Recently, we introduced a new column, written by teenagers, called Teen Voices. The idea behind it is to help parents (and other adults) get a glimpse of the world through a teen’s eyes. In raising my own four children, I found striving to better understand their world through their eyes was one of the most powerful tools I could use. This simple approach does help build a foundation of trust; however, building trust with a teenager is a day-to-day business. Some days, you are best friends. The next day, one of us is from another planet. As in most things, it is a process. Listening (when my 15-year-old talks to me) is more important than speaking. No Einstein moment here. The goal is to learn something, not tell something, and keeping that in focus is paramount to building trust. But let’s step back to the beginning, long before the teen years.
by Dian Freeman
Few words today can bring about more discussion and debate than the word “cholesterol”. The discussion generally centers around how high or how low one’s personal cholesterol levels are, while the debate generally addresses the best way to lower those numbers or even on how to eliminate cholesterol altogether. Such discussions and debates are based both upon misinformation and the lack of information about the value of cholesterol to the body. Continue reading
by Alison James
Australian author, speaker and dating coach Mark Rosenfeld knows firsthand the challenges of navigating romantic relationships. After struggling with shyness, he took on a confidence-boosting job as an erotic dancer in 2011, working with men at both ends of the assertiveness spectrum. In this milieu, he gained a better understanding of men’s thoughts and actions related to women. Through his career as a dancer while in his own satisfying relationship, Rosenfeld also personally communicated with about 50,000 women, many of which opened up about their own trials and tribulations with dating.
by Carrie Jackson & Karen G. Meshkov
George Armstrong, from Western Chester County, is at the forefront of a movement to allow veterans in Pennsylvania legal access to medical marijuana, or MMJ. With more than 800,000 veterans, Pennsylvania hosts a large community of people that could benefit from treatment of combat-related conditions, such as chronic pain, post-traumatic stress disorder and mental illness. Armstrong is an outspoken advocate for the PA Vets for Cannabis Program, with the aim of convincing the federal government to legalize marijuana. Continue reading
Ignore those that say life doesn’t come with a manual. Kelly McGrath Martinsen has exactly the guide you need to make life richer and more insightful with her new book, A Year of Inspired Living: Essays and Guided Journaling for Self-Reflection.
This is the handbook for anyone that wants to embrace a better life. Through entertaining anecdotes and guided journal pages, A Year of Inspired Living helps the reader create their very own personalized self-help book.
Star Advanced Medicine, an integrative medical practice in Warminster, is now adding Exilis Ultra 360 treatments to its list of services, which already includes regenerative orthopedic procedures and bio-identical hormone optimization. The Exilis Ultra 360 is a pain-free way for patients to quickly and easily smooth wrinkles and experience shaping, tightening, cellulite reduction and facial rejuvenation.
Just as Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, said a long time ago, “Let food be thy medicine.” For those with diabetes, this is especially true.
An article published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry suggests that specific compounds in cocoa may help with Type 2 diabetes. Researchers from Brigham Young University and Virginia Tech fed animals a high-fat diet, combined with cocoa and found the animals had decreased obesity and a greater ability to handle high blood sugar levels.
by Mandy Francis
The popularity of massage continues to rise as studies confirm the value of massage for reducing stress, pain and muscle tension. The Mayo Clinic even recently opened a spa to offer massage and acupuncture. Nita Keesler, massage therapist, talks about the importance of massage for men.
In your practice, what kinds of issues do you see that are specific to men? Typically, male clients have tight shoulders, low back/hips and hamstrings. Sciatic pain, rotator cuff issues and carpal tunnel syndrome also tend to be common. Restricted movement can affect posture, and sitting can exacerbate pain, which is especially problematic if someone works at a computer or drives for a living.
Weight training and running are popular forms of exercise for many guys. How does that impact their flexibility, and how can massage help support them in those practices? Massage therapy is very beneficial to men that lift weights, run or participate in other cardiovascular exercise because it prevents and alleviates restrictions in the muscles. “Restrictions” can originate from various injuries, improper posture or repetitive motions, as in the case of weightlifting. Massage also helps to prevent what’s called delayed onset muscle soreness, so the body can heal faster with massage than with rest alone.
What benefits can men expect from greater flexibility? Men can gain improved range of motion and better posture, which affect health on many levels, including digestion, mood and, of course, appearance. Massage helps make the muscles more supple by helping to oxygenate with fresh blood. Think of tight muscles as a kink in a hose—when tight, the muscles can entrap blood vessels and nerves, creating pain. Massage helps to alleviate that. Massage combined with assisted stretching, whether it is sports stretching or Thai massage—which is what I incorporate into my practice—is even more beneficial. When someone else is stretching our bodies, we are able to stretch a bit further because our muscles are relaxed. With Thai massage we are also being massaged while being stretched, so the results are even more profound.
How many sessions do men need to attend before experiencing a noticeable difference? Everyone is unique. Results will depend on how long they have had their physical issues, whether they have any scar tissue, the amount of stress they typically have and their compliance to self-care, particularly stretching and body awareness. But many have felt relief in one to two sessions. With weekly or biweekly sessions, many have had significant results within six to 10 sessions and continue with monthly or bimonthly maintenance.
What else do you want people to know? Our bodies are meant to move in several planes of movement. Many exercises, including walking, running, cycling and the elliptical, have us in only one repetitive plane of movement. These are all great ways to work out, but it is imperative to supplement with other modalities such as weight training, which by design, if done correctly, requires us to use our muscles in a balanced way. Stretching is the most important thing we can do to help prevent injuries. Massage and assisted stretching are exceptional in that they help us get to that place of flexibility so that we are able to more easily do it on our own.
Also important is an understanding of “how and why” our bodies have reached their current states. I offer posture and flexibility workshops for individuals and for workplaces to help bring this understanding in a simple way, along with techniques that participants can use throughout their busy day.
Nita Keesler is a licensed and board-certified massage and bodywork therapist with over 20 years of experience. For more information, call 267-980-1727, email iNitaUnwind@gmail.com or visit Back-In-Balance.MassageTherapy.com. Check for discount package pricing, current specials and new client specials.