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"Ever present, never twice the same.... Ever

changing, never less than whole...."

~Robert Irwin







Thursday, March 2, 2017

How necessary is that health treatment? Medication or surgery?


Very read worthy article. It is long, and gives food for thought. I've taken the liberty to cut and past a few paragraphs. Article link is at the bottom.


"When you visit a doctor, you probably assume the treatment you receive is backed by evidence from medical research. Surely, the drug you're prescribed or the surgery you'll undergo wouldn't be so common if it didn't work, right?"

"The health problems that most commonly afflict the American public are largely driven by lifestyle habits—smoking, poor nutrition, and lack of physical activity, among others. In November, a team led by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital pooled data from tens of thousands of people in four separate health studies from 1987 to 2008. They found that simple, moderate lifestyle changes dramatically reduced the risk of heart disease, the most prolific killer in the country, responsible for one in every four deaths. People deemed at high familial risk of heart disease cut their risk in half if they satisfied three of the following four criteria: didn't smoke (even if they smoked in the past); weren't obese (although they could be overweight); exercised once a week; ate more real food and less processed food. Fitting even two of those categories still substantially decreased risk. In August, a report issued by the International Agency for Research on Cancer concluded that obesity is now linked to an extraordinary variety of cancers, from thyroids and ovaries to livers and colons."

"The health problems that most commonly afflict the American public are largely driven by lifestyle habits—smoking, poor nutrition, and lack of physical activity, among others. In November, a team led by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital pooled data from tens of thousands of people in four separate health studies from 1987 to 2008. They found that simple, moderate lifestyle changes dramatically reduced the risk of heart disease, the most prolific killer in the country, responsible for one in every four deaths. People deemed at high familial risk of heart disease cut their risk in half if they satisfied three of the following four criteria: didn't smoke (even if they smoked in the past); weren't obese (although they could be overweight); exercised once a week; ate more real food and less processed food. Fitting even two of those categories still substantially decreased risk. In August, a report issued by the International Agency for Research on Cancer concluded that obesity is now linked to an extraordinary variety of cancers, from thyroids and ovaries to livers and colons."

"In1997, a Swedish hospital began a trial of more than 9,000 patients with high blood pressure who were randomly assigned to take either atenolol or a competitor drug that was designed to lower blood pressure for at least four years. The competitor-drug group had fewer deaths (204) than the atenolol group (234) and fewer strokes (232 compared with 309). But the study also found that both drugs lowered blood pressure by the exact same amount, so why wasn't the vaunted atenolol saving more people? That odd result prompted a subsequent study, which compared atenolol with sugar pills. It found that atenolol didn't prevent heart attacks or extend life at all; it just lowered blood pressure. A 2004 analysis of clinical trials—including eight randomized controlled trials comprising more than 24,000 patients—concluded that atenolol did not reduce heart attacks or deaths compared with using no treatment whatsoever; patients on atenolol just had better blood-pressure numbers when they died."

"In the late 1980s, with evidence already mounting that forcing open blood vessels was less effective and more dangerous than noninvasive treatments, cardiologist Eric Topol coined the term, "oculostenotic reflex." Oculo, from the Latin for "eye," and stenotic, from the Greek for "narrow," as in a narrowed artery. The meaning: If you see a blockage, you'll reflexively fix a blockage. Topol described "what appears to be an irresistible temptation among some invasive cardiologists" to place a stent any time they see a narrowed artery, evidence from thousands of patients in randomized trials be damned. Stenting is what scientists call "bio-plausible"—intuition suggests it should work. It's just that the human body is a little more Book of Job and a little less household plumbing: Humans didn't invent it, it's really complicated, and people often have remarkably little insight into cause and effect."

"Consider the knee, that most bedeviling of joints. A procedure known as arthroscopic partial meniscectomy, or APM, accounts for roughly a half-million procedures per year at a cost of around $4 billion. A meniscus is a crescent-shaped piece of fibrous cartilage that helps stabilize and provide cushioning for the knee joint. As people age, they often suffer tears in the meniscus that are not from any acute injury. APM is meant to relieve knee pain by cleaning out damaged pieces of a meniscus and shaving the cartilage back to crescent form. This is not a fringe surgery; in recent years, it has been one of the most popular surgical procedures in the hemisphere. And a burgeoning body of evidence says that it does not work for the most common varieties of knee pain."


"The health problems that most commonly afflict the American public are largely driven by lifestyle habits—smoking, poor nutrition, and lack of physical activity, among others. In November, a team led by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital pooled data from tens of thousands of people in four separate health studies from 1987 to 2008. They found that simple, moderate lifestyle changes dramatically reduced the risk of heart disease, the most prolific killer in the country, responsible for one in every four deaths. People deemed at high familial risk of heart disease cut their risk in half if they satisfied three of the following four criteria: didn't smoke (even if they smoked in the past); weren't obese (although they could be overweight); exercised once a week; ate more real food and less processed food. Fitting even two of those categories still substantially decreased risk. In August, a report issued by the International Agency for Research on Cancer concluded that obesity is now linked to an extraordinary variety of cancers, from thyroids and ovaries to livers and colons."

https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2017/02/when-evidence-says-no-but-doctors-say-yes/517368/?utm_source=atlfb

Monday, June 27, 2016

Nature's bounty!!

I was waylaid yesterday by these! Right on my property so of course I gathered some and devoured them. Nature and the earth has so much to offer us if we are open to receiving. I think it's time I spruce up my foraging skills and knowledge!

Friday, February 5, 2016

Mindful eating.

Earlier this week I was speaking with a friend/mentor of mine and she spoke of a fairly new practice for her. Eating mindfully. Meaning. "BE-ing" with your food. No distractions, unplugging from television, cell phones, electronics, and books.

How often do we allow ourselves to simply "be" while taking in nourishment? I know, for myself, I'm usually reading a book/article, watching a show, and/or on my electronic device (laptop/tablet/iPhone), often on social media. I cannot think of a time I simply dined by myself without some form of electronic or reading material.

I found this interesting and decided to give it a go today. I mean, how hard could it be, right?!? I was solo in a local cafe, upon receiving my food, I took the included photo, then mad a cognizant effort to simply be with my meal and observe anything that bubbled up and the diners around me.

It was a different experience for me. After thanking my food and beverage, I commenced to eating with the exercise in mind.

I noticed that a few times it took effort to NOT pick up my iPhone. As thoughts came to my mind, I chose to sit with them and pay attention to how that felt, there was a slight nagging in those moments to pick up my phone, share via text or Facebook my experience. It was an awakening of sorts of how "dependent" and "attached" I'd become to my phone and my practiced way of being, a push to read something, or text my friends.

I made note of my meal, the texture, and taste and as time passed the nagging in my head became less urgent and "loud."
It was definitely still there though.

Very interesting observation about myself, and now intend to make this a regular practice.

Mindful eating. I'm curious to see what will transpire as I begin to do this more often.