After Holiday Weight Gain Blues

22 01 2019

Travel and Food Go Together – Pacing oneself is the challenge.

Last updated 22 Jan 19, by Marc Woodard

Another year has gone by with all the Holiday decor and cheer with it. I understand some of you had a tough time with the food choices and amount that you consumed; and last year’s weight loss resolution didn’t work out so well.

With that being said, should I dare say some of you are not only bummed out after you stepped on the scale, you have the weight gain blues.

There are many reasons weight gain occurs. I would never tell you I know exactly what you are going through. However I do know, out-of-control weight gain is often attached to an emotional lifestyle change. And those changes often trigger over consumption of food and drink – especially during and after the Holiday season, or vacations. And this can lead to acute-to-chronic depression for many.

There is also an illness-disease relationship associated with unhealthy body weight – especially once we become obese. At this point the mind-body becomes susceptible to greater health risk. For example, diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), congenital heart disease, fibromyalgia-phantom pain, etc. A daily habit of over eating may also increase other bad habits, i.e., smoking, drinking, illicit drug or unnecessary pharmaceutical use.

In general, stressful life events cannot be avoided. But can be stress-minimized through understanding the environmental triggers causing them. Regardless of season, or any day for that matter… you must learn how to target and identify the physical, mental and/or social triggers causing the emotional stress keeping you overweight and unfit and do something about it.

Unfortunately for some – the over weight condition may be the result of a genetic or metabolic factor, Which may have less to do with lifestyle habits and behavior – but more to do with an inefficient calorie burning furnace. Any long-term weight gain that threatens health should seek medical attention immediately from a physician.

Recreational Activity Does a Body Good.

Below I’ve listed a few behavioral habit forming relationships that can be changed before and after any holiday season or vacation to help reduce body fat weight gain and achieve the weight loss goal.

8 Lifestyle Changes You can Make to Achieve Your New Years Resolution Weight Loss Goal.

  1. Holiday Cheer Weight Gain – What can I say about Holiday Cheer that I haven’t mentioned in my previous writings.  Have a Holiday battle meal plan before you set down at the table.  Read the following article, “10 Step Basic Weight Loss Tips.”
  2.  Last Year’s Resolution to Lose Weight Failed – You know why you failed your weight loss program from previous years. You did not resolve, or change your eating, drinking, or exercise habits. To do so is still too painful for whatever the reason. Until you resolve and/or get serious about your weight loss goal, or seek professional help, regardless of who provides you weight loss tips, services or program… you’ll likely continue to struggle with body weight.
  3.  Pain factor – All pain is directly related to illness, disease and/or injury. And with pain comes more sedentary habits. It is for this reason, it is more important than ever you work with your primary physician and pain management specialists to find treatment and activity that’s right for you. If you have mental and physical pain that’s not been diagnosed – seek advisement and referrals from your primary care physician.
  4.  Stressful life events cause excess calorie consumption– For many the habit of eating more calories than needed may come from everyday stresses caused by work or home environment, or bad relationship with spouse, friend or family member. Or the stress could be caused by some other non-diagnosed physical and mental pain from childhood. Stress events can culminate and increase a depression mood that causes one to eat more in an attempt to feel better. Once you target the cause of your stress induced bad habit and/or behavior and remove it… it’s more likely you’ll succeed in a safe weight program over a set period of time.
  5.  Carry the party into New Year – Some carry the end of year festivities into the new year. This behavior can last for months, or the entire year. This continued habit will not help you lose weight or remove the depression umbrella. “First and foremost, you must understand this is occurring and must break this unhealthy habit.” As one ages and the habit continues – health risk increases.
  6.  Fast foods after the Holiday’s. Too many Americans consume fast foods especially during the Holidays. Here lies a crux for much of the American obesity problem. During this time of year there is a huge spike in fast foods and alcohol sales. Yes, business booms almost in every sector of the economy. Fast foods are convenient, chemically addictive and bad for health in the long run. I know you’re thinking, what if I just give up the fast food places and eat out at restaurants? While this is a better concept, you don’t know how much of those meals are processed with unhealthy garbage causing your weight gain. Also when you eat out – most tend to eat more. Instead develop a healthy whole foods shopping habit and limit yourself to 1 fast food meal a week. I highly recommend you read, “Restaurant and Grocery Foods Healthy?
  7.  Love of Baking – I know, some of you carry your new found baking habits into the new year. Although there is nothing wrong with cooking your own food, the pitfall is when you love everything you bake just a little too much. I know the kids love your home made cookies, cakes and pies. Remember moderation with deserts. Too much sugar, fat and salt is not good for anyone, even children with fast metabolisms. If you’re having a tough time changing up your baking habit – try becoming a little more creative by offering different types of deserts… fresh fruits, jello, pudding, etc. Mix it up and break away from the continuous high fat baking habit.
  8.  Empty Nester’s Bake for an Army – Regardless of season, there are many who continue to cook for an entire family after the children have left home. There are many things tied into this habit. This is a tough habit to change – especially if the spouse demands traditional family recipes. If you continue to cook this way, you’ll not reduce food portions – it will be more challenging to meet your weight loss goal.

Once you target the cause of your weight gain nemesis and make healthier lifestyle choices that include daily exercise activities – your fitness levels and health will improve dramatically, while achieving your weight loss resolution once and for all.

Good health to you and your family!

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET2019 Copyright.  All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing @: http://www.mirrorathlete.com,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





How did They Live Past 116

22 12 2018

Healthy relationships contribute to long life spans

Updated:  22 December 2018

How do average people live well past 100 years of age and significantly longer with a  95 year average lifespan? Does it have anything to do with genetics, environment, habit, diet, exercise or something more or absent thereof?

First let’s examine some of the longest living centurion biographies on record. And after reviewing these biographies, we’ll connect the dots to make a correlation to their longevity lifestyle secrets.

During the 19th – late 20th Century – interviews before death relevant to  lifestyle and culture to include biography and genealogy was not captured through a scientific or epidemiological process. Therefor I’ll render an opinion based on assumptions extracted from the limited amount of biographical data of deceased subjects; and references at the end of the article.

Super Centenarian – Deceased Subjects of Observation,

Jeanne Calment (21 February 1875 – 4 August 1997) she lived 122 years, 164 days, place of residence Arles, France.   Jeanne Louise Calment surpassed previous Guinness Book of Record holders as the longest living confirmed human.  It was said Jeanne smoked more than 2 cigarettes per day and after an operation in 1994 she weighed 99 pounds where she became dependent on a wheelchair for mobility.  She attributed her long life and youthful appearance to olive oil which she used religiously in her food and on her skin. Included within her diet she drank port wine and consumed ~2lbs of chocolate weekly.  In total she outlived 329 undisputedly-verified super centenarians

Sarah Knauss-Clark (24 September 1880 – 30 December 1999) she lived 119 years, 97 days, place of residence, Hollywood and Allentown, Pennsylvania.  Sarah had a career as an insurance office manager and upon her marriage to Abraham Lincoln Knauss (December 19, 1878 – March 1, 1965) she spent her time as a home maker and was a skilled seamstress. Mrs.  Knauss was known as an extraordinary woman that pushed the envelope of longevity.  It was said, the reason for her longevity stemmed from the fact she was a very tranquil person and nothing fazed her. Also it is known that she enjoyed life because she had her health and could do what she wanted. Her interests and foods included: viewing golf tournaments, needlepoint and nibbling on chocolate turtles, cashews and potato chips. Her only child Kathryn Knauss Sullivan (November 17, 1903 – January 21, 2005) lived to be 101 and was 96 at the time of her mother’s death.

Lucy Hannah (16 July 1875 – 21 March 1993) she lived 117 years, 248 days, place of residence Born in Linden, Alabama and died in Detroit.  She moved in the great migration to escape the racial tensions that were prominent of the times in the Deep South.  Her parents survived slavery for which it is noted they were whipped daily until their freedom and thereafter suffered from trauma as a result of the physical and mental scars. Lucy married John Hannah in 1901 and had 8 children together. Two of her children were still living at the time of her death. The two sisters lived to be 100 years of age. And Hannah’s mother lived to the age of 99.

Marie-Louise Meileur (29 August 1880 – 16 April 1998) She lived 117 years, 230 days, place of residence Kamouraska, Quebec, Canada. It is known that Marie was married twice and between the two marriages had 4 children with first husband Etienne Leclerc from 1900 and where he died in 1911.  And then the super centenarian had six other children through her second marriage with Hector Meileur whom she married in 1915 until his death in 1972.  She had 85 grandchildren, 80 great-grandchildren and 57 great-great- grandchildren and 4 (3 x great grandchildren). Marie’s death was the result of a blood clot.

Maria Capovilla (14 September 1889 – 27 August 2006) She lived 116 years, 347 days and was recognized by Guinness World Records during her reign as the world’s oldest living person ever in South America and the southern hemisphere in Guayaquil. Ecuador. It is also interesting to note she is also the oldest human that had a life span living within three centuries. Born as Maria Esther Heredia Lecaro; she married a military officer, Antonio Capovill after his first wife died.  They had five children together, three (Hilda, 81, Irma, 80 and Anibal 78) of which were at Maria’s side prior to death.  Antonio passed in 1949.  She had 12 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and 2 great, great grandchildren.  She enjoyed watching TV, reading and walked without the assistance of a cane, but helped by an aide prior to the day of her passing. She also never smoked or drank hard liquor.

Although home bound for the last two years of life, she shared her home with eldest daughter Hilda and son-in-law. In an interview her traditional view of men and women stated her dislike, about how women today are permitted to court men, rather than men courting women.

During 2006 near time of death Maria’s health took a turn for the worse.  She could no longer read, she nearly stopped talking and no longer could walk without the assistance of two people. Just prior to her death she was able to sit comfortably in her chair and fan herself. She died just 18 days before her 117th birthday. Cause of death Pneumonia.

Tane Ikai (18 January 1879 – 12 July 1995) She lived 116 years, 175 days, place of birth Kansei, Japan.  She is the only fully verified person within Asia to reach 116 years of age. She married at the age of 20 had 3 sons and one daughter. At the age of 38 she left her husband. At the age of 89 she entered a nursing home. At the age of 109 she had a stroke where she remained bed ridden in a hospital until her death.  Cause of death kidney failure.

Besse Cooper (26 August 1896 – 4 December 2012) 116 years and surpassing Elizabeth Bolden’s 116 years, 118 days. Besse Berry Brown-Cooper of Sullivan County, Tennessee was married to Luther Cooper and had 4 children and widowed after 39 years of marriage. Luther was 68 at the time of his death. Mrs. Cooper lived on her farm and moved into a nursing facility at the age of 105. Recently, Cooper reached her 116th birthday in August 2012, the second-oldest verified person from Tennessee and surpassing Elizabeth Bolden who died in December 2006, at the age of 116 years and 118 days. When asked what the secret to her super centurion lifespan, she stated, “minding my own business” working outdoors and avoiding most junk foods and ate lots of vegetables.  Occupation: retired teacher.   Cause of Death: Respiratory Failure.

Elizabeth Bolden (15 August 1890 – 11 December 2006) She lived 116 Years, 118 days and at the time of her death recognized by Guinness as the oldest living person.  She was born in Somerville, Tennessee, the daughter of freed slaves.  She had 7 children, only two of which were alive at the time of her death (Esther, 89 and Mamie 86). Elizabeth had 40 grandchildren, 75 great-grandchildren, 150 great-great grandchildren and 220 (3 x great grandchildren) and an amazing 75 (4 x great grandchildren). And in her final days of life she resided within a Memphis Tennessee nursing facility.  Elizabeth also lived a life spanning within three centuries.

Maggie Barnes (6 March 1882 – 19 January 1998) She lived 115 years, 319 days, place of residence, Johnston County, North Carolina.  She was born to a slave and married a tenant farmer. Eleven of her children preceded her in death, while 4 of her other children survived her after death. Mrs. Barnes died of a complication from a minor foot infection.

Christian Mortensen (16 August 1882 – 25 April 1998) He lived 115 years, 252 days, last place of residence San Rafael, California. Born in a village near the city of Skanderborg, Denmark, he then settled in Chicago and worked various trades: tailor, milkman, and restaurateur and factory worker. He was married 10 years, had no children and never remarried. Retiring near Galveston Bay, Texas; 28 years later it was claimed at the age of 96 he rode his bike to the Aldersly Retirement Community in San Rafael where he stayed until his death. He’s the oldest living male to date.

When asked for advice on his long life; he stated, “stay away from alcohol; drink lots of water, keep a positive attitude, keep good friends and singing” will help you live a long time. His diet preferences were mainly a vegetarian diet and he also drank a lot of boiled water. He smoked cigars believing if in moderation, it was not unhealthy.

In order to find out how these 10 individuals lived so long – we’ll compare environment, lifestyle, diet, behaviors and habits with the online data available. In this way we may understand what common denominators may have contributed to their long life spans.

Centenarian interview statements revealed prior to death [in bold – represents a healthy habit or behavior of moderation], were claimed by each individual to contribute to their long lives spans.

Centurion Replies,

Use olive oil religiously in foods

Port “Red” Wine

Chocolate

Cashews

Potato chips

Drink lots of water

Mainly vegetarian

Drink boiled water

Junk foods

Hard Liquor

Rub olive oil on skin

Smoke Cigarettes and/or Cigars

Alcohol

Red wine

Very tranquil person

Mind my own business, stress reduction

Keep a positive attitude and sense of humor

Perceived overall Good health

Needlepoint

Ability to be mobile

Singing

Watch TV

Listen to Radio

Watch Sports

Walking-mobility

Communication

Socialization

Working Outdoors

Good Family and friend relationships

Social gatherings

One has purpose in life

Interactive life

High Cancer Statisic- Environment (Reference article #11, 12, 13, 14)

California, Florida, Texas and New York (High Cancer States)

Centurions lived most of their life – on average in low cancer per Capita States

Cause of death,

Mobility loss

Blood clot

Pneumonia

Kidney Failure

Infection

No cause listed, “respiratory failure”

Conclusion,

All but one of ten centenarians lived in a statistically low cancer state(s) [excluding those that lived outside of the United States]. And all but one of the 10 was male. Christian Mortensen lived in Texas 28 years and then moved to a California nursing home at the age of 96.  He lived ~48 years in a statistically high cancer state and where it appears he spent the majority of his first ~68 years of life in Skanderborg, Denmark.  He lived ~116 years of age beating all other fellow men in longevity.

It looks like all 10 of these individuals lived within large families; most were married and/or had large circles of various interactive social-family relationships. It also appears mobility, stress reduction and positive mood was important contributors to overall wellbeing. As far as their habits and diets – it appeared they moderated the good with a “little” bad.  For the most part, their diets appeared healthy and most consumed very little if any alcohol.

Recall, 9 out of 10 of these super centenarians where female.  It is a fact that women live longer than men. This has a lot to do with metabolism, genetics, diet, body weight, habits and lifestyle. What specifically separates men from women? Men are greatly driven by hormones (read importance of testosterone on men’s health, Ref #8) which tend to cause more risky behavior and mood-stress characteristics. Also when testosterone levels drop, or become unbalanced in men during the aging process, this change tends to have a significant impact on men’s health and longevity. Male hormone replacement therapy monitored by a physician can help with low testosterone production, which may help support vitality and longevity while reducing health risk.

These centenarians shows us they lived relatively balanced lifestyles. They were physically and mentally active throughout their life span; they enjoyed personal and social gatherings and relationships mostly within large circles of friends and family. And for those residing in the United States lived mostly within low statistical cancer states (Ref #11).

They lived purposeful and mobile lifestyles, had positive attitudes, maintained low levels of stress, had good sense of humor, enjoyed selfless endeavors and shared their life experiences and stories with others. They also lived life to the fullest and without the crutch of habitual vices and little need of medications.

Reference,

  1.  Fadem, Mitch, Dr.  Health Benefits of Cigar Tobacco – Cigars and Medicine.  The Tobacco Leaf – Good or Bad?  About.com.  http://cigars.about.com/od/legalhealthissues/a/cigarmedicine.htm
  2. Rettner, Rachael.  Sweet Science:  The Health Benefits of Chocolate.  LiveScience.com.  11 February 2010. http://www.livescience.com/6111-sweet-science-health-benefits-chocolate.html
  3. Wikipedia.  The Free Encyclopedia. Oldest People.    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oldest_people#Oldest_people_ever
  4. Woodamarc.  How these Well Known Celebrities Lived So Long.  Hubpages.com.  20 August 2012.  http://woodamarc.hubpages.com/_sigsinmula/hub/How-Did-These-Well-Known-Celebrities-Live-so-Long
  5. Woodamarc.  Pain Depression Origins. Hubpages.com. 5 April 2010.  http://woodamarc.hubpages.com/_sigsinmula/hub/Pain-Depression-Origins
  6. Woodamarc.  Alcohol Consumption Good for You?  What?  Hubpages.com.  14 November 2008.  http://woodamarc.hubpages.com/_sigsinmula/hub/Alcohol-Consumption
  7. Woodard, Marc.  Disease is Scientifically Linked to Genetic Engineering of Food Crops.  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  22 September 2018.  http://www.mirrorathlete.com/2018/09/22/disease-is-scientifically-linked-to-genetic-engineering-of-food-crops/
  8. Woodard, Marc.  Low Testosterone, another Man Made Risky Fix?  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  22 January 2012.  http://www.mirrorathlete.com/2012/01/22/low-testosterone-another-man-made-risky-fix/
  9. Woodard, Marc.  Learn to Embrace the Pain, Exercise and Get Fit.  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  23 September 2011.  http://www.mirrorathlete.com/2011/09/23/learn-to-embrace-the-pain-exercise-and-get-fit/
  10. Woodard, Marc.  Wisdom of Consuming Oleic Acid [Olive Oil].  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  23 January 2010.  http://www.mirrorathlete.com/2010/01/23/mae-healthblog-wisdom-of-consuming-oleic-acid-2/
  11. Woodard, Marc.  Pancreatic Cancer Statistics and Recommendations.  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  24 November 2009.  http://www.mirrorathlete.com/2009/11/24/mae-health-blog-pancreatic-cancer-statistics-and-recommendations/
  12. Woodard, Marc.  Is Pancreatic Cancer on the Rise?  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  24 October 2009.  http://www.mirrorathlete.com/2009/10/24/mae-health-blog-is-pancreatic-cancer-on-the-rise-part-1

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2018 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





Clear up Yellowed, Thickened and Cracked Toenails Once and for all

30 01 2018

Last Update: 1/30/18

If you or someone you know has yellowed, thickened, cracked and/or swollen and inflamed toenails… it is caused from a fungus called onychomycosis [which literally means fungal infection of the nail].

Severe toenail fungus

Typically this disease is caused by a fungal tinea species and can also be caused by a candida yeast fungal species.  It is also possible to spread these tiny microorganisms to friends and family when good hygiene is not the standard.  Either species of fungus can cause a progressive condition that can infect one or more nails, causing them to thicken, discolor, crumble and separate from the toenail bed and cause a foul odor (Dutra 2014).

Good news… This infection can be removed and healthy pink toenails can be yours once again.

What is this fungus and how do we get it?  Environmental conditions necessary for it to survive and spread include:  Sweaty feet with cotton socks, or socks that don’t breathe, or hold moisture and can cause more than one toenail to become infected.  Public use areas that are warm, humid and moist; such as locker rooms, pools, saunas, gyms, even home showers shared by family members are suspect.  These are perfect environments for these organisms to infect others through bare foot surface contact.

Once the fungus resides within the toe and nail tissues, our footwear can sustains and spread it as long as the environmental conditions remain consistent.  And these things have mostly to do with improper hygiene.

Public use showers and locker room floors are fungus cultivating environments.

There appear to be other factors that include age and other medical conditions that can cause more severe foot and toenail problems.  These other factors may include abnormal PH skin, poor circulation, Athlete’s foot, diabetes, immune problems, another infection or injury of toe or nail and skin psoriasis (MayoClinic 2011).  It is said before a person reaches 70 years old, there is a 50/50 chance of contracting this fungal condition.

A mechanical or tissue breach may also make you prone or susceptible to acquiring this infection.  For instance, when you wear an improperly fitted, or undersized shoe and walk in a way that creates a bio-mechanical foot-toe friction, an opportunity is provided to the fungus and infect the tissues.  For example, when the end of the big and small toe nails repeatedly catch friction between the toes and shoe material, a loosening of the nail(s) from the toe bed(s) can lead to micro-trauma of both skin and nails.  Micro cracks in skin and nails present a perfect opportunity for bacteria to set in and spread its infectious fungus (Dutra 2014).

Also beware, unsterilized salon-home nail clippers, emery boards or other instruments can become infected and spread the fungus.  And once it’s on your toenails, after clipping them it is possible to spread this to fingernails if you don’t wash your hands.

And if you use a lot of toenail and fingernail polish to cover discolored nails, this may sustain the life of the fungus indefinitely.  Because of the way nail polish seals in bacteria and moisture, the tissue does not breathe or heal well.

Marc  tends to foot blister  in Nevada Desert.

If this fungal infection goes untreated it can continue on indefinitely and may cause, or contribute to increased health risk of other complications for a specific demographic that doesn’t’ seek medical treatment.  “When the immune system is weakened due to other medical conditions especially those with Aids, leukemia or have received an organ transplant serious health risk may result (MayoClinic 2011).”

There are medical treatments, pharmaceuticals and natural remedies you can use that may remove this fungus once and for all.  However, if you have a medical condition and/or infection is causing extreme pain and is of health concern, it is wise to seek medical attention in treating this disease immediately.

Your medical treatment options,

It is highly recommended you make an appointment with your primary care doctor or podiatrist for proper treatment of fungal foot, toe, toenail or fingernail infection.  Your doctor will likely prescribe one of the following topical medications:  For mild infection this may likely include one of four applications:  Formula 3, Elon, Fungasil, or Penlac.  For a more serious condition an oral antifungal drug may be prescribed, such as Sporanox or Lamisil.

Before oral medication is prescribed your doctor will likely need to assess your health risk through lab work.  This assessment is done to determine the functionality of your liver and what prescriptions are safe for your use.

Doctors often prescribe antifungal powders with orals to increase the odds that the fungal infections will stay neutralized or completely abated.

Natural treatments may remove or improve this condition.  The most popular ones are listed.

  1.  Vinegar soaking [1 part vinegar/2 part water], ~ 20 minutes daily; no less than 2-3 times per week.
  2. Some even treat this fungus with a daily application of Vicks Vapor Rub.  However it is wise to consult your doctor about this as there is no known study that proves it will kill this fungus and what is the proper application.  Apple Cider Vinegar [soak foot in equal parts mixed with water].
  3. Tea Tree Oil [swab pure oil on nail, or dilute with equal parts olive oil or thyme oil to apply to skin].
  4. White vinegar [considered the best solution in dealing with toe nail fungus]. 1 part vinegar to 2 parts water, soak 15 minutes daily].
  5. Garlic has allicin and is an anti-fungal element [use equal parts garlic and olive oil].  If you don’t have garlic oils, crush two garlic cloves and two Tsps. of olive oil.  Let mixture stand 24 hours, then apply and cover with bandage daily], (Top10 2014).
Before and after treatment

Before and after treatment

Note:  All natural treatments mentioned here are strictly informational. We do not provide medical advice. Consult with your doctor or other health care provider before using any of these tips or treatments.

How can you prevent toenail fungus from developing?

  1. Purchase properly fitted shoes that breathe and provide enough room for your toes.
  2. Wear sandals when appropriate.
  3. Air out shoes, throw away over worn socks and shoes.
  4. Change socks daily and especially after sweating in them and don’t wear socks that absorb moisture.
  5. Use anti-fungus powders and sprays; maintain short, dry and clean nails.
  6. Don’t pick at skin around nails even when there is infection.
  7. If you have your toenails manicured by a saloon, ensure they sterilize and disinfect instruments prior to use.
  8. After social functions remove nail polish.
  9. Bare foot walking in public places should be avoided.
  10. See your podiatrist if you have foot and/or toe fungus.

Note:  All tips mentioned here are strictly informational. We do not provide medical advice. Consult with your doctor or other health care provider before using any of these tips or treatments.

A new treatment hitting the marketplace that appears to be promising is photodynamic laser therapy to treat this condition.  This is where intense light is focused on a nail where an acid is applied as part of the protocol to kill the fungus.

Remove this fungus once and for all and get back the health of your toenails.  These medical treatments and natural tips have worked well for others and they can work well for you.  Make the effort to see your doctor and apply the proper treatment that will work for you.

Works Cited and Reference

Bing. “Toenail Fungus Pictures and Free – Bing Images.” Bing Images – Toenail and Fingernail Fungus. Microsoft. Web. 23 May 2014.

Dutra, Tim, Dr. “Toenail Fungus.” FootVitals. IMG Health Publications, 28 Apr. 2014. Web. 22 May 2014.

MayoClinic. “Nail Fungus.” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 25 Aug. 2011. Web. 23 May 2014.

Top 10. “How to Get Rid of Toenail Fungus.” Top 10. Top 10 Home Remedies. Web. 23 May 2014.

Woodard, Marc T. “Diabetes A Serious Disease.” MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets. MirrorAthlete, 19 September 2017. Web. 19 September 2017.

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2018 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.

 

 

 





Enjoy Holiday Meals Without Weight Gain or Guilt

17 12 2016

Santa’s on his way

Updated, 17 December 2016 Marc Woodard

I can’t believe how fast the end of year Holidays roll upon us.  And for some it can be a stressful time.  Especially if you have a hard time managing body weight.

I have an 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan that may alleviate fears of eating your favorite traditional Holiday meals and without gaining weight.

These tips can help many resist the temptation to overeat during this time of year.  I’m sharing a “no weight gain strategy.”  This strategy has helped past clients stay on weight loss target.  Admittedly most didn’t lose weight… however most didn’t gain any either.  And some even shed a few pounds by applying all 8 tips below.

Back History on the 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan – I was asked during a client consult if I could create a work around food strategy.  One that allowed someone to eat favorite foods during the Holidays without derailing a current weight loss plan.

Of course I told the young lady there’s always a risk of falling back into a bad food habit when overeating hyper-palatable foods.  But for this individual it was worth the risk to modify the current diet plan.  That is to enjoy a traditional Christmas meal with family and not fear losing control over foods and body weight.  Prior to this request she had avoided all Holiday meals in fear of weight gain.  And now doesn’t want to avoid them any more.  After applying the 8 tip program she acknowledged the following results.  There was no weight gain and she continued to stay on weight loss target for the following Year.

For some, it’s almost as if we have to harden the body for the rigors of war because of all the food temptations in front of us.  The smells and tastes are enough to drive anyone crazy and want to go on a food binge.

The worse part of consuming too many calories in a day, as we age our body’s metabolisms become less efficient at processing the excess.  Instead the metabolism gets very efficient at storing body fat weight.  It is also true during the Holidays most have a tendency to over indulge and then continue this pattern the following Year.

I also understand some of you have had tremendous success in melting the pounds away last year as you stuck to your new year’s weight loss resolution commitment.

Congratulation to you!

For those still struggling to lose weight don’t give up!  I’m sharing the same client tips I know can work for you.  And quite possibly may be habit changing enough to incorporate into your current weight loss program.

However the tips alone may not be enough to meet your ultimate weight loss goal.  Whereas ill-health conditions warrant medical doctor advisement prior to changing a daily routine.  The point being these food strategy tips will not help if you are in poor health, have substance abuse problems, personality disorder, e.g., obsessive compulsive tendencies, etc., and/or carry excessive body weight and grossly obese.  Moving on…

IMG_0186

A Time to Celebrate With Family

I’m no different than anyone else with regard to foods during the Holidays.   I’m greatly tempted to eat more than I need.  However, awareness of our food habit weaknesses combined with a food plan strategy is the best deterrent to minimize an uptick in body fat weight during the Holiday season.

The fact is as you age the body simply doesn’t require the excess calories it once needed during the developmental and active adult years.  This does not mean you have to give up all your favorite foods.   For the most part you can consume a selection of your choosing.  Your only real requirements are to follow the satiety suggestions below, reduce over processed food consumption and don’t eat or drink your calories after 8pm.  And participate in some form of low stress aerobic exercise activity daily [i.e., walking, biking, hiking, jogging, dancing, yard work, rowing, cross country ski, swimming, etc.].

Since everyone’s metabolism is different due to age, sex, health and medical condition, genetics, etc.,  I can’t predict or provide a one fit “hold the body weight line” solution that will work for everyone.  Especially when I know the program below was designed and worked for a few client types that wanted to indulge during the Holidays without experiencing weight gain.

However I do know these tips are worth sharing because they can be advantageous for you.  Especially if your the type of individual that has the will power to continue a healthy habit food course after partaking in an infrequent celebration or Holiday meal.

Can this 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan strategy work long term?  Yes I believe it can for certain individuals.  But determining each individuals commitment to a successful weight loss goal and plan is best accomplished through 1:1 consulting services where information sharing is a two-way street and the program is relative to individual needs and wants.

For those of you that are disciplined enough to pace yourself and turn off the feeding frenzy… My hats off to you!  You have will power most of us can only dream about.  For others, to help reduce calorie consumption during the Holidays my 8 Tip Holiday Meal Plan may be of consequence.

Best Time Ever

Best Time Ever

If you take this 8 Tip Holiday Meal Plan to heart and apply parts of it or the whole, it can work short and possibly long term.

Tip#1Never!  I repeat Never!  Go to your mother, mother-in-laws, or Grandmothers home for Holiday meals hungry!

The habit of starving ourselves in preparedness for the Holiday meal seems to be ingrained within the American spirit and culture.  I know my family like so many others during the Holidays have repeated this ritual.  It’s no wonder we can’t stop ourselves.  Before you know it, we’re all lying around like beached whales on a lido deck with “Hot… Hot… Hot,” playing in the background.  So, it stands to reason, you must eat a normal meal not less than 2-3 hours before you go over for a Holiday meal.

The way our digestion system processes food after a meal, the stomach will not be empty for the next 4-6 hours depending on metabolism.  This digestive function varies with each one of us.

I don’t suggest being selective when choosing Holiday foods.  Just serve the foods you want to eat and don’t over load your plate.  The point is when you get to the table you won’t be as hungry or want to eat as much.

Tip#2Never!  I repeat Never!  Drink alcohol prior to going into the meal.

Tasty Beer Cheer.

You don’t drink and drive do you?  Well, what makes you think you could drink and consume without injury to your body prior to sitting for the meal?  Although I’m being facetious, I’m also serious in the way I want to make my point.  Alcohol is a depressant, pain killer, relaxant, taste intensifier and social inhibitor.  The point is easy to understand here, eat and drink like Vikings… No pain equates to much inhibited calorie gain!

Limit yourself to two 8oz glasses of cheer after the meal (your choice).  Remember alcohol also contains calories that add up fast.

Tip#3Drink plenty of water throughout the day when attending Holiday meals.

Water is a natural solvent, absorbs well in the stomach and intestinal lining assisting the body’s digestive system to process food intake more efficiently and that means less calories stored as fat.  Plus, water will make you feel full faster and has no calories.

Tip#4Do not stay at the dinner table after eating.

This is where most of us fall prey to over eating indulgences.  It is very difficult to resist picking at the Holiday turkey, cranberry, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pies, olives, sipping on Champaign…  “Ohhhhhh the dressing and gravy… Give me a break!  I’m dying here.  I think I just made myself hungry.”

See how hard this is and I’m supposed to be giving you advice.  Look, I never said I wasn’t human, or this would be easy.  More so the reason to have a pre-meal battle plan strategy that moves one away from the table and out of the kitchen after the meal.

Tip 5#Take your first serving.  After you consume it wait 20 minutes before you think about seconds.

Take at least 20 minutes and enjoy the meal.  “Seconds is not recommended.”  This will be the hardest part of the meal plan.   It takes your brain approximately this much time to register whether you’ve eaten enough or not.

Focus on satiety not a feeling of fullness.  But if you do decide you can’t resist a second helping focus on a favorite serving that doesn’t take up more than 1/2 the plate diameter.  And no piling food on the plate.   Focus on 50% less than what you’d normally put on the plate for 1st’s and 2nd’s.

Tip#6Never!  I repeat Never!  Eat dessert after you’ve eaten your meal.

This will only add insult to injury.  Your body simply is not designed to handle this mass blood sugar spike without consequence, especially if you’ve achieved satiety after eating the main meal.  Wait 1 hour to see how your body processes the feeling of what you ate.  If you experience a feeling of satiety and not overfull after a period of time then do enjoy some dessert.  While eating dessert take your time to gage feeling of gut comfort. But if you begin to experience the feeling of near full, back off and leave the remaining portion of dessert.

Tip#7 Never!  I repeat never!  Take home left over’s.

This can set you up for failure early on into the New Year.  Simply by continuing to eat these foods addicts some to a similar eating pattern for months.  And thereafter another 10 pounds can be added quickly.

Walk where ever you find yourselves during the Holidays.

Tip#8Don’t quit your exercise program during the Holidays.

This is very important!  When you consume excess calories on “any day,” you will need to mobilize the body to remove the unspent fat fuel.  I highly recommend a daily walking program, or other Low-Impact aerobic activity at least 30 minutes daily.

You’ve now learned how it’s possible to embrace Holiday foods that don’t compromise the meal experience or add guilt.  And best of all when applied with conviction you won’t gain weight.  You may be surprised and even lose a little.

Marc Woodard wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  If fortunate enough to get covered in the white stuff, walk around in it. It’s a fantastic exercise activity experience.

Have a wonderful Holiday season with family and friends and don’t let your food fears and weight loss plans prevent a great meal experience with loved ones.

Plan, prepare and participate in the spirit of the Holidays without fear of being around the foods you love to eat.  You’ll be glad you did.

MirrorAthlete wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2016 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





Diabetes Dietary GI (Glycemic Index) and Weight Loss

23 10 2016
Healthy body weight keeps us fit, increases mobility endurance to see more of the world around us.

Author:  Marc Woodard,  “Healthy body weight increases mobility and endurance to see more of the world around us.  Natural whole foods are a big part of this equation.”

Last Updated:  23 October 2016

A good way to manage diabetes and weight loss is to understand the connection between carbohydrates and effects on blood sugar levels.  Learn how to apply the Glycemic Index (GI), choose healthier foods and maintain blood sugar at safe levels while losing weight.

This is an index that ranks carbohydrate foods on a scale of 0-100.  Zero being foods low in absorbable blood sugar and 100 the highest absorbable sugars from foods.

The higher the GI value of foods the higher the blood glucose level in the body.  When blood sugar levels increase from foods consumed the body produces more insulin to store it until the energy fuel is needed to get work done.  When blood glucos levels are sustained over ~105-110 for a period of time it often results in unwanted weight gain and for others disease.  The food groups listed below are determined by many in the health and dietary profession as healthier food choices for diabetics.  Because they are low absorbable sugar foods they are slower to digest and absorbed into the blood.  This helps to lower and maintain blood sugar levels.

I wrote a previous article “Diabetes a Serious Disease.” Click on the link to learn more on topic.  In short, diabetes is defined and diagnosed as type 1 or 2.  Whereas insulin function is critical to maintain blood sugar levels and metabolic receptors use it to nourish and fuel body movement.  When either of these systems break or become less efficient at utilizing blood sugar then risk of disease, or aggravation or worsening of pre-existing ill-health condition may occur.

Once diagnosed as a diabetic it is wise to consume lower absorbable carbohydrate foods.  This choice will help to mitigate damage to nerves,  blood vessels and alleviate diabetic nerve pain.  While reducing excess body fat known to contribute to cardiovascular and circulatory disease.

It is the complex carbohydrates “e.g., whole foods multi-grains and fibrous fruits and vegetables” that also delay hunger pains and support weight loss while alleviating diabetic symptoms.

However don’t be fooled in believing low glycemic foods alone will fully address overweight problems.   Although simple and complex carbohydrates are necessary in the diet, it is the quantity, or total calories consumed in a day that cause body weight to increase.   Eating too much of anything, including healthy foods while living a sedentary lifestyle can lead to any number of health problems.  Not addressed in this article are other factors that may contribute, or lead to diabetes and obesity.  Such as hormonal, immunological and genetic factors.  Maintaining a healthy diet is part of the health equation, but only a medical specialist can determine through diagnosis if other treatment or prescription is necessary to achieve your healthy lifestyle goals.

Below I provide a popular listing of low sugar foods good for overall health and weight management.  The American Diabetes and American Dietetic Associations have not yet adapted the GI concept.  It appears this has more to do with lack of empirical evidence required of each food listed and resulting degree of benefit to a diabetic patient.

If you suspect your diabetic or have long term overweight or obesity challenges, I highly recommend you request a referral of your primary care physician to see an endocrinologist, diabetic or metabolic specialist.  Then request relative laboratory tests to ensure your blood sugars and metabolism are functioning at safe levels.   Also, discuss managing your diet through healthier food choice by using the Glycemic Food Index (GI) as a safe guide to identify low absorbable sugar foods.  Prior to physician visit select the foods you prefer from the index.  Then consult with the doctor in determining if those choices are right for you.  For a full GI listing ask your doctor, use an Internet search engine, or visit your local book store.  Below represents the short lists.

Lower Glycemic Food Index (GI).   Sugar alcohols (Sorbitol, Maltitol) Soy drinks, milk, yoghurt, Sweet potatoes, yams, vegetables, Fruits – plums, pears, peaches, grapes, grapefruit, cherries, bananas, apples, avocados, fresh juices.  Dried beans, peas, lentils.  Spaghetti, pasta, Basmati rice, Whole grain breads and pita Nuts and seeds.

Higher Glycemic Food Index (GI) Quicker Acting Carbohydrates Ice cream (low-fat), frozen yogurt.  White bread, doughnuts, croissants, rice cakes, bagels.  White potatoes, corn, white rice.  Low fiber cereals – Cornflakes, RiceKrispies, Fruit loops, etc.  Pineapple, cantaloupe, watermelon, ripe bananas.  Soda, sugar sweetened sports and energy drinks.  Candy, sugar.

Since I’m not one to follow the letter of the dietary law, I do eat some high absorbable sugar foods in moderation.  But mostly I consume foods listed in the lower GI.  It’s not because I’m a diabetic, I just prefer those foods.  If you get into the habit of choosing healthier foods, after about 2 weeks you’ll begin to naturally crave them.

It is the hyper-palatable, or over sweetened processed foods by food engineers and unhealthy alcohol and mixed drink habits that addict us to the high absorbable sugar products.   Breaking the simple carbohydrate  food habit by learning how to moderate it in the diet is a challenge for some.  For others, not so much.  Give a healthier food choice a try and see if you can begin a new and healthier dietary habit.  If it works for you, you’ll feel better, have more energy, lose weight without hunger pains and mobility and fitness levels will increase.  And just maybe you’ll be less dependent on some medications and want to do more daily exercise.

As a side note…  never forego taking prescribed medications even if you improve diet and have significant weight loss and relief of diabetic symptoms .  Follow all doctor treatment and prescription advise.   Only a doctor can determine if removal of certain meds is right for you.

Take the low glycemic diet challenge and explore the world one step at a time. "You Can Do It!"

Take the low glycemic food diet challenge.  Explore the world one step at a time. “You Can Do It!”

If you’d like to prepare healthier foods for your family, check out our book store at the home site to find recipe books, specialized diets and cook books, etc.  These books & magazines provide a plethora of different ideas on how you can prepare tastey foods for those with diabetes, or those looking to get more fit and lose weight.

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2016 Copyright, All rights reserved.  MirrorAthlete Inc.,  Publishing @: www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free monthly eNewsletter.





MirrorAthlete Book Release Update, Principled Fitness and Healthy Lifestyle Philosophy

18 08 2016
Life's Journey knows no limitations.

“Life’s Journey knows no limitations.” Marc Woodard hiking through the Nevada Desert.

 

Updated: 18 August 2016

The long awaited 10 year book project and publication is now in final editorial review with planned release date scheduled, 1st quarter of 2017.

Insight into the books content,

Our book reads like no other fitness and healthy lifestyle competitor book in the marketplace.

It is loaded with unique personal, fitness consultant and client perspective, relative people stories, etc., self-help tool kits, forms, tables and satire graphic depictions that support each chapter’s unique content and so much more.

These illustrations, stories, lessons learned and teaching points provides the reader with an enjoyable, entertaining and interactive experience while learning consumer and fitness trainer and health consultant wisdom.  And healthy living techniques that can be used to improve quality of life for decades to follow.  In many ways the content was developed and designed to be a timeless fitness and healthy lifestyle book of how to live life to the fullest.  And applicable to all demographics within any environment or culture.

MirrorAthlete has evolved through an exercise science discipline applied within a fitness consulting practice throughout the years.  I’ve taken multiple client and personal lifetime experiences and fitness programming successes and defined, related and applied these things with a very unique perspective understanding Westernized cultural habits and behavioral impact on health.  Our principled fitness and healthy lifestyle doctrine is based on MirrorAthlete® Principled Fitness and healthy lifestyle Philosophy .

The knowledge within this book allows anyone to succeed in creating a customized fitness and healthy habits lifestyle program without the cost of a professional trainer or specialized fitness and health consultant service or products.   The information you need to know is broken down by easy to understand principles, multiple professional citations, consumer safety awareness, client examples, consumer weight loss; strength, endurance and competitive training knowledge and wisdom, to include how to identify physical enhancement fad and scam services and products; medical referral insight and so much more.   And most important how to build a customized fitness and healthy habits lifestyle plan and implement it relative to your lifestyle needs.  Then gets you to the next fitness level naturally if you’d like to take that challenge.

If you lack motivation to break a bad habit, addiction or get started with a basic healthy habits program, or advance your fitness and healthy lifestyle goals, we shown how to overcome low motivation by increasing will power to stay the course.    As you work towards your fitness goal, you’ll do so without worry of applying a restrictive diet plan, or purchase of expensive physical enhancement product, service or gimmick to reduce body fat, build muscle, etc.  We don’t sell hype, only information on how to achieve natural fitness and healthy longevity change results which are backed by hundreds of professional citations and client story examples.

The marketplace is littered with manmade products and services that promise fast results… some appear to work short term, while others don’t work at all and in both cases increase health risk.  In the long run addiction to manmade consumables loaded with unnatural chemicals increase health risk.  Consumers need to know, they don’t have to go the unsafe route to achieve these goals at the expense of health.

We know the marketplace won’t provide consumers the entire health risk picture regarding unhealthy, addictive and dangerous products for good reason.  There’s no money in it for them.  Half truth testimonials that promise quick fitness and health results sell.  The other half truth is man manipulates and injects addictive chemical and genetically engineered ingredients into consumer foods and supplemental products known to cause health problems and as previously stated “not popular selling points.”  We expose these consumer and marketplace truths.

If you’re tired of paying hundreds and thousands of dollars for fitness and diet products and services that don’t work long term, or don’t work at all and tired of being overweight and unfit, look no further.

MirrorAthlete Inc., is uniquely positioned through years of practical and scholastic healthy lifestyle experiences and consulting services which enables us to easily expose these hard to find industrial and marketplace secrets.    It is for good reason these consumer industries hope the majority of you never discover what’s revealed in this book.  Our unique principled philosophy as applied to our K-12 schools and healthy community plans threatens to fundamentally change the fitness, health and medical marketplace supply and demand and profit margins model and governmental organizations.

I personally show how to apply these healthy lifestyle concepts by detailing these 18 Powerful Fitness and Healthy Lifestyle Principles [MirrorAthlete® Principled Fitness and Healthy Lifestyle Philosophy ]These principles provide the building blocks you learn to master in order to customize your own fitness or healthy habits program without breaking the bank or your body.

The book is an interesting, energetic, optimistic and exciting read in itself.  But more so by way of each ending chapter there’s an ongoing personal fitness challenge and personalized message by ‘yours truly’ relative to each chapters content.  By connecting each chapter principle and content dots this way, I further show how MirrorAthlete principled philosophy can also be applied to improve any physical adversity scenario, i.e., illness, disease, limited mobility.  Those with physical and mental adversity challenges can relate and use the same tool box’s provided within the chapters to help advance any desired fitness or health need improvement.  Thereby allowing one to take control of their health and immobility predicament and continue to live life to the fullest in the best way possible.

We ask that you and your friends consider supporting our mission  “Saving a Nation in Pain,” by taking the following actions.   Visit our web site and look for the book publication release date.  Then purchase a book once released. We’d truly appreciate the support to expand our company resources and educational outreach message to put an end to the obesity epidemic plaguing our youth.

We also accept donations at our home site to further promote ill-health prevention and healthy lifestyle education for families and communities.

Another way to support us – If you believe in MirrorAthlete® Principled Fitness and Healthy Lifestyle Philosophy, please click on the BLUE FaceBook “LIKE” button at our home page.  We appreciate your support.

To read the latest Q&A:  Marc Woodard Reflects on MirrorAthlete.

Additional Read “MirrorAthlete Book Publishing Story:” “Write Passionate Content, Publish a Book, Build your Business”

Good health to you and your family!

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2016 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.

 

 





Back Pain Relief Wisdom

24 01 2016
Don't let back pain prevent you from places you want to be.

Don’t let back pain prevent you from exploration and activities you enjoy.

Last Updated:  24 Jan 2016

The most common muscular skeletal weight bearing pain typically occur within the lower back for many.  Whereas soft tissue and bone, or musculoskeletal tissue becomes compromised.  Which include nerves, cartilage, disc, ligaments and tendons where localized swelling, soreness and aggravating and radiating pain occur.

Human studies and statistics have shown low back pain will account for more sick leave and disability time than any other single medical condition.  Nearly 80% of all adults will experience back pain some time in their lives.  It is for this reason it is important to understand how to take preventative and corrective measures to avoid, alleviate and timely treat weight bearing joint pain.  Also recognize the difference between common causes of back pain, severity of condition and treatment course options.

Weight bearing and repetitive physical work pain is often medically defined as an acute or chronic pain condition that may be caused by injury, postural imbalance, repeated physical activity and diagnosed as a strain or sprain, or compression injury, or Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI).  A Repetitive Strain Injury is also known as Cumulative Trauma Disorder (CTD).  Which has a compromised muscle-tendon relationship.  Some cause examples of these pain disorders may be a result of the following activities: administrative work, gardening, biking, walking, jogging, running, sports, commercial painting, plumbing, electrical and other laborious work etc.

“There are also chronic nerve compression injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome, radial tunnel syndrome and cubital tunnel syndrome. In these cases, the spaces through which the nerves run are narrowed due to inflammation or fluids putting pressure on the nerves (Kriskarr 2012).”

Of course there are many pathological musculoskeletal compromise possibilities which could cause weight bearing or low back pain in vertebra joints.  Some of the more familiar diseases of the back are: degenerative discs [wear & tear on between vertebra space], herniated discs, [swollen, and irritated “overblown” discs], spinal stenosis [narrowing of vertebrae canal presenting sciatica radiating numbness and pain down the leg].

Off Road Trail Hiking Exercise.

Remove back pain and experience off road trail hikes, enjoy nature and get more daily exercise.

Regardless, our focus is not to play doctor or learn all the possible causes of back pain.  But instead to understand how to recognize and prevent unnecessary pain through prevention and seek corrective medical treatment when needed.

Poor ergonomic posture or laborious repetitive work or sedentary lifestyle combined with weight gain almost always put undue stress immediately on the low back.  And when poor work and activity posture, footwear and overweight conditions are not addressed, it’s just a matter of time before weight bearing joints begin to ache, strain and become painful.  If left uncorrected that pain will worsen, slow you down and increase risk of injury and put you out of commission.

The biggest difference between strains vs. “sprain” is the severity of injury and healing time.  For instance sprains are typically long-term injuries which may or may not require surgery and almost always require physical therapy and rest to alleviate the compromised soft tissue condition.

Most of us are familiar, or have experienced a strained [overstretched] or sprained tendon, ligament or muscle.  Sprains are often verified and substantiated using MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) equipment to determine exact locality, severity and corrective treatment for tissue damage.  The technology can see the degree of partial or full tear of soft tissue sprain often associated with significant swelling and bruising of injury site.  Whereas x-ray typically cannot and is mostly used to confirm broken and fractured bone and observe bone density health.

Many who experience weight bearing pain of the foot, ankle, knee, hip, back or neck don’t make the pain origin or cause connection.  That pain cause is often the result of musculoskeletal postural misalignment.  Whereas misalignment of musculoskeletal weighted posture starting at the feet cause imbalance and joint instability while walking, working and during exercise activity.  And this condition often results in multiple radiating joint pain areas up the body’s trunk and can cause a painful limp.

Like pain free body posture, A tree is only as healthy as the foundation.

Like pain free body posture without compromised food mechanics… a tree is only as healthy as the root foundation system.

The sole of the foot is like a tree root system.  For instance, when the soil erodes from one side of a soil bank, the tree may begin to lean due to a breach of ground foundation stability.  Then the roots on the opposite side grow and strengthen and absorb the stress to keep the tree growing upright.

Through time the trunk grows slightly offset to relieve stress on the compromised root system, but may cause the mid-line tree trunk to crack or snap during a heavy wind storm.  Similar to upright walking posture, if walking with a painful lower back caused by a compromised foot foundation, if left uncorrected this condition will have an effect on an number of distal weight bearing joints [foot-to-knee-hip-back pain].      Whereas poor foot mechanics like the compromised tree root system make it likely to cause multiple joint pain and injury possibilities.

However it is possible with corrective insoles and supportive footwear to realign and balance body posture and completely alleviate stress and pain of other affected joints, even the neck and shoulders.  In this case the corrective lift at the insole, or bottom of foot may realign the low back and neck vertebrae simultaneously while removing a painful limp caused by sciatica for example.

If any type of acute joint pain condition appears more frequent and severe…. “Pay Attention!”  It is important to remember weight bearing pain is often a result of unconditioned physical body, sedentary lifestyle, overweight condition and improper footwear, or disease.  The good news is it can be corrected if timely action is taken.  Like a tire realignment, corrected foot mechanics can achieve the pain free goal.

Recommendations to treat weight bearing pain before it becomes chronic

  1. If experiencing acute weight bearing pain:  a) “Apply Ice right away.  Ice reduces inflammation and pain.  Be careful not to use ice for more than 15-20 minutes, every 2 hours.  Even though heat is used to ease tension & soreness, heat might cause more swelling in the first 2-3 days.  b) “Place the ice on the painful area in a fanny pack while you are up and moving around.  Apply ice consistently as long as you have swelling and pain.”  c) “If you have diabetes or circulatory problems, limit applying ice and heat to 8-10 minutes.”  d) “Take medication as directed.  Common medications are acetaminophen (such as Tylenol) and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen (such as Motrin) and naproxen sodium (such as Aleve).  In some cases, prescription pain medications may help.  It may take 10 to 14 days of taking it as prescribed to be fully effective.” 

Reference:  (Kaiser Permanente Brochure Recommendations, Items 1, a-d) 

Note: If you experience any abnormal pain seek medical advisement, diagnosis and treatment from your doctor immediately.

  1. Maintain Ideal Body Weight.  Simply enter into any Internet search engine, BMI (Body Mass Index) use free calculator, enter your height and weight.  This will give you an ideal of whether or not you’re underweight, normal or overweight for your current body mass stature.  If too heavy over normal body weight for height, you’re at increased risk for weight bearing pain.  Most specifically:  foot, ankle, knee, hip, back.

    IMG_1061

    Exercise comes in all fun forms and exciting playtime activities.

  2. Perform daily aerobic exercise to burn fat (e.g., bike, walk, aerobic dance exercise not less than 3/week @ 20-30min/day).  When heart rate is increased for extended periods of exercise, the body’s metabolism during aerobic activity burns more of the preferred fuel source from body fat.
  3. Balanced nutrition:  consume more fiber, drink more water and decrease total calorie intake daily.  Remove high processed fat and sugar foods and drinks.  Focus more on shopping and consuming fresh whole foods more in line with Mediterranean diet which contains plenty of fish, fruits and vegetables.  Avoid fried foods if possible.

    Catch it yourself it does a body good.

  4. If your feet are in pain, the likelihood of sustaining daily aerobic exercise activity is greatly reduced.  Seek a referral from your Primary Physician to get a diagnosis and treatment from podiatrist (foot specialist).  See if your foot posture is the cause of your weight bearing pain.
  5. Realize:  a) In order to perform daily aerobic exercise activity will likely require good insoles and footwear to offset pain and lose weight.  b) Don’t pay $300-$1500/year for custom molded insoles out-of-pocket from your podiatrist if you don’t have to.  First try inexpensive insoles at a local pharmacy center if your health care situation is limited in services, deductions and co-pays are high.  Simply stand on a free foot analysis machine and receive corrective insole inventory selection based on the postural hot spot(s) imbalance foot imprint.  And if the insoles remove pain it is well worth the effort and cost.  However, do see your doctor to positively determine pain cause and origin.  If you do get a referral to podiatrist, decide if you want to try the inexpensive insoles before paying the cost of customized insoles, especially if you have to pay over $50.00.
  6. Do you need surgery or other treatment? Ask your doctor about Spinal Cord Stimulation (SCS).  “Electrical nerve stimulation is a procedure that uses an electrical current to treat chronic pain. Peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS) and spinal cord stimulation (SCS) are two types of electrical nerve stimulation. In either case a small pulse generator sends electrical stimuli that interfere nerve impulses to alleviate the pain (WebMD 2014). Reports show SCS use results in: 84% reported that their quality of life was improved or greatly improved, 77% had good or excellent pain relief, and 82% decreased their use of pain medications (St. Jude Medical 2016).

    Seek adventure, explore, get excited about life and move the body.

    Seek adventure, explore, get excited about life while moving and exercising the body.

  7. “Tens Therapy” electro muscular-stimulation can provide significant relief.  Ask your doctor about obtaining a Tens unit through health care coverage, or if covered to receive electro muscular-stimulation physical therapy sessions.  “Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is a therapy sometimes used to treat localized or regional pain. During TENS therapy, electrodes deliver electrical impulses to nearby nerve pathways — which can help control or relieve some types of pain. TENS is often used to treat osteoarthritis and chronic and postoperative pain (Thompson 2014).”
  8. Tens units can also be purchased on-line, or provided by HMO.
  9. Acupuncture – “May also reduce chances of chronic back pain from occurring.  “One of the largest studies to date on acupuncture and chronic pain — a meta-analysis of 29 well-conducted studies involving nearly 18,000 patients and published in October 2012 in the Archives of Internal Medicine — found that acupuncture is effective for treating chronic pain and therefore is a reasonable referral option (Palermo 2015).”

If acute back, or any joint pain seems abnormal or Intolerable, or you’ve recently experienced an injury consult your physician immediately for diagnosis and treatment.

Citations:

Kriskarr. “What Is a Compression Injury?” VACUPRACTOR. Vacupractor, 23 Oct. 2012. Web. 22 Jan. 2016.

Thompson, Jeffrey, M.D. “TENS Therapy: An Option for Fibromyalgia Treatment?” – Mayo Clinic. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, n.d. Web. 22 Jan. 2016.

Palermo, By Elizabeth. “What Is Acupuncture?” LiveScience. TechMedia Network, 05 Mar. 2015. Web. 22 Jan. 2016.

St. Jude Medical. “Power Over Your Pain.” Spinal Cord Stimulation: A Proven Therapy for Pain. St. Jude Medical, Inc., 2016. Web. 22 Jan. 2016.

WebMD. “Electrical Nerve Stimulation for Chronic Pain.” WebMD. WebMD, 12 Mar. 2014. Web. 22 Jan. 2016.

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2016 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.