1. Crazy new ER plan for stroke: BEAT the CLOCK!

    Remember Alan Funt?

    People would find themselves in the most absurd situations… then be asked to smile, because YOU’RE on “CANDID CAMERA!”

    This comic genius was crippled by a stroke in ’93, then died a few years later…

    So you gotta believe he’d just LOVE the kooky irony of the latest stroke “treatment.”

    It sounds like a wild idea he would’ve cooked up in his prime!

    Picture it…

    You’re RUSHED into the ER after a stroke – except docs have turned the whole thing into a game, complete with a clock and a buzzer.

    Your stroke is being treated like a game – with your LIFE being treated as the prize!

    And this absolutely CRAZY idea could be coming to an emergency room near you!

    The new stroke game… where the stakes are your LIFE

    The new plan is like a classic “beat the clock” game.

    As crazy as that sounds, they actually tested it out in a hospital in Germany -- with a big clock hovering over the proceedings.

    Like in a game show, docs had to hit a buzzer when they completed certain stroke procedures… such as a neurological exam

    Otherwise an alarm would blare.

    Talk about TENSE!

    Not gonna lie. When the clock was going, it saved a few precious minutes here and there – and those minutes are absolutely critical after a stroke.

    Every second counts!

    But while the timing’s important… it’s the RESULTS that matter most, right?

    And that’s where the clock stops… because there were NO differences in the two most important measures.

    The time to the groin puncture was the same whether the clock was there or not… and 90 days later, outcomes in both groups were the same.

    So much for the clock!

    Yet they said they’re gonna keep testing this out some more.

    And given how much mainstream medicine LOVES goofy gimmicks, I can’t help but think this will be coming soon to a hospital near you.

    The problem is… once you’re in that room with the clock counting down, you don’t exactly have much say in what’s going on.

    You might not even be conscious… much less able to lean over and hit the PAUSE button.

    And you’re certainly not about the smile for a hidden camera.

    So, your best bet is to make sure you’re never a contestant in this freaky ER game show scenario… and save your own life.

    There are 2 great vitamins that can help dramatically cut your risk of stroke… and they’re both DIRT cheap!

    • Folic acid: Talk about an unsung hero! There’s a lot it can do for you, including help prevent a stroke. A study a couple of years ago found folic acid supplements will cut the risk by 10% overall… and as much as 15% if you have high inflammation.
    • Vitamin C: There’s probably nothing humbler… yet few nutrients are as important. C can boost your immune system… protect your heart… and prevent gout flareups. But most people SKIP it, assuming they’re covered (they’re not). Don’t be one of THOSE people. As I shared with you last year, it’ll cut your risk of dying from stroke by 28%.

    Maybe set an alarm to remind yourself to take ’em.

    In Your Corner,

    Dr. Allan Spreen

  2. Manage your blood sugar safely, without Avandia side effects

    Last month, the FDA restricted sales of the diabetes drug Avandia because of Avandia side effects. From now on, you can only get it if you‘ve tried every other drug on the market without success. Or, if you‘re already taking Avandia, you‘ll be allowed to continue to take it as well. (Hopefully, this one doesn‘t apply to you.) But you‘ll have to attest that you understand the serious risks involved...namely that taking Avandia side effects may include increase risk of  having a heart attack and stroke.

    And that risk is nothing to sneeze at. According to a recent New York Times article, "One study estimated that from 1999 to 2009, more than 47,000 people taking Avandia needlessly suffered a heart attack, stroke or heart failure, or died."

    Sensibly, the European Union banned Avandia all together.

    The good news is, in many cases, natural methods can help control your blood sugar. Visit and  search the NorthStar Nutritionals blog and search on blood sugar support and diabetes. You‘ll find numerous articles about how to naturally lower your blood sugar.

    One recent article tells you how men and women with diabetes lowered their fasting blood sugar levels by up to 29 percent in just 40 days without drugs or major changes in their diet. How‘d they do it? Just click here to find out.

  3. Can calcium supplements really give you a heart attack?

    A major new study announced that taking a calcium supplement may raise your heart attack or stroke risk by as much at 30 percent. I know what you're thinking: "Is this really true? Could the pill I take for my bones really be that bad for me?" And the answer is: Yes, calcium can cause serious health problems when taken alone. But I could also argue that shaving your beard is bad for you health because you could cut the carotid artery in your neck. Or walking the dog is bad for your health because you could get hit by a car. Basically, you do anything the wrong way and you can get hurt. So go ahead and shave your beard, walk the dog, and take calcium. Just do it the RIGHT way. Study misses one major fact... Professor Ian Reid and his team from the University of Auckland analyzed data from 15 different randomized trials conducted over the last 20 years. They found that men and women who took calcium supplements did increase their risk of heart attack or stroke by about 30 percent. But to tell you the truth, that stat didn't surprise me. And neither did his other big "discovery": Men and women with high dietary intakes of calcium did not see the same increased risk. In interviews, Reid and his team seem to scratch their heads to explain this conundrum. Why does a calcium supplement appear to raise risk and not a high- calcium meal? They theorize that calcium supplements cause the mineral to collect in your blood...and high-calcium meals do not. And, again, that's true. Taking 500 mg of calcium alone isn't a good thing. Your body can't handle it. In fact, in addition to cardiovascular problems, it can cause problems with your kidneys, GI tract, nervous system, and even your brain! But there's one sure-fire way to solve the calcium problem: Take magnesium with it. And that's the one huge, gigantic, obvious missing piece from Reid's analysis. You see, calcium cannot work in the body without magnesium. Crack the calcium puzzle You body can NOT handle high amounts of calcium on its own. It gets stuck in your blood, soft tissues, and in your kidneys. It also causes hardening of the arterial walls...and eventually cardiovascular events as Reid's meta-analysis showed. That's why I've always recommended taking one part magnesium for every two parts calcium. Magnesium helps your body absorb the calcium so it doesn't collect in your kidneys and soft tissues. By the way, this is taught in every Nutrition 101 course, in nearly every community college across the country. (Clearly, Professor Reid slept through that course.) And truthfully, I'm not sure why manufacturers even sell supplements that only contain calcium. If you've got a bottle, throw it out. Calcium and magnesium naturally work together can you figure out why people from Reid's meta-analysis with a high- calcium diet didn't increase their cardiovascular events risk? You got it: They were also eating a high-magnesium diet. In natural foods, calcium is always paired with magnesium. It's just nature's way of providing us with exactly what we need to stay healthy. Just look up high-calcium foods like broccoli or kale. These foods also contain magnesium. In fact, nature doesn't make a calcium-rich food that doesn't contain magnesium. That is unless it's "fortified with calcium" like homogenized milk and most dairy products on the shelves. So don't get fooled into thinking these products are natural! Professor Reid goes down swinging In interviews, Professor Reid isn't content just bashing calcium. He goes after all supplements: "We have tended to focus on just the benefits of supplements without really looking at their safety. In the future I think we need to look at both the efficacy and the safety of supplements." Well, truthfully, I have to agree with that last thought...but for a different reason. Just because something is natural doesn't mean that it can't also do harm. Supplements are powerful tools and you must learn to use them the right the right amount and combination. That's why it's important to work with a qualified naturopath and keep reading my Guide to Good Health. I'll make sure to point out the landmines and steer you clear of Professor Reids of the world.
  4. Staging a comeback?

    Poor old ginkgo biloba. It’s one of those herbs that skyrocketed into popularity in the 1980s and 90s. Then -- bam -- a few negative studies showing negligible results in treating dementia and ginkgo biloba’s stuck at home on date night eating ice cream with mom, dad, and the cats. Well, I digress. Truth is, ginkgo biloba’s got a lot more going for it than almost anyone in the medical world is willing to admit these days. Anyone except the scientists at Johns Hopkins Institutions, that is. A recent study by Hopkins researchers has shown that supplementing with ginkgo biloba may reduce brain damage and neurobehavioral dysfunction from a stroke by a whopping 50 percent. Of course, their testing was on mice. So they’ve got a ways to go to prove this will work for humans. But the researchers are optimistic. According to researcher Sylvain Dore, “If further work confirms what we‘ve seen, we could theoretically recommend a daily regimen of ginkgo to people at high risk of stroke as a preventive measure against brain damage." How about that for staging a comeback!

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