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Jan 14, 2013

Alternative Medicine Use High Among Pediatric Patients

Article Date: 14 Jan 2013 – 11:00 PST

Medical News Today

A rising number of children in Canada with chronic illnesses are trying alternative medicines or therapies, but aren’t necessarily informing their doctors they are doing so.

In the treatment of chronic illnesses, it is not uncommon for people to use other remedies including herbal, homeopathic, or vitamins that have the potential to interact adversely with doctor-recommended treatment.

A study, conducted by the Universities of Ottawa and Alberta in Canada, examined the alternative treatment methods of 926 families at 10 separate clinics in Edmonton and Ottawa.

Parents of kids were asked to complete surveys in the waiting room before entering for their child’s appointment. The children being treated at these clinics were being seen for health conditions in one of the following areas: cardiology, neurology, oncology, gastroenterology, or respiratory health.

Researchers found that nearly 71 percent of the pediatric patients used alternative medicine at the Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton, and 42 percent at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario in Ottawa.

Nearly 20 percent of the families surveyed admitted they had not informed their physician or pharmacist about using alternative and prescription medications together.

Sunita Vohra, a researcher with the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry at the University of Alberta, and lead investigator on the study said:

Right now, these families are getting information about alternative medicine from friends, family and the Internet, but a key place they should be getting this information from is their doctor or another member of their health-care team, who would know about possible drug interactions with prescription medicines.”

The most common alternative medicines reported were:

  • multivitamins
  • minerals
  • homeopathic remedies
  • herbs

While the most frequently used alternative therapies were:

  • relaxation
  • aromatherapy
  • chiropractic
  • massage

Nearly half of the children used forms of alternative medicine simultaneously with conventional medicine, and 5 percent said they used alternative medicine instead of traditional medicine.

Parents were almost three times as likely to use alternative medicine if the kid’s health seemed poor and if the parent had previously used that form of treatment themselves.

Simultaneous use of conventional medicine and alternative medicine can be dangerous. The study results showed that 80 cases occurred of interactions between traditional medicine and alternative medicine, 19 that were adverse, and six considered severe.

Full Article

Junk Food Linked to Kids’ Asthma and Eczema

Hayley Dixon
Telegraph.co.uk
January 14, 2013

The high saturated fat levels in food such as burgers lower children’s immune systems, it is believed.

A research project involving more than 50 countries found that teenagers who ate junk food three times a week or more were 39 per cent more likely to get severe asthma. Younger children were 27 per cent more at risk.

Both were also more prone to the eye condition rhinoconjunctivitis, according to The Sun newspaper

But just three weekly portions of fruit and vegetables could cut that risk by 14 per cent in the younger group and 11 per cent among the teens, it is believed.

Read full article

BPA exposure predisposes children to kidney damage, heart disease

Monday, January 14, 2013 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer

BPA(NaturalNews) Childhood exposure to the chemical bisphenol A (BPA) is associated with changes in the body that predispose people to heart and kidney disease later in life, according to a study conducted by researchers from New York University and published in the journal Kidney International.

The findings follow a study by the same research team, published in September in the Journal of the American Medical Association, which showed that children and adolescents with higher levels of BPA in their urine were significantly more likely to be obese.

“While our cross-sectional study cannot definitively confirm that BPA contributes to heart disease or kidney dysfunction in children, together with our previous study of BPA and obesity, this new data adds to already existing concerns about BPA as a contributor to cardiovascular risk in children and adolescents,” co-lead author Leonardo Trasande said.

“It further supports the call to limit exposure of BPA in this country, especially in children.”

BPA, a chemical widely used in plastics, in the linings of food and beverage cans, and in a wide variety of other applications from compact discs to the thermal paper used for receipts, has been implicated as an endocrine disruptor linked with changes to the human metabolic, nervous and reproductive systems. Its use in baby bottles and sippy cups has been banned in Canada and the European Union, which has caused it to be largely phased out of those products in the Western world.

Yet exposure to the chemical is still widespread, and 92 percent of U.S. children already have traces of BPA in their urine by age six.

“Removing it from aluminum cans is probably one of the best ways we can limit exposure,” Trasande said. “There are alternatives that manufacturers can use to line aluminum cans.”

Protein in the urine

The researchers analyzed data on 710 US residents between the ages of six and 19 who had participated in the 2009-2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). The researchers compared the BPA levels in urine with those of a protein called albumin.

In healthy people, the kidney’s glomerular membrane prevents protein molecules from entering the urine. When this membrane is damaged, however, albumin may enter the urine.

Even after controlling for other risk factors including age, gender, weight, race and ethnicity, caregiver education, poverty to income ratio, high blood pressure, insulin resistance, high cholesterol and exposure to tobacco smoke, the researchers found that higher levels of BPA were significantly associated with a higher albumin to creatinine ratio – an early marker associated with an elevated risk of kidney damage and heart disease. Notably, the BPA levels observed in the study were actually relatively low.

Trasande noted that while the study excluded children who already had kidney disease, it is likely that such children would be even more vulnerable to the effects of BPA.

“Because their kidneys are already working harder to compensate and have limited functional reserve, they may be more susceptible to the adverse effects of environmental toxins,” he said.

(Natural News Science)

Sources for this article include:http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2013-01/nlmc-blt010413.php

Health-care law requires additional dental benefits for children

By Michelle Andrews, Monday, January 14, 1:38 PM

Washington Post

Tooth decay is the most common chronic health problem in children. By the time they enter kindergarten, more than a quarter of kids have decay in their baby teeth.The problem worsens with age, and nearly 68 percent of people age 16 to 19 have decay in their permanent teeth, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Starting in 2014, the Affordable Care Act requires that individual and small-group health plans sold both on the state-based health insurance exchanges and outside them on the private market cover pediatric dental services. However, plans that have grandfathered status under the law are not required to offer this coverage.

The requirement also doesn’t apply to health plans offered by large companies, although they are much more likely to offer dental benefits than small firms. Eighty-nine percent of firms with 200 or more workers offered dental benefits in 2012, compared with 53 percent of smaller firms, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation’s annual survey of employer health plans. (Kaiser Health News is an independent project of KFF.)

The changes in the health law apply specifically to children who get coverage through private plans. Dental services are already part of the benefit package for children covered by Medicaid, the state-federal health program for low-income people. But many eligible kids aren’t enrolled, and even if they are, their parents often run into hurdles finding dentists who speak their language and are willing to accept Medicaid payments.

The health law encourages states to expand Medicaid coverage for adults, which advocates say will have the added benefit of probably bringing more children into the system.

Despite the challenges, advocates say they anticipate that many low-income children will gain dental coverage.

Dental health advocates say they’re pleased that pediatric dental services (along with other pediatric care) were included among the 10 “essential health benefits” that new health plans must cover in the exchanges and the small-group and individual markets under the law.

When it comes to health care, “oftentimes the mouth is separated from the body,” says David Jordan, dental access project director at Community Catalyst, a consumer health-care advocacy organization in Boston.

Experts say that poor oral health care can have a significant impact on overall health, causing pain and weight loss, missed school days and reduced self-esteem.

Full Article

Coca-Cola to air U.S. commercials addressing obesity

A Coca-Cola logo on a truck at a distribution center in Alexandria, Virginia October 16, 2012. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:09pm EST

(Reuters) – Coca-Cola Co will air a two-minute commercial on U.S. cable television on Monday that highlights its efforts in fighting obesity, as the soft drink industry faces increasing pressure from local governments and critics.

The commercial mentions how Coca-Cola sells about 180 low- and no-calorie drinks, works to produce better-tasting low-calorie sweeteners and has introduced smaller can sizes.

It also reminds viewers that “all calories count no matter where they come from” and that “if you eat and drink more calories than you burn off, you’ll gain weight.”

This is not the first time Coca-Cola has used advertising to address this issue, but it is a first for television. The move comes as New York City prepares for an upcoming ban on the sale of sugary drinks larger than 16 ounces (0.5 liter) in places like restaurants, movie theaters and stadiums. In November, voters in two California cities rejected ballot measures for soda taxes.

The commercial will air on Monday on CNN’s “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer,” FOX News’ “The O’Reilly Factor,” and MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show.” It will air on Tuesday during other shows as well.

“The audience for this new ad … is knowledgeable about the problem but doesn’t necessarily know about what the Coca-Cola Co is doing to address it,” said Coke spokeswoman Diana Garza Ciarlante. “We are telling them our story.”

Another commercial, which talks about Coke’s front-of-package calorie labels, will debut on Wednesday during the popular “American Idol” television show on Fox, which has partnered with Coke, the world’s largest soft drink maker, for some time.

Ciarlante said the commercials were not in response to any increased pressure but Michael Jacobson, executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest and an outspoken critic of the industry, said the move seems like “a full-blown exercise in damage control.”

“They’re trying to pretend they’re part of the solution instead of part of the problem,” Jacobson said. If Coke was serious about wanting to be part of the solution, Jacobson said, it could stop advertising full-calorie drinks altogether, set up a pricing scheme where full-calorie drinks were more expensive, or stop opposing proposed soda taxes.

In response Coca-Cola’s Stuart Kronauge, general manager of sparkling beverages for North America, said the obesity problem can only be solved with “honest and collective action.”

“This includes action by business, government, teachers, scientists, health professionals, parents, and of course companies like the Coca-Cola Co,” Kronauge said in a statement. “We have an important role in this fight which can only be won if everyone works together.”

Coca-Cola, which is also a big sponsor of the Olympics and other sporting events, spent about $610 million on advertising in 2011, according to Brad Adgate at Horizon Media Inc, citing figures from Advertising Age.

American Idol is one of the costliest TV shows for advertisers, according to the latest annual survey by Advertising Age. The survey, released in October, found that the average cost of a 30-second spot on Wednesday’s edition of the show was $340,825.

(Reporting By Martinne Geller in New York; Editing by Steve Orlofsky and Marguerita Choy)

Stealth Codex Alimentarius Regulations Postponed in US … For Now

Brandon Turbeville
Activist Post

The recently shelved New Dietary Ingredient (NDI) draft guidelines proposed by the FDA has been the subject of much concern by natural health supplement manufacturers and consumers ever since the announcement was made by the agency in early 2011.
The guidelines, which were published in the Federal Register, would have clarified some definitions of terms, changed requirements for “new” supplement introduction and manufacture, and a host of other more minor, but important, tweaks in previous FDA policy.
However, the most concerning aspect of the proposed changes is that many are actually the stealthy introduction of Codex Alimentarius-compliant regulations being imposed upon the United States health supplement industry. Specifically, these guidelines would not only have made it harder and more expensive for vitamin and mineral supplement manufacturers to introduce “new” supplements into the market, but it would also have resulted in the removal of many supplements from the market as it currently exists.
Most notably, the proposed FDA guidelines mandated the use of Risk Assessment methodology to determine and establish what could be easily described as the Maximum Upper Limit or Maximum Permitted Level of nutrients allowed in vitamin and mineral supplements – a hallmark of the Codex Alimentarius position in relation to these products.
If one is unfamiliar with Codex Alimentarius and the ramifications that the standards of this international organization will have on vitamin and mineral supplements in the United States (and every other nation), I encourage you to read my book, Codex Alimentarius – The End of Health Freedom, which is a comprehensive study of Codex Alimentarius and the fallout of adherence to the standards it sets.

 

In this context, it is extremely important to understand the deleterious effects of using Risk Assessment methodology in evaluating food supplements as well as establishing Maximum Upper Limits/Maximum Permitted Levels of nutrition in these products. Essentially, Codex Alimentarius derives its standards (which are set extremely low) by classifying nutrients as toxins even while classifying actual toxins such as fluoride as nutrients.
It is also important to understand that it is the goal of every nation that is part of the World Trade Organization (WTO) to become Codex-compliant for trade dispute purposes. Thus, it is easy to see why regulatory agencies such as the FDA, USDA, and EPA (which openly desires to become Codex compliant) introduce Codex guidelines through stealth and under the appearance of their own independent regulatory standards and volition. As I wrote in my article, “The Language of Health Tyranny: Decoding the Codex Alimentarius Guidelines For Vitamins and Supplements,”

Risk assessment, while seemingly benign, is actually crucial to the ability of Codex to justify the ban of vitamin and mineral supplements. This concept works on the assumption that the item being tested is inherently dangerous and toxic. This method is completely the opposite of what should be used when evaluating vitamins and minerals. As Dr. Rima Laibow states in her article “‘Nutraceuticide’ and Codex Alimentarius:”

This use of risk assessment, of course, represents a major deflection from the real use and value of risk assessment, which is to make sure that people are not exposed to the dangerous industrial chemicals that have serious and sometimes lethal effects on them and their children.[1]

By applying “scientific risk assessment” to nutrients and supplements, they are essentially considering them toxins as they are lumped into the same category as chemicals and poisons. There is no need to explicitly state that “nutrients are toxins.” This is done by default. So, in the end, we have the categorization of vitamins and minerals that are essential to human health and life as something that is actually toxic. In this sense, we are entering the world of doublethink.

Regardless, this is the position of Codex, as well as the position of the U.S. Delegation throughout the discussion [Codex Committee on Nutrition and Foods For Special Dietary Uses].[2] Indeed, even many alleged “health freedom” International Non-Governmental Organizations were either gullible enough to be taken in by the promise of the benefits of risk assessment, or morally bankrupt enough to be bought off by the pharmaceutical industry or others who might benefit from the demise of the natural supplement industry. Yet, some of the support for risk assessment methods early on seems to have been based on the fear of the implementation of maximum limits proposed by European countries like France. These limits would have reduced the potency level of each pill to no more than 15% Recommended Daily Intake (RDI), a figure that is already set much too low.[3] Yet those who favored risk assessment seemed to jump from the frying pan into the fire. As Scott Tips of the Natural Health Federation writes:

The so-called ‘science-based risk assessment’ for establishing Safe Upper Limits (maximum levels) for vitamin-and-mineral potencies, to which the EU has agreed, and about which the Americans are as happy as flies on cow dung, is nothing but a trap. The Americans think that they will be able to get real science to establish high maximum levels for their vitamins and minerals and then sell them to European consumers by the bushels. But by the time the Europeans get through applying their science, those maximum limits will be so low toddlers would be lucky to get any nutritional value out of Codex-harmonized vitamins and minerals. The European Union’s Scientific Committee on Food has already started using its science-based risk assessment to establish laughably low maximum limits for European vitamins. And, lately, I have begun to see a growing concern, if not outright fear, in the faces of some science-based risk-assessment proponents that perhaps things might not go their way here after all.[4]

With this in mind, the FDA’s NDI draft guidance document would have required the supplement manufacturer to include an NDI notification for the “new ingredient.” Among the requirements of the notification is the establishment of a “No-Observed-Adverse-Effect Level” (NOAEL) as well as the Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) for the ingredient. While the ADIs present their own controversy (always being set too low), the NOAEL is, in fact, simply another name for Maximum Upper Limits/Upper Safe Levels – a level which affects the actual production and consumption of the supplement as opposed to the instructional element.
These levels, while seemingly benign or even positive constructions, are far from helpful when applied to nutritional supplements. To give an idea of how these Risk Assessment numbers are improperly applied and then ratcheted down until the supplements are rendered virtually useless, Rima Laibow describes[5] the Risk Assessment methodology as follows:
First a group of test animals, mice, rats, rabbits, et cetera, are increasing amounts of the toxin of interest. The dose in increased until half of the animals are dead. The dose at which 50 percent of the test animals die is called the Lethal Dose 50 (LD50). A similar dose is extrapolated for humans.
Next, the other end of the dose spectrum is investigated by giving test animals smaller and smaller doses until no impact can be identified from the dose of the toxin to establish the Maximum Upper Limit (MUL). The MUL is divided by a safety factor, typically 100. The dosage that results is called the Maximum Permissible Upper Limit.[6]
When the “toxin” is actually a nutrient, setting the MUL at a point where there is no impact is defeated the purpose of consuming the nutrient in the first place, as well as the precursor to significantly raising the costs and practicality of obtaining proper nutrition.
Thus, the FDA’s draft NDI guidelines as previously submitted were infested with Codex Alimentarius-based guidelines of Risk Assessment and Maximum Upper Limits/Upper Safe Levels designed to reduce access and availability of nutritional supplements both from the shelves and the factory.
Of course, these specific guidelines were not the only way in which the FDA had attempted to impede the development and production of nutritional supplements. The NDI guidelines also attempted to make NDI submission supplement-specific as opposed to ingredient-specific. This means that the agency would have required a new NDI notification for each specific supplement, formula, or blend in which the NDI is used, instead of simply the NDI itself. That is, unless the manufacturer is able to meet some rather strict criteria which, among other things, conveniently reduce the amount of the NDI in the supplement.
Certain types of probiotics would also have been restricted given the FDA’s attempt to exclude the designation of the bacteria supplement as being a dietary ingredient – thus potentially removing certain amounts of probiotics from the market.
Thankfully, for the time being, the FDA’s guidelines have been postponed after significant public outcry and a meeting with a handful of senators and representatives in the U.S. Congress. However, the guidelines will be revisited in the future and one can only guess as to what they may include when the updated versions are released to the public.

 

Keeping history in perspective, it is an unfortunate reality that government revisions often make the original bill seem better in retrospect. This is because they can count on the second round of opposition to only be half the size of the first. Thus, after a bit of rewriting and rewording, the new version of the bill or policy often includes elements which were even worse than the first version due to the fractured resistance it will now encounter.
While reporting on guidelines that have been shelved may, at first, seem like a waste of time, it is important to point out just how the FDA, along with its regulatory kin, are determined to harmonize their own standards with that of Codex Alimentarius to the detriment of the consumer and the American people they have been tasked with protecting.
We must be able to recognize these dangers immediately and identify the sources of such changes to regulatory policy in order to mount an effective resistance.

References:


[1] Laibow, Rima. “’Nutraceuticide’ and Codex Alimentarius.” Alternative and Complementary Therapies, October 2005. P. 227.
[2] Tips, Scott C. “Breathe Easier – Codex Adjourns.” Codex Alimentarius: Global Food Imperialism. Ed. Scott C. Tips. FHR. 2007. P. 33.
[3] Ibid.
[4] Tips, Scott C. “A Meeting Of Two.” Codex Alimentarius: Global Food Imperialsim. Ed. Scott C. Tips. FHR. 2007. P. 101.
[5] Turbeville, Brandon. Codex Alimentarius – The End of Health Freedom. False Flag Publications. 2010. http://www.thebookpatch.com/BookStoreDetails.aspx?BookID=829&ID=e78aa577-49b0-493b-aa44-c84db9d0c8cf

[6] Laibow, Rima. “Nutraceuticide’ and Codex Alimentarius

Read other articles by Brandon Turbeville here.

Brandon Turbeville is an author out of Florence, South Carolina. He has a Bachelor’s Degree from Francis Marion University and is the author of three books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies, and Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident. Turbeville has published over 190 articles dealing on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s podcast Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.

 

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