Tuesday, September 30, 2014
"We recently reported on a study out of the University of California, Los Angeles. The short of it: Researchers found that sixth-graders who spent just five days at an outdoor camp, away from their electronic devices, improved remarkably at reading emotion in other people's faces.
The experiment comes with lots of caveats. It was small (roughly 100 kids). And removing screens from the equation did not, by itself, improve these kids' social skills. What likely led to the improvement was the fact that, instead of texting or gaming, the students were working together, face-to-face, constantly decoding each other's expressions, voice tone and posture.
The take-home: Social skills require constant maintenance.
The more practice kids get reading emotion in voices and posture, the better they'll be able to navigate the turmoil of early adolescence.
That kind of social learning just won't fit in the palm of your hand."
In our digital world, are young people losing the ability to read emotions?
Monday, September 29, 2014
Published on Sep 15, 2014
"The team studied 18 years of data from almost 18,000 commuters in the UK aged 18-65. The data took in various aspects of psychological health including feelings of worthlessness, unhappiness, sleepless nights and capability of dealing with problems.
Factors that are known to affect well-being, such as income, having children, moving house or job, and relationship changes were also taken into account by the researchers.
The results suggest that people benefited from improved well-being when they stopped driving and started walking or cycling to work. Commuters reported that they felt better able to concentrate and "less under strain" if they used these methods of travel, rather than driving a car. "
"Hearing that your blood sugars show you are diabetic (when you didn’t know it) or that your C-reactive protein (CRP) levels show extremely high levels of inflammation are not things any of us wants to hear. Especially when we know that the root cause of being sick is our diet or our lifestyle.
The truth is that the Stallmans have been duped into eating a diet that has made them sick. They, like many, believed that “low fat” and whole grains were healthy and that diet drinks helped them lose weight. They didn’t get the tools or information they needed to care for themselves, so they kept on eating convenience foods that tasted amazing, were affordable and were easy to make.
The Stallmans have amazed me. For the past month, they have followed my program earnestly and have celebrated several successes and have worked through some hurdles as well. In the last couple of weeks they have learned how to create low glycemic (sugar) meals that remind them of their Italian and French heritage but without the flour, dairy, sugar, alcohol, or other toxic ingredients they once relied on."
Sunday, September 28, 2014
"The legislation comes on the heels of new research released by scientists at EWGand Duke University that found evidence of exposure to TDCPP (also known as TDCIPP), a fire retardant linked to cancer, in the bodies of all 22 mothers and 26 children tested. The average level of BDCIPP, a metabolite formed when TDCPP breaks down in the body, was nearly five times higher in children than in the mothers. In the most extreme case, a child had 23 times more BDCIPP than the mother."
"Since being banned, the average human body burdens of DDT and PCB have been declining. Since their ban in 1972, the PCB body burden is 1/100 of what it was in the early 1980s (Weschler 2009). Monitoring programs of European breast milk samples have shown that PBDE levels are increasing. An analysis of PBDE content in breast milk samples from Europe, Canada, and the US shows that levels are 40 times higher for North American women than for Swedish women, and that levels in North America are doubling each year."
“The general population of the U.S. has constant, chronic exposure to these chemicals,” said Heather Stapleton, assistant professor of environmental chemistry at Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment. “In some homes, it’s a much higher concentration than in other homes” – depending on myriad factors including the house’s size and ventilation rates, where the furniture was bought and what kind it is, and the type of home insulation.
“We focused on four or five flame retardants in this study (including TPhP, ip-TPhP and EH-TBB), but there are actually dozens if not hundreds of flame retardants out there,” she said. “They’re also used in electronics, cars, planes and more.”
"TBBPA is one of the 75 different brominated flame retardants (BFRs) and the largest BFR in terms of production volume globally, used to improve fire saftey. TBBPA is produced in Israel, the United States, Jordan, Japan and China. 70% of TBBPA is used as a reacted flame retardant in electrical and electronic equipment and 20% is used as an additive to plastics. The use of TBBPA is permitted worldwide."
"TBBPA is an endocrine disruptor and immunotoxicant. As an endocrine disruptor, TBBPA may interfere with both estrogens and androgens. Further, TBBPA structurally mimics the thyroid hormone thyroxin (T4) and can bind more strongly to the transport protein transthyretin than T4 does, likely interfering with normal T4 activity. TBBPA likely also suppresses immune responses by inhibiting expression of CD25 receptors on T cells, preventing their activation, and by reducing natural killer cell activity.
TBBPA degrades to bisphenol A and to TBBPA dimethyl ether, and experiments in zebrafish (Danio rerio) suggest that during development, TBBPA may be more toxic than either BPA or TBBPA dimethyl ether."
"They detected a total of 21 chemicals in the house dust, including polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), hexabromocyclododecane (HBCDD) and tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA). They also detected 18 of the dust chemicals in the laundry wastewater. Chlorinated organophosphate flame retardants were present at the highest concentrations in both dust and laundry wastewater.
The researchers then took samples from two wastewater treatment plants, which discharge into the Colombia River, and analysed them for the same group of flame retardants. Flame retardant levels in the plants fit well with those predicted from lab data, and the researchers suggest that laundry wastewater may be a primary source of the chemicals to rivers."
Friday, September 26, 2014
- Consume foods with natural iodine regularly (each T4 needs 4 iodine atoms): Fish and shellfish, grass-fed cow’s milk and yogurt, and pasture-raised eggs. Iodized salt is not correctly balanced and not very helpful. Sea salt has a better balanced form of iodine and many more trace minerals. Seaweed flakes (Dulse flakes, Wakame, Kombu Kelp, Alaria, and Nori) are also a good source of iodine.
- Consume foods with natural selenium regularly: Brazil nuts, sunflower seeds, onions, fish, shellfish, mushrooms, turkey, chicken, grass-fed beef, pasture-raised eggs, and garlic. Our soil in Florida is selenium (and magnesium) deficient. Taking selenium with iodine helps prevent complications with hyperthyroidism.
- Iodine is a halide and is blocked by other halides. Reduce exposure to alternative halides like bromine found in baked goods, plastics, soft drinks and fruit drinks (Pepsi recently replaced its toxic brominated vegetable oil – BVO – with sucrose acetate isobutyrate in Gatorade, but left it in Mountain Dew), certain medications, pesticides, and fire retardants (carpets, mattresses, upholstery).
- Other blocking halides include fluorine and chlorine which are commonly found in drinking water, toothpaste, and some medications. Be cautious about over exposure.
- Open the windows on your car when you first get in, most of the inside parts are made with bromine and chlorine which leach out into the air in the hot sun.
- Reduce exposure to chlorinated and bromine-based pools and hot tubs.
- Be cautious about perchlorate exposure (rocket fuel), found in drinking water, vegetables and fruit (even organic ones), and milk. 97% of samples of breast milk were recently found to have perchlorates.
- Be cautious with too many goitrogens, which are foods that can interfere with thyroid function. Goitrogens include broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, kohlrabi, rutabaga, turnips, millet, spinach, strawberries, peaches, watercress, peanuts, radishes, and soybeans.
- Autoimmune thyroid disease may require additional measures to keep things under control.
Advanced Thyroid Issues:
- T4 is considered the storage form as it makes up 80% of the circulating thyroid hormones. T3 makes up the other 20% and is considered the active form. T3 is 300% more potent than T4 at the receptor level.
- The body can control the amount of T3 in circulation by shifting T3 to reverse T3 (to tone down the metabolic rate, for example with rapid weight loss or stress).
- Hashimoto’s is a situation where you are producing antibodies directed against the thyroid which render it inactive.
- Basal body temperature (temperature of your body at rest) is useful to check for thyroid problem. Normal temperatures are 97.8 to 98.2 F. If low, hypothyroidism is suspected. Women in their childbearing years will have a higher temperature in the second half of their menstruate cycle due to progesterone and so this test is less accurate.
- Humans usually have a ratio of T4 to T3 of 11 to 1. Thyroglobulin is a protein in the blood that usually binds T4 and T3.
- Armour Thyroid, Nature-Throid, and WP Thyroid (pig thyroid extract) have a T4 to T3 ratio of 4.22 to 1 (different from humans).
- Compounding of thyroid products to an exactly “tuned” dose and balance of T4 to T3 is possible.
- There is very little molecular difference between “synthetic” levothyroxine (L-thyroxine) and “natural” thyroxine, except that in glandular thyroxine it is bound. D-thyroxine (the mirror image of thyroxine) was previously on the market, but removed due to cardiac side-effects and is not in any of the thyroid products.
- Natural thyroid preparations (dessicated thyroid / thyroid glandular) also contain a small amount of T1, T2, and calcitonin. T1 and T2 are hormone precursors and byproducts of thyroid hormone synthesis. They do not act on the thyroid hormone receptor and are believed to be totally inert (inactive). However this is a controversial point.
- T3 replacement is best done through twice a day dosing due to a shorter half-life for T3 (as compared to T4) unless it is taken in a protein bound form.
- Herbs / supplements that mau support the thyroid include: Ashwagandha, B-complex, Guggul, L-Tyrosine, Magnesium, Manganese, Rhodiola, Selenium, Zinc.
- The molecular structure of gliadin, the protein portion of gluten, closely resembles that of the thyroid gland. When gliadin breaches the protective barrier of the gut, and enters the bloodstream, the immune system tags it for destruction. These antibodies to gliadin also cause the body to attack thyroid tissue. This means if you have autoimmune thyroid disease and you eat foods containing gluten, your immune system will attack your thyroid. This can last for 6 months or more after exposure to gluten.
High Fiber Diet
Infants Fed Soybean Formula
Excess Soybean in Adults
Proton Pump Inhibitors
Jejunum-ileal Bypass Surgery
Short Bowel Syndrome
Antiseizure medications (e.g., phenobarbital, phenytoin, carbamazepine, and rifampin)
Calorie restriction and fasting
Chronic alcohol intake
Free radical load
Insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus
Severe or systemic illness
Stress (and elevated cortisol levels)
Toxic metal exposure (cadmium, mercury, lead)
Nutritional issues (iodine, selenium, zinc, niacin, Vitamin B12, lipoic acid, Vit E, Vit C)
• Natural desiccated thyroid (porcine / pig)
• Inulin (from chicory root)
• Medium chain triglycerides
• Levothyroxine (aka T4)
• Colloidal Silicon Dioxide (from mined ore: natural desiccant to protect from moisture and humidity)
• Dicalcium Phosphate (from mined ore, holds tablet together)
• Lactose Monohydrate (traceable amount as part of desiccated thyroid powder USP)
• Magnesium Stearate (from a vegetable source like palm oil; lubricating agent for tablet compress)
• Microcrystalline Cellulose (synthetic fiber base to provide volume & bulk: also binds thyroid hormones, sadly)
• Croscarmellose Sodium (aids in disintegration in stomach and sadly, even more cellulose!)
• Stearic Acid (from vegetable source–typically palm oil; holds ingredients together)
• Opadry II 85F19316 Clear (contains polyvinyl alcohol USP, talc USP and polyethylene glycol NF)
• Porcine Thyroid Powder, U.S. Pharmacopeia (USP)
• Porcine Thyroid Powder, U.S. Pharmacopeia
• Dextrose, Anhydrous (anhydrous means any water has been removed and makes the tablet more stable)
• Microcrystalline Cellulose, NF
• Sodium Starch Glycolate, NF
• Calcium Stearate NF (stabilizer and lubricant)
• Opadry White (Titanium dioxide used as whitening agent, but also contains trace amounts of PEG (polyethylene glycol), Polysorbate 80, and Hydroxypropyl Methycellulose)
• Liothyronine (aka T3)
• Calcium sulfate
• Stearic acid
- 25 FD&C Yellow No. 6 Aluminum Lake
- 50 None
- 75 FD&C Red No. 40 Aluminum Lake, FD&C Blue No. 2 Aluminum Lake
- 88 FD&C Blue No. 1 Aluminum Lake, FD&C Yellow No. 6 Aluminum Lake, D&C Yellow No. 10 Aluminum Lake
- 100 D&C Yellow No. 10 Aluminum Lake, FD&C Yellow No. 6 Aluminum Lake
- 112 D&C Red No. 27 & 30 Aluminum Lake
- 125 FD&C Yellow No. 6 Aluminum Lake, FD&C Red No. 40 Aluminum Lake, FD&C Blue No. 1 Aluminum Lake
- 137 FD&C Blue No. 1 Aluminum Lake
- 150 FD&C Blue No. 2 Aluminum Lake
- 175 FD&C Blue No. 1 Aluminum Lake, D&C Red No. 27 & 30 Aluminum Lake
- 200 FD&C Red No. 40 Aluminum Lake
- 300 D&C Yellow No. 10 Aluminum Lake, FD&C Yellow No. 6 Aluminum Lake, FD&C Blue No. 1 Aluminum Lake
- Anesthetics (several agents for general anesthesia)
- Antacids: Prevacid
- Anti-axiety: Flurazepam, Halazepam, Hydroflumethaizide
- Antibiotics: Cipro, Tequin, Levaquin, Avelox, Linezolid
- Antidepressants: Celexa, Lexapro, Fluoxetine, Paroxetine, Fluvoxamine
- Antifungals: Diflucan, Flucytosine, Voriconazole
- Cholesterol: Lipitor, Zetia, Fluvastatin
- Anti-malarial: Mefloquine
- Chemo: Aprepitant, Fluoruracil
- Arthritis: Celebrex, Sulindac
- Psychotropic: Fluphenazine, Haloperidol, Trifluoperazine
- Steroids: Betamethosone, Clobetasol, Dexamethasone, Flunisolide, Fluocinolone, Fluticasone (Flonase)
Is it possible to get off thyroid medication?
Thursday, September 25, 2014
Breast cancer screening should involve shared-decision making (an active and in-depth conversation between physician and patient) with true informed consent about risks and benefits like many of the other cancer screening tests we have. Many women feel that a yearly mammogram is the only thing they have to do for breast cancer prevention. What makes this even easier is that radiology departments are sending letters directly to patients and independently ordering a yearly mammogram without allowing for any discussion with the physician. Unfortunately mammograms are not breast cancer "prevention", they are however helpful in breast cancer "detection". A self exam and clinical exam are important elements as well in early detection. Breast cancer "prevention" strategies should be emphasized more during the regular preventative visit with your physician. Dr. Tori Hudson has a very good discussion of the issue in her recent post.
"When speaking with patients, I let them know that there are 4 camps regarding screening mammography that differ greatly:
Camp 1 is the dominant school of thought held by organizations including ACOG, ACR, ACS, and Komen Foundation. They all recommend screening mammography yearly starting at age 40 and ending approximately mid-70s, although this is based on individual health and ability to withstand treatment regimens.
Camp 2 is held by the USPSTF, which is quite a bit different with screening mammography. This recommendation is not to start mammography screening in low-risk women until age 50, and then to do it every other year.
Camp 3 is a model common in many European countries: screening mammography every 3 years, some starting at age 40 and others at 50. There is no evidence that countries using this model have any higher rates of breast cancer mortality than countries that employ more frequent screening.
Camp 4. No screening at all in low-risk women, based on calculations from one of the leading U.S. researchers on analyzing screening mammography data. As mentioned earlier, his conclusions are that it would be necessary to screen 2,500 women every year for 10 years to avoid 1 death from breast cancer.
I also point out a few caveats to my patients. The first is that the current scientific data do not explain whether avoiding screening mammograms (and their potential for earlier detection) will result in exposing women to more aggressive treatments and the ensuing impacts on quality of life and adverse effects. The second is that breast cancer diagnosed in younger women, ages 40–49, tends to be more aggressive. So screening mammography in this age group might in fact be more important than screening mammography after age 50 or so.
After sharing all the above information, I feel that my patients are reasonably well informed and can make their own decisions, with my support.
Some readers might conclude that they won’t recommend screening mammography at all or may instead choose to recommend breast thermography. Before going the route of thermography, I recommend the excellent article by Walker and Kaczor: Breast Thermography: History, Theory, and Use. The recent research pointing to more serious questions about the benefits vs. harm of screening mammography in low risk women has not caused me to stop recommending screening mammography or to suggest thermography. Instead it has caused me to have an increased awareness that the mortality benefit is possibly modest and that my recommendations and my patients’ decisions may in fact be a close call with trade-offs of modest benefit and modest harm. This highlights the need for us to make individual recommendations based on known risk factors including obesity, more than 7 alcohol drinks per week, a first-degree relative with breast cancer history, BRCA mutations, and the slight increased risk incurred after estrogen with progestin (and not necessarily progesterone and not estrogen only) use for 3–4 years in postmenopausal women. As a point of clarification though, I would typically recommend annual screening for these higher-risk women 40 and older."
“Ingredient labeling on food products and non-alcoholic beverages is required by the Food and Drug Administration. But a whole other federal agency regulates beer, and not very well. The Department of Treasury – the same folks who collect your taxes – oversees alcoholic beverages. That probably explains why we know more about what’s in a can of Coke than a can of Bud. You can also thank the alcohol industry, which has lobbied for years against efforts to require ingredient labeling.”
"Ten years ago, while sitting in a hospital bed, Vani Hari made a decision that changed her life and the lives of many more.
Wednesday, September 24, 2014
"The evidence base supporting a link between persistent organic pollutant exposure and a wide spectrum of diseases continues to grow, particularly for cardiometabolic and neurological conditions. These lipophilic and stable substances include a range of substances, such as polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides, polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PDBEs), plastics, phthalates, polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs) and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDFs), many of which are widespread globally. ...
At least part of their toxicity appears to be mediated via epigenetic mechanisms, which now appear to be on par with genetic polymorphisms for clinical importance. Unlike genetic mutations, epigenetic modifications appear to be reversible with appropriate interventions. While much remains to be determined, avoidance of exposure seems highly indicated, as does nutritional support of relevant metabolic pathways, including glutathione synthesis and methylation, particularly during crucial periods of development."
"In this paper, we discuss natural therapies that can help regulate the immune system's aggressive behavior without suppressing or altering its necessary defenses. ...
The recent flu vaccine research in pigs raises a huge red flag calling into question the validity of this hypothesis, however. After giving piglets an H1N2 vaccine, they were then exposed to the H1N1 virus in circulation during 2009. As reported in the featured article:http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/09/10/universal-flu-vaccine.aspx
“Instead of being protected, the H1N2-vaccinated pigs developed more severe disease than exposed pigs that hadn’t been pre-vaccinated. When the researchers tested the blood of the vaccinated pigs, they found high levels of antibodies that attached to the stalk of the H1N1 hemagglutinin, but not to the head of the protein.Vincent said she and her colleagues are still trying to figure out why this produces more severe disease. But the theory is that while the stalk antibodies can’t neutralize or kill invading viruses, they do bind to them. And that may actually help the viruses enter the cells and multiply to higher levels—the paper calls them 'fusion enhancing.'”
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
"If the Americans like to eat GMO products, let them eat it then. We don't need to do that; we have enough space and opportunities to produce organic food," he said.
Where do you draw your line when you shop for groceries? Here is how Washington State and California State supporters in favor of GMO labeling drew their line (the initiative was defeated in 2013. The Grocery Manufacturers Association, rallied and mounted a $46 million campaign via Nestle SA, General Mills Inc., Coca-Cola Co and PepsiCo Inc).
Monday, September 22, 2014
Sweet peas (frozen)
Low-risk behavior included 5 factors:
2. moderate alcohol consumption (10 to 30 g/day), no smoking
3. being physically active (walking/bicycling ≥40 min/day and exercising ≥1 h/week)
4. having no abdominal adiposity (waist circumference <95 cm)
Sunday, September 21, 2014
Saturday, September 20, 2014
"I'm a registered pharmacist. I am having a difficult time with my job. I sell people drugs that are supposed to correct their various health complaints. Some medicines work like they're supposed to, but many don't. Some categories of drugs work better than others. My concern is that the outcomes of treatment I observe are so unpredictable that I would often call the entire treatment a failure in too many situations."
Friday, September 19, 2014
" A group of chemicals known as Pthalates have been found to increase the risk of cancer, diabetes, obesity. and now new research from Washington University, Missouri, indicates they may also cause early Menopause. Pthalates are found in plastics, cosmetics (including make-up and hairspray), household products and food packaging. Women exposed to higher levels have been found to have significant hormone fluctuations that cause the early onset of Menopause, an average of 2 1/2 years before other women."
"Psychiatry, as I said, has virtually abandoned psychotherapy, and along with that, isn't really focused on such things as lifestyle interventions. Psychiatry has succumbed to the siren song of 15 minute med check sessions, billing at the hour rate, so as to make more money like the surgeons. But that doesn't allow time to go over lifestyle interventions like eating, exercise, time in nature, social connection (or, compassionate service to others), and other lifestyle changes."
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
When 80% of the antibiotics in our country are used by the food industry, why are doctors being blamed for creating superbugs? Physicians and patients are comprehending the idea that antibiotics should be a last resort for typical infections. But is our food system?
Opt for organic foods and naturally raised animal products. Food allergies can be reversed with clean food and increasing microdose exposure.
Also, remember that an allergy medication is not a fix, it's a patch.
And, given rest and a healing environment, we have a very sophisticated system working for us. Saying you don't have time to get sick and opting for an antibiotic will often create future problems by disrupting our body's natural flora.
"Researchers now claim to have identified the first case in which a serious allergic reaction was traced to an antibiotic pesticide.5, 6 In this case, a 10-year old girl suffered a severe allergic reaction to blueberry pie.
The culprit turned out to be a streptomycin-containing pesticide that had been applied to the blueberries. According to lead author Dr. Anne Des Roches, this is "the first report that links an allergic reaction to fruits treated with antibiotic pesticides."