Tag Archives: healthy

Eat, Drink, & Be Merry Without the Guilt

 


Holiday Party Strategies

You drank too much eggnog at the office party.

Undo the damage. You can blame your wicked hangover and pounding headache on dehydration and the toxins your body had to release to metabolize all that booze. “Alcohol also increases the secretion of acid in the stomach and irritates the stomach lining,” says Robert Swift, MD, PhD, associate director of the Brown University Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies in Providence. Relieve your misery by eating a piece of toast with honey. Greasy foods, like fried eggs and sausages, will only overtax your irritated digestive system and make it pump out more acid, Dr. Swift says. Honey is an excellent source of fructose, a sugar that research shows may help your body get rid of alcohol’s toxins more quickly. Rehydrate with plenty of water and pop an ibuprofen, which was found to relieve aches faster and better than acetaminophen in a study in the journal Headache.

Stay the course. To outsmart calories (eggnog packs more than 200 a cup) and hangovers at future fetes, order a mixed drink, such as vodka and club soda; it is low in calories (about 100), easy to dilute (just add soda), and less likely to cause a humongous hangover. “The darker the booze, the worse you’ll feel the next day,” Dr. Swift says. That’s because dark liquor contains more congeners, chemicals produced during the fermentation process that are to blame for many hangover symptoms. Also avoid screwdrivers, vodka and cranberry juice, and other drinks made with fruit, says Heather Bauer, RD, coauthor of The Wall Street Diet. The sugar in these cocktails will leave you craving more of the sweet stuff, making pecan pie, peppermint bark, Christmas cookies, you name it, irresistible.

You went overboard at last night’s holiday dinner.

Undo the damage. Even if you ate enough to feed Santa, Mrs. Claus, and all the reindeer, don’t starve yourself to make up for it. “Deprivation will set you up to overeat again,” says Patricia Bannan, RD, a nutritionist in Los Angeles and author of Eat Right When Time Is Tight. Eat a high-fiber breakfast (try a bowl of bran cereal with a handful of raisins), drink plenty of water, and work out to get things, um, moving. Munch on foods that are high in H2O (cucumbers, celery, and melon) and potassium (bananas, apricots, and pumpkin) to flush excess water out of your cells and reduce bloating, Bannan suggests. Steer clear of supersalty foods, such as pickles, olives, cured meats, and most frozen meals, as well as carbonated drinks.

Stay the course. When you’re dining at a friend’s or a relative’s, bring a healthy dish that you can dig into guilt-free. Then choose sweet potatoes over mashed with gravy, and broccoli over green bean casserole. Skip the rolls even if they’re whole wheat; chances are you already have plenty of carbs. Help yourself to a double serving of salad to fill up without filling out, and just say no when Aunt Edna insists that you have another spoonful of her stuffing (’tis the season for food pushers!). A little humor will take the edge off, so say, “Your stuffing is so good, but if I eat another bite I’ll be more stuffed than that bird!” When you play hostess, fix lighter fare (make your green bean casserole with fresh beans and sauteed onions rather than cream of mushroom soup and fried onions). And since Turkey Day leftovers are even more delectable and easier to overindulge in, send guests home with doggie bags.

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Stay Fit During Stressful Times

You haven’t been to the gym in more than two weeks.

Undo the damage. You only think your hiatus has turned you into the sugar-plump fairy. “It takes at least three weeks to lose aerobic condition and muscle strength,” says exercise physiologist and personal trainer Alice Burron, a spokesperson for the American Council on Exercise. Once you start working out, you’ll be up to speed again in no time. The real challenge is getting your head back in the game, so try these tricks from FITNESS readers: “Think ahead to how energized and accomplished you’ll feel after you exercise,” says Lani Muelrath, a fitness trainer in Magalia, California. Or register for a Zumba session or a running club, suggests Pearl McGregor, a respiratory therapist in McKinney, Texas. “If you sign up for a class and pay for it, you have to go!” she says. Still not feeling it? “A cute new workout outfit is an instant motivator,” says Brandi White, a ballet instructor in Phoenix.

Stay the course. Take baby steps, every day. “Even a 20-minute walk will keep you in the exercise habit,” says clinical psychologist Judith Beck, PhD, author of The Beck Diet Solution, and chances are you’ll be inspired to keep going. No time to hit the gym? Shape up in your living room with an exercise ball, 5-pound weights, and a resistance band. Burron recommends moves that target several muscle groups. Or sneak fitness into your holiday to-dos, suggests Heather Chambliss, PhD, professor of exercise behavior at the University of Memphis. Combing the mall for two hours blasts about 350 calories; boost the burn by doing biceps curls with shopping bags while waiting to pay for gift number 207. If you’re really moving, an hour spent climbing up and down a ladder hoisting lights is comparable to an easy workout.

You’ve been working long hours to prep for holiday vacation, so dinner is always delivery.

Undo the damage. Today is the day you start working smarter so you can get home in time to cook a healthy meal. Go to the office early (extra hours in the morning, when you’re fresh, are more productive) and outline your to-dos. If possible, delegate time-sucking projects that can easily be done by others, and avoid multitasking. When subjects in a study from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor tried to switch between two tasks, their productivity dropped by 50 percent or more. Tell associates to call with urgent concerns so you can turn off e-mail alerts, and check your in-box just three times a day. “That seemingly harmless ding or pop-up instant message actually creates a huge disruption,” Beck notes.

Stay the course. If you’re logging overtime despite your new and improved habits, spend some time in the kitchen on the weekend. On Sunday, whip up a vegetarian chili or stir-fry and refrigerate it. Or stock up on ingredients for quick-as-a-wink after-work dinners: low-sodium soups, microwavable brown rice, frozen veggies, rotisserie chicken, and peeled shrimp. If you must do delivery, cheesy and creamy aren’t the only adjectives on the menu to avoid. Also watch out for crunchy (translation: fried), says Bannan, and order sauce on the side so you can use it sparingly. Instead of ordering in, stop on your way home to pick up a burger from a restaurant (topped with onions and mushrooms and without the bun, it weighs in at about 300 calories) or a ready-made salad from the supermarket (just use your own low-calorie dressing).

 You’ve been staying up till the wee hours. Your little helper? A colossal mocha with whipped cream.

Undo the damage. “Holiday activities lead to significant sleep loss, driving people to caffeine and sugar,” says Cornell University sleep researcher James Maas, PhD, coauthor of Sleep for Success! Lack of zzz’s also triggers a drop in leptin (the hormone that tells your brain, “I’m full”) and a rise in ghrelin (the one that screams, “I’m starving!”). Stay alert without wrecking your diet by ordering a 12-ounce skim latte (100 calories compared with 450 in a massive mocha), but hit the coffee shop before midafternoon or your sleep could suffer. Eat for all-day energy by combining protein and complex carbs at every meal: a veggie omelet and a small bran muffin for breakfast, grilled chicken on whole wheat bread for lunch, whole-grain pasta with baked fish for dinner, and lots of produce all day. “Healthy carbs give you longer-lasting energy than simple sugars from cake and candy,” Bannan says.

Stay the course. Getting more sleep is easier said than done; luckily, quality, not just quantity, affects how rested you feel. A small carb-based snack, like a banana, an hour before bed will speed your body’s release of tryptophan, which steps up production of snooze-inducing serotonin, Maas says. Turn off your TV and computer 30 minutes before you turn in. Light, even that from a flickering screen, can disrupt your body clock, as can a warm room. The magic number? Sixty-seven degrees. If you’re still tired during the day, try these calorie-free pick-me-ups: Go for a quick run or pop a piece of sugar-free gum. Chewing works the facial muscles, which increases the flow of blood to your head and keeps you alert. You’ll feel refreshed — and revved to hit more holiday parties with the energy and willpower to stick to your diet.

 

Source: https://www.fitnessmagazine.com/weight-loss/tips/party-proof-your-diet/

Diabetes: The Scary Truth

It is scary that more than 100 million U.S. adults are now living with diabetes or pre-diabetes, according to a new report recently released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The report finds that as of 2015, 30.3 million Americans – 9.4% of the U.S. population – have diabetes. Another 84.1 million have pre-diabetes, a condition that if not treated often leads to type 2 diabetes within five years.

Source: www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2017/p0718-diabetes-report.html


Starting in January Sikorsky Chiropractic will be hosting a monthly health meeting.  Dr. Sikorsky will be your coach and guide you in becoming healthier.  This class will be a safe space where various topics will be covered to improve your overall health.  Each month we will discuss something different at our meeting.  We will include conversation on exercise, diet, sleep, etc. in our meetings.  As January comes near we will provide more information!

Too Much Sedentary Behavior Will Negatively Affect Our Children

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Do you have kids?  Are you thinking of having kids? If you answer yes then this is a great article to read!

It’s so important that we make sure we are taking the right steps to instill good habits in our children’s lives to help them lead a healthy lifestyle into adulthood. On top of a high amount of sedentary behavior among children, 1/3 of children are not getting enough physical activity.  It can change!  Our children will follow the example we set so let’s make it a good one!

 


 

Children who spend more than three-quarters of their time engaging in sedentary behaviour, such as watching TV and sitting at computers, have up to nine times poorer motor coordination than their more active peers, reveals a study published in the American Journal of Human Biology.

The study, involving Portuguese children, found that physical activity alone was not enough to overcome the negative effect of sedentary behavior on basic motor coordination skills such as walking, throwing or catching, which are considered the building blocks of more complex movements.

“Childhood is a critical time for the development of motor coordination skills which are essential for health and well-being,” said lead author Dr. Luis Lopes, from the University of Minho. “We know that sedentary lifestyles have a negative effect on these skills and are associated with decreased fitness, lower self-esteem, decreased academic achievement and increased obesity.”

Dr. Lopes’ team studied 110 girls and 103 boys aged nine to ten from 13 urban elementary schools. The children’s sedentary behavior and physical activity were objectively measured with accelerometers (a small device that children attach to their waist that quantifies movement counts and intensities) over five consecutive days. Motor coordination was evaluated with the KTK test (Körperkoordination Test für Kinder), which includes balance, jumping laterally, hopping on one leg over an obstacle and shifting platforms.

The tests were supplemented with a questionnaire for parents to assess health variables, before the authors compiled the results into three models to calculate odd ratios for predicting motor coordination. These were adjusted for physical activity, accelerometer wear time, waist to height ratio and home variables.

On average the children spent 75.6% of their time being sedentary, but the impact on motor coordination was found to be greater on boys than girls.

Girls who spent 77.3% or more of their time being sedentary were 4 to 5 times less likely to have normal motor coordination than more active girls. However, boys who were sedentary for more than 76% of their time were between 5 to 9 times less likely to have good or normal motor coordination than their active peers.

“It is very clear from our study that a high level of sedentary behavior is an independent predictor of low motor coordination, regardless of physical activity levels and other key factors” said Lopes. “High sedentary behavior had a significant impact on the children’s motor coordination, with boys being more adversely affected than girls.”

Until now there has been little research into the links between sedentary behavior and motor coordination, but these findings reveal that physical activity did not counteract the negative effects that high levels of sedentary behavior had on motor coordination.

“The results demonstrate the importance of setting a maximum time for sedentary behavior, while encouraging children to increase their amount of physical activity,” concluded Lopes. “We hope that our findings will make a valuable contribution to the debate on child health and encourage future investigations on this subject.”

 

Source:
Wiley. “Children who spend three-quarters of their time in sedentary behavior have up to nine times poorer motor coordination than active peers.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 August 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120815082723.htm>.
Wiley. (2012, August 15). Children who spend three-quarters of their time in sedentary behavior have up to nine times poorer motor coordination than active peers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 4, 2017 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120815082723.htm
Wiley. “Children who spend three-quarters of their time in sedentary behavior have up to nine times poorer motor coordination than active peers.” ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120815082723.htm (accessed November 4, 2017).

Get More Sleep, Get Rid of Chronic Pain

Not getting enough sleep – or not enough quality sleep that leaves you refreshed and ready to take on the day? Instead are you fatigued, irritable and ready to crawl right back into bed? A major health issue could be in your future: chronic pain. In fact, your odds of suffering chronic pain due to poor quality and/or quantity of sleep may increase by a factor of two or three compared to people who experience better sleep.

I have some tips for great sleep hygiene!

  1. Get regular. Go to bed and get up at more or less the same time every day, even on weekends and days off!
  2. Sleep when sleepy. Try to only sleep when you actually feel tired, rather than spending too much time awake in bed.
  3. Get up & try again. If 20 minutes pass and you’re still wide awake, get up and do something calming or boring until you feel sleepy.  Sit quietly somewhere with the lights off to tell your brain it’s time to shut down.
  4. Avoid caffeine & nicotine. Avoid consuming caffeine or nicotine for at least 4-6 hours before going to bed.  These act as stimulants and interfere with the ability to fall asleep.
  5. Avoid alcohol. It’s also best to avoid alcohol 4-6 hour before bed.  It may seem relaxing and helpful but actually interrupts the quality of sleep.
  6. Bed is for sleeping. If you use your bed as a place to watch TV, eat, read, work on your laptop, pay bills, and other things, your body will not learn this connection.
  7. No naps. Avoid taking naps during the day to make sure that you are tired at bedtime.  If you absolutely have to nap make sure it’s before 3pm and less than an hour.
  8. Sleep rituals. It can be helpful to do relaxing stretches or breathing exercises for 15 minutes before bed. Even sitting calmly with a cup of caffeine-free tea can be helpful!
  9. Bathtime. A hot bath 1-2 hours before bed will raise your body temperature causing you to feel sleepy as your body temperature drops again.
  10. No clock-watching. Frequently checking the clock during the night can wake you up and reinforce negative thoughts about sleep time.
  11. Exercise. Regular exercise is a good idea to help with good sleep, but try not to do too much within 4 hours before bedtime.
  12. Eat right. A balance diet will help you sleep well but timing is important.  It’s difficult to go to sleep on an empty stomach so having a light snack may be helpful.
  13. The right space. A cooler room with enough blankets to stay warm is best.  Curtains or an eyemask are great to block out the light as well as earplugs to have complete quiet.
  14. Keep daytime routine the same. Don’t avoid activities because you feel tired.  Try to keep them the same as you had planned making sure to not reinforce insomnia.

Developing these good habits can provide long-term solutions to sleep difficulties.  Of course there are many medications used to treat insomnia, but these tend to only be effective in the short-term.  Ongoing use of these medications may lead to dependence and interfere with developing good sleep habits independent of medications.

Chronic pain isn’t something to mess with, but you don’t have to. Let’s discuss any pain you’re experiencing and don’t forget to mention any sleep issues. Whether poor sleep is causing your pain, or pain is causing poor sleep, I can help determine the cause and correct it. Now that’s called a win-win.

 

 

  • Sources: www.toyourhealth.com/mpacms/tyh/article.php?id=2431

www.cci.health.wa.gov.au

 

 

Bursting the Diet Soda Bubble

Bursting the Diet Soda Bubble

Regular soda is bad for you – it’s full of sugar and is packed with empty calories. What’s more, consumption of soda has been linked to heart disease, among other conditions. Think the answer is switching to diet cola? Think again.

Results from the Framingham Heart Study, reported in the research journal Circulation, indicate that even diet sodas increase the risk of heart disease and diabetes. Of the 6,000 healthy, middle-aged men and women who participated in the study, those who drank at least one soda (diet or regular) per day had about a 50 percent higher risk of metabolic syndrome (a cluster of cardiovascular and diabetes risk factors).

Compared to participants who drank less than one soda per day, those who drank at least one soda also had a 31 percent greater risk of becoming obese, a 30 percent higher risk of developing increased waist circumference, a 25 percent higher risk of developing high blood triglycerides and high blood sugar, and a 32 percent greater risk of low “good” cholesterol levels.

Researchers adjusted for the fact that people who drink soda tend to have similar dietary patterns – they consume more calories and unhealthy fats, eat less fiber, and exercise less – and still observed a statistically significant association between soft drink consumption and the risk of developing metabolic syndrome. While poor overall health habits could be to blame, other theories focus on the caramel coloring and fructose corn syrup in sodas, or the tendency to crave sweets when you consume a diet high in sweets.

Although more research on the topic is in order, for now, experts advise that you limit your intake of all soft drinks – including diet sodas. That’s a recommendation to take to heart.

The Agony of Feet

Have you taken a good look at your feet lately? What do you notice? Are there any calluses, corns or bunions? Do your feet look red or do your toes look cramped and pushed together? Sore, aching feet can be more than inconvenient – they can put you out of commission.

Conditions ranging from calluses and heel spurs to plantar fascitis and Achilles tendon injuries can severely impact your quality of life. Long-term problems will result from these conditions if the proper treatment is not sought.

Here are possible treatment options to give you an idea of how to help yourself and when to seek help from a professional.

 

Have Dr. Steve adjust your feet! If you have never had your feet adjusted by Dr Steve, you don’t know what you are missing. Aside from helping to support your three arches by getting the bones to move back to where they should be, it feels great.

 

Talk to Dr. Steve about flexible, custom-made, three-arch foot inserts (Orthotics)! Since the connective tissue under your feet is now permanently stretched out to some degree, you need the support from now on. Once you get the inserts, wear them appropriately. You want to keep your feet stabilized so they don’t get any worse.

 

Do exercises! Keep the underside of your feet loose by rolling a tennis ball or golf ball under them. Thirty seconds, twice a day will help keep your feet more relaxed and stretched.

 

Get supportive shoes! Wearing a shoe that fits properly and offers the best support will help keep your feet from over pronating.

 

Changes

 

Back in 2015 I did Ironman Lake Placid.  The race did not turn out quite like I wanted it to.  I did not reach my goals and in fact, the race was quite miserable. I had some choices to make.  I could continue to do the same type of training I did before, quit triathlon, or hire a coach. I decided to choose the last option.

I hired a coach and followed his training plan program for a full year. Then I raced Ironman 70.3 Steelhead (my A race). That race went much better, however I still missed my time goal.  I was faster and stronger than 2015, but I still missed my goal.  Fast forward to 2017 – I continued to follow my coach’s training plan, which went really well. I was much faster in all my races.  The last race of the season went well and I almost placed in the top ten of my age group.

Now how does this story apply to a patient’s health? If you have, for example, lower back pain and it’s ongoing you have some choices to make. You can either do nothing about it and let it get progressively worse or you could see someone (hopefully me) and begin to work hard and make changes to improve and make your body better.  There will be some ups and downs and maybe a big setback in your journey. Stick to the plan, have faith, make any necessary changes, and you will improve slowly and surely.

The correct choices in one’s life are usually the difficult ones.  So choose a good chiropractic doctor (that would be me) eat your vegetables, drinks lots of water, and exercise.  You will be on your way to a better body in no time.

Welcome to My Blog!

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Hello! Welcome to my blog!

My name is Stephen Sikorsky and I am a chiropractor.  A chiropractor is a doctor who treats the human frame without drugs or surgery.  We use chiropractic adjustments, exercise, and nutrition to treat and prevent disease.

I’m very excited to have my little piece of the internet!  The mission of this blog is to help educate my patients and the general public about health topics.  These topics will include chiropractic, exercise, nutrition, and overall health.

The amount of information available on health can be overwhelming at times.  The information that will be found on this blog will be simple, effective, and easy to implement into our daily lives, and most importantly, will be what my family and I use to stay healthy.

Overall health and keeping a healthy lifestyle doesn’t necessarily have to be complicated or difficult.  Being as healthy as you can be will take discipline, repetition, dedication and the willingness to change, and a master’s mindset.  A master’s mindset-for the ones who do no know-is the ability to make the correct choices in your life.  The correct choices in one’s life are usually the difficult ones.  For example, do your exercises when you’re tired or eat a salad instead of French fries.

To improve one’s health you cannot just do something once and expect change or keep doing what you’re presently doing and expect a different outcome.