TRAIL MIX MEAL REPLACEMENT/SNACKS!

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Last month, we broke down popular and affordable meal replacement bars.  This month, we are focusing on trail mix!  Trail mix is a great option for on-the-go because it can be comprised with your exact nutrition goals in mind.  As a reminder, many components of trail mix are high in fat, thus high in calories.  Portions of trail mix are small, but they pack a nutritional and caloric punch to keep you full for hours.  In our previous post, we gave a brief nutrition lesson, if you need a refresher.

A great trail mix should be comprised of the following: a nut, a seed, some crunch and some sweet.  This combination helps create a balanced (carbs/protein/fat) mix that will help with hunger and cravings.  Below, we selected 4 types of nuts, seeds, crunch and sweet, and broke down the macros and nutrition of each.

NUTS // CALORIES PER OUNCE • PROTEIN (P) • CARB (C) • FAT (F) • SUGAR • FIBER
Almond // 164 cal • 6g P • 6g C • 14g F • 1g sugar • 4g fiber
Peanut // 160 cal • 7g P •5g C • 14g F • 1g sugar • 2g fiber
Walnut // 185 cal • 4g P • 4g C • 18g F • 1g sugar • 2g fiber
Pecan // 196 cal • 3g P • 4g C • 20g F • 1g sugar • 3g fiber

SEED // CALORIES PER OUNCE • PROTEIN (P) • CARB (C) • FAT (F) • SUGAR • FIBER
Sunflower // 166 cal • 6g P • 6g C • 15g F • 1g sugar • 2g fiber
Pumpkin // 180 cal • 9g P • 4g C • 14g F • 1g sugar • 3g fiber
Chia // 137 cal • 5g P • 12g C • 9g F • 0g sugar • 10g fiber
Sesame // 103 cal • 3g P • 4g P • 9g F • 0g sugar • 2g fiber

CRUNCH // CALORIES PER SERVING • PROTEIN (P) • CARB (C) • FAT (F) • SUGAR • FIBER
Fiber One Cereal // 60 cal (1/2 cup) • 2g P • 25g C • 1g F • 0g sugar • 14g fiber
Soy Nuts // 113 cal (1/4 cup) • 9g P • 7g C • 0g F • 0g sugar • 2g fiber
Pretzels // 110 cal (22 pcs) • 3g P • 23g C • 1g F • 4g sugar • 1g fiber
Sesame Sticks // 170 (1/4 cup) • 3g P • 14g C • 12g F • 0g sugar • 1g fiber

SWEET // CALORIES PER SERVING • PROTEIN (P) • CARB (C) • FAT (F) • SUGAR • FIBER
Raisins //92 cal (one oz.) • 1g P • 22g C • 0g F • 21g sugar • 1g fiber
Dark Chocolate Chips // 70 cal (14 pcs) • 0g P • 9g C • 5g F • 6g sugar • 1g fiber
Dried Cranberries // 123 cal (1/3 cup) • 0g P • 33g C • 1g F • 26 sugar • 2 fiber
Banana Chips // 170 ( 1/2 cup) • 1g P • 20g C • 10g F • 5g sugar • 2g fiber

SAMPLE TRAIL MIX COMBOS
(CUT TRAIL MIX COMBOS IN HALF FOR A SNACK OPTION)

#1: ALMOND // CHIA // PRETZELS // RAISINS (one serving of each)
503 CAL • 15g PROTEIN • 63g CARBS (47g NET) • 24g FAT • 26g SUGAR • 16g FIBER

#2: PEANUTS // PUMPKIN // FIBER ONE // DRIED CRANBERRIES (one serving of each)
523 CAL • 18g PROTEIN • 67g CARBS (46g NET) • 30g FAT • 28g SUGAR • 21g FIBER

#3: WALNUTS // SUNFLOWER // SOY NUTS // DARK CHOC CHIPS (one serving of each)
534 CAL • 23g PROTEIN • 26g CARBS (19g NET) • 38g FAT • 8g SUGAR • 7g FIBER

#4: PECANS // SESAME // SESAME STICKS // BANANA CHIPS (one serving of each)
639 CAL • 10g PROTEIN • 42g CARBS (34g NET) • 51g FAT • 6g SUGAR • 8g FIBER

Purchase your trail mix components in bulk to save money, and measure out servings in ziplock bags or reusable containers.  Store the servings in your car, in your gym bag, at your work and in your home.  These are great, accessible, affordable and TASTY snacks to help you with your wellness goals!

GOAL SETTING

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 GOLDEN RULES OF GOAL SETTING


As we begin a New Year, we reflect on the year's past and how we want to define the future.  Setting goals is a great way to take control of your life's direction!  It also provides a benchmark for determining whether you are actually succeeding.  If you want to succeed, you need to set goals.  Without goals you lack focus and direction.  You cannot expect to want things to happen, but then do not have action steps to achieve them.  We compiled a list of the FIVE golden rules for goal setting.  HAPPY NEW YEAR! 
 

1.  SET GOALS THAT MOTIVATE YOU - Make sure your goals motivate you, meaning, making sure they are important to you and there is value in achieving them.  Set goals that relate to the high priorities in your life.  Without this focus, you can end up with far too many goals and end up achieving none (which can be disappointing, frustrating and de-motivating).  Create a sense of urgency and a 'must do' attitude - this will maximize the likelihood of success.
TIP: When creating goals, write down WHY it is valuable and important.  If you were to share your goal with others, what would you tell them to convince them it was a worthwhile goal?
 
2.  SET S.M.A.R.T. GOALS - For goals to be powerful, they should be designed to be S.M.A.R.T.  Each goal should be:
Specific - Your goal should be clear and well-defined.  You need goals to show you the way, so if they are vague or generalized, they do not provide direction.  
Measurable - Include precise amounts, dates, etc. for your goals so you can measure your degree of success.  If your goal is to reduce expenses, for example, how will you know when you have been successful?  Reduce expenses by 1%?  10%?  Measure to celebrate success.
Attainable - Make sure your goals can be achieved, but also not too easy.  If you set a goal that you have no hope of achieving, you will only disappoint yourself and your confidence will decrease.  If you set a goal that is too easy, it will feel anticlimactic and hinder future goal setting.
Relevant - Goals should be relevant to the direction you want your life and career to take.  When you keep goals aligned with this in mind, you will create focus to get ahead and do what you want.  If you set widely scattered and inconsistent goals, you will waste time and efficiency.
Time Bound - Your goals MUST have a deadline. This means that you will know when you can celebrate success!  When you are working on a deadline, your sense of urgency increases and achievement will come that much quicker.

3. SET GOALS IN WRITING - The physical act of writing down a goal makes it real and tangible; you have no excuse to forget about it.  Use language such as 'will' vs ' would like to' or 'might' to avoid getting sidetracked.  Post your goals in visible places to remind yourself of your intentions.
TIP: Shift your goal to a positive statement.  Example, 'I will stop drinking soda' vs 'I will drink more water'.  The first feels like a restriction, like soda is an enemy and can NEVER be enjoyed.  Shift the goal to something you want to add or that can contribute positively to your life.

4. MAKE AN ACTION PLAN -  This is often a missed step in the goal planning process; you get so focused on the outcome that you forget to plan the steps needed along the way.  By writing out individual steps and crossing them off once completed, you will notice you are making progress towards the end goal.  This is especially vital if your goal is big, demanding or long-term.

5. STICK WITH IT! - Goal setting is an ongoing activity, not just a means to an end.  Create reminders to keep yourself on track and make standing appointments with yourself to review your goals and action plan.  The end goal may remain the same, but the action plan may undergo significant changes along the way.  Make sure the relevance, value and necessity remain high.

Goal setting is much more than saying you want something to happen.  You must clearly define exactly what you want and understand why you want it.  Your odds of success will reduce considerably if you do not follow these steps!  Happy Goal Setting! 

GRAB & GO MEAL REPLACEMENTS

We know that you know that an ideal meal is sitting at a table, with a plate full of whole foods, but we ALSO know that sometimes we just can't avoid a meal on the go!  We did some digging, and found some of the best meal replacement bars available.

Before we dive into our list, let's give a short nutrition lesson.  Each bar is broken down into macro nutrients (Carbohydrate, Protein, Fat).  Macro nutrients are the 3 components every single food and liquid is comprised of, and what we need to thrive.  We also list the sugar and fiber content of each bar.  Why?  Because sugar is often added for flavor and to decrease fat content.  Fiber is a very important component of nutrition, and it also decreases the net carbohydrates of a food or liquid.  Example, if a bar has 30 grams of carbs, but has 4 grams of fiber, the net carbs of the bar is only 26 grams!  All calories are not created equal.  Carbs and protein have 4 kcals per gram, while fat has 9 kcals per gram.  This is why foods high in fat are also high in calories!

Make sure you chose a bar based on your specific needs and goals.  If it is a TRUE meal replacement, do not shy away from high calories.  If it is for an energy boost or after a workout, reach for a bar with more carbohydrates.  If it is in the morning, reach for a bar high in protein to keep you full.  If it is before a workout, reach for a bar high in fat.

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1. CLIF WHEY PROTEIN BAR
250 CAL • 3g FIBER • 23g (net) CARBS • 14g PROTEIN • 11g FAT • 5g SUGAR
$2

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2. KIND STRONG BAR
230 CAL • 3g FIBER • 12g (net) CARBS • 10g PROTEIN • 16g FAT • 6g SUGAR
$1.50

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3. RX BAR
210 CAL • 6g FIBER • 16g (net) CARBS • 12g PROTEIN • 10g FAT •16g SUGAR
$3

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4. LUNA PROTEIN BAR
170 CAL • 3g FIBER • 17g (net) CARBS • 12g PROTEIN • 5g FAT • 13g SUGAR
$1.50

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5. LARABAR
200 CAL • 3g FIBER • 23g (net) CARB • 5g PROTEIN • 11g FAT • 16g SUGAR
$1

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6. CLIF BUILDER'S PROTEIN BAR
270 CAL • 4g FIBER • 26g (net) CARB • 20g PROTEIN • 8g FAT •20g SUGAR
$2

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7. CLIF BAR
250 CAL • 3g FIBER • 41g (net) CARBS • 9g PROTEIN • 5g FAT • 22g SUGAR
$1

ALL of these bars are accessible, affordable, and can be found at your nearest grocer.  Avoid fast food when you can, and stock up on alternatives to a meal replacement.  Stay tuned for our blog post about trail mix and what to order if you are in the drive-thru!

PROBIOTICS

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By now you have heard about probiotics and gut health.  There are supplements and foods that are heavily advertised everywhere we look, recommending probiotics.  Our digestive system is our second immune system (well, actually our third, because we have an innate and acquired immune system, click the box below for more information), and we suggest beginning a probiotic regimen!  

WHY?

Glad you asked!  Our gut health is vital for our overall well-being.  Common symptoms such as fatigue, feeling sluggish, bloating, even joint pain can be due to our gut flora.  Gut flora is the complex community of microorganisms that live in our digestive tracts.  It may give you an uneasy feeling to know that our gut is filled with microorganisms and bacteria, but intestinal bacteria is essential for important tasks, such as synthesizing some vitamins.  Our digestive system lives in harmony when the majority of bacteria in our gut is GOOD, but when our gut is overrun by BAD bacteria, our system cannot function effectively.  Probiotic supplements are packed with GOOD bacteria that can help you feel your best from the inside, out!

WHEN?

There is conflicting advertisement suggesting probiotics should be a daily supplement for the rest of your life, despite that being FALSE.  Probiotics should be taken sporadically or acutely, based on symptoms and diet.  Aside from marketing and sales, another reason that probiotics are recommended for daily use is the assumption that many of us have poor diets and gut flora that is so far from the ideal.  Some people would benefit from an extended regimen of probiotics until their gut flora is restored, but the goal is to not have to take yet another supplement every day.  Diet is THE factor when it comes to gut health (aside from any genetic disposition).  Whole foods as a primary and refined sugar & carbs in moderation, is the tried and true way to wellness for life.  Probiotics are a great tool for acute care - for example, after a vacation or during the holidays when sugar intake is in excess.  Excess sugar is a breeding ground for yeast.  When our gut has an influx of yeast growth, good bacteria cannot keep up.  Yeast overgrowth is responsible for many symptoms listed above.  A high-quality probiotic, taken for 10-21 days is a great way to restore your gut and its health.

HOW?

Not all probiotics are created equal.  Avoid purchasing a probiotic that is stored at room temperature on a store shelf.  Probiotics are filled with live, active cultures, so a cooler temperature is ideal.  Room temperature + sitting on a store shelf for an extended period of time = significant decrease in effectiveness (and waste of money!).  There are probiotics available that are stable at room temperature, such as the probiotics from Standard Process (click box below).  We are a great resource to point you in the right direction for supplements based on your needs and budget.  Contact the front desk for more information, or send us an email using the "Appointment Request" tab.

IMMUNE SYSTEM

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Immune System Overview

Our immune system is a beautifully intricate system that is constantly working and caring for us.  Our immune system adapts, fights and functions autonomously - we do not have to consciously remind it to work for us.  Despite having an amazing immune system, we sometimes get ill.  When we get ill, our immune system begins working in high gear - it wants to recognize the illness, fight the illness AND prevent the illness from returning.  During illness, our immune system uses a lot of energy, which is why a common symptom is fatigue and even increased appetite - our body is asking for fuel to help fight.

Innate vs. Acquired Immune System

Our innate immune system is the autonomous system present at birth.  When triggered, this system reacts quickly and broadly as possible to fight off offending intruders.  In its swift action, the innate immune system can be very non-specific and resorts to unpleasant responses, such as inflammation that leads to hives, fever, cough & runny nose, to name a few.  This is the system that is responsible for allergic responses.  While innate immune system reactions are important in the body's defense mechanisms and are critically important in the first few hours of exposure to a pathogen, the acquired immune system is the main system working when it comes to ridding your body of unwanted disease.  The acquired immune system is more sophisticated in its fighting action.  This system uses knowledge (immunological memory) to fight illness - it identifies previously encountered bacteria and viruses to attack the new infection with precision and efficiency.  These strategic attacks of the acquired immune system are why most common bacteria and viruses are ultimately cleared from the body.

Boost vs. Support

Boosting our immune system is a misnomer.  A boost is a surge, and it is what our immune system does when we are ill.  We only want our immune system in a boost when we are ill - otherwise, we have an overactive immune system (autoimmune diseases & allergies).  Instead of envisioning a boosted immune system, practice a lifestyle that supports your immune system.  Our immune system wants to work efficiently, and there are things we can do to support the system that works so hard for us.

Immune System Support

Our acquired immune system is one that has been cultivated over time and with exposure.  Aside from vaccines and antibodies from breast milk, this system relies on exposure and memory to keep us healthy (and often times why children get sick more frequently than adults).  There are steps we can take to keep our immune system working in harmony and efficiently.  Eating well, getting enough sleep, consistent exercise and proper hydration are great ways to help support your immune system.

Chiropractic Care & Our Immune System

Chiropractic care is an amazing way to support your immune system.  Chiropractic adjustments are not just for symptoms of the spine and joints, but adjustments can help heal us from the inside out.  Immune response is contingent on proper neural function.  Neural dysfunctions due to spinal misalignments (subluxations) are stressful to the body and cause abnormal changes that lead to a poorly coordinated immune response. Chiropractic adjustments have been shown to improve the coordinated responses of the nervous system and immune system.  Every system in our body including the immune system is coordinated and controlled by the nervous system. Immune organs include the spleen, lymph nodes and the thymus are all in communication with the brain and nerves connect them all. This communication process occurs so that they all talk with one another to coordinate the body’s response to what may be happening in the body; without this process we fall ill. If our nervous system is not functioning properly then the immune system cannot function properly; this makes our body susceptible to viruses, bacteria, and other illnesses that it can normally fight off.

Schedule your check-up with Dr. Mary or Dr. Kevin today to support your immune system!

 

BACK TO SCHOOL LUNCH IDEAS

Dr. Kevin and Dr. Mary know first hand the juggling that comes when school resumes - they have three children of their own, after all!  We scoured the internet, and found this great info-graph that outlines a great school lunch.  We love the variety of suggestions that would even please the pickiest of eaters! :)  

MAGNESIUM!

Magnesium is an important mineral that the average American diet does not provide enough of.  The average US adult gets 250mg per day, while the daily recommendation is 320-420mg.  Magnesium helps the body with so many things, it is an old home remedy for anxiety, depression, headaches, irritability, restlessness and muscle cramps.  It is said to be the 'original chill pill'.  Signs that you may have low magnesium include muscle cramps and heart arrhythmia.  Magnesium is a counter-ion for calcium and potassium in muscle cells, including the heart.  Ion regulation helps muscles contract and send nerve signals.  Magnesium also assists with cell transportation, energy within our cells, and our bones are a great reservoir of the mineral.  Stress causes us to waste our magnesium in our urine, causing deficiency.  Stress and depression are also associated with systemic inflammation and immune response.  The theory is the increase of depression in Americans is in part due to the decrease of magnesium in our diets.

Here are some great ways to get magnesium naturally in your diet - 

If you are unable to get the daily recommended 400mg per day, MagCitrate is available for sale at the clinic!**

**There are some safety considerations with respect to magnesium supplementation.  If you have normal kidney function, you do not have myasthenia gravis, bowel obstruction, or bradycardia, you should be able to supplement without worry.  In addition, magnesium interferes with the absorption of certain pharmaceuticals including digoxin, nitrofurantoin, bisphosphanates, and some antimalaria drugs.  Magnesium can reduce the efficacy of chloropromazine, oral anticoagulants and the quinolone and tetracycline classes of antibiotics.

LET'S TALK ABOUT POSTURE!

"In addition to back and neck pain, health studies show spending 12 hours a day in a chair increases the risk of developing diabetes by 91%."

A sedentary lifestyle is often unavoidable, especially if your workplace is in front of a desk.  Sitting for long hours folds your body, compressing and weakening your core, stand up and move around frequently to dramatically reduce the health risks of sitting.  Here are some additional tips to avoid the risks of prolonged sitting:

  • Use a headset to return calls so you can walk as you talk and to avoid poor cervical posture
  • Set an alarm on your phone of intervals every hour to get up and move
  • Take micro posture breaks and stretch throughout the day
  • Take your lunch break away from your desk and walk
  • Sit on an exercise ball an hour per day

 

Many businesses are beginning to recognize the role good body posture and comfort plays into employee productivity.  Ask your HR department for standing/sitting workstation approval.  Sometimes an improved workstation is a medical necessity!  Talk to Dr. Kevin or Dr. Mary if you qualify.

Many businesses are beginning to recognize the role good body posture and comfort plays into employee productivity.  Ask your HR department for standing/sitting workstation approval.  Sometimes an improved workstation is a medical necessity!  Talk to Dr. Kevin or Dr. Mary if you qualify.

SPINE FACTS

13 AMAZING FACTS ABOUT THE HUMAN SPINE

23 - 27 INCHES: Approximate length of adult spinal column

26: Adults only have 26 bones in their spine as some vertebrae fuse together as we grow

7: Both giraffes and humans have 7 vertebrae in their necks

100+: There are over 100 joints contained in the spine

120+: There are over 120 muscles contained in the spine

2/3: The spine is so flexible that it can bend far enough to form two thirds of a circle

17 INCHES: Approximate length of the adult spinal cord

33: The spine is made up of 33 irregularly shaped bones called vertebrae

5: The spinal cord is divided into five different regions (from top to bottom)
7 cervical vertebrae
12 thoracic vertebrae
5 lumbar vertebrae
5 sacrum-fused vertebrae
4 coccyx-fused vertebrae

13: Number of neurons in the spinal cord

220: Number of ligaments in the spine

3%: Astronauts returning from space can be up to 3% taller, gaining as much as 2 inches as cartilage discs expand in micro-gravity

35 grams: Weight of spinal cord

Chiropractic & Pregnancy

IS CHIROPRACTIC CARE SAFE IN PREGNANCY?

Yes!  There are no known contraindications to chiropractic care throughout pregnancy.  All chiropractors are trained to work with women who are pregnant.  Investing in the fertility and pregnancy wellness of women who are pregnant or trying to conceive is a routine care for most chiropractors.

WHY SHOULD I HAVE CHIROPRACTIC CARE DURING PREGNANCY?

During pregnancy, there are several physiological and endocrinological changes that occur in preparation for creating the environment for a developing baby.  Your body changes, including: protruding abdomen and increased back curve, pelvic changes and postural adaptations.  When the pelvis is misaligned it may reduce the amount of room available for the developing baby.  This restriction is called intrauterine constraint.  A misaligned pelvis may also make it difficult for the baby to get into the best possible position for delivery.  This can affect the mother's ability to have a natural, non-invasive birth.  Breech and posterior positions can interfere with the natural ease of labor and lead to interventions such as C-sections.  The nervous system is the master communication system to all the body systems including the reproductive system.  Keeping the spine aligned helps the entire body work more effectively.  

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF CHIROPRACTIC CARE DURING PREGNANCY?

Chiropractic care during pregnancy can provide benefits for women who are pregnant.  Potential benefits of chiropractic care during pregnancy include: maintaining a healthier pregnancy, controlling symptoms of nausea, reducing the time of labor and delivery, relieving back, neck or joint pain, and preventing a potential cesarean delivery.

Dr. Kevin & Dr. Mary are both experienced with prenatal care.  If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms in pregnancy, call to schedule an appointment today!

CAN I GET MASSAGES DURING PREGNANCY?

Yes!  Studies indicate that massage therapy performed during pregnancy can reduce anxiety, decrease symptoms of depression, regulate hormones, improvement of nerve pain, relieve muscle aches and joint pains, and improve labor outcomes and newborn health.

Our massage therapists, Kari & Stuart have experience with prenatal massage.  Mention this blog post and receive $10 off you or your loved one's first prenatal massage!

Information courtesy of www.americanpregnancy.org