Prostate Cancer and Your Pelvic Floor

Yes, men do have a pelvic floor too! It is mostly believed that only women experience pelvic floor issues following childbirth. However, men can be affected by pelvic floor conditions as well, most commonly incontinence. It is reported that more than two thirds of men do not discuss the issue of incontinence with their GP with more than 30 per cent of them affected.

According to the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia, prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men with over 20 000 new cases diagnosed nationally per year. Following prostate surgery (prostatectomy or TURP) urinary incontinence, or bladder weakness is one of the most common symptoms men have due to the removal of the prostate. During the recovery process men often find this the biggest challenge to cope with.

Full bladder control gradually returns over time and most men usually fully recover within six to twelve months, in conjunction with using specific pelvic floor exercises. Ideally pelvic floor exercises should be started four to six weeks before surgery and continue post surgery under the care of a Pelvic Health Physiotherapist.

Common problems affecting men that could be successfully treated by a Pelvic Health Physiotherapist includes:

- Incontinence following prostate surgery
- Erectile dysfunction after prostate surgery
- After dribble
- Peyronie's disease
- Bowel conditions
- Pelvic floor muscles and pelvic pain

If you are having prostate surgery or do have any questions, please make an appointment to see a Pelvic Health Physiotherapist.

Resources:

1. https://www.continence.org.au

2. http://www.prostate.org.au

3. https://www.physiotherapy.asn.au/APAWCM/Advocacy/Campaigns/APA_Mens_Health.aspx

Exercising Right for Prostate Cancer

This month is Prostate Cancer awareness month. Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed form of cancer in men in Australia, with almost 20,000 diagnoses each year.

What is Prostate cancer?

Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in males in Australia. It occurs when abnormal cells develop in the prostate. Sometimes these abnormal cells can multiply and spread into surrounding or distant tissue in the body.

How can exercise help?

As well as the general benefits exercise has on health and well-being, there are specific benefits to men with prostate cancer who are currently undergoing treatment or have done so in the past.

Men with prostate cancer currently on a hormone therapy may experience numerous side effects including:

  • Reduced bone mineral density

  • Reduced muscle mass

  • Fatigue

  • Increased cholesterol levels: which can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease

  • Feelings of depression or anxiety

Appropriately prescribed exercise is a great way to help manage these side effects.

What type of exercise is best?

It is recommended that men perform a combination of both aerobic and resistance exercises. This will help combat a loss of muscle mass or bone density that may occur during treatment, assist in managing fatigue, decrease cardiovascular risk factors like increased cholesterol and assist in managing feelings of depression or anxiety that may arise.

Males that have undergone radical prostectomy as part of their treatment, might also be recommended to complete additional pelvic floor exercises.

Are there any exercise considerations?

Risk of bone fracture, is increased with hormone therapy or if cancer has spread to the bones. Therefore, it is important to get guidance on what exercise is safe and appropriate for you from an Accredited Exercise Physiologist who has experience working with men who have prostate cancer.

For more information on how we can help, contact us on 8969 6300 or info@bblifestyleclinic.com.au

Fighting Parkinson's Disease

What is Parkinson’s Disease?
Parkinson’s Disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that affects the dopamine producing neurons in the brain. It is characterized by a resting tremor, slowness of movements, rigidity, gait disturbance and postural instability.

How Can Exercise Help?
Exercise has been shown to improve symptoms and slow the progression of Parkinson’s Disease. It is especially effective if introduced at an early stage after diagnosis. The dopaminergic neurons in the brain are highly responsive to exercise, meaning that exercise can stimulate dopamine synthesis and therefore reduce the presence of symptoms.

Exercise can improve:

  • Gait
  • Balance
  • Tremors
  • Flexibility
  • Grip strength
  • Motor coordination
  • Mental health
  • Quality of life

Participating in a structured individualized exercise program also allows the individual to play an active role in their management plan, giving back some power and control that many feel they lose after diagnosis.

What Type of Exercise is Best?
There is no one type of exercise that will work for everyone with Parkinson’s Disease. This is as there are many different signs, symptoms and challenges, with the ability for individuals to present quite differently.

Resistance Exercise
Performing resistance exercises that improve lower limb muscle mass and strength can help improve balance, walking stride length, speed and distance.

Aerobic Exercise
Aerobic exercise will improve your heart and lung function, making activities of daily living easier and more sustainable in the long term. Treadmill walking has been shown to have immediate and long-term benefits on gait in individuals with Parkinson’s Disease. Cycling has also been shown to reduce muscle rigidity and slowed movements.

Dual-Tasking Exercise
Individuals with Parkinson’s Disease often have difficulty performing two tasks at once. This is especially the case when walking as gait patterns are already altered with Parkinson’s Disease. BY incorporating dual-tasking elements into a program, it has been shown to improve gait velocity, stride length and balance.

The following types of exercise have also shown to have benefits:

  • Balance
  • Mobility
  • Exercises that promote attention and learning
  • High intensity aerobic exercise
  • Exercises that challenge the individual to change tempo, direction or activity

Are There Any Exercise Considerations?
Everyone with Parkinson’s Disease can present with a variety of symptoms or areas of concern. So it is important to seek the right advice when beginning an exercise program. Get in contact with an Exercise Physiologist who has experience working with individuals who have Parkinson’s Disease and they will help tailor a program to you.

For more information on how we can help, contact us on 8969 6300 or info@bblifestyleclinic.com.au

Healthy Dinners for Diabetes

Our awesome Dietitian Aimee from our Cremorne clinic takes us through how to prepare easy healthy dinners for someone with Diabetes.

Struggling to put together a well-balanced meal at dinnertime for you or a family member who has Diabetes? This quick article will assist you in maintaining stable blood sugar levels, a healthy weight and maximum food satisfaction and enjoyment at dinner!

Dinner time can be challenging when we get home from an exhausting day. The last thing we want to think about is “What’s for Dinner”? – Sound familiar? Read on.

WHY? Well if your goal is to maintain or lose some weight to help control your diabetes then choosing a healthy, well-balanced meal is important to ensure extra kilojoules, sugar and fat are not creeping into your last main meal of the day.

Diabetes in a Nutshell – what is happening in your body!

Diabetes is when high levels of glucose circulate within the blood. When we consume carbohydrate-containing foods, our body breaks it down into glucose (sugar). The presence of glucose triggers the release of insulin, a hormone helping to reduce glucose levels in the blood. When the pancreas is unable to produce enough insulin or insulin doesn’t work as effectively, diabetes arises. Without adequate insulin, glucose in the blood builds up and can increase short and long-term health risks.

Type 1 – When the pancreas cannot produce insulin due to the body’s immune system damaging the cells that usually make insulin, therefore insulin must be replaced in order to manage blood sugar levels.  

Type 2 – Usually a result of either insulin resistance where the pancreas is supplying insulin, however the cells are resisting the insulin, compromising the uptake of glucose for energy and or over time the pancreas can become overworked and fails to produce adequate insulin to glucose ratio.

To achieve a healthy balanced dinner, having a few handy kitchen supplies is important so you can make a quick, nutritious and delicious meal that ticks all the boxes and keeps your blood sugar levels in check.

Low Starch Vegetables – a variety of colours helps you to achieve a balance of micronutrients & fibre!
Fill half your plate with an array of low starch vegetables. Some convenient options:

  • Birds Eye steam fresh bags or frozen stir fry mix
  • Fine cut coleslaw; spinach, rocket, kale leaves pack, stir fry rainbow veggies à
  • Spiralized zucchini or cauliflower and broccoli steam “rice” packs

High Fibre Carbohydrates – encourage a slow release of blood sugar and promote increased fullness!
Fill ¼ of your plate. Some convenient options:

  • Lentils, freekah, beans superblend (see image to right à)
  • Brown/long grain rice or quinoa microwaveable packs
  • Spiralized sweet potato noodle packs or birds eye frozen oven roast bag

Lean Protein – broken down slowly, providing long-lasting energy
Fill the other ¼ of your plate. Some convenient options:

  • BBQ chicken (skin and stuffing removed) à keep in an airtight container for a few days’ supply
  • Birds Eye steam frozen fish /Atlantic salmon or canned tuna and salmon or versatile eggs!

Healthy Fat – promotes a healthy heart and has anti-inflammatory effects
Enjoy adding a thumb size of avocado, nuts, seeds or olives to your salads & veggies.

 Now putting it all together - Inspired Buddha or Burrito Bowls

Step One: add a high fibre, slow-releasing source of carbohydrate i.e. ½ cup beans or brown rice as pictured.
Step Two: add lean protein including 150g fish or prawns, 120g poultry, two boiled eggs or 100g lean heart-smart minced beef or pork meat
Step Three: add 2-3 cups of varied low starch vegetables including broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, mushrooms, capsicum, green beans, carrots, cherry tomatoes, cabbage, baby beetroot, bok choy, zucchini and the list goes on!
Step Four: include some heart-healthy fats including ¼ avocado, 1 tbsp. of olive oil, 10 olives or a sprinkle of nuts or seeds.
Step Five: Enjoy, take your time and appreciate the colours and flavours

Remember that the AMOUNT of carbohydrate is going to be very individual and you should check in with a friendly local dietitian to set a collaborative plan. You can book in here http://bodyfusion.com.au/contact-us/ or read more about our dietitians here: http://bodyfusion.com.au/about-our-dietitian/

Wishing you some delicious and healthy dinners!

Dumbbells for Diabetes

This month saw National Diabetes week from 8th-14th July, with the focus of this year’s campaign on early detection and treatment for all types of Diabetes.  We all know that Diabetes is becoming an increasingly common diagnosis, but what does it actually mean?

What is Type 2 Diabetes?

Type 2 Diabetes occur when the pancreas in the body can’t make enough insulin and the body’s cell can’t respond effectively to the insulin that is produced, causing high blood glucose levels (or high blood sugar levels).

Did you know that Diabetes is:
-        The leading cause of blindness in adults
-        The leading cause of kidney failure
-        The leading cause of preventable limb amputations
-        Increases the risk of heart attacks and stroke by up to 4 times!

What Can You Do?

There is mounting evidence that shows us that you can reduce the risk of developing Diabetes, but also help manage the effects of Type 2 Diabetes through lifestyle factors: diet and exercise!

It is recommended that you perform both aerobic and resistance exercises. This may sound really complicated, but its simpler than you think.

Aerobic exercise uses large muscle groups in a rhythmic nature and is sustained for at least 10 minutes or more. For example:
Walking, running, swimming, cycling, rowing etc
Resistance exercises involve muscular contraction against resistance to improve your muscular strength, endurance and mass. Now this doesn’t necessarily mean you have to lift heavy weights at a gym. It can be as easy as sitting and standing up from your chair!

How Does This Benefit You?

Aerobic exercise stimulates and strengthens your heart and lungs, allowing the body to improve the way it uses oxygen. You will find that as this happens, exercise and even activities that you do each day will become easier to do. It also helps reduce risk factors for Type 2 Diabetes, including blood pressure and waist circumference.

Resistance exercises have been shown to improve insulin sensitivity within the body for up to 48 hours after exercise! So not only will these exercises allow your muscles to take glucose from the blood and into the cells without the use of insulin, but it will also improve the way your cells respond to insulin after you have finished exercising.

Where To Start?

Use the services available to you!

If you have Type 2 Diabetes your GP can refer you for group services to assist in its management. These group services are available with a Medicare rebate. You are entitled to the following services each calendar year: 
- One initial assessment
- Eight group sessions 

If you need some help in getting started, get in contact with your local Accredited Exercise Physiologist. They can help you develop an individualized exercise program and give you strategies to keep you going in the long term.

For more information on how we can help, contact us on 8969 6300 or info@bblifestyleclinic.com.au