Not Just for Sick People

Chiropractic is not just for sick people. 

It’s for people who want to be their best….

in health

in sports

in moods

in family relations

in energy

in memory

in mental acuity

in physical dexterity

in coordination

in income earning potential

in life!

Symptoms are the last sign of disease, not the first. Health prevention and protection means investing in  yourself! Investing time and money in the products and services that support your body towards functioning  better.

Each adjustment balances your musculo-skeletal system.  Each adjustment  gives your circulation a boost.   Each adjustment gives your body the opportunity to function without interference to the most powerful coordinating system ever known.  Each adjustment reconnects your brain and your body.

Its why headaches stop, digestion improves, previously immobile children start to walk, and why skin rashes clear up. Its not a treatment for any ailment, but a way to allow the body to function the way it was designed to.

Its why more people than ever are choosing Chiropractic care not only to feel better, but to function better in every aspect of their health. Your health affects every part of your life…every job you have, every sport you play, every relationship you have with your friends, co-workers and loved ones.  Make choices that take care of your body – its the only one you get!

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Healthy Holidays

The words stress and holidays seem to go together, and yet that also seems rather ironic. 60% of North Americans say they stress they ‘won’t get everything done’ before Christmas. One of the most frequent questions I hear lately is “Are you ready for Christmas?” and “Have you finished all your shopping?”. The stress doesn’t just apply to our emotional states, our bodies are also stressed by the foods we eat, minimal exercise and too little sleep. What I see in my practice is a higher level of stress and anxiety in people as well.

Is that what the holidays are supposed to be about? Of course not. It may sound cliché but we say the same things every year, and yet nothing changes unless we make a change. Doing the same things and expecting different results is…INSANITY!  I challenge you to consider the following points and make some changes in your life and for your family this holiday season…

Socialize Wisely – We all need social connections but during the holiday season many people are ‘overstimulated’, ‘over-committed’, and ‘overwhelmed’ with too many events. Be choosy about how you spend your social time. Be assertive and learn to say no to situations that will upset you.  Decline invitations (if you can do so without grossly offending the invitee) that create unnecessary emotional stress, or will simply burden your schedule and shortchange you of sleep.

Reach Out – At the other end of the social spectrum is loneliness.  With changing family dynamics, different living arrangements, and simple geography for some people, many are left alone during the holidays.  If you feel lonely or isolated consider getting involved in different activities, volunteering your time at seniors homes, food banks or other organizations geared towards helping others. The rewards will be far greater than just the social stimulation.

Exercise – Quite simply, physical activity makes every system in your body work better. Instead of taking a break from your exercise routine, keep it up! Or consider getting started! It doesn’t have to wait until January and your resolution of getting in shape or losing weight.  The fact is, exercise is simply something most people have to build into their lives, work into their schedules. You will always find something better to do with your time! Exercise helps relieve stress and prevents weight gain.  Moving your body will always give you a boost, even just a some stretching or a brisk walk will rejuvenate your body and mind.

Eat Regularly & Prepare for Outings – If you are going to  a party or dinner, don’t starve yourself all day in anticipation.  Doing so will  slow your metabolism, leave you ravenous and more likely to overeat later in the evening. Instead, eat small meals or snacks throughout the day and you’ll be less likely to over-indulge when you are out. If you are planning on consuming alcohol be sure to increase your intake of water to compensate for the dehydrating effects.

Take a Breather – It IS the season for family, friends, and being on ‘holiday’ so don’t forget to take the time to relax and indulge in activities you enjoy! Make time for yourself too, often time alone is what is easily neglected with busy social schedules or family commitments.  Spending just 15 minutes alone, without distractions, may refresh you and change your perspective if you are having a frantic day.  Do something that clears your mind, slows your breathing and restores inner calm.  Journal, listen to music, take a brisk walk and look at the lights, read a book, whatever interests YOU and gets you in a quiet place for a small bit of time.

Rethink Gifting – There are many ways to show affection and pamper the ones you love without purchasing ‘things’. Consider giving gifts of ‘experiences’ – trips to the spa, movies, sporting or cultural events, gift certificates to restaurants etc. Time together is more valuable with the ones we love than any object, and you’ll get the benefit too! Take the stress away from shopping and get creative giving gifts of the heart in other ways.

The holidays don’t mean you should take a holiday from taking care of yourself. Make good choices for you and your family and you will enjoy the holiday season and start the new year in good health. You CAN indulge, celebrate, and still feel good in January!

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Chiropractic & Fever

Caring for children is by far the highlight of everyday in my practice. I love watching the children grow, but I love watching the parents grow too! Our programs for children help parents learn about how to care for their family naturally, and offer guidance for many questions and parenting dilemmas that pop up.

“I thought I’d share a little something which means the world to me!  My son was at daycare on a very hot Monday.  When I picked him up at 4, he was acting kinda off.  All the other kids seemed fine. When I got home with him, I felt his head and he felt warm, but I figured it was the hot weather and thought little of it.  That night he did not sleep well, which is not normal for him.  In the morning I checked his temperature and it was 99 degrees.  I kept him home Tuesday and monitored him all day.  He was off all day and needed mommy.  By Tuesday night his temperature was 100, so putting him to bed, I gave him infant advil. It helped him sleep, but he was restless. Wednesday morning, I checked his temperature and it had gone up to 102.  I called Telehealth and they told me that there was a virus going around infants and toddlers, and that it was a cold with a fever and that it could last up to three weeks.  They said that what I was doing was perfect and that if it gets any worse to call them back.  I knew you were working 3-6, so I called to book him in for an adjustment.  I knew it couldn’t do any harm.  The adjustment was obviously a surprise to him because he cried, but when I got him home, he was almost back to normal.  I thought I would check his temperature just to see what it was and I was floored!!  Twenty minutes after you adjusted him his temperature was back down to 98 degrees.   You’re awesome!!! This is twice now I thought I was going the ER but I’m so glad I came here first!”    MT

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Barefoot Bliss!

It all started innocently enough a few summers ago. In the practice one afternoon, my shoes hurt, so I took them off.  After adjusting a few people, however, I was, almost instantly, converted.  I felt stronger, more sure on my feet, grounded.  More purposeful and connected with each adjustment.

So as per most products, concepts,  new trends or fads….I experimented on myself, and did a bit of research before being ready to share my thoughts.

I am not a runner, but I have heard about barefoot running.  I believe strongly in the importance of children being barefoot, particularly in their toddler years when just learning to walk.

I asked some colleagues and was not surprised to find that many of them also adjust barefoot – the simple answer when I asked why? its more natural and the way we were designed! I was also surprised to learn so many people I adjust prefer being barefoot, finding it more comfortable.

Many health experts agree that bare is the healthiest state for your feet to be in.  Most shoes have no relation at all to the natural shape of the human foot.  It’s also been argued that most adult foot trouble would not exist if properly shaped shoes, or better yet, no shoes at all had been used during childhood.

Children who are encouraged to walk barefoot typically have:

– fewer instances of deformed toe

– greater foot flexibility

– greater ability to spread the toes

– denser muscles on the bottom of the feet

– greater agility than those who had never gone barefoot

– better hip rotation and more flexibility of leg muscles

– greater balance

– better posture, spinal balance and overall nerve system function

What are the benefits for you?

– natural shaped feet, including straighter toes free of corns, hammer toes, bunions and callouses in the wrong places

– well shaped legs resulting from a natural and balanced gait.

– a more natural motion, free of weight brought on by shoes

– prevention of blisters, ingrown toenails, and plantar warts

– better posture & spinal health!

It’s also been suggested that people who are barefoot tend to be less stressed and authoritative, leading to a more relaxed environment at both home and work. Many cultures believe that the positive energy of the earth, known as chi, prana, is absorbed through the soles of the feet. When you are walking barefoot your body is absorbing this positive energy, allowing you to think more clearly.

AND…there is evidence that the natural motion of barefoot positively affects brain function!!!

Other than the spine, the foot is the region of the body which contains the most proprioceptive sensory receptors, the distinctive nerve circuits that help your brain know where your body is in relation to the space around you.  Given this abundance of sensory information, the natural unrestricted movement of the feet is vital for overall neurological health!

I have happily embraced being barefoot as much as possible. Even though I do love shoes, I find myself wearing them more because I need to, not because I want to…and I kick them off as soon as I can.

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Being “Whole”

“Be really whole and all things will come to you.” ~ Lao Tzu

Wholeness? How do we interpret that? Be who you are, and love every part of yourself. Be aware of your surroundings and appreciate the simple things. Express yourself. Balance all parts of your life – work, play, relationships, personal time, exercise, reflection – so that you can be the fullest YOU possible.

Humans are complex beings made up of so much more than just tissues and cells, muscles, bones and skin.  Your thoughts, feelings, and beliefs about the world, and yourself, contribute to how your body functions.  We can think ourselves sick and think ourselves well.   Choose to believe you are living and functioning well.  For some of you that will be an easy task, for others it will take more effort, but you can only heal if you are willing to do so.

We know that the human body works better as a whole, and that every cell in your body depends on the health and function of the others to operate properly. The body is self-healing and self-regulating and depends on some coordination for it all to happen – that’s where your brain comes in!  Chiropractic adjustments remove interference from your spinal cord to allow  your brain to communicate with your body, so you can function as a whole being.

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Why Get Adjusted?

Recently, I asked some people in my practice why they were getting adjusted.  Here’s what I heard:

“It allows me to function without severe pain.  You helped me understand that this is what I need to stay healthy, the way you explained everything made sense…and I CAN WALK easier now! I used have periods of immobility because of the pain in my legs, but that never even crosses my mind anymore! I realize that coming here is simply a lifestyle choice I am going to make for as long as I live.”

“The adjustments are helping my body feel better.  When I am aligned my posture feels better, stronger and I just feel well.”

“Because Chiropractic care changed my life.”

“I work hard and use my body, and so I keep getting sore.  Although I don’t specifically remember how I was feeling last year, I definitely know it was A LOT worse and that my adjustments help me a ton.  I come here to keep the level of health I have achieved.”

“I came here with a sore shoulder but now I am sleeping better and my digestion has improved – who would have thought?!”

“My son used to get sick chronically and now, he never does – this is just part of our life now to keep us all strong and healthy, and I love how we don’t rely on medications anymore”

“I don’t know.  I didn’t come here with any problems, it just makes sense to me!”

Although each comment made me smile, the last one particularly struck me – investing time and money in something without really question why, simply because it resonated with her beliefs and desire to stay healthy!

Chiropractic is not a treatment for a disease but a way to support your body’s innate ability to function well.

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Why Chiropractic?

Chiropractic is not just an adjustment but an entire approach to managing your health, a way to support your body naturally from the inside-out.

A vertebral subluxation is the structural misalignment, or locking between two or more adjacent vertebrae, which causes nerve tissue irritation, and a resultant alteration in the normal mechanical, nerve and organ functions within the body.  When vertebral subluxations occur, there is an altered communication between the bodily systems.  This lack of harmony promotes sickness and a lesser quality of life.

Not just for the weak and wounded, chiropractic care is simply what your body needs to function properly.  Millions of people now choose to make spinal adjustments an integral part of their healthy lifestyle.  If you haven’t yet experienced a thorough neurological & biomechanical assessment from a Doctor of Chiropractic…perhaps its time?

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Detox Your Home…Why?

Chemicals have replaced bacteria and viruses as the main threat to health. The diseases we are beginning to see as the major causes of death in the latter part of (the 1900’s) and into the 21st century are diseases of chemical origin.”                                                                   – Dr. Dick Irwin, Toxicologist, Texas A&M University

We live in a chemical world. Over 5000 chemicals have entered daily use since WW II, many of them found in the products we use every day to clean and beautify our bodies and our homes. Scientists are increasingly concerned that long-term low-level exposures to chemicals create a variety of health risks. They also worry that we do not yet know the impact of living with the cocktail of chemicals found in household air and dust.  Testing for human health effects is normally done on single chemicals. However, in the real world, we are exposed to a daily variety of chemicals which create ‘chemical stress’ in the body and impact cellular function.  Quite simply, if you are breathing, absorbing, ingesting a variety of chemicals regularly, your body has to work harder to keep you functioning well.

Many people assume that “if it was bad for us, the government would not allow it to be sold” but we know that regulatory bodies are slow to act. Legislation governing pest control products was only amended in 2002, after over 30 years without change and review of pest control products is just beginning. Health Canada has recently added some chemicals to their ‘hot list’ of chemicals not permitted in cosmetics, but those ingredients had not been used for years and were added for the sake of ‘clarity’. Health Canada has been slow to restrict many chemicals currently in use, including identified or suspected carcinogens, hormone disrupters and reproductive toxins. The process of evaluating and regulating all the chemicals we use in our daily lives is going to be slow. And past experiences in regulating lead in gasoline, tobacco and lawn pesticides tell us that the companies which produce these products won’t take attempts to limit their use quietly.

In choosing the products we use on our bodies and in and around our homes WE are the ones in control. We can make informed choices for the sake of our own health and the health of our families. And in most cases, what is less toxic for us is also less toxic for the natural environment.

Making the move to less toxic products can seem overwhelming… but it doesn’t need to happen all at once and is likely easier than you think! Whether you make changes in a few areas or in many, you will be making positive choices for your life.

Ready to start? Grab one of the many books from the practice or keep watch for more posts with ideas and solutions.  Share your ideas with us too! Some of the most useful tips I have gained have come from others and not out of a book…

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Great Way to Get More Greens!

Dark green, leafy vegetables such as Kale, Collards, Spinach, and Chard are an abundant source of nutrients and should be consumed as much as possible.  Try using them in lieu of bread the next time you make a sandwich, creating a leaf ‘wrap’ in replacement of the bread.  If dining on these greens is new to you, consider starting with Spinach or Chard as they are the mildest flavoured (at least in my opinion!).

Once you have selected your filling, simply place it on the leaves, roll up similar to a tortilla and enjoy.  Another option if the leaves are small (or if you want to make several for an appetizer) is to place 1-2 TBsp of the filling on the leaves and serve…they should be easily eaten in a few bites!

Some suggested fillings:

~ sliced/shaved roast beef (from a reputable butcher…antibiotic and hormone-free)   + mustard + aged cheddar cheese

~ hummus + sprouts + shredded carrots

~ roasted red peppers + kalamata olives + cucumber (tossed with lemon & olive oil)

~ tuna/salmon/chicken salad + diced celery

Really ANYTHING you would put in a sandwich can be exchanged this way so experiment!

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Connect With Friends

In February we celebrate Valentine’s Day, but with my sons I celebrate February as “Love and Friendship” month. More than just fun times, studies have shown that friendships help us live better and even longer! A Harvard study found that physical impairments were less likely to develop in those who have many friends. In fact the results were so significant, the researchers concluded, that not having close friends or confidantes was as detrimental to your health as smoking or carrying extra weight! Another group of researches found that people who had no friends increased their risk of death, while those who had the most friends cut their risk by more than 60%! When our lives get hectic social time seems the first to be cut out, but that’s exactly when we need it the most. Although the exact mechanisms for this health benefit are still undetermined, friendships bring joy, laughter, and often empathy to our lives. Make time for your friends for the sake of your health!

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