blood pressure meds

  1. Blood pressure meds cause crippling falls

    Common meds lead to falls

    Seniors are more likely to fall and more likely to suffer injury when they do -- including the devastating and crippling injuries that can lead to loss of independence and even an early death.

    But don't blame age alone for all those falls.

    No, the real reason for many of those tumbles is that most seniors are on enough drugs to knock over an elephant, and new research confirms that some of the most commonly used drugs, like blood pressure meds, can increase the risk of injury and death due to falls.

    And odds are, you know someone on these meds right now.

    You might even be taking them yourself, because these drugs are blood pressure meds such as ACE inhibitors, diuretics and beta-blockers.

    If you happen to be on them -- or have ever tried them -- then you probably know firsthand how they can make you feel weak, dizzy, unsteady and so off-kilter that sometimes it feels like the floor is sliding out from under you.

    That's exactly why taking them will make you up to 40 percent more likely to suffer a hip fracture or head injury due to a fall, according to the study of nearly 5,000 seniors.

    The great irony here is that injuries from falls are actually responsible for nearly as much death and disability as the heart attacks and strokes blood pressure meds are supposed to prevent.

    It's as if by taking these meds you're trading one bad risk for another -- but that's a trade you just don't have to make.

    In many cases, blood pressure can be controlled naturally with basic lifestyle changes such as weight loss and safe supplements such as hawthorn berry and gingko biloba as well as nutrients including calcium, potassium, magnesium and coenzyme Q10.

    And if you really want to make sure you remain rock-steady and unlikely to fall, there are two steps you need to take.

    First, add a vitamin D supplement to your regimen ASAP. Even mainstream health officials now admit that boosting D levels can lower the risk of fall and help prevent crippling breaks if you do take a spill.

    And second, get a little movement every day.

    One study I told you about recently found that a little strength and balance training can reduce the number of falls by nearly a third, and you can read more about it in this free report from my House Calls archives.

  2. Turn down the heat with therapy

    It's one of the Holy Grails of the drug industry: A pill to end hot flashes.

    Think that's a big market? You bet it is! Up to 80 percent of all women battle hot flashes during menopause, making a would-be treatment a billion-dollar dream for the drug industry.

    But for women, that dream is more like a nightmare as they play guinea pig. Instead of being given safe, natural, and proven treatments for their hot flashes, they're given unproven antidepressants, risky anti-seizure drugs, and even blood pressure meds... and almost all of them are being used off-label.

    It's a massive public health experiment that's hurt far more women than it's ever helped.

    But you don't need to swallow those pills, or face side effects, to get some relief, because the latest research points to a pair of easy, drug-free solutions: ordinary group therapy and self-help.

    Researchers recruited 140 women who reported hot flashes and night sweats at least 10 times a week and assigned them to either group therapy, self-help, or no treatment at all.

    The groups met four times a month, while those who got self-help had one meeting and a phone call with a shrink, but after that relied on a book and CD.

    Six weeks later, 73 percent of the women who got self-help reported meaningful improvements, compared to 65 percent of those in group therapy, and 21 percent of those who got no treatment at all.

    And six months later, those improvements held.

    Of course, therapy didn't quite work for everyone. But therapy isn't your only option here, either, because there are other proven natural ways to get safe drug-free relief from the worst symptoms of menopause.

    One recent study found that aerobic exercise can slash the number of hot flashes -- and a recent follow-up finds that getting sweaty four days a week can beat the other signs of "the change" as well, including night sweats, mood swings, irritability, and more.

    Other safe options backed by science include acupuncture -- which beat sham acupuncture in one study on hot flashes -- as well as a combination of St. John's wort and black cohosh. And, of course, many women get through menopause with the help of custom-made bio-identical hormones.

    An experienced naturopathic physician can help find which option is best for you.

  3. Polypill madness strikes again

    Right now, researchers are busily testing the limits of the ultimate in supersized meds: A drug that combines FOUR different pills in one, giving you a chance to swallow once... and experience side effects in four different ways.
  4. It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world

    Crazy is pumping hundreds of millions of people full of dangerous drugs they don't need for conditions that can be controlled safely and naturally. Insane is forcing those same risky meds on even more people -- including millions who don't even have the conditions those drugs are supposed to treat.

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