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Avoiding Stress Fractures

Low bone density makes people over 65 more susceptible to  stress fractures. 

Stress fractures are a kind of fracture which will partially separate the bone tissues in a fault line which could have been the weakest point in that part of the bone. 

Below are some of the reasons this happens:

  • bone density decreases with age
  • vision and sense of balance often declines
  • reaction time slows
  • muscles weaken with age and inactivity
  • Low levels of sex hormones (testosterone and some forms of estrogen) are associated with an increased risk of osteoporosis.
  • Endocrine disorders (such as hyperthyroidism and gastrointestinal disorders) may interfere with calcium and vitamin D absorption
  • Osteoporosis makes bones more prone to a fracture, even with relatively minor trauma
  • High levels of homocysteine which is a toxic ‘natural’ amino acid linked to the cause of heart disease among other negative health affects

 

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to lower your risk of getting a stress facture. 

  • In order to help bones remain strong it’s important to get adequate levels of calcium and vitamin D.
  • Avoid excessive caffeine intake (over three cups of coffee a day or the equivalent from other foods) because it can interfere with the absorption of vitamin D and calcium which can result in decreased bone density.
  • Avoid smoking and excessive consumption of alcohol can interfere with the normal process of bone building and remodeling, resulting in bone loss.
  • Get regular exercise to strengthen bones and decrease the likelihood of falls.
  • Add more folate to your diet to reduce homocysteine levels. The best way to do this is to consume more fruits and vegetables. Leafy green vegetables are particularly good sources of folate. Beans and lentils also have a high amount of folate in them. With stress fractures being a documented risk as we age, you may want to follow the above suggestions to minimize your risk. 

    Have a healthy day, 

    Larry Berman

Lower Your Stroke Risk by 16%

A new study indicates that eating fish three times a week greatly lowers your chance of experiencing a stroke.

The study was conducted in Sweden.  Over a ten year period those that ate fish 3 or more times a week were 16% less likely to have a stroke as compared to someone that ate fish less than once a week.

Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian of the Harvard School of Public Health who reviewed the study says, “when choosing fish to eat, it’s best to opt for fish that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, found most abundantly in fatty fish like salmon, mackerel and albacore tuna, but any fish is better than none.”

The study author, Dr. Susanna Larsson of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm explained, “these fatty acids may reduce the risk of stroke by reducing blood pressure and blood (fat) concentrations.”

With other studies showing similar results, you might want to include fish 3 times a week in your diet.

Have a healthy day,

Larry Berman

Studies Show That Acupressure Has Science Behind It

Studies Show That Chinese Healing System Has Science Behind It 

Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese healing art that involves stimulating points on the body with thin needles.  

Up until recently most Western medical practitioners didn’t put much faith in it because it’s based on Chinese beliefs of a life force or “chi” flowing through the body. 

However, some prestigious western researchers decided that while they might not be sure why it works, if it does it is possible to verify and measure. 

One such researcher is Harvard Medical School neuroscientist named Vitaly Napadow, Ph.D., L.Ac. 

Using the latest technologies in neuroimaging and genomics, Dr. Napadow and other associates have been able to document how acupuncture affects the body. They have actually been able to see physiological effects. 

“With the advent of noninvasive brain imaging we were able to begin looking at human brain response to acupuncture and start to evaluate potential mechanisms in humans,” says Dr. Napadow. “And they found differences in this brain response between people with chronic pain and healthy controls.”

For example, they’ve recorded changes in the brain’s pain centers with acupuncture. Additionally, they’ve observed gene expression and molecular changes in the nervous and immune systems. 

One such case was in research on carpal tunnel syndrome, which can cause pain and numbness due to compression of nerves in the wrist. Dr. Napadow and colleagues performed fMRI before and after acupuncture and found that patients with carpal tunnel syndrome responded to acupuncture with greater activation in an area of the brain known as the hypothalamus and deactivation in another area known as the amygdala. These two areas of the brain are involved in behavior, emotions, long-term memory, and maintenance of a persistent pain state. 

Acupuncture appears to affect several mechanisms in the brain and spinal cord, including those involved in pain and inflammation.  So, there is the potential for it to help relieve pain for quite a few different ailments.

If you’re interested in relieving pain naturally without ingesting any drugs, you might want to look into acupuncture.

Have a healthy day,

Larry Berman

Yoga Has Provwn Health Benefits

A newly released article published by the National Institute of Health says that the ancient art of yoga can provide genuine health benefits.

According to the report, people have been practicing yoga for centuries to improve their strength, serenity and wellness.

However, western science has been reluctant to embrace it because of it’s roots in ancient Indian philosophy.

Recently, a significant amount of research has been accumulated that has provided scientific evidence that yoga provides real health benefits.

Research has found that yoga can help people who are dealing with health problems as wide-ranging as back pain, chronic headaches, sleeplessness, obesity, neck aches, upset stomach, anxiety, depression and high blood pressure, said Sat Bir Singh Khalsa, an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and an associate neuroscientist in the Division of Sleep Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

Researchers explain that yoga can help people deal with body aches and pains by making them stronger, showing them how to move in a less-painful way and improving their ability to cope with pain and relax.

In fact, there is evidence that yoga may also help improve the immune system and reduce obesity. Researchers at the Seattle-based Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center found that people who practice yoga are better able to manage their body weight and have a lower average body mass index than people who don’t practice yoga.

So, if you’re looking for a way to perhaps lose weight, gain strength or reduce pain in your joints you might want to consider trying yoga.

Have a healthy day,

Larry Berman

You Can Lower Your Heart Attack Risk By 22%

 

A new study released by the European Heart Journal indicates that eating more fruits and vegetables may reduce your risk of dying from heart disease.

 

The study was conducted in Europe and had a large sample of over 300,000 subjects.

 

According to the study results, people who ate at least eight portions of fruit and vegetables a day were 22 percent less likely to die of heart disease than those who ate fewer than three portions a day. A portion was considered to be 80 grams, which would equal a small banana, a medium apple or a small carrot.

 

The study also found that for each portion of fruits and vegetables eaten over 3 a day and up to eight portions, a risk reduction of 4 percent was received.  So, for example if you ate 6 portions a day your risk reduction would be 12%.  So even if you don’t eat the full 8 portions, each one you do eat lowers your risk.

 

With this new study adding to the already known benefits of eating fruits and vegetables, you may want to consider a diet that has 8 portions a day.

 

Have a healthy day,

 

Larry Berman

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