Keeping up with the Latest Technology

Dr. Ofelia Melley, founder of The Laser Institute of Pinehurst, understands the importance of keeping up with the latest technology and often attends international meetings to study the latest cutting-edge technologies in cosmetic skin treatments. Last month, Dr. Melley attended the Controversies & Conversations in Laser & Cosmetic Surgery, an advanced symposium focusing on the efficacy, risks and marketing of the latest technology in cutaneous and cosmetic surgery. The symposium, run by renowned physicians Drs. Arndt, Dover, Alam and Anderson, offered Dr. Melley the opportunity to bring the latest techniques to her patients so as to provide them with the best results. The meeting covered topics ranging from skin tightening, fractional laser treatments, and injections like Botox.

By keeping up with the latest technology, Dr. Melley can provide optimum treatments for each patient. Whether for laser tattoo removal, body contouring, microblading or weight loss, her goal is to provide patients with the most effective skin care for every patient.

PicoSure, one of the most advanced laser treatment systems available for tattoo removal and skin rejuvenation, is an example of the cutting-edge technology in use at The Laser Institute of Pinehurst. PicoSure delivers energy in trillionths of a second, causing the tiny particles that make up tattoo pigments to shatter and disperse while keeping the surrounding skin safe from damage.

Dr. Melley also offers the latest injectable filler products in the Juvederm and Restylane families as well as cutting-edge body contouring devices such as SculpSure by Cynosure. In addition, The Laser Institute of Pinehurst offers a customized weight loss program that includes personal medical counseling from skilled providers. Caring staff will monitor your progress and make the necessary adjustments that will allow you to best achieve your short and long-term goals. Learn more about which weight loss program is right for you at pinehurstlaser.com/Weight-Loss or call 910-295-1130 today to schedule your consultation!

Washing Fruits and Vegetables for Safety

weight loss pinehurst nc

Eating the recommended daily serving of fruits and vegetables is a key factor in maintaining both a well-balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle. Along with taking supplements, colorful produce can give us the nutrients we need to fight off illness, have more energy and feel better on a day to day basis. Unfortunately, there are underlying risks to understand when making sure your fruits and veggies are safe for eating. Bacteria may be present in the soil that crops are grown in or the water used for irrigation. In many cases, pesticides and bug killers are sprayed to keep destructive insects away. Pesticides, Bacteria, Parasites, Viruses and Chemicals are all reasons to wash your produce before eating.

Consuming fruits and vegetables without first washing them thoroughly could lead to foodborne illnesses if contaminants are present on the surface. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has established some guidelines to follow to make sure your produce is safely prepared:

  • Clean – Wash your hands before handling fresh fruits and veggies and be sure to also wash your produce. Organic fruits and vegetables can still carry trace amounts of pesticides. Some prepackaged salad mixes may be listed as “prewashed,” however, it is safest to wash them.
  • Separate – Be sure that, when cooking produce, not to cross-contaminate when also preparing meats or seafood. This includes preparing your meats and produce on separate cutting boards and thoroughly sanitizing the surface on which you’ve cut or kept raw meat.
  • Cook – Cook food to the temperature which kills germs and bacteria. This varies for each type of meat. Fruits and vegetables are usually safe to eat raw but can be peeled and/or cooked to remove potential bacteria.
  • Chill – Refrigerate food promptly! Be sure your food is kept below 40°F. Never thaw food on the counter because bacteria can easily multiply on food once it reaches room temperature.

Fruits and vegetables can be washed by soaking the produce in a mixture of white vinegar and water, ½ cup vinegar to every 2 cups of water. Soak for 5-15 minutes, then be sure to rinse items under a running tap while massaging the surface to remove any dirt that may be clinging on. Another way to clean produce is by soaking in a salt water solution. Use 1 tsp of salt for every cup of water, soak and then rinse thoroughly. Using 1 teaspoon of Clorox to every gallon of water will help kill parasites and bacteria on fresh produce. Always rinse, rinse and rinse again.

It is most important to wash loose produce such as lettuce because its leaves can contain more soil than other types of vegetables. In addition, you can peel some produce such as potatoes, carrots, onions, cucumbers and apples to safely remove any bacteria or chemicals that could be on the skin. Wash utensils with hot soapy water and clean countertops and cutting boards so that bacteria, that may be present on the outside of fruits and vegetables, is not transferred to the inside when cutting.

These steps will ensure that you are not at risk for illness while eating healthy. At The Laser Institute of Pinehurst, we offer a customized weight loss program that includes personal medical counseling from our providers. We will monitor your progress and make the necessary adjustments that will allow you to best achieve your short and long-term goals. Learn more about the weight loss programs we offer at pinehurstlaser.com/Weight-Loss or call our office at 910-920-9411 today to schedule your consultation!

Vitamins and supplements that will help you along

Now that you are on your way to maintaining an ideal weight with a healthy diet and regular exercise, it is important to consider what else you can do to benefit your new lifestyle. Although you may have incorporated protein rich foods and colorful vegetables, supplements can help you bridge the gap. Studies show that taking certain vitamins on a daily basis can help you get the nutrients your diet may not be providing and also lower the risk of certain diseases.

There are many supplements available to you but weeding through them and deciding which ones may complement your diet can be an overwhelming and confusing task. Discussing what is right for you with your provider at The Laser Institute of Pinehurst can add some welcome health benefits. As with any change pertaining to your health, it is important to consult a physician before beginning a vitamin regimen as some supplements could interact with medications you may be taking. Our doctor will be able to help you decide what vitamins or supplements are best for you based on your overall health.

CoQ10 – CoQ10 is an important naturally occurring nutrient that protects the mitochondria in our cells from free radical damage. It is significantly reduced by many medications. Supplementation will help with energy and weight loss.

Cinnamon Bark – Cinnamon Bark will help with regulating your sugar levels, insulin levels and will help improve your lipid profile. Make sure you are purchasing only organically grown Cinnamon Bark.

Matcha – Matcha, or Green Tea, as it is more commonly known, contains epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a natural antioxidant. Studies show that Green Tea supplements can help maintain cardiovascular and metabolic health. It will also help with weight loss.

Omega-3 – Omega-3 Fatty Acids are essential for cell function, blood clotting and artery health to name a few. There are three main fatty acids: alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Because our bodies cannot create these fatty acids from scratch, we must rely on food and supplements to be sure that we are getting the recommended dosage of Omega-3s. Studies show that, for most, two servings of Omega-3s a week can help lower the risk of heart disease and improve the “good” cholesterol levels (HDL) while lowering the “bad” cholesterol (LDL).

Protein – Protein supplements can promote muscle health by helping muscles recover after an intense workout and also promote bone health. If you are not getting all the protein necessary through your diet, whey and casein protein powders are a great source. Most commonly mixed into water to create a protein shake, these powders can contain some lactose so you should consult your doctor before taking them if you are lactose intolerant.

Calcium – Calcium, which is abundant in foods such as green beans, broccoli and even figs, is important for bone and heart health. Taking Calcium supplements can help combat deterioration of bone density and lower your risk or developing Osteoporosis.

Vitamin D – Vitamin D, which can be absorbed through the skin via sunlight and metabolized by the liver, is important for cardiovascular health and lung function. Studies show that Vitamin D can support immune system health and help in regulation. Vitamin D assists in glucose control and is essential for normal insulin levels.

Probiotics – Probiotics can affect digestive health by promoting “friendly bacteria” in the digestive system and can assist in the absorption of nutrients. Probiotics have been found to improve the symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome and promote bowel regularity.

B Vitamins – B vitamins are beneficial for the body’s nerve and blood cell health and also prevent certain types of anemia. B vitamins are essential for glucose regulation, carbohydrate and amino acid metabolism.

Understanding how to maintain healthy weight loss and achieve ideal nutrition can be a challenge. At The Laser Institute of Pinehurst, we offer a customized weight loss program that includes personal medical counseling from our providers. We will monitor your progress and make the necessary adjustments that will allow you to best achieve your short and long term goals. Learn more about the weight loss programs we offer at pinehurstlaser.com/Weight-Loss or call our office at 910-920-9411 today to schedule your complimentary consultation!

Recommended Exercise to Lose or Maintain Weight

Weight Loss Pinehurst NC

Whether you are trying to lose weight or maintain the weight you are at, exercise will always be a major part of a healthy lifestyle. The Department of Health and Human Services recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of intense activity for an average adult per week. If you would rather do strength training in place of aerobic activity, train all major muscle groups at least two times a week using resistance heavy enough to tire your muscles after 12-15 repetitions.

To Lose Weight

If you are beginning your journey to a healthier you at a weight you are not satisfied with and wish to lose weight, you must create a calorie deficit (i.e. burning more calories than you take in). Today there are multiple devices you can use to track you calorie intake vs. calories burned. For example, you can use a Fitbit or Apple Watch that tracks your heart rate and shows you how many calories you burned for the day and pair it with the popular app My Fitness Pal which tracks the calories you take in throughout the day. For a specific time, the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommends 250 minutes of exercise per week for significant weight loss.

To Maintain Weight

If you have reached your goal weight and don’t wish to gain or lose weight, you don’t want to quit exercising altogether, but gradually slow down your exercise regimen. According to a study done at the University of Alabama, adults aged 20 – 35 who worked out one day a week saw no muscle loss or weight gain. Just make sure to keep that one day a week workout intense enough to break a sweat. For improved health benefits The Laser Institute of Pinehurst recommends 3 – 5 workouts per week alternating cardio-vascular work-outs with strength training.

At the Laser Institute of Pinehurst, we offer a customized weight loss program that includes personal medical counseling from our providers. We will monitor your progress and make the necessary adjustments that will allow you to best achieve your short and long term goals. Learn more about the weight loss programs we offer at pinehurstlaser.com/Weight-Loss or call our office at 910-920-9411 today to schedule your complimentary consultation!

How to Determine Adequate Daily Protein Intake

Weight Loss, Pinhurst NC

As we continue our journey towards a healthier lifestyle, we have come to the discussion of protein intake. There are many questions surrounding this topic – “How much protein is too much?” “What food contains large amounts of protein?” “How much protein is too little?” etc. Before determining the amount of protein you should be eating, you must first take into account how often you exercise and if your goal is to lose weight or maintain.

You Exercise Often and Want to Lose Weight

If you are looking to lose weight and you are exercising on a regular basis, protein is a key ingredient to incorporate in your diet to help sustain your strength for your workouts. According to Women’s Health Magazine, to calculate how much protein you should be eating simply divide your weight in pounds by  2.2 to get your weight in kilograms, as an active person (workouts 4 or more times a week) multiply the number by 1.2 for the minimum amount of protein you should be eating.

You Want to Maintain

According to Body Builder.com the daily minimum protein intake recommended by the National Institutes of Health is 0.36 grams per pound for a sedentary person. So to calculate how much protein you should consume each day to maintain your weight multiply you weight in pounds by .36.

The most common source of protein can be found in meats such as poultry, pork, beef, fish etc. However, large amounts of protein can also be found in eggs, quinoa, lentils, yogurt, certain vegetables, peanut butter and many other foods. This helps when you have special dietary needs that do not allow meat.

Sometimes, in a weight loss journey, you can greatly benefit from having help. At the Laser Institute of Pinehurst, we offer a customized weight loss program that includes personal medical counseling from our providers. We will monitor your progress and make the necessary adjustments that will allow you to best achieve your short and long term goals. Learn more about the weight loss programs we offer at pinehurstlaser.com/Weight-Loss or call our office at 910-920-9411 today to schedule your complimentary consultation!

Never Underestimate the Importance of Brightly Colored Vegetables!

Weight Loss, Pinehurst, NC

As discussed in our last blog, the first step to a healthier you is determining your ideal, healthy body weight and how to calculate it. The next step is changing your eating habits in order to consume the correct balanced nutrients to assist in your weight loss journey. While we have been taught that all vegetables are good for you (when portioned correctly) and should be eaten every day, there are some that benefit our overall health more than others, such as brightly colored vegetables. In addition to making for colorful meals, adding a variety of color on you plate gives you a more complete set of important nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. Below, we have outlined what each bright color of vegetable means, how it benefits you, and what it contains.

  • Red Vegetables, such as beets, red onions and tomatoes are good sources of vitamins A and C and assist in heart and eye health and may lower risk of developing cancer.
  • Yellow Vegetables, such as corn and yellow summer squash have lutein and zeaxanthin. Lutein and zeaxanthin are both pigments that fight free radicals that can damage your eyes. Yellow bell peppers contain vitamin C, while spaghetti squash contains vitamin A.
  • Orange Vegetables, such as carrots, pumpkins and sweet potatoes all contain vitamin A and promote healthy skin as well as boosts the immune system. Sweet potatoes also contain potassium.
  • Green Vegetables, such as artichokes are a good source of fiber, while spinach and asparagus contain folate. According to the CDC, folate may help prevent birth defects. Green leafy vegetables usually have high levels of vitamin K.
  • White Vegetables, such as cauliflower and mushrooms can provide a great source of both vitamin C and folate. In the case of mushrooms, they can be the only vegetable to contain vitamin D, an important dietary nutrient for one’s immune system, bones, teeth and energy level.
  • Purple Vegetables, such as eggplant and purple potatoes are filled with antioxidants that work to improve memory and urinary tract health.

According to the Harvard School of Public Health, the recommended dose for vegetables is 2 ½ cups per day.

Determining a specific diet that is right for you and your individual weight loss goals can be overwhelming. The Laser Institute of Pinehurst offers individual diet plans created by our clinicians, medical staff and health coaches. Each diet is specifically tailored for the patient’s goals in mind. Learn more about the weight loss programs we offer at pinehurstlaser.com/Weight-Loss or call our office at 910-920-9411 today to schedule your complimentary consultation!

Your Ideal, Healthy Weight and How to Calculate It

The first step in a weight loss journey is setting goals for yourself. This will help keep you focused and give you reasons to celebrate as you reach each goal. It is important to understand that healthy weight is different for each individual person and must be calculated with multiple factors in mind including age, gender, muscle mass, bone structure, etc.

According to the Surgeon General, you can find your ideal weight by using a Body Mass Index (BMI) calculator or chart (featured below). Based on the BMI index, underweight = <18.5, normal weight = 18.5-24.9, overweight = 25-29.9, and obesity = BMI of 30 or greater.

After you’ve calculated your BMI and set your healthy weight goal it is time to start planning. If you are overweight, losing 10% of your body weight can improve your health overall. Losing weight gradually is the healthiest option as well as the most effective in terms of long term goals. It is recommended to stay in the range of losing ½ pound to 2 pounds a week.

Sometimes, in a weight loss journey, you can greatly benefit from having help. At the Laser Institute of Pinehurst, we offer a customized weight loss program that includes personal medical counseling from our providers. We will monitor your progress and make the necessary adjustments that will allow you to best achieve your short and long term goals. Learn more about the weight loss programs we offer at pinehurstlaser.com/Weight-Loss or call our office at 910-920-9410 today to schedule your complimentary consultation!

New Year Resolution: Healthy Living

Happy 2018! The New Year is here and with it comes resolutions and goals that mostly center on self-improvement and healthy living. Unfortunately, many dive right into dieting and extreme exercise without taking the time to research the best ways to go about it and what their ideal healthy weight is. This often times leads to a broken diet and an abandoned gym membership.

To achieve your goals you must understand the basic facts about healthy living and that it has no end date, but is a lifestyle change. The main points to know are as follows:

  1. your ideal, healthy weight and how to calculate it,
  2. why incorporating brightly colored vegetables into your diet is beneficial,
  3. adequate daily protein intake,
  4. recommended exercise,
  5. vitamins and supplements that will help you along

Each person has a different “healthy weight” which is based on their BMI (Body Mass Index). This can be determined using a BMI calculator. Once you determine your healthy weight the next step is putting together a diet that incorporates all the right foods and their correct portions. Vegetables are important to any diet as they are bursting with nutrients essential to fuel your body. Brightly colored vegetables contain not only the nutrients found in all vegetables, but powerful antioxidants that help remove potentially damaging oxidizing agents in the body. Next, according to Harvard Health, in order to determine your Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein, simply multiply your weight in pounds by 0.36 or refer to an online protein calculator that allows you to enter your activity level. Make sure to incorporate at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise at least 5 times a week. If your diet does not include all the recommended vitamins and minerals, consider supplements after you consult with your primary care physician. Certain supplements may interact with any medications you are currently taking.

Most often, with a healthier lifestyle comes healthier skin! However, sometimes your skin just needs that extra push, call our office at 910.295.1130 today to schedule your complimentary consultation!

The Skinny on SculpSure

SculpSure is specifically designed to trim away areas of stubborn fat that are not responding to diet and exercise alone. It is the first FDA approved treatment for customizable, non-invasive lipolysis.

SculpSure uses a hyperthermic laser to disrupt and eliminate unwanted fat cells with precise and effective treatments. The treatment can be done in as little as 25 minutes and can treat 4 areas at one time. By using Contact Cooling the patient is kept comfortable throughout the short treatment and can resume regular activities immediately after.

Due to the use of the hyperthermic laser, the SculpSure applicator sits on top of the skin, blending the treated and untreated areas and avoiding the shelving or “shark bite” effect that other body contouring treatments sometimes leave behind.

SculpSure treats:

  • Flanks
  • Abdomen
  • Bra fat
  • Inner and outer thighs

Don’t wait for the New Year to start your body makeover call our office at 910.295.1130 today to schedule your complimentary consultation!

Chemical Peels Come in all Strengths and Sizes for all Skin Types

Contrary to popular belief, not all chemical peels will leave you hiding away from the rest of the world until the recovery time has taken its course. Chemical peels vary in intensity and strength, and can be applied to all skin types as well as other areas of the body other than just the face.

The Laser Institute of Pinehurst offers multiple options in skin rejuvenation using chemical peels. They are used as a non-surgical way to treat many skin conditions including:

  • Acne
  • Aging skin
  • Blackheads and whiteheads
  • Sun damage
  • Fine lines and wrinkles
  • And so much more!

There are 3 chemical peel strengths: superficial, medium, and deep. Superficial peels are the lightest and treat discoloration, sun damage, very fine lines and soft wrinkles and stimulates collagen production. Superficial peels often take several treatments. Medium peels reach the entire epidermis and are used to treat stretch marks, wrinkles, and scars. As the skin recovers new, tighter, smoother skin replaces it. Both superficial and medium peels require little to no downtime. Deep peels go further by reaching the epidermis, the pappilary dermis and penetrating the reticular dermis. While this peel is the longest lasting and is used for spot treatment, deep scars, and deep wrinkles, it also requires the longest recovery time and can sometimes be painful.

After a consultation with Dr. Melley or one of her certified Aestheticians, a treatment plan will be customized for each patient’s particular needs. Call 910-295-1130 to schedule a skin consultation today!