Monday, January 27, 2014

24-Hour Flu Treatment

Reposted from Wellness Mama
http://wellnessmama.com/207/24-hour-flu-treatment/

UPDATE: This post was three years old and while we would still use these treatments if we got the flu, we haven’t gotten sick during that time. We use a preventative regimen of supplements, lifestyle factors an sleep/stress reduction. Here are the supplements we take regularly to help boost immune health.

We had our first bout with the flu this week, and from my experience, all the hype is very overblown. In the course of 3 days my husband and both kids have contracted, and gotten over the flu (it is possibly, but not confirmed as the H1N1 strain). They all had the three common symptoms being listed for this years flu:
  • Fever
  • Body Ache
  • Respiratory Symptoms
All three got over their flu within 24 hours, both kids fully recovering within 12. I figured I would share my remedies in case anyone else is interested.
What we did not do: swine flu shots, seasonal flu shots, Tamiflu, antibiotics, visit the ER, Tylenol, fever reducers, etc.
What we did do:
  • Hydration-At the onset of first symptoms, they all started drinking a lot of water, up to a gallon and a half that day in my husband’s case
  • Hot Tea and tons of Homemade Bone Broth-As hot liquids have been shown to stimulate the immune system and stop proliferation of the flu virus, they all continuously sipped hot herbal teas, homemade chicken soup and hot water with lemon juice and honey.
  • Vitamin C- More and more evidence is showing that vitamin C is the ascorbic acid form can battle the flu and other viruses better than medication. For the kids, I started with 500 mg chewable doses and continued until they reached bowel tolerance (the point that it causes diarrhea) and then reduced to half doses every two hours. This amounted to about 3,000 mg total by the time they were symptom free. I continued 500 mg a day for several days to increase immunity. For my husband, I gave 500 mg every hour until bowel tolerance and half doses every hour after. This amounted to almost 5,000 mg for him by the time he was symptom free.
  • Oil of Oregano-one drop in water every couple of hours is a powerful antiviral and antibiotic (not for use during pregnancy)
  • Homemade elderberry syrup-1 Tablespoon every hour for husband, 1/2 Tablespoon every hour for kids. This is very similar to Sambucol, which is sold nationwide.
  • Organic Apple Cider Vinegar with “the mother”-One Tablespoon in 8 oz water every three hours. This alkalizes the body and kills any yeast that can be feeding infection.
  • Removal of carbs and sugars from the diet until completely well-At the first symptom, all three were pulled off of carbs and sugars, which can feed infection. If hungry, they ate tons of soup, healthy forms of protein, vegetables, and vegetable smoothies.
  • Lot’s of rest-This one is pretty obvious during any illness
I purposely did not give fever reducing medicine to any of them. As with any illness, I carefully monitor temperature and don’t make any effort to bring it down until it hits at least 104 (which never happens for us). For anything less than 104, I simply use the regimen above. Fever is the body’s natural response to illness and is a sign that the infection is being fought by the body. Reducing the fever really is not necessary unless it gets to a dangerous level. Both kids had fevers in the 103 range, and without the aid of Tylenol or medication, fought the infection and kicked the fever in 12 hours.

Hopefully none of you will deal with any illness this year, but if you do, maybe some of this may help you too.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

You've Got A Cold, Now What?

Reposted from Life Extension
http://blog.lef.org/2013/01/got-cold-now-what.html?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=normal

Maylin Rodriguez-Paez, RN

No one likes having a cold. It can make you feel achy, congested, sleepy, and just plain miserable. But wouldn’t knowing that you could shorten your misery make it more tolerable?

If you’ve read our previous blogs, you’ll know we always emphasize the importance of cold prevention. But in our imperfect world, even the most vigorous of nutrition enthusiasts and supplement takers still get sick … once in a while.

So we’ve done a little investigative work and came up with several ways to help you bounce back to your healthy self in no time.

Why? Because we don’t want you to suffer any longer than you have to, and we’re pretty sure that you don’t want to either.

The Basics of Cold Busting: Rest and Fluids

When trying to stop a cold in its tracks, getting enough fluids and rest should be a top priority.

Drinking fluids helps to loosen mucus and prevent dehydration, which is more likely when you have a cold. A cold may also come along with a fever, which can also decrease your fluid stores.

Rest provides the energy your body needs to fight illness. Pretty straightforward, right?

As such, hitting the gym while you’re sick can actually lower your defenses. So do yourself a favor and stay at home when you’re sick. You have our full permission!

Enhance Your Sleep and Immune System with Melatonin

Sleep recharges your immune system. But let’s be honest. It can sometimes be hard to sleep when you’re ill. Luckily, there are safe aids like melatonin that can help with that.

Not only does melatonin help you sleep,1 it also offers immune-boosting effects. Studies show it activates several members of the immune system, including T-cells and natural killer cells,2 which play crucial roles in warding off pathogens.

To optimize the immune-boosting effects of melatonin while you’re sick, higher dosages such as 3 mg/day are typically suggested.

Fight Nasal Congestion with Bromelain, Saline Nasal Rinses, and NAC

Perhaps one of the most annoying symptoms of the cold is nasal congestion. It makes breathing and even sleeping difficult.

But before you reach for those over-the-counter decongestants, please think twice. Some of them increase your blood pressure and can cause a rebound effect, making you even more stuffed-up than before.

If you want to go the safe, natural route, consider these options:

1. Bromelain

Bromelain, a mixture of enzymes found in the pineapple stem3, has been clinically shown to ease nasal and sinus inflammation. In a clinical trial, 85% of people with sinusitis showed complete resolution of the inflammation in the nasal mucosa while taking it.4

Bromelain is also effective at thinning nasal secretions and inhibiting inflammatory compounds that can make cold symptoms worse.

For optimal results, try an enteric-coated version on an empty stomach.

2. Sterile saline rinse, 3% concentration

One of the best ways to decongest is by irrigating your nose with sterile saline. It flushes out mucus and reduces histamine, a chemical that seriously increases mucus production, in your nasal tract.5
Consider a 3% sterile saline solution. It may sting a little, but the salt helps pull water out of your nasal passages, keeping down inflammation. This often provides quick relief.

3. NAC

NAC (N-acetyl cysteine) is an underestimated but powerful antioxidant. A derivative of the amino acid cysteine, NAC boosts internal defenses in several ways. It inhibits viral replication and reduces inflammation6 — two factors that are essential while battling a cold.

NAC is no stranger to conventional medicine. Doctors actually administer it to cystic fibrosis patients to help thin out mucus. So if you need to decongest yourself, give it a shot.

Shorten and Alleviate Cold Symptoms with Proven Nutrients

To date, we don’t have a cure for the common cold, nor is there a medication that will shorten its duration.

Fortunately, Mother Nature has a few tricks up her sleeve, which can be very helpful in diminishing your symptoms.

The following ingredients have been clinically shown to shorten the duration or alleviate the symptoms of a respiratory infection. Take your pick, as we’ve included several to choose from:

  • Garlic (Standardized to contain allicin)7
  • Probiotics (Look for Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium strains)8
  • NAC9
  • Vitamin C10
  • Zinc gluconate10
Consider taking any of these (or a combination of them) until you feel like yourself again. Hopefully that will be sooner than later!

The Bottom Line:

Ideally, you want to take measures to prevent the common cold, but even the healthiest people catch a cold once in a while. So, if you find yourself sniffling and sneezing, give these suggestions a try!

Have any of these (or any other) natural remedies worked for you? Please share your experiences in the comments.

References:

  1. Curr Med Res Opin. 2011 Jan;27(1):87-98.
  2. J Physiol Pharmacol. 2007 Dec;58 Suppl 6:115-24.
  3. Clin Immunol. 2008 Jul;128(1):66-74.
  4. Altern Med Rev. 2006 Sep;11(3):196-207.
  5. Chest. 1994 Nov;106(5):1487-92.
  6. Biochem Pharmacol. Feb 1;79(3):413-20.
  7. Adv Ther. 2001 Jul-Aug;18(4):189-93.
  8. Pediatr Int. 2012 Oct;54(5):682-7.
  9. Eur Respir J. 1997 Jul;10(7):1535-41.
  10. Altern Med Rev. 2007 Mar;12(1):25-48.

Friday, January 24, 2014

How To Eat When Battling Cancer

Reposted from Life Extension
http://blog.lef.org/2013/10/how-to-eat-when-battling-cancer.html?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=normal

Maylin Rodriguez-Paez, RN

A cancer diagnosis is probably just about the scariest news anyone could ever receive in their life. It can also be very confusing. There’s tons of information to weed through and it’s very easy to become overwhelmed, scared, and discouraged.

As such, here’s an attempt to simplify the basics of a critical component for anyone following a cancer diagnosis — your nutrition.

A healthy, nutritious diet is really important when you’re being treated for cancer. It can make a big impact on the outcome of your treatments and your quality of life. So, it’s essential that you take your diet very seriously during this time.

If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with cancer, we really hope this helps to take some of the guesswork out of the equation.

Eat Fresh Vegetables

According to research, eating fruits and vegetables could lower one’s overall risk of dying from cancer.1 So, they should form the foundation of your diet. In particular, pay extra attention to cruciferous vegetables (e.g. kale, broccoli, radishes, and cauliflower). They’re notable for their anti-cancer properties.

Specific compounds in cruciferous vegetables have been shown to kill ovarian, prostate, lung, and breast cancer cells in culture.2-5 In one study, eating broccoli was associated with an increased rate of survival in bladder cancer patients.6

Avoid Sugar

Avoid refined carbohydrates, sweets, and foods with added sweeteners. They contain simple carbohydrates which are quickly broken down into sugar.

Cancer cells thrive on sugar, and insulin (a glucose-transporter) is a growth factor for many tumors.7 In animal studies, low carb diets have been associated with slowed tumor growth.8

Be careful with juicing. It’s a great way to incorporate more vegetables into your diet, but it can also be a source of excess sugar (if you’re juicing fruits). Eat whole fruits instead.

Cut Back on Inflammatory Foods

Cancer is inflammatory in nature. In fact, it’s believed that 95% of cancers involve nuclear factor-kappa B, a key orchestrator of inflammation. 9
Cut back on animal products (meat, chicken, and dairy). They’re a source of omega-6 fatty acids and saturated fats. In the body, they’re processed and converted into 5-LOX, an inflammatory enzyme linked to cancer development and proliferation.10

Eat anti-inflammatory foods instead. Flax seeds, chia seeds, tart cherries, olives, soy, seaweed, dark fruits, berries, cold water fish, green tea, ginger, and nuts are just to name a few. And let’s not forget, omega-3s which help to ease inflammation.

Eat Immune Boosting Foods

Incorporate immune boosting foods into your diet. These include garlic, onions, ginger, green tea, yogurt, oats, barley, and mushrooms.

Maitake and shiitake mushrooms, for example, contain beta glucans and other polysaccharides with immune stimulating properties. These natural compounds activate key players in the immune system to prevent the proliferation and spread of cancer cells.11

Add Turmeric to Your Dishes

Add turmeric to your dishes. Not only does it add color, it adds nutritional value as well. Its key ingredient, curcumin, has been shown to fight cancer in a number of studies.12

Clinical trials are in the early stages, but so far compelling results have been seen for cancers of the breast, uterus, cervix, prostate, and GI tract.

Take Your Supplements

A variety of supplements may help during cancer treatments. For example, higher vitamin D levels have been associated with higher rates of survival among colorectal cancer patients.13
However, since supplementation can be tricky for cancer patients, it’s best to receive personalized suggestions before starting a new program. And just in case you didn't already know, we have a team of oncology health advisors on staff that can help with just that.

If you’d like some guidance, consider giving them a call at 1-800-226-2370 (yes, it's free)!

References:

  1. Am J Epidemiol. 2004 Dec 15;160(12):1223-33.
  2. Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2007 Oct;86(10):1263-8.
  3. PLoS One. 2012;7(10):e47186.
  4. J Nat Prod. 2008 Nov;71(11):1911-4.
  5. Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2004 Sep;229(8):835-42.
  6. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2010 Jul;19(7):1806-11.
  7. Integr Cancer Ther. 2003 Dec;2(4):315-29.
  8. Prostate. 2013 Apr;73(5):449-54.
  9. Mol Cell Biochem. 2010 Mar;336(1-2):25-37.
  10. Cancer Metastasis Rev. 2007 Dec;26(3-4):503-24.
  11. Int Immunopharmacol. 2007 Jun;7(6):701-24.
  12. Front Biosci (Schol Ed). 2012 Jan 1;4:335-55.
  13. Br J Cancer. 2009 Sep 15;101(6):916-23.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Can Niacin Fight Heart Disease?

Reposted from Life Extension
http://blog.lef.org/2013/06/can-niacin-fight-heart-disease.html?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=normal

by Maylin Rodriguez-Paez, RN

Niacin is one of the best kept secrets in the field of medicine, and we’d like to help put an end to that as soon as we possibly can.

Why? Because higher doses of niacin have been shown to maintain blood lipids better than conventional drugs and even help prevent heart attacks.

Below, we’ll explain why niacin is just about one of the best supplements you can take for your heart.

Niacin Increases HDL and Changes LDL Particle Size

Niacin is best known for its ability to increase HDL, a lipoprotein that carries excess cholesterol out of arteries. Having healthy HDL levels is very important for optimal heart health.

In research studies, mean doses of 2.25 grams have been shown to increase HDL by as much as 35%.1 This is quite impressive since most traditional drugs aren’t as effective in raising HDL levels.

Niacin also favorably changes the size of LDL particles. LDL is a lipoprotein that carries cholesterol to the heart and arteries. These particles come in different sizes and each carry a different risk for heart disease.

Larger more buoyant LDL particles are more favorable than smaller particles, which can easily penetrate arterial walls and contribute to plaque. Niacin supports the production of large buoyant LDL particles.2 Niacin also lowers triglycerides. In one study, 1 gram of niacin taken three times a day reduced levels by an average of 26%.3

Niacin Prevents Heart Attacks

In a study called the Coronary Drug Project, taking niacin was found to reduce the incidence of non-fatal heart attacks and strokes by 27% and 26% respectively.3, 4 The participants studied were heart attack survivors.

These results make sense when you take into account that niacin works in several ways to help you maintain a healthy cardiovascular system.

Now ask yourself this: Is there any drug on the market that does all of the things we’ve mentioned above?

Niacin Precautions

Is niacin therapy right for you? We can’t determine that but your doctor can. Higher doses may be appropriate for people with lipid disorders or heart disease.

Are higher doses of niacin dangerous? If taken properly, they shouldn’t be … but it’s certainly not risk free. Again, ask your doctor!

One of the potential side effects of therapy is increased liver enzymes (especially the slow-release preparations). Make sure you monitor your liver function with your doctor.

Higher doses may cause an uncomfortable reaction called the niacin flush. A person may experience itching, redness, and hot flashes. Some describe it like “being on fire.”

Although the niacin flush may seem like a horrible allergic reaction, it really isn’t. It’s caused when your blood vessels dilate and send blood rushing to the surface of your skin.

This reaction is actually the main reason people stop niacin therapy, and we’d rather not have it happen to you.

How to Avoid the “Niacin Flush”

Here are a couple of tips to prevent the niacin flush from happening:

  • Take a full glass of water with your dose and avoid spicy foods.
  • Start therapy with lower doses of niacin (250 mg) and work your way up after a period of several weeks to higher doses. This helps your body get used to the niacin.
  • Take quercetin several hours before taking the niacin or take a baby aspirin prior to use. Both of them can help to minimize the flush.

What About You?

Has niacin therapy ever worked for you? What did you think of niacin before reading this post? Please share your thoughts in the comments!

References:

  1. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2000 Mar.;35(3):640-646.
  2. Curr Vasc Pharmacol. 2010 Nov.;8(6):820-830.
  3. J Am Coll Cardiol. 1986;8(6):1245-1255.
  4. J. Cardiovasc Pharmacol Ther. 2010 Jun.;15(2):158-166.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

YOGURT: A Spoonful of Powerful Nutritional Value

Reposted from Life Extension
http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2012/dec2012_Yogurt-Powerful-Nutritional-Value_01.htm?utm_campaign=normal&utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social

By William Gamonski
YOGURT: A Spoonful of Powerful Nutritional Value  
While yogurt is widely known for its healthy probiotics, it also boasts an impressive nutritional profile that makes it a frontrunner for the ultimate super food. Yogurt's health-promoting properties ward off a variety of health conditions, from gastrointestinal disorders to obesity to gum disease.

Yogurt's History

The origin of yogurt remains uncertain, but it was documented as a favorite food of the conqueror Genghis Khan and his army in the 13th century. While yogurt has been a dietary mainstay across the Middle East, Asia, Russia, and Bulgaria for thousands of years, its health benefits only became apparent during the 20th century, due to the research performed by Dr. Elie Metchnikoff on lactic acid bacteria. Yogurt is becoming increasingly popular around the world, particularly in the United States, as well as Turkey, India, and Greece, where it's being used for culinary purposes.1

Supporting Gastrointestinal Health

Yogurt is produced by fermenting milk with bacterial starter cultures Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus. Other live cultures such as Lactobacillus casei and Lactobacillus acidophilus are often added during the process.1 These beneficial bacteria, known as probiotics, might improve digestion and prevent common gastrointestinal disorders.
Lactose intolerance refers to the inability to digest the sugar lactose in dairy products due to a deficiency in the enzyme lactase. Yogurt shows promise as an alternative to milk for individuals suffering from this condition, according to research reported in the New England Journal of Medicine.2 Scientists found that lactose intolerant subjects consuming 18 grams of lactose from yogurt digested and absorbed the lactose more efficiently than those who received the same amount of lactose from milk. This improved toleration resulted in less diarrhea and other gastrointestinal symptoms in the yogurt group.
Scientists believe that probiotics in yogurt boost the release of beta-galactosidase, an enzyme that enhances lactose digestion.3
It is estimated that one out of every four people experience antibiotic-associated diarrhea.4 Scientists at Indiana University School of Medicine investigated whether the healthy bacteria in yogurt would help prevent the condition. A group of 202 hospitalized patients receiving oral or intravenous antibiotics were randomly selected for 8 ounces of yogurt, or no yogurt, for eight days. The frequency of diarrhea was assessed during that time period. The results showed a 24% reduction in the incidence of diarrhea in the yogurt group, compared with a 12% decrease in the control group.5
Selecting and Storing Yogurt1
Selecting and Storing Yogurt  
Look for "active cultures" or "living yogurt cultures" on the label. This indicates the presence of gut friendly bacteria.
Avoid yogurt with flavorings and sweeteners.
Opt for the plain version instead of fruit-filled yogurt as the latter usually contains added sugar.
Store in the refrigerator after purchase. Yogurt stays fresh until one week after expiration date if unopened.

Anti-Obesity Effects

Numerous studies have demonstrated the obesity fighting potential of yogurt. In animal research, scientists found that mice supplemented with yogurt powder while on a moderate-fat diet had significantly lower weight gain than control mice. This was attributed to increased lipid levels in the feces of the supplemented group, suggesting that yogurt works by reducing fat absorption in the small intestine.6
These favorable effects extend to humans as well. Individuals with the highest intake of dairy foods, such as yogurt, lowered their risk of weight gain by 67% over a 10-year period compared to those with the lowest intakes, according to research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.7 Furthermore, researchers at Harvard School of Public Health studied the relationship between specific foods and long-term weight gain in more than 120,000 men and women.8 After analyzing data from the 20 year follow-up, researchers concluded that yogurt was the food most associated with keeping weight off, even more so than fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
To determine whether yogurt consumption can enhance weight loss in humans, researchers at the University of Tennessee randomly assigned 34 healthy obese participants 18 ounces of fat-free yogurt or one serving of dairy daily for 12 weeks.9 Both groups adhered to a similar calorie-reduced diet. At the end of the study, the yogurt group experienced an average weight loss of 14 pounds, compared to 11 pounds in the control group. Additionally, those who consumed yogurt retained 31% more muscle mass and lost 81% more abdominal fat, which was reflected in a reduction of over 1.5 inches from the waist. By comparison, the control group lost 0.23 inches. This improvement is noteworthy since visceral fat accumulation has been associated with increased risk for cardiovascular disease and type II diabetes.10
Existing data indicates that calcium is the main component in yogurt responsible for its anti-obesity benefits. Although calcium may operate through multiple mechanisms, one mode of action relates to its ability to suppress the release of the hormone calcitriol, thereby halting fat storage and promoting fat break down.11

Cancer Defense

Emerging evidence reveals that the addition of yogurt to your diet can protect against the development of several types of cancer, including those of the colon, bladder, and breast. In a study published in the International Journal of Cancer, a 35% colon cancer reduction risk was found in those consuming the highest amount of yogurt compared to those with the lowest amount in more than 45,000 men and women over a 12-year period.12
Swedish scientists uncovered a strong association between yogurt intake and bladder cancer risk among 80,000 men and women. After 9-years of follow-up, findings showed a 38% lower risk of the disease in those who regularly consumed yogurt versus those who ate little or none.13
In another study, researchers evaluated the intake of fermented dairy products in 133 breast cancer patients and 289 controls. They discovered that yogurt had a protective effect against breast cancer, as the highest intake was associated with a 37% reduction risk.14
Nutritional Value of Yogurt, One Cup1
Nutritional Value of Yogurt, OneCup  
NutrientsAmountyDV(%)
Iodine87.20 mcg58.1%
Calcium448.30 mg44.8%
Phosphorus352.80 mg35.2%
Vitamin B20.52 mg30.5%
Protein12.80 g25.7%
Vitamin B121.37 mcg22.8%
Potassium573.30 mg16.4%
Zinc2.18 mg14.5%

Combating Heart Disease

Other research has shown that yogurt offers powerful cardiovascular support. In a study involving more than 1,000 women aged 70 and older, those with the highest yogurt intake not only had higher HDL cholesterol levels, but also significantly lower carotid artery thickness, a measurement of atherosclerosis, than those with the lowest intake.15
A study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition further confirmed the HDL raising effects of yogurt in human volunteers. After consuming 10.5 ounces of full-fat yogurt daily for 21 weeks, participants experienced an increase of nearly 12 mg/dL in HDL cholesterol levels without any change in LDL levels. This in turn favorably altered their LDL/HDL cholesterol ratio by over 23%.16

Fight Gum Disease

Fight Gum Disease  
The chronic growth of bacteria in the mouth leads to inflammation and damages the gums and bones that support the teeth. This condition, known as periodontal disease or gum disease, has been associated with stroke and heart disease.17 Japanese researchers found that a daily intake of at least 2 ounces of yogurt among men and women was linked with a decreased risk of developing deep probing depth by 60% and clinical attachment loss by 50%, both periodontal disease parameters.18

Summary

Incorporating yogurt into your diet offers healthy probiotics and other nutrients that may help protect against gastrointestinal disorders, cancer, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and gum disease. Please remember that yogurt is not a dietary supplement, and should be used to replace constituents of your diet that may be less healthy such as ice cream. If one intentionally added yogurt without removing another food, then the excess calories might counteract the beneficial effects of the yogurt.
If you have any questions on the scientific content of this article, please call a Life Extension® Health Advisor at 1-866-864-3027.

References

1. Available at: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=124 Accessed September 14, 2012.
2. Kolars JC, Levitt MD, Aouji M, Savaiano DA. Yogurt-an autodigesting source of lactose. N Engl J Med. 1984 Jan;310(1):1-3.
3. Rosado JL. Yogurt as a source of lactose autodigestion. Rev Invest Clin. 1996 Nov;48:63-6.
4. Doron SI, Hibberd PL, Gorbach SL. Probiotics for prevention of antibiotic-associated diarrhea. J Clin Gastroenterol. 2008 Jul;42:58-63.
5. Beniwal RS, Arena VC, Thomas L, et al. A randomized trial of yogurt for prevention of antibiotic-associated diarrhea. Dig Dis Sci. 2003 Oct;48(10):2077-82.
6. Johnson MS, Jumbo-Lucioni P, Watts AJ, Allison DB, Nagy TR. Effect of dairy supplementation on body composition and insulin resistance in mice. Nutrition. 2007 Nov-Dec;23(11-12):836-43.
7. Pereira MA, Jacobs DR Jr, Van Horn L, Slattery ML, Kartashov AL, Ludwig DS. Dairyconsumption, obesity and the insulin resistance syndrome in young adults: the CARDIA study. JAMA. 2002 Apr;287(16):2081-9.
8. Mozzaffarian D, Hao T, Rimm EB, Willet WC, Hu FB. Changes in diet and lifestyle and long- term weight gain in women and men. N Engl J Med. 2011 Jun;364(25):2392-404.
9. Zemel MB, Richards J, Mathis S, Milstead A, Gebhardt L, Silva E. Dairy augmentation of total and central fat loss in obese subjects. Int J Obes. 2005 Apr;29(4):391-7.
10. Hamdy O, Porramatikul S, Al-Ozairi E. Metabolic obesity: the paradox between visceral and subcutaneous fat. Curr Diabetes Rev. 2006 Nov;2(4):367-73.
11. Zemel MB. Regulation of adiposity and obesity risk by dietary calcium: mechanisms and implications. J Am Coll Nutr. 2002 Apr;21(2):146S-151S.
12. Pala V, Sieri S, Berrino F, et al. Yogurt consumption and risk of colorectal cancer in the Italian European prospective investigation into cancer and nutrition cohort. Int J Cancer. 2011 Dec;129(11):2712-9.
13. Larsson SC, Andersson SO, Johansson JE, Wolk A. Cultured milk, yogurt, and dairy intake in relationship to bladder cancer risk in a prospective study of Swedish women and men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2008 Oct;88(4):1083-7.
14. Veer PV, Dekker JM, Lamers JWJ. Consumption of fermented milk products and breast cancer: a case-control study in the Netherlands. Cancer Res.1989;49:4020-4023.
15. Ivey KL, Lewis JR, Hodgson JM, et al. Association between yogurt, milk, cheese consumption and common carotid artery intima-media thickness and cardiovascular disease risk factors in elderly women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 Jul;94(1):234-9.
16. Kiessling G, Schneider J, Jahreis G. Long-term consumption of fermented dairy products over 6 months increases HDL cholesterol. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2002 Sep;56(9):843-9.
17. Pihlstrom BL, Michalowicz BS, Johnson NW. Periodontal diseases. Lancet. 2005 Nov;366(9499):1809-20.
18. Shimazaki Y, Shirota T, Uchida K, et al. Intake of dairy products and periodontal disease: the Hisayama Study. J Periodontol. 2008 Jan;79(1):131-7.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Can Coconut Oil Reverse Alzheimer's?

Reposted from Food Matters
http://www.foodmatters.tv/articles-1/can-coconut-oil-reverse-alzheimers

By Jerome Burne

One Man's Incredible Story

One morning last month, Vrajlal Parmar got up, washed and dressed himself, and at 10am boarded the council minibus to a nearby leisure centre. In the evening, the 67-year-old former production line worker from London took the bus home. Nothing remarkable there - except that nearly a year earlier Mr Parmar had been diagnosed as being in the late stages of Alzheimer’s.

He’d been given the standard pencil and paper test (called the Mini Mental State Examination) that doctors use to diagnose Alzheimer’s and measure how it’s progressing. A healthy person would score 30.  The letter Mr Parmar’s family got back from the Cognitive Disorders Clinic at University College London stated that he was ‘too severely affected to score anything at all’. Any drug treatment would be ineffective.

What has made the difference, according to son Kal Parmar, is a teaspoon of coconut oil twice a day mixed with his food, which Mr Parmar has been taking since July. 


The idea that a common vegetable oil — made from coconut meat and which you can buy in supermarkets — could make a difference seems ludicrous, yet in the U.S. there have been hundreds of similar anecdotes of dramatic improvements. 
Kal Parmar first heard about coconut oil via a video on YouTube — it was about a doctor in Florida whose husband’s Alzheimer’s had improved amazingly with coconut oil. 
Kal says he would probably have dismissed this as one more bit of internet hype if there hadn’t been a favourable comment about the oil from Kieran Clarke, professor of physiological biochemistry at Oxford University and head of the Cardiac Metabolism Research Group.

Switching The Brain Back On

Professor Clarke, an expert on the way the body makes and uses energy, believes coconut oil and similar compounds might help by boosting the brain’s energy supply. 
Most of the time our brains rely on glucose from carbohydrates, but if that isn’t available — because we haven’t eaten anything for a while or because we’re eating almost no carbohydrates — then our brain cells can switch to using the energy from our fat stores.
 This energy comes in the form of small molecules called ketones. 
As Professor Clarke explains:
‘Coconut oil contains a lot of a particular sort of fat that our bodies can use to make more of the ketone “brain food”. 'It’s known as MCT (medium chain triglycerides) and it’s not found in the fats most of us eat.’ 

'Alzheimers Is Like Diabetes Of The Brain'

But why should ketones help people with Alzheimer’s? One of the new ideas about the disease is that it is diabetes of the brain.  Just as diabetics have problems with glucose and insulin, so Alzheimer’s sufferers can’t get enough glucose into brain cells to give them the energy they need to lay down new memories and think clearly.

If you have diabetes, you are three times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s. 


As the New Scientist magazine revealed last September, there is evidence that the brains of Alzheimer’s sufferers become resistant to insulin. This is disastrous because insulin regulates the brain chemicals that are crucial for memory.
When one U.S. researcher blocked insulin supplies in the brains of laboratory animals, they developed all the plaques and tangles that are a classic mark of Alzheimer’s.


Clearing The Memory Fog

 
The doctor in Florida in the YouTube video is Dr Mary Newport, a paediatrician who began using coconut oil to treat her husband, Harry, four years ago.  He had been suffering from early onset Alzheimer’s for eight years. She claims the results after he started taking the oil were remarkable.  ‘He began to get his short-term memory back,’ says Dr Newport.

‘His depression lifted, he became more like his old self. The problem he’d had with walking improved. An MRI scan showed his brain had stopped shrinking.’


So what prompted her to use the oil in the first place? 
‘Some years ago, I came across a small study suggesting that Alzheimer’s patients had a problem using glucose in the brain and that ketones could be an alternative source of fuel. The study suggested a patented drink that boosted ketone levels improved memory and thinking skills in patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s.’

A follow-up paper on this was published in the journal BMC Neuroscience in 2008. Dr Newport found out the patented drink contained MCT oil extracted from coconuts. ‘The patented product still wasn’t on the market, so I thought it would be worth trying coconut oil itself,’ she says.

Her accounts of Harry’s improvement, illustrated with videos on YouTube, prompted hundreds of people to share their positive experience of the oil.

One carer of a man with dementia reported: ‘His ability to speak and recall words is better, but not his ability to make good decisions.’
The carer of another man who’d had dementia for ten years said: ‘His reaction to the oil was very gradual, but his mood is so much better.’

Dr Newport recently added MCT oil to her husband’s regime because the combination gives a more steady supply of ketones, she says.  While MCT supplies more ketones, most are gone from the body in three hours. Coconut oil provides fewer ketones, but they last up to eight hours. 
Let us be clear, coconut oil doesn’t appear to be a cure. Furthermore, none of these accounts prove anything scientifically.They are just anecdotes and until there is a proper controlled trial against a placebo, few medical professionals will feel the case for coconut oil has been made.

The Trouble With Dementia Drugs And Why Coconut Oil May Be A Solution

These stories, however, do suggest pure coconut oil - and the MCT oil that can be extracted from it,  is worth investigating.

Currently, the only type of drug available for Alzheimer’s patients, known as a cholinesterase inhibitor, works by boosting the amount of a brain chemical they are lacking.
It slows memory decline in about a third of patients for between six months and a year.

Last year, the NHS spent more than £70 million on the most widely used brand, Aricept. Its potential side-effects include nausea, diarrhoea and slow heart rhythms, which can lead to fainting. 

Hundreds of millions of pounds have been spent trying to develop drugs to clear the plaques of damaged protein in the brain that are the classic sign of Alzheimer’s, but all have failed to get a licence.

So could tackling the energy supply to the brain be another option? 

One expert who thinks it’s worth investigating is Professor Rudy Tanzi, director of the Genetics and Ageing Research Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital and professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School. In a recent article for the Cure Alzheimer’s Fund, he explained why coconut oil might work.

‘Virgin coconut oil contains the fats that can be converted into ketone bodies, which can serve as an alternate energy source for the brain. 'The ketone bodies could potentially provide energy to  the glucose-deprived brains of Alzheimer’s patients.’

Are There Any Drawbacks?

‘The fats (found in coconut oil) can be potentially harmful to the heart, so it would be wise to regularly monitor cholesterol and triglyceride levels if you are taking it.’

As well as coconut oil there is MCT oil, which can be bought over the counter and has been used by some athletes for years (ketones also power muscles), and the patented food supplement drink that triggered Dr Newport’s original experiment.

The more expensive patented supplement is called Axona, and has a licence from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use as a medical food for patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s who are taking a drug such as Aricept. 

‘The attraction of Axona for doctors is that it provides a well-studied, pure and concentrated dose of the ketone-producing properties found in coconut oil, while eliminating the multitude of triglyceride-elevating components it can contain,’ says Dr Richard S. Isaacson, associate professor of clinical neurology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

‘The ketone-boosting approach to Alzheimer’s seems to work in about half the patients. I’d recommend coconut oil as well if there was some good trial evidence for it.’

The First Approved Coconut Trial

 
This evidence could soon be coming from the first coconut trial now being set up by Dave Morgan, professor of molecular pharmacology and physiology and head of the USF Health Byrd Alzheimer’s Institute in Florida.

‘I was very impressed by the anecdotal evidence gathered by Dr Newport,’ he says. ‘Patients want to know if it works and who is going to benefit, but our physicians have no scientific basis to advise them.

‘It will be a placebo-controlled trial on patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s. I don’t expect it to slow the progression of the disease, but it does seem to improve some of the symptoms.’

What About The Scientific Proof?

Here in the UK most experts are, perhaps understandably, sceptical of the coconut oil claims.
‘There is a huge placebo response in Alzheimer’s,’ warns Professor Robert Howard, professor of old age psychiatry and psychopathology at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.

‘It’s a remitting and relapsing disease, so there are often times when things seem to be getting better. It is important to protect patients from false hope and not expose them to quackery. I’m not sure there is a problem with glucose getting into brain cells but if I were to follow that line I think an existing diabetes drug like metformin would be a better bet than coconut oil. If people believe coconut oil improves symptoms it probably won’t do any harm.’

However, in some people large amounts can cause diarrhoea.

The Alzheimer’s Society, which has just had its research funding boosted by the Government, says while it ‘wouldn’t discourage anyone from taking it . . .  there is not enough evidence to suggest that coconut oil or ketones have benefits for people with Alzheimer’s, so we would not consider funding research into it’. 

However, David Smith, professor of pharmacology at the Physiology Institute at Oxford University and director of Optima (Oxford Project to Investigate Memory and Ageing), insists this  is a mistake. ‘We have no way of knowing if coconut oil is truly effective, but given the scale of the Alzheimer’s crisis facing us, and that there’s a rational mechanism for why it could work, it’s obviously crying out for a proper trial.’

When Kal Parmar talked to a local newspaper about his father’s improvement, he received more than 150 emails asking for help. So far about a dozen people in the UK have come back to him saying they had someone in their family on coconut oil, in some cases with impressive results following Dr Newport’s reports. Recently, following Dr Newport’s example, Kal has added a  teaspoon of MCT oil twice a day to his father’s regimen.

Source Link: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/...Alzeimers-Can-coconut-oil-ease.html and 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Block Dangerous Inflammatory Signaling

Reposted from Life Extension
http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2013/ss2013_Block-Dangerous-Inflammatory-Signaling_01.htm?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=normal

By Julian Warshovsky
 
Block Dangerous Inflammatory Signaling
The list of chronic diseases caused by inflammation is enormous.1-3
From initiating cancer, Alzheimer’s, and heart disease to the chronic pain of arthritis, sustained inflammation relentlessly destroys our aging bodies.1,3
Mainstream medicine has failed to offer satisfactory solutions for suppressing chronic inflammatory reactions.3 Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and glucocorticoids target acute pain, but they have adverse side effects and are not suitable to quench ongoing inflammation.4,5
This widespread problem led scientists to seek a solution to safely reduce both acute pain and the chronic inflammation. 6
Three plant extracts have been identified that powerfully inhibit the underlying factors that trigger inflammation—safely reducing both chronic pain and long-term disease risk.
Unlike drugs, turmeric oil, ginger, and curcumin work through diverse mechanisms to block multiple pathways of the inflammation-signaling process.7-16
These natural ingredients deliver benefits that no currently available drug can—they inhibit both COX and LOX enzymes, which in turn curtails creation of the prostaglandin and leukotriene signaling molecules.7-16
An abundance of studies have confirmed that the biochemical actions of curcumin, ginger, and turmeric oil can be beneficial against the causative factors behind arthritis,16-23 cardiovascular disease,16,24-28 cancer,29-33 and other diseases…and these effects are often observable in a matter of weeks!20,27,29,34
A novel method has been discovered to deliver more of the active molecules found in these three plant extracts to your bloodstream.35-38

An All-Out Assault on Chronic Inflammation

An All-Out Assault on Chronic Inflammation  
Just about every chronic disease—from arthritis, to heart disease, to diabetes, to Alzheimer’s disease— has one thing in common: destructive, unchecked inflammation.1-3
Chronic inflammation is often the end result of a complex “domino effect” of signaling molecules known as prostaglandins and leukotrienes.39,40 The problem with most drugs is that they only inhibit one of the steps involved in chronic inflammation (providing only partial relief).41
For example, NSAIDs inhibit the production of prostaglandin signaling molecules by blocking enzymes known as COX-1 and COX-2. But they do not inhibit production of leukotriene signaling molecules, which requires blocking the 5-LOX enzyme.7,41
Curcumin , turmeric oil, and ginger work together to block all these signaling pathways to deliver broad-spectrum protection against chronic inflammation.7-16
As a result, these plant extracts have potential benefit against numerous disorders.42,43

2,000 Studies Can’t Be Wrong!

Inflammation is a major trigger of cancer,44 the second leading cause of death in the United States.45
Your body has a natural ability to fight cancer through the activity of its own tumor-suppressing genes.46 However, over time, environmental factors such as inflammation can turn off (or “silence”) these genes, allowing cancer to take hold and spread unchecked.47,48
Over 2,000 published studies show curcumin suppresses many cancers—including breast, prostate, liver, skin, colon, and lung cancers31,49—by interfering at every stage of their development, progression, and metastasis.50 While anticancer drugs and cancer itself weaken the immune system, curcumin enhances it,51-55 serving as an “immune-restorer.”52

Guard Against Platelet Aggregation

Inflammation plays a key role in the development of cardiovascular disease.56 Due to their action against the underlying causes of inflammation: curcumin, ginger, and turmeric have all been found to have powerful effects against cardiovascular disease.16,24-28
A study on ginger indicated that it could improve cardiovascular and cerebrovascular complications that occur as a result of platelet aggregation (the tendency of blood cells to clump together).24 For the study, either ginger or aspirin taken daily with 10 mg of the antihypertensive drug nifedipine (Procardia®) was shown to boost the drug’s anti-platelet aggregation effect in both normal and hypertensive patients.

Outperforms Leading Arthritis Drug

Outperforms Leading Arthritis Drug
The hallmarks of the most common form of arthritis (osteoarthritis) are inflammation and cartilage destruction. While both ginger and curcumin block inflammation—curcumin also inhibits cartilage breakdown by the body!57
In one study, one group of rheumatoid arthritis patients received 500 milligrams of curcumin daily, another received 50 milligrams daily of the NSAID drug diclofenac, and a third group received a combination of the two. After eight weeks, the curcumin-only group had the greatest reduction in joint pain and swelling, with no supplement-related adverse effects. By contrast, 20% of participants in the drug-only group dropped out due to adverse effects!19
Ginger has also been tested against the NSAID drug diclofenac. Two groups of osteoarthritis patients took either ginger extract ( 340 milligrams daily) or diclofenac (100 milligrams) for four weeks.20 Both treatments were equally as effective; however, the drug group experienced an increase in digestive pain (dyspepsia) and degeneration of their stomach mucosa.

Reverse Cognitive Impairment

Curcumin and ginger offer great promise in the fight against cognitive decline and dementia.
In animal models of Alzheimer’s, curcumin has been shown to cross the blood-brain barrier in order to enhance clearance of amyloid-beta from the brain (the accumulation of which is strongly associated with Alzheimer’s).58
One impressive study demonstrated ginger’s ability to defend against—and possibly even reverse—middle-aged cognitive impairment.59 For the study, 60 healthy middle-aged women took 400 or 800 milligrams of ginger extract or placebo daily. After two months, the ginger participants showed significantly enhanced memory and brain activity consistent with boosted cognitive capability.
As beneficial as these ingredients are on their own, they’re even more powerful together. Scientists have combined curcumin and ginger extracts with turmeric oil in a novel formulation that also delivers a distinct advantage: it naturally enhances absorption.

Enhanced Formula Provides Better Absorption!

Turmeric oil is obtained from the potent liquid remaining after curcumin extraction.60,61 Aside from turmeric oil’s own strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, research revealed that its rich content of compounds called aromatic turmerones produces a significant enhancement of curcumin levels inside the cell compared to normal curcumin.38 This formulation also contains phospholipids, a type of emulsifying molecule that enhances absorption of poorly soluble active compounds.62

Summary

Chronic inflammation eventually leads to serious diseases such as cancer.1-3Drugs that target acute inflammation are not suitable for long-term use and can cause substantial side effects.3-5
In a significant breakthrough, ginger, curcumin, and turmeric oil have been found to block chronic inflammation at every stage of the process, safely inhibiting long-term disease risk.7-16
Multiple studies demonstrate that these three extracts combat an array of disorders, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, and arthritis. 16-33
These three extracts have been combined in a groundbreaking formulation that greatly boosts absorption!
If you have any questions on the scientific content of this article, please call a Life Extension® Health Advisor at 1-866-864-3027.

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Sunday, January 12, 2014

Why Your Ancestors Were Fertile, But You Aren't

Reposted from Butter Nutrition
http://butternutrition.com/why-we-are-more-infertile-than-our-ancestors/

With an abundance of “healthy” food, medicine and healthcare available, we should be gaining fertility, not losing it– right? But that’s NOT the case. There a quite a few things you can do nutritionally to support fertility, that are NOT happening in the standard American diet. To name a few:

1) Less saturated fat is eaten and this equates to less fat soluble vitamins in the diet (A, D, E, K2).

That egg white omelet,  fat free milk and margarine in your diet is what I am talking about!  They are at the center of this problem. You see, the fat soluble vitamins are found in the FAT, when you eat low fat, you lose these vital fertility nutrients! These vitamins are imperative for hormone production and reproduction. When you don’t get enough of them, your body can’t made adequate amounts of sex hormones! You also need these fat soluble vitamins to keep cavities away, but that is another story…

2) Increased toxins in the diet increases the body’s toxic burden, especially if not met by an abundance of nutrition to help detoxify these toxins from the body and neutralize free radicals from the detox process.

With added coloring, flavors, thickeners, chemicals, antibiotics, GMOs in the food supply, who is making sure you are keeping your liver healthy enough do to all the “dirty work” of detoxification? Certainly no one. In result you suffer from increased inflammation in the body, simply because the body doesn’t have the nutrients it needs to do the job RIGHT.

3) Less efficient liver function and detoxification.

This is usually due to a protein deficiency, particularly of anti-inflammatory proteins like the amino acid glycine that fuel phase 2 detoxification in the liver (found in gelatin).

4) Increased use of synthetic hormones: the birth control pill, estrogen replacement, etc.

YIKES! Who is telling your body what to do? Is it a hormone made in a lab?

5) Increased intake of polyunsaturated fats (think vegetable oils), that slow hormone synthesis.

Polyunsaturated fats (also known as PUFA fats) are now consumed in mass quantity in place of traditional fats (lard, butter, animal fats), and these vegetable oils are VERY detrimental to our health (they actually hurt hormone production and increase the signs of aging)! Definitely not fertility’s best friend.
“Unsaturated fats cause aging, clotting, inflammation, cancer, & weight gain.” Ray Peat, PhD (PMS to Menopause: Female Hormones in Context).

6) Increased intake of processed food in the diet with very little nutrient value, that doesn’t allow a women with sufficient nutrient stores for supporting a growing fetus.

The body is very smart. If there is not enough nutrition to support the mother and the fetus, pregnancy will not happen. It’s a part of your body’s innate intelligence for our own survival.

7) Hormonal imbalance.

An excess of estrogen and low levels of progesterone set the stage for cyclic female issues. Read more about this here.

8) Deficiencies, particularly those vital for hormone production, namely:

  • Cholesterol (butter, eggs, and animal foods): I know you’ve heard the cholesterol fearing messages from the media, urging Americans to lower their intake of cholesterol rich foods, when in reality that message is very SILLY, as cholesterol is the RAW MATERIAL for making hormones!
  • Animal sourced vitamin A (liver, eggs, butter, whole milk, cod liver oil). Vitamin A deficiency is one of the biggest nutrition deficiencies I see with my clients, and this is happening because of #1 on the list (re-read if needed to connect the dots).
  • T3 thyroid hormonethyroid hormone  drives the speed your body converts the raw materials into sex hormones (see info-graphic below).

9) Last but not least– STRESS!

Did you know that when you are under stress, your body instinctively makes less progesterone (the pro-gestation hormone to support pregnancy) and makes more cortisol (the stress hormone) instead? This is why some of you ladies will skip your monthly cycle when under a lot of stress! Chronic stress is a growing trend, and it definitely plays an important role in sex and reproduction.
It doesn’t have to be this way! The time is NOW to transform the generation of infertility into a powerful world of fertility. Fertility is a sign of health, and a lack of it is a key clue your body is trying to tell you something! It’s also important to remember that infertility is not just about women! Men’s reproductive health/nutrition is equally important (so share this with the men in your life too)!

Friday, January 10, 2014

16 Health Benefits of Drinking Warm Lemon Water

Reposted from Food Matters
http://foodmatters.tv/articles-1/cheers-to-drinking-warm-lemon-water

Lemons are vitamin C rich citrus fruits that enhance your beauty, by rejuvenating skin from within bringing a glow to your face. One of the major health benefits of drinking lemon water is that it paves way for losing weight faster, thus acting as a great weight loss remedy.



Lemon water flushes out toxins and is extremely beneficial for the body.

 

Warm lemon water serves as the perfect ‘good morning drink’, as it aids the digestive system and makes the process of eliminating the waste products from the body easier. It prevents the problem of constipation and diarrhea, by ensuring smooth bowel functions.

Nutritional Value Of Lemons

A glass of lemon juice contains less than 25 calories. It is a rich source of nutrients like calcium, potassium, vitamin C and pectin fiber. It also has medicinal values and antibacterial properties. It also contains traces of iron and vitamin A.

Lemon, a fruit popular for its therapeutic properties, helps maintain your immune system and thus, protects you from the clutches of most types of infections. It also plays the role of a blood purifier. Lemon is a fabulous antiseptic and lime-water juice also works wonders for people having heart problems, owing to its high potassium content. So, make it a part of your daily routine to drink a glass of warm lemon water in the morning and enjoy its health benefits. Read on for more interesting information on the benefits lemon water.

16 Health Benefits Of Drinking Warm Lemon Water




  • Lemon is an excellent and rich source of vitamin C, an essential nutrient that protects the body against immune system deficiencies
  • Lemons contain pectin fiber which is very beneficial for colon health and also serves as a powerful antibacterial
  • It balances maintain the pH levels in the body
  • Having warm lemon juice early in the morning helps flush out toxins
  • It aids digestion and encourages the production of bile
  • It is also a great source citric acid, potassium, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium
  • It helps prevent the growth and multiplication of pathogenic bacteria that cause infections and diseases
  • It helps reducing pain and inflammation in joints and knees as it dissolves uric acid
  • It helps cure the common cold
  • The potassium content in lemon helps nourish brain and nerve cells
  • It strengthens the liver by providing energy to the liver enzymes when they are too dilute
  • It helps balance the calcium and oxygen levels in the liver In case of a heart burn, taking a glass of concentrated lemon juice can give relief
  • It is of immense benefit to the skin and it prevents the formation of wrinkles and acne
  • It helps maintain the health of the eyes and helps fight against eye problems
  • Aids in the production of digestive juices
  • Lemon juice helps replenish body salts especially after a strenuous workout session
Packed with all the goodness, make it a point to begin your day with a glass of warm lemon juice. Its cleansing and healing effects will have positive effects on your health in the long run. However it is very important to note that lemon juice when comes directly in contact with the teeth, can ruin the enamel on the teeth. Hence, it is advised to consume it diluted and also rinse your mouth thoroughly after drinking lemon juice.

10 Reasons Why Low-Fat is NOT High Nutrition

Reposted from Empowered Sustenance
http://empoweredsustenance.com/low-fat-diet-bad/

Low fat is bad news

Fortunately, the low fat dogma of the late 20th century and early 21st century is sloooowly being accepted as the awful nutrition advice it really is. As a matter of fact, Sweden recently became the first Western nation to adopt a low-carb, high-fat approach to nutrition. Way to go, Sweden!
When I explain the importance of dietary fat to my curious friends and clients, I prefer a simple explanation from a biological standpoint, which I share in this post. I find this is more effective than handing them a thick stack of the controlled studies showing that saturated fat consumption doesn’t cause heart disease. (But if you want the studies, they are in the first 12 pages of this book.)
If you are currently paranoid about eating fat, this post will give you the knowledge and due sense of urgency to correct your diet. If you already consume a balanced-fat diet, this post will provide you with information to share with those who are curious or suspicious of your unconventional eating habits.

1. Healthy bile release requires fat

low fat is a bad idea The gallbladder stores bile, which digests fats. The presence of fats in a meal signals the gallbladder to release bile into the digestive tract, and the bile emulsifies the fat so we can absorb it.

But what happens when we only have a few measly grams of fats in our meal? Bile release isn’t signaled, so bile sits in the gallbladder, turning thick and viscous. In a vicious cycle, it becomes more difficult for the gallbladder to release bile when bile is thick, so it just gets thicker in the gallbladder. Then, if we do eat a meal heavy in fat, the gallbladder can’t squeeze out the thick bile and the fat passes through our digestive tract undigested and unused for critical tasks in the body.
To make matters worse, the body becomes increasingly toxic because the bile stores toxins and hormones that need to leave the body. If we don’t get rid of that bile, those toxins and old hormones just sit there and can be recirculated.

2. Gallbladder health requires fat

When it comes to the gallbladder, the rule is “use it or lose it.” This makes sense, as we see soaring numbers of gallbladder removals from people who have consumed a low fat or poor fat diet in the past. What happens to the gallbladder after months or years on a low fat diet? After a short stint on a low fat diet, we can create serious gallbladder congestion due to that thick, sticky bile sitting in the gallbladder. Eventually, gallbladder attacks and gallstones occur.
If you currently experience gallbladder problems or have had your gallbladder removed, you should gradually increase your fat intake and take targeted supplements, including ox bile. I recommend working with a nutritional therapist or naturopath to address the problem.

3. Fat-soluble vitamins are found in fat

Vitamins A, D, E and K rare found in fatty foods, because they require lots of fat for absorption. As recorded by nutrition pioneer Weston Price, traditional diets of cultures from around the globe contained 10 times the amount of fat soluble vitamins than the modern diet. The nourishing animal foods considered sacred by traditional cultures, such as dairy products, fish roe, and organ meats, deliver the these vitamins along with the fat needed to absorb the vitamins.
As one example, we can only obtain vitamin A from naturally fat-rich sources like cod liver oil, grassfed dairy, liver, and egg yolks. That’s right, carrots and other vegetables will not provide you with vitamin A!

4. Cholesterol balance requires plenty of good fats

why low fat is a bad idea The roles of cholesterol in our body is catastrophically misunderstood thanks to a lot of propaganda by industries that prioritize profits over the the health of their consumers. As evidenced by the eating habits of traditional cultures from across the globe, good health relies on an adequate intake of cholesterol from animal fats.

Science tells us that cholesterol does not athersclerosis. As a healing agent in the body, levels of cholesterol rise during periods of stress or when inflammation is present. Providing cholesterol through good quality fats, such as pastured egg yolks and grassfed butter, allows the body to use cholesterol to help address the inflammation.
As a matter of fact, low blood cholesterol levels are associated with (but not proven to cause):
  • A higher risk of mortality (1, 2. 3)
  • A higher risk of depression (4, 5)
  • A higher risk of committing violent crime and suicide (6, 7)
  • A higher risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease (8, 9)
One area of confusion is the labeling of LDL as “bad cholesterol” and HDL as “good cholesterol.” We know that high levels of HDL cholesterol is beneficial and we know there are subtypes of LDL cholesterol. The large, fluffy LDL particles are benign but the small, dense LDL is correlated to heart disease.
Sources of saturated fats (like butter, animal fats, and coconut oil) change the dense LDL to fluffy LDL and raise HDL cholesterol… both health protective factors! Processed grains (like cereal) and vegetable oils, however, turn the fluffy LDL into the dense LDL, increasing the risk of heart disease (Source).
For additional information on cholesterol, statin drugs, and cholesterol testing, I highly recommend signing up for Chris Kresser’s newsletter. You’ll get free, instant access to his ebook The Diet-Heart Myth, which clears up cholesterol confusion in plain english. Also, I recommend his book Your Personal Paleo Code to fine-tune your diet into a truly heart-healthy protocol.

5. Blood sugar balance requires fat

small sugar cube Whenever we eat a source of carbohydrate, it should be accompanied by a quality source of fat. Fat slows down the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream and prevents sugar highs and sugar crashes. This keeps us full longer so we can reach or maintain a healthy weight.

When food producers and healthy cookbook authors jumped on the low-fat bandwagon, they realized that reducing the fat in food eliminated moisture and flavor. So, they compensated by increasing the sugar content. Increased sugar and decreased fat means bad, bad news for blood sugar regulation. No wonder we are seeing skyrocketing numbers of diabetes!

6. Protein utilization requires fat

Adequate fat is necessary for the proper digestion and utilization of proteins. Frequent consumption of protein without fat depletes fat-soluble vitamins, including vitamin A. According to nutrition expert Sally Fallon:
Protein cannot be adequately utilized without dietary fats. That is why protein and fats occur together in eggs, milk, fish and meats. A high protein, low fat diet can cause many problems including too rapid growth and depletion of vitamin A and D reserves. Source and read more.
If we examine the eating habits of our parents and grandparents (and great grandparents, for those in my generation) , we see that lean protein is a thoroughly modern invention. Great-grandma would never serve egg white omelets, for goodness sakes! After all, the vitamins and fatty acids in the yolk are required to utilize the protein in the white.

7.  Hormone balance requires fat

small egg yolk We must consume sources of cholesterol-rich saturated fats to provide the building blocks for sex hormones, including testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone. Without enough dietary cholesterol, women often become very deficient in progesterone. For men, a low fat diet means low testosterone… and you know what that means, guys!

Low fat diets also undermine balanced hormones by preventing the detox of excess hormones, particularly estrogen. When there is excess estrogen in the body, it is packaged into the bile so it can be excreted with food waste. If bile is not being released, then old estrogen sits in the liver and gallbladder and can be recirculated in the body.
Modern lifestyles lead to estrogen dominance for many men and women, since stress and poor diet increases estrogen synthesis and reduces detox of old hormones.  For women, estrogen dominance means PMS and menopausal symptoms. For men, this often manifests as erectile dysfunction or “man boobs.”

8. Detox requires fat

The liver acts like a toxin filter for our entire body. After collecting toxins, it packages them in bile. If things work correctly, the gallbladder releases bile when we digest our food and the toxins in the bile leave the body with the feces.
If we aren’t consuming adequate to signal bile release, however, then the toxins build up in both the liver and gallbladder. The toxic load increases overtime and the body can reabsorb these stagnant toxins. 
You may not see a knob of butter as a detox-promoting food, but it actually is! By stimulating bile release, good sources of saturated fats like butter encourage detox, balanced hormones and weight loss.

9. Weight loss and weight management requires fat

scale What happens when you reach for a few rice cakes or a low-fat protein bar as an afternoon snack? You feel ravenous and desperately crave sugar in under an hour. When we take a calorie-for-calorie approach, 200 calories of coconut oil is going to keep you full for at least 2-3 hours, while those 200 calories of whole-grain cereal and skim milk will leave you starving an hour later.

Fat signals satiation because it digests slowly, providing long-burning energy. Also important, it makes food taste delicious so that we end a meal with thoroughly satisfied taste buds. Additionally, it supports detox – a key part of losing stubborn weight.
If you want to lose weight, adequate fat MUST be part of the picture! Not only will it leave you feeling full, it supports detox and liver health… two necessities for weight management.

10. Fat makes food taste good

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, fat makes food enjoyable. If you browse cookbooks from the 1800′s, you’ll find that every vegetable recipe contains copious amounts of butter, lard, egg yolks, pork, and/or cream. Plain steamed vegetables would be a completely foreign concept to home cooks of that era. Homemakers understood that plenty of whole food fats created delicious meals and, as a result, each family member eagerly finished off a serving of spinach… because it was swimming in fresh cream and dollops of butter.
Nourishing sources of fats makes healthy food taste delicious. It isn’t a shame that butter and egg yolks taste so good… it’s nature’s way of telling us that these foods are good for us!

How much fat is enough?

As a general rule of thumb, we should eat no less than 40% of our calories as fat. Many individuals thrive on a 50% fat diet and some people feel best on as much as 60% of calories as fat.
For a 2,000 calorie diet, obtaining 40% of calories from fat means eating about 90 grams of fat. Over the course of the day, if we are eating real foods prepared from scratch, an example looks roughly like:
  • 2 Tbs. butter
  • 1 Tbs. coconut oil (coconut oil is extremely healthful but it will not stimulate bile production, according to my extremely knowledgeable mentor. Consume it in addition to animal fats)
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 serving fatty steak (grassfed, of course!)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup full-fat ice cream
As you can see, the fats in this example are primarily saturated fats from the coconut oil, dairy, eggs, and meat. The avocado provides healthy monounsaturated fats. Vegetable oils should be completely avoided, because the high ratio of polyunsaturated fats is unnatural and inflammatory. Nuts and seeds (with the exception of coconut) should be consumed only in small amounts to prevent an imbalance of omega-6 to omega-3… but that discussion is a whole different blog post, and it is coming soon!