Clinic News Aug/Sept 2013

Jaw Pain  and Chiropractic

Does it hurt when you chew, open wide to yawn or use your jaw? Do you have pain or soreness in front of the ear or cheek? Do you have pain or soreness in your teeth? Does your jaw make noises loud enough to bother you or those around you?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you may have a temporomandibular joint dysfunction.
Signs may include:
• Radiating pain in the face, neck, or shoulders;
• Limited movement or locking of the jaw;
• Painful clicking or grating when opening or closing the mouth;
• A significant change in the way the upper and lower teeth fit together;
• Headaches, earaches, dizziness, hearing problems and difficulty swallowing.
For most people, pain or discomfort in the jaw muscles or joints is temporary and it may occur in cycles which will resolve once you stop moving the area. However, some people can develop chronic symptoms called TMD (temporomandibular joint disorders). In our office, we will help to determine the cause of you pain and provide conservative treatment if needed.
What Causes TMD?
Researchers agree that TMD falls into three categories:
• Myofascial pain—discomfort or pain in the muscles of the jaw, neck, and shoulders;
• A dislocated jaw or displaced disc- usually from a trauma: such as motor vehicle accidents, slip or fall, sports injury;
• Degenerative joint disease—rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis in the jaw joint.
In most cases, we can help relieve the symptoms with conservative treatment and we find that the following home care instructions are helpful.
1. Apply ice to the jaw to reduce inflammation and lessen the pain.
2. Avoid harmful joint movements; such as biting on an apple or hard candy.

All Sweeteners Are Not Created Equal
By Dawn Fichter, DC

Many people have been asking about Nectresse, the new monkfruit Sweetener! Is it really healthier than table sugar or Sucralose? Let’s find out.Nectresse is made by the makers of Splenda in response to the success of Stevia sweeteners on the market. It is said to be 100% natural and made from Monk Fruit. The problem is in the manufacturing. We can take even natural products like honey, maple syrup and molasses and move them from the natural state to a highly refined product by the way we process them and sell them in stores.
Monk fruit, like stevia, is 300 times sweeter than refined sugar. Lo Han sweetener and monk fruit sweetener have long been used in China and contain beneficial antioxidants. However, Nectresse, isn’t simply monk fruit. It also contains molasses, sugar and erythritol.
You might be wondering, how can this sugar substitute have 0 calories if it contains sugar? First of all, food producers can say something has 0 calories if it contains less than 5 calories per half teaspoon. Secondly, the sugar alcohol erythritol interferes with your body’s absorption of sugar, further lowering caloric intake. The problem with erythritol is that your body can’t completely absorb it and it can ferment in your digestive tract, causing bloating, diarrhea and gas. This kind of fermentation also raises acidity in your body.
Because foods are considered safe until proven otherwise, many food derivatives are put on the market without research beforehand. There just hasn’t been enough long-term and credible studies of many sugar substitutes. Of the studies that do exist, the FDA doesn’t consider those because they aren’t controlled and the results have not been validated by other researchers. Yale scientist Qing Yang conducted a mini-review of artificial sweeteners in 2010. He found that most of these were discovered when scientists violated laboratory protocol by tasting these substances and that most were never intended to be food products. Saccharin, for instance, came from research on coal tar derivatives. A scientist studying ulcer drugs produced aspartame and sucralose, and Splenda, was generated from a search for new pesticides.
While very direct physical effects may not yet be proven, there have been several substantiated studies that link the use of sugar substitutes to unhealthy eating and obesity. If you choose to use artificial sweeteners, please use them on a limited basis as much as possible. Also, make sure you read the ingredients of your favorite beverages; you may be surprised at what you find lurking inside.
Remember, we’re wired to crave sweet so you shouldn’t suppress that craving. Instead, discover the ways you can fulfill it as you’re meant to: eat real food. If you need to use a sweetener, consider minimally processed applesauce for baking, authentic Lo Han (monk fruit), raw honey or minimally processed maple syrup.

June/July 2013 Clinic News


Inflammatory Musculoskeletal Pain

By Dawn Fichter, DC

Inflammation is the body’s acute, natural response to damaged tissues. Most people normally think of this response when they have external injuries such as a sprain/strain or trauma to an area.
However, we are beginning to see chronic inflammation as a problem of the 21st century. Why you may ask? Our immune system is being overwhelmed by acquired toxins from the environment and our food supply. This leads to inflammatory reactions within our individual cells.

Science is discovering that chronic cellular inflammation can lead to health problems including inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, heart disease and chronic degenerative disease. Other factors that contribute to systemic inflammation include stress, inadequate sleep, and lack of exercise.

This systemic inflammation can then lead to inflammatory spinal pain. The fact that spinal pain may be inflammatory is evidenced by back pain patients who commonly find temporary relief with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS). It would then be recommended that these patients embrace an anti- inflammatory diet.

An excellent example is the Mediterranean diet which includes olive oil, green vegetables and salads, fish as the primary protein, lean meat, eggs and cheese. What is absent in this diet is sugar, refined grains, and legumes which are overtly inflammatory. It is not an easy change but if you can commit to this for a period of 12 weeks, you will begin to see significant reductions in chronic systemic inflammation and its resulting effects.

Supplements can be added to support this anti-inflammatory diet. Examples include Boswelia, ginger and Omega-3 fatty acids which are helpful in reducing inflammation as well as pain management. For more specific information, I offer nutritional consultations. The initial appointment is 40 minutes and I will ask specific questions regarding your diet and overall health. Before the initial appointment, I do ask that you keep a food journal for two weeks. This will help me determine specific areas of nutritional imbalances in your body. I will then outline small, yet specific changes that can be made in your diet and/or the addition of supplements to address these concerns in order to help you regain balance in your overall health.

Electroacupuncture for Chronic Pain          

By Laura Camus, EAMP

On a recent episode of Dr. OZ, electro acupuncture was considered an effective treatment for low back pain. Electroacupuncture is quite similar to traditional acupuncture in that the same points are stimulated during treatment. As with traditional acupuncture, needles are inserted on specific points along the body. The needles (1/50th the size of a hypodermic needle) are then attached to a device that generates continuous electric pulses similar to muscle “stim” used in physical therapy settings. In the United States, electroacupuncture has been studied for a variety of conditions. It has also been effectively used as a form of anesthesia; as a pain reliever for muscle spasms; and a treatment for neurological disorders.
Traditional acupuncture has also been found to reduce some of the major inflammatory markers in the body as well as stimulation of the body’s own anti-inflammatory response. This results in pain relief, relaxation and the ability for the body to continue healing. The best way to find out how it will work for you is to try it! If you are interested in experiencing electroacupuncture or traditional acupuncture, schedule an appointment today.


Wolf Chiropractic Clinic Welcomes Lisa Bliss, MD

We are pleased to welcome Dr. Lisa Bliss.   Dr. Bliss is a Physiatrist (pronounced “fizz-EYE-a-trist”), or rehabilitation physician, who specializes in nerve, muscle, and bone illnesses that affect how you move.

The job of a rehabilitation physician is to treat any disability resulting from disease or injury, from sore shoulders to spinal cord injuries. The focus is on the development of a comprehensive program for putting the pieces of a person’s life back together after injury or disease – without surgery.

Rehabilitation physicians take the time needed to pinpoint accurately the source of an ailment. They then design a treatment plan that can be carried out by the patients themselves or with the help of the rehabilitation physician’s medical team. This team might include other physicians and health care professionals such as: neurologists, orthopedic surgeons, chiropractors, and physical therapists, massage therapists and acupuncturists. By providing an appropriate treatment plan, rehabilitation physicians helppeople stay as active aspossible at any age.  Dr. Bliss sees new patients by referral only.

Massage and Low Back Pain

                              By Colene Lange, LMP

Low back pain can be a very frustrating thing to deal with.  Repetitive movements like sitting, standing, and transitions from a seated position can be very difficult to do.  As a result, many people suffer with discomfort due to muscle weakness or disc conditions. 

Think of the low back as a teeter-totter.  Understand that muscles assist in moving the spine and joints.  The stronger muscles attach to pelvis and hip joint allowing for movement of the legs.  If any one of these muscle groups is tighter than another, then they will pull or tip the pelvis in that direction.   At the time this is happening, the lumbar spine is the victim of a powerful game of tug-of-war. And all you know, is that your back hurts. 

Massage can help by reducing this muscle tension in the low back which will allow you to move more freely and with less pain. 


January 2013 Clinic News

Don’t Let the Flu Get You Down!

by Dr. Fichter

It is that time of year, when many of us begin to have the winter blues and unfortunately sometimes winter colds and flu.

When going to the health food store, the natural alternatives can be overwhelming.  I would like to help shed some light on a few supplements that may be helpful for you and your family in restoring balance to the body and fighting the unpleasant symptoms of the flu and cold season. Two Powerful supplements to consider would be Zinc and Echinacea.

Zinc– Taking zinc, either as a syrup or lozenge, through the first few days of a cold may shorten the misery of an upper respiratory infection.  A recent research review of 15 studies also concluded that it is found to cut the number of sick days kids had in the school year. Zinc is believed to help fight colds by interfering with the viruses ability to reproduce in about 80% of all colds.  Experts, stress that more research is needed before the most effective kind of zinc can be determined, and they caution not to have doses above 35 milligrams per day. A great product I recommend is Garden of Life Raw Zinc which consists of 30 mg and is a whole food supplement.

Echinacea– Echinacea is a popular herb and can be used to support both short-term immune challenges.  Echinacea root is shown to boost the white cell count which assists in fighting against viruses and free radicals.   Alkylamides, a component found in Echinacea is reported to stimulate healthy immune responses.  It is also the substance that causes the tingling sensation in your mouth when taking a liquid form.   It is important to purchase a top quality form of Echinacea and the species used is very important.  I recommend Echinacea angustifolia and Echinacea purpurea roots because they are considered to be the most valuable and effective species.   In our office, we have Mediherb Echinacea Premium for purchase and it is available in both tablets and liquid.   Please schedule a nutritional consultation with any further questions.

Boost the Immune System with Acupuncture

by Laura Camus, EAMP

Acupuncture is most commonly known as a treatment for pain management, but did you know that acupuncture can also boost the immune system?  There are many acupuncture points on the body designed to keep you healthy and boost the body’s natural defenses.  Acupuncture can also help improve circulation, metabolism and the digestive system all of which contribute to a healthy immune system.  Whether you have the common cold, a stuffy nose, cough or sore throat acupuncture can help. Try Laura’s home remedy on page 2 which can help relieve sinus congestion and a sore throat.

What are your Health Goals for 2013?

To work out every day, never eat another Twinkie?  Whatever your goals may be, they need to be realistic and obtainable otherwise we set ourselves up to fail.

I recommend eliminating the words never, every, and always from your vocabulary when developing a health plan.  We are going to have many good days and some bad days.  THAT IS OK, YOU’RE HUMAN!  DON’T FORGET THAT!


1) START A FOOD JOURNAL– This will help keep you on track and help you see where you are doing well and where you can improve.

2) GET MOVING– Exercise at least 10 minutes a day.  We all can find 10 minutes to exercise if we really want to.  A great place to find some 10 minute exercise routines for all fitness levels can be found on

3) EAT 4-5 SMALL MEALS EACH DAY– Include a variety of fruits and vegetables both raw and cooked. This will help provide a variety of important nutrients to sustain a healthier body.

4) DRINK WATER! – This does not include TEA, COFFEE, JUICE OR MILK.  In addition to those beverages you need on average 6-8 glasses of water a day.  We need water to live and our body relies on it to function.  Dehydration of the body is contributing to many health concerns including joint pain, disc problems, skin issues, and constipation.

Celebrate the NEW YEAR by developing a new positive habit and stick with it for 45 days and then it will become part of your lifestyle.

October 2012 Clinic News

Is your child’s backpack making the grade?

Carrying a backpack to and from school may seem harmless, but it can cause neck pain, back pain and headaches.  Remember, it is not normal for children to experience these symptoms.

Tips for a Safe Backpack

Lighten the Load:

A heavy backpack forces the wearer to bend forward. Choose to carry only those items that are required for the day. Each night remove articles that can be left at home. When organizing the contents of the backpack, distribute the weight evenly. Place the heaviest items on the bottom to keep the weight off of the shoulders and maintain better posture.

Wear Both Straps:

By wearing two shoulder straps, the weight of the backpack is distributed more evenly and it will help a child’s posture while wearing it.

Wear the backpack over the mid back:

The backpack should rest evenly in the middle of the back and not below the lower back.  The straps should not be too loose but adjusted enough to allow the child to freely move their shoulders and remove the backpack. A padded back reduces pressure on the back, shoulders, and under arms helping to enhance comfort.

Warning signs that a backpack is too heavy:

  • Change in posture when wearing the backpack
  • Difficulty putting on or taking off the backpack
  • Pain when wearing the backpack
  • Red marks, tingling or numbness

As Summer Fades…Remember the “Sunshine Vitamin”


The best source of vitamin D is the sun.  For decades we have been told to avoid the sun to reduce the risk of skin cancer but now many scientists criticize this approach.  We need moderate sun exposure by exposing our face, arms, hands, legs or back to the sun at least twice a week for 10 to 15 minutes. With the long winter months approaching, how do we do this in Spokane?  Because we cannot get sun, many of us have extremely low levels of Vitamin D.

Why is Vitamin D important?  In recent years there have been numerous research studies that show that Vitamin D deficiency is linked to osteoporosis, chronic inflammation, decreased immune system function, multiple sclerosis, mood disorders and increased risks for various cancers.  Remember, Vitamin D is activated by sunlight from the skin, which is then released into the bloodstream, where it travels to the liver and kidneys to become activated.  Production is increased or decreased in response to the body’s needs.

Many believe tanning beds are a great way to supplement natural sunlight.  Most tanning beds only give you UVA rays or UVB rays and you need both UVA and UVB.  The risks of tanning beds far outweigh the potential benefits.  The best way to counteract the lack of sun in the winter in the Pacific Northwest is to consume good dietary sources including salmon, mackerel, tuna, sardines, and other fatty coldwater fish, shrimp, beef liver, egg yolks and sun-dried mushrooms.  Another healthy option is to supplement with Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol). Research studies are showing that most individuals will benefit by supplementing with 2,000 to 5,000 IU each day.  This is considered a very safe amount especially in the Northwest where many people have extremely low levels of Vitamin D.  If you have any questions or concerns, please schedule a nutritional consult with Dr. Fichter.

June 2012 Clinic News

 Acupuncture Now Offered

We are pleased to welcome Laura Camas to our staff. Laura has an undergraduate degree in Women’s Health from Western Washington University. She is nationally board certified through the NCCAOM in Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine. She graduated from the Seattle Institute of Oriental Medicine in 2008 with a Master’s of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. Her training included apprentice-style teaching from Chinese and American Acupuncturists and doctors in a clinically based program. Laura has additional education in trigger point acupuncture for pain management.

Acupuncture can be used for preventative care, and for the treatment of both acute and chronic conditions. Many patients benefit from acupuncture for a wide range of ailments such as pain disorders, chronically tight muscles, anxiety/depression, sleep disorders, the common cold, gastrointestinal upset, and stress. Acupuncture is covered by most major insurance companies and Laura is a preferred provider with most health insurance companies including Premera, Asuris, Regence blue cross/blue shield, Cigna, Aetna, Group Health Options, United Health, First Choice Health and Providence Health Plan.

Nutritional Counseling with Dr. Dawn Fichter

Nutrition is a foundational building block for the body and today many of us are not eating enough variety or the right foods to sustain our body’s daily demands. Over time this depletes precious reserves and can create fatigue, toxicity and inflammation. Dr. Fichter will work with you to develop a personalized health regimen that will address specific needs by looking at your current health and daily diet. She will then determine if you can benefit from the addition of clinical whole food nutritional supplementation. By correcting imbalances with nutritional support, your body can begin to utilize the necessary nutrients needed to restore healthier function.

“I have spent the last ten years helping my patients restore their health with whole food supplementation. From digestive problems to chronic pain and fatigue, nutritional support is the answer for many people. I look forward to helping you achieve your health goals.” ~Dr. Dawn Fichter

For a limited time only, we are offering an Introductory Nutritional Consultation for $25 Schedule your appointment today!

Technology Coming Soon

Over the next few weeks we will be implementing a new electronic health record software system. You will notice that your paper chart will be replaced with a computerized system. This will not only enable us to more easily maintain your health record but it will allow us to communicate more effectively with your other healthcare practitioners. Please bear with us during this process as it may take a few extra minutes on your visit. We will also be collecting baseline information about your current medications, height, weight and blood pressure. This is something we will only need to do once and not on each subsequent visit. Our goal as always is to provide you with excellent and efficient service. Please let us know how we can better assist you.

New Auto-Remind Service

We can’t help you remember everything, but we can help you remember your next appointment in our office! This is a great new service that will allow us to remind you of your upcoming massage, chiropractic and/or acupuncture appointment via email, phone or text. Please let us know if you would like to take advantage of this new service by providing the front desk with the best contact number or email.

Water – The Best Health Supplement Ever!

The Single BEST Health Product on the Market

I rarely recommend health products. They are usually associated with the latest, greatest fads in trying to get your hard earned dollar in exchange for a fast-track to better health.

But what if I told you that there is a new health drink on the market that improves your energy levels, slows the aging process, helps prevent weight gain, and significantly reduces your risk of developing cancer? How much would you pay?

What if I told you that this same beverage makes you look and feel younger, helps digestion, improves mental clarity, prevents disease and reduces joint pain and stiffness? Now how much would you pay?

Now, what if I told you that it isn’t new and it doesn’t cost a thing. It’s already in your house and you can have all you want…Sounds too good to be true? Well, it’s the only health ‘product’ that I can unconditionally recommend. I recommend it for EVERYONE. Regardless of age, size, health condition or economic status, there is not a single person on the planet that cannot benefit from what it has to offer: Its water.

It sounds kind of silly when we look at the marketing properties of something as prevalent and simple as water. When we have an abundance of something, we have a tendency to take it for granted. But if water was presented to us as a new product on the market, think of all the great things we could say about it.

Water Helps Your Brain: Your brain is composed of nearly 75% water. A drop of just 2% in body water causes short term memory problems and significant difficulties with concentration. Good hydration helps you become mentally alert throughout the day.
Water Keeps You Thin: Your brain can easily confuse hunger with thirst. Instead of drinking water, we eat. Water suppresses the appetite naturally and helps the body metabolize stored fat.

Water Helps Digestion: Constipation is one of the biggest symptoms of dehydration. Without enough water, your food doesn’t move properly through your digestive tract and it to get plugged up. Water also aids in the transport of the nutrients out of our food and into our cells.

Water Fights ‘The Big C’: Drinking enough water daily decreases the risk of developing colon cancer by 45%, slashes the risk of breast cancer by 79%, and one is 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer.

Water Keeps You Limber: Our muscles are approximately 60% water. Our joints are lubricated by water. When we don’t drink enough water we crust up and our muscles become like beef jerky.

Water Keeps You Young: Much of our aging process has to do with inflammation and tissue destruction. Drinking water helps our bodies natural repair process and adequate hydration makes it possible for water to move through all the membranes of your body so that the largest organ in the body, the skin, is adequately hydrated.

If you didn’t get the message about drinking water in Session 3, please review it again and start drinking more water today!
Water means the difference between good health and disease. Consider some of the benefits.

Good Hydration Cuts the Risk of Disease
Research studies show that good hydration cuts the risk of breast cancer by 79%, reduces the risk of colon cancer by 45% and slashes the risk of bladder cancer by 50%.
Good Hydration Enhances Mental Clarity
A drop of just 2% in body water causes short term memory problems and significant difficulties with concentration. Good hydration helps you become mentally alert throughout the day.
Good Hydration Improves Digestion
A digestive system without sufficient fluid is constipated. Fluid is essential for nutrients to pass through the delicate membranes of the intestines. If the body is adequately hydrated sufficient fluid is present in the digestive track to distribute nutrients throughout the body.
Good Hydration Softens Skin Texture
Adequate hydration makes it possible for water to move through all the membranes of your body so that the largest organ in the body, the skin, is adequately hydrated.
Skin texture softens. The natural aging process is slowed. Wrinkles vanish. Bagging skin tightens.
Why bother to go through the pain of a face lift when giving your body water is a safe, natural and effective alternative with no complications?
Good Hydration Slows the Aging Process
The reason for poor hydration as we age is the gradual decline of the thirst mechanism in the brain. When we are young and get thirsty there is no stopping us when we are thirsty.
A different story emerges as we age. The thirst signal becomes distorted because we ignore it and because we drink dehydrating drinks such as coffee or alcohol.
Good hydration lowers the surface tension of the water that is ingested and reduces the cluster size of its molecules. Wetting capacity is increased, making water more readily available for transport to each and every cell of the body.
Good Hydration Relieves Back and Joint Pain
A little known fact is that adequate hydration has been shown to relieve back and joint pain for as many as 80% of sufferers.
Good Hydration Helps Control Body Weight
For many people the thirst mechanism in the body is so weak that it is mistaken for hunger in one third of Americans. Instead of drinking water we eat.
Adequate hydration resets the thirst mechanism in the brain so that hunger is not confused with thirst. The obvious benefit is a subsequent loss of excess weight that is caused by eating too much food.
In summary, what are the mind-boggling benefits of good hydration?
* We look and feel younger.
* Mental clarity gets a welcome boost.
* Our digestive system sends nutrients to each cell
* Weight control is restored.
* Ability to handle stress is enhanced.
* Pain from aching joints is reduced.
* Overall flexibility is restored.
All systems in the body function at their peak potential with good hydration. Sound too good to be true?
It is not. As simple minded as it may sound, water is the secret to good health.
Robert Rodgers Ph.D. believes that the body knows how to heal itself. It just needs a little help sometimes. Extensive information on natural and homeopathic remedies for dehydration can be found at
Article Source:

Thirst can be a poor way of monitoring of your water needs. You can lose your thirst sensation and the critical perception of needing water. No longer recognizing a water need (unless very dehydrated), you can become gradually, increasingly, and chronically dehydrated with increasing age. A “dry mouth” may be a late sign of dehydration.

Please note that it is extremely important to obtain an accurate diagnosis before trying to find a cure. Many diseases and conditions share common symptoms: if you treat yourself for the wrong illness or a specific symptom of a complex disease, you may delay legitimate treatment of a serious underlying problem. In other words, the greatest danger in self-treatment may be self-diagnosis. If you do not know what you really have, you can not treat it!

Knowing how difficult it is to weed out misinformation and piece together countless facts in order to see the “big picture”, we now provide simple online access to The Analyst™. Used by doctors and patients alike, The Analyst™ is a computerized diagnostic tool that sits on a vast accumulation of knowledge and research. By combining thousands of connections between signs, symptoms, risk factors, conditions and treatments, The Analyst™ will help to build an accurate picture of your current health status, the risks you are running and courses of action (including appropriate lab testing) that should be considered. Full information is available here.

Water has many functions in your body. Water:
• Transports vitamins, minerals, amino acids, glucose, hormones, enzymes and other substances throughout your body
• Assists chemical reactions such as the burning of glucose and the breakdown of fat for energy
• Carries digestive juices
• Lubricates joints, eyeballs, nasal passages, and the intestines
• Is a shock absorber for your eyes and spinal cord
• Maintains your body temperature – cools it by evaporation from the skin and lungs, throws off heat when blood is circulated near the body’s surface – helps retain warmth in winter
• Removes wastes through the kidneys and helps solid waste pass through the intestines
Here are some interesting facts:
• 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated. (This likely applies to half the world population)
• Even MILD dehydration will slow down one’s metabolism as much as 3%.
• One glass of water shut down midnight hunger pangs for almost 100% of the dieters studied in a University of Washington study.
• Lack of water is the #1 trigger of daytime fatigue.
• Preliminary research indicates that 8-10 glasses of water a day (half of that coming from food and drinks other than plain water) could significantly ease back and joint pain for up to 80% of sufferers.
• A mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on the computer screen or on a printed page.
• Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, the risk of breast cancer by 79%, and one is 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer. Are you drinking the amount of water you should every day?
Signs & Symptoms
Pain may be a warning of localized thirst; that is, the pain signal may be a warning of dehydration in that specific area (a regional thirst), for example low back pain, migraine headache, joint pain, and angina. Chronic dehydration may contribute to a reduction in lymph flow, which in turn may contribute to or cause varied problems.

Obvious signs of dehydration include: crinkled skin, dry mouth, excess thirst or absence of urination for over six hours.

Treatment & Prevention
It is a common error to substitute tea, coffee, caffeine-containing soft drinks, or alcohol-containing beverages for water. Do not consider alcoholic beverage, soda, coffee or tea as an equal substitute for water. Caffeine and alcohol act as diuretics, further increasing your water needs.

Remember that approximately half of your daily water intake comes from the food that you eat, so you only need to drink around half of your suggested requirement directly.

Calculate your overall daily need by taking your weight in kilograms (or your weight in pounds divided by 2), in ounces per day. For example, 140lbs / 2 = 70oz; 70oz / 8 = about 9 cups per day.

It is recommended by some that you not drink water with meals, unless you need to. Other doctors believe that the stomach needs a certain consistency to do its job and if we don’t drink enough with our meals the stomach pulls water from the blood stream; if we drink too much with our meals the excess water simply gets absorbed. The logical recommendation, therefore, is to try both and see what works best for you.

Good times to drink water are on rising, at least 1/2 hour before meals and 2-3 hours after, and before bed. You need more if the temperature is hot and if you exercise. A general rule is to add an extra 2 glasses per day for every 5°F over 85°F if you are at rest, and more if you exercise.

References & Further Information
We recommend that you read Your Body’s Many Cries for Water by Dr. Batmanghelidj, MD. It may be available from your local library. If purchased, you may be able to help others you think of while reading it!

“In my professional and scientific view, it is dehydration that is the biggest killer, more than any other condition you could imagine. The different aspects and ‘chemical idiosyncrasies’ of each individual’s body reaction to the same pattern of dehydration have received different professional labels and have been treated differently and ineffectively.” Dr. Batmanghelidj, MD.

Health Benefits of Water
How 8 Glasses a Day Keeps Fat Away
Incredible as it may seem, water is quite possibly the single most important catalyst in losing weight and keeping it off. Although most of us take for granted, water may be the only true “magic potion” for permanent weight loss.
Water supresses the appetite naturally and helps the body metabolize stored fat. Studies have shown that a decrease in water intake will cause fat deposits to increase, while an increase in water intake can actually reduce fat deposits.
Here’s why: The kidneys can’t function properly without enough water. When they don’t work to capacity, some of their load is dumped onto the liver. One of the liver’s primary functions is to metabolize stored fat into usable energy for the body. But if the liver has to do some of the kidney’s work it can’t operate at full throttle. As a result, it metabolizes less fat more fat remains stored in the body and weight loss stops.
Drinking enough water is the best treatment for fluid retention. When the body gets less water,it perceives this as a threat to survival and begins to hold on to every drop. Water is stored in extracellular spaces (outside the cell). This shows up as swollen feet, legs and hands.
Diuretics offer a temporary solution at best. They force out stored water along with some essential nutrients. Again, the body perceives a treat and will replace the lost water at the first opportunity. Thus, the condition quickly returns.
The best way to overcome the problem of water retention is to give your body what it needs — plenty of water. Only then will stored water be released.
If you have a constant problem with water retention, excess salt may be to blame. Your body will tolerate sodium only in a certain concentration. The more salt you eat the more water your system retains to dilute it.
But getting rid of unneeded salt is easy — just drink more water. As it’s forced through the kidneys it takes away excess sodium.
The overweight person needs more water than a thin one. Larger people have larger metabolic loads. Since we know that water is the key to fat metabolism, it follows that the over weight person needs more water.
Water helps to maintain proper muscle tone by giving muscles their natural ability to contract and by preventing dehydration. It also helps to prevent the sagging skin that usually follows weigh loss — shrinking cells are buoyed by water which plumps the skin and leaves it clear, healthy and resilient.
Water helps rid the body of waste. During weight loss, the body has a lot more waste to get rid of — all that metabolized fat must be shed. Again, adequate water helps flush out the waste.
Water can help relieve constipation. When the body gets too little water, it siphons what it needs from internal sources. The colon is one primary source. Result? Constipation. But when a person drinks enough water, normal bowel function usually returns.
So far, we’ve discovered some remarkable truths about water and weight loss:
• The body will not function properly without enough water and can’t metabolize stored fat efficiently.
• Retained water shows up as excess weight.
• To get rid of excess water you must drink more water.
• Drinking water is essential to weight loss.
How much water is enough? On the average, a person should drink eight 8-ounce glasses every day. That’s about 2 quarts. However, the overweight person needs one additional glass for every 25 pounds of excess weight. The amount you drink also should be increased if you exercise briskly or if the weather is hot and dry.
Water should preferably be cold. It’s absorbed into the system more quickly than warm water. And some evidence suggests that drinking cold water can actually help burn calories. To utilize water most efficiently during weight loss, follow this schedule:
Morning: 1 quart consumed over a 30-minute period.
Noon: 1 quart consumed over a 30-minute period.
Evening: 1 quart consumed between five and six o’clock.
When the body gets the water it needs to function optimally, it’s fluids are perfectly balanced. When this happens, you have reached the “breakthrough point.” What does this mean?
• Endocrine-gland function improves.
• Fluid retention is alleviated as stored water is lost.
• More fat is used as fuel because the liver is free to metabolize stored fat.
• Natural thirst returns.
• There is a loss of hunger almost over night.
If you stop drinking enough water, your body fluids will be thrown out of balance again, and you may experience fluid retention, unexplained weight gain and loss of thirst. To remedy the situation you’ll have to go back and force another “breakthrough.”

The health benefits of water are indisputable. Water in the body carries oxygen and nutrients to every cell and tissue in the body, regulates body temperature, flushes out toxins and helps keep the skin looking vibrant and younger.
In addition to plain water, there are many other fluid sources for the body too. These include commercially manufactured water, fruit juices, coffee, tea, soups, water-rich fruits and vegetables. But nothing beats the goodness of plain water.
Not sure how much water should be drunk each day? Well, most doctors and health experts commonly recommend drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water everyday. Here are some strategies to drink more water.
Start the Day with a Glass of Water
Try drinking a glass of hot water with a squeeze of fresh lime or lemon first thing in the morning. This gives the digestion a boost as well as giving the water a refreshing flavor.
Make Water Constantly Available
Keep water within reach at all times. Have a bottle of water on the office desk, in the car and on the side table in the bedroom. Those frequently on the move should also pack a small bottle of water in the handbag. If there are children in tow, make sure there are water bottles in their backpacks as well.

Spread Out Water Intake
Some people forget to drink regularly during the day and try to make it up by gulping down a few glasses of water at one go late in the evening. Avoid that. Spread out water intake throughout the day. Make it a point to drink in the morning, at noon, in the afternoon and evening or after each visit to the toilet.
Create a Water Intake Schedule
If remembering to drink more water is a real problem, create a water intake schedule. For instance, drink a glass of water first thing in the morning after waking up, after breakfast, before lunch, before dinner, and so on. Need more reminding? Try using the “Drink More Water” reminder tool downloadable from the WaterAid website. It’s a great tool for those who spend a great deal of time in front of the computer.
Have Water with Other Beverages
When eating out, those who just have to drink other beverages such as alcohol, coffee or tea should always order a glass of water as well. Try alternating the beverages with water as some of them can cause dehydration.
Adjust Temperatures of Drinking Water
On summer days, keep a jug or bottle of water in the refrigerator so that there is always chilled drinking water available. On cold winter days, drink warm plain water instead of hot coffee or tea to keep warm.
Keeping the body hydrated is easy. To drink more water everyday, make water constantly available, spread out water intake throughout the day, create a water intake schedule, have water with other beverages and adjust the temperatures of drinking water accordingly.

Read more at Suite101: How to Drink More Water: Tips to Keep the Body Hydrated
Water: How much should you drink every day?
Factors that influence water needs
You may need to modify your total fluid intake depending on how active you are, the climate you live in, your health status, and if you’re pregnant or breast-feeding.
• Exercise. If you exercise or engage in any activity that makes you sweat, you need to drink extra water to compensate for the fluid loss. An extra 400 to 600 milliliters (about 1.5 to 2.5 cups) of water should suffice for short bouts of exercise, but intense exercise lasting more than an hour (for example, running a marathon) requires more fluid intake. How much additional fluid you need depends on how much you sweat during exercise, the duration of your exercise and the type of activity you’re engaged in.
During long bouts of intense exercise, it’s best to use a sports drink that contains sodium, as this will help replace sodium lost in sweat and reduce the chances of developing hyponatremia, which can be life-threatening. Also, continue to replace fluids after you’re finished exercising.
• Environment. Hot or humid weather can make you sweat and requires additional intake of fluid. Heated indoor air also can cause your skin to lose moisture during wintertime. Further, altitudes greater than 8,200 feet (2,500 meters) may trigger increased urination and more rapid breathing, which use up more of your fluid reserves.
• Illnesses or health conditions. Signs of illnesses, such as fever, vomiting and diarrhea, cause your body to lose additional fluids. In these cases you should drink more water and may even need oral rehydration solutions, such as Gatorade, Powerade or CeraLyte. Also, you may need increased fluid intake if you develop certain conditions, including bladder infections or urinary tract stones. On the other hand, some conditions such as heart failure and some types of kidney, liver and adrenal diseases may impair excretion of water and even require that you limit your fluid intake.
• Pregnancy or breast-feeding. Women who are expecting or breast-feeding need additional fluids to stay hydrated. Large amounts of fluid are used especially when nursing. The Institute of Medicine recommends that pregnant women drink 2.3 liters (about 10 cups) of fluids daily and women who breast-feed consume 3.1 liters (about 13 cups) of fluids a day.

Beyond the tap: Other sources of water
Although it’s a great idea to keep water within reach at all times, you don’t need to rely only on what you drink to satisfy your fluid needs. What you eat also provides a significant portion of your fluid needs. On average, food provides about 20 percent of total water intake, while the remaining 80 percent comes from water and beverages of all kinds.
For example, many fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon and tomatoes, are 90 percent to 100 percent water by weight. Beverages such as milk and juice also are composed mostly of water. Even beer, wine and caffeinated beverages — such as coffee, tea or soda — can contribute, but these should not be a major portion of your daily total fluid intake. Water is one of your best bets because it’s calorie-free, inexpensive and readily available.

Staying safely hydrated
It’s generally not a good idea to use thirst alone as a guide for when to drink. By the time you become thirsty, it’s possible to already be slightly dehydrated. Further, be aware that as you get older your body is less able to sense dehydration and send your brain signals of thirst. Excessive thirst and increased urination can be signs of a more serious medical condition.
Talk to your doctor if you experience either.
To ward off dehydration and make sure your body has the fluids it needs, make water your beverage of choice. Nearly every healthy adult can consider the following:
• Drink a glass of water with each meal and between each meal.
• Hydrate before, during and after exercise.
• Substitute sparkling water for alcoholic drinks at social gatherings.
If you drink water from a bottle, thoroughly clean or replace the bottle often.
Though uncommon, it is possible to drink too much water. When your kidneys are unable to excrete the excess water, the electrolyte (mineral) content of the blood is diluted, resulting in low sodium levels in the blood, a condition called hyponatremia. Endurance athletes, such as marathon runners, who drink large amounts of water are at higher risk of hyponatremia. In general, though, drinking too much water is rare in healthy adults who consume an average American diet.

If you’re concerned about your fluid intake, check with your doctor or a registered dietitian. He or she can help you determine the amount of water that’s best for you.

Weight Management

Wolf Chiropractic & Massage

Weight Management

It All Adds Up
For some of you, this is a topic that won’t apply. We’re going to talk about the dreaded issue of Weight Management. For you select few that are naturally thin and can eat whatever you want without gaining an ounce, we all hate you. (just kidding)… For the rest of us that are not so fortunate, we know that this is a battle that we wage on a daily basis. (No, we’re not kidding, we really hate you). Weight management is all about the math, which we will discuss in future weeks, but for now, we need to lick our wounds and talk about past failures, so we can leave them behind once and for all.

We Know What Doesn’t Work
Any of us that are all too familiar with trying to lose weight could probably teach a class on what NOT to do. We can list the things that have not worked. Many times, what ever weight we lost, somehow finds us again. And sometimes it comes back with a little extra that we didn’t have in the first place.

If we think about all that has gone wrong in the past, we can narrow it down to one problem: We are not patient people and we want the weight gone, now. It just doesn’t work that way. There are ways to try to cut corners, but we know they don’t work. The promises of fast and easy weight loss don’t work. The gimmicks and fad diets, no matter how much money we spend on them, don’t work.

What Is the Secret?
It’s no secret. It’s just not fun. Nor is it easy. To really take control of your weight, you need to change two things: your mindset and your behavior.

Process vs. Event
This is the shift in mindset. We talked about it on week one. We may think that we gained those extra 10 pounds all at once, but we didn’t. We gained them one pound at a time. A process. So why do we treat weight loss like an event? It took months and years to accumulate the extra weight, why do we keep telling ourselves that we can reverse the process in a matter of days or weeks? We’ve lost our common sense about weight loss, and in doing so, we’ve spent billions of dollars on the latest, greatest diet revolution. And the only thing that’s thinner is our wallets.

There’s nothing confusing about weight gain. We know exactly how it happened. We can make excuses and kid ourselves about our genetics, our stress, our ‘whatevers’. But pretty much the only way to gain weight is to eat more energy than your body needs. The rest is stored for future use. How we gain weight is a simple, predicatable process. So, why do make weight loss so confusing, complex and frustrating? We didn’t buy a kit or a program to make ourselves gain weight, why then do we think we need those things to lose weight? We’ll talk more about this next week, but in the meantime, I want you to take a few minutes and write a list of what behaviors that made you heavier than you’d like to be. Be honest with yourself. Next to each behavior, give yourself a VERB to correct it. A “go do it” statement to yourself to correct it or make better, Here’s an example of how to start a list. Everyone’s list will look a little different:

Behavior “Go Do It”
I eat fast food every day at lunch I will pack a nutritious lunch from home
I never drink water I will sip water throughout the day.

Go ahead, make your own list and get started! We’ll have more information for you next week.