Tag Archives: Lifestyle

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simplify your health

Simplify Your Family’s Health

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Life is not complex.  We are complex.  Life is simple,
and the simple thing is the right thing.
– Oscar Wilde

Minimalism can provide many benefits to your life, be it less stress, more money or more time. What many people don’t realize is that it also applies to your family’s health and well-being. We are often told we couldn’t possibly figure out how to improve our health on our own, that it is a very complicated process. The truth is – it isnt.

If you follow these simple yet essentials tips your family’s health will improve, without leaving you overwhelmed (or broke!).

Move your body in a way you enjoy.

Traditional “exercise” is not mandatory. Sure, you can join a gym if you’d like but it’s not necessary – and the downside is your children can’t exercise with you. So, instead – why not walk more?

It’s that simple. Move your body way more than you currently are and your health will improve. Walking is a refreshing alternative to complicated aerobic routines and overpriced gym memberships –  it’s free, enjoyable and already a part of your everyday life. Plus, the whole family can be involved – even the dog!

The benefits of walking are endless – so let’s just name a few: it helps prevent and reduce the severity of chronic disease (like high blood pressure and diabetes), it also improves mood and mobility. The best part about these benefits is that it doesn’t take much time from your day to achieve them. Thirty minutes a day is where we see start to see great health benefits.

Besides these health benefits – there’s also quality and uninterrupted time as a family: Being outdoors and breathing fresh air promotes a sense of calmness that can lead to bonding time and better conversations. In addition, you’re leading by example -setting a great example by modeling good healthy exercise habits that can reap future benefits in a child’s attitude towards exercise and fitness.

If walking isn’t your thing – do something else. Hiking, pillow fights, dancing to music, bike rides, jumping on the bed, whatever your kids enjoy – anything to get your family moving.

Eat Clean

This one truly is simple – research has proven what matters most: make sure your diet consists mostly of real, minimally processed foods.

To successfully implement this into your life remember we often eat what’s convenient, and if you buy it and keep it in the house, you’ll eat it – so don’t buy it in the first place. The following are some basic ground rules to follow when eating clean. Eat more organic and/or local fruits and vegetables, and remember the fresher the food, the more potent the nutrients. Drink more pure filtered water (Divide your weight by 2, aim to drink that number in ounces). Eat a handful of raw nuts/seeds everyday. When it comes to meat and dairy – choose products where animals live as close to their natural state as possible -free-range, cage-free, grass-fed, raw milk etc.). Lower your intake of inflammatory/mucus producing foods (dairy, sugar, wheat) and instead aim to eat more raw foods that contain powerful enzymes and phytonutrients (try juicing).

You can even involve your children by letting them help make a green smoothie; this can be any combination of several greens, avocado, coconut oil, and a little fruit. They deliver great nutrient-dense antioxidants and phytonutrients from vegetables with the fruit added to sweeten and lessen any bitterness from the chard, kale and spinach. They taste great and your children will learn about new foods and become more comfortable in the kitchen. Just remember the 3 main ingredients should be plants, fat, and protein (not all fruit/sugar).

Make Sleep a Priority

Sleep is often the single most undervalued behavior in our lives—and yet it is the one with the most immediate power to improve our lives in every waking moment. Getting a good night of sleep is one of the cornerstones of health, your body needs this time to repair and heal. Research shows that inadequate sleep can have disastrous effects on your weight loss efforts, impair your concentration, and weaken your immune system.

When it comes to bedtimes – the earlier is truly the better. Now, I know early bedtimes may not be possible with some families’ schedules, which is totally understandable. But for those who can do it – I strongly urge you to try.

Research consistently shows that putting kids to bed early is beneficial for their physical, emotional, and cognitive development. Not only do kids tend to sleep more when the lights go out sooner, but they also may get a greater proportion of restorative sleep, too. Early kid bedtimes are also great for parental sanity. Sipping a glass of wine in silence? Snuggling up with your spouse to watch a grown-up movie for once? It’s really quite lovely.

In addition- sleep that happens earlier in the night tends to be more restorative than sleep that takes place later at night and in the early morning. So putting your kid to bed early may ensure that a higher proportion of her sleep is the extra-restful kind. And well-rested kids behave quite differently than sleep-deprived kids.

When kids (and adults) are sleep-deprived, their bodies release hormones including cortisol, adrenaline, and noradrenaline, which give them a second wind at bedtime and also make it harder for them go back to sleep early in the morning.

If sleep is an issue it’s worth noting – if you follow the other tips we mention here (walking more, eating cleaner, and getting adjusted) – your sleep will most definitely improve.

Remove Interference

Chiropractic care can literally change your family’s life, and enable you to live a pain-free life full of energy and vitality. That’s because chiropractic adjustments help reduce or eliminate pressure on your nerves—the same ones responsible for your everyday bodily functions. Chiropractic will help eliminate pain and inflammation, reduce fatigue, and restore normal balance and nerve flow to all your organs, giving you the energy, drive and peace of mind to go out there and live life the way it was meant to be lived.

Your child’s spine is affected by a multitude of things: starting with birth, leading to crawling/walking and slips and falls, to backpacks, texting, and computers as they grow older. If statistics are what motivates you – consider this – in the US alone, over 200,000 children are taken to hospital each year to have playground injuries assessed. Other likely times that our children will become misaligned include learning to ride a bike, sporting activities or hobbies, and minor or major car accidents.

The expertise of the chiropractor is in checking the child’s spine for misalignments that impair nervous system function therefore affecting overall body function. By removing the interference to the nerves, many of these conditions can improve and/or resolve naturally – without drugs or surgery. Regular chiropractic check ups are a key component in growing healthy kids.

Focus on the lifestyle, not the goals.

Strive to make eating well and moving your body in an enjoyable way part of your family’s daily life. Enjoy the journey and do these things for the right reasons – and you’ll improve your health, fitness and quality of life.


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You Are What You Eat Ate

You Are What You Eat Ate

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The body has an incredible ability to heal itself. When the body has the right nutrients, regular movement through exercise, a great mindset, and full function of the nervous system, it has a recipe for long lasting health.

So what does that mean? It means most diseases won’t just happen to you. You have the ability to determine the direction of your health. So, lets talk about the right nutrients. When you feed your body the right building blocks you give it the best chance to experience full potential. It only makes to sense that if we feed our body processed junk (simple carbs, sugars, vegetable oils) then that is what will makes up our cells. After all, we’ve all heard the saying, “You are what you eat” – which is true – BUT what most people fail to realize is that we are also what we eat ate.

Just like humans, cows and chicken thrive when they exist on the diet that they are naturally meant to eat. I can assure you that diet is NOT genetically modified corn and soy. When we consume meat from unhealthy animals – how do you think our bodies react? This is why grass-fed beef contains between 2 and 5 times more omega-3s than grain-fed beef, Grass-fed beef also contains significantly more of the antioxidants vitamin E, glutathione, superoxide dismutase (SOD), and catalase than grain-fed beef. These antioxidants play an important role in protecting our cells from oxidation. That’s not all, grass-fed beef also contains higher levels of zinc, iron, phosphorus, sodium, and potassium. When it comes to eggs – eggs from pastured hens are more nutritious than the conventional eggs you might find at the supermarket. They are higher in Vitamin A, E and Omega-3s. They are also lower in Cholesterol and Saturated Fat.

The same hold true for produce. When you look at vegetables, what is the soil like? If the plants aren’t getting enough minerals – then you aren’t either. For example, organic crops have significantly higher antioxidant levels when compared to conventional crops.

So what can you do? Choose free-range/pastured animal products whenever possible. Choose the cheaper cuts of the best quality meat you can afford and slow cook them (the fats and skin of pastured animals are also full of great nutrients). If you can’t afford free range/grass fed meats, choose leaner cuts of non-pastured animals and discard the fat (like us, animals store their toxins in the fat layer) and use the best quality fats you can to cook them (organic coconut oil, grassfed butter, ghee). Look for wild-caught fish where possible, again the farmed varieties are fed an unnatural diet of  soy, corn and grain pellets.


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6 Ways To Get More Movement Into Your Day

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time-to-move

As a society, we need to stop thinking of exercise as something that requires a change of clothes and a warm-up – after all, you wouldn’t do either of those things in an emergency. Life is busy, and fitting in exercise can be tough – but it doesn’t have to be that hard. By making a few simple changes to your life, you’ll be in better shape in weeks. It’s worth the effort – as well as making you happier, there’s evidence that regular physical activity can protect you from everything from obesity to Alzheimer’s. To help, here are 6 ways to move more every day:

1. Always Take the Stairs

Simple, and yet so easy to avoid. It’s easy to rationalize taking the easy way – elevator, escalator, that cool motorized walkway thing at airports – because you’ve had a long day, or you’ve got a heavy bag, or because it barely burns any calories anyway, right? But that misses the point. There’s evidence that even minimal amounts of resistance exercise can increase your body’s levels of a substance called GLUT4, which encourages calories from food to be stored in muscle cells rather than as body fat – so even a single flight of stairs helps.

2. Walk More

You’ve heard this one before, but it’s worth looking at the numbers to get the full picture. According to a 2012 study, participants who ran one mile burned 112 calories, but those walking a mile still burned 88. While running means preparation, getting changed, finding a shower and – depending on how fast you go – a level of unpleasantness that can be tough to get psyched up for. Walking is just walking. Get off the bus a stop earlier, or park a little farther away and enjoy your exercise – without any need for equipment.

3. Break Up Your Sitting

We’ve addressed this over on over on this blog. Sitting down puts your body in neutral – it constricts circulation, slows your metabolism, shuts off muscles and tightens your connective tissues (fascia). Even exercising for an hour a day can’t do much to compensate for the 10 hours you spend slumping in a variety of chairs. But fortunately there’s a solution: just stand up. Take small breaks as frequently as possible. Go to the bathroom. Use a smaller water cup so you have to refill it more often. Do a lap around the office. Ask for a stand-up desk. Step outside for a minute to get some fresh air. Stand while you’re talking on the phone.

4. Sit on the Floor at Home

Yes, like a child. Here’s why: modern sofa technology has advanced to the point where you can remain essentially motionless through an entire Netflix streaming session, but if you sit on the floor for exactly the same amount of time  you’ll be squirming, stretching, essentially changing position the entire time. If you’re feeling really motivated, this would also be an ideal opportunity to foam-roll away some of the aches and pains of everyday life – there’s a brief guide to that here.

5. Do the 10-minute Squat Every Day

In most countries, the deep squat is still part of everyday life – it’s just how you sit, relax, or go to the toilet. For many Americans, user of chairs and western toilets –  – we probably haven’t done one in years. But you should – it’ll help enormously with your hip and ankle mobility, as well as providing you with a jolt of isometric exercise. Mobility expert Kelly Starrett suggests that you should be able to hold the position for 10 minutes, but if you can’t, just start with a minute at a time – it all counts, and it all adds up.

6. Get a Pull-up Bar

If you’re doing a lot of sitting – as in hunching over your desk or driving in a car all day – you should be doing pull-ups. They’ll counteract the computer-hunch, improve the health of your spine, build your arms and work your core muscles better than weighted crunches. Get a bar that clips over your door frame and aim to do one or two reps each time you pass through it during the day. Can’t do a pull-up? Try this: “Jump” to the top position, then lower yourself as slowly as you can – just for a rep or two. You’ll get there eventually.


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Your Best Year Ever

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power of potential

Our brains contain over 100 billion neurons each may have the ability to connect with 5,000 to 20,000 other neurons. The possibilities are endless…

No matter what’s going on, no matter what your past experience has been, this new year is packed with POTENTIAL.

There is every reason to feel good about the coming of any new year. After all, we are designed to be extraordinary. Every cell in your body is hardwired to be healthy. So don’t let cynicism about abandoned resolutions, broken promises, and “it’s never worked in the past” get in the way of what promises to be the starting point of something amazing.

Create an environment where you can be encouraged to be your best. Reactive health care is failing and we are seeing more degenerative disease (cancer, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis) than ever before. We must be pro-active and optimize our health so that we too don’t follow that path. Research tells us that genetics accounts for only about one-third of how long and well we live – the rest is under our control. In other words, our state of health is a result of how much we do to be healthy. Drugs and surgery aren’t designed for health. They are for sickness and disease. Health is built by lifestyle choices – day in and day out.

At True Health Family Chiropractic, we choose to focus on the untapped potential for health and vitality available for your body – we will walk you down the path to your best life. It is only getting better and better.

Launch 2015 proactively. The only one who can make this a great year is you.


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You Are As Old As Your Spine

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aging spine

Aging is not just the number of years you’ve inhabited planet Earth, but rather the degree of wear and tear your body, brain, and vital organs are expressing at a given point in time.Ronesh Sinha, MD

A spine with too much, too little, or improper movement directly affects the wiring and firing of nerves that come from your brain and travel down your spinal cord. Your brain and spinal cord act like the world’s most powerful computer chip which requires a proper information and power supply to work properly. Movement of the spine dictates how information is received in the brain through tiny little nerve ending’s called mechanoreceptors. The spine also houses critical nerves, arteries, and veins that carry food and waste in and out of the brain and spinal cord.

This is why – regardless of disease or symptoms – a healthy, properly moving, aligned spine is so essential to our health. By restoring motion to the spine (via the chiropractic adjustment), changes will begin to occur, such as: decrease in stress signals and stress hormones, decrease inflammation, and pain (if present) will subside. Most important of all, it results in a healthy body-brain neurological communication which is essential for overall health.

When it comes to your spine – the things we do on a daily basis are either moving us towards a healthy spine or away from health and towards a degenerating spine. Research shows that a joint (aka your spine) that has lost a degree of its normal movement will begin degenerating at a rate measurable within one week of onset. It’s important to realize that this degenerative process will continue, often painlessly, until significant degeneration has occurred. This is a big reason why you don’t need to be in pain to have chiropractic care in our office.

The following are the good and bad in keeping your spine as young as possible:

The Good

  • Periodic chiropractic checkups – Regardless of symptoms, the research shows we are much healthier with a properly moving spine than without.
  • Stretch regularly – Consider how inflexible most people are – how do you think they got that way? Muscles abide by the “use it or lose it” principle. Avoid this fate by isolating key muscle groups and giving them a good daily stretch (Patients in our office receive customized stretches based on their individual needs).
  • Proper hydration – Your spine and its supportive structures work best when they’re hydrated. Most people will not drink enough water to replace their original fluid deficit, and this problem is exacerbated with age.
  • Daily exercise Ideally we should be spending a good portion of our days walking, standing and moving in general. If we don’t our bodies rebel and health declines. Do some form of exercise that significantly raises your heart rate for 30 minutes at least four times a week.
  • Supportive sleep environment – Your bed and pillow should both help keep your body in natural alignment. Dated and flimsy mattresses stress your hips, pelvis, and back, which inevitably lead to chronic pain. Buy a quality pillow that keeps your head level, and use a good mattress that firmly (yet comfortably) prevents your spine from dipping or sagging while you sleep.
  • Be mindful of your posture – This applies to whatever you’re doing, whether you’re at work, home, in the car, at the gym, or simply standing up. Good posture has benefits; poor posture has consequences.
  • Proper nutrition –  A nutrient-rich diet with a diversity of plants, healthy proteins and high quality, healthy fats actually feed and nourish your genes, slowing the degenerative process.

The Bad

  • Poor general posture (slouching) – With proper postural awareness, you can save years of wear and tear on the spine, and maintain full function of the delicate nervous system.
  • Sedentary lifestyle – A study done in over 2,000 identical twins who carry the same genetic material showed that the more active twins had longer, healthier telomeres than their genetically identical siblings.  The most active twins had genes that appeared 9 years younger than their inactive siblings. Spend less time on your computer/phone and move daily.
  • Stress – Chronic stress promotes inflammation and oxidative damage that is inflicted upon DNA, which increases disease risk and accelerates aging.
  • Sleeping on your stomach – Having your head and neck turned to one side while sleeping can significantly strain the muscles and ligaments of the spine. Repeatedly doing so every night for years slowly adds pressure to the joints and nerves, contributing to spinal degeneration and allowing for the development of a variety of health problems.
  • Neglecting your spine by not getting periodic chiropractic checkups – By restoring motion and removing nerve interference – you can begin to function how you were designed to.

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