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Sunday, February 22, 2009

What is Steroid Cream ?

[Extracted from Wisegeek]

(The next time you visit a so-called skin specialist or a dermatologist, always take the trouble to ask the type of cream they gave to you, for your type of skin problems).

Steroid cream is a topical cream which is blended with steroids to treat skin problems. Steroid creams are used to treat a variety of conditions, and they are available in both prescription and over the counter versions. Most commonly, steroid cream is recommended to treat a skin condition like eczema or a rash, with the steroids targeting the problem directly, as opposed to oral steroids, which must work their way through the body to the site.

The strength of a steroid cream depends both on the concentration of steroids used, and on the carrier oils used in the cream. Some oils encourage absorption, leading the skin to take up most of the steroids in the cream, while others may be less effective, causing the steroids to rub off, rather than entering the site. There are also several different types of steroids which can be used in a steroid cream to address specific issues.

Like other steroid products, steroid creams are meant for short term use, to address a specific problem. Steroids have a number of side effects, especially if used for an extensive period of time, and steroid creams can cause things like skin thinning, stretch marks, and discoloration. If a skin condition does not respond to steroids, the situation needs to be re-evaluated to determine the best course of action. Some studies have also linked a high use of steroid cream and steroids in general to cancer.

Steroids can ease itching, burning, and inflammation. Many skin conditions cause all of these symptoms, along with scaly skin and cracking. Using a steroid cream can target the cause of the skin condition, while also soothing the symptoms, to decrease healing time and increase patient comfort. Patients with eczema, for example, can use steroid cream to promote healing and to reduce the amount of itching to cut down on scratching which can make the problem even worse.

If a steroid cream is purchased over the counter, the package should disclose the steroid used, and the strength, such as one percent hydrocortisone cream. Generally, the cream should not be used for more than a week, unless a doctor has specifically recommended an over the counter product for extended use. If the condition does not respond or grows worse, the over the counter cream should be discontinued, and an appointment should be made with a dermatologist, who can examine the site and prescribe a different medication or course of treatment.

What is Lumbago ?

[Extracted from Wisegeek]

Lumbago is an umbrella term for lower back pain, which can be caused by a variety of issues from sudden strain to tumors. There are a number of treatments for lumbago, depending on the root cause, including surgical options for very severe cases. Low back pain affects many people at some point during their lives, and it is a frequently cited cause for missed work. Because the causes for lumbago vary, it is important to see a doctor if you have any type of back pain, to ensure that the cause is properly diagnosed so that you get the right treatment.

The most obvious symptom of lumbago is, of course, lower back pain which may radiate into the upper legs. Patients may also experience stiffness in their lower backs, especially when rising in the morning, along with painful muscle spasms in the lower back. A tingling sensation in the lower legs and feet sometimes accompanies lumbago as well, and patients may develop a spinal curvature as their bodies respond to the pain.

Strain is a common cause of lower back pain; a common cause of strain is an activity like heavy lifting without proper support. Lumbago can also be caused by arthritis, osteoporosis, scoliosis, tumors, and herniated discs, among other things. A doctor will be able to diagnose the condition and determine the underlying cause with the assistance of diagnostic tools. In addition to a physical examination, a doctor may use diagnostic equipment like x-ray and MRI machines to visualize the spine in an attempt to find the source of the lumbago.

There are an assortment of nonsurgical treatments for lumbago, including exercise and gentle stretches for the back, anti-inflammatories and painkillers to ease the swelling and pain associated with the condition, and the use of antidepressants to treat the mental discomfort which sometimes accompanies back pain. Some doctors also recommend spinal manipulation or massage to ease lumbago, along with treatments like acupuncture. Application of hot or cold compresses can sometimes help as well.

In some cases, the condition may require surgery. This is often true of lumbago caused by damage to the spine, or chronic lumbago which keeps recurring. Surgical options vary depending on the cause of the lower back pain, and surgeons usually discuss the available choices carefully with their patients. Surgery can restore the integrity of the spine, ideally while preserving the patient's mobility and flexibility.

Main causes of Back Pain

Back pain can be frustrating, and also potentially very dangerous if it is not treated. There are a number of different causes for back pain, some of which can be avoided. In many cases, back pain will resolve after several days of rest and gentle treatment, although this is not guaranteed. If you are experiencing extreme or prolonged back pain, you should consult a doctor immediately.

One of the leading causes of back pain is strain. Improper body mechanics, posture, and lifting practices can lead to strain, especially in the lumbar or lower back. A ruptured or herniated disc can also cause back pain, as will a slipped disc. Elderly individuals may be at risk of arthritis and osteoporosis, both of which can cause back pain. In addition, older people are more prone to spinal stenosis, a tightening of the spinal canal. Some infections and inflammations can result in back pain as well. Severe trauma such as falls and car accidents is another source of back pain.

For simple back pain, rest is sometimes the best cure. Applications of ice and heat may also help, as will some topical rubs. For more extreme back pain, surgery, medication, and physical therapy may be in order. A doctor will decide on the best course of treatment to pursue once he or she has determined what is causing the back pain. Sometimes, this may require an exhausting round of tests, since the spine is very complex and the reason behind back pain is not always readily apparent, especially when the patient has limited information.

Several things can help patients avoid back pain. For people in positions which require lifting, proper training should be received on how to lift and handle material. Appropriate braces may need to be worn as well to support the back. Regular exercise and a healthy diet to keep the spine strong and flexible are also useful. Some doctors may recommend regular massage or physical therapy as well, to help patients keep fit.

By taking good care of your body, you may be able to avoid back pain, especially serious back pain. If you experience a mild case of back pain, rest in bed and try to minimize strain on your back. Prolonged or intense pain is a sign that you need to see a doctor, as is numbness or tingling in the extremities. Do not hesitate to seek professional attention for back pain, since it is better to be safe than sorry.

What is the Chiropractor Doing When He is Cracking My Neck ?

[Extracted from Wisegeek]

When the chiropractor is cracking your neck, no bones are actually being cracked at all. Rather, the cracking sound is made when air is released from the cushioning material between your vertebrae as your spinal column is being twisted. This protective padding material keeps your vertebrae from rubbing together and actually cracking.

Cervical spinal manipulation, spinal manipulative therapy or spinal adjustments are some of the clinical terms used to refer to neck cracking as many lay people call it. When the chiropractor is cracking your neck, he or she is actually adjusting segments of your spine to relieve stress in your spinal column. The stress is relieved as the spine becomes realigned.

Chiropractors have different schools of thought about exactly how hard a person's neck should be twisted to relieve stress and align the spine. Serious damage such as a stroke is thought to be a risk if the twisting that is a part of cracking your neck is too aggressive. The brain and the spinal cord are interconnected, so neurological harm to the body may result if the spinal column is severely damaged.

Chiropractors are trained to understand the entire spinal column as well as the neck and most would probably not want to use harsh, strong movements when cracking your neck. However, it is a good idea to be aware of your chiropractor's philosophy on this. The Network Spinal Analysis (NSA) system, for example, is one of the chiropractic care systems said to use gentle, subtle movements on the spine.

People may want to have their spines adjusted for many different reasons. Spinal misalignment may simply be caused by stress or by trauma to the spine such as from an accident. Some people just experience chronic neck or back pain and the discomfort may be caused either by too much movement or not enough movement in the affected area. Although cracking your neck is a common reaction to sleeping in a position that caused spinal misalignment, a chiropractor should really be the one to perform spinal adjustments to prevent any damage to the body.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

What is Pap Smear ?

[Extracted from eMedicine Health]

Cancer of the cervix (cervical cancer) is the second most common cause of cancer-related disease and death among women worldwide. The best way to detect cervical cancer is by having regular Papanicolaou tests, or Pap smears. (Pap is a shortened version of the name of the doctor who developed the screening test.) A Pap smear is a microscopic examination of cells taken from the cervix.

A Pap smear can detect certain viral infections (such as human papillomavirus [HPV]) and other cancer-causing conditions. Early treatment of these conditions can stop cervical cancer before it fully develops. A woman may have cervical cancer and not know it because she may not have any symptoms.

The incidence of cancer and deaths from cervical cancer has significantly declined over the years because of prevention, screening, and early detection by the Pap smear. In the United States, about 2-3 million abnormal Pap smear results are found each year. Most of them indicate the early stages of disease and need reasonable observation by a doctor.

a) Risks factors for cancer of the cervix include the following :

i) Multiple sexual partners (or sexual partners who have had multiple partners)

ii) Starting sexual intercourse at an early age

iii) Viral infection, such as HPV, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), or herpes simplex virus (HSV)

iv) Weakened immune system

v) Previous cancer of the lower genital tract

vi) Smoking

Cervical cancer screening is recommended yearly starting when women are aged 18 years, or when they become sexually active if younger than 18 years. Physicians may screen a woman less frequently if she had negative Pap smear results 3 years in a row or is not sexually active.

No upper age limit for screening exists because the incidence of cancer of the cervix increases with age at a time when women may be less likely to get a Pap smear. Diagnosis of most of these cancers is in women older than 50 years. Even after menopause, a woman should continue to have regular Pap smears.

b) The National Cancer Institute encourages women aged 65 years and older to get a Pap smear at least every 2 years (Medicare covers the cost), and every year if they are at higher risk and advised by their doctor. Many older women believe they no longer need Pap smears (and think they are not at risk for cervical cancer) because of their age, because they may not be sexually active, or because they have had a hysterectomy. That is not correct. These women need Pap smears because their risk is higher.

If a woman has had her uterus removed, she should still have yearly screening if there is a history of abnormal Pap smear results or other lower genital tract cancer.

Pap Smear Preparation

The best time to have a Pap smear is when the woman is not menstruating. A woman could ask for a female doctor if that would make her feel more comfortable.

For 2 days before the test, avoid the following because these might hide any abnormal cells :

** Intercourse
** Douches
** Vaginal medications (except as directed by your doctor)
** Vaginal contraceptives such as birth control foams, creams, or jellies

A Pap smear is usually part of a pelvic exam and accompanied by a breast exam performed by the health care provider. It should only take about 1 minute to perform a Pap smear during this overall exam.

a) The woman will lie on the examination table on her back with her knees up and bent and her feet in stirrups (rests). While she is lying on an examination table, her health care provider will use a small metal or plastic instrument called a speculum to open the vagina so that the walls of the vagina and cervix can be seen clearly.

b) A sample of mucus and cells will be obtained from the cervix (the part of the uterus that extends into the vagina) and endocervix (the opening of the cervix) using a wooden scraper or a small cervical brush or broom.

c) The sample of cells is evenly applied to a glass slide and sprayed with a fixative. This sample is sent to the lab for close and careful examination under a microscope. If the doctor is using a new kind of Pap smear called a ThinPrep test, the sample is rinsed into a vial and sent to a lab for slide preparation and examination.

d) A cytologist (a specialist trained to look at the cells and interpret a Pap smear) reviews both types of tests.

e) Some discomfort during the test may occur. Most women feel nothing at all or feel pressure. Staying relaxed will help stop any discomfort. The woman should breathe slowly and concentrate on relaxing her stomach and legs.

f) A Pap smear should not be painful. If experiencing pain during the test, the woman should tell her doctor.

After the Procedure
The health care provider sends a letter with test results. If there is a problem, the woman's provider may contact her. For peace of mind, she can also call the clinic to get the results. Before leaving after the exam, she can ask how long it takes the office to receive the lab report.

A negative or normal test finding means that the cervix looks healthy. All the cells are of a healthy size and shape.

A positive or abnormal test finding means that something unusual is in the sample. The test found cells of a different size and shape.

1) An abnormal Pap smear result does not always indicate cancer. Cells sometimes appear abnormal but are not cancerous. The woman will have to return to the clinic for follow-up care.

2) Remember that abnormal conditions do not always become cancerous, and some conditions are more of a threat than others.

3) An infection of the cervix may cause a positive test result. A yeast, trichomonas, chlamydial, or gonorrheal infection can cause the cervical cells to appear inflamed. After the infection is treated, the Pap smear result usually returns to normal.

4) Human papillomavirus (HPV) can also cause a test result to be positive. This virus may exist on the cervix or in the vagina and causes genital warts. Many types of HPV have been identified, and some are associated with cervical cancer. If the woman has HPV, she has a higher risk of developing cervical cancer.

5) The smear result may be positive because it shows changes that may become cervical cancer.

6) If a woman has an abnormal Pap smear result, a repeat test should be done every 4-6 months for 2 years until 3 consecutive negative tests have been obtained.

7) If the Pap smear result is positive because of an infection, the underlying cause should be treated. The test should then be repeated in 2-3 months, because cancer of the cervix can be hidden by an infection. A check-up with a doctor is necessary.

8) Although the Pap smear is the best method of detecting cervical cancer early, it is not perfect. Because even the best labs can miss some cell changes, a woman should have the test performed yearly, as the American Cancer Society recommends.

9) Recently, 2 computerized systems (PAPNET and AutoPap) have been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration to detect abnormal cells from a Pap smear. To ensure accuracy of the test, they use computer technology to recheck Pap smears for abnormal cells the technician may have missed. These tests cost more than a normal Pap smear, but they can be helpful if the woman is at high risk for cervical cancer. Consult a doctor about these methods.

Most laboratories in the United States use a standard set of terms called the Bethesda System to report, or interpret, test results. Under the Bethesda System, Pap smear samples that have no cell abnormalities are reported as "negative for intraepithelial lesion or malignancy" (meaning the woman does not have cancer).

Samples with cell abnormalities fall into the following categories (as outlined by the National Cancer Institute) :

a) ASC (atypical squamous cells): Squamous cells are the thin, flat cells that form the surface of the cervix. The Bethesda System divides this category into the following 2 groups :

i) ASC-US (atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance): The squamous cells do not appear completely normal, but doctors are uncertain what the cell changes mean. Sometimes the changes are related to HPV infection. ACS-US are considered mild abnormalities.

ii) ASC-H (atypical squamous cells cannot exclude a high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion): The cells do not appear normal, but doctors are uncertain what the cell changes mean. ASC-H may be at higher risk of being precancerous.

b) AGC (atypical glandular cells): Glandular cells are mucus-producing cells found in the endocervical canal (opening in the center of the cervix) or in the lining of the uterus. The glandular cells do not appear normal, but doctors are uncertain what the cell changes mean.

c) AIS (endocervical adenocarcinoma in situ): Precancerous cells found in the glandular tissue.

d) LSIL (low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion): Low-grade means there are early changes in the size and shape of cells. The word lesion refers to an area of abnormal tissue. Intraepithelial refers to the layer of cells that forms the surface of the cervix. LSILs are considered mild abnormalities caused by HPV infection.

e) HSIL (high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion): High-grade means that there are more marked changes in the size and shape of the abnormal (precancerous) cells, meaning the cells look very different from normal cells. HSILs are more severe abnormalities and have a higher likelihood of progressing to invasive cancer.

When to Seek Medical Care
Early cervical precancers and cancer often have no signs or symptoms. Therefore, it is important to have regular Pap smears. Symptoms usually appear when the cancer has progressed.

The following symptoms must be reported to a health care provider right away :

* Unusual vaginal discharge
* Blood spots or light bleeding other than a normal period
* Bleeding or pain during sex

These symptoms do not conclude that someone has cancer. Other conditions may cause these symptoms, but a check-up is necessary to determine the cause.

What is Vertigo ?

[Extracted from eMedicine Health]

Vertigo is the feeling that you or your environment is moving or spinning. It differs from dizziness in that vertigo describes an illusion of movement. When you feel as if you yourself are moving, it's called subjective vertigo, and the perception that your surroundings are moving is called objective vertigo.

Unlike nonspecific lightheadedness or dizziness, vertigo has relatively few causes.

Vertigo can be caused by problems in the brain or the inner ear.

a) Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is the most common form of vertigo and is characterized by the sensation of motion initiated by sudden head movements or moving the head in a certain direction. This type of vertigo is rarely serious and can be treated.

b) Vertigo may also be caused by inflammation within the inner ear (labyrinthitis), which is characterized by the sudden onset of vertigo and may be associated with hearing loss. The most common cause of labyrinthitis is a viral or bacterial infection.

c) Meniere's disease is composed of a triad of symptoms: episodes of vertigo, ringing in the ears, and hearing loss. People have the abrupt onset of severe vertigo, fluctuating hearing loss, as well as periods in which they are symptom-free.

d) Acoustic neuroma is a type of tumor that can cause vertigo. Symptoms include vertigo with one-sided ringing in the ear and hearing loss.

e) Vertigo can be caused by decreased blood flow to the base of the brain. Bleeding into the back of the brain (cerebellar hemorrhage) is characterized by vertigo, headache, difficulty walking, and inability to look toward the side of the bleed. The result is that the person's eyes gaze away from the side with the problem. Walking is also extremely impaired.

f) Vertigo is often the presenting symptom in multiple sclerosis. The onset is usually abrupt, and examination of the eyes may reveal the inability of the eyes to move past the midline toward the nose.

g) Head trauma and neck injury may also result in vertigo, which usually goes away on its own.

h) Migraine, a severe form of headache, may also cause vertigo. The vertigo is usually followed by a headache. There is often a prior history of similar episodes but no lasting problems.

Vertigo implies that there is a sensation of motion either of the person or the environment. This should not be confused with symptoms of lightheadedness or fainting.

1) If true vertigo exists, there is a sensation of disorientation or motion. In addition, the patient may also have any or all of these symptoms :

** Nausea or vomiting
** Sweating
** Abnormal eye movements

2) The duration of symptoms can be from minutes to hours, and symptoms can be constant or episodic. The onset may be due to a movement or change in position. It is important to tell the doctor about any recent head trauma or whiplash injury as well as any new medications the patient is taking.

3) The patient may have hearing loss and a ringing sensation in the ears.

4) The patient might have visual disturbances, weakness, difficulty speaking, decreased level of consciousness, and difficulty walking.

Certain signs and symptoms of vertigo may require evaluation in a hospital's emergency department :

i) Double vision

ii) Headache

iii) Weakness

iv) Difficulty speaking

v) Abnormal eye movements

vi) Altered level of consciousness, not acting appropriately, or difficulty arousing

(vii) Difficulty walking or controlling the arms and legs

Exams and Tests
The evaluation of vertigo consists primarily of a medical history and physical exam.

The history is comprised of four basic areas :

1) The doctor may want to know if the patient feels any sensation of motion, which may indicate that true vertigo exists. Report any nausea, vomiting, sweating, and abnormal eye movements.

2) The doctor may ask how long the patient has symptoms and whether they are constant or come and go. Do the symptoms occur when moving or changing positions? Is the patient currently taking any new medications? Has there been any recent head trauma or whiplash injury?

3) Are there any other hearing symptoms? Specifically, report any ringing in the ears or hearing loss.

4) Does the patient have weakness, visual disturbances, altered level of consciousness, difficulty walking, abnormal eye movements, or difficulty speaking ?

The doctor may perform tests such as a CT scan if a brain injury is suspected to be the cause of vertigo.

Blood tests to check blood sugar levels and the use of an electrocardiogram (ECG) to look at heart rhythm may also be helpful.

Medical Treatment
The choice of treatment will depend on the diagnosis.

a) Vertigo can be treated with medicine taken by mouth, through medicine placed on the skin (a patch), or drugs given through an IV.

b) Specific types of vertigo may require additional treatment and referral :

i) Bacterial infection of the middle ear requires antibiotics.

ii) For Meniere's disease, in addition to symptomatic treatment, people might be placed on a low salt diet and may require medication used to increase urine output.

iii) A hole in the inner ear causing recurrent infection may require referral to an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialist for surgery.

c) In addition to the drugs used for benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, several physical maneuvers can be used to treat the condition.

** Vestibular rehabilitation exercises consist of having the patient sit on the edge of a table and lie down to one side until the vertigo resolves followed by sitting up and lying down on the other side, again until the vertigo ceases. This is repeated until the vertigo no longer occurs.

** Particle repositioning maneuver is a treatment based on the idea that the condition is caused by displacement of small stones in the balance center (vestibular system) of the inner ear. The head is repositioned to move the stones to their normal position. This maneuver is repeated until the abnormal eye movements are no longer visible.

Commonly prescribed medications for vertigo include the following :

1) meclizine hydrochloride (Antivert)
2) diphenhydramine (Benadryl)
3) scopolamine transdermal patch (Transderm-Scop)
4) promethazine hydrochloride (Phenergan)
5) diazepam (Valium)

These medications should be taken only as directed and under the supervision of a doctor.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Excess Protein is Hazardous to Your Health and Fitness

[Dr. Leslie Van Romer is the author of weight-loss, body-best book]

Wait a minute ! We know that fat and cholesterol are hazardous to our health. You mean to tell me that too much protein is also hazardous to our health ?

Yes, absolutely ! That is exactly what I am saying. I know that this may come as a complete surprise to you, but the truth is that many experts think that too much protein, particularly animal protein, is hazardous to your health !

If a person consumes over 15% protein in his diet (beef typically has 26% protein – the rest is fat – and chicken has 61% protein – the rest is fat), then the body must get rid of that protein.

In other words, the body stores very little protein. Certain organs are responsible for getting rid of the protein—namely the kidneys and liver. The more protein we eat, the harder the kidneys and liver have to work to excrete the protein. The result of overuse of these organs is obvious—premature wear and tear.

Most Americans eat an over-abundance of animal protein from their foods every day, and then they load themselves up even more with protein powders and drinks and bars. We are protein crazy in this country! And it is to our demise, not to our benefit.

So along with the wear and tear of the kidneys and the liver which is bad enough, why else is excess animal protein hazardous to your health ?

Excess protein makes the body more acidic, and these acids accumulate in the joints causing arthritis and gout.

Animal protein is hard to digest so it is hard on the digestive system causing digestive problems.

Animal protein is strongly associated with heart disease; no, not just the fat and cholesterol, but also the animal protein itself.

Animal protein is associated with many kinds of cancers, such as breast cancer, prostate cancer, colon cancer, and pancreatic cancer.

In a huge study conducted in China by T. Colin Campbell, PhD., it was found that the groups of people who ate the most animal protein had, by far, the most heart disease and certain cancers. And the amount of animal protein did not have to go up very high in order for the disease numbers to go up also.

And because the animal protein makes the body more acidic, the body has to neutralize the acid. It does so by pulling calcium out of the bones, and then we pee out the calcium.

Why is this significant ?

It is believed that animal protein just happens to be one of the major contributors to osteoporosis in this country. This excess protein leaches the calcium out of our bones.

So one of the best things you can do for yourself is to cut back, way back, on your consumption of meat protein and protein artificially loaded into other foods and pseudo-foods. In fact, your best bet for maximum health and fitness is to completely eliminate animal sources of protein.

Load up on plant foods and get away from animal products—it just makes sense !

what is Cleft Lip and Palate ?

[Extracted from The Free Dictionary]

A cleft is a birth defect that occurs when the tissues of the lip and/or palate of the fetus do not fuse very early in pregnancy. A cleft lip, sometimes referred to as a harelip, is an opening in the upper lip that can extend into the base of the nostril. A cleft palate is an opening in the roof of the mouth.

Babies born with cleft lips will have an opening involving the upper lip. The length of the opening ranges from a small notch, to a cleft that extends into the base of the nostril. Cleft lips may involve one or both sides of the lip.

Babies born with cleft palates have openings in the palate, which is the roof of the mouth. The size and position of the opening varies. The cleft may be only in the hard palate, the bony portion of the roof of the mouth, opening into the floor of the nose. It may be only in the soft palate, the soft portion of the roof of the mouth. The cleft palate may involve both the hard and soft palate and may occur on both sides of the center of the palate.

Babies may have cleft lips with or without cleft palates. Cleft palates may also occur without cleft lips.

The incidence of cleft lip and palate not associated with a syndrome is one in 700 newborns. Native Americans have an incidence of 3.6 in 1,000 newborns. The incidence among Japanese newborns is 2.1 in 1,000. The incidence among whites is one in 1,000 newborns. African Americans have an incidence of 0.3 in 1,000 newborns.
Causes and symptoms

Cleft lips and palates not associated with a syndrome are caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Inheritance caused by such a combination is called multifactorial. The embryo inherits genes that increase the risk for cleft lip and/or palate. When an embryo with such genes is exposed to certain environmental factors the embryo develops a cleft.

The risk of a baby being born with a cleft lip or palate increases with the number of affected relatives and the number of relatives that have more severe clefts.
Environmental factors that increase the risk of cleft lip and palate include cigarette and alcohol use during pregnancy. Some drugs, such as phenytoin, sodium valproate, and methotrexate, also increase the incidence of clefting. The pregnant mother's nutrition may affect the incidence of clefting as well.

Babies born with a cleft lip will be seen to have an elongated opening in the upper lip. The size of this opening may range from a small notch in the upper lip to an opening that extends into the base of the nostril. The cleft lip may be below the right or left nostril or below both nostrils.

Babies born with a cleft palate will be seen to have an opening into the roof of the mouth. The size and position of the cleft varies and it may involve only the hard palate, or only the soft palate and may occur on both sides of the center of the palate.

In some cases the cleft palate will be covered with the normal lining of the mouth and can only be felt by the examiner.

Babies with cleft lips and palates have feeding difficulties, which are more severe in babies with cleft palates. The difficulty in feeding is due to the baby being unable to achieve complete suction. In the case of clefts of the hard palate, liquids enter the nose from the mouth through the opening in the hard palate.
A cleft palate also affects a child's speech, since the palate is necessary for speech formation. The child's speech pattern may still be affected despite surgical repair.

Ear infections are more common in babies born with cleft palates. The infections occur because the muscles of the palate do not open the Eustachian tubes that drain the middle ear. This allows fluid to collect and increases the risk of infection and hearing loss.

Teeth may also erupt misaligned.

Cleft lip and palate can be diagnosed before birth by ultrasound. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) offers more accuracy for detecting cleft lip and palate, as it is a more detailed imaging method. It is particularly helpful in showing soft palate defects. In 2004, researchers reported discovery of a gene test for isolated cleft lip and cleft palate to help predict if parents who have one child with the isolated form of cleft lip or palate were likely to have a second child with the same defect. After birth, cleft lip and palate are diagnosed by physical exam.


If cleft lip and/or palate are diagnosed by ultrasound before birth, further testing may be required to diagnose associated abnormalities if present. Referral to a cleft team is essential. A cleft team consists of specialists in the management of babies with clefts and includes surgeons as well as nurses and speech therapists. Members of the team inform the parents of all aspects of management. Feeding methods are also discussed, since feeding is the first problem that must be dealt with. It may be possible to breastfeed a baby born with only a cleft lip, but babies born with cleft palates usually have more problems with feeding and frequently require special bottles and teats. A palatal obturator is a device that fits into the roof of the mouth, thus blocking the cleft opening and allowing easier suckling.

Surgery to repair cleft lips is sometimes performed after orthodontic treatment to narrow the gap in the upper lip. The orthodontic treatment can involve acrylic splints with or without screws or may involve the use of adhesive tape placed across the gap in the lip. The orthodontic treatment for cleft lip should be started within the first three weeks of life and continue until the cleft lip is repaired.

The timing of surgical cleft lip repair depends on the judgment of the surgeon who will perform the operation. The procedure is usually performed between one and three months of age. The goals of the operation are to close the gap in the upper lip, place scars in the natural skin curves and to repair muscle so that the lip appears normal during movement. The closure is done in the three layers (skin, muscle, and mucosa) that line the inside of the lip. At the time of the procedure, if the nose is shaped abnormally due to the cleft lip, it is also corrected. Sometimes further surgery may be needed on the lip and/or nose to refine the result.

The goals of the surgeon repairing a cleft palate are normal speech, normal facial growth, and hearing for the affected infant. The repair of the cleft palate is usually performed between three and 18 months of age. The timing may extend beyond this and varies with the type of cleft palate and center where the procedure is being performed. Depending of the type of cleft palate, more than one operation may be needed to close the cleft and improve speech.

Nonsurgical treatment of a cleft palate is available for patients who are at high risk for surgery and consists of a prosthetic appliance worn to block the opening in the palate.

Babies born with cleft palates are vulnerable to ear infections. Their Eustachian tubes do not effectively drain fluid from the middle ear so fluid accumulates and infection sets in. This may lead to hearing loss. These children require drainage tubes to be inserted to prevent fluid accumulation.
Babies born with clefts usually require orthodontic treatment between 13 and 18 years of age. They also require speech therapy.

Babies born with cleft lip and palate have a good prognosis, and approximately 80% will develop normal speech. There is no known means of preventing clefting. Good prenatal care is essential and avoiding harmful substances appear to reduce the risk.

Functions of Electrolytes & Minerals in the Body

[Extracted from The Merck Manuals]

Minerals are necessary for the normal functioning of the body's cells. The body needs large quantities of calcium, chloride, magnesium, phosphate, potassium, and sodium. These minerals are called macrominerals. Bone, muscle, heart, and brain function depends on these minerals. The body needs small quantities of chromium, copper, fluoride, iodine, iron, manganese, molybdenum, selenium, and zinc. These minerals are called trace minerals. Except for chromium, all trace minerals are incorporated into enzymes or hormones required in body processes (metabolism). Chromium helps the body keep blood sugar levels normal. All trace minerals are harmful if too much is ingested.

Minerals are an essential part of a healthy diet. The recommended dietary allowance (RDA)—the amount most healthy people need each day to remain healthy—has been determined for most minerals. People who have a disorder may need more or less than this amount.

Consuming too little or too much of certain minerals can cause a nutritional disorder. People who eat a balanced diet containing a variety of foods are unlikely to develop a nutritional disorder or a major mineral deficiency, except for calcium, iodine, or iron deficiency. However, people who follow restrictive diets may not consume enough of a particular mineral (or vitamin). For example, vegetarians, including those who eat eggs and dairy products, are at risk of iron deficiency. Infants are more likely to develop deficiencies because they are growing rapidly (thus requiring large amounts of nutrients).

Consuming large amounts (megadoses) of mineral supplements without medical supervision may have harmful (toxic) effects.


Some minerals—especially the macrominerals—are important as electrolytes. The body uses electrolytes to help regulate nerve and muscle function and to maintain acid-base balance and fluid balance.

To function normally, the body must keep fluid levels from varying too much in
the areas of the body that contain fluid (called compartments). The three main compartments are :

** Fluid within cells
** Fluid in the space around cells
** Blood

Electrolytes, particularly sodium, help the body maintain normal fluid levels in these compartments (called fluid balance), because how much fluid a compartment contains depends on the concentration of electrolytes in it. If the electrolyte concentration is high, fluid moves into that compartment. If the electrolyte concentration is low, fluid moves out of that compartment. To adjust fluid levels, the body can actively move electrolytes in or out of cells. Thus, having electrolytes in the right concentrations (called electrolyte balance) is important in maintaining fluid balance among the compartments.

The kidneys help maintain electrolyte concentrations by filtering electrolytes from blood, returning some electrolytes, and excreting any excess into the urine. Thus, the kidney help maintain a balance between daily consumption and excretion.

If the balance of electrolytes is disturbed, disorders can develop. An electrolyte imbalance can result from the following:

** Becoming dehydrated
** Taking certain drugs
** Having certain heart, kidney, or liver disorders
** Being given intravenous fluids or feedings in inappropriate amounts


a) Calcium

Good Sources :
Milk and milk products, meat, fish eaten with the bones (such as sardines), eggs, fortified cereal products, beans, fruits, and vegetables

Main functions :
Required for the formation of bone and teeth, for blood clotting, for normal muscle function, for the normal functioning of many enzymes, and for normal heart rhythm

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
1,000 milligrams (1,200 milligrams for people over 50 years)

Safe Upper Limit :
2,500 milligrams

b) Chloride

Good Sources :
Salt, beef, pork, sardines, cheese, green olives, corn bread, potato chips, sauerkraut, and processed or canned foods (usually as salt)

Main functions :
Involved in electrolyte balance

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
1,000 milligrams

c) Chromium

Good Sources :
Liver, processed meats, whole-grain cereals, and nuts

Main functions :
Enables insulin to function (insulin controls blood sugar levels).
Helps in the processing (metabolism) and storage of carbohydrates, protein, and fat

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
** 35 micrograms for men aged 50 and younger
** 25 micrograms for women aged 50 and younger
** 30 micrograms for men over 50
** 20 micrograms for women over 50

d) Copper

Good Sources :
Organ meats, shellfish, cocoa, mushrooms, nuts, dried legumes, dried fruits, peas, tomato products, and whole-grain cereals

Main functions :
Is a component of many enzymes that are necessary for energy production, for antioxidant action (antioxidants protect cells against damage due to reactive by-products of normal cell activity called free radicals), and for formation of the hormone epinephrine, red blood cells, bone, and connective tissue

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
900 micrograms

Safe Upper Limit :
10,000 micrograms

e) Fluoride

Good Sources :
Seafood, tea, and fluoridated water

Main functions :
Required for the formation of bone and teeth

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
3 milligrams for women
4 milligrams for men

Safe Upper Limit :
10 milligrams

f) Iodine

Good Sources :
Seafood, iodized salt, eggs, cheese, and drinking water (in amounts that vary by the iodine content of local soil)

Main functions :
Required for the formation of thyroid hormones

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
150 micrograms

Safe Upper Limit :
1,100 micrograms

g) Iron

Good Sources :
Beef, poultry, fish, kidneys, and liver (these are heme iron)

Soybean flour, beans, molasses, spinach, clams, and fortified grains and cereals (these are non-heme iron - the body absorbs heme iron better than nonheme iron).

Main functions :
Required for the formation of many enzymes in the body. Is an important component of muscle cells and of hemoglobin, which enables red blood cells to carry oxygen and deliver it to the body's tissues

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
** 8 milligrams for women over 50 and for men
** 18 milligrams for women aged 50 and younger (premenopause)
** 27 milligrams for pregnant women
** 9 milligrams for breastfeeding women

Safe Upper Limit : 45 milligrams

h) Magnesium

Good sources :
Leafy green vegetables, nuts, cereal grains, beans, and tomato paste

Main functions :
Required for the formation of bone and teeth, for normal nerve and muscle function, and for the activation of enzymes

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
** 320 milligrams for women
** 420 milligrams for men

i) Manganese

Good Sources :
Whole-grain cereals, pineapple, nuts, tea, beans, and tomato paste

Main functions :
Required for the formation of bone and the formation and activation of certain enzymes

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
** 2.3 milligrams for men
** 1.8 milligrams for women

Safe Upper Limit : 6 to 11 milligrams

j) Molybdenum

Good Sources :
Milk, legumes, whole-grain breads and cereals, and dark green vegetables

Main functions :
Required for metabolism of nitrogen, the activation of certain enzymes, and normal cell function. Helps break down sulfites (present in foods naturally and added as preservatives)

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
45 micrograms

Safe Upper Limit :
1,100 to 2,000 micrograms

k) Phosphorus

Good Sources :
Dairy products, meat, poultry, fish, cereals, nuts, and legumes

Main functions :
Required for the formation of bone and teeth and for energy production. Used to form nucleic acids, including DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid)

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
700 milligrams

Safe Upper Limit :
4,000 milligrams

l) Potassium

Good Sources :
Whole and skim milk, bananas, tomatoes, oranges, melons, potatoes, sweet potatoes, prunes, raisins, spinach, turnip greens, collard greens, kale, other green leafy vegetables, most peas and beans, and salt substitutes (potassium chloride)

Main functions :
Required for normal nerve and muscle function. Involved in electrolyte balance

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
3.5 grams

m) Selenium

Good Sources :
Meats, seafood, nuts, and cereals (depending on the selenium content of soil where grains were grown). Acts as an antioxidant, with vitamin E

Main functions :
Required for thyroid gland function

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
55 micrograms

Safe Upper Limit :
400 micrograms

n) Sodium

Good Sources :
Salt, beef, pork, sardines, cheese, green olives, corn bread, potato chips, sauerkraut, and processed or canned foods (usually as salt)

Main functions :
Required for normal nerve and muscle function. Helps the body maintain a normal electrolyte and fluid balance

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
1,000 milligrams

Safe Upper Limit :
2,400 milligrams

o) Zinc

Good Sources :
Meat, liver, oysters, seafood, peanuts, fortified cereals, and whole grains (depending on the zinc content of soil where grains were grown)

Main functions :
Used to form many enzymes and insulin. Required for healthy skin, healing of wounds, and growth

Recommended Dietary Allowance for adults :
15 milligrams

Friday, February 13, 2009

What is Acai berry ?

[Extracted from]

Acai Berry is a small round black purplish fruit that looks like grape both in appearance and size though with a lesser pulp. Acai berry fruit has a single large seed, when the berries are ripe, the exocarp turn into a deep purple color or green depending on the type of acai berry as well as its maturity. The endocarp of the acai berry fruit takes about 80% of the fruit while the fleshy part of the berry is the mesocarp that contains the pulp which is of a uniform thickness. Acai berries are a very important component of food for the Amazon people of Brazil and it constitute and forty-two percent of the food intakes for the people of this region and the juice and pulp of this fruits have been found to be very useful and it is used as blends in various juices such as soda, smoothies and several other drinks.

The berries have the tendency to deteriorate very fast after harvest due to its high fatty content and today several companies now use acai berry to produce juice and energy drink. Acai berry is not only good for food, since eighty percent of the fruit constitutes the seed; the seeds can be ground for livestock or used as manure for plants. The research carried out on acai berry fruit has been found it to be very nutritious and it has been reported that about 100g of extract of the fruit contains 52,2g of Carbohydrates, 8.1g of protein, 32.5g of fat and 44.2g of fiber forms part of the carbohydrates portion of the fruit. Acai berry being a high fat content fruits also contains oleic acid, palmitic acid and linoleic acid, the berries also have antioxidant properties, also the fruit have been known to help increase energy level and when the juice are extract from the fruit to produce beverages it aid the digestive system.

Acai berry has several health benefits such improving mental clarity, promotes sound sleep, supplies the body with vital vitamins, cleanse and detoxifies the body of toxins that are infectious, builds the immune system, enhances sexual desire and performance, help in fighting cancerous cell, reduces the aging process, it alleviates diabetes, helps it normalizing and regulating the cholesterol levels, helps in proper functioning of the heart, reduces inflammation, increases circulation as well as improves vision. Though Acai berry is just coming on stage in America circle but it has been around for many centuries and has been a source of healthy living to the many people especial the natives of Brazil.

The fact the acai berries is eaten as food that not mean you can pluck the berries directly from the acai palm and start eating them, it has to be processed, since acai berry is becoming increasing popular today you might want to find out, what makes it sort after by people. Acai berry has omega fat unlike saturated fats that is common with fast foods, it also contains amino acid, protein, Vitamin A, B1 and E and electrolytes that is why it is becoming a miracle drink today. As, more consumers are finding out the benefits of Acai berry today so also are researchers amazed at the health benefits of the this small fruits.

Also acai berry fruits have been found to have no side effects, therefore taking acai berry just should not cause any concern to you, since researcher have not been able to come up with any side effect caused by the fruits, it is very safe to use, though further research is being carried out on this wonder fruit of nature.

Acai Antioxidants

If you are looking for a fruit that contains high antioxidant level, try acai berry and you will get as much antioxidant as required, acai berry contains more antioxidant than any fruit you can think of in the world, the only problem with acai berry antioxidants is that the level drops due to the various processing methods employed by various companies to create the acai products, the decrease in the level of antioxidant in various acai products reduces the nutritional value and healing properties of this super food. Acai antioxidants helps protect the cells against free radicals, since free radicals are molecules produced in the body through the break down of food or through environmental contacts like cigarettes smoke and radiation, these free radical has the ability to damage cells and increase the likely hood of heart disease, cancer and many other diseases. The intake of acai berry fruits can supply the body the required level of anti-oxidants that is essentials to eliminate these free radicals from the body and also destroy cancerous cells in the body.

Since acai berry is a wonder working fruits that provides the body with many health benefits that will enhances the well being of the body, though acai berry fruits produces antioxidant that is useful to the body, there are many acai products about today that is being sold in supermarket, health stores and other health facilities, it might be hard to believe that though these acai products contains antioxidant, but the antioxidant level present in these acai products may not be sufficient enough for the body, therefore in order to obtain enough antioxidant from acai berry, the freeze- dried acai products is the best as it contains sufficient antioxidants that would be helpful to the body since it retains phytochemicals, though at a higher price than other acai products. Presently the United States ships imports some of the best acai antioxidants fruit in frozen block, yet it is still nutritional degraded, therefore the acai products available in the stores today does not contains the full acai antioxidants of the acai berry fruit.

Presently research carried out on the antioxidant level of freeze dried acai pulp and skin powder compared the oxygen radical absorbance capacity and it was discovered that acai berry had an oxygen radical absorbance of 1026.9 compared to the freeze-dried acai product with oxygen radical absorbance of 155, this does not mean that you cannot give these acai products a try, since antioxidant is very important to the body no matter the level, whether high or low, acai product is essential to the diet. Acai berry is about the same in size as the blue berry but it is contains more vitamins, antioxidants and minerals than any fruit that exists till date. Since acai berry is the major source of antioxidant anthocyanin. Anthocyanin is a type of phychemicals present in red wine that has a significant effect on the cardiovascular system and it has been known to help prevent blood clots, improve blood circulation, stops atherosclerosis and combat cancer but the anthocyanin in Acai is three and half times more potent than those found in red wine.

Apart from the benefit of antioxidant derived from acai, in helps increase the stamina of the body, increase the sexual drive in men, digestion, mental alertness and boost the immune system.

How this berry can help you stay healthy ?

With the growing popularity of the Acai fruit being used for healthy drinks and supplements there is a lot of health properties that are being found in just drinking this powerful juice. The countless diseases and illnesses could be solved if people actually eat a healthy diet and lived a pretty clean lifestyle. There are a lot of things that this juice has really made clear to those who are trying to live a clean lifestyle and if there’s anything that can be said of this it is to really consider the options of health and vitality. The benefits of drinking this juice is actually a good thing because of the fact that it’s really made waves in the holistic medical community. Many rave the properties that it has which is the increased energy many feel after drinking the juice and finding that their weight goes down and their cholesterol numbers are at a normal range.

Many are turned on to drinking the juice when they hear about the things this juice can do for those who commit to a healthy lifestyle. This juice has been noted help reduce the risk of heart disease and even improving mood and cognition. This is a promising level of health that many are really looking forward to because of the high risk of using conventional medication and many are looking for new and safer ways to stay healthy without the dangerous side effects of drugs used to treat various kinds of medical conditions. This is what you are going to get if you commit to a healthy diet and exercise plan and also taking in vital nutrients that are going to be beneficial to your health. The one thing that’s going to really set the pace for this to be the top-notch health option for many is that only the most reliable of companies will have first dibs on customers who want a quality acai berry juice that has rewarding benefits health wise.

Most of this country is just now starting to get on the band wagon when it comes to health, yet it will take a pretty serious person to research and study the health properties of the acai berry. This is what will be the rising thing of the future when more and more diseases and illnesses surface when it comes to poor diet and lifestyle choices and many are going to be looking for the next best thing in healthy supplements and vitamins to help with reduction of disease and illness factors. So many diseases have been noted to improve when people are drinking acai juice on a regular basis. There has been reports of improved blood sugar levels especially those who have hypertension and diabetes who have a hard time getting their numbers on a steady level where it’s normal and healthy.

Acai benefits are also noted to have helped those with cancer and other serious diseases to lower chances of recurrence. Drinking acai juice has even helped to resolve certain diseases like type-2 diabetes that can be resolved with diet and exercise. This is becoming a high thing for many health professionals who are trying to find new and ingenious ways to getting a better product that’s good for their clients. With the increase of dangerous side effects from the drugs that are currently out here on the market used to treat everything from cancer to high blood pressure the need for something safer is what is the concern from the doctors to the patient.

What is WHEY ?

[Extracted from Wisegeek]

Whey is a by-product of cheese making. It is formed when the curds separate from the milk or cream. After the cheese curds are formed, the remaining liquid is called whey. This liquid is watery and thin. Sometimes whey has a tinge of bluish color, but this depends on the quality and type of milk used.

Whey can be made from any type of milk, with cow's milk being the most popular in the United States. Goat's milk is commonly used in the Middle East and in some desert areas, camel's milk is used in the cheese making process.

Whey is also formed in the making of yogurt, being the thin liquid that forms on top of the settled yogurt. This can be drained off and added to shakes, smoothies or other liquid drinks for added protein.

Whey is often used in the making of ricotta cheese. Using vinegar or another acidic liquid, the whey is heated and the addition of the vinegar will cause the fats to congeal into the curds that create the cheese.

Whey is an excellent source of protein, vitamins, minerals and lactose. It is the base of many protein drinks for athletes or others wishing to build or repair muscle tissues. Whey is also an important supplement for those who have limited mobility in the limbs as it contributes to the prevention of atrophy of muscular cells.

Whey is also used in pet foods as a source of protein and fats. It contributes to a healthy coat and proper muscle development.

Most people are familiar with the old nursery rhyme, Little Miss Muffet as she was eating her curds and whey. This type of cheese would be similar to cottage cheese and made by allowing milk to sour and naturally separate into curds and whey. While this method of making cheese may not sound appetizing to most people, it is a method used around the world in many different cultures.

Whey can be an important addition to anyone's diet. Those that have difficulty in finding the time to eat right or have other dietary concerns such as protein needs in a vegetarian diet, will find whey an excellent supplement.

Acid and Alkaline Food

[Adapted from 'Acid Alkaline' by Herman Aihara]

The difference between happiness and health .. or sickness, depression and medical bills.

An acid body is a magnet for sickness, disease, cancer and aging. Eating more alkaline foods helps shift your body's pH and oxygenate your system. Alkaline foods keep your body healthy and functioning correctly, preventing cancer.

You become what you eat.

Acid foods cause sickness, disease, cancer and aging.
Healthy tissues are alkaline. Cancerous tissues are acidic.

pH Balance
The pH scale is from 0 to 14, with numbers below 7 acidic (low on oxygen) and numbers above 7 alkaline. The blood, lymph and cerebral spinal fluid in the human body are designed to be slightly alkaline at a pH of 7.4. At a pH slightly above 7.4 cancer cells become dormant and at pH 8.5 cancer cells will die while healthy cells will live.

Alkaline and Acid Basic Categories

Mild Alkaline - 80%
Fruits - Vegetables - Berries - Dairy

Strongly Alkaline - Supplement
Calcium - Magnesium - Potassium - Cesium

Strongly Acid - (avoid)
Meat - Fish - Eggs - Soft drinks

Mild Acid - 20%
Grains - Legumes - Nuts - Seeds

There are two types of acid and alkaline foods

1) Acid or alkaline foods, meaning how much acid or alkaline the foods contain.

2) Acid or alkaline 'forming' foods, meaning the pH condition foods cause in the body after being digested.

Acidic conditions inhibit nerve action whereas alkalinity stimulates nerve action. Cold showers make the blood alkaline, while hot showers make the blood acid. A balanced diet helps to maintain the pH balance of the blood. Results however take more than a couple of days to show up. If blood develops a more acidic condition, then the body will inevitably deposit the excess acid to another area of the body so that the blood will be able to maintain an alkaline condition. As this cycle continues, these areas will increase in acidity and some cells will die. The dead cells will then turn into acids.

Some cells may adapt and instead of dying as normal cells do in a acid environment, they will survive by becoming abnormal. These abnormal cells are known as malignant cells. Malignant cells do not correspond with brain function nor with our DNA memory code. Malignant cells grow indefinitely and without order. This is cancer, and cancer develops in the following stages :

1. The ingestion of numerous acid forming foods, fatty foods, refined foods, carcinogenic substances such as nitrates, and chemically treated foods. X-ray scans also contribute.

2. Constipation is increased.

3. An increase of acidity in the blood. This stage causes an increase of white cells and a decrease of red cells, which is the beginning of leukemia.

4. An increase of acidity in the extra cellular fluids.

5. An increase of acidity into the intracellular fluids.

6. The birth of malignant cells. This stage of cancer is known as 'initiation'.

7. Further ingestion of multiple acid foods. Traditional treatment includes high levels of radiation, chemicals and drugs. This stage is called 'cancer promotion'.


Types of Alkaline Products


Barley Grass
Green Beans
Brussel sprouts
Edible Flowers
Fermented Veggies
Greens - Beet, Chard, Collard, Mustard, Wild
Nightshade Veggies
Parsnips (high glycemic)
Living Sprouts
Sweet Potatoes


Daikon Radish
Dandelion Root
Maitake, Reishi and Shitake Mushrooms
Sea Veggies - Kelp, Kombu, Nori and Wakame Seaweed
Umeboshi (pickled plums)


Banana (high glycemic)
Berries (Blackberries, Raspberries, Strawberries, Goji)
Cherries, sour
Coconut, fresh
Currants and Raisins
Dates and Figs, both dried
Grapes (Purple, Red)
Lemon and Lime
Melon - Cantaloupe, Honeydew, Musk, Water
Orange and Tangerine
Umeboshi Plums
Tropical Fruits


Cottage Cheese
Chicken Breast
Nuts - Especially Almonds and Chestnuts
Seeds - Pumpkin, Sprouted, Sunflower - Millet
Tempeh (fermented)
Tofu (fermented)
Yogurt, Plain




All Herbs
Cayenne and Chili Pepper
Curry - Tumeric
Cinnamon - Ginger
Miso - Tamari
Sea Salt


Apple Cider Vinegar
Bee Pollen
Lecithin Granules
Molasses, blackstrap
Butter, unsalted
Soured Dairy Products
Probiotic Cultures
Marine Phytoplankton
Alkaline Antioxidant Water - Mineral Water
Tea - Dandelion, Essiac, Green, Herbal, Ginseng, Kombucha
Fresh Fruit Juice - Green Juices and Wheat Grass Juice - Veggie Juices
Organic Milk (unpasteurized) MILK IS FOR COWS NOT HUMANS !


Cesium : pH 14
Potassium : pH 14
Sodium : pH 14
Calcium : pH 12
Magnesium : pH 9


Types of Acidic Products


Winter Squash


Canned or Glazed Fruits


Bran, wheat
Bran, oat
Crackers, soda
Flour, white
Flour, wheat
Hemp Seed Flour
Oats (rolled)
Rice (all)
Rice Cakes
Wheat Germ


Beans - Black, Kidney, Lima, Pinto, Red,
Soy, White, Lentils
Almond Milk, Rice Milk, Soy Milk (may cause allergies)
Peas - Chick and Green


Butter, Salted
Cheese - Cow, Sheep and Goat (most desirable)
Cheese - Parmesan and Processed
Ice Cream
Ice Milk


Brazil Nuts, Cashews, Peanuts, Pecans, Pistachio.
Peanut Butter


Beef (US beef filled with antibiotics, banned from exportation to Europe)
Corned Beef
Lamb (best choice) and Veal (INHUMANE)
Pork and Bacon
Organ Meats
Fish - Carp, Cod, Haddock, Pike, Salmon, Sardines, Tuna
Shellfish - Clams, Lobster, Mussels, Oysters*, Scallops, Shrimp
Eggs - Less acidic if natural feed, no hormones, no antibiotics.


Oil - Avocado, Canola, corn, Flax, Hemp Seed, Virgin Olive (best choice), Safflower, Sesame, Sunflower


Corn Syrup
Sugar (poisonous, aging, feeds cancer and obesity)


Hard Liquor
Wine (Red wine is healthy - skip the white)


Soft Drinks
Sodas (fizzy water, sugar and chemicals)
Soy Sauce
Distilled Vinegar

Drugs - Prescribed Medication and Street
Food Additives
Herbicides and Pesticides

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Cancer Treatment !


1. Every person has cancer cells in the body. These cancer cells do not show up in the standard tests until they have multiplied to a few billion. When doctors tell cancer patients that there are no more cancer cells in their bodies after treatment, it just means the tests are unable to detect the cancer cells because they have not reached the detectable size.

2. Cancer cells occur between 6 to more than 10 times in a person's lifetime.

3. When the person's immune system is strong the cancer cells will be destroyed and prevented from multiplying and forming tumors.

4. When a person has cancer it indicates the person has multiple nutritional deficiencies. These could be due to genetic, environmental, food and lifestyle factors.

5. To overcome the multiple nutritional deficiencies, changing diet and including supplements will strengthen the immune system.

6. Chemotherapy involves poisoning the rapidly growing cancer cells and also destroys rapidly-growing healthy cells in the bone marrow, gastro-intestinal tract etc, and can cause organ damage, like liver, kidneys, heart, lungs etc.

7. Radiation while destroying cancer cells also burns, scars and damages healthy cells, tissues and organs.

8. Initial treatment with chemotherapy and radiation will often reduce tumor size. However prolonged use of chemotherapy and radiation do not result in more tumor destruction.

9. When the body has too much toxic burden from chemotherapy and radiation the immune system is either compromised or destroyed, hence the person can succumb to various kinds of infections and complications.

10. Chemotherapy and radiation can cause cancer cells to mutate and become resistant and difficult to destroy. Surgery can also cause cancer cells to spread to other sites.

11. An effective way to battle cancer is to starve the cancer cells by not feeding it with the foods it needs to multiply.


(a) Sugar, is a cancer-feeder.

By cutting off sugar it cuts off one important food supply to the cancer cells. Sugar substitutes like Nutrasweet, Equal, Spoonful, etc are made with Aspartame and it is harmful. A better natural substitute would be Manuka honey or molasses but only in very small amounts. Table salt has a chemical added to make it white in colour. Better alternative is Bragg's aminos or sea salt. (THE WEST MADE US to CHANGE FROM SEA to WHITE IODISED SALT).

(b) Milk causes the body to produce mucus, especially in the gastro- intestinal tract. Cancer feeds on mucus.

By cutting off milk and substituting with unsweetened soya milk cancer cells are being starved.

(c) Cancer cells thrive in an acid environment.

A meat-based diet is acidic and it is best to eat fish, and a little chicken rather than beef or pork. Meat also contains livestock antibiotics, growth hormones and parasites, which are all harmful,especially to people with cancer.

(d) A diet made of 80% fresh vegetables and juice, whole grains, seeds, nuts and a little fruits help put the body into an alkaline environment.

About 20% can be from cooked food including beans. Fresh vegetable juices provide live enzymes that are easily absorbed and reach down to cellular levels within 15 minutes to nourish and enhance growth of healthy cells.

To obtain live enzymes for building healthy cells try and drink fresh vegetable juice (most vegetables including bean sprouts) and eat some raw vegetables 2 or 3 times a day. Enzymes are destroyed at temperatures of 104 degrees F (40 degrees C).

(e) Avoid coffee, tea, and chocolate, which have high caffeine.

Green tea is a better alternative and has cancer-fighting properties. Water- best to drink purified water, or filtered, to avoid known toxins and heavy metals in tap water. Distilled water is acidic, avoid it.

12. Meat protein is difficult to digest and requires a lot of digestive enzymes. Undigested meat remaining in the intestines become putrified and leads to more toxic buildup.

13. Cancer cell walls have a tough protein covering. By refraining from or eating less meat it frees more enzymes to attack the protein walls of cancer cells and allows the body's killer cells to destroy the cancer cells.

14. Some supplements build up the immune system (IP6, Florssence, Essiac, anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals, EFAs etc.) to enable the body's own killer cells to destroy cancer cells. Other supplements like vitamin E are known to cause apoptosis, or programmed cell death, the body's normal method of disposing of damaged, unwanted, or unneeded cells.

15. Cancer is a disease of the mind, body and spirit. A proactive and positive spirit will help the cancer warrior be a survivor. Anger, unforgiveness and bitterness put the body into a stressful and acidic environment. Learn to have a loving and forgiving spirit. Learn to relax and enjoy life.

16. Cancer cells cannot thrive in an oxygenated environment. Exercising daily, and deep breathing help to get more oxygen down to the cellular level. Oxygen therapy is another means employed to destroy cancer cells.


1. No plastic containers in micro.

2. No water bottles in freezer.

3. No plastic wrap in microwave.

Johns Hopkins has recently sent this out in its newsletters. This info is being circulated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center as well. Dioxin chemicals causes cancer, especially breast cancer.

Dioxins are highly poisonous to the cells of our bodies. Don't freeze your plastic bottles with water in them as this releases dioxins from the plastic.
Recently, Dr. Edward Fujimoto, Wellness Program Manager at Castle Hospital was on a TV program to explain this health hazard.

He talked about dioxins and how bad they are for us. He said that we should not be heating our food in the microwave using plastic containers. This especially applies to foods that contain fat.

He said that the combination of fat, high heat, and plastics releases dioxin into the food and ultimately into the cells of the body.

Instead, he recommends using glass, such as CorningWare, Pyrex or ceramic containers for heating food.
You get the same results, only without the dioxin. So such things as TV dinners, instant ramen and soups, etc., should be removed from the container and heated in something else. Paper isn't bad but you don't know what is in the paper. It's just safer to use tempered glass, Corning Ware, etc. He reminded us that a while ago some of the fast food restaurants moved away from the foam containers to paper. The dioxin problem is one of the reasons..

Also, he pointed out that plastic wrap, such as Saran, is just as dangerous when placed over foods to be cooked in the microwave. As the food is nuked (microwaved), the high heat causes poisonous toxins to actually melt out of the plastic wrap and drip into the food. Cover food with a paper towel instead.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Cancer, Diabetes & Heart Disease can be overcome through diet

An Interview with Dr. Tom Wu N.M.D.

Cancer, Diabetes, & Heart Disease can be overcome through diet. Dr. Tom Wu’s breakthroughs with Cancer & Diabetes have earned him the “Remarkable Contribution Award” from the American Cancer Society and the “World Famous Doctor Award” from The United Nations.

Jeff :
Dr. Wu, you have helped many thousands of people use “Readily Available Foods” to help win the battle against cancer, various forms of heart disease, and even helping people with type 1 & 2 diabetes to stabilize their blood sugar naturally. You use many tools, but mostly it is about Simple Foods. Often times you give seminars to Western Doctors in Europe in groups of over 1000. Do you find that these European Western Doctors are receptive to your methods given you have achieved such phenomenal results? Is there any resistance ?

Dr. Tom Wu :
Most of the time doctors are receptive to what we are saying. We don’t force them to believe, but we show them the results we’ve been having. I tell them to try the program for 3 months and provide them a scientific presentation, which proves that all of these diseases come from the wrong food. Fried food causes blockage in the arteries, bad circulation, cholesterol, and then Heart disease. They realize these things. Instead of giving a cholesterol lowering drug, we stop them from eating greasy foods. Many of the Doctors find a good result. We use cleansing foods, which are very high in phytochemicals. These are good for cleansing out the cholesterol and homocysteine, which are the main risk factors for heart disease. Phytochemicals are nature’s cleansing agents for ridding the body of arterial plaque. They must come from the food that God has provided us within its natural state, complete with its co-factors and co-enzymes.

Jeff :
Let’s talk about helping to win the battle against Cancer. You’ve consulted a significant number of people in using “Readily Available Foods” to help win the fight against: Lung cancer, Breast cancer, and even Pancreatic cancer, which is known as being a certain death sentence. Your dietary guidelines have achieved success where most have failed. America spends over 200 Billion dollars annually on Cancer treatment and over 50 billion annually into researching a cure, but you seem to understand the root cause. What is the most important factor for humanity to conquer this epidemic disease Cancer ?

Dr. Tom Wu :
Cancer is usually caused by a bad lifestyle. Smoking, drinking, going to bed at a late hour, not getting enough exercise, living in a stressful environment, and above all else - eating the wrong foods. All of these things add to the risk factors for cancer.

In my medical practice people come from all over the world to see me for cancer. I tell them I don’t “treat” any kind of Cancer. I don’t treat any kind of disease. I only change the food they eat. It depends on what kind of cancer to say what kind of foods will work. They need to blend certain foods to break open the phytochemicals in the fiber of fruits and veggies. Then I will also give them Qigong and Breathing exercises to help relive the stress. Cancer is also an emotional disease. So the Qigong really helps. Conventional treatment uses 3 invasive methods, which are surgery, radiation, and drugs. These often damage the body so much that the patient suffers beyond repair, but I never advise the patient to refuse western medicine. It is a personal choice. In my practice often times a special high dose of Phytochemicals, from natural foods, can often relive the problem. Lets take breast cancer for instance. Usually if you supply the body with enough phytochemicals that contain Indole-3-Carbinol (I3C), which is plentiful in the cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, & spinach the body will take this and fight the cancer. It is a fierce fighter of breast cancer. If they eat this food everyday as much as they can in a semi-raw state of 108 degrees Fahrenheit, it will be a fierce fighter against the cancer. This temperature will increase the absorption and can be achieved by blending the ingredients in a high powered blender. Most important is to use a high powered, 3 horse power blender, to break out the phytochemicals which are binded to the fibers. This abundance of phytochemicals allows the blood to be cleansed and stimulate the enzyme phase 2 inside each cell. A detoxification enzyme inside each cell, which is called enzyme phase 2. These enzymes need phytochemicals to stimulate their function. Most of the time the diet we eat of cooked and refined foods does not possess them... and for this reason the immune system does not function well. That’s the main reason why people get cancer.

Our dietary methods of guiding patients with cancer has been successful in a signifigant number of cases. The patient goes on a specialized smoothie diet with various vegetables, fruits and their accompanying seeds, and common garden herbs which are known to be rich in phytochemicals. It all gets thrown in the blender. The type of cancer the person has will dictate which foods are chosen.

Jeff :
Food cures have been known about since the time of Hippocrates. How can a simple household food reverse an epidemic like Children’s Autism ? Also please talk about what foods will actually stabilize blood sugar naturally for people who were born with Type 1 Diabetes ?

Dr. Tom Wu :
To heal the body we need to eat a variety of foods. Not just one. We need every variety, because each food has nutrients that other foods do not have. For example, people that have Autism, and this one is easy to prevent. Many times... Autism is caused by vaccinations or flu shots, which contain mercury. When these old age people get the flu shot they also get the mercury. Surely this mercury can cause Autism and cause Alzheimer’s disease too. But in the food Cilantro, lies the solution. The Chinese use Cilantro as a chelating agent to help bring out the Mercury from the body and take care for the problem. But it’s not only the Cilantro that is needed, you need to have a total lifestyle change and a high powered blender to extract all the phytochemicals from the vegetables.

For Type 1 Diabetes, I will use Swiss chard. It is also called red chard and green chard. These are very common vegetables. If people eat these kinds of vegetables everyday, they will improve their diabetes naturally. Swiss Chard and other specific vegetables contain a high amount of phytochemicals that are “Insulin-like”. With type 1 diabetes, the pancreas does not function, but you can use certain vegetables to regenerate the pancreas and help it secrete insulin again. You can also use certain Indian Herbs like Gymnema Sylvestre and Cumin seed, as these herbs can help rejuvenate the pancreas function to normal. If a high powered blender is used to make a smoothie including these foods then there is a good chance the Pancreas will eventually produce a normal supply of insulin and take care of type 1 naturally.

Type 2 diabetes it’s what we call a metabolic syndrome because it is usually accompanied by high blood pressure, overweight, insomnia, and cardiovascular disease. Sometimes it is called X-syndrome because it comes with so many problems. Type 2 diabetics have enough insulin, but it doesn’t work. This is called “insulin resistance”, and it too has a natural solution. What you have to do is add 3 or 4 cucumbers to the diet per day and then the insulin function will begin to improve. When the insulin function is restored, then the weight will naturally come down and the sugar will naturally come down.

Jeff :
Most people are shocked when you tell them you’re 67 years old. I’ve never seen anyone your age with such a radiant shine to their skin and no wrinkles. You have said that “Juicing” fruits and vegetables actually accelerates the aging process. Why does juicing not prevent, and what makes BLENDING the superior option for any nutrition program ?

Dr. Tom Wu :
That’s a good question. The juicer is excellent if you want more vitamins, minerals, and enzymes. But, this doesn’t prevent the body from getting older. To prevent aging and chronic disease we need the phytochemicals. When you use the juicer you do not get the anti-aging nutrients at all. Nearly all phytochemicals exist in the skin, fibers, and seeds. When you juice you throw these parts away. Some people use a blender which is less than 3 horsepower and the results have not been the same. A regular blender tastes good, but you don’t break out all the phytochemicals.

Jeff :
You also put the seeds in the blender right? Even the avocado seed !

Dr. Tom Wu :
Yes I do !. When I eat the avocado I always eat the seed. It is packed with very good nutrients. It has the life force. It is a very high Qi food ! It’s also the highest in soluble fiber. This soluble fiber binds to the fat and excess cholesterol. Then we can lower cholesterol and improve heart function naturally. We can improve the blood circulation by pulling out all the fatty deposits in our circulatory system with the soluble fiber of the avocado seed. Soluble fiber is very difficult to get in our diet. Oatmeal has some, but it cannot compare with the avocado seed. Any heart disease patient must eat the avocado including the seed.