Chiropractor Chairs World Health Organization Meeting on Health Promotion

Dr. Elsangak, MD, DC Head of Clinical Proficiency at Life University

LIFE UNIVERSITY’S DR. HUSSEIN ELSANGAK MODERATES PANEL AT WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION FORUM ON HEALTH PROMOTIONLife University (LIFE) faculty member Dr. Hussein Elsangak, M.D, D.C., recently moderated a panel discussion at the 9th Global Forum on Health Promotion, held at the headquarters of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, Switzerland.   The November 12 forum was organized by the Alliance for Health Promotion (A4HP) in partnership with the WHO, with the theme “health promotion as a critical pathway to achieving Universal Health Coverage” (UHC). The event followed a historic political declaration by the United Nations in September 2019 which UN Secretary-General António Guterres hailed as “the most comprehensive agreement ever reached on global health – a vision for Universal Health Coverage by 2030.”   Dr. Elsangak is a full-time faculty member in the Clinical Sciences division of Life University’s College of Chiropractic and a member of the Alliance board. LIFE is home to the world’s largest single-campus Doctor of Chiropractic program, in addition to offering undergraduate and graduate degrees in a number of fields within the health sciences. Dr. Elsangak also serves as the Life University Global Initiatives Liaison for Europe, Eastern Mediterranean and Africa.   According to Dr. Elsangak, recent action by the UN and WHO prove that that the holistic approach to health has finally arrived.   “The creation of the WHO Division on Healthier Population is a testament to that, with an emphasis on people’s empowerment and healthy living choices rather than treating disease,” Dr. Elsangak said. “Life University is on the right path for global health. Its principles, philosophy and health education are in exact line with current global thinking and future direction.”   The 9th Global Forum on Health Promotion was held in the WHO Executive Board Room and brought together more than 100 international public health experts, including high-level WHO officials, discussing how their organizations are working toward healthier populations.   Opening remarks were delivered by Alliance President Bernard Kadasia and WHO Assistant Director-General Dr. Naoko Yamamoto. A keynote address was delivered by WHO Deputy Director-General Zsuzsanna Jakab. The first panel included a speech by Dr. Rüdiger Krech, WHO Director of Health Promotion.   The second panel, moderated by Dr. Elsangak, was called “Translating Global Declarations into Actions.” It highlighted the roles of academia, research, hospitals and civil society in health promotion, achievement of Sustainable Development Goals and implementation of UHC. A video of the entire forum can be found here.   Founded in 1997, the Alliance for Health Promotion is a nongovernmental agency whose membership is comprised of health institutions, agencies and individuals from around the world. A4HP is in Official Relations with the WHO and holds Consultative Status with the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).   Life University has been an A4HP member for several years, according to Dr. John Downes, University Vice President for Global Initiatives.   “Life University is pleased to continue our sponsorship and participation in the Alliance for Health Promotion and their annual global forum on health promotion,” Dr. Downes said. “As a board member, Dr. Elsangak continues to provide excellent leadership in the Alliance and holds important responsibilities within the forum through design and implementation, and as a moderator.”   In November 2018, Life University President Dr. Rob Scott participated in the 8th Global Forum on Health Promotion, which focused on the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases. Dr. Scott was a panelist on both the “High-Level Panel: Translating Global Declarations into Grass Roots Realities” and “Thematic Session 1: evidence-based health promotion strategies and actions to fight NCDs,” the latter of which was moderated by Dr. Elsangak.   In addition to its Office of Representation in Geneva and its membership in the A4HP, LIFE partners with three educational institutions in China and with Universidad de Iberoamérica (UNIBE) in Costa Rica. For more information about Life University’s Global Initiatives, click here.

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About Life University Founded in Marietta, Georgia in 1974, Life University is a health sciences institution most known for its chiropractic program, the largest single campus chiropractic program in the world. Life University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award baccalaureate, master’s, and Doctor of Chiropractic degrees, and also has programmatic accreditation through the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE), the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) and the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic  Training Education (CAATE). The mission of Life University is to empower students with the education, skills and values necessary for career success and life fulfillment, based on a vitalistic philosophy.

Kids with Horns, “Text Neck”

By Isaac Stanley-Becker

Mobile technology has transformed the way we live — how we read, work, communicate, shop and date.

But we already know this.

What we have not yet grasped is the way the tiny machines in front of us are remolding our skeletons, possibly altering not just the behaviors we exhibit but the bodies we inhabit.

New research in biomechanics suggests that young people are developing hornlike spikes at the back of their skulls — bone spurs caused by the forward tilt of the head, which shifts weight from the spine to the muscles at the back of the head, causing bone growth in the connecting tendons and ligaments. The weight transfer that causes the buildup can be compared to the way the skin thickens into a callus as a response to pressure or abrasion.

The result is a hook or hornlike feature jutting out from the skull, just above the neck.

In academic papers, a pair of researchers at the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia, argues that the prevalence of the bone growth in younger adults points to shifting body posture brought about by the use of modern technology. They say smartphones and other handheld devices are contorting the human form, requiring users to bend their heads forward to make sense of what’s happening on the miniature screens.

The researchers said their discovery marks the first documentation of a physiological or skeletal adaptation to the penetration of advanced technology into everyday life.

Health experts warn of “text neck,” and doctors have begun treating “texting thumb,” which is not a clearly defined condition but bears resemblance to carpal tunnel syndrome. But prior research has not linked phone use to bone-deep changes in the body.

“An important question is what the future holds for the young adult populations in our study, when development of a degenerative process is evident in such an early stage of their lives?” ask the authors in one paper, published in Nature Research’s peer-reviewed, open-access Scientific Reports. The study came out last year but has received fresh attention following the publication last week of a BBC story that considers, “How modern life is transforming the human skeleton.”

Since then, the unusual formations have captured the attention of Australian media, and have variously been dubbed “head horns” or “phone bones” or “spikes” or “weird bumps.”

Each is a fitting description, said David Shahar, the paper’s first author, a chiropractor who recently completed a PhD in biomechanics at Sunshine Coast.

“That is up to anyone’s imagination,” he told The Washington Post. “You may say it looks like a bird’s beak, a horn, a hook.”

However it is designated, Shahar said, the formation is a sign of a serious deformity in posture that can cause chronic headaches and pain in the upper back and neck.

Part of what was striking about the findings, he said, was the size of the bone spurs, which are thought to be large if they measure 3 or 5 millimeters in length. An outgrowth was only factored into their research if it measured 10 millimeters, or about two-fifths of an inch.

The danger is not the head horn itself, said Mark Sayers, an associate professor of biomechanics at Sunshine Coast who served as Shahar’s supervisor and co-author. Rather, the formation is a “portent of something nasty going on elsewhere, a sign that the head and neck are not in the proper configuration,” he told The Post.

Their work began about three years ago with a pile of neck X-rays taken in Queensland. The images captured part of the skull, including the area where the bony projections, called enthesophytes, form at the back of the head.

Contrary to conventional understanding of the hornlike structures, which have been thought to crop up rarely and mainly among older people suffering from prolonged strain, Shahar noticed that they appeared prominently on X-rays of younger subjects, including those who were showing no obvious symptoms.

The pair’s first paper, published in the Journal of Anatomy in 2016, enlisted a sample of 218 X-rays, of subjects ages 18 to 30, to suggest that the bone growth could be observed in 41 percent of young adults, much more than previously thought. The feature was more prevalent among men than among women.

The effect — known as enlarged external occipital protuberance — used to be so uncommon, Sayers said, that one of its early observers, toward the end of the 19th century, objected to its title, arguing that there was no real protrusion.

That’s no longer the case.

Another paper, published in Clinical Biomechanics in the spring of 2018, used a case study involving four teenagers to argue that the head horns were not caused by genetic factors or inflammation, pointing instead to the mechanical load on muscles in the skull and neck.

And the Scientific Reports paper, published the month before, zoomed out to consider a sample of 1,200 X-rays of subjects in Queensland, ages 18 to 86. The researchers found that the size of the bone growth, present in 33 percent of the population, actually decreased with age. That discovery was in stark contrast to existing scientific understanding, which had long held that the slow, degenerative process occurred with aging.

They found instead that the bone spurs were larger and more common among young people. To understand what was driving the effect, they looked to recent developments — circumstances over the past 10 or 20 years altering how young people hold their bodies.

“These formations take a long time to develop, so that means that those individuals who suffer from them probably have been stressing that area since early childhood,” Shahar explained.

The sort of strain required for bone to infiltrate the tendon pointed him to handheld devices that bring the head forward and down, requiring the use of muscles at the back of the skull to prevent the head from falling to the chest. “What happens with technology?” he said. “People are more sedentary; they put their head forward, to look at their devices. That requires an adaptive process to spread the load.”

That the bone growth develops over a long period of time suggests that sustained improvement in posture can stop it short and even ward off its associated effects.

The answer is not necessarily swearing off technology, Sayers said. At least, there are less drastic interventions.

“What we need are coping mechanisms that reflect how important technology has become in our lives,” he said.

Shahar is pressing people to become as regimented about posture as they became about dental hygiene in the 1970s, when personal care came to involve brushing and flossing every day. Schools should teach simple posture strategies, he said. Everyone who uses technology during the day should get used to recalibrating their posture at night.

As motivation, he suggested reaching a hand around to the lower rear of the skull. Those who have the hornlike feature can probably feel it.

Inflammation from Food can tear ligaments

If you eat too much sugar, flour and fried foods your muscle become weak on the cellular level.

Just came back to work from a great lecture on general inflammation by Dr. David Seaman, DC, MS. Did you know that what you eat can tear your ligaments and discs? In the scientific literature there are hundreds of published papers over the last 20 years that prove and support this concept.

Hypothalamic Immune signaling
The left side is normal tissue based on a “good” diet. The right side is what happens when you eat too much sugar, flour, and refined oils. *Picture comes from the journal article referenced below.

Pro-inflammatory foods will ultimately weaken ALL tissues; muscles, bones, nerves and organs to the point of failure! Not only will you gain weight that is hard to lose but you joints and muscles will weaken and become arthritic WITHOUT physical trauma. Osteoarthritis has been traditionally taught as “wear and tear” or “injury” arthritis but now has been proven to be autoimmune triggered by food and environmental factors. Yes you will have an arthritic knee after that football tackle but it will heal and not chronically swell as you get older from the injury if you have a “good” diet. But the swollen knees and shoulders as you age are from your poor diet which has made you over-weight and environmental pollutants which get “stuck” inside your body weakening it further.

This concept of tissue degradation because of destructive components becoming part of normal tissues like muscles and tendons explains how seemingly low force movements cause BIG injuries that seem trauma or mechanical in origin when they are not. Over time, years and decades your muscles become infiltrated by “bad” fats, inflammatory molecules and immune cells that cause inflammation as part of the clean-up process related to this daily tissue micro tearing or damage. This infiltration means that your tendons, muscles and cartilage(discs) are not as dense and strong later in life like they were when you were younger since this is an accumulation process over time. This weakening of your tissues takes a prolonged amount of time. Now add aging, meaning that your body doesn’t respond as efficiently or fast as it used to at the chemical level, this in turn slows down our physical performance and healing. As time and over-eating these “bad” foods continues you accumulate “junk” in your cells or pro-inflammatory molecules. Now when a 35 or 45 year old tears a meniscus while jogging or walking up the stairs instead of thinking injury from physical activity you should consider tissue failure under normal physical stress caused by poor diet! This was NOT a mechanical injury albeit the stepping or running triggered it but it only tore or became subluxated because of the acquired structural weakness due to chemical mediators. FAT. This was a directly related to your bad diet.

So now you show up at the physical therapist’s office they treat you like they always have, for a “mechanical” injury and do rehab and you heal. Maybe you were sharp enough to see your chiropractor and they do something similar and add chiropractic adjustments (PT’s are not legally aloud to adjust or manipulate joints in most states). And here too your knee heals and you’re running again. But… If the weakened tissue from pro-inflammatory agents like leukotrienes is not addressed your lifestyle will cause other tissues to fail and you will be destined to repeat this back and knee injury scenario again and again! Worse yet this same degradation from eating poorly is happening EVERYWHERE in your body; your heart, your kidneys, your liver, you intestines, your brain, your sexual organs, everywhere. Then one day you middle aged and you have a heart attack. All this could most likely have been prevented had someone caught the problem, the poor diet.

In our office we not only do the chiropractic, the physical therapy rehab we always include the nutritional detective work to give our patients the fullest recovery and lowest chance of re-injury or organ failure. If this pro-inflammatory state that sugar, grains and refined oils has led you to isn’t addressed you will be a cardiac or brain disease victim later in life if you are not one already. According to top researchers, Carey Lumbeng and Alan Saltiel1 these joint and muscle injuries should be treated like heart disease and not just soft tissue injuries. (I have paraphrased their exact comment).

If you do not address your diet and environment you will be destined for a shortened life full of muscle and joint injuries, unnecessary prescriptions and doctor visits. Find a holistic doctor that uses chiropractic, nutrition and rehab exercise to fix your injuries and improve your total health.


1.Carey N. Lumeng and Alan R. Saltiel,
Inflammatory links between obesity and metabolic disease. J Clin Invest. 2011 Jun 1; 121(6): 2111–2117. Published online 2011 Jun 1. doi: 10.1172/JCI571321.

How Do We Get Results?

surface_EMG
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How Do We Measure Your Progress?

We use the latest and most accurate technology to measure how well the “inside” of your body is healing and base all our care on these measurements and reflex markers along with your symptomology.  Gathering this information on each visit gives the doctor information that they need to make a correction and keep the healing process moving as quickly as possible, making you a more energetic, active and happy person.  We all are aging so why not age as well as possible!  No other profession checks your body’s SELF REGULATION SYSTEM like we do.  Regular checkups of your body’s self-regulation and reflex system gives the doctor a real-time assessment of what is working at optimum and what is below par on each visit.  Then a focused and personalized plan can be put in place to find the true cause of your weaknesses and get you back in shape or keep you in shape if you are on Wellness Care!  We understand that symptoms or poor performance brought you in here for help and we want to help you get well but remember this problem started on the “inside” before you noticed any symptoms. There was some interference and a vital deficiency that started way before you could feel anything that was slowly degrading your body and health.  The great thing about our system is that it can quickly be rechecked on each visit and is very accurate when done by a trained professional with thousands of hours of experience like our doctor.   From time to time more high tech evaluations like the one you just went through are done in addition to your regular treatment visits. This is to measure and compare the progress of your physiology and neurology, again taking specific measurements of what is going on inside your body where you can’t “feel” anything happening.  Using Heart Rate Variability, Surface EMG, Spinal Thermography Differential Scanning, Orthopedics, Chiropractic and basic vital sign instrumentation gives the doctor the most accurate picture of what is going on inside your body before it hurts.  All this data gives the doctor a deeper understanding which helps you better, knowing when you are finally stable enough to go on Wellness Care.

How to Avoid Catching the Flu

3 Things YOU Can Do to Avoid Catching the Flu

First you have to understand the Flu Vaccine has more risks and damage it will do to you than it does “prevention”.  Don’t let the media campaigns wear you down into getting “stuck”.  Don’t be pressured by your job or coworkers, tell them you “opt out”.  I know plenty of pharmacists that NEVER take the vaccine for them or their family although they give it to hundreds as part of their “job”. (What a conflict, glad I don’t have that philosophical issue!).  I have never had a Flu or Shingles vaccine and never will.  My children were not vaccinated when they were born or in school back in the 90’s and are very healthy adults now.  Not to mention they hardly missed any school due to illness.  They were always healthy while all their vaccinated friends were out regularly in the cold and flu season!

So what can you do to strengthen your immune system and body to stay healthy?

  1. Hydration is crucial.  Bottled or filtered water, 48 to 64 oz per day depending on your size and activity level.  Coffee, teas, even herbal tea are not hydration.  Water, water, water…and nothing but water.  Regular water is my favorite not enhanced vitamin water or alkaline water and definitely not reversed osmosis water.  RO water and distilled waters have less of the organic minerals that you need.  Alkaline water an mess up your digestion so don’t drink it with meal if you drink it, drink in 1 to 2 hours away from consuming any food.  You need water to run all the chemical reactions in your body including your immune system.
  2. Reduce stress, chill out take some needed “me time”.  Warm baths with essential oils for relaxation and immune stimulation work well.  I like Lavender, Peppermint, Oregano, Roman Chamomile, Orange, and Lemon oils.  (Sounds like a soup base!) Myrrh and Frankincense work well too but can be expensive.  Epsom salt and baking soda work when  you have muscle or joint pain , 24 oz of Epsom salt and 8 oz of baking soda to regular sized bath tube of hot water.   The baking soda is to help with water hardness, making the magnesium salts more absorbable.
  3. Regular nervous system check-ups.   Chiropractic and Nutrition Response Testing are the two best, most proven therapies to check for, find and fix nervous system irritation and organ weaknesses/nutritional deficiencies. Your nervous system controls everything!  Every cell, every molecule gets its orders from through your nervous system.   Chiropractors are specifically trained to find and remove physical nerve irritations called subluxations.  Nutritional testing using the Nutrition Response Testing method based on kinesiological reflexes helps me find and support any tissue weakness returning it back to normal or health status.  If your immune system is getting the messages through a nervous system that is subluxation-free and the nerves and organs are strong because you have the proper support and a good diet for you then you will most likely avoid the flu this and every season that you continue these healthy habits.

So see your chiropractor and Nutrition Response Doctor today.  I of course use both these approaches in my office to help all my patients, young and old stay healthy and avoid the flu and all other adverse conditions as much as possible.  Since I combined both health therapies, nutrition and chiropractic our results with wellness and people not having illnesses has dramatically improved.  Call us for more information now.  434-481-2012.

Free Coloring Book

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Download a FREE coloring book that you can print our for your children as many times as you want (or they want).  Cool chiropractic coloring pages to celebrate the very first Chiropractic Adjustment performed by D. D. Palmer on September 18, 1895.  123 years of chiropractic healing around the world thanks to DD.