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Health Newsletter - Spring '10

Prepared By Burdi Chiropractic & Massage; Dr. G. Burdi, D.C.
Celebrating 30+ Years Of "Light-Force" Adjusting, Physiotherapies & Wellness Care To Support YOUR Life-Style

Welcome to our health newsletter. It is meant to entertain, inform, and even inspire you to better health. Help others by sharing your thoughts and experience. They will thank you profusely.



Exercise Muscles With Weights - Live Science September 30, 2009, published an article that aging muscles need to be kept in shape regularly due to the danger of atrophy and development of scar tissue from inflammation. Atrophy is more challenging to overcome. Muscles need strength building exercise but it has to be done wisely for proper repair and atrophy recovery or prevention. Research found that younger muscle tissues have as much as four times more regenerative stem cells compared to old muscle. And after two weeks of immobilization  young muscles were only mildly affected, but old muscles began to atrophy and manifest signs of rapid tissue deterioration.

Other research has found that as we get older we also become increasingly less able to use the protein in food for building muscle. Protein is essential for a healthy muscle. Plus insulin no longer prevents the muscle breakdown between meals and overnight in sedentary people. This results in significant muscle wasting. Additionally the increasingly poor blood supply prevents proper delivery of nutrients and hormones to muscles. Fortunately, exercising with weights is a natural remedy for this problem as well with the added benefits of helping prevent heart disease and osteoporosis. The key to reducing risk of heart disease is to keep inflammation levels low. Regular exercise lowers the C-reactive protein (CRP) linked to inflammation and heart attacks. A great side effect to exercising is the reduction of visceral fat (around the abdomen and vital organs like liver, heart and muscles). The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn around the clock, even when you are resting or sleeping. So, with more muscle your body naturally increases the amount of calories burned each day, which reduces fat stores. 

Yet an additional benefit of weight-bearing exercise is reducing/preventing osteoporosis. If you are into taking drugs for this condition, keep in mind the long term harm they have to other parts of the body. Resistance training helps combat this disease by putting more tension on muscles causing more pressure on the bones, which then respond by creating fresh, new bone. Plus toned up muscles keeps this pressure on the bones, helping them further. The saying, "Use it or lose it." really is true.

Using the right mix of exercise is very important. Cardiovascular training is only one aspect of fitness. If you are able to move, you can find the right routine by incorporating strength training with weights. Start gently to prevent scarring and muscle inflammation, and work at a pace appropriate for age and level of fitness. Getting professional help from a properly educated doctor, personal trainer, or physical therapist is wise and safer if inexperienced or have not exercised in the last couple of years. Training muscles is a destructive and repair process so providing proper fuel helps to accommodate this  process. Ideally one should have a good protein drink/meal within 15 minutes of exercising. Keep in mind that optimal health evolves an active lifestyle, eating fresh, whole foods, avoiding processed foods, and reducing/handling life's stress. Ignoring any of these facts will eventually lead to a decline in health and any number of diseases.

I have personally experienced the benefits of proper weight training, even at the young age of 70 years old. So email me any questions on your intent, progress and goals. Go to this Health Tip link for other subjects.

Dog drinking from toilet

Coffee's Side Effects - Read an interesting article at Dr Mercola's website that highlights the consequences related to coffee drinking that should be considered. Surprisingly Americans drink 400 million cups of coffee every day, which adds up to over $4-billion worth of imported coffee each year. Unfortunately coffee consumption can lead to significant health side effects. Most notable is the exposure to pesticides. According to the CS Monitor, conventional farmers apply up to 250 pounds of chemical fertilizers per acre! It is widely know that pesticides contribute to a wide range of health problems, including prostate and other types of cancers, Parkinson’s disease, and miscarriages in pregnant women. Yes, sipping the morning coffee means sipping pesticide residues! Alternatively, organically grown coffee prevents exposure to  these pesticides. But increased cost to growers is leading to abandonment of such practices and the return to heavy use of pesticides. For example, Starbucks reports only 3 percent of its coffee purchases in 2009 were organic.

Realize that coffee containing caffeine means drinking a very powerful drug almost like drinking sofa containing high fructose corn syrup, both of which need to be limited or eliminated. Why? Because caffeine alters the brain,  causing changes in behavior and mood (sounds like alcohol/sugar effects). If you are especially sensitive to this drug the effects are even more pronounced, like rising blood pressure and stress hormone levels leading to adrenal exhaustion, heart palpitations, feeling jittery, nervous, anxious or panicky, and insomnia. Plus coffee increases risk of rheumatoid arthritisleukemia, stomach cancer, and stroke. It can raise cholesterol and insulin levels, damage blood vessels and body's metabolism, increase osteoporosis , and interfere in body's ability to use folate and vitamins B12 and B6, which are important in order to keep  homocysteine (an amino acid) levels in the healthy range. Elevated homocysteine levels are associated with a higher risk of coronary heart disease, stroke and peripheral vascular disease, and possibly an effect on atherosclerosis by damaging the inner lining of arteries and promoting blood clots

Additionally when adrenals no longer function effectively, the body searches for a replacement hormone like progesterone. Progesterone is there to to keep the body’s estrogen in balance. If progesterone is used up compensating for exhausted adrenals, one becomes estrogen dominant, leading to osteoporosis. Add to this the acidity effect of coffee greatly increases the risk of hip fractures.

Of course pregnant woman should avoid coffee completely. Two to three eight-ounce cups (300 mg of caffeine) increases the risk of miscarriage, delivering a low birth weight baby, or having one with birth defects like a cleft palate. Higher consumption may result in baby’s risk of SIDS. Remember caffeine passes easily through the placenta or breast milk to the child, who has no way to detoxify this drug.

If you must have your drink, use organic coffee which reduces exposure to toxic herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers. Try to go a few steps further - use a non-chemical based method of decaffeination, like the patented "Swiss Water Process"; avoid sugar/milk; and use unbleached filters (bright white ones are chlorine bleached resulting in chlorine being extracted during the brewing process).

OR switch to a high quality tea like Matcha, which is made of tea leaves ground into a powder, which gets added right into the water. By consuming the whole leaf, Matcha tea is said to be one of the healthiest green teas out there. Another is Tulsi tea, a powerful adaptogenic herb that provides important therapeutic benefits. The combination of antioxidants and phytochemicals found in tulsi can promote overall health by supporting the immune system, improving digestion/metabolism, increasing resistance to stress, maintaining healthy blood sugar and cholesterol levels, and providing  skeletal and joint support.

Remember, cultivating a healthy lifestyle will supply all the power needed to get through the day. In the transition at least switch over to an organic variety for the sake of better health and world environment. The lower pesticide exposure will help our children too!

Love Kisses

Candy Effects On Children - BBC News September 30, 2009 published a Cardiff University study reported in the British Journal of Psychiatry involving 17,500 people that found  that 10-year-olds who ate sweets daily were significantly more likely to have a violence conviction by age 34. Data showed that 69% had eaten sweets and chocolate nearly every day during childhood. Researchers suggested they had not learned to delay gratification, but other experts said already "difficult" children might be given more sweets. This link between confectionery consumption and later aggression remained even after controlling for other factors such as parenting behaviour, the area where the child lived, not having educational qualifications after the age of 16 and whether they had access to a car when they were 34.

Dr Simon Moore leading the study suggested that "Not being able to defer gratification may push them towards more impulsive behaviour, which is strongly associated with delinquency."

Professor Alan Maryon-Davis, president of the UK Faculty of Public Health, said: "Another explanation is that children who are already more demanding, aggressive and 'difficult' are more likely to be given sweets and chocolates to keep them quiet for a while.

Another plausible theory put forth is the possibility that candy can make one addicted to certain additives, which may contribute to aggressive behavior. Since many soda companies add salt, which increase thirst, and caffeine, which is a diuretic, causing urination to actually increase the desire for more soda. Of course the sugar in soda can have a very detrimental impact on mood. A 2004 study in same journal found that a higher dietary intake of refined sugar and dairy products predicted a worse 2-year outcome of schizophrenia.

It has been proven that sugar increases insulin levels, which can lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes, weight gain, premature aging, and many more negative side effects. Consumption also causes a rapid rise of adrenaline, which leads to hyperactivity, anxiety, and difficulty concentrating. With every rise there is a fall, leading to hypoglycemia causing brain to secrete glutamate in levels that can cause agitation, depression, anger, anxiety, panic attacks and an increase in suicide risk. A 1985 study published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology found that reducing sugar intake had a positive impact on emotions. In fact a 1983 study, Los Angeles Probation Department Diet-Behavior Program: Am Empirical Analysis of Six Institutional Settings, of  that 289 juveniles in the probation camps showed a 25 percent reduction in the incidence of antisocial behavior during the 9 months after the implementation of the revised diet low in sugar.

Let's conclude that moderation is important, and daily usage is not moderation. Of the 175 pounds per year of sugar the average American consumes, some doctors suggest maybe 5 pounds would more to the moderation level. Then there are the  artificial sweeteners and high fructose corn syrup found in sodas, juices, and process foods that need to be minimized. A child's health is important, right?

Balls lined up

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