Health Tips

Coconut Oil Comes Out of the Closet !

Published on Monday, 29 April 2013

Coconut Oil has been barred from the pantry for many many years. There was a stigma on it because doctors showed concern that coconut oil is 94% saturated fat and everyone knows that saturated fat is bad for your heart. Oh how wrong and how long these ''experts'' were duped for the last 60 years! If you have read my blog postings you would already know that I love saturated fat. I think it is a super food. I exposed this hoax in my blog posting on the 18th of April in 2010 entitled; ''ANCEL KEYS & his Phony Fat Myth !'' This unethical bum used epidemiological studies to prove that fat was bad. He ''cherry-picked'' his facts and his promotion of a diet low in fat and high in carbohydrates won over the American Heart Foundation in the 1960s and the rest is a sorry history of diabetes, cancer and an epidemic of world-wide obesity.

Saturated fat has been made the scape goat for disease. Scientists have looked down the barrel of a microscope and victimised this totally natural fat that has been in the human diet for at least 200,000 years. The reality of coconut oil is that it has short chain and medium chain fatty acids which means that these fats have the ability to be antiviral, anti-fungus and antibacterial. Placed on the skin, coconut oil does wonders for any eczema, infections and even fungus of the nails. Taken internally it has been known to keep the colon healthy, inhibits yeast and candida growth and feeds the body with instant energy. This energy process does not use the enzyme system of the body but is used by the liver for instant fuel and satiety from hunger.

There are three ways that we get saturated fat in our diet, in my opinion two are healthy and one I would never consume knowingly. Numbers 1 and 2 are the best": ( 1 ) Plant based Saturated Fat -- Coconut Oil  ( 2 ) Animal based Saturated Fat  -- Butter, Cream, Meat  ( 3 ) Hydrogenated Oil Saturated Fat -- Margarine, Vegetable Sgortening, Vegetable Fat, Hydrogenated and Fractionated Vegetable Oil. Coconut Oil has one important asset: it contains Lauric Acid -- which in the body has strong immune boosting effects. (Another high source of Lauric Acid is mother's milk). However, coconut oil does not have essential fatty acids so using other sources of fat would be a prudent rule. Remember coconut is not just oil. Coconut water is pure health, especially for fitness buffs and athletes and better than those ghastly modern coloured drinks we are offered today. NOTE: I am referring to virgin coconut oil as compared to hydrogenated coconut oil -- which incidently was how coconut oil came to earn its bad reputation in the first place because the research was done on the inferior hydrogenated (processed) oil.

Preventing Back Pain & Health Problems !

Published on Sunday, 17 March 2013

From smart  Spinep h ones to com puters to iPads, our beloved electronic devices are crippling our postu re and contributing to weight gain, back pain and joint problems. Fortunately, there are a few strategies and exercises I can give you -- such as changing your position often and ''reorganizing'' your torso -- that can address a lot of these potential problems and keep you more fit and properly aligned. As miserable asback pain is, that may be the least of your worries if you spend a significant portion of your time on your duff. Sitting may actually cut years off your life. Lack of exercise is sitting's evil accomplice. The more you sit, the less your body wants to move.

According to a study in the British Medical Journal, reducing the average time you spend sitting to less than three (3) hours per day could increase your life expectancy by two years, which is a significant decrease from the 4.5 to 5 hours per day the average westerner now spends on a chair or sofa. An analysis of 18 studies showed that peoplke who sat for the longest periods of time were twice as likely to have diabetes or heart disease, compared to those who sat the least. Sitting has actually joined smoking and obesity as an important risk factor for chronic disease and premature death. According to an Australian study, sitting time is a predictor of weight gain among women, even after controlling for calories consumed and physical activity like exercise. It suggested a regular fitness regimen might be insufficient to counteract the effects of excessive sedentary habits, especially if the fitness workout has you in equipment that puts you back in a seated position like a bike, rowing and weightlifting.

The basic remedy is to get up and do a few simple exercises to help neutralize the occupational hazard of working in unnatural positions for extended periods. Of course a complete Chiropractic Spinal Exam will reveal how much can be done to improve the situation structurally than we can go on to correcting foot, pelvis, torso, shoulder and neck positions as these are all required for good posture and balance. For example, a great deal of carpal tunnel issues do not result solely from improper wrist position, but from rotation of the shoulder. The forward rotation of the shoulder is directly connected to the position of your lower back and pelvis. The result is symptoms within the wrist that cannot be fixed at the wrist.

I recommend a five-step series of body reorganizations or realignments, done in the following sequence:

1)  Stand up with your feet pointing straight forward or slightly inward.  (2)  You can realign the pelvis by simply squeezing your butt tightly while internally rotating your feet 15 degrees (big toes towards each other), roll feet to the outside of the arch and try to pull the back of calves together wthout the heels moving.  (3)  Create some tension in your core by slightly tightening your abdominals (not extreme tightening - just to 20% of your max.  (4)  Correct your shoulder position by externally rotating your shoulders and arms (rolling your shoulders back), which brings your shoulder blades closer together, your chest up and forward and your tumbs pointing away from your body.  (5)  While keeping your shoulders externally rotated, turn your hands back to neutral, so that your thumbs are now facing forward.

These basic alignments can be applied no matter what position you're in -- whether you are standing, sitting, kneeling or anything in between. In case you're wondering, there is little evidence for any benefit from using a balance ball for your chair. The apparatus you sit on is far less important than the positions in which you teach your body to sit.  Practice these exercises regularly, change positions often -- at least every 20-30 minutes and you can have a more good health and wellbeing.

Chiropractic & Exercise Better For Neck Pain!

Published on Sunday, 17 February 2013

A new study shows Exercises and Chiropractic care can be helpful for neck pain. According to the study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine and funded by the National Institutes of Health, medication is not the best option for treating neck pain and its subsequent association with headaches. After following neck-pain patients for 12 weeks, those who used a chiropractor and exercise were more than twice as likely to pain free compared to those who took medication. 

It is estimated that 70% of people will experience neck pain at some point in their lives but research into effective treatments is surprisingly limited. And lets not forget previous research proves that 80% of all headaches stem from vertebral misalignments in the neck.  

The researchers stated, ''Combined with exercise the chiropractic approach often can lead to improved posture, range of motion and functionality.'' 

Exercise helps to prevent neck pain through a number of mechanisms including strengthening key supportive muscles and restoring flexibility, thereby maintaining their chiropractic corrections. Not surprisingly, repetitive strain injuries have become increasingly common as so many people spend most of their work days sitting in front of computers. Aside from computer work many types of neck pain can be traced back to poor posture at work or during your commuting time. It's a vicious cycle as prolonged poor sitting posture leads to neck pain and once neck pain develops and pulls out vertebrae, it makes your posture even worse.

Research in the Journal of Applied Physiology found that specific exercises helped people with neck pain improve their ability to maintain a neutral upright cervical posture during prolonged sitting and break their poor posture/neck pain cycle. I have personally found that therapeutic massage added to the program of exercise and chiro-care offers clinically effective improvement as a whole. 

More Evidence Vitamin D Can Reduce Autism Risk !

Published on Sunday, 20 January 2013

Children and adolescents living in the higher latitudes of their countries with higher levels of ultraviolet B (UVB) exposure are much less likely to develop autism than their counterparts living in regions with lower levels of solar exposure, new research shows. William Grant, PhD, of the Sunlight, Nutrition and Health Research Center, in San Francisco, California and John Cannell, MD, of the Vitamin D Council, in San Luis Obispo, California, found that these children and  adolescents living in areas with highher solar UVB doses in summer or early autumn had half the rate of autism as their counterparts living in areas with the lowest UVB doses.

''Summer is when people make the most vitamin D from UVB, and we found that the more UVB dose in summer and fall in the young child, the lower the prevalence of autism,''  Dr Grant told Medscape Medical News. ''Both latitude and UVB were found to be related to autism prevalence in this current ecologic study of ours'', he added. The study was published in the October-December issue of Dermato-Edocrinology.

Another important point the authors brought out was that the literature supports the idea that vitamin D deficiency before and/during pregnancy is an important risk factor for autism as well. ''Vitamin D can correct for sporadic mutations,''  Dr Grant noted, ''so it weeds out the bad genes in the fetus and encourages the good ones.''   With this new suggestive evidence that solar UVB production of vitamin D is an important factor in reducing autism risk, Dr Grant advises that pregnant women take enough vitamin D3 to raise serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations to 30 - 40 ng/ml.

Gene Stubbs, MD, professor emeritus at Oregon Health and Science University, Portland, told Medscape News that more work needs to be done to lock-in-the-proof about vitamin D's role in autism in which this study revealed. Dr Stubbs also noted that one recent study in which vitamin D during pregnancy was associated with an increased risk for the child having significant language difficulties (Pediatrics 2012; 129:485-93). He elaborated; ''Animal studies of vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy have shown that low levels have a definate effect on how the brain develops and the same seems to be true for humans.''  Dr Stubbs is now in the early stages of evaluating whether vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy decreases the incidence of recurrent autism in women who have previously given birth to an autistic child. So mothers-to-be try to get gentle exposures of sunshine during your pregnancy and then also for your infant and growing adolescent.

Is Obesity Caused by Bacterial Infection ?

Published on Saturday, 29 December 2012

Your body is loaded with bacteria, of bith good and bad varieties. In fact, about 100 trillion bacteria live inside you, which is more than 10 times the number of cells you have in your body!  Now, Chinese researchers have identified a bacteria which may cause obesity, according to a new paper suggesting diets that alter the presence of these microbes in the human gut could combat the condition. Researchers in Shanghai's Jiaotong University, found that mice bred to be resistant to obesity even when fed high-fat foods became excessively overweight when injected with a certain kind of human bacteria and subjected to a rich diet.

The bacteriun -- known as Enterbactor -- had been linked with obesity after being found in high quantities in the gut of a morbidly obese human volunteer, said the report written by the researchers. The mice were injected with the bacterium for up to 10 weeks as part of the experiment. The experiments showed that the bacterium ''causatively contributes to the development of obesity in humans,'' according to the paper published in the peer-reviewed journal of the International Society of Microbial Ecology.

A human patient lost over 66 pounds (30 kilograms) in nine weeks after being place on a diet of ''whole grains, traditional Chinese medicinal foods and probiotics,'' which reduced the bacterium's presence in the patient's gut to ''undetectable'' levels, the paper explained. One of the report's authors, Zhao Liping, lost 44 pounds (20 kilos) in two years after adopting a diet of fermented probiotic foods to adjust the balance of bacteria in his gut, the American magazine Science said in an article this year relating to his previous research. Cultured foods like yogurt and fermented vegetables are excellent sources provide they are not pasteurized.

Zhao's work on the role of bacteria in obesity is inspired by traditional Chinese beliefs that the gut is the ''the foundation for human health,'' Science magazine elaborated. The scientists wrote in their latest paper that they ''hope to identify more such obesity-inducing bacteria specific to various human populations in future research.'' Obesity worldwide has more than doubled since 1980, according to the World Health Organisation, with more than 500 millions adults and uncounted children suffering from the condition.

Lose Your Teeth, Lose Your Mind??

Published on Friday, 27 April 2012

bad teeth

Once again the importance of good dental health is in the news and now may hold the key to staying mentally sharp while growing old.

In a multiparticipant study, researchers at Boston University found that tooth loss and gum disease were both closely linked to cognitive decline. Each tooth lost per decade put subjects at 8 to 10 percent greater risk of doing poorly on standard cognitive tests.

Researchers also found that those who had more cavities were also were more likely to perform badly on tests. Inflammation from dental problems may be the cause of the mental decline found in the study, says Professor Elizabeth Kay, who led the research, which was published in the Journal of the Geriatic Society.

"Periodontal disease and cavities are infectious diseases that introduce diseases that introduce inflammatory proteins into the blood stream," Kay says. "There has been a lot of evidence in the past 5 years indicating that these inflammatory proteins are also at the core of arterial heart disease and not cholesterol. Now there's a lot of circumstantial evidence reporting that inflammation raises your risk of cognitive decline and it could be that specifically gum inflammaton is one of the sources."

Ed. Note: That should be all the reason to not only brush and floss daily but have your teeth checked and cleaned professionally on a regular basis.

Statins Increase Risk of Prostate Cancer!

Published on Sunday, 26 February 2012

Statins increase risk of prostate cancer

A just-released study at the Cancer Research Centre, Albert Einstein College and National Institute for Health, they found a significant increase in the incidence of aggressive prostate cancer in obese men who used statins. Dr Russell Blaylock, renowned neurosurgeon and editor of the Blaylock Wellness Report says, "Statins are more likely to raise your risk of developing prostate cancer...or any cancer...because they are powerful immune suppressants." He went on to say, "One other well-conducted study noted that statins affect the type of immunity that's needed to suppress prostate cancer while another study found that as long as you stay on statins, cell-mediated immunity, which is your most powerful immunity against cancer, is affected and increases the risk of developing a number of different ypes of cancers." In fact, statin drugs are such powerful immune suppressors that transplant surgeons recommend that their transplant patients be on them to help prevent rejection of the transplant.

Amazingly, just a few months before, a study made headlines claiming that cholesterol-lowering drugs also lower a man's risk of dying from prostate cancer ! So why do studies researching the same topics sometimes have such different results? The answer could lie in the profitability of drugs. When a study is released that points out dangers of certain drugs, according to Dr. Blaylock, pharmaceutical companies will pay for articles to be written that say just the opposite: "There's a company that writes the articles based on a phony study and goes to university professors with impressive credentials and asks them to put their names on it. Many of them do, because the company is going to make sure the study ends up in a top journal, like the New England Journal of Medicine, and the doctor wants to be associated with such a high-class publication."

Practicing physicians don't have a clue this is going on. The article is beautifully written, in a trusted joiurnal and they are impressed and trust the phoney facts. Dr Blaylock points out, "Even though the New England Journal has started policy which states that a conflict of interest be disclosed, a lot of authors just ignore it. The journal doesn't enforce the policy, and in many cases, if you want to check on the conflicts of interest, you have to click on another site to find it. Most doctors aren't going to do that. Dr Blaylock finishes by saying, "Let's face it, this latest 'statins decreases prostate cancer' study is just another attempt by the pharmaceutical companies to get gullible doctors to write more prescriptions for statins." It's time to warn your gullible doctor.

Tips for a Good Night's Sleep

Published on Sunday, 29 January 2012

Tired woman

Sleeplessness is a major problem in the industrialised world. This chronic sleeping disorder affects millions and all ages. In response, drug companies have developed drugs to treat sleep disorders that produce side effects, such as dependence, as well as memory lapses, irritability and sleepwalking. So let's outline and eliminate some basic sleep destroyers:

a) Don't work on a computer an hour before retiring. This can inhibit the ability to enter the vital REM sleep period.
b) Reduce all forms of light in the bedroom. Even a clock or clock/radio dial can be too bright for getting to sleep. Turn it away from you.
c) Don't eat heavy or drink coffee or alcohol at least 2 hours before going to bed.
d) Of course avoid any arguments and emotional or scarey entertainment watching.

Now here are some natural things you can try to get your body and mind prepared for a good sleep:

1) Have a glass of milk with a turkey sandwich a half hour before retiring. Why? It has been known for many years now that both milk and turkey meat are high in tryptophin and has a calming effect on the nervous system.

2) Melatonin. This natural substance, one of the brain's most protective antioxidants, is secreted from the pineal gland. Taken as you prepare for sleep, it will gently tip you over the slumber edge. It is short acting, so morning fatigue is not a problem. My business traveler patients use it effectively to combat "jet lag".

3) Magnesium/calcium. Take a magnesium and calcium supplement at bedtime, since both reduce brain activity and induce drowsiness.

4) Chinese skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis). This herb contains powerful anti-inflammatory extracts. I t will calm the nervous system, make you slightly drowsy and allow you to fall asleep quickly. Most people feel well-rested the next morning.

5) Theanine. is an amino acid extracted from green tea and it has been found to induce restful sleep in most people with no morning hangover. If used, it should not be taken with skullcap.

6) Ibuprofen or Neurophen. I have found either of these to be of great benefit for very resistant cases of insomnia, but avoid if you have an active ulcer or gastritis.

The Case Against Drinking 6-8 Glasses of Water

Published on Friday, 30 December 2011

Young woman drinking water

Dr Margaret McCartney, a general practioner from Scotland, says that the common health advice that you should drink six to eight glasses of water each day is "thoroughly a load of nonesense". She argues that it is propagated by bottled water companies out to make big profits. In her article, McCarney quoted experts who say that drinking too much fluid can cause hyponatremia (low sodium levels in the blood) which causes your brain cells to swell, leading to serious neurological symptoms.

Many fail to realize how crucial an issue this is. It is my strong belief that the single most powerful intervention the majority of Australians can make for their physical health would be to stop drinking all sidas and juices and replace them with health promoting pure water. This is such an important issue due to the fact that so many people are becoming over weight and the number one source of calories is sugar from soda. Needless to say that diet sodas are EVEN WORSE! It's all a matter oif getting the fluid/water replacement issue right.

The truth is, your body will tell you when it's time to replenish your water supply, because once your body has lost between 1 or 2% of its total water, your thirst mechanism lets you know that it's time to drink some water. However, some people, especially the older generation, could have a low functioning thirst mechanism that will allow a serious state of dehydration to develop before anyone notices. There is a sure-fire way of assessing your fluid needs before trouble arises.

The colour of your urine will help you determone whether or not you might need to drink more. As long as you are not taking Vitamin B2 (found in most multi-vitamins) which turns your urine bright yellow, then your urine should be very light-coloured yellow. If it is deep, dark yellow then you are likely not drinking enough water. Also, if your urine is scant or if you haven't urinated for several hours, that too is an idication that you're not drinking enough. (Based on the results of a few studies, a healthy person urinates about 7 or 8 times a day.)

Remember to answer your thirst with pure water though, rather than sodas, coffee, sugary fruit juices and high caffinated Pep-up drinks. Both coffee and energy booster drinks are high in caffeine, which acts as a diuretic that will dehydrate you even further. Worse yet, sodas, fruit juices and other sweetened beverages are primary sources of Fructose which will only deteriorate your health. An excellent option when you're sweating profusely is coconut water. It's one of the highest sources of electrolytes known to man, not like most "sports" drinks that contain as much as two-thirds the sugar of sodas along with artificial flavours and food colouring, none of which contribute to optimal health.

Breast Cancer Risk in Alcohol

Published on Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Young women drinking alcohol

Most recent research indicates that a few alcoholic drinks a week can cut the risk of many diseases and is good for a woman's general health, but breast cancer appears to be an exception. A Havard Medical School study found that consuming just three to six alcoholic drinks a week increases risk. Although an increased chance of breast cancer has been asociated with higher alcohol consumption in previous studies, the effects of low-level drinking wasn't understood.

The study, included 105,986 women enrolled in the Nurses' Health Study. They were followed from 1980 until 2008 and their drinking habits -- including quantity, frequency and age of consumption were evaluated as early adults and with eight additional assessments through the years.

During the follow-up period, there were 7690 cases of invasive breast cancer diagnosed among the participants. Analysis of data indicated that a low level of alcohol consumption (the equivalent to 3-6 glasses of wine per week) was associated with a 15% increased risk of breast cancer. Worse still, women who consumed at least 2 drinks each day raised their risk of breast cancer by a whooping 51% when compared with women who never consumed alcohol !

It seems the risks remained, regardless of the stage of life the alcohol was consumed (from ages 18-40 years+) Binge drinking, a common phenomena in young women recently, was also associated with increased risk, even when cumulative alcohol totals were taken into consideration. The authors acknowledged that although the exact mechanism for the association between alcohol consumption and breast cancer is not known, one probable explanation may involve alcohol's effects on circulating estrogen levels.

"Our results highlight the importance of considering lifetime exposure when evaluating the effect of alcohol, and probably other dietary factors, on the carcinigenesis process." wrote the researchers. "However, an individual will need to weigh the now obvious risks of light to moderate alcohol use on breast cancer development against the beneficial effects on cardiovascular disease to make the best personal choice regarding one's drinking."