Monday, May 27, 2013

History of Massage Therapy

Have you enjoyed the therapeutic benefits of a professional massage lately? Are you considering regular massage as part of maintaining a healthy and fit lifestyle? Let's take a look at the history of massage to better appreciate the valuable resource that a certified professional massage therapist can bring to your team of healthcare providers.

Word Origin

In our current vocabulary, massage is the manual manipulation of the soft tissues of the body, performed using the hands of the therapist, in order to achieve therapeutic benefits. The Greek root of the word is masso or massein, meaning to touch, to handle, to knead, or to squeeze. The Latin root massa has the same meaning as the Greek. The Arabic mass'h and the sanskrit makeh mean to press softly.


Modern Times

Modern Massage is the continuation of ancient techniques and theories combined with modern day knowledge of the complete body systems. There is a large body of Western research that now supports the Ancient practices of the Eastern civilizations. The most common form of massage is the Swedish massage, which is a massage designed to boost the circulatory and immune system. It is very effective in increasing the flow of fluids throughout the body and removing toxic cellular waste while delivering fresh oxygenated blood to the muscles.

The documented benefits of massage are widespread and enjoyed across the globe. With the modern emphasis that is now being placed on preventative and alternative therapies, the future use of massage to increase health and maintain a vigorous lifestyle will only grow in popularity.

Ancient Times

Massage is one of the earliest and most natural means of relieving pain and discomfort. When a person has any injury or pain, the first instinctive impulse is to gently touch or rub the affected area. There are many artifacts throughout ancient civilizations that indicate that prehistoric men and women used massage as well as herbs and oils in the regular care of their bodies. Massage, as taught anciently by healers or physicians, was one of the most prominent forms of healthcare in the ancient world.

The Chinese and Egyptians both practiced massage as early as 3,000 B.C. The Chinese focused on treating points of energy with acupuntcure (with the use of needles) and acupressure (finger pressure instead of needles). The Egyptians are thought to have created reflexology around 2500 B.C.

The practice of massage spread from China to Japan and India, and later on to the Greeks of Europe. The Greek physician Asclepius, who was later worshipped as the god of medicine, combined exercise and massage to form the art of gymnastics. Hippocrates, a descendant of Asclepius, wrote about the benefits of massage in medical practices. His famous code of ethics, the Hippocratic Oath, is still in use by physicians today. Hippocrates taught that all physicians should be trained in the use of massage as a method of healing.

The Romans learned of the benefits of massage from the Greeks and, combined with their public bath houses, made massage available to the rich and poor alike. Roman general Julius Caesar is believed to have had a daily massage to treat neuralgia and epileptic attacks.

There is not much recorded of massage during the Dark Ages. With the invention of the printing press in the Renaissance, there was a resurgence of interest in massage as people once again placed importance on physical health and appearance. Medical professionals could now share their techniques and stories of success with professionals around the world.

check out my blog http://meridianmassagecenter.blogspot.com to read success stories and testimonials from those who already enjoy a regular professional massage.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Your wedding diet – the healthy way

Many brides feel a lot of pressure to look their best on the big day. Of course, it's important to feel healthy and comfortable. However, it's not a good idea to go for extreme diets or to try and lose large amounts of weight in the run-up to the big day. As well as looking slim, it's important to make sure you look healthy, and that can only be achieved by eating a balanced diet that meets your nutritional needs.

Maybe your friends had to introduce you to all the singles Birmingham was home to before you husband-to-be him n online, or perhaps you were sent to Hong Kong for work and met him wake boarding. However you met your groom, why not blow him away by looking your healthy best on the big day with these five tips?

1) Cut out fatty and sugary snacks

A common dieting slip-up is to eat healthy meals but then weaken and snack on sugary or fatty foods. If you're at work or on the go and you feel hungry, sometimes a chocolate bar or packet of crisps can seem like the only option. However, these snacks are full of calories and won't keep you full for long. Make sure you keep some healthy options with you such as nuts and fruit for guilt-free snacking.

2) Eat slow-release carbs

Processed carbohydrates such as white bread and pasta fill you up but then leave you feeling hungry again a short time after. That means you're tempted to snack. Replace the refined, white versions of

these foods with wholegrain options for slow-release energy that will keep you feeling fuller for longer.

3) Cook well

It's easier than you think to create tasty, low-calorie versions of your favourite meals. Reduce the amount of fat in your cooking if you can. For example, make hand-cut oven chips rather than the deep-fried version. Add herbs and spices as flavouring, rather than fat. This will make your food taste great as well as helping you diet.

4) Limit alcohol

Alcohol is full of calories that give you no nutritional value at all. If you can limit your alcohol intake in the months before your wedding, then you'll lose weight more easily. You will also find that you look and feel better, with better skin and a healthy glow.

5) Exercise

Exercise can help you burn off excess calories, and it will also help improve your metabolic rate. The more lean muscle you have in your body, the more calories you'll burn. Exercise also helps you tone up, so you’ll look your absolute best when the time comes to put that special dress on.

These healthy-eating tips should leave you feeling healthy and looking trim in time for the big day. For bridesmaids looking for love, why not join the bride to be in following these dieting tips. You could blow your date away by looking exceptional in that strapless number – just try not to steal the bride’s limelight!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Heart Attack Warning Signs

Many times death from a heart attack can be prevented. Their symptoms usually do not happen quickly, but come on slowly, beginning with a small amount of pain and discomfort. For this reason, everyone needs to know the symptoms of a heart attack and go straight to the emergency room with the first appearance of any heart attack warning signs. Doing this could very possibly save your life or the life of someone you love.

The heart pumps 24 hours a day sending blood rich in nutrients to your body through its coronary arteries. If these arteries get blocked because of too much plaque or other fatty substances that have built up over the years, it can cause a heart attack. What usually happens is a piece of the plaque breaks off and blocks an artery and prohibits it from sending the needed blood to the heart. It the heart doesn't get enough blood for a period of time, the heart muscle will begin to die, and the individual will have a heart attack.

There are times when people have a sudden and intense heart attack where they know, as well as everyone around them, exactly what is going on. They are rushed immediately to the hospital and hopefully get there in time for the emergency room staff to stop the attack. But most of the time, there are other more subtle warning signs that give you plenty of time to react to the situation. Below is a short but important list you need to make a mental note of.

1 - Discomfort in the Chest - If someone for no apparent reason begins having pain, feelings of pressure, or a squeezing sensation in the center of the chest, it is time to go to the emergency room, especially if it has lasted more than a couple of minutes. At times the pain will go away, and come back. It does not matter. They need to go to the emergency room and have the doctor give them a thorough exam. Emergency room personnel know exactly what to look for and are trained to react swiftly. Yes, there may be a little embarrassment if it turns out to be heartburn or an anxiety attack, but it is better to be safe than sorry. If it had been a heart attack, a quick response could have saved someone's life. If you or anyone in your presence is having these symptoms, try to convince them the importance of a quick response to any of these heart attack warning signs.

2 - Shortness of Breath - Although discomfort and pain in the chest is one of the classic warning signs of an attack, at times there are individuals who have a sudden shortness of breath as well. This needs to be watched very closely and if it last for more than a few minutes, there should also be a quick trip the emergency room.

3 - Pain in upper body - At times one of the heart attack warning signs is pain in the jaw, neck, back, or one or both arms. Once again, if this happens suddenly and for no apparent reason, and last more than a few minutes, be safe and make a visit to the emergency room.

4 - Other Symptoms - Although men can have them too, women very often have symptoms of dizziness, nausea and a sudden breaking out in a cold sweat. This should be watched very closely if it occurs.

People who have never had a heart problem are never sure what to do, or if their symptoms are truly heart attack symptoms. Just remember delaying a call 911 or heading straight to the hospital could be the difference in a complete recover, or death. Emergency room personnel have drugs to open clots, and other treatments to open your arteries that can stop a heart attack. For the best results of a complete recovery, you need to reach the hospital for the treatments as soon after the heart attack warning signs begin as possible.

People of any age can have a heart attack, though it is rare in the younger population. The risks for heart trouble climbs after age 45 in men and 55 in women. The average heart attack age in men is 66 and in women 70. If you are in this age range you are at a higher risk for a heart attack, especially if you have a life style that includes smoking, or you are excessively overweight. It may be a good idea to have a game plan in case of a heart attack. Having an available list of what to do would be a good idea. Calling 911, or someone to take you to the hospital should be at the top of that list.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Post Gastric Bypass Diet

When you leave the hospital after your gastric bypass, your doctor will give you a post gastric bypass diet. This diet was designed by specialists in the field of nutrition specifically for your particular type of surgery. It is very important this diet is carefully adhered to. Your body has been in a trauma and needs time to heal. It is very inadvisable not to rush it regardless of how much you feel you have improved.

When you had your gastric bypass surgery, your stomach was reduced to the size of an egg. You will not be able to eat the same amount of food and parts of your stomach and intestines that helped to digest and take the nutrients into your body are now no longer being used. This means you will lose weight because of less calorie intake and because your body will no longer be able to absorb the nutrients it was once able to absorb.

This will give you your hoped for long range results if you follow your physicians instructions. This is a good thing. Your lost of weight will take with it many of the problems your body was more than likely having because of the added pressure on the heart and other organs. However, since your body will not be absorbing as many of the needed vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that it needs to keep functioning properly, you will have to make some very important lifestyle changes, the main ones being diet and exercise. In this article, we will be looking more at the aspects of your diet. The diet I will be discussing is suggested by many bypass surgeons, however, if your doctor suggests a diet that varies somewhat from this one, always listen to your attending physician.

For almost a month your post gastric bypass diet will consist of nothing but liquids and semi liquids. The first day after your operation, your nurse will only bring you clear liquid beverages, such as water, fruit juice or some clear diet sodas. If after 24 hours you seem to be having no problems with the clear liquids, you will then be allowed to start having some semi-liquids added to your diet. You should drink them very slowly and if you feel you are having any problems, be sure and inform your nurse or doctor. Your semi-liquid diet will continue for around three weeks after you leave the hospital. With no complications you should be able to leave the hospital in 2 -5 days, according to the surgery you had. Usually you can return home in 2-3 days after laparoscopic surgery, whereas an open gastric bypass will usually be a 4-5 day stay.

Your semi-liquid diet will consist mainly of foods that have a consistency of a thick soup. All fruits and vegetables will have to be thoroughly blended into the required semi-liquid state, and you will need to drink a sufficient amount of low calorie liquids to prevent dehydration. You should always drink slowly to help prevent possible vomiting or reflux. Your stomach is much smaller now and needs to adjust to its new size. As stated earlier it is very important to stay on course with your post gastric bypass diet until your doctor tells you different.

Since your stomach is not large enough to supply your bodies needed nutrients, you diet will need to be supplemented with vitamins and proteins for the rest of your life. For the present you will need to add dry milk powder to almost all of your foods and beverages, and perhaps drink supplements like Carnation instant breakfast for protein. Of course always use non fat products and skim milk. As soon as you are able, your doctor will prescribe some strong multivitamins with added minerals. You will be taking these for the rest of your life to supply your body with the vitamins and minerals that it can no longer supply for itself.

Once your physician thinks you are ready, you can begin your solid food diet. This will usually be 3-4 weeks after your surgery. You will then be able to eat many of the foods you enjoyed before, but many of them will be off limits if you want your long term goals to prevail. This article has spoken more about your diet in general. Your physician will give you written instructions about the diet you need to follow, along with an exact list of what foods are best for you and what foods you should avoid. You do need to remember that diet alone will not achieve your goals. There will other lifestyle changes you will need to make as well.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Weight Loss Surgery Options

There are a number of weight loss surgery options available on today's medical market and anyone thinking about this serious surgery should be familiar with as many as possible before making a decision.

The basic types of weight loss surgery options are restrictive and malabsorptive. Here is the difference between the two.

Restrictive Weight Loss Surgery is accomplished by closing off a large part of the stomach so that only a small amount of food can be eaten at a time greatly reducing the calorie and fat intake.

Malabsorptive Surgery is done by bypassing portions of the intestines. Since the nutrients do not pass through much of the area where they are absorbed the patient loses weight because these nutrients do not enter the body.

One of the most popular of the weight loss surgery options is Gastric Bypass Surgery which combines both restrictive and malabsorptive techniques. In this surgery a small pouch is made in the stomach and then a part of the small intestine is used to bypass much of the large intestine. This means the patient must not only consume smaller amounts of food, but that much of the food that is consumed will not be absorbed by the body.

There are two basic types of bypass gastric surgery. One is open surgery and the other is laparoscopic surgery. In open surgery the surgery is performed through one large incision, whereas in laparoscopic surgery it is done through a number of small incisions using a camera.

Since laparoscopic surgery has very small incisions it has a much faster recovery time and less complications than open surgery. For this reason open surgery is only done on people who can not qualify for laparoscopic surgery because of medical complications.

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery is one of the most performed weight loss surgery options. It is popular because it has such a good track record when it comes to less complications and long term success. Today's average cost is around $25,000-$35,000 dollars if there are no complications.

There is also a mini gastric bypass. It has even fewer complications and can actually be done in around 45 minutes. The patient can even leave the hospital within 24 hours. The cost of this surgery can be as low as $12,000.

Before agreeing to any weight loss surgery options be sure and discuss all of them with your doctor and go with his advice or get another opinion if you feel you need it to be comfortable.