Search Term: " Cleaner "
These Essential Oils Beat Commercial Products Hands Down
May 08, 2019 01:35 PM
Mixtures of plant essential oils can be surprisingly powerful cleaning agents that will keep your dwelling pristine without harsh chemicals. Lemon oil excels at cutting grease. Tea tree oil is a powerful antimicrobial that can handle the toughest bathroom germs, and can be mixed with thyme oil to create a superb all-purpose cleaner and disinfectant. Lavender oil can be added into laundry to make it smell fresh and pleasant. Clove essential oil can be mixed with water and rubbing alcohol to make a sprayable air freshener.
"Essential oils are compounds that are extracted from plants. These oils engulf the plant oil and flavor, which is also called the “essence.” Each oil contains special aromatic compounds that give it a unique essence."
Read more: https://www.thealternativedaily.com/essential-oils-beat-commercial-products-hands-down/
8 Ways To Clean With Oregano Oil
June 02, 2018 09:16 AM
Do you know how many harmful chemicals are in items that we use on a daily basis? The shampoo you use to wash your hair, the detergent that washes your clothes, and the cleaner you use to scrub your counter all contain toxic ingredients. However, you can use other things in their place. Oregano oil can kill many bugs. You can use it to clean items, as hand sanitizer, and to freshen up your damp or smelly laundry.
"Today we know that the antibacterial and antifungal properties of oregano can be attributed to phenols in the natural oil of the plant, including thymol and carvacrol."
Read more: https://www.thealternativedaily.com/8-ways-to-clean-with-oregano-oil/
What is Okra Good For? 5 Wonderful Benefits of Okra
September 21, 2017 09:14 AM
Okra is a versatile plant that can provide both nutritional as well as health benefits. In terms of cooking, Okra can be prepared to your preference through roasting, boiling, frying or stewing. It can also be steamed to extract a gooey substance that can then be further utilized as a thickener in other recipes.
But Okra also has numerous health benefits as well. It is effective at filtering your blood, aiding in the treatment of kidney deisease. It acts as an antioxidant and is particularly useful in protecting you from liver diseases. It also helps regulate blood sugar levels leading to the belief that it is a viable alternative treatment for those affected by diabetes. It also has been shown to be an effective alternative for treating depression.
But perhaps the most exciting application is the possibility it presents in the treatment of breast cancer. This is currently being studied, but so far it seems that extracts gathered from Okra have shown promise in reducing the growth rate of cancer cells, and in eradicating some existing cancer cells. So this is an exciting development that bears further investigation.
Given the vast list of proven and potential benefits previously listed, Okra seems to be a vegetable that we should all be giving serious consideration to adding to our diets.
"Okra extracts were used in a study performed to treat human breast cancer cells due to its high lectin content. The treatment both reduced cancer cell growth by 63 percent and killed 72 percent of the cancer cells."
Read more: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PgEOZOi-2Uo
Look what happens to your mouth if you apply this homemade recipe. Surprising!!
September 19, 2017 12:14 PM
People can see some interesting things happen in their mouth when they apply one homemade recipe. It is very surprising. Dental health is a very important thing. If our teeth are not healthy, then chewing can be a tough thing for people. One thing people have in their teeth that causes an issue is tartar. This homemade method will get rid of tartar. With a good cleaning, you can eliminate the root problem. If we take care of our teeth, we do not need to go to the dentist a lot.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B02dGxLRIhc&rel=0
"One of the most common problems that people is the presence of tartar as it causes the teeth to look yellow"
5 Natural Remedies To Treat Rosacea
July 30, 2017 12:14 PM
Rosacea is a skin condition of inflamed blood vessels on your face, many people worldwide suffer from this skin condition. People think that this just means red skin, but many people also have photo reactive skin, painful skin and skin that burns. There are things that can help, like eating a cleaner variety of foods. Using aloe vera. Using tea tree oil, green tea and cucumber also work well with inflamed skin because they have anti inflammatory properties.
"Rosacea is quite unpredictable and can flare up out of the blue or remain dormant for long periods of time. It might worsen over the years, remain constant or improve slightly with time."
Read more: http://www.thealternativedaily.com/natural-remedies-for-rosacea/
Umeboshi Plums: Liver Cleanser & Cancer Fighter
July 24, 2017 04:14 PM
Umeboshi plums help out as a liver cleaner and a cancer fighter. These things are sour, salty and full of many different health benefits. They are also known as the sour plumb. It is made from dry and pickled ume fruit. That is a fruit that is very closely related to the apricot. They are round and wrinkled and have a very distinct sour taste to them. That is because they have a high content of citric acid.
"In terms of nutrition, umeboshi contains a good chunk of the potassium, manganese and fiber you need in a day"
Read more: https://draxe.com/umeboshi-plums/
5 Must-Know Benefits Of Tea Tree Oil (And How To Use It)
July 02, 2017 04:14 PM
Tea Tree oil (also known as melaluka) is an amazing oil and once you learn how to use it you will be amazed by the benefits. There are thousands of studies performed to evaluate this essential oil. it can be used to treat acne, and eczema. mixed with coconut oil, it can be a great treatment for your hair. it is an antifungal, and additionally can be used to brush your teeth. It is very concentrated so use caution.
"Tea tree oil is a strong anti-inflammatory agent, meaning it can help to soothe and treat many ailments of the skin."
Read more: http://www.thealternativedaily.com/health-benefits-of-tea-tree-oil/
Hydrogen Peroxide For Teeth Whitening, Hair And More
June 29, 2017 07:14 PM
Hydrogen Peroxide has a multitude of personal uses. The most common use of Peroxide is to clean and disinfect cuts and scrapes.Mixing Peroxide and baking soda makes for an excellent teeth whitener and cleaner and helps remove tooth stains.Topical Peroxide also works to loosen ear wax, by simply pouring a cap full into the ear, and allowing it to bubble, then rinsing the ear. Higher concentrate Peroxide,usually found at beauty supply stores, has long been used to lighten hair color.
Read more: Hydrogen Peroxide For Teeth Whitening, Hair And More
5 Reasons you should NEVER use canola oil, even if its ORGANIC
June 27, 2017 09:14 AM
Canola oil is a popular cooking oil that is attractive to customers and the restaurant industry. Canola oil is believed to have benefits such as a smaller waistline and a cleaner environment. It is now believed that Canola oil may not be as healthy as once thought. Canola oil must undergo many chemical processes in its original form before it can be converted into Canola oil. Also, since the Canola plant is one of the first plants that was genetically modified, it may be subject to exposure by a large amount of pesticides.
"Even canola oils deemed organic still undergo various production processes, and may not have a healthier fatty acid profile compared with commercial varieties."
Read more: http://www.naturalnews.com/2017-06-24-6-reasons-you-should-never-use-canola-oil-even-if-its-organic.html
8 Reasons To Add Lime Juice To Your Water
June 16, 2017 07:14 PM
There are 8 reasons why you should add lime juice to your water. Household cleaners have lime in them because it helps kill all of the bad things. It also helps to lower inflammation in your own body. Keeping inflammation under control is vital to your overall health and well being. Limes may help protect against and even destroy cancer. Limes can also help to power up your metabolism. These are all very important things.
Read more: 8 Reasons To Add Lime Juice To Your Water
THIS COLON CLEANSING REMEDY HAS POWERFUL EFFICACY, You Will Need Just 2 Ingredients!
April 20, 2017 04:44 AM
No one really thinks about how vital the colon is to your body. Your colon must be clean and clear of anything that may cause can affection. The colon does so much for the body that not a lot of people realize because they don't see it. The colon has a lot to do with your metabolism, the Cleaner it stays the faster your metabolism is. A colon can simply be cleaned by the stuff you put into your body. This video provides two ingredients that will help keep your colon clean on a regular basis.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fCp5g0TaV6o&rel=0
"The intestines process 100 tons of food and 40000 liters of fluids during a period of 70 years, meaning that about 10 pounds of fecal deposits and toxic waste pile up in the stomach every year, and thus contaminate the blood and lead to great damage to the body."
7 Easy alternatives to toxic household cleaning products
March 31, 2017 10:44 AM
Household cleaning products keep the house looking immaculate, but sometimes that is at the expense of our health and our environment. If you are like millions of Americans and concerned about the effects of household cleaners, stop using them today and start choosing worthwhile alternatives. These alternatives minimize risks to your health and the environment, but still provide the same awesome cleaning power needed to love the home that you are in. Isn't it time to clean better?
Read more: 7 Easy alternatives to toxic household cleaning products
VERY USEFUL HOMEMADE STAIN REMOVAL! THE RESULTS WILL SURPRISE YOU!!
March 20, 2017 04:44 AM
Everyone who has tried to remove a stain also knows how hard they are to remove. There are so many different products on the market which claim to remove stains, some work better than others. Most, if not all, commercial stain removers offered on the store shelves contain toxic chemicals which could harm you, your family, or your pets. Besides the danger of a small child or pet drinking a liquid Cleaner, there are dangers due to inhalation or skin exposure during normal use. The solution to this problem is to use a simple, natural, non toxic alternative. Simply mix 3.3 ounces white vinegar, 3.3 ounces liquid salt, 3 and 1/3 ounces mineral water and put the mixture into a clean spray bottle. Spray the solution on the stain, leave to soak for 15 minutes and then scrub the stain with a brush. Older stains may need a longer soak or you may repeat the process until the stain is removed.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuR7pujfz0Q&rel=0
"Stains are created frequently in our everyday life, as we stain or clothes, furniture, and even car seats."
CoQ10 — A Nutritional Powerhouse for Mitochondrial Health
December 27, 2016 10:59 AM
coenzyme Q10, which is referred to as CoQ10 is gaining popularity in the supplement marketplace. The number of Americans who are using this supplement has risen to twenty-four million people. This is good news as research shows its benefits. New research shows it keeps the mitochondria healthy, allowing for oxygen to be converted to energy.
"Between 2000 and 2016, the number of Americans using CoQ10 increased from an estimated 2 million to 24 million, and the number of brands featuring CoQ10 has increased from 18 brands to 125."
Schools are filled with bacteria, causing crippling lung function in children
December 19, 2016 07:59 AM
Sure, when you send your kids to school you worry about a lot of things: Fitting in, bullying, learning but never did you think that you would have to worry about bacteria from mice and other rodents. Researchers have shown that bacteria in school has caused an increase in asthma in school age kids. This is increasing at such an alarming rate that it finally caught the attention of health officials even though the effects have been happening for years.
"Some 284 children from 37 inner-city public schools located throughout the Northeastern United States were evaluated as part of the research."
People can use DE
Diatomaceous Earth (DE) is safe to consume internally and sprinkle around externally. DE can be used as a natural deodorizer for garbage cans, vacuum Cleaner bags and refrigerators.
You can polish silver and jewelry by mixing DE in water to form a paste. Apply then remove with a dry cloth.
For a facial mask mix DE with water or oil to make a paste. Apply in a circular motion. Leave on for five minutes, then wash off the warm water.
Polish your Teeth
Sprinkle a small amount of DE on toothpaste for vigorous tooth polishing.
Mix DE with your favorite oil for nail soak to strengthen your nails.
Internal use amounts
The recommended dosage is 2% of dry weight. One teaspoon of DE weighs 1/10 of an ounce. Four cups of food weighs, on average, one pound. If you consume four cups of food, you will use one tablespoon of DE. If you want to mix with water, use one teaspoon for every cup of water. Slowly work your way up in dosage so that you know your limits.
Drink plenty of water when consuming 2 or more teaspoons daily.
Have fun and enjoy a better life with DE.
Diatomaceous Eart (DE) is Safe For All Kinds Of Pets
Diatomaceous earth is composed of silicon dioxide (Silica). The U.S. government has allowed Diatomaceous earth for agriculture uses since the 1960's. With decades of use, Diatomaceous earth is very safe.
Diatomaceous Earth (DE) Mixes well with kitten litter. Mix a handful of DE with litter. DE deodorizes and absorbs moisture. DE is odorless so it will not deter cats from using the box.
Lightly dust pets' bedding. DE will absorb oils, dirt, and smells. Keeps kennel area dry and odor free.
Backyard Chickens love DE. It keeps their coops Cleaner, drier and odor free.
Anywhere you want to deodorize sprinkle Some DE there.
STEVIA – BETTER THAN SUGAR
Stevia is a natural sweetener that originates in South America – Paraguay and Brazil, mostly – with no calories and is remarkably much sweeter than sugar. The stevia plant Stevia Rebaudiana derives its sweetness from steviol glycocides. The extract is then processed for sale in the form of Truvia and PureVia around North America. It is not yet approved as an additive due to possible side effects of male infertility and genetic mutations.
Benefits of Stevia over Sugar
The yeast we hear about being in our bodies is called Candida albicans and it can ferment sugar in the body, causing the candidiasis infection with treatment involving cutting sugar out of your diet. Stevia does not react with the yeast and can also keep your food sweet.
Stevia is a safer and healthier option to sugar. It is natural and sweeter than sugar making it a great option to combat obesity and sugar level problems the world is constantly facing.
D Limonene Solvent - What Is It and How Does It Work
April 11, 2014 10:01 AM
What is a D Limonene
D Limonene is the essential part of oil concentrated from citrus skin. It has two essential utilization: as nourishment evaluation D Limonene to add citrus flavor to non-citrus sustenances, and as specialized evaluation D Limonene to include citrus fragrance or citrus cleaning force to a mixture of Cleaners. The production of the recent happens when pressed skin is set in a steam extractor, which gathers the ensuing steam and makes an oil layer that buoys on water.
As a consequence of the regular living development, D Limonene use in business items has expanded drastically, especially cleaning results, where it might be utilized as an unadulterated dissolvable or a concentrated dissolvable that could be weakened. D Limonene is important as a supplanting for customary solvents, a number of which transmit Hazardous Air Pollutants (Haps) or exhaust from Volatile Organic Compounds (Vocs). Solvents that are regularly traded with D Limonene dissolvable incorporate methyl ethyl ketone, ch3)2co, toluene, glycol ethers, and various fluorinated and chlorinated solvents. In institutional settings, D Limonene dissolvable is commonly blended with a surfactant, preparing an answer holding 5-15 percent D Limonene.
From provincial Cleaners found at retail chains to modern Cleaners that oblige unique requesting, there is no deficiency of results holding D Limonene. Anyhow in the event that you require a modern adaptation of the dissolvable, discovering one that offers the same or better cleaning power as its dangerous partners might be troublesome. One case of a D Limonene dissolvable that helps is VORTEX citrus Cleaner and overwhelming obligation degreaser, a natural semi-fluid dissolvable that serves as a parts Cleaner and general mechanical Cleaner. With a 100 percent natural plan, VORTEX is biodegradable however holds the ability to uproot oil, tar, oil, black-top, and natural saps in one stage. VORTEX's extra profits incorporate no risky materials or recorded solvents, no hurtful exhaust, and no petroleum distillates.
Can Tea Tree Oil Work As An Antiseptic?
January 23, 2014 03:59 PM
What is Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is a popular essential oil. This essential oil is one of the strongest natural antiseptic and is commonly known as the universal antiseptic. This characteristic makes it one of the most valuable items in homemade cleaning ingredients.
Time has come for you to stop using air-polluting, chemical laden and hazardous chemical cleaning products. It is very unprofessional for manufactures to use the so call trade secrets, which means they can incorporate chemicals to the products that we use on daily basis.
Various companies provide products that are eco-friendly, nontoxic cleaning products. However it is cheaper if you decide to make your own product. You may realize that when you start using natural, safe cleaning products, you may not want to back to using chemicals. The impact and change is so impressive to your body physiologically, and so pleasing emotionally that you can not use chemicals again.
Uses of Tree Tree Oil
Clinical research has showed the value of tea tree oil. An Australian doctor discovered that tea tree leaves contain an essential oil, which have antiseptic and bacterial properties highly stronger than common hand soap. It turns out to be one of the most important compared to other essential oils. The germicidal, antiseptic, antibacterial immune boosting qualities make it to be used in a wide range of health conditions. Additionally, the antiseptic qualities of the oil make it to be a natural disinfectant and Cleaner within the house.
The tree oil has various uses for housekeeping. You can check it yourself how it really works to kill mold and mildew with its easy test. Put about two spoons of Australian tea tree oil in a spray bottle with two cups of clean water. Spray this mixture on a moldy surface and let the smell diffuse away for a few days. In addition, the smell of must and mold will also die away, since the source of the moisture has been detached.
You can make your own cleaning products with antibacterial properties that are available in nature. You will fell much brighter and stronger after a few hours with essential oils than you will after inhaling toxic chemicals.
A Healthy Colon Requires Lots Of Fiber
December 16, 2010 02:34 PM
Psyllium Husk Fiber
Nowadays, because of the kind of lifestyle that people have, there is an evident rise of different medical condition which concerns the colon. What comprises our diet will surely affect our health. Hence, those who engage in a diet that contains very low amount of fiber and nutrients will eventually grasp health problems most especially in the digestive system. However, because of the new discoveries in this present world we live in, there is less need for us to fret because there are already a variety of remedy that promises you relief from such feared medical conditions.
Psyllium is one of the many agents being incorporated in many edible products nowadays. It can be found in almost all breakfast cereals mainly because of its unfathomable health benefits that help the individual to have a more effective digestive process. Psyllium came from a native plant in Iran known as Plantago psyllium. Its seeds contains liberal amounts of glycosides and mucilages that is now being used in many food industries to give the products they are selling a texture that is more appealing to the majority of consumers.
Not only for its textural benefits, but most especially for the health faculties it contributes to the health of every consumer. Psyllium husk is an abundant source of water soluble fiber, similar to the kind of fiber present in oats and barley but in more abundant amounts. It has been found out that in every 100 grams of psyllium could give the consumer 71 grams off essential soluble fiber that helps you to attain better metabolism and colon function.
It is definitely good and beneficial for our colon because it does not break down as it enter and passes through the gastrointestinal tract, it increases fecal mass and loosen stool hence (when adequate water is consumed along with it), you can achieve a Cleaner colon free from constipation and other digestive problems as well. Psyllium’s health benefits are not only hearsays but are being acknowledge by Food and Drug Administration of the United States of America. FDA also affirmed that psyllium fiber combined with a low-fat diet can help in maintaining blood cholesterol levels within normal values for it contains liberal amount of soluble fiber that prevents the absorption of blood cholesterol and bile acids from the intestinal tract.
Needless to say, psyllium is indeed a gift to the human race. But it alone could not solve all the health problems that we have, hence it is advisable to engage in healthy lifestyle, coupled with proper diet, enough sleep and adequate exercise. Our health is very fragile that is why with all our might we should protect it. We only have one body and one lifetime to live. For us to savor it fully, we should engage in a lifestyle that could not bring any detrimental effect into our health. Let us learn how to identify the components of the food that we eat and make sure that psyllium is one of those.
Keeping your colon clean with plenty of fiber can boost your health and wellness and help you live a long time.
What is stopping you from adding psyllium husk fiber to your diet?
July 29, 2009 04:35 PM
Salvia is the Latin name for sage, meaning healthy. The sage plant was highly revered for its healing benefits in the Mediterranean. It also originated in the Mediterranean. The plant is a perennial herbaceous shrub that can be found growing up to heights of fifty meters. It prefers dry chalky soils in sunny areas, but it will thrive in a rich soil with good drainage. Although it can now be found growing in many areas throughout the world, it should not be confused with the brush sage that grows in the desert areas.
Often, dried sage leaves are used as culinary spices. Sage is, and has been, a staple in many households. Traditionally, it is used to prolong life. It is also used in lotions to help heal sores and other sin ailments. Fresh sage leaves are chewed in order to remedy infections of the mouth and throat. Gargling with sage can also be an effective way to help treat a sore throat. Additionally, sage helps with excessive mucus discharge, nasal drip, sores, and excessive saliva secretions. The herb has antipyretic qualities that have been known to help with fevers, night sweats, and related problems.
This herb is also beneficial for mental exhaustion and for increasing the ability to concentrate. Sage improves memory and has been used on some forms of mental illness. Also, it has been used to treat digestive disorders such as ulcers, nausea, and diarrhea. It is used topically as an antiseptic for sores, and sore gums. The herb is even used as a teeth Cleaner or hair tonic.
Sage has been found in clinical studies to contain antioxidant properties. It is thought that the labiatic acid found within is the active constituent. Evidence has shown that there is some antimicrobial activity in this herb as well. Recent research using laboratory animals has found antispasmodic activity in sage extracts. This activity may account for its use as a digestive aid. It should be noted that those people with seizure disorders should only use sage under the supervision of a health-care provider.
The leaves of the sage plant are used to provide alterative, antigalactagogue, antihydrotic, antioxidant, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aromatic, astringent, carminative, diaphoretic, digestive, febrifuge, parasiticide, stimulant, and vulnerary properties. The primary nutrients found in this herb are calcium, phosphorus, potassium, silicon, sodium, sulfur, and vitamins A, B-complex, and C. Primarily, sage is extremely beneficial in dealing with coughs, diabetes, fevers, gastic disorders, sore gums, indigestion, infection, absent lactation, memory impairments, mental illnesses, mouth sores, nausea, nervous conditions, night sweats, sores, sore throat, and worms.
Additionally, this herb is very helpful in treating snake bits, blood infections, colds, cystitis, diarrhea, dysentery, flu, hair loss, headaches, kidney stones, laryngitis, lung congestion, mucus discharge, nasal drip, palsy, parasites, phlegm, sinus congestion, skin disorders, tonsillitis, ulcers, and yeast infections. In order to obtain the best results when supplementing with this, or any herb, it is important to consult your health care provider before beginning any regimen. For more information on the many beneficial effects provided by sage, please feel free to consult a representative from your local health food store with questions.
DIM For Estrogen Balance
July 10, 2008 03:26 PM
Diindolylmethane from broccoli can help with estrogen balance: There is plenty of evidence to suggest that, but before discussing the whys and wherefores, let's first have a look at the substance, where it comes from and why it should have any effect on estrogen or its balance.
Diindolylmethane is an indole contained in brassicas such as broccoli, cabbage, kale, brussel sprouts and cauliflower. It is a dimer of indole-3-carbinol, which is itself formed by the autolytic degradation of glucosinolate glucobrassicin which is found in brassicas. Both this and the dimeric diindolylmethane are currently being tested for their antioxidant, anticancer and antiatherogenic properties, although this type of research has been mainly made on animals. When the cell walls of brassicas are ruptured, the enzyme myrosinase is released, that breaks down the glucobrassicin.
Because diindolylmethane is oil soluble it is more bioavailable to the body in the presence of vitamin E and other lipophilic substances, and these are normally included in oral supplements. However, back to estrogen and its effects upon human estrogen balance. Estrogen is the name for a group of steroids that function substantially as the female sex hormone. They have many effects on the body, including regulation of the menstrual cycle, breast development and promote the formation of secondary female characteristics such as reduced height and muscle mass.
Estrogen is also present in the male, where it regulates several factors pertaining to the reproductive system. It does not, however, take part in the process that determines sexual desire. If all of these properties are considered it would seem logical to believe that estrogen levels could be used to control weight increase, although claims that it can be use to enhance sexual performance seem ill founded: based more on hope than on science!
What science appears to have found, however, is that estrogen dominance, due to an imbalance between estrogen and progesterone levels in the body, can give rise to increased weight, and even obesity, in women. It can also lead to uterine, ovarian and breast cancers, and cervical dysplasia which, while not cancer, can give rise to cervical cancer if not treated. Estrogen imbalance, therefore, is not good news and something to be avoided if it possibly can. So what can be done to avoid it?
The answer is to find a hormonal balance, and this is where diindolylmethane (DIM) comes in. The substance has been found to have a positive effect on the balance between estrogen and progesterone, although eating broccoli will not be sufficient to do the job properly. Insufficient DIM is released by breaking the cell walls of broccoli through chewing to have much effect on the balance, about a kilo of broccoli a day being needed to have any noticeable effect. It is the diindolylmethane supplements that are able to have the desired effect in restoring the hormone balance and eliminating the undesirable effects of estrogen imbalance.
But why should estrogen imbalance occur? What are the factors that cause this dangerous condition, and if it is so common how did our ancestors manage without today's science? The answer to the second question lies in that to the first, but before we discuss that don't go thinking that your ancestors managed through thick and thin. Perhaps yours did, but your life expectancy is significantly greater than that of your parents when they were born. In fact, you don't have to go too far up your family tree to when you would be doing well if you hit forty! So the argument about your ancestors doesn't wash.
In fact, an estrogen imbalance can be caused by several factors: a slow estrogen metabolism that leads to an excess of estrogen because it is not broken down quickly enough is common, but far more common is the effect of pollutants such as pesticides, car exhaust fumes, emulsifiers, household Cleaners and even some soaps. They contain chemicals known as xenoestrogens that our body believes to be real estrogens. They can stick to estrogen receptors on healthy cells, and can also prevent true estrogen from binding to the cell it should bind to. This results in an increase in free estrogen that cannot bind to the estrogen receptors that it should. Your ancestors did not have these problems with such 'estrogen mimics' and so managed just fine.
There is also the fact that estrogen can be broken down in the liver by means of two different routes: one leads to a form of estrogen that metabolizes to provide many benefits, such as strong bones and a reduction in heart disease, while the other has the opposite effect of causing cancers, depression, osteoporosis and problems with your immune system. That is by no means the full list: you don't want to see that, believe me!
You might think that if estrogen is dominant over progesterone, then taking progesterone would resolve the problem. It would seem to be a good cure. In fact, it is not a good idea since progesterone can be metabolized into yet more estrogen, making the problem even worse. The real answer is to take a supplement containing the substance that solves the problem by changing the estrogen metabolism pathways in the liver: diindolylmethane. More of the so-called "good" estrogen metabolites are formed, and less of the bad. The actual estrogen levels are not changed, but the way in which the excess estrogen causes harm is changed. That way, it doesn't matter what the imbalance is, the estrogen cannot do ham to your body.
DIM possesses many potential positive benefits when used as a supplement. It can reduce your chances of getting breast, cervical and ovarian cancers, and also acts as a strong antioxidant, and helps to strengthen your immune system. It might help you to lose weight, but more studies are needed before this can be claimed conclusively. However, there is evidence at the moment that it has a weight reducing effect.
Its effect on sexual health is largely unfounded, but the effect of a placebo in this area can be astounding: that indicates how much psychology has to do with sexual performance. Nevertheless, the known and projected benefits of diindolylmethane are so significant that taking a supplement would seem a reasonable thing to do, and although your mom was right about you eating your broccoli, brassicas alone are not a rich enough source for a significant effect.
Natural Bar Soaps for the Kitchen and Bathroom
January 23, 2008 11:59 AM
Good natural bar soaps that contain only substances that are good for your skin are available, although most people pay little attention to them. Many people might be unaware of the fact but the skin is the largest organ of the body. As such, the skin needs taken care of just as much as any other major organ, yet few people pay much attention to what they bring into contact with it. Although a lot of money is spent on body products, do you really know what your skin needs for optimum health and what substances can do it harm?
Your skin carries out many functions other than keeping the bits inside that should be kept inside. It is a natural thermostat, containing the sweat glands that dampens it and allows evaporation to cool you down. It contains hairs and subcutaneous fat, both of which help you to remain warm when the external temperature is low. Your skin is designed to remain supple, and so allow free movement of the various parts of your body.
It is an ideal waterproof covering for your body that also protects you from infection. Although infection can set in if the skin is ruptured through cuts or grazes, the skin itself rarely suffers from surface infections when related to the number of infectious agents it is constantly in contact with.
The health of your skin is very important, especially in view of the fact that it regularly comes into contact with some very hazardous substances. What may not have occurred to you is that one of the many functions of your skin is to eliminate some of the body’s waste products. It does this when you sweat and the toxins that are emitted can harm it. Although not often infected, it does suffer from complaints such as psoriasis, eczema and acne that are not primarily caused by bacterial agents or viruses, and hence not true infections.
These conditions, however, are caused largely through the emission of toxic agents through the sweat glands. Acne for instance is caused by excessive emission of sebum that combines with dead skin cells to form acne which can also become infected with bacteria. Psoriasis is the excessive formation of skin cells at too rapid a rate, the true causes of which are as yet unknown. Skin cells can become cancerous due to excessive exposure to sunlight or ultra violet radiation, and skin cancer is the most common type of cancer that your doctor is liable to come across.
If you suffer from any specific skin condition, such as acne, or even dry skin that can be caused through excessive exposure to degreasing agents or dry winds, then your skin will need special care. The soap you use is very important in the way you care for your skin, and many people will use soaps that contain many ingredients that they cannot pronounce let alone understand.
Your skin needs cleansed regularly since it comes into contact with many dangerous and toxic substances. Apart from the everyday pollution of traffic fumes and factory emissions, there are also the substances that contaminate your skin at work and at home. At home specially, domestic Cleaners can be very harsh on your skin, consisting of substances that are intended to clean away greases and oils, the very types of substance that protect your skin from the elements. When you clean your oven or your sink without gloves, you also clean off the protective oily layer on your skin and leave it open to bacterial attack.
Your skin can also become sensitized to many substances, so that whenever it comes into contact with them it promotes an allergic reaction that can cause irritations so severe that your life can become very miserable. Many people are allergic to various types of soap or detergent because they have become sensitized to them, and are unable to use that type of cleanser after sensitization.
Many soaps contain active ingredients that are intended to carry out specific functions. Thus, some contain antibacterial agents to inhibit the growth of specific types of bacteria on your skin, while others contain detergents to improve their cleaning power. However, some detergents can be very harsh on your skin, and try to avoid bar soaps containing PEG-6 methyl ether or butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT). These can be harmful to your skin. There are others, and if your skin is sensitive try to avoid soaps containing animal products or petroleum derivatives.
Take tetrasodium EDTA, which is present in common bar soaps. It enhances the penetration of substances through your skin, which means that it can also enhance the penetration of the lees welcome ingredients in the soap as well as the moisturizers. Substances as sodium etidronate that is a synthetic preservative that might cause irritation to your skin and mucus membranes. There are several other synthetic detergents that are ingredients in bar soaps, and many kitchen soaps contain the same ingredients as personal or bathroom soaps, the difference between them being only in their moisturizer and perfume content.
Other ingredients than can cause potential problems are limonene, linalool and camphor, all of which can give rise to unwelcome conditions such as irritation or respiratory problems. The first two of these are common in bar soaps, as are benzaldehyde and benzyl alcohol which are irritants. Alpha-pinene, found in some bar soaps, is a sensitizer than can damage your immune system. Unless you know what a specific ingredient is, don’t use the soap. Instead you should use pure natural bar soaps containing antioxidants that are good for your skin.
A pure soap should contain the fat or oil that it is made from, good examples being coconut or palm oils, water, a water softener to enable the soap to cleanse the skin properly, an example being one of the penetrates, a moisturizer such as glycerine or lanolin and possibly a perfume derived from natural sources. Salt is also frequently used, and is a good bactericide.
Wherever possibly, you should choose a natural soap containing antioxidants. Citrus soaps, for example, contain vitamin C although many soaps contain antioxidants such as beta carotenes, vitamin A and vitamin E. Since soap consists of both oils and water, you can have both oil and water soluble antioxidants in your soap. The antioxidants help to protect your skin from the ravages of pollution and the effects of the sun’s rays, both of which generate free radicals that can accelerate the aging and wrinkling of your skin.
A good antioxidant, moisturizer and wetting agent in your bar soap will help to protect your skin from the effects of atmospheric pollutants, the drying effect of the sun and wind and also effectively cleanse the skin surface and pores of everyday dirt. If this is associated with an absence of synthetic chemicals that can cause irritation then you will be giving your skin the best protection that you can. This is true of soaps intended either for the kitchen or the bathroom.
June 10, 2005 05:38 PM
Aromessentials by Joanne Gallo , February 3, 2002
Aromessentials By Joanne Gallo
But aromatherapy is more than just a '90s-style novelty. The practice of using aromatic essential oils for psychological and physical well-being dates back more than 4,000 years to medicinal practices in Egypt and India.
The term "aromatherapy" was coined in 1937 by French cosmetic chemist R.M. Gattefosse, who discovered the benefits of essential oil after burning his hand in a laboratory accident. Gattefosse immersed his hand into the nearest available cool liquid: a vat of lavender oil. The near miraculous soothing of his pain and rapid healing spurred him to dedicate his life to the study of aromatic plants and their therapeutic effects.
How it Works
For those who turn their noses up at this most seemingly-subtle of senses, keep in mind that the perception of smell is 10,000 times more sensitive than the sense of taste. "The sense of smell is the sense of the imagination," noted French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau; this emotional connection lies at the heart of aromatherapy.
Aromas are transmitted rapidly from olfactory cells in the nose to the limbic system in the brain which perceives and responds to emotion, pleasure and memory. Scents trigger the limbic system to release neurochemicals which influence mood. Well-known neurochemicals like endorphins and serotonin help create a sense of well-being.
When you inhale essential oils, some of the molecules travel to the lungs, where they proceed to enter the bloodstream and circulate throughout the body.
Oils applied to the skin are absorbed into the bloodstream as well. Because they are oil/fat soluble, essential oils are highly absorbed by the body, where they circulate for anywhere from 20 minutes to 24 hours and are eventually eliminated through sweat and other bodily secretions.
Essential oils are extremely potent and volatile: approximately 75 to 100 times more concentrated than dried herbs.
Most essential oils are steam distilled from herbs, flowers and plants. Others are cold expressed from the rind of the fruit, which produces the purest essential oils because no heat or chemical treatment is involved.
The components of various oils are beneficial for a wide variety of beauty and hygiene conditions. Some of the more indispensable essential oils include:
Chamomile (anthemis nobilis): soothing properties for sensitive and inflamed skin; calming, balancing and relaxing.
Clary Sage (salvia sclarea): warming, female balancing herb used for PMS; calms anxiety, tension and stress; also used as a muscle relaxant for aches and pains.
Eucalyptus (eucalyptus globulus): antibacterial; fresh, herbal menthol aroma; widely used as an inhalant for colds, coughs and congestion; excellent for massaging tired or sore muscles.
Geranium (pelargonium graveolens): one of the best all-around tonic oils for mind and body; soothes nervous tension and mood swings; balances female hormones and PMS; gently astringent and antiseptic, it improves general tone and texture of skin.
Jasmine (jasminum grandiflorum): a warm, rich, sensual floral scent used historically as an aphrodisiac; moisturizing for dry/mature skin.
Lemon (citrus limonum): refreshing and invigorating; eases tension and depression; useful for oily skin and treatment of acne.
Peppermint (mentha piperita): cool, menthol, invigorating stimulant; cleans and purifies the skin.
Rosemary (rosmarinus officinalis): stimulating and uplifting; purifying and cleansing for all skin types; warm and penetrating for massage to ease muscular aches and pains.
Tea Tree (melaleuca alternifolia): an antiseptic from the leaves of the Australian tea tree; antifungal, antibacterial and antiviral; excellent for skin irritations like cold sores, insect bites and acne.
Ylang Ylang (cananga odorata): enticing and sensual; helps alleviate anger, stress, insomnia and hypertension; helps balance the skin's sebaceous secretions.
Essential oils can be utilized in a variety of ways: in electric or candle-based diffusers, to spread the aroma through a room; in sachets and air fresheners; added to shampoos and lotions; or diluted and applied to pulse points like the temples, on neck or on wrists. Undiluted essential oils should never be applied to the skin. First mix them with carrier oils: pure vegetable oils such as sweet almond oil, grapeseed oil and apricot kernel oil. Use a general guideline of six to 18 drops of essential oil per one ounce of vegetable oil. Blended, diluted oils are also available which can be used directly on your skin.
Pond's Aromatherapy Capsules come in four scents: Happy, which is fruity and floral; Romantic,with musk and vanilla; Relaxing, a floral and woodsy aroma; and Energizing, with fresh citrus and bright floral scents.
Sarah Michaels offers four essential oil blends: Sensual Jasmine, Soothing Lavender, Refreshing Citrus and Invigorating Peppermint.
The San Francisco Soap Company's Simply Be Well Line features an essential oil light ring set, a diffuser that uses the heat of a light bulb to spread an aroma through your room.
One of the most popular and luxurious ways to enjoy aromatherapy is in a steaming hot bath. Numerous bath products formulated with plant essences can turn your tub time into a rejuvenating experience. Body & Earth features Body Wash, Foam Bath and Soap in five essences: Vanilla Serenity, Lavender Whisper, Playful Peach, Raspberry Rapture and Pear Essence.
The Healing Garden offers a full line of aromatherapy products; try their Tangerinetherapy Wake Up Call Body Cleanser, Gingerlily Therapy Upbeat Bath & Shower Gel; or Minttherapy Fresh Start Bath & Shower Gel.
Simply Be Well products take traditional aromatherapy one step further by combining essential oils with herbal extracts and natural nutrients.
The line includes Shower Gel and Bath Salts in four fragrances: Explore contains ginkgo, eucalyptus, lemon and vitamin B6; Share features dong quai, passionflower, ylang ylang and zinc; Unwind includes kava kava, geranium, lavender and vitamin E; and Celebrate contains ginseng, wild mint, hemp and vitamin C.
Yardley London Bar Soaps, formulated with botanicals and moisturizers, are available in five fragrances: soothing English Lavender, exfoliating Oatmeal and Almond, Aloe Vera for natural healing, skin-softening Chamomile Essence, and astringent Evening Primrose.
"Aromatherapy and the cosmetic use of essential oils have made a tremendous contribution to skin care," asserts Joni Loughran, author of Natural Skin Care: Alternative & Traditional Techniques (Frog, Ltd.). "Every type of skin (such as oily, dry, and normal) can benefit." Some of the natural products that can help balance your skin include these:
Kiss My Face Foaming Facial Cleanser for Normal/Oily skin features citrus oils which act as antiseptics, marigold for healing, licorice root for toning, lavender to normalize oil production, plus the antioxidant green tea.
Kiss My Face's Gentle Face Cleaner for Normal/Dry skin includes essential oils plus organic, detoxifying herbs goldenseal and red clover, echinacea and rose hips with natural vitamin C.
Naturistics Almond Facial Moisture Cream contains almond, allantoin and calendula to smooth dry skin; Wild Chamomile Facial Lotion with rose hips and honeysuckle soothes and conditions rough skin.
Simply Be Well products, which use essential oils combined with herbal extracts like ginkgo and dong quai, are available in Body Lotion and Body Mist.
Wicks and Sticks
Perhaps the easiest way to get your aromatherapy fix is to light a candle and just sit back, relax and breathe.
The Healing Garden offers a wide variety of aromatic candles to suit your every mood; try their Green Teatherapy Meditation Candle; Jasminetherapy Embrace the Light Love Candle; or Lavendertherapy Peace & Tranquility Candle.
June 10, 2005 05:32 PM
Allergy Alleviation by Cal Orey , February 2, 2002
Allergy Alleviation By Cal Orey
Welcome to the stuffed up world of seasonal allergic rhinitis: the wheezing, sneezing "inhalant allergies" that torment 35 million Americans. Adding insult to sinus pain, other allergens attack year-round. Air pollution, dust mites (microscopic gremlins that infest bedding, upholstery and rugs) and animal dander trigger allergies-or other respiratory ailments-in any season. Urban air is full of rubber tire particles, a true blowout for those with latex sensitivity. Altogether, roughly 50 million Americans-about one in five-suffer from some form of allergy, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI). Tired of cross-pollinating with plants or being bowled over by dust balls? Vitamins, herbs and other nutrients can help you nip allergy discomfort in the bud.
The Allergy Response
Your immune system triggers an allergic response when it overreacts to otherwise harmless substances or antigens (we're talking dust, pollen and mold).The alarmed immune system then launches a defensive chemical reaction, releasing potent chemicals (antibodies) supposed to destroy the "invaders." The antibodies, called IgE, carry the invading substances to special cells, which zap them with more biochemicals. Among these protective cells are mast cells: they release histamine, the substance that causes swelling and inflammation to the linings of the nose, sinuses and eyelids, resulting in sneezing, upper respiratory congestion and itchy, watery eyes.
Just Blame The Folks
Most allergies are determined by your genes. If your Mom or Dad sneeze and scratch, there's a good chance you will, too. "That is not to say that we directly inherit an allergy to any specific substance. Rather, it seems as if we might inherit some kind of immune system defect or weakness that leaves us more vulnerable to allergies," explain co-authors Glenn S. Rothfeld, MD, and Suzanne LeVert in their book Natural Medicine for Allergies: The Best Alternative Methods for Quick Relief (Rodale). For some people, allergies lurk in food, throwing the immune system into overdrive. "Many natural medicine practitioners believe that a diet high in animal fats will contribute to the development of allergy and asthma, as does a diet high in food additives, such as preservatives and dyes," says Gary McLain, PhD, in his book The Natural Way of Healing: Asthma and Allergies (Dell). Worse, allergies can up the risk of asthma, which afflicts 15 million Americans. Most people afflicted with asthma also suffer allergies: the two are linked, according to the AAAAI. Allergy triggers of asthma include pollen, mold spores and house dust mites. Remember Helen Hunt's asthmatic son in the movie As Good As It Gets? His character endured allergies to dust, and living in New York (and watching his mom date Jack Nicholson) didn't help his immune system. Coughs, ear infections, fevers and visits to hospital emergency rooms curtailed his social life (and limited his close-ups as well). That kind of routine happens in real life, too. (Well, maybe close encounters with Jack N. are not included for most.) But when we breathe substances such as molds, they can induce swelling and inflammation of the bronchial airways which narrow and restrict air flow. This, in turn, causes wheezing and shortness of breath and can trigger an asthma "attack," according to Andrew Engler, MD, who specializes in allergy and asthma in San Mateo, California.
The Nose Knows: Chemical Sensitivities
Imagine a picture-perfect, crisp, clear Saturday morning. You make a final stop on your weekly errand run to the dry Cleaner, where you drop off your laundry and spend a moment chatting up the owner. Back in your car, your eyes tear and you feel a bit woozy. Kenneth Bock, MD, and Nellie Sabin, writing in The Road to Immunity: How To Survive and Thrive in a Toxic World (Pocket Books) sense that your reaction could be chemical sensitivity, a difficult to diagnose but, in their opinion, very real malady. (Of course, a clinician can test you for immune responses to certain chemicals.) Reactions to chemicals produce the typical allergic responses: puffy or red-rimmed eyes; swelling; aching or stiff joints and muscles; irritability or dizziness; respiratory inflammations; headaches and the like. Villains include aerosol sprays, tobacco smoke, glues, insecticides and herbicides, household chemicals and fragrances. Identification and avoidance are key, say the authors. Vitamin C, which binds with chemicals, is one of the best nutritional defenses.
Breathing Problems Expand
Americans now freely take lifesaving medicines such as antibiotics and insulin but, in some people, "they have the potential to alter the immune system, which is where allergies begin," says Dr. McLain. (Consult your pharmacist if you have questions about your prescription medication.) We, as a nation, are also eating more chemicals, from the pesticides drenched on plants to the preservatives poured on prepared foods. We're breathing polluted air, which can lead to or exacerbate asthma, and then we choke on recycled air in sealed buildings. And while a century ago you were likely to have spent much of your time close to home, you can now hop on a supersonic plane and be taken to the other side of the globe within a matter of hours. With travel comes exposure to even more exotic allergens that can drive your immune system to distraction.
The All-Natural Gesundheit
Certain allergy-relief nutrients and herbs can help make life more bearable. Here's how they work: n Vitamin C for the lungs. According to experts, when vitamin C is low, asthma is high. Vitamin C carries the major antioxidant load in the airways and therefore contributes mightily to the health of the lungs. A study in the Annals of Allergy (73(1994):89-96) reported that in seven of 11 clinical trials since 1973, vitamin C supplementation provided "significant improvements" in respiratory function and asthma symptoms. n Vitamin E and carotene to suppress allergic reactions. These antioxidants may also help protect the respiratory tract from caustic pollutants. Vitamin E is reputed to be one of the most important nutrients for antioxidant protection in the lungs. In addition, these two substances decrease production of allergy-related compounds called leukotrienes. n Zinc for the immune system. Research shows that a deficiency in this trace mineral can weaken your immune system, setting you up as a target for allergies and infections. (Some vegetarians may not store sufficient amounts of this mineral and should take supplements.) Zinc comes to the body's rescue by taking part in the production of IgA, the gastrointestinal antibody that lines the digestive tract. "When IgA binds to an allergen, it keeps it from being absorbed into the bloodstream and thus from causing an allergic reaction," report Rothfeld and Levert. Also, zinc protects mucous membranes and helps convert beta carotene to vitamin A, another anti-allergy, immune-boosting nutrient. In a study of 100 participants at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, half took a zinc-based lozenge, while the other half received a dummy preparation. The participants taking zinc experienced a 42% reduction in the duration and severity of their common colds (Annals of Internal Medicine, 7/96). n Quercetin as an antihistamine. A valuable, anti-allergic flavonoid (plant coloring agent that is a powerful antioxidant), quercetin shines as a potent weapon against allergies and asthma. Believed to inhibit histamine release from mast cells and slow the production of other allergy-related compounds, it stabilizes mast cell membranes. Other flavonoid-rich extracts include grape seed, pine bark, green tea and Ginkgo biloba. n Additional helpful nutrients: Vitamin B-12, particularly to combat sensitivity to sulfites (The Nutrition Desk Reference [Keats]); selenium, an antioxidant that breaks down leukotrienes (Clinical Science 77, 1989: 495-500); and magnesium to relax bronchial tissues (Journal of the American Medical Association, 262 : 1210-3).
Herbal Remedies To The Rescue
n Nettles for hay fever relief. Research at the National College of Naturopathic Medicine in Portland, Oregon, showed that 40 of 69 folks suffering from hay fever found moderate to extreme relief from taking freeze-dried stinging nettles (Planta Medica,  44-47). "It is nontoxic, cheap and preferable to antihistamines, which I think are significantly toxic," reports Andrew Weil, MD, in his book Natural Health, Natural Medicine: A Comprehensive Manual for Wellness and Self-Care (Houghton Mifflin). n Cayenne to reduce inflammation. Cayenne, known as hot red pepper, is rich in capsaicin, a potent flavonoid "counter-irritant" that dilates and soothes inflamed nasal and bronchial tissues, according to experts. A bonus: Cayenne also contains a rich amount of antioxidant vitamin C, which can help enhance your immune system. n Echinacea for allergy prevention. This popular Native American herb provides cold and allergy protection, particularly when you take it before encountering allergens. Studies reveal that echinacea aids your body's tissues and protects you from germs and allergens. In fact, German studies have found it possesses valuable antiviral, antibacterial and immunity-boosting properties.
Make Your World Allergy-Free
For the most effective allergy relief, make sure you stay clear of allergens that wreak allergy havoc. Visit an allergy-savvy health practitioner and get tested to find out which substances rock your respiratory world. Plus, allergy experts recommend: n Banish dust mites: sweep out clutter and have your house power-vacuumed, if necessary; wash bedding and linens in very hot water. n De-pollinate your environment: flip on the air conditioner to sift out pollen (keep its filter and any forced air registers clean); exercise indoors; machine dry, rather than line dry, your clothes. n Buy a home air filter, especially if you experience dust, pollen or pet dander allergies. n Avoid allergy triggers that dog your days: cats and canines (or consider the hairless or shed-less breeds), mold and tobacco smoke. No matter what you do or actions you take, allergies may always remain an annoyance in your life. But attention to the foods you eat, the places where you exercise and the right combination of anti-allergy nutrients can limit your discomfort.
Leveling The Leukotrine Playing Field
On a microscopic level, a series of biochemicals implicated in allergic reactions are leukotrienes, substances that may constrict the bronchial tubes (breathing passages). In some people, consuming the food additive tartrazine can cause severe asthmatic breathing difficulties by boosting leukotrine release. In turn, this can interfere with the body's use of vitamin B-6. The process in which lack of B-6 or "errors" in how your body uses B-6 causes allergic reactions and is complex. According to Michael Murray, ND and Joseph Pizzorno, ND in the revised edition of the Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine (Prima), breathing problems may begin when the metabolism of tryptophan (an amino acid) goes awry: "Tryptophan is converted to serotonin, a compound that, among other things, can cause the airways of asthmatics to constrict...Vitamin B-6 is required for the proper metabolism of tryptophan." Accordingly, a study of vitamin B-6, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, shows that people with compromised breathing may possess less B-6 in their blood than others who breathe normally. When people with asthma were given B-6, their wheezing and asthmatic attacks dropped.
Fat Fix For Allergies
The fat in your diet or supplements can also influence your susceptibility to allergies and asthma linked to allergies. Epidemiologists have found that countries where children eat fish at least four times a month cut their risk of asthma by 67% compared to other parts of the world where they consume fewer fish. Research on omega-3 fatty acids, the kind of fat found in fish, flax and hemp oil, demonstrates that some of these substances can improve breathing. In particular, fatty acids called eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) can help open up bronchial tubes. Studies in the American Review of Respiratory Disease and the International Archives of Allergy and Applied Immunology show that breathing passageways may not react so negatively to the presence of allergens when you eat more fish or take supplements containing these types of fats. Many of the scientists who study the kinds of fats we eat believe that the increase in allergies and asthma in the US during the twentieth century may be due to both increasing air pollution (which irritates our lungs) plus a simultaneous increase in our consumption of what are called omega-6 fatty acids. Omega-6 oils are contained in most of the vegetable oils Americans eat, including sunflower and peanut oils. While experts believe that we would be better off consuming a diet containing about five times as many omega-6 fatty acids as omega-3s, today we eat about 40 times as much omega-6s. The chemistry of how these fats influence our allergy susceptibility is complex. It begins in our cell membranes which consist mostly of fat. When we consume omega-3 fatty acids, in our diet or in supplements, and these fats enter cell membranes, the change in structure cuts the availability of arachidonic acid, a fatty acid your body can make and which is found in meat, eggs and dairy products. Eventually, it is thought that this change in cellular metabolism and reduction in arachidonic acid forces the body to make less 4-series leukotrienes, substances which are quite prone to provoking allergic inflammation and, instead, produce 5-series leukotrienes, leukotrienes which don't cause nearly as much trouble. This process requires patience. According to Pizzorno and Murray. "It may take as long as one year before the benefits are apparent, as it appears to take time to turn over cellular membranes in favor of the omega-3 fatty acids."
Chinese Medicine Versus Allergies
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) views allergies as an imbalance of the liver, says Jason Elias, co-author with Katherine Ketcham of The Five Elements of Self-Healing (Harmony Books). "The average American's (liver) deals with about fourteen pounds of chemicals a year. What would normally be a minor irritant becomes major because the liver can't process them anymore," explains Elias. Licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra) has traditionally been used to fight allergies since this herb battles inflammation as evidenced by Japanese research and a study published in the journal Allergy. Much of this anti-allergy action is thought to proceed from licorice's interaction with a biochemical called cortisol, a hormone secreted by the adrenal glands. Cortisol (along with epinephrine, another adrenal hormone) relaxes the muscles controlling airways. By slowing the liver's breakdown of cortisol, licorice prolongs circulation of this hormone which, in turn, can help breathing passages stay clear. In addition, glycyrrhetinic acid, a compound in licorice, slows the body's manufacture of prostaglandins and leukotrienes, substances which exacerbate allergic inflammatory reactions. Ma Huang (Ephedra sinica) has been employed for thousands of years to aid breathing since chemicals in this plant widen breathing passages.
Homeopathic Remedies for Allergy
Homeopathic treatments consist of highly diluted substances designed to coax the body into healing itself. The effectiveness of homeopathy for hayfever has been demonstrated by research published in Lancet performed at the University of Glasgow, Scotland. There, scientists showed that homeopathically-prepared medicines produced statistically significant improvements in allergy sufferers. The appropriate homeopathic remedy for any illness depends on the personality type of the person suffering an allergy. These treatments are among those recommended by Dana Ullman: n Allium cepa: appropriate for burning nasal discharge that grows worse in warm rooms and improves outdoors. Relieves non-burning tearing from eyes, raw feeling in the nose with tingling sensation and violent sneezing. n Nux vomica: used when feeling irritable and chilled, with daytime fluent nasal discharge and night congestion that grows worse indoors. Also for those sensitive to cold and to being uncovered. n Pulsatilla: best for women and children with daytime nasal discharge and night congestion who are gentle, yielding, mild, impressionable and emotional. Used when congestion is worse in warm rooms, hot weather or while lying down.
Food Allergy Conundrum Food allergies can prove to be the toughest allergies to identify and eliminate. Jason Elias believes that people may develop food sensitivities from eating the same foods too often. "If someone has an allergy, I might say 'Let's get you off dairy for three weeks,'" he says, noting that some people have limited their hay fever problems by ceasing to consume dairy products. Many have also found relief by maintaining a food diary, keeping track of which foods are associated with allergy attacks and then eliminating those foods. So the next time you sneeze, don't just reach for your hanky, think back to the meal that you just ate. Your allergy problem may be sitting in your stomach as well as making you sneeze and stuffing your sinuses. Taking these kinds of anti-allergy preventive measures can provide life-enhancing relief that feels like a godsend. That lets you attain your healthy best.
This article included reporting by Judy Pokras.