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Health + Wellness

We humans are ever evolving and dynamic individuals whose health needs change through every stage and transition in life. Find the help and support you need to make your journey to healthier you fun, easy and inspired!

Health + Wellness

My Morning Skin Care Routine

Mornings are super crazy at our house!

Between getting the kids dressed and putting breakfast on the table, I barely have time to put myself together. To keep things simple, I rely on these 3 awesome beauty products to help my skin feel nourished and healthy (even on 4 hours of sleep!).

Here’s what I use:

  1. Pure and Simple Sensitive Skin Face Wash – daily
  2. Wildcraft Buff Face and Body Scrub – every other day
  3. Wildcraft Regenerating Cell Face Serum – daily

Check out my video below for all the details!

xo

Dr Aliya

Health + Wellness

3 Acupressure Points for Stress Relief

Feeling stressed out?  Do you ever wish there were a simple way to ease your tension and stress?

Guys, there is!

It’s called Acupressure and it works wonders!   I’ve been teaching my patients acupressure points for years and it’s been a great tool to help ease a lot of common discomforts that you can do on your own.

Watch my video below to learn the 3 easy stress relieving acupressure points that you can start doing NOW!

Health + Wellness

5 Easy Exercises for Busy Moms

Guys!  It’s the beginning of the month and I’ve decided that this month I’m going to focus on being more active on a daily basis.  It’s super hard to juggle mommy-ing, work, household chores, errands, etc.  The to-do lists are endless!

But this month, I’m making myself a priority and taking an hour each day to do something active for me.  Not only will this help me physically, but it will definitely help me mentally as well.

To do this, I reached out to my friend, fellow mom and fitness expert Lara Marq.   Lara is a mom of 2 and specializes in pre and post natal fitness.  We sat down to discuss what it means to get back into working out regularly post-baby and she put together this amazing 5 exercise workout for me!

The beauty of this routine is that it literally takes less than an 30 minutes to complete and requires no gym equipment!  She based on my needs as a mom, cleared of any pelvic floor dysfunction and/or abdominal separation.  It also has a modified version for anyone getting back into working out after baby.  Check out the video below!

** Remember to always check with your health care practitioner before starting any new exercise routine, especially post-baby**

Health + Wellness

Celebrating Mamas Every Day for May – #MomADayForMay

If you’re new here, welcome!

This post is a bit of a summary of my #MomADayForMay series I did on my instagram feed (@draliyavisram).  Every day in May I highlighted a mom that I admired and respected.  Women who are game changers and who aren’t afraid to admit they’ve made some mistakes.  Sometimes we just need to remind ourselves that there are other mothers out there that are just like us.

So here they are!  My #MomADayForMay line up:

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May 1 Trisha Enriquez, @nottummymommy

My first #momadayformay is dedicated to the always humble, forever gracious and truly lovely Trisha of @notummymommy.   Trisha was one of the first mamas I met in this “instagram-world” and I was immediately inspired by her openness and her drive to help mamas feel better.  Trisha is a certified Nutrition Coach and Pre and Post Natal Fitness Specialist. She’s also a mama to the sweetest little mini.  Her 4 week fitness and nutrition program is so realistic and has really helped me in my journey back to getting fit and healthy post-baby.  She is one of the best people I know and sincerely believes in helping other women reach their goals.  Moreover, her superwoman ability to juggle work, family and her passion motivates me daily!   Thanks Trisha for being one fit mama!

 

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May 2 Farah Nasser, @farahnasserglobal
You most likely see her everyday on TV delivering the day’s news with style and ease.  But tome, she’s more than a news anchor. She is an amazing mother of two, an active member of our community, a leader in her field, a wonderful role model to so many young girls and I’m so proud to also call her my cousin. We grew up together and she always knew how to push the boundaries, even as a rebellious teen.  She makes wearing both the career woman hat and the attentive mama and wife hat lookeffortless and always manages to spend time with her close friends and family despite her crazy busy schedule. Farah is on a mission to change the world for women in media and I am so excited to see what she does next. I love you, Cuz!
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May 3 Cat and Nat, @catandnat
This dynamic duo has been on my list of “mom-spiration” from day 1 and so it makes sense to include them in my #MomADayForMay shoutout.  Cat and Nat are mamas that are keeping it real. They share everything that we moms are too afraid to talk about or even admit. Usually, at some point during the day while juggling the kids, household stuff and my career, I find myself in a situation thinking “What would Cat andNat do?” And inevitably the answer is always, “RELAX – as long as the kids are smiling or laughing – you’re doing good”. Their #momtruths are like food for my mommy soul and their unapologetic take on motherhood is so relatable. Thanks Cat and Nat for  your honesty, authenticity and for being so damn funny!
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May 4 Emily Weinmann, @ushappyfour
This lady is one of my favourite people of all time – not only is she a truly beautiful human (she has has two tiny beautiful mini humans) – but she is also the super mama behind the East Toronto Young Mothers facebook community of which I am fortunate to be a part.  The group provides an opportunity for parents to share advice, exchange resources and support one another through this  roller coaster ride called “parenting”. Honestly, it’s like asking advice from 4,000 of your closest friends who are going through it all with you.  It’s my village and Emily is at the heart of it. She is one of the most compassionate and kind-hearted people I know and I feel truly grateful to have met her.
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May 5 Lara Marq, @laramarq
It’s Friday (yay!) and I’ve always loved ending the week with a bit of sweat session before settling in to enjoy the weekend.  So it’s fitting that today’s #MomADayForMay is one of my fitness motivators – @LaraMarq.  Lara is all things health & fitness.  She’s a personal trainer, a spin and pilates instructor, a wellness advocate and a mama of 2 sweet babes.  And by the way she’s killing it!  She does it all and I can honestly say she gives me my daily dose of motivation to get the “job” (aka the workout) done.  She’s also one of the sweetest, most down to earth mamas around.  Keeping kicking butt lady!
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May 6 Tania Joy Antonio, @taniajoyantonio
My #MomADayForMay shoutout is the soulful mama behind the book The Affirmation Station.
This book belongs on every child’s shelf and I can’t believe I didn’t pick it up sooner.  Tania’s book empowers children and adults alike to think positively and compassionately and encourages affirmations as a daily practice.  I literally just started reading it and I’m astounded by the impact it’s had on my life already, especially as a mama.  I can’t wait to share this book with Rosie and Will and I know that it will empower them to love themselves, each other and others wholly and with gratitude.  I sincerely encourage everyone to pick up her book today! Life changed.
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May 7  Stacey Lipstein, @TinyHouseMama
You know that feeling when you meet someone and you instantly feel at ease talking to them about this, that and the other?!  Well, that’s the feeling I had when I first met Stacey – @tinyhousemama.   She’s the co-owner of the super stylish, super popular @fusshairstudio in #Leslieville and mama to the sweetest little boy.  Stacey is one of the funniest people I know and  manages to balance a crazy successful business with family life with grace, honesty and a lot of laughs.
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May 8 Zehra Allibhai, @zallibhai
She’s a mom of 2, a personal trainer, an advocate of family fitness & health and a confident, strong & inspiring Muslim woman so it’s not surprising that Zehra Allibhai is becoming a star in the fitness world.  She is my shout out for today’s #MomADayForMay, and honestly she has become one of my mama role models.  As a Muslim woman ( I don’t wear a hijab), I often find myself feeling a bit uncomfortable in the social media world.  Zehra sets a positive example for other women and she isn’t afraid to put it all out there.  She is doing some truly amazing things and she has easily become my insta inspo on a daily basis.
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May 9 Joy McCarthy, @joyoushealth
This woman is a true inspiration to thousands of people who have transformed their lives by reading her books, following her simple recipes and tips and being motivated by her positivity and warmth. Joy McCarthy of @JoyousHealth is my #MomADayForMay today and I can honestly say that she is my health and wellness guru. She is a certified holistic nutritionist, brilliant author of two successful books and mama to sweet Vienna.  Joy has this ability to make simple foods taste delicious with easy to follow recipes for the whole family!  Rosie loves her Strawberry Chia Pudding!  I am so proud to call her my friend.  Thank you Joy for inspiring us to eat well to live well!
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May 10 Vanessa Falsetti, @josephineacreativelife
Here’s the thing about this Insta world – it’s actually a lot smaller than you think.  Over the last couple of years, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting so many mamas that are doing some pretty creative and amazing things online. Vanessa is one of them!  She is a mama of 2, a writer, a teacher and the woman behind the prettiest lifestyle blog @josephineacreativelife. I kept meeting Vanessa at various “mama events” all over the city!  She supports so many women in this blogger world by just being present. She is the loveliest of mamas and she shares her tales of motherhood and parenting on a daily basis.
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May 11 Jessica Glaze, @jessicaglaze
Life is crazy with 2 kids – daycare drop offs, breastfeeding, nap schedules, bedtime!  But this lady makes having 3 kids look like a cake walk!  @jessicaglaze is my #MomADayForMay today and her littlest one is just a couple of months old. Jessica’s blog is true honest depiction of what being a mom of 2, then 3 is all about.  I love her mom hacks and her tips on home organization – they make my life’s chaos a bit more manageable. She’s also one of the sweetest mamas and her ease and style inspire me to take things day by day.  Maybe it’s true what they say…”3 is the new 2”?!?
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May 12 Tina, @mombossof3
Tina isn’t just a mom of 3 adorable little boys, but she’s also fearless leader of the “Marmy” (aka Mom Army).  She is a mommy vlogger who keeps things real by sharing her daily ups and downs with her followers and her videos are a hilarious depiction of true #momlife! I love her honest approach to motherhood!  We recently did a collaboration together and I’m so excited to share our video with you today….head over to my youtube channel (link in bio) to see the full video.
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May 13 My Mom, Yasmin
This woman has taught me what it means to be a strong, brave mother for my children. She has taught me to face adversity and how to rise above it with grace and compassion. My #MomADayForMay today is none other than my own mama – Yasmin. (She hasn’t found her way to Instagram yet). If you know our family, you already know how strong she is and what she has been through over the course of her life. The challenges and hardships that she has overcome in the last several years and particularly in the last year. And how she’s always managed to see the l light and positivity in every situation and circumstance. Mom – you are one tough chick and I feel so truly blessed to be your daughter and to have you in my life.
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May 14 – YOU!
Today’s #MomADayForMay shoutout is to YOU – all of the moms out there!  The messy hair, sleep deprived, spit up stained, carpooling, crazy busy moms.  To the moms who stay at home and to the moms who go to work.  To the grandmas, the stepmoms, the foster moms, the surrogate moms and the moms-to-be.  To the moms we’ve sadly lost and to the moms who’ve lost little ones.  And to the dads who are also moms.  My father used to say “Everyday should be Mother’s Day” – he was a very smart man!  Hope you have a very Happy Mother’s Day!
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May 15 Rebel Mamas, @therebelmama
The aftermath of Mother’s Day…cards have been read and displayed, flowers have been received, brunch has been eaten and moms continue to be moms.    Today seems like the perfect day to shoutout @TheRebelMama for #MomADayForMay (ah yes, we’re doing this for the whole month!).  The Rebel Mamas are a sisterhood of modern day mamas who aren’t afraid to say and do what they want.  They are out to revolutionize the way mamas “ought” to behave.   Just because we are moms doesn’t mean we can’t follow our dreams and have successful careers and fabulous adventures and FUN! Thank you Rebel Mamas for being straight up, hardcore, no bull sh*t b*tches!
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May 16 Ana, @bluebirdkisses
Although I haven’t met Ana of @bluebirdkisses in person, I feel like I already know her!  Her posts are so honest and real and come from the heart.  I often feel like she’s talking direclty to me which also makes her super relatable.   Also, her home is super swoon worthy and her 3 boys are super cute!
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May 17 Dr Sapna, @drsapna
She’s a businesswoman, a mom, an entrepreneur, a colleague and one of my besties. Today’s #MomADayForMay is a shout out to my dear friend @DrSapna.  Dr Sapna is one of the most driven and hardworking mamas I know.  She has created a full service health clinic in the downtown core where patients can receive a wide variety of health services all under one roof!   She’s also a mom of 2 sweet babes and has been one of my biggest fans throughout my career. Encouraging and supporting me since the day we met I feel so lucky to have this inspiring woman in my life!
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May 18 Taya Griffin, @tayagriffin
This woman played such a key role in my first few weeks as a mama that I had to include her in my #MomADayForMay shoutout.  @TayaGriffin is a lactation consultant, a homeopath and a mother of 2.  She has helped so many new mamas, giving them the skills and confidence to breastfeed their babies successfully.  Taya is so supportive and nurturing and her gentle guidance helped me find my maternal “groove” which helped me connect with my babies.  Above all, I love that Taya respects each mama’s nursing goals whatever they may be and has been and continues to be such a crucial lifeline in those early days in motherhood.
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May 19 Lydia, @fancy_gray
This mama is beautiful both inside and out and her feed is absolutely lovely. Lydia of @fancy_gray is today’s #MomADayForMay.  Mom of 2, Lydia is so inspiring yet so down to earth. From overcoming some pretty serious health challenge in her first pregnancy to designing her own unique jewellery line – Lydia is a true model of mama strength. (PS her jewellery is super pretty – you may want to check it out!)
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May 20 Angela Liddon, @ohsheglows
One of my favourite weekend activities is cooking with my little lady.  She’s a bit of a whirlwind in the kitchen (and outside of the kitchen) but she is a true lover of food!  A few years ago, I discovered a cookbook that changed my life and the way I prepared meals for my family.  My shoutout for today’s #MomADayForMay is @ohsheglows author, blogger and  mama of 2 – Angela Liddon.  The Oh She Glows cookbook is now a recipe bible in our house.  I knew it was a keeper when I made one of her vegan recipes and my husband (a meat and potatoes man) wolfed it down completely unaware that it was meatless.  Her recipes are super yummy, easy to follow and kid friendly!  Thanks Angela for an inspirational cookbook that has us eating well and feeling glowy inside and out!
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May 21 Dr Sue and Dr Sapna, @restoreintegrativehealth
These two lovely ladies are the co-founders of @restoreintegrativehealth clinic in Toronto.  Their vision to bring various health practitioners together to practice in a collaborative way provides patients with a holistic approach to health and I’m proud to be a member of their team.  Drs Sue and Sapna are compassionate naturopathic doctors, partners in business, busy mamas and health advocates.  They’ve created a warm and comfortable space that welcomes the whole family!
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May 22 Lynne Newman, @lynne.newman
You know that feeling when no matter how hard you try you can’t seem to keep your head above water? Like you’re drowning in a sea of to-do lists, chores, work, kids and life!  I’ve been there and @Lynne.Newman was one of my lifelines.  She is my #MomADayForMay today.  Lynne is an occupational therapist, a birth doula and mama to 2 little lovelies.  But to me, and to other mothers, she is much more than that.  She is my motherhood mentor, my parenting coach and my constant reminder to sloooow down and keep things simple.  Often, in our fast paced, busy world we forget to connect to the little moments in life that inspire creativity in our little people.  Thank you, Lynne, for allowing me an opportunity to create space within my life!
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May 23 Tracy Moore, @thetracymoore
This woman has been one of my female role models since before I even had kids so I’m excited to shout out @thetracymoore as today’s #MomADayForMay.  Tracy is the host of Cityline – a show I’ve watched from before I had Rosie.  Tracy’s down-to-earth, laid back style and her easy sense of humour instantly had me watching the show  on a daily basis.  She juggles motherhood (she’s a mom of 2), her career, a new clothing line she’s designed, various community volunteer roles and she also kicks butt in the gym!  Damn. I also love the fact that she started out as a CTV intern, then videographer eventually working her way up to the top!  Truly inspiring.
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May 24 Lianne and Emma, @MamasandCo
They say it takes a village to raise a child.  But know what?  It also takes a village to grow and run your business.  The many, many mamas that comprise the @MamasandCo community are my #MomADayForMay shoutout.  Mamas & Co is my tribe of entrepreneurial moms who support and inspire one another by sharing knowledge, resources and experiences.  The group’s leaders, Lianne and Emma organize various networking meet ups and business workshops to help women grow and succeed in business.  It’s women helping women and that kind of girl love is EVERYTHING!
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May 25 Peta Stinson, @saplingchild
She’s a mama of 3, holds a PhD (smarty pants!) and designs some pretty cute, eco-friendly clothes for tiny humans. Peta Stinson, founder of @saplingchild is my #MomADayForMay today!  Peta’s designs are fun and whimsical and her clothes are made from 100% organic cotton so they are super soft on baby’s skin. I absolutely love that her company is sustainable and ethical and in fact, each purchase from Sapling helps families and children in India through the company’s Giving Back program.  Love it!  She’s also one of the loveliest Aussie’s you’ll ever meet and we’re lucky that she’s found her home away from home in Toronto.
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May 26 Kelly Bourne, @kellybourne
This woman is my Parenting Guru and so she makes my #MomADayForMay list!  When Rosie is throwing down, and I mean really “throwing down!” I often  (maybe, not always) hear @KellyBourne’s voice in my head telling me to “check myself.”  To wait until the storm has passed before using reason and logic with my toddler.  Kelly’s website has a ton of resources and her tips are so easy to follow and remember during epic meltdowns.  The best part, she’s also a mom so she’s in the trenches right there with you!  Thanks for keeping me somewhat sane Kelly!
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May 27 Carol Belmonte, @carolbelmonte
Ok, so today’s #MomADayForMay shoutout is to a woman who is an “honorary” mama.  @CarolBelmonte is a godmother (to little Will), a new auntie, a sister, a wonderful friend and a baby whisperer (honest truth).  She’s also the owner of the wildly successful Belmonte Raw, which provides healthy whole foods, cleanses and juices to Torontonians for years.  Her juices are fresh, rejuvenating and basically make me feel like a new mama!
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May 28 Dara, @bellybootcamp
Dara is a mom of 3, a personal trainer and founder of @bellybootcamp – a team of personal trainers that specialize in pre and post natal fitness.  She’s been getting mamas strong for years and her experience, first-hand, helps to motivate busy moms and moms-to-be.  Not to mention, her classes are often set outdoors and are a great way for new moms to connect with one another.  Plus, you can bring your babe along for some added weight!
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May 29 Joanna, @nestingstory
Guys!  Only three more days until the end of our #MomADayForMay series!  So many amazing moms – and today’s mama is no exception!  Joanna of @nesting story is mom of four kids.  Yep, four – including twins.  She’s also an interior designer, blogger and content creator.  If anyone knows what its like to be a busy mom, it’s definitely her.  She shares her tales of motherhood, marriage and mayhem (4 kids!?) on her blog and youtube channel.  Her posts are an honest portrayal of life after four kids from date nights to DIY – she’s the real deal.
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May 30 Rebecca and Erin, @welldotca
Today’s #MomADayForMay shoutout is the dynamic duo behind the popular, easy-to-shop, mama go-to online wellness retailer @welldotca.  Rebecca (the CEO) and Erin (the CMO) are smart, savvy and busy moms (like us!) who have made shopping for detergent and baby wipes to strollers and beauty products super easy and affordable.  I love that they also support local, Canadian businesses and have an amazing selection of green and natural products.  Midnight online shopping got a whole lot easier!
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May 31 My Grandmother, Mariam
My last #MomADayForMay shoutout is to a woman who has been the pillar of strength for me and my family.  She’s been the glue that has kept our family close through all of the ups and downs of life.  She’s at the centre of every birthday, barbecue, wedding, birth and always shows up with a hug, a laugh and tons (and tons) of Indian food.  She is my “Mama” (grandmother) and she inspires me everyday with her generosity, her warmth and her unconditional love.  I love you, Mama.
I truly hope you’ve enjoyed this series as much as I have enjoyed putting it together!  If you have any comments, send me an email (hello@draliya.ca)!  I’d love to hear from you!
xo
Dr Aliya
Health + Wellness

The Do’s and Don’ts of Foam Rolling

You’ve just finished your workout and as you make your way over to the stretching area you notice a woman moving her entire body over cylindrical piece of foam. She’s writhing over it, using several expletives and you wonder what the heck is she doing?! And more importantly, why?!?

Welcome to foam rolling my friend.

Foam rolling became trendy years ago when athletes used to roll out tight muscles and fascia (more on fascia here). It’s a form of myofasical release (like a massage), you do to yourself – call it self-massage.   Basically by using the foam roller and your own bodyweight you are releasing tight muscles via trigger points and increasing circulation and blood to that particular area of your body.

Here are a few do’s and don’ts that will have you foam rolling like a pro in no time!

DO pick a foam roller that’s right for you! Foam rollers come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, some with knobs for added torture….I mean, relief.   To be honest, I always suggest a longer foam roller so it’s easier to use to roll out your glutes, ITB and back. Of course, if you are traveling, you may want to get a shorter one as well for ease of packing!

DON’T roll directly on a joint or bone.  Ouchy!

DO roll slowly and with even pressure, spending a few seconds on each area of the body.  Enjoy each and every sensation!

DON’T overdo it!  It is not an exercise in pain tolerance. Placing too much sustained pressure on one body part can result in damage.

DO expect a little bit of discomfort.  It should be a “good” hurt, but never unbearable. If an area is too sore or tender, try rolling on surrounding muscles first to help loosen things up.

DON’T try to foam roll your neck. It’s awkward for a reason. The neck is a very sensitive part of the body and a difficult area to position your foam roller. If you are suffering from neck pain, seek the help of a health professional (like your chiropractor, wink wink).

DO it often. Being consistent with rolling is key. It’s not enough to just roll when you are in acute pain. Try rolling every other day! You will notice a difference!

What is your favourite body part to foam roll?  Let me know!

Happy Rolling everyone!

xo

Dr Aliya

 

 

 

Health + Wellness

What to Expect during a Chiropractic Treatment

New to chiropractic?  Ever wonder what to expect during chiropractic treatment and initial consultation?

You’re in luck!

Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting Tina (@mombossof3) – she’s a busy mama of 3, daily vlogger and youtube sensation!  She’s also a typical mama with typical mom posture – or “Mom – sture” (copyright pending lol).

She came into the Toronto  Yoga Mamas studio and wellness centre for her first EVER chiropractic treatment and she graciously agreed to having us film it!  Thank you, Tina!

So in case you ever thought – “gee, I wonder what happens during a chiropractic consult and treatment?” I’ve got you covered!

Check out our video below.  (it’s also got a few out-takes as well…for your viewing pleasure) 

PS Don’t forget to “like” and “subscribe” for more videos!   (pretty please!)

Hope you enjoyed this video!

Visit Tina’s channel at @mombossof3 for her hilarious daily VLOGs.

xo

Dr Aliya

Health + Wellness

3 Easy Stretches for Moms

Feeling a bit stiff and tight as a new mom?

One of the most common complaints new mamas have is pain and stiffness in the shoulder, neck and upper back areas and it’s not surprising.  Moms spend most of their day carrying, rocking, bending, lifting, feeding, nursing and rocking again.  These movements lead to some really tight muscles, stiff joints and inevitably some postural changes….think “hunchback”!   New mom posture is so common that I’ve coined the term “Momsture” (get it, get it…).  (It’s being copyrighted as we speak!)

Don’t worry mama, your posture or momsture is not a lost cause!

I have three easy peasy stretches to help loosen up those muscles leaving you feeling awesome…and only a tad sleep deprived! (I’m sorry but these stretches won’t have your baby sleeping through the night…if only, eh?)  Watch my video below to see what these look like and try them today!

You’ll be feeling better soon!

 

Here’s a recap of the stretches in this video:

  1. Chest opener against the wall
  2. Towel stretch
  3. Neck stretch with arms behind back

xo

Dr Aliya

Health + Wellness

A Walk for My Dad

April 30th 2016. The date doesn’t ring a bell for most that knew him. It’s not his birthday or my parent’s wedding anniversary. It’s also not the birthday of any of his siblings, kids, nieces, nephews or grandkids. Nope, it’s a seemingly ordinary day last year in April.

But for my sisters, my mom and myself April 30th 2016 holds much importance.

It was the date of last years Walk for Muscular Dystrophy (MD) in Toronto. And, the last time my dad participated in this walk with his family before he passed away in June 2016.

In early 2007, my dad was diagnosed with Inclusion Body Myositis (IB), an autoimmune disease that weakens and wastes the muscles progressively over time. And even though, his body was slowly deteriorating, his willpower and zest for life never wavered. He continued to be active in the community and one of his favourite events of the year was the Walk for Muscular Dystrophy. It was an opportunity to raise awareness and support those affected by neuromuscular disorders. It was also a way to connect with friends he had made who also lived with similar disorders and spend time walking/rolling with his family.

Muscular Dystrophy Canada provided much support to my dad (and to our family) throughout the years, generously funding devices and aides that helped him with daily activities, providing a conduit for him to reach out and share his experiences with others and also supporting our family throughout his disease.

April 29 2017. The date of this years Walk for Muscular Dystrophy. We walk in honour of my dad, keeping his legacy alive. We walk in support of everyone everywhere affected by neuromuscular disorders. We walk to help raise awareness, to fuel research and encourage advocacy.

We walk to make a difference.

I would love for you to walk with us!

Visit our team page here for more information. Hope to see you there!

xo

Dr Aliya

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Health + Wellness

Mother’s Wrist: A common “new mama” pain!

You’re a new mom to a gorgeous little babe!  Yay!

But you’ve started to notice your body is slowly deteriorating….oh no….  You thought the hard part was over (eg. giving birth)?  And despite all of your “war wounds” – tearing, abdominal separation, weakened pelvic floor muscles, cracked/sore nipples….you’ve now noticed an intense pain in your wrists, hands and thumbs!  Things get super sore when you pick up your beautiful beaming babe…ouchy!  Feels like your body is broken!  Sound familiar?

If so, don’t panic yet!

The wrist/hand/thumb pain you are describing sounds like a condition called De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis or as its commonly called, “mother’s wrist” or “mommy thumb”. De Quervain’s results from irritation and inflammation of the tendons that run from the base of the thumb to the wrist and forearm. As the tendons become more inflamed they rub against the “tunnel” that encloses them causing pain along the thumb side of the wrist.

Although anyone can develop De Quervain’s, it is most common in new moms (and a few new dads too). The repetition of lifting a baby numerous times during the day adds undue stress to a fatigued wrist.

In 2009, a study from the University of Colorado found that women were four times more likely to develop De Quervain’s than men.  In addition, some women experience symptoms during pregnancy as a result of fluid retention and hormonal changes causing the tissues around the tendons to swell and become inflamed.

Research has suggested that between 25-50% of new moms develop de Quervain’s during their baby’s first few months. Early recognition and treatment is key. If you are experiencing wrist or thumb pain, see your chiropractor as soon as possible for diagnosis and treatment options.

Unfortunately, mommy thumb seldom resolves on its own, however there are a few things you can do to get a grip on the pain.

01 / Use a different lifting technique – “the scoop”. One of the most important things you can do to prevent further injury is to modify your lifting technique. Instead of picking up your baby under his arms using primarily the thumb and index finger (in an “L” shape), try “the scoop” technique. Keep the palm of your hand up and try scooping him up by lifting under his bottom with one hand (keeping your thumb and index finger glued together) and supporting the back of his head with the other hand.

02/ Check breastfeeding position. Many women report that breastfeeding can irritate an already painful wrist, particularly during breast compressions (to help milk flow). Supporting or cradling baby’s head puts a strain on the wrist. Use a pillow to support the weight of the baby’s head so it isn’t resting in your hand.

03/ Rest & Ice. Ok so maybe resting your wrist is out of the question if you have a new baby. However, when your partner or a friend/relative is at home with you, hand over the baby and rest your wrist. This will allow some healing to occur. Icing frequently to decrease inflammation is also helpful.

04/ Try using a splint. A splint or brace that prevents the thumb and wrist from moving will help decrease swelling and discomfort. Wearing the brace consistently is important and many moms see an improvement in just a couple of weeks.

05/ Rehabilitative Exercises/Stretches.  Stretching your wrist muscles and gently massaging the area may help.  In addition, your chiropractor can help provide some key strengthening exercises that can help increase the strength in your muscles.  See my video below for some quick easy stretches and exercises that can help!

06/ Avoid texting.  Put your smartphone down and slowly back away.  Texting is a sure fire way to re-aggravate an already sore wrist and thumb.

07/ Consult with a health practitioner. A chiropractor can definitely help guide your treatment and recovery. Acupuncture has been shown to help!  Often this condition takes some time to get better, so be patient with yourself and your body.

A few easy stretches and exercises that will help!

Hang in there mama!  As your baby becomes a bit more mobile, your wrist pain will likely decrease.  This may bring a whole host of other issues – but that’s for another day!

xo

Dr Aliya

Health + Wellness

Homemade Holiday Granola

Here come the holidays!  And while I LOVE LOVE LOVE the holiday season with all of the joy and merriment that comes with it…holy crap, your wallet and bank account take a serious beating.

This year, given my maternity leave, I am *trying* to be more budget conscious (insert husband chuckle here).  Instead of buying gifts for colleagues, friends and family this year – I thought I’d try my hand at some DIY gifts!  I should mention, I am SO NOT a DIY-er…I mean who has the time?!?  Well, apparently, this year –  I do!  Aside from a newborn  and a toddler, I find myself with a bit more time on my hands to cook, bake and do “craft-y” things.

Among all of my adventures in DIY gifts was making my own holiday granola.  I’m happy to report – SUCCESS!  I combined a few recipes I found online to perfect my own version of holiday granola which included a combination of pecans and almonds, but I also added a bit of flax and coconut for some added nutritional benefit.  YUM!

PS this recipe is vegan and gluten free (provided you use GF oats)

Here is the recipe.  ENJOY!

Ingredients:

2.5 cups of GF rolled oats

¾ cup slivered almonds

½ cup chopped pecans

½ tsp ground cinnamon

pinch of salt

½ cup pure maple syrup

1 tbsp ground flax

¼ c shredded unsweetened coconut

¼ cup melted coconut oil

¼ tsp almond extract

1 tbsp vanilla extract

½ cup Thompson raisins

½ cup dried cranberries

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
  2. Toss oats, flax, pecans, almonds, cinnamon, coconut in large bowl and set aside
  3. Combine maple syrup, coconut oil and vanilla and almond extract in medium bowl. Whisk together.
  4. Pour liquid mixture over dry mixture. Make sure oats are completely coated and moistened.
  5. Spread evenly onto baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.
  6. Allow granola to cool completely once evenly browned.
  7. Add cranberries and raisins to mixture once cooled.

 

Usually makes about 3-4 cups.

It is so easy to make this granola ahead of time and store in airtight container for freshness for up to 3 weeks.  I boxed my granola up into cute little holiday tins and little baggies for colleagues and friends.  Delicious gift giving complete!

 

xo

Dr Aliya