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The Allergy Season Survival Guide – Say goodbye to seasonal sniffles


How remarkable veteran and Valley man, Armando Ciaccio, overcame his life-threatening battle with peripheral neuropathy



Prep your mind, body and home for the cheeriest time of year


You never knew vegetables could taste this good


A how-to guide for growing the perfect herb garden

CANCER PREVENTION Life-saving advice from our favorite skin cancer expert

SNACK SMARTER! 8 marvelous munchies that will curb any appetite


Walk Better. Sleep Better. live Better. If you’ve been struggling with numbness, burning and extreme sensitivity in your legs and feet, you may have Peripheral Neuropathy. Struggle no more, we have your solution.

You May Have Peripheral Neuropathy, and It’s Time You Did Something About It. Not only will you be able to get a good night’s rest again, but you’ll get your mobility and confidence back. Did you know that nearly 60% of people with neuropathy experience some form of sleep deprivation, which can increase the risk of heart attack, heart failure, stroke, or high blood pressure? Our program uses a special device called the SENSUS (the only FDA approved TENS unit for use during sleep), which, when incorporated into your plan, can help you get a good night’s sleep again. Thanks to our comprehensive, integrated approach to care, you’ll have—perhaps for the first time—a team of practitioners working together to create a Recovery Game Plan™, especially for you. Relieve your discomfort and enjoy some of the things you thought you’d never be able to enjoy again. You can begin your path to comfort faster than you think. Let the professionals at Arrowhead Health Centers get you well rested, and then back on your feet, confidently doing the things you love. It’s time to live better.

Before you let one more day go by, call for your free priority appointment now.

888-995-4899 Glendale • Scottsdale • Mesa • Surprise/Sun City


Editor’s Letter ....................................................................... 3 Renew yourself with advice from Healthstyle’s Editor-in-Chief.

Mindful Lighten Up .............................................................................. 4 Give your mind, body and home a seasonal tune-up with these helpful tips from wellness expert, Dr. Bob Iversen.

Healthy Appetite Food Therapy with Bethany Lindsey .............................. 6 Learn how amazing cauliflower can be with these tasty, low-cal recipes from nutritionist, Bethany Lindsey.

Remarkable Valley man, Armando Ciaccio, and his wife Ida celebrate 60-years of marriage and overcoming Armando’s life-threatening battle with peripheral neuropathy. PAGE 16

Snack Smarter! .................................................................... 10 Curb your appetite, increase your metabolism and avoid unhealthy cravings with eight of our favorite super snacks.

Just for Fun Puzzle Page .......................................................................... 14 Exercise your brain with fun, health-minded games.

Doctor’s Orders Battling Peripheral Neuropathy: A Story of Hope .................................................................. 16 Inspiring veteran and Mesa man, Armando Ciaccio, shares his story about surviving peripheral neuropathy. The Allergy Season Survival Guide ............................... 26 Relieve itchy eyes, congestion, sneezing and other seasonal symptoms with this easy, how-to guide. Ask the Expert .................................................................... 28 Avoid cancer and practice safe skin with life-saving tips from HM health expert, Dr. Robert West.

Vitality Mommy Knows Best .......................................................... 32 Our favorite mommyhood expert shares her herbal health, beauty and gardening secrets.

Deborah Brandon Photography

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Serving the needs of the West Valley and Scottsdale!

The Arizona Neurological Institute (ANI) was founded in 1995 by Dr. Maninder S. Kahlon. The Institute is the largest comprehensive neurological practice serving Sun City West to Scottsdale— the West Valley. The Institute provides accessible outpatient and inpatient neurological, physical and rehabilitative medicine. NEUROLOGY Maninder S Kahlon, MD Atul Syal, MD Jatin Shah, MD Jason Reinhart, DO Andrew Gorman, DO Andre Hagevik, MD PhD Nirmala Aryal, MD Niranjan Chandragiri, MD Eric Eross, DO Vardges Vandian, DO Swaraj Singh, MD Toby Yaltho, MD Praful Reddy, MD Ahmad Nizam, MD Todd Herman, MD Darry Johnson, MD Harinder Kumar, MD Harpreet Johl, MD Jacek Sobczak, MD Carlos Pence, PA-C

PAIN MANAGEMENT Kirk Puttlitz, MD Lawrence Kutz, DO Evan Freedman, DO Nicholas A Scott, MD Sudhir Ranjan, MD Terrie Pasch, MMS, PA-C RHEUMATOLOGY Alan Mallace, MD REHAB MEDICINE Amir Buljina, MD NEURO PSYCHOLOGY Brian Klinck, PsyD Amy Knapp, PsyD PSYCHIATRY Paul Boulware, MD Mandie Anderson, PA

Announcing a new office in Sun City! Dedicated to pain management, rheumatology, and neurology Neurology | Pain Management Rehabilitation | Rheumatology Neuro-Psychology | Psychiatry Child Neurology

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623-972-3800 2

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Mike Bechtol David Berg Guy Berry Keith Biggs Deborah Brandon Aaron Castiglione Armando Ciaccio Ida Ciaccio Lisa Conrad Amy D’Acquisto Rob Davidson Rayna Dean Vicki Dean Joe Feltham Danielle Giordano Ted Grasse

Kathy Heasley Doug Houvener Bob Iversen Janice Johnston Raychel Kelly Kayla Knisley Theresa Lambe Ken Levin Bethany Lindsey Pradnya Raje Dianne Salazar Gail Shoultes Annette Valenzuela Michael Wells Robert West Kim Wiskirchen


Model: Armando Ciaccio, US veteran and peripheral neuropathy survivor Photography by: Deborah Brandon Photography


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Editor’s Letter

Renew Yourself Ahhh, breathe it in. The atmosphere is full of fragrant spring flowers, aromatic orange blossoms, and glistening fresh air. But the sweet-smelling scents of the season aren’t the only reasons to celebrate springtime. Spring is an undeniably powerful season. It holds the authority to dictate the lifestyle patterns of plants, animals, and even us. And there are few things more powerful than new life, growth and a fresh start. So it’s only natural that we should use the mystical forces of the season to renew our minds, bodies and souls. So how do we pull that off? Self-reflection is a pretty good place to start. In my case, I can confidently say I’m a much healthier (and happier) person than I was 12 months ago, but I can also recognize that there some areas where I could use a little evolution. For example, I love vegetables; bell peppers, zucchini, carrots, cucumbers – they’re all great. But in my world, when competing

against pizza, mashed potatoes and my other favorite carb-o-licious foods, veggies are rarely the victor. But there’s hope for me – and for you, too, no matter your health goals. That’s why I’m so excited about this issue of Healthstyle. It’s packed full of hopeful, positive stories (like Armando’s inspiring tale on page 16), new ways to grow memories with your family (cool idea on page 32) and helpful tips for kicking your health goals into high gear (learn how to snack smarter on page 10). Whatever your goals are this season, let spring motivate you to start fresh and stay inspired. Cheers to a healthier, happier you!

Sarah Perry is an Arizona native and NAU alumna who has always had a passion for storytelling and helping others. Her zest for life and experience as a marketing pro and communications expert at Arrowhead Health Centers has helped her explore new ways to find happiness through healthier living. Her favorite things about spring are hiking, baseball games, fresh fruit and stargazer lilies. Deborah Brandon Photography

Sarah Perry Editor-in-Chief

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™



LIGHTEN UP! By health expert, Dr. Robert Iversen The clocks have gone forward – at least for most of the country – the evenings are brighter and springtime is already blooming. There is no better way to shake off winter gloom than getting your body, mind and home ready for the beautiful spring season. Even if you don’t contribute to the 9.7 percent of the population who the U.S. National Library of Medicine says suffers from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) or seasonal depression, chances are, you could probably use a couple of positive changes to enhance your attitude and amp yourself up for the rest of the year. Try taking on one or all of these summertime solutions to de-stress, relax and “lighten up” this season.

Go Play Outside Remember when this was your mom’s go-to slogan? Even though she may have just been trying to get you out of her hair, she was definitely on to something. The best way to absorb the positivity of the season is 4

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

to simply embrace nature. According to the authors of the Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health, exercising, working, walking or even just lazing around outside has been referred to as “outdoor therapy” and can be extremely effective in treating patients who suffer from SAD. That’s reason enough to get outside and breathe in all spring has to offer. Take the kids on a post-dinner walk, go to the zoo, stroll through the Desert Botanical Gardens, play a game of tag in your back yard or lounge by the pool. The leisurely activity and hearty dose of Vitamin D from the sun will have you feeling lighter in no time.

Create the Great Indoors Ever heard the mantra: if you surround yourself with positive things that you, too, will become more positive? It may sound cliché, but there’s some truth to that old adage and the best place to start is at home. Update your curtains to let the sunshine in. Use sheer fabrics, make sure your windows are sparkling


clean and remove any disorderly clutter that may block the natural light. Add a couple of small mirrors, glass vases, reflective candle holders or metal furniture frames to disperse the springtime glow throughout your main living areas. Add a few brightly colored throw pillows or picture frames. If you don’t have the extra cash to spend on a few seasonal garnishes, try rearranging your furniture. Space the pieces in a way that will allow the room to breathe better and remove bulky items such as heavy rugs and throws. Finish off your refurbished space with fresh flowers from the grocery store or even a few blossoms from your own back yard. Your welcoming new space is sure to invigorate and inspire.

Schedule a Doctor’s Appointment Springtime is the perfect excuse to start fresh. Let the season of perpetual growth guide you to health and wellness. Catch up on all of those nagging health items you know you shouldn’t ignore but keep putting off. Schedule your annual physical exam (that’s right, annual). Get a skin cancer screening, especially since you’re probably spending more time outside. Visit your chiropractor for a tune up or to alleviate the headache you’ve had since the kids have been out of school. Venture out and try an alternative treatment you’ve been curious about, such as acupuncture or herb therapy. Many of these ancient remedies have been used to lighten up the body and soul.

Chow Down One of the best ways to embrace a lighter new season is by shedding off the extra layers you accumulated

during the colder months. Sure, hearty comfort food tastes great, but when our outfits start changing to accommodate the warmer season, it’s only fair that our diets should, too. Start by swapping potatoes for whole grains. Starchy spuds are beneficial when the weather is cooler and your body needs heavier meals that will burn energy slowly to maintain body heat, but during warmer months, you need quick, cool meals to keep you refreshed during outdoor activities. Grains like quinoa, amaranth, and buckwheat can be prepared ahead of time and made into incredible salads and stir-fry that will provide energy without making you feel weighed down and lethargic. Make cold soups instead of warm ones. Try making a spicy tomato gazpacho or a delicious spinach-based chowder. These cool soups will quench your thirst and give you the veggie boost your body needs. Swap calorie-laden ice cream for a healthier alternative. Banana soft serve is a wonderful substitution and one of the easiest recipes in the world.

Banana Soft Serve Recipe 1

Drop two or three frozen bananas into your blender and mix until you’ve reached the consistency of frozen yogurt.


Add a few walnuts for some fun texture and enjoy!

Dr. Robert Iversen is the Wellness Program Director at Arrowhead Health Centers in Scottsdale. He has over 24 years of experience in the medical field including work as an esteemed consultant, entrepreneur, owner of his own private chiropractic practice and as acting President for the Arizona Association of Chiropractic. He is passionate about helping people of all ages live long, healthy, happy lives and believes that holistic health care and a multispecialty approach to wellness are the best ways to reach those goals. Have questions for Dr. Iversen? Send your comments to Deborah Brandon Photography

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Healthy Appetite

Food Therapy with Bethany Lindsey

Believe it or not, your favorite junk foods can be health foods. Just add cauliflower. Seriously. Cauliflower is versatile, ultra low-cal, delicious and packed with vitamins. There are so many ways to prepare and enjoy this marvelous food and the health benefits are amazing (hint: think anti-cancer properties)! This super veggie seldom gets the attention it deserves, so we’re putting cauliflower in the spotlight where it belongs. Here are three mouthwatering recipes that will help you and your family fall in love with one of our favorite foods. Creamy Cauliflower Mashed “Potatoes” This smooth and creamy recipe makes a perfect low-carb stand-in for mashed potatoes.

Serves 4 Serving Size: ¾ cup 107 calories per serving: 4g fiber, 5g protein, 7g fat Ingredients: 8 cups bite-sized cauliflower florets (about 1 head) 4 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled ⅓ cup nonfat buttermilk 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided 1 teaspoon butter ½ teaspoon salt Freshly ground pepper to taste Snipped fresh chives for garnish Directions: 1 Place cauliflower florets and garlic in a steamer basket over boiling water. Cover and steam until very tender (about 12 to 15 minutes).

Cauliflower Cooking Tip #1 You’re probably familiar with white heads of cauliflower, but did you know there are also colorful, green and purple varieties of this super food?


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

Short on time? Use your microwave. Place florets and garlic in a microwave-safe bowl with ¼ cup water. Cover and microwave on high for 3 to 5 minutes. 2 Place cooked cauliflower and garlic in a food processor. Add buttermilk, 2 teaspoons oil, butter, salt and pepper. Pulse several times, then process until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a serving bowl. Drizzle with the remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil and garnish with chives or low-fat cheese, if desired. Serve hot.

Cauliflower Cooking Tip #2

Healthy Appetite

When you’re at the grocery store, look for cauliflower heads that are uniform in color with no spots or bruises.

At last, pizza without the guilt! Who knew cauliflower could make the perfect crust? Well, we did.

Cauliflower Pizza Pizzazz Serves 2 Serving Size: ½ pizza 391 calories per serving: 4g fiber, 36g protein, 18.5g fat *Nutrition information based on cheese pizza; will vary depending on toppings used

Ingredients: For the crust: 2 cups grated cauliflower (about ½ a head) ½ cup plain, nonfat Greek yogurt 1 egg 1 cup reduced fat shredded mozzarella cheese 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning Dash of sea salt For the topping: ¾ cup marinara sauce ½ cup reduced fat shredded mozzarella cheese Choice of toppings (optional) Directions: 1 Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 2 In a food processor, prepare cauliflower by pulsing florets until they take on a grainy, grated texture.

3 Place 2 cups of the grated cauliflower into a clean, thin dish towel. Wrap it up in the middle and twist closed, squeezing out all moisture. 4 Place dry cauliflower into a bowl and add Greek yogurt, egg, and spices. (Note: Italian seasoning includes dried marjoram, thyme, rosemary, sage, oregano, and basil. If it’s more convenient, replace the Italian seasoning with dried oregano, basil, or thyme alone.) 5 Fold mixture until ingredients are evenly combined. 6 Place cauliflower “dough” onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and spread the mixture with your hands until it is about ¾ -inch thick. This will be the crust. 7 Bake cauliflower crust for 30 minutes or until lightly browned and firm enough to hold its shape. 8 Remove crust from oven and top with marinara sauce, shredded mozzarella, and choice of toppings. 9 Place pizza back into oven until cheese is melted and begins to brown on top (about 5 minutes).

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Healthy Appetite

Cauliflower Cooking Tip #3 At a mere 29 calories per one-cup serving, cauliflower is a great low-cal alternative for many side-dishes, salads and stews.

Who says veggies have to be bland? These spicy buffalo bites have enough oomph to kick your taste buds into full gear.

Cauliflower Buffalo Bites Serves 6 Serving Size: About 1 cup 119 calories per serving: 3g fiber, 4g protein, 2g fat Ingredients: 1 cup water 1 cup all purpose flour 2 teaspoon garlic powder 22 oz (6 1/2 cups) cauliflower florets ¾ cup Franks Hot Sauce 1 tablespoon melted unsalted butter 2 large egg whites ½ cup all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder Directions: 1 Preheat oven to 450°. 2 Lightly coat large non-stick baking sheet with oil.

3 Combine water, flour and garlic powder in a bowl and stir until well combined. 4 Coat cauliflower pieces with flour mixture and place on baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes. 5 While cauliflower is baking, combine hot sauce and butter in a small bowl. 6 Pour hot sauce mixture over baked cauliflower. Continue baking additional 5 minutes. Serve hot. Bethany Lindsey is a Nutrition Coach and Lifestyle Educator at Arrowhead Health Centers in Glendale. She particularly enjoys helping people lower their cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure to prevent debilitating illnesses like diabetes, heart disease, stroke and other health-related conditions. She is dedicated to helping people eat healthier, lose weight and overcome obstacles to live better, healthier lives. To request more information, e-mail Bethany at Deborah Brandon Photography


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

CONSTIPATION PAIN MEDICATION THE COMPOSE STUDY IS NOW SEEKING PARTICIPANTS Constipation is a common side effect of prescription pain medication. For those managing chronic pain, finding relief from constipation can be especially challenging. Introducing a clinical research study evaluating an oral investigational drug to see if it may provide relief of constipation caused by prescription medication. If you are managing chronic pain and are struggling to find relief from constipation, the COMPOSE study may be an option for you.

You may be eligible to participate if you:

No cost to participate. No health insurance required.

• Have had non-cancer-related pain for three months or longer, and have been taking a prescription pain medication for at least one month • Have, on average, fewer than three bowel movements a week • Have tried, or are currently taking, a laxative

All eligible study participants will receive at no cost: • Comprehensive study-related consultation with the study doctor • Investigational drug or placebo (an inactive substance) • Study-related visits, care, and monitoring

To learn more, contact: Heather Koppel, Research Coordinator 623-298-1817 or

Healthy Appetite

Snack Smarter Studies show that snacking can actually help curb your appetite, increase your metabolism, balance your blood sugar levels and keep you from giving in to unhealthy cravings. That’s why it’s especially important to make the most out of snack time by eating nutritious foods. Here are eight of our favorite healthy and delicious between-meal munchies that will keep you sustained whether you’re in the car, on the couch or at the office.

Anytime Oatmeal 1 packet plain instant oatmeal (made with water) plus ½ cup blueberries FIBER




Hummus with a Crunch Half a cucumber, sliced, plus 3 tablespoons hummus C ALORIES





Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™









Healthy Appetite

Popped to Perfection 3 cups popped popcorn with 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan plus chili powder and a pinch of cayenne pepper C ALORIES








Sweet Clementine 2 clementines and 7 walnut halves C ALORIES








Nosh by Numbers It’s easy to get carried away when your tummy starts to rumble. Our advice: walk away from the greasy potato chips and keep these easy-to-follow rules in mind when selecting a snack.



is all it takes to keep your metabolism humming.

will provide fuel for your muscles and release gastrointestinal hormones that increase satiety.


Selecting snacks with

will keep most people satisfied for a couple of hours. Fiber absorbs water and expands in your stomach, keeping you fuller longer. It’s also digested slowly which sustains your body’s energy.

NO MORE THAN 12 GR AMS OF FAT will help ensure that you don’t get more than 20 to 35 percent of your daily calories from fat, as recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Healthy Appetite

Be Kind Kind brand peanut butter & strawberry bar C ALORIES








Easy Caprese 2 sliced tomatoes with 1 ounce mozzarella plus 5 basil leaves and 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar C ALORIES








Berry Cheesy 1 cup blackberries with ¼ cup part-skim ricotta plus ½ teaspoon honey and grated lemon zest C ALORIES




Figtastic 2 figs with 2 slices prosciutto (cut in half) C ALORIES





Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™









Struggling with asthma even with medication?

rch a e s A re y is stud now. l i ng enrol see o t s Call u u may if yo lify. qua

Local doctors are testing a new investigational drug for uncontrolled asthma.

If you’re 18 to 75 years old and get asthma attacks despite using inhaled medication, you may qualify for a local research study and receive at no cost: • Study medication for uncontrolled asthma • Study-related care from a local doctor • Compensation for travel

Ask your doctor for more information or contact our clinic to see if you may be eligible to participate.

For more information, or to enroll, contact: Natalie Searle 623-334-4000 x7174

Just for Fun

Puzzle Page Answer Key on page 30

Word Jumble Unscramble these jumbled words, one letter to each square, to form ordinary words that can be found in this issue of Healthstyle. Then, arrange the circled letters to learn the one thing we, at Healthstyle Magazine, aren’t looking forward to this season. BERH


LHAETH Sudoku  Puzzles    


4 7   9   NASKCS   2   3               KSIN 1   4   7     6   2       3   6       8         5   9       7   1   5    





Sudoku  Puzzles   Sudoku #1  

4 7   2         1     6     3     8     5   9   7    

9 1   6   5         3   8   4           1               4   7   8   5         2   3   9           6   5   8   1                       4   2             1   5   2   9   8              ©2012  

© 2012

  14   Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™



6 9   7  

5   8                 7     1     2     6   9  

1 6       8   3   5  


5   8   4   1     5     9     1         2     9   8  

  4     2            ©2012  


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© 2012


4 6   9   7       2   4           5   3   1   8       4   3   7         7   9           6   5   4         2   4   7         9   4           1   5              ©2012    

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888-996-0366 Glendale • Scottsdale • Mesa • Surprise/Sun City • Chandler • Prescott Valley

Doctor’s Orders


HOPE Battling Peripheral Neuropathy Photography by Deborah Brandon Photography


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

Doctor’s Orders

Two-time war veteran and remarkable Valley man, Armando Ciaccio, shares his story about surviving his life-threatening battle with peripheral neuropathy and overcoming the impossible to dance at his granddaughter’s wedding. Armando Ciaccio may tell you he’s just a regular man, but he’s so much more than just your Average Joe. He’s lived in a handful of states, traveled the world, raised a trio of successful boys and is still going strong with his beautiful wife, Ida, after more than 60 years of marriage. Even in his younger years, Armando survived the Great Depression, supported his widowed mother and siblings and protected our country’s freedom during the Cold and Korean Wars. In his 83-years, Armando has accomplished more than most people ever dare to achieve. But there was a time when Armando struggled with a torturous health condition that nearly took his life. A condition that affects more than 20 million Americans every day. A condition called peripheral neuropathy.

The American Dream As a young boy, Armando had more responsibility than most children growing up.

His parents followed their American Dream all the way from Italy to New York in search of greater opportunities for their children. Armando’s father bravely took a hazardous job to earn a living for their large family and was unexpectedly and tragically killed while working. At 29-years-old, Armando’s mother became a widow and was burdened with the responsibility of providing for four young children by herself. “She struggled,” says Armando, “but my mother made sure we were always taken care of. She was strong.” At a mere 16-years-old, Armando nobly left school to support his mother and three siblings.

At 17-years-old, Armando joined the Army to support his mother and siblings. He served in the Cold and Korean wars.

“It was a hard thing to do,” he says, “but I wanted to support my mother and my family.” Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Doctor’s Orders In 1948 when he turned 17, Armando demonstrated his father’s courage and enlisted in the United States Army to serve in the Cold and Korean Wars. When Armando was granted leave, he traveled back home to spend time with family. Little did he know, during that same trip he would meet his future wife, Ida, at a community dance. “It’s funny,” says Ida. “We actually lived in the same neighborhood in The Bronx since we were kids and had never met until that dance. We liked each other immediately and started seeing each other.” After a short time, Armando was called back to the Army to serve in the Korean War. “I didn’t want Ida to have to wait for me, so I broke things off,” says Armando. “I just wanted her to be happy and didn’t want her to put her life on hold because of me.” But despite their temporary divide, the young couple kept in touch while Armando was stationed overseas. And when he returned home from war once again, they knew they were meant to be together. After serving four years in the U.S. Armed Forces, Armando traded his military career for a life with Ida.

“I knew I wanted to marry her,” says Armando. “I wanted to come home to Ida.” The couple married, established careers and raised three wonderful boys. And just as his father had hoped all those years ago, Armando had finally come to realize his own American Dream.

“I knew I wanted to marry her,” says Armando. “I wanted to come home to Ida.” Beginning the Battle Over the years, Armando endured more than his fair share of health concerns due to complications from being born prematurely and unknowingly working in unhealthy working conditions. While serving in the Army, a medical exam revealed a small spot in his lung that was assumed to be tuberculosis, but was fortunately diagnosed later on as a harmless birthmark. And during his 37-years of working in a factory and as a mechanic for a New York utility company, Armando was exposed to asbestos and went blind in his right eye. But none of those health concerns were quite as startling as when Armando experienced a lifethreatening complication as a result of a condition called peripheral neuropathy. “About 20 years ago when we lived in Washington, I was installing a tile floor in our home and I injured my ankle pretty badly,” says Armando. “I didn’t think too much of it at the time, but then I started feeling symptoms I’d never had before. It felt like I was walking on sharp rocks. I would get these numb, tingly feelings like when your foot falls asleep, except the sensation wouldn’t go away and it crawled up my whole leg. Sometimes, it would even feel like ants were crawling up my legs. It was irritating and uncomfortable.”

Mesa residents, Ida and Armando have supported each other through thick and thin, including two overseas wars, raising three successful boys and battling peripheral neuropathy.


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

Other symptoms associated with peripheral neuropathy include unexpected, electric-like shocks that travel from your feet up through your legs, loss

Doctor’s Orders Neurological Disorders and Stroke and more than 20 million Americans have been diagnosed with the condition.

“These folks have been great! They’ve helped me through so much,” Armando says about his team at Arrowhead Health Centers.

of balance, the constant need to move your legs or feet, extreme sensitivity to touch or temperature and cuts that don’t heal. “These symptoms can lead to balance issues, falling, hospital stays and more serious problems if peripheral neuropathy isn’t caught and treated early,” says Arrowhead Health Centers peripheral neuropathy expert, Dr. Keith Biggs. More than 100 variations of peripheral neuropathy have been identified by the National Institute of

“Peripheral Neuropathy happens when the microscopic nerves and blood supply in your extremities become damaged,” says Dr. Biggs, “usually resulting from diabetes, chemotherapy, infections or injuries – like in Armando’s case. These nerves communicate important sensory messages from your brain and spinal cord to every other part of your body, so when they become damaged, they can cause irritating or painful symptoms. At the time, Armando had never heard of peripheral neuropathy and was unsure how to react to the symptoms he was experiencing.

“No one I knew had experienced the same symptoms before, so I thought maybe it would just go away on its own. But it didn’t.”

The Root Cause While there are a number of ways you can acquire peripheral neuropathy, some of the most common causes are diabetes, physical trauma, chemotherapy and autoimmune disease. Diabetes Extended exposure to high blood glucose can damage the microscopic blood supply surrounding fragile nerve fibers, causing diabetic neuropathy. The American Diabetes Association notes that about half of all people with diabetes have some form of PN. Physical Trauma Injuries caused by auto accidents, falls, and sportsrelated activities can be the leading cause of PN. If your peripheral nerves become completely or partially severed, strained, compressed or stretched, the acute damage can cause PN.

Chemotherapy For people who have undergone chemotherapy treatment for cancer, peripheral neuropathy can be a crippling side effect. The American Cancer Society notes several chemotherapy drugs are known to damage peripheral nerves, causing chemotherapyinduced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN). Autoimmune Disease Autoimmune conditions like shingles, Epstein-Barr virus, HIV, Lyme disease, diphtheria and viral or bacterial infections can attack nerve tissues and cause peripheral neuropathy.

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Doctor’s Orders “I didn’t really know what to do because I wasn’t even sure I had a health condition at all,” says Armando. “No one I knew had experienced the same symptoms before, so I thought maybe it would just go away on its own. But it didn’t.” In 2000, Armando scheduled a doctor’s appointment to evaluate a herniated disc in his back and used the opportunity to ask about the symptoms that began when he injured his ankle. “My doctor recognized my symptoms right away and said I had neuropathy. I felt relieved for a minute that he knew what was wrong with me, but then he told me nothing could be done about it and that I just had to live with it. I felt helpless and frustrated.”

A Brush with Death Armando’s symptoms continued to worsen, but he was unwilling to give up the things he loved. When the opportunity arose to visit Italy with his family, Armando didn’t want to miss out. “The numbness made it really hard to walk,” says Armando, “but I pushed through it because I didn’t want to miss out on memories with my family. The worst part was when we got to Italy. I was in so much

pain that I had to sit on a bench while my family went sightseeing without me. It was terrible.” Armando struggled with his peripheral neuropathy symptoms for years without relief. And when he and Ida moved to Arizona, Armando decided he would once again seek help for his symptoms. “I heard about a doctor who was doing treatments for neuropathy so I decided to check him out,” says Armando. “He told me he was helping other people with antidepressants, and even though I didn’t want to be on long-term medication, I decided to give it a try. I just couldn’t live with [neuropathy symptoms] anymore.” “[The anti-depressants] made me feel funny,” says Armando. “My symptoms never really got better and I just didn’t feel quite like myself. But my doctor said I had to wait to feel the results, so I did.” Armando stayed on the medication regimen prescribed by his doctor for a few months, until one day, a major catastrophe would change his life forever. “I was supposed to take six pills every night,” says Armando, “but one day, I woke up and couldn’t

Suspicious Symptoms If you experience any combination of these symptoms in your legs or feet, it could be a sign that you have peripheral neuropathy. Irritating prickling, numbness, and tingling Almost like tiny pins and needles are poking your feet or like your legs went to sleep. Unexpected electric-like shocks Sharp jolts or shocks that travel through the bottom of your feet, all the way up to your legs. Constant need to move legs or feet Feelings of tingling and discomfort – especially while you’re sleeping – causing you to shift or readjust frequently.


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

Extreme sensitivity to touch or temperature Many peripheral neuropathy patients report that their bed sheets feel intolerable or that their feet are ice cold – even when temperatures are over 100 °F outside. Cuts that don’t heal Small sores or lesions on your feet that don’t heal or grow worse over time. Loss of balance Falling or instability due to loss of feeling in your feet.

Doctor’s Orders remember if I’d taken my medication the night before, so I took six that morning.” Without realizing it, Armando had accidentally overdosed on his medication.

“I’ve never seen my boys cry like they did that day,” Ida recalls. “It was just so scary. He could have died.”

“My whole body felt limp,” Armando says. “I didn’t really know what was going on or what to do, so I just sat there. I tried to tell Ida, but I couldn’t even talk straight.”

“It was the scariest thing I’ve seen,” says Ida. “He was so disoriented and had a hard time telling me what was going on. I didn’t know how to help him so I called 9-1-1.”

Within minutes, an ambulance arrived and rushed Armando to the emergency room. He was in critical condition. “When we got to the hospital,” says Ida, “his pulse was so high and they were afraid he was going to go

Prevent the Slide When left untreated, peripheral neuropathy can be very detrimental to your health. Know the risks and seek help from an expert right away to reverse the effects and prevent sliding into more serious problems down the road.

Prevent the Slide Treated


4. Advanced Neuropathy

3. Early Neuropathy

2. Diabetes

1. Pre-Diabetes

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Doctor’s Orders Relief at Last Armando kept searching for options and eventually found a local chiropractor offering help for people with neuropathy. Instead of prescription drugs, the chiropractor’s program offered treatment via infrared light. “I went three times a week for a total of 15 treatments,” says Armando. “The treatments weren’t painful or anything, but when I was done, I didn’t notice any difference. The doctor also gave me an unused toilet brush and told me to rub that on my legs at home to help with blood circulation. It felt like I was just throwing money out of the window.” After trying for years to help ease his peripheral neuropathy symptoms and getting nowhere, Armando was almost ready to give up and accept that he would have to live with pain and discomfort for the rest of his life. But then one day, Ida saw something that gave her hope.

into cardiac arrest. The doctor had to put him into a coma to calm him down.”

“I was reading the paper and saw an ad about a new kind of neuropathy treatment that wasn’t like anything Armando had tried before,” says Ida. “They explained everything on the ad and said Medicare covered it, too. It was the first time I’d felt hopeful since Armando came out of the hospital.”

Armando was admitted to the hospital and placed in the intensive care unit where he remained comatose for three days.

The treatment was offered at Arrowhead Health Centers, a nearby office boasting state-of-the-art treatment for peripheral neuropathy.

“I’ve never seen my boys cry like they did that day,” Ida recalls. “It was just so scary. He could have died.”

“After everything I’d been through, I was skeptical,” says Armando, “but Ida felt good about it and I figured I should give it a chance.”

One of the proudest moments in the Ciaccio family was seeing Armando dance with his granddaughter at her wedding.

Armando spent 10 days in the hospital recovering from his near-mortal overdose. As a result of the exquisite care he received from the hospital personnel, Armando’s life was saved. Grateful to be alive, Armando returned home, but was back to square one with his peripheral neuropathy symptoms. And even though he had nearly lost his life, he still wasn’t ready to give up on feeling better. 22

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

“They had a really thorough program,” says Ida. “At the end of October, we had a free appointment with Dr. Iversen who told us about the program. Within a week, we saw Dr. Raje who gave him an exam and said she thought he would be perfect for the program. A few days later, they took a biopsy of the nerves in his legs and a few days after that, they did a nerve test.

Doctor’s Orders It was like they covered all of the bases and it felt good to have a whole team working together to take care of him.” After Armando’s biopsy and nerve conduction test results confirmed that he did in fact have peripheral neuropathy, he was eligible for Arrowhead Health Centers’ program and began treatment right away. “There are a series of different steps we use in the program,” says Dr. Biggs. “It’s important to start with an official biopsy. As recent as a few years ago, peripheral neuropathy was diagnosed by a process of elimination. If the doctor could determine the patient didn’t have a list of diagnosable health conditions with similar symptoms, they would assume the patient had neuropathy. With our program, we’re actually able to take a small sample of the nerves in a patient’s lower leg and perform a test to see whether or not the patient has neuropathy. If they do, we enter them into our program and start treatment right away. Treatment consists of nerve therapy,

“Every time I came out of treatment, I felt great,” says Armando. It was so different than anything I’d tried before.” functional strength training, short-term medication and a take-home electronic device that helps with discomfort. Every patient is different, so we put together a Recovery Game Plan that works for them. It really takes a whole team.” Much to Armando’s surprise, he enjoyed the treatment. “Every time I came out of treatment, I felt great,” says Armando. “It was so different than anything I’d tried before. We did lots of things for my neuropathy and I always felt a result with everything

“The treatments were so easy, a few weeks into the program I would just come into the office and start doing some of them myself,” Armando says with a chuckle. Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Doctor’s Orders are great, the treatment is great and I feel 80 percent better. I’m like a different person.” “He really is,” says Ida. “He used to not be able to move his toes because they were stiff as boards but now he can wiggle them. You can just tell he feels better now.” In fact, Armando felt so much better after treatment that he was able to accomplish one of his lifelong dreams.

Grateful to have Armando happy and healthy, the couple, now in their 60th year of marriage, never wastes an opportunity to laugh and enjoy life.

they did. The team had me do water therapy with little machines, exercises on the bicycle and balance training with a computer. My favorite was the stimulator machine. I would stand on a balancing platform and there were different games that made it fun and helped me get stronger.” And Armando did get stronger. By the middle of January – only two and a half months after he began treatment – the symptoms that had plagued him for more than 20 years had nearly vanished. “Arrowhead [Health Centers] was the only place that gave me relief,” says Armando. “The people

“Arrowhead [Health Centers] was the only place that gave me relief,” says Armando. “The people are great, the treatment is great and I feel 80 percent better. I’m like a different person.” 24

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

“I have three wonderful boys,” says Armando. “But because I never had girls of my own, my granddaughter means everything to me. I always wanted to dance at her wedding but didn’t think I could after I got neuropathy. Well, she just got married and not only did I get to dance with her, but I got a standing ovation, too.” For those experiencing tingling, numbness, loss of balance or other irritating symptoms in their legs and feet, Armando’s advice is simple: “Don’t give up, no matter how tough it gets. You’ve got to give treatment a chance.”

To learn more about peripheral neuropathy or treatment at Arrowhead Health Centers, visit or call 888-995-4899.

Keith Biggs, DC is a peripheral neuropathy expert and a big part of the award-winning healthcare team at Arrowhead Health Centers. Dr. Biggs has more than 27 years of experience, including extensive training in pain management techniques and the care and treatment of peripheral neuropathy. When he’s not helping patients find relief from their symptoms, you can find him spending time with his seven children and wife of 30 years or reading up on World War II aviation. Deborah Brandon Photography

Doctor’s Orders




Struggling with asthma? Check out page 13 to learn how you could receive free medication and treatment.

Spring is in the air which means birds are chirping, flowers are blooming and seasonal allergy symptoms are running wild. If you’re one of the millions of people who suffer from itchy eyes, congestion, sneezing and the other troublesome symptoms this time of year, this helpful survival guide will keep you from replacing your garden with plastic flowers and Astroturf.


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

Doctor’s Orders Avoid Outdoor Allergens Hundreds of nasty allergens like pollen, dust mites, molds and animal dander occupy the air you breathe. Here’s how to reduce your exposure to outdoor symptom triggers. • Keep an eye on the weather. Pollen counts are highest in the early morning and on dry, windy days. Precipitation helps clear allergens from the air so the best time to get outdoors is after a good rain. • Pass gardening chores, like pulling weeds and mowing the lawn, along to non-allergy sufferers. • Remove clothes you’ve worn outside and rinse off in the shower to wash away any allergens that may have gotten on your skin or hair. • Pollen and other irritants can stick to wet laundry so use your indoor dryer this time of year.

Keep Indoor Air Clean Allergens can lurk inside, too. While there’s no miracle product to banish them from your home, these tips will help you keep them outside where they belong. • Dust and vacuum your home often to remove allergens like pollen and dust mites that find their way indoors. • Change your air and vacuum filters frequently and use highefficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters. • Uses dehumidifiers and air purifiers to keep indoor air clean and dry. • Keep windows and doors closed when pollen counts are high.

Talk with Your Doc Did you know having seasonal allergies is a treatable medical condition? A quick visit with your doctor could help banish your allergies for good. • Ask about over-the-counter remedies like Claritin, Zyrtec or Allegra. There are many non-drowsy, non-habit forming options you can get without a prescription. • If your symptoms are more severe, ask for an allergy test. A blood or skin scratch test can check for hundreds of allergens and tell you exactly what you’re allergic to so you can treat the underlying cause of your symptoms.

Crazy fact! If you have asthma, allergies can increase your risk for an asthma attack. Avoid increased asthma symptoms by using your inhaler as instructed and scheduling a yearly evaluation with your doctor.

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Doctor’s Orders

ASK the


Like most people in Arizona, I’ve spent a lot of time in the sun over the years and I’m starting to worry about skin cancer. I don’t want to jump to conclusions, but I’m noticing more spots and freckles as I age. How can I tell if I have skin cancer and what can be done to treat it if I do? – Susan B.

Hi Susan, Great question! You’re not the only one who’s worried about skin cancer. Arizona has the highest skin cancer rates in the nation and the second highest rates in the world. And with skin cancer being the most common form of cancer resulting in one death per hour, early detection and treatment are essential to preventing and curing deadly skin cancers.


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

What is skin cancer? There are three main types of skin cancer and each derives from a different lineage of cell that normally lives in your skin. When your cells’ DNA becomes damaged by the sun, your cells mutate and become cancerous. Cancerous cells grow abnormally and aggressively, spreading throughout your body and invading normal, healthy tissue.

Doctor’s Orders MELANOMA Melanoma is the most aggressive form of skin cancer. It can form on any area of your skin, including your back, legs, stomach and even in between your toes. Melanoma grows quickly and can spread at rapid rates to internal organs such as your brain, liver and lymph nodes. SQUAMOUS & BASAL CELL CARCINOMAS Basal and squamous cell carcinomas are both caused by excessive ultraviolet (UV) exposure from the sun or tanning beds and usually form on your most exposed areas, such as the face, neck, arms and hands. Squamous is less aggressive than melanoma, but can evolve into an aggressive form. Basal cell carcinoma is usually the least aggressive, but the most common.

Who’s at risk? No matter your age, ethnicity or family history, you should always take precautions to protect yourself from the sun. These are a few of the more common risk factors. SUN EXPOSURE It only takes one bad sunburn to increase your risk of skin cancer. Even routine activities like driving,

walking across a parking lot while running errands or enjoying a cup of coffee on your patio can increase your risk for skin cancers when your skin is left unprotected. AGE While skin cancer affects 30 percent of people over 50-years-old and is the number one cancer in females ages 20 to 30, anyone can be at risk. PRIOR HISTORY OF SKIN CANCER Damaged skin cells can stay dormant for up to 20 years in some cases, so if you have a history of skin cancer, it’s possible for cancer to reoccur. SKIN TYPE Every ethnicity has a range of different skin colors and tones, so fair skin, whether African-American or Caucasian, is highly prone to sun damage and cancer growth. GENETIC PREDISPOSITION Like other cancers and diseases, skin cancer can be

Pro Tip Mark Your Calendar! Schedule a skin check with your doctor every year if you’ve never had skin cancer - or-

Dr. West’s At-Home Skin Check It’s important to examine your skin head-to-toe at least once every month. Look for the A, B, C, D, Es of pigmented (colored) moles and lesions and tell your doctor right away if you notice any of the following:

Ordinary Mole

Asymmetry The mole or lesion is not round in shape.

Border The edge is not well-defined, it looks feathered or the color appears to be leaking out.

Color The mole seems discolored or contains more than two colors.

every three months if you’ve been diagnosed in the past

Diameter The lesion is bigger than 6mm (about the size of an eraser on a pencil).

Evolution The mole has changed – growing, itching, bleeding or pain are all warning signs.

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Doctor’s Orders hereditary. If someone in your family has had skin cancer, your risk of contracting it increases.

Have a question for our health experts? Send your thoughts to editorial@

Is it preventable? Absolutely! Prevention is based on reducing your exposure to UV rays, so the more conscientious you can be about exposure to UV rays, the better your chances for avoiding skin cancer. AVOID TANNING Never, ever use a tanning bed. One session – that’s right, just one – doubles your risk of getting skin cancer. SLIP, SLOP, SLAP, SHADE In Arizona, we should also follow the “slip, slop, slap, shade” mantra they preach in Australia (home of the highest skin cancer rates in the world). Slip on clothing with an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) rating of 30+, slop on some sunscreen, slap on a hat and hang out in the shade whenever possible.

What if I end up getting it? Skin cancer is serious stuff, but that doesn’t mean all hope is lost if you do develop it. Treatment depends on the type, size, depth, and location of the cancer. Early detection is key in both preventing and treating skin cancer, so it’s important to schedule a skin check every year – or if you’ve had skin cancer in the past, you’ll need an exam every few months. Skin cancers can form anywhere on your body, so even though it may feel a little awkward to expose your undies to your doctor, a thorough, head-to-toe exam is the only way to catch skin cancers that may be lurking on your back, legs and other areas you may not be able to see on your own. If your doctor is able to catch suspicious moles and lesions early on, chances are, you’ll have a positive prognosis.

Meet the Expert Dr. Robert West is a skin cancer specialist and the lead medical doctor at Arrowhead Health Centers in Surprise. He is a Board Certified Internist and family practice provider with over 17 years of experience treating an array of health conditions including skin cancer, peripheral neuropathy, osteoarthritis, diabetes and more. Dr. West believes strongly in teamwork and the idea that the best health outcomes occur when a variety of medical professionals work together. When he’s not in the office helping patients, you can find Dr. West hiking, biking or sailing with his family. Deborah Brandon Photography

Answer Key Word Jumble BERH






LHAETH Sudoku  Puzzles    


4 7   8   9   2   1   FILLOWECUAR 1   2   6  NASKCS 3   5   7   C A U L I F L O W E 3  R5   9  S4   N8   A6   2   1   4   7   9   8   PICERE KSIN 6   8   5   2   1   3   R E C I P E 9   3   7  S6   K4   I5   8   4   2   1   7   9   Answer: S P R I N G 5  C 9  L 3  E8   A6   N4   7   6   1   5   3   2  

Sudoku #1

4 1   3   2   6   9   8   5   7  

7 2   5   1   8   3   4   9   6  

8 6   9   4   5   7   2   3   1  

9 3   4   7   2   6   1   8   5  

2 5   8   9   1   4   7   6   3  

1 7   6   8   3   5   9   4   2  

6 9   2   3   7   8   5   1   4  

3 8   7   5   4   1   6   2   9  

5 4   1   S 6   9   2   3   G 7   8  

3 1   6   5   4   7   8   2   9  

2 7   9   1   6   8   3   5   4  

8 6   5   4   7   1   2   9   3  

4 9   7   3   2   6   5   8   1  

1 2   3   8   9   5   4   6   7  

6 5   1   9   8   4   7   3   2  

9 4   2   7   5   3   6   1   8  

7 3   8   6   1   2   9   4   5  


5 3   2   8   4   1   6   9   7   8   1   7   6   9   2   5   4   3   4   6   9   5   7   3   1   2   8  

Sudoku #2 5 8   4   2   3   9   1   7   6  

5 4   1   6   9   2   3   7   8  


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

3 8   7   K 5   4   1   6   N 2   9  



Sudoku  Puzzles    



6 9   C2   3   7   N 8   5   I 1   4  

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Mommy Knows Best One mom’s guide to ultimate health & wellness, by expert “momager,” Vicki Dean

A little sage advice on growing a healthy herb garden, just in thyme for spring! I have always enjoyed having fresh herbs around the house for cooking and health purposes. I was partial to buying organic products, and it wasn’t unusual for my weekly herb purchases at the supermarket to add up to around $15 or more, which is admittedly more than I liked spending. The worst part of buying bundles of herbs from the grocery store was not being able to use them all before they wilted. What a waste! That was, until I saw the light and realized the many benefits of growing my own herb garden at home. You may think springtime in Arizona is a poor time to start an herb garden. That’s what I thought, too, but it’s actually a wonderful season to plant in the Sonoran Desert. As a native Phoenician, I have always been intimated by the heat when it comes to flora and fauna. (Between you and me, I even managed to kill a cactus once – which I used to think was impossible until I did it myself.) But planting a garden has turned out to be much easier than I originally

thought and is a wonderful family event. Choosing plants, preparing soil, getting dirty while digging holes and watering are activities that I am able to enjoy with my little ones. Another bonus has been experiencing my girls’ excitement when it’s time to go outside and gather what we need for dinner, or to make a tea. Since neither of my thumbs is even remotely green, each season I consult the internet (see sources at end of article) and my local nursery experts to find out which herbs are the best to plant and will last the longest. I also use these resources to help decide how to treat my soil and where to locate my garden for optimal sun, shade and drainage. For springtime we planted five new plants in our garden: mint, parsley, rosemary, thyme and basil. Each herb is packed with a plethora of health benefits, such as improving digestion, relieving arthritis symptoms, clearing up acne and even lowering stress. And nothing beats rosemary potatoes or a Caprese Salad made with fresh herbs pulled directly from your very own garden. The great news is these herbs can be purchased from nearly any nursery or home improvement store for less than $20 total and most will last for several months – some even longer. I’ve already saved a bundle on my grocery bills. You will be amazed at the immediate benefits of growing your own herbs and how much fun everyone will have gardening together. So grab your gardening gloves and your entire family and get planting!


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

Vitality Mint • Cure a tummy ache. Stomach aches will be better in no time if you drink some mint tea. Simply steep about one tablespoon of dry mint leaves in a half liter of boiling water for 30 minutes. Strain with a colander and allow the tea to cool before drinking. If you love the taste of the tea, try munching on the mint leaves for an added burst of flavor. • Relieve nausea. Even just the smell of freshly crushed mint leaves will alleviate a sour stomach. This is also a great natural remedy for morning sickness. • Fight anxiety, depression or exhaustion. Mint is a natural stimulant and the smell alone can be enough to increase your attention span and help you focus. To recharge quickly, simply sniff fresh mint leaves or take a few sips of mint tea. • Clear up stubborn acne. The salicylic acid found in mint helps clear up acne. Banish blemishes by making a paste of mint leaves and natural rose water. Apply the mixture to your face and gently cleanse after 20 minutes. Repeat as needed.

Parsley • Relieve rheumatoid arthritis (RA) symptoms. Compounds such as vitamin C and beta-carotene found in parsley have anti-inflammatory properties that help in controlling arthritis symptoms. Chop up fresh parsley and use to season meat, vegetables pasta and any other tasty meals you can think of. • Build strong bones. Osteoporosis occurs due to depleted levels of calcium in the bones. Apart from dairy products and vegetables, parsley is regarded as one of the best sources of calcium. • Fight kidney stones. The roots of parsley have been found useful in counteracting kidney stones. Adding parsley roots to boiling water and drinking it on a daily basis is known to be effective as a general cleanser for the body.

Get Growing • Herbs thrive with six to eight hours of sun daily, even in the low desert.

• Transplant herbs from 2- to 4-inch pots into improved garden soil.

• Whether planting in the ground or containers, herbs prefer morning to early afternoon sunlight, with protection from hot afternoon sun.

• Ultra-wet roots can kill your herb plants so help them thrive by arranging for excellent soil drainage.

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Vitality Basil • Erase blemishes. Just like mint, basil has been known to help combat bacteria that cause pimples. Boil a handful of basil leaves in one cup of water for 10 minutes. Let the liquid cool and pat onto your breakout zones with a clean cotton ball. Wait 10 minutes and then splash with water. Repeat once or twice a day. • Stop stress. Basil contains phytochemicals that studies suggest may lower cortisol, a hormone secreted when you’re feeling tense. If you’re feeling stressed, make yourself a cup of tea and toss two or three basil leaves into your cup while it’s steeping. You’ll feel more relaxed in no time! • PMS Relief. You know that tired feeling you often get during PMS? Chances are, your fatigue is directly related to low iron caused by your menstrual cycle. Basil is a super source of iron, so eating it before and during your “time-of-the-month” can help give your body a much needed boost of this essential nutrient.

Fun for Little Gardeners Read All About It Use gardening as a way to help young minds blossom. The week before planting your garden, visit your local library and pick up some gardening books. There are many fiction and non-fiction choices that will make the experience much more interesting for your kiddos and give them an interactive way to learn how plants grow and the importance of watering, weeding and protecting from pests. It’s also a great way to teach them about nutrition and where food comes from.

Bejewel Your Tools Feeling crafty? Gardening is a great, budget-friendly opportunity for your kids to explore their creativity. Visit your local home improvement store and pick up some inexpensive gardening tools like a rake, spade and hoe. They cost about $1.99 apiece and can be easily decorated with duct tape, stickers, puff y paint and adhesive nail gems. My kids could hardly wait to dig holes in our garden with their very own tools.


Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™

Vitality Thyme •  Improve vision. Thyme is rich in fat-soluble vitamin A and other antioxidants that promote healthy mucus membranes, skin and improved eyesight. •  Prevent hair loss. When combined with other herbs and used as an essential oil, thyme can strengthen the roots of your hair and improve its growth. •  Improve bad breath. Thyme has been used as an ingredient in mouthwash formulas and has been known to help treat gingivitis. For simple mouth wash, boil a hearty handful or two of thyme in a cup of water for only a few seconds. Set the mixture aside to steep for 10 minutes until cool. Gargle half of the mixture and swallow the other half.

Rosemary •  Boost immune system. Rosemary is a rich source of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds which are thought to help boost the immune system and improve blood circulation. Mix with Greek yogurt for a creamy and healthy sandwich spread or indulge by mixing a few chopped needles into softened butter and spreading on dinner bread. • I mprove memory. Studies have found that the herb has memoryenhancing properties. Clip a fresh rosemary leaf and breathe deeply daily to improve your memory. •  Detoxify the liver. The Caffeic and rosemarinic acids found in rosemary stimulate the liver to work more efficiently. Clip a few fresh rosemary sprigs and infuse with olive oil to use in flavorful, daily cooking.

Vicki Dean is a dedicated stay-at-home-momager who is passionate about creating a fun, warm and loving home for her family. Her outgoing personality and 17-years of experience as a marketing and sales pro have helped her find innovative and functional ways to help families stay healthy, save money and maximize happiness. *Vicki is not affiliated with the products in this article, nor their subsidiaries. Deborah Brandon Photography

Sources: Phoenix Home & Garden,,, Maricopa County Arizona Cooperative Extension The UofA College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Always be sure to consult your doctor before adding any herb to your daily health regimen.

Spring 2014 • Healthstyle Magazine™


Research Today for a Cure Tomorrow.

Become a Clinical Research Participant The Research Department at Arrowhead Health Centers is currently seeking volunteers. Qualified research participants may receive study medication and health assessments free of charge in addition to compensation for time and travel. For more information, please send us an e-mail at

We are currently enrolling studies for: • Type 2 Diabetes • Uncontrolled Asthma • High Blood Pressure

• Opioid-Induced Constipation • Prior Heart Attack or Stroke

Contact us today to see if you qualify! 623-334-4000 x7174


Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths among men and women in the United States. The good news is that colorectal cancer is one of the most preventable cancers. It is estimated that up to 85 percent of colorectal cancer can be prevented with screening colonoscopy, and the National Cancer Institute reports that deaths due to colorectal cancer have been declining as a result of screening.

Who Should Get One?

Over 90 percent of new cases of colorectal cancer occur in patients 50 years of age and older. Current recommendations are that you begin screening at age 50. If you are at high risk because of family history of cancer, or other factors, screening should begin at an earlier age.

Why Not Wait for Symptoms?

The most common symptom of colon cancer is no symptoms at all! By the time symptoms develop, colon cancer may be advanced and difficult to treat.

For more information, visit us at Glendale Arizona Digestive Health & Thunderbird Endoscopy Center Steven Kanner, MD Jodie Labowitz, MD Mahesh Mokhashi, MD James Singer, MD

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Healthstyle Magazine - Spring 2014  

Healthstyle Magazine - Spring 2012 Helping Arizonans Live Healthier Lifestyles, One Article at a Time.

Healthstyle Magazine - Spring 2014  

Healthstyle Magazine - Spring 2012 Helping Arizonans Live Healthier Lifestyles, One Article at a Time.


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