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When to Take Your Blood Pressure

Knowing when to take your blood pressure can help you predict your likelihood of suffering a heart attack. We know that having high blood pressure markedly increases your risk for heart attacks. Blood pressure is usually lowest just before you go to bed at night and when you first wake up in the morning.

Prevent Diabetes with Exercise and a Plant-Based Diet

Two new studies show that you can help to prevent diabetes by following a regular exercise program and by eating a plant-based diet that avoids foods that cause a high rise in blood sugar.

Impotence in Men with Diabetes

A study from Italy shows that more than 56 percent of diabetic men suffer from impotence, and almost all complain bitterly that it has destroyed something that is very important to them. The study also shows that most men who are impotent from diabetes are depressed. Impotence caused by diabetes can be prevented in almost all men whose bodies can still make insulin.

Statin Drugs and Muscle Pain

At last we have a reasonable explanation why statins can cause some people to suffer skeletal muscle pain and damage, but do not cause heart muscle damage.

Protecting Yourself from COVID-19

As businesses and activities are re-opening, many people have decided to relax their precautions to avoid infection with COVID-19. If you are a person who is at high risk for complications from this virus, I believe that you should continue to be on guard.

Excess Weight Raises Cancer Risk

The American Association for Cancer Research reports that being overweight is linked to 25 percent of cancers, and adding lack of exercise and eating pro-inflammatory foods raises the risk to 33 percent of newly diagnosed cancer cases in the U.S.

How can I prevent wrinkles?

Unfortunately, there may not be much you can do; a study from Denmark shows that skin wrinkling and aging are influenced heavily by genetic factors.

Triclosan Banned by the FDA

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced that it will ban triclosan and 18 other antibacterial chemicals in soaps and liquid hand or body wash products because they are ineffective and potentially harmful. The banned chemicals are also found in hand sanitizers, detergents, deodorants, antiperspirants, lotions, creams, toothpastes, dishwashing liquids, shampoos, mouth washes, shaving cream, after-shave lotions, hair conditioners, foot odor products, cleaning supplies, pesticides, kitchen utensils, toys, bedding, socks, trash bags and even baby pacifiers, but the FDA ban does not affect these products.

Aging and Risk for Dementia

Dementia means loss of brain function, and your chance of having dementia increases with age. Doctors can now predict increased risk for developing dementia by ordering an MRI which can show decreased volume of grey matter in the brain.

Warnings from Impotence

The same lifestyle factors and diseases that cause impotence also cause heart attacks. Many impotent men have no idea they are at high risk for a heart attack and cannot even name any of the six factors that put them at high risk for both impotence and heart attacks: smoking, overweight, diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and lack of exercise.

Breast Cancer and Diet

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women, and its incidence has increased by more than 20 percent worldwide since 2008. A study from Spain shows that women on a high-vegetable Mediterranean-type diet had close to one third the rate of breast cancer when compared to a control group that was only given advice to reduce fat intake.

Strengthen Bones with Weight Training

Your bones weaken progressively after age 30, and between ages 35 and 50, about 28 percent of North American men and women suffer from bone weakening called osteopenia. Just one year of lifting weights can strengthen the bones enough to help protect people from fractures.

Exercisers Have More Stable Plaques

Two recent breakthrough studies give the best explanation yet of how exercise helps to prevent heart attacks. Competitive older endurance athletes may have more plaques in their arteries than non-exercisers, but they have the type of plaques that are far less likely to break off and cause heart attacks.

Lyme Disease

Many medical authors recommend treating all Lyme disease patients with 30 days of intravenous Rocephin. However, intravenous antibiotics may offer no advantage over less expensive pills (1). For many years I have been criticized for treating my Lyme disease patients who have muscle and joint pain and fatigue with 100 mg of minocycline or...

Prostate Biopsy Not So Benign

Doctors do not need to biopsy every man with a high PSA screening blood test for prostate cancer. Most patients become infected from the procedure, 20 percent suffer severe pain, 10 percent require strong pain medicines, and 15 percent of previously potent patients report that they can't get an erection one month later.

Sweet Drinks Raise Risk for Diabetes

A just-published study shows that drinking either sugared or artificially-sweetened drinks is associated with increased risk for diabetes (Am J Clin Nutr, Jun 28, 2017). Of 64,850 post-menopausal women followed for 8.4 years, 4675 developed diabetes.

Alcohol At Any Dose Can Increase Cancer Risk

Compared to non-drinkers, people who take one or two drinks per day for one year are at increased risk for cancer, and drinking even one glass of wine a day raises the risk of cancer of the throat, esophagus, liver, colon, rectum or breast.

High Blood Sugar After Meals Predicts Heart Attacks

A review of 129 studies found that tests for a high rise in blood sugar after meals were better than tests of fasting blood sugar levels as a predictor of coronary heart disease, strokes, or death from any cause.

Plaques are Reversible

Most heart attacks are caused by lifestyle factors, not by genes, and the prevention of heart attacks depends far more on what you do now than what you did earlier in your life. It is an incredible tragedy that many physicians prescribe statin drugs to prevent heart attacks without also explaining the importance of lifestyle changes.

Bent Penis: Peyronie’s Disease

Three of 100 men suffer from Peyronie's disease, a bending of the penis during erection. The penis contains balloons that fill with blood to cause an erection. These balloons can develop a scar that prevents them from expanding normally during an erection, causing the penis to bend toward the scar.

What We Have Learned So Far from Eight Months of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Infection with COVID-19 comes primarily from breathing air in indoor spaces where people with the coronavirus have been, and the more virus you breathe in, the more likely you are to become infected.

Too Much Skin Washing?

More than one million North Americans are diagnosed each year with skin cancers. Twenty percent of people have the bacterium called Staphylococcus epidermidis living on their skin. It produces molecules that have been shown to slow or stop the development of skin cancers in mice.

Constipation

The most common complaint among older people is constipation. If you have constipation, check with your doctor who often orders thyroid tests and a barium enema to rule out a cancer or other obstruction or diabetic nerve damage. Usually these tests are normal and you need to correct your diet. Eat whole grains and stop eating foods made from white flour.

Permanent Birth Control Methods: Vasectomy or Tubal Ligation?

Will a vasectomy increase risk of prostate cancer? Whether the husband gets a vasectomy or the wife gets a tubal ligation is usually decided by who has the strongest will. Vasectomies and tubal ligations are safe surgeries, but the operation on a man is a simple cutting under the skin in an office, while the operation on a woman requires going into her belly in an operating room. Over the long haul, they both are safe and effective in preventing pregnancies.

Cancer-Causing HPV Found in 20 Percent of U.S. Adults and Teens

Human Papilloma Viruses (HPV) that cause cancers of the mouth and sexual organs are the most common sexually-transmitted diseases in the United States today, infecting 20 percent of people under age 60.

How Soluble Fiber Lowers High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure (greater than 130/90 before you go to bed at night) markedly increases risk for heart attacks, strokes, heart failure, and premature death. Almost 50 percent of North American adults have high blood pressure, and it causes more than 80,000 U.S. deaths each year. A plant-based diet can help to prevent and treat high blood pressure because it contains lots of soluble fiber.

Your Appendix is Useful After All

I had my appendix removed when I was a child because the doctor told my mother it was a useless organ that might someday burst and cause horrible problems. After generations of children had their appendices removed for no reason, researchers have found that perhaps it may have an important function.

Osteoporosis and Diet

The Women's Health Initiative showed that an inflammatory diet is associated with increased hip fracture rates in women ages 50 to 63 and an anti-inflammatory diet is associated with less bone density loss in this same group of postmenopausal women.

How Pre-Diabetes Increases Risk for Dementia

One of the definitions of pre-diabetes is a high rise in blood sugar after meals, and a recent study suggests that many cases of dementia are linked to these high rises in blood sugar. This study of 3889 adults found that people who suffer from loss of mental function and dementia have much higher levels of Advanced Glycation Endproducts (AGEs) in their skin.

Being Overweight Increases Risk for Many Cancers

Nobody knows exactly why overweight is associated with increased risk for so many types of cancer, but the most likely explanation is that storing fat in your belly means that you store excess fat in your liver. Your liver controls blood sugar levels.