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Effect of testosterone treatment on cardiac biomarkers in a randomised controlled trial of men with type 2 diabetes
Abstract Objective To assess the effect of testosterone treatment on cardiac biomarkers in men with type 2 diabetes (T2D). Design Randomized double-blind, parallel, placebo-controlled trial. Patients Men aged 35-70 years with
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Obamacare?s Next 5 Hurdles to Clear 03 July 2015, 19.36 Medical
Obamacare?s Next 5 Hurdles to Clear
In its first 5 years, the Affordable Care Act has survived technical meltdowns, a presidential election, two Supreme Court challenges -- including one resolved Thursday -- and dozens of repeal efforts in Congress. But its
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Forced Aerobic Exercise Enhances Motor Recovery After Stroke: A Case Report.
OBJECTIVE: Previously, we demonstrated that forced aerobic exercise (FE) increases the pattern of neural activation in Parkinson's disease. We sought to evaluate whether FE, when coupled with repetitive task practice, could
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Lower eccentric hamstring strength and single leg hop for distance predict hamstring injury in PETE students
Buy Article: $51.63 plus tax (Refund Policy)       Abstract: Hamstring injuries have not been under research in physical education teacher education (PETE) students so far. Within the frame of the development
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Why more sleep could help you shed pounds 26 May 2015, 17.17 Medical
Why more sleep could help you shed pounds
May 21, 2015, 8:13 AM|If you're trying to drop a few pounds, you might want to spend more time sleeping. Clinical psychologist and sleep medicine specialist Michael Breus joins "CBS This Morning" to discuss how your sleep
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Jump-start your built-in detox system with a natural cleanse
May 22, 2015, 8:14 AM|Juicing, cleansing and fad diets may not be the best way to re-boot your body. Samantha Heller, registered dietitian, exercise physiologist and author of "The Only Cleanse: A 14-day Natural Detox Plan to
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Nitazoxanide: A first-in-class broad-spectrum antiviral agent
Nitazoxanide: A first-in-class broad-spectrum antiviral agent   JavaScript is disabled on your browser.Please enable JavaScript to use all the features on this page. JavaScript is disabled on your browser.
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Pre-clinical curriculum complaint corner. 26 December 2014, 02.49 Medical
Pre-clinical curriculum complaint corner.
RustedFox said: ↑ The "old guard" administrators will either embrace change or die. Eventually.When you say (copy/paste, sorry): "After all, if you could master the preclinical years via podcasts, why couldn't the system be
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Waveform capnography 26 December 2014, 02.49 Medical
Waveform capnography
We do waveform capnography on every patient that gets conscious sedation (Nasal cannula) and continuous monitoring on ALL intubated patients in the hospital. I am at a community/academic hospital on the south side of Chicago,
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Viagra and heart disease 19 October 2014, 22.24 Medical
Viagra and heart disease
October 20, 2014 Viagra could be used as an effective treatment in men with early stage heart failure and cardiac hypertrophy according to a new study. Italian researchers analysed data from 24 clinical trials to assess
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Distinguishing Bipolar Disorder From Other Psychiatric Disorders in Children
October 2014, 16:516 Date: 15 Oct 2014 Rent the article at a discount Rent now * Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT. Get Access Abstract Pediatric onset bipolar disorder (BD) is a challenging
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Tapping in Times Square 08 October 2014, 23.44 Medical
Tapping in Times Square
October 7, 2014, 5:03 AM|Nick Ortner, best-selling author of "The Tapping Solution," claims that tapping, also known as the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), can help calm the body in times of stress or crisis. He teaches us
Read More 546 Hits 0 Ratings
Obama Considers Tighter Ebola Screening for Travelers From West Africa
Tighter Ebola Screening Considered for Travelers And calls on other nations to do more to help control the deadly epidemic WebMD News from HealthDay By Dennis Thompson HealthDay Reporter MONDAY, Oct. 6, 2014 (HealthDay News)
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In Liberia and U.S., Precautions for Two Ebola Workers
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS September 27, 2014 MONROVIA, Liberia — Liberia’s chief medical officer is placing herself under quarantine for 21 days after her office assistant died of Ebola. Bernice Dahn, a deputy
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Future perspective of probiotics in dermatology: an old wine in new bottle.
Probiotics are live microbial food supplements that are beneficial to the host health when administered in adequate amounts. Probiotics do have an exciting concept in digestive functions, but these live microbes have wider
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Pump Up: Ablation Reverses Poor LV Function in Atrial FibPump Up: Ablation Reverses Poor LV Function in Atrial Fib
LAS VEGAS, NV — Left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) climbed and symptoms vastly improved, on average, in patients initially with atrial fibrillation (AF) and LVEF
Read More 636 Hits 1 Rating
Understanding Today’s Trends in Healthcare and the Clinical Laboratory and Pathology Testing Marketplace
Category: Coding, Billing, and Collections, Compliance, Legal, and Malpractice, Digital Pathology, Laboratory Management and Operations, Laboratory News, Laboratory Operations, Laboratory Pathology, Managed Care Contracts &
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Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptors in the brain: controlling food intake and
          body weight
A subscription is required for you to read this article in full. If you are a subscriber, you may sign in to continue reading. Already have an account? Click here to sign into your account. Don't have an account? Click here
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The arcuate nucleus mediates GLP-1 receptor agonist liraglutide-dependent weight loss
Article tools Author information Related Video Need help? J Clin Invest. doi:10.1172/JCI75276. Copyright © 2014, The American Society for Clinical Investigation. Research Article Anna Secher1, Jacob Jelsing2,
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New gene mutations for Wilms tumor found 06 September 2014, 20.26 Medical
New gene mutations for Wilms tumor found
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center and the Gill Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children's Medical Center, Dallas, have made significant progress in defining new genetic causes of Wilms tumor, a type of
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China Bribery Probe: GSK Manager Charged with Corruption; Concerned Pharma Executives May Leave China
The Chinese bribery allegations against GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) have taken a scary turn for pharmaceutical executives working abroad. According to Chinese authorities, Glaxo's employees engaged in a bribery scheme with doctors
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7 Stunning Ways Life Was Different in the 1960s 06 September 2014, 20.26 Medical
7 Stunning Ways Life Was Different in the 1960s
The 1960s has great cachet. The decade earned it with sex, drugs, and rock and roll, and big-time advances in civil rights, women's rights, and more. But wow, did that decade begin in a dim place. Here are just a few of the
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Testosterone Treatment Lawsuit News: New Filing Alleges...
New York, New York (PRWEB) August 22, 2014 Testosterone treatment lawsuits (http://www.testosteronelawsuitclaims.com/) continue to be filed in U.S. courts on behalf of men who allegedly suffered serious cardiovascular events
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3D-printed vertebra used in spine surgery 22 August 2014, 19.28 Medical
3D-printed vertebra used in spine surgery
Surgeons in Beijing, China, have successfully implanted an artificial, 3D-printed vertebra replacement in a young boy with bone cancer. They say it is the first time such a procedure has ever been done. During a five-hour
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Not "depression":  Manic-depression and Robin Williams
Was it “depression” that killed Robin Williams, as most media reports say? Or depression mixed with alcohol and drugs.  But “depression” isn’t a diagnosis or a disease; like fever, it’s a set of symptoms that can
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A cross-sectional analysis of the relationship between uric acid and coronary atherosclerosis in patients with suspected coronary artery disease in China
Research article Yujiao Sun, Xin Yu, Ying Zhi, Song Geng, Hua Li, Ting Liu, Ke Xu, Ling Chen, Chunwei Wu and Guoxian Qi BMC Cardiovascular Disorders 2014, 14:101  doi:10.1186/1471-2261-14-101 Published: 16 August
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GARFIELD-AF Off and Running in the United StatesGARFIELD-AF Off and Running in the United States
Editor's Note: This discussion was recorded in March 2014 at the American College of Cardiology (ACC) Scientific Sessions in Washington, DC. Samuel Z. Goldhaber, MD: Hello. This is Dr. Sam Goldhaber, for the Clot Blog at
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Liberia president apologises for high toll for Ebola health workers
(Reuters) - Liberia's President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf apologised on Saturday for the high death toll among the country's healthcare workers who have fought an Ebola outbreak, which has killed nearly 1,000 people in three
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From stem cells to cardiomyocytes: the role of forces in cardiac maturation, aging, and disease.
Stem cell differentiation into a variety of lineages is known to involve signaling from the extracellular niche, including from the physical properties of that environment. What regulates stem cell responses to these cues is
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A nationwide clinical quality improvement pilot: interventions to improve chlamydia screening
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Aspirin could dramatically cut cancer risk, according to biggest study yet
Doctors warn that before aspirin can be used to prevent cancer, there are questions over dosage and who is likely to have side-effects. Photograph: Tim Boyle/Getty An aspirin a day could
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How do sleep trackers work? 28 July 2014, 20.03 Medical
How do sleep trackers work?
The average adult needs at least seven hours of sleep each night, though unfortunately many get a lot less. Approximately 70 million Americans have a sleep disorder, which may be why there's tremendous interest in popular
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The lessons health care can learn from Steve Jobs
By Clement Bottino, MD, Fellow in General Pediatrics at Children’s Hospital Boston’s Primary Care Center Steve Jobs Memorial outside an Apple store. Image flickr/Ron Cogswell Like many people across the country, I was sad
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Zoo In Argentina Says 'Sad Bear' Too Old To Go To Canada
hide captionArturo, the only polar bear in Argentina, lives in captivity at a zoo in Mendoza. The plight of the "sad bear" has spawned more than 400,000 signatures on a petition to get him moved to a "better life" in
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Sex Addiction May Function Like Drug Addiction In The Brain
A new study suggests that sex addiction may work a lot like drug addiction in the brain. There’s been a long debate about whether compulsive sexual behavior – including frequent thoughts about sex, having sex, or watching
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Hypertension and treatment outcomes in Palestine refugees in United Nations Relief and Works Agency primary health care clinics in Jordan
Original Article A. Khader1, L. Farajallah1, Y. Shahin1, M. Hababeh1, I. Abu-Zayed2, R. Zachariah3, A. Kochi4, A. Kapur5, A. D. Harries6,7,*, I. Shaikh1 and A. Seita1 Article first published online: 12 JUL
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The Problem with Perfectionism — How to Truly Succeed!
  Follow me on Twitter!   Are you a perfectionist? Many perfectionists are very hard on themselves when it comes to perceived imperfections, faults, and shortcomings. You may think that you’re not good enough in some
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NPR Listeners Show A Keen Ear For Temperature 06 July 2014, 22.30 Medical
NPR Listeners Show A Keen Ear For Temperature
1 min 20 secDownload NPR conducted an online poll asking listeners if they could hear the difference between cold and hot water simply by listening to the sound of the water being poured. Most listeners were
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Pediatric Pit Crew CPR 29 June 2014, 15.19 Medical
Pediatric Pit Crew CPR
A reader asks, “Does your Pit Crew CPR process work for pediatrics?”See also: Pit Crew CPR – The Explicit Details The answer is, “Yes!” with some minor modifications. We are developing a class for Pediatric Pit Crew
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ASD, ADHD, mental health conditions and psychopharmacology in neurogenetic syndromes: parent survey
Original Article C. Reilly1,2,*, J. Senior2 and L. Murtalgh2 Article first published online: 25 JUN 2014 DOI: 10.1111/jir.12147 © 2014 MENCAP and International Association of the Scientific Study of Intellectual and
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Depressed? It May Be Celiac Disease 27 June 2014, 16.43 Medical
Depressed? It May Be Celiac Disease
Melanie had been feeling out of sorts for years. No matter how well she slept, she was often fatigued. She had frequent headaches. She had diarrhea so often, she figured it was just how her body worked. She wryly said that she
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Survey: Nurses Harsh on Overweight Patients 27 June 2014, 16.43 Medical
Survey: Nurses Harsh on Overweight Patients
Meeting Coverage Published: Jun 21, 2014 By Ed Susman , Contributing Writer, MedPage Today NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Nurse practitioners responding to a survey indicated a critical attitude when dealing with overweight
Read More 626 Hits 0 Ratings
Consensus Guidelines -- Hepatitis C ManagementConsensus Guidelines -- Hepatitis C Management
Koff RS. Review article: the efficacy and safety of sofosbuvir, a novel, oral nucleotide NS5B polymerase inhibitor, in the treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus infection. Aliment Pharmacol Ther 2014; 39:
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Prenatal and perinatal factors in eating disorders: A descriptive review
Review Anu Raevuori MD, PhD1,2,3,4,*, Milla S. Linna MD1 and Anna Keski-Rahkonen MD, PhD, MPH1 Article first published online: 19 JUN 2014 DOI: 10.1002/eat.22323 Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals,
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Psychological Distress Affects Tobacco Use Differently for Men and Women
Follow us on Facebook A new study in the American Journal of Health Behavior finds that women are more likely than men to use tobacco products after experiencing severe psychological distress. The researchers, led by Mary
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Dr. Oz scolded at Senate hearing on diet scams
Popular TV talk show host Dr. Mehmet Oz is defending his claims of "miracle" weight-loss supplements amid criticism from members of Congress. Oz testified at a Senate hearing Tuesday on deceptive advertising for
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Fear of aging moderates post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms among older adults exposed to hurricane sandy.
[unable to retrieve full-text content]Authors: Palgi Y, Shrira A, Goodwin R, Hamama-Raz Y, Ben-Ezra M PMID: 24927879 [PubMed - in process] (Source: The American Journal of Geriatric
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Expression of SSEA-4 in GBM [Biochemistry] 15 June 2014, 20.23 Medical
Expression of SSEA-4 in GBM [Biochemistry]
Yi-Wei Loua,b, Pao-Yuan Wangb,c, Shih-Chi Yehb,d, Po-Kai Chuangb,e, Shiou-Ting Lib, Chung-Yi Wub, Kay-Hooi Khoof, Michael Hsiaob, Tsui-Ling Hsub, and Chi-Huey Wongb,1 aInstitute of Biochemical Sciences, National Taiwan
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Light Therapy Improves Sleep, Behavior in Alzheimer's PatientsLight Therapy Improves Sleep, Behavior in Alzheimer's Patients
MINNEAPOLIS — Light therapy tailored to increase circadian stimulation during the day has benefits for patients with Alzheimer's disease and related dementias living in long-term care facilities, a new study
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Practicing Mind-Body Exercises to Prevent or Control Smoking
At the national level, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), estimates that 42.1 million people, or 18.1% of all adults (aged 18 years or older) in the United States smoke cigarettes. Cigarette smoking is more
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Coke ad: It takes 23 minutes to burn off a soda
NEW YORK - Coca-Cola (KO) is taking on obesity, this time with an online video showing how fun it could be to burn off the 140 calories in a can of its soda. In the ad, the world's biggest beverage maker asks what would happen
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Victoza Accused of Causing Pancreatitis 08 June 2014, 22.37 Medical
Victoza Accused of Causing Pancreatitis
Endocrinology Published: Jun 6, 2014 The watchdog group Public Citizen has conducted its own analysis of FDA adverse event reports and concluded that the type 2 diabetes drug liraglutide (Victoza) likely causes
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"Godfather of ecstasy" dies at 88 05 June 2014, 15.48 Medical
"Godfather of ecstasy" dies at 88
Alexander ("Sasha") Shulgin, known as the "Godfather of ecstasy," died on Monday. The 88-year-old, who passed away after a long battle with liver cancer, is credited with inventing a number of psychedelic drugs. He is most
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Houttuynia cordata Attenuates Lipid Accumulation via Activation of AMP-Activated Protein Kinase Signaling Pathway in HepG2 Cells.
Houttuynia cordata (H. cordata) from the family Saururaceae is a perennial herb native to Southeast Asia. It possesses a range of medicinal properties to treat several disease symptoms including allergic inflammation and
Read More 686 Hits 0 Ratings
Acute Lipotoxicity Regulates Severity of Biliary Acute Pancreatitis without Affecting Its Initiation.
Obese patients have worse outcomes during acute pancreatitis (AP). Previous animal models of AP have found worse outcomes in obese rodents who may have a baseline proinflammatory state. Our aim was to study the role of acute
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Committee opinion no. 600: ethical issues in the care of the obese woman.
: Rates of obesity in the United States have increased rapidly over the past several decades, and physicians should be prepared to care for obese patients in a nonjudgmental manner, being cognizant of the medical, social, and
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We're more stressed at home than we are at work: Juggling household chores means a day at the office seems easier in comparison
Preparing meals and getting children ready for school is key stress culprit Levels of stress hormone cortisol in saliva soared in home environmentWomen are more affected by stress in the home than menThis is because they often
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Thousands of dogs, and 3 people, sickened by jerky pet treats
Rewarding your favorite canine with a tasty treat may pose health risks. The Food and Drug Administration released updated information on Friday about an ongoing investigation into illnesses and deaths caused by jerky pet
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Antioxidants 18 May 2014, 19.02 Medical
Antioxidants
May 12, 2014 Eating an antioxidant found in red wine, dark chocolate and berries does not help people live longer new research reveals. An Italian study of over 780 people has found eating a diet rich in the antioxidant
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The guide to perfect sleep - top experts share their best slumber tips and tricks
Getting a good night's sleep is crucial for your cognitive and physical health[GETTY - Pic Posed by Models] AVOID STIMULANTS AND KEEP YOUR ROOM DARK Paul Tierney is an ear, nose and throat consultant at the Spire Hospital
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CAC Scores Predict Aspirin Benefit in Primary PreventionCAC Scores Predict Aspirin Benefit in Primary Prevention
MINNEAPOLIS, MN — Predicted benefit from daily aspirin therapy for primary prevention exceeds risk when coronary artery calcium (CAC) imaging scores reach or exceed 100, whereas the risks surpass benefits at a CAC score of 0,
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WITHDRAWN: Low back pain across the lifecourse
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Energy requirements, protein-energy metabolism and balance, and carbohydrates in preterm infants.
Energy is necessary for all vital functions of the body at molecular, cellular, organ, and systemic levels. Preterm infants have minimum energy requirements for basal metabolism and growth, but also have requirements for unique
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I lost 4lb by joining the cult of kale says MARIANNE POWER
Marianne Power spent a week eating kale in different waysShe tried the vegetable in a smoothie, salad, facemask and even ice creamMarianne believes she feels healthier and has continued eating kaleBy Marianne Power
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Woman's wisdom teeth operation left her in agony for SIX YEARS
Without proper scans of teeth, there is a danger of permanent nerve damage Carol Russell, 46, from Birmingham, can't even kiss her children Her wisdom tooth was removed in 2008 but several operations couldn't stop the
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athenahealth Announces 2013 Meaningful Use Attestation Rate and Early Stage 2 Performance Data
WATERTOWN, Mass., April 22, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- athenahealth, Inc. (Nasdaq:ATHN), a leading provider of cloud-based services for electronic health record (EHR), practice management, and care coordination, today announced
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Can you afford to eat healthily? 26 April 2014, 22.11 Medical
Can you afford to eat healthily?
April 23, 2014 We’ve found out over a third of the UK are struggling to eat healthily. Our survey revealed two thirds of people in the UK wish they could eat more healthily, but 42% said they can't because it’s too
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Risk of completed suicide after bariatric surgery: a systematic review - Peterhänsel C, Petroff D, Klinitzke G, Kersting A, Wagner B.
Affiliation Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany; Leipzig University Medical Center, Integrated Research and Treatment Center (IFB) AdiposityDiseases Germany,
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Embryos with Genetic Disease Destroyed for Their Stem Cells, Cell Lines Added to NIH Registry
King's College in London is proud that they have provided 16 new embryonic stem cell lines to the United States' National Institutes of Health (NIH) registry of stem cell lines eligible for federal funding. On the King's
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Spiritual Life Reports

When you are paralyzed into in-action 20 November 2012, 18.02 Spiritual
When you are paralyzed into in-action
How to put the dynamic of hope into action. You have the same DNA as Gandhi, Václav Havel and Goenawan Mohamad DAVID RICKEY — Hope is a great four-letter word, but it gets lost in the shuffle of our lives if it
Read More 5432 Hits 0 Ratings
To die for 09 August 2012, 15.37 Spiritual
To die for
Will Baby Boomers choose to expire in hospitals and nursing homes? Or will they take matters into their own hands? BY DAVID RICKEY —  Would you prefer to die on purpose — or with purpose? Late, great writers like Arthur
Read More 7415 Hits 1 Rating
Meditation lite 23 May 2012, 18.50 Spiritual
Meditation lite
They say that meditation is sitting on a cushion and emptying your mind. But I do mine while I’m thinking BY DAVID RICKEY  — I know it doesn’t come as a surprise to say that meditation is important for spiritual growth.
Read More 7013 Hits 0 Ratings
Can an ‘Easter moment’ cure loneliness and fear?
How would you survive the loss if your best friend, mentor or shrink were crucified? You’d have to awaken your own inner guru. DAVID RICKEY — His career was short and ended with his crucifixion. It looked like failure. What
Read More 6989 Hits 0 Ratings
Decoding codependence 20 March 2012, 01.46 Spiritual
Decoding codependence
If we are all co-dependents now, what is America’s turn-around? * BY DAVID RICKEY — Marriages, mortgages, and just-missed connections. In the annals of clinical psychology, the term “Co-Dependence” describes a
Read More 9215 Hits 0 Ratings
Haiti, consciousness and charity 20 March 2012, 01.46 Spiritual
Haiti, consciousness and charity
A psychotherapist and Episcopal priest makes healing in Haiti a life – and spiritual – mission BY DAVID RICKEY – Haiti is a fascinating place in its own right, but for me it serves as a kind of microcosm of issues that
Read More 7854 Hits 0 Ratings
What is codependence? 10 March 2012, 17.32 Spiritual
What is codependence?
If we are all co-dependents now, what is America’s turn-around? * BY DAVID RICKEY — Marriages, mortgages, and just-missed connections. In the annals of clinical psychology, the term “Co-Dependence” describes a
Read More 7639 Hits 0 Ratings
Are we All codependents now? * 07 March 2012, 16.12 Spiritual
Are we All codependents now? *
If America is the most codependent culture on the planet, what is the turn-around? BY DAVID RICKEY — Marriages, mortgages, and just-missed connections. In the annals of clinical psychology, the term “Co-Dependence”
Read More 8071 Hits 0 Ratings
We are All codependents now * 03 March 2012, 23.44 Spiritual
We are All codependents now *
If America is the most codependent culture on the planet, what is the turn-around? BY DAVID RICKEY — Marriages, mortgages, and just-missed connections. In the annals of clinical psychology, the term “Co-Dependence”
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On Ash Wednesday: Is your life filled by Ego, or Grace?
Ashes, Ashes, We All Fall Down. Ashes on your forehead can begin a reorientation of your heart. BY DAVID RICKEY — In the Judeo-Christian tradition, ashes are a symbol of penitence and mortality. In the Old
Read More 7463 Hits 1 Rating

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Pope Francis, Neil Young, and 100,000 Beekeepers Take a Stand Against Toxic Agriculture PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

What do Pope Francis, Neil Young, and German beekeepers have in common? They're all speaking out against genetically engineered crops and the excessive use of toxic pesticides.

Meanwhile, the chemical technology industry is feverishly trying to revamp its image by renaming itself and putting out new spins on words to disguise what they're really all about.

The sad fact is, the chemical industry has to a large degree taken over the food industry, not to mention hijacked the federal regulatory process. In essence, most of the population is being fed by poison experts.

The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), which has been instrumental in keeping Americans in the dark about what's in our food, also admits it has played an integral role in shaping the draconian "DARK Act," which delivers Monsanto everything they've ever wanted on a silver platter while obliterating the democratic process.

Pope Francis Calls for Radical Transformations to Confront Environmental Degradation

On June 18, 2015, Pope Francis' 184-page long Encyclical letter1,2 was published, in which he calls for the transformation of lifestyles, politics, agriculture, economics, and business in general to tackle environmental degradation.

"The violence present in our hearts is also reflected in the symptoms of sickness evident in the soil, in the water, in the air and in all forms of life," he says.

And, while praising scientific advancements, he criticizes the use of novel technologies without adequate forethought, noting that: "our immense technological development has not been accompanied by a development in human responsibility, values and conscience."

To many people's surprise, Pope Francis appears to have a fairly comprehensive grasp of the subject of genetically engineered food and its many inherent hazards, both to the environment and human health.

Far from coming from a strictly religious perspective, he comprehensively addresses the issue from the point of ecological and economical balance, noting:3

"The expan­sion of these [genetically engineered] crops has the effect of destroying the complex network of ecosystems, diminishing the diversity of production and affecting region­al economies, now and in the future.

In various countries, we see an expansion of oligopolies for the production of cereals and other products needed for their cultivation. This dependency would be aggravated were the production of in­fertile seeds to be considered; the effect would be to force farmers to purchase them from larger producers.

Certainly, these issues require constant at­tention and a concern for their ethical implica­tions. A broad, responsible scientific and social debate needs to take place, one capable of con­sidering all the available information and of call­ing things by their name.

Discussions are needed in which all those directly or indirectly affected (farmers, consumers, civil authorities, scientists, seed producers, people living near fumigated fields, and others) can make known their problems and concerns, and have access to adequate and reliable infor­mation in order to make decisions for the com­mon good, present and future.

This is a complex environmental issue; it calls for a comprehensive approach which would require, at the very least, greater efforts to finance various lines of inde­pendent, interdisciplinary research capable of shedding new light on the problem."

German Beekeepers Call for Nationwide Ban of GE Crops

The issue of GE crops goes hand-in-hand with the issue of rising pesticide use, and the effects these chemicals are having on soils, pollinating insects, and human health.

Bees can be viewed as "canaries in the coal mine," and over the last decade beekeepers have grappled with bee colony collapse disorder (CCD). Bees are priceless as they pollinate one-third of the food we eat. Just about every fruit and vegetable you can imagine is dependent on the pollinating services of bees.

But bee die-offs have in recent years been so severe that many farmers were barely able to get enough bees to get the job done, and beekeepers are asked to deliver their bees over far greater distances than ever before due to bee shortages.

Toxic pesticides have long been suspected of being responsible for CCD, and GE crops are particularly contaminated. To protect these crucial pollinators, the German Beekeepers Association (DIB), which represents nearly 100,000 beekeepers, has called for a nationwide ban on genetically engineered (GE) crops.

GE crops are approved on the European Union (EU) level, but recently adopted legislation4 allows member states to opt-out of the cultivation of GE crops if it so chooses. According to a report by GM Watch:5

"Under the law, a member state can ban a GMO in part or all of its territory. But the law has come under heavy criticism for failing to provide a solid basis for such bans.

The beekeepers are urging Agriculture Minister Christian Schmidt (CSU) to implement a Germany-wide ban on cultivation. The Minister pleads, however, for letting each state decide individually.

The beekeepers counter that a piecemeal approach will not work. Bees fly up to eight kilometers in search of food, the DIB said, so a juxtaposition of GM crop cultivation zones and GMO-free zones within Germany would be 'environmentally and agriculturally unacceptable.. 'Bees know no borders,' the DIB added."

Neil Young Sings About 'The Monsanto Years'

Neil Young's latest album, The Monsanto Years, is all about Monsanto and "exposing the myth of progress," to quote one of his musicians. Young has also made public statements decrying the hijacking of democracy by corporate interests, warning:6 "These Corporations were originally created to serve us but if we don't appropriately prioritize they will destroy us."

"I choose to speak Truth to this Economic Power," he writes. "I support those bringing these issues to light and those who fight for their rights like Freedom of Choice. But Freedom of Choice is meaningless without knowledge. That's why it's crucial we all get engaged and get informed.

That's why GMO labeling matters. Mothers need to know what they are feeding their children. They need freedom to make educated choices at the market.
When the people have voted for labeling, as they have in Vermont, they need our support when they are fighting these corporate interests trying to reverse the laws they have voted for and passed in the democratic process."

Don't Be Confused by the Chemical Industry's Word Games

Monsanto recently made a bid to take over Syngenta, the world's largest pesticide producer. The $45.1 billion bid was rejected, but there's still a chance for a merger, in which case Monsanto may assume the Syngenta name, or a new more "neutral" name—a move intended to dissociate Monsanto from its long list of atrocities and lies. The two companies are also floating ideas for relocating the merged chemical behemoth to a lower-tax region to avoid US taxes.7

Whatever happens, I sincerely doubt Monsanto will be able to escape its past as I am committed to relentlessly exposing their lies, frauds, and deceptions to the masses. We will make sure that its sordid history will quickly transfer over to whatever name it assumes next. Still, words and names can be powerful, and the chemical technology industry is busy renaming and rebranding itself and its toxic wares in an obvious effort to disguise their true nature.

Take the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), for example, which on June 17 renamed itself the Biotechnology Innovation Organization.8 Basically, they want to remove the idea of "industry" from the industry. Monsanto also recently started using the word "seed protectants" for pesticides.9

Do these chemicals "protect seeds"? You could argue that they do, but their main function is to kill insects and other plants. Yet it's much harder to associate a "seed protectant" with toxic pesticide exposure that can cause harm to human health, isn't it? Do not let them get away with it by adopting this ridiculous new verbiage.

Why Are We Being Fed by a War Chemical Company?

Monsanto, a war chemical company that has been sued over toxic pollution multiple times, and been found guilty of lying and covering up evidence of their wrong-doing in virtually every case, is now looking to buy another giant chemical company, move their headquarters overseas to avoid US taxes, change their name, and rename their toxic bug and weed killers into nicer sounding things like "seed and crop protectants."

At the end of the day, Monsanto is still just a chemical company that is now using many of the same war chemicals to grow our food. Why do we accept food from a poison expert? Toxins are rendered largely unnecessary using regenerative practices, which have also been shown to outperform chemical agriculture in terms of yield.

Monsanto's president and chief operating officer Brett Bergemann recently stated that:10 "We have the challenge of feeding 9.5 billion people by 2050. We need to meet that need in a sustainable way and we need to drive sustainable intensification of agriculture." And yet everything Monsanto specializes in drives us in the polar opposite of regenerative agriculture. If you still believe Monsanto is concerned with feeding billions of people healthy nutritious food, then you simply have yet to objectively and carefully review their scandalous history.

They design and patent seeds that withstand the very herbicides they make and sell. They promised weeds would not develop resistance, but 10 million acres of superweeds stand witness to that lie. This has led to more Roundup being used to keep up with the weeds. Now crops resistant to even more toxic chemicals are being brought to market. Everything Monsanto has ever done has been centered around toxic chemicals, and now they're trying to purchase the world's largest pesticide producer.

Toxins and health do not go together, and anyone with impartial and rational motivations will quickly realize that Monsanto is not in the health-food business. They're in the poison business, and with the bid to take over Syngenta, it should be crystal clear that Monsanto is not about to change their century-old track record anytime soon, no matter how many new words they invent to confuse you about the use of toxins on your food.

GMA Threatens to Take Away Vermont's Twinkies

On April 27, 2015, a judge ruled against the food industry, spearheaded by the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA), upholding Vermont's GMO labeling law. The law will go into effect on July 1, 2016. But the GMA isn't done fighting against democracy and freedom and just about everything else the United States claims to stand for.

It recently sent a letter to Vermont, threatening to remove snack foods from the state lest Vermont drop its GMO labeling law. According to Politico:11 “The Grocery Manufacturers Association is warning Vermont officials that the cost to food companies to comply with the state’s GMO labeling law could exceed their sales revenue, forcing many of them to leave.” Should such a threat actually go through, it would surely be a magnificent experiment to see how residents’ health might improve compared to other states where snacks containing GMO corn syrup, sugar from GMO sugar beets, and vegetable oils from GMO soy and cottonseed are still sold.

GMA Admits Playing Integral Role in 'Denying Americans the Right to Know' (DARK) Act

The GMA has also been a driving force behind Pompeo "DARK" Act (HR 1599, "The Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act")—a law that would not only preempt states' rights to create their own GMO food labeling laws, it also preempts any and all state and local regulation of GE crops, and weakens federal oversight.12 In short, it's a Monsanto dream come true, and a corporate fascism nightmare for the rest of us.

Not only would it nullify existing GMO regulation, it also prohibits future laws from even being considered! The Grocery Manufacturer's Association (GMA) admits playing an integral role in the creation of this draconian anti-democratic, anti-consumer bill.
In a June 17, 2015 email to the GMA board of directors, Pamela Bailey writes, in part:

"GMA knows that your companies are facing difficult decisions and monumental challenges implementing the Vermont mandatory GMO labeling law. Many of you have reached out to me and other GMA staff with your concerns. The federal legislation introduced in the House by Representatives Pompeo and Butterfield continues to gain very significant traction. Indeed, tomorrow there will be a hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and GMA has been integral to the process.

One of the witnesses is the Assistant Attorney General of Vermont, and he will be responding to several tough questions. One of our expert witnesses in the Vermont litigation, President and CEO of the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals, will testify on the impact the Vermont law will have on food supply chain. Next week the House Agricultural Committee is holding a hearing, and we expect the only witness at that hearing to be USDA." [Emphasis mine]

Not surprisingly, Monsanto is also on the board for the Supply Chain Management...13

Take Immediate Action: Tell Your Congressman to Vote NO on Pompeo's Bill, HR1599

As noted by the Center for Food Safety (CFS),14 the latest changes to Pompeo's bill "create an anti-democracy, anti-consumer, anti-environment mega-bill" that simply MUST be stopped. We need everyone to put pressure on your federal representatives, and demand they vote NO on the Pompeo bill. We need to do everything we possibly can to prevent it from passing, so please, take action now! Tell your representative to support consumer and state rights, and reject Rep. Pompeo's bill, H.R. 1599.

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  Section:  Articles - File Under:  Health  |  
 
How Conflicts of Interest Have Corrupted the CDC PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

Conflicts of interest have become more the rule than the occasional exception. Even the trusted US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) receives heavy funding from industry.

How this conflict of interest may have affected the organization’s decisions is the topic of an article1 in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), penned by the journal’s associate editor, Jeanne Lenzer, who notes:

“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) includes the following disclaimer with its recommendations:

“CDC, our planners, and our content experts wish to disclose they have no financial interests or other relationships with the manufacturers of commercial products... CDC does not accept commercial support.”

The CDC’s image as an independent watchdog over the public health has given it enormous prestige, and its recommendations are occasionally enforced by law.

Despite the agency’s disclaimer, the CDC does receive millions of dollars in industry gifts and funding, both directly and indirectly, and several recent CDC actions and recommendations have raised questions about the science it cites, the clinical guidelines it promotes, and the money it is taking.”

Is the CDC Protecting the Private Good Rather Than the Public?

When confronted about the discrepancy between the CDC’s public disclaimer and the reality that corporate funding is flowing into the organization, Tom Frieden, director of the CDC, responded, saying:

“Public-private partnerships allow CDC to do more, faster. The agency’s core values of accountability, respect, and integrity guide the way CDC spends the funds entrusted to it.

When possible conflicts of interests arise, we take a hard, close look to ensure that proper policies and guidelines are followed before accepting outside donations.”

In other words, the CDC believes, and “assures” you, it has the moral backbone to do the right thing, despite the fact that studies have revealed moral fiber tends to significantly deteriorate as soon as a funding source with an agenda starts doling out money.

Moreover, a 2009 investigation by the Office of the Inspector General concluded the CDC has “a systemic lack of oversight of the ethics program,” noting 97 percent of disclosure forms filed by the organization’s advisors were incomplete, and 13 percent of advisors didn’t file one.

Did Industry ‘Buy’ CDC Recommendation for Expanded Hepatitis C Screening?

External funding to the CDC in the form of industry “gifts” was authorized in 1983—nearly 40 years after the organization’s inception in 1946. After the passing of legislation in 1992 that encouraged relationships between the CDC and industry, the non-profit CDC Foundation was formed in 1995.

Last year, this Foundation received $12 million from private corporations, and the CDC itself received another $16 million in funding earmarked for special projects from companies, manufacturers, and various philanthropists.

“For example, in 2012, Genentech earmarked $600 000 in donations to the CDC Foundation for CDC’s efforts to promote expanded testing and treatment of viral hepatitis. Genentech and its parent company, Roche, manufacture test kits and treatments for hepatitis C,” Lenzer writes.

Since 2010, when the CDC and the CDC Foundation formed the Viral Hepatitis Action Coalition, manufacturers of hepatitis C tests and treatments have donated more than $26 million to the coalition.

In addition to Genentech, donors include: Abbott Laboratories, AbbVie, Gilead, Janssen, Merck, OraSure Technologies, Quest Diagnostics, and Siemens.

Two years later, in 2012, the CDC issued guidelines recommending expanded screening for hepatitis C for everyone born between 1945 and 1965, saying newer antiviral drugs can effectively halt disease progression.

However, “the science behind cohort screening has been challenged and is said to be ‘the subject of major debate.’ The scientific debate along with the price tags of the newer drugs (over $84 000 per treatment course for the new drug sofosbuvir), raise questions about CDC’s industry funding,” Lenzer writes.

CDC Recommendations Increasingly Skewed

The CDC and the CDC Foundation also received monies from Roche for the creation of the CDC’s “Take 3” flu campaign, again raising questions about the influence of funding on its drug recommendations.

Genentech, the manufacturer of the controversial and dangerous influenza drug Tamiflu, is a member of the Roche Group.

Step 3 in the CDC’s flu campaign advises you to “take antiviral medicine if your doctor prescribes it.” In an article titled, “Why CDC Recommends Influenza Antiviral Drugs,” the agency cites a number of studies supporting its recommendation, including a recent meta-analysis published in The Lancet.2

The problem with that, Lenzer points out, is that the CDC describes this study as “independent,” when in fact it was sponsored by Roche. Moreover, all of the four authors have financial ties to Roche, Genentech (both of which sell Tamiflu), or Gilead (which holds the patent).

In addition to that, the CDC did not include last year’s systematic review3 of 83 trials conducted by the Cochrane Collaboration, which is the “gold standard” for independent research analysis.

Was this analysis ignored because it concluded Tamiflu alleviates symptoms of the flu by less than 17 hours, has limited effect on your risk of pneumonia, no effect on adult hospital admissions, and causes nausea, vomiting, headaches, renal problems and psychiatric syndromes?

According to the Cochrane group: “The trade-off between benefits and harms should be borne in mind when making decisions to use oseltamivir [brand name Tamiflu] for treatment, prophylaxis, or stockpiling.”

Another issue is this: CDC director Tom Frieden has stated that taking Tamiflu might save your life, yet the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned Roche it cannot claim the drug reduces pneumonia or deaths as they’ve never produced any evidence for that claim.

But who needs scientific evidence when the CDC is making off-label claims for you? “Shannon Brownlee, senior vice president of the Lown Institute and former journalist covering the CDC, told

The BMJ
, “This looks like classic stealth marketing, in which industry puts their message in the mouths of a trusted third party, such as an academic or a professional organization,” Lenzer writes.

FDA:  The Poster Child for Industry Bias

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has also become notorious for its conflicts of interest and close ties to various industries, and there are many examples of this.

Last year, emails and letters between the FDA and Pfizer suggest the drug giant was given an inappropriate  amount of leverage to decide when and how to tell the public about the hazards associated with its veterinary drug roxarsone.4,5

FDA researchers found low levels of inorganic arsenic in the livers of chicken who consumed the drug. Correspondence between Heidi Chen, then attorney in Pfizer’s animal health division, and William Flynn, the FDA’s deputy director for science policy at the Center for Veterinary Medicine, reveal the agency allowed Pfizer to edit the wording of a press release about the roxarsone data, and more.

Government Must Act to Protect Scientific Integrity

Getting back to the CDC, it was created and has been relied upon as an independent agency without industry ties that might muddy the water in terms of the health and safety recommendations it issues. Now, it’s become apparent that not even the CDC can be counted on for unbiased science-based advice. So what, if anything, can be done to rectify the situation?

Considering the fact that CDC funding from industry was approved by the government, the answer, as noted by Jerome R Hoffman,6 methodologist and emeritus professor of medicine at UCLA, is to “get the government to reject this devil’s bargain, by changing the rules so this can no longer happen.” It’s simply unreasonable to believe that any organization will ignore its cash cows, and it’s equally naïve to believe that industry will continue donating money if the agency decides to do anything that even hints at cutting into industry profits.

For example, the NRA promptly withdrew its CDC funding when the agency began investigating gun violence.7 In summary, conflicts of interest endanger lives. People’s well-being become secondary to the corporate bottom line, and no organization or corporation is immune to the effects of conflicts of interest—not even the CDC. Even well-respected research universities like the University of Minnesota have fallen prey, relaxing research ethics to the point that research subjects die.8

Head of CDC Now Head of Merck Vaccines

The infamous revolving door between the government and the drug industry is another factor that has done an awful lot to destroy scientific integrity and government accountability. One classic example is Dr. Julie Gerberding, who headed up the CDC—which among other things is charged with overseeing vaccines—from 2002 to 2009 before becoming the president of Merck’s vaccine division, a position she currently holds today.

The influence her former high-level ties to the CDC wields is enormous, considering the fact that Merck makes 14 of the 17 pediatric vaccines recommended by the CDC, and 9 of the 10 recommended for adults. And while vaccine safety advocates are trying to rein in the number of vaccines given to babies, safety concerns keep falling on deaf ears. The vaccine industry is booming, and it's become quite clear that profit potential is the driving factor behind it. It is this type of reprehensible and inexcusable behavior that makes it an enormous challenge to change this seriously flawed paradigm.

Half of Published Research Likely to Be Completely False, Warns Editor-in-Chief of Major Medical Journal

Just as the CDC insists it has the ability to maintain its integrity awash in industry cash, corporations insist they have the integrity to stay on solid scientific ground when researching its own products. But, just as studies show the source of funding alters scientific conclusions, so research reveals that industry-funded research is riddled with flaws, shortcomings, and outright fraud. As reported by the Progressive Review:9,10

“... Dr. Richard Horton, the current editor-in-chief of the Lancet...recently published a statement11 declaring that a lot of published research is in fact unreliable at best, if not completely false. ‘The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness...’

Dr. Marcia Angell...makes her view of the subject quite plain: ‘It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of the New England Journal of Medicine’[Emphasis mine]

Omission of Data Often Protects Corporate Profits

Omission of data is another common tactic employed to skew the scientific consensus, and this is just as dangerous as publishing complete fabrications. For example, according to Dr. Lucija Tomljenovic,12,13 a post-doctoral fellow at the University of British Columbia (UBC) where she works in neurosciences and the Department of Medicine, many vaccine manufacturers and health authorities are actually well aware of dangers associated with vaccines, but have chosen to withhold this information from the public. She writes, in part:

“Deliberately concealing information from the parents for the sole purpose of getting them to comply with an ‘official’ vaccination schedule could thus be considered as a form of ethical violation or misconduct. Official documents obtained from the UK Department of Health (DH) and

the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization (JCVI) reveal that the British health authorities have been engaging in such practice for the last 30 years, apparently for the sole purpose of protecting the national vaccination program.”

Many industry-funded studies with negative findings simply never see the light of day, as suggested by a recent NEJM review14 looking at compliance rates with results reporting at ClinicalTrials.gov. The Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act (FDAAA) mandates timely reporting of results of applicable clinical trials to ClinicalTrials.gov, but only 13.4 percent of trials reported summary results within 12 months of completing the trial, and 45 percent of industry-funded trials were not required to report results. For comparison, only six percent of trials funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and nine percent of studies funded by other government or academic institutions were excluded from result reporting.

Doctors Also Share the Blame...

Bias is another major problem that has increasingly sullied the scientific community, and no one is immune—not even doctors, especially not when they’re receiving large sums of money from a drug company. According to “the most comprehensive accounting so far of the financial ties that some critics say have compromised medical care,” published last year, American doctors and teaching hospitals received a whopping $3.5 billion from drug and medical-device companies in the last five months of 2013 alone.15

A recent article16 in NEJM titled “Understanding Bias — The Case for Careful Study,” offers a discourse on bias, at the core of which you find financial conflicts of interest. But there are also a number of other hidden, largely subconscious conflicts within any given individual that can color his or her decision-making, such as how easy one treatment is versus another—one might require hours of work, while the other would allow the doctor some well-needed sleep.

 Either way, conflicts of interest do have an impact on the patient, and when the motive is selfish—be it to gain more money or sleep—that impact is likely to be detrimental. As noted in the NEJM article:

“Some 94 percent of physicians have relationships with industry, though these interactions most often involve activities such as receiving drug samples or food in the workplace... Physicians who attend symposia funded by pharmaceutical companies subsequently prescribe the featured drugs at a higher rate... Are any of these interactions, or efforts to curtail them, beneficial or harmful to patients? It depends on how you define harm. Consider pharmaceutical ‘gifting,’ a practice that smacks of bribery — which may be sufficient reason to prohibit it. But does it actually hurt patients? According to one influential commentary, it does...”

Doctors Urged to Stop Overtreating Patients

Yet another BMJ article17 urges doctors to stop overmedicating and overtreating patients, warning they’re doing more harm than good. As reported by BBC News18:

“Launching the Choosing Wisely campaign, experts are calling on medical organizations to identify five procedures each that should not be offered routinely or in some cases not at all. These might include: Pills for mild depression; Too many routine and unnecessary blood tests; Medicines for mildly raised blood pressure... [E]xperts say individuals should be encouraged to check whether procedures are definitely right for them. For example, patients are advised to ask: Do I really need this test or procedure?; Are there simpler options?; What happens if I do nothing?”

Overmedicating and overtreating is one result of excessive industry influence, although it’s certainly not the sole reason. From my perspective, it seems clear that more drugs, tests, and surgeries do not equate to better health. On the contrary, it raises the risks of side effects that may be as bad or worse than the original problem. It also raises the risk of fatal medical errors—a fate that befalls 440,000 Americans each year! As reported by Forbes19 in 2013:

“These people are not dying from the illnesses that caused them to seek hospital care in the first place. They are dying from mishaps that hospitals could have prevented. What do these errors look like? The sponge left inside the surgical patient, prompting weeks of mysterious, agonizing abdominal pain before the infection overcomes bodily functions. The medication injected into a baby’s IV at a dose calculated for a 200 pound man. The excruciating infection from contaminated equipment used at the bedside. Sadly, over a thousand people a day are dying from these kinds of mistakes.”

Drug Ads May Lose Fine Print Details About Side Effects

Have you ever asked your doctor if a certain drug was right for you—as instructed by virtually every drug ad you see on TV? Clearly, this ploy works, or the drug industry wouldn’t spend $4.53 billion a year on direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising.20 In the midst of all the faux science backing up recommendations to use drugs of all kinds, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is considering simplifying DTC print ads by making the manufacturers summarize potential side effects in layman’s terms—and omitting certain drug details altogether. Cutting the laundry list of side effects from radio and TV ads is also under consideration, ostensibly to improve your understanding of the drug’s risks.

According to Forbes:21

“‘In general, FDA believes that exhaustive lists that include even minor risks detract from, and make it difficult for, consumers to comprehend and retain information about the more important risks,’ the FDA says in its draft guidance on the proposed changes to print ads. The agency cites research showing that people can only process a limited amount of information offered in DTC drug ads. Furthermore, the FDA found, virtually no one reads even half of the fine print in drug ads, and of those who do, 55 percent say it’s hard to understand. The agency also cites several studies showing that when drug risks are described in laymen’s terms instead of medical jargon comprehension skyrockets.”

It’s difficult to discern whether a change like this might actually change how consumers “hear” or “see” the benefit versus risk potential of any given drug. In my view, the most reasonable approach would be to dramatically reduce or ban DTC drug ads altogether, as they do absolutely nothing to improve public health.  On the contrary, luring people into thinking they might benefit from a drug is a recipe for disaster, as it reinforces the fallacy that there’s a magic pill for every ill, when in fact most ailments can be effectively prevented or addressed with inexpensive lifestyle changes that have no detrimental side effects whatsoever.

History is replete with examples of drugs causing far more harm than good. Vioxx is one classic example. It killed about 60,000 people before being withdrawn from the market. Most recently, Takeda Pharmaceutical has agreed to pay $2.4 billion to settle some 9,000 lawsuits from patients who developed bladder cancer from the drug22--a side effect the company concealed, according to plaintiff attorneys. Despite such risks, Actos is still sold in the US and other countries.

Hopefully, you will resolve to take control of your health and avoid becoming a statistic of a conflict-of-interest-driven system that places greater value on share holders than patients. Addressing your diet is an obvious place to start, along with a regular exercise program.

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  Section:  Articles - File Under:  Health  |  
 
Studies on Hydration Suggest Dehydrated Drivers May Pose Hazard on the Road, and Majority of Children Don’t Drink Enough Water PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

Drinking pure water every day is a key component of optimal health. Unfortunately, many make the mistake of forgoing water for other types of fluids, most of which have added ingredients that will not do your health any favors.

Kids are particularly prone to drinking sweet drinks like soda and fruit juice instead of plain water, and many teens tend to reach for sports and energy drinks instead.

According to a recent Harvard study,1,2,3 more than half of American children are dehydrated, which can have repercussions for their health and academic performance.

About one-quarter of children in the US do not drink water on a daily basis. Overall, boys were more than 75 percent more likely to be inadequately hydrated than girls.

This dovetails with previous studies4 showing that boys drink more sugary beverages than girls. According to one 2011 analysis, about 70 percent of boys aged 2-19 drink sugary beverages daily. As noted by lead author Erica Kenney:5

“These findings are significant because they highlight a potential health issue that has not been given a whole lot of attention in the past.

Even though for most of these kids this is not an immediate, dramatic health threat, this is an issue that could really be reducing quality of life and well-being for many, many children and youth.”

Your Body Needs Water for Proper Functioning

Your body is comprised of about 65 percent water, which is needed for a number of physiological processes and biochemical reactions, including but not limited to:

  • Blood circulation
  • Metabolism
  • Regulation of body temperature
  • Waste removal and detoxification

Once your body has lost between one to two percent of its total water content, it will signal its needs by making you feel thirsty. Using thirst as a guide to how much water you need to drink is one obvious way to ensure your individual needs are met, day-by-day.

However, by the time your thirst mechanism actually kicks in, you’re already in the early stages of dehydration, so you don’t want to ignore the initial sensations of thirst.

Moreover, the thirst mechanism tends to be underdeveloped in children, making them more vulnerable to dehydration. The elderly are also at heightened risk.

Hunger—sugar cravings in particular—can also be a sign that your body is crying for water, so as noted in the featured video, when you feel hungry, drink a glass of water first.

So, in addition to thirst, which is an obvious signal, other signals indicating you need to drink more water include:6,7

Fatigue and/or dizzinessMood swings
Foggy thinking and poor concentrationChills
Muscle crampsBack or joint ache
Dull, dry skin and/or pronounced wrinklesConstipation
Infrequent urination; dark, concentrated urineHeadache
Bad breathSugar cravings

Severe dehydration can be life threatening, but even mild dehydration can cause problems ranging from headaches and irritability to impaired cognition. It can also affect your sports performance, as noted in a recent CNN report:8

“Even being slightly dehydrated affects your ability to put effort into your workout. ‘A two percent dehydration level in your body causes a 10 percent decrease in athletic performance,’ says [sports dietitian Amy] Goodson.

"‘And the more dehydrated you become, the worse performance gets.’ Measured by ‘perceived exertion,’ how hard you feel you're exercising, you might be working at a 6 but you feel like you are working at an 8, says Goodson.”

The Color of Your Urine Is an Important Hydration Marker

The oft-repeated guideline is to drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day, but considering the fact that your water needs can vary significantly from day to day depending on factors such as your activity level and weather conditions, this suggestion may be inadequate.

In reality, it’s virtually impossible to determine a general guideline that will apply to everyone, all the time. As noted in the video above, the Institute of Medicine recommends a much higher average water intake, suggesting women drink 2.7 liters or 91 ounces of water per day, and men 3.7 liters, or 125 ounces.

The featured study9 used urine concentration to evaluate hydration status, and looking at the color of your urine is perhaps one of the best ways to track your individual hydration status from day to day.

Concentrated, dark-colored urine is a sign that your kidneys are retaining fluids to maintain your bodily functions, and is a good indication that you need more water. Ideally, you’ll want to drink enough water to turn your urine a light-colored yellow.

Also please realize that riboflavin (vitamin B2; also found in most multi-vitamins) will turn your urine a bright, almost fluorescent yellow. So if you’re taking supplements containing B2, it may be more difficult to judge your water needs by the color of your urine.

Frequency of urination can also be used to judge your water intake. A healthy person urinates on average about seven or eight times a day. If your urine is scant or if you haven’t urinated in several hours, that too is an indication that you’re not drinking enough.

Being Dehydrated May Be as Dangerous as Being Drunk When Driving

When you’re dehydrated, you’re more prone to irritability and fatigue. Your cognitive functions, including your ability to concentrate also take a hit, and this can have serious ramifications if you’re behind the wheel. According to a recent study published in the journal Physiology and Behavior,10 dehydrated drivers made twice the amount of errors during a two-hour drive compared to hydrated drivers. Remarkably, this is similar to driving drunk!

As reported by CNN:11 “Since often people purposely avoid drinking prior to a long road trip to prevent bathroom stops, dehydration could increase the risk of traffic accidents.” For these tests, hydrated drivers drank 200ml every hour, compared to dehydrated drivers who received only 25ml of water an hour. As reported by The Daily Mail:12

“During the normal hydration test, there were 47 driving errors. That number rose to 101 when the men were dehydrated - the same mistake rate as that when drivers were either sleep deprived or at the drink-drive limit. The researchers...think dehydration leads to reduced brain activity as well as a drop in alertness and short-term memory...The researchers wrote...'Body water losses have been shown to impair performance in a variety of tests of both physical and mental performance... 'The level of dehydration induced in the present study was mild and could easily be reproduced by individuals with limited access to fluid over the course of a busy working day.'”

Replacing All Other Beverages with Pure Water Is a Major Step Toward Health

It’s important to recognize that your body loses water throughout each day, even when you’re not sweating, and that you need to constantly replenish this fluid loss. While soda, fruit juices, sports drinks, energy drinks, and other beverages typically contain a fair amount of water, they are poor substitutes for pure water, and generally do not count toward this requirement.

Soda and energy drinks, for example, are high in caffeine, which acts as a diuretic that will actually dehydrate you, so they’re a terrible choice for quenching your thirst. In fact, have you noticed that you tend to get thirstier the more soda you drink? The sugar is addictive, which contributes to this phenomenon, but dehydration also plays a role.

Worse yet, sodas, fruit juices, sports drinks, and other sweetened beverages typically contain processed fructose, which is a primary driver of obesity and metabolic dysfunction. Just one can of soda per day can add as much as 15 pounds to your weight over the course of a single year.

One soda per day also increases your risk of diabetes by 85 percent, and frequent soda drinkers have higher cancer risk. So to stay hydrated, drinking pure water is key. This is true when exercising as well. Many still believe that sports drinks are the best alternative to replenish lost fluids and electrolytes when working up a sweat, but that’s simply not true.

Why Sports Drinks Are Best Avoided

The majority of people believe that sports drinks like Gatorade are far better to drink than water when you’re dehydrated because of electrolyte replacement. Avoid this common mistake, as nothing could be further from the truth. More important than the electrolytes are sugar, and most sports drinks contain two-thirds or even more sugar than sodas, typically in the form of high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS).

Many also contain artificial flavors and food coloring, none of which contribute to optimal health. Fructose is primarily metabolized by your liver, because that is the only organ that has the transporter for it and is the main cause of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). In your liver, fructose is metabolized much like alcohol, causing mitochondrial and metabolic dysfunction in the same way as ethanol and other toxins. And just like alcohol, your body turns fructose directly into fat—hardly what you need after a good workout.

If your sports drink is low-calorie and sugar-free, it likely contains artificial sweeteners, which may be even worse for you than fructose. In addition to that, consuming sugar after exercise will negatively affect your insulin sensitivity—and your human growth hormone (HGH) production if you’re doing high intensity exercise. Most sports drinks also contain high amounts of sodium (processed salt), which is meant to replenish the electrolytes you lose while sweating.

It is very easy and inexpensive to address the electrolyte replacement issue simply by adding a small amount of natural, unprocessed salt, such as Himalayan salt, to your water. Contrary to processed salt, this natural salt contains 84 different minerals and trace minerals that your body needs for optimal function. Another excellent option when you’re sweating profusely is coconut water.

It’s one of the highest sources of electrolytes known to man. Some remote areas of the world even use coconut juice intravenously, short-term, to help hydrate critically ill patients and in emergency situations. Also, fresh fruits are full of potassium and other important minerals that help address the missing electrolytes one looses in sweat. Just remember to eat the whole fruit, not fruit juices.

Both Soda and Fruit Juice Promote Poor Health

While many have become savvy about the health hazards of soda, many are still under the mistaken belief that fruit juice is a healthy beverage. This is a dangerous misconception fueling rising rates of weight gain, obesity, fatty liver disease, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes in the United States and other developed nations—especially among children. In fact, you are doing your body no favor whatsoever by swapping soda for fruit juice, and as a concise infographic posted by Discovery pointed out, fruit drinks can sometimes be worse for your health than soda.

One eight-ounce glass of orange juice has about eight full teaspoons of sugar, and at least 50 percent of that sugar is fructose. That's almost as much as a can of soda, which contains approximately 10 teaspoons of sugar. Fruit drinks, on the other hand, will likely contain high-fructose corn syrup, just as soda does. In fact, soda giants like Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Dr. Pepper are actually the parent companies to most sugary drinks on the market, and that includes fruit juices.

If you and your family drink soft drinks and/or fruit juice regularly, one of the best things you can do for your overall health is to switch to clean fresh water. Fortunately, stopping soda is one of the easiest health habits to make for most people. But, if for any reason you are having difficulty stopping, please consider using Turbo Tapping to stop your sugar addiction and improve your health.

Opt for Structured Spring Water or Filtered Tap Water Over Bottled Water

While drinking water will help to optimally hydrate you, it is wise to drink toxin-free water, and the more unfiltered water you drink, the more pollutants you’re adding back in. Most tap water contains an array of harmful contaminants, including not only chlorine, but also disinfection byproducts, heavy metals, and pharmaceutical drugs. Federal scientists have reported13 finding traces of 18 unregulated contaminants in one-third of the water samples collected from 25 municipal utilities across the US, including perfluorinated compounds like PFOA. So besides making sure you’re drinking enough, another very important consideration is the type of water you drink.

Bottled water may be convenient, but has a number of significant drawbacks. First of all, drinking from plastic water bottles can pose health risks from industrial chemicals like bisphenol-A, bisphenol-S (BPA/BPS) and phthalates, which leach from the plastic. Bottled water also costs about 1,900 times the price of regular tap water, and 40 percent of bottled water is simply tap water that may not have received any additional filtering treatment whatsoever...

Moreover, the likelihood of bottled water being contaminated is far higher than with your tap water. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires large public water supplies to test for contaminants several times a day, but the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires private bottlers to test for contaminants only once a week, once a year, or once every four years, depending on the contaminant.

One independent test14 performed by the Environmental Working Group (EWG) in 2011 revealed 38 low-level contaminants in bottled water. Each of the 10 tested brands contained an average of eight chemicals. Disinfection byproducts (DBPs), caffeine, Tylenol, nitrate, industrial chemicals, arsenic, and bacteria were all detected. Last but not least, plastic bottles also cause enormous environmental problems because of the sheer volume of plastic waste they create.

The answer to all these health and environmental issues is to minimize or eliminate your use of plastic water bottles. The most economical and environmentally sound choice you can make is to purchase and install a water filter for your home. And, in lieu of plastic bottles, use reusable glass water bottles instead, which have a much smaller ecological footprint.

The very best water, however, comes from a natural gravity-fed spring. FindaSpring.com15 is an excellent resource for finding one nearby your home. Not only does it tend to be naturally filtered and pH balanced, it’s also “alive” or “structured,” which is believed to have certain health benefits beyond mere hydration. I’ve previously interviewed Dr. Gerald Pollack on this subject. His book, The Fourth Phase of Water: Beyond Solid, Liquid, and Vapor, clearly explains the theory of the fourth phase of water, which is truly ground-breaking.

The fourth phase of water is living water. It’s referred to as EZ water—EZ standing for “exclusion zone”—which has a negative charge. This water can hold energy, much like a battery, and can deliver energy too. This is the kind of water your cells contain; even your extracellular tissues are filled with EZ water, which is why he believes it’s so important to drink structured water for optimal health. I drink vortexed water nearly exclusively as I became a big fan of Viktor Schauberger, who did much pioneering work on vortexing about a century ago. Dr. Pollack confirms that by creating a vortex in a glass of water, you’re putting more energy into it, thereby increasing EZ.

For Optimal Health, You Need to Drink Pure Water Every Day

There’s no doubt that you need pure water for optimal health. Simply swapping out all the sweetened, bottled beverages for pure water can go a long way toward improving your health, as virtually all of the biochemical processes in your body need water. The amount, however, is something you need to fine tune based on your individual circumstances.

Remember to listen to your body. Thirst is an obvious signal that it’s time to replenish your fluids. Fatigue and moodiness can also indicate you need to drink more water. Probably the best way to gauge your water needs however, is to observe the color of your urine, and how frequently you urinate. On average, a healthy number of bathroom visits is around seven or eight per day, and you want the color of your urine to be a light, pale yellow.

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Top Summer Foods for Health PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), yin and yang refer to opposite elements or forces in nature, which, when balanced, promote harmony. Qi is a type of universal energy, and both yin and yang are manifestations of Qi, each with its own attributes.

Where yin tends to manifest cold, moist, cooling, and dark qualities, yang manifests as hot, dry, warming, and bright. The summer months, with their hot temperatures and bright sun, is decidedly yang.

Specifically, TCM describes summer as the season of fire, which is a symbol of the greatest yang. In order to keep harmony, it’s important to balance the strong yang energies with those of yin – and this is possible to do via your diet.

The summertime is a perfect opportunity to focus your diet on yin foods, which are by nature cooling or cold. When you eat yin foods in the summer, it helps you avoid “summerheat,” which is a condition linked to an overabundance of yang that causes a queasy, fatigued, and “blah” feeling when it’s hot outside.1

Top ‘Yin’ Summer Foods to Enjoy

Cooling foods tend to be in-season with abundance during the summer months. Most “green” foods, including vegetables and fruits, qualify, although some are better than others. To give your body a refreshing break from summer’s yang, focus on eating these cooling “yin” foods.

1. Sprouts

Sprouts may be small, but they are packed with nutrition, including vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and enzymes that help protect against free radical damage.

They’re an inherently cooling food and are perfect for adding to salads, either in addition to or in lieu of salad greens, and sandwiches and are especially tasty in combination with fresh avocado. You can also add them to your vegetable juice or smoothies.

Better still, growing your own sprouts is quite easy, and you don't need a whole lot of space either; they can even be grown indoors. Two of my personal favorites are sunflower seed and pea shoots—both of which are typically about 30 times more nutritious than organic vegetables.

They're also among the highest in protein. In addition, sunflower seeds contain healthy fats, essential fatty acids, and fiber—all of which are important for optimal health.

Mung beans are another common sprout popular to TCM; they’re a good source of protein, fiber, vitamin C, and vitamin A.

I used Ball jars when I first started sprouting seeds about 25 years ago, but I've since switched over to growing them in potting soil. With Ball jars you need to rinse them several times a day to prevent mold growth and it is a hassle to have them draining in the sink, taking up space.

Moreover, you need dozens of jars to produce the same amount of sprouts as just one flat tray. I didn't have the time or patience for that, and you may not either. The choice is yours, though. You can easily grow sprouts and shoots with or without soil.

My Sprout Doctor Starter Kit comes with what I consider to be three of the best sprouts to grow – sunflower shoots, broccoli sprouts, and pea shoots. When grown in soil, you can harvest your sprouts in about a week, and a pound of seeds will probably produce over 10 pounds of sprouts.

Sunflower shoots will give you the most volume for your effort and, in my opinion, have the best taste. In one 10x10” tray, you can harvest between one and two pounds of sunflower sprouts, which will last you about three days.

You can store them in the fridge for about a week. Broccoli sprouts look and taste similar to alfalfa sprouts, which most people like. I've partnered with a company in a small town in Vermont that develops, breeds, and grows their own seeds, and are industry leaders in seed safety for sprouts and shoots.

All of my seeds are non-GMO, certified organic, and packed with nutrition. My starter kit makes it easy to grow your own sprouts in the comfort of your home, whenever you want. It provides everything you need, so all you have to do is grow and enjoy your sprouts.

2. Watermelon (and Other Melons)

Watermelon is more than 91 percent water.2 This means that eating watermelon on a hot summer day is a tasty way to help you stay hydrated and avoid dehydration. Watermelon is also an excellent source of lycopene, with upwards of 6,500 micrograms in less than half a cup.

Lycopene's antioxidant activity has long been suggested to be more powerful than that of other carotenoids, such as beta-carotene. In one study, after controlling for other stroke risk factors, such as older age and diabetes, they found that men with the highest blood levels of lycopene were 55 percent less likely to have a stroke than those with the lowest.3

Watermelon also contains citrulline, which in your body is converted into L-arginine, which is a precursor to nitric oxide. Nitric oxide may help your vessels stay relaxed and open for blood flow, which is one reason why it may help lower blood pressure.

What else is watermelon good for? It’s rich in anti-inflammatory substances. For instance, watermelon contains the anti-inflammatory antioxidant lycopene as well as cucurbitacin E, or tripterpenoid.

This blocks the activity of the pain and inflammation-causing enzyme cyclooxygenase – the same enzyme blocked by COX-2 inhibitors, which include most NSAID drugs like aspirin and ibuprofen.

While being very low in calories (about 46 calories in a cup) watermelon also contains an impressive variety of other important nutrients in which many Americans are lacking, including:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B6
  • Potassium
  • Vitamin A
  • Magnesium

It’s not only watermelon that’s beneficial to consume in the summer – other melons, like cantaloupe, muskmelon, and honeydew, are also beneficial.

Cantaloupes, for instance, provide an excellent source of antioxidants, like vitamin C and vitamin A (in the form of carotenoids). They also contain important nutrients like potassium, folate, copper, B vitamins, vitamin K, magnesium, and fiber.

If you eat the seeds (yes, they're edible), you'll also get beneficial plant-based omega-3 fat in the form of alpha-linolenic acid. With relatively few calories (about 54 per cup) and low fructose (2.8 grams in one-eighth of a medium melon), this is one fruit you can feel good about eating.

3. Cucumbers

Like watermelon, cucumbers are made up of mostly (95 percent) water, making them an ideal hydrating and cooling food. Cucumbers may also help to “cool” the inflammatory response in your body, according to raw-food advocate David Wolfe.

Animal studies also suggest that cucumber extract helps reduce unwanted inflammation, in part by inhibiting the activity of pro-inflammatory enzymes (including cyclo-oxygenase 2, or COX-2).4

Cucumbers also contain numerous antioxidants, including the well-known vitamin C and beta-carotene. They also contain antioxidant flavonoids, such as quercetin, apigenin, luteolin, and kaempferol,5 which provide additional benefits.

For instance, quercetin is an antioxidant that many believe prevents histamine release—making quercetin-rich foods “natural antihistamines.” Kaempferol, meanwhile, may help fight cancer and lower your risk of chronic diseases including heart disease.

Cucumbers also contain multiple B vitamins, including vitamin B1, vitamin B5, and vitamin B7 (biotin). B vitamins are known to help ease feelings of anxiety and buffer some of the damaging effects of stress.

4. Tomatoes

There’s good reason to regularly include tomatoes, another cooling food, in your diet, as they are rich in flavonoids and other phytochemicals that have anti-carcinogenic and other healthy properties.

They’re also an excellent source of lutein, zeaxanthin, and vitamin C (which is most concentrated in the jelly-like substance that surrounds the seeds) as well as vitamins A, E and B-complex vitamins, potassium, manganese, and phosphorus. Other lesser-known phytonutrients found in tomatoes include:

  • Flavonols: rutin, kaempferol, and quercetin
  • Flavonones: naringenin and chalconaringenin
  • Hydroxycinnamic acids: caffeic acid, ferulic acid, and coumaric acid
  • Glycosides: esculeoside A
  • Fatty acid derivatives: 9-oxo-octadecadienoic acid

Tomatoes are also a particularly concentrated source of lycopene. In addition to lowering your risk of stroke, lycopene from tomatoes (including unsweetened organic tomato sauce) has also been shown to be helpful in treating prostate cancer. If you eat tomatoes, choose organic varieties. One study found growing tomatoes according to organic standards results in dramatically elevated phenols content compared to tomatoes grown conventionally, using agricultural chemicals.

The organic tomatoes were found to contain 55 percent more vitamin C and 139 percent more total phenolic content at the stage of commercial maturity compared to the conventionally grown tomatoes.6

5. Rhubarb

Rhubarb is high in fiber, which is why it’s long been used in TCM for soothing stomach ailments and relieving constipation. A one-cup serving of rhubarb provides high levels of vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin A, and calcium, along with folate, riboflavin, niacin, B vitamins, and pantothenic acid. Rhubarb also provides important minerals, including manganese, iron, potassium, and phosphorus.

Due to its sour flavor, rhubarb is often found in recipes alongside sugar and other sweeteners. But a healthier (and far more cooling) way to consume it is by juicing raw right into your fresh vegetable juice. Remember, only the stalks can be eaten; rhubarb leaves are poisonous due to high levels of oxalic acid.

6. Dandelion Leaves

Dandelion leaves contain vitamins A, C, and K, along with calcium, iron, manganese, and potassium. They also have antioxidant properties and contain bitter crystalline compounds called taraxacin and taracerin, along with inulin and levulin, compounds thought to explain some of its therapeutic properties. Dandelion leaves can be used in salads, soups, juiced, cooked the same way as spinach, or dried (with flowers) to make dandelion tea (try it iced in the summer!). Dandelions offer you a wealth of nutrition; they contain:

One of the richest sources of beta carotene of all herbs (10,161 IUs per 100g, which is 338 percent of the RDA) Numerous flavonoids, including FOUR times the beta carotene of broccoli; also lutein, cryptoxanthin, and zeaxanthinOne of the HIGHEST herbal sources of vitamin K1, providing 650 percent of the RDA
Vitamins, including folic acid, riboflavin, pyroxidine, niacin, and vitamins E and C Great source of minerals, including magnesium, calcium, potassium, manganese, and ironLeaves rich in dietary fiber, as well as a good laxative

7. Citrus Fruits

Oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and limes are all beneficial to add to your summer diet. They’re rich in fiber and vitamin C and also contain additional antioxidants known as flavonoids that may play a beneficial role in fighting heart disease, cancer, and inflammation. As noted in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry:7

“The anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of Citrus flavonoids can play a key role in their activity against several degenerative diseases and particularly brain diseases.”

Citrus fruits are simple to add to your diet; they can be incorporated into vegetable juice, used in salad dressings, squeezed over veggies, or used to make lemon/lime water, for starters. You can, of course, also peel and eat them (oranges and grapefruits), in moderation.

8. Bananas

Bananas contain dopamine, a natural reward chemical that boosts your mood. They're also rich in B vitamins, including vitamin B6, which help soothe your nervous system, and magnesium, another nutrient associated with positive mood. In addition, bananas are a good source of fiber, vitamin A, and antioxidants. They also contain fructooligosaccharides (FOS), which are a type of prebiotics that help nourish beneficial bacteria in your body while enhancing your ability to absorb calcium. Nutritionist Laura Flores told Live Science:8

"Bananas are high in antioxidants, which can provide protection from free radicals, which we come into contact with every day… Bananas are known to reduce swelling, protect against developing type-2 diabetes, aid in weight loss, strengthen the nervous system and help with production of white blood cells, all due to the high level of vitamin B6 that bananas contain."

9. Watercress

Last but not least, watercress is another cooling vegetable that’s perfect for a hot summer day. It may actually be the most nutrient-dense vegetable out there, scoring higher on nutrient density scores than both broccoli and sunflower sprouts. Based on 17 nutrients— including potassium, fiber, protein, calcium, iron, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, zinc, and vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D, E, and K— watercress scored a perfect 100 in a study titled, "Defining Powerhouse Fruits and Vegetables: A Nutrient Density Approach."9

Watercress, which is a close cousin to mustard greens cabbage and arugula, can be eaten as a salad green, steamed as a vegetable, added to soups and sandwiches, or, my favorite, sprouted. This plant has such a strong history of healing prowess that Hippocrates is said to have located the first hospital on the island of Kos close to a stream so that fresh watercress could be harvested for patients (watercress grows in water). Greek soldiers also reportedly ate it as a health tonic prior to going into battle.10

In a more recent study, people who ate about 1.5 cups of fresh watercress daily for eight weeks had a 10 percent reduction in triglyceride levels and a significant increase in lutein and beta-carotene, by 100 percent and 33 percent, respectively.11 Further, the watercress diet lead to significant reductions in DNA damage to blood cells, with researchers concluding “consumption of watercress can be linked to a reduced risk of cancer via decreased damage to DNA and possible modulation of antioxidant status by increasing carotenoid concentrations.”

Melons Should Be Eaten Alone and Other Tips for Fruit Consumption


Download Interview Transcript

While melons are a beneficial cooling fruit for summer, they’re best off eaten alone. In 2013, I interviewed Dr. Wayne Pickering, a naturopathic physician, on the principles of food combining, and this is one important tip he taught me. Improper food combining is one of the primary factors that cause gas, flatulence, heartburn, and upset stomach. What's worse, poor digestion can also contribute to malnutrition, even if you think you're eating a decent diet. You can learn the details in our interview, but one of the most basic rules to remember is as follows: "Eat melon alone, or leave it alone, or your stomach will moan."

In short, melon does not digest well with other foods and will frequently cause problems unless you eat it alone. So feel free to enjoy melon, but this is best done on an empty stomach (and resist the urge to combine your cantaloupe with yogurt or prosciutto). In addition, I recommend you consume melon and the other fruits on this list in moderation due to their fructose content. While some of these, like cantaloupe, are relatively low-fructose fruits (less than three grams in one-eighth of a melon), your grams can quickly add up if you consume fructose from other sources as well.

Bananas should certainly be eaten only in moderation, as one banana contains about 7.5 grams of fructose. I recommend keeping your total fructose intake below 25 grams of fructose per day if you're in good health and below 15 grams a day if you're overweight or have high blood pressure or diabetes. Finally, remember that variety is key. There are many more beneficial summer foods that are not listed here. If none on the list strike your fancy, other cooling foods often recommended by TCM for the summer months include:12

Spinach Summer squash Lettuce and most greens
Cabbage Bok choy Celery
Mint Asparagus Cilantro
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  Section:  Articles - File Under:  Health  |  
 
Anti-Cancer Benefits of Avocado PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

Avocados are one of the healthiest foods you can eat. Personally, I eat one almost every day. If you're an avocado fan, which 60 percent of Americans claim to be,1 you're probably aware that they're an excellent source of healthy monounsaturated fat, vitamins and antioxidants.

What you may not know, however, is that these super fruits also have cancer-fighting properties. In one of the latest studies, avocatin B, a type of fat found in avocados, was found to combat acute myeloid leukemia (AML), which is a particularly rare and deadly form of cancer.

Avocado Fat May Kill Cancer Stem Cells

The study, published in Cancer Research, revealed that avocatin B targets leukemia stem cells, which are responsible for causing most cases of AML recurrence.2

In those over 65, the disease is often deadly within five years, and there are few effective treatment options.3 The avocado fat was able to wipe out the leukemia stem cells while leaving healthy cells unharmed.

The researchers are working on developing a leukemia drug derived from avocatin B, however you can also get cancer-fighting agents just by eating avocados – especially if you peel them properly.

Avocados are rich in cancer-fighting carotenoids, which are most plentiful in the dark-green portion of the flesh that's closest to the skin. In 2010, the California Avocado Commission issued guidelines for getting the most out of your avocado by peeling it the right way.4

"California-grown avocados contain 11 carotenoids. According to USDA's Agricultural Research Service, avocados contain a complex package of phytonutrients, including carotenoids that may provide numerous health benefits.

Carotenoids appear to protect humans against certain cancers, heart disease and age-related macular degeneration. The UCLA research showed that in California avocados, the greatest concentration of beneficial carotenoids is in the dark green fruit of the avocado closest to the peel."

To preserve the area with the greatest concentration of antioxidants, you basically want to peel the avocado with your hands, as you would a banana:

  • First, cut the avocado length-wise, around the seed
  • Holding each half, twist them in the opposite directions to separate them from the seed
  • Remove the seed
  • Cut each half, lengthwise
  • Next, using your thumb and index finger, simply peel the skin off each piece

An Avocado a Day May Keep Bad Cholesterol Away

Eating healthy fats, including those in avocado, is important for protecting your heart health and optimizing your cholesterol levels.

Among overweight and obese Americans, those who consumed a moderate-fat diet with one avocado per day had lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or "bad") cholesterol levels (by 13.5 mg/dL) compared to those eating an average American diet.5

Small dense LDL cholesterol was "especially" lowered, which is an important distinction. Large LDL particles are not harmful. Only small dense LDL particles can potentially be a problem, as they can squeeze through the lining of your arteries. If they oxidize, they can cause damage and inflammation.

The fact that eating an avocado a day helps lower this subset of potentially dangerous cholesterol particles is good reason to add it to your diet… In addition, past research has shown avocados might help improve lipid profiles, both in healthy individuals and in those with mild hypercholesterolemia (elevated cholesterol levels).

Healthy individuals saw a 16 percent decrease in total cholesterol level following a one-week-long diet high in monounsaturated fat from avocados.

In those with elevated cholesterol levels, the avocado diet resulted in a 17 percent decrease of serum total cholesterol, and a 22 percent decrease of both LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, along with an 11 percent increase of the so-called "good" HDL cholesterol.6

One study even found that eating one-half of a medium avocado with a hamburger significantly inhibited the production of the inflammatory compound Interleukin-6 (IL-6), compared to eating a burger without fresh avocado.7 According to lead author David Heber, MD, PhD, the findings offer "promising clues" about avocado's ability to benefit vascular function and heart health.

Avocados Might Help You Lose Weight and Absorb Nutrients

If the cancer-preventive and heart-healthy properties of avocado haven't convinced you that this is one superfood worth eating, maybe this will: according to research published in the Nutrition Journal, eating just one-half of a fresh avocado with lunch may satiate you if you're overweight, which will help prevent unnecessary snacking later.8

Those who ate half an avocado with their standard lunch reported being 40 percent less hungry three hours after their meal and 28 percent less hungry at the five-hour mark compared to those who did not eat avocado for lunch. The study also found that avocados appear helpful for regulating blood sugar

The monounsaturated fat in avocados is a type your body can easily burn for energy, and because they are so rich in healthy fats, avocados help your body absorb fat-soluble nutrients from other foods.

One study published in The Journal of Nutrition found that consuming a whole fresh avocado with either an orange-colored tomato sauce or raw carrots significantly enhanced absorption of the carotenoids and conversion of them into an active form of vitamin A.9

A 2005 study similarly found that adding avocado to salad allowed the volunteers to absorb three to five times more carotenoid antioxidant molecules, which help protect your body against free radical damage.10

Avocados Contain Nutrients Many Americans Are Lacking

Avocados provide close to 20 essential health-boosting nutrients, including potassium, vitamin E, B vitamins, and folic acid. Despite the fact that potassium is available in many foods, especially fruits and vegetables, only 2 percent of US adults get the recommended daily amount.11

It plays an important role in heart function, skeletal health, digestion, and muscular function, and is essential for the proper function of all cells, tissues, and organs in your body.12

Further, consuming enough potassium-rich food is important because this nutrient helps offset the hypertensive effects of sodium. Imbalance in your sodium-potassium ratio can not only lead to hypertension (high blood pressure) but may also contribute to a number of other diseases, including heart disease and stroke.

About 2.5 avocados provide the daily-recommended amount of about 4,700 milligrams (mg) of potassium a day. Not to mention, an average avocado contains about 40 mg of magnesium, which is about 10 percent of the recommended daily value.

Magnesium is a mineral used by every organ in your body, especially your heart, muscles, and kidneys. By some estimates, up to 80 percent of Americans are not getting enough magnesium and may be deficient. If you suffer from unexplained fatigue or weakness, abnormal heart rhythms, or even muscle spasms and eye twitches, low levels of magnesium could be to blame.

Better still, avocados are one of few foods that contain significant levels of both vitamins C and E.13 One study also found that a combination of vitamin C and E helped to slow plaque build-up, which could help prevent a heart attack or stroke.14

Avocados are even high in fiber, with about 4.6 grams in half an avocado. Fiber plays an essential role in your digestive, heart, and skin health, and may improve blood sugar control, weight management, and more, so when you eat avocados you're really providing your body with a comprehensive package of nutrition.

Embed this infographic on your website:

Click on the code area and press CTRL + C (for Windows) / CMD + C (for Macintosh) to copy the code.

Avocado Super Smoothie Recipe – Delicious!

You've surely tried guacamole and probably avocado on salads and sandwiches… but there are many more ways to enjoy avocados. One of my favorite ways is to blend one-third of an avocado into 12 ounces of water with my Vegan or Pure Power Protein and shredded coconut, along with my organic greens mix and my organic psyllium. You can also try avocado:

  • As a fat replacement in baking. Simply replace the fat called for (such as oil, butter, or shortening) with an equal amount of avocado
  • As a first food for babies, in lieu of processed baby food
  • In soups. For examples, see Lucy Lock's Chilled Mediterranean Soup or her Raw Creamy Carrot Soup
  • Added to smoothies or your protein shake
  • Baked with a soft-boiled egg in the middle for breakfast

You might also want to try this avocado super smoothie recipe, which is adapted from one posted at the Little Epicurean.15 Try it for breakfast or as a light lunch or snack that will stick to your ribs and give you lasting energy.

Avocado Super Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 whole avocado
  • 1 cup of torn kale leaves, no stem
  • 1/2 cup organic blueberries
  • 1/2 cup fresh pineapple
  • 1 cup of organic baby spinach
  • 1/2 sliced cucumber
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut water

Method:

Pour coconut water into blender. Add the avocado, kale, blueberries, pineapple, spinach and cucumber. Cover with lid and blend until smooth. Pour into two glasses and serve immediately.

Do You Wish You Could Grow Your Own Avocado Tree?

The seed from an avocado can be used to grow your own tree, although it's not as simple as just planting it in the ground. To get an avocado seed to grow, its "pointy" end needs to face the sun while the flat end needs to be kept wet at all times.

One way to accomplish this is by placing three or four toothpicks into the outer layer of the seed. Use the toothpicks as support structures to 'float' the seed on the top of a glass of water. If done properly, roots should begin to sprout within one or two months.

A Kickstarter campaign has also been launched for a device called the AvoSeedo. It keeps the seed properly immersed in water, and automatically adjusts as the water level in your container goes down. This makes the germination process much easier and more foolproof, because if your seed dries out, the germination process might stop permanently. If you're interested in growing your own avocado tree, you may want to check it out.

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Chili Garlic Ginger Shrimp Recipe PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

I have cautioned against consuming most seafood due to the potential of having widespread contamination. Many varieties of fish today come from polluted waters and are tainted with mercury, PCBs, and other potentially toxic heavy metals that can do serious damage to your health.  

However, I believe that shrimp, due to their small size, are one of the safer kinds of seafood that you can consume – as long as it is obtained from fresh, clean, and trustworthy sources,.   

If you can find a safe source of shrimp, I recommend whipping up this simple but truly flavorful sautéed shrimp recipe: Chili Garlic Ginger Shrimp.

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup  coconut oil
  • 2 inch piece of fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 fresh red chilies, seeds removed and thinly sliced
  • 16 large shrimp (16 ounces), peeled and deveined
  • 1-2 lemons, to taste
  • ½ cup Italian parsley, roughly chopped
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Preparation:

  • Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat. Add coconut oil, ginger, garlic, chili, and shrimp. Cook for about 3 minutes, stirring often.
  • Turn the heat to low and add the juice of 1 lemon. Stir in parsley. Remove from heat.
  • Taste the sauce and add salt and pepper, and more lemon juice if desired.

This recipe makes 4 servings.

(From Dr. Mercola’s Healthy Recipes for Your Nutritional Type)

Chili Garlic Ginger Shrimp Cooking Tips

If obtained from fresh, clean sources, shrimp is an excellent and nutritious food that can be served in various ways – whether as an hors d’ oeuvre, main dish, or even added to soups and salads. The key is finding wild shrimp harvested from the cleanest cold water sources.

When buying seafood, especially shrimp, look for products certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch can also guide you in the direction of more sustainable seafood choices.

Seafood Watch has rated various seafood sources according to their sustainability and other parameters. Although some of their “Best Choice” shrimp include farmed shrimp (which I absolutely do not recommend), some of the wild-caught shrimp varieties on their good-to-best list that you can consider buying are:1

  • Spot prawns from British Columbia (Canadian Pacific)
  • Coonstripe, northern and sidestripe shrimp, and spot prawns caught off Alaska

When purchasing fresh shrimp, look for those that are shiny and do not have any black spots. They shouldn’t be slimy and should have no ammonia-like odor, which are signs that the shrimp are going bad.2

Before deveining and shelling the shrimp, make sure you rinse them thoroughly. To devein, simply peel the shell using a paring knife and make a shallow slit along the back, from the head to the tail. Look for the black sand vein running along the center of the back. Using the tip of the knife, carefully remove and discard the vein. Rinse again under cold water.

Shrimp cooks very quickly, usually taking two to four minutes (depending on their size). Once they have started to curl up and turned a nice pink or light orange color, they’re ready to eat.

Why Is Chili Garlic Ginger Shrimp Good for You?

Fresh, wild-caught shrimp is an excellent health food that contains various nutrients like:

  • Vitamin B12
  • Tryptophan (an essential amino acid)
  • Healthful fats like omega-3s, saturated fat, and cholesterol
  • Selenium (Research shows that the selenium in shrimp can be well-absorbed by the human body)
  • Astaxanthin
  • High-quality protein (WHFoods3 actually ranks it as the eighth best food source of protein)

The shrimp in this recipe is made even more healthful by the herbs and spices used to flavor it, such as:

Ginger

Not only is ginger a wonderful (and fragrant) addition to your cooking, but it also has a wide array of medicinal properties that can fill several books. That’s why it’s one spice that I recommend having in your kitchen at all times. Ginger is a rich source of antioxidants such as zingerones, gingerols, and shogaols. It also has broad-spectrum antiviral, antibacterial, and antiparasitic properties.

If unpeeled, ginger can stay fresh in your refrigerator for up to three weeks, or in your freezer for six months or longer.

Garlic

Fresh garlic, despite its slightly pungent odor, is a potent herb with antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties although its therapeutic effects may go much further than that. The benefits of garlic come from its sulfur-containing compounds, such as allicin. Oligosaccharides, selenium, arginine-rich proteins, and flavonoids also give it its health-promoting qualities.

If stored properly, garlic will stay fresh for about a month. Keep it in an uncovered container away from heat and sunlight, to prevent it from sprouting.

Chilies

The spicy flavor of chilies comes from capsaicin, an odorless and colorless compound that is produced to protect the peppers from fungal attack. When you eat it, it tricks your brain into perceiving heat where it touches your body.

Capsaicin is found to help alleviate pain by depleting your body’s supply of substance P, a chemical component of nerve cells that is necessary for transmitting pain signals to your brain. This compound also de-sensitizes your skin’s sensory receptors.

The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of capsaicin may also have some benefits against cancer. For example, it was found that capsaicin suppresses the growth of human prostate cancer cells, but leaves normal cells unharmed. For more about the benefits of eating chilies, read my article “How Chilies Can Be Used to Treat Pain.”

 
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Vitamin K2: The Missing Nutrient for Heart and Bone Health PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

Most everyone, including many conventional physicians, have begun to appreciate the importance and value of vitamin D. Few, however, recognize the importance of vitamin K2, which is nearly as important as vitamin D.

Dr. Dennis Goodman,1 who was born in South Africa and trained at the University of Cape Town, has multiple board certifications in cardiology (and several subspecialties) and holistic integrative medicine.

After his internship at the Grootte Schuur Hospital—where Dr. Christian Barnard did the first heart transplant in 1967—he came to the US, where he did his cardiology fellowship at the at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, where Dr. Michael DeBakey performed the first bypass surgery.

"I was really very lucky to be in a situation where I had these two cardiac giants as mentors and teachers," he says.

Dr. Goodman is also the chairman of the Department of Integrative Medicine at the New York University (NYU), and has authored the book, Vitamin K2: The Missing Nutrient for Heart and Bone Health. In it, he explains why vitamin K2 is every bit as important as vitamin D.

“For 20 years I was putting stents in; running around day and night at the hospital. When I got called to the emergency room for someone having a heart attack, I was like a fireman putting out a fire in a house.

Sometimes, you were very lucky and could save the house from burning down, and sometimes not.

What I started to realize is that prevention is really the key for us to making the maximum impact. I’ve always been interested in the idea that everything we need to be healthy is provided by the Lord above –namely what’s out there for us to eat.

80 percent of these chronic diseases including atherosclerosis, heart attacks and strokes, diabetes, and obesity are preventable. So I got into the whole idea of learning integrative medicine,” he says.

He was the chief of cardiology at Scripps Memorial, and went on to Scripps Clinic for Integrative Medicine for many years.

“Obviously, when you understand holistic medicine, you understand that so much of what we’re doing, unfortunately, in traditional medicine is procedures, testing, and prescribing drugs, because that’s what we’re taught—and making diagnoses instead of taking care of people who basically may not have a disease, but are not healthy and well.”

As a cardiologist, it's quite appropriate to delve into vitamin K2, as it has two crucial functions: one is in cardiovascular health and the other is in bone restoration.

It performs many other functions as well, but by helping remove calcium from the lining of the blood vessels, vitamin K2 helps prevent occlusions from atherosclerosis.

Vitamin K Basics

Vitamins K1 and K2 are part of a family, but they are very different in their activity and function. Vitamin K1, found in green leafy vegetables, is a fat-soluble vitamin involved in the production of coagulation factors, which are critical for stopping bleeding.

This is why when someone's on a blood thinner such as warfarin, they need to be careful not to take too much vitamin K1, as it will antagonize the effect of drug. Vitamin K2 is very different. There's a complex biochemistry that occurs with K2 involving two enzymes:

  • Matrix Gla-protein (MGP)
  • Osteocalcin

“Gla” is short for glutamic acid. Glutamic acid is imported into the cells in the wall of your arteries, where it binds to calcium and removes it from the lining of your blood vessels.

Once removed from your blood vessel lining, vitamin K2 then facilitates the intergration of that calcium into your bone matrix by handing it over to osteocalcin,. The osteocalcin then helps cement the calcium in place.

Vitamin K2 activates these two proteins. Without it, this transfer process of calcium from your arteries to your bone cannot occur, which raises your risk of arterial calcification.

"Vitamin K2 is like a light switch—it switches on MGP and osteocalcin, which takes calcium out of the arterial wall and keeps it in the bone.

There's so much information showing this relationship between osteoporosis (not having enough calcium in your bones) and having an increased incidence of heart disease. What's actually happening, I think, a lot of patients are vitamin K2-deficient," Dr. Goodman says.

“So now, I tell all patients – especially when they have risk factors for calcification – ‘You’ve got to get vitamin K2 when you take your vitamin D, and your calcium, and magnesium.’ Because we need to make sure that the calcium is going where it’s supposed to go.”

Statins May Increase Arterial Calcification by Depleting Vitamin K2

Besides a vitamin K2-poor diet, certain drugs may affect your vitamin K2 status. Dr. Goodman cites a recent article2 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, which suggests statin drugs may increase calcification in the arteries.

Interestingly enough, another recent study3 published in the Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology shows that statins deplete vitamin K2.

“For me, that is so huge because if that’s true, everybody that is put on a statin, you want to make sure they’re also taking vitamin K2,” Dr. Goodman says.

This is an important observation, considering one in four adults in the US over the age of 40 is on a statin drug. Not only do all of these people need to take a ubiquinol or coenzyme Q10, which is also depleted by the drug, it's quite likely they also need vitamin K2 to avoid cardiovascular harm.

Sources of Vitamin K2

Vitamin K2 is produced by certain bacteria, so the primary food source of vitamin K2 is fermented foods such as natto, a fermented soy product typically sold in Asian grocery stores. Fermented vegetables can be a great source of vitamin K if you ferment your own using a specially-designed starter culture. My Kinetic Culture is high in strains that make vitamin K2. If you would like to learn more about making your own fermented vegetables with a starter culture, you can watch the video and read more on this page.

Please note that not every strain of bacteria makes K2, so not all fermented foods will contain it. For example, most yogurts have almost no vitamin K2. Certain types of cheeses, such as Gouda, Brie, and Edam, are high in K2, while others are not. It really depends on the specific bacteria. Still, it's quite difficult to get enough vitamin K2 from your diet—especially if you do not eat K2-rich fermented foods—so taking a supplement may be a wise move for most people.

How Can You Tell if You're Deficient in Vitamin K2?

The major problem we face when it comes to optimizing vitamin K2 is that, unlike vitamin D, there’s no easy way to screen or test for vitamin K2 sufficiency. Vitamin K2 cannot at present be measured directly, so it’s measured through an indirect assessment of undercarboxylated osteocalcin. This test is still not commercially available, however. “That’s our problem. If that was available, we could start testing and showing people that their levels are low,” Dr. Goodman says.

Without testing, we’re left with looking at various lifestyle factors that predispose you to deficiency. As a general rule, if you have any of the following health conditions, you're likely deficient in vitamin K2:

That said, it's believed that the vast majority of people are in fact deficient these days and would benefit from more K2. One reason for this is very few (Americans in particular) eat enough vitamin K2-rich foods. So, if you do not have any of the health conditions listed, but do NOT regularly eat high amounts of the following foods, then your likelihood of being vitamin K2 deficient is still very high:

  • Certain fermented foods such as natto, or vegetables fermented using a starter culture of vitamin K2-producing bacteria
  • Certain cheeses such as Brie and Gouda (these two are particularly high in K2, containing about 75 mcg per ounce)
  • Grass-fed organic animal products (i.e. egg yolks, butter, dairy)

Different Kinds of Vitamin K2

The vitamin K puzzle is even more complex than differentiating between K1 and K2. There are also several different forms of vitamin K2. The two primary ones—and the only ones available in supplement form—are menaquinone-4 (MK-4) and menaquinone-7 (MK-7). MK-4 has a very short biological half-life—about one hour—making it a poor candidate as a dietary supplement. MK-7 stays in your body longer; its half-life is three days, meaning you have a much better chance of building up a consistent blood level, compared to MK-4.

In supplement form, the MK-4 products are actually synthetic. They are not derived from natural food products containing MK-4. The MK-7– long-chain, natural bacterial-derived vitamin K2– on the other hand comes from a fermentation process, which offers a number of health advantages.

Research4 has shown MK-7 also helps prevent inflammation by inhibiting pro-inflammatory markers produced by white blood cells called monocytes. MK-7 is extracted from the Japanese fermented soy product natto, and since it's longer lasting, you only need to take it once a day. With an MK-4 supplement, you need to take it three times a day. The duration of action is also much longer with MK-7.

As for a clinically useful dosage, some studies have shown as little as 45 micrograms per day is sufficient. Dr. Goodman recommends taking 180 micrograms per day, making sure the K2 is in the form of MK-7. If you're eating natto, all you need is about one teaspoon.

That said, vitamin K2 is non-toxic, so you don't need to worry about overdosing if you get more. Do keep in mind that vitamin K2 may not necessarily make you "feel better" per se. Its internal workings are such that you're not likely to feel the difference physically. Compliance can therefore be a problem, as people are more likely to take something that has a noticeable effect. This may not happen with vitamin K2, but that certainly does not mean it's not doing anything! Last but not least, remember to always take your vitamin K supplement with fat since it is fat-soluble and won't be absorbed without it.

Magnesium Recommendations

Another important nutrient is magnesium, which Dr. Goodman addressed in an earlier book called Magnificent Magnesium: Your Essential Key to a Healthy Heart & More. There are at least 350 enzyme systems in your body that require magnesium for proper function. Perhaps even more importantly, the quartet of calcium, vitamin D, K2, and magnesium all work together synergistically. "They're all in the symphony. You should take them all," Dr. Goodman says. I couldn't agree more, and have discussed this in previous articles.

If you can find a supplement that contains vitamin D, magnesium, and vitamin K2 in combination, that might be ideal, and then add calcium according to your individual needs. One way to get calcium from your diet that doesn't cost you anything extra is to pulverize the eggshell from an organic, pastured egg. I use a coffee grinder to do this. I then add the powdered eggshell to my smoothie. Do be sure the eggs you use are organically raised on pasture though. You do not want to use eggs from chickens raised in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs).

Getting back to magnesium, the only people who really need to be concerned about taking too much are those with renal failure. “If your creatinine’s high, or you got renal failure, you can get into trouble with magnesium,” he says. “But everybody else, the only thing that can happen is some loose stools.”

As for the type of magnesium, Dr. Goodman recommends taking magnesium that ends in “ate”: threonate, glycinate, citrate, and dimalate —the latter of which has a slow-release technology (JIGSAW). “I cannot tell you how many people have written to me, e-mailed me, and thanked me because of magnesium supplementation – no more headaches, they’re sleeping at night, no more leg cramps or palpitations. In some patients it actually helped them lose weight. It’s huge,” he says.

More Information

In closing, Dr. Goodman notes, “I really hope that people get the message that we both are trying to send: to be healthy, you’ve actually got to do something about it. You’ve got to get up, think about nutrition, and think about exercise, stress management, and sleep.” In fact, in addition to vitamin K2, we discuss a number of side issues essential to optimal health in this interview, so for additional pointers please listen to the full interview, linked below the condensed video above, or read through the transcript.

I also recommend picking up one or both of Dr. Goodman's books: Vitamin K2: The Missing Nutrient for Heart and Bone Health, and Magnificent Magnesium: Your Essential Key to a Healthy Heart & More to learn more about these two underappreciated nutrients. While going into complex topics, Dr. Goodman's books are easy to read and understand for the layperson.

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A 4th Grader's Short Documentary About School Lunch PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

Zachary Maxell was not your ordinary fourth grader. Zachary became disenchanted with the school lunches at his large public elementary school in New York City.

Every morning, he read the mouth-watering descriptions on the city’s online lunch menu to see what delectable cuisine was to be served that day.

Zach looked forward to those lunches that read as if they were coming from one of the city’s finest restaurants, but every day his heart sank when he was handed a tray of pale, lifeless, and ultimately tasteless food that was nothing like the advertisement—not by a long shot.

Irritated, hungry, and determined, Zachary decided to take matters into his own hands and went undercover.

Armed with a concealed video camera and a “healthy dose of rebellious courage,” he embarked on a covert mission to collect video footage of lunch—narrowly escaping encounters with the Lunch Lady that would end with embarrassing marches to the principal’s office.

Six months and 75 school lunches later, Zachary turned his secret footage into a short and funny but very eye-opening documentary named “Yuck!,” about New York City’s school lunch program.1

Serving Up Lies

Based on his courageous sleuthing, Zachary Maxwell gathered up enough evidence to allow a comparison between the City’s online advertisements of school lunches and what was actually served.

Was the City being truthful about the “delicious and nutritious” meals they advertised? Hardly!

Far from the mouth-watering culinary representations posted online, school lunches were highly repetitious, consisting mostly of processed foods and notably lacking in fresh fruits or vegetables. No dishes were made in house—meals were essentially a tour of factory food.

Although this was a sampling from only one school, the food quality can probably be generalized to the majority of school lunches across the country. Based upon his data, Zachary determined the following about his school lunch program:

  • “Two or more advertised items” were served only 51 percent of the time
  • “All advertised items” were served only 16 percent of the time
  • Pizza or cheese sticks were served 28 percent of the time, regardless of what the menu advertised

What was Zachary’s ultimate conclusion? The best lunches come in a brown paper bag.

Brown Bagging Is Likely Your Child’s Healthiest Option

Packing a healthy lunch for your child is probably a good idea, as the federal lunch program is in dire need of an overhaul. Any system in which pizza and French fries qualify as “vegetables” is unlikely to offer much nutrition.

Today, the National School Lunch Program operates in over 100,000 private and public schools, as well as residential child care institutions.

In the 2006 book Lunch Lessons, Cooper and Holmes write that, under the current school lunch program, French fries represent 46 percent of “vegetable servings” consumed by children ages two to 19, nationwide.

Skim chocolate milk is the number one school lunch beverage. The rationale for this comes from the ill-conceived plan to restrict your child’s fats—even healthy fats—with complete lack of regard for sugar. The USDA believes substituting sugar for healthy fat in milk is “worth it” to get kids to drink milk.

However, adding sugar and removing healthy saturated fat is a recipe for obesity, heart disease, cancer, and other chronic diseases, which is what we’ve been seeing in children at increasingly younger ages.

This of course completely ignores the fact that the milk is from CAFO animals given GMO feed antibiotics and hormones. Then this dangerous fluid is pasteurized to further destroy its nutritional value.

The USDA’s Smart Snacks in School program gives lip service to offering “healthy choices.” But if you look at this Smart Snacks Infographic,2 you can see that the "smarter, healthier" choices are actually processed foods, including junk foods like tortilla chips and artificially flavored water.

Most school lunches are heavily reliant on high-energy, low-nutrient-value processed foods because they’re cheaper. In 2011, the US spent more than twice as much on air conditioning for troops in Afghanistan than on the National School Lunch Program,3 and today’s childhood obesity rates reflect it.

That said, it’s not simply a matter of inadequate funding—it’s also a matter of how these funds are used.

STUDY: Kids More Likely to Be Obese if They Eat School Lunches

Over the past 14 years, severe obesity has increased among children, according to a 2014 study published in JAMA Pediatrics.4 In NYC, one in five kindergarteners is obese.5

Besides obesity, a poor diet makes kids less academically competitive. In one study, fifth-graders who ate fast food four or more times a week showed 20 percent lower test score gains by the eighth grade.

Are school lunches directly contributing to the obesity epidemic? If you look at the results of a 2010 study,6,7 the answer is yes. More than 1,000 sixth graders in Michigan who regularly ate school lunches were found 29 percent more likely to be obese than those who brought lunches from home. Specifically, the kids who ate school lunches:

  • Were more likely to be overweight or obese (38.2 percent vs. 24.7 percent)
  • Were more likely to consume two or more sugary drinks a day (19 percent vs. 6.8 percent)
  • Were less likely to eat at least two servings of vegetables a day (39.9 percent vs. 50.3 percent)
  • Were less likely to eat at least two servings of fruits a day (32.6 percent vs. 49.4 percent)
  • Were less likely to participate in sports or moderate exercise, and spent more time watching TV, playing video games, and using computers outside of school

Obesity Rates Fall When Access to Junk Food Is Limited

School policies that limit access to junk food have been demonstrated to make a difference. An article in Mother Jones8 cites a 2012 study9 by the University of Illinois that compared the weight gain of kids in states that limit junk food availability in schools with those that don’t. Students who attend school in states that limit junk food sales gained an average of 0.44 body mass index units (2.25 fewer pounds for a 5 foot tall child) less than adolescents in states with no policies.

The study also found that obese fifth graders living in states with stronger laws were more likely to reach a healthy weight by eighth grade than those living in states with no laws. Mother Jones cited another study &that found kids living in states with restricted junk food sales consume 160 fewer calories per day than kids in states with no such restrictions. The message here is clear: the accessibility of junk food substantially influences kids’ choices—and therefore their health. This is a commentary on the massive effectiveness of junk food marketing, which heavily targets children—even on the school grounds itself.

Eighty percent of public schools have contracts with Coke or Pepsi.10 Coca-Cola paid the Rockford, Illinois school district $4 million upfront and an additional $350K per year to sell its beverages in its schools. When schools aren’t forced to provide healthy food, they usually don’t, according to a 2015 study published in JAMA Pediatrics.11 Only a small number of schools offered healthy food options before the USDA federally mandated them under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.

But for the small percentage of kids who did attend schools that revamped nutrition, researchers saw positive trends for obesity rates, suggesting that wider compliance could really make a difference. Even thought new nutritional standards were signed into law, schools have had a difficult time implementing these guidelines. In fact, the entire issue has become a political lightening rod between special interest groups and food industry lobbyists. French fries will not go down without a fight! If you want a detailed account of the resultant school lunch wars, this New York Times article is quite comprehensive.12

Vending Machines, Friend or Foe?

Having readily accessible vending machines fully stocked with junk food on school campuses makes matters worse by giving kids the opportunity to make even more unhealthy choices. Vending machines are found across the US in:13

  • 43 percent of elementary schools
  • 74 percent of middle schools
  • 98 percent of high schools

The results of a 2004 Gallup Youth Survey reported that 67 percent of high school students purchased food from vending machines, but I suspect the number is probably much higher today.14 On a positive note, almost half of all school districts have now banned junk food from vending machines,15 and some now offer fresh fruits and vegetables. Studies show that students will not choose healthy foods if junk foods are an option—the temptation is too great. However, studies also suggest that removing vending machines altogether does not work, as kids will obtain junk food from other places. When vending machines offer ONLY healthy choices, kids will buy those items—in other words, they adapt.16,17

How American School Lunches Stack Up, Next to France

Kids actually appreciate real food. A study18 recently published in the peer-reviewed journal Childhood Obesity found that, just like our star fourth-grader Zachary Maxwell, 70 percent of kids actually prefer healthier lunches.19 But where does a kid have to go to get a tasty, nutritious lunch? Outside the US, it would seem.

Consider what kids are served for lunch in France.20 There, almost all foods are prepared from scratch, right in the school kitchen. Main dishes, vegetables, soups, salads, and desserts are prepared daily, typically from local sources—you won’t find any frozen chicken fingers or pink slime burgers in French cafeterias. The only beverage served to schoolchildren there is filtered tap water. French children also get three recess periods per day—two 15-minute and one 60-minute recess—and the majority walk or bike to school. Given this, it’s not surprising that French kids aren’t fat. If you want to see what kids eat for lunch in other parts of the world, Business Insider has prepared an interesting slideshow.21

They’re Calling Off Recess... Seriously?

Physical education classes are at a historic low, often the first to get hit by budget cuts, but worse still, some schools are now eliminating recess.22,23 For a nation with childhood obesity rates already through the roof, this is insane! Why cut recess? Student performance on mandatory standardized tests often dictates teachers’ pay, and in some cases their jobs. So, many teachers are requiring students to spend playground time in the classroom, preparing for these tests.

Exercise is essential for children’s physical and mental health, as well as their social development. Children who exercise have better math and reading scores, improved concentration, stronger bones, better sleep, and lower risk of obesity and diabetes, as well as a mountain of other health benefits. The last thing we need to do is decrease exercise time and set them up for a potential of future inactivity that will decimate their health.

A Few Basic Tenets of Raising a Healthy, Happy Child

You have the unique opportunity (and responsibility) for teaching your child what “real food” is—particularly if his school is setting the opposite example. The following are a few basic lifestyle strategies you can model and teach your child:

  1. Proper food choices: Focus on eating a variety of locally sourced, organic whole foods, and consume a large percentage of them raw. Avoid refined sugar, especially high fructose corn syrup and other processed forms of fructose, sodas, pre-packaged foods and sports drinks. Make sure your child gets ample healthy fats, such as coconut oil, raw grass-fed butter, raw nuts, avocados, etc. Introduce your child to naturally fermented foods, which should become a permanent part of his diet. And if your child is not getting an acceptable school lunch, pack one at home.
  2. Daily exercise: Limit your child’s indoor time, especially in front of the TV, computer, and other electronic devices. Overweight and obese children need at least 30 minutes of exercise each day, and may benefit from closer to 60 minutes. Encourage your kids to play outside—and don’t be afraid of the dirt! Playing outside has the additional benefit of sun exposure to optimize vitamin D levels.
  3. Drink plenty of pure water: Introduce your child to the concept of fresh water as a beverage, as opposed to sodas and other commercial drinks.
  4. High-quality sleep: Children who sleep more tend to weigh less and have lower levels of the hormone leptin, better insulin sensitivity, and fewer food cravings than children who sleep less.
  5. Help your child manage stress: Stress affects kids as well as adults, so it’s important to teach your child how to manage it. One great technique that’s simple enough for kids to learn is EFT, or Emotional Freedom Technique (tapping). EFT can also benefit you, as a parent, to cope with the stresses of parenting. For more information, please visit my EFT page.
  6. Avoid as many chemicals and toxins as possible: Hormone-mimicking chemicals in common food and household products are known contributors to precocious puberty and other endocrine problems in children. Replace your child’s personal products (shampoos, lotions, soaps, cosmetics, etc.) and cleaning products with greener alternatives.
  7. Make informed choices about your child’s medical care: I cannot impress upon you strongly enough the importance of your active involvement in all aspects of your child’s healthcare, including vaccination.
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What Secrets Are Revealed in City Sewage About Health PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

Your body is teeming with bacteria, fungi, viruses, and other microbes that together make up your microbial inner ecosystem, or microflora. Your body actually contains about 100 trillion cells, but amazingly only one in 10 is "human." The others are made up of bacteria and other microorganisms.

As reported by Quartz:1

Bacterial cells alone outnumber our own by a factor of 20. No one has estimated the number of viruses, but we expect between ten and a hundred times more than the bacteria. In the body, microbial genes outnumber human genes by a factor of 200.”

You may recall the Human Genome Project, which was launched in 1990 and completed in 2003.2 The mission was to map out all human genes and their interactions, which would than serve as the basis for curing virtually any disease.

Unfortunately, not only did they realize the human body consists of far fewer genes than previously believed, they also discovered that these genes do not operate as previously predicted. Part of the problem is that we are not simply a product of our human cells – we’re a product of our microbiome as well.

Your genes, in fact, can be influenced by the bacteria and other microbes in your body, so by studying the microbial makeup of any population, you can actually gain much insight into its health. This is just what one group of researchers set out to do, using easily one of the best sources of human microbes around… poop.

City Sewage Reveals Communities’ Obesity Rate

Researchers from the University of Wisconsin and the Marine Biological Laboratory in Massachusetts analyzed more than 200 sewage samples from treatment plants in 71 cities. Using genetic sequencing, they determined that about 15 percent of the bacteria tested came from human feces.3

Testing of gut microbiomes among individuals has to date shown that each is highly individual, with no core set of bacterial species dominating. However, by sampling sewage, which gives access to samples from millions of people, much less variability was present.

The researchers identified a set of “core” bacteria (about 60 types in all) that they noted are “both common to and abundant in the US populations.” Still, there were noted differences from city to city. As reported by the American Association for the Advancement of Science:4

“…the abundance of these and less common bacteria varied from place to place. This variation in the “sewer-wide” microbiomes reflected the variation seen among surveys of microbiomes of individual people. Each city had “a unique signature,” [Sandra] McLellan [a microbiologist at the University of Wisconsin] explains.

Those differences offer hints about the health of cities’ residents. Fat people tend to have a different microbiome from that of lean people, for example.

By analyzing the microbes in each city’s sewage, the researchers could tell which had an obesity problem, [Mithcell] Sogin [
a molecular evolutionist at the Marine Biological Laboratory] says.

Denver and Key West, Florida, microbes reflected a leaner population than those from Salina, Kansas, and Memphis, Tennessee, for example.”

In fact, by analyzing the distribution patterns of different groups of microbes, the researchers were able to determine whether the sewage samples came from obese or lean populations, with up to 89 percent accuracy.5

Yes, Your Microbes Might Be Making You Fat

Research has shown that obese individuals had about 20 percent more of a family of bacteria known as firmicutes, and almost 90 percent less of a bacteria called bacteroidetes than lean people.6

Firmicutes help your body to extract calories from complex sugars and deposit those calories in fat. When these microbes were transplanted into normal-weight mice, those mice started to gain twice as much fat.

This is one explanation for how the microflora in your gut may affect your weight. A 2011 study also found that daily intake of a specific form of lactic acid bacteria could help prevent obesity and reduce low-level inflammation.7

In this study, rats given the bacterium while in utero through adulthood put on significantly less weight than the control group, even though both groups of rats ate a similar high-calorie diet. 

They also had lower levels of minor inflammation, which has been associated with obesity. Meanwhile, obese people were able to reduce their abdominal fat by nearly 5 percent and their subcutaneous fat by over 3 percent just by drinking a probiotic-rich fermented milk beverage for 12 weeks.8

Given that the control group experienced no significant fat reductions at all during the study period, this is strong evidence that nourishing your microbial community is essential.

Preliminary research from the Netherlands has even revealed that transplanting fecal matter from healthy thin people into obese people with metabolic syndrome led to an improvement in insulin sensitivity.9

Is Your Microbiome Its Own Organ?

Researchers are increasingly starting to recognize gut microbiota as one of your unappreciated “organs.”10 It may be even more apt to view your body as a “super organism” composed of symbiotic microorganisms.

Yet, research suggests that many people are deficient in gut bacteria, making it a very important consideration if you’re not feeling in optimal shape, physically or psychologically. In one study, one-quarter of the participants were found to have 40 percent fewer gut bacteria than the average needed for good health.11 Obese participants were particularly at risk.

What might it mean for your health if you’re lacking in bacteria? The National Institutes of Health cites research showing that “variations in the composition of microbial communities may contribute to chronic health conditions, including diabetes, asthma, obesity, and digestive disorders.”

Gut bacteria have also been found to influence the processing and utilization of dietary nutrients,12  and they help protect against food borne disease.13 Bacteria have also been identified as major players in the distribution of your body fat, metabolism, and the regulation of your mood and memory.

Mounting research actually shows that problems in your gut can directly impact your mental health, leading to issues like anxiety and depression. They also help educate your immune cells—telling them which pathogens to fight off and which ones to leave alone.

Gut microbiota is also known to affect inflammation and metabolism, both of which are hallmarks of cancer. In fact, researchers have already linked certain microbes to specific cancers, such as:

  • H.pylori in gastric cancer. (The International Agency for Research on Cancer defines this microbe as a carcinogen14) Interestingly, H.pylori has also been linked to a reduced risk of esophageal adenocarcinoma, demonstrating the complexity involved, and the organ-specific effects microbes can have when it comes to their impact on cancer
  • Hepatitis C virus (HCV) in hepatocellular carcinoma
  • Chronic Salmonella enterica infection in gallbladder cancer
  • Haemophilus influenza and Candida albicans in lower respiratory tract tumors

Does Studying Microbes Hold the Key to Understanding Human Disease?

Scientific studies almost always focus on carefully chosen groups of people who are studied for a specific purpose, typically to confirm or debunk a hypothesis.

What made the featured sewage study so unique is that it allowed researchers to sample the fecal microbiota from millions of people – a feat that may have been impossible otherwise. A. Murat Eren, one of the featured study’s co-authors, told The Atlantic:15

“This is a way to generate information about the public without infringing on any individual’s privacy… In a natural way, we access the microbiome of a given community…  ‘By looking at the changes in microbial composition, we can come out with some early warning signals’ about how a community’s health may be changing over time.”

They’re not the only ones interested in sewage. Researchers from MIT are undertaking the so-called “Underworlds” project beginning this year. They intend to test Boston-area sewage for the presence of viruses, bacterial pathogens, and pharmaceutical and illegal drugs. As the Boston Globe reported:16 Data on such substances could predict epidemics or tell when they’re waning. They could also demonstrate the impact of shifts in regulations, such as bans on using trans fat in restaurants.”

The US National Institute of Health’s Human Microbiome Project (HMP) is also underway to “characterize microbial communities found at multiple human body sites and to look for correlations between changes in the microbiome and human health.” So far, this data gathering has resulted in nearly 200 scientific papers, along with a repository of resources that scientists can access to explore the relationships between human gut bacteria and disease.

The American Gut Project decided to take it a step further by allowing the American public to participate. (I published an invitation to join the project in 2012. Hopefully, some of you decided to join, as I did. If you didn’t, you can still sign up to participate on the Human Food Project’s website.17) All the gathered information from this project will be made public. It’s an extremely ambitious project seeking to identify the parameters for the ideal gut flora and how diet affects it. According to the American Gut Project:18

“One of the big questions the American Gut scientists hope to figure out is what characterizes healthy and sick guts (or even just healthier and sicker guts) and how one might move from the latter to the former… Even just beginning to know how many and which species live in our guts will be exciting, particularly since most of these species have never been studied, which is to say there are almost certainly new species inside you, though until you sample yourself… we won't know which ones.”

Optimizing Your Gut Flora for Optimal Health

All of this information should really drive home the point that optimizing your gut flora – living in harmony with your microbiome instead of assaulting it -- is of critical importance for disease prevention. Reseeding your gut with beneficial bacteria is essential for maintaining proper balance here. In light of this, here are my recommendations for optimizing your gut bacteria.

  • Fermented foods are the best route to optimal digestive health, as long as you eat the traditionally made, unpasteurized versions. Healthy choices include lassi (an Indian yoghurt drink, traditionally enjoyed before dinner), fermented grass-fed organic milk such as kefir, various pickled fermentations of cabbage, turnips, eggplant, cucumbers, onions, squash, and carrots, and natto (fermented soy). Fermented vegetables are an excellent way to supply beneficial bacteria back into our gut. As an added bonus, they can also a great source of vitamin K2 if you ferment your own using the proper starter culture.
  • We had samples of high-quality, fermented organic vegetables made with our specific starter culture tested, and a typical serving (about two to three ounces) contained not only 10 trillion beneficial bacteria, but it also had 500 mcg of vitamin K2, which we now know is a vital co-nutrient to both vitamin D and calcium. Most high-quality probiotic supplements will only supply you with a fraction of the beneficial bacteria found in such homemade fermented veggies, so it's your most economical route to optimal gut health as well.

  • Probiotic supplement. Although I'm not a major proponent of taking many supplements (as I believe the majority of your nutrients need to come from food), probiotics are an exception if you don't eat fermented foods on a regular basis.

In addition to knowing what to add to your diet and lifestyle, it's equally important to know what to avoid, and these include:

Antibiotics, unless absolutely necessary (and when you do, make sure to reseed your gut with fermented foods and/or a probiotic supplement) Conventionally-raised meats and other animal products, as CAFO animals are routinely fed low-dose antibiotics, plus genetically engineered grains, which have also been implicated in the destruction of gut flora Processed foods (as the excessive sugars, along with otherwise "dead" nutrients, feed pathogenic bacteria)
Chlorinated and/or fluoridated water Antibacterial soap Agricultural chemicals, glyphosate (Roundup) in particular
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Film Covers the Many Dangers of the Cheap Meat Industry PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

For several decades, Americans have enjoyed paying low prices for meat at the grocery store. Unfortunately, many are unaware of the hidden costs of "cheap meat"—and when you add them up, they are substantial.

The manner in which most commercial livestock is raised is wasteful of precious resources and destructive to the environment, in some ways irreparably. In addition to the broader ecosystem, people and wildlife have been paying dearly with their health.

The documentary "Meat of the Matter" traces the trail of destruction left by the commercial meat industry.

On the brighter side, a new breed of ranchers is leading the meat revolution by returning to traditional styles of animal husbandry, farming in a manner that actually supports and restores the earth as opposed to recklessly using it up.

The US Meat Racket

Most meat in the US (beef, pork, chicken, turkey, etc.) is raised in confined animal feeding operations, or CAFOs. It's a corporate-controlled system characterized by large-scale, centralized, low profit-margin production, processing and distribution systems.

Food production has been built around efficiency—producing more for less. Worldwide, tens of billions of animals are crammed into feedlots, where they're tortured by unhealthy, unsanitary, and cruel conditions.

This is the "cheapest" way to raise meat, for the largest profits. Making matters worse, the government subsidizes these operations, shrewdly fleecing American taxpayers in order to keep the meat monopoly going.

Smaller American ranchers wishing to offer traditionally raised grass-fed meats, who care about quality and environmental impact, face higher operational costs and must charge a premium for their product.

Most of the grass-fed beef sold in the US—as much as 85 percent—is actually imported from Australia and New Zealand because those countries still have plentiful grasslands, as well as a climate that permits year-round grazing. As a result, Australian ranchers can sell their meat for less than American ranchers.1

Embed this infographic on your website:

Click on the code area and press CTRL + C (for Windows) / CMD + C (for Macintosh) to copy the code.

Are You Eating Too Much Meat, or the Wrong Kind?

Most Americans consume three to five times more protein than they need (along with excess sugar and starchy carbohydrates and insufficient healthy fats). Excess protein can lead to elevated blood sugar, weight gain, kidney stress, leaching of bone minerals, and increased cancer risk.

Ideal protein intake for most is approximately one-half gram of protein per pound of lean body mass, which is typically 40 to 70 grams per day. Protein quality is as important as quantity. The best approach is to consume a wide variety of high–quality, grass-fed animal- and plant-based organic whole foods, such as the following.

Red meat, pork, poultry, and seafood average 6-9 grams of protein per ounce.

An ideal amount for most people would be a 3-ounce serving of meat or seafood (not 9- or 12-ounce steaks!), which will provide about 18-27 grams of protein
Eggs contain about 6-8 grams of protein per egg. So an omelet made from two eggs would give you about 12-16 grams of protein

If you add cheese, you need to calculate that protein in as well (check the label of your cheese)
Seeds and nuts contain on average 4-8 grams of protein per quarter cup Cooked beans average about 7-8 grams per half cup
Cooked grains average 5-7 grams per cup Most vegetables contain about 1-2 grams of protein per ounce

In addition to eating too much meat, the majority of the excess is of poor quality, originating from CAFOs where the animals are fed an unnatural diet of glyphosate-contaminated genetically engineered grains, instead of fresh grass.

Feeding animals a species appropriate diet profoundly improves the nutritional quality of their meat, which has been established by science. It also virtually eliminates toxins such as glyphosate and other pesticides, which is the other side of the healthy-diet equation.

In 2009, a joint research project between the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Clemson University determined the numerous ways grass-fed beef beats grain-fed beef for your health. In a side-by-side comparison, they determined that grass-fed beef was superior in the following ways:2

Higher in total omega-3s Higher in the B-vitamins thiamin and riboflavin
A healthier ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids (1.65 vs. 4.84)Higher in the minerals calcium, magnesium, and potassium
Higher in CLA (cis-9 trans-11), a potential cancer fighterHigher in vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)
Higher in vaccenic acid (which can be transformed into CLA)Higher in beta-carotene

Improper Slaughtering Hurts More Than Just the Animals

Slaughtering should not to be taken lightly, for multiple reasons, not the least of which is animal welfare. Besides treating animals humanely, you may not realize that how an animal is slaughtered affects food safety and the quality of the meat itself.

Improper slaughtering adversely affects meat quality due to physiological changes that occur when an animal becomes stressed. According to slaughtering guidelines posted by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations:3

"The energy required for muscle activity in the live animal is obtained from sugars (glycogen) in the muscle. In the healthy and well-rested animal, the glycogen content of the muscle is high. After the animal has been slaughtered, the glycogen in the muscle is converted into lactic acid, and the muscle and carcass becomes firm (rigor mortis).

This lactic acid is necessary to produce meat, which is tasteful and tender, of good keeping quality and good color. 
If the animal is stressed before and during slaughter, the glycogen is used up, and the lactic acid level that develops in the meat after slaughter is reduced. This will have serious adverse effects on meat quality."

Improperly handled animals become stressed, particularly while being prepared for slaughter. The meat of stressed animals has even been shown to spoil faster.4 Animals are also far stressed living in CAFOs than on open pasture, and these stressed, injured and frequently diseased animals produce lower quality meat.

Meat that's bruised from injuries received during handling, penning, transport and slaughter must be thrown away, which is a major source of waste. According to the legendary Temple Grandin, there are five basic causes of animal welfare problems in slaughter plants:5

  • Stressful equipment and methods
  • Distractions that impede animal movement
  • Lack of employee training
  • Poor equipment maintenance
  • Poor condition of the animals arriving at the plant

Your Burger May Come with a Side of Antibiotics

It's virtually impossible to mass-produce clean, safe, optimally nutritious foods at rock bottom prices. To prevent the inevitable spread of disease from stress, overcrowding and an unnatural diet, feedlot animals are routinely fed antibiotics and other growth-promoting drugs and hormones. Today, more than 80 percent of total antibiotic use in the US is for livestock.

Nearly 25 million pounds of antibiotics are administered to American livestock each year. Careless antibiotic overuse by the commercial meat industry poses a direct threat to your health in the form of antibiotic-resistant superbugs. When you eat food that contains antibiotics, you not only get the drug but also antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Twenty-two percent of antibiotic-resistant illness in humans is linked to food. Consuming foods containing antibiotic drugs also causes alterations in your gut flora (dysbiosis), which can cause problems with both your mental and physical health.

Foodborne illnesses are a growing concern—we hear about them regularly on the news—but they might be even more serious than previously thought. Mounting research shows that Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Lou Gehrig's disease may be linked to a type of Mad Cow disease that results from the consumption of contaminated meats. When shopping, keep the following labels in mind to help you find truly high-quality meat that's free of antibiotics and other drugs:6

100% USDA Organic label offers excellent assurance that antibiotics have not been used at any stage of production.
"No antibiotics administered" and similar labels also offer high assurance that antibiotics have not been used, especially if accompanied by a "USDA process Verified" shield.
"Grass-fed" label coupled with USDA Organic label means no antibiotics have been used, but if the "grass-fed" label appears alone, antibiotics may have been given.
"American Grass-fed" and "Food Alliance Grass-fed" labels indicate that in addition to having been raised on grass, the animal in question received no antibiotics.
The following three labels: "Antibiotic-free," "No antibiotic residues," and "No antibiotic growth promotants," have not been approved by the USDA and may be misleading if not outright fraudulent.
"Natural" or "All-Natural" is completely meaningless and has no bearing on whether or not the animal was raised according to organic principles. "Natural" meat and poultry products can by law receive antibiotics, hormones, and genetically engineered grains, and can be raised in CAFOs.

BREAKING NEWS: Worst Avian Flu in History Slams Larger Farms but Leaves Backyard Gardens Unscathed


Humans aren't the only ones being sickened by the commercial meat industry—the US is currently being hit by the largest avian flu outbreak in history.7 Bird flu has wiped out 40 percent of the egg-laying flock in Iowa, the number-one egg-producing state in the US, doubling nationwide egg prices. Almost 45 million chickens and turkeys have been killed in an effort to contain the disease, mostly in Iowa and Minnesota, according to the US Department of Agriculture.8 Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, and Nebraska9 have declared states of emergency.

Large-scale egg and turkey farms have been slammed, but backyard gardens have remained unscathed.10 Experts haven't determined exactly how the avian flu is spreading, but the CAFO model virtually guarantees drug resistance and out-of-control spread of disease, for both animals and humans.

The Outrageous Environmental Costs of the Meat Industry

Industrial agriculture is one of the most unsustainable practices of modern civilization. The "bigger is better" food system has reached a point where its real costs are becoming apparent, including massive pollution and loss of life—all manner of plant and animal life. Like water running down an open drain, the earth's natural resources are disappearing quickly. Some, such as soil, can be restored over time IF proper steps are taken, but others are lost forever. We've already seen more than 93 percent of our fruit and vegetable seed varieties disappear over the last century. Another 60,000 to 100,000 plant species are in danger of extinction.

Bees are disappearing at an alarming rate as a result of neonicotinoid pesticides. Monarch butterflies are disappearing even faster, likely due to the pervasive use of glyphosate on GMO crops along its flight path across the US. The North American Monarch population has plummeted by 91 percent over the past two decades. It's likely that our modern food system can be blamed for a significant portion of these losses. One Green Planet has an excellent article11 summarizing five basic ways industrialized farming is destroying the environment:

  1. Air pollution: Industrialized agriculture is responsible for more than 37 percent of methane emissions, 90 percent of CO2, and copious hydrogen sulfide ammonia. Methane has a global warming potential 20 times higher than carbon dioxide.
  2. Water pollution: Industrialized agriculture uses up to 70 percent of the world's fresh water supply. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates 75 percent of all water-quality problems in America's rivers and streams is from chemical-laden agricultural run-off that leads to toxic algal blooms, fish kills, and "dead zones."
  3. Deforestation: In the US alone, more than 260 million acres of native forests have been cleared to make room for crop fields, most of which are used exclusively to grow livestock feed (corn and soy). Deforestation is responsible for 2.4 billions tons of CO2 release annually.
  4. Soils: Nature abhors monoculture, as monoculture leads to soil depletion, erosion, depletion of the water table, loss of soil nutrients, and the application of massive quantities of synthetic agricultural chemicals.
  5. Carbon emissions: CAFOs use about 5.5 gallons of fossil fuels per acre (presumably per year, as article did not specify), between transportation, application of chemicals, and the incredible amount of energy it takes to run these massive productions. The average farm in the US spans 418 acres, meaning it will guzzle about 2,300 gallons of fossil fuels. By adopting a circular economy (reusing and recycling), carbon emissions could be cut by nearly 70 percent by 2030.

Are Greener Pastures Ahead?

Fortunately, there is a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel! Some farming and ranching pioneers are returning to the old ways, raising a wide variety of plants and animals in a way that copies a natural community. This new breed of farmer believes that sustainability and concern for future generations is as important as turning a profit. Animals live out natural lifecycles where they're happy and healthy and allowed to express instinctive behaviors. As sustainable agricultural champion Joel Salatin is fond of saying, pigs are allowed to express their "pig-ness"!

The key is to build healthy soil and healthy pastures—which of course grow healthy grass. As was said in the film, "There is more life below ground than above ground, and that's a hard concept for people to get." Animals roaming and grazing on pasture are strong, disease-free and unstressed, which produces the highest quality meat.

The entire food chain is connected—soils, plants, animals, humans, insects, fungi, and the rest—so supporting the bottom of the food chain ultimately supports your health. No-till agriculture is one of the best approaches to land regeneration, as 70 percent of the soil microbes responsible for plant health and communication are fungi (mycorrhizae), which tilling disrupts. Organic, biodynamic farms tend to be much smaller and cleaner, since the animals are not crammed together.

As a result, the animals are far less likely to harbor dangerous pathogens that contaminate the meat. When it comes time for slaughter, this is done in the field with minimal stress to the animal. As shown in the film, the animal is killed swiftly with a gunshot it never sees coming. Farming like this benefits the earth, the animals, the birds and the bees—and all of us.

Finding High-Quality Meats

Grass-fed beef, pastured poultry, and organic pastured eggs and dairy are becoming easier to find. Larger grocery chains are jumping on the "organic band wagon," but purchasing from your local organic farmers and ranchers is preferred. Here are a few tips for finding sources near you:

  • Grass-finished beef: Many grocery chains are now responding to customer demand by providing at least a small assortment of grass-finished meats. Please be aware of the difference between grass fed and grass finished. Most all cattle are fed grass as calves, they key is what they eat the months before slaughter. If your local grocer still doesn't carry them, ask the purchasing manager to consider adding a few. Some stores, like Publix, will even stock specialty items requested by a single customer.
  • The least expensive way to obtain authentic grass-fed beef is to find a local rancher you can trust, and buy it directly from the farm. If you can't find a local source, organic grass-fed beef and other related products can be purchased online.

  • Raw organic, pastured dairy products: Getting your raw milk from a local organic farm or co-op is one of the best ways to ensure you're getting high-quality milk. You can locate a raw milk source near you at the Campaign for Real Milk Website. The Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund also provides a state-by-state review of raw milk laws.
  • Organic, free-range eggs: To locate a free-range pasture farm, try asking your local nutrition store, or check out the following web listings:
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Green Spaces Make Kids Smarter PDF Print E-mail

By Dr. Mercola

Spending time in nature is important for physical and mental health, but more than 80 percent of Americans live in urban areas,1 which can limit access to green spaces.

Research conducted in the Netherlands in 2001 revealed people report fewer health complaints and better mental health when they're in a greener environment.2 Further, all types of green space – city parks, agricultural areas, forest, etc. – were equally beneficial. As reported by The Trust for Public Land:3

"The benefits extend to psychological health. 'The concept that plants have a role in mental health is well established,' according to a review of previous studies by Howard Frumkin in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

"Horticultural therapy evolved as a form of mental health treatment, based on the therapeutic effects of gardening. It is also used today in community-based programs, geriatrics programs, prisons, developmental disabilities programs, and special education."4

Further, 'research on recreational activities has shown that savanna-like settings are associated with self-reported feelings of 'peacefulness,' 'tranquility,' or 'relaxation,'' Frumkin writes.

"Viewing such settings leads to decreased fear and anger…[and] is associated with enhanced mental alertness, attention, and cognitive performance, as measured by tasks such as proofreading and by formal psychological testing."

Such benefits also extend to children, among whom researchers recently unveiled a promising benefit of adding green spaces to schools.

Green Spaces in Schools May Boost Cognitive Development

In a study of 2,600 children between the ages of 7 and 10, those with greater exposure to green spaces, particularly while at school, had improved working memory and decreased inattentiveness.5

During a one-year period, children exposed to significant green spaces had a 5 percent increase in the development of working memory and a 1 percent decrease in inattentiveness.

A large part of the benefit (anywhere from 20 percent to 65 percent) was attributed to a reduction in exposure to air pollution as a result of the green spaces.

Access to nature and the outdoors also increases physical activity and reduces noise exposures, which are also beneficial for mental health. There's also past research that suggests "microbial input" from spending time in nature plays a role in brain development.6

A 2014 study similarly found that children attending schools with greater amounts of vegetation scored higher on academic tests in both English and math.7 The researchers of the current study explained:8

"Contact with nature is thought to play a crucial and irreplaceable role in brain development… Natural environments including green spaces provide children with unique opportunities such as inciting engagement, risk-taking, discovery, creativity, mastery and control, strengthening sense of self, inspiring basic emotional states including sense of wonder, and enhancing psychological restoration."

5 More Benefits of Spending Time in Nature

A trip to a park, nature preserve, river trail, local farm, or any other natural space can benefit children and adults alike – so much so that you should really strive to spend time in a "green" space each and every day. Such benefits include:9

1. Improving Focus

Among children with ADHD, spending time in nature leads to improvements in focus and higher scores on concentration tests. Richard Louv, in his book Last Child in the Woods, even used the term "nature-deficit disorder" to describe behavioral problems he believes stem from spending less time outdoors.10

2. Boosting Creativity

One study found walking increased 81 percent of participants' creativity, but walking outside produced "the most novel and highest quality analogies."11

3. Getting More Out of Your Workouts

"Green exercise," which is exercise in the presence of nature, has unique benefits above and beyond indoor exercise. One meta-analysis of 10 studies found that physical activity outdoors for as little as five minutes leads to measurable improvements in mood and self-esteem.12

In addition to boosting your mood, outdoor exercise can be more challenging, leading to greater physical gains. For instance, if you walk, jog or cycle outdoors, you'll have to expend more energy to overcome wind and changes in terrain.13

There's even research showing levels of the stress hormone cortisol are lower when people exercise outdoors as opposed to indoors.14

4. Less Pain and Better Sleep

Older adults who spend more time outdoors have less pain, sleep better and have less functional decline in their ability to carry out their daily activities.15 According to research published in Biopsychosocial Medicine:16

"The healing power of nature, vis medicatrix naturae, has traditionally been defined as an internal healing response designed to restore health.

 Almost a century ago, famed biologist Sir John Arthur Thomson provided an additional interpretation of the word nature within the context of vis medicatrix, defining it instead as the natural, non-built external environment.

He maintained that the healing power of nature is also that associated with mindful contact with the animate and inanimate natural portions of the outdoor environment.

…With global environmental concerns, rapid urban expansion, and mental health disorders at crisis levels, diminished nature contact may not be without consequence to the health of the individual and the planet itself."

5. Increasing Your Vitamin D Levels

Spending time in nature allows kids and adults plenty of sun exposure to build and maintain their vitamin D levels. Increasing your vitamin D levels is important, as researchers have pointed out that increasing levels of vitamin D3 among the general population could prevent chronic diseases that claim nearly one million lives throughout the world each year.

Incidence of several types of cancer could also be slashed in half. Vitamin D also fights infections, including colds and the flu, as it regulates the expression of genes that influence your immune system to attack and destroy bacteria and viruses.

I firmly believe appropriate sun exposure is the best way to optimize your vitamin D levels, and the more time you spend outdoors, the easier it will be for you to naturally keep your vitamin D levels in the therapeutic range of 50-70 ng/ml.

Spending Time in Green Spaces Contributes to Improved Well-Being

According to research published in the Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, children who spent five to 10 hours a week outside developed a strong attachment to nature, a value that is important to both human development and well-being.17

Children who spent a lot of time outdoors also experienced a wealth of positive emotions, including peacefulness, happiness, and a sense of belonging to the world. As you might suspect, parents of children with the strongest connections to nature also spent a lot of time outdoors during childhood, engaging in experiences that they believe helped to shape their adult lives and spirituality.

The National Wildlife Federation (NWF) even compiled a revealing list of facts that shows just how important outdoor time in green space is for children… and how detrimental removing this inherent connection to nature may be.18

For the record, nature's benefits don't discriminate. They're equally relevant to children and adults alike, with research showing people with access to nature have better health, increased levels of satisfaction, lower stress, and greater well-being.

Outdoor play increases fitness levels, fights obesity, and builds healthy bodies. Spending time outside raises levels of vitamin D, helping to protect children from heart disease, diabetes, bone problems, and more. Time outdoors improves distance vision and lowers the chance of nearsightedness.
Schools with environmental education programs score higher on standardized tests in math, reading, writing, and listening. Exposure to environment-based education improves students' critical thinking skills. Children's stress levels fall within minutes of seeing green spaces.
Play protects children's emotional development while loss of free time and a hurried lifestyle may lead to anxiety and depression. Nature makes people nicer, enhances social interactions, and improves value for community and close relationships.

The Impact of Green Space on Your Brain

Connecting with nature can help your mental health in a myriad of ways. A systematic review examined the impact of gardens and outdoor spaces on the mental and physical well-being of people with dementia, for instance. The research suggested that garden use, whether it be watering plants, walking through a garden or sitting in one, lead to decreased levels of agitation or anxiety among the patients.19 Interestingly, while spending time in a green garden may help relieve some dementia symptoms, it may also help to reduce your risk of developing dementia in the first place. As reported by CNN:20

"Two separate studies that followed people in their 60s and 70s for up to 16 years found, respectively, that those who gardened regularly had a 36 percent and 47 percent lower risk of dementia than non-gardeners, even when a range of other health factors were taken into account. These findings are hardly definitive, but they suggest that the combination of physical and mental activity involved in gardening may have a positive influence on the mind."

Meanwhile, Mycobacterium vaccae is a type of bacteria commonly found in soil. Remarkably, this microbe has been found to "mirror the effect on neurons that drugs like Prozac provide."21 It helps to stimulate serotonin production, helping to make you feel happier and more relaxed. In one animal study, mice that ingested Mycobacterium vaccae had a demonstrated reduction in anxiety and improved learning. The researchers noted that natural exposure to microbes by spending time outdoors may be important for emotional health and behavior: 22

"Recent studies show that contact with tolerogenic microbes is important for the proper functioning of immunoregulatory circuits affecting behavior, emotionality and health… Collectively, our results suggest a beneficial effect of naturally delivered, live M. vaccae on anxiety-related behaviors … supporting a positive role for ambient microbes in the immunomodulation of animal behavior."

Green Space Is Great for Grounding

The next time you go outdoors, take off your shoes and spend some time walking barefoot in the grass, sand or mud. The Earth carries an enormous negative charge. It's always electron-rich and can serve as a powerful and abundant supply of antioxidant and free-radical-busting electrons. Your body is finely tuned to "work" with the Earth in the sense that there's a constant flow of energy between your body and the Earth. When you put your bare feet on the ground, you absorb large amounts of negative electrons through the soles of your feet.

The effect is sufficient to maintain your body at the same negatively charged electrical potential as the Earth. This simple process is called "grounding" or "earthing," and its effect is one of the most potent antioxidants we know of. Grounding has been shown to relieve pain, reduce inflammation, improve sleep, enhance wellbeing, and much, much more. When you wear rubber- or plastic-soled shoes, however, you are effectively shielding yourself from this beneficial influx of electrons from the Earth.

Simply by getting outside, barefoot, touching the Earth, and allowing the excess charge in your body to discharge into the Earth, you can alleviate some of the stress continually put on your system. Walking barefoot can help ameliorate the constant assault of electromagnetic fields and other types of radiation from cell phones, computers, and Wi-Fi. It's also thought that grounding may actually facilitate the formation of structured water in your body.

Furthermore, grounding also calms your sympathetic nervous system, which supports your heart rate variability. And, when you support heart rate variability, this promotes homeostasis, or balance, in your autonomic nervous system. This is important because anytime you improve your heart rate variability, you're improving your entire body and all its functions.

Be a Role Model to Help Your Child Spend More Time in Green Spaces

Your kids are watching your every move, and if they see you enjoying the great outdoors, they will too. Encourage your children to engage in activities that are naturally interesting to them, such as playing on the monkey bars, rollerblading, skateboarding, playing basketball with friends, or helping you in the garden. Organized sports are great, but so are spontaneous romps through mud puddles, climbing trees, and spotting frogs in a nearby creek.

Opportunities to grow and appreciate nature are everywhere, so try to encourage your child's natural curiosity and sense of exploration by identifying birds on the way to the bus stop, talking about the insects you see around your yard, or helping your child plant a small flower or vegetable garden. Above all, resist the urge to overly structure your child's outdoor time, instead encouraging natural active play, time together as a family, as well as respect and appreciation for the outdoor world.

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By Dr. Mercola Conflicts of interest have become more the rule than the occasional exception. Even the trusted US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) receives heavy funding from industry. How this conflict
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Studies on Hydration Suggest Dehydrated Drivers May Pose Hazard on the Road, and Majority of Children Don’t Drink Enough Water
By Dr. Mercola Drinking pure water every day is a key component of optimal health. Unfortunately, many make the mistake of forgoing water for other types of fluids, most of which have added ingredients that will not do your
Read More 58 Hits 0 Ratings
Top Summer Foods for Health 03 July 2015, 19.36 Health
Top Summer Foods for Health
By Dr. Mercola In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), yin and yang refer to opposite elements or forces in nature, which, when balanced, promote harmony. Qi is a type of universal energy, and both yin and yang are
Read More 59 Hits 0 Ratings
Anti-Cancer Benefits of Avocado 03 July 2015, 19.36 Health
Anti-Cancer Benefits of Avocado
By Dr. Mercola Avocados are one of the healthiest foods you can eat. Personally, I eat one almost every day. If you're an avocado fan, which 60 percent of Americans claim to be,1 you're probably aware that they're an
Read More 71 Hits 0 Ratings
Chili Garlic Ginger Shrimp Recipe 03 July 2015, 19.36 Health
Chili Garlic Ginger Shrimp Recipe
By Dr. Mercola I have cautioned against consuming most seafood due to the potential of having widespread contamination. Many varieties of fish today come from polluted waters and are tainted with mercury, PCBs, and other
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Vitamin K2: The Missing Nutrient for Heart and Bone Health
By Dr. Mercola Most everyone, including many conventional physicians, have begun to appreciate the importance and value of vitamin D. Few, however, recognize the importance of vitamin K2, which is nearly as important as
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A 4th Grader's Short Documentary About School Lunch
By Dr. Mercola Zachary Maxell was not your ordinary fourth grader. Zachary became disenchanted with the school lunches at his large public elementary school in New York City. Every morning, he read the mouth-watering
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What Secrets Are Revealed in City Sewage About Health
By Dr. Mercola Your body is teeming with bacteria, fungi, viruses, and other microbes that together make up your microbial inner ecosystem, or microflora. Your body actually contains about 100 trillion cells, but
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Film Covers the Many Dangers of the Cheap Meat Industry
By Dr. Mercola For several decades, Americans have enjoyed paying low prices for meat at the grocery store. Unfortunately, many are unaware of the hidden costs of "cheap meat"—and when you add them up, they are
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Green Spaces Make Kids Smarter 03 July 2015, 19.36 Health
Green Spaces Make Kids Smarter
By Dr. Mercola Spending time in nature is important for physical and mental health, but more than 80 percent of Americans live in urban areas,1 which can limit access to green spaces. Research conducted in the
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Social Anxiety Disorder Linked to High Serotonin Levels, Throwing Treatment with SSRIs into Serious Question
By Dr. Mercola Depression and other mental health problems are at epidemic levels judging by the number of antidepressants prescribed each year. According to CDC data,1 one in 20 Americans over the age of 12 report
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10 Surprising Ways You Are Making Your Vegetables Less Nutritious
By Dr. Mercola Modern-day diets are often lacking in nutrition, in large part because food choices are not optimal. About 90 percent of the money Americans spend on food is for processed foods, which may be fortified with
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7 Top "Healthy" Foods to Avoid 03 July 2015, 19.36 Health
7 Top "Healthy" Foods to Avoid
By Dr. Mercola In a global survey of more than 27,000 people, 26 percent reported that confusion about which foods are healthy was a major barrier to eating right.1 That confusion is only compounded upon because many of the
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Consumer Protection Group Applauds FDA Ban on Trans Fats, but Undermines GMO Labeling Movement...
By Dr. Mercola For the past six decades, saturated fat and cholesterol have been wrongfully vilified as the culprits of heart disease. Research shows it's actually refined carbs, sugar, and trans fats found in processed
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Ice Cream, We All Scream 26 May 2015, 17.18 Health
Ice Cream, We All Scream
By Dr. Mercola In the last year, three people have died and 10 more have become ill due to listeria bacteria in Blue Bell ice cream products. Texas-based Blue Bell Creameries is the fourth largest ice cream maker in the
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Sorting Out Medical Advice from Medical Nonsense
By Dr. Mercola There’s so much confusion regarding health information in the media. How do you determine which advice to follow and what to take with a grain of salt? Dr. Malcolm Kendrick wrote the book Doctoring Data: How
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See How Quickly Eating Organic Can Rid Your Body of Pesticides
By Dr. Mercola In order to qualify as organic, a product must be grown and processed using organic farming methods that recycle resources and promote biodiversity. Crops must be grown without synthetic pesticides,
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Completely New Models of Dementia Care Are Emerging Across the Globe
By Dr. Mercola The documentary special "Dementia—The Unspooling Mind" explores innovative models of care for dementia sufferers in Thailand and the Netherlands. These unique residential complexes are the result of
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Key Strategies for Optimizing Your Sleep 26 May 2015, 17.17 Health
Key Strategies for Optimizing Your Sleep
By Dr. Mercola Are you tired of being tired? If you feel sleepy during the day, there’s a good chance you need to get more sleep or better quality sleep. Even if you think you can “get by” on five or six hours a
Read More 115 Hits 0 Ratings
Flame Retardants Do More Harm Than Good, Research Shows
By Dr. Mercola Common household items such as couch cushions, carpeting, mattresses, and electronics can be a source of exposure to toxic flame retardant chemicals in your day-to-day life. Many of these chemicals have been
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Just One Hour of This Daily Can Make You Obese
By Dr. Mercola In the US, more than one-third of children and adolescents are overweight or obese. Physical inactivity, and particularly watching TV, which exposes children to junk-food commercials and presents a prime
Read More 115 Hits 0 Ratings
The Not So Secret Truth About Yogurt 26 May 2015, 17.17 Health
The Not So Secret Truth About Yogurt
By Dr. Mercola Yogurt can be incredibly healthy, rich in high-quality protein, beneficial probiotics, calcium, B vitamins and, even cancer-fighting conjugated linoleic acid (CLA). But the key words are "can be." Most
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Avian Flu Outbreak Among Chickens—What This Disaster Can Tell Us About Our Food Production
By Dr. Mercola Three large egg-producing states in the US are in the midst of an avian flu outbreak. Iowa—where about 20 percent of all US eggs are produced—declared a state of emergency on May 1.1 Minnesota and
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Monsanto Bids to Take Over Syngenta—A Move to Assure a Pesticide-Saturated Future?
By Dr. Mercola Monsanto recently made a bid to take over European agrichemical giant Syngenta, the world’s largest pesticide producer. The $45 billion bid was rejected, but there’s still a chance for a merger
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US Honeybee Losses Soar Over Last Year, USDA Finds
By Dr. Mercola A world without bees would be a very different place. Bees are pollinators – and critical ones at that. Of the 100 different crops that make up 90 percent of the world’s diet, bees pollinate 70.
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More Consensus on the Health Benefits of Tea and Coffee
By Dr. Mercola For the first time, a government advisory committee included a mention of caffeine in its recommendations for the 2015 edition of Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Rather than suggesting it be eliminated,
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This Natural Bug Repellent Works Better Than Deet
By Dr. Mercola Biting insects can put a damper on your summer fun, not to mention potentially transmit diseases like Lyme disease and West Nile Virus. The majority of US adults (75 percent) said they are actually more
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Vitamins That Reduce Your Risk of Skin Cancer
By Dr. Mercola If you’re like most people, you’ve probably fallen for the misguided advice from most dermatologists and public health officials to stay out of the sun to avoid skin cancer. Unfortunately, total sun
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Eggplant Sandwich Recipe 26 May 2015, 17.17 Health
Eggplant Sandwich Recipe
By Dr. Mercola If you’ve been on a no-grain diet for quite some time now and have been missing the lip-smacking goodness of sandwiches in your mouth, here’s an exciting recipe you should try right away. You can now
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Four Routes of Exposure to Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria: Medicine, Food, Water, and Air
By Dr. Mercola American livestock farmers use nearly 30 million pounds of antibiotics each year in the raising of their animals.1,2 Most of these are raised in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs)—gigantic factory
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Troubling Revelations: Roundup Herbicide Worsens Antibiotic-Resistance Already Fueled by Factory Farming
By Dr. Mercola Scientific evidence demonstrating the harms associated with chemical-based agriculture and attendant confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs) have stacked up fast and furiously over the past several weeks
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How a Terminal Illness Can Change Your Perception of Time
By Dr. Mercola "Clocks are now kind of irrelevant to me … time, where it used to have sort of a linear progression, now feels more like a space," said Paul Kalanithi, a neurosurgeon, writer, father, and husband, after
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Diet Soda Adds Inches to the Waist of Seniors, Researchers Say
By Dr. Mercola Recent research again confirms what many previous studies have concluded: diet soda tends to promote weight gain rather than prevent it. In this study1,2,3,4,5,6 diet soda consumption was linked to
Read More 169 Hits 0 Ratings
Nearly Half a Million Babies Die from Poor Hygiene
By Dr. Mercola Simple interventions to improve hygiene, such as access to safe water, toilets and soap, could prevent one in five newborn deaths in the developing world. The sobering finding comes from the non-profit
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How to Burn Body Fat in Your Sleep 13 April 2015, 23.28 Health
How to Burn Body Fat in Your Sleep
By Dr. Mercola Studies have shown that in general, the optimal room temperature for sleeping is quite cool, around 60 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit, and temperatures much above or below this range can lead to
Read More 117 Hits 0 Ratings
Michael Mosley: Why I Consumed My Own Blood 13 April 2015, 23.28 Health
Michael Mosley: Why I Consumed My Own Blood
By Dr. Mercola Dr. Michael Mosley, a physician like me and also a journalist for BBC in the UK, is no stranger to trying out new techniques he believes might benefit his health. He has gone from being overweight,
Read More 152 Hits 0 Ratings
‘Super Juice Me’ Documents Profound Healing Effects of Juicing
This film was proudly brought to you by FMTV, the Netflix® for Nutrition and Health. Want to LEARN how to improve your health with thought-provoking documentaries and interviews featuring the world's leading health and
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Cannabis for the Treatment of Epilepsy, and More
By Dr. Mercola Many drugs are developed not because there's a great medical need, but rather because there's big money to be made from them. In many cases, holistic therapies and medicines already exist that can
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Braised Beef Moroccan Style Recipe 13 April 2015, 23.28 Health
Braised Beef Moroccan Style Recipe
By Dr. Mercola Treat your whole family to this mouthwatering Moroccan-inspired dish that will definitely earn you a two thumbs up. Made only with the most nutritious choice ingredients, here’s my Braised Beef Moroccan
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What You Need to Know About Trade Agreements and Fast Track
By Dr. Mercola Ben Lilliston is the Vice President of Program at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. In this video, Lilliston discusses an issue that is rarely reported in the mainstream media, and poorly
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The Worst Foods to Eat When You're Sick, and the Best Ones
By Dr. Mercola When you're sick, you body needs special care, not only in the form of extra rest but also in the foods you eat. Choosing foods carefully can help you to feel better faster, and is crucial because, although
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Eat Right to Protect Your Eyesight 13 April 2015, 23.28 Health
Eat Right to Protect Your Eyesight
By Dr. Mercola While most accept deteriorating vision as a natural part of aging, it's really more of a side effect of our modern lifestyle. Aging does not automatically equate to failing vision, provided you've properly
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30 Healthiest Foods of All Time 13 April 2015, 23.28 Health
30 Healthiest Foods of All Time
By Dr. Mercola In a survey of at-home spending patterns on food among US households, the Economic Research Service (ERS) of the US Department of Agriculture revealed Americans are throwing a lot of their food budgets
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Researchers Keep Finding More Ways Our Flawed Agriculture Model Breeds Antibiotic Resistance
By Dr. Mercola American farmers routinely use antibiotics to make their livestock grow bigger and faster (in addition to preventing disease caused by cramped, filthy quarters, and an unnatural diet). As a result of
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Cluster of Black Dwellings Grouped Around a Central Courtyard: House in Colbost
Collect this idea Envisioned by Glasgow-based firm Dualchas Architects, House in Colbust is a project located on Waternish, a peninsula on the island of Skye, Scotland. According to the architects, its design is “directly
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Cabin-Style Refuge Mirroring a Perfect Landscape: Saturna Island Retreat
Collect this idea Located on an oceanfront property in British Columbia, Canada, the Saturna Island Retreat is a a contemporary getaway providing comfort on many levels. The cabin-style residence discovered on Sotheby’s
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Peaceful Rock River House Neighboring a Forest Reserve in Illinois, USA
Collect this idea Rock River House in Rockton, Illinois, USA is a modern residence completed by Bruns Architecture in a scenic environment. The new building is located near the bend of a meandering river and next to a
Read More 332 Hits 0 Ratings
Inspiring Display of Natural Textures: Nairn Road Residence in Dorset, England
Collect this idea Designed by David James Architects in Dorset, England, Nairn Road Residence displays a sober modern exterior appearance. The blend of stone, render, glass and aluminium making up the street facade creates
Read More 603 Hits 0 Ratings
Fresh Canadian Home Renovation Inviting Light Inside
Collect this idea Springtime brings about not only seasonal changes, but opportunities for home renovation projects. Canada’s season changes are better enjoyed from a home that carries an old charm while flaunting
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Pine Nut Benefits: 5 Ways This Nutritious Seed Can Rejuvenate Your Body
By Dr. Mercola Pine nuts have been enjoyed since ancient times. Roman soldiers ate them and they’ve been mentioned by Greek authors as early as 300 BC.1 Nutritionally speaking, pine nuts contain many of the same healthy
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How Avocado Can Help Improve Your Cholesterol, Heart, and Brain Health
By Dr. Mercola Avocados are an excellent source of heart-healthy monounsaturated fat that is easily burned for energy, while being low in fructose. Not surprisingly, improved weight management1,2 is one of the health
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Magnesium: An Invisible Deficiency That Could Be Harming Your Health
By Dr. Mercola Magnesium is a mineral used by every organ in your body, especially your heart, muscles, and kidneys.1 If you suffer from unexplained fatigue or weakness, abnormal heart rhythms or even muscle spasms and
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The Forgotten History of Vaccinations You Need to Be Aware Of
By Dr. Mercola Vaccines are one of the most controversial medical therapies, and it's impossible to make an informed decision unless you know both sides of the story. In the process of knowing both sides, the historical
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Chicken Soup with Lentils 24 January 2015, 00.27 Health
Chicken Soup with Lentils
By Dr. Mercola There is perhaps no more comforting food than a warm bowl of chicken soup, but the benefits are not only to your psyche. Chicken soup has been used as a remedy for the common cold since at least the 12th
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Documentary Film Explores the Enormous Price We Pay for Ignoring the Need for Sleep
By Dr. Mercola According to the documentary, Sleepless in America, coproduced by the National Geographic Channel, 40 percent of Americans are sleep deprived. Many get less than five hours of sleep per night.
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Fat Beneath Skin May Ward Off Infections 24 January 2015, 00.27 Health
Fat Beneath Skin May Ward Off Infections
By Dr. Mercola When you get a cut or a scratch, what keeps invading bacteria from making you sick? Specialized immune-system cells called neutrophils and monocytes ultimately arrive at the scene, gobbling up pathogens.
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Documentary “Shots in the Dark” Delves into Catastrophic Vaccine Reactions
By Dr. Mercola As a result of today's skyrocketing rates of chronic disease and disability among children, including autism, some scientists are questioning the safety of large-scale vaccination programs. In spite of
Read More 158 Hits 0 Ratings
Health Tips from a Grizzly 24 January 2015, 00.27 Health
Health Tips from a Grizzly
By Dr. Mercola Hibernation is a survival mechanism that keeps certain animals alive through the winter months. Even when temperatures become freezing and food and water are scarce, hibernating animals barely notice as they
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The Year in Sleep 24 January 2015, 00.27 Health
The Year in Sleep
By Dr. Mercola Considering how important sleep is for survival, very little is known about how much sleep humans actually get each night. There are surveys that have been done, of course, but most of these rely on
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Advances in Understanding of Depression Offers New Hope
By Dr. Mercola Depression is thought to affect about one in 10 Americans.1 In 2010, antidepressants were the second most commonly prescribed type of medication in the US,2 hinting at the severity of the problem. Contrary to
Read More 158 Hits 0 Ratings
Corn Syrup Is More Toxic Than Refined Sugar, Researchers Conclude
By Dr. Mercola Dr. Robert Lustig, Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology at the University of California, has been a pioneer in decoding sugar metabolism. He’s become quite well-known in recent
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Scrutiny for Laxatives as a Childhood Remedy 24 January 2015, 00.27 Health
Scrutiny for Laxatives as a Childhood Remedy
By Dr. Mercola Laxatives with the active ingredient polyethylene glycol 3350 (PEG 3350), the most popular of which is Miralax, are commonly given to children with constipation. Some of these children end up using the drug
Read More 155 Hits 0 Ratings
Another Epic Fail for Influenza Vaccine 24 January 2015, 00.27 Health
Another Epic Fail for Influenza Vaccine
By Barbara Loe Fisher Here we are in the winter of 2015, and U.S. public health officials admit that the historically ineffective influenza vaccine is once again an epic fail.1,2 Flu Vaccine Effectiveness Measured
Read More 135 Hits 0 Ratings
Flame Retardants and DEET Now in Swimming Pools 24 January 2015, 00.27 Health
Flame Retardants and DEET Now in Swimming Pools
By Dr. Mercola About 75 percent of California residents have flame-retardant chemicals in their bodies, according to a late 2014 study.1 Many of them had no less than six different kinds, including one (chlorinated tris, or
Read More 140 Hits 0 Ratings
Vintage Looking Noveltree Bookshelf Ladder Inspired by Classic Libraries
Collect this idea Inspired by classic libraries which often hold towering high shelves to store the vast amount of old literature, the Noveltree by Nieuwe Heren is our star design project for the day. The books that are
Read More 375 Hits 0 Ratings
Surprising Modern Deronda Residence Located Just Below the Hollywood Sign
Collect this idea Deronda Residence is an imposing family home located near the apex of Beachwood Canyon, in the Hollywood Hills in Los Angeles, California. According to the architects at Space International, the project
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Connecting Three Historic Dwellings with a Modern Extension: Inspiring House in Vexin
Collect this idea Recently completed by French architect Jean-Philippe Doré, House in Vexin is an inspiring project that connects three historic homes with a modern extension. One of the main challenges was to renovate
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Hidden Illustrations Revealed Under UV Lighting by Canada’s Newest Passport Designs
Collect this idea For those interested in design and its infinite possibilities, have a look at these Canadian passports and their surprising security feature! Canada’s newest passport designs may look common at a first
Read More 342 Hits 0 Ratings
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Should You Go Vegetarian to Control Your Blood Pressure?:     According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), high blood pressure is "the second greatest public health threat" in the US, and about half of all with hyperten...
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