Tips For Treating PMS Naturally

30 Jul

Tips for Treating PMS Naturally

 

Comedienne Rosanne Barr once quipped, “Women complain about PMS, but I think of it as the only time of the month when I can be myself.”

While most women can live with and, like Ms. Barr, even make light of the emotional and physical changes that may occur during the second half of the menstrual cycle, up to one in five women have full-blown premenstrual syndrome (PMS). For them, PMS symptoms such as mood swings, food cravings, bloating, weight gain, and breast tenderness are so marked that they interfere with quality of life.

Supplement Solutions for PMS Symptoms

The good news is, several supplements can be beneficial when it comes to treating PMS naturally. Studies show that women with high intakes of calcium and vitamin D are 40 percent less likely to suffer with PMS symptoms. The recommendation is taking at least 1,000 mg of supplemental calcium and 2,000–5,000 IU of vitamin D daily. After three months, have your blood level of vitamin D tested and, if necessary, adjust your dose to attain or maintain the optimal level of 50–80 ng/ml. (Be aware that vitamin D levels plummet during the dark days of winter, and PMS symptoms may get worse during that time of year.) Vitamin B6 and magnesium are also helpful, so I suggest a daily dose of 100 mg and 300–500 mg, respectively.

Effective herbal treatments for PMS include chaste tree berry (Vitex agnus-castus)—which reduced breast tenderness, irritability, depression, and headache in a British Medical Journal study—and St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum), which has been shown to improve overall symptoms. Look for these herbs in your health food store and use as directed. Be aware that St. John’s wort interacts with a number of drugs, including birth control pills.

Some of the newest research also reveals that DIM (Diindolylmethane), an antioxidant and phytonutrient compound present in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage, can help ease PMS symptoms by naturally reversing estrogen dominance—a key cause of PMS. Though eating foods rich in DIM may be beneficial, as far as treatments for PMS go, supplemental DIM, 100–200 mg daily, is recommended.

PMS Symptoms Eased With Lifestyle Changes and Natural Hormones

On the lifestyle front, you should try to eat a good diet (go easy on sodium and carbs and eat lots of potassium-rich produce), get regular exercise, do what you can to reduce stress, and give acupuncture a try.

If you still need help, consider bioidentical hormone replacement. As mentioned earlier, PMS symptoms are often caused by estrogen dominance—too much estrogen and not enough progesterone. Although topical natural progesterone is available over the counter, I recommend consulting a physician who is knowledgeable about bioidentical hormones.

To find a doctor in your area skilled in treating PMS naturally, visit acam.org,

Now it’s your turn: Do you have suggestions for treating PMS naturally?

Dr. Whitaker

Longevity Checklist

28 Jul

 

Living until you’re 100 isn’t just about making it there, it’s about feeling good every step of the way. Check out these 9 tips to increase your longevity in a healthy, positive way.

Number 9: Eat Purple Foods

The nerves in your brain connect to one another to send messages and signals for your brain to function. But, as you age your brain can lose some of these connections causing your brain to become slower in sending and receiving signals and causing you to age more rapidly.

By eating purple foods such as grapes, blueberries, pomegranate, eggplant, beets and wine, you can help protect your nerve connections and even form new ones to reverse aging in the brain. Add one cup of purple foods to every meal to boost your brain power.

Number 8: Keep Your Bones and Muscles Strong

If your thigh muscles are week, chances are you will become more frail as you age. So it’s time to strengthen those thighs to keep you young and agile.

Standing on one leg strengthens your thigh muscles. Every morning stand on only your right leg for 10 seconds. Then switch to your left. Repeat three times on each leg for best results. Being able to balance your legs will not only strengthen your thighs, but your brain as well!

Number 7: Lower Your Stress Levels

Stress impacts our bodies in many ways and too much daily stress can lead to early aging and health problems. Every time you get stressed out your heart rate rises and has to work harder. In order to lower your stress and your heart rate, take a nap!

Naps are extremely beneficial because when you’re asleep you don’t respond intensely to stress so your heart rate is able to neutralize and strain is removed off of your body. We’re constantly busy and sometimes napping may seem hard and out of the question, but taking the time to stop and nap every day can improve your health and increase your longevity.

Number 6: Stop Eating When You Are 80% Full

When you eat until you’re full – or overly full – your metabolism slows down, digestion becomes harder, and you age faster. If you only fill 80% of your plate and stop eating when you’re 80% full, your body will promote a metabolism that protects your cells from aging damage.

Number 5: Eat 7 Walnuts a Day

The Omega-3s in nuts protect your blood vessels. Eating just seven walnuts a day can help keep your heart healthy and even prevent heart attacks. Eating nuts every day can add five years onto your life!

Number 4: Go to Bed One Hour Earlier Every Night

For every hour of sleep you lose your risk of developing high blood pressure increases by 37%, which can increase your risk of a heart attack or stroke up to 16 times. Adding just one extra hour of sleep can increase your longevity. Turn off all electronics early, stop watching TV and doing work, and make sure you set a strict – earlier – bedtime.

Number 3: Laugh at Least 20 Times a Day

Laughter naturally makes us happier, but it also has the potential to increase our lifespan. Laughter boosts our immunity and even helps us burn calories, increasing our longevity with each joke, article, picture, and TV show. Make sure you laugh several times throughout the day to keep your spirits and lifespan up.

Number 2: Have Tea with Friends

Amidst our busy lives it can sometimes be hard to find space in our calendar for our friends, but it’s extremely important that we do! When it comes to longevity, social isolation is equivalent to smoking 15 cigarettes a day. Try and make a promise with yourself to get out once a week and meet a friend for tea to increase your longevity.

Number 1: Vitamin D

Vitamin D is the most important thing to help you increase your life span because it protects against cancer. People with low levels of vitamin D are linked to conditions such as diabetes, asthma, and even certain types of cancer. New research shows that vitamin D can kill human cancer cells so take 1,000 IUs of this super vitamin every day.

Dr. Oz

 

Benefits of Pycnogenol

26 Jul

Benefits of Pycnogenol

Pycnogenol®  is an extract from French maritime pine bark that boosted the effectiveness of vitamin C and other antioxidants. The research on this supplement has come a long way in the last twenty years and several additional benefits of Pycnogenol have emerged.

Benefits of Pycnogenol: Support Your Heart

A study from the University of Arizona Medical School and the University of Munster, Germany, demonstrated that Pycnogenol significantly reduces platelet aggregation—the clumping together of blood cells to form blood clots that cut off blood flow and precipitate heart attacks and strokes. A group of smokers, in whom this process is accelerated, were given either 500 mg of aspirin or 100–120 mg of Pycnogenol. Pycnogenol performed as well as aspirin in reducing platelet clumping.

More recent research found that Pycnogenol also helps enhance production of nitric oxide, a molecule made by the endothelial cells lining the arteries that keeps them open and relaxed, which is important for maintaining healthy blood pressure and circulation.

Benefits of Pycnogenol: Improve Asthma Symptoms

Studies suggest that Pycnogenol also improves asthma symptoms and reduces drug requirements, especially in children.

Researchers enrolled 60 kids, ages 6 to 18, with mild-to-moderate asthma in a three-month, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. They discovered that, compared with those taking placebo, children taking Pycnogenol had significant improvements in pulmonary function and asthma symptoms as well as reductions in leukotrienes, a marker of inflammation. They were also able to discontinue or reduce their use of “rescue inhalers” more frequently.

A previous study showed benefits for adults with asthma as well. The dose used in these studies was 1 mg per pound of body weight in both children and adults, up to 200 mg per day.

Benefits of Pycnogenol: Knock Out the Common Cold

Italian researchers looked at the effects of various combinations of Pycnogenol, vitamin C, and zinc in adults with colds. The clear winner was the combo of all three. Whereas untreated colds lasted seven days, study participants who took 100 mg of Pycnogenol, 200 mg of vitamin C, and 30 mg of zinc daily in divided doses had resolution after only four days. Better still, symptoms such as runny nose, nasal congestion, sore throat, sneezing, and cough were significantly reduced.

That’s why I recommend keeping these supplements on hand and taking them at the first sign of symptoms. Adding them to your daily regimen may also help stave off colds.

Benefits of Pycnogenol: Protect Your Vision

A clinically studied blend of Pycnogenol and a special bilberry extract (called Mirtogenol®) has been shown to provide benefits for vision and eye health. More specifically, because it strengthens the capillaries in the retina, Mirtogenol can help prevent retinopathy. Another study found this supplement can even halt progression of vision loss in people with diabetic retinopathy.

Mirtogenol was also studied in people with slightly elevated intraocular pressures—the hallmark risk factor for glaucoma. In both studies, it was effective at decreasing eye pressures and also increasing ocular blood flow. The dosages used ranged from 20-240 mg daily.

Other Benefits of Pycnogenol

Research has also found that Pycnogenol in combination with L-arginine is an effective natural treatment for erectile dysfunction, and that taking Pycnogenol before, during, and after long flights reduces risk of deep vein thrombosis. Another study discovered that cancer patients who took Pycnogenol during chemotherapy or radiation had less vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, and other side effects.

Rid Your Body of Lead Toxicity With Chelation Therapy

23 Jul

Rid Your Body of Lead Toxicity With Chelation Therapy

 

Abundant, durable, malleable, resistant to corrosion: No wonder lead has been such a popular metal throughout human history. Ancient Romans found a multitude of uses for it, from lining water pipes and drinking vessels to sweetening wine. What they didn’t realize were the detrimental health effects that could be caused by lead toxicity. It is now believed that lead poisoning was responsible for the bizarre behavior, mental incompetence, gout, stillbirths, and sterility that afflicted the Roman aristocracy—and quite possibly contributed to the decline  of the Roman Empire.

Fast forward to 1921, when General Motors engineer Thomas Midgley, Jr., came up with another use for lead. As a gasoline additive, it reduced engine knock and improved performance.  Of course, it was known to be toxic. Thomas Midgley himself was plagued with a “mysterious illness” while experimenting with it and, in 1924, 15 refinery workers died and 300 more became severely psychotic as a result of working with leaded gasoline.

But that didn’t matter. Thanks to corporate greed and government complicity, lead’s well-documented adverse effects were ignored, and for more than 60 years this potent toxin spewed into our environment. Leaded gas was finally phased out in 1986, and air levels of lead dropped dramatically. But even today, nearly 30 years later, 7 million tons of lead remains in our soil, water, air—and bodies.

Bones Bear the Burden of Lead Toxicity

More than 90 percent of your body’s total burden of lead toxicity resides in your skeleton. And for those of us who grew up in the days when lead was also in paint, pipes, water tanks, cans, and a plethora of other consumer products, that’s a lot of lead. In fact, we harbor a whopping 650 times more of this heavy metal in our bones than people did 100 years ago.

Lead is a neurotoxin that causes mental retardation and developmental delays in children and a multitude of cognitive problems in people of all ages. It also damages the endothelial cells lining the arteries and curbs production of nitric oxide, impairing circulation, raising blood pressure, and increasing risk of cardiovascular disease, kidney dysfunction, cancer, and premature death.

If lead would stay put in the bones, it might not be such a problem—but it doesn’t. Along with other minerals, lead is released into the bloodstream and transported to tissues throughout the body. Generally, this release is slow, gradual, and unnoticed. But there are times when it picks up speed. During pregnancy, when extra calcium is needed for fetal bone development, blood lead levels rise, increasing risk of hypertension for women with high levels, and causing low birth weight and physical and mental developmental delays for their children.

Lead is also mobilized during mid-life and old age. Women are especially vulnerable after menopause, when bone loss increases. It is estimated that blood lead levels go up 30 percent during the five years after menopause! Men also lose bone mass as they age, and the resultant increase in blood lead levels negatively affects them as well.

Chelation Therapy Gets the Lead Out

As you can see, we all need to take steps to address lead toxicity, and the fastest way to do this is to undergo a course of intravenous (IV) EDTA chelation, also called chelation therapy. EDTA is a synthetic amino acid that forms a tight chemical bond with lead and other minerals and carries them out of the body in the urine.

EDTA chelation has been the number-one FDA-approved therapy for lead poisoning since 1948. After World War II, sailors suffering with lead toxicity acquired while painting battleships and docks with lead-based paint were treated with EDTA chelation, and their results were remarkable. Not only did these men have the expected restoration of memory, energy, vision, and hearing, but those who also had heart disease experienced unexpected improvements in angina and circulation.

That’s how the broad benefits of chelation therapy were serendipitously discovered. Astute physicians took heed and began using chelation for patients with cardiovascular disease and circulatory problems and, for a decade or so, its popularity mushroomed. Then the politics and economics of modern medicine intervened.

To make a long story short, this relatively inexpensive, office-based therapy had no chance against the Goliaths of cardiology (surgery and drugs). Chelation therapy became embroiled in controversy, where it remains to this day. But a few thousand physicians refused to give up on it.

Dr. Whitaker

Niacin: Is it Really Safe and Effective

21 Jul

Niacin: Is it Really Safe and Effective?

 

You may have heard about the study published in The New England Journal of Medicine that concluded that niacin is not an effective therapy for managing cholesterol as once thought, and that it can actually do more harm than good. But Dr. Whitaker wants to assure you that this is just another example of the media skewing research results. Let me explain.

Previous Niacin Research

Niacin, or nicotinic acid, is a form of vitamin B3 that has been used to lower cholesterol and triglycerides since the late 1950s, decades before statin drugs came on the market.

The first large placebo-controlled trial of the effects of niacin on cardiovascular disease began in 1966. In this study, more than 8,000 men with a history of heart attack took 3,000 mg of niacin or a placebo daily. After six years, as compared to those taking a placebo, the average total cholesterol of the men taking niacin fell by 10 percent, triglycerides by 26 percent, recurrent heart attacks by 27 percent, and strokes by 26 percent. Although there was no difference in the death rate at that time, in a nine-year follow-up period there were 11 percent fewer deaths among those who took niacin.

Subsequent research found that niacin also raises “good” HDL cholesterol. A low HDL cholesterol level is an independent risk factor for heart disease, while a high level is protective, even if total cholesterol is above normal. In addition, niacin has been shown to favorably affect other blood lipids. It causes a shift away from small, dense LDL cholesterol particles to larger, more buoyant, and less damaging LDL particles. Moreover, it is one of the few proven therapies for lowering lipo-protein(a), another risk factor for cardiovascular disease.

The Latest Niacin Study

So what about the latest niacin study that “disproves” these previous findings and warns about a host of side effects, including gastrointestinal distress, skin problems, and blood sugar concerns?

For starters, the study examined the effects of prescription, extended-release niacin, which is not the same type of niacin used in the previous research. In fact, ever since Dr. Whitaker has been recommending niacin for its cardiovascular benefits Dr. Whitaker has been telling people about these potential side effects associated with extended-release niacin (and also when taking high doses of the regular form)—and, therefore, this type of niacin should be used with caution.

Second, the study participants were also taking statin drugs. The purpose of this study was to determine if extended-release niacin was a good adjunct therapy for people on statins since it has been shown to raise HDL, which is something statins cannot do. As Dr, Whitaker has said many times before, statins are some of the most dangerous drugs on the market because they deplete coenzyme Q10 and are associated with increased risk of memory loss and other cognitive problems, diabetes, heart failure, muscle pain and weakness, and liver damage.

Furthermore, along with the extended-release niacin, participants received another drug (laropiprant) designed to reduce the common, uncomfortable—but harmless—flushing that occurs when taking therapeutic doses of niacin. (Niacin dilates the blood vessels and promotes the release of histamine in the capillaries, resulting in a discomforting warm, tingly, itchy feeling.)

So, in actuality, the side effects the study subjects experienced very well could have been caused by one or both of these other drugs.

Don’t Shy Away From Niacin

The bottom line:  niacin has its uses. Most of Dr. Whitaker’s patients see benefits with 1,000–2,000 mg daily. Start with a low dose and build up gradually over the course of a few weeks. Taking it in divided doses with meals reduces flushing. A baby aspirin (81 mg) half an hour before taking niacin and taking it at bedtime are helpful as well. And, as I’ve been saying for years, high-dose niacin is best taken under the supervision of a doctor, and if you have diabetes, gout, or liver problems, you should be especially cautious about taking higher doses. Please see a Doctor to determine what is correct for you.

If you decide niacin isn’t your best option, there are several other ways to naturally manage your cholesterol. They include berberine (500 mg twice a day), red-yeast rice (600–1,200 mg, taken with 100 mg of coenzyme Q10, two times a day), and ¼ cup of freshly ground flaxseed daily. Other measures that can help increase HDL cholesterol are eliminating trans fats, sugars, and starches from your diet and increasing your aerobic exercise. And remember, living a healthy lifestyle and optimizing your nutritional status are far more protective than chasing some arbitrary cholesterol goal.

Now it’s your turn: What do you think about this latest niacin study?

Acupuncture Supports Cancer Treatments

18 Jul

 

The American Cancer Society has reported that half of all men and a third of all women in the United States will develop cancer during their lifetimes. Although there are many forms of cancer, all forms of the disease begin with abnormal cells that grow out of control.

Unlike other illnesses that are eradicated by the body’s natural defense system, cancer needs to be treated with powerful medical interventions. Unfortunately, most of the current cancer treatments available have some debilitating side effects.

Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine have received much attention as an adjunctive therapy in cancer treatments because they address many of the unpleasant symptoms and side effects that come up during and after chemotherapy, radiation, biological therapy and surgery.

If you are currently undergoing treatment for cancer, acupuncture and Oriental medicine can provide real help, by decreasing many of the side effects associated with conventional cancer treatments.

Some of the issues acupuncture can help with include:

  • Pain Management
  • Nausea
  • Stress
  • Fatigue
  • Depression and Anxiety
  • Dry Mouth
  • Night Sweats and Hot Flashes
  • Fluid Retention
  • Weight Maintenance

Acupuncture takes a holistic approach to health care and is particularly useful in providing pain relief, reducing the impact of side effects, accelerating recovery and improving overall quality of life.

According to the National Cancer Institute, acupuncture may cause physical responses in nerve cells, the pituitary gland, and parts of the brain. It is proposed that, by stimulating physical responses in these areas, acupuncture positively affects blood pressure and body temperature, boosts immune system activity, and causes the body’s natural painkillers, such as endorphins, to be released.

To learn more about how acupuncture can safely and effectively be incorporated into an oncology treatment plan call for a consultation today!

 

Science Provides Proof of Acupuncture’s Helpful Role in Cancer Therapy

Clinical trials have examined the effects of acupuncture on cancer as a disease, as well as the symptoms caused by cancer treatments. Results have shown that, for many patients, treatment with acupuncture relieves symptoms or keeps them from getting worse.

Relief for Nausea and Vomiting:
The strongest evidence of the beneficial effect of acupuncture has come from clinical trials that investigated its use for relieving nausea and vomiting. Several types of clinical trials using different acupuncture methods showed acupuncture reduced nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy and surgery.

Boosts the Immune System:
Human studies on the effect of acupuncture on the immune system of cancer patients showed that it improved immune system response, including an increase in the number of white blood cells.

Improves Pain Management:
In clinical studies, acupuncture reduced pain levels for some cancer patients. In one study, most of the patients treated with acupuncture were able to stop taking drugs for pain relief or to reduce their doses.

Relieves Pain and Stiffness during Hormone Therapy:
In 2010, The Journal of Clinical Oncology published the results of a small study that concluded that acupuncture helped relieve pain and stiffness in breast cancer patients who were simultaneously being treated with hormone therapies.

Minimizes Dry Mouth:
In 2009, the medical journal Head and Neck reported the results of a pilot study done at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. The subjects were people suffering from head and neck cancer. The authors concluded that the pilot study demonstrated that acupuncture can improve the subjective symptoms of radiation-induced dry mouth as early as two weeks after starting treatment. They found that benefits can last for one month after treatment ends.

Reduces Pain and Shoulder Dysfunction:
In 2008, Dr. David Pfister, chief of the head and neck medical oncology service at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, reported that patients found significant reductions in both dry mouth and pain and shoulder dysfunction after neck dissection with the help of acupuncture. Dr. Pfister highlighted the potential role of acupuncture in oncology.

Reduces Hot Flashes:
In 2011 A Yale University/University of Pittsburgh study of women with hot flashes brought on by conventional breast cancer treatment found that women who received acupuncture had a 30 percent reduction in hot flashes.

Endorsement of Acupuncture for Cancer Treatment

Acupuncture continues to receive enthusiastic testimonials from patients and health care professionals alike. Prominent names in U.S. society and the medical community have attested to the efficacy of acupuncture as a supportive therapy for oncology treatment.

Cancer Prevention in Daily Life

Many items in the produce aisle can help you prevent cancer, but some other foods in the supermarket can also help protect your health and the health of your family.

Carotenoids – Found in produce like cantaloupe and carrots, these plant chemicals act as antioxidants and have been shown to reduce the risk of lung cancer.

Cold Water Fish – Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil, have anti-inflammatory properties. Fish high in Omega-3’s include salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, shellfish, and herring.

Cruciferous vegetables – High in vitamins, fiber, and potent anti-cancer phytochemicals, cruciferous vegetables are widely considered to be one of the healthiest food choices you can make. Some cruciferous vegetables are broccoli, cauliflower, radishes, Brussels sprouts, kale, cabbage and bok choy.

According to the American Institute for Cancer, there is solid evidence that links cruciferous vegetables and protection against cancer. Studies have shown that this vegetable group has the ability to stop the growth of cancer cells for tumors in the breast, uterine lining, lung, colon, liver and cervix.

Studies that track the diets of people over time have found that diets high in cruciferous vegetables are linked to lower rates of prostate cancer among men.

Ellagic Acid – Found in raspberries, strawberries, cranberries, walnuts, pecans and pomegranates, this phytochemical can act as an antioxidant, and may help break down and remove some cancer-causing substances.

Resveratrol – A polyphenol that may have antioxidant properties, resveratrol is found in the skin of red grapes, cocoa, peanuts, blueberries, and cranberries.

Whole Grains – Fiber is rich in antioxidants, helps fight colon cancer, and the phenolic compounds in whole grains may help reduce the risk of certain gastrointestinal cancers. Pick grains high in folate and fiber, such as oats.

Folate – Linked to lowered risk for gastrointestinal and pancreatic cancers, folate is found in dark green leafy vegetables, fruits and juices, nuts, beans, peas, dairy products, poultry and meat, eggs, seafood, and grains.

Foods with the highest levels of folate include spinach, liver, asparagus, and Brussels sprouts.

Pomegranate Juice – Extremely antioxidant-rich, this juice helps prevent colon and prostate cancer.
When singer Sheryl Crow was diagnosed with breast cancer, she underwent a lumpectomy followed by radiation. During these treatments she also received acupuncture.

Former First Lady of Chicago, Maggie Daley, gave generously to help open the Maggie Daley Center for Women’s Cancer Care at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. The center includes acupuncture as an option for the patients.

Many people are finding out that, although the treatments necessary to defeat cancer can be traumatizing and debilitating, they can get some relief through acupuncture.

Christina Sarlo

Steps to Sensational Smoothies

16 Jul

green smoothie 261x300 10 Green Smoothie Recipes

 

Whether you’re making a nutrient-dense meal replacement, a protein-packed workout booster or a sweet treat, the flavor combinations are endless. The easy and forgiving nature of smoothies makes them a fabulous option for kids, novice cooks and busy people on the run who don’t want to compromise on flavor or nutrition.A basic smoothie is quick and easy, and contains three essential elements: a liquid, a base (fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables) and a chill factor (ice or frozen fruit). Those simple components inspire all kinds of wonderful- tasting blends. Choose ingredients for nutrition and pleasure (yes, you can have both) in equal measure, taking into account taste, texture and vibrant color. After all, nobody wants to drink anything that looks and tastes like the place where the plants came to die. To take your blends to the next level, to maximize nutrient density and to amp up the “wow” flavor factor, check out these tips.

Juicing vs. blending

Juicing removes skins and piths, which is good for cleansing or recovery from acute illness, as it offers a nutrient-dense experience that accommodates gentler digestion. Blending retains all the nutrients in skins, piths and seeds; that kind of fiber slows down the assimilation of sugars, assists with bowel regularity and is thought to help eliminate toxins.

 

Layer 1-2-3

For personal blenders in which you invert the cup onto the blade assembly, reverse this process.

Liquid – pour liquids in first for efficient blending; then add powders such as protein mixes and dried green

Base – add soft and hard produce, and fibrous foods such as nuts and dried fruits, then frozen fruits

Chill Factor – the ice goes in last to help pull all the ingredients down into the blades for even mixing

6 ‘Wow’ elements

Amounts can vary depending on the size of you blender jar and personal preference.

blender picture

http://apps.washingtonpost.com/g/page/lifestyle/steps-to-a-sensational-smoothie/1164/

Greens – (1-2 cups) spinach, romaine, radish greens, collards, chard, kale, beet greens, dandelion, arugula, parsley, cilantro, mint, basil

Cream – (To taste) avocado, banana, mango, cooked grains (1/4 cup) silken tofu, nut butter, raw nuts (such as sprouted cashews and almonds, 1/4 to 1/2 cup), coconut or almond based yogurt (1/2 to 1 cup)

Base – (2-3 cups) fruits and vegetable (fresh, frozen, baked, steamed, dried), sprouted nuts and seeds

Boost – (Sprinkle in) superfoods powders, chia, hemp, flax, green powders, protein powder, cold-pressed oils

Magic – (Sprinkle in) spices, herbs, citrus zest, natural extracts and flavorings, sweeteners (stevia, brown rice syrup)

Liquid – (1-2 cups) water, coconut water, coconut and almond milk, juice, kombucha, herbal tea

Hot Additions

Warm it up – adding foods such as fennel, cinnamon, ginger and cayenne not only balances cooling blends but also gives smoothies a nice kick, stimulates the lymphatic system and can detoxify

Add a body bonus – adding 1/2 teaspoon of probiotic powder of the contents of 1 probiotic capsule helps to balance the natural sugar content of sweet smoothies, aids digestive system and can boost immunity.  It is undetectable in a smoothie and a great way to get your daily dose.

d=Drizzle in a healthy extra – cold-pressed oils such as flaxseed, hemp, borage, avocado, coconut, macadamia, pumpkin seed and olive are healthful boots. Start small, with just a teaspoon. Add gradually, usually about a tablespoon – just enough so you can’t detect it.

Cool Tips

Make ahead – consuming smoothies right away maximizes nutrient value. However, for convenience, they can be refrigerated in sealed glass containers for a few hours or overnight. For longer storage, freeze in glass jars, allowing an inch of space for expansion of liquids. Defrost in the refrigerator, then shake or blend before serving.

Flavor your ice – freeze cubes of leftover fruit and vegetable juice, milk and tea. Use instead of plain ice for a flavor or nutrient boost or to approximate the magic of ice cream or sorbet.

Freeze your vegetables  – our taste buds are temperature- sensitive, so ½ cup of frozen broccoli or cauliflower can be incorporated without altering the flavor of your smoothie.

Watch your combos.

If bloating is a concern, pay attention to food combining. Blending certain fruits and vegetables together is problematic for some people and not others. Adding too much fruit or sugar to blends, or drinking high-water-content foods after other concentrated foods, also can cause problems. Consult a registered dietitian or nutritionist.

Rotate your greens

To avoid oxalic toxicity (which can deplete calcium from bones and teeth), blend a variety of greens. Start with mild leafy greens such as spinach, romaine, radish greens and kale. Work your way up to more pungent greens such as collard, chard, beet greens and arugula. Then introduce wild edibles such as dandelion greens.

The Washington Post Article by Tess Masters, July 16, 2014

 

Having One Of “Those” Days? Switch Your Energy Using Acupressure

14 Jul

Having One of “Those” Days? Switch Your Energy Using Acupressure

 

Have you ever had one of those days when you couldn’t seem to keep from bumping into everything? You seemed to drop whatever you picked up or couldn’t concentrate on the job at hand. Do you ever find yourself reading several pages and then not remembering a single word?

You may be “switched.”

Energy moving through your body by way of the acupuncture system follows certain well-defined directions and pathways. Occasionally, one pattern can become “switched” or flow in the wrong direction. This can be caused by a variety of circumstances: stress, fatigue, injury, allergies, nervousness, worry, and poor diet are just a few.

Being switched isn’t something that will keep you from walking, talking or getting around. In fact, most people may never know they’re switched except for being clumsy, tongue-tied, and disoriented.

Another common problem associated with switching involves reading. When you’re switched, reading will put you to sleep. I won’t go into the details of this, or I’ll be responsible for putting you to sleep. Just remember, the next time your favorite book starts to become a cure for insomnia, you may be switched.

How to Correct Your Energy Flow

There are a couple of acupuncture points named K-27 (Kidney 27) that are located on the front of the body where the 1st rib, collar bone, and breast bone come together—one on the left and one on the right. They are easy to find. Simply place your fingers on either one of your collar bones and slowly follow it toward your breastbone (toward the center of your chest).

As you reach the end of the bone, you’ll notice there seems to be a small depression or hole. This is where the three bones I mentioned come together, and this is K-27.

K-27 is a special acupuncture point because it’s a switch, channeling energy from the right and left sides of the body. It is theorized that energy passes through the right K-27 point to the right side of your body, then it switches and passes through the left K-27 point to your left side of your body. Occasionally (with some of us, more frequently), we become switched and the energy that should be going to the right goes to the left and visa versa.

Here’s how you can fix the problem in about 30 seconds:

  1. Place your index and middle finger of one hand just on either side of your belly button.
  2. Now place the index finger of your other hand on the right K-27 point.
  3. Now, at the same time apply gentle pressure to both areas and rub in a rotary fashion.
  4. Do this for 15 to 20 seconds and then move your top index finger over to the left K-27 point and rub both places again for 15 to 20 seconds. That’s all there is to correcting the problem.

Next time you feel like you’re “all thumbs,” remember switching. It can make a big difference quickly and even if it’s not the problem, it won’t do any harm. (It can’t cause you to be switched; it can only fix the problem if it exists.)

Now It’s Your Turn: When was the last time you had one of “those” days?

Dr. Williams

What are Enzymes and How Do They Help?

11 Jul

Enzymes are catalysts and are made out of amino acids by RNA (RiboNucleic Acid) which is made by DNA (DeoxyriboNucleic Acid). Some people call them ‘active are they? Enzymes are proteins that are the catalyst for life. Without them life (and therefore health) would not exist as we know it. Even Oxygen needs enzymes to be released into the atmosphere. Their importance to health cannot be overestimated and you are going to learn that they are the prime tools in
regaining health from the majority of health problems. Without proper and appropriate enzyme activity, there can be no return to health. This is recognized by every medical doctor and is well known to those that use them as the front line in health care.

Enzymes are used in every facet of industry: making beer, cheese, leather processing, sauerkraut, fermented soy products like miso and tempeh, food processing and in many chemical processes. Even in the medical business, enzymes and enzyme activity are used in the analysis and manufacturing process.

The problem comes when enzymes are put forward for therapy and to replace patented drugs. Enzymes as a primary treatment are only ignored because they negate the need for the majority of expensive patented drugs and this is against the interests of the medical/pharmaceutical business. The medical/pharmaceutical business controls what treatments doctors are allowed to prescribe, using powerful marketing and sometimes, downright intimidation. This is not to ‘knock doctors’; they are caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.

Enzymes from plants work best at the human body’s temperature and PH. They are essential in every function of growth, repair and therefore health of every living cell in your body. “Without Sufficient Enzymes (and Co-Enzymes there can be no health. Thousands of enzymes are working every second to build and regenerate our body. They are constantly being converted or produced in our body and depend upon good living nutrition to keep ahead of daily damage and degeneration. They do need help in this job and this essential help comes from Co-Enzymes. These are critical vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin B12. Even a small deiciency in B12 results in disease. This becomes such a problem with elderly people on poor diets that they at times need injections.

Another Co-Enzyme, Zinc is needed by about 80 enzyme activities, not to mention the famous Co-Enzyme Q10. Without enzymes and co-enzymes there would be no living thing, as we know it. Grass, Trees, Insects, Germs, Animals and Humans all depend on enzymes to sustain growth and health. In a nutshell:

There are 3 types of enzymes:

1.    Food/Digestive enzymes – These take the basic building blocks delivered by “Digest food we eat and convert it to colloidal particles (the smallest particles that exist in a free state) that can be converted into healthy living tissue.

2.    Metabolic enzymes – Metabolic enzymes use these colloids to keep all of our organs and tissues functioning with hundreds of diverse chemical activities, repairing body organs and ighting disease. Our body’s ability to stay healthy,
to repair tissue when injured, to protect us from disease, is directly related to the quality and number of enzymes, coenzymes and nutritious food.
3.    Clean-Up Enzymes – these third types are not really a separate group, but are the enzymes for last job on the line, clearing up. They are responsible for cleaning up and eliminating the mess that is left in our body from the construction and repair work that is in operation 24/7. These clean-up enzymes clear our bodies of the undigested carbohydrates, proteins and any non-vital tissue loating around. Another vital job is to provide anti-inflammatory
enzymes to fight infections and tissue damage.

These Enzymes act to do specific jobs such as:

1. Digesting food.
2. Breaking down toxins.
3. Cleansing the blood.
4. Supporting the immune system.
5. Converting protein into muscle.
6. Contracting muscles.
7. Eliminating carbon dioxide from the lungs.
8. Supporting the pancreas and other vital organs.
Enzymes are the workers in your body – they carry out every chemical reaction. To have a healthy body you need both workers (enzymes) and building materials. The building materials are proteins (amino acids), minerals, and vitamins. All of these are necessary to build a healthy body. Trying to function without all the necessary enzymes is the reason for most body malfunctions.

There are seven categories of food enzymes:

(1) Lipase to break down fat
(2) Protease to break down protein
(3) Cellulase to break down fibres
(4) Amylase to break down starch;
(5) Lactase to break down dairy foods;
(6) Sucrase to break down sugars; and
(7) Maltase to break down grains.

There are two ways to preserve and replenish our enzyme level:

• Eating living foods & food supplements
• Taking enzyme supplements.
On a daily basis they are ingested in unprocessed, raw or lightly cooked food (called Exogenous or Food Enzymes) and they are also produced or converted by other enzymes inside the body (endogenous, meaning inside-created). Some have a long life (weeks) and some have a short life (minutes). This explains the obvious need for a daily intake of enzymes that are alive (meaning not microwaved, cooked or processed until enzyme death, as in pasteurised milk) and foods such as vegetables, fruits, raw or lightly cooked fish, meats and sprouted seeds and beans. Studies show that a 70 year old has only 20% of the enzymes found in the body of a 20 year old. This is a major part of the cause of age related diseases and is easy to correct with better food and supplementation.

Probably more that any other facet of life and health over the past 100 years. In  1930 only 80 enzymes were known. By 2000 3,000 enzymes had been researched and discovered. There are literally thousands of studies on enzymes’ contribution to life and health. Rheumatoid Arthritis, Cancer, Lung diseases all have studies showing enzyme therapy to be the most successful prime treatment.

In studies equivalent to a human taking thousand of tablets, no side efects were shown. Only Haemophilia patients would need to take them under supervision.

Serrapeptase is a proteolytic enzyme (protease) isolated from the microorganism, Serratia E15. Studies reveal that Serrapeptase has a speciic, anti-inflammatory effect, superior to that of other proteolytic enzymes. This immunologically active enzyme is completely bound to the alpha 2 macroglobulin in biological fluids. Histologic studies reveal powerful anti-inlammatory efects of this naturally occurring enzyme.This enzyme is produced commercially today through fermentation, but was originally found in the silkworm intestine. The Silkworm uses it for instantly dissolving the hard cocoon to allow the moth to escape and ly away. It also uses it to help digest the tough mulberry leaves that it feeds on.

Serrapeptase dissolves non-living tissue, blood clots, cysts, and arterial plaque.  The uses are wide ranging and cover just about every condition that is afected by inlammation and or non-living tissue.

Aging – or premature aging as we know it, is caused by four active problems:

1. Chronic Inflammation
2. A build-up of Fibrous Tissue
3. Thickening of the blood
4. Weakening of the Immune System

The causes of these problems have been identified as a deficiency of enzymes (a 70 year old has only 25% of the enzymes present in a 20 year old and a deficiency of nutrients both in the diet and being absorbed through a failing digestive system. Again, the nutrients absorbed are around 25% of the 20 year old – excluding the current standard junk diet being eaten by today’s 20 year old).

As enzymes are critical for a healthy regenerating system, any deficiency in the body and absorption, coupled with lack of nutrients in the food, will result in a prematurely degenerating body, otherwise known as Premature Aging.

A brief explanation of these active problems is:

1. Inflammation

Studies now show that chronic inflammation is a prime factor in both disease and aging. This inflammation is the result of diet/lifestyle factors caused by eating breads, pastry, biscuits, breakfast cereals, potatoes, rice, pasta, overcooked foods, micro-waved foods, irradiated foods, insufficient vegetables and fruits, stress, toxins and drugs. The degree of inflammation can be tested by biochemical markers such as C-Reactive Proteins; the higher the level the more chance of disease. Hardly a week goes by without another study showing that a major factor in disease and aging is inflammation.

These are partly being driven because some of the Major Drugs act as anti-inflammatory and the drug manufacturers are rubbing their hands with their potential. Drugs such as aspirin, statins, and other anti-inflammatory drugs all have published studies indicating they are disease preventatives for such diverse conditions as cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s. The fact that you should never forget however is that DRUGS ALWAYS HAVE SIDE EFFECTS.

How can enzymes help?

When combined with lifestyle changes as outlined in the basic plan, taking an anti-inflammatory enzyme such as Serrapeptase and supplementing with digestive enzymes will top up the enzyme deficiency, visibly improving health and aging.

2. Fibrotic build-up

Modern lifestyle can result in diminished enzymes that control the laying down of fibrous tissue. Too much fibrous tissue can become the matrix for Atherosclerosis plaque that clogs arteries. In blood vessels, it causes thrombosis or blood clots; in breast tissue, fibrocystic breast disease and fibromas in the uterus. Proteolytic enzymes, such as Serrapeptase, have been shown in studies to dissolve away these, relieving the inflammation and lowering the associated pain.

3. Blood thinning

There are broadly two reasons for ‘thick’ blood. 1. Chronic inflammation can cause blood cells to ‘clump’ together and 2. An excess of dead (necrotic) and other matter in the blood will cause thickening of the blood. Unlike blood thinners, enzymes clear the inflammation, eat away dead and other matter in the blood and as a result, lower blood viscosity. Aspirin also lowers blood viscosity but not by this mechanism and not without side effects, such as producing hemorrhage. Proteolytic enzymes will not do that in any dosage. If the enzymes have something to work on they will, if they don’t, nothing happens and they will be excreted from the body. Another problem with Aspirin is that it can cause intestinal bleeding. Thousands of people die annually from NSAID’s i.e. Aspirin, Ibuprofen, Naproxen etc.

4. Immune system supportive

The white blood cells are in charge of destroying pathogenic germs in our system. They have little extensions called Fc receptors. These extensions pick up the debris from the dead bug and carry it around awaiting disposition by enzymes. Enzymes also keep the system clear of non-vital proteins to stop their use by germs to ‘hide’ from the white blood cells. The more free enzymes we have in our body, the stronger our immune system becomes.

The formula for successful anti-aging is practically the same for any diseases.

Anti-Aging Program – after 30 days on the program below, you can take the following tests to evaluate whether any other nutrients are needed to get the levels into a safe area.

1. Get tested for C-Reactive Protein (OK less than 10 mg/L)

2. Get tested for Homocysteine (OK less than 6 micro moles per litre of blood)

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Robert Redfern

Prolonged Sitting Is Bad For You

9 Jul

Prolonged Sitting Is Bad for Your Health

 

Earlier this year, a study revealed that older women who spent more than 11 hours of their leisure time being sedentary each day increased their risk of premature death from all causes by 12 percent. Though these findings are daunting, you don’t have to take this news sitting down.

Everyone knows that living a sedentary lifestyle is bad for their health. The effects of prolonged sitting include increased risk of obesity, diabetes, cancer and other diseases. But even if you exercise on a regular basis, prolonged sitting for hours at a time each day can be deadly.

According to the American Institute for Cancer Research, nearly 50,000 new cases of breast cancer per year, and over 40,000 cases of colon cancer, are caused by inactivity.

What’s also important to note is that prolonged sitting, even by those people who do exercise regularly, also increases cancer risk. Standing up and getting away from our desks and armchairs is integral to preventing cancer. That’s because moving gets your circulation in motion and reduces the build-up of markers that raise cancer risk, including inflammation.

Dangers of Screen Time

They found that the people who spent at least four hours of their leisure time in front of a TV or computer were more than twice as likely to have a heart attack or other cardiac event, and they were 50 percent more likely to die of any cause during the four year follow-up.

Weight gain is a big part of the problem. Obviously, if you’re lounging around, you’re burning fewer calories. Plus, research shows that people eat more during screen time.

But it goes beyond calories. In the Scottish study, in addition to higher body mass indexes (BMIs), the “recreational sitters,” as they were called—including those who got some exercise during the day—had higher levels of cholesterol, C-reactive protein (CRP) and other metabolic risk factors.

As for kids, excessive screen time is associated not only with obesity but also with elevated blood pressure, poor sleep, inattention, and in infants and toddlers, delayed language development.

How to Avoid a Sedentary Lifestyle and the Effects of Prolonged Sitting

  1. Limit Your “Screen Time”. Watching TV, working on the computer, and playing video games all count as “screen time” and the dangers that accompany spending too much time plopped down doing any of these things are eye-opening. One study revealed that individuals who spent four or more hours a day sedentary in front of a screen were twice as likely to have a heart attack or other cardiac event.
  2. Take Up an Active Hobby or Sport. One way to get—and stay—active is to pick up a new hobby or sport. Find an activity you enjoy and go for it. If it’s a team sport, all the better. Your teammates will encourage you show up and help keep you on track.
  3. Buy a Pedometer. Pedometers are inexpensive step-counting devices that can be clipped to your belt or pocket. Challenge yourself to walk a little more each and every day. An active and fit goal is to take 10,000 steps each day.
  4. Be More Active at Work. Many people have jobs that involve prolonged sitting in front of computers. But that doesn’t mean you have to sit around on your duff all day. If possible, try to work standing up when you can and walk around while you are on the phone.
  5. Set at Timer and Get Up and Move. Whether you are at work or home, set a timer to go off every 30–60 minutes. Every time it goes off, get up and move around. Even a two minute trip to the restroom or water cooler can get your blood flowing and help you avoid the negative effects of prolonged sitting.
Dr. Whitaker
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