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Tuesday, 28 July 2009 19:14 - Health Tips Newsletter November 2008

Posted Nov 17 2009 10:01pm 3 Comments
 
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November 2008
#021108
 
Monthly Health Tips Newsletter
 

Accessing Resources for Empowerment(tm)

 

 
This issue contains:

   Influenza vaccine-yes, no, or maybe?
 
   Are You Speaking Out or Holding It In?
 
   Coughs and Colds
 
   Exercise-induced Cell Damage
 
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 INFLUENZA VACCINE - YES, NO, OR MAYBE? Right about now you may be considering whether you or other members of your family ought to be getting the 'flu vaccine.  The advertisements are already flooding the print and visual media, and they present a foregone conclusion -- "get vaccinated now!"  However, the research data regarding whether the flu vaccine is effective is less than compelling.  Indeed, the literature search that I did for this article indicates that there are a number of studies both for and against vaccination.  To believe the advertisements is unwise because they are based on fear and incomplete evidence.  For example, they fail to point out that the deaths from influenza that they quote are almost totally related (75%) to those people who are chronically ill and over the age of 70.  Deaths from influenza rarely occur in healthy adults and children.

What is a person to do?  There are a number of points to consider when thinking about whether to get vaccinated against the flu or not.  Here they are:

  1. Realize that influenza is often confused with the common cold, sore throat or cough.  'Flu vaccines do not protect against the common cold or sore throat, and those who claim that they do are misinformed.
  2. There are many viruses that cause real influenza.  Each year scientists attempt to evaluate which viruses are likely to be causing influenza in the subsequent year.  About once in every 5 to 10 years they are totally wrong, and the vaccine has no impact at all on the incidence of influenza in the subsequent year. That means that if you have a shot that year then you have taken it in vain.
  3. Although several studies have been done in the last 10 to 15 years regarding the effectiveness of the 'flu vaccine the results of these studies are inconsistent because:
  1. If you are a health care worker, evidence suggests that there is no point in being vaccinated unless the patients that you are in contact with are vaccinated as well.
  2. Side effects (that we know about) are few, but there are some serious ones including a creeping paralysis known as Guillain-Barre Syndrome.  This occurs in about 1.6/100,000 people.  Its incidence may increase with the 'flu vaccine.   Supposedly reversible it can nevertheless leave you with chronic illness.  If only 1/4 vaccinations actually prevents the "real 'flu" then why risk this?
  3. 'Flu vaccines contain mercury, and are derived from egg.  Those allergic to eggs and those concerned about mercury for whatever reason should avoid the vaccine. 

There are still too many unanswered questions and not enough consistent results to recommend whether a flu shot is advisable.  One of the most prominent researchers and commentators in this area is Vittorio Demicheli who has made several comments about the provincially funded Ontario, Canada vaccination program initiated in 2000.  On the heels of the 2000 decision by the Ontario government to invest $38 million of taxpayer's money in a universal flu vaccine program, Demicheli writes in the Canadian Medical Association Journal in 2001:

"Given the quality of the information available... the Ontario decision... [could be considered] an experiment, a sort of pilot project.  Unfortunately, the level of uncertainty that still surrounds the problem of influenza prevention is so high that the consequences of this decision... will probably raise many new questions and leave the crucial ones unanswered." [2]

So where does that leave you, the reader, in terms of making a decision?  In my opinion, if you are a healthy person between the ages of birth and 70, stay away from the 'flu vaccine.  If you are over 70 and you have a chronic illness that might result in increased lung infections, then the flu vaccine may be considered helpful in preventing either the flu or possible pneumonia or other respiratory infection, although some would disagree even with this advice. [3] .   If you have fibromyalgia, autoimmune disease, multiple chemical sensitivity, or chronic fatigue syndrome then you should definitely stay away from the flu vaccine.  In these chronic conditions the immune system is sufficiently compromised that its stimulation by vaccine is unwise. 


[1] ACS-615 June 2005 An Advisory Committee Statement (ACS) National  Advisory Committee on Immunization Statement on Influenza Vaccination for the 2005-2006 Season Canada Communicable Disease Report Volume 31

[2] Demicheli V. Mass Influenza Vaccination in Ontario: Is it Worthwhile? Canadian Medical Association Journal Jan 9, 2001 164(1):38

[3] Lancet Infectious Diseases  Volume: 7(10) pp. 658-666  October 2007
 
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ARE YOU SPEAKING OUT OR HOLDING IT IN?

 

At one time or another we have probably all felt taken advantage of or hard done by.  It's an unpleasant feeling of dis-empowerment and helplessness.  Maybe something has happened, or someone has said something or done something to us that we feel powerless to change.  Sometimes it is true that we are unable to change a particular situation, because it requires that the other person change their behaviour in some way to satisfy or ameliorate our feelings and emotions.  However, when we require someone else to behave in a certain way in order to make us feel better, we immediately place ourselves in a one-down position.

 

A feeling of dis-empowerment can occur any time that we require external conditions to change in order to make us feel better.  For example, we buy something that doesn't satisfy our needs, or a product does not perform as expected.  This could be something we buy at the store or something that we purchase at a restaurant that doesn't taste good.  Or perhaps our boss is demeaning or a bully. Sometimes, if we don't speak out about these things, then we continue to feel cheated or hard done by.  So speaking out about what it is not right for us is important.  It helps to maintain our self-respect.

 

When we are at the effect of other people, it is because we believe that other people have the power to make us have certain emotions -usually negative ones.  This is impossible.  We choose how we feel.  How we perceive the world 'out there', and how we feel as a result, is our decision.  It is not usually a conscious decision, and often comes from unconscious old patterns of behaviour, limiting beliefs, and attitudes that we learned long-ago.

 

So take an opportunity to step towards self-empowerment by owning your emotions, and speak them out when you can.  If you think you cannot speak out your emotions in reality because you feel too scared or don't know how then do the exercise described in my blog - Are You at Cause or at Effect of the World Around You? Sometimes, even writing out your feelings and the perceived feelings of others can be helpful.  Look upon this initially unpleasant event as a learning experience, and ask yourself "how can I feel better under the circumstances and retain my self-respect?"  You can find a way to feel better.


Thanks for reading this month's newsletter. See you next month!


 
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Healthy Tips Short and Simple~News to Use
There are four basic principles to health:
 
1. Good nutrition
2. Good exercise
3. Good thinking and emotional states
4. Good self-care

These embrace the mind, body and spirit of good health and well-being. Each monthly tip(s) will address one or more or more of these principles.


These health tips are short and simple. There is much discussion today about different health issues, but there are some basic yet profound, helpful changes you can make.

It is these simple changes that I will bring you in these monthly 'hot tips news flashes'. All tips, where applicable, are based on quality research that is being done in the medical field.

You will see links throughout the newsletter to take you to more detail if you wish...or you can simply read what's here, and go from there. For the most part a paragraph or two will say it all.
 

 
Coughs & Colds
The winter season makes us all more susceptible to coughs and colds.  People often ask me what they can do to prevent coughs and colds during the winter -- here are some recommendations for you that I hope will help.
 
First, make sure you eat and exercise well - a good diet and exercise go a long way to ensuring a healthy immune system to prevent cough and cold viruses from both entering and multiplying in your body. Most of you probably know this already. Vitamin supplements are also helpful, and particularly Vitamin C in doses of 1-3 grams daily.
 
Echinacea tincture is also a good preventive in a dose of 15-20 drops per day -- three weeks on and one week off.
For those with susceptibility to recurrent sore throats and head colds specifically, a good preventive is the homeopathic remedy Thymuline 9CH (Dolisos) taken once a week for a month and then once a month throughout the cold season from October to April.
 
Another good preventive is Cold-FX by HerbTech  from Alberta. Take one capsule daily through the winter season, or as directed on the package insert for acute onset of symptoms.
 
In the event that symptoms of chills, fever, sore throat, etc. occur, we recommend Dolicoccil 30 CH taking 1 complete tube 2 times daily for 2 days, and then 1 tube once daily for 2 days. You can also double up on the Cold-Fx if you are already taking those.
 
None of these products has any side effects. Sorry but none of them comes with a guarantee either!

Have Bright Idea for a Health Topic?

I'd like to hear about it! Just reply any time and let me know what topics you'd like to know more about.
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EXERCISE INDUCED DAMAGE

Few people realize that exercise can induce damage - after all, exercise is supposed to be good for you.  The fact is that too much of a good thing, can be just as damaging as too much of a bad thing. Interestingly, even in an elite athlete, the ability to use oxygen during maximal exercise by muscles far exceeds the capacity of the body to deliver it.  So even these well-trained people are in an oxygen debt, and it's good to know they suffer too!

What happens to our bodies when we go beyond our sensible exercise tolerance levels is well documented.  Researchers have even given it a label - Exercise Induced Pathology or EIP. Any kind of exercise, but particularly intense exercise, will induce a number of negative effects - inflammation, muscle fibre breakdown, acidosis, and what is called oxidative stress.  Oxidative stress is a universal phenomenon.  It consists of the manufacture of something called free radicals.  These are produced directly as a result of increased energy production in the energy producing factories of the cell called mitochondria.  Free radicals are highly energized, and they damage tissue.  The body has a way of dealing with free radicals -- it quenches them using antioxidants.  You have heard of antioxidants -- they are vitamins like vitamin C, E, carotenes, selenium, glutathione, and Co-Enzyme Q10 etc. Antioxidants literally 'mop up' the free radicals generated by exercise.  Free radicals create inflammation, DNA damage, and host of other unpleasant end products.  The result is aching muscles, headache, fatigue and exhaustion.
 
All research suggests that moderated, carefully crafted exercise in proper balance with your prior experience of exercise is important.  Listen to your body -- it will let you know when you've done too much too fast!  At the beginning of any exercise program you will feel some discomfort.  As you gradually increase your exercise program that discomfort will disappear, because the body accommodates to the increase with positive results.  You always want to push yourself a little bit, but not too much.  Will antioxidants help?  Yes.  If you are in an exercise program that involves aerobic conditioning or resistance training, then in my opinion you require antioxidant supplementation to minimize muscular, DNA, and mitochondrial damage.  For very intense exercise, there are products available that combine antioxidants with certain proteins that can be taken before, during and after exercise to minimize damage.  Extra protein is especially important for the elderly person who may be more prone to muscle loss because of their age.

Four hundred units of vitamin E (mixed tocopherols are best), 1000 mg vitamin C, 100 µg of selenium, and 15 mg of mixed carotenoids are a good start.  In addition, eat lots of fruits and vegetables that have lots of colour in them -- dark green, orange, red, and yellow vegetables all have an abundance of antioxidants.

 

 
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Comments (3)
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Take , take proper rest, and regular exercise you will fit and fine on long time...............
this is good for health....for more health tips..go to

At one time or another we have probably all felt taken advantage of or hard done by.  It's an unpleasant feeling of dis-empowerment and helplessness.



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