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Rooster's Crowing Is Determined Responsible For Sunrise - Learn More!

09/20/07

This Week In HealthBeat News:

  • Something Wonderful Is Getting Ready To Happen At The Wellness Club!
  • The Problem With Research Article Abstracts - Or, How The Rooster Crows To Make The Sun Rise...

  • CT Scans And Radiation Risks In Children - Is It Really Worth It?
  • Phlebitis / Thrombophlebitis - A Dangerous Condition Much In The News Of Late
  • Some Fun With Politics
  • Laughter is Good Medicine: Some Truly Useful Information This Week - Conversion Units

Something Wonderful Is Getting Ready To Happen At The Wellness Club!

The Wellness Club has been around for a long time now - we've had a website since 1994, in the very early days of the internet! We also have customers and patients who have been with us that long and even longer, and have seen the Wellness Club undergo several on-line changes and improvements.

Well, get ready, for we have been burning the ol' midnight oil for the last several months here and we are almost ready to unveil a new and much improved Wellness Club website - with all of the scientifically sound, deeply researched, and fully referenced information that you have come to expect from Dr. Myatt and her research team, plenty of new information, and a new, easier-to-use and far more convenient shopping cart for those of you who place orders on-line.

Finding the new website will be easy - just go to www.DrMyattsWellnessClub.com as you always have. Soon, very soon, you will see a bright, cheery new look with some great new features.

Using the new shopping cart will also be easy - those of you who have ordered from us before will most likely already have an "account" set up that you can "login" to. We have been working hard to get as much of our customers information as we can moved over to the new shopping cart - you may login using your email address, and your password should be your membership number. If your membership number doesn't work as a password, you can always click on the "I Forgot My Password" link, and your password will be e-mailed to you. If the cart does not recognize you by your e-mail address, you may have begun using a new address but not told us, so we may have your old address in the system - try the old address.

If you are having problems, please call me, Nurse Mark, at 1-800-376-9288 and we'll get things worked out for you.

If you are or have been a Wellness Club Member and cannot get logged-in PLEASE call Nurse Mark for help before creating a whole new account! We want you to keep your familiar membership number and your discounts!

Once you are logged in, please make sure that all the information is correct: Name, billing address, shipping address, phone number, e-mail address. This is also a good time to change your password if you wish. (Please remember though, if you like to call in your orders sometimes, that Nurse Mark will need to know what your password is so that we can use the shopping cart system to place the order on your behalf - in this case, your membership number may be the best password!)

The new cart will do some cool things too: it will calculate your member discount, figure in your free shipping, and remember your credit card number for subsequent orders - all with complete security.

We've worked hard on this new website and cart, and we think you'll like it - so, watch for it; it's coming very soon!

The Problem With Research Article Abstracts - Or, How The Rooster Crows To Make The Sun Rise...

Our patients tend to be a well-informed and intelligent group - naturally, they chose Dr. Myatt for their physician! This is a good thing most of the time - but sometimes our patients cause themselves needless worry and alarm when they get out into the great, big, wild, wooly, and unchecked World Wide Web. Newsgroups, support groups, "infomercial" websites, self-appointed "experts" - all clamoring for attention. It can be a confusing, even misleading place out there, much like a carnival midway sometimes.

The note below was sent to us by one of our patients, a noted Scientist and a quite brilliant fellow who a little over a year ago was told by his conventional doctor to tidy up his affairs as he had weeks, perhaps months at best to live. We are thrilled that he is not only still "with us" but that he is fit and healthy and confounding his conventional doctor. He is also, like many prostate cancer patients, keenly interested in his condition and deeply determined to learn as much as possible about it. And therein lies the problem.

Read on...

Dear Dr Myatt,

I hope you have had a very pleasant weekend.

As you know, I have been making a Supershake every morning for breakfast and one of its main ingredients is Flaxseed Oil.

I also receive many emails from well informed sources, who are members of a special interest group focused on PCa. (Prostate Cancer) This surfaced the paper below and the associated comment.

You will appreciate that this gives me some concern about the flaxseed oil, which is stated to comprise mainly the alpha-linolenic acid.

Can you provide some published material to rebutt the proposition that this is "bad for PCa"?

Many thanks

This patient goes on to provide us with this link to a Journal article:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/utils/fref.fcgi?PrId=3058&itool=AbstractPlus-def&uid=17450530&db=pubmed&url=http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijc.22788

from the International Journal of Cancer and quotes the information that was sent to him, highlighting in red selected portions of the text: (edited for brevity - see full abstract at URL above)

Risk factors for prostate cancer incidence and progression in the health professionals follow-up study.
[...] for fatal prostate cancer, recent smoking history, taller height, higher BMI, family history, and
high intakes of total energy, calcium and alpha-linolenic acid were associated with a statistically significant increased risk. [...] Tomato sauce (inversely) and alpha-linolenic acid (positively) intakes were strong predictors of advanced cancer among those with low-grade cancers at diagnosis[...]

Associated comment (presumably of the person from the support group who found and forwarded this information) " It's the alpha linolenic acid that is the ALA that is not good for prostate cancer. Alpha lipoic is OK."

Interestingly, this abstract does contain a gem of information that appears to have been underappreciated:

[...] The complexity of the clinical and pathologic manifestations of prostate cancer must be considered in the design and interpretation of studies. How Very True!

Dr. Myatt responded to this fellow with the article below:

Once upon a time, a man decided to do research and find out what makes the sun rise in the morning.

Every day, a half hour before sunrise, he dutifully awakened and sat outside in a lawn chair, recording his observations.

Every day for that entire year, whether it was cloudy or clear, he heard a rooster crow in the distance. Sometimes ten minutes before the sun came up, and other times five minutes before the sun came up, but the rooster always crowed.

After a year of observation, the man was confident that he had solved the mystery of sunrise. He published a scientific paper titled "Sound Correlates and Sunrise: What Makes the Sun Come Up?" The abstract (a pseudo-scientific term for "article summary") said something about "cock's crow unequivocally associated with first light of dawn."

The article title and abstract were published in numerous internet forums. The media picked up on the article, and headlines read "Rooster's Crow Responsible for Sunrise." Because the article had been published in a scientific journal --- The Journal of Improbable Results ---- everyone knew that the information must be trustworthy.

People started to panic. What if something happened to the Rooster? Would the sun stop rising every morning? Was it a special rooster, or perhaps a particular breed of rooster, that caused sunrise? Should the rooster be a protected species? Would we experience another ice age if anything happened to the rooster? Or worse, would life as we know it cease to exist without the rooster bringing the sun up each day?

The stock market fluctuated drastically as a result of this report. New companies were formed to develop alternate technologies in case the sun failed to rise. Cryonic research was started to preserve the rooster should anything happen to him. And many people lived in fear of the worst, which seemed reasonable in view of the new findings.

Of course, very few people actually bothered to read the research paper itself. Why bother when the abstract clearly stated that "cock's crow unequivocally associated with first light of dawn"?  Besides, scientific journal articles are usually not accessible except through a paid subscription to the journal, or at least a pay-per-view of the article.

Several people actually bothered to read the article, but they had no background in improbable results research and so didn't understand what they were reading.

One specialist read the article and began to laugh uncontrollably, for it was clear to her that the entire panic was unwarranted. First, the study was "observational," not interventional. Just because the rooster crows before sunup doesn't "prove" that the crowing causes sunup. And she found that no studies had been done (or even planned), to silence the rooster and see if the sun came up without his help.

Although she tried to explain to her worried constituents that the reports of the study were far over-blown and not necessarily accurate, the mass hysteria created by headlines and "abstracts" was too great, and most people chose to remain in a state of panic and confusion rather than systematically evaluate the evidence.

And so it is with the headline and abstract you forwarded to me.....

First, do you suppose that the person who posted this abstract read the article? Seeing as how the abstract is "ahead of print" and the article is a "pay-per-view," I'm betting NOT. Further, unless one knows how to read and interpret medical science (not just any science), they still might not know what they were looking at.

Do you suppose the person posting this article even knows what study the "conclusion" is drawn from, or if it is a viable conclusion? Again, I'd bet money that this is not the case.

The study from which this sweeping statement is drawn is called the "Health Professionals Follow-Up Study," a project that has been going on since 1986. Over 50,000 male medical professionals (doctors, dentists, veterinarians) have been receiving surveys for the past 20+ years, and that's the study. Like the "rooster and sunrise study," it is an observational study only. Individuals and groups seeking grants related to this study must continue to "make something" of the results in order to continue receiving funding. There's always a "rooster article" to be found in any set of data!

Now, here's the "inside scoop" (the one few bother to look into before they post an abstract on a forum, or read said abstract and get their knickers in a knot about a single sentence of illogically-drawn "conclusion" .....)

So what is the True story about ALA's and Prostate Cancer?

ALA's and flax seed oil are being declared guilty by being at the crime scene, rather than actually being the criminal. (Sort of like saying that white blood cells cause infection because you almost always find them at sites of infection; or saying that flies cause garbage because....).

To fully understand this, let's use both common sense AND biochemistry (both of which I find often lacking when someone posts an "abstract" with one sentence highlighted on a forum....)

First, the Common Sense (Oh, NO! NOT common sense! Don't make me go there!.....)

For all but the most recent of human existence, we have eaten foods with an omega-6 fatty acid (linoleic acid and arachidonic acid) to omega-3 fatty acid (DHA, EPA, and alpha-linolenic acid) of about 1:1 to 2:1. Over the last 50 years, however, that ratio has changed to 20:1 or even 30:1 and in some cases as high as 50:1.

Modern diets now include HUGE amounts of highly refined Omega-6 oils extracted from plants (corn oil, safflower oil, cottonseed oil, peanut oil, and soybean oil) and used for cooking. These oils are all high in the omega-6s fatty acids but also contain some amount of O-3 fatty acids. At the same time, we have dramatically decreased our intake of omega-3 fatty acids (found primarily in whole grains, beans, seeds, and seafood). The Omega-3's we DO eat are typically "secondary" to the omega-6's in food, and are cooked or highly refined.

Biochemical side-note: Omega 3's and Omega 6's (polyunsaturated oils) are dramatically altered when heated. THEY ARE NOT THE SAME SPECIES of oil once they are heated, and their health benefits literally evaporate with cooking. SO... talking about Essential Fatty Acids is really an incomplete discussion without addressing whether or not the oils are the "parent oils" (unheated) or whether they are damaged EFA's. But I digress with science....back to common sense....

In this same 50-year period that our intake of parent EFA's (both O-6 and O-3, but especially O-3) has dramatically decreased, the rates of prostate cancer have soared. (The incidence of prostate cancer in Uruguay, one of the more frequently-referenced "ALA's are associated with prostate cancer" studies, has increased nearly 80% in the past 50 years. It should be noted that the diet in Uraguay is largely comprised of meat (a major dietary source of ALA), dairy,  a lot of food fried in refined cooking oils such as canola (a major dietary source of ALA, and remember that heating ALA makes it an entirely different "beast")  and virtually no flaxseed or unheated cold-processed flax oil.

Common sense would tell us that we've been doing something wrong over the last 50, especially in regard to prostate cancer. Here are some things that have changed in our oil consumption:

1.) We get most of our Omega-3 fatty acids from foods that are quite high in Omega-6 fatty acids, thereby altering the 1:1 or at most 2:1 ration of O-6 to O-3 that used to comprise a "natural diet. As a result, yes, we're getting more O-3 (especially ALA) but a LOT MORE O-6. It is important to understand that all fat-containing foods have a variety of different types of fats, not just one type. For example, Canola oil is considered a high Omega-3 fat, but it actually contains omega 3s, 6s, and 9s. Meat contains both saturated fats and also unsaturated omega-6s and 3s.

2.) Most of the Essential Fatty Acids (both O-6 and O-3) that are consumed today have been heated or chemically extracted. These polyunsaturated oils are quite fragile, and heating and refining them makes them a completely different "species" of oil. If we are not consuming "parent" (undamaged) EFA's, then we are comparing apples to oranges.

3.) Refining oils removes many of the associated nutrients (phytochemicals) and fiber. Remember that I originally advised you to use ground flax seed meal instead of flax oil, or second best, high lignand flax oil. Lignands are a special class of fiber with potent anti-cancer properties.

4.) Vegetable oils (even ones that are uncooked) go rancid quickly. Again, a rancid EFA is an entirely different "species" than an undamaged "parent" EFA.

Ah, but listen to the untutored who take every sentence from a "scientific study" (to use the term loosely) and you'd think that eating raw, natural O-3 ALA's in the form of flaxseed was single-handedly responsible for the rise in prostate cancer. What a serious perversion of the truth!

Next, Let's Look at the Medical Science

In spite of a few spurious "rooster and sunrise" studies to the contrary, the vast majority of scientific studies show a positive outcome using flaxseed and Omega-3 parent oils in cancer patients.

A Duke University Medical Center study found that flaxseed and a low-fat diet helped men reduce the risk of prostate cancer (1, 2). The conclusions of the study were that even short-term changes to a high-fiber/flax supplemented diet resulted in prostate cancer cells that didn't divide as quickly as those in people not on the diet. I really didn't think we'd have results like we did, because this was a diet and not drug intervention," said Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, associate research professor in the department of surgery at Duke.

A Kaiser Permanente study concluded that it was not total fat intake per se which relates to prostate and colon cancer but instead the type of fat, plus increasing exercise, that was associated with lower cancer risk. The "type of fats" recommended are from uncooked plant sources (which would be "parent" O-6's and O-3's). The American Cancer Society guidelines concur with these recommendations (3).

A Korean study found that the ratios of serum O-3 to O-6 were highly correlated with prostate cancer. Men with prostate cancer also had significantly higher levels of O-6 acids than did men with BPH and those with normal prostates. The researchers concluded that omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids have a tumor-promoting effect while omega-3 acids have a protective effect. (4).

And While We're On The Subject of Biochemistry....

The Fate of ALA in the body is that it is converted to DHA and EPA, two forms of fat which have a HIGH correlation with protection from cancer. Aye, but here's the rub.

O-6 and O-3 (and O-9, for that matter) all use the same delta-6-desaturase enzyme for their conversion. When O-6 levels are high, O-3 is not so readily converted to DHA and EPA. Since DHA and EPA are protective substances, high O-6 can interfere with conversion. (A probable mechanism whereby high O-6 levels increase cancer proliferation, by interfering with the body's use of protective O-3).

Trans fats, high insulin levels and damaged polyunsaturated oils all interfere with the desaturase enzyme.

And Now the Particular Study That This "Rooster Crowing Causes Sunrise" Abstract Was Taken From....

The "Health Professionals Follow-Up Study" has been ongoing since 1986. A group of 50,000+ male health professionals (doctors, dentists, veterinarians, etc.) have been sent questionnaires every two years since 1986. That makes this "study" an observational one (like getting up to watch the sun rise), not an intervention study. As we discussed, finding white blood cells at the site of an infection is not proof that WBC's cause infection (we know they don't, but instead are attempting to "clean up" infection). The rooster crowing before sunrise does not prove that His Nibs' noise brings the sun up, either.

There is NO PLACE in the Men's Healthy Study questionnaire that asks about specific foods that contain largely ALA, or ALA supplements or flaxseed. You can view the actual questionnaire here: http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/hpfs/pdfs/04L.pdf

If you want to see the food and supplement questions they have asked about over the years (the form is sent every two years), access it here:  http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/hpfs/hpfs_qx_diet.html

Higher levels of ALA as ascertained in this study are from meats (a specific question on the form), especially fried meats. This, of course, also increases intake of O-6. And remember, a cooked polyunsaturate bears no resemblance to a "parent" EFA, questions which aren't touched on in this study.

The Bottom Line (and Many Medical Scientists Concur)

If you look at all of the evidence, both historical and scientific, (plus use some common sense) there is not one shred of "proof" that "parent" Omega-3 fatty acids as derived from flax seed and flax oil contribute to increased prostate cancer risk. In fact, just the opposite is true. The real risk is from highly processed vegetable oils (yes, containing ALA), that bear little resemblance to parent Omega-3 oils (native ALA's).

Not only do these heat and chemically-processed ALA's bear no resemblance to parent ALA's, they do not help to improve the highly imbalanced O-6:O-3 ratios characteristic of our "evolved" diets.

But isn't it better to be safe than sorry and avoid ALA's? I don't believe so. As I mentioned earlier, that would be like blaming white blood cells (WBC's) for infections, and seeking to eliminate them instead of (or in addition to) the offending bacterium. Blaming the white blood cells and then trying to get rid of them --- "Maybe it's true and maybe it's not, but just to be on the "safe side" we should get rid of the WBC's at the site of an infection," is NOT a benign mistake.

The big problem with "warnings" about flax and flax oil is that they condemn a valuable component of cancer prevention and treatment based on faulty information and also let the real killers (highly refined O-3's and O-6's plus an imbalanced O-3:O-6 ratio) go Scott-free.  (Or "O.J.-free," as the case may be).

If you're concerned about flax oil, you can always rely solely on fish oil for your DHA and EPA's. However, you'll be missing out on the cancer-protective lignands (a type of fiber that is difficult to obtain in sufficient quantities outside of flax seed).

In Health,
Dr. Myatt

References
1.) Pilot study of dietary fat restriction and flaxseed supplementation in men with prostate cancer before surgery: exploring the effects on hormonal levels, prostate-specific antigen, and histopathologic features. Urology. 2001 Jul;58(1):47-52.
2.) Pilot study to explore effects of low-fat, flaxseed-supplemented diet on proliferation of benign prostatic epithelium and prostate-specific antigen. Urology. 2004 May;63(5):900-4.
3.) Dietary fat and cancer.Am J Med. 2002 Dec 30;113 Suppl 9B:63S-70S
4.) Comparison of fatty acid profiles in the serum of patients with prostate cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia. Clinical Biochemistry, Vol. 32, August 1999, pp. 405-09.

CT Scans And Radiation Risks In Children - Is It Really Worth It?

Opinion By Nurse Mark

We have become very quick to request CT scans for just about every complaint these days - for ourselves, and especially for our children.

And who can blame a worried parent: little Suzy has a tummyache, or little Johnny fell and thumped his head, or there is that nagging cough that hasn't gone away and it's been almost two weeks now... so it's off to the doctor to demand some answers.

The poor doctor though is swamped with all the other worried parents of all the other Suzies and Johnnies, so he listens quickly to the story, makes a perfunctory check to make sure that no disaster will befall the child before it gets to someone else's care, and sends 'em packing with an order for a CT of whatever.

Whew - done! Let the radiologist make a diagnosis! (Or face the wrath of a parent who must be told that there is nothing to be seen, and that coughs and colds and tummyaches and thumped noggins have been survived by kids for millions of years before the advent of CT scans and lawsuits.)

Let's look at what this is doing to our kids: In terms of radiation dose, a head CT is equivalent to 200 chest x-rays, a chest CT to 150 chest x-rays, and an abdominal CT to 250 chest x-rays.

In this report, just issued to doctors, nurses, and radiologists on the Medscape website (they felt this was important enough that they provided "continuing education credits" or CE's for reading the article and passing the test!)  are told "Computed tomography is of particular interest because of its relatively high radiation dose and wide use. Consensus statements on radiation risk suggest that it is reasonable to act on the assumption that low-level radiation may have a small risk of causing cancer."

Throughout this article the weasel-words "may have" and "small risk" are used repeatedly, and several times the article assures doctors that they should continue to support the CT imaging industry by ordering scans because "Low-level radiation from CT studies might carry a small risk for cancer, but the risk is outweighed by the benefits of indicated CT studies in children."

In this last statement note the use of the medical weasel-word "indicated." In normal layperson language "indicated" means "really needed because there is no other way to get the same results." For example, in a septic bacterial infection, an antibiotic would be indicated - for an influenza, not. In terms of CT scanning and other radiological examinations, "indicated" means that the doctor has exhausted all other means of making a diagnosis - including a careful and detailed hands-on physical examination!

Unfortunately, few conventional (or allopathic) doctors have the time, inclination or, in some cases the skills to do such a detailed examination and work-up - much of today's "art of medicine" involves remembering what drug or test the Merck Manual dictates as being the "Standard of Care" for any given complaint and writing the appropriate order or prescription. Better to pass the risk of misdiagnosis on to a "specialist" than to try to "make the call" by ones-self... - this is known in clinical practice as "Risk Management."

There is no question that as exposure to radiation increases, so does the risk of stimulating cancer. It is for this reason that those old fluoroscopes were banned from shoe stores and radium is no longer used on watch dials! Why the Big Medical Establishment continues to try to delude use into believing that these high-radiation-dose CT scans are acceptable for our children who are actively growing and thus at even higher risk is beyond comprehension. Is it ignorance, laziness, or the need to protect the multi billions of dollars per year industry that CT scanning has become?

Fortunately, parents do have a choice - they can insist that all non-radiological avenues of examination and diagnosis are followed, explored, and exhausted by skilled practitioners before consenting to CT scans for their children!

The Medscape article can be found here:

Report Issued on the Risks of Using CT Scans in Children  http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/562630?src=mpnews

Phlebitis / Thrombophlebitis - A Dangerous Condition Much In The News Of Late

"Thrombophlebitis," or deep venous thrombosis (DVT) is the most common presenting vein disorder. Most vein clots begin in the valves of deep calf veins. Tissue substances are released that in turn form clumps of red blood cells (RBCs). If these clumped blood cells remain in the leg or elsewhere, they cause redness, swelling, and pain. If they dislodge and travel to the brain, they can cause a stroke.

("Thrombus" is the medical term for a "clot")

Causes of venous thrombosis include:
1) Blood vessel lining injury (caused by catheters, septic phlebitis, injection of irritating substances, trauma).
2) Excess blood clotting (due to malignant tumors, blood cell abnormalities, oral contraceptives and inflammation).
3) Slowed blood flow (varicose veins, prolonged bed rest, heart failure, dependent immobilization of the legs such as occurs during car or air travel).

Factors which can cause blood clots
Specifically, any one of the following conditions may predispose to blood clot formation:

  • elevated homocysteine levels
  • oxidized LDL cholesterol levels
  • platelet activating factor (PAF)
  • elevated fibrinogen
  • elevated thromboxane A2, prostaglandin E2, lipooxygenase, cyclooxygenase
  • free-radical induced platelet aggregation
  • thrombin activating factor
  • deficiency of tissue-plasminogen activator (tPA)
  • increased blood viscosity
  • increased platelet count
  • increased red blood cell kinase activity
  • inflammation of the arterial wall
  • atherosclerotic plaque
  • elevated triglycerides
  • increased platelet adhesion
  • collagen-induced platelet adhesion
  • arachidonic acid-induced platelet aggregation
  • adenosine-induced platelet aggregation
  • epinephrine-induced platelet aggregation
  • serotonin-induced platelet aggregation
  • antigen-antibody reactions
  • elevated thromboxane A2, prostaglandin E2, lipooxygenase, cyclooxygenase
  • free-radical induced platelet aggregation
  • thrombin activating factor
  • deficiency of tissue-plasminogen activator (tPA)
  • increased blood viscosity
  • increased platelet count
  • increased red blood cell kinase activity
  • inflammation of the arterial wall
  • atherosclerotic plaque
  • elevated triglycerides
  • increased platelet adhesion
  • collagen-induced platelet adhesion

("Aggregation" refers to the accumulation of platelets to form a platelet plug or a thrombus)

Fibrin thrombi can be prevented by conventional anticoagulant therapy (heparin or coumarin / coumadin / warfarin compounds), but platelet aggregation is not inhibited by these agents. (Merck Manual p. 586). It is estimated that only 1/3 of all causative agents of thrombosis are blocked by the administration of conventional blood thinning drugs.

Treatment Considerations
Treatment of the underlying cause of thrombosis, and phlebitis which results in thrombosis, are the mainstays of prevention of stroke occurrence and reoccurrence. High blood pressure, high cholesterol (especially with low HDL- the "good" cholesterol), excessive blood clotting ("blood sludge"), and atherosclerosis should be addressed as indicated.  Because of the many and varied causes of thrombosis, a multi-faceted approach to anticoagulation and blood viscosity normalization is surer than conventional anticoagulant (coumadin) therapy alone.

DIET AND LIFESTYLE RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Diet: eat a nutritious diet high in nutrient-rich foods. Plant foods contain phytonutrients which help prevent blood from clotting abnormally.
  • Achieve and maintain a normal weight.
  • Exercise regularly. 30 minutes, 3 times per week minimum. Regular exercise helps to keep blood from pooling and becoming "stagnant", especially in the lower legs.
  • Dont smoke! Smoking irritates the blood vessel lining and such irritation initiates a chain of events that cause blood to clump.
  • Drink 64 ounces of pure water daily. Dehydration causes blood vessel irritation and can predispose to abnormal blood clotting.

PRIMARY SUPPORT

  • Maxi Multi: 3 caps, 3 times per day with meals. Optimal (not minimal) doses of antioxidant nutrients (vitamin A, beta carotene, C, E, zinc, selenium), B6, B12, folic acid, bioflavonoids and magnesium are especially important. Magnesium helps prevent high blood pressure, a cause of stroke.    
  • Omega 3 fatty acids: the anti-inflammatory action of Omega-3s helps prevent blood vessel irritation.
    Flax seed meal, 2 teaspoons per day with food
    OR
    Flax seed capsules
    : 2-4 caps, 3 times per day (target dose range: 6-12 caps per day)
    OR
    Flax seed oil
    : 1 tablespoon per day
    OR
    Max EPA
    (Omega-3 rich fish oil): 1-2 caps, 3 times per day with meals (target dose: 3-6 caps per day).
  • MAXI-GREENS: 3 caps, 3 times per day. Maxi greens contains a spectrum of the herbs known to maintain  normal blood viscosity. (grape seed, ginkgo, bilberry, green tea).

ADDITIONAL SUPPORT
(Treat known risk factors. Consult an alternative medicine physician for further assistance):

High Cholesterol or Triglyceride levels:
Follow additional recommendations for High Cholesterol

Diabetes (which predisposes to atherosclerosis):
Follow additional recommendations for Diabetes

Atherosclerosis:
Follow additional recommendations for Atherosclerosis

High fibrinogen:
Omega-3 oils, garlic, exercise, niacin, bromelain.

High homocysteine levels:
B6, B12 and folic acid. (NOTE: Maxi Multi contains optimal doses of these nutrients. Take additional B6, B12 and folic acid only if you are not taking Maxi Multi, MyPacks or the equivalent).

High ferritin (storage iron):

Some Fun With Politics:

This just in from one of our correspondents - this on-line questionnaire does an eerily good job of calculating who should be your presidential candidate based upon your views. Try it for yourself!

http://www.vajoe.com/candidate_calculator.html

Laughter is Good Medicine: Some Truly Useful Information This Week

We all know that medicine uses a number of different units of measure - ways of measuring and describing things. There are European units of measure, metric units, English units, American units, and other "standard" and "non-standard" units of measure to be found - this is one of the things that gives a careful doctor or nurse headaches! Some of the units of measure we work with are familiar to most folks and many know roughly the conversions from one to another - a kilogram is about 2.2 pounds, an inch is about 2.5 centimeters, a liter is just a few drops more than a quart, and so on - others are more esoteric, and in the interest of educating our readers (and ourselves) we are including the following conversion

Conversion Units for the Scientifically Challenged

  • Ratio of an igloo's circumference to its diameter = Eskimo Pi
  • 2000 pounds of Chinese soup = Won ton
  • 1 millionth of a mouthwash = 1 microscope
  • Time between slipping on a peel and smacking the pavement = 1 bananosecond
  • Weight an evangelist carries with God = 1 billigram
  • Time it takes to sail 220 yards at 1 nautical mile per hour = Knotfurlong
  • 16.5 feet in the Twilight Zone = 1 Rod Serling
  • Half of a large intestine = 1 semicolon
  • 1,000,000 aches = 1 megahurtz
  • Basic unit of laryngitis = 1 hoarsepower
  • Shortest distance between two jokes = A straight line
  • 453.6 graham crackers = 1 pound cake
  • 1 million microphones = 1 megaphone
  • 2 million bicycles = 2 megacycles
  • 365.25 days = 1 unicycle
  • 2000 mockingbirds = 2 kilomockingbirds
  • 52 cards = 1 decacards
  • 1 kilogram of falling figs = 1 Fig Newton
  • 1000 milliliters of wet socks = 1 literhosen
  • 1 millionth of a fish = 1 microfiche
  • 1 trillion pins = 1 terrapin
  • 10 rations = 1 decoration
  • 100 rations = 1 C-ration
  • 2 monograms = 1 diagram
  • 4 nickels = 2 paradigms
  • 2.4 statute miles of intravenous surgical tubing at Yale University Hospital = 1 IV League
  • 100 Senators = Not 1 decision

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