Sunday, June 30, 2013

Sensible Sun Exposure Can Help Prevent Melanoma, Breast Cancer, and Hundreds of Other Health Problems

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By Dr. Mercola
A growing body of research clearly shows the absolute necessity of vitamin D for good health and disease prevention. However, despite vitamin D’s role in keeping your body ticking along like a well-oiled clock, you are likely deficient in the “sunshine vitamin”—because the majority of people are.
Our vitamin D levels have dropped as a result of being scared sunless by those spreading misinformation that the sun causes melanoma, a myth that survives by mass promotion but really lacks any factual basis. It has been repeated so many times that most people believe it.
Vitamin D affects your biological function by influencing nearly 3,000 of your genes through vitamin D receptors. In fact, vitamin D receptors are found throughout your body, which should come as no surprise, given we humans evolved in the sun.
Recent research1,2 has also revealed yet another benefit of sun exposure beyond the protective benefits of producing vitamin D, namely the production of nitric oxide—a compound that lowers your blood pressure.
According to the researchers, the heart-health benefits from this may outweigh the risk of developing skin cancer. Your vitamin D level varies not only with time of day, season, and geographic location, but also with your genetics.
For example, if you have dark skin, you may need up to 10 times more sun exposure to maintain an optimal vitamin D level as a person with pale skin. Redheads have to be particularly careful, as they appear to be genetically predisposed to developing melanoma, regardless of whether or not they spend time in the sun.
Tens of Thousands of Health Studies Attest to Vitamin D’s Importance

Sunshine’s gifts extend well beyond vitamin D production. As discussed in the featured article by Sayer Ji,3 five of the many noteworthy properties of sunlight include:
  1. Pain-killing (analgesic) properties
  2. Increased subcutaneous fat metabolism
  3. Regulation of human lifespan (solar cycles appear to be able to directly affect the human genome, thereby influencing lifespan)
  4. Daytime sun exposure improves evening alertness
  5. Conversion to metabolic energy (i.e. we may “ingest” energy directly from the sun, like plants do)
When it comes to vitamin D production, the benefits are simply immeasurable. In fact, correcting a vitamin D deficiency may cut your risk of dying in half, according to an analysis of more than 10,000 individuals.
According to a January 2013 press release by Orthomolecular Medicine4, 3,600 medical papers with vitamin D in the title or abstract were published in 2012 alone, bringing the grand total to 33,800. Research to date shows vitamin D has far reaching benefits to your physical and mental health, with the following chart representing only the tip of the sunbeam.
Pregnancy outcomes (reduced risk of Cesarean section and pre-eclampsia)
Childhood language impairment
Cardiovascular disease
Type 1 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes
Bacterial and viral infections
Falls and bone fractures
16 different types of cancer
All-cause mortality
Another Way Sun Exposure Protects Your Heart Health
UVB exposure also improves your mood and energy level, helps regulate melatonin, and, as mentioned earlier, increases nitric oxide production5, which benefits your cardiovascular system. With regards to the latter:
“Richard Weller, Senior Lecturer in Dermatology, and colleagues, say the effect is such that overall, sun exposure could improve health and even prolong life, because the benefits of reducing blood pressure, cutting heart attacks and strokes, far outweigh the risk of getting skin cancer,” Medical News Today reports6.
Weller and colleagues found that the body's production of nitric oxide is separate from production of vitamin D... Human skin contains large stores of nitrite (NO2) and nitrate (NO3). The researchers note that while nitrate is "biologically inert", the action of sunlight can reduce it to active nitrite and nitric oxide (NO).They found that circulatory nitrate fell and nitrite rose during UV and heat exposure, but not during exposure to heat only. There was no difference in vitamin D levels.
Weller says in a statement that: 'We suspect that the benefits to heart health of sunlight will outweigh the risk of skin cancer. The work we have done provides a mechanism that might account for this, and also explains why dietary vitamin D supplements alone will not be able to compensate for lack of sunlight... If this confirms that sunlight reduces the death rate from all causes, we will need to reconsider our advice on sun exposure.'"
Skin Cancer, in Brief
Before we discuss melanoma, you need a basic understanding of the three most common types of skin cancer, each named for the type of cells affected:
  1. Basal cell carcinoma (BCC): Begins in the basal cell layer of the skin, typically on the face; the most common form of skin cancer and the most common type of cancer in humans; least likely skin cancer to spread.7
  2. Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC): Begins in the squamous cells, typically on the face, neck, ears, lips, and backs of hands; tends to grow and spread a bit more than BCC.
  3. Melanoma: Begins in the melanocytes (the cells that produce the pigment melanin, responsible for your tan); melanin protects the deeper layers of your skin from excess radiation. Melanoma is more likely than other types of skin cancer to spread to other parts of your body and causes more deaths than any other type of skin cancer.8
Don’t Fall for the Melanoma Myth
If you believe the lure of the sun is equivalent to the siren’s call for melanoma, you’ll be relieved to learn melanoma is not actually caused by sun exposure, unlike the other two types of skin cancer, BCC and SCC. Although the reported number of new cases of melanoma in the US has been reportedly increasing for more than 30 years,9 a landmark study in the British Journal of Dermatology10 suggests this apparent increase is a result of non-cancerous lesions being misclassified as “stage 1 melanoma.” In other words, people are being diagnosed with melanoma even when they have only a minimal, non-cancerous lesion, and these diagnoses are significantly skewing cancer statistics.11 The sun is nothing more than a scapegoat in this phenomenon of “increased melanoma.”
But this misdiagnosis is doing more than just skewing statistics—it’s causing a mountain of unnecessary melanoma surgeries. A study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology12 found that 90 percent of melanoma excisions end up NOT being melanoma at all. But if the sun doesn’t cause melanoma, then what does?
The REAL Role of the Sun in Melanoma
As with all serious diseases, there are multiple interacting factors that cause your immune system to go awry, such as nutrition, environmental toxins, stress, inadequate sleep, etc. But for melanoma, the sun does appear to have a significant role—melanoma may signify too little of it!
Studies show melanoma mortality actually decreases after UV exposure. Additionally, melanoma lesions do not predominate sun-exposed skin, which is why sunscreens have proven ineffective in preventing it. Exposure to sunlight, particularly UVB, is protective against melanoma—or rather, the vitamin D your body produces in response to UVB radiation is protective. The following passage comes from The Lancet:13
"Paradoxically, outdoor workers have a decreased risk of melanoma compared with indoor workers, suggesting that chronic sunlight exposure can have a protective effect."
And this from the British Medical Journal:14
“There is solid descriptive, quantitative, and mechanistic proof that ultraviolet rays cause the main skin cancers (basal and squamous). They develop in pale, sun exposed skin, are related to degree of exposure and latitude, are fewer with avoidance and protection, are readily produced experimentally, and are the overwhelmingly predominant tumor in xeroderma pigmentosum, where DNA repair of ultraviolet light damage is impaired. None of these is found with melanoma.”
The bottom line is, by avoiding the sun, your risk for vitamin D deficiency skyrockets, which increases your odds of developing melanoma and a multitude of other diseases. The risks associated with insufficient vitamin D are far greater than those posed by basal cell or squamous cell carcinomas, which are fairly benign by comparison, as you’ll see by reading on.
Vitamin D Could Prevent 90 Percent of Breast Cancers

Theories linking vitamin D deficiency to cancer have been tested and confirmed in more than 200 epidemiological studies, and understanding of its physiological basis stems from more than 2,500 laboratory studies. In the above interview, GrassrootsHealth founder Carole Baggerly believes 90 percent of ordinary breast cancer is related to vitamin D deficiency. In fact, breast cancer has been described as a “vitamin D deficiency syndrome.” The way vitamin D interferes with breast cancer’s ability to spread is by affecting the structure of those cells—without adequate vitamin D, they fall apart and are forced to “overmultiply” in order to survive.
Previous research has shown that optimizing your vitamin D levels can reduce your risk for as many as 16 different types of cancer, including pancreatic, lung, ovarian, breast, prostate, and skin cancers. A study of menopausal women showed that maintaining vitamin D serum levels of 40ng/ml lowers overall cancer risk by 77 percent.
Two recent papers in the journal Science Express15 shed light on how cancer might begin. A cancer cell can be created when unusual mutations occur in a small area of its DNA that controls and regulates its genes, as contrasted with mutations in the genes themselves. The mutations spur the cell to make telomerase. One of the functions of telomerase is to prevent telomere shortening, which leads to cell death. According to Harvard researchers, abundant telomerase is so important to cancers that it appears in nine out of ten.
In addition to being a strong cancer preventative, vitamin D is crucial for pregnant women and their babies, lowering the risk for preterm birth, low birth weight, and C-section. And sadly, 80 percent of pregnant women have inadequate vitamin D levels.
Low Vitamin D in Pregnancy May Increase Your Baby’s Risk for Multiple Sclerosis Later in Life
Sunshine is so important to your overall health that science is now finding a connection between the strength of your immune system and your birthday, called the “birth month effect.” If you were born in the spring, you are statistically more vulnerable to developing an autoimmune disease such as multiple sclerosis (MS), than if you were born in the fall.16, 17
Why would this be?
Some researchers suggest it’s related to a pregnant woman’s vitamin D levels during her baby’s gestation. April and May babies have been gestating during the colder, darker months, as opposed to November and December babies, who’ve been developing over the spring and summer. Now a study in JAMA Neurology18 shows this hunch may be correct, suggesting a mechanism related to thymic development. Another study suggests sun exposure and vitamin D may play roles in the CNS demyelination associated with MS.19
And the sun can lift your mood! New research published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine shows that Google searches for mental health related issues drop by 15 to 42 percent during the summer months, which could very well be related to the boost in vitamin D.20 Vitamin D deficiency is a known factor in cognitive impairment and dementia.
Practicing Safe Sunning

Safely exposing your bare skin to the sun is the best way to optimize your vitamin D levels, and is therefore the best protection against melanoma. Sunburn should be avoided at all cost. I recommend reading our article about safe sunning guidelines and listening to the video above for detailed instructions about how to do this safely and effectively.
Vitamin D3 is an oil-soluble steroid hormone (the term “vitamin” is a misnomer) that forms when your skin is exposed to UVB radiation from the sun or a safe tanning bed. When UVB strikes the surface of your skin, your skin converts a cholesterol derivative into vitamin D3. It takes up to 48 hours for this D3 to be absorbed into your bloodstream to raise your vitamin D levels. Therefore, it’s important to avoid washing your skin with soap for 48 hours after sun exposure. In case you do develop a sunburn, immediately apply raw aloe vera, as it’s one of the best skin remedies.
As a general guideline, research by GrassrootsHealth suggests that adults need about 8,000 IU’s per day to achieve a serum level of 40 ng/ml. If you opt for a vitamin D supplement, you also need to boost your intake of vitamin K2 through food and/or a supplement. How do you know if your vitamin D level is in the right range? The most important factor is having your vitamin D serum level tested every six months, as people vary widely in their response to ultraviolet exposure or oral D3 supplementation. Your goal is to reach a clinically relevant serum level of 50-70 ng/ml.
Overuse of Sunscreen May Turn You into a Melanoma Magnet
Following the advise of health officials’ to slather on sunscreen may increase your melanoma risk instead of decreasing it, which is certainly not what you want. Indeed, you never want to let yourself burn. However, if you practice safe sunning, you will avail yourself of all of the sun’s health benefits with none of the risk.
If you do use a sunscreen, please be careful about which product you choose as many sunscreen products contain chemicals you don’t want absorbed into your body. According to the Environmental Working Group’s 2012 Sunscreen Guide,21 about 75 percent of sunscreens contain potentially harmful ingredients, such as oxybenzone and retinyl palmitate. Avoid products with SPFs higher than 50, and make sure yours offers protection against both UVA and UVB rays.
Keep in mind SPF only protects against UVBs—but it’s the UVAs that increase your risk for skin cancer and are responsible for photoaging your skin. Recall that it’s the UVBs that stimulate your vitamin D production, so you don’t want to block out too many of them.
Using an “internal sunscreen” is an alternative to topical sunblock agents. Astaxanthin—a potent antioxidant—has been found to offer effective protection against sun damage when taken as a daily supplement. It can also be used topically and a number of topical sunscreen products contain it. Some sunscreens are also starting to use astaxanthin as an ingredient to protect your skin from damage. As an alternative, you can cover up with lightweight clothing to protect yourself. Sometimes we forget about the simple things, like simply wearing a hat.
For the latest information about vitamin D, please visit our Vitamin D News and Information page.
How Vitamin D Performance Testing Can Help Optimize Your Health

Additionally, a robust and growing body of research clearly shows that vitamin D is absolutely critical for good health and disease prevention. Vitamin D affects your DNA through vitamin D receptors (VDRs), which bind to specific locations of the human genome. Scientists have identified nearly 3,000 genes that are influenced by vitamin D levels, and vitamin D receptors have been found throughout the human body.
Is it any wonder then that no matter what disease or condition is investigated, vitamin D appears to play a crucial role? This is why I am so excited about the D*Action Project by GrassrootsHealth. It is showing how you can take action today on known science with a consensus of experts without waiting for institutional lethargy. It has shown how by combining the science of measurement (of vitamin D levels) with the personal choice of taking action and, the value of education about individual measures that one can truly be in charge of their own health.
In order to spread this health movement to more communities, the project needs your involvement. This is an ongoing campaign during the month of February, and will become an annual event.
To participate, simply purchase the D*Action Measurement Kit and follow the registration instructions included. (Please note that 100 percent of the proceeds from the kits go to fund the research project. I do not charge a single dime as a distributor of the test kits.)
As a participant, you agree to test your vitamin D levels twice a year during a five-year program, and share your health status to demonstrate the public health impact of this nutrient. There is a $65 fee every 6 months for your sponsorship of the project, which includes a test kit to be used at home, and electronic reports on your ongoing progress. You will get a follow up email every six months reminding you "it's time for your next test and health survey."

New Study Links Wheat To Weight Gain and Diabetes


Posted on: Saturday, June 29th 2013 at 4:30 pm
Written By: Sayer Ji, Founder

A new animal study published in the journal PLoS sheds light on a possible mechanism behind the weight- and diabetes-promoting properties of wheat observed in humans, and perhaps offers some vindication for Dr. William Davis' New York Times best-selling but heavily criticized book 'Wheat Belly,' wherein the argument is made that wheat is a major contributing factor to the epidemic of obesity and diabetes presently afflicting wealthier, gluten-grain consuming nations.
In the new study, researchers from The Bartholin Institute, Copenhagen, Denmark, explored the role that gliadin, a difficult to digest class of proteins within wheat, plays in promoting weight gain and insulin secretion in both animal and cell models, finding that gliadin-treated mice gained 20% more weight (by day 100) than gliadin-free controls, and that gliadin fragments induce insulin secretion in pancreatic beta cells, the cells responsible for producing insulin, and which in type 1 diabetes are destroyed or rendered dysfunctional.
Gliadin does not break down easily in the body because they are extremely hydrophobic ("water fearing"), and contain disulfide bonds (the same kind found in human hair and vulcanized rubber);[1] as a result, undigested wheat gliadin fragments can enter through the intestinal wall, gaining systemic access to the human body. This can result in inflammatory and autoimmune conditions, among many other possible negative health effects (note: we have documented over 200 adverse health effects associated with wheat exposure).
Gliadin fragments have even been found in mother's milk, indicating they are capable of traveling freely throughout the body (not unlike another wheat toxin known as WGA), and can therefore affect the health of newborns. Indeed, the association between gluten consumption and conditions such as juvenile-onset type 1 diabetes is well established in the biomedical literature, with 11 studies on the topic indexed on alone: see Wheat Type 1 Diabetes Connection.
The researchers referenced previous experiments demonstrating a gluten-free diet lowers diabetes incidence in non-obese diabetic (NOD) mice from 64% for chow fed controls, to 15% for the gluten-free group,[2] with a further 6%  reduction by keeping the mother on a gluten-free diet during pregnancy. [3]
While the new study did not find gliadin treatment "caused" type 1 diabetes, they did conclude that based on their observations of gliadin's weight-promoting and insulin secretion inducing effects "[G]liadin fragments may contribute to the beta-cell hyperactivity observed prior to the development of type 1 diabetes." They also described two implications of their findings: 1) gluten peptides may cause higher insulin secretion at basal glucose levels. 2) gluten peptides may lower the insulin response to glucose over time. In other words, gluten may contribute to the development and exacerbation of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, by causing both and/or either beta cell overstimulation and burn out (type 1) and insulin resistance (type 2).
The researchers describe a case of type 1 diabetes put into remission through a gluten-free diet:
Observations implicate gluten's influences on the development of diabetes in humans. A particular compelling T1D case describes a patient, who remained healthy, devoid of insulin therapy for 36 months, after being prescribed a gluten-free diet at the time of T1D diagnosis. His stable fasting blood glucose levels at 5.8 mmol/l, indicate that a gluten-free diet may be a method to protect beta-cell function in patients. However, the protective effect remains to be tested in clinical trials of T1D patients. This gluten-free diet approach may enhance beta-cell rest, by circumventing gliadin-induced increase in beta-cell activity, which we have described in this study.
The researchers also conclude that a "...gluten-free diet may also be beneficial in preserving beta-cell function in type 2 diabetes (T2D)."
This study, like many that have come before it, indicate that reducing and especially eliminating wheat and related gluten-containing grains from the diet is the best strategy for preventing the development of diabetes and weight gain associated with elevated insulin levels. Learn more about the dangers of wheat by reading the Dark Side of Wheat or exploring our Wheat and Gluten education page.
Also, consider that even after severe damage is done to the beta cells in the pancreas, resulting in type 1 diabetes, there are plenty of natural compounds that have been studied to stimulate beta cell regeneration, opening the door to natural alternatives to conventional treatment. Our recent article on the topic addresses this research in greater detail:  10 Natural Substances That Could Help Cure Type 1 Diabetes

[1] Ji, Sayer The Dark Side of Wheat: New Perspectives on Celiac Disease and Wheat Intolerance, 2008
[2] D P Funda, A Kaas, T Bock, H Tlaskalová-Hogenová, K Buschard. Gluten-free diet prevents diabetes in NOD mice. Diabetes Metab Res Rev. 1999 Sep-Oct;15(5):323-7. PMID: 10585617
[3] David P Funda, Anne Kaas, Helena Tlaskalová-Hogenová, Karsten Buschard. Gluten-free but also gluten-enriched (gluten+) diet prevent diabetes in NOD mice; the gluten enigma in type 1 diabetes. Diabetes Metab Res Rev. 2008 Jan-Feb;24(1):59-63. PMID: 17607660

Sayer Ji is an author, researcher, lecturer, and advisory board member of the National Health Federation.

He founded in 2008 in order to provide the world an open access, evidence-based resource supporting natural and integrative modalities. It is internationally recognized as the largest and most widely referenced health resource of its kind.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Ketogenic Diet in Combination with Calorie Restriction and Hyperbaric Treatment Offer New Hope in Quest for Non-Toxic Cancer Treatment

By Dr. Mercola
Cancer is now so common it affects about one of two of us and most will face it at some point in their lives, either personally or through a friend or relative. Compelling research indicates that the answer to our burgeoning cancer epidemic could be far closer than previously imagined, in the form of a ketogenic diet.
Personally, I believe this is an absolutely crucial facet of cancer prevention and treatment, for whatever type of cancer you’re trying to address, and hopefully, some day it will be adopted as a first line of treatment by mainstream medicine.
A ketogenic diet calls for eliminating all but non-starchy vegetable carbohydrates, and replacing them with high amounts of healthy fats and low to moderate amounts of high-quality protein.
The premise is that since cancer cells need glucose to thrive, and carbohydrates turn into glucose in your body, then lowering the glucose level in your blood through carb and protein restriction literally starves the cancer cells to death. Additionally, low protein intake tends to minimize the mTOR pathway that accelerates cell proliferation and lowers the amount of one particular amino acid, glutamine, which is also known to drive certain cancers.
This type of diet is what I recommend for everyone, whether you have cancer or not, because it will help you convert from carb burning mode to fat burning, which will help you optimize your weight and prevent virtually all chronic degenerative disease.
The Ketogenic Diet—An Excellent Approach to Cancer Prevention and Treatment
Dr. Dominic D’Agostino, PhD is an assistant professor at the University of South Florida College of Medicine.
He teaches courses in molecular pharmacology and physiology, and maintains involvement in several studies researching metabolic treatments for neurological disorders such as seizures, Alzheimer’s, ALS, and cancer—all of which are metabolically linked.
His entry in to this field began when, in 2007, the Office of Naval Research funded his study into seizures related to oxygen toxicity experienced by Navy SEAL divers using closed-circuit breathing apparatus. At this juncture, he came across the ketogenic diet, which has already been confirmed as an effective treatment for epilepsy and a variety of seizure disorders.
“I came across the work of Thomas Seyfried,” he says. “I found a large amount of evidence that suggested that cancer was metabolically unique. Genetically, it was very heterogeneous. There are a host of different genetic anomalies in the cancer cells, but one characteristic is that it had this ubiquitous metabolic phenotype, which was aerobic glycolysis.
Even in the presence of oxygen, it was shown that cancer cells continue to pump out lactate, suggesting that they’re fuelling their metabolism from excess glucose consumption.
From my perspective, the only reason cancer cells would be pumping out lactate and deriving energy from glucose at such a high rate would be because they are metabolically compromised with mitochondrial deficiency.”
A mounting body of evidence suggests cancer is responsive to therapeutic ketosis—a natural physiologic state induced during prolonged states of decreased glucose. Nutritional ketosis involves restricting carbohydrates in order to decrease the availability of glucose. Restricting carbs also increases production of ketone bodies from your liver. Nearly all of your normal cells have the flexibility to readily adapt to using ketone bodies for fuel in lieu of glucose, but cancer cells do not have this metabolic flexibility. Hence, they effectively starve to death while all your normal cells actually operate more efficiently than before.
Another Key Component for Cancer Prevention and Treatment: Calorie Restriction
When you restrict carbohydrates, you prevent spikes in blood sugar, insulin and IGF-1 from occurring. These spikes are actually very pro-inflammatory, and can activate oncogenes (genes that contribute to the conversion of a normal cell into a cancerous cell), and enhance both cancer cell proliferation and the metastatic process.
But here’s a key point: While carb restriction will reduce these spikes, it will not have a major impact on baseline levels of blood glucose, unless you also restrict your calorie and protein intake. So for cancer prevention and treatment, carb restriction must be combined with calorie restriction and moderate protein restriction in order to effectively “starve” cancer cells of their preferred fuel (glucose and glutamine).
“The ketogenic diet is, I think, a very good strategy to make calorie restriction tolerable,” Dr. D’Agostino says. “Because when your brain in particular is craving glucose, and, say, for example, you go on a calorie-restricted diet, but it’s a high-carbohydrate diet, you’re still getting fluctuations in blood glucose. Your brain goes through these intermittent periods of glucose deprivation and you get very hungry. It’s not a very comfortable feeling.
Nutritional ketosis, which occurs with carbohydrate restriction and is further enhanced with calorie restriction, forces the physiological shift from a glucose-based metabolism to a fatty acid and ketone metabolism. When your body is, shall we say, keto-adapted, your brain energy metabolism is more stable and your mood is more stable. It may take a few weeks to adapt physiologically to this. But nutritional ketosis can be maintained and sustained with carbohydrate restriction and is further enhanced with calorie restriction.
The total calories really need to be restricted, and also protein. Protein is gluconeogenic. There are gluconeogenic amino acids in protein. If protein is at, say, for example, two or three grams per kilogram per day that is probably going to feed in through the gluconeogenic pathway and contribute to glutaminolysis. It will be hard to deplete your glycogen stores, which is necessary to drive the ketogenesis in your liver.”
How Much Protein Is Advisable?
So to summarize, in order to maintain and sustain nutritional ketosis, you need to decrease both carbohydrates and protein. But how much protein is enough, or too much?
As Dr. D’Agostino mentions above, eating two to three grams of protein per kilogram of bodyweight—which translates to 100-300 grams of protein per day for some people—is an enormous overload. Many bodybuilders will consume this much though, and many non-athletes as well. The bodybuilding industry has fostered the idea that you need tons of protein to build muscle, but as Dr. D’Agostino explains, if you restrict protein, and replace both the lost protein and carbs with healthful fats, the elevation in your blood ketones will have a protein-sparing, or anti-catabolic, effect.
“It will help you preserve lean body mass and a physical performance during a calorie deficit. This is why the ketogenic diet is an effective strategy for losing weight and retaining muscle, especially if it’s complemented with resistance exercise or some kind of physical activity,” he says.
Your end goal needs to be taken into consideration here though. A bodybuilder’s purpose for embarking on a ketogenic diet will be different from someone with cancer or a seizure disorder. In the latter case, you’d need to be far more strict with reducing protein in order to achieve and maintain ketosis.
Personally, I’m intrigued with the concept promoted by one of my mentors, Dr. Ron Rosedale, who advocates restricting protein to one gram per kilogram of lean body mass. Typically, for someone like myself, that amounts to about 50-70 grams of protein per day. The reason he promotes this so much is because of the stimulatory effect protein (branch-chained amino acids specifically) has on mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR)—a pathway that seems to be largely responsible for the pathology seen in cancer growth.
When you reduce protein to just what your body needs, mTOR remains inhibited, which helps lessen your chances of cancer growth.
“I agree that mTOR is an important signal once you have cancer,” Dr. D’Agostino says. “The amino acid leucine is a powerful activator of the mTOR pathway, and stimulates skeletal muscle protein synthesis. Now, if a normal healthy person consumes boluses of leucine [a branch-chained amino acid], say five grams a couple of times a day, which a lot of bodybuilders and athletes do, can this enhance cancer growth?
This is an interesting question, and one that I’ve been researching. We’re about to set up a study where we give large doses of branch-chained amino acids in a metastatic model of cancer. My opinion is that branch-chained amino acids, which activate mTOR, in a normal healthy person are not counterproductive. They do not increase one’s susceptibility to cancer and may even prevent muscle wasting (e.g. cachexia) associated with cancer.”
The 'Meat' of the Ketogenic Diet—FATS
Most people who follow a ketogenic diet inadvertently restrict their calories without actually reaping the metabolic benefits of a calorie deficit, which include reductions in blood glucose, insulin, and triglycerides. The reason for this is that they don’t replace the carbs (and protein) they’ve eliminated with high enough amounts of healthy fats.
“Paradoxically, when you’re eating more fat, your blood fats will go down, due to a calorie deficit, and HDL [so-called ‘good’ cholesterol] goes up. Almost everyone that I see on these high-fat ketogenic diets has improved HDL levels,” Dr. D’Agostino says.
Now, when we say increase the fat, we’re not talking about the most common fat that people eat, which are primarily highly processed vegetable oils that are full of omega-6 fats, or trans fats found in French fries and doughnuts. We’re talking about high-quality fats like avocados, butter, coconut oil, macadamia nuts, and olives. These types of fats, which Dr. Rosedale believes are metabolically neutral because they don’t tend to trigger hormonal signaling events like leptin, insulin, and the mTOR pathway.
“I think a lot of the fats can be used in place of protein. And fats are very protein sparing, decreasing your need for protein,” Dr. D’Agostino says.
Bear in mind that while a traditional ketogenic diet calls for quite a bit of dairy products, dairy can actually be problematic and may prevent many of the health benefits that you can get from the ketogenic diet described by D’Agostino and Seyfried. Lactose is a sugar made from galactose and glucose that is found in milk, making up anywhere from two to eight percent of milk by weight. These extra sugars can be problematic when seeking to lose weight or treat cancer, even if from raw organic sources. Dairy fat is acceptable (e.g. sour cream, butter, etc.), but foods high in dairy protein or lactose should be minimized or avoided.
Why You’d Want to Become a Fat-Burner
Your body can burn two types of fuel: fat and carbs. In my estimation, I suspect about 99 percent of Americans are adapted to burning carbs as their primary fuel. It’s important to realize that when your body is adapted to burning carbs, you’re quite inflexible, metabolically speaking. Without fail, your body will be screaming for food about every two to three hours. These kinds of hunger pangs vanish once you become fat adapted, however. Then you can go all day and not be hungry, because you have far more fat in your body to burn than glucose.
So how do you achieve this metabolic switch-over?
In my experience, intermittent fasting, where you gradually restrict the window of time during which you eat food down to about six to eight hours, is one of the most effective ways to make this transition.
“I think from a practical standpoint, the important question is what’s a person going to follow? From my perspective, the biggest hurdle here is compliance; compliance to a dietary strategy that makes calorie restriction feasible and possible. And you know, carbohydrate restriction, high-fat diet, and intermittent fasting is one way to achieve that,” Dr. D’Agostino says.
“There are a lot of advantages to this pattern of intermittent fasting. I think that it is a good strategy to promote metabolic health and to maintain nutritional ketosis, if you can adapt to it. In some lifestyles, people cannot readily adapt to it. But I’ve found that most people can if they give it a try for at least several weeks. Most people are resistant. Even with people that are resistant- once they try it, they’re amazed at how much better they feel.”
It’s not an ideal course for everyone, however. As a general rule, intermittent fasting is contraindicated if you’re:
  • An elite athlete
  • Pregnant
  • Suffer with adrenal stress
  • Already at a low BMI (< 19)
Hyperbaric Treatment Works Synergistically with Ketogenic Diet Against Cancer
Dr. D’Agostino recently published a paper in the journal PLoS One, titled “The Ketogenic Diet and Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Prolong Survival in Mice with Systemic Metastatic Cancer1.” Most people who die of cancer die from the metastatic process, rather than from the tumor itself. There’s really no treatment or cure for metastatic cancer. Dr. D’Agostino’s team has demonstrated that the ketogenic diet by itself can extend survival in animal models of metastatic cancer, but when it’s combined with hyperbaric oxygen therapy three times per week, there is an additive effect2.
“You get a significant reduction in tumor growth, decrease in tumor size, and significant extension of life when the therapeutic ketosis achieved through the ketogenic diet is combined with hyperbaric oxygen,” he says.
“Tumors thrive in a low-oxygen environment. As a tumor grows, it exceeds its ability to supply oxygen to the center of the tumor. That low level of oxygen, called hypoxia, further activates the oncogenes; cancer promoting genes. It activates things like HIF-1-alpha and VEGF. IGF-1 signaling goes up. Hyperbaric oxygen can reverse tumor hypoxia intermittently. In doing that, it can actually turn off the oncogenes. There are published reports on this.
... [T]he tumor thrives in a low-oxygen environment, and it’s adapted to that low-oxygen environment. When you saturate a tumor with oxygen, because the mitochondria are damaged, it overproduces oxygen free radicals in the form of superoxide anion. This oxygen-induced increase in free radicals can actually cause the tumor to kill itself.”
How to Determine if You’re in Ketosis
To help you determine if you’re in ketosis, you can purchase a blood ketone and glucose meter, both of which are available in most drug stores. also sells them. Dr. D’Agostino recommends the Precision Xtra by Abbott Labs. Their ketone test strips are called Precision Xtra. Glucose meter strips typically sell for about 50 cents per strip, while ketone strips can range from $3-6 each.
 “Another option is the CardioChek meter. This is an interesting meter, because it can measure glucose, ketones, HDL, LDL, triglycerides, and a number of things.”
By testing your glucose and ketones, you can monitor your response to a nutritional intervention, and then adjust your calories and the macronutrient ratios to optimize your body to be in what Dr. D’Agostino calls the “metabolic zone.” The metabolic zone is defined as sustained hypoglycemia (55-75 mg/dl) with elevated blood ketones (>2 mM). 
“If you can produce sustained hypoglycemia with carbohydrate and calorie restriction and simultaneously elevate blood ketones, it actually makes the hypoglycemia tolerable,” he explains. “The ketones replace the glucose as the primary energy fuel for your brain. It basically keeps your brain metabolism optimized and prevents fluctuations in your mood and your energy levels, if you can sustain therapeutic ketosis with a properly balanced ketogenic diet.”
As you implement the ketogenic diet, you can just check your glucose and ketones once a week if you find the cost of the strips to be prohibitively expensive for more frequent testing. Typically, if your blood glucose stays at 75 or below with carbohydrate restriction, there’s a good chance that you’ll be in nutritional ketosis, which is where you want to be.
If you’re in ketosis by evidence of ketones in your urine, you’re in a situation where you likely have depleted glycogen stores in your liver. This means you’re maintaining a low blood glucose, which is good. The driver for hepatic ketogenesis is low blood glucose and low glycogen levels in the liver, as this means your body is depleted of glycogen. Your body will not really make adequate ketones (>2 mM), and they won’t spill over in your urine, unless you’ve achieved that level of glycogen depletion. So remember, when your levels of blood ketones are 1-3 millimolar (mM) that’s a good biomarker of nutritional ketosis.

More Information
While Dr. D’Agostino does not treat patients, he has plenty of resources to offer for anyone interested in learning more. If you have cancer, you could bring these resources to your oncologist for discussion. For everyone else, a ketogenic diet is an excellent way to optimize your health and prevent chronic diseases of all kinds. Helpful books and websites where you can learn more include:
  • KetogenicDietResource.com3. This site is maintained by a friend of Dr. D’Agostino. Here you can also find a ketogenic diet handbook for cancer patients called Fight Cancer with a Ketogenic Diet
  • Dr. D’Agostino’s website KetoNutrition.org4 contains a wide variety of therapy resources for patients
  • Miriam Kalamian, EdM, MS, CNS offers ketogenic diet consulting services for cancer patients. For information, see dietarytherapies.com5
  • The book, Cancer as a Metabolic Disease: On the Origin, Management, and Prevention of Cancer, by Thomas Seyfried
  • The book, The Cantin Ketogenic Diet: For Cancer, Type I Diabetes & Other Ailments, by Elaine Cantin, which specifically outlines a dairy-free ketogenic diet
Last but not least, ketoresearchchem.com6 is a resource for scientists interested in ketone research. Please note that the ketone supplements offered there are strictly for research only, and are NOT available for sale to cancer patients.
The Ketogenic Diet for Optimal Health and Disease Prevention
I firmly believe the ketogenic diet can be a tremendously beneficial strategy for optimizing your health and disease prevention and treatment plan, including cancer. It’s already a well-established first line of treatment against many seizure disorders. While most of your body’s cells have the metabolic flexibility to use either fat or sugar for fuel, cancer cells differ in that they cannot use fat (ketones) to survive—they need glucose, and a low-oxygen environment.
Back in the 1930’s, Dr. Otto Warburg actually received a Nobel Prize for his discovery that sugar is the primary fuel substrate for cancer cells. The “Warburg effect” in cancer cells is the basis of positron emission tomography (18-FDG PET), a medical imaging technique to visualize cancer. Oncologists have ignored this vital information for over 80 years and don’t use it therapeutically, which in my view is just reprehensible malpractice... So many people suffer needlessly because they don’t have access to this simple nutritional therapeutic strategy, which, in a nutshell, takes advantage of this intrinsic metabolic differential between healthy and cancerous cells.
Your body has a limited storage of sugar, stored in the form of glycogen, typically in your muscles and liver. These glycogen stores are depleted in about 12 hours or so, at which point your body has to switch to burning fat. This is part of what makes intermittent fasting so beneficial, because by not eating for 12-18 hours or longer each day, your body shifts into this fat-burning mode. While frequent hunger is a major issue for most people who are reliant on burning carbs for energy, fat-burners can go all day, or a number of days if necessary, without food, since most of us have plenty of fat to be used for fuel.
While most people can still eat some carbs, along with moderate amounts of high-quality protein, those with cancer need to be far more strict. Cancer patients also need to combine a ketogenic diet with calorie restriction to achieve glucose depletion that will effectively starve the cancer cells. Recent research also shows that adding hyperbaric oxygen treatment will dramatically reduce cancer growth and shrink tumors. All in all, I can find no drawbacks to eating this way, which is why I highly recommend it for everyone.






Friday, June 28, 2013

5 Awesome Spices to Cook With for a Healthier Life

5 Awesome Spices to Cook With for a Healthier Life5 Awesome Spices to Cook With for a Healthier Life

June 15th, 2013 
Updated 06/15/2013 at 3:07 am

Cooking your own food is a great way to make sure you know exactly what goes into it, and adding a few health-boosting spices can make a home-cooked meal even more savory. Fortunately many of the spices we use to make our plates a gustatory and olfactory delight are also very beneficial to our bodies, too. Here are 5 awesome spices you should be cooking with all the time.
1. Cilantro
Used in numerous Latin, Asian and Mediterranean dishes, cilantro offers dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, and essential oils as well as antioxidants that help to fight a long list of diseases. One ounce of cilantro provides about 38% of the daily recommended value of vitamin A and 109% of the RDA for vitamin K. It is also a rich source of Vitamins c and B-6, as well as numerous trace minerals like potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, and manganese. Cilantro is an analgesic, and aphrodisiac, has fungicidal properties and also helps with digestion.
2. Ginger
Ginger in used in countless dishes for delectable taste, but the health benefits ginger may just outweigh its delightful flavor. Ginger can be used as a detoxifier and can even prevent stomach ailments from eating ‘bad’ seafood. Perhaps most notable is ginger’s anti-inflammatory properties, which helps to reduce pain and swelling, purifies the blood, and protects against anti-inflammatory-related disease. It has been used in the East for centuries for everything from increasing energy to treating a stuffy nose and head congestion.

3. Turmeric
If you love curries, then turmeric can be a great spice to add to your rice dishes, vegetables, and curried foods. This super-spice comes from tubular roots that grow profusely in India, and its bright orange color tells of its medicinal benefits. Turmeric has been known to be better at reducing inflammation and pain in the body than Motrin. It is antiseptic and antibiotic, is a natural pain-killer and cox-2 inhibitor, treats depression in Chinese medicine, reduces many forms of cancer, slows mental dementia in Alzheimer’s patients, stops the growth of new blood vessels in unwanted tumors and speeds up wound healing. This powerful spice is a must-have for any health conscious cook.
4. Garlic
Like turmeric and ginger, garlic is extremely beneficial. This stand-by spice for many gourmet kitchens is a natural antioxidant, helps support gut health, is full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, and can even be put in your pet’s food to keep fleas away.
5. Pine Nuts
Roasted pine nuts over baked salmon or drizzled on a salad are not only delectable, but also health-promoting. Pine nuts are a great source of non-animal protein that is full of magnesium for more energy, contain lot’s of vitamin D, C, and A, iron, pineolic acid, as well as lutein for better vision, strong bones, and boosted immunity.
Additional Sources:

Prajnaparamita Sutra chanted to a beat in Tibetan by Jigme Khyenste Rinpoche

A Pox on the CDC’s Vaccination Agenda: The Rise of Herpes Zoster (Shingles)

Posted on: Friday, June 28th 2013 at 10:30 am
Written By: Sayer Ji, Founder

A new systematic review published in PLoS titled, "Herpes Zoster Risk Reduction through Exposure to Chickenpox Patients: A Systematic Multidiscplinary Review," confirms that the widespread adoption of  chickenpox vaccine over the past 30 years, which has resulted in a decline in chickenpox cases associated with infection from the wild-circulating virus, has lead to a concerning increase in the incidents of herpes zoster (shingles), a far more serious expression of chickenpox virus (varicella zoster) infection.
This new review brings to the forefront a few critically important questions: are natural infectious challenges essential for establishing a healthy immune system, and is the chicken pox vaccine doing more harm than good?   
The Vaccines Don't Work As Advertised
Despite the largely politically- and economically-motivated immunization agenda of the CDC, there is a growing body of clinical research establishing that vaccination does not effectively 'improve upon' or 'replace' natural immunity in the way that the masses have been made to assume; to the contrary, there are now hundreds of diseases that have been linked to commonly administered childhood and adult vaccines; and when we say "linked" we don't mean anecdotally, but in the biomedical literature itself [see the data set establishing the dangers of vaccines]. Additionally, the highly respected Cochrane Database Review repeatedly contradicts the CDC's claims by demonstrating that there is a conspicuous lack of unequivocal scientific evidence supporting their claim that influenza vaccines are safe and effective. Even worse, despite the hundreds of thousands who receive them every year, virtually no research has been performed showing them safe in children under two, the most vulnerable population.
It is therefore no surprise nor secret that the chickenpox vaccine has failed to live up to its promises.  Even the CDC's Manual for the Surveillance of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases admits that "As vaccination rates have increased, the majority of varicella cases now occur among vaccinated persons."[1] Wouldn't an effective chickenpox vaccine result in the majority of varicella cases occurring in non-vaccinated persons?
The Vaccines Cause The Disease They Are Supposed To Prevent
Indeed, since the introduction of universal chickenpox vaccination in the US in 1995, the vaccine has been found to have only limited effectiveness,[2] with 1 in 5 children receiving the original vaccine experiencing "breakthrough" infections."[3] This is why, at present, children on the CDC's immunization schedule receive two doses. But increasing the number of doses isn't working either.  For example, in 2006, a chickenpox outbreak occurred in a population of Arkansas schoolchildren with 97% immunization compliance. When the researchers looked at the difference in outbreak cases between one-dose and two-dose children, none could be found.[4]
Another glaring problem is the fact that the chickenpox vaccine itself is clearly a source of infection. The CDC states "Chickenpox vaccines contain weakened live VZV, which may cause latent (dormant) infection."[5]  When the goal is to prevent infection, injecting children with the very infectious and communicable pathogen the vaccine is supposed to prevent seems like the very definition of quackery, does it not? We forget that there was a time when injecting infectious disease material into otherwise healthy children was considered a bad idea. And then there were the hundreds of millions of years of bodily evolution where no such option existed, but which nonetheless enabled us through our own well-adapted innate and acquired immune apparatus to survive as a species up unto this point in time, where now we flagrantly cast our biological inheritance to the wind in favor of mass experimentation with 60+ vaccines given to our childen by age 6.
Buy One Get One: The Hidden Pathogens In Live Vaccines
Another problem is the use of euphemisms like  'weakened' or 'attenuated' to describe live-virus containing vaccines, implying that they are less virulent. One of the basic methods used to create these 'weakened' vaccines is to serially passage the infectious agent through both and/or either animal and human biological fluids (e.g. bovine serum) and cells, giving the vaccine master seed stock an opportunity to become contaminated along the way with hidden disease vectors, including cancer-causing viruses.
Endogenous retroviruses, for instance, are RNA-based 'fossil viruses' that incorporated their genetic material into the infected species' germline DNA many million years ago, and now harmless to that species, make up a significant portion of the total DNA sequences within most animal genomes. For example, the human genome is believed to be 8% endogenous retroviral in origin.[6] These retroviruses are normally not capable of infecting other species, but during the vaccine manufacturing process where viable biological materials from different species are often cultured together, or undergo accidental admixture, they can become reactivated and infectious to another species. One of the most carefully guarded secrets within the history of vaccinology is that the original vaccine master seed stocks, whose components are either still being used to create live vaccines, or which have contaminated oral vaccines still be used today, contain retroviruses and other hidden pathogens. One reason for this terrible fact is that reverse transcriptase was not even discovered until 1970, so there was no way of knowing there was a problem when the original vaccines were being developed. There is also the case of the simian virus known as SV-40 which contaminated the original oral polio vaccines, and which is responsible for the infection of millions around the world with a cancer-causing virus, and which is still being passed down from parent-to-child today. [See the Simian Virus 40 research here]
They Know "Weakened" Vaccines Are Not Safe
These problems and controversies drove the vaccine industry to develop presumably "safer" vaccines, such as the "killed," "toxoid," "subunit," "conjugate," and now DNA-based vaccines. The earnest push towards these latter "improvements" tacitly reveal the original danger behind using the so-called "weakened" vaccines. And nowhere is this problem more evident today than in India where despite the Global Polio Eradication Initiative's claims of "mission accomplished" in that country, over 45,000 reported vaccine-strain induced cases of polio-like disease have been reported as occurring in 2011 alone.  For the same reason that the wealthier countries like the US already phased them out, increasingly educated Indians are now outraged to learn that the billions of doses of oral polio vaccine given to their children actually contain a live virus twice as lethal as the wild one that has supposedly been eradicated. If only their proponents and active promoters, like the Dalai Lama, knew the harm they are capable of doing.
Chicken pox vaccine is also grown with living cells from aborted fetal tissue. Known as "diploid" vaccines, they carry their own set of biological and obviously moral risks.  As far as the precautionary principle stands, injecting virus-infected human cells, alongside powerful immunotoxic adjuvants, into the bodies of healthy children in order to 'protect' them from a benign, immune-strengthening bout of chickenpox, sounds like the very definition of insanity. But as it stands today, millions of parents and their pediatricians consider this not only sound practice, but necessary to prevent infecting others.
Instead of looking to the origin of the herpes zoster problem: both the (paradoxical) infectivity and the lack of efficacy of the chickenpox vaccine itself, the vaccine industry and its cheerleading arm, the CDC, are now promoting a new "shingles" vaccine which contains more of the same: another live varicella virus. And already there is indication that the shingles vaccine causes ... you guessed it ... reactivation of the herpes zoster virus. Read a 2012 case study on this connection here.

[1] Lopez, Adriana; Schmid, Scott; Bialek, Stephanie (2011). "Chapter 17: Varicella". In Roush, Sandra W.; McIntyre, Lynne; Baldy, Linda M. Manual for the Surveillance of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (5th ed.). Atlanta GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
[2] Sandra S Chaves, Paul Gargiullo, John X Zhang, Rachel Civen, Dalya Guris, Laurene Mascola, Jane F Seward. Loss of vaccine-induced immunity to varicella over time. N Engl J Med. 2007 Mar 15 ;356(11):1121-9. PMID: 17360990
[3] Sandra S Chaves, John Zhang, Rachel Civen, Barbara M Watson, Tina Carbajal, Dana Perella, Jane F Seward. Varicella disease among vaccinated persons: clinical and epidemiological characteristics, 1997-2005. J Infect Dis. 2008 Mar 1 ;197 Suppl 2:S127-31. PMID: 18419385
[4] Philip L Gould, Jessica Leung, Connie Scott, D Scott Schmid, Helen Deng, Adriana Lopez, Sandra S Chaves, Meredith Reynolds, Linda Gladden, Rafael Harpaz, Sandra Snow. An outbreak of varicella in elementary school children with two-dose varicella vaccine recipients--Arkansas, 2006.Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2009 Aug;28(8):678-81. PMID: 19593254

June 28, 2013 Will this tree sap make losing weight easier?

June 28, 2013
Will this tree sap make losing
weight easier?
Could losing weight be as simple as ingesting a special fiber made from tree sap? According to a recent report, the answer is yes.

The researchers who wrote this report divided 120 healthy females into two groups. They gave one of the groups pectin. They gave the second group 30 grams of gum Arabic daily for six weeks. Those in the gum Arabic group saw their body mass index decrease by 0.32 and their body fat percentage drop by 2.18% compared to the “control” group. They did experience some mild side effects from the gum Arabic. But these side effects (bloating and nausea) went away after one week. The researchers said gum Arabic definitely needs to be used to treat obesity.

A few years ago I reported that gum Arabic, as a prebiotic, can help modify intestinal bacteria in your favor! We now know that intestinal bugs are partly responsible for weight control. Certain bugs can generate more calorie absorption from otherwise indigestible foods.

Why I call this "natural
body armor" against
inflammatory fires...

Not only does it contain 9 of the best nutrients for taming inflammation, it includes them at levels up to three times higher than other supplements.

Plus, it's the only one to include a remarkable discovery that quenches the fire in every part of your body - so you get fast relief.

Learn More Now
Perhaps gum Arabic’s effect is this modification, or simply some other beneficial modification of what goes on in your gut. Another effect could be modulating the absorption of calories to blunt a huge insulin response that turns your calories into abdominal fat.

Gum Arabic is a natural gum made from the hardened sap of two species of acacia tree. It is cheap and readily available in health food stores and online. As I mentioned, it might cause some minor stomach discomfort when you first start taking it. But this should go away after a week.

Yours for better health and medical freedom,

Robert J. Rowen, MD
REF: Nutr J. 2012;1:111.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Could the Cause of Your Illness Be Right Under Your Nose?


By Will and Susan Revak of

Do you ever wonder what compels a person to take and refute decades of “established” research all in the name of helping humanity?
We recently came across a new piece of information about one of our heroes, Dr. Weston A Price.
Many readers of this blog will already be familiar with who Dr. Price was and the gift to humanity his research continues to provide.  After all, we couldn’t perform this research now as we don’t have the isolated cultures still intact!
While most of us are now familiar with the research Dr. Price performed with isolated cultures that he highlighted in his landmark book, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, some of you may not be aware of the research Dr. Price did with embedding root canal teeth under the skin of rabbits. What could have provoked Dr. Price to conduct this study? What could have compelled a practicing dentist to shift his focus to research? Read on…
As a practicing dentist, Dr. Price once performed a root canal on a 16 year old young man. This young man died of a heart attack shortly thereafter. Dr. Price then removed the root canal tooth from the young man who had the fatal heart attack (after he died) and embedded just the tip of one of the roots of the tooth under the skin on the belly of a rabbit.
Two weeks later, that rabbit died of a heart attack. Dr. Price then removed the root tip from the dead rabbit and again embedded the root tip under the skin of a second rabbit. Two weeks later, the second rabbit died from a heart attack. Over the course of many months, Dr. Price took that same single root tip and embedded it under the skin of 100 rabbits. All 100 rabbits died within approximately 2 weeks, all from heart attack.
100 out of 100? All of the same cause of death???
Clearly, realizing that his dental work had caused the death of this young man provoked Dr. Price to shift the direction of his whole life’s work.
Over the course of next 35 years, Dr. Price relentlessly studied the impact that the mouth has on the health of the whole body. He experimented on over 60,000 rabbits (I know, I’m not a fan of animal testing either, but since it’s already been done, let us all learn from the work).
Dr. Price found a correlation between the dental work and whole body diseases. He found that heart attacks are one of the diseases that transferred 100% of the time. But he also found that many other diseases transferred from an embedded root canal tooth to a rabbit. Some of these diseases only transferred 88% of the time. Diseases like arthritis, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, the list is long…
How do we know that the death of this young man deeply impacted Dr. Price? Well, he dedicated one of his textbooks to this young man Donald. Donald Price.
Yes, Weston Price did a root canal on his own son who then died of a heart attack. It’s clear to me as a father that feeling the responsibility for the death of one’s own child would drive a person like Weston Price to make researching the impact the mouth has on the health of the whole body one’s life mission.
We encourage us all to learn from this so the death of a child and the relentless pursuit of the truth over the course of 35 years of research doesn’t go wasted. May we be inspired by this person who was able to take tragedy and redirect that energy into a work so that we could live healthier lives.
To learn more about the relative risks of root canals and more importantly what options each of us has to effectively navigate these risks, here’s a link to another article discussing the research and options available.
Knowledge is power.
Source:  Patient Empowerment by Dr. Hal A Huggins
About the Authors

Will and Susan Revak are the founders of They are committed to bringing empowering solutions to help others navigate to greater oral health.

They are the creators and hosts of the HealThy Mouth World Summit where they interviewed 20 experts from 6 countries about solutions how to create positive changes in our oral health.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Benefits of Activated Charcoal: Medicine of the Egyptians, Greeks, and Native Americans

Benefits of Activated Charcoal: Medicine of the Egyptians, Greeks, and Native AmericansBenefits of Activated Charcoal: Medicine of the Egyptians, Greeks, and Native Americans

June 18th, 2013 
Updated 06/18/2013 at 6:58 pm

Eating charcoal sounds about as appetizing as scarfing down some black, charred remains of a Saturday BBQ, but activated charcoal is a whole other animal. Activated charcoal is used as a detox agent to absorb a host of heavy metals, chemicals, and pharmaceutical drug remains that flow through your blood stream and cause a hindrance to your best health. Activated charcoal absorbs the toxins from your body and then, since it is not absorbed by the body, the toxins along with the charcoal are expelled, leaving you cleaner and more toxin-free.
The Numerous Benefits of Activated Charcoal
Charcoal is “activated” because it is made to have a very small particle size. This increases its overall surface area and absorptive capacity. Activated charcoal is produced by adding acid and steam to carbonaceous materials such as wood, coal, rye starch, or coconut shells. To understand just how effective this substance is at absorbing toxins, one standard 50-gram dose of activated charcoal has the surface area of 10 football fields. It also encourages bowel movements, so it can help to rid the body of toxins rather quickly.
Hippocrates, the Greek physician considered the father of natural medicine, used activated carbon to cure many patients. Activated charcoal (also referred to simply as carbon) has been called black magic because of it’s color and healing abilities. Carbon:

  • Has a negative ionic charge that attracts the positive ionic charges of toxins and poisons causing them to bind to the charcoal. They are then surreptitiously escorted out of the body via the eliminative channel of the intestines.
  • Removes heavy metals like lead and aluminum.
  • Deodorizes foul smells.
  • Removes symptoms of traveler’s diarrhea.
  • Reduces ulcers in the stomach.
  • Can be used as a toothpaste to whiten teeth and eliminate foul breath since it kills bacteria.
  • Reduces gas from eating beans and other gaseous foods.
  • Eliminate many micro-organisms and chlorine from drinking or bath water.
  • Removes pharmaceutical toxins from the body. This includes aspirin overdose, accidental household toxin ingestion, and heavy metals. It has been used for hundreds of years in cases of food poisoning. Ancient Egyptians used activated carbon as did the Native Americans.
  • Removes parasites and bacteria from the body. This includes bugs that cause everything from a stuffy nose to more invasive parasites.
Those with Crohn’s disease or irritable bowel syndrome need to prepare their activated charcoal a little differently, or use it externally, as a poultice, instead of mixing it with water and drinking it or taking it in pill form.