Category Archives: Uncategorized

Colin Kaepernick Protesting “Oppression”

I wanted to write something about the football player Colin Kaepernick who doesn’t want to stand for the National Anthem. I’m not big on flags or anthems. But he really is a goofball.

I don’t want to get into all the race stuff here. America in general is not a “racist” country, especially given that Americans elected a black President in 2008 and reelected him in 2012. Obama couldn’t have gotten elected without the majority of white voters.

And I don’t want to get into the police stuff here. I think there would be fewer incidents of police harassing innocent black people if we ended the drug war. That’s the main cause of many of America’s social and criminal justice issues now. You’ll never stop people from getting their drugs if they want them. America was not meant to be a police state, or a nanny state.

Kaepernick was also shown wearing a shirt with pictures of Fidel Castro, while protesting America’s “oppression” of black people. Fidel Castro killed thousands of people while administering over a totalitarian regime of communist … “oppression.”

Meanwhile, back in capitalist America, Colin Kaepernick is making millions of dollars as a football player, and now as a Nike advertiser. Cognitive dissonance here?

Anyway, I just think Kaepernick is a goofball, with wild and crazy hair. He actually has more hair than Linc on “The Mod Squad.” So, he cracks me up.

And if he is so against “oppression,” then why is he a football player? They keep bashing each other’s heads and getting concussions. The whole thing is nuts.

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Brief Summary of Experiences with Colitis

I wanted to write just a brief summary of my experiences with the ulcerative colitis (UC) here, before I do the post on my experiences with the “doctors” and their bad advice.

The UC started in July 1999 with seeing blood with BMs. By September 1999 a “flexible sigmoidoscopy” indicated that the cause of the problems was UC. In September-October 1999 I was having maybe 10-15 BMs per day, mainly stimulated by the bleeding that was caused by inflammation. I also had a low blood count and low protein level, and weight being in the 117-125 lbs range. After being given a mesalamine based prescription anti-inflammatory, it was better by maybe late November and things were more normal by mid-December 1999.

But it got worse again in January 2000. I’ll get into much more specifics in my post about experiences with “doctors” and their bad advice. But it was much better again and more normal by April 2000. I had relapses between August 2001 and April 2005. If there’s bleeding with BMs I call that a “relapse.” But the number of BMs during those relapses were no more than 6 per day, not exactly 10-15 like during 1999-2000.

The situation was under control from 2005-2012, when starting in November 2012 there was the first relapse in 7 years. At that time I was under a lot of stress and there were some issues with my supplements, including the acidophilus “pearls” that I had been taking since December 2005 not being as good as they used to be, which I confirmed by seeing that other people were experiencing the same issue of that supplement not being as good as it used to be, as I saw on Amazon reviews at that time (which was good enough of a confirmation for me). So, the 2012-13 relapse ended by March 2013, and I switched to a different brand of acidophilus starting June 2013. I haven’t had a UC issue since then, except for occasional spasming and other non-bleeding digestive reactions.

So that’s my summary of those UC experiences since 1999. And I will be much more specific in my post on the experiences with “doctors” and their bad advice. I don’t know when I will do that, though.

Anti-Inflammatory Foods and Supplements, and More on Vitamins

First, this isn’t “advice,” because I am not a licensed nutritionist or otherwise medical professional. I am just giving my own personal experiences with things as well as what I have learned over the years, and readers can take it for what it’s worth.

But I really wanted to write a blog or article on my experiences with “doctors” and their bad advice that made things worse and caused new problems. But before I do that (and I don’t know when that might be), I wanted to write a little more on my experiences with the ulcerative colitis (UC), a.k.a. inflammatory bowel disease, as well as my experiences with supplements.

The UC began mainly in 1999. While I was given anti-inflammatory prescription drugs from then until the late 2000s, by about 2009 I was then relying on nutritional medicine including foods of an anti-inflammatory nature, supplements that could have anti-inflammatory effects, and other vitamins and supplements to make up for whatever nutrition might be lost because of not having the vegetables that are important for anti-oxidants and minerals such as magnesium, zinc and vitamin K and K2.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I have learned that one can have too much of the vitamins and supplements, which could interfere with the body’s natural anti-inflammatory functioning and could actually compromise the immune system. Since May, for instance, I have reduced the vitamin D, from a total of over 4000 i.u. per day to now approx. 2400 per day. I wasn’t counting the added vitamin D in the milk I drink, and I wasn’t counting the 1000 i.u. vitamin D that my multi-vitamin has.

And that’s another thing that I didn’t mention in my previous post, it was possible the the iron was also interfering with my magnesium. My main source of iron was the multi-vitamin, that I was taking twice of per day. So I only take one multi-vitamin per day now. I have learned that it’s not a good idea to take too much iron, because it can build up in the blood and cause more problems. And I think that’s whether one is getting it from a supplement or from food such as red meat that contains a lot of iron.

As far as foods that contain properties of an anti-inflammatory nature (at least for the purpose of keeping UC in check), that includes whole milk, because milk fat has anti-inflammatory properties, as well as butter which is mainly milk fat. Butter is healthier anyway, than margarine, because of containing natural nutrients including omega 3 and vitamins. Margarine is a processed food containing chemicals and is not good.

And extra virgin olive oil is an important factor in preventing inflammation, not only if someone has UC or inflammatory bowel but it’s good to prevent inflammation of the heart and arteries.

Also concord grape juice is good, as far as foods are concerned.

Although not related to the subject of UC, I mentioned the arteries. A common scapegoat of problems with the arteries is cholesterol, when oftentimes the real culprit is inflammation. But another cause of issues in the arteries is calcifications, a calcium buildup in the arteries. That would be because of not getting enough vitamin K2, the main sources of which are vegetables (which I can’t have because of having UC). The vitamin K2’s main function is calcium distribution, in which K2 efficiently distributes the calcium to the bones that need the calcium, and prevents maldistribution of calcium to other areas that don’t want it, such as the arteries and the heart. So I also take vitamin K2, as well as vitamin D, C, natural E, and B complex. And magnesium and zinc too.

Just one final note about the B complex. I have learned from my experiences over all these years now and from what I read on the Internet that it’s not a good idea to take too much vitamin B6. Some B-complex vitamins contain too much B6. It should be a low amount. You really have to do your own research in all these things as I have had to do. And the actual learning experiences with all these things doesn’t seem to stop.

But regarding the ulcerative colitis, I will have to save more info on that regarding my experiences in the next post.

But the post or article I really want to write is about the bad advice and prescriptions from “doctors” as well as their withholding information about nutrition. Maybe that will be some time soon.

My Experiences with Ensure and Magnesium supplements

As I referred to in my earlier summary of my situation, I went through an ordeal with digestive issues, mainly “ulcerative colitis” (UC) or “inflammatory bowel,” in which I was in very bad shape mainly July 1999 until it was a lot better by April 2000. There were relapses (if there’s bleeding with BMs, that’s a “relapse” to me) from 2001 to 2005 and again in November-December 2012. It’s been more under control again since 2013.

I would say that between September and November 1999 my symptoms included bleeding with BMs, approx. 10-15 BMs per day, most of which were stimulated by the bleeding (I think). It got better by November probably because of the Rowasa enema. However, by January 2000 it got worse again. (I’ll get into that in more detail some other time!) And after various different medications it was better again by April 2000. By then I learned that diet plays a big role.

Anyway, one thing that I started in March 2000 was drinking Ensure, a liquid nutritional supplement to help me to reduce actual solid food intake while the lower digestive problem continued to try to heal. I think the Ensure was a big help in getting that better and getting in better physical health, by getting adequate nutritional support without too much solid food.

But the thing is, I continued to eat minimal amounts of solid food but also drink the Ensure as a main part of my nutritional intake for years and didn’t realize that it should only be temporary. (And it wasn’t any doctor who told me about the Ensure, it was my mother!) It took from that previous July of 1999 until March 2000 until I even KNEW about the Ensure!

So then I continued to drink Ensure mainly “Ensure Plus” the 8-oz. bottles, 4 per day, until September or October of 2013. Between then and 2016 I gradually decreased the Ensure from 4 to 3 per day, 3 to 2, 2 to 1, and then my last one was in June 2016. During that time (2013-2016) I had added hard-boiled eggs to my diet, a 2nd piece of chicken per day (white meat) for lunch in addition to one for dinner, extra-virgin olive oil, and butter replacing the margarine. But I still take quite a few vitamins and supplements.

And here is where I want to explain my situation with the magnesium. And these are my experiences and my own conclusions, so you can take it FWIW.

So, I didn’t have any problems (not really anyway) with my arms, such as with carrying heavy shopping bags and doing my regular exercises like push-ups in the morning, until January 2015. That was when I reduced the Ensure from 2 to 1 (8-oz. bottles). That month through March 2015 I had weakness in the arms and it was a problem. By March I learned that one cause of that could be magnesium deficiency.

So at that time I started taking magnesium citrate as I described in a previous post. And the arms weakness was really going away and by April or May 2015 was a lot better. Can I conclude from that that such weakness was associated with my decreasing the Ensure from 2 to 1 in January? Well, Ensure contains several added vitamins and minerals as well as protein and calories, including “magnesium phosphate.” Ensure Plus’s “% daily value” of magnesium is 25% and I was taking 4 per day for over 10 years. So my conclusion was that my body was used to the magnesium in the Ensure, but when reducing Ensure to 1 per day, that caused trouble. (I was having no other sources of magnesium, because I can’t have those vegetables and nuts that you need for magnesium intake.) I also had problems with various kinds of fish which is apparently high in magnesium, so I gave up on fish as well.

I continued with the magnesium citrate but then had more problems with the arms starting in October 2016. I guess I had a left elbow tendon injury which was probably caused by carrying heavy shopping bags all the way from stores to my apartment. (No car.) And then I reaggravated an old upper right arm injury because of carrying everything with my right arm because of the left arm healing. (Tendon injuries are difficult to heal and get reaggravated easily — please don’t get me started on that now.) So I increased the magnesium citrate because items on the Internet indicated that more magnesium is required to heal those kinds of tendon injuries.

But then the magnesium citrate I was taking (Vitamin World brand) still didn’t seem adequate, and the store here closed down as well. I took Magnesium glycinate at an earlier point in December 2015 for a few weeks but it seemed to have side effects, which I could be wrong about, and went back to magnesium citrate. So now I’ve been taking magnesium glycinate again and it really does seem to absorb better. However, after a month of that again this past December (2017) into January, it seemed to be getting interfered with by a different supplement that I occasionally took for reducing stress, “L-theanine.” Nothing on the Internet states that there’s an interaction between those two, or ANY known interactions between magnesium glycinate and other supplements. But I have to assume that something was going on there, and so I won’t take theanine anymore. Then, while things seemed to be getting better again, I happened to decide to increase my vitamin b12 from 2000 to 3000 mcg and it seemed that THAT was then interfering with my magnesium glycinate. So the b12 is back down to 2000 mcg per day. And that’s where I am now. I haven’t consulted with a nutritionist and rely mainly on the Internet for info. For now I’m sticking with the magnesium glycinate. (Apparently, magnesium chloride is also very good and highly absorbed, but lack of availability is a problem. I don’t want to order supplements on the Internet.)

UPDATE on 3/13/18: I was still having problems with the magnesium glycinate. I’ve been taking the KAL brand, which gets a low grade on Labdoor.com because apparently KAL magnesium tests very high for arsenic and lead. I don’t know if that’s what the problem was, but I have switched back to magnesium citrate, this time the Bluebonnet brand which gets high marks on the lab websites. So far so good.

Some of My Experiences Regarding Nutritional Supplements

Here are some items of information regarding my experiences with my digestive issues and nutritional supplements. I am not a “licensed nutritionist” and I’m not “giving medical advice” because I know there are bureaucrats who want to crack down on bloggers for “giving medical advice” while being “unlicensed.” But I am just relaying what I’ve learned thus far via my own personal experiences and information I’ve read extensively for these past 15 years now. You can look into these things further yourself if this interests you, or you can take it with a grain of sea salt. It’s up to you.

Because of some issues in my digestive system, while I can have “bland” foods such as baked chicken white meat and hard-boiled eggs, there are some foods I can’t have, such as most vegetables and fruits. However, I can have baked potato without the skin. I also have carrot juice, which has been a huge important addition since I discovered it. The carrot juice gives a great amount of vitamin A and potassium. I also have organic grape juice and apple juice. And thank God for the extra virgin olive oil as well.

But I do have various vitamins and other supplements to make sure I’m getting enough of the nutrients that might be missing, especially from my not eating actual vegetables. Now, for those who think that the studies which have concluded that taking nutritional supplements and vitamins makes no difference, the reason those studies conclude that (besides studies being funded by a Big Agra or Big Pharma company), is because most of the time those studies use junk products, such as synthetic vitamin E (dl-alpha tocopherol). Many vitamin E supplements use that form which is why they have virtually no effect. The more effective form of vitamin E is d-alpha tocopherol (not dl-alpha), which is the natural form. The label states which one the product has. I have learned quite a lot about all these things since about 15 years ago when my medical issues began.

And I also take quercetin in a capsule supplement, Quercetin is a natural bioflavonoid which is found in some fruits and vegetables and has a high antioxidant effect. The problem with these supplement makers is that, while quercetin is a good thing to have in a supplement form (especially if you can’t have most fruits and vegetables but still need their antioxidant benefits), the quercetin supplement producers provide too high a dosage per capsule. I’m getting the lowest dosage I can find (500 mg) and even that’s too high, so I pour out at least half of the contents in the sink.

But most supplement makers seem to be putting too much into each pill. I wish they would make supplements with lower dosages.

I have already addressed vitamin C, and linked to this article regarding the effectiveness of lower dosages vs. higher dosages. i.e. taking too much at a time and per day reduces its effectiveness.

Another thing that’s important is magnesium. You get that mostly in leafy vegetables and nuts. I can’t have any of those things. Most magnesium supplements, and the forms of magnesium that most multi vitamins provide, are not very well absorbed, and mainly go right down the digestive system and act as laxatives. I guess that’s okay if you need a laxative. But a lot of people need extra magnesium for muscle health. So I was taking magnesium citrate, which is known to be very absorbable, certainly more than other forms. But I still felt I wasn’t getting enough, and when I increased the magnesium citrate it was then beginning to have too much of a laxative effect. So I have switched to magnesium glycinate which is a 200mg caplet that supposedly gives you 50% of the RDA. I think it’s possible that 200mg is just too much at once, so I’d like to get that in 100mg tablets or caplets.

Why aren’t more of these products available at the regular stores like CVS, etc.? Much of what they sell is magnesium crap, i.e. just not useful. And I don’t want to order stuff online.

And vitamin D is important. The best way to get adequate vitamin D is sunlight exposure. But if you take a vitamin D supplement, it is also important to balance that with adequate vitamin K2. The vitamin D helps your calcium intake to absorb, but that vitamin D and calcium need K2 to distribute the calcium to where it needs to go: the bones, mainly. Without adequate vitamin K2, your calcium could get built up in the arteries or heart. Most people who eat conscientiously, with a goodly amount of vegetables, etc., probably get enough vitamin K2. But there are people like me who can’t have those vegetables so I have to take K2 supplement. The problem with many of these supplement makers is that there seems to be too much an emphasis on the mk-7 version of K2 and not enough on the mk-4 version. Mk-7 is extracted from fermented soybeans, or natto. But supposedly if you take mk-7 supplements it stays in the bloodstream for several days, so you don’t have to take it on a daily basis. At least that is what I’ve learned up to this point. But most of the K2 producers are making K2 with the Mk-7 and there are not enough mk-4 products available. And why don’t these regular stores like the CVS or Walgreens sell ANY vitamin K2 or even K1 products? They really ought to look into that.

Probiotic supplements such as acidophilus are also important. That’s the “good” bacteria in the intestines, mainly large intestine or colon, that kills off the “bad” bacteria. Supposedly much of one’s immune system is in the intestines and having probiotic supplements is a good idea. The best forms of probiotics are in enteric-coated tablets or capsules, to make sure that the cultures are not released until the pill gets lower down. If the content is released too high up such as while still in the stomach then not enough of the bacteria cultures will make it down alive to be able to do anything useful for your colon. (The Vitamin World store’s own acidophilus capsules state that they are “rapid release,” implying that they dissolve soon after taking them, which is not good.) It is also important to note the expiration dates of the package, because if it is a product that has been sitting on the store shelf for months and months, then the bacteria cultures might very well have already died off and won’t do any good. It is also a good idea to refrigerate the package even if the product doesn’t say to do so.

So, while I’m not a nutritionist I thought I’d write about what I’ve learned and experienced thus far in these past 15 years of my medical and digestive issues.

California Against Free Speech

In California, Gov. Jerry Brown has signed into law a requirement that women’s reproductive health clinics must inform patients of abortion as an alternative. The requirement now applies to religious-based clinics, even if such a requirement goes against the clinicians’ personal beliefs.

So, what they’re saying is, even if you oppose abortion you must nevertheless aid the woman or girl in her possibly getting an abortion. This doesn’t only apply to clinics that receive public funding, but those that don’t as well. And it applies to both licensed and unlicensed clinics. The new law has caused two lawsuits now. This is clearly a freedom of speech issue. If Dr. Smith wants to care for pregnant women at her clinic but feels that discussing abortion violates her religious views, she has a freedom of speech right not to discuss it. So this is the government really forcing a medical practitioner to discuss something that goes against her deeply held beliefs.

But UC, Irvine “constitutional law” professor Erwin Chemerinsky agrees with the law, in this op-ed in the LA Times. To diminish the serious rights-infringement aspect of the lawsuits, Chemerinsky immediately begins by writing, “Is merely requiring clinics to inform women of the availability of free or low-cost abortions an unconstitutional infringement of religious liberty?” Note his use of “merely,” like it’s no big deal. You see, to some people who identify very closely with a particular agenda (in this case, the abortion agenda), he doesn’t seem to empathize very well with those who are being forced to express ideas they strongly oppose.

Chemerinsky concludes his essay with a very incorrect assertion about the two clinics involved in the suit: “They are both part of an aggressive ongoing effort to deny women access to reproductive healthcare.” By “reproductive healthcare,” he means “abortion,” which he won’t even state explicitly at the end. And c’mon, Professor, no one is being “denied access” to abortion facilities. No, the two religious clinics are speaking up for themselves (in the absence of “constitutional law” professors who won’t speak up for them) in the ongoing crusade to force them to express views and ideas that violate their religious beliefs.

Update After a Year’s Absence; Vitamin C Issue

Last year I had started this blog and then got busy with other things. It’s almost a year gone by since the previous post, and I am going to try to return to writing regularly. So here I am again.

As a follow-up to my post on vitamin C, I did gradually reduce my daily vitamin C from a max of 6000 mg per day (not all at once, but in smaller amounts throughout the day) to 1250 mg per day. I am taking a 250 mg tablet 5 times per day. As I wrote in my previous post of over a year ago, this study notes that the higher amount of vitamin C at one time, the lower the absorption rate. That seems to make sense to me. However, it recommends 400 mg per day and that 200 mg at one time is preferable. I think that individual factors vary, such as someone’s weight, digestive functioning, etc. I believe that I am taking what is probably appropriate for me.

As I mentioned in that other post, I believe that the osteoarthritis that I seemed to be developing was probably because of the extremely high amounts of vitamin C per day. This was a good source of information for me. This article explains that a possible cause of osteoarthritis includes excessive vitamin C supplementation. On the osteoarthritis issue, that seems to have gone away.

I do take other supplements and have other issues in the health area, and I intend to write about them, among other issues, here.

Don’t Panic over Ebola Possibly Spreading in U.S.

People in America should not panic over Ebola just because two nurses got it from the one patient in Dallas. Both nurses, I believe, have been confirmed free of Ebola now after being treated. And the two America doctors who were confirmed Ebola victims after having been in Africa are now both free of it. The problem with Ebola in Africa as far as the rapid spread of it includes the poor immune systems of those there in Africa as compared to those here in the U.S. In many parts of Africa there is widespread malnutrition, and also sanitation is poorly managed over there. There are also many more pollutants and there is a lack of clean water as compared to the U.S. And all those factors affect people’s health including their immune systems. Another issue in Africa is that some people there practice rituals when mourning their dead loved ones, in which they kiss and touch the deceased loved one’s corpse, which, if the deceased had had Ebola it is very likely that those who touch the corpse may very well get it as well. That is another major contributor to the fast spreading of Ebola in Africa.

Scotland Will Not Secede

So the people of Scotland voted not to secede from the U.K. Hmmm. You know, this democracy thing, 55% of the Scots voting to force 45% to remain in a “union” in which they would rather not remain, seems unjust. I guess we’re saying that some people do have a right to compel other people to some association involuntarily. It just doesn’t sound right or moral, if you ask me.

Is Vitamin C Supplementation Necessary? Harmful?

I have read quite a bit about vitamin C over the years, and have my own experiences and conclusions to share here. Now, I am not giving “medical advice,” as I do not want to be accused by some bureaucrat of “giving medical advice without being licensed,” etc. But I do have a right to share some information I have learned.

Yes, vitamin C is good for you and necessary, but excessive amounts and in the long term can be harmful. Some people such as myself have some issues in the digestive area and can’t eat some of the foods, such as certain fruits and vegetables, which is where vitamin C is mostly naturally found. So I take some vitamins and other nutritional supplements to make up for what might be missing. I know, some of the supplements might be unreliable, and you really have to do your research when looking for the right ones to take.

Over the past several years I had increased my vitamin C supplementation because I thought it was a good idea. I take it with breakfast, lunch and dinner, because vitamin C absorbs and is excreted from your system very quickly. However, a few months ago I added an extra 1000 mg, and within the next few months I had experienced some muscle aches and some joint pain. I believe that the symptoms coincided with the increase in vitamin C because i had not made any other changes in those months. The symptoms could have been caused by something else, however.

So in doing some more recent research, i have discovered that excessive amounts of vitamin C and/or having high amounts of it in the long term could cause some issues. Some adverse reactions could include osteoarthritis and excessive iron absorption, among other issues. Now, I don’t know if that’s what I had been experiencing, but I did reduce the vitamin C gradually, from a peak of 6000 mg (not all at once, but total per day) down to 3500 mg. And I intend to further reduce it.

I found this good source of info, by the way: NYU Langone Medical Center on vitamin C. Even Wikipedia has some good information on it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin_C.

One study that Wikipedia points to, however, finds that the higher the amounts of vitamin C the lower the absorption rate. Now, if that’s true, then I wonder how those who take too much vitamin C (which allegedly isn’t absorbing as well as the lower amounts, according to the study) could be developing symptoms that are supposedly being caused by too much vitamin C?

Besides vitamin C, one important aspect of immune system support is probiotic bacteria. That is why probiotic supplements such as acidophilus are very helpful not only in maintaining good digestive system support but immune system support as well.

Obama Needlessly Sending Military to Africa to Fight Ebola

Researcher Jon Rappoport has been writing quite a bit about the Ebola panic. He mentions that the mainstream media do not seem to be questioning the assertion that “otherwise healthy” people are getting sick from Ebola. In his latest post today, Rappoport once again notes that the conditions there in Africa tend to contribute to compromising the immune system. He writes:

The true immunosuppressive factors include: severe malnutrition; starvation; war; contaminated water; basic lack of sanitation; overcrowding; fertile growing-land stolen from the people; industrial pollutants and pesticides; toxic medical drugs and vaccines which push already compromised immune systems over the edge into complete failure.

If those factors can be addressed — and after all the money that Western governments have been throwing into “aid to Africa,” why aren’t they? — then the immune systems of the people there would be stronger and better able to fend off diseases such as Ebola.

The reason why there won’t be an epidemic or pandemic here in the U.S. is because, as bad as the immune systems of many Americans are nowadays, most are nevertheless strong enough to resist the Ebola virus. Those who are already very sick and perhaps the elderly may be more vulnerable, though.