Don’t Let Summer Strain Your Back

Summer is the time when everyone dives into yard work and takes family vacations. But all that time spent bending, lifting and traveling can strain your back, spine experts say.

An estimated 3.7 million Americans sought care for back pain and injuries at doctors’ offices in the summer of 2014, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS).

“Many back injuries occur from sudden movements during daily activities such as bending, lifting and twisting,” said Dr. Afshin Razi, a spokesperson for the academy.

“Always be mindful of the way you’re positioning your body and practice safe lifting techniques during these motions. Keep the core muscles in your back and abdomen strong and flexible. Strengthening your core muscles will help to support your spine,” Razi said in an AAOS news release.

The academy offers these tips for protecting yourself from back injuries during the summer:

  • Lift heavy items with your legs instead of your back, and don’t bend over. Bend your knees instead and keep your back straight.
  • Get someone to help you lift heavy objects. Turn to your friends or family or hire someone to assist.
  • Pack as lightly as possible when traveling, and try to spread heavier items among several boxes or bags.
  • Take breaks, regardless of whether you’re sitting or working, and stretch between tasks.
  • Watch your posture and sit with your back in a slightly arched position. Your chair should support your lower back and your head and shoulders should be upright.
  • Be careful about your footwear. Your shoes should fit properly and have rubber non-skid soles to protect you from falling, especially when you’re traveling or working outdoors.
  • If you’re outside, make sure hoses, rakes and garden tools are out of your path so you don’t trip over them.
  • Pets like to be underfoot and can pose a tripping hazard. Consider putting a bell on your pet so you know its location when it’s moving around.

Source: HealthDay

The New Summer Food Trends

Saffron Alexander wrote . . . . . .

Summer is officially here and that means we all have weeks of alfresco dining and BBQ smoke staining your clothes ahead of us. But what will you be serving your friends and family this year?

To keep you ahead of all the latest trends guaranteed to make a splash on social media, social media site Pinterest have revealed its Summer Entertaining Report, offering its projections for the season and helping to give you all the ideas you need to make your barbecue or picnic memorable this year.

Decorative ice

Long gone are the days when ice was added to drinks to keep it cool. Nowadays, ice can serve as a way of livening up your glass simply by adding some fruits or herbs to your ice tray.

If fruits and herbs aren’t your thing, consider adding some food colouring to your trays to create a multi-coloured, Instagram perfect display in your glass.

For those with small children, the same can also be done with homemade ice lollies.

According to Pinterest, photographs of decorative ice are up 82 per cent across the site.

Edible flowers

Up 31 per cent this year are edible flowers. According to the experts at Pinterest they’re key to making “your guests feel extra special” this summer.

And, if that fails, at least you can guarantee your dishes will make both a tasty and eye-catching centrepiece on your table.

No more buns

The reign of the brioche bun is finally over, with bunless BBQ’s seeing an increase of 52 per cent on the site this year.

These days your favourite meats at being served straight from the grill and into a bowl. This often works out easier for the chef and it’s healthier for the guests (your gluten-free friends will thank you for it too).

Farewell BBQ sauce

There was once a time where BBQ sauce reigned supreme at garden parties all over the country, but not anymore. Pinterest has seen a 55 per cent increase in sauces with Middle Eastern flavours and claims Harissa and tzatziki are the new staple barbecue condiments this year.

Harissa is a hot chilli pepper paste made from red, Baklouti and serrano peppers and a variety of spices and herbs including coriander seed, saffron and caraway. It is most commonly found used in Tunisia, Libya, Algeria and Morocco.

Tzatziki is made using salted strained or diluted yogurt mixed with cucumbers, garlic, salt and olive oil and is usually served with grilled meat or as a dip.

Smoked everything

And we mean everything.

According to Pinterest, people are “smoking everything from mac and cheese to onion rings and cocktails” and the site has seen a 170 per cent increase of smoked food posts.

Upcycled fruit

The upcycling trend makes its way to the kitchen with Pinterest reporting a 37 per cent increase in upcycled fruit posts.

If you’ve got some watermelon destined for the bin, consider getting creative with it and turning it into a healthy smoothie bowl or even a fruity cocktail.

Source: The Telegraph

30 Worst Summer Foods For Your Belly

April Benshosan wrote . . . . . .

Avoid these instant belly bloaters to keep your body beach ready.

1. Cruciferous Veggies

Think about how you feel after eating broccoli, kale, cabbage, or cauliflower. If the first word that comes to mind is “bloated,” then you’re like the most of us. “Humans don’t possess the enzyme to break down raffinose, a complex sugar commonly found in cruciferous vegetables,” clinical nutritionist Jennifer Cassetta, CN, MS explains. “So when these vegetables get to the lower intestine, they’re fermented by bacteria and produce methane, carbon dioxide and hydrogen, which leads to gas.”

2. Salty Snacks

Before you stuff that big bag of chips into your beach bag, reconsider. Many salty snacks contain MSG, a harmful additive that’s been linked to an increased appetite and weight gain. Doritos just may be the worst because the delectable recipe was specially formulated so that each flavor comes through equally. And researchers believe that when foods lack a leading or single overpowering flavor, snackers are less likely to feel satiated and therefore are apt to eat more. In some cases, surprisingly, eating more can actually lead to weight loss. See how in our report, 30 Ways to Eat More and Lose Weight.

3. Coffee

We’re big fans of coffee on the reg (hey, it’s a low-cal pick-me-up that can even help curb a distracting appetite), but it’s better off to skip your cup o’ Joe before the beach. According to a study in Gut journal, “Coffee has been shown to promote the release of gastrin, which can increase colonic spike and motor activity,” which basically means that the java will result in you having to hit the bathroom way more often. And we all know how hard it is to find a clean public bathroom at the beach.

4. Sweet Tea

Just like coffee, tea acts as a diuretic, which will make your body expel salt and water, resulting in dehydration. Dehydration + sun’s rays = definitely not a good mix! If you just can’t go without your caffeine fix, make sure to drink lots of water along with it.

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Read more at Yahoo! . . . . .