Tag Archive: health


Valley Healthcare

Springing Into Fitness for National Physical Fitness and Sports Month

May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, and with beautiful weather and blooms springing up everywhere, there’s no better time to make fitness and health a priority in your life.

The President’s Council on Physical Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition recommends at least 60 minutes each day of physical activity for children, or at least 30 minutes each day for adults 18 and up, and small steps can make the way to huge change. But what if you’re starting from a mostly sedentary lifestyle? Don’t despair, there are easy ways to get started.

  • Start by taking the stairs at your office building instead of the elevator.
  • Park at the far end of the grocery store or office parking lot.
  • During your favorite 1-hour show, use commercial breaks to do easy cardio or strength moves like jumping jacks, lunges, or sit-ups. You could even keep a jump rope handy as you get stronger and skip your way through commercial breaks!
  • Consider ways to make your daily life an active life – for example, cleaning your house burns plenty of calories if you move at a brisk pace, yard work is practically exercise, and shopping burns up to 200 calories an hour!
  • Approach local gyms about trial memberships so you can find a fitness facility that works for your life and where you feel totally comfortable.
  • Start taking small steps to improve your nutrition, too – since nutrition plays such an important role in how you feel while exercising. Swap your morning donut for a wrap with peanut butter and banana, or exchange your 3 pm blended coffee drink with whipped cream for an iced coffee with skim milk and sugar-free syrup.
  • Learn the basics of fitness first to ensure a lifetime of fitness know-how: Focus on cleaning up your walking/running form, military-style basics like sit-ups and push-ups, or have a personal trainer work with you once or twice to teach you proper form on compound movements like squats and deadlifts. Good form means less potential for injury, which means a healthier, happier you!

For more information on the President Council on Physical Fitness and the recommendations they suggest for both adults and children, visit www.fitness.gov. And to learn more about how the Valley Healthcare System and its associated practitioners can help you get on the way to a healthier, fitter life, call our main line at 706-322-9599. From registered dieticians on staff who can advise you on nutrition, to general care physicians who can evaluate you prior to starting a new exercise regimen, Valley Healthcare will walk with you along your journey!

Flu Facts to Face

With chilly weather setting in and leaves falling, there’s no denying what is right around the corner: Flu Season 2012. Though you can actually get flu any time of the year (and in any weather), traditionally flu virus spreads quickest and is at its peak potency during the cooler months of the late fall and winter time. With that in mind, here are some fast facts about flu – pay attention, they might save you a lot of discomfort down the road.

  • According to the dedicated Flu section on the CDC website, you can pass the flu virus before you ever know that you yourself are sick – a full day before symptoms even begin, extending through a week or so after symptoms start. With a contagiousness period of over a week, that helps explain how flu season can be so stubborn for those of us who just want to stay well.
  • Flu seasons are unpredictable in their severity and duration, as well as which strains of flu virus are spreading and how much flu vaccine is available to the public.
  • Groups most susceptible to severe flu and greater complications from the flu include elderly people, small children, pregnant women, and people with certain health conditions like asthma, diabetes, or heart disease. Also, persons living in nursing homes or other care facilities are at a greater risk for severe flu complications. Though not common, flu can be severe or even fatal.
  • This probably isn’t news to most of us, but the best way to avoid the flu is to get vaccinated. With several varieties of flu shots (detailed here) available to people who want to stay healthy and well, there’s no reason to avoid a flu shot unless your doctor instructs you differently.
  • Aside from vaccination, the silver bullet in terms of flu prevention, there are other small steps towards better hygiene that can keep you and your loved ones safe. These include regular hand-washing with antibacterial soap or use of an antibacterial gel, covering your mouth and nose with your arm whenever you cough or sneeze, and avoiding sharing drinks or food with others.
  • There are many non-health incentives to getting your flu shot nowadays. Many insurance plans automatically cover the cost of your flu shot, for starters.
  • You can make an appointment or be a walk-in at Valley Healthcare System to get a flu shot for only $22.
  • Many schools, hospital systems, and government buildings host regular clinics where you can obtain a low-cost, effective flu shot from professionals just like you’d find at your doctor’s office.

In other words, there’s no excuse to avoid a flu shot because you think you don’t need it or can’t afford it – you do, and you can! Visit www.valleyhealthcolumbus.com or call (706)322-9599 for more information.

It’s the last stretch before the holidays begin and you know that Halloween candy, Thanksgiving turkey and dressing, and that inevitable basket of holiday cookies or treats will soon be calling your name. How can you get back on the bandwagon and see serious results just in time for the end of the 2012? Here are five workout movements that will have you and your family getting fitter and healthier, well before the New Year crowd floods your local gym.

  1. High-Intensity At-Home Workouts – Don’t act like you haven’t seen the infomercials. These programs are serious, they’re intense, and there’s a variety of them to choose from. For purists, the original P90X is an option to consider. This Tony Horton creation has thousands of devotees and claims to bring about amazing transformation in participants in just 90 days. But newcomers on the market include Insanity, a so-called “elite” program that promises results in just 60 days, and Tapout XT, the MMA-inspired 90-day program.
  2. Weird Equipment – From foam rollers to kettlebells, there’s always a new piece of equipment that you’ve never heard of before. One really interesting option that is available for home use as well as in gym settings is the TRX Suspension Training System. Ranging from $200-350 (depending on the set), TRX may not be as cheap as a used treadmill, but it’s said to be quite a bit more effective – even New Orleans Saints Quarterback Drew Brees swears by it. TRX provides a balance challenge for sure, but since it doesn’t require additional weights, it’s a great base for a hardcore home gym.
  3. YouTube It – Free streaming video workouts available on YouTube and other websites are starting to take off. One such example is BodyRockTV, a free website with quick workouts and huge results. Most routines last around 20 minutes or so, but every minute counts for some serious intensity. Also checkout Zuzka Light, the YouTube home of fitness personality Zuzana Light. As the cofounder of BodyRock now gone solo, Zuzana’s weekly “ZWOWs” are anxiously awaited by thousands of “Warriorz” who swear by the intensity and efficacy of her extreme 15-20 minute workouts. A word of warning, though: If you’re sensitive about sites that show too much skin, these may not be for you. BodyRockTV and Zuzka Light are both pretty packed with eye candy.
  4. Crossfit – You’ve probably heard about Crossfit already, and maybe you even know someone who has gone headfirst into one of the craziest and most ardent group of fitness fans you’ll ever find. But with “boxes” (that’s a gym, in Crossfit language) opening up all over the country, now is as good a time as ever to really go for it and see what you’re made of. If you can complete a WOD (Workout of the Day) without falling down in a puddle of sweat, you might just be on your way to excellence!

Kids Fitness Classes – From Crossfit to Zumba, kids classes are popping up in schools, afterschool care centers, and gyms all over the country. Ask teachers, coaches, and friends if they know of any new options out there to help you get your entire family on the road to better health and happiness.

If you’re a diabetic, you might not be able to eat all the foods that you used to enjoy. Your health comes before great tasting food.The good news is there are some tasty recipes for diabetics. You just need to take the time to cook them for yourself. Most restaurants won’t prepare your food for your health/diet needs. They want to make sure their food leaves people full and with satisfied palates. The Mayo Clinic describes a diabetes diet in the following way:

“A diabetes diet — medically known as medical nutrition therapy (MNT) for diabetes — simply translates into eating a variety of nutritious foods in moderate amounts and sticking to regular mealtimes.

Rather than a restrictive diet, a diabetes diet or MNT is a healthy-eating plan that’s naturally rich in nutrients and low in fat and calories, with an emphasis on fruits, vegetables and whole grains. In fact, a diabetes diet is the best eating plan for most everyone.”

Be nice to your budget and your body by preparing the following diabetic-friendly recipes:

Breakfast

Applesauce Pancakes – http://www.health.com/health/recipe/0,,10000001732650,00.html

 
Whole Wheat Biscuits – http://www.food.com/recipe/whole-wheat-biscuits-25459

 

Lunch/Dinner

Veggie Tostadas – http://www.health.com/health/recipe/0,,10000001733680,00.html

 
Elise’s Sesame Noodles – http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/elises_sesame_noodles.html

 

Dessert

Fresh Berries with Maple Cream – http://www.health.com/health/recipe/0,,10000001732992,00.html

 
Splenda Blueberry Cobbler – http://www.food.com/recipe/easy-splenda-blueberry-cobbler-286911

 

Christopher Craft is the Founder/CVO of Nao Media and Consulting, a hybrid firm (media/branding/marketing/design) working in the fields of sports and entertainment. He blogs regularly at the Nao Blog. You can follow Chris on Twitter, connect with him on LinkedIn and circle him on Google+.

Valley Healthcare System, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) Non-profit, Charitable Organization.

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), in accordance with the Federally Supported Health Centers Assistance Act, as amended, sections 224(g)-(n) of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act, 42 U.S.C. 233(g)-(n), deems Valley Healthcare System, Inc. to be an employee of the PHS which provides liability protection under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA)

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