Not a protein in sight.
This morning I went out to my hotel’s common room to read in its comfortable chairs. The large space also serves as the breakfast room.
Of the approximately 40 adults I counted, most were fat. Not ‘plump’, but fat. The rest were just overweight, except for one guy who was very skinny. I suspect he was a meth user (based on tattoos, dress and other mannerisms).
So, including the meth guy, I figured… yep, all of them are going to be pretty expensive for the “free” health care I was forced to fund in 2010.
Since most of them likely aren’t spending their own tax dollars on their health care, they are spending my money to cover their biscuit and gravy induced diabetes. And I can’t say I’m too happy with their choice for my money. Nope. Not at all! Not personally. And not as a nation.
If you want to force me to pay for nuclear plants so we can have cheap electricity… heck I might even chip in more than you ask. But putting a gun to my head and forcing me to cover your pastry and Frosted Flakes habit… doesn’t that seem wrong even to you?
If you inherited diabetes, or had an accident, hey, …I’m happy to help. But paying for your Type 2 diabetes caused by a pancreas blown by a syrup and cola induced perpetual sugar load hardly seems “charity”. It’s theft.
As an aside, I asked myself, “What would happen if the hotel put out good food to eat?”. Sadly I knew the answer… A lot of chunky folks griping. Sigh.
There’s hope Weeble!
Instapundit links to a roundup of “fat pills” that are in testing or on the horizon. Zafgen interested me:
Zafgen has a whole new approach to fighting obesity. In animal studies, the approach burned off body weight at the rate of 25 percent. "Once you treat animals, you see a retraction in the size of fat tissue," says CEO Tom Hughes. Fuel is burned off, appetite goes down, fat is released and the metabolism is stimulated. Dangerous liver fat dwindles and there’s an improvement in insulin activity.
Sounds like 4 Hour Body… in a pill.
Given the expense, in money and lives, that obesity takes thru diabetes and heart issues, you would think this would be FAST TRACKED by the FDA. But you would think wrong.
Why We Get Fat (and what to do about it)
I reviewed the book a couple weeks back. Here is an interview with the author that you might find interesting.
And I agree with you: the world is full of obese and diabetic people who know enough not to eat sugar, but remain obese and diabetic. I could avoid sugar and go back to eating starches and put on 20 pounds of fat effortlessly. I’ve done it in the past — distant past. So I don’t buy the idea that avoiding sugar is enough to make an obese person lean again. And the people I know who believe that all tend to be somewhat plump despite their beliefs. In fact, I recently heard Dr. Lustig give a talk in San Francisco, and he acknowledged that he still has a weight problem, but doesn’t know what to do about it. Hmmm….
You will recall that he is in line with the 4 Hour Body belief that sugar and carb caused insulin resistance is what makes us fat.
He also describes fighting the “calories in / out” crowd, even in light of all the evidence (scientific and right in front of them) that that theory isn’t how fat actually happens.
I can afford it myself if my wife needs it. Why keep me from buying it FDA?
In a country where other people’s money is allocated by voting block, women with breast cancer apparently don’t vote or donate often enough to escape the FDA’s death panels. In a move done entirely based on money the FDA intends to revoke approval for the breast cancer drug Avastin.
However, many American women are getting something priceless in return for those dollars: life and vitality. In one clinical trial, nearly 50% of patients receiving Avastin witnessed their tumors shrink. Another study found that patients receiving the drug in conjunction with chemotherapy lived “progression-free” twice as long as patients without it.
Sure it is expensive. But the FDA shouldn’t be basing approvals on cost. This way, even woman who can self-fund it won’t have access to it. Is that the FDA line now? You have to die early because a poor woman has to die early?
The right answer is to base the drug approval decisions on medical merit to the specific patient. The longer right answer is to disband the FDA and let doctors and the market manage drug introductions. They will do just fine without the FDA.
This is just another in a long line of the government doing too much, and doing it poorly.
A judge declared the mandate part of ObamaCare unconstitutional today. This was surprising, that a judge actually was well versed in the Constitution. But pleasing.
But… I can’t but be concerned that this was what they wanted all along. Let’s think it through:
Obama really wants socialized medicine.
Insurance companies let private people band together to handle this on their own.
Insurance companies were required to cover people with pre-existing condition.
To offset this, everybody had to buy insurance via “the mandate”.
Now nobody will buy insurance until they are sick.
Thus raising rates for those that do. They leave the pool.
Thus killing insurance companies.
Thus making the only “banding” together a governmental option – aka socialized medicine.
I suppose I’m happy that this judge knew the Constitution, and that this action could delay the damage ObamaCare does before it is repealed. But if it isn’t repealed, then we are hosed faster than we would have been without this court case.
A suspend button for humans
I just read a book where injured space soldiers were shot with “Suspend” which suspended their bodily functions, permitting months or years doctors to work on them. Now, in today’s Telegraph Science Fiction joins real life…:
Researchers are now set to begin the first human trials of the technique, which involves replacing a patient’s blood with a cold solution to rapidly chill body temperatures.
Apparently it works really well in animals, and they expect it to work well in humans too. But suspending cellular operations you stop the build up of toxins that the blood stream would normally clear away – and that are what kills the brain in traumatic injury situations:
At normal body temperatures, brain death typically occurs in around four or five minutes as, at low oxygen levels, cells start to produce toxins that ultimately kill them.
By cooling the body so much, the cells are essentially put into a state of suspended animation that prevents this from happening.
They do it by replacing blood with a chilly solution that drops the body’s temperature to 10c (50 degrees F). They then have time to operate and fix injuries, who if not frozen would have died quickly from lack of circulation. Then they warm them up and they have no apparent damage from the cooling.
I wonder if you can use this to kill cancer cells? Anyway, as Instapundit says… Faster Please.
Obligatory symbolic picture
My company’s health insurance rates went up 16% this year. They had been going up 12%, but that quote was pulled back, and another one issued that was higher. I was told, directly and explicitly, that the new increase was directly tied to the new Obamacare law. In particular, to new coverage they were required to provide.
Since I was already very happy with our coverage, I didn’t appreciate an additional $8,000 dollars annually to cover whatever bones Obama threw to various special interests who donated money to him and thus got coverage in this bill. Examples are OB/GYN coverage without referral, forcing health plans to cover early retirees, and restrictions on annual coverage limits.
This is how corruption works in America. Special interests donate a relatively small, but focused, amount to Obama and a few Senators. Tens of thousands of small business owners like myself then each pay the interests $8,000 annually in new medical coverage we didn’t want.
Hundreds of thousands leverages billions in forced spending.
Welcome to modern America. Where those who are supposed to serve us actually rob us blind.
Some will say this is how Democracy works. They will refer to “sausage making” and other cute anecdotes. But, I’d say, no… this is how corruption works. Democracy has nothing to do with it.
Utah Waste of Money
I pay a lot for health insurance for my employees. Labor healthcare costs are my 2nd largest expense, and they are going up 16% this year. I’d heard about the”Utah Health Exchange” with an implication it could save me money. So I went to check it out.
Here is the Employers info page on the Exchange website. I’ll excerpt part of it:
Employer Application Details: During the registration process, the following information will be requested: information about your company, your current health insurance plan information, information about your producer, your new hire waiting period, copies of your latest Quarterly Wage and Tax Form, your latest health insurance carrier bill and a standard census file.
So, let me get this right. There is NO information on how the Exchange benefits my company on this page (or the site). BUT please give us your Quarterly Wage and Tax form and our health insurance bill and census.
Why would I do this?
At the end it suggests strongly that I “work with a producer”. Well I do. And what does this Exchange do that they don’t already do? My producer (agent) already offers me up plans from all these companies. And MSA, HSA, FSA and any number of other acronyms.
WHY did the state spend millions setting up this silly website and Exchange? Why do they hide any benefits it might provide?
I suspect because there are none.
Popular Science has an interesting article about advances in auto-immune drugs for Diabetes Type I treatment:
The perfect immune-modulating drug would target only the part of the system causing the problem. As of now, however, most immunosuppressive drugs work by dampening the entire immune system, which leaves the patient susceptible to short-term problems like infections and long-term afflictions as severe as cancer.
The new drug successfully kept most of the trial patients producing insulin at the two year mark. That is good news. The bad news…. that was 2001, and a drug you or I could be prescribed is a “couple years away”. That is too slow. I don’t know how much of the slowdown is bureaucracy, how much is science caring more about science than patients, funding, or just plain being hard – but I know that 3 of those obstacles could be eased.
I’ve tried one of the new Rheumatoid Arthritis drugs that suppress the immune system, but stopped due to side effects. Something that kept the body from attacking my joints, but didn’t keep it from fighting the flu would be pretty useful.
A recent finding by a New York researcher could be an important step to stopping Alzheimer’s Researchers have been trying to prevent growth of the plaque that causes Alzheimer’s by preventing a core component of it (gamma secretase which is used to make beta amyloid) from being made. But the methods found so far of stopping it had too many other side effects elsewhere in the body.
Dr. Greengard has found a way of stopping gamma secretase in the brain only.
That was what he had found: a targeting protein that sets in motion the activity of gamma secretase, which makes beta amyloid. To further test the discovery, he genetically engineered a strain of mice that had a gene for Alzheimer’s, but he blocked the gene for the gamma secretase activating protein. The animals appeared to be perfectly healthy. And they did not develop plaques in their brains.
As usual, more work is needed. Primarily in how to keep the drug in the brain.
I hope this work is fast tracked, and I hope the FDA pulls its act together and realizes and permits Alzheimers and cancer drugs to market much quicker. Time is running out for tens of millions entering the years of life where these diseases take hold.
After seeing my grandmother suffer from Alzheimer’s I do not think there is a pill or shot I wouldn’t gladly risk to avoid that fate. Almost any side effect would be better.
Me, outside my hotel. Not! Actually it is Bikram Choudhury
Yoga is REALLY good for you. I can testify to that. Hot Yoga has helped me avoid chronic hip pain, sleep better, lose weight, and surprisingly, improve my complexion.
Lacking a Hot Yoga studio in St. George (which I may just remedy!), I’m taking advantage of our 107 degree summer, and I just practice outside in the shade of the hotel. I don’t sweat nearly as much due to our 20% humidity ( a normal Hot Yoga studio is at 60% humidity). But it still helps.
So what does science say?
Practicing yoga may do more than calm the mind — it may help protect against certain diseases, a new study suggests.
In the study, women who had practiced yoga regularly for at least two years were found to have lower levels of inflammation in their bodies than did women who only recently took up the activity.
I recommend it, although like many physical activities the first few times may be shockingly difficult (especially Hot Yoga). Keep on trying and you soon wonder how you could ever miss a session.
Another good thing… unlike other exercises, I’ve never been sore after a Yoga Practice.
Give it a go!
Source: The fabulous internet
Subsequent trials have repeated these results, showing again and again that patients who undergo aerobic exercise regimens see comparable improvement in their depression as those treated with medication, and that both groups do better than patients given only a placebo.
This makes sense. I wish doctors would prescribe exercise more instead of offering up the latest pill.
Alas, few studies on it because it doesn’t sell drugs. Maybe Nike should fund a study.
Kind of odd looking, but very comfortable and theraputic.
I have plantar fasciitis. It affects me in three major ways. First, my feet hurt unless I wear proper shoes. Second, I can’t really go barefoot at all or my feet will ache madly. Third, my shoe costs have exploded. No more Payless for me. My closet is full of Ecco, Dansk and other shoes costing $100 or more.
I bought a pair of Skechers Cadence Shapeup sandals yesterday. Skechers recommends wearing them in small doses initially, but I wore them out of the store and walked about 1.5 miles around the large outlet center I bought them in. I then wore them the rest of the evening, to dinner, and around the hotel.
AND MY FEET FEEL GREAT. Often my feet keep me awake after a long day on them, but not today – they felt great.
I can’t attest to the posture, weight and strength claims Skechers makes for these shoes. I’ll report on that after a month or two wearing them. But I can say that if you have plantars fasciitis you will definitely want to try them on.
Nickki Buck hears her first words in 10 years after having cochlear implants installed.
It is shocking, and silly, to me that many in the deaf “community” oppose this. Being deaf may not be a disability from many parts of life, but it still sucks. To not hear music? Or my kids singing, or birds chirping – when I could again? Not partaking of all of natures bounty, when you can, just seems silly.
I visited MIT and Massachusetts Eye and Ear researchers working on these 15 years ago, and I’m glad their research has come far enough to help the typical deaf person.
Check out 8 other videos of people hearing for the first time.