Chronic Disease Caused by Consumer Demand

23 05 2016
Traveling and enjoying good company keeps a mind and body fit healthy. Astoria OR, column.

Traveling and enjoying good company keeps a mind and body healthy.  Marc at the Column, Astoria OR.

One of the first articles I wrote in November 2007 was inspired by a network news and publications article titled “Is Cancer in Your Tub?”  What caught my attention were two glycol ether solvents used in everyday household, food and hygiene products.  Also a key ingredient used in anti-freeze.  Well I knew I didn’t want to drink or eat anti-freeze, so this caught my eye.

The thing I didn’t put into perspective back then was how the consumer created a convenience demand in the marketplace.  A choice that continues to make the populous sick and cause disease.  And the best way to bring “you” the reader up to speed is to start from the beginning… 8 years ago.

What exactly are these two solvents and why would an anti-freeze ingredient be in our home cleaners, hygiene and food products?  “Glycol ethers are a group of solvents based on alkyl ethers of ethylene glycol or Propylene Glycol (PG) commonly used in paints and cleaners.  These solvents typically have a higher boiling point, together with the favorable solvent properties of lower-molecular weight ethers and alcohols [Wikipedia 2016].”

AntiFreeze

Note the main Ingredient: ethylene glycol and Warning Label.

Note the main Ingredient: ethylene glycol and Warning Label.

“Ethylene glycol are still used in anti-freeze preparation, household, automotive cleaners, laundry cleaners, etc.  Propylene glycol is also used in many of the same consumer products, such as home cleaners, hair, cosmetics, creams, lotions, soaps, shampoos, toothpaste, pet foods, deodorants, etc. (GoodGuide 2011).”  The list of products containing both glycol ethers is long.

Propylene glycol is also used as a food stabilizer in many processed foods as I’m now more familiar.  And the FDA stands by their PG approval-to-market SAFE for human consumption like tens of thousands of other consumer chemicals.  “The Food and Drug Administration has classified Propylene Glycol as “generally recognized as safe,” which means that it is acceptable for use in flavorings, drugs, and cosmetics, and as a direct food additive. According to the World Health Organization, the acceptable dietary intake of propylene glycol is 25 mg of propylene glycol for every kilogram (kg) of body weight (ATSDR 2015).”

The unique qualities of PG is it “provides unique inherent properties with regard to holding/attracting both water- and oil-based substances.  In food, it is used to retain food color pigments and provide for homogeneous distribution within the mixture.”

    IMG_20130405_175029It is also used as a “Solvent and carrier for flavor and color in food and beverage manufacturing processes, for drinks, biscuits, cakes, sweets.  ‘Thickener, clarifier and stabilizer in food and beverage such as beer, salad dressings or baking mixtures (PO/PG 2016).”

PG is also used as the main liquid component of e-cigarettes.  For example, “PG exposure per puff of the Ruyan® e-cigarette.  The cartridge of the Ruyan® e-cigarette contains approximately 1g [or 1000mg’s] of PG, of which 0.9 g is extractable from the pad. The concentration of PG in the mouth from one drag of the Ruyan® e-cigarette (900 mg per cartridge, 300 puffs = 3mg) is 3 mg per mouthful.”

It should also be noted within the report there is an “Inhalational Minimal Risk Levels (MRLs)” citation.   “No MRLs for acute- or chronic-duration inhalation exposure to propylene glycol were derived because data are insufficient.”  And this report also highlights “Carcinogenicity.  Stating ‘There is no evidence that PG is a carcinogen.”

But a “SAFE use” contradiction is also apparent within the same report.  “MRLs of acute- or chronic duration inhalation… data are insufficient (Laugesen 2008).”  Or to better clarify and understand the meaning of this statement, ‘absent of long-term risk data on health’ OR ‘No Evidence for lack of long term data.’

To better relate to the FDA approval process, think about it this way.

NW Nutria

NW Nutria is not used in lab studies and is much more interesting to gander upon than a field mouse.

Most FDA approvals are based on animal studies of relatively short duration.  Whereas the data is extrapolated to make relative to human metabolism, weight, environment, habits, dosage, frequency etc.  One last point to make, we are humans, not rodents.  So one must ask… how relevant are these studies to human DNA and disease?  And how much pressure is there to release and approve a new product to market?   And once released don’t industries have something to loose should an approved SAFE chemical be recalled from the marketplace?  The answers to these questions are economically and politically by design and connected.  The short of it is, It’s all about special interest power, control and money!

To date, I was curious to see if GP was removed, banned or listed as a health risk on any consumer product.  Of course I wasn’t surprised to find anything of the kind.  However glycol ethers may be the least of consumer product toxin worries.

Prior to reading that November 2007 publication, consumer safety advocates warned the world years earlier of carcinogenic household items.      For instance,  On February 23 a “1998 CBS’s morning talk show, ‘This Morning’ reported the findings of a study from the US Department of Health and Human Services’ National Toxicology Program that sent shock waves throughout the cosmetics and personal care products industries.”

Personal hygiene should be replaced with green products to reduce health risk associated accumulative daily toxin uptake.

Personal hygiene and home cleaners can be replaced with green products to reduce health risk associated with daily toxin uptake.

Fast forward… the moment of truth, our everyday household items have carcinogenic toxins as exposed by various laboratory controlled studies.  They “confirm serious health issues with long term use of our FDA Qualified “SAFE” products! (Young 2011).”  [Shocker?  Not at all.  Simply look at the billions of dollars industries spend and profits made.  Changing profitable industry culture course is an act of God.]

During 2007 I also procured brochures from author Debra Lynn Dadd, “Please Protect Yourself from Household Toxics.”  I handed them out to clients for consumer safety information and audit of household products.

Clients audited bathroom and laundry cabinets. They replace all cleaning and hygiene products with natural/organic products.

Clients audited bathroom hygiene and laundry cabinets. They replaced toxic products with natural/organic ones.

I recommended they audit and remove the toxic products and go green.  And advised them to keep diaries of certain medical symptoms which had abated after removal of certain toxic products after reading Dadd‘s article.

She stated, “While certain people may be more sensitive than others, and some chemical(s) may bring on reactions only after many years of repeated exposure, I discovered household cleaning and bathing chemicals may bring on reactions only after many years of repeated exposure.”

Many of the home use product(s) that increased certain health risks listed in the brochure were cancer, birth defects, genetic changes, heart disease.  Literally any symptom imaginable both physical and psychological could be linked to a common household product.

“Scientist admit these toxic chemicals can lodge in our endocrine system contributing to thyroid problems, diabetes, weight gain, and infertility.  At greatest risk are fetuses, children, the elderly, and those who are already ill, but these chemicals are threatening the health of everyone, every day (Barry 2013).”

I also cited an AARP Bulletin from May 2008, Vol.49 No. 4, titled “Hazards at Home,” within that original 2007 article by Reed Karaim.  Making similar statements as Debra Lynn Dadd.  Karaim followed in suit, “older people are more likely to have conditions – such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, respiratory disease and diabetes.”  Adding to the collective demographic concern “Older people are more like infants and children in their ability to fend off toxic assaults says Sandra Steingraber, the author of Living Downstream:  An Ecologist Looks at Cancer and the Environment.”

What's in your Laundry Room?

What’s in your Laundry Room?

Within the same Bulletin a statement of stern warning is made over the use of home “Cleaners – Chemicals to avoid in cleaners, says McRandle (Paul McRandle, Deputy Editor at the National Geographic Green Guide), run from ammonia, which is known to trigger asthma, elements in chlorine bleach, which is a lung irritant and will kill you if you swallow it, to things like glycol ethers, which are used to dissolve grime and dirt, and can cause nerve damage (Karaim 2008).”

PG is still listed safe by the FDA.  However, I’ve no doubt science will prove the long-term PG health risk effects through e-cig smoker data.  By studying habits of consumption, dose, toxicity and patients presenting similar “cause and effect” symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and disease connections, and discovery commonalities will occur over time.

Convenience does not come without a health risk price.

Convenience does not come without a health risk price.

The most disheartening and overwhelming reality is there are more chemicals used in foods and household products than ever before.  Including expanded use of glycol ethers in foods.  Also “Of the more than 80,000 chemicals currently used in the United States, most haven’t been adequately tested for their effects on human health (NRDC 2016).”

It appears most likely disease is linked to a cocktail of multiple consumer products, not just one.  “Chemicals found in household products may be causing significant increases in cancers, diabetes, obesity and falling fertility, the European Environment Agency has warned. ‘In recent decades, there has been a significant growth in many human diseases and disorders including breast and prostate cancer, male infertility and diabetes. ‘Many scientists think that this growth is connected to the ‘rising levels of exposure’ to mixtures of some chemicals in widespread use (Smith 2012).”

“Some of the most pervasive chemicals are used in plastic products, and are known as “endocrine disruptors.” Convenience food products are bagged, bottled and plastic lined canned containers.

Almost all food and drink containers have varying levels of toxins that leach into consumables.

Almost all food and drink containers have varying levels of toxins that leach into consumables.

“On February 19, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced a report co-produced with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), titled: State of the Science of Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals.” Concern over the increase of chemical use in convenience foods, household and personal use products.

My takeaway and interpretation of past and current trends, scientific studies and consumer health risk and industrial data; these chemicals are destroying or mutating DNA within cellular structures of endocrine [hormone] and neurological function leading to serious and chronic disease.

“The report suggests a ban of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) may be needed to protect the health of future generations. ‘Health risks include: Non-descended testes in young males, breast cancer in women, prostate cancer in men, developmental effects on the nervous system in children, attention-deficit hyperactivity in children, thyroid cancer (Mercola 2013).”

Marc clearing his Northern CA backwoods property. Wilderness living has its perks.

Marc clearing his Northern CA backwoods property.  Wilderness lifestyle has its perks.  And is as close as I can get to the way the pioneers lived.

“In some ways, our ancestors had it easy. Because they didn’t have chemically treated food and chemically enhanced kitchenware, their diets and cooking practices exposed them to fewer toxic hazards (Breast Cancer Fund 2016).”

Unfortunately Big-Ag, food processors and manufactures see a huge demand for convenience products with chemicals that make our foods smell, and taste and look more appetizing with long storage life.   Including cheap and toxic convenient household and hygiene products.  We’re addicted to all of them.   As long as consumer convenience demand and profits are high and long term health risk is not connected to an FDA approved SAFE chemical… the toxic environmental uptake and increase of insidious disease won’t be in decline anytime soon.

Nothing has changed much after years of health risk warnings from consumer safety advocates, epidemiologists and independent lab studies, etc.   Chemicals used in products are on the rise and so is disease.

Big Ag-Corps may appear green. Health conscious consumers should qualify... was the product produced by a certified organic farm?

Big Ag-Corps may appear green.  Health conscious consumers should seek to qualify the quality of product on labels… I.e., was the product produced by a certified organic farm?

The big winners are Chemical, Pharmaceutical, Big-Ag and Health Care industries.  To include a plethora of consumer product and processor manufactures.  Why do I list Health care services and Big-Pharm industries?

Treating acute and chronic disease is big business.  Cures are not.

“If it’s not about the money, what is it?”  I’d say it’s 2-fold.  Customers need and want lower cost and convenience products.  And industries are more than happy to continue providing profitable and cheap product that meet demand.

Until consumer demand changes to provide healthier products for you and your family, there are things you can do to reduce household and environmental toxins.

Recommendations,

What can you do to protect your family?

What can I say. I like sponge Bob. But this ones not made out of plastic toxins.

What can I say. I like sponge Bob. Although not made out of plastic toxins… it is likely made of a percentage of synthetic materials with toxins.

1   Don’t give plastic toys to small children unless marked BPA or Phthalates free.  “On October 15, 2007, California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law AB 1108 (also known as the California Toxic Toys Bill), making California the first state in the country to ban the use of phthalates from children’s products (West 2016).”

2   Eat less processed and convenience foods and consume more whole foods.

3   Purchase organic ‘green’ home cleaners, cosmetics and personal hygiene products.

4   Wear PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) e.g. gloves, mask, boots, hoodie, pants, long sleeve shirts, apron when using non-green cleaning products.

5   Read food, home cleaning products and hygiene labels – if you can’t pronounce the ingredients, it’s most likely a chemical preservative, additive, stabilizer, dye, solvent, etc., of varying toxic quality.  Go Green and Organic as often as possible and available.

Purchase green-organic when possible..

Purchase natural/organic when possible..

6   Don’t consume the same drinks and foods every day, especially convenience and fast foods.

7   Consume plenty of fruits, vegetable and water.

8.  Infrequently purchase water, juice, sodas and foods stored in plastics and cans.  Glass is the best container to store foods and drinks.

9   Check dates of frozen foods and use within a 30 day window.

10  Vent and circulate fresh outdoor air throughout the home by leaving windows cracked ¼” open.  Clean HVAC systems and ductwork per manufacturer recommendation.

11  Become a conscientious consumer safety advocate and practitioner and family educator of green/natural products.

12  Become a voice and vote.  Use your 1st Amendment rights to petition government and special interests to win voter-consumer choice.  Be an advocate, or support to ban or remove certain toxic ingredients from consumer goods and services.  Or call for label laws that inform shoppers ingredients known to cause cancer and other chronic disease.

Conclusion,

If consumers don’t demand the marketplace change; then realize cost and convenience has greater value to a majority populace than long term health risk.   With this reality and without consumer and health risk prevention education in our K-12 schools, it should be no surprise new generations don’t value healthy lifestyle.  While disease and health care costs continue to rise.

We have no one to blame but ourselves.

Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2016 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free monthly newsletter.

References,

ATSDR. “Public Health Statement for Propylene Glycol.” ATSDR. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 21 Jan. 2015. Web. 20 May 2016.

Barry, R. M. “Please…Protect Yourself from Household Toxics Pamphlet by Debra Lynn Dadd.” Melaleuca Cleaning Products. RM Barry Publications, 2005-13. Web. 20 May 2016.

Breast Cancer Fund. “Chemicals in Food.” Breast Cancer Fund. Breast Cancer Fund, n.d. Web. 20 May 2016.

GoodGuide. “What Kinds of Consumer Products May Contain This Chemical?” ETHYLENE GLYCOL — Consumer Products. GoodGuide, 2011. Web. 20 May 2016.

Karaim, Reed. “Hazards at Home.” AARP Bulletin Today. AARP, May 2008. Web. 20 May 2016.

Laugesen, Murray. Safety Report on the Ruyan® E-cigarette Cartridge and Inhaled Aerosol. Rep. Christchurch, New Zealand: Health New Zealand, 2008. Print.

Mercola, Dr. Joseph. “Common Household Chemicals Linked to Human Disease.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 8 July 2013. Web. 20 May 2016.

NRDC. “Health, Toxic Chemicals.” NRDC. Natural Resources Defense Council, 2016. Web. 20 May 2016.

PO/PG. “Food, Taste, Fun and Convenience.” – Propylene Glycol. PO/PG Sector Group of Cefic, Brussels, n.d. Web. 20 May 2016.

Smith, Graham. “Chemicals in Household Items Are ‘causing Huge Increase in Cancer, Obesity and Falling Fertility'” Mail Online. Associated Newspapers, 11 May 2012. Web. 20 May 2016.

West, Larry. “Toxic Toys: Chemicals in Toys Endanger Children.” About.com News & Issues. About.com, n.d. Web. 20 May 2016.

Young, Dr. “Is Cancer in Your Tub.” Is Cancer in Your Tub. Dr. Young, 19 Jan. 2011. Web. 20 May 2016.





Manage Irritable Bowel Syndrome

22 11 2015

Hike where ever in comfort. Even in an inactive Hawaiian volcano

Updated: Nov 22, 2015

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) may cause much discomfort in the large intestine. But it is not considered a serious health risk. It also does not cause more serious diseases such as intestinal bleeding, inflammatory bowel disease or cancer. IBS can also irritate, aggravate and inflame hemorrhoids which is a separate medical condition.

What causes IBS? No one knows for sure. There is not one identifiable organic factor. However clinical studies and research show symptoms are likely caused by various internal and external stimuli.

Those sensitive to IBS may be influenced by weakened immune system, reproductive hormones, diet, environment, mental health and lifestyle choice. Where 1 out of every 5 adults experience IBS or ~58 million Americans. The condition is more prominent in women starting as early as 20 years of age. And for all it is typically experienced under the age of 45. Women also tend to be two times more likely than men to become symptomatic via stimuli response.

Common triggers associated with IBS discomforts are thought to be mentally, environmentally and genetically stimulated. For instance, if IBS runs in a family, suspect genetics and environment may influence the same stimuli response within offspring. Whereas environment may cause stress, anxiety, depression and where poor diet, drug use and sedentary lifestyle cause similar IBS symptoms. It is then reasonable to assume like-cessation and treatment, or change in lifestyle may alleviate the condition.

Internal and external environment stimuli influence the digestive food coordination process. The intestines, rectum and colon have reactive triggers that are piped to the brain and are partly controlled by the autonomic nervous system [much like the heart and the lungs]. However the signals from the brain to the intestines are also lined with muscle that work in a rhythmic contraction and relaxation coordination to move food through the body.

City environment can trigger stress and IBS.

City environment can trigger stress and IBS.

Environmental stressors may cause intestine function for some to contract too little, or too much whereas the following discomfort conditions result. Removing too little water through the intestinal lining causes diarrhea. And when too much water is removed constipation occurs. It is when arithmetic muscle coordination incrementally increases within the large intestine so do the IBS symptoms. Either condition can cause cramping, bloating and gas felt within the stomach and accompanied to varying degree of either condition. Since we’re all wired a little bit different not all of us react the same way to stimuli sensitivity triggers.

Another common IBS trigger occurs when too many bad bacteria buildup within the intestines. Where antibiotics or probiotics may help to alleviate this problem.

For some cruise aversion prevents stress triggers that cause IBS symptoms. For others it’s just what they need to relieve them. That’s how different we’re wired. Identifying triggers is the first step to feeling better and living life to the fullest.

IBS “IS NOT” considered a disease. It can be more or less thought of as an aggravated condition triggered by lifestyle, environment or relationship stressors that interrupt the connected mind-body digestive coordination process. The most common stressors include: undiagnosed mental health disorders, relationship and employer stress, anxiety, depression and obsessive compulsive behavior, etc. Or where other behavioral habits, illness and disease and drug use stimulate and trigger IBS-like symptoms.

Common treatment for diarrhea and constipation,

Prescription for Diarrhea: Lotronex, Prevalite, Colestid or Welchol. Over-the-counter drugs: loperamide (Imodium), or Kaopectate could help.

Prescription for constipation: Zelnorm or a laxative such as milk of magnesia, etc. Over-the counter drugs: fiber supplements like Metamucil or Citrucel could help.

Be sure to ask for specifics of IBS treatment from treating physicians. And when purchasing an over-the-counter drug be sure to speak with a pharmacist to determine best product and application use. If either prescription or over-the-counter products are not used correctly, they can cause other health problems. Alternative IBS treatments includes: herbs, acupuncture, massage, meditation and hypnosis.

“IBS has no cures. You must manage what triggers the symptoms!”

Recommendations:

1 Make a medical appointment with gastroenterologist and prepare in advance. For instance, keep a journal of the foods you eat, how much of suspected food irritants, daily exercise and any drugs taken. Then be mindful of what may likely stimulate the IBS episodes, time of day and how severe the symptoms feel. E.g., on a scale of 1-10. Ten being the worst.

2 Reduce large meal intake, which can cause cramping, and diarrhea [try consuming smaller and more frequent meals], slow down when you eat. And stop chewing gum, both results in too much gas (air).

3 Check risk warnings on medicines prescribed. Ask your doctor about questionable medications.

4 Remove chocolate, caffeine, milk-dairy products [determine if lactose intolerant], bread [determine if gluten intolerant] and alcohol from diet. Try removing one at a time to see if symptoms improve. Log this information in your daily journal.

5 Remove stress, conflict and other emotional upsetting factors from environment.

6 Drink 6-8 glasses of water/day, especially for diarrhea. This seems counter intuitive, but it will make you feel better by flushing your system. And you must rehydrate when losing too much water within the body. Don’t drink carbonated drinks. It’s a no brainer to drink more water when constipated.

Choose exercise activity that helps reduce stress and anxiety while increasing fitness levels

Choose exercise activity that helps reduce stress and anxiety while increasing fitness levels

7 Try consuming low fat & higher in carbohydrate foods, such as pasta, rice and “whole grain breads & cereals, unless you have “celiac disease. This disease mimics IBS… If you are diagnosed with this, your body can’t digest gluten (wheat, rye, barley, etc.,) a blood test can rule out if you have celiac disease).

8 Increase fruits and vegetable consumption within your diet.

9 Get enough exercise and sleep.

References,

Bolen, Barbara, Dr. “What Is IBS and Do You Have It?” About.com Health. About.com, 24 Mar. 2015. Web. 19 Nov. 2015.

Cunha, John P., DO, FACOEP. “Irritable Bowel Syndrome, IBS: Symptoms and Diet Info.” MedicineNet. MedicineNet, Inc., 2015. Web. 19 Nov. 2015.

Staff. “Irritable Bowel Syndrome.” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 21 July 2014. Web. 19 Nov. 2015.

Staff. “Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)-Topic Overview.” WebMD. WebMD, LLC. 2015. Web. 19 Nov. 2015.

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2015 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





Multiple Sclerosis and Lifestyle Challenges

15 05 2011
Challenge yourself to see all that is in the world

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic autoimmune disorder and disease that affects the central nervous system.  The immune system somehow identifies and attacks the surrounding nerve cables (axons), leading to inflammation and injury of the brain and spinal cords cable systems.  This has a direct impact on the body’s ability to see, feel, move, and/or loss of muscle control, balance, strength and bodily functions.  When the nervous system experiences this type of damage internally it is much like an electrical wire that shorts to ground.  As your bodies movement is dependent on neuron-electrical paths; if they are compromised, electricity does not go/or not enough, or too much where needed.  When this occurs electrical signals can completely misfire and fire to parts of the body that further complicates and creates other health concerns.

 Symptoms include: Painful muscle spasm, facial pain, numbness, tingling, crawling or burning in any area of body, especially arms, or legs.  Or create problems for any type of movement and/or creates muscle weakness.  Incontinence can occur and/or a need to urinate frequently.  Urination can also be painful or a burning sensation.  Constipation and stool leakage also presents problems for many.  Other symptoms of MS:  Rapid eye movement, eye discomfort in general, or vision loss; decreased reasoning, solving skills, or memory lapses and poor judgment; hearing loss, dizziness, or depression.  To include difficult speech patterns, chewing or swallowing.  Also one can experience problems with erections, or vaginal lubrication. 

    Since the nervous system is our electrical wire way from the brain to the rest of our bodies functional parts; if the damaged myelin sheaths (our bodies nerves insulation) is compromised and shorts to other parts of the body the intended movement does not work according to plan.  As a matter of fact, the compromised electrical neural wire way can create many possible problems throughout the body.  After all, the electrical stimulus response is either voluntary [the brain thinks the movement], or involuntary [independent autonomic nervous system – The brain’s Central Nervous System (CNS) self regulates vital organs outside of our control].

    With MS, movement is now partially, or fully uncontrolled voltage [also called action potential] that may, or may not send electrical voltage to the intended body area.  And voltage leakage from a breach in the neural highways is known as demyelination of the neuron protective sheath.  Much like a conductive wire has a plastic coat around copper wire; neurons have a protective “myelin” sheath to keep the voltage inside the conductive neuron highway.  The myelin sheath ensures the electrical signals from the brain reach the intended body area destination.  MS symptoms worsen when the brain can no longer effectively send signals down through the spinal cord to communicate with distal neuron conductors (long neural pathways, e.g.,  to arms, legs).

To summarize:  When a person is diagnosed with MS, the cause of symptoms is due to the myelin insulation of conductive nerves from the brain to the spinal cord and subordinate neuron systems have developed scars (scleroses, plaques or lesions).  These scars occur when the body’s immune system attacks and damages the body’s protective myelin sheaths (Hence:  Demyelination). 

    To date, there is no cure for MS.  However, if the current treatment offered is followed as prescribed, functionality can be maximized and new attacks can be minimized to slow down the progression of disability(s).  It is also true some patients have very bad tolerance to conventional treatments.  When this is the case other alternative treatments are sought.

    The prognosis of MS is difficult to determine as the progression of this disease on the nervous systems can take one of several subtype courses.

Prognosis & Symptoms:  Some MS patients experience acute flare-ups in hours, or days.  This is referred to as a relapse, or attack.  Many of those that begin to experience MS symptoms include painful eye movement (optic neuritis).  And for others, symptoms may return within weeks, or even years and through time more MS complications arise.  This is called ‘relapsing remitting’.

     A good prognosis of the condition is visual loss, whereas numbness, gait disturbance and weakness are rather poor prognoses.   In other words, a poor prognosis of functional deterioration and life expectancy seems to correlate with numbness, poor gait and balance; where loss of eye sight does not.

     For a period of time during remittance and then relapse; this cycle can occur for years where the patient experiences similar superimposed relapses.  However, through time these superimposed relapse subside slowly and is indicative of a worsening MS condition.  This is called secondary chronic-progressive, or secondary progressive with/without bouts of relapsing remitting superimposed symptoms [which are known as relapsing progressive].

     During the relapsing remitting stage of initial MS disease, the statistical time duration for the need of a wheelchair is 20 years. For primary progressive conditions, a wheelchair will be needed after almost 6-7 years. Physical limitations caused by this condition are seen in about 70% of the patients.

 General MS Stat’s – Symptoms of this neurological disease comes in many forms that appear to come and go at will within the early stages (relapsing forms).  Or the progression can become accumulative over time.  The progressive MS form creates permanent neurological damage for many.  For primary progressive MS there is typically a need after diagnosis for a mobile scooter or wheel chair. 

     Two thirds of MS patients with minimal disability after 5 years will not show deterioration of condition within the following ten years.  Also one in every three patients is able to work 15-20 years before significant disabilities occur.  And 70% of all diagnosed with MS are living 25- 35 years after the diagnosis.   The average life expectancy of those diagnosed live 10-15 years less than those that never acquire the disease.

 Mortality – Ten percent of MS cases flare into chronic progression without relapses from earlier symptoms.  Less than 5% of those with severe progressive MS die within 5 years.  For most with MS, they live fairly normal lives and suffer bouts of relapsing remitting conditions that can be controlled with treatment. Up to 20% of those diagnosed with MS have a slow, to no progression of symptoms.   Although this disease does impact men, it is most prominent in young adults and women.  For most deaths regarding our youth after MS diagnosis, death appears to be from suicide.

 Treatment & Lifestyle – The statistical data provided was acquired before the introduction of immunomodulatory drugs 10 years ago. The advent of these drugs has delayed the progression for patients over several years. A lot of research, clinical study and experiments are being carried out on a continuous basis for multiple sclerosis prevention.  At present there are no clinically established laboratory research details available for present prognosis in multiple sclerosis.   However, it appears if you acquire MS the majority will live full productive quality lifestyles with varying disability challenges.

 Internet References:

http://health.yahoo.net/channel/multiple-sclerosis-ms_symptoms

http://www.mayoclinic.org/multiple-sclerosis/

http://www.buzzle.com/articles/multiple-sclerosis-prognosis.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multiple_schlerosis

Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2011 Copyright, All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing @: http://www.mirrorathlete.com,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





How to Deal with Irritable Bowel Syndrome

15 02 2008

 Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) creates much discomfort for those that experience the symptoms causing havoc within the large intestine (colon).  The symptoms include, bloating, gas, cramps in the abdomen with pain, constipation and diarrhea.  IBS presents itself to 1 out of every 5 adults and is more prominently exhibited in women starting as early as 20 years of age.  Although IBS creates a great deal of discomfort, it is not a serious health risk (does not lead to intestinal bleeding or cancer).  Common pharmaceuticals prescribed for diarrhea (Lotronex) and for constipation (Zelnorm) to include over the counter medication, which can have serious side effects.

What causes IBS?  No one knows for sure, there is not one identifiable organic factor.  Through clinical case studies and research, scientific consensus agrees the following various factors bring about IBS symptoms:  Individuals with sensitive and reactive colons, immune system, reproductive hormones, diet, stress and emotions can strongly influence the colon.  Since the colons reactive triggers are piped to the brain and are partly controlled by the autonomic nervous system, much like the heart and the lungs; the colon responds to stress (emotions and food intake stimuli) much like the heart and lungs (e.g., being freighted, fast heart beat and breathing, etc.).  The colon reacts the same way by contracting too little, or too much, by removing too little water through the intestinal lining (diarrhea), or too much water (constipation).  Both conditions cause cramping, boating and gas felt within the stomach.  IBS “IS NOT” considered a disease.  Natural Cure Recommendations Below,

 Recommendations:  IBS has no cures. You must manage what creates & triggers the symptoms!”
1    Keep a journal of the foods you eat, when you eat and how much (target IBS triggers).  See a physician, or naturopathic physician to present this information to.
2    Reduce large meal intake, which can cause cramping, and diarrhea (smaller meals and more frequent meals), slow eating down, and stop chewing gum, both results in too much gas (air). 
3    Check risks warnings on medicines prescribed. Ask your doctor about questionable medications.  Seek professional medical advisement and ask about natural cure management.
4    Remove chocolate, caffeine, milk products and alcohol from diet.   Try removing one at a time to determine if symptoms improve.  Log this information in your daily journal.
5    Remove stress, conflict and other emotional upsetting factors from your lifestyle.
6    Drink 6-8 glasses of water/day, especially for diarrhea.  Don’t drink carbonated drinks.
7    Consume low fat & higher in carbohydrates, such as pasta, rice and “whole grain breads & cereals” (unless you have “celiac disease.”  This disease mimics IBS… If you are diagnosed with this, your body can’t digest gluten (wheat, rye, barley, etc.,) a blood test can rule out if you have celiac disease).
8    Increase fruits and vegetable consumption within your diet and, or see line #9.
9    Supplement your diet with a quality absorbable min & vit’s (See our natural products).
10   Supplement your diet with an autoimmune quality product (See our natural products).
11   Supplement your diet with flora (Good intestinal bacteria) (See our natural products).
12   Supplement your diet with natural menopausal products (See our natural products).
 

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET2008 Copyright.  All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing @: http://www.mirrorathlete.com Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.