Shocking Health Trends

From a gold facial to a workout that’s not just for kids anymore, The Doctors bring you the top 10 most shocking health trends of the year!

No. 10: The IV Drip Diet

A new diet trend gaining popularity among models and celebrities is the IV drip diet, where an IV drip is attached to the dieter so they receive the appropriate nutrients without having to eat. The drip contains multi-vitamins, including thiamine, folic acid, magnesium sulfate and saline. “The IV that they are giving to people is the exact same thing I give to chronic alcoholics who come into the E.R.,” Dr. Travis says.

“The minute you get off this starvation protocol of IV fluid, whatever weight you lost is just going to come right back on,” he continues. “And it’s a dangerous way to do it.”

“It’s controlled starvation,” Dr. Ordon adds.

No. 9: Raw Meat Diet
You may have heard of the raw food diet, but the raw meat diet? While The Doctors do not endorse it, Aajonus, 61, claims eating raw meat, poultry and eggs saved his life. The diet consists of uncooked and unprocessed raw food and advocates claim that the benefits include improved digestion, better weight management and nutritional value, and reduced risk of disease. Proponents of the diet contend that raw foods contain enzymes which are said to act as catalysts to regulate the digestive process in the body and that cooking the food degrades those enzymes.

Aajonus says that cancer brought him to the verge of death when he was 20. He also struggled with juvenile diabetes and angina pectoris when he was a teenager and says he had 300 heart attacks by the time he was 22. His cancer resurfaced 10 years later and Aajonus says he felt fighting it again would be difficult. He was told that eating any uncooked food would kill him, so he began doing just that. “I ate the raw meat to kill myself,” he says. “And it did just the opposite. It invigorated me for the first time in my life. I didn’t have to worry about my obsession with eating.”

Aajonus buys his raw meats from specialty stores, and eats that plus one fruit a day. He also drinks vegetable juice.

“All the respect to you and what you’re doing,” Dr. Travis says. “But I do not recommend this to anyone at home. A raw meat diet runs the risk of so many bad things, like salmonella, among others.

“I’m not saying this diet for you isn’t a wonderful thing,” Dr. Travis continues. “But this is a dangerous diet for your average person. In the E.R. I have taken care of people who have almost died from eating raw chicken.”

Dr. Lisa warns that eating raw meats during pregnancy can cause birth defects.

No. 8: The Wing Suit

Are you
an adrenaline junkie? Then forget skydiving with those big parachutes, because the wing suit may just be for you!

The win
g suit is a full body suit with fabric that stretches under the arms from the wrists to the waist and between the legs. You need to be 1,800 feet or higher before jumping with one, and for every 1 foot of vertical drop, you travel 3 feet forward. When you fall to about 200 feet above the ground, a parachute is released to assist with the landing.

“Basically, it turns you into a flying squirrel,” Dr. Jim says after putting on the suit.

To use the suit, you need to be a certified skydiver with at least 200 jumps completed.

“One of the great things about sports like this is if you know what you’re doing, it can be relatively safe,” Dr. Travis says.

No. 7: Pogo Stick Boot Camp 
Pogo sticks are not just for kids anymore. They actually make a great workout.

The Flybar SP2 pogo stick replaces the traditional spring with rubber spring elements and has an elevation potential of over 4 feet! “This is not like the pogo stick I remember as a kid,” Dr. Ordon says before jumping on for a workout.

“It’s full-functional fitness,” says Nick Morris, the owner of Pineapple Fitness who teaches pogo workouts. “It’s your legs driving it hard. You’re actually stabilizing everything in your midsection, and you’re driving hard with your upper body, as well.”

The Doctors take a hop on the pogo sticks and jump around the stage. “I have to say, if I could do it more than once or twice, it looks like it’d be fun,” Dr. Travis says.

No. 6: Mommy and Me Happy Hour

It’s Sex and the City meets
Sesame Street. Mommy and me happy hour is a time for mothers to socialize with one another while still spending time with their children. The mothers sip some wine or a cocktail while the kids drink juice and they all mingle, play together, make lunches and talk about the news. Participants do say that they usually have just one alcoholic drink during the happy hour.

“I think this is a good thing,” Dr. Jim says. “This is kind of how I grew up. The adults drank, and there wasn’t this mystified thing that was hidden away from the kids. You’re just kind of teaching them that drinking isn’t this crazy thing. It’s just this normal part of life that you don’t go beyond the edge.”

“I think that as long as it’s safe and there’s someone responsible for the kids who is not under the influence, it’s a good thing,” Dr. Lisa says.

No. 5: Day Spas for Kids

Spas have been around for decades, but a new kind of spa caters to a much smaller clientele: kids. The number of teens and children visiting spas has increased over the years, with nearly four million spa-goers under the age of 19 in 2006.

Kid spas offer many of the same amenities as the adult versions, but with a twist. At one spa, for example, cupcakes are served, and kids have the option of a chocolate kiss facial or a strawberry smoothie one. The spa experience also allows parents to give their kids something they enjoy, as well.

“Anything that helps you bond, I think that’s a great experience,” Dr. Lisa says. “It gets you closer; it’s a chance for you to talk and communicate. And also, it’s a chance to celebrate being a woman and being happy about it. Heck, if I could walk around in a little crown all day, I would!"

No. 4: 24-Karat Gold Facial

Gold is good for the pocket, but can it also be good for the face? The 24-karat gold facial originated in
Japan and is now being used in spas around the United States. The treatment uses Gamma PGA and Nano Mist technology combined with 24-karat gold to help with pigmentation, firming skin and reducing wrinkles.

Gold is
sometimes used to help treat arthritis, and Dr. Ordon says the small beads of gold enter the dermis and stimulate the formation of collagen in the face. “I’ll try it,” Dr. Ordon says. “Am I buying the gold? Yeah! Cleopatra did it.”

No. 3: Swimming Machine
You don’t have to get drenched to go swimming anymore. The Vasa Ergometer is a machine that allows you to swim in mid-air. It measures your stroke power accurately, improves stroke technique and gives you a good workout. Because the variable airflow wind resistance system makes you feel like you are swimming in
water, nearly every
U.S. Olympic swimmer trains with the Vasa Ergometer. A bar can be attached to the machine to make it a simulated kayaking experience, as well.

“This is actually a very natural resistance,” Dr. Jim says while rowing on the machine. “It really feels just like I’m on a real kayak in the water. And the harder you stroke, the more resistance it is.”

No. 2: Orgasmic Birth

Would you swap pain during childbirth for an orgasm? More and more women are claiming they have orgasmic births, especially during home births. “I know it’s possible for women to have orgasms when they breastfeed, because nipple stimulation is nipple stimulation,” Dr. Lisa says. “But during delivery, I’ve actually never had a patient have that. I could see it happening, because a lot of times we’ll do nipple stimulation to bring on contractions. I suppose early in labor it could happen. Really, everywhere I’ve delivered, from Africa to
India to here, most women are in pain if they don’t have anesthesia. ”

Laura has been collecting information about orgasmic births for 15 years and says she has had orgasms right before giving birth from having sex prior to her water breaking. “I just thought it was a fascinating phenomenon,” she says.

“The message that I try to bring is much larger than that,” she adds. “It’s about overcoming fear, shame and guilt. Emotions affect blood flow, and you want blood to flow to that area.”

“It’s just another tool to relax,” Dr. Jim says. “Having a good birth experience is all about relaxing in all the areas, and if that helps you do it, then why not?”

No. 1: Ultimate Orgasm
Do you wish you could have a better orgasm? Help may be a click of a button away. A device called the Orgasmatron is placed inside the body and is purported to help give orgasms to those who may be challenged in that area. It costs about $23,000, not including the surgery to put the device in, Dr. Ordon says.

Created by Dr. Stuart Meloy, the Orgasmatron is a spinal-cord stimulator inserted in the lower back and is about the size of a pacemaker. A hand-held remote controls the device, which stimulates electrodes placed on the spine. It was able to restore orgasmic function in 80 percent of women who were unable to climax for at least one year, according a recent study. These women had experienced at least one orgasm in their lifetime prior to the study. The Orgasmatron is also known as Neurally Augmented Sexual Function.

“Some women really have difficulty [achieving orgasm] and it affects their sexuality,” Dr. Lisa says. “And sexuality is a very important part for a woman because it goes towards her confidence and how she feels about herself. And if she hasn’t had this experience, there’s an option.”

Before spending the money for an Orgasmatron, however, The Doctors advise trying other, less-expensive options first.



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OAD 1/26/09