Posts Tagged ‘chiropractic

08
Jul
15

How Coffee Affects Your Health


coffee-cup-200-300We seem to hear different things from the medical community every few years about either the positive or negative effect that coffee has on our health. So what is the most current information? Is coffee good or bad for your health? The answer, in short, is that it’s a little of both.

Too much coffee can lead to a temporary increase in blood pressure, anxiety and upset stomach, in addition to its ability to become addictive. And don’t forget that added cream and sugar contribute to weight gain. For example, a 24-ounce Starbucks venti double chocolate chip frappucino contains a mind-boggling 520 calories!

Despite these drawbacks, moderate coffee consumption can actually have a protective effect, helping to reduce your risk of many problems, including Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, liver cancer, gallstones and Type 2 diabetes, to name a few. It can also lower the risk of stroke in women.

Current research has indicated that there is no increased risk of heart disease or cancer from moderate coffee drinking. The studies done earlier that reached that conclusion were flawed in that they did not take into consideration other lifestyle habits that went along with increased coffee drinking, such as smoking and lack of exercise, two major causes of these diseases. In fact, coffee has been shown to protect against many kinds of cancer.

A recent study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention found that there was a 25 percent reduction in cases of endometrial cancer in women who drank four or more cups of coffee per day. Scientists believe this may be due to the fact that coffee has the ability to lower concentrations of free estradiol and insulin, in addition to the cancer-fighting effect of coffee’s antioxidant phenols.

Even a few cups of coffee every day can cut men’s risk of developing prostate cancer by 30 percent, with those consuming six cups of coffee a day reducing their risk of a dangerous form of the cancer by a whopping 60 percent.

Coffee also reduces your risk of developing basal cell carcinoma by up to 20 percent, according to scientists from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

Another study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that women who drink coffee (four cups per day) have a 20 percent lower risk of depression than those who drink no coffee at all.

It is recommended that you get no more than 500-600 mg of caffeine intake per day, the equivalent of about 6 to 8 cups of brewed coffee. Obviously, the amount of caffeine in a cup of espresso will be more than that in the equivalent amount drip coffee.

The key point to keep in mind is to consume coffee in moderate amounts, especially if you are pregnant. But all in all, the benefits of coffee consumption far outweigh the risks for most people, so grab a café grande and drink up!

Nutrition is a very complex and our understanding of it is constantly evolving. If you have questions about your current nutrition or supplement plan, please ask. We are here to help!

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12
Nov
13

Applied Kinesiology Found To Benefit Chiropractic Patients with Urinary Incontinence


chiropractor Chapel Hill NCTwo American chiropractors have used applied kinesiology (AK) to aid the treatment of 21 patients experiencing urinary incontinence (UI), with considerable success.  Applied Kinesiology is a technique that uses the strength of a particular muscle (often a muscle in the arm) to diagnose problems in certain organs or in other parts of the body.  The practitioner places pressure on whichever of the patient’s muscles that corresponds the particular part of the body being assessed, and the amount of resistance it gives determines if there is a problem in that area.

Urinary incontinence affects 10% of men and 40% of women at some point in their lives, with women being particularly susceptible to UI following childbirth.  Current evidence suggests that weakness in the pelvic floor muscles, which leads to UI, can result from problems in other areas of the pelvis or lumbar spine as well as weakness in the pelvic floor itself.  Chiropractic manipulation may thus be of considerable benefit in correcting these problems with a concomitant improvement in the symptoms of UI.

Chiropractors Scott Cuthbert and Anthony Rossner assessed patients who had UI by using AK muscle testing to determine the presence and location of musculoskeletal disorders in the lumbar or pelvic regions.  The precise nature of the problem was then assessed by physical examination.  Muscle testing was again used to guide chiropractic manipulation treatment. Interventions that improved muscle strength were continued, and those that failed to do so were not pursued.  Patients were seen for up to thirteen treatments, and for no more than six weeks.

All of the patients treated experienced an improvement in UI symptoms, with nearly half (ten out of 21) reporting complete resolution of their condition following treatment.  It is particularly significant that ten of the patients had presented with long-standing symptoms of UI (at least five years, but greater than 40 years in two cases!).   Annual check-ups for at least two years confirmed that these improvements were maintained post-treatment.

In addition to positively demonstrating the benefit of using muscle testing techniques to aid with chiropractic diagnosis, this research is important in showing the relationship between UI symptoms and musculoskeletal weakness in parts of the lower back and pelvis.  A particular observation here was that the restricted breathing noted in many patients due to trauma to the diaphragm (and other muscle groups associated with inhalation such as the rectus abdominus and oblique abdominal muscles) was also found to impact on urinary continence.

This study suggests that combination of AK and chiropractic manipulation of the lower back and pelvis may be very helpful for patients with UI symptoms.  Please call us or visit our office with any questions.

 

09
Nov
13

Chiropractic Rehabilitation Significantly Helps Scoliosis Patients


Scoliosis and chiropracticScoliosis is a condition in which the spinal column appears curved rather than straight when viewed from the back. Symptoms include pain, restricted upper body movement and, in more severe cases, increased pressure on the heart and lungs. The misalignment of the vertebrae that is associated with scoliosis tends to worsen with age due to an asymmetric degeneration of the spine that is produced by the abnormal curvature.  This means that effective early management of the condition is important. As yet, however, there have been few published studies of exercise and rehabilitation programs specifically designed to help patients with scoliosis.

Michigan chiropractor Mark Morningstar assessed the progress of 28 patients after chiropractic treatment for scoliosis and a six-month follow-up program of remedial exercise and rehabilitation techniques. The specific therapeutic interventions used by each patient at home were based on Active Reflex Correction in 3 Dimensions (ARC3D) and included the use of corrective weights, exercises that rotate the upper body, and foam blocks to bring the spine back into alignment.

Six months after the initial treatment, patients exhibited an average improvement of 10 degrees in spinal curvature from a mean curvature of 44 degrees prior to treatment. Twenty-two of the 28 participants in the study were observed to have improved spinal alignment, with the remaining six receiving no apparent benefit. Without treatment, the angle of curvature would be expected to remain broadly similar, as it did in the six unimproved patients, or even to increase. Patient ratings of pain were recorded to have fallen by an average of 39 percent based on the Quadruple Numeric Pain Scale (QNPS) questionnaire when measured at six months after initial treatment, and by a further 21 percent at the 24-month follow-up. The Functional Rating Index (FRI) of disability similarly fell from a baseline average of 60 percent to 30 percent at the six-month check, and 18 percent at 24 months. A spirometer was used to measure the lung capacity of all patients before and after treatment, and a 7percent mean increase was observed at six months, with no further improvement 18 months later.

Improvements in curvature, pain and disability tended to be greatest in patients who began the study with the least severe condition. Patients presenting with double major curvature (an S rather than C-shaped spine) received no benefit in spinal curvature from the treatment, but even they experienced a reduction in pain and disability.

 

 

07
Nov
13

Dowager’s Hump Causes and Treatment Options


Camel. Ship Of DesertAlthough the name “Dowager’s Hump” implies that this condition is one that affects elderly women (which it primarily does), it can also affect anyone who spends a lot of time hunched over or who has a severe case of osteoporosis, including men. The medical term for Dowager’s Hump is hyperkyphosis, which is an increase in the forward curvature of the lower cervical and upper thoracic spine. It is a condition that can either be relatively painless or can cause considerable pain and discomfort.

Dowager’s hump is common in people with osteoporosis and is usually due to what is called a wedge fracture. This is when the front part of the vertebra (the side facing your chest) collapses. This causes the vertebra to tilt forward, which forces the back to curve and the head to jut forward. In some cases the curvature is so severe that it forces the head to look downward. It can become a sort of domino effect, with the collapsed vertebra tilting and putting pressure on the one below, until it too subsequently fractures and tilts, etc. In advanced osteoporosis, the bones of the vertebrae can become so porous that they may fracture as a result of lifting something or doing something as simple as coughing or sneezing.

A wedge fracture does not necessarily cause pain, and the first signs of it may be a loss in height or an obvious rounding of the upper back. Other people are more likely to see it before the person suffering from the disorder, as we do not generally see ourselves from the side. Someone with hyperkyphosis may also experience neck pain, breathing difficulties, rib pain and loss of appetite. Symptoms may be worse when coughing or sneezing and may be relieved when lying down.

Those with mild cases of hyperkyphosis may find some relief through yoga. A study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that elderly women with Dowager’s Hump who took yoga classes three times a week for six months had a slight reduction in the curvature of their spine. In situations where Dowager’s Hump is more severe and is causing pain, there are also more invasive treatments available. The surgical treatments vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty involve the injection of cement into the vertebrae to restore their height, reducing pain and spinal curvature.

The best treatment, however, is prevention, which involves strengthening the bones as much as possible and preventing bone loss by eating a healthy diet and getting regular weight-bearing exercise. Maintaining correct posture is also important, as habitual slumping (such as when you use a laptop or when sitting at a desk) eventually causes muscle imbalances, and the muscles and ligaments supporting the spinal column weaken, putting additional pressure on the vertebrae, allowing them to slip out of place. Regular chiropractic adjustments can help keep the vertebrae aligned, along with exercise to strengthen the supporting muscles.

Dr Dubois, DC, CCSP

Pierre DuboisDr. Dubois, a Swiss physician, and a Triangle Certified Sport Chiropractor has over 20 years of experience in the treatment and prevention of disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Amongst his patients, two world champions in martial arts (gold medalists in 2005 WMJA), one carrier of the Olympic flame in 2004, and numerous soccer players, swimmers and athletes of all levels who benefited from his chiropractic care.

 

06
Nov
13

How Does the VibraCussor Work?


man-with-questions-200-300Increasing numbers of chiropractors are incorporating a VibraCussor into their practice, as they have found that it often helps to prepare the patient for an adjustment. The VibraCussor relaxes the muscles and fascia surrounding the vertebral subluxation that they will be addressing, making their treatments more effective.

The VibraCussor is a vibration instrument that differs from usual massagers in that it uses a piston-like up-and-down movement rather than a back-and-forth movement. It creates comfortable waves of compression that travel through the tissues to the affected muscles and fascia, allowing the instrument to release fascial adhesions, relax tense muscles and increase circulation and lymph flow. It is possible for the chiropractor to vary the frequency of the percussion in order to target specific tissues and tissue depths.

Fascia is the thick, white connective tissue that surrounds the body’s muscles and which keep our organs in place. However, under stress from injury or surgery, the fascia can become too tight and may form fascial adhesions that can be felt under the skin as knots or ropes in the muscles. These adhesions can trap nerves and restrict blood flow and movement of the muscles, which puts the body out of balance. Tight fasciae are often responsible for poor posture and imbalances in the breathing and heart rhythms.

The VibraCussor can be effective in treating myofascial trigger points, frozen shoulder, TMJ (jaw) problems, joint fixation (particularly of the shoulder, elbow, hand, hip, knee and foot), muscle fatigue and fascial adhesions. With VibraCussor treatment, nervous system tension is released, muscle spasms are reduced and lymph and blood circulation are encouraged. This helps to reduce musculoskeletal pain and allows the patient to reduce or eliminate the need for pain medication, in addition to increasing their range of movement.

According to Jeff Banaszak of Back9Fitness.com, “Besides targeting tight tissues, the benefits of mechanical compressive therapy include stimulation of body proprioceptors. Prioprioceptors are specialized cells found within joints and muscles that when activated help protect and improve function. By stimulating the proprioceptors, the therapist can activate a particular muscle needed to control posture, balance and strength.”

Most chiropractic patients report that the VibraCussor is very relaxing, and in addition to releasing fascial adhesions some have reported that it releases emotions as well, helping to eliminate the stress that is so often the cause of the tightness and adhesions in the first place. The VibraCussor is a gentle, non-invasive form of treatment that can be a positive addition to your regular chiropractic care.

 

 

05
Nov
13

Chiropractic More Effective for Neck Pain Than Other Therapies


man-with-neck-pain-200-300Neck pain is believed to affect between 10% and 15% of the general population, and is particularly likely in those over 50 years of age. Neck pain is frequently accompanied by headaches, dizziness or other symptoms.  In addition, certain movements or sustained postures of the neck can aggravate the pain and stiffness and add to a limit in range of motion.

Common treatments for neck pain include prescription analgesics along with some type of physical therapy (usually massage, application of heat and/or specialized exercises) to deal with the pain and improve function.  However, the results of a randomized controlled trial published in the Annals of Internal Medicine showed that manual therapy, such as chiropractic care performed by a certified chiropractor, was more effective than either physical therapy or continued care by a general practitioner.

The study involved 183 patients between 18 and 70 years of age who had reported having non-specific neck pain for two weeks or more. Patients were randomly assigned to one of three groups: manual therapy, physical therapy or continued care by their physician.

Those referred to a manual therapist had a 45-minute treatment once a week for up to six weeks; those who were treated by a physical therapist had a 30-minute treatment twice a week for up to six weeks; and the remaining patients who were under continuing care from their doctor were given medication to treat pain and inflammation, were instructed in the use of hot compresses and were given exercises they could perform at home to treat their neck pain. All patients included in the study were allowed to use exercises at home, non-prescription pain medication and any medication that his or her physician may have prescribed before the beginning of the study in the treatment of their neck pain.

Seven weeks after the beginning of the study, patients were asked to rate their neck pain, from “much worse” to “completely recovered,” and the researchers compared the number of patients in each group who had reported feeling at least “much improved.” The results indicated that 68.3% of the manual therapy group reported feeling either “much improved” or “completely recovered,” compared with 50.8% of patients in the physical therapy group and 35.9% of patients in the physician-treated group.

Despite the fact that the lead author of the study is a physical therapist, the study noted that “the physical therapy patients achieved significantly worse success rates while using twice the number of patient visits as the manual therapy group.” The researchers concluded that “in daily practice, manual therapy is a favorable treatment option for patients with neck pain compared with physical therapy or continued care by a general practitioner,” and that “primary care physicians should consider [referral for] manual therapy when treating patients with neck pain.”

 

09
Sep
13

How Chiropractic Care Has Helped Me: Introducing Brigadier General Becky Halstead


 

Can chiropractic help?Retired Brigadier General Becky Halstead is no stranger to pain. She spent her entire adult life in the military, and was the first female graduate from West Point to become a general officer. She has seen battle all over the world, including in Iraq. But she has also fought her own personal battle—with fibromyalgia.

 

Fibromyalgia is a condition that is still not fully understood, but it involves symptoms that include headaches, fatigue, muscle pain, anxiety and depression. “It’s as if your whole body is a bruise … You hurt everywhere,” Halstead says. Even something as simple as showering was painful. “The water hitting your skin, it would feel like it was tearing.”

 

The conventional treatment for fibromyalgia involves pharmaceuticals, which Halstead took for a number of years. However, the drugs have only limited effectiveness, and she did not want them to affect her job. She said “I knew it wasn’t going to kill me—I was just in pain, so I took myself off all prescription drugs when I went into combat. I was in charge of 20,000 soldiers. That’s a huge command, a huge responsibility. I wasn’t going to have someone doubt or wonder whether the prescriptions influenced me or my decisions.”

 

However, it became impossible to continue in the military while dealing with debilitating pain, so she retired from the army in 2008. It was then that she began semi-monthly visits to a chiropractor, and that’s when her health began to turn around. Within a year of beginning chiropractic treatment, she was able to discontinue taking pharmaceuticals entirely by combining regular chiropractic spinal adjustments with nutritional supplements.

 

Halstead says of chiropractic care and how it has helped her, “It’s not like you’re cured, but you feel so much better. They set me on a path of getting well. I’m the healthiest I’ve been in 10 years. I was taking eight or 10 prescription drugs in 2008. The more I went to the chiropractor, the less prescriptions I needed.” She continued, “When I retired, my pain was easily a 9 or 10 (on a 10-point scale) every single day. My pain now is a 2 or 3, and maybe even sometimes a 1. I don’t think I’ve hit a 10 since I started regularly seeing a chiropractor.”

 

“If I had known how much chiropractic care would help me when I was a commander in Iraq and in the United States, I could have taken better care of my soldiers.” Although chiropractic care for military personnel was approved by congress, there are still many treatment facilities that do not have a chiropractor on staff, which Halstead would like to see changed.

 

“Until we’ve done that we have not fulfilled our leadership responsibility,” Halstead said. “If you want to help them, see a congressman and ask ‘aren’t our men and women getting these benefits?’ I’m not a chiropractor I’m a satisfied patient, a beneficiary of their talented hands, minds, and hearts. Go find yourself a chiropractor and change your life!”

 

 

 

Dr Dubois, DC, CCSP

 

Dr.Pierre DuboisDr. Dubois,a Swiss physician, and a Triangle Certified Sport Chiropractor has over 20 years of experience in the treatment and prevention of disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Amongst his patients, two world champions in martial arts (gold medalists in 2005 WMJA), one carrier of the Olympic flame in 2004, and numerous soccer players, swimmers and athletes of all levels who benefited from his chiropractic care.

 

http://www.omaha.com/article/20130316/LIVEWELL01/703179900

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t22AVZ44z3A (first of a 4-part series)

 

 

 

 




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