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Medicine as Metaphor
The practice of medicine is both an art and a science. We study and learn the system so that when the time comes to apply it, there is a greater possibility of successfully helping others.
The Roots of TCM in Depression Treatment
In traditional Chinese medicine, there is historical precedent for the treatment of so-called "Shen" (Heart-Mind) disorder, or disorder/dysregulation of the spirit, which is also considered as distinct but not separate from the cognitive function of the brain.
Making Public Health a Chiropractic Priority
As highlighted in this edition's News in Brief, Rand Baird, DC, MPH, FICA, FICC, editor and occasional author of our long-running column, "Chiropractic in the American Public Health Association", was recognized by the organization recently for 40 years of membership.
A War You Can Help Patients Win
The average American consumes approximately 60 percent of calories from sugar, flour and refined oils. A donut is a good example of a so-called "food" that represents these calorie sources.
Lower-Extremity Overuse Injuries: Primer on Causes and Corrections
From ankle sprains to stress fractures, shin splints to plantar fasciitis, the research is clear: These common overuse injuries of the lower extremities – among dozens of others – may be related to abnormal foot function in your patients.
The Source-Luo Point Combination, Part 3
Dr. Nguyen Nghi (NVN) was born in Vietnam and is one of the most important scholars, writers, teachers and practitioners of modern time. Many of his theories and applications are the source of modern teachers from Europe and the United States.
Online Marketing Basics: Google Ranking, Part 1
We all know there is so much opportunity with online marketing. And, let's face it, if you don't have a presence online with a website and social media, you are probably not where you want to be.
Adding Microneedling to Your Clinic for Results and Profit
Microneedling has taken the beauty world by storm over the last 10 years. Under the names dermaroller, microneedling or skin needling you will see these treatments listed in the services of nearly every fashionable beauty salon and day spa in the country.
Treating LBP in Golfers: Beyond Basic Assessment
The drive to master the most efficient swing demands a tremendous amount from the lower back. Maintaining stability in a flexed posture, supporting torso rotation and repetitively supporting the golf swing all put the lower back in a vulnerable position.
Merger Creates New Model of Care
Two San Francisco powerhouses of holistic healing, the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine (ACTCM) and California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS), are merging. Together they are building a visionary approach to applied integral health.
Data: The New Frontier in Health Care
Your practice is empowered with the data you need to improve patient health, run a more efficient (read: profitable) practice, get paid in timely fashion and help show the efficacy of chiropractic on the national stage in the midst of sweeping changes in health care!
Can Acupuncture Treat Knee Pain?
Recently, an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association concluded that, "neither laser nor needle acupuncture conferred benefit over sham for pain or function" among older chronic knee pain patients.
Treat Every Patient as an Athlete
Frontal-plane movement pattern dysfunction can set the stage for musculoskeletal injury. Frontal-plane stabilization is essential during the normal activities of daily living: think single-leg stance and gait cycle.
Aetna Updates 97140 Policy
In a development the Association of New Jersey Chiropractors is calling "a resounding victory for chiropractors nationwide," Aetna Insurance Company has updated its national reimbursement policy regarding 97140 (manual therapy), reaching an agreement two years after the association filed a declaratory judgment suit in federal court against the insurer.
The Integrative Medicine Puzzle: Putting the Pieces Together
The conversation is changing in the broader healthcare community with patients actually moving the discussion toward more integrative topics. Patients today want to know their options.
Technology Meets Practice: Chiropractic Every Day
About a year ago, I had an interesting conversation with a DC who made house calls. When I asked why, she was quick to explain she learns much more about her patients when she sees them at home than she could ever observe in the office.
Melatonin: A Promising Natural Agent in the Prevention of ALS
A number of years ago, experimental studies suggested melatonin could block key steps in the development of Alzheimer's disease, primarily by acting as a brain antioxidant and inhibiting the build-up of beta-amyloid plaque in the brain.
The Art of Creating a Healing Space
I always advise my graduates to examine their group practice or treatment rooms with fresh eyes after they leave my CE workshops. I tell them, "Ask yourselves - is your space qi filled, welcoming and healing? Or is it cold and clinical?"
News in Brief
Support of F4CP Continues With Latest Donations; Walter Reed Honors Dr. William Morgan; Recognizing 40 Years of Public-Health Activism; Allstate Decision Reversed.
Colon Health and TCM
I still remember many years ago, the loud "Yuck" from my wife at the time when we were together watching the Chinese movie "Last Emperor."
ICD-10 Is Not Scary (and Not About Billing)
In my 13 years of consulting with doctors on billing and coding matters, ICD-10 has aroused the biggest combination of misguided fear and ignorance I can remember.
Exploring and Learning from the Gift of Life
I'm grateful to have had the opportunity to teach cadaver dissection classes and workshops with Stephen Cina at the New England School of Acupuncture over the past seven years, first through the Sports Medicine Acupuncture Program and later as a NESA elective course.
June, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 06
Nutrition Research News
By James P. Meschino, DC, MS
Black Cohosh May Help Reduce Breast Cancer Risk
Epidemiological studies and some experimental evidence suggest that soy isoflavones, which act as phytoestrogens (plant-based estrogens) in the body, help reduce risk of breast cancer.The herb black cohosh, which contains phytoestrogen compounds, has been used in Europe with great success for 40 years as a treatment for menopausal symptoms, PMS and other female reproductive disorders (i.e., dysmenorrhea). Black cohosh has been shown to be nontoxic, with few reported adverse side effects, primarily mild nausea. As such, many European physicians prescribe it instead of hormone replacement therapy for postmenopausal women, and as a treatment for a variety of female complaints. It has a safety profile superior to hormone replacement. Hormone replacement therapy is known to increase the risk of breast cancer (by 2.3 percent per year) and other conditions.
Intrigued by the physiological effects of black cohosh and its phytoestrogen agents, a number of researchers have recently set out to examine its impact on various human breast cancer cell lines. The assumption by many investigators was that black cohosh would encourage the growth of breast cancer cells, because its weak estrogenic effect was likely to promote proliferation of these cells. However, studies have demonstrated the opposite: Black cohosh has been shown to have an anti-proliferative effect on a number of human breast cancer cell lines. Essentially, black cohosh extract has prevented breast cancer cells from dividing in all of the in vitro studies reported to date. In one study, black cohosh was shown to increase the effectiveness of the breast cancer drug Tamoxifen, when both were used concurrently.
In the study by Foster, the authors concluded that extracts of black cohosh can be taken safely by patients who are susceptible to breast cancer (and possibly should be used as a means of chemoprevention). In reference to these studies, D. Dixon-Shanes and N. Shaikh remark in the journal Oncology Report (Nov.-Dec., 1999) that herbs such as black cohosh and soy isoflavones show potential as natural agents that may reduce the risk of breast cancer (if taken). As one in nine women in the U.S. develops this disease, it may be prudent for North American women to take a supplement containing black cohosh and soy isoflavones throughout adult life (unless contraindications are present) to discourage the promotion of breast cancer. If black cohosh and soy isoflavones can inhibit the proliferation of breast cancer cells, then in theory, this would give the immune system a better chance to destroy cancer cells before they have an opportunity to thrive.
The standardized grade of black cohosh extract that demonstrated clinical efficacy provided 2.5 percent triterpene content. A usual daily dosage for menopause is 40 or 80 mg, twice per day. Half this dosage may be prudent simply to support reproductive health throughout the premenopausal years, and as a primary intervention to potentially aid in risk reduction of breast cancer. Further studies are underway to enhance our understanding of this important and timely subject.
Vitamin C Supplementation Linked to Prevention and Treatment of Cataracts
Researchers from Tufts University extracted pertinent dietary, lifestyle and supplementation practices and performed cataract screening assessment on 492 nondiabetic participants from 1980 to 1995. The results, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found that 34 percent of the group had cataracts (cortical opacities). A review of the data indicated a significant link between age and vitamin C intake for a very common form of cataracts, known as cortical cataracts.
For women younger than 60, a vitamin C intake greater than 362 mg/day reduced risk of cataracts by 57 percent, compared with those who had an intake of less than 140 mg/day. Those who took vitamin C supplements for more that 10 years had a 60-percent reduction in risk compared to nonsupplement users. Researchers also found that women who never smoked and had high intakes of folate and carotenoids showed a reduction in cataracts.
Dr. Ronald Plotnik, an associate professor of ophthalmology at the University of Rochester, N.Y., was quoted as stating, "I think it makes sense that vitamin C and other antioxidants might have a protective effect in terms of cataracts." He said that previous research suggests that free radicals (from UV light exposure and smoking cigarettes) could contribute to the development of cataracts.
The February 2002 Ophthalmic Epidemiology published the findings of the Roche European American Cataract Trial (REACT). This randomized clinical trial investigated the efficacy of an oral antioxidant, micronutrient mixture to slow progression of age-related cataracts. After three years, the subjects taking the vitamin mixture (18 mg beta-carotene, 750 mg vitamin C, and 600 IU of vitamin E) demonstrated a small but significant deceleration in the progression of age-related cataracts. There were no reported adverse side effects in the treatment group.
Together, these results imply that antioxidant vitamin supplementation, at moderate doses, is a safe and effective means to potentially prevent cataract development, and should be considered therapeutically to help slow the progression of existing age-related cortical opacities.
Soy Isoflavone Supplementation Demonstrates Ability to Reduce Bone Loss in Perimenopausal Women
There has been much debate if soy isoflavones, which act as weak estrogens in the body, have sufficient estrogenic activity to help prevent demineralization of bone when a woman's own estrogen production declines during menopause. Estrogen helps to keep calcium in bone until the menopausal years, when the drop-off in estrogen production is known to contribute to postmenopausal osteoporosis. In the U.S., one in four women demonstrates osteoporosis early in the postmenopausal years.
In a randomized study involving 69 perimenopausal women, the group that received 24 weeks of continual isoflavone-rich soy supplementation demonstrated a favorable effect on preventing bone loss versus the control groups, which were given either whey protein supplementation or isoflavone-poor soy supplementation (containing only 4.4 mg of isoflavones per day). This study convincingly demonstrated that a daily soy intake yielding 80.4 mg of isoflavones provides an estrogenic effect on bone, sufficient to slow or prevent its demineralization.
Larger studies of this type are necessary to confirm these findings. However, results from this preliminary trial agree with epidemiological evidence and animal studies: All indicate that soy isoflavones support bone mineral density in postmenopausal women and oopherectomized animals. Soy isoflavones studied most intensively for their phytoestrogen properties include genistein and diadzein.
Click here for previous articles by James P. Meschino, DC, MS.
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