Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Reason for Runners' Good Health

It came to me suddenly on lane 7 of 12 I ran a few minutes ago on the Brattleboro High School track. I think I can identify the reason for runners living longer with much lower incidence of most reasons for most deaths among humans. I had been thinking of ideas of others such as that the liver is responsible for over 200 functions we learned in veterinary school. Also one person refuses to eat liver because it filters out so much waste from our bodies. He does not want that waste in his system. It is correct that the liver is a great cleansing organ of the body among other things. Now suppose when runners exercise much more blood is circulated all through the body including the liver where waste materials are not eliminated by typical slow circulation of blood.
It seems reasonable to me that some toxic substances may build up in the liver in those who lead a sedentary life as compared to the runner who regularly flushes a huge volume of blood through that organ while running. If my thinking is correct there is another possibility and that is that for every problem that is prevented by running, then each may be due to some toxic waste from the environment and not from some strange infective agent not identified. Examples are half as much breast cancer in women runners, many fewer strokes, much less heart disease and longer life all due to toxic stuff in the environment and not due to some unknown infection. It offers researchers a direction to study to be more successful in solving many problems. How's that for another sermon?

To Level Teachers' Fields in Educaton

It has been said in many ways that the finished product often depends on the raw material put in initially. So it is with education. A bright child well on it's way to learning before entering our public education system will be a superior finished product.(some exceptions) With the children in inner cities of most school systems the dropout rate by high school is astounding but understandable. To judge the performance of teachers by class progress as been done with the No Child Left Behind program is unfair to teachers in the inner cities. I have a suggestion to make to put the spotlight on the problem that many educators recognize but little has been done to rectify. Develop a test to be given to the class of students entering the system and to decide on a numerical rating for each class. Say a rating of from 1 to 10. In a suburban area near a school of higher learning as with a university, the children of parents of the area might be expected to be better prepared than those in a depressed inner city population. And a school might register an 8 out of a possible 10 where as the inner city children might be only a 2. Each teacher would spend the first week or so giving tests on vocabulary, reading and writing and arithmetic. At the conclusion it would be expected that the students would climb a given number of rungs of the ladder of learning based on past experience each of marking periods. Parents as well as the students should be told of the importance of learning as it will influence the kind of life the student will be qualified for when older. For a class of 8th graders leaped ahead from a scholarship grade of say 5 to an 8 that teacher might be declared Teacher of the Year or some other honorarium. The classes entering with a 1 or 2 would be shown in need of special education just as other handicapped children are. Many teachers are altruistic in teaching to help children, even disadvantaged children,that they should be recognized for progress in teaching these handicapped children and rewarded for that special contribution. Moreover, recognizing the intellectually disadvantaged should attract interest in improving the lot of the early education that is recognized by most as inadequate for groups of students in cities all over our land. So, coincidentally are gangs of marauding school dropouts in many cities over our land.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

What You Don't know Wont Hurt You?

If you were my vintage you know what the Regular Army used to be. What do you know about it today and why don't you know much?. For example when was the last time you heard the expression, "KP" mentioned? How about,"MP?" I read that there are over 250,000 civilians connected with the troops as support,"Over There." In my day they wore uniforms and were paid soldier's wages, not twice as much. There were "Service Commands" to supply the needs of the troops. I wonder if the waiters who serve the catered food prepared by hirelings get to keep their tips?
Does everybody know that all an enemy has to do to beat our military is to pay off the caterers to stop feeding our troupes and it's all over. Are you so naive that you think people cannot be paid off to get away with anything? All it takes is big bucks. No doubt to get all the back-up military work privatized cost a lot to pay off those who approved the legality of it. We have to assume that over 50% of our legislators have been bought and paid for or the majority would not permit the wealthy minority to get away with it.
Here is a history quiz. Did you learn it in High School or before? Do you agree with it? I do.Who wrote it?
"Corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money-power of the country will endeavor to prolong it's reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all the wealth is aggregated in few hands and the Republic is destroyed." Abraham Lincoln
It's happening before our open eyes. It's time for action.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Short Life of a Diagnosis

The title concerns an issue reported in the N Y Times this morning. It raises some interesting ideas that I would like to mention and perhaps see some comments on. So come along to a conclusion I have reached and play detective with me. Where the issue raised In the Times concerns humans, as a veterinarian I shall add a bit about lower animals to help reach my final thoughts. First there are clues that we must accept. The first one being that pregnant mammals can, by what is ingested, affect developing embryos. The history of pregnant women injuring their developing embryos by what they eat must be agreed upon. An example is the resulting babies born defective from the mothers having ingested the drug, Thalidomide. the second clue, in lower animals an example is a cow ingesting a plant that must be called poisonous when deformed calves are produced after a mothers eating it.
The subject in the Times report was autism and the Asperger Syndrome which together are considered one by many experts.
The next clue concerns the observation of autism. It appeared in a significant number of cases about 1940 and Aspergers was first reported in German in 1944. Prior to those dates if the problem existed, it had not been recognized worthy enough to be named. I believe a case can be made that the problem did not exist prior to about those dates. That statement may be suspect and should be investigated.
Let's go on. If autism is a new disease, science has focused on symptoms and not cause. With such a newborn problem, what are the possible causes? Science must place it in the group with problems such as ALS, cancer and the likes. With autism, could it be in the catagory with such as gastric ulcers?
Between the cause and treatment of gastric ulcers in humans was a 20 or so year period during which time the veterinary profession had identified the cause and treatment for hogs as a bacteria and the treatment. For the higher mammal during the years to find the answer it was speculated that it had a psychological answer and patients were cataloged as certain types of personalities that were involved. scientific papers were published until someone made the discovery that the vet profession had solved that cause and cure 20 years before. The human solution was the same one that cured the pigs without addressing their personalities. My point here is that perhaps the vet profession could help solve the autism problem not even recognized in lower animals. So we are nearing some possible answers. The first question may be, "What could have happened in the environment at around 1940 that could have caused such a problem as autism?" Now let's leave that question to ask again shortly. In about 1940 a new problem appeared in the vet world. It was called hip dysplasia in dogs. It was reported in the literature as a genetic problem but and that but is important because the problem was soon identified in all breeds and genetic traits don't spread from one breed to all breeds in dogdome. Now we can ask the identical question asked above,namely,what could have happened in the environment at around 1940 that could have caused such a problem?" That presents another question, "Could there be something new in the environment that could have affected both humans and canines simultaneously?" Another question comes to mind, "But the problems are so different." an answer could be, "So are the species."
I have tried to answer that question and find that a substance classed as "grass" became popular at about that time and should be suspect until proven otherwise. The word grass stands for, "generally regarded safe." With such a classification and I don't know how that was arrived at, is it possible a toxic substance has flooded our food without having been thoroughly investigated? Of course with new preservatives and combination's of additives, could our testing of combinations of additives fallen through cracks?
We all know that preservatives starting with heating have saved countless human lives but if it is a preservative that depends for effectiveness on the rolling of the dice with some helped and others helped into the grave, a pause is suggested for investigating a possible injurious one.