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Paul Matkovic, your Chiropractor in Ryde, NSW has written some interesting blogs that will inform you optimal ways to achieve good health and wellbeing.

If you would like to learn more about Chiropractic or if you have a topic that you would like to learn more about in our next blog, please phone to chat to Paul on 02 9874 1519 during office hours. Alternatively you can also email him at info@backtohealthclinic.com.au

Sciatica: Is it the ‘true’ cause of your low back pain?

Sciatica: Is it the ‘true’ cause of your low back pain?

Low back pain is probably the most common complaint that chiropractors and other health professionals deal with from clients on a day to day basis and when most people with low back pain present to the clinic quite often they self-diagnose their pain as ‘sciatica’ or that they have a ‘pinched nerve’. However following a through clinical examination it is quite clear 95% of the time that patients don’t actually have sciatica, in fact most low back pain is caused by an inflamed muscle, ligament or joint in the lower spine. Sciatica on the other hand is a compression or impingement of the nerve roots of the sciatic nerve when it leaves the spinal column, usually by a protruding or damaged intervertebral disc. So then, how do you spot the difference between simple low back pain compared to low back pain caused by sciatica? There are a few notable signs and symptoms that are only present with sciatica, so we have identified a few tips that provide tell tail signs of ‘true’ sciatica; Constant & Relentless Pain: True sciatica is much more painful than simple low back pain due to the constant prolonged nature of the pain where it seems nothing you try works in relieving the pain. Patients with sciatica are often left very tired and cranky as they are not able to sleep due to the relenting nature of the pain. Usually when the pain reaches this level of intensity, decompressive surgery is quite often the only option.   Both Numbness and Weakness of One Leg: When the sciatic nerve is compressed you will experience both numbness... read more
Low Back Pain: A Step Wise Approach

Low Back Pain: A Step Wise Approach

Low back pain is one of the most common health complaints that people have with almost 80% of individuals developing low back pain at some point in their lives. The most alarming statistic though is that 30% of these individuals will go on to develop chronic back pain, therefore the pain will never fully subside!   There is a lot of confusion surrounding how to manage low back pain, particularly what to do when you first start to experience pain in your low back. This is the most critically stage, as an improper initial diagnosis or treatment will dramatically increase your chances of the low back pain staying around for good!   Since I help manage my patients’ low back pain almost everyday and hear the conflicting advice that they receive, I have outlined below a simple step wise approach on how to tackle the first signs of low back pain. Please keep in mind that this is a general guideline and if you have any questions, you can forward them to our email address at info@backtohealthclinic.com.au or you can speak to your trusted health professional.   • Step 1: Diagnosis   It’s so important to receive a proper diagnosis for your low back pain. So before you start to search on Dr. Google, you need to see your GP or Allied health professional (physiotherapist, chiropractor, osteopath) as they will be able to give you a proper diagnosis.   However one of the key issues I experience with diagnosis of a patient’s low back pain is how quickly people are referred for MRI’s and x-rays of their low back.... read more
How to reduce your waistline for summer?

How to reduce your waistline for summer?

It’s a very sobering fact that more than 65% of us are either overweight or obese and unfortunately that comes with a very unwanted side effect in the form of ‘tummy’ fat or increased abdominal adipose tissue which increases our waistline. As the summer months fast approach, many of us will be trying to get rid of excess fat around the waist so we can fit in our summer clothes or just simply stroll down the beach without feeling self-conscious. However there are also important health concerns when dealing with increased abdominal fat, as this fat can begin to accumulate around your internal organs and have devastating consequences for your health. One of the main bodily processes that increased abdominal fat contributes to is ‘inflammation’, and when present over a long term period, inflammation can lead to the development of heart disease in the form of high blood pressure and high cholesterol, the development of Type 2 Diabetes, increasing the risk of stroke and even cancer! So then the question arises; ‘How do I get rid of my tummy fat and reduce my waistline?’ Well the good news is that you can reduce your waistline yourself, however the bad news is that it will take a bit of effort from your part! So to make things easier for you, here are some simple things that you can do to get rid of that unwanted waist line for good; Measure: You need to know where your at when wanting to reduce your waistline. So before you start, measure your waist circumference at the level of your belly button. If your... read more
Type 2 Diabetes and Exercise – What exercise is most effective?

Type 2 Diabetes and Exercise – What exercise is most effective?

With Type 2 Diabetes fast becoming one of the most prevalent diseases in the western world today, there has been extensive research to find out the best way of managing this disease and also preventing it from developing in the first place. Type 2 Diabetes results when the hormone ‘Insulin’ is unable to properly store sugar in our muscles and liver, which results in sugar remaining in our bloodstream causing havoc to almost every system in our body. We all know that both a healthy diet and medication use play an important role in the management of Type 2 Diabetes, however little of us know about the role exercise can play. Most doctors and health professionals would advise their Type 2 Diabetic patients to exercise. However from the patient feedback that I receive, most of the exercise advice is quite general, for example; ‘Walk everyday’ or ‘jog a few times a week’. This type of exercise advice doesn’t seem to take into account the patient’s needs and, with what current research states, is not effective in managing Type 2 Diabetes. So what type of exercise is most effective in managing Type 2 Diabetes? Extensive research into this area has shown that in fact ‘resistance exercise’ is most effective in lowering blood sugar levels and improving the function of Insulin. Resistance exercise in this case applies to any exercise where an external weight is lifted, like a dumbbell or barbell. The research goes on to say that if 7-10 resistance exercises are performed 3 times per week, persons with Type 2 Diabetes will see a dramatic decrease of up to... read more

Muscle Cramps can be eased with Magnesium

Almost on a daily basis I hear people complaining about waking up in the middle of the night with severe muscles cramps, most commonly in the calf muscles. Staying hydrated, daily exercise and stretches can help alleviate these symptoms, however there is an even easier way of saying goodbye to the cramps forever and getting a peaceful nights sleep! It is a mineral called ‘Magnesium’ which is mostly found in our muscles and bones. The main role magnesium plays in our body is in creating new proteins, stabilising blood pressure and maintaining optimal nerve and muscle function. So when our levels start to decrease, it’s our muscles and nerves that notice it the most which results in those dreaded muscle cramps! The best ways to top up your magnesium levels is to eat plenty of non refined foods such as green leafy vegetables, mushrooms, legumes, nuts, wholegrains and bananas. So why not top up your magnesium levels by having a banana everyday! Managing muscle cramps through magnesium supplements is also an option. I recommended taking magnesium before bed as it will help your body and mind relax before sleeping. However if you are on medication, particularly for high blood pressure, it is best to get magnesium from dietary sources. Finally, performing daily calve and hamstring stretches once or twice per day as well as walking daily will help improve the muscle strength and reduce the chance of cramping for good! All muscular stretching exercises should be held for 20 seconds to obtain best results and also try not to shorten your walking time, those people that walk for 45... read more
How to lose weight in just 20 minutes!

How to lose weight in just 20 minutes!

Tired of slugging away at the gym hours on end or don’t have the time to exercise??? Well there may be a fast and effective way of losing those unwanted kilos and improving your health. There is a type of exercise that only takes 20 minutes to do, three times per week. What is it do you say??? It’s called High Intensity Interval Training or ‘HIIT’. This type of exercise involves performing high intensity training in short bursts in between periods of low intensity exercise. And the great thing about this exercise is that it can be done in the gym on a exercise bike or at home with a simple step! All you need to do is pedal or step as fast as you can for 15 sec and then pedal or step very slowly for 15 seconds! Studies have shown that HIIT is 6 times more effective then steady state exercise in reducing fat, improving insulin function and aerobic fitness. In one study, the average weight loss of a group of female subjects performing HIIT for 12 weeks was 4kg with 2 participants losing more then 9kg! So what are you waiting for?!?! Start moving today and enjoy your new healthy body tomorrow! Check out our weight loss services to help you shed those extra kilos. We run exercise classes in our Ryde clinic, we also have a gym where you can get personlised service tailored to your specific needs. Reference: Hyman, M. (2006). Ultra-metabolism.  Schwartz Publishing. ISBN: 978 1 86395 318... read more