Posts Tagged ‘Take Control Naturally’

Can you still do all the physical activities you want to do?  Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) are the key to enjoying your life, especially as we grow older.  At ISCD last month we learned some tricks to maintain our ability to do everything we need to do for a full life.

As we age, we lose muscle mass (Sarcopenia).  Loss of muscle mass leads to even faster loss of muscle strength (Dynopenia).  Loss of muscle strength is a strong predictor of Fall Risk and Fracture Risk.  Bummer!

Get your butt off the couch!  You should be able to stand, then sit, then stand again for 5 cycles in 15 seconds.  If you cannot, you are in danger of losing your ability to live independently.  Loss of the knee extension strength needed to stand, even once, predicts mortality.  Huge bummer!

There is no medication for loss of strength.  We do have natural activities: Balance exercises (standing on one leg); Aerobic exercises (walking for distance, not speed); Progressive strength exercises (sit to stand to partial squat to stand….).  Enough extra Vitamin D3 to get your level above 40ng/ml helps your muscles.  And you MUST get enough Protein in your diet.

Take Control Naturally.  Exercises, Protein, Vitamin D3, Calcium, and Multiple Vitamins & Minerals.  Remain strong and independent.

Jay Ginther, MD

 

Spring – The Most Dangerous Season

March 22, 2015 @ 9:12 pm
posted by Dr Ginther

Spring is here.  The birds are singing.  Soon flowers will be blooming.  All the world is coming to life.  And more hips will be breaking.

32% of all hip fractures (nearly 1/3) occur in Spring!  Nearly 1/3 of hip fractures over 70 are in men.  And nearly 1/3 of those men die within months from medical complications initiated by their hip fractures.  Dangerous!

What can we do to avoid those fractures?  Decrease Fracture Risk!  How?  Do the following:

It is March;  this is Iowa;  almost 90% of persons not on major doses of Vitamin D3 are low.  (By late September that falls to less than 60% that are low.)  Remember that if you have a low Vitamin D level, you cannot absorb enough of the Calcium you consume in food and/or supplements.  Take extra Vitamin D3.

Remember that while Calcium Citrate is always absorbable, Calcium Carbonate often is not.  Remember that you need enough Magnesium to absorb Calcium.  A Senior Multiple Vitamins & Minerals has enough Magnesium for those of us over age 50, and lots of other good stuff too.

Protein is a big deal, especially over age 60, when our protein needs actually increase.  80% of bone and 90% of muscle are protein.  Regular exercises, including Balance Exercises, are necessary to Prevent Falls.

If you do not already know the quality (as well as density) of your bones, get a Complete Bone Health Evaluation.  Identify your opportunities for improvement.

Take Control Naturally with proper nutrition and exercises.

Jay Ginther, MD

Fall Prevention = Fracture Prevention

March 7, 2015 @ 10:36 pm
posted by Dr Ginther

Falls are the immediate cause of most “wrist”, shoulder and ankle fractures, and of many Hip fractures.  Two or more falls in a year indicate a need for more than basic balance and strength training.  You need to analyze why you fell.  Then work to avoid repetition.  Formal Physical Therapy, teaching exercises to do at home, is best.

Major Fall Risk Factors:  loose rugs and minor step-ups into a room; the scuffing gait needed for slippers, sandals or clogs; poor vision and bifocals; bending to pick something off the floor without hanging on to support; not using chair arms; slow gait; and not using a cane or walker on uneven surfaces (out-of-doors).  If you have any of these, work to eliminate them.

Walking for exercise does NOT reduce falls.  Even walking over a mile daily.  Balance and strength training DO reduce falls.  The simplest to do at home is to stand on one leg.  The goal is 30 seconds.  Many of us need to hang on to something solid at first and gradually work up to “no hands”.  PT will teach additional exercises as you improve.

Lifestyle Integrative Functional Exercises!  Look at all daily activites, then modify your lifestyle to avoid Fall Opportunities.  Avoiding Falls is just as important as taking osteoporosis medications for Avoiding Fractures.

Take Control Naturally.  Avoid Falls.  Avoid Fractures.

Jay Ginther, MD

Tai Chi at Sunrise

February 12, 2015 @ 10:02 pm
posted by Dr Ginther

My wife and I visited the tropics during January.  We did Tai Chi every morning while watching the sun rise.  A Blue Zone experience.  Worth getting up early!

Tai Chi is mostly about balance and co-ordination.  (Difficult to appreciate if you watched our group of rookies.)  Improving balance, co-ordination, and core muscle strength helps to prevent falls as well as strengthen muscles and bones.  We found it interesting and invigorating and plan to continue now that we are back in Iowa snow country.

Tai Chi is ideal for older individuals, like myself.  Yoga is easier for those younger and more flexible.  Ballroom dancing is a favorite of those who can do it.  Recreational sports work too, as long as you are careful and avoid collisions.  All have the advantage that they can be group activites.

Exercise is a necessity for optimal bone health.  Balance training and fall prevention are very helpful for fracture prrevention.  Along with enough Calcium, Vitamin D3, Protein, and Multiple Vitamins & Minerals, this may be all you need to prevent osteoporosis and fractures.

Take Control Naturally.

Jay Ginther, MD