Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

Homemade Colon Cleanse

Homemade Colon Cleanse with 3 Juices

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Many people suffer from chronic constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, leaky gut and other issues with the digestive system. Because the colon has an important job of eliminating waste, it’s critical that you keep it running smoothly.

Fortunately, there are things you can do to help alleviate discomfort associated with toxins and digestion issues in the body, such as a homemade colon cleanse. I have shared details about why a colon cleanse is important, but what’s great is that you don’t need to see a doctor about it — and can make your own colon cleanser right at home.

A homemade colon cleanse can help flush out some of the toxins in your body that could be contributing to your discomfort and also offer natural relief from constipation. Just plan a day when you do not need to leave home so that you are able to adjust to the colon cleansing changes in your body and the elimination of waste as you begin the detox and internal cleansing process.


Apple, Sea Salt, Ginger and Lemon Colon Cleanse

Let’s get started making this great homemade colon cleanse. You will need a tall glass and a spoon. To start, place 3.5 ounces of purified water in a pan. You want to warm the water, not boil it, so that you can drink the water at a safe temperature.

Once it is warm, pour it into your glass. Then add the sea salt, often part of a salt water flush, and stir. The sea salt will help release toxins, pushing waste through the body and ultimately improving digestion.

Now, add the apple juice, ginger juice and fresh lemon juice. Stir. Where do you think an apple a day keeps the doctor away came from? Well, maybe it is not specific to the colon but it did come from the idea that whole foods, such as the nutrition-rich apple, brings good health and a healthy colon definitely yields good health. In fact, a study shows that those who ate an apple a day had less visits to the doctor and fewer prescription medications.

Ginger is great because it reduces bloating while stimulating the colon, keeping it free from wastes and harmful toxins. And let’s not forget about the amazing lemon! Lemon juice aids in digestion, detoxification and is high in vitamin C, making it a great antioxidant .

How to Do the Cleanse

Drink this first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. Then have this mixture again just before a light lunch, preferably of steamed vegetables and baked salmon, and again mid-afternoon.

Have 6–8 glasses of room temperature water throughout the day. It may be best to slow down the consumption of liquids after 5 p.m. so that you are not awakened in the night, with having to go to the bathroom.

Risks 

Performing this type of colon cleanse should not present any problems; however, it is always good to check with your doctor if you are pregnant, have a disease, suffer from allergies or are taking any prescriptions medications prior to any new activity.


Homemade Colon Cleanse with 3 Juices

Total Time: 5 minutes
Serves: 1 serving

INGREDIENTS:

  • ½ cup 100 percent pure organic apple juice ( juice the apple yourself)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ginger juice
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ cup warm purified water

Directions:

  1. Start with a tall glass and a spoon.
  2. Place 3.5 ounces of purified water in a pan. You want to warm the water, not boil it, so that you can drink the water at a safe temperature.
  3. Once it is warm, pour it into your glass. Then add the sea salt and stir.
  4. Add the apple juice, ginger juice and fresh lemon juice. Stir.
  5. Drink first thing in the morning on an empty stomach. Then have this mixture again just before a light lunch, and again mid-afternoon.

 

-People Start to Heal The Moment They Are Heard-
Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth

WordPress:  https://healthandwellnessassociates.co/

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Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

Turmeric Face Mask for Glowing Skin

Turmeric Face Mask for Glowing Skin

 

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One of my favorite DIY skin masks is made using benefit-rich turmeric. Turmeric has been all the craze for dietary reasons but did you also know that it can also help your skin?

Turmeric, traditionally known as Indian saffron because of its deep yellow-orange color, has been used throughout history as a condiment and textile dye. Turmeric also provides amazing healing benefits, not just inside the body, but for your skin. Indian brides have long used turmeric body scrubs and face masks to purify and cleanse their bodies as well as provide a healthy glow by brightening their skin right before their weddings.

Turmeric, a herb used as a main ingredient in curry, can benefit your skin as a home remedy for acne, eczema, psoriasis, dry skin, wrinkles and dark circles under the eyes. It also reduces skin inflammation due to being high in antioxidants and slows down cell damage. As well, it can help reduce pigmentation that evens out skin tone.

What makes turmeric work so well? Turmeric has shown significant anti-inflammatory activity because of its volatile oil and its yellow or orange pigment, which is called curcumin. Curcumin, a phytonutrient, contains anti-inflammatory abilities that have been shown to be comparable to many drugs on the market today, but unlike drugs, curcumin produces no toxicity.

A turmeric face mask is an excellent exfoliating agent and very easy to make right at home with just a few ingredients. However, it is important to note that some people have reported allergic reactions to turmeric after skin exposure. I recommend testing on a small area of your skin first. You may need to use a mild soap with water to remove the yellow stain that may occur. Be careful not to get it on your clothing as well, since it may stain.

With consistency, this turmeric face mask will give you glowing skin!

 

Turmeric Face Mask for Glowing Skin

Total Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 1–2 applications

INGREDIENTS:

  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon organic apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of organic, raw, local honey
  • ½ teaspoon milk or yogurt
  • [optional] 1 drop lemon essential oil or fresh lemon juice for additional skin brightening

Directions:

  1. Wash face and hands first to remove impurities and any make-up.
  2. In a small bowl or jar, mix the turmeric powder with the honey, apple cider vinegar, milk or yogurt and optional lemon oil. Try to get a consistency that will stick to your face. Be careful not to make it too thin as it may drip.
  3. Apply the mask carefully avoiding your eyes.
  4. Allow the mask sit on your face for 15–20 minutes then rinse with warm water.
  5. If you have any leftover, you can cover and leave in the fridge for your next application.
  6. Apply twice a week for best results.

 

-People Start to Heal The Moment They Are Heard-
Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth

WordPress:  https://healthandwellnessassociates.co/

 

Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

Bruise Cream with Arnica & Bilberry

Bruise Cream with Arnica & Bilberry

Bruise cream - Dr. Axe

All of us get bruised every now and then, from the kids taking a fall while playing to simply bumping into that nightstand … ouch! Bruises can be unsightly, and it can seem to take forever to heal bruises. While having a good diet can truly help with the healing process, using natural home remedies can make an even bigger difference.

I want to share my recommendation for the best DIY bruise cream. Try this and watch that bruise fade away.

Let’s start! If you have double boiler, you can use that or simply place a heat safe dish or jar in a pan of hot water. The key here is that we need to soften the skin-healing shea butter so that we can whip it into a nice texture.

Now, place the jojoba oil and shea butter into the double boiler or your heat safe dish and hot water. Bring it to a point where it is getting soft and stir with a whisk so that you continuously blend well.

Once well, blended, transfer to a small mixing bowl.

Next up, add the arnica oil! Arnica has been used since the 1500s to reduce bruising on the body — and it works due to the helenalin, a natural anti-inflammatory agent, within. Not only does it reduce the discoloration of bruising, but it reduces the pain, too, as arnica is commonly used for sore muscles.

We know we can’t go wrong with unrefined coconut oil. Let’s add this to the mixture, while continuing to blend. Coconut oil is great for helping to remove impurities and toxins from the skin and can help heal any damaged or bruised skin.

Have you heard of comfrey oil? It can do wonders for your bruises due to anti-inflammatory properties it contains. The leaf, root and root-like stem are commonly used to make medicine and has been attributed to its high content of allantoin, a substance that promotes new skin cell growth. Add the comfrey oil and continue to stir. I want to note that there are parts of the comfrey plant that are toxic. While comfrey oil should be just fine, make sure you know what you are buying and use in small amounts.

In the next step we will add the bromelain and bilberry extract. Did you know that bromelain comes from the pineapple? It contains proteolytic enzymes that help reduce the inflammation caused by bruises. For your recipe, just empty the capsule into your mixture. And let’s not forget the amazing bilberry! Bilberry, similar to the blueberry, contains antioxidants that will also reduce the swelling and appearance of bruises.

Now, let’s add some essential oils. Blend the frankincense drops right into the mixture. Frankincense has been used since biblical times and helps reduce pain and inflammation caused by bruising.

Once you have blended these ingredients, slowly add the water and continue to blend well. If you like the mixture thick, simply add less water. Try blending just a little at a time to help get the right consistency. Use as much or as little as you want.

Now that you have blended the ingredients to the consistency that you prefer, transfer the mixture into a glass jar. Use two to three times daily until the bruise has diminished. If you notice any irritation upon use, use less frequently or discontinue use.

You now have an amazing chemical-free bruise cream filled with completely natural ingredients! Depending on how warm it is where you live, you may want to keep it in the refrigerator to help maintain the consistency and just set it out for a few minutes prior to use to allow it soften.

I hope your entire family enjoys the benefits of this useful bruise cream!

 

Bruise Cream with Arnica & Bilberry

Total Time: 15 minutes
Serves: 10–12 ounces

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/3 cup jojoba oil
  • 1/4 cup arnica oil
  • 1/4 cup shea butter
  • 1/8 cup coconut oil
  • 3–4 drops comfrey oil
  • 1 500 milligram bromelain capsule
  • 1 teaspoon bilberry extract
  • 10 drops frankincense essential oil
  • 1/8–1/4 cup of purified water (based on desired consistency)

Directions:

  1. Using a double boiler or a heat safe dish or jar in a pan of hot water, add the jojoba oil and shea butter.
  2. Whisk to soften the mixture and blend well.
  3. Once well-blended, transfer to a small mixing bowl.
  4. Add the arnica oil and blend.
  5. Add the coconut oil and blend.
  6. Add the comfrey oil and continue to stir.
  7. Empty the bromelain capsule into the mixture and stir.
  8. Add the bilberry extract and frankincense essential oil. Blend well.
  9. Once you have blended these ingredients, slowly add the water and continue to blend well. Adjust the amount of water to get the consistency you want.
  10. Transfer the mixture into a glass jar.
  11. Keep the container in the refrigerator to help maintain the consistency and just set it out for a few minutes prior to use to allow it soften.

 

 

-People Start to Heal The Moment They Are Heard-
Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth

WordPress:  https://healthandwellnessassociates.co/

Health and Disease, Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

Senator Dies From Sepsis After Flu Shot

Senator Dies From Sepsis, a Common Complication of Infection, Including Influenza

vaccine

There are big gaps in vaccine science research and a troubling lack of information about the overall benefit of annual influenza vaccinations. Mounting evidence suggests the administration of annual flu shots, especially to all infants and children starting in the first year of life, may be causing immune system dysfunction, which could become a significant problem for children as they grow up.

New York State Senator José Peralta — an outspoken proponent of annual flu vaccinations — died November 22, 2018, at the age of 47 from sudden septic shock.   Sepsis is a progressive disease process initiated by an aggressive, dysfunctional immune response to an infection in the bloodstream (which is why it’s sometimes referred to as blood poisoning).

Symptoms of sepsis are often overlooked, even by health professionals, and without prompt treatment, the condition can be deadly, as evidenced in Peralta’s case. He had reportedly complained of “pressure behind his ears and headaches for a week or more,” but had largely dismissed his condition thinking it was just side effects from a recent flu shot.

His condition took a sudden turn for the worse on November 20, when he developed a fever. The following day, he had trouble breathing and became disoriented, at which point he was admitted to Elmhurst Hospital in Queens, New York.

Peralta died that evening, apparently from severe sepsis, a serious complication of infection for individuals whose immune systems are not functioning well, although the nature of Peralta’s infection and the precise cause of his death from sepsis apparently remains unclear.

While Peralta had recently received an influenza vaccination, research shows the flu vaccine often fails to work, and may actually weaken the immune system, making you more vulnerable to secondary infections and/or more severe disease. In one study, influenza vaccination more than quadrupled children’s risk of contracting an upper respiratory infection.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the 2017-2018 seasonal influenza vaccine’s effectiveness against “influenza A and influenza B virus infection associated with medically attended acute respiratory illness” was just 36 percent, meaning there was a 64 percent chance of contracting influenza even if you got the flu shot.

Sepsis is actually one of the leading causes of influenza-related deaths. When your immune system is weak, influenza can weaken it further, allowing a secondary infection to take hold. Sepsis is typically caused by this secondary infection, not the influenza infection itself.

According to researchers, “Severe sepsis is traditionally associated with bacterial diseases … However, viruses are becoming a growing cause of severe sepsis worldwide.” As noted in the video above, some sepsis symptoms also resemble influenza, which can lead to tragedy. The video offers guidelines on how to tell the difference between the two.

Sepsis, without doubt, requires immediate medical attention, whereas most people will successfully recover from influenza within a few days to a week with bedrest and fluids. Just how influenza can lead to sepsis is a somewhat complex affair, described as follows:

“Regardless of the etiologic agent, the inflammatory response is highly interconnected with infection. In the initial response to an infection, severe sepsis is characterized by a proinflammatory state, while a progression to an anti-inflammatory state develops and favors secondary infections …

In the predominant proinflammatory state, Th1 cells activated by microorganisms increase transcription of proinflammatory cytokines such as tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α), interferon-γ (INF-γ), and interleukin-2 (IL-2).

[C]ytokines … released from endothelial cells and subsequently from macrophages can induce lymphocyte activation and infiltration at the sites of infection and will exert direct antiviral effects. Subsequently, with the shift toward an anti-inflammatory state, activated Th2 cells secrete interleukin-4 (IL-4) and interleukin-10 (IL-10).

In certain situations, T cells can become anergic, failing to proliferate and produce cytokines. Type I IFN has a potent anti-influenza virus activity; it induces transcription of several interferon stimulated genes, which in turn restrict viral replication. However, influenza virus developed several mechanisms to evade IFN response …

Viral infections such as the influenza virus can also trigger deregulation of the innate immune system with excessive cytokines release and potential harmful consequences. An abnormal immune response to influenza can lead to endothelial damage … deregulation of coagulation, and the consequent alteration of microvascular permeability, tissue edema and shock.”

Unfortunately, even when properly diagnosed, conventional treatments for sepsis often fail, and most hospitals have yet to embrace the use of intravenous (IV) vitamin C, hydrocortisone and thiamine, which have been shown to reduce sepsis mortality from 40 to a mere 8.5 percent.

Being aware of this treatment (see below), and insisting on it should you or someone you love be at risk, could be a real lifesaver. Knowing what sepsis looks like is also crucial, as early diagnosis and treatment is crucial.

Signs and Symptoms of Sepsis

Common signs and symptoms of sepsis after a flu shot to watch out for include:

  • A high fever
  • Inability to keep fluids down
  • Rapid heartbeat; rapid, shallow breathing and/or shortness of breath
  • Lethargy and/or confusion
  • Slurred speech, often resembling intoxication

Should a few or all of these be present, seek immediate medical attention to rule out sepsis. Also inform the medical staff that you suspect sepsis, as time is of the essence when it comes to treatment. As noted in the video above, hydration is of utmost importance, as damage caused by sepsis begins with fluid loss.

Familiarize Yourself With This Life-Saving Sepsis Protocol

If you or a loved one develops sepsis, whether caused by influenza or some other infection, please remember that a protocol of IV vitamin C with hydrocortisone and thiamine (vitamin B1) can be lifesaving.  Tell your doctor and suggest it be part of the treatment — chances are, he or she might not even be aware of it.

This lifesaving sepsis treatment protocol was developed Dr. Paul Marik, a critical care doctor at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital in East Virginia, and clinical use has proven it to be remarkably effective for the treatment of sepsis, reducing mortality nearly fivefold.

Marik’s retrospective before-after clinical study showed that giving patients IV vitamin C with hydrocortisone and vitamin B1 for two days reduced mortality from 40 percent down to 8.5 percent.

Importantly, the treatment has no side effects and is inexpensive, readily available and simple to administer. There is nothing to lose by trying it unless the person with sepsis has a specific genetic disorder: Use of the sepsis treatment protocol is contraindicated if a person is glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficient (a genetic disorder).  G6PD is an enzyme your red blood cells need to maintain membrane integrity.

High-dose IV vitamin C is a strong pro-oxidant, and giving a pro-oxidant to a G6PD-deficient individual can cause their red blood cells to rupture, which could have disastrous, even fatal, consequences.

Fortunately, G6PC deficiency is relatively uncommon, and can be tested for. People of Mediterranean and African decent are at greater risk of being G6PC deficient. Worldwide, G6PD deficiency is thought to affect 400 million individuals, and in the U.S., an estimated 1 in 10 African-American males have it.

How Does the Treatment Work?

Vitamin C is well-known for its ability to prevent and treat infectious diseases. Previous research has shown it effectively lowers proinflammatory cytokines and C-reactive protein.  Influenza, encephalitis and measles have all been successfully treated with high-dose vitamin C.

To investigate the mechanism of action for sepsis, Marik reached out to John Catravas, Ph.D., a pharmacology researcher at Old Dominion University. At Marik’s request, Catravas performed an independent lab study, which confirmed the effectiveness of the treatment. Catravas cultured endothelial cells from lung tissue and then exposed them to endotoxins found in patients with sepsis.

Interestingly, vitamin C acts like the steroid hydrocortisone, yet when either vitamin C or the steroid were administered in isolation, nothing happened. When administered together, however, the infection was successfully eradicated and the cells were restored to normal.

The addition of thiamine is also important. Not only is thiamine required for metabolism of some of the metabolites of vitamin C, research has also shown many patients with sepsis are vitamin deficient, and when thiamine is given, it reduces the risk of renal failure and mortality.

Studies have also shown thiamine can be helpful for a long list of diseases and disorders, including mitochondrial disorders, heart failure, delirium, thyroid fatigue and Hashimoto’s (a thyroid autoimmune disorder). These and other health effects may help explain why thiamine works so well in conjunction with vitamin C and hydrocortisone for sepsis. In short, the key Marik intuitively stumbled upon was the right combination of ingredients.

Dr. Craig Coopersmith, a leading sepsis researcher at Emory University School of Medicine, is currently conducting a multicenter trial to put Marik’s vitamin C protocol to the test. The projected completion date for this study is May 30, 2019.

Strong Immune Function Minimizes Your Risk of All Sorts of Infections

It’s important to remember that your immune system is your first-line defense against all types of infections, be they bacterial or viral, so the most effective way to make it through flu season unscathed and avoid other infections that may turn deadly is to bolster your immune function.

While conventional health authorities claim getting an annual flu shot is the best way to ward off influenza, the medical literature suggests vitamin D optimization is a very effective strategy in helping to prevent respiratory infections of all kinds during the flu season. A number of studies have confirmed that people with higher vitamin D levels report fewer bouts of cold or flu.

A scientific review published 2017 concluded that people with significant vitamin D deficiency (blood levels below 10 ng/mL) can cut their risk of respiratory infection by 50 percent simply by taking a vitamin D supplement. People with higher vitamin D levels also benefited but to a lesser degree. Overall, they reduced their risk by about 10 percent, which the researchers stated was about equal to the effect of flu vaccines.

Aside from vitamin D, loading up on vitamins B1 and C may also go a long way toward keeping you healthy through the flu season and beyond. (Influenza has also been successfully treated with high-dose vitamin C.

Taking zinc lozenges at the first sign of a cold or flu can also be helpful, as zinc boosts immune function and plays a vital role in activating your body’s T cells (white blood cells tasked with destroying infected cells).

 

** Dont get a flu shot if you have a youngster or infant in the house who has just received their vaccines.

**  Stock up on fresh oranges, not orange juice.

** Please do not start taking B1 or any D vitamin until you talk to a healthcare worker or one of our staff.  These can be very dangerous if taken alone, or incorrectly,

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Dr Richard Jaranson

healthwellnessassociates@gmail.com

Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

Moringa

Health and Wellness Associates

EHS – Telehealth

 

Moringa

 

moringa

Moringa oleifera is a fast-growing tree native to South Asia and now found throughout the tropics. Its leaves have been used as part of traditional medicine for centuries, and the Ayurvedic system of medicine associates it with the cure or prevention of about 300 diseases.

Moringa, sometimes described as the “miracle tree,” “drumstick tree,” or “horseradish tree,” has small, rounded leaves that are packed with an incredible amount of nutrition: protein, calcium, beta carotene, vitamin C, potassium, you name it, moringa’s got it. No wonder it’s been used medicinally (and as a food source) for at least 4,000 years.

The fact that moringa grows rapidly and easily makes it especially appealing for impoverished areas, and it’s been used successfully for boosting nutritional intake in Malawi, Senegal, and India. In these areas, moringa may be the most nutritious food locally available, and it can be harvested year-round.

Personally, I grew a moringa tree for two years and I can attest to the fact that it grows like a weed. For those living in third-world countries, it may very well prove to be a valuable source of nutrition.

However I don’t recommend planting one in your backyard for health purposes as the leaves are very small and it is a timely and exceedingly tedious task to harvest the leaves from the stem to eat them.

The leaves are tiny and difficult to harvest and use, so you’ll likely find, as I did, that growing one is more trouble than it’s worth. That being said, there is no denying that moringa offers an impressive nutritional profile that makes it appealing once it is harvested…

6 Reasons Why Moringa Is Being Hailed as a Superfood

  1. A Rich Nutritional Profile

Moringa leaves are loaded with vitamins, minerals, essential amino acids, and more. One hundred grams of dry moringa leaf contains:

  • 9 times the protein of yogurt
  • 10 times the vitamin A of carrots
  • 15 times the potassium of bananas
  • 17 times the calcium of milk
  • 12 times the vitamin C of oranges
  • 25 times the iron of spinach
  1. Antioxidants Galore

Moringa leaves are rich in antioxidants, including vitamin C, beta-carotene, quercetin, and chlorogenic acid. The latter, chlorogenic acid, has been shown to slow cells’ absorption of sugar and animal studies have found it to lower blood sugar levels. As noted in the Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention:

“The leaves of the Moringa oleifera tree have been reported to demonstrate antioxidant activity due to its high amount of polyphenols.

Moringa oleifera extracts of both mature and tender leaves exhibit strong antioxidant activity against free radicals, prevent oxidative damage to major biomolecules, and give significant protection against oxidative damage.”

Further, in a study of women taking 1.5 teaspoons of moringa leaf powder daily for three months, blood levels of antioxidants increased significantly.

  1. Lower Blood Sugar Levels

Moringa appears to have anti-diabetic effects,7 likely due to beneficial plant compounds contained in the leaves, including isothiocyanates. One study found women who took seven grams of moringa leaf powder daily for three months reduced their fasting blood sugar levels by 13.5 percent.

Separate research revealed that adding 50 grams of moringa leaves to a meal reduced the rise in blood sugar by 21 percent among diabetic patients.

  1. Reduce Inflammation

The isothiocyanates, flavonoids, and phenolic acids in moringa leaves, pods, and seeds also have anti-inflammatory properties. According to the Epoch Times:

“The tree’s strong anti-inflammatory action is traditionally used to treat stomach ulcers. Moringa oil (sometimes called Ben oil) has been shown to protect the liver from chronic inflammation. The oil is unique in that, unlike most vegetable oils, moringa resists rancidity.

This quality makes it a good preservative for foods that can spoil quickly. This sweet oil is used for both frying or in a salad dressing. It is also used topically to treat antifungal problems, arthritis, and is an excellent skin moisturizer.”

  1. Maintain Healthy Cholesterol Levels

Moringa also has cholesterol-lowering properties, and one animal study found its effects were comparable to those of the cholesterol-lowering drug simvastatin.   As noted in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology:

Moringa oleifera is used in Thai traditional medicine as cardiotonic. Recent studies demonstrated its hypocholesterolemic effect.

… In hypercholesterol-fed rabbits, at 12 weeks of treatment, it significantly (P<0.05) lowered the cholesterol levels and reduced the atherosclerotic plaque formation to about 50 and 86%, respectively. These effects were at degrees comparable to those of simvastatin.

 The results indicate that this plant possesses antioxidant, hypolipidaemic, and antiatherosclerotic activities, and has therapeutic potential for the prevention of cardiovascular diseases.”

  1. Protect Against Arsenic Toxicity

The leaves and seeds of moringa may protect against some of the effects of arsenic toxicity, which is especially important in light of news that common staple foods, such as rice, may be contaminated.   Contamination of ground water by arsenic has also become a cause of global public health concern, and one study revealed: 

“Co-administration of M. oleifera [moringa] seed powder (250 and 500 mg/kg, orally) with arsenic significantly increased the activities of SOD [superoxide dismutase], catalase, and GPx with elevation in reduced GSH level in tissues (liver, kidney, and brain).

These changes were accompanied by approximately 57%, 64%, and 17% decrease in blood ROS [reactive oxygen species], liver metallothionein (MT), and lipid peroxidation respectively in animal co-administered with M. oleifera and arsenic.

Another interesting observation has been the reduced uptake of arsenic in soft tissues (55% in blood, 65% in liver, 54% in kidneys, and 34% in brain) following administration of M. oleifera seed powder (particularly at the dose of 500 mg/kg).

It can thus be concluded from the present study that concomitant administration of M. oleifera seed powder with arsenic could significantly protect animals from oxidative stress and in reducing tissue arsenic concentration. Administration of M. oleifera seed powder thus could also be beneficial during chelation therapy…”

Moringa Leaves May Even Purify Water… and More

From a digestive standpoint, moringa is high in fiber that, as the Epoch Times put it, “works like a mop in your intestines… to clean up any of that extra grunge left over from a greasy diet.” Also noteworthy are its isothiocyanates, which have anti-bacterial properties that may help to rid your body of H. pylori, a bacteria implicated in gastritis, ulcers, and gastric cancer. Moringa seeds have even been found to work better for water purification than many of the conventional synthetic materials in use today.

According to Uppsala University:

“A protein in the seeds binds to impurities causing them to aggregate so that the clusters can be separated from the water. The study… published in the journal Colloids and Surfaces A takes a step towards optimization of the water purification process.

Researchers in Uppsala together with colleagues from Lund as well as NamibiaBotswanaFrance, and the USA have studied the microscopic structure of aggregates formed with the protein.

The results show that the clusters of material (flocs) that are produced with the protein are much more tightly packed than those formed with conventional flocculating agents. This is better for water purification as such flocs are more easily separated.”

There is speculation that moringa’s ability to attach itself to harmful materials may also happen in the body, making moringa a potential detoxification tool.

How to Use Moringa

If you have access to a moringa tree, you can use the fresh leaves in your meals; they have a flavor similar to a radish. Toss them like a salad, blend them into smoothies, or steam them like spinach. Another option is to use moringa powder, either in supplement form or added to smoothies, soups, and other foods for extra nutrition. Moringa powder has a distinctive “green” flavor, so you may want to start out slowly when adding it to your meals.

You can also use organic, cold-pressed moringa oil (or ben oil), although it’s expensive (about 15 times more than olive oil.As mentioned, while I don’t necessarily recommend planting a moringa tree in your backyard (a rapid-growing tree can grow to 15 to 30 feet in just a few years), you may want to give the leaves or powder a try if you come across some at your local health food market. As reported by Fox News, this is one plant food that displays not just one or two but numerous potential healing powers:

“Virtually all parts of the plant are used to treat inflammation, infectious disorders, and various problems of the cardiovascular and digestive organs, while improving liver function and enhancing milk flow in nursing mothers. The uses of moringa are well documented in both the Ayurvedic and Unani systems of traditional medicine, among the most ancient healing systems in the world.

Moringa is rich in a variety of health-enhancing compounds, including moringine, moringinine, the potent antioxidants quercetin, kaempferol, rhamnetin, and various polyphenols. The leaves seem to be getting the most market attention, notably for their use in reducing high blood pressure, eliminating water weight, and lowering cholesterol.

Studies show that moringa leaves possess anti-tumor and anti-cancer activities, due in part to a compound called niaziminin. Preliminary experimentation also shows activity against the Epstein-Barr virus. Compounds in the leaf appear to help regulate thyroid function, especially in cases of over-active thyroid. Further research points to anti-viral activity in cases of Herpes simplex 1.”

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Lifestyle, Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

The Nightmare Pill!

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS – Telehealth

 

1 in 6 Women Take This Nightmare Pill While Many Studies Suggest It’s Useless

 

Use of Antidepressants Continue to Rise

wingsandclaws

 

Major depression is one of the most common disorders in the U.S., with 16 million adults reporting at least one major depressive episode in the past year. When you look at all forms of depression, that number goes even higher. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 24 million Americans experience some form of depression, which can interfere with personal and work relationships, reduce work or academic performance and affect physical health.

 

Depression reduces your ability to care for yourself properly and make adequate decisions about your health, including nutrition and sleep. Imbalances in nutrition, weight fluctuations and poor sleep habits may lead to compromised immune function.

 

If ignored, depression can become chronic and can lead to self-harming behaviors such as drug or alcohol abuse6 and even be terminal if the person commits suicide. Up to 70 percent of people who commit suicide are clinically depressed, and 90 percent of people who struggle with suicidal thoughts experience a combination of depression and substance abuse.

 

Antidepressant Use Continues to Rise

According to the latest statistics use of antidepressants in the U.S. rose by 65 percent between 1999 and 2014. As of 2017:

 

  • Nearly 1 in 8 Americans (13 percent) over the age of 12 reported being on antidepressant medication

 

  • 1 in 6 women (16.5 percent) reported antidepressant use compared to 1 in 11 men (9 percent)

 

  • About one-quarter of those who had taken an antidepressant in the past month reported being on them for 10 years or more

 

  • Caucasians were more than three times more likely to use antidepressants than Blacks, Hispanics or Asians (16.5 percent compared to 5.6 percent, 5 percent and 3.3 percent respectively)

 

In Scotland, researchers also warn that antidepressant use among children under the age of 12 has risen dramatically.13 Between 2009 and 2016, use in this age group quadrupled. Use among children under 18 doubled in the same time frame.

 

Research Reveals Antidepressants Are Rarely the Right Answer

Unfortunately, the most widely used remedy for depression is also among the least effective. In addition to a long list of potential side effects (which include worsening depression and suicide), 40 percent of people with major depressive disorder treated with antidepressants do not achieve full remission.16

 

Perhaps more importantly, studies have repeatedly shown antidepressants work no better than placebo for mild to moderate depression, so you’re taking grave risks for a very small chance of benefit. As noted in a 2014 paper on antidepressants and the placebo effect:

 

“Antidepressants are supposed to work by fixing a chemical imbalance, specifically, a lack of serotonin in the brain … But analyses of the published data and the unpublished data that were hidden by drug companies reveals that most (if not all) of the benefits are due to the placebo effect …

 

Analyzing the data we had found, we were not surprised to find a substantial placebo effect on depression. What surprised us was how small the drug effect was. Seventy-five percent of the improvement in the drug group also occurred when people were give dummy pills with no active ingredient in them.

 

The serotonin theory is as close as any theory in the history of science to having been proved wrong. Instead of curing depression, popular antidepressants may induce a biological vulnerability making people more likely to become depressed in the future.”

 

Placebo Effect Accounts for 82 Percent of Drug Response

The author of that 2014 study, Irving Kirsch, is a psychotherapist who has performed a number of analyses on antidepressants. In 2002, his team filed a Freedom of Information Act request to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), asking for the trial data provided by drug companies as part of the drug approval process.

 

The FDA requires drug companies to provide data on all clinical trials they’ve sponsored, including unpublished trials. As it turned out, nearly half of all clinical trials on antidepressants remained unpublished. When both published and unpublished trials were included, 57 percent showed the drug had no clinical benefit over placebo. What’s more, the placebo response actually accounted for 82 PERCENT of the beneficial response to antidepressants!

 

These results were reproduced in a 2010 study using another, even larger set of FDA trial data. According to Kirsch, “Once again, 82 percent of the drug response was duplicated by placebo.” A major benefit of evaluating FDA trial data was that all of the trials used the same primary measure of depression, which made the drug-to-placebo effects very easy to identify and compare.

 

The primary measure of depression used in these studies was the Hamilton depression scale, a 17-item scale with a possible score of 0 to 53 points. The higher your score, the more severe your depression. Importantly, the mean difference between antidepressants and placebo was less than two points (1.8) on this scale, which is considered clinically insignificant.

 

To illustrate just how insignificant of a difference this is, you can score a 6-point difference simply by changing sleep patterns without any reported change in other depressive symptoms.

 

EMFs — A Not Well-Known Cause of Anxiety and Depression

About one year ago Dr. Martin Pall published a review in the Journal of Neuroanatomy showing how microwave radiation from cell phones, Wi-Fi routers and computers and tablets not in airplane mode is clearly associated with many neuropsychiatric disorders. I recently did an interview with him that will air on September 3. In the meantime, you can view my interview on EMFs that I discussed on my recent trip to visit with Dave Asprey, founder and CEO of Bulletproof.

 

These microwave EMFs increase intracellular calcium through voltage gated calcium channels (VGCCs) and the tissue with the highest density of VGCCs is the brain. Once these VGCCs are stimulated they also cause the release of neurotransmitters and neuroendocrine hormones leading to not only anxiety and depression, but neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and brain cancer.

 

So, if you struggle with anxiety or depression, be sure to limit your exposure to wireless technology. Simple measures include turning your Wi-Fi off at night, not carrying your cellphone on your body and not keeping portable phones, cellphones and other electric devices in your bedroom.

 

Studies have also confirmed the therapeutic effects of spending time in nature.  Ecotherapy has been shown to lower stress, improve mood and significantly reduce symptoms of depression. Outdoor activities could be just about anything, from walking a nature trail to gardening, or simply taking your exercise outdoors.

 

Breath work such as the Buteyko breathing technique also has enormous psychological benefits and can quickly reduce anxiety by increasing the partial pressure of carbon dioxide in your body. These three techniques are a perfect complement to each other, and cost nothing. Simply turn off your electronics, head outside and practice proper breathing.

 

America Struggles With Notable Decline in Mental Health 

While prescriptions for psychiatric drugs keep increasing (when you include other drugs beside antidepressants, such as anti-anxiety drugs, nearly 17 percent of American adults are medicated, several parameters show mental health in the U.S. is declining.

 

Suicide rates are at a 30-year high, mental disorders are now the second most common cause of disability, having risen sharply since 1980, and prescription drug abuse and overdose deaths have become a public health emergency. While opioid pain killers are among the most lethal, psychiatric drugs also take their toll. In 2013, anti-anxiety benzodiazepine drugs accounted for nearly one-third of prescription overdose deaths.

 

All of these statistics suggest that far from being helpful, antidepressants and other psychiatric drugs are making the situation worse. Sure, these drugs may be helpful for a small minority of people with very severe mental health problems, such as schizophrenia, but clearly, the vast majority of people using these drugs do not suffer from severe psychiatric illness.

 

Most are struggling with sadness, grief, anxiety, “the blues” and depression, which are in many ways part of your body’s communication system, revealing nutritional or sunlight deficiencies and/or spiritual disconnect, for example. The underlying reasons for these kinds of troubles are manifold, but you can be sure that, whatever the cause, an antidepressant will not correct it.

 

Women also need to be mindful of the fact that use of antidepressants during pregnancy can significantly increase your chances of having a child with autism. One study found antidepressant use during the second or third trimester was associated with an 87 percent increased risk of autism. The use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors was associated with double the risk of autism in the child, while the use of two or more antidepressants increased the risk more than fourfold.

 

Which Treatments Actually Work?

If you’re at all interested in following science-based recommendations, you’d place antidepressants at the very bottom of your list of treatment candidates. Far more effective treatments for depression include:

 

  • Exercise — A number of studies have shown exercise outperforms drug treatment. Exercise helps create new GABA-producing neurons that help induce a natural state of calm, and boosts serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine, which helps buffer the effects of stress.

 

Studies have shown there is a strong correlation between improved mood and aerobic capacity, but even gentle forms of exercise can be effective. Yoga, for example, has received particular attention in a number of studies. A study published this spring found 90-minute yoga sessions three times a week reduced symptom of major depression by at least 50 percent.30

 

  • Nutritional intervention — Keeping inflammation in check is an important part of any effective treatment plan. If you’re gluten sensitive, you will need to remove all gluten from your diet. A food sensitivity test can help ascertain this. Reducing lectins may also be a good idea. As a general guideline, eating a whole food diet as described in my optimal nutrition plan can go a long way toward lowering your inflammation level. Certain nutritional deficiencies are also notorious contributors to depression, especially:

 

◦ Omega-3 fats. I recommend getting an omega-3 index test to make sure you’re getting enough. Ideally, you want your omega-3 index to be 8 percent or higher.

 

◦ B vitamins (including B1, B2, B3, B6, B8 and B12). Low dietary folate can raise your risk by as much as 300 percent. One of the most recent studies showing the importance of vitamin deficiencies in depression involved suicidal teens. Most turned out to be deficient in cerebral folate and all of them showed improvement after treatment with folinic acid.

 

  • Vitamin D — Studies have shown vitamin D deficiency can predispose you to depression and that depression can respond favorably to optimizing your vitamin D stores, ideally by getting sensible sun exposure.In one such study, people with a vitamin D level below 20 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL) had an 85 percent increased risk of depression compared to those with a level greater than 30 ng/mL.

 

A double-blind randomized trial38 published in 2008 concluded that supplementing with high doses of vitamin D “seems to ameliorate [depression] symptoms indicating a possible causal relationship. “Recent research39 also claims that low vitamin D levels appear to be associated with suicide attempts. For optimal health, make sure your vitamin D level is between 40 and 60 ng/mL year-round. Ideally, get a vitamin D test at least twice a year to monitor your level.

 

  • Probiotics — Keeping your gut microbiome healthy also has a significant effect on your moods, emotions and brain. You can read more in my previous article, “Mental Health May Depend on the Health of Your Gut Flora.”

 

  • Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) — EFT is a form of psychological acupressure that has been shown to be quite effective for depression and anxiety.40,41,42,43 For serious or complex issues, seek out a qualified health care professional that is trained in EFT44 to guide you through the process. That said, for most of you with depression symptoms, this is a technique you can learn to do effectively on your own.

 

One of my new favorites.  My mom passed away unexpectedly in July and I am very grateful she did not have cancer or struggles with any abuses from the conventional health system that many of our readers do. However, losing my mother was a major challenge in grief management for me.

 

I realize grief is not depression but the book “Letting Go: The Pathway of Surrender”45 by Dr. David Hawkins, was one of the best books I have read this year and helped teach me the useful tool of how to free yourself of painful emotions. I have read many of Hawkins’ previous books but this was his last one as he also recently passed.

 

Other Helpful Treatment Strategies

Here are several other strategies that can help improve your mental health:46

 

Clean up your sleep hygiene

 

Make sure you’re getting enough high-quality sleep, as sleep is essential for optimal mood and mental health. A fitness tracker that tracks your sleep can be a useful tool. The inability to fall asleep and stay asleep can be due to elevated cortisol levels, so if you have trouble sleeping, you may want to get your saliva cortisol level tested with an Adrenal Stress Index test.

 

If you’re already taking hormones, you can try applying a small dab of progesterone cream on your neck or face when you awaken during the night and can’t call back to sleep. Another alternative is to take adaptogens, herbal products that help lower cortisol and adjust your body to stress. There are also other excellent herbs and amino acids that help you to fall asleep and stay asleep. Meditation can also help.

Optimize your gut health

 

A number of studies have confirmed gastrointestinal inflammation can play a critical role in the development of depression. Optimizing your gut microbiome will also help regulate a number of neurotransmitters and mood-related hormones, including GABA and corticosterone, resulting in reduced anxiety and depression-related behavior.

 

To nourish your gut microbiome, be sure to eat plenty of fresh vegetables and traditionally fermented foods. Healthy choices include fermented vegetables, lassi, kefir and natto. If you do not eat fermented foods on a regular basis, taking a high-quality probiotic supplement is recommended.

 

Also remember to severely limit sugars, especially fructose, as well as grains, to rebalance your gut flora. As a standard recommendation, I suggest limiting your daily fructose consumption from all sources to 25 grams per day or less.

Visualization

 

Visualization and guided imagery have been used for decades by elite athletes prior to an event, successful business people and cancer patients — all to achieve better results through convincing your mind you have already achieved successful results. Similar success has been found in people with depression.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

 

CBT has been used successfully to treat depression. This therapy assumes mood is related to the pattern of thought. CBT attempts to change mood and reverse depression by directing your thought patterns.

Make sure your cholesterol levels aren’t too low for optimal mental health

 

You may also want to check your cholesterol to make sure it’s not too low. Low cholesterol is linked to dramatically increased rates of suicide, as well as aggression toward others. This increased expression of violence toward self and others may be due to the fact that low membrane cholesterol decreases the number of serotonin receptors in the brain, which are approximately 30 percent cholesterol by weight.

 

Lower serum cholesterol concentrations therefore may contribute to decreasing brain serotonin, which not only contributes to suicidal-associated depression, but prevents the suppression of aggressive behavior and violence toward self and others.

Helpful supplements

 

A number of herbs and supplements can be used in lieu of drugs to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. These include:

 

  • St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum). This medicinal plant has a long historical use for depression, and is thought to work similarly to antidepressants, raising brain chemicals associated with mood such as serotonin, dopamine and noradrenaline.

 

  • S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe). SAMe is an amino acid derivative that occurs naturally in all cells. It plays a role in many biological reactions by transferring its methyl group to DNA, proteins, phospholipids and biogenic amines. Several scientific studies indicate that SAMe may be useful in the treatment of depression.

 

  • 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP). 5-HTP is another natural alternative to traditional antidepressants. When your body sets about manufacturing serotonin, it first makes 5-HTP. Taking 5-HTP as a supplement may raise serotonin levels. Evidence suggests 5-HTP outperforms a placebo when it comes to alleviating depression, which is more than can be said about antidepressants.

 

  • XingPiJieYu. This Chinese herb, available from doctors of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), has been found to reduce the effects of “chronic and unpredictable stress,” thereby lowering your risk of depression.

Guidelines for Safe Drug Withdrawal

If you’re currently on an antidepressant and want to get off it, ideally, you’ll want to have the cooperation of your prescribing physician. It would also be wise to do some homework on how to best proceed. Dr. Joseph Glenmullen from Harvard has written a helpful book on how to withdraw called “The Antidepressant Solution: A Step-by-Step Guide to Overcoming Antidepressant Withdrawal, Dependence, and Addiction.”

 

You can also turn to an organization with a referral list of doctors who practice more biologically or naturally, such as the American College for Advancement in Medicine at http://www.ACAM.org. A holistic psychiatrist will have a number of treatment options in their tool box that conventional doctors do not, and will typically be familiar with nutritional supplementation.

 

Once you have the cooperation of your prescribing physician, start lowering the dosage of the medication you’re taking. There are protocols for gradually reducing the dose that your doctor should be well aware of. At the same time, it may be wise to add in a multivitamin and/or other nutritional supplements or herbs. Again, your best bet would be to work with a holistic psychiatrist who is well-versed in the use of nutritional support.

 

If you have a friend or family member who struggles with depression, perhaps one of the most helpful things you can do is to help guide them toward healthier eating and lifestyle habits, as making changes can be particularly difficult when you’re feeling blue — or worse, suicidal. Encourage them to unplug and meet you outside for walks. We should not underestimate the power of human connection, and the power of connection with nature. Both, I believe, are essential for mental health and emotional stability.

 

If you are feeling desperate or have any thoughts of suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, a toll-free number: 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or call 911, or simply go to your nearest hospital emergency department. You cannot make long-term plans for lifestyle changes when you are in the middle of a crisis.

 

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Foods, Health and Disease, Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

Foods to Avoid with Hypothyroid Condition

Health and Wellness Associates
EHS Telehealth Associates

 

hypo

Hypothyroidism can be a tricky condition to manage, what you eat can interfere with your treatment. Some nutrients heavily influence the function of the thyroid gland, and certain foods can inhibit your body’s ability to absorb the replacement hormones you may take as part of your thyroid treatment

  • Having a thyroid condition is no picnic, but you’re not alone with this health issue. According to the American Thyroid Association, more than 12 percent of the population may end up dealing with a thyroid condition at some point in their lives. And thyroid issues can be sneaky: Of the nearly 20 million Americans living with the disease, as many as 60 percent don’t even realize they have it.

    As with many health conditions, some factors are out of your control, including your family history and the environment around you. But diet also plays a prominent role — and since you’re the one in charge of your plate, you can decide which thyroid-friendly foods to choose.

    Some items on this list may strike you as odd, like fiber and coffee, because for many other diets they’re considered ‘healthy’ or ‘safe’ picks. You can still enjoy these foods groups, but moderating your intake is a good idea when managing hypothyroidism.

    But many of the others to watch out for already fall into the no-no category as part of a smart diet, so skipping them, or at least cutting way back, is definitely a no-brainer. These include fried fast-food meals, salty processed foods, sugary treats, such as pastry, cake, cookies, and ice cream, and excessive alcohol.

    So while there’s no one cure for everyone, you do have to make sure that you well, eating smart can help you feel better despite the condition. Here are nine foods to limit or avoid as you manage hypothyroidism:

  • Foods With Soy, Including Edamame, Tofu, and Miso

    There’s long been concern over the potential negative effects that certain compounds in soy — called isoflavones — may have on the thyroid. Some researchers believe that too much soy may increase a person’s risk for hypothyroidism. But others theorize that only those with both hypothyroidism and an iodine deficiency should watch their intake. In North America, all Soy products must be avoided because you will develop an excess estrogen level that works against thyroid medication.

    So there are no specific dietary guidelines, but some research does suggest that consumption of soy may interfere with your ability to absorb thyroid medication. For that reason, you may want to wait four hours after eating soy-based foods before taking your regular dose. Check with your doctor to see what’s best for you.

  • Cruciferous Vegetables Like Broccoli and Cauliflower

    Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli and cabbage, are full of fiber and other nutrients, but they may interfere with the production of thyroid hormone if you have an iodine deficiency. So if you do, it’s a good idea to limit your intake of Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, turnips,potatoes and bok choy, because research suggests digesting these vegetables may block the thyroid’s ability to utilize iodine, which is essential for normal thyroid function.

    If you have been diagnosed with both hypothyroidism and iodine deficiency, there are some things you can do to make these vegetables less harmful. Cooking them can reduce the effect that cruciferous vegetables have on the thyroid gland, and limiting your intake of these (cooked) vegetables to 5 ounces a day may help as well, since that amount appears to have no adverse effect on thyroid function.

  • Gluten, Found in Bread, Pasta, and Rice

    Those with hypothyroidism may want to consider minimizing their intake of gluten, a protein found in foods processed from wheat, barley, rye, and other grains, says Ruth Frechman, RDN, a dietitian in the Los Angeles area and a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. And if you have been diagnosed with celiac disease, gluten can irritate the small intestine, and may hamper absorption of thyroid hormone replacement medication.

    An article published in May 2017 in the journal Endocrine Connections noted that hypothyroidism and celiac disease are often present together, and while no research has demonstrated that a gluten-free diet can treat thyroid conditions, you may still want to talk to a doctor about whether it would be worth eliminating gluten, or getting tested for celiac disease.

    If you do choose to eat gluten, which is the wrong choice to  make, be sure to choose whole-grains varieties of bread, pasta, and rice, which are high in fiber and other nutrients and can help improve bowel irregularity, a common symptom of hypothyroidism. Also be sure to take your hypothyroidism medication several hours before or after eating high-fiber foods, to prevent them from interfering with the absorption of your synthetic thyroid hormone.

  • Fatty Foods Such as Butter, Meat, and All Things Fried

    Fats have been found to disrupt the body’s ability to absorb thyroid hormone replacement medicines, says Stephanie Lee, MD, PhD, associate chief of endocrinology, nutrition, and diabetes at Boston Medical Center and an associate professor at the Boston University School of Medicine in Massachusetts.

    Fats may also interfere with the thyroid’s ability to produce hormone as well. Some healthcare professionals recommend that you cut out all fried foods and reduce your intake of fats from sources such as butter, mayonnaise, margarine, and fatty cuts of meat.

  • Sugary Foods Like This Delicious Chocolate Cheesecake

    Hypothyroidism can cause the body’s metabolism to slow down, Frechman says. That means it’s easy to put on pounds if you aren’t careful. “You want to avoid foods with excess amounts of sugar because it’s a lot of calories with no nutrients,” she says. It’s best to reduce the amount of sugar you eat or try to eliminate it completely from your diet.

  • Processed Foods in Packages and the Frozen Aisle

    “Processed foods tend to have a lot of sodium, and people with hypothyroidism should avoid sodium,” Frechman says. Having an underactive thyroid increases a person’s risk for high blood pressure, and too much sodium further increases this risk.

    Read the “Nutrition Facts” label on the packaging of processed foods to find options lowest in sodium. People with an increased risk for high blood pressure should restrict their sodium intake to 1,500 milligrams a day, according to the American Heart Association.

  • Excess Fiber From Beans, Legumes, and Vegetables

    Getting enough fiber is good for you, but too much can complicate your hypothyroidism treatment. The government’s Daily Guidelines for Americans currently recommends that older adults take in 20 to 35 grams of fiber a day. Amounts of dietary fiber from whole grains, vegetables, fruits, beans, corn and legumes that go above that level affect your digestive system and can interfere with absorption of thyroid hormone replacement drugs.

    If you’re on a high-fiber diet, ask your doctor if you need a higher dose of thyroid medication. Your maintenance dose may need to be increased if you aren’t absorbing enough medication.

  • Coffee: Time Your First Cup Carefully in the Morning

    Caffeine has been found to block absorption of thyroid hormone replacement, says Dr. Lee. “People who were taking their thyroid medication with their morning coffee had uncontrollable thyroid levels, and we couldn’t figure it out,” she says. “I now have to be very careful to tell people, ‘Only take your medication with water.'” You should wait at least 30 minutes after taking your medication before having a cup of Joe or tea and soda pop with caffeine.


  • Alcohol Doesn’t Play Well With Your Thyroid

    Alcohol consumption can wreak havoc on both thyroid hormone levels in the body and the ability of the thyroid to produce hormone. Alcohol appears to have a toxic effect on the thyroid gland and suppresses the ability of the body to use thyroid hormone. Ideally, people with hypothyroidism should cut out alcohol completely or drink in careful moderation.

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  • Hints to help  you!
  • Keep a food chart in your wallet as to what you can not eat.
  • Keep a list of what you do eat and have a proper healthcare worker check it over.
  • Take the correct supplements that are suggested for you.
  • Work with someone who can determine the right foods for you.
  • If you have high blood pressure and an irregular heart beat, you need to work with a healthcare provider who can correct this situation.

 

Health and Disease, Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

K2 a MUST to Prevent Cardiac Problems

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Without Vitamin K2, Vitamin D May Actually Encourage Heart Disease

 

Vitamin K2 is thought to reduce coronary calcification, thereby decreasing your risk of cardiovascular disease. However, studies have reported inconsistent results — possibly because of the different effects of vitamin K1 (phylloquinone) and vitamin K2 (menaquinone or MK). Few studies have included both.

 

At least one study, however, has investigated the association of intake of phylloquinone and menaquinone with coronary calcification. The intake of both forms of the vitamin was estimated using a food-frequency questionnaire. It was found that K2 had an effect on coronary calcification, but K1 did not.

 

According to the study:

 

“This study shows that high dietary menaquinone [Ks] intake, but probably not phylloquinone [K1], is associated with reduced coronary calcification. Adequate menaquinone intakes could therefore be important to prevent cardiovascular disease.”

 

 

Vitamin K is an extremely important vitamin to have in your diet; it may very well be the next vitamin D in terms of the numerous health benefits it may provide. But, according to Dr. Cees Vermeer, one of the world’s top researchers in the field of vitamin K, nearly everyone is deficient in vitamin K — just like most are deficient in vitamin D.

 

Most people get enough vitamin K from their diets to maintain adequate blood clotting, but NOT enough to offer protection against health problems like arterial calcification and cardiovascular disease. Yet, as the study above showed, adequate amounts of the right type of vitamin K may offer immense benefits to your heart health, including reducing coronary calcification and thereby decreasing your risk of heart disease.

 

Which Type of Vitamin K May be Best for Your Heart?

Vitamin K comes in two forms — K1 or K2 — and it is important to understand the differences between them.

 

Vitamin K1 (phylloquinone): Found in green vegetables, K1 goes directly to your liver and helps you maintain a healthy blood clotting system. (This is the kind of vitamin K that infants are often given at birth to help prevent a serious bleeding disorder.) It is also vitamin K1 that keeps your own blood vessels from calcifying, and helps your bones retain calcium and develop the right crystalline structure.

Vitamin K2 (menaquinone, MK): Bacteria produce this type of vitamin K. It is present in high quantities in your gut, but unfortunately is not absorbed from there and passes out in your stool. K2 goes straight to vessel walls, bones, and tissues other than your liver. It is present in fermented foods, particularly cheese and the Japanese food natto, which is by far the richest source of K2.

Vitamin K3, or menadione, is a third form that is synthetic and manmade, which I do not recommend. Each type of vitamin K has different roles in your body, and emerging research is showing that vitamin K2, not K1, may be especially important. For instance, research published in Atherosclerosis found that high dietary intake of vitamin K2 is associated with reduced coronary calcification (hardening of the arteries), a result that should also lessen your risk of heart disease.

 

What made this study unique was that it compared dietary intakes of both vitamin K1 and K2, and only K2 showed a benefit. Vitamin K1 was NOT associated with reduced coronary calcification. This is consistent with separate research also showing superior health benefits from vitamin K2, including:

 

The Rotterdam Study, the first study demonstrating the beneficial effect of vitamin K2, showed that people who consume 45 mcg of K2 daily live seven years longer than people getting 12 mcg per day.

The Prospect Study, in which 16,000 people were followed for 10 years. Researchers found that each additional 10 mcg of K2 in the diet results in 9 percent fewer cardiac events, whereas vitamin K1 did not offer a significant heart benefit.

Why Might Vitamin K2 be so Beneficial for Your Heart?

Vitamin K engages in a delicate dance with vitamin D; whereas vitamin D provides improved bone development by helping you absorb calcium, there is new evidence that vitamin K2 directs the calcium to your skeleton, while preventing it from being deposited where you don’t want it — i.e., your organs, joint spaces, and arteries. A large part of arterial plaque consists of calcium deposits (atherosclerosis), hence the term “hardening of the arteries.”

 

Vitamin K2 activates a protein hormone called osteocalcin, produced by osteoblasts, which is needed to bind calcium into the matrix of your bone. Osteocalcin also appears to help prevent calcium from depositing into your arteries. In other words, without the help of vitamin K2, the calcium that your vitamin D so effectively lets in might be working AGAINST you — by building up your coronary arteries rather than your bones.

 

This is why if you take calcium and vitamin D but are deficient in vitamin K, you could be worse off than if you were not taking those supplements at all, as demonstrated by a recent meta-analysis linking calcium supplements to heart attacks.

 

This meta-analysis looked at studies involving people taking calcium in isolation, without complementary nutrients like magnesium, vitamin D and vitamin K, which help keep your body in balance. In the absence of those other important cofactors, calcium CAN have adverse effects, such as building up in coronary arteries and causing heart attacks, which is really what this analysis detected. So if you are going to take calcium, you need to be sure you have balanced it out with vitamin D and vitamin K.

 

Vitamin K2 Helps Produce Heart-Protective Protein MGP

Another route by which vitamin K offers heart-protective benefits is through the Matrix GLA Protein (or MGP), the protein responsible for protecting your blood vessels from calcification. When your body’s soft tissues are damaged, they respond with an inflammatory process that can result in the deposition of calcium into the damaged tissue. When this occurs in your blood vessels, you have the underlying mechanism of coronary artery disease — the buildup of plaque — that can lead you down the path to a heart attack.

 

Vitamin K and vitamin D again work together to increase MGP, which, in healthy arteries, congregates around the elastic fibers of your tunica media (arterial lining), guarding them against calcium crystal formation.

 

According to Professor Cees Vermeer:

 

“The only mechanism for arteries to protect themselves from calcification is via the vitamin K-dependent protein MGP. MPG is the most powerful inhibitor of soft tissue calcification presently known, but non-supplemented healthy adults are insufficient in vitamin K to a level that 30 percent of their MGP is synthesized in an inactive form. So, protection against cardiovascular calcification is only 70 percent in the young, healthy population, and this figure decreases at increasing age.”

 

Four More Reasons to Make Sure Your Diet Includes Vitamin K2

Vitamin K not only helps to prevent hardening of your arteries, which is a common factor in coronary artery disease and heart failure, it also offers several other important benefits to your health.

 

Fight Cancer …

 

Vitamin K has been found beneficial in the fight against non-Hodgkin lymphoma, liver, colon, stomach, prostate, nasopharynx, and oral cancers, and some studies have even suggested vitamin K may be used therapeutically in the treatment of patients with lung cancer, liver cancer, and leukemia.     Improve Bone Density …

 

Vitamin K is one of the most important nutritional interventions for improving bone density. It serves as the biological “glue” that helps plug the calcium into your bone matrix.

 

Studies have shown vitamin K to be equivalent to Fosamax-type osteoporosis drugs, with far fewer side effects.

Stave off Varicose Veins …

 

Inadequate levels of vitamin K may reduce the activity of the matrix GLA protein (MGP), which in turn has been identified as a key player in the development of varicosis, or varicose veins.               Lower Your Risk of Diabetes …

 

People with the highest intakes of vitamin K from their diet had a 20 percent lower risk of diabetes compared with those with the lowest intakes, according to the latest research from University Medical Center Utrecht in the Netherlands. Past studies have also shown vitamin K to help reduce the progression of insulin resistance.

How Much Vitamin K2 do You Need?

How many people have adequate vitamin K2? Just about zero, according to Dr. Vermeer and other experts in the field. But at this time there is really no commercial test that can give you an accurate measure of your levels. Vitamin K measurements in blood plasma can be done accurately, but the results are really not helpful because they mainly reflect “what you ate yesterday,” according to Dr. Vermeer.

 

Dr. Vermeer and his team have developed and patented a very promising laboratory test to assess vitamin K levels indirectly by measuring circulating MGP. Their studies have indicated this to be a very reliable method to assess the risk for arterial calcification — hence cardiac risk. They are hoping to have this test available to the public within one to two years for a reasonable price, and several labs are already interested. They are also working on developing a home test that would be available at your neighborhood drug store.

 

In the meantime, since nearly 100 percent of people don’t get sufficient amounts of vitamin K2 from their diet to reap its health benefits, you can assume you need to bump up your vitamin K2 levels by modifying your diet or taking a high-quality supplement.

 

As for dietary sources, eating lots of green vegetables, especially kale, spinach, collard greens, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts, will increase your vitamin K1 levels naturally. For vitamin K2, cheese and especially cheese curd is an excellent source. The starter ferment for both regular cheese and curd cheese contains bacteria — lactococci and proprionic acids bacteria — which both produce K2.

 

You can also obtain all the K2 you’ll need (about 200 micrograms) by eating 15 grams of natto daily, which is half an ounce. It’s a small amount and very inexpensive, but many Westerners do not enjoy the taste and texture.

 

If you don’t care for the taste of natto, the next best thing is a high-quality K2 supplement. Remember you must always take your vitamin K supplement with fat since it is fat-soluble and won’t be absorbed without it.

 

Although the exact dosing is yet to be determined, Dr. Vermeer recommends between 45 mcg and 185 mcg daily for adults. You must use caution on the higher doses if you take anticoagulants, but if you are generally healthy and not on these types of medications, I suggest 150 mcg daily.

 

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Foods, Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

Foods to Get More Vitamin D in your Diet

vitaminDfoods

Foods to Get More Vitamin D in Your Diet

 

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that’s essential for proper absorption of calcium in your digestive tract, and it helps maintain blood levels of calcium and phosphate. So, getting enough vitamin D is necessary for bone health throughout your life — vitamin D deficiency can lead to rickets in kids and osteoporosis in adults.

 

The thing is, people don’t get much vitamin D from the diet. Your body makes vitamin D when your skin is exposed to UV rays from the sun. It only takes a few minutes of sun exposure every day to get your vitamin D, but if you live in a place where it gets colder in the winter, there’s a good chance you won’t get enough sun exposure for several months out of each year.

 

Most experts recommend a daily intake of 600 International Units. You won’t find many foods that are high in vitamin D, but there are some. Flip through this slideshow to learn more about these foods.

 

Maitake mushrooms, or “hen in the woods” mushrooms, are a delicious and low-calorie source of vitamin D, as well as potassium and several B-complex vitamins. One cup of diced maitake mushrooms has more than 700 International Units of vitamin D. Maitake mushrooms might also have health benefits beyond being nutritious.

 

Halibut is a good source of vitamin D, with about 200 International Units in a 3-ounce serving of fish. Halibut is also a good source of protein, B-complex vitamins, zinc, magnesium, and potassium. Eating halibut also provides you with essential omega-3 fatty acids.

 

Regular portabella mushrooms have a small amount of vitamin D, but portabellas grown with extra exposure to ultraviolet light have much more. One whole UV-exposed portabella mushroom has about 375 International Units of vitamin D. Portabellas are also an excellent source of selenium, potassium, and several B-complex vitamins.

 

Fish oils contain vitamin D so it makes sense that fatty fish like salmon are good for getting vitamin D. Three ounces of fresh pink salmon have 370 International Units and three ounces of canned sockeye salmon has almost 800 International Units of vitamin D. Salmon is also an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids, protein and an antioxidant called astaxanthin. And don’t let the idea that salmon is a ‘fatty fish’ scare you off — a six-ounce piece of salmon only has about 200 calories.

Trout is another good source of vitamin D, and since it’s a white fish, it has a milder flavor than oilier fish like salmon and tuna. Three ounces of rainbow trout has about 650 International Units of vitamin D. Trout is also an excellent source of protein, B-complex vitamins, and minerals.

 

Vitamin D is found in the yolks, so eating whole eggs is a good way to get some vitamin D in your diet. Each egg yolk has about 40 International Units of vitamin D so eating two eggs contributes 80 International Units to your daily intake. Eggs are also an excellent source of protein and lutein. One egg has about 70 calories.

 

Chanterelle mushrooms are another good plant-based source of vitamin D. One cup of chanterelles has more than 100 International Units of vitamin D. These mushrooms are also an excellent source of potassium and low in calories — that one cup of chanterelles has only 20 calories.

 

Canned tuna has about 40 International Units of vitamin D in a three-ounce serving so each can has about 80 International Units). Canned tuna is also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, potassium, magnesium, selenium and zinc. It’s convenient too — keep canned tuna on hand for sandwiches, salads and for using in recipes.

 

Vitamin D is also available as a dietary supplement, either alone or combined with other nutrients. Calcium supplements usually contain vitamin D. Vitamin D supplements are generally safe but follow label directions and keep them away from young kids — vitamin D in large amounts can become toxic over time. And you should also speak with your healthcare provider before taking vitamin D supplements if you have any health conditions.

 

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Uncategorized, Vitamins and Supplements

Black Cohosh : Benefits and Uses

black-cohosh-retina

Black Cohosh : Benefits and Uses

 

Fever, pneumonia, menstrual issues and even musculoskeletal pain – these are just some health problems that Native Americans believe the black cohosh plant may be good for.1 After discovering it over two centuries ago,2 these civilizations are still relying on this perennial plant to address certain illnesses. But how exactly does black cohosh work, and can it really offer benefits for your health?

 

What Is Black Cohosh?

A member of the buttercup plant family, black cohosh (Actaea racemose – it was previously known as Cimicifuga racemosa3) is a flowering perennial plant that grows in certain parts of the U.S. and Canada.4 From June to September, the plant produces white flowers, but take a look at its roots, and you’ll see that they’re black. This is where the plant gets its name. The rootstock and roots are also knotty and rough, which is why the plant is called “cohosh” – this is actually a Native American word for “rough.”5

 

The black cohosh plant thrives best in moist and rich soil, and can be seen growing on hillsides and in open woods. It can grow up to 8 feet tall, with pinnate leaves and irregular tooth leaflets.6 The root is believed to be the most beneficial part of the plant. Black cohosh root has a long history of being used medicinally.7 Its rhizomes, which also grows underground, may have healing uses, too.8

 

Black cohosh is known by other names as well, such as black snakeroot, baneberry, bugwort, rattlesnake root, squaw root and Sheng Ma, to name a few.9 However, remember that black cohosh and blue cohosh should not be confused with each other, as they’re very different plants.10 Blue cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides) has been historically used to induce labor or miscarriage, but eventually it was found to be dangerous for the fetus.11

 

Black Cohosh Uses for Women’s Health

Aside from Native Americans, Europeans have also been using black cohosh for over four decades now. Specifically in Germany, it’s actually approved for alleviating pain associated with premenstrual syndrome, dysmenorrhea and menopause.12 In fact, black cohosh achieved its popularity because of claims stating that it can help control menopause symptoms, including:13,14

 

Hot flashes

Mood changes

Sleep issues and night sweats

Headaches

Heart palpitations

Vaginal dryness

Painful intercourse

Vertigo

Decreased sex drive

Ringing in the ears

Bone density loss (among postmenopausal women)

Reduced mental performance (among postmenopausal women)

This is mainly due to the estrogen-like response in black cohosh, which helps increase low levels of estrogen that are prevalent in most menopausal women. It’s even said that black cohosh may work as a natural hormone replacement.15

 

Do the Studies Support Black Cohosh’s Purported Claims?

Black cohosh’s potential for easing menopause symptoms has been known since the 1950s, and individual studies are said to support these claims,16 such as:

 

  • A review published in 2010 found that menopausal women had a 26 percent reduction in hot flashes and night sweats when using black cohosh supplements.17

 

  • Published in the journal Gynecological Endocrinology in 2013, a review found that women who took black cohosh had, on average, more reduced menopausal symptoms compared to women who were given a placebo.18

 

  • A 2017 study published in the Neuroscience journal found that black cohosh potentially helped regulate the body temperature of female rats that had no ovaries.19

 

However, please note that currently there’s still no final and conclusive scientific evidence of black cohosh’s effectiveness for this condition. In addition, most studies that show the positive benefits did not exceed six months to one year of use, which is why long-term use of this supplement is never recommended.20 Therefore, as much as possible, exercise extreme caution before supplementing with black cohosh.

 

Other Potential Health Benefits Linked to Black Cohosh

In addition to its potential for alleviating menopause symptoms, black cohosh is also believed to help ease other conditions. In fact, Native Americans used it to treat fever, musculoskeletal pain, pneumonia, cough, and even aid in sluggish labor.21 Other possible benefits linked to black cohosh include:22

 

  • Preventing digestive issues: Black cohosh may help improve nutrient uptake, assist in removing waste products, and even reduce constipation and risk of gastric ulcers.

 

  • Easing sleep problems: It’s said to be a natural sedative that can help ease stress, anxiety and insomnia.

 

  • Alleviating premenstrual symptoms: This herb is said to help muscles to relax, easing tension that may lead to painful cramps. It may be useful for women who have irregular cycles as well.23

 

Again, there’s no conclusive evidence confirming these potential effects of black cohosh, so make sure to consult a physician prior to using this herbal supplement.

 

Black Cohosh Dosage: What’s the Typical Amount for Supplementation?

Black cohosh supplements are available in different forms, such as capsules or liquid extracts. The roots are also dried and transformed into tea. In some cases, the herb is used as an ingredient in herbal mixtures. You can buy it in drug or health stores, or through online sellers.24

 

There’s no set dose for this supplement, although in studies, 20 to 40 milligram tablets, taken twice a day, are typically used to ease menopausal symptoms. Do not take over 900 milligrams of black cohosh a day, and do not take it for long periods of time.25 This supplement is ill-advised for children and teenagers. There are also groups of people who should not take black cohosh at any costs, such as:

 

  • People who are allergic to aspirin

 

  • People who have liver disease, seizure disorders or have a high risk of blood clots and stroke

 

  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women

 

  • Women with uterine or breast cancer

 

  • Women suffering from endometriosis

 

Furthermore, while black cohosh may have positive effects for hot flashes during menopause, please note that women who experience hot flashes as a side effect of cancer therapy (such as chemotherapy or radiation) and cancer medications like tamoxifen (Nolvadex), should not take this herbal supplement.

 

Not only can this herb interfere with cancer drugs, but there are also concerns stating that its plant-based estrogens (phytoestrogens) may actually stimulate breast tumor growths.26

 

Black Cohosh May Have Unpleasant Side Effects as Well

The side effects linked to black cohosh usually occur when high doses of this supplement are ingested. Headaches and upset stomach are two common examples. In some people, more severe complications like liver injury have also occurred.

 

Thus, if you’re using any medication that affects the liver, consult your healthcare provider prior to using black cohosh. People who use hormone replacement therapy, sedatives, birth control pills and blood pressure medicine should also refrain from using this supplement without their physician’s approval.27

 

Remember: Use Black Cohosh as a Last Resort

While black cohosh may offer potential for easing menopausal symptoms and other hormone-related conditions, I do not recommend it as your first go-to option. Instead, try addressing your diet and see if this may have positive effects on your symptoms. Other strategies include optimizing your vitamin D levels and getting sufficient levels of high-quality omega-3 fats.

 

Frequently Asked Questions About Black Cohosh

Q: How long does it take for black cohosh to work?

 

A: According to scientific evidence, black cohosh may help relieve hot flashes and other menopause symptoms after about a month of treatment.28 However, keep in mind that there are no studies confirming its effects after long-term use, so refrain from taking it for long periods of time.

 

Q: Is black cohosh safe?

 

A: While black cohosh may be generally safe for healthy people, there are certain individuals who are advised not take this supplement. It can also come with unpleasant side effects like stomach upset and headaches. If you experience these, stop taking it immediately.

 

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