Monday, March 27, 2017

From Ribs to No Ribs: Transition Areas of the Spine

     There are two areas of transition in our spine, one at the base of our rib cage and one at the top of it. They are called “transition” areas because they are where attachment of the ribs begin at the lower and upper borders of the rib cage. 
     These are often trouble spots because they are “transitions” from regions of comparatively less mobility to ones of comparatively more mobility. For example, in the low back, the lumbar region, where no ribs attach, is comparatively more mobile than the thoracic region, where, from T12 and up, ribs attach on each side at each vertebral level. 
     Similarly, where ribs cease to attach in the upper back, around T2 & T1, there is a transition to the cervical, comparatively more mobile, region. 
     These transition areas are more vulnerable to biomechanical stresses, and can be recurring trouble spots for some people.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Let's Hear It For Purple Foods!

     Did you know that color of most vegetables is a clue to the kind(s) & how many nutrients they contain?
     Purple vegetables often carry more nutritional “punch.” For example, purple carrots have more powerful antioxidants than the beta carotene in orange carrots. Deep purple beets are more nutritious than yellow or multicolored beets, such as Chiaogia. 
     Purple sweet potatoes, though sometimes hard to find, are richer in antioxidants than other sweet potatoes.
     Intensely purple cauliflower, which existed before the white kind we most often see today, has 2 & 1/2 more times antioxidants than the white. Purple cabbage is very nutritious, and packs 6 times more antioxidants than green cabbage! 

Monday, March 13, 2017

What Causes Scoliosis?

     Abnormal spinal curves develop for reasons that are largely unknown. Although there are several theories, about 80% of scoliosis is considered idiopathic (of unknown cause). 
     Statistically, about 4 adolescent girls in 1000 may develop it, and about 1 in 2500 boys. Roughly 2% of the adult population has some degree of it. 
     In my practice, I have found, in working with several adolescent girls, that a combination of stabilizing the pelvis & focused exercises can reverse or halt the progress of scoliotic curvatures. 

Monday, March 6, 2017

Conservation Comes Home

We can all help monarch butterflies, bees, and other endangered pollinators by planting food gardens, even tiny ones, in our yards. If you live in an apartment, put them in pots, or in community garden plots. Street medians can be planted with pollinator gardens, with support of city councils and volunteers. Support chemical-free pest control, at home and in your town. Go here for some helpful advice from The Xerces Society: