New Research means Bright Future for Type 1 Diabetics

Type 1 diabetics that are currently controlling their disorder through pills or injections may never need to poke themselves every again! Since type 1 diabetics cannot produce insulin, a naturally-occurring hormone of the human body, human guts cells that may be able to produce insulin might help to solve their condition. 

Researchers from Columbia University studied gastrointestinal cells located in the human torso. What they have found is that by turning off a single gene, named FOX01, in these arrangements causes those cells to start producing insulin. From this information, there is possible hope for a drug creation that would reinstruct cells in diabetics to start producing this much needed hormone. 
Researchers, using stem cells, created a tissue model of a human intestine and trained those cells to stop the FOXO1 gene which, within a week, started producing the crucial hormone. What really made this research plausible, was the cells only started producing insulin when they were provided with sugar, just like the natural process of the human body. 

Since the human immune system can reject cells that are foreign to them, current procedures using stem or embryonic cells, will become obsolete. With this research, patients will be able to train their own cells to produce insulin allowing the prevention of procedural rejections and increasing the amount of successful patients. 

More research is still needed before this becomes available to the public. However if it does the efforts of medical researchers over the past twenty years will finally end in victory. 

Production of insulin in the gastrointestinal cells investigation was published in the journalNature Communications.

Epilepsy Treatment WITHOUT Drugs?



“Biofeedback Therapy”

by Brooke Huber


Epilepsy is an illness that is usually controlled with medication from your doctor. However, it is believed by many that being put on prescription medication can cause one to feel “controlled” by the substance. Although the medication has helped control many people’s seizures, it has also been known to cause disturbing side effects to the body.

Some of these side effects include:

·         Blurred vision

·         Fatigue

·         Dizziness

·         Upset Stomach

Among these side effects, there are also unpredictable side effects that can happen when taking such medication. It can cause a serious drop in your white blood cell count (used to fight bodily infections) or a serious drop in your platelets (needed to control bleeding). You may also develop a serious skin rash, liver and pancreas problems, or aplastic anemia (bone marrow damage).

It is important for people who suffer from epilepsy to know that there are other options for treatment. Biofeedback Therapy is an alternative strategy for controlling your Epilepsy. It has been successfully practiced since the 1940’s and is known as a “mind and body technique”. Biofeedback Therapy was formulated to help people control the heavier and more stressful symptoms of Epilepsy in a more natural way. This type of treatment allows you to train and control body functions that would normally happen automatically.

Controllable bodily functions include:

  • Blood pressure
  • Muscle tension
  • Heartbeat
  • Migraines
  • Body temperature
  • And more


The procedure works by allowing you to first observe these movements on monitors and eventually change them yourself. After enough sessions of Biofeedback Therapy, you are able to minimize your number of seizures and the severity all by self-controlling them.

Click here to book an appointment to learn more about Biofeedback Therapy


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Is Sushi Really Healthy?

International Sushi Day is upon us and every year sushi is becoming more and more popular. It is looked at as the healthier choice of take out, date night, or girl’s night out. However, as healthy as it might sound, some maki sushi rolls can be loaded with more calories and fat than a cheeseburger! 

Use these tips to keep your rolls tasty but still nutritious:  

1. Ask for Brown Rice: Although this option only saves you a handful of calories, it is the whole grains that make it healthy. Whole grains have been proven to be heart healthy and protective!
2. Skip on Tempura or any fried rolls: Fried anything is filled with extra calories and fat. You can still eat your favorite rolls by asking the restaurant not to deep-fry it. 
3. Choose Veggies: Vegetables rolls, such as avocado, cucumber, shiitake mushrooms, and many others only offer heart healthy goodness while keeping the calories low. 
4. Eel is an ill choice: Eel is very high in calories and fat, and although it is delicious, limit yourself to this roll once in a while.
5. Be Selective on Spicy Mayo: Spicy Tuna rolls are delicious and tuna is a great choice, but when drenched in mayo it becomes a waste of calories. 

Try this Healthy Spin on your Favorite Sushi Roll at Home:

Quinoa Sushi

Ingredients – Serves 3:

- 3 sheets of nori

- 170g/half a cup of quinoa

- 3 tbsp thick greek yogurt

- 2 carrots, grated

- Half green pepper, sliced

- Half a salmon fillet, cooked

See the rest of the recipe here on Hungry Healthy Happy’s Blog

EZDOCTOR: Rheumatoid arthritis Q & A with Rheumatologist: Dr. Santiago

Dr. Santiago-Casas joined Drs. Kahn and Riskin’s practice (South Florida Rheumatologist) after serving as an attending physician and Associate Professor of Medicine in the Department of Rheumatology at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

You can book an appointment with Dr. Santiago-Casas in Hollywood, Florida here: 

What is rheumatoid arthritis? 

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a disease that produces pain, swelling and stiffness in the joints. The specific cause of this condition remains unknown, however genetic, hormonal, infectious and environmental factors have been linked to its development. It a type of autoimmune disease, meaning there is an error in the system that protects us from infections, where the system now attacks the joints. Approximately 1.3 million adults in the United States have RA. This type of arthritis is more common in women. It usually starts around the fourth and six decade of life, however it can occur at any age.

What are the symptoms of RA?

RA usually affects the small joints in the fingers, wrists and feet. It predominantly affects both sides of the body at the same time. Although it usually starts in the small joints of the fingers and toes, it can affect any of the joints. In addition, it may also begin in a single joint such as the knee or the shoulder. The onset of joint symptoms is usually gradually. These symptoms include joint pain, redness, warmth to the touch, and joint swelling. The joint stiffness is usually worse in the mornings and tends to last longer than 1 hour. Other symptoms of RA include tiredness, low grade fevers, loss of appetitive, nodules in the skin, and dryness of eyes. RA affects not only the joints, but other parts of the body as well, such as the eyes, heart, and lungs.

How is RA diagnosed?

The diagnosis of RA is based on a composite of factors including the characteristic signs and symptoms of the condition, the findings on physical examination, the results of the laboratory tests and the imaging results (including x-rays, ultrasound, and MRI). The initial symptoms of the condition may be very subtle making it especially difficult to diagnose in its early stages. 

What is the treatment for rheumatoid arthritis? 

The course of RA is variable. In the majority of the people the symptoms fluctuate for weeks or months. However, it is generally impossible to predict the course of RA or how it will affect a particular individual. Studies have shown however that the treatment of this type of arthritis must be initiated early in its course as to reduce the symptoms of arthritis, improve the quality of life, preserve physical function, and prevent joint damage.

The treatment in general of this condition involves three classes of medications: non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (or ‘NSAIDs’), steroids, and disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (or ‘DMARDs’). The specific type of medications depends on the patient’s individual characteristics and their side effect profile. However, once the diagnosis of RA is made the patient must start therapy with a DMARD promptly. DMARDs include methotrexate, sulfasalazine, leflunomide, hydroxychloroquine, and the biologic agents. Response to treatment usually requires several weeks, depending on the medication used. 

The biologic agents include etanercept, adalimumab, infliximab, certolizumab pegol, golimumab, abatacept, tocilizumab, rituximab, and the newer agent tofacitinib. In contrast to non-biologic DMARDs, the biologic agents begin to work rapidly within 2 weeks for some medications and four to six weeks for others. Biologics are usually used in combination with methotrexate; however some of them may also be used alone. 

Of note, studies have shown that patients with RA have a higher risk of heart disease and stroke, thus starting appropriate therapy for this type of arthritis is crucial not only for the joints, but for the rest of body.

Lifestyle changes are also important including eating a healthy diet, with plenty of fruits and vegetables. Also it is very important to stay active. However, during the episodes of flares of the arthritis, rest is advised and active exercises are avoided because symptoms might worsen. During these periods, mostly stretching and range of motion exercises are maintained. Evaluation by a physical therapist might be warranted to tailor a specific exercise program.

Several studies have shown that smoking is a risk factor for RA and that quitting smoking can actually improve the symptoms of this condition.  People with RA who smoke need to quit doing so promptly.

Surgery might necessary in patients with long term RA who do not exhibit ongoing inflammation, but rather present joint damage. In these cases where pain originates from joint damage and long term effects of arthritis, surgery might be indicated to replace the damaged joint.

The rheumatologists are the specialists best suited to diagnose this condition, especially in the early stages of the condition where it can mimic other diseases, and offer the best therapy available.

The structure of the normal joint is shown on the left. On the right side is the joint with rheumatoid arthritis. RA causes pain and swelling of the synovium (the tissue that lines the joint). This can make cartilage (the tissue that cushions between joints) and bone wear away (erosion).

Rheumatoid arthritis affects the wrist and the small joints of the hand, including the knuckles and the middle joints of the fingers.

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Good Carbs, Bad Carbs: Who’s to Blame?

Confusion about Carbohydrates – Change Your Diet, Change Your Body

By Brooke Huber

Yes, Carbohydrates are energy producing nutrients, but too much of a good thing can be bad! It is important to understand the difference between good carbs and bad carbs.

Good carbohydrates include high fiber foods containing an abundant amount of vitamins and minerals to maintain an even supply of energy. Good Carbohydrates Examples: whole grains, beans, fruit and vegetables. Bad carbs come from white bread, white rice, pastry, sugary sodas and other highly processed foods, which can lead to obesity. If you eat a lot of these bad carbs they will increase your risk for disease.

When you intake carbohydrates, your pancreas releases insulin, this hormone enables you to digest starches and sugars. The more sucrose you have (table sugar) the higher your insulin level becomes. When exercising, the first thing your body burns off BEFORE the fat, is insulin. So the more carbs you have in your body, the longer it takes to lose that weight. If you really want to be healthier and shed off those pounds quickly, cut out the bad carbohydrates and try replacing them for good carbohydrates and protein. The difference you will see in your weight loss is night and day. If you’re not in taking as many bad carbs, then there is less insulin in your body and you will begin to immediately burn off the fat. Here, use this diagram to help you better understand.

Notice the layer of carbohydrates (insulin) in the body above. When you intake carbohydrates, a layer of insulin formulates around the fat like you see in the picture. While many people will exercise and believe they are burning this fat, many have not even reached that stage. Many people will also leave the gym and have a high carb meal without being aware. This leaves your workout merely pointless. Replacing those bad carbs for good carbs and protein will keep that layer of insulin thin. Thus, making your goal to lose weight achievable and your risk for diseases much lower by obtaining a healthy balance in your diet. Feel and look great fast, change your diet and create a better you!

EZDOCTOR: Osteoarthritis Q & A with Rhuematologist: Dr. Santiago

Dr. Santiago-Casas joined Drs. Kahn and Riskin’s practice (South Florida Rheumatologist) after serving as an attending physician and Associate Professor of Medicine in the Department of Rheumatology at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

You can book an appointment with Dr. Santiago-Casas in Hollywood, Florida here: 

FAQ with Dr. Santiago-Casas

What is Osteoarthritis?

It is the most common form of joint disease and represents a leading cause of disability among the elderly. OA is a slowly progressive arthritis that is typically seen in middle-aged to elderly people. The place where 2 bones meet is normally covered with a rubbery material called cartilage. This material allows the bones to slide over each other without causing pain. The disease occurs when the joint cartilage breaks down often because of mechanical stress or biochemical alterations, causing the bone underneath to fail. With this condition there are also bony changes of the joints, as well as deterioration of tendons and ligaments, and various degrees of inflammation.

It is commonly referred to as OA or as “wear and tear” of the joints, but we now know that OA is a disease of the entire joint, involving the cartilage, joint lining, ligaments, and bone. Although it is more common in older people, it is not really accurate to say that the joints are just “wearing out.” OA can occur as a primary entity; however, it can also occur together with other types of arthritis, such as gout or rheumatoid arthritis.

How common is this arthritis?

About 27 million Americans are living with OA, the most common form of joint disease. Studies suggest that the lifetime risk of developing OA of the knee is about 46%, and the lifetime risk of developing OA of the hip is 25%.

What are the joints typically affected by OA?

OA tends to affect commonly used joints such as the hands, great toes, and spine, and the weight bearing joints such as the hips and knees.

What are the most common symptoms of OA?

OA symptoms (what you feel) can vary greatly among patients. The most common symptoms include joint pain and stiffness, joint swelling, grinding noise with joint movement, and decreased function of the joint.

Who gets osteoarthritis?

OA affects people of all races and both sexes. Most often, it occurs in patients age 40 and older. However, it can occur sooner in the presence of other risk factors including family history of OA, obesity, joint injury or repetitive use (overuse) of joints, joint deformity such as unequal leg length, and bowlegs or knocked knees.

How is osteoarthritis diagnosed?

Most often doctors detect OA based on the typical symptoms and on results of the physical exam. In some cases, X-rays or other imaging tests may be useful to tell the extent of disease or to help rule out other joint problems. A rheumatologist can detect arthritis and prescribe the proper treatment.

Osteoarthritis of the knee

The bones that meet at a joint usually do not rub against each other because they are covered by a rubbery material called cartilage. In people with osteoarthritis, the cartilage wears away, and the bones can grind against each other. Sometimes the bones also form spurs.

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Easy and Effective Ways to Manage Stress

Stress can come from many factors: work, home life, finances, family, relationships, etc. It directly effects our health and can cause related damage to our bodies including headaches, wrinkles, thinning of hair, and anxiety. Stress is a part of our daily lives but there are many easy and effective ways to manage it.

Use these methods to better control your stress and get your health back on track:

Identify the Source

By Identifying the source of where your stress if coming from, you can then figure out ways to control and manage it. A great way to figure this out is to start a Stress Journal. Use this to make a daily log of when you are stressed and make a notes of what caused it, how it makes you feel, and your response to it. This will help you narrow down the stress factor.

After you have figured out the source then learn how to cope with it.

Reach Out

Having a good support social group is a key factor in relieving stress. Just having someone to talk to about your stresses will take a major weight off your chest. Even talking about the stress will help get you back on track and give you the strength you need to conquer it.

Be In the Now

You've heard the phrase "Stop and Smell the Roses" right? Well, it is true. When you take time out to live in the present and really appreciate all you have in that moment you forget about all you have to do. Focus on your senses and all that is around you and you should feel the tension leave your body.

Laugh More

Give yourself a little laugh break once in a while. Laughing doesn't only relieve stress but it also releases endorphins that help boost your mood. Watch a funny cat video, listen to a good joke, or call that person you know makes you smile.


Any type of exercise at any age, from walking to swimming, can help with depression and anxiety. Exercising releases those feel-good chemicals into your brain, which once again helps to boost your mood. So take a quick walk at lunch or a hike with the family.

Find More Great Tips and Information about Stress Management visit these great sites:

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6 Simple Healthy Resolutions for 2014

First off, EZDOCTOR wants to wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year! We know that New Year’s Resolutions can be hard to stick with, but by doing these simple changes you can help keep yourself on track and start feeling those benefits sooner.

Skip the soda. Having at least one less can per day can save about 150 calories and 40 grams of sugar (The daily recommendation is 25 or under). Kick the habit completely and you could lose almost 16 lbs. by the end of 2014!  Plus, your body doesn’t recognize those calories you drink as easily, making your brain think you are hungry and overloading on calories and sugar.  New Year’s Resolution Tip: Try adding lemon and lime to you water or trying iced tea if you’re craving something other than water.

Get Some Shut Eye! Skimping on sleep does a lot more than make you cranky or slow the next day, it has also been linked to a greater risk of heart attacks and stress levels. New Year’s Resolution Tip: Make yourself a bedtime time and stick to it! Take at least 30 minutes each night to unwind with a book, bath, or meditation (that means no cell phones, tablets, or laptops).

Focus on the Positive. Research shows that thinking positively and telling yourself that you are going to do it then you most likely will! New Year’s Resolution Tip: Stop focusing on the negative and the past, look to the future and move forward knowing that you CAN do it!

Add Some Greens to Your Diet. Start this year right by getting in your daily recommendation of 5 vegetables a day. It’s actually easier than you think! Eat them raw, steamed, or mixed into your smoothies. Those leafy greens help ward off countless types of cancer. New Year’s Resolution Tip: By adding 3 different vegetables to your morning smoothie you are already getting in more than half of the recommended amount. Also, try baking cauliflower with spices in the oven (Trust us, it’s delicious!)

Do 25 Jumping Jacks…Right Now! By getting your body in motion, just for a little bit a couple times a day, you help trigger your endorphins (happy thoughts) and your blood flow (metabolism). New Year’s Resolution Tip: Yes stick to working out at least 30 minutes a day, but try and spread it out during the day, work included. Keeping your body in motion all day long keeps the weight at bay and a happy and healthy body to stay.

Keep Yourself on Track. With today’s technology it is even easier than ever to keep your calories intake and exercise on track. Download the MyFitnessPal app, pick a goal weight, and let them do the rest. MyFitnessPal helps you easily keep track of foods, exercises, and you can even meet people who will help you reach those goals. OR pick up an Activity Tracker like a FitBit, or Nike’s Fuelband. These nifty bands automatically track your movements and sleep and help you stay on track to that end goal by having you meet daily goals (all with automatic reports and stats sent to your phone or laptop). New Year’s Resolution Tip: Keeping yourself on track and accountable will help you learn and realize what you were doing to pack that weight on and will keep you focused to reach your goals.

Image courtesy of Vlado /

Change Your Life: Be Gluten Free this Holiday Season

The Truth about Gluten

by Brooke Huber

How many of you would like to live a happier and healthier life in just a few short weeks? Why not make this a goal for this holiday season?

More and more research is proving that giving up gluten is the simple answer to all of this. Gluten is a protein combined with starch that naturally occurs in a number of grains including wheat, barley, rye, and some cereals. The truth is, about 30% of us are allergic or highly affected by gluten, and the other 70% are actually sensitive to it. Imagine gluten being the root of some of the most common diseases, such as Auto Immune disease, and even Alzheimer’s. Some of our favorite and most delicious foods are packed with gluten. As some of you may say how hard it is to eliminate eating these foods, are you really ready for the truth? Eliminating all of this from our diets goes way beyond the obvious of just losing weight. Other factors of becoming gluten free result in clearer skin, feeling better emotionally, less joint pain due to inflammation, more brain power, and a higher level of energy. Imagine seeing and feeling all of these results in just weeks. That’s fast!

Here are some quick and easy switches you can make today:

Swap out pasta for quinoa pasta or spaghetti squash

Brown rice wraps or Romaine lettuce can replace wheat wraps

When baking, try almond or coconut flour instead of wheat or rye flour

And if you’re craving pizza, melt a little goat cheese and tomato sauce on a Portobello mushroom or squash

Keep in mind, you don’t need to deprive yourself of eating when you remove gluten. Instead, find smarter alternatives for those gluten-containing foods you used to enjoy. Always remember to double the veggies, cut out the starch, and no excess bread at the dinner table. Also remember to always check for the “gluten free” labels at the grocery store. The science is there, and the results are real, make the change for a better you!

Breast Cancer Awareness Month and How You Can Help

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Show Your Support:

-Run for the Cause

Susan G Komen's Race for the Cure is dedicated to finding a cure. Find a race in your state and show your support here: 

-Buy Anything "Pink"

Products that are helping support research and have the authentic ribbon are giving back usually 20 percent or more.

Find Jewelry, Beauty, and Fashion items that support Breast Cancer Research Here:

-Donate Directly

By donating directly to the National Breast Cancer Month Foundation 100 percent of your donation is used for research.

Donate Here: National Breast Cancer Month :

Hope totes- Buy Business Merchandise 

Your business can even help by buying directly from National Breast Cancer Awareness Month's website, which can be personalized with your businesses' logo. (in bulk starting at 50)

(Photo: Hope Totes) 
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