Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Obesity is now a disease!

It is now official, Obesity is a disease according to the AMA. That is this week, last week it was caffeine withdrawal is now a mental disorder. So, what is next?

Seriously, the AMA has now classified obesity as a disease. That opens the doors for 78 million adults and 12 million children to be covered by insurance plans. The bad thing is, the AMA, and medicine in general, has a very poor record for treating obesity. Sure, we have surgical weight loss procedures, but even they don't have great success. I can't count he number of people that I have dealt with that lost weight and then gained it back after their surgery.

Can you imagine what this is going to do to the already overloaded medical system? And, what is the insurance industry going to do with an additional 90 million folks that they have to cover? I would bet that all our premiums are headed North.

As some of you may know we have been involved in a 40 plus year experiment with the low fat, high carb diet. And now a full one third of the population in America is obese. Maybe it is just me, but after 40 plus years, can't we recognize failure when we see it? At this point I always bring up the meaning of insanity; keep doing the same thing over and over and expect a different outcome. And that is exactly what we have done for the past 40 years.

There is some very convincing evidence that with some serious dietary changes we can reverse this trend. At the same time we can also get rid of the many gastrointestinal disorders plaguing America.

No, it is much easier to just 'reclassify' this problem to a disease state rather than what it really is, making bad dietary choices.

If you think caffeine withdrawal is bad, just wait until you try getting away from sugar! You just might be mental after that. :-)

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Vegetarian diet tied to fewer deaths over time...

A new study just published in JAMA Internal Medicine ( ) shows that people who limit how much meat they eat and stick mainly to mostly fruits and vegetables are less likely to die over a period of time.

Another study from Europe found that British vegetarians were just as likely to die at any point as the meat eaters. Hmmmmm, is there more to this than meats the eye, (pun intended)? More questions than answers perhaps? We will get to that a little later.

The recent study used data from 73,308 people recruited at U.S. and Canadian Sevent-day Advventist churches between 2002 and 2007.

The participants were asked about their dietary choices and eating habits then seperated into categories. 8% were vegans, no animal products, 29% were lacto-ovo-vegetarians who don't eat fish or other meats but do eat dairy and egg products. The rest of the participants were meat eaters.

The researchers found seven people died of any cause per 1,000 in the meat eating group over a year compared to approximately five to six deaths per year for vegetarians in the same time period. Not a huge difference, but a difference non the less.

It seemed that men benefited the most from the plant based diet. Again, Hmmmmm.

Now we have to ask : Is it the meat or things in the meats that is causing the problem? By things in the meat I mean hormones used in production of livestock here in America or ingredients such as preservatives? Good question, but not one answered in this study. Obviously more studies needed.

No doubt that anyone that eats more vegetables and fruits is better off than one that eats packaged, processed foods, including processed meats. Could it be the added fiber in the veggies and fruits? There have been other studies that show that the added fiber helps with blood sugar regulation and gut health. And we must remember that the gut holds somewhere between 70% to 80 % of the immune system, and since we are looking at total deaths, there may be another connecting link not included in this study.

Also, what was the overall health status and family history of the participants? All this would have to be taken into consideration to fully evaluate the effectiveness of the diet.

Hopefully, in the future, this will be more rigorously investigated. In the mean time, eat more vegetables and fruits, and if you are going to eat meats, make sure the meats are hormone free or organic. For fish, make sure they are 'wild caught' so as to avoid the contaminants of factory farming of fish that is highly suspect as to safety.The lack of hormones and increased fiber will do you good.

Monday, June 3, 2013

FrankenWheat is here......

GMO wheat, or as I call it "FrankenWheat", is here, or I should say in the fields of America. Perhaps you have heard of this discovery, perhaps not. It has not made the mainstream media, and I doubt that it will. Hopefully I will be proven wrong in this case.

It seems that our old friends Monsanto have been experimenting with wheat since 1998. Now, this still unapproved, wheat has made its escape and has been found in the wheat fields of Oregon. Where else is it going to be found, hard to tell since it was planted in experimental crop areas of 15 or more states. What damage can it do? Again, hard to tell since it has never been studied. Maybe that is why the rest of the world is freaking out and banning shipments of U.S. grown wheat. The latest is South Korea which joined with Japan and is stopping imports of our wheat

Even our FDA, here is the 'official' response:

"WASHINGTON, May 29, 2013 –The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) announced today that test results of plant samples from an Oregon farm indicate the presence of genetically engineered (GE) glyphosate-resistant wheat plants. Further testing by USDA laboratories indicates the presence of the same GE glyphosate-resistant wheat variety that Monsanto was authorized to field test in 16 states from 1998 to 2005. APHIS launched a formal investigation after being notified by an Oregon State University scientist that initial tests of wheat samples from an Oregon farm indicated the possible presence of GE glyphosate-resistant wheat plants. There are no GE wheat varieties approved for sale or in commercial production in the United States or elsewhere at this time."

From my standpoint it looks like Jeannie is out of the bottle. Question is, what will it do to us? One thing we know for sure it involves and unknown, and unknowns can present with some very unusual and complicated problems. And don't expect your PC (Primary Care) physician to look very hard. Your insurance company has him or her hamstrung.

For these other countries to decline shipments of our wheat does not bode well. Besides the possible health issues that might come of this, the financial hit for our farmers has to be hard. and that is going to hurt us all here in the USA. 

What about the health issues? Good question. We now know that Monsanto has been experimenting with this unapproved crop since 1998 there is no telling how much it has invaded our wheat crops. One thing we do know is that G.I. problems have been on the rise in the recent past. How many people do you know that is not taking some med for G.I. problems? The actual number is astounding. In our practice we see in the neighborhood of 7 out of 10 that have G.I. complaints. These complaints may be secondary to other concerns, but they are plentiful.

One of the most common complaints we see is those thinking they are celiac, which is due to gluten handling problems. After testing we find that there are many who are actually celiac, but there are many more that are gluten sensitive. Being sensitive to gluten can be a very problematic with gas, bloating, indigestion, etc. All the more reason to avoid wheat and other grains at all costs, and yes corn is a grain, not a vegetable.

Many times simple dietary changes, like avoiding grains, can alleviate many of the G.I. issues. With this 'FrankenWheat' on the loose there is no way of knowing just how far the ramifications will go. This is the problem with GMO's in that we really don't know what damage they can do.  As far back as 2010 there was implications that gluten sensitivity and celiac were linked to psychosis and possibly even schizophrenia . No wonder these other countries don't want our wheat. We shouldn't eat it as well.

If you follow the links provided and perhaps Google it for further reading, I am sure you will just as concerned as I am.  In the mean time, stop all grains. You will be better for it in the long run!