WYSONG HEALTH LETTER
Whoever originally conceived of baby formulas must have been drooling over the potential profits. All that needed to be done was to convince mothers that what nutritionists and food scientists could create in a can or bottle was high-tech and superior to the “barbarism” of breast feeding, (breasts are just for adornment) and you could own a perpetual market of billions of babies. Well the marketeers were quite successful. In the 1940’s, 50’s and 60’s, they convinced most American women that they should opt for the convenience and scientific certainty of manufactured formulas. This was not enough, however, for the food giants, so they moved the idea into the rest of the world - including the developing nations. The result: A nutritional disaster. Babies began to suffer from a wide range of nutritional and infectious diseases directly attributable to breast milk substitutes.
Today most women have come to understand that the breast is better, and the medical community has (hesitantly and slowly) swung back to recommending breast milk. The evidence for the superiority of breast milk is overwhelming and I allude to it frequently in the Health Letter.
But this has not stopped the enthusiasm of manufacturers for this profit cow. Promotion of milk substitutes for babies has become widespread, particularly in third world countries. In response the World Health Organization has laid down guidelines which good manufacturers are supposed to observe. This is called the WHO/UNICEF Code. It includes the following (not followed in the U.S.):
1) No advertising of breast milk substitutes.
2) No free samples to mothers.
3) No promoting of products to health care facilities.
4) No company nurses to advise mothers.
5) No gifts or personal samples to health workers.
6) No words or pictures idealizing artificial feeding, including pictures of infants on the labels of the products.
7) Information to health workers should be scientific and factual.
8) All information on artificial feeding, including the labels, should explain the benefits of breast feeding and the costs and hazards associated with artificial feeding.
This reminds me of the caveats now in place for smoking, with warnings now required on labels and restrictions on advertising.
The experience with artificial infant foods should serve as a warning to us all that when manufacturers claim they can create a food that is better than that which comes from nature, we should run the other way. The bad experience with infant formulas is one of the reasons that “all-in-one,” “100% complete” adult human food products have not taken root.
But not so in the pet food industry. The “100% complete and balanced” perfect pet food is not only promoted for puppies and kittens, but is suggested by almost the entire veterinary profession and the pet food industry, along with its supporting nutritionists, as the best way to feed animals at all life stages. The fact that such manufactured foods can be claimed as "100%" nutritionally perfect - not only with the full knowledge of regulatory officials, but with their direct consent and even promotion - remains as the greatest ongoing travesty of medical, nutritional and regulatory honesty and responsibility in modern commerce.
In spite of the fact that such so-called “100% complete and balanced” diets have caused rampant nutritional disease, the products are promoted in veterinary schools, veterinary clinics, and fill the air waves with their false and misleading claims. The damage to pets and indirectly to their owners is immeasurable.
Regulatory authorities not only consent, but practically mandate, such claims on labels and fill their regulatory time scrutinizing labels for picayune issues such as positioning of text, precise wording and other issues of form while totally neglecting the substance of the damage their approval and promotion of “100% complete” diets creates.
Things will continue as they are with baby formulas and pet foods because there are now huge vested economic interests at stake. Until consumers wake up to the fraud and perhaps hold regulatory officials, nutritionists, manufacturers and professionals liable for the health consequences of feeding so-called “balanced” manufactured foods, things will continue as they are.
DIVORCE AS A DISEASE
If you want to stay healthy, better think long and hard before subjecting yourself to the trauma of a divorce.
Here are some of the consequences of divorce:
• Nonsmoking divorced men have almost the same death rate from cancer as married men who smoke a pack or more a day.
• Terminal cancer strikes divorced individuals of both sexes at higher rates.
• Cardiovascular disease and strokes double for divorced men.
• Unmarried men are twice as likely to die at a younger age than those who are married. In some studies the risk was 10 times greater.
• Death from pneumonia is more than 7 times greater for unmarried men.
• Divorced individuals experience increased susceptibility to acute conditions such as infectious disease, parasites, digestive problems and trauma.
• Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are higher in divorced individuals.
• Divorced men visit psychiatrists at a level 9 times greater than married men, and are hospitalized for psychiatric problems at a rate 21 times greater than those married.
• Divorced women have a 5 times greater rate of psychiatric care than married women.
• Divorce is now the number 1 factor linked with suicide, creating a risk 4 times greater than for married individuals. • Automobile fatalities triple among the divorced.
• The life span of children of divorced couples may be shortened by as much as 10 years.
• Both alcohol and drug abuse increase in children from divorced parents.
• Girls are 60% more likely to divorce if their parents have, and boys are 32% more likely. Marriage is serious business and should be undertaken with full awareness of its potential implications for not only the health of the adults, but their resulting children. Unfortunately, most are pulled into marriage by surging hormones, rather than mental deliberation and objective assessment. (See Wysong Health Letter, Vol. 8, No. 2)
If difficulties arise in the marriage, couples can benefit from being instructed in how to communicate properly, solve problems, and honestly clarify expectations to one another. Before getting married, couples should receive some premarital counseling - and certainly before bearing children people should be educated that having children is not simply recreation and a “right,” but rather a serious responsibility one takes for the future of another life within the increasingly crammed context of the world as it exists today.
Physician, September 1997:15-17
VITAMIN C AND CATARACTS
Vitamin C is found in high levels in the lens of the eye. The vitamin protects against oxidative stress and resultant free radical damage, the consequence of which is an opacity of the lens called cataracts.
Although there has been controversy as to whether vitamin C could prevent or reverse cataracts, a recent study seems to confirm its benefit over the long term.
In the Nurses Health Study, 247 women had vitamin C intake compared to cataract development after 10 years. Those who consumed vitamin C supplements for 10 years or more had an 83% lower incidence of lens opacities compared to those who did not take vitamin C supplements.
Vitamin C is available at a food form moderate dosage supplementation level in Wysong Food C™ and Food A•C•E™, and in larger dose concentrations in Spectrox™ and Mega C™.
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 1997; 66:911-16
MARRIAGE RINGS FOR ARTHRITIS
A study has shown that individuals wearing gold rings help protect the hand wearing the ring from arthritic changes. Patients experience less articular erosion in the joints than in the opposing hand without the ring. It is speculated that gold can pass through the skin into the tissues of the hand and exert an anti-inflammatory effect.
Ann Rheum Dis, August, 1997:497-99
BREAST, NOT UDDER
Infants fed cow’s milk during the first eight days of life are twice as likely to develop insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus as those not fed cow’s milk. It is speculated, therefore, that feeding breast milk (the no-brainer correct food for infants) may help protect individuals from developing this disease.
Diabetes Care, August, 1997:1256-59
Current nutritional “wisdom” is to consume high levels of carbohydrates. This includes pastas, breads, cereals, granolas, potatoes, fruit juices and energy bars. Some pet foods are now even being designed with an emphasis on carbohydrates.
Athletes have been told that they should carbohydrate load in preparation for an athletic event. The reasoning is that if high levels of carbohydrates are eaten, glycogen (tissue carbohydrate) will be produced and stored and readily available to provide fuel.
But let's put this to our “Wysong archetypal logic test.” Would primitive man or wild animals have available to them processed carbohydrates to load up for their "athletic" events? Certainly not. Carbohydrates, in the quantity and form we have them today, are a result of factory farming and food processing.
Put to scientific test, this carbohydrate infatuation does not pass either. A study at the State University of New York showed that when athletes were given various diets consisting of 15, 30 or 45% fat, displacing carbohydrates, and then engaged in strenuous physical exercise, that those on the high fat diets performed the best. There were no adverse changes in blood profiles and there was no weight gain either.
In a study in South Africa of cyclists on a diet of just 7% carbohydrates compared to cyclists on a diet of 74% carbohydrates, the low carbohydrate athletes were able to pedal twice as long as the high carbohydrate opponents.
Historically, meat-eating people who relished such things as fatty fish and organ meats dominated vegetarian societies.
Body builders and power lifters also understand well the importance of fat and protein as opposed to carbohydrates. Those who have attempted vegetarian diets quickly lost muscle mass and strength and could only regain it once they returned their diet to a higher fat, higher protein animal-origin form.
We may wish it were different (I do), but we cannot deny our design.
Price Pottenger Health Journal, 20;3:13
COFFEE AND ATHEROSCLEROSIS
The debate continues as to whether coffee promotes atherosclerosis. In a recent meta-analysis (an evaluation of a variety of clinical studies) it was found that those people who drink five or more cups of coffee per day have about a 60% increased risk of heart disease. In another prospective study (studying individuals into the future) of about 38,000 Norwegian men and women, it was found that men who drank several cups of coffee daily had double the risk of heart disease and for women it was quintupled.
Other studies have separated out the risk of filtered coffee from unfiltered coffee, suggesting that diterpenes present in floating fines may be the root cause of increased risk. Other examinations of data have shown no clear correlation between coffee drinking and risk. It is interesting to me that in many of these examinations comparisons were made between relative numbers of cups of coffee. To me it seems evident that when experts disagree it is certainly time for us to use our own common sense.
Coffee is not a natural food. It is not something that would or could be eaten in its raw, whole form in the wild. In order to be consumed it must be processed, heated, ground, filtered, decaffeinated, sugared, creamed, etc., etc. Although it is derived from a natural substance, it is by and large synthetic. When people relentlessly consume any such product on a daily basis and even become addicted to it, it should be evident to the thinking mind that it is not a healthful idea.
Br Heart Journal, 1994;72:269-75
Br Med Journal, 1990;300:566-9
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 1995;61:149-54
MINERALS AND EXERCISE
Athletes who are involved in intense physical exercise are at risk of mineral deficiency. Minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc and potassium can be lost at high rates in the sweat and urine. In one study of a men’s basketball team it was found that during intense training they would lose 3.8% of bone mineral content. But in the off-season they would only gain back about 1.1%. This, repeated through several seasons, could put them in serious jeopardy. Not only are they at risk of bone fracture, but also musculoskeletal injuries.
This may also account for the increasing incidence of cardiomyopathy (a disease of heart muscle) in athletes.
Athletes, or even vigorous fitness enthusiasts, should give special consideration to restoring the diet to its archetypal whole, natural, raw, form. In addition vitamin/mineral supplementation should be given (such as Wysong RDA™, Optimal™ and Chelamin™) and extra sports-specific nutrients (such as in the Wysong NSF™ formulas designed for athletes) to help insure against deficiencies.
The relationship in humans of magnesium deficiency to cardio-myopathy makes me mindful of the increasing incidence of this condition in pet animals. Various commercial pet food diets have been so-called “scientifically manipulated” to alter balances of minerals. For example it has been commonplace for many years to try to make diets for cats that are very low in magnesium because it was reasoned that since some types of urinary stones contain magnesium that it was the high magnesium that was the cause. It is predictable that as time goes on we will find such artificial manipulations of the diet are the cause of disease, not its cure.
Journal of the American Medical Association, 1997;277:24
DHEA, MELATONIN WARNING
DHEA and melatonin are synthetic hormone substances now taken by millions of people over the counter as a means of enhancing sleep, treating disease and staving off a variety of signs of aging. It all sounds wonderful, but one of the few things I learned while in practice was that it's like playing with fire to use hormones in any form. They are potent metabolic regulators, and tinkering with them is like trying to fix a computer with a hammer and hack saw. We do not know the myriad interactions of the dozens of hormones produced by the body (the adrenal gland for example, in addition to producing DHEA, produces over 100 other hormones and related compounds).
I have warned for some time of the potential danger of taking melatonin and DHEA long-term. As time moves on, the side effects will become evident and publicized. By then it may be too late for you, so don’t become a part of this experiment.
Any time we take an artificial substance which the body is capable of synthesizing, one thing that happens is negative feedback inhibition. This means that the gland that is responsible for producing the hormone is suppressed in its efforts to produce the hormone. It senses high blood levels of the hormone because you are taking it orally, and thus it shuts down its synthesizing activity and gradually becomes weaker and weaker. Then when we decide to no longer take the compound, the gland is no longer capable of producing it at the levels necessary.
CHEWING FRUIT TO PREVENT CANCER
A National Cancer Institute (NCI) study has shown that eating raw fruits can significantly lower the risk of developing cancers of the throat and mouth. Although the vitamin C in the fruits is antineoplastic (cancer preventing), it is believed that the chewing of fruit in and of itself exerts some protective action, as do a variety of other compounds found in fresh fruits.
These compounds belong to a class known as polyphenols. There is ellagic acid in grapes, nuts and strawberries, chlorogenic acid in apples and potatoes, and cinnamic acid in plums, cherries, pears, grapes and apples. If these compounds are fed to laboratory animals before exposing them to carcinogens, there is a prevention of cell mutation and cancer development. (Needless animal torture to prove the obvious.)
Although the NCI study focused on throat and mouth cancer, the polyphenols found in fruits and also in many vegetables are believed to exert a body-wide anti-cancer effect.
Certainly we should be eating several helpings of fresh, raw fruits and vegetables daily. Permit your pet to eat some as well. You might be surprised to find that they enjoy things like apple slices, bananas, carrots, avocados, etc.
LOW FAT DOES NOT MEAN HIGH LIFE
Low fat diets, contrary to popular belief, actually increase depression, psychological problems, fatigue, violence and suicide. In children, low fat diets can even retard proper development of the brain and body and cause learning disabilities. Women who consume very low fat diets of less than 20% have the same rate of breast cancer as women who consume very large amounts of fat.
In actual fact, modern humans are suffering from fat malnutrition and undernutrition. We are consuming too much of the wrong kinds of processed fats and not enough of the health-giving fats such as the omega-3, -6 and omega-9 fatty acids found within natural foods. Primitive people throughout the world eat with great health benefit foods that are whole, natural and high in fat - in some cases actually seeking those foods which have the highest fat content. For further proof, see my book, Lipid Nutrition - Understanding Fats and Oils in Health and Disease (available from Resource below).
Lipid Nutrition is available from Wysong, 1880 N. Eastman Rd., Midland, MI 48642.
Lancet, March 2 1992;v339
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 54:438-63
New England Journal of Medicine, February 8, 1996
Abrams, Food and Evolution 1987
ESTROGEN AND ACNE
The development of acne correlates with the dramatic hormonal changes which occur during the onset of puberty. Estrogens (female hormones) and testosterone (male hormones) shift in balance to cause the development of secondary sex characteristics.
It is the excessive production of testosterone during this time that may be related to the development of acne in some individuals.
Two things may help. One is ginseng. It will help counteract the dramatic swings in hormones. Ginseng has an adaptogenic (moderating) effect on the various hormones, creating balance. Another approach is to increase the consumption of the androgen antagonistic, estrogen-rich foods. These would include eggs, meat, and dairy products, whole grains, wheat germ, potatoes, olives, eggplants, cherries, apples, tomatoes and herbs such as garlic, sage, parsley and ginseng. (Prostatitis in adult men may also be benefited by these same estrogen-rich foods which counteract the prostate stimulating testosterones.)
On the other hand, too high of estrogen levels in women can result in breast and pelvic organ cancer as well as PMS, cysts of the ovaries and fibroid tumors in the uterus. Foods that may help lower estrogen levels or be antiestrogenic include corn, white rice, onions, cabbage, string beans, squash, melons, figs, berries, pineapples, grapes, oranges, grapefruit, pears, thyme, dill, bayberry bark, shepherd’s purse, red raspberry and soybeans.
Additional therapies proven effective in acne include: