"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed.
Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."
- Arthur Schopenhauer (1788 - 1860), German philosopher

Cancer

Inflammation orchestrates the microenvironment around tumours, contributing to proliferation, survival and migration. Cancer cells use selectins , chemokines and their receptors for invasion, migration and metastasis. On the other hand,...

Allergies

An allergic reaction, is the result of an inappropriate immune response triggering inflammation. Pre- sensitised mast cells respond by degranulating , releasing vasoactive chemicals such as histamine. These chemicals propagate...

Diagnosis

Each time your heart beats, or contracts, it pumps blood into your arteries. The pressure of the blood against the artery walls is called systolic blood pressure, when blood pressure...

Myopathies

Inflammatory myopathies are caused by the immune system inappropriately attacking components of muscle, leading to signs of muscle inflammation. They may occur in conjunction with other immune disorders, such as...

Low Carb High Fat Diet

Do you want to eat real food (as much as you like) and improve your health and weight? It may sound too good to be true, but LCHF (Low Carb, High...

Cardinal signs of inflammation

Infected ingrown toenail showing the characteristic redness and swelling associated with acute inflammation. Acute inflammation is a short-term process, usually appearing within a few minutes or hours. It is characterized...

Morphologic patterns

Specific patterns of acute and chronic inflammation are seen during particular situations that arise in the body, such as when inflammation occurs on an epithelial surface, or pyogenic bacteria are...

Anti-depressants

AntidepressantsWhen it comes to the use of antidepressant medication, Dr. Oz is still in somewhat of an allopathic mode—the idea that for nearly every disease or symptom there is a...

Herbs

Herbs are generally a safe way to strengthen and tone the body's systems. As with any therapy, you should work with your health care provider to get your problem diagnosed...

Dr Mecola

  Can Your Cell Phone Cause Cancer? An article by Dr Mecola. If you think the jury's still out on whether cell phones can be dangerous to your health, then...

Sun safety tips for kids

Kids are more vulnerable to sun damage. A few blistering sunburns in childhood can double a person’s lifetime chances of developing serious forms of skin cancer. The best sunscreen is...

Cellular Component

Cellular componentThe cellular component involves leukocytes, which normally reside in blood and must move into the inflamed tissue via extravasation to aid in inflammation. Some act as phagocytes, ingesting bacteria,...

White blood cell chases bacteria

White Blood Cell Chases Bacteriahttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JnlULOjUhSQ&feature=related

Parasites and their effect on your body

News image

The word parasite comes from the Greek “parásītos” meaning “one who eats at another’s table”. Parasites live off the food we consume, leaving us the scraps. If 85% - 90%...

Misleading Beauty Products

  The 'organic' beauty products laced with 'cancer-causing' chemicals found in anti-freeze and floor cleaner Shoppers are being hoodwinked by organic beauty products laced with chemicals found in antifreeze, floor...

     

Various remedies

Which form of healing do you use most often?
 

Natural Healers' Association

Energy Medicine falls under the Natural Healers Association.

Established in February 1999, the Natural Healers Association, was founded by Dr H. Zungu, Katharine Lee Kruger and Chris Rall in Johannesburg . This national organization was registered as a Non Profit Organization on 22 May 2003 by the Department of Social Development. 

NHA aims to widen the window of opportunity to influence the development of healing legislation in South Africa to recognize the spiritual elements of International Traditional, Indigenous, Spiritual, Energy and Natural Healing Methods. By obtaining Government Recognition members will be able to provide a more cost effective and efficient healthcare service for all South Africans and others.

Read more
 


The drugs aren't working PDF Print E-mail
Triggers of ill-health

The drugs aren’t working
Thirty years ago, antibiotics were miracle drugs, treating and containing even serious illnesses like TB.  But, as their reputation grew, so did our reliance on them – and that’s one of the reasons why they’re rapidly losing their efficacy. Toni Younghusband reports


Busy people like Helen Squires* who owns a Johannesburg logistics company demand antibiotics for even routine viral infections like cold and flu.  “I never get round to having the flu vaccine, and if I do get the flu, I get my doctor to prescribe antibiotics, because I simply cant afford to take time off work,” she says.   Yet flu, sore throat, coughs and the many other ailments we take antibiotics for usually need only symptomatic treatment; the more antibiotics for usually need only symptomatic treatment; the more antibiotics we use; the more resistant bacteria become.  And we as consumers are only part of the problem.  Development of “superbugs” in hospitals, careless treatment compliance, antibiotics in agriculture, international travel, and very little new drug development have contributed to bacterial resistance growing at a frightening rate. “The world is on the brink of losing these miracle cures,” the World Health Organization warned a year ago, and the problem is only getting worse.  The WHO estimates that up to 150 000 people are now dying annually from multidrug-resistant tuberculosis.  This has significant implications for South Africa, which has the fourth-largest TB-infected population in the world.  We also have a particularly high burden of infectious diseases, including the sexually transmitted disease gonorrhea, which is threatening to spiral our of control.  In Durban, resistance to the most widely used gonorrheal treatment virtually doubled in a year.  And shigella – bacteria that infect the digestive tract and cause a wide range of symptoms, from diarrhea and vomiting to more serious complications and illnesses, particularly in young children consistently shows resistance to older antibiotics, up to 80% with some drugs.  Urinary tract infections, Candida, sepsis, pneumonia, diarrhea, meningitis and even minor skin infections are becoming tougher to treat, so the likelihood of a chest infection ending in death is not as far-fetched as it seems.

The hospital connection
Last year, US tourist was hospitalized in Vietnam for a spinal ailment.  Back home several months later, doctors fount strains of resistant bacteria in her urine, which they believe she picked up while undergoing catheterization in Vietnam,  the bacteria proved resistant to 24 different drugs.  According to the Centre’s for Disease Control and Prevention, antibiotic resistance in the United States costs an estimated $20 billion a year in excess healthcare costs, and more than 8 million additional days that people spend in hospital.  “the most dangerous places to acquire resistant organisms are hospitals, particularly in patients hospitalized for a long time, and those with chronic ailments,” says Dr Olga Perovic, principals pathologist at the South African Centre for Opportunistic, Tropical and Hospital Infections.  She blames excessive antibiotic use and poor infection control, which is often due to overburdened nursing staff, overcrowding and poor hygiene practices.  A study published in the South African Medical Journal (SAMJ) says antibiotic resistance is high in for public and private hospitals, particularly among the so-called gram-negative bacteria responsible for pneumonia, urinary tract infections, bloodstream infections and meningitis.  “The marker of this is the use of colistin, a drug that was retired from use several years ago, partly because of toxicity, and now is the only therapy available for certain multidrug-resistant infections.  When colistin fails, the patients may die”, warns Gary Kantor, an anaesthesiologist, health care improvement specialist and senior clinical consultant to Discovery Health.

Antibiotics in animals
Livestock production also relies heavily on antibiotics to prevent disease and as growth promoters, particularly  in intensively famed poultry and pigs, feedlot cattle and dairy cows.  “Tylosin, one of four growth promoters banned in Europe, was the most extensively sold antibiotic in South Africa,” noted the SAMJ.  About two-thirds of the antibiotics are mixed with the animals’ feed, but which antibiotics farmers are using and how much is difficult to assess in SA, where there is very little organized surveillance.

International travel
The growth of global trade and travel allows resistant bacteria to spread rapidly to distant countries and continents.  These bacteria have been identified in a number of countries usually in hospitalized patients.

No New Drugs
And as resistance grows, so drug development slows.  In fact, noted a representative from global pharmaceutical company Glaxo Smith Kline, the research pipeline for antibiotics is virtually dry.  “There has been a significant reduction in antibiotic research over the past 15-20 years, and only two classes of antibiotics have been developed and launched in the last 30 years,” said Brad Spellberg of the infectious Diseases Society of America Antimicrobial Availability task Force.  The easy to discover antibiotics have been discovered, and each new generation takes longer, costs more and is financially more risky for drug companies.  Antibiotics offer lower returns on investment than drugs needed to treat long-term chronic conditions, “There is a perceived lack of profitability in producing new antimicrobials,” agrees Kantor.  “We need to encourage drug companies to develop new antibiotics, and at the same time reward them for not overselling them.” It hasn’t helped that regulatory hurdles for testing and approbal of new drugs have got tougher.

The future
The only way to win the war against antibiotic resistance is for all stakeholders – governments, health organizations, pharmaceutical companies, doctors, pharmacists and individuals – to take responsibility for their part in the battle.  Governments need to invest in surveillance and monitoring and in vaccination programmes; healthcare institutions must have administrative and environmental policies in place to enable them to identify and isolate patients with multidrug-resistant bacterial infections – and must provide running water, soap and hand disinfectants as well as the personal protective equipment to prove against spread, says an editorial in the SAMJ.  Pharmaceutical companies must invest in new drugs; doctors must stop over-prescribing, and we, the patients, must understand and appreciate when antibiotics are necessary.  “It must be explained to consumers that infectious diseases are not all caused by bacterial organisms and that antibiotics don’t have an effect on viral infections.  Patients shouldn’t pressurize their doctors to prescribe antibiotics for nonbacterial diseases,” says Perovic.  “It is also important information about the spread and prevention of illnesses like TB, sexually-transmitted infections and malaria is widely and continuously disseminated.”  Unless we act now, we face a return to the pre-antibiotic era, warns the SHO, where infectious diseases become uncontrollable, more people die and healthcare costs spiral out of control.  The achievements of  modern medicine are at risk, and the success of treatments such as organ transplants, cancer chemotherapy and major surgery will be compromised.

*Name changed.

What can you do:
- Don’t expect an antibiotic to be given to you immediately for any minor infection related symptom, especially if you’re otherwise healthy, Kantor says.
- Try waiting out a fever with normal measures like paracetamol, fluids and rest.
- Check with your doctor whether an antibiotic is really needed and whether you couldn’t wait at least another 48 hours for the illness to resolve on its own.  Also ask about the side effects from antibiotics, which can be significant (allergic  reactions which are sometimes life-threatening, diarrhea, resistant infections now and in the future), and together with your doctor, weigh those up against any benefits you may get.
- If hospitalized, demand hygiene standards are adhered to – doctors and nurses should clean their hands before and after any patient contact.
- Teach your kids to wash their hand regularly
- Get vaccinated. Prevention is always better than cure.

Source – Discovery Health magazine

 

Last Updated on Friday, 15 February 2013 13:07
 
Anti-depressants PDF Print E-mail
Triggers of ill-health
Antidepressants
When it comes to the use of antidepressant medication, Dr. Oz is still in somewhat of an allopathic mode—the idea that for nearly every disease or symptom there is a pill that will likely cure it. The conventional approach to treating depression is to prescribe an antidepressant (or two). I firmly believe that antidepressants do more harm than good in most cases of depression.
Dr. Oz seeks to apply natural alternatives like St. John's, SAMe, or tryptophan in lieu of more hazardous antidepressants, but while such supplements are certainly safer, and sometimes effective, you're still not treating the underlying cause of depression. Some will argue that if you're low in serotonin, you might benefit from some tryptophan. But while this may indeed help, you're still not addressing the reason for why you're low in serotonin. There are reasons for that, and once you eliminate the root cause, you won't have to take pills of any kind... I think it's really crucial to address these underlying issues.
As for antidepressants, there's startling evidence and countless research studies that strongly suggest antidepressant drugs simply do not work. Meanwhile, every year, psychiatric drugs kill an estimated 42,000 people—that's an astounding 12,000 more people than commit suicide due to depression
Rooting Out the Causes of Depression
There are a number of very powerful strategies to address depression. One that has been proven more effective than antidepressants in a number of studies is exercise. Exercise not only relieves depressive symptoms but also appears to prevent them from recurring. Unfortunately, since no one is going to be making tens of billions of dollars on encouraging you to exercise, it has not received the amount of funding for studies that antidepressant drugs have received. However when the studies are performed, exercise continually comes out on top, demonstrating benefits above and beyond what antidepressant drugs can achieve.
Three key mechanisms appear to be that exercise:
1. Improves insulin receptor sensitivity
2. Regulates serotonin and norepinephrine, two key neurotransmitters in your brain, and
3. "Switches on" genes that increase your brain levels of galanin, a neurotransmitter that helps lessen your body's stress response
Your diet is another key factor that must be addressed. There are well-documented studies showing that animal-based omega-3 fat (DHA) is very useful. I'm a firm believer in krill oil, which is far more effectively absorbed than fish oil. You also want to make sure to optimize your diet, meaning removing sugars, grains and processed foods, and replacing them with healthy fats. Why is your diet so important for your emotional and mental health?
The Gut-Brain Connection that Can Help Explain Many Cases of Depression
One of the reasons that dietary changes work is because it helps alter your gut flora in very beneficial ways. The beneficial bacteria in your gut have a profound influence on your health, including your mental health. They produce substances that your body needs. And, your gut actually produces more serotonin than your brain does!
Your gut is frequently referred to as 'the second brain,' and when you consider the fact that the gut-brain connection is recognized as a basic tenet of physiology and medicine, and that there's no shortage of evidence of gastrointestinal involvement in a variety of neurological diseases, it's easy to see how the balance of gut bacteria can play a significant role in your psychology and behavior as well. With this in mind, it should also be crystal clear that nourishing your gut flora is extremely important, from cradle to grave, because in a very real sense you have two brains, one inside your skull and one in your gut, and each needs its own vital nourishment.
Last but certainly not least, is finding a skilled psychotherapist who can help you work through some of the contributing emotional challenges. But optimizing your physiology with the physical approaches mentioned is probably the best marriage of an approach that has a high likelihood of success.
 
Read more at http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/01/04/dr-mercola-on-the-dr-oz-show.aspx?e_cid=20120104_DNL_art_1
 
The 20-second dip PDF Print E-mail
Triggers of ill-health

The 20-second dip


Not every painful event leaves an emotion scar.  Specific processes need to occur for this to happen, and these depend on your brain-wave activity during the original event

Read more... [The 20-second dip]
 
The two-year loss-to-symptom syndrome PDF Print E-mail
Triggers of ill-health

The two-year loss-to-symptom syndrome


How does all this information relate to chronic illness?  A combination of all these processes   - 20-second dips, unconscious decisions, the RAS (Reticular Activating System) – creates a phenomenon called the ‘two year loss to symptom’ syndrome.


This syndrome refers to the widespread finding that in most chronic immune based diseases, there is a significant event involving loss about 18 months to two years before symptoms begin to develop.


This has been found in a wide range of chronic diseases, including cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, diabetes Type 1, inflammatory bowel disease and multiple sclerosis.

Read more... [The two-year loss-to-symptom syndrome]
 
How you view sadness predicts depression relapse PDF Print E-mail
Triggers of ill-health

It is very common that a person recovering from depression or coming off anti-depressants will experience some feelings of sadness. A new study sheds some light on whether or not that feeling of sadness will balloon into a depression relapse or just be a passing emotion.

This study evaluated patients who were formerly depressed and those not depressed. The participants viewed sad and neutral film clips while undergoing imaging of their brains. They were then followed for depression relapse over the next 18 months. Those who relapsed into depression were those who activated brain regions dealing with excessive rumination and processing regarding the sadness. In other words, they tended to dwell on it. 
Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 August 2011 21:53
Read more... [How you view sadness predicts depression relapse]
 
How we remember traumatic events PDF Print E-mail
Triggers of ill-health

ScienceDaily (Oct. 29, 2008) — Neuroscientists at The University of Queensland have discovered a new way to explain how emotional events can sometimes lead to disturbing long term memories.

In evolutionary terms, the brain's ability to remember a fear or trauma response has been crucial to our long term survival.

However, in the modern world, when a similar type of fear response is triggered by a traumatic event such as being in combat; being exposed to abuse or being involved a major car accident, we do not want to repeatedly re-experience the episode, in vivid detail, for the rest of our lives.

During studies of the almond-shaped part of the brain called the amygdala – a region associated with processing emotions – Queensland Brain Institute (QBI) scientists have uncovered a cellular mechanism underlying the formation of emotional memories, which occurs in the presence of a well known stress hormone.

Read more: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081028103111.htm

Last Updated on Monday, 15 August 2011 19:46
 
How the brain gives special resonance to emotional memories PDF Print E-mail
Triggers of ill-health

ScienceDaily (June 10, 2004) — DURHAM, N.C. -- If the emotional memory of a traumatic car accident or the thrill of first love are remembered with a special resonance, it is because they engage different brain structures than do normal memories, Duke University researchers have discovered.

Their new study provides clear evidence from humans that the brain's emotional center, called the amygdala, interacts with memory-related brain regions during the formation of emotional memories, perhaps to give such memories their indelible emotional resonance.

The researchers said their basic insights could contribute to understanding of the role that the neural mechanisms underlying emotional memory formation play in post traumatic stress disorder and depression.

Read more: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/06/040610081107.htm

Last Updated on Monday, 15 August 2011 19:46
 


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