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Living a Healthier Life This New Year

Dear Friends,

As the holiday season draws to a close and we start thinking about the new year, full of hope and promise, it has become a tradition to choose a new year’s resolution or two in an attempt to improve our lives.

Many people choose to lose weight, cut out sugar, run a marathon, learn another language, or finally clean out the garage, but as this time of year approaches my resolution, and my suggestion for yours, remains the same: Live a healthier life.

The power of this resolution is in its broad simplicity because it allows for successes, great and small, in many areas of your life. Running a marathon, for example, is a very specific goal that is not easily accomplished and even more difficult to work toward in your everyday life.

“Live a healthier life,” however, can become a mantra. As you go through every day, remind yourself of this goal by asking, “Will this make my life healthier?”

“Will eating this bag of chips…?”

“Will going for a walk…?”

Many of us know the answers to these questions almost immediately and every “yes,” that you actually follow through with, is a victory. Small victories lead to a sense of accomplishment and soon even bigger victories. After only a few weeks of asking yourself this question, and choosing the healthier option, your confidence will grow and you will notice a big difference.

Making lasting changes to your life with any resolution can be difficult, especially without help. The support of family and community can increase your motivation, your tenacity, and eventually your victories. Thankfully when you need help trying to live a healthier life you have a lifeline at MAA. My staff and I are dedicated to holistic health and can serve as an invaluable resource on your journey to a healthier life.

How can MAA help you live a healthier life? Below are some of the Health categories we focus on most as the Apothecary to act as inspiration for destinations along your path.

Healthy Hormones

Hormones are a “Foundation of Health” affecting everything from weight and energy levels to mood and self-confidence. Poor diet, stress, even getting older can contribute to hormonal imbalance. I have been fascinated by hormones for much of my practice and have over 20 years of experience in Hormone Consultations and Gentle Hormone Restoration Therapy.

We carry easy-to-use, in-home, test kits for testing your hormone levels and we compound human identical hormones in our on-site, state-of-the-art compounding lab. We are here for you from start to finish. Learn more about Hormones and fill out our Initial Consult form at MAApgh.com

Healthy Skin
As you may know, your skin is the largest organ in your body. It makes up about 16% of your total body weight and it is the first line of defense against the elements. Healthy skin is a very important part of your overall wellbeing. LabNaturals Skin Care is a full line of non-toxic skin care products from cleansers, to moisturizers, including our antiaging powerhouses - the Vitamin C 20% Skin Serum and Dreamy Night Cream. Available in-store and on LabNaturals.com.

Healthy Hair
A full and healthy head of hair is something that many people may take for granted but there are several steps you can to keep your hair happy and healthy. Proper nutrition is a great place to start because the old adage is true, “You are what you eat!” B-vitamins and Omega-3 fatty acids are an important part of healthy hair growth. OTC supplements like Biotin can help your hair grow stronger by providing the necessary building blocks to the hair follicles. Avoiding harsh and toxic chemicals such as bleaches, chemical straighteners, and non-organic hair care products is another great step. You want to look for green, non-toxic hair care that will moisturize and nourish your hair.

If your hair has started thinning, we have numerous solutions for Hair Regrowth such as our Stimulating Shampoo and Conditioner, our Progesterone Leave-In Treatment, and compounded Minoxidil prescriptions. Our pharmacists have years of experience in hair regrowth and can help answer any questions you might have. Learn more online at MAApgh.com under our services tab.

Healthy Digestion
Healthy digestion starts with healthy food. A diet rich in whole grains, Omega 3 fatty acids, and green leafy vegetables is a must. At the Apothecary we have several nutrition plans and even do Nutritional Consults. Another key to digestive health is healthy gastrointestinal flora. Your gut is full, or should be full, of friendly bacteria called Probiotics. These beneficial bacteria make up the microbiome which helps digest our food, create Vitamin K and B Vitamins and even affect our moods in our guts or the “second brain.” Without replenishing these “good bacteria” that processed foods, alcohol, and antibiotic prescriptions kill off we are prone to overgrowth of yeast, candida, and Leaky Gut Syndrome.

Almost everyone can benefit from probiotics as part of their daily health routine and they are number one in my personal top 5 supplement regimen. We recommend the 30 Billion Count Probiotics available at the Apothecary. We also carry Chewable Probiotics combined with Digestive Enzymes, Betaine HCl enzymes, and Astaxanthin which may all help improve GERD or Heartburn.

Healthy Bedrooms
Good sleep habits are a very important part of overall health. Sleeping in a totally dark room and avoiding screens, like phones, TVs, and computers around bed time may help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. Most importantly is going to bed and awakening at the same time every day to encourage your body’s natural internal clock. Taking Melatonin nightly can help your Pineal gland rest and may help in the aging process. Avoid drinking before bed (alcohol raises blood sugar which raises insulin interferes with liver function) and leave 3 hours between dinner and bedtime to let the body’s digestive system rest and detoxify. Taking a hot bath, reading a book, or journaling your thoughts of the day can relieve stress and lead to a better night’s sleep.

Healthy Pets
Pets are an important part of the family and they need just as much care and attention as we do! MAA is Pittsburgh’s Pet Pharmacy working closely with veterinarians to compound pet medication into easier dosage forms. Is it an impossible fight to give your cat a pill? Does your dog just spit out medications? We are able to turn those pesky pills into liquids or flavored treats. Topical RX and OTC compounds, animal vitamins and other pet specific supplements are part of MAA’s wide selection for your furry friend. We even carry CBD Plant Oil for Pets to help with arthritis, anxiety, asthma, and other animal conditions.

At Murray Avenue Apothecary we believe in the triad of holistic health: Patient, Physician, and Pharmacist working together to achieve the health and well being of our clients. We will even contact your doctor for you. There will be times during this new year when you are unsure of the answer to the question, “Will this make my life healthier?” or after you’ve answered “No,” wonder “What would make my life healthier?” At those moments we hope you remember this article and your community pharmacy, Murray Avenue Apothecary, as a place to receive honest expert advice and any guidance you may require on your journey to a healthier you. We are here for you.

Susan Merenstein

Pharmacist and Owner
Murray Avenue Apothecary