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ARTHRITIS I try my best to stay up on the latest medical advancements. One of the newsletters that I used to subscribe to is the Mayo Clinic Health Letter. In the last issue was a special report entitled, Arthritis: Reducing pain, overcoming obstacles and leading an active life. Not only was I appalled by no mention of the incredible, ground breaking, research in Germany and Amsterdam, but also by no mention of the effects of diet on arthritis. Dr. Colon Dong discovered this relationship between diet and arthritis over fifty years ago. Many years ago I suffered from osteoarthritis myself and underwent standard western medicine treatment of drugs and surgery. A therapist that worked for me suffered rheumatoid arthritis and was being treated with diet only by Dr. Dong. On his diet she went from severe pain to being a ski instructor. This led me further into alternative medicine and now I am completely free of all arthritis. What annoys me is how so many doctors are so committed to the pharmaceutical industry that they refuse to study anything alternative. Included in the Mayo article was a little box on the side putting down alternative medicine. A full page was devoted to the many drugs they use. One of the researchers in the ground breaking work I mentioned is Dr. Paul-Peter Tak. Dr. Tak is a professor of rheumatology at the University of Amsterdam. While working with suppression of the immune system for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, it was discovered that stimulating the vagus nerve stopped the production of TNF, a.k.a. tumor necrosis factor, a very poisonous product of the innate immune system. By implanting a pacemaker in the chest with wires to the neck where the vagus nerve descends from the brain, patients could regulate the variability of this nerve. Patients with rheumatoid that was so severe they were bedridden, were back to normal activities. Two psychologists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Barbara Fredrickson and Bethany Kok, were studying vagus nerve variability and were able to link it to attitude. A group of 70 volunteers were tested, of which 35 were taught meditation technique to promote feelings of goodwill toward themselves and others. Those who meditated showed significant rise in vagal tone. These results have the potential to make very significant changes in medicine. A L I V E E A S T B 34 A Y j a n u a r y 2 0 1 6 According to Dr. Paul-Peter Tak, “It is becoming increasingly clear that we can’t see organ systems in isolation like we did in the past…it’s very clear that the human is one entity: mind and body are one. It sounds logical, but it’s not how we looked at it before. Now we have new data and new insights.” In my TMJ practice, for years I have been treating the causes and the patient, not just the symptoms. It takes more of my time to approach TMD treatment this way. It requires more listening to the patient, with extensive Q & A; more study in other fields; as well as more patient cooperation, but the results are so much more rewarding. ROBERT J. BROWN, DDS


Alive_Jan_2016
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