Volume 12 • Number 7 • July 2011

The politics and economics of health care are so dominant that our President had to abandon his plan to push the Single Payer option favored by most doctors and patients (I feel it would be best for each state to have its own version.[1]) Big Pharma and the Insurance Companies preferred a potpourri/mess of regulations that in the end mostly favors them and their bottom line, profits. In the meantime, 47 million Americans have no health care and we slip further and further down in the rankings of people’s health in the world, despite our country spending double the amount the top 5 countries spend per citizen.

Fortunately, solutions are available, even at top ranked medical schools in the USA, where Integrative Medicine departments are implementing simple lifestyle and environmental changes that strike at the root of disease.[2] Doctors and patients are beginning to realize that the pharmaceutical approach, while helpful in a crisis, is not the only, nor the best way to address chronic problems. The tsunami of expensive “me, too” drugs is increasingly seen for what it is, a cash cow for Big Pharma in a hypercompetitive market that does not serve patients well.

The United States would do well to watch (England) carefully how the “burden of illness” and “wider societal benefits” come to affect pharmaceutical pricing, decision making, and sources of influence over the interpretation of societal value.”[3]

Yet, President Obama has given away our country’s power to negotiate lower prices on drugs the government buys in bulk for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries because “the business of America is business.” This mentality has had its day and the results are plain for all to see. Surely there is room to compromise, whether we come from the left or the right. Ideally, our society could modify the infamous “bottom line” to include profits, social and environmental responsibility, like England seems to be contemplating.[4] Hugo Rodier, MD

Studies with minimal commentary, after exhausting your patience with ranting editorial

Social rejection shares somatosensory representations with physical pain.” It hurts physically to get dumped. J. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 2011; Epub March 28, 2011

Confronting reality: pitfalls of calorie posting.” Not worth the trouble; do you see people losing weight? American J. Clinical Nutrition 2011 93: 4 679

Front-of-Package Nutrition Labeling – An Abuse of Trust by the Food Industry?” Pretending to inform the public, the food industry ramps up marketing ploys. NEJM 2011;364:2373

Exploring how calorie information and taxes on high-calorie foods influence lunch decisions.” The twinkie tax works in decreasing consumption. Am J Clin Nutr 2011;93:689

Subcutaneous adipose tissue in relation to subclinical atherosclerosis and cardiometabolic risk factors in midlife women.” Beer-belly= higher risk of heart disease. Am J Clin Nutr 2011;93:719

Energy, evolution, and human diseases.” If you want to lose weight and have a good immune system, quit eating garbage! Am J Clin Nutr 2011;93:875S, 891S

Short-term consumption of a high-fat diet impairs whole-body efficiency and cognitive function in sedentary men.” You are not thinking clearly if you believe that an occasional fatty meal is harmless. FASEB J. 2011;25:1088

Dietary Whey Protein Lowers the Risk for Metabolic Disease in Mice Fed a High-Fat Diet.” No, you are not a mouse, but whey can also help you with weight/cardiac/diabetic issues, especially if you cannot give up high fat foods. J. Nutrition 2011;141:582

DNA methylation in metabolic disorders.” B vitamins modify genetic tendencies, thereby lowering the risk of obesity and diabetes. Am J Clin Nutr 2011;93:897S

MTHFR 677C→T genotype is associated with folate and homocysteine concentrations in a large, population-based, double-blind trial of folic acid supplementation.” Some people need a metabolized form of folic acid, MTHFR, to accrue benefits. Am J Clin Nutr 2011;93:1365

Adjunctive L-Methylfolate May Help in treatment Resistant Depression.” L-methylfolate ~ MTHFR (see above.) 19th European Congress of Psychiatry, Vienna, 2011

Low Plasma Vitamin B-6 Status Affects Metabolism through the Kynurenine Pathway in Cardiovascular Patients with Systemic Inflammation.” Significant reduction of inflammation in vasculature and joints with B6. J. Nutrition 2011;141:611

Dietary B vitamin intake and incident premenstrual syndrome.” Processed foods lack B vitamins, which drive PMS. Low B vitamins also seen with GI abnormalities, heavy metals, metformin and acid-blocking pills. Am J Clin Nutr 2011;93:1080

The Association of Serum Phthalates and Parabens with Mammographic Breast Density.” Plastics/endocrine disruptors over stimulate breast, thus increasing the risk of breast cancer. They also mess with menses. J. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prevention 2011;20:718

Endocrine Disruptors and Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): Elevated Serum Levels of Bisphenol A in Women with PCOS.” Plastics disrupt ovarian function.
J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2011 96: E480

Targeting Dimethylarginine Dimethylaminohydrolases in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension: A New Approach to Improve Vascular Dysfunction?” The amino acid arginine works with B vitamins to improve tone/lining of ALL arteries. J. Circulation 2011;123:1156

Low Levels of Asymmetric Dimethylarginine in Children with Diabetes Mellitus Type I Compared with Healthy Children.” Arginine helps arterial health in diabetics and pre diabetics. J. Pediatrics 2011;158:602

Association between Oxidative Stress and Masked Hypertension in a Multi-Ethnic Population of Obese Children and Adolescents.” Lack of antioxidants in diet (like arginine) makes blood vessels stiffer = high blood pressure. J. Pediatrics2011;158:628

Serum α-Carotene Concentrations and Risk of Death Among US Adults: The Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey Follow-up Study.” Live longer eating carrots.
J. Arch Intern Med. 2011;171:507

A mitochondrial enzyme degrades carotenoids and protects against oxidative stress.” Add broccoli, spinach and sardines (Alpha lipoic acid, COQ10) to your carrots. FASEB J. 2011;25:948

Low plasma coenzyme Q10 levels and breast cancer risk in Chinese women.” See above.
J. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. Published Online First April 5, 2011; doi:10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-10-1261

Rapid Suppression of Growth Hormone Concentration by Overeating: Potential Mediation by Hyperinsulinemia.” Poor tissue renewal and growth with processed foods that increase risk of pre Diabetes/hypoglycemia. J. Clinical Endocrinology Metabolism 2011;96:824

Exposure to Room Light before Bedtime Suppresses Melatonin Onset and Shortens Melatonin Duration in Humans.” Don’t watch TV before falling asleep. Read with indirect light in the evening. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2011;96:E463

Blood Pressure and the Risk of Developing Diabetes in African Americans and Whites: ARIC, CARDIA, and the Framingham Heart Study.” If you have high blood pressure, you have a higher risk of developing diabetes. Think of “starched” blood vessels. J. Diabetes Care 2011;34:873

α-Lipoic acid can improve endothelial dysfunction in subjects with impaired fasting glucose.” Broccoli antioxidant protects arterial lining in pre diabetics. Journal Metabolism Clinical and Experimental 2011;60:480

Association of serum lycopene and brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity with metabolic syndrome.” So do tomatoes (see above.) J. Metabolism Clinical and Experimental 2011;60:537

Hemoglobin A1c as a Diagnostic Tool for Diabetes Screening and New-Onset Diabetes Prediction: A 6-year community-based prospective study.” A1c >5.9 = diabetes. A1c >5.6 = pre diabetes. J. Diabetes Care 2011;34:944

The Relationship Between β-Cell Function and Glycated Hemoglobin: Results from the Veterans Administration Genetic Epidemiology Study.” Another good diabetic screening is the Glucose Tolerance Test. Ask our doc to order insulin levels, too. J. Diabetes Care 2011;34:1006

Almond consumption improved glycemic control and lipid profiles in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.” If you chew them 40 times before swallowing they decrease appetite, too. Journal Metabolism Clinical and Experimental 2011;60:474

Microbiota regulates immune defense against respiratory tract influenza A virus infection.” Keep gut flora healthy (fiber, lots of fruits and veggies; limit antibiotics, acid-blocking pills, etc) and you will have a better chance against colds and the flu. PNAS 2011;108:5354

Facebook and depression in teens.” Either Facebook makes teens depressed or they are so depressed they log on Facebook. J. Pediatrics, Epub March 28th 2011

Rotenone and Paraquat Linked to Parkinson’s Disease: Human Exposure Study Supports Years of Animal Studies.” Pesticides are neurotoxic; they are derivatives of nerve gas used in WWI and WWII. J. Environmental Health Perspectives 2011;119:a259 & JAMA 2011;305:1188

Widely Used Pesticides with Previously Unknown Endocrine Activity Revealed as in Vitro Antiandrogens.” Dimethomorph, fludioxonil, fenhexamid, imazalil, ortho-phenylphenol, and pirimiphos-methyl also mess with your hormones. J. Environ Health Perspect 2011;119:794

Green tea polyphenol EGCG blunts androgen receptor function in prostate cancer.” If you cannot afford to eat organic at least drink green tea. FASEB J. 2011;25:1198

A Prospective Study of the Effect of Gastrointestinal Reflux Disease Treatment on Children with Otitis Media,” Processed foods directly and indirectly cause ear infections. J. Archives of Otoralyngology-Head and Neck Surgery 2011;137:35

Soy Food Consumption and Breast Cancer Prognosis.” How many times must I write that soy LOWERS the risk of breast cancer? J. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. Published Online First February 25, 2011; doi:10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-10-1041

Progesterone Prevents Sleep Disturbances and Modulates Growth hormone, Thyroid Stimulating Hormone, and Melatonin Secretion in Postmenopausal Women.” Progesterone is not just a sex hormone. Don’t take estrogen alone without progesterone, even when you had a hysterectomy. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2011 96: E614

Regulation of Tight Junction Permeability by Intestinal Bacteria and Dietary Components.” Probiotics improve “leaky gut.” J. Nutrition 2011;141:769

 

[1]State-Based Single-Payer Health Care? A solution for the USA? New England J. of Medicine 2011;364:1188

[2]The Triumph of New-Age Medicine,” The Atlantic, July 2011, p90

[3]Determining the Value of Drugs,” NEJM 2011;364:1289

[4]English NHS Embarks on Controversial and Risky Market-Style Reforms in health Care,” NEJM 2011;364:1360

Hugo Rodier, MD is an integrative physician based in Draper, Utah who specializes in healing chronic disease at the cellular level by blending proper nutrition, lifestyle changes, & allopathic practices when necessary.

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