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ADVANCE Perspective: Physical Therapy & Rehab Medicine

It’s That Time of Year Again

Published November 28, 2007 2:29 PM by Rebecca Mayer
Despite being the most joyous time of year, the holiday season can be tough for many reasons. The biggest trap that most Americans try not to fall into year after year is gaining weight as a result of over-indulging and under-exercising.

According to a recent CNN article, some people may put on five to seven pounds thanks to a steady diet of large meals, high-calorie beverages and irresistible desserts throughout the fall and winter. However, according to government surveys, the average American will gain just more than a pound.

One pound, you say? Big deal! Well actually, it is a big deal. Because most Americans fail to lose the small amount of weight gained each year during the holidays, the weight gain becomes quite significant over time, according to a study conducted by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

This study made me wonder. Physical therapy is a treatment method that focuses on pain relief, healing, restoring function and movement and improving body mechanics as well as improving a patient's overall fitness and wellness. On top of ignoring the general rules of health during the holidays, do Americans who require physical therapy neglect that aspect of their health as well? How can you-as PTs and PTAs-help your patients meet their fitness goals or maintain the ones already achieved? Do you feel particularly burdened during this hectic time of year? Are patients continuing to be compliant during the holiday season?

 

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