Statins increase risk of diabetes – FDA changing labeling!

According to Medpage Today, the FDA is changing labeling requirements on statin drugs to    list increased risk of hyperglycemia (diabetes) and transient memory problems! Statin drugs are typically prescribed to help control cholesterol levels, and is often prescribed to those with elevated risk of cardiovascular problems. Oriental medicine can help digestion and cardiovascular health. Herbs such as Hong Qu and Shan Zha are commonly combined in herbal formulas and have been used in the modern condition of high cholesterol.

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Local News Features a Segment on Acupuncture

Here’s a nice short segment by KGW News on the use of acupuncture in Portland showing women receiving treatments for fatigue, menopause, and migraines. There’s a nice video to watch. Check it out here!

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Safety and toxic effects of genetically modified food?

The long-term health effects and safety of genetically modified foods is something I think about alot lately. The more I study and attend seminars, the more it becomes apparent that certain health concerns may be linked to GM food sources. The GM food industry is big corporate business with big budgets and big legal departments. The GM food industry can certainly be looked at with suspicion given stories of overpowering and destroying small farmers because the farmers can’t compete against big corporation budgets and their lawyers. This is no surprise from my awareness of how our legal and corporate system often works. The saying … “follow the money” comes to mind. Large corporations are not about your health and wellness, but driven by profits and increasing stock value. The advancement of GM foods into our food supply chain seems to have moved forward without unbiased, thorough research on the long-term health effects of these crops that are genetically altered to maximize yield and profits. One could venture speculation that they have moved forward through big budget lobbying and corporate connections vs. evaluations over nutrient and health benefits.

One study done by a collective group in Europe reassessed the original data gathered by a major company developing GM food crops in the U.S. The data was originally used by the GM food company to get approval for commercialization, and here’s the kicker…the original data was not made available until the company lost a European lawsuit and was forced to release their toxicology data to the public. Do you see a problem here with a big corporation that commercializes GM crops and refuses to make public it’s toxicology studies on the health effects? Sometimes what happens in regulatory and legal process baffles me because it seems so rediculous and doesn’t make a bit of sense. Unless you look at it from strictly a business, power, and money perspective.

The reassessment of the original data indicates significant toxic effects primarily to the kidneys and livers of the study subjects … rats! Yes that’s right … the same data just analyzed with more thorough statistical analyses contradicts the original conclusions of the GM food company, and validates real health concerns. Of course the big GM food company immediately denounced the new findings as faulty, but if you’re a big corporate lawyer representing your corporate employer what else are you going to say?

Here’s a link to the research article published in the International Journal of Biological Sciences.

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Acupuncture as an Essential Health Benefit!

Starting in 2014, most health plans will be required to offer a comprehensive package of items and services to patients, known as “essential health benefits” (EHB). Under the new law, EHB must cover certain specific services including emergency services, maternity and newborn care, prescription drugs as well as preventive and wellness services, among others.

Please follow this link and add your name to the petition to insure acupuncture is included as a EHB in the new law!


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Study shows acupuncture helps reduce migraine headaches

Acupuncture helps reduce days with migraines and may have lasting effects, according to a new study published in theCanadian Medical Association Journal.

After completing the study, all of the participants — including those in the sham group — reported fewer days with migraines than before the study began. Prior to the study, most suffered monthly migraines, on average six days of migraines a month. After the completing the study, they reported migraines on an average of three days in the month

However, lasting effects were seen only in study participants who received traditional acupuncture. Three months after treatment, people who received traditional Chinese acupuncture continued to report a reduction in migraine days, frequency, and intensity. People who received the sham treatment did not.

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Orenco Acupuncture & Wellness Clinic, LLC supports Hill High Basketball!

Orenco Acupuncture & Wellness Clinic, LLC will be running an add in the 2012 Hillsboro Highschool Boys and Girls Basketball Program. The marketing program helps generate funds for school sports, and I am happy to be able to support the teams participation in the basketball season by helping to offset costs.

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Statin use in postmenopause increases risk of developing diabetes

The use of statins by postmenopausal women increases the risk of developing diabetes! Research from a womens health initiative reported a 48% increase in the risk for developing diabetes in conjunction with taking the cholesterol lowering drugs!


  1. Culver AL, Ockene IS, Balasubramanian R, et al. Statin use and risk of diabetes mellitus in postmenopausal women in the Women’s Health Initiative. Arch Intern Med 2012; DOI: 10.1001/archinternmed.2011.625. Available at:
  2. Johansen KL. Increased diabetes mellitus risk with statin use. Arch Intern Med 2012; DOI: 10.1001/archinternmed.2011.625. Available at:

Oriental medicine can help reduce high cholesterol levels, glucose regulation, and varying stages of menopause symptoms, and can reduce the dependence on drugs!





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Insurance Coverage

Orenco Acupuncture & Wellness Clinic, LLC is an in-network preferred provider with CIGNA as of Jan 2012, and can bill CIGNA for in-network coverage.

Applications for Regence BlueCross BlueShield and AETNA are in process as of Jan 2012 and expect to be included as in-network preferred provider for these programs soon.

Applications for several others will be in process soon!

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Doctors view of thyroid disorder fails to address root cause!

The week before Christmas while I was spending time with my daughter, I happened to catch a segment of a regular show featuring a panel of young attractive Doctors who discuss health issues during their program broadcast. The segment featured a young woman, who had recently been diagnosed with a thyroid gland disorder, who called in to ask about her condition. Naturally she was concerned as she tried to understand how this was going to impact her health and life.

The doctors briefly discussed hyper vs hypo-thyroidism, and treatment. They tried to ease the patients concern by informing her that the treatment with drugs is well established, and that she would have to take the drugs for the rest of her life!!!

Typically, the hormone produced by the pituitary gland or thyroid is supplemented, replaced, and/or regulated by the use of replacement hormones. Several forms of drugs such as synthetics and bioidenticals are available.

What concerns me is not so much what they said, but what they didn’t say! First of all they did not discuss the cause of the thyroid problem. Secondly they did not tell the woman that the drugs only treat the symptoms, and do nothing to address the root cause of the disorder. Thirdly, they did not inform her that she would probably have the dosage of her medications gradually increased over time in order to maintain their effect or that she might run a gamut of several drugs before finding the one that she responded to best. I’m not even going to mention the potential side effects such as arrythmia, heart failure, menstrual irregularities, tremors, insomnia, headaches … OK I lied … or the contraindications and possible interactions with diseases, drugs, or supplements. Oh and let’s hope she has medical insurance to cover the cost of her lifelong prescription.

Thyroid gland disorders are most common in women. A type of hypothyroidism known as Hashimotos disease is the most common form of thyroid disorder in our country. The root cause of this disease is due to a disorder in the immune system not the thyroid gland itself. The immune disorder results in the affected individuals immune cells attacking tissues or enzymes in the thyroid gland and gradually destroying them. This attack of ones own body by their immune system is referred to as an auto-immune disease. This means there is a progressive loss of thyroid gland tissues and thus a gradual decline in thyroid hormone.

Drugs help replace the loss of thryoid hormone (in the case of hypothyroidism), but because the thyroid is continually being destroyed by the auto-immune condition the amount of natural hormone produced by the thryoid gland continues to decrease. This means that the drugs will have to be continually monitored and the doses adjusted (increased) to maintain control.

Treating the root cause of the disease is always a good approach if one hopes to manage or heal a disease or in the least slow it’s progression and minimize the use of drugs. Addressing the patients immune system and the auto-immune condition is a key element in helping the patient manage their disease with the most beneficial results, for example, in the case of Hashimotos disease. This approach helps reduce the destruction of the thyroid gland by a disregulated immune system, and helps slow down the gradual decline in thryoid function.

There are steps that can be taken to help the immune system function properly. Some of them relate to diet and lifestyle choices. Treating the modern disease classification of autoimmune disease using Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine is established in China following principles that date much further in the past (Hou, W., Xu, G., Wang, H. (2011). Treating autoimmune disease with chinese medicine. China: Churchhill Livingstone Elsevier). Modern scientific research has turned out numerous papers in the last decade showing acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine has a regulatory effect on the immune system and can benefit the immune system.

The use of acupuncture and/or Chinese herbal formulas or supplements may be a better first approach to managing auto-immune diseases such as Hashimotos disease or in the least used as supplemental complimentary care for a more comprehensive treatment program.

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