In this issue:

Dear Readers,

Welcome to the July 2007 True North Tune-Up.  We continue to emphasize “up stream” strategies for health in the areas of nutrition, mind-body, and lifestyle. The studies are from peer-reviewed scientific journals. Archived prior issues of the Tune-Up may be found at

To your health,

B. Joseph Semmes, MD
Director of Research, True North
Diplomate, American Boards of Internal Medicine, Critical Care Medicine (ABIM) and Emergency Medicine

Exercise has powerful evidence-based health benefits.

Exercise has powerful evidence-based health benefits. Below is the link to the University of Oxford, UK’s summary of the effects of exercise in reducing dementia, heart disease, hypertension, osteoporosis, diabetes etc. Anyone with a body and a mind should get exercising.

Click here for more information

Vitamin D and Calcium supplementation reduce cancer risk.

This high quality randomized trial looked at 1179 white women (rural Nebraska’s not diverse!) over 55 years old for 4 years. Those that received Vitamin D3 1100 IU/day and 1500 mg supplemental calcium citrate cut their cancer risk by 60% when compared to women receiving placebos. The full text is available for free at:

Note also the recent study that indiscriminate supplementation with excessive multivitamins, selenium, betacarotene or zinc can raise men’s risk of prostate cancer.

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Acupuncture provides short term benefits for knee osteoarthritis.

Clinically relevant short-term benefits in pain and function were seen in this rigorous analysis of 9 studies, particularly when treated patients were compared to those waiting to be treated. The authors noted that “sham” acupuncture, needling but not at the acupuncture points, also appeared to benefit patients.

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“Probiotic” supplements lessen antibiotic associated diarrhea and dangerous clostridium difficile infection.

Clostridium difficile is a bacteria which overgrows and causes colitis in millions of patients annually in the U.S. when they have been treated with antibiotics. It can be fatal in the frail. Six studies showed that “Probiotics” (supplementation with healthy bacteria by capsules or liquid) significantly reduced  (by 40%) antibiotic associated clostridium difficile colitis if Saccharomyces boulardii was the type of healthy bacteria. Twenty five studies showed that probiotic mixtures led to a 60% reduction in antibiotic associated diarrhea.

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Mobile phones and cancer. Not.

420,000 Danish citizens with mobile phones were followed over 13 years. There were no increases in brain, head and neck, leukemia or other cancers.

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Information provided in the True North Tune-Up is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The information and links in this e-publication are intended to provide general education on the topics listed, but you should not use the information or links to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare practitioner. True North advises you to always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health practitioner prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.


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