Holidays can be tough when you are trying to eat healthy and maintain/lose weight. Here are some simple easy tips:
1)Eat a light, healthy snack before you go to a party. Try green smoothie drink!
2)Bring a healthy dish to share and for you to enjoy as well.
3)Do not over-indulge! Enjoy smaller portions of food you like.
4)Eat and chew your food slowly.
5)Avoid drinking sugary drinks or limit alcohol or sugary drink to 1/2 or one drink only.
6)Fill your plate with vegetables.
7)Drink water preferably with lemon. Hydrate!
8)Be active. Walk with family/friends or play games.
9)Practice meditations or prayers for relaxation.
10)Take natural supplements to boost your immune systems.
If you have other tips that worked for you,feel free to share it by posting it here.
Please read the article below by Dr. Mercola to find out the health benefits of eating apples a day!
- Apples are packed with disease-fighting vitamins, antioxidants and more, making one of the top-ranked fruits for your health
- Eating apples has been linked to a lower risk of chronic diseases including type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and dementia
- Eating apples in their whole form, not juicing them, will give you the synergistic blend of nutrients and fiber the way nature intended, yielding greater health benefits than apple juice
October 28, 2013 |
By Dr. Mercola
Apples are the second most popular fruit in the US (bananas are the first), with each American eating about 19 pounds a year. Undoubtedly, many of those apples are consumed right now, during the fall, which is peak season for apples in the US. This is one sweet treat that you can feel good about eating, too, as apples are packed with disease-fighting vitamins, antioxidants and more, easily making them one of the top-ranked fruits for your health. Apples Ranked Second Highest for Antioxidant Activity.
Compared to other commonly consumed fruits in the US, apples ranked second for highest antioxidant activity. However, they ranked highest for the proportion offree phenolic compounds, which means they are not bound to other compounds in the fruit and therefore may be more easily absorbed into your bloodstream. Notably, much of apples’ antioxidant power is contained in the peel, where you’ll find antioxidants like catechin, procyanidins, chlorogenic acid, ploridizin and more.
According to the New York Fruit Quarterly:
“Since apples are so high in antioxidants, it is no surprise that apples,
specifically, are associated with a decreased risk of chronic disease. Three studies have specifically linked apple consumption with a decreased risk for cancer… [and] a study has shown that apple and pear consumption has been associated with a decreased risk of asthma.
Apple consumption has also been associated with a decreased risk of coronary heart disease… [and] a reduced risk of Type II diabetes was associated with apple and berry consumption in another major Finnish study.
In the laboratory, apples and the compounds in them have properties that may explain their effects in protecting against disease. Our lab has found that apples, and especially apple peels, have powerful antioxidant activity and can greatly inhibit the growth of liver cancer and colon cancer cells. Based on results from all of these studies, it appears that apples may play a significant role in reducing the risk of a wide
variety of diseases.”
I have four apple trees where I live in Chicago but hadn’t eaten that many of them. After reviewing this information, I think I will be consuming more next year, as the harvest season just finished for this year.
An Apple a Day to Keep 5 Chronic Diseases Away?
A wealth of research suggests that eating apples may impact your health in a number of beneficial ways: 5
“Apple products have been shown to prevent skin, mammary and colon carcinogenesis in animal models. Epidemiological observations indicate that regular consumption of one or more apples a day may reduce the risk for lung and colon cancer.”
- Brain Health: Apples have been found to protect neuron cells against oxidative stress-induced neurotoxicity and may play an important role in reducing the risk of neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease.6
- Stroke: Eating apples is linked to a decreased risk of stroke.7
- Diabetes: Three servings of apples (and other fruits, such as blueberries and grapes) is linked to a 7 percent lower risk of type 2 diabetes.8 This may be due to their beneficial role in blood sugar regulation, as apples contain compounds that may:9
- Lessen absorption of glucose from your digestive tract
- Stimulate beta cells in your pancreas to secrete insulin
- Increase uptake of glucose from your blood by stimulating insulin receptors
- Cancer: Apples have a number of properties that may help reduce the risk of cancer, including antimutagenic activity, antioxidant activity, anti-inflammatory mechanisms, antiproliferative and apoptosis-inducing activity, as well as "novel mechanisms on epigenetic events and innate immunity." According to the journal Planta Medica:10
- Heart Disease: Eating apples is associated with a lower risk of death from heart disease, an association that’s thought to be related to their content of antioxidant flavonoids.11
Eat Whole Apples for the Most Health 'Bang' for Your BuckWhile applesauce and apple juice do contain some valuable vitamins and antioxidants, eating apples in their whole form will give you the synergistic blend of nutrients and fiber the way nature intended. This is important for a number of reasons. For instance, apples are often thought of as a high-fiber food and many of its heart health benefits are linked to a type of fiber called pectin.
In reality, apples really only contain about two to three grams of fiber per ounce, of which pectin accounts for about half. Even though this is a modest amount of pectin, it has a powerful impact on your health because of its interactions with other apple phytonutrients. As explained by the World’s Healthiest Foods:12“… this relatively modest amount of pectin found in whole apples has now been shown to interact with other apple phytonutrients to give us the kind of blood fat lowering effects that would typically be associated with much higher amounts of soluble fiber intake.In recent comparisons with laboratory animals, the blood fat lowering effects of whole apple were shown to be greatly reduced when whole apples were eliminated from the diet and replaced by pectin alone.In summary, it's not fiber alone that explains the cardiovascular benefits of apple, but the interaction of fiber with other phytonutrients in this wonderful fruit. If you want the full cardiovascular benefits of apples, it's the whole food form that you'll want to choose. Only this form can provide you with those unique fiber-plus-phytonutrient combinations.”
Similarly, research shows that eating a whole apple before a meal may lead you to eat 15 percent fewer calories – an effect that was not associated with applesauce or apple juice.13
Eating a whole apple was also linked with greater feelings of satiety after a meal.
Some People May Need to Eat Apples in ModerationThe other variable we haven’t yet covered is fructose, a type of sugar that is linked to many chronic health problems when consumed in excess. I believe most will benefit from restricting their fructose to 25 grams a day, and as little as 15 grams a day if you have insulin or leptin resistance.
fructose from whole fruits like apples. Apples are a relatively high-fructose fruit, with 9.5 grams in a medium-sized apple. Apple juice
will contain considerably more, which is another reason why you’re better off eating apples in their whole form.
It is also important to time your eating of fructose-rich foods like apple correctly. One of the tricks that I personally use is to time my fruit intake. Eating one after a calorie-rich meal for ‘dessert’ will not have the same effect as if you eat it after a glycogen-depleting workout.
In the former case, the apple’s fructose is more likely to contribute to weight gain and insulin resistance; in the latter case, it will harmlessly replenish your glycogen stores within your muscles or be burned directly during your workout. I have actually been able to lose weight by increasing my fruit intake in this fashion. This works far better if you are metabolically adapted to burn fat as your primary fuel.
If you’re insulin or leptin resistant (are overweight, diabetic, hypertensive, or have high cholesterol), which includes about 80 percent of Americans, then it would be advisable for you to limit your fruit intake to about 15 grams per day, which would be equivalent to eating approximately one apple and a handful of blueberries -- unless you timed the fruit consumption as described above and were doing fairly significant exercise in which you were burning a few hundred calories.
If you are not
insulin/leptin resistant, (are normal weight without diabetes, hypertension or high cholesterol) and
regularly engage in strenuous physical activity or manual labor, then
higher fructose intake is unlikely to cause any health problems. In this case, you can probably eat more fruit without giving it much thought.
What Else Should You Look for in an Apple?Because much of the antioxidant content of an apple is found in its peel, you’ll want to leave the peel on when you eat it. For this reason, look for organic
apples, which will be free from pesticides and other chemicals. Apples are one of the most pesticide-contaminated fruits there is,14
so if you’re planning to eat more apples, make them organic. If you purchase conventional apples, briefly soaking them in a solution of 10 percent vinegar to 90 percent water may help to remove some pesticides (and bacteria).
But keep in mind that many pesticides are lipophilic, and are therefore capable of entering through the surface of conventional produce deep into the flesh of the fruit or vegetable within minutes. If you have your own apple trees, you can integrate high-performance agriculture techniques
that will radically increase the nutrient content and also virtually eliminate any diseases that the apples might be acquire. When it comes to choosing an apple, the Washington State Apple Commission recommends:15
- Choosing an apple with shiny, not dull, skin (dull apples will not be crisp)
- Firm apples free from bruises and punctures
- Refrigerating apples at 39 degrees F to maintain crispness
- Protecting cut apples from browning by dipping them into a solution of one part citrus juice to three parts water
If you’re looking for even more apple facts and nutrition information, be sure to check out our apple food facts
- Last winter, beekeepers across the US reported losing anywhere from 40 percent to 90 percent of their hives, and many of the 6,000 almond orchard owners in California could not find enough bees to pollinate their almond trees this year
- There are about 100 crop species that provide 90 percent of food globally and, of these, 71 are pollinated by bees. In the US alone, a full one-third of the food supply depends on pollination from bees
| | Story at-a-glance
- A first-of-its-kind pilot study reveals that more than half of garden plants attractive to bees sold at Home Depot and Lowe’s have been pre-treated with pesticides that could in fact be lethal to the bees
- 50,000 bumblebees were recently found dead in a parking lot in Portland, Oregon. The pesticide dinotefuran, a so-called neonicotinoid, was found to have been applied to nearby trees
By Dr. Mercola
There are about 100 crop species that provide 90 percent of food globally and, of these, 71 are pollinated by bees. In the US alone, a full one-third of the food supply depends on pollination from bees. I mention this to stress the full ramifications of bee die-offs, which continue unabated.
Last winter, beekeepers across the US reported losing anywhere from 40 percent to 90 percent of their hives, and many of the 6,000 almond orchard owners in California
could not find enough bees to pollinate their almond trees, at any price, this year.
According to Friends of the Earth,1
50,000 bumblebees were recently found dead in a Target parking lot in Portland, Oregon. The pesticide dinotefuran, a so-called neonicotinoid, was found to have been applied to nearby trees prior to the “massacre.”
In July, tens of millions of dead bees were found on a farm in Ontario, Canada. In this case, the deaths were thought to be linked to the dust coming off neonic-treated corn seeds that were being planted.
A general consensus among beekeepers is that the bee die-offs are most definitely related to toxic chemicals, and nicotine-related compounds called nicotinoids in particular.
Lawsuit Filed and Bill Introduced to Protect Bees...Nicotinoids were initially introduced as a new form of pesticide in the 1990s, as widespread pest resistance rendered many older pesticides useless. The disappearance of bee colonies began accelerating in the US shortly after
the EPA allowed these new pesticides on the market in the mid-2000s.
Today, they are the most widely-used pesticides in the world. In California alone, there are nearly 300 registered neonicotinoid products available. In addition to foliage applications, many seeds are now also pre-treated with neonicotinoids, which are water-soluble and break down slowly in the environment. Virtually allgenetically engineered Bt corn
crops grown in the US are treated with neonicotinoids.
In May, American beekeepers and environmental groups filed a lawsuit
against the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) over its failure to protect bees from these toxic pesticides.
France has already banned imidacloprid for use on corn and sunflowers after large losses of bees were reported as a result of exposure to the pesticide. They also rejected Bayer´s application for clothianidin, and other countries, such as Italy, have banned certain neonicotinoids as well.
The European Commission also recently announced it will suspend the use of three neonicotinoids (clothianidin, imidacloprid, and thiamethoxam) on flowering plants in EU countries as of December 1, 2013. The US, however, has not followed suit... In fact, the EPA has decided to delay action on nicotinoids until 2018!
In July, following the travesty in Oregon, US Representatives Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) and John Conyers (D-Mich.) introduced the “Save America’s Pollinators Act
” (H.R. 2692).
This bill would suspend the use of neonicotinoids on seeds, soils, and bee-attractive plants until such time that the EPA has reviewed all of the available data. The Oregon Department of Agriculture has already issued a prohibition of cosmetic use of pesticides containing dinotefuran for the remainder of this year, as a precautionary measure.
Tests Tie Bee Die-Offs to Pretreated Plants Sold at Garden CentersNow, a first-of-its-kind pilot study2
, released by Friends of the Earth and its allies, reveals that many homeowners unwittingly contribute to the problem by purchasing so-called “bee friendly” garden plants sold at Home Depot, Lowe’s, and other garden centers —i.e. plants that attract bees—that have been pre-treated with pesticides that could in fact be lethal to the bees.
As it turns out, more than half of the plants tested were found to have these toxic pesticide residues. Contaminated plants included tomatoes, squash, salvia and flowers that would be attractive to pollinators. As reported by Friends of the Earth3
: “The pilot study, co-authored by the Pesticide Research Institute, found that 7 of 13 samples of garden plants purchased at top retailers in Washington D.C., the San Francisco Bay Area and Minneapolis contain neurotoxic pesticides known as neonicotinoids that studies show could harm or kill bees and other pollinators... 'Our investigation is the first to show that so called ‘bee-friendly’ garden plants contain pesticides that can poison bees, with no warning to gardeners,' said Lisa Archer, director of the Food and Technology Program at Friends of the Earth. 'Bees are essential to our food system and they are dying at alarming rates. Neonic pesticides are a key part of the problem we can start to fix right now in our own backyards.'”
What You Can Do to Protect Bees on Your Home TurfThe study makes a number of recommendations for garden retailers, wholesale retailers, home gardeners, as well as cities, counties and states, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and Congress. Home gardeners and institutional purchasers such as schools, private companies, and hospitals, for example, can:
- Plant only neonicotinoid-free plants on your property and around your facilities (e.g. landscaping around parking lots, grounds and gardens).
- Let your local nursery manager know that you will only purchase neonicotinoids-free plants, and ask the manager to forward your request to their corporate headquarters, plant growers and suppliers.
- Ask your landscaping company to avoid all neonicotinoids and pretreated plants. Also, make sure they are not using the organophosphate pesticide trichlorfon, and avoid using Roundup to control weeds around your home or business.
- Practice bee-safe pest control: Avoid using pesticides that are toxic to bees in your garden. Read the label and avoid using products that contain acetamiprid, clothianidin, imidacloprid, and thiamethoxam as active ingredients. Instead, use alternative approaches such as providing habitat to attract beneficial insects that prey on pests. Insecticidal soaps or oils and other eco-friendly pest control products can also be used if need be.
- Check the products you already have, and if they contain any of the nicotinoids mentioned above, please dispose of them properly or take them back to the store where you bought them. The pesticide diazinon (sold under the brand names Diazinon or Spectracide) has been banned from residential use, but there might be some left in your old garden shed, so check for this one as well.
Ecosystem Threatened by 'Gross Underestimate' of Toxicity of NeonicotinoidsWhile the effects of neonicotinoids pose an immediate threat to our food supply by killing bees, they also pose a grave danger to other animals in the food chain. According to recent research by the American Bird Conservancy (ABC), one of the leading bird conservation organizations in the US, the use of neonicotinoids in seed treatments is also responsible for the death of birds, terrestrial and aquatic invertebrates, and other wildlife.
ABC commissioned the world renowned environmental toxicologist Dr. Pierre Mineau to conduct the research, which resulted in a 100-page report4
The Impact of the Nation’s Most Widely Used Insecticides on Birds.” Mineau’s report reviews 200 studies on neonicotinoids, including industry research obtained through the US Freedom of Information Act. The report concludes that neonicotinoids “are lethal to birds and to the aquatic systems on which they depend.” Even more disturbing, contamination levels in both surface and ground water around the world are already beyond the threshold found to kill many aquatic invertebrates. According to this shocking toxicology assessment:
- A single kernel of corn treated with this type of pesticide can kill a songbird
- A single grain of wheat or canola treated with the neonicotinoids Imidacloprid can be fatal to a bird
- As little as 1/10th of a neonicotinoid-coated corn seed per day during egg-laying season can affect a bird’s reproductive capability
In response to these findings, the American Bird Conservancy is calling for a ban on the use of neonicotinoids as seed treatments, and wants all pending applications for neonicotinoid products to be suspended pending an independent review of the products’ effects on other animals besides bees.
As reported by the ABC5
: “It is clear that these chemicals have the potential to affect entire food chains. The environmental persistence of the neonicotinoids, their propensity for runoff and for groundwater infiltration, and their cumulative and largely irreversible mode of action in invertebrates raise significant environmental concerns... The serious risk to bees should not be understated, as one-third of the US diet depends on these insect pollinators. The ABC assessment makes clear, however, that the potential environmental impacts of neonicotinoids go well beyond bees.”
Four Toxic Pesticides Get EPA Advisory LabelFortunately, there are some signs that the insistent and dire warnings are finally starting to seep through to the EPA. On August 15, the agency issued a press release6
announcing a new advisory label for four of the most widely used neonicotinoids: imidacloprid, dinotefuran, clothianidin and thiamethoxam. The advisory label states in bold red letters: "This product can kill bees and other insect pollinators."
The labels also provide information on exposure routes and spray drift precautions. According to the press release: “In an ongoing effort to protect bees and other pollinators, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has developed new pesticide labels that prohibit use of some neonicotinoid pesticide products where bees are present. 'Multiple factors play a role in bee colony declines, including pesticides. The Environmental Protection Agency is taking action to protect bees from pesticide exposure and these label changes will further our efforts,' said Jim Jones, assistant administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention.”
Take Action NOW to Help Save the Bees, and Our Food SupplyPesticides have a dramatic impact on the health of our ecosystem. Neonicotinoids kill insects by attacking their nervous systems, and these pesticides are known to get into pollen and nectar, thereby posing a grave hazard to beneficial
insects such as bees. Truly, the stakes couldn’t be any higher, with at least one-third of the US food supply being dependent on these pollinators.
While many pesticides may contribute to the problem, neonicotinoids have been implicated as one of the primary culprits in the mass die-off of bees, and have subsequently been banned in some countries. The United States, however, is not among them. We absolutely need to press Congress and the EPA to get their act together... As stated by Nichelle Harriott, staff scientist at Beyond Pesticides7
: “The bees and beekeepers are telling us they can’t wait until 2018 -- and neither can we. Retailers, EPA and Congress need to step up their efforts to protect pollinators.”
Although the EPA has not yet taken action, there is still much that can be done to protect bees across the nation. The report released by Friends of the Earth and its allies shows that more than half of the “bee-friendly” home garden plants found in garden centers like Home Depot and Lowe’s are in fact toxic to bees, yet sold without any warning to gardeners. Please join us in asking the CEOs of Lowe’s and Home Depot, Robert Niblock and Frank Blake, to pull all bee-killing pesticides from their shelves and stop selling neonicotinoid-treated plants. “Europe has already banned bee-harming pesticides, and top retailers in the U.K. are refusing to sell them. Now Home Depot's and Lowe’s CEOs need to make the same commitment here,”
Friends of the Earth says.
Please, take a moment right now to sign your name to the letter to Home Depot and Lowe’s on Friends of the Earth’s Action page
My Researcher's Own Story: "How I Beat Breast Cancer"May 02 2012 | 72,713 views | 74 comments |
Studies show that surgery or needle biopsies on tiny spots seen in mammograms, and the extra radiation needed to perform these procedures, can actually increase your risk for developing breast cancer, whereas had it been left alone, it may never have developed into cancer at all.
- A growing body of evidence is showing that mammography leads to over-testing, overdiagnosis, and unnecessary medical procedures, particularly in dense-breasted women, who are more prone to getting false positives or false negatives on mammograms.
- Diet and lifestyle changes can help prevent, and in some cases even treat, all kinds of cancers, including breast cancer.
- One of my employees details the events that led up to her breast cancer misdiagnosis, and the proactive steps she took to optimize her health and become cancer-free
Recently, the Harvard School of Public Health shook the cancer industry when it published research showing that mammograms may not only be inappropriate for breast cancer screening, but may actually contribute to significant overdiagnosis of cancer that otherwise would have remained harmlessi
According to lead author Mette Kalagerii
:"Mammography might not be appropriate for use in breast cancer screening because it cannot distinguish between progressive and non-progressive cancer...Radiologists have been trained to find even the smallest of tumors in a bid to detect as many cancers as possible to be able to cure breast cancer.However, the present study adds to the increasing body of evidence that this practice has caused a problem for women—diagnosis of breast cancer that wouldn't cause symptoms or death."
When the scientists also suggested that women need to know the potential harm of mammography errors, the American College of Radiology and Society of Breast Imaging were quick to accuse Harvard's study of being flawed.
But as more and more women come forward with stories of how they've lost their breasts and undergone grueling cancer treatments as a result of overzealous screening, it's apparent the Harvard team knows what they're talking about.
A Case in Point...The Harvard study, released April 3, 2012, reinforces the story of one of the literature researchers that work for this newsletter, whom I mentioned in an article on cancer
last year. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010, and scheduled for several months of chemotherapy and radiation when she sought a second opinion at a renowned cancer institute. There, she learned chemo was inappropriate because her type of cancer doesn't respond to it."Since chemo is poison, why would we want to poison you for no reason?"
the oncologist told her.
Now she's agreed to let me tell the rest of her story—one that is a perfect example of what Dr. Kalager was alluding to. Because of its flaws, mammography can lead to an overzealous search for possible cancer, overdiagnosis and, ultimately, unnecessary
medical procedures for something that, left alone, may never have developed into cancer at all.
Of course the breast imaging industry wasted no time firing off a scathing response to the researcher's commentsiii
. But as I said, my employee's story illustrates the study's central thesis exactly: that a growing body of evidence is showing that mammography may be doing more harm than good for a great number of women.
A Teeny Tiny Dot—Followed by a Slew of ProceduresFrom the year she turned 40, this employee never missed a mammogram
. Like many women, she mistakenly believed it was the most appropriate way to prevent breast cancer. She didn't work for me then, so she didn't know that radiation from mammograms can actually CAUSE canceriv
. But in 2008, everything changed."I had no lumps, no problems, it was just my regular screening,"
she told me. "But after my 2008 mammogram, the technician said she'd seen something on it and needed to do an ultrasound right away. So that's what we did. But when she was done, she left and came back with another tech, who did a second ultrasound. Then they both left and came back with the radiologist, who did a THIRD ultrasound. After a lengthy exam, the radiologist announced he was scheduling me for an MRI with dye immediately."
The radiologist explained that he saw a tiny calcification in her breast, and since the ultrasound couldn't tell him whether it was cancerous, he needed to do the MRI. The MRI was done, but that report wasn't clear either, listing a final diagnosis as simply "suspicious." The radiologist wasn't satisfied."He called me at home and said he needed to do a stereotactic biopsy right away
," she said. "Scared, I agreed to it. It was a biopsy from hell, indescribably painful. In the middle of it, the radiologist commented that my 'breast density' prevented him from getting a good sighting on where to do the biopsy. I thought he was referring to all the weight I'd gained in the past few years."
The biopsy came back negative. But her ordeal wasn't over. She was next sent to a surgeon, who determined that she needed a lumpectomy, despite the negative lab report. So a lumpectomy it was—and that, too, came back negative.
Surgery or Needle Biopsies Can Actually CAUSE Cancer"I was so relieved,"
she told me. "But when I went back for my post-op checkup, there was a small lump at the surgery spot. I didn't know at the time that there all kinds of studies about how the slightest injury or cut, as well as surgeries and biopsies can actually cause cancervi—I just heard that on ABC News recentlyvii. I also didn't know about other studies showing that injuries like my biopsy not only can trigger invasive cancer, but that mammographic compression can spread itviii ."So when the surgeon said the lump was probably only a hematoma, I went home and ignored it. The lump was still there when it was time for my 2009 mammogram, and I pointed it out to the tech, who looked at it, felt it, and said it might just be scar tissue. When she came out and said everything was fine and I could go home, I asked if she was going to do an ultrasound on the lump, but she said no, there was no need."
'No Evidence of Cancer'The written mammogram report reiterated the tech's verbal report, saying there was "no evidence of cancer" in her breast. In 2010 she showed the tech the lump again, and again the tech said everything was "fine.""But this time I didn't believe it,"
she said. "So I went somewhere else before I even got the report back. I had a biopsy—and learned I had cancer. The very day of my surgery [mastectomy] I got the letter from the radiology center saying they were 'pleased to inform' me they'd found 'no evidence of cancer' in my breast. It was so crazy I couldn't even find it in me to cry."
After the mastectomy, the surgeon wrote her a prescription for a wig and scheduled her for chemo and radiation."But by this time I was working for Dr. Mercola, and I was very much aware of my power to take control of my own health,"
she said. "So I did some proactive things right then and there, to make sure I was doing everything possible to fight this cancer."
Diet, Exercise, Lifestyle ChangesThe first thing she did was take a cold, hard look at the cancer risk factors of her overall health, diet, and lifestyle."I don't have diabetes or heart problems or cholesterol,"
she said. "But I was overweight—a definite risk for both breast cancer and its recurrenceix. Also, despite Dr. Mercola's warnings on aspartame, I was addicted to Diet Coke—I knew for a fact that in clinical studies, aspartame caused breast tumors in mice, but I still drank it. It was a given that I didn't watch my diet; I didn't exercise; and I had no clue what my vitamin D3 levels were, even though I was aware that deficient levels of D3 are associated with breast cancer."
Based on my recommendations, she implemented the following immediate changes:
"And then I scheduled an appointment for a second opinion on the cancer treatment,"
- Started supplementing with 10,000 IUs of vitamin D3 every day
- Gave up ALL forms of soda, both diet and regular
- Went on a grain-free diet and gave up refined sugars and flours
- Began exercising
she said. "My new doctors gave me something called an OncoType Dx test, a type of DNA testx that tells you the likelihood of your cancer coming back in the next 10 years, and whether your cancer is responsive or not to chemo. That's how I found out that, No. 1, my chances of it coming back were very low; and No. 2, that my kind of cancer doesn't respond to chemo. When other tests showed no evidence of cancer elsewhere in my body, I declined radiation, so I had neither chemo nor radiation."
A Natural, Nutritional Approach to Preventive Cancer CareThe cancer hospital where my employee went offers complementary care, including the services of both a nutritionist and a naturopath—a rarity among any place in health care, let alone the cancer industry."And I embraced them,"
she said. "They told me to start exercising, and they furnished me with a wonderful anti-cancer dietthat includes fresh, organic vegetables and fruits that are loaded with antioxidants. They applauded me for restricting myself on refined sugars and flours. And they also told me to GIVE UP commercial meats altogether, because of the carcinogenic ways in which they're prepared. Basically, if the food comes in a can, box or package, I'm not supposed to eat it.Luckily, my husband is a hunter so our freezer is already full of wild meats such as elk, deer, turkey and hog. We have a lake house, so fresh fish is always available."
With the new diet, lifestyle changes, and exercise, the employee has lost over 25 pounds so far. She's also taking vitamins and supplements that include a maintenance dose of 5,000 IUs a day of vitamin D3, CoQ10, vitamin C, grape seed extract, turmeric, and vitamin B12, to name a few."And I'm living it,"
she said. "I feel better in all kinds of ways, and my lab work shows it. For example, at my last checkup, my vitamin D3 level was over 73—"a good number for cancer prevention" according to my oncologist."I love my new lifestyle, and my new way of eating. I've learned that many foods I'd never eaten before taste really good—the herb rosemary, for example, has a wonderful savory taste, and watercress and kale are full of flavor. I've learned how to snack too—a handful of walnuts is not only a cancer-fighter, but eaten with a glass of water, they can really fill you up. I'm never hungry, yet I'm losing weight a little at a time. And the best part is I'm cancer-free."
As she embarked on this diet, this employee got a surprise bonus."I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in 2000,"
she said. "But shortly after I started the grain-free, sugar-free, flour-free diet, something strange happened. I quit having aches and pains, and my fingers became unusually nimble. Then, when I went for my checkup at the rheumatologist's, something even stranger happened: my blood work showed no evidence of RA at all! Although he said there was no way to prove it, the rheumatologist acknowledged that it was entirely possible that the diet was the mitigating factor in my recovery. So now I don't need my prescription arthritis drug or even an over-the-counter pain medication. I can move and I'm pain-free. It's a miracle!"
Mammography is a Total Failure for Dense-Breasted WomenBesides the importance of diet and lifestyle in cancer prevention, my employee learned a lot of other things on her cancer journey. For example, she didn't know until recently that dense breasts have nothing to do with whether or not you've gained weight xi
."But they have everything to do with your risk of a mammogram giving a false positive, which can lead to a slew of tests like I had, that you don't actually need, or failing to identify a lump that is cancerous, like what happened to me,"
she said xii
Forty-nine percent of women have high breast tissue densityxiii
, and mammography's sensitivity for dense breasts is as low as 27 percentxiv
—meaning about 75 percent of dense-breasted women are at risk for a cancer being missed if they rely solely on mammography. Even with digital mammography, the sensitivity is still less than 60 percent.
The Final Diagnosis: Stay Cancer-Free with KnowledgeWhen my employee had her fateful 2008 experience, at least a dozen studies were already showing the association of breast density with breast cancer and the mistakes that mammography can make in both overdiagnosis and misdiagnosis in dense breastsxv
. She also didn't know there was a movement afoot by other women like her xvi
to force the FDA and state and federal governments to acknowledge mammography's failures, or that thousands of women like her were either being overdiagnosed and overtreated, or had their cancers missed because of itxviii
."Now I'm the first to shout that, instead of telling you to go get your mammogram in October—Breast Cancer Awareness Month—what they should be saying is, 'Are you aware that mammograms miss up to 75 percent of some women's cancers?'"
she says. "There was a lot I didn't know when this all started—but there also was a lot I did know, things that could have helped me stay cancer-free, but I wasn't doing. I know better now, and that's why I'm glad to share my story. The bottom line is to gather all the knowledge you can. Ask your doctor if you have dense breasts. Know your other risks for cancer, too—and do something about them! "Even more important, be aware that lots of times a whole slew of tests not only are unnecessary, but could be dangerous to your health."
I thank my researcher for sharing her story with you, and hope it may inspire you to take control of your health; to really get PROACTIVE rather than waiting for disease to set in before you get that wakeup call. Maybe you'll be given a second chance, like she was. Then again, maybe you won't. Little else matters once you're in a health crisis, so why not take the time NOW
to implement a few healthy lifestyle strategies that just might help you avoid getting ill in the first place.
Remember, the greatest enemy cancer has is a well-functioning immune system.
In the event that you are diagnosed with early stage breast cancer, always get a second opinion—and possibly a third and fourth. I cannot stress this enough, as false positive rates are just too high and the diagnostic criteria is too subjective. Before you make any decision about treatment, and definitely before you decide to have surgery or chemotherapy, make sure your biopsy results have been reviewed by a breast specialist who is knowledgeable and experienced in that field. The majority of breast cancer is preventable. But if you are hit with that diagnosis, don't lose hope! There is a great deal you can do to harness your body's own powerful healing abilities.
For a comprehensive guide to breast cancer prevention and treatment, please refer to this previous article, Breast Cancer Breakthrough - Cut Your Risk of Death in Half
- i Harvard School of Public Health April 5, 2012
- ii Harvard School of Public Health April 5, 2012
- iii ACR, SBI: Mammo Overdiagnosis Study Flawed. Diagnostic Imaging. April 4, 2012
- iv Possible Net Harms of Breast Cancer Screening: Updated Modeling of Forrest Report, British Medical Journal, December 8, 2011: 343; d7627, James Raftery and Maria Chorozoglou
- v X-ray Mammography: For Every Woman Whose Life is Prolonged 10 Women's Lives will be Shortened, i.e. "Treated Unnecessarily",Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, October 7, 2009: 2009(4); CD001877, Peter C. Gotzsche and Margrethe Nielsen
- vi How Cuts Can Spur Tumor Growth: Cancerous Cells Flock to Wounds, a Study Finds. ScienceNews. Feb. 15, 2011.
- vii Breast Cancer: Women with False Positive Mammograms at Higher Risk. ABC News, April 5, 2012.
- viii Can Trauma Cause or Accelerate the Growth of Cancer. Forensic Examiner. Fall 2004.
- ix Overweight and Obese Women at Greater Risk of Breast Cancer Recurrence. EurekAlert. March 23, 201.
- x Genomic Test Helps Hundreds of Quebec Women with Early-Stage Breast Cancer Avoid Chemotherapy by Personalizing Their Treatment. Canada NewsWire, March 201, 2012.
- xi Mammogram: Can It Find Cancer in Dense Breasts? Mayo Clinic, Aug. 2, 2011.
- xii Are Docs Overtreating Early Breast Cancer? New York Daily News, April 3, 2012.
- xiii Analysis of Parenchymal Density on Mammograms in 1353 Women 25-79 Years Old. American Journal of Roentgenology. November 1996.
- xiv Diagnostic Accuracy of Digital vs. Film Mammography: Exploratory Analysis of Selected Population Subgroups in DMIST. Radiology, Feb 2008.
- xv Quantitative Assessment of Mammographic Breast Density: Relationship with Breast Cancer Risk. Radiology. Jan 2004
- xvi Amy Colton: Proposed Mammogram Law Could Save Your Life. Santa Cruz Sentinel, June 5, 2011.
- xvii Are You Dense: Exposing the Best-Kept Secret. AreYouDense.org.
- xviii Prone to Error: Earliest Steps to Avoid Cancer. The New York Times. July 19, 2010.
Source: Harvard School of Public Health April 5, 2012Post your commentView Comments (74)Previous ArticleNext Article
The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Mercola, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Mercola and his community. Dr. Mercola encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.
Living in an area where hay fever allergies are fairly common, I have been getting allergy shots for 18 years. When I first started out getting my allergy shots, my doctor told me that the shots will taper off and I will not need them after a period of time when my body adjusts to it. When the dosage got higher, my body reacted so they scaled it back and I was put on a "maintenance level" meaning I was going to keep getting my allergy shots. Every week, I had to get them and I got 3 different types of shots for 18 years!! I wanted to be free of the shots but when I stopped it, I was miserable and could not function. I started researching on my own what an allergy is and what causes them. There is so much information about allergies but I was looking for something that I can do besides take antihistamines or cold medicines to control my runny nose.
According to one website, www.healingdaily.com, "In simple terms, an allergy is a hyperactive response of the immune system
to certain substances which are "foreign" to our bodies. These substances are called "allergens", and they can range from food and pollen to dust and drugs. Allergies are something we acquire throughout life, and some people are more susceptible than others.".
Even though, I've suffered from hay fever type allergies, I refused to believe that I'm doomed to suffer from it forever! I wanted to find a way to "heal" myself as I started to look at allergy as a symptom of something in my body that is out of balanced and needed healing. My research showed that nutrition plays a big role in allergies. Improving adrenal and digestive health along with meditation and reducing the stress in your life also helps. I have personally found prayers and a quiet time every morning extremely helpful in getting grounded and focused. I have also taken enzymes supplements to improve my "gut health" such as MasterZyme by New Sun and drinking green smoothies 3-4 times a week. (For green smoothie recipes, click on the Recipe Tab of www.bvibrantnow.com. I also increased my intake of "good fats" omega 3 fats using Garden of Life products found on our website or any health food store along with fresh berries with their antioxidant properties. Using natural sprays by New Sun for allergy, Allergy & Hay Fever Reliever, to control symptoms has helped me not use drugs and as my health improved, I have found that my allergy symptoms have also decreased. This year is the first year that I have not experience any allergy symptoms when everyone I know who has allergies have complained how miserable they feel. Check out these other websites for more information. We can take control of our health through good nutrition and healthy lifestyles!http://www.healingdaily.com/conditions/allergies.htm
**Please note that this is for educational purpose only and is not intended to treat or cure any illness.**
5 TIPS TO SURVIVE THE COLD/FLU SEASON
The Center for Disease Control refers to the period between November and March as the flu season since our chances of contracting a cold or flu increases by a whopping 80%. An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure as the saying goes. While the “common cold” has similar symptoms to the flu, the flu is a contagious respiratory illness that is caused by the influenza virus with more severe effects and potential complications such as pneumonia, infection, dehydration, and can lead the severe problems for people with asthma and diabetes. When you consider that every year roughly 200,000 people are hospitalized because of flu and its complications and the cause of death for approximately 36000 out of the 5-20% of the population that typically contracts the flu every year, the importance of taking preventive steps should be a priority especially if you have a chronic health problem.
The flu virus is most commonly transmitted in one of two ways: 1) by inhaling saliva particles from a sneeze or a cough from someone who is infected. That explains why they advise to cover your mouth or turn your face away from people when you sneeze or cough. 2) Through hand-to-hand (or hand-to-object) contact.
1. Since our hands is one of the major culprit, washing your hands thoroughly (20 second rule) with warm water and soap and use the paper tower to turn off the faucet and another paper towel to dry your hands and to open the door specially in public bathrooms is the first common sense tip. Keep your hands away from your face, mouth or your food. Use fork or spoon or a paper towel when eating your sandwich or finger foods. No matter how clean you think your hands are; they are breeding grounds for germs.
2. Specially during flu season, it is important to keep your household surfaces clean. Things that are handled by everybody such as telephones, computer keyboards, countertops, light switches, remote controls, and doorknobs are all great places for germs to hide.
3. Boost your immune systems through exercise and natural supplements such as ImmPower.
You increase the rate of oxygen to your lungs and your blood circulation when you do aerobic exercises and improves your immune system.
4. Drink plenty of water! Americans are notoriously dehydrated. The average adult needs to drink a minimum of eight, 8-ounce glasses a day to achieve the proper level of hydration and help flush various toxins from your body. A balanced and healthy diet is essential to ensure that your nutrition supports and maintains your health. Try one of our green smoothie recipe on our website to ensure that you get your fruits and greens!
5. Relax and get plenty of rest. Stress and fatigue can lower your immunity.
If you follow the basics that doctors follow to avoid colds or flu, you will find yourself surviving the flu season. Remember, eat right, sleep right, exercise and wash your hands!! Take natural supplements to boost your immune system like Vitamin C, ImmPower, etc.
I always like to get a massage as part of my health regimen specially when I started to get headaches due to a neck problem. I am a big believer that massage has health benefits in additon to the overall relaxation and wellness one feels in addition to moving toxins out of your system. I just recently read in the papers that there have been recent research findings that actually indicated beneficial measurable bodily changes in people after they got a massage such as:
1. A 2009 study of 30 participants showed that a full body massage boosted immune function and lowered heart rate and blood pressue in women with breast cancer undergoing radiation treatment.
2. A 45-minute massage let to a small reducton in cortisol levels (cortisol is a stress hormone), decrease in cytokine proteins related to inflammation and allergic reactions, and boost in white blood cells.
3. There are some initial evidence that massage can be used to treat pain specially back pain and osteoarthritis symptoms specially of the knee.
Now, I feel a lot better when I get a massage because I know that I'm simply not just pampering myself but also becoming healthier and achieve vibrancy!
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