SMOKINCHOICES (and other musings)

September 30, 2010

Vit-D, another tragedy

The Vitamin D Council Newsletter

September 18, 2010

Another tragedy

This is a periodic newsletter from the Vitamin D Council, a non-profit trying to end the epidemic of vitamin D deficiency. If you want to unsubscribe, go to the end of this newsletter. If you are not subscribed, you can do so on the Vitamin D Council’s website.
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Dear Dr. Cannell:
On June 3, 2010, my five and a half week old daughter was introduced to “child protection, who diagnosed her as being a victim of child abuse. I had brought my new born daughter to a general hospital, after she woke up screaming in pain when I moved her arm. Upon multiple x-rays we found out that she had a fracture in her right arm that had a transverse configuration, without any evidence of external injury (we later learned that a transverse configuration is typical in a pathologically fragile bone). Not understanding how this could have happened to my daughter, I had no explanation for the injury.
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Apparently because of the injury and our inability to explain how it happened, the doctors suspected child abuse and contacted the child abuse team who sent social workers to the hospital to interview us. After several hours of questioning, they transferred us to another hospital where we were immediately admitted to the child protection department. After further x-rays and bone scans the hospital found multiple micro-fractures throughout my daughter’s body.

On June 4th 2010, my infant daughter was taken out of my care and placed in the foster care system. The State appointed my daughter an attorney, who has become an angel for my daughter and to my family. Thankfully, my daughter’s attorney took her job seriously and set out to determine the truth of what happened to my daughter.

After interviewing me and my family and reading the transcripts of the initial interviews of my boyfriend and I written by the emergency social workers from the hospitals, my daughter’s attorney requested all of the x-rays, bone scans and medical reports from both hospitals.

Her attorney asked several doctors to look at the medical information and give their unbiased, expert opinions but they refused to touch the case because child protection was involved. Thankfully, she finally reached out to Dr. Patrick Barnes, a world-renowned neuroradiologist who agreed to look at my daughter’s case. He referred her to Dr. David Ayoub a diagnostic Radiologist out of Chicago IL, to look at the x-rays and bone scans specifically. After an initial review of the films, Dr. Ayoub proceeded to acquire every medical record in existence on my daughter including my prenatal records and ultrasounds, my daughter’s delivery and pediatric records and he had me fill out a medical questionnaire survey.

After careful and thorough review of all medical reports he saw that my daughter was suffering from infantile rickets in the state of healing, and that her bones were in a fragile state. He also stated that my daughter’s skull showed poor mineralization along the sutures and large areas or poor mineralization in the center portion of the skull plates. In addition the parietal skull was flattened.

As Dr. Ayoud was evaluating my daughters medical reports, he asked my daughter’s attorney to suggest that I go see Dr. Michael Holick. Upon his full evaluation of me, Dr. Holick found me to be suffering from osteomalacia, essentially the adult form of rickets.

This process took two months to complete and now, because of the lack of follow through by child protection doctors, my daughter has been without one of the things most critical to her young development, a caring and loving mother. And I have been robbed of some of the most precious moments I could have had with her.

Because it took so long to get the proper diagnosis and after being in foster care for almost two months, the child protection people then decided to place my daughter with her biological father who abandoned me when I was 2 months pregnant. He had not seen or even asked about his daughter until he was contacted by them on June 4th, almost six weeks after her birth.

It has now been 3 months since I have had my precious baby girl. Even with two outstanding doctor reports from two nationally distinguished doctors, the child protection people do not seem to care that my daughter was taken from her mother in error. Because they are essentially a law unto themselves, they have no legal obligation to take this new medical information about my daughter and myself and do anything with it.

It would take pages to explain the twisted system that child protection is, because the system is set up in such a way to always protect child protection; there actually isn’t a forum to bring this new information up in front of a judge unless the whole case goes to a trial, which would be months away.

The child protection agencies were set up to protect children, but where are the laws to protect the children and families from these agencies. What do you do when the child protection doctors and social workers are the ones responsible for neglect or abuse?

Still to this day neither child protection or my daughters biological father have taken my daughter to get looked at by a specialist, to make sure that she is getting what she needs to fix her vitamin D deficiency. (Thankfully, Dr. Ayoub assures me that because she has been fed formula since she was removed from my custody, I exclusively breast-fed her for the first 5 weeks, another risk factor for rickets, she is most likely safe from further fractures.) I am not allowed to get any medical information about my daughter as her bio dad has temporary custody. He is only allowing me to see my now 4-month-old daughter one day a week, at a supervised visitation center. In what kind of world does any of this seem right?

I will get her back; it will just take some time. I just hope that other families and children can be saved by being made aware of this epidemic of infantile rickets. Health care providers need to be educated on these issues. Most doctors are not taught to know what to look for when they are dealing with infantile rickets or other metabolic bone diseases. And when neonatal rickets are in the stages of healing the vitamin D and calcium levels are usually normal or high. That’s why it’s important to test, everything. They need to do their due diligence in ruling out every medical possibility before making their diagnoses. They need to help save families, not break them up.
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Helen,
USA
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Dear Helen:
Thank God that the court appointed an open-minded attorney to represent your child; that seldom happens in these cases. Usually the attorneys appointed to represent the children are the most rabid of the lot. Also, thank God you found Dr. Ayoub and Dr. Barnes. As you say, the child abuse authorities are a law unto themselves, they do not have to read your reports, file them in your child’s folder, or give your child back. Now that you have two experts and know what is going on, perhaps you may not feel so alone, feel like everyone thinks you are a child abuser, which is the usual outcome in these cases.
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A few months ago I discussed an absolutely frightening study. Basically, the study found that about 1/4 of all otherwise normal infants have evidence of infantile rickets while they are still in the womb. If these infants were x-rayed right after birth, I suspect they would be found to have multiple fractures from the very real trauma of coming through the birth canal. That is, it is likely that tens of thousands of infants are being sent home from the hospital with multiple fractures because no one has ever done a study looking for asymptomatic fractures.
Mahon P, et al. Low Maternal Vitamin D Status and Fetal Bone Development: Cohort Study (PDF format). J Bone Miner Res. 2009 Jul 6.
As an aside, the editorial that accompanied this study missed the point. Instead of asking for studies to discover what percentage of infants will have broken bones at birth and thus, how many parents are falsely accused of child abuse due to this tragedy, the authors of the editorial simply asked for more money for scientists.
Hewison M, Adams JS. Vitamin D Insufficiency and Skeletal Development In Utero (PDF format). J Bone Miner Res. 2010 Jan 15;25(1):11–13.
The “we care about kids more than you do” child abuse organizations are simply feeding at the trough of the child abuse industry. “According to the late Dr. Richard Gardner, the reason for increasing false allegations can be rationally explained. “There’s a complex network of social workers, mental health professionals, and law enforcement officials that actually encourages charges of child abuse — whether they are reasonable or not.”
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Dr. Gardner was referring to the fact that the Mondale Act of 1974 is responsible for the dramatic increase in child abuse charges because it affords full liability protection for the child abuse industry. They can do the most egregious and wanton things to the children in their care, and their parents, without fear that they will face civil liability charges. The Mondale Act indemnified the child abuse industry, and populated it with people whose livelihoods depend on bringing more and more allegations into the system. Your daughter is simply putting food on someone’s plate.
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The child abuse industry was behind the epidemic of “recovered memories” of child abuse in the 1990s and howled when judges started returning malpractice verdicts against recovered memory doctors, which quickly dried up that particular child abuse industry feeding trough. Now, the bread and butter of the child abuse industry is child physical abuse or battered child syndrome, first described 50 years ago in a seminal paper in JAMA, a paper that caused irreparable harm.
Kempe CH, et al. The battered-child syndrome. JAMA. 1962 Jul 7;181:17-24.
Do not expect this tragedy to be solved soon. Too many mouths are sucking at the trough. Also, the child’s father, the man who abandoned you and his child when you were two months pregnant, is he being paid to take care of his own child? I doubt child protection will tell you but I suspect he is being paid.
For almost 50 years, parents like you have either been sent to jail or had their child taken away or both; we are talking about hundreds of thousands of parents. It is all based on a simple observation loaded with face validity: children with lots of broken bones must have been beaten by someone. Now, it is quite possible that most of those hundreds of thousands of infants were never beaten, never abused, never mistreated, they were misdiagnosed, they simply had infantile rickets.
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John Cannell MD
Executive Director
Vitamin D Council
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Stave Alzheimers w/Vit-B

(This is welcome news and I want to share some thoughts following the article. . . Jan)

LOS ANGELES TIMES

High doses of B vitamins can reduce brain shrinkage, memory loss, study finds

September 9, 2010|

High doses of B vitamins can reduce shrinkage of the brain that is frequently a precursor of Alzheimer’s disease, British researchers reported Wednesday. In the best circumstances, the supplements reduced shrinkage by as much as 50%, and researchers hope that this may mean that the vitamins can delay the onset of Alzheimer’s. A longer trial is now being planned to determine if that is the case. The results are all the more remarkable because of the widely publicized failures of many experimental Alzheimer’s treatments.

Dr. A. David Smith of the University of Oxford and his colleagues studied 168 volunteers with mild cognitive impairment, which is characterized by memory loss, language problems and other mental difficulties beyond those normally associated with aging. It generally does not significantly interfere with daily activities. An estimated 16% of people over the age of 70 have mild cognitive impairment, and about half of those proceed to Alzheimer’s disease.

The rationale for the study was simple:

  • High levels of the amino acid homocysteine in the blood are thought to be linked to the development of Alzheimer’s.
  • B vitamins are known to reduce homocysteine levels.

Smith’s group gave half the patients daily doses of a Swedish vitamin called Triobe Plus and half of them a placebo. The product, which is dispensed only by prescription, contains 0.8 milligrams folic acid, 0.5 mg cyanocobalamin and 20 mg pyridoxine hydrochloride. That is about 300 times the recommended daily intake of vitamin B12, four times the recommended dose of folate and 15 times the recommended dose of vitamin B6. “This is a drug, not a vitamin intervention,” said nutritionist Helga Refsum of the University of Oslo, a co-author.

The team also used magnetic resonance imaging to measure brain volume. Normally, the human brain shrinks by about half a percent per year. Smith and his colleagues reported in the online journal PLoS One that the brains of the patients receiving the placebo shrank by an average of about 1.08% per year, while the brains of those receiving the supplement shrank by an average of only 0.76%, a decrease of 30%. But in patients who had the highest levels of homocysteine in their blood at the beginning of the two-year study, the shrinkage was reduced by 53%. Although the study was not designed to monitor mental capacity, the patients receiving the supplements scored better on mental tests, the researchers said.

“This is a very dramatic and striking result. It’s much more than we could have predicted,” Smith said in a statement.

At a news conference, Smith warned consumers against taking the high doses on their own, even though the results were “immensely promising.” But when asked whether he would take it if he were diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment, he replied: “Yes, no hesitation. I would take it.”

— Thomas H. Maugh II

Los Angeles Times

A Little Background Color

Brought my mother to live with me for the last 18 or so years of her life.  Not in good health, many ills. We did however, have a good life.  Celebrated her birthdays, went out for meals every so often.  Good days.  No regrets.  She had Alzheimers which I later understood was the reason for our having different recall of shared experiences.   It helped me to learn that there was a reason for the arguments we had been having over stupid things.  So I changed my thinking  Still, sometimes stuff wasn’t easy.   I share this with you as a way of telling you, I understand about this curse of this disease.  My brilliant, creative mother changed so much.  I know what Alzheimers does to a person.

In the last two years, I was forced to put her in a home which broke my heart and was one of the hardest things I have ever done. (both in California and Ohio).  I could no longer do all that needed doing as she became more frail.  And I was still working.   She died 15 years ago at 85.

There was a time 7 or 8 years ago that I recognized many of the telltale signs in myself.  It stressed me out.  When I finally realized that I was grieving my own demise before I even died,  I began to get a bit of a grip. I did quite a bit of reading and searching on the subject and to tell the truth, just not a whole lot out there. So  I did what seemed to be logical and made a little sense.

Change of attitude was called for.  Finally learned about Abraham and the Law of Attraction.  Worked for me.  Let’s face it – I really needed to “see” a better path before me.  Looking at fear and loss was not the way to go.   Health had been a major love of mine for more than 40 years, so I wasn’t a total beginner.

I experimented with a few things;  took phosphotydal-serine  for a few years, didn’t really notice much help on that.  Had always taken the B-vitamins –  but changed to a stress formula (per old books of Adele Davis).  Heard about MSM and did like that very much and still use.  I buy it by the large 200 gram container (powder) and take a Vitamin C crystal with it as well.  (mix both in about 4 0z water). .or just put both into a morning shake, kinda ALA David Wolfe with raw cacao nibs, hemp seed,  goji berri sometimes a protein powder, or almond milk if I have made some,  coconut oil,  fresh banana, blue berries and strawberries, maybe a handful of chlorophyll tablets   Whole Foods for some things and online purchases otherwise.

I don’t really like giving up time to exercise – never liked it!  I still walk – just not as far as I used to.  Still use my rebounder. . .(have a stationary bike,  a nice Pilates machine and something called a Health-rider,   I think. (if only I would use it all)

Its important to do whatever you like to do to get centered – go within.  Pray, meditate, write poetry, paint –  have joyful pursuits.  Music, the arts. . .any and all can imbue us with a higher vibration – – which in turn allows our body to heal itself.  But nothing equates to the power of “love”.  And that starts with our own self. We must love ourself deeply and completely – – then we have something to give and share with others.

I am fortunate that my nutrition is pretty good, as organic as I can manage and all made at home by me. I don’t use sugar in the house, but do have honey and stevia for the occasional circumstance. I am a devotee of Dr McDougall, but Dr Loren Cordain has pretty well taken over here by now.  I can’t handle as much lean meat as the Cavemen do,  but I manage pretty well.  Have Salmon quite often, big on vegetables and as almost everyone knows – I eat lots of fermented veggies – my biggest saving grace.  They are so loaded with all the bacteria our body needs and the B-vitamins in quantity not found anywhere else.  Plenty of EFA’a,  Ubiquinol (Co-Q-10).  Don’t take multi vitamins (for years now) or calcium.  Vit D 6K daily.  I spray Magnesium Oil on my torso once or twice daily – just the chest (no breast) and belly, upper arm and thighs.   Lastly, I tap.  If I have pain, I tap.  My feeling get hurt, I tap.

Stuff I’ve Learned that Works and is VERY Relevant

#1 Homocysteine    Loren Cordain “The Paleo Diet”

So many things are wrong in the “health-picture” of modern life.  Alzheimer’s is rampant.  Obesity, heart disease,  diabetes,  hypertension have all become commonplace.    We do not have to accept that one in four of us will have dementia – – this is NOT  a natural development of the aging process.  We can change this picture.  We just have to understand what the culprits are  then we can get home free.

The article speaks of homocysteine as a major culprit – there is too much of it in the blood levels and it is strongly linked with Alzheimer High dosage of B-vitamins will control this condition.  The American diet is really not providing enough of the B-Vitamins to people.    Page 18 of the Paleo Diet speaks of higher lean meat consumption by people demonstrating lower levels of homocysteine, a toxic substance which damages arteries and predisposes to atherosclerosis (than is the case with vegans).  Net result: high protein regimen produces beneficial changes in blood chemistry  that in turn reduce overall risks of heart disease.

Elsewhere it says Lean meats are rich sources of B6 and B12 while fresh fruits and veggies are the best food source for folate. Americans don’t eat enough fresh fruits and vegetables which is why intake of folate is low.

#2 Insulin Resistance  (Dr. Richard Johnson, The SUGAR FIX

Dr. Johnson believes the ideal range for uric acid lies between 3 to 5.5 mg per dl – – above this range your risk of developing health problems correlate quite well.   His thrust in this book is on Fructose and how damaging it is to our systems (especially HFCS).  It raises Uric Acid levels, causes heart disease, thyroid disturbances,  lowers the Omega-3 fats,  contributes to HBP which causes brain atrophy, and raises Homocysteine levels.

In the following statement, Dr. Johnson explains just how closely tied uric acid levels are to fructose consumption:

  • “If you give animals fructose, they develop diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and fatty liver. And in most of these conditions, if we lower uric acid, we can prevent many of these conditions, [although] not completely.

So lowering uric acid seems to benefit some of the mechanisms by which fructose causes disease.

  • A very important point is that if you take two animals and you feed one fructose and feed the other one the exact same number of calories but give it as dextrose or glucose, its only the fructose-fed animal that will develop obesity, insulin resistance, fatty liver, and high triglycerides, signs of inflammation, vascular disease, and high blood pressure.”

So please be aware, we can change all this.  Our choices are causes and in them we do have power.

Hey, I’m still over here messing around and having a ball.  How many people do you know who are up til all hours (it’s past 4 a.m. now) – so please, no one call me in the morning.. . .I’m out here.   Maybe I am sick and just don’t know it.  .  .  .  Jan

September 29, 2010

Will they Come?. . (build it)

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH

From farmland to ‘Field of Champions’

Logan County man’s vision becomes soccer haven for kids across rural area

September 27, 2010

MICAH RIFFLE | ONN-TV
Ray Davis, 44, of Lewiston, spent much of the spring and summer building the regulation-size soccer field on his land for his two children and other youngsters in the small community who don’t have access to a full-size field nearby.

Davis spent more than $25,000 on the field, which includes an irrigation system, covered benches, European-style goals and a 25-foot-high mesh ball net.

MICAH RIFFLE | ONN-TV
Davis spent more than $25,000 on the field, which includes an irrigation system, covered benches, European-style goals and a 25-foot-high mesh ball net.
|

LEWISTOWN, Ohio – It’s hard not to draw comparisons between Ray Kinsella’s field of dreams and Ray Davis’ field of dreams.   After all, like Kinsella – the character Kevin Costner portrayed in the 1989 film Field of DreamsDavis plowed under several acres of fertile farmland to build an athletic field.

But there are some big differences.

  • Kinsella’s field was a monument to baseball. Davis’ is dedicated to soccer.
  • Kinsella built his field in response to ghostly nocturnal whispers: “Ease his pain. Build it, and he will come.” Davis swears that the only voice he ever hears in the middle of the night belongs to his wife of 18 years, Kim.
  • Kinsella’s field threatened to divide his family and destroy its relationship with the community. Davis’ field is bringing his family – and the community – closer together.

The biggest difference: Davis and his field are real.

Davis, a seventh-generation Logan County resident, spent much of the spring and summer building what he now calls Champions Field.

Situated within a decent kick of Davis’ back door, the regulation-size soccer field (70 yards by 120 yards) features an irrigation system, covered benches, custom-made European-style goals and a 25-foot-high mesh barrier to keep balls from disappearing into the corn that borders much of the field.

Davis, 44, built the field not only for his two children – Connor, already a veteran soccer player at age13, and Rachel, 8 – but for young soccer players throughout the Indian Lake area. “Even after our kids are grown and gone, the community will be able to use it,” he said.

Davis, a former high-school and college wrestler who has managed several Ohio manufacturing facilities, said Champions Field grew out of a desire to level the playing field for area youth – in more ways than one.

“About a year ago, we were playing on some fields that weren’t in very good condition,” he said. “They had holes, ruts and so forth, and it was kind of dangerous for kids to play on.   “In talking with my wife, we both decided we had the acreage – so, why not? And we started looking at the feasibility of building a field.”  The Davises, who owned about 300 acres at the time, also wanted to make sure that children in the Indian Lake area weren’t penalized simply because they lived in small towns.

For youngsters in Lewistown, population 693, the closest usable field was in Huntsville, about 6 miles away, and it isn’t a full-size field. The closest regulation-size field, Davis said, was in Bellefontaine, more than 12miles away.   “We wanted to build a field that was safe for the kids and also something that they would feel proud to play on.”

“He brought in eight or nine pieces of equipment with GPS/laser-guided equipment, and in a very short time, we had a soccer field.”Davis then recruited his 71-year-old father, Bill, a retired physics teacher, to weld the goals, the canopies that cover the sideline benches and the poles that support the mesh barrier.As Champions Field began to take shape, friends and neighbors reacted with disbelief, Davis said.   “People keep asking, ‘Why are you spending so much money?'”

The field cost Davis more than $25,000, and maintaining it won’t be cheap, he acknowledged. His electricity bill has risen 50percent since he powered up his irrigation system, he said. He knows it will jump again when crews install six stadium-grade light stands.  The inaugural game at Champions Field took place Aug. 26. The Laker Championship Soccer Club, which Davis coaches, defeated West Liberty 7-0.  By the time the fall season wraps up next month, six middle-school games will have been played on the field.

Next year, when the grass is more mature, Davis plans to make the field available to other age groups.   Ron Kimmel, who coaches soccer in an area recreational league, can’t wait.   “It’s just a wonderful opportunity for the kids to have an opportunity to play on a field of this caliber,” he said. “It’s a perfect bridge from rec soccer to high-school soccer.”

Connor Davis plays for a club based in Dublin, but the seventh-grader doesn’t mind the long commute for games. He’ll do just about anything and go just about anywhere to play soccer.   “Besides food and sleeping, it’s probably my No. 1 thing,” he said.

And that brings up one other difference between Ray Kinsella’s field of dreams and Ray Davis’ field of dreams.   Although Connor might think otherwise, Davis’ field isn’t heaven – or Iowa.     It’s Lewistown, Ohio

arica.robbins@onntv.com

September 28, 2010

Exercise is good – right?. . well. .

Exercise bad before cancer treatment?

Study at OSU incites debate among critics

Monday, September 27, 2010

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH

OSU's Dr. Ragu Kanagasabai, left, and Dr. Govindasamy Ilangovan

OCTAVIAN CANTILLI | DISPATCH
OSU’s Dr. Ragu Kanagasabai, left, and Dr. Govindasamy Ilangovan

Exercising 48 hours before chemotherapy or radiation might undermine the cancer treatment, two researchers say, but other experts disagree with their conclusion.

Drs. Ragu Kanagasabai and Govindasamy Ilangovan, researchers at Ohio State University Medical Center, published the results of their three-year study last week. They found that a protein called heat shock factor-1, released when the body encounters stress, can help cancer cells resist treatment. The stress can be psychological, such as during an argument, or physical, such as exercising 20 minutes on a treadmill, they said.

“People underestimate the impact of stress on cancer outcomes,” said Ilangovan, who has been an associate professor and research investigator at OSU for eight years.

The researchers isolated breast-cancer cells and observed how they responded to ultraviolet treatment, to simulate chemotherapy and radiation. Cells that had been exposed to heat shock factor-1 were able to withstand treatment while cells without the protein were more effectively combated.

“HSF-1 assists the cancer cells to recover,” Ilangovan said.

But some breast-cancer experts say that the study, which tested isolated cells and not animals or humans, does not support the assertion that exercising would make treatment less effective.   “Cells can behave very differently than what happens in real life,” said Dr. Anil Sood, a gynecologic oncologist and researcher at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Texas.

Many phases of clinical testing must be done before drawing the conclusion that exercise in the days before treatment could undermine it, said Sood, who called the conclusion “more than a leap.”   You have no idea what the real effect is going to be from doing a cell-plate, in-vitro test,” Sood said.

Dr. Charles Shapiro, director of breast oncology at OSU’s Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital, agreed with Sood, adding that the upside of exercise during cancer treatment far outweighs any potential risks.   “Exercise may release HSF-1, but it also releases 10,000 other things that are beneficial,” Shapiro said.

Despite the criticism, Ilangovan and Kanagasabai say they are confident that clinical studies will find that, in the two days prior to cancer treatment, exercise can enable cancerous cells to fight off radiation and chemotherapy.

“We’re going to be studying it in the clinical labs to confirm, but I believe this test is consistent to what’s happening with OSU patients,” Kanagasabai said.

Raising the money to continue their research might take up to five years, Ilangovan said.   Both researchers stressed that exercise is a vital part of fighting cancer and that only during the 48-hour window prior to treatment should patients skip working out. “Exercise is the best medicine people can have,” Ilangovan said.

“You don’t have to lose anything from not exercising for 48 hours. And you get the chance to gain something – a more successful treatment.”  (*)

wlowery@dispatch.com

(*  Having an open mind and respecting the scientific community,  I would take some comfort in the criticism of the doctors who criticize this theory of the OSU researchers (tho, not too much comfort, because we know how reluctant the traditional medical community can be with radical  new info  or treatment which falls outside traditional guidelines).

But if I were undergoing radiation therapy for a cancer of some sort, I would probably take this under serious advisement and maybe even do a little deliberate stress reduction technique.  (today, there are so many choices in the “energy medicine” field).  What could it hurt?  For me, I can zone in almost anytime to a satisfying level of peaceful contentment with nothing more than easy ole EFT.  But there is Chinese QiGong,  Quantum Touch,  Donna Eden with her various books on “Energy Medicine” – – Lordy, don’t get me started, the field runneth over these days. . . .The “Healing Codes” and so on. We’re talking real solutions that work, but are not too welcomed by our allopathic community.

But then, if I ever DID get a cancer somewhere in or on my body, I would probably address it in an energy medicine manner. . . .at least I would hope so, providing I am still able to call my own shots. Jan)

September 26, 2010

Healthcare and “all the King’s Men”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jan Turner @ 5:39 pm
Tags:

(Actually, I’m not posting this entire article which Mr. Zaldivar has reported with Mr Tomson, but only excerpting from it , as he followed this up with a further article today which I would also like to include (partially). . . the latter done jointly with Jennifer Agiesta – – busy man, job well-done..  . then finally, comments of my own conclude.    Jan)

Health-care law poorly understood

Poll finds that both supporters and foes aren’t really sure what’s in it

By Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar and Trevor Tompson ASSOCIATED PRESS

WASHINGTON — Six months after President Barack Obama signed the landmark health-care law, the nation still doesn’t really know what’s in it.    More than half of Americans mistakenly think the overhaul will raise taxes for most people this year, an Associated Press poll finds. But that would be true only if most people were devoted to indoor tanning, which got hit with a sales tax.    Many who wanted the health-care system to be overhauled don’t realize that some provisions they cared about actually did make it in.   And about a quarter of supporters don’t understand that something hardly anyone wanted didn’t make it: They mistakenly say the law will set up panels of bureaucrats to make decisions about people’s care — what critics labeled “death panels.”

The uncertainty and confusion amount to a dismal verdict for the Obama administration’s campaign to win over public opinion. Before the final votes in Congress, Obama personally assured wavering Democrats that he’d take the case to the American people after the law passed. But it hasn’t worked. And in the final stretch before the midterm elections, Republicans are united by their call for repeal.

Confusion Abounds

“I’m insecure about a document that was as big as the health-care bill and wonder if anybody understands exactly what’s in it,” said Diann Kelley, 61, a retiree from Marietta, Ga., who said she’s “somewhat opposed” to   the law.    “The main fear is the cost,” Kelley explained. “I’m not sure that we can afford to take on something quite as massive as the health-care reform with the economy the way it is.”    It’s not that Kelley has a negative opinion about everything in the law. The prohibition on health-insurance companies denying coverage to people because of preexisting medical conditions “is really a fine idea,” she said.

The questions in the poll, conducted by Stanford University with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, included as true-or-false quiz on 19 item. People were asked how confident they were about their answers.    For the most part, majorities picked the right answers. But a sizable number also got things wrong. And, right or wrong, people were unsure of their answers. Two-thirds or more were uncertain about   their responses on eight of nine core provisions of the legislation. Analysis of the findings indicated a split as far as the impact of accurate knowledge, between Democrats and independents on one side and Republicans on the other. Accurate knowledge of the law made no difference in overwhelming opposition from Republicans. Michael Cagnina, 33, a web developer from Powhatan, Va., summed it up: “It just doesn’t make me feel comfortable that the government is going to give people free health care but ultimately the government’s money is my money.”

However, for Democrats and independents, the more accurate knowledge that people had of the bill, the more they liked it.    “Among Democrats and independents, the lack of knowledge is suppressing public approval of the bill,” said Stanford political-science   professor Jon Krosnick. “Although the president and others have done a great deal to educate people about what is in this bill, the process has not been particularly successful.”

Overall, three out of 10 in the poll said they favored the law, while four in 10 said they were opposed. Thirty percent were neutral. The survey was conducted Aug. 31 to Sept. 7 and involved interviews with 1,251 randomly chosen adults. It has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.9 percentage points.

.

Many wish health-care law did more, poll finds

They outnumber 2-to-1 Americans who don’t want government involved

By Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar and Jennifer Agiesta ASSOCIATED PRESS
Republican leaders have promised to dismantle President Barack Obama’s health-care plan.

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama’s health-care overhaul has divided the nation, and Republicans think their call for repeal will help them win elections in November. But the picture’s not that clear-cut.

A new Associated Press poll finds that Americans who think the law should have done more outnumber by 2-to-1 those who think the government should stay out of health care. “I was disappointed that it didn’t provide universal coverage,” said Bronwyn Bleakley, 35, a biology professor from Easton, Mass.      More than 30 million people are expected to gain coverage in 2019 when the law is fully phased in, but an additional 20 million are to remain uninsured. Bleakley, who was uninsured early in her career, views the overhaul as a work in progress.

The poll found that about four in 10 adults think the law did not go far enough to change the health-care system, regardless of whether they support the law, oppose it or remain neutral. On the other side, about one in five say they oppose the law because they think the federal government should not be involved in health care at all.

The AP poll was conducted by Stanford University with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Overall, 30 percent favored the legislation, while 40 percent opposed it, and 30 percent remained neutral.      Those numbers are no endorsement for Obama’s plan, but the survey also found a deep- seated desire for change that could pose a problem for Republicans. Only 25 percent in the poll said minimal tinkering would suffice for the health-care system.      Brian Braley, 49, a tech industry worker from Mesa, Ariz., wants Washington to keep its hands off. “I think it’s a Trojan horse,” Braley said of the health-care law. “It’s a communist, socialist scheme. All the other countries that have tried this, they’re billions in debt, and they admit this doesn’t work.”    If Republicans succeed in tearing out what they dismiss as “Obama- care” by the roots, GOP leaders would still find themselves in a quandary.

Republicans “are going to have to contend with the 75 percent who want substantial changes in the system,” said Stanford political-science professor Jon Krosnick, who directed the university’s participation.      “Republican legislators’ passion to repeal the legislation is understandable if they are paying attention to members of their own party,” Krosnick added. “But if they want to be responsive to all Americans, there are more Democrats and Independents than there are Republicans.”

Health-care proposals released by House Republican leaders last week would create new insurance options for people with medical problems and for small businesses, but they’re likely to cover a fraction of those who would be reached by Obama’s law.      The poll did find some agreement among people who think the law should do more and those who think government should get out. Broad majorities of both the “get-outs” and “do-mores” said medical care, health insurance and prescription drugs cost too much. And most said the system should aim to increase the number of people with insurance and enable Americans to get the care they need, while improving quality.

The differences emerge   when it comes to the means:

  • Only 25 percent of the “get-outs” favor requiring health-insurance companies to sell coverage to people regardless of pre-existing medical conditions, while   54 percent of the “do-mores” support it. The law requires insurers to cover children regardless of health problems starting this year, and that protection is extended to people of all ages in 2014.
  • Among those who want a law that does more, 68 percent favor requiring medium to large companies to provide insurance to their workers or pay a fine; that stands at 28 percent among those who want the government out. The law does not require   employers to offer coverage, but it hits companies that have 50 or more workers with a penalty if any full-time employee gets a government subsidy for health insurance.
  • The “get-outs” overwhelmingly reject the health-care law’s requirement that most Americans carry health insurance starting in 2014. But the “do-mores” are split, with 34 percent favoring the mandate, 33 percent opposing it, and 32 percent neutral.

The survey was conducted   Aug. 31 to Sept. 7, and involved interviews with 1,251 randomly chosen adults nationwide. It has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.9 percentage points.    The survey was conducted by Knowledge Networks, which first chose people for the study using randomly generated telephone numbers and home addresses. Participants were interviewed online. Participants without Internet access were provided it free.

.

Too many of us are wounded and unhappy

Our country spent so much in time, money, energy and  argument and after all was done and over with – no one is happy or satisfied.  People like ME.  I bitched and moaned because without the single- payer system in place, there would be no chance to cut costs – REALLY cut them and eliminate waste which we all know is rampant.   Medicare for everybody!  To hell with the insurance companies – they have tons of other things to cover and make their fortunes from.  Health should not even be  in the same discussion with the interests of Insurance companies.  Medicare has been a huge success.  So, yeah – I’m in that camp, big time.

“However”

When our President ran on his platform, we were all for it.  AND sick of everything we had been through for too many years.  Here was  a man who understood what was needed and had a plan. But once in office,  stuff changed and I rather suppose there is a lot more to being President than any of us can imagine.  His hair is not turning gray overnight for no reason!.. . .of course its not easy and there is a lot more to it than we will ever know.  AND if memory doesn’t fail, our country was in pretty crappy shape facing perils not seen in nearly 80 years.  He had a lot of juggling to do and frankly, I WAS pleased with his handling of our major crisis.

I feel cheated and disillusioned with everything going on in Washington.  Too much farting around and not enough actually getting done.   Many things most of us feel strongly about.  Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,  cleaning up the financial mess that caused all the madness in the first place and putting the crooks away – – we were incapable to lay blame, let alone punish the offenders.  This is most definitely NOT bringing “change” to Washington as promised.  Bailing out the big banks and institutions, but unable to really affect the kind of change needed for Main street.  The Banks are STILL too big to fail.  So stuff wasn’t good.

Not well-served by his Advisers

Our President tried too hard to be fair with the Republicans to his loss as the only thing they wanted from him was his failure – never any intention for cooperation.    Our country has paid a heavy price in time lost,  Democratic party split as the Blue Dogs decided their interests were not being served and walked away from the enormous unity they had had only a few months prior.

As to the health-care issue,  mostly we acquiesced realizing that something was better than nothing after all this time and perhaps we “could” further correct and amend – down the line – just get some thing passed – so collectively, we held our noses and  went for it.    In fairness, Obama can not be  blamed as we were all in disagreement and no  happy solution could be worked out by then.

I wish he had been stronger and had more fire in his belly – Johnson he is not!

I wish his staff or advisers had been bright enough to keep him abreast of the desire and mood of the people.  One can not accomplish much with the opposition party so partison and antagonistic to the point of harming the country to get what they want.  Or with one’s own party rebelling and splintering off and finally, the people losing all faith in him feeling that he had let them down.  I’ve been guilty of that too, sorry to say – tho I really know better.  He is who he is and he IS a good man working against almost impossible odds.

But lets be straight.  Obama has not abandoned us – we are abandoning him!  We can’t get there from here – it ain’t gonna happen.  A country divided can not stand. . . and we seem to be doing a pretty good job of crumbling, all around.

Perhaps no one knows what the “Tea-Partyers” really want as it doesn’t appear they know what they want either including the rest of the Republican Party.  They appear to be undisciplined brats seeing how much they can get away with.   At this point, almost everyone in America wants something other than what we can see right now.  No one is satisfied.  No one, left – right, black-white-yellow or brown, male-female, gay-straight. . .I have never seen it worse.  There seems to be poison at work from the inside out

And yet, under it all, we are all Americans.  Each of us want the best for the country and for our selves.  Our security is shaken,  many are sinking, losing too much.  When people are scared and without direction and then lose hope, we have come too far down an ugly road.  Not good for anybody or anything.  Perhaps the time for a little introspection would be appropriate.  If we seek solutions, surely we realize – this is not the way to get it.  As Americans, pulling in harmony as one country, we can do anything.  To destroy one another with all this hate and animosity will leave us a nation of crippled has-beens who coulda been – –  great.  Choice is everything.

We are so “worth it” . . . .but we have to “do” it

Jan

September 25, 2010

We and Salmon need HELP

ORGANIC CONSUMER’S ASSOCIATION

Stop Genetically Engineered Salmon from Coming to Market!

We stand at a pivotal moment on Earth.

  • The ocean’s are heating up and becoming more acidic because of human-induced global warming.
  • Phytoplankton, the irreplaceable foundation of the ocean’s food chain are dying off.

Wild fish populations are crashing, not only because of global warming, but because we are allowing out-of-control, “profit at any cost” industrial fishing corporations to wreck havoc. And now the coup de grace.

The Obama Administration is poised to approve the first genetically engineered fish for human consumption, GE salmon, while the FDA is still aiding and abetting the force-feeding of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to the public, wielding the fouled Bush-Quayle Era doctrine of “substantial equivalence” of GMO and natural foods like a club, legally blocking adequate safety testing and labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

We need to take action now, before the so-called FDA “review” of genetically engineered salmon is finished. It’s unlikely the Obama Administration will ban GMO foods or fish, even though they are inherently hazardous.

  • But if massive public pressure can force the FDA to require mandatory labels on Genetically Engineered fish, polls indicate that most consumers will boycott these GE fish and force them off the market.

We have until November 22, 2010, to submit public comments calling for labeling genetically engineered salmon. In addition the FDA still needs to do an Environmental Assessment before approving the GE salmon. The FDA Environmental Assessment will include a 30 day public comment period. How many letters can Organic Consumers Association members generate in the next two months?

You sent 100,000 letters in opposition to Tom Vilsack for USDA Secretary because of his pro-biotech, pro-Monsanto politics. We need to send that many or more to stop genetically engineered salmon. Direct action is going to be necessary, too.

If the Obama Administration stubbornly continues to hide behind the scientifically discredited Bush-Quayle doctrine of “substantial equivalence” claiming there isn’t a “material” difference between genetically engineered and normal salmon, then we’ll have no choice but to use every tactic we can muster to throw a wrench into the gears of the Frankenfoods Express. Please help us save the wild fish and the oceans instead of allowing the biotech industry to brainwash us into believing that industrial fish farms and genetic engineering represent the future of food. Write to the FDA to demand labels and adequate pre-market safety-testing of GMOs. And please forward this Action Alert to everyone you know.

(I know how hard I have been hitting on this issue, but I feel so strongly about this – I truly believe we must do anything and everything we legally can to stop this genetic modification  of the very foods nature has so generously  provided us. It is harming us, it will harm the fish and jeopardize the ocean and planet.  Haven’t we done enough to destroy the planet already?    Jan)

September 24, 2010

Help beat GE Fish

GE-Fish_Header

[object Object]Right now, FDA is in the process of approving the first genetically engineered (GE) animal meant for human consumption: the GE AquAdvantage Atlantic salmon. Congress must speak up to stop this dangerous and misguided approval process. Already Rep. Dennis Kucinich called on FDA to slow down its process and ensure that the public has sufficient time and all available data to provide meaningful and informed public comment.

Please write your Congressional Representative and Senators and urge them to sign on to the dear colleague letters that are circulating the House authored by Rep. DeFazio, Kucinich, Thompson, and Miller and the Senate authored by Sen. Begich.  Additionally, urge them to contact Rep. Waxman and Sen. Harkin demanding that they hold oversight hearings on the regulation of genetically  engineered animals.

To contact your Representatives or Senators to stop this movement toward GE Salmon – against our wishes and right to choose, please contact the Center for Food Safety who has enabled a handy form for us to just endorse – – by  clicking here.

Hospice better than ICU?

Hospice Easier on Patients and

Families than ICU

BOSTON    Study: Hospice easier on patients, their families    Cancer patients who die at home with hospice services had a better quality of life in their final days compared with similar patients   who died in the hospital or intensive-care unit, according to a new study. Moreover, the family members of the patients fared worse psychologically if their loved ones died in a hospital or ICU versus at home.

The study, published Sept 15, 2010 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, suggests that experiences at the end of life are shaped by the setting. Hospital and ICU care might emphasize staying alive at all costs while hospice care emphasizes managing symptoms and comfort at the end of life. The study is also the first to show that caregivers of cancer patients who die in an ICU are at heightened risk for post-traumatic stress disorder.

The study, from researchers at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, followed 342 people with advanced cancer and their family caregivers for an average of four months.

(I can attest to the truth of “all of the above.”   I have sat with my most precious mother for six hours thru her  last hours as she transited toward her further journey – – because I loved her so dearly and needed to be there with her, for her sake and mine.   As with all humans, that silver umbilical cord does a number on us and there seems no letting go, especially where the bond was so close.  Ours was, and maybe neurotically so – I’m not too much into labels, but I know my friends had thought for years that I may collapse if I ever lost my mother.  Her passing was excellent and peaceful tho all her body functions were shutting down and she was struggling for air.   We were in a hospital setting, but totally alone and she was unaided by any but me.  I had disengaged her from all the cords and attachments  I saw on her when I arrived in emergency . . as I saw the look of fear and stress in her eyes. . . what else could I do?

This had been her written  instructions for years and no-one was willing to comply – always – do what needs to be done to keep the patient alive.  I steeled against the doctor’s reprimand that what I was doing was tantamount to killing her.  I ordered her release and they ousted us to a small room on another floor.   (Since sometime in my thirties, I have been involved with one form of energy healing or another.)  So I did what I knew how to do to ease her discomfort, hold her hand, love her and let her know it and speaking the name of the Lord.

I witnessed her trauma ease, fear dissipate,  and finally her breathing evened out to almost sound normal and then gentle. . . . and then she was gone. . .but I stayed with her body til it stopped – almost another hour.  .  .  then sought a nurse to advise that my mother had died and I would send for her body.  During my hours with my mom, I had asked a nurse for something to ease her pain and struggle she was having trying to breath.  Nothing ever came.  Hospitals are not hospices.    What they say may be true – – “love” is the most powerful force we can know.  She was at peace and so was I.  I did not collapse. . . .did what I generally do – which is  “do what I have to do.”  There was a sense of loss to be sure.  How could there not be?    Had I been a stranger to God’s love or ignorant of any way to access this blessed balm – – well, maybe it would have destroyed me, I dunno. . . .  Jan)

September 23, 2010

Clinton a vegan – McD

Filed under: Dr John McDougall,heart disease,plant-based diet,Weight Loss — Jan Turner @ 10:52 am
Tags:

February 2010


Vol. 9 Issue 2

Clinton’s Weight Loss Secret: Plants

View CNN video

An Invitation for Bill Clinton to Attend the McDougall Program

Dear 42nd President William Jefferson Clinton:

With all their good intentions, and the use of sophisticated, expensive technologies, your doctors are allowing your heart disease to progress as if it were a runaway train destined for a wreck. Your cardiologist, Dr. Allan Schwartz, at New York Presbyterian Hospital is telling you further blockage is the normal course of your disease, and your diet and lifestyle are not involved. Medical experts expressing their opinion in the news since your surgery are misleading the public into believing that the proper management of this disease is through constant surveillance and repeated surgical interventions. This is big business talking, and in addition to mismanagement of your personal care, one result will be an increase in the already more than one million angioplasties and 500 thousand bypass surgeries performed annually in the US.

Recall your first painful encounter with the heart surgery business on September 3, 2004 when you were hospitalized following an episode of chest pain. You had quadruple bypass surgery three days later. A couple of days ago, on Thursday, February 11, 2010, you needed the heart surgeons again. You had two bare metal stents placed in your heart following a few of days of mild chest discomfort. This history will continue to repeat itself until you seriously change your eating habits and get these meddling doctors out of your life. You are missing another “teaching moment” and bypassing another chance to change health and healthcare in America.

In a letter I sent to you the day following your hospitalization in 2004, I pleaded with you to refuse bypass surgery. I told you that bypass surgery does not save lives in most cases, and I warned you of the brain damage you would suffer from being on the heart-lung bypass machine. Likely you did not read that letter. Following your quadruple bypass you were a noticeably different man. Your sometimes-irrational behavior during Hillary Clinton’s campaign was in part due to your surgically-induced mental decline. I sent another letter in the spring of 2008 apologizing for the harm my colleagues caused you and their failure to offer you intensive medical therapy founded on a healthy diet. I believe you received that letter or read the Wall Street Journal article that followed about your brain damage.  Since you became aware of your functional loss you have seemed to me to be in much better control when before the public.

I am taking the opportunity in this letter to try to help you again. By helping one of our country’s greatest statesmen, I may be able to help other heart patients (which happens to include most adults following the Western diet). This is my third attempt, but likely not my last, because, after all, your heart doctors (Dean Ornish, MD being an outstanding exception) believe your disease is unstoppable. Remember what they said: they are going to manage your future health by constant surveillance and repeated surgical interventions. These well-educated professionals are dead wrong on how to care for a patient such as you.

In order for you to stop having false hope you need to be told that heart surgery, including bypass surgery and angioplasty with or without stents, does not save lives in the vast majority of cases. You have not been fixed by either procedure. The reason for this is that the bypass surgeons and cardiologists are operating on the stable hard fibrous plaques that do not kill people. Why do they operate on nonlethal lesions? Because they can. These large fibrous stable plaques, which have been present for years if not decades, are visible by technologies like angiograms and heart scans. Once visualized, they become targets for knives, grafts, sutures, and catheters.

The disease that really kills is largely invisible to your doctors. Tiny festering sores that rupture cause heart attacks, and the deaths that follow these heart attacks in nearly half the cases. In order to understand the underlying problem, think about pustules or pimples rupturing on a teenager’s face, but in this case the deadly activity is inside your arteries. In medical terminology, these tiny sores are called “volatile plaques.” When they pop, substances generally referred to as “products of injury” are released. The body’s response is to form a blood clot to cover up the wound (similar to the blood clot that forms when you cut your hand with a knife). If the blood clot (called a thrombus) is large enough, then the flow in the entire heart artery can be blocked off. The heart muscle that lies distal to this sudden blockage usually dies—and that is how a heart attack occurs.

Why do heart surgeons not operate on the killing part of this disease? Because they can’t. They cannot see these tiny festering sores with current technology. Even if they could see these “silent killers,” they have no surgical techniques to stop them from exploding. The only solution is to allow the body to heal your steadily-progressing disease by making serious dietary changes. (Medications, such as aspirin and statins, when judiciously used, can be of benefit as well.)

I realize you were frightened by the chest discomfort on both occasions (2004 and 2010). Fortunately, changing to a healthy low-fat diet (like the Pritikin, McDougall, Ornish, or Esselstyn Diets) reduces the intensity and/or stops the chest pains very quickly. Improvement in blood flow begins with the first good meal. In a matter of hours the blood naturally thins and a blood clot is less likely to form if a volatile plaque does rupture (aspirin helps too). Spontaneous healing is a powerful force — within the first week the risk of pustule rupture is greatly reduced. In a matter of months, reversal of artery disease can be seen by current technologies (angiograms and PET scans).

The truths I have given you are indisputable and most of your doctors are well aware of the solid research behind what I have told you. Your problem now is the same as everyone else’s: making the change. This is not easy, especially when you have almost no conservative medical support. If you do not change you can expect your future to be more like the past, but probably worse, because you are getting older. So for your sake, and all those who benefit from your work, I invite you to attend the next 10-day, live-in, McDougall Program in Santa Rosa, California, March 19 to 28, 2010. You can call me at (800) 941-7111. In this short time together, I promise we will change your life dramatically for the better. When that happens I will stop writing you these cautionary letters, which so far have accurately predicted your future.

Sincerely,

John McDougall, MD

September 22, 2010

EFT for PTSD Vets (cont’d)

Filed under: Dawson Church,EFT for PTSD,Gary Craig — Jan Turner @ 6:45 pm
Tags: , ,

(This is such great news and so close to my heart

Gary Craig

as EFT is the tool of choice when anything hurts me.  That Gary Craig was able to pass the torch to Dawson Church and keep his great effort alive to help our suffering vets who struggle endlessly against this terrible, destructive pain is kinda hard to keep in perspective – it feels like magic somehow.

Maybe the time has indeed come for our nation to honor “energy healing” as what it truly is – the great gift from the Universe.

May all who have contributed to this noble cause be blessed for the effort, energy, time and  resources to advance this valuable effort.    Jan)

(Shot this pic of Gary with my cell phone from one of his videos- – I kinda like it, wanted to share with you)

EFT Hearings in Congress

One of the most exciting developments for EFT in recent months has been the interest shown by various members of Congress. Both Republican and Democrat members of the House of Representatives and the Senate have used their influence to help get EFT recognized by the officials responsible for mental health in various government agencies.

The most recent such event was a round-table hearing called by Representative Dan Lungren (R, California 3rd District). Dan Lungren is a former Attorney General of California, and serves on several influential committees including the House Homeland Security Committee.

Dan called a hearing for September 15th to showcase the use of EFT for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Dan’s Legislative Analyst, Sandra Wiseman, has been passionate in her advocacy of energy medicine in general, and EFT in particular, and put a great deal of time and enthusiasm into organizing the event. Letters went out from Dan’s office to key mental health officials inviting them to be present or to send a representative. These officials included the honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of State for Veterans Affairs, and Col Robert Saum, commanding officer of the Defense Center for Excellence in Mental Health (DCoE). In an earlier report, you saw a photo of me with General Loree Sutton, former commanding officer of the DCoE. Col Saum has recently replaced Gen Sutton. In an historic event, I was invited to testify before the House Veterans Affairs Committee on July 20th, when committee chairman Bob Filner (D-San Diego) called a round-table hearing on “Innovative Treatments for PTSD and TBI.” I spoke on behalf of EFT along with clinical psychologist David Feinstein (author of Personal Mythology and other books) and fiduciary Wayne Miller. This was the first time energy medicine has had a voice in congressional testimony.

Dan’s office also requested observers from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Institute of Medicine (IOM), the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Standards Administration (SAMHSA).

Organizing the hearing was difficult. Congress only came back into session September 13th, and staffers had a backlog of business on their over-full plates. Congressional elections were less than six weeks away. Poll numbers indicated that Republicans were likely to win control of the House of Representatives. The looming elections were dominating everyone’s attention; if the Republicans won the house, they would take over all the Committees; Bob Filner would lose his chairmanship of the House Veterans Affairs Committee. Dan himself was in a tight race; it was uncertain if he would be re-elected. In two months, Dan and Sandra might be looking for jobs.

I had committed a year ago to teach EFT workshops in France starting Sep 18th, so between my schedule and the electoral calendar, Wednesday Sep 15th was the only possible window when hearings could occur.

Between finding a location in which to hold the hearings, to getting approval from the congressman of the text of the invitation letters, the invitations were sent only two weeks before the hearings. The initial responses were not positive. Shinseki’s office sent a response to a previous letter stating that EFT was not on the list of approved therapies at the VA and no circumstances were possible in which his department could contemplate using it. Some agencies declined to send observers. Staffers from other congressional offices could not attend because of the many other demands on their time. I phoned Sandra the weekend before, and she was frustrated at the lack of response. It seemed as though we might be presenting EFT to an empty room. Yet after the phone call, with my mind full of the recent setbacks, a little intuitive voice whispered, “Wednesday Miracle. Expect a Wednesday Miracle.” I phoned Sandra again and told her to expect a Wednesday Miracle, while another little voice in my head, the Eternal Skeptic, sneered at me, saying, “You’re telling people to expect a miracle, and you have no idea what you’re talking about!”

Against this far-from-optimal backdrop, with the craziness in Washington DC even more crazy than usual, the hearings were held. Sandra made a last-minute push, and when the hearing opened, there were about 35 representatives of various agencies and congressional offices present. We assembled a great team to represent EFT. Wayne Miller spoke about the rise of energy medicine, and its financial implications. Three veterans talked about their experiences: Daniel Kilbank, a Navy Seal who served in Iraq, John Dolan, who led a rifle company in Vietnam, and “Jim,” a veteran who phoned in but remained anonymous, worried about losing his PTSD benefits. Olli Toukolehto, who is about to graduate from medical school, spoke about his time in Iraq, and recovering from PTSD with EFT. Two private therapists spoke, Anita Bains, and Tracey Middleton, plus Cathy Angelica, a case manager who works at a Veterans Administration hospital. Delores Hall, the mother of veteran Carlin Sloan, told her moving story of how hopeless Carlin’s PTSD symptoms seemed until they found EFT. Carlin wrote a powerful letter which was distributed to everyone at the hearing, along with EFT research.

After the EFT presentation, Col Charles Engle from the Defense Center of Excellence in PTSD and TBI (DCoE) stood up and spoke at length. Col Engle is one of the top researchers in the PTSD field, with many papers published in peer-reviewed journals to his credit, and an expert in research design. He talked about the challenges DCoE faces, and some of the key findings that recent PTSD research has illuminated. He and I had an excellent exchange about ways in which EFT could be incorporated into some of the research projects that DCoE is planning, and after the hearing ended, we continued a warm and passionate dialog on the ways in which EFT could help reduce PTSD symptoms in veterans. Anita, Cathy, and Tracey emphasized to him how it would help troops deal with their symptoms immediately after traumatic experiences, and Delores said teaching EFT in basic training would improve warrior resiliency skills. Col Engle soaked up the research data eagerly. I promised him a copy of EFT for PTSD.

He invited us to visit DCoE as his guests, and it’s likely that Tracey, Anita, and Sandra, and perhaps the congressman too, who all live close by, will set up a time to tour his facility and learn more about how to interface with Col Engle’s work. It might also be possible to demonstrate EFT with some of his troops, since he supervises both the research and treatment branches of the mental health service. The Wednesday Miracle!

The ripples from the hearing might spread out further, as representatives from other agencies speak to their colleagues about EFT. Before the July 20th hearing, energy medicine had no place at the table at the level of national debate. Now, awareness is spreading, slowly and imperceptibly, that there might be a solution to this huge problem of PTSD. The irony is that the Veterans Administration (VA) is a massive healthcare system serving hundreds of thousands of patients with PTSD, but has no EFT. The Iraq Vets Stress Project (www.StressProject.org) has over 100 coaches and therapists trained in EFT, but few veterans. The sufferers are in one bucket, the cure in another bucket, with no pipe connecting the two buckets. While the VA receives billions of dollars each year in federal funding, the Stress Project consists of volunteers, with the few dollars in hard costs funded by private donations from the EFT community. The money is in one bucket, and the cure in another, again with no pipe connecting the two buckets. This has to change.

Since the VA is the place where veterans go for treatment, my vision is that it will become a primary site for the delivery of EFT. Imagine if the VA, now struggling with the burden of 300,000 new veterans with PTSD, in addition to the Vietnam generation, caught fire with the possibility of stamping out PTSD. For a massive and slow-moving bureaucracy, not built for change, that might sound like wishful thinking. Yet public health officials of the past generations moved mountains when cures for various diseases were put in their hands. Typhoid fever was eradicated by dedicated public employees a century ago, once its causes and cures were discovered. The same occurred for cholera, polio, and smallpox. Once a vision exists for the eradication of a plague, and the tools are put in the hands of practical people, solutions that were unimaginable before, like a cure for PTSD, become conceivable. The impossible becomes the inevitable.

I believe we are moving through just such a time in the treatment of PTSD, and that in just a year, the whole picture will have changed. By this time in 2011, thousands of VA clinicians might have been trained in EFT, and tens of thousands of veterans and warriors treated with EFT. The VA might have a timetable of less than a year before it has offered EFT to every single veteran suffering from PTSD. Just a thousand full time clinicians can provide six hour-long sessions of EFT (the minimum number we’ve found it takes) to every one of those 300,000 veterans in only a single year. Such a treatment plan would also cost only 1/3 of the $584 million congress has already spent on PTSD research in the last three years. It is thus an achievable and affordable goal, and one which would restore the possibility of normal lives to hundreds of thousands of sufferers who, right now, have no prospect of such a bright future.

This would reduce the suffering not just of the veterans themselves, but of the spouses, children, and communities affected by “transferred PTSD,” the impact of living with a suffering veteran. Recovered veterans might themselves begin to learn EFT, and teach it to other veterans. EFT could be spreading like wildfire among the veteran community.

Please imagine with me a 2012 in which the impossible has become the historical, and we are together looking back at the plague of PTSD as a phenomenon of the unenlightened past. Such visions become frameworks around which reality can organize itself, shaping the events of the present in ways that invite them to conform to the brightest possibilities of the future.

Please also share this vision of PTSD as history with anyone you believe is in a position to help make it happen. If you live in the US, you might speak to a businessman, trust, family member, or foundation with the funds to hire the core staff to expand the Iraq Vets Stress Project into an organization with much greater reach. That would put cash into the bucket containing the cure. You might contact a local veterans organization, and present EFT to them. You might talk to a spouse or officer you know, who can urge the VA to use EFT. You might volunteer to treat vets for free yourself. If we sow seeds together, we can create great change. As Margaret Mead famously observed, “Never think that a small group of committed people cannot change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has!”

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