Monday, March 24, 2008

The Probiotics Revolution

Dr. Gary Huffnagle, a professor of immunology at my alma matter, the University of Michigan Medical School, has written a fine book about the importance of adequate good bacteria in the digestive tract. Now if we can just get the university folks to accept food allergies, lack of digestive enzymes and hydrochloric acid, and yeast overgrowth as very important co-existing factors in digestive problems, we will really have a revolution. Most of our very common digestive disorders would be solved.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Adapted by Terry Chappell

Oh God, our heavenly Father,
Look at our brokenness.

We know that in all your creation
Only the human family
Has strayed from your sacred way.

We know that we are the ones
Who are divided,
And we are the ones
Who must come back together
To walk in the sacred way.

Please, God,
Teach us love, compassion, and honor,
Grant us wisdom and strength,
That we may heal the earth,
And heal each other.


Monday, March 10, 2008

Evidence-based Hogwash

One of the great hoaxes of modern medicine is that all conventional medicine is scientifically-based, and that complementary and alternative medicine should not be utilized because of a lack of evidence. Dr. Julian Whitaker in Health and Healing points out that only 25% of medical treatments used today are backed by objective evidence, and that includes bypass surgery, angioplasty, spinal fusion for back pain, Pap tests for low risk women, routine chest Xrays, and tubes in children’s ears. Even if objective evidence is available, which costs millions of dollars and is usually supplied only by drug companies with a profit incentive, the studies just report what happens in the majority of a large group. Individual variation, which is very common in human beings, is not considered important.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

A Surgical Cure for Diabetes?

The Los Angles Times reported on a AMA Journal article by Australian surgeons that compares a stomach banding surgery to a conventional dietary approach for Type 2 diabetics. All patients were obese and had fairly mild cases with recent onset. Those that had surgery lost 20% of their body weight and 73% of them went into complete remission. Those on a diet lost only 1.3% of their body weight, and 13% went into remission. The results stress the importance of weight loss for obese diabetics, but vigorous lifestyle changes including exercise and an integrative approach with a Lo Carb diet to produce the weight loss is surely a safer approach in the long run. This study lasted only 2 years, and the long-term consequences of creating surgical malabsorption were not evaluated. Such surgery should never become a treatment of first resort for type 2 diabetes.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Low Carbs or a Vegetarian Diet—Which is Better?

It depends on who you are. A recent article in Circulation identified lots of red meat, processed meat, fried foods and diet soda as major factors for developing heart disease and Diabetes. However, new guidelines published on Diabetes, for the first time listed Low Carbs as a legitamate choice to prevent and treat Diabetes. If you have high triglycerides, you definitely do better on Low Carbs. If not, you might want to select a vegetarian diet with some fish and poultry. Regardless, junk food and artificial sweeteners are bad for you. Fruits and Veggies are good—aim for at least 5-7 servings a day. If you eat meat, eat it lean and avoid frying or grilling it.