Search Term: " Lupus "
Gotu Kola is one of the most useful plant remedies found inAyurvedic medicine
December 08, 2018 11:16 AM
Plant remedies around world are getting more and more attention. People are realizing that there is a very high use case for these things and it is being accepted around the world. Gotu Kola is a planet remedy that is common due to its usefulness for various different things that are found in people. At the end of the day, not all plant remedies will work for everyone. However, if you find one that does work for you, it can work wonders.
"Psychoactive substances target the brain and nervous system, resulting to an altered mental state. This psychoactive property is the reason why Gotu Kola is traditionally used for enhancing memory, longevity and cognition. In addition to these, Gotu Kola has also been used to treat skin conditions, including leprosy, lupus, varicose ulcers, eczema, psoriasis."
Read more: https://www.naturalnews.com/2018-11-22-gotu-kola-in-ayurvedic-medicine.html
Ladies: 15 Early Warning Signs Of Lupus You Shouldnâ??t Ignore
March 30, 2018 05:18 PM
When it comes to maintaining a happy and healthy lifestyle, one of the foremost and crucial things that anybody can do to ensure they remain healthy is looking out for warning signs of potentially oncoming diseases, in order to tackle them early. For women, lupus has become an increasing problem, however, recent studies and insight has found that there are various warning signs that your body will give you prior to the development of the ailment.
"It’s a potentially life-threatening autoimmune disorder that can strike anyone, at any age, in entirely unpredictable ways."
Read more: https://www.thealternativedaily.com/15-early-warning-signs-of-lupus-you-shouldnt-ignore/
Chest pain? It might be one of these 7 things
March 03, 2017 12:59 PM
If you are having chest pains, then it might be one of seven things. Heartburn is one of these things. Muscle strain is another one. It is possible that a person might mistake a muscle strain for something far more serious, like a heart attack. Doctors do not expect any patients to tell the difference between the two.
"If you're having chest pain, and you're not 100% sure what's causing it, either call your doctor or call 911."
10 health concerns you can detect through your eyes
November 26, 2016 06:59 AM
While I was driving the car in the city where traffic was bad, I found the brake override warning lamp illuminated on the combination meter sometimes. And then, when I accelerated the car while the light was illuminated, unexpectedly the engine did not have power.
"When you meet someone new, the first thing you notice about them is probably their eyes—the shape, the color and sometimes their health"
A Sulfur Supplement Is Necessary For A Healthy Body
May 17, 2014 01:25 AM
Benefits of sulfur
The human body obliges sulfur for bones, joints and an assortment of capacities. Sulfur is needed for ordinary day-by-day capacities and in bigger amounts when the body's frameworks are focused on, repairing harm or battling a malady. A sulfur supplement is required that can likewise offer a large number of numerous wellbeing upgrading profits for fighting an extensive variety of wellbeing issues, expanding imperviousness to sicknesses, and making wellbeing and prosperity. It is additionally required for detoxification of the body in uprooting poisons and mechanical chemicals that the body regularly assimilates once a day.
An approach to fulfill these needs is with a day-by-day admission of MSM (Methyl Sulfonyl Methane). MSM is the main bio available manifestation of sulfur, a macro mineral that is utilized within critical sums in the body. An uncommon dietary supplement is likely the most noteworthy finding since Vitamin C, and is presently the most prominent supplement in nourishment. It is intended to help joint conditions, for example, osteoarthritis, sprains, tendinitis, bursitis and games related wounds. It is non-poisonous, non-allergenic and does not meddle with different sorts of pharmaceuticals and supplements, and offers a long arrangement of wellbeing profits for the body.
Where to find sulfur?
Sulfur is fundamental in the ordinary consistently working of the human body. It has been utilized for many years to cure skin sicknesses, joint and bone conditions and numerous different afflictions. In spite of the fact that sulfur is gotten from nourishment sources and the human body does not handle it, in instances of great insufficiency it could be acquired by dietary supplements. Sulfur makes up pretty nearly 0.25% of body weight and is a vital some piece of all living cells. It is key in the counteractive action of numerous issues and must essentially be acquired from sustenance or wellbeing supplements.
Sulfur could be found in numerous skin balms, bar soaps, salves and creams. It is been demonstrated to be valuable in the medicine of pimple inflammation. It is utilized as an element within the medication for other skin related issue, for example, scabies, warts, and likewise for dandruff because of the antifungal, antibacterial properties of sulfur. Results of sulfur have been utilized to upgrade the procedure of wound recuperating, which was its motivation in the Trojan wars.
What are the benefits of MSM
MSM is the wealthiest wellspring of natural sulfur accessible and is essential in the creation and recovery of tissue. It is found in and utilized by every cell as a part of the body. It expands vitality, readiness, mental placidness and improves the capacity to focus. It remembers the manifestations of joint pain, carpal tunnel, tendonitis, bursitis and unending weakness. Sulfur has an alternate, positive impact on all the frameworks in the human body. MSM causes quick detoxification of the body's tissues by making the cell dividers more porous, making it simpler for the body to ingest supplements and to dispose of poisons by flushing them out of the body. Hormones, compounds, antibodies and cell reinforcements rely on upon MSM for their day-by-day capacities.
MSM is a non-medicine supplement that can help with joint issues running from a slight solidness to extreme torment. Its general profits helps with wellbeing issues, for example, joint inflammation, unfavorable susceptibilities, gastrointestinal, PMS, skin break out, lung issues, muscle torment, parasite, a few diseases, heart smolder and blockage, to name a couple. It is an exceptional dietary supplement that could be utilized for a mixture of requisitions, for example, hostile to aggravation, body corrosive decrease, expanding flow, sound connective tissues, Lupus, breast and colon diseases, diabetes, eye wellbeing, anxiety and mental issue.
Studies have indicated that MSM Capsules help joint adaptability, decrease firmness and swelling, and diminish torment connected with maturing and damage. They have been utilized to help with ceaseless agony, joint inflammation, joint irritation, rheumatoid joint pain, osteoporosis, bursitis, tendonitis, musculoskeletal ache, muscle issues and then some. These containers can make the skin look more youthful and increment vitality levels. MSM is copious in nature, yet the wealthiest characteristic sources just give it at levels of a few parts for every million. Nourishment sources are prepared which exhausts characteristic sulfur, making a MSM supplement vital, and these containers have not demonstrated any negative reactions.
The Health Benefits of Flaxseed Oil.
March 14, 2014 11:00 PM
What is flaxseed
Flaxseed and also flaxseed oil incorporate alpha-linolenic chemical p (ALA), a precursor to the primary omega-3 oily acid that to a certain degree and inefficiently turns in to DHA and EPA -- extra active omega-3s -- methods. While flaxseed hasn't yet been proven to improve heart disease risk, there's very good evidence that flaxseed and also flaxseed oil may reduced cholesterol degrees.
Benefits of flaxseed
Flaxseed oil may also be helpful with menopausal signs. Research has proven in which 40 grams daily may be a lot like hormone treatment for improving mild menopause signs, such as sizzling whizzes and nights sweats. Ground flaxseed may also ease constipation.
Flaxseed has additionally been shown to improve kidney function in people with Lupus. If you have Lupus or any other medical condition it’s crucial to talk together with your doctor about almost any supplements you receive.
Flaxseed oil, including sea food oil, has been studied for reducing triglycerides. Nevertheless, it is vital to ingest much flaxseed oil (38-60 grams) to have any noticeable consequences.
Flaxseed is being studied for several other conditions, between cancers to diabetes to assist osteoporosis. At this factor, there is too few evidence to assistance flaxseed for most of these conditions
Flaxseed oil in addition has become found to get beneficial if you happen to suffer from Crohn’s Disease and Colitis. Several studies have found it oil seems to be able to calm the inner lining to the inflamed intestines. Another benefit exists even as have an excessive written content of mucilage in flax this too is an efficient natural laxative.
Flaxseed oil is beneficial in helping to relieve high cholesterol. It’s important to make note of however, that this alone can't be totally effective throughout conserving cholesterol degrees, an overhaul linked to overall diet should work jointly along with flaxseed oil.
The probability of heart illness will be leaner in people that take flaxseed petrol. Evidence indicates that those who eat lots associated using ALA are less in danger of suffer a critical heart attack and yes it reduces high leading to help tinnitus pressure.
Some men and women endure Sjogren’s syndrome, which is dryness with your sight. Flaxseed oil really helps to improve this concern.
Essential Oils Is Flax Seed
January 30, 2014 05:58 PM
Flax Seed as an Essential Oil
A rich source of recuperating mixes, flax seed has been grown for more than 7000 years. Initially grown in Europe, the plant's tan seeds were customarily used to plan salves for aggravated skin and mending slurries for stoppage. Rich in essential oils, or Efas, flax seed oil is utilized to anticipate and treat coronary illness and to assuage a mixture of incendiary issue and hormone-related issues, incorporating fruitlessness.
Flax Seed History
A source of filament for cloth fabric since aged times, the slim flax plant likewise brags a long history as a mending herb. Initially grown in Europe, the plant's tan seeds were customarily used to plan salves for aroused skin and mending slurries for clogging. Today, flax seeds (additionally called linseeds) are best known for the helpful oil that is inferred by pressing them. Rich in essential greasy acids, or Efas, flax seed oil has earned a robust notoriety for treating a reach of afflictions, from coronary illness to Lupus.
Benefits of Flax Seed Oil
The essential oils and greasy acids in flaxseed oil are one of its key mending parts. Efas are especially profitable in light of the fact that the form needs them to capacity fittingly, yet can't produce them on its own. Essential greasy acids work all around the form to secure cell layers, keeping them effective at conceding solid substances while excepting harming ones.
One of the Efas in flax seed oil, alpha-linolenic harsh corrosive, is reputed to be an omega-3 greasy harsh corrosive. Like the omega-3s found in fish, it seems to diminish the danger of coronary illness and various different illnesses.
Flax Seed Oil is an Amazing Source of Omega 3:
Just 1 teaspoon holds around the range of 2.5 grams, identical to more than double the sum most individuals get past their eating methodologies. Flax seeds additionally hold omega-6 fattening acids as linoleic harsh corrosive; omega-6s are the same solid fats found in vegetable oils.
Flax seed oil just holds these alpha-linolenic harsh corrosive (Omega 3 oils), and not the strand or lignan segments. Along these lines, flax seed oil gives the Omega 3 profits, for example, lipid-bringing down lands, not the purgative or against growth lands.
Entire flax seeds (not the concentrated oil) are a rich source of lignans (phytoestrogens), substances that seem to emphatically influence hormone-related issues. Lignans might likewise be functional in anticipating certain growths and battling particular microscopic organisms, parasites, and infections, incorporating those that cause mouth blisters and shingles.
Cetyl Myristoleate to Encourage Healthy Cells
October 29, 2013 10:01 PM
Which is a plant and animal oil derived natural fatty acid, has been found to have a good effect on joint inflammation. To be very accurate, the natural compound can be very effective for controlling complications of arthritis. However, researchers are still trying to examine the compound in order to unfold many other beneficial aspects.
Source of Cetyl Myristoleate
This compound can be found in both vegetable and animal sources. People who only prefer to have vegetarian sources can get this compound from nuts. If a person does not mind to have the compound from an animal source, he/she can get it from the oil of the sperm whale and beef tallow.
Cetyl Myristoleate Benefits
· Among many other benefits, the effect of this compound on the joint problem has got maximum exposure.
· This fatty acid is equally effective for managing autoimmune diseases like Lupus, psoriasis, fibromyalgia and gout. When the immune cells start to attack other healthy cells of the body, it causes autoimmune diseases.
· Cetyl Myristoleate also gives power to the healthy cells that altogether build an immune system strong enough to fight the foreign invaders.
Arthritis is a common problem in adults. Cetyl Myristoleate can make a huge difference in the condition by lubricating the joints suffering from inflammation. It is an excellent mean to encourage the healthy cells of the body. By having a prescribed dosage of this nutrient, one can improve the skin texture, the condition of heart, arteries and nerve.
Cetyl Myristoleate is an excellent mean to safeguard against the autoimmune diseases. People can make a great use of this fatty acid to get a relief from the acute joint inflammation problem and reduce the pain. As the effect of this element is still under observation, to be able to use the element extensively, people might have to wait a bit longer.
July 16, 2012 08:39 AM
Caring for your hair can be quite tricky sometimes, especially if you happen to own a little longer strands than average. The joy of keeping hair is seeing it shinny, silky, strong, consistent and admirable luster that it comes with. However, archiving these properties is next to impossible if there happen to be one to two hair disorders or diseases interacting with your hair.
The commonest and perhaps most frustrating of the hair disorders is hair loss, whichever the cause, the results are nowhere near to pleasing. Other disorders and diseases that make our hair loss its admirable beauty and luster include; trichodystrophy, alopecia areata, Telogen effluvium, Androgenetic alopecia, Infectious folliculitis, Lichen planus, Lupus erythematosus, Ringworms just to name but a few.
You must have noted that a lot of hair shampoos, conditioners and “hair food” gels use a lot of herbal additives nowadays for improvinng hair health. Use of herbs is a natural way that can restore dry damaged or diseased hair and stimulate faster growth of stronger hair strands. You may apply hair herbal solutions directly to your hair and scalp or you may consume them for shiny and healthy hair depending on the formulation. Herbs can also go as far as treating dandruff, hair loss and restoring your luscious locks.
Are hair herbal products safe?
Herbs are a natural and safe way of treating and restoring hair health unlike their synthetic counterparts, this does not however mean that they are completely safe for everyone. Some people may have allergic reactions from use of some herbs so if you suspect any possibility of an allergic reaction you may want to perform a little test before using the herbs. You can apply a small amount on your wrist and check after two days to see if there is any reaction before proceeding to use the particular herb. Be sure to consult with your physician especially if you are pregnant.
Common herbs used to restore hair health
Rosemary: according to experts, rosemary helps fight dandruff, stimulate rapid and strong hair growth, and bring back luster to your hair. To get the above benefits from this herb, you can add rosemary in foods, or formulate rosemary water through socking the foliage in a cub of warm water for some times. You can then use the resulting water to rinse your hair.
Horsetail: this herb is an excellent source of silica. Silica is good at strengthening the hair from its core while restoring the shine. Horsetail herb can be used through deriving a shampoo from its foliage. Add 2-3 table spoons of crashed horsetail leaves into ½ cup of hot water. The mixture is the added to baby shampoo. Use this to shampoo your hair regularly.
Aloe Vera: aloe Vera gel extract is known for its numerous medicinal properties such calming irritated skin in addition to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. When the gel is massaged into the scalp, it has the ability to restore the hair's PH balance while sealing in the hair moisture content and consequently acting as a perfect natural conditioner. Additionally, aloe Vera also stimulates hair growth and therefore used for Alopecia treatment.
Ginkgo Biloba: this is a well known herbal remedy for quite a number of health issues including improving blood circulation to the skin and brain. Due to this medicinal property, Ginkgo Biloba helps in delivering of extra nutrients to the hair follicles and promotes hair growth. It's therefore recommended by most health practitioners for hair loss treatment. Stinging nettle-this herb stops conversion of testosterone to DHT which is the major contributor of hair lose in men. Stinging nettle extracts and powders are available commercially and are most effective when used together with pygeum or palmetto. You can also make green tea from the dried and ground powder of its leaves.
Other similarly useful herbs for restoring your health include marigold, licorice, chamomile, parsley, birch and burdock.
Support Good Stomach Health and More With DGL Licorice
August 14, 2010 10:48 AM
What is DGL Licorice
We all know what licorice is - the root of the licorice plant, or Glycyrrhiza glabra - but what is DGL licorice? In fact it is licorice with a substance known as glycyrrhizin removed. This substance is dangerous to your health because it can cause hypertension and also reduce potassium levels. By removing this, those suffering high blood pressure can also take advantage of its health benefits. So what are these benefits?
They are not wide-ranging, but they are very important to you if you suffer any of a range of gastric problems, such as ulcers and gastritis. It can also be used to treat irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), leaky gut syndrome, and Crohn's disease, and can also be used in autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and Lupus. If you suffer any of these conditions it worth trying DGL licorice, but let your physician know what you are doing. DGL Licorice is available in chewable form to enhance the benefits to the stomach. Enzymatic Therapy DGL Licorice is Glycyrrhizin free so you can rest assured that this product is 100% beneficial with zero side effects. Give DGL a try today!
Give DGL Licorice a try and see how it can help you!
DHEA and Your Health
March 16, 2010 12:27 PM
DHEA is a naturally occurring hormone that is produced within the adrenal glands. The most abundant hormone found in the body, it is sometimes referred to as the “mother hormone.” When hormone levels are too low or out of sync, the body is unable to function as intended. DHEA levels reach their peak in the body around age twenty-one. After that, the levels tend to decline over the years. This substance is a precursor hormone that can be metabolized into other adrenal hormones and act with other hormones.
When DHEA levels are normal, it aids the immune system in maintaining balance and fighting diseases and infection. This, in turn, protects the body form a variety of serious problems that can occur, including cancer. Although the full extent of DHEA's benefits is not entirely known, there is a great deal of evidence that links low levels of DHEA to conditions such as cancer, Alzheimer's disease, arthritis, osteoporosis, chronic fatigue syndrome, diabetes, fertility problems, Lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, allergies, PMS, and even weight problems. Many people even believe that this hormone is the single most important factor in maintaining health.
Scientific studies have determined that individuals with cancer seem to have lower levels of DHEA than those individuals who are healthy. It has been found that DHEA has the ability to inhibit one of the most important enzymes that is responsible for the feeding of cancer cells. Research has also concluded that DHEA can help in a variety of types of cancer, including colon, lung, skin, breast, lymphatic, gastric, prostate, and ovarian. It is believed that DHEA aids in slowing the growth of cancer. This hormone also blocks some of the enzymes that are responsible for cancer proliferation, which helps to prevent the activity of cancer and stops damage from occurring.
Alzheimer's condition is extremely frightening, as it deals with the loss of memory and senility. It has been found that levels of DHEA in Alzheimer's patients are forty-eight percent lower than the normal, healthy level established by the control group. DHEA is responsible for protecting the brain cells from damage and deterioration. Also, it is useful with other degenerative conditions that deal with senility. In healthy individuals, DHEA can be found abundantly in brain tissue, which protects against aging and damage.
DHEA is a precursor for cortisol and adrenaline, both of which are stress hormones. DHEA can become depleted when the body is under stress due to the effect on the adrenal glands. Because of this, chronic stress can lead to lower levels of DHEA, which can be detrimental to one's health. It has been found the prolonged stress can lead to cases of depression, with depression being helped by the addition of DHEA. Individuals with depression have found favorable results when using DHEA.
It has been shown that DHEA therapy is free of side effects when taken in proper amounts. Some problems that occur when excess amounts of DHEA are supplemented include acne, rapid heartbeat, irritability, and headaches. The majority of people solve these problems by lowering the amount they are taking. For more information on the many beneficial effects provided by DHEA, please feel free to contact a representative from your local or internet health food store.
Dhea is a hormone naturally found in the body now available over the counter at your local health food store.
Pine Bark Extract
October 07, 2009 11:25 AM
Many Native American tribes relied on the bark of pine trees for its ability to treat a number of disorders. The Annedda pine was called the “tree of life” due to its marvelous healing benefits. Jacques Cartier, a noted explorer in 1535, wrote in his diaries about the early medicinal uses for pine tree bark. Cartier and his crew came down with scurvy after being caught in the bitter snows of Quebec and living on hard biscuits and cured meat. Multiple men died before Quebec Indians approached them and made a tea from the bark of a pine tree. After drinking the tea and applying poultices to their wounds, they were soon healed. The miraculous recovery is actually a result of the vitamin C and bioflavonoids in the bark. A French professor discovered Cartier’s account and became intrigued with studying pine tree bark. He isolated a certain kind of proanthocyanidin flavonoids from the extract and later found it to have antioxidant attributes.
Pine bark extract has become an important herbal remedy due to its antioxidant power. It is responsible for binding with collagen fibers and helping to restore elasticity in the skin. It also protects the body from free-radical damage, which prevents excess and premature wrinkles. Pine tree bark also protects capillaries from free-radical damage that can cause phlebitis, varicose veins, and bruising. Those people who are suffering from skin conditions like psoriasis can also be benefited from pine bark extract. Along with being an antioxidant, pine bark is a natural anti-inflammatory. It helps heal joint pain that is associated with things such as arthritis and sports injuries. This herb helps to control and prevent edema and bursitis. Pine bark extract also helps with eyesight. It is responsible for reducing the risk of and treating diabetic retinopathy. Multiple studies have concluded that it is beneficial in improving night vision. One study even found marked improvement in visual performance in the proanthocyanidin group over a placebo group.
Additionally, pine bark extract may also help in inhibiting cellular mutations like tumors. Reports have found that this herb can help to prevent cellular deterioration in breast tumors and cardiovascular disease. There is also evidence that this herb possesses antiulcer properties that may help prevent the formation of undesirable chemicals in the stomach.
Pine bark can also benefit other conditions with its proanthocyanidin therapy. Among these are autoimmune disorders such as Lupus, neural problems such as Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis, and vascular problems like heart disease, atherosclerosis, and stokes. Pine bark extract can also treat common complaints such as insomnia, flu, and even the common cold. This herb is very helpful in improving memory, longevity, and the prostate.
Additionally, its stimulant properties are responsible for decreasing the production of histamines in allergic reactions like hay fever. In order to obtain the best results when supplementing with this, or any herb, it is important to consult your health care provider before beginning any regimen. For more information on the many beneficial effects provided by pine bark extract, please feel free to consult a representative from your local health food store with questions.
June 05, 2009 10:13 AM
Black walnut is a species of flowering tree in the hickory family. This plant grows mostly from southern Ontario, west to southeast South Dakota, south to Georgia, northern Florida, and southwest to central Texas. The black walnut is large tree that reaches heights of 30 to 40 feet. The bark is grey-black and deeply furrowed. The leaves are alternate are about 30-60 centimeters in length. The male flowers droop to about eight to ten centimeters long, while the female flowers are terminal and can be found in clusters of two to five. These flowers ripen during the autumn into a fruit that has a brownish-green, semi-fleshy hush, and brown nut. The whole fruit falls in October. Although native to the Midwest and east central United States, the black walnut tree was introduced into Europe in 1629. Black walnut is more resistant to frost than the English walnut, but it thrives best in the warmer regions of fertile, lowland soils with a high water table. The nuts are harvested by hand from wild trees, with about 65% of the annual wild harvest coming from the U.S. state of Missouri.
For centuries, black walnut has been used in Europe to treat skin ailments and constipation. Recent research has led to findings that support its use for skin problems like boils, eczema, herpes, and ringworm. Additionally, it has many benefits for the stomach that are well represented. Black walnut was used by Native Americans as a laxative. Additionally, black walnut was used as a remedy for diarrhea and dysentery during the Civil War.
Black walnut has also been used for syphilis, TB, varicose veins, chronic infections of the intestines, and urogenital problems. Black walnut is considered to be very useful for killing parasites, tapeworms, and ringworm by herbalists. This nutrient causes oxygenation of the blood, which kills parasites. This fact has been proven through recent research. The brown stain that is found in the green husk of the black walnut is known to contain organic iodine, which has both antiseptic and healing properties.
It has been determined by scientific research that black walnut contains astringent properties that are healing to the skin and mucous membranes of the body. Black walnut can be gargled to clean stains on the teeth as well.
The hulls and leaves of the black walnut plant are used to provide alterative, anthelmintic, antigalactagogue, antineoplastic, antiseptic, astringent, and vulnerary properties. The primary nutrients found in black walnut are calcium, chlorine, iron, magnesium, manganese, niacin, organic iodine, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, silicon, selenium, vitamin A, B1, B2, B6, B15, C, P, and bioflavonoids. Primarily, black walnut is extremely beneficial in treating athlete’s foot, Candidiasis, canker sores, cold sores, dandruff, fungus, gum disease, herpes, infection, malaria, parasites, rashes, ringworm, and tapeworm.
Additionally, this herb is also extremely helpful in dealing with abscesses, acne, asthma, body odor, boils, cancer, colitis, diarrhea, diphtheria, dysentery, eczema, eye diseases, fevers, hemorrhoids, liver disorders, Lupus, poison ivy, skin diseases, tonsillitis, primary tuberculosis, tumors, ulcers, varicose veins, and wounds. For more information on the many beneficial effects of black walnut, please contact a representative from your local health food store with questions. Black walnut is available in capsule and tablet forms at your local or internet health food store.
*Statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Black walnut is not intended to diagnose, treat and cure or prevent disease. Always consult with your professional health care provider before changing any medication or adding Vitamins to medications.
Fight Inflammation naturally
March 19, 2009 02:36 PM
Lupus is a chronic inflammatory disease that often affects many of the body’s organs. An autoimmune disease, it occurs when the immune mechanism forms antibodies that attack the body’s own tissues. The majority of experts believe that Lupus is caused by a virus that has yet to be identified. According to this theory, the immune system develops antibodies in response to the virus that proceed in attacking the body’s own organs and tissues. This causes inflammation of the skin, blood vessels, joints, and other tissues to result. Other possible contributing factors to the development of Lupus include heredity and estrogen and testosterone hormones.
This disease was named Lupus, which means wolf, due to the butterfly-shaped rash that many people get over their cheeks and nose, which gave them what many people considered to be a wolf-like appearance. However, the rashes may appear elsewhere on the body, including the chest, ears, hands, shoulders, and upper arms. At least 90 percent of those people who contract Lupus are women, with women of Asian background appearing to be at greater risk for developing Lupus than other women. Although Lupus may occur at any age, it usually develops between the ages of fifteen and thirty-five.
There are two different types of Lupus: systemic Lupus erythematosus (SLE) and discoid Lupus erythematosus (DLE). SLE is a systemic disease that affects many different parts of the body and severity ranging from mild to life-threatening. The first symptoms in many cases of SLE seem to resemble those of arthritis, with swelling and pain in the fingers and other joints. The disease can also appear suddenly, with acute fever and the characteristic red rash appearing across the cheeks. Additionally, there may be red, scaling lesions elsewhere on the body, with sores possibly forming in the mouth.
Other symptoms of SLE include abdominal and chest pains, blood in the urine, fatigue, hair loss, loss of appetite, low-grade fever, nausea, poor circulation in the fingers and toes, shortness of breath, ulcers, vomiting, and weight loss. Many times, the lungs and kidneys are also involved, as about 50 percent of those with SLE develop nephritis, which is inflammation of the kidneys. The brain, lungs, spleen, and heart may also be affected in serious cases. Additionally, SLE can cause excessive bleeding and an increased susceptibility to infection. Amnesia, deep depression, headaches, mania, paralysis, paranoia, psychosis, seizures, and stroke may also be present if the central nervous system is involved.
DLE is a less serious disease, which primarily affects the skin. The butterfly rash forms over the nose and cheeks, with other possible lesions elsewhere, primarily on the scalp and ears. These lesions, which are small, yellowish lumps, can recur or persist for years. When they disappear, they often leave scars or permanent bald patches on the scalp. Although DLE is not necessarily dangerous to overall health, it is a chronic and disfiguring skin disease.
Both types of Lupus follow a pattern of periodic flare-ups, with alternating periods of remission. These flare-ups can be caused by the sun’s ultraviolet rays, fatigue, pregnancy, childbirth, infection, some drugs, stress, unidentified viral infections, and chemicals.
In order for a diagnosis to be made, the following eight symptoms have to occur either separately or at the same time: abnormal cells in the urine; arthritis; butterfly rash on the cheeks; low white blood cell count, low platelet count, or hemolytic anemia; mouth sores; seizures of psychosis; sun sensitivity; and the presence of blood of a specific antibody that is found in 50 percent of people with Lupus.
The following nutrients are considered to be extremely important in dealing with Lupus: calcium, magnesium, l-cysteine, proteolytic enzymes (Serrapeptase and nattokinase), essential fatty acids, glucosamine sulfate, garlic, raw thymus glandular, vitamin C with bioflavonoids, zinc, acidophilus, kelp, a multivitamin and mineral complex, pycnogenol, vitamin A, vitamin E, alfalfa, goldenseal, burdock root, feverfew, pau d’arco, red clover, licorice root, milk thistle, and yucca.
Natural alternatives can help support the body in the fight against Lupus, but one should always consult a physician before taking matters into their own hands regarding this disease. Natural supplements like the ones listed above can all be found at your local or internet health food store.
*Statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Vitamins and herbs are not intended to diagnose, treat and cure or prevent disease. Always consult with your professional health care provider before changing any medication or adding Vitamins to medications.
September 24, 2008 09:17 AM
Balance is crucial for a healthy immune system. A variety of stressors such as bacteria, parasites, pollutants, strong emotions, and improper diet, can cause the immune system to become imbalanced. If the immune system is weakened then it is less able to fight against invading antigens. Disorders and reactions such as allergies, arthritis, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, Lupus, Crohn’s disease and diabetes can also occur if the immune system is overactive and begins to fight against itself. However, if the immune system is healthy and balanced, the body will be protected and healed from foreign invaders. But if the immune system is under active or non-responsive, it is susceptible to infection, illness, and emotional distress. By supplementing with natural immune modulators, the immune system can achieve and maintain optimum balance.
Cytokines consist of a variety of multifunctional molecules which work to regulate and control the body’s defense system. These biomolecules are crucial for optimal immune function as they play a key role in immunity, infectious disease, blood production, tissue repair, and cellular development and growth. Cytokines actually play an important role in a variety of body functions, ranging from general maintenance and the regulation of inflammatory responses to the direct interference of invading pathogens.
Cytokines are also important messengers that are used by the immune system to inform the rest of the body that an infection has been discovered. Any immune system imbalance can lead to interference between cytokines and proper body function. Different cytokines have different actions on the same cell. However, there is a large degree of overlap between the actions of one cytokine and another. Cytokines have been given a variety of names throughout the years including chemokines, monokines, interferons, interleukins, lymphotoxins, lymphokines, and leukokines. Cytokines are part of large signaling network that have additive, inhibitory, and synergistic effects.
The most important immune functions are carried out by groups of cytokines that are known as interleukin 1 and 2, interferons, and tumor necrosis factor. They help to modulate the immune system when the tissue is being threatened or damaged. Interleukin 1 helps to protect against the effects of radiation and encourage the growth of immune cells, while tumor necrosis factor is produced in response to bacteria and other disease-causing agents. Additionally, tumor necrosis factor also promotes the production of more cytokines. Tumor necrosis factor also has anti-tumor properties which increases the activity of other cells that fight tumors and also affects the blood system in tumors. It also effectively helps to slow down or reverse tumor growth by starving cancer cells of the nutrients they need and reducing blood flow.
Researchers are currently looking at treating various disorders with cytokines because it is clear that cytokines link the immune system to other physiological systems. Because of the intricate network of the cytokine processes, many researchers believe that the treatment of various immune disorders could potentially require a combination of immuno-regulatory factors. Many scientists are trying to recombining cytokines; however it is extremely limited because they are extremely expensive; they may be toxic and cause symptoms such as fever, muscle aches and fatigue; and they may create imbalances in the patient that would not benefit them.
As a result of these facts, researchers are turning their attention to a natural immune modulator such as hyperimmune egg and colostrum. Hyperimmune egg and colostrum can stimulate the production and activities of powerful immune agents and jump-start the body’s own defense system, instead of having to rely on drugs to fight invading pathogens.
Flax Seed Oil
August 07, 2008 01:53 PM
Flax seed naturally contains a variety of different categories of essential fatty acids, which includes alpha linoleic acid, linoleic acid, and omega-9 oleic acid. A lot of flax seed’s benefits are a function of its content of alpha linoleic acid, which is converted in the body to a longer chain of omega-3 EPA. Research has proven that supplementation with flax seed oil can help to increase the EPA concentrations in many tissues of the body. One of the main areas of research has been inflammation.
Many factors contribute to inflammatory reactions, including omega-6 linoleic acid, which can be converted into pro-inflammatory substances. Flax alpha linoleic acid can convert into EPA, which has the ability to convert into a prostaglandin that has anti-inflammatory properties. In inflammatory states, alpha linoleic acid and EPA compete with linoleic acid for enzymatic metabolism, resulting in a decreased production of pro-inflammatory substances. Many studies have found that the use of flax seed oil in domestic food preparation can reduce the production of inflammatory cytokines.
These studies have also shown the ability of omega-3 rich fish oils to inhibit inflammatory mechanisms in the autoimmune disease Lupus nephritis, which lead to the investigation into flax having any abilities in this area. One trial found that 30g/d of flax seed was optimal for improving kidney function, decreasing inflammation, and reducing atherosclerotic development. Flax also contains antioxidants, which may be helpful to those who have SLE.
Research has also been conducted to investigate the hormonal modulating effects of ingesting lignans, which are antioxidant and phyto-estrogenic compounds that are found in flax seed. Clinical evidence indicates that phytoestrogens have an anti-cancer effect on the breast. Experimental studies in animals and humans have also demonstrated flax’s anti-cancer effects, with a 1998 review indicating that the consumption of flax may be used as a secondary prevention method against breast cancer. Flax seed has also been shown to promote prostate health, as it plays a key role in the treatment of an enlarged prostate.
The cardiovascular system is also another area of research focus for flax seed. One study showed that three months of flax seed supplementation resulted in LDL cholesterol levels dropping significantly, while HDL cholesterol did not change. Other research has shown serum lipid level reduction, but a large amount of flax seed was required to be consumed to get the same lipid-lowering effects as fish oils. Flax lignans also possess anti-platelet activating factor activity and antioxidant activity. Animal research has shown that flax seed reduced the development of aortic atherosclerosis’ by 46 percent and suppressed oxygen-free radicals.
The research concluded that dietary flax seed supplementation could prevent hypercholesterolemia-related heart attack and strokes. Lastly, the elasticity of arteries is an important factor of circulatory function, which decreases as the cardiovascular risk increases. Research has proven that obese people consuming a diet high in ALA from flax seed oil experience a marked rise in arterial elasticity, which reflects a rapid improvement in the arterial circulation.
Although flax seed offers many potential benefits, ingesting the right form of supplemental flax is crucial to gaining these benefits. Flax oil supplements are a good source of EFAs, but they do not provide great amounts of lignans. On the other hand, whole or ground flax seed is effective, but is not especially palatable. The best option of flax seed is the liquid in capsule form, as it delivers both EFAs and lignans. The nutritional value and certain beneficial results can be gained by consuming about 3,000 mg daily.
August 06, 2008 11:21 AM
Traditionally, Cat's Claw has been used to treat arthritis, gastritis, tumors, dysentery, and female hormonal imbalances. Today, the plant has shown the ability to treat viral infections, minimize inflammation, and provide therapeutic action for stomach and bowel disorders including arthritis, Crohn’s Disease, ulcers, gastritis, parasites, diverticulitis, hemorrhoids, several types of cancer, irritable bowel syndrome, herpes, allergies, Lupus, diabetes, PMS, yeast infections, hypoglycemia, prostatitis, bursitis, and rheumatism. European studies are currently looking at Cat's Claw for its ability to treat AIDS and cancer. Additionally, the herb has been used for Athlete’s Foot, Ear infections, back pain, TMJ syndrome, fibromyalgia, canker sores, sinus infections, and asthma.
Peruvians have trusted the anti-inflammatory abilities of Cat’s Claw for many generations, as it was traditionally used for any type of rheumatism or arthritic joint condition. Many studies on the plant metabolites found in Cat’s Claw have found that it does inhibit inflammatory response for a fact. The plant sterols that are found in Cat’s Claw have the ability to reduce artificially induced swelling. After extensive research, scientists have found that the strong anti-inflammatory activity is due to the presence of all the compounds together. These same compounds have an intrinsic anti-inflammatory effect as well.
These findings confirm what herbalists have advocated for many generations: the fact that plants are designed to be used in their whole form in order to be biochemically effective. Pharmaceutical synthetic versions of herbal medication shave so many bad side effects because they have been chemically extricated and isolated, which eliminates the very crucial role of other compounds that are vital to the function of the plant.
Natural botanical remedies, on the other hand, have been designed by nature to work together. Natural anti-inflammatories are extremely important for treating diseases such as allergies and arthritis because they have a lot less side effects than the prescription NSAIDs that are currently being used by thousands of individuals. Back pain, joint pain, inflammation caused by histamine release, and a whole lot of other maladies have resulted in millions of dollars worth of anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen to be purchased.
Diseases such as AIDS and flesh-eating viruses have received a good amount of press coverage over the last several years. Although a lot of us may not feel immediately threatened by these viruses, we may not be as strong as we could be immunologically. Most of us are battling a never-ending list of ailments such as colds, flu, sore throats, earaches, athlete’s foot, yeast infections, chronic fatigue syndrome, herpes, and colitis.
With heart disease, cancer, and diabetes being responsible for thousands of deaths each year, our country as a whole is in poor health. Our immune systems, which are our build-in defense mechanisms, need to be kept in optimal working condition as infectious microorganisms and carcinogens constantly surround us. A healthy immune system has a great ability to fight off disease or at least minimize its stay in our body. By fortifying our defenses with certain herbs, vitamins, and antioxidants, we can greatly promote wellness in our bodies.
May 08, 2008 03:47 PM
Cetyl myristoleate is a fatty acid ester used largely as a dietary supplement to support joint mobility and the immune system. Chemically it is a natural hexadecyl ester of cis-9-tetradecanoic acid, an unsaturated fatty acid commonly known as myristoleic acid.
The acid is found naturally in fish and whale oils, and also in butter and kombo butter from the kombo nut. The ester is of a buttery consistency at normal room temperatures, and turns waxy when cooled, and it has no known uses other than as a health supplement, particularly for the treatment of arthritis and other inflammatory and immune system problems.
The substances appear to have similar therapeutic characteristics to unsaturated essential fatty acids, but with a stronger and more long lasting effect. It also appears to work in three distinctly different ways in that it acts as a joint lubricant, supports the immune system and functions in the same way as essential fatty acids.
Arthritis is a disease that has reached epidemic proportions worldwide, and it is estimated that more than 50 million Americans are affected by it. Until recently it was believed to be a disease of the aged, or associated with physical injury, but is now known to be more complex than that, with many manifestations and causes. Because of this, no single treatment is effective with all forms of arthritis, but cetyl myristoleate is the new kid on the block that is believe to make a significant contribution to the treatment of non-infective forms of the disease.
However, it was not always known, and a search in the textbooks for cetyl myristoleate prior to 1977 would have yielded nothing. Why 1977? It started with Harry W Diehl, a sugar chemist with an interest in the treatment of arthritis. While carrying out research on arthritis in mice, he was working on thin layer chromatographic analysis of a methylene chloride extract of macerated mice. He noticed a separation that was unknown to him, which was subsequently identified as cetyl myristoleate.
He had been unable to induce arthritis in mice, and believed that if he found out how to do that, then he should also be able to establish what made the mice immune to the disease, and so establish a cure. He soon established that it was this cetyl myristoleate circulating in the blood that protected the mice, and then found a way of synthesizing it in the lab by esterifying myristoleic acid.
Since the compound was unknown at that time Diehl patented it in 1977, hence the date. Apart from in mice, it has subsequently been found only in whale oil and in one of the glands of the male beaver, with no other known sources at the time of writing. There have been several studies that have supported the effect of cetyl myristoleate on arthritis, the first human study being in 1995 when 46 out of 48 arthritis patients showed significant improvement in articular mobility and reduction in pain. Others since have demonstrated similar results.
So how does it work? What is the mechanism by which this hitherto unknown substance helps to relieve the symptoms of osteo and rheumatoid arthritis? Being a fatty acid ester, cetyl myristoleate possesses lubricant properties, and one of its properties is to supplement the synovial fluid that lubricates the joints and tendons. This helps to keep the joints moving freely, and reduces their tendency to grind when the connective tissue wears. It also lubricates entire muscle groups, allowing them to slide over each other more freely, and also over bones allowing a smoother movement of the joints.
The second way, in which it operates, by supporting the immune system, is particularly appropriate to the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis which is caused by the immune system attacking the body’s own joint and connective tissue. In this respect, cetyl myristoleate has also been found effective in treating other immune system conditions such as multiple sclerosis and Lupus erythematosus.
Finally, it also possesses the mediation effect on the inflammatory reaction possessed by other essential fatty acids. This helps to reduce the effect of inflammation that causes much of the swelling and pain of arthritic conditions, although it occurs much faster than with other fatty acids. When taken together, all of these effects have a powerful effect in reducing the unpleasant symptoms of both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Swelling is reduced, mobility is improved and pain is alleviated. Improvements have been reported by sufferers of both types of arthritis, and in fact it is reported that Harry Diehl successfully treated his own arthritis with the substance before any other human tests had been carried out.
Cetyl Myristoleate is now used word-wide in significant quantities, and there have as yet been no confirmed reports of adverse side effects. However, as with many otherwise safe supplements, it is recommended not to be taken by pregnant or lactating women until it has been proved to definitely have no side effects on the fetus or young babies.
Although there is no definitive scientific evidence of the effectiveness of the substance in relieving the symptoms of arthritis, there is an overwhelming body of evidence from those that have used it world wide. The accepted treatment is by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and with over 16,0000 NSAID-related deaths in the USA alone each year, cetyl myristoleate is certainly worth considering as an alternative for arthritis sufferers. Not only that but there is a very significant price differential, with NSAIDs costing 5 – 10 times that of cetyl myristoleate.
Among the other benefits that people using the substance have reported are beneficial effects on psoriasis, hepatitis, high blood pressure, eczema, allergies, headaches and many more. Although many of these might be coincidence or psychosomatic, it cannot just be coincidence that many of them, such as psoriasis and allergies, are related to the immune system.
However, anybody with asthma or a history of severe allergic reactions should consult their physician before using the substance. That aside, there is more than enough popular evidence to indicate that cetyl myristoleate is effective in the treatment of arthritis in all its forms, and also good for your general state of health and wellness.
Your Brain on Tea
May 20, 2006 12:17 PM
In addition to supporting heart health, tea’s powerful phytonutrients have been found to beef up bones: British researchers found that women aged 65 to 75 who drank at least a cup a day had higher bone densities in their hips and spines—common sites for osteoporotic bone loss—than women who didn’t take tea (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 4/00). What’s more, early studies indicate that tea might help moderate excessive immune response that causes disorders such as Lupus.
The most intriguing research, however, involves the brain. According to Japanese scientist, drinking more than two cups of green tea a day drops dementia risk among older people (AJCN 2/06).
So remember the acient Chinese proverb: “Better to be deprived of food for three days, than tea for one.” And if you don’t have time for a freshly brewed cup, green tea extract is the next best thing. –Lisa James, Energy Times.
PYCNOGENOL - ITS REMARKABLE BENEFITS
July 13, 2005 12:26 PM
PYCNOGENOL - ITS REMARKABLE BENEFITS
New to North America but not to Europe, this natural product is considered safe and effective in the treatment of various diseases and for the maintenance of optimal health. This family of bioflavonoids is non-toxic, water soluble and highly bioavailable. Because proanthocyanidins scavenge free radicals so effectively, they have shown remarkable curative effects. Extensive research demonst rates that proanthocyanidins are such potent antioxidants, they find and neutralize free radicals with great rapidity, allowing cells to regenerate rather than deteriorate. Specific actions associated with Pycnogenol include:
PYCNOGENOL SPECIFICALLY TARGETS: SKIN AND ELASTICITY
Testing has suggested that Pycnogenol flavonoids exhibited an anti-enzyme effect which prevented the break down of collagen and elastin, the very compounds which keep skin firm and inhibit the formation of wrinkles.7
TUMOR RELATED DISEASES
Unquestionably, studies have shown that Pycnogenol has the ability to inhibit cellular mutations.8 The implications of this finding for anyone suffering from tumor related disease which originates from cellular malfunctions should not be underestimated.
The potential of Pycnogenol to pr e vent cellular deterioration or uncontrolled growth is profound to say the least. Several investigations have shown that if it is taken on a daily basis, Pycnogenol benefits people suffering from cardiovascular diseases and breast tumors.9 In addition, double blind placebo controlled studies have indicated that patients suffering from circulatory insufficiencies and diseases of the lymph system showed significant improvement in pain control and vessel elasticity after taking these flavonoids.10
Subsequent experiments concluded that the family of bioflavonoids contained in Pycnogenol is capable of improving night vision and initialing “a rapid and marked improvement of visual performances after glare in comparison with control group.”11
WATER RETENTION AND EDEMA
Pycnogenol is particularly valuable for anyone who suffers from water retention and edema. Studies at the Institute of Physiology at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences confirm that this biofl avonoid compound stabilized capillary walls, which decreased fluid leakage into tissues which causes swelling and pressure.12
WHAT PATHOLOGICAL CONDITIONS RESPOND TO PYCNOGENOL?
The bioflavonoids found in Pycnogenol have been clinically indicated in the following pathological conditions:
PYCNOGENOL HAS THERAPEUTIC VALUE FOR THE FOLLOWING CONDITIONS:
PYCNOGENOL CAN CROSS THE BLOOD-BRAIN BARRIER
One of the most significant advantages of this flavonoid compound is its ability to cross the blood-brain barrier. Consequently, it acts as an invaluable therapeutic agent in treating depression, chronic fatigue, insomnia or loss of memory.
ANTI-ULCER FORMING PROPERTIES
Other scientific tests have indicated that proanthocyanidins also posses anti-ulcer properties and may work to prevent the formation of undesirable chemicals in the stomach.13
Benefits and Functions of Essential Fatty Acids
June 25, 2005 08:29 PM
Benefits and Functions of Essential Fatty Acids
The body takes combinations of different triglycerides and makes fats from them to help in various processes. The basic building blocks of any fats are the fatty acids. Fatty acids are either essential or nonessential. A fatty acid is considered essential if 1) the body is unable to synthesize it and 2) the only way it can be obtained is through the diet. In addition, it is considered essential if a deficiency will cause a disease. As far back as 1930 researchers discovered that if an animal did not get essential fatty acids in the diet, it could cause symptoms such as poor reproduction, lowered immunity, rough, dry skin, and slow growth, among others. There are basically three essential fatty acids. They are linoleic acid, linolenic acid, and arachidonic acid. Linoleic acid is the most vital. Linolenic and arachidonic acids can be converted from linoleic acid, but linoleic acid must be obtained from the diet. Most people are unaware of the many vital functions of essential fatty acids. The list includes:
Cholesterol is synthesized throughout the body. It is manufactured by cells, glands, the small intestine and the liver. Cholesterol is constructed from dietary by-products of proteins, sugars and fats. If the diet contains excessive fats, especially the saturated types, the body will convert them into cholesterol. People who eat high sugar or fat diets may therefore experience elevated cholesterol levels.
Prostaglandins are found in almost all body cells, and act as catalysts for many physiological processes. They help prevent abnormal blood clotting and nerve inflammation. Prostaglandins also help promote blood circulation by dilating the blood vessels and improve immune system function. The most beneficial type of prostaglandin is called PGE-1. PGE-1 balances cholesterol and blood pressure levels, and stimulates the body’s production of T-lymphocytes which strengthen the immune capabilities. Each cell keeps tiny amounts of EFAs and produces prostaglandins from them as they are needed. The name prostaglandins was coined because these substances were originally found in high amounts in the prostate gland. To date, there have been discovered at least thirty-six different prostaglandins with a wide range of roles in the body.
Fighting Arthritis Naturally
June 10, 2005 02:16 PM
Fighting Arthritis Naturally
by Donna Lee Nardo Energy Times, January 8, 2002
The annoying pain of arthritis grows ever more annoying: one of every six Americans, 43 million people, suffer arthritis, the leading cause of disability in the US. No pharmaceutical can reliably cure arthritis or slow its progression without possibly causing side effects. But you can help heal your hurting joints with nutrients and other natural substances.
Every move you make hinges on healthy joints. The hinge joints in your fingers, knees and elbows swing back and forth. Ball and socket joints in our hips and shoulders twist and turn our arms and legs. But when arthritis attacks, joint function narrows, causing pain, stiffness, swelling and inflammation. While scientists search for the root cause of arthritis, they recognize that aging, injuries, allergies, a genetic tendency toward arthritis and being overweight all contribute to your risk. Researcher have identified more than 100 types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), gout, Lupus, scleroderma, vasculitis, myositis, infectious arthritis, degenerative joint disease and spondylitis. OA and RA represent two of the most common arthritis forms. OA generally attacks the finger joints and larger joints like the hips and knees. Cartilage lining the joint deteriorates, often as a by-product of aging, but this deterioration can happen at any age. Sprains, fractures and repetitive injuries can increase your chances of osteoarthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis occurs when joints become inflamed and your immune system apparently releases antibodies in response to allergens. This type of arthritis can destroy and immobilize joints. Traditionally, doctors have treated arthritis with acetaminophen, aspirin and other drugs called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). However, NSAIDs often offer only short-term relief. They can cause bleeding problems and ulcers. And while they may slow inflammation and pain, they also do nothing to repair damaged joints. A 1995 Journal of Rheumatology article also warned that prolonged NSAID use actually furthers deterioration of the joints (Oct/95; 22 (10):1941-6).
Glucosamine at Work
Scientists believe that injuries and aging deplete the body's supply of glucosamine, a natural substance that forms, maintains and repairs joint cartilage. Glucosamine supplements are thought to replenish the supply and are prescribed for arthritis therapy in many countries. Several studies indicate that glucosamine tackles pain and inflammation as effectively as NSAIDs without the side effects. It also helps rebuild arthritic joints. Research supporting glucosamine's benefits abounds in Europe and Asia. One study suggests that glucosamine sulfate supplements relieve pain as well as the NSAID ibuprofen (Osteoarthritis and Cartilage 1994; 2 (1):61-9). A recent Belgian study testing the effectiveness of glucosamine on patients with OA of the knee captured the attention of the American medical profession. Results suggest that glucosamine promotes physical changes in joints that halt the progression of OA (Lancet 2001, Jan 27; 357 (9252):251-56). After analyzing data from scores of clinical trials, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) saw enough promise in glucosamine to launch its own multi-year study.
Scientists have been testing the orange-yellow herb turmeric and have found that it may ease arthritis discomfort. Long a staple in the medical practices of Asia, turmeric has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that reduce swelling and pain associated with arthritis. Researchers think this spice, used in such Indian cuisine as curry, may work more effectively than cortisone and other drugs that reduce inflammation. Ellen Kamhi, PhD, RN, and co-author of Arthritis: An Alternative Medicine Definitive Guide, considers turmeric an important therapy for arthritis. "Turmeric is quite effective, and it's much safer than conventional drug anti-inflammatories, with far fewer possible adverse effects," says Dr. Kamhi, clinical instructor at the State University of New York-Stony Brook Medical School. One study on people with RA demonstrated that the natural benefits of turmeric equaled those provided by a popular prescription drug known to cause side effects (Indian J Med Res 1980; 71:632-4). Another trial, published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, found that turmeric possesses unique anti-inflammatory properties (1993; 38:113-119). A trial published in 1994 also found that turmeric acts as an antioxidant to help protect joints (J Pharm Pharmacol; 46:1013-16).
As we age, our bodies require more antioxidants to fight off damage caused by destructive molecules known as free radicals. Researchers believe that antioxidant nutrients can afford arthritis protection. A 10-year study evaluating the effect of vitamins C and E on the joints concluded that both nutrients protect against cartilage deterioration (Arthritis & Rheumatism 1996, April; 39 (4):648-56). According to Dr. Kamhi, "Arthritis is a lifestyle disease (and) no one remedy, either natural or pharmaceutical, will heal or reverse the arthritic process. Organic foods, exercise, stress reduction, and supplements can lead to a marked decrease in all arthritis symptoms with minimal side effects and enhanced overall health and wellness." While arthritis often makes sufferers limit their activity, experts agree that a sedentary lifestyle only exacerbates problem joints and that exercise maintains your range of motion. The type of activity recommended for each particular form of arthritis differs: for osteoarthritis, specific exercises like stretching and moving arthritic joints can help if more strenuous exercise forms are not possible. Rheumatoid sufferers need to use extra caution to prevent inflammatory flare-ups by balancing gentle exercise with rest. In any case, keep moving: performing household chores or spending time on your hobbies will profit painful joints.
In many cases of arthritis, maintaining an appropriate weight is critical. Surplus weight places extra stress on joints and accelerates cartilage deterioration. And don't be discouraged if your mainstream doctor pooh-poohs complementary arthritis control. "Any practitioner who categorically dismisses the use of all-natural therapies," advises Dr. Kamhi, "is not keeping up with reading current medical literature."