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Gibson Chiropractic Family Health Center
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Gibson Chiropractic Family Health Center's posts

Reminder:

The Gibson Chiropractic Family Health Center will be closed for Christmas Break from Monday, December 22nd, 2014 to Friday, December 26th, 2014.

On Monday, December 29th, 2014, we will return to our normal office hours of Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:30AM to 1PM, 3PM to 6PM.

From Dr. Gibson and his staff, we hope you all have a wonderful and merry Christmas!

Chiropractic Care and Ongoing Good Health

Optimal health and well-being depend on more than a consistently good diet and regular vigorous exercise. Regular chiropractic care is needed to derive the maximum benefit from these key ingredients of health.

A properly functioning nerve system is required to efficiently digest, metabolize, and use the nutrition you’re obtaining in your daily diet. Similarly, your muscles, joints, and bones need to receive a proper nerve supply to effectively perform all the elements of your exercise routine, including cardiovascular activities and strength training. All your body systems must receive and send accurate, timely information so that your body works well as a unified whole. Your body’s master system, the nerve system, makes this possible. Regular chiropractic care helps ensure that your nerve system is functioning at peak efficiency. The result, in combination with the other health-promoting action steps you’re taking, helps ensure high levels of health and well-being over the long-term.

To learn more, please visit www.gibsonchiropractic.com.

Entropy, the Gym, and You

Let’s say you’ve been taking some time off from the gym. Maybe you reached the end of your 12-week training cycle and you’re taking a week off. It’s possible that one week turns into two or even three or four weeks. Life happens, you need to attend to some pressing matters, and going to the gym starts to take a back seat. Before you know it, two or three months have passed by. Suddenly, you’re no longer a person who goes to the gym, but a person who needs to figure out a way to get back to the gym on a regular basis. “What happened to me?” you wonder. “Where did the time go?” Now you have to actually exert effort to fit “workout time” into your schedule. You scratch your head and ponder. “I thought I had this all covered,” you think, not for the first time.

What happened to you and your well-made plans was entropy, that insidious force in the universe that turns order into disorder. The basic rule is that any organized system, left unattended, will immediately begin to break down. As a mundane example, those piles of papers on your desk keep reaccumulating as a result of entropy. The weeds in your garden? Entropy. The dust bunnies in your attic and basement? Entropy. The collapse of your plan for doing regular workouts? Entropy.

What’s worse, entropy takes a serious toll on your physical fitness. If you miss enough time from the gym, all your fitness gains begin to melt away. First, your muscles begin to lose their stores of energy. Glycogen, the complex sugar that supplies energy for muscle work, is broken down for use elsewhere. Arterioles and capillaries, small blood vessels that were needed to supply nutrients to your growing muscles, are no longer required and rapidly disappear. Muscle fibers that were continually added to support your exercise activities are cannibalized, so that their constituent parts may be used for other physiological processes. Entropy launches a process of randomization that breaks down your carefully built-up muscular structure. Your body, being very smart, metaphorically swoops in and moves all those metabolic components to other structures and systems for more efficient use.

The superficial result is loss of muscle definition. The deeper result is loss of muscle tone. Your cardiorespiratory system (heart and lungs), digestive system, and metabolism are all affected, as these physiologic systems are no longer required to be functioning at peak to support a regular vigorous exercise program. Entropy sets in to all these systems, as well. The overall result is a profound impact on your health and well-being.

The good news is we can help keep entropy at bay. But doing so requires attention and determination. We want to attend to our bodies as carefully and regularly as we attend to the environment of our home, office, and garden. Just as our cars, motorcycles, and bicycles require periodic maintenance, our bodies require much more frequent care, care on a daily and weekly basis. It’s fine to occasionally skip a week or two, or even a month if needed, of exercise. But we must make sure we get right back on schedule to ensure benefits to our short-term and long-term health.

To learn more, please visit www.gibsonchiropractic.com.

The Gibson Chiropractic Family Health Center will be closed for Christmas Break from Monday, December 22nd, 2014 to Friday, December 26th, 2014.

On Monday, December 29th, 2014, we will return to our normal office hours of Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9:30AM to 1PM, 3PM to 6PM.

From Dr. Gibson and his staff, we hope you all have a wonderful and merry Christmas!

Chiropractic Care Optimizes the Benefits of Exercise

Cross-training places numerous physiological demands on your cardiorespiratory and musculoskeletal systems, as well as on your digestive, hormonal, and immune systems. These demands are necessary for your ongoing health and well-being, following both the principle of "use it or lose it" and Wolff's Law (bone remodels along lines of physiological stress).

But in order to maximize our cross-training gains, we want to make sure that our body's underlying structure is intact. Our various physiological systems must be able to communicate with each other efficiently, and each system must be able to receive and transmit information to the master system, the nerve system. Regular chiropractic care helps ensure these necessary interactions are taking place, consistently and over time. By detecting and correcting spinal misalignments and by removing nerve interference, regular chiropractic care helps optimize all physiological functioning and helps you get the most out of your cross-training activities.

To learn more, please visit www.gibsonchiropractic.com.

The Power of Cross-Training

Cross-training refers to a combination of different methods of exercise. Specifically, cross-training refers to the combination of strength training and cardiovascular training in your overall exercise program. Whether you're a 14-year-old just starting out on your first fitness program, or whether you're a 74-year-old who hasn't exercised in more than 40 years, cross-training will provide optimal results for the time and effort you spend on exercise.

In cross-training, it's not that you're doing aerobic and strength-training activities simultaneously. Rather, you're incorporating both methods in your weekly exercise regime. One week you might do three sessions of strength training and two sessions of cardiovascular activity. The next week you could do three sessions of aerobic exercise and two sessions of strength training. The result is that, overall, approximately half of your exercise time is devoted to each of these two methods.

The remarkable outcome of combining two distinctly different training modes is that both sets of results are enhanced. Doing cardiovascular exercise on alternate days makes you stronger. In other words, your muscular strength and size are greater than they would be if strength training were your only form of exercise. Correspondingly, doing strength training on alternate days provides you with heightened cardiovascular gains. Specifically, your stroke volume (the amount of blood pumped on each contraction of your heart muscle) and vital capacity (the amount of air you can take in on each breath) are greater than the results you would have obtained by only doing aerobic exercise.

The benefits of cross-training are automatic. There's nothing you need to do intentionally to achieve these gains, other than engaging in your cross-training program five days a week. When you train your heart and lungs by doing cardiovascular (really, cardiorespiratory) exercise, your skeletal muscles automatically participate in your walking, running, biking, or swimming activity. When you do strength training, exercising your chest, back, shoulders, arms, and legs (on different split-training days, of course), your heart and lungs automatically participate, pumping the extra blood and breathing in the extra oxygen required for any vigorous physical activity.

The synergy created by the cross-training format potentiates the results obtained from each method. The improved performance of your heart and lungs, derived from aerobic training, enables greater strength training gains. A stronger musculoskeletal system, derived from training with weights, causes your heart and lungs to become more efficient to meet new demands. A positive feedback loop is established from which you obtain improved health and enhanced wellness and well-being.

The best time to begin your new cross-training program is today. Start slowly, increase duration and intensity gradually, and evaluate your gains at 6- and 12-week intervals. Your chiropractor is experienced in exercise rehabilitation and will help you design a cross-training program that works for you.

To learn more, please visit www.gibsonchiropractic.com.

Heavy Lifting

All of us who’ve experienced a back injury of one sort or another have been told at some point to “avoid heavy lifting.” That type of advice appears to be a no-brainer or at least redundant, as no one whose back is hurting is going to try to pick up an air conditioner or even a 100-foot reel of garden hose. In this context, it’s important to remember the words of Shakespeare’s Cassius: “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves”. The problem isn’t the heavy lifting, as such. The real problem is in us, that is, in our overall level of conditioning or physical fitness.

Most back injuries don’t occur as a result of heavy lifting, but rather are caused by a seemingly innocuous event such as bending over in the shower to retrieve a bar of soap that has fallen to the floor. Other likely pain-producing scenarios are bending over to place a bag of groceries in the trunk of a car bending over to tie a loose shoelace. None of these circumstances involved lifting extraordinary weight. Rather, the common elements are lack of flexibility and lack of appropriate muscle tone and strength to support the weight of your body in a forward flexed position.

The problem isn’t lack of big muscles. Picking up a bar of soap or positioning a 15-pound grocery bag doesn’t require bulging biceps or massive lats. The problem is lack of conditioning. Most of us no longer do actual physical work on a regular basis. We spend the large majority of our day sitting, either working, reading, or watching entertainment on television or other devices. The result of such lack of activity is twofold. Muscles lose strength and muscle fibers are replaced by fat. Additionally, tendons and ligaments contract and become tight, losing their necessary composition of elastic fibers. The functional loss associated with these physiological changes is profound. We experience these change every time we feel a twinge, or worse, in our backs.

The fix is easy and primarily focuses on building up core muscle strength. Core training is directed toward your deep abdominal muscles. The main such muscle is the transverses abdominis, which surrounds your entire waist, protecting and supporting your lower back. You can think of this critically important structure as your internal weight belt. Activation of the core muscles is required for all effective physical activity. Without this essential foundation, any minor attempt at work, even bending over to pick up a pencil, can lead to disaster in the form of excruciating back pain.

Core training includes exercises such as the scorpion, lying windmill with bent legs, pushups, squats, and the plank. Many good books and numerous online videos are available to provide instruction in the performance of core exercises. Your chiropractor is experienced in rehabilitative exercise and will help guide you to the training methods that are best for you.

To learn more, please visit www.gibsonchiropractic.com.

Preventive Care is the Best Care

In health care, an ounce of prevention is worth very much more than a pound of cure. If you can prevent health problems from happening, you save a great deal of time, effort, and money. Also, by avoiding the frequently ongoing stress and anxiety associated with treatment of a chronic illness, you and your family conserve precious, irreplaceable personal resources such as peace of mind.

A comprehensive preventive care program incorporates a healthy food plan, consistent regular exercise, and regular chiropractic care. Regular chiropractic care, focusing on the spinal column and targeting nerve interference, is a key resource in your health care program. Regular chiropractic care provides the framework so that your body can function at peak efficiency, thus helping ensure your long-term health and well-being.

To learn more, please visit www.gibsonchiropractic.com.

The Gibson Chiropractic Family Health Center will be closed on Thursday, November 27th, 2014 and Friday November 28th, 2014 for Thanksgiving Break.

On Monday, December 1st, 2014, we will return to our normal office hours of 9:30AM to 1PM, 3PM to 6PM on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. We do not have office hours on Thursdays.

From Dr. Gibson and his staff, we hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Health Statistics and You

We are awash in numbers, thanks in large part to the proliferation of personal mobile devices and the wrong-headed use of so-called big data. But applying statistical tools to the same set of data can support competing theories and lead to contradictory results. Such conflicting outcomes, known as antinomies if you remember Philosophy 101, cannot logically co-exist, and the field of statistics gets a bad reputation as a result. But big data can provide substantial value for people as individual patients. The key is to set some ground rules and understand the limitations of statistical investigation.

First and foremost, it's important to gain some clarity regarding the concept of false positives in regards to health. This statistical construct is familiar to all of us, although we may not be aware of it. If one of your doctors sends you for a laboratory test and the results are "positive", you'll be sent for follow-up tests until a final determination is made. If the final test turns out "negative", then the earlier results represented a false positive. The test results said you had the condition or disease, but in fact you did not.

False positives create numerous serious problems, not the least of which is the emotional toll of stress, anxiety, and fear experienced by the patient and her family and close friends. This is especially true when the suspected disease is a malignancy or other serious, life-threatening condition. It's useful and empowering for people to learn that 5% of all test results are falsely positive right from the start. Medical tests are designed this way. The 5% false positive rate is a necessary part of statistical analysis. It's built-in to the statistical design. In other words, test values that represent "normal" are obtained by cutting off the bottom 2.5% and the top 2.5% of a large sample of results from people who are "normal" for the thing being tested, such as white blood cell count or hemoglobin level.

Thus, 5% of normal people automatically have false positive results. Another way of stating this outcome is to consider that if you undergo a panel of 20 blood tests, one result (5% of 20) will be positive no matter what.

The vast majority of patients are not familiar with the statistical concept of false positive results. With a basic understanding of this construct and its implications, patients could ask their doctors meaningful questions such as, "What do the test results mean?,", "Have you considered the possibility of a false positive result?," and "How will the additional tests you're recommending affect decision-making in my case?"

Posing such questions is tremendously empowering for you, the patient, and helps reestablish equity in the doctor-patient relationship. As a health care consumer, a little knowledge goes a long way. Gaining more than a little knowledge by reading articles on diagnostic methods and health care decision-making will further strengthen your own process as a patient.

To learn more, please visit www.gibsonchiropractic.com.
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