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Health & Wellness Newsletter



Having a strong immune response is one of the best defenses against the Covid-19 virus. In a previous post I highlighted the benefits of getting 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Studies investigating how sleep effects the immune system demonstrate that people who got less than 6 hours sleep per night had a significant suppression of their immune systemof up to 70% and have been shown to be more prone to get sick with the ‘common cold’ or the influenza viruses. Stress & Viruses Many of us are experiencing increased stress levels during this pandemic. A meta-analysis of how stress affects the immune response showed stress of any significant duration - from a few days to a fewmonths or years, as happens in real life - all aspects of immunity went downhill. Exercise has been indicated for boosting the immune response and decreasing the stress hormone cortisol and has been substantiated by numerous research articles. Additionally meditation is an activity practiced by many to reduce stress levels. A study of over 3,500 adults showed that meditation lives up to its reputation for stress reduction. Exercise & You Defense System Acute exercise is an immune system booster that improves defense activity andmetabolic health. Research demonstrates a clear inverse relationship betweenmoderate exercise training and disease risk. One study found that people who exercised 5 or more days a week reported fewer days with cold symptoms and less severe symptoms than people who did little exercise and reported being unfit. Nutrition & Immune Response Nutritious Foods that will support a strong immune response are vitamin C rich foods like red peppers, kiwi, papaya, citrus fruits, broccoli, greens like spinach and kale. However there are some specific benefits received from certain foods and teas. Green Tea: Green tea supplements have shown to decrease the frequency of colds 3 times more than the placebo in a group of 200 healthcare workers. Green tea also has been shown to boost

gamma delta T-cells, immune cells that fight infection. Individuals in one study who drank 6 cups of green tea a day increased gamma interferon cell production that helps fight infection, 15 fold during a one week period. Garlic: Garlic is another super immune boosting herb that has been shown to suppress inflammation and also boost immune response by boosting natural killer cells. In a placebo controlled trial garlic users suffered 60% fewer colds and 70% fewer days that they were affected recovering quicker. Additionally garlic has been shown to alter expression of genes in regards to anticancer immunity. Probiotics: Probiotics boost the immune response facilitating increased activity of white blood cells to respond to invading pathogens. The same was seen in natural killer cells to kill cancer cells. Randomized control trials show that those that take probiotics have fewer colds, fewer sick days and fewer symptoms compared to those who do not take a probiotic. Interestingly raw fruits and vegetables provide a diversity of microbes and studies of older individuals that increase their fruit and vegetable intake improved antibody response to vaccination. So how do foods we eat change our molecular expression in regards to our immune response? Consuming healthy foods may put our immune cells on alert and have them ready for an invasion by responding to antigens in these foods that use similar pathways that invading pathogens utilize. Start your immune boosting program today by incorporating these recommendations into your lifestyle. If you needmore guidance schedule a consult with Jeff Gilliam at ReQuest Physical Therapy to join our weight loss/ healthy lifestyle physical therapy program. Jeff Gilliam PT, PhD, OCS


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Live Life Pain-free

Health & Wellness Newsletter



INSIDE: • Hand Therapy For Arthritis Relief • Patient Success Spotlight • Healthy Recipe • Best Exercise To Do When You Have Arthritis

Whether you have pain or have been suffering for a long time, seeing a physical therapist at ReQuest Physical Therapy can help you return to a more active and pain-free life. Give us a call today:

You use your hands, elbows, and shoulders hundreds of times throughout the day for both basic and complex tasks. This can make it extremely difficult when living with arthritis, which limits your ability to move freely. If you are living with arthritis, you’re not alone. In fact, there are over 100 different types of arthritis that people are diagnosedwith. Arthritis pain is directly correlated to the limitation of mobility in your joints, muscles, ligaments, and tendons. The more freedomof movement in your joints, strength in your muscles, and improved circulation, the less you will be affected by arthritic inflammation and pain. Arthritis in the upper extremities can be successfully relieved with the help of physical and occupational therapy. Contact ReQuest Physical Therapy today to find out more. Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Hand Therapy – Defined: People have found enormous success in upper extremity arthritis relief through physical therapy and occupational therapy treatments. Before you can understand why physical therapy and occupational therapy are

• GAINESVILLE: (352) 373-2116 • TIOGA CENTER: (352) 692-2131

both so important for arthritic pain relief, you must first understand the differences between physical therapy and occupational therapy. Physical therapy refers to a variety of natural and conservative treatments aimed at relieving pain and promoting healing. Occupational therapy, while it is a similar form of conservative treatment, focuses more on rehabilitation and the “relearning” of daily activities. The purpose of occupational therapy is to make daily life easier by participating in treatments and exercises. Hand therapy is also a form of occupational therapy. While the title only specifies hands, this form of therapy focuses on the upper extremity as a whole, which also includes the wrist, forearm, elbow, arm, and shoulder. Hand therapists will treat injuries and ailments that affect the upper extremity and work toward returning the affected area to its highest level of function.


A hand therapist typically uses manual techniques to manipulate the affected arthritic area, in order to release tension, swelling, and pain. Through the use of massage and hands-on treatments, patients can find significant improvement - sometimes after just one session! In some cases, additional techniques, such as ice and heat therapies, ultrasound, or electrical stimulation may also be used as part of your treatment plan, in order to manage your pain and keep symptoms at bay. Perhaps one of the biggest roles of a hand therapist, however, is prescribing targeted stretches and exercises. These will be dependent upon the type and severity of your arthritis, and will focus on improving the range of motion, strength, and overall function of your affected upper extremities, so you can safely and comfortably perform your daily activities once again. A large part of hand therapy is helping patients regain their independence in day-to-day tasks and improving their quality of life. On Your Own: Your therapist will provide you with the necessary stretches and exercises needed to keep up with the progress you made during your sessions. It is important to make sure you complete these stretches and exercises on your own, so your arthritis doesn’t worsen. For upper extremity arthritis, there is a quick exercise you can do every day to instantly relieve your pain. This technique assists the natural flow of lymphatic fluid out of your hands and arms: 1. Bring your affected arm out to the side slightly. Open and close your hand, feeling for any stiffness or discomfort in the finger or wrist joints. 2. With your other hand, gently place your open palm on your rib cage, high up into the underarm area.

3. Gently press into the skin and move your hand in clockwise circles, moving the skin on the rib cage underneath. You should feel no discomfort while you do this. If you do, then you are pressing too hard. 4. Perform this motion for 2-3 minutes. 5. Test your hand again by opening and closing it. It should feel lighter and with less discomfort. 6. Repeat this procedure multiple times a day for best results. Contact ReQuest Physical Therapy! At ReQuest Physical Therapy, we are equipped in providing specialized treatments and therapies for any pain or discomfort your arthritis may be causing you. To learn more about how our physical and occupational services can benefit you, and specifically how hand therapy can relieve your upper extremity arthritis, contact us today to schedule a consultation. Our team will work closely with you to determine which course of treatment will be best for your specific needs. Get back to living your life comfortably by calling us today!

Call us today to schedule an appointment!


INGREDIENTS • 3 tbsp. balsamic vinegar or to taste • ½ C chopped avocado and/or organic

in bite-sized pieces • 1 C cherry tomatoes, quartered • ½ C purple onion, minced • ½ C cabbage, diced • 1 tbsp. raw sunflower and/or pumpkin seeds

nonfat plain Greek yogurt • Salt and pepper, to taste

• 1 tbsp. fresh oregano or thyme, minced • 5 C broccoli florets and stems chopped

DIRECTIONS In a small bowl, whisk together the first 4 ingredients; set aside. In a medium bowl, combine vegetables and seeds. Pour in the balsamic avocado dressing mixture and toss well. Refrigerate for 25 - 30 minutes before serving to allow flavors to blend. This is one of the many complementary recipes shared in our healthy lifestyle program, Physicians’ Choice for Weight Loss.

Patient Success Spotlight

Do You Have Friends or Family Unable to Do The Following? • Move without pain • Bend and move freely REFER A FRIEND! WHO DO YOU KNOW THAT NEEDS OUR HELP?

• Balance confidently and securely • Sit for long periods comfortably • Walk for long distances • Live an active and healthy lifestyle

Have them call our office today! 1. Call and talk to a therapist 2. Discover why your pain has come back 3. Get your custom recovery program

I was hesitant about coming in during this time but I really enjoyed being able to do my session outdoors “I just wanted to say how well my PT went this morning. I was hesitant about coming in during this time but I really enjoyed being able to do my session outdoors- there was a lot more room and you made my session very creative. I wish there was always an option for outdoor PT!” -Judi S.



1. Open your smart phone to the camera app 2. Center the QR code above in the frame (this will take you directly to our Patient Results page) 3. Tell us how we’ve done! Click on the “Review Us” button on the top of the page.

Limited to the first 25 callers. Expires 05-31-20


Walking is the #1 exercise prescribed for arthritis. Some helpful tips to make your walking programmore enjoyable and beneficial are as follows: 1. Talk before you walk. Discuss your program with your physical therapist. 2. Walk a mile in your shoes and then reassess your need for arch supports or orthotics. 3. Walk with a buddy. 4. Be careful with leashed dogs. They might “walk you” and increase your risk of falling down. 5. Listen to your body: modify distance, time and intensity as needed. 6. Move slowly and use assistance as needed (with a cane or walking stick). For more information about starting a walking program visit www. to find out more information about their “Walk with Ease” program.

Other popular types of exercise for people with arthritis includes: stretching, tai chi, yoga, Pilates, water exercises, cycling,

strength training and hand mobility exercises. It is best to seek medical advice before starting any exercise program and to work with a physical therapist to develop a tailored exercise program.

Exercise Essentials Try this exercise to keep you moving...

About Us When you need physical therapy, you have the right to choose where you go. If you are tired of being a number and ready for a physical therapy team that’s proud to offer special services not found in any other practice in the Gainesville area, ReQuest Physical Therapy is your choice. We offer a variety of additional premier services to make your time at ReQuest as pleasant as possible, including discounts for cash/self-pay patients, flexible payment schedules, and same-day appointments. We also accept patients without a physician’s referral, so you can begin treatment quickly and without the hassle of extra paperwork.

BIRD DOG 4-POINT ARM & LEG RAISE Begin by placing your knees and hands on the floor, with your hips and shoulders at a 90° angle. While keeping stable and engaging your core muscles, lift one arm and an opposite leg straight out toward the horizon, with your thumb pointed to the ceil- ing. Place both arm and leg back down to starting position. Perform 10 repetitions and then repeat this exercise with the opposite arm and leg. To build stability, this exercise can first be performed using only the arm or leg, and the opposing arm or leg can be added once ready for progression.

Exercises copyright of

Strengthens Back Muscles

Always consult your physical therapist or physician before starting exercises you are unsure of doing.

We are now offering sessions outside to maximize our physical distancing and to take advantage of our beautiful Florida spring weather. Physical therapy can be done anywhere— all you need is some space and a little imagination. Our number one goal is empower YOU! We understand the fear and uncertainty in these unprecedented times and want to ensure that your health and wellness remains at the forefront of your life. When things get back to normal, we want you to hit the ground running! To schedule your Open Air Physical Therapy session call our patient care coordinators at (352) 373- 2116 and let them know you are ready to get moving outside! Open Air Physical Therapy

Telehealth at ReQuest PT

ReQuest Physical Therapy is committed to your health and wellness and is pleased to announce the addition of telehealth services for our patients! We have worked diligently to establish technology that allows us to continue treating your condition while also doing our part to #flattenthecurve! This digital platform means no interruption to plans of care, even when scheduled clinic visits are not an option.

Video Conference: Virtual face time with patients which allows therapists to collect all the necessary information to prescribe or modify exercises based on range of motion and functional testing.

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