No matter how hard you try to remain in good health, certain parts of the body can experience medical issues that are out of your control. One such area is the urinary tract. Fortunately, you can take steps to fix these issues, but before you can do that, you need to be aware of them. That’s why we’re taking the time to cover some of the more common urinary problems you should look out for, regardless of your age.

Sudden or Frequent Urges To Urinate

If you regularly experience the sudden need to urinate or go more often than you should, you could be experiencing an overactive bladder or urinary incontinence. While both issues are fairly easy to fix, especially in younger individuals, the problem with them is the fact that most people don’t address the issue when they have it.

Incontinence, in particular, goes undiagnosed quite often. Some of this is due to the fact that a few of the primary types of incontinence aren’t that bad, but if any of them are left untreated, they will eventually get worse. That’s why it’s not a bad idea to track how often you use the restroom during the day or pay attention to how sudden the need to urinate is for you.

Any Form of Pain When Urinating

If you experience any sort of pain when urinating, chances are that you have a urinary tract infection (UTI). This problem is much more important to deal with right away. If it spreads to your bladder or kidneys, it can cause permanent damage to your body. Most of the time, antibiotics will remedy this issue, but if they don’t, you could have interstitial cystitis on top of it, which also affects the bladder.

Bloody or Cloudy Urine

Out of all the urinary problems you should look out for, bloody or cloudy urine are some of the most obvious symptoms you’ll come across. Blood in the urine isn’t very common, but most of the time, it occurs when you exercise or engage in sexual activity too vigorously. If that’s not the cause, then it’s likely something much more serious, like kidney or bladder cancer.

If your urine is cloudier than normal, this is probably a symptom of having too much alkaline in your system, which is a cause of too much acidity in your kidneys. This is common if you’re dehydrated but can also occur if you have an infection or kidney leakage.

Pain or Discomfort in the Abdomen

Not all problems come directly from the urinary tract, though. Something else to be aware of is any pain or discomfort in your abdominal area. While this could be the cause of any number of problems, if you’ve been having some of these other issues lately, it could mean you have kidney stones. While tiny ones might not cause a person too many problems, these stones can cause a lot of pain. If this happens to you, you’ll want to seek medical attention immediately.

 

admin @ Inspire Your Journey

Running continues to be a popular way to improve and maintain cardiovascular fitness while staying active. While the numerous benefits are overwhelming, it doesn’t overshadow the effects of the repetitive stress your body endures during the activity.

Runners may endure an injury at some point. It helps to know the most common types of running injuries, symptoms, and how to treat them to avoid worsening the experience.

Read on to discover the three most common injuries that affect runners.

Runner’s Knee

Also known as patellofemoral syndrome, runner’s knee typically refers to pain one would experience around the kneecap or in front of the knee. This injury can occur from the overuse of joints and soft tissues around the kneecap area.

A general weakness in the tendons around the knee can place you at a higher risk of developing runner’s knee. Pain symptoms may include uncomfortable or dull sensations in one or both knees and may worsen when you sit or exercise for prolonged periods.

Fortunately, with the help of your physician, you can treat patellofemoral pain using rehabilitation exercises, supportive braces, taping, and ice.

Achilles Tendonitis

This type of injury occurs when the tendons connecting your calf muscles and heels become inflamed. Many runners experience this injury with a heel strike or when their foot makes contact with the curb. You may also experience discomfort when running up the stairs or when you suddenly change direction.

You can develop Achilles tendonitis after increasing the intensity or distance of your running. Other causes of Achilles tendonitis can include tight calf muscles, incorrect footwear, and poor running form.

You can treat Achilles tendonitis by modifying your training schedule to lower training intensity, stretching your calf muscles prior to running, and using heel insoles and arch supports. Performing strength exercises to improve shock absorption while running allows your muscles and joints to handle the stress in the future.

Iliotibial Band (ITB) Syndrome

Lastly, Iliotibial Band Syndrome, otherwise known as ITB Syndrome, can occur when the repetitive friction of the band rubs against your leg bone. The ITB is an extended piece of connective tissue that runs from your hip to your knee and helps stabilize knee joints and surrounding tissues.

When injured, your IT band creates a sharp pain on the outside of your leg, typically above your kneecap. This injury can manifest as a tender sensation, making your leg sensitive to the touch and causing pain that worsens upon bending.

To treat this type of injury, use gentle exercises that strengthen your hip abductors and extensor muscles. You would also benefit from applying ice after runs and massaging the lateral knee.

Runners can log hundreds or thousands of miles per year; however, with distance comes the possibility of suffering an injury. It’s important to remain aware of the three most common running injuries and understand the proper recovery steps to take without delaying your fitness goals.

 

admin @ Inspire Your Journey

Diabetic neuropathy is a condition that occurs in people with diabetes and causes pain and numbness in the legs. It can be insidious, and the symptoms can gradually creep up on you if you aren’t careful. But how do you treat it for better health? Read on to find out.

What Is Diabetic Neuropathy?

Diabetic neuropathy is a form of nerve damage that occurs among people with diabetes as a result of glucose injuring nerves throughout the body. High blood sugar levels can also cause damage to the small blood vessels that nourish your nerves with oxygen and nutrients. Damage shows itself in the nerves of the legs and feet. Damaged nerves typically stop sending messages appropriately or send them at the wrong times.

What Are the Symptoms?

Diabetic neuropathy has quite a few symptoms, some of which don’t affect the legs and feet. The most common symptoms are shooting pains, tingling, and burning in the hands and feet. Nausea, vomiting, and constipation can also occur. You could start dealing with urinary problems or issues with sexual function. Dizziness when you attempt to get up too quickly or change positions can be very common.

However, diabetic neuropathy is most often characterized by a sharp pain in the legs and feet and numbness that occurs in these areas. This is particularly true for the soles of the feet. Because of this, many people who promote diabetic foot care recommend you check your feet daily for any cuts or bruises.

How Do You Treat It?

There’s no singular treatment for diabetic neuropathy, but there are a few things you can do to lessen its effects. Getting early treatment is a must. The moment you feel tingling, pain, or numbness in your hands and feet that persists for several days, give your doctor a call so that you can begin treating the symptoms. You can manage your glucose levels by eating well and avoiding products with sugar in them. This is simple enough, as your entire health regiment will be centered around this. Exercising can also help mitigate diabetic neuropathy.

Finally, it might be a good idea to avoid smoking. Smoking damages the walls of the arteries and decreases circulation, which contributes to diabetic neuropathy. These are all great ways to treat diabetic neuropathy for health.

In short, diabetic neuropathy may not be reversible, but its symptoms can be treated. It’s important that you don’t give up on yourself; you can still reduce symptoms through diet changes, exercise, and other lifestyle changes.

 

admin @ Inspire Your Journey

Increased flexibility improves your mobility, reduces your risk of muscle strain, and can help improve your overall mood by making you feel more comfortable in your body. Furthermore, if you want to develop your strength, enhancing your flexibility is an important part of maintaining your body’s balance as you transform.

Yet despite these benefits, many people lose flexibility over time due to a sedentary lifestyle. Build stability and resilience with the following tips for improving your body’s flexibility.

Avoid Prolonged Sitting

In modern life, people spend lots of time sitting at a desk, in a car, or on a couch while watching a screen. Research links prolonged sitting with many negative health consequences, including metabolic syndrome and an increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease. And while you sit, some muscles lengthen while others shorten. This is why prolonged sitting can result in less flexibility.

Perhaps the easiest way to interrupt periods of sitting is to stand up every 30 minutes or every 20 minutes if possible. You should also try to walk around more often. For example, talk on the phone while walking around. If you spend lots of time at a desk, consider getting a standing desk so that you don’t have to sit for so long. These simple changes can improve your flexibility.

Exercise

The next tip for improving your body’s flexibility is to exercise. You can consider doing specific workouts, such as yoga, to achieve this goal. With yoga, you stretch your muscles and improve their range of motion, leading to greater flexibility throughout your body with just a few weeks of consistent exercise.

You can also use exercise equipment that improves your flexibility, such as stall bars. Stall bars have a configuration similar to a ladder, and you can pull and push on the rungs to stretch your muscles and improve their elasticity. People with varying degrees of flexibility, including gymnasts and people in physical therapy, have used this equipment to achieve their goals.

Do Static and Dynamic Stretches

Finally, stretching your muscles is a great way to improve your flexibility. You can stretch just to stretch or as part of your pre- and post-workout routine. Static stretches involve stretching a muscle group and holding the position for at least 15 seconds. If you touch the tips of your toes with your fingertips and hold the position, this is static stretching.

Another type of stretching is dynamic stretching, and as you might guess, it involves more movement. With dynamic stretching, you use gentle movements to stretch multiple muscle groups and gradually increase your range of motion. One example of a dynamic stretch is holding your arms out from the sides of your body and moving them in circles, starting with small circular movements and gradually making larger circles.

 

admin @ Inspire Your Journey

We could all retire if we had a dollar for every time someone told us to sit up straight. Though there’s good intention behind every postural reminder, the science behind it further drives it home the fact that we should sit up straight. Keeping your back in alignment supports many systems in the body. An easy way to understand this is recognizing that your body is one extensive system with many small functions. Let’s discuss the benefits of improving your posture once and for all and put an end to the nagging!

Back Relief

Your body should remain in a neutral position, with your pelvis, torso, and head stacked in alignment. Positioning your head too far forward or tilting your hips can strain the supporting muscles in a way that wreaks havoc on your back. An easy fix is wearing a waist trainer to realign your body and release some of the tension you’re holding.

Reduces Headaches

Dropping your shoulders and head can induce unnecessary tension and headaches. Spend a few weeks adjusting your shoulders, and see if that improves your headaches. It’s always best to consult your primary care physician if you experience severe or debilitating headaches, but if you experience them randomly and feel that something else is triggering them, consider monitoring your posture.

Improves Mood

One of the most significant benefits of improving your posture once and for all is that proper posture plays an enormous role in your mood. If you’re constantly slouching and your head hangs, you may experience a depressive state. Some people don’t need medical intervention but rather just a few tweaks in their posture.

Better Breathing

Poor posture is often linked to lousy breathing techniques, and vice versa. Solid core breathing fills your lungs deeply and controls the nervous system. But if you’re slouched and not supportive of full lungs, you cannot breathe as well. Standing tall and allowing your lungs to fill with air is an excellent way to work on your posture and breathwork.

Improves Digestion

Poor posture can also impair your digestion. If you’re not erect and neutrally positioned, your digestion slows down. The less compression and strain you put on your internal functions, the better chance they have at working for you rather than against you.

There’s no doubt that good posture can do many things for you. So if you’re experiencing anything odd, discuss all your options with your health-care provider, and see if you can make any postural tweaks in the meantime.

 

Authored by Admin @ Inspire Your Journey

If you are one of the millions of people worldwide who suffers from chronic back pain, you may be frustrated about how to treat it. So many “solutions” are only temporary! While your pain may need lifelong management, you have plenty of options besides OTC painkillers. Let’s look at some more powerful ways to relieve chronic back pain and improve your quality of life.

Engage Your Core

Your abdominal and back muscles do a lot of work keeping you upright during the day. Weak core muscles can lead to a slouched or hunched back, which you already know can be painful. Integrate some gentle core work into daily exercises. As you build strength, your core muscles will support your spine, and you’ll stand straighter.

Improve Your Sleep

Pain is a leading cause of insomnia. It’s hard to sleep when your back is killing you. However, restorative sleep is a boon to muscular health. Talk to your doctor about how your chronic pain and sleep issues interact. Your doctor can suggest treatments and therapies to improve your quality of sleep and help your muscles relax at night.

Have a Soak

Hydrotherapy is a powerful way to massage and soothe aching muscles. Most gyms and health clubs have a hot tub or spa for this very reason! A half-hour soak is a great way to unwind and recover after physical exertion. Adding a hot tub to your backyard will encourage you to practice daily self-care and give your sore back the TLC it needs.

Clear Your Mind

Living with consistent underlying pain affects your mood. Your brain may zero in on your aching back and focus on it all day. To help loosen up your body, start with the mind. Add daily meditation to your routine, even if it’s just for 15 minutes. Focus on your breathing and let your mind rest. When thoughts about pain enter your head, don’t push them away. Acknowledge them and let them pass. Practicing mindfulness will help relax your whole body and improve how you think about your pain.

Don’t let chronic back pain dominate your life. You are in charge of your health, and you have plenty of options to relieve that discomfort. Take care of your mind as well as your body, and they’ll work together to improve your condition over time. These powerful ways to relieve chronic back pain aren’t just temporary fixes—make these lifestyle changes now, and you’ll see a marked improvement in the long run.

 

Authored by Admin @ Inspire Your Journey

Making a morning smoothie is a great way to start your day. When you fill your cells with good nutrition, your energy lasts a long time. However, you may get tired of making the same smoothie over and over again. Here are some tips to spice up your recipe so it tastes fresh and new every morning. 

Choose A Good Base

The most common base for making smoothies is milk or water. If you want more flavor and a smoother texture, milk will provide these characteristics. If you want less calories, water is the best choice. To experience different flavor profiles, plant based milk is another great option. Oat, almond, or macadamia nut milk are superb choices. Compared to cow’s milk, plant based milk has less saturated fat and no cholesterol.      

Add Natural Sweeteners

Fruit and maple syrup can be used to sweeten your smoothie and make it delicious. Fresh, frozen, or dried fruit are all good options. For fresh fruit, apples and bananas are wonderful additions. Dried apricots or figs work well after soaking in water overnight so the pieces are soft and pliable for the blender. Frozen wild blueberries are the favorite. When using maple syrup, choose the Grade A Pure which is the healthiest and most natural variety.  

Supercharge with Supplements

To supercharge your smoothie, supplements can be added to really pack a punch. For starters, protein powder is typically included to boost the protein content and nutritional value. Vitamin C powder will support your immune system. And adding a high quality probiotic powder will nourish your gut flora.  

A Few Final Thoughts

For health and wellness, smoothies are an invaluable way to begin your day. Ingredients matter so choose wisely. A great base with natural sweeteners and high quality supplements will provide sustained energy levels and curb sugar cravings. Please reach out and we will be happy to share our recommendations.   

 

Authored by Inspire Your Journey   

It can be challenging to stay active during the wintertime. As the temperature gets colder and the sun sets earlier in the day, finding the motivation to get some exercise can be a real challenge.

Nevertheless, exercising in the winter is not impossible, and it can be enjoyable. With that in mind, here are some tips for staying active during the winter.

Walk Through Nature

As long as the weather conditions aren’t dangerous, taking a brisk walk through a local nature preserve can be a relaxing and safe form of exercise. You can take in the scenery around you while maintaining physical activity that keeps the blood flowing. The best part is that it’s free and you can do it anywhere, making it an effective exercising method while you travel.

You can do this in a park, forest, or on the sidewalk in your local neighborhood. No matter where you choose, don’t stay out too late so that drivers and other people can see you walking in the street.

Ride Your Bike Indoors and Outdoors

Another way to get cardio exercise is to ride your bike. Although it requires extra caution, you can still ride it outdoors if the road conditions aren’t slippery.

However, if it’s too windy or cold for you to ride outside, you can hook up your bike to a stationary set to ride it indoors. Nonetheless, there are still ways for you to get your ride in when bad weather is looming. Riding indoors can be just as fun as outdoors, especially if you watch a fun movie or TV show while you ride.

Pick Up Some Chores Around the House

Finally, if you want to expend some energy inside, tidying up your home is excellent for your body. Cleaning activities such as vacuuming your floor, wiping down surfaces, and sweeping up dust with a broom are all labor-intensive activities that will keep your body moving. Also, as you check off tasks from your list of chores, you will take plenty of steps up and down your stairs throughout your home.

Overall, many activities can help you stay fit when the snow starts to fall. Now that you know some tips for staying active during the winter, you can look forward to your summer body a few months early!

 

Authored by Inspire Your Journey

Sinus infections can be annoying, stubborn, and downright painful. They often mimic symptoms of the common cold or flu virus. Although contagious colds and flu can often bring about an infection, sinusitis in itself isn’t transmissible from person to person. But if it didn’t come from someone else, where did this painful condition come from? Let’s look at some of the most common causes of sinus infections; when you know the cause, you can more easily brainstorm a solution.

Dry Air

When there isn’t enough humidity in the air, especially as we approach winter, your sinus membranes can dry out and crack. Germs settle easily into those cracks and can cause nasty infections. If dryness in the air is causing you discomfort, get a humidifier and run it several times a day, including when you sleep.

Seasonal or Year-Round Allergies

Allergens in the air can cause inflammation in your nasal passages—and when those passages are swollen and inflamed, mucus can’t drain out of them as easily. People who struggle with allergies, whether seasonal or year-round, are more likely to suffer from chronic sinus infections. Ask your doctor what you can do about chronic sinusitis that results from allergies.

Nasal Polyps

Nasal polyps are excess tissue growths that make their home in your nasal passages. As with any other blockage, polyps can prevent mucus from draining out your sinuses, causing infections. Polyps don’t go away without surgical intervention, but after your surgeon removes them, you’ll breathe more freely all year long.

Poor Sleep Quality

Proper sleep habits keep your immune system alert and fully functional. When you don’t sleep enough, or if you toss and turn, your body becomes more vulnerable to all kinds of illnesses and infections. Do what you can to ensure a regular night’s sleep, whether that means taking melatonin or practicing meditation.

Facial Trauma

We’ve learned now that sinus infections crop up commonly in folks with narrow nasal passages, whether from polyps or allergies. A deviated septum is another common cause of sinus infections, as it restricts airflow to those sinuses. Any trauma to your face that affects the nose can also affect its ability to circulate air and drain mucus.

This cold and flu season, mitigate the spread of germs by practicing good hygiene. If you end up with a sinus infection anyway, it could have come from one of these most common causes of sinus infections! Be proactive about your health to keep yourself breathing freely.

 

Authored by Inspire Your Journey

As time goes on, your collection of goods grows alongside it. Perhaps you’ve settled down, started a family, and accumulated a vast number of belongings in your home. So, when the time comes, you decide to clean out your closets and drawers. You place it all in trash bags and get ready to toss it away.

Instead of tossing it all, why not go through and donate it to charity? Having excess clutter in your home is not only strenuous on your mental health, but can also affect your physical health. Instead, do some good and give your unwanted goods to others in need. Here are the benefits of donating to your local charity.

Emotional and Mental Benefits

The concept of being surrounded by clutter can make often make a person feel claustrophobic. Having an excess buildup of stuff can affect mental health, leading to frustration, stress, and depression. So, one of the health benefits of donating to your local charity is taking care of your emotional and mental needs.

So, take the time out of your day to sort out your belongings and bring them to your local charity. Once it’s all cleared out, you’ll feel a weight lift off your shoulders. You’ll have the chance to breathe a sigh of relief. Additionally, you’ll have more room to breathe and flow throughout your home.

Physical Benefits

When it comes to taking care of yourself, you want to try everything in your power to stay healthy. It’s no surprise that you can end up sick occasionally, but clutter accumulation can increase bacterial growth and debris buildup.

As a result, you’re more likely to get sick, spread diseases, and develop allergies. Also, having clutter in your home can make it more dangerous for fire hazards, air quality, and risk of suffocation. So, prioritize your safety and health by bettering your living environment.

Social Benefits

As you research your local charities and foundations, keep on the lookout for social gatherings, as well. By meeting others who share the same passions as you, you’re likely to make connections and learn about other charity events.

By association, if you have friends and family who see your charitable acts, they’ll want to partake. They’ll feel more inclined to give back to the community and spread positive actions onto others. It creates a ripple effect in helping others.

Don’t let your perfectly good belongings end up in a landfill. Give back instead and help others that need an extra hand. You never know who might need it, and it will help you, too.

 

Authored by Inspire Your Journey