Thursday, January 31, 2008
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Cell phone talking worse than driving drunk - study
Researchers at the University of Utah have published a study that claims drivers on cell phones are prone to more crashes than drunk drivers. Two psychology professors, David Strayer and Frank Drews, along with toxicology professor Dennis Crouch, conducted the study. 40 test subjects drove a simulated highway while undistracted, drunk and talking on a cellphone. The cell phone using drivers crashed three times, while the drunk drivers surprisingly did OK.
Researchers found that the drunk drivers were more aggressive and followed closer than the cell phone using drivers. They also discovered that cell phone users had significantly slower brake times at 849 ms versus 777 ms of the baseline group. Researchers suggest that cell phones make drivers more sluggish in perception and reaction.
Amazingly the drunk group's times did not significantly different from the baseline group. In addition, there were no crashes with the drunk group even though they had a tendancy to follow up to 2.5 meters (about 8 ft) closer than the cell phone group. The drunk group also had to brake much harder to avoid accidents.
The researchers simulated a 24-mile two-way highway on a "PatrolSim" driving simulator, commonly used by police officers for high-speed pursuit training. In 15-minute driving sessions, the test subjects had to follow and avoid hitting a pace car that would randomly brake. Passing vehicles were thrown is as distractions.
The volunteers had to do the same course four separate times. The first was a baseline test with no cellphone usage or alcohol consumption. Then handheld and hands-free cell phone usage were tested with the subjects maintaining a casual conversation with a research assistant. The final test was done after drinking a mixture of vodka and orange to get the subjects to a .08% blood alcohol level - the legal definition of driving while intoxicated in many states. Unfortunately, researchers didn't test drunk driving with cell phone usage.
There are two issues that can be raised about the study. The first is that crashing in a simulator does not have the same visceral and tragic consequences as crashing in real life. To be sure, there are some huge safety and legal problems with doing a live highway test, but perhaps the volunteers would have done better in a real environment.
Also, while .08% blood alcohol level is considered drunk, that level is usually on the low end for drunk drivers that have crashed. It's not uncommon to find drivers with double that level after an accident.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Sunday, January 27, 2008
Nearly one out of ten of 200 beverage samples analyzed in a recent study by the EPA and FDA still had benzene levels above the U.S. EPA drinking water limit of 5 parts per billion (ppb).
Many manufacturers have reformulated their products to minimize or eliminate benzene. In these reformulated products, benzene levels were 1.1 ppb or less. About 71 percent of beverage samples contained less than 1 ppb.
Benzene can form in beverages that contain the preservative benzoate salt and ascorbic acid (vitamin C). Beverages were reformulated in the early 1990’s to avoid benzene formation, but it has recurred in recent years because new manufacturers were unaware of the problem and added vitamin C to drinks.
We all know what caffeine can do for our moods in the morning, but caffeine is also increasingly celebrated in the dermatological community for its impact on the skin.
For years, caffeine's ability to quickly and effectively constrict blood vessels has made it a valued topical ingredient, particularly in products designed to minimize facial flushing. For that reason, caffeine can be a tremendous boon to those who suffer from rosacea, which is essentially caused by frequently dilated blood vessels that lose their ability to contract.
La Roche Posay Rosaliac products, for example, are a great anti-inflammatory option for anyone who suffers from rosacea or facial redness. Topix Replenix CF Anti-Photoaging Complex SPF 45 is another excellent, well-rounded product that offers a blend of powerful antioxidants, caffeine, and sunscreen.
Caffeine's blood vessel-constricting benefits also make it a go-to ingredient in many eye creams (like MD Formulations Moisture Defense Antioxidant Eye Crème, for example), as it can quickly minimize redness and puffiness.
In addition to its anti-inflammatory benefits, though, caffeine is starting to get lots of attention for its antioxidant properties when used both topically and orally. (That morning cup o' joe might not be so bad after all!)
In fact, research suggests that both oral and topical caffeine may offer powerful anticarcinogenic benefits. A series of studies performed on mice found that caffeinated green and black teas prevented sun damage and even repaired damage once it occurred, whereas decaffeinated teas did not.
One particularly promising study suggested that topical caffeine may also repair UV damage - and that it may prove to be a stronger antioxidant than certain green tea polyphenols, currently among the strongest and best-researched antioxidants around. (On a related note, coffeeberry, which comes from the fruit of the coffee plant, is also getting a lot of attention lately as the next big antioxidant.)
Just a couple words of caution, though: Caffeine is dehydrating, so be sure to follow your coffee or tea with plenty of water. And if you're prone to facial flushing, hot beverages can cause redness; consider enjoying your caffeinated beverages over ice.
Wishing you great skin!
Dr. Baumann is author of the best-selling book," The Skin Type Solution." To learn more about her revolutionary skin typing system, visit her Web site, SkinTypeSolutions.com.
Saturday, January 26, 2008
Think that the "gay" lifestyle isn't any of your business? If you do, maybe you should not eat in restaurants or go out in public. Your government has lied to you. The Male (not proven female lesbian) homosexual is a transmitter of disease. That is the Plain Truth, like it or not.
Here is the MSNBC story:
SAN FRANCISCO - A drug-resistant strain of potentially deadly bacteria has moved beyond the borders of U.S. hospitals and is being transmitted among gay men during sex, researchers said on Monday.
They said methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, is beginning to appear outside hospitals in San Francisco, Boston, New York and Los Angeles.
Sexually active gay men in San Francisco are 13 times more likely to be infected than their heterosexual neighbors, the researchers reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
“Once this reaches the general population, it will be truly unstoppable,” said Binh Diep, a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco who led the study. “That’s why we’re trying to spread the message of prevention.”
According to chemical analyses, bacteria are spreading among the gay communities of San Francisco and Boston, the researchers said.
“We think that it’s spread through sexual activity,” Diep said.
This superbug can cause life-threatening and disfiguring infections and can often only be treated with expensive, intravenous antibiotics.
It killed about 19,000 Americans in 2005, most of them in hospitals, according to a report published in October in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
About 30 percent of all people carry ordinary staph chronically. It can be passed by touching other people or by depositing the bacteria on surfaces or objects.
The bacteria can cause deep-tissue infections if they enter the body through a wound in the skin.
Of those people who carry staph, most carry it in their noses but community-based MRSA also can live in and around the anus and is passed between sexual partners.
Incidence of MRSA is rising along with the resurgence of syphilis, rectal gonorrhea, and new HIV infections partly because of changes in beliefs about the severity of HIV and an increase in risky behaviors, such as illicit drug use and having sex that abrades the skin, Diep’s team wrote.
“Your likelihood of contracting each of these diseases increases with the number of sexual partners that you have,” Diep said. “The same can probably be said for MRSA.”
Staph infections often look like raised red dots on the skin. Left untreated, the areas can swell and fill with pus.
The best way to avoid infection is by washing the hands or genitals with soap and water, Diep said.
Thursday, January 24, 2008
This press release is an announcement submitted by Monash University Centre for Obesity Research and Education, and was not written by Diabetes Health.
A new world-first study by Monash University researchers has found gastric banding surgery has a profound impact on one of society's biggest health issues - diabetes.
The study, published today in Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), found obese patients with Type 2 diabetes who underwent gastric banding were five times more likely to have their diabetes go into long term remission, compared with patients who engaged in conventional weight loss therapies, such as a controlled calorie diet and exercise.
The four-year study, which was led by Drs John Dixon and Paul O'Brien from Monash University's Centre for Obesity Research and Education (CORE), monitored 60 volunteers for two years who underwent significant weight loss of more than 10 per cent of their body weight.
Dr Dixon said of those who underwent gastric banding surgery, 73 per cent achieved remission for Type 2 diabetes, compared to just 13 percent of the people who underwent conventional therapy.
"Our study presents strong evidence that obese patients with a Body Mass Index greater than 30 with Type 2 diabetes need to lose a significant amount of weight to improve their overall health and glycemic management," Dr Dixon said.
"Our study shows that gastric banding surgery can assist those patients to achieve this - and with sustained results."
Professor O'Brien said obesity and Type 2 diabetes were strongly linked and combine to present one of the greatest public health problems facing our community.
"We found that the amount of weight loss was a key determinant of effectiveness. Most of those losing ten per cent of their total weight had remission of the diabetes. Few who lost less did so."
Dr Dixon said the study also found patients who lost substantial weight could not only dramatically reduce their diabetes medications, but also those for controlling blood pressure and lowering blood fats.
"We found that after two years, the surgical group when compared to the conventional therapy group displayed a four times greater reduction in glycated haemoglobin, which can be an indicator of poorly controlled diabetes," Dr Dixon said.
Gastric banding is a medical procedure where a band is placed around a patient's stomach to reduce appetite and food intake. For more information on the study, visit the CORE website: http://www.core.monash.org/.
23 January 2008
Swedish scientists have found that alcohol lowers blood sugar by redirecting blood within the pancreas and sending massive amounts of it to the islets.
The finding by the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, is the first to show how alcohol is able to lower blood sugar levels. What happens is that by sending more of the pancreas's internal blood flow to the islets, alcohol spurs insulin production, which in turn lowers glucose levels.
The scientists injected rats with ethanol alcohol and noted that blood flow to the islets increased fourfold. The alcohol did not affect the amount of blood reaching the pancreas, only the distribution of blood within it.
The study also found that alcohol induced the changes in blood flow by affecting nitric oxide, a chemical compound that medical studies suggest is instrumental in glucose transport and the actions of insulin. Alcohol also affected the vagus nerve, which descends from the brain and into the abdomen and, among other things, signals organs there to secrete.
Source: Endocrinology, January 2008
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
NEW YORK: Recent laboratory tests performed for The New York Times found so much mercury in tuna sushi that a regular diet of even two or three pieces a week at some restaurants could be a health hazard for the average adult, based on guidelines set out by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Eight of the 44 pieces of sushi The Times purchased from local restaurants and stores in October had mercury levels so high that the Food and Drug Administration could take legal action to remove the fish from the market.
Although all the samples were gathered in New York City, experts believe similar results would be observed elsewhere. "Mercury levels in bluefin are likely to be very high, regardless of location," said Tim Fitzgerald, a marine scientist for Environmental Defense, an advocacy group that works to protect the environment and improve human health. Most of the stores and restaurants in the survey said the tuna The Times had sampled was bluefin.
In 2004, the Food and Drug Administration joined with the Environmental Protection Agency to warn children and women who may become pregnant to limit their consumption of certain varieties of canned tuna because the mercury it contained might damage the developing nervous system. Fresh tuna was not included in the advisory. The tuna sushi in The Times sample contained far more mercury than is typically found in canned tuna.
Over the past several years, studies have suggested that mercury may also cause health problems for adults, including an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and neurological symptoms.
Dr. P. Michael Bolger, a toxicologist who is head of the chemical hazard assessment team at the Food and Drug Administration, said the agency was reviewing its seafood mercury warnings. Because it has been four years since the advisory was issued, he said, "we have had a study under way to take a fresh look at it."
Tuna samples from the restaurants Nobu Next Door, Sushi Seki, Sushi of Gari and Blue Ribbon and the food store Gourmet Garage all had mercury in excess of one part per million, the "action level" at which the FDA can take food off the market. (In recent years, the FDA has rarely, if ever, taken any tuna off the market.)
The European Union can take tuna and other predatory and long-lived fish off the market at the same mercury concentration, one part per million.
Both Drew Nieporent, a managing partner of Nobu Next Door and Andy Arons, an owner of Gourmet Garage, were shocked by the Times' findings.
"I'm startled by this," said Nieporent. "Anything that might endanger any customer of ours, we'd be inclined to take off the menu immediately and get to the bottom of it."
Arons, whose stores stock yellowfin, albacore and bluefin, depending on the available quality and price, said, "We'll look for lower-level-mercury fish. Maybe we won't sell tuna sushi for awhile, until we get to the bottom of this."
At Blue Ribbon Sushi, Eric Bromberg, an owner, said he was aware that bluefin tuna had higher mercury concentrations. For that reason, he said, the restaurant typically tells parents with small children not to let them eat "more than one or two pieces."
Scientists who performed the analysis for The New York Times said they had been "frankly surprised" at the results and had run the tests several times to be sure there was no mistake in the levels of methylmercury, a form of mercury tied to health problems.
"No one should eat a meal of tuna with mercury levels like those found in the restaurant samples, more than about once every three weeks," said Dr. Michael Gochfeld, professor of Environmental and Occupational Medicine at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Piscataway, New Jersey, who analyzed the sushi for the Times with Dr. Joanna Burger, professor of life sciences at Rutgers University.
The work was done at the Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute, in Piscataway, New Jersey, a partnership between Rutgers and the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. Gochfeld is a former chairman of the New Jersey Mercury Task Force. He also treats patients with mercury poisoning.
More than half of the restaurants and stores surveyed sold sushi with so much mercury that eating just six pieces a week would exceed the amount the Environmental Protection Agency says can be safely consumed by an adult of average weight, which the agency defines as 154 pounds, 70 kilograms. People weighing less are advised to consume even less mercury.
In general, tuna sushi from food stores was much lower in mercury. These findings reinforce results in other studies showing that more expensive tuna usually contains more mercury because it is more likely to come from a larger species that accumulates mercury from the fish it eats.
In the Times survey, 10 of the 13 restaurants said at least one of the two tuna samples purchased had been bluefin. (Itis hard for anyone but experts to tell whether a piece of tuna sushi is bluefin by looking at it.) By contrast, other species, like yellowfin, bigeye and albacore, generally have much less mercury. Several of the stores in the Times sample said the tuna in their sushi was yellowfin.
"It is very likely bluefin will be included in next year's testing," said Dr. Bolger of the FDA. "A couple of months ago, FDA became aware of blue fin tuna as a species Americans are eating."
Studies have found high blood mercury levels among people eating a diet rich in seafood. According to a 2007 survey by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, the average level of mercury in New Yorkers' blood is three times as high as the national average. The report found especially high levels among Asian New Yorkers, especially foreign-born Chinese, and people with higher incomes.
The report noted that Asians tended to eat more seafood and speculated that wealthier people favored certain fish, like swordfish and bluefin tuna, with higher mercury levels.
The city has warned children and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding not to eat any fresh tuna or Chilean sea bass or several other fish it describes as "too high in mercury."
Kate Mahaffey, a senior research scientist in the office of science coordination and policy at EPA who studies mercury in fish, said she was not surprised by reports of high concentrations.
"We have seen exposures occurring now in the United States that have produced blood mercury a lot higher than anything we would have expected to see," she said. "And this appears to be related to consumption of larger amounts of fish that are higher in mercury than we had anticipated."
Many experts believe the government's warnings on mercury in seafood do not go far enough. "The current advice from the FDA is insufficient," said Dr. Philippe Grandjean, adjunct professor of environmental health at the Harvard School of Public Health and head of the Department of Environmental Medicine at the University of Southern Denmark. "In order to maintain reasonably low mercury exposure you have to eat fish low in the food chain, the smaller fish, and they are not saying that."
Some environmental groups have already sounded the alarm. Environmental Defense, the advocacy group, says no one should eat bluefin tuna.
Others take a less absolute position. "I like to think of tuna sushi as an occasional treat," Gochfeld said. "A steady diet is certainly problematic. There are a lot of other sushi choices."
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
By Megan Rauscher
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Glucosamine at commonly taken doses does not increase HDL ("good") cholesterol in people with diabetes, researchers have found.
"Many people take glucosamine for arthritis-like symptoms and, from previous research, we thought glucosamine may also have a beneficial effect on HDL cholesterol," Dr. Stewart G. Albert noted in comments to Reuters Health.
Albert, from Saint Louis University School of Medicine, Missouri, and his colleagues evaluated the effects of glucosamine (500 milligrams taken three times daily) versus matching "placebo" capsules in ten people with type 2 diabetes and two with type 1 diabetes.
The three men and nine women in the study, all with low HDL cholesterol, were randomly assigned to take glucosamine or placebo for 2 weeks, and then to cross over to a 2-week course of the alternate therapy.
"We did not find any benefit of glucosamine on HDL cholesterol or any worsening of the diabetes control," Albert said.
In their report of the study in the journal Diabetes Care, the investigators note that the lack of an effect on diabetes control "is consistent with previously published studies on the effect of glucosamine in both diabetic and nondiabetic individuals."
However, "This study does not answer whether higher doses or longer duration of glucosamine may make any difference" to HDL levels, Albert said.
SOURCE: Diabetes Care, November 2007.
|Can Chinese Food Cause Cancer?|
Monosodium glutamate (MSG), a common ingredient in Chinese food, may cause stomach cancer, according to a study by researchers at the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Cancer Research Institute.
Their analysis of 134 patients found that nearly half of those with stomach, rectal and colon cancer were regular consumers of Chinese food from middle- or low-end restaurants. Most of them also had ulcers, which were also linked to MSG.
In 2004, the World Health Organization declared MSG unsafe for human consumption, but it is still widely used.
Sunday, January 20, 2008
RAW MILK WINS in CALIFORNIA!
Thanks to last minute "hallway negotiations," Assembly Bill AB 1604 passed with unanimous consent during Ag Assembly hearings held on Wednesday. This will ensure, for now, the continued flow of raw milk in California.
It was standing room only at the State Capitol on Wednesday January 16, 2008. Room 4202 was packed to its capacity with over 400 people, including scores of children on parents' laps. The hallway was filled with overflow crowds. Judging by the number of "I love Raw Milk" pins handed out, the total crowd was estimated at 700.
Assembly members Nicole Parra, Tom Berryhill and Mike Villines sealed the fate of AB 1604 with impassioned speeches berating the sloppy governmental process around AB 1735. Testimony was heard from Collette Cassidy and Dr. Ron Garthwaite of Claravale Dairy, Wholefoods Co-president Walter Robb, and Organic Pastures Founder Mark McAfee. More than 75 people spoke at the microphone supporting their choice in raw milk – among them doctors, nurses, pharmacists, PhDs and, most importantly, children, mothers and fathers.
AB 1604 is a deal we can all live with
Ideally, AB 1735 should have been reversed so as to eliminate the baseless raw milk coliform standard it included. However, the political reality of the moment said otherwise. Allies to the anti- raw milk forces were deeply imbedded in the hearing committee. The mainstream dairy industry and the California Medical Association also stood against AB 1604. Without last minute negotiations to modify AB 1604, it would have "died in committee" and AB 1735 would be the law of the land. Raw milk availability would have become subject to the uncertainties of litigation, and this was a risk for raw milk consumers that we were unwilling to take.
The results of the vote are as follows:
AB 1604 passed as a committee bill and will go forward as a "consent item."
AB 1604 stops all coliform testing for six months.
AB 1604 allows for additional hearings to be held about coliforms and to review the science, including a six inch thick package of research and support documents submitted at the hearing.
AB 1604 allows for a less-than-50 coliform per ml "in the first bulk tank" starting July 2008. This is achievable and fair, and most importantlysatisfied the parties in opposition.
Nicole Parra reads CDFA the riot act
In a rare scene seldom witnessed at the Capitol, Assemblywoman Nicole Parra admonished the CDFA for its deceitful attack on the democratic process, and for misleading the legislature, saying such a process "will not stand." She insisted AB 1604 pass out of the committee, and said it would fail "over [her] dead body." She was particularly passionate about the fact CDFA had cheated the people out of the democratic process. Republican assembly whip Mike Villines strongly supported Nicole, saying a mistake had been made which will now take courage to correct. Assemblyman and Ag Committee member Tom Berryhill wanted a search for who in the CDFA did this, stating that "heads should roll."
Gifts of raw milk and a march to the governor's office
After the hearings OPDC quarts of Raw milk were given away to all who attended. Then hundreds of supporters marched to the governor's office with a gift of raw milk, to ask for his support. A smaller group also sought support from the speaker of the senate. OPDC marketing director, Kaleigh McAfee, gave raw milk to Nicole Parra, who is lactose intolerant. The word is that she enjoyed it and had no problems at all!
January 16th was a great day for raw milk but the work is not completed. The next step is to contact your state assemblyman and ask for support of AB 1604 at next vote. Tell them it is a "consent" bill that includes a compromise and has everyone's support. When the vote is closer, we will be asking you to contact Senator Dean Flores as well.
Congratulations to everyone in the raw milk movement.
We have spoken with a heartfelt voice so strong it is impossible to measure, except perhaps, by the tears of many who attended. Your actions have created a power that only comes from the people united in a real purpose.
The people have spoken and raw milk is here to stay!
Mark McAfee, Founder OPDC
Saturday, January 19, 2008
Thank You for Smoking
by Peter Brimelow (nonsmoker, but tolerant)
The hangperson's noose is unmistakably around the tobacco industry's neck. In Florida and Mississippi, state governments are attempting to force tobacco companies to pay some smoking-related health care costs. In Washington, D.C., the Environmental Protection Agency has claimed that "secondhand smoke" is a significant risk for nonsmokers and the Food & Drug Administration is making noises about regulating nicotine as a drug. And recently the American Medical Association agreed, reasserting that nicotine is addictive. Smokers have already been driven away from many workplaces into the street for a furtive puff. But further legal harassment, to the point of what an industry spokesman calls "backdoor prohibition," seems unstoppable.
Lost in this lynching frenzy: the fact that smoking might be, in some small ways, good for you.
Hold on now! Let's be clear: The Surgeon General has indeed determined that smoking is dangerous to your health. Lung cancer and cardiovascular diseases are highly correlated with cigarette consumption. Annual smoking-related deaths are commonly said to be over 400,000 (although critics say the number is inflated).
But so is driving automobiles dangerous to your health (over 40,000 deaths a year). Yet people do it, because it has rewards as well as risk. And they judge, as individuals, that the reward outweighs the risk.
This is called freedom.
Well, what are the rewards of cigarette smoking? Apart from intangible pleasure, the most obvious is behavioral. A battery of studies, such as those by British researcher D.M. Warburton, show that cigarettes, whatever their other effects, really do stimulate alertness, dexterity and cognitive capacity.
And alertness, dexterity, etc., can be useful. Such as when driving. Or flying – as Congress recognized when it exempted airline pilots from the ban on smoking on domestic flights.
These behavioral benefits suggest an answer to the Great Tobacco Mystery: why almost a third of adult Americans continue to do something they are told, incessantly and insistently, is bad for them. (Duke University economist W. Kip Viscusi reported in his 1992 book, Smoking: Making the Risky Decision, that survey data show smokers, if anything, exaggerate the health danger of their habit.)
Smokers, according to numerous studies such as those by University of Michigan researchers Ovide and Cynthia Pomerleau, are different from nonsmokers. They tend toward depression and excitability. Current understanding is that nicotine is "amphoteric," that is, it can act to counter both conditions, depending on how it is consumed. (Quick puffs stimulate, long drags calm.)
The implication is fascinating. A large part of the population seems to be aware of its significant although not pathological personality quirks, and to have discovered a form of self-medication that regulates them.
Of course, this explanation for the stubbornness of smokers is not as satisfying as what Washington prefers to believe: mass seduction by the wicked tobacco companies and their irresistible advertising. Nor would it justify huge rescue operations by heroic politicians and bureaucrats.
Beyond its behavioral effects, smoking seems also to offer subtler health rewards to balance against its undisputed risks:
Parkinson's disease. The frequency of this degenerative disorder of the nervous system among smokers appears to be half the rate among nonsmokers – an effect recognized by the Surgeon General as along ago as 1964.
Alzheimer's disease. Similarly, the frequency of this degenerative mental disorder has recently been found to be as much as 50%less among smokers than among nonsmokers for example, by the H studies reviewed in the International Journal of Epidemiology in 1991.
Endometrial cancer. There is extensive and long-standing evidence that this disease of the womb occurs as much as 50% less among smokers as documented by, for example, a New England Journal of Medicine article back in 1985. The triggering mechanism appears to be a reduction of estrogen levels.
Prostate cancer. Conversely, smoking seems to raise estrogen levels in men and may be responsible for what appears to be a 50% lower rate of prostate cancer among smokers, although this needs corroboration.
Osteoarthritis. This degenerative disorder of bone and cartilage is up to five times less likely to occur among heavy smokers as documented, for example, by the federal government's first Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.
Colon cancer, ulcerative colitis. These diseases of the bowel seem to be about 30% and 50% less frequent among smokers as documented, for example, by articles in the Journal of the American Medical Association and in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1981 and 1983, respectively.
Other benefits that have been suggested for smoking: Lower rates of sarcoidosis and allergic alveolitis, both lung disorders, and possibly even acne. Smokers are also lighter ironically, because obesity is a leading cause of the cardiovascular disease that smoking is also supposed to exacerbate. So you could quit smoking and still die of a heart attack because of the weight you put on.
None of these health benefits is enough to persuade doctors to recommend occasional cigarettes, in the way that some now occasionally recommend a glass of wine.
But consider this theoretical possibility: Should 60-year-olds take up smoking because its protection against Alzheimer's is more immediate that its potential damage to the lungs, which won't show up for 30 years if at all?
A theoretical possibility and likely to remain theoretical. Research into possible benefits of tobacco and nicotine is widely reported to be stymied by the absolutist moral fervor of the antismoking campaign.
Under the Carter Administration, the federal government abandoned its research into safer cigarettes in favor of an attack on all smoking. No effort is made to encourage smokers to switch to pipes and cigars, although their users' lung cancer and heart disease rates are five to ten times lower (somewhat offset by minor increases in mouth and throat cancers). There is no current support for studies of the marginal increase in danger for each cigarette smoked, although it appears the human system can clear the effects of three to five of the (much stronger) pre-1960 cigarettes, if dispersed across a day, with relatively little risk.
Instead, the extirpation of smoking had become another "moral equivalent of war" as President Carter called the energy crisis in the 1970s, and as price and wage controls were viewed earlier. There is no role for tradeoffs, risk-reward calculations or free choice.
Why don't tobacco companies point out the potential offsetting rewards of smoking? Besides the usual corporate cowardice and bureaucratic inertia, the answer may be another, typically American, disease: lawyers. Directing the companies' defense, they apparently veto any suggestion that smoking has benefits for fear of liability suits and of the possible regulatory implications if nicotine is seen as a drug.
Which leaves smokers defenseless against a second typically American disease: the epidemic of power hungry puritanical bigots.
Copyright © 1994 Peter Brimelow
Friday, January 18, 2008
Facts on Smoking You are Not Told, or Why George Burns Lived to 100!
by Robert R. Barney
We are running a series of articles in our YOUR HEALTH TODAY section which I think will absolutely blow most of our readers today! Over the past 40 years, we have been overwhelmed with the evils of smoking. The message has basically been, SMOKE ONE CIGARETTE and YOU WILL DIE A DAY YOUNGER! Have you ever thought of any benefits of smoking? Honestly, could there be any benefits? Well I did my own investigation and guess what? Smoking in moderation may actually be GOOD for you! I know that smacks in the face of everything science and government has been telling us, but sometimes governments LIE! Here are just a few examples of FACTS I bet you don't know:
-- Q10 is made from Tobacco
-- Smoking Reduces both Parkinson Disease AND Alzheimers!
-- Smoking increases certain hormones and can act similar to Viagra!
-- A Reduced risk in women who smoke to Colon Cancer
-- Moderate Cigar or Non-Filtered Cigarettes may actually help you live Longer
I realize that this sounds like I have gone bonkers, but friends, every statement I have made has proven science behind it and I document it below! Drinking wine can kill you. If you drink two to thee bottles of wine a day, you will probably be at a much greater risk of developing a host of diseases related to alcoholism, yet we know that those who drink a glass a day statistically live longer than tea-tottlers. The same seems to apply to smoking. Very low doses of smoking (a Cigar or two once a week or two or three NON-FILTERED cigarettes a day) actually helps our bodies. It has been documented for years that Japanese men out smoke American men yet have lower incidences of lung cancer! ( http://cebp.aacrjournals.org/cgi/content/full/10/11/1193 )
One looks at people like George Burns who lived to be 100, smoking a cigar his entire life. Would he have lived to 150 if he didn't smoke? Well, the evidence I am presenting suggests that he lived that long BECAUSE he smoked.
If you notice,whenever I mentioned cigarette smoking, I always wrote of NON-FILTERED cigarettes. Again, big businees like the tobacco companies and our government know that the filters on these cigarettes are much more harmful than the tobacco smoke! More than 90% of the cigarettes sold worldwide have a filter. Nearly all filters consist of a rod of numerous ( > 12 000) plastic-like cellulose acetate fibres. During high speed cigarette manufacturing procedures, fragments of cellulose acetate that form the mouthpiece of a filter rod become separated from the filter at the end face. The cut surface of the filter of nearly all cigarettes has these fragments. In smoking a cigarette in the usual manner, some of these fragments are released during puffing. In addition to the cellulose acetate fragments, carbon particles are released also from some cigarette brands that have a charcoal filter. Cigarettes with filters that release cellulose acetate or carbon particles during normal smoking conditions are defective. Philip Morris, Inc has known of this filter defect for more than 40 years.
results of investigations substantiating defective filters have been concealed from the smoker and the health community. The tobacco industry has been negligent in not performing toxicological examinations and other studies to assess the human health risks associated with regularly ingesting and inhaling non-degradable, toxin coated cellulose acetate fragments and carbon microparticles and possibly other components that are released from conventional cigarette filters during normal smoking. The rationale for harm assessment is supported by the results of consumer surveys that have shown that the ingestion or inhalation of cigarette filter fibres are a health concern to nearly all smokers. (From “Cigarettes with defective filters marketed for 40 years: what Philip Morris never told smokers” (Tobacco Control 2002;11:i51-i61):)
Check out a host of stories we have on this subject on http://journals.aol.com/plaintruthtoday/your-health-today
Notes and References
1) The miracle supplement (for skin, heart, brain rejuvenation) Coenzyme Q10 is extracted from tobacco leaf! http://www.ritecare.com/prodsheets/and-503000.html
Dr. Ricjard A. Kunin extols the benefits of Coenzyme Q10. He also says: The energy of oxidation in cells depends on CoQ in partnership with niacinamide (vitamin B3), riboflavin (vitamin B2), and minerals such as iron and copper to effect the movement of electrons and hydrogen protons in the power plant of cell, the mitochondrion. Incidentally, tobacco leaf is the champion source, containing 184 mg in a quarter pound. Note that the doctor follows with the disclaimer, "In fact, the Japanese companies make their CoQ from tobacco, however it is only released by means of bacterial fermentation not by smoking." The fact remains that CoQ 10 is a natural miracle for the human body and it's chief source is tobacco!
2) Smoking Reduces Parkinson's Disease: Studies world-wide has notice that smokers have a significally lower incidence of getting the disease, yet this is never mentioned in any of the anti-smoking campaigns.
Neurology. 1999 Sep 22;53(5):1158. Smoking and Parkinson's disease: a dose-response relationship Gorell JM, Rybicki BA, Johnson CC, Peterson EL
Department of Neurology, Henry Ford Health System, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Center in Molecular and Cellular Toxicology with Human Applications, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, USA.
Also see Smoking lowers Parkinson's disease risk from Reuters (Mar 20, 2007).
From “Temporal relationship between cigarette smoking and risk of Parkinson disease” (NEUROLOGY 2007;68:764-768):
3) The by-product of smoking (Nitric Oxide) helps in opening our arteries! Nitric oxide stimulates peripheral circulation (this is the mechanism behind Viagra effect).Low concentration carbon monoxide (as found in tobacco smoke) protects cells in harsh conditions, such as low oxygen and general cell death
4) Smoking actually increases GROWTH Hormones! Like testosterone and DHEA.
source: Geriatrics & Gerontology International (Volume 6 Issue 1 Page 49-52, March 2006)Relation of age and smoking to serum levels of total testosterone and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate in aged men in , which found these results, "Serum T did not decrease with age, and was significantly higher in smokers than for non-smokers. Serum DHEA decreased with age more sharply in non-smokers than for smokers."
5) Smoking reduces IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1)--at least in males for sure. In animal experiments, lowered insuline growth factor IGF-1 change extends lifespan.
6) Reduced Incidence of Colorectal Cancer--especially in women.
Cigarette Smoking and the Risk of Colorectal Cancer in Women (Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Vol. 80, No. 16, 1329-1333, October 19, 1988) states, "Colorectal cancer incidence rates for smokers, nonsmokers living with smokers (i.e., passive smokers), and non-smokers in smoke-free households were compared in a 12-year prospective study of 25, 369 women who participated in a private census conducted in Washington County, MD, in 1963. Women who smoked had a decreased relative risk of colorectal cancer compared with the risk for nonsmokers (age-adjusted relative risk, 0.76; 95% confidence interval, 0.52–1.10). The risk for passive smokers was similar to that for smokers. The relative risks were significantly reduced for older women; relative risks were 0.42 for smokers and 0.66 for passive smokers over age 65. The data suggest that older women who smoke have a lower risk of colorectal cancer than non-smokers. The effect may be mediated by an antiestrogenic effect of smoking."
7) People who smoke fare better than nonsmokers when exposed to occupational hazards.
From Lack of combined effects of exposure and smoking on respiratory health in aluminium potroom workersBritish Medical Journal, Occupational and Environmental Medicine (Vol 56, 468-472, 1999):
8) Cigarette smoking may be an independent protective factor for developing schizophrenia. These results are consistent with animal models showing both neuroprotective effects of nicotine and differential release of prefrontal dopamine in response to nicotine.
From Cancer in schizophrenia: is the risk higher or lower? in Schizophrenia Research (Volume 73, Issue 2, Pages 333-341) at http://www.schres-journal.com/article/PIIS0920996404002130/abstract
The incidence of cancer in patients diagnosed with schizophrenia was compared with the incidence in the general population. The results showed that the cancer standardized incidence ratios (SIRs) for all sites were significantly lower among men and women with schizophrenia, 0.86 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.80–0.93] and 0.91 (95% CI 0.85–0.97), respectively. This reduced overall risk was clearest for those born in Europe–America, both men (SIR 0.85, 95% CI 0.74–0.97) and women (SIR 0.86, 95% CI 0.77–0.94).
Appetite Suppressant -- no citations. Common sense. Most stimulants are appetite suppressants, and nicotine does seem to be a stimulant.
9) Tobacco: the definitive link in healthy aging by Daniel John Richard Date.
Reduces incidence of Alzheimer's, among other degenerative diseases.
"A statistically significant inverse association between smoking and Alzheimer's disease was observed at all levels of analysis, with a trend towards decreasing risk with increasing consumption" (International Journal of Epidemiology, 1991)
"The risk of Alzheimer's disease decreased with increasing daily number of cigarettes smoked before onset of disease. . . . In six families in which the disease was apparently inherited . . . the mean age of onset was 4.17 years later in smoking patients than in non-smoking patients from the same family" (British Medical Journal, June 22, 1991)
"Although more data are needed . . . [an analysis of 19 studies suggests] nicotine protects against AD" (Neuroepidemiology, 1994)
Nicotine injections significantly improved certain types of mental functioning in Alzheimer's patients (Psychopharmacology, 1992).
One theory: nicotine improves the responsiveness of Alzheimer's patients to acetylcholine, an important brain chemical.
“When chronically taken, nicotine may result in: (1) positive reinforcement [it makes you feel good], (2) negative reinforcement [it may keep you from feeling bad], (3) reduction of body weight [by reducing appetite and increasing metabolic rate], (4) enhancement of performance, and protection against: (5) Parkinson's disease, (6) Tourette's disease [tics], (7) Alzheimer's disease, (8) ulcerative colitis and (9) sleep apnea. The reliability of these effects varies greatly but justifies the search for more therapeutic applications for this interesting compound." ("Beneficial Effects of Nicotine," Jarvik, British Journal of Addiction, 1991)
See more on smoking and reduced incidence of Alzheimer's disease. In this compilation of 19 studies, 15 found a reduce risk in smokers, and none found an increased risk. Also noted is the fact that acute administration of nicotine improves attention and information processing in AD patients, which adds further plausibility to the hypothesis.
Smoking is Good for You: Absence, Presence, and the Ecumenical Appeal of Indian Islamic Healing Centers
In Shop owner says smoking 'doesn't cause disease' a shop owner "tells his customers that smoking calms the nerves and soothes the mind." This is in sync with what Albert Einstein stated upon becoming a lifetime member of the Montreal Pipe Smokers Club at the age of 71, "I believe that pipe smoking contributes to a somewhat calm and objective judgment in all human affairs."
Smoking Does Not Cause Lung Cancer! (According to WHO/CDC Data)*
By: James P. Siepmann, MD
Yes, it is true, smoking does not cause lung cancer. It is only one of many risk factors for lung cancer. I initially was going to write an article on how the professional literature and publications misuse the language by saying "smoking causes lung cancer"1,2, but the more that I looked into how biased the literature, professional organizations, and the media are, I modified this article to one on trying to put the relationship between smoking and cancer into perspective. (No, I did not get paid off by the tobacco companies, or anything else like that.)
When the tobacco executives testified to Congress that they did not believe that smoking caused cancer, their answers were probably truthful and I agree with that statement. Now, if they were asked if smoking increases the risk of getting lung cancer, then their answer based upon current evidence should have be "yes." But even so, the risk of a smoker getting lung cancer is much less than anyone would suspect. Based upon what the media and anti-tobacco organizations say, one would think that if you smoke, you get lung cancer (a 100% correlation) or at least expect a 50+% occurrence before someone uses the word "cause."
While the health risks of tobacco are well known, several studies have shown that people with a history of cigarette smoking have lower rates of neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. However, the explanations for nicotine's neuroprotective effects continue to be debated.
Now a team of neuroscientists at the University of South Florida College of Medicine presents new evidence of an anti-inflammatory mechanism in the brain by which nicotine may protect against nerve cell death. Their study was published today in the Journal of Neurochemistry.
Thursday, January 17, 2008
The truth about raw sugar, light, dark brown and Kleenraw sugar. The facts of sugar refining, and what you should know about sugar.By Fred Rohe
No Organic Merchant sells white sugar or any products containing white sugar because it is a foodless food. It is 99.96% sucrose and when taken into the human body in this form is potentially dangerous. It is touted as an energy food, but such propaganda is misleading for there is ample evidence that white sugar robs the body of B vitamins, disrupts calcium metabolism and has a deleterious effect on the nervous system.
The above material can be concluded by anyone through reading but in addition to the reading, I have taken the trouble to visit sugar refineries in both Hawaii and California. Aside from general curiousity, my reason for these visits was that I had been selling "raw" or brown sugar without understanding what they are. There was no information available which seemed dependable.
Sugar cane is grown with the use of synthetic fertilizers and weed sprays. The fields are burned just previous to harvest. These are destructive agricultural practices; nothing truly good can come from soil so mistreated. I would, therefore, be uninterested in consuming aything derived from commercially grown sugar cane, either brown sugar or molasses.
Sugar refining is largely a mechanical process done in truly huge machines which boil, spin, filter and separate. Aside from water, the materials which enter the processing are lime, phosphoric acid and diatamaceous earth. I don't consider any of these additives significant where white sugar is concerned because one thing is certainly true about white sugar; it is "pure". No chemical residues could possibly remain at the end of the line, so effective is their purification process.
There are three kinds of sugar which are not white: light brown, dark brown and Kleenraw. They are all made the same way—by adding back molasses to refined sugar. For years I have heard several different versions of how these so-called "raw" sugars are made. All of them led me to believe that the so-called "raw" sugar which has traditionally been used in the health food industry is a "partially refined" product removed from the refining process sometimes before the final stage of white sugar. But my investigation have proved this impression erroneous. All forms of non-white sugats are made from a base of white sugar.
The numbers go like this: Partially refined or "raw" sugar is 97% sucrose when it leaves Hawaii and goes through a gigantic California refinery to produce refined sugar, 99.96% sucrose. For Kleenraw they add back 5% molasses, for light brown they add back 12% molasses, for dark brown they add back 13% molasses. A special crystalization process is used for Kleenraw designed especially to create a raw-like illusion.
All sugar companies use similar processes, as it is against the law to sell sugar which has not been refined. Ostensibly, the purpose of this law is to protect us; in reality it means we have no freedom to choose what kind of sugar we would use. Personally, I would like to be able to buy sugar from an organically grown cane in the form of an almost black, syrupy mass of crystals. It is rumored that the law which prevents us from buying such true raw sugar was enacted as a result of powerful lobbying on the behalf of the sugar refining companies.
Organic Merchants do not sell brown or "raw" sugar or any products containing brown sugar either, because the plain fact is that brown sugar is a shuck (for those not familiar with the term, let's call brown sugar phony).
It does not seem to me to be a good judgement to ban white sugar because it is refined to the point of foodlessness containing neither vitamins nor minerals, a definite potential human heath hazard... and then turn around and sell a product which is made from 87% of the very same white sugar. Having done a thorough personal investigation, I can assure you that brown sugar is nothing more than white sugar wearing a mask.
Besides not liking the 87% part of brown sugar—meaning the white sugar—I don't like much the 13% part either—the molasses. For one thing, the ecologially unsound agricultural practices I mentioned previously; for another thing; those mammoth filtration units the molasses comes out of which are filled with charred beef bones. A representative from one of the sugar companies who came to see me to answer some questions from a letter I have written said the burned beef bones were to give the white sugar a more pleasing "aesthetic" effect. He explained that burned beef bones make white sugar whiter. Of course it'spurely personal opinion but I say God save us from such "aesthetics".
I have not seen Turbinado or Demarara sugar produced, but my understanding of sugar procesing enables me to make the following wager with complete confidence: I'll bet Turbinado sugar is at least 95% sucrose. I'm so confident that I would not lose those bets that I won't sell Turbinado or Demarara either. That wager makes no pretense of being founded on "scientific" grounds but on first-hand experience of what sugar looks like during the refining procedure.
Not having known the facts, some Organic Merchants have allowed so-called "raw sugar" to have a home in their stores. Probably some products containing it are popular. Our intention is not take the pleasure out of anyone's life, but to play a part in upgrading the quality of American food. If enought of us stop buying junk—even the better junk—the food manufacturers will listen.
So what are you going to use for a sweetener if you never allow sugar to cross your lips? Half the amount of honey should be used in substituting for sugar in recipes. Beyong that, it's all experimental. Try carob molasses, carb syrup, unrefined sugar cane syrup, date sugar. Best experiment of all is to follow the advice of J.I. Rodale: "We receive so many letter from readers asking what kind of sugar to use. So far as we are concerned, the answer is none... if you would be healthy, omit all sugar and just get accustomed to doing without it."
Reprints available from: Organic Merchants, c/o Erewhon, 8003 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, Ca. 90048, 651-3787.
Myth: Use of soy as a food dates back many thousands of years.
Truth: Soy was first used as a food during the late Chou dynasty (1134-246 BC), only after the Chinese learned to ferment soy beans to make foods like tempeh, natto and tamari.
Myth: Asians consume large amounts of soy foods.
Truth: Average consumption of soy foods in Japan and China is 10 grams (about 2 teaspoons) per day. Asians consume soy foods in small amounts as a condiment, and not as a replacement for animal foods.
Myth: Modern soy foods confer the same health benefits as traditionally fermented soy foods.
Truth: Most modern soy foods are not fermented to neutralize toxins in soybeans, and are processed in a way that denatures proteins and increases levels of carcinogens.
Myth: Soy foods provide complete protein.
Truth: Like all legumes, soy beans are deficient in sulfur-containing amino acids methionine and cystine. In addition, modern processing denatures fragile lysine.
Myth: Fermented soy foods can provide vitamin B12 in vegetarian diets.
Truth: The compound that resembles vitamin B12 in soy cannot be used by the human body; in fact, soy foods cause the body to require more B12
Myth: Soy formula is safe for infants.
Truth: Soy foods contain trypsin inhibitors that inhibit protein digestion and affect pancreatic function. In test animals, diets high in trypsin inhibitors led to stunted growth and pancreatic disorders. Soy foods increase the body's requirement for vitamin D, needed for strong bones and normal growth. Phytic acid in soy foods results in reduced bioavailabilty of iron and zinc which are required for the health and development of the brain and nervous system. Soy also lacks cholesterol, likewise essential for the development of the brain and nervous system. Megadoses of phytoestrogens in soy formula have been implicated in the current trend toward increasingly premature sexual development in girls and delayed or retarded sexual development in boys.
Myth: Soy foods can prevent osteoporosis.
Truth: Soy foods can cause deficiencies in calcium and vitamin D, both needed for healthy bones. Calcium from bone broths and vitamin D from seafood, lard and organ meats prevent osteoporosis in Asian countries—not soy foods.
Myth: Modern soy foods protect against many types of cancer.
Truth: A British government report concluded that there is little evidence that soy foods protect against breast cancer or any other forms of cancer. In fact, soy foods may result in an increased risk of cancer.
Myth: Soy foods protect against heart disease.
Truth: In some people, consumption of soy foods will lower cholesterol, but there is no evidence that lowering cholesterol improves one's risk of having heart disease.
Myth: Soy estrogens (isoflavones) are good for you.
Truth: Soy isoflavones are phyto-endocrine disrupters. At dietary levels, they can prevent ovulation and stimulate the growth of cancer cells. Eating as little as 30 grams (about 4 tablespoons) of soy per day can result in hypothyroidism with symptoms of lethargy, constipation, weight gain and fatigue.
Myth: Soy foods are safe and beneficial for women to use in their postmenopausal years.
Truth: Soy foods can stimulate the growth of estrogen-dependent tumors and cause thyroid problems. Low thyroid function is associated with difficulties in menopause.
Myth: Phytoestrogens in soy foods can enhance mental ability.
Truth: A recent study found that women with the highest levels of estrogen in their blood had the lowest levels of cognitive function; In Japanese Americans tofu consumption in mid-life is associated with the occurrence of Alzheimer's disease in later life.
Myth: Soy isoflavones and soy protein isolate have GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) status.
Truth: Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) recently withdrew its application to the FDA for GRAS status for soy isoflavones following an outpouring of protest from the scientific community. The FDA never approved GRAS status for soy protein isolate because of concern regarding the presence of toxins and carcinogens in processed soy.
Myth: Soy foods are good for your sex life.
Truth: Numerous animal studies show that soy foods cause infertility in animals. Soy consumption enhances hair growth in middle-aged men, indicating lowered testosterone levels. Japanese housewives feed tofu to their husbands frequently when they want to reduce his virility.
Myth: Soy beans are good for the environment.
Truth: Most soy beans grown in the US are genetically engineered to allow farmers to use large amounts of herbicides.
Myth: Soy beans are good for developing nations.
Truth: In third world countries, soybeans replace traditional crops and transfer the value-added of processing from the local population to multinational corporations.
For more Information VISIT:
Who are they?
The Weston A. Price Foundation is a nonprofit, tax-exempt charity founded in 1999 to disseminate the research of nutrition pioneer Dr. Weston Price, whose studies of isolated nonindustrialized peoples established the parameters of human health and determined the optimum characteristics of human diets. Dr. Price's research demonstrated that humans achieve perfect physical form and perfect health generation after generation only when they consume nutrient-dense whole foods and the vital fat-soluble activators found exclusively in animal fats.
The Foundation is dedicated to restoring nutrient-dense foods to the human diet through education, research and activism. It supports a number of movements that contribute to this objective including accurate nutrition instruction, organic and biodynamic farming, pasture-feeding of livestock, community-supported farms, honest and informative labeling, prepared parenting and nurturing therapies. Specific goals include establishment of universal access to clean, certified raw milk and a ban on the use of soy formula for infants.
The Foundation seeks to establish a laboratory to test nutrient content of foods, particularly butter produced under various conditions; to conduct research into the "X Factor," discovered by Dr. Price; and to determine the effects of traditional preparation methods on nutrient content and availability in whole foods.
The board and membership of the Weston A. Price Foundation stand united in the belief that modern technology should be harnessed as a servant to the wise and nurturing traditions of our ancestors rather than used as a force destructive to the environment and human health; and that science and knowledge can validate those traditions.
The Foundation's quarterly journal, Wise Traditions in Food, Farming, and the Healing Arts, is dedicated to exploring the scientific validation of dietary, agricultural and medical traditions throughout the world. It features illuminating and thought-provoking articles on current scientific research; human diets; non-toxic agriculture; and holistic therapies. The journal also serves as a reference for sources of foods that have been conscientiously grown and process
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
The powerful - but cautious - American Diabetes Association has announced that it now supports low-carbohydrate diets for people with diabetes who want to lose weight.
In its 2008 Clinical Practice Recommendations, the ADA acknowledges increasing evidence that low-carb diets are as effective in leading to weight loss as diets that focus on lowering fat intake.
Previously the ADA had been reluctant to support low-carb diets, citing a lack of "sufficient scientific evidence." But now, according to Ann Albright, PhD, RD, president of the ADA's Health Care & Education group, "The evidence is clear that both low-carbohydrate and low-fat calorie restricted diets result in similar weight loss at one year." But she added that the ADA is not endorsing either of these weight-loss plans over any other weight loss method.
The ADA's "Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2008" document states that there is now evidence that the most important determinant of weight loss is not a diet's composition, but whether the person dieting can stick with it. It also notes that some people will find it easier to follow a low-carb diet while others will find a low-fat, restricted-calorie diet easier to follow.
The ADA is recommending that because people who follow low-carb diets are likely to replace calories from carbohydrates with calories from fat and protein, they should monitor their lipid profiles. Also, diabetes patients with kidney disease should be aware that high-protein diets can worsen kidney problems.
Reactions from CDEs
Diabetes educators have welcomed the news, noting, however, that the ADA was slow in getting there. "I was thrilled to finally see the ADA come around to what many of us have known and seen in our patients for some time," says Diabetes Health's clinical editor Joy Pape (RN, BSN, CDE, WOCN, CFCN). "I understand that they have to wait for the evidence, but it's too bad so many people with diabetes had to wait so long before they could be taught something that can really help them."
Karen LaVine, RN, CDE, who works for a disease management company, LifeMasters Supported SelfCare in Albuquerque, N.M., says, "It's about time. Hopefully this announcement will open the door a little further on low-carb diets. The ADA is acknowledging that if low carb works for somebody, they should go for it. They're taking a good, pragmatic approach."
Pape says that although she has personally been a proponent of lower-carb plans, her experience leads her to agree with the ADA's statement that whether a person can stick with a diet is more important than the diet's theme. "This makes me hopeful that medical nutritional therapy will now truly be based on individualized plans that take the nuances of each person with diabetes into consideration.
"That would be far better than just playing lip service to the idea of individual differences and continually recommending pretty much the same for everyone."
Judi Wilcox, RD, LDN, CDE, a registered dietician at Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood, Fla., says that in view of the fact that "both low carbohydrate and low fat diets are shown to promote weight loss, now is the time to for practitioners to end the debate and to allow patients to have an active role in choosing a low-carbohydrate diet. The diets do work and should be recommended as a viable option for weight loss." She says low-carbohydrate diets are an effective option for weight loss which has been shown to help improve insulin resistance, delay the onset of diabetes and help prevent complications.
Wilcox adds that the ADA recommends that low-carbohydrate diets should be used for one year and that patients should have their lipid profiles, renal functions, and, in cases of neuropathy, protein intake routinely monitored. "Individualized medical nutrition therapy should be administered by a certified diabetes educator or registered dietitian to teach a low carbohydrate diet that includes foods high in fiber and low glycemic index foods."
Here's a sour little bit of good news for type 2s: taking two tablespoons of vinegar at bedtime can lower fasting glucose levels the next morning by as much as 6 percent.
Researchers at Arizona State University knew that taking vinegar with meals has been shown to lower glucose levels, so they decided to see if it would have any effect during sleep. They studied four men and seven women, ages 40 to 72, who were not taking insulin. The subjects had a fasting glucose of 7.6 mmol/L before the study, compared to 5.5 mmol/L or lower in people without diabetes.
The study called for the participants to measure their fasting glucose levels for three days, then follow a standardized meal plan for two days. At bedtime, one group consumed 1 oz. of cheese with water while the other accompanied the cheese with 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. After two days, participants who had drunk vinegar went vinegar-free for three to five days to allow their systems to eliminate all traces of the substance. They then shifted to cheese and water, trading places with the other group.
After the experiment, researchers found that the vinegar treatment had reduced fasting glucose levels by an average 4 percent, compared to 2 percent in subjects who had received a placebo. The best news was that for six of the participants whose normal fasting glucose was greater than 7.2 mmol/L the drop in glucose averaged 6 percent.
Researchers said that more study will be required before they can declare that vinegar is a useful adjunct therapy in the treatment of diabetes.
Source: Diabetes Care, November 2007
Monday, January 14, 2008
Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) The Amazing Secrets
H2O2 can be used as a marinade or as a vegetable wash or soak to kill bacteria and neutralize chemicals. It can also be used to disinfect your dishwasher or refrigerator. Commercially, it is used in aseptic packaging (the juice boxes you see in the stores) to prevent spoilage and provide shelf life without refrigeration. It is also great to use in the garden. You can use it on trees and plants as a natural fungicide, insecticide (See: Natural Organic Gardening Uses), also as a weed killer, as well as uses for your pets. Your plants and your pets will thank you for using it! H2O2 is also being used as an alternative fuel source!
Mayo Clinic Study Implicates Fungus As Cause Of Chronic Sinusitis --Science Daily
"-Mayo Clinic researchers say they have found the cause of most chronic sinus infections -- an immune system response to fungus. They say this discovery opens the door to the first effective treatment for this problem, the most common chronic disease in the United States.
-An estimated 37 million people in the United States suffer from chronic sinusitis, an inflammation of the membranes of the nose and sinus cavity. Its incidence has been increasing steadily over the last decade. Common symptoms are runny nose, nasal congestion, loss of smell and headaches. Frequently the chronic inflammation leads to polyps, small growths in the nasal passages which hinder breathing.
-"Up to now, the cause of chronic sinusitis has not been known," say the Mayo researchers: Drs. David Sherris, Eugene Kern and Jens Ponikau , Mayo Clinic ear, nose and throat specialists. Their report appears in the September issue of the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings.
-"Fungus allergy was thought to be involved in less than ten percent of cases," says Dr. Sherris. "Our studies indicate that, in fact, fungus is likely the cause of nearly all of these problems. And it is not an allergic reaction, but an immune reaction.""
Pesticides: Topical & Chemical Fact Sheets; Hydrogen Peroxide and Peroxyacetic Acid --U. S. Environmental Protection Agency "The following fact sheet is part of a series relating to chemicals that may be used in Federal Anthrax decontamination efforts. Both hydrogen peroxide and peroxyacetic acid are known as peroxy compounds. Peroxy compounds are microbicides that, when mixed with water, will kill bacteria, fungi, and viruses. These compounds are effective on hard surfaces, including equipment, and are applied in various locations, from hospitals and medical institutions to commercial, industrial, and residential locations."
35% Hydrogen Peroxide is used world wide in municipal water supplies instead of chlorine to disinfect and stop the growth of unwanted organisms. Do you have pure water?
Water 'wake-up call' given by UN --BBC News
"Some 4,000 children die daily from illnesses caused by unclean water
The UN says the world faces a silent emergency because of the continued lack of clean water and sanitation."
Drinking-water disinfectant produces toxic compound
"A chlorine alternative used in the U.S. to disinfect some public drinking water can produce a class of byproducts far more toxic than those generated by chlorine, a new study suggests.
The byproducts, a family of chemicals called iodoacids, have been discovered only in chloramine-treated drinking water in Corpus Christi, Texas. Chloramines are a combination of chlorine and ammonia used in some municipal water supplies as an alternative to chlorine.
Research over the past 30 years has shown that when chlorine interacts with natural organic matter in drinking water, the process can generate byproducts that are linked to an increased risk of certain cancers and birth and developmental defects.
Chlorine - A Special Problem for Drinking Water
"There is increased evidence for an association between rectal, colon and bladder cancer and the consumption of chlorinated drinking water", this according to the President's Council on Environmental Quality.
[Health Note: CHLORINE and other disinfectants added to your drinking water is very BAD]
Sunday, January 13, 2008
Why use honey in cough syrups?
Honey has been used intuitively for hundreds of years as a wonderful natural antibiotic by many different cultures. Today, research undertaken by Dr. Shona Blair at Sydney University's School of Molecular and Microbial Biosciences, has now shown the unusual antibacterial activity of honey, leading to a greater understanding of the ability of honey to kill pathogenic bacteria through several different mechanisms. In studies, honey was effective against many different drug resistant bacteria.
In one scientific test, Dr. Shona Blair used honey to treat E. coli. Dr. Shona Blair saw that honey "attacks" bacteria from several different angles; that the bacteria were overwhelmed and unable to develop resistance, and the bacteria died. In today's world where many antibiotics have become ineffective, honey was able to kill not only the E. coli, but many other types of bacteria.
Honey not only possesses significant antibacterial activity, it has also been shown to actively promote healing by directly stimulating human cells that are important in the immune response to help disease and wounds healing.
*Don't use honey for children under two years of age - there is a microorganism in honey, which is otherwise harmless for children age two and older, that can sometimes make infants ill because of their young digestive system. Alternatives include brown rice syrup, barley, and organic fruit syrups; as substitutions in the recipes use the same amount as honey.
*For longer preservation of cough syrups, you can add 2 tablespoons of vegetable glycerin to each recipe when not already listed as an ingredient in the recipe. Vegetable glycerin is a thick, clear, sweet substance derived from coconut and palm oils and olive oil. It has long been used as a lubricant and preservative. It is sweet tasting but does not affect blood sugar. American herbalist, Edward E. Shook, N.D., preferred vegetable glycerin instead of alcohol for most of his herbal medicinesdue to its natural preservative powers.
Honey Lemon Cough Syrup
Lemon helps promote health by quickly alkalinizing the body and honey will kill any bacteria. This is a perfect choice for a quick cough remedy.
Put a pint of honey in a pan on the stove on low heat (Do not boil honey as this changes its medicinal properties) .
Take a whole lemon and boil in some water in a separate pan for 2-3 minutes to both soften the lemon and kill any bacteria that may be on the lemon skin. Let the lemon cool enough to handle then cut it in slices and add it to the pint of honey on the stove. Let mixture cook on warm heat for about an hour. Then strain the lemon from the honey making sure all lemon seeds are removed. Let cool, then bottle in a jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator. This syrup will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator.
To soothe a cough, take 1Ž2 teaspoon for a 25 lb. child and 1 teaspoon for a 50 lb. child, about 4 times a day or as often as needed. Adults can take 1 tablespoon doses.
Anise Seed Cough Syrup
Anise has been a traditional treatment for coughs, bronchitis and asthma and is now supported by science. The herb contains creosol and alpha-pinene that loosen bronchial secretions and make them easier to cough up. Gently crush 1 tablespoon of anise seed, cover with 1 1Ž2 cups of boiling water. Steep for 30 minutes then strain and simmer remaining liquid down to 1 cup then add 2 cups of honey. Let cool then bottle in a jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator. This syrup will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator.
To soothe a cough, take 1Ž2 teaspoon for a 25 lb. child and 1 teaspoon for a 50 lb. child, about 4 times a day
Horehound Cough Syrup
Horehound has been used for generations as a cure for children's cough, cold and croup. It has expectorant properties that loosen phlegm from the chest. One of horehound's compounds, marrubiin, stimulates bronchial secretions and helps break up congestion
Make an old-time cough remedy by mixing horehound tea with honey. Make a tea by steeping 1 ounce of dried horehound leaves in a pint of boiling water. Allow it to steep only 10 minutes. Strain off the leaves, then measure the quantity of the liquid remaining. Add twice as much honey as liquid, mix well, cool, bottle and refrigerate. This syrup will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator.
To soothe a cough, take 1Ž2 teaspoon for a 25 lb. childand 1 teaspoon for a 50 lb. child, about 4 times a day.
Taken from: Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs
Sinus Congestion and Headache Syrup (Also excellent for fevers and cough)
Steep 1 tablespoon of feverfew, 1Ž2 lemon cut up, 1 teaspoon of fenugreek seeds, 1 teaspoon of thyme leaves in 1 1Ž2 cups of water for 30 minutes. Strain the herbs from the liquid making sure you remove all lemon seeds. Simmer remaining liquid down to 1 cup of water then add 2 cups of honey plus 2 tablespoons of vegetable glycerin. Let cool then bottle in a jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator. This syrup will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator.
Give 1 teaspoon every 4 hours for a 50 lbs. child, 2 teaspoons for a 75 lb child and 1 tablespoon for a 100 lb. child or adult.
Combination Cough Syrup
Add 1 teaspoon each of licorice root, horehound, mullein leaves, thyme leaves, rose hips, marshmallow root and lemon balm leaves to 1 1Ž2 cups of water. Bring herbs and water to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from heat, cover and let steep for 30 minutes. Strain out herbs. Return liquid to heat and bring to a simmer to reduce liquid to 1 cup. While still warm add 1 cup honey, brown rice syrup or organic fruit syrup and 1Ž4 cup vegetable glycerin. Let cool, then bottle in a jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator. This syrup will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator.
Give 1 teaspoon every 4 hours for a 50 lbs. child, 2 teaspoons for a 75 lb child and 1 tablespoon for a 100 lb. child or adult.
Combination Dry Cough Syrup
When children have dry coughs, they need to be treated with moistening herbs with antiviral/antibacterial protection.
1 tablespoon each of cherry bark, thyme, mullein, pleurisy root and oregon grape root added to 1 quart of water.
Bring herbs and water to a boil in a saucepan. Turn heat down to warm, cover and let steep for 30 minutes. Strain out herbs. Return liquid to heat and bring to a simmer to reduce liquid to 1 pint. While still warm add 2 pints of honey. Once cool - bottle, cap, and refrigerate. This syrup will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator.
Give 1 teaspoon every 4 hours for a 50 lbs. child, 2 teaspoons for a 75 lb child and 1 tablespoon for a 100 lb. child or adult.
Combination Wet Cough Syrup
This cough syrup will gently encouragecoughing to clear the lungs of mucus while providing antiviral/antibacterial properties to fight infection.
1 tablespoon each of astragalus, horehound, mullein, garden sage and oregon grape root added to 1 quart of water.
Bring herbs and water to a boil in a saucepan. Turn heat down to warm, cover, and let steep for 30 minutes. Strain out herbs. Return liquid to heat and bring to a simmer to reduce liquid to 1 pint. While still warm add 2 pints of honey. Once cool - bottle, cap, and refrigerate. This syrup will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator.
Give 1 teaspoon every 4 hours for a 50 lbs. child, 2 teaspoons for a 75 lb child and 1 tablespoon for a 100 lb. child or adult.
Give your child lots of fluids in the form of water or teas to help them expel mucus; also, to prevent dehydration from fever.
Mild tasting antiviral herbs for children include astragalus, hyssop, lemon balm, lemon thyme, lemongrass and ginger root.
Take 1 tablespoon each of astragalus, hyssop, lemon balm, lemon thyme, lemongrass plus 1 teaspoon of ginger and add to 1 quart of boiling water. Turn down heat to warm and cover with lid. Let steep for 30 minutes then strain herbs from liquid. Simmer remaining liquid down to 1 pint then add 1 pint of honey and 1Ž4 cup of vegetable glycerin. Once cooled - bottle, cap, and refrigerate. This syrup will keep for 2 months in the refrigerator
The whole family can use this formula for the prevention of viruses or when down with colds and the flu.
Give 1 teaspoon every 4 hours for a 50 lbs. child, 2 teaspoons for a 75 lb child and 1 tablespoon for a 100 lb. child or adult.
For cough or flu, steep two teaspoons of dried hyssop in one cup of boiling water, covered for ten minutes; strain and drink cool for an expectorant or hot to relieve congestion. Hyssop contains marrubiin, the same compound that makes horehound an excellent expectorant. Hyssop and horehound tea can usually be found in grocery or health food stores.
Lemon Balm Tea
For cough or flu, add two teaspoons of dried lemon balm leaves to one cup of boiling water, cover, and remove from heat. Steep for ten minutes then strain herb. Lemon Balm tea can be taken as often as needed.
Licorice Root Tea
Make a tea by putting 1Ž2 teaspoon of licorice root tea in a cup of hot water and steep for 10 minutes; strain. Drink three cups daily to relieve cough, congestion and asthma symptoms. Licorice has soothing and anti-inflammatory properties, and is an expectorant. Licorice root tea can usually be found in grocery or health food stores.
Whooping Cough Tea
1 tablespoon white horehound, 1 tablespoon mullein, 1 tablespoon thyme leaves. Mix all dried ingredients together and store in a jar with a lid. Put 1-2 teaspoons into 1 cup of boiling water. Remove from burner and steep 10 minutes.
Garden thyme has long been considered an effective treatment for whooping cough.
For a 25 lb. child 1Ž2 cup and a 50 lb. child 1 cup, 3 to 4 times a day.
Disclaimer - The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your health- care professional. You should not use the information in this article for self-diagnosis or to replace any prescriptive medication. You should consult with a healthcare professional before starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, before taking any medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem, suffer from allergies, are pregnant or nursing.
Honey resource: Dr. Shona Blair, at Sydney University's School of Molecular and Microbial Biosciences
About the author
Leslee Dru Browning is a 6th generation Medical Herbalist & Nutritionist from the ancestral line of Patty Bartlett Sessions; Pioneer Mid-Wife & Herbalist. Leslee practiced Medical Herbalism and Nutritional Healing for over 25 years and specialized in Cancer Wellness along with Chronic Illness. She now devotes her career to teaching people, through her writing, about Natural Healing from An Herbal Perspective.
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