Monday, 26 November 2018 20:55

Best of 2018 Contest Winners

 

 

 

After tens of thousands of votes, you have chosen this year's best for fitness, beauty, health, fun, and food!

On Oct. 25, Best Self Atlanta hosted a celebratory photo shoot and party to honor our "Best of 2018" contest winners. Honorees gathered to mingle and enjoy fantastic food from Under the Cork Tree.

While there, attendees received hair and makeup by The Green Room Agency before being photographed by Dan Sawyer of Sawyer Photography.

 

 

 

 

Best Ballroom Dance Studio
International Dance Studios
IntDanceStudios.com

Best Bookstore
Phoenix & Dragon
PhoenixAndDragon.com

Best Charity Ball/Gala
Smiley for Kylie
SmileyForKylie.org

Best Charity Race
Georgia 2-Day Walk
for Breast Cancer
ItsTheJourney.org

Best Comedy Club
The Basement Theatre
TheBasementTheatre.com

Best Community Garden
Oakhurst Community Garden
WyldeCenter.org/Oakhurst-Garden

Best Continuing Education Program for Adults
Kennesaw State University
Kennesaw.edu

Best Cooking Classes/School
The Cook’s Warehouse
CooksWarehouse.com

Best Dance Club
MJQ Concourse
Facebook.com/MJQConcourse

Best Doggy Daycare
Puppy Haven
PuppyHavenAtl.com

Best Gardening Classes
Taproot Hydroponics
TapHydro.com

Best Groomer
Swanky Paws Pet Spa
SwankyPaws.com

Best Hidden Gem
for Live Music
MadLife Stage & Studios
MadLifeStageAndStudios.com

Best Life Coach
New Perspectives for Life
NewPerspectivesForLife.com

Best Marriage Counseling/Therapy Practice
CURA Couples and Family Therapy Center of Atlanta
CuraForCouples.com

Best Museum
Waffle House Museum
WaffleHouse.com/
Waffle-House-Museum

Best Pet Rescue Organization
Angels Among Us Pet Rescue
AngelsRescue.org

Best Pet Trainer
Peach on a Leash
PeachOnALeash.com

Best Pet Walker/
Sitter Service
CutiePaws Pet Sitting
CutiePawsAtl.com

Best Staycation
The St. Regis Atlanta
Marriott.com

Best Team Building Event
Urban Escape Games
UrbanEscapeGames.com

LIFE ENRICHMENT

P 001Best New Give-Back Initiative
Fab Women Over 50 Flower Power Calendar
Adorned in blossoms, 12 of Atlanta's finest were photographed by Richie Arpino, of Richie Arpino Salon. In support of
breast cancer fighters, proceeds from each calendar purchase go to local treatment centers. RichieArpinoPhotography.com, 404.231.5092

 

 

P 002Best Pet Store
Hollywood Feed
Hollywood Feed offers a wide selection of natural, holistic, American-made pet food and premium products, and supports local rescues through regular pet adoption and community events. HollywoodFeed.com, 888.816.8691

 

 

ƒP 003Best Financial Planning/Services
Faye Sykes, Scarlet Oak Financial Services
Leading an award-winning, financial planning team, Faye brings 14 years of experience as a financial and retirement planner, wealth advisor and business benefit consultant to clients. Her team provides group, one-on-one, and digital education options. ScarletOaksFS.com 800.871.1219

 

 

P 004Best Animal Clinic„
Baranik Animal Care
A licensed and experienced veterinarian, Dr. Baranik blends owner education with the latest vet technologies and compassionate patient care to provide an excellent pet experience, including routine visits, boarding and grooming, emergency and urgent care and more. BaranikAnimalCare.com 678.869.5469

 

 

ƒP 005Best Active Senior
Living Community Village Park Senior Living
Staying active and engaged as you age is easy and enjoyable through a wide range of activities, social events, health and wellness programs, restaurant-style dining and more—everything needed to live a full, vibrant, and well-balanced life. VillageParkSeniorLiving.com 678.677.8900

 

 

 

 

 

Best Barre Studio
Barre3-East Cobb
Barre3.com

Best Boot Camp
BodyJump Fitness
BodyJumpFit.com

Best Boxing Workout Facility
Fitbox Training Perimeter
FitboxTraining.com

Best CrossFit Gym
CrossFit Vesuvio
AtlantaSC.com

Best Cycling Shop
Outback Bikes
Outback-Bikes.com

Best Dance Fitness Facility
Dance 101
Dance101.org

Best Fitness Apparel Store
Lululemon Athletica
Shop.Lululemon.com

Best Fitness Equipment Store
Play It Again Sports
PlayItAgainSports.com

Best Golf Instruction
Jon Veldhuis, Capital City Club
CapitalCityClub.org

Best Gym
SculptHouse
SculptHouse.com

Best Indoor Cycling Studio
TURN Studio
TurnStudio.com

Best Kid Fitness Facility
Kinetic Sports Elite
KineticSportsElite.com

Best Martial Arts Training
Team Octopus Fitness
MMAAtl.com

Best Outdoor Sports Instruction
REI Co-op
REI.com

Best Rec Sports League
Atlanta Flying Disc Club
AFDC.com

Best Running/Walking Gear Store
Big Peach Running Co.
BigPeachRunningCo.com

Best Senior Fitness Facility
Family Life Center,
Second-Ponce de Leon Baptist Church
SPDL.org/FLC

Best Tennis Facility
Life Time Fitness
LifeTime.Life

Best Water Sports Instruction
20,000 Leagues Scuba and Aquatics
20000LeaguesScuba.com

FITNESS/WEIGHT LOSS

‚P 006Best Athletic Club
Windy Hill Athletic Club
Whether you’re looking for industry-leading tennis instruction, innovative group fitness classes, restorative spa services, exceptional social activities, a family-friendly atmosphere, or even a delicious meal, you’ll find it at Windy Hill’s 11-acre fitness oasis.
WindyHillClub.com, 770.953.1100

 

 

P 007Best Outdoor Gear Store„
Mountain High Outfitters
Mountain High Outfitters is an active outdoor lifestyle brand offering apparel, footwear, gear and accessories. The staff there can outfit you for everyday life or your next adventure. Visit the store’s Buckhead, Ponce City Market or new Alpharetta City Center location. Get out. Get active. Be inspired. Live your passion. MountainHighOutfitters.com

 

 

P 008Best HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) Facility
FIT9
Use science and superior fitness to reach a new personal best with an expertly balanced, comprehensive workout that pushes your limits. Attendees can achieve maximum results through enthusiastic empowerment and community motivation.
Fit9Atl.com, 404.310.2965

 

 

ƒP 009Best Personal Trainer
Pamela Molinari, Atlanta Fitness Diva
Pamela uses her 30 years of fitness knowledge and extensive research on the science of a woman’s body to help every female reach their fitness goals. Her methods include personalized workouts, and boot camps using strength training and cardio intervals. AtlantaFitnessDiva.com, 404.531.5000

 

 

ƒP 010Best New Boutique Fitness
Studio Bungee
This unique workout delivers a personalized approach to help you reach your fitness potential without harming your joints. Expect to burn up to 1,200 calories in one workout and ramp up your metabolism for the next 24 hours. StudioBungee.com 770.693.2630

 

 

P 011Best Personal Training Facility„
Stellar Bodies
With a combination of resistance-driven moves on a megaformer machine, this class provides a 50-minute, low-impact, high-intensity workout that strengthens and lengthens every muscle in your body. StellarBodiesAtl.com, 404.467.1060

 

 

P 012Best Yoga Studio
Thunderbolt Power Yoga
Whether veteran yogi or curious novice, Thunderbolt classes empower yoga students to discover their practice in a community infused with supportive energy. Led by studio owner, Carly Grace Milyo, a team of encouraging instructors awaits you. ThunderboltPowerYoga.com 404.556.1605

 

 

P 013Best Pilates Studio„
Stability Pilates and Physical Therapy
The experienced physical therapists and Pilates instructors at Stability provide expert fitness guidance through customized programs that meet every individual’s needs. Whether it is for general fitness, returning from an injury or even to improve your golf game, Stability will provide quality instruction in a welcoming environment for all levels of physical fitness. StabilityAtlanta.com, 404.303.9153

 

 

 

 

Best Hair Salon for
African-American Hair
Alicia Igess,
Urban Tangles
UrbanTangles.com
Best Hair Salon
for Women
Steve Hightower
Hair Salon &
Day Spa
SteveHightower.com
Best Lashes
Sweet & Lashful
SweetAndLashful.com
Best Makeup Artist
Leslie Crowell, Three-13 Salon,
Spa & Boutique
Three-13.com
Best Manicure
and Pedicure
Sugarcoat Nail
& Beauty Bar
SugarcoatBeauty.com
Best Med Spa
Amachi MedSpa
AmachiMedSpa.com
Best Nonsurgical Facial Rejuvenation (Microneedling, Microdermabrasion) Practice
Pure Aesthetics
& Skin Care
PureAestheticsSkinCare.com
Best Plastic Surgery Center for Buttocks
Dr. Asaf Yalif,
Y Plastic Surgery
YPlasticSurgery.com
Best Plastic Surgery Center for Tummy/Midsection
Dr. Stanley Okoro, Georgia Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
GeorgiaPlastic.com
Best Vein
Treatment Practice
VEINAtlanta
VeinAtlanta.com

COSMETIC/ANTIAGING/BEAUTY

ƒP 014Best Cosmetic Dentistry Practice
Atlanta Center for Cosmetic Dentistry
Led by Dr. Debra Gray King, this team of world-class dentists offer a full menu of preventative and restorative services, extensive options for cosmetic procedures and reconstructive surgery, spa-like amenities, and impeccable service for a beautiful smile. AtlantaCenterForCosmeticDentistry.com 404.994.4509

 

 

ƒP 015Best Hair Salon for Men
Salon Skanda
A top salon for years, men get pampered and polished with expert consultation and services including conditioning treatments and coloring. Here, new expanded hours help you look your best on a powerhouse schedule. SalonSkanda.com 678.705.1052

 

 

P 016Best Brows„
Sarah Powell, Authentic Beauty, LLC
Revel in brow beauty that is expertly tailored to every client inside a full-service salon boasting eco-friendly products, a distinguished staff, and the common goal to empower women toward finding their authentic self. MyImageJourney.com, 404.849.0443

 

 

ƒP 017Best Fillers
A New You Skin and Body Clinic
Whether pampering, rejuvenating or unveiling something new, enjoy high-quality, nonsurgical treatments with proven results. The well-trained team here curates a menu of services just for you. ANewYouClinic.com  678.739.0040

 

 

ƒP 018Best Hair Extensions
Jutta Blase, Carter Barnes
A guru in all things hair and beauty, extensive knowledge and training provide clients with realistic, natural-looking locks. You’ll walk away with hair that is smooth, textured and styled to your exact expectations for a manageable and effortless look. CarterBarnes.com, 404.848.0047

 

 

P 019Best Permanent Makeup „
Janet Wix, CPCP
Achieve permanent, natural-looking beauty with subtle, artful touches that can highlight your best features. Following an expert consultation, Janet, who has over 14 years of permanent makeup experience, will use safe and proven techniques to achieve a result you’ll love. JanetWix.com, 404.933.8140

 

 

P 020Best Blowouts
Blo Blow Dry Bar
No cuts, no color: just wash, Blo, and go! Blo will curl and tame that mane so you can focus on the good stuff. Their expert stylists will get you tressed to impress for any occasion. BloMeDry.com, 404.390.3552

 

 

ƒP 021Best Sunless Tanning
Opulence Spray Tan Club
Named a winner for the third year in a row, Opulence provides clients of all skin types with gorgeous long-lasting color for a natural and realistic looking tan. The company offers award-winning organic formulas, body contouring certification, and accommodating mobile in-home service. OpulenceSprayTan.com 678.480.6742

 

 

P 022Best Esthetician„
Anderson Aesthetics
Reveal the most beautiful version of you through a unique, comprehensive medical program that provides permanent, natural results for hair, skin, brows, chin, eyes, lips and more, via an interactive online consultant and two convenient locations. AndersonAesthetics.com, 404.256.4247

 

 

ƒP 023Best Body Sculpting Practice
Aesthetic Specialty Centre Plastic Surgery and Dermatology
Inside a gorgeous, upscale facility, the ASC team of expert providers offer the latest treatments and technologies available to help patients meet their individual goals. Transform the way your body looks with noninvasive and surgical options and look your best from every angle!             ASD-PSD.com, 770.393.9000

 

 

P 025Best Hair Replacement/Restoration Practice
Anderson Center For Hair
Men and women trust the extensive knowledge and medical training that make Dr. Ken Anderson and Dr. Daniel Lee esteemed professional resources on leading restoration technologies. The duo delivers permanent, beautiful, natural-looking results to their patients. AtlantaHairSurgeon.com, 404.256.4247

 

 

ƒP 024Best Botox
Dermatology Center of Atlanta
For beautiful, healthy skin, this team of board-certified dermatologists and medical professionals blend unmatched service with expert medical and cosmetic dermatology services, including antiaging and skin-care treatments, reward programs, and products. Dermatology-Atlanta.com, 770.497.0699 

 

 

ƒP 026Best Plastic Surgery Center for Nose
Dr. Lisa DiFrancesco, DiFrancesco Plastic Surgery
An award-winning doctor dedicated to providing a superior level of service through cutting-edge technology and unmatched patient interaction,    Dr. DiFrancesco delivers results tailored to the wants and needs of each patient. DrDiFrancesco.com, 404.377.3474

 

 

P 027Best Plastic Surgery Center for Breasts„
Dr. Patricia Yugueros, Luna Plastic Surgery & Medical Spa
Extensive experience, international medical training and the most advanced practices in a comfortable and compassionate atmosphere ensure patients receive the best results for beautiful, natural-looking breasts and much more. LunaPlasticSurgery.com, 678.892.7820

 

 

P 028Best Plastic Surgery Center for Facial Plastic Surgery„
Dr. Elizabeth Whitaker, Atlanta Face & Body Center
As a renowned facial plastic surgeon, noted by peers and patients alike, Dr. Whitaker brings a personalized approach to her work. For patients pursuing everything from minor nonsurgical procedures to intensive reconstructive surgery, she effortlessly delivers natural and optimized results. AtlantaFaceAndBody.com, 678.726.5755

 

 

ƒP 029Best Plastic Surgery Center for Eyes
Dr. Burke Robinson, Robinson Facial Plastic Surgery
Voted a top doctor among his peers, this Atlanta surgeon has 25 years of experience. In this vital niche of plastic surgery, he celebrates the eyes and reveals the best version of them through modern practices and technology. RobinsonFPS.com, 770.667.3090

 

 

ƒP 030Best Waxing
WAXXPOT Sandy Springs
From brows to Brazilians, WAXXPOT is the industry leader in fast, full-body waxing for men and women. This chic waxing salon is conveniently located in the Whole Foods Shopping Center in Sandy Springs. Waxxpot.com, 404.303.9500

 

 

ƒP 031Best Laser Hair Removal Facility
Timeless Aesthetics Medspa of Atlanta
Specializing in FDA-approved laser hair removal for light and dark skin tones, this spa offers Candela and Cutera lasers. The patented cryogen cooling system of the lasers allows for maximum comfort while treating unwanted hair. TimelessMedspaAtl.com, 404.400.6222

 

 

 

 

Best Addiction Care Facility
Talbott Recovery
TalbottCampus.com
Best Arthritis Practice
Arthritis & Rheumatology
of Georgia
ARGMD.net
Best Audiology/
Hear Practice
Atlanta Hearing Associates
HearAtlanta.com
Best Bariatric
Surgery Practice
Dr. Christopher Hart, Atlanta Bariatrics
AtlantaBariatrics.com
Best Cancer Care Facility
TurningPoint Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
MyTurningPoint.org
Best Chiropractic
Care Practice
Excel Chiropractic
ExcelAtl.com
Best Diabetes Care Practice
Dr. Rachel Derr, Endocrine Specialists of Atlanta
EndocrineAtlanta.com
Best Eye Care Practice
EyeSouth Partners
EyeSouthPartners.com
Best Healthy Getaway
(in Atlanta or within
driving distance)
The Woodhouse
Day Spa
WoodhouseSpas.com
Best Heart Health Facility
Piedmont
Heart Institute
Piedmont.org/Heart
Best Hormone
Therapy Practice
New Vitality Medical
NewVitalityMedical.com
Best Integrative/Functional Medicine Practice
CentreSpringMD
CentreSpringMD.com
Best Joint Surgery/Replacement Practice
OrthoAtlanta
OrthoAtlanta.com
Best Massage
Therapy Practice
Warrior Body Spa
WarriorSpa.com
Best Mental
Health Care Practice
Atlanta Center
for Wellness
AtlantaCenterForWellness.com
Best Neurology Practice
Douglas Neurology Associates, P.C.
DouglasNeurology.com
Best OB/GYN Practice
North Atlanta Women’s Care
NAWCare.com
Best Pediatric Practice
Pediatric Orthopaedic Associates
MyPedsOrtho.com
Best Physical
Therapy Center
PT 360
PT360Atl.com
Best Podiatry Center
Village Podiatry Centers
VillagePodiatryCenters.com
Best Reproductive/
Fertility Practice
Reproductive Biology Associates
RBAIVF.com
Best Senior Care Facility
Parc Communities
ParcCommunities.com
Best Weight Loss Clinic
Sparkle Wellness
SparkleANewYou.com

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

ƒP 032Best Brain Health Treatment Center
LearningRx
This organization’s variety of mental workouts through one-on-one brain training has helped more than 100,000 adults and children strengthen their cognitive skills, nourish their brain, raise their IQ, and begin to learn easier, think faster and perform better. LearningRx.com, 404.252.7246

 

 

P 033Best Allergy Practice„
Center for Allergy & Asthma
Here, adults and children have access to multiple treatment approaches for a wide range of allergy conditions. This team of award-winning medical professionals provides careful diagnosis, individualized treatment and patient education. CAAGeorgia.com, 404.994.3574

 

 

ƒP 034Best Back and Spine Care Practice
Resurgens Spine Center
Specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of patients suffering from neck and back pain, the expert physicians offer both nonsurgical and surgical treatment options to get patients back to doing what they love. They are one of Georgia’s leaders in minimally invasive spine procedures with more locations to serve you better. No referral needed. ResurgensSpine.com

 

 

ƒP 035Best General/Family Dental Practice
Maple Drive Dentistry
Dr. Louisa Berman and her team offer a comprehensive dental practice, providing custom cosmetic veneers and implants, same-day crowns and porcelain fillings, as well as additional cosmetic services like Botox® and fillers. MapleDriveDentistry.com 404.237.0497

 

 

P 036Best ENT Practice
ENT Institute
Advanced technologies, cost-effective procedures and unmatched patient care make this the bar for excellence for treating ear, nose and throat conditions. ENTInstitute.com, 678.206.2555

 

 

ƒBest Gastroenterology Practice
P 037Atlanta Gastroenterology Associates
As one of the largest gastroenterology practices in the country, patients receive expert digestive healthcare from an extensive team of diverse, board-certified physicians, including diagnosis, treatment, outpatient procedures and more. AtlantaGastro.com, 866.468.6242

 

 

ƒP 038Best Maternity Hospital
Gwinnett Women’s Pavilion
From maternity education to diagnostic services, as well as newborn intensive care, this designated Baby-Friendly® metro Atlanta hub provides a calming environment for women of all ages to enjoy trusted medical care. GwinnettMedicalCenter.org/MaternityServices, 678.312.4790

 

 

P 040Best Dermatology Practice‚
Dermatology Consultants
For more than 75 years, this practice has been a trusted source for treating skin conditions and providing both medical and aesthetic resolutions. Its top technology and equipment, board-certified dermatologists, expert consultation, and diagnosis and treatment are the springboard for quality care. DermatologyConsultants.org

 

 

ƒP 039Best Urology Practice
Dr. Scott D. Miller, WellStar Health System
With Dr. Miller’s more than 20 years of experience and expertise in robotic and laparoscopic surgery added to the trusted WellStar family, patients receive the best quality of care and service through advanced techniques and proactive treatment plans. ScottDMillerMD.com, 470.956.4230

 

 

Best Stroke Rehabilitation Facility„
Shepherd Center
P 041Shepherd Center’s stroke program focuses on multidisciplinary and individualized services, including treatment for young stroke patients in the prime of their lives. With the patient and family’s involvement, Shepherd Center’s healthcare providers collaborate to deliver high-quality clinical care. Shepherd.org/Patient-Programs/Stroke, 404.350.2020

 

 

P 043Best Pediatric Dentistry„
Nia Pediatric Dentistry
Healthy teeth at an early age start here. Dr. Azi Nia provides a selection of services including pediatric dentistry and preventative care as a board-certified pediatric dentist that is gentle, patient and trained to make young, bright smiles last forever. NiaDentistry.com, 770.479.9999

 

 

P 042Best Primary Care Practice
GMC Primary Care & Speciality Center
You can conveniently tap into expert medical care from Gwinnett Medical Center through in-office, comprehensive and personalized primary care options for the entire family, including diagnostics, treatment and more. GwinnettMedicalCenter.org/Suwanee 678.312.8400

 

 

P 044Best Medical Imaging Center„
OutPatient Imaging
The Atlanta location serves patients with the latest in technology and patient care. Patients benefit from a highly trained staff of registered techs and radiologists, high-quality scans, cost-saving programs and a comfortable, pleasant atmosphere. OutpatientImaging.net, 404.CALL.OPI

 

 

ƒP 045Best Foot and Ankle Care Practice
Resurgens Foot & Ankle Center
The foot and ankle specialists at Resurgens Orthopaedics are all board certified and fellowship trained, serving patients across metro Atlanta with comprehensive and compassionate care. From diagnosis to treatment, they offer surgical and nonsurgical options to help patients feel their best. No referral needed. Resurgens.com/Foot-Ankle

 

 

P 046Best Urgent Care Facility„
WellStreet Urgent Care
As a part of Georgia’s premier urgent care group, Piedmont Urgent Care is redefining the urgent care experience with its unique approach to patient-focused service and commitment to high-quality care for the whole family. WellStreet.com

 

 P 047

Best Orthodontics Practice„
Braces Braces
This experienced team is focused on helping you achieve the smile of your dreams through careful planning and execution. With multiple locations, a family-friendly environment, technology, and caring experts, the staff is confident that they can create a beautiful new smile for you.
Braces-Braces.com

 

 

 

 

Best CSA Program
Soulful Cafe by Soulful Yoga & SUP
SoulfulYogaAtl.com
Best Farm-to-Home Delivery
Nature’s Garden Express
NaturesGardenExpress.com
Best Farm-to-Table Restaurant
The Mill Kitchen and Bar
TheMillKitchenAndBar.com
Best Farmers Market
Your Dekalb Farmers Market
DekalbFarmersMarket.com
Best Food Festival
Taste of Alpharetta
AwesomeAlpharetta.com/Taste-Of-Alpharetta
Best Food Truck
Vego Bistro
VegoBistro.com
Best Health Food Store
Nuts ‘n Berries
NutsNBerries.com
Best Juice Bar
{SAMA} Food for Balance
SamaFoodForBalance.com
Best New Healthy Restaurant
Flower Child
IAmAFlowerChild.com
Best Nutrition Counseling/Coach
Chris Romano
AtlantaSC.com/Coaches
Best Pet-Friendly Restaurant
Lucky’s Burger and Brew
LuckysBurgerAndBrew.com
Best Restaurant Patio
True Food Kitchen
TrueFoodKitchen.com
Best Vegan Restaurant
Loving Hut Vegan Cuisine
LovingHut.us
Best Vegetarian Restaurant
Green Love Kitchen
GreenLoveKitchen.com 

FOOD AND NUTRITION

ƒP 048Best Craft Cocktails
Atlas
Tucked into one of the city’s most luxurious hotels, the ever-evolving, seasonal and hand-shaken cocktail menu is served alongside an elevated curation of tasty small plates in the Tavern at Atlas. Guests can also expect a rotating selection of artfully made entrées in the dining room. AtlasRestaurant.com 404.600.6471

 

 

ƒP 049Best Prepared Healthy Meal Delivery
Fresh ‘N Fit Cuisine
Experience delicious, chef-prepared meals delivered to your door or picked up from over 120 locations around metro Atlanta. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, eat healthy or just don’t have time to cook, Fresh ‘N Fit Cuisine makes it easy for you to do it all. FreshNFitCuisine.com, 678.208.0341

 

 

P 050Best Upscale Healthy Restaurant„
Upbeet
Savor delicious, clean food without sacrificing nutrition through flavorful, vibrant meals and snacks. Expert chefs and people who are passionate about whole, organic food that’s good for you curate the selection here. Upbeet.com, 404.347.1071

 

Monday, 26 November 2018 17:50

Cleaning Up How We Eat

 

 

 

By Jennifer Colosimo

 

In the last decade or so, thinking about what we're putting into our bodies has gotten a lot more on trend. We seek out whole grains and lean meats, and we avoid processed and preserved foods. We take our health seriously and know that feeling good starts with the fuel we're using; and the kind we're using is getting a little ... cleaner.

Unfortunately, it's tricky to eat clean with misleading marketing strategies that make you think what you're consuming is healthy. How can you get healthier and feel better when the food industry makes it so hard? It starts with knowing how to read labels, learning what to avoid and not being afraid to ask questions. The result is an enjoyable, manageable lifestyle—free of junk—that we can maintain forever.

 

What It Means to Eat Clean

P 1According to fitness competitor, radio personality and passionate healthy lifestyle advocate Madison James, the first key to taking clean eating to the next level is knowing where your food comes from.

"If you get meats, fruits and vegetables produced here, in Georgia, you know it's cleaner because nothing had to be added to keep those foods fresh for the trip from the farm to your table," James says. "Then, it's important to know what kind of practices a farm uses on your produce. Think about an organic apple versus a nonorganic apple in the grocery store. The nonorganic apple is vibrant, shiny and looks like a brand-new car. The organic one doesn't, but, it's not supposed to. It took doing something to that nonorganic apple to get it that way—and then that is what goes into our bodies."

SB1"The same goes for restaurants," she adds. "Clean eating doesn't mean you can't go out to eat, but you do have to ask questions. Ask where their foods came from—most of the time they're proud to tell you it came from somewhere local. When it does, and you know that the farm where it came from doesn't use hormones, or inject other chemicals into their animals, then you know what you're eating is clean."

Flower Child, in Buckhead and Sandy Springs, is one of those restaurants where you can trust what's on your plate hasn't been pumped with extra additives.

"People tend to think that eating 'clean' means eating food that's bland in taste," says Flower Child brand chef Peder Bondhus. "Each of our wraps, salads, bowls and plates are built upon simple and fresh ingredients that work together to create a flavorful and delicious dish rich in colorful fruits and veggies."

 

How Things Get Dirty

The bigger problem is in additives like sodium, sugar and manufactured flavorings. Even chicken—Americans eat an average of 87 pounds of chicken per person every year, and about a third of it has been synthetically saturated with water, salt and other additives via needles and vacuums to make it juicier, tastier and more tender, according to Cooking Light. In its 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the U.S. government recommends adults consume no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day. This means you can potentially rack up about a fifth of your daily allotment of sodium with "enhanced" poultry before you even think about adding your own pinch.

P 2Tammy Stokes, a California transplant and founder of Cafe West Express, West Coast Workout, and author of "Live Your Healthiest Life," offered her (dirty) laundry list of things to look out for. We already know to buy high-quality, grass-fed meats, organic eggs, small, cold-water fish that are low in mercury and natural sweeteners like honey, coconut nectar, molasses, maple syrup and stevia to boost eating for your health, but scary chemicals and additives are in a lot of foods we don't think about. She pointed out some of the places where we don't expect to see additives:

  • Chlorine and aluminum: bleached table salt
  • High fructose corn syrup: breads, candy, salad dressing, yogurt, cereal, ketchup
  • Monosodium glutamate (MSG): Chinese food, chips, lunch meats, soups, broths
  • Trans fat: fried and fast foods, margarine, baked goods
  • Artificial sweeteners: gum, toothpaste, breath mints, chewable vitamins, tea
  • Sulfur dioxide: beer, dried fruits, juices, vinegar,
  • potato products
  • Nitrates: lunch meats, bacon, ham, cured meats, smoked fish
  • Food dyes: The worst ones are Blue No. 1 and No. 2, Red No. 1, Yellow No. 6

P 3"I call it eating for your health," says Raul Hiteshew, a self-named nutritarian, competitive bodybuilder and founder of HiveFit All Natural Supplements. "By avoiding artificial sweeteners, colorants, synthetic preservatives or anything that wasn't intended by nature, clean eating naturally sets up our bodies to prevent illness and live a vibrant life."
SB2But sometimes, those additives are even in products customers are buying to actually "get healthier."

"You are not required to list an ingredient in a supplement if it's under half a gram (500 milligrams), or even list the amount used if it's a nonactive ingredient," Hiteshew says. "Some of these ingredients, a little goes a long way, and even half a gram is actually very unhealthy. Grab any protein powder and read the 'other ingredients' below the nutrition label. You will see fillers, anticaking agents, flowing agents and preservatives—and this is assuming you're drinking a healthy product that doesn't use artificial colorants and sweeteners."

Our lesson? Look at the labels, and check the ingredients to reveal exactly what's about to go in your body. If you're opting for something packaged, choose those made with whole ingredients you'd be able to find in your own pantry.

 

How Eating Dirty Makes Us Feel

Why does it matter if we eat clean? When we're overloaded on sodium, we retain water, making us feel sluggish, bloated, maybe even fatigued and depressed. It can give us headaches, muscle cramps and keep us from feeling like the best version of ourselves. Too much sugar can lead to skin problems, diabetes or obesity, even heart problems. Too much fat leads to high blood pressure, bad cholesterol and potentially serious heart issues. Many chemicals and additives have been associated with increasing the risk of cancer. In general, toxins lead to inflammation, and inflammation prevents our bodies from fighting disease, staying healthy and operating the way they were meant to.

"When you eat foods that are clean, like fresh produce and simply prepared proteins, you feel an energy that lifts you up and is more consistent over time," Bondhus says. "Foods that are not clean have the opposite effect, weighing you down and taking away energy. Your body actually has a harder time processing all of the extra ingredients that it's not familiar with and aren't natural," he adds.

"Clean eating is based on the foundation of eating foods that create health not deteriorate it," says Stokes. "Food is either good medicine or a bad drug, and eating clean is the first step to better health."

 

How to Beat the Tricks and Train Your Palate

"The technology and psychology behind making packaged foods is shockingly advanced. You can control taste, reactions and emotions by modifying it genetically or simply adding sugars, MSG, phosphate salts, etcetera," says Hiteshew. "It can get overwhelming quickly, but if you start reading labels before something goes into your shopping cart, you can beat the sneaky marketing strategies and fill your pantry with the right foods."

P 4"Once you stop eating so much sugar, salt and unnecessary fat in your food, you'll actually be able to taste fresh, delicious pure flavors," says Nancy Waldeck, a healthy chef and "partyologist" who turned her love for food and entertaining into a healthy lifestyle. "When eaters realize that they can make food at home that is delicious and tastes better than the food they have been ordering out, it opens up the possibilities to feel and look better.

"Being a label detective is the best way to shop," she adds. "I often use a box of organic mac and cheese to illustrate this. That 'organic' product contains excess sugar, salt and loads of preservatives, even though you thought you were buying something healthy. When you make mac and cheese at home, you can make it super delicious and you get to be in charge of the ingredients."

Stokes adds, "Clean food tastes real and delicious, because most of the time it is made with fruits and vegetables that are fresh and in season, so the flavors are at their peak."

"Real clean eating doesn't mean you have to eliminate whole food groups or never go out to eat again," James says. "It's simply about eating real, whole foods, and eliminating the junk that doesn't belong in our bodies. It takes work and commitment, yes, but the people who do it have never felt better."

 

Resources:
Peder Bondhus, Flower Child, IAmAFlowerChild.com
Raul Hiteshew, HiveFit All Natural Supplements, HiveFit.com
Madison James, Instagram.com/MadisonJames404
Tammy Stokes, Cafe West Express, West Coast Workout, WestCoastWorkout.com
Nancy Waldeck, Taste and Savor, TasteAndSavor.com

Monday, 26 November 2018 17:17

Dare to Dream, Again

By Jennifer Colosimo

If Megan Callihan had been a teacher from the start, she’d have a road map already perfected by her mother, aunt, grandmother, and even her sister. She’d already have tenure and she’d probably be debt free. But the 31-year-old wanted to be different. She pursued a career where she could stand out from her family, climbing the corporate ladder in hospitality management.

If Megan Callihan had been a teacher from the start, she’d have a road map already perfected by her mother, aunt, grandmother, and even her sister. She’d already have tenure and she’d probably be debt free. But the 31-year-old wanted to be different. She pursued a career where she could stand out from her family, climbing the corporate ladder in hospitality management.
“We spend our childhoods dreaming of what we want to be when we grow up,” Callihan says. “But often once that era arrives, we’ve winded our way down a different path. The doctor or astronaut dreams are forgotten, and whatever job we get becomes life. … At a certain point, my priorities began to shift. My husband and I started talking about our future and it became apparent that the career path I was on didn’t line up with what we wanted for our family.”

Callihan’s path is a familiar one for many people, one that starts to get bumpy somewhere along the line and introduces a yearning to do something different. Thus, a large part of adult society is going back to the classroom. This guide offers encouragement to adults who are looking to find their “thing,” a field they’re passionate about, happy in and proud of.

1. Figure out why you want to change careers.

In 2020, nearly 20 percent of college and graduate students are expected to be over the age of 35, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. If you’re going to be one of that growing number, make sure you know the reasons behind your restlessness.

The most common reasons to go back:

  • Seeking a change in work-life balance
  • Re-entering the workforce after raising a family
  • A result of early retirement and the need to keep doing something
  • To open doors for advancement opportunities in a current field
  • To establish job security in a current position
  • To do something different

Amanda Young, director of admissions and student services at Belhaven University-Atlanta says, “The decision to change careers or go back to college has a lot to do with [individuals] being at a point in their life where they feel the freedom to pursue what truly interests them.”
But, buyer beware. Hone in on those reasons before you quit your current job, or pay for more schooling. Debbie Aiken, director of extended learning in the Office of Admission at Oglethorpe University says, “Changing careers can be a very personal decision, but it can take time for a person to discover their true passion, or pinpoint their professional strengths.”

2. Start asking questions.

According to “USA Today” and HuffingtonPost.com, in 2025, employers will need roughly 23 million more workers with degrees than the country’s colleges and universities are producing at their current rate. With the right credentials, you could be a hot commodity when it comes to filling those positions. Start prepping now by seeking out professionals who are already in your field of interest and ask a lot of questions.

  • How did they get to where they are?
  • What kind of schooling did they go through?
  • What is their current experience like?
  • What is the average starting salary? How much can you make in their field?

3. Do a lot of research.

Based on the answers to those questions, find out where you can go to get the training, certifications or degree that is required for your potential new job. And even before you apply, look for ways to immerse yourself in that new field so that you can get hands-on exposure and a reality check on how committed you are to a career change.

  • Check out The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the O*NET Resource Center to survey expected skills required for the job you want
  • Attend events or seminars to expand your knowledge
  • Get an internship that offers face time and hands-on experience with professionals in your new field

4. Make connections.
Networking not only provides a resource for asking questions, but it will help you meet the people you need to make connections with in hopes that they can assist you with landing a job later.

  • Get to know your teachers/instructors
  • Meet and harbor relationships with pros already in the field
  • Join professional groups related to your career

5. Get trained.

Whether it’s attending college and taking courses, a weekend-long certification, or any type of training program in between, you’ll have to develop the skills to become a competitive candidate for a new position. Consider the following:

  • Online schooling
  • Continuing education programs
  • Certification courses

P1Michelle Girage, assistant dean of the College of Continuing and Professional Education at Kennesaw State University says, “Employers value the time, effort and commitment individuals make through continuing education programs that provide students with practical, hands-on experience.”

It might be impossible for you to attend traditional school hours; instead, seek out institutions that offer programs created specifically for working adults.

Deciding where to take classes is important, but getting organized for your second go-round can make the end result a perfect fit.

  • Dig up transcripts to credit toward your new degree, if applicable
  • Get to know your adviser, so you take only the courses you need
  • Map out your schooling, so you know how long it will take to graduate
  • Know what you need; in some cases, a degree isn’t necessary. When a candidate already has an understanding of the subject matter, a professional certificate program can get you job-qualified, in some cases, without stressful (and expensive) semesters

6 Make sure you can afford it. 

According to Student Loan Hero, Americans owe over $1.48 trillion in student loan debt.
“It’s important for students to do their research about salary expectations and managing student debt,” Aiken says.
That said, there are several options adults can seek out when paying out of pocket is just too expensive.

  • Look for employer-paid tuition
  • reimbursement options
  • Apply for scholarships
  • Check eligibility for alumni discounts
  • Pay attention to education benefits from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Ask about flexible payment plans
  • Research the various types of state and federal aid available and complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

Taking advantage of the resources around you can help make your career transition a successful one. And while juggling school, life, and expenses can be challenging, putting time into thoughtfully planning your entrance into a new profession can make all the difference.

 

Resources:
Debbie Aiken, Oglethorpe University, Oglethorpe.edu
Michelle Girage, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw.edu
Amanda Young, Belhaven University-Atlanta, Atlanta.Belhaven.edu

Friday, 05 October 2018 18:21

Best of 2018 Contest Winners

2015 General RIBBON Thank you to

everyone who voted!

Here are the results

of your votes.


Announcing the

"Best of 2018"

Contest Winners:

 

Fitness/Weight Loss Section

 

 

Best Athletic Club Windy Hill Athletic Club
Best Barre Studio Barre3-East Cobb
Best Boot Camp BodyJump Fitness
Best Boxing Workout Facility Fitbox Training Perimeter
Best CrossFit Gym CrossFit Vesuvio
Best Cycling Shop Outback Bikes
Best Dance Fitness Facility Dance 101
Best Fitness Apparel Store Lululemon Athletica
Best Fitness Equipment Store Play it Again Sports
Best Golf Instruction Jon Veldhuis, Capital City Club
Best Gym SculptHouse
Best HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) Facility FIT9
Best Indoor Cycling Studio TURN Studio
Best Kid Fitness Facility Kinetic Sports Elite
Best Martial Arts Training Team Octopus Fitness
Best New Boutique Fitness Studio Bungee
Best Outdoor Gear Store Mountain High Outfitters
Best Outdoor Sports Instruction REI Co-op
Best Personal Trainer Pamela Molinari, Atlanta Fitness Diva
Best Personal Training Facility Stellar Bodies
Best Pilates Studio Stability Pilates and Physical Therapy
Best Rec Sports League Atlanta Flying Disc Club
Best Running/Walking Gear Store Big Peach Running Co.
Best Senior Fitness Facility Family Life Center, Second-Ponce De Leon Baptist Church
Best Tennis Facility Life Time Fitness
Best Water Sports Instruction 20,000 Leagues Scuba and Aquatics
Best Yoga Studio Thunderbolt Power Yoga

 

Cosmetic/Antiaging/Beauty Section

 
Best Blowouts Blo Blow Dry Bar
Best Body Sculpting Practice Aesthetic Specialty Centre Plastic Surgery and Dermatology
Best Botox Dermatology Center of Atlanta
Best Brows Sarah Powell, Authentic Beauty
Best Cosmetic Dentistry Practice Atlanta Center for Cosmetic Dentistry
Best Esthetician Anderson Aesthetics
Best Fillers A New You Skin and Body Clinic
Best Hair Extensions Jutta Blase, Carter Barnes
Best Hair Replacement/Restoration Practice Anderson Center For Hair
Best Hair Salon for African-American Hair Alicia Igess, Urban Tangles
Best Hair Salon for Men Salon Skanda
Best Hair Salon for Women Steve Hightower Hair Salon & Day Spa
Best Laser Hair Removal Facility Timeless Aesthetics Medspa of Atlanta
Best Lashes Sweet & Lashful
Best Makeup Artist Leslie Crowell, Three-13 Salon, Spa & Boutique
Best Manicure and Pedicure Sugarcoat Nail & Beauty Bar
Best Med Spa Amachi MedSpa
Best Nonsurgical Facial Rejuvenation (Microneedling, Microdermabrasion) Practice Pure Aesthetics & Skin Care
Best Permanent Makeup Janet Wix
Best Plastic Surgery Center for Breasts Dr. Patricia Yugueros, Luna Plastic Surgery & Medical Spa
Best Plastic Surgery Center for Buttocks Dr. Asaf Yalif, Y Plastic Surgery
Best Plastic Surgery Center for Eyes Dr. Burke Robinson, Robinson Facial Plastic Surgery
Best Plastic Surgery Center for Facial Plastic Surgery Dr. Elizabeth Whitaker, Atlanta Face & Body Center
Best Plastic Surgery Center for Nose Dr. Lisa DiFrancesco, DiFrancesco Plastic Surgery
Best Plastic Surgery Center for Tummy/Midsection Dr. Stanley Okoro, Georgia Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
Best Sunless Tanning Opulence Spray Tan Club
Best Vein Treatment Practice VEINAtlanta
Best Waxing The Waxxpot

 

Health and Wellness Section

 
Best Addiction Care Facility Talbott Recovery
Best Allergy Practice Center for Allergy & Asthma
Best Arthritis Practice Arthritis & Rheumatology of Georgia
Best Audiology/ Hear Practice Atlanta Hearing Associates
Best Back and Spine Care Practice Resurgens Spine Center
Best Bariatric Surgery Practice Dr. Christopher Hart, Atlanta Bariatrics
Best Brain Health Treatment Center LearningRx
Best Cancer Care Facility TurningPoint Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
Best Chiropractic Care Practice Excel Chiropractic
Best Dermatology Practice Dermatology Consultants
Best Diabetes Care Practice Dr. Rachel Derr, Endocrine Specialists of Atlanta
Best ENT Practice ENT Institute
Best Eye Care Practice EyeSouth Partners
Best Foot and Ankle Care Practice Resurgens Foot & Ankle Center
Best Gastroenterology Practice Atlanta Gastroenterology Associates
Best General/Family Dental Practice Maple Drive Dentistry
Best Healthy Getaway (in Atlanta or within driving distance) The Woodhouse Day Spa
Best Heart Health Facility Piedmont Heart Institute
Best Hormone Therapy Practice New Vitality Medical
Best Integrative/Functional Medicine Practice CentreSpringMD
Best Joint Surgery/Replacement Practice OrthoAtlanta
Best Massage Therapy Practice Warrior Body Spa
Best Maternity Hospital Gwinnett Women's Pavilion
Best Medical Imaging Center OutPatient Imaging
Best Mental Health Care Practice Atlanta Center for Wellness
Best Neurology Practice Douglas Neurology Associates, P.C.
Best OB/GYN Practice North Atlanta Women's Care
Best Orthodontics Practice Braces Braces
Best Pediatric Dentistry Nia Pediatric Dentistry
Best Pediatric Practice Pediatric Orthopaedic Associates
Best Physical Therapy Center PT 360
Best Podiatry Center Village Podiatry Centers
Best Primary Care Practice GMC Primary Care & Speciality Center
Best Reproductive/Fertility Practice Reproductive Biology Associates
Best Senior Care Facility Parc Communities
Best Stroke Rehabilitation Facility Shepherd Center
Best Urgent Care Facility WellStreet Urgent Care
Best Urology Practice Dr. Scott Miller, WellStar Health System
Best Weight Loss Clinic Sparkle Wellness

 

Life Enrichment Section

 
Best Active Senior Living Community Village Park Senior Living
Best Animal Clinic Baranik Animal Care
Best Ballroom Dance Studio International Dance Studios
Best Bookstore Phoenix & Dragon
Best Charity Ball/Gala Smiley for Kylie
Best Charity Race Georgia 2-Day Walk for Breast Cancer
Best Comedy Club The Basement Theatre
Best Community Garden Oakhurst Community Garden
Best Continuing Education Program for Adults Kennesaw State University
Best Cooking Classes/School The Cook's Warehouse
Best Dance Club MJQ Concourse
Best Doggy Daycare Puppy Haven
Best Financial Planning/Services Faye Sykes, Scarlet Oak Financial Services
Best Gardening Classes Taproot Hydroponics
Best Groomer Swanky Paws Pet Spa
Best Hidden Gem for Live Music MadLife Stage & Studios
Best Life Coach New Perspectives for Life
Best Marriage Counseling/Therapy Practice CURA Couples and Family Therapy Center of Atlanta
Best Museum Waffle House Museum
Best New Give-Back Initiative Fab Women Over 50 Flower Power Calendar
Best Pet Rescue Organization Angels Among Us Pet Rescue
Best Pet Store Hollywood Feed
Best Pet Trainer Peach on a Leash
Best Pet Walker/Sitter Service CutiePaws Pet Sitting
Best Staycation The St. Regis Atlanta
Best Team Building Event Urban Escape Games

 

Food and Nutrition Section

 
Best Craft Cocktails Atlas
Best CSA Program Soulful Cafe by Soulful Yoga & SUP
Best Farm-to-Home Delivery Nature's Garden Express
Best Farm-to-Table Restaurant The Mill Kitchen and Bar
Best Farmers Market Your Dekalb Farmers Market
Best Food Festival Taste of Alpharetta
Best Food Truck Vego Bistro
Best Health Food Store Nuts 'n Berries
Best Juice Bar {SAMA} Food for Balance
Best New Healthy Restaurant Flower Child
Best Nutrition Counseling/Coach Chris Romano
Best Pet-Friendly Restaurant Lucky's Burger and Brew
Best Prepared Healthy Meal Delivery Fresh 'N Fit Cuisine
Best Restaurant Patio True Food Kitchen
Best Upscale Healthy Restaurant Upbeet
Best Vegan Restaurant Loving Hut Vegan Cuisine
Best Vegetarian Restaurant Green Love Kitchen
   

Thursday, 27 September 2018 18:22

Atlanta’s Tooth Fairy

Dr. Azi Nia creates a whimsical wonderland for her
patients at Nia Pediatric Dentistry.

By Katherine Michalak

For Dr. Azi Nia, board-certified pediatric dentist, establishing a practice in the heart of East Cobb was a natural extension of her commitment to serve the families of her beloved community. "This is home for me," Dr. Azi (as her patients call her) says. "Being here makes perfect sense." She moved to East Cobb over 20 years ago. She and her family transitioned easily thanks to the welcoming environment of their new neighborhood. For years, Dr. Azi could be found working part-time at the Parkaire Kroger pharmacy while attending Georgia State University and developing the customer service expertise she'd bring with her as she studied pediatric dentistry and established her own practice.

Dr. Azi attended the Georgia State University, graduating with her undergraduate degree in mathematics and chemistry. She continued on to the Medical College of Georgia where she earned her Doctorate of Dental Medicine. In order to become a specialist in pediatric dentistry, Dr. Azi completed a three-year residency at Children's Hospital Colorado where she also served as chief resident. During these three years, Dr. Azi treated a diverse population of medically compromised patients and people with special healthcare needs and was an active participant with the craniofacial lip and palate team. Shortly thereafter, she received the status of Diplomate by the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry.

P1Dr. Azi is dedicated to providing excellent pediatric dental care and building confidence in her patients. Creating a positive dental experience customized to each young patient is central to Dr. Azi's practice philosophy. She believes in supporting her patients and their families by finding realistic solutions and preventing problems before they arise. Dr. Azi's greatest goal is helping a child overcome their fear and anxiety, getting them to a point where they enjoy their appointments. "We want to change [the typical child's] fear of dentistry." We focus on preventative care using the latest technology and a fun friendly environment that takes that fear away. We want kids to have fun in a relaxing environment. Our goal for our office is to be far from the traditional dental offices." In addition to standard pediatric dental services, Dr. Azi also offers hospital dentistry and laser treatment for lip/tongue ties to help infants with breastfeeding and toddlers with speech issues.

Her mission becomes evident the moment visitors walk through the front door of Nia Pediatric Dentistry and into the whimsical wonderland of Dr. Azi's fully-customized clinic space (or possibly prior to that if they've spotted the hippo-emblazoned vehicle parked outside). More than bright colors or thematic displays, this entire office feels like a giant playroom—life-sized cartoon animal figurines perch throughout, lively murals feature impish creatures to spark the imagination, game and video terminals hover above exam chairs, baskets of toys and books delight curious little ones, and there's even a quiet private work area for parents. Every element of the design incorporates the child's perspective and caters to their needs while boasting the most advanced technology and involving parents in the treatment whenever desired. "A lot of times I think the kids read the fears of their parents," Dr. Azi reveals. "And parents always ask me, 'Where were you when I was growing up?' and 'Can you see me as well?'"

P2The amusement at the office carries over into Dr. Azi's personal life as well. "We have such a haven here in East Cobb. Great schools, true family-focused environment, parents who stay really involved with their children, and a strong community." Dr. Azi and her husband, Dr. Farshid Nia DMD, MSD, who is the clinical director at BB Braces Braces and an advisory board member at North American Dental Group, spend time enjoying a variety of activities that include their two children, Shervin and Leena, and their three family dogs. "We go to East Cobb Park," Dr. Azi says. "And there are so many wonderful places to eat too! We love Camps Kitchen & Bar and Moxie Burger in Paper Mill Village, or Tijuana Joe's for Mexican P3food, or Drift Fish House & Oyster Bar for seafood." NiaDentistry.com, 1111 Johnson Ferry Rd., 770-479-9999. The content for this article is brought to you by Nia Pediatric Dentistry.

 

Words of Wisdom fromDr. Azi Nia

Dr. Azi (as her patients call her) strives to teach kids superior dental care, and she enlists parents to aid. "Parents should supervise brushing until kids can tie their own shoes and write in cursive," Dr. Azi asserts. Adults should monitor the process to make sure the child brushes at least twice a day for two minutes each time. "Also, floss every day," Dr. Azi instructs. "Rinses are good but they don't replace flossing." And what treats make her naughty list? "Drinking soda and juice constantly is soaking teeth in acid and sugar. Drink water! Kids need to snack on crunchy fruits and vegetables more and sticky candy less!"

Dr. Azi says,"A pediatric dentist is the pediatrician for overall oral health. All kids should see a pediatric dentist by age 1."

 

Wednesday, 26 September 2018 21:02

whole body health guide A-Z

 

 

 

Fitness & Movement

 

p19Round 30 Min Kickbox Fitness
2899-B N. Decatur Rd.
Decatur, GA 30033
(404) 343-0286
9Round.com/DecaturGAN
9Round is the ultimate 30-minute, total-body, kickboxing circuit! We don't waste a minute of your time. It's the END of boring cardio and the first workout is ALWAYS free! 9Round is dedicated to providing a unique, fun and proven workout that guarantees results!

 

p2Atlanta Fitness Diva
855 Mt. Vernon Hwy. NE., Ste. 200 Atlanta, GA 30328
(404) 531-5000
AtlantaFitnessDiva.com
Atlanta Fitness Diva in Sandy Springs is the premier training studio for women. Strength training, sculpting workouts, specialized lower body stations and personal attention to the client is what makes them unique. Owner Pamela Molinari is a 32-year veteran trainer whose achievements include being voted Best Fitness Facility 2018 by My Sandy Springs magazine.

 

 

 

The Center for Integrative Yoga Studies
1924 Clairmont Rd., Ste. 140
Decatur, GA
(404) 217-7453
IntegrativeYogaStudies.com

 

p3Club Pilates
5968 Roswell Rd.
Sandy Springs, GA 30328
(404) 588-2500
ClubPilates.com
We believe Pilates is the best workout in the world, so we're bringing it to the masses! Increase your strength, flexibility, and stamina no matter your fitness level or injury history. Whether you're a fine-tuned pro athlete or you've had 3 ACL surgeries, Pilates is for every body!

 

Concourse Athletic Club
8 Concourse Pkwy.
Sandy Springs, GA 30328
(770) 698-2000
ConcourseClub.com

 

p4F45 Training Sandy Springs
6125 Roswell Rd., Ste. 1000
Atlanta, GA 30328
(770) 268-3345
F45Training.com
F45 Training, the fastest growing fitness network is now in Sandy Springs! Team-based, functional training workout that places emphasis on motivation, innovation and results. HIIT-style workout using combinations of strength and cardio, the 45-minute sessions are designed to burn upwards of 750 calories. (directly across from Rumi's Kitchen)

 

 

p5Giving Tree Yoga
1295 W. Spring St., Ste. 120
Smyrna, GA 30080
(770) 626-1559
YogaSmyrna.com
Giving Tree Yoga is a mindful studio located in the Smyrna Market Village. Our classes are perfect for both beginner and advanced students. Our teachers will guide you through your practice and offer modifications for all levels of experience. We offer Vinyasa Flow, Gentle Flow, Yoga Basics, Yin/Restorative Yoga classes.

 

GYMGUYZ of North Alpharetta-West Roswell
(678) 258-7555
GymGuyz.com

 

Midtown Trainers
2115 Piedmont Rd. NE., Ste. 106
Atlanta, GA 30324
(404) 348-6377
MidtownTrainers.com

 

p6Next Age Fitness
1610 Lavista Rd. NE., Ste. 1
Atlanta, GA 30329
(404) 998-4432
NextAgeFitness.com
Next Age Fitness understands busy professionals! We use cutting-edge equipment that challenges specific muscle groups and provides a safe, effective and *efficient* method of strength training. Grow muscle mass and improve bone density with our 20-minute workout. Experience the future of exercise now! Call today for your Free Demo.

 

 

SculptHouse
3167 Peachtree Rd. NE., Ste. Q
Atlanta, GA 30305
(470) 553-0080
SculptHouse.com

 

Sculpted Body
1205 Johnson Ferry Rd., Ste. 133
Marietta, GA 30068
(770) 971-9999
SculptedBodyAtl.com

 

Stability Pilates and Physical Therapy
5975 Roswell Rd., Ste. C-33
Sandy Springs, GA 30328
(404) 303-9153
StabilityAtlanta.com

 

Thunderbolt Power Yoga
3872 Roswell Rd. NE., Unit C4
Atlanta, GA 30342
(404) 556-1605
ThunderboltPowerYoga.com

 

Windy Hill Athletic Club
135 Interstate N. Pkwy. NW.
Atlanta, GA 30339
(770) 953-1100
WindyHillClub.com

 

 

Food & Nutrition

 

Arden's Garden
13 Locations Across Metro Atlanta
(404) 209-1200
ArdensGarden.com

 

Betsy Thurston Registered Dietitian
813 Burning Tree Ct. SE.
Marietta, GA 30067
(404) 295-1415
BetsyThurstonRD.com

 

Bowl Lab
3621 Vinings Slope SE., Ste. 1110
Atlanta, GA 30339
(770) 371-2695
AtlBowlLab.com

 

Cafe Sunflower
2140 Peachtree Rd. NW.
Atlanta, GA 30309
(404) 352-8859
CafeSunflower.com

 

Your Dekalb Farmers Market
3000 E. Ponce de Leon Ave.
Decatur, GA 30030
(404) 377-6400
DekalbFarmersMarket.com

 

dtox juice
3850 Roswell Rd. NE., Atlanta, GA 30342
(855) 981-3869
DtoxJuice.com

 

Dulce Vegan Bakery & Cafe
1994 Hosea L. Williams Dr. NE.
Atlanta, GA 30317
(404) 624-7417
DulceVegan.com

 

Flower Child
3400 Around Lenox Rd., #207
Atlanta, GA 30326
(678) 668-2271
IAmAFlowerChild.com

 

Fresh 'N Fit Cuisine
6080 Parkway North Dr., Ste. 200
Cumming, GA 30040
(678) 208-0341
FreshNFitCuisine.com

 

p7Good Measure Meals
181 Armour Dr. NE.
Atlanta, GA 30324
(404) 815-7695
GoodMeasureMeals.com
As Atlanta's Local Kitchen on a Mission, Good Measure Meals cooks and delivers fresh, healthy meals across Metro Atlanta and Athens. "With the Good Measure Meals Fuel plan, I've finally found a great balance with protein and carbs. The food is amazing—better than a restaurant!" — Tina T., Atlanta

 

hCG Weight Loss Atlanta
6667 Vernon Woods Dr., Ste. B-40
Sandy Springs, GA 30328
(404) 968-9642
HCGWeightLossAtlanta.com

 

p8HiveFit Supplements
Alpharetta, GA 30004
HiveFit.com
Truly the purest and healthiest supplements in the market. A science-based company with a holistic approach offers high quality, yet affordable products for the whole family and all fitness levels. This Alpharetta-based company was started after seeing the current supplement industry sacrifice quality for profits. "We are recovering and saving the supplement industry," says owner and formulator, Raul Hiteshew.

 

 

 

 

 

Kale Me Crazy
3167 Peachtree Rd., Ste. F
Atlanta, GA 30305
(404) 975-3487
KaleMeCrazy.net

 

Loving Hut
220 Hammond Dr., #302
Sandy Springs, GA 30328
(404) 941-7992
LovingHut.us

 

MetroFresh
931 Monroe Dr. NE., Ste. A106
Atlanta, GA 30308
(404) 724-0151
MetroFreshAtl.com

 

{SAMA} Food For Balance
56 E. Andrews Dr. NW., Ste. 17
Atlanta, GA 30305
(404) 500-3550
SAMAFoodForBalance.com

 

Sublime Tree
10971 Crabapple Rd., Ste. 1900
Roswell, GA 30075
(678) 373-3518
SublimeTree.com

 

True Food Kitchen
3393 Peachtree Rd. NE., Ste. 3058B
Atlanta, GA 30326
(404) 481-2980
TrueFoodKitchen.com

 

Upbeet
1071 Howell Mill Rd., Ste. A
Atlanta, GA 30318
(404) 347-1071
Upbeet.com

 

 

Wellness & Prevention

 

Aesthetic Body Sculpture Clinic & Center for Anti-Aging
4840 Roswell Rd. NE., Bldg. D, Ste. 100 Atlanta, GA 30342
(770) 777-7707
SlaterMD.com

 

p9Atlanta Smiles & Wellness
4405 Northside Pkwy. NW., #110
Atlanta, GA 30327
(404) 262-7733
AtlantaSmiles.com
At Atlanta Smiles & Wellness, we are committed to your overall health! We are helping save lives by designing oral appliance therapy to treat sleep apnea patients. The three main factors that impact obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) are age, anatomy, and weight. Untreated OSA has been shown to take almost seven years off your life—it is a matter of life and death.

 

Center For Weight Management At Gwinnett Medical Center
3215 McClure Bridge Rd.
Duluth, GA 30096
(678) 312-6200
GwinnettMedicalCenter.org

 

p10CentreSpringMD
1401 Dresden Dr.
Atlanta, GA 30319
(404) 814-9808
CentreSpringMD.com
At CentreSpringMD, our team of eight board-certified providers use an integrative approach to get to the root cause of your symptoms. Led by Dr. Taz Bhatia, MD, our team has brought healing to more than 14,000 adult and pediatric patients. From thyroid to food sensitivity, weight loss to ADHD—our team is committed to helping your whole family thrive.

 

 

p11Dermatology Consultants
Covington (770) 784-0343
Buckhead (404) 351-7546
Marietta (770) 971-3376
DermatologyConsultants.org
Although we tend to spend less time outdoors during the winter, the Georgia sun is a constant presence. In fact, by neglecting to apply daily sunscreen during the colder months, our skin is often more susceptible to harmful radiation than it is during the spring and summer. Schedule your yearly skin checks today!

 

Excel Chiropractic
285 Mt. Vernon Hwy. NE.
Atlanta, GA 30328
(770) 743-4393
ExcelAtl.com

 

Medical Creations Integrative Medicine
4840 Roswell Rd. NE., Bldg. A, #200
Atlanta, GA 30342
(678) 732-9065
MCIMAtlanta.com

 

Medical & Sports Massage
220 Sandy Springs Cir., #157B
Atlanta, GA 30328
(404) 295-7040
LiveLifePainFree.com

 

p12Medical Weight Loss by Healthogenics
2286 Peachtree Rd. NW.
Atlanta, GA 30309
1-800-668-5211
MDWLS.com
Medical Weight Loss by Healthogenics has helped thousands of clients lose millions of pounds with our proven, successful, and guaranteed weight loss programs. We offer customized weight loss programs for children, teens, men, and women, and specialize in helping those that have high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes.

 

 

p13Medi-Weightloss, Woodstock
12195 GA-92, #144
Woodstock, GA 30188
(678) 540-7827
MediWeightloss.com/Locations/Woodstock
The Medi-Weightloss® Program is not a diet; it's a lifestyle change! Get off the dieting roller coaster and rejuvenate your life, learning to live healthy and lean for a lifetime. Our trained professionals help make your weight loss journey stress free and uncomplicated. Initial consultation
is FREE! Now accepting insurance.

 

p14Morrow Family Medicine
Located in Cumming and Milton
(770) 781-8004
MorrowFamMed.com
Morrow Family Medicine is a technologically advanced "Old-Fashioned" family practice. Are you looking for providers who care? You will find a home with us! We have two locations: Cumming and Milton. Our walk-in hour from 7:30am to 8:30am is very popular. Morrow Family Medicine ... bringing care back to healthcare.

 

 

 

North Atlanta Dermatology
3850 Pleasant Hill Rd.
Duluth, GA 30096
(770) 814-8222
NADerm.com

 

Progressive Medical Center
4646 N. Shallowford Rd.
Atlanta, GA 30338
(770) 676-6000
ProgressiveMedicalCenter.com

 

Revive Atlanta MD
2786 N. Decatur Rd., Ste. 230
Decatur, GA 30033
(404) 835-2637
ReviveAtlMD.com

 

The Saul Clinic of Chiropractic
6667 Vernon Woods Dr. NE.
Sandy Springs, GA 30328
(404) 252-0014
AdjustCause.com

 

Three D Wellness
555 Sun Valley Dr., Ste. C1
Roswell, GA 30076
(678) 621-8100
ThreeDWellness.com

 

p15TurningPoint Breast Cancer Rehabilitation
8010 Roswell Rd., Ste. 120
Atlanta, GA 30350
(770) 360-9271
MyTurningPoint.org
TurningPoint Breast Cancer Rehabilitation is a unique nonprofit organization that improves quality of life for breast cancer patients by providing, promoting and advocating specialized and evidence-based rehabilitation. Services include physical therapy, massage therapy, counseling, exercise classes, and education programs. TurningPoint is located in a clinic off Roswell Road in Atlanta.

 

WellStar Kennestone Hospital
677 Church St.
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 793-5000
WellStar.org

 

 

Relaxation & Clarity

 

Art It Out Therapy Center
4300 Paces Ferry Rd. SE., Ste. 357
Atlanta, GA 30339
(770) 989-1300
ArtItOut.com

 

Clinical & Forensic Psychology Services
2751 Buford Hwy., Ste. #410
Atlanta, GA 30324
(770) 396-2206
ClinicalForensicPsychSvs.com

 

Creative Solutions Through Hypnosis
2470 Windy Hill Rd., Ste. #159
Marietta, GA 30067
(678) 822-6411
CSHypnosis.com

 

Empower Rehab & Wellness
1708 Peachtree St. NW., #103
Atlanta, GA 30309
(404) 597-7308
AtlantaEmpower.com

 

Gedalia Healing Arts
(678) 357-3443
GedaliaHealingArts.com

 

p16Hypnotherapy of North GA
110 Samaritan Dr., #212
Cumming, GA 30040
(678) 353-3243
HypnosPro.com
Hypnotherapy of North Georgia is a provider of hypnotherapy services for the Metro Atlanta area. Hypnotherapist, Raymond Berger helps people struggling with Anxiety, Stress, Depression, Confidence issues, Insomnia and PTSD. Medically, Hypnosis can help clients with: IBS/Crohn's, chronic pain, drug-free childbirth, smoking cessation, permanent weight loss and more.

 

 

 

p17JeJu Sauna & Spa Home of Wellbeing
3555 Gwinnett Pl. Dr. NW.
Duluth, GA 30096
(678) 336-7414
JejuSauna.com

 

Perspire Sauna Studio
322 Pharr Rd. NE.
Atlanta, GA 30305
(678) 718-7732
PerspireSaunaStudio.com

 

Presents of Mind Hypnosis
1963 Hosea Williams Dr.
Atlanta, GA 30317
(404) 449-9266
PresentsOfMindHypnosis.com

 

The Spa at Mandarin Oriental, Atlanta
3376 Peachtree Rd. NE., Fl. 3
Mandarin Oriental, Atlanta, GA 30326
(404) 995-7526
MandarinOriental.com

 

Warrior Body Spa
2298 Brockett Rd.
Tucker, GA 30084
(404) 994-4498
WarriorSpa.com

 

 

Life Enrichment

 

AR Workshop Smyrna
1675 Cumberland Pkwy. SE., Ste. 406
Smyrna, GA 30080
(404) 946-9343
ARWorkshop.com/Smyrna

 

Atlanta Humane Society
981 Howell Mill Rd. NW.
Atlanta, GA 30318
(404) 875-5331
HumaneSociety.org

 

Atlanta Rocks! Indoor Rock Climbing Gym
1019 Collier Rd. NW., Ste. A
Atlanta, GA 30318
(404) 351-3009
AtlantaRocks.com

 

Ballroom Dance Clubs of Atlanta
Atlanta (404) 897-5556
Duluth (678) 417-7555
MyBallroomDanceClub.com

 

Bowlero
2749 Delk Rd., Marietta, GA 30067
(770) 988-8813
Bowlero.com

 

Callaway Gardens
17800 US-27, Pine Mountain, GA 31822
(844) 512-3826
CallawayGardens.com

 

p18Château Élan Winery & Resort
100 Rue Charlemagne Dr.
Braselton, GA 30517
(678) 425-0900
ChateauElan.com

 

Chefs for Seniors
(404) 914-7252
ChefsForSeniors.com

 

 

Habitat for Humanity
824 Memorial Dr. SE., Atlanta, GA 30316
(404) 223-5180
Habitat.org

 

iFLY
2778 Cobb Pkwy. SE., Atlanta, GA 30339
(678) 803-4359
IFlyWorld.com

 

Intown Salt Room
563 Memorial Dr. SE., Unit CU-A
Atlanta, GA 30312
(678) 974-7867
IntownSaltRoom.com

 

Lisa Washington - Health and Wellness Life Coach/Reiki Practitioner
(770) 598-6493
BtyliWellnessAndBeauty.com

 

Sips n Strokes
230 Hammond Dr., Bldg. 400
Sandy Springs, GA 30328
(404) 272-0156
p20SipsNStrokes.com

 

Treetop Quest
4770 N. Peachtree Rd.
Dunwoody, GA 30338
(770) 365-0356
TreetopQuest.com

 

Urban Explorers of Atlanta
245 N. Highland Ave. NE., Ste. 230-189
Atlanta, GA 30307
(678) 636-9310
UxAtl.com

 

Wednesday, 26 September 2018 20:45

Better Sex

By India Powell

Sex—and certainly the fun, freeing, and fulfilling kind—is typically thought of as the domain of the young. But once the fog of conditioned limiting perceptions is cleared out of the way, the exciting truth is revealed: Sex actually gets better with age.

Sex—and certainly the fun, freeing, and fulfilling kind—is typically thought of as the domain of the young. But once the fog of conditioned limiting perceptions is cleared out of the way, the exciting truth is revealed: Sex actually gets better with age.

An Upward Trend

Because youth can also come with preoccupations about appearance and the imagined perceptions of others, as well as the complicated layers of still budding emotional and spiritual identities, sex can be less enjoyable before age 40 than after. The saying, "youth is wasted on the young" certainly does not apply in this case, since many of the things that make sex most enjoyable are more easily tapped into with maturity.

Elaine Wilco, MA, LPC, founder of IntimacyAtlanta, is a therapist who helps couples reconnect with each other and their own sexuality. She says couples who are actively enjoying sex in their 70s actually report having greater satisfaction than earlier in life. This is because they learn to enjoy sex beyond the previous mental constraints and beyond the traditional physical perceptions of sex itself.

"They know how to enjoy each other in different ways, and that arousal is not just physical. They have learned to create more sexual pleasure by working together," she says. According to Wilco, there is an entire paradigm shift that can happen later anytime in life around sex. This shift expands the possibilities of how expansively sex can be enjoyed. The perceptions of physicality, self, family, priorities and more change dramatically with the metamorphosis that can happen later in life.

SB1A Very Healthy Sex Life

Urology and urologic laparoscopy specialist Scott D. Miller, MD, of WellStar Health System, explains that allowing declining hormone levels and other factors to detract from your sex life can become a vicious cycle. "While stress and depression can take away the desire to have sex, one of the benefits of an active sex life is that it can reduce stress and depression," Miller says.

Adding, "Sexual activity is healthy. There is no age where it is expected that we become sexually inactive. There are many forms of intimacy, and it is part of who we are as humans and couples."

It's All Sex

For men, Miller says, the drop in testosterone levels that occurs naturally and steadily with time can present challenges. Erectile functionality can become less dependable, which can create anxiety around the idea of having sex. This is especially true if the emphasis is primarily around penis-vagina intercourse.

"The 'performance' concept is a lot of pressure on men," Wilco says. Adding that the pressure to perform can cause men to withdraw from sex into themselves and feel like they have failed their partners, although most don't actually verbalize these feelings. This can lead to the partner feeling hurt or thinking the man no longer finds her attractive.

Another reason it can be important to expand the idea of what constitutes having sex is that women's bodies change physiologically after menopause. The thinning of the vaginal walls and reduced lubrication can lead to tearing and irritation. And because the vagina becomes spongier and extends during arousal, Wilco explains, artificial lubrication is not always enough. "There can be too much emphasis on intercourse and not enough on everything else," Wilco says. "Manual and oral sex are not just 'foreplay;' I call them 'outercourse,' which includes all forms of sex not restricted to intercourse."

SB2Even if there are health conditions that affect one's ability to have intercourse, such as cardiovascular problems, diabetes or hormonal issues, Miller says, adjustments through hormone replacement, oral medications or diet and exercise can help get things back on track. For those struggling with erectile dysfunction, Tariq Hakky, MD, of Advanced Urology suggests adopting healthy lifestyle changes, vacuum erection methods, penile prosthesis and more. When dealing with the aftereffects of a major health event, such as a heart attack, it's important to keep the expectation that sex will return in time, and to explore forms of intimacy beyond intercourse.

The Age Advantage

Miller points out that age can bring one very distinct physical advantage when it comes to sex. "Certain things, physically, we get better at with age. When we're younger, we may be faster and stronger, but when we are older we have lots of endurance," he says. He adds that later in life, certain stressors such as young children and demanding work are less of a concern and it's easier to relax and focus on enjoying the relationship and physical intimacy.

Beyond the Limits

Atlanta-based sex coach Haley Helveston, founder of Holistic Health with Haley, specializes in helping women reconnect with their sexuality. She says that clear communication and a deeper understanding of our own bodies are the keys to sex getting better as we get older.

"Sex and pleasure are limitless," Helveston says. "There is a life force energy in sexuality that many don't tap into. It can be a spiritual awakening and life-changing experience to discover the various types of orgasms that are possible."

Learning about using meditation and breathing techniques before and during sex can greatly deepen the experience, especially since many women require a longer sexual experience in order to have an orgasm. Sex is a sacred experience and much more pleasurable when treated as such. Exploring tantric breathing techniques can help in discovering the depths of the full spirit-body-mind sexual experience.

It is also crucial at any age, Helveston says, that a woman knows her own body very well. "Many women assume the guy is going to know what to do," she says, "but all bodies are different. A woman needs to know how to please herself."

Clearing the Negativity

Wilco says the deeper sense of inner connection within oneself that can happen with age also enhances the potential for a more enjoyable sex life. "So many women deny themselves being comfortable sexually earlier in life because of what they believe they 'should' look like. If a sexual response is based on appearance, then it's going to decline with age," she points out.

As both women and men clear away the subconscious blocks, negativity and "shoulds/shouldn'ts" around sex, it opens up endless possibilities for continued enjoyment and expansion together. "Sex should get better as you get older," Helveston says. "Don't believe the negative perception that it's going to be bad and boring. You get to constantly evolve and grow yourself sexually."

Resources:
Advanced Urology, UrologyGeorgia.com
Holistic Health with Haley HolisticHealthWithHaley.com
IntimacyAtlanta, IntimacyAtlanta.com
WellStar Health System, WellStar.org

 

Wednesday, 26 September 2018 20:39

Rethinking Big Pharma

How questioning the role of prescriptions in medicine can lead to true health

 

 

By Jennifer Colosimo

 

Never before have Americans taken so much medicine. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration, in 2014, over one million people took a trip to the emergency room due to adverse drug effects. About 124,000 of them died. Roughly half of those deaths could have been prevented.

P1With American society so conditioned to take a pill for whatever ails us, we've found ourselves in the middle of a serious drug crisis. And we're still not feeling any better. "We're prescribing a lot more medications than we need. When it comes to pain medications, for example, we [the United States] take over 80 percent of some of the world's opioids (like hydrocodone and oxycodone)," says Sanjay Gupta, MD, faculty neurosurgeon at The Emory Clinic and chief medical correspondent for CNN.

The good news is that there's a shift happening right now, inspiring patients to question the prescriptions they're given and explore other options to start taking control of their health. With the right knowledge, it'll require our society to view medicine in a new light, one that asks doctors to combine the best of the conventional methods we've used to get better for years, with natural, practical options that get to the root of the issue—a harmonious alternative to help shape a healthier future ... one that's looking bright.

Why a Pill Isn't a Panacea

SB1We take a lot of medicine. There's a pill for aches and pains, high cholesterol, diabetes, you name it; but it's not enough anymore, as the risks include addiction, vitamin deficiencies, and the obvious fact that we're simply masking what may actually be wrong with our body. Especially for aging patients, the habit is starting to catch up.

In many cases—infections, heart attacks, a stroke, e.g.,—it's warranted, but when 4,468,929,929 prescriptions were filled by Americans in 2016, the necessity gets a little thin.

"Doctors, unfortunately, have a limited amount of time to spend with their patients, so their answer to any ailment is to prescribe a medication," says Dana Neacsu, MD, owner of Medical Creations Integrative Medicine in Sandy Springs. "Not only should you try to understand why you are prescribed a drug but also question the use, especially when it is not accompanied by lifestyle changes meant to address the underlying cause."

P2Other questions to ask your healthcare provider include asking if the drug is known to cause major adverse reactions, if you've been on a medication for too long, if adding another prescription is too many, and if what you're taking puts you in danger of a negative drug interaction.

"We question our kids' schools, we want to know about our grocery stores and things around our lives. We should be treating our body and the things we put into it the same way," says Gupta.

Honing in on Your Healthcare Options

Knowing you can potentially say no to most medications, you can start exploring the other options that exist. And the best alternative isn't cold turkey. In fact, something called integrative medicine takes the best from both worlds to provide patients the best possible outcome.

Tasneem Bhatia (Dr. Taz), MD, founder of CentreSpringMD, explains the growing popularity of this approach. "Patients want more from their healthcare providers in terms of time and substance and functional medicine fills that void and provides solutions that are not always pharmaceutical based." Integrated medicine combines state-of-the-art conventional medical treatments, like medications, surgeries, etc. with other, natural therapies like acupuncture, energy healing SB2techniques, supplement protocols, lifestyle changes, etc. that are carefully selected and shown to be safe and effective. Blending conventional and alternative medicines also utilizes medical technology, but uses the results to create a personalized approach for each patient, a plan based in techniques and choices that appeal to them and work for their lifestyle and personality.

"Integrative medicine is not antimedication, but rather opposed to just Band-Aiding a symptom with drugs. It focuses on the whole human being—the body, mind, spirit and involvement in the community," says Neacsu. In addition, alternative medicine practices can be cheaper for patients, and can prevent significant (read: expensive), chronic diseases in the future. Gupta says, "The fact that we can actually do things that don't require medications, that don't require procedures to improve our health, they're just based on our own knowledge of our body and our own holistic approach to our body can not only make a difference—it can make a huge difference."

"I usually tell this story about one of my patients—a lovely lady in her mid-60s who came to see me searching for a hormone replacement protocol because she was tired, and lots of her girlfriends were on hormone replacement therapy," says Neacsu. "She felt like that was the answer. I sat down with her and we talked about everything going on and it was clear to me from the beginning that this was more than just a hormonal imbalance. In fact, I told her we are going to start with a very conventional approach, testing her hemoglobin levels."

P3The short story was a diagnosis of iron deficiency anemia, which worried Neacsu, because at this age that usually indicates something else is wrong.

"I picked up the phone and called her primary doctor who quickly arranged further testing, which showed she had a huge polyp in her stomach and she was losing blood from that," she says. "This was quickly taken care of by a gastroenterologist, and luckily was benign. She came back to me soon after the surgery and we worked together on finding the right supplements for her body, including iron. We worked on balancing her hormonal and adrenal glands, which were taxed after all of these events. We tested her for [other] vitamin deficiencies and discovered some additional problems and we fixed those too."

Neacsu says that together, they are working on preventing other problems like cholesterol imbalance and memory decline from occurring in the future. Today, her patient is doing great and this is still one of Neacsu's favorite stories, because in her opinion, it's the best example of what medicine should be like in this era.

Maximizing Your Medication

When it comes to the role patients have to play in taking their health SB3in their own hands, Gupta says this, "I am one of these doctors who thinks that ultimately, the patient is in charge. The patient is empowered. Nothing that I do is going to work unless the patient actually wants to make these changes themselves." He adds, "A majority, of chronic disease in this country is lifestyle induced. We know that relatively simple changes that don't require you to turn your world upside down can make a huge difference. We often think of the good lifestyle changes such as eating right, exercising, getting enough rest as things that will help you in the future, but the reality is that those things can not only improve your health, but make you feel better right now."

Neacsu notes, "Every patient needs to understand how addressing lifestyle changes will lead to a more sustainable result, although it will not be as quick as with pills. There are so many excuses, but the truth is by not taking care of the current health issue now, one will eventually end up in a worse situation."

P4She reminds patients, "See it as an investment and an education, probably the most important investment of your life."

Adding Cannabidiol (CBD) to Your Healthcare Options

Craig Fabel, president of Green Roads, a company that manufactures and distributes products made with cannabidiol (CBD) as a natural alternative to pharmaceuticals is excited about what he is hearing from their customers. He says, "Over the last 10 years in the U.S., there has been a growing epidemic of abuse and overdoses involving opioid painkillers. Growing sources of research are confirming CBD as an effective natural alternative to prescription painkillers."

CBD can be used to treat chronic pain, neurodegenerative diseases, neuropathic pain, autoimmune diseases, anxiety, depression, stress, post-traumatic stress disorder, skin allergies, migraines and more. But that's not even the best news. Research shows using CBD can actually be good for you.

SB4"When someone is addicted to opioids, there are measurable changes that have occurred in their brain, the parts of their brain that are responsible for judgment, for learning, and for memory have been affected by that and that's part of what makes it a brain disease," says Gupta. "We know that CBD actually crosses the blood-brain barrier and can help heal those parts of the brain that have been damaged by opioids."

It also helps relieve opioid withdrawal symptoms and it's cutting down on the number of opioids people consume, because they're taking medical marijuana for their pain instead. Less opioids means less opioid prescriptions and fewer overdose deaths—a significant fact when tens of thousands of people die every year from opioid overdose in the U.S.

Changing the CBD Perception to End the Opioid Crisis

Fabel, whose Green RoadsFamily Program supports over 100 families through product sponsorship and various nonprofits says, "It is inspiring every day to come to work and hear stories of relief, from children with epilepsy to veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder."

"The biggest misconception about medical marijuana is that [people] don't think of it as a medicine," says Gupta. "They think of it as just a substance that you have to smoke to get high. It's important to know that it's a nonpsychoactive substance and you don't have to inhale it. It does have medicinal properties and we know that not only can it work as a medicine, but it can work oftentimes when nothing else has."

"Recently, we've had the first cannabis-based drug [Epidiolex] approved by the FDA," Gupta adds. "The FDA is saying, 'Hey, there's a cannabis-based drug that we've approved.' At the same time, in this country, they're saying it has no medicinal benefit. You can't say both at the same time, and yet here we are."

Green Roads has taken a leadership role in the industry by supporting research and development, to improve products and gain consistent results for customers. They are partnering with well-respected academic institutions to work with legislation to protect consumers from poor quality products in the marketplace.

"I have the opportunity to be part of something bigger than all of us, to change lives and enable positive change across the world," says Fabel. "Every day at Green Roads we get to help people live longer, stronger, better, healthier lives and we are doing it the right way, the safe way."

Resources:
CentreSpringMD, CentreSpringMD.com
CNN, CNN.com
Green Roads, GreenRoadsWorld.com
Medical Creations Integrative Medicine, MCIMAtlanta.com

 

Wednesday, 26 September 2018 20:08

Deeper Than The Diagnosis

The mental, spiritual, and emotional
journey of breast cancer

 

 

By Karon Warren

 

Receiving a breast cancer diagnosis can be devastating for patients. While there is an almost immediate focus on how severe the cancer is and what treatment options are available to eliminate it, the diagnosis calls for much more than just medicinal treatment. "Being diagnosed with and treated for breast cancer can take a toll on a person: body, mind and spirit," says Emily Beard, women's oncology program coordinator at Northside Hospital Cancer Institute in Atlanta. "In addition to the obvious fear and physical effects of treatment come a lot of other concerns, which vary from person to person."

SB1Stress over finances, worries for family members, effects on body image, and coming face-to-face with one's own mortality are just a few of the many concerns that could and do arise following a breast cancer diagnosis. As a result, patients need much more than just medical treatment; they need palliative care that addresses these other issues. Think mental and emotional support, physical exercise, nutrition, and body image concerns.

When addressing these additional matters as part of the patient's overall treatment plan, the benefits can be immense. "Exercise is medicine, healthy eating can aid in healing, and acknowledging and processing the feelings associated with this journey supports and empowers the survivor to tap into strengths some never knew they had," says Jennifer Kuca Lavoie, director of wellness, worklife and fitness for Piedmont Healthcare in Atlanta. "This equals control during unsettling times."

In recent years, there has been a shift in the medical community wherein treatment for breast cancer patients now includes these additional aspects of care. In fact, after the initial diagnosis, many facilities and doctors now include an assessment to evaluate a patient's mental and emotional well-being, their nutritional and physical exercise habits, their stress levels, and more in order to better serve the patient.

These evaluations go a long way in assisting medical professionals with addressing patients' other needs beyond just cancer treatment. When a need is identified, patients can be directed to the appropriate services.

Mental and Emotional Assistance

Because a breast cancer diagnosis can spark a wide range of emotions, talking with someone who understands their situation can be a huge comfort for breast cancer patients. "Psychosocial health encompasses the mental, emotional, social and spiritual dimensions of what it means to be healthy," says Cati Diamond Stone, executive director of Susan G. Komen Greater Atlanta. "We encourage patients to talk about their feelings with a trusted source, which could be a family member, someone from their faith-based organization or a trained counselor."

While engaging with others in similar situations can be helpful, for some patients it may be best to take it one step further and speak with a psychologist or therapist. "We perform a distress screening at the initial diagnosis or first treatment," says Jennifer Kilkus, PhD, a clinical psychologist with the WellStar Cancer Survivorship & Support Department at Kennestone Hospital in Marietta.

If that screening identifies a high level of anxiety, stress or depression, the patient could receive a referral for a psychologist or therapist. However, because every patient is different, therapy may not be necessary. "Some patients may need to see a therapist or psychologist, while others manage well with the help of support groups or by relying on family and friends," Kilkus says. "Our goal is to get patients the right level of care at the right time in their treatment."

SB2Support Groups

Many hospitals, cancer centers and other medical facilities offer various support groups where breast cancer patients can seek out communal interaction with other patients. Some of these groups may be as simple as gathering together to talk out their different situations. Others, though, may take it a step further, involving therapies such as music, the arts or even equine-assisted therapy.

For example, Feel Beautiful Today is a nonprofit that brings free "Arts in Health" programs to cancer patients at treatment centers around the city. "We use the arts as a tool to socially connect and encourage," says Biviana Franco, founder and CEO of Feel Beautiful Today in Roswell. "Artistic tasks help patients understand and express themselves and hopefully lead them to an improved quality of life. We want to remind them of the person they still are despite the cancer diagnosis."

Physical Exercise

Staying active during breast cancer treatment can go a long way in boosting the immune system, reducing stress, improving sleep or increasing emotional well-being. Although breast cancer patients may not be able to exercise at the same level they did prior to their diagnosis, physical activity is possible.

Staying active can be as simple as taking a walk or attending a yoga class. "There is proof [from the American Society of Clinical Oncology] that for women who suffer from depression and anxiety, yoga and meditation are beneficial," says Anita Johnson, MD, FACS, breast surgical oncologist at Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Atlanta.

Nutrition

When going through chemotherapy and radiation to treat breast cancer, patients may experience a number of diet-related side effects, including loss of appetite, a change in taste buds, and weight loss. To address these potential issues, many medical facilities offer dietitian services.

"For me, this meant meeting with a nutritionist at my doctor's office to learn more about how to eat healthy foods that will support my treatment," says Stone, who is also a breast cancer survivor.

Body Image

One struggle many breast cancer patients face is with their body image. With the possibility of losing their hair, dealing with a gaunt appearance and especially dealing with the aftereffects of a mastectomy, keeping their self-esteem at a high level could be difficult. That's why there are services that address this concern.

For instance, at the Cancer Support Center, housed at the Cancer Institute at Gwinnett Medical Center (GMC) in Lawrenceville, patients can attend the "Look Good Feel Better" class, a resource from the American Cancer Society.

"We bring patients in, do their makeup through the Look Good Feel Better class, and a patient navigator based at GMC from the American Cancer Society can help them try on free wigs," says Amy McEachin, RN, BSN OCN, oncology support clinic manager at Gwinnett Medical Center Cancer Institute.

At One Journey Together - A Cancer and Healing Boutique in Alpharetta, founder Lisa Gibson, also a breast cancer survivor, has brought together salon and spa services, custom wigs, prosthetics, compression garments and other complementary therapies to help cancer patients address their body image concerns.

For example, many patients are told they should not receive skin and nail treatments at traditional salons and spas because of their compromised immune system. However, at One Journey Together, they are specially trained to assist these patients with these services. "We offer our patients a safe, clean and comfortable environment where they can still receive the services they are used to getting with qualified professionals that understand the unique needs of the cancer patient," says esthetician Caitlyn Smith.

Finding Coverage

Receiving this multitude of services sounds easy given there are so many providers available in the Atlanta area; however, the costs could be prohibitive for many patients. For psychological and mental treatment, it is possible health insurance may cover those appointments if the policy contains a mental or behavioral provision.

In addition, many of the support services like yoga classes, support groups and meetings with dietitians may be free or very low-cost at area medical centers and hospitals. For instance, Lavoie says that Chapman Cancer Wellness at Piedmont Healthcare offers comprehensive programs including exercise programs for women with breast cancer at no charge to the patients and their family members. WellStar also offers many support services for free.

Local nonprofits such as TurningPoint Breast Cancer Rehabilitation can also be an option for low-cost services and even financial assistance. The main mission of The Eric R. Beverly Family Foundation is to improve the survival rates of lower income breast cancer patients by providing grants for insurance co-pays, prescription costs, transportation to and from treatment, and basic living necessities such as rent, utilities and groceries.

In the last 10 years, there has been a major shift to extend breast cancer treatment beyond just treating the disease, and this shift will continue going forward. "Cancer centers and hospitals are now more fully integrating services like nutrition and fitness counseling, mental health services and other palliative care," Stone says. "It's been a shift in the approach, and it is positively impacting the overall treatment plan and outcomes."

Resources:
Cancer Treatment Centers of America, CancerCenter.com
The Eric R. Beverly Family Foundation, BeverlyFamilyFoundation.org
Feel Beautiful Today, FeelBeautifulToday.org
Gwinnett Medical Center Cancer Institute, GwinnettMedicalCenter.org
Northside Hospital Cancer Institute, Northside.com/CancerInstitute
One Journey Together - A Cancer and Healing Boutique OneJourneyTogether.net
Piedmont Healthcare, Piedmont.org
Susan G. Komen Greater Atlanta, KomenAtlanta.org
TurningPoint Breast Cancer Rehabilitation, MyTurningPoint.org
WellStar Kennestone Hospital, WellStar.org

 

Wednesday, 26 September 2018 20:00

My Best Self: Ashley Lorenzo

Yoga is more than a means of movement for Ashley Lorenzo. It is a chance to connect and center one's self and step back into the world as a more conscious member of society. Her classes are welcoming, inclusive and highly personal.

By Susan Finch

Between field hockey and cross-country running, Ashley Lorenzo was always active growing up. But a class at Five Points Yoga (she still keeps in touch with her first instructor) in Athens, Georgia, nearly a decade ago changed her life in a way no other form of fitness had before. "There was something almost ritualistic about the practice that made me want to live with more integrity and an open heart," Lorenzo says. Today, the E-RYT 200 and 500 HR-certified yoga instructor has over 1,500 hours of instruction under her belt and can be found leading classes at YogaWorks and New Realm Brewing, teaching private 60-minute lessons (Spanx founder Sara Blakely is a fan), and jet-setting to Europe for enchanting yogi retreats.

How did you discover yoga? While I've always been very active and in love with movement, it wasn't until I finally let a good friend drag me to yoga for the first time that I knew it was meant for me. It provided me with a guided sense of discipline and paved the way for a healthier lifestyle. It was the one place where I was able to focus on my breath, become quiet and gain clarity. It helped me to step back into the world from a more centered and authentic place.

How do you use a mix of alignment-based poses, meditation and breath work to help your students cultivate greater awareness in the physical body and beyond? My approach to teaching yoga is to keep things simple, and that always begins with the breath. While alignment is a huge focal point in my teaching, I don't care if people can touch their toes or even get their feet behind their head. My job is to help people pay attention and the yoga practice forces you to expand your awareness to multiple points at one time. This is what is so special and sneaky about the way the practice works. It asks that you are truly present in the moment.

What are your private lessons like? My private lessons are much more intimate. This type of setting provides an opportunity for me to really understand a client and their physiology. Together, we work on gaining greater body awareness so that the practice can become as therapeutic as possible and shapes to fit their needs.

What's your favorite inspirational quote? "You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don't make money your goal. Instead, pursue the things you love doing and then do them so well that people can't take their eyes off of you." —Dr. Maya Angelou

Tell us one of the funniest things that's ever happened to you. I was mistaken for Shakira at the airport recently and gave her autograph to a small group of girls.

What do you like to do for fun? I love to travel and see live music. When I'm in Atlanta, I spend most of my weekends in my painting studio. If I'm not there, you can find me with my friends or spending time outdoors.

Who helps you be your best self? I'm very mindful of my blessings and am lucky to have such strong support from close friends and family. They are always there for me, hold me accountable, encourage me to share what I love, and above all, just want me to be happy. I also love going to bartaco, grabbing a Grounded smoothie with greens from Kale Me Crazy, and shopping at Ponce City Market.

To find out more about Ashley Lorenzo and her yoga classes, visit AshleyLorenzo.com.

 

«StartPrev12345678910NextEnd»
Page 1 of 46