18-28 Segment 1: Is Sex Addiction Real?

RHJ 18-28 A

Sexual addiction is not a real disorder, according to the DSM-5, the authoritative psychiatric manual. But, many experts disagree. Dr. Kenneth Paul Rosenberg, addiction psychiatrist from Weill Cornell Medical College and author of Infidelity: Why Men and Women Cheat, as well as Neil Strauss, author of The Truth: An Eye-Opening Odyssey Through Love Addiction, Sex Addiction, and Extraordinary Relationships, discuss why they think sex addiction is real and what can be done about it.

The controversy surrounding the classification of sex addiction as a legitimate condition is centered around several concerns, namely that the DSM manual has made mistakes before, that psychiatrists may be over-pathologizing normal human behavior, and that sex addicts are just seeking this classification as an excuse for their behavior. But, Dr. Rosenberg believes sex addiction is an entirely legitimate condition. It deals with dysfunctional sexual behavior in direct contrast with the addicted individuals’ ideals and moral standards, jeopardizing their families and, at times, their lives.

Dr. Rosenberg and Strauss say that sex addiction is often misunderstood. It’s often not about the sex itself, but about the validation and compulsion those who suffer from the condition experience, whether manifested in infidelity, pornography use, or visiting prostitutes. At the same time, they both believe that the 1-4% of the American population who have this condition should not be excused from the consequences of their behavior, especially any criminal acts, and should still be held responsible to manage their condition. Also, the two experts stress the importance of the harm this condition causes the victims, namely the spouses of sex addicts. Several treatments are offered for individuals with sexual addiction, including individual treatment, group therapy, and medication.

For more information about our guests, their books, or treatment for sexual addiction, see the links below.

Guests:

  • Dr. Kenneth Paul Rosenberg, addiction psychiatrist at Weill Cornell Medical College and author of Infidelity: Why Men and Women Cheat
  • Neil Strauss, author of The Truth: An Eye-Opening Odyssey Through Love Addiction, Sex Addiction, and Extraordinary Relationships

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18-28 Segment 2: Vitamin D and Preterm Births

RHJ 18-28 B

 

Over 1,000 babies are born prematurely every day in the United States, costing us 12 billion dollars a year. Karen Howard, Executive Director of the Organic and Natural Health Association, says that an adequate level of vitamin D in the mother’s bloodstream could help solve this problem. She points to a study done by the Medical University of South Carolina that, according to Howard, validates her claim, and she explains what we should be doing to get enough vitamin D.

According to the study, the risk of preterm birth in women with a vitamin D deficiency was reduced by 50%, simply by gaining an appropriate level of the vitamin. Howard says that this finding needs to be widely advertised, because many people and doctors are misinformed. Many studies have focused on dosage amounts of vitamin D, but Howard says what really matters is the amount that gets into our bloodstreams. Furthermore, the amount of vitamin D that we need is often much higher than generally believed.

The best way to get vitamin D is to spend time in the sun without sunscreen. While many dermatologists encourage the use of sunscreen to prevent skin cancer, Howard says it is the enemy of vitamin D. Also, people with darker skin colors have the added challenge of needing to spend more time in the sun in order to get an appropriate level of vitamin D. For a person with white skin, being in the sun three times a week for 20 minutes without sunscreen is sufficient. But, for those who can’t do this or need to spend much longer in the sun, dietary supplements can help. Howard encourages everyone to spread the word about the connection between vitamin D and reduced risks of preterm birth and, of course, to ensure they get their vitamin D.

For more information about vitamin D and preterm birth or about our guest, visit the links below.

Guest:

  • Karen Howard, Executive Director of the Organic and Natural Health Association

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Medical Notes 18-28

 

Medical Notes this week…

When it comes to cancer are you better off safe than sorry? Despite cancer screening’s potential risks, many Americans still want it. A study in the Journal of Experimental Psychology finds that more than a third of participants want to receive a hypothetical cancer screening, even when the possibility of serious harm is described in detail. Clinicians say screenings can produce false positives that could lead to unnecessary worry and follow up tests. They can also over-diagnose, resulting in costly and unnecessary treatment of cancers that will never spread.

Men who take low dose aspirin to ward off heart attacks have more reason to stay out of the sun. A study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology finds those who take aspirin have nearly double the risk of developing melanoma compared to men who don’t take it. However, scientists say that’s no reason to stop taking aspirin, which not only reduces heart attacks but also helps prevent a variety of cancers. Women taking aspirin showed no increased melanoma risk.

And finally, want to get more done at work? Scoot on over to a window. A study from Cornell University finds that natural light produces health benefits and increased productivity. Lack of daylight and access to views decrease the ability of the eye to relax and recover from fatigue, but natural light cuts eyestrain is by 51 percent and reduces computer vision syndrome which impacts 70 million workers worldwide.

And that’s Medical Notes this week.

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