Astaxanthin prevents heart disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s

Astaxanthin prevents heart disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s
dementia

Article by John Phillip

 

 

 

(Natural News)There’s a new kid on the block in the world of natural nutrients that promotes optimal health and has a significant impact in preventing chronic disease development. Astaxanthin
is a red-orange carotenoid pigment derived from microalgae, fish, and
crustaceans that can prevent and even treat conditions that progress from the
negative effects of oxidative stress and antioxidant deterioration. Astaxanthin
is a powerful antioxidant that has been shown to be ten times more powerful than
other pigments and carotenoids including resveratrol. Research details published
in The American Journal of Cardiology provide solid evidence that
astaxanthin supplemented daily can inhibit the damaging effects of oxidative
stress that leads to heart disease, heart attack and
dementia.

Researchers discovered that the potent antioxidant activity
afforded by astaxanthin supplementation results in improved cardiovascular
health. The super nutrient positively influences endothelial function, allowing
the delicate heart vessels to relax. This lowers blood pressure and reduces the
number of inflammatory cells that promote deadly arterial plaque known to reduce
blood flow to the heart muscle.

Astaxanthin is further shown to boost the
heart`s pumping capacity to maintain normal blood flow to the muscle and other
vital organs throughout the body. Researchers found that astaxanthin inhibits
the effects of advanced glycation end products (AGE`s) that form through normal
cellular function and that can increase the incidence of diabetes by altering
glucose metabolism. Scientists have demonstrated that astaxanthin reduces
markers of oxidative stress and inflammation and improves the way blood flows
through the vascular system to lower the risk of heart disease and
stroke.

Compelling research published in the British Journal of
Nutrition
posits the effect of supplemented astaxanthin on development and
progression of Alzheimer`s dementia. One of the significant markers of the
disease is the proliferation of phospholipid hydroperoxides (PLOOH) in the
blood. Excess levels cause free radical damage in the brain that can damage
neural structures and that are associated with progression of Alzheimer`s
dementia.

The study found that supplementing with 6 to 12 mg of
astaxanthin daily for 12 weeks lowered blood levels of PLOOH up to 50%.

Astaxanthin was found to be a potent antioxidant that could easily cross the
blood-brain barrier to dramatically lower oxidative stress.

Study
researchers concluded: “These results suggest that astaxanthin
supplementation results in improved erythrocyte antioxidant status and decreased
phospholipid hydroperoxide levels, which may contribute to the prevention of
dementia.”
Based on an ongoing body of evidence to support the amazing
benefits of astaxanthin, health-minded individuals will want to supplement with
4 to 12 mg daily to support heart and brain health.

 

The Top 12 Safest And Most Effective Pain Relievers

Article from the Healthy Back Institute.

These anti-inflammatories are some of the most powerful, safest, and most effective pain relievers in the world. By feeding your body with the following ingredients, you’ll give your body a powerful and proven one-two punch against inflammation and pain.

Proteolytic  Enzymes: Research indicates these enzymes work throughout your entire body to help it fight inflammation… dissolve scar tissue… cleanse and thin the blood… plus even boost cardiovascular, respiratory and immune function. In other words, proteolytic  enzymes are the final line of defense against disease, illnesses, pain and everything else that happens inside your body. And unfortunately with the nutrient-deficient food we’re eating today, the vast majority of adults today have dangerously low levels of these enzymes!

Turmeric Extract: Turmeric has the unique ability of using its antioxidant powers  to seek out and destroy free radicals in the body which contribute to pain and swelling.  A recent study done at the prestigous Sloan-Kettering Cancer Research Center in New York. In this study they found that Turmeric was more safe and precise than asprin in stopping inflammation by shutting down the COX2 enzyme responsible for pain. And Turmeric caused none of asprin’s typical gastrointestinal irritation!

Devil’s Claw: Numerous studies have proven it’s effectiveness in reducing pain and inflammation.  In fact, one study found that Devil’s  Claw was as effective in treating arthritis pain as common drug, phenylbutazone… which is so strong it’s even used to treat pain in horses!

There have also been several studies on humans which show that Devil’s Claw is as effective as  COX-2 inhibitors… without the deadly side effects! A series of studies completed in Germany found that the main ingredient in Devil’s Claw was indistinguishable from Vioxx in the treatment of chronic low back pain!

Vitamin E: This fat-soluble vitamin is an essential nutrient for humans and is known for it’s powerful anti-oxidant properties. Vitamin E has been shown to be beneficial in numerous situations and conditions such as controlling high blood pressure, maintaining healthy and balanced cholesterol levels and boosting immune system function. Plus… it has also been shown to  improve circulatory conditions, skin health, memory and more. In short, it benefits virtually your entire body!

Rutin: Found naturally in a variety of plants and fruits, this flavanoid has been shown to have a strong anti-inflammatory effect due to it’s powerful anti-oxidant activity. Reducing your inflammation leads to changes throughout your entire body.  Changes such as … a reduction of pain… increased circulation and dozens of other health benefits which ramp up your energy!

L-glutathione: There are literally over 20,000 research studies available on how glutathione can help your body in everything from cancer prevention to more supple skin.  Glutathione is quite literally THE most important antioxidant in your body.  The benefits of increased glutathione are virtually endless, since glutathione is the antioxidant that controls ALL other antioxidants in your body.  It is the ONLY antioxidant in your body that has the ability to eliminate ALL free radicals, not just specific types!

Bromelain: This special natural compound which is extracted from pineapple contains several proteolytic enzymes that have been shown to short-circuit multiple pain pathways in the body.  It has been studied extensively since it’s discovery in 1957 and hundreds of studies have shown it to reduce inflammation, reduce and prevent swelling and remove waste and toxins from the blood. For example, in one study, 77 patients taking Bromelain experienced significant reduction in pain and swelling.

Papain: Papain is unique in that it’s been shown to actually attack tumor cells and boost the immune system!  It also contains a wide range of proteolytic enzymes and works by breaking down proteins. In studies it has been shown to be effective in the treatment of numerous conditions such as diabetes, herpes, cancer and digestion issues like bloating and chronic indigestion. It’s an enzyme very few people have enough of, yet if they did, would reduce the frequency of a lot of common diseases and disorders!

Boswellia Extract: One of the most widely used herbs in Indian medicine, it has been used for centuries by traditional Indian healers to reduce pain and inflammation.  Hundreds of studies have been done proving it’s effectiveness and in addition to being a powerful and safe, natural anti-inflammatory, Boswellia has also been shown to support healthy blood circulation. In a randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled study, 30 patients received 333mg, 3x a day of Boswelia. The group who received the Boswelia had a significant reduction in pain and swelling and experienced an increase in joint mobility and flexibility as compared to the placebo group.

Ginger Extract: Used for over 2,500 years in Asia, Ginger has been used to treat nausea and to reduce pain and inflammation.  It works by decreasing the amount of prostaglandins, which are what cause you to feel pain. In other words, it does what NSAID’s and prescription pain meds do, but in the way nature intended it to do so… instead of forcing it and causing side effects!

Citrus Bioflavanoids: Citrus bioflavanoids aid in the absorption of vitamins and act as important anti-oxidants. They also inhibit collagenase and elastase, the enzymes responsible for the breakdown of connective tissue. That way your joints and ligaments stay as healthy as when you were a teenager! In addition to protecting connective tissues, they also protect against free radical damage

Mojave Yucca (root): The Mojave Yucca root has more benefits than you could shake a stick at! These improvements in your health include migraine relief… decreased blood pressure, cholesterol and triglycerides…better digestion… reduction of muscle spasms… improved blood circulation… treating various skin conditions… healing wounds… and it even promotes shiny and healthy hair.

Nutrients in blueberries may hold the key to fat cell formation and natural weight loss

Article by John Phillip

(NaturalNews) Multiple nutritional studies have demonstrated that blueberries exert a powerful cardio-protective effect due to the high concentration of polyphenols found in the berry. Researchers from the Texas Woman`s University examined the role this amazing fruit plays in the initial development of fat cells that could have a significant impact on weight reduction efforts and obesity. The result of a study presented to the American Society for Nutrition found that blueberries inhibit the creation of new fat cells by altering lipid metabolism. A daily dose of fresh blueberries may hold the key to natural weight reduction.

Researchers at TWU set out to evaluate whether blueberries play a role in the development and differentiation of new baby fat cells or adipocytes that are the primary vehicle for fat storage in the body. In the past, studies have shown powerful natural polyphenols found in plants to inhibit the formation of fat cells and to induce lipolysis, which is the breakdown of fats from cellular storage.

The study used different concentrations of a wild blueberry extract performed on tissue cultures to determine the effect on fat cell initiation. The blueberry polyphenols showed a dose-dependent suppression of fat cell differentiation. Fat cells exposed to the highest polyphenol concentration showed a 73% decrease in lipid breakdown. Cells exposed to the lowest blueberry concentration exhibited a 27% decrease in lipids.

The lead study author, Shiwani Moghe, MS determined that blueberry polyphenols can inhibit a critical path leading to obesity at the molecular level and may play a significant role in blocking the development of new fat cells. The berry may also play a part in releasing fat from adipocytes that will help millions with the desire to lose weight. She noted: “This is a burgeoning area of research. Determining the best dose for humans will be important. The promise is there for blueberries to help reduce adipose tissue from forming in the body.”

Polyphenols from blueberries have been shown to be effective in the fight against arterial hardening or atherosclerosis. Researchers writing in the Journal of Nutrition found that regular blueberry consumption can help prevent harmful plaques and lesions from increasing in size in coronary arteries. A diet containing blueberries for 20 weeks was shown to reduce arterial plaque lesions from 39 to 58 percent, dramatically lowering risk for a deadly heart attack.

Blueberries have been a natural part of the human diet for countless generations and provide a tasty source of plant polyphenols that prevent coronary artery disease and can assist with weight loss efforts. Include four to eight ounces of fresh blueberries to your diet each day or take an organically produced concentrated extract supplement to naturally improve health and prevent fat cell development.

Article References:
http://www.sciencedaily.com/release…
http://www.lef.org/newsletter/2011/…
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_relea…
http://jn.nutrition.org/content/140/9/1628.short

About the author

John Phillip is a Health Researcher and Author who writes regularly on the cutting edge use of diet, lifestyle modifications and targeted supplementation to enhance and improve the quality and length of life. John is the author of ‘Your Healthy Weight Loss Plan’, a comprehensive EBook explaining how to use Diet, Exercise, Mind and Targeted Supplementation to achieve your weight loss goal. 

Five ways to use Aloe Vera Gel for skincare

 

 

 

 

 

 

Five ways to use Aloe Vera Gel for skincare

Article by Elizabeth Walling(NaturalNews) If you`re plagued by severe acne or dry skin and searching for natural relief, then the aloe vera plant may just become your new best friend. Aloe vera gel is a popular remedy used in herbal medicine. It grows in dry climates such as those found in parts of Africa and India.

Various studies have been conducted to examine the benefits of the aloe vera plant and it was found out that aloe vera does in fact have several properties that are effective in treating a variety of skin conditions, cosmetic ailments, hair and scalp problems, and many more. It is also said to be useful in treating wounds and burns, minor skin infections, cysts, diabetes, and elevated blood lipids in humans.

Aloe contains beneficial compounds such as polysaccharides, mannans, anthraquinones, and lectins. The secret of the aloe vera plant is in the transparent, juicy substance contained in its long, thick skinned leaves–the aloe vera gel.

Five Benefits of Using Aloe Vera Gel to Treat Skin Conditions

Suitable for all skin types, aloe vera gel can be used even by people with sensitive skin. Let`s take a look at the benefits of using aloe vera gel to treat skin conditions.

1. Aloe vera gel is great for moisturizing.

For women: Popularly used as a moisturizer by women who use mineral make-up regularly, aloe vera gel is great for face. Applying aloe vera gel on skin prior to application of make-up can prevent the skin from drying.

For men: Aloe vera gel can be used as an aftershave. Its healing properties can treat small cuts caused by shaving.

2. Aloe vera gel is great for treating acne.

Aloe vera gel has antimicrobial properties that kill bacteria and anti-inflammatory properties that reduce skin inflammation. It allows the skin to heal quickly and naturally with minimal scarring. Aloe is moisturizing but doesn`t give skin a greasy feel, so it`s perfect for anyone with an oily complexion.

3. Aloe vera helps fight common problems of skin aging.

Let`s face it: as we get older, everyone begins to worry about the appearance of lines and the loss of elasticity in our skin. The vitamin C and E present in aloe gel can improve our skin`s natural firmness and keep our skin hydrated.

4. Aloe vera can lessen the visibility of stretch marks.

Whether due to a growth spurt, weight change, or pregnancy – many of us are plagued with unsightly stretch marks. These marks appear due to minor tears in the layers of the skin caused by sudden and excessive stretching. Aloe vera gel can help hide these stretch marks by healing these wounds.

5. Aloe vera can be used to treat sunburn.

Aloe vera gel can reduce the pain and swelling you experience during sunburn. It acts as a protective layer on the skin and helps replenish its moisture. When the skin is hydrated, then it will recover faster from the sunburn.

Further Reading:

http://www.bitterrootrestoration.co…

http://www.targetwoman.com/articles…

http://www.nahanniriverherbs.com/262

Aloe Vera id Good!

Prevent and treat hyperthyroidism naturally

 

(NaturalNews) When the thyroid gland goes out of whack and begins secreting large amounts of thyroid hormones, this condition is called hyperthyroidism 

Article by Dr. David Jockers

This condition is classified by increased heart rate, loss of weight, excessive sweating, anxiety & agitation, weight loss, fatigue, tremor, & increased bowel movements. Fortunately, we are beginning to understand this condition better and how to treat it naturally to restore balance and harmony back to the body.

The most common causes for hyperthyroidism are a chronically inflamed thyroid (thyroiditis) and an autoimmune condition called Graves Disease. Both inflammatory and auto-immune disorders are caused by an over-active and under-coordinated immune system. Several key factors such as intestinal dysbiosis, common food & environmental allergens, nutritional habits, vitamin D levels, & heavy metal toxicity must be addressed with any inflammatory and auto-immune disorder.

Dysbiosis is an overpopulation of antagonistic organisms in the gut that damage the intestinal wall allowing food particles to easily pass over and end up in the bloodstream. When undigested food particles are recognized by the immune system and tagged as foreign invaders in the body, the immune system then unleashes an assault of inflammation causing a systemic allergic reaction.

The most common food allergens to avoid include gluten containing grains such as wheat, barley, rye, oats, kamut, & spelt. Soy products, different nuts, eggs, and heavy proteins are often not tolerated well. Obviously all processed and man-made foods need to be avoided at all costs. Other common allergens include those of the nightshade family such as eggplant, tomatoes, & onions. Anyone with auto-immune reactions or excessive inflammation should get tested for food allergies or try an elimination diet to see if the conditions improve.

An anti-inflammatory diet and lifestyle are critical for full recovery from these conditions. Anti-inflammatory foods help to modulate the immune system giving it a more accurate pair of eyes so as to not over-inflame when stimulated. To effectively de-inflame, it is key to completely avoid man-made foods, sugars, and food allergens as listed above. The long chain omega 3 fatty acids EPA and DHA powerfully de-inflame the body by restoring natural balance to the lipid wall of the cell membrane.

Other great anti-inflammatory foods include coconut products, berries, and non-denatured, whey protein from grass-fed cows and goats. This protein source is also loaded with L-glutamine and enhances cellular glutathione stores which are both necessary for rebuilding the gut and de-inflaming the body. Anti-inflammatory herbs such as turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, rosemary, & oregano among others should be used as much as possible.

Certain foods such as cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, & kale among others contain goitrogens in their raw state. Goitrogens block thyroid hormone production and thus help to slow down the thyroid. Therefore anyone suffering from hyperthyroidism would benefit greatly from eating raw cruciferous veggies.

Vitamin D deficiencies are a common day epidemic. Vitamin D helps coordinate the immune response by allowing the body to recognize between foreign and self proteins. This reduces inflammation and auto-immune reactions. A healthy range for vitamin D3 (25-hydroxy cholcalciferol) is between 60-100 ng/ml which is much higher than the medically acceptable 32 ng/ml. Be sure to know your levels and get them over 60 ng/ml. Spend 20-30 minutes a day in the sun or supplement with 10,000-50,000 IU of high quality emulsified vitamin D3 for a period of time until you reach the desired levels.

Other factors that dramatically affect the immune system and thyroid gland include environmental toxicity. This could be in the form of heavy metals, overexposure to pesticides, herbicides, household molds, personal hygiene products, household cleaning agents, tap water, non-stick coated pans, and others.

http://www.nationalnutrition.ca/hea…
http://www.naturalnews.com/030475_i…
http://www.endocrineweb.com/conditi…
http://home-remedies-guide.blogspot…

About the author

Dr. David Jockers owns and operates Exodus Health Center in Kennesaw, Ga. He is a Maximized Living doctor. His expertise is in weight loss, customized nutrition & exercise, & structural corrective chiropractic care. For more information go to www.exodushc.com To find a Maximized Living doctor near you go to www.maximizedliving.com

hyperthyroidism

Use vanilla and other natural remedies to relieve and prevent headaches

 

Article by Tony Isaacs

(NaturalNews) For many people, vanilla may be the key for eliminating headaches. Vanilla extract

contains eugenol, an essential oil that has antiseptic and analgesic properties and that helps unclog blood vessels.

The ancient Egyptians discovered that vanilla beans would cure a headache almost every time regardless of how serious the duration or intensity. Though they did not discover why vanilla worked, they found that it was three times more effective than their previous best treatment, turmeric.

One headache sufferer reported that nothing had worked for his constant headaches of 40 years until he turned to vanilla. He drank a tablespoon of pure vanilla extract in 8 ounces of water before going to bed, and the next morning the usual headache pain was only half its normal intensity. Two days later it was gone completely and hasn’t returned in over a year.

If vanilla does not do the trick, here are some other natural headache remedies to try:

General Headaches

* Dull a tension headache by massaging a few drops of peppermint essential oil into your temples. Peppermint appears to prevent your body from sending pain signals to your central nervous system. According to one German study, peppermint works as well as 1,000 mg of acetaminophen.
* Mix one teaspoon of finely ground cinnamon (called dalchini in India) in one teaspoon water and apply to the forehead. This remedy can be very effective for headaches caused by exposure to cold air.
* Lying down in a dark room, and perhaps getting an hour or two of sleep, will almost always make you feel better.

Migraine Headaches

* To prevent and relieve migraines, grind a 1 inch piece of ginger root and add to an eight ounce glass of fruit juice; drink once daily. For more immediate relief take the piece of ginger root and chew on it. Ginger extract can also be used. Note: Ginger has quite the hot, spicy flavor but can offer quick migraine relief.
* Magnesium deficiency can cause migraines. Up to 95% of us are deficient in magnesium and taking 250 mg or more per day may be just the ticket to relieve migraines.
* Taking a hot shower followed by a cold shower of five minutes each, as hot and as cold as you can stand them, may relieve migraines in as little as 20 minutes. While you are in the shower, think pleasant thoughts and remind yourself that everything is OK and so are you.
* Grind lemon peels and apply as a paste on the forehead. Migraine cures using this remedy has been found very effective and long lasting by many.
* Use one of the following mixtures:
- 1) Mix 200 ml of spinach juice with 300 ml of carrot juice.
- 2) Mix 100 ml each of beet and cucumber juices with 300 ml of carrot juice.
* Drink 2 tablespoons of vinegar
* Grind fresh ripe dark grapes and drink the pure juice.
* Blessed thistle, cayenne, chamomile, fennel, fenugreek, garlic, lobelia, thyme, and wood betony have all been used separately and in combination for migraines.

Sinus Headaches

* Eat a jalapeno pepper as soon as possible to help drain the sinuses and relieve the headache.
* Peppermint steam inhalation acts as a decongestant and can quickly relieve sinus headaches.
* Make a paste from dry ginger with a little water or milk and apply to the forehead.
* Take 10-15 basil leaves, 4 cloves and one teaspoon dried ginger, grind into a paste and apply to the forehead.
* Try a hot footbath along with a cold compress on the forehead with vanilla.

Sources included:

http://www.ehow.com/about_6455375_v…
http://www.tbyil.com/Headache.htm
http://www.squidoo.com/remedies-4-h…

About the author

Tony Isaacs, is a natural health author, advocate and researcher who hosts The Best Years in Life website for those who wish to avoid prescription drugs and mainstream managed illness and live longer, healthier and happier lives naturally..vanilla.

Discover the super-food power of turmeric

Article by Dr. David Jockers:
(NaturalNews) Foods that have an incredible array of health benefits that go well beyond just their nutrient value are considered `super-foods.` Turmeric is an herb native to Southeast Asia that is a true super-food shown to have remarkable healing and anti-inflammatory properties that are just now being discovered.

Cellular inflammation is a common day epidemic that is it is the fundamental cause of degenerative disease in our society. Turmeric has been shown to reduce inflammation & oxidative stress as well as any herbal medicinal ever studied.

Turmeric root is extraordinarily rich in curcuminoid polyphenol anti-oxidants that give it a classic yellow-orange color. The principal crucuminoid is curcumin which is responsible for much of the health benefits attributed to turmeric. The other 2 curcuminoids are desmethoxycurcumin and bis-desmethoxycurcumin.

Blood sugar imbalances and insulin resistant cell membranes are critical factors that promote inflammatory conditions in the body. Curcumin has been shown to stabilize blood sugar and reverse cellular insulin resistance by increasing the number of insulin receptors and improving the receptor binding capacity to insulin.

Curcumin has been shown to activate PPAR (peroxisome proliferator-activator receptor), which is a group of nuclear receptor proteins that regulate gene expression and modulate sugar uptake and utilization from the blood. Curcumin also acts on the liver to decrease the activity of enzymes that release sugar into the blood while increasing activity of enzymes that store sugar. Through these mechanisms, curcumin has been shown to significantly reduce blood glucose and triglyceride levels in diabetic rats.

When blood sugar imbalances occur without sufficient regulation, glucose cross-links are formed with functional proteins. These new molecules are called Advanced Glycolytic Enzymes (AGE`S) that damage cell membranes, vital enzyme systems, and perpetuate inflammatory conditions in the body. Curcumin has been shown to inhibit the formation of these dangerous substances and turn off the inflammatory fires.

Turmeric is the 4th highest anti-oxidant rich herb with an extraordinarily impressive ORAC score of 159,277. These anti-oxidants such as curcumin are very powerful modulators of oxidative stress.

Turmeric also boosts levels of natural cellular anti-oxidants such as glutathione, superoxide dismutase, and catalase. These molecules are critical for the body to limit oxidative stress all day long. The greater the surplus of cellular anti-oxidants the less stress and damage occurs to vital organ systems.

Turmeric`s powerful curcuminoids have been shown to reduce the inflammatory mediating prostaglandins, cytokines and other molecules such as interleukin-6 & tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha). This tips the scales; it pulls the body out of an inflammatory cascade and promotes anti-inflammatory behavior at the cellular level.

Turmeric`s ability to inhibit oxidative stress, AGE formation, & inflammatory prostaglandins across multiple organ systems and multiple biochemical pathways makes it an incredibly powerful anti-aging and performance enhancing aid. Through the above mentioned mechanisms turmeric has been shown to reverse diabetes and improve blood vessel elasticity.

This stabilizes blood pressure and improves cardiovascular function. Additionally, by inhibiting pro-inflammatory prostaglandins it is a powerful pain inhibitor and cancer cell inhibitor. Turmeric improves blood flow and reduces brain inflammation, thus making you cognitively sharper while protecting against Dementia, Alzheimer`s, Parkinson`s and every other neurodegenerative disorder. It has been shown to speed up wound healing from cuts & burns while reducing inflammatory skin disorders such as psoriasis and eczema.

Here is one very tasty way of implementing more Turmeric into your lifestyle:

Anti-Inflammatory Lemonade:
1 cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice:
(4 -6 lemons)
4-6 cups of clean water (to taste)
1 tsp of ground turmeric
1 tsp of cinnamon
Pinch of volcanic salt
(Himalayan Salt)
1/2 tsp of liquid stevia (or to taste)
Optional: 1 tsp ground/fresh ginger

7 Tips to NEVER Get Sick Again

7 Tips to NEVER Get Sick Again

Understand the REAL cause of sickness, and increase your immune system with these tips

Article by Mike Geary - Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Nutrition Specialist
Author –
The Truth about Six Pack Abs

Note: The tips in this article can work anytime of the year to keep you healthy and prevent you from getting sick…not just in the winter!

First of all, let’s clear up a BIG misconception about why more people get sick in the winters compared to warmer times of the year.  I can’t help but bite my lip when I hear well intentioned mothers and grandmothers tell their kids to “bundle up” before going outside so that they don’t “catch a cold”.  So many people still have this huge misconception that cold temperatures can make you sick…

However… This is blatantly false!

In fact, did you know that there are multiple studies that actually show that cold exposure increases your immunity?  It’s true!  One study I read recently even showed that cold therapy such as ice water baths or other cold water exposure stimulates an improvement in your immune system.

So are there really more germs and cold & flu viruses floating around in the winter?  No, of course not!  In fact, some studies I’ve read have indicated that there might actually be a slightly larger amount of cold and flu viruses all around us in the summer due to more favorable conditions for their survival on surfaces.

So then why do more people get sick in the winter?  Well, I’ll give you a hint… in winter in the northern hemisphere (Canada, US, Europe, etc) sicknesses spike, but at the same time, it’s summer in the southern hemisphere (South America, Australia, New Zealand, etc), and while sicknesses are spiking in the northern hemisphere, sicknesses are at their lowest point in the southern hemisphere since it’s their summer.

And then when we’re in summer in the northern hemisphere and most sicknesses go away, it’s winter in the southern hemisphere, so colds, flu, and other sicknesses spike in the southern hemisphere.

So is it the warm temperatures that decreases sickness?  Nope… It’s actually all about the strength of the suns rays, and how much vitamin D your body produces!

There are 2 theories that many people pass around as to why more colds, flu, and sickness occur in the winter depending on which part of the world you’re in…

Theory 1.  It may have to do with people generally spending more time indoors in the winter and thereby being exposed to more germs in enclosed buildings.  It’s a nice theory, but people are generally still in offices from 9-5 all week long whether it’s summer or winter.  As you’ll see, theory 2 is the REAL culprit!

Theory 2.   The reason people get sick more in the winter is mostly due to a drastic reduction in their body’s production of Vitamin D, which is directly responsible for how strong their immune system is. 

We don’t get much sunlight in the winter generally, and therefore, Vitamin D levels in the body drop significantly, which reduces immunity. Most people don’t realize how important sunlight and Vitamin D levels really are towards so many functions inside their body, including immune system and hormone production and balance.

Even for people that get outdoors in the winter often, if you live in the northern hemisphere to the North of an imaginary line from approximately Atlanta to Los Angeles, the suns rays are not strong enough in the winter months (approximately November through end of February) to stimulate any significant Vitamin D production inside your body.

This aspect of lack of Vitamin D production and lowered immune strength in the winter months is what is actually the REAL reason why more sickness goes around in the winter.  So you can silently chuckle to yourself the next time someone tells you to “bundle up” so you don’t catch a cold.

So how can we bolster your immune system so that your body can fight off sickness before it gets a hold of you?

So here is my little ritual that I’ve been using for a few years now and really seems to keep me from getting any colds, flu, or any sickness at all.

As a matter of fact, I can’t remember the last time I was legitimately sick. I think it’s been 6 or 7 years since I’ve actually been sick.

Every time I feel a cold or something starting to come on, I do this ritual, strengthen my immune system, and my body always fights it off before I actually get full-blown sick.
1. Focus on Vitamin D (but NOT in pill form or “fortified” foods)

You need to be careful about artificial forms of vitamin D in many vitamin pills, as artificial vitamin forms are almost always either ineffective or possibly even detrimental compared to natural forms.

For this reason, you need to get your vitamin D naturally. The sun is the best source, and leads to a powerful strengthening of your immune system when your body can naturally produce Vitamin D from moderate sun exposure. Here is a previous article I did on how to get sun exposure in a healthy way without damaging your skin

I know not everybody can take a tropical vacation every winter, but if you can, it’s best to try to take it right smack dab in the middle of the winter (when your vitamin D levels have dropped to their lowest)… getting even a few days of good sun closer to the equator in the middle of winter can really help increase your vitamin D and strengthen your immune system.

But, I understand that’s not possible for everybody’s schedule based on either work or finances, so…

Since you may not be going on a tropical vacation this winter, how can you still keep Vitamin D levels from falling dangerously low in your body?

Well, the best food sources of natural Vitamin D are egg yolks, fatty fish, organ meats, and some mushrooms (some portobella mushrooms and maitake mushroom are fairly good sources of vitamin D).

But what I do to make sure I’m at least getting a decent amount of the best absorbed vitamin D is to take a SMALL dose of cod liver oil daily in the deepest months of winter to make sure my vitamin D levels don’t fall too low.  Make sure to take only small doses of cod liver oil (enough for 50% to 100% DV of vitamin D), as large doses can give you an overdose of Vitamin A.   I take about half to 2/3rds of the recommended dose on the bottle.

FYI – The synthetic version of Vitamin D is ergocalciferol (vitamin D2), while the natural form is cholecalciferol (vitamin D3). By the way, fortified milk has added D2, not D3… so that’s NOT a good source.  In fact, I don’t trust any “fortified” foods at all, including crappy breakfast cereals which claim to be good sources of vitamin D… not so!

2. Garlic to strengthen your immune system!

Garlic is one of the most potent of all superfoods!  Not only does high dose garlic go back thousands of years for treatment of sickness, but recent studies back up the legendary claims.

What’s best though — “aged” garlic pills, whole garlic in foods, capsules, etc?  I can’t seem to find a consensus on this one, so what I simply try to do is use a variety of sources, including garlic powder on a lot of my foods, fresh chopped garlic in meals, and also a garlic capsule or two each day.
3. Kombucha tea strengthens immune system

Kombucha tea is a fermented tea (naturally effervescent) that contains billions of friendly gut organisms (probiotics) that help to strengthen your immune system by bolstering your levels of good organisms in your gut.

Remember that 70% of your immune system lies in your gut and the health of the friendly organisms in there to protect you against pathogens and sickness.

You can find bottles of Kombucha tea at health food stores such as Whole Foods.

When I feel any sickness coming on, I start loading up on Kombucha tea, drinking it throughout the day. It has a strong taste, so I mix it with my normal iced teas at 1/3 Kombucha and 2/3 regular iced tea.

4. Green tea, Chamomile Tea, and other teas

There is evidence that green tea and chamomile tea can help aid in strengthening the immune system.

Even if the effect is small, you can’t go wrong because both are loaded with powerful antioxidants unique to each tea.

For that reason, I try to drink a couple cups of green tea with a small bit of raw honey early in the day, and then at night, I have a couple cups of chamomile tea.

This isn’t a bad idea even for a regular habit, but it’s even more important when I feel a sickness possibly coming on.  I also drink a lot of other teas too such as Rooibos tea, which is thought to be even higher in antioxidants than green tea.

 
5. Loading up on antioxidants

We already know how important antioxidants are to overall health as well as immune system support.

For this reason, I make sure to really load up on antioxidant-rich fruits, berries, and veggies to help prevent sickness.

I also make sure to take my daily Longevity Antioxidant blend from my friends at Prograde, which is a powerful synergistic antioxidant mixture of green tea, wolfberry, acai berry, Biovin grape, coffeeberry, and pomegranate.

6. Light exercise (yes – light exercise, not hard)

When you feel a sickness coming on, a super-high intensity workout is not a good idea, as hard training forces the body to do a lot of recovery, this at a time when your body needs all of it’s efforts on trying to fight off the oncoming sickness.

Although I usually recommend high intensity training, when sickness might be coming on, it’s just a good idea to get some light exercise instead.

Personally, I like to get outside for some fresh air and go for a hike or go snowshoeing. These aren’t very strenuous for me, so they won’t cause my body to be forced to do a lot of recovery… but just getting out in the fresh air and getting the circulation going I feel is good to help the body fight off the sickness.
7. Avoid ALL processed foods and sweetened soft drinks

If you’re serious about your health and getting lean for life, this should be an everyday rule for you anyway (except maybe for cheat meals)…

However, when you might have a sickness coming on, this is no time to bombard your body with processed foods, inflammatory omega-6 oils (soybean oil, corn oil, etc), fried foods, high fructose corn syrup, refined sugars, and chemical additives.

All of these force your body to do extra work to deal with all of this junk and the internal inflammation that they cause in your body.

Instead, this is a time that you need to give your body only wholesome unprocessed foods that are only 1 ingredient…fruits, berries, veggies, eggs, nuts, seeds, grass-fed meats, etc.

These 7 tips will go a LONG way to helping to ward off that sickness that is trying to get a hold of you… Here’s to a healthy strong body!

Note: I’m not a doctor, and none of these tips are prescriptions for any individual person… they are simply the steps I’ve personally used over the years to successfully fight off sickness pretty much every single time.  Again, I haven’t been legitimately sick in at LEAST 6 or 7 years now that I use these steps!

Ling Zhi helps people get off steroids, controls asthma, stops adrenal fatigue and much more

Ling Zhi helps people get off steroids, controls asthma, stops adrenal fatigue and much more

Article by Christopher Gussa

(NaturalNews) Ling Zhi (Ganoderma or Reishi mushroom) has been recorded as having the most extensive and effective healing powers in all of Traditional Chinese Medicine. It is indicated for adrenal fatigue, coronary heart disease, bronchial asthma, insomnia, impotence, hay fever, dizziness, stomach ulcers, depression (by addressing the shen or spirit) and addresses debility from long-term illness.

Today, Reishi has various applications including lowering blood pressure, stimulating liver actions, blood cleansing, and becoming a super powerful immune booster while helping the body fight the effects of stress.

Perhaps the most amazing thing is that Ling Zhi is the only known source of a group of triterpenes known as ganoderic acids, which have a molecular structure almost identical to steroid hormones. This would explain why it is such a powerful adrenal fatigue and hypothyroid remedy.

A 2005 press release from Decision News Media stated, “An oral combination of three Chinese herbs using 70% Ling Zhi with 20% of the common herb, Ku Shen, (radix sophorae flavascentis) used for lung infections and 10% licorice root. This formula is proven to be as effective as Prednisone at alleviating asthma symptoms but without such severe side effects, report Chinese and American researchers.” The release refers to a double-blind, placebo-controlled study with a prednisone group and a group taking only the Ling Zhi formula. This is published in the September 2005 Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. This formula is available today at herb stores in an extract powder called Asthma-dren.

This is absolutely huge news! Getting your adrenals to make more cortisol on their own is the best thing you can do to modulate any inflammation in your body and to stop adrenal fatigue. This action of Reishi can also help get an under active thyroid back on track when combined with other herbs.

Ling Zhi taken as a single herb can be of great benefit to almost anyone. However, it is noteworthy how the energy of Lin Zhi can be addressed to various organ systems in the body by adding other herbs, both tonic and medicinal.

Three tonic herbs work incredibly well with Reishi for overall health:
They are He Shou Wu,
( http://www.naturalnews.com/026786_H… l)
Siberian Gensing,
( http://www.naturalnews.com/024235_g… )
and Shilajit
( http://www.naturalnews.com/029498_S… l )

As for medicine, the formula called Asthma-dren, as mentioned in paragraph 4, is a very good example as it uses Ku Shen to address Ling Zhi to the lungs.

As another example, a TCM formula called Zhi-adren is used for adrenal fatigue and hypothyroid. This formula combines 60% Ling Zhi with 15% Ci Wu Jia (Siberian Ginseng), 15% Shan Yao (Chinese Yam), 7% Shan Zhu Yu (Cornus Fruit) and 3% Gan Cao (licorice root). This works by combining natural steroid producing herbs while addressing them to the area of the adrenals. This formula has proven to be extremely effective in both adrenal fatigue and hypothyroid. Zhi-adren is now available at many herb stores.

Reishi is recognized in preventing spontaneous death in cancer patients. It is cardio-tonic as it improves blood flow and reduces oxygen consumption in the heart muscle. The mycelium of Reishi contains high levels of polysaccharides, which induce the production of interferon. The list goes on and on.

This strange looking fungus has so many adaptive uses that there is just not enough room here to cover it. We can just thank God for another amazing herb created for the service of man’s health.

Sources: (The first two are very good videos on Ling Zhi)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fQV-…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lsj7…
http://acupuncturetoday.com/mpacms/…
http://www.nutraingredients-usa.com…

About the author

Christopher Gussa founded Plant Cures Inc. which handcrafts over 150 Serious Herbal Medicine Products for Specific Disorders all created through clinical application. Their products are for Serious Disease and also Powerful Tonic Health

The healing power of honey

Article by Kelly Joyce Neff, citizen journalist

 

NaturalNews) Raw honey – which has not been pasteurized or filtered, and ideally taken directly from the hive – is a treasure chest of nutritional value and medicinal remedies. It contains an abundance of vitamins and minerals and is a natural and powerful medicine, both internally and externally.The list of honey’s beneficial functions is a long one. Honey increases calcium absorption; can increase hemoglobin count and treat or prevent anemia caused by nutritional factors; can help arthritic joints, when combined with apple cider vinegar; fights colds and respiratory infections of all kinds; can help to boost gastrointestinal ulcer healing; works as a natural and gentle laxative; aids constipation, allergies and obesity; provides an array of vitamins and minerals; and supplies instant energy without the insulin surge caused by white sugar. Many have found raw honey helpful for its positive effects against allergies and hay fever, and one or two teaspoons last thing at night can help with insomnia. As an antiseptic, honey is also a drawing agent for poisons from bites or stings or infected wounds, and has outperformed antibiotics in treatments for stomach ulcerations, gangrene, surgical wound infections, surgical incisions and the protection of skin grafts, corneas, blood vessels and bones during storage and shipment.

“Raw honey is exceptionally effective internally against bacteria and parasites. Plus, raw honey contains natural antibiotics, which help kill microbes directly. Raw honey, when applied topically, speeds the healing of tissues damaged by infection and/or trauma. It contains vitamins, minerals and enzymes, as well as sugars, all of which aid in the healing of wounds.”

So writes Dr. Cass Igram, D.O. in The Survivor’s Nutritional Pharmacy. In a fascinating modern development, scientists and doctors are beginning to rediscover the effectiveness of honey as a wound treatment. In recent years, honey has been used effectively in clinical settings for the treatment of fist-sized ulcers extending to the bone, as well as for first, second and third degree burns. Complete healing has been reported without the need for skin grafts and with no infection or muscle loss. It can be applied full strength to such conditions, covered with a sterile bandage, and changed daily. When the wounds are clean, honey acts as a healer. This also is the same procedure for infected wounds, ulcerations and impetigo. Garlic honey can also be applied directly to infected wounds, which will help clean up the area of infection.

Dr. Peter Molan, professor of biochemistry at Waikato University, New Zealand, has been at the forefront of honey research for 20 years. He heads the university’s Honey Research Unit, which is internationally recognized for its expertise in the antimicrobial properties of honey. Clinical observations and experimental studies have established that honey has effective antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Astonishingly, it painlessly removes pus, scabs and dead tissue from wounds and stimulates new tissue growth. “Randomized trials have shown that honey is more effective in controlling infection in burn wounds than silver sulfadiazine, the antibacterial ointment most widely used on burns in hospitals,” explains Dr. Molan.

Dr. Molan believes that if honey were used from the start in cases of septicemia, there would be far less tissue damage resulting. “The remarkable ability of honey to reduce inflammation and mop up free radicals should halt the progress of the skin damage like it does in burns, as well as protecting from infection setting in”, says Dr. Molan. “At present, people are turning to honey when nothing else works. But there are very good grounds for using honey as a therapeutic agent of first choice.”

Researchers believe that the therapeutic potential of honey is grossly underutilized. With increasing interest in the use of alternative therapies and as the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria spreads, honey may finally receive its due recognition as a wound healer.

Indeed, it works: Raw honey makes a sterile, painless and effective wound dressing. Apply it directly to open cuts, abrasions and burns, and cover it with a piece of gauze. The results will occur quicker than with conventional alternatives, such as salves and creams.

Honey is also exceptionally effective for respiratory ailments. One Bulgarian study of almost 18,000 patients found that it improved chronic bronchitis, asthmatic bronchitis, chronic and allergic rhinitis and sinusitis. It’s an effective treatment for colds, flu, respiratory infections and a generally depressed immune system. Whereas sugar shuts down the immune system, a good quality honey will stimulate it into action.

Here are some more ways to utilize the healing power of honey:

BURNS – Apply freely over burns. It cools, removes pain and aids fast healing without scarring. Apart from being a salve and an antibiotic, bacteria simply cannot survive in honey.

BED WETTING – A teaspoon of honey before bed aids water retention and calms fears in children.

INSOMNIA – A dessertspoon of honey in a mug of warm milk aids sleep and works wonders.

HYPERACTIVITY – Replace all use of white sugar with honey. White sugar is highly stimulating with no food qualities. Honey provides the energy without the “spike.”

NASAL CONGESTION – Place a dessertspoon of honey in a basin of water and inhale fumes after covering your head with a towel over the basin. Very effective!

FATIGUE – Dissolve a dessertspoon of honey in warm water or quarter honey balance of water in a jug and keep in the fridge. Honey is primarily fructose and glucose, so it’s quickly absorbed by the digestive system. Honey is a unique natural stabilizer: Ancient Greek athletes took honey for stamina before competing and as a reviver after competition.

FACIAL DEEP CLEANSER – Mix honey with an equal quantity of oatmeal, and apply as a face pack. Leave on for half an hour, then wash it off. Great as a deep cleanser for acne and other unwanted blemishes.

POOR DIGESTION – Mix honey with an equal quantity of apple cider vinegar and dilute to taste with water. This is also wonderful for the joints – and promotes weight loss.

HAIR CONDITIONER – Mix honey with an equal quantity of olive oil, cover head with a warm tower for half an hour then shampoo off. Feeds hair and scalp. Your hair will never look or feel better!

SORE THROATS – Let a teaspoon of honey melt in the back of the mouth and trickle down the throat. Eases inflamed raw tissues.

FOR STRESS – Honey in water is a stabilizer, calming highs and raising lows. Use approximately 25 percent honey to water.

ANEMIA – Honey is the best blood enricher by raising corpuscle content. The darker the honey, the more minerals it contains.

FOOD PRESERVATIVE – If you replace the sugar in cake and cookie recipes with honey, they’ll stay fresher longer due to honey’s natural antibacterial properties. Reduce liquids in the mixture by about one-fifth to allow for the moisture present in the in honey.

BABY’S BOTTLE – Four teaspoons of honey to a baby’s bottle of water is an excellent pacifier and multivitamin additive. If the baby’s motions are too liquid, then reduce the honey by half a teaspoon; if too solid increase by half a teaspoon. (Caution: Don’t give raw honey to babies under 1 year old; it’s just too rich.) For teething, honey rubbed on a baby’s gums is also a mild sedative and anesthetic.

OSTEOPOROSIS – Research has shown that a teaspoon of honey per day aids calcium utilization and prevents osteoporosis – probably not a bad idea for anyone over 50.

LONGEVITY – The most long-lived people in the world are all regular users of honey. An interesting fact, yet to be explained, is that beekeepers suffer less from cancer and arthritis than any other occupational group worldwide.

MIGRAINE – Use a dessertspoon of honey dissolved in half a glass of warm water. Sip at the start of a migraine attack, and, if necessary, repeat after another 20 minutes.

CONJUNCTIVITIS – Dissolve honey in an equal quantity of warm water. When cooled, apply as a lotion or eye bath.

COUGH MIXTURE – Combine 6 ounces (170 grams) liquid honey, 2 ounces (55 grams) glycerin and the juice of two lemons. Mix well. Bottle and cork firmly, and use as required.

Raw honey may become granulated, as some does after a week and another maybe only after several years. If the granulations bother you, simply place the honey into a pan of hot water (not boiling) and let it stand until becoming liquid again.

Kelly Joyce Neff has an interdisciplinary degree in Celtic Studies which includes work in cultural anthropology, history, linguistics, language, and literature. She is a traditional midwife and herbalist, a reiki master, and an active craftsperson. She lives in San

Francisco.