Health, Myths, Fraud and the Crisis

Archive for the ‘Myths’ Category

Is The Pharma Industry Educating Your Physician?

At least that appears to be the conclusion after reading this study in PLoS medicine

” The complex relationship between health professionals and the pharmaceutical industry has long been a subject of discussion among physicians and policymakers. There is a growing body of evidence that suggests that physicians’ interactions with pharmaceutical sales representatives may influence clinical decision making in a way that is not always in the best interests of individual patients, for example, encouraging the use of expensive treatments that have no therapeutic advantage over less costly alternatives. The pharmaceutical industry often uses physician education as a marketing tool, as in the case of Continuing Medical Education courses that are designed to drive prescribing practices.

One reason that physicians may be particularly susceptible to pharmaceutical industry marketing messages is that doctors’ attitudes towards the pharmaceutical industry may form early in their careers. The socialization effect of professional schooling is strong, and plays a lasting role in shaping views and behaviors. ”

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Nobel Prize-Winning Physicist Resigns Over Global Warming

Dr. Ivar Giaever, a former professor with Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the 1973 winner of the Nobel Prize in physics, abruptly announced his resignation Tuesday, Sept. 13, from the premier physics society in disgust over its officially stated policy that “global warming is occurring.” ….

The official position of the American Physical Society(APS) supports the theory that man’s actions have inexorably led to the warming of the planet, through increased emissions of carbon dioxide.

Giaever does not agree — and put it bluntly and succinctly in the subject line of his email, reprinted at Climate Depot, a website devoted to debunking the theory of man-made climate change.

“Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” – Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford Commencement Address

I’m Glad I Dropped Out of College

by Steve Jobs (1955-2011)


This is the text of the Commencement address by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, delivered on June 12, 2005.

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.

None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, its likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

My second story is about love and loss. (more…)

The biggest 10 lies your dentist might have told you

This might have been the most important information for my dental health I ever came across: Two  dentists have written a book with the provocative title “Zahnarztlügen” ( Dentist lies, available only in German).  In their book they list the following statements as not true :

  • Caries is not curable
  • Brushing teeth prevents caries
  • One must see a dentist
  • Professional tooth cleaning protects from caries and periodontitis
  • Flossing protects from caries
  • Fillings protect from caries
  • Bleaching and whitening toothpaste are harmless
  • Teeth decay anyway
  • Caries and periodontitis are unavoidable
  • Third molars can move front teeth

They cite a number of studies as proof for their claims. The cited studies are listed below. They say 95% of Germans are suffering from caries although they brush their teeth daily and visit their dentist regularly. Germans are spending more money on dentists than anybody else on the planet. They also say that dentist visits carry a high risks. That I can confirm, during a normal check up I catched the worst gingival infection of my entire life and then the dentist sent me from one expert to the next. It had cost me a fortune.

Unfortunately this information comes a bit late for most of my teeth, the good news is that existing caries can even be reversed, the enamel can be remineralized.

(more…)

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