Health and Wellness Associates
Obesity Might Skew Blood Tests in Kids
If your child is obese, new research suggests that those extra pounds can alter the results of routine blood tests.
“We performed the first comprehensive analysis of the effect of obesity on routine blood tests in a large community population of children and found that almost 70% of the blood tests studied were affected,” said study first author Victoria Higgins, from the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto and the University of Toronto.
Higgins’ team looked at more than 1,300 healthy children and teens in and around Toronto and found that obesity affected 24 routine blood tests, including those for liver function, inflammation markers, lipids and iron.
The study was published Dec. 17 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
“As clinical decisions are often guided by normative ranges based on a large healthy population, understanding how and which routine blood tests are affected by obesity is important to correctly interpret blood test results,” Higgins explained in a journal news release.
It’s unclear if obesity’s impact on blood tests are a sign of early disease, but doctors should be aware of these findings when interpreting several types of blood tests in children, the researchers advised.
“We hope our study results will assist pediatricians and family physicians to better assess children and adolescents with different degrees of overweight or obesity,” Higgins said.
There’s been a sharp rise in overweight and obesity among U.S. youngsters in the past three decades, and the childhood obesity rate is now about 18.5%.
— Robert Preidt
Health and Wellness Associates
Health and WEllness Associates
Sunscreen Lotions are Killing You and Your Family
Compelling evidence: Slathering on toxic sunscreen and avoiding the sun could jeopardize your health and shorten your life
According to a June 2014 article featured in The Independent (UK), a major study conducted by researchers at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden found that women who avoid sunbathing during the summer are twice as likely to die as those who sunbathe every day.
The epidemiological study followed 30,000 women for over 20 years and “showed that mortality was about double in women who avoided sun exposure compared to the highest exposure group.”
Researchers concluded that the conventional dogma, which advises avoiding the sun at all costs and slathering on sunscreen to minimize sun exposure, is doing more harm than actual good.
That’s because overall sun avoidance combined with wearing sunscreen effectively blocks the body’s ability to produce vitamin D3 from the sun’s UVB rays, which is by far the best form of vitamin D.
In the USA, vitamin D deficiency is at epidemic levels. Ironically, vitamin D deficiency can lead to aggressive forms of skin cancer. A ground-breaking 2011 study published in Cancer Prevention Research suggests that optimal blood levels of vitamin D offers protection against sunburn and skin cancer.
Additionally, vitamin D protects the body from diseases like multiple sclerosis, rickets (in the young), tuberculosis, inflammatory bowel disease, type 1 diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus and Sjogren’s syndrome.
According to the Vitamin D Council, researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham recently reported that “lack of sun exposure may lead to cognitive decline over time.”
Please call us for using Vitamin D correctly for YOU. Everyone of us is different than everyone else, and you need a personal healthcare approach to your healthcare,
A dissident dermatologist
Bernard Ackerman, MD, (deceased 2008) was one of the world’s foremost authorities on the subject of skin cancer and the sun, sunscreens and melanoma skin cancer risks.
Below are Ackerman’s views excerpted from an article in The New York Times (July 20, 2004), titled “I BEG TO DIFFER; A Dermatologist Who’s Not Afraid to Sit on the Beach”:
The link between melanoma and sun exposure (dermatology’s dogma) is unproven.There’s no conclusive evidence that sunburns lead to cancer.There is no real proof that sunscreens protect against melanoma.There’s no proof that increased exposure to the sun increases the risk of melanoma.
A 2000 Swedish study concluded that higher rates of melanoma occurred in those who used sunscreen versus those who did not.
Sunscreens: Cancer-Causing Biohazards
Elizabeth Plourde, PhD, is a California-based scientist who authored the book Sunscreens – Biohazard: Treat as Hazardous Waste, which extensively documents the serious life-threatening dangers of sunscreens not only to people but to the environment as well.
Dr. Plourde provides proof that malignant melanoma and all other skin cancers increased significantly with ubiquitous sunscreen use over a 30-year period. She emphasizes that many sunscreens contain chemicals that are known carcinogens and endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDC).
Environmentally, she notes: “In areas where there has been much exposure to ED [endocrine disrupting] chemicals, coral and other sea populations have died off and the prevalence of dual-sexed fish has risen.”
Dr. Plourde’s research on mice and sunscreen exposure also showed increases in both pup and maternal mortality as well as reproductive issues in subsequent generations. Meaning that the chemicals in sunscreens are damaging your DNA, and you are passing down this DNA break to your children. Many children who use sunscreen are developing life threatening diseases, and life long medical problems by the age of 30.
Additionally, the book documents how sunscreen chemicals have polluted our water sources including oceans, rivers and municipal drinking water. Worse yet, testing revealed that 97% of Americans have sunscreen chemicals in their blood!
Please share with family and loved ones. If you have concerns about your personal healthcare, please call us.
Health and Wellness Associates
Health and Wellness Associates
Lack of Sleep and Diabetes Linked
New research links lack of sleep with heightened risk for type 2 diabetes in youth
A new review of scientific literature on the importance of sleep in youth suggests that a lack of sleep can lead to decreased appetite control and body weight regulation, all of which can raise risks for the development of type 2 diabetes.
The largest decline in sleep duration and poor sleep quality over the past decades has been seen in children and adolescents, a trend that earlier studies say may contribute to weight gain, increased risks for cardiovascular disease and poor mental health.
This new review of evidence, published in the journal Nutrition and Diabetes, has looked at 23 studies on the topic of risk factors for type 2 diabetes and sleep variables to try and elucidate the mechanisms that may explain the association between the two.
Researchers from Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute, in Canada, reviewed studies that not only assessed risks from inadequate sleep, described as sleeping less than six hours per night – a two-hour or so sleep deficit compared to standard advice for children – but also sleep architecture.
A healthy sleep architecture refers to having the right number of restorative sleep cycles and rapid eye movement phases to feel sufficiently well-rested. An out of whack sleep architecture has been associated in past studies with insulin resistance.
In terms of sleep duration, researchers have found that the lowest risk for type 2 diabetes is observed, similar to the figure given for adults, at a minimum sleep duration of seven to eight hours per day.
Drawing from the findings of the different studies evaluated, they have identified a number of mechanisms by which the lack of sleep can elevate risks for type 2 diabetes among children.
One of them, perhaps the most prominent one, is the increased exposure to the stress hormone cortisol due to short sleep duration. This may contribute to the accumulation of visceral fat and subsequent increased insulin resistance.
The reason for this is that the authors also noted that the association between sleep quality and insulin resistance was not independent of the level of adiposity – the increase in the number of fat cells.
There may also be another phenomenon implicated that has to do with the nervous system which, in response to the stress of not sleeping, negatively influences the hormone leptin.
While we sleep, leptin usually rise to control appetite. However, when sleep is restricted, leptin gets inhibited. The inhibition of leptin leads to an increase in hunger and a decrease in satiety. These effects can translate into progressive weight gain.
Sleep is a modifiable lifestyle habit associated with the prevention of type 2 diabetes. One randomised trial that was part of the review conducted among children aged 8 to 11 years showed that increasing sleep duration by just 1.5 hour per night over a week resulted in lower food intake and lower body weight.
Although more studies are needed to shed light on the mechanisms linking insufficient sleep with type 2 diabetes risk, there’s no possible risk in children and teens improving their sleep and getting enough of it on a regular schedule each night.
If you need help, have concerns or just want a healthcare plan for YOU, then contact us and we will help you.
Health and Wellness Associates
Dr. Mark Williams DPsych
Consumer health watchdog As You Sow released results today showing that 35 of 50 chocolate products tested, including chocolate bunnies and eggs, expose consumers to lead and cadmium above levels set by California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act.
Testing commissioned by As You Sow, and conducted at independent laboratories, indicates that the chocolate products contain lead and/or cadmium, and they fail to provide the legally required warning to consumers.
As You Sow has filed legal notices against chocolate manufacturers, including Trader Joe’s, Hershey’s, Green and Black’s, Lindt, Whole Foods, Kroger, Godiva, See’s Candies, Mars, Theo Chocolate, Equal Exchange, Ghirardelli, Earth Circle Organics, and more, for failure to warn of lead and/or cadmium in their chocolate products.
“Lead exposure is associated with neurological impairment, such as learning disabilities and decreased IQ, even at very low levels. In fact, there is no safe level of lead for children,” said Eleanne van Vliet, MPH, As You Sow’s Environmental Health Consultant.
“As underscored by the Flint disaster, humans have contaminated our environment with lead, and now we must do everything in our power to protect ourselves and children, who are the most vulnerable of us, from every possible exposure,” said Sean Palfrey, MD, a pediatrician and Professor of Pediatrics and Public Health at Boston University School of Medicine. “Young children and pregnant women especially should avoid exposure to lead.”
“Lead and cadmium accumulate in the body, so avoiding exposure is important, especially for children,” explained Danielle Fugere, As You Sow President. “Our goal is to work with chocolate manufacturers to find ways to avoid these metals in their products.”
Scientists have linked chronic cadmium exposure to kidney, liver, and bone damage in humans. Children are more susceptible to especially susceptible to even from low doses over time. Animal studies associate cadmium exposure with decreased birth weight, neurobehavioral problems, and male reproductive harm.
Recent revelations of lead contamination in water in Flint, Michigan raised awareness that lead is irrefutably linked to neurological impacts in children.
Since 1992, As You Sow has led enforcement actions resulting in removal of lead from children’s jewelry and formaldehyde from portable classrooms.
The brands involved are:
Bissinger’s All Natural 60% Dark Chocolate Whole Almonds Lead
Earth Circle Foods dba River Canyon Retreat Inc.
Earth Circle Organics Organic Balinese Cacao Nibs Cold Pressed Cadmium
Ghirardelli Chocolate Company
Ghiradelli Intense Dark 72% Cacao Twilight Delight Chocolate Bar Cadmium
Ghiradelli Chocolate Premium Baking Bar 100% Cacao Unsweetened Chocolate Lead & Cadmium
Godiva Chocolatier 50% Cacao Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Lead
Godiva Chocolatier 85% Cacao Extra Dark Chocolate Lead & Cadmium
Godiva Chocolatier 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate Lead & Cadmium
The Hershey Company
Scharffen Berger Semisweet Fine Artisan Dark Chocolate (62% cacao) Cadmium
Scharffen Berger Extra Dark Fine Artisan Dark Chocolate (82% cacao) Cadmium
Organic New Moon Rich Dark Chocolate (74% cacao) Lead & Cadmium
Lake Champlain Chocolates
Lake Champlain Chocolates Dark Chocolate (57% cocoa) Lead & Cadmium
Lindt & Sprüngli (USA) Inc.
Lindt Excellence 85% Cocoa Excellence Extra Dark Lead & Cadmium
Dove Silky Smooth Dark Chocolate Bar Cadmium
Mondelez International, Inc.
Green & Black’s Organic 85% Cacao Bar Lead & Cadmium
Moonstruck Chocolate Co.
Moonstruck Dark Chocolate Chile Variado (68% cacao) Lead
See’s Candies, Inc.
See’s Candies Premium Extra Dark Chocolate (62% cacao) Cadmium
The Kroger Co.
Private Selection 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate Swiss Bar Lead & Cadmium
Theo Chocolate Theo
Organic Fair Trade Pure 85% Dark Chocolate Cadmium
Trader Joe’s Company
Trader Joe’s Swiss 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate Lead
Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Bar – Toffee With Walnuts and Pecans 70% cacao Lead
Trader Joe’s Pound Plus Dark Chocolate Lead
Trader Joe’s Pound Plus, 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate Lead
Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate 73% Cacao Super Dark Lead & Cadmium
Trader Joe’s The Dark Chocolate Lover’s Chocolate Bar (85% cacao) Lead & Cadmium
Vosges, Ltd. Wild
Ophelia All Natural New Orleans Chili – Dark Chocolate Bar (70% cacao) Lead
Whole Foods Market, Inc.
365 Everyday Value Organic Dark Chocolate (56% Cacao) Lead & Cadmium
If you have any questions or concerns please contact us for help.
Health and Wellness Associates
Dr Anna Killarney
What is Wrong With America’s Children
In America, our children are getting sicker and sicker. Here are the facts about children living in the United States.
1 in 3 children are overweight
1 in 5 children are obese
1 in 6 children have a learning disability
1 in 11 children have asthma
1 in 68 children have autism
1 in 423 boys have autism
1 in 10 children have ADHD
1 in 20 children have food allergies
1 in 2 children have a chronic illness
This should alarm everyone. Every one of these problems concerns intake of chemicals that the body can not utilize or diffuse.
Please give us a call to help eliminate chemical intake from you and your families diet. These problerms start when you are pregnant, and they are not filtered out if you breastfeed.
Health and Wellness Associates
Miralax is advertised as natural. It’s described as a tool to pull water into your colon so your gut can eliminate naturally. But there’s nothing natural about Miralax, as its active ingredient polyethylene glycol is a petroleum derivative. In essence, it’s plastic.
What’s more, Miralax is not approved for use in children. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has only approved it for adult usage and even then only for seven days at a time. If your pediatrician or doctor has recommended Miralax for your child you better ask why? Even the slow moving FDA has said NO to children in 2008.
No one knows what for sure what happens when children take PEG laxatives chronically, but a growing number of adverse events are being reported, including concerning neurological disturbances, kidney problems and more. With scrutiny increasing, and a new study into their side effects underway, it’s time to think twice before turning to laxatives for constipation.
Laxatives with the active ingredient polyethylene glycol 3350 (PEG 3350), the most popular of which is Miralax, are commonly given to children with constipation. Some of these children end up using the drug daily for years, which their parents (and likely their doctors as well) probably assume is safe.
FDA Study Detected Antifreeze Chemicals in Laxatives
In 2008, the FDA tested eight batches of Miralax because “many of the reported adverse events were classic symptoms of ethylene glycol ingestion.”4 Ethylene glycol (EG) and diethylene glycol (DEG) are ingredients in antifreeze so, in other words, the government tested the laxative after receiving reports of children exhibiting symptoms of antifreeze poisoning following their use.
The study “confirmed the presence of small amounts of ethylene glycol and diethylene glycol in all lots tested,”5 with the FDA describing them as impurities resulting from the manufacturing process. Those results were not released and only came to light after being “buried in the agency’s brief to researchers, issued last year .”6 Yet, in 2009 the FDA’s drug safety oversight board raised several concerns about the use of these laxatives in children.7
They noted that children may be more susceptible to variations in PEG product quality and effects of large doses of PEG given for weeks or longer is not known. They also stated that “it is unknown if prolonged duration in solution would change the chemical properties of PEG-3350,” or, in other words, what might happen when the substances are ingested and/or metabolized.
In addition to finding EG and DEG in the products, PEG may be breaking down into EG and DEG in your body (polyethylene glycol is a chain of EG molecules).
So ask yourself again, why is someone recommending this for my children?
Thousands of Neurological Adverse Events Reported
There have been more than 7,000 reports related to PEG laxatives filed in the FDA’s Adverse Event Reporting System (FAERS), according to Carol Chittenden, co-director of the Empire State Consumer Project, an advocacy group. This is likely an underestimate of the true problem, as for every adverse event that’s reported, there may be 100 more that are not reported.
Following thousands of complaints from parents, many of them in discussion groups online, the Empire State Consumer Project petitioned the FDA to investigate the safety of PEG 3350 in 2012. Part of the petition called for the FDA to add a boxed warning about children on PEG 3350 laxatives, which the FDA has not acted on.
However, in September 2014 the FDA awarded a nearly $325,000 grant The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to study whether PEG 3350 is absorbed by the very young and whether it contributes to the development of psychiatric problems. Among the adverse events reported, many of them are neurological in nature. According to the FDA:8
“Neuropsychiatric adverse events [in children using PEG products] may include seizures, tremors, tics, headache, anxiety, lethargy, sedation, aggression, rages, obsessive-compulsive behaviors including repetitive chewing and sucking, paranoia, and mood swings.”
There were also reports of metabolic acidosis, which is a disturbance in the body’s acid-base balance, leading to too much acid in your blood. While some cases of metabolic acidosis are mild others can lead to shock or even death. Poisoning resulting from ethylene glycol from antifreeze produces many of these same symptoms, including metabolic acidosis and neurologic effects.
If you or your child has experienced any adverse events while taking a PEG 3350 laxatives like Miralax, please report them – both to your physician and directly to the FDA’s Adverse Event Reporting System.
So why is someone prescribing Miralax for my child with an outrageously high number of seizures and tremors, aggression and other neurological problems.
PEG Laxatives Are Also Prescribed for Colon Prep Prior to Colonoscopy
Even if you’re not constipated, you may have taken PEG 3350 if you’ve had a colonoscopy screening. The laxative is commonly included as part of the preparation. Any PEG 3550 effects will, in this case, be limited to just one exposure, albeit a large one, unlike in the children that take this laxative chronically.
However, if you’re planning to schedule a colonoscopy and want a truly safe, non-toxic alternative, talk with your physician about using magnesium citrate only. The only side effect of magnesium citrate is loose stools, which is why it’s a non-toxic alternative for colonoscopy prep.
In addition, some practitioners are having a lot of success using colon hydrotherapy as a prep just prior to the colonoscopy. Unfortunately, at this time this is not widely available. Remember that your only option for colon prep is not to simply take the potentially toxic PEG 3550 laxatives.
If your physician is not willing to offer you an alternative, then seek out a physician who will.
Health and Wellness Associates
Many of us have had these and we need to keep eating them. They are filled with many many of the nutrients that we have lost with “quick” foods. For the men in your family, use canned whole tomatoes in your sauce, that is what is best for them. You also might want to skip the honey, especially if you have children.
Savory Stuffed Cabbage Rolls
Adapted from The Green Thumb Cookbook, page 63
1 medium head cabbage
1 pound ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
3 T uncooked brown rice
2 T chopped fresh parsley (2 t dried)
2 t salt
1/2 t pepper
1 3/4 cups plain tomato sauce
1 cup canned tomato chunks
2 T honey
1/2 cup grated Colby cheese, optional
Put the head of cabbage in a pot. Cover with water. Remove the cabbage and bring the water to a boil. Turn off the heat. Submerge the whole head of cabbage in the boiling water and cover. Let sit for 15-20 minutes.
Meanwhile, brown the beef and onion. Turn off the heat. Add the rice, parsley, salt, pepper, and egg.
When the cabbage is done “cooking”, remove it from the water onto a cookie sheet with sides (to catch any remaining water). Very carefully, remove 12 leaves. Cut the thickest part of center rib out of each leaf, about 1 or 2 inches. There will be a little V in the middle of each leave. Divide the meat filling between the leaves and roll up jelly roll fashion, but tucking in the ends so the filling stays put. Place the rolls in a deep casserole dish.
Pour the tomato sauce, tomato chunks, and honey over the rolls. Cover and bake at 350 for about an hour and a half. Remove the lid, sprinkle with cheese, and bake another 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Let set a few minutes before serving.
Serves: 4 – 6
Top Five Warning Signs that Your Child is in Trouble
What causes teenagers to make choices that could destroy their future, and why do they give in to peer pressure? Could your child be headed down a dangerous path? Heed the following warning signs:
#1 Teen warning sign: Isolates from the family. If your once social child starts spending an inordinate amount of time away from home or locked in his or her room, Dr. Phil says this is a red flag. If your teen starts withdrawing from you or your spouse, there’s a reason. As a parent, it’s your responsibility to identify what’s behind the change.
#2 Teen warning sign: An extreme shift in mood. Is your child garrulous and friendly one moment, then taciturn and angry the next? Don’t just chalk it up to growing pains. Dr. Phil says he or she may be hanging out with the wrong crowd, or experiencing changes — hormonally, neurologically or socially.
“One thing to do is not to let it just go,” Dr. Phil warns, “because they get bigger, they get stronger, they get more rebellious. It’s never too late.”
#3 Teen warning sign: He or she starts abusing drugs or alcohol.
Teens often start experimenting with drugs and/or alcohol unbeknownst to their folks. If you suspect your child is using drugs, know the signs to look for.
#4 Teen warning sign: Family history of alcoholism and drug abuse.
“There clearly is a higher incidence with teens if they’ve had this history in their family,” Dr. Phil says. “Maybe it’s genetic; maybe it’s not. Maybe it’s just that the modeling is there.”
#5 Teen warning sign: Taking risks.
Don’t chalk your child’s truancy, vandalism or petty theft up to “teens being teens.”
“When your teen just seems to throw caution to the wind, not care about consequences — all around bad sign,” Dr. Phil warns. “It indicates a number of things, one of which is that they don’t have the ability to connect their choices with their consequences.”
Other warning signs to look out for:
Declining grades, using street or drug language, a diminished interest in hobbies and a lack of appreciation for family values.
“You can’t be in denial about what’s going on. Don’t kid yourself that these bad things just happen to other people’s kids. Know what’s going on with your child. Make sure they understand the consequences of their actions,” Dr. Phil says. “Make sure they’re living consistent with the values you hold so important.”
Health and Wellness Associates
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