Newsletter Archives > ChiroPlanet.com Monthly Health Newsletter: April 2016 Health Newsletter

April 2016 Health Newsletter


Current Articles

» Chiropractic Cuts Blood Pressure
» Chiropractic Care Shown To Be Cost Effective
» Obesity Grows Around The World
» Research Says Fitness Trackers May Not Be Accurate

Chiropractic Cuts Blood Pressure

Chiropractic Cuts Blood Pressure

March 16, 2007 -- A special chiropractic adjustment can significantly lower high blood pressure, a placebo-controlled study suggests.

"This procedure has the effect of not one, but two blood-pressure medications given in combination," study leader George Bakris, MD, tells WebMD. "And it seems to be adverse-event free. We saw no side effects and no problems," adds Bakris, director of the University of Chicago hypertension center.

Eight weeks after undergoing the procedure, 25 patients with early-stage high blood pressure had significantly lower blood pressure than 25 similar patients who underwent a sham chiropractic adjustment. Because patients can't feel the technique, they were unable to tell which group they were in.

X-rays showed that the procedure realigned the Atlas vertebra -- the doughnut-like bone at the very top of the spine -- with the spine in the treated patients, but not in the sham-treated patients.

Compared to the sham-treated patients, those who got the real procedure saw an average 14 mm Hg greater drop in systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure count), and an average 8 mm Hg greater drop in diastolic blood pressure (the bottom blood pressure number).

None of the patients took blood pressure medicine during the eight-week study.

"When the statistician brought me the data, I actually didn't believe it. It was way too good to be true," Bakris says. "The statistician said, 'I don't even believe it.' But we checked for everything, and there it was."

Bakris and colleagues report their findings in the advance online issue of the Journal of Human Hypertension.

Atlas Adjustment and Hypertension

The procedure calls for adjustment of the C-1 vertebra. It's called the Atlas vertebra because it holds up the head, just as the titan Atlas holds up the world in Greek mythology.

Marshall Dickholtz Sr., DC, of the Chiropractic Health Center, in Chicago, is the 84-year-old chiropractor who performed all the procedures in the study. He calls the Atlas vertebra "the fuse box to the body."

"At the base of the brain are two centers that control all the muscles of the body. If you pinch the base of the brain -- if the Atlas gets locked in a position as little as a half a millimeter out of line -- it doesn't cause any pain but it upsets these centers," Dickholtz tells WebMD.

The subtle adjustment is practiced by the very small subgroup of chiropractors certified in National Upper Cervical Chiropractic (NUCCA) techniques. The procedure employs precise measurements to determine a patient's Atlas vertebra alignment. If realignment is deemed necessary, the chiropractor uses his or her hands to gently manipulate the vertebra.

"We are not doctors. We are spinal engineers," Dickholtz says. "We use mathematics, geometry, and physics to learn how to slide everything back into place."

What does this have to do with high blood pressure pressure?

Bakris notes that some researchers have suggested that injury to the Atlas vertebra can affect blood flow in the arteries at the base of the skull. Dickholtz thinks the misaligned Atlas triggers release of signals that make the arteries contract. Whether the procedure actually fixes such injuries is unknown, Bakris says.

Bakris began the study after a fellow doctor told him that something strange was happening in his family practice. The doctor had been sending some of his patients to a chiropractor. Some of these patients had high blood pressure. 

Yet after seeing the chiropractor, the patients' blood pressure had normalized -- and a few of them were able to stop taking their blood pressure medications.

So Bakris, then at Rush University, designed the pilot study with 50 patients. He's now organizing a much bigger clinical trial.

"Is it going to be for everybody with high blood pressure? No," Bakris says. "We clearly need to identify those who can benefit. It is pretty clear that some kind of head or neck trauma early in life is related to this. This is really a work in progress. It is certainly in the early stages of research."

Dickholtz has been teaching, practicing, and studying the NUCCA technique for 50 years. He says high blood pressure is far from the only thing an Atlas misalignment causes.

"On the other hand, if people have high blood pressure, there is a tremendous possibility they need an Atlas adjustment," he says.

 

 

Author: www.WebMD.com Health News by Daniel J. DeNoon
Source: Rush University Hypertension Center Chicago IL
Copyright: Journal Of Human Hypertension 3


page toppage toppage top




Chiropractic Care Shown To Be Cost Effective

Looking for effective, safe and affordable care to treat those aches and pains? New research indicates chiropractic care could be the answer. A group of scientists recently published a study to determine whether chiropractic treatment was linked with lower healthcare costs for older patients with low back pain. The study looked at more than 72,000 patients ages 66 and older to determine whether chiropractic treatment was a good option. The results determined that older patients who used chiropractic therapy for lower back pain had lower overall healthcare costs along with shorter pain episodes. The cost of care per episode day was also lower. Those who combined convention medical care with chiropractic care also saw lower costs of care. Interestingly, the cost of treatment was higher for people who did not use any chiropractic treatment at all. The findings show that chiropractic care alone or used in conjunction with other forms of care are a cost effective, viable method for those who want to manage and lessen their pain.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: JMPT February 2016 Volume 39, Issue 2, Pages 63–75.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2016


page toppage toppage top




Obesity Grows Around The World

In early 2016, the global population totaled more than 640 million obese people. These new totals now show that more than half the world is overweight. This increase in obesity means that one in seven women and one in 10 men are obese, with a body mass index of more than 30 (overweight is 25). During the last 40 years, the average male BMI has risen from 21.7 to 24.2 while females saw a rise from 22.1 to 24.4. That totals to an average of 3.3 pounds gained per decade. The study looked at almost 20 million adults worldwide. It's an epidemic that has seen worldwide attention as countries address food labeling practices, food pricing, taxes on unhealthy foods, and government nutrition recommendations. At the same time, many of the world's poorest are underweight, suffering from a lack of food. Obesity can have both health and economic effects. As healthcare costs rise, problems due to an unhealthy weight can affect the economic stability of millions of households. But it doesn't have to be this way. Leading a healthy lifestyle with plenty of exercise and a smart diet can allow you to live a longer and better life.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: Reuters, online March 31, 2016.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2016


page toppage toppage top




Research Says Fitness Trackers May Not Be Accurate

Fitness trackers are exploding in popularity, tracking everything from heart rate to steps taken. But a new study from the National Institute of Health and Nutrition in Tokyo shows that this technology isn't always accurate at tracking energy expenditure. Researchers tested 12 fitness trackers against current methods of detecting energy expenditure. The results suggest that these trackers can both under and overestimate energy expenditure, sometimes by hundreds of calories. Some devices underestimated calories burned by almost 600 calories while others overestimated by around 200. Researchers say it is possible the trackers are inaccurate due to people taking them off during the day. For people who use fitness trackers to make health decisions based on fitness level, both over and underestimates can be harmful. Those trying to lose weight could be actually burning too few calories. Those watching their activity levels due to heart problems may be too active. There’s not much research on trackers yet, and devices could vary from brand to brand. Either way, people using fitness trackers to make health decisions should be cautious about relying too much on device data.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: JAMA Internal Medicine, online March 21, 2016.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2016


page toppage toppage top






Articles 1-4 of 4 << first < previous next > last >