Recent posts

Road Trip Anyone? Tips for Eating Healthy when your Choices are few and far between.

Summer fun most always includes a road trip, but along with it comes food you'd never think about eating at home.  Chips, candy, slushies, and a McDonald's at every mile marker are what you are faced with. After, you've spent the entire spring getting ready for shorts and that new bathing suit had to have.  However, with a little smart packing and a good plan you can eat healthy no matter what your limited choices maybe.

If your only option is a ....

Gas Station: Food that has an expiration date (one that hasn't passed!) is usually much healthier than any shelf-stable food that is loaded with preservatives.  Head to the refrigerator case for sting cheese or yogurt, orange juice, or unsweetened iced tea.  If nothing here sounds appealing, grab some individual-size bags of dried fruit, nuts or whole-wheat crackers.

Highway Rest Stop: If you are lucky enough to find a Starbucks, skip the Mocha Frappuccino, and order a iced or hot coffee so you can control the amount of sugar and cream added. (Or go for a nonfat latte, with less the 100 calories.)  Lunch plates with fruit and cheese, pasta salad or a wrap are great choices that keep you in the 300-390 calorie range.  Breakfast options are great too. Whole-wheat wraps with eggs, oatmeal, or a yogurt parfait will give you a healthy, energy packed meal.

Fast Food: Many fast food chains offer salads with protein as a healthier option to pick from.  For example, McDonald's Premium Chicken Salad with Grilled Chicken or Wendy's Mandarin Chicken Salad both have around 200 calories.  Remember, order low-fat dressing, most regular salad dressing have about double the calories.  The key to keeping a salad healthy and light is keeping the crispy chicken and cheese off, with these two ingredients added you can end up eating as many calories as a Whopper or a Big Mac.  If you just have to have french fries, remember, portion control, and indulge in a small fry with about 230 calories.

Italian or Pizza: Marinara sauce is low in fat and made up mostly with tomatoes and spices, so it offers a dose of nutrients and vitamins.  Order a small bowl of pasta with marinara sauce and a small green salad(low-fat dressing of course), and enjoy!  Pasta primavera made with broth and not cream is a great option as well. Pay attention to how large a single portion may be, if it could feed a family of four, ask for a half order, or an extra plate and transfer a smaller amount to the plate and just eat that.  If pizza is your vice, skip the pepperoni, sausage, and meatball toppings, go for fresh veggies(broccoli, peppers, or extra tomatoes) instead.

A Mexican Chain: Taco Bell is open late!! So you are sure to run into one of these. Stay away from anything that goes crrrrunch.  Tacos that are made of soft corn tortillas are a smarter choice.  Tortillas should be filled with grilled chicken, fish, veggies, or shrimp, opt for black or pinto beans, salsa, lettuce, tomatoes, and onions.  Skip the sour cream and cheese, replace these with guacamole-avocado contains heart-healthy monounsaturated  fats.

A Sandwich Chain: Sandwiches are easy to customize from the bread up.  Choose whole-wheat bread, add turkey, ham, or grilled chicken, and as many vegetables as you can stand.  Skip the mayo which can add 80 calories and 9 grams of fat, add tangy oil and vinegar or a spicy mustard instead.  Never pick the Italian calorie-busting subs with pepperoni and salami, these are loaded with sodium and who wants to carry around extra water weight while on vacation.

The best option BYO...(Food,That Is) Pack a cooler with bottles of water, baby carrots, grapes, apples and blueberries. For a protein boost, pack cheese sticks, hummus packs, and drinkable yogurts.  Bananas, tail mix, granola bars, and 100-calorie packs of crackers all travel well outside the cooler.

I wish everyone a safe and fun vacation.  Use these tips so that your vacation splurges can be used when you get where your going, don't arrive feeling like you have already gained 5 pounds.  Have a great time.


Top Rated Sunless Tanning Products


I am back to follow up my previous post about sunless tanning products.  Through research and my own personal use, I have collected my top 5 choices for sunless tanning products:

1)  Clarins Self Tanning Instant Gel.  This product can be purchased at most department stores and at beauty supply stores such as Sephora.  iT is easy to apply and will give you that natural tan you are searching for.

2)  Jergens Natural Glow Revitalizing Daily Moisturizer.  This product I have personally used and absolutely love!  It will moisturize your skin while gradually developing a tan.  The color is maintained with continuous use.  It is available at most drugstores

3)  L'Oreal Sublime Bronze Pro Perfect Self Tanning Mist.  This spray tan can be done in the comfort of your own home and takes just seconds to dry while developing your tan over the next few hours!  However, it does take practice to get it just right.

4)  Tan Towel Self-Tan Towelettes.  Tan Towelettes are perfect for touching up any spots that you may have missed with your tanning mist or loition.  It is not recommeded to use over the entire body because it will tend to streak and leave dark spots.  But this product is an excellent one to keep in your bathroom cabinet for an emergency touch up session!

5)  Mystic Tan.  If you would much rather have a professional apply your tan, then I would highly recommend choosing salon that uses the Mystic Tan UV-Free Spray on Tanning.  It is more expensive in the long run than any of the above products but will by far give you the best result.  Mystic Tan can be found in tanning salons.


Get A Flatter Belly!


Bathing suit season is in full bloom and one thing we all would like is a flatter belly.  Many of us diet and work out relentlessly and still cannot achieve a sculpted, flat belly.  This can be very frustrating.  Luckily I've got a few items to try out for those of you who suffer from this issue.  One option for some may be to have Dr. Conkright perform an Abdominoplasty.  A tummy tuck is designed to give you a toner, flatter abdomen.  The procedure removes excess abdominal skin and may also reduce fat and tighten the muscles of your abdominal wall.  It frequently is performed to correct muscle weakness and loose skin that can occur following multiple pregnancies or significant weight loss. Call to schedule a free consultation with Dr. Conkright to determine if you are a candidate for an Abdominoplasty!

For those of you who are in dire need to flatten your belly fast, whether it is for an upcoming vacation or even a wedding, check out the tips below:

  • Sip more water. To reduce bloat, try sipping on 6 to 12 glasses of water each day.
  • Do something to relieve stress everyday. The stress hormones actually cause your body to store more fat cells around your waist-so slashing stress is key.
  • Eat a little fat every day. When you have zero fat in your daily diet, you will lose enzymes that help you digest fat.  The key is moderation and to consume healthy fats such as avocados.
  • Tweak the way you breathe. Inhaling and exhaling through the belly will cause it to fill up like a balloon.  Instead, the rib cage should be expanding and contracting when you breathe.  Practice makes perfect!
  • Get at least 7 hours of sleep a night. Lack of sleep will cause you to be hungrier and therefore overeat, and we all know that can lead to a bigger belly.
  • Cut back on artificial sweeteners. A lot of our bodies don't recognize artificial sweeteners as food and therefore don't know how to digest them causing us to become gassy.
  • Stand up straight. Slouching pushes your hips and belly forward, making your body look heavier and your stomach poochier than they really are.

*tips courtesy of Glamour May 2010 issue


Latisse 1st Anniversary Celebration!

If you are interested in Botox or Juvederm XC listen up!  In celebration of the 1st anniversary of Latisse, Allergan (the maker of Latisse) is offering a fabulous special:

Save up to $100 on Botox and Juvederm when you purchase a kit of Lattise!

Latisse is the first and only FDA-approved prescription treatment for hypotrichosis used to grow eyelashes, making them longer, thicker, and darker.  Eyelash hypotrichosis is another name for having inadequate or not enough eyelashes.

It’s easy to save!
•Visit our office to see if Latisse ®, BOTOX® Cosmetic, and JUVÉDERM® XC are right for you.
•Purchase a LATISSE® solution kit.
•Get a $100 rebate on a treatment of BOTOX® Cosmetic* and JUVÉDERM® XC.†
•If only one of these treatments is right for you, get a $50 rebate on either BOTOX® Cosmetic or JUVÉDERM® XC injectable gel.

*Minimum purchase requirement is $200.
† Minimum purchase requirement is $400. Not valid on a 0.4 cc syringe. Not valid on JUVÉDERM® injectable gel.

**this offer is only valid through July 15, 2010.

Feel free to stop by our office to pick up your kit of Latisse or call our office to schedule a complimentary skin consultation appointment!  812.842.0240


Protect Yourself From Too Much Sun This Summer

With the arrival of warmer weather, many people are spending more and more time in the sun.  However, basking in the sun, especially without protecting your skin can lead to wrinkles, premature aging and, worst of all, skin cancer.  Fortunately there are many options to help protect and keep your skin looking great.  But, doctors and aestheticians say that while people are more aware of the sun’s harmful effects, a lot of people still do not apply sunscreen correctly or don’t apply it at all.

“It is really important that people of all ages apply sunscreen daily and apply it correctly. At minimum, this means applying a generous amount of sunscreen at least 20 minutes before sun exposure, and reapplying every few hours,” said Cindy Hinkle, an aesthetician at Northwestern Medical Center.

What You Need To Know About Sun Block & Protecting Yourself from the Sun

What does UV mean? Before you select an effective sunscreen, you should know Ultraviolet (UV) radiation that affects the skin are classified as UVA and UVB.

What is UVA? UVA is the longest of the UV.  It can penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin and plays a major role in skin aging and wrinkling.  Recent studies show it causes the development of skin cancer.  UVA penetrates glass and clouds.

What is UVB? UVB is responsible for burning, tanning, accelerating the skin aging and also plays a key role in the development of skin cancer.  UVB varies by season, location and time of day.  The most intense amount of UVB hits the U.S. between 10:00am and 4:00PM.

What is SPF? Sun Protection factor (SPF) measures the protection provided by a sunscreen against UVB.  It is defined as the ratio of how long it takes for skin to redden with sunscreen compared to without sunscreen.   Although the SPF ratings found on sunscreen packages apply mainly to UVB rays, many sunscreen manufacturers include ingredients that protect the skin from some UVA rays as well.  Higher SPF numbers are preferable, but don’t let an inflated number lull you into a false sense of security, especially because an SPF measures protection only from UVB – not the more dangerous UVA rays.

What is Broad Spectrum? -- When choosing the right sunscreen select a product that provides “broad-spectrum” protection for both UVA and UVB.  If you are going to the beach or pool make sure it is water-resistant and doesn’t wash off in the water.  You want to have an SPF of 15 or higher.

What ingredients should my sunscreen contain? -- When choosing a sunscreen select one that contains ingredients known to filter UVA. These include Mexoryl SX, avobenzone, titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.

What sunblock is best for my kids? -- For children under 6 years of age, choose sunscreen with a SPF of 30 or higher.

What is the difference between a chemical and physical sublock?  There are two categories of sun sunscreens:

Chemical or Physical.

  • The chemical sunscreens protect the skin by absorbing UV radiation.  The physical block light by reflecting UV away from the skin.  Chemical sunscreens contain avobenzone or a benzophenone and PABA.  In rare cases these chemicals can cause skin irritation and should be avoided if you have skin allergies.
  • The physical sunscreens that use titanium dioxide and zinc oxide do not typically cause allergic reactions.  Though new technology, they are process making them more transparent without losing their ability to screen UV.

How do I apply sunscreen? Apply sunscreen 20 minutes before going out into the sun to give it time to absorb into the skin.  Apply it generously and regularly- about 1 ounce every 2 hours-and more often if you are swimming or perspiring.  A small tube containing between 3 to 5 ounces of sunscreen might be only enough for one person during a day at the beach.

What order should I apply sun protection? If you are using a topical medication or skin treatments such a vitamin C, that should be applied first to a clean, just washed face, followed by a moisturizer if needed, sunscreen, makeup, powder and blush. To recap, always apply sunscreen after moisturizer and before your makeup.

Be Skin Savvy. Enjoy a free consultation with our Clinical Nurse at  Dr. Conkright's office for the latest in sun protection and anti-aging.

-Courtesy of the ASAPS

ASPS Reports Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Down in 2009, Up 69% in First Decade of New Millennium

Consumer Interest Continues to Rise According to Study

For Immediate Release: April 27, 2010

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - Although it's been a sluggish year for plastic surgery due to the economy, the long-term outlook is more encouraging. According to statistics released today by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), 12.5 million cosmetic plastic surgery procedures were performed in the United States in 2009, down 1 percent from 2008; up 69 percent since 2000.

"The industry has experienced some economic downturn during the later part of the decade due to the recession, but, overall, plastic surgery has seen growth in the first decade of the new millennium," said ASPS President Michael McGuire, MD. "The current economic climate will likely not have an impact on long-term growth. The largest contributor to the increase in procedures over the past decade has been the advent of injectable wrinkle fighters and other minimally-invasive procedures."

Cosmetic minimally-invasive procedures increased 1 percent, to nearly 11 million procedures in 2009. Minimally-invasive procedures are up 99 percent since 2000. The top five minimally-invasive procedures in 2009 were:

  • Botulinum toxin type A (4.8 million)
  • Soft tissue fillers (1.7 million)
  • Chemical peel (1.1 million)
  • Microdermabrasion (910,000)
  • Laser hair removal (893,000)

"Skin is in," said Dr. McGuire. "Chemical peels and soft tissue fillers like hyaluronic acid are up 9 percent, microdermabrasion is up 8 percent - these are the procedures that patients are opting for despite the economy."

Cosmetic surgical procedures decreased 9 percent, with more than 1.5 million procedures in 2009. Surgical procedures are down 20 percent since 2000. The top five surgical procedures in 2009 were:

  • Breast augmentation (289,000)
  • Nose reshaping (256,000)
  • Eyelid surgery (203,000)
  • Liposuction (198,000)
  • Tummy tuck (115,000)

"It would seem, as innovations in cosmetic minimally-invasive procedures increase, surgery will continue to decrease," added Dr. McGuire. "However, as the economy rebounds, more patients and Boomers will continue to seek surgical body contouring procedures (liposuction, tummy tuck), eyelid surgery and breast augmentations. In fact, breast augmentations are up 36 percent since 2000."

Echoing Dr. McGuire's words, new consumer data from an online survey conducted in March by Harris Interactive® on behalf of found America's interest in cosmetic procedures to be on the rise. According to the survey, more adults would choose to have "work done" if money was not an issue in the 1st quarter of 2010 (69%), as compared to 4th quarter 2009 (54%) - an increase of 15 percent. There is also high interest for "Mommy Makeover" type procedures: more than one in four (29%) of those who would get cosmetic work done if money were not an issue would have a tummy tuck, 23% liposuction, and 15% a breast lift. Eyelid surgery was the top procedure for those planning to have a cosmetic surgical procedure within the next 12 months (27%).

*courtesy of the ASPS,