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Meniscus Injury & Prevention

Meniscus Injury & Prevention

Author: Achieve Wellness Staff

A torn meniscus is one of the most common knee injuries, with more than 3 million reported cases annually in the US. The Meniscus is a C-shaped disc of cartilage that cushions the femur and tibia at the knee joint. An injury can occur when there is a tear in the cartilage due to incorrect movement or improper weight distribution. When this injury happens the cartilage cannot support the weight between femur and tibia. An example of this would be twisting or rotating the knee while keeping your foot planted. Elderly and those who play sports are at an increased risk for injury. Symptoms can include pain or swelling around the knee joint, a clicking noise, and/or inability to bear weight on the affected side.

There are training and strengthening techniques that can be used to help prevent and also heal a meniscus tear. Assessments can be performed to see if there is pain when certain movements are performed involving the knee joint. If a tear has happened, you need to strengthen and recondition the muscles around it in order to prevent the injury from worsening and to help it heal. Stability, core, and balance training would help assist in preventing a tear from happening. When performing exercises, keeping the feet straight and the knees in line with the feet will help ensure the knee is moving correctly. Focusing on good form and posture will help maintain proper movement patterns which will decrease the risk of injury.

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Improving Your Fitness Age

Improving Your Fitness Age

Author: Achieve Wellness Staff

Exercise makes you feel younger. Okay, okay, all you “exercisers” out there know that this isn’t really a news flash. But recent studies have shown it’s actually true.

“Fitness age” is an idea that was developed by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in its studies of thousands of Norwegians of all ages. Generally speaking, the concept of “fitness age” is that people with above-average cardiovascular fitness generally have longer life spans than people with lower aerobic fitness, and vice-versa.

The Norwegian research was the basis for the development of fitness calculators, which are easy to use and readily available online at no cost.

This year the idea of fitness calculation was put to the test on a special population of older adults: 4,200 participants at the Senior Olympic Games. Dr. Pamela Peeke an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Maryland and Ulrik Wisloff, the scientist who led the development of the fitness age calculator, got together to study the fitness age of the Senior Olympians.

The results were impressive. “While the athletes’ average chronological age was 68, their average fitness age was 43.” Yes, you read that right: the average Senior Olympian’s fitness age was 25 years younger than his/her chronological age!

The substantial difference in the chronological age vs. the fitness age of the Senior Olympic study should serve as inspiration for all as to the substantial benefits of fitness at any age!

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Can You Eat Too Much Protein?

Can You Eat Too Much Protein?

Author: Achieve Wellness Staff

Myth: As far as weight is concerned, you cannot eat too much protein. Anything beyond what your body needs will get excreted in urine

Logic: Because the body has little capacity to store proteins, it makes sense that anything consumed beyond what the body immediately needs will be excreted in the urine (similar to water – soluble vitamins)

The Science: It is true that the body has limited ability to store protein. It is also true that a portion of the protein does get excreted in the urine (the nitrogen group that shows up in urine as urea). However, the other portion of the protein (the carbon group) is readily converted to glucose or fat, depending on the body’s current needs. Ultimately, protein consumed beyond what the body needs has the same fate as excess carbohydrate or fat – conversion into stored fat.

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