Nutrition for Menopause: A Drug-Free Approach for All Phases

Of all the changes women experience during their reproductive life, there is no doubt the most dreaded are the three phases of menopause. This is not surprising since all of the symptoms associated with menopause are replete with unpleasantness.

Hot flashes, night sweats, sleep disturbance, mood swings, bone density issues, hormonal imbalance and low libido are not only distressing, but also can impact a woman’s health and quality of life in multiple negative ways.

The gradual depletion of estrogen production associated with aging is the catalyst for most menopausal symptoms. Lack of estrogen may affect other organs of the body including the brain, contributing to negative emotional well-being; as well as the skin, reducing thickness and elasticity. There is also evidence that declining estrogen levels may make women more vulnerable to heart disease and stroke.

With such a comprehensive list of negative effects brought on by menopause, it is understandable that the most logical remedy for symptoms associated with menopause became the administration of synthetic hormones, or hormone replacement therapy.

HRT came into use nearly six decades ago and was generally prescribed to women as they began to experience menopausal symptoms. However, as multiple studies over the decades associated traditional HRT with various cancers and other negative side effects, the use of artificial hormones to treat menopausal women has declined significantly.

Natural Options to Consider

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Although artificial hormone therapies for menopausal women continue to be debated and refined, alternative therapies with no link to negative side effects merit serious consideration.

Examining the nutritional deficiencies that may accompany the demands that menopause places on the female body indicates that addressing nutritional needs at the cellular level is vital to effectively treating all phases of menopause.

The process of aging diminishes the body’s ability to activate vitamin D. This lowers calcium absorption rates, which increases the risk of osteoporosis in the postmenopausal woman.

Calcium may lose its effectiveness if vitamin D is deficient or estrogen levels are low. Magnesium deficiency can contribute to insomnia and other menopausal symptoms.

Estrogen enhances magnesium utilization and absorption; declining levels of estrogen associated with the stages of menopause can create magnesium and other mineral deficiencies.

B vitamins play a key role in reducing menopausal stress. Thiamine, niacin, B12 and folic acid are often referred to as the “stress vitamins.” Although the ovaries stop producing estrogen in time, adrenal glands and fat cells will continue to produce the hormone. B3 and folic acid help support this production.

Mildred Seeling, MD, describes this in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition:1-2

“Estrogen enhances magnesium utilization and uptake by soft tissues and bone, and may explain the resistance of young women to heart disease and osteoporosis, as well as the increased prevalence of these diseases when estrogen production ceases.”

Superfoods and Cellular Nutrition for Women’s Health

Dark-green leafy vegetables such as kale, collard greens and broccoli are low-calorie sources of phytoestrogens. They are also rich in important nutrients such as iron, calcium, folate and B vitamins which support healthy management of menopausal symptoms.

Beans and other botanicals are rich in phytoestrogens. Daidzein, an isoflavone found chiefly in legumes such as soy beans and other plant-based sources, such as red clover, helps reduce menopausal hot flashes.3

Panothenic acid, or vitamin B5, is found in salmon, sunflower seeds and avocados. It can reduce hot flashes and help mood stabilization.

Royal jelly is a true superfood loaded with minerals, vitamins, protein and pheromones. Plant hormones stimulate weak estrogenic actions and stimulate adrenals to help alleviate stress, reduce hot flashes and fight fatigue associated with menopause.

Bee pollen extract also helps with these symptoms and may help with weight management as well.4

Plant-based supplements such as guggul gum, Cnidium monnieri and Moringa leaf 5 contain vitamin D and calcium for bone health; they help regulate mood swings, reduce hot flashes and night sweats, and increase libido.

Talk to Your Doctor

In my practice, I have experienced a substantial rise in menopausal patients seeking alternatives to traditional hormone replacement therapy. This trend has been experienced by my colleagues as well. Women have concerns about HRT, but want relief from the debilitating symptoms of menopause.

While traditional hormone therapy has helped many women, we have generally ignored correcting nutritional deficiencies and using functional medicine, an approach women prefer and has been quite successful in my own practice. Using quality, organic sources, the symptoms associated with menopause can be successfully treated with virtually no negative ramifications.

Addressing nutritional support for women during menopause, perimenopause and postmenopause with scientifically validated phytonutrients can and does provide a front-line treatment for symptoms associated with all stages of menopause.

In addition to reducing the risks associated with traditional hormone therapy, this approach to wellness empowers women to take more control of their own unique health needs holistically and in a much more natural way than previously accepted protocols. Talk to your doctor to learn more.

By Seth Herbst, MD, FACOG

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How to Beat Breast Cancer: Muscle Up

An estimated one in eight women will suffer breast cancer, but that doesn’t mean one in eight women will die from the disease. What can you do to increase your odds of survival if you’ve received a breast cancer diagnosis? Muscle mass may make a difference, suggests research.

A study published in JAMA Oncology found that breast cancer patients with sarcopenia (progressive loss of muscle due to aging, which typically occurs naturally in men and women after the age of 30 or so) at the time of their cancer diagnosis were 41 percent less likely to survive the 13-year study period compared to women with breast cancer who did not have sarcopenia. Increased body fat was also a predictor of cancer mortality, and breast cancer patients with sarcopenia and high body fat were 89 percent more likely to succumb during the study period. All women tracked in the study had non-metastatic (not spreading from its site of origin to another part of the body) stage II or stage IIIbreast cancer.

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Increasing lean muscle mass is important for men and women as they age, but as these findings emphasize, it’s critical for women since breast cancer rates are so high, and particularly critical for women over the age of 30 with declining muscle mass due to aging. Talk to your doctor about an exercise program that promotes lean muscle mass while reducing body fat. It may save your life.

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Another Reason Not to Eat Out

As we’ve discussed before, phthalates are synthetic chemicals known as endocrine disrupters (never good when something we’re exposed to is called a “disrupter”) found in literally hundreds of consumer products ranging from personal-care products such as perfumes and shampoos to countless food processing and packaging materials.

The problem with their pervasive use is that they may not be safe; in fact, phthalates may be downright dangerous.

That brings us to our eating habits, particularly our tendency to eat out. Research published in Environmental International suggests people who eat out at fast-food establishments, restaurants or cafeterias are exposed to 35 percent more phthalates than people whose primary source of sustenance is grocery-store food. The researchers suggest the increased exposure may be attributable to the fact that many restaurant / fast-food fare is not made on the premises, meaning it’s transported (likely in some form of plastic wrap / container) from a production facility.

Now, let’s be clear: Grocery-store food can also contain phthalates, depending on the type of food, so this is really a conversation about avoiding phthalates wherever and whenever you eat by avoiding processed, pre-prepared meals (at the grocery store, think frozen dinners for starters, although that’s the tip of the iceberg) generally produced or packaged in plastic. In fact, when you think about it, how many foods in your fridge, freezer and pantry right now may contain or have been exposed to phthalates? Not a pretty picture.

It’s difficult to completely eliminate your phthalate exposure due to their prevalence in our environment these days, but you can start by eating as many unprocessed, unpackaged foods as possible. We’re talking natural, nutritious foods grown in the soil, not produced in a manufacturing plant. By the way, that’s also a great way to promote overall health by getting the balanced nutrition your body needs. Talk to your doctor for more information.

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Five Common Fitness Mistakes That Can Slow Your Progress

By Emily Duval Ledger

Even when they have the best intentions, exercisers often make mistakes that keep them from getting the most out of their workouts, and in some cases, do them harm. Here are a few of the most common mistakes, and how you can avoid them yourself.

  1. Walking with hand weights. Carrying dumbbells while you walk may seem like a smart way to add strength training to your cardio workout, but it compromises your posture and can lead to injury. Best to keep your cardio and strength training separate, so each can get your full attention.
  2. Focusing only on cardio. Though cardio workouts are great for you, we start losing muscle as early as 30, which can significantly slow your metabolism and leave you vulnerable to injury. Even a few days of strength training per week can increase bone density, and help you burn more calories, even while at rest!
  3. Skipping the stretch. Stretching at the end of your workout (when your body is nice and warm) can significantly decrease aches and pains, reduce delayed onset muscle soreness, and prevent overuse injuries. Plus, stretching is your body’s reward for all that hard work!
  4. Seeking a quick fix. We all want to see results fast, but don’t let crash diets and overly-intense exercise programs lure you into false expectations: the best (and lasting) results come from making changes you can see yourself doing for life. Embracing an extreme program for a few weeks to lose weight fast only sets you up to gain the weight back (and then some later), and wreaks havoc on your thyroid. Instead, figure it will take at least as long to lose the weight as it took you to gain it.
  5. Letting social media be your trainer. It’s one thing to collect inspirational quotes and healthy recipes on your social media pages, but don’t mistake fitness memes for sound advice. 30-Day Push-up (or Squat) Challenges tend to overuse the same muscles day after day, and can lead to injuries and poor posture. Better to find a qualified trainer to help create a program that works best for you.
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Move More! Avoiding the Health Dangers of Inactivity

In addition to the well-documented and alarming increase in obesity, recent studies have also documented the startling lack of physical activity in our society. Researchers have found that physical activity declines dramatically across age groups between childhood and adolescence and continues to decline with age. Among children, 42 percent obtain the recommended 60 minutes per day of physical activity, but only 8 percent of adolescents achieve this goal. Among adults, adherence to the recommendation to obtain 30 minutes day of physical activity is less than 5 percent!

This reduced physical activity results in numerous changes commonly referred to as the deconditioning syndrome. In an excellent 2011 review paper on the dangers of inactivity, the authors describe deconditioning as the physiologic response of the body when there is a reduction in energy use or exercise levels; that is, with bed rest, prolonged sitting or in living a very sedentary lifestyle. Major changes included in this syndrome are:

  • Decreased joint mobilization
  • Wasting of trunk muscles
  • Decreased muscular strength and endurance
  • Reduced cardiovascular fitness
  • Stiffness of ligaments and joints
  • Reduced metabolic activity
  • Increased susceptibility to sprains, strains and muscle spasms
exercise - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

These damaging effects of muscle and joint disuse provoke symptoms, causing greater avoidance of activity, resulting in a cyclical pattern of pain and avoidance of activity / deconditioning / more pain, and is considered a defining characteristic of chronic low back pain patients.

Studies published from several different countries show that the majority of adult waking hours (>90 percent) are spent either in sedentary or in light-intensity activity. A number of studies, using both subjective and objective measures of physical activity, suggest that prolonged bouts of sitting time are strongly associated with chronic disease including: obesity, abnormal glucose metabolism, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease risk and cancer, independent of whether adults meet physical activity guidelines.

So, what’s the bottom line? Move more! And keep in mind that your chiropractor is your partner in the battle against obesity and related health conditions. If you or someone you know is struggling with their weight and/or living a sedentary lifestyle, ask for help. Your chiropractor can help develop a strategy to improve your/their health via exercise, diet and other methods.

By Malik Slosberg, DC, MS

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Perfect Your Posture, Improve Your Health

Ever try balancing a book on your head (for more than a second)? To do it, you need more than just patience; you need ideal posture.

One hundred and thirty thousand years ago, when residents of the planet possessed complete Neanderthalic characteristics, posture wasn’t really that high on the list of health priorities, to say the least. At the time, we assume finding food, surviving the seasons and avoiding death by all manner of creatures were considerably more important. But this is 2011 and we can stand upright, walk upright and consider our health a precious asset. And yet, like the Neanderthals, our apparent disinterest in good posture remains.

Why is good posture so important? It’s pretty simple. When the spine is properly aligned with its natural curvature and the entire body – from the ears to the shoulders to the hips, knees and down to the ankles and feet – is in balance, we maximize spine health and avoid poor posture-related pain and dysfunction. Ideal posture creates ideal balance; it also optimizes breathing and circulation. And shouldn’t we all want to achieve that?

May is National Correct Posture Month, so we thought it was high time to get you out of your slumped, bent-back, round-shoulders position that is likely all too common if you work at a computer, spend considerable time texting or checking e-mail on your cell phone (who doesn’t these days?), or engage in any of the countless activities that put your back, neck and spine at risk courtesy of poor posture. It’s time to stand tall, walk tall and improve your spinal health, all at the same time!

For tips on the best ways to perfect your posture, look no further than Straighten Up America, a health promotion initiative developed in 2005 with an admirable vision: to educate the public about the importance of good posture and spinal health, to the point that “every American will take two or three minutes every day to care for their spinal health, just as they care for their dental health.” Straighten Up, which partners in promoting the nation’s health with the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, is designed to get children and adults up and moving while they improve their posture and spinal health. The Straighten Up program also includes healthy lifestyle recommendations congruent with the goals and objectives of Healthy People 2010, America on the Move, Steps to a Healthier US and the 5 A Day programs.

One of the earliest tests of this program proved quite encouraging: After five weeks of daily practice of “Straighten Up” exercises, more than 80 percent of participants reported improved posture; just under 80 percent said they had strengthened their core muscles; and 80 percent reported that after performing the exercises, they now sat and stood more upright, and their backs felt more comfortable in that position.

The butterfly - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Are you and your family ready to perfect your posture? Here are a few Straighten Up exercises; to download the complete list and for more information, visit

tilting star - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

The Butterfly: Standing and with head held high, belly button in, place your arms behind your head and gently pull your elbows backward. Slowly and gently press your head against your hands while counting to two. Relax, breathe, and repeat three times.

Tilting Star: With head high and belly button in, spread your arms and legs into a star. Breathe in and slowly stretch one arm over your head and slide your opposite arm down your leg. Slowly tilt your star to the opposite side. Relax. Repeat two times.

twirling star - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark
the hummingbird - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Twirling Star: In the star position (hands and legs forming a star; see Tilting Star description), turn your head to look at one hand. Slowly twist your entire spine to watch your hand as it goes behind you. Relax and repeat (each side) two times. Keep your head high, belly button in.

The Hummingbird: With head high and belly button in, put your arms out to the sides with your hands up and pull your shoulders together in the back. Now make small, backward circles with your hands and arms. Bend at your waist from side to side, keeping the circles going as you count to 10.

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Top 5 Healthy Habits (We Tend to Ignore)

For the sake of this discussion, let’s assume you’re exercising regularly and eating a balanced, nutritious diet – the two most common habits people think of when they hear the phrase “healthy habits.” In fact, we’re also not going to delve into the topics of sleep and stress, both of which can dramatically impact health and overall life satisfaction. No, today’s lesson is on the top five healthy habits you probably haven’t adopted yet – and failure to do so is damaging your health and wellness in ways you can’t imagine.

1. Make More Calls (Without Your Phone): There’s a reason we’re starting with this one: With an estimated 270 million mobile-phone users in the U.S. alone as of 2018 (the U.S. population is 325 million, 20 million of whom are under the age of 5 and – we hope – not in possession of their own mobile phone), we are indeed a phone culture, and not primarily for audible talking. Texting, chatting and posting (often in anonymous, disparaging fashion) have become our primary methods of communication. Research suggests mobile-phone use not only has physical consequences (“text claw,” “cell phone elbow,” forward head posture, etc.), but also psychological ones, including anxiety related to receiving (or not receiving) messages, reduced face-to-face communication skills, and even a condition coined “nomophobia” (fear of being without your phone).

So write a letter (yes, on paper) or card to a loved one; set up a regular get-together spot with your best friend (yes, you can use your phone to coordinate it) … and make conscious, deliberate, empowering decisions to leave your phone at home more often (yes, you can do it). It’s one of the healthiest habits you’ll ever adopt.

new you - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

2. Don’t Misplace Your Keys: No, we’re not talking about the literal keys to your car or house, although misplacing them can cause considerable angst; we’re referring to the keys that open doorways to continually learn, grow and build the life you want. Too many people consider themselves “locked in” to their existing state in life: their job, their home, their routines … even their own body or mind. But dreams don’t have to die, especially when your despair at not fulfilling (or in some cases, even pursuing) them can be equally as life-threatening.

Go back to school. Learn a new skill. Pursue a hobby. Change the way you do anything if there’s a better, more fulfilling way. Think about whether the path you’re on in any aspect of your life is the right one. Life is a journey with many roads, all deserving exploration. Don’t be afraid to try a different route, no matter your age – especially if the road you’re currently on is taking you in the wrong direction.

3. Complete “The List”: We all have lists, whether on paper or in our heads; lists of things we want to do, need to do or both. But how many of us actually complete our lists? Do you find your “to-do’s” traveling from one list to the next, day after day, week after week, or even longer? That’s a problem. Procrastination leads to pressure and guilt, neither of which benefits your health. And when it comes to longer-term goals or “resolutions,” if you will, there’s a reason you wrote “clean out the garage,” “start reading every night” or “take a vacation this year” on a list. If every day is another “why haven’t I done it yet” conversation in your head (or with your significant other), you’ll quickly find yourself in an entirely unhealthy place.

4. Do a Little Prep Work: It’s 9 p.m. and your day has felt like just about every day lately: rushed, overflowing with responsibilities, and with absolutely no opportunity for even a few precious moments of “you time.” Common sense tells you relaxation time has finally arrived … but wait: If you take just a few minutes to prepare for the next manic morning, you’ll lighten your proverbial load and start the day in a better place. Whether that means getting school lunches ready, pre-scrambling eggs for breakfast, picking out tomorrow’s outfit, or getting something else done instead of waiting until morning, you can save considerable time (and stress) by doing a little prep work. And no, this advice doesn’t just apply to busy parents; everyone can benefit from more preparation. Figure out what you could do sooner, rather than later, in your life and then get it done!

5. Believe in the Power of No: This one works in both directions and covers habits 1-4 above. As soon as you learn to say no, your life takes on an entirely new meaning. Can’t leave work on time because you just “have to get everything done”? Guess what: You’ll probably never get it all done (which is what the next workday is for), but if you continually overdo it, you’ll find yourself burned out before you know it. Learn to say no to the constant threats to your moments of “you time.” (Yes, do a little prep work, as discussed above, but not if it means you never get to relax.)

On the other hand, also learn to say no to the tendency to avoid doing the things you know would improve your life (such as these habits). Don’t let fear, comfort (or discomfort) or anything else keep you from achieving what you want and know you can achieve. Learning to find balance in your life– now that may be the ultimate healthy habit of them all.

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Healthy Eating Makes Kids Happier

A happy, healthy child – isn’t that what every parent wants? Fortunately, there’s a way to help accomplish both simultaneously! Here’s how Science Daily summarized findings of a recent study published in BMC Public Health: “Healthy eating is associated with better self-esteem and fewer emotional and peer problems, such as having fewer friends or being picked on or bullied, in children regardless of body weight, according to a new study. Inversely, better self-esteem is associated with better adherence to healthy eating guidelines.”

The study examined eating habits, self-esteem and emotional / peer interaction in more than 7,500 children ages 2-9. Higher Health Dietary Adherence Scores at the beginning of the study equated to better self-esteem and less emotional / peer problems several years later. Children were assigned initial dietary scores based on parental reporting of child food consumption, including how often their children ate certain foods. In particular, high consumption of fruits and vegetables was associated with better mental / emotional health.

Healthy eating isn’t just for your physical health; your emotional and mental health benefit, too! And those benefits are no more important than for our children. After all, a happy, health child sets the stage for a happy, healthy adult! Talk to your doctor to learn more.

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Stand Up Straight

I remember reading a quote in the American Journal of Pain Management that said “To live a long, active, energetic life, few things matter more than good posture.” Postural issues are a big contributor to many different aches and pains and injuries to our bodies. Injuries related to poor posture tend to be overuse injuries, which build up over a period of time. Slouched sitting for extended periods of time at a desk or in front of the TV can cause the shoulder joints to sit in a forwards position. This causes a muscle imbalance where the chest muscles are tight and the upper back muscles are weak. If you suffer with low back pain that developed slow and gradual with no history of trauma or overuse, the problem may be due to poor posture. Slumped sitting usually causes the arch of the back to flex or round and this places extra strain on the muscles and ligaments, which support the lower back. This results in muscle spasms and sometimes muscle strains.

Sitting, staring at a computer screen for hours on end, allowing your shoulders to round and your neck protrudes forward can cause aches and stiffness in the neck-shoulder area and even cause headaches. An accumulation of poor posture day-in and day-out can result in shortening of the chest muscles and weakening of the small, postural upper back and neck muscles, which work to pull the shoulders back. Once the rounded shoulders and forward head posture become a habit, it is hard to break that pattern.

lower back pain - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Most people get out of bed in the morning and go sit down at a table and eat breakfast, then get in there car and drive to work. Large chunks of the work day is spent sitting hunched over a computer or in a vehicle driving to appointments. After work people go home and sit at the dinner table and then sit slumped on a couch to watch TV until they go to bed. This excess sitting for long periods during the day and night adversely affects posture, which in turn effects your performance in your activities and is quite often a predisposing factor in injury.

I understand most people need to spend on average eight to 10 hours each day at work. Don’t be one of those people who sit unconsciously in improper body positions and engage in repetitive movements that create muscle imbalances leading to poor posture. Poor self esteem, psychological distress & depressive symptoms are all related to poor posture. The most natural thing you can do here is increase your ‘”get up” and “move around” time. Create a variety of movement in your activities of daily living.

If you have poor flexibility, try some simple yoga. Muscle imbalances and joint dysfunctions associated with poor posture can create areas of too much motion in certain spinal segments causing instability. These areas may then wear out prematurely, while other areas may have too little motion in the spine causing range of motion/mobility dysfunctions; anytime you have a right side – left side imbalance, we call that an asymmetry. If you have an asymmetry in your muscles, you are more susceptible to injury.

Improve your posture by using these techniques:

  1. Become aware of the things that you are doing, even the things that you don’t even know you are doing that are contributing (harming) to your posture.
  2. Think of staying in a “tall spine” posture (while sitting, standing, during exercise).
  3. Take frequent breaks from sitting and use the Brugger’s postural relief position as one of your style of breaks.
  4. Know what it feels like to be in proper posture alignment and frequently try to duplicate that feeling – sometimes clients don’t even know what good posture feels like and looks like.

Taking frequent breaks from sitting at your desk is one of the most important things you can do for prevention of poor posture. Become aware of the times that you are doing repetitive movements and/or sustained postures, i.e., the mattress you sleep on may be worn out and contribute to microtrauma to the tissues causing altered spinal curves. The position you sleep in is important – the least offensive sleep position is on your back, then side lying with a pillow between the knees, and the least desirable position is on the stomach. A pillow with a good cervical support is important – a pillow without any cervical support may contribute to altered neck curves. The chair at your work station should allow you to sit upright rather than in a slumped posture.

Other things that maybe harming our posture: I think our moods influence our posture; a person who is depressed has a classic hunched over looking appearance. Even our exercise choices need to be scrutinized. If you perform the same exercise over and over such as cyclists who spend 2-3 hours riding their bicycles in a position of lumbar flexion develop a reduced lumbar curve; long distance swimmers who perform repeated motions may experience shoulder pain from altered posture and faulty biomechanics. For any person who sits eight hours a day hunched over a computer, the last thing that person needs to do is spend time hunched over a bicycle for recreation or pounding out bench presses at the gym.

The shoes you wear daily are important to maintain – worn out soles could contribute to foot and ankle malpositions leading to altered posture; foot pronation issues may require an insert or orthotic – this can help improve gait and posture by correcting faulty biomechanics.

I always recommend that we improve our ability to take deep breaths and expand the lungs capacity. Using the cue “breath into the back” helps improve posture.

Let me be perfectly clear – you can improve your posture – first become aware of your posture. Second requires training your body with simple exercise maneuvers and progressing to more challenging strength exercises.

Here are some simple exercises to get you started:

  1. Engage in daily use of the foam roll to provide self-myofascial release and self massage. Spend 3-5 minutes rolling out the thoracic spine and shoulders.
  2. Make sure you know how to go from “sitting to standing” properly. Stand upright (tall spine) imagining a sting attached to the base of the skull is lifting you upright, rather than leaning forward at the waist when going from sitting to standing. Once you are up, raise the hands above the head with the arms extended and with the elbows in line with the ears. Lean or bend backward as far as possible, making sure the hips go forward and the arms go backwards simultaneously. Repeat this maneuver 10 times.
  3. Perform “Chair Decompression”: The person sits in an upright chair with their arms behind them, slightly bent, hands on the seat of the back of the chair. They push downward, straightening the arms and leaving the buttocks in the chair, unloading the trunk and spine. Keep the arms externally rotated; this moves the upper body into something similar to Brugger’s.
  4. Perform Brugger’s relief position: Sit at the edge of a chair; Put your knees apart (wide) and your feet under the knees: Arch your back; Rotate your arms outward so your palms face forward; Separate your fingers and point your thumb backward; Tuck in your chin; Hold this position while taking a deep breath in though your abdomen. HOLD the position for 5 seconds, release for 3 seconds, Repeat 3-5 times.
  5. Perform Cobra: Laying face down on the floor-in prone position, have arms beside your hips. Activate the core by drawing in your navel towards spine and squeezing the glutes. With your core and glutes activated, lift the chest off the floor, lift arms up and back towards the hips rotating thumbs towards the ceiling. Pause momentarily at the top of the lift then return to starting position; at all times keeping the chin tucked into the chest and the feet on the floor. Upon completion of the movement, repeat. Don’t over emphasize arching of the back to the lift the chest off floor. Only lift to where you are comfortable – no lower back pain should be felt. Note: hold for 2-3 seconds. Repeat 5 times.
  6. Core training including the abdominals, lower back, gluteus, and hips is important for pelvis alignment.
  7. Strength training exercises include A) Bent over back rows. Bend over from the hips with the torso parallel to the floor. Pull either bands or free weights up, squeezing your shoulder blades as close together as you go). B) Standing or seated rowing exercises – start with your arms in front of the body holding on to a band or cable machine. Pull straight back bending at the elbows with the hands moving back along the sides of the body. C) Back Flys – Gripping on to a cable machine or bands, extend your arms into a wing span position.

By Dr. Jeffrey Tucker

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Exercise Now, Reduce Fracture Risk Later

In the latest study to emphasize the long-term benefits of exercise, researchers evaluated bone mineral density, a predictor of bone fracture risk, in active / retired male elite soccer players and control subjects (non-soccer players). More than 30 years after retirement from sports, soccer players had a significant reduced risk of bone fractures compared to control subjects. The researchers concluded: “Exercise-associated bone trait benefits are found long term after retirement from sports together with a lower fracture risk. This indicates that physical activity in youth could reduce the burden of fragility fractures.”

How much exercise do your children get on a daily basis? For that matter, how much do you get? Rather than risk a debilitating bone fracture, not to mention the countless other health consequences attributable to lack of exercise, why not kick off 2015 by committing to a consistent program of cardiovascular and resistance exercise? Talk to your doctor for more information.

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