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Recipe: Super Summer Slim Down Smoothie

While summer’s almost over, it’s not over yet. What better way to enjoy the last weeks of the season than with a delicious smoothie that celebrates all the flavors of the season and aids in your efforts to stay healthy & fit this summer.

This super smoothie recipe will cool you off, give your body lots of good vitamins and antioxidants, and keep your slim-down going strong. Oh, and it doesn’t hurt that it’s awesomely delicious, either!

Note: This smoothie is filling and nutritious enough to serve as a meal replacement for breakfast or lunch. In other words, don’t add this one to your diet meal plan as an afternoon or evening snack, or you might just counteract the slimming effect of the smoothie.

Super Summer Slim-Down Smoothie

½ medium banana (ripe)

1 cup frozen mixed berries

¼ cup low-fat Greek yogurt (get plain for no added sugar)

¾ cup milk (soy, almond, skim, rice—your choice)

2 tablespoons dark chocolate chips

Optional: 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

Chuck everything into your blender and give it a whirl until smooth and well-mixed. If you need to thin it, add 3 to 5 ice cubes. It makes 1 large glass of delicious, cold, refreshing smoothie.

How Does This Smoothie Help Your Slim-Down Efforts?

Bananas are filling. They also add a natural sweetness, but are bland enough to mix well with just about any flavor. Their texture helps with the creamy consistency. And they are a natural source of energy. They provide a steady stream of energy, enough to get you through a 45-minute workout or that after-lunch slump that hits like a ton of bricks every afternoon. Unlike caffeine or sugar, there’s no crash or hard comedown from a banana high, either. Let’s not forget that some of this energy comes from carbs, but a great deal of it comes from all the vitamin A, iron, phosphorous and potassium that bananas contain.

Berries are filled with antioxidants. They are also naturally sweet and high in water content. Including a mix of berries ensures that your smoothie will be packed with vitamin C and phytochemicals of all sorts. They also add some fiber to your smoothie, helping you to keep feeling full longer. Plus, fresh berries are the ultimate summertime treat.

Greek yogurt is a great low-fat, low-carb source of protein. It’s also filled with bone-strengthening calcium and belly-friendly probiotics. Greek yogurt has been shown to aid in weight loss, and can help reduce bloating and gas.

Whether you choose soy milk, almond milk, or just ordinary skim milk, adding milk to your smoothies is another great way to add tummy-pleasing protein and calcium.  You need protein to stave off hunger pangs longer.

Monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) have been shown to be vital in weight loss efforts, especially in fighting belly and midriff fat. Sources of MUFAs are dark chocolate, nuts and nut butters, flaxseed oil, and avocado. Adding some dark chocolate chips to your slimdown smoothie aids you in your slimming efforts, making your smoothie just that more effective in doing what you want it to do. Plus, this ingredient (and the optional pure vanilla extract) makes this smoothie taste like a treat—without any of the guilt.

Erchonia Launches Marketing Library for Customers

 

 

 

The Erchonia Marketing Portal is designed to assist doctors & practitioners with promoting their Erchonia devices. We offer materials for purchase or for download that can be used “as is”, these are print ready files. The print ready files can be personalized with your office information. We also offer for download Erchonia product pictures & logos to create your own material. All use of the Erchonia Marketing Portal materials is governed by the Terms of Use. Our Terms of Use available at www.erchonia.com/terms-of-use .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How 3LT Can Help Our Equine Friend

Humans domesticated horses millennia ago, changing the way our ancestors traveled, fought, and survived. They are majestic, beautiful creatures built for speed and power.

Sadly, one of the most serious and devastating diseases affecting horses, ponies, and other equine animals is laminitis. Let’s take a closer look at laminitis and how low-level laser therapy can give our equine companions a leg up.

What is Laminitis?

Laminitis describes a condition wherein the laminae—the tissues bonding the hoof wall to the pedal bone in a horse’s hoof—become weakened and inflamed from disruptions in blood flow, leading to tears in the structure supporting the pedal bone within the hoof. Laminitis typically occurs in a horse’s front feet. The condition is caused by various physical and metabolic issues, including:

  • An excessive intake of grain or grass
  • High levels of insulin
  • Enlargement of the pars intermedia in the pituitary gland
  • Impact from riding on hard surfaces
  • Stress from long distance travel

This can result in tremendous pain, lameness, and deterioration in the hoof. Left untreated, laminitis can cause the pedal bone to rotate and point downwards. In worst cases, the pedal bone will penetrate through the hoof wall.

Laminitis greatly reduces a horse’s usefulness, and many horse owners are forced to put down the horse to prevent further suffering.

Treating Laminitis

Many traditional treatments are expensive and time-consuming and don’t guarantee full recovery. These include changing your horse’s diet, providing greater hoof care, and moving your horse to a different enclosure featuring deep shavings or sand. Severe cases wherein the pedal bone has sunken through the hoof require surgical procedures involving tendon release, but this can put the horse at risk of infection or cause damage to surrounding structures.

Low-level laser therapy has been used in humans to treat joint pain, edema, soreness, and wounds, but veterinarians have extended these laser treatments to horses suffering from laminitis. Studies show that the photon energy in a low-level laser stimulates blood vessels in a horse’s foot, promoting greater circulation, better tissue nutrition, and ultimately faster healing. Laser therapy also greatly reduces the chance of infection or damage to surrounding areas as the procedure is entirely non-invasive.

Animal Health Options, a purveyor of innovative and effective supplements for animal wellness since 1990, has found success in incorporating low-level laser therapy into its treatment for laminitis. Horses undergo low-level laser sessions two to three times a week. This is coupled with:

  • A restrictive diet to reduce weight and make up for insulin resistance
  • Plenty of lying down to keep pressure off the affected feet
  • Visits with a farrier to trim hooves to correct the angle of the feet

Preventing Laminitis

One of the best ways to treat laminitis is to prevent it from happening altogether. While you can’t always predict your horse’s health, you can control parts of his environment, primarily his diet. Too much grain or lush green grass leads to excessive sugars stored in the hind gut. When these sugars are absorbed, the horse develops hyperinsulinemia (an overload of insulin), which can trigger laminitis. A bad diet can also lead to obesity, putting more pressure on your horse’s hooves. To keep your horse’s diet in check:

  • Feed your horse a high fiber, forage-based diet, comprising a mixture of mature grass, hay, and alfalfa. Vegetable oils can be included in this diet for added calories.
  • Carefully manage grazing. Considering grazing your horse at night, when sugar levels are lowest.
  • Avoid hard feed unless your horses are performing hard work.

Maintain a regular hoof trimming schedule for good hoof health. Your horse may also need specialist shoeing for proper support.

The Skinny on Fat-Fighting Foods: 6 Foods to Help You Lose Weight

People are under the common misconception that staying healthy means eating less. Far from causing fat loss, skipping meals actually causes numerous health problems, including:

  • A slowed-down metabolism
  • Deteriorating muscles
  • General fatigue
  • Impaired concentration

Contrary to what you think, eating can help you lose weight. It’s just a matter of finding the right foods to eat. Let’s take a look at some foods that can help you shed pounds and improve your health.

  1. Eggs

Doctors, dieticians, and scientists seem to have seasonal debates about eggs and their validity in the nutrition realm, particularly in the area of cholesterol, but you can rest easy. In fact, eggs are good for you and can help you stay thin. One study published by the International Journal of Obesity found that participants who had eaten two eggs for breakfast for eight weeks lost 65% more weight than those who ate bagels for breakfast.

While most dieters eat just the egg whites, the yolks contain half the protein of an egg—and a lot of the nutrients. The high protein content is what makes eggs so great. One large egg contains about six grams of protein and nine amino acids with only 77 calories and five grams of fat. That keeps you satisfied for longer and prevents unhealthy snacking. The proteins also stimulate the release of glucagon, which aids in metabolism and can help burn belly fat.

Along with protein, eggs are rich in:

  • Vitamins A, B12, and C
  • Iron
  • Phosphorous
  • Selenium
  1. Almonds

Almonds are high-quality nuts that are rich in vitamin E and monounsaturated fats—the good kind of fat. Almonds are packed with fiber, keeping you full without adding extra calories. They contain magnesium and vitamin B2, which can combat stress, calm nerves, and boost your energy levels. Almonds also contain zinc to curb sugar cravings and oleic oils to curb hunger pangs. If that’s not enough, almonds are also good for your skin and hair.

Almonds also happen to be easy to include in your diet. Snack on a handful at your desk or sprinkle chopped almonds on your meal for added crunch and flavor.

  1. Chia Seeds

If you’re looking for fiber, you needn’t look any further. Chia seeds are extremely high in soluble fiber. This prevents the absorption of fat, lowers cholesterol, and stabilizes blood sugar levels. The high fiber acts like a sponge, allowing chia seeds to soak up to twenty times their weight in sugar and liquids. As the chia seeds plump up, they expand in your stomach, keeping you full for longer without the extra calories. They are also rich in calcium, iron, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Add chia seeds to your oatmeal or create a healthy pudding of chia seeds and unsweetened chocolate almond milk.

  1. Quinoa

Although it’s a grain, quinoa acts more like a vegetable and is a close relative of kale, spinach, and Swiss chard. High in fiber and protein, quinoa offers a sturdy foundation for healthy fullness while also offering plenty of vitamins and minerals, including iron and vitamin B12. Quinoa has a low glycemic index, so it won’t cause spikes in blood sugar. One serving of cooked quinoa only has about 172 calories.

The best part about quinoa: you can eat it with just about anything. Eat it plain, add it to veggies, salads, or consume with cinnamon, banana, and almond flakes for an oatmeal replacement. The possibilities with this gluten-free grain are endless.

  1. Grapefruit

Sweet and tangy, grapefruit is a great source of vitamin C and an antioxidant called lycopene, but these treats may also offer a helping hand in weight loss. One study conducted on mice found that daily grapefruit juice intake expedited weight loss, improved blood glucose, and controlled insulin levels.

Some studies suggest that the mere smell of grapefruit is enough to aid in weight loss, but feel free to go in for the real thing, raw or juiced.

  1. Yogurt

Yogurt offers a healthy dose of calcium, vitamin D, and protein to keep you full, but probiotics are the key fat-burning ingredient in yogurt. Consuming active bacteria may seem unpleasant, but probiotics are the type of germs that your body needs. They reduce the amount of fat your body absorbs and add flora to your gut that improve your digestion. Eat yogurt plain, add fruit, or use it for creamy sauces. Opt for an unsweetened Greek yogurt instead of regular if you can—Greek yogurt has almost twice the protein and fewer carbs and sodium than regular yogurt.

Food gives you the energy you need to live life to the fullest. Instead of depriving yourself, learn to eat the right things to keep your body healthy and fit. What are some of your favorite foods for weight loss?

 

Sources:

http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/weight-loss/eating/weight-loss-foods/

http://www.ahealthiermichigan.org/2014/08/23/two-eggs-in-the-morning-can-help-you-lose-weight/

http://metro.co.uk/2013/10/30/how-almonds-can-help-you-to-lose-weight-4163723/

http://www.doctoroz.com/slideshow/5-ways-chia-can-change-your-life?gallery=true

http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/fitness/weight-loss/4-reasons-the-quinoa-grain-can-help-you-lose-weight.html#b

http://www.popsugar.com/fitness/Ways-Grapefruit-Can-Help-You-Lose-Weight-26331222

http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/fitness/yogurt-smackdown-greek-vs-regular.html#b

Curb Your Cravings: Your Will Power and Eating Smart This Holiday Season

The holiday season can wreak havoc on your diet. From signature apple pies to decadent cookies and creamy mashed potatoes, the environment is fraught with traps that seem set up just to derail your resolve and have you elbow deep in a pile of irresistible holiday treats. But before you give up altogether, consider trying to adhere to the following smart tips that can help you lower your chance of disaster while maintaining a healthy dose of cheer.

Let Yourself Indulge…Later

This tip might initially seem counterintuitive, but studies show that individuals who completely deprive themselves of their edible desires often buckle and end up eating even more than those who allow themselves to indulge. Interestingly enough, those who allow themselves their food of choice, but not until later, either ended up eating a more moderate amount or none at all. Giving yourself permission to indulge but making yourself wait buys you time to allow the craving to potentially pass. Plus, if you eat something more nutritious first, you’ll take a lot of the power out of that craving and find that it’s not begging quite so loudly anymore.

Stick to Your Exercise Routine

Maintaining your gym routine throughout the holidays can remind you how hard you’ve worked to maintain your goal up until this point. It can also help you curb cravings and improve your mood. As an added benefit, it also allows you to burn off more calories—offering you some much-needed breathing room in your daily calorie count.

Set a Time Limit

The holidays are a time of abundance, and leftovers, snacks, and baked goods are often no more than an arm’s reach away. By setting certain times during the day that are dedicated to eating, you can prevent yourself from the constant grazing that can pack on pounds. By limiting not only the times during the day which are dedicated to eating, but also the number of snacks per day, you can set concrete barriers that can keep your consumption from running wild. Of course, if you find yourself genuinely hungry during an off time, be sure to grab a healthy snack to keep your blood sugar at a healthy level—a handful of raw nuts, an apple, or some Greek yogurt will do the trick.

Limit Your Variety

When we have a wide variety of foods in front of us, we tend to eat more. One deviled egg here, one cookie there, a dollop of mashed potatoes and a few candied yams may not seem like much when you look at each food separately, but combined they can add up fast. By limiting the number of foods you consume, you can prevent your mind from tricking you into thinking you’ve only had a few bites here and there. The holidays are a time for enjoying festivities with loved ones, and that almost always includes delicious food and drink. Have fun and partake in the holiday cheer, but remember these tips to keep your health and fitness routine on track.

3 Myths (and Truths) about Fat Loss

Every new day brings with it a new way to lose weight. But many of these new diets perpetuate pervasive myths about just how fat loss occurs and what can help an individual shed unwanted pounds. Here we’ll take a look at some of the most common fat loss myths and focus on tried-and-true ways to successfully shed that winter layer.

Myth: Saturated fat increases bad cholesterol and the risk of stroke and heart disease. Saturated fat has long been demonized, and its role in climbing cholesterol numbers has been focused on the LDL, or “bad” form of cholesterol. But the fact of the matter is that eating saturated fat also increases HLD, or “good” cholesterol as well! This means that saturated fat effectively has no effect on bad vs. good cholesterol numbers, as it increases both in tandem. Although a common claim, modern-day research has yet to prove an association with ingestion of saturated fat and an increase in the risk of an individual suffering from stroke, cardiovascular heart disease, or coronary heart disease.

Myth: A high carbohydrate diet is better than a high fat diet. Everyone knows that eating fat is always bad, right? Well, it turns out that is not necessarily true. Studies have shown that fat releases hormones that increase satiety levels, lowering an appetite that might otherwise be spurred by an overabundance of high carbohydrate foods. Oils and healthy dietary fats such as those found in avocados take time to break down, helping normalize insulin levels within the blood. Carbohydrates, on the other hand, can spike blood sugar and then insulin, creating drastic swings in glucose levels. Research concludes that an overabundance of carbohydrates—not fats—is linked to weight gain and Type 2 diabetes.

Myth: Eating at night will make you gain weight Everyone has heard this one. If you eat at night, your body will store that late night feast as fat. Many diets have strict rules about not eating after eight or nine and to lock yourself away from the snack cabinet. But likely the reason that those who eat late at night tend to gain weight is simply that they are consuming more calories throughout the day than those who do not. Although there is no definitive proof to determine whether time of day counts, the total amount of calories consumed is the number one contributor to weight gain or weight loss. The better rule of thumb is to eat when you’re hungry, not according to a clock, and stop eating a bit before you feel full.

When it comes to weight loss, health, and fitness, rumors and misinformation run rampant. Be sure to put in some research to ensure that you’re giving your body the nutrients it needs to thrive!

The Layman’s Guide to Plantar Fasciitis and Its Treatments

What you recognize as the sudden onset of an intense pain in your heel, Mayo Clinic staff refers to as plantar fasciitis. It denotes an inflammation of the plantar tendon, which is a layer of tissue that stretches across the bottom of your foot. The plantar fascia connects the bone in your heel with your toes and presents sharp stabs of pain when inflamed.

What Causes Plantar Fasciitis?

Long periods of standing, running downhill, wearing high-heeled shoes, and climbing stairs may cause the condition. In fact, any movement that causes a pull on the plantar tendon has the potential to result in painful stabbing sensations in the heel. For runners in particular, plantar fasciitis creates a problem when their running styles incorporate a consistent heel strike. Ballet dancers and high-impact Zumba participants, too, may find that these exercises overstress the tendon.

Other factors leading to the condition include obesity and footwear that does not provide adequate support for the feet. Sports hobbyists do not always recognize that the internal support system in their shoes has given way long before the shoes look like they need to be replaced. By delaying the replacement of the footwear, these folks run the risk of encouraging calcium buildups near the heel, which results in consistent pain when exercising, walking, or even standing.

Counteracting Early Warning Signs

The good news is that plantar fasciitis does not appear overnight. The condition builds up gradually. At the first sign of pain on the bottom of your foot or an uncomfortable feeling in the heel, it is time to take counter measures.

  • Footwear. Stop wearing unhealthy footwear. Turn to shoes with proper arch support and replace your running or exercise shoes regularly.
  • Change your running style. Runners should examine their foot landing styles. If they realize that they are landing on their heels, it is crucial to make a conscious effort to change the landing pattern to a healthier fore-heel strike.
  • Change your running locations. Although running hills offers you more fitness, the pain in your heel calls for flat surface running only.
  • Reduce high-impact activities. Consider switching out your dance aerobics routine for water aerobics when you feel the first twinges of pain.
  • Cushion your feet. When you stand for long periods at work or at home, invest in cushioning mats that take some of the pressure off your heel. These mats reduce the stress your plantar fascia experiences.

Dealing with Fully Developed Plantar Fasciitis

When the early twinges of pain have developed into a chronic condition that causes pain every time your foot touches the ground, you still have options. It starts with a visit to your doctor. This professional helps to rule out other problems.

Over-the-counter pain relief medication can ease the pain. The downside is the potential for side effects when you take these medications for longer periods. Since plantar fasciitis may last for a while, discuss the use of these medications and their side effects with your doctor before making this decision. Some physicians suggest the use of steroid injections, which do have the potential of greatly reducing the pain. Unfortunately, this treatment can cause more problems than it solves when used repeatedly.

Consult with a physical therapist about the best way that you can change your gait to undo the inflammation now and prevent it from recurring in the future. Orthotics assist with day-to-day activities such as standing at work or walking to your car. Experts at Erchonia have had excellent success with low-level laser therapy. After administering two 10-minute therapeutic laser treatments per week to the heels of affected patients over the course of three weeks, the majority of patients reported a positive change in pain levels. Whereas over-the-counter medications and steroid injections do bear some risks, the laser method did not lead to the report of any side effects.

[INFOGRAPHIC] With Laser Focus: What You Should Know Before Undergoing Laser Body Contouring

Laser body contouring remains one of the most advance medical procedures today, promoting natural fat loss through a non-invasive process. While non-invasive means you won’t have to woryr about incisions or anesthesia, it doesn’t necessarily mean the procedure is risk-free. Stay safe by doing your research.

5 Qualities of a Good Laser Fat Reduction Candidate

Have you been struggling to lose weight only to find “problem areas” that don’t change in response to diet and exercise? Luckily, cosmetic procedures like liposuction take the painstaking effort out of shedding the fat in these areas. Unfortunately, liposuction also has its drawbacks, like causing sagging skin in some patients.

Laser fat reduction is a non-invasive procedure that melts fat while keeping skin tight, thanks to the effects on your body’s production of collagen, a protein in the skin. The good news is that the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) reports on a study that showed that low-laser therapy for spot reduction is effective and safe.
Laser fat reduction is often used as an alternative to traditional liposuction, and some surgeons use the two together to achieve greater results.
For people who are thinking about cosmetic fat reduction or who are looking for an option to use in conjunction with liposuction, laser fat reduction procedures may be the answer. But like any procedure, not everyone is a right candidate. Could you be eligible for laser fat reduction? Check out below what qualities good candidates must have.

Candidate Must Have a Normal Body Weight

While laser fat reduction sounds like a quick fix for overweight adults, it’s generally not practiced on these patients. Instead, patients who undergo this type of procedure are usually in good health and simply have areas of fat that are resistant to change from diet and exercise.
That’s because liposuction, laser treatment, and other procedures are not designed to be a fix for obesity. As the American Society of Plastic Surgeons puts it, these procedures “are used to help contour your body in those areas that are not responsive to diet and exercise such as saddlebags or a paunchy stomach.”
Ideal liposuction candidates must be within 30 percent of their ideal body weight, says The American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Since the two procedures are often used to complement each other, you can expect your surgeon to consider the same weight requirements for both procedures.

Candidate Must Be in Good General Health

Like with any type of surgery, there are risks involved in laser fat reduction. The NCBI reports on an article from The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, which says that, “The ideal candidate for laser lipolysis is a patient who is thin, in good health, and presents with isolated pockets of removable fat.”
The article also talks about how some patients may encounter minor burns, a hazard that affected four patients in 537 cases. One patient out of the 537 cases also developed an infection. The National Society of Plastic Surgeons also lists bruising, swelling, numbness, and minimal bleeding as potential side effects of the treatment. Because of these risks, surgeons want to see patients in good health before undergoing a procedure like this to reduce the risk of complications.
However, these risks often only apply to other lasers. Verju offers no harmful side effects or risks compared to other popular body contouring lasers.
As the above mentioned article from NCBI reports, many cosmetic surgeons don’t generally work with patients over 60 or with problems like cardiovascular disorders, hypertension, or diabetes without being medically cleared before undergoing laser fat reduction treatment. Patients who have previously undergone chemotherapy, those taking antiretroviral medications, and those with liver disease are also not good candidates. Their risk increases because of impaired lidocaine metabolism and lidocaine toxicity.
In addition to complications that might arise, laser fat reduction treatment can increase the time spent at your surgeon’s office. This means patients must be well enough to sit through the duration of the procedure.

Candidate Must Not Be Pregnant

Similar to most medical procedures, it’s not advised to undergo cosmetic surgeries and treatments while pregnant. The NCBI lists a study that reports that there hasn’t been enough research to conclude whether cosmetic surgery during pregnancy is safe or not. For this reason, the study advises pregnant women to steer clear of elective surgery until after the baby is born.
After the woman gives birth, her surgeon may want to wait a while to perform a procedure like this so that her body has time to naturally heal. If you’re considering laser fat reduction treatment after pregnancy, talk to your surgeon about a safe time frame and what cosmetic treatment options you have to help get your pre-baby body back.

Candidate Must Struggle With Specific Problem Areas

Since laser fat reduction targets specific areas of the body, patients must have problem areas worth targeting. In other words, it’s not a cure-all solution. In addition, some laser tools only allow fat to be removed from certain locations, such as the abdomen and the hips.
Womenshealth.gov says that the best candidates for cosmetic surgery are those who have a strong self-image but have a certain physical characteristic they’d like to change. This is true of candidates seeking laser fat reduction treatments. Some common problem areas this procedure can help with include:
  • Abdomen
  • Arms
  • Buttocks
  • Neck
  • Thighs
  • Knees
  • Ankles
  • Waist

Candidates Must Be Educated and Have a Good Reason For Undergoing the Procedure

Cosmetic surgeons won’t perform procedures on just anyone. Instead, they carefully assess a patient’s reasons for undergoing the treatment and take a look at how educated a patient is about how the procedure works, what they can expect, and what the risks are.
In interviews with patients, surgeons try to get a better understanding of why patients want the procedure. A patient who has always had extra fat in his upper arms, for instance, might be a good candidate for spot reduction. A patient who is headed on vacation next week and wants to get into her summer beach body would not be a good candidate as this shows unrealistic expectations. Understanding patient motivations and educating them about the procedure can increase the chances of the patient finishing up treatment satisfied.
Remember that cosmetic surgery like this works best when used in conjunction with good diet and exercise. Research the facts, and talk to your doctor about whether or not you’re a good candidate for this procedure. Do you think you’d be a good candidate for this type of treatment? What problem area would you address?
Sources:
http://www.healthline.com/health-news/tech-laser-liposuction-technique-tightens-skin-041513
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20393809
http://www.plasticsurgery.org/news/plastic-surgery-blog/september-2012/how-to-reduce-fat-without-diet-exercise-or-surgery.html
http://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/liposuction.html?sub=Liposuction+candidates#content
http://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/laser-and-ultrasound-assisted-liposuction.html
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3140909/
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24164677
http://womenshealth.gov/body-image/cosmetic-surgery/
http://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/laser-and-ultrasound-assisted-liposuction.html?sub=Special+considerations,+risks+and+recovery#content

The Most Common Causes of Neck and Shoulder Pain

When it comes to dealing with the general aches and pains of daily life, issues surrounding neck and shoulder pain are relatively common. According to research, approximately two thirds of the population will experience neck pain during their lives. On top of this, around 10% of all patients suffering with complaints will continue to encounter chronic discomfort.
The neck and shoulder area contains a number of bones, muscles, arteries, veins and nerves, alongside various ligaments and supporting structures. On a daily basis, our necks are consistently relied upon to keep our heads level and aloft as we focus on other tasks and move throughout our lives. Often, we don’t recognize the significance of this until pain starts to make itself known. Unfortunately, you can strain your neck muscles in numerous ways, from hunching over the computer at work, to bad posture at home.
Many existing conditions can lead to pain in the neck and shoulder area. Some of these conditions could be incredibly dangerous, such as major trauma or the signs of a heart attack, whereas other cases are less concerning, such as contusions or strains. In rare circumstances, neck pain can present as a symptom of more significant problems, and it is always important to seek medical care if your issues accompany shooting pains, loss of strength, or numbness.

Damage to the Soft Tissues of the Neck and Shoulders Causes Pain

The most common cause of neck and shoulder pain comes from injury to the soft tissues which can include tendons, muscles, and ligaments within the affected structures. Regularly, these injuries happen as a result of some trauma or sudden damage like whiplash, however, degenerative disc disease in the neck, can cause localized pain, and degenerative arthritis of the neck and spine can pinch nerves, leading to shoulder and neck pain. Less common conditions surrounding the heart, lungs, and spinal cord can also lead to pain in the neck and shoulders, including:
  • Bursitis: The bursae in your body are fluid-filled sacs positioned over joints to provide a cushioning effect for the muscles. In some cases, the bursae can become stiff, swollen, and painful after injuries leading to chronic pain.
  • Broken collarbone: If you fall with your arm outstretched at an angle, this can cause your collarbone to break – a frequent problem when cyclers fall from their bikes.
  • Broken shoulder blade: Generally, injury to the shoulder blade is commonly associated with forceful trauma, and can lead to lasting pain around the neck and shoulder area.
  • Heart attacks: Although with a heart attack the primary problem is within the heart itself, the attack can lead to neck or shoulder pain know as “referred” pain.

Whiplash Neck Injury

Whiplash is a neck injury that takes place as a result of a sudden jerking motion forwards or backwards. Generally, whiplash happens because of motor vehicle incidents, but it can occur in other circumstances as well. Regularly, whiplash can stretch across the upper back and neck region, resulting in a significant strain across the supporting muscles, discs, and ligaments.
The effects of whiplash can present in a number of different ways. The most common symptoms generally include dizziness, headache, stiffness, and pain. In general, recovery will depend on the extent of the injury and the person in question, but it can take weeks or months on average.
Usually, the best way to manage whiplash is through anti-inflammatory medication and gentle mobilization exercises. Most doctors recommend that patients continue to pursue their daily activities as normal to facilitate a faster recovery.

Neck Pain Caused by Posture Problems

Consistently poor posture can cause health problems, some of which may last longer than others. Slouching or bad form can lead to neck pain by placing additional strain on the muscles and ligaments around your neck and shoulders. Even standing with your shoulders slouched, or working with your head down for significant periods of time can lead to chronic neck and shoulder pain.
To avoid poor posture pain, try some of the following techniques:
  • Be aware of your posture when sitting or standing, and adjust your positon where necessary
  • Make sure that your workstation is suitably organized to allow you to sit properly
  • Frequently change positions and stretch while working
  • Try to avoid sleeping on your stomach, as this can overextend your neck
  • Exercise frequently for improved posture and muscle tone

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is one of the most common types of arthritis, and any person of any age can suffer with it. However, because the onset of osteoarthritis is a result of the altered use of joints throughout the body over prolonged periods of time, older individuals typically suffer more regularly.
Osteoarthritis is a chronic condition wherein the cartilage providing cushioning between joints starts to break down, allowing the bones to grind together. People suffering from this issue can experience symptoms of stiffness, muscle weakness, and pain, and the most commonly affected areas include the lower back, hips, knee, and neck. At present, there is no available cure for osteoarthritis, although approximately 27 million people within America suffer from this ailment. However, it is possible to manage the symptoms with regular exercise, as keeping your joints mobile and within their correct alignment is the best way to nurture the health of good cartilage.

Dealing with Neck and Shoulder Pain

There are many different examples of neck and shoulder pain, as well as various different causes. Often, the best way to discover which ailment is affecting you is to speak to a doctor or health professional regarding your symptoms.
In most cases, the treatment of shoulder and neck pain caused by soft tissue problems will include the use of anti-inflammatory medication and pain relievers. However, if the root of the problem is elsewhere, then your doctor will need to pursue different courses of treatment according to your specific needs. For example, in cases where the spinal cord or the roots of nerves have become involved, you may find that a surgical procedure becomes necessary.
Let us know what aggravates your neck and shoulder pain, and whether you’ve found any useful techniques for managing the problem.
Resources:
http://www.patient.co.uk/doctor/neck-pain-cervicalgia-and-torticollis
http://www.medicinenet.com/heart_attack/article.htm
http://backandneck.about.com/od/s/g/softtissue.htm
http://www.medicinenet.com/acute_and_chronic_bursitis/article.htm
http://www.webmd.com/pain-management/tc/referred-shoulder-pain-topic-overview
http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/whiplash/basics/symptoms/con-20033090
http://www.livestrong.com/article/437366-health-problems-from-bad-posture/
http://www.arthritis.org/arthritis-facts/disease-center/osteoarthritis.php