News You Can Use
Janet Alexander and Chris Maund

June 2013
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Summer beach
Greetings one and all,
The summer solstice is almost upon us here in California where the longest day of the year will usually be spent outside in the bright summer sun and at one of the many beaches we have at our disposal. 'School is also out for summer' and so this month we touch on the issue of sunblock and vitamin D, or is it better to just cover up with a big old shirt and floppy hat? We also return to the subject of the pelvic floor - (for both sexes), add to your 'good fats' list and yes we have changed our business name but no we have not changed what we do. Same beast - different colour. Cheers xxxxx
'Slip, slop, slap, wrap and slide' 
'Slip, slop, slap' was an iconic 80's Australian sun protection campaign which was adopted by New Zealand and always came out in December -the start of the kiwi summer. It originally used a cartoon lobster to 'slip' on a shirt, 'slop' on some sun block and 'slap' on a hat. The ultimate goal was skin cancer prevention and to warn people of the damage of being in the sun for too long. This year while I was home for the summer holidays I noticed that they had changed the character to a cartoon kiwi (a flightless bird native to New Zealand) and had added two more words - wrap and slide. 'Wrap' on some sunglasses and then 'slide' into the shade. The sun in New Zealand can be brutal hence the number of people in long sleeve swimming clothing and lying under sun umbrellas in the photo above, taken at Matapouri Beach a popular Northland holiday destination. We also have 'burn times' included in the daily weather forecast section of not only our local newspapers but also on our national television stations. For example, if it's going to be an '8 minute burn time day' you know for sure it will be a hot one and sunblock, hat, sunglasses, clothing and shade will be needed. You can also burn in an overcast day 'down under' so tourist beware.
Dr Google states that the sun's UV radiation is both a major cause of skin cancer AND the best natural source of vitamin D. The risk of skin cancer from too much sun exposure therefore needs to be balanced with maintaining adequate vitamin D levels. Since the advent and increased use of sunblock, vitamin D deficiency has also greatly increased as sunblock prevents the production of vitamin D in the skin. So there lies the rub! Too much sun exposure leads to possible skin cancer and melanoma, too little vitamin D leads to a whole host of symptoms including bone loss and osteoporosis.
So what do we do? Be sensible! In order to get our required dose of vitamin D it is recommended that we get sun exposure without sunblock two times per week for 10 to 15 minutes BUT only if the UV index is below 3. (Check out the following website for the UV index chart If you have fair skin and will be outside in the mid-day sun then make sure you are fully covered AND have sunscreen and leave your cultivation of vitamin D to either early in the day when the heat of the sun is low or late afternoon. 
A great company to have in your contacts list is Coolibar - They specialise in everything sun protection especially cool clothing not only for the swimming pool and beach but also for everyday wear. If you are in the market for a sunscreen use this website to make sure you are getting a no BS take on what is available out there. Remember, try to get a product which is clean as possible - if it is on your skin it is in!
There are also many brands of sunglasses to wear as protection for your eyes. Any pair is better than none BUT if you are going to be on water (sailing, canoe etc) or out running, cycling, hiking in absolutely bright, bright sun (like we have for our race in Morocco) then we recommend the brand Kaenon as their lenses are second to none and then Oakley as they have large frames that cover a lot of the face. Add a wide brimmed hat and you are good to go. Don't forget, damage from sun exposure is cumulative over one's lifetime and so make sure you get enough sun to stay healthy yet don't blow it by getting horribly sunburnt. Enjoy the summer and make good choices - be sun smart. Longevity is key so don't use up all your nine lives! :)
For all the foodies in the house at last a company that makes traditional, old fashioned fats! Fatworks is based in Portland, Oregon and produces 100% grass-fed, kettle rendered beef tallow and 100% free-range, pasture raised duck fat. Their website is still in the design stage but you can buy their products at They have some interesting product names and I am sure you can guess which one I have just ordered. Getting our weekly intake of good fats just got a make over. Check them out!
Do you pee straight? or laterally?
Yes - you did read correctly, do you pee straight? What? Yep time you go to the bathroom take a quick look and see if your urine is going straight down or off to one side or the other! Chris and I have just got back from Montreal, Canada where we attended an amazing 5 day course by Dr Guy Voyer on the pelvic floor. It was information overload at the highest level as the pelvic floor is quite an intricate area AND we also jumped into a year three osteopathic class. If you look at the anatomy on Dr Google (I am really simplifying things here) you can see that the pelvic floor is more or less made up of two triangles - one anterior (in front), one posterior (at the back) and a figure eight moving from one apex of the anterior triangle to the apex of the posterior triangle. In the middle of the anterior half of the figure eight is the urethra and vagina in females and penis and testicles in males, in the middle of the posterior half of the figure eight is the anus and rectum. One way to see if the tissue is 'out of order' is to see the direction of urine flow. If it is not straight then it means that the fascia around all the muscles that make up this 'pelvic floor geometry' has to be normalised especially the muscles around the urethra. Of course, before one gets to the pelvic floor it is also essential to normalize sacro-iliac joints, stretch off glutes and adductors and all the other muscles that attach to the pelvis. Ladies - we also have more organs down there than the gents and more 'cul de sacs' between our organs and so therefore more chances of our tissue creating tension issues. I was the body for the class and could not believe the difference the various techniques made to my running stride length. No longer shuffling which is a great thing! All of the techniques we learnt were/are external, none internal and I tell you there were many personal 'aha moments'. Have you ever fallen off a bike? Yes,several times. Fallen while skiing? Yes, many. Worn killer heels? Absolutely! Lots of things that I had previously not thought of affecting my pelvic floor. Now I know and so if you too have a stack of 'aha moments' to normalize you have my number. This information is too good not to share so don't be shy!
We have renamed our business to Pacific Fitness & Health, Inc. to fit in with the new local business area 'Pacific Station' which is the shopping area across the road that houses the Wholefoods market and a number of other stores. Encinitas has also been inundated with lots of art studios and so we decided to add 'Fitness & Health' to our name so people would know at a glance, what it is that we do. Nothing else has changed so keep striving for great health, behave in the sun, howl at the full moon on the 23rd and enjoy - Janet and Chris xxx