Dr. Bray Links

Monday, October 31, 2016

Why this physician stopped prescribing birth control

The sexual revolution, though it touted the mantra of women's liberation, sold us a lie in the form of a tiny pill. It promised women the experience of sex completely unburdened from its natural consequences. The falsehood of this claim has been demonstrated over and again by the epic dilemma of the many unplanned pregnancies which occur even while using birth control. What the revolution did establish was the belief that the responsibility for an unplanned pregnancy can be fully placed on a woman. A baby is no longer the result of sex but is due to her failure to use birth control correctly, nature be damned.

As it turns out the burden of fertility and the limits it required on a woman's sexual expression protected her from exploitation. The contraceptive age has allowed women to experience a new kind of sexual freedom, but this freedom has come at a price. Sex liberated from any links to fertility, quickly normalized the female body as a sex object. Without the constraints of a pregnancy, men were given free access to women's bodies as never before, and the industries of pornography and sex trafficking have exploded.

And despite all the new freedoms that women have been granted, there is no evidence to demonstrate that they are any more content with their sex lives or happier in general than in the past. Those who forgo sex until it can be had in a setting of intimacy and security that satisfies them are treated as if suffering from pathological sexual repression. While our teens are feeling pressure to have sex and experiencing sexual violence at ever diminishing ages.

The gains in sexual freedoms that contraceptives have allowed will never outweigh the damage done to womanhood, now divided and objectified.


Does the soda industry manipulate research on sugary drinks' health effects? - LA Times

One hundred percent.

That is the probability that a published study that finds no link between sugar-sweetened beverage consumption and poorer metabolic health was underwritten by the makers of sugar-sweetened beverages, or authored by researchers with financial ties to that industry.

Compare that figure with 2.9%. Among published studies that found that sugary beverage consumption is linked to higher rates of obesity and diabetes, fewer than 3% were underwritten by the sugar-sweetened beverage industry or authored by researchers who receive money from them.

That stark mismatch is revealed in an analysis of the last 15 years' worth of experimental research studies that explored the health effects of sugary soda consumption. The review, published Monday in the Annals of Internal Medicine, was conducted by a team of researchers at UC San Francisco.

The group's findings led them to an equally stark conclusion:

"This industry," they wrote, referring to companies that market sugar-sweetened beverages, "seems to be manipulating contemporary scientific processes to create controversy and advance their business interests at the expense of the public's health."


Mobile devices in the bedroom rob kids of sleep, study says

Dads and moms who are concerned about the quantity and quality of their children's sleep should keep mobile devices like phones, tablets and laptops out of kids' bedrooms, according to a new study published Monday in JAMA Pediatrics.

It's no surprise that using a mobile device before bedtime is associated with trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, as well as more daytime sleepiness. Most of us know that the light from tablets and phones can mess with circadian rhythms, making it harder for us and our kids to get a good night's sleep, for example.

But the authors also report that simply having access to a device in the bedroom — even if it is not used before bed — is associated with increased odds of poor sleep length and quality for kids.


Saturday, October 29, 2016

Carcinogen in Tap Water of More than 200 Million Americans | EWG

Potentially unsafe concentrations for two-thirds of Americans

Spurred by a groundbreaking 2010 EWG investigation that found chromium-6 in the tap water of 31 cities[6] and a Senate hearing prompted by the findings, the EPA ordered local water utilities to begin the first nationwide tests for the unregulated contaminant. From 2013 to 2015, utilities took more than 60,000 samples of drinking water and found chromium-6 in more than 75 percent of them.[7] EWG's analysis of the test data estimates that water supplies serving 218 million Americans – more than two-thirds of the population – contain more chromium-6 than the California scientists deemed safe.


Friday, October 28, 2016

Our Psoriasis Cure -- Food Is Medicine

One Families Journey To Wellness....Through Food.

The epidemiology of Parkinson's disease: risk factors and prevention

Since 2006, several longitudinal studies have assessed environmental or behavioural factors that seem to modify the risk of developing Parkinson's disease. Increased risk of Parkinson's disease has been associated with exposure to pesticides, consumption of dairy products, history of melanoma, and traumatic brain injury, whereas a reduced risk has been reported in association with smoking, caffeine consumption, higher serum urate concentrations, physical activity, and use of ibuprofen and other common medications. Randomised trials are investigating the possibility that some of the negative risk factors might be neuroprotective and thus beneficial in individuals with early Parkinson's disease, particularly with respect to smoking (nicotine), caffeine, and urate. In the future, it might be possible to identify Parkinson's disease in its prodromal phase and to promote neuroprotective interventions before the onset of motor symptoms. At this time, however, the only intervention that seems justifiable for the primary prevention of Parkinson's disease is the promotion of physical activity, which is likely to be beneficial for the prevention of several chronic diseases.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Natural compound reduces signs of aging in healthy mice | Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis

Much of human health hinges on how well the body manufactures and uses energy. For reasons that remain unclear, cells' ability to produce energy declines with age, prompting scientists to suspect that the steady loss of efficiency in the body's energy supply chain is a key driver of the aging process.

Now, scientists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have shown that supplementing healthy mice with a natural compound called NMN can compensate for this loss of energy production, reducing typical signs of aging such as gradual weight gain, loss of insulin sensitivity and declines in physical activity.

The study is published Oct. 27 in the journal Cell Metabolism.

"We have shown a way to slow the physiologic decline that we see in aging mice," said Shin-ichiro Imai, MD, PhD, a professor of developmental biology and of medicine. "This means older mice have metabolism and energy levels resembling that of younger mice. Since human cells rely on this same energy production process, we are hopeful this will translate into a method to help people remain healthier as they age."

Imai is working with researchers conducting a clinical trial to test the safety of NMN in healthy people. The phase 1 trial began earlier this year at Keio University School of Medicine in Tokyo.

With age, the body loses its capacity to make a key element of energy production called NAD (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide). Past work by Imai and co-senior author Jun Yoshino, MD, PhD, an assistant professor of medicine, has shown that NAD levels decrease in multiple tissues as mice age. Past research also has shown that NAD is not effective when given directly to mice so the researchers sought an indirect method to boost its levels. To do so, they only had to look one step earlier in the NAD supply chain to a compound called NMN (nicotinamide mononucleotide).

NMN can be given safely to mice and is found naturally in a number of foods, including broccoli, cabbage, cucumber, edamame and avocado. The new study shows that when NMN is dissolved in drinking water and given to mice, it appears in the bloodstream in less than three minutes. Importantly, the researchers also found that NMN in the blood is quickly converted to NAD in multiple tissues.

"We wanted to make sure that when we give NMN through drinking water, it actually goes into the blood circulation and into tissues," Imai said. "Our data show that NMN absorption happens very rapidly."

To determine the long-term effects of giving NMN, Imai, Yoshino and their colleagues studied three groups of healthy male mice fed regular mouse chow diets. Starting at five months of age, one group received a high dose of NMN-supplemented drinking water, another group received a low dose of the NMN drinking water, and a third group served as a control, receiving no NMN. The researchers compared multiple aspects of physiology between the groups, first at 5 months of age and then every three months, until the mice reached 17 months of age. Typical laboratory mice live about two years.


Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Symptoms Persist Despite Normalized TSH With Levothyroxine


Despite having normal blood levels of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), many patients treated for hypothyroidism with levothyroxine (L-T4) continue to have symptoms, including fatigue as well as a higher body mass index (BMI) and a greater likelihood of antidepressant and beta-blocker use, compared with healthy controls, according to new research.

"Patients have told us this for years — they complain of having a hard time losing weight and feeling sluggish and depressed," senior author Antonio C Bianco, MD, professor of medicine at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois, told Medscape Medical News.

"Now, for the first time, we have documentation that supports the patients' complaints, demonstrating that…[this] was not only in their minds, as some have suggested," said Dr Bianco.

Having Normal TSH Doesn't Necessarily Equate With Euthyroidism

The study, published this month in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism by lead author Sarah J Peterson, PhD, also of Rush University Medical Center, and colleagues, involved cross-sectional data from the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) from 2001 to 2012, including 9981 participants who had normal serum TSH, among whom 469 were being treated with L-T4.

In matching healthy controls with the L-T4 patients by age, sex, race, and serum TSH, the results showed those in the L-T4–treatment group had approximately 10% to 15% higher total and free thyroxine (T4) levels and about 5% to 10% lower serum and total triiodothyronine (T3) levels compared with the healthy controls (all P < .0001).

And the serum T3:T4 ratios in the L-T4–treated group were approximately 15% to 20% lower than in the healthy matched controls (P < .0001).

Also, compared with the healthy controls, those in the L-T4 group had major differences in seven of 21 objective parameters, including BMI (P < .001), total cholesterol (P < .01), HDL cholesterol (P = .02). and LDL cholesterol (P = .03); and in use of beta-blockers (P < .0001), statins, and antidepressants (both P < .01).

There were also major differences in five of 31 subjective parameters, including physical activity and nutrient intake: those taking L-T4 weighed approximately 10 pounds more than healthy controls of the same height, despite consuming fewer calories (P = .05), and they were significantly less physically active.

"While we recognize that these parameters are not specific markers of hypothyroidism and we cannot determine whether they were different between the groups prior to L-T4 treatment, this does not mitigate the fact that these data present a strong challenge to the dogma that having a normal serum TSH equates with euthyroidism in L-T4 treatment," the authors state.

They looked for factors that could lead to higher serum T3:T4 ratio; on multivariate analysis, only age and female sex were significantly inversely associated with the ratio (both P < .0001).

Furthermore, a direct association between calorie intake and T3:T4 ratio was observed only in L-T4–treated participants (P = .05). No other socioeconomic, biological or nutritional factor was found to affect the serum T3:T4 ratio.

T3 Levels Are Not Normal in Those Treated With Levothyroxine

Endocrinologists have long believed that serum T3 levels are normal in hypothyroid patients treated with levothyroxine, based on evidence that L-T4 monotherapy, in doses that normalize serum TSH, should effectively convert to T3 and maintain homeostasis.

But this study adds to mounting evidence countering that belief.

"Endocrinologists have accepted and propagated the notion that blood T3 levels are 'normal' in hypothyroid patients treated with levothyroxine," Dr Bianco noted.

Yet there are "are a handful of relatively recent studies indicating this is not the case," of which "ours is the most recent one, confirming that serum T3 is lower in these patients."

They note that animal models of primary hypothyroidism in fact suggest that L-T4 monotherapy is not sufficient to normalize systemic thyroid levels or other biological parameters that depend on thyroid hormones such as serum cholesterol.

Levothyroxine is currently the most commonly prescribed treatment for hypothyroidism and was in fact reported to be the single most commonly prescribed medication in the US in 2015.

Considering the widespread use, findings on persisting symptoms have important clinical implications, Dr Bianco stressed.

"Physicians should discuss this with their patients and explain the limitations of the levothyroxine therapy instead of saying that all will be back to normal.

"This is particularly important when patients suffer from other thyroid diseases and are considering treatment that involves total thyroidectomy or utilization of radioactive iodine, both of which will lead to hypothyroidism."


Saturday, October 22, 2016

Plant-Made Antimicrobial Peptide Targets Dental Plaque Biofilms

In the new study, Koo, Daniell and colleagues tried a new approach, combining the antimicrobial peptides with the matrix-degrading enzyme.

To address the prohibitive cost of antimicrobial peptide production, the researchers turned to Daniell's plant-based protein drug production platform. The process entails bombarding a plant leaf with gold particles coated in a cloned gene in order to reprogram the chloroplasts to synthesize the associated protein. In this case, the researchers coaxed plants to produce two different antimicrobial peptides, retrocyclin and protegrin. Both peptides have complex secondary structures, making them expensive to produce in the lab by traditional means. But the researchers found they could literally grow them in Daniell's greenhouse and faithfully replicate their unique secondary structures in the plant's leaves.

They then tested whether the plant-made agents could prevent creation of a biofilm. They exposed a saliva-coated tooth-like surface to the plant-made protegrin for 30 minutes, then exposed the surface to S. mutans cells along with sugar and found that it significantly impaired the ability of the bacterium to form a biofilm compared to an untreated surface.


Exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals in the USA: a population-based disease burden and cost analysis - The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology

The disease costs of EDCs were much higher in the USA than in Europe ($340 billion [2·33% of GDP] vs $217 billion [1·28%]). The difference was driven mainly by intelligence quotient (IQ) points loss and intellectual disability due to polybrominated diphenyl ethers (11 million IQ points lost and 43 000 cases costing $266 billion in the USA vs 873 000 IQ points lost and 3290 cases costing $12·6 billion in the European Union). Accounting for probability of causation, in the European Union, organophosphate pesticides were the largest contributor to costs associated with EDC exposure ($121 billion), whereas in the USA costs due to pesticides were much lower ($42 billion).

EDC exposure in the USA contributes to disease and dysfunction, with annual costs taking up more than 2% of the GDP. Differences from the European Union suggest the need for improved screening for chemical disruption to endocrine systems and proactive prevention.


Evaluation of the potential health risks of substances migrating from polycarbonate replacement baby bottles

Since the European Commission prohibited the use of bisphenol A in the production of polycarbonate (PC) baby bottles, many other materials have replaced PC for the manufacture of this type of food contact materials. In the present study, the potential migration risks associated with these alternative materials were investigated. First, all substances were evaluated for endocrine disruptive (ED) activity by using different existing lists of (suspected) ED chemicals. Next, the potential non-ED risks were assessed. A distinction was made between migrants listed in Annex I of European Regulation 10/2011 and the unlisted substances (e.g. non-intentionally added substances). For the listed substances, concentrations in the migration solutions were compared to their respective specific migration limits (SML) (when applicable). Migration of all substances was shown to be below their SML. The unlisted substances were evaluated using toxicological information from previous evaluations, or if not available, by applying the Threshold of Toxicological Concern (TTC) approach. In case the estimated exposure to the unlisted substance exceeded the human exposure TTC value, a more indepth risk assessment was performed. Based on the results of both parts of the study, four baby bottles were considered of high concern because of the potential toxicity of migrating compounds.


Does Food Combining Work? Fact or Fiction

The laws of food combining can vary somewhat depending on the source, but the most common rules include the following:

    Only eat fruit on an empty stomach, especially melons.
    Don't combine starches and proteins.
    Don't combine starches with acidic foods.
    Don't combine different types of protein.
    Only consume dairy products on an empty stomach, especially milk.

Other rules include that protein should not be mixed with fat, sugar should only be eaten alone, and fruits and vegetables should be eaten separately.


Friday, October 21, 2016

4 Reasons Why Some People Do Well as Vegans (While Others Fail)

So, what can we conclude from all this? When the right genetic (and microbial) elements are in place, vegan diets — supplemented with the requisite vitamin B12 —have a greater chance of meeting a person's nutritional needs. But when issues with vitamin A conversion, gut microbiome makeup, amylase levels or choline requirements enter the picture, the odds of thriving as a vegan start to plummet.

This isn't to say there aren't vegans who really did "do it wrong" (case in point, a diet of potato chips and Pepsi qualifies as vegan), who used their diet to mask an eating disorder or who faced other circumstances that doomed their success from the start.

But science is increasingly supporting the idea that individual variation drives the human response to different diets. Some people are simply better equipped to glean what they need from plant foods — or produce what they need with the fabulous mechanics of the human body.


Two diet drinks a day could double the risk of diabetes, study finds

Two fizzy drinks a day could double the risk of diabetes - even if they are diet versions - a Swedish study has found.

Research by the Karolinska Institute on 2,800 adults found that those who consumed at least two 200ml servings of soft drinks daily were 2.4 times as likely to suffer from a form of type 2 diabetes.

Many fizzy drinks are sold in 330ml cans, meaning that one and a half cans would be enough to double the risk.

Those who drank a litre of such drinks saw a 10-fold rise in their chance of suffering from the condition.

The increased risks were the same regardless of whether the drinks were sugary or artificially sweetened, the research published in the European Journal of Endocrinology found.


Top military doctor says trend toward overweight troops is troubling

Recent military health data shows that about 7.8 percent of the force -- or about one in every 13 troops -- is clinically overweight, defined by a body mass index greater than 25.

That figure has roughly doubled during the past five years and is up fourfold since 2001, when about 1.6 percent of troops were diagnosed as clinically overweight.

Top Pentagon officials are rewriting the forcewide guidelines for body composition standards and the methods for officially evaluating it. For individual troops, a diagnosis of obesity can stall a career or lead to involuntary separation, making these policies are central to military life.

Some Pentagon officials worry that overweight troops pose a threat to combat readiness because they may not be able to move as quickly in ground combat and if they are wounded, it is more difficult for their buddies to pull them to safety.


Bayer won't fight EPA ban on pesticide

Bayer CropScience will give up its fight with federal regulators over their ban of a pesticide commonly used on almonds, alfalfa, tomatoes and other California crops.

The company said in a statement Wednesday that it was too risky to take its case to a federal appeals court or to reapply for approval of the chemical, flubendiamide, marketed by Bayer under the brand name Belt and by Nichino America as Tourismo and Vetica.

The companies have stopped selling those products, although stockpiles they already shipped can be sold and used, according to a recent decision by an appeals panel of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Pressing the fight might have allowed Bayer to renew its scientific claims that the chemical poses no serous threat to freshwater animals, such as snails, worms, and mussels, but "that opportunity was far from certain," said Charlotte Sanson, Bayer's director of registrations.


Zelnate Official Site: Bovine Respiratory Disease Management

Your beef and milk are antibiotic free, but is it Zelnate free?

ZELNATE™ is a bacterial-produced plasmid DNA with a liposome carrier that stimulates the innate immune system in cattle. The innate immune system has been shown to provide a potent, rapid, nonspecific, protective response to infectious agents, such as those that can lead to Bovine Respiratory Disease (BRD). BRD is a serious condition that commonly causes lung lesions, reduced lung capacity and mortality.


Priorin for hair growth

Millet Extract

PRIORIN® capsules contain millet extract, a source of the phytosterol miliacin, which increases proliferation and metabolic activity in human keratinocytes (key cells in hair).*
Calcium Pantothenate

The essential vitamin calcium pantothenate stimulates metabolic activity in human keratinocytes (key cells in hair) and is thus important in the nutritional support of normal hair growth and quality.*

The amino acid L-cystine is a building block of the hair substance keratin and thus an important component of the hair.*

Biotin is a vitamin that is vital for the synthesis of the hair substance keratin.*


Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Pyrroloquinoline quinone

Damage from a heart attack, like a stroke, is inflicted via ischemic reperfusion injury. PQQ administration reduces the size of damaged areas in animal models of acute heart attack (myocardial infarction). Significantly, this occurs irrespective of whether the chemical is given before or after the ischemic event itself, suggesting that administration within the first hours of medical response may offer benefits to heart attack victims.[8]

Researchers at the University of California at San Francisco investigated this potential, comparing PQQ with the beta blocker metoprolol—a standard post-MI clinical treatment. Independently, both treatments reduced the size of the damaged areas and protected against heart muscle dysfunction. When given together, the left ventricle's pumping pressure was enhanced. The combination of PQQ with metoprolol also increased mitochondrial energy-producing functions—but the effect was modest compared with PQQ alone. Only PQQ favorably reduced lipid peroxidation. These results led the researchers to conclude that "PQQ is superior to metoprolol in protecting mitochondria from ischemia/reperfusion oxidative damage." [9]


Hypermethylation: Are We Overdoing It with Methylation Support?

Many functional medicine practitioners now routinely assess patients' MTHFR status, with particular interest in identifying the C677T or A1298C alleles that can impair enzyme function to the detriment of folate utilization.

Homocysteine, which typically rises when there is a methylation blockage, is another biomarker for methylation status that practitioners commonly measure.

Up until now, it has been widespread practice to recommend supplementation with methylated folate (5-methyltetrahydrofolate) and methylcobalamin (vitamin B12) for patients with methylation deficiencies.

Since 5-mTHF is the normal product of the MTHFR enzyme, supplementing with this form makes sense because it bypasses any enzyme blockage.

Folic acid, the synthetic folate form which has been successful at reducing rates of neural tube defects, is not generally used for methylation support since it would require conversion by the deficient MTHFR enzyme, as well as activation via the enzyme dihydrofolate reductase, which is a somewhat inefficient process, especially if there are any single nucleotide polymorphisms in the DFR gene.

A number of combination supplements geared towards methylation support also include other accessory cofactors such as pyridoxine (vitamin B6), betaine and zinc.

While the increased awareness of the importance of methylation is certainly a positive development, there are a number of potential concerns with methylation support supplements, especially when taken at high doses for indefinite time periods.


Lead Astray: Environmental Toxins Threaten Community Health Nationwide

A key biomarker of lead exposure is the blockade of the enzyme ALAD (delta-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase). When ALAD is blocked, its substrate ALA (aminolevulinic acid) builds up, and causes the reduction of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) in the central nervous system.

Lead also inhibits the formation of vitamin D, which plays a key role in calcium metabolism. Thus, calcium homeostasis is significantly altered by lead. This interferes with calcium-dependent signal transduction processes and may alter the most basic nervous system functions.


Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Pyrroloquinoline Quixote PQQ

Researchers at the University of California at San Francisco investigated this potential, comparing PQQ with the beta blocker metoprolol—a standard post-MI clinical treatment. Independently, both treatments reduced the size of the damaged areas and protected against heart muscle dysfunction. When given together, the left ventricle's pumping pressure was enhanced. The combination of PQQ with metoprolol also increased mitochondrial energy-producing functions—but the effect was modest compared with PQQ alone. Only PQQ favorably reduced lipid peroxidation. These results led the researchers to conclude that "PQQ is superior to metoprolol in protecting mitochondria from ischemia/reperfusion oxidative damage." [9]


Simple Measures to Reduce Chemical Exposure | Endocrinology | JAMA Internal Medicine

Possible health consequences related to chemical exposure through common items, such as plastic, fruits, and furniture, are receiving increased attention. In the current Evidence to Practice article, Gore1 summarizes the evidence supporting the Endocrine Society's Scientific Statement on endocrine-disrupting chemicals, such as polychlorinated biphenyls; dioxins; pesticides, plastics, and plasticizers (bisphenol A [BPA] and phthalates); perfluorinated compounds; and flame retardants.2 The Statement considered basic, translational, and clinical evidence examining chemical exposure and the development of various diseases and concludes that exposure to chemicals are strongly associated with, and may be causative of, endocrine diseases.


Oral AGE restriction ameliorates insulin resistance in obese individuals with the metabolic syndrome: a randomised controlled trial | SpringerLink


Sixty-one individuals were randomised to a Reg-AGE diet and 77 to an L-AGE diet; the data of 49 and 51, respectively, were analysed at the study end in 2014. The L-AGE diet markedly improved insulin resistance; modestly decreased body weight; lowered AGEs, oxidative stress and inflammation; and enhanced the protective factors sirtuin 1, AGE receptor 1 and glyoxalase I. The Reg-AGE diet raised AGEs and markers of insulin resistance, oxidative stress and inflammation. There were no effects on MRI-assessed measurements. No side effects from the intervention were identified. HOMA-IR came down from 3.1 ± 1.8 to 1.9 ± 1.3 (p < 0.001) in the L-AGE group, while it increased from 2.9 ± 1.2 to 3.6 ± 1.7 (p < 0.002) in the Reg-AGE group.

L-AGE ameliorates insulin resistance in obese people with the metabolic syndrome, and may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, without necessitating a major reduction in adiposity. Elevated serum AGEs may be used to diagnose and treat 'at-risk' obesity.


Non-targeted metabolomics combined with genetic analyses identifies bile acid synthesis and phospholipid metabolism as being associated with incident type 2 diabetes | SpringerLink


Out of 5961 investigated metabolic features, 1120 were associated with prevalent type 2 diabetes and IFG and 70 were annotated to metabolites and replicated in the three cohorts. Fifteen metabolites were associated with incident type 2 diabetes in the four cohorts combined (358 events) following adjustment for age, sex, BMI, waist circumference and fasting glucose. Novel findings included associations of higher values of the bile acid deoxycholic acid and monoacylglyceride 18:2 and lower concentrations of cortisol with type 2 diabetes risk. However, adding metabolites to an existing risk score improved model fit only marginally. A genetic variant within the CYP7A1 locus, encoding the rate-limiting enzyme in bile acid synthesis, was found to be associated with lower concentrations of deoxycholic acid, higher concentrations of LDL-cholesterol and lower type 2 diabetes risk. Variants in or near SGPP1, GCKR and FADS1/2 were associated with diabetes-associated phospholipids and type 2 diabetes.

We found evidence that the metabolism of bile acids and phospholipids shares some common genetic origin with type 2 diabetes.


Metabolic signatures and risk of type 2 diabetes in a Chinese population: an untargeted metabolomics study using both LC-MS and GC-MS | SpringerLink

A total of 51 differential metabolites were identified between cases and controls. Of these, 35 were significantly associated with diabetes risk in the multivariate analysis after false discovery rate adjustment, such as increased branched-chain amino acids (leucine, isoleucine and valine), non-esterified fatty acids (palmitic acid, stearic acid, oleic acid and linoleic acid) and lysophosphatidylinositol (LPI) species (16:1, 18:1, 18:2, 20:3, 20:4 and 22:6). A combination of six metabolites including proline, glycerol, aminomalonic acid, LPI (16:1), 3-carboxy-4-methyl-5-propyl-2-furanpropionic acid and urea showed the potential to predict type 2 diabetes in at-risk individuals with high baseline HbA1c levels (≥6.5% [47.5 mmol/mol]) with an AUC of 0.935. Combined lysophosphatidylglycerol (LPG) (12:0) and LPI (16:1) also showed the potential to predict type 2 diabetes in individuals with normal baseline HbA1c levels (<6.5% [47.5 mmol/mol]; AUC = 0.781).

Our findings show that branched-chain amino acids and NEFA are potent predictors of diabetes development in Chinese adults. Our results also indicate the potential of lysophospholipids for predicting diabetes.


Physical activity and incident type 2 diabetes mellitus: a systematic review and dose–response meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies

Higher levels of LTPA were associated with substantially lower incidence of type 2 diabetes in the general population. The relationship between LTPA and type 2 diabetes was curvilinear; the greatest relative benefits are achieved at low levels of activity, but additional benefits can be realised at exposures considerably higher than those prescribed by public health recommendations.


Combatting type 2 diabetes by turning up the heat

In our westernised society, the level of physical activity is low. Interventions that increase energy expenditure are generally associated with an improvement in metabolic health. Exercise and exercise training increase energy metabolism and are considered to be among the best strategies for prevention of type 2 diabetes mellitus. More recently, cold exposure has been suggested to have a therapeutic value in type 2 diabetes. At a cellular level, there is evidence that increasing the turnover of cellular substrates such as fatty acids is associated with preventive effects against lipid-induced insulin resistance. Cellular energy sensors may underlie the effects linking energy turnover with metabolic health effects. Here we review data supporting the hypothesis that increasing energy and substrate turnover has beneficial effects on insulin sensitivity and should be considered a target for the prevention and treatment of type 2 diabetes.


Breast-Cancer Tumor Size, Overdiagnosis, and Mammography Screening Effectiveness — NEJM

Although the rate of detection of large tumors fell after the introduction of screening mammography, the more favorable size distribution was primarily the result of the additional detection of small tumors. Women were more likely to have breast cancer that was overdiagnosed than to have earlier detection of a tumor that was destined to become large. The reduction in breast cancer mortality after the implementation of screening mammography was predominantly the result of improved systemic therapy.


Is Your Protein Shake Safe?

Protein shakes, powders, and supplements are incredibly popular with the health conscious crowd. Considering what typical protein shakes promise – sleek muscles, weight loss and a quick, easy “healthy” meal replacement – it’s logical to see why, but is your protein shake safe? Unfortunately, the food industry is making an absolute killing (maybe literally) selling ones that are filled with highly processed denatured proteins, chemicals, preservatives and other additives. There’s one thing in common for all of them – they are all processed and deciding on whether or not they are actually real food comes into question. Now not all processed things we put in our body are technically bad for us – but understanding what exactly is in your protein shake is critical to deciding whether to consume it, select an alternative, or discontinue use all together.


Saturday, October 15, 2016

How Tiny Are Benefits From Many Tests And Pills? Researchers Paint A Picture | Kaiser Health News

Their "benefit-risk characterization theater" images vividly show the odds, based on solid research. There's a sold-out house of 1,000 playgoers or concertgoers, all getting a particular kind of exam, screen or pill.

Then the curtain falls. Everybody helped by the procedure or prescription gets up and leaves. Often it's only a few people. Sometimes very few. Or nobody.

For breast exams, only one woman in the thousand-person theater receiving mammograms over a lifetime is saved from dying by detecting a cancer before it spreads, according to Lazris' and Rifkin's summary of the research.

At the same time, hundreds of women in that audience will receive test results suggesting they have cancer when they don't — "false positives." Sixty-four get biopsies, which generally involve cells withdrawn through a needle, for nonthreatening lumps.

Ten receive unnecessary treatment including radiation and surgery for lumps that never would have caused a problem.


Nonhormonal Management of Vasomotor Symptoms of Menopause

Clinicians need to be well informed about the level of evidence available for the wide array of nonhormonal management options currently available to midlife women to help prevent underuse of effective therapies or use of inappropriate or ineffective therapies. Recommended: Cognitive-behavioral therapy and, to a lesser extent, clinical hypnosis have been shown to be effective in reducing VMS. Paroxetine salt is the only nonhormonal medication approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for the management of VMS, although other selective serotonin reuptake/norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, gabapentinoids, and clonidine show evidence of efficacy. Recommend with caution: Some therapies that may be beneficial for alleviating VMS are weight loss, mindfulness-based stress reduction, the S-equol derivatives of soy isoflavones, and stellate ganglion block, but additional studies of these therapies are warranted. Do not recommend at this time: There are negative, insufficient, or inconclusive data suggesting the following should not be recommended as proven therapies for managing VMS: cooling techniques, avoidance of triggers, exercise, yoga, paced respiration, relaxation, over-the-counter supplements and herbal therapies, acupuncture, calibration of neural oscillations, and chiropractic interventions. Incorporating the available evidence into clinical practice will help ensure that women receive evidence-based recommendations along with appropriate cautions for appropriate and timely management of VMS.


SSRIs Disrupt Sleep in the Elderly, May Contribute to Dementia

Antidepressants, especially selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), can significantly disrupt sleep architecture in elderly patients and may contribute to early signs of neurodegeneration that can progress to dementia, new research shows.

"We take into account other side effects of antidepressants, including weight gain and sexual side effects, but we are less concerned about sleep, especially when we use the SSRIs," Muhammad Tahir, MD, psychiatry resident, SUNY Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, New York, told Medscape Medical News.

"But the SSRIs increase sleep latency in the elderly and decrease REM [rapid eye movement] sleep duration and are also associated with REM sleep behavioral disorders, including nightmares," he added.


Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Breast Cancer Overdiagnosis: A New Estimate in NEJM

The overdiagnosis of breast cancer via mammography screening is "larger than is generally recognized," conclude the authors of a new analysis published online October 12 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

An overdiagnosis of breast cancer refers to a tumor detected on screening that "never would have led to clinical symptoms," explain the investigators, led by H. Gilbert Welch, MD, professor of medicine at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice in Lebanon, New Hampshire.

"I think the main message [of the study] is that screening has both benefits and harms. There is no single 'right answer' ― values matter. Screening is a choice, not a public health imperative," Dr Welch told Medscape Medical News.

Overdiagnosis is considered one of the harms of screening, but it is not easily evaluated using clinical trial data because of the need for long-term patient follow-up, the study authors say.


Morning Report: Yoga & Pain

And finally, it seems that yoga may be just as good, if not better, than physical therapy (PT) for relief from back pain.

The study included over 300 low-income patients experiencing chronic back pain with no obvious cause, like spinal stenosis. Patients were randomly assigned to PT, yoga, or education and were followed for 1 year. The researchers found that for some patients, quality yoga was superior to PT in relieving back pain, especially among those who were more dedicated to practicing it.

Another benefit was seen in pain medication use. At the beginning of the study, almost 75% of the participants were taking pain medications, with about 20% using opioids. After 12 weeks, 20% of both the yoga and the PT groups had reduced their usage of pain meds.

This is also good news from a cost perspective. Quality yoga instruction is often less expensive than physical therapy. And in general, yoga is good for the brain, and practicing it may help with pain tolerance.


Morning Report: Statin Use

Obtaining coronary artery calcium scores can prove valuable in determining which of your patients might benefit from statins and which won't. This German study included 3745 individuals without known heart disease and who were not on lipid-lowering meds. Researchers calculated both their cardiac risk scores using current algorithms and the coronary artery calcium scores from cardiac CT.

During the 10-year follow-up period, patients with baseline coronary artery calcium scores of 400 or higher had a cardiac event rate of 12.6%. But when baseline scores were less than 100, the chance of a cardiac event decreased to just over 3%.

This means that you may be able to better risk-stratify those patients who qualify for a statin per guidelines but who have a low coronary artery calcium score—especially those with a zero score. They may not need a statin after all.


Monday, October 10, 2016

Coke, Pepsi provide sponsorship money to ACC, AHA and 94 other health organizations | Cardiovascular Business

Between 2011 and 2015, 96 national health organizations accepted money from the Coca-Cola Company, PepsiCo or both companies, according to an internet and database analysis.

The American College of Cardiology (ACC), American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, National Institutes for Health and American Medical Association were among the organizations that the Coca-Cola Company and PepsiCo sponsored during that time period.

The Coca-Cola Company sponsored 95 national health organizations, while PepsiCo sponsored 13.

At the end of 2015, the ACC, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, American Academy of Pediatrics and American Academy of Family Physicians did not renew their contracts with Coca-Cola.

Researchers Daniel G. Aaron, BS, and Michael B. Siegel, MD, MPH, published their findings online Oct. 10 in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.


Sunday, October 9, 2016

Healthcare Divide: East Gainesville Residents Struggle To Find Accessible Healthcare

Ralph Rutledge had four tumors on his vocal cords. Lung cancer. As a regular patient, he spent close to six hours a week on a bus. Two connecting routes – three times a week – from east Gainesville to his doctors at UF Health Shands, he said.

“It took longer than I wanted it to,” the 61-year-old scoffed, pressing an artificial stoma, an indent of pink flesh at the bottom of his neck, to talk. His doctors removed his vocal cords.

Rutledge, a 40-year resident of Gainesville who doesn’t own a car, said he now only goes to the doctor once a year. The biggest problem living on the east side is “medical, getting back and forth to the doctors,” he said.

While UF Health Shands officially opened its new emergency center in west Gainesville last weekend, the facility has left some residents questioning the availability of services on the east side of town.  The Kanapaha emergency room would mark the second on Archer Road and the third to be built in west Gainesville.

For people who live on the east side, there is one non-emergency medical center on Waldo Road, a health department and a clinic on Main Street. They all close at 5 p.m.

Another alternative, Equal Access Clinic, is open to east side residents from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., twice a week, to help alleviate the need for primary care.

UF Health Shands officials say data shows that primary, or preventative, care is what’s critical for the east side, not emergency care. But those on the east say they need more.


Medicines and Vegetable Oils as Hidden Causes of Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes

Pharmacology. 2016;98(3-4):134-70. doi: 10.1159/000446704. Epub 2016 Jun 2.

Statins are Mitochondrion-Toxic and Cytotoxic

Statins inhibit HMG-CoA reductase to lower the levels of prenyl intermediates in cholesterol biosynthesis as well as lower blood cholesterol levels. Coenzyme Q 10  and heme A derived from prenyl intermediates are essential components of the mitochondrial electron transport chain, and thus statins inhibit the generation of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) that serves as an energy source for cellular activities. ATP depletion is the major cause of atherosclerosis progression under ischemic conditions ( fig. 2 ). Under diabetic conditions, glucose is not utilized efficiently as an energy source and hydrophilic ketone bodies, synthesized from fatty acids partly in mitochondria, are transported to the tissues and utilized as an energy source. Statins inhibit ketone body synthesis  [4] .

Mitochondrial membranes are relatively rich in cholesterol, and a decrease in cholesterol content caused by statins is likely to alter mitochondrial integrity. In the case of steroidogenic cells, steroidal hormone synthesis in mitochondria is inhibited, as will be explained later (Section IV-3). Thus, statins are mitochondrion-toxic in all tissues, accelerating atherosclerosis and exacerbating diabetic conditions.

Placing Emphasis on Human Health by Overcoming the Pressures of Current Industrial and Socioeconomic Structures

Rapeseed, soybean and corn have been used as feed materials for stock raising and poultry farming because of their good amino acid scores, energy content and apparent (short-term) safety. Oils are extracted from these grains to produce meal for cattle, while vegetable oils rich in linoleic acid have been extracted for human use. In every country every year, the amounts of different vegetable oils produced need to be consumed in order to be economical. Keys’ equation allowed industry to convince consumers that linoleic-rich vegetable oils were good for their health. Even after Keys’ equation was found not to be applicable for the prevention of chronic diseases, and excessive intake of linoleic acids was found to increase cancer, CVD and all-cause mortality, certain countries exporting these grains would not accept the risks associated with linoleic-rich vegetable oils.

In the health food sector in Japan, more than 10 kinds of food were claimed to be effective in lowering plasma cholesterol, and their labeling as ‘Food for Special Dietary Use’ was approved by the Consumer Affairs Agency of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. On television, information on these foods appears hourly and full-page advertisements are often seen in major newspapers, successfully convincing the majority of people to accept the discredited hypothesis that a high cholesterol level is bad for the health and linoleic-rich vegetable oils are good. Needless to say, statins are a huge financial interest to the pharmaceutical industry.

In this era, when big industry exerts enormous influence over the media, and nutritional and treatment guidelines are issued by professional societies in favor of industry, we seem to have largely lost our way in the promotion of human health. However, despite the pressures from current industrial and socioeconomic structures, many scientists in medical and nutritional fields working in evidence-based research have begun to raise their voices and we join them in unison because the impact of increasing the intake of some vegetable oils on human nutrition seems to be much more severe than what we previously thought.


Friday, October 7, 2016

Tick bites that trigger severe meat allergy on rise around the world | Society | The Guardian

People living in tick-endemic areas around the world are being warned of an increasingly prevalent, potentially life-threatening side effect to being bitten: developing a severe allergy to meat.

The link between tick bites and meat allergies was first described in 2007, and has since been confirmed around the world.

Sufferers of "tick-induced mammalian meat allergy" will experience a delayed reaction of between two and 10 hours after eating red meat. Almost invariably, they are found to have been bitten by a tick – sometimes as much as six months before.

Although most cases of tick bites of humans are uneventful, some immune systems are sensitive to proteins in the parasite's saliva and become intolerant of red meat and, in some cases, derivatives such as dairy and gelatine.

Poultry and seafood can be tolerated, but many sufferers choose to avoid meat entirely.

Cases of the emergent allergy have been reported in Europe, Asia, Central America and Africa, but it is most prevalent – and on the rise – in parts of Australia and the United States where ticks are endemic and host populations are booming.


Monday, October 3, 2016

Is Your Probiotic Pill Worthless? A Simple Test To Find Out At Home! - Food Babe

Here's some news: your probiotic pill is probably not doing anything for you.

I know that's a bold statement but it's true.


First, probiotic pills are under regulated – meaning no one is really making sure that what you see is actually what you get. I will explain more below.

Secondly, the studies supporting probiotics are weak. For all intents and purposes a probiotic study just has to show that its strain of probiotic comes out in the stool after you ingest it. Does that mean it did anything for you while it was traveling down your intestines? No.

Lastly, food based probiotics (fermented foods etc) seem to be a more potent and effective way to reseed the gut. In other words, why use pills when there are countless, delicious fermented food options out there?

But listen – if you are going to take probiotics then I recommend some that are MUCH better than others.


The Full-Fat Paradox: Dairy Fat Linked To Lower Diabetes Risk : The Salt : NPR

If you melt at the creaminess of full-fat yogurt, read on.

A new study finds the dairy fats found in milk, yogurt and cheese may help protect against Type 2 diabetes.

The research, published in the journal Circulation, included 3,333 adults. Beginning in the late 1980s, researchers took blood samples from the participants and measured circulating levels of biomarkers of dairy fat in their blood. Then, over the next two decades, the researchers tracked who among the participants developed diabetes.

"People who had the most dairy fat in their diet had about a 50 percent lower risk of diabetes" compared with people who consumed the least dairy fat, says Dariush Mozaffarian, dean of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, who is also an author of the study.


Treatment raises 'real possibility' of curing HIV | Fox News

The first results of a study out of the UK are raising the tantalizing possibility that researchers have figured not just how to treat HIV but how to actually cure it.

The first of 50 patients to undergo the experimental therapy, a 44-year-old British social worker, has no detectable traces of the virus in his blood, reports the Sunday Times.

The team of scientists from the UK's leading universities say it's way too early to claim success, but they're clearly optimistic. "We are exploring the real possibility of curing HIV," says Mark Samuels of the National Institute for Health Research Office for Clinical Research Infrastructure. "This is a huge challenge and it's still early days but the progress has been remarkable."

The treatment is kind of a one-two punch, explains Medical Daily. First, it uses standard antiretroviral drugs, the type used by today's HIV patients to keep the virus from reproducing and thus remain in check. But, crucially, it then does something those ART drugs cannot do—it eliminates dormant cells that lie in hiding. (Those dormant cells are the reason HIV treatment is currently a lifelong prospect.)


Causes, Symptoms & Natural Treatment For Menopause | Dr. Murray

What dietary factors are important in Menopause?

The key dietary recommendation to relieve menopausal symptoms is to increase the amount of plant foods, especially those high in phytoestrogens, while reducing the amount of animal foods in the diet. Phytoestrogens are plant compounds that are capable of binding to estrogen receptors and can replace some of the effect of estrogen that is no longer being made. Foods high in phytoestrogens include soy beans and soy foods, flaxseeds, nuts, whole grains, apples, fennel, celery, parsley, and alfalfa. A high intake of phytoestrogens is thought to explain why hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms rarely occur in cultures in which people consume a predominantly plant-based diet. Increasing the intake of dietary phytoestrogens helps decrease hot flashes, increase maturation of vaginal cells, and inhibit osteoporosis. In addition, a diet rich in phytoestrogens results in a decreased frequency of breast, colon, and prostate cancers. Furthermore, it is important is to increase the consumption of soy foods. Clinical studies have shown eating soy foods (the equivalent of 2/3 cups of soybeans daily) to be effective in relieving hot flashes and vaginal atrophy.

Cabbage family foods, including broccoli, Brussels' sprouts, cabbages, collards, kale, and mustard and turnip greens, are good food choice for women going through menopause. Not only for their ability to protect against breast cancer and heart disease, but also because of their high content of nutrients that are supportive of bone health such as calcium, magnesium, and folic acid.


New Study Links Acetaminophen Use to ADHD

Another damning study indicates it is simply time to pull the plug on this outdated drug. The study just published in JAMA Pediatrics once again indicated that women who take acetaminophen during pregnancy are more likely to have a child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The researchers also found that prenatal exposure to the medication was associated with a higher risk of having children who exhibit other emotional or behavioral symptoms.

Recent detailed analysis of clinical studies on acetaminophen (Tylenol) have concluded that this popular drug was ineffective for low back pain and provided no significant clinical relief of hip or knee osteoarthritis (OA) pain, while quadrupling the risk for liver damage.

All together, the results from all of these analyses further calls into question whether this drug should still be on the over-the-counter market or at all.


Glycemic Control for Patients With Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: Our Evolving Faith in the Face of Evidence. - PubMed - NCBI


We sought to determine the concordance between the accumulating evidence about the impact of tight versus less tight glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus since the publication of UKPDS (UK Prospective Diabetes Study) in 1998 until 2015 with the views about that evidence published in journal articles and practice guidelines.

We searched in top general medicine and specialty journals for articles referring to glycemic control appearing between 2006 and 2015 and identified the latest practice guidelines. To summarize the evidence, we included all published systematic reviews and meta-analyses of contemporary randomized trials of glycemic control measuring patient-important microvascular and macrovascular outcomes, and completed a meta-analysis of their follow-up extensions. We identified 16 guidelines and 328 statements. The body of evidence produced estimates warranting moderate confidence. This evidence reported no significant impact of tight glycemic control on the risk of dialysis/transplantation/renal death, blindness, or neuropathy. In the past decade, however, most published statements (77%-100%) and guidelines (95%) unequivocally endorsed benefit. There is also no significant effect on all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality, or stroke; however, there is a consistent 15% relative-risk reduction of nonfatal myocardial infarction. Between 2006 and 2008, most statements (47%-83%) endorsed the benefit; after 2008 (ACCORD), only a minority (21%-36%) did.

Discordance exists between the research evidence and academic and clinical policy statements about the value of tight glycemic control to reduce micro- and macrovascular complications. This discordance may distort priorities in the research and practice agendas designed to improve the lives of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.


Sunday, October 2, 2016

Exercise hormone sheds fat, 'helps people stay slender'

Dr. Li-Jun Yang, a professor of hematopathology in the Department of Pathology, Immunology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Florida College of Medicine, directed the new research.

Dr. Yang and colleagues aimed to understand the role of irisin in humans better and increase the knowledge base of how the hormone helps convert calorie-storing white fat cells into energy-burning brown fat cells.

The researchers note that they believe the research to be the first of its kind to explore irisin's effects on human fat tissue and fat cells.

According to the researchers, irisin hormone - which surges when the heart and other muscles are exerted - may also inhibit the formation of fatty tissue.

The study findings, published in the American Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism, confirms previous conclusions that irisin may be a promising target to support people with obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Irisin works via a mechanism that boosts the activity of genes and a protein that are crucial to turning white fat cells into brown fat cells. The researchers also found irisin to have a role in burning fat by significantly increasing the amount of energy used by brown fat cells.


Saturday, October 1, 2016

Personal Care Products Safety Act: Facelift for FDA Regulation or Lipstick on a Pig? « Science-Based Medicine

The U.S. cosmetics industry, the largest in the world, is expected to reach $62 billion in revenues in 2016. Yet, despite the fact that its products are regularly applied to, and absorbed by, the body's largest organ (the skin) and even ingested in small amounts, the cosmetics industry is largely self-regulating.

There are over 57,000 different chemicals used in cosmetics. According to one research report, on average, women use 12 personal care products every day, exposing themselves to 168 chemical ingredients. Men use about half that, but still expose themselves to 85 unique chemicals a day. Many of these may be perfectly safe, we just don't know which ones because most have not been tested for safety.

Increasing concerns about everything from contact dermatitis to carcinogens led Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-California) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) to introduce the Personal Care Products Safety Act, giving the FDA greater regulatory oversight of the cosmetics industry. The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions held a hearing, "Exploring Current Practices in Cosmetic Development & Safety" last Thursday. A similar bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives. At least one other House bill was introduced in 2013 attempting to strengthen FDA regulatory authority over cosmetics, but it went nowhere.

Cosmetics are regulated under the Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act in pretty much the same manner as when the Act was originally passed in 1938.


U.S. Health-Care System Ranks as One of the Least-Efficient

The U.S. health-care system remains among the least-efficient in the world.

America was 50th out of 55 countries in 2014, according to a Bloomberg index that assesses life expectancy, health-care spending per capita and relative spending as a share of gross domestic product. Expenditures averaged $9,403 per person, about 17.1 percent of GDP, that year — the most recent for which data are available — and life expectancy was 78.9. Only Jordan, Colombia, Azerbaijan, Brazil and Russia ranked lower.

The U.S. has lagged near the bottom of the Bloomberg Health-Care Efficiency Index since it was created in 2012. Hong Kong and Singapore — consistently at the top — are smaller countries with less diverse populations. Their governments also play a stronger role in regulating and providing care, with spending per capita averaging $2,386 and longevity averaging about 83 years.

The U.S. system "tends to be more fragmented, less organized and coordinated, and that's likely to lead to inefficiency," said Paul Ginsburg, a professor at the University of Southern California and director of the Center for Health Policy at the Brookings Institution in Washington.


Smartphones are distracting us to death—but we can fight back

"People are not living in the present anymore," said Rosen. "That's the psychology of distraction—'distracted' means not living in the present. We're starting to see when people are not doing a very good job at living [or] having interactions…It's changing our definition of what it is to be alive."

"Social media has upped the ante in [terms of] more ways to occupy time, more ways to feel obligation," he said.