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October 2008: The Healthy Back and Neck eNewsletter

The Healthy Back and Neck eNewsletter

October 2008 Issue #16

-In this Issue-
  1. Article - Fish Oil May Be Better Than Drugs For Preventing Heart Failure

  2. Health Tip of the month
  3. Testimonial of the month - Cervical traction neck Pillow- for patients with military neck
  4. Featured product -Slim Rest Lower Back Support for Low Back Pain Relief while sitting

  1. Fish Oil May Be Better Than Drugs For Preventing Heart Failure

    In just a moment, you�ll read about a new study demonstrating how fish oil may be better than a common drug in preventing heart failure.

    But first, have you ever wondered why your eyelids sag as you get older� and� if you can do anything about it to look younger?

    You probably have� considering� according to a recent report by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, nearly 241,000 Americans underwent eyelid surgery in 2007, making it one of the top four surgical cosmetic procedures performed. But were all these procedures performed under�

    False Theory?

    �A common treatment performed in the past and present is surgical excision of fat to treat a �herniation of fat� - meaning that the amount of fat in the eye socket does not change but the cover that holds the fat in place, the orbital septum, is weakened or broken and fat slips out,� said lead author Dr. Sean Darcy, a research associate in the division of plastic and reconstructive surgery at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and a plastic surgery resident at the University of California, Irvine. �This orbital septum weakening or herniation of fat theory is what most plastic surgeons have been taught.�

    "However, our study showed there is actually an increase in fat with age, and it is more likely that the fat increase causes the baggy eyelids rather than a weakened ligament," Darcy said. �There have been no studies to show that the orbital septum weakens.�

    The study looked at MRIs of 40 subjects (17 males and 23 females) between the ages of 12 and 80. The findings showed that the lower eyelid tissue increased with age and that the largest contributor to this size increase was fat increase.

    But this may come as a surprise to you: Currently, many plastic surgeons performing procedures to treat baggy eyelids do not remove any fat at all. They reposition the fat or conduct more invasive tightening of the muscle that surrounds the eye, or they tighten the actual ligament that holds the eyeball in place. These procedures are performed even though there is no data indicating these structures change with age.

    �Our findings may change the way some plastic surgeons treat baggy eyes,� said study co-author Dr. Timothy Miller, professor and chief of plastic surgery at the Geffen School. �Our study showed that a component of a patient's blepharoplasty procedure should almost routinely involve fat excision rather than these procedures.�

    Blepharoplasty refers to surgical rejuvenation of the upper or lower eyelids, or both, depending on the extent of aging or disease. The procedure is usually performed on the lower eyelid because the most common complaint patients have is that their eyes appear tired, puffy or baggy. The surgeon makes external incisions along the natural skin lines of the eyelid to remove the excess fat and improve the contour of the lower eyelid.

    So in layman�s terms: This new study has shown fat expansion in the eye socket is the primary culprit of saggy eyelids. The next phase of the research will be to perform MRIs of people with baggy eyelids. We should all keep our eyes peeled for those results!

    The Stress � Breast Cancer Connection:

    New research has been released showing both a severe stressful life event in younger year�and� several less severe stressful events can increase a woman�s risk of breast cancer. On the other hand, having an optimistic attitude can decrease the risk.

    Researchers recruited 255 women between 25 and 45 years old who had been diagnosed with breast cancer and 367 women of the same age who were free from the disease. They asked the women whether they had experienced any severe life events, such as loss of a spouse or a close relative, as well as events considered to be mild or moderately stressful, such as severe illness, job loss, or separation from a spouse. Women also completed a 15-item questionnaire to evaluate their levels of anxiety, depression, happiness, and optimism.

    The researchers found women who had experienced two or more severe or mild-to-moderate life events were 62 percent more likely to have breast cancer. "This suggests that stressful events do not protect us from the effect of additional events, and even 'moderate or mild events' seem to have a cumulative effect," Dr. Ronit Peled and her team write in the medical journal BMC Cancer.

    Women with breast cancer were statistically more likely to have higher scores for depression and lower scores for happiness and optimism.

    However, they also found that women with a "general feeling of happiness and optimism" had a 25 percent lower risk of having been diagnosed with breast cancer.

    It�s become abundantly clear over the years that stress is one of the most harmful things you can have in your life.

    Preventing Heart Disease -

    Fish Oil Versus Drugs

    New research has shown fish oil may work better at preventing heart failure than a popular drug.

    Study results: Italian researchers gave nearly 3,500 patients a daily omega-3 pill, derived from fish oils with nearly the same amount receiving placebo pills. Patients were followed for an average of four years.

    In the group of patients taking the fish oil pills, 1,981 died of heart failure or were admitted to a hospital with the problem. In the patients on placebo pills, 2,053 died or were admitted to the hospital for heart failure. (Chronic heart failure is a condition that occurs when the heart becomes enlarged and cannot pump blood efficiently around the body.)

    In a parallel study, the same team of Italian doctors gave 2,285 patients the drug Rosuvastatin, also known as Crestor, and gave placebo pills to 2,289 people. Patients were also tracked for about four years. The doctors found little difference in heart failure rates between the two groups.

    Comparing the results from both studies, the researchers concluded fish oil is slightly more effective than the drug because the oil performed better against a placebo than did Crestor.

    "It's a small benefit, but we should always be emphasizing to patients what they can do in terms of diet that might help," said Dr. Richard Bonow, chief of cardiology at Northwestern University Hospital in Chicago, and past president of the American Heart Association.

    Even though the results were �small�, one must also include the side effects of the drug versus those of fish oil.

    This alone may give you a change of heart�

  2. Inspirational Quote

    Who is wise? He that learns from everyone. Who is powerful? He that governs his Passions. Who is rich? He that is content. Who is that? Nobody �-

    � Benjamin Franklin

  3. Inspirational Story Of The Month

    (Names And Details Have Been Changed To Protect Privacy.

    I Bet You Missed This Incredible Story From The Beijing Olympics�

    Unless you live in a cave� you�ve probably heard the name Michael Phelps. Just a short while ago, Michael became the most decorated athlete in Olympic history by winning a record 8 gold medals in a single Olympics. �Phelps Mania� was everywhere. And Michael�s story is a great one. His mother told how he had a difficult childhood and suffered with ADHD. But, he focused all that restless energy into swimming and became the water speed-demon who we saw shatter so many Olympic records.

    Here�s a story from the Beijing Olympics that just might be better. Much better. Natalie du Toit looked like any other athlete when she walked into the �Bird's Nest� carrying the South African flag at the opening ceremonies. But when it was time to compete� it was a completely different story. The 24-year-old native of South Africa lost half her leg in a horrific accident seven years ago, but she refused to let it derail her hopes of competing against the world�s best athletes. Instead of settling for the Paralympics (though she will remain in Beijing after the games to take part in that competition as well), Du Toit learned how to compensate for her missing leg. Swimming, she said, makes her feel whole again. �I can get in the water and be free of the prosthetic limb," she said in an interview earlier this year. "It's just me.�

    She took fourth at the World Championships in Spain, fulfilling a dream that began when she was 6 years old. "I just want a top-five finish," she said. "It will be a tough race because everyone worked so hard, and I am just looking forward to it. Hopefully the training will pay off. I've been training harder than ever." No one would argue that point. Du Toit was an emerging star in the pool when she swam at the 1998 Commonwealth Games as a 14-year-old. She was aiming for a spot in the Athens Olympics when tragedy struck in 2001.

    After a training session in her native Cape Town, she was headed to school on a motorbike. She collided with a car. She looked down to see her left leg still attached, but with the bones shattered, the muscles ripped apart. Doctors fought desperately to avoid amputation, but finally gave in a week after the accident. The leg was removed at the knee. "I remember waking up later and asking my mother when the operation was going to be," she said. "She told me it already had happened."

    Throughout her recovery, du Toit was driven by a desire to get back in the water. Six months later, she was swimming again. "It was amazing," she said. "It felt like my leg was still there." But Du Toit failed to qualify in the pool for the 2004 Athens Olympics, struggling to keep up in a sport where the legs provide much of the power on starts and turns.

    Then, her career took a promising turn. Open water was added to the program for Beijing. There's no lanes, no flips at the end of each lap. Du Toit was more competitive when she dove in with a pack for a grueling race (10 kilometers, or 6.2 miles, for these games) that relies as much on tactics and willpower as it does on the perfect stroke. Things can get downright nasty as the swimmers jostle for position, and they've been known to emerge from the water with plenty of cuts and bruises. Du Toit doesn't shy away from the rough stuff that goes on beneath the surface. "People out there do punch, kick and you've just got to get through all that and not get bogged down by it," she said. "That's the mental challenge behind it."

    Du Toit was not the first disabled athlete to compete at the Olympics, or even in Beijing. Natalia Partyka, who was born with a right arm that ends just below the elbow, made the Polish team in table tennis. Like du Toit, she will compete in both the Olympics and Paralympics. No disabled Olympian was more successful than American gymnast George Eyser. He won three gold and five medals while competing on a wooden leg at the 1904 St. Louis Games.

    No wonder du Toit was picked by the South African delegation to carry the country's flag at the opening ceremony. "What if I can't carry it, what if I trip and fall, what if ...," she wrote on her blog. Du Toit handled the duties just fine, though it did take a bit of a physical toll. "The standing hurt a little, but it was all worth it," she wrote. "I had tears in my eyes when the flame was lit. I can't describe it. I'm so glad I was part of that." Even though Du Toit didn�t win 8 gold medals in Beijing, she may have achieved even more.

    As a final �Phelps Mania� note: Michael Phelps received a $1 million bonus from Speedo for wearing their product while winning the 8 gold medals. Michael has decided to donate all the money to a water safety charity.

  4. Health Tip of the Month

    6 Of The Best Foods For Under A Dollar !!!

    1. Raw Nuts and Seeds: Sunflower seeds, raw, 1 oz. = $0.82, Mixed raw nuts, 1/2 oz. = $1.00 - Nuts are a good substitute protein for meat, for those of you preferring a vegetarian diet, as long as they aren�t eaten in excess. The reason for moderation is, except for walnuts, almost all nuts are top heavy in omega-6 fats and can upset the omega 6/omega 3 ratio. The average American has an omega 6:3 ratio of 15:1. It should be 1:1. Therefore, any amount of omega-6 fat is not a good thing for most Americans. You need to be cautious with the quantity of nuts you eat, especially if you have high levels of insulin. Nuts are not your best choice if you suffer from high blood pressure, excess weight, high cholesterol, or diabetes.
    2. Berries: 1 cup fresh organic blueberries = $0.95 - Berries are among the best fruits on the planet. Not only do they taste great, they are densely packed with a variety of potent phytochemicals that can do wonders to normalize and improve your health. They are high in fiber and low in sugar, so they won�t cause drastic insulin swings if eaten in moderation. The best way to eat berries is in their raw, natural state, since heating and freezing can damage some of the antioxidants. The different varieties of berries contain different types and levels of antioxidants, so berries have a range of health benefits. Blueberries are one of the most powerful antioxidant-rich foods on the planet. Researchers at the USDA Human Nutrition Center (HNRCA) have ranked blueberries #1 in antioxidant activity when compared to 40 other fresh fruits and vegetables. One of the beneficial phytochemicals is anthocyanin, which is what gives blueberries their deep blue color. They also contain vitamins A and C, zinc, potassium, iron, calcium and magnesium.
    3. Watermelon: One-pound slice = $0.59 - Like berries, watermelon is loaded with phytochemicals, including lycopene, beta-carotene, and citrulline. When citrulline is consumed it is converted to arginine. Arginine is an amino acid that has beneficial effects on the heart and circulatory system, as well as the immune system. Arginine boosts nitric oxide, which relaxes blood vessels, leading to another beneficial side benefit of watermelon ... a Viagra-like effect without the hazards of a toxic drug! 4
    4. Spinach: 5 oz. fresh organic spinach = $0.95 - Spinach is high in antioxidants and has a very high ORAC score. ORAC is Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity, which is a measurement of a food�s ability to destroy the free radicals that cause your body damage. The higher the ORAC score, the better a food is for you. Your own body�s ORAC can also be measured as an indication of how many antioxidants you have working for you. Spinach�s ORAC score is surpassed only by prunes, raisins, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries and kale.
    5. Garlic: 2 cloves = $0.05 - Garlic boosts your body�s natural abilities to protect you from hypertension and osteoporosis, and research is mounting that it decreases your risk for various forms of cancer.
    6. Krill Oil:Two capsules = $0.84 - Krill are small shrimp or prawn-like creatures consumed by the world�s most mammoth animals�the great whales. Toothless great whales gulp down huge quantities of krill to provide the energy they need to fuel their massive bulk. A blue whale eats up to 8,000 pounds of krill each day! There are many ways krill oil can help you. These are just a few:
      • A healthy heart
      • Healthy joints
      • Fighting aging
      • Supporting your brain and nervous system
      • Stabilizing your cholesterol levels
      • Optimizing your mood
      • Keeping your skin healthy. This unusual oil boasts a very comprehensive set of necessary antioxidants not seen in fish or cod liver oil, and it is stable and well-absorbed with a good deal of research to back it up.

  5. Featured Product Of The Month

    The Slim Rest Back Rest Support for Lower Back Pain Relief

    Arc4life's Slim rest Back Rest SupportThis Slimrest Lumbar Support is the ultimate relaxation product for sitting for prolonged periods of time. It has gentle wings to hug you from behind and is made from precision-cut, contoured foam. It comes with a durable fabric cover and the deluxe version comes with a positioning belt. The Lumbar Pillow supports the lower back without being bulky. It provides support to the lumbo-sacral region making your lower back more comfortable and naturally contoured during long periods of sitting. It is great for the car, office or at home. It fits any chair and is excellent for bucket seats. If you sit on the computer for long periods of time, consider using a low back support for complete low back pain relief.

    Read more information on the Low Back Slim Rest Back Rest here. *** All orders will also receive a free 4 oz tube of BioFreeze Natural Pain Relieving Gel*** Expires November 15 2008

  6. Testimonial of the Month- for the Cervical Traction Neck Pillow

    The cervical traction pillow is AWESOME....noticed a difference the very first night I used it! I've suffered for years with my military neck and finally...relief! I've recommended the pillow to several friends with the same problem and they all love it! - Terry, K 10/11/2008

Remember, Arc4life is always here to help you live your life as comfortable as possible through innovative pain relief, traction and support products to help your body heal and maintain the health you deserve.


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