Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Exercise Boosts Memory

We all know that exercise is good for our bodies -- there's a mountain of research that indicates exercise helps prolong our lives, increase our sense of well being, reduce the effects of many ailments, you can learn more here, and even lessen our chances of contracting a life-threatening condition like heart disease, diabetes, or cancer.



Now there’s evidence that exercise can help with brain function also, specifically in the area of memory.

A recent study by chiropractors in the Netherlands found that when subjects did 35 minutes of interval training on an exercise bike they performed significantly better on memory tests than people who did not exercise.
 
 

The memory test was 40 minutes long, and it involved remembering pictures. Interestingly, the researchers found that when subjects exercised immediately after the first part of the test, they did not do any better at remembering the pictures than people who didn’t exercise at all. The real boost in memory performance was when subjects exercised four hours after they did the first part of the memory exercise. When they came back later for memory testing, their results were significantly better than the other groups in the study.
 
 

The chiropractor in this research study are not sure why this group did so much better, and they plan to do more studies. The bottom line, however, is that recent scientific research has definitely shown a link between exercise and memory, in particular that exercise enhances output of brain chemicals known as catecholamines, which are essential to memory and learning.

So, if you want to improve your memory, get out there and ride your bike!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

NATURAL ALTERNATIVES TO PAIN MEDICATIONS



Pain medications are a big business in the U.S., and millions of them are sold every year, for relief from all sorts of muscle aches and pains. Many people pop a couple of pain pills even before they experience any symptoms, perhaps on their way to the gym, to deal with any muscle soreness from their workouts. 


But even over-the-counter pain medications can have their problems. They're not addictive, like the opioid drugs that have caused such an epidemic in the last ten years, but long term use can cause heart and kidney problems. Increasingly, people are turning to herbal remedies to get relief from pain, because they can be just as effective without any of the problems associated with the standard pain medications. 


Here are a few popular herbal pain remedies.
. Arnica Montana. This formula can bring relief to arthritis sufferers, especially when use as a cream or gel.
. Capsaicin. Another topical cream formulation, Capsaicin can bring relief from neck pain, various types of arthritis, and neuropathy caused by diabetes.
. Cod liver oil. Although cod liver oil has been the butt of many jokes because of its taste, there is research that shows the omega-3 fatty acids in it can lessen some types of pain from inflammation. A local Jamison chiropractor recommends taking up to two teaspoons of it daily.
. Willow bark extract. This remedy has shown a particular effectiveness in treating low back pain.
There are other effective methods in addition to herbal remedies, including meditation and relaxation techniques, yoga, supplements, and local chiropractic treatments


Try considering a different approach the next time you deal with painful muscles or joins, rather than just reaching for the bottle of acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

YOU’RE NOT INVINCIBLE


Young people are notorious for not thinking much about the future, especially when it comes to their bodies. They’re usually in great health, their bodies are strong and flexible, and because of that they don’t hesitate to lift things and expend physical effort that would cause a person in their 50s to back off.

But maybe they should hesitate.

A new study found by the best local chiropractor has found that heavy physical work at a young age can have long term effects on the back. The Finnish Institute of Occupational Health surveyed more than 700 Finnish men and women over a twenty year period starting in 1986, when they were between 18 and 24 years old, to determine the long term effects of heavy physical work.
 
 

What they found was startling.

Twenty percent of those surveyed reported a problem with radiating lower back pain. In addition, the chances of having this type of back pain in middle age more than doubled for the group of men who had done heavy physical work in their younger years.

It’s easy to figure out what’s happening here. Young men in particular are often prone to muscle their way through jobs without using proper lifting techniques. If you’re 21 years old, in good health, and you’ve never experienced lower back pain, you think you’re invincible. You’ll go ahead and lift that heavy piece of furniture and move it without a second thought. As the Finnish study shows, however, a careless attitude like that will come back to haunt you years later.



We need to educate young people on the importance of using proper lifting techniques, stretching and flexibility exercises, and also to speak to a Warrington PA chiropractor if an employer is asking them to do physical work that could result in harm to them.

It’s not easy for a 21-year-old to think about the long-term effects of his or her actions, but it’s important to ensure a healthy, pain-free life later on.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

FIVE WAYS TO REDUCE STRESS

The modern world is suffering from an epidemic of stress. According to a report shared by the best local chiropractor, three quarters of all Americans say they have had at least one symptom of stress in the past 30 days. That number represents 182 million people, and that's just in the United States!




Stress is something that is affecting the lives of more people than diseases like cancer and diabetes. It's been identified as a factor in a host of ailments and diseases, both physical and mental.



What’s causing all this stress? A Warrington PA Chiropractor says that money and job issues are stressful for 60 percent or more of Americans, while family responsibilities are stressful for 47 percent, and personal health is stressful for 46 percent.

Whatever the cause of our stress, we need to learn to deal with it in a healthy manner, or it will cause problems for us. Here are five ways to handle your stress better.



Simplify -- A complicated life is a stress enabler. Prune away the activities in your life that don’t resonate with who you are, and you’ll be more relaxed.

Pay attention to your health -- Eat a healthy diet and get daily exercise, and you’ll be able to handle stress without letting it affect you negatively.

Be here now  -- Let go of the past, and stop worrying about the future. Live in the present, and you’ll be happier.

Practice peace -- The sages had it right: maintain a peaceful attitude, don’t hold grudges, and be slow to anger.

Say thank you -- Gratitude is a great stress-reducer. Count your blessings every day, and you’ll achieve serenity.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

HOW TO FIGHT THE SLOUCHING EFFECT

 
Alot of adults can probably remember a time in their teenage years when their parents constantly reminded them to "stop slouching". The teen years are awkward ones, when our bodies are changing rapidly and we experience growth spurts where we can grow several inches in a matter of months. According to a local Warrington chiropractor, teens often develop bad posture, because they're not used to the changes in their bodies (and if they've gotten taller they might slouch just to keep from getting noticed).



Unfortunately, that slouching habit can last far beyond the teenage years, and many adults still slouch when they stand or sit. Years of this poor posture can weaken our muscles, especially those in the shoulders, upper back, and all the way down to the abdominals.

When your muscles are working properly, they keep your body strong and minimize pain. When they’re stretched the wrong way because of slouching, it can lead to neck, shoulder, and lower back injuries. 

Here are some easy exercises to help you regain strength in your back muscles.

1. Pec Release. Face a wall while standing. Place a ball (a lacrosse ball works well for this) two inches below your collarbone and near your armpit. Lean into the ball and move back and forth until you find a tender area. Then, move your arm several times up and down and forward and back. Repeat for about a minute.

2. Wall Dips. Stand four feet from a wall and face it. Keep your feet shoulder width apart, with your knees bent. Lean forward and, with your arms straight, put your palms against the wall, thumbs up and fingers pointing sideways.

Bend forward at the waist, drop your chest toward the ground, and push your hips and butt backward.

Shrug your shoulder blades as you bend, and press your palms into the wall to make the upper back muscles engage.

Do 3 sets of 15 reps on each side.

These are just two exercises a Warrington PA chiropractor offers to help you strengthen your back. There are many more. The important thing is to work your back on a regular basis to fight the ill effects of slouching.

Monday, October 17, 2016

LISTEN BEFORE YOU CREATE AN EXERCISE PROGRAM

One of the biggest challenges for nursing home residents is staying active. There are many reasons why people fall into sedentary habits in nursing homes, including physical and mental limitations, fear of injury, the effects of depression, etc., but according to a Doylestown chiropractor, the truth is that physical activity prolongs health and life, and should be encouraged. There are many studies that show lack of exercise can increase the chances of a fall, or contribute to other health problems.


We all know this, and unfortunately staffers, local chiropractors, friends and family can sometimes put pressure on a nursing home resident to start an exercise program that's not right for them, just for the sake of doing something. There is no one-size-fits-all program, though, because nursing home residents are individuals with their own unique needs. Not everyone can get on the floor and do 45 minutes of hot yoga -- even a 25 year old, let alone a 65 year old -- nor should they.
 

The best strategy is to get the nursing home resident involved in the decision about starting an exercise and wellness plan. If they have personal involvement it will help them stay motivated. Staffers and family should listen carefully to residents and find out what they like to do, what their goals are, and what would give them a sense of accomplishment. Forcing an exercise program on someone is just a recipe for failure. For instance, a resident who just wants to be able to walk well enough to go outside and stroll around the garden on a sunny day will only get frustrated by a program with more rigorous goals, and will soon give up.

Listening well is the most important step in creating a successful exercise program for a nursing home resident.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

YOGA POSES TO HELP YOU SLEEP BETTER


We all lead busy lives, and some of us cram so much into our day that we don't pay attention to the need for sleep. A local chiropractor tells us that a good night's sleep plays a key role in health and longevity, and it's important to get the proper quantity and quality of sleep.

The problem is that even when we go to bed at a reasonable hour, we sometimes can't fall asleep because our bodies and minds are full of the residue of stress from our busy day. Our muscles are tense and our minds are agitated, so we're not able to fall into a deep, restorative sleep.

Yoga, offered by a chiropractor near me, is great for stretching and soothing tense muscles and relaxing an agitated mind. Here are a few yoga poses to help you get a better night's sleep.
 

. Child’s Pose. Kneel on the floor with your big toes touching but your knees spread apart. Slowly bend forward and walk your hands outward on the floor till your arms are straight. Touch your forehead to the floor and breathe in and out through your nose ten times.

. Forward Fold. From a standing position with your feet together, inhale and bring your hands up to the ceiling. Then, exhale as you bend forward, bringing your chest toward your thighs. Caution: to avoid back strain, keep your knees bent. This is a great pose for releasing tension in your neck. Hold the pose for as long as you’re comfortable, letting it relax and stretch your back and leg muscles.

. Straight Leg Twist. Sit on the floor with your right leg straight and your left knee bent, with the left foot flat on the floor. Wrap your right arm around your left knee and turn your body so you’re looking over your left shoulder. For support, place your left hand on the floor behind your left shoulder. Hold the pose for a few seconds, then repeat on the other side.

. Waterfall. Lie with your back on the floor next to a wall. Slowly walk your feet up the wall as you move your bottom till it touches the base of the wall. Spread your arms out to the side. Close your eyes and breathe deeply for as long as you are comfortable. This is a great way to stimulate blood flow, relieve aches and pains in your legs, and calm your mind before sleep. 

With these simple yoga poses from your Doylestown chiropractor, you’ll be able to release the tension from your day and prepare yourself for a great night’s sleep.