|IntroductionOn July 10, 2013, major media headlines and news stories claimed “Too Much Fish Oil Might Boost Prostate Cancer Risk.”Wow,
that sure seems fishy given all of the positive health benefits linked
to fish oil intake. In examining the study, there are numerous issues
that clearly indicate that perhaps the conclusion is wrong, but really a
study’s conclusion is only as good as the study itself.
Data Used was From the SELECT Study
The pedigree of the study source is impressive. It was published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute and was conducted by researchers from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle, WA.1 Yet, the data they used is from the much maligned Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial (SELECT). That is the real problem.
The SELECT study was a very large clinical study that attempted to determine whether vitamin E could prevent prostate cancer. Previous studies had shown 50 IU of vitamin E was protective against prostate cancer, but the SELECT study chose to use 400 IU of synthetic vitamin E (dl-alpha-tocopherol) at a dosage of 400 IU. Results showed that the subjects taking vitamin E alone had a 17% higher risk of prostate cancer compared to the control group.
In the new analysis, researchers measured the levels of fats in the blood (plasma phospholipids) and concluded that men with the highest concentrations of EPA, DPA and DHA-three fatty acids derived from fish and fish-oil supplements-had an increased risk of prostate cancer. Specifically, they reported a 71 percent increased risk of high-grade prostate cancer; a 44 percent increase in the risk of low-grade prostate cancer and an overall 43 percent increase in risk for total prostate cancer in a subset of patients with the highest level of these omega-3 fatty acids.
Important considerations of this data are the following:
Lastly, the following statement by the authors suggests that they may have significant bias: “There is really no evidence that taking dietary supplements is beneficial to health, and there is increasing evidence that taking high doses is harmful.” Such a statement shows a clear axe to grind in light of a great deal of scientific evidence on the value of dietary supplementation.
A Closer Look at the Reported Results
Let’s take a closer look at the reported results to see if things add up. The bottom line is that they do not. Let’s first take a look at the blood levels of EPA+DHA – the major forms of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil supplements. As Table 1 shows the levels are quite similar among the groups. These blood levels of EPA+DHA are actually quite modest and do not reflect huge levels of fish or fish supplements being consumed. The average EPA+DHA plasma level for men is generally approximately 4%. So, the levels reported here are typical, but a little lower than normal and the ratio of EPA to DHA is also a little lower as well.
Table 1. Distribution of EPA and DHA among SELECT participants by prostate cancer grade (n=2273)*
What the researchers did next was divide cancer patients up by their blood levels of fatty acids and look at the hazard ratio – the relative risk over time – associated with different levels of the various fatty acids (see Table 2). As it relates to EPA, statistical significance was not achieved for total cancer or high-grade cancer (the P value has to be less than 0.05 to be deemed anything more than random chance). For DHA, there was statistical significance. But, again, the levels of DHA are typical of what is found in men consuming modest amounts of fish. However, the level of EPA was lower than that typically found and the ratio of EPA to DHA was also lower. What this may mean is that there may be increased conversion of EPA to DHA in prostate cancer. Though one interesting observation is that the hazard ratio (HR) actually went down in high-grade prostate cancer in the group with the highest level of DHA compared to the next highest group. This suggests that it is not that significant of a factor as one would expect if it was that the higher the level the higher the HR. But, this finding has a P value of 0.09 so no real conclusions can be made as it was probably a random finding.
Table 2. Associations between EPA and DHA among SELECT participants by prostate cancer grade (n=2273)
The authors conclude that men are at higher risk of aggressive prostate cancer if the total plasma level of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids (EPA+DPA+DHA) is greater than 3.68%. If that were true, then aggressive prostate cancer would be a major health concern and the leading cause of death in any country with even moderate fish consumption. The facts are that population-based studies show just the opposite effect. For example, prostate cancer incidence and death rates are among the lowest known in populations consuming the traditional Japanese or Mediterranean diets, two diets with a relatively high content of EPA+DHA.
What do other Studies Show?
In addition to population-based studies, several studies have been conducted that were actually designed to determine the effects of fish and fish oil consumption in prostate cancer. In a detailed meta-analysis conducted in 2010, while fish consumption did not affect prostate cancer incidence, it was associated with a 63% reduced mortality due to prostate cancer.2 A meta-analysis examines all previously conducted studies. Here are some of the results from some of these studies:
While some studies make an important distinction, others do not. When ascertaining the benefits of fish consumption it is important to find out how the fish is being prepared. For example, regular ingestion of fried fish was associated with a 32% increased risk for prostate cancer.8 In addition, many studies do not control for the quality of fish or fish oil. Some fish (and fish oil supplements) can contain environmental chemicals that can contribute to prostate cancer such as PCBs, heavy metals, and other toxic chemicals.9, 10 These are important considerations.
The best thing about this study is that it will stimulate more research into the role of omega-3 fatty acids in prostate health. The worst thing about this study is that it may lead to many men abandoning the use of fish oil supplements. Based upon a large amount of clinical data it makes sense for men to be consuming 1,000 mg of EPA+DHA daily for general health. And, if they are suffering from one of the over 60 different health conditions shown to be benefitted by fish oil supplementation the dosage should be increased to 3,000 mg of EPA+DHA daily.
1. Brasky TM, Darke AK, Song X, et al. Plasma phospholipid fatty acids and prostate cancer risk in the SELECT Trial. J National Cancer Inst Online. July 10, 2013 doi: 10.1093/jnci/djt174
2. Szymanski KM, Wheeler DC, Mucci LA. Fish consumption and prostate cancer risk: a review and meta-analysis. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Nov;92(5):1223-33.
3. Terry P, Lichtenstein P, Feychting M, Ahlbom A, Wolk A. Fatty fish consumption and risk of prostate cancer. Lancet 2001; 357: 1764-6
4. Chavarro JE et al. A 22-y prospective study of fish intake in relation to prostate cancer incidence and mortality. Am J Clin Nutr 2008; 88: 1297-303.
5. Augustsson, K., et al., A prospective study of intake of fish and marine fatty acids and prostate cancer. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev, 12(1): p. 64-7, 2003.
6. Norrish AE, Skeaff CM, Arribas GL, Sharpe SJ, Jackson RT. Prostate cancer risk and consumption of fish oils: a dietary biomarker-based case-control study. Br J Cancer 1999;81:1238-42.
7. Leitzmann MF, Stampfer MJ, Michaud DS, et al. Dietary intake of n-3 and n-6 fatty acids and the risk of prostate cancer. Am J Clin Nutr. 2004 Jul;80(1):204-16.
8. Stott-Miller M, Neuhouser ML, Stanford JL. Consumption of deep-fried foods and risk of prostate cancer. Prostate. 2013 Jun;73(9):960-9.
9. Ritchie JM, Vial SL, Fuortes LJ, Robertson LW, Guo H, Reedy VE, Smith EM.Comparison of proposed frameworks for grouping polychlorinated biphenyl congener data applied to a case-control pilot study of prostate cancer. Environ Res. 2005;98(1):104-13.
10. Mullins JK, Loeb S. Environmental exposures and prostate cancer. Urol Oncol. 2012 Mar-Apr;30(2):216-9.
Almost everyone will experience this condition called vertigo if you
live long enough and the medications given for this sometimes can have
unpleasant side effects. In the natural field it has always been
recommended to take ginger root capsules 3 times daily because ginger
root does have impressive effects on balancing the inner ear canals
where these fluids circulate which can improve symptoms however I have
recently found a technique that offers the best relief from this
condition. Many experts believe that small bits of calcium break off in
the circular liquid filled part of the ear that creates this vertigo and
a technique named, “Epley maneuver” offers great improvement in many
cases. The Epley maneuver tends to relocate the loose calcium that has
caused the vertigo back into a place where it stops the symptoms. The
way to learn this technique can be found by going to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YK2Zj_TrBhE
(This is not a treatment to replace seeing your health practitioner if needed)
My comment on all of this is to restate my opinion that excess calcium in the wrong places in the body is one of the most devastating reasons for disease and poor health as we age. When calcium leaves the bones or is poorly absorbed, it causes us to age at accelerated rate probably equal to all bad habits combined. The reasons calcium gets misplaced in the body is because of: acid reflux medicine, taking poor quality calcium supplements, being deficient in magnesium, and lack of enzymes in the small intestines.
Start now addressing the above reasons for calcium problems and keep this email so in the event you or someone else may have vertigo, you will have the link to learn how to help yourself.
till next time
What if I told you that I know a simple hands on technique that could reduce pain, calm anxiety, stop over-thinking, cut food craving, reduce emotional trauma, and cut short drug, alcohol and tobacco addictions. The technique is called EFT and is used by millions worldwide and now has substantial medical studies to back up its claims. I was taught EFT by a friend and expert from New York several years ago and have personally used it hundreds of times for a variety of issues.
How does it work? Based on the principles of both ancient acupressure and modern psychology, tapping concentrates on specific meridian endpoints while focusing on negative emotions or physical sensations. Combined with spoken word, tapping helps calm the nervous system to restore the balance of energy in the body and rewire the brain to respond in healthy ways.
The leading expert and teacher today in EFT is Nick Ortner and I listened with amazement in Atlanta last month to the stories he told of veterans with Post Traumatic Stress that now have their lives back, people with excruciating chronic pain that now lead normal lives because of EFT. Also simple stories about curing nausea, anxiety, and so many other maladies that it was mind-boggling. The medical field wants to offer medication only for most of these issues yet with EFT you have something that is totally free and completely safe.
Nick Ortner is the author of the bestselling book, The Tapping Solution. In his book you’ll not only learn how to start EFT tapping, you’ll also get the history and cutting-edge science behind it. Featuring step-by-step instructions, exercises, and diagrams, The Tapping Solution shows you how to tap on a variety of issues and identify practical applications. Plus, throughout the book, you’ll find unbelievable, real-life stories of healing, ranging from easing the pain of fibromyalgia to overcoming a fear of flying.
If you are intrigued right now about the use of EFT and don’t want to get the book, simply click on the following this link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZfZBHWSbrsg and it will give you enough basic information to make EFT work instantly without buying anything. Those who really want to immerse themselves in the science and technique of EFT should purchase purchase Nick Ortner’s latest best selling book, The Tapping Solution: A Revolutionary System for Stress-Free Living (been on top of Amazon sales for months)
P.S. One additional and extremely effective natural calming agent is the product Theanine which works to calm the system without drowsiness. When taken at a dose of 400mg, this will add something extra help for those really stressful moments.
till next time and get tapping
The following letter was written in 1907 by a practicing yogi who understood the implications of improper breathing. Read this and you will understand the lifesaving effects of “keeping your mouth closed when breathing”. For those interested in accessing more information on learning how to breathe to create your optimal health, log onto http://breathingcenter.com/
Nostril Breathing Vs. Mouth Breathing
One of the first lessons in the Yogi Science of Breath is to learn how to breathe through the nostrils, and to overcome the common practice of mouth breathing.
The breathing mechanism of Man is so constructed that he may breathe either through the mouth or nasal tubes, but it is a matter of vital importance to him which method he follows, as one brings health and strength and the other disease and weakness.
It should not be necessary to state to the student that the proper method of breathing is to take the breath through the nostrils, but alas! The ignorance among civilized people regarding this simple matter is astounding. We find people in all walks of life habitually breathing through their mouths, and allowing their children to follow their horrible and disgusting example.
Many of the diseases to which civilized man is subject are undoubtedly caused by this common habit of mouth breathing. Children permitted to breathe in this way grow up with impaired vitality and weakened constitutions, and in manhood and womanhood break down and become chronic invalids. Many contagious diseases are contracted by the disgusting habit of mouth breathing, and many cases of cold and catarrhal affections are also attributable to the same cause. Many persons who, for the sake of appearances, keep their mouth closed during the day, persist in mouth breathing at night and often contract disease in this way.
Carefully conducted scientific experiments have shown that soldiers and sailors who sleep with their mouths open are much more liable to contract contagious diseases than those who breathe properly through the nostrils. An instance is related in which smallpox became epidemic on a man-of-war in foreign parts, and every death, which resulted, was that of some sailor or marine who was a mouth breather, not a single nostril breather succumbing.
The organs of respiration have their only protective apparatus, filter, or dust catcher, in the nostrils. When the breath is taken though the mouth, there is nothing from mouth to lungs to strain the air, or to catch the dust and other foreign matter in the air. From mouth to lungs the dirt or impure substance has a clear track, and the entire respiratory system is unprotected. And, moreover, such incorrect breathing admits cold air to the organs, thereby injuring them. Inflammation of the respiratory organs often results from the inhalation of cold air through the mouth. The man, who breathes through the mouth at night, always awakens with a parched feeling in the mouth and dryness in the throat. He is violating one of nature’s laws, and is sowing the seeds of disease.
Once more, remember that the mouth affords no protection to the respiratory organs, and cold air, dust and impurities and germs readily enter by that door. On the other hand, the nostrils and nasal passages show evidence of the careful design of nature in this respect. The nostrils are two narrow, tortuous channels, containing numerous bristly hairs, which serve the purpose of a filter or sieve to strain the air of its impurities, etc., which are expelled when the breath is exhaled. Not only do the nostrils serve this important purpose, but they also perform an important function in warming the air inhaled. The long narrow winding nostrils are filled with warm mucous membrane, which coming in contact with the inhaled air warms it so that it can do no damage to the delicate organs of the throat, or to the lungs.
No animal, excepting man, sleeps with the mouth open or breathes through the mouth, and in fact it is believed that it is only civilized man who so prevents nature’s functions, as the savage and barbarian races almost invariably breathe correctly. It is possible that this unnatural habit among civilized men has been acquired through unnatural methods of living, enervating luxuries and excessive warmth.
The refining, filtering and straining apparatus of the nostrils renders the air fit to reach the delicate organs of the throat and the lungs, and the air is not fit to so reach these organs until it has passed through nature’s refining process. The impurities which are stopped and retained by the sieves and mucous membrane of the nostrils, are thrown out again by the expelled breath, in exhalation, and in case they have accumulated too rapidly or have managed to escape through the sieves and have penetrated forbidden regions, nature protects us by producing a sneeze, which violently ejects the intruder.
The air, when it enters the lungs is as different from the outside air, as is distilled water different from the water of the cistern. The intricate purifying organization of the nostrils, arresting and holding the impure particles in the air, is as important as is the action of the mouth in stopping cherry-stones and fish-bones and preventing them from being carried on to the stomach. Man should no more breathe through his mouth than he would attempt to take food through his nose.
Another feature of mouth breathing is that the nasal passages, being thus comparatively unused, consequently fail to keep themselves clean and clear, and become clogged up and unclean, and are apt to contract local diseases. Like abandoned roads that soon become filled with weeds and rubbish, unused nostrils become filled with impurities and foul matter.
We have given considerable space to this subject of nostril-breathing, not only because of its great importance in its reference to health, but because nostril breathing is a prerequisite to the practice of the breathing exercises, and because nostril breathing is one of the basic principles underlying the yogi science of breath.
By Yogi Ramacharaka
Published in english in 1904
I have been preaching for over 15 years that I do not believe in taking large doses of calcium for the purpose of preventing or treating osteoporosis. I know this may sound odd that I am recommending to not take a nutrient but the important truth is that calcium taken without its additional nutrient helpers becomes a very damaging molecule as it forms plaque, bone spurs, kidney stones and cataracts. The human metabolism is designed to only utilize calcium with the addition of proper amounts of magnesium, vitamin D, vitamin K2 and stomach acids. If any of these 4 are missing, calcium will deposit itself in all the wrong places.
Ten years ago I had the amazing opportunity to attend a college class at Southern College to observe and work with 3 cadavers, (deceased people) in a lab setting. All of these people were over 60 and had died of differing diseases. I spent several hours intently looking and holding all the internal organs from these people and learned much from the professor in charge. I was totally fascinated with all aspects of my day however the take home message soon became crystal clear to me was this- THE CALCIUM THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN IN THE BONES OF THESE PEOPLE HAD INSTEAD FOUND ITS WAY INTO THE ARTERIES AND INTERNAL ORGANS. When I first squeezed the pencil size artery of the women cadaver and it made a sound similar to crushing an egg shell, I instantly realized that most of us die of old age simply because we become a stone statue which inhibits all our internal organs efficiency and not because our organs were worn out!
Health professionals and physicians today receive their bulk of information on nutrition in tiny snippets of data that does not allow them to embrace the entire complexity of any nutrition topic, yet they dispense this inaccurate advice to their patients as fact which is a horrible disservice. Nutrition is compared to an orchestra that requires all the instruments to create the music and if one is missing, the music will be sadly lacking. Nutrients will NEVER be able to be reduced to a single molecule that accomplishes one result because all nutrients work with dozens of accessory compounds to complete their job. Soon you probably be hearing that calcium is worthless for bones and harmful to your health and that you should stop supplementing with it, which is both untrue. The truth is that we need calcium but it must be combined with its
accessory helpers to accomplish preventing osteoporosis and other benefits.
You and your family are now armed with all the proper information needed if you are taking calcium to make it safe and effective. Now when you read in the media or hear everyone speak of calcium as a poison, just smile and go on your way because you now know, “The rest of the story”.
To listen an audio explanation of this topic: visit Dr. Kate Rhéaume-Bleue author of the book, Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox: How a Little-Known Vitamin Could Save Your Life
till next time
Despite eating well, supplementing even better and exercising for 45 years straight, I have had bouts of poor sleeping, early awakening and insomnia that I know detracted from my energy and health. I started with poor sleeping patterns soon after my daughter was born in 1980 I have pursued every path that offered help and I must say with little results, until now. I have finally come up with a system that has worked incredibly well to allow quality sleep for over 6 months straight and it finally addressed the cause rather than simply treating the symptoms.
The first step along my path to develop my sleep system was an audio book I listened to called, The Yoga of Sleep: Sacred and Scientific Practices to Heal Sleeplessness by Dr Rubin Naiman. Dr Naiman opened my eyes to the concept of how many of us compromise a good night sleep by a pattern of becoming stressed by the mental idea that we are not going to get good sleep. If we wake up during the night, many times we cannot return because we allow ourselves to worry that we woke up! When I heard this theory I knew that was partially my problem. I remembered a few years ago about a device called the Zeo sleep machine, which monitors the levels of sleep that we are in during the night. I assumed that if I could truly determine how much sleep and at what times I awoke, this would help me to reduce my worry because I would know exactly how my night went. Along with using the Zeo machine, I added 1mg of melatonin, which Dr Naiman recommended in his book, and one tablet of Terry Naturally’s St John Wort which is an amazing product for increasing serotonin, balancing brain chemistry and helping prevent early morning awakenings. For more info on St John Wort, visit Terry Naturally’s website.
Lastly I followed Dr Naiman’s research on keeping the temperature very cool and the room totally dark by using an eye mask to prevent light from being seen and turning out all lights in the bedroom. The very last item for me is to never go to bed hungry because hunger prevents normal blood sugars and inhibits brain chemistry in many individuals.
Before starting my program I would normally go to bed at 10pm and by 11:30 I would awake my first time, but I would usually return to sleep within a few minutes. I would awaken for a second time by 1 to 2 pm and this is when I would start over thinking about how my poor night sleep was going to cause problems with all I had to do the next day. Sleep came slow and I seemed to only be in the light sleep and when I did return to sleep, it never felt refreshing. I would toss and turn trying to force sleep which guarantees no sleep!
Fast forward this story by a month after using the Zeo sleep monitor and I have completely relinquished ALL anxiety and worries about how much sleep I really get because I know from reading the Zeo screen each morning how much and what level of sleep I attained. The truth is that many times in the past I truly believed I was awake for one hour at night which in truth turned out to be more like 6 minutes and I often believed I was sleeping lightly for hours when in truth it was often less than 30 minutes. This completely relaxed me in a way that no longer do I ever worry about getting enough sleep which of course allows my sleep to come naturally. If I occasionally get a little less sleep on one night than I desire, I know the next night will be plenty adequate to make me feel rested.
If you would like to listen to the free audio about sleep and insomnia from Dr Naiman, click here.
To learn more about the incredible Zeo Sleep machine, visit the Zeo website.
till next time and pleasant dreams