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Ageing Out


Photo by empty007 [flickr.com/empty007] under CC BY-SA 2.0

There is possibly a euphemism for getting old and all that accompanies it: “ageing out.”

Instead of losing your edge, you can age out of competitive sports and become recreational.

Instead of becoming less productive, you can age out of the workforce with a congratulatory early retirement—“Cheers, old chum. You’ve made [room for cheap labor]!

Instead of using a bib, you can age out of fine dining.

Or maybe, rather than being euphemistic, “ageing out” just accurately describes the inevitability of life stages. After all, the term is commonly used in youth as well.

Definitely not a euphemism here, but a sign of encouragement, is that many are ageing out of drug use. With the cost of healthcare (related to drug abuse), the economics and morals of legalizing marijuana, and the overuse of opioids, drug use remains headline material.

In response to current issues, there are several ideas and policies to curb the use of illegal drugs and the abuse of prescription drugs. However, present policies appear to be handicapped, as evidenced by the ongoing attention to the consequences of new cases of drug use.

To balance concerns about the impact of drug use on personal health and the overall economy, there is an optimistic view that many people simply age out of drugs. So, theoretically, no long-term treatment is required (for those that “age out”). This view is evidenced by population studies and surveys. The ageing-out theory is that life stages and changing circumstances eventually preclude the desire for drug use.

There are two issues here. One is that there is still a segment of the population that does not age out of drug use—mostly the impoverished and uneducated. The other is that, [click to continue…]


Chinese Herbal Pesticides

Chinese herbs

Photo by Pam Link [flickr.com/pamelalink] under CC BY-NC 2.0

There is valid concern over the level of pesticides found in herbs from China, and commonly used in Chinese medicine. This concern is barely being addressed by China, e.g. through agricultural regulation. The lack in this type of government oversight is what continues to aide China’s rapid growth, even though their economic expansion has recently slowed.

However, there is a system for self-regulation within the Chinese medicine community. Firstly, there are a growing number of small-scale farms outside of mainland China—where consumer protection and environmental stewardship is greater—that are focusing on the cultivation of Chinese herbs. This includes within the U.S.

Secondly, for herbs that do come from China, several manufacturers and distributors offer Certificates of Analysis (CoA’s) for any batch of herbs, upon request. These certificates testify [click to continue…]