First of all, this is a really nice quality pillowcase; it is silky smooth, beautifully made, and washes wonderfully. But here is what separates this covering from all the other nicely crafted, soft-as-can-be competitors; information straight from ...

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"Doc of Ages" - 5 new articles

  1. Face a new-ish you in the a.m!
  2. Dancing the Bewegungschöre
  3. Dancing the Soul
  4. The Good Gut
  5. Dental Probiotics: Bacterial Dental Insurance?
  6. More Recent Articles

Face a new-ish you in the a.m!

First of all, this is a really nice quality pillowcase; it is silky smooth, beautifully made, and washes wonderfully. But here is what separates this covering from all the other nicely crafted, soft-as-can-be competitors; information straight from, an online publisher of abstracts from medical journals.

Researchers from South Korea published a study in 2012 comparing outcomes in just over 60 volunteer sleepers sleeping(1), half of whom plopped their heads on pillows covered in cases made with copper-impregnated fibers, the other half just snoozing on the usual coverings. They theorized that the copper-loaded variety would reduce skin wrinkles because the mineral is known to promote the production of skin proteins and stabilize the matrix of skin as well. A stable and protein-loaded skin matrix just can't be bad when it comes to the effects of sun, gravity, and aging as the years progress.

Expert 'skin graders' were called in to check out the faces of both groups. Neither graders nor subjects knew which group got copper and which group got none. At 4 and 8 weeks into the two month study, copper sleepers had a significant reduction in 'crow's feet' wrinkles while the control group demonstrated no change at all. Furthermore, 3-D studies measuring three 'roughness parameters' (as in 'gee that's rough, you're skin's a mess?!?) also strongly favored copper bedding; notably improved roughness indicators were present only in the copper group with an average improvement of 9% per month. These results echo earlier findings by an Israeli study conducted in 2009(2). These volunteers, aged 40-60, spent a mere month on copper or no copper cases. As shown in the study above, expert graders (two of them, a dermatologist and a cosmetologist) agreed there was significant improvement in wrinkles, crow's feet, and overall appearance.

My own study group of one--me that is--concurs! I figure that boldly eyeing one's face in a magnifying mirror first thing in the morning, with reading glasses on makes one an amateur skin grader, and I'm attesting that the fine wrinkles, the crow's feet, and general roughness is notably better. Alas, too little too late for the big furrows. Nevertheless, I'm a fan.

As to hair? No scientific data on this claim (the no more bedhead thing). My hair is too fine and too thin to even think about standing up in a bedhead sort of way.
1) Baek, JH, et al. Reduction of facial wrinkles depth by sleeping on copper oxide-containing pillowcases: a double blind, placebo controlled, parallel, randomized clinical study. J Cosmet Dermatol. 2012 Sep;11(3):193-200. doi: 10.1111/j.1473-2165.2012.00624.x.
2) Borkow, G, et al. Improvement of facial skin characteristics using copper oxide containing pillowcases: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel, randomized study. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2009 Dec;31(6):437-43. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-2494.2009.00515.x. Epub 2009 May 20.

p.s. Available at Amazon as of 9/16/17 for $43.92; $55.00 at Nordstrom.  AmazonCopperCase 

Dancing the Bewegungschöre

I love German verbal portmanteaus.  In order to create big words for simple concepts, they just mash-up two or more words into a multi-letter string such as the noun Handschuhschneeballwerfer (a person who wears gloves to throw snowballs) or the verb Sontagspaziergangmachen (to go for a Sunday walk).  I can’t help but wonder if we had a single word for these activities, would we be more likely to grab friends or family and head for the park on a wintry Sunday afternoon for a jolly snowball fight?
But back to Bewegungschore.  I googled ‘dance’ and ‘mood’ and hit the jackpot by stumbling across information on Rudolf von Laban, a dancer and movement theorist who developed the concept of  Bewegungschore in the early 20th century.  That tongue-twister of a word translates as ‘movement choir’ where participants don’t sing but rather dance together as a shared experience in the joy of moving.  He elaborated his vision further with another mega-word, namely bedürfnislosigkeit meaning demandlessness as in having one’s time and energy free to indulge in ‘festive exaltation’.

Well now, what could be better really than to a bedürfnislosigkeit state on a Saturday a.m in order to participate in a laughing, lively Bewegungschöre, shaking those parts of your body with which you are in contact as you oscillate with a group of like-minded dancers?

In Denver? Looking forward to seeing you some Saturday soon as we dance in a movement choir with Lia Ridley at Dancing the Soul, 950 Jersey St, Denver, CO  80220.

Dancing the Soul

This Virgo girl just passed that milestone birthday that lands me on the Medicare rolls! In order to meet the event with maximum enthusiasm and joy, I spent that celebratory Labor Day weekend morning at Denver's Dancing the Soul studio doing just that, belly dancing my soul as if no one was watching.  For those of you with whom I've never had the pleasure of a face-to-face meeting, that's me in the over-the-top, so-not-me, two piece outfit front row left.

Are you live and local in the Denver area?  Consider checking this class out, 11:00 a.m. on Saturdays, The lovely lady bottom right in the above photo is our instructor Lia Ridley.  Not so sure this is your thing?  Read on!

"Belly dance is like glitter: It not only colors your life, it makes you sparkle. You find it everywhere, and in everything, and it's nearly impossible to get rid of. "
— Anonymous

"Sequins, sass, and sisterhood"

Professor Angie Moe of Western Michigan University investigated the effects of belly dancing on the perceptions that older women had about their bodies, specifically how age related changes were a source of shame and discomfort.  Interviewing aging ladies who participate in this activity, she determined that shaking whatever part of you that still moves enough to more or less shimmy is an excellent way to regain, reclaim, rebuild, and redefine that which constitutes bodily comfort and joy.  

May I add that it's a lot of laughing and a lot of fun?

The Good Gut

Taking Control of Your Weight, Your Mood, and Your Long-Term Health
I have spent 30+ years in the practice of internal medicine attempting different strategies to change behavior when bad habits happen to good people.  Too often, lifestyle epiphanies occur after major shake-ups such as the diagnoses of diabetes or other serious conditions.  I particularly like the ‘bibliotherapy’ approach, and I’m always on the lookout for good self-help book recommendations to add to my short list of those that truly effect change.

I am pleased to report here that “The Good Gut” is just such a book, well-written in a way that makes it one of those notable non-fiction works that you’ll read cover to cover, not losing interest or comprehension somewhere between a paragraph’s start and finish (no flipping ahead to see how much longer this chapter!).  The Drs. Sonnenburg do not tediously repeat and overstate the standard health caveats to avoid sugar, lose weight, and exercise, but rather expand on their primary point, namely the importance, care, and feeding of our fellow life bacterial travelers. 

As a regular reader of the latest medical literature, much of the content herein was not news to me.  The presentation, however, in everyday layperson language, was personally compelling in ways that the New England Journal of Medicine is not.  A recent search on the NEJM web-site for ‘gut microbiota’ returned 28 articles, not one of which with a title so compelling as to change my diet for life.  Oh right, I’ve already done that, changing out breakfast foods long before the Sonnenburgs’ book and the rest of menu as a result of this read.

I will be recommending this book to my patients, and I also commend it to you.  This book will be released 4/21/15.

Dental Probiotics: Bacterial Dental Insurance?

Our microscopic fellow travelers are all the rage today, rating their own study group known as the Human Microbiome Project.  I’ve long recommended intestinal probiotics for years to my patients as they’re treated for infections in an effort to avoid some of the intestinal upset associated with antibiotics.  I never gave a thought to probiotics for oral and dental health until I was invited to try this Pro-Dental for review.


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