Selenium

January 22, 2018

Selenium: a trace mineral found in some foods and the earth.

A mineral primarily necessary as a cofactor in cellular reactions related to reproduction, hormone synthesis, DNA synthesis and immune function. It specifically helps protect against toxic oxygen radicals and oxidative damage.

I love selenium because it helps to recycle the most important antioxidant/chemical clearance molecule

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Bilingualism

January 22, 2018

 

"What do we know about bilingualism? Much of what we once thought we knew - that speaking two languages is confusing for children, that it poses cognitive challenges best avoided - is now known to be inaccurate. Today, bilingualism is often seen as a brain-sharpening benefit, a condition that can protect

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Iron

January 1, 2018

Iron: Fourth on my list of imprortant minerals. Could be first actually!

A mineral primarily necessary for carrying oxygen around our body via hemoglobin proteins on our red blood cells. It is also found in a storage form called ferritin in our liver, spleen and bone marrow or as myoglobin in our muscles.

It is critical for the function of oxygen transport, muscle metabolism, neurologic and intracellular signal transmission. It is also critical for hormone

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Loneliness II

January 15, 2018

Adolescence is a trying time. They need us daily even though they seem to despise our ideas and overtures. We need to be aware that the family structure that provides support for many children has changed. Work often interferes with parenting. Recognizing these changes as they exist in each child's world is the first step in identifying a potential lonely child in need. Changing the family, work or local social structure may be impossible, however, being aware of these differences can lead us to find ways to mitigate the child's lonely feelings.

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Calcium

January 8, 2018

Calcium: Third on my list of imprortant minerals.

A mineral involved in many reactions in the body! It is found primarily in our bones and teeth as a storage site. The body carefully regulates calcium levels by stealing from the bones when the system needs more.

It is critical for the function of blood vessels, muscles, neurologic and intracellular signal transmission. It is also critical for hormone secretion. This covers every aspect of feeling good and moving with fluidity.

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Loneliness

January 8, 2018


Humans like many animal species like to live or interact in groups. The species in general has historically benefited from collective grouping behaviors. Safety in numbers and shared food collection has allowed humans to live and thrive. Human groupings are like social concentric circles with country at the large end and family unit at the small end. It is at the extended family sized ring that people really benefit from psychologically through intimate love, education of values and elder wisdom and perceived safety.

Over the past half century, grouping behaviors have changed dramatically for many Americans. We are collectively more siloed in our activity and beliefs. We have no collective wars to fight or famine to ward off. The greatest generation grew up out of the ashes of World War II and learned that being in a group had major advantages. They also knew how to compromise. Crisis has a perverted way of uniting disparate groups for the common good.

Fast forward to 2018, the majority of Americans have very little to

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Zinc

January 1, 2018

Zinc: Second on my list of imprortant minerals.

A mineral involved in over 100 enzymatic reactions in the body! It is necessary in adequate levels for cellular metabolism.

It is critical for the function of our immune system, our skin and our gut lining. These systems are so important to everyday health.

At the cellular level zinc is necessary for protein synthesis, DNA synthesis and cellular repair in wound healing.

Zinc is primarily found in the brain, muscles, bones, kidney, liver and prostate. It is yolked to copper in serum concentrations. Low zinc is associated with elevated copper and this is associated with neurological abnormalities.

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Concussions and the Gut

January 1, 2018

Happy New Year!

Concussions: otherwise known as TBI, traumatic brain injury

We have discussed TBI many times, however, some hot off the press cutting edge data needs to be added to the discussion.

What we know about TBI is evolving rapidly.In the latest edition of Neuroscience news, the authors discuss newanimal data proving that there is a cross

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Magnesium

December 25, 2017

A major cofactor in over 300 enzymatic reactions in the body! It is necessary in adequate levels for energy production, insulin function, protein synthesis and blood pressure regulation as well as muscle/nerve function. This encompasses every major system in the body!
Oh and by the way, you need it to make DNA/RNA and the detoxifying chemical glutathione (my personal favorite). Magnesium is located about half in our bones and the other half in tissues. Our blood has less than 1%. Our kidneys keep the blood level of magnesium in tight control.
Magnesium is insanely important to us! Where can we get it? The best HEALTHY sources of mag are spinach, nuts, beans, oatmeal, avocado, soy, potato and banana. Fish, chicken and beef have reasonable amounts as well.
Insufficiency and deficiency occurs primarily in people with gastroenterological disorders (Crohns, celiac and ulcerative colitis), alcoholism, type 2 diabetes and a poor quality diet. Medicines like antacid proton pump inhibitors, certain antibiotics and diuretics will lower magnesium levels.Adults need to be aware of the fact that most drugs have a negative effect on micronutrient function. If you are taking a chronic medicine, know the side effects on micronutrients.
Magnesium deficiency causes problems with blood pressure control and heart function.

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Micronutrients Tour Reboot

December 25, 2017

A new year of newsletters. As I stated last week, I have decided to start this year with a reboot of the weekly mineral and vitamin tutorial. The children that I see in clinic are frequently insufficient in critical micronutrients and it is very clear to me that Americans are consuming the wrong foods, leaving our cells wanting micronutrients that we do not provide. Ultimately, this causes our cells to work on a half tank of fuel, inefficient and dysfunctional!

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Myths vs Hardwork

December 25, 2017

Myths: What is more necessary, raw talent or practice?
Can we do anything? Placebo effects?

With a new year upon us, I thought that it would be fun to dispel a few myths as they relate to humans.

Bounce is a book written by Matthew Syed about the myth of talent over practice. It has long been thought that humans are successful primarily because of talent and only secondarily because of work ethic and practice.

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Winter

December 18, 2017

We all prepare for the change in weather in different ways. We prep the house for cold snaps. We bring out cold weather gear. We prepare for ski vacations. We get to stop mowing the yard. Kids generally just play. And that is a good thing. 

What are the winter related concerns for kids?

1) Make sure that they are getting adequate vitamin D. Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin meaning that it stores for a period of time in fat cells. Generally most people begin to wane in their D levels early in the winter when it is very hard to get adequate D from the sun. I recommend daily supplementation based on blood levels. Vitamin D and K combinations are the best based on current data. Cod liver oil and oily fish are a good source of omega 3 fats and vitamin D.

2) Stay warm but don't sweat the shorts. Kids often under dress in the winter. The rule of thumb should always be that they bring a coat along to keep warm in case of a chill or sudden change in temperature.

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Music and Health

December 18, 2017

Music is the sound that soothes the savage beast. For years we have heard this phrase thrown around in response to how to handle a frustrated person, animal or situation.

I am a self proclaimed music lover!

I spend a large percentage of my day listening to beautiful sounds that emanate from any speaker that I am near. I am convinced that it not only soothes me but helps untangle my cluttered monkey mind.

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Goals

December 11, 2017

What are some goals that we can set for personal and collective growth this year?

1) I think that meditation/prayer is a unique human need to balance and calm the modern monkey mind of negativity and self doubt. The world will not get less complex or easier from a stress perspective. Let us teach our kids how to balance at young ages.

2) Let us spend much time teaching our children to see the individual first and not the peripheral biased opinions of color, creed or gender.

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7 Year Newsletter Anniversary

December 11, 2017

7 Years have passed since I wrote the first Salisbury Pediatrics Health and Wellness Newsletter. Including this newsletter, that means that 726 articles and other tidbits have crossed the airwaves hoping to change lives, perspectives and generally lead to a more meaningful existence for all.

It has been a very rewarding experience as I have learned much during the process of trying to keep the information relevant and modern. It is like having a fitbit for learning as every week I task myself with completing two articles that are worthy of your time. In the end, I think that I read and search more than I otherwise may have because of you the reader.

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Marijuana & Parenting

December 4, 2017

Is marijuana safe for use? The American sentiment seems to be shifting that way, especially out in the wild west. When it comes to drugs that affect the brain, we have to be very careful to conclude this on a population level.

College students have to leave school every year secondary to psychological breaks that are induced by drug use including marijuana. I witnessed this first hand as I went to a very small school and things of this nature were hard to hide.

For me, the biggest concern with recreational drug use has always been the long term effects on the

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Shopping

November 27, 2017

Whenever we shop, we are battling the advertisers desire to get us to buy their product whether it is good for us or not. Think soda or lunch packaged meat/cheese/bread combos here for poor choices. We rarely see advertisers pushing us to buy vegetables or fruit or anything healthy for that matter. When researchers looked at the checkout line where a parent is waiting in cue, they found that the majority of foods located there were not healthy. This is the classic captive audience exposure hot spot that pushes purchasing behavior.

What would be great for us all would be for grocery stores to load this area with healthy choices. A 2014 Norwegian study found that by doing exactly that, last minute sales of healthy items spiked.

Ideally, we need to be aware of the marketing gimmicks that we fall prey to, because we do! They are better at this than we are.

Simple grocery store rules that can alter your health:

1) Avoid purchasing any food that has a cartoon character on it. Never a good choice.

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Children and Outdoors

November 27, 2017

Nature Deprivation Disorder is thought to be a serious problem for humans. Nature deficit disorder is a phrase coined by Richard Louv in his 2005 book Last Child in the Wood. He thought that human beings, especially children, were spending less time outdoors resulting in a wide range of behavioral problems (1).

What is the reality of this perceived condition? If you believe the contention put forth by Mr. Louv, humans are less exposed to the natural world and are also exposed to constant negative media influences that let them feel unsafe about the outside world causing them to shun imaginative and exploratory activity outside in nature. Both of these statements appear true to me. When I think back to my childhood, there was a huge difference in our outdoor unsupervised play compared to what I see now.

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Roy Halladay

November 20, 2017

 

When I talk to kids at work, I often reference Stoicism and work ethic as the single most important guide to success. With the recent passing of Roy Halladay, a blog that I receive called the Daily Stoic had a piece on Roy Halladay. And it was excellent. Here are some of the highlights to share with your child.

"He was the single most accountable, conscientious, hardworking, dedicated player I've ever been around," Amaro said. "He was the most competitive on the mound and yet the kindest and gentlest person off the mound that you could imagine. That kind of person is so rare."

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Thankful

November 20, 2017

Thanksgiving is a special time to be thankful for living in America. It is especially necessary this year as we battle the fires of a divided and partisan country that are stoked daily by modern national media outlets that are more interested in ratings than responsible positive journalism. Inflaming both sides equally like a well seasoned pharmaceutical lobbyist, they push their polarizing agenda on us even though we are mostly moderate in our beliefs and hopeful of peace and happiness.

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