Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

4 Ways to Avoid the Halloween Candy Temptations

by Kristin Stromberg, ATC

October has arrived, and now you can go to Jewel and buy candy by the truck load without getting weird looks! “It’s fine! The candy is for the neighborhood kids!” The question is, what happens with the candy that is left over?? I always buy the candy I like so I can pack it in my lunch once Halloween is over… Whoops! When it comes to Halloween candy, I do not know where to draw the line!! When I have multiple mini Twix, Kit-Kat or Snickers in front of me, it’s hard not to go for it. This year, I will have some willpower and use the following tricks to avoid the sugary temptations that Halloween brings.

  1. Buy Candy You Don’t Like

This was so hard for me to do. I walked past the bags filled with M&M’s, Twix, Three Musketeers and Snickers and went towards the Sweet Tarts, Whoppers, and Chewing Gum that I knew I wouldn’t eat. I’m pretty sure I could hear them calling my name! I thought to myself, why am I buying candy that I won’t eat?! In hindsight, I’m glad that I stuck to my plan. Now, I’m much less tempted to go in my pantry and sneak out a piece or two. Therefore, I don’t have to go and buy more treats before Halloween because I ate the whole bag by October 12th! It’s a win-win.

  1. Out of Sight Out of Mind

Typically, when you see that tasty treat sitting on your counter, or anywhere in your Halloween-decorated house, you are going to be tempted to have a bite. We’re only human! However, if you do not see it in the first place, you will be less tempted to snack on that evil candy.  Keep it in jars, in a cabinet or in a bowl in the closet. You will forget the candy is there until you need it for Halloween.

  1. Bring it to work

I like to bring extra Halloween candy to work because I know that I can not finish all of it myself, and I simply do not want it in my house. Your coworkers will be very grateful and the pressure to eat your treats at home will be gone! Be sure to put the treats out of arm’s reach so you have to get up from your desk to snack. Usually, I get so focused on my work that I forget I even wanted a piece of candy in the first place.

  1. Donate the Candy

Instead of trying to eat all the candy or pass it off to friends and family, how about donating it?  You can give it to the less fortunate, or to our service men and women who can not be home this Halloween! There are many websites that you can go to and donate your extra candy to those in need. Every little bit helps!

For this 2017 Halloween season, I am going to do my best on working on all of these tips to help with my sweet tooth. So what happens after Halloween you ask? As we head into Thanksgiving and Christmas festivities,  Dr. Jordan and Dr. Jade will come to your rescue!! They know exactly what foods to avoid and how you can control yourself during the holiday season. If you have any questions or need a push in the right direction call today for a FREE consultation to see how they can help at 847-362-4476!!

5 Reasons To Never Miss Your Appointment

by Emily Bauer, CMA(AAMA)

“Something came up at work and I can’t get out of it.” “My kid is sick.” “I accidentally scheduled another appointment at that time.” “I’m so sorry, I totally forgot!!!” Life happens, we get it, but there are always excuses for not coming into the office. For whatever reason you’re thinking about skipping out on your next appointment, take a minute to think about all the reasons you shouldn’t!

 

Here’s just a few reasons why you should never miss your appointments:

 

  1. Chiropractic care is PRO-ACTIVE.

We obviously love this word so much we had to put it in our name. The very definition of proactive means to control the situation by causing something to happen, rather than fixing it after something happens. You should view your chiro appointments as a preventative treatment. By having regular adjustments done and implementing a healthy lifestyle, we will help you to feel great all year round. “But I’m feeling fine” you say? Awesome! Your appointments will keep you feeling that way!. Instead of waiting for a painful injury, keep up with regular appointments to prevent injuries altogether. We are trying to be proactive about your health, you should be too!

 

  1. We do it for YOU.

Every single patient is unique to us. This fact allows your doctor to customize a treatment plan that is specific to you. Don’t you feel special now! The doctor’s ONLY job is to make sure that you are well. We are dedicating our time to you and working hard to find the most effective solution to your unique situation. Follow your appointment schedule and trust that the doctor knows what it takes to make you feel your best.

 

  1. Get the ANSWERS.

By now most of us know that the internet can be a scary place. It has become a habit to grab your phone and go to a website that can look up your symptoms and search for a diagnosis. After you’re convinced that there is something seriously wrong, you can also look up treatments on the very same website. Although you may feel like a super health detective, the internet is not a sufficient method to getting answers. Write down your symptoms, questions and concerns, and then make an appointment with a doctor! Your chiropractor has the knowledge and experience to assess and address the issues that are troubling you. Don’t turn to the internet, come to your appointment to get your answers.

 

  1. Be a part of the TEAM.

The most successful patients are the most involved patients. When it comes down to it, this is your life and your health. If you have made the decision to seek out help, our doctors will do everything  they can to give you the best care. Your team of chiropractic, rehab, nutrition, and massage, will  collaborate to give you the tools to build a healthy lifestyle, but we need you to follow through! Help us help you by following your care plan, asking questions, doing your homework, and coming to your appointments. Hands in. 1.2.3.Go team!

 

  1. R.E.S.P.E.C.T

As an office that promotes health, happiness, and well-being, we understand that your time is valuable.We try to make sure that every patient receives as efficient care as possible, and schedule accordingly. We understand that situations may come up and you will have to cancel your appointment, that’s just life! We simply ask that you try to be mindful that when you miss an appointment, since another patient could have been receiving care at that time. Therefore, If you are aware that you will not be able to make it to an appointment, please give proper notice so we can have someone else come in during that time. We have the utmost respect for you and your time, we hope that you will extend the same courtesy to us and our other patients!

Now that we’ve politely and kindly reminded you why you should never miss your appointment, go over to your schedule and make sure that you’ve penciled us in! Haven’t been in to see us yet? Call 847.362.4476 to schedule your free consultation today and check out our website to see the many services we provide here at North Shore Pro-Active Health! See you at your next appointment!

Supplement of the Month: L-Theanine

by Kristin Stromberg, ATC

September is officially here, and we all know what that means: school is back in session. For parents, this means taking your children to football, dance, cheerleading, swimming, piano lessons, tennis, tutors and much more. Your kids become overwhelmed with homework, reading, working on book reports, and studying for daunting tests. As a result, we are more vulnerable to stress and anxiety. Sometimes we need an extra boost, and luckily, L-Theanine can provide just that.

What is L-Theanine?

L-Theanine is a relaxing and non-dietary amino acid found pretty much exclusively in teas Camellia sinensis (mostly green and black tea) and is known to promote relaxation without sedation. The crucial difference seems to be not in whether the tea is green or black, but how young the tea leaves are at harvest. Theanine is found in highest concentrations in the buds and young leaves of the tea plant (1). It is available as a supplement that helps relieve anxiety. Theanine should be considered as a herbal remedy rather than a supplement, since it’s not found naturally in your body. As a result, like many herbs, it works to boost your body’s functioning in a natural way.

If you’re wanting to boost GABA levels in your brain (which will reduce anxiety for many people) then taking theanine might just be the perfect way to do it. Not only does theanine boost GABA (an inhibitory neurotransmitter), it also tones down some of the stimulating neurotransmitters that make you anxious (2). Moreover, it boosts brain dopamine – which is one of the “feel good” neurotransmitters – which may be the reason many people report feelings of well-being and mental focus when they take theanine.

Can’t I just drink tea instead??? Of course you can!! Some people do not like the taste of tea or they do not have the ability to make tea (at work or out and about throughout their day) and prefer to take a capsule or in liquid form. It is easy to travel with and you do not have to worry about carrying tea bags.

What are the Side Effects?

After 50 years of continual research, there are no known side effects(3). Thus, the only precaution would be if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or wanting to become pregnant. However, this applies to any supplement or vitamin, and therefore, you should always consult with your doctor. There have been no known interactions of theanine with other prescriptions or over the counter drugs. Past studies have found that theanine helps improve the efficacy of anti-cancer drugs by enhancing their effectiveness and reducing their side effects. Altogether, once a patient is able to relax mentally,  they will allow their bodies to focus on self-healing.

 

Dr. Jordan and Dr. Jade are offering a FREE consultation to see if taking L-Theanine can work for you. By mentioning this blog you can receive our L-Theanine liquid for 20% off until the 30th of September!! Call today at 847-362-4476.

 

  1. Liu, Zhi-Wei, et al. “L-Theanine Content and Related Gene Expression: Novel Insights into Theanine Biosynthesis and Hydrolysis among Different Tea Plant (Camellia Sinensis L.) Tissues and Cultivars.” Frontiers in Plant Science, Frontiers Media S.A., 7 Apr. 2017, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5383724/.
  2. Nobre, A C, et al. “L-Theanine, a Natural Constituent in Tea, and Its Effect on Mental State.” Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition., U.S. National Library of Medicine, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18296328.
  3. “L-Theanine Uses, Benefits & Side Effects – Drugs.com Herbal Database.” Drugs.com, Drugs.com, www.drugs.com/npc/l-theanine.html.

5 Ways to Boost Your Energy at Work

by Emily Bauer, CMA(AAMA)

I’m not sure about you, but about 3:30 pm every single day my brain decides to turn off and stop working. I tend to get tired and antsy at the same time, which leads to some seriously shameful unproductiveness. Seeing as the boss (as most bosses do), frowns upon dilly dallying till 5 pm, I decided that I needed to find some ways to boost my energy levels. Here’s a few simple ideas that I’ve found help keep you going till the very last second.

1.Get Moving!

Yes, I know it sounds cliche, but seriously. Get up and go to the bathroom, empty your shred pile, or just take a lap around the office! Your body needs occasional movement to change channels and get oxygen flowing. You don’t need to be away from your desk for an hour but little breaks to stretch your legs here or there won’t hurt.Keeping your body warmed up will prepare you for whatever tasks your boss might throw at you.

  1. Eat Well.

I’ll admit that snacking is my weakness. I’ve found that when I sit at my desk and snack all day, I can barely function in the afternoon. Couple that with a large lunch and I’m done for. If this is something you struggle with, try to start strategic eating. Plan a few healthy snacks to get you through the day, my favorite being apples and almonds. Prepare your lunch the night before so you can make sure you won’t end up ordering out for lunch or grabbing something frozen. Don’t let a food coma stop you from reaching your #goals.  There are many additives in food that may be making you drowsy.  Dairy is a big culprit, but to find out for sure it may be time for a food sensitivity test!

  1. Take Your Vitamins at Lunch

If you’re an awesome person then you’re taking your multivitamins. If this is the case, then try taking them with your lunch and see if that makes a difference. I currently take Salutogenic Life’s Life Pack for Women, which has a couple different vitamins including a B vitamin which really helps with energy. If you have  chronic issues with energy (even when you’re not at work), it might be a good idea to contact your practitioner to check your vitamin levels, you might find you have deficiencies such as iron or B12.

  1. Streeeetch!

If you’re a multitasker, this is a good one for you to do while you’re taking your walk! If you can’t get away from your desk and you’re stuck staring at your screen all day, try to slip in a few neck and shoulder stretches. This helps fatigued muscles that have been stuck in one position and may also increase energy by decreasing muscle discomfort. If you’re starting to feel stiff, stretch it out!

  1. Ditch the Coffee.

GASP! Yes, I did just say that. I know coffee is the go to drink when you start to feel the brain turning off, but just hear me out. Two words. Green. Tea. This is such a great source of caffeine without getting the jitters! This allows me to be more productive without bouncing off the walls. Green tea also contains an amino acid called L-theanine that helps the brain. The combination of caffeine and L-theanine leads to improved brain function and the ability to focus. BOOM. I don’t think I need to say more.

So there you have it. I know not everyone has energy issues at work, but for those who do the struggle is real. As I mentioned before, if energy is something that is constantly a problem or if you’re just tired of dealing with it, give our office a call at 847.362.4476 for a free consultation.

Finding the reason for your low energy will allow you to find the proper treatment. Until then, try out these easy tips to help you out through the day!

Oh Cramp! I Got a Spasm!

by Kaity Mclenithan, ATC

Differences Between Muscles Cramps, Spasms, and Soreness

Who has ever woken up in the middle of the night with the dreaded charlie horse cramp in their calf?? We have all heard about it but have you ever wondered why it happens? Listed below are the differences between a muscle cramp, muscle spasm and muscle soreness and how to help deal with and prevent them.

A muscle cramp is an involuntary muscle contraction. Meaning that the muscles fires without your control, and usually lasts for a short period of time.  There are many possible causes for muscles cramps such as: dehydration, electrolyte loss/imbalance, loss of sodium, low levels of magnesium, muscle fatigue, and lack of oxygen.

A muscle spasm is a reflex to something else that is going on in the body or trauma. There are two types of spasms that can take place: clonic and tonic. Clonic is an involuntary contraction that alternates between contraction and relaxation. Tonic is a hard, constant muscle contraction that lasts for a span of time. Muscle spasms can also cause muscle strains.

Muscle soreness is pain caused by overexertion from physical activity. This most commonly happens when people try something new in their exercise routine/new activity or try a new class.  Unfortunately, the older people get the more often this tends to happen. There are two types of soreness acute and delayed-onset.

Acute muscle soreness happens when the muscle is fatigued.  This can happen during or directly after exercise. Delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) occurs 24 to 48 hours after exercise, and usually subsides 3-4 days later.  DOMS can be characterized by increased muscle tension, stiffness and the muscle being resistant to stretching. Possible causes of this can be small tears in the muscle and disruption of the connective tissue of muscle tendon fibers.

 

How To Prevent DOMS

  1. Start with an exercise routine of moderate activity and intensity, and then gradually increasing activity and intensity.
  2. Stay Hydrated. It is imperative to drink water throughout the day, and not just pre and post workout.  Your body will thank you.
  3. Be consistent with your stretching, foam rolling and lacrosse ball.  These increase blood flow to your muscles, decrease knots and trigger points and help prevent lactic acid build up.
  4. Add Branch Chain Amino Acids during and after your workout.  BCAA’s are great to add to your water bottle to improve athletic performance, aid in muscle recovery as well as help preserve lean muscle mass.
  5. Supplement with Magnesium.  Magnesium will help with leg cramps as well as soreness.

 

Making sure you are not depleted in certain minerals such as magnesium and potassium is important as mentioned above. Even with all of the foods we consume throughout the day we still may need a little help. Magnesium helps to relax the muscles and decrease the risk of them cramping as well as other health benefits including relieving constipation! If the muscle seems to not want to relax then you may find other techniques such as massage therapy or graston therapy may help.

If you are having muscle issues and is not sure what can be done, call the office for your FREE consultation at 847-362-4476. Mention this blog to receive 15% off a foam roller or Tiger Tail and also 20% off our magnesium or BCAA supplement today!

Probiotics : What They Are & Why You Need Them

by Kristin Stromberg, ATC

When I started this blog and typed in probiotics into Google, I was overwhelmed with how much information there was about probiotics. From the top 10 brands to warnings about probiotics. With all of that information out there how do you know what is right? Does it really matter which brand to get?

As a matter of fact; yes it does matter where you buy your probiotics. You can refer to a previous blog regarding tiers of vitamins as that applies to probiotics as well.  It is imperative that your probiotics along with any vitamins you take come not only from reputable sources, but that the manufacturers are at a bare minimum cGMP compliant.  At our office, we will only recommend physician grade supplements because they are the most highly regulated on the market.  The manufacturers that we utilize test every batch for quality, safety and effectiveness.  Not only that, but they are free of fillers and binders.  

The question we get asked the most often is, “Why are your probiotics in the fridge and not out with the rest of your vitamin/supplement line? I can get them at Osco, Walgreens or other places right off the shelf.”

Probiotic products contain millions and even billions of live cultures of friendly bacteria and require appropriate handling to maintain their maximum activity during storage. Probiotics are essential to gut health but they also can help with allergies, decrease inflammation, improve auto-immune disorders and more.

The potency of probiotics can be adversely affected by prolonged exposure to high temperature and humidity, water and the amount of air it is exposed to. Don’t forget these are live bacteria!  You should also avoid touching the capsules as much as possible. Pour the desired number of capsules into the cap so that any extra can be put back in the bottle without handling to avoid introducing moisture present on the hands into the product. Always use a clean, dry spoon to measure probiotic powders.

Can probiotics survive if they are not in the fridge at all times? Yes they can. If you are traveling or going to work, putting them in a separate container will be fine. They can be left at room temperature for a few weeks. After that the capsule will start to turn dark brown and they are no longer viable and should be thrown out.

There are some brands that have each probiotic individually wrapped.  Each vegetarian capsule is sealed in nitrogen-purged aluminum blister packs to serve as protection from factors proven to compromise stability of probiotics such as heat, moisture, and oxygen. This is also a great way for each probiotic not to be exposed to each other and you do not have to worry about the whole batch. They are easier to travel with since they do not need to be in the fridge.

Probiotics are essential for gut health and immune health.  They should have AT LEAST 25 billion CFU per capsule or serving.  This is for broad spectrum use, meaning this type is great for basic everyday use.  If we are treating specific conditions such as IBS, colitis, leaky gut, prolonged antibiotic usage, chronic yeast infections and others, we may use a more specific probiotic strain OR a probiotic with over 100 billion CFU per serving.

You can get probiotics from food including, but not limited to yogurt, kefir, kombucha, kimchi and other fermented foods.  We have found in practice that it’s great to get a variety of probiotics.  Adding some of those foods in your diet is a good start, and supplementing with a broad spectrum probiotic is the icing on the cake!

If you have any questions about probiotics please give us a call at 847-362-4476 for a FREE consultation with one of the doctors. Mention this blog to get 20% off probiotic capsules or powder today!

Muscle of the Month: Pec Major & Minor

by Kristin Stromberg, ATC

When people want to start exercising more, one of the first muscles they want to work on is their chest. Most people have heard of large muscle pectoralis major but seem to forget about pectoralis minor. Both need to work together in order to function at their highest capacity.

The pectoralis major muscle is a large muscle in the upper chest, fanning across the chest from the shoulder to the breastbone. The two pectoralis major muscles, commonly referred to as the “pecs,” are the muscles that create the bulk of the chest. The pectorals are predominantly used to control the movement of the arm and also play a part in deep inhalation, pulling the ribcage to create room for the lungs to expand. Six separate sets of muscle fibers are identified within the pectoralis major muscle. This enables each portion of the pectoralis major muscle to be moved separately by the nervous system.

The pectoralis minor is a thin, flat muscle found immediately underneath the pectoralis major. This is the smaller of the two pectoral muscles, or muscles of the chest. This muscle extends from three origins on the third, fourth, and fifth ribs on each side of the ribcage to the coracoid process (a small, hook-like structure) of the scapula, or shoulder blade.

The following events listed below can aggravate the Pec Major:

  • Unusual postures like head leaned forward for a long time, shoulders deliberately pushed forward, sunken-chest posture
  • Sitting in front of computer or working at a stretch on a desk may cause distorted postures
  • Sudden jerks during weight lifting with the arms out in front of the body
  • Already fatigued muscles if further used for heavy jobs may lead to simple to severe pain in the muscles.
  • Intensive anxiety over a long period of time or recurring panic attacks

The following events listed below can aggravate the Pec Minor:

  • Trauma to the chest caused by a car accident, such as whiplash
  • Major or minor fracture or strain of the upper ribs.
  • Use of crutches for a long time
  • Hyperventilation or heavy breathing
  • Mental stress for a long time
  • Carrying heavy backpack or similar things over a period of time.
  • Keeping the head forward for a long time, and sunken-chest posture that are common in people who work on computers for longer periods
  • Previous or irregular cardiac pain from a heart attack or angina pectoris

Here are some common symptoms for Pec Major and Pec Minor:

  • Pectoralis major pain may occur in the form of chest pain, shoulder pain particularly frontal part, and pain in the inside of arm to the elbow. This pain may sometimes be confused as cardiac pain which can be confirmed by medical experts
  • Impaired lymphatic drainage may cause the breast to enlarge
  • Pain may spread into the ring finger and little finger of the hand for pec major
  • A pain in between the shoulder blade may occur simultaneously
  • Pain may be felt while stretching the hands on two sides
  • Severe pain may cause a feeling of constriction in the chest which much resembles to that of angina pectoris
  • Pain may be irregular which is felt while actively using the upper arms
  • Pain may be one-sided initially, but if not treated may spread to the other side of the chest
  • A feeling of pain coming from the inside part of the elbow that is often confused with the pain of “golfer’s elbow” or medial epicondylitis may be a symptom of pec minor
  • Pain that is originating in the inside of the arm and extending up to the middle, ring and little finger may be a symptom of pec minor as well as numbness in the hand and forearm
  • Difficulty in stretching the arm forward and up may be painful

*If you think you are having chest pain and is not sure if it is muscle related or if you are having a heart attack please go to emergency room and/or check in with your medical doctor

If your symptoms are related more to pec major or pec minor here are some things to do.

  • Rest would be very important since these muscle do so much work
  • Icing the area a few times a day for 15-20 minutes at each session
  • Some sort of anti-inflammatory to control the inflammation
  • Treatment at our office would be with Low Level Light Therapy, chiropractic adjustments, physical therapy for stretching and to start implementing an exercises routine. Massage therapy to try and relax the tight and aggravated muscles. As well as a posture program to make sure the correct muscles are working properly

Mention this blog to receive your New Patient exam for only $55!! Call today at 847-362-4476

Supplement of the Month: B12 (Methylcobalamin)

by Kristin Stromberg, ATC

Supplement of the Month: Vitamin B12

One of the typical questions we get asked is, “I went to my doctor and they said from my blood tests that my B12 is low. How do I fix this?” Vitamin B12 goes by many names and one we have in the office is called Methylcobalamin. By sitting down with Dr. Jordan or Dr. Jade they can discuss what the course of treatment can be to get you on track

How do we become deficient in B12?

Your body does not make vitamin B12, so you have to get it from animal-based foods or from supplements. You should do that on a regular basis, because your body doesn’t store vitamin B12 in the liver for a long time. With age, it can become harder to absorb this vitamin. There are a few ways of being deficient:

  1. Not enough intake of B12.  Vegans and vegetarians are at a greater risk due to eliminating certain foods from their diet.
  2. Impaired B12 absorption can be caused by a number of underlying issues, all requiring different treatments. Perhaps the most common problem is pernicious anemia, where your body can no longer produce and secrete an important protein called intrinsic factor (IF).Without IF, your ability to absorb B12 from dietary foods is greatly reduced.
  3. Achlorhydria is a lack of gastric acid in the stomach, which prevents B12 (and various other vitamins) from being absorbed from food effectively. It most often affects the elderly, putting them at greater risk. People suffering from achlorhydria cannot get sufficient B12 because it is bound to proteins in food, and without enough gastric acid, you can’t break it down. Fortunately this is easily treatable with supplements.

What type of food can I get B12 from?

You can get vitamin B12 in animal foods, which have it naturally, or from items that have been fortified with it. Foods high in Vitamin B12 include shellfish, liver, fish, crab, fortified soy products (tofu, soymilk), fortified cereals, red meat, low fat dairy, cheese, and eggs.

It is important to note that B12 is usually found in supplements in the form cyanocobalamin.  This form does not occur naturally in plants or animals.  This type of B12 can be dangerous as your body has to eliminate the cyanide molecule.  Methylcobalamin is not only the safer version of B12, but the most easily absorbed version.

Why do I need to worry if I don’t have enough B12?

A slight deficiency of vitamin B12 can lead to anemia, fatigue, shortness of breath, mania, impaired memory and depression. While a long term deficiency can cause permanent damage to the brain and central nervous system. Vitamin B12 is also important in DNA synthesis.

For the month of June we will be featuring our supplement B12 (Methylcobalamin).  If you have any questions or are concerned you might have a B12 deficiency please call our office at 847-362-4476 to have a FREE consult with either Dr. Jade or Dr. Jordan. Mention this blog to receive 10% of our *supplements.

*while supplies last

 

Muscle of the Month : IT Band

by Kristin Stromberg, ATC
Now that running season is upon us, it is that time again where our local runners are flocking in the door to get treatment on their legs. The infamous Iliotibial band (IT Band) is working overtime and it needs some help!!

What is iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome?

Iliotibial band syndrome (ITBS or IT Band Syndrome) is an overuse injury of the connective tissues that are located on the lateral or outer part of thigh and knee. It causes pain and tenderness in those areas, especially just above the knee joint.  Iliotibial band syndrome is the most common cause of lateral knee pain in runners and bicyclists.

How Does This Muscle Work?

The iliotibial tract is classified as a deep fascia of the body, surrounding and connecting the muscles of the body to surrounding tissues. Like all other deep fascia, it is made almost exclusively of dense regular connective tissue. Dense regular connective tissue is a form of fibrous connective tissue that is extremely strong, tough, and avascular. It is made almost exclusively of collagen fibers and fibroblast cells, which produce collagen. Collagen is the strongest protein found in nature and is one of the strongest structures in the entire human body. The collagen fibers are arranged in a regular pattern of straight lines, giving the iliotibial tract incredible strength in the direction in which muscle force is applied to it and considerably less strength in other directions.

Functionally, the iliotibial tract extends the tensor fascia latae muscle into the lower thigh and leg, allowing it to function as an abductor, medial rotator and flexor of the thigh. It also allows the tensor fascia latae and gluteus maximus muscles to support the extension of the knee while standing, walking, running and biking.

What Can Cause IT Band Symptoms?

Iliotibial band inflammation is an overuse syndrome that occurs most often in long-distance runners, bicyclists, and other athletes who repeatedly squat. The iliotibial band syndrome may be the result of a combination of issues, including poor training habits, poor flexibility of muscle, and other mechanical imbalances in the body, especially involving the low back, pelvis, hips, and knees

What Can I do to treat the IT band??

Treatment can get started as soon as you notice any discomfort.

  1. Icing the area for up to 20 minutes a day a few times a day can help decrease the inflammation.
  2. Using either a Foam Roller, Tiger Tail, or lacrosse ball to work on getting those collagen fibers to relax.   You will want to focus on all muscles of the lower body as most times IT Band Syndrome is caused from issues which stem from the Glutes and hip flexors.  Using any one of these items may not be comfortable in the beginning of treatment and it will take some time to get used to. Over time, the discomfort will go away.
  1. It is important to have regular adjustments to make sure that the low back and hips are in alignment.  
  2. Manual therapy performed such as Graston or working with one of our massage therapists may break up tissue adhesions restricting the bodies ability to heal.
  3. Stretches and specific exercises can be added to your routine at home taught by one our licensed athletic trainers.

If you are not sure if you have IT band syndrome, just give us a call at 847-362-4476 and we can get you ready for the 2017 running season. If you mention this blog you also can get either the Foam roller or Tiger Tail for 15% off!!

Inflammation: A Silent Killer

by Dr. Jade Dellinger

Inflammation is a word that is used often, yet hard to define.  Most of us have a hard time separating inflammation from an ankle sprain vs. inflammation contributing to heart disease and arthritis.  In order to understand how to fight it, it’s important to understand how and why it occurs!

Inflammation is a very common and innate response to an injury, pain or stress.  It is part of our bodies natural defense system to prevent something worse and/or speed up healing time.

Acute inflammation is the first response to an injury or pathogen.  It’s acute because it should only last several days or less.

Examples of what can cause this:

  • Illness (virus, bacteria)
  • Trauma (punch, kick, sprain)
  • Burn
  • Frostbite
  • Allergic Reaction

There are a lot of players involved in the inflammatory process, but the basics are: heat, redness, swelling, and pain.  Thus leading to loss of function.  Acute inflammation is an important part of healing.  Follow your doctors advice for your particular situation and it should pass within a few days.

More importantly….. Chronic inflammation.  Our bodies go haywire when this seemingly harmless acute reaction becomes chronic and systemic.

There are a few things that cause inflammation to be turned “on” at all times.

  • Toxic Diet : High sugar, high fat, high-gluten & processed foods
  • Low Omega-3 Intake: Omega-3’s are necessary to the anti-inflammatory process (in addition high Omega-6 intake is as bad as low omega-3)
  • Lack of Sleep
  • Lack of Movement: Being sedentary is linked to a low-grade inflammatory state.
  • Chronic Stress

Those are just a few!  If any of those listed above are involved in your daily life, it’s time to make some changes.  Those are the pre-cursors to numerous lifestyle illnesses such as arthritis, diabetes, heart failure and more.  Fixing some of those listed can help manage already diagnosed conditions.  INCLUDING CHRONIC PAIN!

Remember we are always available for lifestyle advice and nutritional counseling.  If you are not feeling as happy, healthy or energetic as you want, Dr. Jordan Leasure, D.C. is offering Intro to Functional Medicine Assessments for $50.  Only 10 spots available for this great deal.  Mention code Inflammation to get started on your journey to wellness!  North Shore Pro-Active Health | 847-362-4476 | www.drleasure.com