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Soak Up the Sun and Water

Legislation Threatening Existence of Online Pharmacies

Efforts by the White House during the past two years may take away your ability to purchase prescription medications online. There are two serious issues which are currently threatening America’s access to safe, affordable prescription drugs.

The initial threat is sourced by pending legislation on Capitol Hill known as the Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011 (Protect IP Act). This new bill will replace last year’s Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act (COICA). COICA would have created a list of online pharmacies for companies including Google, Visa, MasterCard, PayPal and Network Solutions to block. By classifying all non-U.S. online pharmacies as a risk to public health, the Protect IP Act will eliminate your right to affordable online medications. As a result, if the Protect IP Act is passed, all online Canadian and international pharmacies could no longer be accessible. These pharmacies may also be unable to defend themselves legally against those who shut them down.

The subsequent issue includes the American government’s plans to impede America’s access to reputable online pharmacies. The White House announced in 2010, the administration’s plans to completely shut down online pharmacy sites by “encouraging” Internet service providers, credit card companies, and search engines to bar America’s access to them.

The pharmaceutical companies have attempted to convince the American Public that international sourced medicines are hazardous but to no avail and now have influenced the creation of this new legislation. We recognize the importance of drug safety and that illegitimate pharmacies should be dealt with, however, we believe that the existence of certified online pharmacies should not be threatened.

You can prevent this legislation from becoming law. Voice your opinion by joining RxRights, a growing alliance of individuals and organizations that are dedicated to protecting and preserving America’s access to safe, inexpensive medications. You can send an email directly to your government representatives in Washington and also President Obama through the coalition’s website at Let your elected officials know today that you want and need access to affordable medications from safe, licensed online pharmacies. For more information, please visit

Another Lousy Label

Did you know that most vitamin water brands are owned by soft drink companies? Some of these soft drink companies are even facing lawsuits regarding dishonest marketing of their vitamin water products. The bulk of the controversy stems from the fact that the vitamin water is being marketed with terms such as “defence”, “restore”, and “multi-v” to imply that the product is a healthy alternative to other beverages. On the contrary, these vitamin water products contain almost the same amount of sugar as most soft drinks.

In fact, sugar is the largest component of the drink except for water, thus earning the moniker “liquid candy”. When confronted about the deceptive marketing, thse companies claim that “No consumer could reasonably be misled into thinking that these vitamin water products are a healthy beverage.”

A healthy body doesn’t come from the contents of a plastic bottle. There are several greater methods of fulfilling your daily vitamin requirements. Healthy eating habits play a large role in obtaining adequate amounts of vitamins. Fruits and vegetables contain high amounts of vitamins and minerals which promote optimal health. By eating the recommended servings of fruits and veggies, one should not have to depend on un-natural sources for vitamins.

Some fruits and vegetables with high nutritional value include spinach, carrots, kiwis, strawberries, apples, and so many more. People often wonder if the natural sugars in fruits are as harmful as the sugars found in junk food. However a safer and much healthier source of vitamins include the use of multivitamin supplements. Multivitamins are available in special formulations due to age differences and different vitamin needs. Thus it is even possible to purchase vitamins for kids. Discount vitamins do not require a doctor’s prescription nonetheless one should consult his or her doctor to discuss which vitamin is best for personal requirements. Note that these pills are meant to supplement your vitamin intake, not account for it

How Much Do You Know About the Sun?

The sun is shining which means those long days at the beach are back! While you’re at the beach or spending a nice day outdoors, did sunscreen protection cross your mind? If it didn’t, it’s time to think twice. Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in Americans. 1 out of 5 people are affected by skin cancer due to lack of protection against ultraviolet rays.

Basal cell carcinoma is the most common type of skin cancer but melanoma continues to be the deadliest. Melanoma only accounts for 5% of skin cancer but is the cause of 75% of deaths due to skin cancer.

Melanoma is the 2nd most common cancer in women and the 3rd most common in men. Rates of melanoma have also shown to be 6 times more common in wealthy neighborhoods than in poor neighborhoods. An estimated 900 deaths in the US were caused by melanoma in 2010. Since most of these deaths occurred in people who were in their twenties, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) along with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a new policy report considering tighter mandates for teens and tanning beds.

Skin cancer is caused by UV radiation from the sun and artificial light sources. Exposure by UV radiation causes DNA damage and suppresses the immune system. There are two different types of UV radiation, Ultraviolet A (UVA) which are long wave, and Ultraviolet B (UVB) which are short wave. UVA accounts for about 95% of UV radiation that reaches Earth’s surface. UVA is a main tanning ray and also penetrates the skin much more than UVB. UVB is a factor of skin aging, wrinkles, and damage to the most outer layer of skin. UVB is also the cause of skin reddening and sunburn.

Most Sun Protection Factors (SPF) only work against UVB wave lengths though you shouldn’t let that stop you from using sunscreen products. It is good to understand how SPF works in order to get the protection you want. A SPF 30 will not protect twice as much as SPF 15. The differences are that SPF 15 protects against 93% of UVB rays while SPF 30 protects against 97% of UVB rays.

If you are looking for UVA and UVB sunscreen the ingredients you should be looking for are zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. When using sunscreen, be sure to use it on the neck and ears as these are the most vulnerable areas of the body. Moreover, it is best to stay in the shade between 10 AM and 4 PM which is when UV rays are most powerful. When you are outside, make sure you are protected and take extra steps such as wearing light colors to avoid those nasty burns.



-BS Pharm, PharmD, RPh

Dr. Paul Zickler is a graduate of the University of Wester Ontario in 1972. After graduating from the faculty of medicine, Dr. Zickler practiced as an Emergency Physician for 18 years. He has then operated ambulatory medical and travel clinics for 12 years. Dr. Zickler has become an Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of British Columbia, a Director of Professional Programs for the Justice Institute of British Columbia (paramedic academy), a principal investigator for Phase 2 and 3 studies researching vaccines, and a founding member of the Canadian International Pharmacy Association. Dr. Zickler is passionate about combining western prescription medicine and natural medicines.

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