Wellness Blogs

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DR. DAVE MENNER'S BLOG

Dr. David Menner, a Lake Zurich-based doctor of chiropractic with more than 27 years of clinical experience in chiropractic care and sports medicine, runs this blog full of educational posts on topics such as workspace ergonomics and overall wellness.

How to prevent injuries while being physically active?

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As some of you may already know, Dr. Dave works out 1-2 times a day, once before work and again after work. We often have patients asking him “How do you prevent yourself from getting injured?” As you might have heard muscular injury is one of the major problems facing today’s athletes, both recreational and professional. As a result, it is imperative to utilize the most effective means to aid in deterring these injuries. 

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Training for a Triathlon

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As some of you may know I participated in my first triathlon last year. This year I decided to do it again and ended up beating my previous time! The question I am asked the most is "How did I condition my body in the weeks prior to get ready for the upcoming triathlon?".  For me, it all starts with my mindset, making the commitment was only the first step. Everyday I was training I challenged my self and pushed my self outside of my comfort zone.If you workout regularly you can be ready for your first triathlon in only 12 weeks, granted I recommend getting started sooner to give yourself more time if you currently are not exercising regularly.

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Fueled through Nutrition

HOW DO I KEEP MY BODY FUELED WITH THE PROPER NUTRITION?

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Training for a triathlon can be hard work. One of the most important aspects to keep in mind is how you fuel your body with the proper nutrition. As many of you know a car requires gasoline to run, you also have a choice of gasoline grades to use depending on the performance you want out of your car. Likewise, your body requires fuel for energy, and just as there are different grades of gasoline, there are different types of foods to fuel your body. The timing, type, combination, and consistency of foods you eat can greatly influence your energy levels throughout your day!

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Lifestyle Choices

How can you change your lifestyle for the better?

Lifestyle choices

Our lifestyle choices play a key role in keeping us from getting hurt or sick. Limited sleep, inactivity, and poor nutrition can increase the risk of injury and disease. Also, increasing our sleep, activity, and the quality of what we eat and drink can speed recovery from a disease or illness. Less than 70% of adults get enough sleep each night. Poor sleep—less than 7 to 8 hours each night—is related to depression, work-related injuries, and weight gain. In addition, less than 45% of adults get the recommended 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity daily. Inactivity is tied to chronic disease, weight gain, and poor sleep. Finally, only 30% of Americans are at a healthy weight. Poor nutrition—too much sugar and fat and not enough fruits and vegetables—is linked to disease, depression, and inadequate sleep.

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Overall Wellness

How does Chiropractic Care Promote Overall Wellness? 

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As chiropractors we know that adjustments are good for your general health. Millions of satisfied patients cannot be wrong. But what do chiropractors know that the rest of us do not?

They know the nervous system is the one system in the body that directly affects every other system. This is because nerves conduct sensory information from every part of the body and then delivers this information to the brain. Once there, the brain analyzes the information to determine what the body needs to maintain a healthy state. So the health of this system is paramount to the good health of the rest of the body.

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Ergonomics

WHY IS ERGONOMICS IMPORTANT? work space ergonomics2

Think about how many hours each day you spend sitting. If you work in an office setting, you are likely sitting more than most people. According to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) statistics, on average, 95% of an office worker’s day is spent sitting in front of the computer. Sitting in front of a computer all day for work is a relatively new concept that has become more common over the past two decades. Consequently, the adverse health effects associated with prolonged sitting have become more prevalent and are exacerbated when working at a computer. This is often due to poorly designed computer workstations and the physical stress that it places on joints, muscles, tendons, and nerves of the body.

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DR. ALAN BROERING'S BLOG

Find out what Dr. Alan Broering has been up to! This blog is loaded with fun, engaging postings by Dr. Alan Broering, who weighs in on sports related and nonsports related issues. The blog features everything from personal accounts of patients struggling though pain to living life in moderation with his family.

Day 15: Vote H2O

Hydrate. Hydrate. Hydrate. It is so vital to our body yet most of us do not get enough. Proper hydration supports a healthy immune system, blood pressure, mucosal linings, muscles, and pretty much every other activity in our body. We can die of thirst!!!!!!

Ok, I think I got the point across about water but how much should you drink per day?  Half your body weight in ounces is the recommendation for water consumption. Then for every 15-30 minutes of exercise you should add another 8 oz.  if you are starting to get your intake back up so it gradually throughout the day. Do not chug the water. If you chug it the water will go through you just as fast as you drank it. Initially when getting to half your body weight you will need to use the restroom more. Your body will adapt and you will feel better when you have the proper balance inside!

Homework: Calculate how much water you typically get in a day. If it’s not half your body weight you know what to do!

Dr. Alan Broering D.C., CCSP® 

Eat Well. Move Well. Live Well.


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Day 14: Choose Fiber

The first thing that comes to mind when I hear the word fiber is Raisin Bran. It was a staple in the house growing up. My dad’s favorite cereal. Packed with bran flakes and sugar coated raisins it made the perfect choice of the day to keep you regular and to keep you feeling full. In the case of most bran flakes and high fiber cereals, you get the benefits to insoluble fiber. Insoluble fiber helps to allow bulk to your stool and creates a liquid plumber like effect as it passes through clearing out the junk.  Soluble fiber is called such because when added to water the fiber becomes soluble. This is the fiber that is found in most of our plant based foods. The fiber that is in most whole foods works to slow the absorption of sugar into the body. Therefore, making it easier to control our blood sugar levels. When breaking down a whole grain into flour you destroy a large part of the fiber network making it easy to extract the simple carbohydrates which are quickly transformed into glucose in our mouths.

The recommended amount of fiber per day is 20-30g. Most of us are lucky to get 10-15g. When adding fiber to your routine do it slowly and make sure to drink extra water. This will help to minimize the bloating or possible constipation as your body adapts to the increased consumption. So do your digestive system a solid and eat more fiber.

Homework: calculate the average amount of fiber you get in a day. If under 20-30g slowly increase it using a mixture of fiber types.

Dr. Alan Broering D.C., CCSP® 

Eat Well. Move Well. Live Well.


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Day 13: Vote No to Stretches

Yes, you read that right. I said No to Stretching! Before anyone gets in an uproar, allow me to explain. First off, I'm not against stretching in all instances. What I am against is stretching when, in fact, it's strengthening that you need to be doing. Stretching is what most of us do in response to muscle aches, tightness, and pain. It feels good while your doing it, but that relief lasts, what, maybe 10-20 minutes?  If that is truly the problem and you have a shortened and tight muscle, shouldn't stretching it fix it for longer than 30 minutes?

Let's dive in to a common thing I see in the office. 36-year-old patient presents with a chief complaint of neck discomfort stating their neck has been tight and stiff for the last 3 weeks. The pain began without a known cause and is gradually getting worse. They sit at a desk most of the day doing computer work.  Sounds like anyone you know? (Some of you may be able to look in the mirror) Upon doing my exam I check their range of motion and notice that they have a full range in all directions with no pain. Palpation reveals some tenderness along the spine but no significant tightness or muscle spasms in their neck.

So is this patient just crazy and faking their pain? In my opinion no, what we have here is a case of instability causing pain. In this case the body is straining the muscles together to try and create strength and stability. Their neck joints are too loose!  Imagine playing Jenga. If you stack the blocks too tightly it's hard to remove blocks without knocking the pile over. On the other hand if you pack the blocks too loosely and then you can remove the blocks easier, but the pile will fall down sooner. In both instances the pile falls down sooner than you'd like it to. It takes a perfect balance of strength and looseness for the body to function optimally.

This can occur in any joint! So the next time you feel that need to stretch think twice about why you might feel that way.

Disclaimer: I enjoy yoga and other stretching as much as the next person and there is a time and place for it, but this is something that I believe is a bigger issue that can lead to big problems if not identified.

Dr. Alan Broering D.C., CCSP® 

Eat Well. Move Well. Live Well.


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Day 12: Vote No to Prone Zzzs...

Happy Monday! I bet some of you wish you were still in bed catching a few extra zzz’s.  I have previously talked about the importance of getting 8 hours of sleep but is it it possible that your sleep position costing you restful sleep? Assuming we average 8 hours of sleep every night, this means that 33% of your life is spent sleeping!!! If you aren't paying attention to how you sleep then it is time you start.

In no instances should you ever sleep at night lying prone (on your stomach). This position allows gravity to act on our body in a negative way. It increases pressure in our chest making it harder to breathe, compresses our digestive organs, increases pressure on the lumbar lordosis, and finally it forces you to turn your neck one way or the other. The constant position may cause you to wake up with chronic neck pain or acute neck spasms.  Instead stick to sleeping on your back with a pillow under your knees or your side, preferably your left, with a pillow between your knees. These 2 positions keep your spine more neutral keeping any extra stress off the spine.

Homework: Pay attention to your sleeping position.  If you are finding yourself waking up at night or sleeping on your stomach try one of the 2 positions above.  

Dr. Alan Broering D.C., CCSP® 

Eat Well. Move Well. Live Well.


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Day 11: Choose Beets

I was never much of a beet person until about 2 years ago.  It was probably the flavor that got to me for all of those previous years. That earthy taste takes a little getting used to, but when combined with the right foods the true sweetness of a beet is discovered.  Now, I enjoy on an almost weekly basis. Most often roasted along with some sweet potatoes or I will juice them with their greens and other veggies.

Why should you start eating them? They are packed with nutrients of all types! Vitamin B, Vitamin C, fiber, magnesium, manganese, and copper among others. They are high in nitrates, which will convert to nitric oxide inside the body. Nitric oxide leads to vasodilation making it great for heart health and also a great pre workout food/drink. They also have a phytonutrients called betalains. The phytonutrients are important for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. Beets are considered one of the best foods to eat for liver and gallbladder support. So stop dropping beats and start eating them!

Homework: give beets another try! I love making the juice that includes the following: 1 medium beet with greens, 2 large carrots, 1 stalk of celery, 1 apple, ½ of lemon or lime, and fresh ginger to taste.

Dr. Alan Broering D.C., CCSP® 

Eat Well. Move Well. Live Well.


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Day 10: Vote Chair

Now, the first thing I think of when I read ‘Vote Chair’ is “I love lamp.”- Anchorman Of course there is more to this post than that.  We sit now more than ever and that has led to many health problems. The chair I want to focus on is the chair you use at work. A proper chair for work can make all the difference in the world for your back and neck. Do you find yourself sitting on the front half of your chair and then slouching on your desk?  This is an all to common image in an office setting and your back and neck are screaming for help the entire time.

So what should the proper chair be like? You should be able to sit all the way in the back of the chair while still maintaining contact with your feet on the floor. Your chair should be able to slide under your desk. When seated at your chair you should be comfortable enough as to not need to lean forward onto a desk to see your computer screen. These are all simple things to satisfy. I suggest a firmer chair as well to maintain proper support. Even better don't have a chair at all and get a standing desk!  

Homework: Analyze your office chair to see if it meets the above standards.

Dr. Alan Broering D.C., CCSP® 

Eat Well. Move Well. Live Well.


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Staff Blogs

Our staff here at Menner Chiropractic consist of licensed massage therapists, certified wellness coachs, reiki master, lymphedema and reflexology specialist. In this blog, they share their personal stories and experiences and how it relates to health and wellness.

Physical Activity vs Exercise Regimen

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How does physical activity versus an exercise regimen help reduce the adverse effects of depression and anxiety? Research indicates that even modest amounts of physical activity can make a difference. Regardless the age or fitness level, physical activity and exercise are a powerful tool to feeling better.

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6 Tips to Reduce Stress

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We all experience stress on a regular basis, though the type and intensity of the stress can vary from minor challenges to major crises. When stress gets to be too intense, chronic, and unmanaged, it can take a toll on our health and well-being. That's why effective stress relievers are essential in restoring inner peace and physical health. Here are 6 quick and easy tips to reduce stress throughout your day. 

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Why is it important to be mindful and aware of your everyday activities?

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You fold the laundry while keeping one eye on the kids and another on the television. You plan your day while listening to the radio and commuting to work, and then plan your weekend. But in the rush to accomplish necessary tasks, you may find yourself losing your connection with the present moment—missing out on what you’re doing and how you’re feeling.

Whether we realize it or not, every action we take in our daily life – big or small – has an impact on the way our physical body functions. And over time, any stress on our bodies creates an imbalance that could drain us of strength and energy. For some, an imbalance may result in nagging muscle aches or pains; for others, it may manifest in a chronic condition.

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Struggling with Depression

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Did you know... Fifteen out of one hundred young people with depression take their own lives? Anxiety and depression is a serious illness that can be easily overlooked. Learn what the two major underlying causes are and what we can do to reduce stress.

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PCOS and Nutrition

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A few years ago, I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). I quickly learn a lot of other women suffer with PCOS as well. My gynecologist had suggested that I work out in the mornings and eat healthier. I wondered what does it mean to eat “healthy”? I knew that meant eating more fruits and vegetables, but what does it actually mean to truly eat “healthy” when you have PCOS? 

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American Chiropractic Association
Illinois Chiropractic Society
National University of Health Sciences