Author Archives: thedoctorisin

Tips to support injury recovery over the summer

I ran across this article on the Thorne Research website and thought it would be helpful to my patients and readers.

Ah…summer! The summer months offer warmer temperatures, longer daylight hours, and more opportunities for outdoor training and exercise. But bummer — this time of year also brings increased risk of strains, sprains, fractures, and heat-related injuries.[1]

Research indicates there are psychological and physiological factors associated with injury prevention and recovery. Understanding these factors and remembering the basics will lead to better outcomes with your clients.


1. Fatigue and Stress 101

Stress and fatigue are both directly related to the prevention of injury and recovery from injury. It’s often a chicken-and-egg syndrome where one begets the other.

Managing stress before injury: Overtraining syndrome. Overtraining syndrome can occur with every level of athlete. Overtraining syndrome affects the athlete mentally and physically and when not addressed can lead to serious injury.

Overtraining syndrome can produce mood disturbances that include depression, anxiety, anger, and irritability. Overtraining can also result in overall fatigue, decreased energy, changes in sleep patterns, and changes in appetite.[2]

Managing stress after injury. Stress management is another key area for successful rehabilitation after injury. Stress management is a crucial component to recovery, especially in cases where the athlete is experiencing distress during the rehabilitation process.

Current research indicates that athletes who undergo stress management, including relaxation and imagery sessions, have less anxiety and better rehab outcomes. In addition, athletes who participate in stress management techniques have higher levels of overall positive mood and perceived readiness to return to their sport.[3]

2. Proper Nutrition Support 101

Adequate hydration. Hydration for every athlete in every environment is obviously a no-brainer; this is especially true in warmer climates. Heat-related injuries are most often due to dehydration and electrolyte imbalance.[4]  Sports drinks loaded with sugar and energy drinks that contain caffeine increase the risk of dehydration. Adequate and proper ratios of sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium are essential to staying hydrated.

Dietary protein. Muscle atrophy usually occurs with conditions such as sarcopenia, severe burns, and cachexia. But muscle atrophy is also common in the injured athlete who is immobilized and inactive. During injury and immobilization negative protein balance can occur. Protein balance is the ratio of muscle protein breakdown and the rate of muscle protein synthesis. When injury and immobilization occurs the injured area experiences decreased myofibrillar protein synthesis, which results in atrophy. According to Leech and Andrew, mitigating atrophy requires eating 20-25 grams of highly biological protein at each meal and distributing protein intake throughout the day.[5]

Essential Fatty Acids.  In cases of serious injury where immobilization is prolonged, anabolic resistance can occur, and protein consumption alone is not enough. Blown ACL’s, dislocations, and severe fractures can result in anabolic resistance, the response resistance of the myofibriliar proteins to amino acids.[5]

Overcoming anabolic resistance can be challenging; however, preliminary research indicates that omega-3 fatty acids can mitigate muscle loss due to injury and immobilization. Daily doses of 1.86 grams of EPA and 1.50 grams of DHA have been shown to increase muscle protein anabolic response in healthy young and middle-aged adults. Although the exact biochemistry and mechanism of action remain unknown, theoretically these results could be the result of the known anti-inflammatory benefits of essential fatty acids.[5]

Click here to find out more about approved nutritional supplements to support performance and recovery.

Written by Melanie Sims Henning, MS, PsyD, for Thorne Research


[1] PR, N. (2013, July 16). Kessler Institute Offers Five Cool Tips for Staying Safe in the Summer Heat. PR Newswire US.

[2] Liederbach M, Schanfein L, Kremenic I. What is known about the effect of fatigue on injury occurrence among dancers? Journal of Dance Medicine & Science 2013;17(3);101-108.

[3] Walsh A. The relaxation response: A strategy to address stress. International Journal of Athletic Therapy & Training 2011:16(2);20-23.

[4] Pocecco E, Ruedl G, Stankovic N, et al. Injuries in judo: a systematic literature review including suggestions for prevention. British Journal of Sports Medicine 2013:47(18);1139-1143.

[5] Leech J, Andrew K. The emerging prominence of nutrition in injury management. Sport Health 2013:31(1);57-61.

Dr. Nancy Scheinost,
Rheumatology of Brazos Valley


Weight Loss

Do you need to lose 10 pounds or more?

Then I am here to challenge you to adopt a new lifestyle for the next 7 days.

What does that mean?

  • It means no soda’s
  • NO processed food of any kind
  • NO food out of a box (even if it says Organic)

Bottom line is:

  • If God made it, you can eat it
  • If man made it, you can’t

Why you ask?

Because all the preservatives, additives, flavorings, and dyes act as TOXINS to your body.

You are probably thinking how?

These compounds aren’t natural and therefore get stored in your fat cells.  It is your body’s natural defense mechanism to putting things in your body that aren’t supposed to be there.  Once they are in the fat cell, then the body’s natural response is to make more and bigger fat cells.  In other words, “the solution to pollution is dilution”!

The body’s solution to pollution, (the chemicals from all the things listed above), is to dilute the chemicals by adding more fat to the cells that contain the pollutants.  That’s pretty disgusting if you stop and think about it, right?

For the next 7 days I challenge you to eat whole foods.  If you can’t commit to 7 days, try it for at least 3 days.  You will be absolutely amazed how good you will feel!

Let me know how this worked for you!

To a better you,
Dr. Nancy
Rheumatology of Brazos Valley

Sleep: What you need to know

How much sleep is the right amount?  Seven hours, (7), is the magic number.  When should you sleep?  You should try to be in bed by 10PM.  The hours from 10PM to 2AM are when your body does most of its’ self repair work, so timing is very important!

Tips for better sleep:

  • Invest in a great pillow
  • Set an alarm for 30 minutes before bed & turn down all the lights
  • If you watch TV, or are on your iPad, phone, tablet, or computer, invest in a pair of Gunnars.  They are yellow glasses that block blue light.  Blue light depletes melatonin, which is your sleep hormone.
  • Don’t eat after 8PM.  Your pancreas goes to sleep around 8PM, so eating after 8PM means the calories will be stored as fat.  If you need a nighttime snack because of low blood sugar, try a tablespoon of almond butter.  It contains protein and good fat to help with the low blood sugar in the middle of the night.
  • Don’t do anything stressful one hour before bed.  This includes paying bills, doing work, playing video games and watching violent TV shows.
  • Avoid exercise after 7PM.  People who have trouble sleeping should exercise in the morning if at all possible.  Exercising after 7PM stimulates your sympathetic nervous system which prevents you from relaxing.
  • Avoid caffeine 6 to 8 hours before bedtime, as it has a half-life of 8 hours.
  • The same goes for chocolate.  Chocolate contains caffeine.
  • Try to go to bed at the same time every night.
  • Run to the sun!  In the morning throw all your shutters, blinds, or curtains, and turn on bright lights. This will stimulate cortisol production and help you wake up.
  • Avoid alcohol 2 hours before going to bed.  Alcohol interferes with REM sleep, and will leave you with unrefreshed sleep.
  • Get a Spoonk.  It is an acupressure mat that you lay on to stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system, which promotes sleep.  It is also helpful with chronic pain, arthritis, and Fibromyalgia.
  • Don’t try to do all of these at once.  Pick one or two that seem easy and add one more in a few days.

Here’s hoping you get a good nights’ rest!

Dr.Nancy Scheinost
Rheumatology of Brazos Valley

Eat Fat, Get Thin!

Hey everyone.  Check our Dr. Mark Hyman’s new book, Eat Fat, Get Thin!  It tells the real truth about fat.  Eating fat, (the right kind of course), increases weight loss, while eating sugar and “low fat” will make you fatter.  This book contains some very sound advice that we all should pay more attention to.

eatfatgetthinGet your copy today!

If you have any questions, I am here, ready and willing to help.

Dr. Nancy Scheinost
Rheumatology of Brazos Valley