Will This Supplement Cure Your Cold?

There have been a lot of discussions since a study in the 1980s came out concerning the use of zinc as a supplement to prevent or even lessen the duration of the common cold. Since then, more studies have come out, but the results haven’t exactly been conclusive. 

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The cold is the most common illness in our country, most often caused by the rhinovirus. The highest number of colds occur in the winter time, which has caused a considerable amount of confusion in the general public. We’ve all been given advice as kids about the dangers of wet hair and cold weather, but neither of those things actually increases your chance to get a cold. The most likely reason why your chances of getting a cold increase in the winter time is because people are often forced to stay indoors. During the winter the heat is typically running which tends to dry out the air in your home, business, or school, which also dries out the nasal passages. When you combine these things together, it’s much easier to transmit viruses.

The Research

A study in 2013 looked at the available research up to that point on zinc and the common cold.  They found that taking zinc was associated with a shorter duration of cold symptoms (about 1 day) but it didn’t have any effect on the severity of the symptoms. Participants in the zinc group were less likely to develop a cold, miss school, or take prescription antibiotics. 

An article in TIME in 2017 looked at an article that claimed zinc lozenges might triple the rate of recovery for the common cold. As they point out in the article, the participants in the studies were given doses much higher than those recommended commonly by doctors.

Side-Effects

While there may be some benefits to taking zinc at the first signs of a cold, there are some side effects as well. The most common side-effect by far appears to be nausea. As someone who has taken zinc lozenges, I can attest to this. The other two forms people usually use to supplement zinc is through syrup and nasal sprays. The FDA actually put out a warning regarding the nasal sprays because there were more than 100 cases of loss of smell linked to the sprays. Taking large amounts of zinc can also lead to copper deficiencies in the body. 

Conclusions

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The research seems fairly strong that if you take zinc within 24 hours of the first indications of a cold, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll shorten the total duration. Unfortunately, there hasn’t been enough research on adequate dosing recommendations to confidently produce a consistent result across different populations of people. If you do a simple risk/reward analysis and decide it’s worth it to shorten your cold duration by about a day - I would recommend discussing adequate dosage recommendations with your family physician. Otherwise, waiting it out with some chicken soup and adequate rest might still be the best option.

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5 Ways to Naturally Boost Testosterone
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Despite the fact that both men and women produce testosterone, when we hear or read about it, it is in regards to men’s health. While testosterone is responsible for actions throughout the entire life cycle, it begins to decrease in production around the age of 30 in most men. 

In men, low testosterone often leads to:

  • Increased stomach fat
  • Development of breast tissue
  • Infertility
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Low muscle mass

In women, low testosterone results in:

  • Infertility
  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Decreased sex drive

There are a number of supplements on the market that make claims of being able to boost testosterone. Most of them are relatively ineffective and/or expensive. There are also a few strategies for taking a cold shower in the morning that have caught on with little to no evidence of effectiveness. However, there are a few ways that have been shown in the research to actually boost your testosterone levels naturally.

Lift Weights

There are a number of health benefits to general exercise and resistance training. For most men, there are many different forms of exercise that will increase testosterone in the short term. However, when we look at testosterone production over a long period of time, there is evidence that high-intensity workouts and workouts involving heavy weight lead to better testosterone production. In fact, endurance workouts will actually lead to a decrease in testosterone over a period of time. Along with boosts in testosterone, strength training has also been shown to improve cognitive function in a 2014 study.

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Eat Healthy Fats

When it comes to our diets, there is often times still a stigma associated with dietary fat. When we talk about increasing fat intake in your diet, we need to be very specific in that we’re talking about healthy fats like avocados, coconut oil, olive oil, butter and raw nuts like almonds. Studies show that testosterone will actually decrease when your diet consists of less than about 40% fat on a daily basis

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Healthy fats:

  • Avocados
  • Walnuts
  • Almonds
  • Olives
  • Flaxseed
  • Salmon
  • Fish Oil
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Eggs
  • Coconut Oil
  • Palm Oil

Optimize Vitamin-D

You can get vitamin D in three different ways: 

  • From your diet
  • From nutritional supplements
  • Through your skin. 

Considering that many of us don’t spend enough time out in the sun year-round, and we don’t always eat the way we’re supposed to, it’s not uncommon to be somewhat deficient in vitamin D. While I generally recommend trying to meet all your nutritional needs through the foods you eat, vitamin D is one case where I highly recommend using a supplement. The recommended amount of vitamin D is continually increased and the easiest way to meet those standards is by taking a liquid vitamin supplement. In a study of 200 participants, they found that vitamin D might increase testosterone levels in men. 

Eliminate Sugar

In the 1800’s, the average person consumed about 4-6 pounds of sugar per year. Currently, the USDA reports that the average American now consumes anywhere from 150 to 170 pounds of sugar in a year. The World Health Organization in their guidelines on sugar consumption points out that sugar is a major concern when it comes to the prevention of noncommunicable diseases, which are the leading cause of death.

When you consume sugar, insulin levels spike. When insulin spikes it leads to a decrease in testosterone. The benefits of eliminating sugar from your diet not only related to testosterone, but increased sugar can also lead to diabetes, and now, research is telling us it may be related to Alzheimer's disease, in what some researchers refer to as “Type III Diabetes.”

Lose Weight

I probably could have and should have listed this first, but how boring would that have been? In a study that looked at almost 900 middle-aged men with low testosterone, they found that after a 1-year lifestyle modification program of 150 minutes of exercise per week, along with reduced calorie diets, 50% of participants had increases in testosterone. One of the reasons for improvement has to do with the fact that obesity and type 2 diabetes are linked to low testosterone. 

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Again, there are a ton of products on the market that claim to boost testosterone, but the methods listed about are actually evidence-based. Aside from the recommendation to supplement with vitamin D, they also all involve simple modifications or elimination of habits, so they shouldn’t break the bank.

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Congratulations, You Have Two Brains!
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You might be surprised to learn that on average, people have 10-100 times more microorganisms in their bowels than cells in their body. The total weight of the gut microbes are roughly equivalent to the weight of the human brain. What’s more interesting is the fact that these microbes play major role in how you think, feel and function throughout the day.

Physicians in the early 1900s became interested with the effect gut microbes had on the health of the individual. Doctors even started trying to influence the intestinal microbiota with the introduction of specific bacteria. Other physicians opted to simply remove portions of the colon in sick patients. In either case, the medical community has a long-held appreciation for the influence intestinal microbes have on conditions such as fatigue, gastrointestinal issues and neuroses. Current research into the gut-brain axis is giving us a better understanding as to why the intestinal microbiota can have such a profound effect on our minds and bodies. (Gut Pathogens)

THE GUT-BRAIN AXIS

The gut-brain axis is the term we give to the communication between the enteric nervous system and the central nervous system. Other names used to refer to the enteric nervous system are the “second brain” or the “gut-brain." The “gut-brain” contains over 100 million neurons - more neurons than are present in the spinal cord. The enteric nervous system and the central nervous system are in constant communication with each other, which can affect not only gastrointestinal function, but our emotions and thinking. To understand the communication, we need to talk about one of the most important nerves in your body.

VAGUS, NOT VEGAS

Your nervous system is essentially the electrical wiring for your body. Think of it as a communication network, or the body’s internal operating system. The main nerve responsible for communication between the central nervous system and enteric nervous system is the vagus nerve. The vagus nerve originates at the brainstem and is used by the central nervous system to communicate with the vocal cords, heart, lungs and the digestive tract. (Vagus) The Vagus nerve is the main highway for communication between the brain and your gut. However, the information travels in both directions, and a majority (80-90%) of the fibers are actually traveling from the gut back up to the brain. (Bidirectional) Although the brain uses the vagus nerve to control gastrointestinal function, the gut-brain is so well-developed and complex that even if the vagus nerve is severed, gastrointestinal functions will still be carried out. The vagus nerve is involved in the communication of the microbes in the gut and the brain.

BACK TO BACTERIA

There are trillions of microbes in the gut, the majority of which are bacteria. Microbiota in your gut produce 50% of your body’s dopamine and around 90% of serotonin. These are the neurotransmitters associated with feelings of well-being. There is evidence that, for their own survival, gut microbiota can even influence your eating behaviors. In studies involving germ-free animals, researchers found that the absence of gut microbiota led to neuromuscular abnormalities. In other studies, mice were shown to behave less anxiously and have higher levels of GABA when fed probiotics. (Anxiety) Researchers have shown that administering beneficial microbes can reduce inflammation and anxiety in humans (Inflammation)

While it’s clear that the gut microbiota can influence behavior and health, and that your diet can influence your gut microbiota, we still don’t fully understand how to control the system effectively. While the research into probiotic supplementation is promising, don’t rush to immediately load up on supplements without doing your research. There’s also no substitute for cleaning up your diet.

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3 Supplements to Combat Depression Naturally
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Depression is more than the normal feelings of sadness or grief that we all deal with from time to time. Depression is the most common mental disorder in the United States. (Depression among adults) About 7% of the population in the United States has had at least one depressive episode, with depression affecting women twice as much as men.

A diagnosis of depression is made when symptoms persist for at least two weeks. Symptoms include:

  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Irritability
  • Decreased energy
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in normal activities
  • Appetite or weight changes
  • Aches, cramps, headaches, digestive problems without a clear cause
  • Thoughts of suicide

Depression most commonly presents in adulthood but has been on the rise in younger populations. From 2005-2015 depression rose significantly among Americans age 12 and older from 6.6% to 7.3% (Science Daily)

While depression can leave people feeling absolutely hopeless, it’s important to understand that even the severe cases can be treated. Treatment normally begins with medications. There are many medications on the market that act according to different mechanisms. The purpose of this article is not to break down the various medications or discuss the pros and cons, but to discuss some natural supplements on the market that have been shown to improve symptoms of depression.

There are 3 supplements I’m going to focus on, but there are more worth investigating further. The five supplements are:

  • Omega-3 Fish Oil
  • 5-HTP
  • L-Theanine

Omega-3 Fish Oil

The two main types of Omega-3 fatty acids are long-chain and short-chain. Long-chain omega-3 fatty acids are EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). These acids are present in high amounts in fish and shellfish. ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) is a short-chain omega-3 found in plants like flaxseed. To get the same health benefits as EPA and DHA you would have to consume a tremendous amount of ALA (WebMD).

People with depression may have lower levels of DHA and EPA than the average person. There are studies that suggest fish oil supplements may improve depression symptoms. One thought is that a reduction in inflammation resulting from omega-3 supplementation is what leads to improvement in depression symptoms (Omega 3)

The best source of omega-3 comes from fatty fish like salmon, sardines and tuna. Americans face two problems - the quality of the fish that makes it to the plate, even in high-end restaurants is often subpar (NY Times), and you need to eat A LOT of fish to get the health benefits of EPA and DHA. 

The best way for most people to get the appropriate amount of Omega-3 is through fish oil supplementation. The following video discusses some other benefits of taking fish oil.

5-HTP

This is one of my favorite supplements that few people know about. 5-HTP has been used for quite some time as an appetite suppressant, and for good reason, it’s very effective. 5-HTP is a chemical that the body naturally produces from the tryptophan we take in from our diet. After tryptophan is converted into 5-HTP, it is then converted into serotonin. Most of you are aware that serotonin is a neurotransmitter associated with positive mood and sleep (UMM)

Studies indicate that 5-HTP may actually work as well as antidepressant drugs for patients with mild-moderate depression. 5-HTP increases the levels of serotonin in the brain. By doing so, it has a similar effect as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) which limit reabsorption of serotonin. Patients who suffer from insomnia, fibromyalgia, and migraines have also shown improvement with 5-HTP.

L-Theanine

L-Theanine is a non-essential amino acid that can be extracted from green tea. In fact, the calming effects of L-theanine are thought to counteract the otherwise stimulant effect of the caffeine in green tea. L-Theanine leads to an increased production of GABA which leads to an increase in levels of dopamine in the brain. This change results in calm feeling. Unlike benzodiazepines which are taken for anxiety, L-theanine typically doesn’t cause drowsiness or impaired concentration (Psychology Today)

In a study published in 2008, EEG studies were performed on patients supplementing with L-theanine and compared with a control group that took a placebo. In the group that took L-theanine, there was an increase in alpha brain wave activity. The results of the study indicated that L-theanine has a signifycant effect on the mental alertness (Theanine)

For people who suffer from depression, it can often be a difficult and frustrating journey to find a solution. Often times people are further troubled by the side-effects of the medications they begin taking. The three supplements mentioned above have shown promise in the natural treatment of depression. If you’re interested in pursuing a more natural route, I would recommend discussing all your alternatives with your doctor. 

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Why Are Certain Muscles Constantly Tight?

The next time you're at the gym, if you pay close attention, you might notice that the same people are constantly working on the same muscle groups. Why is that? In order to really understand why a muscle gets “tight,” we need to take a small step back and look at the anatomy and physiology of how a muscle works.

The main job of the muscles in your body is movement (Obvious, I know). As a muscle contracts/shortens/tightens, it moves a skeletal structure from one position to another.

The Receptor System

The second job of muscles is one that people might be aware of but usually don’t understand completely. The second function of muscles is to provide your brain with feedback regarding your position sense (posture) and balance. Muscles and joints of the body have stretch receptors and mechanoreceptors. These are similar to sensors throughout an automobile that provide the main computer with information about tire pressure, oil life, and engine temperature. Your brain takes the information it receives from these receptors and uses it to make changes to the muscles throughout the body to keep you upright and balanced.

What happens when there’s a problem with this receptor system?

Imagine what would happen if there was a problem with one of the sensors in your car. Likewise, what would happen if there were issues with the internal electrical wiring? You might start to get feedback about problems that aren’t really there. As a result, you might start to make changes to the car based on that information, that causes further problems.

The spinal bones in the top part of the neck are very freely moveable and can become very unstable. When bones in the upper part of the spine shift out of place, it causes the head to tilt or rotate to one side, and stay locked in that position. We all have a built-in reflex called the “righting reflex” where our body will do whatever it can to keep our eyes level with the horizon. When the head and necked are locked in a tilted or rotated position, the rest of the body will begin to turn, twist, and rotate until the eyes are level again.

Over time, this leads to a number of structural changes throughout the body. For some, it will cause the head to shift forward relative to the chest. For others, it might cause uneven shoulders, scoliotic curves in the spine, or changes in the alignment of the pelvis, causing it to rotate forward or backward, or causing one side to be higher than the other. These changes in the underlying structure eventually develop into the tight muscles we commonly see in the upper part of the shoulders, the mid back, hamstrings, and quads. In most cases, muscle spasm, pain, pinched nerves and postural changes are what we call secondary conditions.

Circling Back

Sometimes muscles tighten up due to an aggressive workout or activity where the muscles were challenged more than usual. In that case, using a foam roller or lacrosse ball might be an effective way of managing the spasm. In other cases where people find themselves trying to massage the same area over and over, the problem might actually be caused by a shift in the underlying spinal structure. In that case, the muscles are tight because the brain is being fed bad information and thus is sending bad information back out to the muscles causing them to remain tight or contracted. No amount of foam rolling or massage is going to solve the problem because it’s not a problem with the muscle, but a problem with the internal wiring of the body.

Structural chiropractors look at the alignment of each region of the spine, closely measuring and comparing a patient’s spine to what we know to be normal. After detecting abnormal shifts, a plan of care is designed specific to the patient’s findings. By correcting the underlying structure and directing the spine back to normal, the receptors and muscles along the spine begin functioning the way they’re supposed to. When the structure is back to normal, it changes the signals being sent to the brain, which alters the signals traveling from the brain to the muscles. In this way, a muscle spasm can be corrected without having to poke and prod at the muscle, because the brain is no longer “telling” the muscle to stay contracted. Patients often find that after the underlying structure is corrected, their bodies are much more responsive when they do need foam rollers or massage therapy.

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3 Essential Supplements for a Healthy Brain

Given the nature of the neurostructural corrective care we provide, we’re very concerned with nervous system health beyond what we do in the walls of our office. 

One area we pay special attention to is the role of nutrition and supplementation in optimizing nervous system function.

There are three supplements we’ve found, both by digging through research and working directly with patients, that are essential for a healthy brain. 

Curcumin

If you’re actively involved in a health and wellness community, you’ve probably heard some mention made of the various health benefits of turmeric. It’s true that the research has shown that the substances in turmeric can help reduce inflammation, block the growth of certain kinds of tumors, protect against skin diseases, stomach ulcers, Alzheimer's disease, and even stabilize colorectal cancers unresponsive to other treatment methods.

The substance in turmeric responsible for its health benefits is called curcumin. Curcumin is a powerful antioxidant. 

While it would be great to simply increase the amount of turmeric you consume in your diet and still get the benefits of curcumin, the reality is it’s difficult for curcumin to make it to the bloodstream. The curcumin supplements we recommend to our patients use curcumin complexed with phosphatidylcholine which results in absorption that is 29 times higher than traditional curcumin mixtures. 

Omega-3 Fish Oil

If you’ve been an avid reader of our newsletter, you’ve heard me talk about the health benefits of Omega-3 fish oil before. The primary fats in fish oil that are important in regards to brain health are EPA and DHA. 

DHA is incredibly important for the development of the nervous system in little ones. Around the age 5, children begin having a decreased need for DHA. Increasing the amount of EPA around this time can help with focus and academic performance.

EPA is important for adults, unfortunately, the availability of EPA in our diets has been significantly reduced for a number of reasons. One of the biggest issues is that the food that makes it to the dinner plate, especially fish, is much different than it was a hundred years ago. 

Low levels of EPA are correlated with depression, dyslexia, joint and bone problems, neurodegenerative diseases and heart problems. EPA can help repair damaged nerves as well, which relates directly to the work we do. 

If you begin taking a fish oil, I would encourage you not to buy whatever’s cheapest. Make sure the brand that you choose is molecularly distilled, which reduces the number of contaminants and contains a higher amount of EPA and DHA.

Probiotics

While you’ve probably heard of probiotics, you may not know what they are or why they can be so beneficial. There is constantly new research being put out on the gut-brain axis. The latest research is showing that the bacteria in the human gut can actually affect the other systems in the body. Researchers have been working with models of inflammation believed to be linked to depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder.

Bacteria have been shown to limit inflammatory cytokine production, limit malabsorption of carbohydrates, have an influence on neurotransmitter production, protect the intestinal barrier, limit gastric and intestinal pathogens and also have analgesic properties.

Like the other supplements, it’s always important to look for a brand that is reputable. Potency counts of 50 billion or higher are what you should aim for. It’s also good to look for a supplement that has high diversity or multiple strains of good bacteria.

These 5 Strategies Can Help Prevent Colic

All babies cry. Their communication options are pretty limited, so they have to do something to communicate their needs. However, when the crying begins suddenly and for no apparent reason, that's different.

Colic isn't a disease, rather a series of observable behaviors such as abdominal distension, cold feet, clenched hands, drawn up legs, irritability and excessive crying. It's important for parents, especially new parents, to understand that it's not your fault. Most babies go through a period of time where they cry more than others. In many cases, it should subside after the baby is 3-4 months old.

There are some steps you can take to limit and possibly prevent episodes. Below are 5 steps that have shown to be beneficial.

  1. Small, frequent meals.

  2. Probiotics that contain a live strain of Bifidobacterium lactis.

  3. The breastfeeding mother should avoid foods that are high in sulfur and promote gas production like: broccoli, turnips, kale, brussel sprouts, cabbage, onion and cauliflower.

  4. Turn lights off and keep your surroundings quiet. Excessive stimulation can make the situation worse.

  5. Screen for food intolerances, allergies and sensitivities.

We regularly see newborns in our office. From a NeuroStructural standpoint, we first evaluate the spine, muscle tone and reflexes. After observing the baby over a few visits and paying attention to patterns of behavior, we determine the best course of action. In some cases that might mean very gentle corrections applied to the joints and muscles along the spine. In the case of colic, that might also include trigger point release work around the diaphragm.

The bones in the top part of the spine protect one of the most important areas of the nervous system called the brain-stem. This area is responsible for controlling the automatic nervous system, which regulates the digestive tract. For this reason, the first area we check on a newborn is the first bone in the neck to make sure it's moving properly and there's no pressure on the brain-stem.

Vertigo - A Problem in the Neck?

Dizziness and vertigo can affect up to 40% of individuals over the age of 40. Often times this can be a debilitating disorder that causes people to miss work, family events, and prevents them from operating motor vehicles. 

While most people relate vertigo to an inner ear disorder, there are many cases where the problem actually originates from the spine, or more specifically, the top part of the neck. 

The joints and muscles in your neck play a huge role when it comes to controlling your overall balance. The muscles and joints in the top part of the spine where the neck meets the skull, are very small and sensitive to changes in movement. If there is a shift in the bony structure of this region it can cause individuals to experience dizziness and vertigo. It can also cause people to feel unbalanced when they’re working out at the gym or playing with their kids.

Vertigo that is caused by structural shifts in the neck is called cervicogenic vertigo. The top two bones of your spine are different from every other spinal bone because they are held in place with muscles and ligaments. The other spinal bones are locked together by multiple joints. If the bones in the neck begin to shift out of place, it can lead to muscle spasm, pinched nerves, and decreased blood flow to the balance centers of the brain. This results in a form of vertigo that is made worse with even small movements of the head and neck region.

The good news is, this problem is often times quite easy to correct. Structural Chiropractors are trained to perform an in-depth analysis of the spine, looking for structural shifts that lead to secondary conditions like vertigo, migraines, neck pain, pinched nerves, weakness, and fatigue. Structural Chiropractors then use the findings from the exam to create a customized plan of care that involves very gentle and specific corrections to the spine, in-office rehabilitation, customized home exercises, ergonomic recommendations, and maintenance strategies to keep you well. 

BIRTH TRAUMA AND STRUCTURAL CHIROPRACTIC

Science is now beginning to investigate a health issue that chiropractors have been concerned about for many years - birth trauma. For decades, chiropractors have observed potential dangers for newborns as a result of some of the modern day approaches to childbirth. Birth is a natural process and is an amazing life-changing family event. However, even with common delivery procedures that appear to go as planned, many potential problems can arise. 

In some cases, the delivery process results in a direct birth trauma. These traumas may include caput succedaneum, a condition marked by scalp swelling, cephalohematoma, an accumulation of blood below the baby’s periosteum, the protective membrane that covers an infant’s skull, bruising and broken bones, subconjunctival hemorrhage, which is bleeding that occurs when small blood vessels in the baby’s eyes break, Bell’s palsy, brachial plexus injury, oxygen deprivation, and fractures - most commonly the collar bone. 

The most prevalent injury chiropractors have seen when it comes to the birth process is the creation of misalignments, or a structural shift, in the baby’s spine. Numerous research articles have displayed scientific documentation of damage that occurs to the nervous system in the neck of newborns during the common birth process. This damage ranges from mild misalignments in the upper neck to more serious issues involving spinal cord damage and central nervous system problems. How can these injuries occur? According to Abraham Towbin, MD, from Harvard Medical School and the Department of Pathology, presented research at the Eighteenth Annual Meeting of the American Academy For Cerebral Palsy, in his research he found that "the birth process, even under optimal conditions, is potentially a traumatic, crippling event for the fetus.” “Spinal cord and brain stem injuries occur often during the process of birth but frequently escape diagnosis." Dr. Towbin continues, "death may occur during delivery or, with respiratory function depressed, a short period after birth. Infants who survive the initial effects, may be left with severe nervous system defects."” He concludes by addressing the clinical significance of spinal cord and brain stem injury at birth, noting that such damage is often latent and undiagnosed. 

In one particular study, 1,250 babies were examined five days after birth; 211 of them suffered from vomiting, hyperactivity and sleeplessness. Structural shifts, or misalignments, were found in 95% of these babies. Although the researchers in this study were medical doctors, they recognized the power of chiropractic care and these babies were given the spinal care they needed. The authors reported that the spinal adjustment “frequently resulted in immediate quieting, cessation of crying, muscular relaxation and sleepiness.” The authors noted that an unhealthy spine causes “many clinical features from central motor impairment to lower immune function. This case focuses on an 18-month-old boy suffering from tonsillitis, frequent enteritis, therapy-resistant conjunctivitis, frequent colds, earache and increasing sleeping problems. He received a chiropractic spinal adjustment. The child demanded to be put to bed and slept peacefully until morning. His health returned to normal. 

While the birth process is becoming more and more of an intervening procedure, rather than a natural process, we are seeing an increase in birth trauma. There is a time and place for medical intervention, however sometimes there can be consequences. For this reason, the need for infant chiropractic care is now more important than ever. For over 100 years, chiropractors have been utilizing specific and gentle adjusting procedures to analyze, detect and correct any structural shifts in the spine, and monitor the stability once care is given. There are literally thousands of cases of children responding to chiropractic care with conditions such as ear infections, immune system dysfunction, seizures, colic, torticollis, reflux, asthma, scoliosis, and many others. 

According to the late chiropractic pediatric specialist Larry Webster, D.C., there are six times in a baby’s first year of life when spinal examinations are especially important:

● After the birth process.
● When the baby starts to hold his/her head up.
● When the baby sits up.
● When the baby starts to crawl.
● When the baby starts to stand.
● When the baby starts to walk.

A structural evaluation of the spine is a very gentle procedure. After working with a large number of pediatric patients, our staff is committed to creating a comfortable environment and experience for both parents and baby. Our goal is to make sure the baby’s spine is free from any structural displacements that can limit the proper function and development of nervous system. When it comes to spinal problems, early detection is key when it comes to preventing more complicated issues down the road.

RAINY DAY/LAZY DAY WORKOUT

We’ve all had those days where simply traveling to the gym seems like in insurmountable task. Whether your body is telling you to take a day off, or you’re just having a lazy day - it doesn’t have to be a complete loss. I’ve put together a very simple bodyweight workout that can be done from the comfort of your living room.

If you really push yourself, a workout like this will not only challenge all muscle groups and increase your heart rate, but it will also burn a ton of calories. The only equipment you will need is a 1-gallon milk jug, or something heavy enough that it will challenge your muscles after performing ten repetitions. 

This circuit is designed to be performed 3 times through, without any rest between exercises or rounds. If three times is too challenging, perform is once or twice and try to get better on your next attempt. Similarly, if three times is too easy, feel free to complete the circuit as many times as you can to really challenge yourself. 

THE WARM-UP

One of the most important things before a workout is making sure you always warm-up. I’m not talking about performing static stretches of muscles (the pros and cons of which will be discussed in a different issue), I mean warming up the entire body by either running in place, jumping rope, or performing some light sets of push-ups and/or squats. Spend a few minutes getting your heart rate elevated and the blood flowing to your muscles before any workout. 

THE WORKOUT

After you’ve performed your warm-up exercises, the actual routine is as follows:

  •     10 Push-ups
  •     25 Bodyweight Squats
  •     10 Dumbbell rows (w/ milk jug or dumbbell)
  •     20 Walking lunges
  •     30 Second plank
  •     50 Jumping jacks

The exercises should be performed back to back without any rest. For the average person, the goal should be three rounds. As always, proper form, especially during the squats and lunges is an absolute must. As long as your form is good, speed is going to determine how challenging this workout is. Obviously the faster you move through each exercise, the more challenging it’s going to be. With that said, if you think 3 rounds will be too much for you, but you still want a long workout, simply slow down the movements and concentrate on good form an even pacing. 

WHO'S THIS WORKOUT FOR?

In short, this can be beneficial for everyone. Whether you’re new to working out, or you hit the gym multiple times a day, the modifications to this workout are pretty endless if you’re looking to scale up or scale down. In the coming weeks, we will be discussing an advanced bodyweight workout, so keep an eye out.

LOOKING FOR HELP?

If you read through the exercises listed above, and you have questions about how to perform each of the movements, feel free to e-mail us and we’d be glad to help. If you want, we can also get you in touch with a fitness professional we’ve partnered with. I know for a lot of people, the idea of walking into a new gym or calling up a personal trainer can be intimidating. We also realize that some gyms are simply looking to give prospective clients the hard sell. For that reason, we work only with gyms and trainers who are dedicated to proper form and have a strong desire to help clients reach their personal best. 

SHARE YOUR RESULTS!

After you’ve completed 3 rounds, let us know your best time on our Facebook page. We look forward to hearing from everyone!

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