resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
A Guide for Talking to Doctors about Acupuncture and Brain Chemistry
Before I begin any discussion of how to talk about the effects of acupuncture on brain chemistry, nervous and endocrine function, it is essential to understand just what physicians most need help with.
Don't Turn a 2 Into a 10
The Wong-Baker FACES Pain Rating Scale1 is so useful because it can be used by almost anyone. Patients can use the numbers associated with the faces depicted on the scale or select the face that demonstrates their current level of pain from 0-10.
A History Worth Telling
The popularity and the use of acupuncture for the treatment of animals in the United States is at its peak.
Pain Underfoot: Metatarsalgia
Foot pain can interfere significantly with normal activities and severely limit participation in sports. Metatarsalgia is foot pain involving the metatarsal bones in the forefoot – the complaint of pain on the bottom of the ball of the foot.
CCE Finally Takes a "Baby Step" Toward Reform
During a 16-month period from October 2010 to February 2012, I devoted four separate columns to the heavy-handed attempt by the Council on Chiropractic Education to radically change the chiropractic profession through the accreditation process.
Finders Keepers: The Secret to Relationship-Based Marketing
Becoming a successful practitioner has less to do with what you learned in school, and more to do with your ability to find new patients and keep them!
MPA Media Wins 7 Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Dynamic Chiropractic and DC Practice Insights, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecedented seven publishing awards by the American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE), the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
A Chinese Medicine Story: An Interview with Mazin Al-Khafaji
Mazin Al-Khafaji's work has interested me for years. In February 2014, we invited him for the second time to speak at the Southwest Symposium in Austin, Texas.
Why Young People Need Chiropractic Now More Than Ever
According to a recent study published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, "It is now widely acknowledged that neck pain (NP), mid back pain (MBP), and low back pain (LBP) (spinal pain) start early in life and that the lifetime prevalence increases rapidly during adolescence to reach adult levels at the age of 18."
Peer Points: Always Seeking To Grow
Ellen "Kiki" Geary has spent the last decade honing her craft. As a specialist in integrative holistic care, she went straight from completing her master's degree in acupuncture and chinese herbal medicine from Bastyr University to building a successful and thriving practice in the small community of Anacortes, Washington.
Medical Qigong for the Heart: Part III
Part 1 and Part II of this series focused on the physical aspect of the Heart and mental emotional aspects of the Heart respectively. Now, I would like to focus on the spiritual aspect of the Heart.
Building From the Bottom Up
I caught up with my dear friend Honora Wolfe, in her Colorado painting studio where, if she is not praying in Bhutan or doing charitable work in a Nepali free clinic, she spends most of her time now.
New Medical Technologies You Need to Know
We're all familiar with how fast computers become obsolete, as well as the rapid pace of development in the field of cell phone technology. The latest smart phones are far more powerful than desktop computers were only a few years ago.
A Vibrating Capsule for Constipation? Relevance to Your Chiropractic Practice
The relationship between gastrointestinal (GI) complaints and back pain is not typically written about or discussed.
News in Brief
National Chiropractic Health Month: Be Proactive; Collegiate Roundup: Academic Appointments at Parker, Logan.
Waking Up the Gluteus Maximus
In previous articles in this series, we expounded on the importance of the gluteus maximus (GM) in athletic performance and protecting the knee from injury. We also know there is a link between iliotibial band syndrome and GM weakness.
9 Common Causes of Thyroid Imbalance and How You Can Help
How you sleep, how easily you wake up, and how much energy and stamina you have during the day are directly related to levels of the thyroid hormones.
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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