May/June 2010, Volume 3, Issue 3
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Learning from the Past, Creating a Vision for the Future: Interview with
Marc Micozzi, MD, PhD
Health Insights Today editorial board member, Marc S. Micozzi, has long been a driving force in developing complementary and alternative medicine. A former cancer nutrition researcher, medical anthropologist, and director of the National Museum of Heath and Medicine, Micozzi authored the major textbook in the field, Fundamentals of Complementary and Alternative Medicine, now in its 4th edition. In this interview with Dr. Daniel Redwood, Dr. Micozzi speaks of the need to preserve healing traditions and apply them appropriately in contemporary settings in ways that diminish neither their integrity nor their power.
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Chiropractic Research Roundup
A review of all clinical studies on manual therapies by Bronfort and colleagues provides the best current summary of the state of research related to chiropractic. Also, a dose-response and efficacy study on spinal manipulation for cervicogenic headaches, by Haas and colleagues, shows a clear benefit, with eight visits typically providing the desired response.
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CAM in Review
Since their arrival from Asia, yoga and tai chi have spread widely through America and other Western nations. New studies deepen the body of research support for these mind-body approaches. A review of previous studies shows a trend toward improvement in menopausal symptoms with yoga and mind-body therapies, while two new studies on tai chi show benefits for people with knee arthritis.
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Health Reform & Chiropractic: A MAJOR STEP FORWARD
Chiropractors and their patients, with critical help from Washington heavyweights such as Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Chris Dodd (D-CT), achieved resounding success in the new health reform law—it is now illegal under federal law for insurance plans to discriminate against chiropractic. Section 2706 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 states: “… health insurance coverage shall not discriminate with respect to participation under the plan or coverage against any health care provider who is acting within the scope of that provider’s license or certification under applicable State law.”
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Exercise & Fitness REPORT
Investigators report that adding exercise to the DASH diet yields benefits beyond blood pressure, including insulin sensitivity and lipid levels. In other research, exercise helps improve symptoms of depression, and Pilates exercises improve muscle endurance and flexibility.
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The Yoga of Movement
Our bodies move in a multitude of patterns, yet once past childhood few of us explore our full range of motion. We walk in straight lines, run in straight lines, and get on a treadmill, elliptical trainer or rowing machine for a cardiovascular workout. It is important to have some activity that keeps us moving in circular, cyclical patterns, experiencing our full range of motion.
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Health Reform & Prevention
While most reporting on the recent national health reform debate emphasized its expansion of coverage, efforts at cost containment, requirement to purchase insurance (with subsidies for those needing help), and new federal regulation of the insurance industry, some of the most important long-term impacts of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 may spring from less noticed provisions, particularly those focused on prevention, health promotion and integrative care.
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Whole Grains & Beans
as Core Components
of a Healthy Diet:
Consensus, Controversy
& Current Research
Diets that include whole grains and beans have repeatedly been shown to have protective effects against the major chronic degenerative diseases of our time—heart disease, cancer, and diabetes foremost among these. The scientific literature supporting inclusion of whole grains and beans as part of a healthy diet is quite robust and forms the basis of a broad scientific consensus. Yet some urge complete avoidance of all grains, inaccurately claiming that even whole grains are inflammatory.
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Nutrition Update
In major new nutrition studies, ovarian cancer survival rates increase with intake of yellow and cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage), but decrease among those eating more meat and dairy; diets rich in vegetables, fruits and soy reduce breast cancer risk; and low vitamin D intake is associated with higher risk for cardiovascular disease, mortality, depression, and cognitive deficits.
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