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Team Thursdays

Get to know OneCare! Each Thursday we will be featuring a member of our Team!


Andrew Stacey
Solutions Architect

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Background

I have over 16 years experience in IT managing infrastructures of diverse sizes and supporting end users.  I have worked in retail, telecommunications, construction and now healthcare and love the challenge a new environment brings.

Role with OneCare

I am the Systems Administrator managing our cloud infrastructure as well as helping develop our web and mobile applications.

Most Excited About…

I love that at OneCare we are developing a solution to help people proactively take charge of their own health and wellness.

Life Outside of OneCare

I have been married to my amazing wife Brooke for 21 years.  We have two daughters, Taylor (21) and Cami (18).  My faith and my family are the most important things in my life.  Outside of work I enjoy hanging out with friends and family, playing guitar, being in the gym, or being in the kitchen.

 

Team Thursdays

Get to know OneCare! Each Thursday we will be featuring a member of our Team!


James Reed
Software Architect

JR2

Background

James has 30 years of designing and engineering software on multiple computer platforms including mainframes, PC servers, web, and mobile.  Having served in the Counterintelligence community with the United States Marine Corp, he designed the military’s first portable database system for tracking terrorists and manpower manifesting.  Later he served in the fortune 500 arena with Kellwood Company, he managed IT for the 2.4 billion dollar organization.  While at Kellwood he also designed some of the first bilingual systems to manage offshore textile manufacturing and producing US Customs documentation prior to the internet era.  He worked with AT&T managing IT for 77 locations in 5 different states and designed some of the first web based operational reports and tools.  He continues to hold high level security clearances and remains in the intelligence community with TSCM Security Services, a technical surveillance and countermeasures organization, assisting the federal government with web based defense contracting software, evaluating network vulnerabilities, and migration of internal government systems to the cloud.  James is also the copyright holder to his own cloud based ERP system known as the Enterprise Automated Support Environment (EASE) for small businesses.

Role with OneCare

My primary role is software development on the OneCare Platform as well as implementing mobile solutions for getting OneCare available on Android and iOS.

Most Excited About…

Through continuing education and self-motivation James stays on the cutting edge of the latest trends, techniques, technological advancements and software tools available. James looks forward to bringing these tools to OneCare’s self-care platform!

Life Outside of OneCare

Married with 5 children (2 Step Daughters, 1 Step Son, and 2 daughters of my own) very much a family oriented person who enjoys the outdoors playing badminton, ping pong, and shooting pool.  When away from the computer also enjoys working with wood building anything from dog houses to furniture to small trinkets.  James assists vets with their transition back to civilian life after their military career.  Recently signed up with the Marine Recon Foundation who also assists vets with problems and struggles.

Next Week: Saloni Gupta, Software Developer 

Breathe.

11 - Breathe

Feeling some mid-week stress? Try these #BreathingExercises from TIMEhealth!

#WellnessWednesday

1. Sama Vritti or “Equal Breathing”

How it’s done: Balance can do a body good, beginning with the breath. To start, inhale for a count of four, then exhale for a count of four — all through the nose, which adds a natural resistance to the breath. Got the basic pranayama down? More advanced yogis can aim for six to eight counts per breath with the same goal in mind: calm the nervous system, increase focus and reduce stress, Pacheco says.

When it works best: Anytime, anyplace — but this is one technique that’s especially effective before bed. “Similar to counting sheep,” Pacheco says, “if you’re having trouble falling asleep, this breath can help take your mind off the racing thoughts, or whatever might be distracting you from sleep.”

Level of difficulty: Beginner

2. Abdominal Breathing Technique

How it’s done: With one hand on the chest and the other on the belly, take a deep breath in through the nose, ensuring the diaphragm (not the chest) inflates with enough air to create a stretch in the lungs. The goal: Six to 10 deep, slow breaths per minute for 10 minutes each day to experience immediate reductions to heart rate and blood pressure, McConnell says. Keep at it for six to eight weeks, and those benefits might stick around even longer.

When it works best: Before an exam, or any stressful event. But keep in mind, “Those who operate in a stressed state all the time might be a little shocked how hard it is to control the breath,” Pacheco says. To help train the breath, consider biofeedback tools such as McConnell’s Breathe Strong app, which can help users pace their breathing wherever they are.

Level of difficulty: Beginner

3. Nadi Shodhana or “Alternate Nostril Breathing”

How it’s done: A yogi’s best friend, this breath is said to bring calm and balance, and unite the right and left sides of the brain. Starting in a comfortable meditative pose, hold the right thumb over the right nostril and inhale deeply through the left nostril. At the peak of inhalation, close off the left nostril with the ring finger, then exhale through the right nostril. Continue the pattern, inhaling through the right nostril, closing it off with the right thumb and exhaling through the left nostril.

When it works best: Crunch time, or whenever it’s time to focus or energize. Just don’t try this one before bed: Nadi shodhana is said to “clear the channels” and make people feel more awake. “It’s almost like a cup of coffee,” Pacheco says.

Level of difficulty: Intermediate

4. Kapalabhati or “Skull Shining Breath”

How it’s done: Ready to brighten up your day from the inside out? This one begins with a long, slow inhale, followed by a quick, powerful exhale generated from the lower belly. Once comfortable with the contraction, up the pace to one inhale-exhale (all through the nose) every one to two seconds, for a total of 10 breaths.

When it works best: When it’s time to wake up, warm up or start looking on the brighter side of things. “It’s pretty abdominal-intensive,” Pacheco says, “but it will warm up the body, shake off stale energy and wake up the brain.” If alternate nostril breathing is like coffee, consider this a shot of espresso, she says.

Level of difficulty: Advanced

5. Progressive Relaxation

How it’s done: To nix tension from head to toe, close the eyes and focus on tensing and relaxing each muscle group for two to three seconds each. Start with the feet and toes, then move up to the knees, thighs, rear, chest, arms, hands, neck, jaw and eyes — all while maintaining deep, slow breaths. Having trouble staying on track? Anxiety and panic specialist Dr. Patricia Farrell suggests we breathe in through the nose, hold for a count of five while the muscles tense, then breathe out through the mouth on release.

When it works best: At home, at a desk or even on the road. One word of caution: Dizziness is never the goal. If holding the breath ever feels uncomfortable, tone it down to just a few seconds at most.

Level of difficulty: Beginner

6. Guided Visualization

How it’s done: Head straight for that “happy place,” no questions asked. With a coach, therapist or helpful recording as your guide, breathe deeply while focusing on pleasant, positive images to replace any negative thoughts. Psychologist Dr. Ellen Langer explains that while it’s just one means of achieving mindfulness, “Guided visualization helps puts you in the place you want to be, rather than letting your mind go to the internal dialogue that is stressful.”

When it works best: Pretty much anyplace you can safely close your eyes and let go (e.g. not at the wheel of a car).

Level of difficulty: Intermediate

 

Which one did you try? We love the Progressive Relaxation! Remember, stay happy, and take control of your health today!

Write Down Your Goals!

10 - WriteGoals

Studies show you’re more likely to accomplish your ‪#‎goals‬ when you write them down!

Tips for Setting Goals:
1. Dream! Think big.
2. Make it Measurable
3. Have Benchmarks
4. Set realistic Time Frames
5. Celebrate, Reward Yourself!

Is hitting Snooze affecting your weight?

We all do it. We all know it is good for us.
And the majority of us wish we got more of it.

I’m talking about SLEEP.

Countless studies have shown that getting a good night’s rest can improve mood and stress level, but did you know sleep loss affects your metabolism? Beth Malow, chief of Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s Division of Sleep, states, “There are many studies linking not getting enough sleep with diabetes and obesity.”

Seven out of every ten adults in the United States reported daily stress or anxiety that interferes with their lives. This 2007 study by the Anxiety Disorders Association of America, which aimed to examine the effects of stress on sleep, claimed all seven of those individuals also said they have trouble sleeping… well, it is no wonder we are seeing an increase in numbers of diabetic and obese individuals today!
With the announcement of Withings’ new Aura sleep tracking device, the company simultaneously released the results of a study on the habits of waking up. Including data about what we use to wake up and the sounds we prefer to wake up to, the study also said an astonishing 42% of Americans set an alarm earlier than they plan on getting up so they can stay in bed an additional 5-10 minutes.

And what about that dreadful snooze button? Withings reported 57% of people snooze their alarm clock at least once, with over 28% snoozing two or more times! So why is this important?

“Constantly varying the time [you go to bed or you wake up] can lead to ‘social jet lag’ and can make you feel like you’ve just traveled across multiple time zones.” – Brandy Roane, a behavioral sleep specialist with the University of North Texas Health Science Center

For those of you who’ve suffered from jet lag, you know it’s not any fun, sometimes affecting your productivity for days.

The increasingly popularity of health tracking devices and the concept of the ‘quantified self’ has also led to a surge of sleep trackers being developed. But will they really help you manage your sleep?

It depends.

Like with any data-collecting device, it is important to understand how to use that data. If you simply track your sleep without noticing the trends, then you’re not going to be successful at improving your overall sleep quality or how rested you feel the next day. Roane mentions sleep trackers not taking into account other factors such as ambient light levels or outside noise. While this is true for some fitness trackers that include sleep capabilities, there are several devices now on the market that are solely sleep trackers that do consider these factors.

The same US Health News article, ‘How to Make the Most Out of Your Sleep Tracker,’ includes several helpful tips for putting the data to good use. For instance, even though your tracker may have a tendency to exaggerate the number of times you wake up during the night, it is important to correlate those restless nights with that extra cup of afternoon coffee you keep telling yourself you shouldn’t drink!

In conclusion, it is important to understand what you are interested in learning about, and from there to pick the best method of data collection for you. If you’d like more information about the consequences of insufficient sleep, Harvard Medical School’s Division of Sleep has a great website devoted to its importance.

Although the devices available today for at-home sleep tracking may not be perfect, learning about your sleep habits and using that knowledge to make positive adjustments in your routine (or lack-there-of), could be an easy way to improve your overall health… something we should all be striving to do!

The comparison table below is in no way an exhaustive list of all available devices or sleep-tracking features, so make sure to fully research devices if you’re planning to buy one!

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P.S. Did you know our OneCare Platform can incorporate sleep data as well?! Quickly view all of your important health information in a single personalized dashboard!