Cooking oils are a topic I get questions about all the time.  This is largely because it is one of the most misunderstood areas of cooking and diet and there is soooo much information out that is just plain wrong.

 

Now please notice I titled this article the #1 reason you shouldn’t cook with olive oil.  I still want you to use it often. You see all oils have something called a smoke point. This is the temperature at which the molecules in the oil start to break down and form free radicals. Free radicals are cancer causing components that result from the oxidation of the oil.

 

Olive oil is a great source of healthy fats and polyphenols (plant compounds that benefit health). It has been linked to heart benefits, weight loss and is an incredible food everyone should be eating on a daily basis. It also has a very low smoke point.  This means that anytime you go to saute or pan fry food in olive oil the oil is going rancid on the pan if you use anything more than low heat (about 3/10 on the heat dial of most stove tops).

 

So olive oil is great for adding to salads, veggies and other foods. It’s great if you heat the oil on low heat and toss meats or veggies in in.  Just don’t do your normal cooking with it.

 

Ok, so now your not using olive oil to cook. What should you use?  My top 2 recommendations for cooking oils are ghee (clarified butter) and virgin cold-press coconut oil.  Both these fats have high smoke points so you can safely saute and pan fry without fear of the oil going bad on the pan and losing all its wonderful health benefits!

 

Utilizing all three of these fats on a weekly basis is a fantastic way to get healthy fats into your diet and enjoy tasty, healthy food.

 

I periodically send out emails with recipes, advice and in several weeks my second book will be coming out.  Stay in the loop and join our email list from the link above.  You can also follow us on Facebook where I regularly post videos and blog posts of health related info.

Headaches are a very common condition.

If you or someone you know suffers from chronic headaches you know how awful and debilitating they can be.  Whether its tension behind the eyes or at the base of the neck or migraines headaches are one of the most common problems people face. The good news is that in many cases they can be treated naturally without pills in a relatively short period of time.

One way to get some instant relief from a headache is a little muscle technique I show my patients.  To do it, you make a fist with the index fingers middle knuckle slightly raised.  Then you press the knuckle gently into the neck muscles that are feeling tight.  Turn the head away from the knuckle about 45 degrees. Then with the other hand lightly apply pressure to the forehead while gently pressing the knuckle into the tight muscles.  Hold this for about a minute. You can move the knuckle pressure point up and down the neck and repeat as needed.

This technique is great for some immediate symptomatic relief but it alone is not enough to eliminate headaches. The reason for this is that while the muscles being tight makes headaches worse, the reason the muscles are tight in the first place is often that the bones in the neck are misaligned and putting pressure on the spinal nerves which go to the muscles in the neck, head and upper back and shoulders.

Muscle reacts linearly to pressure on nerves. In other words, the more pressure on the nerves going to a specific muscle the tighter that muscle will be. If you can press on your neck or shoulders and it feels like a bar of iron or like there is a golf ball in there the bones in your neck are certainly misaligned and pinching the nerves exiting your spine.

There is a reason I treat so many people for headaches.  Typically as we begin to address the underlying cause of the muscle tension and add some simple home care suggestions most people see dramatic relief within a few visits and in many cases complete resolution of the problem within several weeks.

If you have problems with headaches call our office today. You can also send us a message on Facebook or walk in to our offices as well. Don’t suffer needlessly with headaches.  Address the underlying cause and feel better naturally without surgery or drugs.

I treat people for pinched nerves every day.  Some people come in and say “I have a pinched nerve.” Others have no idea if they do or not.  Some tell me their doctor told them they have a pinched nerve. The reality is the term gets tossed around a lot without much accuracy as to what is happening in the body and today I’d like to clear up how to tell if you have a pinched nerve in your neck or spine.

First a brief anatomy lesson… Your brain is connected to your muscles and organs via the spinal cord and the peripheral nerves.  This system is how the brain relays information to and from the organs and muscles.  ANY interference in this communication results in the decreased function of the muscle or organ at the end of the nerve being affected.  If you need an example of this hit your “funny bone”. That is actually the ulnar nerve and the effect from hitting is like what goes on when a bone pinches a nerve exiting the spine.

The most common form of nerve interference is when spinal nerves exiting the spine are compressed by misaligned vertebrae. We call this a spinal subluxation.  Since what is basically happening is the nerve is being pinched we can safely say that potentially ANY back or neck problem is from a pinched nerve. The question is to what degree is the nerve pinched? By the way, this the very problem chiropractic adjustments address.

There are essentially 3 levels of nerve compression or a “pinched nerve” people deal with. Remember that whether its an organ or a muscle whatever happens to be at the end of a pinched nerve will not function at 100%.

The 3 levels I see are

1-Tight muscles: when there is a mild to moderate amount of pressure on the nerve the first thing a muscle will do is tighten up. This is due a reduction in function and the body is essentially trying to protect the area so it is not injured further.

2-Pain: if the problem continues unaddressed, eventually the muscle will tighten and the function will decrease to the level where symptoms of pain begin. This might first be noticed as a pain that comes and goes, comes on with certain activities and eventually progresses to a constant pain of varying degrees.

3- Numbness, tingling, burning or shooting pain: eventually the problems progresses so that there is enough pressure on the nerve to cause the symptoms that indicate the nerve is actually being damaged.  At this point function is so reduced that the body is basically trying to shut down the area so that it has time to heal it as much as it can. Typically at this point without chiropractic care the best you can hope for is a coming and going of pain as the body tries desperately to maintain as much function as possible for as long as possible.  This is the level where medical doctors commonly refer to the problem as a “pinched nerve”. However you can see the problem has been developing slowly over a number of weeks, months or even years.

Like I mentioned above the underlying cause is pressure on the nerve from misaligned vertebrae.  Chiropractic addresses this problem and it is possible to see significant improvement and in many cases complete recovery. Removing the problem allows the body to take over and heal the affected areas without drugs, surgery or other interventions.

If you struggle with these types of problems we can help. We offer Free Consultations so reach out to us by calling, Facebook Messenger or just stop in.  We are here to help you be as healthy as possible.

 

 

People often come to me with neck and shoulder problems that just don’t seem to go away.  They have usually tried physical therapy, pain medications and in some cases dry needling and deep tissue massage all with little or no improvement.

In cases like these I add two things to their treatment protocol.  The first is stretching the pectoralis muscles. The pectoralis muscles run from roughly the sternum out to the shoulder. When tight, as they are on virtually everyone these days, they pull the shoulder forward stressing the neck and middle back. This causes shoulder pain, neck pain and back pain and leads me to the next aspect of treating these kinds of problems.

Chiropractic adjustments. Without adjusting all the stretching in the world won’t lead to lasting improvement because when the shoulder is pulled forward is causes the spinal vertebrae in the neck and middle back to shift slightly which pinches the nerves exiting the spine in the neck and mid back. Muscle reacts to the nerve being pinched by tightening up because your body looks at this nerve being pinched as an injury and is trying to protect itself. This perpetuates the problem which usually gets worse over time as the pinching on the nerve becomes steadily worse.

Remember also that nerves exiting the spine go two primary places, the organs and muscles, and anything at the end of a pinched nerve will not be functioning at 100%.  In the case of the neck and upper back the heart, lungs and thyroid may be affected which further decreases the overall health of the body.

Usually once I implement these two things the problem gets better pretty quickly. As the nerve flow is restored and muscle function improves the majority of symptoms disappear as the body takes care of its own healing quite nicely.  The pec stretch also often addresses the muscles most responsible for pulling the vertebrae out of place so its important as well.

If you are having shoulder, neck or mid back problems contact us. We offer free consultations so you can know if I think I can help you with your problem.  I see 2-3 shoulder pain cases a week so I’m very familiar with the areas involved and how to treat them.  You can call us, message us on Facebook or just stop in. We’ll do everything we can to get you feeling better.

 

 

By now you have probably heard of chiropractic. Maybe you think of them as back crackers, pain doctors or maybe what they do is still a complete mystery to you.

Whatever the case, in this article I’m going to explain what chiropractic care is and how it works to not only heal pain but actually optimize the function of the body.

First, a brief anatomy lesson. When a new human being is developing in the womb the VERY FIRST organ to form is the brain and the spinal cord and nerves.  Think about that for a moment.  Before anything else nature lays down the bodies communication pathways.  They must therefore be necessary for the development of the rest of the organs.

Also consider that nature takes special care to protect the brain and spinal cord. They are encased in hard bone so that they are protected from injury. No other organ is afforded such protection.  Again, this indicates how important the nervous system is!

The spine is made of up of mobile segments called vertebrae.  At each level of the spine from head to tailbone nerves exit the spine and go to the muscles and organs. These vertebrae CAN and WILL become misaligned and pinch the nerves as they exit the spine. This is the root problems chiropractors treat because whatever is at the end of the pinched nerve will not be functioning at 100%. When this happens we call it a spinal subluxation.

Humans experience the effects of subluxations when they feel muscle tightness and pain in the body.  Common symptoms that cause people to seek chiropractic care are headaches, backaches, sciatica, shoulder problems and knee and foot pain among many others.

It is also common for people to notice things like heart palpitations (fluttering), digestive problems, constipation and brief dizziness when standing if the organ systems are being negatively affected by subluxations pinching the nerves that supply the organs.

Chiropractors assess the spine for areas where the bones are misaligned and pinching the nerves.  We then gently adjust the segments involved, removing the subluxation and allowing the body to take over and heal itself.  You see, chiropractors are not really concerned with pain at all! We are worried about optimizing the function of the body as a whole.

As treatment progresses pain decreases and because the organ systems are working more efficiently people generally feel better as a whole.  You don’t need to wait until there is pain to seek chiropractic care. In fact, by the time pain is present you have already had subluxaitons affecting your health for some time. You just haven’t noticed until it was far enough along to cause symptoms.

Everyone can benefit from chiropractic care. At our office we offer free consultations if you have a problem you would like to know if chiropractic can help or if you are interested in improving your overall health and well-being.

Call us, message us on Facebook or just stop in! We are excited to help you and your family start feeling better and living life to it’s fullest potential!

 

You may have heard the news… certain foods contain fiber that is exceptionally good for us. The reason? What you eat feeds either the good bacteria that live in our gut or the bad bacteria that live in our gut.

The good guys digest the foods we eat and give us essential fatty acids, organic acids, micronutrients and protect us from the bad guys. The bad bugs produce inflammatory signals that weaken our bodies and slowly but surely deteriorate our health.

As you can see what we eat has a huge impact on our health. The good news? It’s easier than you think to eat well and watch our health improve as a result.  These are 5 of my personal favorites that give you the most bang for your buck in terms of gut heath.

I’ll be publishing a book in around September that will have more info on the gut health and recipes as well so check back in the fall for more information. For now, here are some of the best foods to add to your diet today to start reaping the benefits of feeding the good gut buddies.

  1. Artichoke Hearts– buy them jarred in water. You can add them to salads, stir-fries or just eat them right out of the jar (like I do!).
  2. Ground Flax Seeds– in addition to the ample fiber that the good gut bugs love flax seeds contain essential fatty acids and some protein as well. Very good for feeding our friendly gut buddies. Please note they do need to be fresh ground to get the full benefit as the fatty acids in flax seeds go bad quickly once exposed to air.
  3. Avocados– this fruit is full of healthy fiber and health fat. Slice them and put them on salads, blend them in a smoothie or mash them up into guacamole. These delicious foods are versatile and delicious.
  4. Sweet Potatoes– these are a great source of a special type of fiber called resistant starch. This means that while we cannot digest it the good bacteria in our gut can and they love it! Adding a half a sweet potato a day to the diet is easy and delicious.
  5. Jicama– what, you’ve never heard of jicama? Just kidding. I hadn’t either until relatively recently. You can find them in most grocery stores. All you do is slice them up and peel them. Then you can eat this crunchy, almost sweet veggie as is or dip it in guacamole for super healthy treat.

 

 

These are 5 of my favorites but there are many, many more great choices. Leafy greens, all cruciferous veggies, garlic, onions and more all feed our helpful little gut buddies!  Keep watching for more articles and don’t forget to check back for the book in the fall.

Adding the right foods to your diet can work wonders for your health.  One thing that I personally have had great results with is adding sources of soluble fiber and while many of my favorite recipes are delicious and healthy they can be somewhat time consuming.

The real importance of adding soluble fibers to the diet is that the good bacteria in our gut love them and when we eat things they like they repay the favor by providing important fatty acids, amino acids and by making certain micronutrients like zinc and selenium more available for our cells to use.

With that in mind I came up with this smoothie which adds several outstanding sources of fiber that feed the good bacteria in the gut and provide many important nutrients.  As an added benefit, it tastes pretty good too!  This smoothie is at it best as a breakfast replacement meal but can be enjoyed anytime. See below for the recipe.

 

Dr. Austin’s Green Smoothie

1 cup fresh spinach

½ avocado

1 tablespoon fresh ground flax seeds

¼ cup mixed berries

Juice from 1/4 fresh squeezed lemon

1 teaspoon raw cocoa powder

1 packet stevia for sweetness

2 cups water

 

Place all ingredients in blender and pulse until smooth. Add additional water if its too thick initially.

 

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If you live in Wisconsin then you know that over the past 3 weeks we’ve seen some record breaking snow fall.  And while its certainly a site to behold actually moving all that snow can be a major pain in the back, literally!

 

Have you ever noticed that shoveling snow has a sneaky ability to absolutely destroy your back? Ever wonder why that is? Well, the reason is quite simple. Shoveling snow combines two of the most difficult things for your back to do at the same time.  Lifting and twisting.

 

Either one on its own is not necessarily a big deal.  We can lift heavy amounts of weight without damaging the spine.  We are also built to be able to twist. However when combined the two movements spell trouble, especially for the low back.

 

This is because the combined movements of lifting and twisting create a “shearing” pressure on the spinal discs. This motion dramatically increases the risk of both muscle injury and pinching of the nerves exiting the spine in the low back.  This is why it is not uncommon for low back injuries resulting from snow shoveling to have both muscle pain and shooting or tingling pain.  The risk of injury is further increased if the person has a pre-existing herniated disc, degenerated disc or history of low back trauma.

 

The bottom line is to be very careful when shoveling snow. Lift only lighter loads and fully lift the snow before turning to dump it.  The more aware you are of what you are doing the better your chances of getting all that white mess moved without hurting yourself.

 

If you do manage to injure yourself, fortunately chiropractic can help you fully heal quickly. If injury does occur schedule your appointment as soon as possible. The longer a spinal injury goes without being addressed the longer it takes to fully heal once treatment begins.  Be safe out there!

 

 

 

*To make an appointment call either my Glenwood City or 4 Corners office or message the clinic on Facebook.

Whether you have never seen a chiropractor, you go frequently or your somewhere in between now is the perfect time to start receiving regular chiropractic care. Why? Here are several of the key benefits of chiropractic care

Effectively manage pain- maybe you have a problem with headaches or some tight shoulders. Maybe your problem is a bit more intense like sciatica or numbness or tingling in the hands or feet? Whatever the pain chances are good that chiropractic can help improve it if not get rid of it completely.

 

Preventing long term joint problems- your spinal joints do wear out over time. Cartilage between the spinal joints thin, discs between the vertebrae wear out, bone on bone causes arthritis. It happens. It’s a slow process that often takes years for symptoms do show but it happens to everyone. Receiving regular chiropractic adjustments slows these problems down dramatically.  Remember, what’s annoying today is a crisis tomorrow.

 

Promotes overall health- nerves don’t just go to muscles. They also travel to all the organ systems as well.  Pressure on a nerve exiting the spine that goes to the liver causes decreased liver function. Ditto for the heart, stomach, intestines and… well I think you get the picture.  Overall chiropractic just helps the body work better.

 

Ok, so what does a chiropractic visit look like? Let’s say your totally new to my office. The first visit will entail some simple paperwork telling me a bit about your overall health, anything in your health history I should be aware of and some specifics about your problem.  This takes only a few minutes to fill out plus we’ll go over any insurance you may have (remember we accept Forward Health, Medicare and most commercial insurances).

 

After that I will do a spinal examination. Depending on your problem this could be as simple as a range of motion test and palpating (feeling)the spine or could involve reflexes, muscle testing or other examining techniques as needed. In rare instances I will refer out for imaging if I think it is needed.

 

Last, I will ordinarily do a few chiropractic adjustments. The spinal exam will show me where you have subluxations (bones of out of place) in your spine. These are the root problems causing your symptoms.  The adjustments are generally done by hand. I will then push the bones back into place.  Afterwards I usually have the person being adjusted lay on our spinal traction table to further relax the spine following the adjustment.

 

This simple but profoundly beneficial treatment takes only a few minutes per visit after the first time. I will also make home care recommendations as well as provide your with a treatment plan in order to help your specific condition.

Need to make an appointment? You can reach my Glenwood City office at 715-265-7500, the 4 Corners at 715-246-7500 or message me via the Arvold Chiropractic Facebook page messenger.

The most common cause of back pain is a spinal subluxation, or a bone out of place.  Once a bone is not in the proper alignment it places stress on the spinal joints which if not corrected leads to degeneration of cartilage between the joints, degenerative disc disease and the formation of arthritis.

 

Most problems are caused by repetitive stresses that we place on our bodies. These can range from poor postures, movements associated with our jobs or recreational activities or other minor things we don’t even know we do.

 

Enter our feet!  One of the most common signs I see in my practice that people have spinal problems is chronic foot pain.  These poor people usually have long standing, aching to sharp pain in one or both feet that is a daily struggle. Some days it might be better other worse but it almost always there. This tells us two things.

  • Something is stressing the tissues of the foot daily
  • The foot is not adequately supporting the rest of the body, including the spine

 

This scenario often leads to a situation where each problem is negatively affecting the other. The foot doesn’t support the spine leading to spinal problems. In order to compensate for this the body shifts in such a way as to add more pressure to the feet by rotating the pelvis and the femur. This often leads to collapsed arches (flat foot).  Adjustments often provide relief, but the problems often return in these people because the underlying problem with the feet is not being addressed.

 

In order to properly treat this condition, the use of specialized orthotics is usually necessary. Orthotics are custom made shoe inserts that support the persons foot in the areas where it is not supporting the weight of the body correctly. Combined with chiropractic care to address the subluxations in the spine many people can completely recover from this condition.

 

Does this sound like you? We offer free foot scans that will show us if indeed you suffer from this problem. Call us to set up a scan at 715-246-7500 today or contact us via Facebook messenger.

Arvold Chiropractic Blog

The #1 Reason You Should NOT Cook with Olive Oil

A glass bottle of olive oil and a wooden spoon with  olives on a table

Cooking oils are a topic I get questions about all the time.  This is largely because it is one of the most misunderstood areas of cooking and diet and there is soooo much information out that is just plain wrong. … Continue reading

1 Simple Trick That Reduces Headaches Quickly

A Colourful 3d Rendered Better vs Worse Concept Switch

Headaches are a very common condition. If you or someone you know suffers from chronic headaches you know how awful and debilitating they can be.  Whether its tension behind the eyes or at the base of the neck or migraines … Continue reading

3 Clear Indications of a Pinched Nerve

Cause and effect concept made on transparent wipe board with a hand holding a marker

I treat people for pinched nerves every day.  Some people come in and say “I have a pinched nerve.” Others have no idea if they do or not.  Some tell me their doctor told them they have a pinched nerve. … Continue reading