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Are You Under a lot of Stress

Mental VacationAre You Under a lot of Stress?

Visualizing a stress-free place and other relaxation techniques are quick and easy ways to help your whole body calm down and give you just the boost you need to get on with your day.

Open a book. Reading is a great escape that can transport you to remote destinations and faraway lands. Getting lost in a good book is a perfect way to forget, then refocus, your own thoughts.

Visualize yourself relaxing. Close your eyes and imagine a place that relaxes you — such as the warm sun on your skin and the sound of the ocean, a big country field sprinkled with flowers, or a trickling stream. If you can’t get away to your favorite spot, the next best thing is to imagine being there.

Pull out your favorite pictures. Photo albums full of fun pictures can bring back a flood of good memories and feelings. Spend a few quiet moments reminiscing about what made those memories so special or happy. You’ll find that those feelings can quickly return, to brighten your day.

Look out the window. During a break, take time to stare out the window. Finding anything to take your mind off of your work will give you a fresh set of eyes when you return to it. It’s also fun to people watch. People will do the funniest things when they think no one is watching.

Listen to a relaxation CD. Invest in a couple of these CDs for a short daily escape. You may like to hear chirping birds, rolling waves, or gentle rain — whatever your choice, closing your eyes and listening to these soothing sounds while doing some deep breathing can help you relax and de-stress.

Take a walk. Exercise is a great way to relieve stress because it’s a great escape for your mind. Even if you’re limited to a walk to the water cooler, stretching your legs will boost blood flow to your extremities and brain.

Treat yourself to a 5-, 10-, or 20-minute mental vacation each day. You will find you can train your body to relax and reduce stress.  It’s amazing how much better you feel after taking just a few luxurious moments all to yourself.


Exercise While Seated

Seated excerciseExercise While Seated

It has been said that “sitting is the new smoking”. Sitting can be addictive and harmful with prolonged exposure. Who knew?! Unfortunately, many of us are confined to a chair for our work, educational pursuits, or current health state. Luckily, we can break the mold with these chair friendly exercises. Take the challenge and see if you can complete three repetitions of each exercise within 15 minutes.

Rules to stay safe. While performing these exercises, maintain good posture. Keep your back straight; do not curve or slump your back. Make sure your movements are controlled and slow. Avoid quick, jerking movements. Do not bounce. Do not hold your breath during these exercises.

Knee straightening. Raise your foot to fully straighten your knee out in front of you. Hold for a count of five. Lower your foot to the floor. Repeat on other side.

Hip bending. Lift one knee up toward the ceiling. As you lower this knee, raise your other knee. Alternate each leg as if you were marching in place (while sitting.)

Overhead reaching. Raise one arm straight over your head, with your palm facing away from you. Keep your elbow straight. Slowly lower your arm to your side. Repeat with other arm.

Shoulder touching. Sit with your arms at your sides and your palms facing up. Bend your elbows until your hands are touching your shoulders. Lower your hands to your sides.

Single arm lifts. Sit with your arms at your sides, fingers pointing toward the floor. Raise one arm out to your side, keeping your elbow straight and your palm facing down. Slowly lower your arm to your side. Repeat with your other arm.

Shoulder shrugs. Keeping your back straight, lift your shoulders up and forward toward your ears. Release your shoulders down and back in a smooth circular motion.

Arm circles. Sit with your arms at your sides, fingers pointing toward the floor. Raise both arms out from your sides (about 1 or 2 feet from your body). Keeping your elbows straight and your palms facing toward you, rotate your arms in small circles.

Single shoulder circles. Bending one elbow, put your fingertips on your shoulder. Rotate your shoulder and elbow clockwise, then counter clockwise. Repeat with each arm.


Get fit right in your seat. Now you have no more excuses!


Staying in Control

Eating OutStaying in Control

Larger than life platters and portions have become the norm for dining out. When a restaurant dishes up your favorite meal, it can be up to three times more than you would serve yourself, when eating at home. Because it can take up to 20 minutes for our stomach to tell our brain that it’s full, a plate full of food can easily become an overeating disaster.

If main portions at a restaurant are larger than you want, Dr. Anthony Davis, a physician at Bingham Memorial Hospital, suggests these simple strategies:

Order an appetizer-sized portion or a side dish instead of an entrée. “Enjoy your favorite food. Simply order less of it to remove the temptation to overeat,” says Dr. Davis.

Share a main dish with a friend. Add a side salad to your order for some fresh vegetables and you’ll be surprised how filling eating half of a main dish can be.

When your food is delivered, set aside or pack half to go immediately. “Ask for a to-go box when ordering your meal,” suggests Dr. Davis. “Several restaurants will box half of your meal up, before bringing you your plate, if you just ask.”

Resign from the “clean your plate club” – when you’ve eaten enough, leave the rest. Remember, the pressure to finish the last few bites is self-imposed. If you have remorse over uneaten food, ask for a to-go box. Decide then to eat your leftovers tomorrow for lunch, that way you won’t find yourself finishing it off later that night.

If you have questions about your eating habits, or want more techniques for eating out, give Dr. Davis of Bingham Memorial Hospital a call at 782-3993.


Zesty Black Bean Burgers

101705-SM-pr Gardner P3Zesty Black Bean Burgers

The vitamin folate is particularly important during pregnancy and infancy, as it helps produce and maintain new cells. When taken before and during pregnancy, it can prevent certain birth defects.

It’s essential to making DNA and plays a role in preventing DNA changes that may cause cancer. Plus, everyone needs folate to make red blood cells and prevent anemia. Black beans are one excellent source of folate. These folate-rich burgers will satisfy your appetite and may improve your health, too!

1 garlic clove, minced
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 c. chopped mushrooms
1 jalapeño chili, cored, minced
1 small green bell pepper, chopped
11/2 c. cooked black beans, well drained
1/3 c. quick-cooking oats
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. pepper
3 Tbsp. low-fat mayonnaise, divided
2 medium tomatoes, thinly sliced
1 c. torn Romaine lettuce
4 split whole-wheat buns
2 Tbsp. mustard
1 tsp. honey
Dash chipotle chili powder

Nutrition information per serving:
270 calories; 5 grams total fat; 12 grams protein; 47.5 grams carbohydrates; 540 milligrams sodium; and 9.5 grams dietary fiber.

1.    Spray large nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Add garlic, onion, mushrooms, chili and
bell pepper; cook over medium heat 7 minutes, or until tender. Place vegetables in blender. Add beans, oats, salt, oregano, cumin, pepper and 1 Tbsp. mayonnaise. Coarsely purée. Shape into 4 patties. Refrigerate on greased, wax-paper-covered plate 1 hour.
2.    Spray the skillet with cooking spray. Ease in patties. Cook over medium heat 3 to 6 minutes per side, depending on thickness, or until browned; handle gently.
3.    Arrange 1/4 of tomato slices and lettuce on each bun. Add patties. Combine remaining mayonnaise, mustard, honey and chili powder. Top each patty with 1/4 of sauce. Add tops of buns.
Makes 4 servings.
Note: If desired, use vegan mayonnaise.


Diabetic Dos and Don’ts

101706-SM-pr Blackner DiabetesDiabetic Dos and Don’ts: How to successfully manage your diabetes

A diagnosis of diabetes can change your life. Whether you’ve already been diagnosed, or you’re concerned about preventing the disease, the following Dos and Don’ts from Dr. Todd Blackner of the Physicians and Surgeons Clinic of Shelley will help you make smart choices, when it comes to diabetes.

Do – Check your blood glucose levels regularly. Staying within your goal blood glucose range will ultimately prolong your life.

Don’t – Assume because food is sugar free, that it is okay to eat. Sugar free often means that the manufacturer has found some other way to sweeten the product without using refined sugar.

Do – Have your eyes checked annually. This should include a dilated eye exam to inspect for broken blood vessels. The eyes tend to be the first to show signs of poorly managed diabetic care.

Don’t – Ignore warning signs of diabetes – like irritability, rapid weight loss, or incessant thirst.

Do – Exercise regularly. Regular exercise will help metabolism and efficacy of naturally produced or injected insulin.

Don’t – Wait for an actual diabetes diagnosis to make changes to your lifestyle. There are a lot of people who consider themselves “pre-diabetic”. Choosing now to live a healthy lifestyle just might reverse the “pre” diagnosis.

Do – Schedule regular visits with your physician. Physicians have great tracking tools that can help adjust diet, exercise, and medication to keep you healthy.

If you have a history of diabetes in your family, or have questions about your diabetes care, schedule an appointment with Dr. Todd Blackner by calling his office at 357-3960.

Additionally, Dr. Blackner is now offering free get acquainted visits to new patients. To schedule your free get acquainted visit at the Physicians and Surgeons clinic of Shelley with Dr. Blackner, call 357-3960.


Folic Acid & Pregnancy: What‘s the big deal?

101703-SM-fam Gardner P2What’s the Big Deal About Folic Acid?

Folic acid, also called folate, is an important nutrient for women who might become pregnant. By eating 400 micrograms of folic acid daily both before and early in the pregnancy, a woman can help her baby’s spine, skull and brain develop correctly.

Now, a new study shows that long-term folic acid intake may protect a woman’s entire pregnancy. An international group of researchers found that women who took a folate supplement for a year or more before becoming pregnant reduced their risk of a moderately premature birth (between 28 and 32 weeks) by 50 percent. They reduced their risk of very premature birth (20 to 28 weeks) by 70 percent.

A normal pregnancy is 40 weeks long. The most premature babies who have survived have been born at 23 weeks or after. And babies born after 32 weeks have a much better chance to survive and live healthy lives.

“The best way to be sure you get enough folic acid is to take a supplement,” says Ricky Gardner, M.D., a physician at Bingham Memorial Hospital. “Many ‘women’s formula’ multivitamins also include a full day’s recommended amount of this important building block.”

If you have questions about folic acid in your diet or any other prenatal concerns, contact Dr. Ricky Gardner at Bingham Memorial Hospital, by calling 785-3834.

Dr. Gardner is currently offering a free get acquainted visit for expecting mothers (or those planning to become pregnant in the near future). For more information about Dr. Gardner, or to schedule your free get acquainted visit, call his office at 785-3834


Healthy Idaho Potatoes

Health Benefits of Potatoes 1 – Potatoes for High Blood Pressure
A study has suggested that consuming potatoes each day can lower high blood pressure almost the same as oats without resulting in an increase in weight.

Researchers have identified potatoes as being the lowest cost source of dietary potassium, a nutrient lacking in the American diet, and important for reducing the risk of high blood pressure.

Health Benefits of Potatoes 2 – Potatoes for Cancer
Research has revealed that lectins like those present in potatoes inhibit cancer cell growth.

Health Benefits of Potatoes 3 – Potatoes for Weight Loss
A study has demonstrated that people can incorporate potatoes into their diet and still lose weight. Researchers studied 86 overweight women and men over twelve weeks to determine how a reduced calorie diet with the addition of potatoes affected weight loss. The individuals were randomly allocated to 3 groups and each one had a diet that included 5 to 7 helpings of potatoes each week. The outcomes showed that all 3 groups lost weight.


 The Health Benefits of Potatoes

Via http://www.aboutnutritionfacts.com/health-benefits-of-potatoes.html


New Internal Medicine Residency

BIMR photo

Bingham Memorial Hospital & Idaho Physician’s Clinic Announces New Bingham Internal Medicine Residency

The Association of American Medical Colleges projects that by 2020 the United States will face a shortage of more than 91,500 physicians to accommodate the growing health care needs of our nation. This potential national crisis is approaching at an alarming rate.

Medical schools across the country have increased student enrollments to help combat this impending crisis. An important part of the equation is the need to increase the number of medical residency slots available.

Bingham Memorial Hospital and the Idaho Physicians Clinic are pleased to announce that it has been granted approval by the American Osteopathic Association to commence the Bingham Internal Medicine Residency program.

Beginning July 2014, the Bingham Internal Medicine Residency program will receive its first four residents. By 2017 the residency program anticipates 12 filled positions. Residents will complete their required core curriculum with rotations among several Bingham Memorial Hospital doctors. Additionally, patient acute care experiences not available at Bingham Memorial will be offered through a partnership with Davis Hospital and Medical Center in Layton, Utah.

More than 60 percent of resident physicians stay in the area where they do their residency. “There are so many students that leave our area to go to medical school throughout the country,” explains Shane Robinson, Administrative Director of Graduate Medical Education at Bingham Memorial Hospital. “Residents want the opportunity to come back to their own community to learn and raise their families.”

The new internal medicine residency program will allow Bingham Memorial to bring the best resident physicians to our area and hopefully make them a permanent part of the Southeast Idaho community. For more information regarding the Bingham Internal Medicine Residency program, please visit www.BinghamIMR.org.


Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

101704-SM-pr Blackner colon cancer

In hopes to spread the word, in 2000 President Bill Clinton designated March as national Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Colon cancer is cancer that starts in the colon or rectum. It develops in the digestive tract as polyps, and without treatment can turn into cancer.

According to the Colon Cancer Alliance, colon cancer affects men and women of all racial and ethnic groups. It is the third most common cancer in the United States, behind only lung and prostate cancers in men and lung and breast cancers in women, and the second leading cause of cancer death.

According to Todd Blackner, M.D., a family medicine physician at the Physicians and Surgeons Clinic of Shelley, here are six things you need to know about colon cancer:

  1. If you are 50 or over, get screened. Colon cancer predominately affects individuals over the age of 50. As many as 80% of deaths from colon cancer could be prevented with regular screenings.
  2. It runs in the family. If close relatives have a history of colon cancer, your risk of developing it is even greater.
  3. Get your exercise. Studies have shown that daily physical activity can decrease colon cancer risk by as much as 50 percent.
  4. As a survivor of colon cancer, you’re at a higher risk.  A person who has already had colon cancer may develop colon cancer a second time.
  5. Don’t smoke! A person who smokes cigarettes may be at increased risk of developing polyps and colon cancer.
  6. Screening is the key to prevention. Treatment has a very high success rate when colon cancer is detected early. Pre-cancerous polyps can easily be removed before they become life threatening. Screenings should be planned for every 5 years for women and every 10 years for men after turning 50.

The most common method of screening for colon cancer is the colonoscopy. Your physician uses a thin, flexible tube called a colonoscope to look at the inner lining of your large intestine, also known as your colon and rectum. A colonoscopy helps find ulcers, colon polyps, tumors, and areas of inflammation or bleeding.

 If you have a history of colon cancer in your family, or are over the age of 50, call Dr. Blackner’s office at 357-3960.  Dr. Blackner will be happy to address your questions regarding screenings and colon cancer.

Additionally, Dr. Blackner is now offering free get acquainted visits to new patients. To schedule your free get acquainted visit at the Physicians and Surgeons clinic of Shelley with Dr. Blackner, call 357-3960.


Cold & Flu is in the Air

101701-SM-fam Blackner cold-fluAvoid the Cold and Flu This Spring with 3 W’s

The freezing temperatures might be subsiding, but cold and flu season is still in full swing. Protect yourself from the last vicious strands of bacteria that are trying to sedate you this season.

Here are 3 tips from Todd Blackner, M.D., a physician at the Physicians and Surgeons Clinic of Shelley, to help you stay healthy this spring.

  • Wash your hands – you’ve heard this before, but are you doing it correctly? 20 seconds minimum of rapid rubbing will help you eliminate those sickly germs. Not wearing a watch? That’s okay, just sing Happy Birthday twice to pass the time requirement.
  • Work out – Get your sweat on to keep those germs out. Working out regularly helps your immune system stay in tip-top shape. This ensures that when germs come knocking, your body will be ready to knock them out.
  • Wait patiently - When sick friends and family have hidden themselves away, let them lie low! Rushing them back to social interaction not only increases your risk for picking up the contamination, but slowing down their healing process.

If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, give Dr. Todd Blackner of the Physicians and Surgeons Clinic of Shelley a call at 357-3960.

Dr. Blackner is currently offering free get acquainted visits to first time patients at his Shelley office. To schedu
le your free get acquainted visit, call him at 357-3960.

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