Next week brings the first mass distribution of the eagerly awaited H1N1 swine flu vaccine. There will be people lining up at clinics, hospitals, and local CVS pharmacies to get the shot or nasal spray that is supposed to protect against this latest, sometimes deadly, variation of the age-old pig flu.
Not sure I’m going to be one of them. I’m really struggling with justifying the benefits of the vaccination when balanced with the possible side effects. Although betting on the odds of experiencing adverse reactions is a sucker bet even when compared to Vegas odds, I don’t have to worry about dropping dead if I go bust on a chancy Blackjack hand.
I’m struggling even more with the decision of whether to get my toddler son vaccinated.
First, everyday we are hearing about more deaths related to the swine flu. So, it is clearly a growing threat that seems to popping up all over the country. The latest reports include a startling statistic. Apparently out of 100 pregnant women who have been diagnosed with H1N1, 28 have died! That’s over 1 out of every 4. Scary.
Swine flu vaccination circa 2009
Let’s talk about this new vaccination that would have supposedly protected those women from ever contracting the disease. But, I’m getting ahead of myself. Before we can talk about the 2009 vaccine, we really need to talk about the vaccine that was produced to protect against the last U.S.-based swine flu outbreak.
This was 1976, and a soldier …
Working as a physical therapist may be demanding but the contentment that comes with the job is gratifying. It is even more satisfying when you help old people (baby boomers) with physical limitations improve their quality of life, and if you derive pleasure out of making a difference in people’s lives, this could as well be career path to take.
Jobs, Working Conditions and Salary
The job of physical therapists involves helping people with physical injuries and illnesses reclaim a broad range of movements and control their pain. Also known as PT’s, physical therapists examine a patient and come up with a treatment plan that enables them to regain function, mobility and prevent disability. They also help patients deal with the loss of mobility before it occurs by developing fitness and wellness programs for healthier and active lifestyles. In addition, they track a patient’s progress and educate their families on how to handle him or her.
A PT will work in a variety of settings such as hospitals, outpatient clinics, fitness facilities, nursing homes and private practice settings. While the Doctor of Physical Therapy degree is the minimum entry level in this field, you choose to attain higher qualifications such as the advanced and master’s degrees. The standard of education largely determines promotion and salary. The physical therapist’s average wage is $79,860 annually or $38.39 per hour.
The Importance of Physical Therapy for Everybody
Whether you are suffering from physical disability, chronic conditions, pain, and injuries or …
Big Pharma is worried. Have you noticed that there are substantially fewer new drugs that are making it through pharmaceutical testing and being released to the consumer market? Especially in the mood treatment arena where Prozac and Valium have ruled for years.
Want to know one reason why?
Because evidently, sugar pills are as just as effective at curing us as many of comprehensively researched, painstakingly designed, and massively marketed medicinal cocktails being developed by companies like Merck and Smith-Glaxo. And it’s not that the new drugs don’t work. You don’t spend all those dollars on research and development unless you are pretty sure the drug will do what it’s supposed to do. The key to getting it to market is to ensure a minimum of overly dangerous side effects.
So the new drugs are typically effective in bestowing the medicinal benefits intended. It’s just that, during the clinical testing trials of these new drugs, the placebos are proving to work just as well at providing those same benefits.
New drug comes up for trial testing. A group of test subjects is selected. Some percentage of those subjects are given the real drug, while another group is given sugar pills that look like the real drug. Neither group knows whether they are getting the real thing or not.
Many of these tests are now showing that the group taking the placebo experiences an inordinately high number of member individuals who show the same benefits as those in the other group …
We’ve all seen the ads. Guy drinking a soda looks over and sees his buddy drinking from a colorful can with pictures of celery, tomatoes, carrots, and other brightly painted vegies on it. Guy knocks himself in the head exclaiming “Wow, I could’a had a V8!”.
V8 100% Vegetable Juice, now made by the Campbell Soup Company, still retains the same basic recipe as when it was first formulated back in 1933. Per the V8 site, the original V8 Juice (there are now more than 20 additional V8 brands) contains a healthy mix of vegetable juices extracted from tomatoes, carrots, celery, beets, parsley, lettuce, watercress and spinach.
Campbell claims that each eight ounce glass of the V8 100% Vegetable Juice equals two servings of vegetables. So, in theory, drinking 2-3 cans of V8 each day should fulfill your daily requirements for the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and healthy plant based sterols that we would get from fresh veggies eaten raw, steamed, or even juiced.
But is that true? I’ve often wondered about the processes required to prepare fruit and vegetable juices for mass storage and distribution, and the effects of these process on the nutritional value of the juice. In other words, is drinking a glass of 100% Apple Juice from a bottle as nutritious as eating 2-3 raw apples? Is drinking a glass of V8 as healthy as downing a couple of helpings of spinach and carrots?
Let’s look at how V8 (and most other fruit and vegetable juices) …
If you are already familiar with the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids and how fish oil supplements can help attain a healthy balance of these essential fatty acids, then you may want to scroll down to the ‘A Better Alternative?’ section.
It is well acknowledged in the scientific and consumer communities that taking in omega-3 fatty acids can improve your health.
Omega-3 fatty acids cannot be produced by the human body and are thus part of the “essential fatty acid” family. We can only get them from the food we eat or the supplements we take. Cold water fish, such as salmon and cod, are great sources of omega-3s.
There are three types of omega-3 fatty acids: alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). All of these act as anti-inflammatories in the body. Inflammation is a leading cause of many medical conditions including the deterioration of the cardiovascular (heart attacks, strokes, high blood pressure) and brain (depression, Alzheimer’s) systems. Inflammation is also primarily responsible for many of the effects of aging, including skin wrinkling, arthritis, and the degeneration of bone and tissue in the body.
Another member of the essential fatty acids are the omega-6s. They are far more common in the typical diet and can be found in meat, nuts, and seeds. Maintaining a healthy ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids can reduce the likelihood of suffering from a variety of medical problems including cancer, arthritis,and heart disease. However, the proper ratio between the two …