Usually referred to as “salad greens,” green leafy lettuce is most often served raw and as the foundation for your favorite salad. There are several variations of this crunchy favorite and different types can add quite a bit of texture and flavor to any dish. There are four general categories of lettuce. There is loose-leaf, butterhead, crisphead, and romaine.
The most common type of crisphead is iceberg lettuce. The round head is comprised of tightly packed leaves. Butterheads are also round but the leaves are looser and smoother than crisphead types. Romaine has elongated leaves with thick white ribs, and loose-leaf lettuce are gathered loosely, growing as rosettes that allow the grower to gather the leaves rather than the entire plant.
When it comes to the amazing health benefits of this green leafy treats, the thing to remember is, the greener the leaf, the more nutrients it provides. The varieties all contain high amounts of vitamins A, K, and C. The vitamin A comes in the form of carotenoids, beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. Beta-carotene is important for normal vision and supports the immune system. It also helps skin form a barrier, protecting you against bacteria. One cup of this incredible veggie contains 88% of the recommended daily intake for vitamin A!
Vitamin K is important for blood coagulation, essential to the seven proteins that work together to help keep you from continually bleeding when you sustain an injury. Vitamin C protects cells throughout your body. This powerful antioxidant kills free radicals that harm cells. This means that it protects you from inflammation, illnesses, arthritis, and cardiovascular disease.
So, thank your body and your soul by getting yourself some incredible leafy greens today! To help you, your favorite chiropractor in Williamsburg, VA, Pinto Chiropractic & Rehabilitation wants to encourage you to try one of our favorite recipes using some of our favorite leafy greens. Check out the recipe below.
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1/2 to 1 teaspoon of hot sauce
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Wash and dry your leafy greens. Tear the lettuce and dump it into a large bowl along with your chopped apple pieces, nuts and dried cherries. Drizzle about 1/2 cup Buttermilk-Kick Dressing and toss together. You can add more or less as you like.
Add your buttermilk, sour cream, mayonnaise, vinegar, chives, garlic, hot sauce, salt and pepper to taste to a quart size mason jar. Cover with the lid and shake it until all of your ingredients are well combined.
Give it a twist! To make this dressing blue cheese, crumble in 1/2cup of crumbled blue and mash with a fork.
Backpack safety sounds like something an over-protective mother would worry about. However, the weight of a child’s backpack is a big deal. We see them hanging in the stores right when Back to School season begins. They come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and come covered in your child’s favorite characters.
They are amazing tools that are incredibly helpful when they are used correctly. They are better than shoulder bags, messenger bags, or purses, because they use the strong muscles from the back and abdominals to support the weight. When they are worn correctly, weight is distributed evenly, preventing shoulder and neck injuries.
However, when weighed down with too many books, papers, and supplies, these handy bags can strain muscles and joints, causing pain. Doctors and physical therapists recommend that kids only carry backpacks that weigh no more than 10-15% of their body weight. Sadly, many kids carry much more than that.
This kind of weight carried year after year causes damage. When worn incorrectly on the shoulders, the weight can pull your child backward. To compensate, many kids bend forward at the hips or arch their back. This makes the spine compress unnaturally and can lead to issues in the shoulders, neck, and back. Wearing the backpack over just one shoulder forces your child to lean to one side to offset the weight of the backpack. This leads to strain on the upper and lower back, placing unnatural strain on the shoulders and neck.
So, we at Pinto Chiropractic & Rehabilitation encourage you to advocate for your child. If you feel that your child is carrying too much in their backpack, talk to them. Find out if they are making the choice to carry unnecessary items in their bags. If their teachers or administration has unrealistic expectations of what your child should carry, advocate for them.
Your child has a bright, beautiful future. Protect it!
If you have questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to us at Pinto Chiropractic & Rehabilitation below, or call our office at 757-645-9022.
Many people seek chiropractic care when their back goes out or their neck tightens up. But how does this form of care actually work? What are the benefits of receiving chiropractic care for nerve dysfunction compared with other healthcare options? Let’s take a look!
First, let’s discuss how the nervous system “works.” We have three divisions of the nervous system: the central, peripheral, and autonomic nervous systems. The central nervous system (CNS) includes the brain and spinal cord, and it’s essentially the main processing portion of the nervous system. The spinal cord is like a multi-lane highway that brings information to the brain for processing (sensory division) and returns information back to the toes, feet, legs, and upper extremities from which the information originated (motor division). For example, hiking on a mountain trail or simply walking requires constant input to and from the CNS so we can adjust our balance accordingly and not fall. These “sensory-motor pathways” are essential and allow us to complete our daily tasks in an efficient, safe manner as information is constantly bouncing back and forth between the brain and the rest of the body.
The peripheral nervous system (PNS) includes a similar sensory/motor “two-way street” system relaying information back and forth from our toes/feet/legs and fingers/hands/arms to the spinal cord (CNS). And if this isn’t complicated enough, we also have “reflexes” that, for example, allow us to QUICKLY pull our hand away from a hot stove to minimize burning our fingers.
Reflexes allow the information to “skip” the brain’s processing part so quicker reactions can occur. The autonomic nervous system (ANS) includes the sympathetic and parasympathetic divisions that basically “run” our automatic (organ) functions like breathing, heart rate, digestion, hormonal output, and more. There is constant communication between the ANS, PNS, and CNS that allow us to function in a normal, balanced way… unless something disrupts them.
There are obvious conditions that interfere with this communication process that include (but are not limited to) diabetes (with neuropathy), frost bitten or burned fingers, peripheral nerve damage from conditions like carpal/cubital tunnel syndromes, thoracic outlet syndrome, and/or pinched nerves in the neck, mid-back, low-back spinal regions, as well as conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS), Guillain-Barre Syndrome, after a stroke (spinal cord or brain), and after trauma with resulting fractures where nerve, spinal cord, and/or brain damage can occur. These are “obvious” reasons for delayed or blocked neurotransmission.
There are many other less obvious injuries or conditions that can result in faulty neuromotor patterns and nerve transmission of which chiropractic services can benefit. The “subluxation complex” is a term some chiropractors use to describe the compromised nerve transmission that may occur if a nerve is compressed or irritated due to faulty bone or joint position along the nerve’s course. Reducing such nerve compression typically allows for a restoration of function. A good illustration of this is a patient who suffers from a herniated disk in the neck with numbness and tingling down the arm to the hand. The goal of treatment (for all healthcare professionals) is to remove the pinch of the nerve.
To realize this goal, doctors of chiropractic utilize spinal manipulation and mobilization in addition to other non-surgical, non-drug approaches that may include exercises, nutritional advice, home-care such as a cervical traction unit, and other anti-inflammatory measures (ice, modalities like low level and class IV laser, electric stimulation, pulsed magnetic field, and more). Given the minimal side-effect risks and well-reported benefits, it only makes sense to try chiropractic FIRST and if you’re not satisfied, your doctor will help you find the next level of care.
Low back pain (LBP) is one of the most common ailments that chiropractors treat. That’s probably because MOST of us will suffer from low back pain that requires outside help at some point in our lives! Posture has long been studied as a potential cause of low back pain, and this month’s topic will take a closer look at some recent research discussing this issue.
A December 2014 study looked at low back posture in two groups of LBP patients and its relationship with problems associated with intervertebral disk diseases. Looking at a person from the side, have you noticed that the low back area has an arched or inward curve? This is called the “lumbar lordosis” (or, the “sway back” area), and this can be highly variable in terms of the angle or amount of arch. It normally differs between males and females. Degenerative disk disease (DDD) is a common condition affecting virtually all of us at some point in time. DDD results in narrowing of the disk spaces, which there are five total in the lumbar spine (twelve in the thoracic spine/mid-back, and six in the cervical spine/neck).
One particular study evaluated a group of 50 patients with long-term intractable (chronic) low back pain with intervertebral disk disease and a group of 50 chronic LBP patients without DDD that served as a “control group.” Researchers measured the degrees of lordosis, or amount of curve (lumbar lordosis), by looking at the person from the side using two different methods in the two patient groups and compared the data. The group with degenerative disk disease had an overall reduction in the lumbar lordosis curve (less arched) using both methods of measuring. The authors concluded that the patients with intervertebral disk lesions had a straighter, or more flat curve (less sway back), when compared to those without disk degeneration. What they were unable to determine was which came first, the disk degeneration or the reduction in the lumbar lordosis?
This study points out several important points. When treating patients with low back pain, some patients feel better when placed in a bent forwards position, or they favor a flat low back curve. Others have the opposite response, or their position of preference favors a more curved (arched) lower spine. The reason for this difference is that LBP is generated from different tissues in the low back, and some tissues favor or feel better in one position and typically feels worse in the opposite direction when injured. The intervertebral disks in the spine lie between the vertebral bodies and serve as “shock absorbers” for the spine and trunk. The center, or “nucleus,” of the disk is liquid-like and is usually well contained inside the disk, held by a tough, outer fibrocartilage material (the “annulus”).
The disk is approximately 80% water, and as we age, the water content gradually reduces and the disk spaces narrow, thus limiting the mobility of that part of the spine. More importantly, DDD usually narrows the size of the canals through which the spinal cord and nerve roots travel. When we bend forward, these canals open up wider placing less pressure on the nerves and/or spinal cord.
This is why we often see elderly people leaning on grocery carts when shopping, as it hurts less and they can walk longer / farther. Those with herniated disks tend to be the opposite, as they favor bending backwards as this position shifts the nucleus or liquid center forwards and away from the nerve root thus reducing the pinched nerve resulting in less or complete elimination of radiating leg pain.
Apples are the most cultivated and consumed fruit on the planet. They are continuously being praised as a miracle food. You already know apples are sweet, tart, crisp or soft, and highly versatile. But what makes them incredible goes way beyond your pallet.
Apples have been ranked in Medical News Today’s top 10 healthy foods because they are rich in antioxidants, flavonoids, and dietary fiber. The antioxidants help reduce the risk of cancer, hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes.
A 2006 study found that the antioxidant, quercetin, found abundantly in apples, is one of the two compounds found to reduce the death of cells that is caused by oxidation and inflammation of neurons. Another study suggests that apple juice consumption may improve the release of neurotransmitters that have reduced the symptoms of Alzheimer-like symptoms in mice.
These nutritional powerhouses contain almost no fat, sodium or cholesterol. They are packed with Vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that has been shown to block damage caused by free radicals. Vitamin C also boosts your immune system, boosting your resistance against infectious disease. Apples are also high in B-complex vitamins like riboflavin, thiamine, and B-6. These incredible vitamins are key in maintaining your nervous system and red blood cells.
Foods this high in dietary fiber are also credited with helping prevent the development of diseases related to high cholesterol and blood pressure.
So, thank your body and your soul by getting yourself a bag of apples today! To help you, your favorite chiropractor in Williamsburg, VA, Pinto Chiropractic & Rehabilitation wants to encourage you to try one of our favorite recipes using apples. Check out the recipe below.
1/2 cup liquid egg whites or 2 egg whites, lightly beaten
6 Granny Smith apples
1/2 cup orange juice
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
Optional toppings: maple syrup and Greek-style yogurt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Combine your steel cut oats, sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a small saucepan. Add water and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 25 minutes or until water is absorbed. Turn off heat. Add a few spoonfuls of cooked oats to egg whites to temper egg whites; gradually whisk tempered egg whites into oats.
While your oats simmer, trim a small slice off the top of each apple. Using a melon baller, scoop out stem and core of each apple, making hole slightly wider at the top. Be carefully not to break through the bottom of the apple, or the filling will leak out when baking. Place your apples in a 2-quart baking dish.
Divide oat mixture evenly among each apple and top with your chopped walnuts. Pour the orange juice into pan around the apples. Cover and bake for 1 hour.
Serve these delicious baked apples warm, drizzled with sauce from pan and additional toppings as desired.
Feel free to post a picture of your attempt at this incredible way to eat your Apple a Day!
Chiropractic doctors start the path to their career with a bachelors degree in pre-med science. They then attend chiropractic school for an additional four years. The programs are rigorous and require students to obtain a full and deep knowledge of the human body through classes and clinical training. Doctors of chiropractic work with your primary care physician to develop a plan that will help you get healthy and stay healthy.
Therefore, the medical community today formally recognizes the value of chiropractic care, and medical doctors routinely acknowledge chiropractic care as a conservative treatment option for patients with lower back pain. Moreover, many medical doctors recognize a chiropractic diagnosis and accept it as the first line of treatment for functional disorders of the entire musculoskeletal system.
The prestigious Texas Back Institute (TBI), the largest freestanding spine specialty clinic in the country, once included only surgeons and other medical doctors among its staff. In the late 1980s, the Institute hired its first doctor of chiropractic. Today, close to half of the Institute’s patients see a chiropractor first when beginning their treatment. The National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, and the successful Complementary and Alternative Medicine Center at the National Institutes of Health have established chiropractic internship programs.
Pinto Chiropractic & Rehabilitation, your favorite Williamsburg Chiropractor, will work with your primary care physician to help you reach your optimal health goals. Call today to make your appointment! 757-2645-9022
Because the spinal cord is housed by the spine and the exiting nerve roots communicate with the autonomic nerves that basically run our organ function, maintaining alignment of the spine and pelvis is very important to minimize nerve irritation and subsequent health-related problems. The focus of this article is on leg length, its effect on our posture, methods of assessment, and treatment.
Leg length plays and important role in posture. When there is a difference in leg length, the pelvis cannot maintain a level position, and because the spine’s base is the pelvis, it cannot stay straight if there is a leg length discrepancy.
Doctors of all disciplines realize the importance of leg length, especially orthopedic surgeons as they consider a hip or knee replacement! There are many causes of leg length issues, and some include a genetic predisposition (inherited) or trauma during bone growth years.
From a treatment standpoint, a heel lift (with or without arch supports) can be placed into the shoe on the short leg side. Unfortunately, there is not a 1 to 1 mm correction of the leg length deficiency with heel lifts. In adults, it has been reported that about a 66% correction occurs, which means a 10 mm lift would result in around a 6.6mm leg length deficiency correction.
Many doctors have found that it is usually wise to GRADUALLY increase the amount of heel lifting, and so patients often start with a 5mm lift and at one week intervals, increase it to the next height, such as 7mm, followed by 9mm, and so on. At 12mm (0.5”), problems with the heel lift being pushed out of the shoe and/or sliding forwards in the shoe may prohibit the use of these thicker lifts after which point the bottom of the shoe can be built up by a shoe cobbler (some services can be found online as well).
The new school year is well into action. It’s a time of joy, new beginnings, and possible new injury risks. Here are some tips to stack the odds in your family’s favor.
Healthy school lunches and healthy exercise together are an opportunity to protect your child’s heart, decrease future diabetes and arthritis risks. Healthy exercise can be as simple as a daily walk, and innovative communities have established safe walking routes to and from school. Children should travel in groups, and need to be aware of traffic and potential human hazards. Should your child choose more intense forms of exercise such as recreational or organized sports, be sure they do so safely.
Another major risk to your children’s safety is right behind them: their backpacks. Heavy backpacks can cause growing frames to experience temporary backaches, joint pain, even muscle strains and headaches; and some children may begin a lifetime of these problems. Here’s a simple tip: Weigh your child, and then weigh his or her backpack. Only 4% of parents do this simple test, yet the children of those “4 percenters” carry the lighter backpacks. If you care about your child’s health and well-being -- and you know you do -- pull out the scale, and use it. A child’s daily backpack shouldn’t weigh more than 10% of total body weight, and some sources suggest a maximum of 5-10%. Simply put, your 100 pound child’s backpack should weigh under 10 pounds. For a 150 pound child, 15 pounds is the recommended maximum. For a 75 pound child, 7 1/2 pounds is the most he or she may be able to safely carry on their back.
In addition to stressing young frames and growing structures, heavy backpacks cause acute injuries. In fact, a study in Pediatrics showed that emergency room visits associated with backpacks are most highly correlated with tripping, with the head and face being the most commonly seriously injured body parts. Why not protect your kids with a simple device that most of us already own-- specifically, the bathroom scale?
Please, do take advantage of the opportunity to live… well… with chiropractic care. Our role is to help you feel and FUNCTION at your best — whether you are in pain, feeling better, or feeling great. If you're ready to work toward living a pain-free life, schedule an appointment and ask us how we can help. Call us at 757-220-8552 to schedule an appointment today. Click here to request an appointment online.
Drs. Anne & Bob
Robert and Anne Pinto started their journey on July 17th, 1989 when they first opened their practice.