Bone Healing and Strength – 5 Articles

Exercise, lifestyle, and your bones

From MedlinePlus
Osteoporosis is a disease that causes bones to become brittle and more likely to fracture (break). With osteoporosis, the bones lose density. Bone density is the amount of bone tissue that is in your bone.

Exercise plays a key role in preserving bone density as you age.

Why Exercise?

Make exercise a regular part of your life. It will help keep your bones strong and lower your risk of osteoporosis and fractures as you get older.

Before you begin an exercise program, talk with your doctor if you are older, have not been active for a while, have diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, or any other health condition.

How Much and What Type of Exercise?

To build up bone density, the exercise must make your muscles pull on your bones. These are called weight-bearing exercises. Some of them are:

  • Brisk walks, jogging, playing tennis, dancing, or other weight-bearing activities such as aerobics and other sports
  • Careful weight training, using weight machines or free weights

Weight bearing exercises also:

  • Increase bone density even in young people
  • Help preserve bone density in women who are approaching menopause

To protect your bones, do weight bearing exercises 3 or more days a week for a total of over 90 minutes a week.

If you are older, do not do high-impact aerobics, such as step aerobics. This type of exercise may increase your risk of fractures.

Low-impact exercises like yoga and tai chi do not help your bone density very much. But they can improve your balance and lower your risk of falling and breaking a bone. And, even though they are good for your heart, swimming and biking do not increase bone density.

Other Lifestyle Changes to Help Your Bones

If you smoke, quit. Also limit how much alcohol you drink. Too much alcohol can damage your bones and raise your risk of falling and breaking a bone.

If you do not get enough calcium, or if your body does not absorb enough calcium from the foods you eat,your body may not make enough new bone. Talk with your health care provider about calcium and your bones.

Vitamin D helps your body absorb enough calcium.

  • Ask your health care provider if you should take a vitamin D supplement.
  • You may need more vitamin D during the winter or if you need to avoid sun exposure to prevent skin cancer.
  • Ask your health care provider about how much sun is safe for you.

Alternate Names

Osteoporosis – exercise; Low bone density – exercise

References

Lewiecki EM. In the clinic. Osteoporosis. Ann Intern Med. 2011 Jul 5;155(1):ITC1-1-15; quiz ITC1-16.

National Osteoporosis Foundation. Clinician’s Guide to Prevention and Treatment of Osteoporosis. Washington,DC: National Osteoporosis Foundation; 2010.

Update Date: 5/17/2012

Updated by: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc.

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Strength training stops bone loss and builds muscle in postmenopausal breast cancer survivors: a randomized, controlled trial.

Source

School of Nursing, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, OR 97239, USA. wintersk@ohsu.edu

Erratum in

  • Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2011 Jun;127(2):457.

Abstract

Targeted exercise training could reduce risk factors for fracture and obesity-related diseases that increase from breast cancer treatment, but has not been sufficiently tested. We hypothesized that progressive, moderate-intensity resistance + impact training would increase or maintain hip and spine bone mass, lean mass and fat mass and reduce bone turnover compared to controls who participated in a low-intensity, non-weight bearing stretching program. We conducted a randomized, controlled trial in 106 women with early stage breast cancer who were >1 year post-radiation and/or chemotherapy, ≥ 50 years of age at diagnosis and postmenopausal, free from osteoporosis and medications for bone loss, resistance and impact exercise naïve, and cleared to exercise by a physician. Women were randomly assigned to participate in 1 year of thrice-weekly progressive, moderate-intensity resistance + impact (jump) exercise or in a similar frequency and length control program of progressive, low-intensity stretching. Primary endpoints were bone mineral density (BMD; g/cm²) of the hip and spine and whole body bone-free lean and fat mass (kg) determined by DXA and biomarkers of bone turnover-serum osteocalcin (ng/ml) and urinary deoxypyrodiniline cross-links (nmol/mmolCr). Women in the resistance + impact training program preserved BMD at the lumbar spine (0.47 vs. -2.13%; P = 0.001) compared to controls. The resistance + impact group had a smaller increase in osteocalcin (7.0 vs. 27%, P = 0.03) and a larger decrease in deoxypyrodinoline (-49.9 vs. -32.6%, P = 0.06) than controls. Increases in lean mass from resistance + impact training were greatest among women currently taking aromatase inhibitors compared to controls not on this therapy (P = 0.01). Our combined program of resistance + impact exercise reduced risk factors for fracture among postmenopausal breast cancer survivors (BCS) and may be particularly relevant for BCS on aromatase inhibitors (AIs) because of the additional benefit of exercise on muscle mass that could reduce falls.”

A comment from me, Deborah: I know of medical doctors, specialists, oncologists…who are ceasing to prescribe the pharmaceuticals that were developed to be used for osteoporosis and osteopenia yet have turned out to be destructive in the long run, and instead they are recommending weight-bearing exercise to improve bone density. Specific exercise under controlled circumstances is proved to be beneficial for healing of bone after surgery as well.

 Bone Mineral Density in Elite Adolescent Female Figure Skaters

Kathy PrelackJohanna DwyerPaula Ziegler and Joseph J Kehayias

Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 2012, 9:57 doi:10.1186/1550-2783-9-57

Published: 27 December 2012
Abstract (provisional)

: Elite adolescent figure skaters must accommodate both the physical demands of competitive training and the accelerated rate of bone growth that is associated with adolescence, in this sport that emphasizes leanness. Although, these athletes apparently have sufficient osteogenic stimuli to mitigate the effects of possible low energy availability on bone health, the extent or magnitude of bone accrual also varies with training effects, which differs among skater disciplines.

Purpose: We studied differences in total and regional bone mineral density among 36 nationally ranked skaters among 3 skater disciplines: single, pairs, and dancers.

Methods

Bone mineral density (BMD) of the total body and its regions was measured by dual energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA). Values for total body, spine, pelvis and leg were entered into a statistical mixed regression model to identify the effect of skater discipline on bone mineralization while controlling for energy, vitamin D, and calcium intake.

Results

The skaters had a mean body mass index of 19.8 +/- 2.1 and % fat mass of 19.2 +/- 5.8. After controlling for dietary intakes of energy, calcium, and vitamin D, there was a significant relationship between skater discipline and BMD (p = 0.002), with single skaters having greater BMD in the total body, legs, and pelvis than ice dancers (p < 0.001). Pair skaters had greater pelvic BMD than ice dancers (p = 0.001).

Conclusions

Single and pair skaters have greater BMD than ice dancers. The osteogenic effect of physical training is most apparent in single skaters, particularly in the bone loading sites of the leg and pelvis.

 

Exercise training in obese older adults prevents increase in bone turnover and attenuates decrease in hip bone mineral density induced by weight loss despite decline in bone-active hormones.

J Bone Miner Res.  2011; 26(12):2851-9 (ISSN: 1523-4681)

Shah K; Armamento-Villareal R; Parimi N; Chode S; Sinacore DR; Hilton TN; Napoli N; Qualls C; Villareal DT
Division of Geriatrics and Nutritional Science, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO, USA.

Weight loss therapy to improve health in obese older adults is controversial because it causes further bone loss. Therefore, it is recommended that weight loss therapy should include an intervention such as exercise training (ET) to minimize bone loss. The purpose of this study was to determine the independent and combined effects of weight loss and ET on bone metabolism in relation to bone mineral density (BMD) in obese older adults. One-hundred-seven older (age >65 years) obese (body mass index [BMI] ≥ 30  kg/m(2) ) adults were randomly assigned to a control group, diet group, exercise group, and diet-exercise group for 1 year. Body weight decreased in the diet (-9.6%) and diet-exercise (-9.4%) groups, not in the exercise (-1%) and control (-0.2%) groups (between-group p  <  0.001). However, despite comparable weight loss, bone loss at the total hip was relatively less in the diet-exercise group (-1.1%) than in the diet group (-2.6%), whereas BMD increased in the exercise group (1.5%) (between-group p  <  0.001). Serum C-terminal telopeptide (CTX) and osteocalcin concentrations increased in the diet group (31% and 24%, respectively), whereas they decreased in the exercise group (-13% and -15%, respectively) (between-group p  <  0.001). In contrast, similar to the control group, serum CTX and osteocalcin concentrations did not change in the diet-exercise group. Serum procollagen propeptide concentrations decreased in the exercise group (-15%) compared with the diet group (9%) (p  =  0.04). Serum leptin and estradiol concentrations decreased in the diet (-25% and -15%, respectively) and diet-exercise (-38% and -13%, respectively) groups, not in the exercise and control groups (between-group p  =  0.001). Multivariate analyses revealed that changes in lean body mass (β  =  0.33), serum osteocalcin (β  = -0.24), and one-repetition maximum (1-RM) strength (β  =  0.23) were independent predictors of changes in hip BMD (all p  <  0.05). In conclusion, the addition of ET to weight loss therapy among obese older adults prevents weight loss-induced increase in bone turnover and attenuates weight loss-induced reduction in hip BMD despite weight loss-induced decrease in bone-active hormones.

Exercise and Bone Mass in Adults

Sports Med.  2009; 39(6):439-68 (ISSN: 0112-1642)

Guadalupe-Grau A; Fuentes T; Guerra B; Calbet JA
Department of Physical Education, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Canary Islands, Spain.

There is a substantial body of evidence indicating that exercise prior to the pubertal growth spurt stimulates bone growth and skeletal muscle hypertrophy to a greater degree than observed during growth in non-physically active children. Bone mass can be increased by some exercise programmes in adults and the elderly, and attenuate the losses in bone mass associated with aging. This review provides an overview of cross-sectional and longitudinal studies performed to date involving training and bone measurements.

Cross-sectional studies show in general that exercise modalities requiring high forces and/or generating high impacts have the greatest osteogenic potential. Several training methods have been used to improve bone mineral density (BMD) and content in prospective studies. Not all exercise modalities have shown positive effects on bone mass. For example, unloaded exercise such as swimming has no impact on bone mass, while walking or running has limited positive effects. It is not clear which training method is superior for bone stimulation in adults, although scientific evidence points to a combination of high-impact (i.e. jumping) and weight-lifting exercises. Exercise involving high impacts, even a relatively small amount, appears to be the most efficient for enhancing bone mass, except in postmenopausal women.

Several types of resistance exercise have been tested also with positive results, especially when the intensity of the exercise is high and the speed of movement elevated. A handful of other studies have reported little or no effect on bone density. However, these results may be partially attributable to the study design, intensity and duration of the exercise protocol, and the bone density measurement techniques used.

Studies performed in older adults show only mild increases, maintenance or just attenuation of BMD losses in postmenopausal women, but net changes in BMD relative to control subjects who are losing bone mass are beneficial in decreasing fracture risk. Older men have been less studied than women, and although it seems that men may respond better than their female counterparts, the experimental evidence for a dimorphism based on sex in the osteogenic response to exercise in the elderly is weak. A randomized longitudinal study of the effects of exercise on bone mass in elderly men and women is still lacking. It remains to be determined if elderly females need a different exercise protocol compared with men of similar age.

Impact and resistance exercise should be advocated for the prevention of osteoporosis. For those with osteoporosis, weight-bearing exercise in general, and resistance exercise in particular, as tolerated, along with exercise targeted to improve balance, mobility and posture, should be recommended to reduce the likelihood of falling and its associated morbidity and mortality. Additional randomized controlled trials are needed to determine the most efficient training loads depending on age, sex, current bone mass and training history for improvement of bone mass

Cryotherapy (Ice) – 2 Articles

Intense Exercise, Muscle Soreness, Recovery, and Anti-inflammatories

Rehab Deb’s Comments: One of the most important bits of this report is something I’ve been reading more and more research regarding, and that is that nsaids (non-steroidal anti-inflammatories) stifle the healing process. I have also read several reports regarding the same and ice. Nsaids in animal medicine include Previcox, Deramaxx, Rimadyl, Metacam, etc…and for humans include Advil, Ibuprofen, Motrin, Tylenol, Aspirin, Aleve (sodium naproxen), etc…Does this mean to cut them out altogether? NO…it means think about the application, and possibly combine smaller doses of several analgesics, depending on the issue, rather than higher and continuous doses of nsaids.
This is only one suggestion.
Ultimately this should be discussed with the medical practitioner who prescribed the meds in the first place. There are other reasons to minimize nsaids and use Tramadol and/or Gabapentin and/or other analgesics to alleviate pain for the short run while building muscle to support damaged joints. Many practitioners are aware of using these other drugs, and while they may not know about this more recent news regarding nsaids delaying healing and muscle growth, which came out of human sport science, vets seem to be interested in the information when it is presented to them.

Article from Dr. Gabe Mirkin’s Fitness and Health E-Zine
May 6, 2012

How to Recover from Muscle Soreness Caused by Intense Exercise

Muscle soreness should be part of every exercise program.  If you don’t exercise intensely enough on one day to have sore muscles on the next, you will not gain maximum fitness and you are also losing out on many of the health benefits of exercise. The benefits of exercise are much greater with intense exercise than with casual exercising.

You must damage your muscles to make them grow and become stronger.  When muscles heal, they are stronger than they were before you damaged them. All athletes train by “stressing and recovering”. On one day, they take a hard workout in which they feel their muscles burning.  Eight to 24 hours after they finish this intense exercise, their muscles start to feel sore. This is called Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). Then they take easy workouts until the soreness is gone, which means that their muscles have healed.
DOMS IS CAUSED BY MUSCLE DAMAGE. Muscles are made up of fibers. The fibers are made up of a series of protein blocks called sarcomeres that are lined in a long chain. When you stretch a muscle, you stretch apart the sarcomeres in the chain. When sarcomeres are stretched too far, they tear.  Your body
treats these tears in the same way that it treats all injuries, by a process called inflammation.  Eight to 24 hours after an intense workout, you suffer swelling, stiffness and pain.

The most beneficial  intense exercise program  is:
* severe enough to cause muscle pain on the next day, and
* usually allows you to recover almost completely within 48 hours.

ACTIVE, NOT PASSIVE, RECOVERY:  When athletes feel soreness in their muscles, they rarely take days off.  Neither should you. Keeping sore muscles moving makes them more fibrous and tougher when they heal, so you can withstand greater forces and more intense workouts on your hard days.  Plan to go at low intensity for as many days as it takes for the soreness to go away. Most athletes try to work out just hard enough so that they recover and are ready for their next hard workout in 48 hours.

TIMING MEALS TO RECOVER FASTER:  You do not need to load extra food to recover faster. Taking in too much food fills your muscle cells with fat, and extra fat in cells blocks the cell’s ability to take in and use sugar. Sugar is the main source of energy for your muscles during intense exercise. Using sugar to drive your muscles helps them to move faster and with more strength. Timing of meals is more important than how much food you eat. Eating protein- and carbohydrate-containing foods helps you recover faster, and the best time to start eating is as soon as you finish a hard workout. At rest, muscles are inactive. Almost no sugar enters the resting muscle cell from the bloodstream (J. Clin. Invest. 1971;50: 2715-2725). Almost all cells in your body usually require insulin to drive sugar into their cells. However during exercise your muscles (and your brain) can take sugar into their cells without needing insulin.  Exercising muscles are also incredibly sensitive to insulin and take up sugar into their cells at a rapid rate.  This effect lasts maximally for up to an hour after you finish exercising and disappears almost completely in around 17 hours.  The best time to eat for recovery is when your cells are maximally responsive to insulin, and that is within a short  time after you finish exercising. Not only does insulin drive sugar into muscle cells, it also drives in protein building blocks, called amino acids.  The sugar replaces the fuel for muscle cells. The protein hastens repair of damaged muscle.  Waiting to eat for more than an hour after finishing an intense workout delays recovery.

WHAT TO EAT AFTER YOUR INTENSE WORKOUTS: Fatigue is caused by low levels of sugar, protein, water and salt.  You can replace all of these with ordinary foods and drinks. If you are a vegetarian, you can replace your protein with combinations of grains and beans. You can replace carbohydrates by eating
virtually any fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, seeds and nuts. A recovery meal for a vegetarian could include corn, beans, water, bread, and fruits, nuts and vegetables.  If you prefer animal tissue, you can get your protein from fish, poultry,or meat.   Special sports drinks and sports supplements are made from ordinary foods and therefore offer no advantage whatever over regular foods.

BODY MASSAGE:  Many older studies have shown that massage does not help you recover faster from DOMS. Recently, researchers at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario showed that deep massage after an intense workout causes muscles to enlarge and grow new mitochondria (Science Translational
Medicine, published online Feb, 2012). This is amazing. Enlarging and adding mitochondria can help you run faster, lift heavier weights, and even prevent heart attacks and certain cancers.

NSAIDS DELAY DOMS RECOVERY:  Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), such as ibuprofen, may help relieve pain, but they also can block muscle repair and delay healing.

HOT BATHS:  Most research shows that a hot bath is not much better than doing nothing in helping muscles recover from exercise (European Journal of Applied Physiology, March 2006)

COLD OR ICE BATHS:  A recent review of 17 small trials, involving 366 participants, showed a minor decrease in DOMS with ice water baths.  They found “little quality research” on the subject and “no consistent method of cold water immersion” (Cochrane Library, published online February 15, 2012).  Cold
water immersion can reduce swelling associated with injury, but has not been proven to speed the healing of DOMS.

Surgeons Report Two New Approaches to Lessen Postoperative Pain

(Taken from ScienceDaily.com, intended for human medicine audience, however the principles are good and some are interchangeable. I’m also pretty sure this isn’t “new” news…Italics mine)

Oct. 8, 2013 — New combinations of postoperative pain treatment decreased both pain and the use of narcotic pain relievers according to two studies presented this week at the 2013 Clinical Congress of the American College of Surgeons. One pain treatment utilized the simple but nonstandard application of ice packs after major abdominal operations in patients, and the other treatment was a prolonged drug delivery method using nanotechnology in animals.

Past research has shown that postoperative pain is often under-treated  The standard pain treatment after most major (human) operations is narcotics, also called opioids, such as morphine. However, these medicines have many possible side effects, including sleepiness, constipation, and — when used long term — the risk of drug dependence. (we don’t see this issue in veterinary medicine, not in the same way, so  for now don’t worry about your pet becoming an addict!)

“A growing body of scientific evidence shows that narcotics may not be the best way to control pain,” said the principal investigator of the ice pack study, Viraj A. Master, MD, PhD, FACS, associate professor of urology at Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta. “We now know that it is more effective to use combination treatments that reduce the amount of narcotics needed.

New use for ice following open abdominal procedures

Multiple studies have found that cryotherapy — application of ice to the surgical wound — is safe and effective at reducing pain after some types of operations, such as orthopedic procedures. However, researchers have not studied the use of cryotherapy in patients undergoing major, “open” (large-incision) abdominal operations, Dr. Master explained.

For the Emory study, Dr. Master and his colleagues compared the effect on postoperative pain of applying soft ice packs to the incision area after open abdominal operations (27 patients), versus no ice application (28 patients).

Patients in the cryotherapy group applied ice packs to the wound at desired intervals for at least 24 hours. They also had the option of taking prescribed opioids, whereas the other group received only opioids for pain relief. Twice a day the patients rated their pain intensity on a line indicating a range from no pain (zero) to severe pain (100).

The results showed that patients who used ice packs reported significantly less pain than those who did not ice their surgical wounds. On average, the cryotherapy group had about 50 percent less pain on the first and third days after the operation compared with the no-ice control group, according to the investigators. In addition, on the first postoperative day, the cryotherapy group used 22.5 percent less opioid pain medication than controls, while some patients who iced reportedly used no narcotics.

According to Dr. Master, surgeons should recommend that their patients who have open abdominal operations intermittently apply ice packs to the surgical wound, removing the ice when it becomes too cold. “An ice pack,” he said, “is safe and inexpensive, gives the patient a sense of empowerment because it is self-care, and doesn’t require high-tech devices.”

Prolonged delivery of lidocaine effective in animals

The pain treatment utilized in the second study used a high-tech device — nanoparticles — to create a controlled-release delivery system for the nonopioid numbing medication lidocaine. Although the effects of lidocaine injections usually are short-lived, nanotechnology allowed researchers at Houston Methodist Research Institute to extend the drug’s delivery time so that pain relief lasted all seven days of the study.

Led by Jeffrey L. Van Eps, MD, a research associate at the institute and general surgery resident at Houston Methodist Hospital, the research team developed an injectable hydrogel containing lidocaine. The gel also held microscopic spheres of a biodegradable polymer called polylactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA), which the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved for drug delivery. This polymer acts as an “envelope” for nanoparticles — molecular-sized structures — of the mineral silica, whose spongelike holes take up the lidocaine gel, Dr. Van Eps explained.

“Nanotechnology with PLGA makes an ideal drug delivery system because we can tailor the nanoparticles to allow prolonged delivery,” Dr. Van Eps said. He said that this method re-duces or avoids side effects.
After first testing their lidocaine delivery system in the laboratory, Dr. Van Eps’ team obtained results in an animal model of postoperative pain. In groups of rats under different experimental conditions, the investigators rated the animals’ pain by measuring their withdrawal response to mechanical force applied around the surgical wound.

Rats that received lidocaine gel through the novel delivery system needed twice the amount of force to elicit a pain response compared with control rats that received no pain medication after the incision, the researchers reported. Using this same technique of measuring the pain response, the investigators reported that the lidocaine gel also was superior to daily treatment with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) alone.

The best study results were seen with combination therapy using lidocaine gel and daily NSAIDs. This combination therapy reportedly showed equivalent effect to daily opioid narcotic treatment by mechanical-force withdrawal testing and superior results by daily scoring of pain-related adaptive behaviors. This finding is important because it shows that the experimental drug delivery system is not inferior to standard opioid treatment of pain, according to Dr. Van Eps.

Studies in larger animals will take place before the research team can test this therapy in patients, he said. Yet he called the new technology an “exciting potential treatment of post-surgical pain, the largest barrier to successful postoperative care.”

The research team developed and is testing the drug delivery system in the Houston Methodist Research Institute’s Surgical Advanced Technology Lab, which was created to accelerate transition of new products to the clinic.

The above story is based on materials provided by American College of Surgeons, via EurekAlert!, a service of AAAS.

Nutrition – 7 Articles

Omega-3’s: Q&A plus a reminder that we DON’T need to supplement with other Omegas…We get plenty in most of our diets

SNI Interviews Omega-3 Fatty Acid Expert Doug Bibus PhD

SEPTEMBER 12, 2012 3:45 PM 0 COMMENTS

SNI: Folks talk constantly about having the proper ratio between omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids. What is the ‘ideal’ ratio (if it exists) and why?

Dr. Bibus: This is a common but very good question. With the excessive consumption of omega 6 largely as soybean oil in the standard American diet, current dietary ratios of omega 6 to omega 3 are from 10 to 20:1. Large amounts of omega 6 in the face of smaller amounts of omega 3, reduce our bodies own metabolism omega 3, facilitating omega 3 deficiency. See attached figure from Holman circa 1964 (Slide #3 in PPT). Ideally if we can reduce our dietary ratio to 1:1 by limiting intake of omega 6 and/or increasing omega 3 we can get significant conversion of omega 3. I typically state the ‘ideal’ dietary omega 6 to omega 3 ratio to be less than 5 to 1. Below a 5 to 1 ratio we begin to see decent conversion of omega 3 and our blood levels of omega 3 increase to more healthy levels. Dr Bill Lands has made food selection simple for determining your omega 3 balance. You can find his Omega 3-6 Balance Score program at www.FastLearner.org.

SNI: Of the omega 3 fats, what are the similarities and differences vis a vis their benefits between EPA and DHA? Also, what’s the scoop on DPA?

Dr. Bibus: All long chain omega 3 like EPA, DPA and DHA have anti-inflammatory characteristics. EPA however tends to be touted more as the anti-inflammatory omega 3 as it is converted into series 3 eicosanoids or hormone like compounds that have much lower inflammatory potentials than those derived from omega 6. DHA is typically found in membranes or the bags that surround our cells. DHA is thought to be a major player in how our cells communicate through membrane interactions of expression of genes or our DNA. DHA is also important for glucose uptake in muscle as insulin sentivity of muscle is predicted by muscle content of DHA. Our eyes, brain and liver have fairly high levels of DHA. DHA makes up the majority of the fatty acids in he retina and about 20% in brain. DPA is the exciting ‘new’ omega 3 fatty acid. DPA has always been ‘around’ but research is increasingly recognizing its significance. It is structural similar to DHA with just 1 less double bond. We tend to store twice the amount of DPA in our blood than EPA and about half as much DPA as DHA. While DPA is found only in small amounts in our diet, unless you are eating Menhaden or taking sources of menhaden oil, its significant presence in the blood comments on it potential for health. Several studies have reported blood levels of DPA to be as predictive or more predictive of cardiovascular risk than EPA and DHA yet this nutrient is often ignored when we talk about omega 3. DPA is in fact often referred to as “other” omega 3 on supplement labels. There is an increasing awareness around DPA and its health benefits so look for new products touting DPA in your nutrition stores soon.

SNI: I have an acquaintance who takes 10 grams of fish oil daily. Can you take ‘too much?’ And if so, what are the side effects? What is the ‘ideal’ dose of fish oil per day?

Dr. Bibus: I often take 10 grams per day which represents about 10% of my normal daily fat intake. Can you take too much…from a practical standpoint no. Arctic populations living on marine based diets consume on average 100-200 grams of marine based fat per day from fish, seal and whale blubber. These populations have very low levels of heart disease but do have a tendency to bleed longer. Bleeding is NOT a problem for people taking fish oil supplements. The FDA conservatively states that up to 3g or 3000mg of EPA and DHA are safe to consume each day. For standard fish oil this is about 10grams per day. There are no real side effects to fish oil consumption. If you are taking medications to prevent clotting or have a clotting disorder you should talk to your physician about fish oil before you start taking it. There is no federal recommendation for how much long chain omega 3 (EPA, DPA and DHA) should be in our daily diet. I advocate consuming 2000mg or 2g of EPA, DPA and DHA combined per day. This is about 7 – 1gram capsules of standard fish oil or 2-3 grams of concentrated fish oil. Why 2000mg? This is the amount required to raise our blood values of omega 3 to around 50% omega 3 in HUFA (highly unsaturated fatty acids) which is correlated with a 50% reduction in the incidence of death.

SNI: Many middle-aged men take both aspirin and fish oil. Inasmuch as both increase clotting time, should these two be taken concurrently?

Dr. Bibus: Taking aspirin and fish oil both reduce clotting time which is a GOOD thing. In America, our high omega 6 diet causes us to clot too much. Salicylates or aspirin has many health benefits outside of reducing clotting. Regular aspirin consumption has been also reported to reduce cancer risk. If you have a clotting disorder you should consult with your doctor before starting any fish oil regimen.

SNI: Why do some fish oil products taste so ‘fishy’ and smell like a wharf in San Francisco while others seem to be less stinky?

Dr. Bibus: The fishy smell from fish comes from certain nitrogen containing compounds (tertiary amines) and also from oxidized omega 3. There are many different types of oxidized fatty acids often called aldehydes. One type in particular can be smelled by our nose at relative small concentrations, helping our noses determine good from bad fish oils. That fishy smell comes from break down or degradation products of fish oil. Good clean fish oil will have a very slight to no fishy aroma. Fish oil processing helps clean up fish oil and proper storage and handling if fish oil, once made, are critical for keeping an oil healthy and oxidtaively stable. A general rule of thumb is that if an oil smells bad it is bad and should be avoided. Oxidized fatty acids are not healthy for u to consume. Happily most oil producers today do a good job at produce stable oils. There are still a few bad actors but luckily your nose can show you the way!

SNI: What new projects do you have on the horizon? Tell the SNI audience please.

Dr. Bibus: I am really excited to see a number of new products focused on athletic performance in the omega 3 area. Also a number of DPA enriched omega 3 products will soon be entering the market place. A company called Omega Protein has learned how to enrich DPA and are now selling omega 3 oils with up to 10% DPA. There are also a host of omega 3 delivery systems that are out there now. Emulsions are particularly interesting to me as they offer omega 3 in a form that is readily absorbed. A number of fish oils are now concentrated which helps reduce the overall pill count to achieve 2-3 g per day intakes of long chain omega 3.

About Dr. Bibus – Dr. Doug Bibus received his BS from Mankato State University and earned his MS in nutrition and Ph.D in nutritional biochemistry from the University of Minnesota. Dr. Bibus is a community faculty member at the University of Minnesota’s Center for Spirituality and Healing and a researcher in the area of fatty acid biochemistry and nutrition. Dr. Bibus is considered as one of the top omega 3 experts in the world, a distinction that stems from his work at the academic lab (Professor Ralph T. Holman) that invented the omega 3 terminology as well as discovered the metabolism and definitive essentiality of omega 3. Dr Bibus’s research interests include the role of essential fatty acids in human and animal nutrition, the role of omega 3 fatty acids in attenuating the inflammatory response, the application of fatty acids in the treatment of disease and the impact of oxidative stress on performance animals and humans. Dr. Bibus is a member of The American Oil Chemists’ Society, The American Chemical Society, The Society for Critical Care Medicine and The International Society for the Study of Fatty Acids and Lipids. He has been a two-time winner of the American Chemical Society’s Award in Analytical Chemistry. Dr. Bibus is a foundation board member for AOCS and chairman of the health and nutrition division and award committee.

Grains, Gluten Sensitivity, and Misconceptions

Presentation for Austin Functional Medicine group, taped in three parts and posted to YouTube. I attend most of these lectures, and if you’re interested, a link to the site is on the YouTube page.

I can almost guarantee this presentation contains information you did not previously know.  Chekkit…

 

Why Fish Is Better Than Supplements: Omega-3s from Fish Vs. Fish Oil Pills Better at Maintaining Blood Pressure in Mouse Model

Mar. 5, 2013 — Omega-3 fatty acids found in oily fish may have diverse health-promoting effects, potentially protecting the immune, nervous, and cardiovascular systems.

But how the health effects of one such fatty acid — docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) — works remains unclear, in part because its molecular signaling pathways are only now being understood.

Toshinori Hoshi, PhD, professor of Physiology, at the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, and colleagues showed, in two papers out this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, how fish oils help lower blood pressure via vasodilation at ion channels. In vascular smooth muscle cells, such as those that line blood vessels, ion channels that span the outer membrane of a cell to let such ions as sodium, calcium, and potassium in and out, are critical to maintaining proper vessel pressure.

The researchers found that DHA rapidly and reversibly activates these channels by increasing currents by up to 20 fold. DHA lowers blood pressure in anesthetized wild type mice but not in mice genetically engineered without a specific ion channel subunit.

In comparison, the team found that a dietary supplement, DHA ethyl ester, found in most fish oil pills fails to activate the same channels, and even antagonizes the positive effect of DHA from natural sources, on the cells. The DHA ethyl ester seems to compete with the natural form of DHA for binding sites on the ion channel.

The team concluded that these channels have receptors for long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, and that DHA — unlike its ethyl ester cousin — activate the channels and lower blood pressure.

The findings have practical implications for the use of omega-3 fatty acids as nutraceuticals for the general public and also for critically ill patients who may receive omega-3-enriched formulas as part of their nutrition.

Coauthor Michael Bauer from Jena University Hospital in Germany, who studies sepsis in a clinical setting, says the findings may encourage physicians to have a closer look at the specific formulations given to sepsis patients as they may contain either the free omega-3 acid or the ester.

The findings also underscore the importance of obtaining omega-3 fatty acids from natural food sources such as oily fish.

The study was supported, in part, by the National Institutes of Health (R01GM057654), the German Research Foundation, and Natural Science Foundation of China.

The above story is reprinted from materials provided byUniversity of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Journal References:

  1. T. Hoshi, B. Wissuwa, Y. Tian, N. Tajima, R. Xu, M. Bauer, S. H. Heinemann, S. Hou. Omega-3 fatty acids lower blood pressure by directly activating large-conductance Ca2 -dependent K channelsProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2013; DOI:10.1073/pnas.1221997110
  2. T. Hoshi, Y. Tian, R. Xu, S. H. Heinemann, S. Hou.Mechanism of the modulation of BK potassium channel complexes with different auxiliary subunit compositions by the omega-3 fatty acid DHA.Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2013; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1222003110

From ScienceDaily

This is a lot like the cancer drug that I decided not to take after 6 mos of taking it, Tamoxifen. My bc is ER & PR positive, fed by hormones, and Tamoxifen blocks binding sites for estrogen on cells. There are plants that contain a lot of phytoestrogens, and they essentially can do the same thing, although not as powerfully, presumably.
There are also some other supplements and pharmaceuticals that can mess with the body’s ability to self-produce, similar to the findings in this study…like thyroid meds, or supplementing DHEA has that effect, and there are others.
This is an interesting and beneficial discovery.
Did you know that buffalo, for instance, and most grass-fed animal protein contains as much Omega 3 as fish oil?
I AM a firm believer in getting the most we can from food sources, as we were designed to do, yet I also realize we have chosen to live much differently in the past few decades…centuries…than we did for thousands of years. So, the movement back to grass-fed animal protein and more fish is a great move, and the idea of getting outside is great, but in the meantime, I see substantial reason to supplement with some fish oil and Vit D…questions remain regarding how much in contrast to other decidedly beneficial lifestyle actions we are taking. If I reduce overall system inflammation, then my need for Omega 3’s reduces from high therapeutic amounts, for instance.-RehabDeb

 

Omega-3s Inhibit Breast Cancer Tumor Growth, Study Finds

Feb. 21, 2013 — A lifelong diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids can inhibit growth of breast cancer tumours by 30 per cent, according to new research from the University of Guelph.

The study, published recently in theJournal of Nutritional Biochemistry, is believed to be the first to provide unequivocal evidence that omega-3s reduce cancer risk.

“It’s a significant finding,” said David Ma, a professor in Guelph’s Department of Human Health and Nutritional Sciences, and one of the study’s authors.

“We show that lifelong exposure to omega-3s has a beneficial role in disease prevention — in this case, breast cancer prevention. What’s important is that we have proven that omega-3s are the driving force and not something else.”

Breast cancer remains the most common form of cancer in women worldwide and is the second leading cause of female cancer deaths.

Advocates have long believed diet may significantly help in preventing cancer. But epidemiological and experimental studies to back up such claims have been lacking, and human studies have been inconsistent, Ma said.

“There are inherent challenges in conducting and measuring diet in such studies, and it has hindered our ability to firmly establish linkages between dietary nutrients and cancer risk,” he said.

“So we’ve used modern genetic tools to address a classic nutritional question.”

For their study, the researchers created a novel transgenic mouse that both produces omega-3 fatty acids and develops aggressive mammary tumours. The team compared those animals to mice genetically engineered only to develop the same tumours.

“This model provides a purely genetic approach to investigate the effects of lifelong omega-3s exposure on breast cancer development,” Ma said.

“To our knowledge, no such approach has been used previously to investigate the role of omega-3s and breast cancer.”

Mice producing omega-3s developed only two-thirds as many tumours — and tumours were also 30-per-cent smaller — as compared to the control mice.

“The difference can be solely attributed to the presence of omega-3s in the transgenic mice — that’s significant,” Ma said.

“The fact that a food nutrient can have a significant effect on tumour development and growth is remarkable and has considerable implications in breast cancer prevention.”

Known as an expert in how fats influence health and disease, Ma hopes the study leads to more research on using diet to reduce cancer risk and on the benefits of healthy living.

“Prevention is an area of growing importance. We are working to build a better planet, and that includes better lifestyle and diet,” he said.

“The long-term consequences of reducing disease incidence can have a tremendous effect on the health-care system.”

The study also involved lead author Mira MacLennan, a former U of G graduate student who is now studying medicine at Dalhousie University; U of G pathobiology professor Geoffrey Wood; former Guelph graduate students Shannon Clarke and Kate Perez; William Muller from McGill University; and Jing Kang from Harvard Medical School.

Funding for this research came from the Canadian Breast Cancer Research Alliance/Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Canada Foundation for Innovation and the Ontario Research Fund.

Fish Oil Component Reduces Brain Damage in Newborns, Mouse Study Suggests

Feb. 20, 2013 — Research conducted by a team of scientists from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and Dr. Nicolas Bazan, Boyd Professor and Director of the Neuroscience Center of Excellence at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, found the novel use of a component of fish oil reduced brain trauma in newborn mice. The study reports that neonatal brain damage decreased by about 50% when a triglyceride lipid emulsion containing docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) was injected within two hours of the onset of ischemic stroke.

The study compared the effectiveness of emulsions with two omega-3 fatty acids — DHA and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) — as well as optimal doses and therapeutic window. The researchers found that DHA provided protection while EPA did not. The therapeutic window ranged from 90 minutes prior to several hours after with the optimal window for treatment 0 — 2 hours. There was no protective effect at hour 4.

DHA is an essential omega-3-fatty acid and is vital for proper brain function. It is also necessary for the development of the nervous system, including vision. Moreover, omega-3 fatty acids, found in cold water fatty fish, including salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, shellfish, and herring, are part of a healthy diet that helps lower the risk of heart disease. DHA has potent anti-inflammatory effects. Since inflammation is at the root of many chronic diseases, DHA treatment has been widely demonstrated to have beneficial effects in patients with coronary heart disease, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, sepsis, cancer, dry eye disease, and age-related macular degeneration. Its potential benefit in stroke is now being documented.

EPA is also an omega-3 fatty acid found in coldwater fish. EPA can prevent the blood from clotting easily. Often paired with DHA in fish oil supplements, these fatty acids are known to reduce pain and swelling.

Ischemic strokes, representing about 87% of strokes, result from loss of blood flow to an area of the brain due to a blockage such as a clot or atherosclerosis. The damage includes an irreversibly injured core of tissue at the site of the blockage. The area of tissue surrounding the core, called the penumbra, is also damaged but potentially salvageable. The penumbra has a limited life span and appears to undergo irreversible damage within a few hours unless blood flow is reestablished and neuroprotective therapy is administered. A cascade of chemicals floods the tissue along with restored blood flow, including damaging free radicals and pro-inflammatory enzymes which can cause further damage and cell death.

Administering clot-busting drugs (thrombolysis) is currently the only treatment for ischemic stroke. But due to a narrow therapeutic window and complexity of administration, only 3-5% of patients typically benefit from thrombolysis.

Dr. Bazan’s group at the LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans Neuroscience Center of Excellence has increasingly shown that DHA is a potentially powerful treatment for stroke for nearly ten years. His study published in 2011 found DHA triggered production of Neuroprotectin D1 (NPD1), a naturally occurring neuroprotective molecule in the brain derived from DHA and discovered by Dr. Bazan. Not only did DHA treatment salvage stroke-damaged brain tissue that would have died, its repair mechanisms rendered some areas indistinguishable from normal tissue by 7 days.

“Stroke is a brain attack that each year kills 130,000 Americans,” notes Dr. Bazan. “Strokes can occur at any age, including in newborns, with long-term and devastating consequences. DHA is already widely consumed as a dietary supplement in the US, and from a therapeutic point of view, we can now see a light at the end of the tunnel.”

The researchers conclude that the findings suggest a need for further studies to determine if acute injection of these emulsions could be neuroprotective after stroke injury in humans. They also suggest that the emulsion rich in DHA will prove to be a novel and important therapy to treat stroke and could decrease mortality and increase long-term functional recovery after stroke in humans of different ages. The paper’s senior author is Richard Deckelbaum, MD, director of the Institute of Human Nutrition at Columbia’s College of Physicians & Surgeons.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 795,000 Americans have a stroke each year, and stroke causes 1 in every 18 deaths. Stroke is also a leading cause of long-term disability. Louisiana is among the states with the highest prevalence of stroke. It has been estimated that the direct and indirect costs of stroke in the United States totaled nearly $74 billion in 2010. In addition, with an estimated incidence of 1 in 2300 to 5000 births, stroke is more likely to occur in the perinatal period than at other times in childhood. Ischemic stroke in newborns is a disorder associated with significant long-term neurologic impairment. Twenty to 60% of survivors exhibit long-term detrimental neuropsychological consequences which include mental retardation, cerebral palsy, and behavioral disorders.

Post from ScienceDaily.com

A Galaxy Within Us: Our Gut Microbiota and How It Can Be Programmed by Food

From ScienceDaily. com  Nov. 1, 2013 — Who would have thought that the human body contains over 10 times the amount of bacterial cells as human cells? These bacteria — now collectively called the gut microbiota — number in their trillions and are made up of more than a 1,000 different species most of which are beneficial in some way.

“Research is starting to show that the food we eat has a huge bearing on the composition of this collective and also that the profile of the collection of bacteria can be associated with a person’s health status,” explains Dr Paul Ross, Head of the Teagasc Food Research Programme and Principal Investigator at the Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre, Teagasc, Food Research Centre, Moorepark.

To the team at the Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre (APC), an SFI-funded CSET at Teagasc, Food Research Centre, Moorepark and at University College Cork, the study of the human microbiota has the potential to transform much of the thinking around basic human nutrition, gut health and disease prevention: “This has been made possible through developments made in DNA sequencing technology which has allowed the study of complex microbial communities such as the human gut microbiota, the majority of which cannot be cultured on an individual basis,” explains Dr Ross.

Although the composition of the microbiota is highly stable during adulthood, there are times when it can be highly dynamic — such as at the extremes of life, e.g., following birth, during inflammatory bowel conditions, gastrointestinal infection and in the elderly. Despite this stability, the microbiota also displays a high degree of interindividual variation reflecting differences in lifestyle, diet, host genetics, etc.

In a project called ELDERMET, a team of UCC/Teagasc scientists headed by Professor Paul O’Toole has recently profiled the faecal microbiota from elderly people in different residences including community, day-hospital, rehabilitation or long-term residential care locations.

This study found that the microbiota correlated with the residence location. “The results demonstrated that the individual microbiota of people in long-stay care was significantly less diverse than those that resided in the community,” explains Dr Ross. “In addition, these subjects were also clustered by diet by the same residence location and microbiota groupings. Interestingly, the separation of microbiota composition correlated significantly with health parameters in these individuals including measures of frailty, co-morbidity, nutritional status, markers of inflammation and with metabolites in faecal water.”

Taken together these data suggest that diet can programme the gut microbiota — the composition of which correlates with health status. Such a suggestion opens up great potential for the food industry in the design of food ingredients and supplements which may in the future shape the microbiota in a particular direction to correlate with an improved consumer health status. Interestingly, a related study called INFANTMET, funded by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and led by Professor Catherine Stanton at Teagasc Moorepark, is looking at the development of the gut microbiota in early life as a consequence of breast feeding.

And I add, thankfully, research has BEEN showing this info for quite a while and NOW it’s reaching a broader base & large industries are starting to pay heed-!

Intestinal Bacteria Linked to Rheumatoid Arthritis

From ScienceDaily. com Nov. 5, 2013 — Researchers have linked a species of intestinal bacteria known as Prevotella copri to the onset of rheumatoid arthritis, the first demonstration in humans that the chronic inflammatory joint disease may be mediated in part by specific intestinal bacteria. The new findings by laboratory scientists and clinical researchers in rheumatology at NYU School of Medicine add to the growing evidence that the trillions of microbes in our body play an important role in regulating our health.

Using sophisticated DNA analysis to compare gut bacteria from fecal samples of patients with rheumatoid arthritis and healthy individuals, the researchers found that P. copri was more abundant in patients newly diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis than in healthy individuals or patients with chronic, treated rheumatoid arthritis. Moreover, the overgrowth of P. copri was associated with fewer beneficial gut bacteria belonging to the genera Bacteroides.

“Studies in rodent models have clearly shown that the intestinal microbiota contribute significantly to the causation of systemic autoimmune diseases,” says Dan R. Littman, MD, PhD, the Helen L. and Martin S. Kimmel Professor of Pathology and Microbiology and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator.
“Our own results in mouse studies encouraged us to take a closer look at patients with rheumatoid arthritis, and we found this remarkable and surprising association,” says Dr. Littman, whose basic science laboratory at NYU School of Medicine’s Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine collaborated with clinical investigators led by Steven Abramson, MD, senior vice president and vice dean for education, faculty, and academic affairs; the Frederick H. King Professor of Internal Medicine; chair of the Department of Medicine; and professor of medicine and pathology at NYU School of Medicine.

“At this stage, however, we cannot conclude that there is a causal link between the abundance of P. copri and the onset of rheumatoid arthritis,” Dr. Littman says. “We are developing new tools that will hopefully allow us to ask if this is indeed the case.”

The new findings, reported today in the open-access journal eLife, were inspired by previous research in Dr. Littman’s laboratory, collaborating with Harvard Medical School investigators, using mice genetically predisposed to rheumatoid arthritis, which resist the disease if kept in sterile environments, but show signs of joint inflammation when exposed to otherwise benign gut bacteria known as segmented filamentous bacteria.

Rheumatoid arthritis, an autoimmune disease that attacks joint tissue and causes painful, often debilitating stiffness and swelling, affects 1.3 million Americans. It strikes twice as many women as men and its cause remains unknown although genetic and environmental factors are thought to play a role.

The human gut is home to hundreds of species of beneficial bacteria, including P. copri, which ferment undigested carbohydrates to fuel the body and keep harmful bacteria in check. The immune system, primed to attack foreign microbes, possesses the extraordinary ability to distinguish benign or beneficial bacteria from pathogenic bacteria. This ability may be compromised, however, when the gut’s microbial ecosystem is thrown off balance.

“Expansion of P. copri in the intestinal microbiota exacerbates colonic inflammation in mouse models and may offer insight into the systemic autoimmune response seen in rheumatoid arthritis,” says Randy S. Longman, MD, PhD, a post-doctoral fellow in Dr. Littman’s laboratory and a gastroenterologist at Weill-Cornell, and an author on the new study. Exactly how this expansion relates to disease remains unclear even in animal models, he says.

Why P. copri growth seems to take off in newly diagnosed patients with rheumatoid arthritis is also unclear, the researchers say. Both environmental influences, such as diet and genetic factors can shift bacterial populations within the gut, which may set off a systemic autoimmune attack. Adding to the mystery, P. copri extracted from stool samples of newly diagnosed patients appears genetically distinct from P. copri found in healthy individuals, the researchers found.

To determine if particular bacterial species correlate with rheumatoid arthritis, the researchers sequenced the so-called 16S gene on 44 fecal DNA samples from newly diagnosed patients with rheumatoid arthritis prior to immune-suppressive treatment; 26 samples from patients with chronic, treated rheumatoid arthritis; 16 samples from patients with psoriatic arthritis (characterized by red, flaky skin in conjunction with joint inflammation); and 28 samples from healthy individuals.

Seventy-five percent of stool samples from patients newly diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis carried P. copri compared to 21.4% of samples from healthy individuals; 11.5% from chronic, treated patients; and 37.5% from patients with psoriatic arthritis.

Rheumatoid arthritis is treated with an assortment of medications, including antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs like steroids, and immunosuppressive therapies that tame immune reactions. Little is understood about how these medications affect gut bacteria. This latest research offers an important clue, showing that treated patients with chronic rheumatoid arthritis carry smaller populations of P. copri. “It could be that certain treatments help stabilize the balance of bacteria in the gut,” says Jose U. Scher, MD, director of the Microbiome Center for Rheumatology and Autoimmunity at NYU Langone Medical Center’s Hospital for Joint Diseases, and an author on the new study. “Or it could be that certain gut bacteria favor inflammation.”

The researchers plan to validate their results in regions beyond New York, since gut flora can vary across geographical regions, and investigate whether the gut flora can be used as a biological marker to guide treatment. “We want to know if people with certain populations of gut bacteria respond better to certain treatment than others,” says Dr. Scher. Finally, they hope to study people before they develop rheumatoid arthritis to see whether overgrowth of P. copri is a cause or result of autoimmune attacks.

Laser Therapy (LLLT) – 3 Articles

The effect of 300 mW, 830 nm laser on chronic neck pain: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study.

Pain. 2006 Sep;124(1-2):201-10. Epub 2006 Jun 27.

Source

Castle Hill Medical Centre, 269-271 Old Northern Road, Castle Hill, NSW 2154, Australia. rtchow@bigpond.net.au

Abstract

A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of low-level laser therapy (LLLT) in 90 subjects with chronic neck pain was conducted with the aim of determining the efficacy of 300 mW, 830 nm laser in the management of chronic neck pain. Subjects were randomized to receive a course of 14 treatments over 7 weeks with either active or sham laser to tender areas in the neck. The primary outcome measure was change in a 10 cm Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) for pain. Secondary outcome measures included Short-Form 36 Quality-of-Life questionnaire (SF-36), Northwick Park Neck Pain Questionnaire (NPNQ), Neck Pain and Disability Scale (NPAD), the McGill Pain Questionnaire (MPQ) and Self-Assessed Improvement (SAI) in pain measured by VAS. Measurements were taken at baseline, at the end of 7 weeks’ treatment and 12 weeks from baseline. The mean VAS pain scores improved by 2.7 in the treated group and worsened by 0.3 in the control group (difference 3.0, 95% CI 3.8-2.1). Significant improvements were seen in the active group compared to placebo for SF-36-Physical Score (SF36 PCS), NPNQ, NPAD, MPQVAS and SAI. The results of the SF-36 – Mental Score (SF36 MCS) and other MPQ component scores (afferent and sensory) did not differ significantly between the two groups. Low-level laser therapy (LLLT), at the parameters used in this study, was efficacious in providing pain relief for patients with chronic neck pain over a period of 3 months.

PMID:

 

16806710 
[PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

Low level laser treatment of tendinopathy: a systematic review with meta-analysis.

Source

Centre for Physiotherapy Research, School of Physiotherapy, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. steve.tumilty@otago.ac.nz

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To assess the clinical effectiveness of Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) in the treatment of tendinopathy. Secondary objectives were to determine the relevance of irradiation parameters to outcomes, and the validity of current dosage recommendations for the treatment of tendinopathy.

BACKGROUND:

LLLT is proposed as a possible treatment for tendon injuries. However, the clinical effectiveness of this modality remains controversial, with limited agreement on the most efficacious dosage and parameter choices.

METHOD:

The following databases were searched from inception to 1(st) August 2008: MEDLINE, PubMed, CINAHL, AMED, EMBASE, All EBM reviews, PEDro (Physiotherapy Evidence Database), SCOPUS. Controlled clinical trials evaluating LLLT as a primary intervention for any tendinopathy were included in the review. Methodological quality was classified as: high (> or =6 out of 10 on the PEDro scale) or low (<6) to grade the strength of evidence. Accuracy and clinical appropriateness of treatment parameters were assessed using established recommendations and guidelines.

RESULTS:

Twenty-five controlled clinical trials met the inclusion criteria. There were conflicting findings from multiple trials: 12 showed positive effects and 13 were inconclusive or showed no effect. Dosages used in the 12 positive studies would support the existence of an effective dosage window that closely resembled current recommended guidelines. In two instances where pooling of data was possible, LLLT showed a positive effect size; in studies of lateral epicondylitis that scored > or =6 on the PEDro scale, participants’ grip strength was 9.59 kg higher than that of the control group; for participants with Achilles tendinopathy, the effect was 13.6 mm less pain on a 100 mm visual analogue scale.

CONCLUSION:

LLLT can potentially be effective in treating tendinopathy when recommended dosages are used. The 12 positive studies provide strong evidence that positive outcomes are associated with the use of current dosage recommendations for the treatment of tendinopathy.

PMID:

 19708800 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]

Mary Dyson, Laser Therapy Researcher

I have seen and heard Dr. Dyson present at two world laser conferences, and she does some fascinating work!

Quality of Life of Obese Dogs Improves –

Quality of Life of Obese Dogs Improves When They Lose Weight –

This is recent research conducted in the UK, where they estimate 1/3 of the dog population is obese. Study conducted by Waltham/Royal Canin.

Feb. 21, 2012 –

Researchers at the University of Liverpool have found that obese dogs that lose weight have an improved quality of life compared to those that don’t.

A study of 50 overweight dogs, comprising a mix of breeds and genders was undertaken by scientists at the University in collaboration with the University of Glasgow, Royal Canin and the WALTHAM Centre for Pet Nutrition.

How?

Owners completed a questionnaire to decide the health-related quality of life of their dog prior to weight loss. A follow-up questionnaire was completed by the owners of 30 dogs that successfully completed the weight loss programme, enabling changes in quality of life to be assessed.

A range of life quality factors were scored, including vitality, emotional disturbance, and pain. Quality of life of dogs which succeeded with their weight loss programme was also compared with those dogs that failed to lose weight successfully.

Results –

The results showed that quality of life improved in the dogs that had successfully lost weight. In particular, their vitality scores increased and the score for emotional disturbance and pain decreased. Moreover, the more body fat that the dog lost, the greater the improvement in vitality.

The research also found that dogs that failed to complete their weight loss programme had worse quality of life at the outset than those successfully losing weight, most notably worse vitality and greater emotional disturbance.

Dr Alex German, Director of the Royal Canin Weight Management Clinic at the University, said: “Obesity is a risk for many dogs, affecting not only their health but also their quality of life. This research indicates that weight loss can play an important role in keeping your dog both healthy and happy.”

Strategies for Combating Obesity –

Dr Penelope Morris, from the WALTHAM Centre for Pet Nutrition, added: “Strategies for combating obesity and keeping dogs fit and healthy include portion control, increased exercise, and diets specifically formulated for overweight pets.”

Established in 2004, the Royal Canin Weight Management Clinic at the University’s Small Animal Hospital, UK is the world’s first animal weight management referral clinic. It was set up to help tackle and prevent weight problems in animals such as dogs and cats.

Veterinary surgeons from any general practice in the UK can refer overweight animals to the clinic. The patients receive a thorough medical examination. Then they receive a specific dietary plan and exercise regimen to follow over several weeks.

Taken from ScienceDaily.com

Thoughts to Ponder –

The results showed that quality of life improved in the dogs that had successfully lost weight. In particular vitality scores increased and the score for emotional disturbance and pain decreased. Moreover, the more body fat that the dog lost, the greater the improvement in vitality.

And, interestingly, the study notes this: “The research also found that dogs that failed to complete their weight loss programme had worse quality of life at the outset than those successfully losing weight, most notably worse vitality and greater emotional disturbance.” …sort of as if the dogs failed the program and not that the owners were partners in this endeavor.

The dogs didn’t fail to complete the program, in reality. The study finding here denotes the close connection and potential issues within the human/animal psychology bond.

Pet Moods –

Lizzie the Golden is a lean and fit elderly dog in this photo. Calvin is working on becoming a dirigible, and he would eat until he passed out if someone let him!

If the lower-vitality dogs came into the study with possible lower quality of life, then I recommend evaluation of the home life of the human, too. Our pets reflect our moods. You may also look for mood changes in a pet to alert you to possible mood changes in their people!

The failed dogs notably had “worse quality of life at the outset” than the ones who ended up succeeding. Most compromised were their vitality and emotional status. We definitely pass our moods, demeanor, and worry onto our animals. Breathe peacefully with your pets 🙂

Contact me if you need a progressive and defined program to follow in order to lose fat and build supportive muscle. Or if you think you are dragging your pet into a dark mood abyss due to lifestyle changes and difficulties.

 

(Published February, 2012. Updated April 19, 2018)