Archive for April, 2011

Pumpkin Pecan Muffins Recipe

April 29, 2011 Written by JP

I was recently interviewed about the role of natural medicine in the context of health care spending. One question posed inquired about which remedies I thought should be integrated into modern medicine in order to save lives and money. My answer was a surprise to the interviewer. “I think nutritional experts should reach out to leaders of their respective communities and explain the importance of eating a nutrient-dense, whole food breakfast”. I went on to point out that five recent studies directly linked eating breakfast to: a) lower concentrations of lead in the blood; b) reduced likelihood of overweight and; c) improved cognitive functioning. The majority of this research focused on adolescents and young children. Imagine the financial ramifications of dramatically lowering obesity/overeating and the medical management thereof in the youth population alone. Now, add to the picture the academic and economic value to society if more children improved scholastic performance due to healthier nutrition and protection from lead toxicity. (1,2,3,4,5)
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Posted in Children's Health, Nutrition, Recipes | 6 Comments & Updates

Sage Medicine

April 27, 2011 Written by JP

Figures just released by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics report that over 94 million prescriptions for Zocor (simvastatin), a cholesterol-lowering medication, were written in 2010. Crestor and Lipitor, two other statin drugs used to reduce lipids, registered sales of $3.8 and $7.2 billion respectively last year. Salvia officinalis or sage is unlikely to pose much competition to these powerhouse medications. However, a select group of integrative and naturopathic physicians are taking note that this common culinary herb may have much to offer as an alternative and/or complementary treatment option. (1) Read more »

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Posted in Heart Health, Memory, Nutritional Supplements | 9 Comments & Updates

Egg Controversy

April 25, 2011 Written by JP

A reader recently inquired about why I use so many eggs in the recipes I post on this site. After all, eggs contain a considerable amount of cholesterol and saturated fat. Some medical authorities claim that these┬ádietary components are harmful to the cardiovascular system. In fact, if you browse through the scientific literature you’ll find plenty of reason for pause with respect to eating eggs as a regular part of your diet. And if you happen to be “at risk” for heart disease, forget about it! Don’t even look at eggs! But as is often the case, first impressions don’t always tell the entire story. Read more »

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Posted in Diabetes, Heart Health, Nutrition | 29 Comments & Updates

Quality of Aging

April 22, 2011 Written by JP

Throughout history there have been many wise and witty sayings about growing older. Here are a few of my favorites: “Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” Mark Twain; “Life’s tragedy is that we get old too soon and wise too late.” Benjamin Franklin; “The minute a man ceases to grow, no matter what his years, that minute he begins to be old.” William James. Some of the changes that occur with advancing age cannot be avoided entirely. But I believe there’s such a thing as “quality of aging” as well as “quality of life”. What’s more, we can all affect the manner and pace by which our bodies reflect our biological years. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Bone and Joint Health, Memory | 21 Comments & Updates

Overcoming Food Cravings

April 20, 2011 Written by JP

There are numerous ways of dealing with food cravings. Last week, I mentioned one practical option which is to make a healthier version of the food you’re lusting after – such as birthday cake. But ultimately the most assured way of avoiding dietary disaster is to gain true control over your compulsion for foods that cause you harm. This isn’t an indictment of an occasional treat or exception to your dietary rules. However, in many instances, food cravings aren’t that innocuous. They can quite literally lead to the derailment of important health goals. It doesn’t need to be that way. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Diet and Weight Loss, Nutritional Supplements | 6 Comments & Updates

Aerobic Interval Training

April 18, 2011 Written by JP

Aerobic interval training is by far my favorite form of cardiovascular exercise. It doesn’t matter if I’m on a treadmill, in the gym or walking on the beach. I could be alone or training a group of clients. The bottom line is that if I’m working out, part of my routine is almost certainly composed of walking at variable inclines and speeds. That’s essentially what aerobic interval training (AIT) is. Instead of walking at a constant pace for prolonged periods of time, you simply push yourself to walk faster/harder for shorter intervals followed by less intense intervals in between. Read more »

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

Be Supplement Savvy

April 15, 2011 Written by JP

Walking down the miles of aisles of nutritional supplements in any given health food store is enough to intimidate almost anyone. Which brand do you choose? How much should you take? Do you ask for advice from the on-site “supplement expert” or “go with your gut”? The best rule of thumb is to never shop for something of importance without first preparing. Nutritional supplements, when used in an informed and judicious manner, have the potential to impact your health in a decidedly positive manner. But if you don’t do your homework ahead of time then you’re essentially gambling with your health. This often means wasting time and money. And, worse, it could even mean that you’re inadvertently endangering your health. Read more »

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutritional Supplements | 8 Comments & Updates

Healthier Birthday Cake Recipe

April 13, 2011 Written by JP

One of the most frequent questions I’m asked with regard to my diet is whether or not I miss eating certain “restricted” foods. When addressing this issue I always begin by clarifying that I can eat anything I want. However, I choose to avoid certain foods that I think are counterproductive to my good health. It’s a fine distinction, but an important one. It emphasizes a personal decision or will power rather than simply adhering to a defined restriction or following a dogmatic rule lockstep. Getting back to the initial question, yes, I do occasionally crave foods from my past which I now choose to avoid. And I’m not the only one. Recently, I noticed that Mrs. Healthy Fellow had been longing for something special that we both hadn’t indulged in for a very long time – cake. It just so happened that Mrs. HF had a birthday this past weekend. The following is the exact birthday cake I made for this glorious celebration.
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Posted in Food and Drink, Nutrition, Recipes | 10 Comments & Updates

Natural Health News April 2011

April 11, 2011 Written by JP

Experts in various fields, including medicine, take part in continuing education courses on a regular basis. The aim of these post-university classes and seminars is to inform professionals about the newest and most relevant developments in their areas of expertise. I hope to do the very same thing here. Except in this case, my aim is to provide breaking news and research about natural medicine that will allow you to stand head and shoulders above most other health care consumers. And then, of course, I’m counting on you to share what you’ve learned with anyone who will listen.
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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Nutrition, Women's Health | 10 Comments & Updates

Uterine Fibroids – A Natural Approach

April 8, 2011 Written by JP

There are a great many gaps of knowledge in the field of natural medicine. A plethora of hypotheses abound, but hard data pertaining to serious medical conditions is often difficult to come by. This unfortunate reality places patients and physicians in a decidedly awkward position. Some choose to wait until more evidence of higher quality presents itself. Others apply the admittedly incomplete or preliminary information currently available as best they can. To my mind, a balance between these two camps is generally the most judicious way to proceed. My ideal approach is to keep an eye out for breaking new research and, at the same time, use the evidence that’s currently available when putting together an integrative plan of action. Read more »

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Mental Health, Women's Health | 9 Comments & Updates

Argentinian Health Trends

April 6, 2011 Written by JP

This past week, Mrs. Healthy Fellow and I had the pleasure of visiting Buenos Aires in Argentina. Our brief time in this complex and intriguing metropolitan area gave us a glimpse into the generous nature of the Argentinian people or “Portenos”, and the distant and recent history that influences the present culture and political climate there. Among other things, we paid close attention to health care and nutritional trends along the way.
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Posted in Diet and Weight Loss, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 13 Comments & Updates

Urinary Incontinence Alternatives

April 3, 2011 Written by JP

Many of the decisions we make in life are based on estimates and statistical probability. In health care, this means factoring in hereditary influences and general population figures to “guesstimate” the odds of developing virtually any conceivable medical condition or disease. Age must also be introduced into the equation. As we grow older, the incidence of various conditions such as arthritis, prostatic enlargement and urinary incontinence increase substantially. In previous columns, I’ve addressed several natural strategies that may minimize the risk and reduce the symptoms of arthritis and an enlarged prostate. Today’s focus is on three little-known techniques that may discourage the likelihood of age-related incontinence and limit the symptomatic impact of incontinence if it’s already established.
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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Food and Drink, Women's Health | 7 Comments & Updates

Tai Chi News You Can Use

April 1, 2011 Written by JP

I bet we’ve all heard someone say: “My body is so out of shape” or “I really need to get my head in order”. Those words are spoken as if the body and brain live their very own, distinct and separate existence. The irony goes far beyond the fact that the brain perches directly on top of the rest of the body. Deep down we all understand that every function of the body, whether voluntary or involuntary, is dictated by the brain. And yet, many people still have a hard time accepting the concept that certain behaviors and practices that support the body also support the mind and vice-versa. But Tai Chi is an excellent example of a practice that does just that.
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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Heart Health, Mental Health | 12 Comments & Updates