Start Get­ting Health­ier Right Now!

Albuquerque Journal - Parade - - START GETTING HEALTHIER RIGHT NOW! -

Get a fresh start in 2010! Our PA­RADE month of makeovers will help you with ith ev­ery­thing from fi­nances to fam­ily. This week, we kick things off with your health. alth. To in­spire you, Ka­ley Cuoco and Johnny Galecki, stars of the hit CBS sit­com “ The Big Bang The­ory,” joined PA­RADE Con­tribut­ing Ed­i­tor Dr. Mark Lipo­nis for a three-day stay at Canyon Ranch Health Re­sort, where he is the med­i­cal di­rec­tor. They were game for some healthy changes. Are you? ALEY AND JOHNNY ARE both young and healthy, but they wanted to look and feel even bet­ter. So on a brief hia­tus re­cently from shoot­ing their TV show, they vis­ited me in Lenox, Mass. Over a pe­riod of three days, we ran tests to check ev­ery­thing from choles­terol to bone den­sity to blood su­gar, then gave them ad­vice on health, nutri­tion, and fit­ness. Through it all, Ka­ley and Johnny were great sports. They agreed to share their ex­pe­ri­ences so that oth­ers could ben­e­fit from what they learned, too.

As ac­tors liv­ing in Hol­ly­wood, Ka­ley and Johnny have pretty sim­i­lar lifestyles th­ese days. But their child­hoods were very dif­fer­ent, and their back­grounds con­tinue to shape their health—not just through ge­net­ics but also through the lessons they learned from their eir par­ents. Many fac­tors af­fect your phys­i­cal con­di­tion, and fam­ily back­ground is one of them. Ka­ley, 24, grew up in a tight-knit fam­ily that val­ued healthy eat­ing and ex­er­cise. When stressed, she’s es likely to get ac­tive—play­ing with her dogs or rid­ing r one of the horses she’s had si since child­hood.

Johnny, 34, grew up in a blue-col­lar neigh­bor­hood out­side Chicago. At 15, he left home and headed to L.A. on his own. Now when he’s stressed, Johnny tends to reach for a cig­a­rette or an un­healthy snack. To help him learn bet­ter ways to cope, we hooked him up to a biofeed­back mon­i­tor, which works much like a lie-de­tec­tor test. “Sen­sors mea­sure a per­son’s phys­i­cal re­ac­tion to stress, and the re­sults ap­pear on a com­puter screen in real time,” ex­plains my col­league Dr. Jeff Ross­man. “Johnny’s test­ing showed a strong phys­i­o­logic re­sponse to stress, but he was able to con­trol it us­ing some sim­ple breath­ing and vi­su­al­iza­tion ex­er­cises.” Johnny says the ex­pe­ri­ence helped him re­al­ize that “ it’s im­por­tant to take time for my­self and de­com­press. I like to im­merse my­self in my work, but I need bal­ance in my life.” Ka­ley is in ex­cel­lent phys­i­cal shape, but her pos­ture is her Achilles’ heel. “It’s true,” she says. “I told the doc­tors that my back hurts when I slouch, and they said, ‘No, your back hurts be­cause you slouch!’ ” To help her with the prob­lem, phys­i­cal ther­a­pist and phys­i­ol­o­gist Reba Schecter an­a­lyzed Ka­ley’s car­riage and move­ment.

“ Ka­ley of­ten has pain in her neck and hips, which could be im­proved by be­ing more mind­ful of her pos­ture and do­ing some sim­ple ex­er­cises,” Schecter says. Ad­di­tion­ally, her an­kles are ro­tated slightly in­ward—a skele­tal prob­lem she’s had since child­hood—which can be cor­rected with custom in­serts (orthotics) in her shoes. We were happy to catch this now, be­cause if left un­cor­rected it could cause se­ri­ous joint prob­lems later in life.

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