Poison Prevention Week: A Good Reminder!

Have you checked your home lately for poisonous substances?  Oh, you don’t have children!  Well, what about your pet or your niece, nephew, or neighbor’s child?  Keeping poisons including medications, cleaning supplies and garden chemicals put away can prevent tragic accidents.  Pets have been known to drink radiator fluid because it tastes good.  Old medications that have dropped on the floor may look like candy to young children and to pets.  This week is Poison Prevention Week sponsored by PoisonPrevention.org and it’s a good time to be sure that dangerous chemicals and medications are out of reach of children and pets, whether yours or visitors’. Heavy metals, like lead and mercury, can be found in old paint that can be on metal objects in the house and around the yard and in the case of mercury on broken thermometers or thermostats.  Environmental toxins such as those found in some fertilizers could be anywhere if you do a lot of yardwork.  If you aren’t sure if you or a loved one has been exposed, blood can be tested for exposure to toxins and the environment can be tested to determine whether it is safe.  When in doubt, contact the new National Poison Control phone number, 1-800-222-1222.  This will connect you to one of 61 regional poison control centers where you can get the information you need to act quickly and, possibly, save a life.  Take a look around.  Is your home safe? Written by...

Aluminum Toxicity: It’s Everywhere!

It’s time to wake up and smell the water!  Did you know that aluminum, an extremely toxic metal, could be in your drinking water?  Scientists have known since 1911 that aluminum causes brain damage, but it is still being added to tap water to remove particulates.  According to Dr. Russell L. Blaylock studies have linked aluminum additives in the tap water to higher levels of Alzheimer’s dementia.  The aluminum accumulates in restricted areas of the brain that are the same areas affected by Alzheimer’s.  Doctors believe that aluminum interferes with critical enzymes and cell processes that are crucial to brain function. Dr. Blaylock suggests several supplements that have been found to counteract the ill effects of aluminum including Bee Propolis, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C) and Chelators such as Feralex G, compounds which remove excess metal from the body.  Acid forming foods, such as coffee, cheese, meat, black and green tea, cabbage, cucumbers, tomatoes, turnips, spinach and radishes help to dissolve aluminum.  Because aluminum can be found in some foods, read the nutritional information on the prepared foods you buy and do NOT purchase those with added aluminum.  Aluminum cooking pans can leach it into the food you are preparing if you cook in the pan for a long time so use glass or stainless steel if possible.  This toxic metal is found in high levels in soybeans and in antacids.  If you suspect that you have been or are being exposed to excessive aluminum you can be tested for exposure to it with a hair analysis.  The bottom line is: Be aware of the dangerous elements in your environment and your...

Lead Poisoning Prevention Week – Are Your Children Safe?

So you think that lead poisoning only happens to lower income children or children whose parents aren’t paying attention?  You couldn’t be more wrong!  Lead is in many common products and could even be in your drinking water.  Because you can’t see, taste or smell lead, you wouldn’t know until it’s too late.  If your house was built before 1978 there is probably lead paint in the house.  The CDC’s Lead Poisoning Prevention Week is intended to bring awareness to this common danger.  The greatest danger is to very young children under the age of six who put things in their mouths or touch anything within reach and then put their hands in their mouths.  If you are a parent, you have a responsibility not to assume that your home or environment is safe, but to do the research to make sure it’s safe. Have your drinking water and the paint in your home tested.  Look at painted toys and furniture in day care centers, at home or on playgrounds carefully as the older, peeling paint could contain lead.  Foods stored in lead based pottery or lead crystal can absorb lead that leaches from these products.  Lead poisoning is not easy to detect but some early signs and symptoms could be: Persistent tiredness or hyperactivity Irritability Loss of appetite Weight loss Reduced attention span Difficulty sleeping Constipation Don’t wait until it’s too late to take action.  Get children tested at a reputable testing facility if you suspect exposure to lead.  Lead can stay in your body for a long time and your system cannot tell it apart from calcium so it is readily absorbed.  Be proactive ,...

Can Functional Medicine Help You?

The medical profession today focuses on treating the symptoms of many diseases and disorders and not the causes.  Certainly, this isn’t the case in all situations, but too many times, for example when diagnosticians cannot identify a specific disease, as in many cases of inflammation, anti-inflammatories and antibiotics are prescribed to treat the symptoms.  This stopgap measure doesn’t cure autoimmune conditions including rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, celiac disease, thyroid disease, and the many other hard-to-classify syndromes in the 21st century.  Autoimmune disorders are runaway immune responses that cause your body to attack itself.  These disorders are a major health burden to the health care system and according to Mark Hyman, M.D., an international leader in the field of functional medicine, the annual cost of treating autoimmune diseases is twice that of cancer.  The discipline of functional medicine is not a separate field, but an emerging discipline that some physicians subscribe to which suggests that looking at the core imbalances in the body will allow discovery of the causes of these disorders.  There are steps that you can take to determine whether there are underlying issues causing your discomfort, including checking for hidden infections, checking for food allergies, getting tested for celiac disease or heavy metal toxicity, exercising regularly, fixing your gut by looking into possible irritable bowel syndrome, taking supplements, practicing deep relaxation techniques and talking to your doctor about functional medicine .  Treating these causes as opposed to taking an anti-inflammatory or repeatedly taking antibotics can give you a true cure and permanent relief. Written by...

Is Your Air Contaminated?

Mercury contamination is a serious health threat that many are not aware exists all around us.  Coal burning accounts for 40% of the atmospheric mercury that we are exposed to and the health risks are especially high for the unborn and the very young.  Coal burning plants produce approximately 45% of the electricity in the United States and are concentrated in the deep South, with Texas being the worst offender.  During 1999 and 2000 between 300,000 and 600,000 children were born with high levels of mercury in their systems leading to the strong possiblity of neurological disorders.  Exposure to mercury is known to increase the risks associated with autism, mental impairment and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. Tests to determine the level of mercury in your system are available.  Unfortunately, coal burning is not the only source of mercury in our atmosphere and the overall level found in Americans is increasing.  Until levels of mercury in the environment have been lowered there are several supplements that can protect your body for this toxic heavy metal, including N-acetyl L-cysteine, R-lipoic acid, Aged garlic extract, magnesium and selenium. Written by...