Focus PT Nov 2017

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November 2017

A Thanksgiving Family Road Trip Cruising Through Carmel, Big Sur, and Big Basin With the Manrique Clan

L ike most things with my family, Thanksgiving is always an adventure. Whether we’re hosting my family in town or trekking to Orangevale to meet my in-laws for the weekend, it’s an exciting time. Every year we alternate going on Christmas or Thanksgiving to my in-laws. This year, it’s our turn to head north for Thanksgiving. The kids, my wife, and I are taking the whole week off so we can make a road trip out of it, stopping in some of the most beautiful spots in California and plopping down our tents for a couple nights along the way. It’s a tradition by now, and we have done it the last few times we’ve had Thanksgiving in Orangevale. We pile into the Expedition and head out early in the week. Whenever we have a trip like this planned, I look forward to it for months. There’s nothing better than cruising up the coast with your family. We crack the windows open to let in the salty tang of the ocean air, and, in the distance, we hear the lull of waves hissing on the beach. First, we’ll pass through Carmel, then move up through Big Sur and keep an eye out for the perfect camping spot among the Big Basin Redwoods.

Redwoods, of course. I think we Californians are spoiled, with many of the most incredible natural sights in the country only a few hours apart. The fun continues when we finally arrive in Orangevale, usually on Wednesday evening. My brother-in-law typically joins us as we help prepare the following morning’s Thanksgiving feast.

The spread for the meal is a little different than the

traditional roast turkey, as my wife’s family is all vegetarian. My wife was actually born and raised to be a vegetarian. The first Thanksgiving I spent with her family, I was dumbfounded at the lack of meat. “Well, we can get you a little game hen,” my wife told me, and I thought, “Well, that isn’t exactly turkey … ” But when I finally began to dig into all of the wonderful food they’d prepared, I came around pretty quick. It’s always delicious because my mother-

Often, our first stop is Morro Bay. We set up our tents in a lightly wooded area not far from the lagoon. Though, I have to say, my favorite place to camp has to be Big Sur, overlooking the sloping mountain faces that stretch along the forest right up to the sea’s boundary. There’s steep competition for camping in the

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in-law is a really good cook. And all the other staples are there: mashed potatoes, cranberries, and my mother-in-law’s insanely tasty pecan pie. I feel blessed to have this time with family, and I’m reminded of that every road trip we take and holiday we celebrate. On Thanksgiving, I’m especially grateful for the abundance in my life, including my healthy and happy family, the wonderful food, my career, and, of course, being able to take in the gorgeous California landscape every day. -Julian Manrique

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The Truth About Turmeric

For thousands of years, sunny yellow turmeric has been a staple in curries as well as a spice renowned for its ability to treat a vast number of ailments. In recent years, this South Asian native has become a sort of “spice-of-all-trades.” Turmeric’s popularity has surged throughout North America. People are adding it to food and using it to treat everything from arthritis to heartburn. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the spice can treat just about every kind of inflammation, whether it’s joint pain or a headache. Have a stomachache or nausea? Try turmeric. Have a mild rash or burn on your skin? Try turmeric. Current studies are even looking into turmeric’s effectiveness as a treatment for diabetes and dementia. When one substance is purported to have near-magical healing powers, you have to remember to take it with an additional dose of skepticism. Can one spice really cure everything that ails you? Let’s ask science. Researchers have identified over 20 distinct compounds that work similar to NSAIDs (such as aspirin and ibuprofen). Of those compounds, six are COX-2 inhibitors. COX- 2 is an enzyme that causes inflammation and pain in the body. “I have been a gymnast for nearly 10 years now, and tearing my ACL a year ago put me in my all-time low for the sport. To think, only a few months earlier, I accepted a full athletic scholarship to the University of Washington. Someone telling me I couldn’t do the sport I love for a year seemed impossible. I couldn’t imagine how I would come back. Thankfully, a good friend, Melanie Kinder, referred me to Julian. She told me such great stories of how much he helped. I was skeptical whether he was really that good, but Julian did not disappoint. He helped me not only physically, but mentally too, always making me feel better leaving than when I came in. I have now made a full recovery, and I can’t thank Julian enough!” –Ellie Bagley SUCCESS STORIES

In short, these six compounds help block the enzymatic reaction that triggers inflammation. One of these compounds is called curcumin, which is often considered the active ingredient in turmeric. An article published in the medical journal Nutrition and Cancer found that, by weight, pure turmeric powder contains 3.14 percent curicumin. However, clinical trials of curcumin have produced less- than-stellar results. A comprehensive review of 120 studies of curcumin, published in 2017 in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, found no evidence that the compound produced positive results as an anti-inflammatory or antioxidant. In fact, researchers found curcumin to be an, “unstable, reactive, non- bioavailable compound.”

So, what does this mean for people who use turmeric for its medicinal properties?

If it works for you, continue to use it. If you’ve thought about adding it to your diet, give it a try. It’s safe to use, and studies have shown virtually no toxicity, even in high doses.


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As athletics become a bigger commitment for children of all ages, injuries happen more frequently. Nobody wants their child to suffer an injury while playing sports, but when it does happen, you want to know that your kids have safe recovery options. Physical therapy offers many benefits to athletes dealing with pain, as well as those seeking to prevent injury in the first place. Young athletes don’t just deal with the strain of physical activity. They also have to cope with the fact that their bones and cartilage are growing, which increases the likelihood of tissue injuries. If your child is injured, physical therapy offers a safe,

needs of every individual. This adaptability allows for tailored treatment programs based on strength and flexibility training.

In physical therapy, recovery and training techniques are coupled with education, limiting the risk of a repeat injury. This education also aids in injury prevention by teaching young athletes about body mechanics. If a child understands the tenets of safe, mechanically sound movement, they are less likely to end up on the sidelines. Sports medicine and physical therapy techniques increase range of motion, promote proper stretching, and help a child become more in tune with what their body is telling them. If you are the parent of a young athlete, consider consulting a physical therapist as your child becomes more serious about their sport. It won’t just limit the risk of injury; it can also increase performance. Of course, some injuries are unavoidable. In those instances, physical therapy is often the safest road to getting your child back on the field and doing what they love most.

noninvasive path to recovery, without the need for excessive medication. Physical therapy is a dynamic method, accounting for the unique

This protein-packed, fat-free soup is delicious, only requires three ingredients, and is super quick and easy to put together. What more could you ask for? 3 INGREDIENT BLACK BEAN SOUP



• 2 (15.5-ounce) cans black beans • 1 cup chicken broth • 1 (14.5–15-ounce) can diced tomatoes


1. Combine all ingredients in a medium pot. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. 2. Remove from stove and blend using an immersion blender or a traditional blender.

(Recipe courtesy of

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A Thanksgiving Family Road Trip The Secrets of Turmeric Success Stories Physical Therapy Can Help Young Athletes

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Attention Back Pain & Sciatica Sufferers! Back Pain and Sciatica Workshop Reveals How to Naturally Heal Back Pain and Sciatica for Good

Focus Physical Therapy, RSM – Thursday, November 16th, 2017



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