Prostate Gland Health – Needs Your Concern

Being an important gland of the male body, the Prostate Gland requires being taken care of which is frequently ignored. This carelessness can sometimes prove to be very hazardous. An unhealthy Prostate Gland is one of the great causes responsible for Prostate Cancer. American Urological Association together with the American Cancer Society strongly recommends that older men (including healthy older ones) arrange annual rectal examination programs or PSA tests as soon as a male reaches age 40 and beyond. One must then be very conscious of any hint you could get from the little warning signs of prostate cancer afforded you, and get the necessary medical diagnosis and treatment the soonest time you can.

The prostate problems symptoms include difficulty of urinating – as the urethra where the urine passes is blocked by the enlarged prostate. Can you imagine this situation? You have the urge to urinate but yet you find it hard to take a leak. And if you are able to do so, there is some pain felt in the process. Prostate cancer is the worst prostate problem an older man of 50 or above can get. Not only because the disease is painful could it be emotionally and financially burdensome as well. Prostate cancer shares similar symptoms with other prostate-related problems. Although pain in the lower back and difficulty in ejaculating are some of the symptoms are not present among the other ones.

So keeping in mind the prostate Gland Health, under given are the prescribed conditions required:

Live life to the fullest is one important way to keep you and your health out of reach of the diseases and problems. Keep your body and mind fit. Work out regularly in the gym. Last but not the least has a good sexual relationship with your partner. You may also have a prostate kneading.

A Balanced-Diet for Keeping the Prostate Gland Healthy:

Have a balance diet. Eating fruits do not just give you anti-oxidants; you also get fructose from them. Fructose can stimulate Vitamin D production that will eventually stop the growth of malignant tumors. Absence or the lack of Vitamin D can put high risk of developing cancer cells especially on the prostate.

Because of the consciousness of maintaining a sound health, diet regimens, health-related activities, and supplements are flooding the market today for Prostate Gland health [http://www.prostatecancertreatmenthelp.com/Laser_Prostate_Treatment/]. All these are geared towards the attainment of optimal health, thus quality healthy life years are enjoyed. The Prostate Cancer signs are many, and men should know about it. One should not take it for granted and leave it to time for healing.

Our Health Under Siege From Many Directions – Is Plastic One Of Them?

Welcome to the world of plastic fantastic!

The truth about plastic – and the chances are it’s not what you think it is.

Most of us wouldn’t have given it much thought, after all plastic in many applications is convenient and practical to use.

Are we really aware of all the plastic around us? How involved and committed are we to plastic every minute of our daily life?

Check it out for yourself and try to go for one hour without touching any plastic. I’ll bet you can’t do it, not even for half that time!

First up in the morning you wouldn’t be sitting on your toilet seat or wearing your slippers or house shoes to get there. You are not able to open the en suite or shower door, to grab the shampoo bottle, to brush your teeth, or to do up the buttons on the clothes you are wearing. This is only in the first few minutes after getting out of bed. This is not exactly a good start if you try to avoid plastic!

Let’s see and navigate our way through the kitchen. Switching on the kettle, is it plastic? Check out the door handle on the refrigerator first before getting out the bread and butter that is looking so temptingly good wrapped in plastic. If you had a look inside the refrigerator check the rest of all the eatables. Luck could be on your side to find something not wrapped in plastic.

To make matters worse the phone is ringing. By this time the expression on your face is asking you, is it plastic? Of course it is! Have you had enough? Let’s get out of here; work might be a better place after all.

Grab the remote for the garage door, oops and the car keys as well. Giving up? It’s like a spider – web or cocoon. It’s been woven around us, being surrounded by it and it is hard to escape without cracking the plastic wrapping.

Most people would not be aware of the consequent and danger of plastic we are in contact with every day. We have never been told of all the sneaky health hazards and toxins contained in plastic by any of the authorities or health organisations nor would it ever be publicised.

A chemical such as (BPA) bisphenol also belongs to a chemical called xenoestrogens. All of these chemicals are having the greatest impact on our health. BPA is a by-product and used to make hard clear plastic containers for items such as baby bottles, milk and juice containers, water bottles, microwave oven ware, as well as plastic coating inside metal cans and many eating utensils etc. These toxins and chemicals increase the risk of breast, prostate, and reproductive cancers. It also reduces fertility, immune function and these are just a few out of many of what effect plastic is having to our health.

What can you do about it? Store your food and beverages in glass or stainless steel containers; this would be a good starting point to avoid some of the toxins you would otherwise consume.

Do not heat food in plastic containers or plastic cling wrap. Stay clear from pre prepared micro wave meals readily available from stores by simply pressing that plastic button on your micro wave to warm up this lovely prepared meals wrapped in plastic.

Actually avoid using macro wave ovens when ever possible, or better still don’t use them at all, but that’s another story. Filter your drinking water and only store it in glass bottles or glass containers.

This has been only a short list to become aware of the toxins plastic contain and just a few tips how to avoid some of that plastic fantastic which can do so much damage to our health and wellbeing.

This does not only destroy people’s lives, it also has a huge environmental impact all over the world.

Having talked a little about plastic how we captured by it and how our health being affected, this is after all only a small percentage where sickness can come from.

Also our diet in general is unhealthy with the intake of processed food. G M O genetically modified foods, all these have excessive amount of toxins, a major percentage of crops are genetically engineered of which is no benefit to our health. Most of our vegetables and fruits are grown the same way. Not only our foods been sabotaged. Prescription drug addiction is becoming a big problem in the western world, the overuse and misuse of antibiotics seems an increasing problem coming from the medical profession.

Yes, our health is under siege from many directions not only plastic, therefor we must take control of our own health. Don’t expect anyone else to do it for you, don’t delay it, the beginning should always be today.

Getting Insurance To Pay For Preventive Health Under The ACA

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) mandates that health insurance companies pay for preventive health visits. However, that term is somewhat deceptive, as consumers may feel they can visit the doctor for just a general checkup, talk about anything, and the visit will be paid 100% with no copay. In fact, some, and perhaps most, health insurance companies only cover the A and B recommendations of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. These recommendations cover such topics as providing counseling on smoking cessation, alcohol abuse, obesity, and tests for blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes (for at risk patients), and some cancer screening physical exams. BUT if a patient mentions casually that he or she is feeling generally fatigued, the doctor could write down a diagnosis related to that fatigue and effectively transform the “wellness visit” into a “sick visit.” The same is true if the patient mentions occasional sleeplessness, upset stomach, stress, headaches, or any other medical condition. In order to get the “free preventive health” visit paid for 100%, the visit needs to be confined to a very narrow group of topics that most people will find vert constrained.

Similarly, the ACA calls for insurance companies to pay for preventive colonoscopy screenings for colon cancer. However, once again there is a catch. If the doctor finds any kind of problem during the colonoscopy and writes down a diagnosis code other than “routine preventive health screening,” the insurance company may not, and probably will not, pay for the colonoscopy directly. Instead, the costs would be applied to the annual deductible, which means most patients would get stuck paying for the cost of the screening.

This latter possibility frustrates the intention of the ACA. The law was written to encourage everyone – those at risk as well as those facing no known risk – to get checked. But if people go into the procedure expecting insurance to pay the cost, and then a week later receive a surprise letter indicating they are responsible for the $2,000 – $2,500 cost, it will give people a strong financial disincentive to getting tested.

As an attorney, I wonder how the law could get twisted around to this extent. The purpose of a colonoscopy is determined at the moment an appointment is made, not ex post facto during or after the colonoscopy. If the patient has no symptoms and is simply getting a colonoscopy to screen for colon cancer because the patient has reached age 45 or 50 or 55, then that purpose or intent cannot be negated by subsequent findings of any condition. What if the doctor finds a minor noncancerous infection and notes that on the claim form? Will that diagnosis void the 100% payment for preventive service? If so, it gives patients a strong incentive to tell their GI doctors that they are only to note on the claim form “yes or no” in response to colon cancer and nothing else. Normally, we would want to encourage doctors to share all information with patients, and the patients would want that as well. But securing payment for preventive services requires the doctor code up the entire procedure as routine preventive screening.

The question is how do consumers inform the government of the need for a special coding or otherwise provide guidance on preventive screening based on intent at time of service, not on subsequent findings? I could write my local congressman, but he is a newly elected conservative Republican who opposes health care and everything else proposed by Obama. If I wrote him on the need for clarification of preventive health visits, he would interpret that as a letter advising him to vote against health care reform at every opportunity. I doubt my two conservative Republican senators would be any different. They have stand pat reply letters on health care reform that they send to all constituents who write in regarding health care matters.

To my knowledge, there is no way to make effective suggestions to the Obama administration. Perhaps the only solution is to publicize the problem in articles and raise these issues in discussion forums

There is a clear and absolute need for government to get involved in the health care sector. You seem to forget how upset people were with the non-government, pure private sector-based health care system that left 49 million Americans uninsured. When those facts are mentioned to people abroad, they think of America as having a Third World type health care system. Few Japanese, Canadians, or Europeans would trade their existing health care coverage for what they perceive as the gross inequities in the US Health Care System.

The Affordable Care Act, I agree, completely fails to address the fundamental cost driver of health care. For example, it perpetuates and even exacerbates the tendency of consumers to purchase health services without any regard to price. Efficiency in private markets requires cost-conscious consumers; we don’t have that in health care.

I am glad the ACA was passed. It is a step in the right direction. As noted, there are problems with the ACA including the “preventive health visits” to the doctor, which are supposed to be covered 100% by insurance but may not be if any diagnostic code is entered on the claim form.

Congress is so polarized on health care that the only way to get changes is with a groundswell of popular support. I don’t think a letter writing campaign is the correct way to reform payment for the “preventive health visits.” If enough consumers advise their doctors that this particular visit is to be treated solely as a preventive health visit, and they will not pay for any service in the event the doctor’s office miscodes the visit with anything else, then the medical establishment will take notice and use its lobbying arm to make Congress aware of the problem.

COMMENT: Should there not be an agreement up front between both parties on what actions that will be taken if said item is found or said event should be seen or occur? Should their be a box on the pre-surgical form giving the patient the right to denying the doctor to take proper action (deemed by whom?) if they see a need to? Checking this box would save the patient the cost of the procedure, and give them time for a consult. If there is not a box to check, why isn’t there one?

There are two separate questions posed by the checkbox election for procedures. First, does a patient have a legal right to check such a box or instruct a physician/surgeon orally or in writing that he does not give consent for that procedure to be performed? The answer to that question is yes.

The second question is does it serve the economic interest of the patient to check that box? For the colonoscopy, in theory the patient would get his or her free preventive screening, but then be told the patient needs to schedule a second colonoscopy for removal of a suspicious polyp. In that case, the patient would eventually have to pay for a colonoscopy out of pocket (unless he had already met his yearly deductible), so there is no clear economic rationale for denying the physician the right to remove the polyp during the screening colonoscopy.

But we are using the much less common colonoscopy example. Instead, let’s return to preventive care with a primary care doctor. Should a patient have the right to check a box and say “I want this visit to cover routine preventive care and nothing more”? Certainly. There is way too much discretion afforded physicians to code up whatever they want on claim forms such that two physicians seeing the exact same patient might code up different procedures and diagnostics for the exact same preventive health screening visit.

When I expect to receive a “zero cost to me” preventive screening, I do not imply that I am willing to accept a “bait and switch” change of procedure and payment due to the doctor from me. The “zero cost to me” induces consumers to go to the office visit; it is actually paid for out of the profits earned by the health insurance firms to whom consumers pay monthly premiums. Consumers need to hold doctors financially accountable for their claim billing practices. If you are quoted a “zero price” for a visit, the doctor’s office better honor that price, or it amounts to fraud.

It is all too easy to find any little old thing to justify billing a patient for a sick visit instead of a wellness visit. However, it is up to the patient to prevent that kind of profiteering at his or her expense.

It would be wonderful if HHS would give carriers the proper code or specify that other diagnostic codes cannot negate the preventive screening code used for a wellness visit. That is not happening now. DHS has been bombarded with so many questions and suggestions for health care reform that the department has a fortress like mentality. So realistically, consumers cannot expect DHS to address the coding issue for preventive health screenings any time soon. That leaves the full burden to fall on each consumer to ensure the doctor’s billing practices match the patient’s expectations for a free preventive health office visit.

I investigated the web site http://www.healthcare.gov/news/factsheets/2010/07/preventive-services-list.html and discovered some inconsistencies. For example, the site purports to list the services covered under the “preventive health” coverage benefit, yet it omits the annual physical exam. Also, the site states that colorectal cancer screening are provided for people age 50 or older. However, I have been advised in writing that United Healthcare will cover preventive screening colonoscopies for people under age 50. In essence, that government web page is a good start to learn about preventive health care benefits, but a better source would be each consumer’s own health insurance carrier. For those with temporary insurance or who are without any insurance coverage, unfortunately, the preventive health benefit of the ACA will not have any practical consequence.

Where will the money come from for the preventive health screening visit to a primary care doctor as well as the screening colonoscopy? We have to look at different scenarios. If the patient indeed has preventive health screenings with no other medical diagnoses, then the patient will be charged $0 for these services, and they will be paid for by the insurance carrier. The insurance carrier will pay these costs out of its operating income or profits. There is simply no other source for payment. The government has not offered to pay the insurance companies for these services.

If the patient is hit with various medical diagnostic codes during these preventive health screenings, then he or she will pay his customary charge for the primary care doctor’s office visit and the contract-negotiated price for the diagnostic colonoscopy. In that scenario, the consumer will be paying most of these costs, although the visit to the primary doc may be limited up to any applicable copay amount.

It is not a big shock or surprise to say preventive health care is going to be borne by health insurance carriers. The extent to which these carriers can pass along costs to consumers through higher rates depends on the degree of competition in their markets. Ehealthinsurance.com advises me that for the vast majority of states, the insurance carriers have NOT been able to shift these costs onto consumers through higher rates. That may change in 2013 or 2014. However, the trend is clearly moving in the direction of more power for consumers, more options and carriers available to supply health insurance in their states, which means greater competition and lower prices.

For additional sections of this article, please see http://www.michaelguth.com

Vitamin D: Nature’s Wonder Drug Under Attack

Just around the holidays, the New York Times ran an article regarding vitamin D and the fact that a recent finding of a panel of “experts” hand-picked by the U.S. and Canadian governments, determined that North Americans on the whole were taking too much calcium and vitamin D and were putting themselves at risk for future health problems.

The difficulty I have is that this was a panel assembled by the Obama Administration that looked at no scientific data and was formed for the express purpose of determining that the scientific evidence compiled by the National Institute of Health, under the watchful eyes of the two previous administrations was, in fact, incorrect.

Our publication, HerbalMD is filled with articles from prominent scientific studies showing empirical evidence that vitamin D is essential in bone health, cancer prevention, cardiovascular health and the list goes on.

Of the thousands of studies compiled in PubMed, the U.S. Government’s data base for medical studies, we couldn’t find one shred of evidence that backs up the Committee’s findings. And why is that, we ask?

Sunshine is the #1 source of vitamin D. During the course of the day you’ll find your pets moving around the house to take naps where the sun shines through a window. They instinctively know that they need this sunshine in order to maintain good health. The medical profession tells us to stay out of the sun due to the potential threat of skin cancers. If, God forbid, you must go outside, they tell us, be sure to cover yourself in plenty of sun block.

Ten years ago you could wear a 4-8 SPF but now, it had better be no less than 50! A new study just came out regarding high SPF and the relationship to bone disease which we will cover at another time.

In the month of April, 2011 alone, there have been dozens of studies that have concluded that vitamin D reduces the risk of Age-related Macular Degeneration in older women, reduces the risk of Parkinson Disease, increase bone health and improves the body’s ability to combat Type 2 Diabetes. That’s just this month.

Conclusive evidence shows that vitamin D3 combats cancer and is now used at every major cancer treatment in levels that would make the “Committee of Experts” heads spin. The NIH has countless articles on vitamin D as it relates to bone health, asthma, cancer, multiple sclerosis and diabetes. See for yourself at NIH.org. In fact the FDA warns that not getting enough vitamin D will cause those suffering from asthma to develop osteoporosis.

Let’s look at supplementation fact. The Mayo Clinic states the following:

“Vitamin D is included in most multivitamins, usually in strengths from 50 IU to 1,000 IU as softgels, capsules, tablets, and liquids. The Adequate Intake (AI) levels have been established by the U.S. Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. Recommendations are: 5 micrograms (200 IU or International Units) daily for all individuals (males, female, pregnant/lactating women) under the age of 50 years-old. For all individuals from 50-70 years-old, 10 micrograms daily (400 IU) is recommended. For those who are over 70 years-old, 15 micrograms daily (600 IU) is suggested. Some authors have questioned whether the current recommended adequate levels are sufficient to meet physiological needs, particularly for individuals deprived of regular sun exposure. The upper limit (UL) for vitamin D has been recommended as 2,000 IU daily due to toxicities that can occur when taken in higher doses.”

If you read the labels of vitamin D supplements, you’ll find that almost no manufacturer recommends more than 1,000 IU daily and in only 17% of those studied, taking more than 2,000 IU for a period of more than 6 months caused kidney stones. It also reduced the risk of cancer by 23%! But who wants kidney stones?

If the scientific community is gung-ho on vitamin D, what could be the motivation of the governments of the United States and Canada to tell us to back off? Many will blame the pharmaceutical companies and lobbyists who fuel presidential and congressional campaigns and I for one will never disagree with that.

Having spoken to politicians and listened to recent presidential speeches, I will chalk it up to a lack of knowledge. Committees are formed to reach foregone conclusions while science, on the other hand, has the responsibility to uncover facts. I’ll take facts over politics any day.