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The Sequoia Advisor
IN THIS ISSUE March 1st 2014
- Better Bone Quality and Reduced Fracture Risk
- The Best Time to Check Vitamin D Levels
- Workshop Series... There's No Place Like Home
- Posture Perfect!TM Gift Certificates Available
- Posture Perfect!TM Try Your First Class for FREE!
Feel Better... Live Better
Better Bone Quality and Reduced Fracture Risk
By Woody McMahon
Bone's Major Functions
Bone has three major functions. The first involves providing a structural
support for your heart, lungs, marrow and other organs and the attachment
sites for muscles so that you can move your arms, legs and head. Think of
what a blob you would be without your bones giving you structure. The
second function involves providing protection for your brain and other
internal organs. Finally, bone acts as a mineral storage bank for calcium
and phosphorus helping to maintain a proper acid/base balance in your body
called pH. So you can see that your bones have more than just one function.
The Importance of Bone Quality
The term bone quality may be new to you but it is an important one to
understand. Bone quality describes all the components that keep it
strong and fracture free. By weight, bone is composed of about 10%
collagen matrix, 65% minerals and 25% water. It is not just the minerals
but all three components working together that keep your bones strong and
Bone Density Numbers
Bone quality however is very different from the term bone density.
You may have completed a DEXA test and been told they found a change
in your bone density. Your bone density was either normal or you received
a diagnosis of osteoporosis or osteopenia. Take heart because all is
not lost. The DEXA scores you received only tells you about the mineral
density and content of the bone. It cannot tell you the amount or the
health of your matrix or water content. The mineral density then is
considered one of many risks. It is used, along with other risk factors,
when calculating fracture risk. It is important to remember that
no one risk factor by itself can predict fracture risk.
Bone Density... Only One Risk Factor
Sometimes in the rush to osteoporosis treatment, it is lost in the shuffle
that your DEXA scores are just one risk factor of many to consider
when predicting fractures. It is also important to remember that you
want to prevent fractures, nothing more nothing less. It also bears
repeating that only one risk factor by itself, not even DEXA, can predict
fracture risk. According to Dr. Susan Ott, MD at the University of
Washington, "In an individual, the quality of the bone, the shape of the
bone, the presence of a fracture or other risk factors, weight, muscle
strength, and the tendency to fall (balance) are all important to
predicting the risk of fracture."
Fracture Risk... Using the FRAX Tool
The FRAX tool is a better predictor of fracture because it uses 12
independent risk factors, including bone density, to determine your course
of treatment. The FRAX� tool was developed by the World Health
Organization to evaluate fracture risk of patients. The FRAX models have
been developed from studying population-based cohorts from Europe,
North America, Asia and Australia. The FRAX tool gives the 10-year
probability of a hip fracture and/or a major osteoporotic fracture
(clinical spine, forearm, hip or shoulder fracture).
Limitations of the FRAX Tool
The International Osteoporosis Foundation says that the FRAX tool has
the following limitations:
Improving Bone Quality
- Does not include all known risk factors
- Lacks detail on some risk factors
- Depends on adequacy of epidemiological information
- Limited country models available
- Model relevant only for untreated patients
- Does not replace clinical judgment
Now you know that keeping your bones healthy is more complex
than just trying to increase bone density. Your bones and the rest of
your body work together and are dependent upon each other. So your
general health will, to a great degree, determine your bone health.
Lifestyle factors like drinking enough water, eating a balanced diet,
exercising safely and effectively, drinking and smoking habits and how
well you manage your stress are all important in keeping your bones
healthy. Just focusing on one lifestyle change, like eating healthier
foods, is rarely enough to improve your bone health. It takes multiple
changes, in the right proportions, to really make a significant difference
in your bone and body health.
Would you like to improve your bone quality but don't know where
to start? I provide an easy to follow program called Be Bone Strong!
that helps improve your bone health, posture and balance while reducing
fracture risk. Contact me anytime for a no cost consultation at
703-628-2880 or email to email@example.com.
The Best Time to Check Your Vitamin D Levels
by Woody McMahon
Lowest Levels of the Year
In the winter months, your body uses stored vitamin D from the liver. If
your liver stores are not adequate at the end of the summer, the blood will
show low levels just before spring. Checking levels now gives a much more
accurate indication of whether you are getting enough vitamin D during the
rest of the year. If you supplement regularly with vitamin D, your values
should be much higher and may even be in the normal range.
The Growing Importance of Vitamin D
Once thought to be just a vitamin necessary for strong bones, recent
research indicates vitamin D deficiency plays a role in causing seventeen
varieties of cancer as well as heart disease, stroke, hypertension,
autoimmune diseases, diabetes, depression, chronic pain, osteoarthritis,
osteoporosis, muscle weakness, muscle wasting, birth defects, and
Cancer and Vitamin D
A recent study of women who took vitamin D and calcium showed a 60 %
decrease in breast, lung and colon cancer at the end of the trial over the
women who took a dummy pill. When the researchers dropped the cases
discovered in the first year, assuming those cancers had been present but
unnoticed when the trial began, the reduction in cancer in the vitamin D
group was an astonishing 77% lower. This study reinforces other studies
showing that it is harmful to your health to have low blood levels of
Vitamin D Basics
Vitamin D was originally misnamed and is actually not a vitamin at all.
It's a naturally occurring hormone, produced when ultraviolet B rays (UVB)
from the sun strike your skin. If the skin produces more vitamin D than is
needed, your liver stores the excess. In a natural vitamin D cycle, the
skin produces enough vitamin D in the spring and summer lasting you
through the winter when vitamin D production is at its lowest due to
clothing and reduced hours of sunlight. If you live in the northern
latitudes, this is the time of year your body will have its lowest
levels of vitamin D.
What Steps Should I Take?
1. Get Your Vitamin D3 Levels Checked
Your physician can administer a simple blood test to check for 25
hydroxyvitamin D levels. Optimal levels are around 50 ng/mL (125 nM/L).
You can also order a home test kit for vitamin D from the Vitamin D council
2. Get Sunscreen Free, Sun Exposure (5 to 15 minutes)
5 to 15 minutes in the middle of the day is adequate for vitamin D
production. The average person needs about 5000 units of vitamin D
daily. You make approximately 20,000 units of vitamin D after 15 minutes
of summer sun.
Depending on the color of your skin (darker skin requires longer exposure
times) this brief sun exposure should be adequate for healthy vitamin D
production in the spring and summer months. In the fall and winter,
vitamin D supplementation is about the only way to keep blood levels
within the normal range.
3. Supplementing with Vitamin D3
Vitamin D3 is readily available from health food stores and is
inexpensive. It's always recommended to have your doctor check your
vitamin D3 levels before taking supplements. Excess vitamin D3 can be
harmful to your body.
Vitamin D from Food
It is almost impossible to get enough vitamin D from your food alone. For
all practical purposes, Vitamin D must come from either sun exposure or
supplementation. Here are the primary foods that are naturally high in
vitamin D listed in International Units (IU): Salmon (3 1/2 oz.) 360 IU;
Mackerel (3 1/2 oz.) 345 IU; Sardines (3 1/2 oz.) 270 IU; Fortified juice
(8 oz.) 100 IU; Milk (8 oz.) 98 IU; Egg yolk 25 IU
To learn more about vitamin D go to: www.vitamindcouncil.com.
Try these healthy lifestyle changes for 30 days. Feel what it is like
to become part of the health solution rather than a health burden. If you
need additional suggestions and advice on living a healthier lifestyle, email
or call me for a no cost consultation, at 703-628-2880 or email to
Give the Gift of Health!
Posture Perfect!TM Classes...
Looking for the perfect healthy birthday gift for someone?
Consider purchasing a gift certificate for one or several
Posture Perfect!TM classes. Gift certificate amounts start
at $20. This is the perfect gift, the gift of health, to give
to someone you love.
Upcoming Events and News
Workshop Series... There's No Place Like Home
Our next There's No Place Like Home workshop is scheduled for
August 26th, 2014 at Congregation Beth Emeth. Pat Williams of
GraceFul Care and I will be answering your questions and providing
valuable information on how to safely and comfortably stay in
Pat and I believe that your home is your castle and, for many
beneficial reasons, you want to stay there as long as possible.
Deciding to stay at home may be one of the biggest life decisions
you will ever make.
Fortunately, we are here to help you plan and make good decisions
allowing you to stay in your own home for as long as you want.
In our workshop we will discuss the many health and quality of life
benefits of staying in the comfort of your own home rather than
moving to a retirement facility. We will outline the logical and
important steps necessary to keep you in your home.
Just like we tell all of our clients, "You Can Stay, We Can Help!
Recent research has shed some interesting light on the darker side of
retirement home living. Everything from higher costs to the loss of
personal freedom and independence has been examined in these
recent reports. These reports have determined that living in a
retirement setting is not as easy or as glamorous as you might think.
Click Here to read more about our wonderful, new program.
Beginner Posture Perfect!TM Classes in Herndon,
Reston and Arlington
We have beginner Posture Perfect!TM classes in Herndon, Reston and
Arlington. Take your first class for FREE and see how much taller, more
balanced and relaxed you feel afterwards. To register please contact
Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please wear comfortable clothes and bring a face and bath towel,
a bottle of water and an exercise mat if you have one.
I am offering in-home health-based exercise instruction for
those who cannot leave their home. Contact me to find out more!
Posture Perfect!TM for Spinomed Program
I have created a new companion back strengthening exercise program to
help anyone wearing the Spinomed orthosis. The classes include helpful tips
on getting the most from your Spinomed as well as exercises that help
strengthen your back, improve your posture and increase your balance.
Click Here to learn more about this exciting program.
Posture Perfect!TM First Class FREE
If you have never tried Posture Perfect!TM you owe it to yourself to
come to one of our convenient classes and see how good it makes you
feel. We want you to give us a try so come take your first Posture Perfect!TM
class for FREE. It's on us... so what do you have to lose?
RESERVATIONS are REQUIRED
Please call Woody McMahon at 703.628.2880 or email to
email@example.com for more information or to make
The FREE Posture Perfect!TM class helps introduce you to the many
benefits of our safe and effective posture, balance and strength program
co-developed by Sara Meeks, PT and Woody McMahon, personal trainer.
Come and experience how each class can help strengthen your bones,
improve your balance, alleviate backaches and neck pains, improve
osteoporosis and teach you how to sit and stand-up straighter.
The History of Posture Perfect!TM
When I developed the Posture Perfect!TM classes over 2 years ago, there
were no safe and effective exercise programs available for "over age 50" adults.
Everywhere I looked there were older adults in classes that used seated
exercises (bad for your back); machine style exercises (bad for your balance)
treadmills (a poor hip and leg strengthener); and performed movements
that involved crunching, bending and twisting. (increases the risk of spinal
Posture Perfect!TM solved all of these problems by offering a safe and effective
approach helping older adults become more active. Each class improves your
posture, strengthens your bones, enhances your balance, alleviates back
aches and neck pains, reduces fracture risk and teaches you how to sit
and stand-up straighter.
We have several people in our current classes who are coming to strengthen
their bones and over half of the others are interested in exercises and posture
changes to help make their backs and necks feel better.
Please call Woody McMahon at 703-628-2880 or email to
firstname.lastname@example.org for more information, class times and reservations.
Posture Perfect!TM Testimonials...
Posture Perfect's! momentum continues to grow. Here is a glowing testimonial
from one of our class members.
"Posture Perfect!TM class has not only met my expectations, but exceeded
them! There are several reasons I enjoy the class. The small class size
gives each of us extraordinary personalized training; your knowledge,
expertise, patience, and sense of humor makes me look forward to
coming to a class I thought would be only for 6 weeks; and I have
learned so much more than I expected."
"For example, I now think about my posture every time I sit, and just when
I thought I'd begin to have a hard time rising from sitting on the floor, you
taught me how to make it easier. I try to practice some of the balance
exercises a couple of times a week (I know, I should do it more often!).
I thank you for all I have learned from you so far, and hope to continue
this class for the foreseeable future!"
Click Here to read more about S.A.F.E. and effective Posture Perfect!TM
Continued Good Health,
The Sequoia Advisor
Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.
483A Carlisle Drive
Required Disclaimer: The material provided herein should not be construed
as a health-care diagnosis, treatment regimen or any other prescribed
health-care advice or instruction. The material is provided with the
understanding that the publisher is not engaged in the practice of medicine
or any other health-care profession and does not enter into a health-care
practitioner/patient relationship with its readers. The publisher does not
advise or recommend to its readers treatment or action with regard to
matters relating to their health or well-being other than suggesting that
readers consult appropriate health-care professionals in such matters. No
action should be taken based solely on the content of this publication. The
material and opinions provided herein are believed to be accurate and sound
at the time of publication, based on the best judgment available to the
authors. However, readers who rely on material in this publication to
replace the advice of health-care professionals, or who fail to consult
with health-care professionals, assume all risks of such conduct. The
publisher is not responsible for errors or omissions.
Copyright (c) 2006-2014 by Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.
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