5 tips to stay healthy at Christmas

I know it doesn’t look like it outside with the beautiful weather we’ve been having, but, it is less than one month until Christmas! Wow! We spent last weekend decorating our house for Christmas. It made it real that we are about to get into the full swing of the season soon – the holiday parties, work parties, time spent at malls, extra time spent baking and cooking, taking children to their activities and parties and whatever else is added to your already full plate. I know how busy Christmas time can be and I know it adds extra stress to our lives, so I wanted to share my 5 steps to help you cope with the Christmas madness.

 

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Here are my 5 top tips to stay healthy for you busy professionals and busy moms out there!

 

1) Drink water! We tend to drink more alcohol than usual and/or eat more sweets during the holiday season and with that, it is even more important to drink more water. Try adding an extra 2 -3 glasses of water on those days you know you will indulge more than usual. An easy way to do this is drink a large glass of water first thing in the morning before you eat breakfast and again right before you eat lunch. Then drink the rest of you water as usual throughout the day.

 

2) SLEEP!!! This is an area that I always find gets interrupted in stressful times. Do your best to create a quiet and calm sleep environment and if you have a busy child filled household, take turns with your spouse and sharing extra sleeping time. You can also click HERE to learn more about a blog I previously wrote on sleep.

 

3) Keep exercising! Not only is it good to burn those extra holiday calories, it is also good way to rid the body of stress and to keep your body strong. It also helps with getting a more restful sleep. Move your body!

 

4) Continue getting your regular Chiropractic adjustments!   I find adjustments help my body to handle stress better, they help to prevent injuries and other health concerns. Adjustments are not an area to slow down frequency in times of busyness and stress – it is an area to increase! Listen to your body.

 

5) Supplement with high quality vitamins. My top 3 supplements are multi-probiotics for a healthy digestive track and immune system, Vitamin D due to our lack of sunlight in the winter months and to help with mood and all over body function, and omega 3 fish oils to help balance internal inflammation and can curb stiffness and joint pain. I offer Douglas Labs supplements in our office for our patients to purchase.

 

Hope these quick 5 tips help to keep you as healthy and stress free over the holiday months.

 

Dr. Michelle

 

 

 

3 Tips for Keeping You Healthy for Fall Running

As the cooler weather approaches so does the beautiful colours, crisp evenings, and the pep in your step to get out and enjoy it all. But as the cooler days and evenings come as does the shorter amounts of daylight. If you are anything like me you love to jog and enjoy the scenery whether that’s watching the sun slowly lower over the horizon while running in your neighbourhood on the week nights, or on the weekends enjoying a nice trail or park land.

With all this being said here are some safety tips to remember with the change of season. Its easy to overlook these simple things, but they are key to your health.

  1. Make sure you warm up. This can be something as simple as starting your jog or bike ride at a light and slow pace. It’s important to warm up your legs yes, but don’t forget your arms to (they help you keep your momentum and are involved more than you think) also it’s important to make sure all your core and torso muscles are warm before stressing them. But as mentioned make sure those legs are warm. Nothing can hinder a jog more than a muscle strain/tear, that can lead to irregular gait patterns and unnecessary stresses to the joints.
  2. Don’t forget to stretch after! Another downfall with cooler weather is once your inside don’t forget those muscles are warm and worked hard, give them the proper cool down and hold each stretch for 30 seconds. Don’t forget to stretch your whole body, this will allow for a more positive recovery, and a great way to get that heart rate back down.
  3. Keep yourself safe! If it’s around that dusk or dawn time play it safe, remember to wear bright clothing even if you are on a sidewalk. With today’s fashions you can get so many tops, pants and shoes with reflective material that is subtle you don’t feel like a traffic pylon, but you allow vehicles and other to see you, making everyone safer. Also if sidewalks are available try use them as much as possible, if the boulevard is level that’s also a great alternative to being on the road. But regardless what terrain you are on make sure it’s well lit, this will decrease the risk of tripping, slipping and falling. Those fall leaves out there can make any terrain slippery if you step on them without knowing. Keep yourself safe and know your route and what types of potential hazards you may come across.

 

By:  Lauren Weber, RMT

 

 

 

Our very own vegetable garden

We harvested our very own garden this weekend! Yay!!!!

 

The veggies taste soooo much better when they are fresh from the vegetable garden. It really is incredible the difference in taste.

garden cucumbers

I love that we used organic soil, planted organic veggies and now we can look forward to more lettuce and cucumbers, as well as tomatoes, peppers, onions, broccoli and herbs in the future.

 

I didn’t realize how easy it was to have a garden! With some help and guidance from our parents and YouTube, we bought soil and seedlings and plant food, and we water every other day when needed. We are about to have so many nutritious meals that taste so fresh and delicious and simply involve a quick walk to the back yard. And the price is great too! Such a healthy thing to do!

 

Not only is it healthy for our body to eat fresh and nutritious vegetables, it is also healthy for our mind and soul. It always feels relaxing to spend time with my hands and feet in the soil and for my mind to be clear while working with the earth.   It always feels very satisfying to see the “fruits of your labour” or “veggies of your labour” in this case. 😉

 

There are so many great reasons to have a garden and I would love to see pictures and learn about your gardening adventures too.

garden

Cheers to fresh veggies!

 

Dr. M

 

 

 

6 Ways to Get the Most Benefit out of your Massage – by Heather Vance, RMT

Whether you have had treatments before, or if you are new to the world of Massage Therapy, I’ve created a list of a few tips to help you receive the absolute most benefit from your massage appointments.

  1. Do not eat a big meal before your treatment.

Consuming a large meal can leave us feeling uncomfortable and often quite bloated. Not many people want to lay on their stomach while experiencing that discomfort, not to mention having someone apply pressure onto their back!

Apart from the discomfort, it is important to not arrive feeling ‘full’ because while your body is busy trying to digest that meal, your mind is being distracted and therefore unable to fully drift into a relaxed state.

On the other hand, nothing can be as distracting as hunger pains while you are trying to relax and reap the full benefits from your treatment. So, if you must eat, try to have a light snack before your treatment, just to hold you over for a couple of hours.

 

  1. Arrive early, or on time for your appointment.

Try to ensure that you are a few minutes early so that you can begin the relaxation process before you even get on the table. If you arrive late or rushed, it may take longer to ‘shut off your mind’ or to relax during the treatment.

 

  1. Communicate with your Therapist.
  • Ensure that you provide your RMT with an accurate health history upon your first visit, especially making aware to your therapist if you have any allergies or sensitivities to lotions or detergents or if you have taken any medications prior to treatment. As RMT’s, we rely on this information to provide the most safe and effective treatment for you.
  • If you have previous massage experience, let your therapist know your preferences. For example, RMT’s will often play music during your sessions to aide with the relaxation process. Let them know if you like or dislike the chosen music so that we can choose something more appropriate for your tastes. Furthermore, some clients like to talk during their sessions and others do not, so don’t be afraid to tell your RMT which you prefer. It is your time, and we want you to have the best experience possible.
  • Your therapist should be checking in with you periodically throughout your treatment asking for feedback relating to pressure, comfort and any concerns you may have. If they are not, it is still important that you give them this information. Make sure that you speak up if the pressure is too much or not enough, or if there is something that just doesn’t feel right. Massage does NOT need to be painful to be beneficial, and it really just depends on each individual’s preference. What works for some may not work for others, and as RMT’s we need to know which is best suited for you.

 

  1. Relax your muscles and your mind.

You may notice that during your treatment you may be ‘flexing’ your muscles against the techniques that your therapist is performing. It is important to do your best to completely relax your muscles to the techniques, otherwise, each time you tense your muscles, it is like the therapist having to start the relaxation process all over again. Here is where you need to communicate that this is happening with your therapist so that they can take a different approach to treating that muscle.

Almost as important is being able to ‘shut off’ your mind during your massage. Remember: A relaxed mind = a relaxed body and a stressed mind = a tense body. Try not to spend your session thinking about the tasks that you have to complete that day, or how you have to drive your kids all over the city for sports, or what you can’t forget to pick up at the grocery store. As corny as it sounds, try to go to your “happy place”. Let go of all of life’s business and just BE.

 

5.  Hydrate

I can’t stress enough how important consuming water is to getting the most beneficial results from your massage. As RMT’s we are helping to remove wastes and toxins from your body by encouraging better circulation through your blood and lymph systems. Those systems are fluid based, and therefore need water in order to function properly. You may have heard how consuming lots of water AFTER a massage can be beneficial to flushing out said wastes and toxins post treatment, but it is equally important to consume some water BEFORE your treatment. Your blood is mostly water, and if you are dehydrated, you may have a more sluggish circulation, therefore taking more effort from your bloodstream to receive and move the excess wastes and toxins out of your body.

 

  1. Schedule more treatments.

After your massage, be prepared to schedule more sessions. The therapeutic effects of Massage Therapy are cumulative, meaning that the benefits and effects of massage get better over time with more treatment. So, the more massages you get, the quicker you can relax, the better you will feel, and the more quickly you will respond to the techniques during each session.

Book Appointment

Heather Vance, RMT at Campbell Care Centre

Instructor at the D’Arcy Lane Institute of Massage Therapy

Winner – Best of London 2014, 2015

“My name is Heather Vance and I am a Registered Massage Therapist at Campbell Care Centre in London Ontario.  I help people in their  reduction of muscle tension and stiffness, greater flexibility and range of motion, promotion of faster healing of soft tissue injuries such as pulled muscles and sprained ligaments, reduction in the formation of scar tissue following injury and relief of many conditions including Repetitive Strain Injuries, Back Pain and Headaches.”

 

HeatherVance

Dr. Michelle’s top 5 tips for SLEEP! Zzzzzzz

Sleep … everyone wants it, but not everyone gets it.

Moon Representing Sleep

Many people ask me in my office how they should sleep to minimize pain and discomfort and how to get a good nights rest.

My number one tip to help with sleep is to get your Chiropractic Adjustments!  The adjustments help the nervous system to calm down and takes aches and pains away so your body can have a good nights sleep.  Many patients report to me that the day of their adjustments they sleep more soundly.

Outside of that number one reason, here are my other top 5 tips for sleep:

1) Exercise, Exercise, Exercise. Your sleep will get better when you are physically active. No question. Period.

 

2) Avoid alcohol on nights you need a good sleep. Some people think that alcohol will help you to get a goods night sleep, but it is the opposite. It is one of the worst things to interrupt sleep.  A magnesium supplement also helps with sleep!

 

3) Avoid screen time directly before bed. Put your computer away and try to leave your phone in a different room away from you. Not only could a bad text or email leave you frustrated before bed, the white lights from the electronics interfere with your sleep.

 

4) Lavender essential oil is amazing! I diffuse it in the bedroom before sleep and take a few drops and put it under my nose and on my wrists. It helps me to have a more restful sleep.

 

5) Sleep in a good neutral spinal position. This helps you to avoid waking up with aches and pains. To protect your low back, sleep on your back with a pillow under your knees or on your side with a pillow between your knees. Your neck will also want to be in a good neutral position. If you sleep on your back, a thinner pillow is needed to avoid raising or lowering your neck. If you sleep on your side, a pillow large enough to go from your head to the edge of your shoulder is needed.

Different people need different sizes of pillows and there are stores that will measure you to ensure the perfect fit. There is no magic pillow – find one that is the right size for your body and style of sleep and feels good to you!

 

Happy ZZZZZZssss!!!!!

Dr. Michelle