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This page is an archive from my weekly Naturopathic and Integrative health feedbacks which were dedicated to topics that concern wellness. Feel free to provide comments, post questions, and view my comments to current and past Health Feedbacks under the categories section in the left hand column of my website. 

The latest news on health topics and integrative medicine are now found in my blog and newsletter section.

8/5/2009

Integrative Cancer Care Approaches & The Blood Sugar connection to Cholesterol

 NCCAM (National Center for Complementary & Alternative Medicine) is the lead governmental agency responsible for conducting research on complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). Its recent survey reports that use of CAM is rising among Americans to an estimated use of almost 40% of adults in 2007. (For more statistics on CAM, click here)

One area in medicine that is becoming more integrated is cancer care. Many people are full of fear and confusion when this diagnosis is made. Knowing the statistics for cancer survival with chemotherapy and radiation are not high, many choose to seek out supportive and complementary approaches.

Recently, I was fortunate enough to listen to (2) seminars given by leading researchers in the field of cancer and complementary therapies. This is exciting in that the medical field is validating that the definition of “medicine” can now move beyond the conventional meaning of one approach- pharmaceuticals.

I believe it is very important to seek professional help when dealing with integration of conventional and CAM approaches. It is vital to keep all your health care providers informed of what supplements and medications you are taking at all times. In “the my comment section” I will be discussing some of the latest theories behind integrative cancer care and various herbals and nutritional approaches.

For those scientists who love to read data, here is a link to a study on the mechanism behind quercetin and resveratrol in clinical trials-–absolutely exciting and fascinating to me!

7/30/2009:

Anxiety, the Latest News on Tylenol, & Mercury Mouths

Everyone feels anxious at some point in their life. However, some people experience such excessive fear and worry, that it interferes with their daily functioning and impairs their social interactions. Like any other psychiatric diagnosis, the classification boundary into a mental illness is subjective and requires a skilled mental health expert. This expert must be trained in applying the art and science of medical diagnose. My psychologist colleagues agree that when anxiety becomes intense enough to interfere with the activities of daily living, it has moved beyond the normal adaptative response of human functioning.

According to webmd, there are many types of anxiety disorders. They include panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, post traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder, specific phobias, and generalized anxiety disorder. All of these subtypes contain an underlying trigger which arouses intense fear and promotes excessive anxiety in the individual; it is only the manifestation of a pathological coping measure or response which differs in these specific diagnoses. 

The symptoms of all anxiety disorders include the following: 

-Feelings of panic, fear, and uneasiness

-Uncontrollable, obsessive thoughts

-Repeated thoughts or flashbacks of traumatic experiences

-Nightmares

-Ritualistic behaviors, such as repeated hand washing

-Problems sleeping

-Cold or sweaty hands and/or feet

-Shortness of breath

-Palpitations

-An inability to be still and calm

-Dry mouth

-Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet

-Nausea

-Muscle tension

-Dizziness

In the “my comment section”, I will be discussing holistic and functional approaches to anxiety. I will also provide the links to the latest on the FDA’s Tylenol advisory and mercury fillings.

For more information on anxiety disorders and conventional treatment see webmd

7/24/2009

Why See a Practitioner, Tylenol, & the Lighter Side

Recently, a client sent me a link to the “physician’s for a national health program” (PNHP) page. I have been following the issue of health reform closely and have viewed the integrative health symposium and congressional hearings with the “big 4” in medicine (Hyman, Weil, Ornish, and Oz). I am not a political science major, nor do I claim to know a simple solution to the current “crisis”. Still, with Obama’s August deadline fast approaching, it seems like a good time to post a feedback on this topic.

Below is the link I spoke of. It is a proposal made back in 2003 for National Health Care. I welcome your opinions and feedbacks. In the “my comment section”, I will state my view of what is going on with healthcare and how that influences the integrative medical model.

Link

The Tylenol topic? Please see my link on Saratoga.com about the recent proposal to amend its safety protocol.

Tylenol Link

And, finally, I couldn’t resist….on the lighter side, a four minute video:

http://www.youtube.com/

7/13/2009:

ADD/ADHD & Hair Loss

8% of children aged 4-17 and 3-4% of adults are currently diagnosed with ADD/ADHD. A recent study reported that this diagnose is rising at a rate of 4% per year in older children. Controversy exists on the reason behind this increase. Dr. Mercola recently posted an article on ADD/ADHD and the dangers associated with conventional treatment. Some of the questions purposed in this article were: Are we over-medicating our children in order to keep them in line with the conventional viewpoint of normal? Are we asking too much of young children, expecting them to possess the same ability of impulse control as adults? Is the reason more adults are being diagnosed with this disorder a means to increase drug sales? Or, is it just that our medical system isn’t able to treat an underlying cause of ADD symptoms, so they are bundled together and given a “disease” label? I will be discussing my viewpoint on this subject along with some natural options to be considered for this diagnosis in my short summary. Link to article

7/7/09:

The Many Un-pleasures of Insomnia

After an 8-9 hour workday and completing your extensive household duties, you are exhausted. With your schedule and hours, you would think that it would be very easy to slip into a blissful nights sleep? However, instead of enjoying your un-interrupted and much earned shut eye, you find yourself lying wide-awake in bed, resorting back to last nights maddening sheep-counting. What frustrates you the most about this situation is that no matter what you do, you find you’re unable to “make” yourself fall asleep.

Due to the high stress of modern society and the constant drive for productivity, it is no wonder that sleep disorders are so prevalent in Amercia. It is for this reason, with summer already in mid-swing and the need to stay alert in order to protect yourself from those summer vacationer drivers (see last weeks posting), I chose to write about insomnia.

Below is a link on 33 secrets for a good nights sleep written by Dr. Mercola along with some insomnia stats to ruminate (in-between that droll of sheep counting). In the “my comment section”, I will be discussing what has been helpful to my clients and to me personally, as this is a topic I can that is near to my heart. So stay tuned and stay awake (as if you had a choice…).

www.mercola.com/article/sleep

7/1/2009

Health Feedback of the Week: The Nibble on your neck that is not welcome: Lyme Disease

Ahhh, it’s that wonderful time of year again…time to sit back, relax, and soak up some vitamin D (as I’m typing this it’s raining out). It’s that time were your brain hits the “vacation mode” setting and you pack the car up so high that you can’t see out of the rear-view window. You tune out your fellow vacation road travelers and stare blankly ahead, ignoring their bestowed looks of terror as you swerve back and forth in their path, your second hand ( that should be on the steering wheel), outstretched behind you to break up the side-head thumping match between little Jimmy and Marcus. Excited??

All fond memories aside, it is also the time when those dormant, little, lymph spirochetes reach adulthood. They look beyond their home in the deer, mouse, or other unwilling vectors, and gaze greedily at your neck as if it was the target of an all you can eat buffet at an inexpensive Chinese or “American” food restaurant.

Therefore, I thought this week’s topic should be on lyme education. The following link provides a conventional overview of lyme disease from emedicine :

Lyme disease is tricky for most doctors to manage. The diagnostics are shady, designed originally as a surveillance tool by the CDC in asymptomatic patients, and controversies exist between what antibiotics to use, for how long, and if chronic management is an issue. (As a side note, the movie, “Under our skin” is worth a peek underourskin.com. )

June 21, 2009

Hormones, Alternative Health, & Organic Gets the OK from the AMA

Recently, Newsweek wrote an article that condemned the January Oprah Winfrey show which discussed bio-identical hormonal replacement with guest Suzanne Somers. In the article link below, Dr. Mercola discusses the politics behind the use of bio-identical hormones and traditional Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). Side effects and suggestions for hormonal balance are also discussed in his review.

More HRT information

And, yes, you read me right; the AMA has approved the promotion of sustainable and organic foods, linking diet to health! (What a concept!)

Be sure to read the “my comment section.” Here, I will review the importance of natural solutions to hormonal balance which support women through one of life’s transitional periods (no pun intended). I will also give a review on the new organic AMA.

6/17/2009

Cholesterol, Red Rice Yeast, & Quality

20% of people who use statin medications to lower cholesterol end up stopping their medication due to the side effects. The most common side effect is muscle pain which is most likely due to the drugs lowering effect on coQ10 (a ubiquinone that is important for muscle and heart health). Many of you already have read my viewpoint on the “cholesterol controversy,” but it’s worth another mention in a new light:

A recent article on CCNhealth.com explored the efficacy of red rice yeast to lower cholesterol. This article was interesting to me, because it explained clinical trials which compared drugs to a natural supplement that has been used in China for many years, red rice yeast. The active compound, monacolin K, in red rice yeast, seems to be the active constituent involved in its lipid lowering effect.

This article discusses two studies. One study found red rice’s efficacy to be essentially similar in therapeutic effects to low dose lovastatin. The second study discussed had results that concluded that red rice yeast in combination with fish oil was more effective than simvastatin (generic zocor).

Above these interesting findings, I liked how this article explained the relevance of quality supplements. It also warned against people running out to their local health food store to hoard red rice yeast and swallow it down like candy (Embellishment added for your reading enjoymentJ).

In the “my comment section”, I will discuss the importance of addressing the cause of “high” cholesterol and the importance of quality supplements. I will also mention some of the newest functional medical tests which assess cardiovascular risk factors that go beyond cholesterol levels. Furthermore, I will provide another link by a cardiologist from Michigan who gives a beautiful summary on how just measuring cholesterol will miss the mark on heart disease.

Link of article

6/10/2009

Weight Loss Resistance and Genes:

It’s NOT the chips, it’s your genes being mean!

We have all heard about insulin resistance, leptin resistance, and now cortisol resistance, in relation to healthy weight management and blood sugar control. Below are a few short articles that summarize how genetics may play a role in why some can lose weight easier than others. Many of my clients are already very aware on how certain foods can modify genetic expression. In the “my comment section,” I will be discussing the various avenues which I explore with clients so they don’t have to be victims when these pesky genes come into play.

Weight loss resistant gene perilipin:

medicalnewstoday.

Insulin Resistant Gene:

springerlinkthe

jcem.endojournals

June 3, 2009:

Vaccinations – A Resource of Arguments from Both Sides

At 10:30 am on June 2, 2009, the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) held a rally at the legislative office building in Albany, NY. The rally was in defense for the right of parents to choose whether or not to vaccinate their children. And, while many may have a strong opinion from either side on the benefits or risks of immunizations, I believe that parents should be allowed to make the decision for themselves, not due to governmental mandates.

In March, I attended the Vaccination Information Seminar in CT. I was informed by the president of NVIC that New Jersey currently mandates all childhood vaccinations to be completed in order for a child to enter into the state school educational system. Religious and philosophical objections are not permitted. New York is predicated to follow New Jersey’s mandates.

I wanted to use this week’s feedback is to provide parents with information and resources from both sides of the immunization argument. My goal is to empower my readers with easy access to information from both sides in order for them to make decision that feels most comfortable and truthful to them. I have provided a brief synopsis and summary of reference articles and online documentation from both sides in the comment section. Below is a link that provides an overview of this subject along with additional references. As always, all of my clients are more than welcome to contact me with any questions.

Here is an overview of the arguments by David Crank:

Vaccines: Both Sides

5/28/09:

The Perfect Patient, Pollution & Pesticides

Ok guys, I couldn’t chose again this week, I might have created a theme from last week!!

1. What makes the Perfect Patient?

I had the pleasure of watching a seminar by Dr. Weil this weekend and I was impressed at his “Naturopathic” perspective and approach to health. In this seminar, he identified (7) common characteristics of patients who experienced “spontaneous healing.” I was inspired at the reminder and wanted to share it with you. I’ve included a link to Dr. Weil’s website if you would like more information.

Dr-Weil-Head-to-Toe-Wellness-Guide.

2. Pollution: Yikes, new study finds that pollution can change your DNA patterns in 3 days! Hello Hybrids…

Pollution and DNA Link

3. Pesticides: The importance of organic foods as the first step in preventing the upward trend of childhood obesity and adult diseases:

www.organic-center.org

Be sure to read my comment section on how you can take steps to increase your body’s innate healing responses to items 2 and 3.

5/21/2009:

This Week’s Feedback: Tuna, Mercury, Cats & Bras

Every week, I go through a minor brain freeze. I sit in front of my computer, staring at a blank screen, as I strain my mind to think of the most relevant topic to review for my health feedback. It can get intense! This week, I decided to relieve my mind and do something crazy- not choose! Therefore, I have covered three topics in this one week’s feedback. (Maybe that’s crazier?)

Many of my beloved clients have asked me about the safety of eating tuna related to its mercury content. Therefore, this was the first topic I decided to expand on. I even included recommendations on fish selection in the “my comment” section. I also posted a link to a 6 minute video about one of the most renowned nutritionist in research, Dr. Weston Price. This video will explain the “cat” connection. Finally, to “hold it all together”, slight pun intended, I felt that the article on bras and cancer risk was important to discuss for all women (and the men that love them).

So, enjoy the read! I’m sure you’ll be just as curious as I was to see how it will weave all together.

Your-Tuna-is-Getting-More-Toxic.

The-greatest-nutrition-researcher-of-the-twentieth-century.

Can-Wearing-Your-Bra-Cause-Cancer.

5/13/2009:

The Gut-Brain Connection

Dr. Trent Nichols, MD, author of Optimal Digestive Health, states that 95% of your serotonin receptors and 80% of your immunity is located in your gut. This week’s health feedback discusses why the answer to your mood may not be in your head, but in your stomach!

Reference Scientific Article: Role of serotonin in the pathophysiology of the irritable bowel syndrome

4/6/2009:

Why Anger Makes you Stupid: The Importance of Heart Coherence

We are the only culture in the world that separates the mind from the body. In other countries and systems of medicine, this connection is innate and has never been severed. (2) It is only after we disconnected our emotions from our body, using the Descartes model of medicine, that the subject of mind-body medicine became popularized. Millions of dollars later in investments for clinical trials, surveys, and high tech instrument measurements, our society has begun to re-awaken to what was our fundamental understanding at birth- our emotions and state of mind affect our overall health. (3, 2, 1) Could it be that this disconnection from our heart is why even the most advanced medications and clinical drug trials are not reversing the downward trend in cardiovascular mortality rates? Take for example the following statistics from the Heartmath institute: (1)

An international study of 2,829 people between the ages of 55 and 85 found that individuals who reported the highest levels of personal “mastery” – feelings of control over life events – had a nearly 60%lower risk of death compared with those who felt relatively helpless in the face of life ’s challenges. B. Penninx et al. Am J Epidemiol. 1997; 146(6)

According to a Mayo Clinic study of individuals with heart disease, psychological stress was the strongest predictor of future cardiac events, such as cardiac death, cardiac arrest and heart attacks. T. Allison et al. Mayo Clin Proc. 1995; 70(8)

A recent study of heart attack survivors showed that patients’ emotional state and relationships in the period after myocardial infarction are as important as the disease severity in determining their prognosis. S. Thomas et al. Am J Crit Care. 1997; 6(2)

In a study of 5,716 middle-aged people, those with the highest self-regulation abilities were over 50 times more likely to be alive and without chronic disease 15 years later than those with the lowest self-regulation scores. R. Grossarth-Maticek & H. Eysenck. Person Individ Diff. 1995; 19(6)

Below is a 10 link from heartmath on the importance of the human heart on health. Watch how the heart has a mind of its own and check my comment section for links to heart-coherence exercises for healthier heart health.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jT5kHw3D7Fk&feature=related

Sources:

1. Heart Math Institute: http://www.heartmath.org/

2. Osher Center for Integrative Medicine: http://www.youtube.com/watch

3. NCCAM: http://nccam.nih.gov/

4/29/09

This Week’s Topic: The Swine Influenza Pandemic

For the past few days I’ve been following the latest facts and statistics on the Swine Flu Pandemic using the CDC and WHO website. As a Health Care Provider, these two sites provide comprehensive coverage of health alerts along with updated guidelines for practitioners. I’ve been compiling information from these sites, along with others, in order to create this week’s health feedback.

This week, my goal is to empower you with balanced information as an alternative to succumbing to the blind fear-producing drama. In the “my comments” section, there are compilations taken directly from the CDC (Press release 4/28/2009), WHO, Mercola, and OCA. I have also provided my viewpoint and some suggestions for preserving your health at the end of the article.

All my clients are more than welcome to discuss these with me. And, for my dedicated readers who are far away, you will want to discuss these and other suggestions with your integrative health care practitioner. The goal should be to determine the correct dosage and protocol that will work best for your individualized lifestyle.

In health, Dr. Sarah

Reference Articles:

CDC: cdc.gov/swineflu/

WHO: disease/swineflu/en/index.html

Dr. Mercola: 2009/04/29/Swine-Flu.aspx

OCA:organicconsumers.org/

4/22/2009

Health Feedback of the Week: Drug Induced Nutrient Depletion

Part of my training in pharmacology and nutrition addressed how many pharmaceutical drugs have an effect on the body greater then the specific biochemical pathway they manipulate. Hence, side effects exist. In this week’s highlighted ihealthtube podcast, Dr. Hyla Cass, MD gives a wonderful summary on drug-nutrient depletions. She also discusses how dietary choices have an effect on mood and overall health, and the importance of treating the cause of the dis-ease in order to create lasting results. Be sure to see my comments on some common examples of Nutrient Depletion from common medications.

ihealthtube.com

4/15/2009

Health Feedback of the week: Coconut Oil’s Many Benefits

In this short clip on iHealthTube, Dr. Bruce Fife, ND, and author of The Coconut Oil Miracle, discusses some of the positive effects of coconut oil. Specifically, Dr. Fife points out how coconut oil is beneficial for blood sugar balance and has protective and regenerating effects on the circulatory system. For more information and references, be sure to check out my comment under the same heading.

ihealthtube.com link

4/8/2009:

Diet and Skin Health: Does what you eat affect how you look?

Although most conventional dermatologists will argue that food and diet has no connection to healthy skin, clinically and personally, my findings lead me to the opposite conclusion. In my experience, diet plays a key role in skin’s luster, clarity, and overall health.

The following article was exerted from the American Journal of Nutrition. In this article, Dr. Neil Mann from RMIT discusses his recent clinical findings on the correlation between diet and acne in adult males. This controlled, randomized study set to compare acne severity between men who consumed a low Glycemic Load (GL) diet with men who consumed a typical Standard American Diet (SAD). Not surprisingly, the results showed more favorable to the men who had consumed a low GL diet. (The article will define Glycemic load to those who aren’t familiar with the term).

There is one flaw to this study that I will discuss along with other connections to skin health in the comments section of this week’s feedback. Enjoy!

Dr. Mann’s study

3/31/2009:

Why Bleached Bread is Bogus.

By now, most of you are aware that it’s important to be a conscious consumer of what goes into your body. To follow up on last week’s topic of GMO’s, I’m posting an article by Dr. Mercola that will make you re-consider that next slice of gooey, chewy, and bleachy (J) white flour.

To find out a solution that is good for your health AND taste buds, be sure to read my commen

Bleached-Flour

3/25/2009: This Weeks Topic: Don’t Put that in Your Mouth!

A lecture on Genetically Modified Food

What’s a GMO? From Responsible Technology. Org Link

Every plant and animal is made of cells, each of which has a center called a nucleus. Inside every nucleus there are strings of DNA, half of which is normally inherited from the mother and half from the father. Short sequences of DNA are called genes. These genes operate in complex networks that are finely regulated to enable the processes of living organisms to happen in the right place and at the right time

A GMO (genetically modified organism) is the result of a laboratory process of taking genes from one species and inserting them into another in an attempt to obtain a desired trait or characteristic, hence they are also known as transgenic organisms. This process may be called either Genetic Engineering (GE) or Genetic Modification (GM); they are one and the same.

Genetically modified foods (GMOs) are present in our food supply today, because most people aren’t educated about them! Earlier this week, I had the privilege of shadowing with Dr. Robert Lang, MD, an integrative endocrinologist. He is distributing the following information on GMOs to all his patients, and I would like to do the same for you.

Please download or listen to the following link, about 1 hour in length, and share it with everyone you know and love, along with your favorite politicians. I have written a short summary of its contents in the my comment section, for those who are followers of Mr. Cliff’s Notes.

Listen here: Don’t Put That in Your Mouth! By Jeffrey Smith

AUDIO

Jeffrey Smith is a renowned expert on the health dangers of GMO foods. He is also the executive director of the Institute for Responsible Technology and the Campaign for Healthy Eating in America. His first book, Seeds of Deception, is the world’s best selling book on the topic. His latest book, DNA Roulette, documents 65 health risks of the foods American eat everyday

Sign a petition to President Obama:

3/18/2009

This Week’s Topic: Food Allergies, Sensitivities, and Health

My former professor, researcher, and chief medical advisor for lab analysis and nutraceuticals, Dr. David Brady ND, DC, CCN, shared the following links with his colleagues last Friday on food sensitivities. I wanted to share it with all of you and discuss how food allergies and sensitivities affect health under “my comments

“The Alcat Test for Food and Chemical Sensitivity had recently been featured in two different news programs. Please click the links below to view the stories”. ABC News 4, SC Fox, Houston

3/11/2009:

Healthy Bones Are Not Just About Calcium

If calcium was the main factor that controlled bone density, Americans would be leaders in bone health. However, this is not the case. We have one of the highest rates of osteoporosis in the industrialized world; whereas Japan has the lowest rate, and interestingly enough the lowest consumption of dairy (GASP). This is because bone health isn’t just dependent on calcium intake, but on it’s absorption and utilization.

A lot of my patients ask me about bone health, especially women concerned with osteoporosis. Therefore, I wanted to share this link with you about Dr. Thompson’s book, The Calcium Lie which was featured on Dr. Mercola’s website. I invite you to read this article and to then view my comment on tips for maintaining healthy bones. I explain the many factors that are important in bone health and why I don’t regularly recommend a calcium stand alone supplement to address osteoporosis concerns.

Link here

3/3/2009:

Restoration of Adrenal Function: A look at the Body’s Hormones

STRESS- it’s the new buzzword in medicine. It is being attributed to almost all disease processes from cardiovascular disorders to psychological diagnoses. As you know, the body and mind are not inherently separate; however, that’s a whole other topic.

This week, I wanted to give people some take home advice on how to feel better and deal with this issue in an integrated mind-body perspective. I have discussed how to do this in the “my comment” posts of the health feedback section. Most people are not aware that balance with the endocrine system is important for overall wellness and stress management.

Therefore, for you science junkies, I have included an article by Dr. Borkin, N.M.D, on hormones and health. I thought it gave a wonderful explanation how everything is connected and the importance of an integrated perspective on “stress management”.

Read article

2/25/2009

The Biology of Perception: Bruce Lipton explains Epigenomics

I have recently become very interested in functional medicine and nutriogenomics. Dr. Bruce Lipton’s book, Biology of Belief, was my first introduction to epigenomics. Below is the links to the first part of his series on youtube and the National Health Institutes funding of this “new” science:

Bruce Lipton

NIH funds epigenetics

2/17/2009

A Healing Herb that counter-effect the hazards of cell phones.

Boy, do I have great news for your text and cell phone junkies!!! I came across the link below when reading one of my weekly updates from Designs for Health. This pub med article states how the use of Gingko Biloba decreased oxidative damage and pathology to the brain from the use of cell phones. Click the link for the abstract on pub med and be sure to read my comment on why I think this information will thrill all you oil lovers!

Read Link Here

2/11/2009

This week’s topic: Splenda, O calories, big health costs?

Happy Valentine’s week! This week’s topic is on an article posted by Dr. Mercola on Splenda. I thought this was a good topic, as I get asked by many people about this sweetner. It seems that I see many folks carrying around these yellow packets and shaking them on food like, well, sugar. J Read below to find out more information on why it may not be your highest choice to use this more than in moderation and why Dr. Sarah is reconsidering her gum options. Also, find out the one gimmick that works for weight loss in my comment section!

Read here

2/4/2009:

Cholesterol in the Media

Cholesterol: a controversial subject for many in the natural health care profession. Many natural practitioners are sitting down to read the fine print and the 26 page summary of the Farmington study. The results and statistical manipulation is staggering. This Business week article, referenced to me by Dr. Macallan, is a wonderful 6 page summary on the ins and out of cholesterol medication. It might just make you stop and think about running to your doctor for the next miracle combination of a cholesterol drug.

Read here

1/29/2009

Mercury Found in High Fructose Corn Syrup

The following news brief was brought to my attention from www.organicconsumers.org :

In a new study published Monday in the scientific journal, Environmental Health, mercury was found in nearly 50 percent of tested samples of commercial high fructose corn syrup. The news is disturbing given that this ingredient is present in a large portion of processed American foods. According to David Wallinga, M.D., co-author of the study, “Given how much high fructose corn syrup is consumed by children, it could be a significant additional source of mercury never before considered. We are calling for immediate changes by industry and the FDA to help stop this avoidable mercury contamination of the food supply.” A separate study by the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy detected mercury in nearly one-third of 55 popular brand-name food and beverage products where high fructose corn syrup is the first or second highest labeled ingredient-including products by Quaker, Hershey’s, Kraft and Smucker’s.

Straight to the source

1/22/2009:

The Importance of High Quality Supplements

In the link below, Dr. Mercola recommends his top three choices of supplementation for general health. He also reviews how important it is to be conscious of the quality of the supplements you are putting in your body. Of course, as a Naturopathic Doctor, my job is to use the toolbox from nature to assess each individual on a case by case basis. It is important for me to stay open minded and tuned into what each individual needs, so a one size fits all approach doesn’t fit into my paradigm. However, I feel Dr. Mercola gives good support to back up his recommendations. Be sure to read my comment on what key ingredient Dr. Mercola may have forgotten to mention in his formula.

Read here

1/13/2009:

The Effectiveness of Integrative Healthcare

I was fortunate enough to receive the following link from a colleague. It is an article posted by Deepak Chopra, Andrew Weil, and Rustum Roy. It provides wonderful insight into the health care system today. My comment is posted below the article and in the health feedback post section.

Read here

1/6/2009:

The Next Craze in Weight Loss

The Acai berry is the next hot thing. Its appearance on the Oprah Winfrey show made it accessible to the public and fueled frenzy in its popularity. Two well known physicians, Dr. Perricone and Dr. Oz, have backed up its healing properties, making it more enticing. True the acai berry contains many fine qualities including high levels of antioxidants, fiber, and healthy omega fatty acids, but what’s the deal with the weight loss craze? The following article looks at the acai berry in detail.

Read here

12/30/2009 Please see article on Conventional and Natural Approaches to Depression and Mood disorders Read here

12/22/2008:

Why are men and woman so different?

It’s the holiday season, a time to have fun and pass on information about communicating. I hope you enjoy this video about the differences between how men and woman think.

View here

FDA admits that mercury is unsafe

Recently, the FDA has admitted the damaging neurological effects of silver fillings for children and pregnant woman. Although they do not address the general population as a whole, it’s a start in the right direction for all consumers to learn about the benefits of using porcelain fillings, instead of amalgams.

Read full article here:

12/10/2008:

The dilemma of polypharmacy

I found this article on Mercola’s website, while looking for drug-interactions and thought this was an interesting article to share.

Highlight:

• Ibuprofen can cause bleeding ulcers when taken with prescription painkillers. • Combining ginkgo biloba with blood-thinning drugs like aspirin or warfarin can lead to severe bleeding. • The antibiotic erythromycin can lead to a toxic reaction when combined with certain cholesterol-lowering drugs, potentially leading to kidney failure.

Unfortunately, most drug interactions are discovered by accident and entirely too late — or are not discovered at all because people may not equate their symptoms to their medications. <!–[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]–> <!–[endif]–>

Read full article here:

12/3/2008:

The Power of Probiotics

What would a Naturopathic Website be without a discussion on probiotics. Probiotics are the “good” bacteria that reside in your gut and help with digestion, assimilation, immunity and overall health. In fact, yeast infections and athlete’s foot are not the only symptoms from an imbalance of healthy gut flora. Candidasis can cause vague symptoms such as fatigue, body aches and pains, sugar cravings and hormonal imbalances.

Read more.

11/26/2008:

How to indulge without the bulge.

‘Tis the season for celebrating our gratitude for life’s gifts with family and friends. It’s a time for gathering together and reflecting on the past, present, and future with those that we love. One thing that unites all humans together is food, because most people need to eat to live. Food provides life-giving nutrients to our body, mind, and souls. I found this article on ABC news and thought I’d share it. It is looking at food in a more mechanistic viewpoint, counting calories and BEING DISCIPLINED, but as always, balance and holism is my goal. I invite you to read this article for good tips on a grounded perspective of holiday eating, but also to read my comment about how food is more than just calories.

Read here

11/19/2008:

The Leptin Connection

Many of my clients have asked me about leptin and its connection to weight loss. I stumbled across an article from the great Dr. Mercola. Read this excerpt and decide for yourself: Is treating blood sugar in diabetes really helping with our obesity epidemic?

Excerpt:

Recent compelling research reveals that the two most important organs that will determine whether you develop type 2 diabetes or not are your liver and your brain — and it is their ability to listen to leptin that will determine this. Leptin is produced by fat and largely influences, if not controls, the manifest functions of the hypothalamus in your brain, including:

• Reproduction • Thyroid function • Adrenal function • Sympathetic nervous system

Leptin also tells your body:

• How much energy it has, and whether it needs more (signaling you to “be hungry”) • Whether it should get rid of some energy (saying “stop being hungry”) • Most importantly, what to do with the energy already there (reproduce cells or focus on cellular repair)

Read full article here:

11/12/2008:

How Healthy is Bottled Water?

Who would have thought that tap water has higher purity standards set forth by the FDA than bottled water? This means that although tap water is far from being free of contaminates, it is actually regulated more thoroughly than the free market enterprise of bottled water. In fact, several studies have demonstrated that bottled water can contain more toxic substances than unfiltered water from the tap.

Read more here

Read about how bottled water affects the environment here

11/5/2008:

The role of stress and emotions on health

Recently, I attended a teleseminar with Ellen Britt which discussed the nature of stress and its effects on the body, mind, and spirit. Most people are aware that chronic stress can cause blood pressure changes and heart problems. Physiologically, this is explained by the fact that the brain releases the hormones cortisol, epinephrine and norepinephrine in a response to stress. These hormones cause increases in blood pressure and blood sugar, disrupt the heart’s rhythm, and can wreak havoc on the immune system. High levels of these hormones can also disrupt brain chemistry by decreasing production of serotonin causing one to become more fatigued and to feel more down. On the spirit level, stress has the potential to keep one’s focus on the causative “negative” event which disconnects one from their natural state of joy.

Click on this link on how stress affects your immune system.

Please read my comment in the category section of my website. How does stress affect you? What mind-body spirit tools do you use that help?

10/30/2008:

The Positive Effect of the Economy on American Health

Excerpts:

As the financial crisis deepens, more Americans are cutting back on eating out and staying home to cook their own meals. According to the NPD Group, a market research company, restaurant meals now cost on average about three times what it takes to make a similar meal at home. While fast-food restaurants are maintaining a relatively steady customer flow, sit-down restaurants are seeing sales plummet. According to Edward E. Leamer, director of the UCLA Anderson Forecast, “There has been so much of a focus on Wall Street and the credit problem, but the real source of the problem in the fourth quarter is going to be consumer spending, and restaurants are one of the canaries in this coal mine.” Read article

The economic crisis is having a positive impact on the diets of children in thousands of schools across the U.S. School budgets may be shrinking, but family farmers are filling in the gap with low-cost locally-grown foods. It’s getting prohibitively expensive for family farmers to ship their goods to customers thousands of miles away, so groups like the National Farm to School program, a national network of community-based food systems that assist farmers and improve student health, are connecting schools directly to local farms. More than 8,700 schools across the U.S. are actively participating in these programs, which can vary everywhere from simply stocking locally grown foods in the cafeterias to developing vegetable gardens on school property. Read article

10/22/2008:

 The Flu vaccine

Please read the following and post your feedback.

Article

Excerpt:

Another influenza season is beginning, and the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will strongly urge Americans to get a flu shot. In fact, the CDC mounts a well-orchestrated campaign each season to generate interest and demand for flu shots. But a recent study published in the October issue of the Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine found that vaccinating young children against the flu appeared to have no impact on flu-related hospitalizations or doctor visits during two recent flu seasons. At first glance, the data did suggest that children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years derived some protection from vaccination in these years. But after adjusting for potentially relevant variables, the researchers concluded that “significant influenza vaccine effectiveness could not be demonstrated for any season, age, or setting” examined.

10/15/2008:

Cell phones and radiation

Please read the following and post your feedback:

Article

Excerpt:

How Cellphone Radiation Affects Your Cells

Radiation from cell phones is too weak to heat biological tissue or break chemical bonds in cells, but the radio waves they emit may still change cell behavior. Scientists exposed 10 female volunteers to radiation at 900 megahertz from GSM phones to simulate an hour-long phone call.

They screened 580 different proteins in their skin cells and found that the numbers of two proteins were altered in all of the volunteers: one protein increased by 89 percent, the other decreased by 32 percent.

This study shows that even without heating, molecular level changes take place in response to exposure to cell phone frequency electromagnetic radiation.

Sources: New Scientist February 23, 2008, BMC Genomics 2008, 9:77

10/8/08:

Prescription Drugs: 4th leading cause of death in the United States

Please read the below link and post comments or questions:

Article

Excerpt:

Yet, adverse drug reactions — from “properly” prescribed drugs — are actually the fourth leading cause of death in the United States. Only heart disease, cancer, and stroke kill more Americans than drugs prescribed by medical doctors. Reactions to prescription drugs kill more than twice as many Americans as HIV/AIDS or suicide. Fewer die from accidents or diabetes than adverse drug reactions. And this does NOT include the negative drug reactions in outpatients, cases of malpractice, or instances where the drugs were not taken as directed. <!–[if !supportLineBreakNewLine]–> <!–[endif]–

9/30/08:

Is Soy really healthy?

Below is a link to a video by Dr. Sherrill Sellman, ND. Please watch (about 7 minutes) and feel free to post comments or questions.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RdFVnJQJCRI&feature=related

9/24/2008: Organic foods http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2005/04/13/organic-diet.aspx

 
 
If people believe that eating organic food makes them feel better, they are probably right, explained scientists. According to an experiment, rats that ate organic food were healthier than rats that ate conventional diets. The experiment included 36 rats that were fed on three diets. While each diet included the same ingredients (potatoes, carrots, peas, green kale, apples and rapeseed oil) three different cultivation strategies were used:

  • Organically–with low input of fertilizer, without pesticides
  • Minimally fertilized–with low input of fertilizer, with pesticides
  • Conventionally–with high input of fertilizer, with pesticides

The same diets were fed to the rats throughout their lives and health measurements began at 19 weeks of age after weaning of their first litter. Health Benefits of Organically Grown Foods Scientists found that, compared to rats that ate conventional diets, organically fed rats experienced various health benefits. Researchers found the rats that ate organic or minimally fertilized diets had:

  • Improved immune system status compared to rats that ate conventional diets.
  • Better sleeping habits.
  • Less weight and were slimmer than rats that fed on other diets.
  • Higher vitamin E content in their blood (for organically fed rats).

Even though the experiment clearly demonstrates the positive effects of organically grown foods compared to conventionally grown foods on the health of rats, the results cannot be directly correlated to humans. Thus, further research needs to be done in order to discover the relationship between human health and organically grown foods. Danish Research Centre for Organic Farming Science Daily March 29, 2005

9/16/2008 This weeks question, from an excerpt in Mercola.com:

The cost of Health: What’s the payback for preventative medicine? American medical care is the most expensive in the world, and it is definitely not worth every penny. A recent study by the Commonwealth Fund highlights the stark contrast between what the United States spends on its health system and the quality of care it delivers. The report shows that the United States spends more than twice as much on each person for health care as most other industrialized countries. But it has fallen to last place among those countries in preventing avoidable deaths through use of timely and effective medical care. The latest American Human Development Index by the Social Science Research Board also reveals shocking results: the U.S. ranks 42nd in global life expectancy, and 34th in survival of infants. Additionally, a 30- year gap now exists in the average life expectancy between Mississippi, in the Deep South, and Connecticut, in prosperous New England. Huge disparities have also opened up in income, health and education depending on where people live in the US, according to the report. These findings are likely to provide supporting evidence for the notion that the nation’s health care system needs to be fixed.

Sources:

My comment: As a Naturopathic Doctor who practices in New York State, I am not recognized as primary care, and as such, my services are not covered by insurance. Many people view this as a hurdle. I see it as an opportunity. I view the Naturopathic’s guidiing priniciple, “Doctor as teacher,” as a mission statement to teach my clients to re-gain control of their own health. I try to teach all my clients that although the initial investment to a change in lifestyle, such as buying whole, organic foods or purchasing healing herbs for your specific condition may appear high, it pays in dividends. The wonderful thing about natural medicine is that it actually brings balance back to the body, so the body doesn’t become depedent on drugs, or supplements for that matter, forever. I feel that a good Naturopathic Doctor always addresses the cause of the dis-ease in order to prevent problems in the future. Think of it this way… just as you need to exercise more at the beginning of getting your body in shape, you may need to invest more time and money in order to get your health back in shape; but, once you have reached your goal, it is much easier to maintain it than to continue in a downward slide and pick up the pieces as they fall apart.