National Stress Awareness Month

STRESS versus RELAX directional signs

In 1992, the month of April was designated as Stress Awareness Month.  During this time, health professionals join together to increase the public’s awareness about what causes stress and what can help cure the growing stress epidemic.

Jamaica Hospital Medical Center is participating by reaching out to our social media community and sharing some helpful techniques that can assist you in managing your daily stress, such as:

  • Meditation – is helpful to the brain’s neural pathways, making you more resilient to stress
  • Breathing Deeply – triggers our parasympathetic nervous system, neutralizes stress and elicits a calming feeling
  • Exercise – all forms of exercise can ease depression and anxiety by helping the brain releasing feel-good chemicals giving your body a chance to practice dealing with stress
  • Eating Healthy – choosing a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, and fiber may reduce the chance that stress can boost the body’s natural defense system

Prolonged, excesive periods of stress is unhealthy for any individual. A change of mindset can bring about a healthier lifestyle.  That positive change can help you manage stress and bring far-reaching improvement to your health and well being.

For more information and to find out ways you can make a difference visit – http://stressawarenessmonth.com/

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Small Changes = Big Benefits

Seniors exercising with dumbbells in a health club

When looking for a routine that can bring wellness to your entire being, you don’t have to climb a mountain in Tibet or strip away all food you love.  Experts say that the best way to bring a wellness routine into your life is through a series of small changes that will gradually make a difference.

Changes such as:

  • Meditation – Take a moment in the morning to meditate.  It will set the tone for the day and clear your head to prepare for what the day may bring.
  • Music – Play calming music.  The body’s internal rhythms sync with the rhythms of music. By focusing on the music and its melody, you will start to feel your breathing and heart rate begin to slow down, bringing you to a much calmer place
  • Plan a trip – According to research, happiness spikes when planning a trip.
  • Put down your smartphone – When the impulse to pick up your phone comes, and you resist it, you may feel a wave of anxiety.  Don’t panic! Breath through the anxiety and you will see that there is calm that will follow.
  • Breathe deeply – Sit in a comfortable place, breathe naturally and settle your attention on your breath.  With each inhale and exhale, mentally repeat the words “in” and “out.”  Even if you mind wanders, don’t get distracted; just bring your attention back to your breathing.
  • Don’t check your email when you first wake up – When you wake, sit silently and allow your mind to wander. Take 10 minutes to just center yourself before you start your day.
  • Walk – Use part of your lunch break to take a walk.  This activity will aid with digestion, keep you active and relieve stress.

No one likes change and it rarely comes easy.  That’s why slowly incorporating small steps toward your goals overtime can lead to huge changes in the long run.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

National Senior Health and Fitness Day

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May 25, 2016, is National Senior Health and Fitness Day.  This observance is designed to shed light on the importance of the health and fitness of older adults.

Exercise is essential to improving health at any age, and seniors are not an exception.  A low-impact exercise routine can benefit your health by stretching and strengthening muscles, reducing stress and can even help to lower high blood pressure.

Staying fit doesn’t have to require a gym.  You can work out, at your own pace, with an instructor in class, on a home gym machine such as a treadmill, or utilize the great outdoors by taking a walk.

The four categories of Low –impact exercises are:

  1. Endurance –walking, swimming, or cycling.
  2. Strength –light weight training
  3. Flexibility –  Yoga
  4. Balance –Ti Chi

No matter what workout routine you choose, adding some gentle stretches will improve flexibility and range of motion.

After speaking with your physician and identifying what type of exercise is safe for you, an appropriate exercise regimen can lessen your visits to the doctor, lower your chance of being hospitalized and reduce the need for medications for a variety of illnesses.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Motivation Monday

Have you been getting fit for spring but want to add excitement to your exercise? Try out this custom exercise chart created just for you! Using the letters of the alphabet to spell your name you will have a fun workout to keep you fit. Please be advised that these workouts are only suggestions and can be catered to better suit your physical ability due to age, weight and health.

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

Y

Z

50 Jumping Jacks

20 Crunches

30 Squats

15 Push-Ups

1 Minute Wall-Sit

15 Burpees

20 Arm Circles

20 Squats

50 Crunches

15 Sit-Ups

10 Push-Ups

2 Minute Wall-Sit

10 Burpees

20 Burpees

40 Jumping Jacks

15 Arm Circles

30 Crunches

15 Push-Ups

30 Burpees

25 Squats

30 Arm Circles

3 Minute Wall-Sit

60 Jumping Jacks

20 Push-Ups

30 Crunches

1 Minute Plank

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

#MotivatedMonday: Binge Watching and Exercise

 

ThinkstockPhotos-103801447With the weather getting colder and the days getting shorter, snuggling up on the bed or couch and binge watching your favorite TV shows or movies is becoming more appealing.  However, long hours of inactivity can increase health risks for obesity, heart disease, and even osteoporosis.

 

Here are a few tips to stay active while marathoning:

  1. Jumping Jacks – try doing multiple sets during breaks or even while you watch.
  2. Side lying leg lifts — While lying on your side, stack your legs and bring them out to a 45 degree angle in front of your body. Flex your feet and lift your top leg slightly higher than you hip and then down. Try doing multiple sets of 20 until you reach 100.
  3. Sit ups – Lay on the floor and do multiple sets of sit ups until you reach 100.
  4. Chair poses – For all over toning stand with your feet together and big toes touching. Inhale and lift your arms up until they are perpendicular to the floor. Exhale and sit your hips back down like you’re about to sit in an invisible chair. Bring your thighs as close to parallel with the floor as you can. Hold for 8 to 10 breaths.
  5. Upper back stretches — Improve your posture and ease tension while sitting on your sofa. Sit with a straight back, stomach held in and feet flat on the floor. Grab your left wrist with your right hand and pull your left wrist to the right until you feel a nice stretch. Keep the stretch for 30 seconds then repeat using the opposite hand.
  6. Free weights — invest in some free weights and vary some arm exercises like curls or the tricep push. Try low weight and high reps for toning.

No matter how long you binge watch, or how frequently, be sure that you always take the time to exercise for a healthier, happier you.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

The Benefits of Tai Chi

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Tai chi is an ancient Chinese martial art that has been practiced for thousands of years. This low-impact, mind-body exercise combines breath control, meditation, and movements that stretch and strengthen muscles.

The practice of tai chi involves meditation and fluid movements in conjunction with deep breathing that focuses on the area just below your navel.  Tai chi theory believes that this area is the body’s storage point for energy, or chi. Tai chi can be gentle or vigorous, depending on the style you practice (there are several different types).Tai chi can be done either in class or at home once you learn the postures, but group sessions are usually preferred.

Some health benefits of tai chi include:

. Improved balance and coordination

. More flexibility

. Increased muscle strength

. Better stamina

Tai chi also helps relieve stress and can even ease chronic lower back pain, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, and tension headaches.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

#MondayMotivation — 10 Minute Heart Health Workout

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According to the American Heart Association, 2200 Americans die of heart disease every single day. Help your heart get a boost and prevent becoming a part of this growing statistic- Check out this quick 10 minute workout for a healthy heart.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Is Pilates Right For You?

The Pilates Method, a physical fitness system developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 1930s, is a practice intended to strengthen the physical body, as well as the mind. The goal of Pilates is to help the participant realize the connection between how you move and carry yourself throughout the day and any pain or discomfort that you might experience as a result of sitting, walking or moving in a way that might aggravate these conditions.

Pilates believed that stretching, strengthening and body alignment are all important in maintaining good physical and mental health.

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Pilates can be done on a mat or using an “apparatus,” a stretching machine usually found in a Pilates studio.  Some of the main principles and aims of Pilates exercise include:

. Concentrating and focusing on what you’re doing all the time and aiming for smooth movements.

. Increased control of muscle movement teaches you to be in control of your body.

. Increased core strengthening, called “centering,” of the abdomen, lower and upper back, hips, buttocks, and inner thighs strengthens the rest of the body.

. Better flow and efficiency of movement helps to build strength and stamina.

. Increasing the intake of oxygen through proper breathing can increase circulation to every part of the body.

Pilates is generally recommended for people who have chronic lower back pain, but might not be a cure all for everyone. Check with your doctor before embarking on this or any new exercise plan.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Jumping for Joy!

 

Looking for an inexpensive way for you and your family to stay fit this summer? Try jumping rope! For as little as $12 and 10 minutes, you can get a high intensity cardio workout. And best of all, it’s portable.

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Jumping rope can help everyone, of any age, achieve a range of fitness goals, including cardiovascular benefits, It can also aid in building bone-mineral density, improving coordination, and increasing muscle endurance, as well as toning and shaping. According to the Compendium of Physical Studies, jumping rope for 10 minutes can burn as many calories as jogging at an eight-minute-per-mile pace.

Jump rope basics:

. To find a rope length that fits you, place one foot in the center of the rope and lift the handles — they shouldn’t go past your armpits.

. Keep elbows close to sides as you turn the rope. The movement comes from the wrists and forearms, not the shoulders.

. Jump only 1 to 1 ½ inches off the floor, giving the rope just enough space to slip under feet — only the balls of feet should touch the floor. Stay high on your toes and use your body’s natural shock absorbers.

Before starting a jump rope workout, check with your doctor. Shoes and jumping surface are important as to how jumping will impact your body. Rope-jumping is considered lower impact than jogging or running if done properly.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.