Blog

Fighting Inflammation with Food

There are currently more than 50 million people suffering from arthritis in the United States, according to the Arthritis Foundation. Arthritis is the inflammation of joints typically accompanied by pain. Eating certain foods can either work to alleviate or exacerbate symptoms of inflammation.

Foods that are high in antioxidants and popexels-photo-70862lyphenols have been found to fight inflammation. Here are some of the top anti-inflammatory foods to add to your diet right now:

  1. Green leafy vegetables such as spinach and swiss chard.
  2. Broccoli
  3. Blueberries
  4. Salmon
  5. Beets

On the contrary, there are also foods that increase inflammation making autoimmune conditions even worse. Here are some of the offenders to start avoiding:

  1. Sugar, such as donuts, candy and soda.
  2. Fried foods
  3. Refined flour and sugar, such as many breakfast cereals, breads and pastas.
  4. Dairy
  5. Processed meats such as bologna, salami and hot dogs.

In general, always try to make healthy food choices and avoid refined and processed foods when possible. If you’re experiencing joint pain or have questions,we’d be happy to speak with you! Please call us at 618-288-9460 or visit www.c4ao.com for more information.

Signs You Are In Need of Knee Replacement

doctor-1740044_640According to a study performed by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, as of 2014 there are 4.7 million Americans that have had knee replacement surgery. While surgery should always be considered a final option, a total knee replacement can help improve a patient’s quality of life. Here are six signs that you may need to speak with your doctor about a total knee replacement (TKR):

  • Your knee loses range of motion and you have difficulty performing activities such as climbing stairs, getting in and out of vehicles, chairs, and the shower/tub.
  • The pain is so great that it begins to affect your quality of life, including your sleep.
  • The use of injections and/or medication is no longer helping.
  • It feels as though your knee joint is bone-on-bone or lacks cartilage.
  • You have rheumatoid arthritis or a previous ACL injury, which can increase your risk.
  • Your knee(s) remain stiff after sitting for long periods of time or when getting out of bed in the morning.

It’s important to take a conservative approach and exhaust all other options before considering surgery. Patients may try restricting physical activity, perform stretches and special exercises, and/or injections. However, if you are still experiencing pain and reduced mobility, please call us to schedule a consultation at 618-288-9460 or visit www.c4ao.com for more information.

5 Ways To Put The Happy Back In “Happy Holidays”

pexels-photo-253208December marks the start of the holiday season; spending time with family and friends, Christmas shopping, volunteering, fun winter activities, decorating your home to perfection and finding just the right bow to place on your presents under the tree. Fun, right? Yes . . . unless you’ve committed to three different ugly sweater parties and booked yourself into oblivion. While this time of year is typically a time to rejoice, many can begin to feel overwhelmed. Ensure tidings of joy with the below tips:

  1. Stretch away the stress. Stretching helps relieve muscles and relax your mind, which can improve your overall health. No time? Here’s a simple stretch you can do anywhere: Stand up straight with your feet together and hands clasped above your head (arms straight). Then bend to each side for several seconds breathing deeply. Doesn’t that feel better?
  2. Work off that wassail. Exercising is already known to be a great stress reliever since it causes the body to release endorphins. It also allows you to take a break from your busy schedule and clear your head.
  3. Do you wanna build a snowman? Okay, building a snowman might be a bit of a stretch, but getting out in the fresh air and sunshine will definitely help. Sunshine is a proven mood-booster. Plus, the Vitamind D from sunlight is essential for bone health.
  4. Put the “No” in Noel. Repeat after us, “It is okay to say no.” We often get caught up in trying to attend every event and not wanting to let anyone down. However, you’re not helping anyone if you’re spread to thin, overworked and over stressed. Prioritize your events/activities and focus on the items at the top of the list. You’ll be able to provide your full time and attention and actually enjoy yourself. We promise this won’t land you on the naughty list.
  5. Relax and remember what the holidays are all about. Don’t worry if Sandy’s gingerbread house is an exact replica of the White House complete with tiny Christmas lights. Don’t worry if you didn’t get that bonus to build your dream pool in the backyard (right, Clark Griswold?). Enjoy your family and friends. Savor those Christmas cookies. Take in all the sights and sounds of the season and just breathe.

As 2016 comes to an end, we want to thank all of our wonderful patients for allowing us to provide their orthopedic care. We hope everyone has a very happy holiday! If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, call us at 618-288-9460. Please visit www.c4ao.com for more information.

You Are What You Eat

pexels-photo-208456Remember your mother telling you to eat your vegetables? Well, she was right. Leafy green vegetables such as lettuce, spinach and arugula are essential for healthy bones thanks to their high calcium content. Other high-calcium foods include milk (obviously), salmon, broccoli, cheese, breads, pastas and even tofu to name a few. If you are not getting sufficient amounts of calcium you are putting your self at risk of osteoporosis, a weakening of the bones.

The body also needs Vitamin D in order to absorb calcium. Eggs (make sure to include the yolk) are a great source. Yogurt, spinach, sardines and salmon provide both Vitamin D and calcium. If you have trouble meeting the required calcium intake (between 1,000 mg and 1,300 mg depending on age and sex), you might consider calcium supplements. Try to avoid soda as it can hinder the calcium absorption.

For more Vitamin D and calcium-rich foods and recipes check out our Pinterest Board, “You Are What You Eat,” here: https://www.pinterest.com/C4AO/you-are-what-you-eat/. If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, call us at 618-288-9460. Please visit www.c4ao.com for more information.

Crossfit Craze Conundrum

For the past several years the Crossfit craze has been sweeping the nation. The thumping music, supporticao-crossfitve, high-fiving atmosphere and the workouts that constantly test your limits and drive participants to set new personal records can be addicting. We recently had the honor of sponsoring the Festivus Games at J5 Crossfit in Collinsville, IL and we can tell you that it is a FUN atmosphere featuring incredible feats of strength. It’s great that people are so pumped to hit the gym, but there are also injuries associated with this strenuous exercise.

Exercise is important. Everyone knows that. But did you also know that it is equally important for bone health as it is muscle health? In fact, it can help ward off osteoporosis and assist in one’s balance and coordination. However, Crossfit’s repetitive motions when trying to reach those PR’s can lead to overuse injuries. Because the athletes are so focused on setting personal records they often times lack focus on their form which can lead to muscle swelling, knee, shoulder, hip, elbow and hand injuries.

Still, Crossfit can be a great form of exercise for athletic individuals. Crossfitters just need to make sure they always listen to their bodies and slow down or take breaks as needed. If you are just getting started back into an exercise routine, we recommend  working your way up to a Crossfit status. Start slow with walking, participating in fitness classes or working out with a trainer at a local gym until your body is ready for the more intense workout Crossfit offers.

If you have any questions or are experiencing any pain or discomfort, please call us at 618-288-9460. Visit www.c4ao.com for more information.