Monday, April 25, 2011

Brain Injury and Depression: Physicians Working in the Dark -- So What Should We Do In the Meantime?

Review Reveals Only 2 Treatment Trials in This Large Patient Population

"April 25, 2011 — Despite the fact that depression after traumatic brain injury (TBI) affects up to 30% of patients — or approximately 360,000 individuals annually — an extensive analysis reveals a stunning lack of research into effective treatments."

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major public health problem, especially among male adolescents and young adults ages 15 to 24, and among elderly people of both sexes 75 years and older. Children aged 5 and younger are also at high risk for TBI.

TBI costs the country more than $48 billion a year, and between 2.5 and 6.5 million Americans alive today have had a TBI. Survivors of TBI are often left with significant cognitive, behavioral, and communicative disabilities, and some patients develop long-term medical complications, such as epilepsy.

Other statistics dramatically tell the story of head injury in the United States. Each year:

  • approximately 270,000 people experience a moderate or severe TBI,
  • approximately 70,000 people die from head injury,
  • approximately 1 million head-injured people are treated in hospital emergency rooms,
  • approximately 60,000 new cases of epilepsy occur as a result of head trauma,
  • approximately 230,000 people are hospitalized for TBI and survive, and
  • approximately 80,000 of these survivors live with significant disabilities as a result of the injury.

What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
TBI, also called acquired brain injury or simply head injury, occurs when a sudden trauma causes damage to the brain. The damage can be focal - confined to one area of the brain - or diffuse - involving more than one area of the brain. TBI can result from a closed head injury* or a penetrating head injury. A closed injury occurs when the head suddenly and violently hits an object but the object does not break through the skull. A penetrating injury occurs when an object pierces the skull and enters brain tissue.

*National Institutes of Health Consensus Development Conference Statement, October 26-28, 1998. Rehabilitation of Persons with Traumatic Brain Injury. Bethesda, MD, September 1999.


While the medical and pharmaceutical industries are spending billions trying to come up with a new magic bullet for depression, those who suffer from depression can go the tried and true "old skool" route by balancing their lifestyle choices.

Depression is more often caused by a lack of certain foods in the diet rather than something present in the diet. It is known that carbohydrates in the diet increase the brain’s production of serotonin. Also, the body needs the amino acid tryptophan, which is found in food proteins, to produce serotonin. So depression can sometimes be the result of a diet that is low in carbohydrates or tryptophan.

Here are some things you can do for yourself:
• drink plenty of pure water
• consume organic produce and hormone/antibiotic-free meats
salmon, tuna, mackerel, spinach, fresh or frozen peas (not canned), chick peas, chicken and turkey are especially helpful
• prepare your own meals and serve yourself as if you were royalty
• get 20 minutes of sunshine a day
• exercise (in accordance with physical condition)
• have mercury dental amalgams ("silver fillings") removed by a properly trained biological dentist and replace them with biocompatible materials (see
• laugh often
• do something interesting and fun every day
• spend time with those who make you feel good
• read something interesting
• pray/meditate/quiet time
• get 8 hours of deep, restful sleep
• check folic acid iron, phenylalanine, Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12 levels

• sugar and foods that metabolize as sugar
• caffeine
• artificial foods
• refined foods
• food additives
• alcohol
• those who make you angry/upset
• too much television, computer, cell phone (EMF)
• grains, (except rolled organic oatmeal) especially if gluten intolerant

A balanced lifestyle is a proven way to rebalance the body, mind and spirit -- and some of it is FREE!

Feel GOOD!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Lemons: Mood Elevator, Degreaser, Disinfectant and More!

Lemons can do a body good, inside and out. A study on the effects of aromatherapy found that lemons can give you a real pick-me-up. Lemons contain vitamin C, a potent antioxidant, and are considered a stimulant. Due to their low pH, lemons are alkalizing and antibacterial.

The average lemon contains approximately 3 tablespoons of juice. Allowing lemons to come to room temperature before squeezing makes the juice easier to extract. Lemons left unrefrigerated for long periods of time are susceptible to mold.

Squeeze lemon in your in water, tea, marinades, beverages, and for baking and garnish, and add lemon essential oil in candles, massage oils, scrubs and body lotions.

Lemon peel can be used as a wood cleaner and polish. It can also be used around the house as a degreaser, disinfectant, deodorizer, and stain remover.


Friday, April 15, 2011

GLOBAL HEALTH RADIO Premiers April 20, 2011

We are very excited to announce the premier of Global Health Radio, the internet's newest "all-things-health-related" call-in talk show, Wednesday, April 20, 2011 from 11:30am to 12:30pm PST on "Living Healthy for You" with Dr Cherilyn Lee. If you have internet service anywhere in the world, you can be a part of this event by logging on to and click on the appropriate icon.

April 20 show faqs: Are you 4/20-Friendly? 4/20-Curious? This show is all about "4/20", with our featured expert guests -- a medical doctor, a DUI attorney, a licensed grower and a licensed collective owner.

And I will be co-hosting! So adjust your time zone, log on and CALL IN!

**GLOBAL HEALTH RADIO will air on it's regularly scheduled time slot beginning Wednesday, May 4, 2011 from 2:30 to 3:30pm PST on**

and follow us on Twitter:

We look forward to hearing from you!


Friday, April 8, 2011

ONE LESS Demographic for Merck! FDA Rejects Gardasil for Use in Most Adult Women

I wondered if I had read this correctly at first, but it's true. FDA announced it refused approval for Merck's HPV vaccine for use in women 27-45, as it had not demonstrated to 'prevent' HPV-related cervical cancer in women older than 26.

This is a real blow and setback to Merck's marketing department, as FDA had previously postponed and refused approval for this age demographic, even after requesting and reviewing additional studies.

The vaccine is already approved to protect against the 6, 11, 16 and 18 strains of the human papillomavirus, which can lead to cervical cancer, in girls and women ages 9 to 26. Gardasil is also approved to prevent genital warts, anal cancer, anal dysplasias and precancerous lsesions in males of the same age.

It's no surprise that Gardasil sales have slowed substantially, from $1.4 billion in 2008 to $988 million last year.

Gardasil has been a hot button for Laguna Natural Health. Read more about Gardasil in the LNH blog archives.



Tuesday, April 5, 2011

US Government Calls for the Phase-Out of Amalgam!

In an extraordinary development that will change the global
debate about amalgam, the United States government has
announced that it supports a “phase down, with the goal of
eventual phase out by all Parties, of mercury amalgam.”
This statement – a radical reversal of its former position
that “any change toward the use of dental amalgam is likely
to result in positive public health outcomes” – is part of the
U.S. government’s submission for the upcoming third round
of negotiations for the world mercury treaty.*

While couched in diplomatic hedging – remember it is still
early in the negotiations – this new U.S. position makes three
significant breakthroughs for the mercury-free dentistry movement:
  1. The U.S. calls for the phase-out of amalgam ultimately and recommends actions to “phase down” its use immediately. Incredibly, the government adopted three actions that the World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry and Consumers for Dental Choice proposed at the negotiating session in Chiba, Japan. Our key ally, The Mercury Policy Project, laid the groundwork for this success at a World Health Organization meeting in 2009!
  2. The U.S. speaks up for protecting children and the unborn from amalgam, recommending that the nations “educat[e] patients and parents in order to protect children and fetuses.”
  3. The U.S. stands up for the human right of every patient and parent to make educated decisions about amalgam.

What does this mean? Our position – advocating the phase-out of amalgam – is now the mainstream because the U.S. government supports it. Who is the outlier now? It’s the pro-mercury faction, represented by the World Dental Federation and the American Dental Association. With the U.S. continuing its leadership role in this treaty, we will broadcast the U.S. position to other governments around the world, encouraging them to support amalgam “phase downs” leading to phase-outs not only globally, but within each of their countries.

We applaud the U.S. government. But tough work lies ahead. For example, we must demonstrate to the world that the available alternatives – such as composites and the adhesive materials used in atraumatic restorative treatment (“ART”) – can cost less than amalgam and will increase access to dental care particularly in developing countries.

For now though, let’s mark this watershed in the mercury-free dentistry movement: the debate has shifted from “whether to end amalgam” to “how to end amalgam.”

-- Charlie

Charles G. Brown
National Counsel, Consumers for Dental Choice
President, World Alliance for Mercury-Free Dentistry
5 April 2011

* The full text of the U.S. submission is available at Here is the excerpt on amalgam:

"We are aware that several delegations at INC-2 suggested mercury amalgam should not be included in Annex C, noting a number of difficulties and complexities related to this issue. The United States supports further consideration of dental amalgam by the INC such that the agreement is able to achieve the phase down, with the goal of eventual phase out by all Parties, of mercury amalgam upon the development and availability of affordable, viable alternatives. To the extent that Annex C is not structured to accomplish such a goal, the United States believes that a number of obligations could be considered within an appropriate operative paragraph of the agreement itself. Such a paragraph could commit Parties to phase down the use of mercury amalgam or address mercury releases through conducting and promoting further research on alternatives, mandating the use of separators in dental offices, promoting and incentivizing prevention strategies, educating patients and parents in order to protect children and fetuses, and training of dental professionals on the environmental impacts of mercury in dental amalgams, and to report on their progress in doing so to inform the Conference of the Parties on the progress being made to phase down amalgam use."