Sprague Word

The future and more from Richard Sprague

Archive for July, 2004

Posted by sprague on July 13, 2004

Get your LDL level below 70, says a panel at the National Institutes of Health’s National Cholesterol Education Program in this WSJ article: WSJ.com – New, Lower Goal Is Set for Cholesterol

Note that my LDL is around 85, which is well under the mainstream guidelines that say you should keep it under 100. The Merck 2002 Heart Protection Study proved that Zocor reduces risks of heart disease, and the Prove-It trial showed that getting LDL=62 from Lipitor resulted in fewer deaths than people who only got it to 95.

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Posted by sprague on July 13, 2004

The WSJ [subscription required] reports on several sites that buy and sell used textbooks:

www.bn.com and www.TextbookBuyer.com

“A used copy of “Organic Chemistry” — the 1,296-page premed bible — that retails new for about $140 — recently fetched the seller $46 at http://www.Bookbyte.com. It brought in $43 at http://www.eCampus.com.”

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Posted by sprague on July 6, 2004

Test your body for mercury levels: an article from WSJ.com – Tests Emerge to Assess Risks From Eating Fish, summarizes some of the places that will test you for a fee:

Body Balance sells a $59.95 home mercury test that involves clipping a hair sample.

Quest Diagnostics in Peterboro, N.J., one of the nation’s largest medical-test companies.

Canyon Ranch offers health packages like its $530-plus “Optimal Health Basic Prevention” program.

But what do you do if the test comes back with too-high levels? Answer: chelation therapy, from places like Sanoviv Medical Institute in Baja, Calif. which charges $10K for a two-week program.

Some of the drugs available: Succimer, which is approved to treat lead poisoning, is used off-label to treat mercury exposure. Another more controversial chelation agent is EDTA (ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid). The drugs work by binding with metal ions in the blood. But be careful: the same activity that reduces mercury in your body will also reduce levels of important minerals like zinc, so pop vitamins while on the program.

How much mercury is safe? See the FDA’s report.

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