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Natural home remedies for burns Darrell Miller 5/6/19
These supplements are proven to reduce cortisol levels VitaNet, LLC Staff 9/4/18
What the Health: Watch the Whole Documentary Free On Youtube Darrell Miller 7/5/17
How To Use Activated Charcoal For Pink Eye Darrell Miller 6/20/17
What Is Taurine? Separating Myth from Reality Darrell Miller 6/3/17
Health Ranger awarded U.S. patent for breakthrough anti-radiation formula that eliminates Cesium-137 from your body Darrell Miller 4/5/17
What are heart failure, heart attack and cardiac arrest? Darrell Miller 2/14/17
Lack of Sleep Could Be Doing This to Your Heart Darrell Miller 1/1/17
Are your storable foods mostly just reprocessed GMO corn? Darrell Miller 12/8/16
Powerful natural ways to relieve stress, anxiety Darrell Miller 11/13/16
Signs of Low Blood Sugar Darrell Miller 11/8/13
Interesting Facts About Activated Charcoal Darrell Miller 11/3/13
How Potassium Iodide Helps Under Active Thyroid Darrell Miller 6/18/12
What Supplements Are Useful In Combating Blood Clots? Darrell Miller 10/4/11
Iodine, The Thyroid, And Radiation! What You Should Know! Darrell Miller 7/13/11
Potassium Iodide (KI) Fact Sheet: What You Should Know Darrell Miller 3/28/11
Natural Anxiety Remedies Darrell Miller 11/11/10
L-Carnitine Darrell Miller 5/7/09
Strengthen The Liver and Kidneys With Leucine Darrell Miller 4/27/09
Potassium And Magnesium Darrell Miller 12/30/08
Hoodia Gordonii Darrell Miller 12/10/08
Coconut Oil Darrell Miller 8/18/08
B Vitamin Supplements Darrell Miller 5/7/08
Activated Charcoal - Highly absorbent material to combat poisoning Darrell Miller 4/24/08
Blue Green Algae a Super Food that is Foods Packed With Nutrients. Vegetarian Friendly Darrell Miller 4/11/08
Give Your Health A Boost With Beta Glucan Darrell Miller 2/19/08
Eighty Seven Percent of All Type 2 Diabetes Can Be Prevented Naturally Darrell Miller 1/24/08
Genetically Engineered Foods May Cause Rising Food Allergies Darrell Miller 1/21/08
Green Coffee For Protection Against Oxidative Stress Darrell Miller 11/17/07
Aloe Vera’s Healing Properties Recognized 1500 years before Christ Darrell Miller 4/21/07
Supplements good for reducing stress and boosting energy! Darrell Miller 3/26/07
Testamonial by Wayne. On March 25, 2006 Darrell Miller 9/19/06
Fight for supplements now—it’s a matter of life and death. Darrell Miller 5/20/06
Adverse Reactions to Foods and Dietary Supplements Darrell Miller 8/27/05
HERBAL FIRST AID KIT Darrell Miller 7/11/05
Sources of Essential Fatty Acids Darrell Miller 6/25/05
Breathe Easy Darrell Miller 6/14/05
Recognizing the Signs: Roadmap to a Healthy Heart Darrell Miller 6/13/05
Breathe Easy - Don't underestimate the danger of asthma. Darrell Miller 6/12/05
Immunity - The Big Picture Darrell Miller 6/10/05
Allergy Alleviation Darrell Miller 6/10/05



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Natural home remedies for burns
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Date: May 06, 2019 03:02 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Natural home remedies for burns





In an emergency, there are some home remedies that can help mitigate the effects of burns. The first step is always to cool the burn by running it under cool water for at least 10 minutes. Aloe Vera can be applied to burns to help promote quicker healing and control inflammation. Bathing in oatmeal can help to reduce itching, especially when the burn begins to heal. Raw honey may also have antibacterial properties, while the tannins in witch hazel can reduce swelling and help repair your skin.

Key Takeaways:

  • When one has burns and injuries, they should be treated and given full attention quickly and immediately otherwise there is the risk of infections.
  • The first treatment to give to a burned area is to cool the wound under running water for ten to fifteen minutes.
  • Aloe vera is good for treating burns. It acts as a natural remedy and can easily be found because it can be grown indoors in pots.

"The injured skin is traumatized and using ice on the patient’s skin will constrict blood vessels and decrease blood circulation to an area that desperately needs it."

Read more: https://www.naturalnews.com/2019-03-31-natural-home-remedies-for-burns.html

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=6259)


These supplements are proven to reduce cortisol levels
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Date: September 04, 2018 09:53 AM
Author: VitaNet, LLC Staff (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: These supplements are proven to reduce cortisol levels





These supplements are proven to reduce cortisol levels

Cortisol is a hormone that is highly present in our bodies whenever we are facing some sort of emergency. If we are constantly under large amounts of stress, our cortisol levels can skyrocket, which can lead to troublesome conditions such as chronic anxiety. Fortunately, there are many natural ways to lower cortisol levels in drastic amounts. An herb called ashwagandha has the ability to lower your cortisol levels by up to 30% alone, and it has been used in Ayurvedic for centuries.

Key Takeaways:

  • Cortisol is a hormone that is present within our systems when we deal with high-stress situations.
  • For those who live lives that are highly stressful, the levels of cortisol that our bodies produce can lead to chronic conditions.
  • Rhodiola rosea has the potential to reduce fatigue and stress levels, naturally reducing cortisol levels as well.

"The American Psychological Association reveals that a large percentage of Americans – both adults and children – suffer from chronic stress or symptoms related to it. Chronic stress pertains to extended exposure to stress."

Read more: https://www.naturalnews.com/2018-07-29-these-supplements-are-proven-to-reduce-cortisol-levels.html

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=5744)


What the Health: Watch the Whole Documentary Free On Youtube
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Date: July 05, 2017 05:14 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: What the Health: Watch the Whole Documentary Free On Youtube





What the Health, a documentary about health, is available on YouTube. There are millions of people around the world that have diabetes. We are in the middle of a large epidemic and diet is the biggest contributing factor to that. There are so many foods out there that are bad for you. Bacon, for example, can cause cancer and is very bad for you. If you have deli meats everyday, then you are at risk. Smoking is not the only danger out there.

[video mp4="https://www.healthnutnews.com/what-the-health-watch-the-whole-documentary-free-on-youtube/"]

Key Takeaways:

  • Dr. Robert Ratner suggests we are in the midst of a diabetic Emergency, as there are approximately 350 million sufferers of the disease right now, worldwide.
  • Research pulled from hundreds of countries shows a direct link between processed meat and cancer.
  • The World Health organization takes the link seriously, considering the danger as equal to that of smoking, or being exposed to asbestos.

"From Salmonella and other things you eat, we have about 3,000 people die every year, in the United States, that's more than the number of people that were killed in 9/11 in the Twin Towers of New York."

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=4927)


How To Use Activated Charcoal For Pink Eye
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Date: June 20, 2017 09:14 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: How To Use Activated Charcoal For Pink Eye





There is a way to use activated charcoal for pink eye. Pink Eye impacts many people every year across the country. People might actually wonder if it is something to even worry about. One thing to remember is that Pink Eye is not a serious thing. People that get it do not have to seek emergency treatment and it will go away on its own. But, activated charcoal can get rid of it quickly and easily.

Key Takeaways:

  • In a bowl or large cup, mix a teaspoon of activated charcoal (don’t just use the stuff from your fireplace!) with half a cup of water. Filtered or bottled water is best.
  • Once mixed in, pour the activated charcoal and water solution through a coffee filter into another bowl to strain out the solids.
  • Use an eyedropper to put two to three drops of the solution on your or your family’s eyes three to four times a day.

"Activated charcoal can be used to quickly and effectively treat pink eye, all without a visit to the doctor’s office."

Read more: http://www.thealternativedaily.com/how-to-use-activated-charcoal-for-pink-eye/

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=4857)


What Is Taurine? Separating Myth from Reality
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Date: June 03, 2017 09:14 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: What Is Taurine? Separating Myth from Reality





Taurine is is an amino acid naturally found in meats and dairy products. If a person consumes a normal balanced diet, they are probably meeting their daily taurine requirements. It is regarded as safe to consume, as long as it is used responsibly in moderation.

It does have numerous health benefits, including improved heart health, sedative effects for those afflicted with neurological disorders, lowering of cholesterol and blood pressure, combating gum disease, and improvement of athletic performance (although there seems to be some disagreement on this point).

A growing source of Taurine is in energy drinks. While usage of energy drinks has resulted in a rise in emergency room visits, the amount of taurine used within should pose no health risk and is not considered a contributing factor.

It should be noted that taurine is not completely understood at this time. Its effects on pregnant/breast-feeding women are unknown at this time, and the safe decision would be to avoid usage. It is also theorized that taurine may be detrimental to those battling bipolar disorders. Only further scientific studies will clarify the benefits/risks associated with taurine.

Key Takeaways:

  • There is confusion and fear surrounding the effects of taurine on the human body.
  • The author attempts to dispel myths regarding taurine and its perceived ill effects.
  • Taurine is an amino acid found in many common foods and is produced naturally by our bodies.

"The only amino acid with its own zodiac sign, it’s falsely been associated with the myth of coming from bull urine or bull semen, probably because its name stems from taurus, meaning bull."

Read more: https://draxe.com/what-is-taurine/

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=4759)


Health Ranger awarded U.S. patent for breakthrough anti-radiation formula that eliminates Cesium-137 from your body
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Date: April 05, 2017 06:44 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Health Ranger awarded U.S. patent for breakthrough anti-radiation formula that eliminates Cesium-137 from your body





A patent has just been awarded for a formula called "Cesium Eliminator". The purpose of the formula is to eliminate radioactive cesium isotopes from the digestive tract in the event that contaminated water or food has been eaten, possibly as the result of a nuclear accident, terrorism or other catastrophic nuclear event.

The developer of the formula promises to donate the manufacturing and licensing rights to governments, anywhere in the world, that might want to use it. One of the ingredients of the formula is seaweed, and the developer has a large stockpile of raw materials used to make the product. He plans to donate the product for free to victims of nuclear incidents that might happen in the continental U.S.

The developer claims that this formula will remove 95% of cesium-137 from the digestive tract. This is to see that the cesium doesn't get absorbed into the bloodstream and thereafter deposited throughout the body. Radiation from cesium-137 when exposed to the human body can lead to an increased risk of cancer.

The formula is only to be used in cases of emergency; it's not a nutritional supplement.

Read more: Health Ranger awarded U.S. patent for breakthrough anti-radiation formula that eliminates Cesium-137 from your body

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=4352)


What are heart failure, heart attack and cardiac arrest?
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Date: February 14, 2017 10:59 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: What are heart failure, heart attack and cardiac arrest?





Though all types of heart trouble pose Emergency threats to people's health, there are many differences between them in terms of both causes and symptoms. "Heart failure" refers to some loss of the heart's successful function as a pump; "congestive heart failure" applies more specifically to when blood flow has backed up, causing the swelling of veins. A "heart attack" occurs when blood flow to the heart is cut off - sometimes, this is caused by a spasm. But if the heart suddenly stops beating, that is a "cardiac arrest", and is a problem with the timed electrical signals that make the heart contract.

Key Takeaways:

  • Singer George Michael passed away on Christmas Day, at age 53.
  • His manager, Michael Lippman, cited heart failure as the cause of death.
  • If Michael's heart not only failed but also stopped beating entirely, he would have had minutes for doctors to intervene.

"Blockages causing heart attacks are mostly caused by a buildup of plaque in the arteries."



Reference:

//www.cnn.com/2016/12/26/health/what-is-heart-failure-heart-attack-sudden-cardiac-arrest-explainer/index.html

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=3940)


Lack of Sleep Could Be Doing This to Your Heart
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Date: January 01, 2017 01:59 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Lack of Sleep Could Be Doing This to Your Heart





New mothers, college students and Emergency room doctors all have something in common: sleep deprivation. But is getting little to no sleep on a regular basis bad for your health? The evidence says yes. According to a recent study, getting less than three hours of sleep within twenty-four hours causes increased strain on the heart, elevated blood pressure, and increased heart rates. Thyroid hormones and cortisol also went up, which can lead to stress and eventually heart disease. It is clear that getting enough sleep is in your best interests in the short- and long-term, along with a healthy lifestyle.

Key Takeaways:

  • the occasional all-night without a second-thought about what might happen to our bodies in the process.
  • Our friends at Shape Magazine share their findings about lack of sleep's health consequences.
  • all routinely need to make it through the day on no or very little sleep. And while no one thinks pulling an all-night is good for your health, there's actual evidence that it hurts your heart.

"Getting less than three hours of sleep during a 24-hour period causes immediate heart problems, according to a new study presented at the annual meeting of the Radio logical Society of North America. Researchers looked at 20 healthy adults."



Reference:

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=//www.popsugar.com/fitness/How-Lack-Sleep-Affects-Your-Body-Heart-42871144&ct=ga&cd=CAIyGjM5ZjM5OTY2MWYzZGRiYzA6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNHRqZTqPATMinSR76Dncgb97hvK6w

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=3728)


Are your storable foods mostly just reprocessed GMO corn?
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Date: December 08, 2016 08:59 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Are your storable foods mostly just reprocessed GMO corn?





Stocking up on non-perishable foods seems like an intelligent concept on the surface. But upon closer examination, it may prove that they stored food you buy contains genetically-modified organisms and additives that are toxic to your system. Transgenic corn, corn startch and high-fructose corn syrup are widely used in storable foods, but are nto organic products and are derivatives of "Frankencrops." Many popular brands that sell packaged food use these subtances to increae the shelf life of the food, but the presence of these chemicals in concerning.

Key Takeaways:

  • many people are preparing in advance by stocking up on storable food supplies to back end any potential hiccups in the supply chain. But it's important to remember that not all storable food is the same, and that much of it is actually loaded with things you probably wouldn't want to feed your families – things like genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) and toxic food additives.
  • If you're someone who's already purchased storable food, you might want to take a closer look at the ingredients list to determine whether or not you've made the right choice. If you haven't yet purchased storable food but are interested in doing so, there are excellent options like Numanna Organic Survival Food that are both free of these offending ingredients and surprisingly healthy and nutritious.
  • Wise Food Storage brands itself as having the highest quality survival food on the market. But a quick look at the ingredients lists for the products contained in its "1 Month Emergency Supply of Food and Drinks" reveals much of the same

"not all storable food is the same, and that much of it is actually loaded with things you probably wouldn't want to feed your families"



Reference:

//www.naturalnews.com/056114_Emergency_food_preppers_GMO_corn.html

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=3596)


Powerful natural ways to relieve stress, anxiety
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Date: November 13, 2016 03:04 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (support@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Powerful natural ways to relieve stress, anxiety





Need a few new ways to calm anxiety and stress naturally, without prescription drugs? Here are 10 unique ideas for calming your nerves by activating your senses in new ways. From breathing exercises to keeping a journal and trying some new herbal teas there is sure to be one or two options here that are worth a try for those looking for alternative ways to relax.

Key Takeaways:

  • When Emergency strikes and you feel a panic attack coming, simple breathing exercises can reverse the situation. As reported by Anxieties.com, breathing slowly and steadily can stimulate the body's parasympathetic response, which is also often referred to as the relaxation response.
  • If you want to take your breathing exercises a step further to find inner peace, guided meditation is the answer. Mindfulness meditation has become a widespread practice in the recent years to quiet the mind. A study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggests that mindfulness meditation can help ease psychological issues like anxiety, depression, and pain.
  • Scents have a powerful effect on the brain. Diffusing essential oils in your home and applying a few drops on your wrists, are two of the easiest ways to make you feel calm and confident. The most commonly used essential oils known for their calming and relaxing effect are ylang-ylang, chamomile, lavender, rose, frankincense, and vetiver.

"When Emergency strikes and you feel a panic attack coming, simple breathing exercises can reverse the situation"



Reference:

//www.naturalnews.com/055926_stress_relief_anxiety_natural_remedies.html

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=3438)


Signs of Low Blood Sugar
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Date: November 08, 2013 09:36 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Signs of Low Blood Sugar

Types of Low Blood Sugar

blood sugarIf you live with or know a type 1 or type 2 diabetic, then you should be aware of the signs of low blood sugar so that you are in a position to help if and when an Emergency arises.

Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic illness that affects nearly 8 percent of the United States population, according to the American Diabetes Association. The disease is characterized by the absence of insulin in the bloodstream (type 1 diabetes) or the body's inability to utilize insulin effectively (type 2 diabetes).

Since insulin is the mechanism that allows glucose in the bloodstream, known as blood sugar, to provide food for the brain and energy to the body's organs and cells, diabetics must inject insulin or take other oral medications to counteract any insulin deficiency. All diabetics must also follow a daily regimen that includes a heart-healthy diet and plenty of physical activity to help regulate blood sugar levels.

About Blood Sugar

Normal blood sugar levels are 70 mg/dl to 120 mg/dl. If a diabetic consumes too many carbohydrates or doesn't take enough insulin, blood sugar levels can run high, resulting in a condition known as hyperglycemia. Blood sugar levels below 70 mg/dl is considered hypoglycemia, a life-threatening condition. Fortunately, there are several initial signs of low blood sugar that help the diabetic and those around them know that a medical situation is arising.

Causes of Low Blood Sugar

Some causes of low blood sugar are under a diabetic's control, including: insufficient carbohydrate consumption. Consuming alcoholic beverages. Prolonged strenuous  physical activity. Other causes of hypoglycemia can catch a diabetic by surprise: Mental or emotional stressSevere or prolonged illness

Signs and Symptoms of Hypoglycemia

Most diabetics are able to identify the signs of low blood sugar fairly quickly and treat it before the condition becomes serious -- but not always. If someone's blood sugar levels normally run between 100 mg/dl and 120 mg/dl they might feel the onset of low blood sugar symptoms when they near the 70 mg/dl mark. Diabetics whose blood sugar levels are usually on the lower end of the spectrum, like in the 70 mg/dl to 80 mg/dl range, may not begin to feel symptoms of hypoglycemia until their blood sugar levels are already dangerously low.

The onset of symptoms usually includes:

  • Shakiness or trembling. Hunger dizziness
  • If not treated quickly, signs of low blood sugar can develop into:
  • Headache extreme sweating. A feeling of being disoriented. Denial of any blood sugar level problems. Extreme anger or giddiness
  • If hypoglycemia is not treated at this point or is not responding to treatment, the person can quickly become unconscious, suffer seizures or even fall into a coma which can lead to brain damage or even death.
  • Not everyone will develop all of these symptoms and some people may develop signs that are not on this list. When with a diabetic, just be on the lookout for behavior that is not normal for them. They may resist checking their blood sugar levels. If they do, on the side of caution and continue on with treatment.

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=2882)


Interesting Facts About Activated Charcoal
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Date: November 03, 2013 12:19 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Interesting Facts About Activated Charcoal

 How Activated Charcoal is Made

charcoalActivated charcoal is very similar to normal charcoal which is made from coconut shell, wood, petroleum, peat or coal. To make activated charcoal, the common charcoal is heated in the presence of some gases like argon, oxygen or nitrogen in a variety of processes, namely; physical or chemical activation. These processes open up millions of tiny pores between the present carbon atoms. These pores help the charcoal to easily trap select chemicals in a process known as adsorption. It is known by a myriad of names from Animal charcoal, Gas black to lamp black etc.

Uses of Activated Charcoal

The earliest documented usage of activated charcoal was reported in the early 19th century in England where it was sold as charcoal biscuits. It was generally administered as an antidote to a wide variety of stomach problems and flatulence. It has since gained mainstream usage for a wide variety of ailments and can either be sold as an over the counter drug in certain countries as tablets or capsules or be prescribed by doctors in hospitals. It can also be used for pre-hospital purposes in Emergency treatments.

One of the main uses of activated charcoal has been in treating instances of overdoses and poisonings in the human body. It does this by adsorption (attaching to the poison by chemical attraction) thereby preventing its absorption in the gastrointestinal tract. It is also known to interrupt the enteroenteric circulation of some toxins and drugs thereby preventing poisoning. The correct dosage is usually 1 gram per kilogram of body mass and is usually given once to the patient even though in very acute instances it can be given to the patient more than once. Apart from the adsorption process, activated charcoal can also be used to filter out any harmful drugs from affected person’s blood stream. It is worth noting though that for long term accumulation of toxins in the body through a variety of methods such as toxic herbicide infection, that the use of activated charcoal to reverse the effects will not be successful.

References:

  1. //www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-269-ACTIVATED CHARCOAL.aspx?activeIngredientId
  2. //science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/energy/question209.htm
  3. //en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Activated_carbon

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=2872)


How Potassium Iodide Helps Under Active Thyroid
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Date: June 18, 2012 08:19 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: How Potassium Iodide Helps Under Active Thyroid

Potassium iodide

Potassium iodide is actually an inorganic compound. Also known as KI, its chemical formula, it became the most commercially important iodide compound and was produced around 37,000 tons in 1985. Compared to sodium iodide, KI is less hygroscopic, meaning that it less readily absorbs water. It becomes a precursor to Agl (silver iodide), a useful chemical used in photography. As a medical treatment, it comes in the form of tablet or liquid. In the liquid form, KI is known as SSKI or Thyroshield which is commonly used as preparation the thyroid gland before surgery. In the form of tablet, it is known as thyrosafe or losat and is used to protect thyroid glands from radiation.

Used as disinfectant, KI becomes an antiseptic, like in Betadine. Iodine in Betadine is a common topical disinfectant which is utilized in the hospital operating rooms. It functions to sterilize the skin which will be operated. As water purification, potassium iodide is used to purify water during the Emergency situation. Due to the antimicrobial properties, KI will eliminate the illness-causing microorganisms. For the time being, KI is also medical treatments.

Benefits

As medical treatments, KI can be used to help thyroid deficiency. It refers to as hypothyroidism. The thyroid problems are fast becoming. They can cause hair loss, rapid weight gain, anxiety, depression and ongoing fatigue. These problems are usually associated with under active iodine. Hypothyroidism also makes someone older than healthy individual. Even though the only difference from the normal people is only two degrees, this can cause various effects of our body with different symptoms.

The importance of having sufficient iodine is also supported by Michael Tierra in Planet Herbology. She asserts that underactive iodine is major cause to ovarian and breast cancers. Even mild imbalance level of iodine can make the other hormones like progesterone, estrogen and androgen imbalanced.

Potassium iodide has been medically proven to effectively treat patients with under active thyroids. As Schachter Center for the Complementary Medicine reported, it has been used to treat people with chronic Hashimoto's disease or known as thyroiditis.

HyopThyroidism

In terms of under active thyroid or hypothyroidism, potassium iodide can raise up the production of hormones in the thyroid glands. In order to know how KI works to treat iodine deficiency, we can see from the people with these conditions. Commonly, they have weight gain. Even if they have done workouts, the weight will not reduce. Whereas, sufficient iodine is very important to maintain metabolism and prevents the body fat accumulation, as Burton Goldberg writes in Alternative Medicine. That is why KI is required. KI will increase the iodine level so the thyroid will function as normal and the metabolism will also return in usual state.

Therefore, if you have this kind of thyroid problem, then you have to visit your doctor or medical professional. Alternatively, if you have a overweight problem but never do enough exercise, you should not potassium iodide as supplement to lose your weight. KI is not a weight loss supplement, after all. KI has only to be used when you surely have under active thyroid. That will work for this problem.

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=2654)


What Supplements Are Useful In Combating Blood Clots?
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Date: October 04, 2011 03:14 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: What Supplements Are Useful In Combating Blood Clots?

Vitamins And Your Health

As we know for a fact, one of the properties of blood is its ability to coagulate in order to stop bleeding. This coagulated blood is commonly known as a clot. Blood clot is important to the body to prevent excessive bleeding and serves as a vital part in the process of inflammation and wound healing. However, if a clot occurs abnormally it can cause significant danger to the body. A blood clot can cause obstruction in the circulation and may result to life - threatening health conditions such as heart attacks, cerebrovascular accident or strokes and pulmonary embolism. It can also cause poor tissue oxygenation and perfusion which can damage the affected cells and might cause disability or inability to function of certain organs or body part.

There are many traditional modalities in preventing and treating abnormal blood clot formation. One of the most commonly used is the medication called Aspirin in low – dosage. This conventional drug is popularly prescribed by doctors to decrease the clotting property of the blood. However, in Emergency cases, a surgical procedure may be deemed important to remove the blood clot which significantly interrupts proper blood circulation.

Aside from medications, there are many supplements that have the capacity to decrease the risk of abnormal blood clotting. These include supplements high in:

1. FISH OILS. Fish oils are rich in omega-3 fatty acid which has the capacity to thin the blood. Therefore, if the blood is not viscous, the pressure inside the blood vessel is lesser as well. A high blood pressure can cause damage to the walls of the blood vessels, thus activating blood clot formation. Also, a non – viscous blood can also better circulate into smaller blood vessels than that of a viscous blood, therefore, enhancing tissue oxygenation. Clinical studies also revealed that omega – 3 fatty acids can effectively decrease Thromboxane A which is one of the clotting factors found among platelets.

2. CHAMOMILE. This herb has an anti – platelet property. It has a mild to moderate effect in regulating clot formation.

3. GINGER. Ginger has many health benefits. One of its promising benefits is its mild anti – platelet property and its ability to dissolve fibrin. This herb is widely used as a supplement to enhance blood circulation all over the body.

4. CATECHIN AND QUERCETIN. These chemical compounds are classified as antioxidants. They can effectively reduce the adhesion property of platelets.

5. CURCUMIN. This chemical comes from the spice called turmeric. This is considered to be an anti – thrombotic, as well as a potent anti – inflammatory agent.

6. DEHYDROEPIANDROSTERONE (DHEA). This substance is primarily an anti – aging agent. However, studies reveal that it can significantly reduce the process of inflammation by preventing the substance that can generate inflammation within the veins, arteries and capillaries called Cytokines. With decreased production of cytokines, it will result to lesser coagulation and clumping of platelets and reduced movement of bad cholesterol or Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) into the walls of the blood vessels, thus decreasing the chance of clot formation and atherosclerosis.

7. VITAMINS C AND E. These vitamins are important for preventing abnormal collagen – induced platelet activation by inhibiting the production of hydrogen peroxide. Vitamins C and E are also important in many enzymatic actions that regulate blood cholesterol levels.

(https://vitanetonline.com:443/forums/Index.cfm?CFApp=1&Message_ID=2477)


Iodine, The Thyroid, And Radiation! What You Should Know!
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Date: July 13, 2011 10:34 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Iodine, The Thyroid, And Radiation! What You Should Know!

Solaray - Potassium Iodide 500 mcg 30ct

What Is Potassium Iodide Good For?

Potassium iodide is an inorganic chemical compound which is a non-radioactive form of iodine. This type of chemical compound is very important to the body because it is involved with the production of thyroid hormones. If iodine in the body is low, thyroid hormones cannot be produced therefore levels of these hormones remain low in the blood. The pituitary gland, in return, will continue to produce thyroid – stimulating hormone thus the thyroid gland will also continually be stimulated. Overstimulation or overwork of any part of the body will cause enlargement thus goiter or enlargement of the thyroid gland occurs. These hormones are also important for the regulation of the body’s metabolism and are involved with protein synthesis, as well as fat and carbohydrate metabolism.

Potassium iodide is also important when there is radiologic exposure or nuclear meltdown since radioactive iodine may be freed into the air thus contamination to human beings and surrounding materials can be highly expected. Exposure may then lead to internal contamination which can be harmful to the body cells most especially with the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland readily absorbs iodine whether in radioactive ionizing or non-ionizing form. If potassium iodide is present, it fills the receptor sites of iodine thus preventing the radioactive form of iodine to be absorbed by the body.

The iodine in the receptor sites is good for 24 hours already. The Food and Drug Administration has approved two preparations of potassium iodide which comes in the form of tablet and liquid. The tablet comes in two dosage, 130 milligrams and 65 milligram. It is also scored so that it can be easily divided for smaller doses prescribed. The liquid preparation, on the other hand, contains 65 milligram of potassium iodide per one milliliter. Experts suggest that those who are exposed to high doses of radiation can take potassium iodide immediately after a nuclear meltdown or radiation Emergency.

Potassium iodide is present among common foods especially sea foods. Kelp which is a large type of seaweeds is very rich in potassium iodide. Studies show that its iodine content is about 90 to 8000 microgram per gram of kelp. To note, the recommended daily allowance of iodine is only 100 to 150 micrograms. FDA recommends specific doses after exposure to large amounts of radioactive iodine. For adults, take 130 milligrams, for breastfeeding women, 130 milligrams is also recommended, for children 3 to 18 years old must take only 65 milligram, however, for children who are 150 pounds or more, 130 milligrams of potassium iodide is suggested. Children who are 1 month of age but less than three years old are recommended to take 32 milligrams or one – half of the 65 milligram tablet. Newborns to 1 month old babies are prescribed to have only 16 mg or one – fourth of the 65 milligram tablet.

The effectiveness of potassium iodide relatively depends on the time interval between the onset of exposure and contamination with radioactive iodine and the time when potassium iodide is taken, therefore, it is highly recommended that potassium iodide is taken just prior or immediately after exposure.

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Potassium Iodide (KI) Fact Sheet: What You Should Know
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Date: March 28, 2011 04:53 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Potassium Iodide (KI) Fact Sheet: What You Should Know

Facts About Potassium Iodide (KI)

1. Potassium iodide, or KI is an over-the-counter drug and an additive to food, including dietary supplements.

2. Potassium iodide can be found naturally in many types of seaweed - particularly those grown in iodine rich environments, such as brown algae, kelp and bladderwrack - as well as in some salt water fish.

3. Commercial table salt, specifically iodized salt, and dairy products such as low fat yogurt, milk, and some cheeses also can be significant sources of the recommended allowance (RDA) of iodine.

4. Additionally, dietary supplements can contain seaweed or other potassium iodide sources, and should be calculated in ones daily intake.

5. The amount of potassium iodide in dietary supplements for nutritional and thyroid support is more likely to be measured in micrograms (a microgram is 1/1000 of a milligram).

Radiation and Potassium Iodide (KL)

1. The recommended adult dosage of KI in cases of radiation exposure is 130 milligrams, far higher than the normal nutritional need of 0.15 milligrams, or 150 micrograms, per day for an adult (RDA recommendation).

2. The consequences of iodine poisoning from overdosing can be extremely serious, and include nausea, seizures, vomiting, and shock.

3. KI protects only the thyroid gland against radiation exposure for approximately 24 hours per dose. KI should be taken within three hours of exposure.

For More Information:

1. U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Radiation Safety: www.fda.gov

2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Radiation: www.cdc.gov

**Please note: you should only take KI on the advice of Emergency management officials, public health officials, or your doctor – but never as a preventative measure in the doses recommended for radiation treatment.

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Natural Anxiety Remedies
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Date: November 11, 2010 05:44 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Natural Anxiety Remedies

Anxiety disorder is a much more common problem than what was once thought. It often affects people in their teenage years through middle age and later. Anxiety disorder appears to affect twice as many women as men. However, there may not be that wide of a disparity between the sexes. Psychologists simply believe that men are far less prone to report or even acknowledge that they have a problem of this nature. Anxiety disorders can either be acute or chronic. Acute anxiety disorder manifests itself in episodes that are commonly known as panic attacks. A panic attack occurs when the body’s natural “fight or flight” reaction occurs at the wrong time. This is a complex response in which the body prepares itself to deal with an Emergency situation. Stress can often cause the body to produce more adrenal hormones, especially adrenaline. The increased production of adrenaline causes the body to step up its metabolism of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates to quickly produce energy for the body to use. Additionally, the muscles tense up and the heartbeat and breathing become more rapid.

When faced with an assault, accident, or a natural disaster, this type of reaction is perfectly normal. However, the symptoms that are caused by the surge in adrenaline can be distressing and frightening when they occur at the wrong time. A person having a panic attack is often overwhelmed by a sense of impending disaster or death, which makes it impossible to think clearly. Other feelings that can accompany a panic attack include shortness of breath, a smothering, claustrophobic sensation, heart palpitations, chest pain, dizziness, hot flashes or chills, trembling, numbness or tingling sensations in the extremities, sweating, nausea, a feeling of unreality, and a distorted perception of the passage of time. This disorder can eventually have other cumulative effects such as generalized aches and pains, muscular twitching and stiffness, depression, insomnia, nightmares and early waking, decreased libido, and abnormal feelings of tension with an accompanying inability to relax.

Panic attacks are usually abrupt and intense, occurring at any time of the day or night, and lasting from several seconds up to half an hour. To the panic sufferer, it often feels as though they are much longer. A person having a panic attack sometimes believes that he or she is experiencing a heart attack or stroke. The attacks themselves are very unpredictable, with some people experiencing one every few weeks, and others having several each day. Panic attacks are often triggered by stress or certain emotions, but they can also be a response to certain foods, drugs, or illness.

Many people with acute anxiety disorder become afraid of being alone and visiting public places because they fear having a panic attack. This only adds to the level of anxiety and leads to abnormally restricted lives. Psychologists often believe that at least in some cases, panic attacks are self-induced, meaning that the fear of the panic attack is the very thing that brings it on. The following nutrients are recommended for dealing with anxiety disorders: calcium, magnesium, B1, B12, multivitamin and mineral complex, SAMe, vitamin B, vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc, chromium picolinate, DLPA, L-glutamine, coenzyme A, essential fatty acids, GABA, melatonin, bilberry, ginkgo biloba, milk thistle, catnip, chamomile, cramp bark, kava kava, hops, linden flower, motherwort, passionflower, skullcap, fennel, lemon balm, willow bark, feverfew, St. John’s wort, skullcap, valerian root, and mandarin oil.

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L-Carnitine
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Date: May 07, 2009 05:45 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: L-Carnitine

L-carnitine is amino acid essential for the metabolism of fats into a form of energy necessary for extended aerobic activity. Originally discovered in Russia, and Germany a year later, the structural formulation of carnitine, as it is correctly known, was determined in 1927, although it is physiological and biochemical activity was not understood until the 1960s.

The amino acid is biosynthesized in the liver and kidneys from lysine and methionine. The vitamins niacin, B6, C and iron are essential for this reaction to take place. However, the supply of L-carnitine has to be supplemented by the diet, good sources being dairy products, red meat, nuts and seeds, pulses and fruits such as apricots, bananas and avocado. Most of the L-carnitine supply of the body is stored within the muscle tissue. However, it is not unusual for conditions to arise making it difficult for the body to obtain all the carnitine required.

L-carnitine enables fatty acids to be transported into the mitochondria, where cell metabolism occurs. The biochemistry is discussed below, although in simple terms the amino acid allows body fats, in the form of triglycerides, to be made more readily available for the generation of energy required for extended exertion. In this way, body fats can be used for energy and the supplies of glycogen stored by the liver can be retained for Emergency use.

By providing the energy for endurance and stamina in this way, carnitine makes use of an otherwise unavailable energy source, and has the added benefit of reducing body fat stores and reducing strain on the heart.

Although there is generally a plentiful supply of L-carnitine available in a healthy diet, supplementation can ensure that a deficiency does not occur. Supplements are available in the form of L-carnitine or its acetylated derivative, acetyl L-carnitine.

In order for fatty acids to be used in the production of energy, their long-chain acetyl groups have to get inside the mitochondria where they are oxidized to the acetate to be used for the production of energy via the Citric Acid or Krebs cycle.

In order for the biochemistry to take place, fatty acids must be rendered suitable for binding to the carnitine molecule. The chemical grouping with a good affinity for L-carnitine is the acetyl or acetyl group, available in the molecule acetyl coenzyme A (CoA). The free fatty acid, therefore, is attached to coenzyme-A by means of a thioester bond, catalyzed by means of the enzyme fatty acetyl-CoA synthetase. The reaction is then completed by means of in organic pyrophosphatase.

In this way, the fatty acid in the form of an acetyL-carnitine derivative can be transported through the mitochondrial wall. This transportation takes place by means of several steps. These are:

1. As explained, the acetyl-CoA is attached to L-carnitine by means of the enzyme carnitine acetyltransferase I. This enzyme is conveniently located on the outer mitochondrial membrane.

2. The enzyme carnitine-acetylcarnitine translocase helps the acetyL-carnitine through the membrane.

3. Another enzyme, carnitine acetyltransferase II, located on the inner mitochondrial membrane, converts the acetyL-carnitine to acetyl-CoA, liberating the carnitine which returns to the muscle mass.

L-carnitine is the only known substance that allows fatty acids to cross the mitochondrial membrane, and therefore deficiencies must be avoided.

Another way in which carnitine is used in energy production is in the Krebs cycle itself. Part of this cycle involves the conversion of guanine diphosphate to the higher energy form guanine triphosphate. In this way energy can be stored in much the same way as it is in the conversion of ADP to ATP. Succinyl CoA is involved in this conversion, and one of the by-products of it is a corresponding succinate, that is then converted to a fumarate by the action of L-carnitine fumarate. Carnitine, therefore, has two parts to play in the production of long-term energy from the fatty acids contained in body fats.

Since the fatty acid triglycerides contained in body fats are a major source of energy in the heart and skeletal muscles, it is easy to understand how L-carnitine is believed to lead to the increased energy levels required for stamina and staying power. A major reason for its effect on longer-term or extended energy requirements is that in enabling stored body fats to be used for immediate and longer-term energy requirements, L-carnitine allows Emergency glycogen stores to be retained for use once immediate fatty acid supplies or those of carnitine have been depleted, and so allows the energy supply to be extended even farther. Research has also suggested that the amino acid can possibly be used to treat liver and kidney disease, diabetes and chronic fatigue syndrome.

As with many supplements, the question is often asked how does L-carnitine work in practice as opposed to the claims made for it by the supplement providers? Recent research indicates mixed results, but sufficient to justify its use. It is generally accepted that a supplement is necessary when there is a deficiency, but once that deficiency has been corrected further intake is unnecessary. However, it is also believed that during long and extended periods of exercise a carnitine deficiency does occur as L-carnitine is used up, and the supplement is necessary to ensure sufficient energy supply throughout the period of exercise.

There has also been a case reported in the Journal of Clinical Neurology (Negoro, Tsuda, Kato & Morimatsu, 1995) where a deficiency, caused by anorexia nervosa damaging the liver to the extent that it was unable to synthesize L-carnitine, was remedied by means of an oral supplement. Studies on endurance athletes have been mixed, ranging from no effect to L-carnitine being found to promote weight loss.

Carnitine has no unknown harmful side effects, and has been studied for medical applications other than as an energy supplement. For example it possesses extensive antioxidant properties, and can be used as a supplement against oxidative stress and the prevention of the lipid peroxidation that is a precursor to atherosclerosis.

Its use in osteoporosis and reducing bone mass is also being studied. The concentration of L-carnitine diminishes with age, and affects fatty acid metabolism in a number of tissues. Bones are particularly affected since they require continuous reconstruction. Without detailing the biochemistry involved in this, administration of carnitine helps to reduce the speed by which this occurs. Trials are so far been carried out only on animals.

In studies on both healthy volunteers and patients with type II diabetes, L-carnitine was found to improve storage of glucose in both groups, although its oxidation increased only in the group with diabetes. Other studies carried out include improving the function of neurotransmitters in the brains of elderly patients and in the treatment of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, and other neurological disorders.

In conclusion then, although the jury is out on the use of L-carnitine is an energy-giving or weight-loss supplement, it appears to be effective where the body's stores of carnitine could be depleted such as with long-term exercise, natural deficiencies or deficiencies caused through age. It is also under study in the treatment of various medical conditions. On balance, it would appear that the prospective benefits of L-carnitine render it worthy of use.

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Strengthen The Liver and Kidneys With Leucine
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Date: April 27, 2009 02:08 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Strengthen The Liver and Kidneys With Leucine

L-leucine is an amino acid that is used by the body to fuel exercise and muscle-building to provide you with that athletic edge that gets you ahead of your opponents. It does so in a number of ways, none of them specifically by the direct generation of energy as such.

It is also an essential amino acid, since it cannot be manufactured by your body and hence must be taken as a supplement or as part of your diet. Foods rich in leucine include nuts, whole wheat products such as wholemeal bread, and brown rice. It is a hydrophobic amino acid, meaning that it does not like water.

It is also one of three essential branched chain amino acids, the other two being L-valine and L-isoleucine, and offers many benefits to athletic performance that shall be discussed below It also helps to preserve the body's stores of glycogen, used as an Emergency energy source. Other than these properties, it possesses others, such as the maintenance of the nitrogen balance in the body.

So how does it work to fuel your body while you are exercising? The answer is not as you might think. L-leucine doesn't increase your energy levels as creatine does when it elevates your ATP (adenosine triphosphate) levels. ATP is the molecule of energy that is synthesized in your body cells, and is then converted back to ADP, the diphosphate, with the release of energy in the form of muscular contractions.

This amino acid is what is referred to as a 'limiting' substance, in that the other amino acids cannot do their jobs in your body unless you have sufficient L-leucine in proportion to them. Specifically, you need two parts of L-valine and two parts of L-leucine to one part of L-isoleucine for optimum usage of the food that you eat.

Therefore you cannot just take the supplement without considering how much should be taken to ensure this balance. Excess will be wasted and a deficiency would fail to make proper use of the protein content of your food.

If you suffer from a deficiency, therefore, your body cannot make best use of the protein in your diet to the extent that muscle tissue will not be generated during exercise. In fact it causes catabolism, or the breakdown of muscle tissue, resulting in a loss of performance and possible increase in fatty tissue as opposed to lean muscle. The only way to build muscle is take in sufficient nitrogen in the form of amino acids and protein, along with L-leucine to put that protein to best use.

One of the major properties of L-leucine is in stimulating the synthesis of skeletal muscle tissue and by using a supplement, the protein balance can be positive after a workout. It has been shown that this protein balance is generally negative until specifically L-leucine is consumed.

The way it works is to activate a muscle-generating pathway known as mTOR (mammalian Target of Rapamycin). mTOR is normally activated when the levels of ATP in the muscle cells is high, and when these levels drop then mTOR is deactivated. The activity of mTOR is sensitive to the concentration of L-leucine, and when the concentration of the amino acid in the body rises it informs mTOR that the protein in the diet is sufficient to manufacture skeletal muscle tissue, and so mTOR s activated.

Exactly how this is done is unknown, but is a fact the mTOR depends upon both L-leucine concentration and also ATP levels. This amino acid also decreases catabolism through a number of different mechanisms, one of which involves increasing insulin levels.

In fact, when insulin and L-leucine levels increase at the same time, there is a synergy that promotes the synthesis of new protein. Not only that, but the response of insulin to the presence of carbohydrates is enhanced, this resulting in an enhancement of your body's metabolism.

The amino acid can also be used to help those suffering from kidney and liver problems because it increases liver protein synthesis. It is therefore a useful adjunct both to diabetics and those suffering from liver and kidney disease.

However, because L-leucine is an essential amino acid with so many important properties, a deficiency can have specific consequences. Catabolism has been stated earlier as one such reaction to a deficiency, and others include decreased energy levels and irregularities in the levels of blood sugar.

Everything about this substance is not good however, and when taken by itself in excess, it can reduce the amount of the other amino acids in the blood, particularly of the other two branched chain amino acids (BCAAs). This in turn upsets the balance of amino acids, and reduces further the ability of the body to produce muscle tissue until a balanced supplement is taken.

Leucine also helps to maintain the nitrogen balance. It is essential for the human body to maintain a positive nitrogen balance, and L-leucine supports this. In fact, one study has demonstrated that after 12 hours infusion with L-leucine, nitrogen balance was improved by as much as 23%.

A supplement alone is not always sufficient to maintain a positive nitrogen balance. It is generally essential that you rest your body for a sufficient length of time to allow protein to be generated. If you don't take the required amount of rest, a surplus of protein could be used to maintain energy levels rather than replace lost protein and maintain a good nitrogen balance.

A positive nitrogen balance is essential for the generation of muscle tissue, such as in bodybuilding for example, since all proteins contain nitrogen and the net nitrogen intake must exceed the excretion rate. Not in gaseous form, of course, but in the intake of amino acids and proteins. The more positive your nitrogen balance is, the faster you will recover after exercise. It is essential for anabolic exercise.

L-leucine, therefore, is a supplement that can help to maintain your current muscle mass while undergoing strenuous exercise, in addition to increasing it while resting. It offers other health benefits, one being helping to maintain clarity of thought in the aged. However, it is for its effect on muscular build-up and the athletic edge that provides that the supplement is most commonly taken.

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Potassium And Magnesium
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Date: December 30, 2008 01:08 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Potassium And Magnesium

Potassium and magnesium are the two most common minerals found within the cells of your body. They each have specific individual functions within your body, and together help to maintain the correct balance of electrolytes and the proper functioning of smooth and striated muscles. That includes allowing muscles to relax properly rather than to cramp.

Before discussing this, let's have a look at the major individual properties of these two metallic minerals with respect to the body's biochemistry.

Magnesium is needed to ensure the proper functioning of the sodium/potassium pump. This is a complex topic, and we shan't dwell on it at length here, although the basics are that it is responsible for the movement of ions into and out of cells. Sodium and potassium ions are moved in opposite directions across the cell plasma membrane, three sodium ions being pumped out for every two potassium ions pumped into the cell.

This is of particular importance to nervous cells responsible for transmitting impulses in response to specific stimuli. In the event of a magnesium deficiency, this pumping action is impaired and the sodium/potassium balance within and without the body cells are imbalanced. This in turn impairs the response of nerve cells to stimuli. Both magnesium and potassium can be depleted through the use of diuretics, in which case a magnesium supplement can redress the imbalance.

There are several consequences of such an electrolytic imbalance, some having potentially serious consequences. Many can cause death if left untreated, although the symptoms usually allow appropriate medical treatment prior to the condition becoming fatal, such treatment frequently involving administration of magnesium and potassium. Among these are:

Calcium overload in certain heart cells that reduces the effective use of oxygen and ATP and causes overactive contraction of the heart muscle.

Spasms in coronary blood vessels.

Over-activity of the striated muscle fibers, leading to cramps in the calf and thigh muscles, for example.

Cramp and pain in the smooth muscles of hollow organs such as the bladder or uterus that can also cause premature labor.

Several heart problems caused by an increase in energy consumption and a calcium overload and potassium deficiency that leads to cardiac ischemia and arrhythmia that continue to create a serious medical condition and hazard to life. Potassium, that can stop the heart if given in excess, can be just as harmful if present in too small a concentration.

The whole situation creates a self-perpetuating cycle that can be broken by a magnesium and potassium supplement that restores the correct gradient of potassium and magnesium across the cell membrane, improves the function of the sodium/potassium pump and reduces the excess cellular calcium by replacing it with magnesium.

This only works if both potassium and magnesium are taken together: just either alone is no good. It also takes time for the effect to occur, so the supplement is not suitable for Emergency use. A regular supply can prevent the condition occurring.

There are many other properties that magnesium and potassium possess with regard to the body's biochemistry such as the effect of magnesium in activating certain enzymes. However, in discussing relaxation, both of these essential minerals have a significant part to play.

It has been mentioned that a magnesium and calcium deficiency causes spasms and cramps in the smooth and striated muscles, and the corollary is also true. Magnesium and potassium can be used to relieve such cramps, and relax muscle tissue. Hence, because it can relax excited smooth bronchial muscle tissue, magnesium can be used to relieve asthma attacks. The intravenous administration of magnesium is, in fact, an accepted and proven clinical treatment for acute asthma attacks.

In the same way, magnesium has been used to treat muscle spasms and cramps. Again, it is not an immediate treatment for Emergency use, but can be used over a period of days to treat athletes with a history of muscle spasms. Such spasm frequently occur after prolonged periods of exercise, when magnesium and potassium, among other electrolytes, can be lost through a combination of sweating and urination.

However, this is not the only means by which magnesium is lost from your body cells, and probably not even the main one. Less obvious, but likely of more importance, is the transfer of magnesium from the plasma into the red blood cells (erythrocytes). The amount by which this occurs is directly proportional to the more anaerobic the exercise, hence the need by athletes and weightlifters for more magnesium. It can be rapidly lost through exercise with insufficient oxygen, and cause their muscles to cramp up.

Magnesium deficiency is common in Americans, although factors such as high calcium intake, alcohol intake, diuretics, and kidney and liver disease are more responsible for this than a dietary deficiency. Potassium is readily available in bananas, brown rice, potatoes, tomatoes and oranges and dietary deficiencies are not common although supplements are readily available.

Magnesium is also known to play an important part in the secretion and use of insulin by the body. Supplementation with magnesium can help diabetics to make best use of insulin, become more tolerant to glucose and improve the fluidity of the membrane of red blood cells. The mineral; also has a small but definite effect in lowering blood pressure. Other uses for magnesium supplements include congenital heart failure, where higher magnesium contents lead to greater life expectancy and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) where magnesium supplements can significantly increase energy levels.

Other uses to which your body puts potassium other than to allow proper muscle contraction and relaxation and to maintain the balance of electrolytes in the body, includes the function of brain and nerve neurons. This, however, is academic since should your potassium levels drop by 50%, death would result.

Potassium, Magnesium and Calcium are essential in maintaining the proper workings of your body cells, although the most visible effect of magnesium and potassium is their relaxation properties on the body, put to specific use by sportsmen and women, particularly those involved in the more anaerobic sports.

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Hoodia Gordonii
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Date: December 10, 2008 10:48 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Hoodia Gordonii

Hoodia Gordonii is a South African succulent plant of the family Apocynaceae. They are remarkable similar in appearance to cacti, although they are totally unrelated to them and grow predominantly in the region of Central Namibia in the south west of Africa, up to the southern regions of Angola. They are most commonly found in rocky ground and on the plains.

There are several species of hoodia, some of them grown domestically, and it is Hoodia gordonii that is used as an appetite suppressant in hoodia weight loss pills. Although the plant has historically found use in the treatment of infections and gastric problems, most interest is displayed in its use by the bushmen of the Kalahari Desert to suppress their appetite during long hunting trips when food and water are scarce.

The active ingredient was isolated in 1977, and given the name P57: the product is therefore often referred to as Hoodia P57. It was patented by its discoverers, the CSIR (South African Council for Scientific and Industrial Research) and a license granted to UK company Phytopram, who worked together with Pfizer to isolate the active ingredients and manufacture them synthetically. This was found to be very difficult, if not impossible, since any synthetic form of the extract failed to display any hunger-suppressant properties.

Finally, the rights to the main ingredient were released by Pfizer in 2002, thus indicating that it was of no commercial benefit to them. The main problem they admitted with synthesizing P57 was not only the difficulty in doing so, but also that there were side effects of the extract on the liver caused by other components that could not be removed. No synthetic form of hoodia is therefore available, and only the natural plant is used in current Hoodia 57 preparations.

The rights of the San Bushmen to the plant were recognized by the CSIR in 2002, and not only do they receive a proportion of the profits of marketing hoodia, but also the plant is protected with wild-harvesting licenses provided to only certain individuals and companies. Due to the rising popularity of the hoodia weight loss industry, the plant has been named as an endangered species in the wild.

It is believed that the active ingredients are steroidal saponins that can fool the body into believing it is full. This theory is based upon the effect on appetite of glucose concentrations in the blood. Your appetite is controlled by the amount of unconverted glucose in your blood, and glycogen in the liver. When you eat carbohydrates, they are digested and converted into glucose which is absorbed into the bloodstream.

Under normal conditions your blood glucose levels increase to a level where a signal from hypothalamus stops you feeling hungry. Insulin is then secreted from the pancreas to prepare your cells to use that glucose in the mitochondria to create energy by means of the Kreb's Cycle, or Citric Acid Cycle as it is also known. This reduces the concentration of glucose in the blood, and once it reaches a certain level the body begins to use its Emergency energy supply, glycogen, that is stored in the liver.

A signal then informs the brain that more glucose is needed. You then feel hungry again, and this cycle is repeated several times a day in a normally healthy person. This cycle is controlled by certain hormones in the brain, specifically in the ventromedial center of the hypothalamus, where it is believed that the ATP (adenosine triphosphate) availability controls the release of the hormones involved.

ATP is the molecule of energy, and as the concentration of blood glucose and of glycogen drop, then the amount of ATP produced also drops and this is detected in the hypothalamus, which reacts by releasing ghrelin. Increased leptin increases the feeling of satiety and ghrelin increases the feeling of hunger. Serotonin acts on the brain to increase the effect of leptin in the hypothalamus, and therefore make us feel less hungry, or more satiated.

It is believed that hoodia gordonii, or the Hoodia P57 component of it, fools the brain into believing that your blood glucose or glycogen levels have reached the point at which it should trigger a satiated response, so that you stop eating even though your ATP levels might be low. The steroidal saponins that it contains is believed to be ten thousand times more effective than glucose in stimulated the secretion of serotonin.

Hoodia has also been found to contain a number of glycosides, including pregnane glycosides that some studies have indicated to help control appetite of the subjects tested. Most of these tests have been carried out on animals, although Hoodia weight loss preparations are offered in a form standardized on both steroidal saponins and pregnane glycosides.

Hoodia gordonii is becoming so popular as a weight loss product that its export is being monitored by the South African government. It has become so endangered that, since 2005, only hoodia grown on commercial farms is permitted an export license, and exporters must obtain a license from the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Importers also require a permit from the US department of Agriculture, and a CITES certificate is also needed to re-export the finished product.

Because of this, more hoodia weight loss pills are being sold than there is hoodia gordonii to produce them. It is not uncommon for cacti such as the prickly pear cactus from Mexico, to be used, or for low concentrations of hoodia to be bulked up with fillers. Neither of these is of any use as an appetite suppressant, the former having no active ingredients whatsoever and the latter containing only traces.

If you are purchasing hoodia, therefore, be aware of this. Request sight of the CITES certificate and USDA permit, and also the analysis results by an authorized laboratory to confirm that the product is what it purports to be. Otherwise, there is some evidence that Hoodia gordonii can help you reduce weight, although to date there are only four recognized analytical laboratories registered to analyze the active content of hoodia weight loss products.

Finally, check for the analysis certificates. All Hoodia weight loss products should be analyzed by each of three methods: Microscopy, High Performance Thin Layer Chromatography (HPTLC) and High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) - all there are needed. The four authorized laboratories are: the University of Mississippi, Chromadex labs in Irvine California, Alkemist Pharmaceuticals and Advanced Laboratories, Smithfield, NC.

No others will do, so if your Hoodia weight loss preparation has not been analyzed using the three methods by one of these laboratories, don't buy it, even if it can show the CITES and USDA documentation.



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Coconut Oil
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Date: August 18, 2008 12:01 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Coconut Oil

Whether coconut oil is good for weight loss or not, it is becoming an increasingly popular component of a weight loss diet. So how justified is this in view the fact that fats and oils are not normally regarded as being the best form of food to take if you want to lose weight?

Apart from any other considerations, fats are actually very important components of any diet. Consider, for example, how many vitamins are fat soluble: vitamins A, D, E and K are all fat soluble, and without fats in your diet vitamins would not be able to circulate and be taken to where they do most good. Fats are also essential building blocks for hormones and cell membranes. In short, you cannot survive without fats. Coconut oil is a fat.

In referring to coconut oil here, we are discussing virgin oil, not the refined form that is high in cholesterol. Refined, or processed coconut oils, is hydrogenated, which renders it more in nature to the longer chain fatty acids. Virgin coconut oil contains what are known as medium chain fatty acids (MCFA), which are easily metabolized by your liver into energy.

The longer chain fatty acids, also called triglycerides, are not easily broken down into smaller components, and tend to be stored in the body as fat. This fat can be particularly dangerous if stored round the midriff, and so long chain fatty acids are dangerous to your health. This does not apply to MCFAs, and a possible mechanism for this is discussed later.

An inability to distinguish between the different types of fats and oils in your diet is largely due to a lack of education in the chemistry of fats, and the lumping together of all fats and oils under the 'fatty' flag. Perhaps it is the use of the word 'fat' for the overweight condition and the fact that the triglycerides and other chemicals are known generically as 'fats' that triggers a connection between the two, but although this is logical, and in some cases justified, it is not always the case. There are fats and fats, just as there are lubricating oils and greases, and edible cooking oils and greases.

The fatty acids in coconut oil are composed of relative small carbon chain lengths. Caprylic acid and capric acid contain 8 and 10 carbon atoms in the backbone compared to the 18 of the stearic acid that is commonly contained in animal fats. The longer the carbon chain in the molecule, the more difficult it is to break down, and the more likely it is to be stored in the body as a dense fatty deposit that places a strain on the heart.

Due to the shorter chain length the medium chain fatty acids hold less energy per unit weight. Apart from any other reasons then, coconut oil contains fewer calories than other fats and so if used as the bulk of your fat requirement, will be less liable to generate body fat. Not only that, but as inferred earlier, due to the smaller molecule these calories are more readily released as energy for use by your body rather than stored unused.

However, that is not the whole story on either count: coconut contains saturated fats, and also monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, although in small quantities. These, however, are present in only small amounts, although would still be expected to undergo oxidation and produce the rancid taste commonly found in aged unsaturated oils and fats. However, even after a year this does not happen, which indicates that coconut oil possesses some form of antioxidant properties. This is confirmed by the fact that people eating a diet rich in coconut oil has less of a need for the strong oil-soluble antioxidant vitamin E.

In fact, the metabolism of fats is usually connected with the carnitine transport system in the mitochondria, although the shorter chain fatty acids do not need carnitine for their metabolism. What happens then is that because carnitine promotes oxidation during stress, and causes oxidative damage to body cells, its absence in metabolism of coconut oil fatty acids results in a reduction in the oxidation that degrades unsaturated fats. Hence the lack of rancidity.

Taking this further, then, this lack of oxidation infers that those that take a diet rich in coconut oil (for example using it for cooking rather than animal and vegetable oils containing longer chain fatty acids) should be partially protected against cell oxidation in general. Oxidative effects such as aging, cardiovascular diseases and some cancers should be reduced, and studies have shown this to be the case. Those consuming coconut oil rather than other oils tend to age more slowly, suffer less from heart disease and tend to experience fewer incidences of cancer.

With regard specifically to weight loss, it is believed that consumption of medium chain triglycerides, as opposed to longer chain triglycerides, results in a higher rate of thermogenesis, or the conversion of carbohydrates to energy (fats are also carbohydrates). The first step in this process requires the presence of Coenzyme A in the form of the enzyme acyl-CoA-dehydrogenase, and measurement of the activity of this enzyme has indicated that medium chain triglycerides exhibit much higher expenditure of energy than the metabolism of long chain triglycerides when being converted to fatty tissue. However, though the energy used up in this reaction, known as lipogenesis, was higher, the formation of fatty tissue was the same.

Hence, MCA uses more energy to produce the same amount of fat as LCA, and therefore, although more energy is used up, no new fat is generated by the liver. Since your dietary fat intake can ultimately have only three fates: burned as energy, stored as the Emergency energy source glycogen, or deposited as fat, then it is logical that the more energy generated then the less fat will be stored.

In this way, coconut oil, with a high content of medium chain fatty acids, has a scientific explanation for causing weight reduction when used as a source of fat in the diet rather than animal or other vegetable fats or oils. It is converted to energy rather than fatty tissue, and if you exercise to use up that energy then your weight loss can be significant.

What this theory also states, however, is that coconut oil should be used as a replacement for other fats, and not in addition to it. If you take coconut oil in addition to your normal diet, do not expect to see results.

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B Vitamin Supplements
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Date: May 07, 2008 03:18 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: B Vitamin Supplements

The fact that B vitamins have had to be coenzymated before they can be used by your body has been known for some time, but it is only over the past few years that they have been made commercially available in that form. Before we discuss the B vitamins in their coenzyme form it might be appropriate to discuss what coenzymes are and how they differ from ordinary enzymes.

An enzyme is like an organic catalyst: it takes part in biochemical reactions by allowing such reactions to take place, but itself remaining unchanged. All enzymes are proteins formed in your body from amino acids and other protein material. A coenzyme, on the other hand, is somewhat like an enzyme for the enzymes, in that it is needed for the enzyme to do its job. Without a coenzyme, many enzymes could not promote the biochemical reaction it is responsible for.

The B vitamins are all water soluble, which means that they are readily excreted and it is not impossible that if you take a B vitamin supplement, the whole lot will be immediately excreted in your urine if not used by your body. Whether they are or not it is a fact that your body can quickly become depleted of the B vitamin group, especially if you drink a lot. Alcoholics in particular are frequently vitamin B deficient. Although the liver can store unused vitamin B, they are only very small quantities and insufficient to prevent a deficiency.

A deficiency in the B vitamins can cause a wide range of unpleasant conditions that are rapidly remedied with supplements. Pellagra is due largely to a deficiency in Vitamin B3, and causes hair loss, horrible skin lesions and many other side effects that you don’t want to know about. Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause loss of memory, and is common in alcoholics and some vegetarians (vitamin B12 is animal derived). Other symptoms of a general B vitamin deficiency include exhaustion, heart palpitations, fibrillation, anxiety, restlessness, attention deficit disorder and many, many more.

It is not pleasant so you make sure that take enough vitamin B in your diet: dietary sources are far superior to pills although supplements will help you get over the symptoms of the deficiency until your diet takes over. Supplementation is also a good way to maintain a regular supply of vitamin B complex irrespective of your diet. The effects of a deficiency are so bad that a regular supplement is well worth taking.

However, back to coenzymes and why they are needed for the metabolism of B vitamins in your body. Most B vitamins are, in fact, coenzymes themselves. Keep in mind that the definition of a vitamin is an organic substance that is essential for the normal health of your body. If you lack even one vitamin, your health with suffer and eventually you will be likely to die. That describes all of the B vitamins perfectly, and they also just happen to be coenzymes. This is not coincidence, of course, and their biochemistry must have been recognized before the concept of coenzymes was formulated.

The B vitamins proper consist of eight distinct proteins: B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B6 (pyridoxine), B9 (folic acid), B12 (cyanocobalamin), and biotin and pantothenic acid. They are all essential components in human and animal metabolism, and most are also coenzymes.

Every cell in your body depends on B vitamins for its existence, which is why pregnant women should include a good supply of them in their diet, especially folic acid (B9). They are essential for the cellular development of the fetus. Folic acid is necessary for the synthesis of nucleic acids that allow cell growth and the production of red blood cells. However, not one can be placed in importance above any other since they are all essential.

With respect to the coenzyme factor, the vitamin B coenzymes are responsible for many of the biochemical reactions upon which life depends. Coenzyme B-12 for example is essential for two types of reaction that it catalyzes, one being a hydrogen atom exchange with alcohol and amine functional groups, the other being connected with methyl group transfer between molecules.

In humans, the first of these is responsible for an essential step that results in energy being metabolized from fats and proteins in the mitochondria and the second for DNA production in cells that is indirectly responsible for growth. Each of these is why a vitamin B-12 deficiency leads to excessive fatigue and also a lack of fetal growth (although folic acid can make up for the latter deficiency).

Thiamine (Vitamin B1) is a coenzyme for the metabolism of carbohydrates to energy. In the body it is present in the form of thiamine diphosphate, a coenzyme that assists in the decarboxylation of pyruvate as part of the citric acid cycle, otherwise known as the Krebs Cycle, that takes place in the mitochondria and is responsible for the generation of energy through aerobic respiration.

Another coenzyme that is involved in the Krebs Cycle is formed in the body from Vitamin B3, or niacin. This coenzyme, nicotinamine adenine dinucleotide, has a redox potential and can store energy for use later on. Vitamin B5 can be converted in the body to Coenzyme A that not only breaks proteins down into individual amino acids, but also takes part in the first part of the Krebs Cycle. There is a common pattern emerging here where the B vitamins have an important part to play in the generation of energy from fats and carbohydrates.

Similarly, Vitamin B6 is present in the body as the coenzyme Pyridoxal 5'-phosphate that helps to break down the body’s Emergency energy store, glycogen, into energy when needed.

In these ways, and more, the coenzymes created in the body from the B vitamins help many of the reactions of life to take place, and without these coenzymes life could not exist. Hence the importance of the B vitamins themselves, and any deficiency could be disastrous to the metabolic processes that generate energy and keep you alive. It is not just the energy needed for exercise and normal human activity that will be compromised, but also that which keeps the heart beating and your diaphragm moving to allow you to breath.

Without a doubt, a Vitamin B supplement is one of the most valuable of all the vitamin supplements, and they are available in many forms. You might also find some of the B vitamins in their coenzyme form, though some of them may be unstable. However, whatever form they are taken in, Vitamin B complex should be one of the first on your vitamin supplement shopping list.

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Activated Charcoal - Highly absorbent material to combat poisoning
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Date: April 24, 2008 02:44 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Activated Charcoal - Highly absorbent material to combat poisoning

Activated charcoal has been treated by heat to open up millions of small spaces between the carbon atoms and turn it literally into an atomic sponge that adsorbs both organic and organic impurities.

This heat treatment is carried out in the absence of oxygen, so the charcoal cannot burn. Instead, what oxygen it did contain is driven off leaving behind all of these interstitial gaps that multiply the effective surface area by factors of ten. Since it is the surface area of the charcoal that determines its potency, then the greater this is the better.

Activated charcoal has a massive surface area, and just ten grams has the same surface area as nine American football pitches or 77 tennis courts. Ten grams is just marginally more than a third of an ounce. The term adsorb has a different meaning to absorb, and while a real sponge absorbs water by mopping it up through capillary action and suction, activation carbon adsorbs substances through a form of chemical attraction. You get rid of water from the sponge by squeezing it, but that doesn’t work with activated charcoal, since the substances are bound to it, not just physically constrained.

This huge surface area provides activated charcoal with innumerable bonding sites, and when chemicals that are attracted to carbon pass by they are attached to the surface. They cannot get free again, as water in a sponge can, but are bound to the surface of the carbon. Because the digestive system has no effect on charcoal then whatever is bound to it passes naturally through the body.

It is most effective at binding other carbon-based materials, and other substances with the right electronic arrangement, but others will just pass straight through. Because it is a chemical process, once all of the empty bonding sites have been taken up, the charcoal loses its effectiveness and has to be replaced. It is possible to regenerate it, but hardly worthwhile for you to do so because of the small quantities you use.

Because of the way it works, activated charcoal can help people to recover from some forms of food poisoning. It can adsorb gases in the intestine and help to relieve the pain of excessive gas in the gut. It has many additional uses that will be touched on later, but for now we will look at its effect on poisons because that is where activated charcoal is of greatest benefit to us.

It does not adsorb and neutralize all poisons, but is very effective with those that it can be sued for. Professor Touery proved a point when he drank a lethal dose of strychnine in front of colleagues at the French Academy of Medicine in 1831 and came through unscathed. He had mixed the strychnine with activated charcoal, and the fact that he lived after drinking a dose that would certainly have led to a very painful death within minutes testifies to the powerful effect of activated charcoal as an potential antidote for poisoning.

Ever medicine cabinet should have an Emergency supply of activated carbon, especially those with young children in the household. However, this is not good news for the pharmaceutical companies who have reacted by refuting some of the claims made in its favor: they have claimed that it is not effective against arsenic. If that is so, then how did Michel Bertrand survive after swallowing 5 grams of arsenic trioxide – 150 times what is regarded as the lethal dose? He did this is 1813 after mixing it with activated charcoal, just as Professor Touery was to do 18 years later with ten times the lethal dose of strychnine.

It is true, however, that it does not have this degree of activity with all poisons, and it has no effect on cyanide, alcohols, antifreeze (glycols) and lithium. It also has no effect on corrosive poisons such as the strong alkalis used in oven clearers, or hydrocarbons such as kerosene. The way it works is adsorb the poison and prevent it being released into the body. For that to happen, the poison must have an affinity for carbon, and its adsorption site, and not all substances possess that property. Those that do however are permanently bound and therefore safe.

For charcoal to be effective in neutralizing a poison, it must be swallowed within an hour of taking the poison, or the poison will be too far advanced ion the digestive process for the charcoal to do any good. Keep in mind, though, that it is not selective, and activated charcoal can adsorb nutrients and other beneficial constituents of your body’s chemistry. It is important therefore that you take in only when necessary: you might need several doses if the poison was severe, but once it has done its job it is not meant to be used as a maintenance material to take ‘just in case’. Used like that, it can do harm.

If charcoal can adsorb poisons then it makes sense to believe that it can also adsorb some of the harmful agents that cause food poisoning. Not all food poisoning of course, but certainly those organisms that emit toxins that are attracted to carbon. And this is, in fact, the case. Food poisoning is caused by bacteria rather than viruses, and is not the presence of the bacteria that make you vomit and feel very ill.

As bacteria grow in your body they release toxins, or poisons, into your digestive system. These poisons are what make you ill. They can seriously affect the complete gastro-intestinal tract, causing vomiting, diarrhea, and inflammation and swelling of the small and large intestine. The latter can cause abdominal cramps and severe colic, and the severity of the symptoms depends very much upon the type of bacteria and the number of them in your body.

Many of these toxins are attracted to carbon since they are frequently organic based, and activated charcoal can be used to adsorb them. Once adsorbed they lose their potency, and since carbon is not digested by the body, they are passed harmlessly through the colon and eliminated in the faeces. It can also be used to eliminate many other foreign bodies from your gut, including viruses and fungi and might possibly reduce the concentration of uric acid, which can bring relief to gout sufferers.

Activated charcoal has many uses, and is normally available in capsule form. It can be dangerous to take too much, particularly if you suffer from intestinal problems that cause constipation, because the charcoal itself can have that effect. However, there is no better Emergency treatment for accidental poisoning in the home, although, since it is not suitable for all poisons, you must still regard poisoning as an Emergency and contact the Emergency services.

Activated charcoal, or activated carbon as it is sometimes called, is also a good Emergency treatment for vomiting and the other unpleasant effects of food poisoning. It deals with bacterial toxins in the same way as any other, though once again you must refer to your physician before or after using it – preferably the former.

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Blue Green Algae a Super Food that is Foods Packed With Nutrients. Vegetarian Friendly
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Date: April 11, 2008 11:24 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Blue Green Algae a Super Food that is Foods Packed With Nutrients. Vegetarian Friendly


Blue green algae are not only an excellent source of amino acids and protein, but are generally considered to be the king of superfoods. It contains just about every nutrient you could think of, and has the added advantage of being completely natural and easily assimilated into the body.

In the USA it is harvested in Oregon, in the upper regions of the Upper Klamath Lake, although it is also available in many other parts of the world. Blue green algae are about the best source of vegetable protein and amino acids available to the human diet, although are now generally used as a supplement rather than as a primary food source.

However, in spite of its name, it is not an alga at all: it is a bacterium: Aphanizomenon flos-aquae (AFA), known as cyanobacteria, after the Greek for blue. Nevertheless, bacteria or not, blue green algae offer exceptional nutritional benefits and also health benefits to people suffering from certain conditions. Here are the best of its benefits:

1. It is natural and therefore easily assimilated and digested. You get a very high useful yield from its nutrient content, unlike other foods where a large proportion can be passed through the gut unchanged. In fact a large proportion of the food you eat passes through your body unchanged, although that is mainly due to a lack of chewing!

2. It is very high in protein, and helps to maintain healthy hair, nails and skin. If you are on a vegetation diet this is an ideal source of non-animal protein (unless you class bacteria as animals!). If you want numbers, at least 60% of the solid content of this material is vegetable protein human-ready for use.

3. It is packed full of enzymes that aid digestion, and so ensures that not only is it itself fully digested, but also that you get the most nutritional benefit from any other foods you eat. A lack of enzymes is very common in the western diet, especially the North American diet, and if you take a regular supply of blue green algae, then you need not also take enzyme capsules.

4. It possesses cleansing and detoxifying properties, and so helps to reduce the incidence of headaches and allow you better and more restful sleep. Toxins can act on your body to cause pain, and is associated with the free radicals discussed below.

5. It is very high in antioxidants that destroy the free radicals in your blood and tissues. Free radicals destroy body cells and can seriously damage your health. Among the health benefits that blue green algae provide due to its antioxidant properties are:

a) It supports the immune system and helps to prevent inflammation in your joints. It also enables you to fight off bacterial and viral infections quicker. b) It maintains the integrity of your body and skin cells, and reduces cell damage by free radicals. This has an anti-aging effect and preserves the youthful appearance of your skin, resisting wrinkling and maintaining its firmness. c) Blue green algae help to prevent the free radical oxidation of the LDL lipids that transport cholesterol that cause the atherosclerosis that can lead to heart attacks and strokes.

6. It provides you with energy through its effect on your body’s metabolic conversion of blood glucose to energy within the mitochondria. This is partially due to its antioxidant effect and partially to the nutritional content of the bacteria. The bacteria are also a rich source of glycogen that is your body’s store of Emergency energy. Your liver can use the bacteria to biosynthesize its own store of glycogen that your body can use if called upon for a sudden burst of energy.

7. The amino acids it contains are of low molecular size, and can cross the blood-brain barrier. It provides nutrition to the brain, and its high chlorophyll content helps to purify the blood. Its high content of trace minerals and naturally chelated minerals renders them extremely bioavailable, and able to provide a high degree of nutrition to the brain and other organs of the body. Blue green algae contain rhamnose that helps nutrients to cross from the blood to the brain, and then to the brain cells that need it.

8. Blue green algae have been shown to help memory and mood. This is likely due at least in part to its fatty acid content, and its effect on serotonin levels.

These eight benefits are more than any other individual food source can provide, and in themselves justify the claim that blue green algae is the best individual food source there is. However, when we have a look at the active ingredients, and nutritional content of the bacteria, then it seems even more impressive. There is more to blue green algae than just a few vitamins and minerals. You can get these in any multivitamin supplement: this stuff is completely natural and all of its ingredients are completely compatible with the human digestive system.

Many of the synthetic vitamins you find in boxes and tubs are only partially absorbed due to the form they are in. Either that or they need the presence of other substances before they can be assimilated. An example is calcium, which is next to useless without magnesium and vitamin C also being present to allow it to be incorporated in the structure of the bones and teeth. With blue green algae, every combination of substances that nature needs for them to work properly is there. Everything gets used and everything has a role to play.

The amino acids and proteins have already been mentioned, and these unusual bacteria contain all of the trace minerals that are necessary for the amino acids and proteins to be properly used. It also contains a large quantity of beta-carotene (a natural Vitamin A precursor and strong anti-oxidant), and is also rich in Vitamin B-12 that most vegetarians are deficient in. It is therefore the perfect food for vegetarians and vegans.

If you understand the health benefits of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, which blue green algae are also rich in, then you will understand how a foodstuff containing these fatty acids and all of the other nutritional substances listed above could be regarded as a ‘Superfood’.

Blue green algae is probably the richest food available commercially to humans, but before you use it you should ensure that the content of blue algae in the supplement you purchase is clear and that you are purchasing a standardized amount in what you are purchasing.

Otherwise, it is difficult to see how anybody could go wrong with blue green algae, since it is indisputably an excellent source of protein, amino acids, vitamins and much, much more.



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Give Your Health A Boost With Beta Glucan
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Date: February 19, 2008 04:54 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Give Your Health A Boost With Beta Glucan

Beta Glucan is a little-known component of many common foods we eat on a daily basis. Cereal, mushrooms, and even baker's yeast contain beta glucan. The substance is most common found in such grains as barely and oats. Beta glucan is often used in soluble fiber supplements. The FDA has given baker's yeast the rating for being generally safe (G.R.A.S.).

Beta Glucan has been studied in Japan for its anti-tumor and anti-malignancy properties. It is commonly known worldwide to have a significant impact on improving the human immune system. The clinical applications have been many for this substance. Beta glucan has been studied for preventing infection in post-operative patients. Likewise, it has been attributed with slightly faster, more efficient healing of wounds. Beta glucan has helped patients with septic shock.

This substance has also been studied for its effects on individuals suffering from arthritis. Beta glucan has been attributed with slowing the disease's progress and preventing further damage to tissues. Beta glucan has been studied for decades, however was too expensive for the general public until recent times. It has no known reactions with prescription medications and beta glucan supplements derived from baker's yeast isn't know to contain enough to cause a reaction in those with yeast allergies.

There are also on-going studies regarding beta glucan and it's usefulness with radiation and radiation exposure. There is a great deal of interest that this can perhaps lessen the severity of symptoms from radiation in chemotherapy and help those experiencing nuclear therapy or who are involved in a nuclear Emergency.

Beta glucan is one of the few nutrients that are recommended for both humans and animals. It is also advised for those who have poor daily nutrition, athletes, those regularly exposed to radiation, individuals under stress, or anyone who wants to stay healthy. In truth, studies indicate that consumption of oats, cereal grains, and other beta glucan containing products can lower cholesterol, can aid in overcoming intestinal problems, and can benefit those diagnosed with AIDS and multiple sclerosis.

Beta glucan strengthens the cells responsible for fighting foreign invaders in the body such as viruses, bacteria and even parasites. It helps these cells be more responsive and stronger when free radials enter the body. One study in Canada evaluated the response of beta glucan to Anthrax. As a result, the beta glucan proved to be a very effective supplement to the antibiotics used in treating this disease.

Higher dosages do not equal effectiveness. Beta glucan is not measured by the size or milligram of the supplement. The determining factors for the effectiveness of beta glucan involve how the substance is processed and if the particular pill re-aggregates during the digestive process. If your supplement re-aggregates, it will not have the same effective nature as those that do not.

Be sure to evaluate the labels and inspect the image the company is portraying. If a product is "too good to be true," it is. As always, consult with your physician before starting this or any other long-term supplement.



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Eighty Seven Percent of All Type 2 Diabetes Can Be Prevented Naturally
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Date: January 24, 2008 05:06 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Eighty Seven Percent of All Type 2 Diabetes Can Be Prevented Naturally

It is a fact that almost 90% of Type 2 diabetes can be prevented by attention to diet and the use of specific supplements. However, before having a look at these possibilities, we shall first have a look at what type 2 diabetes is so that the means of prevention can be better understood.

Diabetes is a condition, not a disease. It cannot be passed from one person to another, and there is evidence that it is hereditary since it tends to run in families. In the past it tended to develop later in life, although the modern lifestyle appears to have made it more common now in children and young adults.

Diabetes occurs when the level of glucose in your blood becomes higher than it should be. The reason for this is twofold: either the body produces no or insufficient insulin or it cannot use the insulin that is produced. Sugars and other carbohydrates are metabolized to glucose that is the body’s source of energy. The parts of your body that do this are the mitochondria that are contained within your body cells, and the hormone insulin is essential in allowing this to happen.

When the concentration of glucose in your blood reaches a certain level, the pancreas secretes insulin into your blood. The insulin is synthesized in special cells called the islets of Langerhans, after the person who discovered them. Also produced is glucagon which is also secreted into your bloodstream, and the glucagons and the insulin work together to ensure that your blood glucose levels remain stable (when everything is working correctly).

Glucagon is secreted when your glucose levels are low, and its presence in the bloodstream stimulates the conversion of the Emergency energy store in the liver (glycogen) to glucose in order to maintain this stability. Insulin, on the other hand, is released after you have consumed a meal, and your glucose levels are high. What insulin does is to stimulate the cells of your body to convert glucose to energy and either use it immediately, or store it as glycogen for use later. By means of these two substances, the level of glucose in your blood is maintained at safe levels – normally.

If something happens to the supply of insulin, then the blood sugar level will continue to rise until the bloodstreams contains too much glucose, a condition known as hyperglycemia. The symptoms are excessive thirst, a frequent desire to urinate, fungal infections or thrush around the genital area (due to yeasts and sugar fermentation), and various others such as mood swings, cramps, dizziness and a feeling of tiredness and weakness.

Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body produces no insulin, and the only possible treatment is continual insulin injections. Type 2 diabetes is defined in two ways. Either your body does not make enough insulin for your needs, or the cells in your body cannot use the insulin produced properly. It is Type 2 diabetes we are concerned with here, and that we shall be exclusively discussing. With Type 2 diabetes, insulin shots can be provided, but there are other factors that can also help to resolve the problem.

Before discussion treatment or prevention, you should be aware of the complications that Type 2 diabetes can lead to. Hyperglycemia is not common with this type of diabetes, but it can develop. If it does then it can be a life-threatening condition needing a rapid injection of insulin into the bloodstream Symptoms prior to the critical stage are drowsiness and dehydration, although as stated, this is more commonly associated with Type 1 diabetes where regular insulin injections is the normal treatment.

Longer term complications of Type 2 include kidney damage, hardening of the arteries, eye problems, impotence and problems with your circulation. Nerve damage can also occur, and it is important that you avoid these by changing your diet and lifestyle. These problems occur if you have had high blood glucose levels over a long period of time, and you therefore have time to take the steps necessary to avoid them if you start now. The same steps will also help you to avoid the condition from occurring. So what are these steps you should take?

The first is to look carefully at your diet. A healthy balanced diet is essential if you are to beat your condition naturally and avoid the potential longer term side effects. Diabetes is associated with the overweight and obese. That is not to say that only these people become diabetic, but the majority are. Most people with Type 2 diabetes are overweight, and although around 65% of Americans are overweight or obese, a considerably higher proportion of those with Type 2 diabetes are overweight.

The first and obvious action to take to avoid this type of diabetes would therefore be to lose weight, and adopt a healthy diet that is free from junk food, trans fats and alcohol, all of which contribute to obesity. The next is to look to your blood pressure and keep it normal, and also to keep your low density lipoproteins (LDL) low. These affect the propensity for your blood cholesterol to deposit in your arteries, especially if they are oxidized by free radicals. A good antioxidant content is therefore recommended in your diet. Although blood pressure and high LDL levels do not directly contribute to diabetes, they are risk factors that could increase the risk to your health if you are diabetic.

You should eat a diet that is high in whole grains and fiber, and eat lean meats and fish rather than fatty foods. Stick to complex carbohydrates that metabolize to glucose slowly and steadily, rather than starchy foods that produce a sudden sugar rush that will give you problems and could promote Type 2 diabetes in those that are prone to it.

Specific supplements that you could take include chromium picolinate that can not only be used to treat existing diabetes patients but also to reduce your chances of developing Type 2 diabetes. Studies involving the use of chromium picolinate on patients with this type of diabetes have been very positive, resulting in reduced blood sugar, lipid and insulin levels. The optimum dosage is around 500 micrograms twice daily. Such treatment has been shown to both prevent and reverse Type 2 diabetes.

Magnesium is another specific supplement that studies have suggested can lower the risk of developing this type of diabetes. Magnesium rich foods have also been found to be effective, and the fact that a magnesium deficiency can lead to diabetes supports the findings that its use can help to prevent it. Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, and beans nuts and seeds are generally rich in magnesium.

Vitamin D can also help protect against the development of diabetes. Although the research is relatively new, it has been established that the cells that produce insulin are affected by a lack of vitamin D in the blood, and low levels of vitamin D can also led to insulin resistance. If you spend more time out in the sun, you should have less chance of contracting Type 2 diabetes, although you could also take a supplement.

Although Type 2 diabetes is not as serious as Type 1, no form of diabetes is desirable to have, and ultimately both types can be extremely serious. You should do what you can to avoid diabetes, and Type 2 is easier to avoid then Type 1. Diet, weight and supplementation as described above will all help to avoid contracting this condition, so follow the advice, especially if you are overweight and have a sweet tooth.

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Genetically Engineered Foods May Cause Rising Food Allergies
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Date: January 21, 2008 02:14 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Genetically Engineered Foods May Cause Rising Food Allergies

Arguments made by the Environmental Protection Agency, which regulates plant produced pesticides, tell us not to worry about the thought of consuming toxic pesticides. Instead, they say that the pesticides used, Bt, are produced naturally from a soil bacterium which has a history of safe use by organic farmers who have used the solution for yeas as a method of insect control. Genetic engineers simply remove the gene that produces Bt and insert it into the DNA of corn and cotton plants, making the plant do the work, instead of the farmer. They also say that the Bt toxin is quickly destroyed in our stomach, and even if it survived would not harm humans or any other mammals. However, these arguments are solely that, arguments, which are unsupported and refuted according to a lot of research.

When a study was done, spraying natural Bt over areas in Vancouver and Washington State for months, about 500 people reported reactions, mostly those being allergy or flu-like symptoms. Six of those people had to go to the Emergency room, while workers who applied the Bt sprays reported that their eyes, nose, and throats were irritated. Similarly, farmers who were exposed to liquid Bt said that they had reactions such as infection, ulcers on the cornea, skin irritation, burning, swelling, and redness. One woman even reported fever, altered consciousness, and seizures when she was accidentally sprayed with Bt. This proves that the statements of Bt doing no harm on humans is extremely false. As for being destroyed in the digestive system, studies on mice disproved this as well. Results of these, and other, studies showed that plant-produced Bt is always active and much more likely to trigger an immune response than the natural version.

Additional studies in 2005 reported by medical investigators in India found that hundreds of agricultural workers are developing severe allergic reactions when they are exposed to Bt cotton. This exposure includes picking cotton, loading it, cleaning it, or simply leaning against it. Some people that work at ginning factories must take antihistamines daily in order to go to work. These reactions are only trigger with the Bt varieties and the symptoms are virtually identical to those that were described by the 500 people in Vancouver and Washington who were sprayed with Bt.

Another study was done on the basis that Bt-toxin is produced in GM corn and can be eaten intact. It is also in pollen which can be breathed in. Therefore, a village of Filipino people were studied in 2003 when an adjacent Bt cornfield was pollinating. 100 of these people were stricken with disease which included symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, extreme stomach pain, vomiting, chest pains, fever, and allergies, along with respiratory, intestinal, and skin reactions. The symptoms first appeared in those that were living closest to the field and then progressed to those further away. When the same corn was planted in four other villages the following year, the same symptoms returned in all four areas only during the time of pollination.

All of these studies confirm that GM crops engineered to produce built-in pesticides provoke a great variety of immune responses. Allergic reactions are a defensive and often harmful reaction from the immune system to an external irritant that occur when the body interprets something foreign as harmful and offensive and acts accordingly. Since all GM foods have something foreign and different, it is easy to see why the body would react in such ways. As the GM foods arise on the market place make sure you scan each label to make sure you are not buying a GM vegetable of fruit. Check every label this way you will not be stricken with debilitating symptoms that may prevent you from going to work. Always say NO to GM foods and support your organic foods store.

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Green Coffee For Protection Against Oxidative Stress
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Date: November 17, 2007 11:46 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Green Coffee For Protection Against Oxidative Stress

It is recorded that coffee drinking originated in Ethiopia in North East Africa, from where Arab traders introduced the plant to the Middle East. From there it moved to Turkey in the 15th century, where it was highly prized as a daily beverage due its invigorating properties. It is also believed that the infamous Captain John Smith introduced the plant to Virginia.

The Brazilian coffee trade was due largely to the introduction of the bean to that country by the French in 1727, and the Boston Tea Party of 1773 rendered it the only non-alcoholic drink worth consuming by the patriots of 18th century America. Now over 50% of Americans drink coffee daily, although this seems a somewhat conservative estimate, and the tea houses of England have largely been replaced by coffee shops and the ubiquitous Starbucks.

So much for the history of a beverage that has been prized for its stimulant properties, but recent research has established that not only is coffee a stimulating drink, but that it is a strong antioxidant due to its polyphenol content. However, not all forms of coffee have this property, only the green coffee bean before it has been roasted. Polyphenols are very powerful antioxidants that scavenge the free radicals that destroy body cells, and not only accelerate aging but also threaten the health of your cardiovascular system and the health of other major organs.

Free radicals are compounds with a spare electron. Normally the electrons in all stable molecules come in pairs, and any free electron without a partner is like a lovelorn bachelor. It will seek a mate, and take it from wherever it can find one. Usually it secures its partner by stealing an electron from one of our body cells. This can totally destroy the cell, as it might anybody who has its partner stolen, and cell destruction is not a good thing. It is the destruction of body cells that promotes the appearance that aging brings: the wrinkles and the loss of energy that is generated by healthy cellular activity.

Antioxidants destroy these free radicals, and come in a number of different guises. Vitamins A, C and E are all powerful antioxidants, as are many of the compounds that are essential to our biochemistry such as beta carotene and polyphenols. These polyphenols are found in practically all plants to a greater or lesser degree, and another rich source is grapes, and those found in green coffee beans are what are known as hydroxycinnamic acids the most abundant of which is caffeic acid. Another is chlorogenic acid, and together they form a very potent team in preventing the oxidation by free radicals of LDL (low density lipoprotein).

Low density lipoproteins are those that carry cholesterol from the liver to areas of the body that need first aid due to damage, such the arterial walls. However, this can be attacked by free radicals and oxidized which results in the deposition of excess cholesterol that can build up till it eventually constricts, and sometimes completely blocks, the major cardiac arteries. This is a serious condition known as atherosclerosis that can eventually lead to cardiac disease and arrest or to strokes if the artery is in the brain.

Not only do chlorogenic and caffeic acid help to prevent this from occurring, but they also help to prevent the cellular degeneration caused by the free radicals. They must be extracted from the green coffee bean because roasting or heating in any way, including brewing, destroys them. In fact, brewed coffee contains some potentially harmful substances called diterpenes that some believe can increase your chances of coronary disease by up to fifth if you drink coffee regularly over your lifetime.

It is also believed that green coffee extract can reduce the risk of diabetes due to its effect on your blood glucose levels. Evidence is coming to light that some polyphenols, including chlorogenic acid, might have inhibiting properties on the activity of glucose-6-phosphate, otherwise known as Robison Ester, which is involved in the metabolism of blood glucose and which is affected by diabetes which reduces its concentration. Chlorogenic acid is though to be able to redress this imbalance and not only reduce blood glucose levels, but increase the glycogen stored in the liver as an Emergency energy source for the body.

Green coffee bean extract also possesses other beneficial properties, not the least of which is its effect in increasing the metabolism of fats in relation to carbohydrates. This assists in weight loss and also increases stamina. The decrease in the risk of diabetes of up to 50% in men, and slightly less in women, could be due to a combination of the regulation of glucose-6-phosphate and the regulation of blood glucose levels and glucose and weight management in general. The vast majority of diabetes patients are overweight.

In animal studies, the presence of chlorogenic acid appears to reduce the hyperglycemic peak that arises through the action of glucagon, a hormone used to counter hypoglycemia. The fact that chlorogenic acid reduced this sugar peak indicates its potential use in reducing abnormally high blood glucose levels. Another effect of this was an increase in the animal’s glycogen level and in the level of glucose-6-phosphate in the liver.

This indicates a reduction in glycogenolysis, by which glycogen is ultimately converted to glucose-6-phosphate and glucose, thus increasing the blood glucose levels and also of gluconeogenesis which is the production of glucose from carbohydrates and some glucogenic amino acids. In other words, green coffee bean extract can help to regulate blood glucose levels by preventing the liver from producing glucose from glycogen and carbohydrates.

However, the biochemistry apart, it must be stressed that these benefits are not obtained by drinking coffee, and it has to be repeated that the active agents in providing them are destroyed by the roasting and brewing processes. It is only the green coffee beans that can be used for protection of oxidative stress of human body cells and the gradual degradation into premature aging and many other related conditions.



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Buy Antioxidants

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Aloe Vera’s Healing Properties Recognized 1500 years before Christ
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Date: April 21, 2007 01:53 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Aloe Vera’s Healing Properties Recognized 1500 years before Christ

Fifteen centuries before the birth of Christ, Egyptian writings acclaimed the miracle plant we know as Aloe Vera, even then referred to as an ancient cure. Cleopatra, Alexander the Great and Aristotle were fans of this strange succulent prized for its soothing, healing and analgesic ability. Indians in central and South America used it to treat burns, kidney and bladder infections, dysentery, stomach and intestinal disorders.

The pulp of the plant has been used to reduce swelling and pain from injuries, while in Mexico its used to treat arthritis and gout. For many years people have kept aloe plants around for Emergency burns.

We took a good look at this fascinating botanical wonder. Of the 200 plus varieties, we quickly found that only five or six fit the enzymatic structure for the cosmetic and so-called “medicinal properties” mentioned.

Then while we were studying these succulents in their natural desert setting, we observed the roadrunner bird drinking the juice of the aloe vera, passing up many aloe plants to get to a particular variety, Aloe Barbadensis Miller. We then studied acre after acre and found the roadrunner “peck marks” only on one particular species. The other aloe plants were untouched. In studying this species of plant more carefully, our Houston lab found that, indeed it had much different gel than other aloes.

The products now labeled as Georges Always Active Aloe are exclusively from Aloe Barbadensis Miller, the Roadrunners’ choice. George Warren, an Independent research chemist in Houston, Texus developed the special processing method that prevents the spoilage without diminishing the essential properties of the Aloe Vera plant. This new method completely eliminates the anthraquinones that are mildly toxic and can cause irritation to the digestive tract. Aloins are also removed, which give a bitter taste (and the Greenish color) to Aloe Vera juices along with the starches and sugars from the polysaccharide molecular chain and thus, George “Always Active” Aloe requires no refrigeration, and will not spoil in its natural state. This method adds no water, no preservatives and no chemicals of any kind. The finished product looks and tastes like spring water.

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Supplements good for reducing stress and boosting energy!
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Date: March 26, 2007 02:05 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Supplements good for reducing stress and boosting energy!

Vitality 101

 

More and more Americans are feeling overworked, overtired, and overcome by life’s demands. We just do not have the energy we need to meet our responsibilities to the people we care about. More importantly, we don’t even have the energy to have fun! It seems that a constant feeling of fatigue has become part of the American way of life.

Research has shown that the same processes that cause lack of energy can rob us of sleep, saddle us with excess weight, disrupt our hormonal balance, and create significant amounts of stress in our daily lives. Chronic stress can dramatically contribute to fatigue, sleep disorders, irritability, and anxiety. The research simply confirms what most of us already know – uncomfortable stress can really wear us out mentally and physically! It can take away the satisfaction of a job well done. It can take away our ability to believe in ourselves. And, sadly and maybe most importantly, continual stress can take the fun and joy out of life.

In a separate issue of Ask the Doctor, we discuss the energy and sleeping needs of people suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia. In this issue, I discuss the 3-step process I call “Vitality 101.” People do not have to accept pain, insomnia, or fatigue. It’s time for everyone to feel great and have a life they love!

 

Step 1 – Nutrition

Good overall nutrition is important for everyone! As a foundation product to support energy levels, a powdered drink mix is a pleasant, easy way to ensure that you are taking all of the necessary vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that you need to have great energy all through your day.

The following chart lists the most critical ingredients. You can see that almost all of the vitamins and minerals work together to help improve energy levels and overall health.

Nutrients

Effect on Vitality & Energy

Vitamin A

Essential for healthy skin and mucous membrane integrity, healthy immune system responses and healthy bone growth and healthy reproductive processes. Vitamin A in the form of beta-carotene is an antioxidant and free radical fighter.

Vitamin C

Necessary for the proper functioning of the immune system. Antioxidant, free radical fighter. Assists with hormone synthesis; supports healthy skin integrity; supports healthy iron absorption.

Vitamin D

Essential for healthy calcium and phosphorus metabolism, and the absorption of vitamin A; supports bone mineralization.

Vitamin E

Helps oxygen circulation; supports healthy nerve transmissions; supports healthy leg nerves and muscles; helps boost energy levels.

Magnesium

Supports enzyme activity involved in energy production; supports healthy nerve and muscle function; supports healthy immune system functions

Malic Acid

Catalyst to stimulate the complete burning of fuel for energy; supports healthy connective tissue and muscle functioning.

Betaine

Works with B vitamins to synthesize amino acids, and acts as a precursor to SAM-e. SAM-e (S-adenosylmethionine) is a naturally-occurring molecule in the body, and may have an effect on overall mood elevation

Selenium

Works with vitamin E to maintain healthy cell membranes; supports healthy thyroid functioning.

Zinc

Supports healthy immune system, healthy enzyme processes and healthy immune response.

Amino Acids

Glycine, Serine, Taurine, Tyrosine are essential for the production of energy in the body. Also essential for brain function.

Fructooligosaccharides

Provides nutrition for good bacteria in the intestinal tract, improving digestion and healthy microflora.

In addition to the powdered energy drink mix, it is important that you also take a high potency vitamin B-complex supplement. This should include niacinamide, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, pantothenic acid, and choline, which are especially important to restore the energy production needs of your body. It is also critical to get enough water, as most Americans are chronically dehydrated.

 

B Vitamins

Effect on Vitality & Energy

Thiamine B1

Supports healthy energy, growth, appetite, and learning capacity; healthy red blood cell production; carbohydrate metabolism and the production of hydrochloric acid.

Riboflavin B2

Riboflavin (vitamin B2) is crucial in the production of body energy. Supports healthy glutathione reductase activity, which helps maintain glutathione, a major protector against free radical damage. Vitamin B2 itself also has antioxidant qualities.

Niacinamide B3

Niacinamide is an essential nutrient for the healthy metabolism of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, as well as for the production of hydrochloric acid for digestion.

Pantothenic Acid B5

An essential component in the production of coenzyme A, a vital catalyst that is required for the conversion of carbohydrates, fats, and protein into energy.

Pyridoxine HCL B6

Aids in the conversion of amino acids to carbohydrate or fat for storage or energy. Also required for the production of serotonin, melatonin, and dopamine. Since it aids in the formation of several neurotransmitters it is an essential nutrient in the regulation of mental processes.

Vitamin B12

An essential nutrient for healthy energy production. Vitamin B12 helps support metabolism of carbohydrates and fats. It contributes to healthy cell formation and cellular longevity.

Folic Acid

Folic acid promotes energy production and supports the immune and nervous systems. Folic acid works best when combined with vitamin B12. Recent research shows folic acid can reduce the amount of the amino acid homocysteine in the blood.

 

Step 2 – Rest Your Body

Having trouble sleeping is one of the most troubling symptoms of stress. While the stress is wearing us down and making us tired, it’s also keeping us tense and unable tot relax. The result? That easy drift into sleep becomes harder and harder. And if we are lucky enough to actually get some shut-eye, stress will often wake us up, sometimes several times a night.

This occurs because excess stress suppresses the sleep center in the brain. It is important to break the “stress/insomnia cycle” early, before it results in pain and hormonal and immune dysfunction!

Because good quality sleep is how the body repairs and re-energizes itself, it may be helpful to use herbal products to promote good quality sleep. There are many natural supplements that are marketed as sleep formulas. To get the best results, it is very important that the right ingredients are in the sleep formula you buy. Look for a supplement that has a blend of herbs that promote deep sleep, such as valerian, L-theanine, hops, passionflower, Jamaica dogwood and wild lettuce. This combination of herbs is important as each herb addresses a different aspect of sleeplessness and muscle tension caused by stress. Taking only one or two of these herbs alone is much less likely to be effective.

 

Ingredients

Effect on Sleep

Wild Lettuce

Has been found to have sedative effects.

Hops

Acts as a mild sedative and has a sleep inducing effect.

Jamaica Dogwood

Has been found to be mildly sedative and is often used for anxiousness.

L-Theanine

Causes significant increases of neurotransmitter concentrations in the brain, which promotes muscle relaxation and improves sleep.

Valerian

This herb has been clinically studied for its ability to improve sleep quality.

Passionflower

This herb eases nervousness and insomnia.

 

Step 3 – Manage Excess Stress Levels

In this fast paced world, it is important to learn to manage the stressor in our lives. Glandular extracts, such as raw adrenal extract, can offer natural support to help our bodies deal with the effects of stress and, in turn, can boost your energy levels. Exercise is another stress buster. Using your body physically is important for good health. Find something that is fun for you, however, or you are unlikely to stick with it!

 

Q. Does stress zap my energy in any other ways besides making me lay awake at night and causing me to be a zombie the next morning?

A. Most people are familiar with the body’s dramatic response to an Emergency. The heart pounds, the muscles constrict, and the lungs expand – and while this is happening, we are capable of greater than normal strength and speed. This response is the body’s way of rescuing itself when faced with an Emergency. We don’t have to think about it to make it happen. It’s automatic.

The same can be said of a chronic stress response. Whether we’re late for a business meeting because we’re stuck in traffic, or worrying about how we are going to pay for our children’s college tuition, our response to stress happens automatically. The difference between the two is that the body’s response in an Emergency starts and resolves itself quickly. The response to being stuck in traffic may not.

The body makes the “stress hormone”, cortisol, to handle the normal stresses of day-to-day living. But in an Emergency situation, the adrenal glands, located above the kidneys, secrete increased amounts of this hormone until the Emergency passes. Then the body returns to its normal function. Unfortunately, however, chronic stress is more complex. When our body is subjected to increased amounts of the hormone, cortisol, for an extended time, it can lead to a condition known as “adrenal burnout” or “adrenal fatigue.” While it’s true that very large amounts of cortisol can have damaging effects on our hormones, too little cortisol doesn’t allow us to respond to stress properly. It’s really a matter of balance.

 

Q. How can I control the stress in my life and re-energize?

A. Many people who are under constant stress may have adrenal burnout. Adrenal burnout occurs when the adrenal glands are constantly producing cortisol in response to chronic stress. Over time, this exhausts the adrenal reserve, meaning the adrenal gland can no longer increase cortisol production in response to stress.

The good news is that changes in our hormone levels can return to normal when stress is decreased. The key in learning how to deal with daily stress is to allow the body to return to its normal state. I discuss additional techniques for coping with stress in my recent book Three Steps to Happiness! Healing Through Joy (see my website, www. jacobeitelbaum .com, for more information). In addition to stress control, it is important to supplement your adrenals with a glandular therapy regimen to ensure healthy cortisol levels and adrenal function. Glandular therapy, which uses the concentrated forms of bovine (cow) or porcine (pig) glands, can improve the health of our glands. Pioneers in the field of endocrinology (the study of hormones) hypothesized that glandular extracts work by providing nutrients the body lacked and thus repaired the malfunctioning gland.

 

Adrenal Extract

If you are one of the unlucky folks with stressed-out adrenal glands, you should see great results from taking raw adrenal supplements. Be sure to buy adrenal extract supplement that contains both whole adrenal and cortex adrenal.

 

The best adrenal supplement should also contain vitamin C, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid and licorice. Licorice contains glycyrrhizin, which is broken down into glycyrrhizic or glycyrrhetinic acid. This compound inhibits the activity of an enzyme that turns active cortisol into inactive cortisol. While in high amounts (greater than 100 mg of glycyrrhizic acid/day), licorice administration causes hypertension, no such effects have been observed at lower doses. Experts have speculated that inhibition of the cortisol-converting enzyme may reduce cortisol-related symptoms associated with adrenal insufficiency. The adrenal glands use these nutrients to manufacture cortisone and other compounds. It just makes sense to purchase an adrenal supplement with these supportive ingredients.

 

Ingredients

Effect on Stress

Adrenal Polypeptide Fractions & Adrenal Cortex Extract

Polypeptide fractions are easily digested and help support the thyroid and the adrenal gland to regulate levels of cortisol and other hormones.

Vitamin C

Provides extra support during periods of chronic stress.

Vitamin B6

Required to make serotonin, melatonin and dopamine – all vital for maintaining energy levels – very important in dealing with stress-filled lifestyles.

L-Tyrosine

L-tyrosine is an amino acid that supports nerve transmission and healthy adrenal, thyroid and pituitary glands. Converts to epinephrine and norepinephrine, brain neurotransmitters crucial during times of stress.

Licorice

The component of licorice called glycyrrhizin, which breaks down into glycyrrhizic acid. This compound inhibits the breakdown of cortisol produced by the body, helping balance this important hormone. Glycyrrhizic acid’s mechanism of action is through the inhibition of 11-beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase. This enzyme catalyzes the conversion of cortisol to cortisone. It also inhibits the metabolism of corticol, and minimizes the binding of cortisol to mineral corticoid receptors.

 

Liver Extract

Did your grandmother ever tell you to eat your liver so that you didn’t get “tired blood?” Well, it turns out that she was right. Liver extract is another glandular extract that can help improve energy levels.

Liver extract is an excellent source of highly bioavailable nutrients including iron, B vitamins (especially B12), and other minerals. The stamina and energy-enhancing benefits of liver are widely touted. Liver extract has been shown to support healthy function of the liver and increase the energy levels inside our body.

Because heat will destroy the key components in the liver, a high quality liver extract supplement should be cold-processed and encapsulated to enhance speed and absorption of nutrients from liver. A high quality aqueous liver extract supplement should also contain vitamin B12 to support healthy blood iron and oxygen levels to energize.

Ingredients

Effect on Stress

Liver Fractions

Liver extract may have anti-vital properties and increase the mitochondrial production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is an important carrier of energy in the cells.

Vitamin B12

B12 is necessary for the production of red blood cells and healthy blood oxygen levels.

 

Q. It will be great to get a good night’s sleep. Are there also any other natural alternatives that could help promote relaxation and increase my energy levels during the day?

A. Yes, there are. Rhodiola rosea is an all-natural herb that has long been used to help relieve stress and increase energy. Rhodiola has also been used to lift our moods, improve sexual satisfaction, and even help in certain nervous system disorders. First used in Siberia and Russia, Rhodiola is now being extensively studied and has been found to increase resistance to toxins (both physical and chemical), balance the work of the body, help memory storage and mental functioning, and improve resistance to physical and emotional stress.

In clinical trials, the most effective Rhodiola rosea extract was found to contain 3% rosavins and 1% salidroside. While there are many Rhodiola supplements in health food stores, only those containing these specific amounts can provide the best results.

 

Lifestyle Treatments

Altered digestion, food intolerances, decreased energy, fatigue, cognitive problems, and sleeplessness create the need for changes in daily living routines. These can include alterations in diet; exercise modifications; alterations in activities of daily living according to one’s energy level; and sleep/rest management. All may require the assistance of a professional clinician, such as a chiropractor, nutrition specialist, physical and/or occupational therapist, mental health professional, or sleep therapist.

 

Conclusion

Super busy lives demand super strength nutrition. Begin each day with a powdered nutritional supplement after getting at least 8 hours of sleep each night. In addition to the nutritional beverage mix, a vitamin B complex supplement should be taken every morning. The nutritional drink mix and the vitamin B complex supplement will ensure that your body has all the vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and other nutrients to combat your fatigue. Taking a daily adrenal supplement, like the one discussed earlier, will provide the much needed (and often depleted) nutrients your body may be lacking, and help you recover lost energy. Rhodiola rosea, and ginseng can offer additional natural nutritional support in your busy life to boost your energy levels. These nutritional supplements can be used daily and you will feel energized to get through each day’s challenges and opportunities!



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Buy Energy and Stress Formulas at Vitanet Health Food Store ®

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Testamonial by Wayne. On March 25, 2006
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Date: September 19, 2006 05:49 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Testamonial by Wayne. On March 25, 2006

My name is Wayne. On March 25, 2006, I was working in may shop when a 3-foot crowbar fell from a 10 foot step ladder on top of my head. It didn’t knock me out, which was good because no one was home but me. I had a black and blue spot there for a couple weeks.

Two days later, on a Saturday, I started seeing double. My left eye wouldn’t follow to the left, so I was cross-eyed. My wife, who edits this newsletter, called our Glyconutrition doctor. He asked if I’d had an MRI? So first thing Monday morning she calls the family doctor who cant see me until Thursday. They said to go ahead to the Emergency room and get that done. The attending physician said it could have been a surge of high blood pressure or high sugar. The MRI showed no damage.

We then went to the eye doctor. He said I had 20/20 in both eyes. He crossed his fingers and said he thought it would come back, but It would take a long time. Two other doctors said it would come back in maybe 6 months.

My wife put me on the amounts of Glyconutrients the Doctor recommended. I’ve been a skeptic, but did as I was told. For a month I wore a patch on my eye or on my glasses and it wasn’t fun. I went back to see the eye doctor and asked if he could put a prism on my lens to help the vision. My brother-in-law suggested that since he had the same problem several years ago. That really made a difference.

You should have heard my wife the day she saw that eye beginning to move in about 7 weeks! It kept improving and the first time I looked to the left and it didn’t bother me was july 25, 2006.

There’s a good reason to have a hard head, and God got my attention.

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Fight for supplements now—it’s a matter of life and death.
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Date: May 20, 2006 01:15 PM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Fight for supplements now—it’s a matter of life and death.

More than 100,000 people a year die from obesity. More than 100,000 people a year die from synthetic drugs’ side effects. These staggering numbers are a direct result of food and drugs. Isn’t there a governmental agency that monitors our food and drugs? Oh yes—it’s called the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Judging by the numbers, the FDA needs to immediately start improving the quality of our food supply and imposing stricter safety regulations on the pharmaceutical industry. It’s a matter of life and death.

The mortality numbers associated with obesity and drugs are conservative, the tip of a massive iceberg. All signs indicate that the US, like the Titanic, is on a course for a disastrous collision with an unhealthy food supply and increasingly ubiquitous drugs. At the helm is the FDA, navigating like a dangerously distracted captain. The iceberg looms but instead of steering away, captain FDA scrutinizes a harmless ice cube in his glass—the nutritional supplement industry.

As the Iceberg draws closer, the captain is joined by his crew: Senators Dick Durbin, Tom Harkin and Orrin Hatch. Oblivious to the threat they gather around the captain’s ice cube: “this ice cube could be dangerous. How can we minimize the treat? Ice cubes should probably be controlled by the FDA. Let’s draft legislation that treats this ice cube like a iceberg, just in case.” Meanwhile, we are about to crash full speed into the real danger.

Headed for Disaster

This analogy reflects reality: Durbin, Harkin, and Hatch are drafting non-causal Adverse Event Reporting (AER) legislation that could destroy our health freedom. Under AER, supplements will be associated with adverse events like heart attacks and strokes—even if they had nothing to do with, and did not cause, those events. Treating safe, natural supplements as if they are drugs makes about as much sense as treating an ice cube like an iceberg.

While these senators target natural supplements, American citizens continue to die at alarming rates because of deadly pharmaceutical drugs and an unhealthy food supply. Where are the priorities of these misguided senators and the FDA? Dietary supplements are part of the solution to this problem, helping to support health and ensure proper nutrition.

AER is a health Emergency! Durbin’s legislation could be introduced any day now. We the people, the passengers on this poorly navigated ship , must mutiny, storm the helm, fight against non-causal AER and steer towards health freedom.

We must Take Control!

If we want safe, beneficial nutritional supplements, we must exercise democratic power of the people. AER is poised to implementation. We must rise up together and tell our elected officials that we demand the right to take vitamins! Send Fax today, and send another fax tomorrow to make your voice heard! Fax vitamin adversary Senator Dick Durbin at 202-228-0400, and let him know you will never vote for an enemy of health freedom. Fax key vitamin players in Congress, Senators Tom Harkin at 202-224-9369 and Orrin at 202-224-6331. Let these senators know that their support of non-causal AER will forever tarnish their legacies. Fax Senator Michael Enzi, Chairman of the senate Subcommittee on health, Education, Labor and Pensions, at 202-228-0359. Tell Senator Enzi in no uncertain terms that dietary supplements help keep you and your family healthy, and it is your right to take them.

Visit //www.NHA2006.com/ and use revolutionary technology to enable visitors to rapidly and easily compose letters and faxes to Congress. For health, freedom and liberty, join the NHA.

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Adverse Reactions to Foods and Dietary Supplements
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Date: August 27, 2005 08:27 AM
Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
Subject: Adverse Reactions to Foods and Dietary Supplements

Adverse Reactions to Foods and Dietary Supplements

Answers to common Questions

The Journal of the American Medical Association reports that between 60,000 and 106,000 deaths per year in the United States are caused by prescription drugs. See JAMA, April 15, 1998 – Vol 279, No. 15. Fortunately, adverse reactions to foods and dietary supplements are far more rare than adverse reactions to drugs. However, we each consume a larger variety and quantity of foods than drugs. Because of this, and because each of us can react differently, an allergic or isolated reaction to a food or supplement is a possibility. Here’s helpful information about what to do if you or someone you care for has what appears to be an adverse reaction to a food or dietary supplement.

What types of reactions could I have?

The most common adverse reaction is an allergic reaction. In order to reduce the risk of an allergic reaction, carefully read all labels and buy products from reputable manufacturers who accurately disclose the ingredients in their products. If you need help finding these manufacturers, ask your local health food retailer for recommendations.

How do I know what caused my reaction?

Take time to carefully review what might have caused the reactions. Doctors and experts in toxicology look at several different factors in trying to determine the cause of a particular reaction.

Ask yourself:

1. Is this reaction a side effect of drugs I am taking?
2. Did I eat anything different in the last few days?
3. Have I used any new or unusual cosmetics or other personal care items?
4. Could my symptoms be related to an underlying illness?
5. Am I drinking to much coffee or alcohol or smoking to much?
6. Do I have a healthy diet?
7. Am I sleeping enough?
8. Have I been exposed to anything unusual in the air or my environment?

Asking your self these questions can help limit the number of possible causes and may lead you to an answer more quickly.

What should I do if I have an adverse reaction?

Weather or not you know the potential cause of the reaction, follow these steps:

  • • Seek immediate medical attention where appropriate. If the condition is serious or could become serious, call 911 or go to a hospital Emergency room.
  • • Contact the manufacturer. Responsible manufacturers print a 1800 number on their product bottles and provide knowledgeable staff who can answer questions or direct you to appropriate answers or care. If your product doesn’t include a 1-800 number, contact the retailer where you purchased the product.
  • • Report the problem to the proper government agency. The FDA and other federal agencies are responseible for removing unsafe products from the market.

    How can I reach the FDA or another government agency about my concerns?

    Various state and federal agencies employ personnel who can help respond to concerns or questions about adverse reactions. Following is contact information for some of the agencies:

  • • For emergencies, call FDA at its main Emergency number (1-301-443-1240), 24 hours per day.
  • • For non-emergencies, contact the consumer complaint coordinator at any FDA district office. A complete list of district office phone numbers can be found at: www.fda.gov/opacom/backgrounders/complain.html.

    How can I report an adverse event?

    FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) has an Adverse Event Reporting System (CAERS) that can be contacted in any of the following ways:

  • • By phone at 301-436-2405
  • • By email at CAERS@cfsan.fda.gov
  • • By mail at FDA,CAERS, HFS-700, 2A-012/CPK1, 5100 Paint Branch Parkway, College Park, MD 20740

    You can contact FDA’s MedWatch Program in any of the following ways:

  • • Online at www.FDA.Gov/medwatch/feedback.htm
  • • By phone at 800-FDA-1088
  • • By Mail with a postage-paid FDA form 3500, available at https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/medwatch/
  • • By sending it to: MedWatch, 5600 Fishers Lane Rockville, MD 20852-9787 Or sending it via fax to 1-800-FDA-0178

    For Non-emergencies related to products purchased via internet, fill out an online form on FDA’s website at vm.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/qa-top.html (see link to “form to report unlawful sales”)

    You may also contact any local poison control center, local or state health agencies, the department of Health and Human Services, the Federal Trake Commision, the Consumer Products safety Commission, or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and t hey will forward your report to the FDA.



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    HERBAL FIRST AID KIT
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    Date: July 11, 2005 09:44 PM
    Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
    Subject: HERBAL FIRST AID KIT

    HERBAL FIRST AID KIT

    It is important to know the area where you will be going to determine plants that will be available in case they are needed and access to Emergency help if necessary. The herbal first aid kit is meant to be used for minor conditions that may occur while traveling. Any serious condition should be seen by a health care professional. Gathering herbs along the trail can be fun as well as useful. Simple plant remedies can be brought along in the first aid kit. Major injuries require immediate medical attention by a professional. Minor problems can often be taken care of with simple herbal remedies. Supplies can be obtained from the local health food store or by collecting plants locally.

    Along with the herbs, a few supplies should be part of the kit available at the local drugstore or market.


    1. scissors
    2. thermometer
    3. band aids of all sizes
    4. gauze
    5. tweezers
    6. blister kit
    7. needle
    8. moleskin for blisters
    9. adhesive tape
    10. first aid instruction manual
    11. herbal first aid manual

    ALOE VERA: Aloe is great for minor skin abrasions, burns and as a natural laxative. It is excellent to soothe and repair damage from a sunburn. Aloe can be applied to stings and bites to soothe and heal.

    TEA TREE OIL: Tea tree oil is a natural antiseptic and contains many antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties. It helps to speed the healing process and is excellent to apply externally on wounds to promote healing and prevent infection. It is also a natural bug repellent and can soothe and promote healing after bites and stings.

    ECHINACEA: One of the most often used herbs, echinacea is useful for pre venting infection by stimulating the immune function. It can be found in herbal salve preparations and applied directly to the wound. A salve can also be applied to skin irritations from contact with poison ivy or oak. LAVENDER: Lavender is a natural bug repellent and can be applied topically to bites and stings.

    GINGER: Ginger root is excellent for an upset stomach. It is effective when used to combat motion and altitude sickness. Studies have found ginger to be just as effective when treating motion sickness due to riding in the car, boating or flying in and airplane, as over the counter remedies which often have side effects such as drowsiness. Ginger can be made into a tea or taken in capsule form. ARNICA: Arnica can be applied externally to areas of bruising and swelling, but not to broken skin. It can help to reduce inflammation.

    PLANTAIN: A poultice of plantain can help reduce inflammation when applied to the affected area. It can also help with bites, stings, scratches and cuts. GARLIC: Along with being a natural antibiotic to help prevent infection, garlic also helps to keep mosquitoes away. They don’t seem to like the scent of garlic. Capsules or pills should be taken internally.

    CAYENNE (CAPSICUM): This is effective for both internal and external bleeding. Externally, apply pressure and raise affected area. Sprinkle cayenne powder over the wound. MINT: Mint leaves, often found growing in the wild, can be made into a tea to help with digestion and calm the nerves. Some members of the mint family include peppermint, spearmint, catnip and horsemint.

    FEVERFEW: This daisy like plant found growing in the wild, can help with migraine headaches and inflammation.

    Chew the leaves, make into a tea or take in capsule form. Some have developed mouth irritations from chewing the leaves.

    Tea Tree Oil Fights Staph Infection

    There is much concern regarding the overuse of antibiotics leading to drug resistant strains of bacteria. Some forms of bacteria are difficult to control as they change form. Tea tree oil holds promise as an effective treatment for inactivating Staphylococcus aureus.

    A study reported in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, (1995; 35: 421-45), and lead by Dr. C. F. Carson, researched tea tree oil at the University of Western Australia. The results were significant. Tea tree oil successfully inactivated the staph bacteria which was resistant to methicillin, a salt of penicillin. It is a versatile substance with a broad spectrum of capabilities. It is generally used topically.

    Blueberries for Health

    Blueberries are packed full of nutritional value. A study published in the Food and Nutrition Re s e a rch Br i e f s , January, 1997, found that two-thirds of a cup of blueberries had more antioxidants than the recommended daily amounts of vitamins E and C. Blueberries were followed by Concord grape juice, strawberries, kale and spinach in their antioxidant content.

    Antioxidants are an important part of optimal health. They protect the body from free radical damage which can lead to a variety of conditions such as aging, cancer, heart disease and other diseases. Adding blueberries could aid in p rotecting the body and strengthening the immune response.

    Worldwide Concern About Antibiotic Overuse

    A recent report called for doctors throughout the world to be careful in administering antibiotics needlessly. Overuse of antibiotics has lead to germ mutations resistant and untreatable with current antibiotics. Pediatricians in the United States have received a brochure from the American Academy of Pediatrics urging them to take precautions before prescribing. Antibiotics are not always the answer as they do not work on viral infections which cause the common cold, sore throats and some ear infections. Staphylococcus aureus is one example of an antibiotic resistant strain. Over 90 percent of this staph strain are resistant to penicillin and other antibiotics. And other bacteria are also developing a resistance to antibiotic therapy. Save antibiotics for conditions that require their use.

    Aloe Vera, Woodland Health Series

    Aloe vera is one of the most widely used plants for medicinal purposes. It has been used for over 4,000 year for its therapeutic benefits. Aloe Vera, a pamphlet written by Deanne Tenney, offers valuable information and up to date research on the aloe vera plant.

    The benefits of the aloe plant are truly amazing. It has been used to treat burns, radiation burns, skin disorders, wounds, scratches, sunburn, dermatitis, constipation, digestion, ulcer, kidney stones, bacterial and viral infections, and to relieve pain. It is widely used for skin disorders, but its benefits go far beyond the skin.

    As a natural home remedy, there are few plants more valuable than the aloe. It is a simple and easy way to treat minor injuries. The plant contains antiseptic, antiviral, antibacterial, anesthetic and tissue healing properties. The Aloe Vera pamphlet offers historical as well as modern uses for this ancient plant. Aloe Vera is available through Woodland Publishing.

    Tea Tree Oil, Woodland Health Series

    Tea tree oil is derived from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia, a shrub-like tree found in Australia. It contains significant medicinal value and beneficial properties. Another pamphlet in the Woodland Publishing Health Series, Tea Tree Oil offers historical uses as well as current scientific information.

    The essential oil of the tea tree leaves is one of the most powerful essential oils. It is used extensively in Australia, and popularity is growing throughout the world. It contains antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties helping to prevent and heal infection.

    Tea tree oil has been used successfully for many conditions such as athlete’s foot, acne, burns, warts, vaginal yeast infections, ringworm, skin rashes, herpes, cold sores, canker sores, insect bites and in preventing infection to name a few. Tea tree oil is a natural alternative that can be used effectively for extended periods of time without.



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    Sources of Essential Fatty Acids
    TopPreviousNext

    Date: June 25, 2005 08:38 PM
    Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
    Subject: Sources of Essential Fatty Acids

    Sources of Essential Fatty Acids

    Essential fatty acids are found in both plant and animal sources, although primarily in plants. The EFA family is composed of two main forms, Omega-3 and Omega-6. The following explains exactly what these forms are.

    OMEGA-3: The most common forms of Omega-3 are eicosapentaenioic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and alpha-linolenic acid, which comes from plants and helps create EPA and DHA. Omega-3 is usually derived from fish oils. Dr. Roger Illingworth, associate professor of medicine and biochemistry at Oregon Health Sciences University, explains that Omega-3 fatty acids are “long-chained metabolic products from linolenic acid. . . When animals consume and metabolize plants rich in linolenic acid, they produce Omega-3.” EPA and DHA are liquid and remain that way, even at room temperature. It is said that they protect fish by providing a body fat that stays fluid even in cold temperatures. OMEGA-6: The most common form of Omega-6 is is gammalinolenic acid (GLA). GLA is known to provide the following benefits, among many others:


    1. Helps facilitate weight loss in overweight persons (but not in people who do not need to lose any weight).
    2. Reduces platelet aggregation (abnormal blood clotting).
    3. Helps reduce symptoms of depression and schizophrenia.
    4. Alleviates premenstrual syndrome symptoms.
    5. May help alcoholics overcome their addiction.

    Omega-6 is usually found in plant sources. The oils of coldwater fish such as salmon, bluefish, herring, tuna, mackerel and similar fish are known as Omega-3 fatty acids. The freshpressed oils of many raw seeds and nuts contain Omega-6 fatty acids. The most popular sources of Omega-3 and Omega-6 include:

    BLACK CURRANT SEED OIL: This oil is rich in linoleic acid (44%) and provides almost twice as much gamma-linolenic acid as evening primrose oil. Black currant seed oil also is an excellent source of an Omega-3 precursor known as stearidonic acid. BORAGE OIL: This oil comes from Borago officinalis, a plant with blue flowers. It is widely recommended in Europe to strengthen the adrenal glands, alleviate symptoms of premenstrual syndrome and relieve inflammation. Besides possibly helping with heart and joint function, it may also assist the growth of nails and hair. Borage oil is also an excellent source of GLA. In The Complete Medicinal Herbal, herbalist Penelope Ody asserts that it is “helpful in some cases of menstrual irregularity, for irritable bowel syndrome, or as Emergency first aid for hangovers.” SALMON OIL: This oil is high in Omega-3 essential fatty acids. These types of EFAs are known to thin the blood, prevent clotting, regulate cholesterol production and strengthen cell walls, making them less susceptible to viral and bacterial invasion. Salmon oil has a natural ability to help the body relieve inflammation. In the ground-breaking book The Omega-3 Breakthrough: The Revolutionary, Medically Proven Fish Oil Diet, professor Roger Illingworth writes that Linolenic acid is a fatty acid with 18 carbons and 3 double bonds.

    It is manufactured exclusively by plants. When animals consume and metabolize plants rich in linolenic acid, they produce Omega- 3. Plankton, a minute form of marine life, is part plant and part animal. Its plant component manufactures linolenic acid. Fish eat the plankton, and the linolenic acid breaks down in their bodies in two types of Omega-3 fatty acids: EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) . . . The liquidity of EPA and DHA serves a vital function in fish, who require body fat that remains fluid even in very cold water. Fish oils, besides containing Omega-3 fatty acids, have shown to benefit those suffering from migraine headaches, arthritis, and high cholesterol levels.

    FLAX: Flax is a plant said to date back as far as 5000 B.C. It has been used since approximately 5000 B.C., making it one of the oldest cultivated crops. It is exported from several countries, including Argentina, Canada, India, Russia and the United States. The flowers are usually blue, although they are sometimes white or pink. The mucilaginous seed is, of course, called flaxseed. The oil primarily provides Omega-3/linolenic acid, and provides an average of 57 percent Omega-3, 16 percent Omega-6, and 18 percent of the non-essential Omega-9. Flaxseed oil is said to contain rich amounts of beta carotene (about 4,300 IU per tablespoon) and vitamin E (about 15 IU per tablespoon). In the October 1995 issue of Let’s Live, the history and uses of flax were highlighted by herbalist Carla Cassata. She writes, . . . It’s no wonder the Cherokee Indians highly valued the flax plant. They mixed flaxseed oil with either goat or moose milk, honey and cooked pumpkin to nourish pregnant and nursing mothers, providing them with the needed nutrients for creating strong and healthy children. It was also given to people who had skin diseases, arthritis, malnutrition as well as men wishing to increase virility. They believed flax captured energies from the sun that could then be released and used in the body’s metabolic process.

    This belief has merit. Flaxseed oil, rich in electrons, strongly attracts photons from sunlight. To be effective, EFAs must be combined with protein at the same meal. This flaxseed oil/protein/ sunlight combination releases energy and enhances the body’s electrical system. Also, this combination, along with vitamin E, can be beneficial for infertile couples and women suffering from premenstrual syndrome . . . Flaxseed oil, having an anti-inflammatory effect on the body, can benefit the 40 million Americans suffering from osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. To achieve optimum results, however, substances that activate the sympathetic nervous system—like refined sugar, soda, coffee, fluoride— must be eliminated. Stress must also be reduced, because it too, activates the sympathetic nervous system, promoting inflammation.

    EVENING PRIMROSE: This flower is indigenous to North America, although the oil is particularly popular throughout Europe for therapeutic purposes. It is also known as night wil - low and evening star. It is an excellent source of both linolenic and linoleic acids. Both of these nutrients must be obtained from the diet, as the body cannot synthesize them. The seeds contain gamma linolenic acid. This polyunsaturated EFA helps with the production of energy and is a structural component of the brain, bone marrow, muscles and cell membranes. Evening primrose oil has also benefited those with multiple sclerosis, PMS, hyperactivity and obesity. It is estimated that it takes about 5,000 seeds to produce the oil for one 500 mg capsule.

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    Breathe Easy
    TopPreviousNext

    Date: June 14, 2005 06:19 PM
    Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
    Subject: Breathe Easy

    Breathe Easy

    by Edward Bullard, III Energy Times, March 1, 1998

    Don't underestimate the danger of asthma. When an asthmatic attack chokes the passageways to your lungs, cutting off your air supply, the consequences can prove frightening and disastrous.

    Although asthma is the leading chronic illness among children, most sufferers are adults. The condition ranks as the 7th most common chronic affliction nationwide affecting 14 to 20 million people; about 11 million of these are over the age of 18.

    The American Lung Association estimates that between 1982 and 1992 the total number of asthma cases jumped by more than 57%. Researchers can't pinpoint the reasons for this rise, but they have found that urban dwellers suffer a higher asthma risk.

    Despite the gloomy statistics, those who suffer asthma can take reassurance from the progressive development of complementary and conventional treatments that control this condition. Anyone who suffers asthma should consult with a knowledgeable health practitioner.

    How does asthma start? This airway problem may originate with allergies and sinus or bronchial infections (the bronchi are the tubes leading to the lungs). Some experts believe that air pollution, dust mites, cockroach remains and other environmental toxins may exacerbate the condition.

    A family history of allergies and asthma also increases your asthmatic vulnerability since your genes may make you more prone to the airway inflammation that leads to breathing constraints.

    Allergic reactions to food have been implicated in causing restricted breathing. Food found to most frequently instigate immediate lung difficulties include nuts, peanuts (which are, technically, legumes not nuts), eggs, shellfish and fish. Foods that do not cause immediate wheezing but may produce a delayed respiratory effect include artificial food colorings, wheat, citrus fruits, milk, chocolate and wheat products.

    Since an allergic reaction to particular foods can apparently play a role in asthma, some people find relief by systematically eliminating foods from their diets, identifying troublesome items and then permanently avoiding those foods.

    Asthma's Nutrition Gap

    According to Richard N. Firshein, D.O., director of the Firshein Center for Comprehensive Medicine in New York City, asthma stems from cells' "disordered metabolism." In these circumstances, the body's immune system often mistakes allergens (normally benign substances) for infectious agents. In strenuously defending itself against allergens, the body goes on "red alert," says Dr. Firshein in his book Reversing Asthma (Warner), "exhausting itself in the process." This creates a need for extra vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Too often, he believes, this nutritional need is not met and asthma ensues.

    In the presence of asthma, magnesium can help restore free breathing. Dr. Firshein reports that about 50 years ago, medical researchers discovered that treating asthma victims with magnesium sulfate opened up breathing passageways. Although magnesium by itself does not completely alleviate asthma attacks, many Emergency room doctors still use it in conjunction with other treatments to restore breathing.

    In explaining magnesium's usefulness in alleviating asthma, Dr. Firshein notes that magnesium competes with calcium in each cell to influence asthmatic reactions. For instance, calcium stimulates mast cells (reactive immune cells) to release histamine, a chemical that foments allergic reactions that hinder breathing. Conversely, magnesium "stabilizes" mast cells, quieting their activity so that they retain their histamine instead of flooding breathing passages.

    In addition, calcium takes part in muscle contractions that can constrict breathing tube muscles. Magnesium can help relax those same muscles.

    Although intravenous treatment with magnesium for acute asthma attacks must be carried out by a trained health professional, taking magnesium supplements over a period of time, may gradually help assuage asthma's wheezes.

    How do you tell if you're short of magnesium? Standard blood tests of magnesium levels may be inadequate. As Dr. Firshein points out, normal blood tests only examine the amount of magnesium floating in the blood's plasma. That level can apparently appear sufficient even if red blood cells are magnesium-deficient. (Dr. Firshein recommends asking your health practitioner for a special red blood cell test.)

    Ephedra for Asthma

    Ever since about 3,000 BC, Chinese health practitioners have been giving the herb ma huang (Ephedra sinica) to asthma sufferers. In the 1920s, western medical researchers extracted a chemical called ephedrine from ma huang and soon synthesized this substance for use as a pharmaceutical. However, herbal experts believe that there are other beneficial substances in ma huang besides ephedrine that can ease breathing.

    Although ephedra has been used successfully to ward off the allergies of hayfever as well as mild asthma, when this herb is taken over a long period its benefits may lessen. The reason: eventually the herb's ephedrine weakens the adrenal glands, according to Michael Murray, ND, and Joseph Pizzorno, ND, in the Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine (Prima). To offset this effect, they recommend supporting the use of ephedra with licorice (Glycerrhiza glabra) as well as ginseng (Panax ginseng) which support the adrenals. In addition, vitamins C and B6 and zinc and magnesium plus pantothenic acid also boost adrenal function.

    Licking Asthma with Licorice

    Since much of asthma's deleterious effects on health stem from the fact it inflames breathing passageways, licorice root, which acts to squelch inflammation and which calms allergies, can be helpful in restoring normal breathing. Licorice, according to Drs. Murray and Pizzorno, promulgates the persistence of cortisol in our body, a hormone that acts as an anti-inflammatory agent.

    As an extra benefit, licorice can also forestall the side effects of cortisone, one of the most widely prescribed medicines for asthma. Licorice also boosts cortisone's desirable anti-inflammatory action while inhibiting the action of enzymes that would otherwise increase unwanted inflammation.

    Onions + Garlic = Better Breath

    Despite their reputation for giving you bad breath, both onion and garlic can improve the breath of those afflicted with asthma. The reason: both of these plants restrict the action of an enzyme with the tongue twisting name of lipoxygenase, a chemical that helps produce inflammation.

    Studies with animals showed that when they were fed onion extract, their induced asthmatic problems decreased. Part of onion's benefit may be due to its quercetin content. (Quercetin is a bioflavonoid available as a supplement.) Onion also contains mustard oils, which are believed to slow the body's production of leukotrienes (substances that also increase inflammation).

    Vitamin C

    Vitamin C, the most abundant antioxidant nutrient in the lungs' inner lining, apparently protects against respiratory problems. Studies of people with asthma show that they possess less vitamin C both in their circulating blood and in white blood cells. When researchers induced bronchial constriction in people who volunteered for respiratory studies, they found that those given vitamin C didn't have as hard a time breathing. Experts recommend healthy doses of vitamin C plus other antioxidant nutrients such as vitamin E, carotenoids and selenium to lower the risk of allergic reactions and ease breathing. Antioxidant nutrients restrict the action of free radicals, molecules that attack the lungs and other parts of the cardiovascular system.

    Chinese skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis) also effectively fights inflammation without causing serious side effects. Experts believe its bioflavonoids stop the body from making biochemicals that inflame tissues. Aside from restricting inflammation, these bioflavonoids also act as antioxidants.

    Strength in Numbers

    Asthma support organizations can provide vital information: Organizations American Lung Association 1740 Broadway, New York, NY 10019-43741 (800) LUNG-USA llergy & Asthma Network/Mothers of Asthmatics Inc., 3554 Chain Bridge Road, Suite 200, Fairfax, VA 22030 (703) 385-4403, (800) 878-4403 th/aanma Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America,1125 15th Street, N.W., Suite 502 Washington, DC 20005 (800) 727-8462

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    Recognizing the Signs: Roadmap to a Healthy Heart
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    Date: June 13, 2005 10:06 AM
    Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
    Subject: Recognizing the Signs: Roadmap to a Healthy Heart

    Recognizing the Signs: Roadmap to a Healthy Heart by Louis McKinley Energy Times, January 2, 2004

    From time immemorial, people have tuned into life's lessons that come from the heart. Sadly, times are changing: If you're like most inhabitants of today's harried world, you may be too distracted to detect important clues about your cardiovascular circumstances.

    And while heart lessons may be more complicated than simply connecting the physiological dots, understanding those heart messages are imperative for improving and maintaining your heart health.

    Every cell in your body relies on heart-powered blood flow to keep it supplied with nutrients, oxygen, hormones and other natural chemicals necessary for survival. Without that supply of life-giving substances, few cells in the body-including those within the heart itself-can survive very long.

    And just as damage to a major roadway can cause mayhem with traffic patterns, damage to blood vessels and the heart can wreak a lumpy cardiovascular havoc that blocks the passage of blood and endangers your heart's well-being.

    Your Heart Disease Chances

    Within the last ten years, scientific research performed by investigators around the world has focused on the specific factors that most strongly influence your chances of developing heart disease and suffering either a heart attack or a stroke.

    While much of your risk depends on your genetic inheritance and family history, several factors that determine your heart health are within your control.

    The most important factors you can do something about include:

    * Smoking: free radicals generated by burning tobacco causes significant damage to blood vessels and other cells

    * Lack of exercise: the human body is designed for consistent, moderate physical activity; without exercise, the body slacks off in creating antioxidant protection for arteries

    * Diabetes: when excess blood sugar persists, physiological processes begin that endanger the heart and arteries

    * Cholesterol: when oxidized (a chemical process that has been compared to a kind of internal rusting), cholesterol can form artery-blocking plaque; antioxidant nutrients like vitamin C and natural vitamin E may help the body limit this process

    * High blood pressure: excessive pressure within the blood vessels raises the risk of damage to the heart and arteries; a program of weight loss and exercise can help control blood pressure

    * Being overweight: the extra body fat carried around your middle is linked to a greater risk of heart problems

    Heart Attack Signs

    Do you think you know what a heart attack feels like? Well, if you think it feels like a dramatic pain somewhere in your chest that knocks you to the floor, you're probably wrong. "Most heart attacks do not look at all like what one of my colleagues calls the 'Hollywood' attack-the heart attack you see on television or in the movies," warns Julie Zerwic, MD, professor of surgical nursing who has studied what happens when people develop heart disease and suffer damage to their hearts.

    "The symptoms [of heart problems] are not necessarily dramatic. People don't fall down on the floor. They don't always experience a knife-like, very sharp pain. In fact, many people describe the sensation as heaviness and tightness in the chest rather than pain," she says. And, if you're a woman experiencing a heart attack, you may not even feel discomfort specifically in your chest. Instead you may experience a severe shortness of breath. The apparent ambiguity of the discomforts caused by a heart attack lead many people to either ignore them or take hours to realize they need to go to the Emergency room at the hospital.

    Consequently, much fewer than half of all individuals undergoing a heart attack actually go to a hospital within an hour of the start of the attack. That delay can be a fatal mistake.

    "Timing is absolutely critical," laments Dr. Zerwic. "If treatment starts within a hour after the onset of symptoms, drugs that reestablish blood flow through the blocked coronary artery can reduce mortality by as much as 50%. That number drops to 23% if treatment begins three hours later. The goal is to introduce therapy within two hours."

    However, in Dr. Zerwic's research, only 35% of non-Hispanic whites go to the hospital within an hour of the start of a heart attack. And among African-Americans, the number of people going to the hospital right away drops to a frighteningly low 13%.

    Often, people will lie down or use a heating pad to relieve the tightness they feel in the chest," says Dr. Zerwic. "They may take some medicine and wait to see if that works. All these steps postpone needed treatment."

    Signs of a possible heart attack include:

    * Chest discomfort: Heart attacks most frequently cause discomfort in the center of the chest that can either go away after a couple of minutes (and come back) or persist. The discomfort may feel like strong pressure, fullness or pain.

    * Upper body discomfort: An attack may set off pain or discomfort in either or both arms, and/or the back, neck, jaw or stomach.

    * Shortness of breath: Chest discomfort is frequently accompanied by shortness of breath. But it's important to note that shortness of breath can take place even in the absence of chest discomfort.

    * Other signs: You can also break out in a cold sweat, or feel nauseated or light-headed.

    A Woman's Sleep Signs

    If you are a woman who suddenly experiences a marked increase in insomnia and puzzling, intense fatigue, you may be in danger of an imminent heart attack.

    In an attempt to understand how women's symptoms of heart problems differ from those of men, researchers talked to more than 500 women in Arkansas, North Carolina and Ohio who had suffered heart attacks. (Technically, what they had experienced is referred to as acute myocardial infarction.)

    They found that chest pain prior to a heart attack was only reported by about 30% of the women surveyed.

    More common were unusual fatigue, sleep disturbances and shortness of breath (Circulation Rapid Access, 11/3/01).

    "Since women reported experiencing early warning signs more than a month prior to the heart attack, this [fatigue and sleep problems] could allow time to treat these symptoms and to possibly delay or prevent the heart attack," says researcher Jean C. McSweeney, PhD, RN, nursing professor at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock. In Dr. McSweeney's study, more than nine out of ten women who had heart attacks reported that they had had new, disturbing physical problems more than a month before they had infarctions.

    Almost three in four suffered from unusual fatigue, about half had sleep disturbances, while two in five found themselves short of breath.

    Other common signs included indigestion and anxiety.

    "Women need to be educated that the appearance of new symptoms may be associated with heart disease and that they need to seek medical care to determine the cause of the symptoms, especially if they have known cardiovascular risks such as smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, overweight or a family history of heart diseases," says Dr. McSweeney.

    Dr. McSweeney warns that, until now, little has been known about signs that women are having heart trouble or heart attacks. The fact that most of Western medicine's past attention has been on heart problems in men has obscured the warning signs in women. As part of Dr. McSweeney's studies, she and her fellow researchers have discovered that more than 40% of all women who suffer a heart attack never feel any chest discomfort before or during the attack.

    "Lack of significant chest pain may be a major reason why women have more unrecognized heart attacks than men or are mistakenly diagnosed and discharged from Emergency departments," she notes. "Many clinicians still consider chest pain as the primary symptom of a heart attack."

    Vitamins for Diabetes and Heart Disease

    Having diabetes significantly raises your chance of heart disease, which means that keeping your blood sugar levels under control can reduce your chances of suffering a heart attack.

    Today, 17 million Americans have diabetes and, as the country's population in general gains weight and fails to exercise, the number of people suffering this problem continues to grow.

    The first line of defense against diabetes consists of exercise and weight control. All you have to do is take a brisk walk for 30 minutes a day to drop your chances of diabetes (American Journal of Epidemiology 10/1/03).

    "We have found that men and women who incorporate activity into their lifestyles are less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who are sedentary. This finding holds no matter what their initial weight," said Andrea Kriska, PhD, professor of epidemiology at University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.

    To help your body fight the development of diabetes, researchers also recommend vitamin C and natural vitamin E.

    Researchers working with lab animals at the University of California at Irvine have found that these antioxidant vitamins can help insulin (the hormone-like substance secreted by the pancreas) reduce harmful blood sugar. In addition, these vitamins shrink the chances of organ damage that can be caused by diabetes (Kidney International 1/03).

    In this investigation, these vitamins also helped reduce blood pressure, another risk factor that raises heart disease risk.

    "Blood pressure was lowered to normal, and free radicals were not in sufficient numbers to degrade the sugars, proteins and nitric oxide," notes Nick Vaziri, MD, professor of medicine at the University of California. "We think this shows that a diet rich in antioxidants may help diabetics prevent the devastating cardiovascular, kidney, neurological and other damage that are common complications of diabetes."

    Free Radical Blues

    Dr. Vaziri and his group of researchers found that untreated diabetes raised blood pressure and increased the production of free radicals, caustic molecules that can damage arteries and the heart. Free radicals can change blood sugar and other proteins into harmful substances, boosting tissue and heart destruction.

    In Dr. Vaziri's work with lab animals, he found that treating diabetes with insulin lowered blood pressure and helped keep sugar and protein from changing into dangerous chemicals, but allowed the free radicals to subvert nitric oxide, a chemical the body uses to protect itself from free radicals.

    In this investigation, adding vitamins C and E to insulin insulated the body's sugars, proteins and nitric oxide from oxidative assault. This produces a double advantage: Lowering the risk of heart disease and other damage to the body from diabetes.

    Maitake, an Oriental mushroom that has been shown to have many health benefits, can also be useful for people with diabetes who are trying to avoid cardiovascular complications. Laboratory studies in Japan demonstrate that maitake may help lower blood pressure while reducing cholesterol (Biological & Pharmaceutical Bulletin 1997; 20(7):781-5). In producing these effects, the mushroom may also help the body reduce blood sugar levels and decrease the risk of tissue damage.

    No Smoking!

    Tobacco smoke is one of the most notorious causes of heart problems. In the same way a hard frost exerts a death grip on a highway, the smoke from cigarettes can freeze up arteries and hamper their proper function. A healthy artery must stay flexible to comfortably allow adequate circulation.

    But "...when blood vessels are exposed to cigarette smoke it causes the vessels to behave like a rigid pipe rather than a flexible tube, thus the vessels can't dilate in response to increased blood flow," says David J. Bouchier-Hayes, MD, professor of surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, who has studied the deleterious effects of tobacco.

    This rigidity is called endothelial dysfunction. When arteries are rigid, blockages gum up vessels, clots and other impediments to blood flow appear, and your risk of heart attack and stroke increases (Circulation 2001 Nov 27; 104(22):2673).

    This condition can also cause chest pain (angina) similar to that caused by a heart attack, and should be evaluated by a knowledgeable health practitioner.

    Although all experts recommend you stop smoking to lower your heart disease risk, some studies have found that Pycnogenol(r), a pine bark extract that helps the body fight inflammation, may ease some of smoking's ill effects.

    In a study of platelets, special cells in the blood that can form dangerous blood clots, researchers found that Pycnogenol(r) discouraged platelets from sticking together (American Society for Biochemical and Molecular Biology 5/19/98). By keeping platelets flowing freely, this supplement may alleviate some of the heart-threatening clots that tobacco smoke can cause.

    In Ayurvedic medicine, a traditional therapy from India, an herb called guggul has also been used to lower the risk of blockages in arteries. This herb, derived from the resin of the mukul tree, has been shown to reduce cholesterol by about 25%. People taking this herb have also reduced their triglycerides (harmful blood fats) by the same amount (Journal Postgraduate Medicine 1991 37(3):132).

    The Female Version of Heart Disease

  • Medical experts who have examined heart disease in men and women have found some striking differences.
  • For one thing, women often don't suffer from the crushing chest pain that for most people characterizes a heart attack; instead, many women experience back pain, sweating, extreme fatigue, lightheadedness, anxiety or indigestion, signs that can be easily misread as digestive troubles, menopausal symptoms or indicators of aging.

    The genders also differ in how heart disease poses a threat. While men seem most endangered by the buildup of blockages in arteries, women apparently are more at risk from endothelial dysfunction. But more study needs to be done since, in many cases, researchers have been unable to pin down the precise mechanism that causes many women to die of heart disease.

    Scientists have found that the number of women in their 30s and 40s who are dying from sudden cardiac arrest is growing much faster than the number of men of the same age who die of this cause. But research by the Oregon Health & Sciences University and Jesse E. Edwards Cardiovascular Registry in St. Paul, Minnesota, shows that while doctors can pinpoint the coronary blockages that kill men, they can't find specific blockages in half of the female fatalities they have studied (American Heart Journal 10/03).

    "This was an unexpected finding. However, the study underscores the need to focus on what is causing these younger women to die unexpectedly because the number of deaths continues to increase," says Sumeet Chugh, MD, a medical professor at Oregon.

    Since the failure of arteries to relax probably contributes to heart disease in many women, eating red berries, or consuming supplements from berries such as chokeberry, bilberry or elderberry, may be important in lowering women's heart disease risk. These fruits help arteries expand and allow blood to flow freely.

    Red berries are rich sources of flavonoids, polyphenols and anthocynanins. The anthocyanins are strong antioxidants that give the berries their color. Research at the Indiana University School of Medicine have found that these chemicals can interact with nitrous oxide, a chemical produced by the body, to relax blood vessels (Experimental Biology conference 5/20/02).

    Working Out

    As researchers work to devise lifestyle roadmaps that can steer you around the perils of heart disease, they are finding that exercise is a key path to avoiding cardiovascular complications.

    A 17-year study of about 10,000 Americans found that those who exercised and kept their weight down (or took weight off and kept it off) experienced a significantly lower risk of heart problems (Preventive Medicine 11/03).

    "The fact is that those who both exercised more and ate more nevertheless had low cardiovascular mortality," says Jing Fang, MD, of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx, New York. Burning calories in physical activity may be the secret to reducing heart disease risk and living longer, she says.

    Dr. Fang's research used information collected from the First National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey in 1975 and then computed how much people exercised, how their body mass indices varied and which of these folks died of heart disease during the next two decades.

    In the study, more than 1,500 people died of heart disease. Those who worked out and consumed more calories cut their risk of heart disease death in half.

    Exercise Is Essential

    "Subjects with the lowest caloric intake, least physical activity, and who were overweight or obese had significantly higher cardiovascular mortality rates than those with high caloric intake, most physical activity, and normal weight," Dr. Fang notes. The individuals in the study who were overweight and didn't exercise had a bigger risk of heart disease even if they tried (and succeeded) at eating less.

    "This suggests that heart disease outcome was not determined by a single factor, but rather by a compound of behavioral, socioeconomic, genetic and clinical characteristics," according to Dr. Fang.

    According to researchers, if your job requires a great deal of physical activity, your health will be better if you get another job. Exercise on the job not only doesn't decrease your risk of heart disease, it may actually raise it. The reason: On-the-job activity is linked to heart-endangering increases in job stress.

    Research into this subject, performed at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, found that while recreational exercise slowed hardening of the arteries, workers who had to exert themselves during the workday had arteries that were blocked at a younger age (American Journal of Medicine 7/03).

    In this study, researchers examined about 500 middle-aged employees as part of what is called the Los Angeles Atherosclerosis Study.

    "We found that atherosclerosis progressed significantly faster in people with greater stress, and people who were under more stress also were the ones who exercised more in their jobs," says James Dwyer, PhD, professor of preventive medicine at the Keck School. According to Dr. Dwyer, "This suggests that the apparent harmful effect of physical activity at work on atherosclerosis-and heart disease risk-may be due to the tendency of high-activity jobs to be more stressful in modern workplaces.

    "It appears from our findings that the psychological stresses associated with physically active jobs overcomes any biological benefit of the activity itself."

    Playful Workouts

    On the other hand, the scientists found that heart disease drops dramatically among those who exercise the most in their spare time. In the study, people who vigorously worked out at least three times a week had the lowest risk. But even those who just took walks enjoyed better heart health than people whose most strenuous activity was working the TV remote. Dr. Dwyer says, "These results are important because they demonstrate the very substantial and almost immediate-within one or two years-cardiovascular benefit of greater physical activity."

    Lowering your risk of heart disease is substantially up to you. Listen to what your heart tells you it needs; then, exercise your right to fetch some cardiovascular necessities.



    --
    Vitanet ®

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    Breathe Easy - Don't underestimate the danger of asthma.
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    Date: June 12, 2005 05:57 PM
    Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
    Subject: Breathe Easy - Don't underestimate the danger of asthma.

    Breathe Easy by Edward Bullard, III Energy Times, March 1, 1998

    Don't underestimate the danger of asthma. When an asthmatic attack chokes the passageways to your lungs, cutting off your air supply, the consequences can prove frightening and disastrous.

    Although asthma is the leading chronic illness among children, most sufferers are adults. The condition ranks as the 7th most common chronic affliction nationwide affecting 14 to 20 million people; about 11 million of these are over the age of 18.

    The American Lung Association estimates that between 1982 and 1992 the total number of asthma cases jumped by more than 57%. Researchers can't pinpoint the reasons for this rise, but they have found that urban dwellers suffer a higher asthma risk.

    Despite the gloomy statistics, those who suffer asthma can take reassurance from the progressive development of complementary and conventional treatments that control this condition. Anyone who suffers asthma should consult with a knowledgeable health practitioner.

    How does asthma start? This airway problem may originate with allergies and sinus or bronchial infections (the bronchi are the tubes leading to the lungs). Some experts believe that air pollution, dust mites, cockroach remains and other environmental toxins may exacerbate the condition.

    A family history of allergies and asthma also increases your asthmatic vulnerability since your genes may make you more prone to the airway inflammation that leads to breathing constraints.

    Allergic reactions to food have been implicated in causing restricted breathing. Food found to most frequently instigate immediate lung difficulties include nuts, peanuts (which are, technically, legumes not nuts), eggs, shellfish and fish. Foods that do not cause immediate wheezing but may produce a delayed respiratory effect include artificial food colorings, wheat, citrus fruits, milk, chocolate and wheat products.

    Since an allergic reaction to particular foods can apparently play a role in asthma, some people find relief by systematically eliminating foods from their diets, identifying troublesome items and then permanently avoiding those foods.

    Asthma's Nutrition Gap

    According to Richard N. Firshein, D.O., director of the Firshein Center for Comprehensive Medicine in New York City, asthma stems from cells' "disordered metabolism." In these circumstances, the body's immune system often mistakes allergens (normally benign substances) for infectious agents. In strenuously defending itself against allergens, the body goes on "red alert," says Dr. Firshein in his book Reversing Asthma (Warner), "exhausting itself in the process." This creates a need for extra vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Too often, he believes, this nutritional need is not met and asthma ensues.

    In the presence of asthma, magnesium can help restore free breathing. Dr. Firshein reports that about 50 years ago, medical researchers discovered that treating asthma victims with magnesium sulfate opened up breathing passageways. Although magnesium by itself does not completely alleviate asthma attacks, many Emergency room doctors still use it in conjunction with other treatments to restore breathing.

    In explaining magnesium's usefulness in alleviating asthma, Dr. Firshein notes that magnesium competes with calcium in each cell to influence asthmatic reactions. For instance, calcium stimulates mast cells (reactive immune cells) to release histamine, a chemical that foments allergic reactions that hinder breathing. Conversely, magnesium "stabilizes" mast cells, quieting their activity so that they retain their histamine instead of flooding breathing passages.

    In addition, calcium takes part in muscle contractions that can constrict breathing tube muscles. Magnesium can help relax those same muscles.

    Although intravenous treatment with magnesium for acute asthma attacks must be carried out by a trained health professional, taking magnesium supplements over a period of time, may gradually help assuage asthma's wheezes.

    How do you tell if you're short of magnesium? Standard blood tests of magnesium levels may be inadequate. As Dr. Firshein points out, normal blood tests only examine the amount of magnesium floating in the blood's plasma. That level can apparently appear sufficient even if red blood cells are magnesium-deficient. (Dr. Firshein recommends asking your health practitioner for a special red blood cell test.)

    Ephedra for Asthma

    Ever since about 3,000 BC, Chinese health practitioners have been giving the herb ma huang (Ephedra sinica) to asthma sufferers. In the 1920s, western medical researchers extracted a chemical called ephedrine from ma huang and soon synthesized this substance for use as a pharmaceutical. However, herbal experts believe that there are other beneficial substances in ma huang besides ephedrine that can ease breathing.

    Although ephedra has been used successfully to ward off the allergies of hayfever as well as mild asthma, when this herb is taken over a long period its benefits may lessen. The reason: eventually the herb's ephedrine weakens the adrenal glands, according to Michael Murray, ND, and Joseph Pizzorno, ND, in the Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine (Prima). To offset this effect, they recommend supporting the use of ephedra with licorice (Glycerrhiza glabra) as well as ginseng (Panax ginseng) which support the adrenals. In addition, vitamins C and B6 and zinc and magnesium plus pantothenic acid also boost adrenal function.

    Licking Asthma with Licorice

    Since much of asthma's deleterious effects on health stem from the fact it inflames breathing passageways, licorice root, which acts to squelch inflammation and which calms allergies, can be helpful in restoring normal breathing. Licorice, according to Drs. Murray and Pizzorno, promulgates the persistence of cortisol in our body, a hormone that acts as an anti-inflammatory agent.

    As an extra benefit, licorice can also forestall the side effects of cortisone, one of the most widely prescribed medicines for asthma. Licorice also boosts cortisone's desirable anti-inflammatory action while inhibiting the action of enzymes that would otherwise increase unwanted inflammation.

    Onions + Garlic = Better Breath

    Despite their reputation for giving you bad breath, both onion and garlic can improve the breath of those afflicted with asthma. The reason: both of these plants restrict the action of an enzyme with the tongue twisting name of lipoxygenase, a chemical that helps produce inflammation.

    Studies with animals showed that when they were fed onion extract, their induced asthmatic problems decreased. Part of onion's benefit may be due to its quercetin content. (Quercetin is a bioflavonoid available as a supplement.) Onion also contains mustard oils, which are believed to slow the body's production of leukotrienes (substances that also increase inflammation).

    Vitamin C

    Vitamin C, the most abundant antioxidant nutrient in the lungs' inner lining, apparently protects against respiratory problems. Studies of people with asthma show that they possess less vitamin C both in their circulating blood and in white blood cells. When researchers induced bronchial constriction in people who volunteered for respiratory studies, they found that those given vitamin C didn't have as hard a time breathing. Experts recommend healthy doses of vitamin C plus other antioxidant nutrients such as vitamin E, carotenoids and selenium to lower the risk of allergic reactions and ease breathing. Antioxidant nutrients restrict the action of free radicals, molecules that attack the lungs and other parts of the cardiovascular system.

    Chinese skullcap (Scutellaria baicalensis) also effectively fights inflammation without causing serious side effects. Experts believe its bioflavonoids stop the body from making biochemicals that inflame tissues. Aside from restricting inflammation, these bioflavonoids also act as antioxidants.



    --
    Vitanet ®

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    Immunity - The Big Picture
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    Date: June 10, 2005 09:51 PM
    Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
    Subject: Immunity - The Big Picture

    Immunity: The Big Picture by Brian Amherst Energy Times, August 3, 1999

    Your body wants to be well. Outfitted with a battalion of defenses for strategic deployment, your immune system explodes with resistant force at the first sign of infective invasion.

    Think of the time a tiny splinter embedded itself in your thumb. By bedtime, the spot rose and reddened; by morning, white blood cells had launched their campaign, building a hot, throbbing fortification. By day's end, the bit of wood was propelled to the surface and ejected by the immune system warriors. Once again, a foreign assailant was summarily ousted.

    The Protective Force
    The immune system is a dazzlingly complex mechanism charged with guarding against infection, colds, flu and cancer. Laced with networks of couriers and transmitters, backed up by intricate fail safe devices and reinforced by memory units, immunity constantly adapts to highly specific and evolving needs.

    "Supporting the immune system is critical to good health. Conversely, good health is critical to supporting the immune system." So write naturopathic doctors Michael T. Murray and Joseph E. Pizzorno in their Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine (Prima).

    Maintaining the immune system requires a comprehensive program of wholesome diet, resilient attitude, fitness enhancing activity and nutrients keyed to the clear and specific needs of this energetic machine.

    The all-star lineup for immune sustenance: a high-potency multiple vitamin/mineral formula, vitamins C and A, bioflavonoids, isoflavones, zinc and selenium, antioxidants like ActiVin (grape seed extract) and pycnogenol (French maritime pine bark), as well as the botanicals echinacea and astragalus.

    But optimal partnering with your immune system also benefits from understanding its workings.

    The Battlefronts
    The immune system wages war on the organ, tissue and cellular fronts. It encompasses the lymphatic vessels and organs (lymph nodes, thymus, spleen and tonsils), white blood cells, specialized cells in particular tissues and customized chemicals.

    Lymph, a milky fluid consisting of water protein and immune cells, is the essence of the immune system. Powered by muscle movement (an important reason why exercise boosts immunity), the lymphatic system collects and transports lymph to the lymph nodes. These nodes contain certain immune cells and filter out invading antigens, as well as produce antibodies, before siphoning the lymph out into the bloodstream.

    If you've ever had "swollen glands," that means your lymph nodes have been in overdrive.

    Macrophages are the immune cells that filter lymph, consuming bacteria and cellular debris while protecting the lymph system from invasion and damage.

    Gland Tidings
    Two organs dominate immune function: n The thymus. The most influential, critical gland of the immune system, located just below the thyroid gland and above the heart; produces T lymphocytes, white blood cells responsible for cell-mediated immunity not controlled by antibodies. This immune response is tailored to specific antigens and is vital to resisting infection from mold-like bacteria including yeast, fungi, parasites and such viruses as Epstein-Barr, herpes simplex and hepatitis. It also protects against cancer, allergies and autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis. n The spleen. The largest mass (about seven ounces) of lymphatic tissue in the body, located in the upper left abdomen behind the lower ribs; it produces white blood cells, which engulf and destroy bacteria and cellular debris; recycles material from worn out red blood cells and platelets; produces immune system enhancing compounds, including the proteins tufsin and splenopentin, and spleen extracts.

    The White Blood Cell Album
    Although white blood cells (WBCs) are uniformly accountable for protecting the body against bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites, the different types of WBCs vary considerably in form and function. n Neutrophils phagocytize, that is, eat, viruses, bacteria and old or dead cells. They don't need any biochemical messengers for activation and their effectiveness is wide-ranging.

    In Monocytes collect cellular trash after infections and can trigger immune responses; eosinophils can eliminate foreign particles and, with basophils, are involved in immune response.

    In Lymphocytes include varieties of T cells, which work with other white blood cells or attack and destroy foreign tissue, cancer cells or virus-infected cells; B cells that produce antibodies that bind to bacteria, viruses or tumors; and natural killer cells (NKCs) that destroy cancerous or virally-infected cells.

    (Based on information in the Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine; The Road to Immunity: How to Survive and Thrive in a Toxic World (Pocket Books) by Kenneth Bock, MD, and Nellie Sabin; and the Johns Hopkins Family Health Book (Harper Resource).

    Keep the System Sound
    Your immunity mechanism calls for special care and support. The dilemma: How to develop a balanced system of complementary and alternative therapies to build and sustain powerhouse immunity? "There is no question that, in terms of immune system response, certain supplements can reduce infections, asthma, autoimmune disease and risk factors for cancer," says Samuel D. Benjamin, MD, former project director of the Arizona Center for Health and Medicine and an ardent advocate for complementary medicine.

    "But you must always be sure to maintain the mind-body-spirit link," he told Energy Times. "For the mind, it could be exercise, yoga or meditation. Evidence shows improved immune system responses from these therapies. And in any case, you never read in the headlines that somebody has been admitted to the Emergency room overdosing on meditation.

    "Intentionality also is an important part of the mind link: believing you are going to fare well. For your spirit, you must ask yourself such questions as, Do I feel connected to others?

    "For the body, a daily multivitamin and mineral supplement. Much depends on your community: I live on Long Island, where there is a high incidence of breast cancer, so I would recommend green tea and isoflavones from soy products for women."

    Dr. Benjamin stresses moderation in the use of immune-intensifying supplements, among which he cites mixed carotenoids, zinc and vitamin E.

    The Soy Solution
    Scientists who took the cue from the apparent link between high-soy Asian diets and low cancer incidence have developed a compelling case for soy as an immune-supportive anticancer agent.

    In a study conducted by the University of Southern California at Norris and published in the March 4, 1998 Journal of the National Cancer Institute, researchers reported that genistein, an active component of soy products, short-circuits the ability of tumor cells to elude destruction by the immune system due to an excess of defensive stress proteins.

    Genistein seems to make cancer cells vulnerable to the immune response. Researchers at Wake Forest University told participants at the January 1999 meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science that dietary or supplemental soy fed to monkeys counteracted cell proliferation that is a cancer precursor.

    That Championship C
    Probably the most widely recognized immune accelerator is vitamin C, an honored warrior against scurvy and, in 1970, again celebrated by Linus Pauling for its preventive powers over the common cold.

    Immune cells are known to accumulate and retain high levels of vitamin C. Researchers at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York now understand how that happens: Proteins called growth factors (which control growth and production of immune cells) also increase those cells' ability to take up vitamin C.

    These researchers, reporting in the April 1998 issue of the journal Blood, explain that the additional glucose that the growth factors pump into immune cells (for enhanced energy), plus extra vitamin C, intensify immune response.

    And folks with higher levels of vitamin C in their blood serum experience less cell damage from free radicals that leads to cancer, heart and pulmonary disease and other chronic conditions.

    Scientists at the University of Buffalo (addressing the June 13, 1997 meeting of the Society for Epidemiologic Research) deduced from studying population groups that high levels of vitamin C are associated with low oxidative stress and lower risk of cell damage.

    From A to Zinc
    In Kids with neuroblastoma, a malignant tumor of embryonic nerve cells and the third most common form of childhood cancer, experienced significantly improved survival rates when their therapy included high doses of retinoic acid, a derivative of vitamin A, according to researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, and Childrens Hospital Los Angeles, who reported to the American Society for Clinical Oncology on May 18, 1998.

    In Colostrum, the pre-milk liquid produced by mammals during the first 24 to 48 hours after birth, took the spotlight recently as a supplement imbued with multiple immune factors and natural antibiotics that augment body's immune response. A 1992 study showed that bovine colostrum might be able to reduce and prevente infections in immune deficient folks, especially those with AIDS.

    In University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute researchers found for the first time (on laboratory animals) that vitamin D appreciably inhibits widespread prostate cancer by binding to cancer cells and triggering cell death or their transformation to benign cells.

    In Vitamin E exerts formidable immune-enhancing influence on both antibody and cell-mediated immunity. One fundamental study in the Journal of the American Medical Association (245, 1981: 53-58) established conclusively that vitamin E deficiency results in significant impairment of immune function. Later studies demonstrated that it reduces prostate cancer by up to one-third.

    In Coenzyme A, described as a metabolic enzyme, takes part in starting numerous body processes that provide energy for the immune system. If you ever run short of this enzyme, fat processing within your body would grind to a halt.

    in Researchers looking at a substance with the tongue twisting name 3-acetyl-7-oxo-Dehydroepiandro-sterone, believe it aids immunity by quelling stress hormones.

    in Mushrooms contain natural substances called polysaccharides, believed to enhance immunity. In particular, maitake mushroom, which conveys the immune booster beta-D-glucans, is reputed to help fight infections and drop blood pressure.

    in Men and women taking selenium supplements for 10 years had 41% less total cancer than those taking a dummy, according to a January 1997 study by Cornell University and the University of Arizona. Other studies have shown it to reduce the risk for colon cancer by about 60%. n Zinc may provide immediate protection against the all too common cold. Scientists at the University of Florida were the first to apply genetic fingerprinting methods like those used in criminal and paternity investigations to understand how nutrients directly affect human immune cells.

    The study, in the April 1998 Journal of Nutrition, demonstrates that zinc signals cells to make the protein metallothionein, which protects against infections, toxins and other stressors.

    Phytochemicals a la Carte
    Researchers extol the powers of phytochemicals in fruits and vegetables available in dietary or supplement form as immune-igniting antioxidants. These compounds neutralize free radicals that oxidize cellular membranes, rendering them vulnerable to cancer.The Strang Cancer Prevention Center, an affiliate of New York Presbyterian Hospital, offers a menu of the top antioxidant phytochemicals. The center's director, Mitchell L. Gaynor, MD, is coauthor (with Jerry Hickey, RPh) of Dr. Gaynor's Cancer Prevention Program (Kensington): n Carotenoids, including beta-carotene from veggies and lycopene (the substance that lends the tomato is ruddy complexion), fight free radicals.

    n Isoflavones from soy, fight angiogenesis, the process by which new blood vessels form to supply nutrients to cancerous growths. n Sulforaphane in broccoli, kale and cabbage activates anticancer enzymes.

    n Omega-3 fatty acids in cold water fish block the synthesis of prostaglandins, natural compounds in the body that promote tumor growth.

    n Ginger contains antioxidant compounds, each more potent than vitamin E. Recent studies on mice show ginger can prevent skin tumors. n Rosemary contains carnosol which deactivates carcinogens and helps limit the effects of prostaglandins.

    Sometimes the world can look like a dangerous place, especially when you're sick and tired much of the time. But in the search for immunity, menus of health help like this ensure that no matter what your immunity needs, a boost can be yours with the proper nutrient selection.



    --
    Vitanet ®

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    Allergy Alleviation
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    Date: June 10, 2005 05:32 PM
    Author: Darrell Miller (dm@vitanetonline.com)
    Subject: Allergy Alleviation

    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 [1989]: 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, [1990] 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.



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