About Me

Friday, June 29, 2012

Beauty Foods For Younger looking Skin

When I was in high school and college, I got a summer job as a lifeguard. All those hours in the sun gave me what I thought then was a beautiful, bronzy tan.
Today I realize the sun exposure just accelerated my skin's aging process. Truth be told, I did wear sunscreen, but not always as much as a dermatologist would recommend. )
Turns out, the vast majority of UV light that I was soaking up was UVA. UVA is a major contributor to premature skin aging (think: fine lines and wrinkles) because it penetrates deeper than UVB light and damages skin cells before there's any visible sunburn.
Even worse, collagen-the fibrous protein that keeps skin firm, youthful-looking and wrinkle-free-begins to decline starting in your twenties!
Now that I'm older and wiser-and not anxious to look the part-I'm wearing more sunscreen to protect my skin from the outside in. And because I'm a registered dietitian and nutrition editor, I've seen the science that shows eating more of these foods will protect my skin from the inside out.
Keep your skin looking younger-for the rest of your life-with these 4 foods:
Strawberries: Eating more vitamin C-rich foods, such as strawberries, may help to ward off wrinkles and age-related dryness, suggests research from 2007 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Vitamin C's skin-smoothing effects may be due to its ability to mop up free radicals produced from ultraviolet rays and also its role in collagen synthesis. (Vitamin C is essential for collagen production.) You can find vitamin C in a multitude of cosmetics-of which some have been shown to be effective in protecting skin-but why not go straight to the source for a tasty boost of C: red bell peppers, papaya, broccoli and oranges are other excellent sources. (
Tomatoes: Tomatoes get their red hue from lycopene, a carotenoid that may help to keep your skin smooth. In a study published in 2008 in the European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics, researchers found that of the 20 individuals studied, those who had higher skin concentrations of lycopene had smoother skin. Boost your lycopene intake with fresh summer produce like watermelon and carrots too.
Tofu: Tofu and other soyfoods, such as edamame and soymilk, may help to preserve skin-firming collagen because they are rich in isoflavones. In a study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, mice fed isoflavones and exposed to ultraviolet radiation had fewer wrinkles and smoother skin than mice that were exposed to UV light but didn't get isoflavones. The researchers believe that isoflavones help prevent collagen breakdown. (
Tuna: Eating tuna-and other omega-3-rich fish, such as salmon, sardines and trout-may help keep your skin looking youthful thanks to the omega-3 fat EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid). EPA has been shown to preserve collagen. 
How do you keep your skin healthy?

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Yoga postures for a strong back and neck

Have you ever experienced a nagging pain in your shoulder blade area that just won't go away? How about chronic neck tension while sitting at your desk? Do massages feel great but a few hours later the pain returns?
Upper back and neck tension are complaints that are becoming more prevalent in physical therapy offices. With the increasing use of computers, desk jobs and time sitting in traffic, it’s hard to avoid these aches and pains regardless of how active you are.
Here's why--most of our daily activities are done in front of us while seated. How many times a day do you spend driving, writing, typing or eating? Over time, gravity takes over and the shoulders begin to round forward, the chest becomes constricted, the head juts out, and the upper back becomes stretched out or rounded.
The result of this posture is tight pectorals, shortened neck and weak upper back muscles. Consequently, smaller muscles that were not originally designed to be 'postural muscles' have to kick in and work hard to keep our bodies upright. In addition, certain sports including cycling and running can exacerbate the problem. Pain in the upper back and neck is often just a sign that your muscles are tired of doing a job they weren't meant for. The solution is to fix the problem, not the symptoms.
In order to combat chronic tension in these areas, you first need to work on stretching the tight structures that prevent you from sitting or standing with ideal alignment. If you strengthen the upper back without stretching the front of the chest, you will just keep falling back into the same faulty posture. Once you open up the chest and stretch out the back of the neck, then it’ll be time to work on strengthening the upper back.
Yoga is a wonderful way to accomplish both stretching and strengthening in a gentle and effective way. Here are a few suggested poses that you can work on at home or at the office.

Postural Awareness and Breathing

 Deep breathing is the first step to relieving neck tension. When we breathe in a shallow manner, the muscles of the neck (instead of the diaphragm) contract. To begin to breathe deeply using the diaphragm, sit upright at the edge of a chair with your feet planted firmly on the floor. Make sure the knees are lower than your hips. Place your hands on your belly and close your eyes. As you inhale, feel your belly rise into your hands and as you exhale, feel it fall. Notice any tension in the neck and relax your neck muscles as you direct the breath into the belly.
As you breathe, bring your awareness into the front of the chest and the collar bones. Broaden your collar bones so the front of the chest lifts up. Drop your shoulder blades away from the ears and lift the crown of the head towards the sky.
Continue to breathe this way for 10 deep breaths. Try to do this every hour by setting an alarm as a reminder

"The Clock" (Pec Stretch)

 Stand along side a wall and place your right hand up on the wall to 12 o'clock. Slowly move your hand from 12 to 1, 2 and finally to the position at 3 o'clock. Take your left hand and place it on the right rib cage. Take a deep inhalation and as you exhale, pull the rib cage forward without moving the right arm. You should feel a stretch in front of the right shoulder or down the right arm. Hold for six deep breaths. To intensify the stretch, move closer to the wall. Repeat on the other side. If there is any tingling in the arm, move away from the wall until it resolves or discontinue the exercise.

Arms Overhead With Strap

 Using a yoga strap or belt, take your arms overhead, shoulder-distance apart. Make sure the palms face away from each other. If you cannot straighten your elbows in this position, take the arms wider on the belt. Drop the chin into the chest in order to relax the neck muscles and pull the strap apart. Hold for six deep breaths and repeat two times.

Downward Dog at the Wall

 Stand facing a wall with your hands at waist-height. Walk your feet back into a table top position with your feet directly underneath your hips. Lift the sitting bones towards the sky as you press the hands into the wall. Feel as if your heart is melting towards the floor. If you feel a great deal of stretching in the hamstrings, keep the knees slightly bent. Hold for six deep breaths, focusing on opening the chest and lengthening the spine.
As with all things, consistency is the key and the more regularly you practice these exercises, the better off you'll be. Ideally, you should get up every hour to stretch even for a minute or two. Remember--we are fighting a battle against gravity. With regular practice and the right guidance you can stand tall, proud and pain-free for life.
It is possible that your pain is coming from a different condition and therefore is important to consult with a doctor or physical therapist prior to beginning any exercise program. 

 to stop, breathe and notice your posture.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

How to Prevent Sports Injuries

If you are an athlete, then you know that injuries are as natural to sports as winning or losing. 10 million sports injuries occur each year, even though exercising, thinking ahead and wearing the right protective gear can prevent many of them.

You don't need expensive gear to prevent injuries; just the basics and a bit of knowledge. Here are some of the most common forms of injuries in football, hockey, baseball, and tennis, and tips on how to prevent them.



Concussions make up a large part of football injuries. Many athletes have had their careers shortened due to concussions, as in the case of Troy Aikman, who was waived from the Dallas Cowboys after suffering nine head traumas during his twelve years in the NFL. This type of injury can also be fatal.

Although it seems evident enough, keeping your head up is a good way of preventing the injury, and reporting even the mildest concussion to the team physician can prevent grave consequences. A deadly form of concussion called second impact syndrome can kill negligent athletes. It occurs when an athlete suffers a second concussion, while the effects of the previous one have not yet subsided.

An athlete could have a concussion when he loses consciousness after a hit, or experiences memory loss, dizziness, headaches, nausea, and loss of balance. If any of those symptoms are present, a physician should be notified.

Properly strapping a helmet will prevent needless head trauma and wearing a mouth-guard can reduce the risk of concussion.

Ankle Injuries

Ankle sprains and other ankle related injuries account for 10-15% of all football injuries. This is due to the amount of running and sprinting football players do. Some speculate synthetic grass fields might also be part of the problem.

Athletes whose ankle produces a cracking sound should see a prolotherapist, especially if they had an ankle injury in the past. A prolotherapist can determine if ligaments are weakened and thus prone to injury. He or she may also propose ways of strengthening the indisposed body part.

Some ankles click after an injury because they are not properly healed. Ironically, conventional therapy prevents ankle injuries from properly recovering. Resting, applying ice, compression, and elevation decrease blood supply to the injured area and prevent healing. Movement, analgesics and exercise are the best ways to heal ankle sprains.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Master Wing Loves Me!

 An Excerpt from Master Wings Blog...

My second sponsor Lackernick Family Chiropractic adjusts me and keeps me healthy from all of the punishment I put my body through. I absolutely would not be able to train at the intensity level that I do without Dr. Lackernicks expert care. He’s adjusted everything on me from my collar bone to my knees and feet. I did a somewhat tongue and cheek video promoting his business that he’s in the process of uploading to his website. Additionally every time he adjusts me I “tweet” about it in a funny or interesting way. I always joke that Dr. Lackernick is such a good Chiropractor, he can resurrect the dead!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Beginners Running Tips

    Apparel Tips

  1. Wear spandex shorts under your regular running shorts so you don’t chafe “down there.”
  2. Cotton socks will only lead to blisters; invest in socks designed for running.
  3. Ladies, do not skimp on a bra. Even if it costs more than your shoes it’s still a bargain.
  4. Buy running clothes you look good in and that will motivate you to run.
  5. Buy new running clothes at the end of the season when stores dump the old season’s line. Think clearance!
  6. Community

  7. Join your local running club—check with your local running store fitness center and/or recreation department to find one.
  8. Volunteer at a local race—meet runners support runners and connect with your Community.
  9. Manners

  10. Remember to say “Thank You!” to race volunteers (e.g. when you get that cup of water at the aid station) and family and friends who support you.
  11. Conscientiously share the trail with walkers, bikers and other runners.
  12. Always try to balance running with the people you love by making a schedule that involves and is considerate of everyone.
  13. Don’t carry loose change. It will annoy those who are running with you.
  14. Don’t neglect and irritate your family and friends by spending all your time running and talking about running.
  15. Motivation Tips

  16. Sign up for a race as soon as you feel up to it.
  17. Find a committed running partner. It is much harder to skip a run when you have someone else depending on you.
  18. Remember that you will have plateaus in your progress and tough days along the way.
  19. It gets easier.
  20. Accept and appreciate the fact that not every single run can be a good one.
  21. Be prepared to remove the words “can’t” and “never” from your vocabulary.
  22. “Do not compare yourself to others. Run within yourself and for yourself first.
  23. Don’t expect every run to be better than the last one; some of them will hurt.
  24. Don’t think too much about it or you won’t do it.
  25. Even a bad run is better then no run at all.
  26. If you normally run with music try skipping it and listening to your feet to hear your pace and your gait.
  27. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t experience weight loss immediately.
  28. Start a running blog and read other running blogs regularly.
  29. Running is not an excuse to triple your intake of doughnuts because runners gain weight too.
  30. Nutrition Tips

  31. Buy the powdered sports drink mix instead of premixed. It’s cheaper and more similar to race drink mixes.
  32. Each pound you lose makes running a little easier.
  33. Hydrate. Make it a habit to drink water throughout the day.
  34. If you are running very long distance drink enough electrolytes (e.g. Gatorade).
  35. On long runs eat something every hour—whether you feel like it or not.
  36. During longer runs if you don’t like to carry water take some cash in your pocket pouch or a shoe wallet. Run a route where there’s a corner store that you can use as a pit stop to pick up your water and maybe use the bathroom.
  37. Avoid eating spicy foods before running and the night before your long runs.
  38. To aid recovery the most crucial time to eat and drink is in the hour immediately after you run.
  39. Prevention Tips

  40. Use Vaseline or BodyGlide wherever things rub. They will help prevent blisters and chafing (guys don’t forget the nipples).
  41. Do not increase your mileage more than 10 percent per week.
  42. Guys: Band-Aids before the long runs. Your nipples will thank you in the shower afterwards.
  43. Log your mileage for your legs and your Shoes. Too much on either will cause you injury.
  44. If you are prone to shin splints and lower leg pain try running soft trails for your Training runs and save the asphalt for race day.
  45. Do not run two hard days back-to-back.
  46. Ice aches and pains immediately.
  47. Pay attention to your form. Try to run lightly to minimize impact that could lead to injury.
  48. Cut your Training by at least 30 percent to 50 percent every 4th or 5th week for recovery.
  49. When trail running don’t forget the bug spray.
  50. Neosporin (or another antibiotic cream) is good for chafed areas (if you didn’t use your BodyGlide!).
  51. Make sure you cut your toenails short enough so they don’t jam into your Shoes!
  52. Put some BodyGlide between your toes on long runs.
  53. Be careful about running on paths that force you to run consistently on a slant. It’s hard on the hips knees and IT bands.
  54. Don’t stretch before a run. Warm up by walking briskly or jogging slowly for several minutes.
  55. Do not ice for more than 20 minutes at a time.
  56. Do not use the hot tub after a race. It will increase inflammation and hinder healing.
  57. Frozen peas make a great ice pack for aches and pains. A thin t-towel wrapped around them makes the cold more comfortable.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Todays Tips for Healthy Skin

Be Mindful of the Sun
Broad-spectrum waterproof sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 is essential in minimizing wrinkles and damage, and more importantly in preventing skin cancer. Don’t forget to reapply every two to four hours, and even more often if you are in the water or perspiring. Between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. is when the sun’s rays are the strongest, so avoid the sun during this time period if you can.
Eat Healthy
A healthy diet full of fruits, vegetables, lean protein and whole grains can vastly improve the quality of your skin and help remedy issues such as oiliness, acne and dullness. Certain vitamins and nutrients such as Omega-3, Vitamin C, Vitamin A and Vitamin E have been shown to be especially helpful.
Manage Stress
Uncontrolled stress can lead to major skin issues. Taking the time to relax and do things you enjoy can help prevent skin problems such as acne and eczema. Cutting down your work load and making more time for yourself will have much greater benefits than healthy skin.
Get More Sleep
The benefits of getting at least eight hours of sleep per night are well documented. Besides reducing stress, helping prevent depression and increasing alertness, sleeping eight hours or more can help improve the quality of your skin.
Don’t Smoke
Smoking even occasionally can make your skin look older, causes wrinkles and decreases blood flow to the outer layers of your skin. It also damages the elastin and collagen in your skin, and depletes the skin of oxygen and nutrients.
Exercise Frequently
Exercise increases blood flow to the skin, carrying oxygen and nutrients to skin cells and keeping them healthy. The blood flow created by exercise also helps detoxify the skin from free radicals, clearing your skin of environmental toxins.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tips for neck Pain

Sometimes pain starts with the bang of a rear-end collision, but more often, the neck and its surrounding structures begin to ache after years of normal use, overuse, and misuse. Without knowing it, you may be encouraging neck and shoulder pain by the way you perform everyday activities. In general, try to keep your neck in a neutral position, which means your head balances directly over your shoulders and is not leaning forward or cocked to one side. Here are eight hints for achieving a healthy neck posture while performing everyday activities.

  1. At the computer or desk. When working at the computer or at a desk, keep your head balanced directly over your spine as much as possible. That means setting your chair height so both feet rest on the ground, and sitting with your buttocks far back in your chair, using a small pillow to support your lower back if needed. Properly adjusting the keyboard and monitor may be difficult or impossible with a laptop computer.

    You can plug a separate, full-size keyboard into a laptop to help you achieve better positioning. But no matter how perfect your office-chair posture, it’s important to get up, stretch, and move around every half hour. If you tend to get lost in your work, program your computer to flash a reminder.
  2. Telephone use. If you spend a lot of time on the phone, try to avoid leaning your head to one side. This is also important when you use a cell phone and aren’t sitting at your desk while you speak. A headset or speakerphone is a good option to help keep your head in a neutral position for hands-free talking. Headsets are available for both your desk phone and cell phone.
  3. Reading at home. If you are sitting in a chair, try to maintain an upright posture. Hold the book so that you don’t have to lean down or forward to see it. A pillow on your lap may help. If you must read in bed, sit up straight or use a specially designed wedge pillow. Or lie on your side with your neck straight and hold the book in front of you.
  4. Walking. Avoid high heels, which change the alignment of your body from the ground up, characteristically ending in a head-thrust-forward position that stresses neck muscles. This may be one reason women have neck pain more than men do.
  5. Carrying a bag. Choose a lightweight purse or backpack, and don’t overload. Don’t sling a backpack over one shoulder. Try switching to a fanny pack or a backpack designed to put weight on the hips instead of just the upper back. With heavier loads, use a wheeled pack or briefcase. If you must hoist a purse on your shoulder, alternate which shoulder you use.
  6. Driving. Posture is a factor in whether a collision will cause whiplash. Your headrest should be high enough and close enough to catch your head in a rear-end collision. Position the seat so you can sit up straight with your head no more than two to four inches in front of the headrest. Adjust the headrest so its upper edge is level with the top of your head: the back curve of your skull should meet the cushion of the headrest.
  7. Lifting. Improper lifting techniques put stress on the neck as well as the lower back. Bend your hips and knees instead of your back. Keep the object close to you while straightening your legs. When lifting something over your head, don’t tilt your neck backward. Strengthen your arms to make proper lifting easier.
  8. Watching TV. Sit far enough from a TV or movie screen that you can watch without tilting your head back. Don’t sit off to the side, forcing you to turn your neck for long periods. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Having Shoulder pain? I can Help

The treatment of shoulder pain depends entirely on the cause of the problem. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that you understand the cause of your symptoms before embarking on a treatment program. If you are unsure of your diagnosis, or the severity of your condition, you should seek medical advice before beginning any treatment.

Your chiropractor looks at your overall health, focusing not only on your shoulder, but also on your lifestyle, such as diet and amount of daily exercise. This integrated approach helps determine the best treatment for your shoulder pain. To help identify the cause of your problem, you and your chiropractor will discuss your symptoms and previous injuries, your family health history, and your lifestyle, including recreational and work related physical activities.

Your chiropractor is uniquely qualified to restore the health of your spine and neck. Special chiropractic techniques may relieve the pressure that is causing your shoulder pain. After locating the misaligned vertebrae in your neck, your chiropractor manually applies gentle pressure and repositions the vertebrae. These adjustments can help restore alignment, improve mobility, and relieve pain and stiffness.

Your chiropractor may recommend other types of treatment for relieving your shoulder pain. These may include moist heat, ice packs, massage, traction, or stretching and strengthening exercises

Friday, June 15, 2012

Things to remember when considering Laser Hair Removal

There are a few things to consider before getting laser treatments. One of the firsts is weather or not you are an ideal candidate.
One of the most important requirements is that the hair to be removed must be darker than the surrounding skin. The process usually does not work on people with blond or white hair.  Blonde and white hair contains a pigment called pheomelanin, which does not absorb laser energy as well as the pigment, called eumelanin, that is present in black or brown hair. Laser hair removal can be done on people with light skin, or dark skin.
Another thing to consider is the cost. Laser hair removal takes many sessions to have successful long-term results. Usually four sessions are recommended to begin with, and may cost from $500-$1500 a package.  The size of the area to be treated also affects the price. Large areas, like legs, cost more, while small areas, like upper lips, may be a bit less. The process of laser hair removal needs to be individualized for each patient.
Knowing who to get treatments from is important too. An inexperienced or unqualified person could end up doing more harm than good.  This is why we have brought Maria Byrne on staff.  She has been involved performing Laser therapy and skin treatments on a daily basis since 2004.  The expertise she brings, just adds to the professionalism you will find here at the Lakernick Health and Wellness Center.  639 E. Myrtle Ave., Feasterville-Trevose, PA 19053  215.355.8336  Call for a free consultation today

Thursday, June 14, 2012

  1. 1
    Skin care is all about maintaining hydration and getting whatever oils you naturally produce free flowing and not clogged. Oil is good for your skin! There is no use in 'drying it up.' When you dry up oil from your skin, you dry up the water too. Your skin will produce more oil and it won't be able to get out because of cellular build up of dehydrated sticky cells on the surface. Follow these instructions as best you can to create a healthy skin.
  2. 2
    If you are having issues with your skin seek out a well established and knowledgeable esthetician and dermatologist to find something right for you.
  3. 3
    Wash your hands properly. If you don't, the bacteria and oil from your fingers can get in your pores and create infection and breakouts.
  4. 4
    Remember people speaking endlessly about inner beauty? Dark leafy greens, richly coloured leafy greens like Broccoli, Spinach, drumstick leaves, are full of antioxidants that cleanse your skin from the inside.
  5. 5
    Cleanse your skin with an appropriate cleanser. Do not use soap. Soap has an alkaline pH and will strip your skin of its natural acidity leaving your skin vulnerable to bacteria and dehydrated. Most foaming cleansers will do this, especially Cetaphil because of its sodium lauryl sulfate content. Don't use anything that makes your skin feel tight after rinsing. Use warm water that is not too hot. Sudden temperature changes in the skin can permanently dilate capillaries. With your fingertips, rub cleanser on your skin in an upward circular motion. Rinse the cleanser with warm water and/or facial sponges.
  6. 6
    Use a toner after cleansing. Use an alcohol free, hydrating toner. Toner's purpose is to close the pores to prevent any infection or absorption of bacteria. You can either spray or wipe a toner. After cleansing, use a cotton pad to wipe toner over your skin to remove any cleanser residue. use a toner tonic or toner in a spray bottle and mist your skin. Use a tissue to blot your skin dry.
  7. 7
    Always use an appropriate moisturizer for your skin. Only if you are very oily or acne-prone is it necessary for you to use oil free moisturizers. Do not be afraid of oil! It is lubrication for your skin and protection against wrinkles. Use an SPF of at least 15 or 30 in your daytime moisturizer. Do not use an SPF at night. Night moisturizers are a good time to use something very nourishing or targeted to a specific skin issue.
  8. 8
    Exfoliate your skin 1 to 3 times a week. You can do this in several ways, but the most common is to use a scrub. Again, choose a gentle scrub (often creamy with rounded sloughing beads instead of jagged particles like nut shells etc) that does not leave your face feeling tight. On days when you exfoliate, you should do this after cleansing and follow with toning and moisturizing.
  9. 9
    If your skin is still very dry, look into using a serum after toner and before moisturizer and consult an esthetician or dermatologist for advice.
  10. 10
    If your skin is very oily and breaking out, you may need to have further tests done, so consult a dermatologist or esthetician for advice.
  11. 11
    Finally, everyone can use eye cream at any age. Most eye creams make great lip balms as well. Keep it beside your bed so you don't forget to use it.

10 tips for Perfect Health

1. Creative Visualisation - Think Positively

See your future...
Ten minutes of creative visualisation a day can open your mind to new possibilities, ones you never thought you would consider for yourself and your future.
Ten minutes of focusing on the positive and visualising the future each day can change the way you look at life.
10 Perfect Health Tips

2. Breath deep

It's so easy.
Ten deep breaths can improve your oxygen levels, increase circulation, lower anxiety levels and help you manage stressful situations.
Stop. Take Ten. Enjoy life.

3. A little walk goes a long way - count to 10...let's go!

A brisk 10 minute walk, three times a
day reduces the risk of diabetes and
osteoporosis, can lower your cholesterol level
and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Count to 10...let's go!

4. Go on - put your feet up!

You deserve to put your feet up.
Putting your feet up for 10 minutes gives tired and aching feet a well deserved rest and also improves circulation.
Your feet will thank you!

5. Stretch yourself every day!

Spread your wings! (Or at least stretch a little.)

Ten minutes of stretching
twice a day can lower stress levels, help lower blood pressure and improve digestive and blood circulation.

Proper stretching before exercise reduces the risk
of injury and makes hard working muscles feel great.

6. Eat your Fruits & Veg

Produce the Produce!
Everyone knows that 5-10 fruits and vegetables a day are part of a healthy diet but sometimes it’s hard to work them all in. So mix it up a little! Break out the blender and have a fruit smoothie for breakfast. Or try something new!
Ask your grocer for a recommendation. Most stores will order in new and exotic fruits and vegetables if they know there is a market.

7. Funny is good for you!

Laugh it up!
It’s true – Laughter is good for you. It increases blood flow, relaxes the body and lessens stress levels. Don’t take life so seriously - a good belly laugh also helps digestion, helps lower blood pressure and releases natural pain killing endorphins that make you feel great and help to boost your immune system.
What an easy way to make yourself more healthy!

8. Reduce your stress: The glass is a) half full and rising, b) being filled to the top, c) for me!

Reduce your stress levels. Easier said than done, right? Start by trying to get enough sleep and regular exercise.
Count to ten before reacting to something that aggravates you. Recognize the stressful situations in your life and think about how you can improve how you feel about them.
There is a definite connection between healthy living and having a positive outlook on life.
Try making a list of ten things you are thankful for - just doing this daily can make a big difference in your everyday attitude and help manage stress.

9. Don't forget your brain!

Don’t forget your brain!

Your brain needs exercise too. Giving your mind a workout is an important part of healthy living.

Learn something new. Read about something you are interested in or do a puzzle. Or check your local community centre for book groups, classes and lectures – who knows? You may find a new passion or a hobby that’s right for you.
Get that brain moving!

10. Get moving - your body will thank you!

It's so simple... get off the couch!

Take the stairs. Go for a walk with someone you love. Try walking or cycling instead of driving. Learn a new sport. Go dancing! Make a deal with a friend to exercise together. Regular physical activity improves your health, reduces feelings of depression, lowers risk of disease, helps manage weight and improves your self-esteem.

What’s not to like? Get Moving!
Your body will thank you!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The best healthy snack recipe

Boldly flavored ingredients like briny olives, cured meats and smoky cheeses are perfect when you're jonesing for some salt -- and a little goes a long way.

1. Cheesy Kale Chips: Tear kale leaves into large pieces and arrange on a baking sheet. Spritz with olive oil and bake in a 350° oven until crisp. While still warm, sprinkle with grated parmesan.
2. Tamari-seasoned rice crackers are a salt lover's vehicle for tuna salad. We like to punch it up with a squeeze of sriracha chili sauce!
3. Mound chopped smoked salmon onto lettuce leaves and top with dill.
4. Sprinkle drained canned artichoke hearts with lemon zest, capers, chopped fresh basil and olive oil. Eat with toothpicks, as if you were in Italy.
5. Crumble feta cheese over cold watermelon cubes; sprinkle with slivered fresh mint.
6. Munch on dried nori (seaweed) strips -- they're surprisingly addictive!
7. Stuffed Mushrooms: Briefly microwave button mushroom caps until softened. Fill with jarred pesto and a little chopped ham.
8. Smoked Turkey Pinwheels: Spread a layer of softened cream cheese on sliced smoked turkey breast and top with thinly sliced tomato. Roll up and cut into 1-inch pieces.
9. You know what's delicious on baked potato chips? Chopped hard-boiled egg seasoned with lemon, parsley and anchovies (trust us!).
10. Spruce up a shot of tomato juice by topping it with finely chopped cooked shrimp, scallions and crumbled saltines.
11. Pile smoked gouda slices and dried cherries on a whole wheat tortilla and microwave until hot and melty.
12. Whisk together peanut butter, tamari and a few drops of water. Use as an Asian-style dip for baby bok choy.
13. Mini Mock Reubens: Turn pub food into a power snack. Spread mustard on thin slices of pumpernickel cocktail bread, heap with sauerkraut and sprinkle with pickle relish and a small amount of shredded swiss. Pop them under the broiler.
14. Five-Spice Pumpkin Seeds: Toss salted pumpkin seeds (also known as pepitas) with sesame oil and chinese five-spice powder, then bake at 350° until crisp.
15. Turn cucumber slices into crackers: Spread them with olive tapenade and garnish with chopped fresh tarragon.
16. Whole wheat pretzels are always delicious, but they're flat-out irresistible when slathered with spicy mustard spiked with ancho chile powder and sea salt.
17. Buffalo Popcorn: Toss air-popped popcorn with olive oil, a little hot sauce and a handful of crumbled blue cheese to season.
18. Combine a little butter with a lot of chopped chives and dill. Spread on rye crackers and top with sliced red radishes and sea salt.
19. Inside-Out Hot Dog: Wrap a dill pickle spear in a paper-thin slice of ham and dip in ballpark mustard.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


If you’re tired all the time, a change in what you eat (diet) or what you do all day (activity pattern) may be all you need to turn things around 180°.
You won’t be able to do everything on this list all the time — you’d tire yourself out trying to get more energy — but do try them all to see which ones work for you and your schedule. Add a few of these tips to your regular routine. Or mix them up to keep things interesting.
1. Change your socks for refreshment.
It’s an amazing trick. Bring a change of socks to work, and change your socks midway through the day (say, after lunch). You’ll be amazed at how much fresher you’ll feel. This trick is especially handy on days with lots of walking — like during a hike or family outing to the amusement park.
2. Rock out loud.
Whether you work alone or in a room with coworkers, a quick one-song rock out loud session is an effective way to beat back exhaustion.
In a cube farm? Get everyone to sing along! The key is to choose a song that everyone can sing along with. (I like Kokomo.) The energy boosting effect comes from bobbing your head and singing out loud. One song, 3 minutes. That’s a quick boost of adrenaline that lasts for a bit. You’ll be singing to yourself the rest of the never ending project delivery night.
3. Get rid of the stuffy nose.
If allergies have your sinuses blocked, you may be feeling more tired and cranky. An over-the-counter allergy medication should clear up your sinuses (and your mind).
4. Work with your body’s clock.
There is a natural ebb and flow of energy throughout the day. We start off sluggish after waking up, even after a solid 8 hours of sleep. Our energy peaks mid-morning, and it’s natural to want a siesta in the afternoon. We get a second spike of energy in the early evening, followed by our lowest energy point just before bedtime. Once you understand this natural rhythm of energy throughout the day, you can work on the important tasks during your peak hours and avoid early afternoon snoozefests (meetings).
5. Have a piece of chocolate.
Not too much, but if you’re going to have some candy, it might as well be chocolate. We get an endorphin buzz from chocolate (not to mention the energy boost from the slight bit of caffeine chocolate contains). Dark chocolate has more caffeine than milk chocolate.
An afternoon snack of yogurt, berries, and nuts will provide the boost of energy to carry you through the day.  Photo by lepiaf.geo / Flickr)
An afternoon snack of yogurt, berries, and nuts will provide the boost of energy to carry you through the day. Photo by lepiaf.geo / Flickr
6. Have an afternoon power snack.
A small healthy snack that is low in sugar and has protein and/or fiber a couple hours after lunch helps you finish off the day strong. Some suggestions:
  • mixed nuts
  • nonfat yogurt
  • apple and peanut butter
  • frozen berrie smoothie
  • trail mix
  • granola bar
7. Hit up the water cooler for inconsequential banter.
A little midday gossip and random banter is a great pick-me-up for your tired mind. It works because it gets your mind on zero-stress thoughts for a while. The mental break for just a few minutes will revitalize you.
8. Eat lots of berries.
Especially berries that are blue, red, or purple. The color comes from anthocyanins, a powerful antioxidant, that boosts energy. Any kind of berry will contain tons.
All types of berries help fight fatigue and are delicious to boot! Photo by Zabowski / Flickr
All types of berries help fight fatigue and are delicious to boot! Photo by Zabowski / Flickr
9. Wear brighter colors.
This trick is related to the mood you project to people, and the reciprocating mood they project towards you. If you wear dark, somber colors, you project a dark, somber attitude, and people will respond to you with a somber attitude. If you wear bright, happy colors, you’ll get that attitude projected towards you, which will boost your own mood and energy levels.
10. Take a power nap.
But do it in your chair. Don’t lie down on the sofa or you won’t get back up. Keep it short: 5-10 minutes max. Any longer and it will have the opposite effect of knocking you out for the rest of the day.
11. Flirt.
It’s fun, it’s harmless (keep it innocent), and it’s effective. Nothing quite gets the heart pumping like a little flirting.
Amore gets the blood flowing.
Amore gets the blood flowing. Flirt for more energy. Photo by Kjunstorm / Flickr
12. Aromatherapy with lavender.
Research has shown that the lavender scent increases alertness. Test subjects were given math tests before and after 3 minutes of lavender aromatherapy. The group completed the tests faster and more accurately after aromatherapy.
13. Wake up at the same time everyday.
Including weekends. This sets your body clock. Otherwise, you’ll be wide awake when you should be asleep. Or worse, asleep when you should be awake (dozing off in a meeting is embarrassing). The key is to go to bed at the same time every night. If you need to reset your sleep cycle in one day, stop eating for the 16 hours before the time you want to wake up.
14. Drink lots of water.
Dehydration is a sinister cause of fatigue because it slowly creeps up on you. If you consistently drink less than 8 cups of water a day, you may be sluggish all the time. Get a 32 oz (1 quart, 4 cups) water bottle. Your goal is to polish off 2 of those a day. Try it for a week and see if your general energy level increases.
15. Use caffeine wisely.
Coffee and caffeinated sodas can boost your alertness, but be careful about letting it be a habitual crutch. The temptation to drink more caffeine to get even more energy will be strong. Eventually you’ll be downing 5 double-shot espressos a day just to function. Drink coffee earlier in the day to avoid insomnia, which will make the next day worse.
Coffee in moderation. Caffeine can give you a quick boost of energy, but can also be a counterproductive crutch.
Use caffeine in moderation. Coffee provides a shot of energy, but can also become a counterproductive dependence. Photo by visualpanic / Flickr
16. Avoid energy drinks.
Energy drinks provide a near-instant hyperactivity boost, but they always result in a crash. Energy drinks are like energy credit cards — you’re spending future energy to get short-term energy. The resulting energy deficit gets worse until you hit energy bankruptcy.
17. Eat low glycemic (low or complex carb) foods.
Trade in good, complex carbohydrates (low glycemic index) for the bad, simple carbs (sugar). Carbohydrates with a high glycemic index means the sugar is more easily digested by your body. That results in a spike in energy followed by a low-sugar crash.
High glycemic index foods to avoid include white bread, potato, and high sugar foods (like sodas). Low glycemic foods (the good carb foods) include fruits and vegetables, grains (eg., whole wheat bread), low-carb foods (eg., meats), and pasta. Check this chart of foods and their glycemic index before your next trip to the grocery store.
18. Eat more soluble fiber.
Soluble fiber is the kind that slows down the rate of absorption of sugars. It evens out your energy levels by preventing a sugar high and crash. (By the way, insoluble fiber is the kind that prevents constipation.) Don’t worry too much about which kind of fiber you’re getting — they’re both good for you. Rotate more high soluble fiber foods like nuts, grains, fruits, plant matter (vegetables), beans, and oats into your diet.
Eat and sniff more citrus fruits for an energy boost.  Photo by Steven Fernandez / Flickr
Eat and sniff more citrus fruits for an energy boost. Photo by Steven Fernandez / Flickr
19. Get your Vitamin C.
Get a daily dose of citrus fruits (eg., orange juice in the morning) or a vitamin C tablet. Study after study shows the correlation between citric acid deficiency and chronic fatigue. Vitamin C also helps you absorb more nutrients from food.
20. Sniff some citrus.
In addition to the Vitamin C, citrus scents (like orange, lemon and lime) stimulate alertness. So lather on some of that lemon scented lotion.
21. Cover the B Vitamins.
B vitamins cover a range of bodily functions, but most B vitamins are involved in the process of converting blood sugar into usable energy. To ensure you get the proper amount of B vitamins, eat a balanced diet.

Friday, June 8, 2012

A little inspiration for today

Many people think of excitement as happiness. They are thinking of something, or expecting something that they consider to be happiness, and for them, that is already happiness. But when you are excited you are not peaceful. True happiness is based on peace.
"The Art of Power"
There is a Vietnamese proverb, "Tri tuc, tien tuc, dai tuc, ha thoi tuc." That means, settling for "good enough" is enough. If we wait until all our needs and wants are met, we may wait forever. "Tri tuc" means "good enough." "Good enough" means being content with the minimum amount necessary. Your shirt and pair of shoes can last another year. It's all right for three or four people to share a desk for studying, there's no need for each to have her own desk. Settling for "good enough" in terms of simple living will bring us contentment, satisfaction, and happiness immediately. As long as we think our lives are not good enough [materially], we will not have happiness. As soon as we realize our lives are good enough, happiness immediately appears. That is the practice of contentment.
In Vietnam there's a school of Buddhism called the Four Gratitudes. Just by practicing gratitude, we can find happiness. We must be grateful to our ancestors, our parents, our teachers, our friends, the Earth, the sky, the trees, the grass, the animals, the soil, the stones. Looking at the sunlight or at the forest, we feel gratitude. Looking at our breakfast, we feel grattitude. When we live in the spirit of gratitude, there will be much happiness in our life. The one who is grateful is the one who has much happiness while the one who is ungrateful will not be able to have happiness.
Two Treasures: Buddhist Teachings on Awakening & True Happiness

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Keys to Healthy Eating

Developing healthy eating habits isn’t as confusing or as restrictive as many people imagine. The first principle of a healthy diet is simply to eat a wide variety of foods. This is important because different foods make different nutritional contributions.
Secondly, fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes—foods high in complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, low in fat, and free of cholesterol—should make up the bulk of the calories you consume. The rest should come from low-fat dairy products, lean meat and poultry, and fish.
You should also try to maintain a balance between calorie intake and calorie expenditure—that is, don’t eat more food than your body can utilize. Otherwise, you will gain weight. The more active you are, therefore, the more you can eat and still maintain this balance.
Following these three basic steps doesn’t mean that you have to give up your favorite foods. As long as your overall diet is balanced and rich in nutrients and fiber, there is nothing wrong with an occasional cheeseburger. Just be sure to limit how frequently you eat such foods, and try to eat small portions of them.
You can also view healthy eating as an opportunity to expand your range of choices by trying foods—especially vegetables, whole grains, or fruits—that you don’t normally eat. A healthy diet doesn’t have to mean eating foods that are bland or unappealing.
The following basic guidelines are what you need to know to construct a healthy diet.
1 Eat plenty of high-fiber foods—that is, fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains. These are the “good” carbohydrates—nutritious, filling, and relatively low in calories. They should supply the 20 to 30 grams of dietary fiber you need each day, which slows the absorption of carbohydrates, so there’s less effect on insulin and blood sugar, and provides other health benefits as well. Such foods also provide important vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals (plant chemicals essential to good health).
2 Make sure to include green, orange, and yellow fruits and vegetables—such as broccoli, carrots, cantaloupe, and citrus fruits. The antioxidants and other nutrients in these foods may help protect against developing certain types of cancer and other diseases. Eat five or more servings a day.
3 Limit your intake of sugary foods, refined-grain products such as white bread, and salty snack foods. Sugar, our No.1 additive, is added to a vast array of foods. Just one daily 12-ounce can of soda (160 calories) can add up to 16 pounds over the course of a year. Many sugary foods are also high in fat, so they’re calorie-dense.
4 Cut down on animal fat. It’s rich in saturated fat, which boosts blood cholesterol levels and has other adverse health effects. Choose lean meats, skinless poultry, and nonfat or low-fat or nonfat dairy products.
5 Cut way down on trans fats, supplied by hydrogenated vegetable oils used in most processed foods in the supermarket and in many fast foods.
6 Eat more fish and nuts, which contain healthy unsaturated fats. Substitute olive or canola oil for butter or stick margarine.
7 Keep portions moderate, especially of high-calorie foods. In recent years serving sizes have ballooned, particularly in restaurants. Choose a starter instead of an entrée, split a dish with a friend, and don’t order supersized anything.
8 Keep your cholesterol intake below 300 milligrams per day. Cholesterol is found only in animal products, such as meats, poultry, dairy products, and egg yolks.
9 Eat a variety of foods. Don’t try to fill your nutrient requirements by eating the same foods day in, day out. It is possible that not every essential nutrient has been identified, and so eating a wide assortment of foods helps to ensure that you will get all the necessary nutrients. In addition, this will limit your exposure to any pesticides or toxic substances that may be present in one particular food.
10 Maintain an adequate calcium intake. Calcium is essential for strong bones and teeth. Get your calcium from low-fat sources, such as skim milk and low-fat yogurt. If you can’t get the optimal amount from foods, take supplements.
11 Try to get your vitamins and minerals from foods, not from supplements. Supplements cannot substitute for a healthy diet, which supplies nutrients and other compounds besides vitamins and minerals. Foods also provide the “synergy” that many nutrients require to be efficiently used in the body.
12 Maintain a desirable weight. Balance energy (calorie) intake with energy output. Exercise and other physical activity are essential.
13 If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation. That is one drink a day for women, two a day for men. A drink is defined as 12 ounces of beer, 4 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof spirits. Excess alcohol consumption leads to a variety of health problems. And alcoholic beverages can add many calories to your diet without supplying nutrients.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Health Lasagna

In the Jim Davis comic strip, Garfield the cat calls lasagna “the world’s most perfect food.” But this week, Martha Rose Shulman has improved on perfection, offering a delicious array of lasagna recipes made with various roasted vegetables. The result is a lighter but still luxurious vegetarian lasagna that is just right for summer dining. She writes:
Roasting brings a rich dimension to all sorts of vegetables. I’d never thought of roasting broccoli, for instance, but now I’ll be roasting that vegetable as often as I steam it, for sure.
I had something very specific in mind for my roasted vegetables. I thought they’d make a great layer in a vegetarian lasagna, and I was right. You may think of lasagna as a rich, heavy dish, but it needn’t be. There’s no need to compensate for the absence of a traditional Bolognese sauce by packing these casseroles with pounds of ricotta and grated cheese. Some of each of those elements is welcome, but I cut the usual amounts by half in this week’s recipes, and they’re plenty satisfying.
You can get ahead on lasagna by making up big batches of marinara sauce and freezing it, or in a pinch use a good commercial brand. The noodles are no-boil, which really makes these lasagnas easy to assemble. They make great one-dish meals, and I think they’re very kid-friendly. They can be made ahead and reheated (I’m pulling the leftovers of this week’s recipe tests out of my refrigerator and feeding them to a group of hungry teenagers after a school concert tonight), or frozen.
Here are five new vegetarian lasagna dishes made with roasted summer vegetables.
Lasagna With Steamed Spinach and Roasted Zucchini: Roasting the zucchini adds a welcome layer of flavor.
Lasagna With Roasted Eggplant, Mushrooms and Carrots: Loaded with vegetables, this satisfying dish is full of textures and flavors.
Lasagna With Roasted Beets and Herb Béchamel: This delicate lasagna turns pink as the beets mingle with the white sauce.
Lasagna With Spicy Roasted Cauliflower: Be warned: You may find it hard not to eat the zesty browned cauliflower before you get this lasagna built.
Lasagna With Roasted Broccoli: Slices of broccoli are browned in the oven before taking their place in this savory one-dish meal.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Stress Reduction

I will tell you how to give a basic 'stress reduction' treatment that you can make you own, and change any way that you wish.  If you have a professional massage table, you'll have the client facing down, with their head in the face cradle.  You'll want to drape them from the lower back downward, with their feet on a long thin pillow to take the pressure off of their knees and lower back.  Always consider the temperature that your client is feeling.  Because they have more skin exposed, and they are lying still, they will have a tendency to be cooler than you will be.  So don't hesitate to use blankets when needed.
     Heat up your oil by either gently rubbing in between your palms, or heat slightly in a bottle warmer.  Stand at the top end of the table, facing your client.  Starting at the top of the back, massage the oil around the back to evenly distribute the oil.  This takes practice.  The idea is to lend a feeling of confidence to your client through your touch.  Make your movements solid... yet fluid, firm... yet caring.   If you have soft music playing, use the tempo to add harmony to the experience.  Which doesn't mean that you necessarily have to massage to the beat.  Just tie it into the movements, to add another dimension.  This is just another part of the rich non-verbal communication that takes place in a good massage treatment.
     Once the oil is distributed, start at the top of the neck and gently run your thumbs down the spine to the lower back.  Feel as you go, and be careful not to push too hard.  This area is tender at the beginning of the treatment, and if you're not careful, you'll lose the client's trust, and they will not be as apt to relax.   While still at the base of the spine, run both palms up the middle of both sides of the back, then out onto the arms on both sides at the same time, and then bring them back together in the middle, ending at the base of the scull.  Repeat this process a couple more times.  Now, after moving your position to the side of your client, cup your hands and do a slow, rhythmic drumming motion up and down the spine, across the shoulder area, and down the arms and back.  Next you can focus in between the shoulder blades, using gentle kneading motions with your thumbs, and alternating the two hands in a kneading motion in various areas.  Gently do circular motions with your thumbs up the soft tissue that surrounds each vertebra, beginning at the lower portion of the back.  Keep your motions fluid, and never remove your hands from your client.  Even if you need more massage oil, keep one hand remaining on the client at all times.  Glide your hands up to the top of the vertebra and move your own position to the other side of your client, and repeat the smooth, kneading motions that you just did on the other side.
     It's so important to invest yourself in what the client is feeling.  The more massage that you've had yourself the better.  The more able you are to 'feel' what you are doing, the better.  In other words, the more ability you have to put yourself in your client's place, the better treatment you'll be able to give.  You'll eventually come up with your own series of movements on the back, neck and shoulder area.  Since every body is different, you'll find that every massage will be slightly different, no matter how much you like to stick to a regular series of movements.
       To complete the back segment, position yourself at the top of the client again (like when you began), and do the same movement that you started with (the thumb to lower back, palms up to top of shoulder area, down the shoulders and back to the center).  Do this 3 times, very slowly.  End the segment with your hands going up the sides of the head, make a couple of slow circles, and gently grasp the hair and run your fingers gently through and out.  If you do it correctly, the client will not even be sure when you've let go of their hair.
     Remove the excess oil on the back in a way that feels great, and says to the client physically "We are finishing this part of the treatment, soon it's time to wind into the next".  Place a towel that has been soaking in warm water and the scent of your choice (Eucalyptus or Lavender would be nice choices).  Lay it down the spine and gently press with your hands (this feels really good).  Let it sit for about a half a minute, and wipe off the excess oil in firm, yet gently strokes.  Put a nice soft dry towel over the same area to collect any excess water and gently press.  Gently put one hand at the base of the neck, and the other at the base of the spine and hold for about a minute.  If you've done everything correctly, you should feel a gentle flowing current going down the spine and the client's breathing will be slow and relaxed.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Why See a Chiropractor?

Visiting a chiropractor can help you deal with a number of conditions. In some cases, a visit to the chiropractor can take away the need for painkillers or at least reduce it. According to Chirobase, an online guide to the history, theories and practices of chiropractics, a number of randomized controlled trial, or RCT, have shown the many benefits for those with spinal issues.

Back Pain

According to Chirobase, a number of RCT have shown that patients who use chiropractic care to treat lower back pain have a 34 percent higher improvement in recovery over those who use other methods. Results are mixed on whether the outcomes are better when chiropractor visits are used alone or combined with exercise therapy or medication. Not enough data is available, however, on whether chiropractic care is effective in treating chronic low back pain or sciatica.

Neck Pain

Neck pain is second only to lower back pain as a reason for visiting a chiropractor, reports Chirobase. Fewer studies have been conducted on the efficacy of manipulation and mobilization to treat neck pain. A 1996 study published in the British Medical Journal showed that people who were treated by a chiropractor showed more improvement than those who used a different type of therapy. Headaches that are related to tension or neck pain also can be helped with chiropractic care. According to Arn Strasser, a chiropractor and writer for Spine Universe, chiropractors can treat a number of conditions associated with neck pain, including joint injuries and strained muscles, but they will refer more serious problems, such as fractures, to the appropriate doctor.

Non-Musculoskeletal Conditions

According to Chirobase, chiropractic care has been used to treat a number of conditions not connected to the musculoskeletal systems. This includes hypertension, dizziness/vertigo and chronic pelvic pain. Results are mixed. The University of Maryland Medical Center points out that the following conditions are often treated through chiropractic care: digestive problems, fatigue, premenstrual pain and asthma.