Artery-Dilating Flaxseed Proven A Potent Healer

Artery-Dilating Flaxseed Proven A Potent Healer | flaxseed_heals_arteries | Natural Medicine

A promising new study published in the journal Hypertension titled, “Potent antihypertensive action of dietary flaxseed in hypertensive patients,” reveals that dietary flaxseed may represent a powerful therapeutic intervention in patients with cardiovascular disease.

Canadian researchers at St. Boniface Hospital Research Centre, Winnipeg, conducted a human clinical trial in order to test whether flaxseed would produce measurable improvements in patients with peripheral artery disease (P.A.D), a condition in which atherosclerotic plaque builds up in the arteries that carry blood to the head, organs, and limbs.

The prospective, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, randomized trial, included 110 patients who ingested a variety of foods that contained 30 grams (approximately 4 tablespoons) of milled flaxseed or placebo each day over 6 months. The purpose of their study was to “examine the effects of daily ingestion of flaxseed on systolic (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) in peripheral artery disease patients,” as hypertension is commonly associated with P.A.D.

After six months, the results of the dietary intervention were impressive:

  • Blood plasma levels of the omega-3 fatty acid α-linolenic acid and enterolignans increased 2- to 50-fold in the flaxseed-fed group versus the placebo group.
  • Systolic blood pressure (SBP) was ≈ 10 mm Hg lower in the flaxseed group
  • Diastolic blood pressure (DBP) was ≈ 7 mm Hg lower in the flaxseed group

According to the study, “Patients who entered the trial with a SBP ≥ 140 mm Hg at baseline obtained a significant reduction of 15 mm Hg in SBP and 7 mm Hg in DBP from flaxseed ingestion.”

The researchers also found that circulating α-linolenic acid levels correlated with SBP and DBP, and lignan levels correlated with changes in DBP.

The final summary concluded: “[F]laxseed induced one of the most potent antihypertensive effects achieved by a dietary intervention.”

Discussion

Flaxseed’s health benefits are as complex as the components of the remarkable seed itself. Each component, including its fiber, lignans and omega-3 fatty acids, possess unique health benefits. In fact, over the past decade, hundreds of studies have been performed on whole flaxseed and/or its parts, revealing their value in over 100 health conditions. Top on the list of clinically confirmed health benefits are its anti-breast cancer properties, but it also contains the following properties of value in cardiovascular conditions:

  • Cholesterol Modulation: Flaxseed may reduce circulating total and LDL-cholesterol levels,[i] [ii] and prevent LDL cholesterol from oxidizing, which is what renders it atherogenic (heart-disease promoting).[iii]
  • Increased Blood Flow: Flaxseed consumption improves flow-mediated dilation of the arteries (brachial) and reduces blood pressure.[iv]
  • C-reactive Protein Reduction: Elevated C-reactive protein is often a marker for heart disease related inflammation and associated increased risk of cardiovascular events. A flaxseed-derived lignan supplement appears to reduce C-reactive protein in type 2 diabetics – a population a far greater risk for cardiovascular disease and associated events.[v]
  • Plaque Reduction: Dietary flaxseed accelerates the regression of atherosclerotic plaques in the rabbit model.[vi] It is believed that secoisolariciresinol diglucoside (SDG), a phytoestrogen present in flax, is responsible for this anti-atherosclerotic effect.[vii]

Other ways in which flaxseeds confer cardioprotective effects is through their anti-inflammatory activity, largely due to the abundance of omega-3 fatty acids they contain, and their fiber, which improves the elimination of oxidized lipids, cholesterol, fat-soluble toxins and hormone metabolites through its bile-binding action.

For more information on flaxseed’s remarkable heart-friendly properties, read our recent article “Evidence That Flaxseed Is A Heart Disease Reversing Food.”

For additional research on clinically confirmed natural alternatives to blood pressure drugs, read “Garlic Compares Favorably To A Best-Selling Blood Pressure Drug.


[i] An Pan, Danxia Yu, Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, Oscar H Franco, Xu Lin. Meta-analysis of the effects of flaxseed interventions on blood lipids. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 Aug;90(2):288-97. Epub 2009 Jun 10. PMID: 19515737

[ii] An Pan, Danxia Yu, Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, Oscar H Franco, Xu Lin. Meta-analysis of the effects of flaxseed interventions on blood lipids. Am J Clin Nutr. 2009 Aug;90(2):288-97. Epub 2009 Jun 10. PMID: 19515737

[iii] Rogelio U Almario, Sidika E Karakas. Lignan content of the flaxseed influences its biological effects in healthy men and women. J Am Coll Nutr. 2013 Jun ;32(3):194-9. PMID: 23885993

[iv] Sheila G West, Andrea Likos Krick, Laura Cousino Klein, Guixiang Zhao, Todd F Wojtowicz, Matthew McGuiness, Deborah M Bagshaw, Paul Wagner, Rachel M Ceballos, Bruce J Holub, Penny M Kris-Etherton. Effects of diets high in walnuts and flax oil on hemodynamic responses to stress and vascular endothelial function. J Am Coll Nutr. 2010 Dec ;29(6):595-603. PMID: 21677123

[v] An Pan, Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, Xingwang Ye, Zhijie Yu, Huaixing Li, Qibin Qi, Jianqin Sun, Yanqiu Chen, Xiafei Chen, Yong Liu, Xu Lin. Effects of a flaxseed-derived lignan supplement on C-reactive protein, IL-6 and retinol-binding protein 4 in type 2 diabetic patients. Br J Nutr. 2009 Apr;101(8):1145-9. PMID: 18775100

[vi] Andrew A Francis, Justin F Deniset, Jose A Austria, Renee K Lavallee, Graham G Maddaford, Thomas E Hedley, Elena Dibrov, Grant N Pierce. The Effects of Dietary Flaxseed on Atherosclerotic Plaque Regression. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2013 Apr 12. Epub 2013 Apr 12. PMID:23585134

[vii] Kailash Prasad. Natural products in regression and slowing of progression of atherosclerosis. Curr Pharm Biotechnol. 2010 Dec;11(8):794-800. PMID: 20874684

 

© March 30, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here http://www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter.


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10 Natural Substances That Could Help Cure Type 1 Diabetes

 10 Natural Substances That Could Help Cure Type 1 Diabetes | spices | Natural Medicine

Could the long-sought after cure for type 1 diabetes be as close as your kitchen cupboard? An accumulating body of scientific research appears to point in exactly that direction.

One so-called ‘incurable disease’ that afflicts millions of people around the world is type 1 diabetes. Unlike type 2 diabetes, where the body becomes resistant to its own insulin, type 1 is characterized by the inability of the body to produce enough insulin, as the beta cells within the pancreas which are responsible for the production of insulin (and the proinsulin from which it is made) are either destroyed or seriously impaired. This can happen due to autoimmune issues, bacterial or viral infections, incompatible foods in the diet and chemical exposures (or a combination of any one or more of these factors), to name but a few major triggers.

And yet, plenty of peer-reviewed and published research now indicates that plant compounds, including many found within commonly consumed foods, are capable of stimulating beta cell regeneration within the pancreas, and as a result may be potentially provide a cure – truly a four letter word, as far as the profit-based model of medicine goes, which thrives on the concept of the incurability of the disease-afflicted human body in favor of symptom management.

The discovery of the beta cell regenerative potential of various food and compounds is bound to upset a burgeoning diabetes industry, with millions of dollars of public and private money continually being poured into fund-raising efforts for a future “cure”; A cure that will presumably be delivered through the prohibitively expensive pharmaceutical,vaccine or biologic (e.g. stem cells, islet cell xenotransplantation) pipeline, which by the very nature of the FDA drug approval process requires the promotion of synthetic (and therefore patentable) compounds over natural ones.

Let’s take a look at the latest preclinical study on the topic, published last month in the Canadian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology[1]. An active fraction of flaxseed, which researchers named Linun usitassimum active fraction (LU6), was found to generate a wide range of benefits in a type 1 diabetes animal model, including the following:

  • Improved glucose utilization in the liver
  • Supported normalized glycogenesis (glucose forming activity) in the liver and muscle tissue
  • Reduced pancreatic and intestinal glucosidase inhibitory activity, which translates into lower post-meal blood sugar elevations

Even more remarkable was the observation that this flaxseed compound normalized plasma insulin and C-peptide levels (C peptide is not C-reactive protein, rather it is a direct indicator of how much insulin is being produced by the beta cells in the body. Learn more), an indication that beta cell function was effectively restored. The researchers described the truly amazing results as follows:

Normalization of plasma insulin and C-peptide levels were observed in diabetic mice, indicating endogenous insulin secretion after the treatment with LU6. The histochemical and immunohistochemical analysis on pancreatic islets suggests the role of LU6 fraction in islet regeneration and insulin secretion as evident in increase functional pancreatic islets producing insulin. Furthermore, significant insulin producing islet formation was also observed in in vitro PANC-1 cells after LU6 treatment, indicating the cellular aggregates to be newly formed islets. This suggests the potential of LU6 fraction in the formation of new islets in vitro, as well as in vivo. Thus, LU6 can be used as a nutraceutical-based first-line treatment for diabetes. [emphasis added]

Keep in mind that this is not the first time that flaxseed has been found to improve blood sugar disorders. We have a few studies on GreenMedInfo.com already indexed on the topic that you can view here: Flaxseed and Diabetes.

Furthermore, we have found a broad range of natural substances experimentally confirmed to stimulate beta cell regeneration, 10 of which are listed below:

  • Arginine: a 2007 study found that the amino acid L-arginine is capable of stimulating the genesis of beta cells in an animal model of alloxan-induced diabetes.[2]
  • Avocado: A 2007 study found that avocado seed extract reduced blood sugar in diabetic rats. Researchers observed a restorative and protective effect on pancreatic islet cells in the treated group.[3]
  • Berberine: A 2009 study found that this plant compound, commonly found in herbs such as barberry and goldenseal, induces beta cell regeneration in diabetic rats, which lends explanation for why it has been used for 1400 years in China to treat diabetes.[4]
  • Chard: A 2000 study found that chard extract given to diabetic rats stimulates the recovery of injured beta cells.[5]
  • Corn Silk: A 2009 study found that corn silk reduces blood sugar and stimulates beta cell regeneration in type 1 diabetic rats.[6]
  • Curcumin (from Turmeric): A 2010 study found that curcumin stimulates beta cell regeneration in type 1 diabetic rats.[7] Additionally, a 2008 study found that curcumin preserves pancreatic islet cell survival and transplantation efficiency.[8]
  • Genistein (from soy, red clover): A 2010 study found that genistein induces pancreatic beta-cell proliferation through activation of multiple signaling pathways and prevents insulin-deficient diabetes in mice.[9]
  • Honey: A 2010 human study found that long-term consumption of honey might have positive effects on the metabolic derangements of type 1 diabetes, including possible beta cell regeneration as indicating by increases in fasting C-peptide levels.[10]
  • Nigella Sativa (black seed): A 2003 animal study found that black seed consumption lead to partial regeneration/proliferation of the beta-cells.[11] A 2010 human study also found that the consumption of one gram of black seed a day for up to 12 weeks had a broad range of beneficial effects in diabetics, including increasing beta cell function.[12]
  • Stevia: A 2011 human study found that stevia has anti-diabetic properties, including revitalizing damaged beta cells, and compares favorably with the drug glibenclamide but without the adverse effects.[13]

For a full list of beta cell regenerating substances, view our page on the topic. The data is also available to download as a PDF, which members can acquire by using their membership tokens without paying the nominal fee.

For additional research on the topic of regenerative medicine and diabetes you can consult the articles 6 Bodily Tissues that Can Be Regenerated Through Nutrition and Diabetes: An Entirely Preventable and Reversible Disease. Or, visit our Health Guide on Blood Sugar Disorders.


[2] Ana Vasilijevic, Biljana Buzadzic, Aleksandra Korac, Vesna Petrovic, Aleksandra Jankovic, Bato Korac.Beneficial effects of L-arginine nitric oxide-producing pathway in rats treated with alloxan. J Physiol. 2007 Nov 1;584(Pt 3):921-33. Epub 2007 Aug 23. PMID: 17717015

[4] Jiyin Zhou, Shiwen Zhou, Jianlin Tang, Kebin Zhang, Lixia Guang, Yongping Huang, Ying Xu, Yi Ying, Le Zhang, Dandan Li. Protective effect of berberine on beta cells in streptozotocin- and high-carbohydrate/high-fat diet-induced diabetic rats. Eur J Pharmacol. 2009 Mar 15;606(1-3):262-8. Epub 2009 Jan 19. PMID: 19374872

[5] S Bolkent, R Yanardağ, A Tabakoğlu-Oğuz, O Ozsoy-Saçan. Effects of chard (Beta vulgaris L. var. Cicla) extract on pancreatic B cells in streptozotocin-diabetic rats: a morphological and biochemical study. J Ethnopharmacol. 2000 Nov;73(1-2):251-9. PMID: 11025163

[6] Jianyou Guo, Tongjun Liu, Linna Han, Yongmei Liu. The effects of corn silk on glycaemic metabolism. Nutr Metab (Lond).2009 Nov 23;6:47. PMID: 19930631

[7] Malee Chanpoo, Hattaya Petchpiboonthai, Busaba Panyarachun, Vipavee Anupunpisit. Effect of curcumin in the amelioration of pancreatic islets in streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice. J Med Assoc Thai. 2010 Nov;93 Suppl 6:S152-9. PMID: 21280528

[9] Zhuo Fu, Wen Zhang, Wei Zhen, Hazel Lum, Jerry Nadler, Josep Bassaganya-Riera, Zhenquan Jia, Yanwen Wang, Hara Misra, Dongmin Liu. Genistein induces pancreatic beta-cell proliferation through activation of multiple signaling pathways and prevents insulin-deficient diabetes in mice. Endocrinology. 2010 Jul ;151(7):3026-37. Epub 2010 May 19. PMID: 20484465

[10] Mamdouh M Abdulrhman, Mohamed H El-Hefnawy, Rasha H Aly, Rania H Shatla, Rasha M Mamdouh, Doaa M Mahmoud, Waheed S Mohamed. Metabolic Effects of Honey in Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus: A Randomized Crossover Pilot Study. J Med Food. 2012 Dec 20. Epub 2012 Dec 20. PMID:23256446

[11] Mehmet Kanter, Ismail Meral, Zabit Yener, Hanefi Ozbek, Halit Demir. Partial regeneration/proliferation of the beta-cells in the islets of Langerhans by Nigella sativa L. in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. Tohoku J Exp Med. 2003 Dec;201(4):213-9. PMID:14690013

[12] Abdullah O Bamosa, Huda Kaatabi, Fatma M Lebdaa, Abdul-Muhssen Al Elq, Ali Al-Sultanb. Effect of Nigella sativa seeds on the glycemic control of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol. 2010 Oct-Dec;54(4):344-54. PMID: 21675032

[13] Himanshu Misra, Manish Soni, Narendra Silawat, Darshana Mehta, B K Mehta, D C Jain. Antidiabetic activity of medium-polar extract from the leaves of Stevia rebaudiana Bert. (Bertoni) on alloxan-induced diabetic rats. J Pharm Bioallied Sci. 2011 Apr ;3(2):242-8. PMID: 21687353

 

©  March 29, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here http://www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter.


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Lung and Respiratory Detox and Benefits of Chaparral

Lung and Respiratory Detox and Benefits of Chaparral | Chaparral | Natural Health Natural Medicine Special Interests

There’s good news for sufferers of upper respiratory ailments. Chaparral is a flowering plant found in the deserts of southwest North America that may provide relief via its natural, organic compounds. Native Americans have historically appreciated chaparral for lung detox and addressing respiratory problems such as symptoms of bronchitis, cold, and congestion.

Chaparral is used by selective naturopaths and has gained a wave of recent attention by modern herbalists for its lung detox benefits. Most notable may be the expectorant effects of chaparral and its tendency to promote resistance to swelling and redness.

How Does Chaparral Work?

Chaparral contains nordihydroguararetic acid, or NGDA, a powerful antioxidant with a wide range of bonuses, including a resistance to irritation. Most upper respiratory conditions accompany, or are accompanied by, irritation and detoxifying may provide acute symptom relief. NDGA has also been shown to halt some histamine secretions in several models. Although more research is required, these findings suggest it may offer some form of therapeutic benefit for supporting the body’s ability to reduce the symptoms of upper respiratory distress.

Chaparral plants, which are hearty and rarely found outside their native desert environment, have a strong, creosote-like aroma; this odor is especially pungent after a rain shower and reminiscent of the chaparral tea traditionally made by native American Indians of the southwest. Chaparral tea may help detoxify respiratory problems associated with symptoms of bronchitis and colds by providing an expectorant action that keeps airways clear of mucus and build up. It deserves mention that only about 40% of the available NGDA is water soluble and more potent benefits can be found in a chaparral tincture extraction.

Benefits of Chaparral

One of chaparral’s uses dating back the furthest have to do with its potential to destroy harmful organisms. This can be underscored by its potent resistance to bacteria when used as a mouthwash. Research has also shown it to display resistance to fungus. When your normal lung detoxification mechanisms are compromised due to pollution from mold or spores, it’s good to have a natural, powerful option to fight back with and not rely on pharmaceutical or synthetic products.

As an overall defense during times of compromised respiratory health, research by the microbiology department at the Universidad Nacional de San Luis in San Luis, Argentina showed Chaparral to boost immune system response. This “all around health enhancement” combined with significant antioxidant activity may offer explanation for chaparral being included in many traditional blood and body cleansing tonics and detox formulas.

References:

  1. Lü JM, Nurko J, Weakley SM, Jiang J, Kougias P, Lin PH, Yao Q, Chen C. Molecular mechanisms and clinical applications of nordihydroguaiaretic acid (NDGA) and its derivatives: an update. Med Sci Monit. 2010 May;16(5):RA93-100. Review.
  2. Zang LY, Cosma G, Gardner H, Starks K, Shi X, Vallyathan V. Scavenging of superoxide anion radical by chaparral. Mol Cell Biochem. 1999 Jun;196(1-2):157-61.
  3. Pedernera AM, Guardia T, Calderón CG, Rotelli AE, de la Rocha NE, Genaro SD, Pelzer LE. Anti-ulcerogenic and anti-inflammatory activity of the methanolic extract of Larrea divaricata Cav. in rat. J Ethnopharmacol. 2006 May 24;105(3):415-20. Epub 2006 Jan 6.
  4. Quiroga EN, Sampietro AR, Vattuone MA. Screening antifungal activities of selected medicinal plants. J Ethnopharmacol. 2001 Jan;74(1):89-96.
  5. Quiroga EN, Sampietro AR, Vattuone MA. In vitro fungitoxic activity of Larrea divaricata cav. extracts. Lett Appl Microbiol. 2004;39(1):7-12.
  6. Davicino R, Mattar A, Casali Y, Porporatto C, Correa SG, Micalizzi B. In vivo immunomodulatory effects of aqueous extracts of Larrea divaricata Cav. Immunopharmacol Immunotoxicol. 2007;29(3-4):351-66.


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Sunlight Holds Key To Killing Breast Cancer

Sunlight Holds Key To Killing Breast Cancer | sunlight | Natural Medicine

A new study finds vitamin D — the ‘sunlight vitamin’ — strikes to the very heart of breast cancer malignancy.

Breast cancer is not what most people think. Beneath the intimidating statistics that make it seem like a juggernaut of inevitability or a time bomb of genetic determinism ready to go off in the asymptomatic breasts of millions of women, a far more complex conversation is occurring among clinicians and researchers concerning the true nature and causes of cancer, and why conventional therapies fail to turn the tide against the second highest cause of death in the Western world.  To fully appreciate this, one must go to the first hand research itself.

For instance, a new study published in The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology identifies an overlooked root cause of breast cancer (cancer stem cells), as well as a natural intervention that has yet to be incorporated into the conventional standard of cancer care.

Titled, “Vitamin D compounds reduce mammosphere formation and decrease expression of putative stem cell markers in breast cancer,” the new study brings to the forefront the role of breast cancer stem cells (BSCs) in breast tumor formation and their progression towards malignancy and treatment resistance. For many decades it was assumed that cancer results from DNA-damaged cells succumbing to fundamentally chaotic processes, ‘going rogue’ and reproducing clonally (making identical copies of one another), without an acknowledgment of the different types of cells that comprise tumors. The most salient difference is between the cancer stem cells (sometimes referred to as ‘mother’ cells) which are capable of theoretically infinite self-renewal and produce all the differentiated ‘daughter’ cells in a tumor colony, which themselves are not capable of living indefinitely. It is actually the existence of the much smaller number of cancer stem cells which causes cancer recurrence, as they are not only resistant to conventional chemotherapy and radiation, but their numbers can actually be increased (enriched) by these two ‘therapies.’ Therefore, any cancer therapy that ignores the cancer stem cell subpopulation in favor of killing the non-tumorigenic daughter cells in order to ‘debulk’ the tumor (i.e. shrink it), will not result in destroying the root of the cancer. To the contrary, it can generate the illusion of ‘remission’ while in fact making the remaining tumor colony far more malignant, setting up the conditions for aggressive recurrence years later.

The new study focused on a type of breast tissue abnormality known as ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), which for decades was considered cancer (constituting about 20% of all breast cancer diagnoses), but recently has been identified as a benign lesion of epithelial origin. There are cases where DCIS progresses towards another breast abnormality known as invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC), which is considered a more serious risk. But even IDC cases may never progress to cause symptoms, nor ever cause harm to those within which it occurs. Nonetheless, the conventional medical system still considers a diagnosis of either DCIS or IDC justification for aggressive interventions, e.g. lumpectomy, mastectomy, radiotherapy and chemotherapy, indicating that if there is a natural intervention to decelerate the trajectory from DCIS to IDC, especially if it focuses on targeting and/or reducing the expression and growth of breast cancer stem cells, it is of great clinical relevance.

The new study sought to determine whether vitamin D3 and an analog known as BXL0124 are capable of inhibiting the progression of DCIS to IDC, and whether this effect is mediated through an influence on breast cancer stem cells (BCSCs). The study used a mammosphere cell culture system, which is a clump of mammary gland cells that includes breast cancer stem cells along with non-stem cell breast cells.

The researchers found that when the Vitamin D compounds were administered to the mammosphere culture it was observed to undergo a transition from a state of disorganization and irregularity in shape to a more organized and symmetrical shape similar to spheres formed by a non-malignant, normal mammary epithelial cell line. This cancer-defying effect of the vitamin D compounds was described in terms of a reduction in the so-called ‘mammosphere forming efficiency (MFE).” Moreover, treatment with vitamin D compounds was found to repress cell markers associated with stem cell-like phenotype (e.g. CD44, CD49f,c-Notch1, andpNFkB), as well as pluripotency markers (e.g. OCT4 and KLF-4), another property found within cancer stem cells.

The study concluded:

“Cancer progression, metastasis, and recurrence are significant problems in managing breast cancer. A significant body of evidence indicates that breast cancer stem cells drive these processes, complicating treatment strategies. A better understanding of how BCSCs drive breast cancer progression will aid in developing targeted therapies toward BCSCs. Our present study suggests a potential treatment strategy to reduce the putative BCSC population, and therefore enhance the effectiveness of breast cancer prevention and treatment through the use of vitamin D compounds.” [emphasis added]

Regardless of whether DCIS or ICS really do represent a mortal threat to the health and lives of women, this study indicates that vitamin D targets the most malignant cell type found within breast cancer — the cancer stem cells — which is infinitely more selective an intervention than radiation and chemotherapy; nor does vitamin D have the profoundly damaging side effects of conventional cancer treatment.

Vitamin D, of course, is designed to be manufactured through the ultraviolet B-stimulated conversion of the cholesterol metabolite 7-dehydrocholesterol in the skin. The fact that in the modern era the breasts are never exposed to sunlight and that generally speaking adequate sunlight exposure (especially considering the over-use of vitamin-D blocking and carcinogenic petroleum-based sunscreens) is rare, it is likely that many of the variations in breast morphology increasingly being diagnosed through technologies like mammography as being ‘abnormal’ or ‘precancerous,’ directly reflect a deficiency of sunlight and Vitamin D.  While the U.S. Preventive Task Force does not believe there is enough evidence supporting the benefit of vitamin D screening in routine practice, there is no harm in getting a blood test to determine one’s levels relative to the background population. And since vitamin D3 supplementation is affordable and extremely safe relative to commonly prescribed pharmaceuticals like Tamoxifen (a known carcinogen), it may provide those at risk for breast cancer or breast cancer recurrence with a reasonable alternative to watchful waiting and/or preventive chemotherapy.

For additional research on risk factors for breast cancer stem cell enrichment, as well as natural substances found to kill them, take a look at our database page on the topic: Breast Cancer Stem Cells, as well as the larger database section on Cancer Stem Cells in general.

© March 20, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here http://www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter.

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Birch Essential Oil For Arthritis, Muscle And Joint Pain

Birch Essential Oil For Arthritis, Muscle And Joint Pain | birch-tree | Natural Medicine Special Interests

Once you move beyond the basic, everyday essential oils that we all know and love, it becomes time to explore some of the more esoteric oils that solve specific ailments.  In my own exploration of essential oils, a specific ailment high on my list was relief from muscle and joint pain.

The oil of choice?  Birch essential oil for arthritis and other aches and pains of the muscles and joints is perfect!

Not only is Birch effective against common, everyday aches and pains, but it is superior if not outstanding in providing relief from arthritis joint pain and those deep, spasmodic cramps that only seem to visit in the dead of night.

What is Birch Oil?

Not surprisingly, Birch essential oil comes from the bark of birch trees. The scientific name is Betula Lenta and sometimes the oil is referred to as Sweet Birch Oil.

Pure, unadulterated birch oil, while not rare, can be difficult to find. That said, it is not an expensive oil relatively speaking.  What makes it special is that 100% pure Birch essential oil contains both salicylic acid and methyl salicylate. Both have a cortisone-like quality that reduces discomfort in the muscles, bones, and joints and in addition, are recognized as germicides and bactericides in the world of medicine.

Whereas Birch essential oil is an effective anti-spasmodic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, disinfectant, astringent, and diuretic, it really shines in its use to combat muscle and joint pain.  Bar none, Birch is the oil you want to use to relieve the pain of arthritis, tendonitis, gout, and severe muscle cramping.

How to Use Birch Oil to Fight Arthritis, Muscle and Joint Pain

In my own household, we use Birch essential oil blended synergistically with both Geranium and Lemongrass oils.  We came up with this formula by trial and error and although it uses other oils, we still fondly refer to it as “The Birch”.

We use “The Birch” in two ways: as a topical, roller-ball application diluted with fractionated coconut oil, and also as a heavy duty pain-relieving salve. According to Shelly, who is also known as the Survival Husband, the back to back use of both the roller ball and the salve, morning and night, has made the arthritis in his hands bearable.

Here is what he has to say:

“Before using the essential oils Gaye made up for me, I had so much arthritis pain in my right hand that at times my hand was non-functional.  After using the EO blends morning and night for five months, my arthritis pain has almost disappeared.

I can ride my Harley, play golf, do my chores, and simply get through the day with minimal discomfort.”

Replicating the formula I made for Shelly is easy.  Here are my two “arthritis busting” recipes.  That is what I call them although, of course, they are used for other aches and pains as well.

Arthritis Busting Roller Ball Formula

6 drops Birch Essential Oil
6 drops Geranium Essential Oil
6 drops Lemongrass Essential Oil

Add the oils to a 5ml roller ball bottle.  Top with enough fractionated coconut oil (FCO) to fill the bottle.  If you are using a 10ml roller ball bottle, just fill half way.  (I find that the 10ml size is more common.)

Arthritis Busting Salve

30 drops Birch Essential Oil
30 drops Geranium Essential Oil
30 drops Lemongrass Essential Oil

Add the oils to a 1 ounce jar (I use both these and these).  Top with either Plain “Simple” Salve or DIY Miracle Healing Salve and mix well with a small stick (I use a coffee stir stick).  Use twice daily or as needed.

A Word of Caution

Birch essential oil is a strong oil and if used undiluted, may cause irritation.  In addition, Birch should be avoided by those who use blood thinners, have epilepsy, or women who may be pregnant.

If you do use blood thinners, I suggest substituting the birch essential oil with additional drops of lemongrass oil. While not quite as effective as Birch, Lemongrass EO is an amazing pain reliever in it’s own right.  It is also a very inexpensive oil.

About Essential Oils

After a significant amount of research, for health, first-aid, and wellness purposes I use essential oils from Spark Naturals.  There are a lot reasons, the most important being their commitment to both quality and value.  I am satisfied that the raw materials used in Spark Naturals products are tested and authenticated to be of pharmaceutical grade purity.

If you decide to make a purchase from Spark Naturals, please know that you will enjoy a 10% discount on your order when you use the code BACKDOORSURVIVAL at checkout. (Note:  I do receive a small commission on your purchase and for that I extremely appreciative.)

The Final Word

As I have mentioned, we call our Arthritis Busting formulas, “The Birch”.  In reality, the title of this article could have been “Using Essential Oils for Joint and Muscle Pain”. Still, with Birch essential oil being a key component, I wanted to introduce the oil to you along with some of its beneficial properties so that you can explore more uses on your own.

Personally, I love using all three of the oils in “The Birch” and even though I do not have arthritis myself, I find the formula useful for breaking down those knots of stress that appear on my neck and on my shoulders.  And for cramping hands and toes?  Nothing beats “The Birch” aka the Arthritis Busting formula.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!Save

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3 Foods That Promote Healthy Lungs

3 Foods That Promote Healthy Lungs | cayenne-pepper | Natural Medicine Special Interests

Pistachios

Pistachios don’t provide the same direct lung cleansing benefits the way many herbs do, but they’re still important to anyone interested in improving their lung health. Studies suggest that pistachios may help prevent lung cancer [1]. They contain a special type of Vitamin E, known as gamma-tocopherol that can possibly offer a certain level of protection against some forms of lung cancer. More research is needed to prove this conclusively, but, either way, these delicious nuts still provide a spectrum of benefits.. Pistachios are also thought to help lower cholesterol. Raw pistachios are the best choice and make a great, regular snack. It’s easy to snack on raw nuts and experience satisfaction without empty calories or the weight gain that comes with them.

Plantain Leaf

Plantain is another food that can help cleanse your lungs. Plantain Leaf, which is a popular food wrap in Cuba and other Latin American countries, is not seen in the mainstream in North American. However, you can find it, and I would recommend using plantain leaf makes as a very tasty wrap around a number of foods. A quick online search for “plantain leaf recipes” will bring up items you should try. As always, avoid recipes that call for processed sugar or flour, use organic or locally grown, vegetables and hormone free foods as ingredients.

Cayenne Pepper

Eaten both as a foodstuff and used as a seasoning, these popular peppers can contribute as many as 17 health and wellness benefits to the body. They have been known to help suppress irritating coughs and sore throats and help with indications of cold and flu. Cayenne pepper helps break up and move congested mucus, making it a recommended food for anyone who is suffering from bronchial congestion or respiratory ailments.

The Best Lung Support Supplement: Allertrex®

In addition to these effective foods, you can also supplement with Allertrex®. This powerful lung cleansing formula consists of a blend of all natural herbs that have been used to help lung related symptoms for centuries. Allertrex® is alcohol-free and the first product of its kind on the market.

References:

  1. American Association for Cancer Research. Pistachios may reduce lung cancer risk. Press Releases:2009. 2009 December 8.

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Honey and Black Seed Combo Cures 57% of H. Pylori Patients

Honey and Black Seed Combo Cures 57% of H. Pylori Patients | honey | Natural Medicine Special Interests

H. pylori infection may be treated effectively with two ancient food-based remedies, new research suggests.

Natural solutions for H. pylori are gaining increased attention due to the failure of conventional antibiotics to produce a permanent resolution of the condition without attendant adverse effects. In a previous post entitled “3 Natural H. Pylori ‘Cures’ That Are Clinically Proven,” we reported on broccoli sprouts, probiotics, and black seed, as evidence-based natural interventions. Now, a new study published in the International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents reveals that black seed in combination with honey results in the resolution of about 1 in 2 cases of H. pylori infection.

The study entitled, “Combination of Nigella sativa and Honey in Eradication of Gastric Helicobacter pylori Infection,” provided background on the increasing problem of antibiotic-resistant cases of H. pylori in the studied Iranian population:

“Owing to the alarming rate of anti-H. pylori drug resistance (14% – 45% for clarithromycin, 40% – 65% for metronidazole, and 2-37% for amoxicillin in Iran), eradication of H. pylori remains a global challenge (2, 5, 6).”

Due to the state of conventional treatment, the authors sought to test “new safe, feasible and affordable alternatives.”

The study design was described as follows:

“Nineteen patients who had positive result for H. pylori infection by urea breath test (UBT) without a past history of peptic ulcer, gastric cancer or gastrointestinal bleeding, were suggested to receive one teaspoon of the mixture of Dosin (6 g/day of N. sativa as ground seeds and 12 g/day of honey) three times a day after meals for two weeks. The second UBT was used to detect the presence of H. pylori four weeks after completion of the test. In addition, symptoms of dyspepsia were scored before and after the study and analyzed with Wilcoxon signed-rank test.”

The results were reported as follows:

“Fourteen patients completed the study. Negative UBT was observed in 57.1% (8/14) of participants after intervention. The median and interquartile range (IQR) of total dyspepsia symptoms was significantly reduced from 5.5 (5 – 12) to 1 (0 – 4) (P = 0.005). All the patients tolerated Dosin except for one who was excluded due to mild diarrhea. No serious adverse events were reported.”

These results are remarkable when you consider that two previous studies using conventional antibiotics, also conducted on Iranian population, resulted in slightly lower rates of eradication. The first which involved the use of 4 drugs  (omeprazole, amoxicillin, each administered twice daily for the first five days, followed by omeprazole, clarithromycin and furazolidone, twice daily for the remaining nine days) resulted in eradication in 50.9% of patients. The second study, which used 4 drugs, (omeprazole, clarithromycin, amoxicillin and bismuth twice daily for 14 days) resulted in 49.1% reduction.

The researchers also pointed out that even though their combination of honey and black seed may not eradicate H. pylori in all cases, it has a palliative effect in gastrointestinal symptoms in non-ulcer dyspepsia. This is likely not true for conventional antibiotics which may have a wide range of adverse effects related to the depopulation of beneficial gut bacteria. In fact, we recently reported on the use of a special form of honey to treat one of the most common and deadly forms of antibiotic-related infections, namely , C. difficile. Learn more: Exotic Honey Comes To Rescue In Fighting Deadly C. Difficile

To learn more about natural H. pylori eradication therapies view our database on the topic: Helicobacter Pylori research.

© March 17, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here http://www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter.

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Broccoli Can Stimulate Brain Regeneration, New Research Suggests

Broccoli Can Stimulate Brain Regeneration, New Research Suggests | broccoli | Natural Medicine Science & Technology Sleuth Journal Special Interests

For decades it was believed that brain regeneration was not possible. But an accumulating body of research now reveals that common foods such as broccoli contain compounds capable of stimulating the repair and renewal of nerve tissue.

Ever since Santiago Ramón y Cajal, the father of neuroscience, declared “nothing may be regenerated” in the adult brain, the idea that you can repair or regenerate damaged brain tissue was precluded by this central dogma. But compelling evidence for brain regeneration began to surface in the 1960’s with a report by MIT scientist Joseph Altman that the hippocampus of adult rats and guinea pigs and the cortex of cats indeed underwent a process termed neurogenesis,1  i.e. the growth and development of nervous tissue.

In the decades that followed, more and more evidence began to amass showing the brain is in a continually dynamic state of self-repair and self-regeneration, relying on neural stem cells to replace and repair damaged and aged tissue. Clearly, in an era of widespread neurodegenerative disease which the conventional medical establishment claims are incurable, this discovery is encouraging. If the brain can regenerate, the the key is to find out how to prevent interference with this process and/or ascertain methods to increase and support its innate self-healing capacity.

In a previous report, we looked at research on a compound found in turmeric known as aromatic-tumerone. This fat soluble component appears to be an ideal candidate for enhancing the brain’s natural regenerative process. Learn more by reading How WHOLE Turmeric Heals The Damaged Brain.

But this is just scratching the surface. We have indexed over 45 natural substances with putative neuritogenic properties which can be viewed here: Pharmacological Action: Neuritogenic.

The newest addition to this list is sulforophane, an incredibly powerful sulfur-containing biomolecule found in cruciferous vegetables. Our sulforophane database contains research on its potential therapeutic value in about 200 different conditions. You can read our recent review on this amazing healing food component here: Top 10 Reasons to Eat Your Cruciferous Veggies.

Now, a new study published in the journal Genesis entitled, “Effects of sulforaphane on neural stem cell proliferation and differentiation,” reveals that sulforaphane may have significant ameliorative properties against the underlying pathological disturbances found in common neurodegenerative diseases such as increased oxidative stress, inflammation, perturbed calcium homeostasis, and neuronal death.  The authors of the study theorized that sulforaphane may mitigate these factors, along with stimulating neural stem cells (NSC) activity. An already robust body of literature exists indicating that sulforaphane has the following beneficial pharmacological actions:

  • Up-regulation of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), which increases innate antioxidant mechanisms.
  • Suppressing of interleukin-1b (IL-1b), to exert its anti-inflammatory effects.

In contradistinction, the new study sought to evaluate if sulforphane is capable of protecting, and regulating neural stem cells in such a way as to confer neuroprotective properties. It also sought to determine if sulforophane’s therapeutic properties depend in some way on its Wnt signaling properties, which has been identified as a key molecular pathway involved in tissue regeneration.

The Promising Study Results

First, the researchers determined the optimal concentration range of sulforophane in promoting neural stem cell (NSC) growth without harming neurons. The researchers determined that “Concentrations of less than 5 mM did not induce cytotoxic effects, but rather potentially promote the growth of NSCs.”

Second, the researchers determined that sulforophane indeed modified genes in the WnT signaling pathway.

Finally, the researchers determined that exposing NSCs to sulforaphane resulted in their differentiation to neurons, lending powerful support to the hypothesis that sulforaphane could stimulate brain repair.

The researchers concluded:

“In summary, we demonstrated that the crucifer-derived SFN can effectively stimulate NSC proliferation and differentiation by modifying genes in Wnt signaling pathway. Due to its lipophilic property and low molecular weight, SFN has a high bioavailability as an orally administered drug (Houghton, Fassett, & Coombes, 2013). SFN represents a food-derived compound that has been successfully translated from lab bench to clinics. (Bahadoran et al., 2012). It can be expected that SFN would see a shorter clinical path toward the market. Our data indicate that SFN is not only an Nrf2 inducer, but also a Wnt activator, which places SFN in a category distinct from other phytochemicals. The effects of SFN in restoring Wnt signaling provides a wealth of opportunities for the treatment of stem-cell-related diseases characterized by suppressed Wnt signaling. Further clinical studies are warranted to corroborate the neuroprotective effects of SFN in patients.”

I believe this research provides compelling evidence that the consumption of sulforophane-containing foods may have therapeutic value in brain degenerative disorders. Considering that sulforophane is a naturally occurring biomolecule which has been part of the human diet since time immemorial, it is likely that its regular consumption via culinary practices delivers physiologically significant quantities in a delivery system — food — that is safe and effective in the prevention of disease. Also, it is an astounding feature of this biomolecule that it has been identified to have potential value in preventing and/or treating about 200 different health conditions. This means that the side benefits of consuming it are orders of magnitude higher than one would anticipate if one were simply looking to consume it for one specific concern. That’s the amazing thing about healing with whole foods: their health benefits are too vast to bottle-neck into simply one or two applications.

What is the best way to obtain sulforphane?

While all Cruciferous vegetables contains significant amounts of sulforaphane, the sprouts of broccoli have several orders of magnitude higher concentratiuons of sulforaphane versus the mature broccoli plant, gram-per-gram. Learn more by watching the informative video below:

Additional References

Feb. 2012, The Guardian: Does your brain produce new cells?

 

© March 16, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here http://www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter.

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Black Seed May Treat Hypothyroidism (Hashimoto’s Disease), Clinical Trial Reveals

Black Seed May Treat Hypothyroidism (Hashimoto's Disease), Clinical Trial Reveals | black_seed_hashimotos_natural_cure_greenmedinfo | Medical & Health Natural Medicine

A recent clinical trial indicates that the most common cause of hypothyrodism (Hashimoto’s disease) may be improved with the addition of only two grams of powdered black seed daily. 

A powerful new randomized clinical trial reveals that the ancient healing food known as nigella sativa (aka “black seed”), once known as the “remedy for everything but death,” may provide an ideal treatment for the autoimmune thyroid condition known as Hashimoto’s disease, which is the most common cause of hypothyroidism.

The new study, published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, evaluated the effects of nigella sativa on thyroid function, serum Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) – 1, Nesfatin -1 and anthropometric features in patients with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

The study took 40 patients with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, aged between 22 and 50 years old, and randomized them into one group receiving two grams of powdered encapsulated Nigella sativa and the other 2 grams starch placebo daily for 8 weeks.. Changes in anthropometric variables, dietary intakes, thyroid status, serum VEGF and Nesfatin-1 concentrations were measured.

The positive results were reported as follows:

“Treatment with Nigella sativa significantly reduced body weight and body mass index (BMI). Serum concentrations of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) and anti-thyroid peroxidase (anti-TPO) antibodies decreased while serum T3 concentrations increased in Nigella sativa-treated group after 8 weeks. There was a significant reduction in serum VEGF concentrations in intervention group. None of these changes had been observed in placebo treated group. In stepwise multiple regression model, changes in waist to hip ratio (WHR) and thyroid hormones were significant predictors of changes in serum VEGF and Nesgfatin-1 values in Nigella sativa treated group (P < 0.05).”

The researchers concluded:

“Our data showed a potent beneficial effect of powdered Nigella sativa in improving thyroid status and anthropometric variables in patients with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Moreover, Nigella sativa significantly reduced serum VEGF concentrations in these patients. Considering observed health- promoting effect of this medicinal plant in ameliorating the disease severity, it can be regarded as a useful therapeutic approach in management of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.”

What is Hashimoto’s Disease and Why Does Synthetic T4 Fail To Improve Well-Being

Hashimoto’s disease can be a devastating condition, especially when treated with a conventional medical approach. Also known as chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis, it is a progressive autoimmune disease where, in the many cases, the thyroid gland is eventually destroyed. It is considered the most common cause of hypothyroidism in North America. Some additional salient facts are:

  1. About 5% of the U.S. population will be affected by Hashimoto’s thyroiditis at some point in their life.

  2. Hashimoto’s occurs up to 15 times  more often in women than in men. The highest density of Hashimoto’s cases are between 30 and 60 years of age.

  3. Postpartum thyroiditis occurs in about 10% of patients.

  4. Hashimoto’s related hypothyroid is often under-diagnosed because the reference ranges were drawn from an unscreened population likely inclusive of those already suffering from suboptimal thyroid function or outright dysfunction.

The standard of care is to ‘manage,’ or artificially suppress, modulate, and/or replace hormone levels. Hypothyroidism caused by Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is most commonly treated with synthetic T4 in an attempt to reduce TSH levels under 5.0 U/ml. This often results in the appearance of TSH normalization, with downstream adverse effects, and without concomitant improvements in well-being. Dr. Kelly Brogan, MD, further elaborates:

“For those who do receive the label of hypothyroid, they remain obliquely objectified by their lab work as their doctors use synthetic T4 – Synthroid – to attempt to move their TSH within range, more often leaving them symptomatic but “treated” because of poor conversion to active thyroid hormone (T3) and suppression of natural T3 production because of their now lower TSH.”

It should be noted that while synthetic T4 is described by its manufacturer to be “identical to that produced in the human thyroid gland,” it is in actuality quite different. This has to do primarily with the fact that while the primary structure of amino acids in synthetic thyroxine produced from genetically modified yeast is virtually identical to that produced by the human thyroid gland, the secondary, tertiary and quaternary folding patterns of that protein may differ in significant ways. Known as the protein’s conformational state, a slight change in folding structure can alter function profoundly. This could account for widespread reports of dissatisfaction among those treated with synthetic thyroid versus natural forms extracted from the glands of pigs.

Even if the T4 produced synthetically were identical in structure and function to natural T4, the reality is that virtually all T4 found naturally in the human body is not found in its free state.

Moreover, T4 is found inextricably bound together with T3, T2, T1, and calcitron, in the extraordinarily complex Thyroxine Binding Globulin (TBG) protein. Clearly, therefore, pharmaceutical preparations of isolated T4 can not be considered identical to whole-food complexed thyroid hormones derived from natural extracts.

In a post titled, “Natural Desiccated Thyroid and Synthetic are NOT the Same,” from thyroid-s.com, this point is driven home powerfully:

Black Seed May Treat Hypothyroidism (Hashimoto's Disease), Clinical Trial Reveals | TBG-1024x830 | Medical & Health Natural Medicine

“To graphically illustrate the huge differences between Natural Desiccated Thyroid as compared to T4 Only Synthetics, please consider this graphic. It attempts to show the tiny T4, T3, T2, T1 and Calcitonin hormones tightly bound to the very large thyroglobulin molecules as found in Natural Desiccated Thyroid. Remember that the Thyroglobulin molecule is approximately 1,000 TIMES BIGGER than the T4 molecule. Then it also shows the tiny T4 molecules as found in synthetic T4 only products. The pharmaceutical companies would have us believe these are bio-identical. We will let you decide.”

Moreover, research published in 2010 in the Archives of Pharmaceutical Research shows that levothyroxine preparations are widely contaminated with a “mirror image” stereoismer called dextro-thyroxine at a level as high as 1-6% by dry weight. D-thyroxine violates the left-handed ‘chirality’ of natural thyroxine and is a powerful, cardiotoxic endocrine disruptor.

The process by which levothyroxine sodium is produced today is highly synthetic and involves the use of a wide range of chemicals. One patent describes the dizzyingly complex process as follows:

“The process for preparation of Levothyroxine sodium comprises the steps, wherein compound obtained from steps a-g is prepared by conventional methods, a. nitrating L-tyrosine to give 3,5- dinitro-L-tyrosine, b. acetylating 3,5- dinitro-L-tyrosine to give 3,5- dinitro-N-acetyl L-tyrosine, c. esterifying the compound obtained from step (b) to give 3,5- diπitro-N-acetyl L-tyrosine ethyl ester, d. reacting the compound obtained from step (c) with p-TsCI in presence of pyridine to give corresponding tosylate salt, which is further reacting with 4-methoxy phenol to give 3,5- DinKro-4-p-methoxy phenoxy-N-acetyl-L-phenyl alanine ethyl ester, e. the compound obtained from step (d) is hydrogenated to give 3,5-diamino-4-p-methoxy phenoxy-N-acetyl-L-phenyl alanine ethyl ester, f. the compound obtained from step (e) is tetrazotized and iodized to give 3,5-Diiodo-4-p- methoxy phenoxy-N-acetyl-L-phenyl alanine ethyl ester, g. the compound obtained from step (f) is O-demethylated, N-deacetylated, and deesterified using aqueous HI in acetic acid to give 3,5-Diiodo-4-p-hydroxy phenoxy-L-pheπyl alanine followed by preparing hydrochloride salt of same and isolating, drying it h. lodinating 3,5-Diiodo-4-p-hydroxy pheπoxy-L-phenyl alanine HCI salt using methyl amine,”

Clearly, synthetic T4 treatments, even if effective at suppressing TSH, may not produce clinical outcomes that translate into improvement in well-being. Nor do they address or resolve the root causes of Hashimoto’s, which include selenium deficiency, wheat intolerance, and vitamin D/sunlight deficiency [view studies on these links on our Hashimoto’s research dashboard], along with a wide range of still yet unknown environmental, dietary, lifestyle, and mind-body factors.  Perhaps this latest study on black seed provides a new avenue for mitigating and correcting the metabolic and endocrine factors that are disturbed in Hashimoto’s disease, or at least complementing conventional treatment with a food-based approach that can improve both the subjective and objective aspects of the disease.

For more information on natural and integrative approaches to thyroid disease visit the following resource pageson GreenMedInfo.com:

To learn more about the powerful health benefits of black seed visit our research dashboard on the subject: Nigella Sativa (aka Black Seed)

 

©  March 15, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here http://www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter.

The post Black Seed May Treat Hypothyroidism (Hashimoto’s Disease), Clinical Trial Reveals appeared first on The Sleuth Journal.


Source: Alternative news journal

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Exotic Honey Comes To Rescue In Fighting Deadly C. Difficile Infections

Exotic Honey Comes To Rescue In Fighting Deadly C. Difficile Infections | manuka-honey | Natural Medicine

Today, an alarming number of patients are falling victim to antibiotic-resistant infections, including those like C. difficile which aren’t just resistant to conventional antibiotics but actually caused by them.  Thankfully, even when antibiotics fail to produce positive outcomes, ancient medicinal foods like honey may come to the rescue. 

A recent report published in the International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents reveals that an exotic honey may provide a powerful alternative to conventional antibiotics in treating one of the most common and deadly forms of infection in the United States today.

In a letter to the editor of the journal titled, “Successful treatment of persistent Clostridium difficile infection with manuka honey,”  two scientists from the Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Elisabeth-TweeSteden Hospital, Netherlends, discuss the therapeutic potential of a honey indigneous to Australia and New Zealand known as Manuka for treating Clostridium difficile infections.

Most serious Clostridicum difficile infections are caused by antibiotic-associated depopulation of the gut flora, leading to the overgrowth of what would otherwise be harmless bacteria in most cases. For instance, about 60-70% of newborns are assymptomatically colonized by Clostridium difficle. It is only when the microbiome is assaulted with broad spectrum antibiotics that this spore-forming, Gram positive bacteria can grow out of its natural bounds to cause serious problems. We’ve also reported previously about the role of the herbicide glyphosate (aka Roundup) in contributing to deadly Clostridium infections.

In the new study researchers describe the problem of Clostridium difficile infection as follows:

“Clostridium difficile-associated disease is an increasingly common health problem. C. difficile is a causative agent of antibiotic associated pseudomembranous colitis, antibiotic-associated colitis and antibiotic-associated diarrhoea [1]. C. difficile overgrowth usually occurs during antibiotic therapy as the normal gastrointestinal flora is disrupted. Discontinuation of antibiotics does not lead to symptomatic improvement, and new strains of the pathogen have a substantial failure rate after therapy cessation [2].”

C. difficile has become one of the most worrisome infections in the US, with an estimated 453,000 cases diagnosed each year, and 29,000 of those resulting in fatalities in 2011 alone. 1 2

The conventional medical establishment is beginning to wake up to the extent of the problem. Today, it is not uncommmon to hear news reports of how conventional antibiotics are completely impotent vis-a-vis the growing scourge of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The CDC, in fact, has recently labeled these nightmare bacteria,” and has warned that conventional medicine will soon be completely helpless to do anything to countermand these deadly infections.

Honey Comes To the Rescue

The new study may provides hope to the hopeless. If true, honey — one of the most ancient food-medicines known to man — may possess life-saving properties against antibiotic resistant infections. The study elaborates further:

“Our research team [5], as well as other clinical researchers [6], have performed in vitro studies demonstrating that unprocessed honeys have antibacterial activity against a range of pathogens, including C. difficile. Although the therapeutic mechanism of honey has not yet been fully elucidated, an antibacterial effect has been attributed to osmolarity, hydrogen peroxide generation and unidentified additional phytochemical components [7]. Furthermore, as well as antibacterial activity, honey has been shown to have an anti-inflammatory function [5]. Manuka (Leptospermum scoparium) honey has been graded using the ‘Unique Manuka Factor’ (UMF+), describing the strength of the hypothesized active substances. This grading system has been renamed methylglyoxal (MGO+), in which the effect is attributed to methylglyoxal, a stable antimicrobial compound shown to have an antibacterial action [8], including against bacteria with resistance to antibiotics [9–11].

We have featured the power of manuka to fight infections in previous articles, and in our honey and manuka honey database. Unlike normal honey, whose infection-fighting properties most likey derive from its hydrogen peroxide and probiotic content (contributed by bacteria whose lineage is trackable to an astounding ~ 80 million years ago), the Manuka plant provides additional healing properties (which some attribute to so-called Unique Manuka Factor’ (UMF+) that makes it one of the most extensively researched and useful honeys in medicine today.

The study also reported a remarkable case of a woman who was resistant to improvement after multitude of antibiotics undergoing full remission following the administration of Manuka honey:

“Here we describe, to the best of our knowledge, the first case of therapy-resistant CDI with complete resolution of symptoms following bowel lavage with diluted honey. A 71-year-old woman was seen at the Gastroenterology and Hepatology Outpatient Clinic of Elisabeth-TweeSteden Hospital (Tilburg, The Netherlands) presenting with frequent watery stools and faecal incontinence. Results of laboratory investigations and colonoscopy showed CDI. The patient was initially treated with vancomycin. However, diarrhoea persisted during treatment and concurrent therapy with metronidazole resulted in adverse side effects. Consequently, the patient was treated with fidaxomicin and following 10 days of antibiotic therapy she experienced a decrease in symptoms.

However, 1 day after cessation of therapy the patient exhibited a relapse of watery stools. The relapsing nature of the infection dictated continuous antibiotic therapy over months with relapse of diarrhoea immediately after cessation of fidaxomicin. Treatment with FMT was discussed; however, the patient refused this approach in therapy.

As an alternative, the patient was offered a therapeutic intervention with commercially available manuka honey with UMF 26+ and received a 300 mL endoscopic honey lavage with a solution of 8% honey, administered throughout the entire colon. Following initial lavage treatment the patient remained symptom free for 5 days before frequent watery stools re-occurred. A second lavage of the colon and terminal ileum was administered with 15% honey solution, after which the patient experienced complete cessation of watery stools and has remained symptom free for 12 months. Further stool analysis following treatment failed to identify C. difficile following the procedure. This case report demonstrates the possible therapeutic value of honey lavage as a treatment for therapy-resistant CDI, indicating the need for more clinical research into this matter.” [emphasis added]

Honey is one of nature’s most powerful healing foods, and has plenty of science to support it. On our honey research dashboard we have identified its potential therapeutic value in over 120 different disease states. Take a look at the first hand research here.

For additional research on natural substances with potential value in treating Clostridium infections visit the relevant research section here.

For additional research on over 100 natural substances that have been studied to fight antibiotic-resistant infections the relevant research section here.


References

Bolton RP, Tait SK, Dear PR, Losowsky MS. Asymptomatic neonatal colonisation by Clostridium difficile. Arch Dis Child 1984; 59: 466–472. | Article | PubMed | CAS |

2 Lessa, Fernanda C.; Mu, Yi; Bamberg, Wendy M.; Beldavs, Zintars G.; Dumyati, Ghinwa K.; Dunn, John R.; Farley, Monica M.; Holzbauer, Stacy M.; Meek, James I.; Phipps, Erin C.; Wilson, Lucy E.; Winston, Lisa G.; Cohen, Jessica A.; Limbago, Brandi M.; Fridkin, Scott K.; Gerding, Dale N.; McDonald, L. Clifford (26 February 2015). “Burden of Infection in the United States”. New England Journal of Medicine. 372 (9): 825–834. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa1408913PMID 25714160.

Butler, M; Olson, A; Drekonja, D; Shaukat, A; Schwehr, N; Shippee, N; Wilt, TJ (March 2016). “Early Diagnosis, Prevention, and Treatment of Clostridium difficile: Update”. AHRQ Comparative Effectiveness Reviews.: vi,1. PMID 27148613.

 

©  March 14, 2017 GreenMedInfo LLC. This work is reproduced and distributed with the permission of GreenMedInfo LLC. Want to learn more from GreenMedInfo? Sign up for the newsletter here http://www.greenmedinfo.com/greenmed/newsletter.

The post Exotic Honey Comes To Rescue In Fighting Deadly C. Difficile Infections appeared first on The Sleuth Journal.


Source: Alternative news journal

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