7 Ways to Stay Healthy This Holiday Season

The holiday season is exciting for a number of reasons. People look forward to all of the holiday parties, seeing their family and friends and participating in their favorite holiday traditions. These things are enough to make anyone look forward to the holiday season, but there are some issues that can sometimes accompany this season as well. One of those issues is the common occurrence of illness during the holiday season.

There are a lot of reasons why people get sick more easily during the holiday season. From being around more people, spending more time inside, to the heightened amount of stress that people experience during this season, there are a lot of things that can make people more susceptible to illness and disease. Here are seven ways that people can stay healthy during the holiday season.

Utilize preventative healthcare

There are a lot of healthcare options today that utilize preventative health practices instead of just waiting for illness and disease to set in. This approach can make a big difference in everyone’s life. Everyone should look for their own wellness plan of America that can help them reach their healthiest lifestyle and maintain good health year round.

Disinfect

Disinfecting everything that one touches should be a priority for everyone during the winter season. Many things are shared in a close proximity during the holiday season, from airplane seats to coffee tables in the home, which can cause the spread of a lot of germs. Everyone should disinfect the things they touch often to avoid illness.

Stay active

Many people adopt a more sedentary lifestyle around the holidays, but this can lower the immune system’s ability to fight disease. Everyone should try to get in a little physical activity each day. Try cross country skiing or invest in a treadmill.

Maintain a healthy diet

Healthy eating is not always easy, but it can be extremely difficult in the winter season. Most holiday traditions involve unhealthy food items, but in order to stay healthy, everyone needs to make sure they are getting the right amount of healthy foods each day to supply the nutrients their bodies need. Try substituting some unhealthy holiday dishes with a healthier version.

Avoid sharing

The holiday season is all about giving, but everyone should avoid giving out their germs. Everyone should try to avoid sharing things with others in order to avoid transferring sicknesses. People can stock up on extra pens and use personal keyboards instead of shared ones to avoid illness.

Use immune system boosting supplements

There are a lot of supplements that people can take in order to boost their immune system for the holiday season. Some of these supplements include Echinacea, turmeric, vitamin C and D, and zinc. Try out some of these options to stay healthier all year long.

Reduce the holiday stress

The holiday season comes with a lot of stress for a lot of people. Though all of these stressors cannot be avoided, people can do a lot by recognizing these stressors and making time to relieve stress. Planning ahead to avoid last minute issues, getting a weekly massage, or maintaining a daily exercise routine are all great ways for people to relieve stress.

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Make a Fresh Start – Self Help Tips for Overcoming Addiction

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As any addict knows, an addiction can form a tight grip on an individual’s life – their thoughts, actions, emotions, decisions and relationships can be dictated by that addiction. After that all important first step of acknowledging and admitting an addiction and then doing the hard work to get the right help to achieve sobriety, remaining clean and sober can be a huge challenge as well.

Perhaps the other most important step towards remaining sober and clean after overcoming alcohol or substance addiction would be to opt for a sober community which helps by offering safe housing after a detox treatment. Plus these self help tips can help you make a fresh start to take charge of your life and steer it towards the goals that you set:

Be honest with people close to you

Admit to friends, family and co-workers that you’ve recently recovered and that you plan to stay that way. This way you will receive the understanding and support that you need for your continued recovery. Friends will not pressure you to drink at a party; they’ll understand and get temptation out of your way at office dos and similar situations.

Continue treatment

Get yourself a sponsor who will help you continue with an outpatient treatment program. Get involved in the local chapter of Alcoholic Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous or a similar support group to bolster your recovery.  Helping fellow addicts can also be tremendously rewarding and can help to consolidate your own recovery.

Recognize triggers

Are there certain social situations that tend to trigger addictive behaviors in you? Perhaps there are certain people who trigger this behavior? Life’s problems and stresses can and do trigger addictive behaviors because you have long used your addiction as a means of escape or comfort. You will now have to learn how to avoid those triggers or to manage them effectively if you cannot avoid them altogether.

Learn coping mechanisms

Reduce instances of stress in your life. Learn a relaxing activity, practice meditation or visualization, get into an exercise program or even engage in a new sport, hobby or healthy pastime to reduce stress in your life. When confronted with the inevitable problems of life, develop healthy responses to these stresses; responses that do not involve substance use.

Pick up the phone to speak to a sponsor or a trusted friend or head out for some physical activity. Remind yourself of all the reasons why you took the trouble to recover and get sober, engage in positive thinking and amend your usual habits and behaviors to transform them into healthier ones. You could ride it out, when the urge strikes you – distract yourself by listening to some music or watching a favorite movie, get stuck into some household chores or cleaning or head out and run some errands.

It is important to stay committed to your recovery and to follow through with that commitment. Understand that it is going to be far from easy, but that positive results in future will ultimately outweigh the difficulties you face at present.

 

About the Author

Sarika Periwal writes to promote natural health and fitness. To get help staying sober, visit a facility such as AFreshStartSoberLiving to be around trained professionals. Receive guidance and reclaim your life.

 

More Than Just a Fake Lawn

An artificial lawn has many advantages that add to the beauty of your property while eliminating mowing and other maintenance time and cost.

Granted that synthetic grass and the preparation and installation is expensive, it is also long lasting, trouble free, and will eventually pay for itself. Since you don’t have to water, mow, trim, fertilize, pesticide, kill weeds, or reseed, it is expected to pay for itself in approximately eight years.

Think of the benefits of not taking the time and back-breaking effort and getting sore ears from listening to constant nerve-racking noise from mowers and blowers that are needed for the mowing and other constant chores associated with real grass. The synthetic turf only makes a whispery rustle on occasion.

Artificial grass like that made by Titan Turf looks natural because of the way it is assembled. It also feels natural to bare feet and on your pet’s paws! Plastic is used to create long smooth blades of grass that look like real grass. It is laid down like a carpet over ground that has been properly prepared by putting down and compressing sand and adding a drainage system. The lawn is rolled out in sheets in such a clever manner that it is impossible to see the seams or the darts in the corners. The best artificial grass is comprised of yarn or fibers that are quilted or tufted into a backing to create the normal appearance of an organic lawn plus a material that keeps the grass blades erect.

Regular grass is also a nightmare for both the lawn and the environment, especially if you live in a dry climate where drinkable water by the millions of gallons is dumped into lawns every day. Imagine the conservation of water with synthetic grass and how you will also reduce your carbon footprint.

Hundreds of thousands of gas-powered mowers that cut natural grass, as well as leaf blowers, put 11 times more pollution into the air every hour than a car does.

You can get synthetic lawn that’s summer long or putting-green short or in between. You can choose from dark green or light green and even choose the color of the springy underlayer. There are variegated strands that have some dark and some light to make it look real.

Synthetic turf is also perfect for landscaping around swimming pools with its superior drainage capabilities. Even property developers are looking to turf for lawn solutions these days.

Artificial turf looks like you just put in the world’s most realistic looking pristine sod and have created the most beautiful and colorful lawn. You can let people think you have an extremely green thumb and a silent, invisible mower!

Breathing for a Better, Happier You

Breathing-Diaphragm

Proper breathing is often ignored but is extremely essential to maintain your health and fitness. By breathing slowly and deeply, you ensure that sufficient oxygen is taken into your lungs and thereby into your bloodstream. Oxygen is required to get rid of various toxins that build up in our systems one of which is carbon dioxide. Your cells and muscles require fresh and sufficient oxygen in order to function properly and avoid fatigue, and as we age, there is automatic reduction in blood oxygen levels which can be improved with proper breathing.

There are several breathing techniques that can be followed to improve your breathing patterns, including deep relaxed breathing, the relaxing sigh, and the rolling breath. Whichever the technique, it is essential that the diaphragm is properly used. When you breathe, you should be aware of your diaphragm pulling down to expand your lungs and increase the inflow of oxygen, and then pushing back up to expel the carbon dioxide.

Use the Diaphragm

Utilizing the diaphragm in simple deep breathing, means being aware of your rib cage expanding, including the opening out of your floating ribs, and expanding your abdomen so that the diaphragm has the space to expand. You have to also lift up the upper chest and allow it to expand. At the end of your inhalation, reverse the process by letting your chest fall, contracting your ribs, and pulling your belly in. The process of this slow technique can further enhance lung capacity if you count as you breathe in and out. Start with five, and gradually build up the number of counts on each breath, making sure the length of breathing in and out is the same, and that you are comfortable with that time period.

Resistance Training

Deep breathing exercises can be enhanced with the use of a breath trainer. A breath trainer applies the principles of resistance training to your respiratory muscles which include those around your rib cage as well as your diaphragm. As you practice these exercises, your lung capacity will gradually increase, leading to improved intake of oxygen and increased amounts of oxygen in circulation, which helps with your capacity to burn fat.

Breathing-Diaphragm

Meditative Breathing

Another simple exercise is breath moving. In this technique, imagine that your breath moves to the top of your head when breathing in, and down to the base of the spine and perineum as well as to the bones you sit on when breathing out. This helps in improving your concentration.

Benefits of Proper Breathing

Proper breathing has several other benefits which include

  • an improved immune system
  • a calmer nervous system
  • better gut function
  • improved blood and lymphatic circulation
  • increased concentration
  • a better posture
  • better muscle and joint function
  • faster growth and repair overall

The physically movements of the diaphragm aid in giving you an internal massage of the heart, stomach intestines, pancreas and liver, increasing the circulation and movement of toxins through these organs. Besides the physical and physiological benefits to proper breathing, it also helps with mental and emotional well-being. By being physically more relaxed, stress levels decrease. A relaxed brain also releases more endorphins which are your body’s natural painkillers. It can deepen your meditation and powers of intuition, and help in connecting with your partner, both sexually and emotionally.

 

About the Author:

Sarika Periwal writes family care and healthy living articles for online publications. She recommends Breathslim to improve your breathing technique, increase lung capacity and live a healthier life.

 

Image courtesy http://www.kevinneeld.com/

Lifestyle Choices That Can Reduce Risk of Stroke

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A stroke is caused by the disturbance of blood supply to the brain – either hemorrhage or an interruption of blood supply to the brain. This can cause permanent neurological damage or even death. The seriousness of this medical emergency and the far-reaching consequences that it can have on an individual’s life as well as their family means that taking steps for prevention of a stroke are vitally important. Risk factors such as gender, age, genetic or ethnic predisposition are uncontrollable but there are lifestyle alterations you can make to reduce your risk.

People who have already had a stroke will have to take the guidance of their health care provider or nursing home facility for rehabilitation. However, if you have never had a stroke you should do your best to prevent it with the help of lifestyle choices to reduce its risk:

Exercise

Regular exercise has so many benefits for the body: it not only helps the body remain healthy and fit, it helps to lower cholesterol, and keeps blood pressure within more manageable ranges. It also keeps the body’s circulatory system healthy and helps it function efficiently. However busy your schedule may be, it is important to take at least two and half hours out of your week (that’s just half an hour five times a week) to prioritize exercise.

Healthy eating

Adopt a simple rule about eating – eat food that is as close to its natural state as possible. This means food that is minimally processed, with low amounts of salts, fats, sugars and artificial additives such as preservatives, artificial colors or sweeteners and so on. Make food choices that include healthy fats and lean protein as well as complex carbs. Keep portions small and eat a variety of different veggies, fruits, whole grains, oily fish and lean meats. Regular exercise and a healthy, balanced diet are effective in helping maintain a healthy weight, which is seen to be effective in preventing strokes.

fast-stroke-symptoms

Cutting out bad habits

Excessive alcohol intake, smoking or tobacco use in any of its forms and use of banned substances have negative implications on a person’s health, their social interactions & relationships and even professional life. With so many reasons to give up these habits, it is actually self destructive to continue. Women should have no more than a drink a day and men, no more than 2 drinks a day. Smoking and drug use should be cut out entirely. Since these are all addictive substances it is important to get help if you find that quitting on your own is difficult.

Control other health conditions

High blood pressure, diabetes and heart disease are known risk factors that increase your chances of having a stroke. Take proper prescribed medications and keep your body weight within healthy ranges to control these conditions and reduce stroke risk.

Lower stress levels

Researchers are uncovering more and more negative health implications of stress. There is evidence to show that stress can contribute to conditions such as heart disease and obesity. There is also the fact that stress can lead to unhealthy behaviors such as smoking, binge drinking, overeating and so on. So controlling stress can have several beneficial impacts, directly and indirectly.

You can help yourself control stress by making some adjustments to your life to include healthy habits. Prioritize sleep – adequate, restful sleep is known to lower stress and promote overall health and wellbeing. Develop coping mechanisms to deal with daily stressors. Take time out for exercise and practice just 10 to 15 minutes of meditation each day to reap significant stress lowering benefits. Making these small changes to your lifestyle could have far-reaching beneficial impacts.

 

About the Author:

Sarika Periwal writes family care, parenting and healthy living articles for online publications. She recommends considering the rehabilitation and after care facilities at Bria Health Services for the complete healing of your loved ones.

When Your Elderly Parents Don’t Want to Move

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Convincing your elderly parents that a change needs to occur with their current living situation is not always the easiest task. This is especially true when they’re strong-willed and independent or in other words, stubborn. Moving to an assisted living home is not a transition that’s always welcomed with open arms, but it’s a necessary one when you can no longer do simple daily tasks or function safely in your own home without help. So what do you do when your elderly parents don’t want to move out of their home?

The following are a few ways you can help your parents ease into the idea of moving out of their beloved home and into a place that will provide them with care and comfort, as well as peace of mind for the rest of the family.

 

Bring up the Subject Regularly in Conversations

If you feel that your parents will eventually need assistance with their day to day chores in the near future then make it a point to regularly bring up the topic in conversations. Doing so long before they start showing signs of struggles with their daily routine will get them more accustomed to the idea of assisted living even if they don’t completely agree with it right away.

This approach is far better than springing up the issue one day, out of the blue or right after an incident has occurred. Don’t wait till something happens to your parents to talk to them about their future and well-being. Be proactive and start right now.

 

Identifying their Need for the Move

One reason why some parents can be resistant to the thought of moving out of their home is because they feel like they don’t need to. In their eyes, they’re still the young, hard working, independent, capable individual they were 10+ years ago. But you and everyone else know that this isn’t the case. Help your parents realize the reality of their situation by identifying their needs. Gently and lovingly raise awareness on any health issues they may be currently experiencing, give examples of simple tasks that they have a hard time of completing, show them that they do in fact need assistance and that’s OK.

Most parents don’t want to burden their children with emotional, physical or financial issues which is why they sometimes shy away from asking for help and it could also be another reason for rejecting the move. Show your parents that you generally care for their well-being by letting them know your worries and concerns. You’ll not only lift the burden off their shoulders, but when you’re the one approaching them with these issues they’re more likely to be open to your suggestions and ideas.

 

Helping them Realize the Benefits

Assisted living homes are more than just old and sick people. Nowadays you’ll find communities that are just as lively as the jazz club next door. Many elders have become even more active upon moving into a home. Not only do they have several activities, programs and events to keep them stimulated and entertained, but they no longer have to worry about daily chores, running errands or medical needs. This gives them ample leisure time throughout the day to focus on things that matter most to them, like learning a new craft, engaging in their favorite hobby or just relaxing without a care in the world.

 

Create a Support Team with Family and Friends

Get everyone involved in the process, including siblings, aunts, uncles, and even close family friends. The more people you have supporting your elderly parent’s possible move, the more likely they will start to warm up to the idea if not completely agree with it. Have a meeting with your family and close friends and discuss all the issues and concerns each member may have. The sooner you get everyone on the same page, the better and the more encouraged and empowered your seniors will feel about their decision to move.

Even if you don’t think your parents will need to move into an assisted living community any time soon or that day is still years down the road, you can begin to make the process and transition easier now by implementing the tips above. The sooner you do so, the better the response and the easier the move will be for everyone.

 

Author Bio – This article is written by Mary Herald, a writer for SunshineRetirementLiving.com, a reputable and caring retirement community. To find out more about their independent retirement community in Chula Vista, click here.

 

Image courtesy of Ambro/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Physiotherapy Tips For Running Injuries

girl-running

Every year, over 36 million people take up running in the United States as a form of exercise and recreation.  Almost half of them will experience some sort of injury from their running.

Running can take a toll on your body, especially if you’re running over long distances.  What can make matters worse is if your running technique is poor and you have poor body alignment.

If you’re going to run, you should always warm up your body and muscles first before trying to stretch cold muscles.  You want to get blood flowing into the area first so it can warm up, letting you gently stretch and warm up that area.

Proper alignment is also important.  If your form is terrible, you’re bound to start getting aches and pains when you run.  James Rush of Spectrum Physiotherapy in Newmarket says they get dozens of patients each year with running injuries that could have been prevented with proper form.

Check out the infographic below that covers the most common types of running injuries and some tips on how to avoid or minimize your chances of getting an injury the next time you take off on your neighborhood jog.

running-injuires-infographic

 

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