Letters to the Editor – February 2012

Letters to the Editor - Vitality MagazineIs the Meat Lobby Behind Pro-Protein Studies?

Re: “Lower Protein Consumption Can Increase Calorie Intake, Weight,” in the December 2011/January 2012 issue. Dear editor: When we talk about protein, we are usually referring to animal protein. I would take the results of this study with a grain of salt and recommend to all those thinking of increasing their protein intake to watch the documentary “Forks over Knives” to get a more balanced view and make an informed decision. It would also be very useful if Mr. Downey could find out and print who is funding these studies – maybe the meat industry in this case? Norma Martinez

Dietary Supplements for Furry Friends?

I read the article in the last issue of Vitality on pet health (“The Wonder of Proper Nutrition“) and was intrigued by your comments at the end of the article. You recommended something called Andrographis powder for strengthening immunity and preventing cancer. What is this and where can it be obtained? I live three hours east of Toronto so driving in is rarely an option. Like many people, making my own pet food is not really an option, but I would love to see an article about supplementing a diet for healthier animals. I lost a cat to cancer last year, but through alternatives, was able to extend his life by about three months and keep him healthy right to the end. Janice Gannon

Julia Woodford responds: Andrographis is a herb native to India and Sri Lanka that has been shown to reduce inflammation (heat) and fight viral infection. It is used as a principal ingredient in traditional Chinese medicinal formulas for lung support against colds. I buy Andrographis powder at the Big Carrot’s Wholistic Dispensary. You can probably order it online at https://www.thebigcarrot.ca. As for Andrographis for cats, I’m not sure about that. I put it in my dog’s food every day, but cats have a different metabolism. One thing that’s highly recommended for cats is digestive enzymes. I buy Prozyme at Global Pet Foods. My cat gets a half teaspoon in his food every day. I also add a half teaspoon of Greens+, the powdered supplement. 

Simply the Best

Vitality Magazine is simply the BEST health magazine published in Canada. No need to say more. Jean-Raoul Fournier, North York, Ont.

Cervical Cancer Haunted by Stigma

Re: “Management of Cervical Dysplasia and Human Papillomavirus,” by Dr. Marianne Marchese, from the October issue. Dear editor: Reading this article, I felt very uncomfortable … the most disturbing issue I have with the article itself is  the “list of risk factors.” Cervical cancer, like lung cancer, is haunted by stigma and judgment. The  first  risk factor being “multiple partners” is incorrect and gives the impression that females with multiple partners (ie., sex trade workers, women with low virtue or possibly low standards) are the only ones who need to fear being afflicted by this virus. In fact, the greatest risk factor is skin-to-skin contact with a partner who has  high-risk HPV. So what is your article in fact saying? Is a sex trade worker safer with her multiple circumcised partners, than a woman with one uncircumcised partner? This article has just contributed to keeping this cancer in the shame corner and overlooking the role and responsibility that men play in this. Sincerely, Cathy Tassone 

‘Senior Citizen’ is Degrading, too

Re: “Who are you calling an ‘old lady?’,” a letter in the December 2011/January 2012 issue. Dear editor: Is there a more repulsive phrase in the English language than “little old ladies?” What a disgusting, demeaning and degrading term! We are women and we are people. Women in their 60s are NOT senior citizens, regardless of who chooses to make that categorization (the government). The term elderly is the appropriate, non-gender term to use when discussing people in their 80s. Most people I am acquainted with who are in their 60s are still working, still paying taxes and still participating in every way possible in society. The ‘senior citizen’ label is not one to wear with pride. I intend to do my best in every way possible to curb this degrading usage. Don’t even get me started on the term “boomer” (ugh!) Catherine Orion, Caledon, Ont.

Readers: To have your say, email your letters to: letters@vitalitymagazine.com, or write: Vitality Magazine, 356 Dupont Street, Toronto, ON M5R 1V9. You can also post your comment on our website at the end of any article and view the comments of others around the world. (Note: Vitality reserves the right to edit for clarification or space constraints.)

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