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Dr. Gregory Pais, ND
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Home arrow Naturopathic News arrow Issue #81 - June 2009
Issue #81 - June 2009
Welcome to this issue of Naturopathic News, issue #81. It's my mission to help you find optimal solutions to health problems. This newsletter is one way to do that. The more educated you are about your health options the better able you will be to take control of your health. If you would like to stop receiving my newsletter please send me an email and let me know. If you have a friend or family member who you think would appreciate the information provided, send me their email address.

Here are some pages that are of particular interest:

Store : There are 246 products from Emerson listed on this page. If yours isn’t one of them please let me know and I will add it so you can order online. This is particularly convenient after hours or on the weekend. Of course, you can always order by phone from Emerson at 800-654-4432.

Newsletter : Here you will find all 81 issues of my health newsletter, "Naturopathic News”.

Optimal Health Points : This is my blog that I update every week. Check out the entry for June 5 concerning how cherry juice helps alleviate exercise pain.

Are you confused by the health claims you read on the internet or hear in the store? Do you think that you’re taking too many supplements but not the ‘right’ supplement for you? Do you never have the time to ask the important questions regarding yours or your family’s health?

Then the 2009 OPTIMAL HEALTH LECTURE SERIES is for you!

I am presenting an ongoing series of free health lectures at my Williamsport office on 3rd St., as well as other locations. The topic of these lectures is determined by the interests of you, my community of patients, families, and interested individuals. Each lecture will focus on a health issue that is important to you.

Below is a list of topics that you can pick from. If there is another subject that you’d like to have me speak on, let me know. I’ll announce the schedule each month in this newsletter and in the calendar on my website. (or you can email me after April 20). Just send me an email and let me know the health questions you want answered.

How Does Homeopathy Work?

How To Stay Healthy With The Season

Healing Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Keep Your Heart Healthy

Preventing Breast Cancer

If you’d like to organize a lecture for your work, your place of worship, or have an interested group of 5 or more, I’ll come to you. All you have to do is choose a health topic that is most important to your group and we’ll make it happen.

If you can’t make it to a scheduled lecture each will be recorded and available for later purchase.

I’m looking forward to seeing you in 2009!

RSVP for the “Natural Approaches to Multiple Sclerosis” lecture at my Williamsport office, 7:30pm Tuesday, June 30, 2009.

One area that I am involving myself in as we go into the new year, is health care reform.
You’ve probably heard a variety of ideas mentioned regarding the reform of the US Health Care system—universal coverage, single payer, etc. Most of you pay out of pocket to utilize health care you need and value. This is the time to make your voice heard. I highly encourage you to contact your congressional representative, make an appointment to speak to him or her, and express your concerns regarding health care and coverage of traditional medicine (what is euphemistically called alternative medicine). Here is one resource to find your representative’s contact information:

Single Payer
The more I read and look at the Single Payer option for health care reform, the more I’d like to see us go in that direction. Basically this would mean the insurance industry would no longer run our health care system. Everyone would be included in this system. IT would be simple, direct. This approach is the least expensive of all the health reforms currently being looked at.

One major gap in all of the health care reforms is there is no allowance for traditional medicine—nutrition, homeopathy, herbs, acupuncture, etc.

It just happened again the other day. A patient sent me a copy of the Vitamin D test she just had done. With frustrating results. The wrong test was done. After all these years, and all the information available, MDs and laboratories still order the wrong test. What a waste of money and time.

For the last 6 months I’ve been looking for a home Vitamin D test. One that would be simple, easy, and accurate to do on your own. I finally found one. ZRT Laboratory in Beaverton OR. ZRT emphasizes research and technological innovation.

Until now, venipuncture blood serum has been the standard medium for testing Vitamin D. ZRT has developed and refined Vitamin D testing in blood spots. A few drops of blood from a quick and nearly painless nick of the finger, placed on a filter paper to dry are all that is needed. The total 25 (OH) Vitamin D is then determined by liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). This method has been shown to be as accurate as the assay standard.

Ordering A Vitamin D Test
ZRT allows anyone to order a Vitamin D test kit for $95 plus shipping and have it sent to their home. ZRT will let me prepay for kits and send them to my office for $55 each. I am charging $65 per kit for patients to cover my overhead and analysis of results.

If you are interested in getting a Vitamin D test done through my office please prepay so I can order you a kit. Then you can either pick it up at my office or have it shipped to your home. Once you’ve taken the sample and sent it back to ZRT it’s only a matter of time before your results are sent back to me. I can even look at them online before the mail arrives.

If your doctor has refused to order a Vitamin D test or worse, ordered the wrong one, this is the fastest, least expensive, most accurate way to do it ourselves. Once we know what your Vitamin D levels are, the next step is making sure that you achieve optimum levels for prevention of disease and maintenance of health.

Buy Local!    Buy Fresh!    Buy Organic!
Every Saturday 9-, until
Corner of Hepburn St. and Little League Boulevard
The Farmer’s Market is happening every weekend throughout the summer. Find the best organic and local fruit, vegetables, meat, and eggs. There are even local craftspeople. Yes, Steam Valley Fiber Farm will back at the market soon. With it’s great selection of mohair, yarn, on display.

When my patients have AHA moments I think it can be illustrating to share them. The latest happened today.

I have a recent new patient who’s working with me to prevent recurrence of breast cancer. Many of you have heard me speak about my understanding of health and disease. Part of my understanding is that there is a hierarchy involved whereby symptoms are the organism’s way to get our attention. The more exterior the symptoms, the less significant overall, the more time/space we have to address the true nature of our disease before it goes deeper.

In many ways cancer is a deeper state. For one, the fear that this word engenders is monumental in its effects. Such fear can lead one to make decisions that perhaps would not be made otherwise. Daughters of moms with breast cancer who decide to have preventive (in other words no breast cancer is present) bilateral mastectomies come to mind.

It’s been recognized by many over the years—Bernie Siegel, Carl Simonton, and many of my patients—that cancer is a transformative experience. People say something along the lines of, “my cancer was the best thing that happened to me”.

This patient had the realization, when she got her diagnosis, that now it was time to live her life. Not only was it now time, the implication was that she was allowed to live her life. What she wanted. Of course, that means you actually have to do it. Figure it out. And it is that process that I would contend makes cancer the transformational trigger.

There are many ways of saying this. I love how so many of my patients have expressed it. Almost 200 years ago, Samuel Hahnemann (the founder of homeopathy) said it like this:

In the healthy condition of man, the spiritual vital force (autocracy), the dynamis that animates the material body (organism), rules with unbounded sway, and retains all the parts of the organism in admirable, harmonious, vital operation, as regards both sensations and functions, so that our indwelling, reason-gifted mind can freely employ this living, healthy instrument for the higher purposes of our existence.
Aphorism 9 Organon of Medicine

Those of you old enough to remember the television show from the mid 60’s, “Lost in Space”, recognize this call. Whenever some monster threatened the Robinson family their trusty robot would twirl around dramatically waving its arms too and fro, shouting this refrain. In the past 7-10 days we’re seeing a rerun of this kind of hysteria related to supplements. There’s a new round of news stories declaring how unsure supplements are and how much people regret using them.

This current cycle of pernicious attacks relates to the use of nutritional supplements by cancer patients. As always when it comes to cancer fear is the main tool. Patient stories are used to scare people away from thinking out of the confines of the conventional approach. Anything that challenges the status quo is quashed. Whether using infusions of baking soda as inexpensive (yet effective) chemotherapy, or pursuing established cancer clinics where traditional medicine is used.

Cancer care is big business. Never forget that. Drug company’s bottom line is to make a profit for their shareholders, not provide care for patients. Any perceived inroad on their hegemony is met with ridicule and disdain. The experts are rolled out to scare everybody back into the fold.

If we had a rational conversation about this, scientific research would be recognized and utilized, where appropriate. That way, cancer patients would be told to take Vitamin E when they get mucositis (painful mucous membranes) from radiation treatment, or to use ginger for the nausea that can happen, or to use supplements to alleviate the liver toxicity caused by chemotherapy drugs. Instead we have a monolithic establishment trying to mark its turf by putting anything else out of bounds.

Here we have another study connecting unexplained and sudden deaths of children to commonly prescribed drugs for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Children taking stimulant drugs such as Ritalin to treat ADHD are several times as likely to suffer sudden, unexplained death as children who are not taking such drugs, according to a study published June 15. Researchers did not state that there was a cause and effect, but this study is the first to rigorously demonstrate a connection between ADHD drugs and sudden death among children. About 2.5 million children in the United States take ADHD medications such as Ritalin and Adderall.

FDA officials said that the benefits of the drugs outweigh their risks. The study's lead author, Madelyn Gould, a professor in child psychiatry and epidemiology at Columbia University, said she agreed with the FDA's advice. "This study reports a significant association or 'signal' between sudden unexplained death and the use of stimulant medication, specifically methylphenidate," the study researchers concluded, referring to the chemical name of Ritalin.

Researchers obtained information about 564 children in the United States who died suddenly and inexplicably between 1985 and 1996. The researchers evaluated how many of the children who died had been taking stimulant drugs by asking their parents and caregivers and by reviewing medical documents. For every child who died suddenly and inexplicably, the researchers then found another child closely matched in terms of age, sex and other variables who died in a traffic accident. If stimulant drugs had nothing to do with sudden, unexplained death, then the number of victims on stimulant drugs who suffered such deaths and the number of victims on stimulant drugs who died in traffic accidents ought to have been about the same. But Gould found that 10 children in the group that suffered sudden, unexplained death had been taking stimulant drugs, whereas only two children in the group killed in traffic accidents were taking such medications. No matter how the data were sliced, Gould said, there were significantly more children taking stimulant drugs who suffered sudden, unexplained death than those were killed in traffic accidents.
June 15, 2009 National Institute of Mental Health

DR. PAIS’S COMMENTS: From my perspective these drugs should be the last choice, not the first. Why? Because there are treatment options that have ZERO risk of causing sudden death. Namely nutrition and homeopathy. Why use anything that has the potential to kill the patient you’re giving it to?

Removing artificial flavorings, preservatives, and colorings from the diet can have a profound effect on calming behavior. The homeopathic medicine that matches the individual’s state can focus attention, reduce restlessness, and aid concentration. Neither of these treatments causes sudden death or has the potential of causing sudden death.

Patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD), who exercised on a stationary tandem bicycle with a healthy partner during a single 40-minute session, experienced a 35% improvement in motor function and increased brain activation. These results are similar to that found with levodopa treatment (conventional drug therapy).

The study, by researchers at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, found that maintaining a steady rate of 80 to 90 revolutions per minute (rpm) on the bicycle not only improved function in lower extremities but also in upper extremities. The improvement was dramatic and similar to that achieved by levodopa therapy, said researchers from the Center for Neurological Restoration at the Lerner Research Institute, in Cleveland. "It suggests to us that maybe we're changing central motor function or maybe we're actually changing brain function through something very noninvasive."

A previous published study by this Cleveland research group found that the same exercise intervention administered 3 times a week for 8 weeks provided a similar 35% improvement in motor function.

For the study, researchers selected 11 male and female patients ranging in age from mid 50s to early 70s who had mild to moderate PD but no cardiac concerns. They tested these patients under 3 random conditions: not on medication, on medication (levodopa), and not on medication but completion of the forced-exercise intervention.

When on a stationary bicycle, PD patients normally pedal at a sustained rate of about 40 to 60 rpm. In this intervention, however, the patients sat on the back of a tandem bicycle while a healthy young adult trainer occupied the front seat and regulated the pedaling rate, ensuring that it remained between 80 to 90 rpm for 40 minutes.

Patients also performed a force-tracking task and a bilateral finger-tapping task to demonstrate their level of control and coordination. Similar grasping tasks are necessary to perform daily activities such as buttoning a shirt or tying shoe laces.

The researchers found that the forced exercise and the levodopa produced similar significant reductions in Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS III) motor scores, 35% with exercise and 38% with levodopa. The researchers surmise that the exercise may facilitate central motor control processes in Parkinson's patients.
Movement Disorder Society's 13th International Congress of Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders: Abstract LB-13. Presented June 10, 2009.

DR. PAIS’S COMMENTS: Parkinson’s Disease is one of the most difficult neurological diseases to treat. Standard drug therapy has side effects that make compliance difficult for some patients. This kind of exercise therapy is very inexpensive, has no side effects, and has other benefits in terms of increased well being, flexibility, muscle strength, etc. It’s a winner.

I am often asked what supplements I recommend. Many of you have been surprised to discover that I favor food over pills; lifestyle changes over fads. I have been working with nutrition for over 30 years, herbs for over 20 years. Where and when appropriate I recommend them to my patients. I strive to act from knowledge, experience, and research.

Emerson Ecologics (800-654-4432) carries almost all of the nutritional supplements and botanical extracts that I think are useful. Their customer service is excellent and their delivery is reliable (often only 2-3 days to this region). It’s a great way to get physician quality products at reasonable prices.

To offset the cost of shipping, reference my name when you establish your account and receive a 10% discount on every order. If you have any questions about these items feel free to email me.

That’s it for this issue of Naturopathic News. If you’ve thought a bit extra or learned something new, then I achieved my goal. As usual, if you have questions or concerns brought up by these subjects, let me know.

Gregory Pais, ND, DHANP
580 E. 3rd. St.
Williamsport  PA  17701
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