Wednesday, June 22, 2011

CyberSmog: EMF's (Electromagnetic Fields) Our Hidden Health Risk

CyberSmog: EMFs “A Hidden Health Risk”
CyberSmog?  What is CyberSmog? I thought the same thing when I first learned about this but soon I was eager to learn more.
I would like to begin by expressing my utmost gratitude for living in a country with so many daily conveniences. I am grateful for all those pioneers who have made our lives so much simpler by providing us with these conveniences with only the flip a switch, turn a knob, click a button The time saving inventions that our country has been notorious for have made us all “gadget consumers”.  The incredible cell phones, laptops, IPads, IPods, ITouch, wireless networks, better cell phone coverage have all made our lives more interesting, more fun and more portable.
All this convenience comes at a cost to us though.   A cost that many of us may not even be aware of.
My hope is that I will educate you about something that you may have never even thought about.  I hope we will all become inspired to learn more about this topic and put a plan in place to better protect ourselves from this hidden threat to our wellness.
There is something that is constantly affecting our health and the health of those we live and work with every single day.  I am referring to the invisible sea of Electromagnetic Fields or EMFs we call “CyberSmog”.
Let’s begin by understanding what exactly is meant by an EMF.  Electromagnetic fields are areas of energy that surround electronic devices.  EMFs affect us because our human bodies have their own electric & biochemical responses (nervous system, digestion, brain function, heart function).  So exposure to EMFs can interact with our body in adverse ways. 
EMFs come from electricity in our home, our offices and our outside environment.  If we are serious about achieving and maintaining our best health, there are several steps we can take to minimize the effects EMFs have on us and our families.  If our immunity is already low, then eliminating EMFs are even more important since EMFs can make it harder to recover from illness.
If we are feeling well already, EMFs can cause annoying symptoms like insomnia and headaches.  The potential for interference in our bodies varies from person to person as “free radicals” form in and around our bodies. 
Free radicals are atoms that are missing an electron in their outer ring making the atom unstable.  These positively charged inflammatory free radicals create a so-called scavenger hunt throughout the body searching for another cell that will donate an electron.  This electron deficiency created by a lack of grounding is what is created everytime we are exposed to EMFs.
Some individuals are “electrically hypersensitive” and can manifest symptoms of overstimulation.
Our bodies can become “ungrounded” and seemingly float in a tempest of random environmental energies.  We operate unstably, like a leaf blowing in the wind.
I hope by now you can begin to understand what the big deal is about this problem of Cybersmog.  A little history here may help us to understand why we don’t hear much about this in our public media, although this past weeks’ Time magazine did have an article in the Health & Science section regarding cell-phone emissions known to change brain activity. 
Let’s think about this tough question.
Can EMFs from power lines, home wiring, airport and military radar, substations, transformers, computers and appliances cause brain tumors, leukemia, birth defects, miscarriages, chronic fatigue, headaches, cataracts, heart problems, stress, nausea, chest pain, forgetfulness, cancer and other health problems?
Numerous studies have produced contradictory results, yet some experts are convinced that the threat is real.
Dr. David Carpenter, Dean at the School of Public Health, State University of New York believes it is likely that up to 30% of all childhood cancers come from exposure to EMFs.  The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) warns us that “There is reason for concern and advises prudent avoidance.”
As far back as 1989 the Department of Energy reported that “It has now become generally accepted that there are, indeed, biological effects due to field exposure.”
Soon power line radiation will be as well known to us as asbestos and radon and the homes with high energy fields will be barely impossible to sell.
After at least two dozen epidemiological studies on humans indicated a link between EMFs and serious health problems, the EPA recommended that EMFs be classified as a Class B carcinogen, “a probable known carcinogen & joined the ranks of formaldehyde, DDT, dioxins and PCBs.”
After much political pressure by utility, military and computer lobbyists, the EPA revised their report to suggest that electrical power frequency exposures, show a consistent pattern of response in the development of leukemia, lymphoma, and cancers of the nervous system in both children and adults.
How do we know when we are being exposed to dangerous levels of EMFs?  We can measure them with a Gauss meter, an instrument that measures the strength of magnetic fields.  They can be purchased for home, office or industrial use.  Measurements under 1 mG are desirable but many of us live and work around measurements that are much, much higher than that.
One can buy a personal EMF alarm that can be purchased for around $200 that is perfect for someone who wears a pacemaker or cardiac defibrillator. 
So where are these EMFs coming from? 
Well the most obvious may be those high tension power lines we see while driving along the roadways. 
Or the transformers and substations we have on our electrical poles outside of our homes or neighborhoods. 
The electrical power grid is a matrix of underground wires, cables and above ground circuitry that many of us ignore unless of course we have a power outage after a thunderstorm or ice storm. 
How about the less obvious exposures we are all getting everyday.
Home wiring can create high EMFs if not properly installed.  It is best to make the room where the electricity enters our home into a utility or storage area, rather than a living space.  There are many EMFs protectors and shields that are available to lessen our exposure from extension cords, wall outlets and home wiring leaks.
Computers of any kind emit EMFs from all sides so exposure not only occurs when we are sitting in front of the monitor but also if we are sitting near a computer or one operating in another room nearby.  How many of us have laptop computers, or use our cell phones as computers.
TVs, surround sound, wireless modems, WiFi cafes, Bluetooth devices, printers, scanners are all sources of EMF exposure.  Cell phone towers are cropping up in even the most remote areas as the phone companies all brag about having the best cell phone coverage. 
We’ve got you covered with our 3G network.  The more towers, the more EMFs circulating in our environment. 
My daughter Justine complains that she cannot get good cell phone coverage from inside of our house due to our metal roof.  I can see that this is not such a bad thing after all.
Home or office wireless telephones/answering machines with a base emit large amounts of EMFs.  The handset that we hold up close to our heads and the base which contains a mini-transformer emit the most dangerous levels of EMFs.
Electric blankets create a magnetic field that penetrates 6-7 inches into the body and has been linked to miscarriages & childhood leukemia.  I grew up in Massachusetts and our upstairs bedrooms were not heated.  I bet I slept underneath of an electric blanket for at least 12-15 years.  Two of my four pregnancies ended in miscarriage.  Hmmm, interesting to think about.
Waterbeds and waterbed heaters emit EMFs even when turned off.  Devices must be unplugged to delete the EMF exposure.
Electric clocks have a very high magnetic field.  If we are using a bedside clock, it is estimated that we are sleeping in an EMF equivalent to a power line.  For this reason is it wise to place all clocks & other electrical devices such as reading lights, night lights, telephones and answering machines at least 6 feet from our beds.
Baby monitors, both the base and the portable unit emit high levels of EMFs.  Where do we usually place these devices?  Close to our babies cribs and close to our own beds.  I used to sleep with my baby monitor underneath my pillow so I would be sure to hear the baby if she needed me.
Microwave ovens & radar from military installations or airports emit two different types of radiation.  All microwave ovens emit EMF which is why we are told never to stand close to a microwave while it is in use.  Public places are required to post a sign that reads CAUTION, microwave in use to alert those people who wear pacemakers or defibrillators.  Airport body scanners are another large source of EMF exposure.  Think of all the airline personnel or frequent flyers exposed on a daily basis, over and over again.
Electric razors, toothbrushes and hair dryers can emit EMFs as high as 200-400mG.  Remember the acceptable level of EMF exposure was less than 1mG.  Some EMF consultants recommend that hair dryers not be used on children as high fields are held close to their rapidly developing brain & nervous system. 
Experts cannot agree on which is worse, shaving and drying your hair 5 minutes per day at 200-400 mG or chronic exposure for many hours at 2-3mG field.  Think about all the hairdressers and cosmetologists who are constantly bombarded with this EMF exposure!
As we can see, electricity is everywhere in our everyday world which means EMFs will continue to be all around us.
Most experts do agree that limited, non-chronic exposure to EMFs is not a threat.  It is probably acceptable for a person to be near a toaster in the morning.
It is not advisable for a person to sleep under an electric blanket or on a heated waterbed, live up close or near a powerline/substation, sleep in a room where the power enters the home.
This person is under an extreme case of chronic exposure.  This condition unfortunately applies to millions of Americans.
What can we do to protect ourselves?
Measure our home, work and school environment with a Gauss meter.  Measure both inside and outside our homes.
Be sure the field is around 0.5mG but not above 1mG.  Don’t allow our children or grandchildren to knowingly play near power lines, transformers, radar domes or microwave towers.  Avoid areas where the field is above 1mG.
Measure EMFs from appliances both when they are operating and when they are turned off.  TVs still draw current even when they are turned off.
Distance ourselves at least 6 feet away from the TV.  I always thought my Mom was worried about my eyes from sitting too close to the TV when I was small.
Rearrange office and home area so that we are not exposed to EMFs from the sides or backs of electric appliances & computers.
Place all major appliances such as refrigerators, TVs, computers against outside walls as EMF fields can be created in adjoining rooms.
Avoid extension cords or nightlights to be plugged in under or around our beds.
Unplug any electrical device when not in use.  It is not enough just to turn it off as EMF can still emit.
Be wary of cordless razors, toothbrushes or phones.
Even wearing a quartz analog watch on our wrist emits pulsating EMFs along our acupuncture meridians.
Old fashioned wind up watches are acceptable alternatives.
Wear as little jewelry as possible & take it off at night. 
Avoid wire framed eyeglasses and Bluetooth wireless telephone devices in our ears as these can serve as antennas to focus radio & cellular phone waves directly into our brain.
We are electrical conductors.  Ever wonder why when we go to the doctor for a physical and they put those electrodes all over our chest, arms and legs to do an EKG?  It is tracing the electrical conduction through our hearts.  How many people do we know who experience heart palpitations, nervousness, trouble sleeping, memory lapses…it makes me wonder about all this exposure.
This topic is very interesting and thought provoking to say the least.
It is a hot topic is the Integrative Medicine arena as more healthcare professionals begin to address EMFs exposure and the subsequent free radical damage as a serious risk factor in heart disease, cancers, and all inflammatory diseases.  Electromedicine is now a specialty that has come out of this discovery.
I would like to recommend a book to everyone called “Earthing” by Clinton Ober, Dr. Stephen Sinatra and Martin Zucker.
In this book, it is explained that the Earth itself is the original anti-inflammatory and the planet itself is the biggest electron donor.
Clinton Ober uncovered the health benefits of Earthing, his term for connecting ourselves to the surface of our planet by sitting, standing, or walking barefoot on the Earth or by sleeping on special conductive sheets and pads connected to a simple metal rod stuck in the ground outside a bedroom window.  He invented these sleep systems and a number of other devices that help us to restore a vital but previously overlooked connection with Mother Earth.
Many people describe a sense of well- being when they walk barefoot on the Earth.  It is recommended that we all walk, stand and sit barefoot on the ground for a half hour per day or so.
The Earth has a healing electromagnetic field that aligns perfectly with our bodies.  When we realize that most of our days are spent separated from the limitless healing energy that the surface beneath our feet holds, we are called to go back to the Earth’s surface to “ground” ourselves.
I personally wear something on my body everyday while at work and home called a "Zero Point Energy Pen (Wand)".  It contains crystals and minerals that act as a buffer for the EMFs that surround me in my electronic world. I find it creates for me a sense of calm as I go about my day of electronic medical record documenting, emailing, cell phone calls, etc. Whatever works for you will lessen the exposure to the fields around us.
With that said, I would like to return to my previous state of gratitude and be ever so thankful for the pioneers in whole food invention, Dr. Smokey Santillo and Jay Martin, for coming up with a way for us to better protect ourselves from oxidative stress and free radical damage.
Even with the best of intentions to avoid EMF exposure, our bodies experience large amounts of “free radical damage” and oxidative stress.
Juice Plus+, whole food concentrate has been scientifically proven to reduce oxidative stress and reduce inflammation, protect our DNA from damage and offers us the anti-oxidation to neutralize the free radicals in our bodies. 
The antioxidants found in Juice Plus+ are much like the Earth, the ultimate electron donor, to create stability in our unstable world.
Eating Juice Plus+ everyday can help protect us from the potential damage of “Cybersmog” and increase our ability to weather the storm of EMFs.
So get outside, sit on the ground, take off your shoes, and be sure to take your Juice Plus+ every single day!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Your Health

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 One of the pitfalls of pursuing a healthy diet is that we are sometimes blind to nutrients we may be missing. And in the world of healthy eating, one of the most common nutrient deficiencies involves vitamin B-12, a crucial nutrient for nerve health and the construction of red blood cells that carry oxygen throughout your body. Vitamin B-12 deficiency is especially common among vegetarians and vegans, but it's also surprisingly common in meat eaters, too. Why? Because vitamin B-12 can only be absorbed in the small intestine, and due to common intestinal ailments, even many meat eaters who consume high levels of B-12 are unable to absorb it in their gut.
This leads to a series of seemingly "mystery" health symptoms that actually have a simple common cause: Vitamin B-12 deficiency!
Symptoms of B-12 deficiency

B-12 deficiency is shockingly widespread. Studies now show that up to 40% of the population may be deficient in vitamin B-12 (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7595423.stm).
Here are some of the most common symptoms of deficiency (do you experience any of these?):
* Chest pain or shortness of breath
* Fatigue or unexplained weakness
* Dizziness, trouble with balance, and fainting
* Confusion, memory loss or dementia
* Coldness, numbness or tingling in the hands and feet
* Slow reflexes or diminished nervous system function
* Pale skin or yellowing of the skin
* Sore mouth and tongue
* Restless Legs Syndrome
* Chest wall pain

... in addition, vitamin B-12 deficiency can actually cause brain shrinkage, according to a University of Oxford study (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7595423.stm). Although more work needs to be done, research is already suggesting a link between vitamin B-12 deficiency and Alzheimer's.
If you (or someone you know) shows any of the symptoms listed above, I urge you to immediately investigate vitamin B-12 and determine if a deficiency in this nutrient may be causing your symptoms!
Again, vitamin B-12 deficiency is especially common in vegans and vegetarians because typical vitamin B-12 sources (meats, yogurt, etc.) are simply not present in their diets. But even meat eaters can be deficient in B-12 due to poor digestion. This is especially true for older people who suffer a diminished ability to absorb nutrients in their small intestine.
In addition, diabetes medications and even pain pills can interfere with B-12 absorption, and intestinal parasites can also strongly block its absorption in the gut.

Solutions for vitamin B-12

Traditionally, people who are deficient in vitamin B-12 have received injections of B-12. This is extremely effective because it bypasses the digestive tract and goes right into the bloodstream. But it has one obvious downside: It requires being injected! So most people aren't interested in this method.
Instead, most people supplement their vitamin B-12 using nutritional supplements. But here's where this can go wrong: The most commonly available form of vitamin B-12 on the market is the cheap synthetic form that's actually bound to a cyanide molecule (yes, cyanide, the poison). It's called cyanocobalamin, and you'll find it in all the cheap vitamins made by pharmaceutical companies and sold at grocery stores and big box stores.
Action item: If you have any vitamin B-12 supplements, check the ingredients label right now to see what form of vitamin B-12 they contain. If they contain cyanocobalamin, throw them out!
Cyanocobalamin is a cheap, synthetic chemical made in a laboratory. It's virtually impossible for you to find this form in nature. Low-end vitamin manufacturers use it because it can be bought in bulk and added to products with claims that they "contain vitamin B-12!" What they don't tell you is that the vitamin is bound to a toxic, poisonous cyanide molecule that must then be removed from your body by your liver. Cyanocobalamin is also up to 100 times cheaper than the higher quality methylcobalamin which we'll talk about below.
As Wikipedia explains: "A common synthetic form of the vitamin, cyanocobalamin, does not occur in nature, but is used in many pharmaceuticals and supplements, and as a food additive, because of its lower cost. In the body it is converted to the physiological forms, methylcobalamin and adenosylcobalamin, leaving behind the cyanide..." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin_B12)
Removing the cyanide molecule from the vitamin and then flushing it out of your body requires using up so-called "methyl groups" of molecules in your body that are needed to fight things like homocysteine (high levels cause heart disease). By taking low-quality cyanobalamin, you're actually stealing methyl groups from your body and making it do more work at the biochemical level. This uses up substances such as glutathione that are often in short supply anyway, potentially worsening your overall health situation rather than helping it. This is one of the reasons why low-grade vitamins may actually be worse for your body than taking nothing at all!
Cyanocobalamin, in summary, is a low-grade, low-quality and slightly toxic (cyanide) form of vitamin B-12 that's used by all the cheap vitamin manufacturers. I recommend avoiding it completely. It won't kill you to take it, of course, but there's a better solution for B-12.
The better choice: Methylcobalamin
The proper form of vitamin B-12 to supplement is called methylcobalamin. This is the form that exists in nature, and it is pre-methylated, meaning it's ready for your biochemistry to put to immediate use. Methylcobalamin has several key advantages over cyanocobalamin:
* Increased absorption
* Better retention in tissues
* Contains no toxic cyanide
* Supports production of SAMe
As explained by Ed Sharpe:
"The coenzyme form of vitamin B12 is known as methylcobalamin or methyl B12. It's the only form of vitamin B12 which can directly participate in homocysteine metabolism. In addition, converting homocysteine to methionine via methyl B12 generates an increased supply of SAMe (S-adenosyl methionine), the body's most important methyl donor." (http://www.health101.org/art_methylcobalamin.htm)
Every informed nutritionist knows that methylcobalamin is far superior to cyanocobalamin. That's why companies like Xymogen (http://www.xymogen.com/) use only the high-end "methyl" form of B-12.

Taking vitamin B-12 as an oral dose is largely a waste of money. As much as 99% of what you swallow is not even absorbed... it's just passed through your body. (http://www.health101.org/art_methylcobalamin.htm)
There are really only three methods for absorbing vitamin B-12 that reliably work:
#1) B-12 injections.
#2) Sublingual absorption.
#3) Skin absorption.
B-12 injections obviously require injections from a trained medical professional, so few people pursue this route. Sublingual absorption is a viable route, but nearly all the sublingual B-12 products use the cyanocobalamin form of the vitamin (with the cyanide molecule).
A vitamin B-12 skin patch is now available that delivers methylcobalamin through the skin, using a small medical-grade patch placed behind the ear. Each patch delivers 1000 mcg of methylcobalamin (1,666% DV) in a steady release over a 1-2 day period, after which the patch may be removed and discarded.
In addition to methylcobalamin, each path also delivers 400mcg of Folic Acid (another form of a B vitamin), which is widely known to work synergistically with methylcobalamin to help support healthy heart function and nervous system function*.
B-12 energy patch works through skin absorption
The B-12 Energy Patch is available now in packs of 8 patches (a 1-2 month supply) from the NaturalNews Store. This 8-pack carries a list price of $39.95, but through our volume purchasing, we are able to offer it to NaturalNews readers at 53% off the list price.
When purchased in a 3-pack (total of 24 patches), the price is lowered even more to 57% off the list price.
Click here to see the products in our store.
* These products are not intended to treat, diagnose, prevent or cure any disease.
What customers say about this B-12 patch

(From Amazon.com) "For me a much better alternative to effective sublingual pills"

"B12 is running low in my family tree. A couple of relatives have been regular at getting B12 shots. I never felt like I needed the shots, because I thought I could get by with red meat, liver and sublingual pills. I decided to try the patches just to see... I did not expect them to be more effective than sublingual pills.
I must say I was wrong. From the first patch I noticed the boost, which is at first more subtle than the more noticeable boost of the sublingual pills giving you more B12 in a shorter time span. But it picks up over time and feels way more efficient. By way of example, I used the big plate in my road bike and did not pant at the top of three bad climbs hours after getting the patch. To get this kind of effect with sublingual pills after getting low of B12 would take over ten days for me and quite a bit of dedication remembering to keep supplementing. It can get rather tedious waiting for the pills to dissolve under the tongue.
The second day I used two patches right behind the ear, but they both fell off, presumably from the sweat biking. Yet the day before the one patch I tried less close to the ear stayed put biking and after two showers, and I had no dropped patches since. If you exercise, watch out for areas where sweat would accumulate.
I think there is no comparison between this brand and the other one advertised. For four bucks more, you get half the patches and the wrong type of B12 -- cyanocobalamin instead of methylcobalamin. Read about it because cyanocobalamin has to be turned into methylcobalamin by the liver. You can spare that. My doctor put me on cyanocobalamin initially and I turned to methylcobalamin with much greater results. Also, this brand I review has the daily allowance of folic acid as an added bonus (read up on the benefits of taking folic acid with B12), rather than selenium.
I've had no side effects and no skin reactions with this product. I am so satisfied I have ordered a B-complex as a patch from a different company. It is advised to have a B-complex if you supplement in big doses with any vitamin of the B family."
Click here to see the products in our store.
They're discounted right now at an incredible price through the NaturalNews Store.

Whatever form of vitamin B-12 you use, remember this: avoid cyanocobalamin! (Unless you enjoy eating cyanide, that is...)