body

The ultimate guide to keeping your diet during the holidays.

We know what you’re all thinking, keeping your diet during the most wonderful time of the year is not as easy as eating pumpkin pie. But we’ve done our research! The CDC and American Heart Association have come out with two awesome guidelines to help you keep up your diet through the holidays– And they are more simple than you think.

Let us start with a few pointers from the CDC shall we…

1. Holiday-Proof Your Plan by Planning Ahead

  • If your meal is served later than normal, eat a small snack at your usual mealtime and eat a little less when dinner is served.
  • Invited to a party? Bring a healthy dish along. Plenty of people will bring the sweets. (Be the change).
  • Don’t skip meals to save up for a feast. You’ll be really hungry and more likely to overeat (we’ve all done it, but you’ll be sorry about it later).

2. Outsmart the Buffet

When you face a spread of delicious holiday food, make healthy choices easier:

  • Make a small plate of the foods you like best. Portion control is everything.
  • Start with vegetables to take the edge off your appetite.
  • Eat slowly. It takes at least 20 minutes for your brain to realize you’re full.
  • Avoid or limit alcohol. If you do have an alcoholic drink, have it with food.

3. Fit in Favorites

Choose the dishes you really love and can’t get any other time of year, like Aunt Edna’s pumpkin pie (which has a lot less calories than pecan pie). Slow down and savor a small serving, and make sure to count it in your meal plan.

4. Gotta Keep Moving

You’ve got a lot on your plate this time of year (literally), and physical activity can get crowded out. But being active is your secret holiday weapon; it can help make up for eating more than usual and reduce stress during this most stressful time of year. Get moving with friends and family, such as taking a walk after a holiday meal. 

5. Get Your Zzz’s In

Going out more and staying out later often means cutting back on sleep. Sleep loss can make it harder to control your blood sugar, and when you’re sleep deprived you’ll tend to eat more and prefer high-fat, high-sugar food.  Aim for 7 hours per night to guard against mindless eating.

“Most of all, remember what the season is about—celebrating and connecting with the people you care about. When you focus more on the fun, it’s easier to focus less on the food.” 

See that wasn’t so bad! Now lets move along to what the American Heart Association has to say…

“This guide includes great tips and recipes to help you navigate the holiday season in a healthy way. Here are some simple ways you and your family can eat healthy. Visit heart.org/healthyeating to learn more.”

Include

• Fruits and vegetables • Whole grains • Beans and legumes • Nuts and seeds • Fish & skinless poultry, or plant-based alternatives • Fat-free and low-fat dairy products • Healthier fats and nontropical oils.

Limit

• Sodium and salt • Saturated fat • Sweets and added sugars, including sugar-sweetened beverages • Red meats — if you choose to eat red meat, select the leanest cuts.

Avoid

• Trans fat and partially hydrogenated oils

Tips

  • Choose wisely, even with healthier foods. Ingredients and nutrient content can vary by brand and preparation.
  • Compare nutrition information on package labels and select products with the lowest amounts of sodium, added sugars, saturated fat and trans fat, and no partially hydrogenated oils.
  • Watch your calorie intake. To maintain weight, consume only as many calories as you use up through physical activity. If you want to lose weight, consume fewer calories or burn more calories.
  • Eat reasonable portions. Often this is less than you are served.
  • Eat a wide variety of foods to get all the nutrients your body needs.
  • Prepare and eat healthier meals at home. You’ll have more control over ingredients.
  • Look for the Heart-Check mark to easily identify foods that can be part of an overall healthy diet. Learn more at heartcheck.org 

    **You can find delicious alternative recipes for family meals from the A.H.A. here.

 

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“Recovery After Stroke: Coping with Emotions” via National Stroke Association.

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*The complete article can be found here.

Dealing with a flood of emotions can be hard for stroke survivors. Some emotions are normal responses to the changes in your life after stroke. Others are common but should not be considered a normal part of stroke recovery. If you suffer from depression, anxiety or emotions that are not in line with the occasion, seek help.

Dealing with Depression

Grieving for what you have lost is good for you. But when sadness turns to depression, it’s time to act. Depression can take hold right after a stroke, during rehabilitation (rehab) or after you go home. It can be – but not always – caused by brain damage from the stroke. Mild or major, it is the most common emotional problem faced by survivors.

Your treatment may include counseling, medicine or both.

Depression symptoms include:

  •  Feeling sad or “empty” most of the time
  •  Loss of interest or pleasure in ordinary activities
  •  Fatigue or feeling “slowed down”
  •  Sudden trouble sleeping or oversleeping
  •  Sudden loss of appetite or weight gain
  •  Being unable to concentrate, remember or make decisions like you used to
  •  Feeling worthless or helpless
  •  Feelings of guilt
  •  Ongoing thoughts of death or suicide, suicide planning or attempts
  • A sudden change in how easily you are annoyed  Crying all the time

    Some useful tips:

     Make the most of rehab; the more you recover, the better you will feel

    Spend time with family and friends

     Maintain your quality of life by staying active and doing things you enjoy

     Seek help soon after you note symptom

Having Extreme Anxiety

Anxiety is an overwhelming sense of worry or fear. It can include increased sweating or heart rate. Among stroke survivors, feelings of anxiety are common. Often, stroke survivors suffer from both depression and anxiety at the same time.

Anxiety can affect rehab progress, daily living, relationships and quality of life. So, be sure to seek help right away.

Anxiety symptoms include:

  •   Ongoing worrying, fear, restlessness and irritability that don’t seem to let up
  •   Low energy
  •   Poor concentration
  •   Muscle tension
  •   Feeling panicky and out of breath
  •   Scary rapid heart beat
  •   Shaking
  •   Headache
  •   Feeling sick to your stomach

    Again, treatment may include counseling, medicine or both.

Uncontrolled Emotions

Do you find yourself laughing or crying at all the wrong times? If so, you may suffer from Pseudobulbar Affect (PBA). Also called emotional incontinence or pathologic lability, PBA is a common medical problem among stroke survivors. It can cause you to laugh at a funeral or cry at a comedy club. It can even make you cry uncontrollably for little or no reason. For this, it is often confused with depression. But, PBA is not depression.

People with PBA are unable to control their emotional expressions the way they used to. When this happens in social settings, they feel embarrassed, frustrated and angry. They also sense that others are uneasy. They may avoid work, public places and family get-togethers. This can lead to feelings of fear, shame and isolation.

There is no treatment approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) for PBA, though antidepressant drugs can help.

These things may help you cope with PBA:

  •  Be open about it. Warn people that you cannot always control your emotions.
  • Explain that the emotions you show on the outside don’t always reflect how you feel on the inside.
  •  Distract yourself. If you feel an outburst coming on, focus on something boring or unrelated. Try counting the number of items on a shelf.
  •   Note the posture you take when crying. When you think you are about to cry, change your posture.
  •   Breathe in and out slowly until you are in control.
  •   Relax your forehead, shoulders and other muscles that tense up when crying.

    What Can Help

  •   Ask your doctor about emotional changes and symptoms early on.
  •   Ask your family to stimulate your interest in people and social activities.
  •   Stay as active as possible and stay involved in your hobbies.
  •   Set goals and measure accomplishment.
  •   Plan daily activities to provide structure and sense of purpose.
  • Stay involved with people, thoughts and activities that you enjoy.

    Get information on stroke recovery from National Stroke Association. Visit http://www.stroke.org or call 1- 800-STROKES (1-800-787- 6537).

    Contact your local stroke association. Join a stroke support group. Other survivors will understand your issues, and offer support and ideas to help you manage your emotions.

     

    Speak openly and honestly to your caregivers about your emotional changes. They’ll be glad you did, and together you can work out a solution.

     

    Professionals Help:

     Psychologists, psychiatrists and other mental health professionals experienced with stroke-related emotional disorders.

     

    Rehabilitation is a lifetime commitment and an important part of recovering from a stroke. Through rehabilitation, you relearn basic skills such as talking, eating, dressing and walking. Rehabilitation can also improve your strength, flexibility and endurance. The goal is to regain as much independence as possible.

    Remember to ask your doctor, “Where am I on my stroke recovery journey?

Fayette Encore Patient of the Month, Sherman Lee.

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We would like to recognize our Fayette Encore Patient of the Month, Sherman Lee. Sherman is a native of Fayette, AL and has been coming to our clinic to receive physical therapy after his total knee replacement. He has been receiving therapy treatment for 2 months now and has been improving greatly! Keep up the good work Mr. Lee!

“I have been to Encore before at the Winfield location. This is a great bunch of professionals and I love the way they treat their patients. I want to stay with Encore.”

-Mr. Lee.

“The Link Between Nutrition and Pain Is too Strong to Ignore” via APTA.

By Joe Tatta, PT, DPT, via APTA

Here’s a situation I bet you see all too often in your practice: a patient or client comes to you to overcome pain and increase mobility, and you see almost immediately that working on the mechanics of motion won’t be enough—they could really benefit from some lifestyle changes as well. Frequently, one of those changes involves thinking more carefully about the food they’re putting into their bodies.

Despite Hippocrates’ oft-quoted “Let food be thy medicine,” most physicians receive only a few hours of instruction about nutrition and coaching to help patients change their eating habits. Yet studies like this one from the National Institutes of Health show nutritional education becomes an incredibly useful tool to improve overall health outcomes for patients and specifically reduce inflammation.

As PTs, we are presented with a real opportunity here. Research shows that PTs can play an active role in lifestyle-related interventions such as nutrition. Providing information on nutrition will put you ahead of the curve with your peers while improving your patients’ results.

Early in my practice, I saw how obesity often contributed to my patients’ pain. Once I began providing information on some simple diet and lifestyle strategies with my patients, many lost weight, felt better, and dramatically reduced their pain. Nutrition became the missing link to help my patients manage and relieve pain.

Over time, I’ve found that nutritional screening and informational strategies can make a difference in 5 conditions associated with pain that we often see in our practices:

  1. Inflammation. Copious inflammatory foods, including vegetable oils, populate the Western diet. Most observational and interventional studies show a traditional Mediterranean diet, rich in healthy fatty acids, fruits, vegetables and fiber, provides anti-inflammatory benefits. Among specific conditions, studies show a Mediterranean diet rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids and antioxidants provide anti-inflammatory effects that benefit individuals with rheumatoid arthritis. Epidemiologic and clinical evidence likewise shows an optimal diet can reduce inflammation that, among other things, contributes to metabolic syndrome.
  2. Obesity. As we all know, a vicious cycle ensues as obesity contributes to numerous chronic pain conditions, and the pain in turn can lead to sedentary behavior that increases obesity. Studies prove what I’ve seen countless times in my own practice: weight loss must become a crucial aspect of overall pain rehabilitation.
  3. Osteoarthritis (OA). Studies have shown a relationship between pain and food intake among overweight and obese patients with OA. Fortunately, obesity is the most modifiable risk factor for knee OA. Of course, pain management is crucial to reducing OA symptoms. But even that may have a nutrition connection: one systematic review found scientific evidence to support some specific nutritional interventions–including omega 3 fatty acids–to relieve symptoms among patients with OA. Studies also show various nutrient deficiencies, including vitamins C and D as well as selenium, contribute to OA.
  4. Autoimmune disease. NIH estimates that 23.5 million Americans have an autoimmune disease (compare that with cancer, which affects 13 million Americans). Over 80 autoimmune disorders exist, including Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and type 1 diabetes. Of course, genetic predisposition, environmental factors (including infections), and gut dysbiosis play major roles in autoimmune disease development. But increasingly, researchers believe adverse dietary changes over the past 50 years–including gluten intolerances, altered gut bacteria, and vitamin D deficiencies–also contribute to that increased rate of autoimmune diseases. Chief among those changes is our prevalent high-sugar, high-salt, processed-food heavy diet that paves the pathway for autoimmune diseases. Nutrient-poor diets only exacerbate that problem: evidence shows vitamin D, vitamin A, selenium, zinc, omega-3 fatty acids, probiotics, and flavanol deficiencies contribute to autoimmune diseases.
  5. Prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes affects 29.1 million Americans (that’s over 9% of the population) and paves the way for serious complications such as heart disease, blindness, kidney failure, and lower-extremity amputations. Diabetic neuropathic pain, a common diabetes complication and the most common form of neuropathic pain, affects over 90% of people with diabetes. Studies show increased musculoskeletal pain in patients with type 2 diabetes adversely impacts body mass index, quality of life, physical function, and physical activity abilities. The link between diabetes and nutrition is a fundamental one that should never be set aside.

Working with patients suffering these and other conditions, I’m often impressed how optimal nutrition becomes the needle-mover to alleviate pain and help people heal. So how can a PT incorporate these considerations into practice? Here are a few simple tactics you can use right now:

  1. Ask nutrition-related questions during your initial consultation. Simple things like “do you take a multivitamin” or “about how many vegetable servings do you eat a week” can help lead to gradual dietary tweaks that yield impressive results.
  2. Have your patients keep a 24-hour food diary. Beyond establishing adherence and accountability, asking patients to write down everything they eat for 24 hours provides insight to their daily eating habits. Once you have that insight, you can help them gradually improve those habits.
  3. Offer some simple information. Rather than impose a major dietary overhaul, ask patients to do things that don’t seem so overwhelming; for example, to increase their water intake, or eliminate processed foods and sugar.
  4. Create simple, attainable goals. Begin by allowing your patients to experience success in some way. You might ask a patient to lose 5 pounds over 3 weeks, or provide information about incorporating more omega-3 fats into their diet combined with their exercise program. These goals are doable, and they can provide your patient with the confidence to take on more challenging targets.
  5. Offer your patients other ways to access information on better nutrition. Providing your patients with collateral sources of information—a helpful blog post, or an engaging book on nutrition—helps to reinforce the idea that the benefits of what they’re doing are well-established, and that they’re not alone in their journey toward healthier living. During a subsequent visit, ask patients if they got anything out of what you shared. The more reliable, readable information they receive, the better the chances that they’ll begin to become genuinely interested in the topic themselves, and for the long run. Over time, I’ve even had a few patients recommend books and blogs to me. Refer patients to nutrition and dietary professionals when their needs exceed the professional scope and your personal scope of practice.

If you’ve incorporated nutritional screening and information into your practice, what did you find was the most challenging aspect? Did you see results when patients made those changes? Share your thoughts below.

Joe Tatta, PT, DPT, is a board-certified nutrition specialist and functional medicine practitioner who specializes in treating lifestyle-related musculoskeletal, metabolic, and autoimmune health issues. He is the creator of the Healing Pain Online Summit and The Healing Pain Podcast, and is the author of Heal Your Pain Now: A revolutionary program to reset your brain and body for a pain-free life by Da Capo Press. Learn more by visiting www.drjoetatta.com/apta.

Oak Grove Encore Athlete of the Month, Caedon Malone.

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Congratulations to the Oak Grove Encore Athlete of the Month, Caedon Malone! Caedon is a 16 year old, junior athlete at Oak Grove High School in Mississippi. He plays center on the Warriors Varsity Football Team and wears jersey #57. The Warriors football team is ranked #32 in the state of Mississippi and ended their season with 3-4 in district and 5-7 overall. Keep up the good work, Caedon, and Good Luck your senior year!

THE NO GYM WORKOUT: FIVE FUN ALTERNATIVES

 

“Are you looking for a no gym workout? We know hitting the gym can be a great thing. The benefits of a membership generally outweigh the negatives by a landslide. That being said, sometimes it can be difficult to get to the gym in the first place. Whether you’re traveling across the country or stuck inside during a snowstorm, there are some awesome exercise alternatives out there.  Seriously, if you can work out with a towel, you can work out anywhere.”

Here are five fun workouts you can complete whenever, wherever:

HIIT Hotel Workout from Anne Smiles

You don’t have to skip your workout if the hotel lacks a gym. Did you know you could complete a high intensity interval workout using just the bed? Bonus: you can take a nap right after you finish. View it here.

Paper Plate Workout from Fitful Focus

Don’t worry about having enough equipment. This lower body workout serves up some serious moves on basic paper plates. Hand towels work well, too, on wood or tile floors. View it here.

At Home Workout from The Fit Cookie

Why hit the gym when you can complete a quality workout right in your very own home? A few weights are a great investment and will help guarantee that you won’t miss the gym a bit. View it here.

The Chair Workout via Run Pretty

Pull up a chair and don’t just have a seat. When you can work out with a chair, you can work out anywhere. A park bench will work just as well, which means you can squeeze in a workout while the kids play. View it here. 

5-Minute Wakeup Workout from Food Faith Fitness

Start your day off on the right track with this quick bodyweight workout. It can also work well for a midday pick me up! We all know the afternoon slump is real, you guys. View it here.

What’s your go-to travel or at-home workout? Leave a comment and let us know!

 

 

**More of this article can be found at http://www.bumblebee.com/no-gym-workout-5-fun-exercise-alternatives/.

7 Things Your Yoga Teacher Wants to Tell You

 

“I’ve taught yoga for over 10 years to students around the world and I’ve come up with a few things that every yoga teacher wants you to know. Don’t worry, I’m not here to yell or judge! But even if you’re hitting the mat a few times a week and holding every pose perfectly, you may not be getting the most from your yoga practice. Now, it’s easy to rattle off a long list of yoga no-no’s, but there are also crucial lessons your teacher is probably dying to share with you. Here are my big seven. Take notes and enjoy the ride!

You don’t need to practice yoga every day
It’s easy to fall so deeply in love with yoga that you want to practice non-stop. I hear you—but between travel, work, and family, you can end up depleting your body and mind of energy if you’re not careful. Instead, respect your body and remember that you’re often just as powerful taking time off as you are pushing yourself to the max. Find your balance.

There is no such thing as a typical yoga body
If you were to ask someone what a yogi looks like they’d probably say long, lean, flexible, and strong. Pop culture has definitely influenced that stereotype, but as a teacher who travels the world meeting yogis of every age, gender and race, I can tell you clearly—there is no perfect yoga body. Some of the most amazing yoga I’ve ever seen has come from bodies that were outside that stereotype. You can be curvy, slight, young, or old—yoga is for everyone.

A calming, restorative practice is just as powerful as a strong flow class
In this day and age, we go and we go hard. We rock jobs, run families, keep up on style trends and hit our workouts like a boss. There’s so much go-go-go-go that often the perfect remedy isn’t a wicked hard yoga class but one that will balance you out by slowing you down. Taking the time to breath, stretch, relax and meditate is crucial to giving us the mental strength to carry on at a high pace. So remember that these restorative style classes are a great compliment to your power/flow classes and that you don’t always need 90 minutes of sweat to feel restored. Sometimes all it takes is 20 minutes of focus, peace and quiet.

Enjoy being a beginner
I’m a total overachiever who gets frustrated easily when I can’t master a challenge. But yoga taught me that the journey is even greater than the result. Sure, being a beginner can be a bumpy, ego-bruising time. But it’s also a time when you’re excited, ambitious, and eager to soak everything in. Enjoy this journey, because it’s only a matter of time before you figure it out, master it, and long for something new that exhilarates you the same way.

You don’t need to be flexible to be good at yoga
If I had a nickel for every time I heard someone say, “I’m not flexible enough to do yoga,” I’d be able to afford a closet full of designer shoes. It’s like saying you’re too dirty to take a bath! The whole purpose of yoga is to help you with your flexibility. Give it time—yoga is here to help you out, not embarrass or demean you. And in the meantime, try these stretches to improve your flexibility.

Difficult poses aren’t necessarily better
Yoga has officially entered the age of Instagram, where people post mind-blowing pictures of incredibly challenging poses daily (and I certainly participate… that’s me in the picture above!). They may be inspiring or frustrating depending on your skill level, but here’s the thing: Harder doesn’t always mean better! One of the most common blunders is being over ambitious, pushing towards a pose beyond your current ability and then ending up hurt. Next thing you know you’re too injured to practice for weeks all because of one silly ego slip. Remember, the goal of yoga is to feel better and find balance. So if a simple standing pose and hip opener fills you up more than a foot-behind-the-head, do what works for you! That is your perfect form of yoga.

Yoga isn’t about how you look, it’s about you feel
This one is crucial! Forget the hard poses or the fancy-patterned leggings with matching bra. All of these things are fun, but at the end of the day all that matters is how you feel. Did the practice improve your mood? Calm your mind? Improve your energy? Awesome. Were you in sweatpants? Did you comb your hair? Did you set a world record of Chaturangas? Who cares! Stick to how you feel and you’ll shine no matter what.”

Taken from Women’s Health Mag: http://www.womenshealthmag.com/fitness/yoga-teacher-tips