Rx to Wellness, Uncategorized

Opioid’s Surpass Cigarette Smoking

opiod

 

Opioid Addiction Now Surpasses Smoking

 

It’s time to face the facts. America has a very serious drug addiction problem, and it stems from overprescription of painkillers. According to a recent report by the U.S. surgeon general, more Americans now use prescription opioids than smoke cigarettes.1

 

Substance abuse in general has also eclipsed cancer in terms of prevalence. Addiction to opioids and heroin is costing the U.S. more than $193 billion each year. Alcohol abuse is costing another $249 billion. In total, the cost of substance abuse far exceeds the cost of diabetes, which is also at a record high.

 

Opiates such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, fentanyl and morphine are also killing more Americans than car crashes.2 In 2014, more than 49,700 Americans died from opioid or heroin overdoses while 32,675 died in car accidents. According to the surgeon general’s report, in 2015:

 

27 million Americans took opioids

More than 66 million (nearly 25 percent of the total adolescent and adult population) reported binge drinking at some point in the previous month

 

In 1964, the U.S. surgeon general’s report on the health effects of smoking helped reshape the general attitude toward tobacco use. Surgeon general, Dr. Vivek Murthy, hopes his call to action on drug addiction and substance abuse will have a similar impact. As noted in a recent NPR interview with Murthy:3

 

“We now know from solid data that substance abuse disorders don’t discriminate. They affect the rich and the poor, all socioeconomic groups and ethnic groups. They affect people in urban areas and rural ones. Far more people than we realize are affected …

 

For far too long people have thought about substance abuse disorders as a disease of choice, a character flaw or a moral failing. We underestimated how exposure to addictive substances can lead to full blown addiction.

 

Opioids are a good example. Now we understand that these disorders actually change the circuitry in your brain … That tells us that addiction is a chronic disease of the brain, and we need to treat it with the same urgency and compassion that we do with any other illness.”

 

According to the report, every dollar invested in treatment saves $4 in healthcare costs and lost productivity, and another $7 in reduced criminal justice costs. Murthy’s plan to address the addiction epidemic involves policy makers, regulators, scientists, families, schools and local communities.

 

This amounts to another American bailout, this time taxpayers will be footing the bill for a pharmaceutical induced epidemic – paying the same medical system that caused the problem for the antidote.

 

A Brief History on Heroin

 

Heroin was initially introduced by Bayer Co. in 1898. It was hailed as a “wonder drug,” commonly used to treat pain and cough. Addiction rates grew once it was discovered that its effects were amplified when injected. As reported by CNN in an article covering the history of opioids:4

 

“In 1914, the Harrison Narcotics Tax Act imposed a tax on those making, importing or selling any derivative of opium or coca leaves. By the 1920s, doctors were aware of the highly addictive nature of opioids and tried to avoid treating patients with them.

 

Heroin became illegal in 1924 … By the mid- and late-1970s, when Percocet and Vicodin came on the market, doctors had long been taught to avoid prescribing highly addictive opioids to patients.

 

But an 11-line letter printed in the New England Journal of Medicine [NEJM] in January 1980 pushed back on the popular thought that using opioids to treat chronic pain was risky.

 

In it, Jane Porter and Dr. Hershel Jick mentioned their analysis of 11,882 patients who were treated with narcotics. They wrote that ‘the development of addiction is rare in medical patients with no history of addiction.'”

 

Prescription opioids had been increasingly prescribed to patients with terminal illnesses, but prescription patterns took a radical turn in the mid-1990s, when opioids became the focus of a campaign aimed at increasing prescriptions to non-terminal patients with pain.

 

The Birth of OxyContin

 

Purdue Pharma started selling OxyContin in 1996. Two years later, the company produced a promotion video that was distributed to 15,000 doctor’s offices across the U.S. In the video, a doctor is featured saying:

 

“The rate of addiction among pain patients who are treated by doctors is less than 1 percent. They don’t wear out; they go on working; they do not have serious medical side effects. So, these drugs, which I repeat, are our best, strongest pain medications, should be used much more than they are for patients in pain.”

 

Doctors apparently took notice, because a year later, opioid prescriptions had skyrocketed by an astounding 11 million. As noted in the video above, for many years, medical students were taught that if a patient is in serious pain, opioid painkillers will not have an addictive effect.

 

Not only does this defy logic, but this notion has also been scientifically proven FALSE. These drugs are addictive whether you’re in pain or not, and the claim that less than 1 percent of pain patients develop an addiction to them was based on misinterpretation of Jick’s limited data.

 

As one doctor admits, the campaign was aimed at destigmatizing the use of opioids, and in so doing, they often “left evidence behind.” Pain has such an adverse impact on quality of life, doctors owed it to their patients to be more aggressive in the treatment of pain, the rationale went. As a result of this biased “education campaign,” prescriptions for narcotic pain relievers rose by 600 percent in one decade, laying the groundwork for today’s drug addiction epidemic.

 

Many Drug Addicts Got Their Start After a Minor Injury

 

As described in the BBC News video at the top of this article, many of today’s addicts became hooked after receiving a prescription for an opioid following a relatively minor injury. Their injury healed, but the subsequent addiction is now ruining their lives, and the lives of their families.

 

Many, including young people, have also died as a result. As noted by Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): “We know of no other medication routinely used for a nonfatal condition that kills patients so frequently.”5 According to Frieden, studies show that addiction affects about 26 percent of those using opioids for chronic non-cancer pain. Worse, 1 in 550 patients on opioid therapy die from opioid-related causes within 2.5 years of their first prescription!

 

In addition to that, most studies investigating long-term use of opioids have lasted a mere six weeks or less, and those that lasted longer have, by and large, found “consistently poor results.” Several of them found that opioid use worsened pain over time and led to decreased functioning — an effect thought to be related to increased pain perception.

 

How Revolving Door Policy Allowed Drug Addiction to Spiral Out of Control

 

I’ve written about the dangers of the revolving door policy that allows regulators to be hired by industry and vice versa on numerous occasions. In this case, former Drug ­Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Department of Justice (DOJ) officials hired by the drug industry fought for lenience and a “soft approach” to the burgeoning drug addiction problem.

 

They succeeded, thereby allowing the problem to grow more or less unrestrained, despite official promises to the contrary. As revealed in a Washington Post exposé:6

 

“A decade ago, the [DEA] launched an aggressive campaign to curb a rising opioid epidemic … The DEA began to target wholesale companies that distributed hundreds of millions of highly addictive pills to the corrupt pharmacies and pill mills that illegally sold the drugs for street use.

 

Leading the campaign was the agency’s Office of Diversion Control, whose investigators around the country began filing civil cases against the distributors, issuing orders to immediately suspend the flow of drugs and generating large fines.

 

But the industry fought back. Former DEA and Justice Department officials hired by drug companies began pressing for a softer approach. In early 2012, the deputy attorney general summoned the DEA’s diversion chief to an unusual meeting over a case against two major drug companies. ‘That meeting was to chastise me for going after industry, and that’s all that meeting was about,’ recalled Joseph T. Rannazzisi, who ran the diversion office …

 

[O]fficials at DEA headquarters began delaying and blocking enforcement actions, and the number of cases plummeted … The judge who reviews the DEA diversion office’s civil caseload noted the plunge. ‘There can be little doubt that the level of administrative Diversion enforcement remains stunningly low for a national program,’ Chief Administrative Law Judge John J. Mulrooney II wrote in a June 2014 quarterly report …”

 

Even DEA Officials Suspected Foul Play

 

In 2013, DEA lawyers also began insisting on increasingly higher standards of proof before moving cases forward. This included proof of intent — a factor that is very difficult to prove and typically only required in criminal cases. In 2011, 131 cases were filed against distributors, manufacturers, pharmacies and doctors involved in the illegal distribution of opioids. In 2014, that number dropped to 40.

 

In that same time frame, the number of “immediate suspension orders” dropped from 65 to nine. The suspension order allows the agency to freeze shipments of narcotics, effective immediately. Many DEA officials began suspecting Clifford Lee Reeves II, the lawyer in charge of approving their cases, of secretly working for the drug industry.

 

“We all had a feeling that someone put him there to purposely stonewall these cases,” Frank Younker, a former DEA supervisor in the Cincinnati field office told The Washington Post. Younker retired two years ago after three decades with the DEA. Kathy Chaney, a DEA group supervisor in Columbus, Ohio said:

 

“We got so frustrated, I finally told my group, ‘We’re not going to send any cases up to headquarters.’ In 25 years, I had never seen anything like it. It was one of the reasons I left. Morale was terrible. I couldn’t get anything done. It was almost like being invisible … We were all very dedicated, and we were all deeply disappointed that the program was being manipulated this way.”

 

Chaney’s own mother died from an accidental Percocet overdose in 1979. She became addicted after receiving the drug following a car accident. Her mother’s death was one of the reasons Chaney joined the DEA in the first place.

 

As these comments reveal, there are many good, solid workers out there, fighting to protect public health, yet corporations have been allowed to infiltrate key positions and manipulate from the top down, preventing any real progress that might harm the industry’s bottom line. This is exactly why it’s so important to combat this transfer of officials between government agencies and the industries they’re supposed to investigate and police.

 

19 Non-Drug Solutions for Pain Relief

 

In October, comedian John Oliver took aim at the burgeoning drug epidemic,7 noting the roots of the problem: narcotic pain killers, and more importantly, drug companies that falsely claimed they were non-addictive and safe to use for virtually all kinds of pain. Well, the jig is now up, and such claims can no longer be made. It’s extremely important to be fully aware of the addictive potential of opioid drugs, and to seriously weigh your need for them.

 

There are many other ways to address pain. Below are 19 suggestions. Clearly, there are times when pain is so severe that a narcotic pain reliever may be warranted. But even in those instances, the options that follow may allow you to at least reduce the amount you take, or the frequency at which you need to take them. If you are in pain that is bearable, please try these options first, before resorting to prescription painkillers of any kind.

 

Eliminate or radically reduce most grains and sugars from your diet

 

Avoiding grains and sugars will lower your insulin and leptin levels and decrease insulin and leptin resistance, which is one of the most important reasons why inflammatory prostaglandins are produced. That is why stopping sugar and sweets is so important to controlling your pain and other types of chronic illnesses.

Take a high-quality, animal-based omega-3 fat

 

My personal favorite is krill oil. Omega-3 fats are precursors to mediators of inflammation called prostaglandins. (In fact, that is how anti-inflammatory painkillers work, by manipulating prostaglandins.)

Optimize your production of vitamin D  As we have said before, always consult your healthcare provider or call us and we will help you, because vitamin D must be taken with other vitamins, and never by inself.

 

Optimize your vitamin D by getting regular, appropriate sun exposure, which will work through a variety of different mechanisms to reduce your pain.

Medical cannabis

 

Medical marijuana has a long history as a natural analgesic. Its medicinal qualities are due to high amounts (up to 20 percent) of cannabidiol (CBD), medicinal terpenes and flavonoids.

 

Varieties of cannabis exist that are very low in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — the psychoactive component of marijuana that makes you feel “stoned” — and high in medicinal CBD. Medical marijuana is now legal in 28 states. You can learn more about the laws in your state on medicalmarijuana.procon.org.8

Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT)

 

EFT is a drug-free approach for pain management of all kinds. EFT borrows from the principles of acupuncture in that it helps you balance out your subtle energy system. It helps resolve underlying, often subconscious, and negative emotions that may be exacerbating your physical pain.

 

By stimulating (tapping) well-established acupuncture points with your fingertips, you rebalance your energy system, which tends to dissipate pain.

 

Among volunteers who had never meditated before, those who attended four 20-minute classes to learn a meditation technique called focused attention (a form of mindfulness meditation), experienced significant pain relief — a 40 percent reduction in pain intensity and a 57 percent reduction in pain unpleasantness.9

 

 

K-Laser, Class 4 Laser Therapy

 

If you suffer pain from an injury, arthritis or other inflammation-based pain, I’d strongly encourage you to try out K-Laser therapy. It can be an excellent choice for many painful conditions, including acute injuries. By addressing the underlying cause of the pain, you will no longer need to rely on painkillers.

 

K-Laser is a class 4 infrared laser therapy treatment that helps reduce pain, reduce inflammation and enhance tissue healing — both in hard and soft tissues, including muscles, ligaments or even bones. The infrared wavelengths used in the K-Laser allow for targeting specific areas of your body and can penetrate deeply into the body to reach areas such as your spine and hip.

Chiropractic

 

Many studies have confirmed that chiropractic management is much safer and less expensive than allopathic medical treatments, especially when used for pain such as low back pain.

 

Qualified chiropractic, osteopathic and naturopathic physicians are reliable, as they have received extensive training in the management of musculoskeletal disorders during their course of graduate healthcare training, which lasts between four to six years. These health experts have comprehensive training in musculoskeletal management.

Acupuncture

 

Research has discovered a “clear and robust” effect of acupuncture in the treatment of back, neck and shoulder pain, osteoarthritis and headaches.

Physical therapy

 

Physical therapy has been shown to be as good as surgery for painful conditions such as torn cartilage and arthritis.

Massage

 

A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the journal Pain Medicine included 60 high-quality and seven low-quality studies that looked into the use of massage for various types of pain, including muscle and bone pain, headaches, deep internal pain, fibromyalgia pain and spinal cord pain.10

 

The review revealed that massage therapy relieves pain better than getting no treatment at all. When compared to other pain treatments like acupuncture and physical therapy, massage therapy still proved beneficial and had few side effects. In addition to relieving pain, massage therapy also improved anxiety and health-related quality of life.

Astaxanthin

 

Astaxanthin is one of the most effective fat-soluble antioxidants known. It has very potent anti-inflammatory properties and in many cases works far more effectively than anti-inflammatory drugs. Higher doses are typically required and you may need 8 milligrams (mg) or more per day to achieve this benefit.

Ginger

 

This herb has potent anti-inflammatory activity and offers pain relief and stomach-settling properties. Fresh ginger works well steeped in boiling water as a tea or grated into vegetable juice.

Curcumin

 

In a study of osteoarthritis patients, those who added 200 milligrams (mg) of curcumin a day to their treatment plan had reduced pain and increased mobility. A past study also found that a turmeric extract composed of curcuminoids blocked inflammatory pathways, effectively preventing the overproduction of a protein that triggers swelling and pain.11

Boswellia

 

Also known as boswellin or “Indian frankincense,” this herb contains specific active anti-inflammatory ingredients. This is one of my personal favorites as I have seen it work well with many rheumatoid arthritis patients.

Bromelain

 

This enzyme, found in pineapples, is a natural anti-inflammatory. It can be taken in supplement form but eating fresh pineapple, including some of the bromelain-rich stem, may also be helpful.

Cetyl Myristoleate (CMO)

 

This oil, found in fish and dairy butter, acts as a “joint lubricant” and an anti-inflammatory. I have used this for myself to relieve ganglion cysts and a mildly annoying carpal tunnel syndrome that pops up when I type too much on non-ergonomic keyboards. I used a topical preparation for this.

Evening Primrose, Black Currant and Borage Oils

 

These contain the essential fatty acid gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which is useful for treating arthritic pain.

Cayenne Cream

 

Also called capsaicin cream, this spice comes from dried hot peppers. It alleviates pain by depleting the body’s supply of substance P, a chemical component of nerve cells that transmits pain signals to your brain.

Methods such as yoga, Foundation Training, acupuncture, exercise, meditation, hot and cold packs and mind-body techniques can also result in astonishing pain relief without any drugs.

Grounding

 

Walking barefoot on the earth may also provide a certain measure of pain relief by combating inflammation.

 

I would like to add that if you have taken opioids for a length of time, or your parents have, then you may have chemical bending DNA, and many problems have been passed down in your family.

 

Please share with family and loved ones, and please call us to help you if you suffer from this situation or any other healthcare need.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived  JM

P Carrothers

312-972-WELL

 

 

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Health and Disease, Lifestyle, Uncategorized

Smoking Damages Your DNA for Decades

smoking-cigarette

 

Smoking Damages Your DNA for Decades

Nearly 40 million adults in the U.S. smoke cigarettes.1 It is the leading cause of preventable death, accounting for 1 out of every 5 deaths in the U.S.2 Although smoking has declined by 4 percent over nine years, sales of e-cigarettes have risen an amazing 143 times from $20 million to $2.875 billion in sales per year.3

 

According to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, 130,000 cases of lung cancer diagnosed each year are attributed to smoking.4 New research now demonstrates damage to your DNA from smoking stays with you for decades.

 

While much of the damage from smoking is healed within the first five years you quit, some DNA damage doesn’t appear to revert to normal.5

 

The increasing sales of e-cigarettes may be from individuals trying to quit smoking, or from those who believe these electronic gizmos are a healthier alternative. Alas, vaping, or smoking electronic cigarettes that produce vapor instead of smoke, has its own list of negative health effects.

 

So, while you may believe e-cigarettes are healthier, you’re really just trading one serious health risk for another.

 

Smoking Affects DNA Methylation

 

Where scientists once thought the genes you were born with were the genes you were stuck with throughout life, now they have identified changes to your DNA, called methylation, that affect how your genes are expressed or may modify the way those genes affect your health.

 

The development of some health conditions are affected by your genetics. In some cases, DNA methylation will tell your genes to turn “off,” effectively changing how your body responds to the environment. DNA methylation is a signaling tool used for gene expression that’s vital to a number of cell process that control human disease.6

 

Although scientists are still working to understand the complexities of how DNA methylation and genetic expression are connected, they have identified this connection in the development of cancer (although, as explained in previous articles, genetic changes that contribute to cancer are typically downstream effects of metabolic dysfunction, not the original cause).7

 

Smoking Changes Your DNA and Increases Your Risk of Disease

 

Researchers have known that smoking alters your DNA methylation, but this recent study demonstrates how long those changes last and how widespread they may be.8

 

Lead researcher Dr. Stephanie London, chief of the Epidemiology Branch at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences in Research Triangle Park, told Reuters:9

 

“We don’t really know whether it means ‘damage’ to the DNA. That requires more study, using data outside what we have here. What we’re saying is that it’s a change to your DNA that can have a downstream effect on what genes are expressed at what levels.”

 

However, any change to your DNA by toxic substances may be considered damage. The amount of damage and the consequences for that damage is where researchers will be focusing further study. This study combined data from a set of participants from 16 other studies, using blood samples from over 15,000 people.

 

The team compared the samples from current smokers to former smokers and those who said they had never smoked.10 People who were currently smoking had over 2,500 genetic changes to their DNA.

 

After a smoker quits, much of the DNA changes revert back to their original state, but some remain changed even decades later. The researchers found 185 locations that were significantly different between people who formerly smoked and those who had never smoked.

 

DNA Methylation Affects Development of Cancers and Chronic Diseases

 

Smoking changes your DNA methylation, affecting your gene expression. Researchers have linked these changes in gene expression from methylation to both the development of cancers and the expression of cardiovascular disease.11,12,13,14

 

London, quoted in Medical News Today, expressed her concern over the long-term effects smokers may experience:15

 

“These results are important because methylation, as one of the mechanisms of the regulation of gene expression, affects what genes are turned on, which has implications for the development of smoking-related diseases.

 

Equally important is our finding that even after someone stops smoking, we still see the effects of smoking on their DNA.”

 

DNA methylation is also linked to prenatal cigarette exposure and the development of chronic disease when the child grows to adulthood.16,17

 

Although adverse effects of smoking during pregnancy have been well-documented, most media attention is on preterm birth, low birth weight, brain damage to the baby, birth defects and lung damage.18

 

Only now are other long-term health conditions associated with prenatal or early postnatal exposure to cigarette smoke. Children exposed to smoke have increased risk of behavioral and developmental problems including attention deficit disorder (ADD) and other conduct disorders.19

 

Other studies demonstrate links between prenatal smoking exposure and the development of cardiovascular disease, obesity and diabetes in adulthood.20 Further studies specifically link nicotine exposure to long term health conditions in children.21

 

You Absorb Nicotine From the Air Through Your Skin

 

Breathing secondhand smoke triggers health conditions much like if you were smoking yourself. Exposure to smoke led researchers to question if the only way your body absorbed nicotine was through inhaling. Could you absorb the chemicals through your skin?

 

Nicotine patches are used to help smokers control their urge to smoke and theoretically help them stop smoking. In this case, the chemical is placed directly against the user’s skin and held in place with a patch. Is it possible to absorb nicotine from the air as well?

 

Findings from a new study demonstrate that your body can absorb nicotine from secondhand smoke or wearing clothes that have been exposed to smoke.22

 

These results are especially important for children and teens who are exposed to smoking or vaping. Charles Weschler, Ph.D., co-author of the study and chemist at Rutgers University, was quoted in Science News for Students, saying:23,24

 

“If you’re in a room where smoking or vaping is occurring, you’re taking in the smoke through your skin as well as your lungs.”

 

Researchers found the dose absorbed by the participants was not trivial and amounted to the same as smoking between 0.5 and six cigarettes. Lead researcher, Gabriel Beko, Ph.D., civil engineer from the Technical University of Denmark, said this was about as much as you could expect to inhale in a smoky room.25

 

This means the amount of smoke you may be absorbing from a smoky room is greater than the chemicals you’re inhaling. Researchers also found that wearing clothing that was exposed to smoke also increases your absorption of nicotine.

 

E-Cigarettes Are Not the Answer

 

 

E-cigarettes deliver a dose of nicotine. In this short video you’ll discover more of the side effects you may experience from nicotine in your cigarettes or e-cigarettes. Studies demonstrate the health dangers in using nicotine, the active ingredient in e-cigarettes. Your risks may be slightly different, but they are no less dangerous than smoking tobacco.

 

Research has determined that individuals who quit smoking for at least three to six months have the greatest chance of stopping smoking permanently.26 While you may feel it’s reasonable to use e-cigarettes to help you stop smoking, the reality is that you continue to remain addicted to nicotine and engage in the same addictive activity.

 

E-cigarettes deliver a dose of nicotine, the drug in cigarettes to which your body is addicted, through an electronic mechanism that doesn’t contain any of the other harmful chemicals found in cigarettes. But while many would like to think the jury is out on whether vaping is harmful for your health, data from several studies published in early 2015 demonstrate otherwise.

 

Nicotine is one of the oldest botanical insecticides,27 and a powerful poison.28  Researchers have linked nicotine to a number of different health conditions.29

 

Doing a Medline and PubMed database search on specific keywords, researchers gathered data from over 3,400 different articles and studies. From the analysis, they found nicotine adversely affects the cardiovascular, respiratory, renal and reproductive systems. It promotes the creation of tumors by affecting cell proliferation and increases resistance to chemotherapeutic agents.30

 

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more people in America are addicted to nicotine than any other drug, and it may be as addictive as heroin, cocaine or alcohol.31 The Cleveland Clinic warns that preliminary studies show nicotine does direct damage to your heart cells and vascular cells.32

 

This damage triggers an inflammatory response and may lead to atherosclerosis.33 Meanwhile, it is unclear whether adding nicotine to your body, the drug to which you are addicted, will help you stop smoking, or if e-cigarettes help or just get in your way.34

 

Flavors and Heat Raise the Risk

 

In 2014, the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC) took over 3,700 calls of nicotine poisoning in children from e-cigarettes.35 But nicotine is not the only concern if you vape. There are over 7,000 flavoring chemicals for e-cigarettes, designed to enhance the flavor and engage more users.

 

Researchers from Harvard School of Public Health selected 51 of those flavors to evaluate. They found nearly all the flavorings contained chemicals with known negative effects on your health. In a press release from Harvard, lead author Joseph Allen, assistant professor of exposure assessment science, stated:36

 

“Recognition of the hazards associated with inhaling flavoring chemicals started with ‘Popcorn Lung’ over a decade ago. However, diacetyl and other related flavoring chemicals are used in many other flavors beyond butter-flavored popcorn, including fruit flavors, alcohol flavors, and, we learned in our study, candy flavored e-cigarettes.”

 

Co-author David Christiani, also stated:37

 

“Since most of the health concerns about e-cigarettes have focused on nicotine, there is still much we do not know about e-cigarettes. In addition to containing varying levels of the addictive substance nicotine, they also contain other cancer-causing chemicals, such as formaldehyde, and as our study shows, flavoring chemicals that can cause lung damage.”

 

At high voltage, 3 milligrams of e-cigarette liquid can generate 14 milligrams of formaldehyde.38 This is slightly less than you would inhale in five packs of regular cigarettes. In an NCB News interview, co-author James Pankow, Ph.D., and professor of chemistry and engineering at Portland State University, said:39

 

“It’s way too early now from an epidemiological point of view to say how bad they are. But the bottom line is, there are toxins and some are more than in regular cigarettes. And if you are vaping, you probably shouldn’t be using it at a high-voltage setting.”

 

US Food and Drug Administration Fighting the Tobacco Industry

 

According to the CDC, 15 percent of Americans over 18 smoke cigarettes.40 According to Tobacco Free Kids, 12.6 percent have tried e-cigarettes and 3.7 percent use them consistently.41 Although a smaller percentage of the market, the tobacco industry recognizes the economic potential behind e-cigarette sales and has wholeheartedly invested time and money into influencing legislation.

 

Battle lines have been drawn between the tobacco industry and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which wants to retroactively examine e-cigarettes, cigars and pipe and hookah tobacco for public health risks.42 A bipartisan effort of lobbyists and influential congressional allies are arguing the Deeming Rule could hurt public health by ultimately forcing smaller e-cigarette companies out of business.

 

The Deeming Rule, announced in May 2016, is a step the FDA implemented to allow the agency to “protect future generations from the dangers of tobacco use through a variety of steps, including restricting the sale of these tobacco products to minors nationwide.”43

 

Flying in the face of multiple studies that prove otherwise, Chritian Berkey, chief executive of Johnson Creek Enterprises, a company that sells the e-liquid ingredient for vaping products, stated in The New York Times: “The FDA has blatantly ignored evidence that our products improve people’s lives.”44 Defending the FDA’s position against the tobacco industry, Mitch Zeller, director of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products was quoted in The New York Times saying:45

 

” . . . [T]he marketplace has been the wild, wild West. Companies were free to introduce any product they wanted, make any claim they wanted, and that is how we wound up with a 900 percent increase in high schoolers using e-cigarettes and as well as all these reports of exploding e-cigarette batteries and products that have caused burns and fires and disfigurement.”

 

Trading Your Health for Profits

 

The largest tobacco company in the U.S., Altria (formerly known as Philip Morris Co.), has been funding the lobbying effort to overturn the FDA rule. With a growing e-cigarette unit, Altria distributed their draft of legislation that would eliminate the Deeming Rule for e-cigarettes already on the market.

 

The New York Times reported that two weeks after delivery of this draft to his office, Representative Tom Cole of Oklahoma introduced the bill with 245 words pulled verbatim from the tobacco industry draft. Cole received one of the highest campaign contributions from the tobacco industry.

 

In an interview with The New York Times, ranking Democrat on the House Appropriations Committee, Nita Lowey of New York, expressed her embarrassment that more than 70 lawmakers were willing to co-sponsor legislation originally drafted by the tobacco industry. She stated:46

 

“For Congress to consider going backward in how we regulate the public health hazard is simply mind-boggling. It wasn’t that long ago that tobacco companies were telling the public that cigarettes were not addictive and denying clear evidence that they caused cancer.”

 

In a letter to the editor at The New York Times, former federal judge Haddon Lee Sarokin republished an opinion he had written 24 years ago, as he believes it is equally valid today, in regard to the e-cigarette industry, as it was back then. At the time, this opinion was heavily criticized by the Senate, causing him to be removed from tobacco cases.

 

“All too often in the choice between the physical health of consumers and the financial well-being of business, concealment is chosen over disclosure, sales over safety and money over morality. Who are these persons who knowingly and secretly decide to put the buying public at risk solely for the purpose of making profits and who believe that illness and death of consumers is an appropriate cost of their own prosperity!”47

 

If You Want to Quit Smoking, Do This First

 

I believe the “secret” to quitting smoking is to get healthy first, which will make quitting much easier. Exercising is part and parcel of this plan, as research shows people who engage in regular strength training double their success rate at quitting smoking compared to those who don’t exercise.48 Healthy eating is another crucial aspect that can’t be ignored. In short, if you want to quit, here are the three basic tips to get you started:

 

Read through my comprehensive free nutrition plan to get started eating right.

Develop a well-rounded exercise regimen. It is your ally to fighting disease and to quitting smoking. Strength training is an important part, but also remember to incorporate high-intensity interval exercises like Peak Fitness, core-strengthening exercises, stretching and regular non-exercise movement (like walking and cutting back on sitting).

Find a healthy emotional outlet. Many people use exercise, meditation or relaxation techniques for this, and these are all great. I also recommend incorporating the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT). This can help clear out emotional blockages from your system (some of which you might not even realize are there), thus restoring your mind and body’s balance and helping you break the addiction and avoid cravings.

Once you are regularly doing these three things, then you can begin to think about quitting smoking. At this point many are ready to try quitting “cold turkey.” Predict your urge to smoke, and preplan healthier alternatives and distractions. Finally, if you’re a parent, talk with your children about the risks of smoking, smokeless tobacco and e-cigarettes. The easiest pathway to not smoking is to avoid starting in the first place.

 

 

Please share with family and loved ones.

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived   JM

312-972-WELL

Health and Disease, Lifestyle, Uncategorized

Suncreen lotions are killing you and your family

sunscreen

 

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

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Diets and Weight Loss

Artificial Sweeteners Alters DNA

artificialsweeteners

Artificial Sweeteners Alters DNA

Sucralose is an artificial sweetener found in thousands of consumer foods and beverages. It is noncaloric and is 300 to 1,000 times as sweet as table sugar.

The chemical structure of sucralose is very similar to table sugar, but it contains three chlorine atoms, which table sugar does not.

The FDA claims that sucralose is safe for human consumption. But if you study the clinical literature behind sucralose, I don’t know how any person could come to that conclusion.

Animal studies found that large doses of sucralose disrupted intestinal flora by decreasing the amount of bacteria by 50 percent and increasing the pH level in the colon. This caused increases in body weight.

However, these results were found only when rats ingested very large amounts of sucralose.

There are many side effects associated with sucralose, including:

• Allergic reactions

• Blurred vision

• Dizziness

• Elevated blood sugar and insulin

• Gastrointestinal problems

• Migraines

• Seizures

• Weight gain

Sucralose was also found to alter the normal DNA in mice, a process that can cause cancer.

And if that isn’t bad enough, when it is heated sucralose can turn into toxic chloropropanols and other dioxin-like compounds.

Clearly, sucralose should be avoided. It has no therapeutic value and it is associated with a host of adverse effects, particularly when heated.

Health and Wellness Associates

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