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December 2007 Health-E-News.
Empowering you to optimal health

Healthy Habits 101

Ways to Teach Your Children the Value of a Healthy Lifestyle

We all want to teach our children to grow up healthy, but these days, where do we start? Here are 10 ways to help children develop healthy habits, courtesy of the American Heart Association (www.americanheart.org).

  1. Practice what you preach. It's considerably easier to convince your children to adopt healthy habits if you're doing the same.
  2. Involve the whole family. Establishing a regular pattern of exercising as a family accomplishes two important things: It keeps everyone in shape and serves as important bonding time.
  3. Limit screen time. Too much time watching television or playing video/computer games can lead to excessive snacking and a sedentary lifestyle. Get them out of the house and staying active.
  4. Make it fun. Let your children discover which specific healthy activities they truly enjoy. If they don't like it, they won't stick with it.
  5. Focus on the positives. Celebrate your children's successes and help them develop a healthy self-image. Low self-esteem can lead to poor eating, exercise and lifestyle habits.
  6. Set goals and limits. If goals are excessively restrictive or vague, children are less likely to rise to the challenge. Establish clear nutrition and exercise goals (dessert two times a week; a half-hour walk five times a week, etc.).
  7. Reward wisely. Rather than rewarding children with desserts or sugary snacks (a common tactic), find healthy ways to show a job well done.
  8. Turn them into chefs. Get your children involved in planning and preparing meals; then sit down at the dinner table together and enjoy the healthy meal you've created together.
  9. Knowledge is power. Teach children the value of reading food labels and being aware of the healthy (and not so healthy) ingredients in the foods they eat.
  10. Don't pass the buck. You're the parent – that means it's up to you to teach your children about good health. School and health care providers can only do so much. That's a fairly big responsibility for you to shoulder, but it's the most important investment you can make in your children's long-term well-being.

Simple Ways to Maximize Your Own Health

  1. Regular Exercise: Regular exercise has numerous (hundreds) amazing benefits. Did you read the research that showed that just 20 minutes of exercise, three times a week had a greater effect than two of the leading anti-depression medications! Simply going for a walk will have amazing benefits. Ask us for more ideas and make sure your spine and nerve system are checked to ensure is functioning at 100% before exercise to ensure maximum benefits.
  2. Eat fish three times a week: The EPA and DHA found in fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring, trout and pilchards has some amazing benefits in the functioning of your brain. Increasing your EPA and DHA intake has been shown to help with attention deficiency disorder, alzheimer's, weight loss, and more. If you aren't interested in eating fish, ask about an appropriate supplement.
  3. Eat 10+ servings of fruit and vegetables: You have to eat something, so make it fruits and vegetables. Having fresh fruit and prepared vegetables around the house is the perfect snack. Make it a goal to enjoy at least 7 servings a day (a serving is roughly what will fit in the palm of your hand) and watch for the benefits.
  4. The solution to pollution is dilution: If you are unable to eliminate toxins in your food choices or work environment, then a simple option is to drink quality, fresh water. Simply drinking 2 litres (3.5 pints) of water a day will dramatically improve your health.
  5. Get regular Chiropractic adjustments: getting regular adjustments is the foundation for a optimally functioning nerve system. With a properly functioning nerve system all the benefits of your other healthy steps are maximized. Have you ever talked to someone on the phone who lived over-seas? The both of you can have the best phones in the world, however if the connection between the two phones is faulty, having a conversation is next to impossible. Your body works the same way; if your nerves can't send the information from your body to your brain, ms-communication happens and the result is health problems.

 

Diet Wards Off Alzheimer's disease

A diet rich in fish, omega-3 oils, fruits and vegetables may lower your risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease (AD), whereas consuming omega-6 rich oils could increase chances of developing memory problems, according to a study published in the current, issue of Neurology.

For the study, researchers examined the diets of 8,085 men and women over the age of 65 who did not have dementia at the beginning of the study. Over four years of follow-up, 183 of the participants developed Alzheimer's disease and 98 developed another type of dementia.

The study found people who regularly consumed omega-3 rich oils, such as canola oil, flaxseed oil and walnut oil, reduced their risk of dementia by 60%, compared to people who did not regularly consume such oils. People who ate fruits and vegetables daily also reduced their risk of dementia by 30% compared to those who didn't't regularly eat fruits and vegetables.

The study also found people who ate fish at least once a week had a 35% lower risk of Alzheimer's disease and 40% lower risk of dementia, but only if they did not carry the gene that increases the risk of Alzheimer's, called apolipoprotein E4, or ApoE4.

"Given that most people do not carry the ApoE4 gene, these results could have considerable implications in terms of public health," notes study author Pascale Barberger-Gateau, PhD.

Neurology – November 13, 2007.

 

Chiropractic Neck Adjustments are Extremely Safe

A study published in the scientific medical journal "Spine" notes the safety of chiropractic.  The article published in the October 2007 issue of the journal was titled, "Safety of Chiropractic Manipulation of the Cervical Spine: A Prospective National Survey".  The study was a prospective national survey designed to, "estimate the risk of serious and relatively minor adverse events following chiropractic manipulation of the cervical spine by a sample of U.K. chiropractors."

The authors admitted that the risk of any serious side effects to chiropractic care was relatively unknown to them and the medical community.  The chiropractic profession has long noted that the malpractice rates for the chiropractic profession at large, a possible indicator for injury from care, were considerably lower than any other medical health care providers.

This study looked at the outcomes from 19,722 chiropractic patients who had received some form or another of neck adjustments that they referred to as "chiropractic manipulation of the cervical spine."  The researchers reviewed a total of 50,276 neck adjustments and looked to see if there were any serious side effects from the chiropractic care. They defined serious effects to be those that resulted in the need to be referred to a hospital, or that caused a worsening of symptoms immediately after treatment and/or resulted in persistent or significant disability or incapacity.

The results as quoted in the study were that, "There were no reports of serious adverse events."  Researchers did not find any serious adverse effects in any of the subjects they studied. They also noted that this is the first medical study of its kind by stating, "Safety of treatment interventions is best established with prospective surveys, and this study is unique in that it is the only prospective survey on such a large scale specifically estimating serious adverse events following cervical spine manipulation."

Researchers noted the safety advantage between chiropractic care and drug care by saying, "The risk rates described in this study compare favorably to those linked to drugs routinely prescribed for musculoskeletal conditions in general practice."  They summed up their findings when they stated, "On this basis, this survey provides evidence that cervical spine manipulation is a relatively safe procedure when administered by registered U.K. chiropractors."

Spine - October 2007