May 2020 Health Newsletter

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Hi everyone,

I trust you were able to find a way to celebrate Mother's Day with your loved ones. I am sure you were creative in spending time with your family. For the first time in my life, I think, I am without words as this pandemic and unprecedented Stay Home order continues on. I've tried to think of something to share with you but every commercial has turned this into a way to advertise something. I re-read the following paragraphs and I really can't say much else so I am leaving them for you to review. I will do my best to have fresh topics for the June newsletter. In the meantime, I pray that we will all be able to resume normal activities by then. Our physical, mental, spiritual, and financial health depend on it. 

I hope you are well and safe as we progress through this unprecedented time. We are open during our normal business hours through the pandemic to help you manage your pain and stress. We are seeing more patients who have been working from home on less than optimal work areas and are unable to manage their symptoms on their own. Stress levels have gone up substantially as we learn to distance ourselves from our friends, family, and co-workers and adapt to our new environment. We are even facing the inability to spend time with our loved ones during Easter. This physical, emotional, and spiritual stress has a very large role to play in our ability to fend off the coronavirus. Have you developed some healthy coping mechanisms?

Dr. Bob Rakowski, the colleague I referenced last month, has a mantra for health that makes everyone smile. He states that we need to eat right, drink right, think right, move right, sleep right, speak right, and poop right. smile Did you giggle? Seriously though, those ideas are essential to maintaining good health. No medication, vaccine, chiropractic treatment, massage, or any other "tool" we utilize in our search for good health is more effective than those seven "rights". 

One of my greatest hopes as we slowly return to normal is that we use this experience to evaluate our lifestyle choices. Research is emerging that diabetics are much harder hit by the coronavirus. This isn't surprising since diabetes medication (among many others) reduces immune system function. Elevated blood sugars reduce immune function. What are you choosing to eat during this stressful time? Most people turn to food for comfort. I notice the shelves at the grocery store that typically stock sugar, boxed foods, cookies, cakes, etc. are usually empty. This is because we are experiencing tremendous stress. Stress triggers the craving centers in our brains. We crave sugar (quick energy) because thousands of years ago stress meant life or death as we fled the sabre toothed tiger. Now, stress in ongoing and we continually reach for comfort food like cakes, cookies, pastries, pasta, pizza, fast food because it feeds our cravings. When was the last time you were dying for a celery stick? Sugar and stress are disease's best friend. They cause inflammation which leads to disease. It is not possible at this time to make radical changes to your menu but you can make one or two small changes. When you crave a sugary treat, substitute it with a walk around your yard. Reach for some water instead of soda. Add a lemon, lime, or other fruit to your water if you need some flavor. Any small change is a giant step towards becoming stronger and healthier and giving your body its best defense. 

We are starting to see the buds on the trees and our grass is greening up. That means ALLERGIES for many people. I suspect this will create a whole new wave of concern, fear, and judgment as people start to cough and sneeze. Please learn the differences in symptoms of colds, flus, COVID-19 and allergies. The biggest difference between allergies and the others is lack of fever. Allergies don't cause a fever so please don't allow fear to take over if you start coughing, sneezing, get shortness of breath, chest tightness, and/or a runny nose. Be diligent, take your temperature, call your doctor's office, but please try to remain calm and recognize that not all symptoms are caused by COVID-19.

As I stated at the beginning of this introduction, we are open to help you. We are sanitizing, distancing, and making sure no one is within 6 feet of others (except of course for Dr. Tollefson, Susan, and me). It is safe for you to come as long as you observe the CDC recommendations for contagion. If you are unsure about coming in just call us and we can decide if it is appropriate. We can also help you over the phone if it isn't the right time for you to actually come in. We want to help in any way we can. You may notice that we are not wearing masks. We have made our decision based on studies from the Annuals of Internal Medicine and the University of Minnesota. These studies conclude that surgical and cloth masks do not prevent the dissemination of SARS-CoV-2 and we feel it is important to preserve the supply of surgical masks for at-risk healthcare workers. You are welcome to wear a mask if you feel safer but we do not require one.

Try to remain positive, stay in touch with your loved ones and friends and be kind to each other. We have been through many challenges as a species and we will survive and flourish again. 

As always, please call us to get evaluated or adjusted if you are injured. Time is of the essence in restoring normal joint alignment and promoting soft tissue healing after an injury, whether it involves a sport, a fall, or a car accident. I mentioned last month that muscles and ligaments repair in six weeks. Whether they heal with healthy new fibers or scar tissue depends on getting chiropractic care or ignoring the injury. Not sure if you need to schedule? Call us and we can help you determine if you need an appointment. We are here to help. 

Don't forget to join us on Facebook for timely health-related articles and information. Like us on the homepage of our website to receive this information.

Susan, Dr. Tollefson, and I send you virtual hugs, hope, and happiness. Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend and remember that our service members fought and gave their lives for our freedom. 

Dr. Tracy


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Current Articles

» Orthotic Footwear
» Chiropractic Care Is An Essential Service
» Chronological vs. Subjective Age: If You Think You Are Old, You Will Be
» Why Older Women Should Eat Their Vegetables

Orthotic Footwear

Author: Tracy Andrews
Source: Foot Levelers

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Chiropractic Care Is An Essential Service

With the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, it's important to understand that chiropractic services are truly essential services and the majority of chiropractic offices around the nation remain open to provide essential care and relief to the public. In fact, Homeland Security has specifically included chiropractors in their list of essential healthcare workers. Obtaining professional chiropractic care earlier may also reduce the likelihood patients will end up in urgent care or the emergency room where increased risk of exposure to COVID-19 is possible. If you're in need of chiropractic care, please contact our office today to ensure you don’t continue to suffer and to avoid entering other healthcare offices where there may be an increased exposure risk to COVID-19.


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Chronological vs. Subjective Age: If You Think You Are Old, You Will Be

"You're only as old as you think you are" has been a popular saying for many years. People who honestly feel this way really do act, and oftentimes look, younger than their age. Conversely, some people seem to age quickly and decline mentally and physically simply because they think they're old once they've reached a certain age. Is there scientific backing for the old saying: "You’re only as old as you think you are?" Research done in 2014 at the University of Montpellier in France studied the correlation between chronological age, subjective age, and changes in memory. What the researchers found is eye-opening. A person's subjective age is the age they feel they are mentally and physically. Someone in good physical and mental shape may be 60, 70 or 80 years of age, but feel like they aren't a day over 50. On the other hand, someone dealing with illness or chronic pain may feel like they’re 80 when they're only 60. Researchers have found that saying, thinking, or feeling older than one actually is can cause depression and memory problems. People who feel younger had a slower memory decline and quicker recall capabilities. A person's subjective age has a lot to do with how they feel physically and mentally. Implementing the following four practices will help one feel younger than ever:
1. Daily exercise
2. Eating nutrient dense foods
3. Regular mental exercises, like puzzles, reading or learning a language
4. Being surrounded by happy, positive people.
Chiropractic treatments are vital in pain reduction and management. In addition to a healthy diet and active lifestyle, getting regular chiropractic treatments are a great way to stay healthy and young.

Source: J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci (2016) 71 (4): 675-683.

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Why Older Women Should Eat Their Vegetables

An Australian study of 954 women aged 70 and older has found that the more vegetables older women eat, the less likely they are to develop plaque accumulation in their arteries. Lauren Blekkenhorst, a nutrition researcher at the University of Western Australia and lead author of the study, found that study participants averaged 2.7 servings of vegetables per day. Using a food questionnaire to categorize responses, researchers determined that women who consumed three servings of vegetables per day had artery walls that were about 5 percent less thick than women who ate less than two servings. One of the most beneficial types of vegetables for artery health was found to be the crucifer family — cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and broccoli. For each third of an ounce more cruciferous vegetables participants ate, they had a corresponding 0.8 percent less artery wall thickness. This means even a small increase in vegetable consumption can have big benefits for vascular health. Blekkenhorst hypothesizes that eating vegetables may make arteries healthier because it leaves less room for junk food. In addition, the vitamins and minerals present in vegetables have been shown to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation, which can lead to better cardiovascular health. Although the study was not meant to predict long-term cardiovascular health, it does show how easily your diet impacts vascular health. Adding just a serving or two of vegetables to your diet each day can make help you stay healthier, longer.

Source: Journal of the American Heart Association, online April 4, 2018.

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