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It’s cold outside! Do your joints hurt?

As you begin to wrap up in your winter woolies, you may notice that your joints are beginning to stiffen up with the cold weather. Stiffness, aches, and pains are often associated with changes in the weather, especially during the falling temperatures of winter. The idea of cold weather causing internal pain seems a bit far-fetched, but it’s not just your imagination. Read on to learn the whys and hows of weather-related joint pain and what you can do to help your body!

Why Does The Weather Affect Our Body?

Changes in the atmospheric pressure in winter can cause our tendons, muscles, and surrounding tissues to expand. When we are cold our body restricts how much blood it sends to our extremities, so that it can focus on supplying our vital organs, like the heart and lungs. This makes the soft tissues around the joints less pliable, so joints often begin to feel tight, stiff, and very uncomfortable. Those who suffer with joint pain often blame the cold weather for making their condition worse, when in fact, this is not the case. The change in barometric pressure, which happens when the weather outside is changing, is what actually causes your joint pain to worsen. On the contrary, high humidity often has a significant impact on the pain in your joints. This is usually caused from dehydration in the body. Either way, weather can greatly affect how our joints are feeling our bodies whether we like it or not.

Are Some People More Susceptible Than Others?

Everyone’s body reacts to fluctuating temperatures and pressure. Joint problems or pain can react badly to the drop in barometric pressure during the winter weather and what may be a dull ache during the summer months, can become a shooting pain during winter when the weather is damp and cold. People that have arthritis and those experiencing chronic pain are more vulnerable to feeling discomfort. As well, the drop in temperature can have a major effect on your mood. When you are feeling down, the perception of pain can also become magnified!

Cope With Joint Pain This Winter

No matter the cause, winter stiffness and achiness are something many people experience. In order to reduce some of the symptoms of stiff and sore joints during the winter months, it is important to make the best effort to act against the cold.

  1. Layer Up

Ease the shock of cold weather on your body by dressing in layers to stay warm, especially if you’re going to be outside. Bundling up in when it’s cold out can help to reduce the shock to your joints and muscles, so don’t forget your hat and scarf to keep yourself insulated.

  1. Exercise

Build up muscle and bone strength through exercise. This reduces pressure on your joints, so they are less prone to injury. Properly warming up before exercise and cooling down helps to decrease tightening in the muscles after exercising. Also, maintaining a healthy weight to decrease stress on your joints, especially your knees. The holidays can be a perfect excuse to put on some “winter weight,” but reducing joint pressure that’s caused by your own body weight is another way to potentially reduce pain levels this winter.

  1. Improve Your Diet

There are a few essential vitamins that help to keep our bones healthy and muscles functioning. Including food sources such as eggs, fatty fish, mushrooms, and milk all support the health and functioning of your muscles and bones. As well, increasing your intake of fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains can help.

  1. Stay Hydrated

In the colder weather, you might not drink as much water as you do during the summer, but it’s still important. Drinking water can help keep your joints lubricated, which in turn can help reduce your pain level

  1. Heat

Apply heating pads or taking warm water baths can with easing pain on tender areas. Heat helps relax your muscles and can be super effective when it is colder outside. Also, wearing compression garments or thermal agents may help.

Bust Your Winter Aches and Pains

Act against your achy joints now! This winter doesn’t have to be a pain. Try your best to follow these simple steps that may help to ease your aches and pains this year.

It’s cold outside! Do your joints hurt? 2019-01-04T09:30:29+00:00

Make Yourself Your Number One Priority In 2019

Can you believe that we are nearly at the finish line? 2019 is galloping towards us and we’re more than ready to take our first steps. Whether or not we believe in resolutions, this time of year inspires us all to reflect and figure out ways to improve ourselves. While there is nothing wrong with setting goals, the thought process that goes into our New Year’s resolutions does a disservice in that it doesn’t fully acknowledge the process you made previously. You don’t become a new person overnight. Your story carries over to the new year. Only this time, you’re working to bring to life a better version of yourself. Make yourself a priority in 2019 and remember these words… “New year, same me, but better.”

It is so easy to get bogged down in the craziness of everyday life and push your own needs aside. When you do this, not only do you suffer, but you are not at your best for everyone else around you. You will actually be a better individual if you put yourself first this upcoming year – so start doing these ten things!

  1. Listen To Your Body

You, and practically everyone else, probably don’t listen to your body like you should. Only by tuning in to how you feel each moment can you truly take care of yourself.

  1. Nourish Yourself

Most of us are not nearly mindful enough about what we are putting into our bodies, whether that be food, water, beverages, or what have you. There is a direct connection between the way you feel and what you are ingesting. Pay attention to how you feel and take care of yourself.

  1. Get Your Rest

If you need rest, then rest. It is tempting to push yourself – we all want to be superheroes these days, and society tells us that’s the way to go. Unfortunately, that’s not the real story. If you can make yourself your first priority, that means that sometimes you allow yourself a much need break.

  1. Be Selfish

Being selfish isn’t a bad thing. Don’t push aside your needs for the needs of others. This has such a negative connotation, but don’t be afraid of owning your needs and making sure that you meet them! This is the only way you can truly put yourself first and prioritize your own happiness.

  1. Get Moving

Do. Not. Make. Excuses. Not. To. Exercise. If you need physical activity, make time for yourself and schedule it! This is a huge issue today – no one ever think that their physical health should be prioritized over the other things they have to do. When you put yourself first, you will make time for yourself and realize that your health comes first.

  1. Reflect

Reflect on what you do. The same goes for actions. Think before you do things. This is a great way to learn and understand more about yourself and what you need and want. You can’t prioritize yourself if you don’t understand yourself.

  1. Know Your Limits

It’s okay to have boundaries! It’s actually really healthy believe it or not. Don’t overwork yourself, overshare yourself with others, or exhaust yourself trying to make every else happy. It’s not worth it.

  1. Ask For What You Want and Need

You’d be surprised what you can achieve simply by being honest, direct, and open. It never hurts to ask, and sometimes you might actually get what you want by doing so.

  1. Believe In Yourself

Easier said than done, we know. You can start by making it a priority to work on getting to a place where you truly do believe in yourself. Every little step in the right direction helps!

  1. Trust Your Instincts

They’re there for a reason. If your gut tells you that something isn’t right for you, then take a step back to listen and observe. If you disregard your own instincts, you are not making yourself a priority!

Make 2019 Your Best Year Yet

As 2019 picks up steam, and it will quickly, we encourage you to think about ways you can put yourself at the top of your resolutions list. In fact, go ahead and erase everything else. It doesn’t matter. Where you develop a “You, first” practice, you’ll be able to more truthfully participate in life and the way you want to live it.

Stay tuned for more on the best ways to nourish your body, tips and tricks, recipes, and so much more. We’ll be participating in this journey alongside you, and we can’t wait to share what we learn. We can’t imagine a better way to start the year, and we wish you and your loved ones another year full of health and happiness.

Make Yourself Your Number One Priority In 2019 2018-12-31T12:09:15+00:00

Your Journey To Becoming A Better You

When you carry around a bit more weight that what is recommended, you are not only putting unnecessary stress on your body, but you are also putting your health at risk. Sometimes, it takes a life-altering experience for an overweight person to take action about their health. However, this doesn’t have to be the case. Losing weight should be a conscious and consistent effort for it to be effective. Remember, shedding a few extra pounds does not only unburden you, but it also gives you more energy and confidence in pursuing everything that your heart desires. So, instead of complaining about how tired you are, or wishing you could find beautiful clothes that fit you, why not take action now? Don’t put it off for another week, or after the holiday season. When it comes to your health and feeling good, it’s never to late to start.

Why Should I Take Action Now?

  1. Increase Body Positivity

Sweating it out, whether in the gym, at home, or at the park, leads to an increase in the happy hormones in your body. This includes serotonin, which is an important mood-enhancing neurotransmitter that is naturally produced when you exercise. Another positive neurochemical that is released when you are getting active is dopamine, which is the hormone that makes you feel good whenever you achieve something.

  1. Boost Your Mood

When you don’t feel good about yourself, there’s a big chance that you’ll feel less than good about everything in general. Your outlook on life turns negative. However, losing a few extra pounds can be the solution. The effects that physical activity have on your mood should not be questioned.

  1. Increase Energy

Doing yoga, going for a running, or lifting weights at the gym support the production of endorphins in your body. These neurochemical changes trigger positive feelings, often referred to as the “runner’s high”. You push yourself to work harder as you have an increase in energy. This also means that your workout sessions will feel more comfortable and more fun. And as you progress, you will start to feel better about yourself, which will motivate you even more.

  1. Become Healthier

There are many health conditions that can be developed if you are not active and taking care of your body. Your blood pressure can increase, cholesterol levels grow, develop high blood sugar, and even excess fat lingering in certain areas. Sweating it out and engaging in physical activities can help to support your health, and reduce any risks you might be facing.

  1. More Fertile

If you are trying to get pregnant, you could face a potential problem. Women who are overweight have a lower overall infertility rate and a higher rate of miscarriage. Similarly, men who weigh more than their BMI (Body Mass Index) have a lower concentration of sperm which lowers their chances of impregnating their partners.

  1. Feel Younger

Because you start to feel more energetic, you will begin to feel much younger and full of life. As a result, not only will you feel younger, but you will also look more youthful too!

Simple Changes That Will Help You On Your Journey

If you’ve got an extra ten pounds on your frame thanks to college, an active social life, or your nine to five, you might think that losing that weight will be simple. However, this is not the case. People who want to lose weight have likely developed poor eating habits, and it clear what they need to do in order to make a change. On the other hand, if you’re already pretty healthy in general, the shifts you’d have to make in order to reach your target weight are not as apparent. Use these tips and tricks to get started:

  1. Use Your Hands to Measure Portion Size

If your portion size is slightly out of line, then the calories you are consuming will follow. It’s so easy to go overboard don serving sizes but measuring everything you eat can also make you go crazy. A good way to determine the right amount if to rely on your hands as your guide. Aim for two handfuls of veggies, one fistful of whole-grain carbohydrates, a palm full of lean protein, and a slight drizzle of plant-based fat with every meal.

  1. Space Out Your Meals

You might be thinking that going through the day eating a little bit here and there, and then devouring all of your calories in the evening can help to lose those extra pounds. Did you know that the timing of food intake can impact the success of your weight loss journey? Eating early in the day stars firing up your metabolism, so that it can function steadily throughout your day. Eating late at night will give your metabolism a few hours to kick in before you go to sleep.

  1. Write Everything Down

It may feel as if you’ve been making all the right choices but sneaking tings could be adding to your daily caloric intake. To find out what they are, try tracking your food intake, and then analyze the results to see where the extra calories are hiding. This can help you see where you can make further changes.

  1. Get enough rest

Something as simple as lack of sleep might be the source of your weight gain. When you’re lacking sleep, you become less alert at making healthy decision. Lack of sleeps lead to cravings of a carb-heavy breakfast, and in the evening, you’ll feel too tired to cook. However, if you’re getting an adequate amount of rest, you’ll be better equipped to make healthy, lower-calorie, food choices throughout the day and have unbounding energy for your workouts too!

Start Your Journey Now

Making a lifestyle change takes dedication and determination. There’s not shortcut to this journey, even though you’ve been told over and over how easy it is – just take this pill, follow that diet, or buy this piece of equipment, and all of your problems will be solved. This is your journey, and you can start not. It’s ok to not be perfect every day. On the good days, you’ll eat all your fruits and veggies, say no to that pizza, and do your workout even though you are tired. On the bad days, you’ll wake up late, forget to bring your lunch, have an extra piece of pie at your holiday party, or skip your workout. Both the good and the bad days will happen. This trick is to never give up, even when you feel like you are not seeing any results. You are simply a person trying his or her best to make good decisions and live a happier and healthier lifestyle.

Your Journey To Becoming A Better You 2018-12-22T17:05:19+00:00

Don’t Let Pain Stop You From Living Your Life

How Diet and Exercise Can Ease Your Pain

An ailment that affects your joints affects much more than just your mobility. When you can’t get around without constantly feeling pain, you may experience emotional distress along with physical symptoms. While you might already take medications to prevent joint pain, did you know that you can get relief with proper nutrition and exercise too?

Common Causes of Joint Pain

Pain in the joints can be caused by several factors. The main culprit is inflammation, which can occur for multiple reasons.

  • Arthritis

Arthritis is the most common cause of pain in and around the joints, and the condition is a collective name for more than 100 joint diseases. More than 53 million Americans have some kind of arthritis.

Possible symptoms of arthritis include:

  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased range of motion

Much of the pain from arthritis is caused by inflammation. Arthritis sufferers can experience relief by eating foods that diminish inflammation and staying away from foods that trigger pain.

  • Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia comes in a close second to arthritis as a cause for painful joints. It is often misdiagnosed, and many people don’t know that they have the disorder.

The most common symptoms of fibromyalgia are:

  • Muscle aches
  • Joint pain
  • Fatigue

A healthy lifestyle, stress management, and exercise play a major role in controlling symptoms. People with arthritis are at an increased risk of developing fibromyalgia. These individuals should take extra consideration when it comes to eating the right foods.

  • Inflammation of other origin

Achy joints can also be caused by an injury that affects the soft tissue surrounding the area. If you have an injury, maintaining a healthy weight and reducing inflammation can help you heal.

How Your Diet Can Reduce Joint Pain

Although diet is not a magic cure for pain, it can strengthen your immunity, build up your bones, and fight inflammation. Certain foods can also make symptoms worse.

  • Fish

Fatty fish are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to lower levels of compounds that are related to inflammation. Eating fish may actually help to reduce morning joint stiffness, the number of aching joints, and the intensity of the pain – so much so that some may be able to cut back on pain relieving medication! Fish is also high in vitamin D. Sufficient vitamin D levels may play a role in the severity of the symptoms of fibromyalgia and arthritis.

Other foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids are:

  1. Walnuts
  2. Chia seeds
  3. Flaxseeds
  4. Hemp seeds
  5. Egg yolks
  • Garlic

Garlic is beneficial for your overall health. It can also decrease pain experienced in the joints as garlic can lower inflammatory markers that are associated with arthritis.

  • Berries

Berries are packed full of antioxidant compounds called anthocyanins. Quercetin, another compound found in berries, can obstruct some inflammatory processes that are linked with arthritis.

  • Ginger

Ginger extract can help with the stiffness you feel when you get up in the morning. Its pain-relieving effects can be just as strong as non-prescription pain relievers. This may be due to its ability to block inflammation-producing substances in the body. Ginger can be consumed fresh, dried, or as a supplement.

Simple Exercises for Achy Joints

Staying active when you’re feeling pain can be challenging. Achy joints can make many types of exercise feel agonizing. However, exercising can help maintain flexibility, reduce pain, and fight fatigue. Warming up, doing a variety of different exercises, taking time to stretch, and using props to support your body can help you get your body moving and avoid injury.

  • Walking

Walking is gentle and can be done anywhere. It allows you to use your body’s resistance to burn calories without impacting the joints excessively. Walking will help you control your weight, which will also relieve pressure from your joints.

  • Strength Training

Strong muscles can protect your joints. Implementing a weight-training regimen can help you maintain the strength that you already have and further increase muscle tissue and strength.

  • Body Awareness Exercises

Gentle yoga or tai chi exercises can help you create a mind-body connection that can help you manage a condition that causes pain in the joints. These types of exercises improve balance, coordination, and posture. Improving flexibility through yoga will loosen the connective tissues around muscles and joints and increase the range of motion which will help to relieve joint pain and stiffness.

Don’t Let Pain Stop You From Living The Life You Want!

Struggling with pain of any kind usually keeps you from doing the things that you want to do. However, it doesn’t have to be that way! Start relieving your pain by focusing on your nutrition and exercise habits. Eating foods that fight inflammation can significantly reduce your pain levels. Keeping your body moving with appropriate exercise can also help you maintain mobility, flexibility, and strength. Improving your diet and exercise habits will have you feeling better in no time!

Don’t Let Pain Stop You From Living Your Life 2018-08-30T09:48:34+00:00