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H E A lT H A n d W E l l n E S S

let spring lift your spirits

A p r i l / M Ay 2 0 1 0 w w w . e n h a n c e 4 l i f e . co m


best choice.

H e a r t l a n d s u r g i ca l s p e c i a lt y H o s p i ta l When you or a member of your family need hospital care, you want the very best experience possible. This means top professional care and the service you deserve. At Heartland, we provide superior healthcare. Plus, our doctors, nurses and staff work very hard to earn the approval and loyalty of everyone we serve. We support the work of outstanding doctors in many different fields including: spine and orthopedic surgery; neurosurgery; general surgery; weight-loss surgery; plastic surgery; hand surgery; vascular surgery; urologic surgery; ear, nose and throat surgery; radiology; pain management; gastroenterology; and primary care medicine. We’ve been proudly known as Heartland Spine and Specialty Hospital for the last seven years. Today, Heartland remains a leader in orthopedic surgery and in multi-specialty care. Heartland Surgical Specialty Hospital 10720 Nall Avenue, Overland Park, Kansas 66211 913-754-5000 or 1-800-975-4774

Whether you’re picking out names or helping them pick out colleges, choose the

Lee’s summit Physicians GrouP for your children’s prenatal and pediatric health care. New parents have lots of questions, and the doctors at the Lee’s Summit Physicians Group are available and accessible seven days a week to help.

Lee’s summit Physicians GrouP 1425 NW Blue Parkway • Lee’s Summit, MO

Pediatrics • 816-524-5600 •

Walk-in urgent care available 7 days a week.

• Open 7 days a week, with evening and weekend urgent care • Open Monday-Thurs., 8 a.m.-7p.m. and Fridays, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (closed noon to 1 p.m.) • Weekend urgent care for pediatrics: Saturday 9-11 a.m. and Sunday 1-4 p.m.

No appointment necessary!

Internal medIcIne • 816-554-1918 •

Free PrenataL consuLts Monday – Friday 10-12 a.m. and 1-4 p.m. Call 816-524-3223, ext. 150

• Open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-noon and 1-4:45 p.m.

raintree Pediatrics 821 SW Lemans Lane • Lee’s Summit, MO

816-525-4700 • Urgent care available Monday-Friday, 8-11 a.m. Scheduled appointments: Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-noon and 1-4 p.m.

We offer after hours on-call physicians, online scheduling, in-house x-rays, labs, EKG and bone scans and we accept most insurance plans.

Call for an appointment or stop by to see us.

from the editor

let spring lift your spirit d. ElTon TruEblood SAid, “A MAn HAS MAdE AT lEAST A STArT on diScovEring THE MEAning of HuMAn lifE WHEn HE plAnTS SHAdE TrEES undEr WHicH HE knoWS full WEll HE Will nEvEr SiT.”

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“And this, our life, exempt from public haunt, finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, sermons in stones, and good in everything.” – William Shakespeare


As spring arrives, it is a perfect time to think about planting a new tree to create a special place for a future generation. I always felt spring arrived with Easter Sunday. My favorite time of year, I love watching the grass turn green, the trees bud and the perennials emerge from the ground. During this seasonal change, I always looked forward to the journey of finding an Easter dress. While any girl loves getting a new dress, it was the time I spent with my mom on this annual tradition that I treasure the most. Maybe there is a special little person you’d like to spend some time with this spring to share and create your own tradition. To share, as poet Augusta Webster describes, is to enjoy with others. Spring is the perfect time to reconnect with those pleasing to your soul. On page 57 we talk about the health benefits of relationships, the healing nature of hugs and offer ways to buffer stress. Summer camps provide an opportunity for our youth to enjoy a sense of belonging, challenge their minds and bodies, and engage their senses. You might recall going to camp for the first time – being excited and nervous to go, and returning home already anticipating the next year’s experience. Take a read on page 24 for information on a host of local camps available for a multitude of interests.

How fortunate we are to live in the Midwest where we can experience the change of seasons and enjoy the outdoors. We have the benefit of forests and trees for shade, lakes to swim in and terrain to hike. The Midwest is also a place rooted with family traditions, where Easter egg hunts and camp memories are not long forgotten. As these treasured memories are held close to your heart, remember also Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, as a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation’s service. As the long weekend arrives, let us come together to honor those who gave their all in service to their country. Let their ultimate sacrifice be a reminder to us the opportunity to live our lives to the fullest. on Twitter: EnhanceMagazine

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in this issue voluME 2, iSSuE 4 april/may 2010 executive editor letha A. Steffey creative director dennis Esser art director and copy editor colleen cooke contributing photographers denise Williams cover photo leslie banks web architect William Thompson contributing writers paige deruyscher, dr. Jeanne drisko, dr. Jason Eberhart-phillips, dr. daniel farrell, dr. kathy farrell, Jeffrey flanagan, kerry Hinrichs, John Holmes, ddS, Michael A. levine, kristin Morris, Sherry osburn, cathy pendleton, dr. Hugh ryan, dr. Tim Steele, phil Toevs


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publishers Mark Williams, letha Steffey


Enhance Magazine is published by Enhance publications. Any information contained within this publication should not be considered a substitute for consultation with a licensed physician. Enhance publications, its affiliates, employees, contributors, writers, designers, and its Editorial board of Advisors (“publisher”) accept no responsibility for inaccuracies, errors or omissions with information for the claims made by Advertisers. publisher expressly assumes no liability for any damages whatsoever that may be suffered by any patient, purchaser or user for any products or services advertised or mentioned editorially herein. you expressly agree that your use of the information in Enhance is at your sole risk. photographs of any model in Enhance in no way suggest or imply that the subject has undergone any procedure or used the products showcased. Every effort is made to ensure accuracy in the information provided. Enhance publications assumes no responsibility or liability for errors, changes, or omissions. photography and material in the publication as well as design may not be copied or reproduced in any form without the written permission of: Enhance Magazine, 7111 W. 151st St., overland park, kS 66223. phone: 913-269-9227, fax: 913-322-1099 All rights reserved. ©2009 Enhance publications.



health focus

a different approach


hEaring loss learn how to protect this invaluable sense.



VitaMin C infusions A cancer therapy shows success for many patients.

turning off thE tiCs The quiet truth about diet and tic disorders.


Port: aftEr DinnEr DElight End your evening with a classic libation.


sPring DishEs Take advantage of local farm fresh food this season.


thE sCiEnCE of CyCling Technology advances have changed a popular activity.


your brain’s balanCE What you need to know about gAbA, the brain’s peacemaker.


hEaling PowEr of lEMons don’t underestimate this common household item.


guM DisEasE A healthy mouth is the start of a healthy body.


allErgiC rEaCtions learn how to control them.


PrEVEnt ostEoPorosis Teenagers need to start now to ward off this disease.

local interest


hoPE anD hEaling kansas city’s Turning point.


suMMEr CaMPs Making memories.


forMs of intiMaCy royals broadcaster shares his struggle with depression.

froM Top: © iSTockpHoToS.coM / roSEMAriE gEArHArT, furAbolo, gAbriEl cArlSon, JuAn Monino

advertising To advertise, please call Mark Williams, mwilliams@ 913-269-9227


Nearly 700 doctors. Working jointly to help you. hawnee Mission Medical Center (SMMC) provides superior orthopedic care to hundreds of area residents. Thanks to our team approach – which may include an orthopedic surgeon, specially-trained orthopedic nurses, and physical and occupational therapists – you receive the best possible care. And SMMC was one of the area’s first hospitals to introduce a minimally-invasive approach to orthopedic surgery, allowing patients to recover and o r t h o p E d i C s Physicians pictured: (L to R) Top row: Burrel Gaddy, MD; Scott Cook, MD; Bottom Row: Jacob Stueve, MD; Mark Rasmussen, MD.

rehabilitate faster and with significantly less pain. Remember, at

SMMC, you receive our undivided attention, our sincere compassion and our focus on whole body care to get you well, and keep you well.

Health questions? Need a doctor? Call ASK-A-NURSE at 913-676-7777 or visit

health bits

the wonderful world of garlic National Garlic Day promotes the many uses of garlic, and there are tons of them. It’s both a vegetable and a herb. It is used in recipes around the world and has been used medicinally for thousands of years. Plus, garlic is believed to ward off evil spirits. About the only bad thing you can say about it is that it can negatively affect an otherwise romantic evening. Celebrate National Garlic Day by using it in your meals and snacks today. Spend some time researching its medical benefits. You might find you are adding more garlic to your menu every day. as a medicinal herb n

n n n n n

phytochemicals in garlic are believed to provide protection against heart disease and cancer, specifically, stomach and colorectal cancers Helps to fight off colds and flu lowers blood cholesterol levels reduces the buildup of plaque in arteries used as a treatment for acne and warts used for toothaches

facts about garlic n n

n n n n n n

garlic is most effective when crushed or chopped and when raw. one clove a day will improve your health, and two to three cloves will help prevent a cold. When cooking garlic wait until the last 10 minutes of cooking to add the garlic. be careful about taking too much as it can irritate your digestive system. don’t microwave garlic as this kills the active ingredients. don’t take garlic instead of a healthy balanced diet. garlic supplements may interact with certain drugs such as anticoagulants. did you know? The fear of garlic is called alliumphobia.

honoring our heroes V-e Day: may 8

Victory in Europe Day commemorates the end of fighting in Europe during World War II. After years of war, Nazi Germany was defeated. The German Army ceased fighting on May 2, 1945, and formally surrendered unconditionally May 7. The surrender of all German forces was arranged for May 8 at 11:01. The Allied countries planned to celebrate victory and the cessation of hostilities. did you know? The original planned date for the celebration of V-E Day, was May 9, 1945. But journalists caught wind of the plans, so the U.S. and Britain moved the date up by a day. Russia kept to the original planned date for May 9 and continues to celebrate on this day.

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armeD forces Day: thirD saturDay iN may (this year, may 15)


This is a day to salute all the men and women in all branches of the service who protect our country. They can be called upon at a moment’s notice to perform a risky and perilous mission for freedom and country. The first Armed Forces Day was held May 20, 1950.

froM lEfT: © iSTockpHoTo.coM / vAlEriE vElikov, cATHErinE lAnE

NatioNal Garlic Day: april 19

repetitive action repetitive pain? KC PAIN CeNters CAN helP. Repetitive motion injuries make up over 50% of all athletic-related injuries seen by doctors. Simple everyday actions, such as throwing a ball, scrubbing a floor, or jogging, can lead to this condition. The most common types of repetitive motion injuries are tendonitis and bursitis. Tendonitis is often found in shoulders, biceps and elbows (an example is tennis elbow). Bursitis is commonly seen in the elbow, knee and hip. Exercise and stretching are are important components to keep connective tissue healthy. Ice and heat therapy can be used to relieve pain and swelling but may not provide lasting relief. For longer lasting relief, schedule a consultation with a Pain Management Specialist at one of KC Pain Center’s locations.

Š / pali Rao

a service of pain ManageMent associates

To arrange a consultation: 816-763-1559 Outside the metro area: 1-800-200-PAIN

health bits

the health benefits of volunteering

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Over the past two decades we have also seen a growing body of research that indicates volunteering provides individual health benefits in addition to social benefits. This research, which is presented by the Corporation for National & Community Service in a report titled “The Health Benefits of Volunteering: A Review of Recent Research,” has


established a strong relationship between volunteering and health: n Those who volunteer have lower mortality rates n Volunteers show greater functional ability n They have lower rates of depression later in life than those who do not volunteer. Comparisons of the health benefits of volunteering for different age groups have also shown that older volunteers are the most likely to receive greater benefits from volunteering, whether because they are more likely to face higher incidence of illness or because volunteering provides them with physical and social activity and a sense of purpose at a time when their social roles are changing. Some of these findings also indicate that volunteers who devote a “considerable” amount of time to volunteer activities (about 100 hours per year) are most likely to exhibit positive health outcomes.

volunteer recognition day: april 20 volunteer recognition day honors the legions of volunteers who dedicate themselves to causes and helping others. They are making big and small differences in the lives of millions of people all over the world. Most volunteers do not ask for recognition. They just want to help and to “give back” where they can. So many groups and causes need volunteer efforts, and the needs are so broad and urgent that everyone can find someplace to volunteer and make a difference.

celebrate this “volunteer recognition day n n n

Say thank you to volunteers for their work get involved in a volunteer activity that supports your passion donate to a volunteer group

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / rEné MAnSi

Perhaps the first and biggest benefit people get from volunteering is the satisfaction of incorporating service into their lives and making a difference in their community and country. The intangible benefits alone – such as pride, satisfaction and accomplishment – are worthwhile reasons to serve. In addition, when we share our time and talents, we: n Solve problems n Strengthen communities n Improve lives n Connect to others n Transform our own lives

D r . J a n e M u r r a y, Owner, Sastun Health & Wellness

Healthy Perspective Pursuing a unique vision for more than a decade. We understand the special needs of start-ups. So when Dr. Murray came to Country Club Bank in 1998, we focused on facilitating a small business loan for her health clinic. From the Perspectives on Science major she designed at uCLa to her current writings on Health Care Reform from an Individual Perspective, Dr. Murray has always approached life with a unique vision. We’re happy to help her see it through. Taking a look at a new business? Call or stop by for a healthy perspective.

816 931 4060 w w w. c o u n t r y c l u b b a n k . c o m

Member FDIC

Where roots run deep, relationships grow strong.

health bits

take time to thank a nurse iNterNatioNal Nurses Day: may 6 International Nurses Day recognizes nurses for their contributions and commitment to quality health care. This day brings awareness to the importance of nurses in the care, comfort and wellbeing of all of us, especially our children and the aging and those in poor health. International Nurse Day is celebrated on May 12 because it is the birthday of Florence Nightengale. Nightengale (1820-1910) is mostly known for her radical innovations in nursing care. She was a pioneer in nursing and a reformer of hospital sanitation methods. In addition to being a nurse, reformer and humanitarian, Nightengale was a statistician. She would use new techniques of statistical analysis and apply them to her life’s work. Her biographer, Sir Edward Tirook, called her the “Passionate Statistician.”

national healthcare decision day: april 16 Healthcare providers and elder law attorneys are urging people to join Americans across the country to talk to them about their future healthcare decisions and to complete their advance directive on national Healthcare decision day on April 16. Technically, the law states that in order for a family member to admit an incapacitated loved one they must either have a valid Health care power of Attorney or guardianship. The Health care power of Attorney allows a patient to grant someone the power to choose healthcare treatments for that person if he or she is deemed incapacitated. This frequently includes an Advance directive, or living Will, which spells out what type of healthcare that patient wants if they are terminally ill or in an irreversible vegetative state. They can be extremely helpful documents to ensure their wishes for end-of-life care will be honored. for more:

ready for a fiesta

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On May 5, 1862, the Mexican army defeated the French army at the Battle of Puebla. This single military battle signified defeat of a European colonial power and a victory for the Mexican people. This single battle is the root of Cinco de Mayo.


Note: Cinco de Mayo is not the celebration of Mexican Independence, which is celebrated on Sept. 16. Cinco de Mayo has come to be much more than one battle in the colonial history of Mexico. It has come to signify Hispanic and Mexican pride and a time to celebrate the rich culture. Cinco de Mayo is a time of song and dance, celebrated by Mexicans and the Hispanic community in the U.S., and in general a time to be proud to be of Hispanic descent.

froM Top: © iSTockpHoTo.coM / AMy dunn, dny59

ciNco De mayo: may 5


THE PREMIER WAY TO TREAT SKIN CANCER MOHS MICROGRAPHIC SURGERY IS A SPECIALIZED WAY OF REMOVING SKIN CANCER. This technique has two main advantages over other treatment options for non-melanoma skin cancer. It allows the surgeon to remove only the smallest amount of tissue necessary, which is especially important in areas where there’s not much tissue to spare, such as around the eye, nose, ear or lips. Plus, this technique yields the highest cure rates (around 96-99%) of all the treatment options for skin cancer.

Premier Dermatologic Surgery ... for the life of your skin


Dr. Spenceri offers office-based Mohs surgery, a safe, efficient, and cost-effective alternative to hospital-based surgery, allowing your treatment to be scheduled sooner and with greater flexibility.

Ask your doctor if Mohs surgery is right for you.

(913) 327-1117

ELIZABETH A. SPENCERI, M.D. Dr. Spenceri is a fellowship trained Mohs Surgeon and board certified Dermatologist. She is a fellow of the ASDS, ACMS and AAD. Her primary focus is skin cancer surgery.

Why should you choose a midwife? • Focuses on the natural process of pregnancy, labor and birth • Combines traditional skills and modern techniques • Respects individuality and beliefs • Emphasizes preventative care • Low rates of cesarean sections • Encourages family involvement • Comfortable hospital birth with physician back-up

Valery Webb, CNM

The Women’s Healthcare Group is proud to provide the very best in Midwifery Services. We are pleased to announce the addition of two experienced, certified nurse midwives to our team of healthcare providers. Valery Webb and Deann Martin are currently scheduling appointments in our Overland Park and Lawrence offices.

Deann Martin, CNM

In addItIon, we offer servIces In:

• Obstetrics • Gynecology • Laparoscopic Surgery • Gynecologic Urology • Contraceptive Counseling • Infertility

Please visit for more information


Women’s Healthcare Group M.D.

Timothy Martin, M.D.

overland Park

Kathleen Stone, M.D.

(Overland Park only)

10550 Quivira Road, Suite #410 913-541-0990

Margaret Estrin, M.D.

Kimberly Tony Moulton, D.O. Schlichter,

M.D. (Overland Park only)


1440 Wakarusa Drive, Suite #400 785-841-0326

Courtney Younglove, M.D.

Michael Proffitt, M.D.

Michelle Langaker,

D.O. (Overland

Jennifer Riggs, Kristi Torline,

ARNP (Overland Park only)


Park only)

Hospital services provided at Overland Park Regional Medical Center and Shawnee Mission Medical Center.

© / mariyaL

Hal Younglove,

complementary health

THE HEAling bEnEfiTS of

The simple, garden-variety lemon is quite understated. We use them to make lemonade, mix them into our drinks to add a little zing, they remove hard stains, are an all-around deodorizer and air freshener and we use them in our cooking as both an ingredient and garnish. When the world gives you lemons, there’s a whole lot more you can make with them than just lemonade. In traditional medicine, the lemon is widely known for its healing powers and is used in many different ways. In fact, the lemon is so powerful that it was used by the Romans as their cure for all types of poison. Although the lemon is often thought

of as acidic, it is very effective in curing many digestion problems when mixed with hot water, including biliousness (stomach pain), nausea, heartburn, disorders of the lower intestines like constipation and worm infestations. It is even known to relieve hiccups. Water plus a few lemons becomes lemon juice. Lemon juice, when taken regularly in the morning, acts as a tonic to the liver and stimulates it to produce bile making it ready to digest the day’s food. It is also thought to help dissolve gallstones. Because of its high vitamin C content, it is thought to help prevent and treat many infections, hasten wound healing and temper down high fever.

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lEMons 15

Lemon juice also relieves symptoms of asthma, tonsillitis and sore throat. Lemon is also a diuretic. This means it is good for people with urinary tract infections and high uric acid problems, such as those with arthritis or rheumatism because it helps flush out all the toxins and bad bacteria. When lemon is mixed with coffee, it is thought to help treat malaria. This concoction is also effective for headaches. When externally applied, lemon juice that is poured onto a small piece of cotton wool and gently applied to the nostrils could stop epistaxis (more commonly known as nose bleeds) although this may also sting a bit. When massaged gently into gums, lemon juice may also stop gum bleeding. Lemon juice with glycerin is effective when used on the lips to treat chapping. This might sound a little strange, but lemon juice applied on your skin can also help prevent sunburn.

Safe and Scenic Living • Rental apartments without a buy-in fee • Garden villas • On-site Assisted Living and skilled nursing care

Lemons are also used as balms in highly concentrated forms. Some may know them as cure-alls. Lemon balms are known for their ability to break fevers by encouraging the patient’s body to perspire. Because of this, lemon balms are recommended for all fevers, no matter what the cause. Lemon balms are also popular treatments for cough and colds, even hay fever. Balms are also used in the treatment of flatulence and other digestive conditions. Menstrual cramps are relieved by lemon balms, as are dizziness, headaches and high blood pressure. Psychologically, lemon balm is used to lift people’s spirits, especially those who are undergoing menopause and are depressed, because it will calm anxieties, clear their minds and center their focus. It is also supposedly improves memory storage and recall.

Join us for Senior Seminar Series Downsizing and Real Estate Seminar Tuesday, April 20, 10 a.m. • Learn from an expert on how to downsize. • Hear tips on selling your home from a real estate professional. Don’t Let Life Fracture Your Funny Bone Wednesday, May 5, 11 a.m. • Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a Mexican feast.

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• Hear a humor therapist discuss how to develop resilience.


816-363-5141• 81st and Wornall, Kansas City, MO

RSVP to or 816-363-5141 Please follow signs to three-story brick building facing Wornall Road. Events will be in the third floor Community Room.

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / duSAn ZidAr

complementary health

Not Feeling

Like yourself


Midlife (30’s-60’s) for women can be the perfect storm – hot flashes, low energy, sleep loss, weight gain, loss of sex drive and memory loss. But you can feel vibrant and healthy again. You can find health care that gives you personalized time and attention.

At The Midlife Wellness Center, Dr. Brenda Smith can help you feel like yourself again. Dr. Smith’s approach includes looking at all aspects of your health: • hormonal health • nutritional and metabolic health • preventative health And above all, you will meet with a true partner in your health. Dr. Smith has worked with women for 24 years and is dedicated to helping women feel vibrantly healthy. Breast thermography is also available. DR. BRENDA SMITH, MD

Visit for testimonials from patients and to learn more about our services.

Dr. Brenda Smith, MD


End your evening with a classic libation



After dinner delight

Š / Ina Peters

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By Michael A. Levine

healthy eating

history of port It is widely known that the British, while not actually growing many grapes for the making of wine, created the wine “trade.” This occurred at a point in history when the British Navy was vast and the most dominant force around the globe. British ships would find a “port” (sometimes merely a beach-head) in which to dock and disembark to discover foodstuffs, crafts and more. The town of Oporto in Portugal was such a location. Ideally suited for the British fleet with its proximity to the sea and mother England it is also home to a wine that became hugely favored by the inhabitants of the British Empire and its

colonies – Port. Port is the tiny country of Portugal’s second largest wine-based export. The top spot belongs to the export of cork. Port is a fortified wine that grew popular in the mid 18th century (much to the detriment of the wines of Bordeaux). Initially, these wines were dry and the fortification (the addition of a dose of brandy) was added after the initial fermentation had been completed. This practice continued through the mid-1750s and was gradually replaced by the now used method of adding the brandy to stop the fermentation earlier on and resulted in a sweeter tasting wine on the palate.

Noval for the occasional Port experience. It has a great Ruby character in both flavor and color but has been aged enough in oak barrels so as to arrive unopened in the “pre-ruined” state. Meaning, that even leaving the bottle opened after a glass or two for a week, a month or even six months you’ll hardly notice any degradation in the flavors of the wine. One of the keys to telling the two styles apart are looking for a plastic capped cork known as a T-top. This

indicates a wine that has seen extended barrel ageing and will have a shelf life after opening. Late Bottled Vintage (LBV) as well as standard Tawny Port, 10-Year-Old Tawny Port and 20 Year-Old Ports usually come with t-top corks. One caveat regarding Port by the glass at a restaurant is to NEVER order a Vintage Port unless you know that it has been kept under nitrogen (A professional level WineKeeper or Cruvinet system) or you are getting the freshly opened bottle.

There are two basic types of Port (except for the additional type known as White Port). They are technically defined as Ruby and Tawny. The noticeable difference is often in the color with Ruby maintaining the deep red color and flavors of fresh fruits whereas the Tawny has turned into the raisin and prune colored wine that occurs from extended barrel ageing. Most Ruby ports are vintage wines made from a single year’s harvest. They will typically continue to develop in the bottle with good storage and have the potential for lasting a century or more. However, once these vintage wines are opened, they do have a limited shelf life at a maximum of perhaps a week in bottle/decanter as a result of oxidation stripping the wine of its fruit and freshness. I generally advise the use of vintage Port for a dinner party and therefore mostly consumed within one night. On the other hand, if the buyer is looking to sip a glass or two over an extended period, try Tawny Ports like NV Grahams Six Grape or NV Quinto do

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froM Top: © iSTockpHoTo.coM / nicHolAS bElTon, oliviEr blondEAu

types of port


healthy eating

ports for pleasure

After Port and Madeira you can always consider another option in Sherry (no, not the plain bottle in your parents’ kitchen that may have been there 10+ years).


my sherry amore After Port and Madeira you can always consider another option in Sherry (no, not the plain bottle in your parents’

ruby Port this young, non-vintage specific style is aged in wood for about three years before release. fruity, simple and inexpensive, it’s the best-selling type of port. ruby port provides a good introduction to the port world.

kitchen that may have been there 10+ years). It is ever-so versatile for you to enjoy Sherry as an aperitif or as a companion to a wonderful dessert. There are many classifications and sub-classifications of Sherry but for the sake of simplification, they can be lumped into two main categories: fino (light, dry) – Lightly fortified (with 15.5 percent alcohol). A yeast called flor grows on the surface of the wine protecting it from oxidation. This changes not only the wine’s flavor and aroma but also the body, making it thinner and more delicate. Enjoy with almonds, olives, seafood and tapas. oloroso (rich, full and sweet) – Stronger fortification (with 18 percent alcohol). Flor does not grow on Oloroso because of the higher level of alcohol. Therefore, the wine is oxidized as it ages instead of after you open the bottle. Dry until sweetened, usually with PX (Pedro Ximenez). Enjoy after dinner with dessert or by itself instead of dessert! The 1927 Alvear Solera PX Cream Sherry is a great find for $20 to $25/bottle.

latE bottlED VintagE (lbV) Port this type is from a specific vintage but usually not from a very top year. the wine ages four to six years in wood before bottling and is then ready to drink, unlike Vintage port. it is quite full-bodied but not as hefty as a Vintage port. tawny Port aged in oak for a long time, resulting in a tawny brownish red color. the age will be stated on the label (i.e. 10, 20, 30 years, etc.). VintagE Port the pinnacle of port production, Vintage port is the wine of a single year blended from several of a house’s best vineyards. it’s bottled at only two years of age, before the wine has much chance to shed its tough tannins. it therefore requires an enormous amount of bottle aging to accomplish the development that did not occur in wood. Vintage port is usually not ready to drink until about 20 years after the vintage. Because it’s very rich and tannic, this wine throws heavy sediment and must be decanted, preferably several hours before drinking. Vintage port can live 70 or more years in top vintages.

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / dAniEl norMAn

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the island of madeira Although not technically Port, Madeira is kind of like a cousin to Port so we’ll put it in this category. Madeira comes in four styles, two fairly dry (Sercial and Verdelho) and two sweet (Bual and Malmsey). The sweeter styles are achieved by halting the fermentation relatively early by adding alcohol or “fortifying” the wine whereas the drier styles are fortified after fermentation. Broadbent Malmsey 10-Year Madeira is still one of the best values on the market and one of my personal favorites. The unique aspect of Madeira is that it is actually (and intentionally) heated. This process caramelizes any sugars in the wine and the wine becomes oxidized without any of the unpleasant aroma or taste that we associate with wine that has gone “bad.” Madeira can be amber in color, sweet, intensely concentrated with a very long finish (think thinned-out maple syrup with a kick – Now try that on your next batch of pancakes!).

it’s always a great time to enjoy port: with a cigar, a plate of cheese or after dinner enjoying a cool spring night.

healthy eating

other dessert wine options legally in the united States, dessert wine refers to wines of 14 percent alcohol or greater. Historically these were fortified, as table wines were typically 12.5 percent. With a greater emphasis on ripe fruit, many dry unfortified wines, particularly Zinfandels, reach 15 percent or more and are thus

legally considered dessert wines and are taxed at a higher rate. Many dessert wines have a much lower alcohol level. despite their name, many are not particularly well suited for consumption with desserts but are consumed on their own or with very rich savory foods such as foie gras.

late harvest riesling

These are made with the Riesling grape that are harvested later than usual. With the damp and cooler conditions that often occur late in the harvest season, the Botrytis fungus (sometimes referred to as noble rot) essentially eats holes in the skin of the grape, allowing water to escape, leaving the natural sugars and a much sweeter wine.


Sauternes is a type of dessert wine from the Sauternais region of the Graves section in the well-known Bordeaux wine making area of France. Sauternes is made from Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle grapes that have been affected by Botrytis cinerea. This causes grapes to become partially raisined, resulting in concentrated and distinctively flavored wines, typically with an arresting golden color.

ice wine (eiswein)

The main thing that separates Ice Wine from late-harvest wines is a technicality. For an Ice Wine to be called so, the grapes must be left on the vine until they freeze at a temperature of 24° F. The cold weather contracts the grapes, forcing out water and concentrating the natural sugars.

vin santo (italian)

The “holy wine of Tuscany” is produced from dried Malvasia grapes. The ambercolored wine is then barrel-aged for several years. Vin Santos can range from dry to sweet and go great with almonds and pecans.

These are really fun wines! Candied-fruit flavor and pairs great with chocolatecovered strawberries! Sparkling and semi-sweet with a beautiful rose color and floral notes on the bouquet.

moscato d’asti (italian)

Moscato can come in many different forms but all hail from the Asti region of Italy. It is a light, sweet, semi-sparkler made from the Muscat grape. These are wonderful to enjoy with a fruit salad, Sunday brunch or while just basking in the sunshine.

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© iSTockpHoTo.coM / donAld gruEnEr

brachetto d’acqui (italian)


myths of the mouth

from periodoNtaL speciaLists

Keeping your mouth healthy takes a lot more than brushing and flossing. Find out how a visit to Periodontal Specialists can improve your overall health – and give you peace of mind.

our periodoNtists Dr. Amy L. Gillihan* Dr. Daniel J. Thomas* Dr. Melissa A. Combs* Dr. Jonathan S. Thomas *Diplomates, American Board of Periodontology

1. BLeediNg gums are Not that Big of a deaL.

2. fLossiNg daiLy is Not that importaNt.

Although many people experience bleeding gums, this symptom is an important sign of gum disease. If left untreated, gum diseases can lead to tooth loss and may contribute to the progression of other diseases including heart disease and diabetes. If you notice “pink in the sink” a periodontist can thoroughly evaluate your gum health.

Recent surveys show that flossing is not part of most Americans’ oral hygiene care. However, bacteria in the mouth are always trying to invade the spaces around our teeth. The surfaces in between the teeth are important. The shape of our teeth and the ability to reach these areas can make it difficult to clean. Daily flossing helps to remove the buildup of plaque and decrease the chances of tooth loss and improve gum health. Regular visits for cleanings with your periodontist help to eliminate bacteria in areas that may

be hard to reach at home.

3. aLL deNtists are the same. Specialists in the health of the gums and surroundings tissues of the teeth are called periodontists. Periodontists have had an extra two to three years of training to evaluate, detect and treat the supportive structures of the teeth. Advances in technology like digital radiographs and intraoral photos allow patients to visualize their gum issues. Our periodontists spend extra time to educate each new patient, so that your questions can be answered.

4. there are No optioNs to repLace missiNg teeth. One of the major causes for tooth loss is gum disease. When this happens many patients feel like they have little options. Dental implants provide a replacement option that closely mimics the tooth. Without replacing the missing tooth, tilting and shifting of other teeth can create difficult to clean areas, poor function, and poor aesthetics. While teeth that remain may become damaged by taking on more pressure. Your periodontist can evaluate your mouth for dental implants which replace teeth to restore a healthy smile.

5. my mouth isN’t “dirty”; i Brush aNd fLoss so i am fiNe. Although poor home care can contribute to the development of gum disease other factors, such as smoking, stress, and diabetes play a role. Most patients don’t realize that gum disease is present because it does not hurt. Genetics can play a major role and you may have been exposed from a family member to the bacteria that cause gum disease. Medications may also lead to oral health issues, including dry mouth and overgrowth of gum tissue which can allow bacteria to flourish. A visit to the periodontist can catch






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209 NE Barry Rd. Kansas City, MO 64155 816.436.6767 816.436.6766 (f)

3033 SW Villa West Dr. Topeka, KS 66614 785.272.0770 785.272.0035 (f)

3355 NE Ralph Powell Rd. Lee’s Summit, MO 64064 816.525.4867 (GUMS) 816.268.5873 (f)

these “unseen” problems before it’s too late.

6. stress has No effect oN your gums. Faced with many issues today, stress can be a major part of life. Studies now show that chronic stress can have an impact on our gums. This impact can be manifested through higher blood pressure, increased smoking, and decreased oral home care among other things. People that are undergoing stress may want to visit a periodontist to have their overall oral health evaluated.

8. i shouLd wait to see a deNtist uNtiL after my pregNaNcy is fiNished. Recent studies are showing that bacteria infection in the mouth may lead to pre term low birth weight babies. During pregnancy, the increase in hormones provides an environment conducive to gum disease. About half of pregnant women notice an increase in bleeding during tooth brushing called pregnancy gingivitis. This can lead to a more serious disease called periodontitis which can destroy the supportive structures of the teeth and has been shown to have links with pre term low birth weight babies.

Deep cleaning around the roots of the teeth can help to eliminate bacteria and reduce this risk.

9. Bad Breath has NothiNg to do with the teeth. Bad breath, or halitosis, is caused by bacteria, in the areas between your teeth and gums and in the crevices of your tongue. A periodontist can aid in the controlling of bad breath by performing a “deep cleaning” to eradicate the bacteria between your gums and teeth. At home, brushing the tongue can reduce bacteria in the crevices of the tongue along with an ADA approved mouth rinse.

10. everyoNe gets deNtures eveNtuaLLy. The normal aging process does not involve losing teeth. Many are lost to gum disease. In fact, it’s the number one cause of tooth loss. With today’s advancement in both diagnosis and treatment, maintaining teeth for a lifetime is a very real possibility. Many issues of gum disease start as early as 35 years of age, and for some in their teens! Early diagnosis, treatment, and prevention are important factors in keeping teeth for life.

deNtaL impLaNts

11. my teeth are seNsitive aNd NothiNg caN Be doNe. Sensitivity to cold water is a common issue for many patients. It may be exposure of the root surfaces of the teeth referred to as gum recession. One of the solutions to recession and sensitivity is to cover the root surface with a soft tissue graft. This allows the root surface to be protected and covered by healthy tissue. This procedure will often eliminate the sensitivity, create a more aesthetic smile, and decreases the “long in the tooth” look.

Endless summer days.

Bunk bed giggles and silly songs.

Adventures and lifelong friendships.

This is what summer camp is made of.



and changing lives By Paige DeRuyscher

Š / Josh Hodge

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A time for Making memories

complementary health

In a time when text messages and e-mails are the chosen form of communication and adventure is reduced to sitting in front of a video game, many kids can benefit greatly from what summer camp has to offer: Experiences that challenge their minds and bodies and engage their senses, opportunities to build relationships and enjoy a sense of belonging and a chance to discover the world around them. Whether they’re learning a new skill, participating in a team sport or just bonding around a campfire, they will be creating memories that last a lifetime. There are many types of summer camps to choose from – daylong or weeklong opportunities, general or special interest camps and camps for children with special needs. But no matter what type, a well-run camp will provide healthy building blocks for the mind, body and spirit that can help your child grow into a confident, well-balanced adult.

Questions to consider when choosing a camp n n n

n n n n

What kinds of opportunities and experiences will your child have? What is the camp philosophy? are the counselors and supervisors mature, well-trained and experienced? What is the staff-to-camper ratio? how are disciplinary and special medical situations handled? is the camp accredited? many camps are accredited by the american camp association ( which measures camps against 300 standards to ensure a safe environment for campers.

local resources ymca of Greater Kansas city offers a variety of summer day camp programs in the Kc area. Day camps are a great way for kids to experience a camp atmosphere without an extended stay away from home. children ages 5-12 can choose from various traditional or specialty camps. “Day camps are affordable and have convenient hours to accommodate working parents,” says paula spreitzer, Director of communications of the ymca of Greater Kansas city. summer of service, a unique opportunity for ages 12-15, is a program that incorporates volunteer work with the development of leadership skills. ymca camps are inclusive of children with special needs and if a child needs extra assistance, he or she will be paired up with a volunteer. Visit ymcasummerfun. org for locations and opportunities in the Kc area.

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complementary health

camp’s lifelong benefits

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living in community If children are going to thrive as adults, they need opportunities to become communityminded. Much of the camp experience is based on becoming part of the family that is created there. Whether it’s bunking together in a cabin, sharing everyday chores or taking part in team activities, there’s no such thing as a “loner” at camp. Children develop a sense of shared responsibility and belonging that will serve them well on the path to adulthood.


developing a healthy identity Entering a new setting and encountering others from different backgrounds helps kids to let go of the “role” they play back at home and in school. The typical camp atmosphere of

inclusion and acceptance frees them to express their true selves, discover their unique passions and build genuine relationships in a safe environment. strengthening the mind, body and spirit Depending on the type of camp, there’s usually a focus on nurturing greater well-being in one or more areas. Many camps challenge kids physically and keep them active throughout the day or there may be a focus on developing creative problem solving skills and other mental exercises. Some programs will include spiritual encounters and growth opportunities as well. enhancing relationships Many parents feel guilty about taking their children to camp, but countless volunteers and former campers agree that it’s one of the best gifts you can give a child. Sure, there will be an adjustment period as with any new experience, but campers often return to their families with increased self-confidence, greater consideration for others and new ideas about how to engage with the world around them. And while few children immediately realize how much they’ve been influenced by the camp experience, years later they often see how their lives were enriched through the relationships and opportunities they encountered there.

camp links christian dance & gymnastics Studio Music House School of Music kc kids fun! – click on summer camp directory nickelodeon parentsconnect gocitykids.parents – click on kansas city kc Summer camps christian youth Theatre

froM lEfT: © iSTockpHoTo.coM / nAncy louiE, JESS WibErg

building self-esteem Good summer camps offer a safe, positive environment where children are comfortable taking healthy risks and setting goals. While at home and in school they can avoid new experiences, at well-run camps, they can’t. Trained counselors challenge campers to try new things and discover their strengths while helping them feel secure and capable in the process. Being away from home allows a child to step out of his or her comfort zone without a (well-meaning!) hovering parent to hinder the process.

Visit and click on Expert Care and Cataracts to learn more about this common condition and surgical options for restoring your vision. Treatment for cataracts has taken a giant leap forward. SEE offers several premium intraocular lens implants, including: • Crystalens™ • ReZoom™ • ReSTOR™ • TECNIS®

Today’s cataract treatments offer a clear advantage. We can help you see better than you have in years, often without glasses or contacts.

We’re Stiles EyeCare Excellence (SEE) and Glaucoma Institute, a leading provider of advanced treatments for aging eyes. Don’t let familiar faces and places turn into a foggy blur. If you have cataracts, we’ve got great news! Treatment options have never been more effective. Today’s premium intraocular lenses can improve your full range of vision so you can see clearly – close up as well as far away.

Michael C. Stiles, M.D., is a leading provider of refractive cataract surgery. Using advanced surgical technology, he can remove the old, clouded lens and replace it with a new, artificial one. This outpatient procedure restores patients’ vision and makes it possible to see more clearly than they have in years.

© / hirlesteanu constantin-ciprian

If you or someone you love is diagnosed with cataracts, we invite you to SEE ... the clear choice for advanced eye care.

Stiles EyeCare Excellence & Glaucoma Institute 7200 W. 129th St. Overland Park, KS 66213 Satellite locations in Kansas City • Lawrence • Topeka • North Kansas City


hearing C s,

eb Cel May is better Hearing Month and associated audiologists, inc. encourages you to do all you can to protect and preserve your hearing.

1. avoid or protect yourself from loud noise. If you have to raise your voice to be heard by someone an arm’s length away, the noise is probably too loud. 2. reduce noise when possible. Turn the volume down on the television, radio and personal music players. 3. When you are exposed to unavoidable loud noise, use hearing protection. Associated Audiologists makes custom hearing protection for musicians, hunters and iPod listeners, among others. 4. if you are regularly exposed to loud noise, experience ringing in your ears, or if you believe you may have hearing loss, call associated audiologists, inc. for a diagnostic hearing evaluation and personal consultation.


iCe •

Every day you use your hearing to communicate, gather information, navigate your surroundings and to enjoy life. But when you are exposed to loud noises through work, recreation or home, the sensitive structures of the inner ear can be damaged. This causes permanent noiseinduced hearing loss, the most common type of preventable hearing loss. Ten million Americans have already suffered irreversible hearing damage from loud noise, but you can avoid a similar fate.


Protect your hearing


Can you hear the birds singing?


o er v

25 years

• asso

This brightly-colored songbird, the Western Meadowlark, is the state bird of Kansas and it sings many varied songs.

g 25 years


in at



25 years of

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your best


For 25 years, Associated Audiologists, Inc. has served the Kansas City area’s hearing healthcare needs.

We are excited to announce the opening of our new office located at the Shawnee Mission Outpatient Pavilion, 23401 Prairie Star Parkway, Suite 225, in Lenexa. The office will be open every Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Stacey Baldwin, Au.D., F.A.A.A., will be the audiologist providing service to our Lenexa patients.

You are also welcome to schedule an appointment with any of our 11 university-trained audiologists at one of our other four offices conveniently located in Overland Park, Prairie Village, Shawnee Mission and Leavenworth. Each office uses advanced diagnostic equipment and offers hearing aids from the world’s most respected manufacturers. Additionally, our audiologists use verification technology for all hearing aid fittings.

The Area’s Premier Audiology and Hearing Aid Practice

Serving you in 5 convenient locations: Overland Park Saint Luke’s South Medical Building 913-498-2827

Lenexa New Shawnee Mission Outpatient Pavilion 913-634-5583

Prairie Village Prairie Village Office Center 913-262-5855

Leavenworth Cushing Medical Plaza 913-682-1870

Shawnee Mission Shawnee Mission Medical Building 913-403-0018 


Take advantage of local farm fresh food this season By Phil Toevs

Phil Toevs is a chef at Wheatfields, Bakery Café 904 Vermont Street Lawrence, Kan. 785-841-5553

© / Milos Luzanin

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Spring has finally begun to emerge from the long, cold winter, so my focus has returned to local farm fresh food. While I know we have awhile until we are inundated with vine ripe tomatoes and fresh basil, the glimpse of spring reminds me of those wonderful flavors on their way. I used a seasonal vegetable calendar my first year at WheatFields to get a bearing on what vegetables best represent the regional season. Vegetable calendars are readily available online through your favorite search engine. Through the discussion board we at Enhance are beginning this issue, feel free to ask questions and bring your recipe and preparation suggestions regarding local vegetables. Our local farmers are always ready for our business, and the lure of the freshest produce we can get is all the impetus I need to support our hard working local food producers. For all the economic questions we are facing on a daily basis, keeping our money nearby through purchasing local foods is a great way to participate in the strengthening of our local economies. Besides,what better immediate satisfaction than fresh flavors on our tables?

citrus glazed alaskan halibut ingredients n


4 Halibut steaks, cut to 5 oz. portions

glaZe n n n

4 limes or lemons, juiced 4 tablespoons sesame oil 1 tablespoon honey

Spray one side of the steaks with non-stick coating and place down on the grill. upon turning and flipping the steaks, brush them with the glaze.

cucumber salsa for grilled fish ingredients n n n n


1 cucumber, skinned and seeded, small dice 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped fine ¼ cup red onion, minced ¼ cup yellow bell pepper, seeded and minced

n n n

2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar Salt and black pepper to taste 1 teaspoon chili powder 1 clove garlic, minced

directions combine all ingredients and allow flavors to meld one hour before serving.

grill-braised cabbage ingredients n n n n n

1 red cabbage, cored 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pats ¼ cup, packed, fresh herbs, stemmed 1 cup parmesan cheese, shredded Salt and black pepper to taste

directions core the cabbage from the top down through the stem with a boning knife or a long filet knife. Stuff the cabbage with butter, fresh herbs (any herb that you enjoy) and cheese and wrap in aluminum foil. place on the grill and cook until cabbage is pliable to the touch. remove cabbage from the foil and chop into serving size chunks.

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froM Top: © iSTockpHoTo.coM / bocHkArEv pHoTogrApHy, JovAn nikolic

healthy eating


There is hope.

Bladder control problems? Experts at Kansas City Urology Care have a small solution to a big problem. If bladder control problems are keeping you from enjoying your life, you’re not alone. More than 33 million people in America – 1 in 6 adults – suffer from bladder control issues. If you’ve tried other treatments but are still suffering from bladder control problems, you might be relieved to hear about another option: InterStim® Neuromodulation. How Does InterStim® Neuromodulation Work? InterStim® Neuromodulation works with the sacral nerves, located near the tailbone. The sacral nerves control the bladder and muscles related to urinary function. If the brain and sacral nerves don’t communicate correctly, the nerves will not tell the bladder to function properly. Will It Work for Me? You can try InterStim® Neuromodulation during a trial assessment period to find out whether it will work for you before making a long-term commitment.

The experts at Kansas City Urology Care have 11 years of experience in implanting this cutting-edge technology. You can trust KCUC for all of your urological concerns. Kansas City:

Overland Park:

• Research Medical Center 816-444-5525

• Menorah Medical Center 913-338-5585

• St. Luke’s Plaza 816-531-1234

• St. Luke’s South 816-531-1234


• Shawnee Mission Medical Center 913-831-1003

Lee’s Summit:

• Across from St. Luke’s East 816-524-1007


• Shawnee Mission Outpatient Pavilion 913-831-1003

North Kansas City: • North Kansas City Hospital 816-842-6717

health and wellness

it is EstiMatED that PEoPlE with untrEatED anD unControllED guM DisEasE arE at: n n n n n n

2 to 4 times greater risk of heart attack 2 times more likely to die of a heart attack 3 times more likely to die from a stroke 4 to 7 times more likely to die with diabetes 63 percent more likely to develop pancreatic cancer 4 to 7 times more likely to give preterm birth

A HEAlTHy MouTH iS THE STArT of A HEAlTHy body | by John e. holmes, dds

it has ofteN BeeN saiD the mouth is the GateWay to the BoDy. What maNy iN the meDical professioN are NoW realiziNG, thouGh, is that your mouth is also the WiNDoW to your health. the truth is, you caN’t haVe a cleaN Bill of health Without haViNG a healthy mouth.

Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is a major oral health problem affecting a majority of our population. The Surgeon General estimates that 70 to 80 percent of the American population has some degree of gum disease. This condition is characterized as a serious bacterial infection that attacks the soft, and in more severe cases, hard tissue attachment to teeth.

Dr. Holmes is in a private practice partnership in Overland Park, Kan., at 12870 Metcalf Ave. Questions can be sent to or call 913-851-8400. A no-charge “healthy mouth consultation” is available.

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froM Top: © iSTockpHoTo.coM /WEb king, olEg bAbicH

gum disease


health and wellness

PErioDontal DisEasE anD DiabEtEs

guM DisEasE anD CarDioVasCular DisEasE


Diabetes is another major systemic disease affected by periodontal disease. Though one does not directly cause the other, they each have the ability to worsen the other. Individuals with diabetes are more likely to develop gum disease. In fact, diabetes is the number one systemic risk factor for gum disease. Once they have it, these individuals have a much harder time managing oral health due to a decreased ability to fight infection. On the flip side, diabetics with gum disease have a difficult time managing that disease. Blood sugar control is worsened because the body develops resistance to insulin. Insulin’s role is to facilitate the uptake of sugar from the blood into cells where it is used. When sugar can’t get into cells it stays in the blood and creates a condition called hyperglycemia. Hyperglycemia increases diabetic complications.

As bacteria invade the gum tissue and cause gingivitis, toxins are released that ulcerate the tissue allowing bacteria to penetrate deeper, until they reach bone. The same toxic attack continues on the bone. To make matters worse, the body’s immune response releases chemicals that destroy bone. The net result over time is deep tissue pockets and loss of bone around teeth. As the bone loss becomes severe enough, teeth get loose, painful puss pockets form and in many cases teeth have to be removed, resulting in full dentures or partial dentures generally being the restorative options. Gum disease, much like diabetes, cannot be cured. It can, like diabetes, be controlled. Ideally, individuals practice good oral hygiene at home and get professional dental cleanings as directed by their dentist to prevent gum disease all together. Once a person is diagnosed

with gum disease, it is imperative they pursue regular dental care. For most of these individuals, that means getting their teeth cleaned every 3 to 4 months, using a good electric toothbrush, flossing, and irrigating with an oral irrigator. The effect of gum disease on oral health has been known for years. There is a lot more to the story though. In the past 10-15 years researches have discovered very compelling information as to how gum disease affects the rest of the body. As a bacterial infection, gum disease is a chronic trigger for the body’s immune response. It introduces inflammatory mediators, as well as other toxins, into the body’s circulation. These inflammatory mediators stimulate the liver to produce acute-phase proteins, such as C-reactive protein, that are associated with adverse effects on organs.

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / AndrE blAiS

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The effect of gum disease on the cardiovascular system was one of the first oral-systemic relationships recognized. In studies, bacteria from the mouth have been found clumped in artery plaques. One theory is that these bacteria stick to fatty plaques in the bloodstream and directly contribute to blockages of vessels. If a blockage occurs in a coronary artery or in the brain, then a heart attack or stroke could result. Another theory is that, as a result of the inflammatory response elicited by oral bacteria, blood vessels swell. The result of this is narrowing of arteries and an increased risk for clots. Increased levels of bacteria increase the likelihood of atherosclerosis, or hardening of arteries. Note that plaque in arteries and plaque on teeth are not the same. Plaque, in general terms, explains a deposit or buildup of a substance in the body. In this case, the plaque substances have totally different make-ups.

health and wellness

Dentists are not only improving lives by treating disease processes that affect overall health, but are beginning to perform screening tests to help identify, diagnose and, in some cases, prevent systemic disease. n Dentists are providing oral cancer screenings and using technology to help identify oral cancer. n Dentists are educated on how to recognize certain disorders and diseases that often first present signs and symptoms in, or around, the mouth. n Dentists are starting to offer fDa approved finger nick blood screening tests that help identify the presence of high cholesterol, diabetes, and inflammatory markers like c-reactive protein that help assess the risk of systemic disease. n Dentists and physicians are beginning to work together in the interest of patients. n Dentists need to make sure all patients, and especially those with gum disease, see a physician for physical examination. n physicians should be questioning patients about dental health and prompting individuals who do not receive regular dental attention to do so. Dental health is now an important part of people’s health histories; any oral disease should be disclosed to the physician by the patient or the dentist. if this is done, we will have a bigger impact in prevention and treatment of disease processes.

guM DisEasE anD PrEgnanCy It is very normal to see inflamed gums, or gingivitis, during pregnancy because of changing hormone levels. It is not uncommon for pregnant women to need dental cleanings every three months during pregnancy to minimize gingivitis. For pregnant women with gum disease, we must worry about the baby as well. Pregnant women with gum disease are four to seven times more likely to give pre-term birth. One theory is that the baby is exposed to bacteria from the mother’s mouth, which causes an inflammatory response leading to pre-term delivery. This affects fetal growth and viability. It is believed pregnant women are also at increased risk for pre-eclampsia. This is characterized by excessive protein in the urine and very high blood pressure that affects both mother and baby adversely.

oral hEalth anD CanCEr Research will continue to unravel the relationships between oral and systemic health. The area of cancer is one that may be telling. In one study done by the Harvard School of Public Health it was found that non-smoking men with gum disease had a two-fold increased risk of pancreatic cancer as compared to non-smokers without gum disease. It may be possible that increased levels of inflammatory chemicals resulting from gum disease help promote the formation of cancer cells. More research is needed in this area.

hiDDEn syMPtoMs We often see people who haven’t seen a dentist in years but brush and floss regularly. These individuals usually don’t have cavities, but often times do have gum disease. They don’t know they have gum disease because it is symptomless until it progresses. n One symptom that may be seen is redness of the gums and a little bleeding during brushing n With smokers, this may not even be seen because their gums get callused n Bad breath, or halitosis, is another possible sign n The only real way to be sure your mouth and gums are healthy is to have regular dental cleaning and check-ups

make an appointment only 66 percent of people see a dentist at least once per year. this includes children. there are many reasons for this, and it’s not always a lack of insurance. for many, bad dental experiences as a child have created a great fear of dentists. But dentistry is not what it once was. Not only has technology been great for dentistry, but dentists and their teams are much more focused on being gentle, caring and creating pleasant experiences.

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a new frontier


Your business is the backbone of America. And we’ve got your back.

When your employees need care, you want to make sure it’s the best. With UnitedHealthcare, your employees can choose the right doctor for them from the nation’s largest single proprietary network of physicians. And with our extensive database, we can direct them to doctors who meet the national medical standards and practices guidelines for quality of care and cost efficiency. To learn more, visit us at or contact your broker.

© 2010 United HealthCare Services, Inc. Insurance coverage provided by or through UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company or its affiliates. Administrative services provided by UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company, United HealthCare Services, Inc. or their affiliates. Health Plan coverage provided by or through UnitedHealthcare of the Midwest. Inc. UHCKS478636-000

health and wellness

PrEVEntion disease it has been found that their levels of C-reactive protein have been lowered by 50 to 90 percent as a result of having their gum disease treated. This inflammatory marker is in some way related to many disease processes and need to keep its levels at a minimum.

| Have your teeth cleaned at a dental office as directed by your dentist. This may be as little as once per year. Most will need cleanings twice per year. straighten your teeth | Many think that getting braces or Invisalign is a cosmetic treatment. In reality, the cosmetic result is a nice byproduct of treating crowded teeth. More importantly, by straightening crowded teeth, you are able to do a better job at home keeping them clean. It is easier for the dental hygienist to clean at office visits as well. What this means as a patient is a quicker, more pleasant experience at the dental office. It also means fewer visits to the dental office because straightening teeth lessens the number of cavities, the amount

of wear on teeth, and the likelihood of developing gum disease. For those with gum disease, straightening teeth makes it easier to control the disease and in some cases may even help teeth that have become unstable from bone loss. scaling and root planning | For gum disease, an initial treatment of Scaling and Root Planning (SRP) is completed first. After initial SRP treatment, maintenance visits are needed every three to four months. At the SRP appointment, the teeth are thoroughly cleaned both above and below the gum line. It is imperative to get all debris and bacteria removed from the crevices around the teeth and from the root surfaces. Brushing and flossing won’t do it.

Š iSTockpHoTo.coM / AnTHony roSEnbErg

clean your teeth

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You must see a dentist regularly. If you are healthy, it is a great way to promote health for years to come. If you are not totally healthy, you can minimize complications from systemic disease by preventing gum disease or treating it if it is present. For people with periodontal


n n


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n n

Asthma Eustachian tube dysfunction and otitis media (ear infections) Sinusitis nasal polyps Allergic conjunctivitis Atopic dermatitis (eczema or dry skin)

Š iSTockpHoTo.coM / lEviTicuS

allergic rhinitis can be associated with other medical conditions

health and wellness

Allergic reactions Allergens from all kinds of sources can take over your life, so learn how to control them By Kathy Farrell, MD

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Allergic rhinitis affects more than 40 million people and is the fifth most common chronic illness. Allergies can adversely affect both mental and physical health including over 3.8 million lost work days and school days annually. Living in the Midwest can be a source of multiple allergy triggers. Pollens are small airborne particles given off by trees, grasses and weeds. Some circulate all year round and others only at certain times of the year. Molds are found inside and outdoors. They give off spores causing allergic reactions. There are several other allergens including: food, animal dander, dust mites, cockroaches and medications. Other triggers cause non-allergic rhinitis such as strong odors, fumes and cigarette smoke. Many people with allergies may think they have a common cold as the symptoms can be very similar. The difference between cold symptoms and allergies, is that it seems the cold doesn’t want to go away. See your health care provider if your symptoms persist more than one week.


health and wellness

allergy symptoms Itchy watery eyes that may cause a vicious cycle of itch, rub, water, blink and puffy red eyes. Some people have Denne lines, which look like small wrinkles under the lower lid. Others have allergic conjunctivitis which makes the conjunctival lining look like a cobblestone road on clinical exam. Allergy finding may also include boggy purplish blue turbinates inside the nose and dark circles “allergic shiners” caused by venous congestion.

Nasal Pruitus or itchy nose

The “allergic salute” involves lifting the tip of the nose upward to relieve itching and creating a nasal crease or wrinkle on the base of the bridge of the nose over time. Some people grimace secondary to nasal itching as well. Postnasal drip which can cause bad breath and a cough. The drainage from the back of the nasal passageway leads into the posterior pharynx of our throat. Drainage therefore can lead to a sore throat.

Mouth breathing caused by persistent sneezing and stuffiness or nasal congestion. Moodiness Chronic allergic rhinitis can create moodiness because of lack of adequate sleep. More than two-thirds of allergy sufferers have interruption of sleep, feel tired, irritable, may have reduced productivity, concentration and frequent headaches.


1. Keep windows closed and when possible use air conditioner. Also, get updated pollen count forecasts at 2. Shower after doing yard work or exercising outside, carry clothes in a bag to the washing machine. Wear a microfiber facemask during high pollen counts. 3. Preventatively take allergy medications (antihistamines) 30 minutes before going outside. 4. While outside, focus on breathing through your nose, especially when exercising. 5. Use high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters for furnace and vacuum. 6. Bathe your pet weekly to reduce pollen in pet fur. 7. Consider using a paper dust filter mask

Testing for allergies There is a blood test that can be drawn called immunocap by phadia. This is a blood test that can detect 95 percent of circulating triggers in your bloodstream over the past eight months. Immunocap is a newer allergy test that can detect IGE levels that may help profile your allergic triggers. Knowing your triggers can reduce or even prevent your symptoms.

Clockwise from top left: © / Yula Zubritsky, ArtAs, Jani Bryson, Dean Turner

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preventing pollen triggers

health and wellness

There is a cumulative effect of allergens. If you have multiple triggers, each will make your symptoms worse. By reducing your exposure to allergic triggers, you help reduce your symptoms and may even keep you off medication. animal dander prevention n n n

reduce dust mites and cockroaches n Keep your house clean and clutter free n Vacuum, wash dishes, keep food and garbage in closed containers n Wash bedding weekly in hot water n Encase mattress, pillow and box spring in allergen proof coverings n Change furnace and air conditioner filter regularly and use dehumidifier in your home n Don’t store paper bags, newspapers or cardboard boxes in your home n Seal plumbing openings, cracks and crevices n Hire a professional exterminator to eliminate cockroaches if persist

natural remedies european herb butterbur pills can

freeZe-dried nettles and a tonic

made from the herb goldenseal, which can be added to a salt water nasal spray. Saline washes out pollen and reduces or thins mucous. goldenseal

grape see extract

and a flavonoid compound called quercetin. both occur naturally in many foods (particularly red wine) and when used in supplement form they can help reduce allergy symptoms.


mold prevention n




hot, spicy foods help to thin mucous secretions, which can clear nasal passages. Add cayenne pepper, hot ginger and fenugreek. ragweed sufferers

should avoid melon, banana, cucumber, sunflower seeds, chamomile and any herbal supplements containing echinacea, all of which makes

ragweed symptoms worse. acupuncture is thought to affect your immune system, where allergic reactions begin note: never mix alternative treatments with traditional drugs without your doctor’s approval.




avoid raking leaves, mowing, mulch, compost or working with hay avoid barns, greenhouses, sleeping bags used outside and uncut fields use a dehumidifier to lower humidity in your home and basement fix water leaks, clean furnace filters, refrigerator and dehumidifier pans with bleach thoroughly dry clothes before storing clean moldy areas with fungicide or bleach

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© iSTockpHoTo.coM / oyTun kArAdAyi

control symptoms of hay fever and grass allergy.

has astringent and antibacterial properties that can help this.

medications Talk to your doctor regarding allergy medications. Antihistamines (OTC Zyrtec, Claritin) are effective in treating itching, sneezing, runny nose and eye symptoms. Zyrtec can be more potent but also more sedating; switching to a p.m. dose may help with sedation. If you experience congestion, oral decongestants (Sudafed, Mucinex) can help short term but can cause stimulation and should only be used for patients 12 and older. Long term you may need to see your health provider to consider prescribing a nasal corticosteroid spray (Flonase, Nasonex, Nasacort, veramyst etc.). Nasal corticosteroids are safe and effective and work better than antihistamines. Consider topical eye drops if systemic antihistamine don’t relieve symptoms.

Wash pet weekly Keep pet out of the bedroom confine pet to room with polished floor and wipeable furniture change hepa filter regularly and vacuum often


local spotlight

turning point: the center for hope and healing | greater kansas city area

hope and healing EvEry yEAr, THouSAndS of pEoplE in kAnSAS ciTy are diagnosed with serious or chronic physical illnesses, and thousands more have been living with illness for years. chronic illnesses extract a toll far beyond the medical symptoms and have great impact on people’s psychological, emotional, economic and social well-being. Just as important is the impact on

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the individual’s family. That’s where Turning point comes into play.


by cathy pendleton

hope and healing

facing a diagnosis

resilience as a foundation

despite the sophistication of kansas city’s medical care, historically, there have not been sufficient resources in the area to effectively deal with the issues beyond the physical aspects of the disease process.

from the very instant that someone receives a diagnosis of a serious or chronic physical illness, life has changed and it will never be the same again – both for the person with the diagnosis and for their loved ones.

families facing a diagnosis of a serious or chronic physical illness are challenged with long and often fruitless searches for complementary therapies, support networks, assistance in assembling and working with a health care team. dr. Moira Mulhern envisioned a gathering place that would serve as a community resource for hope and healing. Turning point: The center for Hope and Healing began offering programs in January 2002.

“normal” takes on a whole new meaning and often involves schedule changes, numerous trips to the doctor’s office, medication changes, second opinions, difficult treatment decisions, exploring community resources, trying to figure out how to talk to family members and friends about what’s going on, changes in relationships, job and roles, financial changes, among others.

As they enter the space, participants experience the welcoming staff, bright colors, fresh flowers and comfy living room of Turning point and realize they’ve come to the right place. Turning point offers a warm, nurturing gathering place that provides a wide array of innovative education and support services to enhance the lives of adults and families living with any serious or chronic physical illness. 

Turning point is a gathering place for individuals, families and friends living with cancer and other serious or chronic physical illnesses. The mission is to transform the mind, body, and spirit of individuals, families and friends living with serious or chronic physical illness. it provides innovative education services and tools that inspire people to take charge of their illness and live life to its fullest – even in the midst of illness.

And, with those changes, come a myriad of feelings: fear, sadness, anger, grief, frustration, anxiety, depression, to name a few. it’s like the rug’s been pulled out from under you and you’re trying to regain some sense of balance and control again.

The research that has been done in the area of resilience (the ability to move through the stressors of life and to bounce back) has shown that resilient people are able to identify what they’re feeling and to express those feelings in effective ways. Turning point’s programs teach people skills for managing the emotional roller-coaster that goes with illness.

“it NeVer WoulD haVe DaWNeD oN us to asK our DauGhter to DraW a picture of hoW she felt aBout my Wife’s caNcer. she Was aBle to talK With other KiDs aBout all of the feeliNGs she Was haViNG aBout her mom’s illNess aND to learN Ways to Deal With

Throughout Turning Point, participants see images of folded cranes, which have become a universal symbol of hope.

all of those feeliNGs.” – comment from a Turning Point participant

cutting-edge programs

tending to the needs of children

free programs

Turning point offers cutting-edge programs that are designed to tend to the mind, body, emotions and spirit and to complement whatever medical care the person is receiving.

The children’s program is open to any child whose life has been impacted by a serious or chronic physical illness – either their own or that of a family member.

Anyone who has been diagnosed with a serious or chronic physical illness is invited to participate. Attendees may be living with cancer, parkinson’s disease, MS, diabetes, to name a few. The primary supporters of those diagnosed with an illness are also invited and encouraged to attend.

“children are little sponges and they are constantly absorbing and learning from the environment in which they live,” says children’s director Annie Seal. “play is a child’s natural language and medical play allows children the opportunity to express feelings, concerns and concepts related to their own or a loved one’s illness.” Annie is also available to offer parent consultations and individual therapeutic and medical play.

tsuru: thE JaPanEsE CranE – a syMbol of hoPE Shortly after World War ii, folded origami cranes came to symbolize a hope for peace thanks to Sadako Sasaki. diagnosed with leukemia after being exposed to radiation after the bombing of Hiroshima, Sadako wanted to fold 1,000 cranes in hopes of being rewarded with health, happiness, and a world of eternal peace.

Although she died before reaching her goal, the tradition of sending origami cranes to the Hiroshima memorial has endured. Today this tradition of folding 1,000 cranes represents a form of healing and hope during challenging times.

Turning point is funded by grants, foundations, donations and fundraisers throughout the year. All programs are available to participants at no charge, with donations being greatly appreciated. Cathy Pendleton, director of adult programs annie seal, director of the children’s program 913-383-8700

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froM Top: © iSTockpHoTo.coM / pHAif, olEg pidodnyA

They offer a variety of body movement programs (yoga, t’ai chi, pilates, etc.) and programs on topics such as nutrition, spirituality, neuroplasticity of the brain, resilience, meditation, cancer survivorship, art, music, supporting the supporters, energy work, emotional intelligence and humor, to name a few. While a great deal of support is given and received in the programs, they also have a strong commitment to teaching people skills for managing all of the feelings that go with illness.




Your rotator cuff is made up of the 4 muscles and tendons in your shoulder. The main function of the rotator cuff is to hold the ball of your upper arm bone firmly in your shoulder socket. The combination results in the greatest range of motion of any joint in your body. A rotator cuff injury includes any type of irritation or damage to your rotator cuff muscles or tendons. Causes of a rotator cuff injury may include falling, lifting and repetitive arm activities – especially those done overhead, such as throwing a baseball, swimming or placing items on overhead shelves. The bicep tendon also helps with stability of the shoulder. The attachment of the bicep tendon is at the superior aspect of the shoulder socket. Injury involves the labrum and cartilage restraints of the shoulder. TREATMENT OPTIONS ■ Physical therapy ■ Surgery to repair the tear, remove a bone spur or calcium deposits ■ Arthroplasty: Some long-standing rotator cuff tears over time may contribute to the development of rotator cuff arthropathy, which can include severe arthritis. Partial shoulder replacement (hemiarthroplasty) or total shoulder replacement (prosthetic arthroplasty) may be necessary

The ability to move in many directions can leave your shoulders prone to injury. A dislocated shoulder is an injury in which your upper arm bone pops out of the cup-shaped socket that’s part of your shoulder blade. SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS ■ A visibly deformed or out of place shoulder ■ Swelling or discoloration (bruising) ■ Intense pain ■ Inability to move the joint Shoulder dislocation may also cause numbness, weakness or tingling near the injury, such as in your neck or down your arm. The muscles in your shoulder may spasm from the disruption, often increasing the intensity of your pain. While you are waiting for medical treatment, don’t move the joint and put ice on the joint to help reduce pain and swelling by controlling internal bleeding and the buildup of fluids. TREATMENT Immediate treatment to place the dislocated joint back into place. An x-ray is important to evaluate for fractures or continued dislocation. A high percentage of athletes with dislocations unfortunately redislocate with activity. You may need surgery if you have an unstable shoulder because of torn ligaments and joint capsule. These procedures are usually done arthroscopically which are minimally invasive.


The off-season is the key to an athlete’s development. It is during this time that the Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demand (SAID) principle is applied to training. For a pitcher, this involves alternating between long-toss and short-toss throwing at half speed with enforced rest at least two days per week. During the season, the same principle applies with a proportionate increase in the frequency and duration of training.




INJURIES IMPINGEMENT LESIONS (SYNDROME) The large superficial muscles around the glenohumeral joint (such as the deltoid, trapezius, latissimus dorsi and pectoralis major) provide the shoulder’s power. These muscles provide their propulsive force through their powerful concentric contraction. The actions comprising the overhead throw, the tennis serve, the javelin throw and swimming strokes are all made up of relatively similar mechanisms. Of importance is the degree, repetitiveness, and nature of the forces involved and whether any impact occurs such as in spiking a volleyball. Because of the biomechanical action of the rotator cuff, dysfunction from injury or disease can lead to significant problems, particularly in the athlete’s shoulder in which the stresses are so great. Patients with primary impingement more commonly present at an older age. This diagnosis implies an anatomic narrowing of the subacromial space. Nonoperative management is attempted, but if that fails, we advocate surgical decompression earlier than in someone with secondary impingement. Arthroscopic evaluation is now the standard of care for athletes with rotator cuff and impingement lesions.

Computer assisted navigation technology its position and smart wireless instruments instantaneously transfers the data to a computer in the operating room.

Computer assisted navigation technology for orthopedic surgery is designed to allow a surgeon to align an artificial joint with precision within the mechanical axis of your lower extremity.

This information is then displayed as an interactive model of the anatomy or “blueprint” that supplies the surgeon the optimum angles, lines and measurements needed to align the implant within the patient very precisely and accurately.

Precise alignment is an important factor that may reduce joint wear and extend the life of the implant. Orthopedic navigation technology is similar to directional tracking systems used in cars and ships – it is, in effect, a global positioning system (GPS) for the surgeon. Infrared sensors placed in the operating room act like satellites constantly monitoring the location of markers and instruments placed along a patient’s anatomy. As a surgeon moves an instrument within a patient’s joint, the infrared sensors calculate

This technology is based on mathematical formulas that has proven to be consistently very accurate and reproducible for the total joint patient. Computer-assisted surgery may allow for less-invasive surgical techniques which has several advantages, including: faster recovery, reduced length of hospital stay, less scarring, reduced blood loss during surgery, and shorter post-operative physical rehabilitation.

Daniel Farrell, M.D., is Board Certified SubSpeciality Orthopedic Sports Medicine. DANIEL FARRELL, MD Dr. Daniel Farrell specializes in computer-assisted surgery, which may allow for less-invasive surgical techniques which has several advantages, including faster recovery, reduced length of hospital stay, less scarring, reduced blood loss during surgery, and shorter post-operative physical rehabilitation. He received his MD at St. Louis University, in St. Louis, MO. He also holds a master’s degree in Exercise Science/Emphasis in Biomechanics. Dr. Farrell understands the importance of painless functional mobility. He enjoys training and participating in the sport of triathlon. Dr. Farrell has completed over 500 successful computer assisted total joint arthroplasties.


Board certified in Orthopedic Surgery Subspecialty Board certified in Orthopedic Sports Medicine American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery American College of Sports Medicine Phi Epsilon Kappa Honor Society

CONTACT DR. FARRELL Overland Park Orthopedics, LLC Orthopaedic Surgery & Total Joint Replacement Overland Park Regional Medical Center 12200 W. 106th Street, Ste. 400 Overland Park, KS 66215 (913) 541-8897 •

health and wellness

guArding AgAinST

hearing loss THiS condiTion

An EvEning ouT WiTH friEndS AT A populAr rESTAurAnT SoundS likE fun. buT

AffEcTS pEoplE

if you’rE onE of THE 36 Million AMEricAn AdulTS in THE uniTEd STATES WHo

lEArn HoW you cAn proTEcT THiS invAluAblE SEnSE

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by sherry osburn


HAS A HEAring loSS, THE THougHT iS MorE likEly To MAkE you cringE.

In fact, according to a report from the National Council on Aging (NCOA), hearing loss can have a significant negative impact on quality of life. In the NCOA’s survey of 2,300 hearingimpaired adults, age 50 or older, those with untreated hearing loss were more likely to report depression, anxiety, and paranoia and less likely to participate in organized activities, compared to those who wore hearing aids. Fortunately, with the help of a qualified audiologist and advanced technology, most individuals with hearing loss can find help. Learn the signs and symptoms of hearing loss, how it can affect your life and what you can do about it. what causes hearing loss? n sensorineural hearing loss occurs in the inner ear (cochlea). It represents about 95 percent of all hearing loss. Causes include aging, noise exposure, disease and genetics. This is often referred to as “nerve loss or nerve deafness.” It is usually treated with hearing aids and amplification. n conductive hearing loss occurs in the ear canal, ear drum and middle ear space. It represents 5 percent of all hearing losses. It is typically caused by trauma or diseases, such as external or middle ear infections, fluid, wax impaction or malformation of the ear. It is most often treated with medical intervention. n mixed hearing loss is a combination of sensorineural and conductive hearing loss.

who should you see? An audiologist is a licensed healthcare professional who specializes in evaluating, diagnosing and treating people with hearing loss and balance disorders. Because of the sophisticated technology in hearing instruments, newly licensed audiologists must hold a doctoral level degree to practice. The Au.D. is the clinical doctorate for audiology. The first step is to get your hearing evaluated by an audiologist to determine the degree of hearing loss you have and what can be done. Although most hearing loss is permanent, an audiologist can determine the best treatment, which may include hearing aids, assistive listening devices and hearing rehabilitation.

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / AnSSi ruuSkA

of All AgES, So

hearing loss side effects hearing loss is associated with shortterm memory loss. a recent study from Brandeis university found older adults with mild to moderate hearing loss spent so much cognitive energy on trying to hear accurately, that it diminished their ability to remember a short word list. as a result, their cognitive functioning was poorer than those individuals of the same age who had good hearing. hearing loss leads to stress and fatigue because it requires so much effort to listen to what someone is saying – particularly in a noisy environment. according to a Better hearing institute national study, americans with unaddressed hearing loss make less money than people with normal hearing. the study found that wearing a hearing aid reduces the amount of income lost. specifically, untreated hearing loss negatively affects household income, on average, by nearly $23,000 per year depending on the degree of hearing loss. the use of hearing aids mitigates those negative effects by about 50 percent.

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Š iSTockpHoTo.coM / lEv dolgATSHJov

age is Just a number it’s a common misconception that hearing loss only occurs as we age. According to the better Hearing institute, hearing loss affects: n Three in 10 people over age 60 n one in six baby boomers n one in 14 generation Xers n At least 1.4 million children 18 or younger n The majority of people with hearing loss (65 percent) are below retirement age n The majority of people with hearing loss (60 percent) are males n Three in 1,000 infants who are born with serious to profound hearing loss


health and wellness

Turn iT doWn

decibel decisions

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The American Speechlanguage-Hearing Association estimates millions of Americans have a hearing loss that can be treated. if you see yourself in one of the six statements below, you should consult an audiologist for a diagnostic hearing evaluation.


1. you frequently ask people to repeat themselves. 2. you often turn your ear toward a sound to hear it better. 3. you understand people better when you wear your glasses or look directly at their faces. 4. you have difficulty following group conversations. 5. you keep the volume of the radio or Tv at a level that others say is too loud. 6. you have pain or ringing in your ears.

loudnESS iS MEASurEd in uniTS cAllEd dEcibElS (db). norMAl convErSATion MEASurES AbouT 60 db. SoundS AbovE 75 db cAn cAuSE HEAring loSS by dAMAging THE HAir cEllS in THE innEr EAr.

These hair cells assist sound waves in reaching the brain, where they are interpreted as sound. When they are damaged, optimum hearing ability is compromised. One in four workers exposed to high levels of noise will develop a hearing loss. Professions at risk for hearing loss include firefighters, police officers, factory workers, farmers, construction workers, military personnel, heavy industry workers, musicians and entertainment industry professionals.

Routinely taking two simple precautions can help minimize the impact of noise on your hearing. Wear custom hearing protection when mowing, hunting, attending concerts and the speedway or in any other setting you know is noisy. A variety of filters are available in custom hearing protection so that you can still hear conversations but are protected against the most damaging noise levels. Most audiologists offer custom hearing protection, such as for hunters or musicians, as well as other custom fit ear level devices. earplugs |

volume | Turn down the volume of everything. Have you ever turned up the volume on the TV, radio or an iPod in order to hear over the noise of the mower or the hair dryer? Most people have. Prolonged exposure to unsafe levels of noise can injure the hearing mechanism. It is never too late to form habits that will help maintain your ability to hear.

DaNGerously louD recreatioNal actiVities that caN cause heariNG loss n n


n n n

n n n

video arcades (110 db) firecrackers (125-155 db at a distance of 10 feet) live music concerts (120 db and above) gunshots (150-167 db) Movie theaters (118 db) Health clubs and aerobic studios (120 db) Sporting events (127 db) Motorboats (85-115 db) Motorcycles (95-120 db)

Š iSTockpHoTo.coM / JAn pAul ScHrAgE

SiX cluES you nEEd To HAvE your HEAring cHEckEd

health and wellness

are those cricKets iN there? The American Tinnitus Association estimates tinnitus affects about 50 million Americans. Of those, 12 million have symptoms severe enough that they seek medical attention, and 2 million cannot function normally on a day-to-day basis. symptoms | Patients often describe tinnitus as a buzzing, ringing, white noise, “crickets” or a roaring sound. It is caused by damage to the nerve cells within the inner ear. This damage can occur from exposure to excessively loud sounds throughout your lifespan, diabetes or medications that damage the ear. Tinnitus can also be caused by something as simple as impacted ear wax. when to seek treatment | If tinnitus is affecting your quality of life by reducing your sleep, affecting your performance at work, or making tasks in your everyday life less enjoyable, you should seek help.

i’m so diZZy!

“Be a good listener. Your ears will never get you in trouble.”

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© iSTockpHoTo.coM / libby cHApMAn

– fraNK tyGer

dizziness and vertigo are especially common in older adults. in fact, 50 percent of people over age 70 experience a problem called benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. bppv is a mechanical issue in the inner ear that can be related to a number of troubling symptoms including vertigo/ dizziness, imbalance and an increased risk of falling. A thorough assessment from an audiologist who specializes in vestibular audiology can determine the cause of vertigo and appropriate treatment.


health and wellness

rEconnEcT WiTH lifE

hearing aids iMAginE A HEAring Aid THAT TEllS you WHEn iT’S TiME To cHAngE THE bATTEriES, HElpS connEcT you To oTHEr WirElESS dEvicES likE your cEll pHonE, or EvEn AlloWS you To “rEcovEr” SoundS you HAvEn’T HEArd for yEArS.

online resources American Academy of Audiology American Speechlanguage-Hearing Association better Hearing institute American Tinnitus Association Hearing loss Association of America

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vestibular disorders Association


Thanks to a revolution in digital technology, this and much more is possible today. Many of our patients now wear tiny, cosmetically appealing hearing aids that help make the most of their hearing. Some of the most popular technological advances include hearing aids that: n connect the wearer to cell phones and other digital devices. Using secure Bluetooth connectivity, the patient can wear a wireless device around the neck that communicates with the hearing instrument and their cell phone. An added bonus is that the patient hears the conversation in both ears, improving the ability to understand conversations. Plus, this entire system is hands-free, a benefit for anyone concerned about cell phone safety while driving. n “recover” sounds that previously could not be heard. This technology takes high-frequency sounds, compresses and shifts them to a frequency the patient can hear. Amazingly, this can be done without distortion. This technology helps many patients rediscover sounds they have been missing and improves speech clarity.

n “Zoom” in on sounds for better hearing, especially in noisy environments. This technology allows

the hearing aid wearer to choose which direction to focus their hearing on. Zoom technology can be very helpful in the car, for example, allowing you to concentrate on sounds coming from right or left, front or back. n help with tinnitus (ringing in the ears). Optional listening programs on

advanced hearing aids can generate and deliver relaxing background sounds that can distract and/or mask tinnitus while continuing to stimulate the auditory system. n assist patients in maintaining their hearing aids. Some digital hearing aids include programs that tell the wearer when to change batteries, or which hearing program they are using.

All these advances are the result of digital technology, but it’s your audiologist who can help you sort through the options that make the most sense for you. By Tim Steele, ph.d., f.A.A.A. dr. Steele is vice president of Associated Audiologists, inc.

health and wellness

A noT-So-nEW cAncEr THErApy SHoWS SuccESS for MAny pATiEnTS


Š iSTockpHoTo.coM / kirill klEykov

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by dr. Jeanne drisko

health and wellness


VitaMin C 25-fold higher than concentrations achieved from the same oral dose. But it’s not a standalone treatment. The protocol is most effective when used in conjunction with chemotherapy or radiation and the support of the patient’s oncologist. For that reason, we only provide the protocol to medical professionals. safe and effective The most frequent question we hear is, Will it work for my cancer? We’ve had success with ovarian, lung, brain and other cancers. Doctors can’t predict with total accuracy how different tumor types will respond to the therapy. But a positive PET scan often indicates a positive response to the therapy. Cancer takes a toll on the body. Conventional cancer treatments of radiation and chemotherapy can be just as rough. But no side effects or contraindications have been reported with ascorbic acid infusions. Testing for G6PD deficiency, an inherited condition, is critical. G6PD – or glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase – helps red blood cells function normally. If

Jeanne A. Drisko, MD, is the director of the Program in Integrative Medicine at the University of Kansas Medical Center

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Vitamin C administered intravenously isn’t a new cancer-fighting therapy. You’ll find many scientific papers that support high-dosage IVC as an effective treatment for killing cancer cells while leaving normal cells unharmed. But before you start popping more supplements, you should know that vitamin C, also known as ascorbate or ascorbic acid, doesn’t have the same effect in your body when consumed orally as when taken intravenously. Take a vitamin C tablet, you get an essential nutrient and antioxidant. Any excess not absorbed by the body is quickly eliminated through urine. Put the vitamin directly into the blood and it raises blood levels of vitamin C to a far higher range than could ever be reached with oral supplementation. Concentrations of this magnitude transform the ascorbate into a prooxidant that acts like a drug by generating hydrogen peroxide. This powerful oxidant preferentially kills cancer cells while leaving normal cells unharmed. A 10 gram dose of vitamin C given intravenously produces bloodstream concentrations more than


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Put the vitamin directly into the blood and it raises blood levels of vitamin C to a far higher range than could ever be reached with oral supplementation.

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This powerful oxidant


preferentially kills cancer cells while leaving normal cells unharmed.

freQuency Patients should approach IVC therapy as a commitment. One infusion will not eradicate cancer. The recommended schedule is two infusions a week, although some patients may need three. Initially, the dosage is low as the body adjusts, then increased to therapeutic levels. If initial infusions prove to be beneficial, patients should plan to maintain the schedule for at least one year. ongoing research The University of Kansas is one of only a handful of institutions who’ve taken ascorbic acid research to the next level – studying its impact on animals. A team of basic researchers under the direction of former NIH scientist, Qi Chen, PhD, devotes each day to ascorbic acid research with the intent of finding a cure for cancer. It’s a collaborative effort with KU’s Cancer Center and benefits from the guidance of director Roy Jensen, MD. The Program in Integrative Medicine requires all faculty members and fellows to actively participate in research. One

current study addresses the safety and effectiveness of IVC when combined with chemotherapy in the treatment of pancreatic cancer. Another study focuses on dosage, which sounds simple, but actually covers everything from drug absorption, distribution, and elimination by the body to how rapidly and for how long the drug appears at the tumor location. in the spotlight “The war on cancer is a dismal failure,” says actress and author Suzanne Somers. “If this were a military project, the people in charge would be fired.” Somers didn’t pull any punches when she released her best-selling book Knockout last fall. In the book she took a critical view of conventional cancer proponents with a collection of interviews from leading doctors who have developed and now apply natural cancer therapies to patients, producing outstanding results. The book boasts a wealth of resources where you can find more information about natural cancer treatments and the clinics that offer them. KU’s Program in Integrative Medicine is listed in the book as one of those clinics. resources Visit or call 913-588-6208 for more information about vitamin C infusions for cancer. It’s still unclear how large a role intravenous vitamin C will play in curing cancer. But to-date the program’s doctors are impressed with its performance as an effective, safe and complementary therapy when used in conjunction with conventional cancer treatments.

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / conSTAnT gArdEnEr

it’s missing in the body, the introduction of intravenous vitamin C could cause the red blood cells to break apart. IVC is considered an experimental therapy. It does not have FDA approval, which may cause some oncologists to back away. Patients should read research articles on the program’s Web site ( first before rejecting the protocol. Research underscores both the efficacy and safety of intravenous vitamin C therapies.

Get Out and Take the Lead! Don’t let cosmetic concerns keep you out of the race

A seemingly minor imperfection can do more than hurt your self-esteem — sometimes it can interfere with the way you want to live your life. When that happens, it isn’t minor at all, is it? The plastic and cosmetic specialists at South Kansas City Surgicenter understand you want to live your life, not hide from it. From correcting blemishes to the surgical removal of excess fat to reconstructive surgery, our elite surgeons are equipped with the most advanced technology and training in the area to perform …

SKCS Plastic and Cosmetic Surgeons

• Breast Augmentation • Breast Reductions • Breast Reconstruction • Abdominoplasty • Liposuction We treat you like family, so you can run with confidence.

1010 Carondelet Drive, Suite 401 Kansas City, MO 64114 816.943.8004 Joseph R. Barnthouse, M.D.

Quinn Plastic Surgery Center 6920 W. 121st Street Overland Park, KS 66209 913.492.3443 John M. Quinn, M.D.

Visit our Web site for a complete listing of specialists.

913.901.9000 | 10730 Nall Avenue | Suite 100 | Overland Park, KS 66211

Help find a cure for cystic fibrosis

Gala at the glen to benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

This Wild West fandango will feature music, dancing, gaming and a live auction – come raise a ruckus and join in the search for a cure for Cystic Fibrosis.

June 5, 2010 For event tickets, e-mail

Š / sascha Burkard

at Shadow Glen Golf Club, Olathe, Kansas

complementary health

thE EssEntial forMs of

inTiMAcy royAlS broAdcASTEr ryAn lEfEbvrE SHArES HiS STrugglE WiTH dEprESSion

– And HiS prEScripTion for rEgAining inTiMAcy in your lifE

by Jeffrey flanagan

oN auGust 7, 2005, royals teleVisioN BroaDcaster ryaN lefeBVre hit Bottom.

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© iSTockpHoTo.coM / dny59

That evening, after what many of us would have considered a perfectly splendid day spent cooking out and boating on a lake with close friends, Ryan finally lost his grip on life. The demons of depression that he had been fighting for several months – perhaps most of his life – finally overwhelmed him.


complementary health

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After his friends had left and driven back to their homes, Ryan stepped back into his empty house and almost instantly fell into a panic. To his horror, he had never felt so completely alone. He was terrified. And the demons of depression were now feeding frantically off his fears. He had encountered these demons in the past, and even fought them off before, albeit with mild success. Not this time. This time they had him. He was surrounded. Instinctively, he retreated to the one place he thought he might find refuge – his bedroom closet. It was there, with all the lights out in his house, where he crawled into a corner. He sat crouched, with his head bouncing softly off his knees. He trembled. He sobbed uncontrollably. He felt lifeless. Hours went past. He couldn’t stop the tears. This was it, he finally concluded. This was the end. His confused and bewildered state of mind began to work out a plan for the only sure-fire way to end this agony for good.


Fortunately, Ryan Lefebvre didn’t take that final, drastic measure that night. And amazingly, perhaps because of the sheer physical toll it takes on the human body to shake and weep for so long, he fell asleep that night. The next morning, after a desperation phone call to his mother, Ryan took his first official step toward recovery. His mother made him promise that the second he hung up the phone, he would immediately make an appointment with a therapist – not the next day, not the next week, that very second. Ryan kept that promise and met with a licensed therapist that afternoon. It was through that therapy session with Dale Williamson that the Ryan Lefebvre Rescue Plan was launched. Through therapy, then through medication (Xanex to control anxiety/

panic attacks, and the anti-depressant Lexapro to restore the chemical balance in his brain), and eventually through some self-discovery on the origins of his Major Depressive Disorder that dated to his childhood, Ryan eventually has learned to manage his depression. It is important to note that Ryan refers to his recovery as “managing his depression.” “There is no cure,” Ryan says. “But there is recovery and there is a way to manage depression. Your brain is like any other organ that can be infected. It’s like a person diagnosed with diabetes. That person can take insulin to manage the diabetes but that doesn’t give that person a license to sit on the couch and eat M&Ms all day. “Like diabetes, depression is something you live with and you have to readjust your lifestyle. You have to recognize what your triggers are and how to avoid them.” sharing his story Today, Ryan, who recently turned 39, feels a sense of rebirth. He has regained balance. But it was an excruciatingly painful and long journey to get here. It was several months after his diagnosis before he even felt partially recovered. It is a journey that Ryan and I chronicled in a book released last fall by Ascend Books called “The Shame of Me.” The title alludes to the shame that prevents many people from even admitting they have such a “weakness” as depression. It is that shame that Ryan, too, had to overcome to seek help. The book, Ryan hopes, will inspire others, especially men, to find the courage to seek help. Since his diagnosis in 2005, Ryan has become a major advocate of spreading the word that Major Depressive Disorder is, without question, treatable. He has studied the subject relentlessly. And when he discusses the subject and his experiences, the statistics surrounding

“One out of three people will suffer from some form of mental illness in their lives. One out of three. But only 15 percent will do something about it, such as seeking professional help. And what’s remarkable is that most studies will show that if you take action and seek help, there will be an 80 percent recovery rate.” – kAnSAS ciTy royAlS broAdcASTEr ryan lefebvre

complementary health

herBal toNics to treat milD DepressioN A combination of herbs are usually more effective and preferred for treatment of depression. The tonics are prepared with special consideration to neutralizing the side effects caused by one and with consideration to the specific situation of the individual who is taking it.

boil two cups of water with one teaspoon each of rosemary and sage. Steep for five minutes, strain and drink daily.

clove tea crush cloves and add to sage, camomile or peppermint tea and a dash of ginseng powder to lift mild depression.

gentian root tea Steep ½ ounce each of finely chopped poplar bark and gentian root in two pints of water for fifteen minutes. boil and add ½ ounce each of agrimony and centaury. Simmer for

depression roll off his tongue as effortlessly as do the RBI and ERA stats he passes along while broadcasting a Royals game. “One out of three people will suffer from some form of mental illness in their lives,” Ryan says. “One out of three. But only 15 percent will do something about it, such as seeking professional help. And what’s remarkable about that is that most studies will show that if you take action and seek help there will be an 80 percent recovery rate. “Not a cure but recovery to the point of managing it and then leading a healthy life.” By far, men are the worst culprits when it comes to admitting they have a problem – the “shame” factor seems to play a bigger role with men. “Women suffer from depression at twice the rate as men do,” Ryan says.

10 minutes, cool, and strain. you can add honey for sweetener if you desire. Take three or four tablespoons before meals.

antidepressant tincture 1 teaspoon tincture of Saint-John’s-wort leaf, ½ teaspoon tinctures of licorice root, ginseng root, lemon balm leaf and ashwaganda leaf (if available). combine ingredients (if you do not or cannot drink alcohol, buy glycerites instead of tinctures). Take 1 dropperful 3 times a day.

“But I truly believe that women report depression at more than twice the rate men do. Women are more likely to seek help. Women are more comfortable with admitting they might have a problem. “They are simply wired differently than men when it comes to dealing with their emotions. “Men are far more likely to keep their emotions or feelings of depression bottled up. Men are for more likely to self-medicate with whatever form it takes for them. There is no comparison at all regarding how much more men are likely to be labeled alcoholics or workaholics. Men are more likely to turn to drugs or gambling or commit a violent act or even commit suicide.” Ryan knew first-hand the benefits, and drawbacks, of self-medicating. As a student at the University of Minnesota, and then as young broadcaster for the

Minnesota Twins, Ryan relied heavily on alcohol to numb his deep-rooted issues of abandonment as a child – discovery issues he made years later during therapy. His reliance on alcohol led to some unseemly behavior, nearly costing him his career. In 1998, he made the decision that he had taken his last drink. “But the problem is that sobriety meant no more self-medication,” Ryan notes. “Everybody applauds you for making a commendable decision to quit drinking and straighten out your life. But what you don’t realize at the time is that these doubts and fears and issues you have in life that had been numbed by the alcohol, are no longer being numbed. “Those issues are still there. The beast is still there and it wants its medication.” That beast finally escaped from its cage on the night of Aug. 7, 2005.

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© iSTockpHoTo.coM / TATiAnA bElovA

Here are some herbal tonics used for depression. As always, consult a doctor before starting on any herbal therapy. because the herbs may interact with prescription medicines, check with your doctor before starting on any herb if you are currently taking any prescription medications.

rosemary-sage tea


p.i.e.s. – four kinds of intimacy But through medication, therapy, support from his friends and family and an understanding of how to manage his depression, Ryan today feels fortunate that he can share his story with others. He also developed his own roadmap to wellness. As he began to recover, he was determined to seek a more wellrounded existence, with more intimate experiences in all facets of his life. And as he began to research the true origins and meanings of the word “intimacy,” he kept coming back to one simple definition: To be known. “Sometimes people sort of have a simplistic view of what intimacy is,” Ryan says. “Sometimes they tend to only view the word in terms of sexual intimacy, which is certainly one significant part of intimacy. But there needs to be a level of intimacy in all parts of our lives. “What I discovered from my own experience is that there are four essential forms of intimacy – physical, intellectual, emotional and spiritual. And I also determined that each form of intimacy needs to be nourished equally, or at least as best we can. The acronym became P.I.E.S. And we all need to balance our P.I.E.S., sort of the way an Italian chef might balance four pizza pies at once.” physical intimacy comes in many forms, from a firm and genuine handshake, to couples cuddling, to parents holding hands with their children, to a quick and simple hug. Turning away from this form of intimacy can be unhealthy, Ryan believes.

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intellectual intimacy comes from


the desire to connect on a certain intellectual level with other people. We all have different interests but there is a basic human need to feel intellectually validated by connecting mentally with someone else.

emotional intimacy, Ryan notes, is perhaps where men seem to fail most. “I believe our bodies are designed to experience and express emotions,” he says. “There’s a reason that you tend to feel so much better after venting or having a good cry. Your body is releasing, to some degree, potentially toxic elements. It’s also why a simple good belly laugh makes you feel good. “Being able to feel comfortable enough with someone to experience emotional intimacy is not only healthy, I think it’s necessary. I don’t think men are brought up to feel comfortable with certain types of emotional intimacy.” spiritual intimacy can be

misconstrued. Ryan, who is of the Christian faith, notes that spiritual intimacy and religious intimacy are not necessarily the same. “It’s important to have a level of intimate relationship with whatever you believe is your spiritual origin or destination,” he says. “It’s not

about what religion you are or what faith you are or about what denomination you are. It is about your spiritual awareness and intimacy that ultimately provides you with peace.” Nourishing all four aspects of P.I.E.S., or balancing them, is essential to wellness. “If you deprive one, you end up overloading another,” Ryan says. “This is what turns some of us into workaholics or alcoholics and so forth. It is not easy, but in the end, it is about striving to reach a balance. And it’s about monitoring our lives enough to be aware that there might be an imbalance. “The main thing for me is the realization that therapy and medication and support from friends and family are essential to anyone suffering from depression. That leads to recovery. But depression is ongoing so you have to manage it. And if you do, you can lead a happy, healthy life.”

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / Aldo Murillo

complementary health



Leawood South Country Club • May 12 -16 Call American Heart Association • 913.652.1915 • Proceeds benefit Go Red for Women

health and wellness

Fourth in a series on brain health

Finding your brain’s

Balance What you need to know about GABA, the brain’s peacemaker By Kerry

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GABA, or gamma-aminobutyric acid, controls your brain’s rhythmic theta waves, ensuring physical and mental balance. Dr. Ray Sahelian, author of Mind Boosters, explains, “GABA is the most important and widespread inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain. Excitation in the brain must be balanced with inhibition. Too much excitation can lead to restlessness, irritability, insomnia and even seizures. GABA is able to induce relaxation, analgesia and sleep.” The calming or “peacemaker” chemical in the brain, GABA also largely influences the health of other neurotransmitters. A GABA deficiency can directly impact a person’s ability to handle daily or long-term stress. Because those with GABA deficiency often experience anxiety, irritability, headaches, hypertension, heart disorders and seizures, it is imperative to maintain a healthy GABA balance. What is GABA? GABA is one of the primary inhibitory neurotransmitters of the brain, occurring in 30-40 percent of all synapses. It is most highly concentrated in the substantia nigra (a brain structure located in the midbrain that plays an important role in reward, addiction and movement) and globus pallidus nuclei of the basal

ganglia, followed by the hypothalamus (crucial in linking the nervous system to the endocrine system), the periaqueductal grey matter, and the hippocampus (important in long-term memory and spatial navigation). GABA controls the body’s regulation of muscle tone. In spastic diplegia (a form of Cerebral palsy), some nerves become incapable of absorbing GABA, causing the muscles signaled by those nerves to become rigid – a condition known as hypertonia. Essentially, there is an abnormal increase in the tightness of muscle tone, and a reduced ability of the muscle to stretch. Though, chemically, GABA is an amino acid, this term would inaccurately assume that GABA is a member of the amino acids. Because it is instead a neurotransmitter, members of the scientific and medical communities are careful to avoid this reference. GABA balances the brain by inhibiting over-excitation. It contributes to motor control, vision, and many other cortical functions. Anxiety is the most frequently diagnosed psychiatric disorder associated with low GABA levels, affecting 10-30 percent of people. For several years, diazepam (Valium) was the most frequently prescribed drug in North America.

Conditions/ Diseases of GABA deficiency n tinnitus n anxiety n hypertension n chronic


n cystitis n irritable

bowel and other gastro-intestinal disorders n PMS n seizures n stroke n bipolar disorder

Hospital benefit event St. Joseph Medical Center Foundation is hosting a Healthy Food & Good Wine event Saturday, May 8, 1000 Carondelet Drive, Kansas City, Mo. The event begins at 6 p.m. with a cocktail reception and Iron Chef competition, followed by a farmers market from 7 to 10 p.m. Proceeds benefit a surgical microscope for Neuro-Interventions.

Used for almost 80 percent of all surgeries, treating the patient with exact caution is most important. This new microscope is vital in the diagnosis and determining the right patient treatment when one needs high-end care.

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© / AM29

“The new microscope will magnify and illuminate to enable the surgeon to look at arteries and veins, see blood vessels and blood flow more clearly,” says Dr. Norman Bamber, a neurological surgeon.


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multi-modal treatments for gaba deficiency diet n n n n n n n n n n n n


symptoms of gaba deficiency Almost 50 percent of the population is defined by the neurotransmitter that calms us down by keeping all of our brainwaves in balance. Guardians, as noted by The Edge Effect author Eric Braverman, are dependable individuals who can be counted on to be where they should and do what they say. They are characterized by equanimity in the face of chaos. Setting goals and organizing plans and schedules to achieve them are first nature for GABA-dominant guardians. When there is a GABA deficiency, brainwaves lose rhythm with each other. Rhythm disturbances show up in more ways than any other neurotransmitter deficiency and anxiety ensues. n physical – carbohydrate cravings, flushing, butterflies in stomach, lump in throat, ringing in ears, muscle tension, trembling, twitching, numbness or tingling in fingers, hyperventilation, blurred vision, abnormal sense of smell, abnormal odors, unusual allergies, night sweats, tachycardia, chest pain n psychological – restlessness, feelings of dread, emotional immaturity, short temper, phobias n memory – poor verbal memory n attention – impulsive, disorganized Although there are many options for


improving mood and reducing anxiety levels, the safest of these is to eat foods that increase the production of GABA and other key neurotransmitters. In the case of GABA, this means eating more complex carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates increase glutamine, an amino acid that precedes GABA in the synthetic pathway. And according to a 2008 article posted on Supplement News, the highest concentrations of naturally occurring GABA are found in fish – particularly mackerel – and wheat bran. While one might quickly lose interest in eating large amounts of fish, wheat bran can be blended into an assortment of soups, salads, cereals and smoothies. Also consider supplementing with L-theanine. This naturally occurring amino acid found in green tea is involved in the formation of GABA and has few, if any, side effects. L-theanine can induce relaxation without causing drowsiness, while also increasing mental clarity. gaba and disease Several drugs that increase the level of GABA in the brain are used to treat epilepsy and to calm the trembling of people suffering from Huntington’s disease. HGH (human growth hormone) contributes significantly to interrupted sleep cycles and sleep disruptions.

vitamins/supplements n n n n n n n n n

inositol thiamine riboflavin Branched chain amino acids GaBa Glycine Kava Valerian root passion flower

lifestyle recommendations n n n n

relaxation non-scheduled activities delegate tasks aerobic exercise

hormones n n n

progesterone cortisol pregnenolone

medications n n n n n n

several used to treat anxiety hypertension muscle pain muscle spasm and twitching neuropathic pain seizures

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / liv friiS-lArSEn

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caffeine-free herb teas banana rice bran citrus fruit whole grains brewer’s yeast brown rice broccoli molasses liver/organ meats halibut lentils baked or mashed potatoes tree nuts

“Charles had a devastating diagnosis,” says his wife, Cheryl. “We were searching for anything that we could do.”

“Here I am, almost five years past my diagnosis, and my cancer remains stable.” CHARLES DITTMER, GREENWOOD, MISSOURI Charles was diagnosed with Stage IV inoperable lung cancer, and both oncologists that he consulted said he could expect to live about two more years. That was nearly five years ago. “I have noticed a difference when I leave there,” he says. “I kind of just lumber in for an infusion, but when I leave, I sort of bounce out of there.” In addition to the infusions, Charles is a committed organic gardener, and thanks to the nutritional support from Dr. Drisko and the Program in Integrative Medicine, he considers his hobby a vital part of his treatment.

A different approach to cancer treatment – infused with hope At the KU Program in Integrative Medicine, we provide a healing environment for our patients using intravenous infusions of Vitamin C along with a regimen of supplements to improve your health and help fight your cancer. We are a nationally recognized integrative medicine facility, focused on patient care, research and education. During our program, you will receive regular blood testing, a personalized plan to maximize your nutrition, increased vitamin and mineral levels, as well as the Vitamin C infusions. The best part is that with every visit, you’ll meet with a doctor who will work closely with you and give you the support you need. ABOUT THE VITAMIN C INFUSIONS Research shows that intravenous Vitamin C at high doses – along with chemotherapy or radiation – kills cancer cells in the early stages of cancer. For those in the later stages of cancer, the infusions may improve your quality of life. The Vitamin C infusions are a supplementary treatment to traditional cancer fighting treatments and surgery. We work cooperatively with your oncologist, aligning your infusions with your chemotherapy.

We’re here to help you. Call us today to schedule an appointment to learn more.


health and wellness ciNNamoN Wheat BraN paNcaKes ingredients ¾ cup wheat flour n ¾ cup unbleached flour n ¾ cup wheat bran, unprocessed n 2 tablespoons granulated sugar n ½ tablespoon baking powder n ½ tablespoon baking soda



n n n n n

directions prepare skillet with cooking spray and heat on medium until hot. in a mixing bowl, combine flour, wheat bran, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. in another mixing bowl, combine egg whites,

2 teaspoons cinnamon ¼ teaspoon salt 2 egg whites, whipped ¼ cup applesauce, room temperature 1 ½ cup buttermilk, room temperature 1 teaspoon vanilla

applesauce, buttermilk, and vanilla. Mix wet ingredients with dry ingredients just until moistened. ladle in the batter, using 2 or more tablespoons per cake. cook for 2 minutes, then flip carefully and cook for 2 minutes more. repeat with remaining batter.

BaKeD macKerel maiNe style n n n n n

1 bay leaf ¾ cup vinegar ½ teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon parsley, chopped ¼ teaspoon thyme, minced

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According to an Italian study, HGH levels were significantly increased by GABA administration. The study found this to have a positive effect on functions such as sleep cycles, average body temperatures and pituitary gland action. Higher levels of HGH are caused by the invigorating effect GABA has on the anterior pituitary – the main endocrine gland responsible for the body’s hormonal functions. GABA levels are low in people with disorders such as


directions preheat oven to 400°. Make a sauce by cooking the onion, carrot, green pepper, vinegar, salt, parsley, thyme and bay leaf for 20 minutes over low heat. remove the bay leaf and pour sauce over fish. bake for 30-40 minutes.

multiple sclerosis, another movement disorder. People struggling with anxiety, depression, alcoholism and bipolar disorders also have low GABA levels. Diet, prolonged stress and genetics are closely associated with GABA deficiencies. gaba and autism Some experts suggest autism is the result of an imbalance of the excitatory glutamatergic and inhibitory GABAergic pathways, resulting in overstimulation in the brain and an inability to endure excessive stimuli from natural and environmental sources. Studies have demonstrated altered levels and distribution of GABA and GABA receptors in peripheral blood and plasma, as well as in the brain. Autism researcher Margaret PericakVance, with Duke University’s Center for Human Genetics, asserts the GABA system acts as an information filter

to prevent the nerves from becoming overstimulated. Research indicates this filtering process is compromised in many autistic children. Impairment of the GABA system can overwhelm the brain with sensory information, leading to many of the behavior traits associated with autism. In a double-blind study, significant improvements in language and socialization were observed in 90 percent of children within the autism spectrum using L-Carnosine, as opposed to children taking a placebo. L-Carnosine increases activity in the frontal areas of the brain and promotes the production of GABA. L-Carnosine is a naturally occurring amino acid found in high concentrations in muscle, heart and brain tissues. It is a highly effective anti-aging nutrient that possesses powerful antioxidant and neurotransmitter properties, in addition to protecting the body’s cells from the damaging effects of oxidation.

froM Top: © iSTockpHoTo.coM / robyn MAckEnZiE, MArk EvAnS

ingredients 2 mackerel, about 2 pounds each n 1 large onion finely chopped n 1 carrot, diced fine n ½ green pepper, chopped n

There is no guessing when it comes to success.

We encourage you to learn as much as possible, so you can be confident about the decisions you make. We are the region’s most experienced in helping infertile couples become parents. We’re also the region’s leading innovator with a full range of treatment options ranging from minimal therapies to high-tech procedures. So learn the facts, check the stats. Visit or call (913) 894-2323.

Celeste Brabec, M.D. • Ryan Riggs, M.D.


Š / Stephen Strathdee

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active living

THE SciEncE of

CyCling TEcHnology AdvAncES HAvE drAMATicAlly cHAngEd THiS populAr AcTiviTy by daniel farrell, md

for MoST of uS, groWing up bicycling WAS THE firST SEnSE of frEEdoM or fEEling of AdvEnTurE And EXplorATion of your nEigHborHood. Riding that bicycle with the wind in your hair and the sun on your face gave you a sense of independence and openness. Over the past couple of decades cycling has changed enormously. The aerodynamics and materials that bicycles are made of has dramatically improved the efficiency and comfort of cycling. With carbon fiber or titanium producing lighter and stronger bicycles with very comfortable rides. Sport science or exercise science has also contributed greatly to cycling. Greg LeMond changed the way we look at cycling by winning the Tour de France in a close time trial. He made up a minute of time overall in the time trail with the aid of “aerobars.� This changed our way of thinking about cycling to a more scientific way. Along with this science of material and design came better new training principles and tools that have had a huge effect on the way cyclists race and train throughout the season.

the bike fit

gps mapping your ride or helping you find your way home is also available with this computer-aided training era. elevations, distance, combined with measurable power data generated on the bike now enable anyone to study and analyze your training or your fitness goals. cycling now can function as a fitness laboratory to be analyzed by a coach anywhere in the country via the internet.

power meters power is defined as the amount of work done during a given period of time, measured in watts. computers placed on the bicycle can measure speed, cadence, heart rate and now wattage. the amount of power you are producing can be measured accurately during your bicycle ride. over a given distance or time you can measure your maximum power produce and use this as a goal or base line for training. With this information, evaluations and training programs can be designed to train various energy systems. all this information can be used to accurately train and recover from the exercise.

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Dr. pruitt describes the bike fit as a marriage between the bike and the rider. some cyclists spend more time with their bikes than with their spouse! Bio-mechanically this relationship has been studied scientifically and is based on sound descriptions. Basic adjustments of a properly sized bicycle follows specific objectives understood by people trained in the bike fit. the average cyclist might spend hours a week in the same position generating literally millions of pedal strokes. With the wrong placement of the bicycle cleat or handle bar width, overuse injuries occur.


active living tips for safe bicycling

n n n n n





n n n n n

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n n

Make sure your bike is in good working order learn to use all your gears use a helmet plan out your route be sure you can manage the ride or route Even paved roads can be laden with potholes, cracked and broken pavement, debris, dangerous drain grates, and uneven surfaces or gaps Avoid areas where there is no bike lane or shoulder, where traffic is heavy and moving fast, too many trucks and buses, no space for bicyclists on bridges and poorly lit roadways Watch for slippery surfaces when wet (bridge decks), bumpy or angled railroad tracks unpaved roads or dirt trails offer their own challenges including steep inclines and declines, rough terrain, unexpected turns and paths that end abruptly Try to avoid areas that include difficult or dangerous intersections Wear pads cover any exposed skin with protective clothing ride in a straight line (don’t weave) Signal turns  ride with (not against) traffic  use lights, if riding at night  Wear reflective materials and bright clothing  Have necessary first aid supplies available

cycling injuries Relatively few injuries occur on a well-fitted cycle. The beauty of cycling is that it is not a high impact activity or even a full weight bearing activity. This enables one to train hard for hours, day after day with low risk of injury. This is the reason that cyclists have ranked the best VO2 max’s, (maximal oxygen consumption) of all athletes across the board. Including runners and swimmers, cyclists can train large muscle groups for longer periods of time with less chance of injury. knee inJuries Occasionally the cyclist knees do become injured. It is a prominent working joint for the bicyclist. Some of the most common knee injuries are related to overuse syndromes or “too much too soon” problems. Examples are: patellar tendinits, iliotibial band friction syndrome, plica syndrome, pes anserine bursitis or tendonitis and hamstring tendonitis. All of these are related to an inflammatory process that will respond well to icing and anti-inflammatory medications. And be careful with medications; evaluation and monitoring by a sports medicine physician is important. hand inJuries A common nerve injury cyclist encounter is carpal tunnel syndrome or the cyclist’s palsey. Pressure on the carpal tunnel by the handlebars causes irritation and swelling in this region causing numbness and tingle of the ring and small finger. Other nerve compression syndromes are also possible with prolonged hand pressure from cycling. “Skier’s thumb” or ulnar collateral ligament injury of the thumb occurs from a fall is common among cyclists. The main ligament stabilizing the thumb is torn in this injury from a force bending the thumb during the fall. Surgical intervention soon after the injury is necessary for a successful outcome. shoulder inJuries The unfortunate fall from the bicycle can produce two common injuries about the shoulder. A fractured clavicle (collarbone) is one of the most common cycling injuries. A shoulder separation occurs when the joint between the shoulder blade and the clavicle becomes separated. Treatment for these injuries usually requires evaluation by your physician. Occasionally these injuries require surgical reduction of the separation or repair of the fracture. cervical and lumber spine pain Typically this comes from de-conditioned or a sudden increase in duration of cycling. Core conditioning and bike fit are important factors in improving these conditions. Athletic trainers and physical therapist knowledgeable in cycling and core conditioning can be helpful.

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / yEnWEn lu


treating road rash

Cycling benefits almost every body system by enhancing cardiovascular fitness, musculoskeletal efficiency, central nervous system awareness and mental flexibility. Riding requires aerobic and anaerobic efforts, muscular strength and stamina, mental attentiveness and perception and for many, gratification and the good kind of pain Unfortunately, as with anything good in life, there is the inevitable evil. These “bad pain” cycling injuries can be classified as both acute and chronic. The majority of acute injuries are likely under-reported and don’t require professional care. Of the 85 million cyclists in the U.S., 540,000 visit the emergency department annually. Of these, 67,000 present with head injuries and 600 die. Other common areas of acute injury include the clavicle/collar bone, shoulders and wrist. Serious injuries to the spine, chest, abdomen and pelvis also occur but are much less common than head injuries or minor orthopedic injuries. When a serious injury is suspected, limit moving the victim (i.e. protect the spine) while making sure the scene is as safe as possible. Call for help (because you always take your phone and ID) and leave the cyclist’s helmet alone – unless it is compromising his ability to breathe. If you are certified in first aid or CPR training, you would also support the victim’s airway and stabilize any areas of active bleeding. Most acute cycling injuries are accompanied by abrasions and the inevitable road rash that occurs as one donates skin to the pavement. Abrasions and road rash should be treated in a similar manner as one would manage a burn. Beware of foreign material, puncture wounds and lacerations that may accompany this lovely malady. Wash the area with soap and water. Peroxide

also works to clear away areas of dried, caked on blood, but this should only be during the initial cleaning of the wound area. If you find deep, tracking puncture wounds or suspect an embedded foreign body, you should have your wound evaluated by a professional ASAP. You may also need your tetanus status updated if you have not received this within the last five years. Chronic cycling injuries are usually overuse-type injuries or an exacerbation of a pre-existing condition. Common areas of chronic, “bad pain” include neck, knee, groin, hands and back. The seriousness of these conditions range from transient to long-term, and therapies can consist of relatively minor solutions such as changing your saddle height to requiring surgery. There is much more to know about cycling safety, but the premise is simple: be aware, be prepared and wear a helmet. Remember, long-term health depends on short-term responsibility.

By Hugh Ryan, MD

ideally, irrigate the area with a nontoxic surfactant with a bit of pressure (use a syringe if possible). the area must be completely clean. if necessary, use a clean gauze to gently scrub the area. Do not scrub vigorously, as this can cause more tissue damage. use a semipermeable dressing to cover the wound and attach the dressing to dry healthy skin with adhesive tape. the dressing should be changed every few days. Keep the wound moist until it has healed. a moist environment promotes healing, improves tissue formation and protects the area from infection. look for any deep cuts that may require stitches to heal properly. cuts that continue to bleed after 15 minutes of direct pressure, or cuts that extend deep into the skin and have edges that pull apart, may require stitches. if you are unsure if you need stitches, see a physician.

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© iSTockpHoTo.coM / boJAn fATur

good pain and bad pain

Because abrasions can easily become infected, you should clean the area thoroughly and remove any dirt and debris.


Š / Carmen Martinez Banus

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Dr. Eberhart-Phillips is the Kansas State Health Officer and Director of Health in the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. E-mail: jeberhart-phillips@

healthy eating

STArT young To prEvEnT

osteoporosis TEEnAgErS nEEd To cHAngE THEir HAbiTS noW To kEEp THiS diSEASE AT bAy

by Jason eberhart-phillips, md

the seeds of osteoporosis Osteoporosis, a potentially crippling disease characterized by low bone density and increased bone fragility, usually doesn’t show up until middle age. But the seeds of this pernicious disease are sown during adolescence, when the skeleton is most active in

absorbing dietary calcium and building up nearly all the bone mass that will carry the teenager throughout life. For lifelong bone health, it is essential for teenagers – particularly girls – to consume enough calcium while they are young to achieve their maximum bone density. By the mid-20s the critical window period for calcium absorption starts to close, as a woman’s ability to stockpile this mineral in her bones is greatly reduced. Today only 14 percent of teenage girls in America are thought to have enough calcium in their diets to avoid osteoporosis by the time they reach menopause in their 50s. Only one girl in seven now consumes enough dairy products and other foods rich in calcium to attain an adequate bone mass that will prevent brittle bones and disabling fractures when they enter the middle and later years of life. Calcium intake among teens used to be much higher than it is today. As recently as the late 1970s, teens aged 12 to 19 years reported drinking nearly twice as much milk as they drank soda. Now the picture is almost reversed, with milk consumption among teens down 40 percent, while soda consumption has doubled. Soft drinks are problematic not

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© iSTockpHoTo.coM / rEd_frog

Chances are the teenagers you know aren’t thinking much about the far-off future when they will be middle-aged adults. Their attention is probably focused more on the latest hip-hop music than on the prevention of the hip fractures 30 or 40 years from now. It’s up to parents and other grownups to think ahead for them, making sure that young people have the best opportunities for good health all through their adult lives. That’s why so many parents, teachers and health professionals are more concerned than ever about what kids are eating today, and how common deficiencies in their diets might be predisposing them to serious health problems in adulthood. A serious dietary risk confronting teens deserves more attention: It’s how kids’ diets – particularly the beverages they are drinking – are putting the future of their bones at risk.


only because they have displaced calciumrich milk as a source of refreshment. The caffeine that most sodas contain also increases the excretion of calcium in the urine, further reducing the calcium available for bone development. time to act It’s time now for parents and policy makers alike to find ways to limit excessive soda consumption among teens and encourage increased intake of low-fat milk and other healthy sources of calcium. Parents can do a lot at home to nudge their teenagers to eat better by restricting sodas and making sure that healthier alternatives are available. Another way to increase exposure to healthy foods is to set higher nutritional standards for the foods sold in school vending machines and stores.


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The Kansas legislature has been considering a new statute that would do just that. Senate Bill 499 would require every school district in the state to follow the same “exemplary” guidelines for the sale of so-called “competitive foods” in schools that a minority of Kansas districts now follow voluntarily. These guidelines restrict beverages sold in schools to water, low-fat milk and 100 percent juice. Parents, educators and health professionals are rallying around the bill as a first step in assuring not only healthy bone development, but also better oral health, reduced obesity and improved academic performance. Most teenagers can’t imagine being middle-aged, let alone having brittle bones. But unless we who understand the risks act now to improve their diets, that’s what they can expect.

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / JuSTin HorrockS

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turning off the tics THE quiET TruTH AbouT diET And Tic diSordErS by kristin

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This is the second in a series of articles on the impact of diet on behavior. This article focuses on diet as it relates to tic disorders and Tourette Syndrome. what are tics? Tics are uncontrollable, rapid, sudden, repetitive actions of the face, body or voice. Some tics are barely noticeable, while others can’t be missed. Motor tics are most often displayed in the face, but can also present themselves in other parts of the body including the neck, shoulders, limbs and trunk. Facial tics can include movements like eye blinking, nose twitching and grimacing. Body tics can include things like shoulder shrugging, scratching or stomping. Vocal tics are involuntary noises and can include throat clearing, grunting, shouting and barking. Coprolalia is another type of vocal tic in which socially inappropriate words or phrases (including outbursts of curse words, insults and other obscenities) are used involuntarily. This type of tic is widely known because of its attention-drawing nature, but it is actually a rather uncommon diagnosis. tic disorders The presence of motor tics is most often associated with Tourette Syndrome (TS). But motor tics don’t always indicate TS. Transient tic disorders are the most common, affecting up to 10 percent of school-aged children. This is a temporary disorder in which the tics will eventually

go away on their own. Chronic tic disorders affect less than 1 percent of children. Chronic tics are present for longer than a year and do not go away without treatment. According to the National Tourette Syndrome Association, TS is a neurological disorder defined by “multiple motor and vocal tics lasting for more than one year.” For a proper diagnosis of TS, one must display motor tics as well as vocal tics. The motor and vocal tics typically occur simultaneously, but not always. TS is generally diagnosed in childhood, and symptoms often lessen – and in rare cases subside altogether – in adulthood. what causes tics? Not a lot is known about the cause of tics. Some say traumatic life situations and stress can be initiators. Tics have also been associated with certain medications and other medical conditions. Studies suggest that TS in particular is hereditary. The gene for TS is dominant, and about 50 percent of carriers will pass it on to their offspring, ultimately affecting males three to four times more than females. One potential cause of tics that is often overlooked is diet. Corn, wheat, cane sugar, dairy and intestinal yeast are surfacing as the most common dietary triggers. This “theory” as some would have it, is not widely supported by the medical community, but is gaining popularity among parents. Many families have done their own experimentation and

bookshelf n






An Extraordinary Power to Heal by bruce Semon, Md, phd and lori kornblum Chemical Sensitivity by William rea, Md Extraordinary Foods for the Everyday Kitchen by lori kornblum and bruce Semon, Md, phd Feast without Yeast: Four Stages to Better Health by bruce Semon, Md, phd and lori kornblum The Missing Diagnosis by c. orian Truss, Md Natural Treatments for Tics & Tourette’s: A Patient and Family Guide by Sheila J. rogers

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One potential cause of tics that is often overlooked is diet. Corn, wheat, cane sugar, dairy and intestinal yeast are surfacing as the most common dietary

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Š / Porcorex



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treatment options Tic disorders are challenging to treat, in that the disorders present differently in every person. Unfortunately, trial and error are often the bumpy route to success until the right combinations of medications, therapies and/or diet is found. When diagnosed with a tic disorder – if severe enough – the traditional course of treatment includes a variety of medications, which often bring along their own undesirable side effects. Counseling, behavioral modification techniques and biofeedback are also used. However, non-traditional treatments are becoming more and more popular as parents seek treatment options without the use of medications. Diet modification is rising up as a viable alternative. Many parents report that their children’s tics have significantly improved – and even ceased – because of changes in diet and adherence to vitamin regimens. (See “One Family’s Story,” next page). While one family’s story doesn’t equate to a scientific study, you can’t argue with success. When changing the diet instantly results in the reduction of an uncontrollable, unwanted behavior, that’s more than just coincidence. Parents are determined to get the word out about what they are learning at home. In the case of diet and tic disorders, families are banding together and sharing their stories, determined to help others in the same situation.


reaching out One person determined to help others is former Kansas City Royals ballplayer Jim Eisenreich. He was diagnosed with TS in the 1980s in the midst of a promising major league baseball career. Diet modification has been a part of his treatment success.

“I found that I’m sensitive with some foods,” he says. “I had the opportunity to work with nutrition specialists and received information from different sources to find out what helped me.” Because of his experience with TS in the public eye, Eisenreich created the Jim Eisenreich Foundation, a local organization that helps children with TS achieve personal success. Public awareness is one of the organization’s key objectives. “I always include diet in my presentations. Whenever I mention my own success with trials in diet modification, the parents seem encouraged and want to know more. They are looking for answers.” Answers. Not an easy thing to come by in the diagnosis and treatment of tic disorders, but not impossible either. Eisenreich offers this advice to parents who are evaluating treatment options for their children. “The most important thing to do is to have an open mind and do as much research as you can. Keep your options open, as everyone is different. Always consider diet and exercise in the treatment plan. Medicines are appropriate, but there are other alternatives to help as well.”

local resources Jim Eisenreich foundation po box 953 blue Springs, Mo 64013 800-442-8624 Joshua center for neurological disorders 7611 State line road, Suite 142 kansas city, Mo 64114 816-763-7605 national Tourette Syndrome Association kansas city chapter 913-768-6134

online resources The Association for comprehensive neuroTherapy Tourette Syndrome online Tourette’s Syndrome: Stop your child’s facial, vocal and Motor Tics naturally

© iSTockpHoTo.coM / JAroSlAW WoJcik

have found that diet plays a significant role in the presence of tics.

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one family’s story

I left feeling relieved and reassured, but my nursing background kept me thinking about it. Based on what the doctor told me, I realized that Caleb had also experienced a throat-clearing tic a while back. Sure enough, they must come and go and change, just like he said. A few months later, the tic changed again. But this time it was much more noticeable. This one was a motor tic, where he moved his jaw, shoulder and neck. It was much more disruptive to his life. He hated it, and it was bothering me, too. One day, he came to me crying, telling me how badly it hurt and that he couldn’t stop. Mothers don’t ignore their child’s plea for help, even if the doctor says there is nothing you can do. I was going to have to look into it further. Straight to the Web I went to do some research. And based on what I was reading, the Internet almost immediately became my enemy. Everything I found pointed to Tourette Syndrome, and I couldn’t bear the thought of it. So I put my Mom up to the task, knowing she had Caleb’s health in her best interest as well. Also a nurse, I knew I could trust her findings. She found some information that changed his life at This Web site was put together by a parent who told the story of his own son’s diagnosis and treatment of tics. Amazingly, this man’s story was very similar to mine. His findings came mostly from talking to other parents. What he discovered was

that his son’s tics were a result of something in his diet. His body was reacting to the intake of certain foods, specifically dairy, which he constantly craved. Hmm. Caleb craved dairy, too. What could it hurt to take him off dairy and see what happened? I kept open communication with Caleb through the whole process. I didn’t want him to feel like I was forcing him to do anything, and thought he would be more apt to stick to a new diet if he was ready and willing. So I waited. And one day he finally came to me, ready to do whatever necessary to stop the tics. At this point he was exhibiting tics three and four times a minute. Because he was ready, I decided to go cold turkey. I took him off all dairy and whey products. And within three days, the tics were completely gone. Caleb is almost 10 years old, and we’ve learned a lot on this journey. We’ve learned that his tics wax and wane. We’ve learned that some of his other triggers are chocolate, lack of sleep and overall poor diet. We’ve learned that some of his other tics have been eye blinking and shoulder shrugging. We’ve also learned that in addition to the dietary restrictions, Caleb’s tics respond well to a true magnesium supplement. Yes, we’ve learned a lot about the impact of diet on tics. But more than anything, we’ve learned how important it is to share our story for the benefit of others. Paying it forward just might change a life forever. It did for Caleb.

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It was an unusually quiet ride in the car as our family of four traveled to Southern California. The hubby and I were enjoying an uninterrupted conversation in the front seat, a welcomed rarity with a 7-year-old boy and a 5-year-old girl. The kids were each enjoying their own movie in the backseat, complete with headphones. Sigh. As we traveled along, the unusual peace allowed us to hear things that would typically go unnoticed. Some noise – coming from the backseat – was routinely interrupting our conversation. Sigh. “Do you hear that?” I said to my husband. “Why does Caleb keep sighing?” We listened carefully for a while and noticed that these weren’t your average sighs. They were deep, rhythmic, repetitive. Sigh. “Caleb, why do you keep sighing?” I asked. “I don’t know, Mom. I can’t help it.” Throughout the trip, we noticed that the sighing was getting worse, especially at night. Caleb began to get anxiety about it, which seemed to fuel the intensity and frequency. I was getting really worried and decided I would take him to the pediatrician as soon as we got home. But, the doctor was not concerned in the least. “The sighs are just a tic, and tics are more common in boys. In fact, 20-40 percent of school-aged boys have them. They come and go, and he’ll probably get a different one. There is nothing you can do about it. Just don’t draw attention to it.”

Neonatal intensive care nurse and Kansas City native Chris Clark shares about her son’s journey with tics.


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Let spring lift your spirits and renew your zest for healthy living