May 2011 - Advanced Physical Medicine
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5 Fast and Healthy Recipes for Lunch at Work

When it comes to packing our lunch for work, we never seem to have enough time. Believe it or not though, it is possible to make a delicious and healthy lunch in less than ten minutes. Here are five fast and easy (and delicious) lunch recipes that will save you time, money and calories.

Chicken Caesar pita

 

 

  • Grilled chicken
  • Chopped Romaine lettuce
  • Low fat Caesar dressing
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Whole wheat pita

Think of this one as your traditional Caesar salad in a pita. First, cut up some grilled chicken. I suggest making grilled chicken for dinner the night before and using the leftovers for this recipe. Add chopped Romaine lettuce and mix in some low fat Caesar dressing. Grate Parmesan cheese over the mixture and pack into a whole wheat pita.

Mediterranean salad

 

 

  • Mozzarella
  • Cucumber
  • Tomato
  • Balsamic dressing
  • Italian bread (optional)

Here’s a refreshing salad without the lettuce. Cut up some fresh mozzarella. Add sliced cucumber and tomato. Drizzle over some balsamic dressing and season to taste (salt, pepper, garlic, etc.). If you like, have some Italian bread on the side to dip in the dressing.

Veggie sandwich

 

 

  • Multi grain Sandwich Thin
  • Avocado
  • Tomato
  • Cucumber
  • Roasted red pepper
  • Provolone cheese (optional)
  • Low fat chipotle mayo (optional)

This one is a perfect summertime sandwich that won’t leave you feeling stuffed. Slice avocado, tomato and cucumber. Layer sliced veggies and roasted red pepper onto a multi grain sandwich thin. Kick your sandwich up a notch with some provolone cheese and chipotle mayo.

Tuna wrap

 

Let's face it, sandwiches can become monotonous. So why not enjoy a wrap instead? All you have to do for this recipe is mix some tuna with chopped onions and celery. I like using StarKist Flavor Fresh Pouches because you don’t have to deal with opening a can and it provides the perfect serving size of tuna. Stir in some light mayo, add lettuce and pack into a whole wheat wrap. Tomato slices are a great addition to this wrap.

Fruit and nut salad

 

 

  • Baby greens
  • Cucumber
  • Apple slices
  • Crasins
  • Pecans
  • Goat cheese
  • Low fat raspberry vinaigrette

For those who like a sweet salad, this one is for you. Combine baby greens, cucumber, crasins and pecans. Add apple slices just before you eat your salad so they do not brown. Throw on a little goat cheese and top with low fat raspberry vinaigrette.

So there you have it, five quick and tasty lunches to make for work. Bon appetite!

Choosing the Best Sunscreen for Your Skin

When it comes to sunscreen, all are not created equally. That being said, how do you know which one is right for you? The following are a few key tips that will help you select the best sunscreen for your skin.

Know the skin you’re in

In order to choose the right sunscreen, you have to know your skin type. The American Association of Dermatology recognizes six different skin types ranging from those who always burn to those who do not burn at all. Here are the six skin types.

  1. Always burns easily, never tans, extremely sun-sensitive skin.
  2. Usually burns easily, tans minimally, very sun-sensitive skin.
  3. Sometimes burns, tans gradually to light brown, sun-sensitive skin.
  4. Burns minimally, always tans to moderate brown, minimally sun-sensitive skin.
  5. Rarely burns, tans well, sun-insensitive skin.
  6. Never burns, deeply pigmented, sun-insensitive skin.

Where are you?

Your geographic location heavily impacts your risk of sunburn. The closer you are to the equator, the more direct sunlight you come in contact with. The southern half of the United States receives 1.5 times the amount of sunlight than the northern half. Higher altitude levels also increase your chance of sunburn since there is less of earth’s atmosphere to act as a barrier against the sunlight.

Choose your protection

SPF, or sun protection factor, is used to measure the extent to which a particular sunscreen will defend your skin against UV rays. In general, a higher SPF will offer greater protection. It is important to remember that although SPF offers UVB protection, it does not necessarily guarantee protection against UVA rays. UVB rays are those responsible for skin redness and sunburn and affect the skin’s outermost layer. UVA rays cause wrinkles and aging and penetrate more deeply into the skin. For the best coverage against UVA rays, choose a sunscreen that contains helioplex or Mexoryl.

Good chemical, bad chemical

Along with SPF you should also consider the ingredients that make up the sunscreen. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) suggests using sunscreen that contains zinc, titanium dioxide or avobenzone/Mexoryl SX. A couple of EWG’s top recommendations are Blue Lizard and Earth’s Best. Ingredients to be avoided include Oxybenzone, Vitamin A (retinyl palmitate) and added insect repellent. These particular ingredients penetrate through the skin and are harmful to the body. Examples of these include Banana Boat Sport and Coppertone Water Babies. EWG also recommends cream based sunscreen as opposed to sprays or powders, which can be unsafe to breathe.

So next time you’re browsing the aisles in search of sunscreen, keep these tips in mind and you will definitely be covered!

 

Top 10 Personal Weight Loss Blogs

As the year is nearing its half-way point (time flies, doesn't it?), the resolution to lose weight has long been forgotten by many. To set you back on the way to weight loss, we have found 10 great weight loss blogs. These bloggers are all on a journey to achieving their ideal bodies:

1. http://blackgirlsguidetoweightloss.com/ Erika has lost an amazing 163 pounds and documents her journey to a svelte new shape on her blog.  Once over 300 pounds, she used yoga, running, healthier eating, low sugar intake, and minimizing stress to get towards her goal weight.  The blog is an entertaining, down to earth, realistic approach to getting rid of the weight and becoming a healthy, sexy version of yourself from a black girl’s perspective and the cultural situations that helped her to gain the weight and then to lose it.

2.http://findingradiance.com/ Lori is the 42 year old weight loss maven behind Finding Radiance.  She’s lost 115 pounds and counting by reducing fat and sugar intake, working out consistently at the gym, and tracking her foods.  She shares awesome recipes and tips for losing the weight and keeping it off, using techniques that have worked for her.

3. http://lynnsweigh.blogspot.com/ Lynn has dropped an astonishing 168 pounds, creating a healthy toned figure for herself after 30 years of gain and loss, diets and goal weights, back and forth eating.  With the right state of mind and determination, she changed her thinking about food and has lost an entire human being worth of weight.


4. http://mynewlife-manderz.blogspot.com/ Amanda started her journey at 276 lbs and whittled away over 100 pounds by tapping into her father’s love for running.  He competed in marathons all of her life and she felt that it was an activity that she too could make a goal to complete.  As of now, she has numerous races and marathons and changed her figure in the process.  Feeling fit and healthy, check out her blog for race updates.

5. http://bbubblyb.blogspot.com/ Dawn of Bubbly B has lost over 200 pounds from her figure!  She started at 378 and is currently in the 177 range with the help of Dr. Oz and being proactive in her life and food choices.  The blog is daily insight into her life, showing how she maintains her weight and is helping her husband to lose weight as well.  Very down to earth and friendly view into this woman’s life.

6. http://amerrylife.com/ Mary is a bright young 24 year old who weighed her most (266) around high school graduation, lost 55 pounds of it, gained it back and is now on the journey to lose and keep off 75 pounds for good.  She explores losing weight by making new active goals for herself such as biking and kayaking, and combating her emotional eating.  Her exciting life journey is chronologed through the blog, through which she even met her future husband who was a commenter on her posts.

7. http://skinnyemmie.com Feisty beautiful vivacious blogger Emmie blogs on the pains and triumphs of trying to get down from 455 pounds into a weight and shape that feels right and good on her (currently has lost 95 pounds).  She blogs and v-logs about her life, her ups and downs, the mentality behind what she goes through, and herself as a work in progress.

8. http://266-twosixtysix.blogspot.com/ Chronicles the weightloss journey of a 30 something year old woman and her struggles to stay on track and triumphs in losing over 100 pounds and keeping it off.  She’d had enough when she saw that the scale hit 266, the number that kickstarted her mission to get into shape.  Welcome to her journey: http://266-twosixtysix.blogspot.com/2010/08/anniversary-presentation.html

9. http://escapefromobesity.blogspot.com/ Once 278 pounds, this stay at home mom has lost 100 pounds and counting. She has a large following on her blog and for good reason, she’s entertaining and helpful to read!  Gain insight into her life and what steps she’s taken to achieve her massive weightloss.

10. http://msbitchcakes.blogspot.com/ Weightloss goes retro with this pin up beauty who has gone from 200 lbs down to 134 lbs.  By working out 6 times a week, using weight watchers, and staying focused on achieving her goal, she’s been able to reach her smallest weight yet and feels good.  Once she hit 35 she was sick and tired of being sick and tired, weary of being fat and decided to just do what needed to be done to feel good about her size.  Now she does!

Hopefully these lovely bloggers will inspire you to get back out there and achieve your goal weights!  Being healthy starts with the right state of mind and then the willpower and determination to follow through.

How to Improve Carpal Tunnel

With more careers involving sitting at a desk all day and typing, the chances of developing carpal tunnel syndrome increase.  This ailment is numbness, muscle damage, or weakness in the hands and wrist caused by pressure to the median nerve.  Typing, writing, sewing, painting, and playing musical instruments are just some activities that can cause carpal tunnel because of the repetitive motions in the wrist that can cause swelling and pressure to the nerve.  Want to find out how to prevent and improve this condition?  Read on for more:

1. Correct your posture!

This means sitting with your back against the back of your seat while typing, knees bent comfortably and feet flat on the ground.  This reduces strain on joints and muscles, ensures that you are positioned correctly without being tense, and minimizes chances of carpal tunnel or headaches.

2. Purchase the right equipment...

To minimize the stresses of typing, such as cushioned mouse pads, specialty keyboards, glove brace for your arm, etc.

3. Exercise and do workouts that will stimulate your wrists.

Dance about and make sure to use the wrist, perhaps do belly dancing that involves hand motions or repeat karaoke to “Stop! In the Name of Love” by Diana Ross and the Supremes with the original choreography.  Stretch a lot during the day and practice yoga moves that will engage the arms and wrists.

 

 

4. Take Pain Killers (but talk to your MD first).

Ibuprofen and other anti-inflammatory drugs that can help to reduce swelling and pressure.  If your pain is intense, injections can be given to the area by a doctor for relief as well as there are surgical procedures that can cut the ligament causing stress on the nerve. Talk to your doctor first, of course.

The key thing is to remember to break into the repetition of your normal activities and stretch, move, flick that wrist so that blood flow and pressure is correct.  Maintaining a full range of motion is important, so take out 5 minute breaks for every hour that you are working and do a couple of chair exercises so that you can utilize the full range of motions that your body was made to handle.

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