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June 2009



  • Kid’s Corner -

    Flag Day and The Pledge of Allegiance

  • Mom’s Corner -

    Vision Awareness

  • Dad’s Corner -

    Honoring Your Father

  • Planet Earth -

    Geothermal Energy for Your Home

  • News -                                                                                                        

    Sunburn and Sunscreens

     Welcome to the Doc Grubb newsletter for June 2009. School is out (or will be sometime during the month), and June is filled with the promise of summer fun, family togetherness, vacations, outdoor picnics, and leisure! It's not too hot yet in most parts of the country, and warm, sunny temperatures just beg for twilight strolls, swimming, sleepovers, and picnics. Jump on in and relish the endless array of activities.

We also celebrate Father’s Day and Flag Day in June.

Father's Day is celebrated on the 3rd Sunday in June in many parts of the world. Sonora Smart Dodd, who lived in Spokane, Washington, thought of the idea for Father's Day while listening to a Mother's Day sermon in 1909. Mrs. Doss’s father was a single parent after her mother died and she wanted her father to know how special he was to her because of all the sacrifices he had made to raise her. She thought of him as a courageous, selfless, and loving man. Because her father was born in June she chose to hold the first Father's Day celebration in Spokane, Washington on the 19th of June, 1910. President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed the third Sunday in June as Father's Day in 1924. President Nixon, in 1972, established a permanent national observance of Father's Day to be held on the third Sunday of June.

Although it has fallen out of style, many people use to wear roses for Father's Day: red for a living father and white if the father has died.

Flag Day is a day when all Americans celebrate the flag by showing respect for the flag and its makers and designers. Flag Day really started in 1885, when B.J. Cigrand, a Wisconsin schoolteacher, invited his students to celebrate Flag Birthday, to mark the anniversary of the adoption of the Stars and Stripes as the United States flag. President Woodrow Wilson in 1916 declared June 14 as Flag Day -- a day when the entire nation would display and honor the flag. The date has not been without controversy because some people thought that the day was too close to Memorial Day and Independence Day to have another holiday. Since I’ve worked for the Government for many years I have LOVED having another holiday.

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Whenever I think about the flag I also think about how I used to say the Pledge of Allegiance in elementary, over 50 years ago. I bet that a lot of you reading this newsletter said or may still say the Pledge of Allegiance in school or at a ball game. You should recite the pledge by standing at attention facing the flag with the right hand over the heart.

The Pledge of Allegiance was written in 1892 by Francis Bellamy  a Baptist minister. It was first published as part of the National Public-School Celebration of the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus's discovery of America. The pledge was supposed to be quick and to the point. Bellamy designed it to be said in only 15 seconds! The Pledge was first used in public schools on October 12, 1892 during Columbus Day observances. Bellamy thought that involving the children across the country by having one pledge for all would build national solidarity.

If you don’t know the Pledge of Allegiance, it goes:

“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands: one Nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.”

Here is The Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish and French.

“Yo prometo lealtad a la bandera de los estados Unidos de America, y a la Republica que representa, una Nacion bajo Dios, entera, con libertad y justicia para todos."

"J´engage ma fidelité au drapeau des États-Unis d´Amérique et à la République qu'il répresente, une nation sous Dieu, indivisible, avec liberté et justice pour tous."

Some definitions of the words in the Pledge of Allegience follow (my wife found this part “ahhing and striking” as the words still invoke the same feelings as they did when they were first used):

  • All - everyone
  • Allegiance – my love and my devotion
  • Flag – a piece of cloth that has different shapes and colors on it
  • I – me: an individual; a committee of one
  • Indivisible – incapable of being divided
  • Freedom – the right of power to live one’s own life, without threats, fear or some sort of retaliation.
  • Justice – fair treatment
  • Liberty - freedom
  • Pledge of Allegiance – a promise that people make to the United States
  • Pledge – dedicate all of my worldly goods to give without self-pity
  • Republic – a state in which sovereign power is invested in representatives chosen by the people to govern
  • States – individual communities that have untied into fifty great
  • Support – to believe in or help something
  • Symbol – an object that represents something else
  • United – we have all come together

 Did you know that each color of the American Flag has a special meaning?

The blue stands for justice  (be fair)

The white stands for purity (be clean in your mind and body)

The red stands for courage (don’t be afraid)

The American flag has fifty stars, one for each state in the United States. The thirteen stripes stand for the first thirteen colonies.

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June is “Child Vision Awareness Month” which reminds us the importance of regular eye examinations for our children. Poor eye health can have a significant impact on a child's learning, social and academic development and lead to permanent visual problems in later life so it is vital for parents to have your child tested if you suspect they have a vision problem. A 2007 report stated that 1 in 20 6-7 year olds has a problem with their eyes that should be treated and by the time they are 12-13 year old, one in ten children have an eye problem.

Signs of Eye Problems

It's quite possible that your child won't cry or even mention they have an eye problem because they think that what he is experiencing is nothing out of the ordinary. You should call your child's pediatrician and arrange for a basic eye examination if you observe any of the following symptoms:

  • frequent eye rubbing
  • squinting or frowning when trying to focus on something like television or the blackboard in school
  • blinking with unusual frequency
  • tilting or turning the head to see better as a regular practice
  • stumbling over small objects
  • having problems seeing objects clearly in dim light
  • complaining of frequent headaches
  • reddish or watery eyes
  • any accident that might have caused injury to the eye, including contact with an aerosol spray, or impact from a blunt or sharp object

If necessary your pediatrician can then send to them an optometrist for a full test. A full eye test conducted by an optometrist is a comprehensive eye health check up which will detect any defects in vision and will test a child's binocular vision, eye movement and check for specific eye problems such as amblyopia (lazy eye) or strabismus (squint). They will also check for signs of abnormality, disease or injury and symptoms of general health conditions.

       Eye problems affect sports, reading, learning and self-esteem. Children with "defective visual pathways may be confused by classroom lessons. So they get bored. They get frustrated. So you get a misdiagnosis: `He has attention deficit disorder' or `He's a problem child.' So you begin to set up this child at an early age for failure.''

                                         DID YOU KNOW?

The Snellen eye test -- the chart commonly used in schools and doctor's offices -- "only measures how clearly a child sees letters at 20 feet away. It doesn't tell you whether the eyes work together to read material at 12 inches away.'' Checking for short distant visual problems requires a more comprehensive vision exam, one that few children younger than 5 get even though vision disorders are the leading handicapping condition in childhood.

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In 1966, President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation declaring the 3rd Sunday of June as Father's Day. President Richard Nixon signed it into law as a national holiday in 1972. President George W. Bush said in his 2003 Father's Day Proclamation:

"Fatherhood is one of life's most challenging yet fulfilling endeavors. On Father's Day, we honor America's fathers and express our appreciation for all they do to help build a strong foundation for our children and our Nation. We also reaffirm our commitment to supporting fathers and encouraging responsible fatherhood in our society.

Fathers have indispensable roles to play in the lives of their children: provider, protector, nurturer, teacher, and friend. Every caring father unconditionally loves his sons and daughters and strives for the best for his children in the future. In seeking to give their children the opportunity to succeed, fathers offer needed strength, guidance, and discipline.

Fathers teach their children many basic things in life: how to read a book, throw a ball, tie a necktie, ride a bike, or drive a car. More importantly, they also help instill time-honored values in their children, such as hard work, respect, honesty, and good citizenship. Through their words, actions, and sacrifices, fathers play an important role in shaping the characters of their sons and daughters."


This Father’s Day give your father the ultimate gift: your time, the one thing you can’t get more of. Present him with a gift certificate announcing the plan: taking him out for dinner (he’ll pay if you can’t) and a ball game, a day at the beach, a camping trip or simply an afternoon of side-by-side digging in the garden. It doesn’t have to cost a lot.  Your being there with him is the most important thing. When I go out with my son it’s usually his decision where he wants to go and what to do. For example, he and I recently went to an Indian restaurant that he had looked up on the internet. For this Father’s Day, maybe it will be MY choice.


Do You Ever Wonder About How Father’s Day Compares to Mother’s Day?

  • According to Hallmark Consumer Research, Americans sent 49 million more Mother's Day cards than Father's Day Cards in 2004. As a top card-giving holiday, Father's Day traditionally ranks 4th, behind Mother's Day in 3rd place.
  •  According to an AT&T press release, calling volume for Father's Day falls beneath both Mother's Day and Christmas. And where does Father's Day rank #1? It's the heaviest day for collect calling.

 Nearly 40% of respondents in a Restaurants USA study reported eating out on Mother's Day. Less than 25% of respondents reported doing the same on Father's Day

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My wife, the designer, gave me the most input for the layout and the cover of my latest book “Solving the Weight Loss Puzzle.” She works with client for designing both the interior and exterior of the home so it flows. She is continually being asked by her clients “how can I make my house MORE GREEN for heating and cooling.”


Instead of relying on oil, my wife is very interested in GEOTHERMAL ENERGY, a renewable, environmentally friendly energy source that comes from the earth’s resources. The concept for geothermal energy is pretty simple. The temperature under the earth’s surface is always about 55 degrees. A contractor can either lay pipes about eight feet deep under the surface over an area of land, or drill a vertical shaft like a well and circulate water through the tubes. The geothermal heat pumps circulate a carrier fluid (usually a water/anti-freeze mix) through the pipes buried in the ground. As the fluid circulates underground it absorbs heat from the ground and, on its return, the now warmer fluid passes through the heat pump which uses electricity to extract the heart from the fluid. The re-chilled fluid is sent back through the ground thus completing the cycle. The heat extracted, and the heat generated by the heat pump is used to heat the house. If you change the direction of heat flow, you can use the same system to cool the house in the summer months. The heat is exhausted into the cool soil (or groundwater, or pond) rather than just putting it out into the outside air like your home air conditioner. As a result, the heat is dispersed over a greater area with a higher efficiency, and a lower energy cost.


Although a geothermal system may cost more than the traditional heat pump, in the long run you can save a significant amount of money. With incentives from local power companies, state and local governments and federal stimulus dollars, geothermal energy is becoming much more affordable. For example, President Obama just signed a tax credit into law that provides a 30% discount to those looking into alternative energy sources. Using geothermal energy can cut your fuel costs by 50% to 70% and will pay for itself WITHIN FIVE YEARS! Also, using geothermal energy in a typical 3,000 square foot house will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 5 tons per year. Geothermal systems also save money because they require much less maintenance. They are highly reliable and last for decades and can add considerably to the resale value of your home. Some utility companies even offer special, lower winger rate for geothermal customer, which means even more savings.



  • The heat pump was invented by Lord Kelvin in 1852, and the idea of using it to draw heat from the ground was patented in Switzerland in 1912
  • The first commercial geothermal heat pump heated the Commonwealth Building in Portland Oregon in 1946
  • The technology for geothermal heating became popular in Sweden as a result of the 1973 oil crisis, and it’s use has been growing slowly in world wide acceptance since then
We’ll talk much more about other “Going Green” systems in future issues of this newsletter.

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Skin cancer is one of the most preventable types of cancer, but it is also one of the most common. The majority of skin cancer cases are caused by being in the sun too much. Over the years, there have been numerous warnings put out trying to tell you about the damage sun can do to your body. Try and stay out of the sun when it is at its peak, and to always wear sunscreen with a rating of SPF-30 or higher.

The amount of sun you get adds up over your life, so that sunburn you and your family get now may cause big problems for your skin when you get older. That’s why it is so important to avoid overexposure to the sun now!  Besides the risk of skin cancer you don’t want to end up looking like a walking alligator skin bag.

Know how your skin reacts to sun exposure and plan accordingly. Remember genetics from school? If you burn easily, it’s probable that your children will too. Don’t try to get a tan the first day. If you start to turn pink after 30 minutes in the summer sun, then spending only about five to ten minutes in the sun (in a bathing suit) should generate plenty of vitamin D. After that, apply sunscreen, cover up or seek shade.


What are the risk factors for skin cancer?

  • Having fair skin, red or blond hair
  • Having light-colored eyes
  • Sunburning easily
  • Having many moles, freckles or birthmarks
  • Working or playing outside
  • Being in the sun a lot as a child
  • Having had a serious sunburn
  • Having family members with skin cancer
  • Tanning in the sun or with a sunlamp

Why is the sun so bad for my skin?

Being in the sun often over time, even if you don't burn, can lead to skin cancer. A tan is the body's desperate attempt to protect itself from the sun's harmful rays. That’s why people who live in the tropical countries all have naturally darker colored skin to protect them from the constant sunshine. Beside skin cancer, the sun's rays, which include ultraviolet A and ultraviolet B rays (UVA and UVB rays) damages the connecting fibers in your skin which leads to early wrinkles and other skin problems.

Are tanning booths safer?

No. Tanning booths use ultraviolet rays. Makers of the booths may claim that they use "harmless" UVA rays. But both UVA and UVB rays cause skin damage. While UVA rays take longer than UVB rays to damage the skin, they go deeper into the skin than UVB rays which may lead to even more serious skin and medical conditions.

Where is skin cancer most likely to occur?

Most skin cancers occur on parts of the body that are repeatedly exposed to the sun. These areas include the head and face, neck, tips of the ears, hands, forearms, shoulders, back, chests of men, and the back and lower legs of women. My uncle died from skin cancer. He worked outdoors for the railroad all of his life and then he developed skin cancer which spread throughout his body and eventually killed him. Skin cancer is VERY aggressive so take it seriously.

How can I prevent skin cancer?

Avoid being in the sun or using sunlamps. If you're going to be in the sun for any length of time, wear clothes made from tight-woven cloth so the sun's rays can't get through to your skin, and stay in the shade when you can. Wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect your face, neck and ears. I never go out in the sun for my daily walk/run without wearing a baseball cap and shirt.

Remember that clouds and water won't protect you--60% to 80% of the sun's rays can get through clouds and can reach swimmers at least one foot below the surface of the water. The sun's rays can also reflect off of water, snow and white sand. So, swim team members, apply that sunscreen and REAPPLY often, way before you go into the water. It takes about 30 minutes for the sunscreen to soak into the lower skin layers and really protect you.


Should I use sunscreen?

Many sunscreens offer no protection from UVS rays, the longer ones, which are responsible for skin damage and aging. Most sunscreens only block UVB rays, the short ones, which are the rays that stimulate Vitamin D production by the skin. It’s important to remember that all sunscreens are not the same. They offer different levels of protection (look at the SPF (sun protection factor) rating on the bottle) and some sunscreen ingredients such as benzophenone can cause skin irritation such as burning, stinging or a rash. But the main danger of sunscreens is that people feel protected and spend m ore time in strong sunlight because they are suing a sunscreen, thereby increasing their skin cancer risk. So remember, apply that sunscreen and REAPPLY often, way before you go into the water.

Natural Remedies for Sunburn

  • Aloe: The inner gel of the aloe Vera leaf has been shown to speed the healing of sunburns.
  • Cucumber: slice open a cucumber and wipe it directly onto your skin. You can even eat the slice after you wipe it on your skin.
  • Vitamin E. This nutrient is popular for anti-sunburn activity. A regular dose of vitamin E decreases the inflammation you can get from sunburn. Good food sources of vitamin E include whole grains such as wheat germ, vegetable oils--especially sunflower and soybean oil--and nuts.

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Our free newsletter “The Worm’s Eye View” is uploaded to the computer each month. Each issue includes valuable information for all members of the family as well as the inclusion of the most up-to-date information concerning medical research and treatments.

As a subscriber you will be sent announcements of my new books, CD, and seminars at reduced prices and fees. Sign-up now.

You should read my latest book, “Solving the Weight Loss Puzzle.” Please go to the order page and read part of the first chapter. You will learn a lot from this book why everyone has gained weight and the Three Secrets to normalize your weight.


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