Vital Care PT - April 2019


APRIL 2019


(623) 544-0300

I n H onor of N ational S iblings D ay THE POWER OF UNCONDITIONAL LOVE

Vital Care Patients ENTER TO WIN Find the misspelled word in this newsletter and call (623) 544-0300 for your chance to win a $10 gift card! CALL (623) 544-0300 Contest is for past and present Vital Care PT patients only. I’m the oldest of my parents’ four kids. After I was born, Melissa came a year later, Amy four years later, and David six years later. Because Melissa and I were so close in age, when we were kids, we were often mistaken for twins. This legacy of being close in age followed us all the way through high school. Because we were so close, we often shared the same friends, While Easter is usually regarded as the most important holiday in the month of April, there is a lesser-known event celebrated this month that allows me time to show admiration for some of the most influential people in my life: National Siblings Day. Having grown up with three younger siblings, I simply can’t imagine a childhood without them. So, in honor of National Siblings Day, I wanted to take some time to highlight just how important a role they’ve played and continue to play in my life.

too. This was nice because it meant that we always had a group of friends that we could hang out with together, have fun, and share secrets. When Amy and David came along, Melissa and I used to pretend that they were our babies. We also found out pretty quickly that the rumors about last-born kids having fewer rules than their older siblings were absolutely true! Melissa and I laid all the framework, so by the time the other two came along, my parents were much more lenient. While I may have had to “take one for the team” being the oldest, I’m extremely grateful that I was my parents’ first child, because the responsibility associated with the role helped foster both my maturity level and my motivation to start and finish my goals. I started babysitting at age 10 and worked all throughout high school. To this day, I don’t believe I would have had the determination to do so without the experience of having younger siblings. They helped me learn, grow, and always strive for more. Fast-forward a few years into the future, and we are as close as we’ve ever been. We are now even raising our own babies together! In fact, in remembering how close Melissa and I were as children, Dave and I decided to have our own kids within a year of each other. Now, just as Melissa and I did as kids, my son and daughter run in the same friend group and share a really great relationship themselves.

Since my siblings and I are raising our kids during the same time frame, whenever we come up against a difficult parenting decision, we’ll call each other to brainstorm, ask advice, and sometimes vent. Our shared experiences as parents mirror the relationships we had growing up together.

No matter what was going on, we always had company. Even if we were mad at each other or got into an argument, we knew we were never alone, and I think there is something really powerful about that type of unconditional love. We taught each other to share, negotiate, compromise, and care about the feelings of others. I’m so thankful to have them in my life.

–Andrea McWhorter | 1

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O ne L ittle P ill T hat C an D o Y our B ody G ood THE MANY WONDERS OF OMEGA-3S

COGNITIVE FUNCTION BENEFITS Several studies have concluded that regularly consuming omega-3 fatty acids can help maintain cognitive function. While research shows no cognitive recovery in extremely elderly subjects who already suffer from dementia, evidence indicates that taking fish oil on a regular basis may prevent or postpone the onset of cognitive decline. Omega-3 consumption may also improve the quality of life for individuals suffering from depression or anxiety at any age. WHICH OMEGA-3 SUPPLEMENT IS RIGHT FOR ME? If you eat fatty fish several times a week every week, you may already get enough omega-3s, but it can be difficult to get a therapeutic dose of fish oil from food alone on a regular basis. A fish oil supplement can provide additional fatty acids. Look for an ingredient list that specifically shows EPA and DHA; some brands use misleading labeling that only shows the total amount of fish oil rather than the actual omega-3s. Recommendations vary, but most sources indicate that a dosage of 1,000–2,000 milligrams (1–2 grams) of combined EPA and DHA provides benefits. If the smell or “fish burps” bother you, choose enteric-coated capsules, which dissolve in the small intestine rather than the stomach. Omega-3 caps also come in vegan options sourced from seaweed and algae.

Because fish oil is said to improve everything from heart health to chronic dry eye, it may sound a bit like, well, snake oil. But this brilliant little supplement packs a big punch, especially for older adults.

HEART HEALTH BENEFITS The omega-3 fatty acids docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and

eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) have been shown to support heart health in multiple ways. The Mayo Clinic cites research suggesting that higher levels of EPA are associated with a reduced risk of congestive heart failure in older adults. Studies also report that people with moderate to severe hypertension typically see a positive effect on their blood pressure if they regularly take omega-3s. JOINT AND EYE BENEFITS Omega-3 fatty acids can reduce pain, stiffness, and swelling associated with osteoarthritis and other joint disorders by lubricating the joints and acting as an anti-inflammatory. As we age, our ability to produce tears diminishes. Fish oil’s lubricating and anti-inflammatory properties also make it a great treatment for and defense against chronic dry eye.


Here at Vital Care Physical Therapy, we rely on a variety of factors to continue our progress. Out of all those, none is as crucial as the wonderful patients who come to us for help during their rehabilitation journey. Check out what this patient had to say about her experience. first consultation, I noticed that all the people I worked with were extremely competent and knowledgeable about the function of the human knee. My interactions with Andrea, Kristen, Abby, and Justin were fun. They made me feel welcome and comfortable while I learned and completed exercises. What’s more, the entire staff is very friendly. They scheduled all of my appointments immediately after I was evaluated by Andrea. “I became a client of Vital Care Rehabilitation after having a full knee replacement. From my very

“Now, my knee feals great. All the exercises they gave me to do completely helped with my overall flexibility and strength. I would definitely recommend Vital Care to anyone who is looking for quality physical therapy led by great people!”

–Betty R.

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4 A ctivities T hat C an H elp E xpedite R ecovery

Though the best part of our day here at Vital Care Physical Therapy is working with patients on their individual exercises, we understand that rehabilitation is significantly less enjoyable when you’re recovering from a painful injury. So, even though you can count on

us to formulate tailored exercise regimens to help you recover as quickly as possible, we also want to help expedite your healing process as much as we can to get you back to the life you led prior to your injury. To that end, here are five additional activities to keep in mind between appointments with us. 1) FOCUS ON WEIGHT Excess weight, especially in the mid-section, can put a strain on your back or hips and cause you more pain overall. Try to stay within 10 pounds of your ideal weight to avoid aggravating an existing injury and to prevent future ones from occurring. 2) MAINTAIN GOOD POSTURE People with poor posture put excessive strain on their back. Bad posture can lead to flare-ups of back, neck, or sciatic pain, so try these remedies to improve your posture: Take frequent standing breaks, and don’t forget to sit in a straight-backed chair with your head up, especially during those long days at work. 3) STRENGTHEN YOUR CORE While it might seem strange, weak abdominal muscles can be a major source of back pain. If your abdominal muscles can’t hold you upright, your back is forced to overcompensate. Start doing regular abdominal exercises to strengthen your core, and you’ll notice a difference. 4) AVOID HIGH HEELS Even though high heels look great, they put you in an awkward standing position because they shift your center of gravity and strain your back. In short, they do much more harm than good. If you’re not wanting to get rid of your shoe collection, try to stick to 1-inch heels — or less, if you can. Keeping these four points in mind will help increase your speed of recovery and decrease the chance of further injury. If you have questions about any or all of them, don’t hesitate to give us a call!


Radishes start showing up in droves during the spring and summer months, but all too often we only eat the bulbs raw on salads and discard the greens. This recipes bucks both of those trends, with the radishes being roasted alongside their green tops. INGREDIENTS

• 3 bunches radishes with greens attached • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil • Salt and pepper, to taste

• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


1. Heat oven to 500 F. While heating, trim radishes and wash greens. Pat both dry using a paper towel. 2. In a large ovenproof skillet, heat oil over high heat until shimmering. Season radishes with salt and pepper, add to skillet, and cook until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Transfer entire skillet to oven rack and roast for 15 minutes. 3. Once removed from oven, return skillet to stove. Over medium heat, stir in butter and add greens. Cook until they are wilted, about 2 minutes. 4. Finish with lemon juice and additional salt if desired. Serve immediately.

Inspired by Food & Wine magazine | 3


(623) 544-0300 Fax: (623) 544-0239

THIS ISSUE I nside 14545 W. Grand Ave., #108 Surprise, AZ 85374 In Honor of National Siblings Day PAGE 1

The Many Wonders of Omega-3s

Success Stories PAGE 2

Roasted Radishes With Radish Greens

4 Activities That Can Help Expedite Recovery PAGE 3 3 Travel Myths Debunked PAGE 4


3 Travel Myths You Should Stop Believing


Traveling has many social and educational benefits, but some people have hesitations that prevent them from jetting off on new adventures. Below are three debunked travel myths to give you some ease as you plan your summer vacation!

Fact: While jet lag can make you sleepy, it’s actually caused by a disruption in your circadian rhythm. Our bodies are cyclical, and the circadian rhythm is set by both a natural need for your body to reset and outside forces, such as your job, time zone, and diet. Travel can disrupt this rhythm and routine, which leaves you lethargic during and after your vacation. Sticking to water before and during your flights and staying physically active during and after traveling are great ways to fight jet lag and get back into your normal rhythm. Don’t let these travel myths keep you from seeing the world. Set a budget, go with your gut, and prepare for a shifting rhythm to make your next adventure the best one yet.


Fact: You can travel anywhere on a budget. Tracking flights to score the best deal, setting spending limits, and packing meals are a few ways to save money. Hostels and Airbnbs are great alternatives to spendy hotel stays. Additionally, you don’t have to cross the country to have a great trip. Every state has museums, unique roadside attractions, historical sites, and a booming nightlife. When you know your price limits and what you want to do, traveling can be a fun and inexpensive venture.


Fact: If you’re smart about what you do and where you go, traveling can be safe. Go with your gut and only stay somewhere that is approved by travel guides. Visit places you feel comfortable in, and do your research by reading travel blogs, websites, and books to find places that have been vetted by others. Traveling in groups can also be a great way to lower your risk of danger. As long as you plan ahead, you will have a safe trip.

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