Sunday, December 06, 2009
WHAT IS ARTHRITIS?
Arthritis means loss of the surface cartilage of the end of a bone that makes up a joint. The shoulder, elbow, hip, knee and ankle are potential sites for arthritis. Arthritis can lead to joint inflammation, swelling, stiffness, tenderness, redness, or warmth. One type of inflammatory arthritis is known as 'rheumatoid arthritis'. Degenerative joint disease that is non-inflammatory is known as 'osteoarthritis' and is the most common type of arthritis. It usually affects weight-bearing joints such as the hip and knee. In general, the shoulder, elbow and ankle are much less affected by arthritis then the hip and knee.
OSTEORTHRITIS usually affects one joint at a time, gradually destroying the cartilage. Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, affects tens of millions of Americans. This disease is found in many different joints in the body, but particularly in the knees, neck, back, hips and fingers. It commonly causes pain, inflammation and decreased range of motion. Osteoarthritis is generally considered to be a relentless and irreversible process of joint destruction. Medical treatment relies upon nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin, ibuprofen, etc., to treat the symptoms but they do not slow the progression of the disease. In fact, there is evidence that long-term use of NSAID’s can cause further joint damage and accelerate the progression of osteoarthritis by inhibiting synthesis of proteoglycans, a group of proteins that make up the “ground substance” of cartilage. This is what gives the joints their strength and resilience.
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10 Self Treatment Ways You Can Protect Your Joints
EXERCISE AND JOINTS
Regular, moderate exercise reduces joint pain and stiffness, builds strong muscle around the joints, and increases flexibility and endurance. Improve your overall health and fitness by taking a first step toward a healthier you.
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis, with nearly 27 million Americans living with it today. No longer considered just a consequence of aging, researchers now have several candidates when looking for a cause: musculoskeletal defects, genetic defects, obesity, or injury and overuse. Find more resources for managing OA at the end of this article.
While you may not be able to control a genetic trait or knock knees, there are some definite actions you can take to protect your joints and help prevent OA.
1. MAINTAIN YOUR IDEAL BODY WEIGHT. The more you weigh, the more stress you are putting on your joints, especially your hips, knees, back and feet.
2. MOVE YOUR BODY. Exercise protects joints by strengthening the muscles around them. Strong muscles keep your joints from rubbing against one another, wearing down cartilage.
3. STAND UP STRAIGHT. Good posture protects the joints in your neck, back, hips and knees.
4. USE THE BIG JOINTS. When lifting or carrying, use largest and strongest joints and muscles. This will help you avoid injury and strain on your smaller joints.
5. PACE YOURSELF. Alternate periods of heavy activity with periods of rest. Repetitive stress on joints for long periods of time can accelerate the wear and tear that causes OA.
6. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. If you are in pain, don't ignore it. Pain after activity or exercise can be an indication that you have overstressed your joints.
7. DON'T BE STATIC. Changing positions regularly will decrease the stiffness in your muscles and joints.
8. FORGET THE WEEKEND WARRIOR. Don't engage in activities your body for which your body isn't prepared. Start new activities slowly and safely until you know how your body will react to them. This will reduce the chance of injury.
9. WEAR PROPER SAFETY EQUIPMENT. Don't leave helmets and wrist pads at home. Make sure you get safety gear that is comfortable and fits appropriately.
10. ASK FOR HELP. Don't try to do a job that is too big for you to handle. Get another pair of hands to help out.
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For more information on preventing osteoarthritis, PLUS tips on making your daily activities easier on your joints:
~ Order a copy of the Arthritis Foundation publication "Good Living with Osteoarthritis"
Click on this link afstore.arthritis.org/AFConsumerStor
~ Visit the web store and check out the new "Tips for Good Living with Arthritis".
Click on this link afstore.arthritis.org/AFConsumerStor
~ Take time to learn how to care for yourself. Find out more from the editors of 'Arthritis Today'.
Click on this link www.arthritistoday.org/
You can go to this website for more info: www.arthritis.org/protect-your-joint
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Good info - Do you do any of the preventions above?
Thursday, November 19, 2009
ANTHONY "TONY" ROBBINS
CHANGE YOUR LIFE NOW
"There is a powerful driving force inside every human being that once, unleashed, can make any vision, dream or desire a reality." ~ Anthony Robbins
If you haven't heard of Anthony Robbins before ~ get to know him now! He is power packed as a self-help writer and professional speaker who has been active for over 30 years now. He became well known through his infomercials (Personal Power) and bestselling self-help books ("Unlimited Power": "The New Science Of Personal Achievement" and "Awaken The Giant Within" ).
He writes about subjects such as health and energy, overcoming fears, persuasive communication, and enhancing relationships. He also became well known in America and internationally through infomercials promoting personal development audio programs and motivational seminars.
Here are some mighty fine advice below that came from the Anthony Robbins Organization. Read them, I mean REALLY READ THEM, and apply them in your life.
1 ~ Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully
2 ~ Marry a man/woman you love to talk to. As you get older, their conversational skills will be as important as any other.
3 ~ Don't believe all you hear, spend all you have or sleep all you want.
4 ~ When you say, 'I love you ,' mean it.
5 ~ When you say, 'I'm sorry,' look the person in the eye
6 ~ Be engaged at least six months before you get married.
7 ~ Believe in love at first sight.
8 ~ Never laugh at anyone's dream. People who don't have dreams don't have much.
9 ~ Love deeply and passionately. You might get hurt but it's the only way to live life completely.
10 ~ In disagreements, fight fairly. No name calling.
11 ~ Don't judge people by their relatives.
12 ~ Talk slowly but think quickly.
13 ~ When someone asks you a question you don't want to answer, smile and ask, 'Why do you want to know?'
14 ~ Remember that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
15 ~ Say 'bless you' when you hear someone sneeze.
16 ~ When you lose, don't lose the lesson!
17 ~ Remember the three R's: Respect for self; Respect for others; and responsibility for all your actions.
18 ~ Don't let a little dispute injure a great friendship...
19 ~ When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
20 ~ Smile when picking up the phone. The caller will hear it in your voice.
21 ~ Spend some time alone.
"A real decision is measured by the fact that you've taken a new action. If there's no action, you haven't truly decided. Action is the foundational key to all success" ~ Anthony Robbins
After reading his books, listening to his seminars, I am motivated and focused! That is why I always do reflections on my days off - to see what transpired my previous week. Then revamp and make a change for the upcoming weeks.
Now, after reading above, would any of the advice help you?
Let's make a difference, shall we?
Sunday, November 15, 2009
THE AMAZING CUCUMBER
This information was in The New York Times several weeks ago as part of their "Spotlight on the Home" series that highlighted creative and fanciful ways to solve common problems. A few people have blogged this to continue to share this information and that is what I am doing...sharing it with you too!
1. VITAMINS ~ Cucumbers contain most of the vitamins you need every day, just one cucumber contains Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Zinc.
2. A BOOSTER ~ Feeling tired in the afternoon, put down the caffeinated soda and pick up a cucumber. Cucumbers are a good source of B Vitamins and Carbohydrates that can provide that quick pick-me-up that can last for hours.
3. ANTI-FOGGER ~ Tired of your bathroom mirror fogging up after a shower? Try rubbing a cucumber slice along the mirror, it will eliminate the fog and provide a soothing, spa-like fragrance.
4. BUG-FREE PLANT ~ Are grubs and slugs ruining your planting beds? Place a few slices in a small pie tin and your garden will be free of pests all season long. The chemicals in the cucumber react with the aluminum to give off a scent undetectable to humans but drive garden pests crazy and make them flee the area.
5. CELLULITE QUICK FIX ~ Looking for a fast and easy way to remove cellulite before going out or to the pool? Try rubbing a slice or two of cucumbers along your problem area for a few minutes, the phytochemicals in the cucumber cause the collagen in your skin to tighten, firming up the outer layer and reducing the visibility of cellulite. Works great on wrinkles too!!!
6. HANGOVER / HEADACHE FREE ~ Want to avoid a hangover or terrible headache? Eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed and wake up refreshed and headache free. Cucumbers contain enough sugar, B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish essential nutrients the body lost, keeping everything in equilibrium, avoiding both a hangover and headache!!
7. AVOID SNACKING ~ Looking to fight off that afternoon or evening snacking binge? Cucumbers have been used for centuries and often used by European trappers, traders and explores for quick meals to thwart off starvation.
8. SHOE POLISH QUICK FIX ~ Have an important meeting or job interview and you realize that you don't have enough time to polish your shoes? Rub a freshly cut cucumber over the shoe, its chemicals will provide a quick and durable shine that not only looks great but also repels water.
9. SQUEAKY HINGE ~ Out of WD 40 and need to fix a squeaky hinge? Take a cucumber slice and rub it along the problematic hinge, and voila, the squeak is gone!
10. REDUCE STRESS ~ Stressed out and don't have time for massage, facial or visit to the spa? Cut up an entire cucumber and place it in a boiling pot of water, the chemicals and nutrients from the cucumber with react with the boiling water and be released in the steam, creating a soothing, relaxing aroma that has been shown the reduce stress in new mothers and college students during final exams.
11. BAD BREATH ~ Just finish a business lunch and realize you don't have gum or mints? Take a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds to eliminate bad breath, the photochemicals will kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath.
12. CLEANING GREEN ~ Looking for a 'green' way to clean your faucets, sinks or stainless steel? Take a slice of cucumber and rub it on the surface you want to clean, not only will it remove years of tarnish and bring back the shine, but is won't leave streaks and won't harm you fingers or fingernails while you clean.
13. ERASE PEN / CRAYON ERRORS ~ Using a pen and made a mistake? Take the outside of the cucumber and slowly use it to erase the pen writing, also works great on crayons and markers that the kids have used to decorate the walls!!
Can YOU think of any other use from a cucumber? Here's one I've used:
TIRED, PUFFY EYES ~ Peel and slice cucumbers in a container of water and store in fridge. When tired and/or have puffy eyes, take two slices and drain most of the water and place one slice over each closed eye lids and leave on for 15 to 20 minutes - relax on a sofa or lounger. Dispose cucumbers and continue with your normal facial regimen.
Saturday, November 07, 2009
Today's QuickFire Challenge is Power Walking and this is the first time I've read the link regarding an easy 12-week walking program from Better Homes and Garden and I am going to try it!
This past week, my Aunt and a good friend have passed away and I was an emotional wreck, mentally. I didn't want to work, so I took the day off and in their honor, I decided to go for a walk-a-bout. I hardly eat when I am depressed or stressed (just do protein shakes and lots of soups!), but I felt like I have to 'do' something. I was SO focused in my walking, I didn't realize the time as I kept moving forward to clear my head. When I looked at my pedometer, I realized I had walked over 4 miles, non-stop. I had my harnessed water bottle 'sling' over my shoulder and drank every 15 minutes or so, never faltering my steps. Now, if I can do this, I know I can do the 5K. I just need a program to get me started in the right direction with the right frame of mind.
So, let's get started, shall we?
Walking is free, it's easy, and it makes a real difference, even if you don't always reach the U.S. Surgeon General's recommendation of 30 minutes on most days. By starting a walking routine, you'll live longer, gaining two hours of life expectancy for every hour of vigorous exercise according to the American Heart Association, and you could burn 125 calories per half hour (depending on your pace).
Here's some tips on creating a walking program that will improve your overall health.
WEEKS 1 and 2
Focus on savoring the outdoors, no matter the season, and you'll be a natural walker. If you choose to stride inside, listen to music while strolling in a mall or walking on a treadmill. On a scale of 1 to 10, in which 1 is napping on the couch and 10 is gasping for air, aim to walk at a pace of about 5. You should be able to talk, but with slight breathlessness. In the first week, walk in 10-minute bouts three to four times a week. Add another two minutes per walk in the second week.
WEEKS 3 and 4
Try to walk from 20 to 30 minutes at a time, picking up the pace, and add an extra day's walk by the month's end. Focus on form during these two weeks. Stand up straight, with shoulders back and tummy tight to protect your back. Keep your chin parallel to the ground. Raise your intensity -- and pulse -- by making pistons of your arms. Bend your elbows at an 85-degree angle and move them from mid-chest level to your hips and back.
WEEKS 5 and 6
Keep it interesting by changing routes and music. And add intervals to one or two walks a week: Start by walking 5 minutes at a steady pace. Then walk as fast as you can for 90 seconds. Recover for the next 90 seconds by walking at a leisurely pace. If you're outside and without a watch, speed up from one light pole to the next. Repeat another four times, and cool down with a 5-minute stroll. In the coming weeks, expand high-intensity portions or cut relaxed ones by 15 seconds when you're ready to take it up a notch.
WEEKS 7 and 8
Exercise itself is a reward. But adding in little treats, such as an occasional massage, will make your program more fun and help you stay motivated. Looking for a more creative reward? Sign up for the American Diabetes Association's Club Ped (diabetes.org/ClubPed/index.jsp). As you reach a goal, the club rewards you by revealing a new chapter to a mystery, romance, or adventure novel. You also can choose a virtual dog. You can pick the dog's personality, and the more you walk, the happier your pooch gets.
WEEKS 9 through 12
Mix things up. Check with your local Humane Society to see if they have weekly dog walkings in which you take out a pound pup for a much-needed walk along a trail. Or, if you're ready for the commitment, think about adopting one to make every walk more of an adventure. Also, continue to boost the briskness and length of your walks by a few minutes per session. Don't be surprised if something interesting happens at the three-month mark. That's when exercise becomes a habit for most and you begin to crave the feeling that comes with it. Set new, more ambitious goals, such as entering an upcoming charity 5K.
STRETCH IT OUT
Stretching a little goes a long way toward pain-free walking. After your walks, do these moves to target the muscles you've worked. Gently hold each stretch 10-20 seconds, and repeat on the other side. Remember not to bounce.
~ HAMSTRINGS: To loosen the back of your thigh, stand straight on one leg and place the other foot on a low bench or ledge. Lean your body slowly forward at the hip. Keep your back straight as you do this.
~ QUADRICEPS: Try the Flamingo to stretch the front of your thigh. Place one hand on the wall and, while standing on one leg, bend the other knee, and hold your ankle or foot behind your rear. Keep your torso upright and knees together.
~ CALVES: Stand facing a wall with palms against it. Stretch one leg behind you. Keep both feet flat on the floor. Bend your other knee slightly forward, but not beyond your toe. Keep toes pointed forward, hips parallel to the wall and back straight.
So, I shall try this program and see how I progress. I really, really want to do a 5K..."just because" ~ just to say that I entered a race...it WILL happen and I hope you are here to hear me say...
"I DID IT!"
WALK ON ~ Jazzy!!
Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Portion control is an important part of maintaining a healthy diet. Here are 10 easy ways to limit what you eat.
Portion control is limiting what you eat. So, it's important to know how to visualize a portion size. The first step in successful portion control is learning the correct 'serving size'. It's amazing how we all see differently what a portion size really is. The good news is that with a little practice, portion control is easy to do and can help people be successful in reaching and then maintaining a proper weight
Here are 10 simple ways to keep your portions a healthy size:
1. MEASURE ACCURATELY. For foods and beverages, use gadgets like a measuring cup, tablespoon, teaspoon, or food scale.
2. LEARN HOW TO ESTIMATE SERVING SIZES. “‘Ballpark’ food portion sizes by estimating serving sizes in comparison to known objects,” says Rose Clifford, RD, clinical dietitian. “For example, three ounces of COOKED meat, fish, or poultry is about the size of a deck of cards.” Other easy measurements to eyeball include:
~ ½ cup is the size of an ice cream scoop
~ 1 cup is the size of a tennis ball
~ 1 ounce of cheese is the size of a domino
3. USE PORTION CONTROL DISHWARE. Pick out smaller plates, bowls, cups, and glassware in your kitchen and measure what they hold. You might find that a bowl you thought held 8 ounces of soup actually holds 16, meaning you’ve been eating twice what you planned.
4. DISH OUT YOUR SERVINGS SEPARATELY. Serve food from the stove onto plates rather than family-style at the table, which encourages seconds.
5. MAKE YOUR OWN SINGLE-SERVING PACKS. "Re-portion bulk quantities of favorite foods such as pasta, rice, and cereal into individual portions in zipper bags so that when you’re in the mood for some food you’ll instantly see the number of portions you’re preparing,” says Jennifer Nasser, RD, PhD.
6. ADD THE MILK BEFORE THE COFFEE. When possible, put your (fat-free) milk into the cup before adding the hot beverage to better gauge the amount used.
7. MEASURE OIL CAREFULLY. This is especially important because oil (even the healthful kinds like olive and safflower) have so many calories; don’t pour it directly into your cooking pan or over food.
8. CONTROL PORTIONS WHEN EATING OUT. Eat half or share the meal with a friend. If eating a salad, ask for dressing on the side. Dip your fork into the dressing and then into the salad.
9. ADD VEGETABLES. Eat a cup of low-calorie vegetable soup prior to eating a meal, or add vegetables to casseroles and sandwiches to add volume without a lot of calories.
10. LISTEN TO YOUR HUNGER CUES. Eat when hungry and stop when satisfied or comfortably full. “Try to gauge when you are 80 percent full and stop there,” says Clifford. “There will be more food at the next meal or snack!”
Here's what I've been doing with the above list, especially since I've been banded last year:
1. Use measuring cups/spoons, and food scale
2. Other than doing #1, I measured my food and find something that equals to it's size and take a picture of it. Then I made a 'visual collage' per se and then laminate it for future reference.
3. I use a small salad or dessert plate to serve food on. In addition, I use child-size3 utensils. When eating out, I use a small salad fork.
4. I always serve myself and from the 'pot'.
5. I've already been doing this.
~ I do lots of 'grab bits' of protein snacks in those wonderful SNACK-size ziplock bags.
~ When batch cooking, I do individual servings and freeze them separately (perfect for the "on-the-go" meals).
~ When bulk shopping, I don't freeze 'as is'. I break it down to one serving per person in a family size ziplock bag (gallon or quart size - depending on the bulkiness of food).
6. I add the milk or creamer before I pour coffee, tea, or cocoa.
7. Always use either a measuring cup or spoon.
8. With the band, it's important that I don't overeat, as not to stretch out my new stomach 'pouch', when ordering my food, I also ask for a 'box to go' and a salad plate to eat from. When my food arrive, I immediate take 1/2 or more of the food and put it in the box to go. This way, I won't feel 'guilty' in leaving food on my plate. Eating from a smaller plate and if I've eaten all of my "half" order food, I would mentally feel full and the 'visual' is pleasing to me to say I ate everything on my plate!
9. I have fruit and veggies everyday for the reason to have that 'full' feeling and getting great benefits from them!
10. THIS is my ongoing challenge! I use chewable Fiber Choice (for Weight Management) - one at 10:00 am and one at 3:00 pm. Not only does it help with the hunger pangs, it's great with my rotor rooter plumbing (smile). I am trying to stay with the 3 meals/2 snacks a day.
Some days are harder forme, especially if I am super stressed out (like today with my beloved Aunt and my friend's death), my band is tight and I have to rely on protein shakes/protein bullets and soups to get me by.
Here is the website for more information:
When it comes down to it - how serious are you with your healthy eating habits? Do you want to see your dreams come to light? Then LET'S GET THIS DONE...YOU and I, shall we?
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