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Sunday, November 30, 2008

GM Crops Threaten Human Fertility and Health

A long-term feeding study commissioned by the Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety, managed by the Austrian Federal Ministry of Health, Family and Youth, and carried out by Veterinary University Vienna, confirms genetically modified (GM) corn seriously affects reproductive health.

Non-GMO advocates, who have warned about this infertility link along with other health risks, now seek an immediate ban of all GM foods and GM crops to protect the health of humankind and the fertility of women around the world. Read the entire article.

What we can do is simply try to avoid the GMO contaminants altogether and be extremely vigilant of how we spend our money and which companies we are choosing to support. Read five simple and effective ways to decrease your contact with untested, toxic and dangerous GMOs.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Relief For Bad Knees

Arthroscopic surgery may be no better than nonsurgical treatment to relieve arthritic pain in the knee, concludes a study in the Sept. 11 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Researchers treated 178 people who had moderate to severe chronic knee pain with both physical therapy and medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen; 86 participants also had arthroscopic surgery. After two years, both groups reported nearly the same levels of pain, disability and stiffness.

“Exercise, weight loss, physical therapy and over-the-counter pain medications are first-line alternatives to surgery,” says John H. Wilckens, M.D., an orthopedist at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “Arthroscopy may provide some benefit to a very select group.”

Source: AARP article.

Having rheumatoid arthritis, I find essential oils of great comfort since they are safe and easy to use topically. Tei Fu Lotion has been such a benefit to the amount of pain I need to deal with and I've avoided even over the counter medications with this topical relief along with my supplement program. My neighbor has had knee problems and she orders three of these at a time and has shared it with others also. I love it when you can find something "simple" to make such a big difference in your life.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Detoxing The Bathroom For Health

Rub a dub dub, what's that in your tub? Soap scum may be annoying, but it's not as gross as what's in some common bathroom cleaners. And since skin-care and hair-care products aren't always quite as beautiful as they appear on the surface, we'll show you what look out for in those products, too. Get tips from the entire article.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Fight The Flu

The flu strikes up to one-fifth of Americans each year, according to the National Institutes of Health. A yearly flu vaccine may help you dodge the dreaded virus, but gentle herbs and supplements also offer targeted prevention.

Remedy How it works Dose
Beta-carotene Feeds the mucous membranes so they can better slough off viral invaders in the nose. Drink an 8-ounce glass of beta-carotene-rich carrot juice daily. Or take an antioxidant formula with 10,000 IUs beta-carotene every day.
Echinacea Boosts the immune system, preparing it for battle against viruses. Take two dropperfuls of a tincture combination of Echinacea angustifolia and E. purpurea every 2-3 hours the first day you start feeling sick. If you don't feel better the next morning, resume dosing.
Rosehips Strengthens immunity with antioxidant properties. To make a tea, steep 2 tablespoons of dried rosehips in a cup of boiling water for 10 minutes. Drink a couple of times a day during flu season.
Vitamin C Decreases oxidative stress on cells, making them more resistant to viral intruders. During flu season, take 1,000 mg three times a day. Choose a supplement with bioflavonoids, which increase C's efficacy.
Zinc Works similarly to vitamin C. Take 30 mg a day during flu season.

Consult your health care practitioner for advice before taking any supplement.

Source: Delicious Living

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Rosehips For Osteoarthritis

Powder made from rosehips is more effective at reducing osteoarthritis pain than Tylenol, according to a study conducted by researchers from the University of California, and Fredericksburg Hospital, Copenhagen University Library and the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, and published in the journal Osteoarthritis and Cartilage.

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis - painful joint inflammation - and is believed to be triggered by injury to cartilage. Rheumatoid arthritis, a different condition, occurs when the body's immune system attacks its own joint tissue. An estimated 21 million people in the United States alone suffer from osteoarthritis, with studies suggesting that nearly 50 percent of the population will experience symptoms of the disease by age 65, while 80 percent will have asymptomatic arthritis.

Researchers reviewed the results of three prior studies on a total of 287 patients and found that after an average of three months, powdered rosehip was nearly three times more effective at reducing osteoarthritis pain than paracetamol, also known as acetaminophen and marketed as Tylenol, Panadol, Anacin-3, Tempra and Datril. Combinations of paracetamol with other drugs are also sold under a variety of brand names.

Rosehip was also 40% more effective than the common alternative osteoarthritis remedy glucosamine.

Read the entire article.
Purchase Rosehips in capsules.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Stop Smoking Drug Risks Suicide

the popular anti-smoking drug Chantix has been linked to an elevated risk of suicide. This warning comes months after the FDA first expressed concerns over the psychiatric effects of the drug.

Chantix helps people quit smoking by simulating the effects of nicotine in the brain, while at the same time making real nicotine less effective. As early as November 2007, the FDA warned that many people were experiencing changes in emotions and behavior, including depression and suicidal thoughts, within weeks or even days of starting the drug. By February, the agency had strengthened its message, saying, "it appears increasingly likely that there may be an association between Chantix and serious neuropsychiatric symptoms."

At least 40 cases of suicide and another 400 attempted suicides have been reported among those taking Chantix.

Read the entire article.
Quit smoking with herbs: Lobelia.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Acne and Milk

We all know the advertisements where celebrities sport the milk mustache and ask `Got Milk?`. However studies suggest that a more accurate question would be: `Got milk? Got acne?` This article explores how hormones and allergenic proteins in milk could contribute to acne.

At least three large-scale studies reported in the American Journal of Dermatology found a link between drinking milk and acne. NaturalNews reported about a study that found those who drank two or three glasses of milk a day had 44% higher chance of developing severe acne.

Most studies on acne and milk were conducted on teenagers. But anecdotal evidence from thousands of adults suggests that milk also affects adult acne. As many adult acne victims report their skin gets better after quitting milk and dairy products.

But how can a glass of `nature`s perfect food` wreck such disaster on your skin? Read the entire article.

Friday, November 21, 2008

How Food Cravings Work

Food cravings don't dictate everything we eat. We are naturally driven to eat for survival, but cravings go beyond the simple need to quench hunger.

In fact, many times, hunger doesn't play a prominent role in where cravings come from since most revolve around the hedonic, or pleasurable, aspects of dining. Rather, they're a confounding cocktail of body, brain and chemicals that can send us dashing to the grocery store for a tin of anchovies in the middle of the afternoon.

Just about everyone gets food cravings, but gender differences do exist. In general, women are more likely than men to experience food cravings. Read the entire article on how food cravings work.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Waistline Inches or Pounds

If you’re only looking at the numbers on your scale or calculating your body mass index (BMI), you might not be as healthy as you think. Here’s why: Both methods measure your body’s overall weight—not where fat has amassed on your body. And believe it or not, location matters.

Research continues to show that fat that accumulates at your waistline may be more dangerous for long-term health than fat that shows up elsewhere on the body. A recent study found that middle-age women with a waist measurement of more than 35 inches increased their risk of dying from cardiovascular disease by 92 percent and cancer by 53 percent. Read the entire article.

Get more details on measuring your waistline and measurements for men also in this article.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Feeling Tired? Moody?

By Dr. Mark Stengler

The epidemic of exhaustion affecting so many Americans today may have at its root a condition that is common and easy to correct — yet that condition often goes unrecognized by medical doctors. The culprit is adrenal fatigue (AF).

Adrenal glands produce stress hormones in response to stressful situations. With AF, the hormone response mechanism is so overwhelmed that it becomes ineffective. AF is usually triggered bylong periods of mental, emotional, or physical stress, and it is worsened by poor nutrition and unhealthful lifestyle choices.

In my estimation, 20% of Americans suffer from some degree of AF. And I find that this disorder often causes — or contributes to — the development of numerous other illnesses, particularly chronic fatigue syndrome and diabetes. When AF is correctly diagnosed and treated, the other conditions are often relieved as well.

Read the entire article.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Tips for 55+ Health Problems

Very soon the first tide of baby boomers becomes eligible for Medicare. According to an American Medical Association report, some 60 percent of the nation’s physicians say they’ll be forced to limit the number of Medicare patients they can treat.

Can our health care system handle the flood? Probably not. That is why more seniors are turning to natural health solutions. Getting at the root cause instead of suppressing symptoms is their best hope for good health.

There are several common health issues those in the boomer category face. Some of the top concerns I see in my office are about circulatory issues such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol, memory and brain health, digestive problems, eye health (glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration). Read the entire article.

All products mentioned are available from The Herbs Place at wholesale prices.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Mushrooms Are Super Food

Mushrooms have been used for thousands of years by traditional eastern healers but only recently by western healers in advanced medicine. Mushrooms are often classified as a vegetable or an herb, but they are actually fungi.

Mushrooms provide our bodies with the nutrients, proteins, minerals, and vitamins it needs to generate energy and repair cells. They are one of the most remarkable elements for a healthy immune system. They have been used to cure or improve eyesight, hearing, circulation, impotency, stop migraine headaches, tumors, influenza, and even cancer.

Mushrooms are low in carbohydrates, calories, and sodium and are cholesterol and fat free. High in fiber and protein, mushrooms are also rich in B vitamins to help maintain a healthy metabolism.

Mushrooms are an excellent source of potassium, a mineral that helps lower elevated blood pressure and reduces the risk of stroke. One medium portabella mushroom has even more potassium than a banana or a glass of orange juice.

Mushrooms are a rich source of riboflavin, niacin, and selenium. Selenium is an antioxidant that works with vitamin E to protect cells from the damaging effects of free radicals. Male health professionals who consumed twice the recommended daily intake of selenium cut their risk of prostate cancer by 65 percent.

Regular ingestion of mushrooms over long periods of time has been proven to decrease the amount of cancerous cells in the body. They not only fight and reduce cancerous cells and tumors, but they help prevent more of those cells from forming in the body.

Read entire article.
One great immune-enhancing formula: Immune Stimulator.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

New Non-Drug Approach to ADD and ADHD

Tom Stone has been conducting groundbreaking research into the root causes of ADD/ADHD and anxiety in both children and adults. Stone's methods for treating ADHD and ADD (which don't involve the use of psychoactive or pharmaceutical drugs) recently underwent double-blind, placebo controlled clinical trials, and the results were remarkable. Some children showed near complete relief of their symptoms in just one or two sessions.

A 15-minute video of a popular morning show on Chicago's ABC affiliate features Tom Stone and more information on this technique. There is footage conducted during the clinical studies, and comments from the parents of the children who participated in the study. View video here.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Effects of Noise Pollution

If you have ever lived or worked somewhere that was noisy, you know that it can have a seriously negative impact on your life. While we move ahead with our technological society, there are all sorts of pollution that we didn't have to deal with 50 years, and it is increasingly getting worse. Flights, machines, TV, radio…how often do really get a moment's peace.

Studies are beginning to reveal that noise-related stress can negatively affect our health and wellbeing, sometimes significantly so. According to a recent report from the World Health Organization, noise pollution is causing hearing problems such as tinnitus, causing disturbed sleep, and triggering stress hormones which can play a major role in many illnesses.

Unwanted noise also makes us feel powerless and potentially more aggressive. The risk of having a heart attack or stroke is increased; in fact it is estimated that 3% of ischeamic heart disease, which is the most common cause of death, is caused by noise. Read the entire article.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Cell Phones - Epidemic of Brain Tumors

A new review of more than 100 studies on the safety of mobile phones has concluded that cellular devices are poised to cause an epidemic of brain tumors that will kill more people than smoking or asbestos.

The review was conducted by neurosurgeon Vini Khurana, who has received more than 14 awards in the past 16 years, who made headlines worldwide with his warnings. He called upon the industry to immediately work to reduce people's exposure to the radiation from mobile phones.

According to Khurana, research demonstrates that long-term use of mobile handsets, more than 10 years, can double the risk of contracting brain cancer. While a number of studies have concluded that there is no such risk, Khurana said that most of those studies only examined short-term use. But because a brain tumor can take 10 years to develop, studies without a long follow-up period are largely meaningless. Read the entire article.

Related Articles:
Mobile Phones and Skin Problems
Mobile Phones More Dangerous Than Smoking
Cell Phone Precautions - Analysis of Studies

Saturday, November 8, 2008

New Car Smell Toxic

All these years, while we were being offered safety first, last and front, side and rear ways, hardly anyone in the vehicle industry had given much thought to what actually was in that perfume de profit, the new car smell that car buyers sought and bought.

The new car smell comes from toxic gases. Not only that, but like a two dollar cologne, the effects can linger and linger for years, stinking up not only your shiny new car, but the reputation of the entire vehicle industry itself.

Who says so? Just about everyone in the vehicle business these days. In a 2006 industry-awakening report entitled "Toxic At Any Speed: Chemicals in Cars and the Need for Safe Alternatives", this independent green organization declared that much of the material in most car interiors that produce that new car smell is made with toxic chemicals known to pose major public health risks.

The report says these chemicals give off gases that not only contaminate the air, but also coat interior surfaces with toxic "fog," generally seen as that new car film common to new car interior windshields and windows. Read entire article

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Zinc, Acne and Good Health

According to the American Zinc Association, zinc seals and protects skin:

"Zinc is essential for healthy skin. As a drying agent and astringent, zinc oxide has been used for generations to soothe diaper rash and relieve itching. And zinc is a natural sun screen, protecting chapped lips and skin from the sun's harmful rays. Zinc sulfate is effective in treating some cases of acne. And in a water-based solution, zinc sulfate helps remedy cold sores. Zinc also improves healing of wounds, like surgical incisions, burns and other skin irritations. Used as an anti-inflammatory, zinc soothes skin and skin tissue. Poison ivy, sunburn, blisters and gum disease are all improved when treated with zinc. It is even a natural insect repellent. And zinc stimulates the transport of Vitamin A from the liver to the skin, helping to protect body tissue from damage."

Sounds like it would do a lot of good besides the acne benefits mentioned in medical research results. Read the research article.

Zinc - Essential for Human Health

Zinc is an essential trace element for humans, animals and plants. It is vital for many biological functions and plays a crucial role in more than 300 enzymes in the human body. The adult body contains about 2-3 grams of zinc. Zinc is found in all parts of the body: it is in organs, tissues, bones, fluids and cells. Muscles and bones contain most of the body’s zinc (90%). Particularly high concentrations of zinc are in the prostate gland and semen.

Zinc is necessary for growth and cell division, fertility, menstrual problems and PMS, and the immune system. It's vital for skin, hair and nails; taste, smell and appetite; and is used in the treatment of anorexia.

Zinc is also used as an anti-inflammatory agent and can help sooth the skin tissue, particularly in cases of poison ivy, sunburn, blisters and certain gum diseases. Zinc may also protect from night blindness and prevent the development of cataracts.

Sources of dietary zinc are red meat, poultry, fish and seafood, whole cereals and dairy products. Zinc is most available to the body from meat. The bioavailability of plant-based foods is generally lower due to dietary fibre and phytic acid which inhibit the absorption of zinc.

As a vegetarian for almost 30 years, zinc is a dietary supplement I use. Zinc Lozenges can also be used especially for those who tend to get a lot of colds. Research on sublingual administration of zinc to be very effective against colds. Read The Handbook for Curing the Common Cold.

Mild zinc deficiency symptoms include dry and rough skin, dull looking hair, brittle finger nails, white spots on nails, reduced taste and smell, loss of appetite, mood swings, reduced adaptation to darkness, frequent infections, delayed wound healing, dermatitis and acne.

Since I take Chelated Zinc tablets in a formula that helps with assimilation of it by adding herbal and mineral co-factors.

The upper limit for zinc is set at 40 mg per day for adults over 19. Doses up to 30 mg per day are generally well tolerated. Be sure to take zinc with a meal. If taken on an empty stomach it can and probably will make you throw up.

Reference: American Zinc Association

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

FDA Approval and Pharmaceutical Marketing

Four modules have been created that detail the extent and effect that pharmaceutical marketing may have on prescribing behaviors.

The content of the video modules includes information on the FDA and the drug approval process, promotions and marketing activities by pharmaceutical companies, and the ethical dimensions of prescribing.

Experts from the fields of nursing, medicine, bioethics, health care policy and journalism are interviewed in the documentary. Dramatic vignettes are also presented with a humorous interplay in order to create a format that is educational, thought provoking and entertaining.

Module One - Why and how are drugs approved?
Overview of drug research and development in the United States; the FDA drug approval process.

Module Two - There’s no such thing as a free lunch…or dinner
Overview of pharmaceutical marketing practices, scientific evidence on the effect of marketing methods on prescribing behavior (drug samples, free meals, interactions with drug industry representatives, industry sponsored CME and lectures at national conferences, free gifts, office supplies).

Module Three - Is this the right thing to do?
Overview, discussion and presentation of opposing views regarding the ethical dimensions of pharmaceutical marketing and direct-to-consumer advertising; conflict of interest debate; effect on costs to patients and health care system as a whole.

Module Four - How can I improve my practice?
Overview of strategies to improve prescribing, i.e. evidence-based prescribing vs. market-based prescribing; cost-effective prescribing; strategies to improve interaction with representatives; critical evaluation techniques of pharmaceutical company information (data and claims).

Monday, November 3, 2008

Local Food Trends

Eating locally raised food is a growing trend. But who has time to get to the farmer’s market, let alone plant a garden?

That is where Trevor Paque comes in. For a fee, Mr. Paque, who lives in San Francisco, will build an organic garden in your backyard, weed it weekly and even harvest the bounty, gently placing a box of vegetables on the back porch when he leaves.

Call them the lazy locavores — city dwellers who insist on eating food grown close to home but have no inclination to get their hands dirty. Mr. Paque is typical of a new breed of business owner serving their needs.

The highest form of luxury is now growing it yourself or paying other people to grow it for you,” said Corby Kummer, the food columnist and book author. “This has become fashion.” As a result of interest in local food and rising grocery bills, backyard gardens have been enjoying a renaissance across the country.

For a growing number of diners, a food’s provenance is more important than its brand name, said Michelle Barry, who studies American eating patterns for the Hartman Group, a research firm in Bellevue, Wash. As a result, grocery stores are looking to repackage products like milk and cheese to play up any local angle.

“It’s a very savvy crowd that understands how all the pieces of sustainable farming and nutrition fit together,” said Larry Wisch, one of five worker-owners at Three Stone Hearth. “But they don’t want the headaches of getting here.”

The author Barbara Kingsolver, whose book “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” was a best seller last year, did not have the lazy locavore in mind when she wrote about the implications of making her family spend a year eating local. But she celebrates the trend.

Finding Local Food.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Health Knowledge Is Power

Are patients swimming in a sea of health information? Or are they drowning in it?

The rise of the Internet, along with thousands of health-oriented Web sites, medical blogs and even doctor-based television and radio programs, means that today’s patients have more opportunities than ever to take charge of their medical care. Technological advances have vastly increased doctors’ diagnostic tools and treatments, and have exponentially expanded the amount of information on just about every known disease.

The daily bombardment of news reports and drug advertising offers little guidance on how to make sense of self-proclaimed medical breakthroughs and claims of worrisome risks. Patients have more than ever to gain by decoding the latest health news and researching their own medical care. Read the entire article.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Dangers of CT Scans

Everything in medicine is risk versus benefit.

A recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine by Brenner, et al, has alerted the public as well as physicians about the possible dangers of radiation exposure with increased use of the CT scan.

Much of the data we have concerning radiation exposure comes from that gathered on the survivors of the atomic bombs we dropped on Japan in 1945. It has been suggested that the median dose of radiation in these studies that has shown an increase in cancer risk is the equivalent of 2-3 CT scans. It is worth noting that the type of radiation emitted by a bomb is different than that used in scanning, but it is still ionizing radiation.

In a Swedish study by Hall,et al, looking at infants who had received radiation treatments for cutaneous hemangiomas, such as wine-stain birthmarks, showed some decrease in cognitive abilities in their teenage years and early adulthood. It is well known that children are more sensitive to ionizing radiation than adults. It has been suggested that after the age of 50 the increased risk of cancer is not statistically relevant if the patient has not received CT scans in the past. Read the entire article.