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Volume 9, No 2 | March 2011

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EDITOR’S LETTER

Comfortable with Healthcare Reform Editorial Staff Editor Jonathan Edelheit jon@employerhealthcarecongress.com

Assistant Editor Sarah Hunt

Jonathan Edelheit Editor-In-Chief

Advertising Sales

jon@employerhealthcarecongress.com

T

info@CorporateWellnessMagazine.com

he dust is finally settling from healthcare reform. As an industry we are starting to see everyone understanding how healthcare reform works and will effect them and they are starting to get back to business as usual and moving forward. It is nice to see the industry no longer stuck on an uncertain future, not sure what direction to move in, or even to move at all because of how unsure they were about healthcare reform Everyone has gotten into their post healthcare reform routine, and they are finally comfortable with it. Some may not be happy with it, they may not even like it, but they finally understand it and are moving forward accordingly. This is important, because our industry needs to move forward and not be stuck in time, or so focused on uncertainty that we are afraid to make decisions.

Grapghic Designer Tercy U. Toussaint For any questions regarding ad� vertising, permissions/ reprints, or other general inquiries, please contact:

Sarah Hunt ASSISTANT EDITOR 561.204.3676 PHONE 866.536.7041 FAX Sarah@CorporateWellnessmagazine.com

Jonathan Edelheit

E-MAIL

Copyright © 2011Corporate Wellness Magazine. All rights reserved. Corporate Wellness Magazine is published monthly by Global Health Insurance Publications. Material in this publication may not be reproduced in any way without express permission from Corporate Wellness Magazine. Requests for permission may be directed to info@ CorporateWellnessMagazine.com. Corporate Wellness Magazine is in no way responsible for the content of our advertisers or authors.

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WELLNESS FOR WOMEN

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THE COLON CANCER REALITY

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~ OVARIAN CANCER AND YOUR WELLBEING

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7 STRATEGIES FOR PREVENTING CANCER IN YOUR CORPORATE EMPLOYEES

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A NEW WELLNESS INTERVENTION THAT CAN INCREASE CANCER SCREENING RATES FOR EMPLOYERS

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CANCER IS A CALL TO ACTION

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EVERYTHING I KNOW ABOUT CANCER I LEARNED FROM MY BEST FRIEND

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AVOIDING CANCER

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CANCER ~ A CELLULAR PERSPECTIVE

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EARLY DETECTION IS KEY ~ BREAST CANCER AWARENESS

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EMPLOYER SPONSORED CANCER SCREENING

FOLLOW US ON:


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Corporate Wellness Magazine

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w w w. C o r p o r a t e We l l n e s s M a g a z i n e . c o m

June 2011


W O R K S I T E W E L L N E S S

A New Wellness Intervention that Can Increase Cancer Screening Rates for Employers

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By Dr. Bruce Sheman

By David Nikka

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s a component of corporate wellness programs, cancer screening provides one of the most direct and immediate health benefits. It requires only simple testing versus long term, sustained behavior modification and there is significant clinical and economic value in catching cancer early in its most treatable stage. As such, cancer screening has been an important benefit design consideration for employers for a number of years. Yet despite efforts to increase use of recommended screening tests, participation rates have been less than ideal, such that the benefit of this valuable wellness component has not been fully realized. In this article, we report on the results from a pilot of an innovative, cost-effective program

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that has the potential to significantly increase cancer screening rates for employers.

Why Early Cancer Detection is a Vital Wellness Issue Most cancers have few symptoms in their early stages. In general, symptoms don’t appear until the cancer has grown and perhaps spread, when the cancer is more difficult to treat. However, the outlook for cancer survival and even cure can be very good if cancers are diagnosed early in their most treatable stage (Figure 1). This is why many organizations have promoted the use of and compliance with cancer screening guidelines, including those from the


US Preventive Services Task Force, the American Cancer Society, and numerous physician specialty organizations.

Figure 1. 5 Year Cancer Relative Survival Rates by Stage at Detection

Cancer

Early Stage

Late Stage

Breast

99%

23%

Prostate

100%

29%

Cervical

91%

19%

Colorectal

90%

12%

While diagnosing cancer early improves survival odds, it also reduces metastatic disease and the costs and morbidity associated with chemo/radiation therapy and necessary surgical treatment. Cancer has been reported to be the leading cause of long-term disability and the second leading cause of intermittent short-term disability for U.S. employers (Figure 2).

National Cancer Institute, Seer Stat Fact Sheets, accessed 5/2011

Figure 2.

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Most Frequent Disabling Conditions

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Early detection of cancer provides the opportunity for curative treatment and can minimize the significant healthcare expense of latestage disease. The cost of treatment in the last year of life for cancer patients under the age of 65 who die of breast, cervical, prostate or colorectal cancer ranges from $93,000 to $129,000 (Figure 3).


Figure 3. Annual Cost of Care for Selected Cancers vs. Other Causes

Mariott A, et al, Projections of the Cost of Cancer Care in the United States: 2010–2020. JNCI 2011; 103:2

Figure 4. Aggregate Drug Cost for Metastatic Colorectal Cancer Treatment

The CEO Roundtable on Cancer reports that companies spend on average $3,000 in direct annual medical costs for employees without cancer vs. $16,000 for those with cancer. The National Business Group on Health states that the cost of cancer treatment is typically among the top three most costly conditions representing on average 12% of total medical expenses. The cost of late stage cancer care is also rising. For example, according to the Colon Cancer Alliance, the cost of early diagnosis of colon cancer is about $30,000. In contrast, the treatment cost for delayed diagnosis ranges from $120,000 or more with newer available treatment options. This is largely a result of chemotherapy costs, which have risen by as much as 800% between 1996 and 2007 (Figure 4).

Adapted from: Meropol N, Schulman. Cost of Cancer Care: Issues and Implications, J Clin Oncol 2007;25:180-186.

Current Status of Cancer Screening mammography. Depending on health benefits costs and access to care, screening rates for Colorectal cancer screening has perhaps the individual employers are often even lower. lowest participation rate of all screening tests, with nationally reported compliance rates In an effort to promote cancer screening, many of 54%, according to the Healthy People employers have eliminated out-of-pocket costs 2020 website (http://www.healthypeople. for screening tests; healthcare reform legislation gov/2020/topicsobjectives2020/objectiveslist. incorporates such first-dollar coverage as well. aspx?topicid=5). Approximately one-third This removes the financial barrier for employees of all women still do not receive annual to seek screening, but doesn’t necessarily

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motivate them to get screened. Other factors that contribute to low cancer screening rates include lack of understanding the relative importance and value of cancer screening, perceptions regarding the testing process and options, as well as access and convenience concerns.

The telephonic intervention was provided by ScreenCancer, Inc. which utilizes an outbound call-center approach and comprehensive, tailored algorithms optimized for individual healthcare conversations. The service provided assessment, education, test facilitation when requested, and follow-up to maximize completion of recommended testing. A Midwest Employer Study dedicated call center Navigator was assigned It is not difficult to appreciate that from an to each participant throughout the program. employer perspective, regular participation of Cancers included in the screening program were employees and family members in recommended breast, cervical, prostate and colorectal. cancer screening represents a source of value. While employers may be aware of low Participants were contacted at home at times compliance with one or more cancer screenings, selected during enrollment. The initial call began few options have been available to meaningfully with a review of each individual’s personal risk increase screening rates. Recently, an innovative factors and screening history. Depending on approach to increase cancer screening rates has the information obtained, targeted educational been developed using individualized telephonic information was provided along with a decision support. Our study, described below, discussion of appropriate screening options. evaluates the effectiveness of this program in an For colorectal cancer, colonoscopy was stressed as the best option (and the only option for those employer setting. at increased risk). If participants did not want colonoscopy, they were offered the option of Methods an at-home fecal immunochemical test (FIT) sent directly to them. Initial calls ranged from Employees and spouses aged 50 or older of 10-15 minutes, and participants received up to a county government in the Midwest were three follow-up calls to answer questions and given the opportunity to participate in a novel track and encourage completion of testing. The telephonic health outreach program designed program ran for four months from the start of to increase compliance with recommended enrollment through the last call. cancer screening guidelines. The program was voluntary and communicated to employees by mail, email, benefits meetings and was an Results offering at an annual health fair. Individuals could enroll onsite, by phone or on a dedicated One hundred twenty eight individuals signed up website. The existing employer self- for the program, with 12 not responding to initial insured health benefits design had, for some outreach communications. Of the remaining time, provided first-dollar coverage for all 116, 68 (59%) were already compliant with all recommended screening tests, so no financial recommended cancer screening, leaving 48 (19 barrier existed to individual compliance with males and 29 females) who were due or past due for preventive care services, as shown in testing.

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Figure 5. At the end of the program, 31 (65%) of these individuals successfully completed all of their recommended cancer screening services, bringing the overall compliance of the group to 85%. The effectiveness of the ScreenCancer Navigator™ approach in increasing compliance with screening for specific cancer types is shown in Figure 6. Of the different types listed, compliance with recommended colorectal cancer screening demonstrated the largest increase, with a 27% relative improvement in overall screening compliance and a post-program compliance rate of 87%, well above the national average of 54% (Healthy People 2020).

Figure 5. Pre and Post-Program Compliance with All Recommended Cancer Screenings

Figure 6. Pre and Post-Program Compliance with Recommended Screening by Cancer Type

A post-program survey was also conducted where participants were asked to rate their experience with the program on a scale of 1-5 (5 highest). The overall satisfaction rating was 4 out 5 with the results of individual categories shown in Figure 7.

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Figure 7. Pre and Post-Program Compliance with Recommended Screening by Cancer Type

Discussion Existing communication and education strategies to promote cancer screening have helped to increase awareness and understanding of the value of testing and early diagnosis, yet overall screening rates remain less than optimal. The recently released Healthy People 2020 goals include a targeted colon cancer screening rate of 70.5% among adults aged 50-75 years, and increases of 10% for both breast and cervical cancer screening rates. The program used in this pilot is based on methods which have been shown to increase cancer screening in other settings. These include a study of more than 1400 patients enrolled in a one-on-one patient education program similar to the ScreenCancer Navigator that found patient adherence with prescribed use of a molecular colorectal cancer test increased from 29% to 73% (Bagshaw J, Bucher W, Am J Gastroenterology, 2006;101:S549). Other studies including variations of telephone outreach to increase compliance also show significant increase in cancer screening rates vs. control groups. The approach used in this pilot was shown to be efficient at increasing cancer screening rates, likely due the use of a cancer-focused staff utilizing computerized decision-support algorithms and tracking capabilities. This efficiency also allows


for a low per-enrollee cost. Depending of the Figure 8. Colorectal Cancer size of the company, the cost savings resulting Screening Test Utilization from just diagnosing and treating one cancer at an early stage relative to delayed diagnosis may well cover the related program costs. Targeting only known non-compliant populations (established through HRAs, claims analysis, etc.) could further enhance cost-effectiveness. While the results obtained are significant, there are limitations of the pilot that deserve mention. First, program participants represent a self-selected subset of the entire employee population. As a result, these individuals may well have been more receptive to changing their use of cancer screening services. It is unclear how other individuals who did not elect to participate in the program would have responded to a similar intervention. Secondly, the enrolled population had a higher baseline compliance rate with cancer screening relative to national benchmarks. However, even with higher baseline compliance, the observed increase in colorectal cancer screening compliance in particular was significant.

1 Insure FIT, Quest Diagnostics

Conclusion This pilot study has shown that significant increases in individual participation in cancer screening, and in particular for colon cancer, can be attained using personalized and efficient telephonic decision support. Based on these results and data from other studies, employers with less than desired compliance with preventive care services may want to consider adopting a similar technique to increase screening participation rates. Broader use of this approach will help to clarify the value to both employers and eligible individuals.

It should also be noted that while the program stressed colonoscopy as the best and primary option for enrollees who where non-compliant with colorectal cancer screening, many people elected to perform a FIT test instead with the understanding they would be testing annually (Figure 8). A FIT test, also in recommended screening guidelines if done annually, it is a test collected at home and then mailed to a testing laboratory to check for the presence of fecal blood, potentially indicative of cancer. When requested by the participant, the program provided FIT test education, ordering, tracking, follow-up and reporting to both the participant and their physician. This likely accounts for the high compliance rates for this test when compared to previously reported results.

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Bio Bruce Sherman, MD, FCCP, FACOEM, is Director, Health & Productivity Initiatives with the Employers Health Coalition of Ohio, providing claims data analytics and health management strategies to employer members. Dr. Sherman is also consulting Corporate Medical Director, Whirlpool Corporation supporting the development of integrated, value-based health and productivity management strategies. David Nikka is CEO of ScreenCancer, Inc. a company that provides programs to cost-effectively and significantly increase cancer screening rates for employers, insurers and other target populations. David has over 20 years of experience in healthcare, biotechnology, medical devices and human resources and can be reached at 339223-0573 or dnikka@screencancer.com.


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Join The Corporate Health and Wellness Association www.WellnessAssociation.com

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F E A T U R E

Wellness for Women ~ Ovarian Cancer and Your Wellbeing

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By Debs de Vries

ou may not realise it, but ovarian cancer is the leading cause of death (in the U.S.) from cancer of the female reproductive system, according to the National Cancer Institute. In 2010, 21,880 new cases were diagnosed and 13,850 deaths were recorded. Historically, ovarian cancer was called

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the “silent killer” because it was widely believed that the symptoms were hard to diagnose. This is now considered to be poor information because symptoms, although possible to confuse with other conditions, are not difficult to notice. My mother, aunt and cousin have all succumbed to this disease so I write with ‘inside’ experience. I’ve seen this


illness manifest in its early stages and witnessed its course in my mother’s life very closely. Because of my family history, I am now monitored and counselled by a specialist genetics team. I’d like to pass on what I’ve learned, and encourage women everywhere not to be fearful, but to simply be aware of certain facts and respond accordingly. Pro-active healthcare is the best thing you can do for your health. If you understand the RISK FACTORS (anything that increases your chance of developing cancer) and PROTECTIVE FACTORS (anything that decreases your chance of developing cancer) you can make changes where possible. This is likely to improve your general health as well as reduce risk of ovarian cancer. Remember though, that these factors are based on your assumed ‘chance’ of developing the disease and are not therefore guaranteed to prevent it. Further on in this article, I’ll list the most common symptoms of ovarian cancer but first, I’d like you to fully appreciate what you can do now to help yourself or family members.

RISK FACTORS • Smoking • Family History (gene mutation on genes BRCA1 and 2) • Taking HRT after menopause (estrogen only for 10+years) • Using fertility drugs

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• Obesity (although this is not a high risk factor) • Increased levels of CA125 ( a substance in the blood) • Certain health conditions (Lynch Syndrome) • Age – older than 55

PROTECTIVE FACTORS

• • • • • • • •

Regular exercise Animal fats, trans-fat and alcohol Less than 500g per week of red meat Screening i.e. checking before any symptoms occur Oral contraceptives Having a baby Breast feeding Having a hysterectomy

As you can see from this list, there are some risk factors that you can take your own steps to decrease. Equally there are ways for you to increase the ‘protective’ factors. I don’t offer this as a ‘perfect’ guide list but it’s the best information available right now. My own mother had babies; took oral contraceptives; smoked; breast fed and probably consumed more red meat and alcohol than is now recommended, so you can see it’s a grey area. If family history of ovarian cancer is a concern for you, be vocal in getting your healthcare provider’s attention and find out whether

June 2011


it’s advisable for you and other women in your family, to be tested for the ‘mutated’ gene.

Less commons symptoms include:

At the time of writing this article, (May 2011) there is no standard or routine screening test for Ovarian Cancer either in the U.S, or in the U.K. I have been involved in a study (U.K.F.O.C.S.S.) which has monitored women who, like myself, have a family history of ovarian cancer. This study, and similar ones in the U.S. are seeking to understand whether current screening tests do in fact, lower mortality rates from ovarian cancer as so far, there is inadequate evidence to determine that they do. Current screening tests include a blood serum test to check CA125 levels, an ultrasound screening and a physical examination.

• Feeling the need to urinate frequently

Therefore, it is critical that women who have a family history of ovarian cancer ask their doctor if any screenings are offered. I have found it really helpful to be recognised for being at a higher risk (for having the BRCA1/2 gene mutation in my family) and then being able to educate myself about the healthiest options for my life style.

SYMPTOMS OF OVARIAN CANCER The most common symptoms to watch out for are:

• Shortness of breath • Unusual vaginal bleeding (heavy periods, or bleeding after menopause) It’s clear that any of these symptoms could relate to a multitude of other illnesses so it’s important to be aware what is ‘normal’ for you. Symptoms that do not resolve after treatment must be checked out and you need to be prepared to keep asking. In the UK a doctor may only see a case of ovarian cancer once every 5 years, so it’s likely that on presenting what might be digestive disorders, you could face an uphill battle to get further investigation. Women often just ‘feel’ something is wrong but can’t always get the attention they need for a more thorough diagnosis. According to the National Cancer Institute’s SEER – 5 year relative survival rate, a cancer that is ‘localized’ (confined to primary site) has a 92.4% survival rate; as compared to where the cancer has metastasized (i.e. spread to a new site in the body) at 27.2%. You can see it’s better to be a nuisance than ignore your own gut feel.

Bio

• Pressure and/or pain in the abdomen, pelvis, back and legs • A regularly swollen or bloated abdomen • Nausea, indigestion, gas, constipation or diarrhea that doesn’t go away • Feeling full very quickly on eating • Feeling very tired all the time

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Debs de Vries is an internationally recognised writer and also author of a wide range of personal growth, self-help and relaxation audios. Her “Chill meditation” podcasts were the World’s Number One health download in 2009 and her audio books - “Guides to Great Self Confidence” are widely acclaimed.


F E A T U R E By Dr. Joel Fuhrman and Bobby Smith

The Colon Cancer Reality

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ast year alone, over 50,000 people died of Colon Cancer. It is the second leading cause of cancer related deaths of men and women and is most deadly in many African American and underserved communities. This is due, in part, to the lack of comfort about discussing the disease and proper screening efforts. The encouraging truth is that this disease is over 90% curable when detected and treated early. It is essential for all men and women to be screened for colorectal cancer by age 50 and African Americans at age 45. If there is a family history of colon cancer a Gastroenterologist or ColoRectal Surgeon will provide screening guidelines.

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The colon is one of those body parts we don’t pay much attention to unless it’s not working properly or something goes wrong, but it is a vital contributor to overall health. As part of the digestive system, it is primarily responsible for the absorption of water and minerals and the elimination of waste. The colon plays important roles in immune function, acts as a barrier protecting us from toxins and harmful bacteria, and supports the growth of millions of friendly bacteria that further digest some types of food, produce vital nutrients and further contribute to healthy immune function. These are just some of the reasons why is so important to be proactive in protecting this important organ.


Maintaining a healthy weight, staying active, choosing a diet high in fruits, vegetables, fiber and whole grains while avoiding too much red, processed meats and not smoking are key to maintaining colon health and also to preventing colon cancer. In fact, more than half of all colon cancers can be prevented by healthy lifestyle choices alone. Screening for colorectal cancer is also important. Ninety-five percent of colon cancer cases can be cured if detected early, yet screening for colon cancer consistently lags behind screenings for other types of cancers. This is one reason why colon cancer remains a leading cause of cancer deaths in both men and women despite being one of the most preventable and curable forms of cancer. The American Cancer Society recommends that people lower their risk of developing colorectal cancer by managing the risk factors that they can control, such as diet and physical activity. Diets high in vegetables and fruits have been linked with a lower risk of colon cancer, and diets high in processed and/or red meats have been linked with a higher risk. The American Cancer Society recommends: • Eat a healthy diet, with an emphasis on plant sources. • Choose foods and beverages in amounts that help achieve and maintain a healthy weight. • Eat 5 or more servings of a variety of vegetables and fruits each day. • Choose whole grains rather than processed (refined) grains. • Limit consumption of processed and red meats

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Highly respected physician, author, speaker, and a regular contributor to the Foundation Joel Fuhrman M.D. comments below For those desiring more powerful protection, these guidelines are not sufficient and are still somewhat vague. For example, it is well established that 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day is still not ideal for cancer protection. This recommendation was made to improve the diet-style of Americans, whose typical grocery baskets are dramatically lacking in these protective foods, but the recommendation is still sub-optimal. The recommendations as a whole were established in response to the dismally low intake of vegetables being consumed in America, and do not represent an ideal. The most recent scientific advancement in the anticancer research is the identification of specific foods and food elements that offer powerful protection against cancer.

June 2011


of life, because they promote heart disease and dementia too. The goal is to gradually reduce even the non-red meat animal products in your diet until you’re only consuming them two to three times per week, but even at that low level of consumption the choice of animal products should exclude or only rarely consume processed meat and barbequed meat.

Sugar and White Flour and Cancer It has been hypothesized that levels of triglycerides, glucose, and insulin are associated with increased risk of colon cancer and that diets high in simple sugars and white flour increase risk of colon cancer because of their impact on these factors. There are interesting similarities in the epidemiology of colorectal cancer and adult onset diabetes. In a number of studies, diabetic patients have been shown to have an elevated risk of colorectal cancer and non-diabetics with elevated postprandial glucose levels also have a higher risk of colorectal cancer than individuals with normal glucose tolerance.

Meat and Cancer

Accumulating epidemiologic evidence indicates that high consumption of red meat and processed meats increases the risk of colorectal cancer. A meta-analysis assessed the association between red meat and processed meat consumption and the risk of colorectal cancer from 29 studies. It showed a clear dose-response relationship, confirming higher intake corresponds with more One explanation for these associations is that both cancers and a lower intake with less. diseases are linked to becoming overweight and The consumption of red meat and processed the resultant metabolic effects and heightened meats on a regular basis more than doubled the inflammation that results, but it is interesting risk of some cancers. Even ingesting a small to note the evidence supporting the possibility amount of red meat, such as two to three ounces that chronic exposure to diets rich in rapidly a day, was shown to significantly increase assimilated carbohydrates may act directly the risk of cancer. Red meat and processed as a promoter of colorectal carcinogenesis. meats contain more saturated fat and trans fat Considering that both animal products and than other animal products, and, therefore, are processed foods supply us with a rich caloric load, poorer food choices. These foods must not be but not with antioxidants and phytochemicals a regular part of your diet if you are looking to necessary for the normal function of cells and maintain excellent health into your later years the immune system, it may also be the lack of

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these nutritional elements that are important (as low-nutrient carbohydrates make up a higher percentage of total caloric intake). Free radical production increases and chronic disease develops as the level of produce decreases in the diet and the combined consumption of animal products and processed foods increases.

radicals in check, but even more fascinating is the body’s ability (when fueled with a sufficient amount of these greens) to repair broken DNA cross-links and modify the expression of genes that influence the risk of colon cancer.

Vitamin D and Cancer

Epidemiological evidence supports the direct association between simple carbohydrates and risk of colon cancer. A population study reveals a particularly heightened risk when a diet high in refined carbohydrates is associated with a sedentary lifestyle.

Studies in recent years have added more support to the idea that higher levels of vitamin D may decrease risk of colorectal cancer. Further, typical dietary intakes such as 200-400 IU/day may be too low to exert appreciable benefits, and protection may occur with higher levels of vitamin D. Recent studies also suggest a Vegetables and Cancer potential benefit of vitamin D on other digestivetract cancers, and that vitamin D status at the Even though the key dietary strategy for time of diagnosis and treatment may influence preventing cancer of the large bowel is to cancer survival For most Americans not increase your intake of fresh vegetables and living in and working outdoors in southern fruits (especially vegetables) while lowering states, supplementation with 100 to 3000 IU’s the amount of animal products and meat eaten, optimizes serum 25-hydroxy Vitamin D levels the evidence that eating more green vegetables for protection against cancer and osteoporosis. is protective for cancers of the colon and The ideal levels can be confirmed with a blood rectum, lung and prostate -- is building into an test. avalanche. Cruciferous vegetables (the cabbage and broccoli family) are simply the most Eat For Health ~ Effective For All powerful weapon against all forms of cancer and Health Conditions especially colorectal cancer. The foundation of nutritional science can be Cruciferous vegetables have been studied explained by my simple formula: H = N / C or extensively for their chemo protective effects. Health = Nutrients / Calories. In experimental animals, cruciferous vegetables have been shown to inhibit chemically-induced This is a concept I call the nutrient density colon cancer. Human studies show a huge of your diet. The key to both longevity and protective effect; people who were regular healthful weight loss is to eat predominantly consumers of these foods had approximately 60 those foods that have a high proportion of percent less cancer. nutrients (non-caloric food factors) compared to calories (carbohydrates, fats and proteins). Cruciferous vegetables act by altering the Maintaining a favorable body weight is an metabolism of carcinogens present in cooked important component of an anti-cancer lifestyle. food, such as the heterocyclic amines. They help the body eliminate carcinogens and also keep free A food is healthy or not-so-healthy based on

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how much fiber, phytochemicals, antioxidants, minerals, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins and other unnamed (or yet to be discovered) nutrients it contains in proportion to its calories. You can grade food quality, construct menus, and make food choices to support excellent health. Once you know which foods have the highest nutrient density, you will become an expert in nutrition and weight loss. It is that simple.

Bio

Eating large quantities of high-nutrient foods is the secret to optimal health, disease prevention and maintaining a healthy slim waistline. The health equation describes a way of eating that is truly a longevity diet, yet it effortlessly has you achieve an ideal weight and it is an anti-cancer and anti-heart disease diet-style. A typical anti-cancer diet should contain at least 3 fresh fruits daily, at least one large raw green salad, as well as a two other cooked (steamed) vegetables, such as broccoli, carrots and peas, squash or other colorful vegetables. A huge pot of soup ladened with vegetables, herbs and beans can be made once a week and conveniently taken for lunch. Raw nuts and seeds are another important, but often overlooked food with documented health benefits contributing to longevity. Many individuals are choosing to modify their lifestyle to improve their health or reverse diseases. Unrefined plant foods and phytochemical support is the foundation of an anti-aging lifestyle. Most diseases are effectively treated and in many cases completely reversed through aggressive nutritional intervention. Uncovering the cause, and fueling the miraculous natural repair systems that are built into your body is always a better choice that results in a more favorable outcome, rather than covering up symptoms with medications. More information on my cutting edge approach to health and longevity can be found at my website www. drfuhrman.com and in my Eat To Live book.

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Bobby Smith, Executive Vice President, Susan Cohan Colan Cancer Foundation. Susan Cohan Colan Cancer Foundation (Susie’s Cause) is a national grass-roots organization headquartered in Baltimore that has established itself as the National voice for the screening, prevention, and early treatment of Colon Cancer. The Foundation is striving to eliminate Colon Cancer as a life threatening disease through the development and the dissemination of educational programs designed to increase screening. Since the inception of the Foundation colon cancer has experienced the greatest reduction in cancer deaths in the United States. Susie’s Cause was named for Susan Cohan, a courageous young woman who was committed to changing these statistics. It was her vision that by encouraging both prevention and early detection through innovative educational and outreach programs the Foundation would not only help spare others from unnecessary suffering and deaths from colon cancer, but would also be a trusted source of information, hope and support for those facing colon cancer, and for those researching ways to more successfully treat this disease. For the past 6 years Susie’s Cause has established itself as the National Voice for the prevention, screening, early detection and the treatment of colon cancer. For more information about Susie’s Cause, visit our website at www.coloncancerfoundation. org or call 410 244 1778.


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7 Strategies

for Preventing Cancer in Your Corporate Employees

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W O R K S I T E

By Dr. Walter Gaman

By Dr. J. Mark Anderson

W E L L N E S S

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o one wants to hear that an employee has cancer. The news of such a devastating disease brings images of emotional sadness and uncertainty. Once the shock of the diagnosis wears off, the reality of the associated healthcare costs and lost productivity can send a corporation into panic mode. Employees are the human capitol that drives the success of any business and losing a member of the team can cause a significant impact. Many industry leaders have embraced a sense of corporate responsibility when it comes to helping employees stay healthy. Here are a few things that you can do to help prevent cancer before it starts.

Strategy #1: Educate Employees on Cancer Risks Educational programs in the workplace should reach beyond your specific industry. Health and wellness topics should always be incorporated into the mix. By educating employees about cancer risks, proper screenings,

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and the symptoms to look for, you can empower them to be proactive about their health. Never assume that everyone knows the basics – because most people don’t. Just like the old adage “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”, cancer prevention can cost significantly less than cancer treatment. According to the American Cancer Society 1,529,560 are predicted to get cancer in 2011. In 2010, cancer costs were over $263 billion. Most of this cost impacted employers through healthcare costs and loss of productivity within the workplace. Cancer education is the best prevention strategy and the workplace provides a captive audience ready to be educated. Show your employees that you care about their health and wellbeing and it will also improve morale and increase productivity. Educating employees can help save lives and protect the bottom line.

Strategy #2: Encourage and Promote Good Habits Most cancers are preventable or easily treatable if found early. Employees should be encouraged to take a day off for their annual physical exam. One way to encourage this in the workplace is to provide a paid day off that is specifically dedicated to this purpose. Women should also be educated that a physical exam goes beyond the annual pap smear and men should be encouraged to have their prostate checked. Health fairs within the work place are a great start, but should never take the place of an annual exam. These should be geared toward promoting health and educating employees on healthy habits. As an employer you may want to consider a reward system for employees that are proactive by attending health fairs and making sure they have their yearly physical examination.

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Strategy #3: Counteract Stress Most patients report that work is the main source of their stress. Finding creative ways to decrease stress and anxiety in the work place will not only encourage higher productivity, but may reduce healthcare costs. Many diseases, including cancer, have been linked to stress and a person’s inability to relax. Some large corporations have provided employees with a gym and other creative outlets that help elevate mood and control the harmful effects of work related pressure. Unfortunately, most of the workforce consists of those with sedentary jobs. As an employer, you owe it to your employees to help them get moving. If your company is too small to provide a gym, find other ways to encourage exercise. Having a morning or lunch time “boot camp” is a great way to encourage staff to decompress together. Exercise is a great way to decrease the risk of cancer while improving mood and overall health.

Strategy #4: Nix the Nicotine Smoke breaks are a thing of the past. Take a stand against cigarette smoking by creating a smoke-free environment. Nicotine is related to a number of illnesses, including cancer. Employers who provide places for employees to smoke are enabling them to continue with a bad habit that not only can harm them, but also the company. In the US, employers pay an average of $2189 on employee compensation claims for smokers, versus $176 for their non-smoking employees. Furthermore, smokers are ill more often and miss an average of 6 days a year, 3 more than the non-smoker. Having a smoke free environment will also give a corporation an advantage when negotiating health, life, and disability insurance rates.

June 2011


The US Surgeon General concluded that smokefree work environments decrease the amount of tobacco use and also increase the success rate of those who are trying to stop smoking. Current and former smokers make up 90% of all lung cancer cases, so become a corporation that takes a stand and help your employees help themselves.

encourage good nutrition in the workplace and in their cafeterias. Bringing in a health expert to explain how nutrition can play a role in cancer prevention could also be a benefit to your organization.

Strategy #5: Go Green

Good health starts at the top and gains momentum as it spreads through the company. Executive physical examinations are a great way to raise awareness, as well as educate the top talent about their own health. C-Level executives are the gears of a corporation and need to maintain optimum health so that they make good decisions while working efficiently and effectively.

Strategy #7: Lead by Example

Sick Building Syndrome (SBS) is the cause of illness in many employees. Even a new building can cause employees to feel ill due to their choice of cleaning products. Harsh chemicals often contain Volatile Organic Compounds or VOCs, a type of toxin that leads to indoor air pollution and ultimately cancer. Talk to your cleaning company or staff and only allow green Finding cancer and other illnesses early, when commercial cleaning supplies. they are still in the treatable and curable stages, is the purpose of an executive physical exam. These If your company is building or remodeling, be half day physicals are an investment in your top sure that carpet and paint choices have low or talent and one that could save your company from no VOCs. These products have become more a huge upset down the road. Make an investment readily available and are now more competitively in the wellness of your leaders and watch them priced. help lead others to better health. Your company has a great opportunity to make a huge impact in the health of your employees. Small things can make a big difference in the Employees will eat at least one, maybe two, prevention of cancer and other illnesses. Be a meals during the course of their work day. The leader and take proactive steps to protect your employer has a prime opportunity to promote best investment – your employees. healthy eating habits. Snack machines and corporate cafeterias should avoid foods that contain artificial sweeteners and additives. Drs. Walter Gaman and J. Mark Anderson, Foods that are found in nature have the best experts in preventative and proactive medicine, health benefits. are managing partners of Executive Medicine of Texas. They have co-authored the book Stay Good nutrition is the first line of defense against Young: 10 Proven Steps to Ultimate Health cancer. For example, berries, green tea, and and co-host the popular Staying Young Radio whole grains are just a few foods that have Show. You can learn more about them by cancer fighting properties. Companies should visiting www.emtexas.com.

Strategy #6: Promote Healthy Nutrition

Bio

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E D I T O R I A L

By Laurie Jones

Everything I Know About Cancer I Learned From My Best Friend

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ix years ago, my friend, whom I shall call Susan, sat before her home computer, poised to send one of her elegant emails, unaware that the next few minutes would tip her life over and break it. Her husband, Steve, was in the basement working on a project when he heard a loud and uncharacteristic, meaty crash. It sent him up the stairs two at a time to find Susan in full seizure on her office floor.

right front quadrant of Susan’s brain. Cancer is a strange word. It sounds like none of its off-spring, yet they all sound like each other. Glioma, sarcoma, lymphoma, blastoma, and melanoma are just some of their names. The list goes on into the night.

First, Susan had surgery. She hid the halo of shorn scalp from the incision under silk headbands until her hair grew in to cover the evidence. Only we who knew her had any idea she was in the fight of her life. She was not At the hospital, they took countless alone. Her sister-in-law knew many x-rays and scans. Those pictures were of the best oncologists and radiologists not worth a thousand words, they were and neurologists in the region, and worth one word: Cancer. A glioma nearly sat on their doorsteps until was drifting like smoke through the Susan became their patient. Steve

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decided to learn everything he could about her condition. Susan joined Gilda’s Club, a cancer support group. What she heard there and said there was sometimes uplifting, even hilarious, and sometimes very difficult to hear and say, but it was truth by the spoonful, and strong medicine in itself. Susan went on her annual trip with some of her girlfriends exactly as planned, if moved back a bit. I couldn’t join them as I live 1,700 miles away, but she and I talked nearly every day, about cancer, about her husband and her cat and about nothing, which in a lifetime is the real something. It is a luxury to take the time to talk about nothing. Susan’s musings were always elegant, like her silk headbands, slipped on at the last moment. Next, Susan had radiation therapy. Susan’s MRI’s were very clean, but with cancer, you keep polishing even when the spot looks immaculate.

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She was praised constantly by the staff for her utter stillness during the sessions. Hair loss was expected, but Susan’s hair had grown back completely, and it decided to stay. As before, Susan’s body conspired with her to hide her secret. She began to collect jokes and funny thoughts to share at Gilda’s Club. I decided there had to be good words that ended in “-oma.” You could see a rodeo in Oklahoma. Near San Diego, you could drive out to see the lighthouse on Point Loma. How about some jewelry from Picasso’s daughter, Paloma? The more ridiculous, the better. Susan must have been a highlight at Gilda’s, because, simply by being there, she banished some of the fear that walked into the room with all of the attendees. The assortment of people, young and old, well and less-well, changed at each meeting, but the support never changed.

June 2011


was the next minute that touched me. She sat up and started to talk about the lions we saw in their glass enclosure at the MGM Grand Casino, and how they could come near you in all their power but couldn’t reach you. You were free to admire and respect each other at close range without danger. So there was Susan’s magic: she and her cancer were respecting each other at close range. Six years on, Susan is still with us. Susan has changed, not in her serenity but in her condition. The lions approach the glass more often now.

Most recently, Susan had chemotherapy. It is the treatment most cancer patients dread because of the side-effects. Again, Susan dodged the overt signs of her condition. She did have spells of mild distress, but none of the usual grim hours when the world sells out of peace and comfort. The trips to the hospital became a time to write and chat. Other patients near her during the IV drip procedures took strength from her absolute calm. Only once did I feel the full impact of my friend’s struggle, because she kept it from all of us so carefully. We had the great luck to work together as exhibitors at a major conference in Las Vegas. It was just a few months after her surgery, and she still wore the headbands that had become her fashion trademark. We shared a hotel room, had dinners together, and generally became seventeen again, the year in our lives when we met, and when anything is possible. One evening, we had just come back from seeing the fountains dance in front of the Bellaggio. Susan sat on her bed and removed the headband. The motion seemed to take all of her strength, as if she were shedding heavy armor after battle. She wilted against the pillows. For that minute, the cancer won. But it

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Everything I know about cancer I learned from my best friend. You are not a victim of cancer. You are on the opposing team. Serenity does not mean surrender. You are important, you have friends who have important friends, or your friends are important, and they can help you get the expert advice which you alone might miss. Keep those appointments, and take those vacations, and do nothing once in a while. Humor is the best prescription never written. Look for the surprise; look for the strange and ridiculous. Healing is hidden in the funniest places. So is love. Susan’s life did tip over and break, but the glue of family and friends, expert care, medical miracles, and humor can forge a stronger life out of the pieces. A winery tour in Sonoma, anyone?

Bio Laurie Jones is a Wellness Consultant and Regional Vice President with The American Institute for Preventive Medicine, a leading provider of wellness and health promotion products and services. Visit our website at www.Healthylife.com, or you may contact the author at ljones@healthylife.com


Cancer is a Call to

Action

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E D I T O R I A L

By Jackie Savi-Cannon

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ancer is a life threatening illness much like a heart attack is a life threatening occurrence. Yet somehow the perception of the two is very different. Each equally shocking and life changing, yet cancer doesn’t seem to carry the same optimistic quality of life connotations associated with heart attack survivors. I believe this is partially due to the gruesome and aggressive approach taken treating cancer. The reality is we don’t cure cancer in the way we cure other illnesses. We kill it before it kills us and the side effects of the treatments can be as bad as the illness itself.

known. The problem lies in the laundry list of symptoms that go along with receiving this medicine. In many cases you feel more is being destroyed than what survives and is healthy. Let us not forget the dreaded hair loss. The nurturing side of medicine has spawned many treatments and support programs to weather this long and daunting storm. I often felt guilty for those that suffered other life threatening illnesses who didn’t get as much fanfare. All joking aside, cancer recovery does take years. That is a FACT. The depth at which this experience changes a human being cannot be ignored. It goes much deeper than the physical manifestations of the Those of us diagnosed find careful cancer. If one can begin to understand ways to interpret statistics. Although this, the opportunity to thrive presents the study of oncology has grown itself. tremendously, the aggressive nature still remains. In layman’s terms, In an age when we finally understand chemotherapy is a medicine that can be that treating our employees like delivered in various ways. Radiation dispensable/replaceable assets hurts is elusive in the way it enters your the balance sheet at the end of the day, body but it does make its presence it is critical to understand that disease,

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including mental illness, affects at least 1 in 3 people. Simply put, if you haven’t had cancer yourself you probably are close to someone who has. You may even have lost someone you love. I believe one of the reasons I had such a positive experience and outcome was that my cancer was detected early. Time of detection can be a game changer for any individual. More often than not, it dramatically changes your survival chances. Hearing 15-20% chance of reoccurrence with aggressive therapy is very different than hearing 15-20% survival rate with aggressive therapy. The fact of the matter is more and more people are surviving because of strong and ‘effective’ prevention campaigns. Sadly I still see funding and effortsdirected towards programs that are no longer effective. It is important to understand that what worked 5 years ago may not be as relevant today. The face of the cancer patient care is changing. Surviving Cancer is no longer acceptable. Thriving and Quality of Life is and must be the focus. It is about positioning the newly diagnosed individual for the most optimal outcome.

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People are often moved by my story with cancer, however, what I must remind them of is that I didn’t do it alone. More often than not the diagnosis is so overwhelming that patients can’t bring themselves to tell their loved ones. On hearing a cancer diagnosis, the immune system and mental strength is instantly compromised by the burden of carrying such stress alone. In most cases, once a patient enters medical and social/psych type of care, their ability to cope dramatically improves. Connecting newly diagnosed patients to proactive support resources is vital. As the concept of company wellness evolves, specialized programs that deliver support from diagnosis to return-to-work are emerging. The support will evolve into restoring and ‘reorienting’ programs preparing individuals for their new reality and thriving in their own new world. Sadly, today, these types of practical support programs are not widespread with the focus still on getting people past the diagnosis, through treatment and returning home.

June 2011


Many prevention programs are moving in a direction that are targeting a deeper issue; our reactive lifestyles. We are a culture that waits for the train wreck to occur and then sources out the path of least resistance to put the pieces back together. As complimentary therapies are rapidly being integrated into treatment plans, we are also seeing the benefits of incorporating these proven preventative actions into the workplace. Investment is moving into interactive educational and physical programs. Traditional ‘talking head’ lunch and learns need add-ons. Great strides have been made with awareness campaigns - everyone is quite aware of cancer. Our focus now should be to provide convenient outlets to ensure people are aware of the most relevant and innovative resources and programs out there to help them. For example, some programs are beginning to include the following strategies: • allowing windows for restorative activity at work in order to maintain, or decrease stress levels; • utilizing programs that go beyond medicine and facilitate healing the entire individual. We believe that a strong mental state allows for optimum interaction with doctors and caregiversand facilitates healthy interactions generally, including at the workplace;

C’s to consider, Communication, Compassion and Collaboration. Supporting your loved one, coworker or yourself in finishing the story that was so abruptly halted due to a cancer diagnosis requires a collective effort to move beyond something that is so dreadfully feared. An open respectful dialogue allows a person dealing with cancer treatment to enjoy a quality of life that we are all entitled to despite what our circumstances are at any given moment. Let this month of cancer awareness bring about a new look to cancer survival. I am not just referring to improving survival statistics. Let’s raise the bar and work collaboratively through many disciplines and commerce to facilitate richness and fulfillment all people can feel after overcoming something so traumatic. Surviving cancer is no longer acceptable. Thriving with a new and sometimes different quality of life, MUST, be the new standard. Survivors, healthcare providers, employers etc. must all pull together to make this happen. As our digital age proves daily, we can be faster with less effort, let’s apply this and forge ahead with this initiative but instead aim for a life changing outcome!

Bio

• integrating remote work days into the company model. This trend is prevalent in most industries and lends itself extremely well to someone who requires flexibility due to appointments and fluctuating energy levels; and • recognizing and funding organizations that are breaking barriers such as Urban Zen, Canadian Breast Cancer Network, Wellspring. Living with Cancer means exactly that - living not just existing. There are other important Big

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Jackie Savi-Cannon, B. Ed, CYT, is the Director of Programming for JSC Lifestyle Management Inc., a wellness production house; creator of the RNR Program. This Program is an online portal website which gives users instant 24/7 on-demand access to High Definition Video and Audio modules which deal with stress reduction, healthy work & lifestyle practices such as time management, communication and conflict resolution.


Avoiding

Cancer

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F E A T U R E S

T By Dr. Kathy Gruver

here are certain phrases that people dread hearing in their lifetime, “Let’s just be friends”, “We have to talk” and “You have cancer”. The last phrase can instill fear and panic in the hearts of even the strongest people. Since the war on cancer began things have only gotten worse and you may wonder if modern medicine has the weapons needed to fight the war properly. Perhaps the mêlée should be fought on a smaller battlefield, inside each of us. What can we do to protect ourselves from cancer and fight it off if diagnosed with it? Cancer is the uncontrolled replication of cells. This happens all the time in our bodies and the immune system deals with the problem. When cancer takes hold however, we must boost the immune system to help fight. But

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what are some things that lead to cancer? Studies have linked a high fat diet to increased risk of breast and colon cancer. (1) Cutting back on foods that are heavy in saturated fats like red meat and processed foods can help reduce that risk. Increasing foods that are rich in phytochemicals such as fruits and vegetables help keep your immune system strong and eliminate free-radicals. Also, estrogen has been shown to be related to breast and uterine cancer, among others. (2), (3) Estrogen is stored in body fat, so maintaining a healthy weight is valuable. We all know that smoking is bad news leading to both lung and bladder cancers, and that we should avoid this nasty habit. Avoid being in enclosed areas such as cars while someone is


smoking and definitely avoid smoking around the Source, “Exercise stimulates the production children and pets. of endorphins; neurotransmitters that occur naturally in the brain and make us feel good. Though we have seen a large increase in It brings oxygen to our blood and the more the availability and consumption of organic oxygen in the blood, the less hospitable the products, we are still inundated with “Franken- environment to cancer”. (4) foods.” These are foods that have been genetically modified or altered, which are What if we do find ourselves with a cancer also called GMOs or Genetically Modified diagnosis? Though chemotherapy, radiation Organisms. Right now some of our largest and surgery are offered by Western medicine, crops are GMO; corn and soy being the most there are far less invasive natural alternatives prevalent. Monsanto, a multi-national company that can boost your healing. is leading the way in patenting GM seeds and genetically modifying our foods. They are Increase vitamin C. I mean tons of it. Bowel making billions and we are being subjected to, tolerance is a way to tell when the body is done what I believe to be, the biggest human science accepting it. If you spread the doses throughout experiment in history. Regulations are very the day, it’s more easily tolerated and absorbed. lax in this country regarding these practices Too much causes diarrhea, so you don’t want and the food is not only assumed to be safe to get to that point. If it happens, back off the without much testing, but labeling is not a dose. requirement. Beware of foods containing high fructose corn syrup and soybean oil since these It’s believed that cancer cannot live in an not only indicate a highly processed food, but oxygen-rich or alkalized environment. Deep also one that is probably genetically modified. breathing is beneficial as is a hyperbaric chamber if you can find one. A hyperbaric You may be wondering what genetically chamber looks like a tanning bed and delivers modified foods have to do with cancer. Well, oxygen at a pressure higher than atmospheric. unfortunately the jury is still out on that subject. The patient stays in for 30-90 minutes and this Since these foods were not thoroughly tested high pressure oxygen can help cellular health, before release and we don’t know ultimately anti-aging and clearing toxic residue. (5) how these modifications are going to affect Liquid Oxygen is available from health food our own DNA, or combine with each other we stores to drip into water. As far as alkalinity cannot predict what the ramifications will be. I goes, there are supplements available in most advise you to avoid GMOs and let your grocers health food stores, as well as filtration systems and government know you won’t tolerate these that alkalize the drinking water. Also, a diet current food practices. rich in green leafy vegetables and other alkaline foods can contribute to a state of alkalinity. Besides eating organic food and cutting back on saturated fats, what else can we do to stay Studies have shown how important attitude is healthy? How about exercise? Exercise with cancer outcome. A fighting spirit wins. reduces body fat, boosts immune function and This is the biggest competition you will ever gives you a good outlook on life. According to be in and fighting and staying positive will Sara Rosenthal, author of Stopping Cancer at work wonders. Surround yourself with people

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who love you and tell them to remain positive when around you. Prayer is very powerful and people in a group thinking the same healing thoughts can be very beneficial. Eliminating anything processed is recommended. Chemicals and preservatives in food just give your body something else to fight. Whole foods, fruits and vegetables are key. I personally recommend avoiding wheat and dairy as they can be hard on the digestive system. Keeping up nutrition is very important and a good multivitamin, mineral and amino acid formula would be valuable. Some experts recommend a macrobiotic diet, or at the very least going organic and vegetarian. If you can handle the restrictions, these dietary changes can be beneficial, but make sure you get enough protein and amino acids.

no specific link is found between deodorant and cancer, I would avoid this, especially if you have already had a breast cancer diagnosis. (6) Also avoid creams, lotions, cosmetics and sunscreens that contain non-organic products. I HIGHLY recommend testing for both heavy metals and environmental toxin exposure, depending on where you grew up, where you live now and any potential exposure pertinent to your occupation. Both tests are simple; the presence of metal contaminants in the body can be determined by testing a hair sample and environmental toxins can be determined by a simple blood test. You can consult a natural medicine doctor or naturopath to order those tests. If the results come back positive, it would be beneficial to do a cleanse or chelation therapy to flush the chemicals out.

It’s not only important to be selective about There have been numerous doctors persecuted what we are putting IN our bodies, but also and forced out of the United States for their ON our bodies. One of the most commonly work on curing cancer. One is Dr. Hoxsey whose clinic is still functioning in Mexico and the other is a nurse named Rene Caisse. (7) She created a formula called Essiac, which is still available at www.essiac-canada.com. I had a client that used this formula on her husband with melanoma and his recovery was much quicker than expected.

used products is deodorant containing aluminum. We are smearing this daily on some of the most absorbent tissue in the body. Though

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Cancer and health are also affected by personal attitude and mental outlook. As I have mentioned before, I see a large correlation between what we think and what happens in our bodies. I believe one of the reasons we get sick is to let us know something is out of balance with our emotional/spiritual side. Our emotions need to let us know that something must change. When we ignore the emotions we open up the window for sickness. I also believe that malfunctions in our body are the body’s way to communicate that something is

June 2011


wrong in our mind and spirit. I believe that if we don’t acknowledge our emotional needs and issues, this energy has to go somewhere and manifests as illness or dis-ease. A child will only scream mommy, mommy, mommy, mommy for so long before he starts pulling things off shelves. This is also what our emotions do. The carpal tunnel, sciatica, neck pain, headaches, psoriasis and cancer is our emotional child pulling things off shelves because it has been ignored. I’m not saying that illness is 100% emotionally formed. There are toxins, poisons and hereditary components to consider. But if our emotions are even responsible for 10% of our illnesses and we can control them, why wouldn’t we?

Visualization for Healing Cancer

Get into a relaxed place, in a comfortable position. Breathe deeply and try to quiet the mind. Get a picture in your head of what you think the cancer looks like. It can be a ball, a blob, whatever it is to you. Picture it in the area of the body where it is growing. As you inhale, send the breath to that organ and tumor and picture it shooting at it, eating it, dissolving it, whatever scene works for you. I always saw it as the cavalry coming over the hill in the old movies to save the day. That cavalry are your white blood cells and they are surrounding the tumor to get rid of it. Hold the picture of the tumor disappearing for as long as you can. Do this visualization as many times during the day If you have already started chemotherapy or as possible. I have seen amazing results with radiation treatments, greet it as a positive thing. this type of meditation. As it’s going into your body, picture it fighting the cancer and see the tumors shrinking. If you fight against the chemo and dread it, or see it as a poisonous enemy, it will not work as well for you. Dr. Kathy Gruver, PhD is a health And last but not least, I encourage you to practitioner, author, speaker and communicate with your health providers. Ask educator. Her first book, The Alternative questions, do your own research and get a Medicine Cabinet is available at her second, third and fourth opinion if necessary. website along with free health tips, a And, if it is in your nature, seek out more monthly newsletter and resources. www. natural cures such those we have covered thealternativemedicinecabinet.com above. We need to be our own advocate. Good luck and good health.

Bio

Resources 1. A diet high in fat significantly increases a woman’s risk of developing invasive breast cancer, according to a study conducted by researchers at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland, and published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. 2. http://www.breastcancer.org/treatment/hormonal/what_is_it/hormone_role.jsp 3. http://www.cumc.columbia.edu/news/in-vivo/Vol2_Iss10_may26_03/index.html 4. Rosenthal, M.S. (2001). Stopping Cancer at the Source. Canada: Trafford Publishing. Pg. 72-73. 5. http://www.hyperbaricchambertreatment.com/ 6. http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/AP-Deo 7. http://essiacinfo.org

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W O R K S I T E

Early Detection is Key ~ Breast Cancer Awareness By Melissa Mayfield

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reast cancer is the 5th leading cause of death among women over the age of 40. However, if diagnosed with breast cancer in its earliest stages, it actually has a very high survival rate. This is why it is so important to inform the public on issues such as early detection, symptoms, risk factors and healthy habits to help ward off breast cancer.

Early Detection

below do not necessarily indicate breast cancer, but they can be a warning sign Women of all ages are advised to and should probably be checked out by a administer self breast exams on a doctor just in case: monthly basis. Starting this at a young age familiarizes you with your own • A new lump or bump in the breast or underarm normal breast tissue; this will make you more capable of noticing an irregularity • Any discharge from the nipple such as a lump if it should ever occur. Risk of breast cancer increases with • Irritation or dimpling of the breast skin age, which is why women should begin getting mammograms once they turn • Change in breast size or shape 40, on an annual or bi-annual basis. If • Inversion or pulling of the nipple you have an immediate relative who was diagnosed with breast cancer you should • Flaky skin or (abnormal) redness in the nipple and/or breast talk to your doctor about when you should start receiving mammograms, • Pain in any area of the breast as they may want you to begin earlier. When breast cancer firsts strikes it may Risk Factors not have any signs or symptoms, which would make it impossible to pick up on Breast cancer occurs when breast cells a self exam. However, mammograms begin growing abnormally and then (X-rays of the breast) can pick up on these cells form a tumor. However, breast cancer in its earliest stage; this doctors have not discovered exactly makes them a doctor’s best chance to what causes the cells to mutate in some diagnose breast cancer early. people and not in others. Therefore, it

W E L L N E S S

is possible for anyone to develop breast cancer, but there are some factors that can increase your risk.

Symptoms

There are some common symptoms that many women experience when Being Female – Breast cancer is far they have breast cancer. The symptoms more prevalent in women than men. For

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every 100 women diagnosed, there is less than 1 man diagnosed

Hormone Therapy – Women who take hormone medications that contain estrogen and progesterone to help regulate symptoms of menopause have an increased risk

Personal Breast Cancer History – If you have already had cancer in 1 breast, you have an increased risk of developing it in the other breast Radiation – Repeated exposure to radiation, such as receiving a large number of chest X-rays also Family History – 5% - 10% of breast cancer cases increases breast cancer risk are linked to a genetic mutation that is passed down amongst family members, which raises one’s risk Healthy Habits Hormonal Changes – If you begin your period before age 12, have your first baby after age 35, or begin menopause after age 55, there is an increased risk

There are some risk factors that we can’t control such as being female or having a family history of breast cancer; however there are positive steps that we can take in our daily lives to help reduce the risk. Maintaining a healthy weight is an important factor Obesity – Being severely overweight increases your in reducing your risk of developing breast cancer. breast cancer risk Staying fit can be done through diet and exercise, both of which offer additional cancer fighting Alcohol – Excessive drinking may increase your risk benefits. Exercising for at least 30 minutes a day for

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5 for days a week has been shown to cut down cancer risk. Foods that are high in antioxidants and antiinflammatory properties such as tomatoes, broccoli, and cauliflower are thought to have powerful cancer fighting abilities. Fatty fish such as salmon has also been shown to help ward off breast cancer because they are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have strong anti-inflammatory properties. Limited research has shown that cancer cells actually die in test tubes when exposed to garlic, so go ahead and pile it on! As for our cancer prevention beverage of choice, reach for some green tea. Green tea contains EGCG, which is an extremely powerful antioxidant. Limit your alcohol consumption, as an excess of one drink per day can increase your risk. Finally, if you are experiencing menopause, try to limit your use of hormone therapy. If your post-menopausal symptoms are unbearable use the lowest dose of hormone therapy possible for the shortest amount of time.

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Remember, early detection is a person’s best chance of surviving a breast cancer diagnosis, so be sure to schedule yourself a mammogram if you are over 40 and have not had one within two years! Employers who have an incentivized wellness program should consider including yearly mammograms for woman over age 40 part of the requirements for gaining incentives to help drive early detection.

About eni: eni provides customized wellness programs, designed with evidence based research and the medical expertise of the Harvard School of Public Health. eni’s ultimate goal is to create dynamic solutions that actively engage, educate, and empower a happy, healthy, more productive workforce. Learn more at www.eniweb.com or call us at 1.800.364.4748

June 2011


Give your employees something to smile about. They will thank you.

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Cancer ~

A Cellular Perspective

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F E A T U R E S

By Dr. David Koivuranta

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our body is made of trillions of cells. Cells make up every single organ, gland and tissue in the body. All these cells amazingly came from one cell created at conception. That single cell was formed by the union of half of your mother’s DNA and half of your father’s DNA. How that egg and sperm came together to join those two halves of DNA and create a brand new you is a whole other discussion, but I’m sure you get the idea! Your parents probably have a good story regarding that particular event.

multiplying until all the parts in your body were made and were functioning perfectly together. The first system that was fully functional was your circulatory system, the heart and the blood vessels. This was so that all those growing and dividing cells could get the nutrients they needed to survive and continue forming the end product for birth.

The first system that started to take shape, however, was the nervous system. The nervous system is what coordinated those cells to take on the proper structure and function based on At conception, that single cell was your genetic blueprint. Even though programmed to start dividing and it was the first one to take shape, it is designing you. It contained the the last one to become fully functional blueprint and the energy to start some time after birth. This is one of

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the reasons babies don’t get up and walk right away and why their reflexes are different; it takes upwards of a year for all those nerves to become fully functional through a process called myelination. That amazing energy that was present inside that single microscopic cell at conception is still alive and well inside you today fuelling your very existence. This inborn intelligence (that science calls Innate) allows you to live to your body’s genetic potential on a daily basis. All we have to do is eat well, exercise, sleep and control our exposure as well as our response to physical, chemical and emotional stress and we’ll live a healthy life each and every day for as long as possible. This is primarily accomplished through a perfectly functioning, irritation free nervous system. what our bodies are able to filter and levels can build up in the body causing cellular damage. The nervous system’s job is to support our Because cells are always dividing and old cells body’s ability to interact with the environment, are being replace with new ones, this can affect both internally and externally. If it’s sunny, we the health and quality of that cell regeneration. squint. If we eat something, we digest it and A good environment leads to good cell absorb it. If we get overloaded with work, regeneration; a bad environment (physically, we can feel stressed. If we get recognised for chemically and emotionally) can lead to bad cell a job well done, we celebrate and feel good regeneration. This is thought to be a probable about ourselves. This interaction with the contributor to certain kinds of cancers as well as environment occurs on a positive and a negative many other health conditions. level. Our body is designed and programmed to deal with both scenarios and a healthy amount Therefore, throughout our lives, whether it is of exposure to stress, both good and bad, will in the workplace or at home, our bodies can be lead to a strong, coordinated and productive exposed to conditions that challenge the cells in body. a way that does not allow for them to ideally take care of themselves. This can lead to abnormal Too much of either stress, however, will create function in the cells that does not allow them an imbalance in the body and start to cause wear to divide and regenerate like normal. This and tear on the parts that need to deal with that is, unfortunately, only one source of how and stress. This occurs right down to the cellular where the cell division can go wrong. level. If, for example, we are exposed to chemicals at work like solvents or copier toners Science continues to uncover more and more or asbestos, the level of irritation may exceed incredible features of how our cells function

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and interact. Much of this research is in hopes of discovering how cancers occur in the body and how to treat them when they do. Scientists now know that through our genetics we can be predisposed to certain cancers. By mapping our human DNA and being able to read that blueprint that creates us, we can also read that DNA to see if parts of it are similar to the DNA of those people who have health problems like certain cancers. Sure enough, complex health problems like certain cancers as well as heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and many others have been shown to have a genetic component. Not only do environmental factors play a role in irritating our cells and causing them to multiply incorrectly, but our cells themselves may have changes to the ideal blueprint that controls them and makes them more likely to become dysfunctional. Tests are now available to help determine if someone is predisposed to certain health problems like some forms of cancer in order to help with early detection and early intervention as well as lifestyle planning. Just because someone is predisposed, it does not mean they will develop the condition. Environmental factors still play a very large role in this respect. So what is the relevance to the workplace and the workforce? People will spend roughly a third of their day during their adult life carrying out their chosen occupation. This is a significant portion of our lives that will determine how healthy we are. And that portion will either be a positive addition to our health and our life or it will be a negative one. Given the choice, most of us would choose to make it a positive one. As much as we’d like to rely on others to ensure that happens, in the end, as with all aspects of our health, it is up to each and every one of us

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to raise our level of awareness for creating a healthy and productive work experience. When it comes to cancer, we can start to become aware of certain amounts of exposure while at work. Think of what you might be coming into contact with physically, chemically and emotionally. Find ways to make that interaction one that does not overwhelm your body, and ideally, make it one that actually supports the body. Take the time to sit down with your coworkers, managers, supervisors and other parties to discuss the potential improvements to the work environment. When you put things into a cellular perspective to support ideal health, work production, efficiency and proficiency will always improve as well. Nature will nurture the ideal outcomes for everyone involved.

Bio Dr. David Koivuranta is the founder of Time Health Management. Time Health Management is a corporate health and wellness company. It is founded on over a decade’s worth of experience and knowledge derived from treating employees suffering from ergonomic stress, strain and disease. It’s time to manage your corporate health, visit www. timehealthmanagement.com and receive a free business evaluation. Learn why our workplace wellness solutions make sense. For more information email drdave@ timehealthmanagement.com or call 416697-7918. Ask us about our 5 minute onsite ergonomic and stress reducing system that should be found in every successful business. Visit http://dnatestingcanada.com/ to learn more about DNA testing.


Employer Sponsored Cancer Screening

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C O L U M N

By Jonathan Spero

W

ith healthcare reform mandating coverage for many preventative services employers are taking a closer look at worksite health screenings. Health screenings not only assist in accessing the health risk of population or individual employee, but also pick up undiagnosed diseases that can be very costly if untreated.

Before employers implement cancer screening programs at the workplace, they need to understand what the research shows and be guided by evidence based medicine. Evidence based medicine aims to apply the best available evidence gained from scientific method to clinical decisionmaking. And when it comes to cancer screening, evidence medicine is even more important as the stakes are high Employer sponsored metabolic and there exists much emotional bias. screenings are growing in popularity and identify undiagnosed conditions So what is the evidence for or against such as high blood pressure, elevated cancer screenings? And what are the cholesterol, and diabetes. So what nationally recognized guidelines? about cancer screenings? Cancer screening exams and tests can pick up Over 11 million people in the United life threatening cancers early in the States have some form of cancer and disease increasing the likelihood of a there are more than 200 different cure. types of cancer. The following are the

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10 most commonly diagnosed cancer types in 2009 and the estimated number of new cancer patients diagnosed each year:

• Clinical breast exam (CBE) about every 3 years for women in their 20s and 30s and every year for women 40 and over

1. Non-melanoma skin cancer - 1 million plus Colorectal Cancer (rarely deadly) Colorectal cancer screening, in general, begins 2. Lung cancer – 220,000 at age 50. Patients have a number of options as 3. Breast Cancer – 200,000 follows: 4. Prostate Cancer – 195,000 5. Colorectal Cancer – 150,000 • Colonoscopy (every 10 years) OR • Flexible sigmoidoscopy (every 5 years) OR 6. Bladder Cancer - 70,000 • CT scan (every 5 years) 7. Melanoma - 69,000 8. Non-Hodgkin lymphoma - 66,000 PLUS yearly sampling of stool. 9. Kidney cancer - 50,000 10. Leukemia – 45,000 Cervical Cancer Despite cancer’s enormous prevalence in our population, there exists only a handful of cancer screening tests and exams that have been proven to decrease the mortality related to a specific cancer. These screening tests must be done on a regular interval basis to be effective and include screenings for breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and cervical cancer.

• Regular female exam and pap smear as recommended by your physician

Breast Cancer

Is there any test for ovarian cancer?

Prostate Cancer

The FDA has approved the use of the PSA test along with a digital rectal exam (DRE) to help detect prostate cancer in men 50 years of age or older; together, these tests can help doctors Cancer Screenings Recommendations detect prostate cancer in men who have no symptoms of the disease. In fact, most doctors Below are the current nationally recognized do recommend these tests for their male patients. cancer screening recommendations. The timing However, as previously stated, the research has and frequency of the testing can be modified not yet proven that it will decrease the death based on family history and genetic testing. rate related to this disease in a population.

• Yearly mammograms are recommended Some employers have started ordering the cancer starting at age 40 and continuing for as long a antigen 125 (CA 125) blood test for their health woman is in good health screenings. This test is NOT recommended for

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Summary Over the next decade several major advances in cancer screening hold enormous promise. However, at this time, effective cancer screening is limited to only a few cancers. Incorporating non-evidence based cancer screening tests into an employer sponsored health screening can actually do more harm than good. False positives can lead to unnecessary follow up procedures, costs, and employee concerns. Employers who are considering health screenings should keep this in mind and stick to nationally recognized cancer-screening guidelines.

Bio women with an average risk of ovarian cancer. Why? While women with ovarian cancer often have an elevated level of CA 125, an elevated CA 125 level doesn’t always mean you have ovarian cancer. Some women with ovarian cancer never have an elevated CA 125 level. And there exist many other conditions (other than ovarian cancer) that can cause an elevated CA 125 level. For these reasons, doctors don’t recommend CA 125 testing in women with an average risk of ovarian cancer. Women with a high risk of ovarian cancer, such as those with mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, which increase the risk of breast and ovarian cancers, may consider periodic CA 125 testing. But even in these high-risk situations, there’s some disagreement about the usefulness of the CA 125 test.

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Jonathan Spero, MD, is CEO of InHouse Physicians and board certified in Internal Medicine. Dr. Spero is an expert in the field of targeted employee wellness programs with measureable ROIs. InHouse Physicians is a global employee health and wellness provider delivering innovative cost containment solutions to corporations around the world. InHouse Physicians high touch employee health services include a wide range of offerings such as cost effective worksite health centers, evidence based “pre-disease” wellness initiatives, health screenings plus analytics, flu vaccinations, and travel medicine. To learn more about InHouse Physicians visit their website at www. inhousephysicians.com or Dr. Spero can be reached at jspero@ihphysicians.com.


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Corporate Wellness Magazine june 2011  

Corporate Wellness Magazine june 2011: Cancer Awareness Month

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