January / February 2008
( to: Health Newsletter Archive )
Greetings once again and welcome to this edition of the Archangel Health News! We hope that you will find the information presented below informative and helpful towards your goal of optimum health. As always, please feel free to e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you require additional information, have a particular health question or concern, or would like to suggest a favorite health-related web site or health topic for inclusion in a future issue of our newsletter. We are always happy to correspond with our valued subscribers and customers!
TOP FOODS FOR HEALTH
The old adage "you are what you eat" is so true. It is what you eat that fuels and nourishes your body. The foods you choose affect its function. It makes sense to eat the best foods possible. Nowadays, it may be more difficult to eat a healthful diet so try to incorporate these foods in your recipes and meals:
FIBER, SECONDHAND SMOKE, & YOUR LUNGS
Childhood exposure to secondhand smoke has long-lasting effects but fruit fiber may help!
A recent study finds early life exposure to secondhand smoke can produce life-long respiratory problems. The study of 35,000 adult nonsmokers in Singapore found that those who lived with a smoker during childhood had more respiratory problems, including chronic cough. Study participants who reported eating more fruit and soy fiber as adults seemed to be protected against some of the negative health effects often associated with early tobacco exposure.
Individuals 18 or younger, living with one or more smokers, were more than twice as likely to suffer from chronic dry cough as adults, according to a new study published by researchers at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), a part of the National Institutes of Health, the University of Minnesota, and the National University of Singapore. This paper, which appears online in Thorax, is the largest study to date on the effects of childhood exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) on later respiratory disease, and the first to include data on dietary intake.
"This research adds to a growing body of evidence that exposure to secondhand smoke early in life has health consequences that can last a lifetime," said Dr. David Schwartz, director of the NIEHS. "In addition to finding ways to reduce the exposure of children to tobacco smoke and other environmental pollutants, we also need to look for ways to reduce the disease burden."
The data for this study was collected from the Singapore Chinese Health Study, a population of men and women of Chinese ethnicity ranging in ages from 45 to 74 at enrollment, who live in Singapore. The 35,000 nonsmokers provided information regarding ETS before and after age 18, a medical history including information on respiratory symptoms of chronic cough, phlegm production and asthma diagnosis, as well as information on dietary intake.
Chronic cough was defined as occurring on most days for at least three months of the year and lasting more than two years in a row. More than 45 percent of the study participants reported having fathers who smoked, and 19 percent reported having mothers who smoked. The researchers found that more smokers in the home during childhood was linked to a greater incidence of chronic cough and chronic phlegm.
"Because we had previously found in this Singaporean population data suggesting that a diet high in fruit and soy fiber may reduce the incidence of chronic respiratory symptoms, we decided to study the impact of fiber on problems associated with early tobacco exposure," said NIEHS researcher Stephanie London, M.D. "We actually found that people who ate even a small amount of fruit fiber had less chronic cough related to environmental tobacco smoke."
Study participants who ate more than 7.5 grams of fiber each day had fewer health effects associated with ETS. This is equivalent to eating about two apples a day. Dr. London pointed out that the average weight of the Singapore study participants was 127 pounds. She also added that most Singaporeans get their fiber from fruits, vegetables, and soy.
"Fiber may have beneficial effects on the lung," said Dr. London. "It seems to have the ability to reduce blood glucose concentrations, reduce inflammation, and enhance antioxidant processes. All of these may help to protect the lung against environmental insults, such as ETS in childhood. However, the possible benefits of fiber should not lessen the importance of reducing exposure to environmental tobacco smoke."
For more information about environmental health issues, visit http://www.nih.gov.
MENOPAUSE: A NATURAL PASSAGE
Webster’s Dictionary defines puberty as "the stage of physical development when secondary characteristics develop and sexual reproduction first becomes possible." The definition of menopause is "to bring to an end."
In the old days, menopause was considered a thing of dread where women became nervous and withered and sometimes "lost their minds," or so the old wives’ tales go. In the past, most women were treated with hormone replacement therapy (HRT) to reduce the symptoms of menopause. Now many health-care practitioners are cautious in prescribing this synthetic way of treating menopause because of the well-publicized possibility of complications. Many women as well as physicians are seeking more natural ways to deal with this transitional stage of their life. The good news is that menopause will not last forever, and a woman’s body will adjust to the decrease in hormones. A healthy woman can enjoy her postmenopausal life.
For those who choose not to go with HRT, other alternative treatments include natural food supplements such as dong quai, soy and black cohosh. Menopause, which normally happens in women between the ages of 35 and 58, is as natural in the cycle of life as puberty. It occurs when the ovaries are no longer capable of ovulation and production of estrogen. Menopause has taken place when the menstrual cycle has ceased for one year.
The most common complaints of women during menopause are hot flashes, excessive perspiration, vaginal dryness, urinary incontinence and insomnia. The insomnia is usually a result of the hot flashes. Some women experience depression due to the hormonal changes and stress associated with the aging process. There are also some complaints of heart palpitations, cold hands and feet, and difficulty sleeping. Aching joints and muscles are also common complaints. Some have nausea, constipation and flatulence.
Any one of these symptoms would be enough to cause anxiety in a woman who had been healthy all her life. But when she begins to experience a variety of menopausal symptoms, it can be life altering.
To help relieve some of the effects of menopause, be sure to get plenty of fresh air and exercise. Exercise, such as yoga, tai chi or simply walking, increase the level of endorphins in the brain, which increase a sense of well-being. It also improves circulation and helps strengthen the body. Foods high in nitrates and saturated fats and red meat should be limited.
"Menopause is a time for women to fully and completely reevaluate their life: goals, relationships, difficulties and dreams, and to begin to ‘speak and live their truth,’" wrote Christiane Northrup, M.D., in her book The Wisdom of Menopause. Lifestyle changes including a healthful diet, exercise, fresh air, good hydration, relaxation, and a strong appreciation for the different stages in our lives can make menopause a temporary inconvenience for most healthy women.
WELLNESS QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
Q & A #1:
Serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) has been used for screening for prostate cancer for many years. It was originally hoped that, with further use, its accuracy would be improved. But a new study has provided more questions than answers. In this study, prostate biopsies revealed cancer in as many as 27% of men with a PSA level between 3 and 4 ng/ml - values hitherto considered "normal". 7% of men with values below 2.5 ng/ml were found to have cancer. However, it was not possible to say if the cancers found in these men were, in fact, aggressive, or if they would have merely smoldered until the person died of something else. Many small prostate cancers diagnosed on biopsy are really quite benign. Another study has shown that PSA levels correlate best with the actual weight of the prostate gland - whether this is due to cancer or benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH or "prostatism"). The true value of PSA determinations has been found to lie in the rate at which they increase over time. Thus if the rate of increase in men with cancer that was removed by prostatectomy were greater than 2 ng/ml per year, the 5-year mortality rate was 5%; if the rate of increase was lower than 2 ng/ml per year, the mortality over 5 years was 0.3%. Clearly you should discuss this with your urologist, so that the actual value of your PSA test (if you have one) can be assessed in relation to the results of your digital rectal exam and any symptoms you may have.
Q & A #2:
Made from soybean curd, tofu is rich in protein. It is a cheese-like food made by curdling fresh soymilk. The curds are pressed into cakes and textures vary from soft to firm depending on how much water is extracted during processing. It also has no cholesterol and is easily digestible. Tofu varieties include "cotton" and "silk," firm and soft, respectively. Tofu was first made in China approximately 2000 years ago. Some people use tofu in place of sour cream, yogurt, or mayonnaise in dips, spreads, and salad dressings.
Q & A #3:
Most likely you have heard that eating soy, because it is high in protein, is healthy. Some nutrition experts believe that soy is the best form of protein you can get, while others are indifferent, and still others say that soy should be avoided at all cost. You can find all kinds varying opinions about soy on the internet. A series of articles on the negatives of soy can be found at: http://www.mercola.com/article/soy/index.htm
Q & A #4:
To answer your question we need to ask you another question - what do you mean by "eat sensibly"? Middle-aged and older adults should take in about 400 micrograms of folate daily. Unless you are eating plenty of "cruciferous" vegetables (e.g. cabbage, kale, radishes, broccoli, Brussels sprouts), chili peppers, and/or milk, you may not be getting enough folate to keep your homocysteine at a healthy low level. In this case, either change direction with your diet, or take a daily multivitamin with enough folate in it. A good alternative is to eat a cold breakfast cereal which is fortified to contain adequate amounts of the usual vitamins and minerals. Low folate and/or riboflavin intake can lead to an elevated homocysteine level, and this in turn is linked with an increased risk of heart disease and/or mental decline. Recently, it has been found that high folate intake is accompanied by a decreased risk of developing high blood pressure. It is believed that folate has important beneficial effects on the inner lining cell layer of blood vessels (the endothelium), and this delays the development of atherosclerosis, the most common degenerative arterial disease.
Start off the New Year right and include DAILY BIOBASICS in your diet - it is a "must" for anyone who feels that they do not eat properly or for those who are concerned about their daily nutritional needs. Daily BioBasics is a powdered dietary supplement that you mix with your favorite juice or water. Just two scoops per day of this all-natural, safe, and effective product contains all of the essential multivitamins, minerals, fiber, essential digestive enzymes, super green algae, vegetable extracts, herbs, and super-antioxidant protector nutrients that your body needs to detoxify, optimize energy and vitality, boost the immune system, lower the risks of degenerative diseases, and improve your overall level of health and wellness!
A one month supply of DAILY BIOBASICS costs just $55.00 regular price (or just $49 for AutoShip members which includes FREE shipping!) Please e-mail us for more details about the AutoShip program or request that we register you as an ASAP Member by indicating that in the COMMENTS field located at the bottom of our secured online order form. Additional details about DAILY BIOBASICS can be found on our web site at http://www.aomega.com/ahs/d6132a.htm To ORDER online, by phone, or by mail, please see http://www.aomega.com/ahs/ordering.htm (if you are already a Life Plus member, please remember to reference your member PIN on your order).
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Thank you for reading this edition of the Archangel Health News and may God bless you and your health!
Darrin and Sandi Quiles
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Copyright © 2008 by Sandi and Darrin Quiles. All rights reserved.
Please note: the information contained herein has been compiled from various sources. The above statements have not been evaluated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. We make no claims, either expressed or implied, that any products mentioned in this newsletter will cure disease, replace prescription medication, or supersede sound medical advice.