Types Of IBS Causes And Your Best Solutions

types of IBS

Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or IBS, has become the go-to, catch-all diagnosis for any digestive complaints that don’t have an obvious cause/solution. However, the types of IBS causes and solutions vary from patient to patient.

Common IBS Symptoms Include:

To put it simply, IBS refers to a dysfunctional digestive tract. So, if you or your child have been given this diagnosis, it is likely that you were told the same generalized advice;

“It is stress related and to resolve it you need to better manage your stress.”

Sadly, this is very common response and often doesn’t fully help the problem. Now, I agree that stress is absolutely a big factor in IBS, however it is not the ONLY factor. In fact there are 3 which we need to consider to accurately treat IBS.

3 Major Contributing Factors To IBS

  1. Stress
  2. Unbalanced Microbiomes
  3. Food Sensitivities

Stress Versus Rest And Digest

To understand IBS, we need to understand the basics of digestion which is;

digestion occurs when we are at a RESTED state

To be more specific, it occurs when we activate our parasympathetic nervous system (PNS) a.k.a. rest and digest. This is our recovery mode where we nourish and repair our systems.

The PNS sends cues to activate proper digestion such as:

  • Producing stomach acid
  • Releasing digestive enzymes
  • Activating intestinal movement

These are all essential to break down food properly. The PNS is in direct opposition to our sympathetic nervous system (SNS). Or in other words, fight or flight.

Our SNS is activated when we are under stress. Biologically, our stress response was designed to respond to physical threats (i.e. running from or fighting off predators). Therefore, our SNS directs all energy to our:

  • Heart
  • Lungs
  • Muscles

And slows down “non-essential” functions such as digestion and reproductive function, which of coarse makes sense. Think about it, if you are running from a bear, you don’t need to be digesting your last meal at the same time?

However, the issue is that our current stressors usually are not physical in nature. Therefore, this response is no longer well- adapted. For example, if you get stressed at your morning meeting, you will likely not able to digest your lunch properly.

Why?  Well, when we are chronically stressed and chronically activating our SNS, we lose proper cues to the digestive system. Therefore it is unable to function optimally. In other words, we aren’t able to break down our food properly and end up with:

  • Gas
  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea

Balanced Microbes

You cannot have a conversation about IBS without talking about the microbiome. The microbiome are the trillions of bacteria, viruses, and other micro-organisms that live in our body. Especially our digestive tract. They play crucial role in active digestion as well as being involved in mood regulation signalling.

When it comes to our microbiome, we are mostly concerned about maintaining proper balance. The ratio of different microbes in our gut directly influences our digestive functioning.

Therefore, too much or too little of specific microbes, will throw off proper functioning. So, if the digestive system is not functioning optimally, undigested foods will be consumed by our microbiome producing excessive amounts of gas (i.e. bloating).

Balancing the microbiome is key for effective treatment of most types of IBS symptoms. This might include anti-microbial treatments, probiotics, and specific diets.

To learn more, click here to check out my previous article, What’s The Big Deal About Probiotics?

Food Sensitivities

Our food choices are crucial when it comes to our health. This is especially true when it comes to digestion. When you are dealing with a dysfunctional digestive tract, there are certain foods that are more difficult to digest and thus cause further issues. People with IBS are also more sensitive to certain foods.

Now, food sensitivities are very different from food allergies. However, they are both immune reactions.

Food allergies cause big inflammation throughout the body such as hives, itching, and anaphylaxis. Where as food sensitivities cause small amounts of inflammation specifically in the digestive tract. This irritates our intestinal lining which can cause constipation, diarrhea, and discomfort.

The Most Common Food Sensitivities In Most Types Of IBS

  1. Gluten
  2. Dairy (especially milk, cream, and soft cheeses)
  3. Foods high in preservatives (i.e. prepackaged granola bars, crackers, yogurt)
  4. Foods high in FODMAPs or Fructose

Eliminating these foods on a trial basis while providing support to eliminate the inflammation and damaged caused, is a key step in treating IBS. Quite often you can significantly reduce the number of food sensitivities you have through this temporary elimination when it come to these types of IBS symptoms.

What I Eat in a Day for IBS + Bloating | Elimination Diets 101

Final Thoughts

IBS is both chronic and complex. There is no quick solution thus several different treatment approaches are available. However, with the proper guidance and support, it is possible to live without daily gas, bloating, and pain.

A functional treatment approach to IBS should always include:

  1. Lowering stress and activating the parasympathetic nervous system
  2. Restoring microbiome diversity
  3. Eliminating food sensitivities.

If you’re looking for start taking action today, download my free guide to Beat Bloating in 7 Steps. These are my foundational steps to start re-training your digestive tract and gain control over your IBS.

DIY Sunscreen That Is Natural, Safe And Effective!

DIY sunscreen

This article will help you to determine which natural sunscreens are both safe AND effective but also what you NEED to avoid. I even include a natural DIY sunscreen that even helps to repel insects!

With the summer upon us, many of us are eager to soak up lots of sunshine. The sun is great for boosting mood and immunity but in excessive amounts the UV rays can also cause skin damage and an increased risk for skin cancer. This is why most of us know to reach for a sunscreen before heading out into the sun.

Unfortunately, many of these products that protect us from the sun’s UV rays, also get absorbed into our bodies and disrupt our hormones. Hormone disruption can cause issues with:

  • Mood regulation
  • Sleep quality
  • Energy
  • Fertility

Things we definitely want to avoid just as much as the skin damage we risk from the sun. This has led to an increase in the production of “natural” sunscreens as a safer alternative. This is great, however you must be cautious of clever marketing and false claims.

toxic chemicals in sunscreen

Look For The Active Ingredients

The first step in picking safer sunscreen is knowing the ingredients to avoid. These are the main chemicals we find in sunscreen that we know cause hormone disruption:

1. Oxybenzone
2. Octinoxate/Octyl methoxycinnamate

We also need to cover the natural products that claim to have sun protecting factors (SPF) but don’t have enough research to back them up.

I would recommend avoiding these if they are the ONLY active ingredient:

  • Carrot seed oil
  • Red raspberry seed oil

They are not harmful so you don’t need to avoid them but they cannot be relied on as your sole sun protection.

6 Common Chemical Sunscreen Ingredients Can Get Into the Bloodstream

Safer & Effective Active Ingredients

The best alternative active ingredients are mineral sunscreens which do not get absorbed. These ingredients are:

1. Zinc Oxide
2. Titanium Dioxide

These both have proven broad spectrum UV protection and have not been shown to interfere with our hormones.

There are also some natural products that do have evidence to support their sun protecting factors (SPF). The following natural ingredients all have around 5 SPF:

  • Coconut oil
  • Almond oil
  • Lavender oil
  • Peppermint oil

These are all great additions to your sunscreen but should not be relied on solely as they do not provide enough protection.

how much spf do you need?

How Much SPF Do You Need?

SPF stands for sun protecting factor and it is a measure of how much it blocks UVB rays. The higher the number, the more protection it provides. However, the numbers are not equivalent to the amount of protection. For example, SPF 30 does not provide double the amount of protection as SPF 15.

SPF 15 blocks out 93% of UVB rays, while SPF 30 blocks out 97%. SPF 50 then blocks out 98%. This means there really isn’t a significant benefit to getting sunscreen above SPF 50.

SPF also has nothing to do with the length of time spent in the sun but rather with the intensity of the sun. If you are out in the sun when UV rays are higher (i.e. mid-day), you need to limit your sun exposure in addition to applying sunscreen, instead of simply trying to apply higher SPF sunscreen.

Click here to read everything you need to know before having Fun in the Sun.

make your own sunscreen

Try Making Your Own Sun Screen

If you love DIY best for your natural products, you can also make your own sunscreen at home. I’ve adapted this recipe from Wellness Mama and added essential oils to provide some protection against insects as well.

DIY Sunscreen Ingredients:

  • ½ cup of almond oil
  • ¼ cup of coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp. beeswax
  • 1-2 tbsp. shea butter
  • 2-4 tbsp. non-nano zinc oxide
  • 20 drops of lavender augustifolia essential oil and/or peppermint essential oil

Instructions For DIY Sunscreen:

  1. Fill a big saucepan half full with water and put on medium heat
  2. Mix all your ingredients except the essential oils and zinc in a large mason jar and place in pan
  3. Stir your ingredient every few minutes until completely melted (wash the stirring instrument immediately when your done or you will be scrapping beeswax off)
  4. Remove the jar from the pan and slowly stir in each tbsp. of zinc.
  5. Add in the essential oils and stir them thoroughly
  6. Allow to cool on the counter. You may need to add more or less beeswax to get the right consistency.

This formulation gives about 20-30 SPF. The problem with homemade formulations is that you cannot guarantee their composition. This formulation is also not waterproof and should be applied every 3-4 hours.

In addition to sunscreen, always use safe sun practices. Wear hats and try to avoid prolonged sun exposure, particularly between 12-4 pm. Cover the skin where you can to reduce exposure to sun rays.

If you are looking for more direction on sunscreen products that are safer for your skin, check out the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database.

Alimentary Canal Organs And Their Role In Digestion

Alimentary Canal Organs

So, I know what you might be thinking, why in the world do I need to know about alimentary canal organs and how my digestion works? Well, it is YOUR body! Shouldn’t you know what happens to the food you put in your mouth? Furthermore how it’s processed by your body?

The Digestive Process - University of Michigan Health System

Alimentary Canal Organs And The Digestive Process

The process of digestion starts in the mouth and buccal cavity. This is where large pieces of food are broken down mechanically by your teeth. Here, saliva is secreted by the salivary glands which are located on the lower jaw, between the tongue and teeth.

Saliva softens the food, making it easier for ingestion. It also helps break down starches to sugar. Once the swallowed food passes into the esophagus, the food is moved down the digestive tract by peristaltic muscular movements into the stomach.

Next, the food mixes mucus and stomach acids, secreted by the inner lining of the stomach. This step is responsible for killing bacteria in the food and breaking down proteins and carbs into simpler substances and usually takes an average of two hours.

The broken-down substance then continues through the digestive tract where it enters the small intestine.

function of small intestine

Function Of Small Intestine

Your small intestine are a highly coiled structure that stretches about 20 feet long and is divided in 3 parts:

As it receives food from the stomach, digestive enzymes, such as bile produced by the liver, breaks down fats. At the same time, pancreatic juices produced by the pancreas, break down proteins and carbohydrates.

The inner wall of the small intestine is covered by hair-like organisms (microvilli) that help food be absorbed which takes an average of 3 hours. Next, undigested food enters the large intestine.

Function Of Large Intestine

Spanning about 5 feet in length, the large intestine contains 3 parts:

Food generally spends around 19 hours in the large intestine—far longer than in the small intestines! There, the food mixes with mucus and bacteria that live in the large intestine to begin the formation of fecal matter.

function of the colon

Function Of The Colon

Another important step takes place in your colon as it absorbs most of the water and remaining vitamins and minerals. The 4 sections of your colon include:

  • Ascending
  • Transverse
  • Descending
  • Sigmoid

Furthermore, the bacteria present in your colon are responsible for producing some of the vitamin B’s and K which turn unabsorbed carbs into:

  • Methane gas
  • Carbon dioxide
  • Hydrogen

In addition, the large intestine flora is responsible to ferment soluble fibers. Producing approximately 20 to 30 grams per day of the short-chained fatty-acids (SCFA):

With a ratio of 3:1:1, 95% can be absorbed and the remaining 5% excreted. In fact, it is estimated that about 5% – 10% of total body energy comes from SCFA’s.

Lastly, the fecal matter reaches the rectum and triggers what is called, ‘the defecation reflex’. In other words, the urge to go the bathroom. It is here where the fecal matter exits by the anus and what we commonly refer to as a bowel movement.

So there we go, the complete role of alimentary canal organs and the digestive process, from top to bottom!

For more information be sure to click on the following links:

True Health – Why Most Of Us Get It Wrong

true health

I want to start this article with what could seem like a simple question, what is true health?

Most people living in western culture judge the state of their health based on how they feel and how they look.  It’s this mentality that is actually causing people to develop health problems and chronic pain.

Ask anyone that has survived a heart attack, “How did you feel 10 minutes before having your heart attack?”  Many will tell you that they felt fine, good or even terrific. Yet they were 10 minutes away from having a potentially fatal heart attack!

There’s a great chance this person looks like the ‘average Joe‘, like you or me.  They may have looked good and even felt good. However, they were NOT healthy!  This is why we need to change they way our minds work by asking this important question. What is true health?

Susan Lucci’s Heart Warning for Women: Listen to Your Bodies

Stop Looking And Start Listening!

How many people are walking around your town RIGHT NOW with diabetes or cancer but have no idea?  All because they still look and feel fine!  Conversely, just because you are experiencing symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t heal!

Remember we said, “symptoms can be a blessing”.  It’s actually your body doing a good thing (I know, bear with us!) letting you know there is a problem. Furthermore giving you the opportunity to fix it!

Your body giving you a symptom can be an example Of your body actually performing a proper function, so listen to your body!

how to listen to your body

Body Talk

Have you ever hurt your knee?  The pain can literally prevent you from:

  • Running
  • Jumping
  • Walking
  • Stairs
  • Crouching, or bending down

Sometimes even taking a few steps feels almost impossible.  However, what the pain is actually preventing you from doing is the things you shouldn’t be doing. Things that could actually make the actual problem worse.

Often, people will take a muscle relaxant, anti-inflammatory, or painkiller to help ease the symptom of the knee pain and allow you to get through your day with more ease.  However, what you are actually doing is fighting the body’s natural self-protection mechanism and overdoing it and making the problem worse.  Click here to learn more about why medications can be dangerous to your health.

definition of good health

The Definition Of Health

True health is not about how you feel or look.  The World Health Organization’s definition of health is when your body is in a state of “complete physical, mental and social well-being”. That’s true health.  Nowhere in their definition does it say being healthy is looking good or feeling fine!  It’s all about function and healing!

Your body is designed to function and heal optimally IF you give it the opportunity to by removing the cause or interference.  Put simply, this means removing or minimizing physical, chemical, emotional stress.

Click here to read more about the Effects Of Stress – Stress Can Be Good For You?!

final thoughts on good health

Final Thoughts

Make the important decision today to stop ignoring the symptoms (and signs!) and start looking for solutions.

It’s like getting a rust spot on your car.  Sure you can throw a little paint on it and make it look ok on the outside. But, eventually that rust will spread and deteriorate to the point where it’s no longer an easy fix.  Don’t treat your body with that same disregard.

Stop taking medication to mask the pain! Instead, start looking for solutions so you body can heal properly and even prevent problems from rising in the first place!

I’ll leave you with these words of wisdom:

“The doctor of the future will give no medication, but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, diet and in the cause and prevention of disease.”

― Thomas A. Edison

Click here if you want to learn more about how to find the best diet for you.

How To Build Strength And Lose Weight Without Looking Like A Body Builder!

How To Build Strength

Many people see weightlifting as a way to build huge muscles and achieve a body builder-looking physique.  While this is a motivation for some, weightlifting is something everyone can and should do for optimal fitness. So, here’s how to build strength and lose weight without looking like a body builder! Regardless of your age, fitness level, or health goals as everyone can benefit from lifting weights.

Strength training promotes healthy bone density, skeletal muscle mass, and a healthy body fat percentage.  In this way, weightlifting will help you lose weight, boost your metabolism and give you a lean, toned physique.

WHAT IS STRENGTH TRAINING?

Strength training involves using some form of resistance against your body to increase the size and strength of your skeletal muscles.

Forms of resistance can include:
  • Barbells
  • Dumbbells
  • Machines
  • Resistance bands
  • Your own body weight

Weightlifting increases lean muscle mass, and, of course, builds stronger muscles.

WHY IS STRENGTH TRAINING IMPORTANT FOR WEIGHT LOSS?

Because strength training increases lean muscle mass, it aids in weight loss.  How?  Lean muscle mass helps your body burn calories more efficiently.  It does this by increasing your Basal Metabolic Rate, or resting metabolism.

Two people could weigh the exact same amount, but the person with a higher muscle mass will burn fat and calories more efficiently.  In addition, the person with less body fat and more muscle will look leaner and more toned.

Click here to read, How To Lose Weight – 3 Beliefs That Make Us Fat.

Is Cardio Better than Strength Training for Fat Loss? How Exercise Impacts Weight Loss

THE AFTER BURN EFFECT OF WEIGHTLIFTING

In addition, weightlifting creates an after burn effect.  This means that it revs up your metabolism for up to several hours after your workout is complete.  After a workout, your body has to complete various tasks to recover, repair and build muscle.

One of the ways your body works to recover is via an increase in oxygen consumption.  This is called EPOC, or Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption.  The duration of EPOC, or the afterburn, depends on both the duration and the intensity of your workout.  It can range from a few hours up to a day or so.

HOW TO BUILD STRENGTH TO BOOST YOUR METABOLISM?

EPOC causes an increase in metabolism, which yields an additional calorie burn.  How many extra calories will you burn?  It depends.  The longer and more intense your workout, the longer the afterburn; therefore, the more calories you’ll burn.

However, you are not going to turn into a calorie-burning machine.  Studies show that even after intense workouts, EPOC yields only a slight increase in metabolism.  This means that most people will not burn an exorbitant amount of calories post-workout (think anywhere from 30-200 calories).

Furthermore, you shouldn’t view EPOC as a license to eat anything and everything you want.  Nutrition is the key to proper recovery, in addition to losing weight and building muscle.  Rather, for optimum results, stick to nutritious, whole foods that are rich in protein.  Things like lean meats, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts, and protein powder are all good choices.

Click here to read, How to Start Eating Healthy and Stick to It for more on nutrition.

strength training

HOW TO BUILD STRENGTH AND INCREASE WEIGHT LOSS

The more resistance you use, the harder your body will work.  This stimulates muscle growth, burns calories and boosts your metabolism.  Therefore, try lifting moderate to heavy weights.  You need to challenge your body to change your body!

If you’re a beginner, start out lifting light weights to acclimate yourself to the exercise. Then, gradually increase the load until you feel challenged.

Your body will adapt to the physical stress of lifting weights, and you will plateau if you always lift the same amount.  Therefore, it’s important to gradually increase the amount of weight you lift in order to continue to lose weight and increase your fitness.  Don’t worry about bulking up, either.  This would require frequently lifting heavy weights plus supplementation.

In addition to how much resistance you use, it’s also important to consider the types of strength training exercises you perform.  Full body or compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups will burn the most calories.  These exercises can include;

  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Push-ups
  • Deadlifts
  • Cleans
  • Sled pushes

These can also include a combination of two exercises such as;

  • Bicep curl to overhead press
  • Push-up to renegade row

These types of exercises will engage the big muscle groups and increase your heart rate.  Therefore, you will burn a greater amount of calories and boost your metabolism.

HOW MUCH STRENGTH TRAINING IS NECESSARY?

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends 150-300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise per week.  Or, 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise, or a combination of the two.  Preferably, this would be distributed across the week, for least 4 days of exercise.  These guidelines also recommend at least 2 strength training sessions per week, using the major muscle groups.

Strength training sessions don’t have to take a long time in order to get the benefits.  You can spend as little as 20 minutes lifting weights, or up to an hour or so.  In general, the more intense the workout, the shorter it can be.  Incorporating full body exercises like squats, lunges, and push-ups will engage the big muscle groups and therefore burn calories, even in a short amount of time.

lifting weights to lose weight

WHAT ABOUT CARDIO?

Don’t forget about cardio!  While strength training is essential to achieving lean body mass, cardio is also essential.  Cardio burns more overall calories than strength training, which is necessary for weight loss.  However, cardio does not increase lean body mass like strength training does.  Therefore, a combination of strength training and cardio will give you optimal weight loss results.

WHAT’S THE PERFECT COMBINATION?

It varies from person to person.  But in general, one cardio session for every strength training session will get the job done.  Refer back to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans for general exercise recommendations.  For more personalized exercise plans, speak with a healthcare or fitness professional to determine your specific needs.

Including strength and cardio, there are 4 Types of Exercise that will transform your body and improve your fitness.

exercises to lose weight

TIME TO GET STARTED

Weightlifting is a critical component for losing weight and transforming your body.  Regular strength training will yield a lean, toned physique, as well as improve overall confidence.  If you’ve considered beginning a strength training regimen in the past but haven’t yet taken the first steps, now is the time!  Get with a personal trainer or healthcare professional to come up with a plan that suits your needs and goals and properly show you how to build strength safely.

For more weight loss tips, check out my post on 9 Surprising Reasons Why You’re Not Losing Weight.

Fun In The Sun

Looking to have some fun in the sun but worried about all the risks? Well I have some good news. Sunshine is not the cancer-causing enemy that we once thought it was. In fact, we actually need sunshine almost like we need food.

Proper Exposure to Sunlight Can:

But what does ‘proper exposure to sunlight’ actually mean? Well, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are some simple steps to ensure you are safeguarded from the suns adverse effects.

sun safety

Fun In The Sun

First, please note that sunscreen/sunblock is NOT a way to justify prolonged exposure to the sun. Rather, it helps to decrease damage caused by UVA and UVB rays which can be attributed to:

How to Choose the Best Sunscreen

Sun Safety Tips

  1. Minimize Mid-Day Sun Exposure – According to WHO UV rays are the strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Therefore it’s best to limit or avoid the sun during this time.
  2. Cover Up – Always try and included wearing items such as sunglasses, wide brimmed hats and UV protective clothing. This will help protect yourself against harmful UV damage.
  3. ALWAYS Wear Sunscreen/Sunblock – Many of us now know the importance of wearing sunscreen on hot sunny days but did you know it’s just as important to wear it on those cloudy days too? That’s right! Clouds work to filter out the sunlight but only block approximately 20% of the UV rays.  That means you can still be exposed to a whooping 80% of  UV rays. Click here read the best sunscreen product review.
  4. Check The UV Index – The higher the number, the stronger the sun’s UV rays are.  The UV Index can range from 0 – 12+. This is something I monitor carefully as my fair skin burns in approximately 3.5 minutes (I’m not kidding).
  5. Spend Time In The Shade – Now I know this seems like a no brainer however you still need to be careful even in the shade. Not all shade is created equal.  For example a sun umbrellas may block the sun but still allow UV rays to penetrate through. So you should always be cautious and wear sunscreen.  Also, you need to understand that your surroundings play a large role even in the shade. This is because the strength of UV rays can vary based on what kind of surface they bounce off of.

Examples Of UV Reflection Strength In The Shade:

Final Thoughts

Enjoy the sun! But consciously and in small amounts. Be sure to share and incorporate these sun safety tips with your family before enjoying the beautiful outdoors.

The Foot Pain Identifier

foot pain

Fact Checking Review Process

The Family Health Advocacy team is committed to delivering content that adheres to the highest standards for content accuracy and reference. Articles with the “Fact Checked” stamp will adhere these standards and will be reviewed using guidelines from the American Medical Writers Association (AMWA) and all the reviews conducted are subject to the AMWA code of conduct https://www.amwa.org/page/Code_of_Ethics in line with the medical industry’s best practices in health communication.

Our medical review team will ensure the following criteria is met:

1. Is it original writing? Does the article contain significant portions of plagiarized materials?

2. Are the main concepts well and clearly defined?

3. Are the articles central tenets backed by adequate evidence?

4. Are there any gaps or inconsistencies?

5. Is the writing clear and easy to understand?

6. Does it advance knowledge?

This foot pain identifier information is important.  People rarely acknowledge how important their feet are to their everyday life. Well, that is until they experience foot pain themselves!  Just think about it, you use your feet to:

  • Stand
  • Pivot
  • Jump
  • Turn
  • Step
  • Dance
  • Walk
  • Run

Even just to keep your balance.  But when you experience foot pain, these seemingly simple functions can become quite challenging.

Plantar fasciitis is the most common type of foot pain.  The plantar fascia is a layer of connective tissue on the bottom or sole of the foot. It provides support to the foot’s arch and plays a major role in the function and mechanics of walking or running.

Foot Pain Identifier – Feel The Burn!

Foot pain can have quite a few causes.  However, the most common (as detailed at medicinenet.com) for foot pain are:

Plantar fasciitis is also the most common cases we see at the clinic. When plantar fascia is relaxed, the toes are pointed down and the foot is in the “plantar flexed” position.

Conversely, the plantar fascia is tight and undergoes tension when the toes and foot are pointed upwards, “dorsi flexed.”  When this tension persists, the plantar fascia can become irritated and develop “burning-like” symptoms at the bottom of the foot.

The most specific problem area tends to be close to the heel.  The heel bone or calcaneus provides the foundation at the rear of the foot. This is also the origin point of the plantar fascia.

heal pain

Pain In The Heel

A cardinal symptom of plantar fasciitis is a sharp pain in the heel which is usually experienced when you take your first steps in the morning.  Remember, your foot is typically in a restful state (plantar flexion) throughout the night while you sleep.  Therefore, when you arise, there is a sudden jolt of tension shot into the plantar fascia as it is quickly stretched.  As such, it can make for a very painful start to the day.

In this case, specific stretches can be performed each morning before getting out of bed to help alleviate these symptoms.

Click here to read What You Should NOT Do if You Suffer From Numbness and Tingling.

foot pain identifier

Factors Of Plantar Fasciitis

The name of the diagnosis is kind of a misnomer as any diagnosis that ends with the word “itis” usually indicates the condition involves significant inflammation.  However, in actuality, there is research to both support and negate the relationship that inflammation actually has with this condition.

Poor foot position or posture is really the most common factor of this condition.  In most cases it is due to being flat footed or over pronation of their foot when walking.  Flat footed people are overusing their muscle at the bottom of the plantar fascia. Usually until it becomes irritated, causing plantar fasciitis.  Keep in mind, this is something that can happen at any age and is very common.

Plantar fasciitis doesn’t tend to discriminate and is usually associated with poor postural habits and lifestyle.  This condition is also common with increased activity and repetitive strain.  Transitioning to new footwear can also trigger plantar fasciitis resulting in the soft tissue breaking down.  Also, accumulative effects of gravity over time, along with weight gain can also precipitate plantar fasciitis.

Conservative care might include:

  • Frequent icing
  • Wearing a supportive slipper around the house
  • Night brace
  • Taping
foot scan

Prevention For Foot Pain

Prevention is best achieved through properly functioning feet.  So, supportive footwear is critical. Therefore, I strongly recommend getting a foot scan and examination by an appropriate healthcare provider to determine if custom orthotics are necessary.

Click here to read, How To Choose The Best Running Shoes – Part 1.

Because this condition has become such a buzzword, many people are misdiagnosed by their healthcare providers as other conditions, which cause similar symptoms need to be excluded. These include:

  • A stress fracture
  • Bursitis
  • Neuritis
  • Contusion of the calcaneus
  • Nerve entrapment

The most important thing here is to find the right healthcare practitioner who will conduct a thorough consultation and examination in order to achieve an accurate diagnosis.

Here’s to you putting your best foot forward.

You’re one step closer!

For additional information and at home stretches click here to read CORRECTIVE EXERCISES FOR RELIEVING FOOT PAIN.

References:
  1. Plantar Fasciitis – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1788446/
  2. Plantar Warts – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3951039/
  3. Ingrown Toenails – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/22565427/

Are Chiropractors Safe?

is chiropractic safe

Are Chiropractors safe? Furthermore, what do they do??

Chiropractors perform spinal manipulation or chiropractic adjustments by applying a gentle and specific impulse with their hands to the spine and other joints in the body. The adjustment corrects and aligns the spine removing stress from spinal nerves. By correcting spinal alignment and removing nerve interference the body is better able to function and heal properly.

Chiropractic adjustments are effective in restoring mobility and relieving pain. Especially to injuries caused by traumatic events such as slips and falls or due to repetitive strain.  

Chiropractic Adjustment Benefits Your:
  • Bones
  • Muscles
  • Joints
  • Ligaments
  • Tendons
  • Cartilage

Click here to read, Are Chiropractors Doctors?

benefits of chiropractic

Chiropractic Benefits

  1. A Great Way To Relieve PainChiropractic care is one of the best ways of getting rid of aches and pains. It’s effective and helps people avoid taking pain medication. Also, it’s great for relieving neck pain, back pain and headaches.
  2. Corrects The Underlying ProblemPain medications don’t address the source of the problem but the symptoms. Furthermore they can become addicting and cause an opiod addiction. However, Chiropractic focuses on the nervous system, which controls the body’s function from breathing to digestion. The spine protects the spinal cord and nerves. Therefore, spinal health is essential to the overall wellness. Click here to read, A Natural Proven Solution To The Opioid Crisis.
  3. Helps Avoid Medication – Medication can be useful in addressing various health problems but typically they just mask the symptoms. Unlike chiropractic care which can relieve aches and pains by getting to the root cause of the problem. Giving you relief without any drugs or pesky side effects.
  4. Personalized TreatmentNo formula must be followed for chiropractic care. A qualified chiropractor will assess your situation and come up with a care plan to correct the problem. Chiropractors may use different instruments and techniques that best suits that patient’s specific needs.
  5. Complements Other Treatment ProceduresThe great thing about chiropractic care is that it can be used alongside other forms of treatment. Chiropractic patients may also be receiving massage therapy or acupuncture. All of which complement each other.

Click here to read, What The Neck? Are You Short-Circuiting?

Is Chiropractic Safe?

Are Chiropractors Safe?

Chiropractic care is an extremely safe. It’s conservative, yet effective option for correcting spinal problems. Maintaining a healthy spine is crucial to having a healthy nervous system. But must be handled with care. Chiropractic is non-invasive and drug-free, making it a safe option.

Most patients feel instant relief after receiving chiropractic adjustments. Some patients may feel mild side effects such as soreness and aching. The good thing is that it typically doesn’t last and will go away in a few hours.

Always share any concerns you may have with your chiropractor.  Chiropractors are well-trained professionals who understand how to take care of their patients.
To find a chiropractor in your area please click here for our online directory.

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Stressed And Depressed? 4 Types Of Stress And How To Avoid Them

Stressed And Depressed

Are you feeling stressed and depressed? In today’s world, the word “stress” gets thrown around a lot, and with good reason. Stress has been scientifically proven to be at the root cause of chronic diseases we suffer with today.

Did you know, 9/10 people in westernized nations die from chronic disease, which CAN BE PREVENTED?

Sadly most people only think, or know about one type of stress – mental stress. However, there are 4 main subcategories.

Types Of Stress

The Breakdown Of Stress

types of stress

Causes Of Chemical Stress

Causes Of Physical Stress

Causes Of Mental Stress

  • An internal perception of your environment that surrounds you
  • Either work or home life, can be mentally or emotionally stressful

These stressors act on our body, and our body reacts/responds to them all the same – it puts us into fight or flight mode, otherwise known as the stress response. For short term stressors, this is intelligent adaptation. This allows us to survive these stressors. However, we are not under short term stress but rather chronic stress.

When stress goes above and beyond what we can handle, our body responds via the nervous system. The nervous system detects the stress, and puts itself into protection.  The only thing that can physically protect the central nervous system is the spine.

Causes Of Spine And Nervous System Stress

The spine splints for protection, resulting in either a spine that loses its normal motion and/or position.  Intelligent adaptation.  But if that does not self correct, this is where the problems happen.

stress

Feeling Stressed and Depressed ? What Can You Do About It?

QUALITY NUTRITION is your best tool to beat the chemical stress. Eat less processed foods, focus on whole foods, and foods found in nature (fruit and vegetables!). Use natural skin care products with as few chemicals as possible.

OPTIMAL FITNESS can combat sedentary living. Consistency, and variety is the ticket here.

Take your pick. Even just walking 30 minutes a day, 5x a week, has been shown to drastically reduce risk of chronic disease.

How Stress Affects Your Health

PERSONAL POWER – it’s all in your head! Your outlook can be positive or negative – the choice is yours.

These have all been shown to help decrease mental stress.

It’s hard, if not impossible, to self correct spinal misalignment. This is where a visit to your local chiropractor may pay huge dividends. Chiropractic helps to clear nervous system stress and get a BALANCED SPINE.  In addition, chiropractic care has been shown to;

Honestly, who can’t benefit from all those things?

Here’s to a healthier, happier, longer life!

Are Chiropractors Doctors?

Are Chiropractors Doctors

Many people often ask the question “are chiropractors doctors?”. Well, they are healthcare practitioners in a regulated profession, and so, the common assumption is that they are doctors. However many people wonder what the difference is between chiropractors and medical doctors.

Let’s look at what chiropractor’s do and what the practice of chiropractic includes. Therefore, you can be better prepared and more confident about your next visit to see a chiropractor!

What Is Chiropractic?

Chiropractic is a licensed healthcare profession that focuses on the body’s natural ability to heal. Chiropractic care most commonly centers on manual therapy. More specifically the chiropractic adjustment, with an emphasis on the health of the spine and nervous system. Physical exercises and lifestyle advice are also frequently included as part of a patients care.

What Is A Doctor Of Chiropractic?

A chiropractor is a health professional that provides care for disorders related to;

But, they aren’t medical doctors. Therefore do not prescribe medication. However, they undergo extensive training and are highly qualified in their field, practicing as doctors of chiropractic.

Click here to read, If I go to the Chiropractor, do I have to go forever?

doctor of chiropractic

Education For Doctors Of Chiropractic

Chiropractic education is very similar to that of medicine. However, compared to their medical counterparts, chiropractors spend more hours studying;

  • Anatomy
  • Neurology
  • Orthopedics
  • Radiology
  • Nutrition

A chiropractor usually attains their undergraduate degree with a strong emphasis on sciences such as;

  • Biology
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Chemistry

All before attending a 4-year chiropractic graduate course. All this totaling close to 4,700 instructional hours.

what is chiropractic

What Does A Doctor Of Chiropractic Do?

Similar to medical doctors, chiropractors will firstly have a consultation with their patient. Next, they will perform a patient history and examination. This often includes specialized tests, before providing a report of findings.

After providing a diagnosis, they will recommend a management plan. Once a patient begins care, their progress will be closely monitored to maintain optimal health. Chiropractors most commonly provide care for health conditions that involve the neuromusculoskeletal system.

Standard chiropractic care includes joint manipulation. Also referred to as chiropractic adjustments performed by the hand through a combination of quick and gentle thrusts. The main objective of the chiropractic adjustment is to improve the alignment and functions of spinal joints. Reducing stress on the nervous system. Many chiropractors will provide joint manipulation to the extremities as well.

Click here to read, Cracking Open The Biggest Myths About Chiropractic.

what is chiropractic

How Chiropractic Can Help

Chiropractor’s care can help solve several health problems. It can help resolve issues and conditions relating to:

  • The nervous system
  • Bones, ligaments, and cartilage
  • Tendons and muscles

Frequent problems that can resolve under chiropractic care are;

Click here to read, Chiropractic Heals Nothing!

So, Are Chiropractors Doctors?

On the whole, chiropractors are holistic healthcare practitioners. Providing care to help their patients achieve optimal overall health. They are highly skilled and will offer excellent solutions to a number of healthcare issues. Click here to find a chiropractor near you.

For further reading click here to read, Antioxidants – Can They Be Boosted With Chiropractic Care and What The Keto Diet And Chiropractic Have In Common .