Sugar. We all love it. But why? There are a few reasons why we crave the sweet stuff. For instance, studies have shown that women may crave sweets more often than men due to the female hormone estradiol. This hormone is an important part of reproductive and sexual function—which also might explain why some women report sugar cravings around the time of their period or during menopause or perimenopause.
Other reported causes of sugar cravings could be due to a sluggish or overloaded adrenal gland, a yeast infection, an underactive thyroid gland, an imbalance of beneficial gut bacteria, and stress.
Sound familiar? You're not alone.
Of course, eating healthy can help alleviate many of these issues—and there are also other ways to help curb your cravings. Here are four tips to help you kick the sugar habit.
Avoid Processed Foods
When we eat sugar our brains light up, more so than it does when other stimulants are used, and it's a reward system. The brain likes getting excited, so it tells your body to give it more. This means that high-sugar foods may cause the body to crave more food—and more sweet foods, specifically. This is similar to addictions to drugs like cocaine where the brain becomes wired to crave more. Many processed foods contain high levels of sugar among other undesirable ingredients. The more you can avoid these foods, the less likely you are to crave them.
Salty Sweet Visualization Exercises
When you find yourself tempted to eat something sugary that you know you shouldn't, imagine that you’ve poured salt all over it. Or, if you're struggling to resist a plate full of cookies, visualize yourself shaking salt all over them and then taking salty bite after salty bite. Experts say this works because, believe it or not, humans have a natural aversion to overly salted foods. It's simple, but this trick works well for a lot of people.
Eat More Fermented Foods and Probiotics
Combat those sugar cravings by adding fermented foods and probiotics into your diet. Fermented foods and liquids, as well as probiotics, restore balance in your healthy gut bacteria. If you have "bad" gut bacteria/microbes, they can influence your cravings through nerve pathways linked to your stomach and brain. Adding more "good" bacteria/microbes helps offset this negative effect.
Keep Your Blood Sugar Stable
This may sound like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t keep their blood sugar stable. This instability can cause a lack of energy, an increase in cravings, mood swings, memory issues and imbalanced hormones. To balance your blood sugar, eat foods low on the glycemic index such as vegetables, berries, nuts, and seeds. It can also be helpful to eat several small meals throughout the day, making sure you get protein with every meal, and you don’t skip breakfast. Remember to also minimize your soda intake as it's a notorious source of hidden sugars.
If you'd like help with kicking the sugar habit, we are here for you. Our team at Pure Life Chiropractic can provide you the support you need so you're living life without the sugar crutch. Give us a call today at 541-343-5633
In today's world, with all the pressures put upon us from work, family and social obligations, we're running on empty at best. Fatigue is normal, and relief often comes in forms not so good for our bodies. Without realizing it, time flies by, and we're merely existing, not living. The good news is that you don't have to live like this. We each have the power to make choices that support the five pillars of health, explained below.
Pillar #1 Positive Mental Attitude
Your own internal words and thoughts directly influence you and guide your success through the day. To accomplish the other four pillars and anything else in life, a positive mental attitude is critical. Belief in yourself is step number one.
Pillar #2 Proper Working Nervous System
Your body relies on the nervous system for every function it performs. It's what enables your heart to beat, your lungs to breathe, your stomach to digest, etc. without you even having to think about it. Your brain is sending messages down your spinal cord and through nerves coming out of every level of the spine. These go to every last organ, muscle, tissue, and cell of the body. Because your nervous system controls all aspects of your body, it's important that all flow of energy is free and clear.
Pillar #3 Proper Exercise
Regular exercise keeps your brain and joints healthy. As long as you're moving, you're doing good for your body. All it takes is 20-30 minutes of simple walking to make a difference. The benefits of exercising daily are numerous including strengthening your muscles, improving your joint mobility, it reduces stress, helps you lose weight, and improves your cardiovascular health.
Pillar #4 Proper Nutrition
Our bodies naturally crave nutritious, high-quality foods. Unfortunately, with stress and life's pressures, we've succumbed to the convenience of fast food, large portions, refined carbs, and processed foods. As best as you can, switching to a habit of eating a well-balanced diet will help give you more energy, sleep better, heal damaged tissues and organs, and maintain proper weight. When you fuel your body with healthy food, you fuel it for better performance.
Pillar #5 Proper Rest and Relaxation
Last but not least, our bodies need downtime to recharge the batteries. But it's about getting the right amount of sleep. Too much sleep can be just as unhealthy as too little. Ideally, 6-8 hours will give your body what it needs. When you give your body the rest it needs, it can relax, decrease stress, and heal.
Learn more about how chiropractic care can help support your journey to better health and keep you on the right path with the five pillars of health. Come see us at Pure Life Chiropractic today, located in Eugene, Oregon. 541-343-5633
If you're looking for a quick, healthy dinner option, look no further. This recipe is easy and delicious and perfect for any night of the week.
It's just how it works — you get hurt, but relief is not there when you need it. Whether it's a sprain or sore muscles from a workout, locating an ice pack so you can apply it quickly can be a challenge if you're not at home. That's where Biofreeze can be of help — it's a pain relieving analgesic that provides the same effect as ice, in a convenient, portable form.
Biofreeze is useful for treating not only sprains and sore muscles, but also arthritis and other types of joint pain. It comes in gel, spray or roll-on form, and is a type of cryotherapy (cold therapy). Its active ingredient is menthol (from the mint family of plants), which causes your brain to interpret the nerve signals being sent as a sensation of cold, triggering a reduction in inflammation.
The cold therapy of Biofreeze works by causing ligand molecules to attach themselves to your nerve’s cold receptors, which effectively helps to numb the area, interfering with pain signals traveling to the brain. The menthol in Biofreeze also induces vasodilation, which increases blood flow to the injured area, allowing cellular waste products to be swept away more efficiently and for healing oxygen and nutrients to be delivered to the cells.
Besides menthol, Biofreeze contains other herbal ingredients including Ilex Paraguariensis (also known as Yerba mate, a plant native to South America with antioxidant properties), Arnica, Calendula, Aloe, Boswellia, Green Tea, Burdock, Lemon Balm, and vitamin E. All of these natural ingredients have been used for centuries to treat tissue injuries such as bruises, sprains, and strains. Camphor, another ingredient in Biofreeze, has both numbing and antiseptic properties.
How do you use Biofreeze?
You can massage Biofreeze gel into your skin (or apply it with the roll-on or spray) up to four times a day. It can also be useful for any therapy, such as chiropractic care or physical therapy. When applied ahead of time, Biofreeze can help relieve the pain that would have interfered with you getting the most out of your treatment.
Biofreeze is available for purchase at our chiropractic office in Eugene. Next time you're in to see us, ask about getting some to help with your healing.
If you're waking up with neck pain in the morning, chances are you're not getting the support you need from your pillow. If you've been in our office lately, you may have noticed the product display in our front lobby. In this display are pillows — contour pillows to be more exact. If you're tired of the pain, it's time to give one a try. Here are 4 reasons why...
1. Contour pillows help keep the neck and back correctly aligned.
Proper body alignment is essential for warding off muscle pain and relieving muscle tension headaches. Without a contour pillow, you may sleep at an odd angle, creating or making existing pain worse. By placing a contour pillow under your neck, you maintain proper alignment.
2. Contour pillows retain their shape.
Traditional pillows work fine at first, but then they flatten out and stop providing support for the head and neck. If you've ever woken at night to re-puff or re-fluff your pillows, you know what we mean. Contour pillows are made from memory foam, which has chemical properties that allow it to mold to your body. After you get up, the pillow returns to its original shape. This means that a contour pillow will provide consistent support and help prevent neck pain.
3. Contour pillows reduce snoring and can improve the symptoms of sleep apnea.
Some people snore because their airways become partially obstructed while sleeping. This obstruction is especially prevalent in people who sleep on their backs. Raising the head slightly, with a contour pillow, may prevent partial obstruction of the airway, which reduces snoring and may help prevent the episodes of interrupted breathing that occur in people with sleep apnea.
4. Contour pillows reduce pressure on the joints.
Pressure on the joints is one of the primary causes of soreness and stiffness upon waking. When joints are stiff or sore, you may have a hard time getting out of bed or starting your day. Contour pillows cushion the joints, reducing the likelihood of soreness and stiffness.
Which way do you sleep on a contour pillow?
Place the flat side of your pillow down and orient the pillow with the larger of the two curves toward the foot of your bed. This placement will provide maximum support for your head and neck, regardless of whether you sleep on your side or your back. Settle into your pillow and let your head sink in. It will feel different at first, but you'll get used to it soon enough.
If you are experiencing neck pain, we encourage you to see us for an evaluation, and we'll discuss options for pillows, treatments, etc. so you can get relief and start feeling better. Call us at Pure Life Chiropractic today to schedule an appointment. 541-343-5633
Winter can cause challenges when it comes to maintaining your fitness routine. Between the onslaught of rain, slip and fall hazards, and colder temperatures, your usual outdoor routines can be challenging at best. But if you don’t want to join a gym, there are multiple ways to still get a good workout in the comfort of your home. Here are a few easy-to-adapt exercises to keep you moving.
Even if it may not seem like much at the time, the cumulative benefit of daily movement can yield great returns for your body. Between reduced stress, increased flexibility, and overall health gains, your body will thank you. And, if you really want to treat your body, consider scheduling a massage. Massage is an excellent complement to any fitness routine as it helps work out tightness in the muscles that can hamper your movement. Schedule an appointment today with one of our fantastic therapists. 541-343-5633
We've all experienced a slip and fall accident. They're a part of life and sometimes impossible to avoid. But, as frequent as slip and fall accidents occur, there is a disconnect when it comes to seeking treatment. People tend to downplay the significance of the trauma, assuming the pain will go away and that it's no big deal. However, the injury could be more severe than you think and getting checked when the injury occurs helps prevent future issues.
Common causes of slip and fall accidents:
Treatment options vary depending on the type of injury sustained from a slip and fall accident. Chiropractic care, especially when coupled with x-rays, can be beneficial to address any subluxations resulting from the accident. Treatment from other medical professionals may also be helpful if the injuries are more severe.
Soft tissue injuries are not visible which can make treatment more difficult to determine. These types of injuries could include minor ankle and wrist sprains to devastating tears in tendons and ligaments. Chiropractic care coupled with massage therapy or physical therapy may be the best route.
If you hit your head, it's important to seek medical care. Even if you thought it was just a little bump, a minor head injury could quickly turn into a medical emergency. If there is swelling, bleeding, or even a brief loss of consciousness you may have a concussion. Minor concussions usually clear up on their own, but more serious brain injuries can permanently alter your ability to function. Head injuries cannot be diagnosed based on symptoms alone, and some very serious head injuries produce only minimal symptoms at first. No matter how inconvenient it is or how “fine” you feel, your first stop after a head injury should be to your doctor. New technology is available that enables a physician to determine the degree of brain injury more precisely than ever before.
If your slip and fall accident causes cuts and abrasions, they can look quite severe, but typically these injuries are often less worrisome. Leg and arm abrasions are common, as are wounds to the head and hips. In most cases, these injuries only require superficial treatment, and perhaps some stitches. Seeking treatment from your primary care doctor could be beneficial as well as a visit to your chiropractor.
Not as often as other injuries, but sometimes spinal cord injuries during a slip and fall accident. But when they do occur, these injuries are almost always life-threatening and demand immediate medical care, as well as ongoing treatment. You'll want to see your physician as soon as possible. After a determination that there is no further risk to the spinal cord, treatment with a chiropractor can help align the spine so the muscles and vertebrae don't move back into a position where damage can occur.
Lastly, broken bones can result from a slip and fall accident and can be quite painful. Whether you sustain a minor fracture or a severe break requiring surgery, the tissue surrounding the broken bone(s) may also be damaged, necessitating long-term therapy to prevent chronic pain and neuromuscular dysfunction. After seeking a diagnosis from your physician and x-rays, a combination of chiropractic care, physical therapy, and massage therapy can get you back to feeling better.
If you suffer a slip and fall accident in Eugene, Oregon, please give our office a call. The doctors at Pure Life Chiropractic can help assess and provide treatment to get you back to feeling better. Call us today! 541-343-5633
Stabilizing your shoulders are a group of muscles commonly known as the rotator cuff. As we age, it is possible for these muscles to become strained and cause pain. Additionally, falling or other traumas to the shoulder can cause injury to the area. Winter is a time of year when this type of injury can occur more frequently. From snow sports such as snowboarding to something as simple as slipping on ice, it is vital to recognize when you may have an injury to your rotator cuff. If you suspect injury, follow these tips to help treat the pain.
RICE and Anti-inflammatory medication
Rest — Give your shoulder a break. Try to limit activities that require you to use the injured shoulder for a couple of days.
Ice — Apply ice to the injured area to reduce inflammation.
Compress — Apply a compress to control swelling.
Elevate — Do your best to elevate the area above the level of your heart.
Take over the counter anti-inflammatory medication (as needed), such as ibuprofen, to help reduce inflammation and pain.
Pendulum Swings — Bend at your waist using a table for support. Let the injured arm hang freely. Begin swinging your injured arm in a circular direction from one foot to the other. After about 5 minutes switch directions. Again bend at your waist using a table for support. Swing the injured arm from front to back ensuring that you are limiting resistance. Do this for 5 minutes.
Doorway Stretch — Standing in a doorway, place one hand on each side of the opening. Slowly lean forward into the opening shifting your weight to your toes. Once you start to feel a light stretch, stop to avoid over stretching. Hold the stretch for about 30 seconds and repeat 2-3 times.
Cross-arm Stretch — Standing with good posture and your shoulders relaxed, pull one arm across your chest as far as you can and hold for around 30 seconds. Repeat the stretch on the opposite side. Do this stretch 2-3 times.
If your pain continues to worsen or does not go away, make sure to give us a call. The trained staff in our Eugene chiropractic office can evaluate your injury and create a plan to alleviate your pain. 541-343-5633
Running is one of the most common ways to stay active, especially with the miles of trails surrounding Eugene. In our neck of the woods, it is hard to resist the urge to get outside and take advantage of the scenery on a nice long run. Unfortunately, running can take a toll on the body and cause injury. Here is a breakdown of three of the most common running injuries and how to treat them.
Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of muscles on the bottom of the foot. The first signs of this are a burning and painful sensation on the bottom of the foot, typically near the heal. It is important to rest and avoid running while you are experiencing pain. Ice and elevate the foot to reduce inflammation. Once you feel the pain is gone, it is important to wear good shoes and try an insert that helps reduce the impact on the strained muscles. In addition, stretching the muscles that are causing the problem is another way to prevent recurring incidents.
Shin splints, like plantar fasciitis, are caused by the heavy use of muscles and tendons during running. Like its name suggests the pain experienced is in the lower legs. Often this occurs when one changes the amount of stress they are placing on the muscles. For instance, if you recently increased the distance you run, you may experience shin splints. Similar to other muscle injuries, it is important to reduce the inflammation with ice, elevation, and rest. Easing into a new routine along with gear that reduces impact can help to prevent this type of injury.
Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome (Runners Knee)
Patellofemoral pain syndrome or “runners knee” is caused by the irritation of the cartilage under the kneecap. Symptoms include pain on top of or behind the kneecap and can be exacerbated by squatting and stairs. Again, rest, ice, and elevation are in order. Also, it is crucial to strengthen and align muscles in the hips and quads to ensure proper rotation of the femur to prevent further irritation of the cartilage.
These injuries are just three of the most common injuries faced by runners. The impact of the activity can cause a variety of different ailments, and it is important to recognize when it is time to take a break. If the pain from one of these injuries does not go away on its own after trying the methods mentioned in this article, call Pure Life Chiropractic today. Some injuries are worse than others, and our experienced staff is trained to help you recover and become stronger than ever. 541-343-5633
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