Archive for October, 2018

Building Strong Bones

Posted on October 4, 2018. Filed under: Acupuncturist, Aging, Exercise, Health, Hormone, injury, rebuild, Joints | Tags: , , , , , |

gregmonicaweight1~by Dr. Greg Steiner

Everyone needs strong bones; they provide structure and protect us from injury.  Fortunately, there are many ways to build stronger, denser bones even at an older age.  One of the best ways to increase bone density is exercise, but certain types of exercise yield better results than others.  Bones remodel themselves according to the stress placed upon them.  Doing light weights with lots of repetitions doesn’t really tug and pull and allow enough force on the bones & muscles to strengthen them. To properly “stress” a bone, you’ll want to use heavier weights but not so heavy as to injure yourself.  Body weight used as resistance can also work and can include yoga, elastic tubing, pushups, etc…) Weight bearing refers to how much of your body weight you are holding up while exercising.  For example, walking would be more weight-bearing than bike riding and running is more weight bearing than swimming (due to buoyancy of water there is less resistance).

Changing the direction and various angles in which we move our bodies can strengthen bones as well.  The hips, spine, wrist and ribs are much more prone to density issues, so focus on these areas are important. Because most of the time we move our hips in a straight linear pattern, the bones get the message that they need to maintain density for that path only.  That’s why exercise which involves swiveling, twisting or turning can build strength all around.  Exercises that rotate the hips include dancing, martial arts, tennis and even tai chi.

The next best way to build bone density is through nutrition.  Ample protein is needed because 50% of our bones are made of protein and really low protein can weaken bones.  If you consume a lot of protein, be sure to balance it with lots of vegetables. Be sure to also incorporate calcium.  The RDA is 1000-1200 mg daily but it’s been found that its better absorbed if spread out over the day instead all at once.  Great non-diary calcium providing foods include sardines, salmon, almonds, kale and broccoli.  Vitamin d and k help build strong bones too.  Magnesium is important because it helps activate vitamin D.  Other nutrients that are great for bone health include collagen (for bone flexibility), zinc, and omega oils.  Specifically, omega oils provide an anti-inflammatory response and are protectors against bone loss as we age.  You can boost your omega 3’s with fish and plant sources like chia seeds, flaxseeds, and walnuts.

These recommendations as well as maintaining a healthy weight can not only keep you from losing bone mass and developing brittle bones but also actually increase it.  As we age, it becomes more difficult to build new bone, but not impossible; so work on building stronger bones and muscles to help battle osteoporosis, keep you more stable and  prevent injury in the future.

Dr Greg is an active resident of Twin Creeks in Allen, TX and his background is in acupuncture, health psychology, and chiropractic. He is with CA Acupuncture and Chiropractic Clinic located at 1101 Raintree Circle, Suite # 288, and can be reached for questions or appointments by phoning 972-747-0928.

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What Is Chronic Inflammation And How To Fight It Naturally

Posted on October 4, 2018. Filed under: Acupuncture Information, Healing, Health, inflammation, Pain | Tags: , , , , , |

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~by Dr. Greg Steiner

Inflammation isn’t always a “bad” thing.  In fact, inflammation is what helps us to heal.  When the body has an injury, (ie. cut, bruise, infection, etc…) inflammation is the body’s first response. This process includes redness, swelling, heat, fluid increase to the injured area and altered function.  The intent is to repair, but sometimes it creates pain. This is called acute inflammation and its temporary and short term.  The other type of inflammation is chronic and ongoing.  Bad inflammation happens when the body thinks it has a danger when it really doesn’t. It keeps releasing its own inflammatory compounds where the body starts attacking itself mistaking areas like joints or intestines as an invader (think autoimmune disease, asthma, ibs, arthritis).

We often think of inflammation as a physical injury but it’s been found that putting the wrong kinds of food into our bodies can trigger it as well. Terms we hear often today like “leaky gut”, “gluten sensitivity”, “brain fog” and even the ability to lose weight could possibly be linked to chronic, low-grade inflammation.  With that said, one of the best ways to fight off inflammation is by changing our diet.  The biggest culprit that triggers inflammation is sugar.  This includes desserts, pastries, sodas, coffee drinks and even fruit juices.  Sugar goes by many names so look on ingredient labels for any word ending in “ose”, like fructose or sucrose and stay away from them.  Even artificial sweeteners like aspartame may trigger an inflammatory response.  Opt for a natural sweetener like stevia which doesn’t spike insulin levels, is low in calories yet gives the sweet taste desired.  I’ve seen patients with chronic headaches have a relief in symptoms by simply reducing sugars (especially artificial sugars) in their diets.

Many of my patients have noticed positive results in their health by opting to follow an elimination diet where they exclude certain foods to determine if perhaps they were the reason for their malaise.  Not everyone has negative results when they eat certain foods but they might feel improved symptoms by removing some known triggers.  Besides sugar, these triggers include:

  • Peanuts
  • Alcohol
  • Dairy-frozen, yogurt, ice cream, butter
  • Gluten-wheat, rye, and barley products
  • Refined carbs-white bread, white rice, potatoes and pasta
  • Trans and Saturated fats-found in fast and fried foods, cookies, donuts and even crackers
  • Processed meats-bacon, lunch meat, hot dogs
  • Artificial chemicals-food additives, coloring, and preservatives
  • High Sodium products-often found in canned soups & frozen meals

So with a long list of foods we should stay away from, what can we eat that are actually good for us? These include green leafy veggies like spinach, celery, broccoli, bok choy, and kale.  Other anti-inflammatory foods include beets, berries, pineapple, along with wild caught (not farmed) salmon, bone broth, chia & flax seeds, coconut oil and spices including turmeric and ginger.

Remember, inflammation isn’t always a “bad” thing.  It’s excess and continual inflammation that prevents us from staying healthy.  Fortunately, we can fight it naturally by eating the right foods for our body, incorporating exercise and also reducing & managing stress in our daily lives.

Dr Greg is an active resident of Twin Creeks and his background is in acupuncture, health psychology, and chiropractic. He is with CA Acupuncture and Chiropractic Clinic located at 1101 Raintree Circle, Suite # 288, and can be reached for questions or appointments by phoning 972-747-0928.

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The Mind & Body Connection To Stress & How To Manage It

Posted on October 4, 2018. Filed under: Acupuncture Information, Chiropractic, Fatigue, Healing, Stress | Tags: , , , |

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Dr. Greg & Monica beating stress & having fun at the same time!

~by Dr. Greg Steiner

Everyone encounters stress; it’s just a part of daily life.  Some have more than others but understanding how it impacts us physically and emotionally and building resilience and knowledge of how to combat it are keys to a healthier and happier existence.  Our mind and body are connected in that our minds control our thoughts and how we think affects how we feel.  Ever see someone who’s angry?  Usually their body is tense, with an aggressive type of posture.  Someone who is sad or depressed usually exhibits a slumping posture with shoulders rolled forward and chin downward.

Stress affects the body by influencing hormones.  If a tense situation occurs, hormones are released controlling heart rate, adrenaline, and breathing and getting the body ready for “flight or fight”.  The release of these hormones can result in a wide range of reactions to stress such as a decrease in testosterone (which decreases the ability to build or keep muscle) or increase in cortisol (which is often seen as fat around the midsection).  It can also cause fatigue, loss of appetite, pains in the body including headaches, lowered immune system, stomach problems, insomnia, and muscle tension.

Stress also affects our mind by causing us anxiety, restlessness, lack of emotion, inability to focus, anger, sadness and depression.  These type thoughts influence behavior and can lead to over/under eating, drug or alcohol use and social withdrawal.

Fortunately, stress can be controlled! We can decide to think in a way that will yield a positive outcome.  When you start to get control over something, no matter how small, you have a foundation of success to build upon.  When you adopt an optimistic attitude, organize yourself and tasks and work towards some type of end goal, you are able to get a handle over stress.  Some additional ways to manage stress include:

  • Get good, non-interrupted sleep
  • Exercise-running, weight training, any physical activity that makes you feel good
  • Find a support system- getting help from others, talking to a friend or loved one
  • Nutrition-eat foods with omega oils, include greens and nuts. Stay away from refined flours and sugars
  • Relaxation-yoga, meditation, deep breathing
  • Find a Hobby
  • Use a Planner-prioritize and make check lists
  • Listen to music
  • Play with a pet
  • Acupuncture

Changing our mindset can do wonders on combating the effects of stress on ourselves.  Instead of thinking of stress as a threat, view it as a challenge.  Instead of pressure, see it as an opportunity.  Instead of it being debilitating, see it as energizing.  All in all, by focusing on possibilities instead of problems, we change how we see things and can change our life for the better.

Dr Greg is an active resident of Twin Creeks and his background is in acupuncture, health psychology, and chiropractic. He is with CA Acupuncture and Chiropractic Clinic located at 1101 Raintree Circle, Suite # 288, and can be reached for questions or appointments by phoning 972-747-0928.

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