All About Your Health and Apex, NC

Discover interesting health tips and happenings in our favorite town of Apex, NC

Snack Time!

Most people enjoy a good snack (or few) every day. They’re great – they can help you make it through a mid-morning – or afternoon! – slump. They work to ensure you don’t end up ravenously hungry and overeating at your next meal. A snack can also give you energy to stay focused while you’re at work or out and about running errands.

Unfortunately, most people select snacks that are loaded with carbs and sugar. Unhealthy snacks are easy to grab on the go, they’re often cheap, and sometimes sugar is just what you think you need to push you through the valleys of your day.

The problem is those unhealthy, sugary, carby snacks not only make you feel worse, they’re bad for you in the long run. They contribute to conditions like diabetes and obesity.

According to the folks over at Under Armour, “Aiming for a 200-calorie snack is easy when you take nutrient density into account. For example, an apple with a handful of almonds will be more satisfying in the long run than a bag of chips.”

They’ve put together a list of six healthy snacks – that include chocolate! yogurt! fruit! and did we mention chocolate!? – that all clock-in at 200 calories or less.

So, go ahead. Grab a (healthy) snack!


Feel Guilty About Sleeping In? Don’t!

Do you ever feel guilty when you sleep in on the weekends? Ever roll over, look at your alarm clock and, to your horror, find that you slept until mid – or even late – morning?

For some people, sleeping in on the weekends is one of life’s greatest luxuries. For others, though, they’re wracked with guilt if they’re not awake when the sun comes up. 

But, guys – let go of the guilt! 

A small new American study showed that getting extra sleep for just two two consecutive nights countered the effect of short-term sleep deprivation.

“It gives us some hope that if there is no way to extend sleep during the week, people should try very hard to protect their sleep when they do get an opportunity to sleep in and sleep as much as possible to pay back the sleep debt,” said lead study author Josaine Broussard of the University of Colorado Boulder.

Folks who are chronically sleep-deprived are more likely to develop health problems such as obesity to cognitive deficits.

“By catching up on sleep on the weekends, people are reducing average extent and severity of the effects of sleep deprivation,” said the authors. “Ideally, we would all get sufficient sleep on a nightly basis.”



Digestion and Chiropractic

How’s your digestion these days? Having any issues? If you’re like many Americans, you suffer from occasional digestive issues… but did you know chiropractic can help with that?

It’s true!

Most folks with digestive issues try one over-the-counter remedy after another, which may treat their symptoms, but not the cause of the situation.

Chiropractic medicine is extremely effective at treating issues related to digestion. It’s all connected, you see! Your digestive system is entirely linked to your nervous system, and your nervous system has complete control over numerous aspects of your digestive function.

When the spine isn’t aligned properly, strain is placed on the nerves, which leaves them unable to send the necessary signals to your digestive organs that trigger them to work properly.

When your digestive organs don’t receive those signals, ailments like upset stomach, constipation and chronic acid reflux can occur. These symptoms can remain until the interference in your nervous system is corrected.

Using safe, gentle and non-invasive techniques, a chiropractor can manipulate your spine in such a way that the strain is removed from your nervous system. When the strain is removed, digestion is improved because your nervous system is able to function the way it was designed to do.

And it’s not just for adults! Studies have shown that chiropractic is particularly effective at relieving digestive issues in infants, primarily those suffering from constipation and infrequent bowel movements.


Oprah – and science – say to try these things!

We read once that if aliens landed on our planet and asked to meet our leader, we, as a collective society, would take them to Oprah. Because, let’s face it, Oprah knows a few things.

And recently her “O Magazine” published nine little tweaks you can make to your life to help you live longer and live happier.

These tweaks are backed by research, by the way, not just Oprah.

First, move your body for at least 30 minutes per day. Moderate cardio and high-intensity interval training are best, according to research, but the main thing is to get moving.

Next, if you have a partner, kiss them goodbye. Research says that by doing so, you’ll strengthen your relationship and lower your stress levels.

Third, eat! We can all get behind that one, right? The researchers all say that it’s more important to eat nutritious foods than to obsess about calories.

Fourth, re-frame your stress. Basically they say if your to-do list seems ten miles long, don’t get frazzled—get fired up.

Fifth – eat vegetables with lunch. Researchers say that those colorful plant foods like broccoli, tomatoes and carrots are high in antioxidants. Antioxidants are associated with lower levels of inflammation

Sixth, you should avoid soda. Try a mini-meditation break instead or do a few quick, easy exercises to perk yourself up.

Next, you should try to add more fish to your diet. Choose salmon, tuna, or another oily fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

Eighth, in the evening, power your mind down by trying journaling or doing easy yoga.

And the last tiny tweak suggested by Oprah and science is to go to sleep at a reasonable hour.

If you’d like to read more about these tweaks including the science behind them, go here:


Here Comes the Eclipse!

What are you doing next Monday afternoon? Watching the solar eclipse, perhaps?

NASA is, of course, the best source for information about the upcoming event, but we can break it down for you.

What they’re calling the Great American Total Solar Eclipse will darken skies across the country, from Oregon to South Carolina, along a stretch of land about 70 miles wide.

This phenomenon happens when our view of the sun is blocked by the moon. When the moon lines up between the sun and Earth, the moon will cast a shadow onto Earth. This is what we on the ground observe as a solar eclipse.

This will be the first total solar eclipse crossing the US from coast to coast since 1918, making it a once-in-a-lifetime event for most folks.

Lucky for us in Apex, NC, we’re just beyond that line, meaning we’ll see approximately 93% of the sun blocked by the moon.

If, like us, you’re in the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina, here are some ideas for where you might watch this truly awesome event unfold:

Keep in mind, skywatchers, you should NEVER look at a partial solar eclipse without proper eye protection. Looking directly at the sun, even when it is partially covered by the moon, can cause serious eye damage or blindness.

Even if you can’t see it in person, most local news stations, and even some national cable stations, as well as dozens of websites (including the NASA link above!) will allow you to watch the sun disappear for a few minutes from the comfort of your home.