Bambini July 2016 Newsletter 
Practice News
Olga Waters R-PA joined our staff in Feb 2015 - jumping right into flu season, a practitioner shortage, and rapid practice growth. She had an immediate positive effect on our office.

Her integrative approaches to complex health challenges helped many of our patients.  Her experience caring for acutely ill children as an ER clinician also proved invaluable.  Her last day with us will be Tuesday July 26th.  Please join us in wishing her the best.

We have now confirmed that Rafiu Ariganjoye MD MBA will be starting with us on August 1st.  To learn more about him, please see his full clinical bio in our freshly redesigned website here
Resilience Project
Stephen Friend and Eric Schadt, doctors from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai have recently launched an initiative called the Resilience Project.

After studying the genomes of almost 590,000 people, they discovered 13 who had genes for disease like cystic fibrosis and ataxia telangectasia that should have been either severely impaired or even dead.  Instead, they were alive and well -- at least at the time their genes were sampled.  The doctors would like to further explore this interesting observation by collecting genomes from at least another 100,000 people.

What prevented these 13 patients from showing symptoms of these wicked diseases?  Were they taking vitamin D?  Did they have a robust microbiome?  Did they have powerful phytonutrients like TA-65 in their diet?  Did they have other SNPs (mutations) that somehow offset the fatal genes?  Do stem cells somehow figure in? 

It is certainly intriguing that many fatal diseases, from muscular dystrophy to Tay Sachs show little or no symptoms in the first months or even years of life.  Why is that; what epigenetic factors stall off the symptoms? 

For parents of children in our practice that are known to carry genes for serious disorders, information gleaned by the Resilience Project may give a measure of hope!   
Human Photosynthesis
Wouldn't it be neat if we could "eat the sun" - that is harvest energy from the sun the way green plants do? Some recent discoveries have a bearing on this seemingly whimsical thought.
Scientists from Woods Hole's Marine Biological Laboratory reported their work in 2014 on Elysia chlorotica, a brilliant green sea slug that looks like a leaf but is, in fact, an animal. The slug maintains its vivid hue by consuming algae and grabbing their photosynthesis genes. It's the only known instance of a multi-cellular organism co-opting DNA from another.
That same year, researchers from Columbia published their findings that when mammals consume a chlorophyll-rich diet and then are exposed to sunlight, the regeneration of Co-Q10 is enhanced. (Dr. Michael Greger explains briefly in this video beginning at 2:30 mark).
Finally, Arturo Herrera and others from San Antonio reported their discovery that light absorbed by melanin can supply as much as 90% of the energy needs of a cell. This is particularly important in the retina, which is rich is melanin but has a relatively small blood supply for the amount of energy the eye requires. The group has developed a sublingual supplement that enhances this process.
This all sounds a bit complicated, but -- have you ever noticed that you seem to need less food to stay warm and productive in summer than winter, especially if you are eating a diet rich in greens? The research cited above certainly supports this observation.  What does this mean for parents?  This research suggests yet another health benefit from being outdoors. 
Weight Tips for Tots
Not long ago, a girl that had just turned three came in for a check up. We hadn't seen her in a year. When she got off the scale, we were stunned by the reading - 99 pounds! Although this is an extreme case, we are seeing more children packing on the pounds. What can parents do? Here's three research-backed tips:

1. In an article that came out earlier this month in the Journal of Pediatrics, researchers from Ohio State University presented their findings on 977 children. They compared preschoolers who went to bed before 8 PM, between 8 and 9, and after 9 PM. What did they discover? The kids that turned in early were half as likely as those with late bedtimes to be obese 10 years later as teens. Moral of story: put tots down early!


2. A 2013 study from the University of Oregon published in Appetite describes the effect of beverage choice on vegetable consumption in 75 preschoolers. The researchers found that kids who drank water with their meals ate more veggies than kids that were offered soft drinks. Bottom line: keep soda away from tots!


3. The first two were no brainers. The result of this third study is a bit counter-intuitive. BMI data from about 3500 Australian children were culled and the results published in Pediatrics this April. In brief, the researchers found that when parents think their children are overweight, they actually tend to gain weight faster than kids whose parents lack this perception -- sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy. Lesson: nagging kids about their weight might actually backfire.  
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