Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Should You Become A Vegetarian Or Vegan?

Patients sometimes ask me if a vegetarian or vegan diet would be healthier for them.  I prescribe to the Chinese principles of nutrition:  each person has their own individual nutritional needs and we should all eat according to the seasons.  A vegetarian or vegan diet is a person's own choice and if this is the type of lifestyle one chooses, then I have no issue with it as long as that person is ingesting all the nutrients necessary on a daily basis for good health. 
Here's Your Healthy Tip of the Day:  If you are considering a vegetarian or vegan diet, remember that too many saturated fats and sugars (eggs, cheese, fruits, french fries) can be unhealthy for you.  Preservatives and artificial ingredients added to soy products aren't healthy choices.  Choose wisely.  Whole grains, foods high in vitamin B12, antioxidants, low in saturated fat, trans fat and sodium are all heart healthy and can be delicious as well.  If you're not sure what food choices are good for you, hire a nutritionist who specializes in vegetarian and/or vegan dietary needs.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Altered States...A Wheelchair Experience

I took a sejour to Southern Florida to get off my feet for five days and recuperate from knee surgery; a much needed rest for swelling in the joint that doesn't subside when you're on your feet 12 to 15 hours per day at the office.  While there, my friend had VIP tickets to an auto race that she particularly wanted to attend, but I couldn't possibly go with her in my condition.  Solution?  Rent a wheelchair.  So, off we went - wheelchair bungy corded to the back of her Porsche...nothing stops two determined women with VIP passes!  I've always been very respectful when encountering anyone in a wheelchair but being the person IN the chair is a completely different experience and quite an eye opener.  I was amazed how the masses of people couldn't have been nice and more helpful as my friend wheeled me all over the facility throughout the entire day.  At one point, all the attendees were permitted onto the track prior to the days' races.  Wherever we went, we were like Moses parting the Dead Sea - a 'lane' was parted so we could wheel as we would past all the race cars - it was truly amazing!  I hope I never need to be in a wheelchair again; I prefer to stand and walk on my own two legs, but this was an invaluable life experience and one I will not forget.

Here's Your Healthy Tip of the Day:  If you already aware of the disabled, think twice the next time you see someone who is on crutches or in a wheelchair.  Just by giving them the right of way or asking if they need assistance can mean so much to them and you are certainly paying it forward.  You never know if you might be that person in the chair one of these days.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Crippled In Penn Station...The Twilight Zone

Here's Your Healthy Tip of the Day:  If you are on crutches, in a wheelchair or using a cane...you don't want to be in Penn Station at night on the weekend.  I happened to arrive into the station at  10:30pm last Saturday evening.  The crew and passengers disembarked the train and scurried off and up the flight of stairs to wherever it was they were going.  I was left to look for the 'elevator' sign.  There wasn't a Penn Station employee or policeman in sight - not on my track, nor in the entire area.  I walked as far as I could along the desolate platform with my cane.  I wasn't feeling safe; I am a seasoned martial artist and I was feeling more like a deer in the African tundra - food for the lions.  I made the executive decision to  ascend the flight of stairs - exactly what I am NOT supposed to be doing with a swollen knee joint post surgery and another knee on it's way down the drain.  Upon reaching the top of the stairs, I realized I was then on another level of tracks...no signs, no train personnel, no policemen - not a soul in sight to assist me in finding my way to an elevator to get to the concourse level.  After walking for a spell, I sighted an amputee who also had an arm in a cast/sling reading his Koran in a tiny alcove.  I hobbled over to him and said 'Brother, can you please help me?  I need to find an  elevator up to the concourse area.'  The man saw I was in obvious pain.  He got out of his wheelchair and hobbled with his cane on one leg to show me where the elevator was, wished me God's peace, and went back to his chair.  I also wished him God's peace and made my way in the direction he pointed.   He was the only human in sight on that track level.  I got into the elevator, took it up to the concourse level, where I took another elevator to the street and got a taxi home.  All that walking around searching for a way out, walking up the stairs - it all set me back a good 3 days in my progress to heal from knee surgery.  It took an amputee and his kindness to get out of his wheelchair to help me...may God smile on him.  What he was doing there, who knows?  Maybe he was there for me...it was like being in the Twilight Zone.
The management of Penn Station should be ashamed of themselves.  The station is rape, robbery and mugging material for anyone who is disabled in any way.  The place is desolate and a disgrace.  I thought to write to the management, but I didn't think my letter would get anywhere.  Maybe this blog will go viral and it will reach the eyes and ears of those who can make a difference for the safety of the disabled and solo passengers who have to use their transit system late in the evening. That's all I have to say about it.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Body Mass Calculation

Here's Your Healthy Tip of the Day:  Scroll down this blog and you will find a box where you can determine your BMI for free!  Even better...there are always tips and offers every week on this blog for vacations, products and discounts on various other services.  Subscribe today...it doesn't cost you anything but a few seconds each week to check out a healthy tip and maybe a good deal to go with a good piece of advice!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Two Steps Forward, One Step Backward

Yesterday, it snowed...again.  Not so bad; just a smattering of the white stuff on the ground, but just enough to cause major trouble.  Feeling good after a morning swim, I set out on my crutches to do a few needed errands before going to my office.  Unfortunately, the fire dept. blocked off Wall Street and I was forced to walk down Exchange Place.  The street is a downward slope and, unlike Wall St, it was not shoveled or salted.  I slid out from under the crutches and only for a quick-minded/quick-acting gentleman, did I not fall.  The poor fellow told me he had broken both legs during a ski accident 4 years ago and 'what was I doing out here in the snow?' 'Going to work like everyone else' was the answer.  I had my escort down the street, but the slide caused me to hyperextend the injured leg - hence, swelling, pain and a setback after feeling good for a few hours.  That's when I decided to take the advice of my colleagues and make plans to get myself out of town for a few days, get off my feet and recuperate properly.  Doctor, heal thyself....
Here's Your Healthy Tip of the Day:  If you have an injury and you're going through rehab, pay attention to what you eat, how much you sleep, and if you can - take some time off to heal.  Two steps forward only to take one step doubles the time it will take to completely recover....lesson learned by the pot sending the message out to all the kettles out there!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Taking The Weight Off And Acupuncture For Knee Pain

Here's Your Healthy Tip of the Day:  If you have osteoarthritis of the knees or any type of knee pain and you are more than 5 pounds overweight - get yourself on a weight reduction program today!  Every extra pound you carry adds 3 pounds of excess on each knee...do the math.  Ten (10) pounds of excess weight means your knees are holding 60 pounds more than they should every moment of every day.  This added stress can result in degeneration of tissue and can be the cause of falls and other maladies that can result in surgery or knee replacement.  Acupuncture, a healthy eating plan and exercise regime can help relieve knee pain and stave off surgery.  There is a very big reason why most insurance companies will cover the treatment of acupuncture for knee pain.  Don't suffer...call or email the office today!  917-701-7582   k@mondesire.com

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Doctor Heal Thyself

Here's Your Healthy Tip of the Day:  Well, here I go again.  Four years after the first arthroscopic knee surgery, I've had another, more invasive surgery on the same knee...just buying time until there's nothing left and I've got to replace the joint; but until they tell me they've got a bionic part for me so I can leap the tallest buildings in a single bound, I'll do the best I can with what I've got left.  That being said, I've got six weeks of physical therapy ahead of me and some life style changes to make during those six weeks.  Since I've already been through this experience, I know where I made my mistakes over the past four years and why I've landed in the same situation again.  For starters, no pityparty!  I've the green light yesterday to get into the pool, so I'm charging up my waterproof ipod and it's into the pool with me today to begin walking and then do some upper body workout with the pull buoy between my legs.  I might only last 15 minutes, but it's a start!  Second, I've gone back online to "Lose It" - the FREE online app where you can count your daily/weekly calories and track your exercise regimes.  Excess weight is just terrible for the knees, so I will lead by example and I've got a goal of 10lbs to lose by April 1st.  Planning my meals and weighing my foods helps tremendously.  I have helped many a patient lose 50lbs or more, so I should be able to help my own fat self.  Third, I'll be receiving acupuncture from my mentor (sorry folks - you don't get to stick me), doing my physical therapy and doing what my therapist tells me to do - stay on the crutches, keep the leg up and don't go out in the snow on the crutches.  Fourth, I'll be changing my mental attitude and setting new lifestyle goals.  Unfortunately, I cannot kid myself anymore.  There will be no more jumping rope, running or kicking bags or people for fun.....what a drag....BUT, there will be swimming, spinning, some boxing, conditioning, and just maybe......some tennis down the road one of these days.  I still don't count golf as anything other than a lovely day outdoors.  So, stay tuned for more news and if you are rehabbing from your own surgery or injury, please feel free to comment or post with your own progress or questions, funny stories or observations.  There's safety in numbers.  Doctor Heal Thyself....JUST YOU WAIT AND WATCH WHAT I CAN REALLY DO!!!