5 Things You Must Do If You Have Seasonal Allergies

This is the time of year when any of you who suffer from allergies know the dread that’s coming. You want to go outside and enjoy the good weather but you know with that comes a face that feels like it’s going to explode, eyes are watering, constant sniffling, just misery and what options do you have?

You could stay indoors and you still deal with house and dust mites and miss out on the good weather; you can reach for over-the-counter drugs that might give temporary relief but don’t fix anything; or you can actually try and attack the problem. So here are the things we recommend you do and the more of them you do in combination, the better results you will get.

#1 Get A Neti-pot

Get a neti pot. Get those nasal and sinus cavities drained out as often as you can because the less irritants that you have up in there the less that your body will cause an allergic reaction to it.

#2 Get Apple Cider Vinegar

Get some apple cider vinegar, organic if possible, a spoonful of that with water every day will help calm down the histamine response and you can also really make your neti pot more powerful by adding a little bit of that vinegar to it. The other thing to note with the neti pot, use filtered or distilled water. The chemicals that are in tap water like fluoride and chlorine, they’ll actually cause an irritation to your immune system and make it kick in and work even harder which means a more over-the-top allergic response.

#3 Eat Quercitin

You want to eat as many foods as you can that contain a substance called quercitin: onions; green teas; citrus fruits; and cruciferous vegetables – the greens. Not only do they contain this they’re also great immune strengtheners anyway and avoid sugar because that decreases the immune response and basically any allergy reaction that you have it still comes back to the immune system – the stronger your immune system is the less it will go an over-the-top reaction. Also probiotics and vitamin D3 are huge for the immune system.

#4 Use Essential Oils

You can use some essential oils diffuse them around the house either eucalyptus oil or frankincense both have been proven to help a lot with killing house and dust mites but also helping your own body clear out those cavities. You can also put them on your body behind the ears you can put a very tiny bit under the nose, mix them with coconut oil and rub them on the chest. But you want to keep those diffusing 24-7 in the house.

#5 Get Adjusted

The last thing that we recommend go and get adjusted by your chiropractor. What a chiropractic adjustment will do is a number of things: it will boost your immune system’s response; it will help calm down the over response of the histamine and cortisol; but we can also do some release work through here to help open up those sinus cavities and get everything to drain a lot faster than what’s currently happening in your body. Please share this information with anyone you know that suffers from allergies, and be sure to contact Thornton Chiropractors to schedule an appointment!

Exercise, Stress, and the Brain

Exercise is interesting in terms of effects on the brain because it works in about 4 or 5 different ways. One of the most obvious ways is blood flow. If you get your heart working, your brain is going to be filled with oxygen rich blood and nutrients, so that’s the main way that it helps. The other way that’s sort of interesting, is it’s been thought that exercise produces new neurons.

Exercise Induces Production of Growth Factors

So exercise induces the production of growth factors. One is called BDNF, or brain-derived neurotrophic factor,  and it actually stimulates the production of new brain cells. 20 years ago we were told you can’t get any new brain cells, so when you’re born, that’s your lot and you’re not going to make any more. But more recently we’ve found that exercise is a really good way of stimulating brain cell production and some of these are functional.  So just this notion, that something that you can do can generate new brain cells, is a really great thing to think about.

How Exercise Helps The Brain

You might be wondering why exercise helps the brain. Well, what one theory is, is that it just reduces stress. So maybe it’s not that blood is coming to the brain, but maybe you are less stressed. This theory was something that imaging allowed us to test.  So scans and imaging were done on people with high cortisol levels.  High cortisol levels occur if you’re stressed, if you’re angry about something, or even if you’re stuck in traffic!  One of the things found is that the people with high cortisol levels, lost brain tissue faster and that is a serious problem! So if we now know that high cortisol levels enables the body to lose brain tissue faster, we can now look at ways of reducing your cortisol.

Ways To Reduce Cortisol Levels

We can reduce our cortisol levels and decrease stress by exercising, walking, taking breaks.  You can eat a good diet, you can exercise, you can reduce stress, you can make sure you’re well educated on health topics so these things just build up a sort of mental bank account for the future. Even though it seems like work is hard, you’re building a store of brain connections that you’ll need the for the rest of your life. So take care of your brain!  If you need help with coming up with a plan to reduce stress and to lead a healthier lifestyle, contact Thornton Chiropractor to schedule a consultation.  We are happy to help you out!

Does Chiropractic Relieve Stress?

One of the things that my patient report to me is that one of the most profound effect a chiropractor has on them, is their ability to reduce their stress level and also recover from stress. Our cranium and our spine house our brain and spinal cord. And all of the spinal nerves that are exiting the spine, innervate every single organ and cell in our body. By adjusting the spine, when we find misalignment, restrictions or what we call subluxations, we’re able to profoundly restore normal nerve function. And this has a profound relaxing affect on the nervous system. I like to say that chiropractic care helps nervous system become more highly organized.

We noticed that there is a profound shift in the nervous system. Particularly in the automatic nervous system. The parts of the nervous system that functions without our constant awareness. The sympathetic nervous system our the fight or flight response that most people live in all day long, shifts after chiropractic care. And the power sympathetic nervous becomes more dominate. The power sympathetic nervous system is the part of the nervous system we would like to be more active.

It’s the part of the nervous system that controls the immune system and digestion. It tends to slow the heart rate and decrease blood pressure to normal. So it’s very important that we have a dynamic balance between these two nervous system. Chiropractic care is one of the most effective and profound ways I know to balance that nervous system. The other thing that’s really very powerful about chiropractic care is the kind of interaction you’ll have with your chiropractor. Really talking about what’s happening in your body. My patients report that when they go out into the world after their adjustment, their whole experience of life is very different. They feel very rested but they also feel alert. They fell calm and they’re really ready to take on the world.  If you would like to experience firsthand what it is like to get an adjustment, give us a call or contact Thornton Chiropractors for a consultation!

The Benefits Of Chiropractic Care For Children

When it comes to chiropractic adjustments and children, we get asked what exactly does the adjustment do for them. Especially when we discuss why is it important for the overall health of the child. Well, we as chiropractors are concerned about the small misalignments that happen along the spinal column. It’s those small misalignments that create the interference to the nerve system which in turn does not allow the brain to control the body like it was intended to be controlled. This is where we can really start to get into some trouble when we are talking about trying to be healthy at an optimal level.

Our bodies are dynamic enough in that it can handle a lot of things that are thrown its way. However, at a certain point it will reach its breaking point and it will start to have the symptoms that we may experience. Now when we are talking about children, we are talking about things like colic, allergies, digestive troubles, headaches, and things of that nature. In infants, we will not be able to tell these things, but as a child grows, they are obviously able to communicate these symptoms. But it’s these types of symptoms that can be greatly reduced by making sure that the nervous system is free from interference.

Now it’s not uncommon for a lot of the adults that come into our office to express to us that how their babies or their children, or their adolescents are actually sleeping better. They are more focused at school. They are making better grades, they’re becoming better athletes, they’re reading better. All kinds of things are affected by making sure that the brain can communicate with the rest of the body. As a doctor of chiropractic and a father I’m committed to addressing the health of my children and the children of our community. If you or someone you know has a child that may be suffering, please contact Thornton Chiropractors and find out what can be done to help your child.

Does An Apple A Day Really Keep The Doctor Away?

Does an apple a day really keep the doctor away? That’s a public health message that’s been around since 1866, but is it true? You don’t know until you put it to the test. The “Association Between Apple Consumption and Physician Visits,” published in the AMA’s internal medicine journal. Objective: To examine the relationship between eating an apple a day and keeping the doctor away. Promoted by the lay media and powerful special interest groups, including the US Apple Association, so powerful that Big Apple recently spent a whopping $7,000 lobbying politicians? The beneficial effects of apple consumption may include a facilitation of weight loss, protection of the brain, cancer suppression, a reduction in asthma symptoms, improved cardiovascular health.

So, apple consumers ought to require less medical care, right? “Although some may jest, considering the relatively low cost of apples, a prescription for apple consumption could potentially reduce national health care spending if the aphorism holds true.” So, they compared daily apple eaters to non-apple eaters, and asked if they had been to the doctor in the last year, been hospitalized, seen a shrink or took a prescription medication within the last month. 8,000 individuals surveyed and only about 1 out of 10 reported eating an apple over the last 24 hours, and the evidence does not support that an apple a day keeps the doctor away. So, maybe it takes more than an apple a day.

Maybe we need to center our whole diet around plant foods. However, the small fraction of US adults who eat an apple a day do appear to use fewer prescription medications. So, maybe the proverb should be updated to clarify that, if anything, apple eating may help keep the pharmacist away. But, hey, based on the average medical prescription cost, the difference in annual prescription medication cost per capita between apple eaters and non-apple eaters could be hundreds of dollars. So, if all US adults were apple eaters, we could save nearly $50 billion. Of course, if you factor in the cost of the apples themselves, we’d only get a net savings of like $19 billion.

If this all seems a bit tongue-in-cheek apple polishing, you’ll note this was published suspiciously close to April Fool’s day. And, indeed, this was in the tradition of the British Medical Journal’s annual Christmas issue that features scientifically rigorous yet light-hearted research, which itself took on the apple issue to model the effects on stroke and heart attack mortality of all older adults being prescribed either a cholesterol-lowering statin drug or an apple a day. Basically, they took studies like this where you see this nice dose response where the more fruit you eat, the lower your stroke risk appears to fall— and similar data for heart disease— compared to the known drug effect, and concluded that prescribing an apple a day is likely to have a similar effect on population stroke and heart attack mortality as giving everyone statin drugs instead.

And, hey, apples only have good side effects. Choosing apples rather than statins may avoid more than a thousand excess cases of muscle damage, and more than 12,000 excess diabetes diagnoses, because statins increase the risk of diabetes. And this was in the UK. I mean here in the US, one would expect five times those numbers, though ironically, the cost of apples is likely to be greater than those of statin drugs. I mean like Generic Lipitor is like 20 cents a day. So, yes, with similar reductions in mortality, the 150-year-old health promotion message of an apple a day is able to match modern medicine and is likely to have fewer side effects. But apples are a few pennies a day more expensive, not to mention the increased time and difficulty associated with consuming an apple compared to a statin.

This was just some food for thought brought to you by Thornton Chiropractor.  So please sign up to our newsletter or give us a call regarding our New Patient Special!

4 Reasons To Visit A Chiropractor-Even if your back doesn’t hurt

People visit chiropractors everyday for different reasons and chiropractic offers many benefits beyond treating back pain, neck pain, or headaches. I’m going to share with you some of the lesser-known benefits of chiropractic care and why you should visit a chiropractor even if your back doesn’t hurt.

Reason #1: Improved Sleep
I hear far too often that many people want to sleep better and to wake up feeling refreshed. They’re not sleeping well due to pain, stress, and overall body aches. Your bed is NOT the problem. Before you spend thousands on a new bed, you should consult Thornton Chiropractor. You’re not sleeping well and you’re tossing and turning because of aches and pains and the stress levels that you have. Your body just can’t get comfortable and you never get that deep sleep that you need.

You will see soon after beginning care that you will sleep more deeply. Wake up feeling more refreshed and experience an overall increase in health and wellness. Waking up tired really really stinks and your day isn’t going to start off very well, especially if you need a pot of coffee just to get going. By the end of the day all you want to do is sit on the couch and be left alone because you’re so tired. And that isn’t healthy either!

Reason #2:  Improved Digestion
Common digestive problems such as IBS, constipation, and reflux are often tied to factors such as high stress levels, a poor diet, and poor posture. In counteracting these conditions, studies support the use of chiropractic adjustments to help.

Reason #3:  Decreased Stress
A combination of factors seem to be responsible for chiropractic stress relief benefits which include increased relaxation, decreased muscle tension, and improved circulation. Chiropractors know that by adjusting the spine we help reduce physical stress on your body and improve the function of your central nervous system.

Reason #4:  Boosting Your Immune System
There is evidence to support that chiropractic treatment boosts your immune system because the nervous system and immune system are so tightly interlinked. This is not a new concept either.  If you want to see some interesting facts, Google chiropractic and the influenza epidemic of 1918.  As you can see there are many conditions that respond to chiropractic. If you’re seeking a more natural way to relieve stress, boost your immune system, improve digestion, or just sleep better contact Thornton Chiropractor. Chiropractic is the way to go!

Tips for Parents Of Picky Eaters

Does this sound familiar: “when I go to the grocery store, I know there are five hundred kinds of vegetables and fruit, but I buy the same three all the time.” About one third of parents say their child is a picky eater and, in many cases, it’s nothing to worry about.  The behavior is one of the few ways children can exert an influence on their parents and caregivers and that’s through eating or not eating. It’s a natural stage of developing some independence. But there are some things parents can do. Introducing a variety of foods in the toddler ages are crucial because it is such a short window of time. When children get older, it’s hard to accept new flavors. Parents also need to keep in mind that kids are more tuned in to their satiety cues than adults. Also, a child’s appetite will fluctuate at various stages. We are so used to seeing our portion sizes, that as adults we forget that kids have a smaller tummy and they don’t need as much food.

That means don’t bribe them into eating that extra bite by promising a cookie. When approaching mealtime, we recommend a division of responsibilities. Parents decide what, when, and where to eat and children decide whether to eat and how much. It can help to involve a child in preparing meals, but don’t cook them a separate meal. One family meal, no short order cooking.  If you’re concerned with your child’s growth, be sure to consult your physician. Seek their advice to make sure your child is getting the nutrients they need and to rule out any underlying medical conditions that may be contributing to a change in growth.  And unless your health care provider gives you specific instruction otherwise, rely on healthy food options instead of supplements!

For more information on healthy tips, be sure to sign up to for our newsletter.  Interested in speaking with us, contact us to schedule a consultation!

Is Sitting Around Really Bad For You?

Is sitting around really bad for you?

Couple on sofa with TV remote

With all the craziness going on outside in today’s world, you might be tempted to snuggle down into the safety of your sofa and simply avoid all the bad stuff out there. But is sitting around more dangerous than you think? It’s a sad fact of life that everything we do – including the things we decide not to do – has consequences. And there’s mounting evidence that prolonged periods of physical inactivity are not good for us.

In 2011, researchers examined a large group of subjects and found that sedentary behavior – sitting around in other words – was associated with a whole host of undesirable effects. These included increased waist circumference, elevated cholesterol, and blood-sugar levels, and early markers for heart disease. “Big deal,” you might say, “tell me something I don’t know!”

Well how about this: these trends were independent of the subjects’ exercise levels. In other words, even following a regular exercise routine may not counter the effects of excessive sitting. A bummer in more ways than one! So what’s the solution?

What’s The Solution?

The answer may be a simple as taking a stand – quite literally. Recent studies have identified a number of positive effects associated with intermittent breaks in sedentary activity. For instance, it seems that simply standing for a few minutes every half an hour or so may reduce the risk of diabetes and heart disease by stimulating your metabolism. And while regular cardio sessions are important, low to medium levels of physical activities such as walking or doing household chores have also been associated with similar health benefits.

There are plenty of obvious risks we need to navigate around each day. But there is increasing evidence that our year-round habit of sitting on our backsides may be a risky proposition than we’d ever thought. So don’t forget to stretch your legs!  Need more health tips or a regimented routine?  Visit Discover Thornton Colorado Chiropractors or give us a call for a consultation.

eating-healthy

7 Tips to Make Eating Healthy Easier

It seems that people in general want to eat healthy, but they just don’t have enough time.  Sometimes we associate eating healthy with being expensive and we would like to dispel that thought.  Sure you can probably get a Big Mac or a burrito for less than you would buying groceries or items to prepare a meal.  However, if you plan and shop properly, it can be both convenient and affordable for you in the long run.  So here are 1o tips that will make eating healthy easier for you!

  1. Batch Meals. Make more than you need so you have leftovers.  You can freeze them or plan to eat them throughout the upcoming days.
  2. Make the same stuff over and over.  You don’t have to be a culinary chef or even start looking up special recipes.  Just make the same few things that you know you like to eat. This makes shopping a lot easier and you spend less time stressing about what you will need to get at the store. Now when making the same stuff over and over again, you can switch it up.  If you follow step one and batch your foods, you can mix and match your pre-planned meals! Maybe come up with a dozen things you like to prepare to eat and go from there.
  3. Drink your green.  Yes, drink your vegetables.  If you don’t have a blender, I would consider picking up one as it is going to make preparation a lot faster.  Don’t worry about a fancy high cost blender.  Really any blender will do; just drink your greens.
  4. You don’t have to LOVE everything you eat. You don’t have to like everything and you don’t have to always eat healthy. So just go easy on yourself. The important thing to remember is that you are trying and making an effort.  We all have our days where we aren’t feeling like eating a salad.  So don’t beat yourself up.
  5. Eat what you don’t have to count. What I mean by that is, eating things like quinoa and green vegetables in abundance really isn’t going to hurt your caloric intake.  It’s not like making sure you only eat one cupcake or counting how many calories are in a soda.  Start picking up healthy habits so you don’t have to focus on how many calories each food item has.That’s the stuff you want to eat.
  6. Shape the path.  Make it easy for you to stay on the path to eating healthy.  Get rid of the junk food in your house and keep it stocked with healthy snacks, which leads to tip number 7.
  7. Healthy snacks.  Get or make quick and easy healthy snacks.  The reason why most of us eat junk food is because it is already “processed” and packaged up for our convenience.  If you like dips, perhaps get hummus or a queso dip that you have on hand when hunger strikes.

Remember, stay positive and stay focused.  If you are trying to lose weight, maybe switch your thinking to “trying to gain health.”  Thinking of it in a positive light gives us a better attitude about doing something.  With eating healthy, the pounds will shed and you will have accomplished your goals and also given your body something to thank you for.  If you are having a hard time getting back on track and need some guidance with health and wellness, contact Thornton Colorado Chiropractors.  We are happy to help you out!

constructing healthy plate

Constructing a Healthy Plate

A healthy meal begins with assembling a healthy plate. And before you bring anything to that plate, it might be worthwhile to buy a set of smaller dinner plates cups and glasses. Interestingly, many hardware stores sell these very inexpensively, but they’re harder to find in fancy kitchen stores. Mostly because small plates have gone out of style. One of the reasons we like to obsess about nutrients, and the industry likes us to obsess about nutrients, is a way of distracting us from the quantities of food.

We are eating more. Thus, this supersizing has made plate sizes bigger. Soda sizes are bigger and the portions have been doubled. The bigger the portion, the more you will eat! So, size matters when it comes to your plate. But once you’ve found a reasonably sized plate, the first step in constructing the meal should be deciding what is my vegetable component of this meal going to be? We tend to start by thinking about the protein when we’re planning a meal. If we can think of the vegetables as the feature then the entire meal will likely end up being healthier.

The plate itself should consist of about one half plant based food, ideally with a mix of different colored vegetables. Different colored vegetables contain different micro nutrients. So, eating a variety of them maximizes our nutrient coverage. In general, eating a variety of foods is also beneficial because it minimizes the chances of getting sick from potential contaminants in any one food. The remaining one half of the plate should be equally divided into whole grains and lean protein rich foods. These foods can come from animal sources or from plant sources, but again variety is good. Eating chicken every night of the week is almost certainly not the best way to stay healthy or excited about your next meal.  Next comes thirst.

Most of the time the best drink to quench thirst and keep us hydrated and healthy is plain, clean water. The human body is made up of more than 50% water so don’t forget to replace it during mealtime. Drinking water before each meal may even be helpful for weight management. The variations are endless. But getting into the habit of creating a healthy plate, sitting down for mealtimes, and taking time to enjoy our meals are priceless.

For more healthy tips, be sure to sign up for our newsletter.  Interested in speaking with us directly, give us a call to schedule a consultation!