Dr. Cone's Newsletter — May 2006
Hello to Everyone from Dr. Cone!
Welcome to May and the feeling like we are getting into the swing of summer. Soon school will be out and kids and teachers will be running wild through the town. I am not sure who will be happier, kids or teachers? I'll let you decide! I hope that this newsletter finds everyone feeling physically well and not getting sick very often. If you are- I hope you know what to do! Give me a call if you are feeling sick. At the office here I do allergy testing, find out what dietary things are irritating people's immune systems, recommend certain herbs, vitamins, or minerals and help you stop the cycle of being sick » better » sick » better » sick » better, etc. etc. etc. Or if you have some aches or pains lets fix it up with some chiropractic care or acupuncture. I recommend that everyone come by at least twice a year for a checkup anyway. That is the best way to catch problems when they are small. Just like with the dentist checkup- it is good to find things and fix them when they are small instead of having your head fall off because of too many loose screws.
I have some new things going on here at the office. First of all I have a new office! Many of you may know that A Touch of Wellness had a changeup. Suzy Goodwin decided to spend more time with her 2 growing boys and do more massages and less crying and pulling her hair during managing an office. So Suzy is happily doing massages part time (just call me if you need an appointment with her) and being a full time mom. After talking it over with Suzy and Tim Goodwin I decided to relocate the office to a more central location near 635 and 75. I know some of you will be delighted with it and others will hate it. I hope it all comes out in the wash eventually. But for me it has been a mad dash for putting out fires and calling people and basically trying to stay on a bucking bull. But now that May is here it is all calming down and my office is working, I am on most insurance companies, and many patients know where I am. So far so good. Whew
Also, I ran my first marathon in April just to see if I could do it. And yes, I am still alive! I am proud that I finished it and now I can relate (feel sorry for) runners more closely! :-)
You may know someone who has wrist pain or even be diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome. Many of us today sit in front of computers and type a lot. Others may actively use their hands doing hard, physical work. And sometimes it seems like the more you use your hands the more your wrists hurt. This is all too common. I am sad to hear of patients who are on pain medication for this because this condition is usually easily fixable with chiropractic care. And I cringe when I hear that someone had to have carpal tunnel surgery also. Sometimes the surgery is done and the pain is still there! When someone has wrist pain or carpal tunnel pain the first thing I think of is neck problems. Believe it or not, most wrist pain is coming from a primary problem in the neck! The way it works is this-- The nerves in your spine exit from your neck and go down to the wrist. These nerves tell your brain what your wrist or hand is feeling. They also tell the muscles what to do. If the nerves get pinched or squeezed a little bit as they exit from the neck they can have trouble sending the correct signals.
This is what usually happens. First, the nerve starts to have trouble telling the muscles what to do efficiently. And when you have muscles that aren't working correctly your joints start to hurt. And second, if the nerves are irritated they can start to feel like something is hurting! And sometimes an irritated nerve can get irritated enough that the area it has sensation for is numb or burning, especially if it goes on long enough. The way to fix this is to do a thorough checkup for the neck and wrists. All too often the wrists are actually doing pretty good even though there is wrist pain. 95% of the time the real problem is coming from the neck and some chiropractic adjustments really fix up those neck problems quickly. If you or someone you know has wrist pain please come by my office for a complimentary wrist/neck exam. I bet we can fix that problem up without the need for lifelong pain killers or surgery!
Recently my friend Kirk Whiteman was asking me about nutrition for athletes. As I was talking to him I realized that I should probably talk a little about this subject and explain a few things. First of all, athletes (as you probably know) need some extra nutrients and need to eat well to perform at their best. You can't just eat at McDonald's every day and expect to win the bike race, wrestling match, soccer game, or marathon. So a balanced diet is essential. But once we get past that obvious little nugget we come to extra nutrients. There are so many sports oriented aids that we could get bogged down trying to talk about them all so I won't. I'll just discuss my top 5 favorites.
The absolute number one thing that most athletes need is a well absorbed multi. This will cover the bases for minerals and vitamins that may be used up during intense performance or strenuous training. I recommend Thorne's Basic Nutrients #3 as a starting place for most athletes or else perhaps Al's Formula (men over 40), or Metafem (Thorne also) for women over 40. These multis have the powerful combination of all the right ingredients plus are in my opinion the best absorbed nutrients of any that are available for prescription through a pharmacist or doctor, much less what you get off the shelf at your corner health food store.
The second nutrient that would be necessary for a hard training athlete is going to be Probiomine, a special combination of 4 amino acids. This combination is showing itself to encourage muscle growth, stronger tendons and ligaments, faster recovery from workouts, softer skin, and better sleeping. Basically I see that Probiomine helps prevent injuries with stronger ligaments and tendons as well as help to recover from workouts quicker and be less tired.
The number 3 thing I would recommend for athletes is a high quality essential fatty acid such as a fish oil or combination of borage oil, black currant seed oil, flax oil, etc. These essential fatty acids are lacking in our American diet and are essential for an athlete to have the building blocks for neurotransmitters and hormones. Remember- enough neurotransmitters = fast nerve signals = fast muscle reaction = great performance!
The number 4 item on my list would be a quality concentrated food supplement like Juice Plus or Greens First. These products are basically a combination of concentrated and dried vegetables and fruits that have proven records for being good for you- broccoli, barley grass, cherries, wheat grass, etc. These concentrated foods help raise an athletes blood levels of antioxidants as well as provide anti-cancer compounds to the body. Vegetables and fruits are absolutely healthy for us and these concentrated sources are helpful for getting more into us than we can often get on our plates.
The fifth thing that I might recommend for an athlete in competition would be perhaps some creatine. Creatine is helpful for increasing the body's ability to store energy for a burst of activity. Athletes who take creatine find that they are able to push harder or go more intensely for a longer time than without it. Some athletes notice a boost in performance. Other athletes are not really benefited by creatine. It is an individual thing. So creatine may be helpful.
Remember that I listed these items in order of importance. I often see athletes taking Creatine but nothing else. This is a mistake. I hear about athletes taking "a good one-a-day multi" but when I exam it I see that it is basically junk and none of the ingredients are going to be absorbed into the body. And sometimes an athlete is tempted to get a meal replacement formula that has everything under the sun thrown into the mix. This is ineffective because often certain ingredients (like the amino acids in Probiomine) need to be taken separately from other ingredients and on an empty stomach. So I frequently counsel athletes who are taking waaaay too much stuff and it isn't working well. They need to thin out their supplements big time. And other athletes need to add one or two things that they really need. The big trick is to make sure that the ingredients are absorbed, are appropriate, and that you are not wasting your money. At my office I carry all these supplements with the exception of creatine. If anybody has any questions feel free to call me on the phone and I'll do my best to discuss your concerns.- Dr. Cone
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