Let’s talk about how in the world we are expected to still eat healthy when we are
having a date night with our main squeeze. I am the first person to understand how tempting it is to indulge when eating out. I mean, how am I supposed to turn down a margarita with dinner when the picture looks so good!?! You spend 2 hours getting ready for your honey (coming from a female obviously, you men just enjoy your 10 minutes it takes you) because you’re finally going on a date after 4 weeks of a chaotic, non stop schedule, and the last thing you want to think about is resisting temptation and “being good” with your food choices. So the goal is to help make those decisions for you without you feeling like you are sacrificing and letting you focus on the important things in life.
Look at the menu ahead of time. This helps with so much. First of all, you are usually starving by the time you finally get to dinner (thanks to that 2 hours it takes to create perfection), which is the absolute worst time to make food decisions. Cravings are at an all time high and you will likely order more than you actually need. Planning out your selection before getting to the restaurant will give you plenty of time to check out all of the options instead of selecting the first thing that sounds good so you can get back to the convo with your other half. Knowing what you will be eating while getting ready will also allow you to look forward to what you have chosen instead of being disappointed the second you tell the waiter, “A salad with the dressing on the side, please” as a last resort.
Salad is NOT your only option! Yes, does the majority of a menu include something either deep fried, breaded, or full of sugar? Absolutely. But there are still plenty of dishes you can choose from outside of the salad list. Remember: WHOLE FOODS. So looking for the dishes with meat, vegetables, and a complex carb. My go to: 6 oz. sirloin, house salad, and a baked potato. Who doesn’t love a good steak that you didn’t have to cook yourself!?! Other great options are the salmon and chicken plates. But don’t completely count out the salads either. Some restaurants have some very creative AND filling salads that include a meat and even a complex carb such as quinoa on it. Vegetables are almost always an option to add to any dish as well (unless you’re at McDonald’s), so do not be afraid to ask for substitutions! You have to put your health ahead of annoying your waiter.
Don’t torture yourself. DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT, let something unhealthy come with your meal to the table with the mindset “I just won’t eat it”. That is corporal punishment and will likely not work. Sitting there with a plate full of fries or a flaky dinner roll right in front of you that you “won’t eat” is not a good idea for anyone. If you don’t want to eat it, tell them not to bring it. Simple as that. One of the common things both myself and Bryan (boyfriend) like to do is order a burger but just ask for it on lettuce, no bun, and substitute the fries for a salad or vegetable. Restaurants can have some really good burgers, especially the ones loaded with guacamole and jalapenos so don’t deprive yourself of that greatness, just do it smart.
Decide between alcohol and dessert. Liquor, unlike beer or wine, does not contain carbs because of the distillation process. However, it’s the mixers that go with the liquor that get ya. They’re full of sugar and calories. So a few things here: First, plan your day out accordingly if you know you will be incorporating either alcohol or dessert into your date night. Things like avoiding fruit and other carbs are a great way to compensate. Second, when it comes to making your alcohol selection, try to stick with red wine or stout beer as they both have anti-inflammatory effects. With liquor, ask for mixers such as tonic or soda water and using lime to add flavor instead of loads of syrup. Try to limit yourself to no more than 2 drinks as well. When it comes to dessert, plan to share ONE. Find desserts that don’t have too many bad ingredients, so either something with just sugar, or just flour, rather than getting the fried donut with ice cream on top. Sorbets, fruit platters, or simply just not doing the ice cream with the fudge brownie are what you should look for. It’s all about give and take.
Share a meal. Restaurants are known for serving 2-3x a normal portion. How else can they charge $19.00 a plate?? So rather than letting your stomach judge when you are full or trying to gage when you are halfway through the plate, just share! Ask for that extra plate with pride. An added bonus here: cheaper bill! You’re welcome men ;)
Do salads for an appetizer. When you are starving, you just want food now. The first place we turn to on a menu then is the appetizer section which includes LOTS of cheese, deep fried breading, and calories. Starting with a salad is the trick here. It’s quick, full of nutrients, and starts your healthy decisions off right from the beginning. So skip the calamari and mozzarella sticks peeps.
Hopefully this was able to shed some light on how to prevent date night from blowing the gains you worked for all week long. I am all about compromise and accommodation. Health should never be a nuisance so finding ways to adapt it to your life will allow it to become a lifestyle that you don’t even have to think twice about. When living healthy is inconvenient or restrictive you are waaaayyyyy more likely to fall off the wagon. Don’t let that be you. You deserve better. You deserve health.
Like my approach? Want a healthy lifestyle that fits your life and schedule? This is my jam you guys so do not put it off another day. Call now to book a consult 623-551-6677. I want a HEALTHIER and HAPPIER you!
*AZ Chiropractic License Pending*
Well, I figured since we put my mom in the spotlight last week it was only right to give my father a turn. A 58-year-old gear head who was an at-home dad for me and my sisters until I was 5. Paint that picture in your head ;) Ask either of my sisters or myself what our favorite childhood memory with dad is and undoubtedly you would get the answer “the chocolate shakes!” It was the highlight of every night in the Knight house. Dad would set my little sisters up on the counter and I would push my chair over to supervise the process. Add a little ice cream, splash of milk, and of course, the PERFECT amount of Hershey’s chocolate syrup. After blending he would get our “chocolate shake cups” out (yes we had specific cups and someone always ended up crying over not getting the blue one). It was the perfect ending to each night sitting in the living room all together enjoying the only thing we thought dad could cook. Skip ahead about 12 years, and my dad is diagnosed with Type II diabetes. Hmmmm…wonder where that came from???
In a society where eating is considered a hobby or entertainment, you really have to step back from it all to evaluate the mistakes we are making. Eating is all fun and games until your jeans don’t button or you have to give yourself daily insulin injections to manage your diabetes. As of last year, the average American consumed 19.5 teaspoons of sugar a day! But for those of you who don’t drink pop daily or snack on cookies, you probably think you didn’t contribute to that statistic, but think again. Most of our sugar is consumed in things we would never even think to contain sugar! Things such as salad dressings, ketchup, low fat foods, granola bars, and soy milk. We live in a time where reading the ingredients label is absolutely crucial to our health. So for my diabetics out there, or those of you who vow to never become diabetic, here are a few tips and tricks:
Recognize that disguised sugar. Fun fact: there are 61 different names for sugar! Holy cow! So instead of boring you with that extensive list, here are a few of the most common ones: high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, dextrose, maltose, maltodextrin (see what they did there?) rice syrup, cane sugar, and of course your artificial sweeteners such as splenda, aspartame, sucralose and acesulflame. My advice here: jot these down in your phone somewhere that way you always have it with you when grocery shopping!
Low fat foods. This is a whole blog topic in itself so I’ll try to keep it short and sweet (lol). If they are taking the fat out of a food, they have to replace it with something! And that replacement is…you guessed it, SUGAR. Low fat foods are not your friend, just trust me on that until I get a chance to thoroughly explain exactly why in a couple weeks.
Increase fiber with sugar. Soluble fiber’s general effect of slowing down the digestive process means that the carbohydrates we eat take longer to be broken down into glucose. As a result, the release of glucose into the blood after eating tends to occur slower and over a longer period of time following a high-fiber meal. So this prevents glucose from rising to an extreme peak all at once, and therefore decreasing the stress placed on our glucose metabolism system to push out more insulin to accommodate. Note that I said SOLUBLE fiber. Insoluble fiber is used to push things through the digestive system rather than slow down the digestive process. A good rule of thumb is if it is the harder part of the fruit or vegetable to chew, it is likely insoluble. So the skin of an apple would be a great example, where as the inside of an apple is soluble fiber. Soluble fiber can also be acquired from foods such as seeds, peas, lentils, most fruits and vegetables, and as a supplement called pysllium. This also explains why fruit juice is actually not healthy like we think. Just drinking the juice of the fruit without the fiber of the entire fruit that gets left behind, you end up just drinking liquid sugar.
Info contributed by https://www.rd.com/health/conditions/high-fiber-diet-diabetes/
Supplement with magnesium and gymnema sylvestre. Both of these have been found to help with glucose control by slowing the release of glucose into the blood as well as helping your body manage influxes of sugar on its own. As I mentioned in last week’s post, herbs and botanicals are known for taking a little longer to show an effect, but when the effect occurs, it is a fix and not just a patch on the problem. So supplement up!
Eat your sugar and carbs early in the day. This gives your body time to use it rather than store it. When it comes to managing my fruit intake (yes fruit sugar counts as sugar) I always save it for the end of the meal for 2 reasons, 1. I can’t get “too full” for my vegetables. I use fruit as a treat so if I finish my broccoli, I get the reward. 2. Growing up with a chocolate shake night cap, I always NEED something sweet to finish a meal (I know it’s a WANT, but who are you, my mother!?). Terrible habit for sure, but that’s why I prefaced this whole thing with my story! That has been my biggest goal to tackle while doing 8 Weeks to Wellness right now, allowing myself the fruit dessert after breakfast and lunch, but cutting it out after dinner.
Stick to whole foods. This is the advice I give to everyone, not just diabetics, so no one is exempt! Our ancestors survived on food they either grew or caught and I can promise you that back then, there were nowhere near the amount of diseases we have today and obesity was not a thing (probably because all they had to wear were pieces of animal fur and leaves over their goods). But once you adopt this way of eating, the picture becomes so much easier. One ingredient foods that were either hunted, caught, grown, or picked. You can accomplish this by staying on the perimeter of the grocery store and not drifting into the center aisles. You will hit your produce, meat, and some dairy then BAM! Grocery shopping is done! Remember: if it reserved its spot on a center aisle shelf, it has something in it that makes it last for months.
I hope this is able to give you some insight on how consumed our world has become with sugar and maybe relieve some of the anxiety that comes with revamping your lifestyle. Every great journey begins with a step so anything you start to change and improve on is a step in the right direction. If you’re anything like me, I do best with direction and being held accountable, so if this is what you need, schedule a consult with us here at Back to Health of Anthem. Our mission is to help as many as possible to achieve their maximum health and we will do all that we can to find a plan that works best for you and your needs. You can reach us at 623-551-6677. Don’t keep your health on the back burner any longer!
*AZ Chiropractic License Pending*
My entire life I have grown up with a mother who has had high blood pressure. As young kids, whenever we were misbehaving or simply driving her crazy, she would always say “Stop it, you’re raising my blood pressure” which would usually work as we knew that was dangerous for her. Now that I think about it, she may have taken advantage of that a few times, but hey, whatever works, right?
She has struggled with hypertension for practically her whole life, ever since she was 18. So young! But anyone who knows my mom knows she’s an intense woman. It’s Gale’s way or the highway. The woman is tough as nails and is nothing short of Super Mom. But having that personality makes her a high-stress individual. It also doesn’t help that she has been one of those people who could pretty much eat whatever she wanted and not have anything to show for it. So, a less-than-satisfactory diet added to the mix has not helped the situation. Once year 40 rolled around, the “nothing to show for it” part started to change but her lifestyle didn’t. With a current blood pressure of 180/95, she is obviously on blood pressure medication (yes that is her blood pressure ON MEDICATION). At this point, it is probably no surprise that I have made it my mission to holistically eliminate diseases such as hypertension.
So, my goal today is to share with you some of the ways high blood pressure can be tackled. This could be to either avoid becoming medicated or work your way off of the medication you’re currently on.
Get rid of the inflammation in your diet. As I mentioned in my last post, hypertension is when the force of blood, pushing against vessel walls, is too high. This added pressure causes the heart to work too hard and blood vessels to function less effectively. So with that already going on, why would be want to “inflame” those vessels even more, therefore requiring that blood to be pumped even harder through the arteries?? We put our bodies in a chronic state of inflammation by eating foods made or covered in flour, sugar, or oil. So pretty much everything you’re currently eating. Fries, buns, donuts, cereal, cookies. Even your whole grain breads and “sugar free” items are inflammatory. We want to stick to a whole food diet, one ingredient items. Grass fed meats (yes red meat is fine!), wild caught fish, fresh vegetables and fruits, sweet potatoes, quinoa, nuts, and good oils like olive, coconut, and avocado. This is how you FUEL your body instead of just filling it. Plus, you won’t be taking in anything that sticks to the inside of those vessels (cholesterol) that further narrows the blood flow path.
Increase cardio. The biggest struggle with this is increasing cardio without raising your blood pressure too high. My advice: start small and work your way up. If your current cardio includes carrying groceries inside or walking upstairs to your bed each night, you will want to start with something simple such as speed walking around the block. After a week or two, work your way up to being able to jog one lap with a speed walk lap before and after. Another option would be swimming or cycling (either stationary or on a real bike). Strength training is another great option. Building muscle while conditioning your heart is perfect. There are so many exercises you can do, either at the gym or in your living room, that there is really no excuse to not do it. These are great options for those who have knee or hip complications and also allows for a lighter impact on your heart than running 3 miles up a mountain on day 1. I can’t say it enough, START SMALL! Anything over what you normally do will have an impact. We all have to start somewhere. I highly recommend our Function Training Center here at Back to Health of Anthem. Our trainers are professionals who pride themselves on individually building workouts tailored for each person and their goals. No two bodies are the same and that is clearly understood by our staff. No sense in doing the work yourself trying to design the perfect workout when you might not really know what you’re doing in the first place. Instruction and accountability are key!
REFUEL your pill container with supplements. We all know those pill organizers that have the S M T W T F S markings on them we’ve seen our grandparents use for years. They’re for “old people” I know, but I have to admit, I bought one a few months ago and it was the best $3 spent! Our grandmas have the right idea. Why get 6 different bottles out each morning to take all of your vitamins when you could do that just once a week?? Plus, it keeps you accountable each day so when you forget one day, it’s obvious. If you read my first blog post, you know the 6 essential vitamins everyone should be taking. But with hypertension, we need to add a couple more such as Hawthorn and Garlic supplements. My botanicals professor in Chiro school had super high blood pressure in college so he started taking hawthorn faithfully. After 6 months, it was gone! That’s the great thing about botanicals and herbs, they CURE the problem, not treat the symptoms. As always, consult your Chiropractor before starting or increasing any vitamin regiments. If you're not sure what you may or may not need, in depth Blood Analysis is always a good idea to determine your needs.
Increase specific foods in your diet and decreasing others. Some great foods known for reducing blood pressure are celery, garlic, pomegranate, flaxseed (ground), and beets. Of course, you want to also focus on eliminating salt. Adding salt to food, or foods naturally high in salt like cured or processed meats are the biggest culprits. In school, they always said, “where sodium goes, water flows” so if we have an excessive amount of sodium in our bodies, we retain water to dilute it down. The more water we retain, the higher volume of blood we have which further increases the stress on our arteries. So this is why it is always the first recommendation from a doctor to a hypertensive patient.
Make relaxation part of your day. Even if it is just 10 minutes a day sitting in your room with the door locked so your kids can’t barge in, it will make a difference. I recommend finding a relaxation playlist on Spotify or Pandora or even a worship station. Find something that helps remove the thoughts of everything going on in your life and lets you focus on you. Concentrate on deep breathing and maintaining good posture while sitting so you can have the maximum oxygen intake. Whether you are just sitting there silently or spending the time in prayer/listening, this is a vital part in decreasing stress on your body.
Use essential oils and diffusers. My mom received 2 diffusers for Christmas, with plenty of essential oils for decreasing blood pressure and stress from me specifically to use this. Never underestimate the power of natural herbs! Some great oils to use/combine are lavender, frankincense, bergamot, clary sage, ylang ylang, and jasmine. My suggestion is to have a diffuser with one or many of these oils right next to your bed so it helps you relax before going to sleep but also works while you are sleeping.
High blood pressure can be a very dangerous condition if left uncontrolled or even controlled with medication. If you know you are struggling with high blood pressure and want to make a change the right way, call us to schedule a consult at 623-551-6677 today! We look forward to assisting you in the path to a healthier you!
*AZ Chiropractic License Pending*
Ok, let’s talk about these new high blood pressure guidelines because it’s literally giving me high blood pressure just thinking about it. Back in November, the American Heart Association released a new standard for what constitutes “high blood pressure” a.k.a. hypertension. A little preface here, normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg. Prior to the recent change, 130/85 mmHg was considered “pre-hypertensive” meaning you don’t have high blood pressure yet but you are on your way so make some changes. Once 140/90 mmHg was reached, you were officially diagnosed with hypertension and likely put on medication to control it. Well these standards have now been re-figured so that 130/80 mmHg is no longer pre-hypertension but officially hypertension. Following me here? Kind of like an 8 is the new 4 in pant sizes for women or orange is the new pink (if you get that reference we can totally be friends). Let’s look at the complete new scale to make this clear:
120-129 mmHg ELEVATED
130-139 mmHg HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE (stage 1)
80-89 mmHg (Medication prescribed)
>140 mmHg HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE (stage 2)
>90 mmHg (Medication prescribed)
Now to be fair to all parties, I want to clarify that when you are diagnosed with stage 1 high blood pressure, your overall risk of cardiovascular disease is calculated and will contribute to the decision of whether or not you need medication. Meaning, things like your cholesterol levels, smoking history, and diabetes status also play a role in the medication push rather than just a simple reading of a blood pressure cuff making the decision. So what does this change mean in the grand scheme of things? Well a few things:
✓ We are catching high blood pressure earlier and requiring stricter guidelines to be considered healthy. If you aren’t given a specific diagnosis when you go in for your yearly check up then you’re obviously healthy, right? So many times, we are not even aware that we are on a path to acquiring a disease until it is too late. “Well last time you were in your blood pressure was 139/89 mmHg which wasn’t hypertensive yet so you were not told anything. But now it is 143/90 which is very dangerous for your heart and body so we need to put you on blood pressure medication.” Would have been nice to know Doc! So these lower standards may help in stopping the elevation in blood pressure before it becomes too serious of a problem for your body.
✓ MAYBE we will see less heart attacks and strokes. It is believed that high blood pressure for an extended period of time leads to heart attacks and strokes. So this is really the main reason the American Heart Association has altered its original statistics. By having people on medication to reduce elevated blood pressure sooner, it is their hope it will in turn prevent the disasters in the long run. We won't know if they achieve this goal for a few years in that case, but if there are other lifestyle factors (which likely there are) that are causing these cardiovascular events and strokes, this will all have been for nothing.
✗ More medication will be handed out. Before, with a blood pressure of 128/80, you would be warned that you are on your way to official hypertension which will warrant medication to manage, so we need to make some lifestyle changes right now to prevent this. With the new standards, this blood pressure level is likely to send you straight to the pharmacy. Big shocker, right?!? But remember though, I mentioned earlier that when you are diagnosed with stage 1 high blood pressure, your overall risk of cardiovascular disease is assessed and is one of a few factors that will contribute to the decision of whether you need medication. Things like your cholesterol levels, smoking history, and diabetes status will also be considered, rather than just a simple reading of a blood pressure cuff leading to the decision.
✗ More diagnoses to add to the list. How often do we, as chiropractors, see a past medical history form with nothing checked on it other than a stiff neck or low back pain? Well I had a 12 year old in here the other day with one but that’s about it. Today’s medical system is so quick to slap a diagnosis on someone along with a prescription to fix it rather than just stating what it is: you are too stressed emotionally and those extra 35lbs you’re carrying is adding too much stress on your heart, so let us help you fix that. It is proven that when someone is told they have an official diagnosis they feel like they now have an answer to the way they have been feeling and it becomes an excuse they sit on. “Well I have high blood pressure so I need to take medication” rather than “I have high blood pressure, so can you hold the salt on that broccoli”. We need to attack our health with a proactive approach rather than a reactive one.
I want to take a minute to educate you on why high blood pressure is such a big deal in the first place. Hypertension occurs when the force of blood pushing against vessel walls is too high. This added pressure causes the heart to work too hard and blood vessels to function less effectively. Over time, the stress damages the tissues within arteries, which can further damage the heart and circulatory system.
Often called the “silent killer” because there are usually no obvious symptoms, hypertension accounts for more heart disease and stroke deaths than almost all other preventable causes. It’s second only to smoking (American Heart Association). Hopefully that gives you a better understanding of why hypertension is a hot topic and why our team here at Back to Health of Anthem has truly made it our mission to make society healthier overall, not just help with your low back pain.
If you are interested in calculating your cardiovascular risk currently, for an inside look at what your doctor is using to evaluate your blood pressure status, check out this link!
The biggest mistake you can make is putting your health in someone else’s hands, even a doctor’s. The first step in making a lifestyle change is recognizing the problem yourself and committing to making a change. Come in to see us at Back to Health of Anthem for direction and support on the journey to a healthier, happier you. Give us a call at 623-551-6677 and set up a consult today!
*AZ Chiropractic License Pending*
As I am starting my 4th week here at Back to Health of Anthem, I figured it is about time to officially introduce myself. So hello! I am Dr. Courtney Knight, the new associate chiropractor at Back to Health. My Arizona license is pending so you won’t see me adjusting patients yet, but I have been plenty busy training with Dr. Hester, working on new ideas for the upcoming year, and transitioning from being a student to an actual practicing doc! For those of you who don’t know, I just graduated from National University of Health Sciences in St. Petersburg, FL in December and I have been living in Arizona for less than a month. The past 30 days have been full of many changes for me, so to say it’s been a whirlwind would be an understatement. I am slowly getting into a routine in our new home here in beautiful Arizona. You may be wondering, how in the world did I end up all of the way out here from Florida? Well here’s the story:
As a native Michigander, I attended the University of Michigan for my undergraduate degree… Go Blue! But 21 years in the tundra was enough for me. So instead of attending the Chiropractic program in Chicago (where it is even colder than Michigan!), I enrolled in National’s campus in St. Petersburg, Florida. My younger twin sisters, who were about to graduate high school, were on board with going with me to Florida where they would attend the University of South Florida. It was truly the best decision we ever made. Getting to learn how to live on our own in a completely new state was never short of interesting but the bond we created through it all was priceless. The Knight girls took on Florida full force and achieved everything we set out to do. But 3 years in the sunshine state was enough for us, so they decided to attend Palmer School of Chiropractic in Iowa (yes they went back to the freezing cold and yes, they are going to be chiropractors too!) and I saw my chance to finally move to my dream home of Arizona.
We grew up always vacationing out here because my aunt and her family live in Phoenix and I have yet to find anything like it. For once, school was not dictating where I had to live so I talked to my cousins, Jason and Janelle Zeller, about possibly connecting me with their chiropractor since they speak so highly of him. That is where Dr. Hester and Back to Health of Anthem came into the picture. I flew out here in August, met him, fell in love with his office and all they were providing for their patients, and lucky for me, Dr. Hester felt I was the missing piece. So there’s the story! Oh and one last point, probably the most important of them all, my Florida grown boyfriend of 2 years, Bryan, committed to chasing this dream with me as well so I have him here to love and support me through it all! (Thank you God for that answered prayer!)
Over the next year, I hope to share a variety of things on this blog including my passion for Nutrition, how to make being healthy convenient for your schedule and family, and also the random learning experiences I’ll now have living in the desert. For example, I saw MY FIRST SCORPIAN last week. OMG! Obviously I was paranoid for the next 4 days at home. Checking under the covers each night, tapping out my shoes to make sure none made their way in there, and for once in my life, not leaving my clothes on the floor. Scorpions are a lot of work! But don’t worry, we had our house sprayed so we should be good for the next couple of months. Hallelujah!
I also decided I needed to check out this hiking thing all of you Arizonians talk about all the time. So to Daisy Mountain we went but let me tell ya, I’m not sure I’m cut out for that mountain life. Granted, I definitely didn’t do it right. I wore my cute Nike Tanjun tennis shoes that have about an inch and a half of a platform because all I was worried about was the pictures I wanted to take when we got to the top. Not a good plan! I spent my entire hike looking down to evaluate each step to ensure I didn’t twist an ankle. Plus, I was overly concerned about getting tan lines because I didn’t plan ahead on that either. Going into it, I thought this would just be a 1-2 hour little activity and we would have the rest of our Sunday to run all of the errands I planned, but as the 2 hour mark hit, we had just reached that wooden post thing everyone talks about (which I knew meant we still had a while to go). It was at this point that I threw in the towel. It still took about an hour just to get back to the car so I was more than ready. And I’m sure by then Bryan was ready too because I was not very good at hiding my discontent with the experience over the past 2 hours. So basically, I need to go shopping for proper shoes and attire before I attempt this hiking thing again. If anyone has any tips, don’t hesitate to help a girl out when you see me in the office!
Well, that’s all for now. Make sure to come in the office to say hi and check in each week for a new post from me. Wouldn’t want to miss my latest Arizona and adult life lessons ;)
We all grew up taking our Flintstones vitamins each morning with our sugar-filled fruit loops and orange juice. If you were like my family, this really only occurred on the weekends because that was the only time we were actually able to all sit down together for breakfast. During the weekdays, it was a Pop-Tart on the way out of the house and on our way to school so vitamins were not even a thought. As we’ve gotten older, life has not slowed down any, but we are gradually becoming more and more unhealthy as a society. With the new year here, I am sure you have a conscious (or subconscious) goal of being healthier this year. With that goal in mind, there are likely 3 actions you are looking to take: 1. Eat better 2. Exercise 3. Take vitamins. The first 2 are each a beast in themselves and take more than 30 seconds to do daily, so we’ll save those topics for another post. But right now, I want to tackle vitamins. Being 24, I think I may have grown out of the Flintstones chewables so what should I be taking? Do I need the same things as my 57 year old father? Can I buy Women’s Daily and just not tell him it’s for females? Or should I buy the Men’s Daily too? Is that one vitamin enough?
This is what I want to simplify and I’ll save you the hours (more like years of schooling) researching the topic and clear it up in 6 answers.
Multivitamin: We only have so much time in a day to eat, and when we do eat, we usually aren’t consuming enough of the right things to fulfill our body’s daily vitamin fuel tank. So instead of trying to eat 9 cups of broccoli daily, just take a multivitamin. When looking for a quality multi, you want to look for Vitamin E included as mixed tocopherols meaning it’s an E complex, not just one kind of Vitamin E. Also make sure it does not have any added synthetic colors, fillers, or ingredients that producers add to increase shelf life. We don’t need anything “storing” on our internal shelves because that means we aren’t using it!
Vitamin D: You could permanently live out in the middle of the desert with very minimal clothes on 24 hours a day and you still wouldn’t have enough vitamin D. It has been proven that vitamin D prevents so many conditions such as depression, fatigue, prostate/breast cancer, skin carcinoma, bone and hair loss, and so many more. Vitamin D is crucial to our longevity. And chances are if you’re already taking it, you’re not taking enough. The recommended daily amount established by the FDA is far too low. You should be taking in 5,000-10,000 IU DAILY!
B complex: There are multiple B vitamins in a B complex including B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and B12. Talk about more for your money! Individually, and collectively, B vitamins assist in brain development, mood management, nerve functions, red blood cell productions, and energy. If you are a female looking to become pregnant within the next year, you need to make B vitamins a must as this will help prevent birth defects such as spina bifida.
Calcium/Magnesium: These 2 are good buddies when it comes to our bodily functions. They are both co-factors that assist in our cycles that produce and store energy, along with maintaining bone health, nerve function, regulating heartbeat, blood pressure, and blood sugar (that’s you diabetics!)
Omega-3 Fish Oil: How often do we hear of someone in their 50’s having a heart attack? It has basically become a normal thing now…how scary is that?!? The most important muscle in our body and it’s one of the first things to be damaged at a young age. Omega-3 fatty acids are the healthy fats that help our “bad” cholesterol (LDL) so it is no surprise that fish oil will be the biggest help in increasing heart health.
Probiotic: There are good bugs, and bad bugs, and you likely have plenty of bad bugs in your gut from the food we eat. Having an improper bacteria balance in our gut leads to so much, but most commonly would be indigestion, constipation, and bloating. With a probiotic, it replenishes the gut with “good bugs” to (a) rid of the bad bugs, and (b) help us properly digest the food we put into it. If you think your daily bowl of yogurt is doing the job, think again. Even if you are eating full fat, PLAIN greek yogurt (which tastes like sour cream by the way) you are likely putting fruit in it to make it somewhat enjoyable or are buying a flavored kind to achieve the same, which in either case, the probiotic effects are being canceled out due to the additions. No sense in choking down a cup of that every day while also adding the additional calories and dairy into your system. Don’t wait another day. Go get a LIVE probiotic now!
When it comes to buying supplements, you will quickly find there are a bazillion different brands at a variety of prices. The goal is to find the purest form at the highest potency. A few brands I prefer are NOW foods, Metagenics, and Anabolic Labs but there are many great options to choose from. My biggest advice when it comes to vitamins: BE CONSISTENT! Find a time of day that you will always remember to take them and have them pre-sorted out so you don’t have the inconvenience of getting out 6 bottles each time. Convenience is everything.
*EveryBODY is different, so consult your Chiropractor before starting or increasing any vitamin regiments. If you're not sure what you may or may not need, in depth Blood Analysis is always a good idea to determine your needs. At Back to Health of Anthem, your health is our priority and we can help point you in the right direction. Give us a call at 623-551-6677 and set up a consult.
Dr. Courtney Knight
*Az Chiropractic License Pending*
Greetings from NYC!
When we left Phoenix it was 80 degrees and flip flops were acceptable footwear. We arrived in snowy New York where a white Christmas seems inevitable...and flip flops are definitely not recommended. Ha!
This trip was the first time I pulled out my winter clothes this year. Which are too big! That seems to be a common issue these days. This last week my workout shorts started to fall off during my pull ups in the gym. It’s a great problem to have - at least that’s what Chad and Lynette said, trying to make me feel less self conscious. I love being more slender - I don’t love mooning the gym.
I’m nearing the end of my 8 weeks to wellness journey and the results, at least in my clothes, have been a rewarding way to end 2017.
I’m looking forward to the next milestones in my health journey - 52 weeks of focus in 2018!!!
Xo - EM
Dr. Courtney Knight is a recent Doctor of Chiropractic graduate of National University of Health Sciences in St. Petersburg, Florida and received her undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan in 2013. Go Blue! Dr. Knight was born and raised in a small town in southwest Michigan where her sense of community and wellness drove her to pursue a career in the holistic health field. She saw the inconsistency in what society was being told was "healthy" and desired the research on how to truly correct one's diet to fuel their body rather than feed cravings. Dr. Knight focused her studies on the anti-inflammatory diet, discovering that our bodies are in a state of chronic inflammation due to the food we are eating which in turn, is the underlying cause of so many diseases plaguing our world today.... see more
Dr. Brian Hester, originally from Alabama, graduated from Life University in 1999 with his Doctorate of Chiropractic. He moved to Anthem, Arizona in 2003 and opened his wellness center. Dr. Hester's mission is to provide people in the North Phoenix area, with the tools they need to identify stressors in their life and the underlying causes of their health challenges. With Dr. Hester as a health partner, patients can make positive lifestyle changes and take control of their lives...... see more
CONTACT & LOCATION
41930 N Venture Dr #110
Anthem, AZ 85086