Tai Chi Beats Aerobic Exercise for Fibromyalgia

Compared with aerobic exercise, the traditional martial art of tai chi is as good as, or better than, aerobic exercise for improving the overall severity of fibromyalgia symptoms, new research shows.
— Read on www.medscape.com/viewarticle/894331

A great article. Although I have never tried this form of exercise, it looks worth looking into!

If you need help discovering the best exercise or eating plan to improve your health, my book can help you! Click on my book title link to learn more!

Second Chance at Health- Learn to Love Active Living and Clean Eating.

Laughing Can Lower Your Blood Sugar!

Laughing does the body good.

What is Diabetes Type 2?

Diabetes type 2 is diagnosed when your fasting blood sugar is found to be over 126 mg/dL and is verified as being at that level consistently overtime. Diabetes type 2 is most often a result of obesity along with a sedentary lifestyle. It is diagnosed with a blood test.

How is Diabetes Type 2 Treated?

Once diabetes type 2 is identified treatment will includemedicine (usually by mouth), and lifestyle changes. These life stylerecommendations include lowering intake of carbohydrates and increasingphysical activity. Those sound like very common and very pedestrianrecommendation…

What Can Cause Blood Sugar Elevations?

Excessive foods, including sweets can cause excessive blood sugars. A sedentary lifestyle can cause blood sugars to rise. Medications can result in elevated blood sugars. For example medicines for high cholesterol and high blood pressure can cause blood sugars to increase. Another commonly prescribed medicine given for inflammation is steroids, and these can cause blood sugars to increase.

But did you know, in addition to external things, internalemotions can affect our blood sugars? Yes! Stress, anxiety, fear and sorrowhave been shown to result in elevated blood sugars. It has been shown thatthese emotions affect our hormones in a negative way and produce physicalchanges.

Ok, here is the fun part…positive emotions can have apositive effect on our blood sugar. In a Japanese study, the participantsattended a lecture, one with no jokes and the next day attended a comedylecture, and the blood sugars were checked via finger stick. The ones who hadattended the funny lecture and laughed had reduced post lunch blood sugars.They concluded that there were two possible explanations: first, that themuscles used for laughing used up some of the sugar in the blood, and second,that the laughter actually created chemical changes in the body resulting inlower blood sugars. Whatever the “cause”, the result was a better and lowerblood sugar. So the conclusion of the study was that laughter inhibits the riseof blood sugar after eating.

The FUN way to Lower your Blood Sugar

So to revisit my promise that I would tell you the fun wayto reduce your blood sugar…is to laugh daily.

We all have different funny bones, so you will have to seekout what makes you giggle. Here are some fun suggestions:

-Join a laughing yoga (yes that is real) check out this link.  Laughter Yoga 

They even have a skype laughter clubs 

Your body cannot tell the difference between real laughterand fake laughter, it responds the same!

  • Hang around your funny friend(s)
  • Spend time with young children
  • Que up some of your favorite YouTube Videos
  • Look for comical occurrences in everyday life
  • Keep your favorite funny movies available
  • Read your favorite comics daily
  • Fake laugh every day for 15-20 minutes if youhave not laughed by the end of the day

So what are you waiting for? Take your prescribed medicine, eat a healthy diet, get up and move, andLAUGH!

 If you want assistance in learning the best diet and exercise plan order my Second Chance at Health-Learn to Love Active Living and Clean Eating.

Reference:

Laughter Lowered the Increase of Postprandial Blood sugar.Retrieved from http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/26/5/1651.fullFIKahpYO

Bone Loss and Fitness After 40


Food sources of calcium, isolated on white. Includes milk, yogurt, almonds, cheeses, broccoli, salmon, and avocado.

Do you want another reason to exercise? An active lifestyle with nutritionally motivated eating can maintain bone health after 40, particularly in women. Over 53 million in the U.S. suffer from bone loss (osteoporosis) or are at risk for the condition. Osteoporosis can lead to increased risk for bone fractures that can take a long time to heal and impact ones life negatively.

Normal Bones

Bones have the primary role of supporting the body and providing minerals for body functions. Bones are made up of a hard exterior filled with a spongy material that is constantly being broken down and rebuilt. The body utilizes the calcium that is located in the spongy part of the bone for body processes. As we age, the spongy material in the bone is not rebuilt as quickly which results in larger spaces and the hard outer surface becomes thinner, and weaker. Bone mass typically peaks between ages 18- 20 which means this is when the bones are their strongest, so it is important to build them early. But if you did not do this, it is not all a loss, changes to your activity and diet now can help.

As women age, and approach menopause the loss of estrogen affects bone mass resulting in bone loss. This bone loss puts women at risk for osteoporosis (bone loss). Men also can experience bone loss.

Bone Loss Risk Factors

Factors that affect bone mass and rate of bone loss include genetics and lifestyle. One cannot easily alter genetic predisposition. The factors that one cannot alter include gender (females at higher risk than males), race (white females are at higher risk), so I am going to discuss the lifestyle risks related to increased bone loss that you can alter in your favor.

Lifestyle Factors Affecting Bone Mass

Hormones, nutrition, physical activity, smoking, a sedentary lifestyle, and even alcohol impact bone health. Hormones, particularly estrogen affects bone strength. Loss of estrogen leads to loss of bone after menopause, and increases the risk for hip fracture. Hip fractures are expensive and can lead to complications, even death.  Diets that lack adequate calcium intake results in lower bone mass and put the person at risk in later years for hip fracture. Smoking also affects bone density, and the younger the person started smoking results in less dense bones. A sedentary lifestyle also results in an overall decreased bone mass. Alcohol consumption results in lower bone mass (although science has yet to uncover the reason). Clearly these are all factors that one has control over.

Actions to Take

Evaluate your own risk. If you are over 40 and close to menopause as a female, have the non modifiable risk factors, or believe that you have some of the lifestyle risk factors, seek advice from your doctor about your risk for osteoporosis.

If you are over age 65, then a Dexa scan (like an x-ray) is a test that can help identify your risk. A T-Score of <-2.5 indicates osteoporosis. The recommendation for this screening is after age 65, and your insurance company may not pay for it before then. If this is the case, then you should make the diet and activity changes NOW so that when the test is done you pass with flying colors.

To Lower Your Risk of Osteoporosis

Ensure adequate intake of dietary calcium, ensure that you get enough vitamin D (this can be tested with a blood test), and exercise. Calcium is best obtained from foods that contain it, such as dark leafy greens-think kale, collard greens, milk products, or dietary supplements. Women over 50 need 1,200 mg of calcium per day and men need 1000 mg daily and 1,200 mg per day from age 51-70.

Dairy Sources of Calcium: 1 cup of 2% milk- 259 mg; 1 inch cube of cheddar cheese 120 mg; 1 cup cottage cheese 174 mg.

Non Dairy Sources of Calcium: 1 cup white beans-191 mg; ½ tin of canned salmon (with bones)- 232 mg; 8 whole dried figs 109 mg; 1 cup leafy kale-179 mg.

Sources of vitamin D: sunlight, fortified foods (in the U.S. milk and many cereal is fortified), fatty fish, beef liver, cheese and egg yolks.

Natural sources of vitamin D and Calcium. Healthy food background. Top view. Space for text

Vitamin D testing is important and your provider may recommend a supplement. Sun exposure during the proper season is a good way to get your vitamin D.

Weight bearing exercise promotes bone density by stressing the bones which signal the body to deposit calcium strengthening mineral. Weight bearing exercises include jogging, walking, tennis and even dancing.

Stop smoking and limit alcohol to social drinking.

Preventing Bone Loss After 40

Preventing bone loss, if you don’t have it, is as easy as eating a healthy, balanced diet, exercising, not smoking and drinking in moderation.

I can assist you in your journey to health and fitness. This may be a lifesaving action that you take. Osteoporosis and the risk for a hip fracture can be devastating.

Don’t take your chances with your bone health. Ensure adequate vitamin D and calcium intake, and be intentionally active.

Order my book, Second Chance at Health-Learn to Love Active Living and Clean Eating now, and begin your journey to health.

References

Osteoporosis: Peak Bone Mass in Women, 2015. Retrieved from https://www.bones.nih.gov/health-info/bone/osteoporosis/bone-mass

Osteoporosis in Aging. 2017. Retrieved from https://newsinhealth.nih.gov/special-issues/seniors/osteoporosis-aging

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