Author Archives: info@newsouthfamilymedicine.com

COVID-19 Testing: The Basics

 

Hey Fort Mill, SC!  We hope all of you are staying safe out there!

There has been so much talk about testing for COVID-19.  What does it all mean?  What is the test that is by mouth or nose?  What are these blood tests?  Titers??  It’s enough to make your head spin, so I thought I would break it down for you!

The first test we started working with is called a PCR test.  This is the test where we collect specimens from your nose or throat.  Even that was controversial in the beginning of collection – we now know that we can collect either way as long as the sample is adequate.  PCR stands for polymerase chain reaction.  The lab takes the specimen and tests it against a specific piece of the virus then multiplies it by millions. If the virus particle is present in the sample given, it is positive.   If there is no viral material in the sample, the test is negative.

So….this test directly tests for the virus.  NOT our antibody response to it.  What are the limitations of this test?  First, if the person is not yet shedding viral material, meaning if they are only a couple days into their illness, there might not be anything on the actual sample to amplify.  This is why we wait for about 4 days into someone’s illness to test – without a fever, we know the body hasn’t yet mounted an immune response and there may not yet be enough of the virus present to get a good sample (even if they have the illness and don’t know it yet).  Second, if the sample is not properly obtained (bad sample, wrong testing tube, not deep enough back there).  Both of these situations would also cause a FALSE NEGATIVE.

So why did these take so long to get back?  Backlog.  Our labs were so overwhelmed with the number of tests coming in, they had to prioritize the sickest patients first then test the rest.  Initially it was taking 8-10 days to get results, which has now decreased to about 3-5 days.

The newer “rapid” tests are blood samples looking for the body’s response to the virus, not the viral material itself.  When we are exposed to a foreign substance, our body makes antibodies.  There are lots of different types of antibodies – some respond quickly and some more slowly.  These assure both a rapid and long-term fight against a pathogen.  The rapid antibody tested is IgM, but we now know this still takes about 4 days to present in a COVID-19 patient.  The IgG takes longer and we still aren’t sure how long that actually is.

So why are these tests so controversial?  Because they are extremely difficult to interpret for acute illness.

For example, if you have one day of fever and a cough, I check your antibody test and its negative, you could still have the virus!  Your body just hasn’t mounted an immune response to it, so you think you are safe, when in fact, you are potentially spreading it to the public.

On the flip side, I test you and you are positive for IgG antibodies.  This could actually be a cross reactive antibody to a different coronavirus that you may have had the in the fall which caused a mild cold.  So, I tell you are positive and immune, when in fact, you are not and still susceptible to getting sick.

These tests are much better if someone has been ill in the past, isn’t sure if they had the virus, then we check for short and longer term immunity to say, yes you were probably exposed.  Even that isn’t totally accurate yet!  We don’t know how long these antibodies stay positive in the body.

If the antibody test is used and comes back positive, it should be followed up with a swab to make sure that there is or is not actual viral material still present.

Yikes!  I hope I haven’t confused you and that this helps put these tests into perspective.  None of them are perfect, but collectively they give us information on the spread of the virus and how we respond to it.

At New South Family Medicine we have PCR/swab testing available and can send blood to LabCorp for antibody testing (takes about 3 days) but the FDA has not cleared us to have rapid antibody testing available yet.  These guidelines were just changed last week, which means that offices that bought these tests weeks back and had been doing in-office serology testing should not be using them right now.  We will keep you updated on if and when we are able to process rapid testing in the office in the future.

Remember, we are a direct primary care practice, which means Helen and I are available to our patients via phone, text, email and video visits.  For limited and urgent issues, we are in the office seeing patients.

Dr. Jessica

COVID-19: What you need to know

 

What is Coronavirus?

This is a large family of viruses that cause colds and upper respiratory infections.  COVID-19 is mostly spread through droplets in the air when someone who is infected sneezes, coughs or speaks too closely to another person.

How can you protect yourself?

  1.  WASH YOUR HANDS! 

2.  Avoid touching your face.

3.  Avoid close contact with someone who is sick.

4.  STAY HOME if you are sick.

5.  Cover your mouth when you sneeze or cough – do this in your elbow or a tissue.

6.  Clean and disinfect surfaces regularly.

 

What is social distancing?

This means staying away from other people at a distance of at least 6 feet.  Social distancing matters because we have the ability to actually STOP the spread of the virus this way.  If we limit contact during the peak of this illness, we have the chance to decrease transmission to our most vulnerable population, who are the most likely to get hospitalized and potentially overwhelm our hospitals.  Stop it before it gets to them.

 

What is “flattening the curve”?

If we distance ourselves from each other NOW and PREVENT spreading the virus early, we will decrease the number of people who fall ill, and therefore hospitalizations.  If the peak number of patients overloads our hospitals, we will have to ration medications, ICU beds, ventilators, and even medical personnel.  We are already understaffed and are likely to be even more so as our healthcare workers fall ill.

In a widely shared graphic, a tan curve represents a scenario without social distancing measures and where the U.S. hospital system becomes inundated with coronavirus patients.

 

What if I am sick?

DON’T PANIC!!  It is still flu season and now allergies are in the air.  CALL your doctor’s office before driving.  It is likely they will direct you to stay home, rest, and hydrate.   It is best not to expose yourself or others in a crowded waiting room.  The CDC currently recommends no contact until you are fever free for 72 hours.  Use fever-reducers and cough medicine as directed by your doctor.

 

How do I get tested?

Again, CALL your doctor’s office to see if testing is available. In an ideal setting, we would have testing for everyone that needs it.  Unfortunately,  testing is still in short supply.  Even if you are able to get to a testing site, there is no guarantee that you will be tested regardless of your symptoms unless they are already severe.  Unless you are short of breath or have underlying medical problems, it is still best to STAY HOME.   Most medical facilities are now offering virtual visits, which is a great way to determine next steps with a doctor.

Hopefully, I will be able to amend this post to say testing is widely available soon.  Stay tuned…

 

Where should I go for accurate information?

At New South Family Medicine, we are following the guidelines set forth by of the Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization, and locally, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Feel free to call us with any questions or concerns!

Stay safe and STAY HOME!!!

Dr. Jessica

 

2019 Reflection

As I reflect on 2019, I find it fitting that we are coming up on our ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY just after the holidays.

I am so grateful to the citizens of Fort Mill, SC for the continued support of my little practice throughout the year.

Two years ago, New South Family Medicine didn’t even have a name.  It wasn’t a blip on my radar.  As I looked at how I want to practice medicine, the Direct Primary Care model came more into focus.  The shape of my family medicine practice looked very different than my experiences in large practices in the past.

While I am grateful for my time practicing in Charlotte, I knew I could create something different  for Fort Mill – more personal, more accessible , and more transparent.  To no end, it would frustrate both my patients and me to feel “in the dark” about the cost of healthcare.

One small business at a time, DPC is changing that.

Prior to owning my practice, I could not have imagined the grit and determination it would take to own a small business.  Now that I do, I have such respect for those out there working so hard to build their niche.  I’ve loved this adventure and the people I have met along the way, but it is not for the faint of heart!!  I am so grateful to have a loving, supportive family that joins me as I venture out into my community to spread the word.

In May of this year, I had the opportunity to get started in aesthetic medicine too!  Learning and growing medical aesthetics with Botox and Juvederm fillers has been super fun and has allowed my creative side to flourish.  I’m excited to add more to that in 2020.

In October I joined up with the national Walk With A Doc program and started our own Fort Mill chapter!  We have set out to bring monthly walks to Kingsley Town Center.  I am thrilled to have more community partners join me in 2020 for even more fun!  Check out our page to learn more!

Fort Mill, South Carolina

Thank you to each and every person out there that has supported us.  I want this practice to grow organically.  I want people to experience a different type of healthcare and I hope my patients have.

2019 has been a year of growth, both professionally and personally.  I am constantly humbled and grateful for the lessons I have learned this year.

We hope all of you have a happy and healthy 2020 and look forward to staying involved in the community, learning from each of you, and keeping our town healthy.

Cheers to each of you,

Dr. Jessica

Time for your Flu Shot!

Did you know flu season is here??

Flu season is quickly approaching and we need to discuss PREVENTION and appropriate treatments!  The best way to prevent seasonal flu is to get vaccinated EVERY YEAR!  The Centers for Disease Control talks about the three actions we can all take to protect ourselves and others against flu.

Lets take a dive into what we can collectively do to keep each other healthy!

  1. GET VACCINATED!!!

Everyone over the age of 6 months should get a flu vaccine each year, especially those that are high risk (we will talk about who is at high risk and who should not get a flu shot below).  Getting vaccinated has a lot of benefits – it reduces illness, doctor’s visits, time away from school and work and, most importantly, flu-related hospitalizations and deaths.  A very important 2017 study done by the CDC showed that vaccination decreases these complications by more than HALF https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2017/p0403-flu-vaccine.html!!!  That’s huge!

  1. Healthy Habits to Prevent Spread

Did I mention to get vaccinated??!!  Its also very important to use regular hygiene such as covering your cough, sneezing into your elbow, and HAND WASHING to help stop the spread of germs in general.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick and, when you are sick, please stay home!  Multiple viruses and bacteria are spread through coughing, sneezing, and touching each other – not just flu!  In the cold, we tend to gather inside, which means it is easier to spread illnesses such as RSV, whooping cough and the common cold as well!

WASH YOUR HANDS!  Lather soap and wring hands together for one minute to effectively kill germs.  If no hand-washing is available, use a alcohol-based hand sanitizer.  Come on in to New South Family Medicine and grab one!  We have plenty!

Make sure to disinfect touched surfaces at home, work and school, get plenty of rest, hydrate, stay active, manage your stress and eat nutritious foods!!

  1. Treatment

There are anti-viral medications available if one tests positive for the flu.  In most cases, it is not necessary to test or use anti-virals to diagnose and treat.  If you get sick, stay home, stay hydrated and avoid contact with others to prevent spread.

High Risk Groups , however, such as someone with cancer, asthma, diabetes, heart disease, young children or adults age 65 and older, are more likely to suffer complications.  We reserve anti-viral drugs for these patients, to try to decrease their illness time and prevent hospitalization.  At any point, if you aren’t sure about your illness, call Dr. Mendelsohn and Helen and we will guide you through your treatment options!

 There are a lot of myths and misconceptions about the flu vaccine. 

We know that the flu vaccine is not 100% failsafe.  We know that you can still contract a different strain of flu virus after getting the vaccine. There are many strains of flu viruses that spread and cause illness. The vaccine is “matched” each year to prevent the most likely strains, but it cannot cover all of them.  Just like we still get into accidents when we wear our seatbelts (especially on highway 160 in Fort Mill), it is less likely for us to get severely injured or hospitalized if we take proper precautions, but we can’t prevent every driver from accidents.

The flu vaccine CANNOT cause the flu.  The vaccine used to produce an immune response is either a killed virus or just part of the virus, therefore, not the full virus capable of multiplying and causing illness.  Most common side effects are soreness at the injection site and redness.  One can also get a low-grade fever, body and muscle aches or fatigue, but these are not as common.  Remember, we are mostly inside during colder months, so we pass along many other respiratory viral illnesses and bacteria that are also very common and take a week or two to multiply and cause symptoms.

So who should not get the flu vaccine?  There aren’t too many people that should avoid the flu shot.  Children younger than 6 months and people with severe, life-threatening allergies to the vaccine or any of its ingredients should avoid the flu shot.

So what about egg allergy?  As of the 2016-2017 flu season, the CDC recommends a flu vaccine for anyone that has a mild to moderate egg allergy.  If one can eat lightly cooked eggs, eggs in baked products, or hives after egg exposure, that person can safely receive a flu vaccine.  If someone has a more severe allergy, such as vomiting or difficulty breathing requiring an Epipen, they can still get a flu shot under a medically licensed physician’s supervision.

The CDC has a ton of information on the flu virus, vaccine and prevention.  We will follow the flu season together and treat appropriately.  While I am not offering flu vaccines this year, I have attached a list of local pharmacies in Fort Mill that provide affordable vaccines.  The York County and Mecklenburg County Health Departments are also excellent resources for vaccines.  I appreciate your patience as we work through this first year.  Our family medicine practice is growing and I hope to be able to offer flu and other vaccines in the near future!!!

Resources:

https://www.cdc.gov/flu/index.htm

FORT MILL PHARMACY   $25.00 FOR QUAD FLU

ALL WALMARTS                  $39.88 FOR QUAD FLU

PUBLIX                                   $45.00 FOR QUAD FLU (and $10 gift card)

HARRIS TEETER                    $40.00 FOR QUAD FLU

CVS                                          $32.00 FOR QUAD FLU

TARGET                                 $32.00 FOR QUAD FLU (and $5 gift card)

WALGREENS                      $36.00 FOR QUAD FLU

 

 

 

 

Anatomy of a Healthy Plate- Guest Blogger Rebecca Gray

Take a moment to review the above plate. Then take a moment to reflect on your unique plate. How closely does your current diet and lifestyle reflect the above plate? What similarities do you notice? What differences do you see?

Industry standards and busy lifestyles have shifted the modern-day plate to incorporate larger portions, fewer vegetables, and increased amounts of fat and sodium. All which all are considerable contributors to weight gain, obesity, and disease. Food Changes Everything!

Food affects your whole being. The saying is true; you are what you eat. Let me explain why food enters the bloodstream, and blood is what creates your cells, tissues, and organs. Food has the power to regenerate the new you!

The world of diets and dietary theories is complicated and can be overwhelming. However, people need to understand what works best for them individually. Eating a diet made of whole foods, and no, not just anything you purchase from the Whole Foods grocery store. I mean more fruits and vegetables, lean protein, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, and drinking more water.

Now, forget about how your plate compared and let’s re-learn how to build your plate the healthy way!

Your plate should be made up of mostly vegetables! Specifically, green veggies! Those are the foods most commonly missing in modern diets. Learning to incorporate dark, leafy greens into your diet is essential to establishing a healthy body and immune system. When you nourish yourself with greens, you may naturally crowd out the foods that make you sick. Greens help strengthen the blood and respiratory system. Leafy green vegetables are also high-alkaline foods, which may be beneficial to people exposed to higher amounts of pollution in urban areas.

Nutritionally, greens are high in calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium, and vitamins A, C, and K. They are loaded with fiber, folic acid, chlorophyll, and many other micro-nutrients and phytochemicals. Although choosing organic is recommended, eating non-organic greens is still preferable to not eating any greens at all!

Some of the proven and possible benefits of consuming dark, leafy greens are:

  • Blood purification
  • Cancer prevention
  • Improved circulation
  • Strengthened immune system
  • Promotion of healthy intestinal flora • Improved liver, gall bladder, also, kidney function
  • Clears congestion, especially in lungs by reducing mucus.

Eating fruit provides excellent health benefits. Fruits provide nutrients vital for health and maintenance of your body. Most fruits are naturally low in fat, sodium, and calories; and are full of sources of many essential nutrients such as potassium, dietary fiber, vitamin C, and folate (folic acid). Diets rich in potassium may help to maintain healthy blood pressure.

Dietary fiber from fruits, as part of an overall healthy diet, helps reduce blood cholesterol levels and may lower risk of heart disease. Fiber containing foods such as fruits help provide a feeling of fullness with fewer calories.  Vitamin C is essential for growth and repair of all body tissues, helps heal cuts and wounds, and keeps teeth and gums healthy.

Folate (folic acid) helps the body form red blood cells. Women of childbearing age who may become pregnant should consume adequate folate from foods,

Some of the proven and possible benefits of consuming fruits are:

May reduce the risk of heart disease, including heart attack and stroke.

  • May protect against certain types of cancers.
  • May reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.
  • May lower blood pressure, and may also reduce the risk of developing kidney stones and help to decrease bone loss.

Carbohydrates​ ​can​ ​be​ ​confusing and scary to some people. That is mainly because not​ ​all​ ​of them​ ​are​ ​created​ ​equally.​ ​You​ ​find​ ​them​ ​in​ ​the​ ​usual​ ​suspects:​ ​bread,​ ​cereals,​ ​crackers​ ​, and​ ​pasta.​ ​You also​ ​find​ ​them​ ​in​ ​whole​ ​grains,​ ​fruits,​ ​vegetables,​ ​legumes,​ ​beans​ ​, and​ ​dairy.​ ​Your​ ​body​ ​needs carbohydrates​ ​to​ ​function​ ​optimally!  ​The​ healthy ​carbohydrates​ ​you​ ​eat​ ​are​ ​broken​ ​down​ ​into​ ​glucose, which​ ​is​ ​the​ ​primary​ ​fuel​ ​your​ ​body​ ​uses​ ​for​ ​energy​ ​and​ ​to​ ​carry​ ​out​ ​normal​ ​cellular​ ​processes.​ ​We​ ​cannot​ ​live​ ​on​ ​fats​ ​and​ ​proteins​ ​alone​. That is because too​ ​much​ ​time​ ​without​ ​some​ ​carbs​ ​on​ ​your plate​ ​will​ ​leave​ ​you​ ​sluggish,​ ​tired, ​ ​and​ ​inefficient​ ​at​ ​getting​ ​through​ ​the​ ​day. So what kind of grains are best? Complex carbohydrates! I am specifically​ ​talking​ ​about​ ​carbs​ ​that​ ​come​ ​from​ ​ ​whole​ ​grains. Whole grains ​ ​are​ ​made​ ​up​ ​of​ ​​all parts​ ​of​ ​the​ ​grain:​ ​the​ ​​bran​​ ​(the​ ​fiber-rich​ ​outer​ ​layer),​ ​the​ ​​endosperm​​ ​(the​ ​middle​ ​section)​ ​and​ ​the germ​​ ​(the​ ​nutrient-rich​ ​inner​ ​part).​ ​When​ ​grains​ ​are​ ​milled ​ ​or​ ​refined,​ ​the​ ​bran​ ​and​ ​germ​ ​portions are​ ​removed,​ ​leaving​ ​only​ ​the​ ​endosperm​ ​(what​ ​you​ ​get​ ​when​ ​you​ ​eat​ ​white​ ​bread).​ ​The​ ​endosperm is​ ​mostly​ ​empty​ ​carbohydrate​ ​calories.​ ​Yes,​ ​you​ ​need​ ​carbs​ ​for​ ​energy,​ ​but​ ​you’re​ ​losing​ ​the benefits​ ​of​ ​the​ ​whole​ ​grain​ ​when​ ​you​ ​go​ ​for​ ​refined.​ ​Most​ ​of​ ​the​ ​carbohydrates​ ​in​ ​a​ ​healthful​ ​meal​ ​plan​ ​should come​ ​in​ ​the​ ​form​ ​of​ ​​veggies,​ ​fruits,​ ​yogurt,​ ​beans,​ ​legumes​ ​​, and​​ ​whole​ ​grains​.​ ​These carbohydrate-rich​ ​foods​ ​tend​ ​to​ ​be​ ​the​ ​most​ ​nutrient-dense​ ​choices.​ ​Like​ ​millet,​ ​quinoa, ​spelt​, ​or​ ​cracked​ ​wheat.​ ​Whole​ ​wheat​ ​bread,​ ​brown​ ​rice,​ ​and​ ​whole-wheat​ ​pasta​ ​are also​ ​good​ ​sources​ ​of​ ​carbohydrates. ​However,​ ​their​ ​whole​ ​grains​ ​are​ ​processed​ ​, and​ ​therefore,​ ​some nutrients​ ​are​ ​lost.​ It is important to mention that whole grains are not for everyone — especially those who have a gluten sensitivity or celiac disease.

Some of the proven and possible benefits of consuming whole grains are:

  • High in nutrients and fiber.
  • May lower your risk of heart disease
  • May lower your risk of stroke
  • Support a healthy digestion
  • May reduce chronic inflammation
  • Bodies #1 energy source

Proteins are considered the building blocks of life. Our skin, bones, muscles, hair, nails, and cartilage are mainly made of proteins. Most enzymes and hormones in our bodies are also proteins. Our protein needs shift as our activity levels change and throughout our life cycle. We​ ​need​ ​the​ ​most​ ​protein​ ​when​ ​we​ ​are​ ​growing​ ​(childhood​ ​and​ ​pregnancy)​ ​and repairing​ ​(injury​ ​or​ ​recovery​ ​from​ ​intense​ ​strength​ ​training).​ Protein has many functions in the body, aside from just giving us energy. It helps provide structure to our tissues and cells, supports our immunity, and even helps support growth. Protein​ ​quality​ ​usually​ ​refers​ ​to the​ ​levels​ ​of​ ​essential​ ​amino​ ​acids​ ​found​ ​in​ ​the​ ​food.​ ​There are two types of dietary protein: complete and incomplete. Protein that comes from animal food is considered a complete protein because it contains all essential amino acids. Plant-based proteins are typically lacking in one or two of these essential amino acids, which is why this form of protein is considered incomplete.  Animal​ ​proteins,​ ​such​ ​as​ ​beef,​ ​eggs,​ ​chicken, fish​ ​, and​ ​poultry,​ ​contain​ ​high​ ​levels​ ​of​ ​all​ ​of​ ​the​ ​essential​ ​amino​ ​acids,​ ​and​ ​so​ ​they​ ​are​ ​referred​ ​to​ ​as complete​ ​proteins​.​ ​Soy-based​ ​foods,​ ​such​ ​as​ ​tofu​ ​and​ ​tempeh,​ ​quinoa​ ​and​ ​hemp​ ​are​ ​also considered​ ​complete.​ ​Many​ ​plant​ ​foods​ ​such​ ​as legumes,​ ​rice,​ ​beans​ ​, and​ ​nuts​ ​do​ ​not​ ​contain​ ​all​ ​the​ ​essential​ ​amino​ ​acids​ ​in​ ​high​ ​amounts​ ​and​ ​may be​ ​referred​ ​to​ ​as​ ​​incomplete​ ​proteins. Many people are concerned that they don’t get enough protein, but most can easily obtain adequate protein from their diets, whether or not they consume animal foods.

Some of the proven and possible benefits of consuming lean proteins are:

  • Builds and repairs body structure
  • Supports a healthy metabolism
  • Encourages weight loss and maintenance
  • Improves overall health

Health fats, also known as lipids, are necessary for our diets to achieve optimal health. Although fat might be a scary word to some, remember that the quality and type of fat we’re eating plays a significant role in our health and that by avoiding it, we’re doing ourselves a disservice. Healthy fats you want to include are called monounsaturated fats, like those in the Mediterranean Diet. Things like avocado, chia seeds, olive oil, nut, and seeds. They help are heart-healthy and help to support “good” cholesterol (HDL) and lower “bad” cholesterol (LDL). Polyunsaturated fatty acids found in the form of  Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are essential to our diets because we can’t synthesize them in the body. There are three main types of omega-3s: EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), and ALA (alpha-linolenic acid). Omega-3s help reduce inflammation, support heart health, reduce symptoms of depression, and reduce the risk of cancer. Western diets tend to be high in omega-6 (linoleic acid) and lacking in omega-3, which has been shown to promote inflammation. Good sources of EPA and DHA are salmon tuna, walnuts, and chia seeds. Health benefits aside, fat helps our food taste delicious and because fat takes longer to digest, keeps us feeling satisfied after a meal.  As a good rule of thumb stay away from fats in the forms of saturated or trans fats found in processed foods, fatty meats, or fried foods.

Some of the proven and possible benefits of consuming healthy fats are:

  • Supports proper brain development
  • Provides cushioning and insulation for internal organs
  • Plays a role in hormone synthesis
  • Help support cardiovascular and neurological health

Hydration another essential part of your healthy plate! Water​ ​makes​ ​up​ ​50​ ​to​ ​60%​ ​of​ ​your​ ​body​ ​weight​ ​, and​ ​every​ ​system​ ​in​ ​your​ ​body​ ​depends​ ​on​ ​water​ ​to function.​ ​Two-thirds​ ​of​ ​the​ ​water​ ​in​ ​the​ ​body​ ​is​ ​within​ ​cells​ ​, and​ ​about​ ​one-third​ ​is​ ​outside​ ​of​ ​cells​ ​as the extracellular​ ​fluid,​ ​circulating​ ​in​ ​the blood,​ ​between​ ​cells​ ​and​ ​inside​ ​organs.​ ​You​ ​need​ ​water​ ​to​ ​make everything​ ​in​ ​your​ ​body​ ​happen,​ ​including​ ​proper​ ​nutrition.​ ​Water​ ​flushes​ ​toxins​ ​and​ ​wastes​ ​out​ ​of organs,​ ​helps​ ​carry​ ​oxygen​ ​and​ ​nutrients​ ​to​ ​cells, ​ ​and​ ​provides​ ​a​ ​healthy​ ​environment​ ​for​ ​tissues.

​Not​ ​getting​ ​enough​ ​water​ ​leads​ ​to dehydration,​ ​a​ ​dangerous​ ​state​ ​for​ ​your​ ​body​ ​to​ ​be​ ​in.​ ​During​ ​periods​ ​of​ ​dehydration,​ ​your​ ​body can’t​ ​carry​ ​out​ ​normal​ ​functions​ ​and​ ​begins​ ​to​ ​feel​ ​tired​ ​and​ ​drained.​ We’ve​ ​all​ ​heard​ ​the​ ​rule​ ​”8​ ​glasses​ ​of​ ​water​ ​a​ ​day”! Still,​ ​it’s​ ​not​ ​a​ ​bad​ ​mantra​ ​to​ ​live by​ ​, and​ ​I​ ​often​ ​give​ ​my​ ​clients​ ​the​ ​goal​ ​of​ ​8​ ​glasses​ ​a​ ​day​ ​as​ ​it’s​ ​pretty​ ​easy​ ​to​ ​remember, ​ ​and​ ​it​ ​is adequate​ ​for​ ​most​ ​people.​ There​ ​are​ ​lots​ ​of​ ​other​ ​ways​ ​to​ ​get​ ​your​ ​fluid​ ​in​ ​than​ ​just​ ​plain​ ​old​ ​H2O.​ ​Lots​ ​of​ ​foods​ ​are​ ​packed with​ ​water​ ​, and​ ​other​ ​healthy​ ​beverages can​ ​count​ ​towards​ ​your​ ​daily​ ​dose​ ​of liquid.​ ​Most​ ​fruits​ ​and​ ​vegetables​ ​have​ ​incredibly​ ​high​ ​water​ ​content​ ​-​ ​some​ ​can​ ​be​ ​up​ ​to​ ​96%​ ​water! Think of cucumbers, melons, celery, grapefruit, iceberg lettuce, or herbal teas.

Some of the proven and possible benefits of consuming water are:

  • Lubricates the joints
  • Regulates body temperature
  • Flushes out wastes
  • Maintains blood pressure

So, now that you know the anatomy of a healthy plate, you can eat empowered! By that I mean you can feel​ ​empowered​ ​putting​ ​the​ ​most​ ​nutrient-rich​ ​foods​ ​in​ ​your​ ​body.​ ​It’s​ ​not,​ ​”I​ ​can’t​ ​eat​ ​the chocolate​ ​cake.”​ ​It’s,​ ​”I​ ​can​ ​eat​ ​the​ ​blueberries!”​ ​​ ​When​ ​you​ ​focus​ ​on​ ​how​ ​good​ ​you​ ​feel​ ​fueling yourself​ ​with​ ​the​ ​best​ ​foods,​ ​you​ ​will​ ​continue​ ​to​ ​be​ ​motivated​ ​to​ ​eat​ ​these​ ​foods.​ ​The​ ​benefits​ ​will follow—I’m​ ​talking​ ​everything​ ​from​ ​weight​ ​loss​ ​to​ ​skin​ ​health.​ ​When​ ​you​ ​eat​ ​well,​ ​you​ ​feel​ ​good​ ​and​ ​live good!

Rebecca Gray, Holistic Health Coach of Faithfully Rooted in Health

“Eating clean food, breathing deeply and moving intentionally throughout the day  are the centerpiece of my personal health plan.  My passion is helping mamas [and others] cultivate these habits into their lives. It is not just about food and exercise. Yes, both are important,  but family, faith, work, money and the environment we create matter too. Agreed?  We will be discussing all facets of a wholesome life in the days ahead.

So, whether you are one hot mess and need to get on track with healthy living or you are on track and need encouragement to stay there, I can help. Lets live healthy and whole, TOGETHER!”

For recipes or more information, please visit me at www.faithfullyrootedinhealth.com

Follow me on Instagram Here!

Sources:

Medical News Today https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/290814.php

Oregon State University https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/publications/rx-health

BistroMD https://www.bistromd.com/nutrition/the-4-major-benefits-of-eating-lean-protein-and-the-best-ones-to-eat

Healthline https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/9-benefits-of-whole-grains#section11

Integrated Institute of Nutrition https://www.integrativenutrition.com

Nutritious Life https://nutritiouslife.com

123RF Images https://www.123rf.com/photo_77515012_stock-vector-healthy-plate-concept-vector-illustration-of-balanced-meal.html