Today marks the beginning of a new feature here at OlsonND.com, the weekly Health News Digest. I will compile and review the latest research on a variety of health news items.
HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY (HRT): HRT and the risks of breast cancer were reviewed in a recent symposium. It appears that even using HRT for a short time increased the risk of breast cancer. Which begs the question: why use HRT? The risks are not a small increase, but for some women constitute a doubling of their risk for breast cancer.
Dr. Scott’s Comments: Hormones are powerful and can create huge problems in our bodies. Estrogen, in particular, is a problem for women because of the risk of breast, endometrial, and ovarian cancers. Part of the problem lies in the fact that most HRT are synthetic hormones that are not natural to humans. Other problems have to do with the fact that many chemicals in our environment act like estrogens (including plastics, pesticides, and a host of other chemicals). The final question has to be should we be putting hormones in an aging person at all?
HRT is a travesty because there are many natural substitutes that work just as well, without the side effects.
CANCER MUCH WORSE FOR DIABETICS: Cancer is currently the number two killer worldwide and is rapidly approaching number one. People with diabetes are more than 40 percent likely to die in the years right after a cancer diagnosis than people who are not diabetic.
Dr Scott’s Comments: There are no well-established links between sugar consumption and cancer — at least not yet. This new study sheds light on another horrible aspect of diabetes: it makes surviving a cancer diagnosis harder. For me, this adds to the destruction wrought by sugar. Not only is sugar toxic to our blood vessels (witness the kidney, eye and heart damage in diabetics), but it also leads to obesity, heart disease and diabetes. Clearly we have to start avoiding the sugar and foods that act like sugar in our diets.
LOW GLYCEMIC DIET FOR DIABETICS: The prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association has published an article showing that diabetics eating foods that are low on the glycemic index had better sugar control than those that didn’t.
Dr Scott’s Comments: I’m going to borrow a word from my 10 year-old-daughter to describe the finding of this study: DUH! Medical science has come a long way, but they have yet to make any connection between what we eat and the diseases that we get. Maybe this study will change their minds. Yes, diabetes has something to do with the sugar and foods that act like sugar that we eat every day. I think that people eating Eating Below the Glycemic Index would fare even better… maybe even reverse their diabetes.
STRESS INCREASES HEART DAMAGE: People who reported a high amount of stress in their lives increased the risk of a cardiovascular event by as much as 50 percent when compared to people who have a low amount of stress. The increase in disease was evident by the number of heart attacks, bypass surgeries, and strokes that high-stress people suffered from.
Dr. Scott’s Comments: This study shows the strong connection between our minds and our bodies. Stress is a big killer, but is often hard to define or understand. I personally feel the best treatment for stress is exercise. Whenever the world starts weighing too much on my shoulders, I know I have to get out for a run, or hop on my bike, or even just take a walk outside. It also helps to listen to other people’s worries: When you hear someone describe what they are worried about, you realize that many of their fears are ungrounded, maybe yours are too?