Alternative Medicine News – September 3, 2012

Here are some of the choice news items in alternative medicine this week.

Today’s stories include…
8 Things You Should NEVER EatIf you look at labels the following information probably won’t surprise you. However, if you don’t read ingredients, it will serve you well to read this.

The reason labels are important is that there are over 3,000 things approved to add to food. This approval comes from our friends at the FDA. The list includes things like:

  • Food color
  • Preservatives
  • Mold inhibitors
  • Flavor enhancers (including MSG)
  • Artificial flavorings

These things hide under a variety of names. So the more you know, the better off you are in avoiding them.

The author of “Eat This, Not That” has a helpful list. He highlights 8 of the worst offenders and tells you why. You will have seen many of these, but a couple will be new to you. The weirdest one? A flavoring made from the anal sac of beavers. Sound appealing?

This very entertaining and well-written story is on Yahoo. You can get the full list here.

Jon Barron
You Say What Is In My Drinking Water?If you are drinking water from your tap, you are getting more than you bargain for.

For some time there have been reports of drugs in city water supplies. There are many different sources for the contamination. But the argument has been there are only trace amounts. No problem, right?


It turns out that water treatment plants cannot get all the drugs out of water. Animals were reacting to these drugs. And that provided the early clues about their effects in water.

The list of drugs that end up in water is a long one. And, of course, even a small amount of a drug can have an effect.

For example, there is a strong association between high oral contraceptive use and prostate cancer. Odd, especially since only women take the pill, but only men have prostates.

The clearest explanation for this is that estrogen ends up in the water. And men taking in estrogen are much more likely to have prostate cancer.

No matter what level of drugs come out of the tap, it is always more than you need. It’s a good reason to take water filtration seriously.

Jon Barron always writes a good article. This one is no exception. You can read it here.

Medicine World
Extra Pounds May Lower Death Rates in the ElderlyToo much weight is always bad for you. Or at least that’s what we’ve been told.

Now, research shows that isn’t true for everyone. People over 80 do better if their weight is higher.

In fact, if they were in the “overweight” category on the BMI scale, they had lower mortality rates. And those in the same age group who had very low BMI numbers had a higher mortality rate.

The conclusion of the study was that the ideal is to have moderate weight at age 21. Then, gradually gain weight as you age. That’s very different than conventional wisdom.

Of course BMI (Body Mass Index) is just a guide. Without further information – like how much of the weight is fat and how much muscle – it can’t really tell much about someone’s health. But BMI does give you convenient gauge to work with.

Medicine World has the details. The link is here.

Al Sears, MD
Unexpected Help For Hearing LossWhen you can’t hear well, it changes your quality of life.

Since we are all exposed to very high levels of noise regularly, this is a problem. Too much high-volume sound damages your ears. Airplanes, cars, loud music, etc. all contribute.

Fortunately, there are natural ways to protect yourself. Specifically, there are three nutrients you can take. Here’s the list:

  • NAC – You’ve read other articles about NAC in Balance Point. It turns out that in addition to the many health benefits it offers, it helps protect hearing.
  • Magnesium – Most modern foods have less magnesium than 100 years ago. And even a small amount of it will help keep hearing loss at bay.
  • Vinpocetine – This extract from the periwinkle plant protects your brain. But it also helps reverse hearing loss. As a bonus, it is often helpful in ringing in the ears.

Dr. Al Sears has the scoop. You can read his story and get the details here.

Bottom Line Health
Want To Help Your Brain? Do The Opposite…Keeping your brain sharp is more important over time.

There are, of course, supplements to take. But exercising your brain is just as important. It’s a “use it or lose it” deal. Here’s a previous Balance Point article on 7 ways to improve your brain.

Now there is evidence of yet another way you can juice up your brain power. And it’s easy.

The trick is to use your opposite hand. For example, if you usually eat with your right hand, eat with your left instead.

Sounds pretty simple, doesn’t it?

Dr. Daniel Amen has done a lot of research on brain function. The tip comes from him. Author Marjory Abrams has the scoop. You can read the article here.

All the best to you for your health and happiness,

Dr. Bruce Eichelberger

Dr. Bruce

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