Tag Archives: Health

Do not leave your Doctor’s office until… (part 1)

Do not leave your Doctor’s office until… (part 1)


Please, never leave your doctor’s office until you have the secretary copy and give you your medical report or reports.Have you ever had to request your medical records from your doctor or hospital and got the “run around”? I am writing this article to inform you of your rights as an informed patient, to help you become organized, and because of my frustration. Our clinic, New Hope Unlimited, always ask prospective patients for their past medical records. We feel this is good medical practices. It not only gives the doctors an idea of what has happened to the patient in the past, but helps the patient in more ways than one. Many times we have found wrong information in the records that belonged to another patient with a total different diagnosis. Many times we have found there were symptoms diagnosed that was never discussed with the patient or the family. On the other hand, we have found great news that was never told to the patient that the patient needed to hear.

We are seeing an increasing issue where institutions are refusing to give records or charging an enormous fee for them. For, instance, I remember a patient asked for their records and was charged $35.00 for 8 pages of records. Its true that it is legal that they can charge you for the copy and the time for the employee to go find your records and copy them. But, in my opinion, thats highway robbery when you can get someone like Kinkos to make a copy for 10 cents a page.

We have experienced an incidence where someone still owed money for their surgery and they were refused their medical records until the bill was paid. Wrong! We got busy and let that office know that was against the law.

Some offices will say they sent the records and the records were never received. Sometimes the secretary may get busy and just forget to send them out. This of course upsets the patient, and the patient starts wondering who is telling the truth. Other offices do not want to give the records out unless the patient tells them where they are going and why. No doctor wants to loose patients. We tell our patients that you never have to give them that information unless you want to and “never burn the bridges”. Always be kind and be informed of your rights.

It seems we are having to go to battle more and more for our patients than ever before. Your medical records belong to you. In part 2, I will discuss the HIPPA laws and other laws you need to know about.

So much for the negative. What is the solution and what can we do about it? First thing, when you go into your doctor’s office, sign in and kindly tell the secretary “I will want a copy of my report when I leave today.” Tell them, “ I am keeping my own medical file up to date.” It is always easier to get the reports while you are there because your chart is out, the office staff does not feel threatened that you are leaving them or suing them, and most of the time they will not charge you. So much easier than having to go back and request the records.

We tell our patients to become active in your health care. One of the ways to do that is to simply keep track of your own records. There are many ways to organize your records once you get them. The easiest way is simply to put them in a file folder in a safe place. Another way is to buy a three ring notebook binder. This is the way I would suggest doing it.

With a three ring notebook binder, you can organize your records in several ways. One way is to divide your records into the years of treatment. For example, you may label the sections 2011, 2012 and so on. Your records would go in the year you were treated.

Another way to use the notebook, is to organize it by the doctors you see. You would divide the sections into Dr One Name, Dr Two Name, Dr Three Name, and so forth.

The way I feel is the best way is to divide the notebook into “Titles”. Your titles should include Pathology, Radiology (x-rays), Blood Work, Surgery, Office Visits, Correspondents, Insurance Forms, Appointment Dates, and you can even put a section in for Medical Bills.

By keeping your own set of records each time you go to the doctor, it keeps stress down,cost down, and makes you a more empowered patient.

The Fast Food Survival Guide

Dendritic Cells

Dendritic Cells
Many of our cancer patients at New Hope Unlimited are coming to us now because of their ability to educate themselves. The internet is a wonderful dictionary but it can also be very confusing. Trying to explain dendritic cells is confusing because these cells are so specialized and are very complex in how they work.

Ralph M. Steinman was awarded the Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research in 2007 and the Nobel Prize in Physiology and Medicine in 2011. Dendritic cells were first found and described by Paul Langerhans in the late nineteenth century.

Dendritic cells are immune cells which make up a large part of our immune system. These specialized cells come from hematopoietic bone marrow progenitor cells. Hematopoietic bone marrow means the area some blood cells are formed and progenitor cells are some of the first cells to form. Their main function is to help us process antigen material and present it on the surface of other cells of the immune system. An antigen is a substance in our system which is capable under the right conditions, of starting a specific immune response. In other words, dendritic cells act as messengers between the innate and adaptive immunity.

Once dendritic cells are activated, they migrate to the lymph nodes where they interact with T cells and B cells to start and shape the adaptive immune response. At a certain stage the dendritic cells grow branched projections.

Dendritic cells are constantly roaming our body looking for pathogens, bacteria and viruses. The dendritic cells are constantly in communication with other cells in our body. It is amazing but dendritic cells may also phagocytize small amounts of membranes from live cells by means of a process called nibbling. Phagocytize means kill and digest.

Dendritic cells are a very important part of getting rid of cancer. Dr. Harmon Eyre, the Vice President of Research at the AMA commented, “ Dendritic Cell Therapy or the so-called Dendritic Cell Vaccine is a newly emerging and potent form of immune therapy used to treat cancer.” It is wonderful to see that someone in his position is admitting that. However, why aren’t the physicians in the United States allowed to use it? The hospital where our clinic is located has been using it for years.

Dendritic Cell Therapy represents a new and promising immunotherapeutic approach for the treatment of advanced cancer as well as for prevention of cancer.

Cancer Treatment and the Professional Patient

Cancer Treatment and the Professional Patient
Over the years I have been very blessed to have met such wonderful patients and their families who have carried the torch of the dreadful cancer diagnosis.
I have had the experience of seeing hundreds of people go through many stages of trying to figure out what, why and how. I have seen that no one has all the answers however there should be a calling upon the land to stop accepting everything you hear as truth. I am not just speaking of the bad news of a cancer diagnosis but of things such as the way patients are being treated and the use of the internet. The internet is a wonderful tool but there needs to be caution for it can be a mole hole of scammers, prying on the ones who feel helpless and desperate.

In todays world, the minute one hears they or a loved one has cancer, the first thing they do is go to the internet to find a cure. Yes, I understand that’s what we all want but if you understand cancer a little better, you will realize that cancer can be a multi-faceted disease. I do not believe that just one thing can cure it. However, I do believe that using the power of the mind is possible to cure oneself but thats a hard thing to accomplish.

Clinics and businesses of all kinds will show an add on the internet with people stating that they had cancer and this one certain product cured them. BEWARE! I have learned that there are professional patients being paid to write these testimonies.

Approximately 9 years ago, I got a call from a famous doctor who was visiting our area. He stated that he wanted to take me to dinner and explain how he could help our cancer clinic grow. I was excited because certainly I wanted us to grow but I also was excited because this famous one wanted to take me to dinner. My ego got in the way.

Once we got to the restaurant and ordered our food, he explain to me that we needed professional patients and he could help supply those people. I was just a little naive at the time because I had never heard of these type people. I got excited once again but then I realized that I needed to start asking questions.

When I asked him, “What is a professional patient,” I was floored and lost all my respect for this man. He answered me by explaining that a professional patient is one who you put on the payroll or either pay a company to supply them. These “patients” are people who will write about how sick they have been and took this particular supplement or went to this particular clinic and was cured of their cancer. The really bad thing is that these people had never had cancer, never taken that supplement or never had been to that clinic! This is nothing more than wrong!!! He explained that its a marketing tactic that everyone does. Sorry, I have never allowed this and will never. Needless to say, I have not spoken to this man since.

Please, do not believe everything you read or hear. Search your heart. Ask your Naturopathic doctor or any doctor. As my father always told us kids, “If it seem too good to be true, it probably isn’t.”

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The Importance of Detoxification (time for a little spring cleaning)

The Importance of Detoxification (time for a little spring cleaning)

The human body is designed so that it has self-regulatory mechanisms which are self healing. A strong healthy body has the capability to eliminate the toxic substances generated. In todays world we are more exposed to many man-made chemicals and toxic substances. The water we drink and the air we breathe is becoming more polluted. The food we eat is processed, our meats are full of hormones and antibiotics. Our lifestyle has become more sedentary and our body’s cells lack the needed amount of oxygen.

Our body’s organs that help us to detox and excrete are overwhelmed and is overloaded with waste products and metabolites which helps render us to vulnerability to all kinds of bacteria, parasites and viruses.

Detoxification is a possible way towards restoration of the body’s regulatory mechanisms and possibly the reversal of diseased cells to the behavior of normal cells.

The liver has many accomplishments to fulfill. It represents the body’s major detoxification center. The liver inactivates and removes toxic substances that have been ingested such as harmful minerals, toxic medications, and even the food we eat that is disagreeable to us. It also extracts from the blood the residues and waste resulting from the daily cellular breakdown and transforms them into bi-products that can be excreted by the intestines or kidneys. The liver helps to eliminate the waste products and toxic metabolites resulting from intestinal fermentation and putrefaction. The liver is a known source of Kupffer’s cells which help filter and destroy foreign invaders such as viruses, bacteria, fungi and abnormal cells that can turn into cancer cells.

The kidneys are another essential detoxification organ. The kidneys have the important task of purifying the blood from harmful substances such as toxic medications, poisons, and other chemical substances. The kidneys filter these problematic substances by filtering them out of the blood and excreting them in the form of urine.

For the kidneys to do a good job, the blood pressure should not be too low or too high. Also the volume of the blood which passes through the kidneys in a given time should not be too low. For this reason, hydration is very important to thin the blood and lymph.

Our intestinal tract, from our mouth to our colon, not only helps us with our digestion, but also the elimination of toxins. When we become ill or out of balance, our tongue becomes coated showing that we can eliminate toxins through our mucous membranes. The old fashion doctors always said, “stick out your tongue and say ow.” When was the last time your doctor looked at your tongue?

The respiratory tract (our lungs and bronchi) help to evacuate toxins in the form of carbonic gas. It may also excrete phlegm. Healthy membranes (alveoli) in our lungs do not let solid waste to penetrate. However sometimes when we are down the alveoli may become porous and act as an emergency exit for toxins. These such toxins are transported by the blood stream toward the lungs and bronchi. They then squeeze through the alveoli and we can cough them up as phlegm. This phlegm can not only consists of microbes, but also of waste resulting from insufficient digestion and elimination.

Our lymph system plays a crucial part in detoxification and defense. Remember, our immune system is our first and last defense. Approximately two liters of lymph fluid circulate in our lymphatic vessels daily. These two liters are formed continually from our intestinal fluid that is the extra cellular membrane of the capillaries in order to keep the volume of lymph fluid constant and to allow the waste products to leave the cells and be carried away.

If our production of lymphocytes is insufficient, our body’s defense mechanism is down and the body’s defense against abnormal cells, which can turn into cancer and other immune disorders, will be impaired.

In writings to come I will report on different ways physicians are treating their patients to help them detox.

A word of warning: If you are suffering from an illness and are already in a weakened state, it is imperative that you GET PROFESSIONAL HELP before going on a stringent detoxification program. There are Naturopathic doctors all over the US than have been trained in such procedures.

The Big Pharma Whistleblower

The Big Pharma Whistleblower
Have you ever been relaxing, watching TV and a pharmaceutical drug advertisement comes on? Next time you see one, listen closely to the disclaimers. If you will notice, the disclaimers are getting longer and longer and take up almost half the time of the advertisement itself. There is one that is on these days with a golfer talking about how this drug has helped him with his pain. Then this long disclaimer comes on about the possible side affects that can be caused from taking this amazing drug. Wow! If you listen closely, it even mentions the possibility of it causing cancer. I’m not sure about you, but that feels to me as though you may be trading off arthritis like pains for something that could be even worse.

Recently I heard about a retired general manager of the pharmaceutical company named Eli Lilly. He worked for them for 30 years. He explained that he was urged by the public to tell the true story of the drug world and the criminal activities he was involved in over 30 years. He stated that he tried to sue Eli Lilly for wrongful dismissal based on his race. He lost his case.

It is interesting to watch this video. There are many more if you are interested. Just surf the web for Dr. John R. Virapen and you will get a list of information.

We all know (it’s no secret) how much money is involved in pharmaceutical drugs. A certain drug can be sold in the US for a certain amount of money but the exact same drug made by the same company can be sold in another country for a tenth of the price. I sometimes have trouble understanding this. Yes, we are the country of “milk and honey” but there are a lot of people who have no honey and very little milk. With our fallen economy, I would like to see our pharmaceutical drug companies care more about the people of the United States. But aside from the cost of the drugs, I am worried that the consumers are too trusting that all drugs help and forget that the many side affects can be worse than the problem itself. Cancer does not just start overnight!

We own our bodies and every cell in our body. Learn to take care and be informed enough to make sensible choices. I feel that sometimes the greatest doctors are gullible and tend to believe everything they hear. I hope they will start researching the drugs before they prescribe them.

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The Many Benefits of Onions (other than being a tear-jerker)

The Many Benefits of Onions (other than being a tear-jerker)


 As I was in the produce department of the grocery store today, I was picking out that perfect onion to go home with me and had a flash back about the benefits of raw onions. Sometimes I take the simplest things for granted and forget how important God’s garden can be for us.

When I was in medical school, we had a course in Botanical medicine. I would like to share what a simple little raw onion can possibly do in a big way.

The onion’s real name is Allium cepa and is a member of the Lilliaceae (or Lily) family. They are grown worldwide but my favorite is the Valdalia onion grown in Georgia, US.

It has been said that onions were used for medicinal purposes as far back as 4000 BC as a cure-all for many illnesses. Durning World War 11 the vapors of onions were used to help with pain.  Yes, I know, they didn’t have all the great medicine we have now. But consider this, with the fallen economy and onions are so cheap, why not use them as preventative medicine. Please go to the doctor when needed but lets concentrate on getting healthier and preventing illness before the illness sets in.

The constituents of a raw onion contains volatile oil, allicin, alliin, flavonoids, phenolic acid, and sterols. No wonder they’re so powerful!

In 1/2 cup of chopped fresh onion there is:

Calories   16                          Carbohydrates  4 g              Vitamin A   498 IU

Fat   0 g                                  Protein   1 g                           Vitamin C   10 mg

Saturated Fat   0 g                Dietary Fiber   1 g                 Iron 1 mg

Cholesterol   0 mg                Sodium 8 mg                                    Cartenoids   867 mic g

The World Heath Organization (WHO) states that onions can be used for the treatment of poor appetite and to prevent atherosclerosis. Also, the WHO recognizes the use of onion extracts as relieving coughs, colds, asthma and bronchitis.

Some of the things we learned in school was its great uses for:

  1. Respiratory problems such as colds. flu, cough, bronchitis, hoarseness, and mild fever.
  2. Skin problems such as suppurating wounds (an onion poultice drains the pus).
  3. Drinking the juice may relieve cystitis.
  4. Good for flatulence or gas.
  5. In general, onions may prevent oral infections and tooth decay.
  6. Onions are suppose to be great as a warm juice in the ear canal for a earache.
  7. For cardiovascular use, onions may help to increase the HDL cholesterol in the blood stream and help decrease the bad cholesterol (LDL). May also help increase the ability of the blood to dissolve blood clots.

Some of the ways in which to use the onions is as follows:

  1. Poultice: Bake the onion, crush and place on a gauze. This can be used on the chest for a cold or cough.
  2. Syrup: Create juice with sugar or press and add honey. This makes a good expectorant for coughs.
  3. Cold extract: Soak a onion in 1 cup water for 24 hours and strain.
  4. Decoction: Boil a medium, chopped onion in 1 1/2 cups of water until 1 cup liquid remains.
  5. Bake a large onion at 400 degree’s for 40 minute. Remove and mix the juice with an equal amount of honey.

There are many advantages in eating raw onions other than just for a food flavor enhancer. Surf the web when you have time and you will be amazed at what these small bulbs can do.

Remember however, never put off going to your doctor. We are talking here about getting healthier while you are still healthy.

Have fun, eat your onions and don’t forget your breath mints!  :-)

The Threat of Childhood Obesity

The Threat of Childhood Obesity


Obesity is a major problem in our society, and I especially worry about our children. Not only does it affect their health, but obesity affects a child’s psychological and social behaviors too. A child who overweight may be taunted and bullied, as being overweight is often stigmatized.  Many overweight children develop low self-esteem and may become depressed from being teased about their weight. As parents or grandparents we must take the steps to introduce healthy choices as often and as early as possible, and we must make these food choices available and accessible to our children. If we present food in a positive context, and model good food choices and behaviors ourselves, hopefully our children will do the same. I’m excited to offer a section now which will feature a few of my favorite recipes. Many of these are kid approved.

Granted, it may take a little ingenuity on our part, but the holidays often present a good opportunity to not only indulge our children or grandchildren but to present healthy treats in a fun way! My granddaughter, Kenzie, was recently sharing her excitement over the Easter basket she received Sunday. A few months ago she lost her top right incisor, which she swore was her sweet tooth. She was tickled it didn’t affect her ability to enjoy the huge chocolate bunny which sat right front in center of her basket! Yes, I admit I may know a little something about how he ended up there but I know nothing about what happened to his left ear. 😉 He may have gotten first mention, but Kenzie did also point out he was surrounded by “rabbit food”. After she indulged her sweet tooth, she munched away on carrots, raisins, pears, celery sticks, and cherry tomatoes too. Her basket was a fun way to incorporate a little of both worlds.



How To Calculate Your Own BMI

How To Calculate Your Own BMI


Have you ever felt like you were overweight but didn’t really know what your Body Mass Index percentage was? We all can get on a scale and see numbers in pounds but what does that really mean in body mass?

The Body Mass Index (BMI) is a measurement tool that compares your height to your weight. Using this tool can give you an indication of whether or not you are overweight, underweight or at a healthy weight.

One way to calculate your BMI is to weigh yourself and measure yourself in inches. Divide your weight in pounds by your height in inches squared. Then multiply the figure you get by 703.

A BMI of less than 18 means you are underweight.

A BMI between 25 and 29.9 means you are overweight.

A BMI over 30 means you are considered obese.

Good news! There is a much easier way to measure your BMI. Thanks to the internet, you can go to http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/, and punch in your height and weight numbers and you have it instantly. You put your height in feet and inches so there is no measuring unless you just feel so inclined. Its all for free thanks to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

Keeping up with our weight is a very important part of preventive medicine. If you lose five percent of your body weight, it is believed that you can improve your body’s ability to use the hormone called insulin that moves glucose into cells to be used, lowering your risk of type 2 diabetes.

If you lose eleven percent of your weight, it is believed that one can greatly lower their blood pressure, reduce their risk of heart disease and stroke.

Check out your BMI and let’s face the facts. Dropping a few pounds may even give us a little more energy!


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