Dynamic DNA!

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The Doctors say that as a rule of thumb, the darker the alcohol or liquor, the worse the hangover. Additional sugars in alcohol also wreak havoc on the body, so Dr. Travis suggests drinking alcohol in moderation and alternating glasses of water between adult beverages. “There’s really no cure for a hangover except time. Drink water and get some food in your system.” Learn more about how to avoid or minimize holiday hangovers.

The Lady in Red
Does wearing the color red boost your sex appeal? A new study shows that men have a tendency to find women who wear red more attractive than in any other color. Dr. Travis notes that the color red incites passion and excitement.

Dr. Lisa adds, “I think women feel more confident in red and colors. I think if they wear red, the confidence shows through and a man sees that.”

Foreign Accent Syndrome
CindyLou suffers from a rare medical condition called Foreign Accent Syndrome, which makes her sound as if she’s speaking with a mix of Swedish, Irish, German and Russian accents. She says it comes and goes, and she never knows which accent will surface. Sometimes all of them jumble together to form a sort of gibberish. “I can speak that one really fluently when that happens!” she jokes.

Dr. Jim opines that CindyLou’s condition could be a case of aphasia, a speech disorder caused by a stroke or brain injury. “Maybe even damage to her basal ganglia, a group of nerve cells located in the brain that controls movement,” he says. “Maybe you start to move the syllables around a bit and you start to mispronounce some words.”

CindyLou explains that she was in a serious accident in 1981 and experienced severe head trauma. Though she recovered from the brain damage, she reports that one day last year she just started to inexplicably speak this way, and her condition continues to confound the medical community.

Predicting Your (Genetic) Future
If you could peer into your future, would you? Mankind has tried to predict the future for centuries, but it looks like science has finally cracked the code. The answer is locked in your DNA, and one swab of your mouth can actually reveal your medical future.

Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is a double-stranded molecule held together by hydrogen bonds to form long strands that spiral around one another in a twisted “ladder” formation; an effect called a double helix. The particular sequence of the “rungs” of the ladder, or nucleotides, determines an individual’s characteristics and genetic fingerprint. DNA carries a unique genetic blueprint for each human being and ribonucleic acid (RNA) “translates” it.

Genetic Testing
Navigenics, a company that performs genetic testing, uses the findings of the human genome project* to approximate an individual’s genetic predispositions to diseases and conditions. The founders of the company posit that knowledge is power, and learning that a person is at risk for a particular illness allows for prevention and treatment. 

*A 13-year study to identify and map human genes and determine possible sequences.

Elissa, a genetic testing counselor at Navigenics, says it’s the company’s hope that their tests will empower people to take control of their medical future. She explains that Navigenics creates in-depth reports that patients can take to their physician and integrate them into their health care program to live a healthier life.

“We’re finally able to come to a point where our technology is there, our scientific research is there, and it’s all coming together so that we can start to put a picture together for people and give them some insight as to what they might expect,” she says. 

Twenty-three-year-old Sarah was adopted from Seoul, Korea, when she was a little girl. She does not know anything about her biological ancestry, and is eager to fill in the blanks. “I feel like a part of me is missing. If I were to know about my family history I feel like I would be getting back part of my life,” she confides.

Sarah submitted a saliva sample to Navigenics, and Dr. Travis reveals that Sarah’s risk for Alzheimer’s is 29 percent, whereas the national average for women is 17 percent. Her risk of 
colon cancer is 7 percent, compared to the national average of 5 percent (for women). Sarah can take the information to her doctor to develop a preventative strategy.  

Jerry, 53, says that his family has a history of heart disease and cancer. He lost his sister and father to heart disease when they were in their 50s. He admits that he’s concerned for his health as he approaches 55, the age at which his father died.  

The Navigenics results reveal that Jerry’s risk for diabetes is 39 percent, whereas the national average risk is 29 percent. His risk of heart disease (37 percent) is actually lower than the national average, which is 42 percent.

“This is great knowledge,” Jerry states.

DNA Dating
The latest trend in dating isn’t the Internet -- it’s DNA! Couples are now being matched based on their genetic compatibility. Is this the missing link to finding your true love? Eric Holzle, founder of the DNA dating company Scientific Match, explains that his company compares six genetic markers in human DNA to define compatibility between potential mates.

Eric explains that Scientific Match is based on the theory that human beings are attracted to and more compatible with individuals that have different immune systems than their own. “The reason being is that when you have two parents have very different immune system genes, they create healthier children,” he says, “which is what Nature’s goal is.”

He adds that couples who are perfectly matched in this manner report a healthier and more satisfying sex life.

Meet the Contestants!
Three couples submitted samples of their DNA to determine whether they were a genetic match, according to the Scientific Match formula.

Couple No. 1
Abby, 29, and Josh, 30, have been married for five years and have three beautiful children (actually two are beautiful and one is a hot mess. Just kidding – it’s just a funny descriptor to me – this whole “three beautiful children” or “lovely wife” – like you would say otherwise? Anyhoo…) They met, fell in love and were married a short time later. “We just knew!” they chime in unison, easily finishing each other’s sentences. 

“We definitely have chemistry together,” Abby affirms, “the kind of chemistry that lasts a lifetime.”

“We have three kids, so I think we’re pretty compatible!” Josh adds.

And… the cards confirm it!

Couple No. 2
Cory, 30, and Edie, 32, have been dating for eight years and are not sure whether they’re ready to take their relationship to the next level. “I love my honey no matter what any test says, and I believe whatever is meant to be, will be,” Edie says.

No matter, the cards confirm the match!

Couple No. 3
Melissa, 24, and Kevin, 30, have been dating for more than a year and are considering marriage.
“I’m really interested in having the DNA test because both of us come from families that have gone through divorces,” Melissa says.

The cards did not confirm the couple’s match, however, Eric Holzle reassures the couple that five out of the six genetic reference points were in sync. Though disappointed by the results, Melissa affirms, “We’ll make it though!”

Dr. Travis reveals that Cory is compatible with all three of the women onstage! “You’re the man!” he cheers.

Toy Dangers
In 2007, more than 25 million toys were recalled and more than 150,000 children were seriously injured as the result of tainted toys.

Safety Mom
Founder of safetymom.com, Alison Rhodes, says that choking on small objects is the leading cause of accidents and deaths related to children’s toys. “Rule of thumb: if it fits through a toilet paper roll, it’s dangerous. Keep it away.”   

She suggests that parents sign up with the Consumer Products Safety Commission to receive timely e-mail alerts for toy recalls and other important safety information. “You’ve got to keep up on these things,” she implores, “it’s important.”

Alison adds that parents should be vigilant that they, and whoever is taking care of their children, are certified in First Aid and CPR. “Because seconds make a difference, and you’ve got to make sure that you’re ready for any accident,” she underscores. 

Top Five Toy Hazards
Small objects: risk of choking
Latex balloons: risk of suffocation
Riding toys (scooters, bikes, etc.): A helmet will reduce the risk of head injury as much as 88 percent.
Magnets: swallowing can cause significant harm and even death
  Chargers and adapters: can leak and cause thermal burns

No.1 Choking Hazard
Doll hair!

Deadly Food Allergies
More than three million children in the United States suffer from severe food allergies. Country music star Trace Adkins makes a guest appearance to raise awareness about the dangers of childhood allergies. He shares his
terrifying ordeal of when his 6-year-old daughter, Briana, went into anaphylactic shock after unwittingly eating peanut butter. “It’s frightening how fast it happens,” he says, “it’s not minutes, it’s seconds.”

Trace’s wife, Rhonda, frets, “There isn’t a moment that I’m not thinking, ‘Is she safe?’”

Dr. Jim lists dairy, egg, almonds, peanuts and walnuts as the most common allergen offenders. To help prevent the on-set of allergies, the pediatrician advises:

No egg whites until 12 months

No milk until 12 months

No peanut butter or peanut products until age two or three


Anaphylactic Shock

Anaphylactic shock can claim a life in less than five minutes. It is a severe type of allergic reaction that occurs within seconds after a person comes into contact with an allergen, triggering a massive immune system response. High levels of histamines and other substances flood the body and cause a rapid systemic failure, which leads to an immediate drop in blood pressure, swelling of the tongue, throat and eyes, difficulty breathing, shock, and if left untreated, death. Allergens include all types of food, animal hair and by-products, insects or even certain types of medications.



Trace demonstrates how to use an Epi-Pen, which contains a large dosage of epinephrine, or adrenaline, that counters the effects of the histamine reaction. However, he notes that the Epi-Pen is not a solution; it just buys you time to get to the emergency room. The important thing to remember is that every minute counts, so make sure to act quickly and get the victim to a hospital immediately. 


Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN)

Trace adds that the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) helped his family learn more about food allergies and ways to keep his daughter safe. So much so that he’s now a spokesperson for the organization. “Being a spokesperson for FAAN has changed my life,” he declares. “I’m trying to get the word out – I’m on a mission.”

Click here to watch a message from Trace Adkins and The Doctors, and share with everyone you know!

Healthy Holiday Recipes

Download healthy holiday recipes courtesy of CEO Chef, Inc.!


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OAD 12/15/08