VHA healthcare for all

“America’s Public Health Care System” with Suzanne Gordon, (suzannecgordon.com/about) interview Against the Grain. kpfa.org/program/against-the-grain/.

Suzanne Gordon describes the Veteran’s Health Administration which is a not for profit healthcare service for U.S. military veterans. She makes the case for supporting it as a functioning healthcare solution to used as a model for providing affordable healthcare for U.S. citizens rather than considering Medicare as a model.

Medicare is a government funded insurance that pays for profit providers for health care services sometimes at predetermined rates that are below what might be charged other patients but often service fees and prescription prices are still very costly compared to what a nonprofit system such as the Veteran’s Health Administration can provide.

When economy is based on profit there is no value placed on non profit generating outcomes such as health of individuals or the environment or on the household chores getting done by a family member. It has been proposed that the opposite of wealth – “well”th – be considered illth – “ill”th. Some areas and a few nations are tracking social progress and health in ways that are not being measured by GDP/GNP Gross Domestic or National Product – the profit/monetary value produced by a nation. See: To Save the Economy We Have to Break Its One Sacred Rule, fastcompany.com

More and more people are having to choose between being able to work or being able to care for chronically ill family members, whether the illness is physical or mental problems or a combination. There has been a significant increase in both children and Senior Citizens with conditions that require 24 hour a day availability of a caregiver. Often health insurance doesn’t cover all of the needs and facilities for residential care are limited in beds available and are costly.

Businesses could help by allowing employees who need to be a caregiver at home more flexible work hours or the ability to telecommute- do some or most of their job from a home computer or telephone. Paid family leave and on-site eldercare are also benefits that many employees would like according to a report by Harvard Business School. Referral services for elder care was also a desire which may first need the creation of more elder care services. Three quarters of employees who were surveyed stated they had some caregiving responsibilities. See: Employers are Clueless When It Comes to Family Caregivers forbes.com/sites/howardgleckman/2019

When healthcare or education or other services are privatized then private businesses can profit from the activity without competition from a government provided service, however it likely will be more costly to the payer whether it is an individual, group insurance purchaser or government purchaser. Providing a service as a not for profit means that all of the purchasing fees or government or business funding can go directly to hiring staff and buying supplies. None of it has to be siphoned off in increasing amounts on a quarterly basis to show shareholders that more and more profit is being produced from the same service recipients.

Privatizing services is good for companies who want to profit as a service provider but rarely does it lead to better service for the recipient at a cost that is economical for the fee payer or funding group.

Disclaimer: Information is povided for eucational purpose withithe guidliesoffair use.

Cancer treatment for zero dollars?

I realize pomegranate peel as a health commodity is a tough sell at the difficult price point of zero dollars but some people can’t afford a quarter million dollars. (The zero dollars is simply referencing the fact that pomegranate peel is thrown out currently and the fruit is purchased for the seeds or used to create juice – so not throwing out the peel would be a zero dollar amount but time to create an extract and to store it in a freezer or dehydrate it into capsules would involve some cost in time and supplies – but we have to start somewhere and the starting point here is recognizing that throwing out the peel is wasting valuable health protective phyto-nutrients.)

Research has to start somewhere. Animal research may be followed by human cell cultures and eventually make it to clinical trials with human patients.  Call me patient zero as I have found it helpful for anxiety and numbness in my fingertips (possibly an early sign of Raynaud’s Disease but I don’t have a diagnosis of that condition – actually I’m not patient zero: https://www.healthboards.com/boards/raynauds-syndrome/963422-raynaud-problem.html,and pomegranate extract can be purchased for more than zero dollars in capsule, microgram doses: https://www.google.com/search?q=pomegranate+extract+250+mg&rlz=1C1CHWA_enUS600US600&oq=pomegranate+extract+250+mg&aqs=chrome..69i57&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8 )(I use more than a 250 mg amount of my homemade extract, a few tablespoons throughout the day in a few different foods would equal about 60-90 grams/4-6 Tablespoons).

Pomegranate extract has been found beneficial in animal research for hypertension  (5) and for cancer, (6).

“PE (Pomegranate Extract) treatment (1 or 10 g/kg), started 4 weeks prior to the DENA challenge and continued for 18 weeks thereafter, showed striking chemopreventive activity demonstrated by reduced incidence, number, multiplicity, size and volume of hepatic nodules, precursors of HCC (Hepatocellular Carcinoma).” (6)

In a more recent post a reference to a book chapter reveals that a human trial for prostate cancer was found beneficial for 85% of the patients. It was a small study with only 40 patients but that is an astonishing success rate for the average cancer treatment, I’ve seen some chemotherapy treatments listed with warnings to not be used for frail older patients as the survival rate was 10% – flip that around and it is a successful poison rate of 90%.

The prostate cancer reference:

“Pomegranate juice given daily for 2 years to 40 prostate cancer patients with increasing PSA levels provides evidence for the possible utilization of a nontoxic option for prevention or delay of prostate carcinogenesis. It is remarkable that 85% of patients responded to pomegranate juice in this study.” Pomegranate Ellagitannins – Herbal Medicine, (4)

(Punicagilanin and other polyphenols from a group called ellagitannins are found in the pomegranate juice and more are available when the entire fruit is used to extract juice. The bioactive phytonutrients seem to start being excreted from the body within 12 hours based on clinical studies, so a daily intake would be required for consistent benefits. Pomegranate Ellagitannins – Herbal Medicine, (4))

Using pomegranate peel or whole fruit extract is not only likely to have fewer negative side effects such as hair loss or severe vomiting but the cost savings isn’t a joke. Even if health insurance covered most of a $250,000 chemotherapy treatment the copays would still add up. Ten percent copays would be $25,000 and 20% would be $50,000. Many people can’t afford that, let alone an uninsured person trying to pay the $250,000. The other side effect that isn’t discussed much is a long term or lingering loss in cognitive skills following chemotherapy. Patients may not be able to return to their former jobs after recovery from cancer with standard chemotherapy treatments. Here’s an article about the sticker shock that can occur with hidden costs for having a baby in our modern hospitals – the specialist doctors may not be considered inhouse and covered by insurance in the same way as the doctor for average deliveries. Families go bankrupt over the copays left from having a baby in the U.S.. That is unusual compared to other developed nations. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/jan/16/why-does-it-cost-32093-just-to-give-birth-in-america

Not developing the cancer in the first place by helping your body to have a strong and healthy defense system is ideal and the Nrf2 promoting foods, which have been discussed in the latest series of posts and which included pomegranate, may all help with daily protection of the body against inflammatory conditions and with detoxification of toxins which may underly increased risk for cancer.

Pomegranate extract and its potential  for health benefits and other Nrf2 promoting foods was discussed in an earlier post: http://transcendingsquare.com/2017/12/24/it-is-not-a-coincidence-that-my-phospholipid-rich-diet-overlaps-with-nrf2-promoting-foods/

Pomegranate extract for the home cook (me) for individual research purposes regarding health and edible characteristics is described in this post: http://transcendingsquare.com/2017/12/31/master-chef-challenge-pomegranate-peel/ The second large batch I made I simmered for 20 minutes instead of 30 minutes as the shorter heating time retained a brighter color and many phytonutrients and antioxidants are colorful. The broth is quite acidic and I’ve primarily been using it in recipes in place of lime/lemon juice or salad vinegar.

Soup is good food and vegetable stock is made with washed produce peels and other sections of some types of produce. Not all produce makes good soup stock but the budget conscious cook tries things and finds out what works, or how to make it work.

Economic history, a collection of free ebooks that include a section on Austrian economics and Carl Menger, see The Essential Henry Hazlitt, 3. Understanding “Austrian” Economicshttps://fee.org/articles/these-five-freedom-philosophers-will-liberate-your-mind/

Capitalism versus socialism doesn’t have to be the only way to look at economic theory – longterm stewardship of the planet and its resources is discussed in the Austrian economics viewpoint and in this more modern and alternative view of our being part of the cosmos as energy beings:

For an alternative viewpoint on the economic value of viewing our time here as stewardship of the planet and its resources: – 10 Characteristics of Highly Evolved Beingshttps://wakeup-world.com/2018/01/10/10-characteristics-of-highly-evolved-beings/

Disclaimer: Opinions are my own and the information is provided for educational purposes within the guidelines of fair use. While I am a Registered Dietitian this information is not intended to provide individual health guidance. Please see a health professional for individual health care purposes.

  • Wenyan Sun, Chunhong Yan, Bess Frost, Xin Wang, Chen Hou, Mengqi Zeng, Hongli Gao, Yuming Kang,and Jiankang Liu,

    Pomegranate extract decreases oxidative stress and alleviates mitochondrial impairment by activating AMPK-Nrf2 in hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus of spontaneously hypertensive rats., Sci Rep. 2016; 6: 34246.   https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5054377/ (5)

  • Anupam Bishayee, Deepak Bhatia, Roslin J. Thoppil, Altaf S. Darvesh, Eviatar Nevo, and Ephraim P. Lansky.,  Pomegranate-mediated chemoprevention of experimental hepatocarcinogenesis involves Nrf2-regulated antioxidant mechanisms., Carcinogenesis. 2011 Jun; 32(6): 888–896. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3314278/ (6)