Healthy Halloween

by Codie Burns, Wellness Coordinator

HeathyHalloweenParty-48a

Halloween doesn’t have to mean a candy induced coma or rotten cavity filled teeth. Total Health Chiropractic has come up with a variety of healthier treats that will still satisfy that sweet toothed Spider-Man in the family or the Frozen Queen Elsa in your neighborhood.

Spooky Snacks for Parties
One way to conjure up some nutritious snacks is to take fruits, veggies, nuts or seeds and incorporate them into a chilling display. Make ghoulish faces or creepy body parts (eyeballs, fingers, etc.). These healthy foods can trick your party guest into eating healthier. Check out some of these ideas!


Tangerine Pumpkins and Banana Ghosts: This is a simple and very eye pleasing snack that all the kids will want to try! Peel the bananas and push chocolate chip cookies into them to make eyes and noses. After peeling the tangerines, place small pieces of celery in the top to make it resemble a pumpkin stem.

Tangerine-Pumpkins-and-Banana-Ghosts-2


Spice Pumpkin Seeds: Pumpkin seeds are loaded with vitamins, minerals and polyunsaturated omega-6 fats. It’s a great way to eat the seeds you’ll get while carving and designing your Halloween pumpkins.


Roasted Sweet Potato Jack-O-Lantern Faces & Ghosts: Use orange flesh sweet potatoes for the Jack-O-Lanterns and yellow flesh potatoes for the ghosts. Safflower, sunflower and grapeseed oils are great to use when roasting these delightful treats in the oven. Once cooked, let cool and I can guarantee all the kids will gobble these up!

wpid8656-DSC_8906


Bloody Beet soup: This simple soup isn’t much different than most soups we are used to making, but its red color creates an eerie feel.

“When it comes to your health, we’ve got your back”

Our Kids Need to Straighten Up

by Justin Phillips, D.C.

As a chiropractor, I speak with countless people daily about their posture………sit up straight, sleep on your back or side, raise your computer monitor, stretch periodically when looking down for long periods of time, and so on. However, good posture can be taught and encouraged at an early age which can help to prevent bad postural habits from developing. Helping our children to develop good habits early in life takes having the right knowledge, being alert and aware of our child’s daily activities, and being persistent as parents to encourage and reinforce these habits.

A very common symptom I deal with is neck and upper back pain due to a loss in the cervical curve (the natural curve of your neck). Your natural curve should be a gradual “C” shaped curve to provide support for the weight of your head. Losing that curve most commonly is due to a long history of looking down for long periods at a time. A common difference among children today is the use of technology along with the lack of playing around the house and outside. This increased use of technology is not a bad thing if it is used correctly and in moderation. Children now are learning very early how to work iPhones and iPads, and this causes them to look down constantly. Research has shown that going from a correct posture to leaning your head down (to look at your phone for example) can increase the stress on your neck by 40-50lbs! Instead of just saying “NO” to technology, try setting a time limit on their use and then encouraging them to go play. Or, if they are going to watch something, try to make it the television because at least their neck won’t be bent forward.

Untitled

Playtime and healthy eating habits are other very important parts of a child’s development both socially and physically. I speak very often to people about the importance of movement. Movement, of any kind, plays a vital role in staying healthier longer. We all know that children have more energy than they know what to do with. Put all that energy to good use. Get them active however you can. Whether it is playing outside, chasing them around the house, giving them toys that require more action, or just creating some type of game, encouraging your kids to be more active will have multiple benefits. Releasing that energy throughout the day will help them to eat better, sleep better, and learn/retain information better. Eating and drinking habits can help or hurt their energy level as well. One food my son loves is avocados. Benefits of avocados include being a great source of vitamin B to help fight infection, high in “healthy” fats that lower bad cholesterol levels, lots of calories and are low in sugar. Children have enough energy already…..they don’t need a lot of sugar to help them. Keeping them properly hydrated is important as well. On average, common drinks like juice boxes have 20-30 grams of sugar and soft drinks contain up to 40 grams per can. Encourage drinking water instead of soft drinks or juice boxes to keep their joints and spine healthier.

Raising children is never easy and there is no “exact” way to do it. All we can do as parents is stay aware of their activities and constantly encourage them in developing healthy habits early on in life. Setting boundaries, getting them up and moving, encouraging healthy eating habits, as well as periodic chiropractic adjustments can help to establish a strong foundation for a long and healthy life.

Staying Healthy During Football Season

by Justin Phillips, D.C.

It is now October and football season is in full swing. This is the time when so many people devote countless hours to sitting, watching, and hopefully cheering for their favorite teams to win. As much as we love the sport, games usually last for an average of 3 ½ to 4 hours. Sitting on the couch for multiple hours at a time for any reason can result in back pain, neck pain, and headaches among other issues. Luckily, unlike television, football gives us plenty of reasons to get up off the couch, cheer, move around and keep our backs healthy.

I have spoken with countless people who suffer from low back pain and sciatica that is directly related to their desk job. Sitting for hours at a desk is the same as sitting for hours on a couch. Often times, desk chairs are actually better for you than the couch because there is more support. Sitting back, slumping down in the couch is temporarily comfortable, but this position is actually terrible posture for your spine. Instead, try focusing on your posture by moving your hips forward and sitting up. Football is an exciting sport…….sit up, lean in and get into the game. When focusing on your posture, a good rule to remember is your ears over your shoulders, over your hips. This sitting posture instead of slouching back into the couch will put your spine in a healthier position and help to minimize stiffness.

Not only should you sit up, but stand up. Get excited and move around the room. Research has shown that someone who moves intermittently throughout the day actually has a less tendency to develop high blood pressure and heart disease than someone who sits for hours a day and then exercises afterwards. Staying active more consistently throughout the day will help to keep your metabolism going, blood circulating, and joints healthier. Your spine is basically made up of over 24 individual joints, and like any joint in the body, it requires movement to stay healthy. So get up while your team is doing well, or at least move around the house during breaks and commercials.

Also, the foods you are eating during the game are important. One of the most common causes of pain is chronic inflammation. Inflammation can be described as a condition when our tissues become irritated due to injury or infection. The symptoms of inflammation include pain, redness, swelling, stiffness, and loss of range of motion. A common side dish or snack during game-time is cheese dip. Dairy products not only contain sugar, but are usually #1 on any list of inflammatory foods. Instead of cheese dips, try a spinach-artichoke dip or even guacamole which are both anti-inflammatory snacks you can enjoy. Also, try drinking water instead of soft drinks that are loaded with corn syrup and sugar. Not only should you focus on anti-inflammatory foods, but keeping the body hydrated is extremely important.

So, whether Saturday or Sunday is your day for football, remember to focus on your posture and sitting up, get up and move around the room, and lean towards anti-inflammatory foods and water. These simple changes will keep you healthier throughout football season so you can keep cheering for your team louder and longer.

Sleepless in Chattanooga

by Codie Burns, Wellness Coordinator

At some point we all experience sleepless, restless nights.  Below are simple tips on ways you can break the habit to keep those nights few and far between.

773


 

Are your daytime habits causing your insomnia?

Do you find yourself in habit or have a bedtime routine that’s so ingrained you’re overlooking possible contributors to your insomnia?  Maybe it’s your daily morning Starbucks or binge watching your favorite Netflix episodes. Regardless of what it is…, it’s affecting your sleep.

Here are a few contributors to sleepless nights:

-Watching TV, playing games, using computer or tablet in bed

-Drinking caffeinated beverages (coffee, tea, soda) within 8 hours before bedtime

-Not exercising regularly

-Working irregular shifts or late nights


Adopt a new habit to help you sleep and stay asleep

Now that we have found some daily contributors to sleepless nights, how do we develop a habit to correct it and rest more peaceful?

It takes about 21 days to break a formed habit. So starting sooner is better than later. Adopt healthier choices into your day to day life such as exercising more frequent.

Exercise: A good workout during the day is the best cure for sleepless nights. I’m not saying you have to run out and join your closest gym. However, playing activity based games with your kids after work, trying out that yoga class you’ve been meaning to go to or even doing something as simple as yard work. Aiming for 30 mins of activity or 3, 10 minute sessions just to get your blood pumping will get the job done!

Forget Naps: Napping during the day time hours can make sleeping at night challenging. If you feel like you need a nap during the habit breaking phase, taking a 30 min nap before 3pm will help!

Avoid the Late Night Cravings: Try to avoid rich, heavy foods within 4 hours of bed. High in fat or processed foods can take a lot of extra work for your stomach to digest.

Cut out the Caffeine, Alcohol, and Nicotine: Drinking caffeinated beverages within 8 hours of bedtime inspire those sleepless nights to dominate your life.  While alcohol can help you feel tired, it interferes with your overall quality of sleep. Nicotine is a stimulant.

“When it comes to your health, we’ve got your back”

Do you have “Text Neck”?

by Codie Burns, Wellness Coordinator


Can you imagine carrying a 6 year old around your neck for 2-6 hours per day? Probably not, but we are doing just that when we glance down at our smartphones to send emails, play on social media and text.

graphic_102511

The human head weighs about a dozen pounds, but as you bend your neck the weight on the cervical spine increases. It can increase so much as to have 60 pounds of weight bearing down at a 60 degree angle. That’s the burden that we all face as we’re dependent on our tech devices.  

While it’s pretty close to impossible to give up these tech devices, there are ways of looking at these devices with a neutral spine and avoid the constant hunched over effect.

– Look down with your eyes instead of adjusting entire head downward

– Hold phone parallel to your eyes

– There’s an app for that- is true in this case. “Texting Neck”  app for android is available

– Incorporating Wall Angels into your day to day routine.

Over time “text neck” can lead to wear-and-tear on the spine and degeneration. Some common effects text neck can have if untreated are:

– Headaches  

– Disc Compression

– Numbness/Tingling of the upper extremities    

– Nerve Damage

– Flattening of the spinal curve     

– Loss of lung volume capacity

– Spinal degeneration     

– Muscle Damage

So if you’re asking yourself if you have “Text Neck” stop by Total Health Chiropractic today. We see and treat this condition daily. Our Doctors are trained to detect and remove these types of subluxations and allow your body to heal naturally. Give us a call today and let the natural healing begin!

(423) 517-7000