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Archive for the ‘Health News’ Category

By Candace McNaughton, ND

Acid blockers are one of the most prescribed medicines in the world. An article in the British Medical Journal reports on the risk of hip fracture in women who take acid blockers and who smoke. The risk of hip fracture increased by a whopping 50%! This was a survey of almost 80,000 patients over 10 years (from the Nurses Health Study), so the numbers are very likely to reflect the general population. The authors say that the reason is likely because acid blockers and smoking both interfere with calcium absorption. They also showed that taking calcium didn’t seem to help.

If you add on the risk factor of being small-framed, I bet the risk of fracture would be even higher. Acid blockers interfere with the absorption of a number of nutrients such as iron, B12, magnesium, and calcium. This is because the food doesn’t break down completely and because some nutrients (like calcium) are better absorbed in an acidic environment. Yes, that means that milk is a very poor way to get calcium (not to mention it’s not a food group and, and, arrgh!). To protect bone density, you need to start with weight-bearing exercise and take a comprehensive mineral supplement plus vitamin D.

Now the FDA has warned that acid blockers might increase the risk of C difficile-associated diarrhea. C diff is a bug that is usually picked up when people take a lot of antibiotics or from staying in a hospital. Sometimes after treatment, the diarrhea just won’t go away. If you take acid blockers and get C diff (which is on the rise), you are more likely to have chronic recurrent diarrhea that is very difficult to treat.

We need our stomach acid! Acid blockers are most often prescribed for ulcers and acid reflux. Why not make your ulcer go away instead of blocking acid so you don’t notice it’s there? One very important thing that I use for these conditions is chewable licorice extract, or DGL. It not only soothes on contact and is anti-inflammatory, but it also helps the tissue to actually heal. No worries if you’ve heard that licorice can aggravate high blood pressure. The chewable has that component taken out. At Glow we have a really yummy chocolate licorice extract chew. Please let me know if you have any questions.

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POTASSIUM IODIDE (KI)

What about the effects of taking potassium iodide? Who needs to take it? How soon after direct exposure should one take KI? Considering that iodine -131 needs to be inhaled directly or eaten to be exposed to our thyroids, I don’t consider potassium iodide a necessary supplement for continental US residents. The amount we inhale is very slight, detected radiation levels on the west coast are very small, and the side effects of KI are high at that large of a dose. The best solution I see is to decrease exposure through the foods that you eat, such as small fish from the pacific ocean and dairy products for the next few months until the iodine -131 is no longer radioactive.

High iodine intake can cause hyperthyroidism caused by Grave’s Disease or a toxic multinodular goiter. This is not to be taken lightly. We do not live in an iodine deficient location, and iodine is added into many products including our table salt. KI will only replete your thyroid gland until it is full, increasing the production of thyroid hormones. If the thyroid receives too much iodine it will stop hormone production entirely temporarily. The average American receives more iodine than their thyroid can use, and this is measured in micrograms, not milligrams. So taking a high milligram dose of iodine is a lot of iodine for your body! So if you really want to decrease your exposure, avoid dairy products and pacific ocean (except for deep ocean fish) seafood.

Here’s a great article on how much iodine supplementation the thyroid needs:

http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=18119

Here’s what the CDC has to say about KI

http://www.bt.cdc.gov/radiation/ki.asp

Here’s what the FDA has to say:

http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/EmergencyPreparedness/BioterrorismandDrugPreparedness/ucm072265.htm

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By Dr. Rachel Erickson

THE DISASTER

There’s a lot of contradicting news floating around regarding the Fukushima nuclear disaster and possible radiation exposure from the leaking radioactive elements. There seems to be conflicting news about how large the problem or how contained the plant really is. Things are definitely cooling down over there, but what is the truth about the incident? Hard to tell. Here are some interesting articles that discuss this:

  • This explains how nuclear reactors work and where things went wrong when the earthquake and then tsunami hit the plant:

http://bravenewclimate.com/2011/03/13/fukushima-simple-explanation/

  • Here’s the latest news on what’s going on with the reactors:

http://www.businessinsider.com/japan-nuclear-crisis-2011-3

THE RADIATION

There’s conflicting viewpoints on the severity of radiation exposure, and the potential safety versus harm of taking a supplemental potassium iodine to protect the thyroid gland.

There’s a few ways to think about radiation exposure. First: how are radioactive isotopes absorbed into a body? Do they float in the air? Do we inhale them? Do we step on them? Do we eat them? Yes they fly through the air, and then they fall down and land on clothes, grass, ocean, etc. You can inhale these substances directly after an explosion if you are near enough before they fall to the ground. Most exposure to radiation is from eating plants and animals that have the isotopes on – or in – them. That’s why milk is such a big concern. Cows eat the grass that the radioisotopes fall on and then produce milk with trace levels of radiation, which we then eat and drink.

“Meggitt [a retired health physicist, and former editor of the Journal of Radiological Protection] worked for the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority and its later commercial offshoots for 25 years. He says there’s an enormous variation in the risks associated with swallowing the same amount of different radioactive materials—and even some difference between the same dose, of the same material, but in different chemical forms.

It all depends on two factors:
1)The physical characteristics of the radioactivity—i.e, What’s its half-life? Is the radiation emitted alpha, beta or gamma?

2) The way the radioactivity travels around and is taken up by the body—i.e., How much is absorbed by the blood stream? What tissues does this specific isotope tend to accumulate in?”

http://www.boingboing.net/2010/08/27/bananas-are-radioact.html

This article explains the different radioisotopes and their long-term health risks with large exposure:  

http://ecocentric.blogs.time.com/2011/03/12/japans-radiation-exposure-how-serious-is-it/

One scientist’s response about radiation poisoning:

“Dr. [David J.] Brenner said the iodine pills were protective, but were “a bit of a myth” because their use is based on the belief that the risk is from inhaling radioactive iodine. Actually, he said, 98 percent of people’s exposure comes from milk and other dairy products.

“The way radioactive iodine gets into human beings is an indirect route,” he said. “It falls to the ground, cows eat it and make milk with radioactive iodine, and you get it from drinking the milk. You get very little from inhaling it. The way to prevent it is just to stop people from drinking the milk.” He said that the epidemic of thyroid cancer around Chernobyl could have been prevented if the government had immediately stopped people from drinking milk.

Crops can also be contaminated. “I wouldn’t be eating an apple from a tree close to the plant,” Dr. Brenner said.”
Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2011/03/14/radiation-exposure-fast-facts-about-thyroid-cancer-and-other-health-risks/#ixzz1IlPVz3OQ

Ultimately Iodine -131 has a half life of 8 days. That means that 8 days after the radioactive version of iodine is made half of it has decayed and is no longer radioactive. Then in 8 more days, that ½ that’s left decays until only ½ is radioactive and so on. So within a few weeks the amount of iodine-131 left in the environment is very low. Plutonium is heavy so it will fall down before it reaches us. Caesium and Iodine will make it across the ocean to the US.

Also we need to consider the fact that Japan is very far away and what amount of radiation is actually reaching us? Some of the radioactive elements land in the ocean, some of them blow to other areas of the west coast or Canada. So how much is actually getting in the ocean contaminating the fish, or landing on your doorstep, or on the grass of the cows whose milk you drink?

This article talks about how much is reaching US soil:

http://ecocentric.blogs.time.com/2011/03/18/radiation-reaches-the-u-s-and/

Here’s the WHO’s food safety recommendations:

http://www.who.int/hac/crises/jpn/faqs/en/index7.html

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This post is in response to the requests of clients to learn more about Shamanism and what happens during the Shamanic treatment. To schedule your own appointment with me call Glow’s office. 206 568 7545

It began after a “dark night of the soul” which occurred during the time of my two ACL (1992, 1995) reconstructions and one major meniscus repair. It wasn’t until my first Shamanic session that I started to get a framework for my own personal “spiritual” experiences, some of which had been fairly disconcerting and life changing.

 At first I thought, it was PRETTY kooky. But hey, I was already an acupuncturist and many people think that’s pretty crazy too. I received my first session as a gift and didn’t know what to expect. She asked me what I wanted to focus on and I was unclear. I didn’t really have any problems. Finally, I conceded that having been born and raised in the country, I sometimes found the city noise, lights, and traffic to be a little much. Was that something she could help with? She said we’d find out. I don’t remember much else from that first encounter. I lay on the ground and she shook a rattle near my head. I relaxed. Afterword, I no longer felt that way about the city. I found that interesting.

 Betsy  and I began to work together in the same office.  I noticed that with certain issues, she helped people address in a couple sessions what I felt would take many more,  if not years to treat with acupuncture. This included physical, emotional and spiritual issues. I’ve included a small study through Kaiser that shows promise in the treatment of jaw pain with Shamanic medicine. Kaiser study on jaw pain

I asked Betsy to be my mentor and began training in 2002.

Shamanism is not a religion (unless you want it to be) although it can add depth to any religion. It is an ancient healing modality which uses near universal principles and archetypes to access spiritual information and facilitate healing.  It provides direct access to personal spiritual information. It is worlds of archetypes and storytelling. It is realms that we all know and have access to like nature, and myth. Anyone who has ever felt healed after a good book or a poignant movie understands that image and messages at the right time can feel like they are “just for us” and have profound effects. It’s also about connection or reconnection with our natural state, and our natural world.

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Glow’s ND Dr. Rachel Erikson forwarded this email to me today and I thought I’d pass it along.

The report, Mean Body Weight, Height, and Body Mass Index (BMI) 1960-2002: United States, shows that the average height of a man aged 20-74 years increased from just over 5’8″ in 1960 to 5’9½” in 2002, while the average height of a woman the same age increased from slightly over 5’3″ 1960 to 5’4″ in 2002.

Meanwhile, the average weight for men aged 20-74 years rose dramatically from 166.3 pounds in 1960 to 191 pounds in 2002, while the average weight for women the same age increased from 140.2 pounds in 1960 to 164.3 pounds in 2002.

Though the average weight for men aged 20-39 years increased by nearly 20 pounds over the last four decades, the increase was greater among older men:

  • Men between the ages of 40 and 49 were nearly 27 pounds heavier on average in 2002 compared to 1960.
  • Men between the ages of 50 and 59 were nearly 28 pounds heavier on average in 2002 compared to 1960.
  • Men between the ages of 60 and 74 were almost 33 pounds heavier on average in 2002 compared to 1960.

For women, the near opposite trend occurred:

  • Women aged 20-29 were nearly 29 pounds heavier on average in 2002 compared to 1960.
  • Women aged 40-49 were about 25½ pounds heavier on average in 2002 compared to 1960.
  • Women aged 60-74 were about 17½ pounds heavier on average in 2002 compared to 1960.

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Need another reason to eat organics? Pesticides have been tied to hyperactivity in children according to a new study published in Pediatrics. CBS news ran an article that gives a good summary of the study. Of course, their take home message is wash your fruits and veggies. Those of us here at Glow however, will continue to buy ours pesticide free.

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Chinese medicine is not just a collection of dusty books or archaic techniques. It is a living medicine. An example of this is the use of far-infrared energy to promote healing.  Many of you may be familiar with the heat lamps (TDP lamps) used by our acupuncturists. These lamps emit far-infrared heat which penetrates deeply into the body to promote the healing of tissues.

Did this therapy begin thousands of years ago? No. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about the history of the TDP lamp.

History of inventionTDP is an acronym for “Teding Diancibo Pu” which loosely translated means special electromagnetic spectrum.

The TDP mineral lamp was invented in China in 1978 and exhibited at the 1986 Zagreb International Fair in Yugoslavia in competition with 560 inventions from 18 countries by the inventor Mr. Gou Wenbin. It was also exhibited at the 1986 Brussels Eureka World Fair for Invention. Mr. Wenbin died in the late 1980s.

The story told about the discovery of TDP mineral lamp therapy begins in a black clay factory in rural China, where in spite of a work environment where workers were exposed to extremes of cold, wet, and heat, they had a very low incidence of illness. Upon further investigation, the differentiating factor was determined to be the beneficial far-infrared radiation from the hot clay. Analysis of the clay and later experimentation led to the development of the medical device now known as the TDP mineral lamp.

Experimentation with TDP mineral lamps started and by 1979, 36 universities, 45 graduate schools, 41 research institutes, 250 hospitals, and 3000 thousand medical doctors and researchers formed an international TDP society[1] for the purpose of performing clinical studies related to the effects of TDP mineral lamp therapy.

The state of research in 1985 showed TDP mineral lamp therapy to have been successfully used to treat over 30 different human and animal diseases and disorders. Thirty million people had received medical treatment from TDP mineral lamps. Clinical evidence[2][3][4] confirmed that TDP mineral lamp therapy would reduce inflammation, calm pain, and improve micro-circulation, and balance metabolism. Evidence was gathered substantiating TDP mineral lamp use promoted cell growth, reproduction, and repair, concurrently with promotion of specific enzyme activity levels and immune function.[5]

Now once again Chinese medicine is growing and changing. Far-infrared technology has expanded from the TDP lamp to include a unique fabric that can be worn over an affected area. Touted to relieve pain, promote circulation and repair tissue, ThermoFlow® products are made with a special fabric that is made of 5% ceramic minerals. It is the mineral which reflect the body’s natural far-infrared energy back into the area which is affected. This reflected energy has been shown to penetrate through layers of skin, deep into tissues. According to Thermoflow® “this stimulates micro-vibrations which initiate a thermal reaction to elevate tissue temperature. The body responds by dilating micro-vessels and major blood vessels. Chinese Medicine believes that Qi is the key to good health. Far-infrared energy improves qi flow. By improving the qi flowto an area, pain is relieved.These functional fabrics accelerate your treatments and provide relief for patients between visits.”

We’re ordering some soon. If you’re interested in being a test subject let us know! They are available to treat pain in the knee, wrist, ankle and torso. Stay tuned for updates!!

 

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