Dr. Magryta: What did we learn in 2019?
This is the year end edition of our newsletter, marking nine years of writing and somewhere around 934 articles.
This was an interesting year, as many cutting edge scientific advances are gaining prominence. We are getting significantly smarter about the causes of disease. The comical part is that the answers have been around for a thousand years!
1) Inflammation continues to be the major identifiable root problem in diseases of aging and neuro-degeneration. Diet and mental stress are the primary drivers of all inflammatory issues. Mitigating risk REQUIRES lifestyle choices that are focused on movement, whole food Mediterranean diets, stress reduction and chemical avoidance.
2) Mental stress and the lack of quality psychiatric care is driving a disproportionate amount of disease morbidity in Americans. Medicine is woefully inadequately prepared to handle the changes that are present and coming. On top of this fact, we are less grounded as a society and it is showing in the cracks of behavior.
3) The modern media continues to glorify the ills of society. There is a persistent, heavy focus on negative events; the news cycle is depressing; the media industrial complex glorifies all of the wrong ideals for our kids to emulate. We need more focus on the positives in humans, and less polarizing content showing the worst parts of human behavior. Maybe then we can start to reduce baseline stress.
4) Meditation and prayer are highly beneficial and highly recommended to help reduce stress, immune and hormone dysregulation and inflammation. The data is SOLID. Just do it.
5) Sleep is more important than ever as we learn more about the mechanisms for cleaning the brain at night, reducing Alzheimer’s risk, pruning unneeded neurons and memories, maintaining a high energy level and growth. Make sure that your kids are getting adequate sleep nightly. It is a big deal.
6) The intestinal microbiome continues to be a hotbed of research, but we are still far away from a simple answer. We DO know a high fiber diet devoid of highly processed foods will significantly help grow and maintain the right bacterial flora.
7) Research on the use of pharmaceuticals continues to shed light on the risks related to chronic use of any medicine, especially the disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs for autoimmune disease. Timing of use is a factor in drug risk for all mammals.
8) Wearable tech is gaining ground. As time progresses, leverage wearable tech to help you make changes to your choices that benefit your physiology.
9) Time-restricted feeding and fasting are very useful for repair and longevity in the human body. Listen to the data available from Dr. Rhonda Patrick or Peter Attia.
10) Podcast media is a fantastic way to consume high quality data while in a car, for instance. Especially if you are an auditory learner.
11) Vaping and opioids have become a major risk for death, driving the U.S. life expectancy downward for the first time in generations. We need to do a better job of finding alternative ways to deal with our pain, non-pharmacologically. This will help reduce the chance that an opioid medicine will end up in the wrong hands, starting an addiction issue. The number of children being born to opioid-addicted mothers is staggering, and heartbreaking.
12) Screen time for adults and children alike is out of control. Pay attention and be conscious of time wasted. Make a pact to be more present in the moment with your kids and self.
As a parent, for the 2020 year, I would recommend that you not negotiate with your children on these things:
4) Chemical avoidance
5) Screen time
That is a recipe for health.
Dr. Chris Magryta is a physician at Salisbury Pediatric Associates. Contact him at email@example.com