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Dr. Corinne: Stress Relievers for the Whole Family
Dr. Corinne Weaver : Jul 24, 2020 Dr. Corinne Weaver
Make it a habit to incorporate physical activity into your day, every day and see how your stress levels change in your body...
As any chiropractor will tell you, we hold stress in our bodies. Some hold it in their neck/shoulder area and some hold it in their lower back. In my latest No More Meds Podcast we spoke on stress and how it affects our immune system. How we handle stress is so important for our health. (Image: Pixabay)
Often we attempt to push unwanted feelings—such as irritation, fear, sadness—out of our awareness. We associate such feelings with hopelessness or powerlessness. So, in an effort to blot them, we forcefully engage in denial or repression. We drive them out of our consciousness and deny our emotions. Instead of acknowledging, processing, and releasing these unwanted feelings, we bottle them up. This can result in mysterious aches and pains in hot spots like the shoulders, lower back, neck, and hips.
How are your shoulders, neck, back, and hips feeling right now?
Did you know exercise is the best stress reducer. Keeping your body moving is just as crucial to a healthy lifestyle as healthy eating. Just as you should with food choices, be sure to apply variety, balance, and moderation to your exercise routine. For variety, choose different activities to move different muscle groups. Find balance in your physical activity plan based on benefits. For moderation, move enough to keep fit without overdoing it. Don't forget to encourage your kids to seek out activities based on their interests, and be creative. Get the whole family involved.
Here are the physical activity guidelines from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services:
Preschool-Aged Children (ages 3 through 5 years)
Preschool-aged children should be physically active throughout the day to enhance growth and development.
Children and Adolescents (ages 6 through 17 years)
Children and adolescents should do 60 minutes or more of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity daily.
It is important to provide children and adolescents opportunities and encouragement to participate in physical activities that are appropriate for their age, that are enjoyable, and that offer variety.
Guidelines from the US Department of Health & Human Services recommend the following for adults:
Adults should move more and sit less throughout the day.
For substantial health benefits, adults should do at least 150 to 300 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes to 5 hours) a week of moderate-intensity, or 75 to 150 minutes (1 hour and 15 minutes to 2 hours and 30 minutes) a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, or an equivalent combination of moderate- and vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise.
Adults should also do muscle-strengthening activities of moderate or higher intensity, that involve all major muscle groups on two or more days a week.
There are three primary types of physical activity, and all three are necessary for optimal health.
Aerobic activity makes your heart and lungs strong, boosts your mood, and reduces the risk of certain diseases, including diabetes. Aerobic exercise gets your heart pumping and makes you breathe harder. It usually gets your whole body moving. Examples include dancing, biking, and fast-paced walking. This type of activity should be daily.
Muscle-strengthening activities make muscles do more work than usual, which makes them stronger. Strong muscles make it easier to do daily tasks, prevent injuries, and burn more calories to help maintain weight. Examples include doing push-ups, squatting, or climbing trees. This type of activity should be done at least three days each week.
Bone-strengthening activities push on your bones to make them grow and get strong and help protect against osteoporosis. Examples include skipping, jumping rope, running, and gymnastics. This type of activity should be done at least three days each week.
School and community sports teams are a great way to get kids active. However, this usually leaves parents on the sidelines. Additionally, not all children and teens enjoy organized sports.
To stay fit as a family, plan unstructured activity into your family time. Freeze tag, playground fun, backyard sports, and impromptu dancing are just a few examples.
You can turn any mundane chore into a game of "who can finish their task first."
Clearing the yard of leaves or shoveling the driveway is a great way to spend time outdoors while being active. Make it into a game by adding some competition to the mix!
This is a great way to get the kids excited about moving, and they won't even realize they're getting physical activity. You can do it as a family, or you can get other families in the neighborhood involved too. Make a list of items to find or collect, pair up, and see who can collect all the items the fastest.
Going to the park, beach, or another outdoor area for physical activity is a great way for the family to reconnect with nature. This is a great opportunity to explore the surroundings and learn something new. You may even want to spend some time beforehand researching information about the local trees, flowers, or birds to add an educational aspect to your trip outdoors.
Turn Friday nights into a weekly game night or an ongoing dance party. Encourage the kids to invite friends over, take turns playing their favorite songs, and get moving. If dancing isn't everyone's cup of tea, take turns as a family deciding which activity to do each week.
Did you know that according to a report from Active Healthy Kids, lifestyle patterns of kids under the age of six predict their level of health and obesity later in life?
Parent-baby exercises are a great way for parents to stay fit while modeling healthy behavior for the little ones.
Here are a few moves you can try:
Lay on the floor and hold your baby with both hands.
Begin with baby on your stomach.
Push your arms up quickly but controlled—lifting your baby into the air.
Bring your arms down slowly until baby is close to your stomach, but not touching.
Continue this exercise for 10-15 reps.
Push Up Peek-a-Boo
Get into a push-up position with your baby underneath you, so you can see each other.
If this position is too difficult, start on your knees.
Cover your eyes with one hand.
Lower your top half with your other arm.
Surprise your baby with a Peekaboo, revealing your eyes!
Then raise yourself back up.
Do 10 reps, alternating hands.
Baby Weight Squats
Hold your baby in your arms, hands, or in a wrap.
Stand with your chest held up and out.
With your legs shoulder-width apart, push your glutes back and bend your knees.
Don't squat too low, or it will cause excessive pressure on your knees.
Kids this age love games, and they love to mimic mom and dad or their older siblings. Here are some fun activities to try:
Play follow the leader
Play Simon says
Draw a maze on the driveway
Imitate different animal walks
Make an obstacle course
Wheelbarrow or crab walk races
Be sure to add music to activities for even more fun!
This age group exhibits a little more coordination and typically have longer attention spans.
Get them excited about physical activities by planning adventures: weekend bike rides, backyard frisbee, swimming, or roller-blade hockey. You know your child's skill level, plan accordingly.
Teens may be the toughest age group to get excited about family time. Make sure to incorporate their interests into family physical activity. While the goal is typically to put down the technology, this may be a good time to incorporate high-tech tools like Wii Fit to help integrate your child's interests with a more active lifestyle. My son and I love playing tennis together.
It's important to round out a healthy lifestyle with healthy eating. Spending time in the kitchen is another great way to instill healthy habits and enjoy time together. From helping to stir ingredients to create new recipes, there are things all age groups can help with. Try looking for healthy recipes together then creating them. Older kids can be in charge of one dinner a week. When they get to pick the recipe, they'll be more excited to get in the kitchen and even eat healthier.
Energy bites are a simple recipe the whole family will enjoy making and eating! All you need is:
1 cup old-fashioned oats
2/3 cup toasted shredded coconut
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup ground flaxseed
1/2 cup unsweetened chocolate chips
1/3 cup honey
1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Simply stir ingredients together, scoop into one-inch balls, chill, and enjoy!
Here are a few more tips to get you moving as a family:
Balance sedentary time, such as reading, with an activity that requires movement such as tag, jumping rope, or hopscotch.
Set aside time each day for active play together, perhaps tossing a ball, having a dance party, taking a walk after a family meal, or doing some deep breathing exercises before bed.
Designate an indoor and an outdoor area where your child can freely get out their wiggles.
Encourage children to try a new physical activity.
Offer toys that encourage physical activity such as balls, kites, hula hoops, Frisbees, and jump ropes.
It can be hard to find time for fitness in our busy schedules. However, fitness should be a priority as part of living a healthy lifestyle. If you make fitness a priority, your kids are more likely to do the same.
Make it a habit to incorporate physical activity into your day, every day and see how your stress levels change in your body. I love helping families come together and improve their health. If you have any other health and wellness concerns you'd like to address, let me know! I love working one-on-one to help people live healthier lifestyles. My mission is to help you get healthier without needing more medications. If you or someone you know needs help, make sure you reach out because I am available for a telehealth call. Let's continue to share Hope in this world and get on our knees to pray to our Heavenly Father asking Him to strengthen us daily realizing its impossible to live the Christian life without Him. Subscribe for free to Breaking Christian News here
Dr. Corinne Weaver is a compassionate upper cervical chiropractor, educator, motivational speaker, mother of three, and internationally bestselling author. In 2004, she founded the Upper Cervical Wellness Center in Indian Trail, North Carolina. Over the last 13 years, she has helped thousands of clients restore their brain to-body function. When she was 10 years old, she lost her own health as the result of a bike accident that led to having asthma and allergy issues that she thought she would always have to endure. Then, after her first upper cervical adjustment at age 21, her health began to improve thanks to upper cervical care and natural herbal remedies. This enabled her to create a drug-free wellness lifestyle for herself and her family, and she also enthusiastically discovered her calling to help children heal naturally.
Dr. Weaver was named one of Charlotte Magazine's "Top Doctors" in 2016 and is now a number-one internationally bestselling author to two books: Learning How to Breathe and No More Meds.
Upper Cervical Wellness Center is known for finding the root cause of health concerns through lifestyle changes, diagnostic testing, nutraceutical supplementation, and correction of subluxation (as opposed to just medicating the symptoms). The practice offers cutting-edge technological care at its state-of-the-art facility, including laser-aligned upper cervical X-rays, bioimpedance analysis (measures body composition), digital thermography (locates thermal abnormalities characterized by skin inflammation), and complete nutritional blood analysis, which is focused on disease prevention.
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