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"Dad taught me everything I know. Unfortunately, he didn't teach me everything he knows."
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  Volume No. 15 Issue No. 6 June 2018  

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Front Page   |   Feature Stories   |   Search This Issue   |   Log In
  Antibiotics won’t cure the common cold
  By Breeanna Jent

   The tell-tale signs of a common cold come on slowly and then seemingly all at once. First, a stuffy, runny nose; then, a sore, swollen throat; and then sneezing and coughing.
   Dr. Steven Doer stated in an article called “Common Cold,” posted on, that the common cold is “an upper respiratory tract infection caused by many different viruses.”
   “The common cold can really make people miserable,” said Dr. Christine Nevin-Woods, medical director of the El Paso County Public Health Department.
   Nevin-Woods said it is not always necessary to seek medical help for the cold, but certain people are susceptible to harsher symptoms. In some cases, the cold turns into more severe illnesses.
   “Most adults realize the common cold will run its course, and they don’t need to see a medical provider,” Nevin-Woods said. “But, the viruses causing the common cold can cause significant problems for some people, such as those with asthma, emphysema, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, babies and the elderly. Half of asthmatic exacerbations are caused by viruses and the common cold.”
   Treatments for a cold vary for these populations.
   Babies who have a cold can experience difficulty with breathing, Nevin-Woods said. “So it’s important that parents have a rubber-suction tool so the baby can breathe,” she said. “Not being able to breathe properly can be the most miserable part.”
   Danielle Oller, a spokeswoman for the El Paso County Department of Public Health, said it is difficult to track the common cold since medical providers are not required to report cases to the county.
   “Since it’s not a reportable disease, there’s not really a tracking mechanism at the local level, nor, I believe, at the state level,” Oller said.
   Cold and flu season generally hits in the fall and winter months, Nevin-Woods said; and, since the cold is so common — hence its name — its reach is difficult to quantify, she added.
   And antibiotics won’t treat it.
   “There is no antivirus or antibiotic to cure the common cold,” Nevin-Woods said. “It’s caused by a virus, not a bacterial infection.”
   According to a WebMD article titled “Bacterial and Viral Infections,” bacteria are single-celled organisms that can reproduce on their own, while viruses need a living host to survive and reproduce by attaching themselves to cells.
   “There’s probably not a way to shorten the duration of a cold, but if you can, stay home and rest. Throat lozenges and Tylenol, and sometimes a hot shower, can help with the symptoms,” Nevin-Woods said.
   Using preventive measures to avoid a cold is best.
   “Good hand-washing is No. 1 Or, use hand sanitizer,” Nevin-Woods said. “Don’t share utensils like cups or cutlery. ... If you’re sick and coughing or sneezing, do it into a tissue or into your sleeve, so you’re not spitting the virus into the air. That’s also just polite.”
   It is important to differentiate between a common cold and a more severe illness.
   “Flu season is typically in the fall and winter, and sometimes what looks like a common cold can be something more serious, like the flu,” Nevin-Woods said. “Pertussis, for example, can mimic a cold at first. If a child is having trouble breathing; or is wheezing, has a fever and is not getting better; or is not eating or drinking; that would be the time to see a doctor.”
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   Nutrition, massage and oils for migraines
  By Lindsey Harrison

   Jan Patenaude, a registered dietician/nutritionist and certified LEAP (lifestyle, eating and performance) therapist who lives in Hawaii, has been a dietician since 1982. She has been using the LEAP protocol for 15 years. Patenaude said people can be susceptible to all sorts of triggers for migraines.
   Sometimes a person may be exposed to a variety of things that could trigger a migraine, but Patenaude said until those triggers reach a certain threshold, nothing happens. When the threshold is met, the migraine starts. Put them together, and food sensitivities, stress, changes in weather, poor eating habits, dehydration, allergies, etc., can lead to a migraine.
   Patenaude said this threshold-type migraine is often why people are not able to properly identify their triggers. However, a patented test created by Oxford Biomedical Technologies, called a Mediator Release Test, can help narrow down specific food triggers, so someone can avoid or eliminate them from their diet, Patenaude said. “You are playing diet detective and food sleuth,” she said.
   Combining the results of the MRT with the LEAP protocol, which tests 120 foods and 30 chemicals to see what might be a trigger, along with a person’s clinical history, Patenaude said she uses that information to create an elimination diet. The MRT, LEAP protocol and clinical history are important to consider together because a LEAP therapist can customize an elimination diet for each person, Patenaude said.
   “I expect improvement in 98 percent of my clients that follow the protocol, maybe not 100 percent improvement, but improvement nonetheless,” she said.
   Patenaude said triggers are specific to each person and can change over time, but some common migraine-related triggers are soy, corn, wheat, dairy, cocoa, aged cheese, red wines and caffeine.
   Massage therapy
   Renee Deichman, a licensed massage therapist practicing in Colorado Springs for 10 years, said massage is a great alternative treatment for migraines, when possible.
   “The thing about massage therapy is that if you already have a migraine, you probably will not get rid of it,” Deichman said. “I generally will not even touch them (clients) if they are in the middle of one. I would usually want the migraine to calm down before I touch them because you release a lot of toxins into the body with massage, and that can make a migraine last longer.”
   She said she often recommends diffusing an essential oil into the air as an alternative to a massage. If the oil is effective but the odor is irritating, the oil can be rubbed on the bottom of the feet, allowing the healing properties to more quickly hit the nervous system.
   Clients who feel a migraine coming on or want to get rid of an average headache are good candidates for massage therapy, Deichman said. “I will generally start by pulling at the base of their skull,” she said. “I focus on the back of the head because that is usually where you start to feel the migraine, on either side of the planes of your skull. Whatever side you feel the migraine on, I start with the other side because once that side lets go, the other side can let go better.”
   “Digestion issues, lack of sleep, not exercising regularly, not hydrating properly — those things can all cause migraines,” Deichman said. 
   A personal account of oils
   Jessica Smith, a stay-at-home mom in North Carolina, said she has used the dōTERRA brand of essential oils for migraines for the past two years. “Peppermint is great for headaches ... I tried that first,” she said.
   She also touts Deep Blue, which is a blend of peppermint, blue tansy flower, blue chamomile flower oil, helichrysum, wintergreen and camphor bark oil. The oil is effective for migraines when applied to the temples, across the forehead, behind the ears or on the back of the neck, Smith said.
   She also mentioned two other oils: Aroma Touch, a blend of cypress, peppermint, marjoram, basil, grapefruit and lavender and Motivate, a blend of peppermint, clementine, coriander, basil, Melissa, rosemary and vanilla bean.
   Aside from the physical benefits of the oils, Smith said the other benefit is that the cost compared to a migraine medication is significantly less. “Essential oils come out to pennies per drop of oil,” she said. “A 15 milliliter bottle of peppermint, for example, at the wholesale cost if you are a DōTerra member is $20.50, and there are roughly 250 drops per bottle. Plus, the wonderful thing about oils is there is no expiration date. All you need is one drop and it goes a long way.”
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  Chicken Pot Pie Soup

   Now, this could be a cure for the common cold. Creamy, hearty chicken soup wrapped up in a warm flaky crust. However, the real deal is often loaded with calories. Here is a lighter recipe for the pot pie soup, and the same flavors and comfort level remain. It’s also great for a chilly March day.
   Courtesy of
   Servings: 16
   Here’s what you need:
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 yellow onions, diced
  • 3 stalks celery, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 Tablespoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cups roasted chicken, chopped
  • 2 (14 oz) cans coconut milk
  • 1 cup pearl onions, halved
  • 1 zucchini, diced
  • 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Melt the coconut oil in a soup pot over medium-low heat. Add the onions, celery and garlic. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in the coconut flour and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the wine and cook until evaporated. Stir in the broth, butternut squash, sweet potato, thyme, poultry seasoning and bay leaf. Bring the soup to a boil over medium-high heat and then reduce to medium. Simmer the soup until the butternut squash and sweet potatoes are tender, 10-15 minutes. Discard the thyme and bay leaf.
  3. Add the chicken, coconut milk, pearl onions, diced zucchini, parsley and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper and simmer for another 5 minutes. Serve hot and enjoy!

   Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 227 calories, 15g fat, 11g carbohydrate, 4g sugar, 329mg sodium, 3g fiber, and 12g protein.
   David Corder CPT
   Perfect Fit Wellness Center
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  The mantra suit of armor
  First published in the Nashville Review Dec. 1, 2014
  By Jeff Bowles

   The epiphany is this: Thin people hate fat people.
   I can’t tell you the exact moment this epiphany occurred to me, though I can assure you, once it occurred, it never stopped occurring; and, in truth, occurs to me several times a year.
   Do thin people - all thin people - really hate fat people? Is laughing at a fat joke a little act of hate? Is assuming a fat person is lazy, undisciplined — without knowing a single thing about them — a minute, simple-minded act of hate?
   On an unseasonably warm February evening in 2010, my wife and I were going out to dinner after having finished our intakes for Optifast, a medically supervised weight loss program. We’d be drinking special nutrient-rich shakes instead of eating. The real work would begin the following Monday, but tonight we were happy and hungry.
   Happy because things were finally looking up for us. Happy because the struggles of our lives - visible, clear as day - unlike the struggles of most others, impossible to conceal - might soon be over.
   We went to our favorite Mexican restaurant. We sat. We ordered our meals. We talked about how awesome and fun the future would be.
   The smell of seared steak, chicken and warm tortillas — and wall decorations that had very little to do with Mexico and everything to do with being flashy and colorful — encouraged diners to have a good time.
   The guy who ruined our night was not having a good time. He had been drinking: perhaps beer; perhaps margaritas. I like to imagine he had just lost his job, or his wife or his house. I would like to think he wasn’t really a bad guy, but had his mind made up to hurt someone as much as the world had hurt him.
   I was halfway through my carne asada burrito; my wife enjoying her beef enchiladas. The guy was middle-aged, pushing 60, perhaps younger than that, with the years and the pains and the liquor aging him perceptibly.
   He walked up to our table. Eyes bleary. Eyes furious. “You enjoying that food?” he said. My wife smiled at him. “Yes, thank you.” He replied, simply enough, “F__ing cow.”
   It took a couple seconds for his words to register; only a couple — the span of a heartbeat or two. And then anger like bile sloshed around my gut, churning with the carne asada, surging up my throat and into my mouth; where I tasted it like so much chili sauce and stomach acid.
   I swallowed a bite of burrito, raised my hand, flipped the bird, and said, “Right here, buddy.”
   The drunk guy lost it — started snapping and snarling and saying all sorts of really trashy stuff. I snapped back. I wasn’t alone. At the table behind us, a pair of large women - not huge, but large - joined in the yelling and trashiness. And a family in the booth to our right, the father, who was perhaps 20, 30 pounds overweight, yelled at the man to sit down.
   The drunk moved to hover over my wife. I surged to my feet. I spilled my drink.
   By the time the restaurant manager intervened, the whole place was watching us. The manager took the drunk under the arm and pushed him out the door.
   One last vitriolic howl.
   And then he was gone. Just like that.
   The manager comped our meal — not that we felt like eating anymore. We made a beeline for our car, just in case the guy had stuck around and was waiting to ambush us.
   I don’t know. Was he the exception and not the rule? I’ve been dealing with jerks like him since I was 6 years old. What’s the exception? What’s the rule?
   My wife and I are still fat. Not because we like it, but because struggle means struggle. Here is what I realized: Struggle does not end, just as struggle does not begin. If I’m unfortunate, it’s because I must wear the bad parts of myself like a suit, like a second skin, on display — see the monkey, laugh and point.
   Thin people hate fat people. Thin people hate fat people. It’s more mantra than epiphany. Thin people hate fat people.
   It’s a suit of armor, and I can wear it any time I want, any time the years stretch ahead and behind, and nights like that night don’t seem rare, but rather, seem to be the story of my life.
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