The Tao of Politics

One of my main concerns is: how can I make a difference? There are thousands of political blogs out there. It’s easy to get lost in that ocean. So I may blog about politics on occasion, or I may blog about health issues, depending on where my interests lead me, and where I feel I can contribute something of significance.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Health Notes

Here is what we are discussing today at The Tao of Health:

Here is an article about the potential importance of DHA omega-3 fatty acids, folic acid, and other B vitamins in protecting our brains as we age. The medication being studied is called Animi-3.

Only 6 percent of American adults exercise thirty minutes per day, and “nearly nine in 10 were unaware the USDA recommends 30 minutes of physical activity” per day. Amazing. And in many areas, including health and politics, we are supposed to trust the American people to be intelligent and informed? Right . . . . Here is an article that reveals more of America’s healthy (or unhealthy?) living habits.

Those with diabetes should probably exercise regularly – it’s something good they can do for themselves -- and yet “only 39% of surveyed adults with diabetes engaged in regular physical activity, compared with 58% of adults who did not have the disease.” I know exercise is often not easy. But if your health literally depended on it, you would think more people would do it. It’s too bad that people don’t always do what is good for them.

If you need to have surgery, it is important to find a good surgeon. It is also important that the surgeon operate on the correct body part. It might help reduce the number of wrong-site surgeries if the surgical team at least briefly discussed the upcoming operation before getting started. I am sure there are other strategies available that could reduce these needless errors.

I guess they are saying that three cups of coffee a day won’t hurt your baby if you’re pregnant, but I still have my doubts. Eight cups might increase the risk of stillbirth, so we know that at some point coffee is not good for a fetus. And I know it is hard to give up coffee, maybe even as hard as giving up cigarettes. I quit drinking coffee a few years ago and it was one of the most difficult things I ever tried to do, so I fully sympathize with anyone who is also trying to quit. I do think that if you’re trying to quit doing something and you find that you can’t do it, then that might be an indication that there is something wrong with it. And pregnancy aside, I wonder if drinking three cups of coffee is good for people anyway. I don’t think so. That’s why I quit.

This study, at least, found no connection between prostate cancer and a number of viruses.

We mentioned recently that gum disease might increase one’s risk of getting pancreatic cancer. Now other experts are saying that “poor dental hygiene is unlikely to increase the risk of cancer.” It is interesting to me how there is so much dispute in the medical community about issues that should be beyond dispute. Either gum disease leads to cancer or it doesn’t. At least that’s how it seems to me.


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