Pleased with Our Vacation Trip to Spain

If you travel to Spain, see the sights in a taxi. Don’t try to drive in a foreign country unless you live there and speak the language and read it. Those universal road signs are not impossible to misinterpret. I drove in Great Britain once just to see what it was like to drive on the wrong side of the road. If you want a great cab service in Alicante, Spain, then this site for My Taxi Alicante is your best option. I like it that the drivers speak English. I am lousy at saying the words I need to get by in faraway places. I took some French and Spanish in high school, but I have forgotten it all.

It is actually a privilege that English is the language of commerce. It makes it so much easier for me to be able to travel. My wife can speak a little Spanish, but there are so many dialects. The Spanish she speaks is more what you would hear in Mexico. I have imagined what it would be like if the whole world spoke one language. Continue reading


Here’s What You Should Know About Payday Loans

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Sometimes you may feel stressed about spending your debts in the week? Do you have tried every little thing? Perhaps you have tried out a pay day loan? A cash advance can present you with the cash you need to shell out charges at the moment, and you may pay for the personal loan way back in increments. However, there is something you have to know. Read on for guidelines to help you through the method.

Look at all the pay day loan possibilities before choosing a payday loan. While most loan companies need repayment in 14 time, there are some loan companies who now offer a thirty day expression which could meet your requirements greater. Different payday loan lenders could also offer different settlement alternatives, so choose one that meets your requirements.

Make certain you keep a copy of your payday advance deal. As a result, if anything fails, you will have composed evidence of the terminology that you simply consented to. Payday loan businesses occasionally make some mistakes, like consuming dollars from your bank account ahead of the decided payback time. Therefore, it is important that there is a duplicate of the payday loan contract, to help you question any blunders.

Payday cash loans can be a high priced method to get cash that you desire. You should think of asking for an progress through your task chances are it will be much less pricey, and it might be less difficult than you imagine. Just talk with your human being solutions office to obtain the details, you will end up really glad you probably did.

For those who have been ripped off from a payday loan firm, do your best to let it be recognized all over the net. As you could be unable to get your money back, you can help others by preventing them from falling into the very same trap that you do.

When you take out a pay day loan, talk to any family or friends participants which have already done so. Inquire further with regards to their experiences and discover which paycheck loan company they picked. The more investigation you need to do ahead of time, the greater your chances is to prevent getting into further more financial difficulty.

Know when your pay day loan is due. It is extremely crucial that you usually do not speculate for this time, since in case you are even a day late, you could wind up with huge fees and penalties. Read every one of the small print on the papers, and try everything it is possible to to cover the loan back again inside the right time period.

Be sure you are aware how a lot more service fees you incur, when you choose to “rollover” the loan. You might think you will be providing yourself much more time to pay the financing rear, but you are also experiencing far more charges on your own bank account. Question what fees are participating, within a roll-over before you do 1.

To economize towards your payday advance, attempt selling goods from your own home you in no way use any more through websites like eBay and Amazon online. Although you may not think you have many useful things to offer, you almost certainly do. Look through your reserve series, disc selection, along with other electronic devices. Even when you could only make a pair hundred bucks, it might nevertheless help.

1 important hint for anyone searching to take out a payday advance is not really to take the 1st offer you get. Payday cash loans are certainly not all alike and while they normally have awful interest rates, there are many that are better than other people. See what sorts of provides you can get and then choose the best one.

Examine the restrictions with regards to payday loans in the status where you reside. Some suggests do not allow online payday loans, due to the incredibly high interest rates that, are area of the financial loan arrangement. These states think that as well as the predatory character from the payday cash loans, in addition they encourage inadequate fiscal practices, inside the consumers who use them.

Will not lie about your income in order to qualify for a cash advance. This is not a good idea because they will give you a lot more than you may easily afford to spend them back again. For that reason, you will wind up in a even worse financial predicament than that you were previously in.

Mainly Because It was mentioned at the start of this informative article, a payday advance can be what you require if you are currently short on funds. However, make certain you are familiar with payday loans really are about. This article is intended to assist you in making sensible pay day loan alternatives.


low vitamin D levels increase risk of preeclampsia during pregnancy

Getting the right nutrients and eating well when you’re pregnant or breastfeeding is vital to your baby’s growth and development. If you don’t get enough vitamin D, the baby’s bones can become soft and more vulnerable to breakage and rickets. Breastfeeding provides the baby with the most nutrients, including most vitamins and minerals, and foods gets their nutrients from healthy soil. So, how do you know what you’re getting if it comes from polluted soil? How do you know if you’re getting any vitamin D at all from your food? Do you need an organic supplement? These questions MUST be answered.

Possibly the most important strategy for healthy bones is a diet full of high-quality, organic, biodynamic and locally grown food. This naturally increases your bone density and decreases risk of developing osteoporosis. The opposite of this food is processed food and food that is grown using pesticides, insecticides and herbicides. Pest killers kill nutrition in food immediately, and GMO means that there is pesticide growing in the seeds! GMO can be equated with dead food and dead soil, so guess what? No vitamin D inside. What does that mean for pregnant women?

If the pregnant mother is not getting enough vitamin D for herself, then the baby may not be getting any at all. This is something crucial to consider. Does the breast milk still contain vitamin D? How is vitamin D removed from typical American diets and common foods that would otherwise contain it and provide it in a useful form to humans? Most women in the U.S. do NOT get enough vitamin D when they are pregnant, and that is a cold, hard fact. If a pregnant women is obese, spends a lot of time indoors or covers up well outside in the sun, or if she is dark-skinned, her chances go way up for vitamin D deficiency. If the baby could hold up a little sign for the sonogram, it would say, “Mom please take more vitamin D!” (http://wn.com)

What exactly is preeclampsia?

Preeclampsia is a condition in pregnancy characterized by high blood pressure, sometimes with fluid retention and abnormal quantities of protein in the urine, which can indicate damage to the kidneys. Even a slight increase in blood pressure may be a sign of preeclampsia and, if left untreated, can lead to complications for both mother and baby, even fatal complications. Preeclampsia is most common during the first pregnancy.

Women with a body mass index (BMI) greater than 30% are more susceptible, and those over 40 or under 18 years of age. Preeclampsia affects between 5 and 8% of pregnancies and may be responsible, along with other related disorders, for the deaths of over 75,000 mothers and half a million babies per year. It is typically rapidly progressing, and many care providers wait too long to address the problem appropriately, if ever. Maybe a naturopathic physician would be better suited to meet with expecting mothers and talk about preeclampsia concerns and organic vitamin D levels for the mother AND her baby that’s on the way. (http://www.fao.org)

The “complicated” subject of how much vitamin D you should take

Doctors and scientists just can’t seem to agree on how much vitamin D a pregnant women could take and NOT have to come back for healthcare visits every month forever. Repeat business is a sensitive subject in the medical industry, and Big Pharma skates on thin ice by recommending supplements that actually save lives. Of course, you will never see a commercial that tells pregnant women to examine their vitamin D levels, but you will see commercials for commercial vitamin D supplements that are dead and useless, so women will think that they are supplementing when they’re really eating “other ingredients.”

Here is an interesting list from different organizations in the United States of the current recommendations for vitamin D levels for pregnant women:

Vitamin D Council: 4,000-6,000 IU per day
Endocrine Society: 1,500-2,000 IU per day
Food and Nutrition Board: 600 per day

The Vitamin D Council recently raised the recommended dose of daily vitamin D (including the upper limit) for adults, teens, children and infants. Common vitamin D deficiencies have finally been recognized by the Vitamin D Council! How long did that take? So, then, let’s take something supposedly “complicated” and make it fairly simple by examining the DETRIMENTAL health effects from a lack of vitamin D and shed some light on this common yet solvable issue: (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)

• Vitamin D affects your genetic code and works to treat and heal a variety of diseases.

• Research recognizes links between vitamin D deficiency and mental disorders like schizophrenia.

• Vitamin D deficiency plays into early autism symptoms.

• Weaning toddlers from formula to “dead” juices and GMO milk can totally eliminate vitamin D intake.

• Most conventional infant formulas contain no usable vitamin D.

Conclusion: Organic vitamin D is essential

If you don’t buy organic vitamin D, you could be buying dead vitamins that have been killed by pesticides, processing plants and synthetic manipulation. Big Pharma loves to sell health enthusiasts dead vitamins, conning them into believing that their bodies are safe and protected from whatever they researched online and tried to defend against. If you don’t buy organic vitamins, you are most likely buying vitamins that are made by the same companies that manufacture vaccines and flu shots, full of toxic “adjuvants” and “emulsifiers” that create toxins in your blood, your brain and your central nervous system.

If you are looking to supplement, you must find quality vitamins to suit your body’s holistic functioning. Look for high-quality prenatal vitamin/mineral supplements, organic omega-3 fatty acid supplements with DHA, and organic probiotics. Ladies, be smart, organic consumers and be sure to keep BOTH humans healthy and out of “harm’s way.”


consuming peanuts during pregnancy may lower offspring’s risk of peanuts allergies

As the rate of childhood peanut allergies in the United States population has more than tripled from 0.4% in 1997 to 1.4% in 2008, it was widely recommended (until 2008) for some expecting mothers to abstain from eating peanuts during their pregnancy and while nursing. A recent 2013 study published in JAMA Pediatrics helps illustrate the positive effects of a mother’s consumption of peanuts/tree nuts. This study indicates that a higher consumption of peanuts and tree nuts during pregnancy was associated with a lower offspring risk of developing the corresponding allergies.

In the Western hemisphere, peanut allergies affects 1% – 2% of the entire population, typically beginning during early childhood. Previous research has pointed at the mother’s consumption of peanuts during pregnancy and while nursing as greatly affecting whether the child will develop peanut allergies. A 2010 study with 503 infant participants demonstrated this association. Likewise, a much smaller (n = 43) South African study also indicated this association between a mother’s peanut consumption and the child developing these allergies.

New research indicates expecting mother’s peanut consumption can be helpful

The 2013 JAMA Pediatrics study paints a very different picture. The cohort study (n = 10,907) demonstrated that a child has a significantly lower risk of developing peanut/tree nut allergies if the nonallergic mother consumes peanuts/tree nuts more often (five times a month compared to less than one time a month) during the pregnancy. This group of women was also more likely to introduce peanuts/tree nuts at a much younger age then allergic mothers. While there are potential limitations in this survey-cohort study (due to the exclusion of paternal allergies, other diet considerations and offspring introduction of peanuts/tree nuts at different ages), the authors indicated that these limitations were statistically controlled for. A 2009 study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology supports this idea by indicating that it might not be a mother’s consumption of peanuts during pregnancy that correlates to a child’s allergic state but, instead, environmental exposure.

Previous research was thought to be relatively conclusive, causing the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2000 to recommend that pregnant mothers who had a family history of peanut allergies avoid their consumption for fear of their offspring developing the allergy. By 2008, this recommendation was withdrawn due to new studies indicating the opposite. The authors of the 2013 study indicate that this is the first human study to their knowledge that illustrates how a mother’s consumption of peanuts or tree nuts is correlated with a reduced risk of these allergies in their offspring, but more controlled studies are needed to replicate and verify these findings.


exposure to nicotine in womb raises obesity risk

Not smoking or drinking during pregnancy is one of those “everyone knows” affairs. But not everyone abides by those rules. Health Canada estimates that around 20% of expectant mothers continue smoking.

And some that do abide use nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), which could be in the form of a gum, lozenges, sprays or transdermal patches.

A Canadian research team located primarily at the University of Western Ontario with support from researchers at McMaster University, both in Canada, decided to look into the mechanics of nicotine’s effects via an animal study.

They used female Wistar rats separated into two groups. The control group received saline-only injections daily while the test group was injected with nicotine bitartrate at the rate of 1 mg/kg of body weight, replicating the average intake of a human cigarette smoker or one who is using NRT to kick the habit.

The study’s focus was to investigate if nicotine exposure during pregnancy and lactation leads to alterations in hepatic (liver) triglyceride synthesis. The injections of both nicotine for the test group and saline for the control group continued from two weeks prior to mating to after weaning.

180 days after birth

Since this was a prospective study, which looks for future results of possible consequences from a particular substance within a specific group, 180 days after the offspring were birthed they were examined for health effects as compared with the control group.

At the 180th postnatal day, the male offspring exposed to nicotine “exhibited significantly elevated levels of circulating and hepatic triglycerides.” This was a consequence of fatty acid synthase.

Synthase is defined as “an enzyme that catalyzes the linking together of two molecules, esp. without the direct involvement of ATP.”

The researchers backtracked to determine the cascading sequence of biochemical processes that led to the liver hypertriglyceridemia in the rats’ livers whose mothers were exposed to nicotine just before pregnancy, during pregnancy and while lactating. They carefully charted those sequences that lead to genetic influences in the offspring.

So due to both gene transcription control interruptions and epigenetic developments, the offspring were mutated to have a predisposition toward obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular issues. Epigentics deals with changes in gene functions from external factors, while transcription is involved with when and how often the gene is transcribed.

In other words, as with any substance that affects a fetus, the parents’ natural genetic state does not contribute to their offspring’s unhealthy development, but the substances taken during pregnancy affect the offspring’s genetics toward worse health than if those substances were not there.

The study conclusion

“Collectively, these findings suggest that nicotine exposure during pregnancy and lactation leads to an increase in circulating and hepatic triglycerides long-term via changes in the transcriptional and epigenetic regulation of the hepatic lipogenic pathway.”

Whatever a woman takes in during pregnancy can create a genetic issue for predisposing the child to a myriad of health issues. Considering our toxic environment, doesn’t this at least partly explain the current early childhood epidemic of obesity and diabetes along with autoimmune diseases flourishing among children as never before?

Consider this: the study only examined the effects of nicotine, which can also come from NRT (nicotine replacement therapy). Cigarettes contain 600 added chemicals to enable nicotine free basing or a nicotine crack pipe effect that leads to 4,000 potential chemical toxins in cigarette smoke. Nicotine alone is not the entire issue.

One of the study’s authors, Daniel Hardy, while acknowledging that cigarettes are worse then NRT, recommends raising one’s folic acid levels during pregnancy as a possible antidote if one was or is using NRT or smoking.

However, folic acid supplements can be hazardous. It’s better to consume more natural folates in foods and supplements than synthetic folic acid supplements.


taking antidepressants during pregnancy double child’s autism risk

Antidepressant medications like SSRIs detach users from reality by modifying neurotransmitter levels of serotonin. According to a new study, if these brain chemistry manipulators are taken during pregnancy, they may also detach offspring from reality, inviting newborns into a new age of autism spectrum disorders.

Today, the emergence of autism spectrum disorders continues to expand, now affecting 1 in 68 births, representing a society bathed in neurotoxins and mind-altering chemicals.

Researchers are now attempting to isolate the causes of autism spectrum disorders. Prenatal use of antidepressant medications may pose one of the greatest risk factors for autism spectrum disorders as confirmed by a study from Drexel University.

The team of Drexel researchers investigated large population-based registers between 1997 and 2006. The total number of pregnancies studied was 750,000.

In the study, two categories of pregnant women were evaluated. Both groups of women were reportedly depressed during pregnancy. The factors for depression could have included stress, malnutrition, life situations or toxin overload. The difference between the groups of women was that one group faced their depression naturally without taking SSRIs; the other group departed from reality and succumbed to SSRI antidepressant medications during pregnancy.

SSRIs during pregnancy increase autism rates in offspring twofold

When the researchers investigated the births of these women, they found that those who chose the SSRIs during pregnancy gave birth to autistic children at a rate of 1.5 percent. For those women who dealt with their depression naturally, only 0.7 percent of their offspring were diagnosed in the autism spectrum disorder. These data show that antidepressant medication use during pregnancy can increase offspring risk of autism by twofold!

“We found a two-fold increased risk for ASD associated with in utero exposure to SSRIs compared to the unexposed reference group” said lead author Nicole Gidaya, PhD. “More importantly, in our analysis we accounted for under-reporting of maternal depression in the register. This suggests that under-reporting of the confounder, maternal depression, may be a limitation in approaches previously used in the other studies.”

By prohibiting SSRI use during pregnancy, healthcare professionals could potentially lower autism rates across the board by 50 percent. Still, researchers warn that other environmental toxins may be involved and that a combination of factors may be perpetuating the mothers’ depression and subsequent offspring autism levels.

“As we complete research in our attempts to understand autism’s causes we continue to realize that there are likely many genetic and non-genetic contributors,” said Craig Newschaffer, PhD, director of the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute, a professor at Drexel’s School of Public Health and the study’s senior author. “We must begin trying to map these multiple risk factors on to common pathways, so that these pathways can be a focus in our effort to prevent the impairment associated with ASD. Pathways involving the brain’s serotonin system are still one viable candidate.”

Depression changes brain chemistry and is a natural part of life; SSRIs damage one’s ability to cope and heal naturally

Depression among all the women in the study, whether under-reported or over-reported, indicates other factors that may be associated with autism. Imbalanced hormones, due to synthetic chemicals, phthalates and fragrances, may cause depression in women and be another risk factor for autism. Neurotoxins like mercury may be limiting a person’s cognitive function, stressing brain chemistry and forcing the mind to undergo changes as the brain adapts. This could be caused by a simple flu shot, which has been confirmed for delivering 51,000 parts per billion of mercury directly into the bloodstream.

During troubling and stressful times, a person’s brain may go through changes too, naturally offsetting serotonin levels. Those levels can return naturally as the person lives through the experience. Through artificial manipulation of serotonin levels with antidepressant medications, the brain is thrown out of its natural state of coping with reality. To adapt to the sudden chemical changes, the brain has to work harder and in unfamiliar ways. The person may experience other side effects as it tries to cope by normalizing brain chemistry. A person may become suicidal or detached from reality during this time as the antidepressant medications exacerbate mental stressors, chemical imbalances and coping mechanisms.

When SSRIs are introduced during pregnancy, these manipulations can be multiplied in utero, affecting the developing brain of the baby. It’s not hard to see why these SSRIs could cause a child to be born into the autism spectrum, since these medications modify neurotransmitter levels of serotonin at such a vulnerable time of fetal development.


healthy diet before pregnancy significantly lowers risk of having preterm birth later

New research conducted at the University of Adelaide and published in The Journal of Nutrition has shown that women who consumed a poor diet before conceiving had roughly 50 percent higher risk of having a preterm birth as compared to those who ate a healthy diet. This is the first piece of research to look at what women ate before becoming pregnant and how it affected birth outcomes.

Preterm birth

Preterm birth (delivery before 37 weeks of pregnancy) has been linked to significant short and long-term negative health effects. Almost 3 out of every 4 newborn deaths are linked to preterm delivery.

“Preterm birth is a leading cause of infant disease and death and occurs in approximately one in 10 pregnancies globally. Anything we can do to better understand the conditions that lead to preterm birth will be important in helping to improve survival and long-term health outcomes for children,” said Dr Jessica Grieger, the leader of the research team.

Study findings

The research team from the university’s Robinson Research Institute had looked at the eating habits of over 300 women in South Australia. They found that women who had diets consistently abundant in protein and fruits before conception had a lower chance of having a preterm birth. On the other hand, those whose diets were high in fats, sugars and takeaways were about 50% more at risk of preterm births.

“In our study, women who ate protein-rich foods including lean meats, fish and chicken, as well as fruit, whole grains and vegetables, had significantly lower risk of preterm birth. On the other hand, women who consumed mainly discretionary foods, such as takeaway, potato chips, cakes, biscuits, and other foods high in saturated fat and sugar were more likely to have babies born preterm,” said Dr Grieger.

Diet during pregnancy important too

Of course, what a pregnant lady eats during pregnancy is also very important. Another study published earlier in 2014 in the British Medical Journal had revealed that pregnant ladies who consumed a “prudent” diet containing good amounts of fruits, vegetables and whole grains and who drank water had a markedly lower risk of preterm delivery. The researchers from Iceland, Norway and Sweden also found that a “traditional” diet of boiled potatoes, cooked vegetables and fish was associated with significantly reduced risk as well.

“It is important to consume a healthy diet before as well as during pregnancy to support the best outcomes for the mum and baby,” added Dr Grieger.

The bottom line

A woman who wishes to have a healthy pregnancy and to give birth to a healthy child needs to consume a healthy diet. This applies to both during and before pregnancy. A well-balanced and varied diet containing lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains, beans, legumes, healthy protein and water is recommended. At the same time, the consumption of high-fat, sugary and processed food should be cut down, if not ceased altogether. Organic foods are preferable, while non-organic produce should be washed to remove toxic chemical residues.

Another key point — it is never too late to make positive dietary changes.

“Diet is an important risk factor that can be modified. It is never too late to make a positive change. We hope our work will help promote a healthy diet before and during pregnancy. This will help to reduce the number of neonatal deaths and improve the overall health of children,” Dr Grieger also said.


using antidepressants while pregnant raises child’s risk of obesity, diabetes and more

New research from McMaster University in Canada has uncovered a correlation between fluoxetine, a chemical in popular antidepressants like Prozac, and pregnant woman.

Researchers recently discovered that pregnant women on antidepressants could be unknowingly jeopardizing the health of their unborn infants by predisposing them to obesity and type 2 diabetes later in life. PhD student Nicole De Long presented the research findings at the International Society of Endocrinology and The Endocrine Society:

“We have demonstrated for the first time in an animal model that maternal use of a class of antidepressants called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, or SSRIs, resulted in increased fat accumulation and inflammation in the liver of the adult offspring, raising new concerns about the long-term metabolic complications in children born to women who take SSRI antidepressants during pregnancy.”

Amazingly, although the study (in vivo) found that SSRI use during pregnancy was indeed correlated with fatty liver and other metabolic complications in adult offspring, no warnings or recommendations were issued advising pregnant women to avoid antidepressants during pregnancy!

Currently in the U.S, as many as 20 percent of pregnant women are prescribed antidepressants. Yet, how many of these pregnant women are adequately informed by their doctors about the potentially devastating health risks associated with antidepressant use during pregnancy?

How many of these women are aware of safe, effective, non-toxic options for treating depression during pregnancy?

More reasons pregnant women should never use antidepressants

Antidepressants increase miscarriages
Recent studies have found that pregnant women who used antidepressants were 68 percent more likely to have a miscarriage compared to pregnant women who did not take antidepressants (http://www.naturalnews.com).

Emotional disorders
A study demonstrated that serotonin exposure in young mice impaired their cerebral development, while other researchers have raised concerns regarding the correlation of SSRI medication use by pregnant women and young children due to the increased risk of emotional disorders later in life.

Antidepressants don’t work
Irving Kirsh, an Associate Director of the Program in Placebo Studies and a lecturer in medicine at the Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center reviewed unpublished studies that clearly showed positive antidepressant results were the same as placebos.

No doubt direct-to-consumer advertising (DTC) campaigns greatly fueled the public demand for Big Pharma’s antidepressant “miracle” pills. The
often repeated claim was simple: depression could be alleviated by correcting a chemical imbalance in the brain caused by a deficiency of serotonin, a brain chemical (neurotransmitter) responsible for that feel good feeling.

Judging by the numbers these campaigns were very successful. Approximately one in 10 Americans over the age of 12 are on antidepressants!

The chemical imbalance theory is now so deeply embedded in popular culture that it’s not unusual to hear people talking openly about their need to “boost serotonin levels”.

From an article titled “The Chemical Imbalance Myth” by Chris Kresser, a
licensed acupuncturist and practitioner of integrative medicine: “This clear and easy-to-follow theory is the driving force behind the $12 billion worth of antidepressant drugs sold each year.”

But there is a major problem with this theory: there is absolutely no evidence to support it. Kresser continued, “Recent reviews of the research have demonstrated no link between depression or any other mental disorder and an imbalance of chemicals in the brain …”

Adverse side effects

Not only are antidepressants ineffective, they come loaded with a host of serious and negative side effects including: dizziness, impotence, insomnia, gastrointestinal bleeding, weight gain, thickening of the arteries, permanent brain damage, increased suicide risk and violent behavior in both children and adults.

Other studies confirm that antidepressant use during pregnancy is not only harmful but can be life threatening. Some examples are: Serotonin Syndrome, Epileptiform Discharges, Epileptic Seizures and/or Epilepsy, Hypoglycaemia/Hyperglycemia, Stroke/Hemorrhagic Syndromes, Frontal Lobe Syndrome, Tardive Dyskinesia/Dystonia, Parkinsonism, Akathisia, Mania, etc.

Here are several studies for these serious ailments, mostly for offspring, from antidepressant use during pregnancy (http://www.antidepressantsfacts.com/LongTermSSRI.htm).


harmful blood thinner injection prescribed to many pregnant women found to be ineffective

Since the 1990s, under the advice of their physicians, one in 10 pregnant women have been painfully injecting themselves in the stomach with a needle containing anticoagulant medicine that has now been found to be completely ineffective.

For the treatment of thrombophilia, abnormal blood clotting in the veins or arteries, 10 percent of women have been prescribed the anticoagulant low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) to prevent pregnancy complications caused by placenta blood clots, according to the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.

Research conducted by Dr. Marc Rodger, a senior scientist at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute who heads up the Thrombosis Program at the Ottawa Hospital, proves that LMWH is completely ineffective and may even cause “minor” harm to pregnant women.

Dr. Roger’s study will be published in a future print issue of The Lancet, one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious medical journals. The journal will detail research that involved 12 years of clinical trials and nearly 300 women in five different countries.

His experiment discovered that pregnant women who injected LMWH into their stomachs received “no positive benefits for the mother or child” and instead, in some cases, harmed the pregnancy by increasing the rates of induced labor, increasing bleeding and reducing patient’s access to anesthesia during childbirth.

“These results mean that many women around the world can save themselves a lot of unnecessary pain during pregnancy,” said Dr. Rodger, who is also a professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Ottawa.

“Using low molecular weight heparin unnecessarily medicalizes a woman’s pregnancy and is costly.”

Pregnant women unnecessarily stabbed their stomachs with needles, some of them on a daily basis

The pregnant women unfortunate enough to have been prescribed LMWH suffered physical and emotional trauma.

Allison McIntosh, a 34-year-old lawyer with the Department of Justice in Ottawa, was one of thousands of women who were told that injecting LMWH during her pregnancy would increase her chances of carrying a child to term.

McIntosh, who had suffered from two prior miscarriages, was hopeful that LMWH injections would help her third pregnancy, so she spent two-and-a-half months pricking herself with a needle every day, only for the medicine to fail, resulting in a third miscarriage.

“It was difficult after realizing that the injections didn’t work,” said McIntosh.

“I thought that I was doing something to make a difference by giving myself the injections. I kind of lost hope after that experience.”

McIntosh didn’t give up, and she got pregnant a fourth time, this time foregoing LMWH treatments. When she heard about Dr. Roger’s research, she wasn’t surprised that the drug failed her.

“I feel sad for other people who are going through that process,” said McIntosh, who is now six months along in her latest pregnancy. “It can be disillusioning for people if those injections are their only hope.”

Amy Mills, a 35-year-old mother of two young children from Bancroft, Ontario, participated in Dr. Roger’s study after finding out she was prone to developing blood clots.

Mills gave herself more than 400 needles full of the anticoagulant medication, often twice a day throughout her pregnancy, which resulted in pain and severe abdominal bruising.

“It hurt each and every time I injected myself,” said Mills.

“Most women are proud to show their pregnancy belly, but not me. There was so much bruising I had to keep covered up,” she admitted.

“Dr. Rodger’s findings will benefit many women in many countries who will be spared from hundreds of unnecessary and painful injections,” said Dr. Duncan Stewart, chief executive officer and scientific director of the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute.

“They also underscore the importance of conducting rigorous, well-designed clinical trials, something we pride ourselves on at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute,” added Dr. Stewart, who is also vice-president of research at the Ottawa Hospital and a professor of medicine at the University of Ottawa.


men’s testosterone levels determined in mother’s womb

If you are a man, the odds are stacked against you. Today’s world is a literal toxic minefield of feminizing chemicals like bisphenol A (BPA) and fluoride that overload men’s systems with estrogen, potentially leading to low testosterone. And a new study has revealed that men’s exposure to such chemicals while in the womb can permanently alter their baseline testosterone levels as adults, leading to a lifetime of hormone-induced health problems.

A team of scientists from the Medical Research Council Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland made the discovery after undertaking an investigation into why some men have much higher testosterone levels than other men, even when living relatively similar lifestyles as adults. Recognizing that high testosterone is essential for men’s physical and mental health, the researchers decided to take a closer look at how this hormone is affected during pregnancy.

They looked specifically at Leydig cells, which live in men’s testes and begin generating the testosterone hormone at puberty. The only way these cells are able to function properly is if the stem cells from which they are derived — these stem cells are imparted by the mother during pregnancy — are exposed to the proper amounts of testosterone in her womb.

Men’s Leydig cells don’t work as well when mother is exposed to too much estrogen

As it turns out, men whose mothers do not have proper testosterone levels during pregnancy tend to inherit lower-functioning Leydig cells later, resulting in reduced production of this necessary hormone throughout their lives. Consequently, many of these men end up suffering from perpetual hormonal imbalance, which makes them more prone to obesity, diabetes, heart disease and even mental illness.

“There is increasing evidence that a mother’s diet, lifestyle and exposure to drugs and chemicals can have a significant impact on testosterone levels in the womb,” stated Professor Richard Sharpe, one of the study’s lead authors. “We need a better grasp of these factors so that we can give reliable advice to pregnant women to protect the health of her unborn child.”

Avoid soy, BPA, thermal paper receipts and conventional meat and dairy to reduce estrogen risk

The study is the first of its kind to delineate a connection between fetal exposure to inadequate testosterone and decreased testosterone levels during adulthood. Though discouraging in its findings, the paper draws attention to the need for women to have their hormone levels checked before and throughout their pregnancies, and to pay close attention to what they eat and touch.

Soy, for instance, is loaded with toxic phytoestrogens that science has linked to causing endocrine disruption. Pregnant women who consume soy milk and other soy-based products are exposing their unborn children to these same hormone-mimicking chemicals, which are stacked on top of the already high levels of estrogen naturally produced during pregnancy.

Touching thermal paper receipts and drinking out of plastic bottles is another source of estrogenic chemicals that can change a woman’s hormone levels, and thus her unborn child’s hormone levels. Virtually any estrogenic substance a pregnant woman is exposed to during pregnancy has the potential to alter the genetic blueprint of her unborn child, especially when that child is a boy.

“These studies highlight how a key component of male reproductive development can fundamentally reprogram adult hormone production (through an epigenetic change), which might affect lifetime disease risk,” wrote the researchers.