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VENTURA COUNTY

CONEJO VALLEY

WEST SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

SEPTEMBER 2012

www.yhcmagazine.com

FAMILY ISSUE

WHY AN ORGANIC MATTRESS? SNOOZZZ! GMO: YOUR VOTE COUNTS! LONG TERM CARE NEEDS ADCARE PLUS: MEETING YOUR TEEN’S HEALTHCARE NEEDS MEET WAYNE LEVINE OF BETTERMEN COACHING OVERCOMING ADDICTION WHAT’S IN YOUR DENTAL FILLINGS? PLANNING A SPECIAL NEEDS TRUST EAT LIKE A CAVEMAN? YES! MORE!

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yhcMAGAZINE.COM | 4


Contents 06/ PUBLISHER’S LETTER MILESTONES & MEMORIES

FAMILY ISSUE

22/

september 2012

14/

09/ FYI HEALTH TIPS & TIDBITS

28/ NATURAL APPROACH PROGRESS WITH ADDICTIONS— THEY CAN BE OVERCOME

By Dr. Sharon Norling

“GM…crops do not eliminate insecticide use— they merely change the way in which insecticides are used. The plant itself becomes an insecticide.”

18/

34/ HEALTHY KIDS ADCARE PLUS HELPS TEENS TRANSITION FROM CHILDHOOD TO YOUNG ADULTHOOD

By Alicia Doyle

36/ SMILES YOUR MOUTH—YOUR HEALTH

By Dr. Blanche D. Grube

38/ RECIPE ALMOND COCONUT BANANA BREAD

features

14/ SPECIAL HEALTH BULLETIN “Home sings me of sweet dreams…” By Kathleen Ahern, MS, CAPS

10/ CONNECTION BE THE MAN YOU WANT TO BE IN YOUR RELATIONSHIPS AND YOUR LIFE

18/ HEALTH VIEW 1

Planning For Life’s Transitions: Long Term Care Needs By Carol Knowles

By Alicia Doyle

22/ HEALTH VIEW 2

Why Label Genetically Engineered Foods? By Susan Stewart, RN

24/ HEALTH VIEW 3

Protecting People in Need through Special Needs Trusts By Maria Capritto

32/ ENVIRONMENT

Why Organic Mattresses? By Alicia Doyle

4 | yhcMAGAZINE.COM

SEPTEMBER 2012


Our mission is to help ensure safety and independence for those who are experiencing age related changes, disease, or disability with our licensed physical therapists and home modification specialists.

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CentersForHealing.net SEPTEMBER 2012

yhcMAGAZINE.COM | 5


puBlisher’s letter

september 2012

Milestones Memories IN AUGUST FRIENDS AND FAMILY gathered together to celebrate my father’s 90th birthday. it was wonderful to honor my father in this manner and yet with all of the hugs, kisses and smiles, he felt rather overwhelmed by it all. this sweet, kind and wonderful man just didn’t want us to make a fuss over him. he never liked to draw attention to himself, yet there he was, in the midst of so much admiration—not for the number of years he survived, but for the number of heartbeats he shared with so many. he is also blessed to have lived long enough to see his four great-great grandchildren! talk about a milestone! no one ever expects to last that long, although we tend to joke about living to 100, fulfilling dreams of skydiving or climbing the highest mountain. But the reality looms and we never know how much time we have. in this issue we explore the aspects of caring for our children and senior parents alike; part one of a special series about the different aspects of long-term care; the ongoing issues connected with GMo and our food, and the importance of surrounding our environment with organic products. in this month’s Connection, we feature Wayne levine, the director of BetterMen Coaching. it is human nature to have so many regrets at the end of our lives and forget about the accomplishments celebrated during our journeys. My point is this— celebrate all that you are and all that you have, all that you give and all that you receive. We are here to experience the joys of living life with no regrets, to learn from our mistakes, forgive ourselves and others, and live with purpose and meaning. it is the pure joy of life that brings one to a full and complete journey, especially when the experiences are emphasized with the celebrations of family milestones. so to my father, lt. Col. david W. starr—dad, i salute you for the sacrifices you made for our country and i love you for being the best dad in the world. You have been my inspiration and have given so much to the starr family. May all of you celebrate the milestones and memories of family—they are so precious.

ann K. Castle

Founder & Publisher

With peace, love, Blessings and Gratitude,

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SEPTEMBER 2012


R

ecently opened in Westlake Village, Joe & Clara, is a Pilates Inspired Health Club designed to cater to a discerning clientele who is looking for a more personalized approach to group fitness training. The Club is equipped to offer over twenty semi-private training sessions throughout the morning, midday and evening.

Semi-private training is a great option when you want to enjoy more personalized attention but spend less money than private sessions. All Pilates classes have a maximum of six participants and run a half-hour long making it gentler for those who have not been as active in recent years to start working out again. The shorter classes also mean it’s simpler to fit a workout into any busy schedule. For optimal results two to three visits a week are encouraged and taking two sessions back to back will ensure reaching your fitness goals even faster. What kind of results can you expect? Pilates isn’t just about looking good it’s also about improving your quality of life. One of the first benefits most people experience is a better night’s sleep. After about a month clients start noticing that those typical aches and pains that come with aging start to go away.

About three months in you can expect your balance to be restored and your coordination and range of motion to have significantly improved giving you an edge on the green, the court and simply doing the things you love with a renewed sense of ease, energy and vitality.

Set in a spacious and beautifully designed facility Joe & Clara Pilates Inspired Health Club features state of the art Peak Pilates® equipment including the Reformer, Chair, Tower, Jump Board and Mat as well as True® cardio equipment. Combined with other props and apparatus the Club offers several different classes to lean out and lengthen your body while restoring it to its fullest potential—what is weak becomes strong and what is tight becomes flexible.

Pilates is a powerful, dynamic method of movement created by Joseph H. Pilates in the early 1900s. He called his method “Contrology” referencing the mind’s ability to control the body. He met his future wife, Clara, on a ship crossing the Atlantic to New York and together they opened the original Pilates Studio in Manhattan. Joe & Clara Pilates Inspired Health Club practices Classical Pilates and is named in homage to them both.

Visit joeandclara.com to read the numerous testimonials and call 805.496.2929 to set up a complimentary orientation.

2282 Townsgate Road I Suite 1 I Westlake Village I 91361 PMS 433

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ADVERTORIAL


FLOSS MYTH BUSTED! FOUNDER & PUBLISHER ANN K. CASTLE COPY EDITOR ANN K. CASTLE JAN TUCKER, MBA ACCOUNTING DONNA BRYANT ADVERTISING MARIAN GREEN MARIAN@YHCMAGAZINE.COM 818.943.0751 LAURA MUSTACCHIO LAURAM@YHCMAGAZINE.COM 805.558.9817 CONTRIBUTING WRITERS KATHLEEN AHERN; MARIA CAPRITTO; ALICIA DOYLE; BLANCHE GRUBE, DDS; CAROL KNOWLES; SHARON NORLING, MD; SUSAN STEWART, RN

i aM often asKed, “if you floss your teeth, doesn’t the plaque get shoved down into the gums?” or better yet, “if i use the same floss for all my teeth and i have plaque, isn’t it bad to spread the plaque all over my mouth?”

COVERAGE AREA INCLUDES MONTHLY TO VENTURA COUNTY, WEST SAN FERNANDO VALLEY, AND THE CONEJO VALLEY; AGOURA HILLS, CALABASAS, CAMARILLO, ENCINO, MOORPARK, NEWBURY PARK, NORTHRIDGE, OAK PARK, OXNARD, SIMI VALLEY, TARZANA, THOUSAND OAKS, VENTURA, WESTLAKE VILLAGE, WEST HILLS, WOODLAND HILLS FOR ALL INQUIRIES, CONTACT ANN K. CASTLE AT ANN@YHCMAGAZINE.COM OR 805.341.2972 WWW.YHCMAGAZINE.COM

i know everyone hates to floss, but having a medical excuse not to floss is just not right and i am here to debunk those myths. the purpose of flossing is to disrupt the biofilm of bacteria known as plaque. if flossing is done once daily, bacteria do not have a chance to build an empire in your mouth. By disrupting the matrix of bacteria you have done your job already. don’t worry about pushing bacteria into the gums—they are already there. the point is not to eliminate bacteria but to prevent their colonization. You can use a single floss each time, and if you are unsure how to use it ask your dentist! We are here to help you smile ;)

MEDICAL ADVISORY BOARD SHELLEY CHILTON, CSA, LRE, LVN HOSPICE, HOME HEALTH, SKILLED NURSING FACILITY ADMINISTRATOR ACCESS TLC HEALTH CARE, TLC HOME HOSPICE, ACCESS TLC HOME HEALTH CARE KATIE GREELEY, DC UNITED FAMILY CHIROPRACTIC SPECIALIZING IN PEDIATRIC CHIROPRACTIC CARE STEVEN GREENMAN, DDS SPECIALIZING IN ADVANCED COSMETIC, IMPLANT & SEDATION DENTISTRY, SNORING & SLEEP APNEA HILDA MALDONADO, MD SPECIALIZING IN FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE, ANTI-AGING MEDICINE & HORMONE THERAPY SHARON NORLING, MD BOARD CERTIFIED OB/GYN, HOLISTIC/INTEGRATIVE MEDICINE, MEDICAL ACUPUNCTURE, NUTRITION & FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE

e-mail your questions to info@westlakevillageCAdentist.com

DENISE NOYER-EREZ, LAC, FABORM LICENSED ACUPUNCTURIST, SPECIALIZING IN WOMEN’S HEALTH DANIEL SLATON, DVM WESTLAKE VILLAGE ANIMAL HOSPITAL ALON STEINBERG, MD, FACC BOARD CERTIFIED CARDIOLOGIST DAVID VILLARREAL, DDS CENTERS FOR HEALING SPECIALIZING IN HOLISTIC DENTISTRY

STEVEN HEVER, DDS www.westlakevillageCadentist.com 860 hampshire road, suite e Westlake village, Ca 91361 805.777.7447

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual writer and not necessarily those of the publishers or management of YHC Magazine. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Publication of the name or photo of any person or organization in YHC Magazine should not be construed as an indication of that person’s expressed opinion. Advertisers and their agencies assume responsibility and liability for the content of their advertisement in YHC Magazine. Photographers whose work is published in any advertising or editorial content within YHC Magazine agree to indemnify and save harmless the publishers from all liability, loss and expense due to a photographer’s failure to gain a model release. YHC Magazine is not responsible for loss of or damage to unsolicited manuscripts, unsolicited artwork, or any other unsolicited material. Unsolicited material will not be returned. YHC Magazine’s liability in the event of an error is limited to a printed correction. YHC Magazine does not assume liability for products or services advertised herein. PRINTED IN U.S.A.


fyi

health tips & tidbits

Special

announCeMent

IN THE PAST, YHC MAGAZINE has Been a proud Media sponsor of the aMeriCan heart assoCiation and has Been looKinG forWard to another suCCessful heart WalK; But soMethinG happened this Year that has strenGthened MY dediCation to aha.

My husband, david Castle is a world-renowned and award-winning singer, songwriter and composer for tv and films. during his illustrious career in music, he had the opportunity to tour with davy Jones, Mickey dolenz, tommy Boyce and Bobby hart. during that tour davy and david became good friends and kept that special friendship over the years. When we received the news that davy passed away suddenly from a heart attack, david was devastated. at that moment he decided to dedicate his new single, I See the Clouds Go By to the memory of davy Jones and to donate a portion of the sales of this single to the aha in davy’s memory. please join us in honoring the memory of so many lives lost to heart disease and stroke and embracing the ones who still are with us and fighting for their lives. YhC Magazine will support team davy Jones at the ventura heart Walk on saturday, october 20th at the Conejo Creek north park. if you wish to be part of team davy Jones, you can register at http://venturaheartwalk.kintera.org. david Castle will be there as a guest artist to perform his single and other original scores and will be delighted to meet all of you! from my heart to yours, i thank you. ann K. Castle

scan to register

SEPTEMBER 2012

yhcMAGAZINE.COM | 9


ConneCtion

Wayne M. Levine, M.A.

WAYNE M. LEVINE, M.A. BETTERMEN COACHING Life Coach/Director

BE THE MAN YOU WANT TO BE IN YOUR RELATIONSHIPS AND YOUR LIFE By Alicia Doyle

10 | yhcMAGAZINE.COM

SEPTEMBER 2012


AS THE DIRECTOR OF BETTERMEN COACHING, WAYNE LEVINE STRIVES TO HELP MEN TO BE THE BEST FATHERS, HUSBANDS AND LEADERS THEY CAN BE. “The purpose of this work is to help men to heal themselves so that they can be the loving husbands their wives want, and the compassionate and present fathers their children need,” said Levine, who leads BetterMen retreats and facilitates several weekly men’s groups. “We work with young men to make them self-sufficient so they can move out of their mother's houses and go into the world as confident young men. The big vision is to see a men's group in every neighborhood in North America.” Levine’s interest in men’s issues began in the early ‘90s with his participation in men’s work activities. “My experiences with men’s groups, as a participant, leader and program developer, taught me to father men and to support them in making difficult and important changes in their lives.” BetterMen Coaching, established in 2001 in Agoura Hills, helps men to get out of the problem and into the solution, he said. “Some forms of therapy can keep men trapped in the problem, talking week after week about the same issues, but doing nothing to cause a change.”

WHEN MEN REALIZE THE POWER

In Levine’s individual and group coaching, “I direct men as quickly as possible to a solution. Then I hold them accountable to the commitments they make toward that solution. In our groups, we all participate in that process. When men realize the power they have to make significant changes in their lives in areas where they had long ago given up hope for change, it strengthens their commitment to this work and allows them to ultimately become that best men, fathers, husbands and leaders can be.” By the time men pay Levine a visit, “they're often desperate, without hope, sad and depressed, angry and seeing few options for themselves, their relationships or their lives,” he said. “What usually happens in our first session is that men

We are taught that we need to be able to do it all ourselves. it doesn't have to be that way. Wayne has

created an environment that allows you to get help, establish lasting friendships, and be a lot of fun at the same time.”

are reconnected to the vision they once had for their lives, and they experience renewed hope for the future. And that's just in the first 50 minutes.”

TOOLS FOR THE MASCULINE Rod Hecker sought help from Levine when he was going through a divorce. “I was also becoming a single father and needed help and support,” said Hecker, who saw Levine for one-on-one coaching and later joined one of his men’s groups. He also attended a weekend retreat. “Wayne helped me get back to living life while still taking care of my responsibilities,” said Hecker. Additionally “I met other guys who were in similar situations. I was able to get advice from men who had been through what I had, develop friendships, and get help to achieve what I wanted.” It is difficult for men to ask for help, Hecker further emphasized. “We are taught that we need to be able to do it all ourselves. It doesn't have to be that way. Wayne has created an environment that allows you to get help, establish lasting friendships, and be a lot of fun at the same time.”

continued >>

SEPTEMBER 2012

yhcMAGAZINE.COM | 11


ConneCtion

After 11 years of all types of self-help courses, camps and programs, Jason Wilburn fell into BetterMen work when he was going through a divorce. “It's designed for men so it's given me something I never really had, tools for the masculine.” BetterMen offers something incredibly unique that really needs to get to the men of the world, so they can be better for the world, Wilburn added. “The men saved my life. And I'm not the only one.” Vincent Maguire was at a transitional phase with a relationship when he met Levine though a local Chamber of Commerce. “I found the groups to be inviting and caring, but at the same time structured and presented in a manner that held me accountable for my actions and I have been growing in a positive direction ever since.” Through BetterMen work “I have been able to deal with situations that come up in my life in a more positive and forward thinking way. I have a group of men that I can call upon to help me when I get stuck,” Maguire said. “I have become much closer with my brother because I have set aside fears. I have gained a better understanding of my father because I was able to set aside some judgments. The journey to where I have come has been spectacular and I look forward to what tomorrow holds for me.” For Bentley Richards, “I was going through a divorce and needed support to get through this challenge.” He has been involved in Levine’s weekly men's group for the past seven years. “I did not

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SEPTEMBER 2012


Wayne M. Levine, M.A.

Common Questions about

Financial Planning

grow up with my father so I spent most of my life not knowing what a true male relationship looks like. Since I joined the men's work I, at age 37, started growing up and becoming a man, for myself, my wife, my children, and ultimately my community. This has been a long journey for me to heal wounds from the past and become the man I am, and Wayne has been a guidepost for me the entire time.” In addition to repairing themselves and their marriages, “men also come here to learn how to be more patient and loving fathers, to find the courage to make career changes, to transition from son to caregiver for their aging and oftentimes demanding parents, and simply to connect with other men to have the camaraderie, support, wisdom, and guidance we all need to be happy, healthy and successful men.”

RELATIONSHIP MANUAL FOR MEN

Levine earned his master’s degree in clinical psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles. He also received a bachelor’s in journalism and graduated Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Southern California. He has been married to his wife, Ria, for almost three decades and is the proud father a of Ph.D. candidate and college junior. “When I returned to school for my masters my intention was to become a marriage and family therapist. But what I learned during my studies altered my course. I found that therapists are taught little to nothing about men or male psychology in these programs,” Levine recalled. In fact, “there was not a single course offered in my program that specifically addressed the needs of men, though nearly every other conceivable population was represented.” The instructors often spoke of underserved populations in terms of mental health, he said. “When I would suggest that it was actually men who were the least served in our communities, I often received incredulous looks. The anger and bias convinced me that my focus on helping men had to take a different form. That's when I decided to change course and to create a men's center where I could coach men and give them the kind of support that I received over the years from men in my life.” Over the years, Levine’s practice has expanded to support couples, young men and families. He is also the author of the best-selling book, “Hold On to Your N.U.T.s—The Relationship Manual for Men.” N.U.T.s stands for non-negotiable, unalterable terms.

What if I’m too busy? Don’t wait until you’re in the midst of a financial crisis before starting a financial plan. The sooner you start, the more options you’ll have, and it is far easier to make small, smart adjustments now than it will be to make major changes later. Is the financial planning process complicated? No matter what type of help you need or how complicated your unique situation, a financial professional will work hard to make the process as easy as possible, and will gladly answer all of your questions. What if my spouse and I disagree? A financial professional will listen to your concerns, identify points of disagreement, and help you find common ground. Am I still in control of my finances? Financial planning professionals make recommendations; you make the decisions. You decide which recommendations to follow, then work with a financial professional to implement them.

“My passion is helping men, just as others have helped me through the years. Like most of the men who come to this work, I can no longer imagine a life without a circle of men. We teach the men who come to us several fundamental truths. One is that we must all learn to trust the men. And I do.”

BETTERMEN COACHING 5030 Chesebro Road, Suite 102 Agoura Hills, CA 91301 For more information call 818-879-1600; visit www.BetterMenCoaching.com; or email info@BetterMenCoaching.com.

DAVID MACHACEK Independent Capital Management 770 Paseo Camarillo, Suite 130 Camarillo, CA 93010 (805) 484-1011 ext. 115 dmachacek@sagepointadvisor.com

securities and investment advisory services offered through sagepoint financial, inc., member finra/sipC and a registered investment advisor. insurance services offered through independent Capital Management, inc. independent Capital Management, inc. is not affiliated with sagepoint financial, inc. and is not registered as a broker-dealer or investment advisor.


speCial health Bulletin

sweet dreams

“home sings me of sweet dreams…” By Kathleen Ahern, MS, CAPS

these are lYriCs froM a Beautiful sonG Written BY Karla Bonoff and also sunG BY Bonnie raitt that refleCt What ManY of us feel aBout our oWn hoMes. it is a fact that most adults prefer to stay in their own homes as they age in place. this phrase describes a growing movement with the goal of helping people stay in their own homes as they age and experience age-related physical, mental and emotional changes.

HOME MODIFICATION

to accomplish this goal certain modifications are often required to allow for a safe and accessible environment. home modification refers to converting or adapting the environment in order to make performing tasks easier, reduce accidents and support independent living. these modifications can be a cost-effective way to reduce health care cost and delay or even prevent institutionalization. the range of home modifications may be as simple as installing a grab bar in a bathroom or as extensive as a complete remodel of an older home. the andrus Gerontology Center at usC reports that more than 60 percent of older adults live in homes more than 20 years old. these homes were built with young families in mind, not those aging and experiencing new limitations. With baby boomers retiring at a rate of about 10,000 a day there is a concern there will not be adequate safe senior housing, assisted living or skilled nursing facilities to meet the need.

WHAT OLDER ADULTS WANT

studies show that most elders want to stay in their own homes, and for many of those, moving is not an option. Based on a recent survey by aarp, 78 percent of those 50- to 64-years-of-age, 89 percent between 65 and 84, and 96 percent of those 85 and older state they would prefer to stay in their current residence and never move.

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SEPTEMBER 2012

APPROXIMATELY 70 PERCENT OF PEOPLE OLDER THAN 65 LIVE IN THEIR OWN HOM.


“

Based on a recent survey by aarp, 78 percent of those 50- to 64years-of-age, 89 percent between 65 and 84, and 96 percent of those 85 and older state they would prefer to stay in their current residence and never move.

it has been reported that as many as one-third of older adults fear being forced into skilled nursing or assisted living facilities as a result of barriers in their home. approximately 70 percent of people older than 65 live in their own home while 20 percent reside in apartments, another 5 percent in congregate housing (boardand-care or assisted living facilities) or have services such as Meals-on-Wheels. the remaining 5 percent are in nursing homes or long-term care facilities.

MAKING HOME LIFE FEASIBLE

the reality is, people are living longer than ever before and the biggest risk to their health, longevity and quality of life is a fall. for some, a fall can result in prolonged hospital stays, loss of functional ability and even death. fall prevention is not a sexy topic but it is very important. physical changes, health conditions and sometimes medications may make falls more likely. the fact is, home modifications can reduce the risk of falls and may lead to a longer, more productive and independent life. assistive devices such as a cane or walker can help with stability, reducing fall risk. other more sophisticated devices include the life alert systems that alert emergency personnel, family and neighbors when the elder or disabled person falls or is in danger. pill dispensers for home use can reduce medication errors, a common problem for those living alone. Computer monitoring systems can help family and healthcare professionals keep track of vital signs, changes that need to be attended, and simply for communicating with family, friends and the outside world. new technology will change the way we care for people who want to or have to stay in their own homes.

ACCESSIBILITY FOR DISABLED CITIZENS

We have come a long way in the past two decades. in 1990 the americans With disabilities act was signed. it is a wideranging civil rights law which prohibits discrimination based on disability. With some exceptions, this law requires public places to be accessible to those with disabilities. now we have to focus on making our homes visitable to all. the term refers to a residence designed in such a way that it can be lived in or visited by those who have trouble with stairs or those who use walkers and wheelchairs. the concept of universal design has been embraced in europe for years. the idea of building homes and public places accessible to all is the core concept. in this country we are just starting to open our eyes to this idea and making more efforts to build for the future.

continued >>

SEPTEMBER 2012

yhcMAGAZINE.COM | 15

“


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speCial health Bulletin

sweet dreams

ron Mace of http://aginginplace.com states, “universal design is the design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptations or specific design.�

INTERIM MODIFICATIONS

universal design is a very exciting concept and will reduce the need for modification after the fact. until then let’s consider some simple, effective and inexpensive safety modifications you can make today. 1. Remove obstacles such as rugs, plant stands, wires, piles of paper and boxes. 2. Install adequate lighting including nightlights, particularly in bedrooms, bathrooms and hallways. Motion-detector lights can be helpful and energy-efficient. 3. Repair loose floorboards and repair or replace old, torn or worn carpet. This can greatly reduce the risk of tripping and falling. 4. Grab bars are the most common modification in the bathroom and can reduce your risk of falling where most falls occur. 5. Raised toilet seats and/or commodes can make it easier to get on and off the toilet. 6. If you live in a two-story home, consider converting a room downstairs to accommodate someone who cannot use the stairs due to injury or age-related changes.

PLAN AHEAD

Metal-Free Dental Implants. FDA approved, high performance, Zirconium Dioxide (ZrO2 ) ceramic implants are now available in the United States by Z-Systems. Swiss quality, stronger than titanium, and biologically compatible, combine for superior esthetics.

Talk to your dentist about Z-Systems Zirconia Implants, or call our USA office toll free (877) 874-9407 for referrals!

(877) 874-9407 16 | yhcMAGAZINE.COM

SEPTEMBER 2012

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in order to meet the demands of what some have termed the silver tsunami, we must take action now. this means taking a look around you, your home, or your parents’ homes and start planning for the future. You may want to start with simple modifications. if you are not sure what your needs are, call a professional trained in home safety modifications. We want people to remain safe and independent in their own environment as long as possible. My final recommendation is to become involved in your local city planning and city council meetings. Cities with active, vocal citizens are making a real difference in their communities. Kathleen Ahern, MS in counseling psychology and a Certified Aging-in-Place specialist is founder and CEO of Liv-Ability Independent Living Consultants, LLC. She can be reached at 800.936.6251 or kathleenahern@liv-ability.com.


SEPTEMBER 2012

yhcMAGAZINE.COM | 17


health vieW 1

Part 1: LTC financial planning basics

planning for life’s transitions:

lonG terM Care needs By Carol Knowles

THE ODDS OF NEEDING HELP WITH LONG TERM CARE AT SOME POINT AFTER AGE 65 IS A WHOPPING 70 PERCENT.

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this is the first of a series of artiCles BY the author on CoMprehensive lonG terM Care, finanCial, and estate planninG. it is an irrefutable fact that when we come into this life, at some point we must move on. When and how each of us will make that final journey though are great unknowns. Many people struggle to cope with that reality. denial and lack of preparation for the inevitable put enormous stress on loved ones and can jeopardize the quality of our end-days and legacy we leave behind. long term care planning is garnering considerable media exposure, yet misconceptions still abound. prevalent fallacies are that this is just about getting older, healthy ancestors assure longevity and a peaceful demise for everyone in the family tree, and Medicare will pay the bills. Here are the facts: • about 40 percent of those currently in a position of need are between the ages of 18 and 64. long term care needs can from injury or illness, as well as aging. • healthy living does not guarantee good health. life-changing medical events seldom come with a forewarning and indiscriminately impact all age groups. • Medicare will only cover about 22 days before cutting off benefits as it was not designed to pay for custodial extended care.

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Cutbacks in Medicare have been proposed to curtail skyrocketing costs and assure the sustainability of that service. additional help from the government is nowhere on the horizon. so-called obamacare is about health insurance, excluding long term care expenses. personal assets must now be transferred at least five years before the onset of a significant change in health in order to shield them from the government seeking to recoup funds spent to help that individual. Coping with long term care situations now can be tough and is about to get much tougher. • a recent nationwide study shows we are living longer, but overall we are not aging well. • the typical duration of need is about three years. if challenges like parkinson’s or alzheimer’s are involved, life’s final chapter can be much longer. • the 2012 national median annual cost of 24/7 skilled nursing facility care exceeds $81,000 for a private room. it was $15,500 in 1980! • Many women face the end of life alone. • 60 percent of nursing home residents in ventura County, Ca never have a visitor, an all-too-common harsh reality across the country. • living longer increases the risk for dementia. • aging populations are a global concern.

continued >>

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health vieW 1

Part 1: LTC financial planning basics

state agencies are sending letters to residents in an effort to motivate them to take this matter seriously, become familiar with relevant insurance products, and take action. Many states are collaborating with select private carriers in a partnership program to encourage action by doubling asset protection when needs extend beyond the life and value of a qualifying policy. the driving force behind public awareness campaigns is the large number of those already challenged who did not (or, in some cases, could not) prepare and have gone on public assistance, as well as the looming, potentially catastrophic financial burden of meeting the needs of baby boomers. unpaid family caregivers will continue to be the largest source of extended care service providers, increasing an astronomical 85 percent from 2000 to 37 million in 2050. parents of baby boomers are, in large numbers, deflecting responsibility for potential needs to their adult children. they have failed to acknowledge that times have changed and changes have come over time. families are smaller, more geographically dispersed. Many households are run by a single adult or both parties are working. Job security and income have diminished. Workrelated stresses have increased. allegiance of domestic partners and parties involved in multiple marriages are often unpredictable in a long-term care situation. Baby boomers are quantified by their age and lifestyle. More are approaching the golden years with gusto — jumping out of planes, traveling, climbing mountains, having cosmetic surgery. the Me Generation isn’t saving ‘for a rainy day’. Many are not inclined to pass their nest egg on to their children. Whereas everyone aspires to enjoy life to its fullest, that attitude is adversely impacting loved ones and the system. addressing long term care needs doesn’t just involve time – it also comes with financial and physical demands. the health of caregivers is compromised by tending an afflicted loved one. Many care providers are trying to be the perfect ‘child’, spouse, parent and employee. some are using savings intended for their children’s education or 401Ks to pay for mom or dad’s needs. they are exhausted and resentful of the burdens they bear. employers are feeling the pinch of that tug of war. the result is a devastating domino effect that in large part can be avoided.

INSURING THE NEED:

our society tends to be cynical about insurance, perceiving it as a necessary evil; however we are relieved when we can divert the cost of our misfortunes to those sources. the odds of our house burning down or being in an automobile accident are very low. the odds of needing help with long term care at some point after age 65 is a whopping 70 percent. Getting coverage to pay for an accident retroactively is unrealistic – so is trying to get a policy after an irreversible change in health. the best time to act is when we are well. survivors of some major medical issues are insurable. if one spouse cannot get insurance, a policy for the other can help protect joint savings and property. More people in their 40’s and early 50’s are doing long term care planning. their wake-up call is witnessing the end days of relatives and others around them, as well as concerns about the solvency of government programs and pension plans. age and health are key components to eligibility for a plan and its cost.

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Hilda Maldonado, M.D. Regenerative & Anti Aging Medicine

TO MOVE FORWARD: • Consult with a reputable specialist representing multiple carriers • Consider only highly rated, reputable companies • Learn about the features unique to each carrier’s product(s) • Include inflation protection to assure the policy’s value increases as costs for care rise in the future • Pick a financially sustainable plan

• Over ten years of experience using bio-identical hormone replacement therapy • Specialized testing for metabolic factors • Hormone balancing • Nutritional supplementation • Lifestyle changes (individualized diet and exercise)

THE PLAN:

protecting dignity and independence not burdening loved ones, shielding assets, and facilitating quality care in an extended care situation are priceless. these can, however, be jeopardized if such needs have to be met with inadequate savings, by family or friends, or through the MediCal/Medicaid public assistance program. the only other option is insurance unless a person is already disabled, a ward of the state, in the midst of a major medical crisis, struggling from paycheck to paycheck, over age 85, or is a mega-millionaire. Multi-purpose products can finance future needs and/or leave a legacy for beneficiaries. the most comprehensive and viable protection is long term care insurance. it is an essential facet of efficient estate and financial planning. next month in part 2 of this series, the author will address financial planning.

• Stress management • Education • Judicious use of medications as required Dr. Hilda Maldonado is board certified in Internal Medicine and additionally she is a diplomate of the American Academy of Regenerative and Anti-Aging Medicine.

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health vieW 2

genetically engineered foods

GenetiCallY enGineered or Modified (Ge or GM) food is a plant or animal product that has had its dna artificially manipulated in a laboratory with the genes of other species such as bacteria, viruses, plants or animals. this radical technology is not found in nature and has been called crude and imprecise. it is capable of creating unexpected toxins or allergens. Many are familiar with the acronym GMo, which stands for genetically modified organism. technically, a GMo is a constituent of genetically modified foods—so Ge or GM foods are made from GMos, but often the labels are being used interchangeably.

POLLS CONSISTENTLY SHOW THAT MORE THAN 90 PERCENT OF THE U.S. POPULATION WANTS GE FOODS TO BE LABELED.

GM FOODS POSE SERIOUS HEALTH RISKS

the american academy of environmental Medicine (aaeM) is a non-profit society of medical clinicians whose mission is to promote optimal health through prevention, and safe and effective treatment of the causes of illness. the aaeM states that GM foods pose serious health risks which include negative impacts on immune function, reproductive, metabolic, physiologic and genetic health.

U.S. CONSUMERS CAN’T IDENTIFY GM FOODS

Why label GenetiCallY enGineered foods By Susan Stewart, RN

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50 countries in the world—including the european union, Japan, China, australia, new Zealand, south Korea and india—require labeling of Ge foods. labeling is not currently required in the u.s. due to the influence of powerful biotech and chemical government lobbyists as well as the government’s revolving door with this industry. GMo labeling is a non-partisan issue. We all eat and we all have a right to know what is in our food. We cannot truly be healthy unless we are empowered to make informed choices about what we eat and feed our families. polls consistently show that more than 90 percent of the u.s. population wants Ge foods to be labeled.

BITTER RIVALRY CONCERNING GM FOODS

the biotech and chemical corporations producing these products claim Ge foods are perfectly safe and that the scientific evidence is on their side—but this is not so. Many scientists have exposed the problems with this technology—including the fda’s own scientists, only to have their research shut down, their work destroyed, their voices silenced and their reputations vilified by members and supporters of this industry.


over 75 percent of all GM crops are engineered to tolerate being sprayed with herbicides.

a new, 123-page damning report supports this position. GMO Myths and Truths: An evidence-based examination of the claims made for the safety and efficacy of genetically modified crops, is written by Genetic engineer Michael antoniou, phd, Claire robinson, editor of www.gmwatch.org, and John fagan, phd, founder and chief scientific officer of one of the world’s first GMo testing and certification companies. the report contains more than 600 citations, many of them from peerreviewed scientific literature and the rest from reports by scientists, physicians, government bodies, industry and the media. the full report is available at bit.ly/WllGMoMyths. dr. fagan has said, “over 75 percent of all GM crops are engineered to tolerate being sprayed with herbicides. this has led to the spread of herbicide-resistant superweeds and has resulted in massively increased exposure of farmers and communities to these toxic chemicals. epidemiological studies suggest a link between herbicide use and birth defects and cancer.” further, explained fagan, “these findings fundamentally challenge the utility and safety of GM crops, but the biotech industry uses its influence to block research by independent scientists and uses its powerful [public relations] machine to discredit independent scientists whose findings challenge this approach.”

SOME EXCERPTS FROM THE REPORT “On-farm and environmental impacts of GM crops are not limited to the effects of the GM crop itself—for example, GM genes can spread to nonGM and organic crops.” “GM crop technology is already failing under the onslaught of developments such as the spread of herbicide-resistant superweeds and pests resistant to the Bt toxin engineered into crops. These failures mean increasing costs to farmers and harm to the environment.” “Roundup used on GM herbicide-tolerant crops is not environmentally safe. It persists in the environment and has toxic effects on wildlife as well as humans.” “GM…crops do not eliminate insecticide use—they merely change the way in which insecticides are used. The plant itself becomes an insecticide.” according to the biotech and chemical industry public relations campaign, labeling would serve only to stir up fear and confusion among consumers. in other words, ‘the general public is not intelligent enough to make decisions about what to feed themselves and their children.” those in the industry believe they know what’s best for us and they should be the ones to decide what we eat.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

We all need to inform ourselves about this critically important issue—we have a right to know what is in our food. visit www.carighttoknow.org for more information and to become involved in educating others. proposition 37 which requires labeling of genetically engineered foods by 2014 will be on the ballot this coming november—be sure to vote Yes!

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health vieW 3

special needs trusts

protecting people in need through

speCial needs trusts By Maria Capritto

A GIFT CARD THAT CAN BE USED TO BUY FOOD OR SHELTER IS CONSIDERED THE SAME AS CASH AND SHOULD NOT BE GIVEN TO THE BENEFICIARY.

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the limitation on resources for ssi eligibility is $2,000 in countable resources for a single person and $3,000 in countable resources for a couple.

WHAT HAPPENS TO A CHILD OR ADULT WITH DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES WHEN THEIR PARENTS PASS AWAY? how do you keep them from being taken advantage of or from falling through the cracks? thankfully, there are special needs trusts, which improve the survivor’s quality of life without disqualifying them from being eligible to receive public benefits.  Generally, there are two types of special needs trusts: a self-settled trust and a third-party trust. these trust funds are held by a trustee for the benefit of the beneficiary (the individual with the disability). a self-settled trust is created with the assets of a person with disabilities that resulted from an inheritance or proceeds from a lawsuit (usually personal injury or malpractice). after the trust beneficiary’s death, the trust has a provision directing the trustee to pay back any funds the state Medicaid program paid on behalf of the beneficiary. a third-party special needs trust is established by someone other than the person with disabilities, such as parents or grandparents. the third-party special needs trust is funded with assets that never belonged to the person with disabilities and typically does not contain language requiring a payback to the state Medicaid program at the beneficiary’s death.

the trustee of a special needs trust is required to balance between making distributions that do not violate the income and resource rules of supplemental security income and Medi-Cal and providing goods and services to the trust beneficiary for their improved quality of life. ssi is a social security program that pays benefits to disabled adults and children who have limited income and resources as well as people 65 and older without disabilities who meet the financial limits. Medi-Cal is California’s Medicaid program.

DISTINGUISHING BETWEEN INCOME AND RESOURCES once a special needs trust is created, the trustee must become familiar with the ssi rules on resources and income. there is a simple way to distinguish between income and resources. Money is considered income in the month it was received. if any portion of the income is not spent during that month, the unused income on the first day of the next month becomes a resource.

REGULATIONS FOR RESOURCES the limitation on resources for ssi eligibility is $2,000 in countable resources for a single person and $3,000 in countable resources for a couple. some assets are not treated as available or countable resources and are exempt from the ssi and Medi-Cal resource limits. these assets include the beneficiary’s home, one automobile, household goods (furniture, furnishings, household equipment, household supplies), life insurance with a cash surrender value if its face value is less than $1,500, all term life insurance policies, a burial plot, or any other burial space of any value, and an irrevocable burial fund worth up to $1,500. the trustee should not purchase items considered countable resources that will cause the beneficiary to exceed the value of the resource limitations.

REGULATIONS FOR INCOME the ssi income rules are much more complicated. ssi treats distributions from the trust as follows:

• • • •

Direct income to the beneficiary. Not income to the beneficiary. In-kind income to the beneficiary. In-kind support and maintenance to the beneficiary.

DIRECT INCOME if the trustee distributes cash from the special needs trust to an ssi benefits recipient, it is treated as direct income by the social security administration. the trustee should not provide money directly to the beneficiary, nor should the trustee reimburse the beneficiary for money he or she spent, because after the first $20, each dollar given will be considered income and will reduce the beneficiary’s ssi payment dollar for dollar.

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health vieW 3

special needs trusts

for example, the trustee should pay the department store directly for the purchase of a television (an exempt asset) and have it delivered directly to the beneficiary. a gift card that can be used to buy food or shelter is considered the same as cash and should not be given to the beneficiary.

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in-kind income occurs when the trustee gives the beneficiary something other than money. in most cases, the trustee can provide inkind income to the beneficiary without any impact on public benefits because the value of the non-cash item is not counted as income if the item is retained into the following month. examples of such items are the purchase of household items such as household supplies, books, dishes, towels, furniture or recreational equipment.

IN-KIND SUPPORT AND MAINTENANCE

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the trustee must also be concerned with in-kind support and maintenance. in-kind support and maintenance is any direct payment by the trustee for necessities of life such as food or shelter for the beneficiary. ssi benefits are intended to pay for the beneficiary’s food and shelter. therefore, if a beneficiary receives food and shelter as a result of payments by the trustee, it is considered to be inkind support and maintenance. receipt of in-kind support and maintenance is treated as income and reduces the beneficiary’s ssi payments. the trustee may pay for a vacation for the beneficiary and the beneficiary will maintain his or her benefits. a vacation is considered a temporary absence from a permanent living arrangement and the social security administration does not count in-kind support and maintenance received during their temporary absence. however, the trustee should not provide spending cash to the beneficiary while on vacation because any amount distributed in excess of $20 will reduce the beneficiary’s benefits dollar for dollar. as you can see from this brief discussion of special needs trusts, the rules concerning eligibility for public benefits are complex. the trustee should consult with an estate planning professional who is familiar with the administration of special needs trusts in order to avoid running afoul of the public benefit rules while ensuring they provide the most benefits allowed to the trust beneficiary.

Consider It Done!

Maria Capritto is a senior associate attorney at Arnold LaRochelle Mathews Van Conas & Zirbel, LLP, in Oxnard. Contact Capritto at 805.988.9886 or mcapritto@atozlaw.com.

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natural approaCh

addiction

EACH YEAR ABUSE OF ILLICIT DRUGS AND ALCOHOL CONTRIBUTES TO THE DEATH OF MORE THAN 100,000 IN THE U.S.

progress With

addiCtions they Can be overcome By Dr. Sharon Norling

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ALCOHOL AND DRUG (PRESCRIBED AND ILLEGAL) ADDICTION

each year abuse of illicit drugs and alcohol contributes to the death of more than 100,000 in the u.s. the consequences of drug and alcohol abuse—medical, social, economic and criminal—are vast and varied and affect people of all ages. the vast majority of addicts (96.5 percent) start their first substance use before age 21 when the brain is still developing. unfortunately, 95.6 cents of every dollar spent by federal, state and local governments on risky substance use and addiction pay for the consequences; only 1.9 cents are spent for prevention and treatment according to the national Center on addiction and substance abuse at Columbia university this year. prescription medications are increasingly being abused or used for non-medical purposes. this practice can not only be addictive, but in some cases lethal. a recent study in florida published in 2008 found three times as many people were killed by legal drugs as by cocaine, heroin and all methamphetamines combined. Commonly abused classes of prescription drugs include painkillers, sedatives and stimulants. Many people mistakenly believe these medications are safe, even when used illicitly, because they are prescribed by physicians. they are not. among the most disturbing aspects of this emerging trend is its prevalence among teenagers and young adults. almost one in 10 high school seniors report non-medical use of vicodin. Most teenagers start their drug use by using their parents’ prescriptions found at home.

VIEWS OF ADDICTION HAVE EVOLVED

throughout much of the past century, scientists studying drug abuse labored in the shadows of powerful myths and misconceptions about the nature of addiction. When scientists began to study addictive behavior in the 1930s, addicts were thought to be morally flawed and lacking in willpower. those views shaped society’s responses to drug abuse, treating it as a moral failing rather than a health problem, which led to an emphasis on punitive rather than preventive and therapeutic actions. today, thanks to science, our views and responses to drug abuse have changed dramatically. Groundbreaking discoveries about the brain have revolutionized our understanding of drug addiction, enabling us to respond effectively to the problem.

WE JOKE ABOUT OUR ADDICTION TO CHOCOLATE, OR SHOPPING THE SALES, But addiCtion is an intenselY private, personal and ConfrontinG affliCtion as diffiCult to explain as it is to treat. this is a CoMplex issue—MuCh More CoMpliCated than siMplY draWinG on WillpoWer. We have all been touched by addictions either personally or professionally. Maybe it is someone you know—a loved one—or maybe it’s you. addiction is an equal-opportunity affliction affecting people without regard to their economic circumstance, education, race, geography, iQ or any other factor. the time has come to stop pushing addiction into the dark corners and stigmatizing those who suffer from the disease. today addicts are from all walks of life. they are well-educated and respected individuals such as Ceos, doctors, lawyers, businesspeople, housewives and their beloved family members.

scientists estimate genetic factors account for between 40 and 60 percent of a person’s vulnerability to addiction, including the effects of environment on gene expression and function.

researchers and scientists continue to put the puzzle pieces of this complex disease together. addiction is defined as a chronic, relapsing brain disease characterized by compulsive drug-seeking and use, despite harmful consequences. it is considered a brain disease because drugs change the brain; they change its structure and the way it works. these changes can be long-lasting, and can lead to the harmful behaviors seen in people who abuse drugs.

CAN ADDICTION BE CURED? IS RELAPSE INEVITABLE?

the brain has plasticity and can be healed. relapse is not inevitable. one thing becoming clearer is that addiction has not only psychological, social, environmental and genetic components, but also biochemical neurotransmitter (nt) imbalances. the biochemical nt imbalances may precipitate self-medicating with drugs and alcohol. dr. nora volkow, director of the national institute on

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natural approaCh

addiction

drug abuse (nida), has said, “i’ve studied alcohol, cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, marijuana and more recently, obesity. there’s a pattern in compulsion. i’ve never come across a single person that was addicted that wanted to be addicted. something has happened in their brains that has led them to that process.” it is fundamental to the recovery process that the underlying cause(s) of the addiction is identified and treated. researchers have identified many biological and environmental factors and are beginning to search for the genetic variations that contribute to the development and progression of the disease. scientists use this knowledge to develop effective prevention and treatment approaches that can reduce the toll drug abuse takes on individuals, families and communities.

MULTIPLE FACTORS OPERATE TOGETHER TO RESULT IN ADDICTION

no single factor determines whether or not a person will become addicted to drugs. scientists estimate genetic factors account for between 40 and 60 percent of a person’s vulnerability to addiction, including the effects of environment on gene expression and function. But just because an individual has a family history of substance abuse does not mean the gene will be expressed (activated). Genes are like light switches; they can be turned on and they can be turned off. however, the vulnerability increases with environmental, social and biochemical or neurotransmitter imbalances. alcohol and drugs are viewed as a quick and easy way to change ordinary, everyday reality from unbearable to bearable.

WHAT’S HAPPENS IN AN ADDICTED PERSON’S BRAIN?

a variety of brain effects occur with addiction. neurotransmitters (nt) become deficient. low levels of serotonin cause cravings, lack of motivation, pain, insomnia, anxiety and depression. deficient levels of gamma amino butyric acid (GaBa), which is needed for proper functioning of the brain and nervous system, cause anxiety, restlessness and insomnia. individuals with low GaBa tend to worry a lot. deficiencies or elevations of many specific nts have a significant impact on mental, emotional and behavioral functioning. Chronic exposure to drugs disrupts the way critical brain structures interact to control behavior—behavior specifically related to drug abuse. everyone wants to feel good, but if your nts are out of balance and you feel anxious, depressed, experience pain, have insomnia, fatigue, have cravings and lack motivation you are much more at risk for addictions and relapse.

THERE IS A WAY TO GET RELIEF— AFTER BEING TESTED

all these conditions can make a person more vulnerable to seek sex, prescription medications, illegal drugs or alcohol to relieve their symptoms.

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therefore, it makes perfect sense to test your nts. the imbalances can be corrected by using specific, targeted amino acids and nutrients, which is what the body uses to build and rebalance the brain. the results are the relief of symptoms without side effects and people are less likely to become addicted to substances. did you know psychiatry is the only medical specialty that does not test the human brain? fda neurotransmitter lab testing is readily available but most doctors just prescribe without testing the nts. We would not give insulin without testing the blood sugar; we wouldn’t prescribe thyroid replacement without testing thyroid function or treat other conditions without testing. Writing a prescription for Zoloft, lexapro, Celexa, Wellbutrin, paxil, prozac, or any moodaltering drug without nt lab results is often a misguided practice. physicians also prescribe drugs like methadone, suboxone or naltrexone, essentially substituting one addictive drug for another. the fact is, antidepressants only temporarily increase the concentration of nts in the space between two nerves (while simultaneously destroying some of the enzymes that feed the nts), resulting in long-term depletion within the secreting nerve cell. they are not the best answer.

LET’S TURN TO SOME SOLUTIONS

What builds and balances neurotransmitters? some of the many therapies include amino acids, nutrients, exercise, hypnotherapy, meditation, energy healing, acupuncture and education. all are valuable in setting the individual on a path to optimal health. addiction is a family problem and family therapy is critical. family members suffer along with the addict in ways that are difficult to describe. Many times the neurotransmitters of family members also have become imbalanced. addicts and their families need to have the chance to regain their successful and happy life. every life is a life worth saving.

WHY THE PUBLIC NEEDS TO UPDATE ITS VIEWS OF ADDICTION

public attitudes about addiction are out of sync with science. at Columbia university, the Center on addiction and substance abuse discovered through their naBas survey that the public does not recognize the role of genetics and biological factors in the development of addiction. of the respondents, 60 percent identified mutual support programs as a treatment intervention. patients face formidable barriers to


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receiving addiction treatment due to misunderstanding of the disease, negative public attitudes and behavior toward those with the disease, and negative perceptions of the treatment process. Many times the only things that stop addicted individuals from seeking a new life are ignorant actions and words of others and concern for how they would be labeled and perceived. for some, treatment can be a long-term process involving multiple interventions and regular monitoring. however, for many others, an understanding of what led them to their addictions in the first place and having their nts balanced can give them the motivation, focus and the energy to be more healthy and productive. the key to recovery is not a simple onesize-fits-all program, which is often overrated and many times unsuccessful. successful recovery is greater in programs that are comprehensive, customized to the individual and that return the addict to an overall state of health. Today there is hope for the addict and alcoholic:

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• Seek the best program and support for the addict and the family. • Test neurotransmitters to identify which of them are out of balance and to what degree. • Balance neurotransmitters through effective, specific natural supplements. • Consider IV therapies to add nutrients to the body, support brain function and detoxify the body through natural nutrients and supplements. IVs provide higher doses with 100 percent absorption and are faster-acting. • Ensure good nutrition. • Treatment programs must address the whole person. • Never give up hope for recovery— it can and does happen every day.

Dr. Norling brings a lifetime of education, training and passion in both conventional and natural medicine. Dr. Norling is tripleboarded and practices integrative and functional medicine. Using specialized testing she finds the root cause of symptoms and illnesses. Individualized care helps patients live their best lives. Call Mind Body Spirit Center in Westlake Village: 818.707.9355

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environMent organic mattresses

Why

orGaniC Mattresses? By Alicia Doyle

AS THE FOUNDER OF A MATTRESS STORE SPECIALIZING IN ORGANIC PRODUCTS, sharon CooK shares her KnoWledGe and Continues her eduCational JourneY While offerinG produCts that Won’t harM the planet. “organic, eco-friendly, sustainable-sourced goods are important to me,” said Cook, the founder of snoozzz Mattress located at 2920 e. thousand oaks Blvd. in thousand oaks. snoozzz Mattress specializes in contemporary and organic mattresses, foundations, organic bedding, pillows and accessories, power-lift chairs and recliners, handmade wood beds and custom-upholstered beds. “our clientele is welcomed into our tranquil showroom where they are offered a bottle of water and a fresh pillowcase,” Cook said.the 2,600-square-foot showroom features products carefully handpicked from independent, family-owned manufacturers and suppliers with a multi-decade history of quality, reliability, innovation, integrity and value. “our friendly and knowledgeable associates are available to answer questions and explain the benefits of the various options,” Cook said. “in our comfortable environment, you will be encouraged to lie down and really enjoy how pleasant choosing a new bed can be.” organic mattresses are made with organic and non-toxic materials instead of conventional and chemically-questionable materials. parents and physicians recommend organic mattresses as a way to avoid unnecessary exposure to these chemicals. “an organic mattress has three simple ingredients: cotton, natural latex and wool,” Cook explained. “they are naturally antimicrobial, hypo-allergenic, dust mite- and bedbug-resistant and do not contain harmful off-gassing chemicals.” a true organic mattress is made of pure natural components only—no synthetic or poly blends. “examples of synthetic materials are memory foam and gel compounds that react to your body temperature,” Cook said. “over an extended period of time, these materials break down, creating an uneven sleeping surface. the break-down of materials creates off-gassing that has been linked to many health-related ailments.”

AN ORGANIC MATTRESS HAS THREE SIMPLE INGREDIENTS: COTTON, NATURAL LATEX AND WOOL.

32 | yhcMAGAZINE.COM

SEPTEMBER 2012


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Mattresses made from petroleum-based chemicals such as polyurethane foam are highly flammable and in the u.s. require the addition of flame-retardant chemicals to make them flame-resistant. in the past, the most commonly used flame retardants were polybrominated diphenyl ethers (pBdes), which were banned in europe after they were found to be accumulating in blood and breast milk and interfering with thyroid hormones— ultimately affecting brain development. in the u.s., penta and octa pBdes are no longer produced but loopholes in the regulations do not provide full protection from these and other toxic fire retardants. unlike in other countries, mattresses and other foam furniture must still meet stringent flame-resistant standards in the united states. organic mattresses contain wool, a natural flame-retardant and body temperature regulator. another unique feature, latex rubber, relieves pressure points, resists body impressions, and has a high elastic/buoyancy quality that allows movement without interrupting sleep. “natural latex is durable and will last 30-plus years,” Cook said. snoozzz Mattress features oMi mattresses certified by the Global organic textile standard, recognized worldwide as the leading processing standard for textiles made from organic fibers. according to the international Working Group on Global organic textile standard, this certification defines highlevel environmental criteria along the entire supply chain of organic textiles and requires compliance with social criteria as well. “organic mattresses have been around for many years,” Cook further emphasized. “as society becomes more aware of the preservatives used in our food and chemicals contained in daily household products, manufacturers have made it easier for people to purchase these products. Knowledge creates change.” ultimately, said Cook, “our mission is to offer quality sleeping products and furniture that are exclusively americanmade and healthier for both people and planet.”

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yhcMAGAZINE.COM | 33


healthY Kids

adolescent health care

as the founder of the onlY MediCal praCtiCe in ventura CountY exClusivelY dediCated to the MediCal Care of teens and YounG adults, dr. david loWe said the BiGGest MYth in adolesCent health Care is that Most teens are a proBleM and Can’t MaKe healthY deCisions or ChanGes for theMselves—When in faCt 85 perCent of teens do Just fine in the end. “adolescent health care is about helping young people make the transition from childhood to young adulthood in as healthy a manner as possible,” said dr. lowe. “it is to take care of their medical needs in the context of their developmental maturation and aiding them in making good decisions for their health not only physically but also mentally, emotionally, socially and spiritually.” after practicing general pediatrics for 31 years, in 2007 dr. lowe started a practice in Camarillo exclusively for teens and young adults called adcare plus that’s dedicated to helping them become involved in their own health care and learn how to navigate the health care system.  “Most adolescent health care tends to be fragmented, with them seeing a dermatologist for the acne or skin problems, maybe an orthopedic surgeon for their sports injuries, a gynecologist for menstrual problems, a pediatrician or family practitioner for their check-ups, a psychiatrist for their emotional problems or for adhd, an allergist for their asthma,” said dr. lowe, a member of the society of adolescent health and Medicine. “Most of these problems can be handled by the generalist for teens and young adults with an occasional need for specialty care by the specialists.”

“THEY WANT TO BE TREATED WITH MORE AUTONOMY AND HAVE EXTRA TIME DEVOTED TO THEM—TO LISTEN TO THEM.”

adcare plus

helpsteens

transition from Childhood to Young adulthood By Alicia Doyle

34 | yhcMAGAZINE.COM

SEPTEMBER 2012


MEETING UNIQUE NEEDS

adcare plus, located at 390 e. las posas road, suite 204 in Camarillo, serves about 1,500 patients ranging from 10 to 30 years old. “My patients come because they no longer feel comfortable in a pediatric office or in a family practice office. they don’t want to be associated with babies or toddlers or with the elderly,” dr. lowe said. “they want to be treated with more autonomy and have extra time devoted to them—to listen to them.” their visits are typically longer than in the pediatric office. “this is a low-volume practice and the time allotted for a complete physical is 60 minutes,” dr. lowe said. during this time, an assessment is made about the person’s complete health—physically, mentally, emotionally, socially and spiritually. “they are affirmed for the good choices or habits they are making for their health and areas for improvement are highlighted,” dr. lowe said.  “other patients come for various reasons or symptoms such as adhd becoming a problem now in high school or college, for mood problems such as anxiety or depression, for std testing, for sports injuries, for acne care, for contraception, for immunizations, for opiate withdrawal.” More specifically, Adcare Plus offers:

• acne care including the use of accutane. • Contraceptive care that involves the option of implanon insertion. • opiate withdrawal treatment incorporating the use of suboxone. • adhd medication prescription and supervision. • std testing and treatment. • immunizations including the human papillomavirus (hpv) vaccine (for warts usually transmitted sexually). • Medical care for acute illnesses and chronic symptoms like abdominal pain, headaches or fatigue. • Medications for anxiety, depression or mood instability. “our ultimate goal is to promote adolescent medical care as a real entity so more and more young people in this age range can have medical care tailored to their unique needs and changing development,” dr. lowe said. “it is said that if you can help 1 out of 10 teens make a positive change in their lives then it is cost-effective. i think we can do much better than 10 percent.”

A PASSION FOR ADOLESCENT CARE

Born in Walla Walla, Washington, dr. lowe was raised in southern California. at age six, he moved to ventura County, where his father worked as a general practitioner in the city of oxnard.

at adcare plus, “i care for individuals from 12 years of age to 26 years of age. We fill the gap of pediatrics practices and internal medicine practice as far as age range,” dr. lowe explained. additionally, “i supervise medical care for young people as they enter adolescence through young adulthood, so adcare plus stands for adolescent care plus young adult medical care.” 

it is said that if you can help 1 out of 10 teens make a positive change in their lives then it is cost-effective. I think we can do much better than 10 percent.

after graduating from the loma linda university school of Medicine in 1971, he spent his internship at the harbor uCla Medical Center in torrance and his pediatric residency at Children’s hospital of los angeles. he became board certified as a pediatrician in 1976 and was elected as a fellow of the american academy of pediatrics shortly thereafter. “While practicing general pediatrics i came to love taking care of the adolescents,” dr. lowe recalled. “i spearheaded changing the general pediatric office to better accommodate the teenagers.”  despite this, far fewer patients were returning to the office after graduating from high school, he said. “so i decided to open a practice just for their age group.” three paradigm shifts changed his attitudes regarding adolescent medicine: “the first was that 85 percent of adolescents ultimately do fine. the next was that if you can influence 10 percent of the adolescents to make a positive health change it is cost-effective. and the third was that i don’t have to change the adolescent completely in one visit. at each visit i just need to assess their stage of change and try to nudge them to the next stage of change. this became much more manageable, less frustrating and more effective.”  ultimately, dr. lowe would like to see multiple adolescent medicine physicians in the practice. “nearly all adolescent medicine specialists are associated with university teaching programs with only a few in private practice in the community.”  this is a time of great change for young people and is very formative for their lives, he further emphasized. “it is important for this age group to have a trusted and competent health care provider to be a medical home for their various medical needs in the context of the large changes they have to make during the transition from childhood to independent adult.” For more information, call 805.482.8080 or visit www.adcareplus.com.

SEPTEMBER 2012

yhcMAGAZINE.COM | 35


sMiles

holistic dentistry

THERE ARE ALMOST 1,000 DIFFERENT WHITE DENTAL FILLING MATERIALS COMMONLY USED BY DENTISTS AROUND THE WORLD TODAY.

Your Mouth —Your health By Dr. Blanche D. Grube

36 | yhcMAGAZINE.COM

SEPTEMBER 2012

MOST HEALTH-CONSCIOUS CONSUMERS KNOW THAT ALLERGIES CAN CREATE ALL KINDS OF PROBLEMS IN YOUR BODY. food allergies in particular can cause reactions that manifest themselves as everything from a rash or hives to a total inability to breath. in the latter case (and the medical term for that kind of emergency is anaphylaxis) it can result in death. people with food allergies usually are very careful about reading labels and making sure that what they are about to consume does not contain an ingredient to which their body can react. When it comes to food allergens most people today are at least familiar with the most common ones: peanuts, dairy, wheat and shellfish. But many are not familiar with the reactive contaminants in their fillings or the dental materials used to repair decayed, broken or missing teeth.


WHEN SILVER ISN’T SILVER

Most health-conscious people are also aware that the so called silver fillings in their mouths are hardly silver at all (less than 15 percent silver the day they were inserted). they are really mercury-amalgam fillings containing 54 percent mercury the day they are inserted. the mercury comes off as a gas 24/7. the gas is colorless, odorless and tasteless, so you cannot see it, smell it, taste it or feel it. it is absorbed through the mouth tissues and is swallowed every time you swallow. Mercury is a known neurotoxin and for the most part people know that in order to have mercury fillings removed properly you must go to a dentist well-trained in the proper removal of this hazardous material. Mercury is one dental material to which everyone is reactive. What most people don’t know is that many other dental materials can cause a reaction to their bodies.

WHITE FILLINGS CAN ALSO CAUSE HARM

Most people believe if they don’t have any obviously black or metallic-looking stuff in their mouths that they must be okay. that is simply not true. there are almost 1,000 different white dental filling materials commonly used by dentists around the world today. While they may not contain mercury—and that’s very good—still about half of them are reactive to 95 percent of the population. You may be asking the question right now, “if my body is reactive to my dental filling materials, then why do i not have a rash or not have the inability to breath easily?” the answer to that question is simple. not all reactions are alike or even blatantly noticeable. if you have a reactive material in your mouth it could be causing you to have very subtle symptoms you would not easily connect to your dentistry. some of the symptoms caused by reactive dental material could be fatigue (can’t get up), brain fog (can’t remember what you got up for), irritability (more than usual), rashes (often diagnosed as rosacea), muscle weakness, Candida infections, digestive disturbances, etc, etc. if you haven’t been feeling as well as you think you should then perhaps it’s because you have been ingesting and consuming a dental material and your body is reacting. the solution to this problem is first to have a dental reactivity test and then to visit a dentist trained to read it. the dentists at Centers for healing in newbury park, California are experts in interpreting these kinds of reports and understanding the effects of heavy metals on your body and how to safely remove them. You can reach Centers for Healing at 805.375.2233 for more information about their complete dental services and the BioComp dental biocompatibility test.


reCipe

almond coconut banana bread

eat like a Caveman! the paleolithiC diet, also KnoWn as the CaveMan diet is a neW approaCh to Good nutrition Based on What CaveMen are presuMed to have eaten aBout 10,000 Years aGo. it consists of plants and animal protein and is void of whole grains, dairy, sugar, legumes, potatoes, and processed oils. You can bet that YhC Magazine will have an article coming soon on this one, so for now, enjoy this wonderful option to Banana bread – it’s dairy-free and gluten-free!

Almond Coconut Banana Bread INGREDIENTS

• • • • • • • • • •

1 cup almond flour 1/2 cup coconut flour 1/4 cup flax seed meal 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon salt 4 eggs 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted 1 tablespoon maple syrup 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 large ripe banana, mashed

INSTRUCTIONS

1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 small loaf pans (5 3/4 x 3 1/2). Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Combine wet ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together. pour wet into dry ingredients and mix until fully incorporated. divide evenly (dough will be thick) into loaf pans and smooth the tops. Bake for about 35 minutes. remove loaves from oven, let cool inpans for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to continue cooling.

Serves: 12 slices

for more paleo recipes, visit www.runningtothekitchen.com

38 | yhcMAGAZINE.COM

SEPTEMBER 2012


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YHC MAGAZINE - SEPTEMBER 2012