Red meat red flags discredited: Fake meat may be worse for your health

Let them eat steak: Hold the shame, red meat is not bad for you or climate change


Will Coggin


Opinion contributor
Published 5:00 AM EDT Nov 2, 2019

Imagine ordering dinner at your favorite restaurant. You know what you want without hesitation: a perfectly marbled 8-ounce steak cooked medium rare. Just before you order, your date tells you they’ve read that cows cause climate change and that meat might be unhealthy. Suddenly, the Caesar salad seems like a better option.

We’ve all been steak-shamed before. Ever since Sen. George McGovern’s 1977 Dietary Goals report declared red meat a health villain, Americans have been chided out of eating red meat. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, red meat consumption has fallen more than 24% since 1976. During that time, study after study has attempted to tie red meat to a laundry list of health problems.

Until now. 

So many studies, so many flaws

Three studies published recently in the Annals of Internal Medicine did something too few papers do: Ask whether the previous studies had any meat on their bones. 

The researchers who wrote the report analyzed 61 past studies consisting of over 4 million participants to see whether red meat affected the risk of developing heart disease and cancer. 

All three came to the same conclusion: Decreasing red meat consumption had little to no effect on reducing risk of heart disease, cancer or stroke. 

How can so many studies be wrong?

Steaks and and other beef products for sale at a grocery store.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Nutritional research often relies on survey-based observational studies. These track groups of people and the food they eat, or try to tie a person’s past eating habits to a person’s current state of health. The result is something akin to a crime chart from a mob movie with a random red string connecting random suspects trying to figure out “who dunnit.”

Observational studies rely on participants to recall past meals, sometimes as far back as a month. Even when eating habits are tracked in real time using food diaries, issues arise. Research has shown that participants don’t give honest answers and often pad food diaries with typically “good” foods like vegetables while leaving out things like meat, sweets and alcohol. There’s also the matter of having to accurately report portion sizes and knowing the ingredients of the food eaten in restaurants.

Beef may be healthier than fake meat 

The room for error is huge. A much better form of study would be to lock people in cells for a period of time so that you could precisely control what they ate and did and then measure outcomes. Obviously, there are ethical issues with such a structure, which is why observational studies are more common, if flawed.

Some companies like Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat have tried to cash in on the misconception about meat’s healthfulness. According to the market research firm Mintel, 46% of Americans believe that plant-based meat is better for you than real meat. Ironically, the anti-meat messages could be leading people to less healthful options. 

Science on your side: Don’t let vegetarian environmentalists shame you on meat 

Plant-based meat might enjoy the perception of being healthier, but that perception is far from reality. A lean beef burger has an average of nearly 20% fewer calories and 80% less sodium than the two most popular fake-meat burgers, the Impossible Burger and the Beyond Burger. 

Fake meat is also an “ultra-processed” food, filled with unpronounceable ingredients. The National Institutes of Health released a study in May finding that ultra-processed foods cause weight gain. Unlike observational studies, this research was a controlled, randomized study. 

Earth will survive your meat-eating

It’s not just the flawed health claims about red meat that deserve a second look. In recent years, we’ve been told reducing meat consumption is essential to saving the planet. But despite what critics say, even if everyone in America went vegan overnight, total greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) in the United States would only be reduced 2.6%.

Eat better meat: Don’t go vegan to save the planet. You can help by being a better meat-eater.

Since the early 1960s, America has shrank GHG  emissions from livestock by 11.3% while doubling the production of animal farming. Meat production is a relatively minor contributor to our overall GHG levels. In other countries, it may have a higher impact. The solution is not lecturing everyone else to go meat-free. Sharing our advancements would prove to be a more likely and efficient way to reduce emissions than cutting out meat or replacing it with an ultra-processed analogue.

Those who enjoy a good steak now have a good retort the next time they’re criticized for their choice: Don’t have a cow.

Will Coggin is the managing director at the Center for Consumer Freedom.

This content was originally published here.

E.P.A. to Tighten Limits on Science Used to Write Public Health Rules – The New York Times

A E.P.A. spokeswoman said in an emailed statement, “The agency does not discuss draft, deliberative documents or actions still under internal and interagency review.”

On Wednesday, the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology will hold a hearing on E.P.A.’s efforts. A top pulmonary specialist and a representative of the country’s largest nonprofit funder of research on Parkinson’s disease, the Michael J. Fox Foundation, are expected to testify that the E.P.A.’s proposed rule would eliminate the use of valuable research showing the dangers of pollution to human health.

Mr. Pruitt’s original proposal drew nearly 600,000 comments, the vast majority of them in opposition. Among them were leading public health groups and some of the country’s top scientific organizations like the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners said it was “deeply concerned” that the rule would lead to the exclusion of studies, “ultimately resulting in weaker environmental and health protections and greater risks to children’s health.” The National Center for Science Education said ruling out studies that do not use open data “would send a deeply misleading message, ignoring the thoughtful processes that scientists use to ensure that all relevant evidence is considered.” The Medical Library Association and the Association of Academic Health Science Libraries said the proposal “contradicts our core values.”

Industry groups said the rule would ensure greater public understanding of the science behind regulations that cost consumers money.

“Transparency, reproducibility and application of current scientific knowledge are paramount to providing the foundation required for sound regulations,” the American Chemistry Council wrote to E.P.A. in support of the plan.

The new version does not appear to have taken any of the opposition into consideration. At a meeting of the agency’s independent science advisory board this summer, Mr. Wheeler said he was “a little shocked” at the amount of opposition to the proposal, but he was committed to finalizing it. Beyond retroactivity, the latest version stipulates that all data and models used in studies under consideration at the E.P.A. would have to be made available to the agency so it can reanalyze research itself. The politically appointed agency administrator would have wide-ranging discretion over which studies to accept or reject.

This content was originally published here.

Being Surrounded By Chronic Complainers Could Be Damaging Your Health

Complaining might be good in some ways but overall, it doesn’t do much to help us. Sure, it’s a means of letting some stress out but when we become chronic complainers or surround ourselves with chronic complainers’ real problems tend to ensue.

The more we complain and the more surrounded we are by those who complain on a chronic level the more unhappy we become. Actually, according to Jon Gordon who wrote the book ‘The No Complaining Rule’, the harms of complaining could even be so severe that they would be comparable to those of secondhand smoke. If all we do is complain constantly or hear others doing the same, we’re going to be miserable and there is no denying that.

While there is nothing wrong with venting from time to time, the habit that comes with being so negative and ‘whiney’ is not one any of us need to allow forth in our lives. Think about the people in your life and who complains the most? How does that complaining affect you? As someone who grew up in a household where my parents were constantly complaining about even the most minuscule things, I can honestly say it brought me down drastically and could have really influenced the way in which I turned out. Perhaps I would have been more motivated at a younger age had that not been my reality.

In regards to complaining and overall health WKBW Buffalo reported as follows:

It turns out that constant complaining will not only turn off others, but it can actually wreak havoc in other ways, too. Although it’s quite obvious that complaining can bring down your mood and the happiness of others around you, it can also have a large impact on your brain functioning, and it can even take a toll on your body as well.

The more surrounded by complaining we are the more negative we tend to think. Every time we complain our brain works to rewire itself. This meaning that it makes the same reactions much more likely to occur again and again. This in a sense forcing us to get trapped in the same mindset as time passes.

While those who complain all the time might not be able to see how negative they are. They rub off on us and no matter how much we try to help them or offer advice it’s never enough. The more we try the harder we fall into their ways ourselves.

While you might not have noticed just yet complainers on a serious level are able to drain us all drastically. They spread their negative messages to all they can and make us feel like we’re surrounded by something we cannot escape from.

It is also important to understand that while a little complaining might be fine when it becomes constant rather than letting go of stress, it creates more. This is because it increases the production of something known as cortisol within our beings. When this happens we end up facing blood pressure raises and glucose spikes. Too much production of this can increase our risks of several serious health issues and is something we should be avoiding as best we can.

If you’re someone who feels like you’re complaining too much or like the people in your life are becoming too negative, take a much-needed step back and monitor your complaining shut it down before it comes out and cut ties with those who refuse to try and be more positive overall. You’ll be surprised how much more enriched you will begin to feel in a mere week or so.

In regards to being surrounded by chronic complainers Happify wrote as follows:

The chronic complainer can always find something negative to comment on. For a while, you may think this person is simply stuck in a rut—that once their lot in life changes a bit they’ll become more optimistic and happy.

You may even engage in some of the above tactics, trying to help them see the positive or find a solution for their problems.

But chronic complainers are not trying to make the problem go away. In fact, they probably derive real value from the time and attention they get out of complaining.

These people are called “help-rejecting complainers,” says Kowalski, and they can be difficult to deal with and hard to be around. While it may be in your nature to try to “fix” problems—be it challenging situations or negative attitudes—it’s important to know that you are NOT going to change this person.

Instead, focus on your own coping mechanisms, such as minimizing contact with them. Because of the constant negativity, it can be important to set up clear boundaries for yourself, such as steering clear from one-on-one time with these people.

Let’s say you share an office with one of these types. You might start to wear headphones at your desk, post a sign that says “complaint-free zone,” feign being busy when she wants to vent, or attempt to ignore her outbursts. If you consistently find ways not to engage, Cathy the Complainer will eventually seek attention elsewhere.

And if you start feeling guilty, remember this: Their endless complaining and your quest to help will be a frustrating experience for all, so think of your sanity and do your best to limit your exposure.

Once you start paying attention to who’s griping and how they gripe, you’ll have a better chance of hanging onto your happiness in a world where everyone seems to be complaining. Then you can decide for yourself how best to offer support—or run the other way.

For more on this topic please feel free to check out the video below. Remember that you matter and how you feel in life is based around how you act and who you allow within your life. If you want to feel better and better your health overall perhaps complaining is something you need to move away from.

This content was originally published here.

Patients’ Needs, Not Personal Beliefs, Come First in Health Care

From the
start, the Trump administration has issued one regulation after another that uses
religion to deny people — particularly pregnant people, people with low-incomes,
and LGBTQ people — health care access and coverage. Today, we are asking
a federal district court in New York to strike down one of the most pernicious
of these regulations: the refusal of care rule.

The refusal
of care rule
, issued by the Department of Health
and Human Services (HHS), allows health care providers who receive federal
funds to withhold critical information and to obstruct patient’s access to
essential health care invoking their personal religious or moral beliefs — even
in emergencies. The rule means that even if a hospital discovers an employee
would be unwilling to care for all patients equally, they have to remain
employed.

This could be deadly for patients. When asked, HHS refused
to even answer whether the rule would allow a paramedic to refuse to drive a
patient with a life-threatening ectopic pregnancy to the hospital because the
paramedic knows the patient will receive an abortion. You read that right: The
federal agency whose mission
it is “to enhance and protect the health and well-being” of all of us would
allow paramedics to abandon patients in an emergency because they personally
are anti-abortion. Everyone is entitled to their religious beliefs, but those
beliefs cannot be used to discriminate against others or to deny critical
health care. 

The
refusal of care rule’s disregard for the harm to patients is alarming, but,
unfortunately, not surprising. Early on, the Trump administration told the country that it would prioritize religious
beliefs — and, let’s be clear, a very specific set of religious beliefs — above
the needs of patients, regardless of the harms to individuals. And it has
certainly lived up to that promise.

Indeed,
the refusal of care rule is just one example of many. One of the first in this
disturbing trend was the Trump administration’s move in October 2017 to roll back rules under the Affordable Care Act that
ensure people have contraception coverage in their health plans without a
co-pay. The Trump rule would allow almost any employer or university to block health
insurance coverage for contraception for their employees or students because of
their religious opposition to contraception. Fortunately, that rule has been
blocked nationwide.

Then, in
March 2019, the Trump administration set its sights on Title X, the nation’s
only family planning program and the sole source of this kind of care for
millions of low-income patients. HHS issued rules that allow health care providers
to withhold information about abortion from patients — even when the patient
specifically asks about it — based on the provider’s religious opposition. The administration
is still trying to push trusted providers out of the Title X program and invite
in religiously affiliated providers that will withhold critical information
from patients. The Title X rule is already in effect, and participants across
the country are being forced to withdraw from the program. Our case challenging the rules is ongoing.

Most
recently, in May 2019, the Trump administration went after protections for transgender
individuals and others who face sex discrimination in health care and insurance
coverage. HHS has included a proposal
to roll back those protections
by carving out an absolute
exemption for religiously-affiliated health care providers from the prohibition
on sex discrimination. This would not just apply to a handful of providers: One
in six
patients is treated in a Catholic facility each year, and
religious hospitals are also increasingly the only health care option in many
regions. In 2016, 46 communities relied on a Catholic provider as their sole
community hospital
.

In each
instance, the administration cites religious refusals as a reason to undermine
the very programs they are tasked with advancing, including by pushing trusted
health care providers out of those programs and by inviting providers into
health care programs that withhold critical care and information from patients.

It’s clear that the Trump administration is doing everything
it can to strip patients of protections that ensure that they get the proper
health care, and is ignoring the devastating consequences of being denied care,
including by our clients
who were turned
away
from religiously affiliated hospitals when they needed
treatment

If this
rule goes into effect next month as planned, the harms to patients and the
health care providers that care for them will be real and exceedingly difficult
to mitigate. That’s why we’re heading to court today to protect patients and
make sure that the Trump administration does not do any more damage to health
care access.

This content was originally published here.

Nancy Pelosi Tells The Nation To Pray For Trump’s Health After His ‘Very Serious Meltdown’

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was stone-cold serious on Wednesday as she told the country to pray for Donald Trump’s health after she and other Democrats witnessed what they called a “very serious meltdown” during a White House meeting that was supposed to be about the crisis in Syria.

Pelosi said Trump was triggered during the meeting when she expressed her concern over the president constantly making decisions that benefit Russia and Vladimir Putin.

“I have concerns about all roads leading to Putin,” the House Speaker said. “That seemed to have angered the president.”

Video:

PELOSI on Trump: “I think now we have to pray for his health. Because this was a very serious meltdown on the part of the president.” pic.twitter.com/ckhNSeDmrG

— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 16, 2019

Pelosi said:

I pray for the president all the time and I tell him that. I pray for his safety and that of his family. Now we have to pray for his health because this was a very serious meltdown on the part of the president. I expressed my appreciation for what our troops have done in Syria and, by all accounts from the generals, they have just really done the job very well that he’s now pulling out. The explanation for that is what we asked for all members of the House to hear and that was supposed to be tomorrow but then they somehow postponed it today. My concern that I expressed to the president is that Russia has for a long time always wanted to have a foothold in the Middle East and now he has enabled that to happen and I have concerns about all roads leading to Putin, whether it’s a foothold in the Middle East, whether it’s placing in doubt any military assistance to Ukraine, which is to the benefit of Putin, whether it’s placing in doubt our commitment to NATO, Article 5, which again all roads lead to Putin. The list goes on and on. That seemed to have angered the president.

Trump is increasingly unwell

Most of the country recognized when Donald Trump was just a candidate for president that he was unfit to be commander-in-chief. His conduct over the past three years has only confirmed that.

But in recent weeks, his behavior has taken an increasingly dangerous downward spiral. He isn’t just unpredictable and erratic, but he is out of control.

There was a time when Trump’s conduct was just laughable. But his rapidly declining mental health in recent weeks is no laughing matter.

Follow Sean Colarossi on Facebook and Twitter

Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.

This content was originally published here.

Enter For Your Chance to Win Invisalign For Your Child – SheKnows

When the final school bell rings and two months of unstructured free time stretch out before your kids, back-to-school season may feel like a lifetime away. But in reality, it’s just a few weeks, meaning now is the time to schedule all those late-summer doctors appointments. And if your child is one of the millions of kids in North America who will likely seek orthodontic help this year (according to the American Association of Orthodontists), you can add the orthodontist to that list.

With more than 6 million patients, parents and teens are increasingly choosing Invisalign treatment for everything from simple to complex cases. The clear aligners not only have the confidence-boosting benefit of being less noticeable, but because they are removable, they make it easier for teens to enjoy every type of food and care for teeth. They also are more convenient for teens who play instruments and safer for those who play sports. In fact, with Invisalign treatment, there are no emergency visits due to broken wires of brackets. If you want to learn more about Invisalign treatment, click here.

This summer SheKnows has partnered with the Invisalign brand to give parents a chance to win free Invisalign treatment for their child. Enter below for your chance to win. 

And once you’ve entered, follow the Invisalign brand on Instagram for more smiles. 

This post was created by SheKnows for Invisalign Brand. 

This content was originally published here.

Everyday Superhero: Dr. Andrew V., Cosmetic Dentistry – My Jaanuu

We asked Dr. Andrew Vo – a dentist, spin instructor and Captain in the United States Army – for his best self care tips, even when life and work throw a lot at you.

Where are you from? Huntington Beach, CA

What is your favorite part about your job?

I love to change negative experiences a patient may have had into positive ones, building a long and lasting relationship with each and every one of my patients and using my profession to truly change lives for the better.

Why did you choose cosmetic dentistry?

I originally chose cosmetic dentistry because I wanted to help people smile, to help build more confidence, and to help patients live the life that is worth living. In addition to cosmetic dentistry, I also love working on pediatric patients. I decided to go back to school this June to specialize in pediatric dentistry. When I first started my journey in dentistry, I first worked with children and I miss working with them so much. I want to learn more about treating children, become an advocate for pediatric health, and create future mission trips with a foundation of knowledge.

What does self care mean to you?

Taking care of yourself both physically and mentally in order to take care of your loved ones.

You’ve got a lot going on, how do you practice self care?

Being in the fitness community (GritCycle and Equinox) and teaching indoor cycling for these companies, I am so blessed to have met such incredible people. Everyone has challenging days, but these two communities are filled with love, positivity and joy, which helps me practice self care.

Have you always known how to practice self care? If not, how did you find your balance?

I love food, and sometimes the foods that I consume aren’t the best choices. At one time in my life, I was overweight, unmotivated and depressed. I found my balance and changed my life when I found fitness and the people that inspired me to live a better and healthier life.

Why is it important for healthcare professionals to take time for self care?

We all get busy with our jobs and often times we make up excuses not to exercise because we don’t have time or to eat healthy because it takes too long. It is never too late to change, just take one step at a time and you will eventually get there.

How long have you been cycling? What made you decide to become an instructor?

I have been cycling for the past 12 years and decided to become an instructor because I wanted to make a difference and share my story. I wasn’t always in shape and healthy. It was when I hit rock bottom and had to make a choice to either keep going down the dirt road or be proactive and commit to living my best life. It wasn’t easy, but I got there. I love teaching indoor cycling to help people realize that they are loved, that they are accepted, and that it is NEVER too late to change for the better.

Hear more from our Everyday Superheroes here and here.

This content was originally published here.

US Rep. Elijah Cummings Has Died From Complications Of Longtime Health Challenges, His Office Said In A Statement

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland Rep. Elijah E. Cummings died early Thursday at Johns Hopkins Hospital due to complications from longstanding health challenges, his congressional office said. He was 68.

A sharecropper’s son, Cummings became the powerful chairman of a U.S. House committee that investigated President Donald Trump, and was a formidable orator who passionately advocated for the poor in his black-majority district, which encompasses a large portion of Baltimore as well as more well-to-do suburbs.

As chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Cummings led multiple investigations of the president’s governmental dealings, including probes in 2019 relating to the president’s family members serving in the White House.

Trump responded by criticizing the Democrat’s district as a “rodent-infested mess” where “no human being would want to live.” The comments came weeks after Trump drew bipartisan condemnation following his calls for Democratic congresswomen of color to get out of the U.S. “right now,” and go back to their “broken and crime-infested countries.”

Cummings replied that government officials must stop making “hateful, incendiary comments” that only serve to divide and distract the nation from its real problems, including mass shootings and white supremacy.

“Those in the highest levels of the government must stop invoking fear, using racist language and encouraging reprehensible behavior,” Cummings said in a speech at the National Press Club.

Cummings’ long career spanned decades in Maryland politics. He rose through the ranks of the Maryland House of Delegates before winning his congressional seat in a special election in 1996 to replace former Rep. Kweisi Mfume, who left the seat to lead the NAACP.

Cummings was an early supporter of Barack Obama’s presidential bid in 2008. And by 2016, Cummings was the senior Democrat on the House Benghazi Committee, which he said was “nothing more than a taxpayer-funded effort to bring harm to Hillary Clinton’s campaign” for president.

Throughout his career, Cummings used his fiery voice to highlight the struggles and needs of inner-city residents. He was a firm believer in some much-debated approaches to help the poor and addicted, such as needle exchange programs as a way to reduce the spread of AIDS.

A key figure in the Trump impeachment inquiry, Cummings had been hoping to return to Congress after a medical procedure he said would only keep him away for a week. His statement then didn’t detail the procedure. He had previously been treated for heart and knee issues.

His constituents began mourning shortly after his death at 2:45 a.m. on Thursday. The Baltimore archdiocese tweeted that Cummings “generously shared his God-given gifts and talents w/the people of his beloved city, state and nation for so many years. We give thanks for his dedicated service and pray for the repose of his soul.”

Cummings was born on Jan. 18, 1951. In grade school, a counselor told Cummings he was too slow to learn and spoke poorly, and he would never fulfill his dream of becoming a lawyer.

“I was devastated,” Cummings told The Associated Press in 1996, shortly before he won his seat in Congress. “My whole life changed. I became very determined.”

It steeled Cummings to prove that counselor wrong. He became not only a lawyer, but one of the most powerful orators in the statehouse, where he entered office in 1983. He rose to become the first black House speaker pro tem. He would begin his comments slowly, developing his theme and raising the emotional heat until it became like a sermon from the pulpit.

Cummings was quick to note the differences between Congress and the Maryland General Assembly, which has long been controlled by Democrats.

“After coming from the state where, basically, you had a lot of people working together, it’s clear that the lines are drawn here,” Cummings said about a month after entering office in Washington in 1996.

Cummings chaired the Congressional Black Caucus from 2003 to 2004, employing a hard-charging, explore-every-option style to put the group in the national spotlight.

He cruised to big victories in the overwhelmingly Democratic district, which had given Maryland its first black congressman in 1970 when Parren Mitchell was elected.

HEAD BACK TO THE BLACKAMERICAWEB.COM HOMEPAGE

This content was originally published here.

Fredericksburg Dentist, 81, Combines Old-Fashioned Customer Service With New Dentistry Approaches – NBC4 Washington

As a dentist, Dr. John Willhide combines old-fashioned customer service from the last century with the ever-changing technology of this one.

His dental practice has continued to change and evolve during the 51 years he’s worked in Fredericksburg. Instead of shying away from new products and procedures as some others his age might do, Willhide embraces them.

“I mean, look at this stuff,” he said, motioning toward sophisticated equipment and appliances that create crowns, straighten teeth and open airways to improve breathing during sleep. “This technology was not around 20 years ago. It’s great technology, and it’s one of the things that keeps me interested in dentistry.”

It also keeps the 81-year-old still working well past the normal retirement age. He and six employees at Heritage Dental work 32 hours a week, Monday through Thursday.

“I’ve never reached the point that I said, ‘This is it.’ I like the feeling of coming to work,” Willhide said. “I like to be productive, and I like to help people.”

An experience of Cheryl Stamper illustrates that his commitment to customer service is almost as rare as hen’s teeth.

Nine years ago, Stamper’s daughter, Amanda, had a cheerleading accident on New Year’s Eve that knocked out her two front teeth. Amanda was 16 at the time and understandably upset.

Stamper couldn’t get an appointment with their dentist, so she called Willhide on the recommendation of a co-worker and got immediate treatment.

“He and his office were just amazing,” said Stamper, a nurse who lives in Essex County and works in Fredericksburg. “It was kind of traumatic, as you can imagine, but Amanda just trusted him right away. She had many, many more procedures in the coming years, and he was always there for her 24/7.”

Willhide shared his cell and home numbers and told the family to call whenever they needed him — which they did. He also talked with Amanda about college choices, putting in a good word for his alma mater, the University of Virginia, from which he graduated before dental school at what was then known as the Medical College of Virginia. He wrote a reference for Amanda and introduced her to communications specialists at the Pride Institute, a national facility for which he teaches classes to new dentists on how to manage their practices.

Nonprofit Gives DC Kids an Outdoor Education

Since 1996, City Kids has been using nature to help students grow, build skills and set goals they’d have never thought were possible. It’s Leon Harris’ hero this week.

“He just went above and beyond,” Stamper said, adding that the whole family became his patients. “I can’t say enough good about him.”

Alex Jones, a Bowling Green patient, put it this way: “He’s a gentleman, and the people he has around him are very courteous and professional. If he was running for something, I’d vote for him.”

Willhide’s dental office is a one-stop shop for some procedures.

When a patient’s tooth becomes inflamed or infected and requires a root canal, he performs the endodontic treatment, then a technician gets the tooth ready for restoration. The crown — a cap that covers the tooth — is measured, cut from a piece of purple porcelain, baked in a kiln and glazed to match the rest of its owner’s teeth before it’s cemented into place.

It’s all done in Willhide’s office during one appointment of two to three hours. The system, called CEREC, doesn’t totally replace the need for labs because some crowns can’t be made that way, but it’s been a game-changer. Technician Janean Brown has become a wizard at using the system’s wand to make the necessary measurements and get the porcelain prepped for design, Willhide said.

About two years ago, Heritage Dental bought the CEREC system, which costs about $100,000, according to the manufacturer’s website.

‘Life and Death’: Price of Shutdown Mounts for Federal Contractors

The political cost of the ongoing government shut down remains to be seen, but the human cost for federal contractors like Donna Kelly becomes clearer with each new bill she opens. News4’s Cory Smith reports Kelly depends on her paycheck for medication.

“It had been on my Christmas wish list for about 10 years,” Willhide said, adding he took a leap of faith when he believed the timing and technology were right.

In addition, he straightens teeth with clear-aligner devices that have replaced the old metal braces of old. He also works with patients suffering from sleep apnea, a serious sleep disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts, by providing appliances that move the jaw forward slightly to prevent obstruction. The mouthpieces are less cumbersome than CPAP machines — continuous positive airway pressure devices — that patients tend not to wear because of their bulk, he said.

Willhide is one of about 15 dentists in Virginia approved by the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide appliances for former soldiers, sailors and Marines with sleep apnea.

That’s especially important to Willhide, a Green Beret who served with the Army’s 10th Special Forces Group for four years. Sleep doctors in the region diagnose the ailment, then send patients to dentists who measure them for the custom-made devices.

“I like to think we’re an arm of the attack on sleep apnea,” the dentist said, adding that 40 million people nationwide suffer from the problem. “I think it is one of the most important things we do.”

Willhide isn’t the only doctor in town who offers these appliances and services, but there can’t be many who’ve trained with the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Co. Several years ago, the dentist and three staff members went to Orlando to study with the staff known for its top-of-the-line service at luxury resorts.

Nancy Pelosi Goes Back to Her Trinity Roots

Nancy Pelosi got her first taste of politics during her college days at Trinity College in Washington, D.C. News4’s Barbara Harrison was at the university for Pelosi’s town hall with MSNBC.

Sheryl Brown saw the results of their efforts in 2016, when she was named teacher of the year at Harrison Road Elementary School. She’s been a patient of Willhide about 14 years, first going to him when she had several abscesses and a mouth full of problems after not seeing a dentist for years.

“I almost passed out at the thought of even going to a dentist,” she said.

Willhide spent about five years getting her teeth straightened and whitened and dealing with her gum disease. She continues to see him three times a year, but never mentioned her teaching award, which was published in The Free Lance-Star.

“Dr. Willhide and his staff saw it and sent me a beautiful bouquet of flowers at the school,” she said. “Everybody was like blown away.”

The staff also offers gift cards for patient referrals or movie tickets when someone sits in the waiting room longer than expected. If a patient has a death in the family, Willhide offers a book about grief and healing, and those who come into the office feeling under the weather get a gift bag filled with cold medicine, cough drops and a can of soup.

“It’s about the patient as a whole, not just the teeth,” said Rushella Waters, the financial coordinator of the practice. “We practice faith openly here, and the patients know that. They know Dr. Willhide is a caring person, and they love him, they eat him up.”

This story originally appeared in the The Free Lance-Star, http://www.fredericksburg.com/

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