STAPLETON: Some tips for losing weight

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By Dr. James Stapleton

One way to improve or maintain your health is to eat right. Here are some tips on eating from the American Chiropractic Association:

  • Eat more raw foods. Cooking and canning eliminate much of the nutrition in foods.
  • Choose organically grown foods when possible. They have lower levels of contaminants like pesticides and heavy metals.
  • Consume 25 to 30 grams of fiber every day. Sources include whole-grain breads, nuts, vegetables, fruits and beans. A high-fiber diet can help prevent heart disease and colon cancer.
  • Drink eight to 10 8-ounce glasses of water every day. Don’t substitute coffee, tea, soft drinks or an alcoholic drink. They will actually dehydrate you.

And lifestyle changes will also give your health and your life in general a big boost: exercise at least 20 minutes four days a week. Quit smoking. Limit your intake of alcohol. Smoking and drinking, aside from the other problems those habits cause, impair your body’s ability to absorb nutrients.


Anatomy of the back

The human back and spine comprise a complex system that impacts your entire body. Keeping your spine in proper alignment, which is the specialty of the doctor of chiropractic, is essential to the smooth functioning of your other parts.

The spinal column is the main pillar of the back. It is made up of more than 30 individual bones, collectively called the vertebrae, separated by spongy pads of cartilage called discs.

The spinal cord runs from the bottom of the brain through holes in the vertebrae. The spinal cord sends signals to the body through nerves that emerge between the vertebrae.

The spine is divided into four regions: The upper part, the neck, is called the cervical. The upper back is called the thoracic. The lower part of the back is the lumbar. It leads into the sacrum, the lower part of the spine, and the coccyx, the tailbone.

It is the lumbar region where most back pain develops. The spinal cord actually ends just below the rib cage. From there, nerves to the lower back and legs grow through the spinal column before exiting.

The bundle of nerves looks like a horse’s tail, hence its Latin name: cauda equina.    


Dr. James Stapleton is an owner of Shelby County Chiropractic. You may reach him at 633-1073 or visit www.shelbycountychiropractic.com.