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Tea, citrus products could lower ovarian cancer risk, new research finds
Date:October 28, 2014 –Source-University of East Anglia
Tea and citrus fruits and juices are associated with a lower risk of developing ovarian cancer, according to new research from the University of East Anglia (UEA).–The research reveals that women who consume foods containing flavonols and flavanones (both subclasses of dietary flavonoids) significantly decrease their risk of developing epithelial ovarian cancer, the fifth-leading cause of cancer death among women.–The research team studied the dietary habits of 171,940 women aged between 25 and 55 for more than three decades.–The team found that those who consumed food and drinks high in flavonols (found in tea, red wine, apples and grapes) and flavanones (found in citrus fruit and juices) were less likely to develop the disease.–Ovarian cancer affects more than 6,500 women in the UK each year. In the United States, about 20,000 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year.–Prof Aedin Cassidy, from the Department of Nutrition at UEA’s Norwich Medical School, led the study. She said: “This is the first large-scale study looking into whether habitual intake of different flavonoids can reduce the risk of epithelial ovarian cancer.–“We found that women who consume foods high in two sub-groups of powerful substances called flavonoids — flavonols and flavanones — had a significantly lower risk of developing epithelial ovarian cancer.–“The main sources of these compounds include tea and citrus fruits and juices, which are readily incorporated into the diet, suggesting that simple changes in food intake could have an impact on reducing ovarian cancer risk.–“In particular, just a couple of cups of black tea every day was associated with a 31 per cent reduction in risk.”–The research was the first to comprehensively examine the six major flavonoid subclasses present in the normal diet with ovarian cancer risk, and the first to investigate the impact of polymers and anthocyanins.–The study was led by Prof Cassidy and Prof Shelley Tworoger, from the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Data was derived from the Nurses’ Health Study.–Story Source-The above story is based on materials provided by University of East Anglia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.–Journal Reference–A. Cassidy, T. Huang, M. S. Rice, E. B. Rimm, S. S. Tworoger. Intake of dietary flavonoids and risk of epithelial ovarian cancer. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2014; 100 (5): 1344 DOI: 10.3945/%u200Bajcn.114.088708
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SaskPower CEO resigns after smart meter report
SaskPower CEO Robert Watson speaks at the official opening of a carbon capture and storage facility at the Boundary Dam Power Station in Estevan, Sask. on Thursday, October 2, 2014. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Michael Bell)– The head of Saskatchewan’s Crown power company resigned Monday following a report into smart-meter fires that said customer safety wasn’t enough of a priority.–Economy Minister Bill Boyd said SaskPower CEO Robert Watson “took responsibility for the problems experienced with this project.”–“(He) felt it was time that there was new leadership at SaskPower,” said Boyd, who added that Mike Marsh, vice-president of operations, will step into the job for the interim.
CIC Smart Meter Review
Smart meters are seen in this photo taken July 31, 2014 in Regina.-Last summer, the province ordered SaskPower to remove more than 100,000 smart meters that had already been installed in homes after at least eight of the devices caught fire in June and July.-Boyd said it was evident for some time that there were problems with the meters.-“There was not enough consideration given to customer safety, the program was rushed and there (were) warning signs that were overlooked. It was clear that there was no one that was in overall charge of the program,” the minister said.-Watson won’t be receiving severance pay, Boyd said.-Saskatchewan’s Crown Investment Corp. was directed to do a review after the fires. The investigation results released Monday found that rain water and contaminants getting into the meters appeared to contribute to them failing.-“In various parts of the province, eight meters failed catastrophically, melting or burning and in some cases damaging the sides of houses,” the report[F1] said. The failures were not related to “hot sockets” or installation issues, it said.-The report also said SaskPower failed to look at the possibility that the meters could short out and catch fire.-It said that the utility looked at 359 returns and found that 18 smart meters were burned and no longer operational. Three more had high temperature errors, while 107 had display problems and 67 showed error codes.-“The (Return Material Authorization) process involves meters that have had issues in the field, and includes the eight meters involved in the destructive failures,” the review said. “The causes of these issues range from broken displays, over-voltage, communication issues, or simply the meters were dropped and no longer function properly.”-Boyd said the government is taking the review’s findings seriously and the Crown corporation will be directed to follow its recommendations. They include replacing all the meters that were provided by U.S. manufacturer Sensus. SaskPower is planning to have removal completed by March 15.–Watson announced in September that Sensus was refunding $24 million for all the smart meters the province purchased. That covered all devices that were installed and had to be removed, as well as those that hadn’t been put in yet.-Watson said Sensus was also giving SaskPower $18 million in credit for new meters, and another $5 million was to go toward developing a device suited to the Saskatchewan climate.–The NDP Opposition is asking for an independent investigation by the provincial auditor. New Democrat finance critic Trent Wotherspoon said the report is “damning.”-“This government simply didn’t have the consideration of the safety of Saskatchewan people, which is appalling in and of itself,” said Wotherspoon, who added that the problems with the meters were “concealed.”-“They rejected looking into the examples in other jurisdictions — Alabama and Philadelphia — where there was meter failure going on with the very meters that this government was putting taxpayers on the hook to pay.”-Wotherspoon said while the government claims to have recouped costs from the program, “millions of dollars (have been) wasted.”-The problems in Saskatchewan prompted officials in Medicine Hat, Alta., to suspend installation of electricity smart meters in August. A spokesman for the city said there had been no reported problems.-In Ontario, smart meters have been linked to 23 reports to Ontario’s fire marshal between 2011 and 2013, including 13 small fires. Karen Cormier, a spokeswoman for the Ontario Energy Board, has said that 36 of 77 utilities in Ontario use smart meters from Sensus, but none of them are the model used in Saskatchewan.-A smart meter records consumption of energy in small intervals and can relay the information electronically to a utilities company. It eliminates the need to estimate bills when a meter reader can’t do an on-site check.
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CIC SMART METER REVIEW MAKES RECOMMENDATIONS TO IMPROVE CROWN PROCUREMENT
Released on October 27, 2014
Review Finds Customer Safety Was Not Given Enough Priority
An investigation into the causes of fires and the procurement practices surrounding SaskPower’s smart meter program has concluded that customer safety was not given a high enough priority by SaskPower. This and other findings have led to a series of recommendations aimed at preventing such problems in the future.-“Customer safety does not appear to have been a consideration until after reports of smart meter fires involving Philadelphia Electric Company (PECO) arose,” independent experts at the law firm Robertston Stromberg found. “It did not become a matter of central importance until June of 2014.”-During June and July of 2014, there were eight different cases where smart meters caught fire, prompting the suspension of the installation program and a later cabinet order to remove the meters.-Crown Investments Corporation (CIC) was directed to conduct a review and commissioned a number of independent experts to examine different aspects of the issue. -PwC was asked to review procurement and contract management. Consulting engineers Ritenburg and Associates of Regina was asked to examine the technical and safety issues and the law firm Robertson Stromberg was commissioned to look at legal and product liability issues.-An initial study of the causes of the fires shows that rainwater and contaminants getting into the meters appear to be a major contributing factor in the failures, not issues related to their installation.[F2] That portion of the CIC review, conducted by Regina’s Ritenburg and Associates, shows that some of the Sensus meters used in Saskatchewan have a tendency to leak. The eight meters in question were completely destroyed and impossible to analyze.[F3] However, others that quit because of other problems and were removed have shown signs of moisture and conductive contaminants getting in.-This will have to be confirmed by other testing now underway by consultants for SaskPower, but Ritenburg found no evidence that the failures were related to “hot sockets” or installation problems[F4]. -The review also identified a number of problems in the procurement and project management processes.–Overall, the company’s risk management process was found to be lacking. While SaskPower did identify a number of risks, the possibility the meters could actually short out and catch fire was not considered until similar fires at the PECO became public.– While contractor and employee safety were considered, customer safety was not given enough priority, the review found.–SaskPower had also received advice that it should buy small batches of smart meters through a “stepped procurement” process, install them gradually and watch for problems. The company did not do that. After some smaller initial purchases, it went on to buy more than 100,000 meters in a three week period and initiated a full-scale installation program. This was done because they had the budget available for it in 2013.-Both PwC and Robertson Stromberg found that there was no single point of control overseeing the smart meter project, making it easier for warning signals to go unheeded.
There were several such warnings:
A suit filed in Alabama in May of 2010 alleged Sensus meters were catching fire;
After losing the SaskPower contract to Sensus in December of 2011, a meter manufacturer warned SaskPower of past problems with Sensus; and
Fires in Philadelphia forced the PECO to remove Sensus meters in October of 2012.
While SaskPower did respond to the PECO fires with changes to the smart meter program, the review questions whether enough was done.-SaskPower did increase its efforts to detect faulty sockets, enabling an extra temperature sensor and seeking assurances from Sensus that the meters were safe. -However, the remote reading function never did work properly and there were so many false alarms for overheating, SaskPower could not investigate them all[F5]. Even after 100,000 installations, SaskPower had to read all of the smart meters manually.-
Ritenburg made several recommendations including:
Given the potential fire hazard, all of the existing Sensus meters should be removed before next spring and potentially rainy weather;
Those meters should be examined for arcing or other problems when they come out, to establish more information;
When installing meters, more site photos should be taken in case the scene has to be analyzed after any future failures; and
All meter incidents should be reported and a data base created.
[F6] PwC made the following recommendations:
SaskPower should have specific guidelines on identifying and operating high-risk procurement projects;
SaskPower needs a more formal “process safety management” program to ensure customer safety is paramount;
There should be a single “contract owner” for such important, complex projects with a specific risk management process built in; and
Clearly identify the roles and responsibilities for the management of enterprise risks relevant to procurement.
Robertson Stromberg also concluded that in large scale procurements of this kind, the vendor should consider buying product liability insurance to cover the buyer, in case of problems.–CIC Minister Don McMorris said the provincial cabinet has reviewed a summary of the findings and the government has directed CIC to:
Ensure that SaskPower removes all Sensus meters by March 15, 2015 at the latest;
Ensure that SaskPower implements all of the consultants’ recommendations; and
Work with all the Crowns to ensure they are applying the lessons from this incident across the Crown sector.
For more information, contact:
Randy Burton
CIC
Regina
Phone: 306-787-5889
Email: [email protected]
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Silver nanoparticle applications and human health.
Ahamed M1, Alsalhi MS, Siddiqui MK.
Author information
Abstract
Nanotechnology is rapidly growing with nanoparticles produced and utilized in a wide range of commercial products throughout the world. For example, silver nanoparticles (Ag NP) are used in electronics, bio-sensing, clothing, food industry, paints, sunscreens, cosmetics and medical devices. These broad applications, however, increase human exposure and thus the potential risk related to their short- and long-term toxicity. A large number of in vitro studies indicate that Ag NPs are toxic to the mammalian cells derived from skin, liver, lung, brain, vascular system and reproductive organs. Interestingly, some studies have shown that this particle has the potential to induce genes associated with cell cycle progression, DNA damage and apoptosis in human cells at non-cytotoxic doses. Furthermore, in vivo bio-distribution and toxicity studies in rats and mice have demonstrated that Ag NP administered by inhalation, ingestion or intra-peritoneal injection were subsequently detected in blood and caused toxicity in several organs including brain. Moreover, Ag NP exerted developmental and structural malformations in non-mammalian model organisms typically used to elucidate human disease and developmental abnormalities. The mechanisms for Ag NP induced toxicity include the effects of this particle on cell membranes, mitochondria and genetic material. This paper summarizes and critically assesses the current studies focusing on adverse effects of Ag NPs on human health.- Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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Purslane weed (Portulaca oleracea): a prospective plant source of nutrition, omega-3 fatty acid, and antioxidant attributes.
ScientificWorldJournal. 2014;2014:951019
Authors: Uddin MK, Juraimi AS, Hossain MS, Nahar MA, Ali ME, Rahman MM
Abstract
Purslane (Portulaca oleracea L.) is an important plant naturally found as a weed in field crops and lawns. Purslane is widely distributed around the globe and is popular as a potherb in many areas of Europe, Asia, and the Mediterranean region. This plant possesses mucilaginous substances which are of medicinal importance. It is a rich source of potassium (494 mg/100 g) followed by magnesium (68 mg/100 g) and calcium (65 mg/100 g) and possesses the potential to be used as vegetable source of omega-3 fatty acid. It is very good source of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and gamma-linolenic acid (LNA, 18 : 3 w3) (4 mg/g fresh weight) of any green leafy vegetable. It contained the highest amount (22.2 mg and 130 mg per 100 g of fresh and dry weight, resp.) of alpha-tocopherol and ascorbic acid (26.6 mg and 506 mg per 100 g of fresh and dry weight, resp.). The oxalate content of purslane leaves was reported as 671-869 mg/100 g fresh weight. The antioxidant content and nutritional value of purslane are important for human consumption. It revealed tremendous nutritional potential and has indicated the potential use of this herb for the future.-PMID: 24683365 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
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PSA test should be abandoned as screen for prostate cancer, task force says
The blood test mostly commonly used to screen men for prostate cancer should be dropped, because it can result in more harm than good, says a Canadian task force. The prostate-specific antigen, or PSA, test measures inflammation that can be elevated for many reasons other than cancer, such as normal enlargement of the prostate with age or an infection. Researchers said over-diagnosis occurs when cancer is detected correctly but would not cause symptoms or death. The main problems are false-positive results and over-diagnosis, the review indicated. A positive PSA test result often leads to more tests such as a biopsy, which carries risks of bleeding, infection, and urinary incontinence. In most men with prostate cancer, the tumour grows slowly, and they’re likely to die of another cause before the prostate tumour causes any symptoms. Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed non-skin cancer in men. The prognosis for most prostate cancers is good, with a 10-year survival rate of 95 per cent.
PSA: to test or not to test?
Routine PSA prostate cancer test not recommended
Screening aims to find cancer before symptoms appear and reduce the chance of dying from cancer with early treatment. In Monday’s issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care reviewed the latest evidence and international best practice to weigh the benefits and harms of PSA screening with or without digital rectal exams. “Available evidence does not conclusively show that PSA screening will reduce prostate cancer mortality, but it clearly shows an elevated risk of harm. The task force recommends that the PSA test should not be used to screen for prostate cancer,” Dr. Neil Bell, chair of the prostate cancer guideline working group member, and his team concluded. The guideline is aimed at physicians and other health-care professionals and policymakers. It updates the task force’s recommendation from 1994 on screening with the PSA test.
The new recommendations include:
For men under age 55 and over age 70, the task force recommends not using the PSA test to screen for prostate cancer. This strong recommendation is based on the lack of clear evidence that screening with the PSA test reduces mortality and on the evidence of increased risk of harm.
For men aged 55–69 years, the task force also recommends not screening, although it recognizes that some men may place high value on the small potential reduction in the risk of death and suggests that physicians should discuss the benefits and harms with these patients.
These recommendations apply to men considered high risk — black men and those with a family history of prostate cancer — because the evidence does not indicate that the benefits and harms of screening are different for this group.
The key evidence was from a well-done European study. It showed inconsistent results, with a small potential positive effect over a long period of time, which the reviewers balanced against the clear evidence of harm, said Dr. James Dickinson, a member of the prostate cancer guideline working group and a professor of family medicine at the University of Calgary. “Fundamentally this is not a good enough test to be worth using,” Dickinson said in an interview. “Let’s hope that better things come in the future, but right now it’s not worth using. It’s more likely to cause harm than benefit.”
Watchful waiting advocated
A Canadian specialist, however, takes issue with the recommendation. The task force’s guidelines are flawed for Canada, said Dr. Neil Fleshner, who studies and treats prostate cancer at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre in Toronto. “By using the PSA test, we can absolutely find lethal cancers early and by intervening in those men, we can save their lives. Therefore, these recommendations ndoubtedly will lead to more prostate cancer deaths,” Fleshner said. [F7]–The task force’s Bell said almost one in five men aged 55 to 69 have at least one false-positive PSA test, and about 17 per cent end up with unnecessary biopsies.–“If you screen men [aged 55 to 69] based on the protocol in those trials, every two to four years for 13 years, five out of 1,000 will die from prostate cancer. If you don’t screen, six out of 1,000 men will die from prostate cancer,” Bell said. “So the reduction in prostate cancer mortality is one in 1,000 or about 0.1 per cent.”–“To get the benefit, you’re diagnosing about 27 or 28 men with prostate cancer who would never benefit from the treatment related to prostate cancer because they would never suffer any difficulty from it.”–Bell added that more than half of detected prostate cancers are over-diagnosed. The task force said that separating screening from treatment through watchful waiting or active surveillance, could change the ratio of risks to benefits of PSA screening, but the hypothesis needs to be tested. Dr. Murray Krahn of Toronto’s University Health Network wrote a journal commentary on prostate cancer screening. Krahn said the task force guideline provides a good summary, but he would like to see more emphasis on patient preference, such as whether the harms are important, and shared decision-making.. With files from CBC’s Kas Roussy and The Canadian Press
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Could copper prevent spread of Ebola?
Date:
October 30, 2014
Source:
University of Southampton
 
“Based on our research on viruses of similar genetic structure, we expect copper surfaces to inactivate Ebola, and to help control the spread of this virus if employed for publicly-used touch surfaces,” explains Professor Keevil, pictured here.–Research from the University of Southampton has indicated that copper could help to prevent the spread of Ebola.–Hand washing, disinfectants and quarantine procedures alone have been found to be insufficient to contain the spread of the virus. Research by Professor Bill Keevil at the University of Southampton has offered promising evidence that antimicrobial copper — engineering materials with intrinsic hygiene benefits — could be a valuable addition to these existing measures.–The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) note the Ebola virus is transmitted through direct contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person, or through exposure to contaminated objects. Viruses similar to Ebola are susceptible to a broad range of surface disinfectants, however testing against Ebola itself cannot currently be conducted due to limited access to laboratories with the required safety clearances. The CDC has therefore instructed hospitals to use disinfectants with proven efficacy against resistant viruses such as norovirus, adenovirus and poliovirus1.–Peer-reviewed and published data from laboratory studies conducted by Professor Bill Keevil, Chair of Environmental Healthcare at the University of Southampton, demonstrates copper’s ability to rapidly and completely inactivate norovirus2. Recent work in Germany has also explored its effectiveness against other viral biothreat agents3. Clinical trials conducted in the UK, US and Chile have shown surfaces made from solid copper or copper alloys — collectively termed ‘antimicrobial copper’ — continuously reduce surface contamination by greater than 80 per cent. These results indicate a potential role for antimicrobial copper touch surfaces in preventing the spread of Ebola.–“Based on our research on viruses of similar genetic structure, we expect copper surfaces to inactivate Ebola, and to help control the spread of this virus if employed for publicly-used touch surfaces,” explains Professor Keevil.-Antimicrobial copper surfaces have been described as a ‘no touch’ solution, meaning that no special measures or human intervention are required for it to continuously kill pathogens, in between regular cleans. Replacing frequently-touched surfaces, such as door handles, taps and light switches, with solid copper or copper alloy equivalents will provide a more hygienic environment, with fewer bacteria and viruses available to spread infections. With this in mind, the use of antimicrobial copper surfaces could offer an additional method of controlling the current spread of Ebola.–Interim Guidance for Environmental Infection Control in Hospitals for Ebola Virus, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/hcp/environmental-infection-control-in-hospitals.html—-Story Source-The above story is based on materials provided by University of Southampton. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.-Journal Reference-Sarah L. Warnes, C. William Keevil. Inactivation of Norovirus on Dry Copper Alloy Surfaces. PLoS ONE, 9(5): e98333 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0098333
 
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[F1]Reports can be altered to offset and litigation that the company or province or electric company may have to pay out—imagine the electric company installing these things and a house—for a ½ a mill breaks down and burns as a result of this anal technology—that can add up—this was the situation in Vancouver Island when a 250,000 home caught fire and the electrical company went into deniability because of the cost to replace that home would have doubled
[F2]This is such BS and a real uncreative report to show that it was an environmental issue rather then a technical one or even inadequate installation procedures –would be as well curious to see if the backing plates were also removed or replaced—the one on Vancouve island was left on and not repaced and the technician forced the meter on the plate causing a over heating of the plate—technical error down by the installer which would have made the company liable
[F3]As I said BS –these were convienantly destroyed beyond examination—and based on the others –they made a conclusion based on a guess—this is really interesting to make such a claim without a real dissection of the unit and a real examination—chances are the unit was working and it was not compliant to the current tech in the home
[F4]And I wonder how they came to that conclusion since the devixces were convienantly destroyed beyond there capability to examine—would indicate a huge surge or a Hot Socket to me
[F5]This is incredibly alarming they had so many issues before the fires occurred that they should have seen the red flags on this and yanked them right then and there —to have so many problems on going and not being able to maintain or repair the issues would have been a clear sign to pull them off the house
[F6]I love how this is showing incompetence —these things were probably already being implemented—this is normal procedures when something goes wrong –photos—reports and follow through so this is basically a smoke screen to again alleviate responsibilty and litigation
[F7]Here is a Money making Doctor –as you can see he is making hhis dollars by sticking his finger up someone’s arse –and then possibly billing the gov’t for a surgical procedure —yet with all the men who do reach 80+ and have prostate issues—it never kills them—something else usually does —so is the test necessary at all…from the research —only if there is a need to investigate and the procedure itself could cause death to examine the person
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Show of the Month November 8 2014
Niacin and Schizophrenia– History and Opportunity
Healing the Kidneys with Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda)
Effects of poor eating habits persist even after diet is improved
Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease. A Dietary Connection
Biological fat with a sugar attached essential to maintaining brain’s supply of stem cells
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Niacin and Schizophrenia– History and Opportunity
by Nick Fortino, PhD Candidate
(OMNS Oct 27, 2014) Schizophrenia is usually treated with prescription antipsychotic drugs, many of which produce severe adverse effects (1-6); are linked to an incentive for monetary profit benefiting pharmaceutical corporations (7-13); lack sufficient evidence for safety and efficacy (9, 14); and have been grossly misused (15-20). Orthomolecular (nutritional) medicine provides another approach to treating schizophrenia, which involves the optimal doses of vitamin B3-also known as niacin, niacinamide, nicotinamide, or nicotinic acid-in conjunction with an individualized protocol of multiple vitamins. The orthomolecular approach involves treating “mental disease by the provision of the optimum molecular environment for the mind, especially the optimum concentrations of substances normally present in the human body” (21).
Evidence for the Niacin Treatment of Schizophrenia
Vitamin B3 as a treatment for schizophrenia is typically overlooked, which is disconcerting considering that historical evidence suggests it effectively reduces symptoms of schizophrenia, and has the added advantage, in contrast to pharmaceuticals, of mild to no adverse effects (22-35). After successful preliminary trials treating schizophrenia patients with niacin, pilot trials of larger samples commenced in 1952-reported in 1957 by Hoffer, Osmond, Callbeck, and Kahan. Dr. Abram Hoffer began an experiment involving 30 patients who had been diagnosed with acute schizophrenia. Participants were given a series of physiological and psychological tests to measure baseline status and were subsequently assigned randomly to treatment groups. Nine subjects received a placebo, 10 received nicotinic acid, and 11 received nicotinamide (the latter two are forms of vitamin B3). All participants received treatment for 42 days, were in the same hospital, and received psychotherapy from the same group of clinicians. The two experimental groups were administered three grams of vitamin B3 per day. Each of the three treatment groups improved, but the two vitamin B3 groups improved more than the placebo group as compared to baseline measures. At one year follow up, 33% of patients in the placebo group remained well, and 88% of patients in the B3 groups remained well. These results inspired many subsequent trials, and those that replicated the original method produced similarly positive results.
Antipsychotic Drugs
That schizophrenia may be caused or aggravated by a deficiency of essential nutrients appears to have eluded the majority of the health care providers serving the schizophrenic population, as evidenced by the fact that “antipsychotic medications represent the cornerstone of pharmacological treatment for patients with schizophrenia” (36). Waves of different antipsychotic drugs have been developed throughout the last 60 years, which have not decreased the prevalence of schizophrenia; in fact it has increased (15, 37).–Although dangerous when taken in high doses and for a long period of time, the value of antipsychotics appears to be that in the short term they can help to bring some control to schizophrenic symptoms, not by curing the condition but by inducing a neurological effect that is qualitatively different from the schizophrenic state. Dr. Hoffer acknowledged their value and in his private practice he would introduce antipsychotics and vitamins simultaneously because antipsychotics work rapidly and vitamins work more slowly, so a person could benefit from the short term relief from symptoms that antipsychotics provide while the vitamins slowly, but surely, healed the deficiency causing the schizophrenic symptoms. This also allowed for a much easier process of tapering from the drugs.
“For schizophrenia, the recovery rate with drug therapy is under 15%. With nutritional therapy, the recovery rate is 80%.” – Abram Hoffer, MD, PhD
 
More Research Needed
Further research into the orthomolecular treatment of schizophrenia is imperative. Saha, Chant, and McGrath (38) found that mortality rates in schizophrenia have increased in recent decades and warned, “in light of the potential for second-generation antipsychotic medications to further adversely influence mortality rates in the decades to come, optimizing the general health of people with schizophrenia warrants urgent attention.” The orthomolecular approach may be, at least, an integral part of a treatment program that optimizes general health and leads to a life free from schizophrenic symptoms.–Questions abound regarding individuals’ experiences while on these different treatments. Particularly the psychological and relational, or, intrapersonal and interpersonal experience while on antipsychotics versus an orthomolecular treatment must be more thoroughly documented because it is in this domain that a person ascertains his/her quality of life. And only the person who has these experiences can provide such an account; no psychiatrist peering in from outside a one-way mirror on a person hearing voices, nor any brain image, nor any valid and reliable measure can ever reflect the person’s living qualitative experience as accurately as the person can[F1]. This is why I have designed a multiple case study to explore in depth the experiences of individuals successfully treating their schizophrenia using orthomolecular medicine. The central research question is: What is the experience of individuals with schizophrenia who switched from using antipsychotics to orthomolecular medicine to treat their condition?
A Call for Participants
Inclusion criteria for this study are: over age 18, diagnosed as having schizophrenia, treated for a period of time primarily with antipsychotics, and are currently treated by or were cured by an orthomolecular protocol. Participation will consist of three interviews with the researcher (in person or online video conference), each of which will focus on a distinct period: symptomatic but unmedicated, primarily using antipsychotic drugs, and primarily using orthomolecular medicine. The researcher will also request one interview with the orthomolecular practitioner if possible, the diagnosing psychiatrist if possible, and at least two close friends and/or family members about their experiences of relating with the primary participant during these different periods. Anonymity is guaranteed if requested.–I am a Psychology Ph.D. student and this is my dissertation study. I never had the privilege of meeting Dr. Hoffer, but his spirit, conviction, and massive production of great work have inspired my writing this dissertation. Toward that latter part of his career, he commented on the nature of schizophrenia treatment research:
Case histories have disappeared from journal articles, as if living patients no longer existed or counted for very much. Instead, authors describe their methods, describe what criteria they used in selecting their groups of patients which were used in their prospective double blind controlled studies, and provide ample charts and statistics. I have read many papers where it is impossible to get any feeling for a single patient. (29)[F2]
This dissertation attempts to address this deficit of qualitative data. The narrative accounts that multiple case studies yield are invaluable, and can be accessible and relatable for people in a position of gathering information about schizophrenia treatments for themselves or a loved one. This dissertation is not an attempt to prove the legitimacy of the orthomolecular treatment; Dr. Hoffer and others have dedicated their professional lives to that endeavor. This is meant to explore the experience of the treatment, especially as it compares to the experience of the antipsychotic treatment. I am recruiting from a very small population of people, so I ask you to consider participating if you fit the criteria, or pass this invitation along to someone you know who fits the criteria. I can be reached by phone (408) 840-1253 or email ([email protected]) to answer questions and/or to begin the research process.
 
References:
1. Arana, G. W. (2000). An overview of side effects caused by typical antipsychotics. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 61(8), 5-11. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10811237.
2. Ciranni, M. A., Kearney, T. E., & Olson, K. R. (2009). Comparing acute toxicity of first- and second-generation antipsychotic drugs: A 10-year, retrospective cohort study. The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 70(1), 122-129. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19192473
3. Ho, B. C., Andreasen, N. C., Ziebell, S., Pierson, R., & Magnotta, V. (2011). Long-term antipsychotic treatment and brain volumes: A longitudinal study of first-episode schizophrenia. Archives of General Psychiatry, 68(2), 128. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21300943
4. Pope, H. G., Keck, P. E., & McElroy, S. L. (1986). Frequency and presentation of neuroleptic malignant syndrome in a large psychiatric hospital. The American Journal of Psychiatry, 143(10), 1227-1233. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2876647
5. Saddichha, S., Manjunatha, N., Ameen, S., & Akhtar, S. (2008). Diabetes and schizophrenia-effect of disease or drug? Results from a randomized, double blind, controlled prospective study in first-episode schizophrenia. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 117, 342-347. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18307585
6. Woods, S. W., Morgenstern, H., Saksa, J. R., Walsh, B. C., Sullivan, M. C., Money, R., Hawkins, K. A., Gueorguieva, R. V., & Glazer, W. M. (2010). Incidence of tardive dyskinesia with atypical and conventional antipsychotic medications: Prospective cohort study. The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 71(4), 463-475. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3109728/
7. Angell, M. (2004). The truth about the drug companies: How they deceive us and what to do about it. New York, N.Y.: Random House LLC.
8. Berenson, A. (2007, January 05). Lilly settles with 18,000 over zyprexa. The New York Times, pp. 1-2. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/05/business/05drug.html?_r=0
9. Kendall, T. (2011). The rise and fall of atypical antipsychotics. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 199(4), 266-268. doi:10.1192/bjp.bp.110.083766 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22187726
10. Moynihan, R., & Alan, C. (2005). Selling sickness: How the world’s biggest pharmaceutical companies are turning us all into patients. New York, N.Y.: Nation Books.
11. Moynihan, R., Heath, I., & Henry, D. (2002). Selling sickness: the pharmaceutical industry and disease mongering. British Medical Journal, 324(7342), 886. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11950740
12. Scherer, F. M. (1993). Pricing, profits, and technological progress in the pharmaceutical industry. The Journal of Economic Perspectives, 7(3), 97-115. https://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/jep.7.3.97
13. Spielmans, G. I., & Parry, P. I. (2009). From evidence-based medicine to marketing-based medicine: Evidence from internal industry documents. Journal of Bioethical Inquiry, 7(1), 13-29. doi:10.1007/s11673-010-9208-8 http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11673-010-9208-8#page-1
14. Lieberman, J. A., Stroup, T. S., McEvoy, J. P., Swartz, M. S., Rosenback, R. A., Perkins, D. O., Keefe, R. S. E., Davis, S. M., Davis, C. E., Lebowitz, B. D., Severe, J., Hsiao, J. K. (2005). Effectiveness of antipsychotic drugs in patients with chronic schizophrenia. The New England Journal of Medicine, 353(12), 1209-1223. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17335312
15. Whitaker, R. (2010). Anatomy of an epidemic: Magic bullets, psychiatric drugs, and the astonishing rise of mental illness in America. New York, N.Y.: Crown Publishers.
16. Kuehn, B. M. (2010). Questionable antipsychotic prescribing remains common, despite serious risks. Journal of the American Medical Association, 303(16), 1582-1584. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20424239
17. Moran, M. (2011). Misuse of antipsychotics widespread in nursing homes. Psychiatric News, 46(11), 2. http://psychnews.psychiatryonline.org/newsarticle.aspx?articleid=108671
18. Ray, W. A., Federspiel, C. F., & Schaffner, W. (1980). A study of antipsychotic drug use in nursing homes: Epidemiologic evidence suggesting misuse. American Journal of Public Health, 70(5), 485-491. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6103676
19. Stevenson, D. G., Decker, S. L., Dwyer, L. L., Huskamp, H. A., Grabowski, D. C., Metzger, E. D., & Mitchell, S. L. (2010). Antipsychotic and benzodiazepine use among nursing home residents: Findings from the 2004 National Nursing Home Survey. The American journal of Geriatric Psychiatry: Official Journal of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry, 18(12), 1078-1092. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20808119
20. Szaz, T. (1974). The myth of mental illness: Foundations of a theory of personal conduct. New York, N.Y.: Harper Perennial.
21. Pauling, L. (1968). Orthomolecular psychiatry. Varying the concentrations of substances normally present in the human body may control mental disease. Orthomolecular psychiatry. Science, 160, 265-271. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/5641253
22. Cleckley, H. M., Sydenstricker, V. P., & Geeslin, L. E. (1939). Nicotinic acid in the treatment of atypical psychotic states. The Journal of the American Medical Association, 112(21), 2107-2110. http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=288714
23. Hoffer, A. (1962). Niacin Therapy in Psychiatry. Springfield, Il: C. C. Thomas.
24. Hoffer, A. (1963). Nicotinic acid: An adjunct in the treatment of schizophrenia. American Journal of Psychiatry, 120, 171-173. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/13963912
25. Hoffer, A. (1966). The effect of nicotinic acid on the frequency and duration of re-hospitalization of schizophrenic patients: A controlled comparison study. International Journal of Neuropsychiatry, 2(3), 234-240. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/4225426
26. Hoffer, A. (1970a). Childhood schizophrenia: A case treated with nicotinic acid and nicotinamide. Schizophrenia, 2, 43-53. http://orthomolecular.org/library/jom/1970/pdf/1970-v02n01-p043.pdf
27. Hoffer, A. (1973). A neurological form of schizophrenia. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 108, 186-194. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1941147/
28. Hoffer, A. (1994). Chronic schizophrenic patients treated ten years or more. Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine, 9(1), 7-37. http://orthomolecular.org/library/jom/1994/pdf/1994-v09n01-p007.pdf
29. Hoffer, A. (1996). Inside schizophrenia: Before and after treatment. Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine, 11(1), 45-48. http://orthomolecular.org/library/jom/1996/pdf/1996-v11n01-p045.pdf
30. Hoffer, A. & Fuller, F. (2009). Orthomolecular treatment of schizophrenia. Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine, 24(3,4), 151-159. http://orthomolecular.org/library/jom/2009/pdf/2009-v24n01-p009.pdf
31. Hoffer, A., & Osmond, H. (1964). Treatment of schizophrenia with nicotinic acid: A ten year follow up. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 40, 171-189. doi:10.1111/j.1600-0447.1964.tb05744.x http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14235254.
32. Hoffer, A., & Osmond, H. (1980). Schizophrenia: Another long term follow-up in Canada. Orthomolecular Psychiatry, 9(2), 107-113. http://psycnet.apa.org/psycinfo/1981-13316-001
33. Hoffer, A., Osmond, H., Callbeck, M. J., & Kahan, I. (1957). Treatment of schizophrenia with nicotinic acid and nicotinamide. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Psychopathology, 18(2), 131-157. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/13439009
34. Tung-Yep, T. (1981). The use of orthomolecular therapy in the control of schizophrenia-a study preview. The Australian Journal of Clinical Hypnotherapy, 2(2), 111-116. http://schizophreniabulletin.oxfordjournals.org/content/12/1/141.full.pdf
35. Verzosa, P. L. (1976). A report on a twelve-month period of treating metabolic diseases using mainly vitamins and minerals on the schizophrenias. Orthomolecular Psychiatry, 5(4), 253-260. http://www.orthomolecular.org/library/jom/1976/pdf/1976-v05n04-p253.pdf
36. Gilmer, T. P., Dolder, C. R., Lacro, J. P., Folsom, D. P., Lindamer, L., Garcia, P., & Jeste, D. V. (2004). Adherence to treatment with antipsychotic medication and health care costs among Medicaid beneficiaries with schizophrenia. American Journal of Psychiatry, 161(4), 692-699. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15056516
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Healing the Kidneys with Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda)
Posted by Dr Sircus on November 11, 2009 | Filed under Medicine, Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda)
Sodium bicarbonate is not only an excellent agent for natural chemotherapy, bringing as it does higher O2 levels through increased alkalinity to the cells, it is also one of the most basic medicines we have for kidney disease. New research by British scientists at the Royal London Hospital shows that sodium bicarbonate can dramatically slow the progress of chronic kidney disease.[1] We don’t need a thousand years of tests to understand something as simple as water and it is quite the same with bicarbonate, which is always present in the best drinking waters. Bicarbonate acts to stimulate the ATPase by acting directly on it.[2] -The simple household product used for baking, cleaning, bee stings, treating asthma, cancer and acid indigestion is so effective in treating kidney disease that it prevents patients from having to be put on kidney machines. The findings have been published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. Bicarbonate is a truly strong universal concentrated nutritional medicine that works effectively in many clinical situations that we would not normally think of. It is a prime emergency room and intensive care medicine that can save a person’s life in a heartbeat and it is also a supermarket item that you can take right off the shelf and use for more things than one can imagine – including diaper rash. -Dr. SK Hariachar, a nephrologist who oversees the Renal Hypertension Unit in Tampa Florida stated, upon seeing the research on bicarbonate and kidney disease, ”I am glad to see confirmation of what we have known for so long. I have been treating my patients with bicarbonate for many years in attempts to delay the need for dialysis, and now we finally have a legitimate study to back us up. Not only that, we have the added information that some people already on dialysis can reverse their condition with the use of sodium bicarbonate”. -John, a dialysis technician at the same center as Dr. Hariachar, who used to be on dialysis himself for 2 years as a result of kidney failure, had his kidneys miraculously start functioning to the point where dialysis was no longer needed. He states that he was prescribed oral doses of sodium bicarbonate throughout his treatment, and still takes it daily to prevent recurrences of kidney failure. Dr. Hariachar maintains though, that not everyone will be helped by taking bicarbonate. He says that those patients who have difficulty excreting acids, even with dialysis using a bicarbonate dialysate bath, that, “oral bicarbonate makes all the difference.”
Kidneys Produce Bicarbonate
The exocrine section of the pancreas has been greatly ignored in the treatment of diabetes even though its impairment is a well documented condition. The pancreas is primarily responsible for the production of enzymes and bicarbonate necessary for normal digestion of food. Bicarbonate is so important for protecting the kidneys that even the kidneys get into the act of producing bicarbonate and now we know the common denominator between diabetes and kidney disease. When the body is hit with reductions in bicarbonate output by these two organs,’ acid conditions build and then entire body physiology begins to go south. Likewise when acid buildup outstrips these organs normal bicarbonate capacity cellular deterioration begins.-The kidneys alone produce about two hundred and fifty grams (about half a pound) of bicarbonate per day in an attempt to neutralize acid in the body. -The kidneys monitor and control the acidity or “acid-base” (pH) balance of the blood. If the blood is too acidic, the kidney makes bicarbonate to restore the bloods pH balance. If the blood is too alkaline, then the kidney excretes bicarbonate into the urine to restore the balance. Acid-base balance is the net result of two processes, first, the removal of bicarbonate subsequent to hydrogen ion production from the metabolism of dietary constituents; second, the synthesis of “new” bicarbonate by the kidney.[3] -It is considered that normal adults eating ordinary Western diets have chronic, low-grade acidosis which increases with age. This excess acid, or acidosis, is considered to contribute to many diseases and to contribute to the aging process. Acidosis occurs often when the body cannot produce enough bicarbonate ions (or other alkaline compounds) to neutralize the acids in the body formed from metabolism and drinking highly acid drinks like Coke, Pepsi and we are even seeing reports on bottled mineral water being way too acidic.-Acid-buffering by means of base supplementation is one of the major roles of dialysis. Bicarbonate concentration in the dialysate (solution containing water and chemicals (electrolytes) that passes through the artificial kidney to remove excess fluids and wastes from the blood, also called “bath.”) should be personalized in order to reach a midweek pre-dialysis serum bicarbonate concentration of 22 mmol/l.[4] Use of sodium bicarbonate in dialysate has been shown in studies to better control some metabolic aspects and to improve both treatment tolerance and patients’ life quality. Bicarbonate dialysis, unlike acetate-free biofiltration, triggers mediators of inflammation and apoptosis.[5]-One of the main reasons we become acid is from over-consumption of protein. Eating meat and dairy products may increase the risk of prostate cancer, research suggests.[6] We would find the same for breast and other cancers as well. Conversely mineral deficiencies are another reason and when you combine high protein intake with decreasing intake of minerals you have a disease in the making through lowering of pH into highly acidic conditions. When protein breaks down in our bodies they break into strong acids.-Unless a treatment actually removes acid toxins from the body and increases oxygen, water, and nutrients most medical interventions come to naught.-These acids must be excreted by the kidneys because they contain sulfur, phosphorus or nitrogen which cannot break down into water and carbon dioxide to be eliminated as the weak acids are. In their passage through the kidneys these strong acids must take a basic mineral with them because in this way they are converted into their neutral salts and don’t burn the kidneys on their way out. This would happen if these acids were excreted in their free acid form.-Substituting a sodium bicarbonate solution for saline infusion prior to administration of radiocontrast material seems to reduce the incidence of nephropathy.[7] – Dr. Thomas P. Kennedy
American Medical Association
Bicarbonate ions neutralize the acid conditions required for chronic inflammatory reactions. Hence, sodium bicarbonate is of benefit in the treatment of a range of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. Sodium bicarbonate is a well studied and used medicine with known effects. Sodium bicarbonate is effective in treating poisonings or overdoses from many chemicals and pharmaceutical drugs by negating their cardiotoxic and neurotoxic effects.[8] It is the main reason it is used by orthodox oncology – to mitigate the highly toxic effects of chemotherapy.-Sodium bicarbonate possesses the property of absorbing heavy metals, dioxins and furans. Comparison of cancer tissue with healthy tissue from the same person shows that the cancer tissue has a much higher concentration of toxic chemicals, pesticides, etc.-Sodium bicarbonate injection is indicated in the treatment of metabolic acidosis, which may occur in severe renal disease, uncontrolled diabetes, and circulatory insufficiency due to shock or severe dehydration, extracorporeal circulation of blood, cardiac arrest and severe primary lactic acidosis. The acid/alkaline balance is one of the most overlooked aspects of medicine. In general, the American public is heavily acid, excepting vegetarians, and even their bodies have to face increasing levels of toxic exposure, which help turn the body to acidic pH conditions.-For more detailed information feel free to consult my book Sodium Bicarbonate E-Book that’s with a reasonable price, or for a more personal approach check my Consultations page.
[1] http://www.nelm.nhs.uk/en/NeLM-Area/News/2009—July/20/Bicarbonate-supplementation-may-slow-renal-decline-in-chronic-kidney-disease/
[2] Origin of the Bicarbonate Stimulation of Torpedo Electric Organ Synaptic Vesicle ATPase. Joan E. Rothlein 1 Stanley M. Parsons. Department of Chemistry and the Marine Science Institute, University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, California, U.S.A.
[3] Levine DZ, Jacobson HR: The regulation of renal acid secretion: New observations from studies of distal nephron segments. Kidney Int 29:1099–1109, 1986
[4] http://www.uptodate.com/patients/content/abstract.do?topicKey=~G/p55S8w8sQDwqG&refNum=28
[5] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16523427
[6] news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7655405.stm
[7] JAMA 2004;291:2328-2334,2376-2377.
http://www.urotoday.com/56/browse_categories/renal_transplantation_vascular_disease/ sodium_bicarbonate_may_prevent_radiocontrastinduced_renal_injury.html
[8] These include, Benzotropines (valium) cyclic antidepressants (amytriptayine), organophosphates, methanol (Methyl alcohol is a cheap and potent adulterant of illicit liquors) Diphenhydramine (Benedryl), Beta blockers (propanalol) Barbiturates, and Salicylates (Aspirin). Poisoning by drugs that block voltage-gated sodium channels produces intraventricular conduction defects, myocardial depression, bradycardia, and ventricular arrhythmias. Human and animal reports suggest that hypertonic sodium bicarbonate may be effective therapy for numerous agents possessing sodium channel blocking properties, including cocaine, quinidine, procainamide, flecainide, mexiletine, bupivacaine, and others.
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Effects of poor eating habits persist even after diet is improved

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