Sunday, October 31, 2010

Myths and musts about drinking water

So who would want to argue with Chuck Norris?
Not I for sure.  He has started to write for World Net Daily and he is all about health.
His series is called C-Force and I thought that we would share it with you all.
Lou & Debbie

Myths and musts about drinking water

Julia Child summed it up well when she said, "Water is the most neglected nutrient in your diet but one of the most vital."

In a previous article, I suggested a couple of great nutritional books. One of them was Dr. Don Colbert's "The Seven Pillars of Health," in which he simplifies complex matters and boils down the web of healthy lifestyle tips into simple steps.

Colbert's seven pillars are a part of what I consider eight basics, or foundational principles, that you must focus on to create a better you. And some of them might surprise you. If you even relatively master these eight, you will greatly increase your odds of a long, energetic and productive life. Based upon questions from readers, I'll be elaborating on each of them in future articles.

And it all starts with the most overlooked element to nutrition – water.

Water is critical throughout the body:

It helps transport nutrients and waste products in and out of cells and the body;

It is necessary for all digestive, absorption, circulatory and excretory functions;

It is critical for the proper function of every organ in the body;

It is needed for the utilization of water-soluble vitamins;

It helps to maintain proper body temperature;
That is why proper hydration is the first item on Dr. Colbert's checklist in examining all ill patients. Roughly 70 percent of the body is made up of water, so drinking water makes sense. It is the most foundational aspect of life and the single most important nutrient. Again, it is used in every bodily function.

The fact is you can live five to seven weeks without food but only five days without water.

Colbert says, "Many Americans live in a mildly dehydrated state with various irritating symptoms and never realize it."

Signs or symptoms of a lack of hydration include headaches, skin problems, digestion problems, back pain, arthritis, dry skin, being overweight, high blood pressure, asthma, memory loss and other ailments. Colbert testifies that in his medical practice, many people have actually experienced relief and even been cured through proper hydration.

The doctor recommends you don't wait until you're thirsty to drink water. Because the average body loses about two quarts through organ functions, perspiration, filtration and secretion, it is important to hydrate yourself regularly.

Thirst is actually your body's way of saying, "I've needed water for a while." If you wait to drink water, you're likely dehydrated to some degree.

And here's another hydration myth. I used to think I could get my daily dose of water in coffee, juice, soft drinks and milk, but chemicals and sugars often associated with these beverages (and certain types of caffeine, even in teas) actually dehydrate the body more than they replenish it.

There is an equation to figure the recommended amount of water you should drink. Your weight divided by 2 equals the number of ounces of water you need to consume daily. And not all of that needs to be drunk, as much of your food intake provides the liquid. For example, bananas are 70 percent water. Apples (80 percent), tomatoes (90 percent), watermelons (90 percent) and lettuce (95 percent) are also good sources of water.

In order to ensure the intake of quality water, use a reputable filtration system or drink good bottled water, because contaminants are plenty in much of our tap water.

With the essential role that water plays in life, you will benefit physically, mentally and spiritually, so remember that the road to a better you definitely begins with H2O.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Taming America's tummy aches

This is a little long, but I know people who are living with this problem.  
Got a question for you? 
Do you think it's better to look for a natural solution first -  or should you always run to your doctor's office every time you don't feel well?
Look, we're not saying you should always avoid the traditional medical route, but it's not always best to only go that direction. 
A wise man I know once told me that you need to look at the underlining cause of the problem, not just mask the symptoms with drugs!
 Let us know what you think - or if this helped.


Lou & Debbie

Taming America's tummy aches
Dr. Julian Whitaker  © 2010
Abdominal pain, bloating, gas, cramping, diarrhea and constipation are a fact of life for the millions of Americans who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS. Also known as spastic colon and nervous indigestion, IBS is usually diagnosed only after a doctor has  ruled out more serious conditions such as ulcerative colitis or colon cancer.

Although IBS is not life-threatening, it is uncomfortable to say the least and downright inconvenient. For many people the symptoms are so severe that they have to plan their outings and day-to-day activities around trips to the bathroom.

What causes IBS?

Despite its prevalence, no one is certain what causes IBS. Emotional distress was once thought to be the culprit – patients were often told it was "all in their heads." While it's true that stress and anxiety worsen the condition, physicians now know the problem is in the gut, not the head.

Some research suggests that the muscles and nerves in the colons of IBS sufferers may be hypersensitive, and as a result, they respond strongly to stimuli that would not bother most people.

Common conventional treatments

Not surprisingly, conventional treatment for IBS consists primarily of prescription drugs. These include tranquilizers and antidepressants, which can improve IBS symptoms but have a host of other complications including addiction, anxiety, nausea and even violent behavior.

One IBS drug, Lotronex, was pulled from the market only months after it was approved by the FDA because it caused several deaths and numerous serious side effects requiring surgery or hospitalization.

Diet makes all the difference

Fortunately, there are ways to naturally manage IBS. Most digestive difficulties can be treated with dietary modifications.

The first step toward controlling IBS symptoms is to eat more fiber from vegetables, beans, peas and fruits. Fiber is important not only for stool formation, but also for the overall health of your gastrointestinal, or GI, tract. Aim for at least 30 grams daily.

Second, limit your intake of caffeine. Caffeine is a powerful GI tract irritant that can be especially problematic for IBS sufferers.

Also, cut back on excess sugars and starches. They're a favorite food of the bacteria that reside in the gut, which is why they cause gas and bloating. Beware also of artificial or low-cal sweeteners such as aspartame, sorbitol and mannitol, which can cause diarrhea.

Eliminate IBS triggers

If these simple changes don't dramatically improve your symptoms, your next line of defense is to identify which foods irritate your system and cut them out of your diet.

Among the most common IBS offenders are:

dairy products - wheat - eggs - citrus - corn - peanuts

The best way to identify triggers is to try an elimination diet. The idea of an elimination diet is to eat non-allergenic meals for at least one week to clear your system, then add in new foods every few days and observe your reaction to them.

A standard elimination diet may consist of:

chicken - rice - potatoes - bananas - apples - a variety of vegetables (except corn)

Only these foods – fresh, not processed – should be eaten for seven days. As you slowly reintroduce other foods, keep a detailed diary to help you pinpoint which ones produce symptoms.

The mind-body connection

The colon is controlled partly by the nervous system, which explains why bowel evacuation is a normal part of the body's response in a high-stress, fight-or-flight situation. So it makes sense that chronic stress and anxiety can dramatically affect everyday bowel health.

Learning to relax can make a huge difference in alleviating IBS symptoms. In one study, adults with IBS were split into two groups, and one group practiced a relaxation technique twice a day for 15 minutes. After six weeks, researchers found that participants in the relaxation group reported significantly reduced symptoms, with particular improvement in diarrhea and bloating.

Amino acids to the rescue

If anxiety is contributing to your IBS symptoms, give gamma-aminobutyric acid, or GABA, a try. This amino acid binds to receptor sites in the brain, blocking "excitatory" neurotransmitters and keeping you on an even keel. GABA, which is available in health food stores, is safe, nontoxic and non-habit forming.

For quick relief during an acute episode, open a capsule and stir it into water. For chronic anxiety, take 750 mg 1-3 times per day as needed. Because amino acids are best absorbed on an empty stomach, you should take them 30 minutes before or two hours after meals.

You should also consider glutamine. The most prevalent amino acid in the body, glutamine is renowned for its healing properties in the  gut. It aids in the production of enterocytes – cells that line the intestinal tract and play a key role in controlling the absorption of nutrients and prohibiting improperly digested proteins from entering the bloodstream. The recommended dose is 2-3 g daily.

Other ways to restore digestive health

Several other supplements have proven effective when it comes to treating IBS. They can be found in most health food stores.

Probiotics: Stress, medications, and poor diet can reduce "friendly" bacteria in your intestines, worsening symptoms of IBS. Clinical studies show that probiotic supplements help normalize the bacterial makeup of the intestinal tract, alleviating bloating, constipation, diarrhea and other GI disturbances that often accompany IBS. Use as directed.

Artichoke leaf extract:
A growing body of evidence suggests that artichoke leaf extract is a valuable therapy in the treatment of IBS. After a six-week study, researchers in the United Kingdom reported that IBS patients taking artichoke leaf extract had significant reductions in the severity of their symptoms. Furthermore, 96 percent of the patients rated artichoke leaf extract as "better than or equal to" previous therapies they had tried. The suggested dose is 600-1,800 mg daily, in divided doses with meals.

Peppermint: (Mentha piperita) is particularly beneficial for gas and bloating because it helps relax muscles in the intestines. The preferred form of peppermint is enteric-coated capsules. They break down in the intestines, not in the stomach, where they could cause heartburn. Take 1-2 capsules (each containing 0.2 mL of peppermint oil), two or three times a day, preferably between meals.
As most physicians are quick to point out, there is no sure cure for IBS. However, I am confident that through diet modification, stress control and the use of targeted supplements, you can achieve dramatic, long-term relief.

Julian Whitaker, M.D., known as America's Wellness Doctor, is founder of the Whitaker Wellness Institute, which has treated more than 45,000 patients as the largest alternative medicine clinic in the country. Author of the monthly newsletter "Health & Healing" and 13 books, including "Reversing Diabetes" and "Reversing Heart Disease," Dr. Whitaker is a proponent of freedom of choice in medicine and founder of the nonprofit Freedom of Health Foundation.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Glaxo Settles Defective-Drugs Claims for $750 Million - are you taking any of these drugs?


Many of you know that Debbie & I used to own a health club.  While there, we saw so many women come in who were, to say the least, over medicated!  It is up to us as individuals to take charge of our health!  If we will watch what we are eating and start exercising, we can eliminate the need and the amount of drugs in our system.

I am all for capitalism, but this is not the first time that a company made a decision that hurt the end user's, i.e. YOU!   When you read articles like this one it should give you a reason to want to get off drugs anyway.

All the best

Lou & Debbie


Glaxo Settles Defective-Drugs Claims for $750 Million

GlaxoSmithKline PLC settled a U.S. government false claims suit over the sale of defective drugs for $750 million.

The lawsuit was initially filed in 2004 by Cheryl D. Eckard, a former global quality assurance manager for the U.K.’s biggest drugmaker. The London-based company said in July it agreed in principle with the U.S. to pay 500 million pounds ($791 million) to settle the investigation. The government confirmed the settlement today in a statement.

The pharmaceutical manufacturer was accused in court papers of selling tainted drugs under false pretenses. The medicines, which were manufactured at defendants’ plant in Cidra, Puerto Rico, were misidentified as a result of product mix-ups, according to court papers filed in Boston federal court under the U.S. False Claims Act.

“The false claims arose out of chronic, serious deficiencies in the quality assurance function at the Cidra plant and the defendants’ ongoing serious violations of the laws and regulations designed to ensure the fitness of drug products for use,” the government said in court papers.

The drugs affected by the defendants’ conduct include Paxil, Paxil CR, Avandia, Avandamet, Coreg, Bactroban, Abreva, Cimetidine, Compazine, Denavir, Dyazide, Thorazine, Stelazine, Ecotrin, Tagamet, Relafen, Kytril, Factive, Dyrenium and Albenza, according to court records.

“We regret that we operated the Cidra facility in a manner that was inconsistent with current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) requirements and with GSK’s commitment to manufacturing quality,” said PD Villarreal, a Glaxo senior vice president, in an e-mailed statement.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2005 seized some Paxil CR lots after it was discovered that the pills sometimes split inappropriately, according to court papers. Some of the pills lacked an active ingredient.

© Copyright 2010 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

How to save a life - maybe even your own!

I just got this and thought this is something that everyone really needs to know.
How many of us would know what to do if this happened to us?

Lou & Debbie

This is the first time I heard of this simple fire prevention  idea... It's so simple and effective, that I'm forwarding it to all  my family and friends.  Kitchen Fire - Read first then watch


Dear Friends,

I was Executive Director of the Institute for Burn Medicine for  San Diego  and Imperial Counties when we lived in California . Besides  raising the  money to establish a Burn Treatment Center at the University  Hospital  there, I conducted extensive public education campaigns in Burn  Prevention..

A friend recently sent me the attached short video - and like an old  fire-horse, I heard the bell ring and am rushing to send this  excellent  prevention piece to each of you. It is well worth watching! And it  could  save your life.

This is very stunning - please read first and then watch the very  short clip.

I never realized that a wet dishcloth can be a one size fits all  lid to  cover a fire in a pan!

This is a dramatic video (30-seconds) about how to deal  with a  common kitchen fire ....oil in a frying pan.

Read the  following  Introduction, then watch the show ...It's a real eye-opener!!

At the Fire Fighting Training school they would demonstrate this  with a  deep fat fryer set on the fire field. An instructor would don a  fire suit  and using an 8 oz cup at the end of a 10-foot pole to toss water  onto the  grease fire.

The results got the attention of the students. The water, being  heavier  than oil, sinks to the bottom where it instantly becomes  superheated.

The explosive force of the steam blows the burning oil up and out.  On the  open field, it became a thirty foot high fireball that  resembled a nuclear  blast.

Inside the confines of a kitchen, the fire ball hits the ceiling  and fills  the entire room. Also, do not throw sugar or flour on a grease  fire. One  cup of either creates the explosive force of two sticks of dynamite.

This is a powerful message----watch the video and don't forget  what you see.

Tell your whole family about this video. Or better yet, send them this link!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Bisphosphonates tied to stroke in cancer patients

Bisphosphonates tied to stroke in cancer patients

By Anne Harding

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Cancer patients treated with osteoporosis-fighting drugs are at increased risk of abnormal heart rhythms and stroke, new research shows.

The benefits of these drugs for preventing and treating cancer after it has spread to the bone-especially in breast cancer patients-still outweigh their risks, said the study's lead author, as long as patients are monitored closely.

"These drugs are still very, very, very valuable drugs," said Dr. James S. Goodwin of the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. "The risk of stroke from atrial fibrillation can be entirely prevented if we're on top of it."

Atrial fibrillation, an irregular beating rhythm in the heart's upper "atrial" chambers, increases stroke risk because blood pools in the poorly functioning chambers, leading to clotting; clots can then break off and travel to the brain, causing a stroke.

Intravenous bisphosphonates, which include Aredia and Zometa, are used in healthy people to treat osteoporosis. Studies had already linked these drugs to atrial fibrillation and stroke, but in 2008 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration concluded after a review of safety data that "healthcare professionals should not alter their prescribing patterns for bisphosphonates and patients should not stop taking their bisphosphonate medication."

Doses of bisphosphonates given to treat cancer patients with bone metastasis are typically 10 times higher than doses used in patients with osteoporosis.

Because these patients may also be on other potentially heart-damaging chemotherapy medications, Goodwin and his colleagues investigated heart risks by reviewing data on nearly 7,000 Medicare patients with cancer who took bisphosphonates and nearly 14,000 cancer patients on Medicare who had not been prescribed the drugs. They report their findings in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

The cancer patients taking bisphosphonates were at a 30 percent increased risk of atrial fibrillation compared to those who were not given the drugs, the researchers found. While people not on the medications had a 25 percent risk of having atrial fibrillation during the six-year follow up period, the risk for people on bisphosphonates was 33 percent; for stroke, the risks were 15 percent and 19 percent, respectively.

If doctors find that a patient has atrial fibrillation-which they can do by simply listening to the heart-they can immediately prescribe blood-thinning drugs to prevent a stroke, the researcher said.

In an editorial accompanying the study, Dr. Julie R. Gralow of the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle concludes that "the jury is still out" on whether bisphosphonates increase the risk of abnormal heart rhythms and stroke. Nevertheless, she adds, "Before prescribing any bisphosphonates, risks and benefits must be carefully weighed by physicians and well-informed patients."

SOURCE: Journal of Clinical Oncology, published online October 12, 2010.

Drug companies pay 17,000 U.S. doctors, report finds

Drug companies pay 17,000 U.S. doctors, report finds

WASHINGTON | Tue Oct 19, 2010 2:09pm EDT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - More than 17,000 doctors and other healthcare providers have taken money from seven major drug companies to talk to other doctors about their products, a joint investigation by news organizations and non-profit groups found.
More than 380 of the doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other professionals took in more than $100,000 in 2009 and 2010, according to the investigation released on Tuesday. The report said far more doctors are likely to have taken such payments, but it documented these based on information from seven drugmakers.
The payments are not illegal and usually not even considered improper. But the investigation by journalism group ProPublica, Consumer Reports magazine, NPR radio and several publications showed doctors were sometimes urged to recommend "off-label" prescriptions of drugs, meaning using them for conditions they are not approved for.
And the report points to several studies showing that even small gifts and payments to doctors can affect their attitudes, and many companies have stopped giving out once-common gifts such as pens, cups and other objects carrying drug brand names.
"Tens of thousands of U.S. physicians are paid to spread the word about pharma's favored pills and to advise the companies about research and marketing," the group says in its report, available here
The groups used information from seven drugmakers -- AstraZeneca, Cephalon, GlaxoSmithKline, Johnson & Johnson, Eli Lilly, Merck and Pfizer.
"Some of the companies were forced to disclose this information as a result of legal settlements; others released it voluntarily," Consumer Reports said.
It said more than 70 other pharmaceutical companies have not disclosed payments made to doctors, although the healthcare reform law passed in March will require them to do so by 2013.
"This investigation begins to pull back the shroud on these activities," Dr. John Santa, director of the Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center, said in a statement.
"The amount of money involved is astounding, and the ProPublica report's account of the background of some of the physicians is disturbing."
Drug companies often say they pay expert physicians to educate their peers about drugs and conditions. These sessions are often seminars held alongside major medical meetings but sometimes they involve briefings at vacation resorts.
ProPublica said a review of state medical board disciplinary records found more than 250 of the doctors paid to speak had been sanctioned for activities such as inappropriately prescribing drugs or having sex with patients.
It said 40 others had been warned by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for research misconduct, had lost hospital privileges or were convicted of crimes.
(Reporting by Maggie Fox; Editing by Julie Steenhuysen and Eric Beech)