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Summertime – Celebrate the Sunshine with a Healthy Backyard BBQ

Summertime is a time for friends and families to get together to celebrate friendship and the great outdoors. Whether enjoying a weekend camping or a backyard barbecue, food is usually the focus of the day. And it’s often a time when we feel justified in stuffing ourselves with our favorite great-tasting treats.

burger-and-hot-dogsWhy shouldn’t we watch the kids swim while chomping on a juicy hamburger piled with cheese, or deep-fried chicken wrapped in a thick, crispy batter?

Hot dogs buried in chili? Corn-on-the-cob bathed in butter and salt? Chips and dips? French fries? Potato salad?

In the moment, this delectable food feels (and tastes) like a dream come true. But by the next morning we may regret our impulsive choices. A day of indulgence has consequences, more so if you have health issues.

What’s So Bad About Those Nutrient-Sinful Foods?

  • Too much sodium in commercially prepared hot dogs can add to high blood pressure concerns and heart disease.
  • Hamburger meat? Surprisingly, there are about 16 grams of fat and 230 calories in the average ground beef patty. By topping it with high-calorie cheese, fried onions, sugary ketchup or fatty mayonnaise we add more calories to the total. And a typical Texas-sized hamburger patty is often large enough to feed two people!
  • Pasta, macaroni, and potato salads are laden with fats and simple carbohydrates
  • Hamburger and hot-dog buns are usually made from white bread, are highly processed and a generally stripped of nutrient value.

Healthy Food Choices That Still leave You Satisfied

It is possible to enjoy a backyard barbecue while still eating healthy flavorful foods.

To keep your carbohydrate consumption in a healthy range, select foods suggested in the Primal diet and/or the Mediterranean diet.

The Primal diet emphasizes eating foods that are as close to their natural state as you can find them. Specifically, foods that were eaten before the Industrial Revolution. That means omitting grains, beans, lentils, soy and peanuts, alcohol, sugar, processed foods, and refined vegetable oils in your diet.

So, what’s left? Many healthy food choices—every kind of fruit and vegetable, meats, fish, eggs, nuts (other than peanuts), seeds, healthy fats, and dairy products, both raw and fermented, including raw cheese. Sweeteners should be natural, such as raw honey and pure maple syrup.

Sound too strict? Then consider the Mediterranean way of eating.

The Mediterranean diet isn’t based on a single diet plan, but it does focus on some of the same foods as the Primal diet, including fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, fish and meat. However, the Mediterranean diet is strong on some items not included in the Primal diet, meaning that whole-grain breads, beans, and dairy are important foods on the menu. In addition, olive oil, olives, yogurt and eggs in small portions, wine and potatoes are all considered essential. And they all sound pretty tasty.

To Boost the Nutritional Content of Your Barbecue, Be Creative!

grilled vegetablesInstead of a hot dog in your whole-grain bun, try a marinated chicken tender, or chicken sausage. Grilled shrimp is another tasty option. If only a hot dog will do, replace ketchup and cheese with onions and chopped veggies like avocado, jalapeños, or cabbage. Here are a few more ideas:

  • For hamburgers, eat moderate portion sizes. For a Primal hamburger, opt for ground beef from grass-fed, free-range cattle, if possible. To add a flavor of the Mediterranean, season your ground lamb or beef with oregano, fresh rosemary, a generous amount of feta cheese, and a splash of lemon zest. Spread a thick kalamata olive paste on the buns for a flavorful change of pace. Ditch the grains although by using topping your burger with tomato halves, large Portobello mushroom caps, or by wrapping the fixings inside a swath of lettuce! Add a small amount of raw cheese, avocados, onions, mushrooms, and olive oil or vinaigrette.
  • When barbecuing don’t use a sauce with high fructose corn syrup, sugar or ingredients like caramel color, food starch or preservatives. Google recipes for sauces using Worcestershire, tomato paste, tamarin sauce or even molasses. Or—check out a nice Primal barbecue sauce.
  • Stick to salads made of fruits and vegetables, like carrots with radishes or raisins, or avocados with grapefruit or bacon. Stuff a bell pepper with onions, tomatoes, pickle bits, celery and crunchy bacon and bind them with a homemade mayo. Try some delicious recipes like Kale Chopped Salad with Maple-Almond Vinaigrette, California Cobb Salad with Tarragon Vinaigrette, or very healthy Almond Salmon Salad with Honey-Apple Cider Vinaigrette. A Mediterranean Grain Salad would be great! Or any other Mediterranean salad creation!
  • Grill corn and dab with chipotle butter to make your metabolism smile. For additional flavor, add lime. With that much flavor you might be able to skip the salt. As for the potato, trying baking it. You can up your daily vegetable intake by topping your potato with asparagus, broccoli, sprinkles of meat, and good fresh herbs.
  • Eat 100% whole grain bread in moderation. Dip it in herb flavored olive oil for a snack, or top with a Mediterranean spread.
  • Skip the chips. Crunchy vegetables pair nicely with dips made out of onions or clams, spinach or artichokes, or even beans or salsa.
  • Fruit is always an excellent dessert. Trying skewering cubes of mixed fruit on bamboo skewer for a more dramatic flair.. However if you want a slight taste of sinful, there are both primal desserts and Mediterranean desserts to satisfy your sweet-tooth without putting your body on a sugar overload.

Be happy, eat healthy and enjoy the summer… Autumn is just a couple of months away!

Dr. Mixon and his team of medical professionals is available to help you improve your health with a full complement of services. In addition to our lab-based nutrition programs, we offer ANS (Autonomic Nervous System) testing, to help you assess your current state of health, along with treatment for neck, back and joint pain.

Please contact us if you would like more information about our Garland, TX chiropractic clinic.

Supplements to Reduce Fibromyalgia Symptoms Naturally

Fibromyalgia is a syndrome most people know little about, unless you or someone you’re close to has it. The description of the disorder characterizes its nature: chronic and pervasive musculoskeletal pain, exhaustion, and widespread sensitivity in localized areas of your body. It’s a set of symptoms that, once they occur together, either signify the disease is present, or indicate there’s a good chance of developing it.

fibromyalgia symptomsPeople suffering from fibromyalgia symptoms and chronic pain are desperate for relief. They usually end up trying surgery, physical therapy, and/or pain medications. And often they still say, “I hurt all over!”

Let’s learn more about this unpleasant condition and natural ways to treat fibromyalgia

What Causes Fibromyalgia?

There are a lot of theories as to the causes of this disorder, but the specific cause has yet to be identified. Here are a few of the educated theories:

  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Stress, either physical or mental or both
  • Low levels of serotonin
  • Sudden brain or spinal cord trauma
  • Sleep disorders
  • Surgery
  • Poor physical condition

Researchers agree fibromyalgia results from a combination of issues rather than a single issue. They also agree it’s a disorder of the nervous system, most likely in some aspect of the system’s central processing activities. The list above may actually be factors that trigger or intensify a dysfunction already present in your nervous system.

Confused? You’re not alone. After osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia is the most common musculoskeletal condition, but it’s still often misdiagnosed. This happens because there are so many symptoms! When they occur together, they imply a disorder, but don’t necessarily confirm it.

Additional Common Fibromyalgia Symptoms

  •  Memory and concentration difficulties
  •  Headaches
  •  Numbness and tingling in limbs
  •  Frequent or painful urination
  •  Irritable bowel syndrome
  •  Stiffness in the morning

It’s easy to see why sufferers often become depressed or anxious.

Interesting Facts

  • Women are 10 times more likely than men to be affected by fibromyalgia, which means 75 to 90% of those impacted are female.
  • Most of the people affected are between 25 and 60 years of age.
  • Although it hasn’t been proven, there’s a theory that fibromyalgia could be genetic, passed from mother to daughter.
  • Due to discomfort, insomnia can result, and that can decrease your body’s capacity to repair damaged tissues.
  • Other than gender, fibromyalgia isn’t a selective syndrome. Worldwide, it affects people equally across ethnic, financial, and medical communities.
  • In spite of the gender predilection, fibromyalgia can also affect men and children.

Help With Handling the Discomfort of Fibromyalgia

Physical Help

Alternative therapies are useful to help manage those uncomfortable fibromyalgia symptoms. According to WebMD “therapeutic massage manipulates the muscles and soft tissues of the body and helps ease deep muscle pain. It also helps relieve pain of tender points, muscles spasms, and tense muscles.”

diagram of fibromyagia symptomsRecommendations by the American Pain Society include “moderately intense aerobic exercise at least two or three times a week. They also endorse clinician-assisted treatments, such as hypnosis, acupuncture, therapeutic massage, and chiropractic manipulation for pain relief.”

Our Garland Chiropractic Clinic’s team of exercise physiologists and licensed massage therapists are qualified to help you with a regimen of focused exercise and therapeutic massage. Along with physical rehab department, Dr. Mixon, our chiropractor, is an expert at treating joint pain through chiropractic manipulation.

Help Through Nutritional Supplements

Magnesium is active in numerous processes. It helps generate nerve signaling, muscle contractions, and healthy bones, and aids in adjusting cholesterol levels released into the blood stream. Also very important, magnesium is an enzyme co-factor and regulates the biochemical reactions of about 350 enzymes. Because of all these important functions, a magnesium deficiency can cause many of the symptoms a fibromyalgia sufferer experiences.

One thing fibromyalgia patients have in common is having a period of experienced extreme stress or a prolonged period of lower stress situations. Stressful situations lead to magnesium deficiencies.

Magnesium can help to combat stress as it is a neurologic system relaxant that alleviates stress and allows you to relax. Every study in which magnesium has been applied has resulted in improvements in the fatigue and pain connected with fibromyalgia.

Malic acid helps ease muscle and tissue pain caused by hypoxia (inadequate oxygen). It also helps the body generate energy more efficiently and it enhances the stamina of our cells.

As a team, Magnesium and Malic acid work together to relieve pain, produce energy, and stabilize moods; beneficial qualities for people with fibromyalgia. Some people taking these nutrients together have noticed symptom improvement within 48 hours; however, for some it may take four to six weeks.

Obviously, Magnesium and Malic acid are essential nutrients for our health. While a relatively large amount of Malic acid is produced and broken down in the human body daily, our bodies can’t produce magnesium. Therefore it’s critical to get magnesium through our diet and/or a daily supplement. According to the Nutritional Magnesium up to 80% of U.S. residents are deficient in magnesium. That’s why we often recommend a supplement for this critical supplement.

For fibromyalgia patients, taking these two nutrients together in a supplement, could deliver a knock-out punch for troublesome symptoms. Here’s one product that we like.

Curcumin is the primary component of turmeric, which makes the spice a rich yellow. It strongly supports the mechanisms in the body that modulate inflammatory responses. In fact, if the dose is high enough, this powerful nutrient can reset anti-inflammatory behavior at the cellular level. Fibromyalgia symptoms of morning stiffness and swelling of joints often improve when curcumin supplements are used.

Remember: when the appropriate nutrients are introduced and nutritional deficiencies are reversed, there’s a positive effect on the pain of fibromyalgia and the anxiety and depression it causes. In this case, supplements of Magnesium combined with Malic acid and Curcumin are an excellent approach to help reduce the impact of fibromyalgia.

If you would like to buy these supplements to try them for yourself, they can be found at our office, or on our nutritional website by following the links below.

Inflavanoid by Metagenics

Mag Malic by Science Based Nutrition

If you would like more information about Garland chiropractor, Dr. James Mixon, and the ways he and his team of health care professionals can help you feel better, please contact us at (972) 840-2520. Our combination of nutritional medical, chiropractic care and exercise rehab has helped thousands of patients.

Pregnancy, Chiropractic and Nutrition – One Woman’s Story

When Sarah found out she was pregnant, she knew she wanted to make changes in her health. It was just weeks into her pregnancy and her back was already hurting. And as a former smoker, she was concerned about the impact that cigarettes might have had upon her body.

Over the years, Sarah had relied on chiropractic treatment to take care her back pain, but now she wan’t sure if the combination of pregnancy and chiropractic was a good idea. Since Sarah’s entire family had been to Dr. Mixon for chiropractic care, she knew she could trust him to offer sound, honest advice.

Pregnancy and chiropractic treatment

Dr. Mixon explained that pregnancy and chiropractic treatment can make a world of difference in a woman’s comfort levels while pregnant. Treatment is perfectly safe during pregnancy even in the earliest weeks. In fact, chiropractic treatments can improve alignment in the spine and pelvis making the birthing process.

Dr. Mixon also explained that the physical rehab offered by their Garland chiropractic clinic would help strengthen her muscles and improve her range of motion. He also said she could add in therapeutic massage after her first 12 weeks.

Massage is known to help relieve sciatica pain in pregnant women. Massage can also help:

  • Reduce edema
  • Relieve anxiety and tension
  • Improve oxygenation in the muscles and soft tissues
  • Ease joint pain
  • Improve circulation

Once Sarah understood the safety of treatment, she began to visit the clinic each week. Soon the pain was gone. But Sarah received another surprising benefit from her visits to Texas Spine & Wellness.

The doctor recommended the professional grade prenatal vitamins they stocked in the office. Although she was already taking a prenatal vitamin, she was willing to give the new brand a try. She says that’s when everything changed.

A new prenatal vitamin changed Sarah’s health and energy

“Before I took the prenatal vitamins from Frontrunners Health, my hair used to come out in handfuls. I was really worried.” says Medders. “But after beginning Baby’s Best Start, I stopped losing my hair and it started looking thicker and shinier. People kept asking me about my shampoo, but I had to explain that my hair was different because of my prenatal vitamins. Even better than the changes in my hair was the amount of energy I had.”

Now, six months after the birth of her son, Sara says, I really believe the combination of vitamins and chiropractic treatment was the reason my baby, Obee, was born so healthy.”

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Prenatal vitamins with a difference

Kerrin Kuntzman, cofounder of Frontrunners Health explains, “The ingredients in our professional grade prenatal vitamins are different from the drugstore brands. Our formulation is designed to supply nutrients in their most natural and bioavailable forms. That’s why we use folate vs. the synthetic form of the vitamin, folic acid.

Folate is the vitamin that is so vital in preventing neural tube defects in a developing baby. We also use a methylated form of vitamin B-12, which is particularly important to support energy levels. Lutein is added for baby’s eye and brain development.”

The vitamin provides other key nutrients as well. Biotin, a costly supplement that supports healthy hair and nail growth, is often omitted from lesser quality supplements because of its high cost, whereas Baby’s Best Start provides 100% of the RDA. The vitamins are also free of artificial colors, flavorings or additives. In addition, its vegetarian formula is safe for those following a gluten-free diet.

“If an expectant mother wants to take the best possible prenatal vitamin, they should consider trying Baby’s Best Start. It’s great for use both before and after pregnancy.” Dr. Mixon adds.

Medders is a believer in both chiropractic care during pregnancy and her prenatal vitamins, “Even though I’ve had my baby, I still schedule monthly appointments with Dr. Mixon. And I still take my prenatal vitamins because I feel so much better and have a lot more energy. And believe me, I need plenty of energy to take care of a six month old baby boy who requires every minute of my time!”

In addition, to being great for pregnancy, Baby’s Best Start prenatals are wonderful for women who are breast feeding. They’re great hair and nail vitamins too! If you’d like to try a bottle of Frontrunner’s prenatal vitamins for yourself, you can take advantage of a $5.00 discount coupon code on your initial order. Just enter the code B8HWFE82 upon checkout. You can find the vitamins through the Texas Spine & Wellness office, the Frontrunners Health Solutions website or at Amazon.