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Grab the Green Box!


For years, if you were trying to cut back on the calories you got from your sweetener, you had three choices; you could pick the pink box, the blue box or the yellow box.  Although they are lower in calories than plain old sugar, there have been serious questions raised concerning their safety for use in humans.  Well, there is a better alternative that will not add unwanted calories to your diet and is very safe and natural, and tastes great too.

Say hello to Stevia!  This little plant has been providing Japan with a completely natural, low-calorie sweetener for decades, while we have had to settle for the artificial chemical compounds in the yellow, blue and pink boxes sold to us by the Multi-National Corporations.  Stevia is a very easy to grow plant (I've grown it in our garden for 3 years now) that contains a natural substance that is much sweeter than cane sugar.  When you pop one of the leaves fresh off the plant into your mouth you will be surprised that one little leaf can be so incredibly sweet.  I dry mine at the end of the season and grind it up with a mortar and pestle to use in coffee and over cereal. 

Bridget and the kids don't like the looks my Stevia (light brown in color) so they buy it in the Green box.  Our local brand is Truvia and tastes just as good as home-grown, but is a more kid-pleasing shade of white.  To my knowledge there is nothing artificial or genetically-modified about Stevia and I whole-heartedly recommend it for you and your family.  You can buy your own seeds right here.  You can use the leaves for cooking, and even collect the seeds to plant next year so you will never have to buy the Pink/Blue/Yellow box ever again.

There are several Stevia cookbooks with great-tasting recipes that will really cut down on on your Carb and Sugar intake.  I have this Cookbook.

You can read the story of Stevia and its use around the world, and about the fact it was ILLEGAL in the U.S. for a number of years.  The FDA actually spoke out against this safe and natural plant for years, can you guess why?  Read the Book and find out why it was against the law to grow or sell Stevia in the United States while many other countries were enjoying the health benefits...

Make Your Cholesterol Medicine Safer

 Many of my patients have self-induced High Cholesterol, and a few of them have genetically High Cholesterol, through no fault of their own.  Sometimes it is easy for those who have high cholesterol to lose sight of the proper treatment.  Commercials for Drugs and Breakfast Cereals pretend they are the only answer, but the truth is, for most people, they are not even close to number one on the list of good answers.

First of all, let us do away with the theory that faithfully eating a breakfast cereal can somehow cure your High Cholesterol.  This is a myth created and sustained by the Multi-National-Corporations who MAKE MONEY from the production and marketing of Breakfast Cereal.  Adding a breakfast cereal to your diet to lower cholesterol, for the amount of good it actually does, is actually much more expensive than Name-Brand cholesterol meds.  You have to eat lots (several bowls) of cereal to lower your total number even a few points.  They are making lots of money and you are adding lots of empty calories to your existing diet, for the little good it is actually doing.

The Heart Revolution: The Extraordinary Discovery That Finally Laid the Cholesterol Myth to RestSecond, I believe there is a place for prescription meds in the treatment of High Cholesterol, but their use should be rare, and only in patients who are doing everything else properly.  Any pill you put in your mouth can have possible side effects.  In order for taking a daily medicine to make sense, the possibility of gaining a benefit from the pill should far out-weigh the possible side effects, and the patient (You) should be actively trying to treat their condition by improving their diet and lifestyle all the while.

A few years back there must have been a news release about Statin drugs "killing your liver" because that is the most common patient fear I hear about them.  Since I have been prescribing Statins for High Cholesterol (2001) I have seen exactly ZERO cases of a statin hurting a patient's liver.  I agree it is theoretically possible, and that you should have lab-work checked to monitor your liver, but it is a very, very rare occurrence. 

The most common side effects of Statins I actually do see is muscle fatigue, muscle ache and muscle soreness.  I have heard this hundreds of times from my patients.  Initially, due to my medical school indoctrination, I doubted my patients, believing instead that they were just being hyper-aware and looking for side effects.  Through the years my patients have taught me this is a real, and common side effect.

The No-Grain DietI also believe there is a sub-set of patients with High Cholesterol, taking Statin drugs who have subtle fatigue and are just not aware of it.  Several times I have been told by a patient, "I didn't even know I was having any fatigue until I added CoQ-10, but now I can feel the difference!"  I have been looking for the answer to this problem and listening to my Patients, and I think I have found the solution to Statin-induced muscle problems.

Statin drugs, although necessary in some, cause the bodies biochemisty to inhibit Ubiquinol, also known as Co-enzyme Q10, or CoQ-10.  This can lead to muscle weakness and aching, and ironically, perhaps even increased risk of Heart disease.  So if you must take a Statin, you should absolutely take either CoEnzyme-Q10, or Ubiquinol daily to help maximize your Statins protection of your heart, prevent the very rare liver complications, and to erase the very common muscle aching, weakness or fatigue you may be suffering from.  You can click on the words to see the products I trust for my patients and my family members...

By adding Coenzyme-Q10 or Ubiquinol to your diet and following the guidelines below, you will probably be able to lower the dosage or even stop the Statin drug you are currently having to take.

So, let's list the TREATMENTS for High Cholesterol in their order of Importance:

  1. Daily exercise - Walking a mile/day should be considered a Daily Medicine by everyone over 40.  This change alone, if followed by every American, would improve the current Health Care Mess by preventing thousands of heart attacks and strokes yearly, and keeping thousands of patients off Statin Drugs.  Exercise is not a cop-out or a sweet-little-nothing your Doctor whispers into your ear, it is a required daily treatment for hundreds of medical conditions that You WILL suffer from if you neglect to take this daily medicine.  If you have High Cholesterol and you are not walking a mile-a-day, you need to have a long look in the mirror; you are pulling the wool over your own eyes if you think Lipitor will replace the walking.  Daily Exericise is FREE.
  2. Diet improvement - Decreasing pork consumption is vital to your heart and brain health.  I tell patients who have High Cholesterol to treat any Pork like Birthday Cake, only an occasional treat.  Forget the ads you might have seen on TV (paid for by Pork Producers!), there's no white meat on a pig, it's ALL Hog!  Also decreasing the amount of processed junk food you eat will decrease your Cholesterol levels.  Anytime you have to take what you are about to eat out of plastic-wrap, or a cardboard box, or you have to speak into a microphone before you get your food, you should stop and ask yourself, "Is this really food?"  Chances are, it probably isn't.  Diet Improvement is FREE.
  3. CoEnzyme Q-10 and Ubiquinol - Very natural ways to decrease you cholesterol, protect your liver, maximize your energy and improve your chances of keeping a healthy heart.  Their actions in the body are backed up by real medical science, not just educated opinion.  There are virtually no side-effects from using these natural products and they are fairly inexpensive.  CoEnzyme Q-10 or Ubiquinol should cost around $20/month.
  4. Statin Drugs - Generic versions of Zocor, Mevacor and Pravachol, along with Lipitor, Crestor and Livalo.  These may be necessary, but only after you have tried numbers 1 thru 3 above for at least 3 to 6 months to fix your High Cholesterol naturally and inexpensively.  While these drugs are necessary in about one percent of patients with high cholesterol, they can have side effects.  Statins should cost from $5-200/month. Almost no-one should be paying over $10/month for a Statin drug.  If you are, you should see your doctor and ask why.  The evidence in studies showing Lipitor to be better than generic Zocor is weak at best...
  5. Zetia and Vytorin - A complete waste of money!  Zetia has been shown in a very large study to do almost nothing to lower your High Cholesterol.  Some patients take it since it is not a Statin hoping to avoid the bad side effects.  There are much cheaper and better ways to treat your High Cholesterol, you should talk to your Doctor.
  6. Other Cholesterol Meds - Can have some use in lowering your High Cholesterol, but there are very specific reasons for using them.  If you are not clear on why you are taking one, you should talk to your Doctor.
The Primal Blueprint: Reprogram your genes for effortless weight loss, vibrant health, and boundless energyPlease dont get "hung-up" on numbers 3 thru 6 until you have absolutely maximized numbers 1 and 2 for a few months!   There is a reason they are listed number 1 and 2; they are the BEST treatment for High Cholesterol, and they FREE.

Help Keep Grandmother From Dying of Heart Failure

A recent rehashing of six years worth of research from the famous NHANES III Study has found that Adults with Vitamin D deficiency are 3.4 times more likely to die from heart failure, compared with those who had normal levels of Vitamin D.  They were also 1.45 times as likely to die prematurely, compared with those who had normal levels of Vitamin D.  This was not some quick little study, it followed over 13,000 men and women over the age of 35 for over 6 years.  This is the kind of study that every doctor and patient should know about, and act on.

This is huge news you can use to protect your loved ones.  You should encourage any relative you care about, who is over 35 years old, to have their Vitamin D-25 tested, and to take a Vitamin D supplement if their level is low.  You can buy the Vitamin D that Ms. Bridget and I take here.  This one simple addition to your loved one's regimen could make a huge difference in their health.

Modern Medicine can do certain things to protect and prolong human life; everything else must be done by the patient and by their family members.  It should be refreshing to realize that we are still able to affect many aspects of our own health with simple and natural things.

You Give Your Child a Six-Pack of Coke Every Day?

Hello parents, here is a little info about soft drinks, junk food and your child.  I want you to be aware of both what your small child consumes, and also how much they consume.

A recent study in the journal Diabetes Care has shown that even one soft drink per day can increase your risk of developing diabetes.  This study looked at several other studies about ADULTS, and compiled the results.  Now that sounds bad, but I'm of the opinion that it is even worse for your child, and here's why.

Chew On This: Everything You Don't Want to Know About Fast FoodThe average 2 year old girl weighs almost 30 pounds.  The average woman weighs around 150 pounds.  The study above, when studying adults, found that one sugar-sweetened drink daily increased their risk of Diabetes.  Don't ever forget that, as a parent, you also need to always do some math.  If your 2 year old daughter drinks a can of Coke, that is the same, pound-for-pound, as her mom drinking 5 cans of Coke, due to the weight difference!  I regret to say there are probably many young children in our community who drink 2-3 cans of regular soda every day; that's the same as their mom drinking 10-15 cans of Coke every day.

So the obvious conclusion we must reach is that if one can of sugar-sweetened drink per day can increase the risk of Diabetes in adults, then 1-2 cans daily (equivalent to 5-10 cans) must cause the risk in small children to sky-rocket.  This is a big deal, and every parent should be aware of this study, and also aware of the need to consider the difference in weight when giving their small child sugar-sweetened drinks or snacks.  Although this study looked at drinks, don't you think the concept would apply to any sugary junk food?  Here is another great book, and a disturbing video.

Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American MealAnother Math Problem: If that same little girl ate 3 cookies, that is the same as the mom eating how many cookies?  We are suffering from an epidemic of both obesity and diabetes in young people and pretending we don't know why...

You are not being a bad parent by strictly limiting junk food, you are doing a wonderful thing for your child.  Preventing Obesity and Diabetes in children is what every parent should be about.