Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

  • I teach Nia, yoga and stretch! SIX group classes a week!

    Nia: Tues and Thurs at 9 am, Fri at 10:15 am

    Yoga: Tues at 10:30 am and Thurs at 6:00 pm

    Stretch: Thurs at 10:15 am

    Please see my website for details! I sub for the City of San Jose and the YMCA so check my website for dates and times!

    I am also available for private Nia / yoga / Personal Training!

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Posts Tagged ‘high blood pressure’

Blood Pressure On My Mind

Posted by terrepruitt on May 28, 2018

It is believed that hypertension AKA high blood pressure puts you at risk for heart attack and stroke. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website, whose statistics are from 2015, Heart disease was the number one cause of death in the United States. Stroke was the fifth cause of death. The site does say “The 10 leading causes of death in 2016 remained the same as in 2015”. Although I don’t see any statistics on the break down of the heart disease deaths. How many were from heart conditions that were present at birth? How many were from injury to the heart? What are they considering “heart disease”? I mean, I would think that someone would what the “heart disease” numbers broken down into specific categories. Where is that information? Anyway, for some reason I am thinking about blood pressure. Could be because I was going through my pictures and a came across a picture I took of some information regarding truth and myths about high blood pressure.

It basically said that it is myth to think high blood pressure is normal and not dangerous. Untreated high blood pressure is dangerous. In addition to it possibly leading to heart disease and stroke it could damage the heart and/or kidneys. And according to that it could lead to a loss of vision.

Also . . . and this one is a HUGE common belief that they are labeling a myth, the one where “it runs in my family”. I’ve heard so many people say that it runs in their family so they just accept having it. As if there is nothing they can do about it. There is an actual belief out there that people CAN do something about it whether it is a family thing or not.

Another myth that the picture brings up is that if the symptoms such as nervousness or sweating are not present then there is not high blood pressure. But high blood pressure is nicknamed the silent killer because people can have it and not know. And, again, untreated high blood pressure can be dangerous. It is like your body being under assault all the time.

I just looked at the American Heart Association’s website they adjusted the numbers since I posted Blood Pressure Monitors – It’s All In the Wrist in 2012. They changed the numbers and the categories or what they call the numbers. There is normal, elevated, High Blood Pressure/Hypertension Stage 1, High Blood Pressure/Hypertension Stage 2, and High Blood Pressure/Hypertension Stage 3.

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There are a lot of things that are proven to lower blood pressure. For some people the things that can lower blood pressure are really difficult to do. I know people in high stress jobs or in very stressful situations, might have a difficult time alleviating that stress. It is not as if people can just quit their jobs or completely change their living/life situation. So if life stress is something in your life that you can’t change then perhaps there are things you can do to combat it. Like exercising, going for walks, being outside, having a pet, visiting with friends, doing yoga . . . .doing things that can counter act the stress. Then there are things like losing weight, not everyone with high blood pressure is overweight but many are and if we were able to lose just five pounds sometimes that can help. Also, a change in diet. If there is switch from over processed/fast foods to fresh fruits and vegetables and home cooked meals that can help. Sometimes it can be a domino affect . . . . if someone decides to take up walking and getting outside to help combat the stress they might just lose some fat because of that. And/or a change in the diet might just help the fat come off.

Since the belief is that high blood pressure could cause heart disease and/or a stroke, it seems like along with that the belief is that lower it if it is high can help prevent that.  And who doesn’t want that?

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

More On Ylang Ylang

Posted by terrepruitt on May 6, 2014

I was looking at my collection of essential oils and I found it interesting.  The ones I use the most are peppermint, lavender, and eucalyptus.  The ones I use the least are Ylang Ylang, Bergamot, and Frankincese.  They are also the three that I only have one bottle of.  I bought a set that contained peppermint, lavender, and eucalyptus.  I used it and bought another set.  I used those three out of the set and bought another set.  At least I THOUGHT I bought a set, but I must have duplicated my order and ended up with two sets.  Which is fine because of the three I use all the time.  Plus I have used them in my sugar scrub so that uses them up more quickly.  But I was interested in learning more about the three I don’t use often.  Also I happen to see some information on Ylang Ylang.  So I decided to do more research and report about it.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Zumba, PiYo, Gentle YogaI find it most interesting that the bottle of the brand I purchased states ” . . . Ylang-ylang Essential Oil is best suited for use in the perfumery and skincare industries.”  I know that when you mix scents with other scents you can come up with something delicious, but . . . seriously???  Have you ever smelled Ylang Ylang?  It is an odd scent.  I can’t really describe it.  The words that came to mind made it sound good , but I wouldn’t really call it a good smell.  It REMINDS me of smoke flavor.  I know that is odd to assign a scent a flavor, but that is what I think of.  I have not tasted it.  I am not that brave.  In addition to smoke flavor I think of a wet barrel.  Not wet wood, but a wet barrel that might be a bit moldy.  So odd, that is what it smells like to me a smokey wet moldy barrel . . . yet it is used in the perfume industry.  And I even used it in the sugar scrub.

The bottle also states:  ” Ylang-ylang Essential Oil can assist with problems such as high blood pressure, rapid breathing, nervous conditions, as well as impotence and frigidity.”  I can see why it might help with rapid breathing because when you smell it you stop breathing to keep the scent out.  Ok, it is not really THAT bad, but I also think I am used to it.

A few different doTERRA sources have information stating it can help with “Anxiety, Arrythmia, High Blood Pressure, Lack of Libido for Men and Women, Restlessness.”  And “helps balance hormones, promotes healthy skin and hair, and lifts mood while having a calming effect.”

Another company’s website states: ” . . . . it may help with releasing feelings of anger, tension, and nervous irritability.”

🙂  Which could be a result of correcting the “lack of Libido”.

I had included it in the scrub to help relieve stress.

Aroma Web says: “Ylang Ylang Oil is a rather interesting essential oil as its distillation varies a bit from most other oils, and this can affect the composition and aroma of the oil.”   Perhaps I need to smell a different version.

Summary of benefits:

Helps with:
high blood pressure
rapid breathing
nervous conditions
impotence and frigidity
anxiety
arrhythmia
lack of libido for men and women
restlessness
balance hormones
releasing feelings of anger, tension, and nervous irritability

Also promotes healthy skin and hair and lifts mood while having a calming effect

Of course, these are claims and I would recommend visiting a medical professional to make certain there is not a serious medical condition causing any of the above symptoms.  I also would like to remind readers that every one is different and every body is different and something that might help one person might not help another.  I personally know that I am healthy enough with no underlying medical condition, that I can use this oil for these symptoms if need be.  I think it could help release feelings of anger, tension, and nervous irritability if I have them.

If you use essential oils, do you use Ylang Ylang?  What do you use it for?  How do you use it?  Do you like the smell?  How would you describe it (the smell)?

Posted in Essential Oils | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

RDA Is Not For Everyone

Posted by terrepruitt on September 22, 2011

The Recommended Dietary Allowance or RDA is part of old guidelines that were first brought about by concern for our country.  The government wanted to make certain that military personnel were receiving the nutrients they needed to remain healthy.  The standards would be used for more than just the military, but the military was the initial thought.  Over the years the RDA has been modified and revised.  The modifications and revisions can be results of new scientific information or as new foods become available.  Eventually the recommend dietary allowance became part of the RDI, Recommended Daily Intake, which has four separate values to consider.  This post is just a quick reminder of the RDA.

The RDA is actually for healthy people . . . .if you are the one of the “one in three” Americans that have high blood pressure, or the one of the “one in three” Americans that have high cholesterol, or one in the large percentage of Americans that doesn’t exercise regularly and/or eat a diet of fast food and/or have a high stress job and/or are overweight/obese/morbidly obese then these guidelines are not necessarily for you.  The recommended dietary allowance is for healthy people.  The estimated Daily Values that are disclosed on nutrition labels are for healthy people and the people eating a 2000 calorie a day diet.

As you can see the D in RDA stands for dietary, not daily, because we don’t need to eat each recommended amount daily.  But I didn’t see the information that explained how that is supposed to average out.  But even so, the amounts are based on averages and people who are healthy so it is kind of no wonder that Americans as a whole are not getting healthier.  If what we have to follow doesn’t even apply to 1 in three of us.  The recommendations really should be taken as very loose guidelines.  If you have high blood pressure and/or high cholesterol and you are on medication that brings you back into the normal ranges, then it could be that the RDA might work for you.  But it could also be that if you weren’t concerned with the RDA (which remember is meant for healthy people) and you actually ate to be healthy then it could be that a proper diet could make the medication no longer needed.

A great example to point out proof of this is diabetes.  You probably know someone who has it.  You know they don’t follow the RDA.  If they are concerned with controlling it they have a very different diet to follow.  You might even know someone who HAD diabetes and they were able to control it and get off the medications with a change in their diet.  I have heard a lot of testimony of exactly that happening.

Guidelines for healthy people also applies to the 30 minutes of exercise a day.  That 30 minutes is to MAINTAIN health.  Again . . . if you are unhealthy and want to improve your health exercising just 30 minutes a day might not do it.  More than likely you’re going to need more.

So this is just to help you remember that the dietary guidelines are just there to advise or guide on how one does not become deficient in a nutrient.  That is why they are really actually explaining how to stay healthy because they were created for healthy people.  And the recommended 30 minutes a day is to maintain health.  So for the people with health issues that actually want to use diet and exercise to improve their health they shouldn’t stick to the recommendations.  They are only guidelines and they do not apply to us all.  We all are individuals and we need to find out what works best for us.  There are doctors, nutritionist, personal trainers, dietitians, and a whole group of people who can help.  Don’t necessarily rely on the government recommendations to GET you healthy.  It is really up to you.

Posted in Misc | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Omega 3 – The Fat We Should Eat

Posted by terrepruitt on September 1, 2011

I have mentioned Omega 3 before, but I haven’t said a lot about it.  I thought sharing a few things about it would be nice.  Omega 3 is an essential fatty acid required by the body.  “Essential” means that our body must have it but can’t make it so we need to obtain the nutrient from our diet.  Since our cell membranes are made up of fatty acids it makes sense that our body needs fatty acids to function properly.  The key is making sure our bodies have the right kind of fat.  Omega 3 contains three fatty acids, a-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and is considered a polyunsaturated fat.  Polyunsaturated fat, unlike saturated fat, does not harden at room temperature.  Wanting a fat that makes up cell membranes that does not harden is another thing that makes sense, right?  Nutrients and waste have an easier time passing in and out of a cell membrane with a liquid consistency than one that is solid.

Research has been done in regards to Omega 3 on diseases and ailments with varied results.  Studies continue to reveal Omega 3 helps reduce heart disease risk factors such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure.  Omega 3 helps reduce inflammation.  We know chronic inflammation is not good because it is linked with or even thought to be the cause of many diseases.   Omega 3 could help with autoimmune diseases of which inflammation is present such as asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, and diabetes.   With many diseases there is often multiple issues so it makes sense that if something helps with one thing it might help with another if it is a symptom or a result of a disease.  For instance, many people with diabetes have high cholesterol so, if Omega 3 helps lower the LDL and raise the HDL, that would be of assistance to someone with diabetes.  Science is continuing to discover things about Omega 3 and how each fatty acid has different effects on the body.

Omega 3 is interesting in that one of the three ALA is actually not used by the body until it is converted to the other two.  Some foods contain ALA, some contain EPA, and others contain DHA or a combination of them.  So as always recommended it is good to eat a variety of foods.  Eating a variety of foods containing Omega 3 will help ensure you get what you need.  Some of the food Omega 3 can be found in is cold water fish, flax seed, walnuts, and what some are calling “Omega 3 eggs”.  At present there is not a Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for Omega 3, but the consensus is that Americans should be eating more.

According to a the World’s Healthiest Foods website:  “the National Institutes of Health recommended that people consume at least 2% of their total daily calories as omega-3 fats.”

You might have heard the claim that Canola Oil is a good source of Omega 3, but then you might have also heard the processing the rapeseed plant goes through and the way the oil is made actually burns off the Omega 3 and becomes transfat.  This is one of those things you might want to research and decide for yourself.  It is your health.

Other foods containing Omega 3: beans, olive oil, hemp seeds, kale, collard greens, spinach, soybeans, cloves, oregano, green beans — yay, not just fish!  I am not a fan of fish although, the Omega 3 in fish is hard to beat, so I probably should start eating it.

Like so many nutrients being discovered as being necessary almost everyday it seems as if the best way to get what the body needs is to eat a variety of foods.  The less we eat of over-processes and packaged foods the better.  Finding a balance is also important.  It just really sounds as if, from all the information I have read, Americans consume less Omega 3 than we should, so — to me — it sounds good to add more to my diet.  What about you?  Are there ways you can add more healthy foods that contain Omega 3 into your diet?

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Lower Salt Intake

Posted by terrepruitt on September 2, 2010

The recommended daily maximum sodium intake for Americans is 2300 to 2400 milligrams for healthy people, for people with high blood pressure and elderly people it is even less at 1500 milligrams.  Do you know how much the average American consumes per day?   A lot, more than twice the amount for a healthy person, at 5000 milligrams.  The body  needs 500 milligrams a day and we are getting about 10 times as much.

One teaspoon of salt contains 2325 milligrams of sodium.  So one teaspoon is about all we should be having per day.  It would be a lot easier if we were in complete control of the sodium we consumed and it was not added to our food.  A lot of food might not even taste salty to contain a high amount of sodium.  Most of the salt in the American diet comes from restaurant foods and processed, about 80 percent.  Foods high in sodium are the highly processed foods, canned foods, pickled foods, condiments, dressings, and sauces.

There is research predicting that more than 100,000 Ameican deaths a year could be prevented if Americans reduced their sodium intake.

It could be a matter of understanding the labeling terms, according to an article on the Mayo Clinic’s website, here is some help:

  • Sodium-free or salt-free. Each serving in this product contains less than 5 mg of sodium.
  • Very low sodium. Each serving contains 35 mg of sodium or less.
  • Low sodium. Each serving contains 140 mg of sodium or less.
  • Reduced or less sodium. The product contains at least 25 percent less sodium than the regular version.
  • Lite or light in sodium. The sodium content has been reduced by at least 50 percent from the regular version.
  • Unsalted or no salt added. No salt is added during processing of a food that normally contains salt. However, some foods with these labels may still be high in sodium.

I really love salt.  Even though I don’t eat a lot of processed foods, I do salt my food.  I am probably one of the “average Americans” that consumes sodium on the high end.  The information that I am seeing states that liking foods salty is an acquired taste so one can learn to like food less salty by just reducing the salt slowly.  I think I am going to do that.    What about you, do you eat the “average American” amount?  Is there a way you can reduce your sodium intake?

 

Posted in Food | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

A New Report On Obesity

Posted by terrepruitt on August 21, 2010

Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat has accumulated to the extent that it may have an adverse effect on health, leading to reduced life expectancy and/or increased health problems (according to Wiki).  The measurement of obesity is primarily BMI – Body Mass Index. The formula for determining BMI is divide a person’s weight by the height squared. This is just a guide as it does not always work well in determining excess body fat if the person is primarily muscle. Just like all of the information put out to the general public is a guide made to be easy and simple.

BMI Categories:

•  Underweight = <18.5
•  Normal weight = 18.5–24.9
•  Overweight = 25–29.9
•  Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater

A report recently published* revealed is America’s BMI is going up. Adult obesity rates increased in 28 states in the past year, and declined only in the District of Columbia (D.C.). Other information reported:

■  33 States have adult obesity rates above 25%
■  No state had an obesity rate above 20% in 1991
■  Colorado has the lowest rate of obesity at 19.1% of its population being obese
■  The number of adults who report they do not engage in any physical activity rose in 12 states in the past year
■  The number of states where adult obesity rates exceed 30 percent doubled in the past year, from four to eight —
Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee and West Virginia.
■  Ten of the 11 states with the highest rates of diabetes are in the South
■  Ten of the 11 states with the highest rates of hypertension are in the South
■  California’s percentage of obese is 24.4

One way to change these numbers is to eat better . . . I really believe that most of us could eat better . . . and move more. Most of us could move more too. Find something you love to do because odds are if you love it you will stick with it. This is not about looking good it is about reducing a condition that leads to a reduction in life expectancy and/or increased health problems. Feeling good is an added benefit.

Regardless of where you fall on this type of scale, what can you do to eat better? Share here. Tell me what you are going to do in order to improve your diet. What about movement? What type of movement do you love? What can you add to your day? Let me know.

*F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America’s Future 2010, a report from the Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF).

Posted in Just stuff | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

How I Found Nia

Posted by terrepruitt on May 15, 2010

People always ask me how I found Nia. Here is my story: I had just begun exercising. I had found Turbo Jam and I liked it. I did the DVDs in my living room before work. At the time I worked in San Jose not too from where I lived so I would get up early in the morning and do it before work. The women I worked with always told me that they loved to dance, but they couldn’t get their partners to dance with them. They also would tell me that they wished they could find a dance exercise.

I was also seeing a lot of people — at that time — that were my age or even younger that couldn’t walk up the stairs or sit on the floor and get up again. Plus there were some young people around me that were going on High Blood Pressure Meds and experiencing other health issues.

So I started looking online for an exercise that was dancey. I thought maybe I could find something that I could learn to teach others. I found trance dance, but from what I saw and what I read, it said that you closed your eyes and just danced. It didn’t sound like there was ANY rhyme or reason. I sounded as if you were in a trance and you danced. The information talked of having people watch so the people dancing didn’t run into or hit each other. So that didn’t sound like what I would be interested in.

Somehow I stumbled . . . . literally, I don’t know how, just clicking on this link and that link . . . .I found Nia. I checked out the main site and it sounded interesting. I found a class that wasn’t too far. I went. I liked it. I bought the book. I went to another class. Then months later, I found another class at a different time and I tried that. Then months later, I talked my friend into going with me one more time*.

In between the second and third class I was thinking about taking the training that would enable me to teach. But I wasn’t sure. Nia sounded a bit “woo-woo” to me. So I kept reading. I really focused on the fact that it is based on science. It is based on research. The movements are movements that our bodies were designed to do. The movements tie into the way it is taught. Some of the words that are used might give the impression that it is really “woo-woo”, but it is not. There are also some elements of Nia that are like ancient practices. I kept thinking that some of these practices have been around for hundreds of years and they really have a basis in health and wellness. It was all very intriguing.

*My fourth class I attended was my “deciding” class. I went to make a final decision. I decided to do it. I decided to get sign up for the intensive that would allow me to teach. It took me so long to decide I was signing up within 30 days of the training.

I had NO idea what the training would entail. And that my friends is what another post is made of.

Nia. It is awesome. It IS an exercise. It IS a cardio workout. But I will not lie to you to try to keep you interested, it IS so much more. For some reason I cannot (nor can anyone else I talk to) put my finger on, it makes you happy. Try it and see for yourself. Try MY classes, or try someone else’s. Get a DVD, I don’t care. Just try it and then let me know what you think.

Posted in Nia | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

30 Minutes Per Day

Posted by terrepruitt on May 19, 2009

At one point there was information released that stated one could be active for 30 minutes a day, five days a week and the result would be improved health.  I somehow was under a different impression, and I think my impression is better for overall health.

Dance Exercise, Nia San Jose, Nia Campbell, San Jose Nia, Campbell Nia, San Jose Dance Workout, Campbell Dance WorkoutI thought that the information had said that the 30 minutes needed to be EVERY DAY and that it was for healthy people to maintain health.  So my conclusion was that if one wanted to actually improve one’s health one needed to be doing a workout OVER and above the recommended 30 minutes of activity a day five days a week.

Maybe I was seeing into the future of recommendations.  Seems like the people that make these recommendations are now saying that more activity IS needed.

What it really boils down to is that everyone is different.  Recommendations that are published are broad, everyone has different goals.  I would think that some people could improve their health in 30 minutes a day five days a week, but there are a lot more people that need more, just to get healthy.  It is estimated that 1 in 3 adults has high blood pressure and they don’t even know it.  High blood pressure is not healthy and it possible to lower it with exercise, but it might take more than 30 minutes a day.

I recommend 30 minutes of activity every day.  The 30 minutes can be anything . . . .cleaning house, walking the dog, gardening, shopping, almost anything where you are moving your body and active.  THEN in addition to that 30 minutes every day, there should be an exercise routine.  Everyone is different.  Everyone has different goals.  Everyone has different likes and dislikes.  If you are trying to get healthy, I would suggest you examine your goals, then look at the vast amount of exercise options out there and try some.**

There is so much out there it is amazing.  There is Yoga, there is Zumba, there is Pilates, there is Nia, there is Cycling, there is Weight Training, oh, the list goes on.  Try something.  San Jose, Los Gatos, Cupertino, and San Ramon and all cities around have plenty of gyms, clubs, yoga studios, dance studios, etc., and most of them have a vararity of things to try.

Don’t think that the old recommendation of 30 minutes per day will give you the results you want, try more, get out there .. . . move!

**before starting any exercise program you should clear it with your doctor.

Posted in Exercise and Working Out | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »