1. Docs told to drug unruly toddlers

    Parents, watch your tots: There's a new creep in the neighborhood, and it's not the local perv.

    It's the family doctor.

    The American Academy of Pediatrics is out with new marching orders, urging its 60,000 members to "screen" kids for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder starting at the age of four.

    Kids who have the condition are supposed to be treated: First with therapy -- which is a crazy enough thought for a 4-year-old -- then with drugs like Ritalin if they still have even "moderate" signs of those attention deficits or hyperactivity... which goes way beyond crazy.

    The word "outrageous" comes to mind. "Criminal," too -- especially since the powerful stimulant drugs used to treat ADHD aren't even approved for 4-year-olds.

    Makes you wonder if these pediatric experts have ever seen a four-year-old -- because they ALL have attention deficits. They're ALL hyper. It comes with the territory with kids that young, and part of a parent's job is teaching them how to behave.

    The new recommendations don't just extend to the younger kids -- they're also pushing docs to screen older kids, right up to the age of 18.

    In other words, they're growing the market for ADHD meds at both ends of the age spectrum -- and that's what this is really all about: getting more customers for some of the world's most dangerous drugs.

    Kids on these meds have been known to engage in bizarre behavior and even commit acts of extreme violence. One recent study found that patients on stimulant drugs including common ADHD meds were nearly 10 times more likely to commit acts of violence.

    Imagine giving these meds to a four-year-old!

    These drugs have also been linked to hallucinations and addiction. Put all those side effects together, and it's not hard to see why the kids who take them are also more likely to kill themselves.

    There are far better ways to treat the signs and symptoms that make up ADHD in kids of all ages -- and they start with better discipline and better diet.

    In many cases, kids have seen miraculous returns to normalcy by simply avoiding processed foods -- especially the food colorings that an FDA panel now admits may cause or worsen ADHD in some kids.

    Bottom line: Kids who eat better, behave better.

    Just remember that even the best kids act up at least some of the time... it's normal. Handle them the same way your parents handled you -- and I'll bet it wasn't with meds.

    I'm not done with children's health yet -- keep reading for more.

  2. Parkinson's outrage: Meds don't work

    Parkinson's patients will tell you the worst part of the disease isn't always the infamous shakes that mark the condition.

    As bad as those are, there's something that can be even worse: Losing your grip on reality to the hallucinations, confusion, and delusional thinking that often come along for the ride.

    It's a frightening form of psychosis that strikes up to 60 percent of all Parkinson's patients -- and it's almost always caused by Parkinson's drugs.

    But instead of lowering the dose or changing the med, docs often prescribe powerful antipsychotic drugs -- and a new study shows that a full 98 percent of those meds don't even work.

    These are drugs with literally no clinical evidence of effectiveness, period -- and some of them are even known to make the Parkinson's symptoms worse.

    Researchers looked at the records of 2,500 patients given meds for Parkinson's psychosis at VA hospitals in 2008 and
    found that half of them were prescribed quetiapine, also known as Seroquel.

    That's the schizophrenia med given off-label for everything from insomnia to dementia -- often with disastrous results.

    There's no evidence it works for any of those off-label conditions -- and there are no less than four studies that show it does nothing for Parkinson's psychosis. But some of Big Pharma's favorite docs won't let a little science stand in their way -- they're using the drug anyway.

    One doctor not involved in the study told Reuters Health that even though there's no evidence behind Seroquel, many
    docs have had at least some anecdotal success using it... so they'll ignore the research and keep right on dishing it out.

    And even the author of the study in the Archives of Neurology admits to prescribing it -- and says he plans to continue to do so.

    Imagine the uproar if an alternative health doc announced his insistence on using treatments scientifically proven not to work. Heck, the feds would probably shut the guy down for quackery -- but somehow, mainstream docs get a free pass.

    And believe it or not, Seroquel sounds downright reasonable compared to some of the other meds given for Parkinson's psychosis.

    The researchers say a combined 28 percent of prescriptions were for either risperidone (Risperdal) or olanzapine(Olanzipine) -- two drugs that not only do nothing for the psychosis... they're actually known to make the Parkinson's disease worse.

    That's not just inexcusable -- that's malpractice.

    Parkinson's patients often don't have many options for the disease itself -- but a new study finds real promise in traditional Chinese medicine.

  3. Yin vs. yang in Parkinson's treatment

    Centuries before James Parkinson described the "shaking palsy" that would later bear his name, the Chinese were already treating the condition they called "the shakes" with a simple herb.
  4. How not to quit smoking

    A long list of risks just got even longer: The feds now say the anti-smoking drug Chantix can boost the odds of a heart attack.

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