Published on Sunday, 21 August 2011
An analysis has found that there is a 30% increased risk of myocardial infarction for taking 500mg or more of elemental calcium. This could mean that the use of supplements to "prevent" osteoporosis must now be reconsidered. The practice may be causing an epidemic of cardiovascular calcification, hyertonicity of the cardiac tissue, arrhythmias, and heart attacks both through heart muscle cramping and destabilized plaque and subsequent occlusion. Check to see if your GP or Cardiologist knows about this new revelation.
According to the, as reported by GREEN MED INFO: Calcium supplements....increase the risk of cardiovascular events, especially myocardial infarction. A reassessment of the role of calcium supplements in osteoporosis management is warranted.
For many years, the general medical industry has been pushing calcium supplements as your primary form of "insurance" against osteoporosis, reciting the mantra "calcium builds strong bones and teeth", far and wide. Calcium is added to everything these days, from pasteurized milk to baby formula, orange juice and boxed foods like breakfast cereals. And certainly, your body does need calcium. In fact, calcium from whole foods may even extend your lifespan.
BUT IT NOW SEEMS THIS IS NOT THE CASE FOR CALCIUM SUPPLEMENTS!
The belief that calcium is what builds strong bones is absolutely ingrained in our society, but has no basis in reality---calcium is but ONE of the many minerals your body needs for building strong bones. Calcium spplements have demonstrated little benefit, and now here is one more piece of research suggesting they may increase your risk for a cardiovascular event. Shocking!
This is just another example of marketing madness taking precedence over a deeper understanding of human biology and why we need well-designed scientific studies before making blanket statements about any intervention. I may add that this isn't the first study to suggest your calcium pills may be doing more harm than good. TAKE HEED!
Published on Wednesday, 27 July 2011
We've all heard it: "laughter is the best medicine." And it may very well be true! Laughter not only feels good, but evidence suggests that laughter can reduce pain, lower stress, improve circulation, protect the heart and even strengthen the immune system. It's been shown that laughter can also help diabetics to process glucose. While a moderate guffaw excercises the abdominal muscles and lungs, a sustained "belly laugh" can stimulate a heart rate similar to that experienced during aerobic excercise on a treadmill or rowing machine. Amazing!
Although the healing power of laughter has long been recognized by health professionals, the specific mechanism by which laughter enables healing remains unknown. That having been said, it in no way diminishes its powerful health effects. It's been found that regular laughter may wind up being as vital for heart health as excercise, good diet and a functional nervous system. Additional studies have shown that laughter can help increase circulation by allowing the inner lining of the blood vessels to relax and expand.
Laughter is a natural physiological process - not a learned behavior - that can occur in infants as young as a few weeks old. It is an expression of happiness or joy and may have been the first form of human communication that eventually evolved into language. Giggles produce endorphins, which in turn produce a feeling of well-being and may have originally developed as a response to the passing of danger...a sort of tension release mechanism. Laughter is an emotional balancing mechanism that allows us to temper the dreadful things in our lives with those that are considerably lighter.
Now laughter therapy and humor therapy are slowly earning mainstream status as part of a larger group of healing practices called "mind-body treatment". According to the Association of Therapeutic Humor, since the 1970's, it was found that laughter can be used as a complementary treatment to healing or coping, whether physical, emotional, cognitive, social or spiritual. Many hospitals are now having clowns circulate through their wards visiting patients. They may spend as much as 15 minutes with a patient, telling jokes or doing magic tricks. Hospital staff have noted that these visits often have an uplifting effect on struggling patients.
Dementia patients also benefit from the power of humor. A nursing home study introduced clowns and mimes to the residents and found that dementia patients not only recognized and responded to humor, but also experienced a reduction in irritabilty and agitation; their level of engagement with others was greater when the humor was employed. What's more, laughter is contagious. Even severe dementia patients benifited by simply hearing a joke and being in the company of others who were laughing. Guess that means for our own good health we should be watching more Funniest Home Videos and Wipeout and the like!
Published on Sunday, 15 May 2011
According to the latest statistics compliled by the Heart Association, cancer surpasses heart disease as the top killer among people between the ages of 45-75. Cancer rates for various types are on the rise an envirnomental/lifestyle factors are increasingly being pinpointed rather than genetic origins as the culprits, such as:
+ Pesticdes and other chemical exposures
+ Pharmaceutical drugs
+ Processed and artificial foods (plus chemicals in the packaging)
+ Wireless technologies and medical diagnostic radiation exposure
+ Obesity, stress and poor sleeping habits
+Lack of sunshine exposure and use of sunscreens
This is not an all-inclusive list, of course, but as the research into the health of our ancient ancestors shows, cancer is not a "natural" disease and genetics are not the primary factor. Cancer is, by and large, the tragic result of humans veering too far off course---avoiding health sustaining diets and activities, while embracing a highly unnatural lifestyle and continually dousing your insides asnd outsides with excess chemicals.
According to Professor Rosalie David, co-author of a recently published study stated: "Tumors were rare until recent times when pollution and poor diet became issues, our review of mummies, fossils and classical literature found." Dismissing the argument that the ancient Egyptians didn't live long enough to develop cancer, the reseasrchers pointed out that other age-related disease such as hardening of the arteries and brittle bones did occur. Professor David adds, "There is nothing in the natural environment that can cause cancer. So it has to be a man-made disease....from pollution and changes to our diet and lifestyle."
The good news is that science is finally starting to catch up with common sense and studies are emerging showing the powerful potential of food and a pollution-free lifestyle prevent and treat cancer. I cannot stress enough how important it is to take this information to heart and apply it in your own life. Don't wait any further for more "definitive scientific proof". By these facts into your lifestyle choices you will improve your future good health and wellbeing.
Published on Thursday, 07 April 2011
A new study has confirmed the connection between early paracetamol use and asthma, as well as finding a link to allergies.
"Observational studies have suggested a link between paracetamol and asthma," says Professor Julian Crane of the University of Otago, in New Zealand. He and his colleagues have included studies with enormous sample sizes. However, these relied on parents' memories of when they first gave their children paracetamol and how often.
Crane's researchers looked at 505 infants and 915 children aged over 5-6 years. "The major finding is that children who used paraceamol before the age of 15 months (90%) were more than 3 times as likely to become sensitized to allergens and twice as likely to develop symptoms of asthma at 6 years old than children not using paracetamol," Crane said.
While the link to asthma has been reported in previous studies, Crane says that allergies have not been reported, either because studies did not look for them or they weren't specifically designed to find the association.
"Paracetamol should be used in some circumstances," Crane says, "particularly to reduce high fever. However, at the moment we give it out too freely and to often for aches and pains and that's what puts the body's system over the edge." He suggests that this should stop, at least for young children.
Published on Monday, 28 February 2011
As many of you know by now, I am always searching health journals, newsletters and the internet for the latest cutting-edge news on natural health; mostly to inform and many times to warn you about health matters in general. Many times in the past my readers have been quite surprised when the information I publish comes up in news reports or magazines six months later. Here's more on my previous postings on vitamin D3 with up-to-the-minute information on Asthma.
Growing evidence shows that low vitamin D3 levels in children may substantially increase their risk of Asthma and worsen their symptoms. This seems to be a consequance of the over blown use of the Slip-Slop-Slap campaign by the Cancer Society by not taking into account the need for everyone to have some bare skin sun exposure every day if possible so theh skin can make vitamin D naturally.
In a very recent study, lead author Dr Daniel Searing and his colleagues at the Division of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in the United States examined asthmatic children up to the age of 18 and found that 47% had insufficent levels of vitamin D3 and 17% were fully deficient. Black children had significantly higher vitamin D3 deficiency rates (86%).
The study found a number of interesting findings. For example, alergy markers such as immunoglobulin were inversely correlated with vitamin D levels. That is, those with blood tests showing very active inflammation had lower vitamin D levels. Researchers also found that children with lowest lung function also had the lowest vitamin D3 levels. It appears that vitamin D3 enhanced the inflammation-suppressing effects of corticosteroids, normally used in servere Asthma cases. It has been found in other studies that inflammation has a real role in many diseases.
I would contend that the Minium Daily Requirement (MDR) considered normal is too low. Perhaps if it were close to double the amount we would see less ASthma altogether and have less need for harmful drugs like steroids.
Excitotoxins in the diet --- such as MSG, hydrolyzed proteins, preservatives and flavouring -- have been shown to significantly worsen Astma attacks and should be avoided. Studies have actually shown that the lining of the air passages in the lung have numerous lutamte receptors. Our young people live on junk foods filled with exitotoxic additives and with the lack of sun exposure, the incidence of Asthma in children has increased 400% over the past two decades. We can turn that number around with a better diet and more vitamin D3.
Published on Monday, 10 January 2011
Twenty-five years ago today, the Brisbane Courier-Mail newspaper's front page headlined an article, "Mums Warned on Babie's Sleep Posture". It quoted me, as the Public Edcation Officer of the Australian Chiropractic Association, giving a warning to mothers not to put their babies to sleep on their tummys as a way to avoid the possibility of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. That story certainly put me as the cat among the pigeons!
It had me start a year long crusade to get this vital information to be taken seriously. At first the ridicule of the medical profession, including pediatricians, orthopedists and neurologists (who should've known better) was vehement. The newspapers were full of their derogatory comments about my expertise and questioned chiropractic's knowledge in this matter. In spite of this, many invitations to speak on this tragic epidemic on radio programs in every state came quicly as my information showed credibility. By then I was invited to do a spot on the Today Show with Steve Leibmann who made me face the President of the Australian Medical Society. The result was me proving that chiropractic's 90+ years of experience qualified it to comment on anything spinal and/or neurological. In fact by the end of the year I was called many to comment on various other spinal health issues.
I think it is important to tell you how this observation of mine on SIDS came about. It started in a somewhat round-about way in 1984 when I was encouraged by my colleagues in the Queensland Spinal Study Group to do research and write a paper on the "Cervical (neck) Spine and the Vertebral Artery in Health And Disease". They wanted to advance our profession's knowledge of this vital segment of the spine and assess any possibl;e dangers in adjusting the neck and thought I was the man for the job. I had a busy practice but I was keen to liiterally go back to school and do research in the university library setting. There was no google then.
After 9 months I was ready to present my research paper to the Spinal Study Group. I was delighted to get an enthusiastic response to this new knowledge and doubly proud to be invited to speak at the upcoming Annual National Coference of our Association. After that, further kudos for my paper elicted invitations to speak at the New Zealand Chiropractor's Annual Conference and then at the HOLY GRAIL for chiropractors, the International Spinal Conference held yearl;y in Las Vegas. After that whirlwind year I returned to my somewhat neglected but still busy practice.
This is where Serendipity struck me. At the time I had two padiatric nurses as patients both of which had neck problems. I repeated my usual advice to them, NOT to sleep on their stomachs to avoid further damage to their neck joints and nerves. To which they mentioned that they tell mothers to lay their newborn babies that way to sleep. With my enhanced knowledge of the cervical spine and its blood and nerve distribution to key centres in the brain I shockingly asked, "How long have you been doing this and WHY?"
They proceeded to inform me that sometime in 1979, paediatricians invoked a rule that, to avoid choking from regurgitation, babies must lie on their tummys. This was the year that SIDS started to become noticed and became more prevalent during the early 1980's. It was an Eureka moment for me. Here was a direct neurological link to the baby's cranial breathing control centre. With this terrible situation growing every year, I needed to stop this erroneous and dangerous practice.
As my association's Public Education Officer I called a special meeting of the Executive Board and propsed that our profession should go public with this finding. Not all agreed, thinking that we should do more research on this matter before commiting to public annoucements. My arguement was that chiropractors have always known stomach sleeping was bad and especially that would apply to babies who couldn't turn over. Besides, what better time to express our fears and warning people now with my internationally accepted research on the neck could be used as ammunition. So...with a "better-you-than-me" attiutude they voted that I could make a warning statement in the ACA's name and hopefully reduce the heartache for parents. The medics were slow to activate this warning but chiropractors world-wide told every patient and the incidence on SIDS slowly declined. As they say, "the rest is history!"
Published on Monday, 27 December 2010
A new study reports a protective effect against the risk of sudden cardiac death in men and women who consume higher levels of dietary magnesium. According to the article in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition: "Given that most people do not meet the recommended daily allowance for magnesium, increasing intake of magnesium presents a potential opportunity for sudden cardiac death prevention in the general population."
You don't hear much about magnesium, except in our office, where we have being pushing for higher intake among our patients for years. This goes as well as for Vitamin D, which is just now coming into its own a a serious supplement, especially with the overuse of the Slip, Slap, Slop campaign creating severe under exposure to the health-giving rays of the sun. One reason could be because these two natural elements serve so many functions it's hard to corral.
Magnesium is responsible for more than 300 biochemnical reactions in your body; Like a few here....
+ Creation of ATP which is the energy molecules of your body
+ Aids action of your heart muscle
+ Regulation of blood sugar levels
+ Proper formation of bones and teeth
+ Relaxation of blood vessels
+ Promotion of proper bowel function
Unfortunately. magnesium is not and has not being properly utilized by conventional medicine.
High blood pressure is yet another health problem that responds favourably to magnesium. According to a study published last year, the mineral significntly decreased both systolic and diastolic blood pressure in those diagnosed with hypertension in just 12 weeks. This lends further support to the immense role this mineral plays in your health. If you decide to supplement with magnesium it is important to understand that its complementary partner is calcium. So ideally you should have a source for both. If you are having diary though there is typically no reason for oral calcium supplementation. I advise you should use twice as much elemental magnesium relative to calcium. This ratio seems to work quite well for most people.
If you suspect you are low in magnesium. the best way is to consume this mineral is through organically bound magnesium. which is found in organic green, leafy vegetables. Other excellent foods high in magnesium are:
+ Some beans and peas
As a general rule, to get as much magnesium as possible in your diet, eat plenty of these foods I mentioned above every day. Juicing your vegetables is an excellent option to ensure a tasty way you'll be getting enough of them in your diet
Published on Thursday, 28 October 2010
Someone needs to make this organisation accountable! Their latest news release a few weeks ago has me and anyone knowing the truth of the matter, ticked-off. Their Media Release which can be viewed on the URL http://tinyurl.com/3ajvgn3 is entited "To Avoid Trans Fat, Avoid Butter". It seems they are all in an ill-informed tizzy because popular cooking programs, celebrity chefs and foodie magazines are all using butter in their recipes and butter sales are up over 9% in the past year. So this Media Release is asking Australian not to eat butter because it has trans fat and saturated fats and to eat margarine instead.
Those of you who have been regular readers of this Health Tips page have read last April the article Ancel Keyes and His Phony Fat Myth. If you had read it, you would now know more than this supposed scientific foundation. Their stupid advice to switch from a natural fat to a phony substitute is down right irresponsible. The public needs to know the truth about margarine. From its conception in the 1930s it has had a trans fat percentage of between 14 - 35% ! The Heart Foundation had given this product (which is a couple molecules away from becoming a plastic) their tick of approval for many decades despite evidence against trans fats since 1978! Their ignorance and attitude makes me believe that the Australian public's health is not in their best interest and we should start to wonder what is behind some of their marketing strategies. Perhaps it is the almighty dollar. I seem to remember McDonalds getting a tick for one of their hamburgers after a $330,000 donation.
In actuality, butter has a small amount of trans fat occurring naturally and reacts in the body differently than a chemically produced man-made trans fats, or the partially hydrogenation of vegetable oil. Butter also contains saturated fat but this is not the enemy: that was totally misrepresented fo 50 years as the Curse of Cholesterol. Fat is important for our health but we must eat the right type --the good fat. It's really easy. All fats from nature, like nuts, seeds, avocado, olives, eggs, butter, coconut and anything extracted from these foods in a healthy way is good fat. A bad fat is a fat that has been manipulated, changed and contorted in some way in a chemical laboratory.
The Heart Foundation tick of approval adorns foods that aren't even foods, but rather a bunch of chemicals disguised as food but as long as they are low fat, low salt, high fibre, low calorie they get that tick. Just check out the ingredients (not the nutritional label) on the following and see if you really think they are good for your health. Kellogg's Just Right, ProActive margarine, Healthy Choice meals, Farmer's Own milk, diet yoghurts and Birds Eye Chicken & Vegie Patties, just to name a few.
The ay I see it....we need to move away from the old Margarine-is-Better argument and eat real food! With new evidence over the past 7 years steering away from the link between cholesterol, saturated fat and heart disease and more towards other factors, then I think that the Heart Foundation needs to smarten up, jettison those 50 years of Junk Science and let the public know the real facts...or reputation will be totally discredited.
Published on Monday, 30 August 2010
Vitamin D, the "sunshine" vitamin, does a lot more than help keep bones strong -- scientists are finding that it impacts all aspects of our health. Vitamin D can be obtained from exposure to sunlight, vitamin supplements (D-3 is recommended) and foods such as salmon and tuna. Recent studies show that having high levels of Vitamin D in our blood can help protect against many diseases, while low levels are linked with several disorders. Here are 12 critically important ways Vitamin D can help protect your health:
1) Colon Cancer. A study by cancer prevention specialists found high amounts of Vitamin D could slash colorectal cancer by two-thirds.
2) Breast Cancer. Reasearch found that women with the highest amount of Vitamin D in theiur blood lowered their risk by 50%. A Canadian study found that women who took at least 400 IU of Vitamin D dialy lowered their risk of deveolping breast cancer by 24%.
3) Heart Disease. Scientists at Utah University found that middle-aged to elderly people who raised their blood levels od Vitamin D after being found as deficient lowered their risk of having a heart attack by 33%, their risk of heart failure by 20% and their risk of dying from any cause by 30%.
4) Brain Health. A European study of men between the ages of 40 and 79 found that high levels of Vitamin D were associated with high scores on memory tests.
5) Diabetes. Researchers at Warwick Medical School found that adults with the hihest blood levels of Vitamin D lowered their risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by 55%.
6) Asthma. Asthmatics who have high levels of Vitamin D have better lung function and respond to treatment better than those having low levels according to researchers ar the Jewish Health Center in Denver, Colorado.
7) Bone Health. Vitamin D and calcium reduce the risk of hip fractures in the elderly. Studies show that people who are deficient in this vitamin absorb 65% less calcium than those with normal levels. Having adequate blood levels could reduce hip fractures by up to 50%.
8) Depression. University of Tronto researchers found people who suffer from depression improved as the levels of Vitamin D rose in the blood. Norwegian doctors found high doses helped relieve the symptoms of depression caused by "seasonal affective disorder".
9) Multiple Sclerosis. Australian scientists discovered that people who live in the state furtherest from the equator (getting less sunlight) are 7 times more likely to develop multiple sclerosis than those in the sunniest state.
10) Colds and Flu. Scientists at the University of Colorado found that those people with low levels of Vitamin D in their blood had the highest incidence of colds and flu.
11) Rheumatoid Arthritis. Researchers at the University of Alabama found that women with the highest blood levels of Vitamin D lowered their chances of developing rheumatoid arthritis by 30%.
12) Crohn's Disease. Vitamin D switches on genes responsible for fighting Crohn's Disease (a chronic inflammatory disease of the intestines) according to Canadian scientists.
According to my research I recommend 200 IU of Vitamin D each day for adults under the age of 50. Adults 50-70 years should take 400 IU daily and those 71 and above should have an intake of 600 IU each day.
Published on Thursday, 22 July 2010
Dow Chemical and Dupont are the driving forces behind the promotion of Soy as "a near perfect food" for humans. They are financing, here and abroad, anti-meat and anti-milk campaigns aimed at largely those concerned about animal welfare and the environment. They are trying to convince people that Soy products are not only healthier than the real thing, but better for the Earth too....even though the evidence suggests quite the opposite!
This evidence has led me to the conclusion that you need to be warned that any possible benefits from consuming Soy are far outweighed by the well documented risks. I found that Soy does not reliably lower cholestrtol and in fact raises Homocysteine levels in many people, which has been found to increase your risk of stroke, dementis, memory loss, and yes, even heart disease!
Other common health problems linked to a build up of Soy in your diet are: Thyroid related problems (weight gain, hair loss and loss of libido), poor calcium and iron bioavailability, increased risk of food allergies and asthma, besides kidney stones, hindered protein digestion. Soy can also mimic and block Estrogen activity. This danger increases every year with more new products containing Soy derivitives as an ingredient; mostly inprocessed and "fast foods". Also...don't give your baby any soy-based formula or use Brisbane's fluoridated water to make up baby's formula.
I'm not against all forms of Soy. Properly fermented products like natto, tempeh, miso and soy sauce do not wreak havoc in your body like unfermented Soy products do. It's today's high-tech processing methods that fail to remove the anti-nutrients and toxins that are naturally present in Soybeans that traditional fermentation neutralizes.
It is unfortunate that most Australians still believe that the Soy products like Soy Milk, Burgers, Oil, Tofu, Cheese and even Ice Cream is good for them. This is a tragic case of shrewed marketing of misinformation and outright lies taking root among the masses, exactly like the Fluoride Deception (see my previous postings).