Our UK team offer tips on finding balance during your daily grind
Download the app
Fitness memberships, workout classes, wellness services, beauty appointments and more.
Calories. Or what we like to call, one of the most misunderstood components of healthy living. We used to obsess over them. Counting and tracking intake to then go “burn” them off. As if they were magical little balls that disappear when we workout.
To be honest, learning to stop the counting was scary. We were surrendering a sense of control that we felt when knowing, measurably, the exact amount that came in, and the exact amount that went out. But, that apprehension and the subsequent shift was life-changing.
To feel your best, lose weight, or maintain your health goals, you do not have to be committed to the calculator. It’s more about understanding how your body digests and functions optimally, and less about looking to control and manipulate our bodies through tracking caloric intake.
Here are three reasons why you don’t need to count calories to lose weight:
A hundred calories in a banana vs. a hundred-calorie snack pack are not the same. When we focus on calories, rather than value, we are shorting ourselves nutrition. When we short ourselves nutrition, we end up, well, hungry. Seems counter-productive, no?
Some calories are important to include for promoting digestion, upping energy, and delivering nutrients throughout our body. We need some help with the absorption of what we are eating. These factors are way more important than a bolded number on a packet (hello marketing strategy!)
Our bodies are amazing—they were designed to build humans. When we fuel up with things that are hard to process and digest, it taxes our body. When we focus on calories, we risk being under-nourished and overfed. Cutting calories is not the goal, it’s omitting the calories that deplete your body and increasing the ones that nourish your body.
We get it. These tips break “norms,” but like we always say, if nothing changes, nothing changes. Not only has ditching calorie counting changed our own lives, but it’s also changed hundreds of others when they made their MOVE.
Want more healthy tips? Check out Move with Mooch and Mel, and follow them at @move.withmm on Instagram!
Acupuncture is extremely beneficial for various ailments ranging from digestion to carpal tunnel, but the level of effectiveness varies from person-to-person. I’ve had Sciatica patients spend months combating their back and leg pain, and others hop off the table in two hours, never needing a follow-up appointment. Some rotator cuffs take six weeks; others take two years.
Why is this?
While your body's response to acupuncture depends on the complaint or injury, it also depends on your overall health, and how well you take care of the injured site between sessions. If we eat junk food all the time, are inactive, don’t sleep well, or overwork ourselves, then injury is imminent, and recovery is going to be hard. Equally, if we ignore an injury or don't care for it, then we will likely stay injured for longer.
So, let’s break down what’s best for you when it comes to acupuncture:
“How often should you get acupuncture with specific ailments?”
This is different for everyone, but here are some general guidelines.
More is better.
Acupuncture has cumulative effects, so while most feel relief after one session, it likely will not have resolved the issue. Multiple follow up sessions are needed, and for your own comfort, it’s recommended that you use sessions before the effects have completely worn off each time.
Every time you receive a session, your relief should be more significant, and the effects should last longer—bringing the injury closer to resolution. With this in mind; the worse the injury, the more frequent you’ll want to receive acupuncture. Several times a week is standard, that way you will get out of discomfort faster, and you’ll need fewer sessions overall.
Understanding acute versus chronic ailments.
Some acute symptoms like nausea, dizziness, bleeding, swelling, or anxiety will clear up on the spot. However, for recent injuries pertaining to tissues, like a strained muscle, you can use three acupuncture sessions in one week with great effect. For example, with strained lower back muscles, you will feel less pain in one session, a significant reduction in inflammation and symptoms within three sessions. An ankle sprain is a little more serious and may take two or three weeks, but the general idea is the same.
With stubborn pain, or chronic issues like sciatica, skin rashes, nerve pain, hormone irregularities, it can take a bunch of sessions to see lingering results. Often there will be relief right after each session, but the symptoms return quickly (albeit with a little less vengeance). This just means the results are happening in smaller increments. For this reason, your practitioner will tell you to come in over three times a week for two or three weeks so you’ll get more relief faster, but you can space the sessions out as you begin to feel better.
“What can I do to make my acupuncture benefits bigger?”
As mentioned, how you care for yourself between sessions makes a big difference. Here’s a few pro tips.
Your practitioner will give you specific directions they want you to follow for your ailment, but generally, after an acupuncture visit, it is wise to drink a lot of water and rest.
Here’s the obvious thing we don’t often consider. If you get instant relief for your pulled hamstring, but then you go running the next day, it’s going to take forever to heal! That injured body part needs to be pampered and catered to. Your acupuncturist will give you food, supplement, lifestyle, and movement suggestions to use between sessions– use them all.
I’ve seen countless patients walk in with frozen shoulder, spend 90 minutes in the chair with various points and stimulation techniques, and then leave swinging their arm painlessly with 50% more range of motion. If they eat well, do their physical therapy, and are kind to their shoulders, the effects will last. Then, next time, we can add another 50% on to their range of motionBut, if they paint a house or swing a baseball, then I see them go right back to square one overnight. How we take care of ourselves between sessions really matters.
You will want to note any changes; no matter how small or irrelevant they seem. Your practitioner is armed with many protocols and techniques. They will always start with the combo that they’ve seen work best for your complaint, from there they will work backward or tweak it slightly based on the information you give them. Make sure to tell them every detail, even if it seems unrelated.
One lady, with unrelenting pain, finally revealed a game-changing nugget to me while nonchalantly laughing about her need to wear neck scarves everywhere. I found out she had been experiencing chills and had a significant aversion to wind during the summer. This “irrelevant” snippet made me radically change the protocol, and she was pain-free and healing rapidly within four sessions.
So, there you have it. How acupuncture benefits various body parts depends on the area concerned, but also on how we treat our bodies before, during, and after injury.