In this blog we will cover ways to help your diet and understand what nutritional benefit some foods can play in helping you build a stronger immune system.
So here are some important areas of your diet to focus on and potentially increase:
Vitamin D: Over the past few years, the information around Vitamin D has greatly increased. Vitamin D has been shown to protect against respiratory diseases, flu development, depression and cardiac disease markers. But how can we increase our intake? Sun exposure is the best source of Vitamin D, but you can also find it in salmon, egg yolks, milk and cereals. But as we’re in Ireland it can be useful to supplement your diet with Vitamin D because of the weak strength of the sun and now winter is closing in. So a simple Vitamin D supplement from your local health store can be greatly beneficial to your health.
Protein: Protein can help your body build lean tissue and also help build antibodies. Protein is arguably the most important macronutrient for your immune system. Whether animal or plant-based, aim for the best quality available to you that you can afford. Recommended amounts are different for everyone due to body weight and the amount of activity you are doing.
Zinc: Zinc is very important to the immune system by effectively activating T-Cells. T-cells job is to attack infected cells and will help regulate your immune response. Ways to increase the amount of Zinc in your diet is to eat foods such as scallops and oysters. Also, high-quality whole grains are good food sources for Zinc.
Vitamin C: If you want a great micronutrient for an immune boost, Vitamin C will do that job for you. It’s a powerful antioxidant that can help your body produce lymphocytes and phagocytes. These are vital for your immune system to help protect you against infections. Where can you find Vitamin C? Citrus fruits, broccoli and bell peppers are great for this. But similar to the other Vitamins mentioned above it can be useful to supplement these in your diet as well.
Sleep: Sleep is one of the most important good habits you can develop. This is because it affects everything we do and how our body functions the next day. What do you do with your phone at night? Charge it. Otherwise, you are not going to be using it at its full capacity the next day. It is the same with your body. Give it the recharge it needs. To help increase your sleep try these tips:
Aim to get 7-9 hours of uninterrupted time in bed. Put your phone away before bed as this will help reduce distractions.
Stick to a consistent bedtime so your body gets used to going to bed at a certain time.
Precede bedtime with some deep breathing work to engage the parasympathetic nervous system which is the relaxing part of your nervous system.
These habits and diet tips might be basic, but that does not make it easy. Your day can change without you expecting it and throw a spanner in your new routine. But building good habits can provide you with some flexibility when your day gets out of control. So give these tips a go this week and see how you feel.
If you have any questions and want to improve your health from diet advice to decreasing aches and pains you may have contact the clinic today on 0578678904, direct message us on Facebook or book now.
Yours in Health
The Lawlor Clinic: Spine & Sport, Portlaoise, Laois
What are the benefits of supplementing your diet with Omega 3?
Omega-3 fatty acids play a vital role in signalling roles for your heart, muscles and nervous system. This makes them a crucial requirement for you to consume as part of your diet. This should come to 250-500mg per day. If you are deficient in Omega 3 fatty acids it can be beneficial to have your diet include foods high in Omega 3 or supplement your diet. These benefits include:
Decrease muscle loss during immobilisation and recovery from injury.
Increases muscle recovery
Helps with cardiovascular health
Omega-3 is also a great natural anti-inflammatory
Muscle recovery? Periods of muscle unloading or limb immobilization result in can cause muscles to get smaller and weaker. It has been shown omega-3 fatty acid ingestion may alleviate immobilization induced muscle loss.
Muscle health? Consuming enough omega-3 fatty acid aids in protection against exercise-induced muscle damage (the feeling you get after a tough workout) with some studies demonstrating that omega-3 fatty acid ingestion reduces losses in muscle strength and the general feeling of soreness following exercise.
How to include it in your diet? Omega-3 fatty acid sources include fish such as mackerel, salmon, herring or plant-based sources such as flax and hemp seeds. To help achieve your weekly requirements you can have two servings of oily fish per week.
If you would like other tips and treatment to help perform at your best, then contact the clinic today on 0578678904, direct message us on Facebook or book now.
Yours in Health
The Lawlor Clinic: Spine & Sport, Portlaoise, Laois
Headaches can affect peoples life from work, hobbies and when you are trying to relax at home. The most common headache is tension-type headaches. This can cause pain in the back of the head, into the neck and around your eyes. This typically happens on both sides of the head.
There are many factors that contribute to tension-type headaches. These include:
Not drinking enough water
Holding your head in one position for a long time
Sleeping in an awkward position
Head and neck injury
Clenching your jaw or grinding your teeth
How can chiropractic care help your headache?
In the clinic, we can first check the lifestyle factors that may be aggravating your headaches and give you ways to manage them better. This includes looking at your posture and giving home exercises to you. We perform a full examination on every new patient which should identify the triggering factors for your headache.
We will also do various treatment methods that best suit you. These can be:
Soft tissue massage
Active Release Techniques
Drink more water
Especially with the weather warming up, it is important to touch on water consumption for headaches and general well being. The average person should be drinking at least 2 litres of water which is around 8 cups per day. But if you are active and exercising try 2-3 extra glasses per hour of exercise. Getting your recommended water intake will help with the following:
Normalising blood pressure
Regulate body temperature more efficiently
Flushes out bacteria using your body’s natural sewage system
If you have headaches or neck pain and are not sure what to do about them, then contact the clinic today on 0578678904, direct message us on Facebook or book now.
Yours in Health
The Lawlor Clinic: Spine & Sport, Portlaoise, Laois
Almost everyone has experienced a headache in their lifetime. If it only happens once then there is usually no need to do anything about as it will be quickly forgotten. What about those that come back regularly, every month, weekly or even daily? There are many kinds of headaches which can be very debilitating, especially migraines.
What is a migraine? A migraine is a specific type of headache. It is defined as recurring head pain due to changes in the brain and/ or surrounding vasculature. These can come with or without an “aura”. An aura is a symptom/ feeling/ sound/ vision that comes on before the migraine starts, as a warning sign.
Migraines are usually related to triggering factors such as:
Pain can be very intense and is usually described as pulsating or throbbing. More often than not it is located on one side of the forehead and can last several hours to days.
Some common side effects of migraines are:
Sensitivity to light
Sensitivity to sound
What can ease the symptoms of migraine? Migraines can respond well to conservative care including:
Active Release Technique (ART)
Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization (DNS)
Medication (if needed)
Another very important aspect to help with migraines is to find the triggering factor(s) to be able to avoid them if possible or at least manage them when encountered.
If you have recurrent migraines or headaches and are not sure what to do about them, contact us at the Lawlor Clinic in Portlaoise for a consultation to see how we can help.
According to the “2019 Canadian Guidelines for Physical Activity Throughout Pregnancy”, in general physical activity is associated with greater benefits and “has been proposed as a preventative or therapeutic measure to reduce pregnancy complications and optimise maternal-fetal health”.
Women who were active prior to pregnancy are encouraged to continue exercising with appropriate modifications and going by how they feel at all times. Those women who were inactive before pregnancy are encouraged to start exercising during pregnancy, starting at lower intensity and progressively increasing the intensity and duration of the exercise to their tolerance.
Always be sure to get the go ahead from a medical professional beforehand as there are several contraindications to exercise while pregnant that must not be ignored.
Click the link below for the full article with a comprehensive list of all contraindications.
Physical activity recommendations for pregnant women:
All women without contraindications should be physically active throughout pregnancy
A good goal is to aim to accumulate at least 150 minutes of “moderate intensity” exercise (being able to maintain a conversation during that exercise) spread out over at least 3 days a week.
Being active everyday is encouraged
Exercises should be varied, including aerobic and resistance work. Yoga/ stretching can also be added.
Doing daily “pelvic floor muscle training”, for example Kegel exercises, may help decrease urinary incontinence.
If feeling unwell, light-headed, or nauseated while exercising, specifically when laying on the back, the exercise should be modified to resolve the symptoms. For example, doing the exercises side lying rather then laying on back.
Maintain proper hydration and nutrition before, during and after any activities.
When to stop exercising and seek help from a medical professional:
Persistent excessive shortness of breath that does not resolve on rest.
Regular and painful uterine contractions
Amniotic fluid leakage
Dizziness or fainting that does not resolve on rest
Are there any exercises that should be avoided during pregnancy?
Put simply Yes.
Avoid exercising in excessive heat and/ or humidity (for example hot yoga), activities involving physical contact or possibility of falling eg. scuba diving and skiing. Physical activity above 2500m or high intensity/ competitive exercises should be discussed with obstetric care beforehand.
For more information or to arrange a pregnancy consultation contact the clinic on 057 8678904.
In the last blog article we covered a number of different topics related to concussion and its management. We will focus on nutrition and sleep in this article.
Post Concussion Signs & Symptoms:
Difficulty in remembering things or people
Lack of Focus
How to Improve Recovery with Nutrition:
Omega 3 Fish Oils are important in cognitive function of the brain, they will also act as anti inflammatories for the brain during the recovery phase of the concussion
Creatine helps to increase water retention in the body which will in turn increase fluid levels supporting the brain during healing.
Turmeric is a powerful natural anti inflammatory which can also aid in the recovery phase
The majority of post concussion patients will need to increase their number of hours of sleep as this is essential for the brain to recovery from injury. It is also important to decrease the time spent on mobile devices as the blue light from the screen can have an effect on melatonin levels which help to regulate sleep cycles. Most devices and computer now come with blue light filter or apps can be downloaded if not included on your phone, tablet or computer.
Aimee had a great time last night at the Portlaoise Leisure center last night, May 12th, 2016, sharing their presentation “Sitting Is The New Smoking”.
For those of you who couldn’t attend, here is a little recap of the evening.
-Sitting is the new Smoking is a phrase coined by Dr. James Levine, an American endocrinologist. He says, ” Sitting is more dangerous than smoking, kills more people than HIV, and is more treacherous than parachuting. We are sitting ourselves to death.”
Supplements are an important aspect for reaching optimal health and well-being as most of us are not intaking adequate nutrients on a daily basis. Our diets have changed over the years, we have gone from eating whole food sources to more foods that are pre-prepared and pre-packaged, which usually means less nutritional value. Supplementation is not meant to replace eating healthy, but meant to be an addition to healthy eating habits, to help us get all the nutrients we need. Here is our list of the most important you should be taking:
Probiotics– more research keeps coming out about how many different conditions are affected and prevented by having a healthy micro biome in our guts. Even if you haven’t been on antibiotics recently, but especially if you have, make sure to get good bacteria into your system. Outside of supplementation you can get bacteria through fermented foods and yogurts as well.
Vitamin D– this is a common deficiency to have, especially in places where daylight and sunshine is limited. It is not just for bone health, but can impact a number of systems in the body, contributing to: fatigue and achy muscle pains. Make sure to get it in D3 form with supplements.
Omega oils– you can get these from animal sources such as fish oil or krill oil, but they can also be obtained from plant sources such as flax, chia, and hemp seeds, and spirulina. They help with heart and brain function, and can also be beneficial in certain conditions such as ADHD and autism.
Magnesium– is used throughout the body in different systems. It can lead to symptoms such as: fatigue, muscle cramping, and numbness/tingling.
Zinc– we don’t store it in the body, so its important to get this one daily. It helps to ward off colds and keep your immune system strong among other things.
Everyone is different and their nutrient needs are also different, but this can be used as a guide to help you make sure you are including these important substances into your daily routine.
Autism is a neuro-developmental disability that affects the development of the brain in areas of social interaction and communication. The disorder affects about 1 in 100 children in Ireland according to recent studies.
While there are a number of resources for Autism which discuss the possible causes of the disorder we would like to look at the things that you as a parent might able to introduce to your child life that may benefit them.
Cleaning Up Diet: Many who have autism suffer with digestive issues. Cleaning up the diet and supplementation can help significantly with this. Removal of gluten, diary, processed foods, food additives and the reduction of sugar in the diet can have a profound effect on your child’s behaviour as well as.
Supplementation: Addition of high dose fish oils which are rich in Omega 3 are great at supporting the brain’s neurotransmitters. As well as a probiotic to help balance the gut bacteria, which can also help with digestive issues. This is especially important if your child has been on antibiotics at some point. Other vitamins/minerals that have been shown to be beneficial are: B6, C, and zinc.
Daily Exercise and Balance: Daily movement and balance work is essential for for the brain, Exercise can help with the dopamine levels in the brain.
Listening Therapy: This therapy has been around since the 1970’s but is not very well known in Ireland. Listening therapy has shown to be a very effective neuroplastic technique to cause changes within the child’s brain. Paul Madaule, one of the world’s leaders, has seen improvements in two thirds of the children that he has seen at his centre.
These are a few of the many options out there for parents of children with Autism. Don’t let a diagnosis dictate the future of your child and know that there are things you can do to empower your child and help ease some of the symptoms associated with this disorder.
Yours in health
The Lawlor Clinic
Chiropractic | Mums & Babies | Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization
With the holiday season in full swing its easy to get caught up in the “madness” of the season. And for many, this time of year seems to be more stressful than joyful. We’re here to give you a few tips to help you have a healthy happy holiday season!
Maintaining a routine is a key element in reducing stress. And it can be very difficult this time of year with parties to attend to, visitors from out of town, and dinners to cook. But if you keep some sense of “normalcy” in your daily tasks it can help take some of the pressure off. These include:
Rest– getting enough sleep is vital to how you will feel during the day. Do you ever get that “on edge” feeling when you haven’t slept enough? You will be more likely to lash out at people and feel more tense in general. Best rule, listen to your body, and take time to rest and slow down if you need it. Recruit others to help you get your tasks done.
Exercise– if you have been exercising, KEEP IT UP!! Don’t let a few visitors stop you from going on your daily run or walk. If you haven’t been exercising, today is a good day to start! Getting some activity is a great way to help manage stress levels, exercising also releases “feel-good” hormones into the body. Take your stress out on the gym, not on everyone else!
Food– this one is tough. During the season of excess, how do you maintain your n
ormal diet? With buns and pies everywhere it’s hard to resist, especially when you are not at your own home. Definitely enjoy having food that is out of the normal for you, but resist the temptation to overindulge. Plus, there are many ways to modify recipes to make them healthier choices that are just as tasty.
Stress wreaks havoc on the body and mind. Do what you need to do to calm down from that state: exercise, meditation, yoga, drawing, spending a few minutes alone. Maintaining a normal routine it can help take the stress of the unknown out of the equation. Remember what this season is all about, and enjoy it, because before you know it, it will be over!