February 2005


  • Maintenance Chiropractic Care Shown to be Beneficial in Study
  • Sweet Drinks Linked to Overweight Children
  • Alternative Medicine Gaining Acceptance, Says Study
  • Spinal Hygiene Shown to Improve Quality of Life
  • Story Exposes Vaccine-Mercury Link Known Long Ago
  • Child Movie Star Big Supporter of Chiropractic

Maintenance Chiropractic Care Shown to be Beneficial in Study

From the peer-reviewed scientific periodical, the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, October 2004 edition, comes a study that shows that receiving maintenance chiropractic care after initial care helps patients continue reduction in their disability.

The study was performed with 30 volunteers who were suffering from long term non-specific back problems. These volunteers were divided into two groups. The first group received intensive chiropractic care consisting of 12 visits for one month, followed by a reduced schedule of one visit every three weeks for 9 months after the initial intensive care. The second group received nothing for the first 30 days, to establish a baseline, then received one month of initial intensive care.  The second group did not receive any reduced or maintenance care after the initial care. The two groups were then evaluated and compared for pain and disability.

The results showed that both groups had similar reduction of pain and disability after the initial 30 days of chiropractic care.  Additionally, both groups maintained their reduction of pain even though only one group had received maintenance care. However, the big difference was that only those individuals who were in the group that received the 9 months of maintenance care were able to maintain their reduction in disability.  The group that did not receive maintenance care was able to keep their reduction in pain, but they did return to the same levels of general disability that they were experiencing prior to the initial chiropractic care.

Disability was measured using a scientifically designed questionnaire that looked at 10 items addressing different aspects of functional capacities.  This questionnaire, known as the "Oswestry Disability Index" is the accepted method used to measure a person's function as related to their daily activities.  In this study, only the group that continued to receive chiropractic care every three weeks was able to maintain the functional improvement they received during the initial care.

The authors of the study concluded, "Intensive spinal manipulation is effective for the treatment of chronic low back pain. This experiment suggests that maintenance spinal manipulations after intensive manipulative care may be beneficial to patients to maintain subjective postintensive treatment disability levels."


Sweet Drinks Linked to Overweight Children

A scientific study published in the February 2005 issue of the journal Pediatrics published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, shows that sweet drinks, whether Kool-Aid with sugar, soda or all-natural apple juice cause an increase in the weight of preschoolers.  The study suggested that even one or two drinks per day can add on the pounds.

The study showed that children who were normal or underweight were only at a slight risk of becoming overweight from consuming sweet drinks.  However, children who were at risk for being overweight, or who were already overweight, and who drank 1-2 sweet drinks per day were on average more than twice as likely to become overweight or gain weight.

Lead researcher Jean Welsh of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted that preschoolers were better off snacking on fruit or drinking water or milk.  She commented, "Sweet drinks are a source of added sugar in the diet." She also noted that, "Juice is definitely a part of this."  She noted that fruit juice does have vitamins but that it is inferior to actually eating fruit which also contains fiber.

The February 7, 2005 issue of WebMD, reporting on the same study stated, "Researchers say excess weight in children is associated with numerous medical problems including high blood pressure, diabetes, lung problems, and psychological and social problems. Overweight children are more likely to be overweight adults."

The published study summed up their results by saying, "The problem of increasing overweight among children has prompted a search for factors that contribute to this trend. Our study provides evidence that the consumption of sweet drinks as infrequently as 1 to 2 times daily increases the odds of becoming overweight among those who are at risk for overweight at baseline and of remaining overweight among those who are already overweight by 60% or more."


Alternative Medicine Gaining Acceptance, Says Study

A story by John Dorschner of Knight Ridder News Service and published in the January 30, 2005 issue of the Miami Herald reported on the huge increase of insurance companies covering, what they termed, "Alternative Medicine".  The story reports that this activity is now a $30 billion industry.

Some insurance programs, such as Vista Healthplan, based in Hollywood, Fla., has even announced a discount program for its members of up to 30 percent to encourage usage of some 30 alternative programs.  Steve Russell, a Vista vice president commented on a new program where seniors enrolled in Vista can get a $25 voucher to try alternative care.  He noted, "Most of them don't know about these things. Basically, we're encouraging them to step over the line."  He continued, "To increase their mobility, their flexibility, to get out and try new things."

Santiago Leon, a Miami health insurance broker who has studied the field extensively stated, "Complementary medicine is going mainstream quickly.  Part of the impulse is therapeutic. Part of it is economic." 

John Dorschner, author of the article noted that chiropractic care may not even be considered alternative anymore. He stated "Chiropractic, once considered alternative, is now considered mainstream, or nearly so. A chiropractor's adjustment of a back, or a few minutes of massage therapy, when effective, costs a fraction of what back surgery does. Eighty-seven percent of firms offering health insurance now have benefits for chiropractic, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation."


Spinal Hygiene Shown to Improve Quality of Life

The Chiropractic profession has long stressed the importance of a healthy spine for overall health and wellness.  Now a study published in the August 16, 2004 issue of the scientific periodical, The Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research, (JVSR) has shown that spinal hygiene actually does improve the measurement of quality of life.

According to the published study, "Spinal hygiene is defined as patient-active principles and/or practices conducive to producing a healthy spinal column and nervous system and preventing vertebral subluxations. This includes: improving posture, promoting proper exercise, making healthy nutritional choices, guidance in stress reduction, ergonomics, emphasis upon the patientís self-responsibility and appropriate professional spinal evaluation and care."

In the study a group of volunteer chiropractic students took a spinal hygiene class.  These students were then compared to a group who did not take such a class. The results were then measured using two predetermined scientific formats for measuring quality of life known as the "Rand SF-36 Health Survey and the Global Well-Being Scale".

The results showed that the students who participated in the spinal hygiene class showed significant improvement in a wide area of quality of life parameters.  This was noted both in comparison against their scores before they took the spinal hygiene class as well as in comparison with the group that did not take the class.

The researchers summed up their study by concluding, "The practice of spinal hygiene procedures shows great promise in the vital area of improvement of quality of life. In a society where obesity and sedentary living are pandemic and spinal health is deteriorating, it is hoped that as health care practitioners these students will share and model positive spinal and neurological health behaviors to their patients and communities."


Story Exposes Vaccine-Mercury Link Known Long Ago

From the February 8, 2005 edition of the LA Times comes an expose story showing that Merck & Company, the vaccine producer knew in 1991 that their vaccines had a dangerously high rate of mercury.  According to the report a  March 1991 memo, discovered by The LA Times showed that the 6-month-old children who received their shots on schedule would get a mercury dose up to 87 times higher than guidelines for the maximum daily consumption of mercury from fish.

The memo written by  Dr. Maurice R. Hilleman, an internationally renowned vaccinologist, stated, "When viewed in this way, the mercury load appears rather large."  According to the story, it was in 1999 that Federal health officials disclosed for the first time that many infants were being exposed to mercury above health guidelines through routine vaccinations.  The memo showed that the knowledge of this problem was known years earlier.

The text of the memo also stated, The key issue is whether thimerosal, in the amount given with the vaccine, does or does not constitute a safety hazard. However, perception of hazard may be equally important." This information adds to the seriousness of more than 4,200 claims that have been filed in a special federal tribunal under the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, by parents claiming that their children suffered autism or other neurodevelopmental disorders from mercury in vaccines.

Presently many drug makers claim that thimerosal has been voluntarily reduced from their vaccines. However, only two states have laws on this issue. In September of 2004, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed legislation prohibiting vaccines with more than trace amounts of thimerosal from being given to babies and pregnant women. Iowa is the only other state that has a similar law.


Child Movie Star Big Supporter of Chiropractic

Jonathan Lipnicki is the child star of movies such as Jerry McGuire and the two Stuart Little movies. He has been under chiropractic care most of his life.  In fact, on one of his early interviews on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, he stated that he wanted to be a chiropractor when he grows up.  Apparently his future employment will not be as a chiropractor since his acting career has continued to skyrocket.  However, he still wants chiropractic to be a part of his life as he stated at a recent chiropractic convention appearance that he may not become a chiropractor, but he'd like to marry one.

Lipnicki, now 15, has also shown his love for chiropractic by taking on the role as a spokesperson for Pediatric Chiropractic.  In an interview published in the January 2005 issue of Chiropractic Economics, he noted that he received his first adjustment when he was just  a few months old and he's been receving adjustments all of his life.  He stated, "It's a good way to live. You perform at your best, whether it's academically or physically."

He also showed his support for a chiropractic lifestyle in an interview for the February 26, 2005 issue of Dynamic Chiropractic where he commented, "If you want to perform at your ultimate best, if you want to be the best you can be in sports and in school, mentally, physically - chiropractic is the way, because everything has to do with your nervous system, and if you can clear up any subluxation in there, you'll be pretty much OK."

Lipnicki will be doing public service announcements and speaking to the press in a effort to raise the consciousness of children and their parents concerning chiropractic and a healthy lifestyle. He made his reasoning clear by saying in the Chiropractic Economics article, "I want to be part of the solution by telling kids. I love this wellness lifestyle."


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