May 31, 2019 is National Heat Awareness Day or #NoFryDay.
Heat Illnesses Can be Fatal – Would You Know What to Do?
Did you know your body is constantly in a struggle to disperse the heat it produces? Most of the time, you’re hardly aware of it – unless your body is exposed to more heat than it can handle. In 2017, 87 people died in the U.S. from exposure to excessive heat, according to Injury Facts, the annual statistical report on unintentional injuries produced by the National Safety Council. Heat-related illnesses can escalate rapidly, leading to delirium, organ damage and even death.
There are several heat-related illnesses, including heatstroke (the most severe), heat exhaustion and heat cramps. Those most at risk include:
- Infants and young children
- Elderly people
- Individuals with heart or circulatory problems or other long-term illness
- People who work outdoors
- Athletes and people who like to exercise – especially beginners
- Individuals taking medications that alter sweat production
- Alcoholics and drug abusers
- Heat Stroke
Seek medical help immediately if someone is suffering from heat stroke. Signs and symptoms include flushed skin that is very hot to the touch; rapid breathing; headache, dizziness, confusion or irrational behavior; and convulsions or unresponsiveness. The victim also will likely have stopped sweating. Do not hesitate to take action:
- Call 911 immediately
- Move the victim to a cool place
- Remove outer clothing
- Immediately cool the victim with any means at hand, preferably by immersing up to the neck in cold water (with the help of a second rescuer)
- If immersion in cold water is not possible, place the victim in a cold shower or move to a cool area and cover as much of the body as possible with cold, wet towels
- Do not try to force the victim to drink liquids
- Monitor the victim’s breathing and be ready to give CPR if needed
When the body loses an excessive amount of salt and water, heat exhaustion can set in. People who work outdoors and athletes are particularly susceptible. Symptoms are similar to those of the flu and can include severe thirst, fatigue, headache, nausea, vomiting and, sometimes, diarrhea. Other symptoms include profuse sweating, clammy or pale skin, dizziness, rapid pulse and normal or slightly elevated body temperature. Uncontrolled heat exhaustion can evolve into heatstroke, so make sure to treat the victim quickly.
- Move them to a shaded or air-conditioned area
- Give them water or other cool, nonalcoholic beverages
- Apply wet towels or having them take a cool shower
Heat cramps are muscle spasms that usually affect the legs or abdominal muscles, often after physical activity. Excessive sweating reduces salt levels in the body, which can result in heat cramps.
Workers or athletes with pain or spasms in the abdomen, arms or legs should not return to work for a few hours. Instead:
- Sit or lie down in the shade
- Drink cool water or a sports drink
- Stretch affected muscles
- Seek medical attention if you have heart problems or if the cramps don’t get better in an hour
The best way to avoid a heat-related illness is to limit exposure outdoors during hot days. Air conditioning is the best way to cool off, according to the CDC. Also:
- Drink more liquid than you think you need and avoid alcohol
- Wear loose, lightweight clothing and a hat
- Replace salt lost from sweating by drinking fruit juice or sports drinks
- Avoid spending time outdoors during the hottest part of the day, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- Wear sunscreen; sunburn affects the body’s ability to cool itself
- Pace yourself when you run or otherwise exert your body
If you have questions or concerns about heat exhaustion, please consult your primary care physician. If you have questions about how to keep your body hydrated during the summer, schedule a nutrition consultation with our Registered Dietitian, Lisa James by filling out the form below!
This blog was originally published by the National Safety Council on www.nsc.org.
The best way to beat dehydration is to drink before you get thirsty. But did you know that some beverages are better than others at preventing dehydration?
What does water do for the body?
Warm weather brings with it thoughts of cool ocean breezes, napping at our Escape Resort and sipping a tall glass of lemonade. Now hold on to the mental image of that lemonade because summer is also a time to be wary of dehydration: the lack of sufficient water in the body.
Water is important to the body at all times, but especially in warm weather. It keeps the body from overheating. When you exercise, your muscles generate heat. To keep from burning up, your body needs to get rid of that heat. The main way the body discards heat in warm weather is through sweat. As sweat evaporates, it cools the tissues beneath. Lots of sweating reduces the body’s water level and this loss of fluid affects normal bodily functions.
How to avoid dehydration
According to the American College of Sports Medicine, to avoid dehydration, active people should drink at least 16- 20 ounces of fluid one to two hours before an outdoor activity. After that, you should consume 6 to 12 ounces of fluid every 10 to 15 minutes that you are outside. When you are finished with the activity, you should drink more. How much more? To replace what you have lost: at least another 16 to 24 ounces (2- 3 cups).
One way to make sure you are properly hydrated is to check your urine. If it’s clear, pale or straw-colored, it’s OK. If it’s darker than that, keep drinking!
Beverages: some hydrate, others dehydrate…
Some beverages are better than others at preventing dehydration. Water is all you need if you are planning to be active in a low or moderate intensity activity, such as walking, for only an hour or less. If you plan to be exercising longer than that, or if you anticipate being out in the sun for more than a few hours, you may want to hydrate with some kind of sports drink. These replace not only fluid, but also chemicals like sodium and potassium, which are lost through perspiration. Too much or too little sodium and potassium in the body can cause trouble. Muscle cramping may be due to a deficiency of electrolytes, such as sodium and potassium.
Alcoholic and caffeinated beverages, such as coffee, teas and colas are not recommended for optimal hydration. These fluids tend to pull water from the body and promote dehydration. Fruit juice and fruit drinks may have too many carbohydrates, too little sodium, and may upset the stomach. If you’re going to drink fruit juices while exercising, you may try diluting them with 50% fruit juice and 50% water first.
Adequate hydration will keep your summer activities safer and much more enjoyable. If you need to increase your fluid intake, keep an extra pitcher of water with fresh lemons, limes, or cucumber in the refrigerator.
What are some additional benefits of keeping hydrated?
- It lubricates the joints. Cartilage, found in joints and the disks of the spine, contains around 80 percent water. Long-term dehydration can reduce the joints’ shock-absorbing ability, leading to joint pain.
- It forms saliva and mucus. Saliva helps us digest our food and keeps the mouth, nose, and eyes moist. This prevents friction and damage. Drinking water also keeps the mouth clean. Consumed instead of sweetened beverages, it can also reduce tooth decay.
- It delivers oxygen throughout the body. Blood is more than 90 percent water, and blood carries oxygen to different parts of the body.
- It boosts skin health and beauty. With dehydration, the skin can become more vulnerable to skin disorders and premature wrinkling.
- It cushions the brain, spinal cord, and other sensitive tissues. Dehydration can affect brain structure and function. It is also involved in the production of hormones and neurotransmitters.
- It regulates body temperature. Water that is stored in the middle layers of the skin comes to the skin’s surface as sweat when the body heats up. As it evaporates, it cools the body. In sport.
- The digestive system depends on it. The bowel needs water to work properly. Dehydration can lead to digestive problems, constipation, and an overly acidic stomach.
- It helps to maintain blood pressure. A lack of water can cause blood to become thicker, increasing blood pressure.
- The airways need it. When dehydrated, airways are restricted by the body in an effort to minimize water loss. This can make asthma and allergies worse.
- It makes minerals and nutrients accessible. These dissolve in water, which makes it possible for them to reach different parts of the body.
- It prevents kidney damage. The kidneys regulate fluid in the body. Insufficient water can lead to kidney stones and other problems.
- It boosts performance during exercise. Dehydration during exercise may hinder performance. Some scientists have proposed that consuming more water might enhance performance during strenuous activity.
- Weight loss. Water may also help with weight loss if it is consumed instead of sweetened juices and sodas. “Preloading” with water before meals can help prevent overeating by creating a sense of fullness.
- Save money. If none of these benefits sound intriguing to you, then consider how much money you could save by drinking non-bottled water!
Blog originally written by myclevelandclinic.org.
Keeping yourself up to date on the latest nutrition news is nearly impossible if you’re not a health professional – and you might find yourself stressing over what to prioritize as you try to maintain a balanced diet.
Wherever you are in your own health journey, these 13 nutrition tips from NAC Registered Dietitian, Lisa James, are great starting points for anyone looking to improve their nutrition and overall health.
- Protein doesn’t need to come from an animal or shake! Nuts, beans, lentils and tofu also great sources of protein.
- Reset your internal hunger cues! Eat at least every 4 hours a day and try to not eat more than every 2 hours.
- Want to improve your triglycerides and HDL levels? Cut back on processed carbohydrates and increase protein!
- Your body needs fat to support cell growth, protect your organs and keep your body warm! Chose healthy fats such as nuts, plant oils and fish.
- Consume at least 25 grams of fiber a day! Fiber is key to weight loss. Pears and artichokes are great options!
- Eating a protein-packed breakfast like eggs or greek yogurt will keep you full and help you eat fewer calories throughout the day.
- If you opt for meat, select lean cuts of beef and pork especially “loin” or “round” cuts.
- Eat fish often! It’s best broiled, roasted or grilled.
- Swap store-bought salad dressing for homemade dressing. Olive or flaxseed oil are excellent ingredients to add into the mix!
- Reduce your sodium intake by swapping your salt for herbs, spices, garlic, onions, lemons or limes!
- Over doing the post workout fuel? If you worked out for less than an hour, rehydrating with water might be enough!
- Are you a positive role model for your children? Make breakfast a habit – even if it’s on the go!
- What carbohydrate keeps hunger and blood sugar levels in check? Fiber, that’s right – it’s a carbohydrate! Whole grains, fruits and veggies.
Interested in learning more about nutrition and what foods fuel your body?
At the NAC, we know that to be successful in reaching your health goals, your nutrition plays an important role. For that reason, we have a Registered Dietitian on our staff to better serve you. Our Registered Dietitians provide you with complimentary nutrition classes, included in membership at the NAC, and seminars as well as fee-based personalized nutrition coaching to support your fitness in any stage of your life. Nutrition services may be covered by your insurance and are eligible for HSA coverage.
Our next HealthyCare session begins May 14. To learn more about our 13-week program & nutrition plan that has helped many participants “lose an average of 15 pounds,” contact firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the form below.
Wellness Week at Urban Allure Salon & Spa begins April 8! If you are hesitant to book your first massage, read below to learn more about how it will benefit your mind, body and well-being.
What is massage?
Massage is a general term for pressing, rubbing and manipulating your skin, muscles, tendons and ligaments. Massage may range from light stroking to deep pressure. There are many different types of massage, including these common types:
- Swedish massage. This is a gentle form of massage that uses long strokes, kneading, deep circular movements, vibration and tapping to help relax and energize you.
- Deep massage. This massage technique uses slower, more-forceful strokes to target the deeper layers of muscle and connective tissue, commonly to help with muscle damage from injuries.
- Sports massage. This is similar to Swedish massage, but it’s geared toward people involved in sport activities to help prevent or treat injuries.
- Trigger point massage. This massage focuses on areas of tight muscle fibers that can form in your muscles after injuries or overuse.
Benefits of massage
Massage is generally considered part of complementary and integrative medicine. It’s increasingly being offered along with standard treatment for a wide range of medical conditions and situations.
Studies of the benefits of massage demonstrate that it is an effective treatment for reducing stress, pain and muscle tension.
While more research is needed to confirm the benefits of massage, some studies have found massage may also be helpful for:
- Digestive disorders
- Insomnia related to stress
- Myofascial pain syndrome
- Soft tissue strains or injuries
- Sports injuries
- Temporomandibular joint pain
Beyond the benefits for specific conditions or diseases, some people enjoy massage because it often produces feelings of caring, comfort and connection.
Despite its benefits, massage isn’t meant as a replacement for regular medical care. Let your doctor know you’re trying massage and be sure to follow any standard treatment plans you have.
Risks of massage
Most people can benefit from massage. However, massage may not be appropriate if you have:
- Bleeding disorders or take blood-thinning medication
- Burns or healing wounds
- Deep vein thrombosis
- Severe osteoporosis
- Severe thrombocytopenia
Discuss the pros and cons of massage with your doctor, especially if you are pregnant or you have cancer or unexplained pain.
Some forms of massage can leave you feeling a bit sore the next day. But massage shouldn’t ordinarily be painful or uncomfortable. If any part of your massage doesn’t feel right or is painful, speak up right away. Most serious problems come from too much pressure during massage.
What you can expect during a massage
You don’t need any special preparation for massage. Before a massage therapy session starts, your massage therapist should ask you about any symptoms, your medical history and what you’re hoping to get out of massage. Your massage therapist should explain the kind of massage and techniques he or she will use.
In a typical massage therapy session, you undress or wear loose-fitting clothing. Undress only to the point that you’re comfortable. You generally lie on a table and cover yourself with a sheet. You can also have a massage while sitting in a chair, fully clothed. Your massage therapist should perform an evaluation through touch to locate painful or tense areas and to determine how much pressure to apply.
If a massage therapist is pushing too hard, ask for lighter pressure. Occasionally you may have a sensitive spot in a muscle that feels like a knot. It’s likely to be uncomfortable while your massage therapist works it out. But if it becomes painful, speak up.
The take-home message about massage
Brush aside any thoughts that massage is only a feel-good way to indulge or pamper yourself. To the contrary, massage can be a powerful tool to help you take charge of your health and well-being, whether you have a specific health condition or are just looking for another stress reliever. You can even learn how to do self-massage or how to engage in massage with a partner at home.
Blog written by the Mayo Clinic – for more information on massage benefits visit www.mayoclinic.org.
If you have questions or would like further information please fill out the form below and visit Urban Allure Salon & Spa’s website here.
Easy to transport, satiating and nutrient dense! When your energy level dips late afternoon, give yourself a boost with one of our easy to make energy bites!
Prep time: 10 minutes | Total time: 20 minutes | This recipe makes 12 bites!
14 medium size dates
1/2 cup of walnuts
1/2 cup of steel cut oats
1/2 cup of peanut butter
1 T. of chia seeds
1 T. of honey
1 T. of vanilla extract
2 T. of cacao powder
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
Soak dates for 8 – 10 minutes before chopping. Chop walnuts into small pieces. In medium size bowl, mix all ingredients together.
Roll into small balls. Freeze or refrigerate for at least 10 minutes before eating. Store bites in fridge or freezer for up to one week.
(Amount per serving)
Protein: 4 g
Total Fat: 6 g
Saturated: 0 g
Fiber: 4 g
Carbohydrate: 30 g
Sugar: Added sugar: 0 | Natural sugar: 19 g
Sodium: 215 mg
*Nutrition Analysis by DietMaster Pro
Recipe by NAC RD, Lisa James.
Want to schedule a visit or learn more about membership at the Newtown Athletic Club? Complete the form below!
April is Stress Awareness Month which means taking time to unwind and educate yourself on ways to improve your stress management tactics.
While you can’t avoid stress, you can minimize it by changing how you choose to respond to it. The ultimate reward for your efforts is a healthy, balanced life, with time for work, relationships, relaxation, and fun. Here are some tips on how to manage it:
- Eat and drink sensibly. Alcohol and food abuse may seem to reduce stress, but it actually adds to it.
- Set realistic goals and expectations. It’s okay, and healthy, to realize you cannot be 100% successful at everything at once.
- Sell yourself to yourself. When you are feeling overwhelmed, remind yourself of what you do well. Have a healthy sense of self-esteem.
- Exercise regularly. Choose an exercise and set reasonable goals. Aerobic exercise has been shown to release endorphins (natural substances that help you feel better and maintain a positive attitude).
- Examine your values and live by them. The more your actions reflect your beliefs, the better you will feel, no matter how busy your life is. Use your values when choosing your activities
- Assert yourself. You do not have to meet others’ expectations or demands. It’s okay to say “No.” Remember, being assertive allows you to stand up for your rights and beliefs while respecting those of others.
- Stop smoking or other bad habits. Aside from the obvious health risks of cigarettes, nicotine acts as a stimulant and brings on more stress symptoms. Give yourself the gift of dropping unhealthy habits.
- Study and practice relaxation techniques. Relax every day. Choose from a variety of different techniques. Combine opposites; a time for deep relaxation and a time for aerobic exercise is a sure way to protect your body from the effects of stress.
- Take responsibility. Control what you can and leave behind what you cannot control.
- Reduce stressors (cause of stress). Many people find that life is filled with too many demands and too little time. For the most part, these demands are ones we have chosen. Effective time-management skills involve asking for help when appropriate, setting priorities, pacing yourself, and taking time out for yourself.
There are several other methods you can use to relax or reduce stress, including:
- Deep breathing exercises
- Progressive muscle relaxation
- Mental imagery relaxation
- Relaxation to music
- Counseling, to help you recognize and release stress
- Ask your healthcare provider for more information about these techniques
Blog written by the Clevland Clinic, for more on stress management visit my.clevelandclinic.org.
At the NAC, we know the importance of balanced physical and mental health, which comes from nutrition, exercise and stress management together. The HealthyCare Program helps manage stress, creates a personal fitness plan for you, meal planning, group support sessions and more. If you are interested in taking the next step towards a healthier you, please fill out our form below.
Have you been experiencing knee pain? The source of your pain may lie in your hips.
People who have knee pain likely have a hip weakness which is a cause or contributing factor to their knee issues. Knees and hips have a close biomechanical relationship and when hip strength is impaired in the gluteus medius and maximus, this relationship is affected and there is increased strain through the knee joint. It has been found that prescribed hip strengthening exercises combined with stretching are a useful technique to improve knee pain symptoms.
Vice versa, if knee pain goes unaddressed and you continue to push through the pain you can end up compensating your gait, squat, or running mechanics. Through your movement dysfunction, you can consequently develop hip pain, especially if you already have a pre-existing hip weakness.
If you are suffering from knee or hip pain and think that you might benefit from physical therapy to address your symptoms, you can stop inside the Aquahab Physical Therapy Clinic located across from the indoor pool for a scheduled 15-minute screen free of charge.
If you are interested in learning more about Aquahab Physical Therapy, please fill out the form below.
1) Hip Strength and Knee Pain in Females. N Am J Sports Phys Ther. 2007 Aug; 2(3): 164–169.
2) The role of hip muscle function in the treatment of patellofemoral pain syndrome. Am J Sports Med. 2006 Apr;34(4):630-6. Epub 2005 Dec 19.
Capital Health Medical Group, Capital Health’s network of more than 250 physicians and other providers who offer primary and specialty care, has opened a new primary care office in Newtown.
The new Capital Health Primary Care – Newtown office, located on 3 Penns Trail Road (a half mile away from Newtown Athletic Club), features five board certified doctors and a nurse practitioner who are available for appointments to provide check-ups, sick visits and preventive care for children and adults (including care that’s specific for women and older adults).
Capital Health Primary Care – Newtown is led by board certified physicians Dr. Robert Remstein, Dr. Jane Abdalla, Dr. Harmony Bonnes, Dr. Kelley Vandergrift, and Dr. Stephen Vanni, as well as certified nurse practitioner Angela Marchesani. NAC members are invited to a community open house on Thursday, March 28 from 5 to 7 p.m. to meet the team and tour the new facility.
All Capital Health Medical Group offices use a shared electronic medical records system, which allows providers to access medical records on a secure network, making it convenient for patients to continue their care across our network of primary and specialty care providers. Patients can also manage their health easier using our Capital Health Medical Group patient portal, which allows patients to conveniently access information about any of their office visits online.
Office hours at Capital Health Primary Care – Newtown are Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday (8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) and Wednesday (8 a.m. to 7 p.m.). To make an appointment, call 215.504.1761 or learn more by visiting www.capitalhealth.org/primarycarenewtown.
Please fill out the form below if you’re are interested in learning about future events sponsored by Capital Health.