Drink Up for Health!

Water is our ultimate life force. Staying hydrated has unlimited benefits for your health including weight management, supple skin and improved kidney function and digestion. As crucial as it may be, it is easy to forget to drink water throughout the day. As the weather heats up, it is time to make drinking water a priority. Your life depends on it!

Picture your house plant that you’ve forgotten about. It has dry soil and the plant may be starting to wilt. The first time you water it, the water runs right through and out of the pot. As you continue to water it, it is hydrated and able to HOLD ONTO the water you pour while the plant begins to stand upright and come back to life.

Now picture the inside of your body- is it hydrated and able to absorb water in order to nurture your mental and physical daily tasks? When you first start to drink the necessary water your body needs, it may go right through you. Frequent bathroom trips will likely lessen as your body becomes more hydrated and is able hold onto the water you drink.

Here are some tips to increase water intake:

-Find a BPA free water bottle you LOVE
-Take that water bottle with you everywhere you go
-Drink a glass of water first thing in the morning and before every meal
-Use an app that keeps track of intake, and sets reminders on your phone to drink
-Start a “Water Challenge” at work or home. Set a goal that everyone must meet, such as 3 water bottles a day. Discuss  the changes you all notice, tuning in to things like increased energy, decreased appetite and improvements in digestion
-Jazz up your water! Adding cucumber, mint, orange slices or lemon can make drinking water more enjoyable and had added nutritional benefits.

Remember, we live in Oregon, home to some of the best water in the country! Take advantage of that and drink up!

Shopping Healthy

vegetablesWhen we think about living a healthy lifestyle, there are many factors to consider. Exercise, diet and stress management are a few important parts of this equation. What each of these have in common is that they take time, something we often feel short on. When it comes to diet, we often take the quick and easy route to preparing meals, which can mean eating fast food or processed foods. However, it is easier to eat cleanly and healthy by preparing the majority of our meals at home using whole food ingredients. Here are some helpful tricks to maximize your time at the store and in the kitchen!

BEFORE GOING TO THE STORE
Plan your meal. Look at your entire week and loosely plan the meals you will have. Planning meals ahead of time will allow you to most efficiently use vegetables and meats for multiple meals, reducing the amount of spoiled food in your refrigerator, and saving you money.

Don’t go hungry. Being hungry will increase the odds of impulse buying or splurging on things you are trying to avoid. Have a healthy snack before you go!

WHILE YOU’RE THERE
Stick to the outer perimeter of the store. This is where you’ll find most whole food ingredients like produce, seafood or meats. The inner aisles are where most processed food products live, the foods that are high in refined grains and sugars, sodium and preservatives.

AT HOME
Prepare your meal. Choose a day when you have more time, like a Sunday, and prep healthy snacks or quick meals for the week. This saves time, and makes it easier to eat healthy throughout the week. For example, you can prepare five Ziplock bags containing a variety of vegetables, then take one with you each day to work. Also try preparing a weeks worth of smoothies by filling freezer safe bags or containers with spinach, cut up bananas, and berries, and placing them in your freezer. Each morning, you can quickly put the contents into your blender and add your daily choice of liquids and supplements like almond milk, flax seeds or hemp protein. This allows you to buy in bulk and will save you time and money.

With a little preparation and meal planning, you can make eating healthy easier and more accessible!

Tune up with Acupuncture

Portland Acupuncture Auto Accident PainMany patients come to Acupuncture Northwest seeking treatment for a specific problem, like a painful lower back, insomnia, or poor digestion. But what happens after that specific problem is treated and resolved? For most patients, we transition them to maintenance treatment.

The purpose of maintenance acupuncture treatments is to promote continued health, and prevent future symptoms or illness. Essentially, we want you to feel this good for a very long time. Much like how we take our car in for a tune-up, and invest in regular service to extend the life of the car, maintenance acupuncture can prevent symptoms of illness before they arise.

As a patient, maintenance could mean getting treatment one to four times a month, depending on the issue. For patients who feel the need for regular stress management or tension release, a treatment every week or every other week works wonders. For those who aren’t experiencing many symptoms of illness, but want to continue to feel balanced and strong, treatments once a month serve as smart long-term investments towards health.

Maintenance is so crucial to ongoing health because we are constantly bombarded by small stressors throughout our day, and they accumulate over time. Eventually, we succumb to the pileup of “junk” that has accumulated and we start having unwelcome symptoms. Acupuncture is like a reset for the body. An hour of acupuncture to keep your body in balance is a great way to avoid pain, boost immunity and keep your body running as healthy and happy as possible. By getting regular tune-up treatments, you can reduce the likelihood of injuries, and decrease the effects of stress, like weakened immunity, depression, anxiety, body pain, insomnia and digestive problems.

Why let your body fall back into old, unhealthy habits, when you have already done the work to start feeling like your best self, and it takes only minimal effort to stay there? You wouldn’t ignore the oil change light in your car, would you? Invest in your own body, today.

Easy Chicken Breast Marinade Recipe

Easy Chicken Breast Marinade

Here is a very simple and delicious chicken breast marinade Sarah’s mom often uses to marinade chicken before grilling it. Great for summer time grilling.

Servings: 4 (8 oz servings)

Marinade Ingredients

2 skinless chicken breasts

½ cup lemon juice

¼ cup olive oil

1 clove garlic minced or chopped

½ teaspoon oregano

½ teaspoon basil

½ tsp parsley

*You can easily substitute some of the herbs here and try other combinations of either fresh or dried herbs.

Instructions

1) Simply combine these 6 ingredients and mix well in a zip lock bag or bowl

2) Poke two skinless chicken breasts serveral times with a fork and place in marinade

3) Place covered or sealed chicken marinade in the fridge at least 3 hours

4) Grill or roast your chicken breasts and voila!