Tag Archives: healthy eating

Sports Drinks

Hydration & Supplements: Sports Drinks vs. Energy Drinks

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hydration, energy drinks, sports drinks, chocolate milk, muscle, cramps, electrolytes, nutrients, supplements, nutrition, water, hydrated

It’s important to stay hydrated during physical activity. While water is still the best choice for hydration, other acceptable options are available. Do you know what is most effective for your workout?

Sports Drinks
Sports drinks are ideal for athletes looking to hydrate and replenish after long, intensive exercise (usually greater than 60 minutes). Sports drinks contain a combination of electrolytes, carbs, minerals, and vitamins. This combination of nutrients serve to restore lost fluid and sodium levels. Additionally, the sugary carbs found in sport drinks provide athletes a boost of natural energy to aid in recovery.

hydration, energy drinks, sports drinks, chocolate milk, muscle, cramps, electrolytes, nutrients, supplements, nutrition, water, hydrated

Energy Drinks
Energy drinks are never a good option for athletes. While these beverages do provide an apparent energy boost, the effects are temporary. Energy drinks contain few helpful macronutrients, like carbs, and instead use the stimulant caffeine to create an artificial boost of energy. These high concentrations of caffeine can act as a diuretic thus increasing dehydration risks. Too much caffeine can also cause jitters, dizziness and headaches leading to decreased performance. High doses of caffeine have been linked to cardiac emergencies.

Chocolate Milk?
Effectively recover with chocolate milk. Low-fat chocolate milk makes a simple yet effective post-workout snack. Offering just the right mix of carbs and protein, this tasty drink refuels your body and helps muscles through recovery. Drink up!

Out Smart Muscle Cramps:
Painful muscle cramps can quickly sideline an athlete. While the root cause is still being researched, dehydration, muscle imbalances and improper warm-up are likely factors. Follow these basics to help prevent muscle cramps:

  • Stay hydrated, make sure your athlete does not start the practice/game dehydrated.
  • Pack a refillable water bottle to drink throughout the day.
  • Consume a balanced diet with healthy amounts of sodium.
  • Bolster weak muscle groups with functional, plyometric and strength training.
  • Practice foam rolling and static stretching in tight areas.
  • Incorporate a dynamic warmup.

Written by the Therapy Team at the Center for Physical Rehabilitation – Grand Rapids, Michigan.
To learn more about the Center for Physical Rehabilitation click here.

Exercise Diabetes

Role of Exercise in Type 2 Diabetes

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Role of Exercise in Type 2 Diabetes, Healthy Eating

Lifestyle changes play an important role in managing type 2 diabetes. Activity decreases blood glucose and regular exercise helps by improving the way your body uses glucose.It can also reduce the risk of diabetes complications like heart disease.

How it Works
Glucose is a type of sugar that is used for energy. It is present in the blood and stored in the muscle and liver. A hormone called insulin helps most of the glucose move from the blood into cells. For those with type 2 diabetes, the body is resistant to insulin and over time the body has trouble making insulin at all. As a result, glucose has trouble getting to the cells, the body doesn’t get enough energy, and glucose builds up in the blood.

During exercise your working muscles have a greater need for energy and therefore glucose. As a result, glucose can enter the muscles and cells with far less insulin. This leads to a drop in blood glucose levels during exercise and for a few hours after while the muscles recover. This causes an immediate though temporary decrease in blood glucose.

Over time, regular activity can make the body less insulin resistant during activity or rest. This can lead to more long term benefits and may lead to a decrease in the need for medication.

In addition to helping control diabetes, exercise can also improve your overall health by decreasing weight, the risk of cardiovascular disease, and blood vessel damage.

Role of Exercise in Type 2 Diabetes, Healthy Eating

Exercise Recommendations
It is important that you talk to a doctor before starting an exercise program. You and your doctor can work together to choose an exercise program that is right for you.

For greatest benefits, you will need to do both aerobic exercises and strength training. Aerobic exercises include things like walking, bicycling, and swimming. Strength training exercises and classes use things like weight machines, free weights, and resistance bands. Adults should aim for:

  • At least 150 minutes per week of moderate-to-vigorous intensity aerobic exercise
  • 2-3 days of strength training per week
  • Try not to go more than 2 days without some type of activity

Look for opportunities during the day to add to your overall activity level. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, take a short walk during the day, or walk instead of taking the car. Even 10 minutes of activity can provide some immediate benefits.

Safety Steps
Certain diabetes medication can lead to a dip in blood glucose called hypoglycemia. Talk to your doctor to understand if this may be a problem for you. Be aware of signs of hypoglycemia during exercise such as dizziness, shaking, or confusion. If you have these symptoms, stop exercising and manage hypoglycemia. Let your doctor know about any episodes, since your medication may need to be adjusted.

Diabetes can also affect the nerves and blood flow to the feet. Inspect your feet frequently, since diabetes can sometimes lessen your ability to feel pain from a foot injury.

Keep in mind that exercise is only one piece of an overall diabetes management plan. You will also need to control your blood glucose levels with good nutrition.

by Cynthia M. Johnson, MA

RESOURCES:
American Diabetes Association
http://www.diabetes.org

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
http://www.cdc.gov

CANADIAN RESOURCES:
Health Canada
http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca

Public Health Agency of Canada
http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca

REFERENCES:

Physical activity for type 2 diabetes. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T270048/Physical-activity-for-type-2-diabetes. Accessed February 20, 2017.

Physical activity is important. American Diabetes Association website. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/fitness/physical-activity-is-important.html. Updated December 27, 2016. Accessed February 20, 2017.

What we recommend. American Diabetes Association website. Available at: http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/fitness/types-of-activity/what-we-recommend.html. Updated May 19, 2015. Accessed February 20, 2017.

Last reviewed December 2017 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Michael Woods, MD, FAAP  Last Updated: 12/22/2017

EBSCO Information Services is fully accredited by URAC. URAC is an independent, nonprofit health care accrediting organization dedicated to promoting health care quality through accreditation, certification and commendation.

shin splints

PT News

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This Month in PT News. Featuring articles from PTandMe partnering clinics!

flu

1. Resuming Exercise After the Flu Bug
Written by the Therapy Team at the Jackson Clinics – Northern Virginia

Flu season is in full swing, and along with the regular flu, the new H1N1 virus is infecting thousands of people. Influenza can be a serious illness. Symptoms include fever, chills, headache, body aches, sore throat , runny nose, dry cough and a general feeling of exhaustion and sickness. Read more

New Year Resolution

2. The New Way to Resolve
Written by Allison Whitteberry, PTA at the Center for Physical Rehabilitation – Cascade

According to Statistic Brain, 41% of Americans usually make New Year resolutions. However, after six months, less then half of those American’s have maintained their resolutions. Read more

Shin Splints

3. What You Need to Know About Shin Splints
Written by the Therapy Team at Momentum Physical Therapy – San Antonio, Texas

Shin splints is one of those old health terms that pop up from time to time, like “lumbago.” Lumbago refers to low back pain, which actually can be caused by different things. Read more

Lymphedema

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Lymphedema?

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Lymphedema

Lymphedema can occur in any body part. Some common early symptoms include:

  • Tightness, swelling or thickening anywhere in the extremity. Initially the swelling may fluctuate but over timeit worsens.
  • A burning sensation or tingling sensation radiating down the extremity.
  • Complaints of heaviness or aching of the extremity.
  • Inability to wear rings, jewelry, watches or clothing secondary to edema.

STAGE 1 – Reversible Lymphedema

  • Lymphedema disappears with bed rest and/or elevation especially over night.
  • Edema is soft and pitting, no resistance is felt. Indentations are easily made.
  • No or little fibrosis. No alteration of tissues.

STAGE 2 – Irreversible Edema

  • Protein enriched edema which does not decrease with elevation/nights rest.
  • Connective and scar tissue formation (i.e. fibrosis). Fibrosclerotic changes.
  • Non pitting edema, strong pressure is able to produce pitting.
  • Edema becomes hard. Indentions are difficult to make.

lymphedema

Precautions and Guidelines

  • Maintain a well balanced diet, with low sodium intake. Keep a healthy weight, avoid obesity. Good nutritional guidelines are provided by the American Heart Association and the American Cancer Society.
  • Keep the affected arm or leg, clean, and well moisturized. Lotion should be at a relatively low pH balance. The goal is to prevent skin breakdown.
  • Use antibacterial and hypo-allergenic soap when washing.
  • Avoid injections, vaccinations, flu shots, blood draws and IV lines in the affected extremity. Remember, if this is an emergency, it is more important to treat the patient than to worry about putting an IV in the affected arm.
  • If at all possible, avoid having blood pressure taken in the affected arm.
  • Many people enjoy having a manicure. There is always a risk with this but you can decrease your risk by keeping your cuticles moist with lotion and push them back instead of cutting them. You could also consider buying your own manicure set and have the salon use only your tools.
  • When cleaning the house, wear a good quality rubber glove when handling harsh chemicals such as ammonia, bleach, furniture polish, abrasive cleansers etc.
  • Avoid using a razor or depilatory creams for the armpit or leg hair. The safest tool would be an electric razor.
  • When cooking, wear long protective mitts (to the elbow) when taking food out of the oven and when boiling a pot of hot water.
  • It is important to avoid pet scratches, insect bites, spider bites etc. Using an insect repellent may be necessary but remember some brands are very harsh. Look for a natural insect repellent if possible.
  • Avoid sunburn at all cost! Especially if you have received radiation therapy.
  • Be aware of items that can cause a burn such as a curling iron, an iron, space heaters etc.
  • Avoid saunas, hot tubs, and hot showers. Avoid extreme temperatures, very cold or very hot.
  • Avoid lifting or moving heavy objects.
  • Avoid tight fitting clothing or jewelry.
  • Exercise, and be knowledgeable of how exercise effects the lymphedema.
  • Check your skin daily, and call your physician immediately if you notice any adverse changes in your lymphedematous body part or if you have fever and redness.

 

Additional Precautions for Leg Lymphedema

  • Proper shoe wear is essential in avoiding blisters and ingrown toenails, avoid high-heeled shoes.
  • Do not walk bare foot, especially outside.
  • Get all fungal infections treated immediately.
  • Do not receive injections to remove varicose veins in the affected leg.

This information is for educational purposes only. This information should not be used without consultation with your healthcare professional. If you have questions regarding the material or its application, seek professional assistance from your provider. This information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace healthcare professional consultation.

 

childhood obesity

Treating Childhood Obesity With Activity

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When talk focuses on childhood obesity in the United States, words like “critical” and “epidemic” are often used. The tried-and-true prescription of more exercise and better nutrition still holds true, but overweight children face unique challenges when it comes to weight loss.

Why Has Childhood Obesity Increased and What Are the Effects?
The statistics are disturbing. Not only are the overall obesity rates increasing, the heaviest kids are heavier than they were 30 years ago. Why is this happening? Experts who have studied childhood obesity attribute it to a change in lifestyle. The active lifestyle of the past—walking to school, playing outside, and engaging in after-school activities—has been replaced by a sedentary lifestyle of watching TV, playing video games, and using electronic devices like phones, computers, and tablets. Eating habits have changed noticeably, with convenience foods that are higher in fat and calories replacing fruits and vegetables.

The consequences of obesity are significant. A child who is obese may develop high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and type 2 diabetes. These conditions can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease such as a heart attack and stroke. In addition, older teens who are obese may have an increased risk of death during adulthood.

Obesity can also affect emotional health. A child who is obese may have emotional problems in school, and struggle with low self-esteem and depression.

What Is One of the Best Solutions?
Exercise is one of the main tools to fight childhood obesity. The US Department of Health and Human Services encourages children of all ages to be physically active. If your child is overweight, obese, or even of normal weight, recommendations to improve your child’s health include:

  • Encouraging your young child (aged 1-4 years old) to actively play daily in a safe environment
  • Encouraging your older child (aged 5 years and up) to participate in moderate to vigorous activity every day—Your child should aim for at least one hour per day of moderate to vigorous activity. At least 3 days out of the week should be vigorous activity.

Since children often engage in shorter bursts of activity throughout the day, it is okay to count these times as exercise.

Examples of different types of physical activity include:

Moderate-intensity: Brisk walking, hiking, skateboarding, baseball, rollerblading, and bike riding
Vigorous-intensity: Jumping rope, running, and playing sports like basketball, hockey or tennis

The main difference between moderate- and vigorous-intensity exercises is the demand on the body. Vigorous activities force the body to work harder. The heart beats faster and breathing becomes more rapid, but energy is used up faster.

  • Rollerblading
  • Learning karate
  • Playing organized sports (field hockey, soccer, football)
  • Swimming
  • Gymnastics
  • Strength training with weights
  • Rock climbing
  • Cross-country skiing

Before your child jumps into a new fitness routine, it is important that you work with your child’s doctor. Being obese can put a strain on muscles and bones, possibly causing back pain and foot or ankle problems. The doctor can assess your child’s overall health and recommend safe exercises.

What Else Can Be Done to Encourage Activity?
Another important piece to the puzzle is to focus on screen time. Screen time refers to how many hours per day your child spends in front of a screen—whether it be watching TV, playing video games, or using electronic devices. These are sedentary activities that contribute to obesity. The NHLBI recommends that screen time should be limited to less than 2 hours per day, which leaves more time for exercise. You can further encourage your child to be active by planning family outings, like going on a hike, riding bikes, or playing flag football. That way, the whole family can become healthier together.

by Patricia Kellicker, BSN and Rebecca J. Stahl, MA

RESOURCES:
American Council on Exercise
http://www.acefitness.org

Shape Up America
http://www.shapeupus.org

CANADIAN RESOURCES:
Health Canada
http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca

Healthy Alberta
http://www.healthyalberta.com

REFERENCES:
Aerobic, muscle, and bone-strengthening: What counts? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/children/what_counts.htm. Updated June 5, 2015. Accessed March 2, 2016.

Chapter 3: Active children and adolescents. US Department of Health and Human Services website. Available at: http://www.health.gov/paguidelines/guidelines/chapter3.aspx. Accessed March 2, 2016.

How much physical activity do children need? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/children/index.htm. Updated June 4, 2015. Accessed March 2, 2016.

Krul M, van der Wouden JC, Schellevis FG, van Suijlekom-Smit LW, Koes BW. Musculoskeletal problems in overweight and obese children. Ann Fam Med. 2009;7(4):352-356.

NCHBI integrated guidelines for pediatric cardiovascular risk reduction. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated February 12, 2013. Accessed March 2, 2016.

Obesity in children and adolescents. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated February 10, 2016. Accessed March 2, 2016.

Last reviewed March 2016 by Michael Woods, MD Last Updated: 3/2/2016

EBSCO Information Services is fully accredited by URAC. URAC is an independent, nonprofit health care accrediting organization dedicated to promoting health care quality through accreditation, certification and commendation.

Healthy Recipes 101

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Healthy Recipes 101 features fit and lean recipes from online health resources!
SPINACH QUICHE
This recipe uses the prepared pie crusts found in the freezer section of your supermarket. You can find some alternative brands with more fiber and less saturated fat at health food and specialty stores. Since prepared pie crusts are usually high in fat, we’re keeping the filling nice and light. Read More

Written by WebMD.com

Healthy Recipes 101

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Healthy Recipes 101 features fit and lean recipes from online health resources!

HEALTHY MULTIGRAIN MUFFINS
This recipe makes delicious, healthy and versatile muffins. I have tried cranberries, apple pieces, almonds and macadamias as well. You can use any fruit or nut that you especially like. Read More

Written by contributor to Food.com

vanilla smoothie

Healthy Recipes 101: Vanilla Protein Shake – PTandMe

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Healthy Recipes 101 features fit and lean recipes to help you feel great!

VANILLA PROTEIN SHAKE
If you are looking for a healthy meal replacement, this is it! This vanilla protein shake was given to us by a colleague, who we have on good authority, drinks these regularly.

Ingredients
• 1-1/2 1-1/2 cups unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
• 1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder
• 1 tbsp. flaxseed oil or ground flaxseed meal
• ¼ tbsp. of cinnamon
• 1 -2 packets of Stevia to sweeten (optional)
Directions
Put everything into a blender and process until smooth. Enjoy!

 

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Healthy Recipes 101

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Healthy Recipes 101 features fit and lean recipes from online health resources!

LIGHTER SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS
Where we saved fat for this healthy recipe: stretched out the decadence of the beef by adding a Portobello mushroom and using an egg white; we added fiber by using whole-wheat spaghetti. Read More

Written by Food Network Kitchens

weight loss

Weight Loss: What Are Your Options?

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WeightLoss_FBsize

The prevalence of obesity has increased steadily in Western cultures over the past century, particularly during the last several decades. In fact, most health professionals agree that we are in the midst of an obesity epidemic in the United States.

Being overweight is closely linked to many very serious health conditions. It is a significant risk factor for coronary artery disease (CAD), stroke, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, low levels of HDL (high-density lipoprotein—the “good” cholesterol), and type 2 diabetes. Fortunately, even modest reductions in weight can help reduce the risk or improve these conditions. Plus, practicing the behavioral changes of a healthier diet and regular exercise may actually reduce these risk factors whether weight loss occurs or not.

Energy Balance: The Simple Principle of Weight Loss
Scientists often explain weight loss quite simply in terms of the energy balance equation: energy in versus energy out. To lose weight, you must consume fewer calories than you burn or, in reverse, you must burn more calories than you consume.

This is, of course, easier said than done. But no matter what weight loss methods you may employ—diet, exercise, medications, supplements, surgery, therapy, group support—the principle of energy balance is unavoidable. In fact, experts from both traditional and nontraditional disciplines agree that to achieve and maintain weight loss you must make changes in your diet and activity level to favorably affect the balance of the energy equation.

Using Strategies to Get Started
Getting started is often the most difficult part of losing weight. Any changes you make in your eating and exercising behaviors must become habitual, which takes time. In addition, carrying extra weight, no matter how much, can affect how you feel about yourself psychologically, sometimes making it more difficult to take the necessary steps to begin to change.

The following 5 strategies are crucial to successful weight loss and can help to overcome some of these barriers:

• Set and commit to realistic goals and monitor your progress toward achieving these goals
• Slowly modify your eating and exercise behaviors, as well as habits influencing both
• Examine and restructure unrealistic, negative thoughts, or expectations
Reduce stress
• Develop a network of social support and information

weight_loss

Looking at Weight Loss Aids
There is a great deal of interest in whether prescription medications or supplements can facilitate weight loss. Some medications suppress appetite by interfering with brain chemicals that affect mood and appetite. Others reduce fat absorption from the gut. Here are examples of medications that may be recommended for weight loss:

• Diethylpropion
• Lorcaserin
• Orlistat
• Phendimetrazine
• Phentermine—can be taken alone or in combination with another medication

Some studies have supported the use of these medications when combined with lifestyle changes. For example, as part of a review of weight loss drugs, researchers analyzed 15 trials involving almost 10,000 people who were either taking orlistat or placebo. Compared to the placebo group, those taking orlistat had a higher chance of achieving a 5% or 10% weight loss. These types of medications, though, are usually prescribed only for people who are severely obese when other methods of weight loss have not worked. Accordingly, these medications are not without side effects or potential adverse events and should only be used with careful monitoring by your doctor.

The same goes for dietary supplements. Supplements do not undergo the same rigorous approval process as drugs. That being said, certain supplements may provide weight loss benefits since they may contain similar mechanisms of action as drugs. Along the same line, some of the same risks and side effects may be present, as well, which is why you should talk to your doctor before taking any over-the-counter weight loss products.

Also, be sure you know what is in diet medications and supplements. Some medications and supplements that were used in the past have been pulled from the market as it was found that the dangers of taking them were higher than the benefits. Whenever you are considering taking a diet supplement, know exactly what is in the product and share this information with your doctor.

The question is: when should you consider taking these weight loss aids? While it depends on your overall health and medical history, the best approach may be a conservative one. For example, adopt lifestyle changes for 6-12 months before trying a drug or supplement. Your doctor can give you guidance as to which weight loss options you should try first.

by Jackie Hart, MD

RESOURCES:
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
http://www.niddk.nih.gov

CANADIAN RESOURCES:
Dietitians of Canada
http://www.dietitians.ca

Health Canada
http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca

REFERENCES:
Choosing a safe and successful weight-loss program. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disorders. Available at: http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-topics/weight-control/choosing-safe-successful-weight-loss-program/Pages/choosing-safe-successful-weight-loss-program.aspx. Updated December 2012. Accessed January 14, 2016.

Diets for weight loss. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated December 21, 2015. Accessed January 14, 2016.

Obesity in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated December 21, 2015. Accessed January 14, 2016.

Rucker D, Padwal R, Li SK, Curioni C, Lau DC. Long term pharmacotherapy for obesity and overweight: updated meta-analysis. BMJ. 2007;335(7631):1194-1199.

Weight loss medications for obesity in adults. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated October 7, 2015. Accessed January 14, 2016.

7/6/2009 DynaMed’s Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Seo DC, Sa J. A meta-analysis of psycho-behavioral obesity interventions among US multiethnic and minority adults. Prev Med. 2008;47(6):573-582.

10/15/2010 DynaMed’s Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: US Food and Drug Administration. Meridia (sibutramine): market withdrawal due to risk of serious cardiovascular events. US Food and Drug Administration website. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch/SafetyInformation/SafetyAlertsforHumanMedicalProducts/ucm228830.htm. Updated Sepember 9, 2013. Accessed January 14, 2016.

Last reviewed July 2016 by Michael Woods, MD Last Updated: 1/14/2016

EBSCO Information Services is fully accredited by URAC. URAC is an independent, nonprofit health care accrediting organization dedicated to promoting health care quality through accreditation, certification and commendation.