Monthly Archives: June 2016

Three Nutrition Tips to Speed Up Your Recovery

Summer is arriving in just a couple of short weeks. When you think of summer, does playing volley ball at the beach come to mind? Do you crave night time walks on those cool breezy days? Or do you enjoy a bike ride along the shore?

Summer 1

No matter what your favorite activity is, you can agree it will be severely inhibited if you are in pain, discomfort, or are healing from a surgery. How can you heal as quickly as possible? Don’t know where to look for the cure to pain?

Look no further! Not only will a physical therapist guide you to optimal healing, but regular exercises prescribed by the therapist (and practicing these exercises at home) will ultimately speed the recovery process.

“Your therapist will guide you through safe exercises as you heal from surgery but if you are not eating good food, not drinking enough water, and participating in activities such as smoking your rate of healing will be slow.”

Summer 2

Does this mean you have to say good bye to your favorite foods? Of course not! However, overall health, wellness, and nutrition do play a significant role in the healing process, along with regular and continued physical therapy visits.

Here are Three Nutrition Tips that can aid in your recovery:

  1. Choose high protein foods. Protein helps our muscles grow, recuperate, and strengthen.  Try to aim for 30 grams of protein at each meal to not only ensure that you are consuming enough protein, but to also help with the healing process.  Choose lean protein sources, such as chicken without the skin, lean beef (such as sirloin), lean pork (pork loin), fish, egg whites, and fat free/low fat (1%) dairy.  Choosing lean sources of protein will decrease saturated fat intake, which is shown to cause inflammation in the body.
  2. Aim for 25-35 grams of fiber each day. Not having enough fiber in our daily diet can inhibit the digestion process, which can lead to uncomfortable gas, bloating, and stomach pains.  This can prevent you from wanting to do your daily exercises. Choose whole wheat carbohydrates, fresh fruits/vegetables, and other sources high in fiber.  Fresh fruits and vegetables will also aid in decreasing inflammation in the body, aiding in recovery.
  3. Maintain a healthy weight. Do you have health goals you want to achieve by the summer? Schedule a session a Registered Dietitian to help design a plan that will help you achieve the goals you want!

 Summer 3

Start preparing for the activities you would love to do this summer.  Call us at 609-738-3144 to learn how, today!

Michele Wroblewski, RDN

Caruso Physical Therapy and Nutrition, LLC

1278 Yardville Allentown Rd. Suite 3

Allentown, NJ 08501

www.carusoptrd.com

609-738-3143

References:

http://www.eatright.org/resource/fitness/training-and-recovery/endurance-and-cardio/eating-for-strength-and-recovery

http://www.peakperformanceompt.com/2013/03/top-nutrition-tips-for-physical-therapy/

 

Goodbye Comfort Food, Hello Summer Fruit!

Barbecues, picnics, pool side parties, smoothies, and sunshine provide us with the atmosphere that craves refreshing snack items.  What is a sweet snack that increases as the sun increases its face time with the world? If “fruit” popped into your head, you must be either extremely intuitive or psychic! (Or you read the title above.)

However, in order to actually enjoy the fruit that we seek, we must be careful to choose fruits that are ready or safe to be eaten.


Summer Fruits 1

Each fruit has its own signs to look out for when it is either no longer edible, just the right ripening, or not ripe enough.  In order to enjoy your fruits to the fullest potential, there are tips to examining when choosing the perfect fruit to bring home to the family to enjoy.

Here is your cheat sheet to several of summer’s favorite fruits! What should you look for?

  1. Apricots. The perfect apricot is firm and plump, or bright orange-gold in color. Avoid any apricots that have a green color, for they are not ready to enjoy! The prime candidate will have smooth skin, and slightly sinks to a gentle pressure.  If you happen to purchase an apricot that is not quite ready for consumption, store in a paper bag to speed the process!
  2. Cherries. It’s all about the color. Bing cherries will appear black, Lambert cherries will be a bright crimson color, and Queen Anne cherries will be mostly yellow. Choose the cherries that have stems attached, and keep them refrigerated to keep them fresh!
  3. Mangos. Although a sweet light fruit, they should yield to a slight pressure. It will increase in redness as it ripens. Mangos with a large amount of black freckles should be avoided. They can be kept at room temperature. They taste excellent with fish!
  4. Melon. The perfect melon will be free from cracks or soft spots. In the past, it was said that one should shake the melon to determine ripeness. This has been determined to be just another folklore in the world of nutrition.The steps for the most popular of the melons are as follows. “Select a honeydew melon that is a pale creamy yellow, with tiny freckles on the skin. Follow these tips when purchasing a watermelon: Choose one that has a moderately shiny rind and a waxy bloom covering it, select one with a bottom that is yellow, not green-white, do not choose one that has a green stem still attached, avoid buying cut watermelon that has white seeds, which is a sign of immaturity.”
    Summer Fruits 2
  5. Pineapple. Hitting a pineapple or pulling the crown leafs are not a reliable method to measure ripeness. Instead, “look for firm fruit that seems heavy for its size and has fresh-looking green leaves. Choose a pineapple with a dry base.” For the best taste, a pineapple should be left at room temperature for 1-2 days.
  6. Strawberries. Go for the berries with an all-around red color and green caps. Pick the picture perfect strawberries, and keep them cool for optimal health! Take out the bruised berries to keep the others healthy!
  7. Peach. The fuzzy fruit. Find peaches that are free of bruises, and are a tad on the softer side. Do not choose green peaches. Unlike other fruits, as they ripen they will NOT become sweeter. The color of the peach determines the type of fruit!
  8. Summer Fruits 3

Do any other summer fruits come to mind? Take out that smart phone of yours and look up how to make these delights even more delightful! 30 seconds of research will ultimately lead to a healthy, safe, and wonderful eating experience!

Do you have further questions about fruits and vegetables? Call today! 609-738-3143

 

Michele Wroblewski, RDN

Caruso Physical Therapy and Nutrition, LLC

1278 Yardville Allentown Rd. Suite 3

Allentown, NJ 08501

www.carusoptrd.com

609-738-3143

References 

Retrieved from: http://www.nutrition411.com/content/fruits-summer/page/0/1, June 13, 2016.

Turmeric: What’s All the Hype?

Television, TV personalities, radio shows, internet ads, Facebook articles, Twitter, Instagram, and “insert other media platform here” all play a part in how we view nutrition.  That is just life.  The popular product, newest fad, or celebrity endorsed diet pill always has consumers begging for more.

Truth.

Truth.

We are a “medicine and supplemental happy generation”.  However, the newest product most of the time leads to a large amount of money coming from your pocket.  What we sometimes fail to realize that we can find aids for common ailments through our diet.  However, we must look at concrete evidence in order to identify fact vs. fiction in the supplemental industry.

So where can you begin to add these nutritional power houses to our daily intake? Today, you can begin with the increasingly popular spice Turmeric. Question is…what is it?

Turmeric is used in cooking, it is most known in Indian curry dishes and is yellow in color.  It is also found in mustard, butter, and cheese as a coloring agent.  It is used in Chinese medicine for decreasing inflammation, fighting infection and some cancers, alleviating digestive issues, and treating skin diseases and wounds.

What does Turmeric look like?

What does Turmeric look like?

It is important to note that many of these studies are not tested on humans, so therefore, are conflicting.  However, as with anything, it is important to know the facts before going supplement crazy.  So, what have we found to be so popular in this yellow spice? The antioxidant, Curcumin, exists within turmeric.  Antioxidants help fight free radicals and reduce or prevent damage to these cells. In addition curcumin lowers levels of the two enzymes that cause inflammation. Curcumin is also shown to prevent blood clots from forming.

Ultimately, turmeric has been found to aid in the following:

  1. Indigestion: “The German Commission E, which determines which herbs can be safely prescribed in Germany, has approved turmeric for digestive problems. And one double-blind, placebo-controlled study found that turmeric reduced symptoms of bloating and gas in people suffering from indigestion.” Ultimately, the spice is worth a try if you are suffering from gastric distress.
  2. Ulcerative Colitis: “In one double-blind, placebo-controlled study, people whose ulcerative colitis was in remission took either curcumin or placebo, along with conventional medical treatment, for 6 months. Those who took curcumin had a significantly lower relapse rate than those who took placebo.”
  3. Heart Disease: Studies found that turmeric may prevent the buildup of plaque in the arteries, potentially reducing the risk of heart attack or stroke. In addition, it helps prevent the clumping of platelets and formation of blood clots.
  4. Cancer: Results and evidence are still in the making. “Evidence from test tube and animal studies suggests that curcumin may help prevent or treat several types of cancers, including prostate, breast, skin, and colon cancer.” More research is needed.
  5. Infections: “Test tube and animal studies suggest turmeric may kill bacteria and viruses, but researchers don’t know whether it would work in people.”  It could not hurt adding a little of the spice to your dish when you are hit with the worst sinus infection of the year!
  6. Neurodegenerative Conditions: It is said to act as a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, which therefore helps with diseases such as Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, Multiple Sclerosis, and other conditions.
Include Turmeric where you find it to fit!

Include Turmeric where you find it to fit!

So, now you may ask…how do I take it?

Ultimately, the safest way to take the vitamin is through food. So, load your cabinets with the spice!

If taken in a medicinal form, your health care provider should be consulted, for it can interact with Blood-thinning medications, or any heart burn medication, for turmeric increases blood clotting and stomach acid production. Turmeric also lowers blood sugar, which can cause episodes of hypoglycemia.

Now you know before you consume.  Always talk to your doctor before including supplements in your diet.

 

Michele Wroblewski, RDN

Caruso Physical Therapy and Nutrition, LLC

1278 Yardville Allentown Rd. Suite 3

Allentown, NJ 08501

www.carusoptrd.com

609-738-3143