This week’s blog posts will continue to focus on nutrition and in particular, oils. In the last few posts we have covered breakfast, vegetables, and how to add in more quality snacks. If you missed those posts, I recommend checking them out! Feel free to leave your thoughts and add to the discussion.
Let’s move on to oils. These can be used in many different ways for cooking, or just used for a dressing on salads. Not all cooking oils are created equal and some are definitely better than others.
One thing that I learned about oils is that some are better for high heat and some are better for low heat, or room temperature. A smoke point is the temperature when an oil will start to smoke and break down, cause it to lose its nutritional value, and change the flavor. If a low temperature oil, such as olive oil, is cooked at a high heat, it can cause it to become rancid. NOT GOOD! Coconut, avocado, and sesame oil are healthier oils to use at medium-high heat that won’t turn rancid. Olive oil is a great option to use at low-medium heat, or just used at room temperature. Oils with a low smoking point, such as pumpkinseed, walnut and flaxseed, are great for salad dressings and dips.
Here’s a link from the Mayo clinic that helps break different oils down. I personally don’t recommend corn, canola, or vegetable oil for any cooking. We use a lot of avocado and olive oil in our house.
Have you experienced oils becoming rancid? What are your favorites to use? Comment below!
Hopefully you found the information helpful. And if you find yourself with a stiff neck, or ever needing chiropractic services. I encourage you to call me or schedule an appointment at the clinic!
If you have ever been to Ultimate Health Chiropractic you are probably aware that we do not carry a lot of supplements. The supplement we do carry are high quality and often something that most people could benefit from. Today we will discuss Orthomega 820.
Most of us have heard that Omega-3 fatty acids are good for us. But why? Omega-3 fatty acids are essential cornerstones of human nutrition. They are deemed “essential” because we need them for proper health. However, it’s not something that we can produce on our own. An accumulating body of research shows that typical Westernized diets does not provide a sufficient amount of Omega-3’s for optimal health. This is known as Omega-3 depletion.
Symptoms of deficiency are common and include dry skin, itchy or flaky skin. Deficiency can also include poor sleep quality, poor circulation, eye discomfort, and mood imbalance. We must, therefore, consume these fats through our diet or supplementation to help maintain these essential nutrients.
Orthomega 820 is formulated to support cardiovascular health, blood sugar metabolism. In addition, it can also support incognitive function and development healthy skin/joints/connective tissue. Let’s not forget increased visual and ocular health, and maintain normal inflammatory balance. So as you can see, it supports a lot.
Orthomega 820 includes the natural triglycerides EPA and DHA and vitamin E and rosemary extract to ensure maximum purity and freshness.
What additional questions do you have about Omega-3’s? Comment below!
Sleep. Every knows it is important, but how does it impact us?
Sleep allows us to get what I call the “3 Rs”: Rest, Repair, and Recovery time. We all need REST from the busyness that has taken over our culture. During sleep our body is also REPAIRING from the physical stresses we placed on our bodies the previous day. Aside from the physical stress, sleep also allows us to rest our minds. Not enough sleep can make it difficult to focus and/or cause our bodies to not repair and be prepared for the next day. RECOVERING from the physical and mental stress allows us to feel more refreshed and ready to tackle the next day ahead.
We are all different so figuring out how much sleep you specifically need to thrive is the most important. Oversleeping can also backfire and cause someone to be more tired throughout their day. Here is a link to a chart from the Mayo Clinic on recommended sleep by age group. These are general rules for hours of sleep.
If sleep is important, why aren’t people getting enough? Here are a few things that can be part of the problem.
Stress is certainly a big factor
Working too many hours, or not turning off the work brain
Being in front of a screen before bed can stimulating brain activity
Alcohol or caffeine prior to bed can be disruptive
Sleeping is a full-time job – about 6-10 hours per day. For the same reason ergonomics at a “workstation” are important, your “sleep station” (bed set up) is also important. An old mattress, or pillow can make people not rest as well due to being uncomfortable, or not supported well. A sign you might need a new pillow or mattress may be restless sleep or waking up stiff/sore.
What can you do to help get better sleep? I’m glad you asked! Here are a few of my recommendations.
The body likes routine. A simple way to get better sleep is to have a similar sleep/wake cycle. That means goes to bed and wake up at the same time each day. This helps program the body to get into a pattern.
Try not drinking too close to bedtime, whether it be alcohol or regular liquids. This will decrease the need to use the bathroom, and no alcohol/caffeine also will improve the chances of more quality deep sleep. However, some herbal teas (decaffeinated) can be relaxing before bed.
Reading before bed has been helpful for me to get my brain distracted from the day; I typically fall asleep easier.
Try turning off any screens about one hour prior to bed. This reduces stimulation should make it easier to fall asleep.
Make your bed for sleep and intimacy only. Doing things like work, watching tv, and being on the phone or other screen time confuses the brain when it is time to sleep. Training your brain to know that bedtime means sleep time is important.
Staying cool. My body tends to run on the warm-hot end by nature and can interrupt sleep when I get too hot. I purchased a Chili Pad (not an endorsement, but I like it) which keeps me cool at night. Turning a fan on or setting the temperature to stay cool in the room may also be helpful.
Magnesium before bed can also help people sleep or may decrease restless legs.
Take time to relax: Epsom salt baths, calming yoga, deep breathing, meditation, prayer, or a gratitude journal before bed. Lavender scent can also be calming. (My wife loves this smell; I do not, but it works for many.)
One of my new favorite things to do before I fall asleep is what I have named “little joys.” I don’t know about you, but my kids can make bedtime exhausting and put me in a bad mood at times. Sometimes my day had some hard moments. I have realized this can sometimes make my brain think the entire day was negative. What I have started to do is before I fall asleep is to do a mental movie of my day. I go back and relive some of the good moments or look for the “little joys.”
The day is full of them, but many get forgotten due to the frustrations of the day. This helps me end my day on a positive mental note, makes me have gratitude about my day, and helps me go to sleep not thinking about the 5-10% of my day that may have not been the best.
I hope you find the information helpful. And if you find yourself with a stiff neck, or ever needing chiropractic services. I encourage you to call me or schedule an appointment at the clinic!
I like to think of food, especially breakfast as FUEL. If I am a high-performance vehicle (a guy can pretend), I need to put high-quality fuel into my engine so I can run more efficient. If I put poor fuel into my system I will probably not run as smoothly, won’t utilize the fuel as efficiently, and probably have build up in my system. Good fuel for our body is the food that gives us positive energy, sustained energy instead of the blood sugar highs and lows, and makes our bodies feel nourished. Signs of poor fuel in our system are gas, bloating, inflammation, fatigue, hyperactivity, occasionally skin conditions, or other physical symptoms.
The hard part for most people when it comes to nutrition is knowing what to eat. The food industry has made this difficult since it is highly marketed, and they understand what “buzz words” to place on their products. Here is one of my favorite lines when it comes to thinking about food. “If your grandma’s grandma wouldn’t recognize it as food, it is probably not food.” Shopping the perimeter of a store is where you will usually find foods that are in their whole form and less likely to be processed. If you start with a whole food and add it to other whole foods, it is easy to know what ingredients are in your food.
Keep it simple
Another good tip when it comes to nutrition is to plan your meals in advance. We typically make worse choices when we don’t plan ahead and then just grab something quick. Quick meals typically equal less healthy meals.
Let’s keep this simple and start with the most important meal of the day…BREAKFAST! I will fully admit that I use to barely eat breakfast, and if I did it was cereal or something quick. Breakfast, or Break-the-fast, is a great time to put some good fuel back into our system after it has spent the night resting, repairing, and recovering from the day before. To recover it uses a lot of protein to rebuild broken down tissue.
Replenish The Body
Breakfast is a great time to replenish the body with protein, healthy fats, and typically less carbs. Most people eat carbs for breakfast (toast, cereal, bagels, fruit, etc) and have no protein or fat. Carbs break down quickly, produce a quick rush of energy (blood sugar spike), and are short lived. This leaves us with uneven energy in the morning, and typically makes us hungry earlier in the day. Protein and fat break down more slowly, are better at balancing our blood sugar, keep our energy more consistent, and keep us full longer into the morning.
Here’s my typical breakfast in the morning. I know there are protein shakes, but I like to eat my food rather than drink it. I also like a hot breakfast. This takes me about 20 minutes, and I also pack my lunch while I am cooking. Keep in mind that I have 3 little kids that I am cooking this for too every morning and can still be out the door by about 7:00 AM. If you are trying to come up with excuses why this isn’t possible…if I can do it, you can too! If you don’t like that challenge, how about the idea of just feeling better in the mornings because you are more nourished.
My Breakfast Foods
I am not that creative, so I tend to have similar breakfast food but I just add different things to it to change it up slightly. We usually try to get the foods that have minimal ingredients and are nitrate/nitrite free for meats. I usually make 4-6 eggs (PROTEIN/FAT-feeds 4), and sausage, or bacon (PROTEIN/FAT). The bacon I cook in the microwave on this fun pan we have (no smoke in the house, no grease splatter, it collects the grease under the meat, and it’s done in 5 minutes).
I add different things to the eggs such as goat cheese, ground hamburger, ground sausage, chipotle Tabasco sauce, vegetables etc. I will also cut up some apple slices, bananas, or a small cup of berries. The fruit and carbs are typically only offered after the main meal is gone. Slices of avocado are also good to start the day with due to the healthy fat. Another option would be goat yogurt with berries. Goat milk/yogurt is usually much easier for most people to digest compared to cow milk/yogurt. What are your favorite breakfast foods? Comment below and let’s share with each other our breakfast favorites!.
It’s been a warm summer here in Minnesota! August is off to a warm start, as well. This week let’s talk about exercising in warm weather. It can be pretty dangerous if you aren’t adjusting for the heat.
Some consequences are heat stroke and heat exhaustion. Both are possible when your body gets overheated. When I was an athletic trainer, we were always working with athletes during the summer season to make sure they were taking measures to keep their bodies from overheating.
Find shade! If you are outside in activity, find the trees when you can. Either stay in the shade when you’re active or take breaks frequently. If you’re running, chose a path that’s more covered. Sometimes there are covered areas at sports centers, so look for places to get out of the sun.
Cooling as you go! For athletes more so than runners, you can have a bucket with ice water and towels handy. Take the towels out and cool yourself down by wearing it on your neck while playing, or using it during a break to cool down. Sometimes I even put it over my head when I am on a break.
Proper clothing! Moisture wicking clothes can help by taking the sweat off your body. Breathable clothing is key to ensure your body temperature doesn’t continue to rise. Wearing a hat blocks the sun, as well.
If you know you are going to be outside in the heat and exercising or prolonged activity, start hydrating the day before. Of course, you’ll want to continue to hydrate and take water breaks during the activity. I like to do the “free pee” test. Your urine color is usually a good indication for how hydrated you are. If it is dark yellow or orange, you are dehydrated. If it is clear to a light yellow, your hydration is okay. Make sure to check in when you do to the bathroom and monitor, especially when you have been exposed.
Re-hydrate when you’re done! This ensures that if you did get dehydrated, you are replenishing your body with the needed fluids. I like to use Nuun electrolyte tablets (https://nuunlife.com/). All you do is put the tablet in water and drink the mixture. Some people eat bananas or salty foods. What ever you choose, make sure you are taking steps to replenish your fluids.
Here’s to everyone staying healthy for the remainder of the summer. Let me know what tips you follow when exercising in the hot weather.