Monthly Archives: April 2013

Are Chemicals Tested for Safety?

A recent article in the New York Times will hopefully get people talking about the complete lack of safety testing of chemicals that are ubiquitous in today’s world. There are now 85,000 chemicals in use in the United States, yet only a very small percentage of these chemicals are tested for safety. I bring attention to this fact whenever I…

Dirty Dozen 2013

Every year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) puts out a list of the most and least pesticide-laden fruits and vegetables so that consumers can make informed decisions about how to purchase these foods. In general, the produce on the Dirty Dozen list, which includes the most toxic produce, should be purchased organic. The clean 15, on the other hand, include…

Children at Risk of Accumulated Toxins from Foods

Foods are supposed to be nourishing, tasty, and health-promoting. Yet even a healthy diet can contain a high amount of toxins that are linked to poor health. When it comes to the diets of children, high toxin content becomes particularly important, considering children’s increased risk of toxicity at lower levels of exposure. In a relatively recent study published in the…

Fecal Bacteriotherapy for Ulcerative Colitis in Children

The great success of fecal bacteriotherapy, or fecal microbial transplant (FMT), for people with recurrent C. difficile infection has researchers investigating this treatment for other digestive diseases, most notably ulcerative colitis. A recent study published in the Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition is the first to study this treatment in children and young adults with ulcerative colitis.1 “Colonic dysbiosis contributes to the development…

Immune Benefits of Omega-3 Fats

The immune benefits of omega-3 fats are generally described as their ability to quell inflammation by balancing the omega-3/omega-6 ratio. Omega-3 fats have an anti-inflammatory effect, and an excess amount of omega-6 fats have an inflammatory effect. Mistaken conclusions have been drawn about the anti-inflammatory effects of omega-3s being immune-suppressive. Dr. Smith has previously helped to explain that immune function…

Fish Oil Supplementation Boosts Young Children’s IQ

Most parents want their children to get ahead in the world, and intelligence level tends to be the measure society uses to gauge the ability to excel. While there are certainly arguments to that point, not many parents would pass up the chance to increase IQ level in their children if they could. A recent study published in the journal…

Inflammation During Pregnancy Linked to Autism

While the number of children with autism increases—currently we’re at one in 50—researchers are trying to determine what factors contribute to its development. In a recent study funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry, researchers found that the risk of autism was increased by 43 percent in mothers with C-reactive protein (CRP)…

Standard American Diet (SAD) Linked to Increased Risk of Colon Cancer Recurrence or Death

The Standard American Diet (SAD)—high in starchy carbohydrates and sugars, unhealthy fats, and meats, and low in nutrient-dense vegetables and fruits—has been linked, yet again, to poor health. This time researchers have found that the SAD diet increases the risk of recurrence or death of stage III colon cancer. In a study published in the Journal of the National Cancer…

Overdiagnosis of Reflux in Infants

Diagnosis of reflux in colicky infants is on the rise. Unfortunately, this means that doctor’s recommendation of acid-suppressing medication in infants is also on the rise. Is it that infants have more reflux than they did in the past, or are doctors overdiagnosing reflux (just as they do in adults)? According to a recent study published in the journal Pediatrics,…

Gut Microbe May be Responsible for Your Weight Gain

Currently, researchers worldwide are studying the contribution of the gut microbiota (the 100 trillion bacteria that reside in our gut) to human health and disease. In the United States, the Human Microbiome Project is making a dent in this broad field of study, with researchers discovering how little we really know about this vast population that lives within and on…