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Better Health From Greater Food Variety

, Fall2009

Walk Your Way

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

To A Slimmer You Unleash Your

True Potential Sleep Soundly For A Healthier Body

$6.49 US






FALL 2009

GET wellness and health advice effective fitness plans successful weight loss tips

photo: Cathy Yeulet

motivation and much more!

2 | wellnow | fall2009

Live Your Life Well Subscribe Now and Save! (800) 571-9065 or

37 Start your day off hearty with Pumpkin-Walnut Pancakes. Pg. 20







in every issue

Motivation WORKS Be a Fitness Role Model ............................................. 9 Unleash Your True Potential and Watch Your Life Skyrocket......................................................... 14

Editors Letter............................................ 4 Tidbits.......................................... 6,10,16 Moms We Love - Brooke Burke . .............. 9 Losing It ..................................... 8,11,13 Recipes: Hearty Fall Meals...................... 20 Yeah! Me Time - Turn Over a New Leaf.... 21 Ultimate Buyers Guide............................ 23

Fitness SOLUTIONS Walk Your Way to a Slimmer You............................. 15 What Are Interval, Circuit, & Plyometric Training?.... 17 Eating Well Better Health From Greater Food Variety. 18 Healthy Living Sleep Soundly for a Healthier Body ........ 12 Save Your Neck and Back: Solutions to Reduce Strain .......... 22

on the cover Sleep Soundly for a Healthier Body.......... 12 Unleash Your True Potential.................... 14 Walk Your Way to a Slimmer You............ 15 Better Health From Greater Food Variety.. 18

Walk Your Way to a Slimmer You Pg. 15

Cover photo by: Cathy Yeulet | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 3

A Note To The Readers Fall 2009 Volume I, Number 3 * $6.49

editor’s l e tte r

Editorial Director Evelyn Grizzoffia Marketing & Sales Director Victoria R. Henley Art Director Mary Hester Creative Coordinator Rachel Colani


t’s back to school and back to routines - but that doesn’t have to mean back to the same old way of doing things. As the weather cools down, step into a new way of doing your routine. Whether you need a jumpstart for your mornings or find ways to rejuvenate, Well Now Magazine has something to add to your autumn. This is going to be a fantastic season. It’s Time To Get Moving! To welcome the beautiful, breezy, refreshing days of autumn, get out and take a walk. Walking is one of the best ways for moms to get the dual benefit of both cardio and toning exercise. And it can be a great opportunity for family time as well. Round up the crew for a neighborhood stroll after dinner, or walk to the park on a Saturday. The kids have gone back to school! Hopefully you’ll have a little more time for yourself. Curl up with good book. Sip some tea. Grab a blanket, snuggle with the family pet on the porch and do absolutely nothing. When was the last time you took time out to just be with yourself? Make sure to create a few moments of quiet, once a day--or start with once a week if that’s more realistic. You won’t regret it, and the benefits will pay off for the whole family.

Editorial Assistant Olivia Merritt Entertain New Friends and Neighbors Your cooking doesn’t have to be a local legend for your parties to be. Just remember the secret to a good autumn party is the people. Getting together the right mix of people is just as important as serving the right food. You can make the food as interesting as your guests by creating a cultural or international theme and preparing dishes of autumn from around the world. Your parties will be the talk of the town in no time! Aren’t you exhilarated to see all the dramatic changes that happen at this time of the year? It is hard to believe that the year is three-quarters gone. As each cloud rolls by in the sky, think about what you have accomplished to make yourself happier, healthier, and fit. What is yet to be done? What new dreams lie hidden, waiting to be born? What else do you want to do with your life? Think about these things. Nature can be a wonderful teacher. As we watch the leaves gently fall to the ground, we can learn about letting go of our strong hold on the past to give ourselves the freedom for new joys and accomplishments. Our families will thank us! Happy autumn to moms everywhere!

Evelyn Grizzoffia

Evelyn Grizzoffia, Editorial Director

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Project Specialists Jessica Goodman & Darren Moore Contributing Writers Theresa Brooks, Patricia Dolleck, Selena Hall, Paul Johnson, Melanie Lagarde, Lorena Roades, Scott Wassman

Site Manager: Web Builder: Marketing:

Eric Darcis Open Source Universe, Inc. One Shop Communications

Attention Retailers To carry Well Now Magazine in your store, call Victoria Henley, Marketing & Sales Director, at (800) 571-9065, or write Well Now Magazine Retail Sales, P.O. Box 6547, Silver Spring, MD 20916 For subscription service or information: Go to and click on Subscriptions, or write to us at Well Now Magazine, P.O. Box 6547, Silver Spring, MD 20916. Copyright 2009, Red Bloom Media LLC. All rights reserved. Well Now Magazine is published quarterly by Red Bloom Media LLC. No part of this publication may be reprinted or otherwise reproduced without written permission from the publisher. Well Now Magazine is not responsible for advertising claims. Disclaimer: It is advised that readers begin an exercise program under the guidance of a qualified medical professional. The content in Well Now Magazine is intended for information use only; it is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read in Well Now Magazine. Produced and printed in the U.S.A.

on the web what’s online at Enjoy the many online extras of Well Now Magazine. It’s our bonus to you for being a loyal subscriber. Use our special features to register your comments on an article, subscribe to the Well Now e-newsletter, weigh in on our polls, save a favorite recipe, and much more. Moms: Build Exercise Into Your Busy Schedule Many moms find it hard to find the time to exercise. This may be because they can’t fit physical activity into their daily routine due to the demands of parenting or work. However, there are lots of ways you can build exercise into your weekly schedule. Find out how at A Healthier Approach To Weight Loss More Americans are overweight than ever before, and the numbers are steadily increasing. This means that popular methods of dieting have led to many unhealthy misconceptions about weight loss. Find a healthier approach to long lasting weight loss at wellnowmagazine. com/healthier-approach-to-dieting. The Busy Moms Guide To Cooking Quick And Nutritious Meals Families today spend about one-third of their weekly household food budget on expensive convenience foods, such as takeout and supermarket ready-to-eat meals. Most are high in salt or fat. Read about how you can serve a delicious and nutritious meal while saving your valuable dollars at

Become a Fan, Join us on Facebook. key words: well now magazine

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an orange a day?






compiled by Well Now Magazine’s editorial staff

An orange a day may keep fine lines and flaky skin at bay, found a recent study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Researchers discovered that women 40 and older who had greater amounts of C were 11% less likely to develop wrinkles. According to lead researcher Maeve Cosgrove, PhD, a nutritional epidemiologist, vitamin C boosts collagen production, which keeps skin firm. To ward off wrinkles, consume the RDA of 75 mg - the amount found in a grapefruit.

A Perfect Fall: Why should your fitness drop

when the leaves do?

Summer may have slipped away, but before you pack up your fitness plans along with the flip-flops, just think, you have a whole new season to make a fresh start at fitness. Here’s how to make the best of this Fall season: Work out. Any physical activity • Come in. When the weather's too • Change it. Learn something new. •is good activity for your body. That bad for an outdoor workout, just bring Do something different. Pull out the includes chores, especially outdoor tasks. Raking leaves, walking the dog or clearing icy paths from that first frost can help you stay active this season. But it doesn't have to be all work and no play. Walk through a tree-lined path to enjoy the beautiful fall colors. Ice skate at the outdoor rink. Hook up the volleyball net in the backyard. Shoot some hoops in the driveway. Rake up those leaves into a huge pile and jump in. Who cares if the neighbors are watching? Invite them to join you; they probably could use the exercise.

6 | wellnow | fall2009

it in. Take your power walks inside shopping malls and museums. Skate your way in shape at the indoor roller rink. Sweat to a workout video in the comfort of your living room. Join a health club with an indoor track, pool, tennis court or rock-climbing wall so that you can enjoy warm-weather sports long into the winter.

Yellow Pages or surf the net to find activities in your area that pique your interest. Sign up for dance lessons, venture into that martial arts dojo, learn that backhand stroke once and for all. You'll look great, feel great, and most importantly, have a great time.




Be a


iving a healthy lifestyle is important to you, and while you might not know it, you’ve become a role model. Be proud! Your desire to eat healthy and work out on a regular basis is inspiring, and your drive is influencing your family, your friends, and even your co-workers. But if you want to continue to motivate and help others, you must stay positive, educate yourself, and follow your own good advice.

Educate Yourself If you want to educate others about fitness, you’ve got to start by educating yourself. You need to keep up on all the health and fitness trends out there, and know which ones work and which ones don’t. You’ve got to understand the different kinds of workout programs and routines, and how they go about helping people become fit. This is going to require a little research and reading up! For example, lifting weights in order to bulk up is very different from lifting in order to be toned or sculpted, and this is the sort of difference that you should know about.

Keep up Your Drive You’ve got to maintain your drive and energy if you want to be a role model. If

you’re not motivated to wake up and jog in the morning, how can you expect your friends or family to be? Role models are the ones that inspire through example, and help others stay on track.

Stay Positive Along with motivation, it’s important to maintain a positive attitude. Once negative feelings come into play, you and your coexercisers will lose momentum and find that working out and eating well begin to lose their importance. Focus on the successes of the friends or family members you’re helping. Keep them positive, and take the necessary steps to show them that they’re making strides.

Follow Your Own Good Advice If you tell your friend he or she needs to run three times a week, then you should also be running three times a week. If you suggest cutting out cake and cookies, then you should lay off the sweet stuff as well. If you don’t practice what you preach, others aren’t going to take you seriously, and they’re not going to follow your suggestions. This is especially true for moms. If you’re concerned that your child isn’t active enough, or is eating unhealthy foods, don’t just tell them what behaviors

photo: Cathy Yeulet

Fitness Role Model to change—change them yourself! Continue giving your child someone to look up to.

Be Supportive If your friends or family want to go to the gym for a swim or an aerobics class, go with them. It can be hard going to a gym alone for the first time, and as a role model, you can be there to offer comfort and support. You might even want to help your fellow gym-goer plan workout routines for each day or week— they’ll need some direction and advice. If you go to the gym on a weekly basis, encourage your friend or family member to join you. Help him or her incorporate working out into a regular weekly schedule.

Provide Feedback and Other Resources As a role model, you should be giving positive reinforcement, as well as feedback. People will want to know what they’re doing well and what they can improve on. Being a role model means helping others find the answers to their questions and concerns. You didn’t know you being a role model could be so easy, did you? Just remember the most important part: stay positive and motivated, and have fun! | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 7

i n e v e ry issu e



Need Motivation? Readers Share Their Secrets of Success

A change in mindset helped Kassandre reach weight loss success

nt pr ese t we ig h


Name: Kassandre Harper-Cotton Age: 34 Height: 5’6” Present Weight: 132 Starting Weight: 185

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I was my heaviest after the birth of my daughter - weighing about 185 pounds. I worked out on and off for the first 3 years of her life. I would become frustrated with my body and work out for weeks. Then, my activity would level off and wane when I did not see the results that I wanted. I would even use a starting calendar weig ht and subtract two pounds per week and project my weight loss over the course of the month.

How I did it?

One day, I found myself trying to play with my daughter from the edge of the couch. That was a defining moment for me. My energy was low and I found myself becoming more and more self-conscious. Something had to change. My gym membership was waiting for me to start using it once again. I began to re-read many articles I had filed away over the years with new eyes and a new motivation.

and exercise Then, I had to be realistic about the effort that I was putting into my workouts. I was not working out with enough intensity or frequently enough. I began by committing to 3-4 days per week, no exceptions. I strength trained each body part at least once per week and began to see progress. Around September, I hired a personal trainer. Within months, my body began to change. I began to enjoy


I always had an excuse about why I could not be consistent with my workouts: I am tired, I worked a long day, I had a bad day, I am not a morning person, I do not want to be away from home too long, I will not be able to find parking when I return, I do not feel like it, etc. My life consists of a family, my job, and graduate school. These things are important to me and I make time for them. If I want to change my body, I am going to have to make it a priority. So, in March 2007 I made a choice. I was going to change my body by any means necessary. I was going to meet each challenge with a solution. And I was going to address bad habits. I began to ask questions and do research about nutrition

working out and I certainly enjoyed my changing body. I treasured the ‘me time’ and being pushed passed my limits. Today, I work out 6 days per week. I work each body part 2-3 times per day. I do cardio at the end of each workout. I eat clean everyday and I like how my body feels when I do. I enjoy being a fit wife and mother.

The best advice that I can give is: We all have challenges and obligations. But if you truly want to change your body you have to change you mindset. If working out in the morning is the only way to get a decent workout in, then you will have to wake up, early. It will get easier. Make fitness a priority

Make fitness a priority and you will reap the benefits. Change will not happen overnight, but it will happen. and you will reap the benefits. Be consistent. Change will not happen overnight, but it will happen.

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moms we



amous for her all-American-girl looks and bikini photos, this entrepreneur mom is all about family. Why does Well Now Magazine love Brooke Burke?

photo: Andrejs Pidjass

photo: gettyimages

Brooke Burke

Because raising healthy, well rounded children in an encouraging environment is her main focus. This 37-year-old mother to son Shaya (1), and daughters Rain (2), Sierra (7), and Neriah (9) strives to set a good example for her children. Even with celebrity status, she is just like the mom next door. How many celebrity moms do you find

attending mommy/toddler classes and cooking one-pot meals like garlic chicken with carrots? Brooke Burke is a real mom with substance. She confronts the normal

challenges of staying healthy and fit while raising children. Similar to most women, Brooke says she gained 30 pounds with her last baby. However, she raised eyebrows after appearing stunningly svelte just four weeks after the birth of her fourth child. Genetics? Diet and exercise? Humm…only she knows! Brooke’s secret to staying happy, healthy and fit? Stretching and core-strengthening Pilates workouts along with postbaby tummy wraps! Burke stays fit by eating five small meals a day, avoiding white flour, exercising, and, of course, staying active with her family. Burke gained global recognition as the travel guide on the E! series, Wild On . She later went on to host two seasons of the CBS reality show Rock Star and recently competed on and ultimately won the 7th season of ABC’s hit series Dancing With The Stars. She’s been doing Pilates for years and credits her post pregnancy recovery to Tauts Belly Wraps- an adjust able velcro waist hugger that she wore for 40 days after giving birth. She believes the wraps helped so

much that in 2007, Burke formed Baboosh Baby, a company that designs wraps for pregnant w o m e n . Th e c o m p a n y website features a blog from Burke about raising ch i l d r e n . S h e r e c e n t l y merged Bab ooshBaby. com with ModernMom. com, for which she is now CEO. This mom has also recently partnered with SKECHERS (the footwear company) to bring awareness to Cedars-Sinai Women’s Cancer Research Institute at the Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute, a program that is working to reduce the threat of cancer to women through research, education, early detection and prevention. Everything about Brooke Burke speaks to the modern mom who knows the juggling acts of being a parent, a partner, a professional, a great person. Looking utterly stunning after having children takes will power and limitless self-control. Brook Burke has taken it to a whole new level. Obsessed with the sometimes unrealistic demands of the entertainment industry? We think not. Happy, healthy and fit? YES! | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 9








? Vs ?

Diet vs. Exercise

In the battle of diet vs. Exercise, diet is the ultimate champion. It’s sad but true: even the best workout program can be undermined by just a few slips of the fork. Nutrition is unquestionably the number one problem for people who aren’t reaching their goals. Think of nutrition as the foundation of a good fitness program.

Prevs. PostWorkout Stretch.

Which Is Best? Neither. A person should stretch after an active 5-10 minute warm-up of the exercise you’re about to begin. Stretching before a workout may impair performance, suggests a study from the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. Stretching may temporarily shut down nerve signals, which slows reaction time and reduces strength, says study author Joel Cramer, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the University of Oklahoma’s department of health and exercise science. Other studies have shown that stretching pre-workout doesn’t reduce injury risk. Even the logic of stretching after exercise is questionable. A review published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concluded that people stretching post-workout were no more or less likely to suffer injuries.



compiled by Well Now Magazine’s editorial staff

Free Weights vs. Machines?

Free weights, unless you’re relatively new to strength training (under 12 weeks) or recovering from an injury. For best results do about 80 percent of your exercises with weights and the remaining 20 percent on machines. You will get stronger with free weights because they are more demanding on your muscles to stabilize and balance your body. Free-weights exercises can also improve performance in the real world (think lifting groceries while holding your child).

Fresh vs. Frozen | The Winner Is….. Dried fruit and nuts pack a punch of minerals and protein ♥

It all depends on how fresh they were to start with and how you cook them. ‘Fresh’ no longer means ‘just picked’. If your fresh vegetables have sat at the markets and then in your fridge before you prepare them, their vitamin levels will have already declined. If you overcook vegetables or hold them warm for more than 5 minutes, that further destroys some (not all) of the nutrients. It’s mostly the heat-sensitive vitamins - C and B group - that are affected. The content of minerals and fiber remains the same. So frozen can be as good as fresh so long as you cook them quickly in as little water as possible. On the other hand, uncooked fresh vegetables – like a salad - give us a higher intake of vitamins plus many antioxidants.

10 | wellnow | fall2009

i n e v e ry issu e



Need Motivation? Readers Share Their Secrets of Success

Belief & committment were Allison’s tools for her new dream body For some it’s alcohol and cigarettes. For me, it was fast food and tv. I remember making more trips to the fast food restaurants than to the gym and I was literally on a first name basis with the girl that worked the lunch shift at the burger place on the corner.

nt pr e s e t h we ig


I remember slowly going up a pants size.. then another.. and another. I snacked on leftovers, breezed thru drive thrus and did not set aside any time to exercise. I put myself last on the list starting of “things to we ig ht do” and never quite made it to the bottom of the list.

186 Name: Allison Earnst Age: 32 Height: 5’ 7” Present Weight: 133 Starting Weight: 186

That was until one day, “it clicked”. I was sick of being tired and overweight and unhealthy. I had just given birth to my third child six months prior and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I not only needed and wanted to be healthy for my three young children but also for myself. I wanted to be an example for them of a strong and healthy mom and most of all, I realized that I was worth spending the time it took to plan meals and eat healthy and get in my daily workouts. I was ready. At this point I was approaching 200lbs. I didn’t like what I saw in the mirror and I was feeling uncomfortable in my own skin. Starting slowly. I cut down

first marathon. I was so proud. The marathon represented to me, my weight loss journey. It was tough and there were times I wasn’t sure if I was going to finish and wanted to give up. But, most of all, it was a concrete example of how I wanted something, I believed in myself, prepared myself and I did it!

fast food from several times a week to once a week. Then I made slow changes to my diet and educated myself on the importance of clean eating. I subscribed to several fitness magazines and got lots of new workout and recipe ideas. It I am still working hard and have opened up a whole new world so many upcoming goals and for me. It did take more time dreams and I know that I will to plan and prepare healthy accomplish them. This journey things but I knew that the payoff has taught me that you really can would be priceless. So, I started do whatever you put your mind working out consistently and to. You just believe in yourself eating clean and the pounds and visualize what you want and started coming off. It’s like you will make it happen. The building a house. You can’t build possibilities truly are endless. I your dream home without the just had my first fitness photo knowledge shoot and a n d t h e It’s something that that was so tools to do no one else can do exciting. If you so. I was not had told me a going to be for you and there year ago that able to build is no magic pill. I would be on my dream Miami beach body alone. in a bikini with I used all of the resources a photographer, I would have around me to teach me how to thought you were out of your workout and how to eat right. mind. But I did it. And I will do it There were so many ideas of again and again hopefully. And I ways to mix up recipes and got some great shots. I still look workouts that before long, I had at the pictures and think, “Wow! a huge knowledge base and That’s me!” was prepared and confident. You just have to want it. It’s The more fit I got, the more something that no one else fit I wanted to be. It was such can do for you and there is no an amazing thing to see what magic pill. You have to eat clean could happen when I believed and you have to move your in myself and fully committed to body. You have to explore and something. After dropping the learn discipline from beginning first 20 pounds or so, I got a to end. Thru this experience, I trainer that would help me keep learned to push myself beyond on track and focused. Over the what was expected and what course of five months or so, I was was comfortable and to really down over 40 lbs. I decided to challenge myself. I am important take the ultimate challenge and and I am worth putting myself I started training for a marathon. first and living my life so that I I trained with a group for about can be the absolute best that I four months and completed my can be. | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 11





for a Healthier Body


leep issues seem to occur more often in women than men. The hormone fluctuations caused by menstrual cycles can affect our sleep. Your sensitivity to nighttime sounds also may be heightened after having children. We all know the dangers of driving or working when we are exhausted. Take steps to get a good night’s sleep, every night you can. According to a 2005 survey by the Better Sleep Council (BSC), 68 percent of American women admit to sleeping less than the recommended average of eight hours per night. The survey concluded one factor taking sleep away from women was work and family stress. The National Sleep Foundation conducted a 2008 poll that found the average time Americans spent in bed actually sleeping was six hours and 40 minutes on weekdays. This is less than the seven hours recommended by many health organizations. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute advocates seven to eight hours of quality sleep to maintain good health and function effectively. The institute’s sleep guide explains that hormones released during sleep affect how the body utilizes energy. Some studies have found the less people sleep, the more likely they are to prefer high-calorie foods. Plus, if you’re sleeping inadequately, you may not feel motivated to exercise. A 2008 survey, sponsored by the BSC, found: 12 | wellnow | fall2009

“Respondents getting nine hours of sleep or more are more likely to engage in higherintensity workouts…” Though nine hours may be more than you need personally, a good’s nights sleep is a definite advantage in your day. If you’ve been tossing, ask yourself: 1. Are you watching T.V. or working before sleep? 2. Is your mattress old? 3. Do you drink a glass of wine to get drowsy, but then wake up later? 4. Does dinner include high fat foods? 5. Are you taking new medications? 6. Do you sleep late on weekends? Answering yes to any of the questions above could offer a clue to poor sleep. Ironically, you could be spending more time watching television and web surfing than sleeping! Reduce your evening laptop and television time and do these activities outside the bedroom. Many women give their children relaxation time before bed. Then, they neglect to give themselves the same. Establish a time for bathing, reading or music and once in bed, keep the room comfortable, silent and dark. Check your mattress. A quality mattress may only last eight years. Shop around and lie down on a number of mattresses to see what

works for you. Also buy a pillow that’s made for the way you rest. The BSC suggests going to bed and getting up the same time every day, even on weekends. This is an unpopular concept, but if you have sleepless nights, it’s worth a try. Additional steps for proper sleep include: 1. Eat dinner several hours before rest, avoiding spicy or fatty foods. 2. Relieve stress and get fresh air. 3. Take naps before late afternoon. 4. Exercise several hours before sleep or in the mornings. 5. Avoid alcohol as a sleep aid. Reduce caffeine and nicotine intake. 6. Check medicine’s side effects. 7. Still tossing after a half-hour? Get up and do something to relax you. If your sleep issues cannot be resolved, contact a physician. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) provides information on medical care. The AASM explains that: “Sleep doctors are able to detect and treat both common and rare sleep disorders. Some common sleep disorders are insomnia, jet lag, sleepwalking, snoring and obstructive sleep apnea.” So make rest a priority and your body will thank you!



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nt pr ese t h ig we


Need Motivation? Readers Share Their Secrets of Success

Dropping 30 pounds skyrocketed Charlene’s self-image. I was never athletic or healthconscious. I was a yo-yo dieter. I hovered between carrying 15-20 extra pounds in high school, but I was a master at hiding it…or so I thought. I’d do the typical starve all day and gorge at night thing. Growing up the youngest of four children and the only girl, my athletic brothers encouraged me to get involved in sports. I was never interested in team sports. I felt like a misfit because I was “bigboned,” and not in great shape like the rest of my family. starting we ig ht When I was 24 I met a wonderful guy. We got married. At the time of our wedding I was about 20 pounds overweight, wearing a size 16 wedding dress. By this time I had been on three popular weight loss plans, spending a lot of money with the only result being that I gained more weight after I stopped them. My husband always commented on how great I looked, but internally I felt miserable. Like many women who struggle with weight, my biggest fear was what would happen after pregnancy and starting a family. After waiting five years and still unsuccessfully battling my extra weight, my husband and I decided to start a family. I was certain I would never fit into those size 14 jeans ever again. I

174 Name: Charlene Young Age: 35 Height: 5’7” Present Weight: 144 Starting Weight: 174

became pregnant in no time and started doing a lot of research on the best way to get healthy for this growing baby inside me. I started eating right and walking every day. I gained 30 pounds during the pregnancy and gave birth to a beautiful healthy baby boy. After doing research on living healthy for our baby, it dawned on me that I should have been doing these things all along for my own health. I started doing exercise at home during the day with a friend while the baby was sleeping. Unfortunately, the weight wasn’t coming off that easily. Although my friend suggested various diet pills and shots, I was determined to lose weight the healthy way. I knew pills were not the answer. I started reading everything I could on weight training at the local library and educated myself on proper nutrition. Now, five years and two sons later, I’ve maintained my goal. I never get on the scale anymore because I realize it’s only a number. I lift weights and do cardio on the elliptical machine at the gym. I also play with my kids every day. When my husband and I celebrated our 10th anniversary, we enjoyed my healthy new lifestyle by hiking and scuba diving- things we only dreamed of doing on our honeymoon in Hawaii. The best part was that I never felt guilty about any morsel of food I ate during that vacation and I was proud walking on the beach in a fabulous swim suit. I always think to myself, “I wish I had known the benefits of healthy living in my teens and early twenties!” It would have

saved me from all the guilty feelings about myself. Yet I’m very grateful to have finally realized that it’s not just a food thing- our feet were made for walking, running, and anything else active. If people would be more physically active, even just by taking the stairs instead of the elevator, food wouldn’t be such an issue. Some people at the gym admire my strength and ask, “How did you get in such great shape?” They are the same people I see fighting to get the closest parking space to the gym door! I have learned many things since I decided to become healthy. Most importantly, I have learned to surround myself with positive people who share similar healthy goals. Having genuinely supportive friends and family to share my accomplishment with has made me mentally richer and healthier. Attitude has so much to do with it. Health and fitness are a lot more than what you see in the mirror. My husband has been wonderful every step of the way. He has made me realize that we are all responsible for ourselves and I can do anything I put my mind to. I feel stronger and more flexible with every workout. Nothing beats the feeling of well-being. Looking forward to getting dressed- without having to change ten times to see what camouflages me best- is a thing of the past. In the future I hope to be fortunate to have good health for a lifetime. | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 13




Unleash Your

True Potential


ow many times have you felt that you just weren’t measuring up? You weren’t living up to what you were meant to be or do? We all have extraordinary potential that often becomes lost or buried beneath our self-imposed limitations or limiting beliefs. In order to shift gears and bypass all that blocks our way, we must take a close, honest look within ourselves and identify exactly what those blocks are. Almost every kind of emotional block is based on fear; most often it is a fear of some sort of failure. This fear might be that of failing yourself, failing others or disappointing a loved one. You may keep yourself in situations, both personal and professional, that require less than your best. You may be doing this because you it allows you to feel safe. You don’t believe you can succeed and you don’t want to risk failing. You stay in your comfort zone where nothing more is expected of you than you are currently producing. When you allow your fears to block your way, you build your own trap. Certain circumstances in life are beyond our control, but we often create our own limiting situations. How far we succeed in our lives directly correlates with our confidence and beliefs. If we believe we can never do something, chances are we never will. Nobody wants to exist in these fetters. That is why so many of us are seeking to press 14 | wellnow | fall2009

beyond our fears and find freedom. You can remain stuck in your comfort zone or you can choose to break free and find balance and success in your life. Low levels of self-esteem and selfconfidence are alarmingly common among women of all ages. We cling to unstable people and things. We allow our self-worth to be determined by unrealistic expectations and artificial significance. When we are bogged down with these mental distresses, it becomes increasingly difficult to find motivation. These negative emotions build up over years and create patterns. Negative emotional patterns compound within themselves, leaving a network of reactions that become a part of you. In reality, the imposed reactions are disruptions to your emotional and psychological balance. They create what I call emotional static and this static blocks your energy from flowing freely throughout your body. You remain unbalanced, unable to create. Living your life on tilt is no real life at all. The trick is regaining emotional balance, emotional freedom, and a true sense of confidence. Perhaps you have specific fears or deeply buried hurts that plague you. You need to address them and release them before you can move forward with your life. Start by treading lightly, look into and then pull the first threads of that negative network within you. Identify those issues and emotions

starting with the most bothersome. Begin with the obvious blocks that prevent you from expressing your talents and reaching your true potential. Now is also an excellent time to explore your talents. Allow yourself the time and freedom to do those things you enjoy. These activities will give you positive reinforcement of your abilities and allow you to act upon positive emotions. They can help you break some of the binding that holds you back. Until you introduce affirmative interaction and events into your life and welcome that positive energy, it will be much more difficult for you to move forward. Work through negative networks in your personal life and it will spread over to your professional life as well. You are much more capable than you may believe, especially if low self-esteem and self-worth have stunted your career development. If a previous event or abusive boss made you feel bad about your performance, it has prevented you from working toward the career you’ve always wanted. Previous events in life are often the guillotine of personal goals. A failed class, a mismatched job environment or personal insults often cut short the potential of many people. Break past old chains and see how far you can fly! Take the course you need, gain the certification your goal requires, and, most importantly, believe that your personal success is possible.

photo:Serge Villa

and Watch Your Life Skyrocket





Walk your way to a



illustration:Melanie Taylor

By Bob

ou don’t need fancy technical clothing and a gym membership to lose weight. All you need is a pair of comfortable shoes and room to roam. Walking to lose weight is not only inexpensive, but also low-impact and easy to work into a busy mom’s schedule. Many moms think that chasing after kids and doing multiple loads of laundry a day more than compensates for the lack of a routine exercise plan. Unfortunately, this is usually not the case. If you need convincing, buy yourself a pedometer to see exactly how many steps you take in a day. If it’s less than 10,000, you’ll have a hard time losing weight from your daily activities alone. Why 10,000 steps per day? This is equivalent to about 5 miles, which burns approximately 500 calories. A calorie deficit of 500 calories per day amounts to about one pound of weight loss per week. To begin, examine your daily routine to find places where you could walk instead of drive. Could you walk your kids to school instead of drive? This would benefit both you and your children. If you need to pick up some milk or eggs from the store, could you walk there instead?

While you’re waiting around for you child’s piano lesson to end, could you walk laps of the building? There’s no reason that you need to stand still or sit during your child’s soccer game or soccer practice. Walk around the field instead; you may even find a better vantage point to watch the game. If you work outside the home, walk your deliveries to other departments yourself instead of using a courier. Walk to the local deli for lunch instead of having food delivered. Better yet, pack yourself a healthy lunch from home and use the rest of your lunch break to go for a walk. For the truly motivated, there’s even a walking workstation, which is an elevated desk mounted over a treadmill (http://treaddesk. com/). You could walk all day and still get your work done. If you work outside the home, give serious consideration to walking to work instead of driving or taking the train or bus. By the time you figure in traffic snarls, subway waits, or bus switches, walking often adds less time to your commute than you think. If you have a treadmill in your home, park it in the family room and walk while watching your favorite television programs. Remember, this doesn’t have to be high-intensity exercise, merely a way to get your daily step count up to 10,000. Unfortunately, everyone is not created equal. If you’re logging 10,000 steps per day and still not losing, or even gaining, weight, increase by 2,000 steps per day until you’re losing at least a pound per week. And make sure you’re watching what you eat while walking off the pounds; just one double cheeseburger could sabotage a day’s worth of exercise. Finally, bring your kids along when you go for a walk. They truly cherish the one-on-one time with you, and this is a great opportunity to strengthen your relationship with your kids. | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 15










compiled by Well Now Magazine’s editorial staff

4 Keys For Determining A Healthy Recipe


It excludes unhealthy ingredients Look down the list of ingredients. If they contain a lot of sugar, lots of fat, white flour, white rice, it probably isn’t that great for your health.

It is based on healthy fats and not too much of them. A little oil is fine but you don’t want recipes that call for lots of butter, cream, sour cream, or mascarpone. Save these ones for a special occasion.



It doesn’t have large amounts of salted ingredients. Stock (liquid or cubes or powder), soy sauce, fish sauce or similar salty sauces, bacon, anchovies and cheese all mean a high intake of sodium (salt), which is harmful to your blood pressure. You can choose to leave out the salt from your recipe but you can’t take out the salt from these ingredients.

It employs a healthy cooking method. Steaming, grilling, roasting on a tray in the oven or pan frying in a non-stick pan with a thin smear of oil are all good for you. Deep frying or shallow frying in a pan is not.


photo:Brett Mulcahy

Walk It Off

Eat Breakfast & Feel Energized When your metabolism is in peak condition, you feel energized and burn calories efficiently. Get your engine going by eating a good breakfast. Research says eating breakfast is the best way to start your metabolism, but most of us still skip it — or we grab a muffin on the go. The best breakfast, says Mary Horn, director of exercise science and nutrition at the Miraval Resort in Tucson, Ariz., is a mix of protein (eggs or tofu), carbs (whole grain toast or oatmeal), and healthy fats (olive oil or nuts).

well now, did you know... A pound of flab is equivalent of four sticks of pure butter. Choosing olive oil over butter won’t save you calories or fat grams, but it will help you lower your saturated-fat intake.

16 | wellnow | fall2009

Planks and crunches are good for strengthening abdominal muscles. But unless you burn off the fat, your six-pack may be obscured. The simplest way to get rid of fat is by doing vigorous cardio workouts, like running and walking, says Cris Slentz, PhD, of Duke University. In a nine-month study, he found that subjects who stayed sedentary gained the most belly fat, had an 8.6 percent increase in visceral fat (the fat inside that surrounds vital organs), and put on two pounds. Those who did moderate exercise neither gained nor lost abdominal fat and dropped two pounds. And a group of participants who averaged 17 miles per week on the treadmill showed an average 7 percent decrease in abdominal fat and six-pound weight loss. “If you want to lower abdominal fat, you need to do vigorous cardio for 30 minutes or longer six days a week.” No time? Squeeze in a 15- to 20-minute walk before and after work, plus a long walk on Saturday or Sunday.

End the Cold War Eat more produce. Avocados, watermelons, asparagus, winter squash, and grapefruit are rich in glutathione. Research show that many fruits and vegetables contain a compound called glutathione, which stimulates the immune system to begin releasing large numbers of macrophagesspecialized cells that seize viruses and mark them for destruction. Other good sources include okra, tomatoes, potatoes, cauliflower, broccoli, cantaloupes, strawberries, and peaches. And of course, maintain your vitamin C level, which strengthen white blood cells that are essential for fighting infections. Vitamin C also lowers levels of histamine, a defensive chemical released by the immune system that causes stuffiness and other symptoms.

want more? hop on

Microwaving Away The Goodness? No. In fact, microwaving retains a great many more nutrients than does boiling as it uses little or no water so you don’t leach out the valuable nutrients into the surrounding water. And it cooks food fast by “energizing” the particles of water within a food. Microwaving rates on a par with steaming. This means that the heat-sensitive vitamins - B vitamins and vitamin C – are not depleted as much. Most other nutrients are not affected adversely by any cooking method. In fact, cooking improves the digestibility of most proteins and increases the availability of lycopene and other fat-soluble vitamins by softening tough outer cell walls. Mineral and fiber content do not change.




What are

photo:Andres Rodriguez

Interval, Circuit, &Plyometric Training?


you’re looking to shake off those winter blues, which exercise can help you ring in the New Year with a healthy resolution? There are many different styles of exercise available, but which one will best fit your lifestyle and budget? While there are a myriad of exercise options, interval, circuit, and plyometric training strategies are growing in popularity. Each exercise presents its own benefits and advantages, and one just may be right for your lifestyle and goals.

Benefits of Interval Training Interval training, as the name suggests, is the alternation of low and high intensity exercise. For example, if you were running on

a treadmill, you might jog steadily for two minutes, then increase the pace and sprint for thirty seconds. Following this high intensity phase, you might jog steadily again for another two minutes, and then run like a crazy woman for another thirty seconds. It sounds tiring, but it feels great and has proven to be very effective in strengthening muscles, including the heart. The American College of Sports Medicine is a strong advocate for interval training because it burns more calories than endurance training and is associated with less risk of injury. Interval training accompanies anaerobic exercise (without oxygen) with aerobic exercise (with oxygen). During the anaerobic exercise highintensity phase, your body enters an oxygen debt, and during the aerobic low-intensity phase, this debt is repaid. Your body converts carbohydrates to energy during repayment and begins to build new capillaries – meaning more effective blood delivery to the muscles over time.

Advantages of Circuit Training Circuit training refers to a variety of different exercises performed concurrently to improve strength, flexibility, endurance and coordination. Circuit training is not one particular type of exercise, but more a style of exercising that can be both fun and challenging. Generally, between 8-12 circuit training stations are set up at a class. Each one offers a different activity, which is conducted for 60-90 seconds. At the end of the time

period, there will be a 30 second rest period, and then you will change stations until all are exercises complete. Circuit training is fantastic for increasing strength and overall fitness. It is a great method of exercise for those that are not already in tip-top shape, but also offers a challenge for serious athletes. The aerobic and anaerobic exercise improves blood delivery to the muscles, the strength exercises build muscle, and the flexibility component aids in injury reduction and joint movement.

Pros of Plyometric Training Plyometric training is a fancy name for exercises which are designed to improve explosive power. Skipping, for example, is a low intensity plyometric exercise, but there are a number of more specific exercises for the upper and lower body. Athletes who are training for a particular sport tend to use plyometric training to enable them to convert their explosive power more quickly, but anyone can benefit from this exercise. Plyometric training allows the muscles to become stronger and more elastic, which allows your muscles to load and contract in a specific sequence. The quicker your muscles can achieve this loading and contracting process, the higher you will be able to jump or the harder you will be able to punch. Plyometric training is a great stress reliever and an exhilarating way to train. It works the nerves, tendons, and muscles to full capacity. Regardless of which form of exercise you choose, revving up your heart rate is an excellent way to keep your body fit, your immune system healthy, and your stress levels at bay. | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 17




What is Food Variety? Food variety means eating a wide variety of foods from within and across each of the five food groups, in the amounts recommended. Eating many different foods helps maintain a healthy and interesting diet that provides adequate nutrition. Eating a variety of foods can help prevent diseases such as diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disease.

The 5 Major Food Groups It is important that you eat a balanced diet with foods from each of the five major food groups. Choosing a variety of foods within and across food groups is also important. Each food group contains at least one nutrient for which it makes a particularly rich contribution to the total diet. For example, the milk group is known as a rich source of protein, calcium and riboflavin. In each food group, different foods provide more of some nutrients than others. If you eat a variety of foods from each group, you will probably get all the nutrients 18 | wellnow | fall2009

provided by the foods in that group. For example, some vegetables contain vitamin C (capsicums), while others (asparagus and spinach) are high in folate. Most of the variety in your foods should come from plant foods (fruits, vegetables and grains). Choosing a variety of foods within each group will also help to make your meals interesting, so you don’t get bored with your diet. The major food groups, as explained in the U.S. Food Pyramid are: ♥ Fruit ♥ Ve g e t a b l e s , legumes ♥ Lean meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, legumes ♥ Bread, cereals, rice, pasta, noodles ♥ Milk, yogurt, cheese

Better He a


hat we eat plays an important role in our health. Eating a variety of different foods daily, together with an active lifestyle, are the key factors for good health. Eating a wide variety of healthy foods is the best way to minimize the risk of diet-related diseases. Through our adult years, our nutritional requirements change. Studies show that people who eat a wide variety of food are healthier, live longer and have reduced risk of developing lifestyle illness. Food choices influence our risk of developing these lifestyle illnesses such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Foods, in particular vegetables and fruit, contain a large number of naturally occurring substances known as phytochemicals. Currently, scientists have identified over 12,000 of these phytochemicals, many of which are thought to interfere with the processes that cause cancer and heart disease.

Why food variety is good for your health Eating a wide variety of foods increases the likelihood that you will be exposed to sufficient quantities of all essential nutrients, which vary in amount and combination among different foods. This will help to improve your health and may help prevent diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular (heart and circulation) disease. Good food variety means good nutrition. If you eat a variety of good food, your diet will provide you with adequate nutrition. However, you should remember that the way in which foods are grown, stored and prepared can affect nutri-

tl h

m o Fr

Grea ter

ent value. Providing energy (calories) is not the only reason for food variety. It also helps ensure that important dietary components which provide no nutrition, such as fiber, are included in your diet.

Variety od Fo

Ways to include the 5 food groups in your diet

I t ’s n o t h a r d t o include foods from the major food groups into snacks and meals. Here are some suggestions: ♥ Fruit – this is easy to carry as a snack or it can be included as a part of most meals. For example, try a banana with your breakfast cereal, an apple for morning tea and an orange for an afternoon snack. Fresh whole fruit is recommended over fruit juices and drinks because fruit juices and drinks generally contain less fiber and are more concentrated sources of sugar and energy. ♥ Vegetables and legumes – raw or cooked vegetables can be used as a snack food or as a part of lunch and dinner. Salad vegetables can be used as a sandwich filling. Vegetable soup can make a healthy lunch. Stir-fries, vegetable patties and vegetable curries make nutritious evening meals. Try raw vegetables like carrot and celery sticks for a snack. ♥ Lean meat, fish, poultry, eggs, nuts,

legumes and tofu – these can all provide protein. It’s easy to include a mixture of protein into snacks and meals. ♥ Bread, cereals, rice, pasta and noodles – grains and cereals come from a wide variety of sources including breakfast cereals (oats, muesli and whole grain flakes), whole grain breads and biscuits, rice, barley, corn and varieties of pasta. ♥ Milk, yogurt and cheese – eat a diverse range of dairy foods including milk, cottage cheese, yogurt and other types of cheese.

6 Tips for Greater Food Variety  Choose a variety of foods from the U.S. Food Pyramid.  Eat a range of different breakfast cereals and breads.  Jazz up dishes with herbs and spices— they can transform a meal for little cost and no added fat or salt.  Experiment with the different vegetables, fruits, cereals and meats available.  Ask for tips on how to prepare and eat exotic produce.  Give yourself time to get used to a new food. Experts say that it can take humans up to nine times to adjust to a new food or flavor. | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 19

i n e v e ry issu e

fall recipes

Fall fruits and veggies offer savory, solid nutrition. It is the season for hearty, warming meals. Make the most of seasonal hard squashes, sweet potatoes, cranberries, chili peppers and even brussel sprouts. Now is the time of year for what chefs call “textural cooking.” Here are a few recipies to get you started:

Pumpkin-Walnut Pancakes

Fall Fruit Crumble

Turkey Chili

Yield: Makes about 14

Yield: Makes 6 servings

Yield: Makes 6 to 8 servings

1-1/4 cups milk

1 large white onion, coarsely chopped

4 large eggs, separated, room temperature

The accent of fresh cranberries adds a new note to ordinary apple crisp. A delicious treat beneath a crisp oat topping. Serve it warm from the oven with ice cream for everyone to love!

1/8 cup sugar

2 cups fresh or thawed frozen cranberries

1 tablespoon coriander powder

3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 firm-ripe pears such as Bartlett, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1 tablespoon chili powder

3/4 cup canned pure pumpkin

1/8 cup (1/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted 1-1/3 cups flour

2 apples such as Granny Smith, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1-3/4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1 cup sugar, divided

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats

Vegetable oil or butter

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup walnuts

1/4 teaspoon salt

Pure maple syrup

1 stick unsalted butter, softened

1. Whisk buttermilk, pumpkin, egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla in medium bowl to blend; whisk in melted butter. Whisk flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in large bowl to blend. Add dry ingredients to buttermilk mixture and whisk to combine. 2. Using electric mixer, beat egg whites in medium bowl until soft peaks form. Fold whites into batter. 3. Lightly oil or butter heavy large skillet set over medium heat. Working in batches, pour batter by 1/3 cupfuls onto skillet; cook until bubbles form on top, about 1 1/2 minutes. Turn flapjacks over and cook until second sides brown, about 1 minute. Transfer pancakes to plates. Sprinkle with nuts. Serve with syrup.

Start your day off right with Pumpkin-Walnut Pancakes 20 | wellnow | fall2009

1.Preheat oven to 425°F with rack in middle. 2. Stir together fruits, 1/2 cup sugar, cornstarch, and vanilla and place in a buttered shallow 2-quart baking dish. 3. Stir together oats, flour, salt, and remaining 1/2 cup sugar. Blend in butter with your fingertips until mixture forms small clumps. Scatter over fruit and bake until juices are bubbling and topping is golden brown, about 30 minutes. Cool slightly before serving.

2 bell peppers (any color), cut into 1-inch pieces 3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 tablespoon cumin powder 1 teaspoon packed brown sugar 1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes in juice 1 (19-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained 1/2 cup water 2 cups cooked turkey, cut into 1-inch pieces Accompaniments: sour cream; sliced avocado; chopped white onion; lime wedges 1. Cook onion and peppers in oil in a heavy medium pot over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, 12 to 15 minutes. Add spices and brown sugar and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes with juice, breaking them up with back of a spoon, then add beans, water, and 1 teaspoon salt and simmer, covered, 15 minutes. 2. Stir in turkey and let stand, covered, until heated through, 5 minutes.

i n e v e ry issu e


me time

photo:AYuri Arcurs

Turn over a new leaf - create a few moments for you!

utumn means bright skies, refreshingly cool days, and high-spirited festivals. The sun is deliciously warm and beckons us outside one last time to enjoy this beautiful season. You’ve spent the summer frolicking at the park, hosting play dates, wading in the swimming pool and making sandcastles at the beach. As moms, we tend to get so wrapped up in caring for everyone else that we forget to care for ourselves. Breaks to rejuvenate are essential in maintaining a mom’s well-being. As the kids go back to school, you can go back to you- even if only for a brief moment! Autumn is packed with enough harvest parties, corn mazes, and fresh-pressed cider to give summer an inferiority complex. Put on your hoodie and get outside – autumn has lots to offer. Here are simple ways to welcome the season and rejuvenate you:


1. GATHER FRIENDS. Invite your friends together to enjoy a lovely autumn afternoon of good fun and good food cooked outside on an open fire. Send fun and artistic invitations made with sponge-painted leaves. During your gathering, make an agreement with your friends to not complain or gossip. Enjoy the new conversations that arise under these conditions. 2. SHARE YOUR FAVORITE BOOK. Buy several copies of your favorite book. Give one copy to your mother, one to your mother-in-law, and a few to good friends. Start an annual book discussion for the autumn season. 3. BRING IN THE COLOR. Bring the warmth of the autumn season into your home. Add the vibrant shades of brown, orange, red, and yellow to your tables with a fall bouquet of fresh flowers or other seasonal arrangements. 4. TAKE A HIKE. Instead of taking a drive around to see the majestic fall colors, put your boots on and take to the hills for a hike. You can make it as leisurely or challenging as you like – local trails and tracks are designed for all levels of ability. Those happy trails may soon be snow-covered, so get moving while you still can. 5. RIDE A HORSE. Horse-riding is a popular activity. It offers the experience of being outdoors with the addition of learning about animal care and control. In autumn the ground is softer, often reducing the danger element of a fall. Visit a reputable horse-riding center where the supervision and instruction is of a high standard. 6. GO FLY A KITE. The United States has many beautiful beaches and these are never as beautiful as when there is a fresh but healthy breeze speeding across the sand. Flying a kite in these conditions is an exciting challenge. A quiet open beach is best for kite flying. Making time to care for ourselves is so important. Without proper attention we begin to show signs of fatigue. This autumn, as the evenings grow dark and the temperatures drop, make an effort to keep up the routine of taking a moment to rejuvenate. Break the pattern, get out of the rut, and start thinking in a new way! | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 21




Save Your Neck and Back

Solutions to Reduce Strain

Enjoy Low Impact Aerobic Exercise According to Dr. Jeffrey Katz of Harvard Medical School, gentle aerobic activities such as swimming, biking, and walking are great for sending back and neck pain packing. As Dr. Katz expounds, “The program should include low-impact aerobic exercises that improve endurance and cardiovascular fitness as well as releasing endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers.” Contrary to popular belief, sitting still does not necessarily help with your back pains. In fact, most people who experience twinges report a worsening of symptoms when they are continually sitting down. Many chairs, particularly those in the office, are poorly designed; combine this facet with the fact that your back does not like to be in a static position for long periods of time, and you increase your likelihood of backaches. Walking and swimming are a fantastic way to stimulate blood flow, build muscles, move your skeletal muscles and improve your general fitness. Lift Objects Correctly When children are screaming or the groceries need to be transported into the house quickly, our natural inclination is to yank rather than to lift with care. When lifting heavy 22 | wellnow | fall2009

objects, you should bend your knees and keep your spine vertical. This way, the weight is properly distributed and will not place undue strain on your back and neck. Sleep With a Pillow Sleeping on your stomach arches your back and places your spine under duress. To unload your spine, you can either sleep on your back with a small pillow gently tucked under your knees, or lie on your side with the pillow positioned under your knees. If sleeping on your stomach is a necessary evil, place your pillow underneath your stomach to offset some of the back arching. Strengthen Your Neck Muscles There is no better alternative to combating neck pain than strengthening the neck muscles. The Spine Center of Colorado strongly advocates that neck pain sufferers turn to strength building exercises before considering surgery. There are a number of exercises you can try, including the neck side rotation, the neck and glide extension, and the neck stretch. It is important to note that proper form must be used when you perform these exercises to prevent injury. Drink Lots of Water Tr y t o i n t a k e a plenitude of water in the course of the average day. Plenty of water increases the height of the intervertebral disks, which act as shock absorbers in your back. Water is also great for detoxifying your body, and staying hydrated can even stave off snack cravings, keeping you healthy in more ways than one.

Quit Smoking If you smoke and you are experiencing back pain, the two are likely to be related. The intervertebral disks are reliant on surrounding structures to deliver blood since they lack their own supply. Smoking reduces blood oxygen levels, meaning that disks can easily become fragile, damaged or dehydrated. Of course, there are many other health benefits to quitting smoking also. Back and neck pain are not inevitable. There are many strategies you can employ to counteract the negative effects of everyday life on your spine. Be sure to take action before twinges turn to agony, and consult a health professional if you are struggling to manage your pain.

photo:David Gilder


you are now struggling to bend down and pick up toys from the floor, or you feel neck and back twinges when you do so, you may be suffering from common back or neck ailments. Back and neck problems can be both debilitating and painful. The good news is that they are completely preventable! Here are six effective tips to prevent those little twinges from becoming painful problems.

Buyers Guide

Ultimate Buyers Guide Don’t let the threat of rain or cold derail your autumn plans. These picks by Well Now Magazine are the perfect complement to your plans of enjoying the splendor of this jewel-toned season.

Mustela Double-Duty Hydra-Stick A must for protecting exposed areas on babies a n d m o m s w h i ch c a n become chapped and irritated in cooler weather. The perfect compact size to stash in the smallest purses, fashion industry professionals call HydraStick a make-up staple. It’s protective, calming and perfect for applying under lipstick. Shea butter brings a soothing action on dry skin subjected to harmful climatic factors such as cold. Hypoallergenic; specially formulated to minimize the risk of allergic reaction. Size: .35 oz; $9.50. Find a retailer near you by visiting

OOH La Spa - At Home Spa Treatment Kit by Decleor A complete at-home aromatherapy facial kit that cleanses, exfoliates, masks, treats, and protects the skin, eyes, and lips with essential oils. Effectively cleanses the skin to remove impurities, gently exfoliates to eliminate dead skin, deeply cleanses and brightens, balances and purifies, and protects and moisturizes the face, eyes, and lips. $30.00. Available at $30.00

Nike+ Women’s Air Max Tailwind 2009 Running Shoe Enjoy the cushioning and comfort of the Nike+® Air Max Tailwind 2009 women’s running shoe. It’s crafted using breathable mesh, with dual Max Air units in the heel and forefoot for maximum shock absorption. The BRS 1000 outsole provides dependable traction on a variety of surfaces. Sizes: 6-11; $100.00. Buy online at

t Coa ns It Up ece mea h r e v e t fl Co m e r wa le th Doub l e t h e this soft, b d o u t bulk in gth coat. u n h t i w o tted ¾-le b o n d e d fi f semi- a y e r s o o m b i n e l c o e t zip Tw ec o f l e a y f r o n d to r c i w m oo a 2 rt ng h w i t h ar-warmi can spo d u e o a y d t s e n s, an a coa cloth make our yoga ess seam he t y c over as. Prin tails at ont e fr se d r o e d v w e o ider ve, and t $79.00. o r b em nd slee XL; . a e: Shem kets. Siz c a o t zip p at athle it Find

Psi Bands A stylish alternative for those who suffer from nausea. FDA-cleared Psi Bands (pronounced “Sigh Bands”) are drug-free wristbands for the relief of morning s i ck n e s s ( p r e g n a n c y ) , motion sickness/travel, chemotherapy, and other forms of nausea. These comfortable acupressure wristbands are waterproof, adjustable, reusable, and latex free. $14.99 per set of two. For a list of retailers or to buy online, visit | SeptemberOctoberNovember2009 | 23

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Better Health From Greater Food Variety

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