WHAT YOUR DOCTOR DIDN’T TELL YOU

What you don’t know can hurt you, especially in the field of medicine. But in the words of a cousin-in-law physician, “doctors are healers, not teachers.” In fact, there’s a lot of information necessary for the maintenance or restoration of your health that you need to know, especially as you age… and you probably won’t hear it from your doctor unless you know enough to ask him or her very specific questions and then only if your doctor is up to speed on whatever it is you want to know. The average length of a doctor visit is 11 minutes… doctors simply don’t have the time to meet at length with patients.

What qualifies me to write on this subject? I’ve had 33 surgeries and a huge array of medical problems in my 74 years, and I come from a large family who collectively have had a lot of experience with the medical establishment.  Moreover, since my first brain tumor surgery in 1969, I’ve read medical literature and tried to keep up with the latest developments in medicine, health and nutrition that many physicians simply don’t have the time to follow. Finally, I took 37 credits of biological sciences alone in undergraduate school so I understand, to a large extent, how the human body works.  One of my physicians once told me, “You’re the healthiest-looking sick person I’ve ever seen,” so I must be doing something right.

I listed ten health tips below which I believe should add 10-15 healthy years to your expected lifespan.  Of course there’s no guarantees in life but your likelihood for achieving much better health will be vastly improved,  They ten are:  1) choose the best health insurance you can afford, 2) eat a healthy diet, 3) exercise, 4) get adequate sleep, 5) maintain good relations with family and friends, 6) take dietary supplements and herbals, 7) get tested, 8) take responsibility for your health, 9) get effective medical treatment, and 10) keep up with the latest in health, medicine and nutrition.

1. CHOOSE THE BEST HEALTH INSURANCE YOU CAN AFFORD.

If you can afford old-fashioned “fee-for-service” medical insurance such as Blue Cross Blue Shield, you should get it because of the flexibility it allows in seeing any doctor you want. With regular Blue Cross I can, and have, gone directly to many medical specialists and facilities in the U.S., including the prestigious Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. You may never need Mayo, but if you or a loved one has or gets a potentially-deadly or debilitating medical condition and you simply can’t receive the best care locally, you have the option of going to Mayo, or Sloan-Kettering, or Johns Hopkins, etc. On the other hand, try going to Mayo with most HMOs or Obamacare.  I simply made an appointment at Mayo and then went there in 1998 for a week of testing and diagnosis.  I only had to check with Mayo first and Minnesota’s Blue Cross/Blue Shield, but not with a primary health care physician to get his/her permission.

As a health care consumer, you don’t want anything or anyone between you and good medical care, and with most HMOs your primary care physician is a gatekeeper that manages (controls) your medical care (costs).  If you can, avoid Obamacare.  It’s high cost insurance for most people, with deductibles in the thousands of dollars and double the price of former co-pays, which make it very poor health insurance.  Everyone at least needs catastrophic health care, however, so do get that as a minimum.

I had a cousin-in-law who died much sooner than necessary as a result of an HMO! He suffered from abdominal pain constantly over many months but was repeatedly told by his HMO doctor to “take it like a man,” and that “an MRI won’t help.” Finally, his family was able to get him to another physician who then ordered an MRI.  He was diagnosed with cancer throughout his body and died in a hospital 3 days later.  He had no time to get his affairs in order.  Many HMOs have improved since then but they still contain built-in incentives to minimize your medical costs. However, if you can only afford an HMO, then you need to shop around carefully for your primary care physician, one who is not reluctant to refer you to a medical specialist or to order medical tests when warranted.

2. EAT A HEALTHY DIET

One of the complementary medical doctors in the U.S. most respected by the medical establishment is Andrew Weil, MD.  When Doctor Weil was asked on T.V. what was the one most significant thing people could do to improve their health through their diet, Dr. Weil replied “avoid eating any transfatty acids.” Transfatty acids are created when hydrogen gas is bubbled through oil, thereby turning a liquid oil into a solid fat (margarine). The margarine label will contain the ingredient “partially hydrogenated oil.”  Most cookies and cakes contain partially hydrogenated oils. They not only raise bad cholesterol levels, called low-density lipoproteins or LDL, they also lower good cholesterol or high-density lipoproteins or HDL.  In other words, they’re worse for your health than butter or lard (Andrew Weil, MD, Eating Well for Optimum Health).

Another really bad food that has gained a foothold in the American diet is high-fructose corn syrup. It’s in most non-diet sodas, jellies, coffee whiteners, etc. and is now thought to be a major culprit in the American diabetes explosion.

The next most important thing you can do to eat healthily is eat plenty of vegetables, fruits, fish, whole grains and low-fat dairy.  Men should eat at least 9 fruits/vegetables/day, women, 7, and children 5. Finally, to maintain or restore good health, drink a few liters of water a day.  Most people are dehydrated but don’t know it.  Dehydration even affects back pain.  Some people carry a water bottle around with them or keep it on their desk because it’s the only way they can drink enough.

One needs to eat adequate quantities of the right kinds of the three macronutrients: protein, fats/oils and carbohydrates.  These are called macronutrients because you need relatively large amounts of them. Vitamins and minerals, on the other hand, are called micronutrients because you need those only in small quantities.  Fruits, vegetables and grains are carbohydrates (which includes fiber).  Meat is mostly protein with some fat and a tiny amount of carbohydrate.  Beans (especially soybeans), peas, and nuts are good sources of protein and healthy oil.  Many people are deficient in Essential Fatty Acids, the Omega-3’s, which are basically fish oils. EPA and DHA. EPA and DHA can also be manufactured by the liver from Flax Seed Oil, or you can simply take fish oil supplements. In addition, the Omega-9’s (Olive oil, and to a lesser extent, Canola oil) lower your bad cholesterol, low-density lipoproteins, or LDL.  An excellent book on the percentages of calories one should consume from the 3 macronutrients is Barry Sears’ The Zone.  Dr. Sears recommends 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 30% fats/oils. This is significantly different from the U.S.D.A. recommendation.

There is an epidemic of diabetes in the United States.  Avoiding or controlling diabetes is extremely important because diabetes significantly increases your chances of getting many other diseases including heart disease.  One of the latest theories on the cause of diabetes suggests that the pancreas become worn out as the body is constantly assaulted with large amounts of sugars and starches.  A good substitute for sugar is Agave Nectar which, unlike sugar, has a very low Glycemic Index.  A good but healthy substitute for non-caloric artificial sweetener is the natural non-caloric sweetener, Stevia.  When my fasting glucose level reached the pre-diabetes level of 101, my die reduced it to 86.

Foods which are mostly carbohydrates have been assigned a Glycemic Index (GI), which shows how quickly the body converts them into glucose and consequently gets into your bloodstream. The higher its Glycemic Index, the faster the carbohydrate in the food is converted to Glucose or blood sugar and gets into your bloodstream.  Guess what foods have the highest Glycemic Index and are consequently bad for you?  White potatoes, white bread, sugar, candy, canned fruits, any highly processed and refined grains and starches like white rice.  So when eating carbohydrates, to the extent possible, try to eat only fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and whole-grain foods like bread made from pumpernickel, or 100% stone-ground whole wheat flour.  Stone-ground whole wheat bread has a moderate Glycemic Index, white and regular whole-wheat breads have a very high GI.  If you cannot find stone-ground whole wheat bread, pumpernickel bread also has a low Glycemic Index as does Pita bread made from stone-ground whole wheat flour.

You should note, however, that the books, Wheat Belly, and Grain Brain, both contend that no one should eat wheat because of all of the adverse effects it has on one’s health.  I’m still not convinced.

The Swiss breakfast cereal, Muesli, unlike most breakfast cereals, has a moderate GI because the oats in it are uncooked. In addition, oats are much better for you than wheat; plus you probably already have a lot of wheat in your diet from bread, pasta, muffins, biscuits, cookies, crackers, cake, piecrust, pancakes, most breakfast cereals, etc. If the taste/texture of Muesli is difficult for you to enjoy, try adding some other oat cereal, like Cheerios, with it.  I eat most mornings old fashioned oatmeal cooked in 1% milkfat milk, and topped with extra virgin Coconut oil, cinnamon and a little raw sugar and mike.

The final word on diet is to be very careful what you snack on.  Sometimes fruit just doesn’t satisfy…a healthy but great-tasting alternative is natural peanut butter (which contains only peanuts and sometimes a little salt) and low-sugar preserves on stone-ground whole-wheat or pumpernickel bread. The combination of peanut butter and bread makes for a complete protein; moreover, the oil in peanut butter is monosaturated and therefore very healthy. Nuts also make healthy snacks. If you must have chocolate, make it very dark chocolate (with at least 70% cocoa solids) since the anti­oxidants in it make modest quantities very healthy.

3. EXERCISE

The affect on your health of not exercising has the equivalent impact of smoking a pack of cigarettes a day.  It’s not simply a matter of living longer but also feeling a lot better and energetic and avoiding getting sick. There’s three types of exercise you should do: 1) aerobic, 2) weight training, and 3) NEAT.. .non-exercise activity thermogenesis. Aerobic for the health of you cardiovascular system, weight training to maintain muscle mass and bone density, NEAT to help keep you limber, keep muscle tone and burn calories.

Incidentally, NEAT is simply doing anything physical such as gardening and household chores.

When I had a full-time job before I retired, I had very little discretionary time to go to the gym and work out.  Moreover, I thought it was a waste of time and energy to simply lift weights and run…energy that could be used in accomplishing something in addition to keeping you in shape.  Therefore, I spent about 3-4 hours/day, 7 days a week, feeding and watering and cleaning up after a feral cat colony as well a group of homeless stray cats.  I trapped and had neutered about 30 cats on my property as part of the national Trap/Neuter/Return program.  Some of the 30 were homeless strays which I took in as pets, another group were feral (afraid of people) and made their home  in a makeshift in-out shelter on my property, and some were also feral but simply stopped by for food and water.  I got all of the exercise I needed from looking after the cat colony but also got a lot of satisfaction in preventing 30 cats from starving, thirsting, freezing (my shelter was heated), procreating, and being unloved and uncared for.

Cats may not be your thing but think about what you can do to make a difference while getting all of the exercise you need.  Nowadays, however,  I have balance problems and therefore do exercises prescribed for me by my physical therapists.

4. GET ADEQUATE SLEEP

The National Sleep Foundation recommends 7-9 hours of sleep a night for adults, 8 1/2 – 9 1/2 for teens, and 9-11 hours for children 5 to 12 years old, and 11-13 hours per night for children 3 to 5.  Tiredness is only one of many things that happen to you when you don’t get enough sleep…things from obesity to weakened immunity and susceptibility to many ailments. Obstructive and/or Central Sleep Apneas (breath stoppages) rob you of restful sleep as well as increase your likelihood of high blood pressure and heart disease.  Apneas also add to a potbelly and fine lines around eyes.  If you snore heavily, you should be tested in an overnight sleep study to determine if you have serious sleep apneas and therefore need a c-pap, bi-pap, or v-pap sleep machine to use while sleeping.  Note that there is large variation among people as to how much sleep they need.

5. MAINTAIN GOOD RELATIONS WITH FAMILY AND FRIENDS

There’s more to maintaining good health and overcoming illness than medicine, nutrition, lifestyle (smoking, exercise) and supplements. Social and psychological factors play an important role. Close friends and family are important. Attitudes such as “hostility” have caused more than their share of illness and disease. Love, on the other hand, has a positive influence on health. Even love for a loyal and beloved pet helps one maintain good health, as well as recover faster from serious illness (Andrew Weil, MD, Natural Health, Natural Medicine).

6. USE DIETARY SUPPLEMENTS & HERBALS

Although this situation is beginning to change, physicians know little about nutrition’s role in preventing disease.  Their expertise is mostly in the area of diagnosis and treatment, not prevention.  It’s obviously much better to prevent getting heart disease, cancer, diabetes, stroke, etc. rather than trying to cure it once you have it.  In addition, some illnesses currently have no cure and therefore prevention is the only defense.

From the beginning of human history up to the present, people tried home remedies in an effort to prevent or cure disease.  There were quack remedies for just about anything that ailed you; however a few of those remedies turned out to be effective, like Saw Palmetto for a mild to moderate enlarged Prostate. The effectiveness and side effects of many of today’s herbals and supplements are not well known…and some are even contaminated.  So it’s understandable that doctors are wary of them.

Things have improved significantly over the years.  Many folk remedies have been researched. You won’t hear much about them from the medical establishment because most have not gone through the very expensive clinical trials paid for by drug companies…patents aren’t granted for naturally-occurring substances.  Without patent for a drug or supplement, anyone can sell the herbal or supplement which means there will be a lot of competition in the herbal/supplement marketplace and therefore small profits (making clinical trials for herbals and supplements a huge waste of money for drug companies).  When you do hear about research on supplements and herbals conducted by the mainstream medical establishment, you can’t trust it. Simply reading the research design for the research shows whether it’s sloppy work and deliberately designed to fail (the research at Johns Hopkins and published in JAMA on vitamin e is a good example of incompetent and sloppy research).

A good source to check for effectiveness, dosage and side effects of herbals is the PDR for Herbals.  An updated Prescription Desk Reference for prescription drugs is published each year.  The data in that book is based on clinical trials drug companies conduct and pay for. The information in this new PDR for Herbals is based on the best information available; much research on herbals initially came from the monographs on herbals published by Germany’s Kommission E.

Some herbals have little or no active ingredients, others simply don’t work, some shouldn’t be taken in the high dosages that they are being sold, and some are dangerous (like Ma Huang or Ephedra). To cite just one example, many daily vitamin/mineral supplements have at least 100% of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for iron in them. Meanwhile, according to Dr. Atkins’ Vita-Nutrient Solutions, excess iron leads to a number of diseases and also increases your risk of heart disease.  Up until about 20 years ago no one knew why pre-menopausal women had significantly fewer heart attacks. Then a medical researcher in East Finland (Jukka Salonen, M.D.) discovered that low iron was the reason. Therefore, the only people taking supplemental iron should be menstruating women since nearly 100% of pregnant women and 50% of all women are iron-deficient (DHEA Breakthrough).  Most others get plenty of iron from fortified foods such as cold breakfast cereals, most of which usually have 25-40 % of the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) in just one ounce.

If you’re getting up there in years and your short-term memory is getting bad, check out Vitamin B-12, Phosphatidylserine, Acetyl-L-Camitine, Alpha-Glyceryl Phosphoryl Choline (A-GPC), Reservatrol, Pycnogenol, and blueberries on the Internet or read about them in Jean Carper’s, Your Miracle Brain.  They have been researched and are in the scientific literature and make Ginkgo Biloba look ineffective. Incidentally, my post on this blog, “Preventing Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, ALS, Dementia, etc.” lists about 15 specifics and also includes an interview with a medical researcher that you can hear just by clicking your left mouse button over the red words at the end of the article.  My blog address is: www.MikeRussoExpose.com.

100 years ago food supplements were unnecessary because back then food was more nutritious. In the last 100 years, however, with the advent of pesticides, herbicides, livestock hormones, toxic chemicals in food and water, depleted soil, fast food, junk food, soda pop, greater meat consumption and less vegetable consumption, etc., food alone simply can no longer provide all of the nutrients your body needs. So we’ve turned to food supplements. There are hundreds of supplements to choose from at your health food store. So what should you take and what can you afford to take? What’s effective and what’s bogus? If you can’t afford much or can’t be bothered with much, then I suggest the following is the minimum an adult should take to keep healthy:

a. Fish oil (2,000 to 4,000 mg/day).  The EPA and DHA in it should total over 1000 mg/day.

b. Calcium citrate and Magnesium citrate (1,200 mg Calcium/day; 600 mg Magnesium/day). The citrate form is easily absorbed and doesn’t require the high stomach acidity that most other forms do.

c. Vitamin D (5-8,000 mg/day).  The D-3 form is the easiest absorbable.

d. Multi-vitamin-mineral with 100% of everything (except that men should not take supplemental iron).

e. If over 50 years old: Vitamin B-12 (under-the-tongue lozenge daily), Vitamin B-6, and Folate is essential for brain health.

f. Vitamin K-2 (which directs the body to send calcium to the bones and or teeth and away from arteries)

g. Coenzyme Q-10 (CoQ10, take if on Statin drugs): the Ubiquinol form is 4 times more absorbable than the Ubiquinone form and therefore is what I recommend.

One very important mineral you can’t get much of via over-the-counter, is Potassium.  Potassium is important because it lowers blood pressure, the counter to and opposite of Sodium, but is very difficult to obtain in sufficient quantities simply from food… and over-the-counter Potassium supplements by law contain only 3% of your RDA. Bananas, which everyone will tell you are high in Potassium, only have about 8% of the RDA. Same with oranges. Gatorade, which some will advise for Potassium, actually has only 1% of the RDA. However, an 11.5-ounce can of low-sodium V-8 juice has 34% of the RDA for Potassium, and one tablespoon of some brands of Organic Blackstrap Molasses have 20%.

7. GET TESTED

Everyone should have a blood test annually called a Complete Blood Count/Blood Chemistry/Hepatology test. This test shows if your liver and kidneys are working O.K., whether you have an infection somewhere in your body, your good and bad cholesterol, triglycerides level, etc. It’s a great diagnostic tool and starting point for further testing.

Although the complete test is inexpensive, your doctor will usually only order a part of it because health insurers would say the entire test was “medically unnecessary” to do it all and would not reimburse for it.  Funny thing, because the laboratory machine that actually tests the blood must be calibrated and set for the exact tests your doctor orders, so instead of $30 for the complete test which requires no calibration, it will cost about $80 or more for just a few of its components. Remember, American medicine is mostly about treating problems, not preventing them.  This one inexpensive test catches lots of potential problems. I get my prescription for it and other labwork my doctors don’t usually prescribe from Life Extension Foundation.

The Life Extension Foundation (www.LEF.org) will sell you a prescription for many different blood tests that you can take to any Labcorps testing facility if you have a problem convincing your doctor of the importance of this test (but do ask your doctor first for it as part of a physical).

8. TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR HEALTH

Many people leave all things medical up to their doctors.  Since most physicians spend only about 11 minutes per patient per office visit, they simply don’t have the time to find out everything they need to know about you and you don’t have the time with them to ask many questions.  Most people consequently need to know much more about medicine.  Some of the basics, such as “140/90 blood pressure is high,” are well known.  But how do you know, for instance, when you’re ingesting the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of 30 grams of fiber? Your stool floats in the toilet when you’re eating enough fiber! Also, what is the significance of the color of your urine?  If it’s not pale yellow, you’re not drinking enough water!

Can prescription or over-the-counter medications hurt you? I read about a study reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association where, in one year alone, over 105,000 deaths were reported as being due to the adverse side effects of prescription medicines.  Therefore, when taking any medication, one should take the smallest effective dose (as prescribed by your doctor).  And if you’re self-prescribing aspirin for its ability to decrease the likelihood of having a heart attack (you really should discuss this with your doctor first), you should take a baby aspirin daily (81 mg), not the standard 325 mg aspirin. Why? Thousands of people a year die in the U.S. from excessively bleeding stomachs brought on by anti-inflammatories like aspirin! Also, because aspirin thins the blood, its use should be stopped about 2 weeks prior to any surgery.  Ask your doctor about this if you’re having surgery.

I could go on but I’m sure you see my point.  Are you hearing the above from your doctor? There’s just so much information that you need to know to retain or restore your health that it’s just not feasible that your doctor provide most of it.  Recall, physicians are healers, not educators.  Therefore, you need to take responsibility to learn what you and your family and loved ones need to know to remain healthy.

9. GET EFFECTIVE MEDICAL TREATMENT

Dealing with the treatment of medical conditions gets tricky because, unless you’re diligent, it can be mostly outside of your control.  Choose the wrong doctor to treat you, choose the wrong hospital for anything serious, or choose the wrong therapy and a relatively simple medical problem or procedure can become life-threatening.  One of my sisters is a nurse and she told me that she wouldn’t undergo any type of surgery.  Is she just chickenhearted?  No, she’s simply seen too much. When my neurosurgeon performed a laminectomy on my lower back for spinal stenosis, he told me it was low risk. When I told this to my sister she informed me that a patient at her hospital died the day before during a laminectomy because the surgeon accidentally nicked the patient’s aorta during the surgery and the resulting bleeding couldn’t be stopped. So how do you know who’s the right doctor and what’s the right hospital and the right therapy? It’s easier than you might think.

Ask your doctor how many of the surgeries he’s performed.  Same question to the hospital.  The higher the number, the better. You also should ask how many of those surgeries have been successful.  Now for the tough question: what is the right therapy? If you have a serious problem or condition, check the Internet, ask friends and ask your doctor.  Get second and third medical opinions.  Buy the latest books on the subject.  Go to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester if you have to.  In the final analysis, bad things often do happen to good people, but if something bad happens to you, at least you did your best to deal with it and therefore you shouldn’t have recriminations.

10. KEEP UP WITH THE LATEST IN HEALTH, MEDICINE AND NUTRITION

New medical, health and nutrition discoveries are constantly being made and you need to be kept informed if you want to benefit from them because some doctors are too busy to keep up with the latest developments. Therefore, subscribe to some health magazines such as Health and Prevention. As a basic and easy-to-read medical reference, buy a copy of the Merck Manual Home Health Handbook. It’s intended for patients. Physicians have their own version. The Merck Manual is the most respected (by doctors) of all the medical manuals and when your doctor says he needs to consult, he’s sometimes consulting the Merck Manual. A good source of sound advice in the world of alternative/complementary medicine is the Life Extension Foundation. A subscription to it comes with a 1500-page book called, Disease Prevention and Treatment. Its monthly magazine, Life Extension, reports on the latest scientific studies on anything effecting your health and longevity. You can access its website via www.lef.org.

Some very exciting recent news is that it is becoming clear that many chronic illnesses such as cancer, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, diabetes, etc. have inflammation in common. There are a number of things one can do, however, to dramatically decrease inflammation.  One can help control inflammation by taking fish oil supplements, turmeric supplements, extra-virgin olive oil, ginger, Alpha-Linolenic Acid (ALA), Sesame Oil, and Conjugated Linolenic Acid (CLA); doing moderate exercise, and eating a Zone Diet. In addition, it is important to keep your waist under 40 inches if you’re a man, and 35 inches if you’re a woman because abdominal fat is pro-inflammatory.

Another very significant piece of health news is that Pomegranate juice halts and even may reverse Arteriosclerosis (plaque and blockage in arteries) as well as very significantly slows down the progression of prostate cancer.

More and more information is published each year about the importance to your health of powerful antioxidants such as those found in blueberries, pomegranate, dark chocolate, prunes, green tea, etc. (the most colorful fruits and vegetables).

Finally, high-dose Vitamin D is becoming the miraculous discovery of today.  It behaves more like a hormone than a vitamin and research is finding that it can reduce your chances of getting over one hundred diseases, disorders or conditions, but you need to take a sufficient amount, which looks like over twelve times the current 400 International Units (IU) Recommended Daily Allowance or 5,000 IU or more (up to 10,000 IU). How much you need is determined by your skin color, age, time of year, and geographical latitude.

In conclusion, to maintain your health, especially as you age and your immune system weakens, and after years of eating junk food catches up with you, you need to become much more involved in your own health care.  I began my health education in 1978 by reading a book, Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Nutrition But Were Afraid to Ask, by David Reuben, MD.  Today, the medical, health and nutrition part of my personal library numbers over 100 books and I subscribe to a number of health magazines and newsletters as well.  Although I’m in my seventies, I want to maintain my health as long as possible because, especially as one ages, quality of life becomes even more important than longevity.  Your health is much too important to leave up to anyone else, including your doctor.  Of course we need physicians, but we are ultimately responsible for our own health…so don’t try to sue your doctor when s/he tries to level with you to lose weight or stop smoking or whatever.  Learn what you need to know to take proper care of yourself, especially as you get much older.  Your doctor only has the time to tell you a few of the basics; you need to learn a lot more on your own to remain healthy into old age.

**The author is not a physician. 

REFERENCES

Atkins, Robert C., Dr. Atkins’ Vita-Nutrient Solutions, 1998, Fireside, New York, pp.129-130.

Bottom Line Books, Extreme Healing, 2009, Boardroom, Inc., Stamford, CN, p. 378. Carper, Jean, Your Miracle Brain, Harper Collins Publications, New York, 2000, pp. 267, 277-88.

Cherniski, Stephen, DHEA Breakthrough, Ballantine Books, New York, 1998.

Life Extension Foundation, Disease Prevention and Treatment, (3rd ed.), Life Extension Media, Hollywood, FL, 2000.

Merck Manual Home Health Handbook _(Third Home Edition), Merck and Co. Inc, West Point, PA, 2009.

Null, Gary, Ultimate Anti-Aging Program, Broadway Books, New York, 1999, p.252. Physicians Desk Reference (53rd ed.), Medical Econometrics Co., Montvale, N.J., 1999. PDR for Herbal Medicines (2nd ed.), Medical Econometrics Co., Montvale, NJ, 2000.

Reuben, David, Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Nutrition But Were Afraid to Ask, Avon Books, New York, 1978.

Sears, Barry, The Zone, Harper Collins Books, New York, 1995, pp. 65-76.

Sears, Barry, The Anti-Inflammation Zone, Regan Books, New York, 2005. Pp.47-137. Sorenson, Marc, Vitamin D3 and Solar Power for Optimal Health, 2008.

The Complete German Commission E Monographs: Therapeutic Guide to Herbal Medicines, The American Botanical Council, Austin, 1998.

The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy (15th ed.), Merck Sharpe & Dohme Research Laboratories, Rahway, NJ, 1987.

Weil, Andrew, Eating Well for Optimum Health, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 2000

Weil, Andrew, Natural Healing, Natural Medicine (rev. ed.), Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, 1998, pp.150-1.

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