Alternative medicines are gaining in popularity. One thing people tend to forget though, is that while many alternative treatments and remedies for various annoying health issues are traditionally much milder than their pharmaceutical counterparts and therefore most likely cause much less or no side effects, they are nonetheless still chemically active within the body.
They still cause the body to react a certain way, and they must be treated with care. You also must make sure you are not mixing them with other medications that can have bad interactions with eachother.
For example, the natural antidepressant St. John’s Wort should never be taken with traditional antidepressants, specifically with SSRI reuptake inhibitors because of the negative side effects the two can cause together. That’s just one example, there are many others.
Now, when it comes to children and using natural remedies, one must exercise the same caution, but use even more due diligence since children have smaller, more susceptible bodies. Anything used on children can have a much broader effect, and this includes both traditional western medicines and alternative medicines, mind you.
Learn the recognize the usefulness of natural remedies, and when a traditional western medicine or treatment must be used. For example, if a child is experiencing something serious, traditional osteopathy must be consulted.
What about Echinacea?
For parents and for professionals who are around children all the time, this is a go-to for an immune system boost, but what is the echinacea plant? Echinacea is a beautiful purple coneflower, a perennial, that is lovely to look at. Not only is echinacea visually a treat to see, but it also may be useful in boosting our immune system and shortening the duration and severity of the common cold.
The herbal medicines derived from echinacea are prepared from the above ground parts of the plant and sometimes the root. Echinacea is herbally thought of as nature’s antibiotic and is believed to increase resistance to not only colds but also flu and ather infections. Scientific studies on echinacea vary widely on results of the infection fighting ability of this herb.
The studies seem to lack consistency. More clinical studies using the same species and dosage of echinacea at the first onset of symptoms consistently should be done to attain more clear cut conclusions.
Echinacea is commonly available at drugstores and health food stores. Sales of echinacea remain brisk for treatment of upper respiratory infections. As with any herbal product, there are warnings not to take this product if you are allergic to plants of the asteraceae or compasitae family such as ragweed, marigolds or daisies. Use of echinacea is not recommended for people with immune system conditions such as HIV or multiple sclerosis. Pregnant or breastfeeding women are also advised not to take echinacea.
Echinacea is available for use in the form of capsules, juice, extract, tincture or tea. As a topical treatment, echinacea is available in a semisolid preparaton for use to treat wounds or skin ulcers. Besides also taking an excellent Omega 3 Fatty Acid supplement, echinacea is probably a good idea to help boost immunity, especially in the winter months when germs seem to spread and people are more susceptible to actually contracting bugs and flus.
PMS can be a real drag for us women, especially those of us who experience it much more profoundly than others. Some women really don’t have PMS symptoms, but the majority of us do, the estimate today being about 98% of women reporting some sort of varying degrees of PMS symptoms before or during their period.
I for one feel as if I’m going crazy about one week prior to my period sometimes, and then after a two day period of extreme moodiness and emotional roller coastering, I’m ok for the few days actually leading up to my period. It’s a little odd probably, as most women experience it right before they start to menstruate, but every women is a little different when it comes to the hormones that control the monthly cycle.
Some doctors have poo poo’d the idea of PMS, saying that there is no real scientific proof that it should be happening. Hence, my distrust in much of the medical data that comes out these days.
Any woman who experience PMS will tell you it is as real as you can get, not imagined, and not psychosomatic, but a genuine, tangible change in how they feel, emotionally and physically.
Some women may get headaches or migraines before their period, others experience bloating and weight gain, cramping, moodiness, and hot flashes even. Some may experience anxiety or depression (see herbal remedies) ranging from mild to extreme, depending on the individual.
And within that individual’s life, their symptoms may even range from mild to severe as well. One month my symptoms may be severe, and the next they may be next to nothing – usually when that happens my actual flow is not much either.
Some of the things you can do to counter the many faces of PMS are the following. You can cut down on your sodium intake a few days before your period. This will help to relieve the bloating. You should probably try to cut down on caffeine, as caffeine can contribute to feelings of anxiety and moodiness.
Also, go easy on the sugar, as your blood sugar spikes and lows can contribute greatly to moodiness and being overly emotional. One thing that I’ve found helps me immensely during these few crucial days is doing yoga and working out. Yoga is notorious for helping to balance hormones, and being healthy for the endocrine system.
It helps relieve stress and also may help ease aches and pains associated with PMS, like back pain and cramping. Try taking an herbal mood enhancer as well, this can help lift any mild depression or moodiness you may be experiencing.
It’s important when picking out not only your cosmetic and beauty products if you’re a woman, but even your personal care stuff like body lotions, which most people use on either parts of their body or their entire body, fairly often, and things like deodorant, and sunscreens, to be aware of the lurking chemicals and contaminants that can be found in them.
These chemicals are not just something that sits on the skin and doesn’t cause any harm because you don’t ingest it orally. No, it actually STILL enters the blood stream, it’s just not as direct a route. In fact, if it’s something you use allover your body, once or twice every day, that just makes it all that much more important that it not have these chemicals in it.
Chemicals like parabens, aluminum, and even lead can be found in personal care and cosmetic items. Lead is particularly concerning since it is a known toxic heavy metal and has been pretty much banned from personal care products because it can cause poisoning of the system. It can build up in our bodies over time and cause health issues.
Aluminum is one that worries me, because it has been linked to everything from Alzheimers to breast cancer, and therefore, I have been using a natural, aluminum and triclosan free deodorant for years now. Any metal does not belong on the body, no matter what it is being used for – if you see any metal ingredients in a personal care product, run the other way.
Triclosan is a worrisome product additive as well, and it is found in a TON of antibacterial soaps and gels that are used to help keep germs off the hands. It has been linked to several illnesses, including a variety of cancers. The FDA is currently reviewing it’s safety in human use, but if I were you, I’d just throw any soaps or hand washes you have with this ingredient away in favor of a more chemical free formula.
You may think that you need chemicals to get clean, but you really don’t. I’ve been using natural soaps without sodium lauryl sulfate or any other harsh chemicals in them now for years, and my skin has never felt better. I also feel good about what I’m using, and don’t feel like I’m exposing my body to constant chemical overload.
Like almost anything, there are individual differences in how people react to different chemicals. Specific health conditions may expand the list of cosmetic products you may want to avoid or take advantage of.
Hair loss can be very upsetting and damaging to the self esteem for both men and women. One of the more innovative treatments for regrowth of hair is platelet rich plasma cell therapy. Be sure to check out two of our recommendations for hair loss which are very affordable, Profollica and Provillus as well.
This is a therapy using the body’s own stem cells and, from the article I read, is in an experimental stage as it was presented as a clinical study.
Platelet rich plasma cell therapy is called PRP cell therapy and in this instance, your own stem cells are used for the purpose of regrowth of hair. The benefits of PRP cell therapy are that it is drug free, safe and is done as an outpatient procedure.
The process of PRP cell therapy starts by putting the consumer on oral support for stem cells so they can elevate the number of stem cells in the patient’s bloodstream.
Next, blood is drawn and then is separated to obtain the stem cells and growth factors that will cause cell proliferation. Then, a topical anesthetic is used to numb the patient’s scalp and the growth formula is injected into their scalp.
The procedure takes about an hour. Within three months, hair growth is seen in balding and thinning spots. After the hair growth has started, a low level laser therapy is applied to optimize results.
Follow up exams are done at three months, six months, nine months and twelve months to monitor progress. At the follow up exams, the physicians measure hair count and hair diameter and take photographs.
After treatment, therapy is lasting instead of temporary. Therefore there is no need to repeat any procedures or for hair transplants or wigs. Stem cells have many potential uses in the medical field and the use of it for regeneration of hair growth is fascinating. The cost of this kind of treatment would be high, however if the hair loss is traumatic , it would be worth the price.
Stem cells occur naturally in our bodies and have the purpose of fighting disease and repairing damage. They originate in the bone marrow and then can be found circulating in the bloodstream for injury or when new cells are needed.
Medical technology is just starting to discover the many uses of stem cells for present and future purposes in regenerative and aesthetic medicine. Particularly important in relation to the study of stem cell use is the many applications for fighting diseases and the prolonging of the human life and functionality.
For those that want to regrow hair, there are a variety of viable herbal supplements for hair growth that make quite a difference in your hair regrowth and the health and resilience of the hair you have on your head.
Happiness is an elusive quality to quantify and look at from a strictly scientific point of view. The definition of happiness according to the dictionary is “a state of well being and contentment ; joy”.
When looking at surrounding circumstances that we equate with happiness, we think of wealth, health and youth. Yet, none of these factors equate into happiness.
So, what does bring joy and happiness into most people’s lives? A social network of family ties and long lasting quality friendships is one key ingredient to happiness and also key to avoiding depression.
An attitude of gratitude is always consistent with a more fulfilling joyful life. The old adage of counting your blessings every day really does make you feel more contented and helps you find pleasure in the simpler little joys of life.
Always longing for more material possessions will leave you feeling short changed in life and will lead to envy and resentment towards those that possess more than you do. Money, by itself, does not lead to happiness.
As long as your basic needs are met, such as food, shelter and clothing, any added material goods or wealth will not add to your level of happiness. Generally speaking, people who volunteer and use their talents for the greater good of their community will tend to be happier types of people.
An effort to be kind in your words and deeds will pave the way to feelings of contentment and peace. Stress is a constant factor in all of our lives and none of us can escape this fact of life whether we are a happy or a gloomy type of a person.
Finding creative ways of dealing with stress through spirituality, exercise, yoga, hobbies and even humor can help to keep you more positive and cope better.Happiness does go hand in hand with a stronger immune system and a longer life expectancy.
A lot of the reasoning scientifically for this fact is that happy people tend to have better health habits and take better care of themselves. A happy person is more likely to exercise and less likely to engage in habits such as smoking or drinking excessively.
Emphasizing positive social interactions can help to keep a person happy. Learning to forgive quickly and easily will help you to better cope with anger and to move on with your life. Holding grudges and hanging on to your anger will only make you an unhappy person.
Spending as much time as possible with family and friends is mentally beneficial for your happiness. Making it a point to thank people for any help or kindness will make your life more pleasant. Bad things do occur in everyone’s life at some time.
The loss of a loved one or any major setback emotionally or financially will cause anyone to be unhappy for some time. However, if you are an optimistic happier type of person, you will be more likely to move through these rough patches in life with better coping skills in place.
By now you have been scared straight by your doctor or friends into eating a low sodium diet. You no longer eat seasoned foods because you are afraid that “ your blood pressure” will go up. Someone has to remind you of the last time you ate a meal that you enjoyed. Why? All because you have heard that salt causes high blood pressure. Yet, salt is an essential nutrient that contains sodium and chloride? The sodium helps the body with regulating nerves and muscle functions. Chloride is a chemical the human body needs for metabolism (a process where food is transformed into energy). It also helps keep the body’s acid base balance. So far it does not sound like salt is as big a monster as people have made it out to be.
One common instrument that farmers put out for their cows are salt licks. They are very important in providing nutrients in the growth of the cow, and cows or other animals don’t tend to struggle with high blood pressure. The reason is that the cow will take from the salt lick until it feels that it is satisfied and has had enough. Much of the time, this same principle can be applied by humans. Moreover, you can salt your food to taste and nothing will happen to you because high blood pressure is not caused by salt intake. It is rather a deficiency in a certain mineral. Japanese people who live years longer than Americans and have half the cancer rate and heart diseases, eat 12 grams of salt daily which is three times the amount of Americans.
The reality is that table salt is the big issue NOT natural sea salt. When you are told that salt causes high blood pressure they really mean that table salt causes the ailment. Sea salt is very natural and contains essential nutrients necessary for the body. Table salt is a mixture of several different caking agents and unhealthy ingredients.
The Journal of American Medical Association has yet more concrete information that salt is not the causer of high blood pressure. A cardiology study showed that if you have high blood pressure and restrict salt, you will not see any real benefit. Only two to five percent of those that restricted the salt seen any benefit. He went on to say that there is no need to get paranoid about salt because there is no proof that it causes blood pressure problems. Researchers believe that problem is that the government makes general recommendations to the entire country when the information is more than likely applicable to a select few. Several doctors have stated that the underlying cause of high blood pressure is the lack of the nutrient calcium and eating bad foods, whether processed or fried.
I feel like maybe I take too many supplements. And I don’t even take a whole lot. I know some people take ten or more a day, and that may seem excessive. My paltry 3-4 a day probably pale in comparison. Over half the US population takes supplements according to an earlier story we reported on, so either it’s mass hysteria, or supplements really do improve our lives.
But I do notice that when I stop taking certain supplements, such as vitamin C or my antioxidant blends of astaxanthin or other antioxidant vitamin blends, I either get sick or I start to notice my skin doesn’t look so great or that I’m just feeling as healthy as I normally do. This shows me that supplements really do make a difference.
No one can tell me that my vitamin D supplement doesn’t boost my immunity in an extreme way when a cold or flu is going around the office and somehow I miss it for the tenth time. Vitamin D is also used for cancer prevention. Or when I do finally get a bug, the strain is so muted and not even that serious that I barely notice I’m sick before I’m getting over it.
How about vitamin C supplements like chewable vitamin C tablets or even products like Emergen-C? Lots of people swear by this vitamin to help get them through the winter cold and flu season around here in Ohio where I live since this season tends to be long as the winters are.
Other antioxidants are things like acai berry extract, cranberry extract, garlic, vitamin e, vitamin k, and folate. Many women take these to help get them through pregnancy, and men take them to boost immunity and overall health, brain and body function, and even to boost their appearance to a healthy, vibrant one and increase longevity.
There all kinds of ways of adding antioxidants to your diet. Lemon water drinkers swear that they see a new clarity to their skin, and this may be due to the high vitamin and antioxidant value of lemon juice that is fresh squeezed. White tea is another great option.
Even though some in the medical establishment would poo-poo many supplements, there still is the question “why would so many people be totally deluded that a supplement helps them so much? There’s a difference between widespread delusion and downright physical evidence, which I feel has displayed itself over and over with the way people feel about their supplements.
Early in October, Ohio started making moves to ban Kratom, a natural supplement said to have opioid properties and some stimulant-like effects. As of right now, little is known of kratom’s worth or safety as a therapeutic agent, but in February of 2018, the United States’ Food and Drug Administration stated that there is no evidence that kratom is safe or effective for treating any condition.
Individual users, however, would say otherwise. Some people take the supplement for managing chronic pain, for treating opioid withdrawal symptoms, or—more recently—for recreational purposes. The onset of effects is said to begin within five to ten minutes of ingestion and it lasts for two to five hours. Common minor side effects include nausea, vomiting, and constipation, while more severe side effects include respiratory depression and addiction.
There is growing international concern about a possible threat to public health from kratom use. In some jurisdictions—such as Ohio—its sale and importation have been severely restricted. In August of 2016, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced its intention to place the active materials in the kratom plant into Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act as a warning. A year later, in 2017, the FDA cited serious concerns over the marketing and effects associated with the use of kratom. In April of 2018, the FDA issued the first mandatory recall in its history (over concerns of salmonella)
Most recently, the Ohio Board of Pharmacy voted to classify kratom as a Schedule I controlled substance—alongside heroin, LDS, and other dangerous drugs. The pharmacy board considers kratom a “psychoactive plant” that can cause hallucinations, psychosis, seizures, and death. However, there has been heavy push-back from the small but passionate community of kratom users. The substance has been used as a pain reliever and stimulant for centuries, and it is a common “cure” for pain, addiction, anxiety, and depression.
While the effects and implications of kratom and its ban are not fully known, do your research before ingesting this substance to ensure it is the product you want to use.
Hundreds of herbal remedies have been studied as treatments for anxiety, but some rise above the rest as more useful or popular than others. Here are a few popular herbal anxiety treatments and what you need to know before trying them out.
While kava appeared to be a fairly promising treatment for anxiety, reports of serious liver damage cause the FDA to issue warnings about the use of dietary supplements containing the substance. While the initial reports have been questioned, use caution and involve your doctor if you are considering kava products.
Several small clinical trials suggest that passion flower may help with anxiety. In many commercial products, passion flower is combined with other herbs, making it difficult to distinguish the unique qualities of each herb. The flower itself is generally considered safe—mild side effects include drowsiness, dizziness, and confusion.
In some studies, those who used valerian reported less anxiety and stress. In other studies, people reported no benefit. The substance is generally considered to be safe, so give it a go if you’re curious.
Limited data show that short-term chamomile use is generally considered to be safe and effective in reducing symptoms of anxiety. However, use this substance with caution if you are on blood-thinning drugs.
Some evidence suggests that oral lavender or lavender aromatherapy can reduce anxiety, but this evidence is preliminary and limited.
Most Americans are more familiar with herbs within a culinary context. However, herbs have been recognized as health aids and solutions for thousands of years. You may be familiar with a few—specific types of tea have been making their way into commercial supermarkets, and the juicing trend has brought several important herbs into the spotlight. Herbs are incredibly accessible, fun to use, and a great way to experiment with homeopathy. Here are ten herbs you can use as medicine.
Thyme: Type is excellent for respiratory issues. Thymol, its most notable chemical compound, is recognized for its antiseptic abilities. Plus, it tastes pretty great when baked into bread.
Echinacea: Yes, this is actually an herb! You may have taken Echinacea supplements as a kid (raise your hand if your mom shopped at Whole Foods before it was cool), but the benefits of this power plant go beyond tasty gummies. This herb can alleviate joint pain and improve the immune system.
Chamomile: Popular in tea, chamomile is a popular remedy for curing upset stomachs. It can also be used to solve problems related to sleep, morning sickness, bloating, and other skin problems.
Dandelion: This flowering plant is best known for its use as a detoxifying agent for the liver and kidney. Dandelion has also been used to treat infections, minimize swelling, balance blood sugar, and improve pancreas function.
Sage: This herb is excellent for disinfecting sores, healing ulcers, and curing coughs.
Peppermint: One of the tastiest herbs on this lit, peppermint is used to alleviate dyspepsia, gastritis, intestinal colic, and GI tract issues. Essentially, it will sooth your stomach.
Holy basic: This plant has anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. Plus, it tastes excellent with tomatoes.
Lemon balm: This herb is incredibly easy to grow. It is known for its anti-viral and relaxing properties and is often used to treat upset stomachs, bad breath, and sores.
Aloe vera: If you’re using skin treatments without aloe vera, you’re doing something wrong. This herb is used widely to heal wounds and various skin and hair conditions. When taken orally, aloe can act as a laxative.
Bergamot: Essential oils made from Bergamot can help treat high fever and intestinal worms. It can also be used for aromatherapy and act as a tonic for the nervous system, alleviating stress, anxiety, tension, and headache.