It's that time again when everyone is making their new year’s resolutions in an attempt to make changes in their lives. One of the primary objectives of my dental practice is to educate my patients about the importance of prevention. In doing so, I stress the impact of daily flossing, brushing, reducing sugar intake, and maintaining a regular dental check-up schedule. With every person, my hope is that I can influence their mindset, not only about their teeth, but their overall health and lifestyle. After all, when it comes to your health, the changes you make now will impact the rest of your life. Whatever resolutions you have made for this year, whether they are dental-related or not, use the well-known acronym “SMART” to help you achieve your goals. Effective goals are:
S- Specific: Be very clear about what it is you want to accomplish.
M- Measurable: Determine how you can track your progress by keeping score and making yourself more accountable.
A- Achievable: Sometimes it’s better to start small and take baby steps towards perfection. Be honest and realistic.
R- Relevant: Do something that hits close to home, and will hopefully inspire changes that are life-changing.
T- Time-bound: Make sure you give yourself enough time to accomplish your goals.
Have a happy and healthy 2018, everyone!
Simply put, probiotics are beneficial bacteria that exist in our gastrointestinal tract. Prebiotics promote, or feed the bacterial colonies and work synergistically with probiotics. In other words, prebiotics nourish and maintain probiotics, which restores and can improve gut health. Probiotic sources include yogurt, kimchi, sauerkraut, miso, tempeh and cultured non-dairy yogurts. Some good sources of prebiotics are bananas, onions, garlic, leeks, asparagus, artichokes, soybeans and whole-wheat foods. Products that combine both together are called synbiotics. For best results, try combining both in your usual diet by enjoying bananas atop yogurt or stir-frying asparagus with tempeh.
Are probiotic supplements needed? Probably not. By consuming regular food sources of probiotics, you can maintain the integrity of your gut and avoid disrupting your body's natural microbiome. At a minimum, prebiotics and probiotics are keys for good gut health. Research indicates that the gut bacterial environment is important for more than just digestive health.
Incorporating health-promoting functional foods, such as foods containing prebiotics and probiotics contributes to a healthier you!
For more advice on obtaining prebiotics and probiotics for your own specific health needs, especially if you have GI issues or a weakened immune system, our registered dietitian, Nasira, is here to help. Contact her today!
(425) 445-3914 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
According to Perfect Illusions, Eating Disorder and Family, five to ten million American women suffer from eating disorders, which means they also are facing body image issues as well. Females can have body image issues even without being diagnosed with an eating disorder. Children can easily pick up on comments about dieting concepts that might seem harmless, such as setting a boundary to high fat foods or eating less. When girls enter their teen years, they develop perceptions about dieting can lead to body distortion. Many factors can be stimulus for weight anxieties in girls and add influence to their eating habits in harmful ways, including:
Signs a Child Has a Negative Body Image
Warning signs of an unhealthy body image in children can help parents recognize problems early. Parents should watch for these signs:
Encourage open dialogue: Talk with your children about weight and try to inspire them to share their thoughts and feelings about body image whenever they arise. Children need to feel supported when they want to share their feelings about their weight struggles. Be sure to listen and recognize that all feelings are real. It is okay to share your experiences if you have had body image issues. It is best to explain that children and teens come in all different shapes and sizes and support inner beauty exploration.
Take action: Children learn quickly, and they learn best by example. Teach children habits that assist them to stay healthy for life. If your child is elementary age or younger and you have weight concerns, don’t talk about it negatively, rather start making lifestyle changes as a family. The goal should be to serve regular, balanced family meals and snacks. Try to reduce the time a child spends watching television or playing video games. Be creative in finding ways to spend time together actively.
A united front: Parents and other important adult relatives are should be on the same page. Mixed messages about weight can make unhealthy concerns for a child’s self-esteem.
Talk with a doctor: Speak with your family doctor privately about weight concerns without your children being present. Talk about precise concerns and solutions about a growth pattern and ask for suggestions for positive changes in your family’s eating habits and activity levels.
Seek advice: Check out local programs and professionals who specialize in youth advocacy. Look for a registered dietitian nutritionist with experience in pediatric weight management. Many hospitals and clinics have comprehensive programs with educational activities for both kids and adult family members. Some of these options may be covered by reliable health insurance plans.
Personal perceptions of weight gain for individual teens can be a struggle. All communication between parents and teens should be a fair and non-judgmental interaction; otherwise, teens will not want to talk to their parents when they most need their support. Parents need to have open communication with other teen advocates, such as family doctors and registered dietitian nutritionists to find healthy solutions to teen weight problems.
These five simple measures will provide the majority of people with a lifetime of excellent oral health. The key is to start our children out with this knowledge and these good habits in order to stop the destructive cycle that continues to plague mankind.
Join our practice in our crusade to promote preventive health care for all!
Do you have a persistent sweet tooth? Are you aware of the many dangers of giving into your cravings? In general, Americans consume too much sugar and the supporting statistics are appalling. The daily average consumption of added sugar by individuals is 300 calories (20 teaspoons or 80 grams). The current recommendation for added sugar by the American Heart Association is less than six teaspoons (24 grams) per day for women and nine teaspoons (36 grams) per day for men. That means the average American is consuming 11-14 teaspoons (44-56 grams) above the recommendation. Although most people could not imagine eating 14 teaspoons of white sugar, it is easy to do consume that quantity because our food has so much sugar added to it.
The most common sources of added sugar in our diets (Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare in 2015) are:
There are several alternatives to high-calorie sweeteners, such as sugar alcohols (Xylitol, Sorbitol, Maltitol, Mannitol), which naturally exist in plants, are not completely absorbed, have lower glycemic index than white sugar, have fewer calories per gram and do not promote tooth decay. The FDA recognizes Erythritol, Stevia, Isomalt, Sorbitol and Maltitol as being safe alternatives to white sugar because they are extracted from fruits, fermented foods, natural herbs, beets, stone fruits, berries, and starches.
Another alternative to traditional sweeteners is to use one of the FDA-approved sweeteners, such as Saccharin (Sweet-n-Low), Aspartame (NutraSweet/Equal), Sucralose (Splenda), although several of these have a bitter after taste and are chemically altered. Even though sweet foods exist naturally, like fresh fruits, our food supply has been overtaken by highly stimulating and overly sweet foods, so that natural sugars are less satisfying to a sweet tooth. This can be changed by replacing sugary desserts with fresh fruit, or fruit and yogurt-based desserts. Consuming less refined sugar will readjust your taste preferences so that you find natural sweetness more satisfying.
What are the dangers of added sugars?
Added sugar consumption contributes to weight gain and obesity. More than 60% of the global disease will be associated with obesity by 2020. In addition to extra calories, excess sugar elevates cholesterol imbalance and deregulates the body’s insulin response so that it takes more insulin to balance blood glucose. Excess sugar also promotes visceral and intrahepatic fat deposition and increases triglyceride levels and blood pressure. Sugary treats displace nutrient-dense healthy foods, so vitamin and mineral intake is compromised.
How can we take control of added sugar intake?
If you love sweets, consider taking some important steps to control your sweet tooth to improve your oral health and to avoid systemic disease.
Bones and teeth are made of the same material, and diet has an important role in maintaining bone tissue. Weakened bones can cause osteoporosis and increase fracture risk. This silent disease often goes undetected until a fracture occurs. It can strike at any age, however, osteoporosis most often occurs in people over age 50, and according to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, half of women and one in four men over the age of 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis. Maintaining bone health in youth will impact the density of your bones as you age. A healthful diet and regular weight-bearing activity are extremely important to ensure bone tissue continues to build.
Bones are living tissue, constantly under construction. Special cells break down bone tissue (osteoclasts) and other cells (osteoblasts) use the calcium and nutrients from foods you eat to build new bone. If you are not physically active or getting the nutrition you need, bones become less dense, weaker and more likely to fracture.
Calcium, is the major nutrient needed to form new bone cells. Dairy foods are calcium-rich foods including milk, yogurt and cheese, and calcium-fortified soy milk, and fortified cereal. Some plant sources also provide calcium, such as soybeans, dark green leafy vegetables and calcium-fortified tofu.
Calcium needs vary at different stages of life, and the following lists the calcium need for various age groups:
Your oral health may be a window to your overall health. The mouth, like many areas of the body, is loaded with bacteria. Proper oral hygiene (i.e., flossing and brushing) along with your body's natural defenses help keep these bacteria under control. Research suggests that oral bacteria and the inflammation associated with gum disease may play a role in chronic diseases, such as:
Talk to your dentist as soon as an oral health problem arises. Taking good care of your teeth is a long-term investment in your overall health!
Spring breaks and bikini season are upon us! Working out, fresh produce, and spring cleaning are on our mind. By now, you have likely settled into your New Year's Resolutions...or forgotten about them altogether! Either way, spring is a season of new beginnings, so why not revitalize and revamp your fitness regime? Perhaps you've been stuck in an exercise rut, or are unsure where you're at with your weight-loss goals. Here are some ideas for a spring workout makeover:
Increase the frequency or intensity of your workouts - summer will be here soon, so adding just one or two workouts per week will help accelerate weight loss and help you slim down for swim suits, shorts and tank tops. Perhaps you're used to walking for 20 minutes per day, and that has become easy for you. Try adding 10 minutes to your walk, or pick up the pace to increase calorie expenditure.
Register for a 5K or a marathon - joining a race for the first time can be a huge milestone and an admirable accomplishment. Encourage friends and family to join you in a local event and run for a good cause. You will be more motivated to train and less likely to skip workouts knowing that you have an upcoming race.
Get outdoors - instead of your typical television marathons of poker night, take your activities outdoors for a change to get moving! Volleyball, basketball, or badminton are family-friendly games that allow you to laugh and have fun while being active.
Add more movement to your day - find ways to be more physically active by default. Take the long walking route to the mailbox, always take the stairs, and park farther away from shopping venues. Steps add up throughout the day, and you should aim for at least 10,000 steps each day.
By Rich Burkholder, DDS
You can barely move your shaking fingers.
You’re ashamed to smile, so everyone thinks you’re grumpy.
You can’t remember what day it is.
You’re always tired.
You constantly have a nasty taste in your mouth, your food tastes odd, and…
something in the room smells really bad!
When your children and grandchildren visit they seem “stand offish”,
don’t stay long and don’t kiss you goodbye anymore.
You’re told it’s your 100th birthday tomorrow and you think,
“Oh great, another year of suffering!”
When pain and infection are streaming through your body, and your smile looks scary, it is your entire being, (body, soul, mind and spirit) that suffers.
Quality of life matters to the end, and helping your loved ones achieve that goal is a true gift.
As we grow older, maintaining our oral health becomes more difficult for many reasons and can lead to big problems including a diminished quality of life:
1. Teeth grinding and clenching break down the teeth and supporting structures
2. Fear (dentaphobia) leading to neglect
3. Memory can deteriorate and we forget all about cleaning our mouth
4. Saliva flow diminishes, causing dry mouth which makes you more cavity prone
5. Manual dexterity becomes impaired due to arthritis, tremors, etc., so it is more difficult to brush and floss
6. Diet can change, and if sugar intake isn’t controlled, that adds to the problem
7. Inability to chew food adequately can lead to nutritional deficiencies
8. Medications can affect diet, salivary flow, appetite, etc
9. Gum disease and chronic infection which are also linked to heart disease
10. Tooth decay resulting in tooth loss
11. Chronic pain and swelling
12. Odor - bad breath (halitosis)
13. Appearance and self dignity are compromised
Our Fashion Isle Smiles team has collaborated with the local assisted living facility Crown Cove, where we work hard with the caretakers to help their residents maintain quality oral hygiene. Please help your loved ones get the care they need during a tough era of life for a dignified, clean, happy and healthy journey to the end.