4. Infection from drug-resistant bacteria
For the last 70 years, we’ve been using antibiotics to treat infectious diseases, and they have saved many lives. But in a shining example of “too much of a good thing,” we’ve used them so widely and for so long that the infectious organisms they are designed to subdue have started fighting back. Bacteria have adapted and are getting stronger than ever, rendering many antibiotics ineffective. Because of this, every year in the United States at least 2 million people become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics. And shockingly, at least 23,000 people die each year as a direct result of these infections, according to the CDC. One of the most virulent of the drug-resistant bacteria is called methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The CDC estimates that there are 80,000 MRSA cases every year, causing 11,000 deaths annually.
There is some recent good news: A raft of new, peer-reviewed studies reveals that simple changes in diet can dramatically help manage ADHD and ADD. A raft of new, peer-reviewed studies reveals that simple changes in diet can dramatically help manage ADHD and ADD. For a significant set of children, eliminating culprits like artificial food coloring and preservatives, wheat, milk products, and chocolate can vastly relieve symptoms. Still other kids are helped by nutritional supplements targeting certain minerals and vitamins. The upshot? While there’s no nutritional magic bullet for all children, tweaking your child’s diet to rule out food problems, one by one, just might yield enough improvement that you can toss one or more medications.
"7 Signs You May Be Vitamin D Deficient
The only way to know for sure if you’re vitamin D deficient is via blood testing. However, there are some signs and symptoms to be aware of as well. If any of the following apply to you, you should get your vitamin D levels tested sooner rather than later.
1. You Have Darker Skin
African Americans are at greater risk of vitamin D deficiency, because if you have dark skin, you may need as much as 10 times more sun exposure to produce the same amount of vitamin D as a person with pale skin!
As Dr. Holick explained, your skin pigment acts as a natural sunscreen, so the more pigment you have, the more time you’ll need to spend in the sun to make adequate amounts of vitamin D.
2. You Feel “Blue”
Serotonin, the brain hormone associated with mood elevation, rises with exposure to bright light and falls with decreased sun exposure. In 2006, scientists evaluated the effects of vitamin D on the mental health of 80 elderly patients and found those with the lowest levels of vitamin D were 11 times more prone to be depressed than those who received healthy doses.3
3. You’re 50 or Older
As mentioned, as you get older your skin doesn’t make as much vitamin D in response to sun exposure. At the same time, your kidneys become less efficient at converting vitamin D into the form used by your body and older adults tend to spend more time indoors (i.e. getting even less sun exposure and therefore vitamin D).
4. You’re Overweight or Obese (or Have a Higher Muscle Mass)
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble, hormone-like vitamin, which means body fat acts as a “sink” by collecting it. If you’re overweight or obese, you’re therefore likely going to need more vitamin D than a slimmer person — and the same holds true for people with higher body weights due to muscle mass.
5. Your Bones Ache
According to Dr. Holick, many who see their doctor for aches and pains, especially in combination with fatigue, end up being misdiagnosed as having fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome.
“Many of these symptoms are classic signs of vitamin D deficiency osteomalacia, which is different from the vitamin D deficiency that causes osteoporosis in adults,” he says. “What’s happening is that the vitamin D deficiency causes a defect in putting calcium into the collagen matrix into your skeleton. As a result, you have throbbing, aching bone pain.”
6. Head Sweating
According to Dr. Holick, one of the first, classic signs of vitamin D deficiency is a sweaty head. In fact, physicians used to ask new mothers about head sweating in their newborns for this very reason. Excessive sweating in newborns due to neuromuscular irritability is still described as a common, early symptom of vitamin D deficiency.4
7. You Have Gut Trouble
Remember, vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, which means if you have a gastrointestinal condition that affects your ability to absorb fat, you may have lower absorption of fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin D as well. This includes gut conditions like Crohn’s, celiac and non-celiac gluten sensitivity, and inflammatory bowel disease.”
As stated by Dr. Saul, in order to get and stay healthy, we need to get back to basics. It’s not very complicated when it really comes down to it, but if you listen to the pharmaceutical industry and the medical profession, they all seem to make their living complicating things. “We have been taught that the simple is not scientific. It’s not effective. It’s really not a viable alternative,” Dr. Saul says, “Yes, it is! The simple solution is usually the best one. When we’re looking at our health, it’s just amazing how many people ask me, ‘What vitamin should I take?’ They are eating a lousy diet, are overweight, don’t exercise, and they eat a lot of junk. Now, it’s good if they take the vitamins, but you still have to eat right. That means it’s got to come out of the dirt. It’s got to be good dirt, good seed, and you need a good quantity of it. We need to get back to the land. It sounds kind of hippie-like, but the fact is, truth is truth. It’s always been a good idea to follow nature. We’re way off that. We need to turn around, look at the animal kingdom, and take the knowledge that we see in healthy animals. What can we do to improve our life? It’s very simple… ‘No junk.’” If you’re looking for an entertaining book to get you juicing, whether you’re ready to try it out for the first time, or want to pick the habit back up, I highly recommend Dr. Saul’s book, Vegetable Juicing for Everyone, which he co-wrote with his daughter Helen Saul Case.
Picture this scenario: An adult plagued with chronic headaches seeks relief by popping ibuprofen a few times a week. The meds help. Then she decides to stop taking them. And when she does, the pain creeps back. Surprised? Not exactly. The last thing you’d deduce from this imaginary experiment is that ibuprofen doesn’t help with headaches. But that’s basically what researchers suggested about needle and laser acupuncture’s effect on chronic knee pain in a new JAMA study. In the clinical trial, 282 adults age 50 and older with chronic knee pain were randomly assigned to needle or laser acupuncture treatments or a sham laser acupuncture treatment. After 12 weeks, participants who received the acupuncture reported modest improvements in pain. Then the treatments stopped, and nine months later, the participants had knee pain again. This, weirdly, led the researchers to conclude that acupuncture just doesn’t offer relief from chronic knee pain. Sounds confusing, right? Save for undergoing surgery, most chronic pain problems can never really be permanently solved. Even for treatments that make the discomfort vanish, it tends to come back once said treatment stops. That’s sort of a given. “Acupuncture can be used as pain management, but it doesn’t necessarily heal the pain permanently,” says Michelle Goebel-Angel, licensed acupuncturist at Chicago’s Raby Institute for Integrative Medicine at Northwestern. There’s more. The researchers of this small study posit that having a larger sample size might have yielded more significant results. Which is exactly what experts uncovered in 2012 meta-analysis of nearly 18,000 patients, which found that needle acupuncture does help with osteoarthritis, as well as other types of chronic pain. Still, like many treatments, acupuncture doesn’t have the same effect on everyone. But it’s absolutely worth trying, and tends to be the type of thing where the benefits accumulate over time (as in, longer than 12 weeks). “When patients feel the relief, they believe it,” says Goebel-Angel. “And that opens a new level of healing—the spiritual aspect of healing.”