Archive for August, 2010

The Secret To Why It Hurts So Much Even though all you did was bend over to tie up your shoelace.

Monday, August 30th, 2010

I would guess that at one point or another you have had some type of pain in your body. This is a pretty safe assumption. I would bet that you have also had some kind of problem that was brought on by something very minor. Let me give you an example. You wake up in the morning and walk into the bathroom and as you go to squeeze the toothpaste out of the tube you drop the lid on the floor. So you bend down to pick it up and zap, lightning sharp pain shoots up your spine and back down again. You try to stand up straight but for some reason it feels like someone is pressing against your back causing you to hunch over and making it impossible to straighten up.

How about another typical pain invoking experience. You rush out the door because you are late for your appointment. As you settle into the car you remember that you forgot your keys so you hurry back into the house retrieve them and return to the car. As you start the engine and turn your head to back out of the driveway…whammo, someone stuck you with a hot barbecue poker in the back of the neck causing you great difficulty to return your head to a normal position without feeling that searing pain that we all enjoy. So it may not be a toothpaste lid or the turning of your head that provokes you to fall to your knees in agony, but I am almost certain that you have experienced a similar type situation in which the action you performed such not have caused SO MUCH PAIN!!! There are a few different responses to this type of situation. Before we talk about those, let’s just get real philosophical for a moment.

If you were hanging out with Hippocrates right now at Starbucks sipping on a Latte and talking about life and science and the human experience, how do you think he would respond if you asked him if it was normal for the body to respond like yours did when you bent over to pick up that heavy toothpaste lid or when you whipped your head around to back the cart out of the dirt road. I would guess that he would first ask you what toothpaste was and then once that was cleared up he would tell you ……NO. This is not a normal physiological response for your body to such a minimal action. The reaction does not equal the action.

Ok, philosophy class being over let’s get back to how you would respond to this situation. Here are 5 common mistakes that I have observed from people who experience these types of situations. 1. I put a heating pad (hot water bottle/hot tub/long, hot shower) on the area and it felt great. I am not against heating pads or heat but here is the situation. When you have an acute injury (acute = from the time the injury occurs to at least 72 hours after it occurs) you never put heat on it. Heat opens up the blood vessels which are already engorged even more causing more swelling and fluid accumulation in the injured area. This will result in relaxation for up to 12 hours after heat use and then pain worse than the initial event after the trip to lala land has ended. There are exceptions but for the majority of people please resist the urge to use heat unless I’ve told otherwise.

The second is thinking that it would go away but it has been two to three weeks and the pain hasn’t stopped.

Ouch, this one is not good! The real question from me to you is why you thought that the pain would go away. Let me give you an analogy. Pretend the oil light on your car goes on, would you continue driving until it went out and just assume that the problem went away. I hope not. This is the best analogy that I can think of to relate to the pain signal that your body is sending you. Don’t pretend there isn’t something wrong. Get to the root of the problem. Come get adjusted immediately or as soon as possible after the initial event.

The third is thinking I don’t know why this happened, I am totally healthy, and there is nothing wrong with me.

This is my favorite one from the men. Guys, we have to admit to some facts. Women are much better at taking care of themselves then we are. The reason is because they are willing to tell someone when they aren’t feeling well and then they try to get help for it. Generally speaking, men are much more willing to put up with little problems that they experience. This is not good in the long run. One little problem + one little problem + one problem = One BIG PROBLEM. The proof is that women tend to live something like 4 years longer than men. Surprise, surprise, I wonder if we men just think Oh well we aren’t going to live as long anyways so why not just put up with what we got and die sooner. This is of course some faulty logic because if we did take care of ourselves we would live longer.

The forth is I know that I only need one or two adjustments and everything will be fine. The only man I know in history who performed one treatment on someone and they were fine was Jesus. I am not Jesus. I don’t know any chiropractors named Jesus. Normally when people tell me the chiropractor fixed them in one adjustment and I look in their files, or consult with the other chiropractors I see that they have been adjusted 4 times on the low end and 8-10 on the high end (normal, about 6 visits) for an acute problem. My goal is to see you out of pain as quickly as possible so that you can function normally, but my goals do not end there! Which leads me to the next common mistake…

The fifth is not getting adjusted regularly to prevent these occurrences in your life. Now I am not saying that if you get regular adjustments your life is going to be perfect. Life is not perfect. I myself get regular adjustments. I don’t stop getting adjusted all together because I know that if I didn’t get regular adjustments and a flare up occurred, it would be a lot worse than it normally is. Our bodies are not perfect but if we work preventatively to keep things moving and aligned throughout the course of our lives a lot of these irritating pains could be avoided.

The joints of your spine are some of the key messengers of your nervous system. If they are not working there is no way for you to know because you cannot see them. Pain is your only signal and by then a lot of times it is already too late. Chiropractors are trained to detect problems with these joints and help prevent the pain before it occurs. Science has proven that nerve endings are all affected during an adjustment. The goal of treatment is to get you out of pain first of all, but to keep you pain free and fully functioning is the main idea.

Chiropractors In San Diego Offer New Twist To Eliminate Neck Pain With Spinal Decompression.

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

The chiropractic doctors at New Century Spine Centers in San Diego are using an FDA cleared medical device that solves 86% of back pain. For many years, chiropractors across the globe have used spinal decompression for low back pain and spinal stenosis. This revolutionary treatment is available now in San Diego for neck pain and many headaches.

Countless failed surgery patients have finally found relief after surgery made them worse.  With this new technology, it’s obvious they may have never needed surgery in the first place. There is a very good reason why thousands of former neck pain and headache sufferers are calling non-surgical spinal decompression the “eighth wonder of the world.” This amazing new medical breakthrough is responsible for cracking the neck pain code for thousands of former pain sufferers.  Many pain victims previously tried everything and were thought to be hopeless cases.

To watch videos of advanced spinal decompression chiropractic technology, those interested can go to the San Diego website at http://www.BackCareTreatment.com.  According to Dr. Michael Pritsker, a chiropractor and spinal decompression DRX-9000 specialist at New Century Spine Centers, “Neck and back pain can be debilitating and affects thousands of people each year. But thanks to new advances in neck pain treatment for disc injuries and muscle spasms, thousands of neck and back pain sufferers are living pain free and enjoying life to its fullest.”

Dr. Dirk Kancilia, DC, founder of New Century Spine Centers says “by utilizing advanced spinal decompression therapy together with the best skilled back doctors and sophisticated diagnostic testing, we are able to give the patient the best possible treatment for their neck pain. We work closely with medical doctors, spinal surgeons, chiropractors, and drx9000 spinal decompression specialists to eliminate their neck pain and spinal stenosis. Whether its neck pain victims that requested our free report from www.SanDiegoBackPainTreatment.com or if they were referred by their friends, family, or chiropractic doctor, they can rest assure that they are in the right hands at New Century Spine Centers in San Diego. Up until now, there were only three options that existed to deal with the pain from damaged neck conditions. They were swallowing pain medication for pain management, going under the knife with spinal surgery, or just dealing with the pain. New Century Spine Centers in San Diego has some of the top spinal decompression doctors in San Diego. They have also brought in some of the most advanced spine decompression therapies available for non-surgical treatment of neck pain.

Neck spinal decompression therapy in San Diego has been successful with even the most severe cases. It has even worked when all else failed.  Cervical spinal decompression works for neck pain, headaches, herniated discs, spinal stenosis, bulging discs, degenerative disc disease, a relapse or failure following surgery, migraine headaches, facet syndromes, carpal tunnel syndrome, and arm pain.

The really good news in all of this is that it is not something you have to continue to do for the rest of your life!  So it is not a big commitment. Patients typically undergo 15 to 20 treatments sessions.  Each treatment last between 25-30 minutes.  This, of course, depends on individual cases and is determined by a thorough evaluation by the chiropractic doctor. It is important to note that many patients get substantial, immediate relief after just a few treatments.  Some patients get substantial relief even after just one treatment.

Cervical spinal decompression treatment is FDA cleared and covered by many insurance companies. If the insurance does not cover the treatment, it is much more affordable than many back and neck surgeries. For debilitating neck and arm pain, it may be the best option.

Due to the high demand for information for neck spinal decompression therapy, they have set up two options to get information. Those interested can visit the website at www.BackCareTreatment.com. They have also set up a 24 hour toll free recorded hotline where people with neck pain can call to get a free report and video. That toll free number is 1-888-611-2042. New Century Spine Centers is located in the Mission Valley area of San Diego. Don’t wait another day suffering in pain. With this new advanced technology, thousands of people are free from neck and back pain.

Antioxidants…TOO Much of A Good Thing May NOT Be A Good Thing.

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

Popular belief is that antioxidants prevent heart, Parkinson’s And Alzheimer’s Disease. Some research shows that too much may cause one of these dreaded diseases. It’s a very popular and believable theory, mainly because it makes sense.  It has also given hope to many people in search of ways to enhance and extend their lives naturally.  And let’s not forget, it’s profitable for many professionals. Patients regularly ask us at the chiropractic office at New Century Spine Centers in San Diego which supplements to take.

What we are referring to is the belief that taking antioxidants is good for you.  Many believe they can prevent such diseases as heart, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.  A study published in the August 10th issue of Cell sheds new light on this claim. It says that too much of a certain antioxidant may even cause heart disease in the long run.

Understanding how antioxidants are thought to work is very important. Heart, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and other deadly diseases are associated with oxidative stress, in which “free radical” molecules are produced in reaction to oxygen intake. Free radicals travel through the body, triggering chemical reactions that damage proteins causing them to form aggregates. It is believed that antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E offer health-promoting benefits by protecting against damaging free radicals that damage the body. That’s why many people take antioxidants to prevent heart and other protein-aggregate diseases in many.

A study was done on laboratory mice in the University of Utah. Researchers found that an overload of natural antioxidants could actually lead to heart failure. This study had some very important findings.

Excessive levels of reduced glutathione can cause reductive stress. Glutathione is one of your body’s most powerful antioxidants. When your cells work properly, they produce just the right amount of reduced glutathione. This is healthy for your body. In some people, a mutated gene can disrupt the fine balance. This causes the cells to produce too much glutathione.

There was a study done with laboratory mice with failing hearts caused by mutant alpha B-Crystallin. Researchers found increased activity of the biochemical pathway leading to high levels of reduced glutathione in the animals. Glutathione is regulated at multiple steps. It is primarily regulated by the G6PD enzyme. To establish the connection between reduced glutathione and heart failure, the researchers mated mutant alpha B-Crystallin mice that carried too much G6PD with mice that had far lower levels.

The resulting offspring had normal levels of reduced glutathione and did not get heart failure. The researchers found that by lowering the level of reduced glutathione in mice with failing hearts, they were able to increase their rate of survival dramatically. Lowering the level of reduced glutathione dramatically changed the survival of these mice. The researchers stated that basically they prevented them from getting heart failure. The researchers also added that although many people take antioxidants to prevent heart and other protein-aggregate diseases, there actually is scant evidence to prove they work.

This field of medicine has not appreciated reductive stress and its influence on disease. This is about balance needed in the environment of the cells in our body. It can have profound consequences on the treatment of heart disease and other grave disorders.

This just shows how too much of a good thing can possibly be a bad thing. This is a concept that is misunderstood by most of the population. This probably leads to many health problems in many individuals. Many have a skewed concept of how the body functions and what exactly optimal performance or optimal health truly is.

Let’s consider performance for example.  Many athletes are constantly trying to boost performance with supplementation and vitamins.  Some use natural legal products. Some use other synthetic and possibly illegal substances such as anabolic steroids and human growth hormone. Some athletes take anabolic steroids to boost performance.  These are steroids such as testosterone which help build muscle, strength and reduce recovery time. And they naturally occur in your body for these and many other purposes.

Naturally occurring steroids are also good for you.  If naturally occurring steroids do these good things for you, logic has it that increasing their levels will do more good things for you. And it is true in many instances. Athletes that take the right steroids, increase their athletic performance.  And it increases it a great deal.

However, this is not considered to be OPTIMAL performance.  This is a PATHOLOGICAL performance. Here is why.  Optimal performance is when your body is functioning at the highest level for your given genetic potential.   Anything beyond that is considered abnormal.  It is considered to be pathological.

It’s the same old saying that too much of a good thing may be bad for you. And, it’s the same as far as antioxidants are concerned as well. It makes complete sense that the proper level of antioxidants is good for you.  And they probably help fight disease such as heart, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.  But too much can be bad.

There is a perfect balance in your body where everything functions at 100% of your genetic potential.  More is not better – it is worse. And as the study mentioned in this article demonstrated, too much of a good thing can be Poison! Too many approach the use of natural supplements like the athlete approaches the use of steroids. If a little is good – a lot is better.

This is why choosing and taking supplements (of any kind) is much more involved than going into GNC and aimlessly picking a bunch that are popular  or sound good. The old (and uneducated) belief that supplements can’t hurt you because they are natural is bologna. Snake venom is natural.  So is mercury.  Some of the most dangerous substances in the world are natural. The supplements you take should depend on your diet and particular needs. Clearly, it’s all about finding YOUR perfect balance. To find out more, visit New Century Spine Centers in San Diego.

Can Chiropractic Get To The Cause Of A Headache

Monday, August 16th, 2010

Continuous headaches are a mystery to many of us. As a chiropractor, I regularly treat headaches and migraines. Why they occur seems to be the most common question to many health care providers. Some patients’ migraine headaches can be easily explained but many seem to get headaches for no apparent reason at all. An often-overlooked cause of headaches is the spine and spinal trauma to the neck. How does this occur to many individuals?

There are delicate attachments of connective tissue that link muscles in your neck areas around your spinal cord. One theory to the headaches is that tension can develop in these structures producing headaches and head pain. Another possibility to headaches is that they may be due to forward head posture.

Forward head posture occurs when the head is thrust forward in the classic bad posture pose. This is a little like a turtle neck. It is also sometimes referred to as a military neck. This can remove the natural curve in the neck causing undue stress on the spine and head. Since the head is quite heavy weighing approximately 10-14 pounds, the muscles have to counter this weight. When the neck muscles resist the load of the head, they can develop tensions, knots, trigger points, and sometimes spasms in the neck. Normally the head is more balanced over both the shoulders.

Another neck problem that may cause headaches is a joint injury/sprain that can occur after whiplash trauma from a car accident. Over some time, this may lead to joint blockage where there is not the normal free and fluid motion from side to side. Quite often other joints must compensate for this lack of movement with hypermobility of the joints. Your muscles can become tense in these areas to protect the spine from unnatural movements overall.

These types of disorders are very common in society. They should be ruled out before leaning towards using medications over the long term. It is always important to have an accurate diagnosis before proceeding with any treatment. If your headaches have become chronic long-term and just never seem to go away, it is a sign that you are not getting to the cause of the problem.

Correcting neck disorders when they occur is always a best bet when it comes to treatment. Headache can sometimes seem to come out of nowhere. If there is history of neck trauma in your past, the neck can and should be a part of your headache management strategy. At the minimum the neck needs to be examined by the proper physician.

Chiropractic care has been shown in multiple clinical trials to help patients with both tension-type and migraine headaches. In these studies, the neck or cervical spine is adjusted based on local problems of poor posture and mobility. The chiropractors at New Century Spine Centers in San Diego use chiropractic care, active release technique, and spinal decompression therapy to fix the cause of headaches.

Natural Pain Relief Ginger Supplements May Reduce Post Exercise Pain

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

A recent study published in The Journal of Pain found both raw and heat treated ginger reduced the pain associated with muscle injury when compared with a placebo. “The primary novel finding was that supplementation with both raw and heat-treated ginger attenuated muscle pain intensity 24 hours after eccentric exercise,” wrote the researchers, led by Chris Black, PhD, from Georgia College and State University. The researchers also added, “Consumption of raw ginger resulted in a 25 percent reduction while heat-treated ginger resulted in a 23 percent reduction in muscle-pain intensity 24 hours postexercise.” It is believed ginger may have anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain killing) properties, similar to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.

Morning Coffee May Not Be Giving You The Boost You Think It Does!

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

Think coffee helps you wake up and gives you more energy? Recent research from British scientists says just the opposite. Bristol University researchers found coffee drinkers develop a tolerance to both the anxiety-producing and the stimulating effects of caffeine. In other words, drinking coffee only brings you back to where you should be without coffee – not better or more stimulated. “Although frequent consumers feel alerted by caffeine, especially by their morning tea, coffee, or other caffeine-containing drinks, evidence suggests that this is actually merely the reversal of the fatiguing effects of acute caffeine withdrawal,” wrote the scientists led by Peter Rogers of Bristol’s Department of Experimental Psychology.

Can Sunscreens Be Causing Cancer?

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

For many years, we have known two things to be true. First, the sun is bad for you, and therefore, exposure should be limited. Most people don’t know this, but the sun has three types of “rays,” not just two. The first is ultraviolet C light, also known as UVC. This ray usually does not reach our planet’s surface and this is good because it is believed only brief exposure to UVC rays is fatal. Next is ultraviolet B, also known as UVB rays. These have long been considered the “tanning rays.” They are strongest during the summer months when the Earth’s orbit is closest to the Sun. UVB rays are what produce a “sun tan.”

For many years, sunblocks and sunscreens only attempted to block UVB because science was unaware of the effects of UVA rays (the third type of sun ray) on the body. UVA was believed to be the safe ray in the 1980s, which spawned the growth and popularity of the artificial sun bed industry – some dermatologists even backed this artificial tanning! But, science now believes UVA rays actually do more damage than UVB rays! UVA rays are not dependant on how far the Earth is from the Sun – so the effects are the same all year round. What’s more, UVA penetrates light clothing and car windshields… even many hats.  Over-exposure to the sun has been linked to premature aging and even deadly skin cancer.

This brings us to the second so called truth which is limit exposure to the harmful rays of the sun by using high SPF sunscreens and sunblocks. For years, the sunblock industry has been booming with the promise their products protect you from the sun’s aging and cancerous rays. But, research now says these “truths” may not be so “true.” For example, there is no consensus whether sunscreens prevent skin cancer. According to the Environmental Working Groups’ (ewg.org) finding, “The Food and Drug Administration’s 2007 draft sunscreen safety regulations say: FDA is not aware of data demonstrating that sunscreen use alone helps prevent skin cancer.” (FDA 2007). The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) agrees. The IARC recommends clothing, hats and shade as primary barriers to UV radiation and writes “sunscreens should not be the first choice for skin cancer prevention and should not be used as the sole agent for protection against the sun” (IARC 2001a). Even worse, there is evidence emerging that sunscreen may actually increase the risk of skin cancer!

Researchers speculate the cause or causes may be lack of UVA protection by most sunscreen for over 30 years, improper usage, staying in the sun longer with sunscreens and some of the ingredients. One big problem is the SPF (sun protection factor) myth. In 2007, the FDA published draft regulations that would prohibit manufacturers from labeling sunscreens over 50 SPF. The FDA stated that anything over 50 SPF was “inherently misleading.” Even an SPF of 50 can be misleading because of the way most people use sunscreen.

In the real world, tests show people apply only one-half to one fifth of the amount used when testing the sunscreen. A person using one-fourth the amount of sunscreen with an SPF of 30 only actually gets an SPF of 2.3. The same person using a sunscreen with SPF 100 ends up with only SPF 3.2.

Then, there are the potential problems with the ingredients found in sunscreens. For example, oxybenzone, a common ingredient, is a known hormone disruptor. Retinyl palmitate (a form of Vitamin A also commonly used in sunscreens) may increase the risk of skin cancer. According to Environmental Working Groups, “The publicly available data from FDA’s new study suggest that when used in sun-exposed skin care products, retinyl palmitate and related chemicals may increase skin damage and elevate skin cancer risk instead of protecting the skin.”

Also, according to Environmental Working Groups, 41% of all sunscreens contain retinyl palmitate. All of this may be surprising but what’s even more shocking is that the FDA first issued draft sunscreen regulations in 1978 and last updated the draft in 2007. The regulations are still not final, despite multiple announcements of impending completion. Until the agency formally issues its rules, companies are not required to verify their sunscreens work, including testing for SPF levels, checking waterproof claims or providing UVA protection. Nearly one in eight sunscreens does not block UVA rays. Many carry the seal of “The Skin Cancer Foundation.” According to the Environmental Working Groups, “The Skin Cancer Foundation (SCF) lends its logo to hundreds of sun protection products. SCF approval is easy, just document that your product has an SPF of at least 15 and provide results of basic tests (for SPF, skin reactions and water and sweat resistance, if such claims are made).

Confused? If you are, then you are not alone. Here’s something that will make the most of the confusion Disappear. Since sunscreens are probably not as safe as once thought, the best thing to do is stay out of the sun during its peak hours (10:00am – 2:00pm) and whenever possible, wear protective clothing instead of chemicals. Don’t forget, some sun is absolutely necessary for Vitamin D production and proper health. The amount of sun you should get depends on your skin type but you should NEVER burn.

Heart Surgeons Get Wake-Up Call On Common Procedure

Monday, August 9th, 2010

On May 15th, 2007, the Commonwealth Fund issued a report entitled, “Mirror, Mirror on the Wall: An International Update on the Comparative Performance of American Health Care.”

The results were not good. In fact, here’s what the first sentence of the report had to say: “Despite having the most costly health system in the world, the United States consistently underperforms on most dimensions of performance, relative to other countries. Are you Shocked?  You shouldn’t be.  Why?  This is because this is nothing new at all.

According to the report: “Among the six nations studied—Australia, Canada, Germany, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States—the U.S. ranks last, as it did in the 2006 and 2004 editions of Mirror, Mirror. Most troubling, the U.S. fails to achieve better health outcomes than the other countries, and as shown in the earlier editions, the U.S. is last on dimensions of access, patient safety, efficiency, and equity. The 2007 edition includes data from the six countries and incorporates patients’ and physicians’ survey results on care experiences and ratings on various dimensions of care.”

Overall, Germany and the UK topped the list, with Canada and the United States bringing up the rear. Also worth noting here is that America spends close to three times as much for its mediocre approach to health per capita ($6,102) annually than does New Zealand ($2,083), and almost twice as much as Canada ($3,165). Even worse, American doctors are the slowest to change when it comes to technology, again, with the lowest numbers in relation to using electronic medical records or keeping up with the latest treatments via the Internet.

Now here is something that you will probably find interesting, even puzzling.  According to the report, “the area where the U.S. health care system performs best is preventive care, an area that has been monitored closely for over a decade by managed care plans.”

It’s always been abundantly clear that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. For example, the May 9th edition of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) had an article entitled: “Cardiologists Get Wake-up Call on Stents.” According to the article, “Patients with stable coronary artery disease treated with stents and optimal medical therapy fare no better than those who receive optimal medical therapy alone, according to new findings from a large clinical trial.”

For many cardiologists, the results serve as a wake-up call that they need to reevaluate how frequently they offer stenting (which has slight risks associated with the intervention itself, as well as stent-associated thrombotic events) as a first option for relief of stable angina. The data comes from the Clinical Outcomes Utilizing Revascularization and Aggressive Drug Evaluation (COURAGE) Trial, reported here in March at the annual conference of the American College of Cardiology.

It seems like research is simply confirming what many thought to be true all along.  Prevention is far superior to invasive “crisis” procedures after years and years of neglect.  It is abundantly clear you cannot abuse or neglect your body and health and have the wonders of modern medicine save you.

Inability To Handle Stress Most Likely Leads To Early Death Unless…

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

If someone you love or you are a “worry-wart”, reading the rest of this article may prevent several deadly diseases and add years to your life. Allow me to explain. Why some people are healthy and others get sick has been a researched and heavily debated topic for a long, long time. Some give almost all the credit to genes. Basically you are pre-programmed at birth. Mother nature has dealt you a certain “hand” and that’s it. You will either be healthy, or sick, and there is nothing much you can do about it. Let’s consider for example, the “cancer gene.” If cancer is “in your genes,” you’re doomed. If not, you’re lucky. Supporters of this philosophy commonly use this example as proof: One person is young, eats all the right food and exercises and still gets cancer or has a massive heart attack. Yet, someone else eats junk, smokes, drinks and never exercised a day in their life and lives to be 95. Funny thing is you often hear these people say, “You can walk out of your house and get hit by a bus tomorrow,” as an excuse to completely neglect their health and future. Others don’t give genes much credit. They say it’s ALL (or at least MOST) how you live your life and take care of yourself. And then there are those somewhere in between. To them, both genes and how you live your life are important factors. Their argument is that the young guy or gal that took care of himself or herself and STILL got sick would have gotten sick sooner. And, the 95-year-old may have lived even longer if he or she took care of himself or herself. Obviously, all this is something to think about. Genes obviously have SOMETHING to do with our potential. But by how much is it? And is it as limiting as many once thought? The simple fact that our average life span is much different today than it was 100 or even 50 years ago should tell you something. There are factors that affect our lifespan and help determine if we live those years healthy and happy or sick and miserable. According to an April 5, 2007 issue of Science Daily, there is a broad consensus that there are five basic personality traits. These five are: Extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, emotional stability and openness to experience. There are sub-categories – but these five are what makes us up. But here’s what’s really important: Two of these traits – emotional stability and conscientiousness appear to be directly linked to your health and how long you may live. How? In psychology, the lack of emotional stability is called “neuroticism.” In other words, it’s a person’s tendency towards “hand wringing and negative thinking.” It is believed by many that high levels of neuroticism are inherited and such people do not handle stress well. They are often moody, anxious and uncomfortable. Studies have also shown a correlation to increased mortality. So, if “neuroticism” is inherited and leads to health problems and increased mortality, are some people simply pre-programmed to be unhealthy and die young? That’s where a Purdue University psychologist comes into the picture. According to the April 5, 2007 issue of Science Daily: “Mroczek decided to explore this idea. Using a standard measure of neuroticism, he tracked more than 1,600 men over 12 years, recording not only how neurotic they were at the start, but also whether they got more or less neurotic over time. He also looked at mortality risk for these same men over an 18-year span. As reported in the May issue of Psychological Science, those who increased over time in neuroticism was a ticket to an early grave. In other words, these men–all middle age or older to begin with–did not grow old gracefully. They likely got more and more stressed, worried or fretful, and this downward spiral increased their risk for dying, mostly from cancer and heart disease. The good news is that men with a fretful temperament, if they managed for whatever reason to calm down a bit over time, had survival rates similar to those of emotionally stable men.” So what’s the big lesson here for you, your health, and your longevity? First, it seems pretty clear your attitude does a whole heck of a lot more than just affect your success in business! Several studies show the way you think can have a profound impact on how healthy or sick you are. Namely diseases like cancer and heart disease. How? We don’t think anybody knows 100% for sure. It makes sense that stress (and the way you handle it) produces chemicals that suppress the immune system. This will have countless detrimental effects like aging: on the outside as well as the inside. But the real point here is: WHO CARES? Who really cares exactly how all this works on the cellular level? The bottom line is: it happens. Negative thinking, a lot of it, over an extended period of time will probably age you, make you sick and take years off your life. And, an even more important point: Changing the way you think and handle stress can stop the process. In other words, being a natural born “worry-wart”… You can change the way you handle stress and reduce the negative effects. Or, at least that’s what the above-mentioned study shows. And it only makes sense. Have you ever taken a walk in the dark and had some loud noise scare you? What happened? Your eyes widened. Your heartbeat drastically increased. Your brain signaled your body to produce adrenalin and other “flight or fight” chemicals were dumped into your bloodstream. At that very moment, you were wide awake, stronger than usual and could run like an Olympic track star! But what happens shortly afterward? You crash… right? You come back down and feel exhausted. This, my friends, is a natural high and hangover. When you are constantly stressed and worry and don’t deal with it well… you will continually go through a similar reaction. Your body and mind basically go through the ringer. It just makes sense that if you learn how to deal with the stress more effectively – you will be healthier and lives longer. Common sense doesn’t always match up with scientific proof, but it seems to in this example. I know what you’re thinking. How do you learn to deal with stress if you are a natural born “worry-wart?” The first thing is to realize NOTHING is ever as good or bad as it seems. And always change the things you can and forget about the things you can’t. Besides that, routine exercise programs and meditation have both been show to reduce stress. Maybe if we start enjoying this wonderful life a little – it will get even better and we will get more of it!

The Simple Secret That DOUBLES Your Chance Of Living For Over 100 Years

Wednesday, August 4th, 2010

How would you like to live past 100? I guess that’s kind of a loaded question. Like the show, “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?” Of course you do! Who doesn’t want to be a millionaire? Well, not Bill Gates. Becoming a millionaire would make him poor; at least, RELATIVELY poor. Everything is relative. For example, living to 100 doesn’t interest me… if… I’m sick or in pain. On the other hand – I’d love to join the century club as long as the quality of my life… and health… was great.

You see, it’s all VERY relative.

That’s being said, here are the findings of a recent study that identified something that doubles your chance of reaching… and living past… the age of 100…

Here are the results according to an article in Earth times: “The researchers, Dr. Leonid Gavrilov and Dr. Natalia Gavrilova, say the age at which a mother gives birth is a major factor in the number of years the offspring lives. The chances of the child living up the age of 100 and beyond are almost double for a child born to a woman below 25 years of age.” The husband and wife team had previously discovered birth order is a major factor in longevity. For example, first-born children, especially daughters, are more likely to live past 100 years of age. The recent study shows the age of the mother is more important than any of the other factors. Gavrilov and Gavrilova used data from the U.S. Census, the Social Security Administration and

genealogical records to identify 198 centenarians born in the U.S. from 1890 to 1893 and then traced their family histories to establish possible predictors of their longevity. They found being born to a young mother had an important role in reaching the age of 100. There are other factors also like growing up in the Western part of the U.S., spending part of one’s childhood on a farm and being born first. They feel the study needs further elaboration and deeper research. Gavrilov suspects the younger women’s eggs are different in their quality, and the best ones, the most vigorous, go first to fertilization. The researchers are of the opinion that their findings may have important social implications because many women tend to postpone childbearing to later ages due to career demands.

Good News And Bad News…

There appears to be both good news and some bad news. For example, if your mother was under the age of 25 when you were born… you’re probably doing back flips right now. On the other hand, if your mother was a little older when you were born, you may be a little depressed by what you just read. Well, the real truth of the matter is: you shouldn’t be too elated or discouraged by what Dr. Garilov and Dr. Garilova uncovered…

Here’s why: The first thing to understand is that correlation is not causation. This “study” was comprised of data from 198 people who were born from 1890 – 1893. 198 is not a lot of people and may not be representative of the overall population. In other words, just because a certain percentage of the study group who lived to be over 100 years old were born to a mother under the age of 25 does not necessarily mean that was the CAUSE of anything. For example – let’s say we were trying to find out what causes certain people to have high IQs. So, we looked at some data of 198 people with IQs of 150 and above. And in that data, we found that a high percentage of these people’s parents had blue eyes. Would your conclusion be that blue eyes are a cause of high IQ? Of course not! It is simply a correlation that has nothing to do with causation, especially if your data came from a part of the world where a large portion of the population has blue eyes!!!!

The second important thing about the study is that 1890 – 1893 was a long, long, long time ago. In terms of health and what we know about health…

It Is An Eternity!!!

To put this in perspective, let’s take a look at a few key medical discoveries and when they took place (plus a few nonmedical facts to make it even more interesting!):

1895: D.D. Palmer discovers Chiropractic. Wilhelm Roentgen discovers X-rays and the technology is immediately introduced into medicine.

1900: The invention of an easy-to-use device to measure blood pressure leads to the discovery of a new disease: hypertension. Measuring blood pressure gradually appears in general practice

1905: Scientists identify the organism responsible for Syphilis: Treponema pallidum.

1918-1919: Worldwide epidemic of influenza kills an estimated 20 million people (World population is approx. 1.5 billion at that time.)

1922: Banting discovers insulin.

1928: Fleming discovers penicillin, but basically ignores its implications. It is not developed as an antibiotic until 1941.

1935 – Social Security Act is signed into law. Something to think about: At the time of its passing, the age to start collecting is 65 and the average lifespan? 67.

1936: Volwiler and Tabern discover the general anesthetic Pentothal, which is administered intravenously.

1945: Women first admitted to Harvard Medical School.

1949 – Last case of Smallpox in the United States.

1950: First organ transplant. First modern credit card introduced.

1951: Color T.V. introduced. Truman signs peace treaty with Japan… officially ending World War II.

1952: Car seat belt introduced. Polio vaccine created.

1953: Watson and Crick discover DNA.

1954: Report says cigarette smoke causes cancer. Segregation ruled illegal in the United States.

1960: The Laser is invented.

1961: Soviets launch first man into space.

1967: First heart transplant. First Superbowl.

1969: Neil Armstrong becomes the first man to walk on the moon.

1970: Computer floppy disc introduced.

1971: VCR introduced.

1972: Pocket calculator introduced.

1978: First test tube baby.

1981: IBM introduces the first personal computer.

1987: DNA first used to convict criminals.

1989: President Bush announces that he does not like broccoli.

1993: Use of Internet grows exponentially.

1997: Scientists clone sheep.

Pretty interesting list… wouldn’t you say? It’s amazing that the Internet was virtually unknown only 13 years ago! And no one had a computer in his or her home 25 years ago! And that’s only a tiny fraction of all the changes that have taken place in the last 100 years. Incredible. This is why I’m not too sure you should be concerned about living to be 100 if your mother was over 25 when she gave birth to you. There are other factors that affect your lifespan that you can control such as weight, activity level (exercise) and stress.

…And remember, if you have any questions or concerns about your health, talk to us. Please contact us with your questions. We are here to help and enjoy participating in your life long good health.