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Monthly Archives: March 2018

Fix Flat Feet

Flat feet affects all ages – even babies who are just learning to walk. But in the case of young children, the issue will usually correct itself as the child grown and the bones, ligaments, tendons and muscles strengthen with use and walking. For adults, however, no matter what the reason for the flat feet, some work is needed to fix the problem.

You can do daily to strengthen and ultimately help to fix your flat feet.

Keep them straight. Take a minute to evaluate your standing position. Stand up and walk around the room for a minute. Stop and look straight ahead. Now, without changing the position of your feet, look down and see which way your feet are pointing. For most people, if they were to draw an imaginary straight line out of their pinky toe they would find their feet are pointing outward – almost to the point of “duck feet”. If that’s the case with you, turn your foot at the ankle so that the imaginary line goes straight out in front of you – so that the lines from both feet are parallel and headed toward any object in the distance in front of you. Remember that position. Every time you stop to stand still take notice of your foot position and adjust accordingly.

Roll the knees out. Once your feet are in the straight position mentioned above, try to bounce your knee caps up and down. Can you? Most people can’t. Keep trying. Usually it’s easiest to try to raise them up and then let them go. Once you’ve bounced them up and down a few times try to roll your knees open without lifting your feet or bending your knees. Be patient, this isn’t easy! Imagine trying to get your knees to look at each side wall. What you should notice is that your feet miraculously “get” an arch. Again, every time you stop to stand still, get those feet in position and try the knee roll.

Lift up your toes. This one you can do while you are standing (hold on to a chair if needed) or while you’re sitting. With your feet on the ground, spread your toes wide and then lift your toes into the air while keeping the ball of your foot and your heel on the ground. Drop them to the ground again. Now the next time try lifting each toe up in a wave starting with the big toe over to the pinky toe until they’re all up again. Put them back down in opposite order. This helps to strengthen the individual muscles in the foot. If you’re standing while trying this exercise, remember your foot position and try to keep those knees rolled.

Massage the arch. Using a tennis ball or similar child’s play ball, massage the arch of your foot daily by rolling your foot back and forth on the ball. Stand and sink into the ball with your foot but don’t put your full body weight on the ball. Switch to the other foot.

Stretch your calves. One of foot guru, body alignment expert and biomechanist, Katy Bowman’s go to exercises for any type of foot problem is a calf stretch. Put the ball of your foot on the top of a rolled up towel and drop your heel to the ground. Keeping the weight in the heel of that foot, slowly try to inch your free foot forward. Switch to the other side.

Gluten Free Diet

Gluten free is not more nutritious

Many people have the misconception that foods that are gluten free have more minerals and vitamins but this is not true. You can develop mineral and vitamin deficiencies quickly if you do not have the guidance of a nutritionist. Most of the foods that are not fortified or enriched with nutrients like iron and folic acid that wheat flours are. When you get rid of gluten, it will often mean adding more fat and sugar to your diet. When you take out the gluten the food will probably not taste as good so they add extra sodium, fat, and sugar to make up for the lack of taste. For example, a regular blueberry muffin has 340 calories with 24 grams of sugar and 17 grams of fat. Gluten free blueberry muffins have 370 calories and 31 grams of sugar and 13 grams of fat.

You could gain weight

Some think that when they go on gluten free diets that they will start to lose weight but there is no evidence that going gluten free is a good strategy to lose the extra weight. The reason that this diet could lead to obesity or being overweight is the extra calories, fat, and sugar. Those that have celiac disease, which is caused by gluten, will often gain weight when they first go free of gluten. This is because of the damage that gluten had caused to their small intestine prevents their body from digesting food the right way. Once gluten has been given up their digestive system will heal so they can absorb key nutrients and vitamins from the foods they are eating.

Your grocery bill may increase

Food that is free of this substance is more expensive that food that is not. It can be double the price or more. For example, a serving of regular brownies costs approximately 8 cents but for a serving of gluten free brownie is approximately 28 cents. One reason that they are more expensive is the added costs that the manufacturer incurs in order to meet labeling and certification regulations.

Become a Non Smoker

What is lacking is the right kind of motivation.

Has the fear of a heart attack, emphysema, or lung cancer ever stopped you? No. The reason is that smoking kills nerve endings in your mouth, throat and lungs. You don’t smell or taste as much as you used to, right? Years go by, and that’s how the damage is done. So since you feel no pain, knowing the negative consequences of smoking isn’t sufficient motivation. And since the majority of cigarettes you smoke are simply out of habit, you don’t think about the dangers, even with the graphic images on the cigarette pack or dire warnings from your doctor.

Motivation only comes in two flavors: fear, pain, suffering… or self-interest.

Here’s what I have found helps people be successful long-term: focusing on the positive rather than the negative… on what you want, and not on what you don’t want. Hypnosis is a focusing and amplifying tool that can help you to do just that.

In other words, it is more useful to focus on “being a non-smoker”, rather than on “not smoking”. Try not to think about a pink elephant right now and you’ll understand what I mean. Try not to think about smoking and that’s all you can think about… when can you have your next cigarette. For most smokers, thinking about “not smoking” causes great anxiety!

And when is quitting something a positive? It sounds like failure. Focusing on the positive, and on being different in situations when you used to smoke is what makes being a non-smoker more sustainable.

After all, who wants to live with a dark cloud hanging over their head? Do you need to amplify more stress and worry in your life? That could cause a heart attack!

Once you have chosen your day to become a non-smoker, reducing the amount you smoke per day rather than stopping “cold turkey” is paramount. Going from smoking 10, 15, or 20 cigarettes (or more) per day is like jumping off a fast moving train. It’s going to be difficult and turn your world upside down.

The key here is to build experiences of delayed gratification rather than generating fear of deprivation which drives you to smoke more.

Cutting down to 2-3 cigarettes per day by smoking a brand you don’t like and altering your ritualistic smoking behaviors will make the transition much, much smoother. This is the principle behind nicotine replacement methods. Unfortunately for most, with nicotine replacement, you have not addressed the hand that still reaches for a cigarette out of habit. It’s not about chemicals; it’s about increasing self-awareness, and you can’t put self-awareness in a pill or patch.

Identify Trigger Finger Symptoms

Stiffness in Finger Resulting in Discomfort

If your fingers frequently become stiff and ache or throb, these are generally early warning signs that your tendons are enduring too much. Stiffness is nearly always associated with inflammation, and in this case inflammation of the tendons. While some finger and hand stiffness comes with age or arthritic conditions, excessive prominence should be examined by a physician.

Noticeable Noise When Moving Finger

The most telltale sign of trigger finger symptoms is the clicking or popping sound that a stiff finger makes when trying to move that digit. When the tendons swell, they will struggle to adequately perform in the sheath. This results in a popping or clicking sound as the tendons are forced to expand and contract.

Tender and Sensitive Joints

Sensitive joints are common with old age and can be further instigated by weather patterns and pressure in the air. When experiencing these symptoms, don’t just write them off as age telling you that your hands and fingers hurt. Get an examination to be sure that the tendons have not been compromised.

Finger Locks Up or Stays Bent

The surest sign that you should seek medical advice are locked fingers that remain bent in the same position. This is typically the result of fully inflamed tendons and connective tissues. The tendons have become so inflamed, in fact, that they are barely able to pass through the sheath. Such symptoms should involve an immediate trip to see your hand doctor.