Our previous blog post talked about foods and drinks to NOT put into your body. Now let’s talk about the 7 foods that are nutritious AND taste good to help preserve your musculoskeletal system.
- Salmon is often referred to as a “super food”, packing a punch of protein, minerals, and vitamins like B12. Most important: salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
- Greek yogurt is thicker than regular yogurt because the liquid is drained giving it a creamy texture. It contains probiotic cultures and is lower in lactose than regular yogurt. Greek yogurt is an excellent source of calcium, zinc, and B12. Stir some blueberries or strawberries into a cup of plain Greek yogurt and you have a great kick start to your day.
- Sweet potatoes are another “super food” and extremely versatile. Plain or fancy with stuffing or toppings, they are high in fiber and potassium. They are also known to maintain a healthy blood pressure. A sweet potato contains more nutrients and less calories than a white potato.
- While dairy products are essential to a child’s growth, it can be a source of discomfort for some adults. Dairy products are rich in calcium and vitamin D, along with other nutrients, to help keep bones and teeth strong. For those on a diet, you may opt for a fat free version and there are lactose free brands for those with a low tolerance. Both still have the calcium that is provided in regular milk.
- When your mom told you to eat your veggies, she was on to something. Leafy greens should be your “go-to” vegetable whenever possible. Greens like broccoli, kale, cabbage, spinach, romaine lettuce, and arugula contain essential vitamins like A (for the immune system), C (for tissue repair), and K (for blood coagulation). Nuts may also lower your blood sugar. The best nuts for your health are almonds, pistachios, walnuts, and cashews, however, go easy since a large handful may contain as many as 200 calories.
- Another great source of fiber and vitamin B can be found in beans. They may also help lower cholesterol and blood sugar. The best beans with benefits are chickpeas, lentils, peas, kidney and black beans.
- Figs, dried or fresh, are rich in fiber and give you a feeling of fullness. They are also high in calcium to help promote bone health.
So there you have it. Add these “Super 7” to your regular diet and you’re on your way to a healthy eating habit. When you do have pain or injury to your musculoskeletal system, Sarasota Orthopedic Associates can be your “go-to” place for help. We have 3 convenient locations and offer same or next day appointments when needed.
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We often talk about how important exercise is to keep your joints lubricated. At Sarasota Orthopedic Associates our favorite mottos are “move it or lose it” and “motion is lotion”. But what about our bones and musculoskeletal system? What we feed our bodies affects our overall health including our bones. Let’s take a look at some foods that may be harmful when used in excess.
- Sugar. Yep, sugar is bad for you. You’ve heard it hundreds of times and unfortunately, that sweet stuff that tastes so good can do serious harm. First, there are calories, and heaps of them. There are good sugars in fruits and veggies, however, adding sugar in any form (including the healthy-sounding agave) is a problem. That problem worsens if you have diabetes. Sugar may also affect your heart and dental health. If you have arthritis, sugar may exacerbate symptoms. Some studies show sugar may cause addiction and cravings compared to cocaine addiction.
- Next is salt. Sodium is a necessary nutrient for the body in maintaining muscles, nerves, and balancing body fluids. When used in excess salt becomes a time bomb. High salt intake has been associated with increased risk of stroke, heart disease, hypertension, swelling of feet, and overall bloating.
- Our next culprit is soda. The average consumption per person in America is 38 gallons per year. Yes, you read that correctly. The good news is the statistic is down 6 gallons/year from a decade ago so we are starting to be more health conscious. Soda, or “pop”, contains high fructose, a form of sugar, and increases your sweet cravings. Soda also contains phosphoric acid which weakens bones and teeth. Even diet soda is harmful as it contains acids, food coloring and for some sodas, caramel coloring, a carcinogen. A diet soda may still trick the brain and induce cravings similar to one containing real sugar.
- Caffeine is a tough habit to break. Ninety percent of Americans consume it in some form at a rate of 300 mgs a day. That would be about three 8 oz. cups of coffee. Caffeine contains addictive qualities resulting in it being named by some as America’s favorite “drug”. It’s even more popular in European countries.
- Last on the list, and you may have already guessed this one, is alcohol. While drinking small amounts of red wine have been linked with healthy benefits, there is an enormous downside to overindulgence, abuse, and addiction. Side effects may put you at risk for some cancers like liver and mouth. It may also cause poor judgement, hostility, depression, obesity, and lowered brain function.
That’s the bad news but don’t despair. On our next blog we’ll deliver the good news on how to keep your bones and muscles healthy with nourishing, tasty foods … stay tuned!
Sarasota Orthopedic Associates offers same/next day appointments at three locations. Our commitment is to get our patients back on their feet, back to work, back in the game, and back to life.
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If you’ve followed us for the past three months, you already know a few of our enthusiastic staff members took on a challenge to live a better lifestyle and shed some pounds. The team lost a total of 117 pounds to date. Awesome! We wanted to know what inspired the top “losers” to keep them on course:
Lisa from our Call Center lost 9 ½% of her body weight. Her goal is to be healthier overall and the SOA physical therapy team kept her moving on the treadmill. Lisa bought a special dress for her daughter’s wedding in October and is committed to fitting into that gorgeous gown. He husband was a wonderful support partner by cooking healthy dinners and the SOA staff continually sent Lisa positive vibes on her journey to making healthy choices.
Robin, our Business Office Director, didn’t find the challenge hard at all. Good for you Robin! Mind over matter? She was already active, but not focused or dedicated with a goal. She felt she was able to stay on course by looking in the mirror and seeing the inspirational difference every day. During the challenge, Robin lost 8% of her body weight and has continued to achieve a 15% loss. Robin’s husband is incredibly supportive in the way they eat every day by cooking with health in mind.
Ale, also in our Call Center, found the hardest part of the challenge was staying on course. She lost over 7% of her body weight by keeping her eye on the goal … her upcoming October wedding. Ale looks great but says she still has a bit more to lose and is paying more attention to what she eats.
Dianne E, in our business office, says the hardest challenge for her was fixing meals for her family who were not dieting. She is motivated to be more physically active with her grandchildren. Dianne feels she still has a long way to get to her goal weight and is motivated to continue for her own well-being. Her advice? Set small goals along the way instead of one large one. There is more satisfaction each time you hit your mark!
These were our top four winners in our #TeamSOA Biggest Loser Challenge and it was inspirational to see them support each other on the journey. Those of us not officially in the challenge still managed to drop a couple pounds after being encouraged by these ladies. It prompted us to stop and think about the little things: Do I really want that cookie? Should I take the stairs instead of the elevator? How hungry will I be later if I skip breakfast? How many more steps can I fit in if I park at the far end of the parking lot?
At Sarasota Orthopedic Associates we are committed to our staff as well as our patients. We are so proud to watch our work family travel this road to better health. Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “The first wealth is health”. What about you? Have you done something wonderful for yourself lately?
Pictured: Ale, Lisa, Robin
If you’ve been following along, you know we are nearing the final weeks of our “Biggest Loser Challenge” here at Sarasota Orthopedic Associates. Even though our task is coming to a close, we will continue to commit to our new lifestyle of healthy eating and staying fit. Many people have the false notion if they diet, they don’t need to exercise. This is a myth. Exercise is a critical component of weight loss and without it, your dieting may prove unsuccessful.
Here are some tips from Andrea in our Physical Therapy department to guide you through your new lease on life:
Losing weight too fast may halt metabolism and force the body into undernourishment mode and cause fat storage.
- You could do more harm when you try to lose weight by drastically cutting calories and going all out on cardio exercise. Constant over-exercise can stress the body and may lead to storage of body fat.
- Skipping meals may also slow down metabolism and create a decline in the thyroid hormone T3, dopamine, and serotonin. This may increase food cravings and result in weight gain.
- Try to limit cardio to 40 minute intervals and include short bursts of high intensity training with short rest breaks. Add strength training also to your routine 3 times a week.
- Include healthy fats, protein and carbs into each meal. Enjoy a “cheat” meal every 7 to 10 days to jump start your good hormones and keep your body from feeling deprived.
What are YOUR tips that guided you through a successful weight loss program? Share them with us!
As with any new exercise or diet program, always consult with your physician first to give you a “green light” on proceeding. A healthy weight, exercise, and nutritional diet all contribute to your orthopedic health. If you have concerns regarding your bones, muscles, tendons, joints, or spine, we are here to help. At Sarasota Orthopedic Associates, we offer same day appointments at all our locations when needed. Please go to our website at www.SOA.md for more information.
No, Sarasota Orthopedic Associates is not trying to turn you into a Vegetarian or Vegan. We ARE suggesting that cutting back on some of your meat intake could prove beneficial. Dani, in our call center, has some great suggestions here to help you keep Meatless Monday interesting and yummy:
Think about it … babies aren’t programmed to eat meat until we as a society program them to do so. Fatty red meat and processed meat with high saturated fat content may contribute to heart disease. Meat does provide protein, however protein can be obtained in plant based foods like these:
- Hemp seeds
- Chia seeds
- Nutritional yeast (go ahead and sprinkle some on your food)
- Peanut butter
- Steel cut oatmeal
- Brussel sprouts
Once you realize how easy it is to substitute for meat it’s amazing what you can accomplish. Don’t be afraid to broaden your horizons and experiment with recipes. Here are a couple flavor packed ideas to get you started.
RED LENTIL CURRY
- 3 TBSPS Canola Oil
- 2 TBSPS Chopped fresh Ginger
- 2 Cloves of garlic (chopped)
- 8 Scallions, sliced, white and green separated
- 1 TBSP of curry powder
- 4 Medium carrots (close to 8 oz) , chopped
- 1 Large Russet potato, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
- 4 Cups low sodium vegetable broth
- Salt and black pepper
- Naan bread and lime wedges for serving
- Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add ginger, garlic, and scallion whites and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Stir in the curry powder.
- Add the carrots, potato, lentils, broth, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
- Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lentils and vegetables are tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
- Sprinkle the curry with the scallion greens and serve with the naan and lime wedges.
- 1 TBSP butter
- ½ Cup sliced green onions
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 package frozen spinach thawed and drained
- 1 Cup ricotta cheese
- ½ Cup sour cream
- 2 Cups shredded cheese of your choice
- 1 Can (19 oz) of enchilada sauce
- 10 corn tortillas
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
- Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and onion; cook for a few minutes until fragrant, but not brown. Stir in spinach, and cook for about 5 more minutes. Remove from the heat, and mix in ricotta cheese, sour cream, and 1 cup of Monterey Jack cheese.
- In a skillet over medium heat, warm tortillas one at a time for about 15 seconds. Spoon about 1/4 cup of the spinach mixture onto the center of each tortilla. Roll up, and place seam side down in a 9×13 inch baking dish. Pour enchilada sauce over the top, and add the remaining cup of Monterey Jack.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven.
See more recipes at: http://www.meatlessmonday.com/favorite-recipes/
A balanced diet and regular exercise will help contribute to achieving your healthy lifestyle goals. Our staff at Sarasota Orthopedic Associates is on a mission as a team to rethink how we eat. The SOA Biggest Loser Challenge began two months ago and we feel better already! For more about SOA, visit us at www.SOA.md.
For years, we’ve been told to eat healthy and exercise daily, but who can resist the sensual temptation of a Godiva Cappuccino truffle, a Ghirardelli Evening Dream Bar, or a classic Lindt treat? Gosh, even a milk chocolate Hershey kiss will do in a pinch when getting a yen for chocolate.
News broke last week from a new study with a burst of excitement … chocolate may be GOOD for you. WooHoo. A recent discovery of PHENOLIC ACTIVE COMPOUNDS (anti-oxidants) found in THEOBROMA CACOA (cocoa seed) has shown to have abundant benefits by eating chocolate, particularly dark chocolate. Dark chocolate has a higher concentration of these compounds with little sugar while milk chocolate still contains the beneficial compound but with higher sugar content.
There are health risks and those include a high calorie count and a contributing factor to bone density health. However, the potential benefits include: blood pressure improvement, mood enhancement, appetite reduction, stroke prevention, improved memory, increased HDL cholesterol (the good kind), reduced cardiovascular risk, lower stress levels, and even skin improvement. This doesn’t give us the green light to stuff ourselves with high quantities of chocolate but it does give some satisfaction minimizing our guilt when enjoying an occasional dark truffle.
More research is still being done and ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS check with your physician before adding chocolate to your diet. Since seeing my family physician last week, I now hear a Dove Dark Promise calling my name.
Your thoughts? Comment below.
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