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Letters to the Editor Issue 149

by Letters(more info)

listed in letters to the editor, originally published in issue 149 - July 2008

Federal Regulation – To Be Or Not To Be

by Ann Roden

1.    It is an acknowledgment of our professionalism that the Cranial Forum was asked to join the Federal Working Party;

2.    We are one of eight professions who have been involved in the Final Report. This is the first regulatory body for Complementary Therapies in Europe;

3.    It is easier to bring about change by being inside rather than outside. We must not throw the baby out with the bath water;

4.    We should take heed about what is happening with Psychotherapists who are in the process of being regulated – all are on the register of UKCP but the Government has decided that only analytic, cognitive therapy and mechanical psychotherapy are to be included. Those trained as Humanistic Psychotherapists are not being included and will not be allowed to practise. This will lead to loss of employment and the closure of all Humanistic Psychotherapy training colleges and the loss of a very valuable therapy. It would not be ethical to practise without being affiliated to a regulatory body;

5.    At the Federal Working Party (FWP), I asked about changes in requirements which might be brought in after signing up to the federal system and was assured by the DoH member that provided Craniosacral had very clear procedures, no one would wish to impose any other strictures – we would maintain our autonomy to practice within the guidelines we have ourselves laid down;

6.    The roles of Accreditation and Association are increasingly creating boundary issues which cannot be resolved without a regulatory body;

7.    Similarly with Disciplinary cases, it is increasingly difficult to give support to members and be part of the disciplinary procedures – boundary issues again. We cannot be judge and jury;

8.    This is an act of faith but I feel we need to trust the process. We can stay in and make it work or we can get out and take the consequences. We must get our heads out of the sand;

9.    We have a Government who is very keen to control everything. However we will have more control inside as we will be involved in shared regulation and not be paddling our own canoe. We will also have the support of the other seven therapy organisations;

10.    One of the biggest complaints about the Federal system is that the Federal Regulatory Council (FRC) is all lay members. The 2007 White Paper asked for Councils to have 50:50 lay representation, moving towards a majority of lay. By 2011 this will be 100% lay. By setting up an FRC with all lay members, the FWP is influencing the game and is in fact ahead of the game. I was the only professional who stood up for professional representation at the FRC level. This was against seven other therapies, four FIH (Federation of Integrated Health) members and four lay members. An agreement was reached to have a Professional Advisory Panel – much to the relief of the lay members!

11.    To be or not to be. We are small  fry in a big pool. Keep swimming.

Ann Roden  annroden@madasafish.com
Source: John Wilks   cyma@btinternet.com

Canada’s Natural Health Products At Risk: Help Stop Bills C-51, C-52 and the Drug Class Natural Health Products Regulations

On April 8th, 2008, the Canadian Minister of Health, Tony Clement introduced Bill C-51 into the House of Commons. This Bill proposes significant changes to the current Food and Drugs Act that will have wide-ranging negative implications for Canadians. As usual MPs were not consulted in advance. They were ordered [WHIPPED] to vote for passing the Bill without even reading the bill in most cases (a ‘whipped’ vote is a government ordered vote in which the MPs must vote with the government or be expelled from their party’s caucus).

If Bill C-51 gets passed and becomes law and the Drug Class Natural Health Products Regulations obtain legislative authority and are not immediately cancelled, more than 70% of Canada’s Natural Health Products will be removed from Canadians, while many others will be available by prescription only. Three existing examples of ‘Prescription Dietary Food Supplements’ are larger doses of Vitamins A and D and L-Carnitine.

Bill C-51 will virtually shut down the Natural Health Industry, denying Canadian access to a wide range of non-drug, nutrient rich plant-based medicines, devices, services and override the Rule of Law, Implied Bill of Rights and other constitutional fundamental rights, freedoms and liberties of Canadians. Bill C-51 significantly intrudes on civil, property and health areas of exclusive Provincial jurisdiction and serves no evidence-based public good.

More than 70% of Canadians now depend on natural products to maintain or enhance their health because they offer a safer and more effective alternative to high-risk pharmaceutical drugs. Bill C-51 will ‘criminalize’ Natural Health Products including vitamins, minerals, herbs, greens drinks, carrot juice and many “Therapeutic” and “Healthy Foods”.

The new law goes so far as to make a criminal of a person who would give another person an ‘unapproved’ amount of garlic on the recommendation that it would improve that person’s health. Bill C-51 will continue the Natural Health Products Regulations mandatory requirement that requires every Natural Health business to have an expensive and complicated license for their business as well as for every Natural Health Product they sell and to restrict sales to licensed operations and products only.

If Bills C-51 and 52 becomes criminal law, under its Sec. 2, agents of the Canadian government, a foreign government, or an organization of states can, without Court oversight and/or access to any Early Dispute Resolution Review of decision process:
•    Enter private property without a warrant [sec. 23(4)];
•    Confiscate your property at their discretion (sec. 23.2);
•    Dispose of your property at their discretion [sec. 23.3(c)];
•    Not reimburse you for your losses [23.3(c)(i),(ii)];
•    Seize your bank accounts without a warrant;
•    Charge owners shipping and storage charges for seized property [sec 23.3(a),(b)];
•    Store your property indefinitely (sec. 23.2);
•    Levy fines of up to $5,000,000.00 and/or seek 2 years in jail per charge [sec. 31(1 )(a);
•    Force expensive and complicated licenses on all businesses and products;
•    Close the borders to all commercial and personal use imports.

Section 30(7) of Bill C-51 eliminates the ability of our elected Officials to protect us by:
1.    Bypassing our elected official’s ability to vote out laws that are not the will of, or in the interest of the Canadian people such as Codex;
2.    Allows government agents, (not elected officials) to create binding laws behind closed doors including foreign countries’ agents;
3.    Eliminate Parliamentary and Canadian Court oversight of government agents’ activities;
4.    Eliminate all Rule of Law and constitutional rights, freedoms and liberties of individual Canada citizens and their small family businesses.

Stephen Harper, Tony Clement and his Conservative government are determined to force this legislation though as quickly as possible. There is very little time left for Canadians to speak up against Bills C-51, C-52 and the Drug Class Natural Health Product Regulations and save our Natural Health Products and fundamental rights of choice.

You need to become actively involved in order to help Stop not only Bill C-51, but Bill C-52 and the Natural Health Product Regulations by writing a letter to your local MP, visiting your MP, joining the Health Freedom Protest Movement and strongly and clearly voicing your concerns and demanding that your MP reads the Bill and votes ‘NO’ on Bill C-51, even at the cost of expulsion from caucus.

Further Information

For details on this Bill, to send protest e-mails, to download action letters and to locate your MP please go to the following websites:

Treatment of Statin Damage

by Dr Duane Graveline MD MPH

Although a number of people take great pride in claiming that years of treatment with statins have caused them no harm, a number of studies have documented how rare this truly is. Not only has Draeger documented that vital changes of muscle structure occur in most statin users, with or without muscle symptoms but Muldoon has shown 100% cognitive loss in statin users if sufficiently sensitive testing is done! We know then that the legacy of statin is both broad and subtle, varying from barely detectable on one hand to death on the other with a full array of symptoms in between.

As to mechanisms of statin damage, we perceive that some are due to reducing tissue cholesterol to unnaturally low values. Draeger postulatesd that lowering of intracellular cholesterol beyond some critical limit causes changes in the myofibrillar structure of our muscles.

Cognition impairment, on the other hand, appears to reflect the combination of mevalonate blockade of cholesterol synthesis in Pfrieger’s hippocampal glial cells as well as by Hope’s limiting of Rho (key signalling protiens involved in synaptic connectivity) availability by altered phosphorylation. Either excessively low cholesterol or Rho will severely affect the synapses that determine our memory.

And we find that some of our damage seems to persist despite having restored cholesterol to normal levels, as if statins contribute to permanent change in the nature or availability of the enzymes and proteins that make us what we are. Could we be talking genetics here? Many researchers now think we might be and are directing their attention to the possibility that even our friendly organelles, our mitochondria, might be involved.

Including our mitochondria as well as somatic cells in their investigations of possible DNA change is validated because our mitochondria already have an excess mutation rate compared with our other cells. Think of them as front-line warriors in a battle to harvest oxygen without being excessively oxidized by legions of free radicals. For this they have a system of anti-oxidants like CoQ10 and glutathione to help. But statins introduce different battlefield conditions, for they inhibit the synthesis of both CoQ10 and glutathione in their cholesterol-lowering, mevalonate blockade. Free radicals abound and mutations climb.

You cannot reverse a mutation, most researchers would say but we do not really ‘know’ this yet. This war has only just begun. The question has been raised, “Are vitamins, minerals and other co-factors helpful?” We know only that certain things have been tried that appear to help.

The value of cofactor therapy is difficult to measure. These diseases have a varied clinical course and some patients have acute exacerbations followed by long periods of stability or partial recovery. In addition, there are literally hundreds of different defects that affect different organ systems in each person, making outcome measures almost impossible to determine. Furthermore, the treatment duration of many negative studies may not be long enough to determine.

Despite the lack of experimental data, most persons with suspected mitochondrial abnormalities chose to take supplemental vitamins and cofactors. I recommend persons with statin myopathy seriously consider using these cofactors if still symptomatic despite traditional therapy. I also recommend using the smaller starting doses until experience is gained.

Co-factor supplements:

1.    CoQ10: Most of you know this has three major roles. One is that of a potent anti-oxidizer. Another is critical for electron transport in our energy equation and the third has to do with cell wall integrity. The benefit of CoQ10 in statin damage of all types is now well documented. Dr Peter Langsjoen has published many articles of its importance in cardiac energy production. Statins can reduce our Q10 levels some 50% within only a few weeks. Coenzyme Q10, 5-10 mg/kg in divided doses will make a good robust trial for a month or so. Variable gastrointestinal absorption dependent on formulation. Maximal benefit may take months. Ubiquinol favored in poor absorption cases;

2.    Levocarnitine (L-carnitine, carnitine), is a cofactor required for the metabolism of fatty acids. Carnitine palmitoyl transferase is the enzyme required in this process and also found by Georgirenne Vladitu at the Arnold Guthrie Genetics Lab to be lacking or abnormal in a surprisingly large number of people. Carnitine deficiency can cause clinical myopathy or cardiomyopathy and lead to rhabdomyolysis. L-carnitine 30-100 mg/kg in divided doses daily;

3.    Selenium’s importance to susceptibility to certain infections and immunodefense and even to statin myopathy has only recently been disclosed. Only within the past five years have Mooseman and Behl taught us that selenoprotein synthesis was impaired by statins and discovered that selenium deficiency can induce a myopathy with pathologic findings identical to that of statins. Selenium 25-50 microgram/ day is the usually recommended dose, but in case of statin involvement, twice daily might be advisable. Avoid excess;

4.    Magnesium: Some nutritionists stress that 80-90% of the US population is magnesium deficient. Adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the ‘energy currency’ of the cell, is magnesium dependent according to Ann Kapelson, Navy flight surgeon friend of mine. Without enough ‘biologically available’ magnesium, the cellular calcium pump slows down and vigour and muscle strength wanes. Magnesium maleate or maleate with magnesium, 500mg daily should be entirely adequate. Avoid excess;

5.    B Vitamins: B vitamins 1,2 and 3 are all recommended
    Thiamine (vitamin B1) 100-800 mg
    Riboflavin (vitamin B2) 400 mg
    Niacinamide (vitamin B3) 100-500 mg

6.    Creatine: Although creatine phosphate is critical to the energy equation of the body and creatine phosphate has been shown to be helpful in some patients with weakness due to their myopathy, because the benefits may be transient, it is recommended that this therapy be reserved for acute crises under supervision and discontinued as soon as possible;

How much Exercise?

For years I have walked daily for exercise and recommended the same for my patients. Now that I have personally encountered statin damage in the form of an ALS-like condition, I find I no longer can walk as before and have found that to ‘push’ is to hurt and I have had to give up my life long habit. Let me explain.

Each of our muscles is a bag of fibres, known as myofibrils. Hundreds of these myofibrils work together to meet the needs of our body. Statin myopathy can, of course, be sudden in onset and extreme like rhabdomyolysis. But in many cases, like mine, it is slowly progressive, a myofibril here and a myofibril there. In time, some 10% of our myofibrils may be damaged beyond repair. For a while we can continue our daily walking, exhorting our remaining functional fibres to compensate. But soon, some 75% of our myofibrils are gone and to attempt our regular daily walk is to strain the remaining myofibrils well beyond their capacity. That is where I am right now – walking beyond a few yards or standing erect for more than a few minutes no longer is possible. To push is to hasten the destructive process. Enough said.
If you find anything else that you know from personal experience is helpful, please advise by messaging our forum.
Duane Graveline MD MPH

About the Author

Dr Graveline advanced from US Air Force Flight Surgeon to NASA flight controller for the Mercury and Gemini program and on to selection as one of NASA’s six Scientist Astronauts in 1965. He worked 23 years as a Physician in Family Practice and then MD locum tenens in Virginia until retirement from medical practice in 1994 at the age of 63. He returned to NASA from 2003 to 2005 as a Consultant specializing in the effects of cosmic radiation. He is now retired and studying and writing on the effects of statin drugs. Please visit Dr Graveline’s information dense website often for updates:
http://spacedoc.net/
Source
Chris Gupta  chrisgupta@alumni.uwaterloo.ca  http://tinyurl.com/5v6roj
www.newmediaexplorer.org/chris/2005/03/28/frequently_asked_questions_about_statins.htm
Further Information
Extensive references are on Dr Duan Graveline’s website  http://spacedoc.net/

Britain’s Periodontal Disease a Plaque Plague

According to a new report from University College London entitled Periodontal Disease in Modern Day Britain, over half of all adults in Britain are suffering a dental condition known as Periodontitis.1 In addition to costing the NHS over £2.7 billion annually,2 this chronic dental condition could cost adults an unwanted visit by the tooth fairy, according to new data.

The report findings reveal a nation suffering from periodontal disease, a condition which causes bad breath and swollen gums which bleed on brushing or flossing. Left untreated, this can progress to pus-filled cavities, receding gums and loss of tooth support. Despite the prevalence of the disease, recent survey results suggest that more than 80% of adults have not heard of the condition or cannot identify its symptoms.3

Lack of awareness and prevention take a toll in the form of professional extractions to remove teeth in diseased areas of the mouth.2 With periodontal disease already widespread in the UK, the findings of
Periodontal Disease in Modern Day Britain offer a bleak prognosis for the nation’s oral health, aggravated by a series of contributory factors.

Oral Hygiene Routines Remain Lax

Periodontal disease is caused by oral bacteria, or plaque, which colonizes on teeth, between teeth and under the gumline, where toothbrush bristles cannot reach. Over time, these bacteria infect the gum’s soft tissue and the jaw bone, leading to lost tooth support. The most important way of protecting against plaque is through effective self care.4 Tooth-brushing alone addresses bacteria living in only 24% of the mouth,5 so effective oral care needs to include a combination of tooth-brushing, flossing and twice-daily use of an anti-bacterial mouthwash4 to clean the entire mouth. Mouthwashes containing essential oils, can kill (in lab tests) up to 99.9% of oral bacteria6 and can reduce up to 52% more plaque than brushing and flossing alone.4

Growing Long in the Tooth
Periodontal disease is more common amongst the elderly. Approximately 67% of people aged over 65 suffer, compared to 47% of 25-34 year-olds,1 and the ageing population is growing.7 If rates of periodontal disease continue to rise in proportion with the ageing population, by 2030, 8 million members of today’s over-35 population could suffer from advanced Periodontitis.

The Mouth-Body Connection
Several medical conditions have been linked to severity of periodontal disease. Diabetes mellitus (Type 2) is one of them.8 There are currently over 2.3 million people with diabetes in the UK. Dentists advise those suffering from diabetes to take extra care of their teeth and gums, but it is estimated that up to 750,000 people in the UK do not know that they are living with diabetes.9 The ageing population, combined with the high incidence of obesity (currently 24% of all UK adults,10 mean that by 2036 there will be approximately 20% more cases of Type 2 diabetes in the UK than in 2000.11

Front Line Dental Care in Short Supply
Pressure on dental services is at an all time high. Despite this, at last estimate, there were 21,000 NHS dentists in the UK,12 providing one dentist for every 2,879 patients. Changes made to the NHS contract in April 2006 have inspired research on NHS dental access in the UK. Recent research estimated that 2.7 million adults have gone without professional dental care in the past two years,13 mainly because they cannot find an NHS dentist.

Britain’s Black Spots
People living in the North-West, in Liverpool and Manchester are revealed as being most at risk, suffering disproportionate levels of periodontal disease against the national average,14 compounded by lack of comprehensive dental care in the area. The North-West has the fifth-worst ratio of NHS dentists per capita in Britain with 1 dentist for every 2,304 members of the population. The worst ratios exist in the West Midlands (1:2,581), the East Midlands (1:2,554), Yorkshire & the Humber (1:2,543) and the North East (1:2,493). Slightly better ratios exist in London (1:1,957), the South East Coast (1:1,970), South Central England (1:2,202) and the East of England (1:2,215).7

The Periodontal Disease in Modern Day Britain report extends from previous research conducted by the Future Foundation, on behalf of Listerine which revealed many social and consumer barriers to improved oral healthcare routines in the UK. Findings suggested that these barriers would impact periodontal health and implied that further research had to be done to understand the true threat of periodontal disease to the nation.

Periodontal Disease in Modern Day Britain also reports:
•    Seventy five percent of people in the UK are estimated to suffer from some form of gum disease at some point in their lives. More than half the population suffer from moderate Periodontitis. Five percent – as many as three million people suffer from advanced Periodontitis;1
•    Men are more likely to have periodontal disease (57% compared to 51% females) – 80% of women brush their teeth twice or more per day. Only 65% of men do the same;1
•    Over 13 million Brits only brush their teeth once per day;1
•    Brushing is not a stand-alone defence against plaque. Even patients who brush their teeth immediately before dental examination have been shown to retain visible plaque on nearly one-third of their teeth;1
•    People who have highly flexible working times tend to clean their teeth more frequently, use more
oral hygiene aids and have less dental plaque than people with less flexibility;15
•    In addition to poor oral hygiene, smoking, health conditions including stress,16 diabetes10 and pregnancy plus socio economic conditions and age increase the risk.16
•    Copies of Periodontal Disease in Modern Day Britain and the Future Foundation report The Dental Dilemma: A report on the future of oral hygiene are available upon request.

References

1.    Kelly M Steele. J. (1998). Adult Dental Health Survey – Oral Health in the United Kingdom. 1998.
2.    ATP Consulting Ltd. (2008). Adult Periodontal Disease Cost Analysis. A Report Commissioned by Listerine.
3.    Online survey of 130 UK adults. Results collected and analyzed by surveymonkey.com
4.    Sharma, N, et al. Adjunctive Benefit of Essential-Oil Containing Mouthrinse in Reducing Plaque and Gingivitis in Patients who Brush andFloss Regularly: A Six-Month Study. J Ad Dent Assoc. 135. 496-504. 2004.
5.    Kerr WJS et al. The Areas of Various Surfaces in the Human Mouth from Nine Years to Adulthood. J Dent Res. 12: 1528-1530. 1991.
6.    Ross NM et al. Long-Term Effects of Listerine Antiseptic on Dental Plaque and Gingivitis.
J Clinical Dent. 1: 92-95. 1989.
7.    National Statistics Online (2008). Accessed online at ww.statistics.gov.uk/cci/nugget.asp?id=949
8/    Mealey BL. Periodontal Disease and Diabetes: A Two-Way Street. J Am Dent Assoc. 137: 26-31. 2006.
9.    Diabetes UK. Accessed online at http://www.diabetes.org.uk/Guide-to-diabetes/What_is_diabetes/What_is_diabetes/.
10.    Statistics on Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet: England. January 2008. Last viewed 28.3.08 (http://www.ic.nhs.uk/pubs/opadjan08).
11.    Bagust A, Hopkinson PK, Maslove L, Currie CJ. The Projected Health Care Burden of Type 2 Diabetes in the UK from 2000 to 2060. Diabetic Medicine. 19: (s4) , 1-5 doi:10.1046/j.1464-5491.19.s4.2.x. 2002.
12.    NHS Dental Statistics for England: 2006/07.
13.    Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB). Access to NHS Dentists: A Report Conducted by Ipsos MORI. 2008.
14.    Bedi R. Report by the Chief Dental Officer (England) NHS dentistry: Delivering the Charge. 2004.
15.    Abegg C, Marcenes, W, Croucher R, Sheiham A. The Relationship Between Tooth Cleaning Behaviour and Flexibility of Working Time Schedule. J Clin Periodontol. 26: 448-452. 1999.
16.    Sheiham A, Nicolau B. Evaluation of Social and Psychological Factors in Periodontal Disease. Periodology. 36: 2000 118-131 2005.

Further Information

Hannah Marriage, Tel: 020-7067 0259;  hmarriage@webershandwick.com

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