Top 10 Tools for Coping with Stress

With so many things going on in your day, stress can easily build and become a usual part of your life. While occasional stress can be positive and can motivate you to meet your goals, prolonged stress can have a negative effect. In this week’s post, HealthTap doctors offer ten tips and tricks to help you find ways to unwind. As Sydney J. Harris put it, “the time to relax is when you don’t have time for it.”

What can I do to de-stress?

Relaxation_techniques“Reducing stress is one of the best ways to enhance health. Avoid stressful situations if possible, meditate, exercise, eat well, get enough sleep, take time out for pleasure, seek support/counsel from friends, family& professionals. Do your best to live in the present moment. Herbs like ashwagandha & holy basil & supps like magnesium & b complex often help. Read books like full catastrophe living.” - Dr. Randy S. Baker

“To my mind stress is consequence of a mind ruled by the physical body. People subjected to stress and affected by stess should study relaxation therapies and biofeedback. An internet service at heartmath.Com is an effective training tool. Perhaps the all time most useful book has been “the relaxation response” by Harvard professor Herbert Benson.” - Dr. Laurence Badgley

HealthTap“Exercise regularly, at least 40 to 50 minutes, 4 to 6 times a week in your target zone, a little breathy. Eat a plant based diet, get plenty of rest, and try to perceive as accurately as possible, as our misperceptions drive anxiety and stress. Best.” - Dr. Arthur Ciaramicoli

“A certain amount of stress is normal, however unchecked, stress can cause and contribute to disease. Anxiety, hypertension, lowered immune response are all linked to stress. The best remedy for stress is mindfulness and meditation. Meditation can come in many forms from breathing, to yoga, and even sustained exercise. Whatever you choose, sustained stress management is the best prevention.” - Dr. Maiysha Clairborne

“1. Stress management techniques: relaxation exercises, meditation, mindfulness, thankfulness journals. 2. Letting go of problems that are not ours to solve; solve problems with solutions one step at a time; releasing unnecessary worry by setting realistic goals. 3. Using social support to help us manage stress and give us perspective 4. Self help materials. 5. Time for oneself. 6.Exercise.” - Dr. Kathryn Seifert

HealthTap“It is often helpful to take time out during a day when you feel stressed, and even if you do not, to focus and center yourself with a brief period of meditation and relaxation. Even 5 minutes during your work day can help you recharge and re-focus your energies in a positive direction.” - Dr. Kristine Gerwell

Manage stress with E-A-S-E. 1) Eliminate the stressor from your life (be assertive; delegate; take breaks & vacations) 2) Alter the impact of the stressor (problem solving; time management; social/group action); 3) Shift your outlook (reduce unrealistic expectations, irrational beliefs & negative self-talk); and 4) Ease your response (relaxation, exercise & good nutrition). Counseling can help.” – Dr. Bob Stewart

“Stress is your reaction to things that happen in life. So it’s best to make sure you are doing the right things to react better. Start with eating fresh wholesome foods, make sure you get some type of exercise (walking is great) 2-3 times per week, and look up sleep hygiene to get tools to use for restful sleep. If you need medication have a plan with your doctor for when to stop.” – Dr. Troy W. Ross

Relaxing at home with cup of teaTip Taps

Do’s and Don’ts

“How to de-stress?  Go for a 10 minute walk in nature, or a park.  It can help clear your head.”  - Dr. Pamela A. Pappas

Interesting Fact

“Develop a good pre-sleep ritual. A good book, a cup of tea, anything that helps you relax/unwind.” - Dr. Marlis Gonzalez-Fernandez

Looking for more ways to de-stress? Visit HealthTap and ask a question today!


 

AppRx: 5 Free Android Running Apps

runEvery week, we bring you AppRx—high-quality health, fitness and wellness apps reviewed and recommended by HealthTap’s network of 60,000 top doctors. In this week’s edition, we take a look at 5 of the best free Android running apps.

 

 

 

 


1. RunKeeper – GPS Track Run Walk

AppRx | RunKeeper - GPS Track Run Walk | HealthTapDescription: Join the more than 17 million people who are using RunKeeper to turn their phone into a personal trainer in their pocket! Track your running, walking, cycling, hiking, biking and more using the GPS activities and have fun doing it. Learn More.

Recommended By: 159 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE


2. Sports Tracker

AppRx | Sports Tracker | HealthTapDescription: Turn your mobile into a social sports computer with Sports Tracker. Track and analyze your performance, share workout data and photos with your friends on social media. Join the growing global Sports Tracker community and have fun getting fit! Learn More.

Recommended By: 19 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE


3. MapMyRun GPS Running

AppRx | MapMyRun GPS Running | HealthTapDescription: Use their route search feature to find nearby places to run. You can filter routes by type or length, examine elevation graphs, and leaderboards. Your runs sync automatically with www.mapmyrun.com. MapMyRun+ is great for fitness, jogging, weight loss, calorie counting, training, and more, and is an integral part of the MapMyRUN platform, by MapMyFitness. Learn More.

Recommended By: 18 Doctors
Available On: Android – FREE


4. Pedometer Plus

AppRx | Pedometer Plus | HealthTapDescription: Pedometer Plus is the definitive application to measure your exercise. Pedometer Plus records the distance, number of steps, calories, current speed, and time of your run. GPS is an optional feature. Learn More.

Recommended By: 14 Doctors
Available On: Android – FREE


5. Trainer PRO Run, Walk, Bike

AppRx |  Trainer PRO Run, Walk, Bike | HealthTapDescription: If you want to improve your fitness, go for a walk any time or even to be trained for a competitive race Android Trainer is all you need! During training you can listen to your favorite music and/or details of training. A voice will inform you about distance, speed, pace, inclination, heart rate, and calories burned. With Android Trainer you will be able to keep an eye on your weight loss and check your progress with all functions. Learn More.

Recommended By: 13 Doctors
Available On: Android – FREE


For more Apps to help you run better, visit HealthTap today!  And stay tuned for next week’s edition, Doctor-Recommended Alternative Medicine Apps!

AppRx: Top 10 Apps to Help You Quit Smoking

QuitSmoking

 

 

 

 

 

Every week, we bring you AppRx—high-quality health, fitness and wellness apps reviewed and recommended by HealthTap’s network of 60,000 top doctors. In this week’s edition, we take a look at the Top 10 Apps to Help You Quit Smoking.

1. LIVESTRONG MyQuit CoachAppRx | LIVESTRONG MyQuit Coach | HealthTap

Description: The LIVESTRONG.COM MyQuit Coach application creates a personalized plan to help you quit smoking. Through a physician approved, interactive and easy to use app, you’ll finally be able to stop smoking. You will have the option to choose to quit smoking right away or gradually decrease your daily nicotine intake, tracking the times you smoke and have nicotine cravings along the way. Personalized inspirational photos, motivational tips and progress charts will provide help and keep you on track while achievement badges will reward you for progress. And you’re not alone with a built in social support circle and the option to update your Facebook and Twitter as friends cheer you on. When you are ready to stop smoking, let MyQuit Coach be your guide. Learn More. Recommended By: 39 Doctors Available on: iOS – FREE

2. Quit ProAppRx | Quit Pro | HealthTap

Description: Quit Pro is a brand new approach to help you quit smoking. Quit Pro helps you monitor your progress, understand when, why and where you smoke, as well as read motivation quotes to help you quit smoking. Learn More. Recommended By: 31 Doctors Available on: iOS – FREE

3. Stop Smoking with Self Hypnosis

AppRx | Stop Smoking with Self Hypnosis | HealthTapDescription: If you’re tired of your cigarette addiction, want to be healthy, and want to stop wasting money on a bad habit, check out this new app. Nicotine Addiction Hypnosis, Subliminal, and Guided Meditation will help you stop cravings for nicotine, ease your mood swings, and boost your energy and motivation to stop your habit once and for all. You have the power to quit smoking, lose weight, and live a healthy, happy life with the power of self-hypnosis. Learn More. Recommended By: 23 Doctors Available on: iOS – $2.99

4. Quit Smoking – Cold Turkey (Lite Version)

AppRx | Quit Smoking - Cold Turkey (Lite Version) | HealthTapDescription: No need for gum, mints or super-human willpower. Just go “Cold Turkey”! Cold Turkey for iPhone is a mobile application that helps you quit smoking. Whenever you feel a craving coming on, just press the “Help! I Feel Like Smoking!” button in the main menu and Cold Turkey springs into action, giving you real, workable tips you can use to crush cravings and ease withdrawal symptoms. Learn More. Recommended By: 23 Doctors Available on: iOS – $0.99

5. Quit Smoking

AppRx | Quit Smoking | HealthTapDescription: Quit Smoking helps you to quit smoking by showing you the money and time you have saved since you quit, and also demonstrates the health benefits over time! Learn More. Recommended By: 13 Doctors Available on: Android – FREE

6. Sick of Smoking

AppRx | Sick of Smoking | HealthTapDescription: Sick of Smoking includes three popular methods to help you quit smoking: scheduled reduction or tapering, which creates a series of cigarette appointments for each day, cold turkey, which provides tips to help maximize your chances of quitting, and hypnosis, which features two hypnotic sessions with or without soothing background sounds. Learn More. Recommended By: 11 Doctors Available on: iOS – $0.99

7. Quit Now! Pro

AppRx | Quit Now! Pro | HealthTapDescription: QuitNow! offers you real-time status, anytime, to help you cope with anxiety. QuitNow! will also provide you with W.H.O.-based (UN’s World Health Organization) indicators on your health improvement process, and an achievement list you will unlock one by one, as time passes, motivating you to achieve your goal. Most importantly, QuitNow! is social; you can share your status and achievements with your friends. Learn More. Recommended By: 10 Doctors Available on: Android – $5.95 | iOS – FREE

8. Stop Smoking Pro

AppRx | Stop Smoking Pro | HealthTapDescription: This app takes participants through a Seven-Day Step-by-Step program to change daily habits and achieve their goal to quit smoking. Through psychological motivations (such as affirmation statements) and physical changes (such as dietary modifications), the Seven-Day Plan works to break the participants smoking routine and eliminate cigarette cravings. You can breathe better, have fewer digestive problems, feel more energy, prevent heart problems, lung cancer and other cancers, eliminate bad breath, have fewer wrinkles, remove the yellow teeth and fingers, etc. Learn More. Recommended By: 9 Doctors Available on: iOS – $3.99

9. Quit-Smoking Coach

AppRx | Quit-Smoking Coach | HealthTapDescription: This app supports you on your mission of becoming a nonsmoker. It provides real-time information about your smoking status and the benefits you earn through nonsmoking. Let it remind you daily of statistics about your quit status: cigarettes renounced to, money saved, health summary, etc. Learn More. Recommended By: 5 Doctors Available on: Android – $0.99

10. Stop! Quit Smoking GOLD

AppRx | Stop! Quit Smoking GOLD | HealthTapDescription: This app helps you quit smoking using a sophisticated reward system. Features real-time displays of saved money, time saved, and non-smoked cigarettes, and a motivating achievement system to track the progress of your achievements. Learn More. Recommended By: 5 Doctors Available on: Android – $0.99   For more Apps to help you quit smoking, visit HealthTap today!  And stay tuned for next week’s edition, 5 Free Running Apps!

7 Answers to your Healthy Eating Questions

There’s no better time to start eating healthy than today, and with HealthTap at your fingertips, it’s easier than ever to get started. We’ve compiled a list of some popular questions about eating healthy here. Whether you are beginning to incorporate healthier foods into your diet or if you’re a seasoned healthy eater who is looking for some new handy tips, HealthTap has the answers you’re looking for. Bon appétit!

What are some tips to establish healthy eating habits?

“Limit carbs and minimize the intake of red meat, increase dietary protein, reduce the use of salt, no sodas diet or regular and get to the gym. In the gym do cardio 3x a week and strength training 3-4 times a week. It you can afford it, a personal trainer can help at least get you started with how to train.” – Dr. Ronald Krauser

Woman putting tray of roast vegetables in oven

 

Will eating healthy and exercising cause weight loss?

“As long as you are eating an appropriate amount for your desire weight then it should promote weight loss. One can eat healthy foods in excess and still not lose weight. Eating healthy foods in moderation along with moderate exercise is the best solution to long term health.” – Dr. Lisa Saponaro

 

How can we develop healthy eating habits in schoolchildren?

“Children’s palettes take a while to develop. Putting too much pressure on them to eat a variety of foods when they don’t want to could wind up having the opposite of your intended effect. That said, set a great example. Offer lots of choices. And make it fun. Because if it’s fun you’re likely to enroll them. If it’s a burden, you’re likely to push them in the wrong direction.” – Dr. Rick Kirschner

Family eating a meal together at home

 

What might I do to go from eating fast food everyday to eating healthy?

“Gradually may be the best way. Eliminating processed foods, sweets and calorie-rich drinks from your home can provide incentives by focusing attention on the “things” to avoid. Logging success in avoiding them often provides wonderful added motivation to sustain your new healthy behaviors. “baby steps, ” though, as they say. Slow and steady wins the race! and it will over time. Good luck!” – Dr. James Henning

 

Can you offer good tips on avoiding junk food and eating healthier?

“You can make the switch to a healthy diet rich in fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, beans, legumes, lentils, low fat milk products any time you wish to. Curtail intake of saturated fats; no tobacco and no more than one drink a day. Exercise 30 minutes/day. It may help to join a support group for reinforcement.” - Dr. Gurmukh Singh

 

Is there a reason why I am gaining weight from eating healthy and working out?

“You may be eating healthy but still eating too much. Check your portion size, particularly portions of high carb fruits and veggies. Drink adequate water to burn fat. Muscle is heavier than fat, so you may have extra weight by fat conversion. Have your thyroid tested and be sure your TSH is less than 3.0 for optional thyroid function in your body.” – Dr. Sherri Tenpenny

Father preparing breakfast for family in the kitchen

What is a good healthy eating plan for me?

“We are all biochemically unique and there is no diet that works for everyone. I would start with an elimination diet and write down if you can identify foods that does not agree with your body and eliminate them. Avoid all processed food, learn how to read food labels, do not drink calories (i.e. Drink water), try to eat mostly organic and maybe join healthy cooking class. Best wishes!” – Dr. Daniel Kessler

 

Have another question about healthy eating? Ask our doctors now!

7 Quick Tips to Avoid Eye Injuries

July is Eye Injury Prevention Month! Your eyes are incredibly sensitive and can be injured very easily; this is especially true in the summer months when you are spending lots of time outside. Here are seven quick tips to prevent eye injuries and keep your eyes safe all year long.

Older woman pruning bushes in the garden with sun hat and sunglasses

How can I prevent an eye injury when working in the garden?

“Most eye injuries in the garden are from branches striking the unprotected eye. So wear safety glasses and be alert. Also take caution around things like lawn mowers and power equipment which may launch something towards your eye. Note also that someone near you could be affected by debris set flying by a lawnmower or cutting machinery like power saws.” – Dr. Richard E. Bensinger

What is the best protective eye wear whilst doing sports?

“Each sport that risks the eyes has unique protective gear. A hockey player needs different protection than a racquetball player.” – Dr. Tim Conrad

How can I prevent eye injuries in my workshop?Protective Eye Wear

“Wear safety glasses, goggles, or face shields when you hammer nails or metal, work with power tools or chemicals, or do any activity that might cause a burn to your eyes. If you work with hazardous chemicals that could splash into your eyes, know how to flush chemicals out, and know the location of the nearest shower or sink.” – Dr. Michael H. T. Sia

Why is there excessive tearing after eye trauma?

“The eye tears when it’s irritated. This can occur immediately from dirt or a scratch on the surface of the eye. It can be sensitive to light and tear the next day from a bruise of the eye as well. If something is poking the eye like an eyelash the eye can tear. Finally, if the eye is having trouble closing it can dry out and tear. Most often, tearing from trauma is transient.” – Dr. Scott M. Goldtstein

Can you suggest activities for someone on bed rest for eye injury?

“Depends. You need to ask your treating ophthalmologist what the limits of activity are for you which depends upon the extent of the injury and the means, medical or surgical, used to treat it. A good chance for communication and to learn isometric exercise.” – Dr. Richard E. Bensinger

What are common symptoms of an eye injury?Eye exam

“Depending on the structure injured, and the nature of the injury, symptoms can include blurred vision, pain, redness of the eye, tearing, loss of central or peripheral vision, among others. Treatment depends on the nature and degree of the injury, but can include drops, patching, special bandage contact lenses, or surgery.” – Dr. Jeffrey B. Paul

How likely to develop glaucoma after eye injury?

“The link between blunt trauma recession of the anterior chamber angle and secondary glaucoma was established by wolff and zimmerman in 1962. The risk is 3-4% in the first year and 10% later on. Other eye trauma features associated with increased risk are hyphema (blood in the anterior chamber), excess pigment clogging the trabecular meshwork, elevated baseline eye pressure, and lens displacement.” – Dr. Harold Peltan

Can someone get an eye injury due to contact lens?

“If overused (like sleeping in them) and not correctly cleaned, you are at risk for a corneal infection which can lead to scarring.”  - Dr. Richard Scartozzi

Looking for more ways to treat or prevent eye injuries? Ask our doctors now!