I was little slow finding this article, it was published in 2013, but better late than never. About 14 percent of men can expect to receive a diagnosis of prostate cancer in their lifetime and about 3 percent of men diagnosed with prostate cancer will die of this disease.
Androgens are often called the "male hormones" even though both men and women produce androgens. In fact androgens are present in higher amounts in women than are estrogens and they perform about 200 actions in women. However, androgens are present in much higher levels in men and play an important role in male traits and reproductive activity. The two most well know androgens are testosterone and androstenedione. Other androgens include dihydrotestosterone (DHT), dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) and DHEA sulfate (DHEA-S).
Tumors in the prostate use androgens, especially testosterone, for growth. Thus if prostate tumors are deprived of androgens then they should stop growing and may even die. Or so the theory goes. Well, the theory got tested.
A research team from the University of Miami, link above, reported that regular doses of allspice could protect men from prostate cancer. A natural compound in allspice, ericifolin, was found to delay the growth of prostate cancer tumors. Ericifolin binds itself to the androgen receptors in prostate tumors, blocking the uptake of androgens like testosterone. The researchers conclude that the seasoning may be an effective treatment for preventing or even curing one of the most common and deadly cancers found in men. The researchers recommend that both prostate cancer patients and healthy individuals consume allspice at a slow but consistent rate. This will raise the levels of ericifolin and the researchers suggest that patients would experience slower growth and spread of prostate cancer, while healthy men could avoid the cancer entirely.
Remember that women also have androgens. Well, the results of the animal study suggested that women could also benefit from allspice. The same binding action may possibly slow down the rate of breast cancer growth.
Here is another related study. This double-blind study involved 199 men with an average of 74 years and who had localized prostate cancer. Sixty percent of the subjects were under managed primary active surveillance (AS) and the other 40 percent were under a watchful waiting (WW) protocol. The subjects were randomized (2:1) and the treatment group received an oral capsule containing a blend of pomegranate, green tea, broccoli and turmeric while the control group received an identical placebo for 6 months. Nature won.
At the end of the six-month experimental period the median rise in PSA in the food supplement group was 14.7 percent, compared to the 78.5 percent increase in PSA scores for the placebo group. There were no differences in cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar, C-reactive protein or adverse events, and I woudn't expect any because the treatment group received food in their capsules. The authors concluded that, "This study found a significant short-term, favourable effect on the percentage rise in PSA in men managed with AS and WW following ingestion of this well-tolerated, specific blend of concentrated foods."
Eat for health and wellness,
Dr. Dave, N. D.
This is important, it won't help you live forever if that is what you are looking for, but I will improve your health, and probably substantially. The Lancet published an article in January, 2019, with an impressively long title: Carbohydrate quality and human health: a series of systematic reviews and meta-analyses, and lots of data to back it up.
The authors did a series of systematic reviews and meta-analyses articles related to indicators of carbohydrate quality and non-communicable disease incidence, mortality, and risk factors, and which had been published in sites such as PubMed, Ovid MEDLINE, Embase, and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials. The looked at just under 135 million person-years of data from 185 studies and 58 clinical trials with a total of 4,635 adult participants. Now that's a lot of data, and their findings are important.
They found, when comparing the data from the highest dietary fiber consumers with those of the lowest consumers, a 15–30% decrease in all-cause and cardiovascular related mortality (that's death my friends), and in the incidence of coronary heart disease, stroke incidence and mortality, type 2 diabetes, and colorectal cancer. Clinical trials also showed a significantly lower body weight, systolic blood pressure, and total cholesterol between the two groups.
The risk differences were greatest dietary fiber was between 25 g and 29 g per day. They also noted that higher daily fiber intake that higher intakes of dietary fiber could confer even greater benefit to protect against cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, and colorectal and breast cancer. So, where can you get that much fiber? Click HERE for a free chart of high fiber foods. Once you have downloaded the chart then plan your fiber foods for the day and see how easy it is to get to 25 grams per day.
To your health,
Dr. Dave,, ND
Have you ever thought about going on a Whole Food Plant-Based (WFPB) but wondered how you would get enough protein? Where is a short list of high-protein vegie-based foods:
Combine these ingredients in a food processor and puree until smooth then add:
Add the garbanzo beans to the food processor and puree for 3 minutes, pause and scrape the sides down and puree again for another 2 to 3 minutes. Add more ice water or olive oil, one table spoon at-a-time, if the mix seems to be too thick.
Taste and then add sea salt, cumin and/or lemon juice to taste.
Garnish with pine nuts, chopped parsley or anything else that suits your fancy.
Dr. Dave, ND
Researchers at Ball State University may have discovered the fountain of youth, or at least one of its tributaries. Here is a link to the research, and to a summary. They looked at men and women in the early 70's, both exercisers and healthy non-exercisers. Specifically they looked for differences in heart and lung capacities and muscle fitness. They discovered the those who had exercised for decades had fitness levels more like those of individuals in their early 40s. You don't need a PhD or ND to figure this one you. Exercise wins, especially long-term exercise.
So if you are a 30 or 40 something couch potato think about how you would like to live when you are in your 70s. Give yourself the gift of life and develop a habit now of exercising every day. Mix up cardiovascular exercise with weight training (look at my blog index on the resource page for ideas). If you are like me and are closer to 70 than to 60 its still not too late to start. Getting into shape at any age and then staying in shape is better that sitting in a rocking chair.
This is a young guy dressed up like an old man . . . but make this your goal when you are 84:
Get up, get out, and move!
Dr. Dave, ND
I was reviewing one of my favorite medical journals early this morning, the Journal of Herbal Medicine, and came across this study that I thought was pretty interesting. The authors conducted a single-blind (I really wish that it would have been a double-blind study), randomized, placebo-controlled study was conducted with 60 women between the ages of 18 and 45. The participants were randomly allocated to receive either a total of 4 g of N. jatamansi (better know as Spikenard) or placebo for the 15 days prior to menstruation, and then for two consecutive menstrual cycles. Baseline scores on the premenstrual tension syndrome observer-rating scale (PMTS-O), the premenstrual tension syndrome self-rating scale (PMTS-SR) and the visual analogue scale (VAS) scores were recorded. The data using the same instruments were collected at the end of the first and second cycles of treatment.
The study demonstrated a statistically significant reduction in average PMTS-O and PMTS-SR scores in the treatment group while no significant difference in average PMTS-O and PMTS-SR scores was observed in the placebo group. A comparison between baseline and post treatment scores in the treatment group showed a significant reduction in all VAS domains other than swelling of extremities. The placebo group, on the other hand, did not demonstrate a significant reduction observed in any of the 10 VAS domains.
N. jasamansi is available in capsule form from most reputable herb shops and also as an essential oil. N. jasamansi, used in the above study, is not the same as American Spikenard (Aralia racemosa) so if you decide to try it make sure you purchase the N. jasamansi.
Here are some of my other favorite herbs that help reduce PMS symptoms:
WARNING: Do not confuse Blue Cohosh with Black Cohosh. Black Cohosh is an effective herbal supplement to reduce the symptoms of PMS and menopause. Blue Cohosh on the other hand is pretty dangerous. Blue Cohosh has been used traditionally to treat uterine inflammation, arthritis, heart failure, and to induce labor during childbirth. Blue cohosh was included in the United States Pharmacopeia until 1890 and listed there as a drug.
To your health,
Dr. Dave, N.D.
A recent study (December 2018) in the Journal of Medicinal Food demonstrated that supplementation with alpha-lipoic acid (ALA), carnosine, and thiamine lowers blood sugar levels in obese individuals with diabetes. Moreover, it also reduces oxidative stress and inhibits platelet aggregation and this provides additional cardiovascular protection.
The research team conducted a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled trial to test the effectiveness of oral supplementation with ALA, carnosine, and thiamine. In the study, 82 obese individuals with Type 2 diabetes were assigned to one of two groups: a treatment group and a control group. The treatment group received 7 milligrams per kilogram body weight (mg/kg) of ALA (that's a bit over 600 mg for a 200 pound individual), 6 mg/kg body weight of carnosine, and 1 mg/kg body weight of thiamine every day for eight weeks, while the control group received a placebo. The researchers measured the participants’ oxidative stress levels and platelet aggregation at the beginning and at the end of the study. They also measured the anti-platelet activity of each of the supplement’s components ex vivo on human and washed rabbit platelets.
The results indicated that supplementation with ALA, carnosine, and thiamine reduced glucose and oxidative stress levels. It also reduced insulin sensitivity while increasing its production. The treatment group also exhibited decreased platelet aggregation. However, the research team determined that ALA was the only inhibitor of platelet aggregation. Overall, these findings suggest that daily supplementation with ALA, carnosine, and thiamine exhibit blood sugar-lowering, antioxidant, and cardioprotective effects in obese patients with Type 2 diabetes.
What else can you do if you have been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes? Here are a few life-style changes to think about:
Here is an interesting article that I ran across this morning. One of the distinguishing characteristics of cancer cells is their increase in cellular glucose uptake and dependence. In fact, glucose addiction distinguishes cancer cells from other cells. This is thought, in part at least, to support aerobic glycolysis. Rapidly dividing cancer cells use aerobic glycolysis for the production of metabolic intermediates, amino acids, nucleic acids, and energy. Due to their need for sugar they also exhibit an increased sensitivity to glucose deprivation.
The researchers in this study found that low levels of sugar, levels that are insufficient to provide the energy that the tested cancer cells require. can trigger a reaction that causes them to die. They also found that when cancer cells are deprived of sugar a reaction across the cancer cell membrane occurs that leads to an increased intake of calcium ions into the cells, which causes them to die ultimately. The team posit that depriving cancer cells of sugar and increasing the body’s calcium levels may destroy cancer cells while leaving the healthy ones unharmed.
Quick take-away: cutting back on sugar may help decrease your likelihood of getting certain cancers
I almost passed over this article, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, because the title is such a mouthful, but then I "translated" it and my version of the title is "Hey Dude, Eating Chocolate Every Day Is Good For You". That's great news!
The 45 male volunteers who participated in the study were divided into three different groups. The members of each group took a capsule with their breakfast every day for one month. Two of the three capsules contained different amounts of the two most studied antioxidants found in chocolate: (-)-epicatechin and procyanidins. Both compounds are flavonols or flavan-3-ols, a class of flavonoids found in many fruits and vegetables, including cocoa. Thus one group received a placebo, another group got the (-)-epicatechin capsules and the third group received procyanidins capsules. Nicely designed study.
The researchers team from the University of Dusseldorf in Germany found that (-)-epicatechin improved endothelial function in the volunteers. It also lowered their blood pressure and reduced arterial stiffness. These results aligned with those of previous studies, particularly a 14-year-long longitudinal study conducted in the Netherlands which reported that men who consumed large amounts of (-)-epicatechin had a 38 percent lower risk of dying from coronary heart disease than men who consumed less (-)-epicatechin. The men in the Netherlands were not popping (-)-epicatechin capsules, they were scarfing down lots of great tasting chocolate.
The experimental subjects who took large amounts of procyanidins did not experience a decrease in blood pressure or arterial stiffness. However, they did exhibit a reduction in blood cholesterol levels. This demonstrated that procyanidins still support heart health, albeit in an indirect way.
And here is more good news. Research shows that (-)-epicatechin also decreases blood glucose levels in diabetic patients. (-)-Epicatechin increases insulin sensitivity and decreases insulin resistance, suggesting that eating (-)-epicatechin-rich foods like chocolate can help prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes. It also as anticancer effects. Several studies reported that it can stop angiogenesis or the formation of new blood vessels, which is one of the ways cancer cells grow and spread to other parts of the body. High concentrations of (-)-epicatechin also prevent cancer cell proliferation in vitro.
To me it appears that eating chocolate, dark chocolate in particular because it contains more cocoa, is the best way to enjoy both the benefits of improved endothelial function and a reduction in blood cholesterol levels. Just don't over do it.
To your health . . .
Dr. Dave, N.D.
 The endothelium is the layer of cells that line the interior surface of blood vessels and lymphatic vessels. They form an interface between circulating blood or lymph in the lumen and the rest of the vessel wall.
For dinner last night I sautéed a heaping plate of vegies: broccoli, thinly sliced cauliflower (sliced thin it browns very nicely), zucchini, red onions, garlic, and a hand full of mushrooms in olive oil with a bit of rosemarry and sea salt. This morning I got to wondering about the health benefits of the yummy, fruiting body of a fungus, yes, the mushrooms. Consequently I did a little internet digging and found this review paper.
The research team reviewed and summarized the latest research about the health benefits and underlying functional mechanisms of mushroom nutraceuticals. Here is a quick summary of their findings:
To your health,
Dr. Dave, ND
 Functional foods are foods that have a potentially positive effect on health beyond basic nutrition.
 If you live out West where the forests are coniferous then get out in the woods from September through February and look under Douglas Fir trees for Chanterelle mushrooms. Living on the East coast now I really miss my fall treks into the woods to collect this yummy delicacy.
A number of different life-style factors and choices have been linked to cancer. Ten of the often-overlooked causes of cancer appear to be the following:
Before running a correlation matrix and multiple regression I thought that cigarette consumption would be the most highly correlated variable with cancer incidence and that it would have the lowest p value in the regression (p value shows the probability of non-significant effect on the dependent variable). My expectation was wrong. Of the three independent variables (meat consumption, stress level, and cigarette use) stress turned out to be the most significant variable in the multiple regression and was most highly correlated with cancer rates. And cancer researchers are not likely to come up with a pill or vaccine that will reduce your stress level. So what are you doing to reduce your stress level? Here is what I do:
Stay happy and healthy,
Dr. Dave, ND
Do you have a favorite seed? I sure do, its the pistachio. They became my favorite "nut" in 1999 when Heidi, Geoffrey and I lived in Kyrgyzstan. We use to sit our the deck of the second-floor apartment that we rented from a former Soviet party official (nice flat, really nice flat) and snack on pistachios and red wine. The U.S. Embassy had told us that under no circumstance were we to drink the water. Sort of reminded me of my father in France right after the end of WWII. He too took to drinking wine because of the highly contaminated water. Anyway, the Embassy didn't tell us not to eat pistachios so we bought them from a street vendor and enjoyed them every evening while we watched people in the park across the street.
Pistachios are not nuts, although they look like they are. The are really the seed pods from the fruit of the of a desert plant called Pistacia vera. These nutrient-rich seeds are full of antioxidants, fiber, and protein. They also contain healthy fats, like oleic and linoleic acid that reduce inflammation and lower your risk of heart disease. Here are some reasons why I love pistachios, besides that they taste great. They contain:
To your health,
Dr. Dave, ND
 Many cultures still have a vibrant evening community culture, something, unfortunately, that we have lost. In Kyrgystan families with young children would slowly walk around the wooded park visiting with friends. Old men would sit at small cement tables with cement stools and play chess while they smoked and drank wine (in public), and they regularly beat me at chess when I would venture into their domain with my basic Russian skills. Women had their corner of the park where they sat together and drank strong tea, and the teenagers sat n low walls and watched each other and flirted. My guess is that every night there were over a thousand people in the park (it was a BIG park, even had an old, semi-functioning Ferris wheel that sometimes worked and sometimes got stuck for an hour with kids on it.
Micronutrient deficiency has been linked to a higher risk of overweight/obesity and other dangerous and debilitating diseases. A 2010 study found that individuals following a popular diet plan as suggested (Atkins for Life diet, The South Beach Diet, or the DASH diet) with food alone, had a high likelihood of becoming micronutrient deficient. Here are five signs that you might be micronutrient defficient;
There are a couple of things that you can do to increase your intake of micronutrients. The quick and easy way is to take a good multivitamin and a high quality mineral supplement. See the picture above? Fruits and vegetables are full of micronutrients so make sure to eat a good supply of them every day.
To your health,
Dr Dave, ND
No, not that kind of boxing.
Most people would like their lives to be lived on a straight line. Point A might be where you are right now and point B is your goal destination. We all know that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Unfortunately sometimes life put obstacles in our way and those obstacles make it hard or impossible to follow a straight line from where we are to where we want to be. That's where boxing comes in. Assume, in the picture below, that I am facing the lake and I want to get to my campsite but life decided to park a lake in my path. The lake is too deep to wade across, and too big to swim across. I'm going to have to walk around it but I still want to get to my campsite.
I could just walk around the lake, sort of wander around a bit, and hope that I can find my destination when I get to the other side. However, unless my destination is marked with flags and flares I'll probably miss it because I'll get disoriented while wandering around the lake. Not only that, but unless I am able to get back exactly to point B, even if I use the same compass heading I'll head off on a track that is parallel to my original track but it will take me past, not to my destination. I might be walking parallel to my original track but hundreds of meters to the left or right of it. That's where boxing comes into play.
When you get close to the obstacle get your compass out, add or subtract 90 degree to your current heading (see, it helps to know where you are going, that's your current heading) and then turn in that direction and start walking while counting your paces. When you think that you are past the obstacle stop, record the number of paces you took, set your compass back to the original heading and start walking again while counting your paces. If you run into the obstacle again then repeat the process.
When you are sure that you have passed the obstacle the reverse the boxing path and when facing your original heading turn your compass 90 degree the other direction, boxing if necessary, and take the same number of paces back towards your original track as you took away from it. That's why it is important to count your total paces away from your original track.
If the total distance traveled on your original track is important then you can also count your number of paces parallel to but away from your planned track. The sum of those paces will measure the total distance across the obstacle that you walked around.
If you do this carefully you will find yourself on the other side of the obstacle, facing your destination, and on the same track that you were on before you ran into the obstacle. Now you can continue on your merry way.
Boxing is a very useful skill for land navigation. It is even more useful for life. It presupposes that (1) you have a plan and you know where you are going (your compass heading and track), and (2) that you can measure and control your deviations away from and back towards the track that leads to your goal.
Enjoy navigating through life,
Dr. Dave, ND
 Above I wrote about a parallel track that is away from your planned track and how that can cause you to miss your goal. Getting off track has the same effect, For example, an error of just 5° over one kilometer (0.62 mile) will result in you missing your goal by more than 87 meters (over 95 yards or almost a football field length away). If you are a football field away from your goal in the dark will you be able to find it? What if you aim is just a bit off when you are trying to reach a life goal, will you hit it. That reminds me of the Christian word "sin" which has very negative connotations but really just means "missing the mark" as in archery.
You have seen them . . . the chemtrails. I see them being sprayed almost every morning in the Eastern sky when I go for my morning walk. Most evenings I see them being sprayed on the Western horizon. Every time I see the trails being sprayed I ask myself what? and why? The government won't tell.
Independent tests have been conducted over the past five years at various locations around the country and they indicate that barium, cadmium, nickel, mold spores, yellow fungal mycotoxins, radioactive thorium, and mostly aluminum are now found in our atmosphere. I would not expect to find metals, and especially heavy metals, in the atmosphere. See UN testimony here.
If you worry about what you may be inhaling then here are a few herbs that detoxify the body.
Selenium -- This trace mineral is vital to the optimal functioning of the body, and has excellent antioxidant properties which protect against the damaging effects of exposure to pesticides and heavy metals. Selenium can specifically bind to mercury and pull it from your tissues so it can be excreted.
Chlorella -- This is a single-cell microalga that binds to heavy metals in the digestive tract, purifying the body from toxins absorbed through breathing contaminated air — including air contaminated by chemtrails — and from drinking impure water.
Spirulina -- Is a microalgae that detoxifies the digestive system in a similar way to chlorella, and it alkalizes the body, protecting against acidic environmental toxins that cause disease.
Milk thistle -- This plant contains the compound silybin that supports the functioning of the liver, the organ responsible for detoxification. Supporting healthy liver function is absolutely essential when you’re exposed to large amounts of harmful substances on a daily basis. If the liver gets overwhelmed and sluggish then a toxins are more likely circulate through the body and damage it.
Zeolite -- Zeolite is a natural chelator mineral. When ingested toxins and heavy metals bind to the mineral and are then eliminated from the body. I use liquid Zeolite. If you purchase the powdered form then make sure it is ultra fine (less-than 20 µm).
Dr. Dave, ND
I discovered the book, Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas, a 2001 novel by James Patterson, this morning while on my morning walk. The audio book I am listening to during my walk quoted the following passage from Patterson's book. "Imagine life is a game in which you are juggling five balls. The balls are called work, family, friends, health and integrity. And you are keeping all of them in the air. But one day you finally come to understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. The other four balls . . . are made of glass. If you drop one of these it will be irrecoverably scuffed, nicked, perhaps even shattered."
It doesn't really matter how you name your five balls. I named mine mental, social, spiritual, career and money, and physical. You can give your five balls any set of names that you wish. Just remember that we are trying to keep all of the balls in balance, all moving from one hand to the other, up into the air, and then back down to the first hand to repeat the cycle again and again.
All of the balls are important, but some are probably more important than the others. Over twenty years ago, after being a bit out of balance, I decided that family, the most important part of my relationship ball, was the One Thing and that no matter what, that was the ball that I would never drop. I could catch one of the other balls if I dropped it and it bounced. I could even pick up the pieces if the dropped ball shattered, but family, no, it had to stay in the air never to be dropped.
We all have a limited amount of time every day and it seems like most days there is an almost unlimited list of things we need to do. That means that we have to make decisions about where to allocate our time and energy. Some activities will receive a smaller time/energy allocation one day than they really need. In most cases that can be made up in the future. There are, however, some activities that can't be made up. That's why my wife and I never miss our son's activities, be they school or university concerts, sporting events, or time when one of them needs to go for a long walk with one of us to talk something over. Those are the kinds of activities that can't be made up.
I have learned that some activities can sustain a longer time between a time/energy deficit and that deficit being repaid. It is sort of like drawing down a battery. Some batteries, deep-cycle batteries, can be used for a long time and their energy level can be depleted to a fairly low level before they need to be recharged. The same is true of some of your five balls. Other batteries, like a AAA rechargeable battery, have shorter draw-down and recharge cycles, so do others of your five balls.
For example, inside my career and money ball I have a goal to publish at least one paper a year in an academic journal. I have already met that goal this year and just submitted my second paper to a journal for review. However, not all years are like this year. I have had some years when the combination of my teaching, administrative duties, and committee assignments have made it impossible for me to research and write during the normal academic year. Research, for me, is like a deep-cycle battery. Those years I recharged the battery, did my research and writing, during the summer and usually during the month when my boys were still in school but my academic year had ended.
Today I challenge you to do two things, and I really hope that you do it. First, give names to your five balls and write them down on the back of a business card you can keep in your wallet or in your journal. Then decide which ONE of those balls is your One Thing that you will never drop. I hope that you can find ways to keep your five balls in the air while never dropping the One Thing ball that is most important to you.
To your wellness,
Dr. Dave, ND
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.