My Blog

Posts for: April, 2020

April 27, 2020
Category: Family Medicine
Tags: Proper Nutrition  

Proper nutrition is vital for keeping people healthy throughout their lifetime. Good nutrition helps kids develop and grow properly and minimize their risk of developing chronic health issues, such as heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, cancers, and obesity among many others. Proper nutrition, of course, comes from a healthy diet, which according to the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans:

  • Is packed with vegetables, fruits, low-fat or fat-free dairy products, and whole grains.
  • Is low in added sugars, salt, cholesterol, trans fat, and saturated fats.
  • Includes a sufficient amount of nuts, eggs, fish, poultry, lean meats, and beans.
  • Stays within a person’s daily caloric requirements.

If you’re having difficulty within your nutrition or have special circumstances, Dr. Joel Biggers or Dr. Elizabeth Biggers, your primary care physicians here at Biggers Family Medicine, P.A. in Brandon, FL, can help customize a healthy eating plan fit for your specific needs. Meanwhile, start with these tips:

Incorporate All The Colors of Rainbow in Your Diet

Foods such as leafy, dark greens, tomatoes, beets, oranges, berries, and fresh herbs are rich in fiber, minerals, and vitamins. Try incorporating onions broccoli, or bell peppers to omelets and stews to give them a convenient and quick boost of nutrients and color.

Eat Fresh or Frozen Veggies

Commit to buying something from the produce section and trying something that you’ve never tried before each week.

Eat Fresh or Frozen Fruits

If your favorite fruits are not in season, consider trying their dried, canned, or frozen varieties. Do note though that some canned fruits contain syrups or added sugars so pick ones that are packed in their own juices or plain water. If you’re a diabetic, ask your primary care physician in Brandon, FL, about fruits you should avoid, as certain fruits could raise your blood sugar faster than others.

Include Calcium-Packed Foods

Opt for fat-free and low-fat yogurts without the added sugars. These dairy options are available in a broad range of flavors and are perfect dessert alternatives if you have a sweet tooth.

For Expert Advice on Proper Nutrition and Healthy Eating, We Can Help

Call (813) 655-4646 to set your appointment with one of our primary care physicians, Dr. Joel Biggers or Dr. Elizabeth Biggers of Biggers Family Medicine, P.A. in Brandon, FL.

Don’t let RA-related joint pain takeover your life. We can help.

You’ve been recently diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a progressive condition that attacks the body’s joints. Now what? Our Brandon, FL, primary care physicians Drs. Joel & Elizabeth Biggers are here to make sure that whatever your diagnosis, you get the proper care and pain management you need. Here are some ways to ease the joint pain and stiffness that comes with RA.

Heat and Cold Therapy

Both ice and heat therapy can provide pain relief while also getting the blood circulating. Cold is particularly good for reducing swelling and inflammation of the joints. You can apply a toilet-wrapped ice pack to the affected joints for up to 15 minutes at a time. You may also choose to soak in a warm bathtub to ease achy, stiff joints.

Strengthening and Mobility Exercises

Staying active can help RA patients improve their symptoms. By getting up and moving every day you can reduce stiffness and swelling in the joints, while improving joint mobility and range of motion. Before beginning any kind of exercise program it’s important to consult with our Brandon, FL, doctors to find out what kinds of activities will improve your symptoms. Some exercises can make RA worse. Beneficial exercises include low-impact aerobics like swimming, as well as strength training and balance training and reconditioning.


Most people with RA will require medication to slow the progression of the disease. The most commonly used type of medications for RA is a disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug. Patients may be prescribed more than one of these types of medications, and these medications work by preventing the immune system from attacking and destroying the joints. Medications such as these may also be combined with biological treatments, which targets the immune system’s response directly to prevent damage to the joints.

Some patients with RA may also find relief from their symptoms through alternative therapies such as:

  • Meditation
  • Massage therapy
  • Acupuncture
  • Aromatherapy

If you are experiencing worsening joint pain and stiffness, it’s important that you see a doctor right away to find out what’s going on. With the proper care, the medical team at Biggers Family Medicine in Brandon, FL, can help slow the progression of RA. Call us today at (813) 655-4646.

April 13, 2020
Category: Cardiovascular

You have the ability to protect against heart disease by making healthy choices.

Despite the fact that millions of Americans have some form of heart disease, there is comfort in knowing that you have the ability to reduce your risk for heart disease through simple lifestyle adjustments. Leading a healthy lifestyle can greatly improve your heart health, and our Brandon, FL, primary care physicians Drs. Joel & Elizabeth Biggers can help you make changes to your lifestyle now to prevent heart disease from happening to you. Here are three steps you can take right now to greatly improve your heart health,

Quit Smoking

If you smoke or uses tobacco products one of the best things you can do for your health, particularly your heart health, is to quit. Even secondhand smoke has the ability to increase your risk for heart disease. As soon as you quit smoking, your risk for heart disease begins to drop, and your risk will continue to decrease over the years. If you’re having a hard time quitting on your own, our Brandon, FL, doctors can recommend certain programs or products that can help you quit smoking for good.

Get Up and Moving Daily

It’s important that everyone gets at least 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity most days of the week. Staying fit and active can greatly lower your risk for heart disease. Plus, exercise can also boost endorphins, which is known to improve mood. Regular exercise can also reduce your risk for diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. If you’re not sure how to begin exercising, talk with your doctor first.

Eat a Healthy, Heart-Friendly Diet

What you eat can also have a major impact on your overall health, particularly your heart. Many people follow a Mediterranean-style diet because it’s chock full of healthy fats like olive oil and nuts, as well as lots of vegetables, whole grains, lean meat (like fish and chicken) and low-fat dairy. Processed foods are often high in sodium and sugar, which can have a serious impact on your heart. Foods that also contain a lot of saturated and trans fats such as red meat, fast food and desserts can increase your risk for heart disease.

If you are looking for strategies to protect your heart, the medical team at Biggers Family Medicine in Brandon, FL, is here to help. No matter how at-risk you are for heart disease, leading a healthy lifestyle will improve your heart health and overall wellbeing. Call us today at (813) 655-4646 to learn more.