Friday, August 27, 2004

And you thought aerobics, pilates and tai chi are the only exercises

And you thought aerobics, pilates and tai chi are the only exercises to keep you healthy?

Here are things you have to keep in mind about exercises:

1. Aim to have at least 60 minutes a day of activity.

2. The rule of thumb is to have at least 3 types of activities to keep your system healthy:

a. endurance - helps your heart, lungs and circulatory systems stay healthy and give you more energy. It includes walking, dancing, tennis, gardening, golfing, cycling. Ideally, you want to be able to carry on a conversation as you are exercising.

b. Flexibility - helps you to move easily, keeping your muscles relaxed and your joints mobile. This is where your bending and stretching comes in. Examples of these are stretching exercises, T’ai Chi, yoga, curling, bowling, gardening

c. strength - Activities help your muscles and bones stay strong, improve your posture and help to prevent diseases like osteoporosis. Strength activities are those that make you work your muscles against some kind of resistance, like when you push or pull hard to open a heavy door. Make sure you do a combination of activities that exercise the muscles in your arms, mid-section, and legs. Strive for a good balance-upper body, lower body, right and left sides and opposing muscle groups. Examples of these are weightlifting, raking and carrying leaves, climbing stars, exercises like abdominal curls and push-ups.

When you think of doing an exercise for the whole 60 minutes at once, chances are you'd be pooped before you even did the initial 10 minutes. To achieve the 60 minute goal..try to go for a 15 minute walk in the morning, 15 at mid day and 15 after dinner. Do some stretching when you wake up, keep those muscles stretched before you start your day. You should also increase your effort and have a variety of activities as you progress.

The best time to exercise is one hour after eating. After meals, your blood sugar levels peak and your aim there is to bring that blood sugar down or burn the energy that you just added to your system.

Try going around the block for 10 minutes and then increase your walking by adding another block each day. Make sure that you sway your arms to incorporate flexibility and strength in your walk.

Some women have expressed their fears that weightlifting makes their arms look muscly and ugly. Did you know that it is the muscles that burn the fat? You need not be lifting 50 lb weights to satisfy this requirement..all you need is a consistent 5 lb lift to develop those muscles to burn those fat and tone your sagging (ouch) skin.

So do some bending by picking up those clutters in your living room..lifting by carrying those grocery bags from the grocery store and taking the stairs instead of the elevator when going up to your office next time.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Since when did having coke become healthier than having a pear fruit?

Since when did having coke become healthier than having a pear fruit? (I'll tell you tomorrow as long as you promise you'll be back..)

Thanks for the patience. Bayi you hit it right. Perfect score!! For sure, once you look at the person next to you, you will be trying to determine whether he/she has a diabetes or not.(Laughing out loud)
Okey, here we go:

It’s when you look at the mirror and you either get a coca-cola shape (not in cans)or a pear shape, or it can be in between. According to our community nurse, usually if your body is pear shaped, it is an indication of diabetes or the onset of it. How do you fall into this shape? There are many reasons why. It could be because of your genes but one of the most common reasons is toxic stress. You see it’s okay to go through stress once in a while. Our body needs it. However, it is when your stress becomes uncontrollable that it literally poisons your anatomy. It could lead you to raging appetite. Why so? We have this element in our body called the cortisol which has a major role of refueling our body after each stress episode. Once our stress becomes uncontrollable, this cortisol induces stress eating and weight gain. This fat settles primarily in our abdomen.

One thing we have to remember is our metabolism declines at the rate of at least 5% for every ten years of our life starting when we reach the age of twenty when everything settles (i.e. your height, build, etc.). So if we required about 2500 calories per day at twenty, by the time we reached forty, we could have required 250 calories less each day. So for every 250 extra calories we eat per day when we are forty, we know this will just go to our reserves which we simply call FAT. I don’t know how to simplify this further..maybe Dr. Emer could help.

Bottom line is take stress out of your life as possibly as you can. I have developed the ability to compartmentalize my life..adapted the truth that there is time for everything. I have stopped bringing work problems at home and vice versa. They also say that at least plan to travel at least once a year. Now I am getting stressed out thinking of where to get the moolah for travelling ..haha. Don’t worry be happy..HAKUNA MATATA!!!

Last time I checked Doc Emer's, he was being stressed out with the flooding in Manila. I hope his stress is just temporary and will not develop into a toxic stress. Delikado yan.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

Use your hands not your head for once....eerr..all the time!

Wait, you don't have to be a diabetic to know this. For some, estimating how much to eat is just too cumbersome, it discourages the hell out of them even just to give it a try. Others feel that when you say that they have to watch what they eat, they shun from you thinking you’re a diet freak and you’re sending them the message not to eat this or not to eat that.

The truth is I was like them too. I felt like I was going to deprive myself of all the best food in this world even before knowing what it actually meant to watch what I eat. When I was told that the required daily carbohydrates intake was 30-40 gms. I just went ballistic about it. Just how big is 40 gms of carbohydrates? I can’t be carrying my measuring cups and spoons with me all the time?

My dietician, having ran the day care every week for xxx years understood our predicament and in fact had a ready answer for us.

We know that we should balance our daily food intake bearing in mind that we should have starch, protein, vegetables, calcium, fat and fruits. In fact, we can eat anything we want but it always has to be in…MODERATION. In Philippine setting, this is not impossible to do. Chopsuey with meat and Rice is already having your veggies, protein, calcium and carbohydrates in one. The fat is possibly in the chopsuey too. It's no different in having pinakbet for dinner.

The pictures above serve as your guide in determining how much you eat at your main meal.

How much fat? The added fat should not be more than the end your thumb (example: or about 1-2 teaspoons of oil). This includes fat added during cooking as well as the table.

How much calcium? For a serving, have a half cup to one cup of milk or yogurt, bowlful of vegetable like cabbage, or a thumbsize amount of solid food like cheese, nuts or tofu.

How many vegetables? Include a fruit with breakfast; include 2 or more vegetables at lunch and dinner and fruit if you’d like ; and choose a fruit or vegetable for a snack. Hold your two hands together and overfill them with vegetables and fruits and you will have a good daily amount.

How much protein? Size of the palm of your hand for your main meal. For women, this usually means 3-5 oz of cooked meat or other protein and for men, about 4-7 oz. Smaller portions at other meals.

How much starch? Have a starch food with every meal. Size of your fist for your main meal.

There you have it. I hope I did not bore you. Use your hands not your head (wink)

Friday, August 20, 2004

What can I serve you with, water or juice?

Juice is good but nothing beats water to quench your thirst and to flush those unwanted organisms in your system. A person in my support group found out he had diabetes just by drinking juice. He had difficulty urinating and had a terrible stomach pain one day. He thought it was nothing serious and started drinking cranberry juice to induce his urination. Little did he know that he was already nursing a serious gall bladder infection and by drinking juice he was aggravating his situation without him knowing.

By drinking cranberry juice, he was increasing his blood sugar thereby putting pressure to his pancreas to produce the necessary insulin to send the “cranberry energy” to the various organs of his body responsible in releasing the antibodies to fight his infection. Phew, that was a mouthful! But what I simply meant was these organs are all interrelated and the breakdown of one causes the rest to breakdown too. This is why we have the term “complications”.

I thought fruit juices are alright, you say. And I say you are right, except that they have to be taken in moderation. Fruit juice even if made purely out of fruits may contain lots of sugar. One glass of orange juice is equivalent to 3 to 5 pieces of medium orange. A medium orange is equivalent to 10 grams of carbohydrates. Here I go again.

It is always nice to substitute juice with water. Your daily water requirement is about 8-10 glasses a day. You will know that you’re drinking the required amount daily, if your urine is almost as clear as water. I said almost, not “as clear as water” because too much water can also lead to water intoxication. Next time you pee, make sure it isn’t as yellow as your orange juice.

It is also better to drink your water ice cold rather than warm. I did wonder about this, but I was told that cold requires more energy to bring it to the right temperature, thus burning more energy in the process. Juice or water?

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

One of my office mates is leaving us. We had this for lunch today. Very healthy..we had a pice of bun(starch, our veggies, and a piece of meatloaf(protein). Actually, yung ice cream di pa nalabas from the fridge..hehe. Noong araw di ako sanay sa ganitong serving..pilipino yata eto ano. doblehin mo yan at dagdagan pa yung meat..ganoon ang secret ko kung bakit ako na diabetes..sabay ng "where's the rice?". meron pa kaming isang kalokohan noon. pag inimbita kami ng dati kong boss, kakain muna kami sa bahay kaming mag-anak kasi tiyak yan, isang pakpak lang o hita ng manok ang ipapakain sa isip-isip naming mag-asawa.."inang ko gutom ang aabutin natin nito bago matapos ang party" kaya diretso kami sa McDo o Kentucky pagkatapos..pero sanayan lang talaga. yung meat loaf luto ko yan, bugbog ng carrots kasi yan ang mura (haha)..ako ang chef sa office pag ka may ganitong okasyon..sasabihin ng aming office manager kung anong menu. gusto ko na rin kasi kung minsan, medyo bland ang panlasa ng puti

Just my feet!!

Besides your heart, one of the most important parts of your body that is often neglected and least likely looked after is your feet. In one of my day care sessions surprisingly, half of the day was dedicated to taking care of your feet. I went huh, it’s just my feet! Say that again, please?

We should love our feet just as we love our heart. They are the ones responsible in taking us around. They are the ones responsible in leading us to things that our hearts value and our eyes appreciate.

Pamper your feet. Give it the best footwear you can get, the most comfy ones—never mind the fashion for when you get old there’d be no turning back to say , “Darn, my calluses are killing me.” Wash them often and apply lotion to your heels more than you apply lotion to your legs.

A more serious reason why you should take care of your feet is they are prone to gangrene. Gangrene is the death of an area of your body due to loss of blood supply. If you are diabetic, the more you should worry about this because of the poor circulation of your blood to your extremities.

One of the men in my support group played soccer one day. He did just fine during the game. After the game, he looked for his car keys and couldn’t find them. He decided to take off his socks outside of his car and there he found his toes bleeding and his socks soaked in blood and his car keys too. That Bad! My sister in law was gardening one day and stubbed her toe with a gardening tool. Pus was coming out of her wound in the ensuing days and in ten days was hospitalized for tetanus. She did not feel pain in her wound but her jaws gave it away. In her case, the infection got full of pus and did not drain well, blocking off the blood supply and the oxygen to that part of her body. She is diabetic too.

Treatment with antibiotics is usually the thing to do and removing the dead tissue does the trick but sometimes it could result to amputation. Ouch!

So the next time you stub your toes with even just a simple speck, disinfect it right away and keep that wound clean to prevent it from turning into gangrene. Your best weapon against gangrene is prevention.

The next time you say, they’re just my feet, think again.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

When small makes a big difference..

This is in relation to my having diabetes and how I am taking steps to prevent it from becoming a full blown complication.

I know what you mean when you know you want to make changes and getting started always seem to be the hardest part. You might actually find that it is easy when you look back later on. Say for example, you might not realize that you are eating more than what you're supposed to have, right now. Remember, the extra in the "more" becomes fat?

Well, first of, you cannot bring your blood sugar down unless you bring down all the numbers first..your weight, your blood pressure, albumin count, cholesterol count and all the counts you have in your medical record. Damn, just when you thought higher is better huh. You need to lose weight to bring down your sugar. To lose weight, you have to eat less and exercise more..yeah, yeah, yeah, you've heard about this for the ..nth time you say.

How about changing your eating habits this week to start with? It is a natural reaction for people to expect results at the flick of a finger but remember that when you have this attitude, you will only reap the "dises" in life..discontentment..discouragement and dis..and that. Okey, why don't we start with the littlest step..

From using that big plate, why not grab a medium one. Even in that there is already a difference. Big plate..more food..medium plate..smaller amount of food compared to the big plate. Try it. If it used to take you 15 minutes to chew what was in your big plate, how about eating slowly and enjoying your smaller amount of food by chewing slowly, extending your eating time to 15 minutes? Do this for about a month and then think of getting yet a smaller plate than the medium one and do the same steps until you've arrived at the recommended amount of food to take in every meal. It might take me a month to blog about the recommended amount of food to eat but remember you're just starting? To give you an idea, visit Doc Emer's site. Well by the time you're ready to evaluate your food intake, i'll probably have a better list for you.

Next, go around your house for 5 minutes half an hour after you've eaten. Well, what can five minutes do? You don't want to overwhelm yourself right? Keep on doing this for a month and then increase it to 10 minutes. How about around the block next time. What you're trying to do is to get used to a routine first. Hahanapin rin ng katawan mo yan in the long run.

Have fun with with your medium plate!!

Now I am blogging!!!

For sometime I've been enjoying bloghopping. In my mind I wasn't interested in having my own. For one thing, I do not have the luxury of time to create my own blog. First, I am a full time employee and then a full time mom and then a full time wife.

However, in my bloghopping, I came across sites that interested me, one is turo ni tito where wisdom was shared and Doc Emer where health is the talk of the day. There were some other interesting sites, some were funny that just made my day, some made me salivate until I actually had the chance to test their recipes myself and some so, so...

I reached a point where I could no longer resist commenting and when I did at one point, I got invited by Doc Emer. The invites were not working so I thought I'd save all these first and e-mail them to him for posting later on. Well, maybe I should just save them to a blog and so the birth of my blog.

When I created my site, it seemed that all names were taken(daming nagblo-blog). I had to settle for this one, simple and easier to remember. Besides it was the only one available.