An astonishing bit of research was published a few weeks ago that went largely unnoticed. It has now been
demonstrated that the knee is unique among all the joints of the body because it has a built in repair mechanism. In the right
environment, the knee can fix itself.
Yes, you heard me correctly. This means that all those
knee replacements and arthroscopic surgeries may have been completely pointless and counter productive.The researchers at Duke University were stunned as well. The key is to provide the knee with the correct environment, and the correct environment consists of
strengthening exercises for the muscles that surround and move the knee and a diet rich in Glucosamine Sulfate.
In 2007 the journal Arthritis & Rhumatism published an article looking at the role of standard anti inflammatory medication versus quality Glucosamine Sulfate supplementation. They found
that anti inflammatory medication had limited short term benefit, no long term benefit and a poor risk to benefit ratio. Glucosamine
Sulfate supplementation on the other hand demonstrated "clinically significantly symptom modification over the medium
term and intriguing suggestion of possible disease structure modification." Glucosamine sulfate works.
A word of caution however for those of you with shellfish allergies. Most commercial Glucosamine Sulfate supplements
are made with shellfish so be sure to check first. As far as dosage is concerned, the recommendation is to take about 1500mg
at a time once per day to start. This ensures that your blood levels will be high enough for this food supplement to do some
You may have heard the news that a diet rich in broccoli, bok choy and other "cruciferous" vegetables may lower the risk of cancer related
illness and disease. This particular study examined the dietary intake of women in China who been diagnosed with breast cancer.
A "dose related" correlation between the consumption of cruciferous vegetables and health was discovered. In practical
terms this means that the greater the amount of cruciferous veggies you eat, the lower your risk. Cruciferous vegetables are
characterized by their fibrous crossing internal structure. Examples of Cruciferous vegetables include:
I'll have much more on this topic
in the future. In the mean time, eat well and be healthy!
Parkinson's Disease treatment and Mind Body Integration
Tai Chi has been found to help those suffering from myofascial pain disorders such as fibromyalgia and age
related health problems such as osteoarthritis. The New England Journal of Medicine has just published an article indicating that Tai Chi is effective in the treatment of Parkinson's Disease. This study has
found that Tai Chi is more effective in the treatment of Parkinson's disease than resistance training (weight lifting) and
more effective than stretching.The benefits were seen in three areas.
Posture and postural
Length of stride
This makes sense because Parkinson's is a disease effecting the areas of the brain that control movement rather
Tai Chi is a form of exercise that integrates brain and
body. The movements are purposeful, they require focus, are well thought out and carefully performed. This is the key to it's
I have no affiliation with family physician Dr. Paul Lam, but in my opinion, his
videos are a valuable resource.
Berry Update! New research indicates that berries improve communication between brain cells and prevent "age related degeneration."
Often when I read an MRI report of the brain in an older individual, a common finding is shrinkage of the brain,
this is "age related neurodegeneration." In other words, the brain shrinks as it ages due to gradual progressive
nerve cell death. We now have evidence that eating berries helps prevent this from happening.
summary, eating berries daily will improve your memory, improve stability of brain cells and slow down the aging process to
fight dementia and cognitive decline.
I'm often asked if Yoga is an effective, healthy exercise. In my opinion, it certainly is healthy
when done in a mindfull moderate manner. A recent article in the popular press describes many of the issues associated with strenuous exercises like Yoga if not done correctly.
Exercise needs to push your abilities in order for the body and mind to adapt and become stronger. This adaptation
is exciting to see and experience. However when performing any type of exercise, it is important to
be aware of the limitations of your body. I have seen hip, neck, knee, shoulder, elbow and low back
injuries due to incorrectly exercising. If you experience the sudden onset of
pain during exercise, stop immediately and seek professional help. If an instructor is pushing you too
hard, stop and find a new instructor. If a particular type of exercise is causing injuries, stop and find a new type of exercise.
Some post exercise soreness is normal due to the adaptation of muscles and tendons and this typically goes away in
24-48 hours after onset. If the soreness does not diminish, a longer interval of recovery may be necessary before another
session of exercise is performed. If the soreness doesn't resolve, seek consultation with a qualified professional such as
myself. Remember, exercise is best when it's fun, enjoyable and injury free.
My friend and collegue, Dr. Robert Adams was recently featured on the television show, "Healing Quest." He was
shown demonstrating an application of functional neurology we use in the field of Chiropractic Neurology. I have had similar
results with my own patients.
What are the two easiest things you can do to improve your health and increase your life span?
Aerobic exercise. Aerobic exercise improves memory, learning and the ability to think clearly. These remarkable findings were published in
the journal Neuroscience. The benefits were found in test subjects who exercised at 80% of their aerobic
capacity one hour per day, five days per week for five months. They have been attributed to increase blood flow providing
increased nutrients to the brain. Poor lifestlye habits have proven to have dramatically adverse effects on health and longevity. People that don't get regular exercise, have poor eating habits, use alcohol and smoke have significantly
higher rates of stroke, heart disease and reduced lifespan.
Eat smart. A Mediterranean style of diet rich in vegetables, fruits, fish, nuts, seeds and olive oil has been demonstrated to decrease
mental decline and improve heart and brain health.
Green Tea and Olive Oil are proving to be major factors in disease prevention. The antioxidant compounds
found in Green Tea are absorbed into your body and have now been demonstrated to penetrate into the tissues of the eyes including
the lens and retina, potentially preventing diseases such as glaucoma. The protective effects of Green Tea consumption appear to last up to 20 hours and maximum concentration in eye tissue occurred from between one half to 12 hours
All right chocolate lovers I have good news for you! A diet that contains 50 grams of Chocolate per week may decrease your
risk of having a stroke by 22% and your chance of death from stroke by 46%.
There are two mechanisms that can cause
a stroke (also known as a cerebral vascular accident or CVA). An Ischemic stroke is caused by the blockage of an artery
to a region of the nervous system. Because the circulation is blocked the tissue supplied by that artery undergoes a series
of changes that makes the tissue less stable and at risk of death.
The other type of stroke is Hemorrhagic. This is
when an artery leaks blood causing physical damage to the nervous system.
Chocolate is rich in antioxidant polyphenols
that reduce inflammation. Inflammation of arteries is a risk factor in the development of cerebralvascular disease and cardiovascular
disease. Dark chocolate is richer in polyphenols than other types of chocolate. Fruits and vegetables are also rich in polyphenols,
however in the realm of polyphenols Berries are Queen.
A smart strategy in stroke prevention involves stress and weight
management through regular aerobic exercise and a diet rich in polyphenols, B vitamins and Omega 3 Fatty acids. Think grilled
fish and richly colored vegetables with a nibble of dark chocolate and berries for dessert.