Friday, September 4, 2015

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

An Introduction to Benfotiamine


      Benfotiamine is a fat soluble derivative  of Vitamin B1.     Since 1993, Germany licensed benfotiamine as Milgamma for sciatica.  I am told that it is also used there, rather effectively.  for other types of nerve pain, like radicultitis and the pain from herpes zoster or shingles..  German physicians claim that there are no known side effects to its use. In addition, this is an inexpensive therapy which is over the counter in the United States.

                       Here in the US, it took much longer for us to study it.  Dr. Michael Brownlee at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine studied its use in rats. His study found that benfotiamine could stop deterioration and damage within blood vessels.  This is particularly interesting to Type I and Type II diabetics, because even well controlled diabetics are eventually at risk for progressive glycation of their cells and for cellular damage which may ultimately result in nephropathy, peripheral and other  neuropathies, diabetic gastroparesis, etc.   (In English, this means that higher than normal cellular levels of glucose result eventually in damage to the blood vessels which translate into possible blindness, kidney failure, chronic foot and leg pain, a slow and ineffective gastrointestinal system, interruptions in wound healing, disruptions in immune function, and cardiovascular damage.)    Benfotiamine is suspected to prevent glycation on the cellular level thus helping to prevent these issues.

                      Other studies have indicated that it appears to improve wound healing and immune system dysfunction, not only in diabetics, but in others as well.

                    This also may be an important supplement for us to discuss with our veterinarian should we have a diabetic dog or cat. Some veterinarians would probably support a careful trial run of such a supplement.

                   Importantly, despite benfotiamine's great value as a preventive for potential diabetic complication, it may have other uses which may not yet have been fully appreciated.  For example, those who have experienced a lightning strike and have not died, often experience significant nerve damage and pain afterward, and treatments for such are limited, expensive, and of patchy value.  Benfotiamine may have value in improving the pain level and outlook in this population of patients.  I suspect it may have value in those with a history of vascular disorders. Some patients with cognitive disorders have been using it, as have some patients with multiple sclerosis.  Certainly, a lot more study of this substance within selected patient populations is warranted.

              Additional cautions: Supplements should not be given to pregnant women unless ordered by their physicians.  Patients taking a number of other medications should also consult their physicians before adding other supplements.  Patients receiving treatment for cancer should run any supplement by their physicians and their pharmacists because drug interactions may not yet be fully recognized or fully known.

Read more about this at:

Milgamma is known to be available in the following nations:
It is also being studied by the Russians.

It may be available in other nations as benfotiamine.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Augason Farms Products Available In Store at These Wal-Mart Stores

Augason Farms is in the process of launching a new website which should make reviewing their available wares and checking out, easier.

                Periodically, I mention that my family makes good use of a number of the Augason Farms dehydrated and freeze dried foods.

                I must buy Augason Farms #10 cans and other products via mail or occasionally something I need is available at  However, many of you in other states can buy Augason Farms products in store, which enable you to stock up without paying any postage at all !

This is a listing recently published by Augason Farms itself indicating which Wal-Marts carry their products in store.

  Anchorage 3101 A St.
  Anchorage 7405 Debarr Rd
  Eagle River 18600 Eagle River Rd
  Fairbanks 537 Johansen Expy
  Juneau 6525 Glacier Hwy
  Kenai 10096 Kenai Spur Hwy
  Kodiak 2911 Mill Bay Rd
  Wasilla 1350 S Seward Meridian Pkwy
  Buckeye 1060 S Watson Rd
  Bullhead City 2840 Highway 95
  Casa Grande 1741 E Florence Blvd
  Chandler 2750 E Germann Rd
  Cottonwood 2003 E Rodeo Dr
  Flagstaff 2601 E Huntington Dr
  Gilbert 5290 S Power Rd
  Gilbert 2501 S Market St
  Glendale 5605 W Northern Ave
  Kingman 3396 Stockton Hill Rd
  Lake Havasu City 5695 Highway 95 N
  Mesa 4505 E Mckellips Rd
  Mesa 240 W Baseline Rd
  Mesa 2725 E Mckellips Rd
  Page 1017 West Haul Road
  Payson 300 N Beeline Hwy
  Prescott Valley 3450 N Glassford Hill Rd
  Queen Creek 21055 E Rittenhouse Rd
  Safford 755 S 20th Ave
  Show Low 5401 S White Mountain Rd
  Winslow 700 Mikes Pike St
  Yuma 2900 S Pacific Ave
  Yuma 8151 E 32nd St
  Yuma 2501 S Avenue B
  Crescent City 900 E Washington Blvd
  Redding 1515 Dana Dr
  Rocklin 5454 Crossings Drive
  Roseville 900 Pleasant Grove Blvd
  Alamosa 3333 Clark St
  Avon 171 Yoder Avenue
  Colorado Springs 1622 S Academy Blvd
  Cortez 1835 E Main St
  Craig 2000 W Victory Way
  Delta 37 Stafford Ln
  Durango 1155 S Camino Del Rio
  Elizabeth 2100 Legacy Cir
  Grand Junction 2881 North Ave
  Grand Junction 2545 Rimrock Ave
  Gunnison 900 N Main St
  Montrose 16750 S Townsend Ave
  Monument 16218 Jackson Creek Pkwy
  Pagosa Springs 211 Aspen Village Drive
  Parker 11101 S Parker Rd
  Rifle 1000 Airport Rd
  Salida 7865 W Us Highway 50
  Woodland Park 19600 E Us Highway 24
  Ammon 1201 S 25th E
  Blackfoot 565 Jensen Grove Dr
  Boise 8300 W Overland Rd
  Boise 7319 W State St
  Boise 3233 N. Cole Rd.
  Burley 385 N Overland Ave
  Chubbuck 4240 Yellowstone Ave
  Hayden 550 W Honeysuckle Ave
  Idaho Falls 500 S Utah Ave
  Jerome 2680 S Lincoln Ave
  Meridian 4051 E Fairview Ave
  Meridian 795 West Overland Road
  Meridian 5001 N. Ten Mile Rd.
  Moscow 2470 West Pullman Road 2
  Mountain Home 2745 American Legion Blvd
  Nampa 2100 12th Ave Rd
  Nampa 5875 E Franklin Rd
  Nampa 175 S Middleton Rd
  Ponderay 476999 Highway 95
  Post Falls 3050 E Mullan Ave
  Post Falls 6405 W Pointe Parkway
  Rexburg 530 N 2nd E
  Smelterville 583 Commerce Drive
  Twin Falls 252 Cheney Dr W
  Apple Valley 7835 150th St W
  Willmar 700 19th Ave Se
  Polson 36318 Memory Lane
North Dakota  
  Bismarck 2717 Rock Island Pl
  Mandan 1000 Old Red Trail Nw
  Carson City 3770 Us Highway 395 S
  Elko 2944 Mountain City Hwy
  Fernley 1550 Newlands Dr E
  Reno 5260 W 7th St
  Winnemucca 3010 Potato Rd
  Albany 1330 Goldfish Farm Rd Se
  Beaverton 17275 Nw Cornell Rd
  Bend 20120 Pinebrook Blvd
  Coos Bay 2051 Newmark Ave
  Cornelius 220 N Adair St
  Corvallis 1840 Nw 9th St
  Cottage Grove 901 Row River Rd
  Eagle Point 11500 Hannon Rd
  Eugene 4550 W 11th Ave
  Grants Pass 135 Ne Terry Ln
  Gresham 2444 E Powell Blvd
  Hermiston 1350 N 1st St
  Hood River 2700 Wasco St
  Island City 11619 Island Ave
  Klamath Falls 3600 Washburn Way
  Lebanon 3290 S Santiam Hwy
  Mcminnville 2375 Ne Highway 99w
  Medford 1360 Center Dr
  Medford 3615 Crater Lake Hwy
  Milwaukie 15600 Se Mcloughlin Blvd
  Newport 160 Nw 25th St
  Ontario 1775 E Idaho Ave
  Pendleton 2203 Sw Court Ave
  Portland 4200 Se 82nd Ave
  Redmond 300 Nw Oaktree Ln
  Roseburg 2125 Nw Stewart Pkwy
  Saint Helens 2295 Gable Rd
  Salem 3025 Lancaster Dr Ne
  Salem 5250 Commercial St Se
  Salem 1940 Turner Rd Se
  Sherwood 21320 Sw Langer Farms Pkwy
  Springfield 2659 Olympic St
  Springfield 2730 Gateway Street
  Tigard 7600 Sw Dartmouth St.
  Wood Village 23500 Ne Sandy Blvd
South Dakota  
  Rapid City 1200 N Lacrosse St
  Spearfish 2825 1st Ave
  American Fork 949 W Grassland Dr
  Cedar City 1330 S Providence Center Dr
  Cedar Hills 4689 W Cedar Hills Dr
  Centerville 221 W Parrish Ln
  Clinton 1632 N 2000 W
  Ephraim 777 N Main St
  Harrisville 534 N Harrisville Rd
  Heber City 1274 S Us 189
  Herriman 5056 W 13400 S
  Hurricane 180 N 3400 W
  Layton 745 W Hill Field Rd
  Lindon 585 N State St
  Logan 1150 S 100 W
  Magna 3555 S. 8400 W.
  Midvale 7250 Union Park Ave
  North Logan 1550 N Main St
  Ogden 1959 Wall Ave
  Orem 1355 Sandhill Rd
  Payson 1052 Turf Farm Rd
  Perry 1200 S Commerce Way
  Pleasant Grove 1707 West State Street
  Price 255 S Highway 55
  Provo 2255 N University Parkway
  Richfield 10 E 1300 S
  Riverdale 4848 S 900 W
  Riverton 13502 Hamilton View Rd
  Riverton 1202 West 12600 South
  Salt Lake City 350 Hope Ave
  Salt Lake City 2705 E Parleys Way
  Salt Lake City 4627 S 900 E
  Sandy 9151 South Quarry Blvd
  Saratoga Springs 136 W State Road 73
  South Jordan 11328 S Jordan Gtwy
  South Jordan 3590 W. South Jordan Pkwy
  Spanish Fork 1206 N. Canyon Creek Parkway
  Springville 660 S 1750 W
  St George 2610 Pioneer Rd
  Taylorsville 5469 S Redwood Rd
  Tooele 99 W 1280 N
  Vernal 1851 W Highway 40
  Washington 625 W Telegraph St
  West Valley City 3180 S 5600 W
  West Valley City 5675 W 6200 S
  Aberdeen 909 E Wishkah St
  Arlington 4010 172nd St Ne
  Auburn 762 Outlet Collection Way
  Battle Ground 1201 Sw 13th Avenue
  Bellevue 15063 Main St
  Bellingham 4420 Meridian St
  Bonney Lake 19205 State Route 410 E
  Bremerton 6797 State Highway 303 Ne
  Chehalis 1601 Nw Louisiana Ave
  Chelan 108 Apple Blossom Dr
  Clarkston 306 5th St
  College Place 1700 Se Meadowbrook Blvd
  Colville 810 North Highway
  Covington 17432 Se 270th Pl
  Ephrata 1399 Nat Washington Way
  Everett 11400 Highway 99
  Federal Way 34520 16th Ave S
  Kennewick 2720 S Quillan St
  Lacey 1401 Galaxy Dr Ne
  Lakewood 7001 Bridgeport Way W
  Longview 540 7th Ave
  Longview 3715 Ocean Beach Hwy 2
  Lynnwood 1400 164th St Sw
  Lynnwood 17222 Highway 99
  Marysville 8924 Quilceda Blvd
  Marysville 8713 64th St Ne
  Monroe 19191 N Kelsey Street
  Moses Lake 1005 N Stratford Rd
  Mount Vernon 2301 Freeway Dr
  Oak Harbor 1250 Sw Erie St
  Omak 902 Engh Rd
  Othello 1860 E Main St
  Pasco 4820 N Road 68
  Port Angeles 3411 E Kolonels Way
  Port Orchard 3497 Bethel Rd Se
  Poulsbo 21200 Olhava Way Nw
  Puyallup 310 31st Ave Se
  Puyallup 16502 Meridian E
  Renton 743 Rainier Avenue South
  Richland 2801 Duportail St
  Sequim 1110 W Washington St
  Shelton 100 E Wallace Kneeland Blvd
  Spanaway 20307 Mountain Hwy E
  Spokane 9212 N Colton St
  Spokane 2301 W Wellesley Ave
  Spokane 1221 S Hayford Rd
  Spokane Valley 15727 E Broadway Ave
  Spokane Valley 5025 E Sprague Ave
  Sunnyside 2675 E Lincoln Ave
  Tacoma 1965 S. Union Ave
  Tumwater 5900 Littlerock Rd Sw
  Vancouver 221e Ne 104th Ave
  Vancouver 9000 Ne Highway 99
  Vancouver 430 Se 192nd Ave
  Wenatchee 2000 N Wenatchee Ave
  Woodland 1486 Dike Access Rd
  Yakima 1600 E Chestnut Ave
  Yakima 6600 W Nob Hill Blvd
  Yelm 17100 State Route 507 Se
  Casper 4255 Cy Ave
  Cody 321 Yellowstone Ave
  Evanston 125 N 2nd St


Note:  I do not receive cash or any considerations whatsoever for my mention of Augason Farms.  I simply use these products and can therefore speak on some of them.


Thursday, August 27, 2015

Not About Racism, Not About Guns, It's About Mental Illness

Anchor Parker, and Cameraman Ward, in happier times.    I have not published the photographs of the killer because I don't believe we should glorify what they have done to others who may be mentally ill.

        I have so little confidence in standard American news that I wasn't watching so I didn't hear about the on air Roanoke area shooting until Euronews brought it to me.  It was surreal to see such a thing announced by a European news outlet speaking of an area I recognized,  not all that far from where I live. Smith Mountain Lake is a lovely area.  Of course, the Euronews has an agendic spin......... Implied is "See what happens when mere humans are allowed to have guns?".   My answer would be, "why in the US, where police often can't get out to such a vast area, would you ever have a remote broadcast without having your own handgun ?"  I live in this area, and in all honesty, if I can't go somewhere with a concealed weapon, I won't go there.  A high end jeweler at Christmastime last year was upset when I rang the bell to enter, and when I saw the handguns prohibited sign returned to my car. She followed me out to the car thinking that I had waited too long to have the door opened. I told her that I have a concealed weapons permit and it would be unsafe for me to leave my weapon in the car, security system or not, so I won't ever be able to shop in her store. It is not safe for most women to be out in the world without a weapon, and without sufficient training to use it properly. We hear about mentally unstable people who use guns to murder people in an active shooter scenario. We don't hear about the ever growing number of abductions, rapes and murders that are prevented when the potential victim pulls a weapon and improves or equalizes their own chance of survival.

                      The assailant in the Roanoke shooting was named Vester Flanagan.  He had worked as a a television announcer a few years ago at the station in question, and used the on air name Bryce Williams.  From information he faxed to other news outlets in advance of the shooting, he felt that he had been fired a few years ago from his television job as a result of prejudice against gay men and against blacks.(His words, not my own)  Several sources claim the man "had anger issues".   Apparently, although the man in his early forties had worked in other jobs since, his firing was a festering wound which furthur deteriorated his mental state.  News reports say that  he bought a gun a couple of days after the Charleston church shooting, and his statements indicate that he feared attacks against blacks.  How ironic that a man who said he feared racial violence killed a twenty-four year old young news reporter and a twenty-seven year old cameraman who are reported to have been the very best of friends. He perpetrated the very type of insane violence and injustice he feared !  He also shot the woman they had been interviewing, in the back.

                    Mental illness isn't confined to people who have been fired from a job. It isn't confined to gays. It isn't confined to blacks. The internet age may enhance the mental deterioration of some of these mentally ill individuals as it may leave them less actual contact with other human beings.  Years ago, a withdrawn or persistently angry person would have had contact with a friend or relative who would have told them it was time to get help.  The internet may add an extra veil for these people, sometimes even validating the mentally unhealthy perspectives and disordered thinking they usually exhibit.

                 It's ironic that our first biracial president has done more to underscore racial differences than we could have imagined.  In many parts of Virginia, whites and blacks work together well. Biracial families are common, although the white spouses are often targets of nasty comments by black women who think the pool of black men should be left for them.  Mr. Obama has had even those who were adapted and thriving wondering if racism has impacted their lives.

                 The answer is not to furthur restrict guns allowing the very people who need to protect themselves to have fewer options.  Perhaps the answer in this case is to educate employers that when you fire someone, that a security contractor should speak with them in a terminal interview.  People who perpetrate violence either just after a firing or some time after are usually assessed at high risk for doing so IF they have come to the attention of s savvy security contractor. The field is called protective intelligence and threat assessment. People who are going to act out after a firing usually give pretty clear indications that they aren't operating normally.  The fact that when fired, Mr. Flanagan or Williams if he is on air, wouldn't leave the premises until the police were called to escort him.  This was a bloody red flag.

  One of the best companies for threat assessment work is:

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

When You Talk About Preparedness With Children

Photo:  ten year old boy  )

              I have long said that children should be incorporated into your routine preparations for everything from Winter weather to earthquakes etc.  When approached positively and included, even the most sensitive child will get the message that mom and dad love them so much that every reasonable effort is being made to keep them safe and that everything will be okay. Children should not only know something about preparedness, but they should know that their parents have contingency plans and that the unexpected would not leave them without food or alone without adult supervision and protection.

              A couple of weeks ago, a little girl known to us heard from some family friends some really frightening extreme theories as to what might happen when Mr. Obama is due to leave the White House.  The little girl is young, sensitive, and bright enough to have an imagination.  She is now traumatized by the words of people who are adults.......and in her mind, should know what is going to happen.

Emmeline   ( )

             With this in mind, think very carefully as to how you present your concerns to children.  Consider their age and their developmental level.  Consider whether you are dealing with a child with a particularly vivid imagination or a child who has anxiety already from another source. There are some children who should simply know that you are gathering canned goods "in case the weather is bad and you can't easily get out to get food".  For some children, too much detail concerning future possibilities is clearly damaging.   As adults, we all know that financial collapse, job loss, the loss of a home, a house fire, are all possibilities. However, we make reasonable contingency plans and then we set these worries aside, for the most part.   A child does not yet have the ability to assess reasonable possibilities and stack them in order of likelihood.  In order to reach their adult potential, children need to have a period of time during childhood in which they feel safe, and as if "nothing could happen".

              Years ago in the nineteen-sixties, when I was a young child, we learned in school that Halley's Comet would be making an appearance in the nineteen-eighties. I was very interested in science in those years.  A short while after, I watched a television program which postulated that Halley's was actually solid and that next time it came to Earth, it would collide with it, and most probably end life on this planet. As a tiny child I lacked the skepticism and perspective necessary to set this aside.  For an entire week, I was quiet and depressed, thinking of the world ending when I would be a young adult. I remember thinking that my parents knew this and were just carrying on with life as normal for their children's sake.  Finally, on a Sunday morning I mentioned this to my father, who somehow resisted laughing out loud.  He explained to me all the reasons that Halley's decimating Earth was extremely unlikely if not impossible. Remember that children, even bright children can get mistaken impressions about the world.  Make sure that you have an ongoing dialogue with your child or grandchildren so that their mistaken or frightening impressions have a chance to be debugged.    Hug them and help them to see that every last breath of your own will be spent in helping them stay happy and healthy, whatever the emergency or inconvenience.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Adventures in Upcycling: Can You Build A Greenhouse Box ?

        This is not my own creation, but I love it when someone takes materials they have on hand and creatively meshes them to repurpose and then upcycle something that not only looks great but adds new possibilities and an expanded role from the original.      The owner of these left over windows took a rolling cart, and placed windows on three sides and a top with a wooden back and base. The top is a window which is hinged and therefore opens.  These pictures show the greenhouse box as a decorative item housing flowers but most of us would love to have one of these to grow tomatoes, lettuce or to lengthen the growing season for anything we routinely grow, such as herbs.  I suppose you could also grow sprouts the way so many of us do on a kitchen window sill.

           This miniature greenhouse is surprisingly large inside and this opens up a number of possibilities.

It's small size coupled with the wheels on the undercarriage mean that this particular greenhouse can be moved taking advantage of the light, or being covered or moved away from it when the sun is too hot, as is so often the case where I am.

Make sure you hinge a lid which is strong and make opening easy.

      Now, we have something to do with the older windows which are so often replaced with metal framed or double paned glass.

 This is not only a handy and attractive object to make or have yourself, but would be a wonderful gift to a gardener who has cut back as he or she has aged.

            Next time you are visiting a garage sale, a Goodwill store, or a Habitat outlet and you see wooden framed  windows very cheaply, you'll know what to do !   Best wishes in all your upcycling adventures.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Perhaps the Double Explosion in China Is More Significant Than We Were Told


 One of the reasons I have developed a skeptical and occasionally cynical outlook where news media is concerned, is through personal experience.  Whenever I have really known about a situation of circumstance in real life, the news, whether local or American national, has covered it with either an inaccurate spin or in such a way that a false impression is given.   Sometimes, the news appears not to cover a gangland style murder perhaps because it might adversely impact real estate values in an upscale neighborhood.  Sometimes, the news will sensationalize an occurrence that was actually simply a medical problem. Many times, there is something very significant going on nationally or internationally, and we hear absolutely nothing about it on American mainstream news. Events which don't support a mainstream media agenda aren't reported on, or if they are, are never updated.

               On August 11, in Tianjin, China, two explosions occurred.  One of them, from video, looked an awful lot like a fiery mushroom cloud. The blasts were picked up by satellites orbiting Earth.  Tianjin is a port city which is home to more than thirteen million people. The explosion destroyed a building and left devastation for at least two miles from the initial explosion area.  At least a hundred and fifty people are dead following the initial blasts.  More than seven hundred are injured. Almost a hundred of them are in critical condition. The families of firefighters have reported them missing, yet the Chinese government does not yet know how many of them are dead or are injured.The government cannot yet offer an estimate of how many people from the area of the port are simply missing.  In addition, a number of large building have been destroyed.  Several thousand new cars which were delivered to the port have been destroyed. A large amount of imported goods and goods slated to be exported from the port have also been destroyed. The port has been closed in an attempt to prevent chemical spillage into the ocean.

                The official word is that the explosion took place in a company who transports a variety of dangerous chemicals.  The military has been called in to aid in the control of fires which have been burning now for two days.   Many of these workers are suited with gas masks.  They are also sampling the air and water in the region.  There are concerns that sodium cyanide gas from the explosion may drift from the region and injure or kill citizens in a broader area.

                Of course, my skeptical mind keeps going.  Were the Chinese really allowing tons of sodium cyanide and other chemicals to be stored in a center with seven million people in close proximity  ?   Was this a storage facility for the precursors of chemical weapons ?   China has recently had some issues with homegrown terrorists. Terrorists from other nations also have some issues with China, especially as they gather rare Earth metals in a number of African nations. Was this a terrorist attack ?  Would anyone really admit any of this, once they identified the cause ?  Is this a practice run for a terrorist attack elsewhere ?  Can we really believe very much of anything told to us via our largest news outlets ?

I am not the only one who thinks this doesn't add up:

Additional information:

                 Just outside the blast zone.   Photo:  Wu Hong /EPA as seen in the UK Guardian