In our Spring newsletter, I will discuss the need for detoxifying your system as a result of this condition.  If this is a huge problem for you now, stop in to the office and I will tell you what your options are to restore balance now.
Since the Immune System is attacking the undigested proteins that have leaked into the blood stream, the Immune System is now on high alert.  Unfortunately, the Immune System, which is built from the essential amino acids that are obtained from the proteins we eat, begins to fatigue.  Over time, your natural Immune Response will begin to slow down or not respond at all.  This is something that can be determined by your basal body temperature.  If your temperature is below the 98.6 degrees, your Immune System is weak.  With a weakened Immune System, this sets the body up for further infection, since the Immune System is no longer strong enough to prevent other invaders from entering the body.
Some of the other health issues created by this intestinal imbalance can range from Sinus congestion and other Respiratory conditions like Asthma, Tonsillitis or ear infections, to skin disorders like Eczema, Psoriasis, Rosacea, and dandruff, along with other health imbalances such as Heart Disease, Diabetes, elevated cholesterol, High Blood Pressure or stroke, hormonal imbalances, viral infections, parasitic infections and Auto-Immune disorders like Systemic Lupus Erythematosis.  As mentioned earlier, the pharmaceutical companies rely on these imbalances to stay in business.  And it is through their advertisements that they have convinced us that the solution to all of these health concerns is "only a pill away."  Regardless of the side-effects, people would rather take toxic chemicals into their body designed to suppress the Nervous System and their awareness, rather then avoid sugar and get healthy.
My Offer To You
It's interesting to think that by consuming sugar on a regular basis it can create all of these health issues, but it is true.  If you are concerned about your sugar addiction, or are interested in avoiding the above mentioned health conditions created by digestive imbalances, and likewise are interested in avoiding the litany of medications that await you, contact the office and mention you read this article through our newsletter.  Ask us to schedule you for the Sugar Addict Evaluation.  Schedule an appointment to get checked for any of the above mentioned imbalances.  I will be happy to check you for these imbalances on your next regularly scheduled office appointment for FREE.  This is a $75.00 value and expires on September 30th.
If you are not currently a practice member, I will be happy to extend to you the same offer.  I will take the time to help you determine if you suffer from a Digestive Yeast/Candidia Imbalance.  So call The Office NOW at 561-2225 and mention this one time offer and ask us to put you in.  Tell us you want Sugar Addict EvaluationAfter September 30, the offer will be gone.  Take the time to determine if you have this imbalance and suffer from Immune weakness.  And if you need some digestive support to help replace the friendly bacteria you know you are lacking, we make available for purchase the most highly effective natural food supplements designed to replenish the lost, friendly bacteria, as well as removing the excess Yeast and Candidia.  Take action NOW, as your health depends on it.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

What's In Your Cereal?

I write this article with some trepidation because I know how important this may be to those of you who are on the go, and for moms who have limited budgets for food to feed their children.  With that in mind, I'd like to help you make better choices with your cereal by educating you on what goes into the manufacturing of your favorite morning food.

Are They Really Whole Grain?
Cereals are made from what started out as whole grains when they were originally harvested from the fields.  They are then milled into flour, or sometimes not, and made into the form you get when you buy a box of cereal.  What one needs to appreciate is that during the refining process, several things happen.  Obviously, the grain is processed from its original form into the form you see, but what also occurs during the refining process is it causes all of the vitamins to be destroyed.  During refining, the germ portion of the grain, where all the vital vitamins exist, is removed.  I'll help you to understand that in a minute.  But because all the vitamins have been removed, this is the reason they now have to "Enrich" the flour when making the cereal.  This is true for bread as well.  Otherwise, there would be no "nutrition" to the cereal.  Realistically, because the cereal has had all the synthetic vitamins added, there truly is no healthy nutrition within the cereal at all.  Instead, you get a small or large dose of processed sugar that gets stored as fat, while at the same time suppresses your Immune System. 

Getting back to the reason why the germ is removed, this is because of the essential oils that are found there.  For the grain to be healthy, these essential oils are needed and created by the plant during its normal growth.  They help to make the seeds necessary for the following years plant.  Once the plant is harvested, the grain, like a piece of fruit will start to decompose.  If the essential oils within the germ are left with the rest of the grain during the refining into flour, the oils, after about 5 or 7 days, begin to decompose and turn rancid.  This causes the taste of the grain to become sour or bitter.  Needless to say, if your cereal tasted bitter, you probably wouldn't eat it.  Another problem of rancid oils besides the taste, is the likelihood of the rancidity of the oils causing the formation of "free radicals."  These are potential cancer causing agents.  And why would a manufacturer want to do that?  This causes the manufacturers to make a decision.  They have to A) remove the essential oils that contain all the vitamins and nutrition, and replace them with synthetic, non-digestible and incomplete vitamins, -or- B) leave the essential oils in the cereal, and add a huge amount of sugar to disguise the rancid taste.  Neither seems a good choice if you are interested in being healthy.  So what should a person do?

My Recommendation To You
If you feel that cereal is the best choice for breakfast, due to its convenience or because of the cost issue, I suggest the following.  It will require you to become friendly with your local health food store owner.  Ask him to order you your whole grain cereal, and to call you the day it arrives.  Go and purchase it that very same day, and then return home with the cereal so you can transfer it from the box it came in to a Tupperware container.  Then keep the container in the refrigerator.  This will help to keep the oils from going rancid, and you won't have to eat all of that sugar.  Likewise, you won't be eating all of those empty calories.  This of course will help your body to respond with less weight, better energy and improved health because of it.  And you might be surprised to see you or your children having an easier time concentrating and learning.  Can you imagine what that will mean, if your kids could concentrate and listen better in school?  I realize it requires doing things differently, and that would be worth the trouble, don't you think?  After all, we are talking about your kids health and your sanity.
I hope this information has been helpful.  If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me at or you can call me directly at (845) 561-2225.