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Issue: May 2009

In This Issue:
Naturopathic Corner: Get your ZZZZZ's
When and why should you consult a chiropractor?
Stretching 101: Important things to know about stretching
Klean Kanteen® Stainless Steel Water Bottles
Purchase Gift Certificates Over the Phone or Online


Naturopathic Corner: Get your ZZZZZ's

Dr. Samantha Ristimaki, BSc, ND
Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine

samantha ristimakiEveryone requires a good solid sleep to function optimally. Some people need less than the average 8 hours without feeling drowsy while others don’t function at their peak without at least 10 hours of sleep.

Ironically, many people neglect sleep in their efforts to excel at work or other activities. But, lack of sleep can not only negatively impact your performance but also your overall health.

Why do you need it?

  1. Learning & memory: Sleep helps the brain commit new information to memory through a process called memory consolidation. Studies have shown that people who slept after studying a task did better on later tests. Loosing even one sleep session can decrease your cognitive performance by 30%.
  1. Metabolism & weight: Chronic sleep deprivation may cause weight gain by altering your hormone levels that control appetite leaving you more hungry and craving carbohydrate-rich foods. It also changes the way the body processes and stores fat.
  1. Mood: Most people have experienced irritability, impatience and lack of concentration without getting enough sleep. If that’s not enough to shake up your mood, the mood regulating hormone serotonin is also reduced with lack of sleep. Depression rates are higher in people who suffer from insomnia.
  1. Immune function & Disease: Go a few nights without sleep and you may be more likely to get sick. The body uses sleep as a time to heal and repair itself. When the body is in deep sleep, blood vessels dilate and deliver blood and nutrients to tissue, allowing the body to focus on immune function, healing and tissue repair.
  1. Cancer Prevention: Recent studies suggest that melatonin, a hormone that helps to regulate sleep, is actually being linked to prevention of certain cancers. Sleeping in a pitch dark room will help to ensure your body maximizes it’s melatonin production.

Evaluate how much sleep you need by going to bed earlier and trying to get up without an alarm clock. Keeping a regular sleep and exercise schedule can help improve the quality of your slumber. Avoiding caffeine, alcohol, heavy meals or smoking before bed will also make it easier for you to fall asleep faster when your head hits the pillow. Sleep is as much a part of healthy living as diet and exercise – so, sweet dreams.

Please call us at 905.465.4595 for more information
and to book your appointment with Dr. Samantha Ristimaki.

For pricing information please click here.


When and why should you consult a chiropractor?

Dr. Shima Shahidy, (Hon) B.Sc., DC
Chiropractor, Acupuncture & Graston Technique Provider shima shahidy DC

The answer is anytime and for anything! Chiropractors are primary contact doctors which means you can consult them without a referral and for almost any health related condition. Although their focus is on treating conditions relating to the musculoskeletal system (that is the muscles, bones, joints, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, nerves, and other connective tissue), they can often have an effect on the symptoms of other chronic diseases which may have no cure or are controlled by medication. They are trained to read lab reports, x-rays, MRI's and can often refer you to the correct healthcare provider or give you more information about medications and treatment options.

Perhaps you haven't considered how you or your family may benefit from chiropractic care. From the day we are born, our body experiences certain stresses. Newborns for example can experience some serious trauma during birth which can lead to difficulty in movement, eating, and breathing. Depending on the circumstances of birth, some newborns exhibit postural problems, refuse to move certain body parts, cry excessively or have trouble feeding. This is a clue that there may be something wrong. Their young bodies respond extremely well to gentle and age appropriate manual care.

Adolescents often experience "growing pains" as their bodies change. This is a perfect time to have a postural check to rule out things like scoliosis, which when caught early, can allow for greater intervention. It's also an excellent time for good dialogue with your child and the chiropractor about preventative health, nutrition and exercise, helping to form healthy habits from a young age.

Many chronic diseases have musculoskeletal side effects. Aches and pains accompany everything from the common cold to those living with HIV/AIDS. People suffering from asthma for example will often present with tightness in muscles responsible for breathing. Manual therapy can help relax these muscles and allow for easier breathing, fewer attacks and perhaps make it possible for the patient to take less medication. In many cases of chronic disease, it's a matter of improving quality of life. Chiropractic care can help decrease certain symptoms and side effects, allowing for increased function, less lost time at work and greater enjoyment of daily life.

Please call us at 905.465.4595 for more information
and to book your appointment with Dr. Shima Shahidy.

For pricing information please click here.


Stretching 101: Important things to know about stretching

Kata Begovits, RMT
Registered Massage Therapist

Kata Begovits RMTBenefits:

We all know the importance of stretching before and after sport activities, but did you know that stretching on a daily basis for just 10-15 minutes can keep the body years younger? Not to mention, it has many other great benefits aside from helping you prevent pulled muscles.

So here are a few:

• flexibility
• circulation to muscles and joints thus,
• energy levels as more blood is taken to areas of stagnation as well as all major organ systems including the brain resulting in more alertness and mental clarity
• range of motion in joints as muscles attached to those joints are lengthened

• tension in muscles caused by mental, emotional or physical stress

• muscular coordination – as muscles become less tight they function much easier allowing contract, relax states to operate smoother

• performance in daily life, sports or any physical activity

• posture – forward head and rounded shoulder posture is very common in today’s society as more and more of us spend far too much time sitting in front of a computer, in our cars and on the couch at which time we are giving our muscles the opportunity to slowly shrink up, tighten up and eventually adapt to that state

How often should you stretch?

Stretching should be done on a daily basis for at least 10-15 minutes. But before you begin it is always important to warm up your muscles first. A 5 minute warm up of running on the spot or jumping jacks is sufficient to warm up the muscles enough to prevent injury. Stretching a cold muscle is like stretching a cold rubber band which is more likely to break than one that is warm.

The general guideline for holding a stretch is usually 15-30 seconds. However this is insufficient as muscles require time to send the message to the brain and for the brain to respond instructing the muscle to begin relaxing. A stretch should be held for at least 1-2 minutes. This gives the muscle fibers enough time to slowly begin stretching and actually retain that position in their memory so the muscles stay lengthened even after the stretch stimulus has been ended.

You also need time to consciously let go of the tension in your body as people tend to tense up when they begin stretching as it can be uncomfortable when the muscle is taken beyond a range it is used to. Breathing deeply is a great tool to help you relax and focus. This will ensure a greater lengthening with less effort.

You should also keep in mind that if a stretch hurts you have gone too far. Be gentle and patient with your body and give yourself enough time to complete a full stretch without tearing fibers. If you are in pain you are most likely doing more harm than good. Pain is always your body's May Day signal that something is wrong and needs your attention.

I put together a little routine that I like to start my day with. Enjoy and have fun...

And remember... "Be kind to your body and your body will be kind to you!"

Morning or Afternoon stretch routine:

~ Begin with a quick 5 minute warm up. You can run on the spot, do jumping jacks, some squats, forward lunges, anything really that gets your heart rate up and your blood circulating.

~ Sit on a floor where you will be comfortable with 1 leg stretched out in front of you and the other relaxed (on a yoga mat if you have one or a carpeted area if not)

~ Start the stretch routine with your hamstrings (it is usually the tightest muscle on most people) and so this stretch should be held for 2-3 minutes per side.

~ Be sure to keep the back of your knee flat on the floor not allowing it to bend (I usually put one forearm across my quad just above the knee to keep any "accidental" cheating to happen)

~ Once you have stretched out your hams, find a chair or wall to hang onto for balance to stretch your quads. Quads are usually not as tight as hams so 60-90 seconds per side are usually enough. Bring your heel to your buttock and hold.

~ For this short routine you're already done with the lower body. The next most important muscle group to stretch is your neck muscles. Most people experience headaches, migraines, neck pain, jaw pain and a myriad of other symptoms regularly all related to tension in the cervical and facial muscles. To combat these annoying symptoms daily stretching of the cervical muscles can lend a helping hand.

~ Begin with a chin tuck (chin to chest). Now the key here is to gently help the stretch along by pushing on the back of your head until you feel a good but pain free pull and you will know you are doing it right if you feel this stretch all the way down to your mid back. Again hold this for 1-2 minutes.

~ What you do in one direction you must do in the opposite as well. You will instinctively want to anyway. Bring your head back, looking up to the ceiling, but be sure to sit down for this one as you may get dizzy. Hold for 30 seconds or less.

~ Now bring one ear to your shoulder and hold. Play with the angles here. You will notice if you slightly also tilt your head back a little the pull will be felt a bit more in the front. If you rotate your head a bit forward you will feel the pull behind your ear and at the side/back of your neck.

~ The only thing to remember when stretching the neck is changing the angles as you will feel some angles pulling more than others as the different muscles in your neck are being stretched. But the most important thing is stretch your neck for a good 5-6 minutes or longer. Listen to your body it will let you know when it's had enough!

Take the 1 week stretch challenge and feel the difference 10-15 minutes a day can make. You will feel younger, less stiff and more energized and centered. Always keep in mind that you are doing this for you and you deserve those few minutes each day. So stop making excuses and start stretching!!!

Please call us at 905.465.4595 for more information
and to book your appointment with Kata.

For pricing information please click here.


Klean Kanteen® Stainless Steel Water Bottles

klean kanteenKlean Kanteen® eco-friendly, durable, bpa-free reusable stainless steel water bottles are now available at Wellness for the Body

Why Klean Kanteen?
Klean Kanteen® provides choices that promote healthy living with respect for the environment. We believe that we can transform the world in which we live by promoting environmental awareness and conservation.

Recent studies have shown that many plastic water bottles including Lexan® bottles, leach toxins, such as Bisphenol A (BPA). These studies have linked BPA to breast cancer and reproductive mutations.

Good Health Is In Your Future
The stainless steel in your Kanteen is the high quality food-grade stainless steel that goes through an electropolishing process to smooth the surface. Klean Kanteen stainless is 100 percent non-leaching and toxin free, making it a safe, healthy alternative to plastic or lined metal containers.

Please call us at 905.465.4595 for more information
or visit www.wellnessforthebody.com/kleankanteen.html.


Purchase Gift Certificates Over the Phone or Online

Now purchasing the gift of health couldn't be any easier! Gift certificates may be purchased over the phone or online for any dollar amount, and can be sent to you by regular mail or email within 2 business days.

For more information call - 905.465.4595