Calcium…Not Just For Bones

Journal of the National Cancer Institute, The Associated Press, Mar. 19, 2002

Calcium intake of at least 700mg a day has recently been shown to reduce the risk of some types of cancer, including left side colon cancer (the last segment of the large intestine) in both women and men. This research is based on the data gathered from the 88,000 women in the Nurses Health Study and the 47,000 men in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. The latter found that those who got 700-800mg of calcium had a 40-50% decreased incidence of left-side colon cancer. The studies’ results obviously show that calcium supplementation is more beneficial than the narrow belief that it’s just for bone health. Please consult your Doctor of Chiropractic for proper advising on the dose and form of calcium best suited for your needs.


Modified Golf Swing May Reduce Back Injury?

It has been studied that of the 25 million golfers in America, up to 62% may suffer an injury related to the game. Low back pain is the most common injury in professional and amateur golfers and may be due to repetitive swing motion and poor mechanics. Many golfers believe that the more their shoulders rotate back during the backswing phase of a golf swing, the better their swing will be. This position places the spine under a great degree of stress, however. The above mentioned study illustrated the use of a more restricted backswing, incorporating a higher degree of shoulder activity not only reduced the odds of injury by eliminating excessive spinal rotation, but also did not harm performance levels!

Seven subjects were fitted with EMG electrodes recording muscle activity of the lumbar muscles, external oblique, latissimus dorsi and right pectoralis major muscles as they demonstrated their typical full recoil backswing (should rotating back at least 90 degrees with restricted hip rotation). Additionally, club head speed and accuracy was measured for performance. Later, the golfers had modified their swings to reduce the shoulder rotation and torque of the spine.

Results revealed that a backswing an average of 47 degrees less did not significantly affect club speed, stroke accuracy nor targeting of the club head. Significant changes were found in muscular activity though: 19% reduction in strain of the right oblique before impact, 12% reduction of the left lumbar during acceleration, 21% reduction of the right latissimus during activation, and 14% reduction of the left lumbar during follow-through. So not to worry, changing swing mechanics to reduce risks of injury will not compromise your chance to experience your best game yet!

Bulbalian R, Ball KA, Seaman DR, The short golf backswing, Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 2001:24(9), pp. 560-575


Manual Therapy More Effective Than Physiotherapy, Drugs for Neck Pain!

From the British Medical Journal:

As many of us know, neck problems account for considerable pain and stiffness that can lead to work absenteeism, disability and the use of health care resources. Various conservative interventions have been proposed for treating neck pain, but few scientific evaluations have included any analysis of their cost-effectiveness. In this randomized, controlled trial, comparisons are made between the efficacy of manual therapy, physiotherapy and general practitioner care in reducing neck pain. Manual therapy consisted of spinal mobilization focusing on specific muscle mobilization, joint mobilization and coordination and stabilization. Physiotherapy consisted mainly of exercise. General practitioner care consists of counseling, education and analgesics (pain pills).

Outcomes measured included perceived recovery, intensity of pain, functional disability and quality of life; direct and indirect costs were measured to determine the overall cost-effectiveness.

RESULTS: Manual therapy was the most effective of the three treatments, with 68% of the patients demonstrating recovery after seven weeks, compared to 51% in the physiotherapy group and 36% in the general practitioner group. These differences continued to remain significant at 6 months and a year. Manual therapy proved significantly more cost effective than the other two interventions with total costs at one year equaling one-third the costs of either physiotherapy or general practitioner care.


Supplements: the good, the bad, & the ugly


Several patients ask what supplements would be best for them to take, and I realize it can be overwhelming walking up and down the aisles…where do you start?

Here are some great tips: QUESTIONS!

How is the tablet held together? This will affect how your supplement is absorbed in your body. “Cellulose capsule” is the shell and is not harmful. Our products are hypoallergenic. They may be pressed with vegetables to enhance absorption. They contain no dairy, yeast, wheat, salt, egg, starch, gluten, corn, sugar, binders or coatings. Impure ingredients and diluted forms of the vitamin are typically used and are not required to be listed on the label. “Carbonate” and “oxide” forms are not absorbed well in our bodies. (Check your calcium and magnesium) Sugars and plasticizers like “propylene glycol” may hold it together.

What’s good for the machine while manufacturing is not good for you! More advanced companies will not depend on lubricants like stearic acid. Although it aids in the efficiency of the machines, our digestive systems have trouble breaking it down. Nutrient absorption is consequently delayed or inhibited. Some companies will use “calcium stearate” as a lubricant and then make it appear to be a calcium source, which it is not! Time-released supplements with these ingredients are actually harmful due to the nature of where and when it should be broken down.

Do you know where your product is made and under what guidelines? Can you tour their facility? Thorne Research manufactures over 120 high-purity supplements in their own 58,000 sq. ft. facility in Dover; Idaho. Metagenics adheres strictly to the GMP (good manufacturing practices) in both locations (Wash. and Calif.)Standard Process in Palmyra, WI has used their own raw, organically- grown food materials for 75 yrs. in their formulas. Pure Encapsulations uses pure ingredients and make products (over 20% of which are prescriptions in Europe) in their facility in Sudbury, MA. There are no mandatory rules set by the FDA in regards to supplements. Therefore, a company can produce a supplement without any significant science or testing, proving its quality. It’s unfortunately true…labels can be misleading and are sometimes meant to be that way. It may not be giving you exactly what you think it does. Although the higher quality products will not sell directly to you (they sell only to physicians), there is a reason for it…they are giving you what it says it is and these don’t, so you should be under the care of a doctor.

Does the company which makes your supplement do any research or offer educational programs? Metagenics has a staff of 35 clinicians and scientists who are involved in all aspects of product manufacturing and testing. They have several experts who offer seminars to health professionals & have maintained a research center in Washington since 1990.Standard Process has several dedicated representatives, offer several seminars, and do research studies. These products you buy at your grocery store, convenience store, or even your health food store in a mall are made by companies that do not offer educational programs, professional services, or even information and research proving the quality and potency of each product.