Archive for February, 2013

World Cancer Day: Books on Cancer and its Treatment, Care, & Survival

Monday, February 4th, 2013

Author: Sherry Helms

World Cancer Day is an international observance that helps raise awareness of cancer and encourage its prevention, detection, and treatment among the people worldwide. Proclaimed to be celebrated each year on February 4, this global campaign against cancer was started, and has been coordinated by Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), a global consortium of more than 280 cancer-fighting organizations from over 90 countries. It is supported by World Health Organization (WHO), the International Atomic Energy Agency, and other international bodies to meet the target 5 of the World Cancer Declaration: Dispel damaging myths and misconceptions about cancer, under the tagline “Cancer – Did you know?”. The celebration of this day is a clarion call to researchers, health-care professionals, patients, governments, industry partners and the media across the globe to fight against cancer.

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide and accounted for 7.6 million deaths (approx. 13% of all deaths) in 2008, as reported by WHO, which has estimated that 84 million people will die of cancer between 2005 and 2015 without any intervention.

The Emperor of All Maladies is definitely the most appropriate title for the Siddhartha Mukherjee’s book on cancer that offers a comprehensive history of one of the greatest enemies of medical progress. In this Pulitzer prize-winning book, researcher and oncologist, Siddharth Mukherjee examines cancer with a cellular biologist’s precision, a historian’s perspective, and a biographer’s passion. “In 2010, about six hundred thousand Americans, and more than 7 million humans around the world, will die of cancer.” With this sobering statistic, Mukherjee begins his comprehensive and eloquent “biography” of cancer, one of the most virulent diseases of our time. An exhaustive account of cancer’s origins, this historical guide illustrates how modern treatments–multi-pronged chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, as well as preventative care–came into existence. While The Emperor of All Maladies is rich with the science and history behind the fight against cancer, it also provides a fascinating glimpse into the future of cancer treatments and a brilliant new perspective on the way doctors, scientists, philosophers and lay people have observed and understood the human body for millennia.

If you are a cancer treatment specialist, patient, or caretaker, you must need to know about the recent developments in cancer research. And for this, you can pick David Servan-Schreiber’s book Anticancer, A New Way of Life. This bestselling title addresses current developments in cancer research and offers tips on how people living with cancer can fight it and how healthy people can prevent it. Offering latest research on anticancer foods, including new alternatives to sugar, this book gives warnings about common food contaminants that have recently been proven to contribute to cancer progression. Servan-Schreiber provides us with a highly productive anticancer program.

For everyone concerning cancer as a patient or a caretaker, here is a groundbreaking book, Cancer: Step Outside the Box that breaks the centuries old conceptions about cancer and its treatments. This book succinctly explains the facts and deceptions that limit this fatal disease within the boundary of medical treatments only. It documents multiple cases of persecution and suppression of effective natural cancer treatments while exposing the corrupt cancer and pharmaceutical industry. A comprehensive book on alternative cancer treatments and health, it provides information on non-toxic supplements and the nutritional information along with traditional medicine. Truth be told, there are many potent and well-proven alternative strategies for preventing and treating cancer, which exclude surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation. Inside this book, you will find a wealth of information that your doctor probably doesn’t know.

Your diet has a direct influence on the efficacy of your treatment for any illness. So, here is a book, What To Eat During Cancer Treatment that contains 100 fast, flavorful recipes to help both patient and caregiver in cooking satisfying meals to combat some of the side effects of treatment. As all the recipes are organized by side effects, the book includes recipes for Brie and Apple Grilled Cheese to deal with nausea, Lemon Egg-Drop Soup for diarrhea, Blueberry-Peach Crisp for constipation, a Sherbet Shake for sore mouth, and Honey-Teriyaki Salmon for taste alterations.

Laughter is the best medicine –if you have any doubt on this universal statement, you should read “Cancer on Five Dollars a Day”, a survival story of a comedian.

In the spring of 2000, stand-up comedian Robert Schimmel was diagnosed with stage III non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and soon the fire of his white-hot career started to fizzle. But Schimmel never lost his sense of humor, his searing honesty, and most of all, his passion to make people laugh. Among all the inspiring and straight-talking personal survival stories told yet, Schimmel’s conversational account is a unique piece that emphasizes the importance and role a sense of humor can play in coping, learning and healing of cancer, the most deadly disease.

Alternately laugh-out-loud funny and deeply moving Cancer on $5 a Day is a stirring account of how one man’s face-off with a fatal illness helped him better understand himself, and ultimately changed his life.

In an attempt to lend our hand to this global awareness campaign for Cancer, we’ve mentioned above some books that are full of necessary information. Hope, these titles will meet their purpose of informing and bewaring people, and  the World Cancer Day will reach its goal of reducing death and illness caused by cancer by 2020.

Economic Development in the Americas Since 1500: Institutions and Endowments

Saturday, February 2nd, 2013

Guest Author: Stanley L. Engerman

 

“A book by Stanley L. Engerman and Kenneth L. Sokoloff”

 

Ken Sokoloff and I were concerned with two related questions.  First, what were the relative levels and growth patterns of income in North America (Canada and the United States) and Latin America (South America, Central America, Mexico, and the Caribbean) after the arrival of Columbus.  Second, what has been the explanation for the growth patterns observed.

The answer to the first question is that prior to 1750 economic development in Latin America exceeded that of North America, but after that the growth rates of per capita income in North America greatly exceeded those in South America, so that in the twentieth century per capita income in Latin America basically fell to less than one-half that in the United States and Canada.  The early high per capita income in South America and Mexico resulted from the century-long lead in settlement for the Spanish and Portuguese, and the fact that they went to the richest, most populous, and most developed societies in the Americas, the areas settled by the Aztecs and Incas, which together accounted for nearly three-quarters of the Native-American populations of the New World.

The explanation for these growth patterns has been a source of considerable debate among scholars. This has been concerned with the development of economic and social institutions in the Americas, and the relative importance of the patterns brought over to the New World by colonizers from the various European nations and the effects of the characteristics in the Americas, particularly the differences due to climate, resources, and topography which influence the nature of the crops (and livestock) that can be grown in different areas.  The tropical climate permitted the growth of sugar for export to Europe, and sugar was produced on large plantations utilizing large amounts of labor.  This labor was frequently done by slaves, and the existence of large landowners with political and economic power led to great inequalities of income, and Latin America has long been the area with the greatest extent of inequality in the world.  The natural conditions in most of the United States, particularly in New England and the Mid-Atlantic states differed.  The climate there was also too cold to permit sugar production and the principal crops were wheat and grains, which could optimally be produced on small scale, family farms by landowners or free laborers, often immigrants from England and elsewhere in Europe.  Thus the degree of inequality was less than in Latin America, and this was reflected in North America’s more extensive suffrage, the greater spread of education, a more liberal banking system, and a more egalitarian system of land allocation.  These favorable conditions for economic growth were influenced by the natural attributes in North America.  The various colonies of each European settling nation often had different institutions because of differences in natural conditions (as suggested by comparing New England and the British Caribbean).

 

Author’s Bio: Stanley L. Engerman is the John H. Munro Professor of Economics and Professor of History at the University of Rochester, and Research Associate for the National Bureau of Economic Research. He received his Ph.D. in economics from Johns Hopkins University.

Professor Engerman has authored and co-authored many books such as  Time on the Cross: The Economics of American Negro Slavery (with Robert Fogel); A Historical Guide to World Slavery (with Seymour Drescher); Slavery, Emancipation, and Freedom: Comparative Perspectives; and Slavery (with Seymour Drescher and Robert Paquette).

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