About Kerrin Kuntzman

Kerrin Kuntzman

Kerrin is the office manager at Texas Spine & Wellness. She often blogs about alternative medical care and nutrition. She is an ardent supporter of chiropractic medicine and uses chiropractic treatment not only for herself, but for her pets as well!

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Are You Suffering with Joint Pain? Ease it with Collagen

Are your joints feeling a little stiff? Not moving with the easy fluidity you had in the past? Is it difficult to squat or run, or to simply toss a ball or pick up a child? You’re not alone. Studies indicate between 50 to 75 million people now suffer from painful swollen joints — and the number is increasing.

joint pain and collagen

It’s not that we don’t expect bouts with pain. Accidents and illness occur every day. It’s an obstacle course called ”Life.” Unfortunately, swollen joints are no longer unusual. And that kind of inflammation is associated with several types of disease: gout, fibromyalgia, lupus, and, of course, arthritis. In particular, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are two of the most damaging. An autoimmune disorder, rheumatoid arthritis (RA) inflames joints throughout the body. Osteoarthritis (OA) is specifically a physical condition resulting from the wear and tear on the joints. It’s literally a degenerative disease. Because everyone uses every joint every day, this has become the most common reason for swollen joints. It’s an aspect of aging that many can’t escape!

Texas Spine & Wellness understands joint pain treatment and is focused on helping clients achieve, if not a pain-free life, a manageable level that allows a more normal mobility. It can be done with a program of proper diet, exercise, and supplements. We recommend Great Lakes Collagen Hydrolysate because we’ve found it delivers the best results to ease joint pain and discomfort.

Let’s look more closely at joint pain and at collagen supplements when taken to  reduce inflammation.

How does arthritis attack the joints?

Some researchers suggest arthritis may result from a “confusion” that occurs in the immune system after the body has suffered an infection due to a bacteria or virus. The immune system suddenly begins to attack joints, an attack that can expand to other parts of the body. OA can flare up when an affected joint is injured or suffers some trauma. However, because RA is degenerative and associated with the immune system, only immune system changes can result in a flare-up.

As to why joints swell, there are two causes: the joint lining itself swells, or the amount of fluid in the joint increases. Swelling is a very active process. As white blood cells (also called inflammatory cells) and blood enter the joint, proteins are discharged into the soft tissues surrounding the area between the joints and the bones. Proteins are actually inflammatory molecules. Of course, that additional blood flow swells the joint and—doing what blood is intended to do—adds warmth. All those inflammatory materials increase the collection of fluids in and around the joint, and the swelling also increases. Initial swelling encourages more swelling. It’s like a self-fulfilling prophecy! The end result is damaged bone and cartilage.

How is life affected?

If you have, or have had, inflamed joints, you well know mornings are the worst time for stiffness. You’ve been in bed all night and when you try to bounce up out of bed—wow! You feel like a mannequin. If the stiffness lasts more than an hour, it’s likely inflammatory arthritis. Along with the stiffness is a dull ache you can’t shake, although, thankfully, not all stiffness is accompanied by pain. If you’re stiff after exercising, it’s more likely OA, which indicates the joints are beginning to fail. But you can also feel stiff after resting, such as when you sit after walking or sit just to relax after a long day. It takes some of the pleasure out of simple relaxation. An analogy often used to describe how stiffening joints feel, is to say the sensation is like gelatin setting, a process of gradual firming.

It’s an unpleasant condition for anyone, especially because it can affect any joint in your body: shoulders, elbows, wrists, hands and fingers, hips, knees, ankles, and feet. Even the jaw can be affected. It affects how you move, how you feel, and your mood. After all, how can you be upbeat when your mobility is limited and, in many cases, you ache as well?

Collagen: what is it and how can it help?

Great Lakes Collagen Hydrolysate
Collagen is a protein that makes up about a quarter of our body mass, which means It’s the most abundant protein within our bodies. It’s also the major component of our connective tissues, a part of the structure in our skin and bones, our hair and nails, and our tendons and ligaments. There’s a singular amino acid blend in collagen that contributes to joint health, muscle growth, and the glow that comes when we feel relatively healthy.

Nutritional supplements made from collagen are derived from animal materials such as beef, pork, or fish bones and skin. It’s processed to make digestion easier. All those amino acids of which it’s comprised are instrumental in building joint cartilage, and it’s believed to have  anti-inflammatory properties. By stimulating the production of joint collagen, Collagen Hydrolysate supplements can ease OA symptoms. And collagen is generally well tolerated, with no major side-effects.

Which brings us to Great Lakes Hydrolyzed Collagen protein powder or gelatin supplement and why Texas Spine & Wellness recommends it as your best selection to bring relief to swollen joints. Beef hydrolyzed collagen combines a unique assemblage of 20 amino acids, concentrated in high enough levels to not only promote bone healing, but to provide joint care beyond what other proteins have to offer. It’s designed with a low molecular weight so digestion is easy, and, because of the hydrolization, assimilation is fast, with better hydration in connective tissues. Enrichment of the body’s proteins begins within minutes after taking it.

There are many additional benefits from collagen. Nitrogen balance is one. Nitrogen is believed to be an anti-aging product that supports collagen loss and damage to cartilage that comes with aging. It’s good for all those parts mentioned above: skin, hair, and nails on the outside, and bones, tendons and ligaments on the inside.

We guarantee the quality of this product, which is produced under very strict sanitary conditions, meeting standards established by the U.S. Pharmacopeia. The National Formulary regulates the Pharmacopeia. Having been rigorously tested for pH, strength, moisture and viscosity, Great Lakes Collagen Hydrolysate can be immediately introduced into various recipes to provide that needed collagen boost

Don’t let stiff joints change your life!

Aching joints and stiffness are often unavoidable due to aging, illness, or injury. But it’s not a condition you have to live with. You do have choices!  A selective diet and the right exercise suited to your age and overall condition are the first steps toward healthier joints. The next step is a supplement created purposefully to attack the issue, such as Great Lakes Collagen Hydrolysate. If you would like to purchase a can for yourself you can purchase it here. The big step after that? Set up regular checkups with your primary doctor and chiropractor, and follow their advice for a healthy life style plan. As a chiropractor in Garland, TX , Dr. Mixon specializes in the treatment of joint pain.

Healthy joints are necessary for a comfortable but active life. Visit Texas Spine & Wellness. We want to help you achieve and maintain the healthy joints you were born with!

Exercise Safety – 5 Ways to Begin Moving Again

Has it been a while since you were able to exercise? Even with the best intentions, life can get in the way. Before you know it, it’s been months since you were able to flex your muscles and build up a sweat. Now you’re eager to get back into the groove—but guess what? Your body isn’t too happy about the prospect of having to work again! You might need tips for exercise safety.

Senior citizens practicing exercise safety
Consider what happens to your body when you don’t exercise. When they aren’t used beyond the requirement to simply breathe, lungs tend to lose their elasticity. Lack of exercise causes your blood vessels to shrink, meaning decreased blood volume and less ability to draw oxygen from the blood cells. When that happens, your heart works harder just to get oxygen to your muscles. There goes your heart rate!

Equally important is how inactivity can lead to joint pain.

But even if you’re anxious to get back into shape, the last thing you need is to strain muscles or tendons in the effort. That would throw you right back out of the exercise mode and be painful, to boot.

Our Garland Chiropractic Clinic is all about being healthy and pain-free, so we have some tips to help you with exercise safety and ways to achieve your “back on the treadmill” goal.

  • Before you start any exercise program, Consult with your Doctor to determine your health ‘base line.’ Be sure you don’t have any underlying conditions that exercise could exacerbate.
  • Keep your goals realistic. Don’t set yourself up for failure or disappointment by reaching for perfection. If you need to lose weight, go after the pounds a few at a time. Know your own body shape and accept that you might not end up like that model on a magazine cover. If you want to build muscle, strengthen yourself gradually and don’t focus on six-pack abs. The idea is to be slimmer, healthier, and energized.
  • Start Slowly! It took time to lose your physical edge; it’s going to take time to regain it. If you push yourself, you might stress parts of your body that aren’t ready for such attention. It’s OK to return to the same type of exercise you’re used to, but do so at a lower intensity. Intersperse your run with periods of walking. Break up aerobics with a few minutes of rest. If you do warm-ups, stretch them out so your body really has a change to loosen up. Same thing with cooling down. And keep the amount of time you engage in any exercise to a minimum until you’ve built up the strength and energy for longer periods.
  • Commit to a schedule. The easiest way to stick with a plan is to make it a habit. Select a time that works for you and try to keep it set aside strictly for that purpose.
  • Find an exercise buddy. You want exercise to be fun, so if you enjoy it more having a companion share the experience, then ask a friend to join you. It could make it easier to monitor yourself than if you do it alone. If you don’t have a human friend who can spare the time then bring along your dog if you’re running or walking.
  • Above all, be patient! Your body is adaptive, but don’t push it! And if you feel you have pushed it, ask your doctor to look you over to be sure you’re OK to keep exercising. He or she might recommend that you ease back, or they might recommend certain exercises that will help you get in shape without stressing your body.

Dr. Mixon and our staff at Texas Spine & Wellness know how everything connects in your body and can help you with exercise safety. We know common stress points and can help you avoid problems. Allow us to help you plan an exercise program that will enable you achieve your fitness goals without injury. Give us a call us at (972) 840-2520 and set up an appointment today.

Learning to Use the Healing Power of Music

Having studied the healing power of music for decades, scientists know it has a profound effect on the mind, body and emotions. Music has a way to move us that seems to go to our very core as living beings and can transcend borders, cultures and race.

Music can be highly therapeutic and healing. Stroke victims, for example, have recovered through intonation therapy when many other treatments have failed. Music triggers neurons in the brain in a way that few other therapies can, and its effectiveness as a healing tool should not be overlooked. Brain scans show that listening to harmonious music elevates activity in areas of the brain’s reward center triggering the release of dopamine,  a powerful brain chemical.

woman experiencing the healing power of music

From pain, depression, epilepsy to even more extreme conditions such as heart disease, music has been shown to be incredibly effective.

Patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease have been shown to respond to music therapy, as songs and tunes from their younger days bring up memories that were seemingly lost to the disease. Incredibly, some doctors have given their patients a daily ‘playlist’ of songs timed so that the patients remember to do certain activities at certain times. Imagine, for example, The Beatles’ ‘When I’m 64’ reminding you to take your medicine or Mozart’s’ ‘Sonata in G Minor’ when it’s time to head to the cafeteria for lunch.

In June of 2006, the Journal of Advanced Nursing published a study that showed a reduction in pain and depression among patients who listened to music on a daily basis. It’s not hard to imagine that someone would cheer up when listening to a great rock and roll tune or a good Polka. However it boggles the mind to learn that an actual corollary between listening to music and pain reduction was found. That’s downright incredible.

These are some of the most interesting reasons that music can do all of these things:

  • Music has a way of organizing time that all humans seem to understand
  • Music encourages us to move, and that movement is enjoyable.
  • Music creates strong memories and even stronger emotions, which can last for decades.
  • Music can be mesmerizing and stimulates many areas of the brain at once.

Indeed, the power of music goes well beyond the pleasure that it gives when we hear it. It has an intense effect on our thoughts and our passions.

If you’re looking for alternative and complimentary therapies, don’t underestimate the power of music to calm, and to heal. Why not give it a try? The next time you wake up feeling stiff and achy, turn on the radio, find a pleasing, melodious tune and let your mind relax. You just might find this simple technique will help you get the day started with less pain.

If you are looking for safe and effective ways to treat joint and back pain, our Garland chiropractor’s office offers a wide range of available therapies including physical rehab, therapeutic massage and chiropractic treatment. We also offer advanced treatment options for pain, including injections using all natural remedies.  If you would like more information, please contact our office, Texas Spine & Wellness, at (972) 840-2520.