PTSD Awareness Day

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Starting in 2010, Congress named June 27th PTSD Awareness Day (S. Res. 455).  In 2014, the Senate designated the full month of June for National PTSD Awareness (S. Res. 481).  The purpose of PTSD Awareness Month is to encourage everyone to raise public awareness of PTSD and effective treatments. We can all help those affected by PTSD.1

So yesterday was PTSD awareness day.  I am an advocate for veterans of any kind, and my wife Chandra and I have worked tirelessly with our military veterans.  Regarding PTSD, along with many fund raising groups, non profits, or some that discuss PTSD, the word ‘public awareness’ seems to be a buzz word for raising money.  That’s great, so what’s next?

PTSD treatments and rates of success

The Mayo clinic states Post-traumatic stress disorder treatment can help you regain a sense of control over your life.  The primary treatment is psychotherapy, but can also include medication.  Here are Mayo clinic solutions for PTSD:

Psychotherapy

Several types of psychotherapy, also called talk therapy, may be used to treat children and adults with PTSD.  Some types of psychotherapy used in PTSD treatment include:

  • Cognitive therapy.  This type of talk therapy helps you recognize the ways of thinking (cognitive patterns) that are keeping you stuck.
  • Exposure therapy.  This behavioral therapy helps you safely face both situations and memories that you find frightening so that you can learn to cope with them effectively.
  • Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR). EMDR combines exposure therapy with a series of guided eye movements that help you process traumatic memories and change how you react to them.

Medications

  • Antidepressants.  These medications can help symptoms of depression and anxiety. They can also help improve sleep problems and concentration.  The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) medications sertraline (Zoloft) and paroxetine (Paxil) are approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for PTSD treatment.
  • Anti-anxiety medications.  These drugs can relieve severe anxiety and related problems.  Some anti-anxiety medications have the potential for abuse, so they are generally used only for a short time.
  • Prazosin.  If symptoms include insomnia with recurrent nightmares, a drug called prazosin (Minipress) may help. Although not specifically FDA approved for PTSD treatment, prazosin may reduce or suppress nightmares in many people with PTSD.2

The Link between PTSD and Substance Abuse/Addiction

People who suffer from PTSD are between two and four times more likely to also battle addiction than their peers who do not also struggle with PTSD, the journal Clinical Psychology publishes.

Correlation between Stress, Drug Use, and Addiction

Substance abuse, addiction, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have a complex relationship that can complicate treatment modalities.  High levels of stress can make it more likely for a person to turn to drugs or alcohol as a means of escape.  Drugs can increase pleasure, decrease anxiety, and provide a distraction from difficult emotions.

When someone feels stressed, levels of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) are lowered, and adrenaline is increased.  GABA is a kind of natural tranquilizer produced by the brain that can also be stimulated by drugs that suppress the central nervous system, like opioids, marijuana, alcohol, and benzodiazepines. Drugs also increase the presence of dopamine in the brain, one of the brain’s chemical messengers that tells a person to feel happy.  When the substances wear off, low moods are common as dopamine levels drop.3

How common is co-occurring PTSD and SUD in Veterans?

Studies show that there is a strong relationship between PTSD and SUD, in both civilian and military populations, as well as for both men and women.

Specific to Veterans from 2016:

  • More than 2 of 10 Veterans with PTSD also have SUD.
  • War Veterans with PTSD and alcohol problems tend to be binge drinkers. Binges may be in response to bad memories of combat trauma.
  • Almost 1 out of every 3 Veterans seeking treatment for SUD also has PTSD.
  • The number of Veterans who smoke (nicotine) is almost double for those with PTSD (about 6 of 10) versus those without a PTSD diagnosis (3 of 10).
  • In the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, about 1 in 10 returning soldiers seen in VA have a problem with alcohol or other drugs.4

VA suicide rates

According to the VA, an average of 20 veterans died from suicide every day in 2014.

The VA examined over 55 million veteran records from 1979 to 2014 from every state in the nation.  The last time the VA conducted a study like this was in 2010, but that report included data from only 20 states.

In 2014, 7,403 American veterans committed suicide, out of 41,425 suicides among U.S. adults that year. That’s just under 18 percent, down from 22 percent in 2010.

Today’s report also included comparisons between civilians and veterans.  From 2001 to 2014, the VA found, suicides among U.S. adult civilians increased 23 percent while veteran suicides increased 32 percent — making the risk of suicide 21 percent greater for veterans than civilians (after controlling for age and gender).

Older veterans face a higher risk of suicide, the data showed.  In 2014 about 65 percent of veterans who died from suicide were 50 years or older.5

Something to consider

So we have an alarming rate of suicides with veterans and I believe Army is highest.  Looking at the top solutions for our Veterans, what do we have from above?

Psychotherapy

In 2015 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, reveals that go-to treatments for the disorder may not be as effective as many in the medical community may have believed or hoped. The research showed that while up to 70% of the men and women who received CPT or PE experienced symptom improvements, around two-thirds of people receiving the treatments still met the criteria for a PTSD diagnosis after treatment. 6

Medications

Here is a good one.  Let’s look at the success of medications with veterans and PTSD.

18 U.S. veterans commit suicide daily; largely due to psychiatric drugs.7

Treatment for PTSD may be killing veterans.8

There needs to be more action taken for veterans.  For veterans themselves, our research foundation the Vandry Hope Foundation works on research and time on Chronic pain, TBI, Legal blindness and PTSD.  We have been through veterans and civilians to aid, help and make a difference.  I will also note, the above quotes on alcoholism and drugs must be taken into consideration.  For PTSD, it starts with your therapy, but ultimately, if you have a toxic lifestyle it makes it worse.  Start with putting yourself back together.  My wife and I have spent so many hundreds of hours with those with PTSD, or civilians with Chronic pain, anxiety and so many other conditions.  There are times we spend hours supporting those that seek us, and many times in the end, they themselves do nothing or go to other

In closing, I myself have worked with veterans, and many of you know of our Miracle oil product that relieves pain, and has worked excellent in results with veterans.  You can go to our youtube mini documentary on 7 veterans we worked on.  You can view it yourself:

References:

1.  https://www.ptsd.va.gov/about/ptsd-awareness/ptsd_awareness_month.asp

2.http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/post-traumatic-stress-disorder/diagnosis-treatment/treatment/ptc-20308558

3. http://americanaddictioncenters.org/ptsd/

4. https://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/problems/ptsd_substance_abuse_veterans.asp

5. http://abcnews.go.com/US/va-releases-results-largest-analysis-veteran-suicide-rates/story?id=40401007

6.http://time.com/3982440/ptsd-veterans/

7.https://www.cchrint.org/2011/06/04/18-u-s-veterans-commit-suicide-daily-largely-due-to-psychiatric-drugs/

8.http://warincontext.org/2010/08/31/treatment-for-ptsd-may-be-killing-veterans/

William Vandry and boxing legend Leon Spinks for veterans

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Miracle oil serves community at Austin Diagnostic Clinic Health Fair

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William Vandry with new friend and consumer

Vandry hope foundation attended the Austin Diagnostic clinic fair at the North Medical Center.  We brought the Miracle oil product, and our Vandry BJJ academy.  We were able to sample the Miracle oil product with these consumers:

Consumer 1, Elaine

11:34AM, Elaine has arthritis in her knees, and can only squat about an inch.  We applied the oil, and at 11:39AM, Elaine was smiling, feeling better and able to do a full rock bottom squat.  I then asked her to stand up on one leg, one at a time.  I then had her doing jumping jacks, and playing boxing drills to show her mobility and relief of pain.  Elena said she tried cortisone shots, and tried everything before.

Consumer 2, Barbara

12:04PM, Barbara has bad arthritis in both knees, and she cannot grip very well.  I have her test a coconut water bottle, which she cannot squeeze.  She has pain.  Two minutes later, Elaine had pain relief, and squeezes the coconut water bottle, then grabs her friends hand, then grabs the table no pain.

Consumer 3, Ginger

12:50 Ginger stated she has arthritis.  We applied to hand, and she felt relief within a minute, and states her arthritis “Is gone!”

Consumer 4,

12:32PM, she has chronic arthritis, and her arthritis is in the knee due to knee surgery on both knees.  We apply the oil and 12:37PM she walks without her cane.

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You can go to our Vandry Hope website at www.vandryhope.org, and for more information on St. Jude’s Miracle oilTM product, go to www.stjudesmiracleoil.com.  In addition, you can also go to our facebook pages

https://www.facebook.com/Vandry-Brazilian-Jiu-Jitsu-120961547918783/

https://www.facebook.com/vandryhope/

And to view video of our consumers, you can go to Miracle oil at facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/132501736829734/

City of Austin Housing Authority thank you letter

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Thank you to Jeanette from the Housing Authority City of Austin for their kind letter to Chandra and myself, and our awesome group that helps us form these projects!  We will do more in the future Jeanette!

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William and Chandra Vandry with APD and our sponsors thank you for giving to those less fortunate

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“In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’

– Acts 20:35

My wife Chandra and I humbly thank all of our sponsors, volunteers, caregivers for those less fortunate, and to provide not simply gifts for Christmas, but to make a difference in people’s lives that can change them in a positive direction. First, the event could not have been successful without our organizers of all our philanthropic missions, so a big thank you from Chandra and I to:

Sgt. Drabek (APD)
Officer Rodriguez (APD)
Corporal Davis (NMMP)
Jen Smalley

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First, I will champion a cause about some great law enforcement officials.  For example, Sgt. Drabek and Officer Rodriguez along with others in our group have worked tirelessly in helping to formulate and sponsor some of our projects with a true, altruistic personality that we hear very little credit for.  Both of these APD officers along with some of my DPS, Travis County officers have volunteered for years working with projects Chandra and I sponsor such as working with the blind, blind military soldiers, the impoverished, the poor, the needy because it’s the right thing to do.  They don’t get medals for those, but they get the Vandry thank you.

In addition, we thank the following sponsors below. We give thanks to Old Settler’s Dental office for providing toothbrushes and floss for children that don’t have any. Thank you to the very kind Dr. Zavala, who was gracious enough to provide those during a rushed last minute.

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Chandra, Austin from Kerbey land and me

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My awesome wife about to load up 60 Kerbey burgers

We thank Kerbey lane restaurant for their generosity. Chandra and I needed to feed about 42 children. I know from past charity projects, when you say 40, that means 60.

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Don’t worry, snacks until you get seconds!

I went to order all natural hamburgers and french fries to go from a company. They then told me they could only send me gift certificates due to the large order.  My wife and I frequent Kerbey Lane restaurant off 183.  I was praying that maybe they could cook a bunch of hamburgers and fries asap.  I called, and spoke to Austin, who is the managing partner.  I know he and Leo, and they are really nice guys.  I asked Austin if there was any way he could create 60 hamburgers and fries to go.  I told them I would pay for it, whatever he wanted.  Austin knows of some of Chandra and my philanthropy projects in the past.  In September he was very supportive of our Got Pain? clinics on nutrition for pain, inflammation, degeneration, etc. we lecture on for free.  Austin asked me what was it for? I told him Chandra and I year around have projects we sponsor for the legally blind, homeless, impoverished children among others.  I told him it was a project we were providing food packs, gloves, socks, toys and other needed items for the kids.  Austin told me he and his partners also have kids.  He expressed how much he supported Chandra and my projects.  He put me on hold and then got back on and told me:

“William, come back at 4:30pm, I will have your 60 food packs ready to go.  Don’t worry about it, we know how tough children have it, and we are going to sponsor this for you.”

Wow. Sure enough, Chandra and I came, picked up the food to go, and Austin, Leo and Kerbey lane, thank you!  Austin texted me to check to make sure it was enough and emailed me stressing his support for community in this email:

“…Mr. and Mrs. Vandry,

We are very excited to be helping the kids of the Vandry Hope. The entire Kerbey Lane family believes in supporting our community wherever we can. This includes working with United Way and Capital Area Food Bank, just to name a few. We may be simply providing hamburgers, but it means the world to us to help those in need. I’m sure anyone would agree with me in saying providing a meal to homeless children is one of the greatest needs of all. In addition to this, we already know you and your family are valued guests of our particular location. We view this as not only helping the kids, but helping out a friend and member of the extended Kerbey Lane family. We thank you for thinking of us in your time of need…”

Thank you Kerbey lane!

I asked the kids to give a thanks to our food sponsor.  Sorry they misspelled it, but we get the message!

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Whew.  That was a close one. Our thanks to Austin and Kerbey Lane for not worrying about profit, or even any publicity.  He just told me it was something they believe in.  Now luckily Chandra and I also purchased many more packs of natural peanuts, pretzels to accommodate seconds, extra hungry little ones who deserve to be provided food, and as well as many parents who were there.  All in all we got over 80 kids there, and we managed to provide food, food packs to go.  Each pack we provided for all kids had:

gloves
blanket
socks
soap
toothbrush, toothpaste and floss
toys for Christmas
crayons and book
reading book
2 organic juice drinks
non gmo pretzels
low glycemic chocolate bars
non gmo dried fruit snacks

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Smaller children all had crayons and coloring books, toys for Christmas, and teens received hats, reading books and teen card games like Go fish, etc.

Whenever we work on Christmas projects, my wife Chandra reads the kids the Christmas story ‘The night before Christmas’. You can tell these kids don’t get enough of this.

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Here Chandra along with our friends feed the little ones, and add ketchup upon request!

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These kids below wanted to talk about their education!  One of them has a deaf mother, and he knows sign language to communicate.  These kids deserve a chance.

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Below, APD’s finest Sgt. Drabek, who has done so much voluntary work with the less fortunate with Chandra and I, and also teaches with us at the Texas School of the Blind camp we do each year.

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I personally don’t think good work with the less fortunate is getting a gift and giving it to him.  Most impoverished children have so little, not even enough food in their housing, so gifts can be great, but I have spoke to other groups that like to get together and ask for people to donate a gift, wrap it and give it to them so they can give it out to kids.  To me, that may be very common, but its a bit impersonal.  I got to speak to children about goals, about education, and achieving them.  Also nutrition and hopefully future projects we will be able to do.  I also spoke to parents about nutrition, health, and their own goal setting.  I had two Moms that told me they would like to get an education.  Now we’re talking!

Special thanks to Jeannette Guerrero Benavides, Carolyn Velasquez and Corrina Flores for their work there, and to Jeanette, who I remember the first time I spoke with her on the phone, she was so teary eyed, and wanting to help all these children.  We will do more work together in the future.

My friends, students and colleagues all know me, and how I am.  I do believe in philanthropy, and as a Martial artist, our Jiu-jitsu comes from the Japanese, and there was a code of the Samurai or Bushido code.  This code was an honor system required of Samurai.  The third code is one I have practiced my entire life.  Very rarely do you get thanks in life, but that’s not why we do it.  We do it because we want to make a difference.  In Beyond “benevolence” this character can be also be defined as “charity” or “mercy”.  The deeper meaning suggests that one should pay alms to the poor, care for those in trouble, and take care of his fellow man (or woman).  This benevolent-related word translated as perfect virtue, selflessness, love for humanity, humaneness, goodness, good will, or simply “love” in the non-romantic form.

Professor William Vandry

P.S. And special thanks to all our sponsors and volunteers below!

Corporate Sponsors

Old Settler’s Dental, Cosmetic, Implant and Family Dentistry
Kerbey lane restaurant
Austin Police Department
Shaw Surgical services inc.
Entech
Lake Travis Jiu-jitsu Club
Armas Jiu-jitsu
Vandry Brazilian Jiu-jitsu
St. Jude’s Miracle oilTM
The Noble sandwich
Advanced Chiropractic Center
Ranch Road Consulting inc.
Henna Chevrolet
Parallax
Waugh Jiu-jitsu Academy

Individual supporters and Sponsors

Sgt. Drabek (APD)
Corporal Black (APD)
Officer Rodriguez (APD)
Officer Portnoy (APD)
Officer Easley (APD)
Corporal Davis (NMMP)
Adam Brandl and family
Michahl and Maryann
Jonathan Tate
Matt Serfoss and Cheyanne Rolf
Slade Foster
Donna Smith
Anthony Skaff
David Necessary
Roberto Tijerina
Scott and Karen Shaw
Pat Vanover
Markus and Alex Lagmanson
Richard and Amber Stephens
Patrick Storer
Justin Toler and family
Jeremy Leigh
Andy Arigulin and Cyndi Chambers (DPS)
Katherine Johnson
Jesus Armas and family
Elliot O’Hara and family
Phillip Moss and family
Johnny Zavala and family
Mark Kanda and family
Josh Travieso and family
Steve Teas and family
Jarred Manbeck and family
Ian Haynes and family
Nan Chang and family
Chi and Jen Poon
Patrick Storer
Jim Nagle and family

Blinded Veterans Association South Texas sends thank you letter to the Vandrys

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The Blinded Veterans Association president Guadalupe “Wally” Guerra and Vice President Jose Cotto of the South Texas Regional group of Blind veterans sent a thank you letter to William and Chandra Vandry for speaking and sponsoring the Blind Veterans Association of Texas.

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BVASTRG President “Wally’ Guerra and William Vandry

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BVASTRG Vice President Jose Cotto and Chandra Vandry

Vandry Blind research, Camp challenge, and nutrition for sight

Pain, nutrition, Philanthropy 1 Comment

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Chandra and I with our precious blind children

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A thank you card written by the blind children from the camp on braille paper

My wife and I work with the legally blind.  I have been learning new things about the blind since 1997.  In 1998 I met a group in Temple.  I saw how unfortunately many who are legally blind have more disadvantages than visual.  I met a friend in 1999 who attended Criss Cole, which is a vocational education program for legally blind to get into the workplace.  She is legally blind, and asked me if I could teach a little Jiu-jitsu to her fellow students.  I told her I would be happy too.  I learned that many who are legally blind have other issues such as being confined to accept limitations, and to settle for them.  I taught on Sundays and did so for a few years.  I remember my first challenge dealing with a blind student.  It had nothing to do with sight.  There was a 20 year old girl who did not listen, interrupted my class and was trying to twist another blind student’s arm.  I stopped, and gave her a definition of respect, courtesy, and how I did not appreciate that behavior.  I notified her that I was here on request, and was not going to tolerate disrupting my class.  She was born blind.  This may have been the first time in her life she was ever not pitied, or felt sorry for.  Something happened.  She became the best student that day.  She remembered the moves, terminology, and began helping her partner.  I was so proud of her, but I had to pontificate on why she was like that to start with.  In 1998 I met a legally blind women who formed a group  for blind people.  However, each blind person I met, I realized each of them were cursed with pity and each of them were dependent on family or friends for basic needs.  I wrote an article in 2012 when I taught the first camp at the school of the blind in an article with this quote:

“..I really would love to see (no pun intended) all blind people and visually impaired get a type of education, a type of work or career, and to progress forward. They also need to know they are not alone, and not abandoned….and to sit, talk and let these blind and visually impaired students know that they are people, and we do not involve pity or sympathy. This is what martial arts is about…”1

When people develop blindness, they have one of three main causes:

1) An inborn genetic trait

2) A condition generated over time due to either malnutrition

3) A TBI (traumatic Brain Injury)

Most blind persons deal with their conditions according to how they are taught to recover.  Vocational education, cane training, learning braille, developing transportation and other changes of life.  One issue I have never heard once in meetings with any groups, executives, staff or organizations relating to the legally blind is nutrition.  The WHO in my 2013 article is quoted as saying 80% of all visual impairment can be avoided or cured.  In that past article, I mentioned some of my goals teaching the blind at my clinics:

1. I remind them how they have goals, focus on them, and never let anyone deter, or put you down because of your condition.

2. Maintain goals with daily reminders.

3. The third is to study nutrition.

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My back up Law Enforcement officers from APD and Travis County speaking to Camp challenge on practical self defense

 

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Grandmasters Carlos and Helio Gracie pose

 

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Below are photos of thank you letters from blind children at the camp.

 

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Points about nutrition regarding blindness I researched in medical journals are some of the following:

Spinach vs. Age related Macular degeneration

Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) November 2, 1994, sings the praises of spinach.

C and E vs. Cataracts

Those who eat more sensibly and supplement antioxidants such as vitamins C and E develop cataracts much more slowly, if at all, even from lengthy sun exposure. In the Nurses’ Health Study, women who supplemented vitamin C for 10 years or longer had 77% lower prevalence of early opacities and 83% lower prevalence of moderate opacities, compared with those who consumed little of the vitamin.

Macular degeneration and diet

Monosodium glutamate (MSG), aspartame and nearly all processed foods contain dangerous quantities of glutamate, aspartate, cysteine and related compounds. These excitotoxic drugs, added to foods, discharge nerve cells in the mouth to augment the sensation of flavor.  Aspartame breaks down into carcinogenic, eye-destroying formaldehyde and deadly methyl alcohol.

Dr. Wright on selenium, taurine, vitamin E and zinc

  Some patients of his recovered from macular degeneration using this therapy and have stayed clear of it for as long as four years.

Vitamin D and calcium

Arthur A. Knapp, MD, used 50,000 units of vitamin D and one gram of calcium on intermittent days. These helped against eye conditions including myopia, keratoconus, cataract, optic nerve atrophy and retinitis pigmentosa.

Lea Davies on inhaled steroids and glaucoma

Davies from Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, DC, adds that inhaled steroids may cause about one-third of the 3,000 glaucoma cases developing each year among Americans over 65.2

In my article last year, I discussed more on nutrients and medical resources:

Quitting smoking reduces the risk

From JAMA Ophthalmology, news release, Jan. 2, 2014.

Effects of DL-alpha-lipoic acid diabetic cataract in rats

( Zhonghua Yan Ke Za Zhi. 2004.)  Alpha lipoic acid ingested orally can effectively reduce STZ-induced blood glucose and inhibit diabetic cataract formation in rats.

Selenium has been linked with a reduced risk of cataract

Selenium activates the antioxidant enzyme glutathione peroxidase, protecting cell membranes from oxidative damage.

Bilberry has been studied in rodents as a way to prevent cataracts

Lutein and zeaxanthin are the only carotenoids detected in the human lens

These nutrients play a role in preserving lens clarity. (Archives of Ophthalmology, January 2008.)

Higher intakes of vitamin C

Intake of antioxidants had long-term protective associations against development of nuclear cataract. (Am J Clin Nutr 2008;87 1899-1905.)

Medications, prescription drugs and eye disease

1. Beta blocker heart medication use is associated with a higher incidence of cataracts. (British J Ophthalmology 2009.)

2. SSRI drugs, such as Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil, increase the risk for this eye disease.

3. Treatment with topical corticosteroids increases the risk.3

My wife and I spoke at the Blind Veterans Association in San Antonio, Texas.  There are so many soldiers who have disabilities, pain, and blind diseases.  I spoke on diseases and more on research nutrition correlates with vision in medical journals:

Cod liver oil: a potential protective supplement for human glaucoma

From Int J Ophthalmol. 2011; 4(6): 648–651.  Published online Dec 18, 2011.   doi: 10.3980/j.issn.2222-3959.2011.06.15

Oral Zinc in Macular Degeneration

(Newsome D A, Swartz M, et al: Oral Zinc in Macular Degeneration. Arch Ophthal, 1988; 106: 192-198.)

Nutritional supplementation, electrical stimulation and age related macular degeneration

(J Orthomol Med, 1993;2. 8: 168-1715. Allen, MJ: Treating age related macular degeneration, Letter. Optom Vis Sci, 1994; 71: 293.)

Opthalmologist Dr. Ronald Pugh on Macular degeneration

Dr. Pugh discussing Macular degeneration and how 27 of his patients were reversed with supplements and minerals.

Dr. Ronald Grisanti Research on carnosine and cataracts

(Quinn PJ, et al, Carnosine: its properties, functions and potential therapeutic applications, Molec Aspects Med, 13; 5:379-444, 1992)4)

Speaking to veterans, my wife and I also brought our invented product called St Jude’s Miracle Oil®.  Our product is a proprietary blend of 9 essential oils registered under the US Trademark and Patent office, and is protected by trademark and patent laws.  The special blend is a trade secret not public, and is also protected by law.

The product has anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-histaminic actions.  Each particular oil can be referenced from medical journals such as the NCBI, PubMed, JAMA and the Essential oils Desk reference book 5th edition.  We sampled it to many soldiers in pain and we look forward to our research with PTSD and legally blind veterans.

Going back to the point of this article, the above references on nutrition are just a scratch.  Above you can read a common relationship with Glaucoma, Retinitis Pigmentosa to diabetes or other nutrition related causes.  Why do we not review nutrition in conjunction with our other therapies.  Doctors usually tell people to get exercise, eat your fruits and vegetables, but the data on nutrition they are lacking.  If the World health organization states 80% of blindness can be prevented, shouldn’t we pay more attention?

I was at my bank making a deposit.  The teller was talking about her glasses.  I told her I didn’t know she wears glasses.  She told me she wears contacts, but her sight is bad.  She stated her mother is legally blind with Macular degeneration.  I was immediately thinking of Opthalmologist Dr. Pugh who studied nutrition to improve his patients vision.  I asked her if there was nutrition that could help her restore some vision, what would she do?  She responded by telling me she wouldn’t do anything, that she sees fine with her contacts.

Each year I speak at the Texas School of the Blind and I teach a two hour course on Jiu-jitsu, philosophy and speak on health.  My wife and I were at the TSBVI career fair to speak to blind students about joining the workforce when they graduated.  A young girl spoke to me, and told me she desired to have an independent life.  I told her if she ever wanted advice to contact me.  There are some students who have blindness from birth or DNA defects.  But others who are starting to develop Glaucoma, Retinitis Pigmentosa, Macular Degeneration or other forms of blindness later in life related to diabetes, malnutrition and other environmental factors we should have funding for research.

I love to teach blind persons a class in Jiu-jitsu.  It teaches them how they don’t need their eyes and are on a level playing field.  This application should also be applied in life, work, health, goals and philosophy.  Ironically, both blind persons and normal vision individuals do not have access to data out there by medical researchers for vision.  Our society deserves it, and is entitled to it.

Professor William Vandry

References

1. http://www.williamvandry.com/2012/06/29/professor-william-vandry-teaches-blind-and-visually-impaired-students-at-texas-school-of-the-blind-self-defense-confidence-and-overcoming/

2. http://www.williamvandry.com/2013/06/25/can-the-legally-blind-train-in-brazilian-jiu-jitsu-and-overcome-blindness-william-vandry-says-absolutely/

3. http://www.williamvandry.com/2014/06/13/legally-blind-and-visually-impaired-overcoming-challenges-with-vandry-racehorse-nutritional-research/

4. http://www.williamvandry.com/2014/12/31/our-military-veterans-legal-blindness-ptsd-and-nutrition/

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William Vandry invited to speak at TSBVI Career fair

Philanthropy, Professor Vandry's View Comments Off on William Vandry invited to speak at TSBVI Career fair

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http://austinbjj.com/austinbjj/william-vandry-addresses-blind-students-at-tsbvi-career-fair/

Our Military Veterans, legal blindness, PTSD and nutrition

Pain, nutrition, Philanthropy Comments Off on Our Military Veterans, legal blindness, PTSD and nutrition

 

2 Corinthians 5:7 – For we walk by faith, not by sight

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 December 20, 2014

My wife and I were invited to speak at the December 20 Blinded Veterans Association South Texas regional group in San Antonio at the DFW.  The President of the  BAV STRG Walley Guerra and I spoke previously about blind diseases.  The veterans in this Association are all legally blind, and have other health issues.  I speak and teach Jiu-jitsu at the Texas School of the Blind each year.  I have sponsored many blind students from Criss Cole Vocation school for the blind students since 1999.  I learned so much more regarding veterans, their personal challenges and different forms of blindness and how it has affected them.

In attendance were the BVA national President Mark Cornell, BVA-STRG President Walley Guerra, BVA-STRG Vice President Jose A Cotto, BVA-STRG Secretary Elbert brown, Audie Murphy VA Hospital Visual Impairment service team coordinator Ronita Jones, and active duty soldiers from Ft. Sam Houston.

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Wally Guerra asked us to address Military Veterans with different conditions of legal blindness, and  research on nutrition.

I did research on different forms of blindness.  I started with RP.

Retinitis Pigmentosa

I found a Study from Harvard that shows Vitamin A Slows Retinitis Pigmentosa1.  The issue has been many of the cheap, synthetic Vitamin A supplements.   Beta-carotene is considered an antioxidant and is also a precursor to vitamin A. This compound helps maintain healthy skin and also plays a vital role in eye health according to the World Health Organization.  Indicators include night blindness, hair loss, skin irritation and dry or inflamed eyes.  Vitamin A actually is best derived from animal sources.  Those are better digested.  Cod liver oil is the best source for Vitamin A, not a synthetic.

Cod liver oil: a potential protective supplement for human glaucoma

In my research, I found in the NCBI under the Journal of Opthalmology how Cod liver oil protects against Glaucoma:

“…One nutritional supplement with potential therapeutic value is cod liver oil, a dietary supplement that contains Vitamin A and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs).  Vitamin A is important for preserving normal vision and it is a well-known antioxidant that prevents the oxidative damage that contributes to the etiology and progression of glaucoma.  Vitamin A is also a crucial factor for maintaining the integrity of conjunctival and corneal ocular surfaces, and preventing the impairment of ocular epithelium caused by topical antiglaucomatous drugs. Omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial for glaucoma patients as they decrease IOP, increase ocular blood flow, and improve optic neuroprotective function. In this article, we propose that Cod liver oil as a combination of Vitamin A and omega-3 fatty acids, should be beneficial for the treatment of glaucoma. However, further studies are needed to explore the relationship between cod liver oil and glaucoma…”

Reference:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3340802

Int J Ophthalmol. 2011; 4(6): 648–651.  Published online Dec 18, 2011.   doi: 10.3980/j.issn.2222-3959.2011.06.15

Beta-Carotene

Beta-carotene is a carotenoid, one of a group of plant pigments known to have antioxidant and other effects. This is a substance in plants that’s quickly converted into vitamin A inside the body. Beta-carotene is often thought of as a form of vitamin A itself. Having normal levels of vitamin A is key for good vision, strong immunity, and general health.

Retinitis Pigmentosa Study with low current stimulation and nutrition.  I referenced Retinal Research studies that may be promising for RP.  A study regarding weak electrical currents applied to the eyes along with nutrition had shown visual and psychological improvements to RP Patients.

References

1.Voaden M J: Retinal Research, Pergamon Press, 1991; 10: 294.

2. Hayes KC, et al: Science, 1975; 188: 949.3. Bradford RW, Allen HW: Taurine in Health and Disease. Volume 2, No. 6, USA, Raum and Zeit, 1991; 17-23.

3. Newsome D A, Swartz M, et al: Oral Zinc in Macular Degeneration. Arch Ophthal, 1988; 106: 192-198.

4. Michael, LD, Allen MJ: Nutritional supplementation, electrical stimulation and age related macular degeneration. J Orthomol Med, 1993;2. 8: 168-1715. Allen, MJ: Treating age related macular degeneration, Letter. Optom Vis Sci, 1994; 71: 293.

5. Kurtz JL: The principles and practice of ocular physical therapy for optometrists, Am J Optom Publ. 1930.

6. Wallace L: The treatment of macular degeneration and other retinal diseases using bioelectromagnetic therapy, J Optom Photother, 1997; 3.2. Rockland Corporation, 12320 E. Skelly Drive, Tulsa, OK 74128.

7. Richer, S: “Atrophic ARMD, a Nutrition responsive disease. Guest Editorial, J Am Optomc Assoc, 1996; 67: 6-10.

8. Richer, S: Multicenter ophthalmic and nutritional age-related macular degeneration study, parts 1 and 2. J Am Optomc Assoc,, 1996: Vol. 67: 12-49.

9. Cheraskin E: Antioxidants in health and disease. J Am Optomc Assoc, 1996; 67: 50-57

10. June 1993 Archives of Ophthalmology

http://www.djo.harvard.edu/site.php?url=/physicians/oa/377

Opthalmologist Dr. Ronald Pugh on Macular degeneration

I found an interesting story about Opthalmologist Dr. Ronald Pugh discussing Macular degeneration and how 27 of his patients were reversed with supplements and minerals.  Pugh originally argued with Dr. Joel Wallach, known as the lead expert on minerals.  Dr. Pugh later apologized for refuting nutrition and Macular Degeneration.  His formal apology and endorsement for nutrition and eye disease is called ‘Seeing is believing’ by CD.  A clip can be found on youtube

Reference:

1https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=acIQUWR_qvc

Dr. Ronald Grisanti Research on carnosine and cataracts

I discussed research on Dr. Grisanti’s theories on Carnosine and cataracts.

http://www.functionalmedicineuniversity.com/public/852.cfm

Dr. Grisanti shows promising research claiming:

...When carnosine is acetylated, as in N-acetyl-L-carnosine, it becomes a time-release dipeptide that can move easily both into water-soluble as well as lipid-containing parts of the eye and improves DNA repair, thus bringing vision back to better levels...

...After six months, 90% of the eyes treated with N-acetyl carnosine showed improvements in visual acuity anywhere from 7-100%. 
...Glare sensitivity improved 27-100% in 88% of people. And there was no worsening of vision, as there should have been with time.

References:

1. Babizhayev M, at al, Efficacy of N-acetyl-carnosine in the treatment of cataracts, Drugs Res Devel, 3;2:87-103, 2002

2. Rogers Sherry, Total Wellness, Prestige Publishing

3. Babizhayev MA, Biomarkers and special features of oxidative stress in the anterior segment of the eye linked to lens cataract and the trabecular meshwork injury in primary open-angle glaucoma

4. challenges of dual combination therapy with N-acetylcarnosine lubricant eye drops and oral formulation of nonhydrolyzed carnosine, Fundam Clin Pharmacol. 2012 Feb;26(1):86-117.

5. Babizhayev MA, Deyev AI, Yermakova VN, Brikman IV, Bours J, Lipid peroxidation and cataracts: N-acetyl-carnosine as a therapeutic tool to manage age-related cataracts in human and in canine eyes, Drugs R D. 2004;5(3):125-39.

6. Babizhayev MA, Micans P, Guiotto A, Kasus-Jacobi A, N-acetylcarnosine lubricant eyedrops possess all-in-one universal antioxidant protective effects of L-carnosine in aqueous and lipid membrane environments, aldehyde scavenging, and transglycation activities inherent tocataracts: a clinical study of the new vision-saving drug N-acetylcarnosine eyedrop therapy in a database population of over 50,500 patients, Am J Ther. 2009 Nov-Dec;16(6):517-33

7. Quinn PJ, et al, Carnosine: its properties, functions and potential therapeutic applications, Molec Aspects Med, 13; 5:379-444, 1992

Research on patients who have been left partially blind by a stroke

A promising therapy is offering hope to patients who have been left partially blind by a stroke. (From the 2005 The Wall Street Journal)

The vision therapy is one of the first to exploit the brain’s rewiring capabilities, known as neuroplasticity, though the notion holds promise for treating a number of conditions such as stroke-induced paralysis or obsessive-compulsive disorder. For decades scientists had thought that the brain undergoes very little change after childhood. They knew the adult brain could form the new connections that underlie learning and memory, but believed that its basic structure was immutable and fixed, or “hard wired.”

VRT at the International Stroke Conference in New Orleans, researchers at the University of Magdeburg, Germany, say that in a small study, one-third of VRT patients had modest but noticeable improvement, and one-third had strong improvement. In a few cases, the entire blind spot disappeared. One-third of the patients in the study had no improvement in their vision. Participants were followed for three years after treatment and the results were found to be lasting, according to lead researcher, Bernhard Sabel.

Dr. Sabel helped form a closely held company, NovaVision, headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla., to offer the therapy, which received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2003. Clinics began offering it commercially last year. Today, seven clinics, including the Neurological Institute of New York at ColumbiaUniversityMedicalCenter and EmoryEyeCenter in Atlanta, Ga., offer it. The six-month regimen averages around $6,000 and isn’t currently covered by insurance

PTSD

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that PTSD afflicts:

• Almost 31 percent of Vietnam veterans

• As many as 10 percent of Gulf War (Desert Storm) veterans

• 11 percent of veterans of the war in Afghanistan

• 20 percent of Iraqi war veterans

PTSD is not simply a ‘military’ or ‘war’ syndrome.  It is a condition with multiple symptoms from different sources.  A type of trauma, whether shock, injury, mental pain, can cause different reactions.  Those with PTSD are not insane people, or someone that just has a problem in their mind.  It is a condition that both civilian and military people can have.  Nutrition for the Brain I discussed from:

http://naturalnutmeg.com/drugless-healing-of-ptsd/

…regarding Neurotransmitters, the biochemical messengers of the brain and natural supplements such as GABA and amino acids Taurine, Theanine, Glycine, Glutamine, and 5-hydroxy Tryptophan; and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), which is essential for neurotransmitter metabolism.  In addition, the Omega-3 fatty acids, most readily obtained from a high-quality marine oil supplement, nourish brain cells and reduce inflammation that amplifies stress hormone levels, and are fundamental to any nutritional support program for PTSD….

Discussing more research on adrenals, sleep, proper hormone balance are definitely so needed in research and funding for PTSD.  I always bring a bottle of my St. Jude’s Miracle oilTM everywhere Chandra and I go.  We were supposed to speak for about 15 minutes.  We went a bit over, as many veterans began asking questions on research.  I thought it was great.  They are people who want to live healthier lives and we need to provide more research for those solutions.  Our oil was very positive when we sampled it to members.  Many have arthritis, and other conditions.

Chandra and I were very fortunate to serve our community and we presented a check for $500 to the Blinded Veterans Association.  They need public support, and we hope to work with them more in the future.  I sent a bottle of the oil to VP Jose Cottos.  He discussed his arthritis in his joints and inability to do many activities.  On Christmas day, I received an email from Jose:

“Merry X-mas to you ,Chandra and your loved ones.  I’m glad to report that for the first time in a long time I was able to walk one mile ,only stopping  once to rest for one minute.

Namaste,
Jose”

That made my Christmas day even better.  Don’t forget our Veterans, and don’t wait for Veterans day to post on facebook. There are 364 other days in the year.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Prof. William Vandry

Absorb and think

 

William and Chandra Vandry speak at Blinded Veterans Association Christmas luncheon South Texas Regional Group (STRG) at San Antonio VFW

Pain, nutrition, Philanthropy Comments Off on William and Chandra Vandry speak at Blinded Veterans Association Christmas luncheon South Texas Regional Group (STRG) at San Antonio VFW

 

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December 20, 2014, San Antonio DFW

The Blinded Veterans Association provides assistance through service programs, regional groups, and advocacy before the legislative and executive branches of government that makes life better for blinded veterans by encouragement and support.  The Blinded Veterans Association (BVA) was founded March 28, 1945, and chartered by U.S. Congress August 27, 1958. It is exclusively dedicated to serving the needs of the USA blinded veterans and their families.

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William and Chandra Vandry present $500 to the Blind Veterans Association STRG chapter, San Antonio

The Christmas lunch for the BVA featured the Color guard for opening and closing ceremonies.  In attendance were the BVA national President Mark Cornell, BVA-STRG President Walley Guerra, BVA-STRG Vice President Jose A Cotto, BVA-STRG Secretary Elbert brown, Audie Murph VA Hospital Visual Impairment service team coordinator Ronita Jones, and active duty soldiers from Ft. Sam Houston.

Special guests were the Wounded Warriors from Fort Sam Houston and William and Chandra Vandry, who are co inventors of St. Jude’s Miracle oilTM pain product, speakers of Got Pain clinics, researchers on the legally blind, PTSD, nutrition, pain and inflammation.  The Vandry’s are sponsors of their Summer project each year at the TexasSchool of the Blind. William is a 5th degree Professor in the Martial art of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu under Master Carlos Machado and Chandra is an R.N. in neurology and allergy.

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William and Chandra  Vandry with two Ft. Sam Houston Wounded Warriors and great soldiers for our country

BVA-STRG President Wally Guerra invited William and Chandra Vandry  to address Military Veterans with different conditions of legal blindness, and  research on nutrition.  The speech  discussed:

1)  Retinitis Pigmentosa

2) Study from Harvard shows Vitamin A Slows Retinitis Pigmentosa1

Reference: 1 June 1993 Archives of Ophthalmology

http://www.djo.harvard.edu/site.php?url=/physicians/oa/377

3) Opthalmologist Dr. Ronald Pugh on Macular degeneration

4) Dr. Ronald Grisanti Research on carnosine and cataracts

5) Research on patients who have been left partially blind by a stroke

6) PTSD,  and

7) Nutrition for the Brain

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 Blind Veterans Association STRG chapter President Walley Guerra and William Vandry

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Mr. and Mrs. Guerra of BVA STRG

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BVA Veteran, VA Hospital Visual Impairment service team coordinator Ronita Jones and Chandra Vandry

BVA members discussed their own health, occular diseases, and more information on research.  William and Chandra Vandry presented the BVA with a check for $500 to support the San Antonio chapter, Veterans in general, and to support the military.  If you are a Veteran who is legally blind in South Texas, you can contact BVA STRG President Wally Guerra at:

South Texas Regional Group (STRG)                                                                                                                                                              Blinded Veterans Association (BVA)                                                                                                                                                                       San Antonio, Texas 78217

www.southtexasbva.org/

www.bva-southtexas.org/

Or the National BVA contact:

www.bva.org/services.html

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