Friday, February 28, 2014
We’ve all heard that calcium is crucial for preventing bone and joint problems, but new research suggests there may be another mineral we need to be mindful of: zinc. In particular, a study suggests that levels of zinc within the cartilage cells may help to explain why tissue destruction occurs in patients with osteoarthritis.
Arthritis is a leading cause of disability in the world, affecting 52.5 million adults in the US alone. Despite the prevalence of osteoarthritis, there are currently no cures to stop the progression of cartilage destruction that takes place in individuals with the condition. Researchers are still attempting to understand what happens at a molecular level to cause the tissue degradation.
Osteoarthritis results in the break down of cartilage between the bones, causing joint stiffness and swelling. Tissue destruction is caused by proteins called matrix-degrading enzymes, which are produced by cells within the cartilage. Matrix-degrading enzymes need zinc to survive, which led researchers to hypothesize that zinc levels play an important role in osteoarthritis.
Using lab mice, the researchers found that a protein called ZIP8 is responsible for transporting zinc within the cells, setting off a chain of events that eventually results in cartilage destruction. Their findings suggest that treatments to deplete zinc in the cartilage cells or inhibit this ZIP8 function may help to stop osteoarthritis. If the research is confirmed in future studies, keeping zinc levels in check could become an integral part of osteoarthritis treatment.
Many patients with osteoarthritis find that it can be successfully managed by a conservative, multimodal treatment, including exercise, nutrition, and chiropractic care. Research suggests that a combination of chiropractic and exercise can significantly ease symptoms in patients with osteoarthritis in the knees, hip, and hands.
Zinc may be missing link for osteoarthritis therapies. Medical News Today. February 17, 2014. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/272658.php.
Cell, Kim et al. Regulation of the catabolic cascade in osteoarthritis by the zinc axis.
Zinc Levels Tied to Osteoarthritis
Thursday, February 27, 2014
Sitting is the new smoking, and here’s another reason why: a new study shows that every hour you spend sitting during the day increases your likelihood of suffering from a disability.
Researchers publishing in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health analyzed the health records of 2,285 adults over the age of 60 who wore accelerometers to track their daily physical activity levels. Their disability levels were calculated based on their capacity to complete Activities of Daily Living (ADL). The average adult spent 9 hours per a day sitting during their waking hours, even after adjusting for moderate physical activity levels, socioeconomic status, and health concerns. The researchers discovered that each waking hour of sitting resulted in a 46% increase in the risk of ADL disability. The results add to earlier research linking sitting to an elevated risk of diabetes, early death, and heart disease.
“These findings support programs encouraging older adults to decrease sedentary behavior regardless of their engagement in moderate or vigorous activity,” the researchers concluded.
But it’s not just older adults who are victim to the negative health effects of a sedentary lifestyle. Recent research suggest that nearly 80% of Americans fail to meet the recommended guidelines for physical activity levels, putting them at risk for a variety of diseases, musculoskeletal disorders, and obesity.
Even increasing your activity level by 20 minutes a day can make a difference in the health of obese patients,another recent study showed. Chiropractors can advise you on building a safe, effective exercise program to prevent and reduce chronic pain.
Sedentary time in US older adult associated with disability in activities of daily living independent of physical activity. Journal of Physical Activity and Health 2014. http://journals.humankinetics.com/jpah-in-press/jpah-in-press/sedentary-time-in-us-older-adults-associated-with-disability-in-activities-of-daily-living-independent-of-physical-activity
Sitting Tied to Increased Disability Risk
"Chiropractic is the only science that exactly locates the cause of dis-ease then adjusts it." B.J. Palmer, D.C., Ph.C.
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While not conclusive, a new study found an association between lack of vitamin D and non-migraine headaches. With data from over 11,000 adults, researchers concluded that “non-migraine headache was associated with low levels of serum 25(OH)D (vitamin D). Although adjustments were done for possible confounders, this finding may still reflect lifestyle rather than causality, and further studies are needed to investigate this.”
If you suffer from non-migraine headaches, you will want to ask your doctor if you are getting enough vitamin D.
Vitamin D for Headaches?
Many Americans don’t know how much and what kinds of sugar are in their beverages, according to a new study. But people who are concerned about sugar tend to be better at avoiding it, researchers found.
The confusion is understandable. Regular soft drinks and many fruit juice beverages and sports drinks are sweetened with added sugars such as sucrose or high fructose corn syrup, while 100-percent fruit juices only contain natural sugars. Milk has natural sugar too, even though it isn’t sweet. Diet soft drinks may taste sweet, but they don’t contain any sugar.
“Some dietary recommendations call out ‘sugary’ beverages,” lead researcher Gail Rampersaud told Reuters Health in an email. “We wanted to see how consumers were interpreting that term and whether they had a good understanding of the types of sugars or other sweeteners in commonly consumed beverages.”
Rampersaud studies nutrition and education at the University of Florida in Gainesville’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences.
She said the new study was originally designed to see how consumers interpret drink labels.
Rampersaud and her colleagues surveyed 3,361 U.S. adults through an online questionnaire. They asked participants about their diets including non-alcoholic beverage consumption and quizzed them on types and amounts of sugar found in various beverages. They also asked about use of food labels and general nutrition and health knowledge.
People in the study reported drinking the most water – more than four cups every day, on average. They drank about two and a half cups per day of “other beverages” such as coffee and tea.
Further down the list were sugar-sweetened beverages, milk, diet drinks and 100-percent fruit juice and blends.
Most people – 96 percent – identified regular soft drinks as sugary. But only three quarters of them knew soft drinks contain added sugar, according to findings published in Nutrition Research.
Over half of participants referred to fruit drinks, fruit cocktails and sports drinks as sugary. About 60 percent correctly reported that fruit drinks and sports drinks contain added sugar, and half knew cranberry juice cocktail contains added sugar.
It’s possible many people use the word “sugary” to mean sweet, regardless of the type of sweetener used. Forty-five percent of people identified diet soft drinks as sugary and only one quarter were sure diet drinks are sugar-free.
Another 40 percent called 100-percent fruit juices sugary. Those juices only contain natural sugars and not added sugars.
More than one third of participants incorrectly thought milk contains no sugar. Less than one quarter correctly indicated that milk has natural sugar called lactose.
About half of people were concerned about the total amount of sugar in their drinks. Just under 40 percent were worried about only the added sugars, and most of them made beverage choices based on those concerns.
Not all sweet beverages should be avoided, Rampersaud said. Fruit juices, for instance, contain vitamins.
“If dietary recommendations recommend to replace sugary beverages in the diet (with the intent of replacing added-sugar beverages), our results suggest that nutrient-dense beverages containing only natural sugars, such as 100-percent orange juice, could also be eliminated from the diet,” Rampersaud said.
“This means that consumers could miss out on the nutrition and health benefits that some beverages offer,” she said. They may also keep drinking other beverages that contain added sugars they don’t know about.
Rampersaud believes including added sugars on the Nutrition Facts panels would be helpful.
But because that would require more regulations, consumers need to know what to look for on labels and in ingredient lists so they can make the best choices.
“We need more research to identify education efforts that would be successful in enhancing consumer knowledge about sugars with the overall goal of helping consumers make more healthful beverage choices,” Rampersaud said.
SOURCE: http://bit.ly/18BEgN3 Nutrition Research, online December 6, 2013.
(c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2013. Check for restrictions at: http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
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Consumers often confused about types of sugar in drinks
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
A recent study shows that not only are neck adjustments safe for the elderly, they’re extremely effective for neck pain when combined with exercise. Although earlier studies have shown the benefits of chiropractic for neck pain, there have been no randomized clinical trials on the treatment specifically for the elderly.
The study, published in The Spine Journal, included 241 patients over the age of 65 years who suffered from persistent neck pain. Patients were randomly assigned to one of three treatment groups: spinal manipulation therapy delivered by a chiropractor, plus home exercise (SMT+HE); supervised exercise plus home exercise (SRE+HE); or home exercise alone (HE).
After 12 weeks of treatment, over 60% of chiropractic patients had at least a 75% improvement in pain, compared to approximately 25% of patients in the SRE+HE group, and nearly 20% of the HE only group. These significant differences were less pronounced at the one year follow-up however.
Still, the researchers pointed out that any decrease in pain greater than 50% is considered a clinically meaningful and substantial change for neck pain. Additionally the chiropractic patients had greater reductions in medication usage. They wrote that the “lack of serious adverse events, tolerability, and high adherence to care suggest the combination of SMT with home exercise is an effective treatment in seniors with chronic NP.”
Chiropractic care included a diversified, thrust technique, mobilization, and a low-velocity type of joint oscillation, for a maximum of 20 sessions. The force and type of SMT was individualized, and adjunct therapy included heat and ice therapy, massage, and assisted stretching. Home exercise consisted of simple exercises for balance, coordination, and flexibility taught by a chiropractor or exercise therapist. Supervised exercise consisted of 20, one-hour sessions monitored by an exercise therapist.
Neck pain affects an estimated 20% of adults over the age of 70. Unfortunately, many elderly patients suffer from coexisting conditions, and because of the possibility of drug interference, cannot use prescription painkillers. Others may wish to use drug-free treatments out of personal preference. This makes conservative treatments like chiropractic care all the more important for the management of neck pain in the elderly.
Maiers M, et al. Spinal manipulative therapy and exercise for seniors with chronic neck pain. The Spine Journal 2013; doi10.1016/j.spinee.2013.10.035.
Chiropractic Effective for Neck Pain in Seniors , Study Finds
While cancer is a very frightening disease, a recent study found that it has been overdiagnosed with the advent of mammograms. Researchers noted “our estimate of overdiagnosed cancers attributable to mammography over the past 30 years involved more than 1 million women.”
This is shocking news given the trauma of breast cancer. Given the data, the authors question the current value of mammograms:
“Our study raises serious questions about the value of screening mammography. It clarifies that the benefit of mortality reduction is probably smaller, and the harm of overdiagnosis probably larger, than has been previously recognized. And although no one can say with certainty which women have cancers that are overdiagnosed, there is certainty about what happens to them: they undergo surgery, radiation therapy, hormonal therapy for 5 years or more, chemotherapy, or (usually) a combination of these treatments for abnormalities that otherwise would not have caused illness.”
Given the seriousness of these findings, women would be prudent in seeking second opinions and even considering less aggressive forms of care in their response to positive findings.
Overdiagnosis of Breast Cancer
Monday, February 24, 2014
Car accidents can damage and misalign your neck and shoulder bones. If you have been even in a accident you should see your chiropractor for an assessment.
Sunday, February 23, 2014
Friday, February 21, 2014
Have you switched to diet soda in an attempt to lose some weight? Not so fast! You'll probably want to reconsider after reading this article - http://www.prevention.com/food/healthy-eating-tips/diet-soda-bad-you
If you’ve got knee pain with an occasional aching back, recent research suggests you may want to take care of that back pain sooner rather than later. A new study found that patients with back pain undergoing knee replacement surgery had poorer outcomes two years after surgery compared to patients without back pain.
The study showed that patients with low back pain had Oxford Knee Scores that were 5 points lower on average compared to those without back pain, and they also scored 6 points lower for overall physical health. Patients with low back pain were also more likely to require revision surgery.
In contrast, other musculoskeletal disorders, like hip and ankle problems, did not affect post-surgery outcomes. The researchers did not know whether this difference was because back pain was more disabling than hip and ankle problems, or because patients with back pain have a higher sensitivity to pain. They suggested that patients who are candidates for knee surgery be informed that their chances of full recovery are lower if they also suffer from back pain.
Chiropractors can provide safe, non-invasive treatments for both back and knee pain. Research has suggested that chiropractic care and targeted exercises are effective for relieving knee arthritis and a number of problems causing back pain.
Boyle JK, et al. Influence of low back pain on total arthroplasty outcome. Knee 2013.
Piper, L. Low back pain hinder knee replacement surgery. medwireNews.
Back Pain May Make Knee Problems Worse, Study Suggests
Thursday, February 20, 2014