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I’m a little flabbergasted by how much misinformation pregnant women need to sort through these days. 

Perhaps I always took pregnancy for granted.  Meaning that, well, if women have been having babies for 2 million years, the body just knows what to do and we get to do our best at staying out of the way. 

I’m learning that although that is absolutely true, most women are so bombarded by anecdotes, brochures, websites, medical recommendations, books and so forth that they end up overwhelmed and not necessarily remembering that their body really does know what it’s doing. 

But you know what?  It does know and it’s absolutely amazing.  I’ve watched myself gain about 18 pounds seemingly effortlessly by eating the same things I always eat… well, plus a few extra servings of bacon and peaches and Daily Harvest’s amazing frozen yogurt 🙂  (sorry to you non-locals, this stuff is amazing!)

My point is that pregnancy is so much fun.  It’s fun to laugh at maternity wear.  Fun to feel little soccer kicks from the inside after a long day (or hard workout).  Fun feeling woozy because you stood up quickly.  Fun realizing that one dinner just doesn’t cut it every day.  Fun and Funny and Rediculous that all this can mean that your body is doing the most amazing things without you even knowing how ANY of it can happen properly. 

Heck, if I was in charge of it all, I’d probably forget to give the poor baby hair or I’d take a break and his nose would end up on the BACK of his head.  You get my point.  AMAZING.

Back to my point about the confusion for a moment…

I recently got a list from my MIDWIFE of drugs that are “SAFE IN PREGNANCY”.  This list covers an entire page and quite frankly is ridiculous.  These drugs are not proven safe in non-pregnant people never mind pregnancy and current research (heck even old research) shows that the placenta is not a barrier but is more of a sieve transporting these drugs straight to the baby where they have been proven to show up (in scalp artery tests done on the baby in utero) within 3 minutes and in doses as large as 30 times what that little body would otherwise be prescribed.

UNACCEPTABLE. 

I’m also saddened to see how many pregnant women do not exercise.  Yes, it’s harder.  Yes, your heart will pound.  Yes, you may feel dizzy more easily.  Yes, you’ll need to drink even more water.  What’s the problem?  You’re about to do something that is lovingly referred to as labor.  That means work. 

Sorry if this is part rant, part pep-talk but I just needed to let off a little steam.  Can’t wait to do our Radio Show this Sunday morning at 7:30am where we’ll talk all about these things and more.

Let’s clear up the confusion and rest easy knowing that Nature truly does not need any help… just no INTERFERENCE. 

Today, I’m setting my baby up for a win… in life.

Liisa.

 

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Most of us are looking forward to some sunshine and rest this weekend. If you are planning on catching some rays too I’d like to let you know about one of the best sunscreens available.

Burt’s Bees makes a chemical free SPF 30 Sunscreen that works great at protecting your skin from burning while not providing your skin with the harsh chemicals that most sunscreens contain (many of these have actually been proven to CAUSE cancer).

If you do get a little too much sun or just want to help your skin heal more easily, remember to use an all natural aloe product before and/or after sun exposure or reach for Burt’s Bees’ “After Sun Soother”.

It’s great to know that your body needs sunshine in order to make Vitamin D, a hormone (not really a vitamin at all) that is a part of building your bones and muscles. So enjoy the sun, rather than fear it, but remember that pain from a sunburn is your body’s way of reminding you that you’ve gone too far and need to protect your skin better in the future.

Bring light layers of clothing that you can cover up with.

Oh, and here’s a cool tip… eat fresh tomatoes and dark leafy greens, they also help your body protect itself from burning!   

Bring on the SUN  🙂   

Liisa.

I love the new trend that ‘STRONG is the new SEXY’.  I’ve always felt that way; in high school, the boys who always caught my eye had huge shoulders, bright eyes, great skin and loved endurance sports.  Being Canadian, I was probably unconsciously looking for someone who could kill a bear and drag it home for me to cook for him 🙂  Regardless of the reason, my point is, you can talk about butts all day but I won’t even bother to look unless your shoulders say “yup, I’m strong”… “I can handle the bear”. 

This is becoming an expectation for men looking at women too and I LOVE it!  It’s a big reason why lululemon has exploded onto the scene.  Women not only want to be thinner, they want to be strong now too.  They are quickly realizing that you CAN’T get stronger without getting healthier too.  You can’t grow muscle while living on processed foods.

Let me define healthy in case you think THIN means healthy.  Healthy means you can run a mile in less than 10 minutes (probably much less).  Healthy means you can eat fruits, vegetables, lean meats, nuts and seeds, and PLENTY of water for weeks on end and not feel like you’re sacrificing anything because you don’t have a bag of Oreos in your cupboard.  Healthy means you are mindful of what you put in your mouth because you know that the quality of what you put in will determine the quality of what you have to put out into your thoughts, actions and words that day.  Healthy means you can speak positively about yourself, your loved ones, your life experiences and the world.  It also means you love to move.  Healthy means, well, healthy; Optimal physical, mental, and social well being.

Back to SKINNY FAT.  You can fit into a size zero and still be fat.  Yes, I said it.  Skinny Fat means your body composition is made more of fat than lean muscle.  Want to see a Skinny Fat person, go to Starbucks.  You can find plenty of them in fast food chains too but I wouldn’t recommend you walk into those, so head to Starbucks for a cup of tea and people watch for a few minutes. 

Here’s why: Skinny Fat people LOVE SUGAR!  They live for it.  I call their drink of choice ‘the sugar covered caffeine snack’ and they drink them by the Venti load.

The trend of Strong being the new Sexy is putting our focus back on what makes us attracted to another person.  Genetically speaking, we’re attracted to the person we can best pass our genes on with, and therefore help our children survive our environment (hence my strong man who can kill bear equals sexy definition). 

BUT (somehow) the media was able to convince us that skinny was sexy and then (somehow) we lost our minds and started eating foods that were made in factories rather than grown AND while at the same time we (somehow) decided to park ourselves in front of computers and televisions for the majority of our day and (not so surprisingly) our bodies started to morph into this weak, unhealthy version of ourselves.  Skinny Fat.

The solution? Ditch the sugar covered caffeine snacks, pick up a pair of running shoes, have a glass of water, crank out a few push-ups, re-fuel with some great food, and pair up with someone else who can keep you on track and maybe even help you to pass on your now healthier genes. 

It’s your life,

Love it!

Liisa.

Do you KEEP the promises you make with yourself?

This has been on my mind lately for a number of reasons.  We just started our Spring Cleanse in our office which means that around 20 of us are taking this next month to consciously look at the things we eat and drink on a daily basis and we have chosen to not eat any simple sugars, caffeine, alcohol, wheat, dairy or meat. 

Every time we do this, inevitably, some of us find it MUCH easier than others.  There are a lot of reasons for this but today I want to look at the impact our word has on our results. 

I believe that every time we say we will do something we are making a promise. 

Breaking a spoken promise with a friend can hurt your relationship; but, I bring this up because the effects of breaking the silent promises we make with ourselves can cause us sadness, irritability, anger, fear, depression and the need to want to numb oneself.

I see this frequently.  It comes out in new patient exam histories, patient consultations, conversations with friends, and yes, at our cleanse meetings. 

My dad is one of those people who when he says he will do something he just does it.  End of story.  Usually, as soon as the agreement or decision is made, he sets himself to doing it and WILL NOT STOP until it has been done.  This ethic oozes from him constantly and it’s impossible to not see the benefits of it.   I honestly can’t remember if I’ve ever heard him say “I can’t do that” once he has decided he could or would do something.  EVER. 

That brings me back to our cleanse.  I hear it often with our cleanse members…  I can’t give up my soda, I can’t cut out ALL of my coffee, I don’t think I can go a whole week without eating meat, I can’t stop eating wheat, I can’t, I can’t, I can’t.  Really?  Why not? 

How is it possible that your faith in yourself is so diminished?  I believe it is because you simply haven’t noticed often enough how many amazing things you CAN do.  Every time we keep a promise to ourselves, we build a foundation of TRUST with ourselves.  You keep a promise with a friend, the relationship grows; you keep one with yourself, and your esteem grows.  The more promises you keep, the greater your esteem. 

So today I want to challenge you to make and keep a promise with yourself.  Say you’re going to the gym and then actually GO; say that you’ll have a big salad for lunch and then actually EAT A SALAD; say that you’ll stop for a minute and breathe just for the sake that you’re worth the few extra moments of silence and then JUST BREATHE; tell someone you’ll call them back and then ACTUALLY CALL THEM BACK.

These are simple things but they’re also powerful messages that you get to tell yourself.  Make more conscious promises with yourself and then consciously keep them.  Start small but do this every day. 

You’ll be grateful you did… I promise.

It’s your life, LOVE it,

Dr. Liisa Hall

I almost burst into tears while adjusting yesterday but I was in too much shock to cry. 

I know that people live very differently than Andrew and I do; we all have different values and focuses in our lives, but this one struck a nerve because it had to do with a value that I believe we all need to have. 

This one’s all about FOOD.  So here’s what happened:  A patient told me that she goes grocery shopping only once a month.  ONCE a month!  I’m not being dramatic; my mouth dropped open, shock set in and I was literally speechless.  Think about that with me.  What lasts a month?  Nothing.  Well, nothing that is alive; nothing that has enzymes; nothing that has a full spectrum of vitamins, minerals, or phyto-nutrients.  Nothing lasts a month.  She doesn’t eat out… so what is she eating?

Here’s the deal.  I stop by a market or grocery store at least 3 times a week.  No, I have no more time than you, I just know how to get what I need and get out in 5-15 minutes, longer when I have the time and quite frankly, I enjoy taking the time to feel and smell the fruits and vegetables I buy.  I can’t really imagine being home without the option of grabbing and snacking on any one of 5-10 fruits or vegetables.  Even right now, I have on my counter some plums, granny smith apples, bananas, tomatoes, and limes.  My fridge has carrots, onions, lettuce, zucchini, summer squash, sweet potatoes, and celery and I feel like we’re hardly stocked! 

We throw out little to no food each week.  We eat a lot, probably 5-7 times a day, not because we should but just because it makes sense to us.  We expend energy all day long, our nerve systems release and uptake neuro-chemicals all day long (just like yours do) and we know that life depletes our energy so we exercise to stimulate our brains to create more energy that fuels our cells and helps them to continue repairing even more than they are breaking down.  After these workouts, we eat even more.  We know that without eating living food, we die. 

So when this lady said that she grocery shops on a monthly basis, I immediately saw the freezer full of TV dinners, the bags of snack foods, cans of who knows what and boxes of cereal.  Essentially, I saw sugar covered sugar with added salt and unhealthy fats.  She deserve better than this.  Much better.  So do you. 

I want to inspire you to change if this sounds familiar.  So please take a trip by your local market or grocery store today and buy an orange, apple, pineapple (whatever you want) and while you peel it, smell it, enjoy the life within it, revel in the fact that this amazing fruit will give you life, can help your nerve system start firing better, digesting better, thinking better.  Food is love. 

Love yourself by feeding yourself well,

Dr. Liisa Hall

 Aaaaahhhhh, I feel soooo much better.  Thanks.

 

For those of you wanting to do the SPRING CLEANSE with us, here is more information:

WHO:

Open to all HFC practice members, family, and the public.  We strongly recommend that you bring a buddy, it will help you to get healthy and STAY ON TRACK! 

WHAT:

THE CLEANSE IS a four week Doctor led Kidney, Liver, and Digestive System Cleanse.  The Cleanse is all food based and no supplements will need to be purchased. 

 Drs. Andrew and Liisa Hall will lead the group through 5 weekly meetings (over 4 weeks – March 22nd to April 19th), regular e-mails, Facebook updates, and phone/text support as needed.  You will receive a binder packed full of information on cleansing as well as plenty of great, healthy new recipes.  In addition, current practice members may increase their adjustments (recommended).  Guests may receive a complete spinal evaluation FREE of charge ($255 savings).

You will receive very clear information regarding what to eat and what to avoid.  Most importantly, you will receive the support and accountability to not only follow through, but exceed at creating a healthier body!  Many participants doing The Cleanse have lost weight including as much as 20 pounds in the 4 weeks. 

WHEN:

5 Meetings over 4 weeks:  March 22nd and 29th, April 5th, 12th, and 19th (all Tuesdays) from 5:30-6:30pm.  Meetings can be missed but it is not recommended. 

WHERE:

At Hall Family Chiropractic: 47 Elm Street, Danvers.   Ph 978-646-0010

WHY:

This is the healthiest and most enlightening way to create a better body in a short amount of time!  Commonly, cleanse participants will comment that their energy levels improve dramatically, digestion improves, body pain reduces, skin is healthier, they have less dependence on food, a clearer head, more even emotions, weight loss and improved stamina. 

PRICING:

New Cleansers:  $125 each and $200 for a couple (includes friends or other family members).  We strongly recommend having a buddy; it is less expensive, a LOT easier and more FUN!

Returning Cleansers:  $75 each.

WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO LOSE?

SIGN UP NOW; MEETING SIZE WILL BE LIMITED.

Hall Family Chiropractic – 47 Elm street, Danvers, MA

978-646-0010

It’s Your life,

Love IT 🙂  Dr. Liisa.

So many exciting things have been happening at Hall Family Chiropractic lately and I think I finally felt it all on our Valentine’s Day Patient Appreciation Day! 

We had intended to just love on all our great patients that day and share with them (you) how much you all mean to us… what happened instead is that I simply felt overwhealmed by YOUR love and appreciation!  Thank you soooo sincerely for that, you all are such amazing people and we feel so blessed to be in Danvers where we can call you our family. 

The morning before Valentine’s Day, Andrew and I launched “Dr. You” our very own radio show that is on North Shore FM 104.9.  We’re on every Sunday now at 7:30am.  It is SO MUCH FUN!  If you’re not in the area (or up at 7:30 on Sundays 🙂 no worries, you can listen to the PodCasts at www.northshore1049.c0m.  Just click on PodCasts and select the show “Dr. You” from the list.  They will be available the Tuesday following the Sunday show.   Please give us your feedback too if you want, we’d love to make the show as applicabel to you and your life as possible.

“The Cleanse” will also be starting shortly (Tuesday March 22nd) so the buzz in the office has begun.  I enjoyed watching Oprah recently when over 300 of her staffers went Vegan for a week.  We won’t be vegan on our cleanse (although you may choose to do so, it’s surprisingly do-able); however, many of you will get to experience conscious eating in a new way.  Very fun and very rewarding.  AND, we’ll never starve you or make you take “cleansing supplements”.  Our cleanse is ALL about eating REAL food. 

Stay posted, we have sooooo much in store for you this year!

It’s your life, LOVE it.

Dr.  Liisa.

Did you know that it takes only 21 days to make a new habit? 

Most people who have quit smoking know that those first 21 days are possibly the hardest, BUT if they can just keep focused on their goal of better health and living a smoke-free life, they’ll have broken one of the most difficult additions we know of.

It’s how your brain works and, yes, it’s a rule.  In fact it’s such a powerful rule, that I recommend you start using it today.  The patterns we repeat consistently (over a 21 day period) become neurological programs that we then run on a daily basis.  You are writing programs all the time, you just may be unconscious of this process.  Today, I’m giving you the instruction manual to start writing better programs.

Following the rule of 21, Andrew and I have built some incredible and healthy habits that have turned into the healthy lifestyle we now enjoy every day.  One of our “21 day rules” even kept our marriage strong when we needed to live apart for nearly 2 years.  The rule was that we never went more than 21 days without seeing each other.  We made the rule because we didn’t want to ‘program in’ a life without each other present.  And, because it was a rule, we made it happen and we both know that it was a huge factor in creating the strong marriage we have today.

Making rules often seems like it will create limitations but you’ll find the opposite is true.  What are your rules?  We just passed the first 21 day mark of 2011.  Are you still focused on your New Year’s Resolutions?  If not, revisit them.  Do you still value them or do they require some editing or deleting? 

Great rewards sometimes require great sacrifice.  Here’s a list of some habits to do for 21 days that offer some surprisingly HUGE benefits.  Whatever you decide to do for the next 21 days, make sure it feels right for you and if you miss a day, you need to start back at day 1; it’s called the 21 Day RULE for a reason.  When you get to day 21, congratulate yourself and move on to the next one

    Drink 8 ounces of water every day for 21 days

    Eat breakfast every day for 21 days

    Stop snacking within 2 hours of bedtime every day for 21 days

    Do spinal warm-up exercises every day for 21 days

    Go for a walk, do push-ups, or any exercise you chose every day for 21 days

    Eat a salad with dinner every day for 21 days

    Repeat a positive statement about yourself every day for 21 days

    Do 5-10 minutes of deep breathing exercises every day for 21 days

    Visualize your DREAM life for a few minutes every day for 21 days

    Meditate for ANY amount of time every day for 21 days

    Anything you choose….. every day for 21 days

The funny thing is, 21 days starts to fly past you and you’ll realize that this is easy.  Just focus on choosing habits that you really want to commit to.

After all, it’s your life, LOVE it!

Dr. Liisa Hall 🙂

Did you know that your health can be largely determined by looking at the average health of the people you spend the most time with?

Think about the people you spend the most time with.  What do they eat?  When do they eat?  How often do they sweat?  Do they drink enough water? Do they go to church or have a supportive social group? What does their skin look like?  How is their eye contact?  What about their handshake?  It makes sense doesn’t it?  I’m willing to bet that you’re a lot like them.  Is that a good thing?  That’s up to you.

No, you can’t tell everything about someone based on one or two of these factors but believe it or not, they are all indicators of health. 

My husband’s and my Chiropractic practice has become known for being a place for new friends to meet and old friends to meet up.  I LOVE THAT!  It means that there is a movement toward living better quality (and quantity) lives and we get to participate in it every day.  This is because Chiropractic is the world’s largest natural health and healing profession.  Our practice is not really about low back pain at all.  But that’s another blog…

For now, look at the health standard you are living at today.  How would you grade yourself physically, socially, mentally, financially, emotionally, and vocationally?  If you are happy, be proud of yourself and invite someone new to your social group to help them out too  If you’re needing to stretch, consider trying Chiropractic and join a healthy group like ours, or add a new healthy habit that suits you.

We live in a time and society in which we can spend an entire day sitting in front of our computers and think we’ve been active and socializing all day.  The truth is, we bond and grow and learn best by actually being in the company of others and participating in some form of activity. 

Am I really about to suggest that you join a bowling league?  After all those years I laughed at my mom’s love of her bowling team, I finally think I’ve realized what she knew all along; we need to play, laugh, and move together.  So if it’s bowling for you, great!  If it’s joining a CrossFit club, great!  Maybe it’s walking with a few friends, running an organized 5K, joining a pick-up game of basketball at a local club, or even a Zumba or Yoga class, no worries, BUT my only warning is… MAKE SURE IT’S SOMETHING YOU ENJOY. 

After all, it’s your life, LOVE it 🙂

Dr. Liisa Hall

http://www.HallFamilyChiropractic.com

I LOVE the 2 times each year in which my husband, Andrew, and I participate in a 30 day health Cleanse.  No, it is not a fast, which means we never feel hungry or unsatisfied food-wise; it means we get to look very closely at what we put into our mouths each day (or each hour of the day) and we consciously decide what constitutes food and what is just filler. 

I’ve probably done this particular cleanse a dozen times and have found that EVERY time I participate, I do something exciting that I’ve never done before and I end up growing not only in physical health but spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and even socially. 

Who knew that by cutting out a little sugar, caffeine, alcohol and a few others would be so liberating?!

The first response I get from people about the cleanse is either “Wow, how can I participate in this?” or “Oh no, I could NEVER give up my coffee!”  Perhaps this is why psychologists often divide the world into Doers and Don’ters. 

Regardless, I think everyone CAN do a cleanse like this because its only 30 days, 4 weeks, no biggie, AND you get to experience better energy, lose unhealthy weight, and refire your nervous system which means you get some focus and rational thought points back.  (Don’t we all need this these days? 🙂 )

We are 3 weeks into this Fall’s Cleanse and already I’ve been sleeping better, have more energy, feel more positive about the world and my place on it, and you know what?  I ran my first 5K last Sunday!  I have to say my first because it was so much fun that I know there will be more!

Look at the health standard you are living at today; if you are happy, be proud of yourself and invite someone new to your social group so you can help them out too, if you’re needing to stretch, consider trying Chiropractic, joining a cleanse group like ours, or add a new healthy habit that suits you.

After all, it’s your live, LOVE it!

Dr. Liisa Hall.         

www.HallFamilyChiropractic.com      ~ for the well adjusted life!

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