Vitamin D Levels

I am a two time breast cancer survivor.  My last round with breast cancer was in November 2014.  Treatment consisted of a lumpectomy and the suggestion of chemo therapy and herceptin.  I declined both drug treatments due to the toxic effects they would have on my heart.  The treatment plan I have chosen involves turning my immune system into a cancer fighting machine.  A critical part of my plan involves maintaining a Vitamin D level of at least 70 ng/ml.  I have been taking 9,000 iu of Vitamin D daily for months and my blood level was only 37 ng/ml.  This information led me to research Vitamin D absorption and I found that to maximize absorption Vitamin D must be taken with a meal that includes fat.  Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin.  If you are feeling tired, depressed and constantly fighting colds and flu get your Vitamin D level checked.

Restless Legs Syndrome

Restless Legs Syndrome or RLS is a nervous system disorder that causes the legs and sometimes the arms or torso to feel like they are crawling, have electricity or water running through them. Restless Legs Syndrome affects up to three percent of the population and is more common in women than men. Prescription medications used for treatment include Mirapex, Requip, Gabapentin and Lyrica. Low iron levels may contribute to RLS.  Over the counter supplements that can be helpful are iron supplements depending on iron level, B Vitamins and Magnesium. In addition to supplements, a homeopathic tablet called Hylands Restful Legs has been helpful in many of my Service Drug clients.


Prescription Savings Using Coupons

Many brand name prescription manufacturers offer coupons to decrease the cost of their drugs.  The coupons are available online and can be found by searching for coupons for the name of the prescription medication you are taking.  If you have questions about this or are unable to access the coupons find a pharmacy that is willing to help you.    


Vitamin D and Cancer Prevention

Vitamin D is an important nutrient for the prevention of many diseases and cancer is one of them.  High levels of Vitamin D of 70 to 100 ng/ml  are needed to fight cancer. To achieve these high levels of Vitamin D a dose of 10,000 iu daily may be required.  Before beginning a Vitamin D supplement have your physician get a blood level to determine your dose.  Please refer to these websites for more information on Vitamin D

A search of Vitamin D and cancer returns enomous amounts of useful information.  Vitamin D is critical in the prevention and reoccurence of breast cancer.

Invokana-New Prescription Drug for Diabetes

Invokana is a new prescription drug for type 2 diabetes.  It has a different mechanism of action than any of the other drugs used to treat type 2  diabetes.  Invokana uses the kidneys to excrete excess glucose.  Side effects are few and the benefits are great. Invokana decreases blood sugar, blood pressure and causes weight loss.  Kidney function must be normal to use Invokana.  A coupon and more information on Invokana can be found at

Rheumatoid Arthritis and Vitamin D

Fall is here and soon will come winter.  If you live in Minnesota like I do there are few chances to get sunlight and that means your Vitamin D level may be low.  There is strong evidence to support the fact that low Vitamin D levels worsen rheumatoid arthritis. My suggestion is to take Vitamin D 2,000 IU daily and at your next doctor appointment have your Vitamin D level checked to confirm your correct dose.  A website that may be of interest is

Another nutrient that is helpful for arthritis pain is Curcumin which is found in capsule form.  Curcumin is also known as the spice Tumeric.

If you would like to order these supplements call Service Drug at 1-800-950-4947.



Birth Control and Blood Clots

Recently my daughter, a nurse complained of excruciating right upper arm pain.  I thought she had been bitten by some sort of insect while at the beach but she insisted it was a blood clot.  Her arm was swollen, red and hot to touch.  The pain was persistent enough that she sought medical care.  The third doctor she saw finally figured out that indeed she had a blood clot in her arm.  Her only risk factor for the clot was estrogen/progesterone birth control pills.  The treatment for her condition is Lovenox injections for a few days to thin the blood quickly and Coumadin or Warfarin tablets for six months to continue to thin the blood so the clot will dissolve.  The danger of blood clots is that they can move from the arm or leg, and end up in the the lungs or brain which can be fatal.  My advice to those who are taking an estrogen/progesterone birth control product is to take an 81mg Aspirin at least 3 times a week if not daily with food to prevent stomach upset.  Aspirin should not be taken without a doctor’s order if you are on blood thinners or have a bleeding disorder.


Bone Health and Calcium

Calcium is required for bone formation, bone strength and muscle function.

A diet low in calcium can result in unnecessary bone fractures, weakening of the spine and muscle cramping.

Dietary requirements for calcium by age are:

* 1yr to 3yrs  500mg or 2 servings of milk

*4yrs to 8 yrs 800mg or 3 servings of milk

*9 yrs to adult 1,000mg to 1,300mg or 4 servings of milk

***a serving of milk is 8 ounces or 240ml or one cupfull

Other sources of calcium:



ice cream



sweet potato




soy milk, rice milk, almond milk, goat’s milk

calcium supplements

* A great tasting calcium supplement for all ages is Adora calcium 500mg chocolate supplements.  They are found in pharmacies with the calcium supplements and contain vitamin D.  Both milk and dark chocolate are available and will make any chocolate lover happy. If you cannot find Adora calcium chocolates contact Service Drug and we can mail them to you with a credit card number.  Service Drug # 1-800-950-4947.  Our address is Service Drug   218 W Washington   Brainerd, MN 56401




Summer Survival

In case you have not done so prepare your summer survival kit.

* Sunscreen SPF 30 that is under 2 years old.  Sunscreen should be reapplied every 2 hours or more often if swimming.  Do not forget the top of the ears, nose and bald heads. LIpbalm with sunscreen is also great to have o hand.

* Band-aids, antibiotic ointment, instant ice packs

*Aloe with lidocaine to keep in the refrigerator.  It instantly calms bug-bites, poison ivy, and sunburns
* Insect repellant that is safe to put on skin like lemon-eucalytus spray and an insect repellant for clothing only to protect yourself in the woods against ticks
* Talk to your doctor about a presciption for triamcinolone 0.1% cream for bad rashes and possibly an emergency prescription of doxycycline for tick borne diseases

Topical Pain Relievers

Topical pain relievers can be used for joint and muscle pain.  They are a good alternative or addition to oral pain medications such as acetaminophen, ibuprofen, aspirin and naproxen.  Topical pain relievers that work well contain methyl salicylate 10% or trolamine salicylate 10% or capsaicin 0.1%.  These must be applied only to the area in pain and hand washing is required after application to avoid getting these medications in the eye. Examples of topical pain relievers are IcyHot, Aspercreme and Capzasin-HP.