Archive for March, 2010

Natural Bone Builders

March 12, 2010 Written by JP

Some alt-med experts are suspicious of mainstream medical publications such as the The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). They generally believe that such periodicals are firmly in the camp or even in the pocket of allopathic medicine. While there may be some truth to that, it’s also accurate to say that unbiased articles do occasionally appear in these same journals that are often criticized. Read the following quote and tell me if it sounds like it belongs in a publication whose primary purpose is to support the existing medical and pharmaceutical paradigm: “The current drug-labeling practice for adverse events is based on the implicit assumption that an accurate portrait of patients’ subjective experiences can be provided by clinicians’ documentation alone. Yet a substantial body of evidence contradicts this assumption, showing that clinicians systematically downgrade the severity of patients’ symptoms, that patients’ self-reports frequently capture side effects that clinicians miss, and that clinicians’ failure to note these symptoms results in the occurrence of preventable adverse events”. That quote is taken directly from a current analysis entitled, “The Missing Voice of Patients in Drug-Safety Reporting” which is presented in the March 10th online edition of the NEJM. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Bone and Joint Health, Nutritional Supplements | 16 Comments & Updates

Coffee Surprises

March 11, 2010 Written by JP

Information is one of the greatest assets if you want to be a good conversationalist. This is especially true of dialogues that involve health and nutrition. The more you know about such topics the more interesting the conversations will be for all involved. Let’s take today’s topic as an example – coffee. Many physicians continue to promote the idea that coffee should generally be avoided or at least used sparingly. The basis for this position varies widely, but it often involves a proposed risk to the cardiovascular system and the possibility of adverse effects on sleep quality. In recent years, some other medical authorities have adopted an alternate point of view and crowned coffee as a healthy elixir. Listening to physicians on both sides of the coffee debate can be quite interesting. But actually taking part in that kind of exchange is very different situation. Read more »

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Posted in Bone and Joint Health, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 13 Comments & Updates

Acupressure News and Reviews

March 10, 2010 Written by JP

Prospective consumers tend to categorize alternative and complementary therapies on a subconscious level. The fact of the matter is that some holistic techniques seem more reasonable than others. This is often a consequence of the culture and medical care to which we’ve been exposed throughout our lives. Human nature generally dictates that we gravitate to that which is familiar. With that in mind, allow me to suggest that esoteric healing techniques afford something rather profound to us all: an opportunity to expand our horizons and experience the world in a broader context. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Heart Health, Women's Health | 7 Comments & Updates

Nutrient Density

March 9, 2010 Written by JP

Several weeks ago I posted a link on Twitter about the benefits of drinking water on weight loss. One response I received essentially asked, “Doesn’t everyone know that drinking water helps you lose weight?”. Well, I suppose many people do. But this reader’s question may reflect similar thoughts you’ve had while reading my daily blogs. You may detect familiar ground in some of the issues I cover. In fact, at times I even point out that I’m updating a particular health issue. The reason I do this may not be entirely clear. Scientists generally like to re-test widely held beliefs in order to clarify and verify them. Even the most widely accepted concepts in medicine benefit from further investigation. The result of such inquiries often add to the knowledge base and allow for a more accurate application of the information in question. Read more »

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Posted in Diabetes, Heart Health, Nutrition | 7 Comments & Updates

Natural Alternative for Impotence

March 8, 2010 Written by JP

We’ve all seen commercials for prescription medications on television. The images on the screen are always very optimistic and pleasing to the eye. Not surprisingly, they give the impression that the advertised drug will make you feel happier and generally improve the quality of your life. However, the accompanying narration often paints a vastly different picture. Take, for instance, commercials for medications that address erectile dysfunction. The couples portrayed in the ads seem like they couldn’t be happier or more satisfied in every conceivable way. Perhaps that’s because they haven’t personally encountered the headaches, loss of color vision or muscle aches that sometimes occur in regular users of these drugs. Read more »

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Posted in Men's Health | 4 Comments & Updates

Patient Specialists

March 5, 2010 Written by JP

Most of us use a general practitioner as our primary health provider. It doesn’t make much sense to go to a specialist such as an endocrinologist or neurologist when you’re simply having your periodic check up. Generally speaking, a good G.P. can manage most general health needs. At the same time, doctors and patients alike realize that such physicians have their limitations. They can’t possibly be up-to-date on every new development in every field of medicine, so they refer patients to specialists whenever needed. The same is true of how consumers can approach their own health care. If you’re basically healthy, you may want to focus on staying informed on how to maintain good general health. However, if you’re trying to address specific health issues, then you’ll need to become a “patient specialist”. Read more »

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Posted in Diabetes, Men's Health, Nutrition | 2 Comments & Updates

Meditation Brain

March 4, 2010 Written by JP

One of the most valuable tools we all have at our disposal is perspective. But this vision needs to fine tuned in order to support our efforts rather than sabotage them. We’ve all heard variations of the maxim – “Obtaining anything of value requires some effort”. That’s great as far as it goes. However, there’s more to the following equation: good values + hard work = a rewarding life. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Memory, Mental Health | 28 Comments & Updates

Hospital Makeovers

March 3, 2010 Written by JP

I happened to hear a segment on the radio program “Marketplace” while driving in my car the other day. The piece that caught my attention was entitled, “The Cure: Remaking Health Care”. The focus of this National Public Radio report was the San Diego-based Sharp Memorial Hospital, a $200 million facility that was built using the principles of “evidence-based design”. But can design alone be responsible for improving health outcomes in patients and saving millions, maybe even billions in healthcare costs down the line? Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Heart Health, Mental Health | 5 Comments & Updates

Gluten Free Bread

March 2, 2010 Written by JP

When it comes to living a healthy lifestyle, it’s one thing to be told what you’re supposed to do and quite another to know exactly how to do it. One recommendation that is commonly made by doctors and nutritionists is to eat more dietary fiber. According to The National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine, men under the age of 50 should consume an average of 38 grams of fiber per day. Women in the same age group are supposed to strive for 25 grams. These figures are slightly lower for individuals above the age of 50, but they still far exceed what most people typically consume. Today’s column provides some new evidence that will hopefully nudge you into eating more fiber-rich foods, as well as a very simple way to meet your daily fiber quota. Read more »

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Posted in Heart Health, Nutrition | 4 Comments & Updates

Coffee Pros and Cons

March 1, 2010 Written by JP

Many years ago I attended a health conference where Dr. Julian Whitaker was giving the key note presentation. He mentioned that he was a strong believer in choosing at least one healthy habit and practicing it every day. In his case, Dr. Whitaker mentioned eating an apple once daily without fail. His reason for doing so was more than the obvious “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” philosophy. The broader point he was trying to make is that engaging in healthy lifestyle choices and/or eating nutritious food works best if we do it religiously. Sometimes having a specific goal in mind can assist us in doing just that. Read more »

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Heart Health | 20 Comments & Updates