Newsletter Archives > Monthly Health Newsletter: August 2009 Health Newsletter

August 2009 Health Newsletter

Current Articles

» Dandelions For Dinner?
» Surfing The Electric Sky
» Chiropractic Spinal Manipulation Effective In The Elderly As Well
» Common Spine Surgery As Effective As No Surgery At All
» Smoking Reduces Mobility In Upper Spine
» Chiropractic Care To Be A Standard Benefit For Active Duty Military Personnel

Dandelions For Dinner?

            Did you know that the dandelion is one of the world's most nutritional foods, with more vitamins and minerals than even broccoli or spinach?  In our country, the dandelion is commonly thought of as a "weed," which we commonly see growing rampant in fields, roadsides, and unattended yards in the springtime.  Perhaps you remember picking dandelions as a child and couldn't understand why your parents weren't as thrilled with the beautiful "flowers" as you were.  Maybe you were even bold enough to taste your bouquet, unconsciously aware of its health benefits.  As adults, we tend to rely on others and want the support of studies to tell us what is good for us…. which is why you will be amazed at what you are about to read!                        

            Rich in potassium, calcium, magnesium, niacin, thiamin, iron, and vitamin A, as well as other micro-nutrients, the dandelion has one-third more beta-carotene (the precursor to vitamin A) than carrots, (840 g beta-carotene/100 g for dandelions vs. 610 g/100 g for carrots.  Used medicinally since the 11th century, the dandelion is known for its ability to purify the blood and detoxify the body.  It is among the top six herbs in the Chinese herbal medicine chest.  Taking approximately 5mL (1 metric teaspoon) one or more times per day of dandelion as a liquid herbal supplement is the best way to obtain all of its therapeutic benefits.  In our office,  we carry Dandelion Leaves 1:1 and Dandelion Root 1:2, which are listed by MediHerb to help with fat metabolism, aid digestion and bowel   function, and support your kidneys, liver, gallbladder, skin, and urinary tract.  Not surprisingly, it's often used in weight loss programs.  Dandelion greens are also an interesting addition to salads and can be included in recipes, such as those found in The Dandelion Celebration, A Guide To Unexpected Cuisine by Peter A. Gail, PhD (on our shelf in the office).  Roasted dandelion root smells and tastes much like coffee, minus the caffeine, so drinking an instant herbal alternative to coffee, such as Dandy Blend, is great way to obtain the benefits of dandelion.                                                                                                    

            Stop by the office, pick up a FREE packet single serving of Dandy Blend and see for yourself how delicious it tastes.  Begin celebrating the bounty of our Michigan spring by including some dandelion in your diet today!

Author: Dr. William H. Karl, D.C.
Source: Dr. William H. Karl, D.C.
Copyright: Dr. William H. Karl, D.C. 2009

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Surfing The Electric Sky


Recently, I got a new cell phone.  Highly functional with a full keyboard inside to make texting easier and faster, it is sleek and sexy.  It enticed me with new features and the ability to do everything I needed my phone to do, and more.  Anxious to start using it, I didn't read the instructions, much less the precautions in fine print.  Reading how electromagnetic radiation from my new cell phone could hurt me was the last thing on my mind.  Modern technology, with all of its glitz and glamour, is here to stay; and besides, I would miss my computer, my Wi-Fi, my cell phone, my television and all of the other wonderful electronic devices I use on a daily basis.  So, why should anyone learn more about the effects these things have on health?   

As a Certified Wellness Doctor, I am familiar with electromagnetic pollution as one of the Six Interferences to Health.  However, I have recently begun to do more research into the effects of electromagnetic radiation from carrying cell phones, spending time in front of television screens, and using computers.  It is my contention that as we increase our understanding of this invisible radiation that floods our environment and fills the sky, we can better make the kinds of choices that will benefit our health and our future.  I'm certain that you will agree how important this is, especially when it comes to our children. 

Looking up at the sky, we don't see anything except the beautiful colors of a sunset, a sunrise, or a reflection of our ever-changing weather.  What we don't see is something that is very dangerous, yet is just as real as the clouds.  Although easy to ignore, we are all affected by it.  The "it" I am referring to is the radiation that was developed in the name of progress.   Radar waves, television waves, and microwaves followed radio waves, one of the earliest forms of electromagnetic radiation.  Then came Extremely Low Frequency waves (ELF) that are used in communications with submerged submarines, Pulsed Electro-Magnetic Radiation waves (PEMR) that are used in old style television screens, and the latest are Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplex Modulation (OFDMM) that are used in the new digital televisions.

Quite a few years ago, it was observed that if you were in close proximity to radio wave transmitters, you could become ill.  This was aptly called "radio wave sickness" or "RWS."  As time went on, more problems with radiation were observed.  Research from as far back as 1989 shows problems stemming from time spent in front of television and computer screens, especially those of the tube (CRT) type.  These screens produce PEMR waves that affect productivity, development, behavior, memory, attention span, fatigue, reproduction and more.  Studies have shown that four solid hours in front of a screen increased the urinary output of adrenaline, a stress hormone that has been associated with aggression, nervousness, and even violence. (Reference: WHO publication-1989.) 

Exposure to PEMR waves coming from computers, televisions and video game screens also blocks the secretion of melatonin, the hormone needed for the immune system to function.  Blocking melatonin can result in general weakness, chronic fatigue, and pathogen attacks that disrupt endocrine functions.  Research has shown that after just 20 minutes of exposure to these types of screens, the corpus callosum (which divides the right and left brain) is saturated with electro-magnetic radiation and certain brain waves between the G and D lobes are shown to go flat. 

Cell phones create extra problems because of the fact that phones are constantly seeking and staying connected to the closest cell phone towers to be ready to serve at a moment's notice.  Since they emit microwaves even when not in active use, we are constantly eradiated from our cell phones.  Dr. George Carlo, formerly the lead epidemiologist of Cellular Telecommunication Industry Association, makes the risks very clear.  He states, "There are over 300 statistically significant findings showing an increased risk of tumors (from cell phone use.)  There are three to four statistically significant findings showing no increased risk.  So it's like 300 to 4.  So how do you reconcile that with what's in the news media?  We've never had an exposure that's that dangerous that's being sustained by four billion people (cell phone users worldwide)."  (EPOCH Times.Feb.2009)

Children are at the greatest risk from cell phone use due to the nature of their developing bodies and the possibility of mutation in cells that divide quickly.  This is the reason we try to avoid x-raying children under age twelve, and restrict exposure whenever possible below age twenty-one.  Often unbeknownst to their parents, I've heard that some children even sleep with cell phones under their pillows so they can text their friends at night.  Some experts believe that cell phone use may be contributing to learning disabilities, such as ADD and ADHD, as well as cancer, brain tumors and acoustic neuroma's.  Other risks to children come from the significant wave energies derived from WI-FI networks, high power lines, and cell towers that have been located on school property as an income source for financially strapped educational systems. 

By now you are probably shaking your head.  It is frightening stuff, but there are things that you can do.  Limiting time spent in front of computers and televisions is a great place to start.  When it comes to kids, limiting their exposure may not be easy, but it is so important.  Remember that your job as a parent is to protect your children from what they don't yet understand.  A Bible verse from the Gospel of Luke, Verse 11:12 says,  "No parent would hand their child a snake in place of a fish or a scorpion instead of an egg."  Since the media uses such sophisticated advertising in trying to seduce children (and adults) into wanting to buy all kinds of new electronic toys, parents have to be strong.  It's hard for parents to resist their child's begging for these new and exciting toys, or the latest video games.  It is equally hard to turn down requests to spend more time in front of the television or computer, and to ignore the cries that they are the only ones that don't have their own cell phone or computer.  Saying no isn't easy, but parents must remember that children will be exposed to electromagnetic radiation for a very long time!

Our bodies are extremely sensitive to even the minutest electrical fields that are produced by other people and other things on the planet.  You, or perhaps people you know, can probably feel the advance of a storm coming in their direction often days before it arrives.  People have been known to sense other phenomena as well.  How often have you heard the expressions,  " I feel it in my bones" or "This just doesn't feel right"?  You should not ignore the things that you feel, but instead use them to guide you.  If you don't feel well when you are under florescent lights or when you have been sitting too long at your computer, do something about it.  For example, replace those bulbs with some of the new full spectrum bulbs and make the best use natural sunlight whenever possible.  Get up and stretch intermittently when you are using a computer.  It is good for your eyes and will give your body a chance to rebalance itself.  We are so used to running our bodies and neglecting the things we need to do to take care of ourselves.  Perhaps we should feed and take care of our bodies as if we were planning on keeping them for a while - as if they were irreplaceable.  Wait a minute, they are!

Taking responsibility for your body and your health is the best way to offset the effects of electromagnetic radiation.  Although there is danger in our electric sky, fear can be replaced with understanding.  Going backwards in technology is not the answer.  Learn about the Six Interferences to Health by coming to workshops where I am a guest speaker, or call my office to make an appointment so that I can show you what you can do to reduce the ways that these interferences, such as electromagnetic radiation, interfere with your health.  Remember that the things that are invisible to us are the things that hurt us the most, as well as the things that help us the most.  Appreciate every sunrise and sunset, and start making the kinds of choices that will help you, rather than hurt you. 


Author: Dr. William H. Karl, D.C
Source: Dr. William H. Karl, D.C
Copyright: Dr. William H. Karl, D.C 2009

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Chiropractic Spinal Manipulation Effective In The Elderly As Well

Although chiropractic care has helped countless millions of patients of all ages, research studies have been primarily focused on those under the age of 55 years of age. In a new study, researchers evaluated the success of chiropractic care versus conservative medical care on 240 adults with an average age of 63 years who were suffering from subacute and chronic low back pain. Results of six weeks of either chiropractic care or minimal conservative medical care were compared via study participant completed disability-related questionnaires (measuring each participants overall function) at 3, 6, 12 and 24 weeks. Researchers found those receiving chiropractic care had significant improvements in their functional status as compared with those receiving medical care. Researchers also found that no serious adverse events were associated with chiropractic care. For those elderly adults who were under the impression that safe, natural and effective chiropractic care was only for infants, children and younger adults, we hope this clears up any misconceptions. If you or another maturing individual are suffering from health problems or would like to be professionally evaluated by a doctor of chiropractic, please don’t continue to wait - take that first important step by calling our offices today!

Source: JMPT. Volume 32, Issue 5, Pages 330-343 (June 2009).
Copyright: LLC 2009

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Common Spine Surgery As Effective As No Surgery At All

Close to 40,000 costly spinal surgeries referred to as vertebroplasty are performed each year in the United States. However, shocking new research may change that number. Published in the prestigious The New England Journal of Medicine, a new study indicates that vertebroplasty is as effective as performing a fake surgery. Vertebroplasty is a surgical procedure where the surgeon injects a cement-like substance into a fractured vertebrae for the purpose of providing vertebral strength and reducing the associated pain. According to Rachelle Buchbinder of Monash University in Malvern, Australia, whose group found that 36 volunteers who received sham surgery did just as well as 35 who got the real operation, "We had hoped this treatment might get the pain better quicker, but we couldn't demonstrate that… I don't think there's any place for vertebroplasty at the moment." According to Dr. James Weinstein of Dartmouth Medical School in New Hampshire, "The results may change vertebroplasty from a procedure that is virtually always considered to be successful to one that is considered no better than placebo." While it is not our intent to bash the medical profession, we feel the findings of this study and the comments of the physicians involved with this study are extremely newsworthy and should be made available to anyone considering spinal surgery.

Source: The New England Journal of Medicine. Vol. 361; No. 6. & Reuters. August 6, 2009.
Copyright: LLC 2009

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Smoking Reduces Mobility In Upper Spine

A recent study published in the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine has found the motion between vertebrae of the upper spine area (thoracic spine) in smokers is significantly reduced as compared to that of non-smokers. Smooth full range of motion between the vertebrae that make up the spine is essential not only for optimal trunk movement, but also for providing nourishment to the joints of spine. As the spinal vertebrae lose their natural full range of motion and thus their nutrition, spinal motion decreases and stiffness and spinal degeneration increases. Smoking also reduces the amount of oxygen the tissues of the body receive including those tissues of the spine. In effect, those who smoke are at even greater risk for spinal abnormalities, degeneration, stiffness, loss of motion and ultimately pain. If you or someone you know is suffering from back and/or neck (spinal) problems, especially if they smoke, have them call our offices today. Chiropractors are highly trained in conditions of the spine as well as conditions that affect the spine.

Source: Journal of Chiropractic Medicine. Volume 8, Issue 2, Pages 51-55.
Copyright: LLC 2009

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Chiropractic Care To Be A Standard Benefit For Active Duty Military Personnel

The U.S. House of Representatives has approved a directive that orders the Pentagon to make chiropractic care a standard benefit for all active duty military personnel.  The legislation is contained in HR 2647, a bill authorizing defense programs in fiscal year 2010, and is based in part on recommendations from the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) and the Association of Chiropractic Colleges (ACC).

The bill - passed by the full House on June 25 - also contains language allowing for chiropractic demonstration projects at overseas military locations and clarifies that chiropractic care at U.S. military facilities is to be performed only by a doctor of chiropractic.

"When signed into law, this legislation will pave the way for expanded access within the military health care system to the critical services offered by doctors of chiropractic—both stateside and overseas," said ACA President Glenn Manceaux, DC. "ACA leaders are dedicated to this effort and will settle for nothing less than full access to chiropractic."

In 2008, the House passed similar language in the form of HR 5658; however, that provision was not included in the Senate version of the bill.

"I would like to thank House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton, D-Mo.; Ranking Member Buck McKeon, R-Calif.; Rep. Neil Abercrombie, D-Hawaii; and Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Ala. for their support and for shepherding this language through the legislative process," Manceaux added.

To date, there is a doctor of chiropractic at 49 military bases around the country; however, according to a 2005 Government Accountability Office report, only 54 percent of servicemen and women eligible for chiropractic care can reasonably access the benefit.

This latest development comes on the heels of an announcement by TRICARE that beginning this fall, 11 additional military hospitals and clinics will provide access to chiropractic services for active duty military members, including facilities in Germany and Okinawa, Japan.

The Senate is expected to take up the legislation in the near future.  Watch ACA's Web site and publications for more details as they become available.

Author: American Chiropractic Association
Source: July 10, 2009.
Copyright: American Chiropractic Association 2009

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