Fresh Cucumber Juice

Move over celery juice there’s a new stallion in town, and he’s also packing vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Ladies and gentlemen, make room in your shopping carts and refrigerators for Mr. Cucumber. These bad boys are literally underrated. What’s so big about celery juice, and who started this trend? According to the New York Times, author Anthony William wrote “Medical Medium Celery Juice: The Most Powerful Medicine of Our Time Healing Millions Worldwide.” In it, he advises readers to drink 16 ounces of organic celery juice each morning on an empty stomach. He claims the celery juice can lead to clearer skin and weight loss, and help eliminate migraines and gout. Of course, these claims are not backed up by science. Plus, celebrities like Pharrell and Beyoncé are swearing by it. If you do your research, cucumbers and celery offer up very similar claims.

Top Cucumber Claims

  • Skin – reduce swelling/inflammation
  • Regulates blood pressure
  • Regulates sugar for diabetes
  • Lowers cholesterol
  • Aids in cancer reduction
  • Detoxes the body
  • Relieves constipation
  • Hydrates body

Top Celery Claims

  • Fights inflammation
  • Suppress arthritis pain
  • Aids in cancer reduction
  • Lowers cholesterol
  • Great for skin
  • Hydrating
  • Detoxes body
  • Aids in digestion

It all really boils down to preference. Both are healthy and have similar health claims. I choose to juice cucumbers because I prefer the taste. To tell you the truth, I’m not a huge fan of celery juice. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy eating celery but only in soups and salads. I’m currently growing cucumbers so I have a great supply to play with. They’re great for juicing because of their high water content and let’s not leave out the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. Cucumbers are also an excellent source of vitamin K and molybdenum. I also enjoy eating them, but juicing will instantly allow my body to absorb all the great nutrients quicker.

Here’s my all time favorite cucumber juice. It’s quick and refreshing. Always choose organic produce.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Large cucumber
  • 1 Granny Smith Apple
  • 1/2 Lime (squeezed)

Here’s another one of my favorite cucumber juice:

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Large cucumber
  • 8 Kale leaves
  • 1 Medium finger length ginger (peeled)
  • 1 Granny Smith Apple

However, if you’re making for two or more people, then double up, triple up, or quadruple up on the ingredients.

Enjoy!

  • Resource:
  • Benefit of Cucumbers
  • 10 Cucumber Health Benefits You Shouldn’t Ignore
  • How to get the health benefits of cucumber
  • Does celery juice have health benefits

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    Fresh Beet Juice Blend

    Here’s a delicious beet juice recipe I created this morning. Sometimes you’ll drink a fresh juice and one ingredient may over power the entire juice. Well, this isn’t one of those juices. The beets and carrots adds the sweetness, then the bitter from the kale and parsley combined with the water from the cucumber, helped to balance out the taste. It came out really smooth. This recipe made two portions. Before juicing, make sure you wash and scrub your vegetables. Always use organic produce, if possible. If not, peeling the outer skin helps to reduce your exposure to pesticides.

    INGREDIENTS

    1. 1 Large beet
    2. 1 lb Carrots
    3. 1/2 Bundle of parsley
    4. 1 Large cucumber
    5. 3 Kale leaves

    enjoy!

    Colorectal Cancer Rises Among Younger Adults

    A colored scanning electron micrograph of a dividing colorectal cancer cell. Credit Steve Gschmeissner/Science Source

    Colorectal cancer is typically considered a disease of aging — most new cases are diagnosed in people over age 50. But even as the rates decrease in older adults, scientists have documented a worrisome trend in the opposite direction among patients in their 20s and 30s. Now, data from national cancer registries in Canada add to the evidence that colorectal cancer rates are rising in younger adults. The increases may even be accelerating.

    “We thought that this trend would slow down or level off after people first noticed it a few years ago,” said Darren Brenner, a molecular cancer epidemiologist at the University of Calgary and lead author of the new study, published on Wednesday in the journal JAMA Network Open. “But every year we keep seeing the increase in colorectal cancer among young people, and it is very alarming.” Between 2006 and 2015, the last year for which figures are available, colorectal cancer rates increased by 3.47 percent among Canadian men under age 50, Dr. Brenner and his colleagues found. And from 2010 to 2015, rates increased by 4.45 percent among women under age 50. Yet colon and rectal cancers have been steadily decreasing among older adults in Canada because of increased awareness of the disease and widespread use of screening tests like colonoscopies, which can identify and remove colon polyps before cancer develops.

    The pattern is quite similar to that observed by researchers in the United States. Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin reported last week that the proportion of newly diagnosed colorectal patients under age 50 rose from 10 percent in 2004 to 12.2 percent in 2015. Younger patients were also likely to have advanced cases more often than older patients. Over all, the risk of colorectal cancer is still much lower in younger adults than in older ones. But the continuing uptick means that millennials will most likely carry an elevated risk as they get older.

    “They’ll carry that risk with them, so that they have a much higher risk than their parents when they reach their 50s and 60s,” said Rebecca Siegel, an epidemiologist at the American Cancer Society. Recent lifestyle changes may be partly to blame. Obesity and sedentary lifestyles, for example, are linked to colorectal cancer, as are poor diets low in fiber. Patients with chronic inflammation or Type 2 diabetes have also been found to be at increased risk for the disease. But experts are not entirely convinced these are the only factors at work. Trends in obesity among people of different ethnic and racial backgrounds don’t always correspond to an increase in colorectal cancer, according to Ms. Siegel.

    Some studies have found that obesity brings increased risk of colon cancer, while others, including the new JAMA research, have found a greater increase in cancers of the rectum. Until there is more research into what is causing the increase in colorectal cancers, Ms. Siegel encourages younger people to be more proactive about identifying signs early on. Persistent constipation, cramps, bloating, blood in stool, unexplained weight loss and fatigue can all be symptoms. Younger people and their doctors often overlook the warning signs because “cancer is not on their radar,” Ms. Siegel said.

    The American Cancer Society now recommends screening average-risk individuals for colorectal cancer starting at age 45. Researchers in Canada also are considering changes to screening recommendations. But these revisions are unlikely to help prevent cancers among patients who are even younger. “We need to understand why this trend is occurring in young people in order to prevent it,” Dr. Brenner said.

    By: Knvul Sheikh

    10 Sitting Exercises for the Workplace

    desk-sitting

     

     

    10 Sitting Exercises for Anti-Aging Fitness

    1. Sit tall with a neutral spine (small curve in your middle back, hips level).
    2. Legs spaced comfortably at a 90-degree angle and in alignment with hips.
    3. Feet pointed straight ahead, aligned with knees.
    4. Button navel to spine, reducing pressure on your back.
    5. Place a 4-inch foam ball between your knees to help you maintain position without having to think about it. Squeeze the ball with your inner thigh muscles from time to time to strengthen them and improve circulation.
    6. Keep your shoulders low and relaxed with a wide collarbone. Slide your shoulder blades down from time to time, exhaling as you do so. Be sure you don’t pinch your shoulder blades together. This exercise is extremely important for avoiding carpal tunnel syndrome and neck strain.
    7. Keep your computer keyboard at elbow level; comfortable for arms and wrists — also important for reducing stress to elbows and wrists.
    8. Alternate stretching your neck by looking and then tuck your chin into your chest.
    9. Concentrate on making your neck as long as possible.
    10. Keep a workout band in your desk to use for stretching, strengthening and improving circulation.
    11. Get up from your chair frequently and take a walk around the office. Take the stairs for going between floors whenever possible.

     

    – Adapted from “The Anti-Aging Solution” by Vincent Giampapa, M.D., Ronald Pero, Ph.D., Marcia Zimmerman, C.N. Foreword by Nicholas Perricone, M.D. Wiley, March 2004.

    Did You Know, Poultry is a Cause? Urinary Tract Infections Affect Millions. The Cures Are Faltering.

    Dr. Lee Riley of the University of California, Berkeley, has been studying antibiotic-resistant strains of E. coli, which can cause urinary tract infections. “We’ve suspected maybe some of these U.T.I. cases may be food-borne,” he said. Credit Brian L. Frank for The New York Times

    For generations, urinary tract infections, one of the world’s most common ailments, have been easily and quickly cured with a simple course of antibiotics. But there is growing evidence that the infections, which afflict millions of Americans a year, mostly women, are increasingly resistant to these medicines, turning a once-routine diagnosis into one that is leading to more hospitalizations, graver illnesses and prolonged discomfort from the excruciating burning sensation that the infection brings.

    The New York City Department of Health has become so concerned about drug-resistant U.T.I.s, as they are widely known, that it introduced a new mobile phone app this month that gives doctors and nurses access to a list of strains of urinary tract infections and which drugs they are resistant to. The department’s research found that a third of uncomplicated urinary tract infections caused by E. coli — the most common type now — were resistant to Bactrim, one of the most widely used drugs, and at least one fifth of them were resistant to five other common treatments. “This is crazy. This is shocking,” said Lance Price, director of the Antibiotic Resistance Action Center at George Washington University, who was not involved in the research. 

    The drug ampicillin, once a mainstay for treating the infections, has been abandoned as a gold standard because multiple strains of U.T.I.s are resistant to it. Some urinary tract infections now require treatment with heavy-duty intravenous antibiotics. Researchers last year reported in a study that a third of all U.T.I.s in Britain are resistant to “key antibiotics.” Certainly, the day-to-day experience of having a U.T.I. is growing less routine for many women. Carolina Barcelos, 38, a postdoctoral researcher in Berkeley, Calif., said she had several U.T.I.s as a teenager, all successfully treated with Bactrim. When she got one in February, her doctor also prescribed Bactrim, but this time it didn’t work.

    Four days later, she returned and got a new prescription, for a drug called nitrofurantoin. It didn’t work either. Her pain worsened, and several days later, there was blood in her urine. Her doctor prescribed a third drug, ciproflaxacin, the last of the three major front-line medicines, and cultured her urine. The culture showed her infection was susceptible to the new drug, but not the other two. “Next time,” Dr. Barcelos said, “I’m going to ask them to do a culture right away. For eight days I was taking antibiotics that weren’t working for me.” Usually, it is people with weakened immune systems or chronic medical conditions who are most vulnerable to drug-resistant infections, but U.T.I.s have a dubious distinction: They are the single biggest risk to healthy people from drug-resistant germs.

    Resistance to antibiotics has become one of the world’s most pressing health issues. Overuse of the drugs in humans and livestock has caused germs to develop defenses to survive, rendering a growing number of medicines ineffective in treating a wide range of illnesses — a phenomenon that is playing out worldwide with U.T.I.s.

    The World Health Organization, while noting that data on urinary tract infections and drug resistance is “scarce,” said the fact the infections were so common strongly suggested that increasing resistance would lead to more severe illnesses and fatalities. The solution, researchers and clinicians say, includes a continued push for more judicious use of antibiotics worldwide. But more immediately, a partial solution would be the development of quick, cheap diagnostic tools that would allow an instant urine culture so that a doctor could prescribe the right drug for U.T.I.s.

    Carolina Barcelos had a urinary tract infection earlier this year. Neither of the first two drugs she took helped. “For eight days I was taking antibiotics that weren’t working for me,” she said. Credit Brian L. Frank for The New York Times

    But whether to wait the several days it usually takes to get lab results before prescribing presents a tough dilemma for doctors and patients, who frequently are desperate for relief. Plus, depending on a person’s insurance, getting a culture can be expensive. Generally doctors still do not order a urine culture before prescribing an antibiotic.

    “In the old days, the list of antibiotic options was short but by and large they would all work,” said Dr. James Johnson, an infectious disease professor and leading researcher on urinary tract infections at the University of Minnesota. Some women have U.T.I.s that the body fights off on its own without using antibiotics, while other women may have a different low-level ailment that feels like a U.T.I., but isn’t. The safest course is to see a doctor and make an informed decision that includes a judicious determination of whether antibiotics are warranted. The science does not support the efficacy of some popular remedies like cranberry juice or cranberry pills.

    Officials from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that U.T.I.s acquired by otherwise healthy people were a growing concern and one poorly studied. They are not tracked nationally. In older people, urinary tract infections can be deadly, but tracking in the United States is so weak that there are no reliable estimates on the numbers of deaths related to the infections. The C.D.C. published an estimate of 13,000 per year, but that figure comes from a paper looking at 2002 data and refers only to U.T.I.s acquired in hospitals. Dr. Clifford McDonald, associate director for science in the division of health care quality promotion at the C.D.C., said the government planned to expand its research.

    “If we don’t do something soon,” Dr. McDonald said, “it’s going to push all our treatments to more advanced antibiotics that finally put a lot of pressure on the last-line treatments.”

    What makes these infections so dangerous, and commonplace, is human anatomy. In women, the urethra — the gateway to the urinary tract — is in proximity to the rectum. This can lead to easy transfer of bacteria in fecal residue that otherwise resides harmlessly in the gut. 

    In reproductive years, women are 50 times for likely than men to have a urinary tract infection; later in life, the ratio drops to 2 to 1, as men wind up having surgical procedures on their prostate, or catheters, that more easily expose their urinary tracts to infection.

    There are multiple germs that cause U.T.I.s, and their resistance levels to drugs vary both by strain and by where a patient lives. By far the most common cause of U.T.I.s today is E. coli, and, in general, those infections have seen sharp rises in resistance to gold standard treatments over the past decade and a half.

    Dr. Eva Raphael, a primary care physician at San Francisco General Hospital, said one of her patients returned to the emergency room after a drug-resistant U.T.I. spread to her kidney. “It makes me wonder what the world looked like for women before antibiotics, and wonder if we’re going to see that now,” she said. Credit Brian L. Frank for The New York Times

    New research shows that one crucial path of transfer of germs that cause U.T.I.s is food, most often poultry. The consumed poultry winds up in a person’s gut and can get transferred through fecal residue to the urethra.

    A study published last year by the American Society of Microbiology, funded partly by the C.D.C., found 12 strains of E. coli in poultry that matched widely circulating urinary tract infection strains. One of the study’s authors, Dr. Lee Riley, a professor of epidemiology and infectious diseases at the University of California, Berkeley, said he was working on a C.D.C.-funded project to determine whether the urinary tract infection needs to be classified and reported as a food-borne illness.

    Dr. Brad Frazee, an emergency room doctor at Highland Hospital in Oakland, Calif., has been a co-author of research that adds another troubling wrinkle: Increasingly, E. coli is proving resistant not just to individual antibiotics, but also to a broad group of drugs known as beta-lactam antibiotics. These drugs share a way of attacking infection, and when a germ develops resistance to this method of attack, it eliminates several key treatment options all at once.

    Recently, a woman carrying such resistance showed up at Dr. Frazee’s hospital, he said. She wound up with pyelonephritis, an infection in the kidney, and had to be treated in the hospital intravenously with a drug called ertapenem that can cost $1,000 a dose. A study found that around 5 percent of U.T.I.s at the hospital carried this resistance. 

    Doctors are now confronting cases of resistant urinary tract infections in their practices. Dr. Eva Raphael, a primary care physician in San Francisco, recently received notice that one of her patients, a healthy woman in her mid-30s, was back in the emergency room with another U.T.I. that was resistant to multiple antibiotics.

    One of her prior U.T.I.s had failed to respond to two commonly used treatments and had spread to her kidney, requiring hospitalization to receive intravenous antibiotics. This time Dr. Raphael consulted with infectious disease specialists. “It can be quite dangerous in this age where there is more and more resistance,” she said, noting that without effective treatment the infection can get into the blood. “It can be fatal.”

    Urinary Tract Infections Affect Millions. The Cures Are Faltering.
    — Read on www.google.com/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/2019/07/13/health/urinary-infections-drug-resistant.amp.html

    Why Some Dairy Products are More Closely Linked to Parkinson’s Disease

    Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

    Parkinson’s is the second most common neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer’s. Each year in the United States, approximately 60,000 new cases are diagnosed, bringing the total number of current cases up to about a million, with tens of thousands of people dying from the disease every year. The dietary component most often implicated is milk, as I discuss in my video Could Lactose Explain the Milk and Parkinson’s Disease Link?, and contamination of milk by neurotoxins has been considered the “only possible explanation.” High levels of organochlorine pesticide residues have been found in milk, as well as in the most affected areas in the brains of Parkinson’s victims on autopsy. Pesticides in milk have been found around the world, so perhaps the dairy industry should require toxin screenings of milk. In fact, inexpensive, sensitive, portable tests are now available with no false positives and no false negatives, providing rapid detection of highly toxic pesticides in milk. Now, we just have to convince the dairy industry to actually do it.

    Others are not as convinced of the pesticide link. “Despite clear-cut associations between milk intake and PD [Parkinson’s disease] incidence, there is no rational explanation for milk being a risk factor for PD.” If it were the pesticides present in milk that could accumulate in the brain, we would assume that the pesticides would build up in the fat. However, the link between skimmed milk and Parkinson’s is just as strong. So, researchers have suggested reverse causation: The milk didn’t cause Parkinson’s; the Parkinson’s caused the milk. Parkinson’s makes some people depressed, they reasoned, and depressed people may drink more milk. As such, they suggested we shouldn’t limit dairy intake for people with Parkinson’s, especially because they are so susceptible to hip fractures. But we now know that milk doesn’t appear to protect against hip fractures after all and may actually increase the risk of both bone fractures and death. (For more on this, see my video Is Milk Good for Our Bones?.) Ironically, this may offer a clue as to what’s going on in Parkinson’s, but first, let’s look at this reverse causation argument: Did milk lead to Parkinson’s, or did Parkinson’s lead to milk?

    What are needed are prospective cohort studies in which milk consumption is measured first and people are followed over time, and such studies still found a significant increase in risk associated with dairy intake. The risk increased by 17 percent for every small glass of milk a day and 13 percent for every daily half slice of cheese. Again, the standard explanation is that the risk is from all the pesticides and other neurotoxins in dairy, but that doesn’t explain why there’s more risk attached to some dairy products than others. Pesticide residues are found in all dairy products, so why should milk be associated with Parkinson’s more than cheese is? Besides the pesticides themselves, there are other neurotoxic contaminants in milk, like tetrahydroisoquinolines, found in the brains of people with Parkinson’s disease, but there are higher levels of these in cheese than in milk, though people may drink more milk than eat cheese.

    The relationship between dairy and Huntington’s disease appears similar. Huntington’s is a horrible degenerative brain disease that runs in families and whose early onset may be doubled by dairy consumption, but again, this may be more milk consumption than cheese consumption, which brings us back to the clue in the more-milk-more-mortality study.

    Anytime we hear disease risks associated with more milk than cheese—more oxidative stress and inflammation—we should think galactose, the milk sugar rather than the milk fat, protein, or pesticides. That’s why we think milk drinkers specifically appeared to have a higher risk of bone fractures and death, which may explain the neurodegeneration findings, too. Not only do rare individuals with an inability to detoxify the galactose found in milk suffer damage to their bones, but they also exhibit damage to their brains.


    Other than avoiding dairy products, what can we do to reduce our risk of Parkinson’s? See Is Something in Tobacco Protective Against Parkinson’s Disease?and Peppers and Parkinson’s: The Benefits of Smoking Without the Risks?.

    You may also be interested in my videos Treating Parkinson’s Disease with Dietand Parkinson’s Disease and the Uric Acid Sweet Spot.

    For the effect of foods on another neurodegenerative disease that affects our ability to move normally, see ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease): Fishing for Answersand Diet and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

    Written By 

    In health,
    Michael Greger, M.D.

    PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations:

    Plant-based Ground Beef

    Here’s a great alternative to ground beef. Let me introduce you to Beyond Beef. A Plant-based version of real beef. All the ingredients are made from plants. It’s also soy-free and gluten-free. As you can see, it’s Non-GMO Project Verified, which basically means this product was not made with any genetically modified organisms. The ingredients are pure, just as Mother Nature intended them to be.

    Take a look at the ingredients below. There are no meat byproducts, soy, or artificial preservatives.

    INGREDIENTS:

    Water, Pea Protein Isolate*, Expeller-pressed Canola Oil, Refined Coconut Oil, Rice Protein, Natural Flavors, Cocoa Butter, Mung Bean Protein, Methylcellulose, Potato Starch, Apple Extract, Salt, Potassium Chloride, Vinegar, Lemon Juice Concentrate, Sunflower Lecithin, Pomegranate Fruite Powder, Beet Juice Extract (For Color).

    All plants ingredients! Where can you buy this and many other plant-based foods? Whole Foods Market! Plus, it’s just in time for the July 4th holiday. Get your grills out and grill up some plant-based burgers or make the family a nice meatless meatball and spaghetti dinner. They won’t know the difference.

    Be safe and healthy, and have a Happy 4th of July.

    Commonly prescribed drugs are tied to nearly 50% higher dementia risk in older adults

    (CNN) – Scientists have long found a possible link between anticholinergic drugs and an increased risk of dementia.

    A study published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine on Monday suggests that the link is strongest for certain classes of anticholinergic drugs — particularly antidepressants such as paroxetine or amitriptyline, bladder antimuscarinics such as oxybutynin or tolterodine, antipsychotics such as chlorpromazine or olanzapine and antiepileptic drugs such as oxcarbazepine or carbamazepine.

    Researchers wrote in the study that “there was nearly a 50% increased odds of dementia” associated with a total anticholinergic exposure of more than 1,095 daily doses within a 10-year period, which is equivalent to an older adult taking a strong anticholinergic medication daily for at least three years, compared with no exposure.

    “The study is important because it strengthens a growing body of evidence showing that strong anticholinergic drugs have long term associations with dementia risk,” said Carol Coupland, professor of medical statistics in primary care at the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom and first author of the study.

    “It also highlights which types of anticholinergic drugs have the strongest associations. This is important information for physicians to know when considering whether to prescribe these drugs,” she said, adding “this is an observational study so no firm conclusions can be drawn about whether these anticholinergic drugs cause dementia.”

    She said that people taking these medications are advised not to stop them without consulting with their doctor first, as that could be harmful. The study involved analyzing data on 284,343 adults in the United Kingdom, aged 55 and older, between 2004 and 2016. The data came from QResearch, a large database of anonymized health records.

    The researchers identified each adult’s anticholinergic exposure based on details of their prescriptions. The researchers found the most frequently prescribed anticholinergic drugs were antidepressants, drugs to treat vertigo, motion sickness or vomiting and bladder antimuscarinic drugs, such as to treat overactive bladder. The researchers also took a close look at who was diagnosed with dementia and found that 58,769 of the patients had a dementia diagnosis.

    The researchers found no significant increases in dementia risk associated with antihistamines, skeletal muscle relaxants, gastrointestinal antispasmodics, antiarrhythmics, or antimuscarinic bronchodilators, according to the data, but associations were found among other classes of anticholinergic drugs. The researchers found that the odds of dementia increased from 1.06 among those with the lowest anticholinergic exposure to 1.49 among those with the highest exposure, compared with having no prescriptions for anticholinergic drugs.

    The study had some limitations, including that some patients may not have taken their prescribed medication as directed, so anticholinergic exposure levels could have been misclassified. The researchers found only an association between anticholinergic drugs and dementia risk, not a causal relationship.

    “However, if this association is causal, the population-attributable fractions indicate that around 10% of dementia diagnoses are attributable to anticholinergic drug exposure, which would equate, for example, to around 20,000 of the 209,600 new cases of dementia per year in the United Kingdom,” the researchers wrote in the study.Since the study shows only an association, more research is needed to “clarify whether anticholinergic medications truly represent a reversible risk factor” for dementia, wrote experts Noll Campbell, Richard Holden and Dr. Malaz Boustani in an editorial that published alongside the new study in JAMA Internal Medicine.

    “Additionally, deprescribing trials can evaluate potential harms of stopping anticholinergic medications, such as worsening symptoms of depression, incontinence, or pain, as well as the potential unintended increase in acute health care utilization,” Campbell, Holden and Boustani wrote in the editorial.”With little evidence of causation, the next steps for research on anticholinergic medications in older adults must improve knowledge of the effect of deprescribing interventions on cognitive outcomes and important safety outcomes such as symptom control, quality of life, and health care utilization,” they wrote. “We propose deprescribing research as a high priority.”

    It has been well known that anticholinergic agents and confusion or memory issues are linked, but the new study investigated this association over a long period of time, said Dr. Douglas Scharre, director of the division of cognitive neurology at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus, who was not involved in the study.

    He encouraged any patients who might have questions about this association to talk to their physicians. “I spend a lot of my time in the memory disorder clinic seeing geriatric patients and taking people off medications, mostly ones that have anticholinergic properties, and many times there can be another drug out there that has less anticholinergic impact or is non-anticholinergic that may work,” Scharre said.

    “Some of the medications that they list in the study may be quite critical and important and are well worth the person taking for their seizures or their psychosis, and so it’s a risk-benefit discussion,” he added. “So have a conversation with your doctor.”

    E-Cigarette Exploded in a Teenager’s Mouth, Damaging His Jaw

    The Food and Drug Administration does not tally the number of e-cigarette explosions. Credit Steve Helber/Associated Press

    Kailani Burton bought a vaping kit for her teenage son Austin, hoping he would use it to quit smoking.

    In March of last year, she and her husband were sitting in the living room when they heard a loud pop.

    Austin raced in, holding his bloodied jaw. An e-cigarette had exploded in his mouth.

    “He was bleeding really bad,” Ms. Burton said in an interview. “It looked like a hole in his chin.”

    Ms. Burton and her family rushed Austin, then 17 and still in high school, to the hospital in Ely, Nev., a remote mountain town. But realizing quickly that he needed treatment at a trauma center, they then drove the 200-mile, mountainous trek from eastern Nevada to Salt Lake City, arriving about 1:30 a.m. “I was so worried driving. I almost hit a wild horse,” Ms. Burton said.

    Dr. Katie W. Russell, a pediatric surgeon at the University of Utah, and Dr. Micah Katz, a resident, part of the team who treated Austin, submitted the case, which was published on Wednesday, to The New England Journal of Medicine in an effort to warn the public about the dangers of vaping.

    “I had no idea that these vape pens could blow up and cause serious injury,” said Dr. Russell, director of the trauma center at the Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City.

    “This technology hit the market by storm and people are not aware,” she added. “But the fact is they can burn you. They can explode in your pocket. They can explode in your face. I think there’s a health concern.”

    Dr. Russell said that Austin told her he saw a big flash, felt terrible pain in his lower jaw and quickly pulled the device out of his mouth. He had a major fracture of his lower jaw, including about a 2-centimeter piece that had exploded and was missing, and he was also missing multiple teeth. The surgeons had to put a plate under his gum. Dr. Russell said that she believed the injury was caused by an exploding battery but that she was not certain.

    The family said Austin had been using a VGOD product. VGOD sells a range of vaping devices and liquid nicotine flavors, including Mango Bomb, Berry Bomb and Apple Bomb. VGOD markets its products to customers seeking a large vaping cloud, and promotes what it calls “tricking,” creating rings and unusual shapes with the smoky vapor.

    A reconstructed computed tomography showing the injuries suffered by a teenager when an e-cigarette exploded in his mouth. Credit Primary Children’s Hospital

    The Food and Drug Administration has expressed concern about e-cigarette and other vaping device injuries from overheating and exploding batteries. It is also exploring product standards to reduce battery problems. The agency does not tally the number of e-cigarette explosions or other mishaps.

    On a web page offering tips to reduce such hazards, the agency wrote, “You may have heard that e-cigarettes, or ‘vapes,’ can explode and seriously injure people. Although they appear rare, these explosions are dangerous.”

    A report in BMJ last year, using data from several federal agencies, found there were roughly 2,035 e-cigarette explosion and burn injuries in the United States from 2015 to 2017.

    The authors, led by Dr. Matthew E. Rossheim of George Mason University, said the number was most likely higher because accidents were not thoroughly tracked. The report also said that e-cigarettes, commonly powered by a lithium-ion battery, could overheat to the point of catching fire or exploding, a phenomenon known as thermal runaway. This can be caused by product defects, or by a short circuit of the battery, when they are in contact with metal objects — for example, keys or coins, the authors said. The researchers also noted at least one death from an e-cigarette explosion and suggested the F.D.A. improve its monitoring of these injuries.

    A July 2017 report from the Federal Emergency Management Agency said that from January 2009 through December 2016, there were 195 reports of explosions involving e-cigarettes, 38 of which caused severe injuries. The report called the combination of an electronic cigarette and a lithium-ion battery a new and unique hazard.

    “It is clear that these batteries are not a safe source of energy for these devices,” the agency said.

    A blog post by the Massachusetts General Research Institute says that open systems — which use rechargeable batteries with reservoirs that can be filled with e-liquid — are generally less safe than closed systems, which use pre-filled, disposable cartridges that attach to a rechargeable battery, or single-use products that cannot be recharged.

    “The closed-system e-cigarette, while generally safer, serves as a starter product that paves the way for the use of a more risky, unregulated open-system e-cigarette,” the institute wrote last fall.

    In an interview, Ms. Burton said Austin recently graduated from high school and was doing well. She said that she regretted buying the vaping device, but that Austin had quit vaping altogether even if his friends had not.

    “I just want people to know that it can be dangerous,” she said. “I bought it for him. I should have protected him.

    Resource: New York Times

    What I’m Reading Now?

    I’m journeying on a new path to learn how to meditate. I need to bring calm, stillness, and peacefulness to my mind. I’ve heard and read about the many amazing benefits on practicing meditation, and I’m at the right stage in my life where I need it the most. With a full time career, three children, husband, and a dog; it’s a time much needed. I chose The Headspace Guide to Meditation and Mindfulness by Andy Puddicombe to kick start my journey because it came highly recommended by Bill Gates. No, I don’t know him personally, although I wish! I follow his blog, gatesnotes. If you don’t, you should. He’s brilliant, Google him. Bill is the reason why I researched Andy in the first place. Andy is 47 with many years of training in monasteries in India, Nepal, Myanmar, Thailand, Australia, Russia, and Scotland. He’s even an ordained Buddhist monk.

    Andy’s approach to meditation is clear and easy to understand. He teaches amazing techniques, and they’re easy to apply to your everyday busy lifestyle. Andy also believes all you need is 10 minutes a day. Obviously, if you have the ability and time to meditate longer, by all means meditate. When you think of 10 minutes, it’s actually not that long; however, it’s hard for the average person to sit still with a clear mind. More importantly, the practice of meditation is about much more than simply sitting down for a set period of time each day. Andy says, “it’s about training in awareness and understanding how and why you think and feel the way you do, and getting a healthy sense of perspective in the process.” His book also looks deeper in the differences between understanding mindfulness and headspace. He even have an app called, Headspace available on IOS. I haven’t downloaded it yet, but I intend to. Let’s take a look at mindfulness, Andy explains it as the temptation to judge whatever emotion that comes up, and therefore neither opposing or getting carried away with a feeling. And headspace is the result of applying this approach. Headspace delivers a sense of ease with whatever emotion is present.

    How many times you’ve been in a situation where someone pissed you off? It angers you, and you feel like you just want to explode. Then you move through your day retelling that scenario over and over to everyone you possibly can share it with. Instead of moving forward productively with your day, you dwell and relive that situation over and over again transferring that negative energy to your friends, love ones, and even into your workplace. This behavior is toxic and becomes debilitating to your mind, body and soul. Who wants to go through life this way? Surely not me! Knowing how to let go and release these toxic thoughts and energy is my goal.

    Andy’s book offers four steps to help you achieve meditation. His Take10 summary is recommended to follow each and every time before you meditate.

    1. Getting Ready
    2. Checking-in
    3. Focusing the mind
    4. Finishing-off

    The book explains in detail what you need to do in each step to get your mind and body ready. I’m almost midway finish reading the book. I feel more confident than ever. This book has already taught me about the layers of my thoughts, dealing with my emotions, and how to tackle each one as they come to mind. I’ve re-read many chapters and made side notes. It’s definitely a page turner. If you’re interested in learning how to meditate, this book may help you. I would love to hear about your journey or any suggestions on meditation.