Primary Eye Care Associates - March/April 2020



high school, I used to sign my name “Steven Chander, Dr2b.” I also hung a plaque on my dorm room wall that said Dr2b . People would ask me all the time what it meant, and I said it means what is says — one day, I will be a doctor. Recently, we have been playing a new game at PECA called “Pain Points at PECA.” We cannot come to any of our meetings without bringing a list of at least three “pain points.” These are things that may frustrate us, create inefficiency, or simply make us question: “Why do we do that this way?” The point of the exercise is to bring a proposed solution for each pain point. We then categorize the resolutions as important-urgent, important-nonurgent, unimportant-urgent, or unimportant- nonurgent. This way we all get to know each other’s pain points and resolve them together. Recently, new pain points have not even made it to the list because our team has already resolved them! The staff is happier, which means patients are happier. Just check out our Google reviews if you don’t believe me! Today, my young team of eye care professionals may not retire in eye health care with me, but they will have developed skills to solve problems, have fun, and be happy in their lives. We are only as good as our weakest link in our personal, family, and professional lives. I value my team and encourage them to tell me anything, like Chris encouraged me to do. It’s the foundation of great happiness. I have open eyes and ears 24-7-365 for my team, my kids, and my patients. I encourage you all to voice what’s on your mind — good or bad! So, thank you, Magdalena, Carol, Chris, Veronica, Sarai, Joslyn, Yessica, Kathy, Yuliza, Jessica, Maria, and Katelyn ... you guys are absolute rock stars, and I wouldn’t trade you for anyone!

In my experience as an employer and an employee, bosses who really care about the well-being of their team members create the best working environments and the best patient experiences. When I worked at a local pharmacy in high school, I learned a lot about what being a leader is all about from my boss. She taught me a very important life/leader lesson I will never forget; more on that in a few paragraphs. My boss was a woman named Chris. She was probably around 30 or 32 years old when I worked for her, and that made her an “older lady” in my 16- or 17-year-old eyes, even though she was pretty hip. She was always smiling, and she made everyone who was working for her feel valued. I was kind of a shy, reserved teenager, but Chris would still make sure I felt like my hard work was recognized. Plus, she always complimented me on how I dressed. All in all, she knew how to boost my confidence. I felt like Chris knew me. That’s why when I was passed up for a promotion to a pharmacist’s assistant position, I was taken aback. Instead, a guy who wanted to go into marketing and had only worked there a little bit longer than me got the position. Over the next few weeks, I processed a lot of feelings. I was angry, distraught, confused, and probably a little jealous, too. I thought Chris had noticed my hard work and appreciated that I knew more about the goings-on behind the counter than anyone. Most importantly,

I thought she noticed I was preparing for a potential career in pharmacy/health care. Well, it turns out all she noticed was the distraught look on my face. One day, Chris pulled me aside to have a conversation. We talked about everything, about life at home, school, girls, and everything in between. We were just shooting the breeze. Finally, she got me talking about my feelings about being passed up for the promotion and how I wanted to be a pharmacist. Chris just listened. Then, she told me she thought I would make a great pharmacist or eye doctor, but in order to be truly successful, I had to become more confident. She didn’t know I was potentially interested in a pharmacy or eye doctor career because I had never voiced it to her or to anyone but my family. So, how would Chris know? Since that time, I have taught my kids and my team to speak up! If something is not fair, say something about it. You have to voice your aspirations and desires; you never know who’s listening. Had I let her know I was an aspiring health care provider, Chris would have come to me directly about the pharmacy assistant position. I have no doubt of that. But because I didn’t make my aspiration public knowledge, it cost me an important opportunity. The same thing happened to me with my never-happened prom date. But that’s for another article, another time! While I was in

Until then #2020, and Eye’ll see you later!

– Dr. Steven Chander

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energy. Ingesting more than 5 grams, though, will leave you feeling bloated with a lot of stomach discomfort. Creatine powder can be found at most wellness stores. BEETROOT POWDER Beetroot powder is made from the roots of the beet plant and is rich in nitrate. Nitrate relaxes blood vessels, creating increased blood flow and oxygen delivery. This enables your body to produce energy more efficiently and maintain energy levels, making beetroot powder a great aid for endurance sports like running, soccer, and biking. In the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, a study reported that athletes could work out for 25% longer when they used beetroot powder. Fatigue didn’t set in until much later in their workout, which improved their training and performance. This spring, say goodbye to energy drinks and get the boost you need with one of these natural energy supplements.

As spring kicks off, many people will be tempted to grab a Monster, Red Bull, or Rockstar to get through the day. Energy drinks may give you a quick boost, but the high levels of caffeine and sugar can lead to migraines and increased anxiety. If over-consumed, these drinks can even lead to Type 2 diabetes. To avoid these health hazards, try out a few of these natural energy boosters instead. ASHWAGANDHA Ashwagandha is an evergreen shrub found mostly in India. As part of the Ayurveda system, an alternative medicine practice from India, it’s also known as “Indian ginseng.” The Alternative Medicine Review published a study indicating ashwagandha increases the body’s resilience to physical and mental stress by lowering

levels of the stress hormone cortisol by 28%. Ashwagandha can also help you through long workouts and the 9-to-5 grind because it may also improve brain function, including memory. You can get ashwagandha in pill form at most convenience stores around the world. CREATINE Many people don’t realize creatine is a natural energy booster because they get it mostly in processed, high- sugar energy drinks. However, in doses less than 5 grams, creatine provides impressive benefits during high-intensity activities, short-duration exercises, and sports, including football, shot put, and weightlifting. This compound is found in red meat, pork, poultry, and fish, and when consumed, it releases phosphates that give your body a quick burst of


Eye patches are as central to the pirate mythology as peg legs and buried loot. While popular culture has exaggerated the life of a pirate like sailors once exaggerated encounters with sea monsters, it does seem like quite a few pirates actually wore eye patches. While you might think they wore them to cover up wounds they sustained from crossing cutlasses in battle or accidentally scratching their eye with their hook hand, the real reason pirates wore eye patches is a lot more interesting. Storming the decks of Spanish galleys and British merchant ships was a risky venture not for the faint of heart or morally upright. Even the motliest of pirate crews knew they had to be prepared for a fight, wherever it might happen. Below deck, where the pirates hoped to find cargo holds bursting with booty, light was limited, and anyone who went down would immediately be temporarily blinded while their eyes adjusted. That was where eye patches came in handy.

It takes the human eye around 25 minutes to adjust to a dark room after being out in the sun. That meant pirates would have to fight blind below deck — unless one of their eyes was already adjusted to the dark. Eye patches were essentially ye olde night vision. When pirates moved below deck to find the ship’s treasure, they could move an eye patch from one eye to the other and be able to see anything before them. While we might have thought having an eye patch hindered a pirate’s vision, if anything, it turns out the opposite was actually true. Eye patches actually helped them raid, pillage, and plunder ships all across the seven seas. That said, even pirates with the keenest vision would give their finest rum for the comprehensive eye care services that Primary Eye Care offers. Even if you’re not planning on chasing down treasure ships anytime soon, give Primary Eye Care a call at (773) 692-6173.



Debunking Some Common Myths

The first week of April is Library Week, April 2 is Children’s Book Day, April 16 is Librarian Day, and April 28 is Great Poetry Reading Day. All this to say there are a lot of days worth celebrating for readers of all ages and inclinations in April. If you’re a bookworm who voraciously tears through novel after novel, you’ve probably heard a few “facts” at one point or another about how your favorite hobby can damage your eyesight. However, most of these “facts,” plausible as they sound, don’t have any basis in reality.

worked with what you had. Sometimes, what you had was a flashlight with a dim bulb. Don’t worry about how this affects your eyes, though. While it might put some minor strain on your peepers, dim light doesn’t damage your eyesight in the long run. DOES READING WHILE WEARING MY GLASSES MAKE MY VISION MORE DEPENDENT ON THEM? The more you wear reading glasses, the more you’ll get used to the clear vision they give you. If you use them while reading for a few hours on a rainy Sunday afternoon and then take them off, your vision might seem worse. Don’t worry, though — your reading glasses aren’t going to permanently wreck your vision and neither will a good few hours immersed in your latest read.

DOES READING SMALL PRINT WEAR OUT MY EYES? At the very worst, reading small print will cause your eyes some minor strain, similar to the effects that reading under dim light might produce. No evidence exists suggesting that reading small print will permanently damage your vision, though. That’s good news for any George R.R. Martin fans out there! So, the next time one of your friends tells you that your reading habits will damage your eyes, you can confidently return to your book, which probably has much more interesting things to say anyway. If the words on your page are getting blurrier, however, call Primary Eye Care and schedule an appointment today!


When your parents told you to go to sleep, but you absolutely needed to know what happened next to Frodo and Sam or Harry Potter and company, you



Inspired by


• 2 1/2 tbsp olive oil, divided • 4 boneless and skinless chicken breasts, pounded to a 1-inch thickness • Salt and pepper to taste • 1/4 cup whole-wheat panko • 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted • 6 tbsp spinach pesto

• 2 cups cherry tomatoes • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced • 1 tsp red wine vinegar


1. In a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat, add 1 tbsp olive oil. 2. Season chicken with salt and pepper, and add it to pan. Cook chicken for 5 minutes on each side, then remove pan from heat. 3. In a bowl, combine panko, Parmesan cheese, and butter. 4. Spread pesto over chicken and top with panko mixture. 5. Broil chicken for 2 minutes on high heat until browned. 6. In a skillet, heat remaining oil over medium-high heat. 7. Add tomatoes and cook for 6 minutes. 8. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly. 9. Season tomato mixture with salt and pepper, and add red wine vinegar. 10. Serve tomatoes with broiled chicken.

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5460 S. Archer Ave. Chicago, IL 60638

Inside This Issue

Open Eyes and Open Ears PAGE 1

Ditch the Energy Drinks PAGE 2

Why Did Pirates Wear Eye Patches? PAGE 2

Reading and Eyesight: Myth vs. Fact PAGE 3

Pesto Chicken With Blistered Tomatoes PAGE 3

3 Eco-Friendly Home Swaps to Make During Spring-Cleaning PAGE 4

YOUR GUIDE TO SPRING- GREENING 3 Eco-Friendly Home Swaps to Make When You Declutter

It takes a special kind of person to enjoy spring-cleaning. For most of us, the satisfaction of a clean house doesn’t quite outweigh the hours of scrubbing, sorting, and slogging through heaps of unnecessary stuff. If you’re struggling to find the motivation to start your spring-cleaning, try flipping the paradigm: Instead of spring-cleaning, think of what you’re doing as spring- greening , and make some eco-friendly swaps along the way. Here are a few ideas to get you started. 1. SWAP YOUR PLASTIC SPRAY BOTTLES FOR BULK OR DIY CLEANING PRODUCTS. According to a Statista report, in 2019, the household cleaners market was worth more than $31 billion, and it’s continuously growing. You can save money on cleaning supplies by taking the green route. When your current stock runs out, try buying bulk cleaners or making your own. Both options will save plastic because you can reuse your bottles, and they can help you avoid the harmful chemicals found in most cleaners. Visit and read the blog post “Zero Waste Cleaning Supplies + Recipes” to get started. 2. EXPLORE ALTERNATIVE LAUNDRY DETERGENTS. If you’re used to using a plastic jug of liquid laundry detergent,

it’s time to step out of your comfort zone. This spring, try exploring greener alternatives like plant-based bulk laundry powder (Molly’s Suds is an excellent source). Or, if you’re feeling really adventurous, you can even try adding all-natural cleaners like soap nuts or English ivy to your laundry loads. For more on the former, search “soap nuts” on, and read up on ivy detergent at 3. SAY GOODBYE TO PAPER TOWELS. Paper towels are a mainstay in American homes, but do we really need them when a good old-fashioned rag can do the job? According to the Ocean Conservancy, 13 billion pounds of paper towels are tossed in the U.S. each year! This spring, quit paper towels and keep a stash of dish rags under the sink to do your dirty work. When you’re cleaning out your closet, you can even cut up old T-shirts and add them to your rag stash! If you’re brave, try giving up tissues, too — an old-school hanky does the trick. If you’ve made all three of these swaps, don’t stop there! To continue your green journey, visit any of the blogs mentioned above and start browsing.


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